Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5.   Posted by Gatekeeper.Group: archive 1
Yaishin Higura
 player, 150 posts
Fri 17 Jul 2009
at 00:34
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Keeping his balance on the speeding vehicle, Higura instinctively pats Nanaret on the back when she chokes due to dust. Once the coughing and wheezing subsides and she can speak again, Higura listens intently, nodding his head at her words.

"... Yes, I do understand what you mean, Nanaret, and that is a very good point. This will be a major concern, I believe." He frowns slightly at that thought, his brow furrowing in thought as he considers this problem. "It will help to see how people are organized first, how cluttered or scattered they are, and how we can strive to reach as many of them as we can... Perhaps the workers have access to a device that would allow amplification. If not, then perhaps we will have to try to jury rig something..."

He turns towards Talia then, and tilts his head to one side. "Do you think that would be possible, Miss Talia? To build a makeshift device meant to amplify voice?" He asks, then shakes his head. "Well, I would suppose the possibility would also rely heavily on what we can get our hands on once we are there. So there will be no certainties until we reach our destination."

"Still... That is definitely something to ponder and consider." He finally says, gazing ahead while the vehicles speed for their destination...
Gatekeeper
 GM, 1153 posts
 Exalted Storyteller
 Five Coils Artificer
Fri 17 Jul 2009
at 02:13
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
As the chariots rock in the wake of the demolition blasts, Higura manages to keep his seat with little effort. Nanaret's body whips back and forth, but her grip remains firm. Talia and Xurizu barely manage to hold on, imbalanced by the bumpy ride. Brazen, Cheira, Mad Berry and Kaiken Pyra manage their own narrow saves, grasping onto harness lines, chariot edges or other arms to keep from tumbling over or out.

"Everyone all right?" shouts Klaxon gruffly, serving as pilot for Irjin's chariot. Blue-Streak Arashi yells from behind, "All clear and accounted for!"

"Very good," Irjin says loudly, half gripping, half clinging onto the gliding chariot dashboard, his glasses lopsided on his muzzle. "Pick up the speed, we've got a rendezvous to meet!" The pilots punch in commands on the crystal interface, and the hum of the thrusters intensifies, propelling them through several tight turns as they clear the alleyway, maneuver through winding side streets (during which the Celestials gain a healthy appreciation for the navigation skill of the Freerunner pilots) and emerge out onto the more generously proportioned Sunder Street.

At least half a mile ahead, they witness the shapes of elite Peace Force officers assembling at a distant intersection. They wear distinctive, crimson-painted armor, and carry what look to be rod or pike weapons. Among them floats a figure surrounded by a pillar of flame, from which burning wings unfurl outward, buoying her higher and higher in the air. At the peak of her ascent, the female Peace Force Officer speaks, and the Freerunners hear her ominous warning echoing throughout the Sector from afar...



OOC: Scene continues in 'Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, Operation Earthcalm'.

This message was last edited by the GM at 12:53, Sat 18 July 2009.

Gatekeeper
 GM, 1376 posts
 Exalted Storyteller
 Five Coils Artificer
Sat 3 Oct 2009
at 11:32
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Operation Earthcalm, Aftermath (Higura, Immy, Kilani, Nanaret, Xurizu, Freerunners and workers)

The safehouse Irjin has set up for the wounded and weary combatants is even larger than the previous one, and in better shape. It is more accurately a complex of buildings, comprising a worker's dormitory, a mundane weapons factory and a series of warehouses for storing captured equipment and machines. Now that the Peace Force has largely abandoned the district - both the Burning Feather, and the local Forces who quickly realized that they, too, are outclassed - claiming such a large area for the Resistance's purposes is simpler than ever.

The 80-odd workers that survived, along with 20 or so of Irjin's Freerunners (a number bolstered by the arrival of the Edgestriders that stayed behind on other tasks), are not left to themselves for long. Other civilian groups or representatives come by, looking for news or guidance now that the balance of power in the Sector has shifted toward the civilians. Some even bring food, utensils, first aid kits, sheets, sewing needles, whatever supplies they could spare.

Irjin manages to secure an entire block of dorms just for the Celestials, where they can rest away from the ordinary citizens gaping in awe at their powers, or needling them incessantly with questions. The building also contains a common room that serves well as both a dining and meeting area, and several adjacent offices, one of which the Freerunner leader claims for himself.

Once things have settled somewhat, Irjin requests to meet with the Celestials again, along with several Freerunners: Arashi and Klaxon, Jambiya and Rampuri, Basso and Heldra (the both of them bandaged, but otherwise strong as oxen). Gulda Marin arrives as well, though only two accompany her: Rivanto and another man, a thaumaturge named Tukunen. Exhausted and looking for a chance to unwind, Klaxon joins Gulda in rooting around the common room for something hard to drink.



OOC: Well, Free's arrival will be timed with Perian's, so we've got a little bit of a wait. PCs can post what they've done in the interim (hours, not days), whether just resting, or helping out around the complex (healing, examining equipment, organizing people, whatever), before coming back to the common room.

Some of you requested a private thread instead, this will also be posted.

You've gained all Essence back, I'll also let you roll Conviction for WP. But no Virtue channels back.
Saina Nanaret
 player, 231 posts
Sat 3 Oct 2009
at 12:45
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
At the new safehouse, Nanaret's first act is to choose a room for herself. She removes her jade breastplate, and fits into her new armor, attuning herself to it to test some of its functions. She spends some time scratching off the old insignia on the armor as well, and considers asking some of the laborers to give it a new paint job in dark blue. Later.

For now, the Lunar makes herself useful. This mostly amounts to carrying things and delivering messages, as Nanaret doesn't know a thing about medicine or machinery. She keeps Higura company when not running off on some odd errand, listening to him speak and work with people. To her credit, she does try to speak as well, if only to introduce herself, get to know some of the laborers and Freerunners by name. Though she does not consider herself a leader, she has some talent for making an impression.

Sometimes, that impression's not a good one. Some of the workers may have seen her fight, and wonder at the transformation of her subdued personality when Ranavalona's rage ascends. These are things she cannot quite explain, as her memories as Rana are always fuzzy and full of gaps. She can only hope that she hasn't already inadvertently hurt or frightened any of her would-be allies.

Later, Nanaret does attempt to rest properly, unburdened by responsibility or fragmented memory. Her therapy with Doctor Higura is progressing... but where it leads... the emotions stirred within her are passionate and complex.

When she emerges back into the common room, it's without the armor, but with her dark jumpsuit and coat. Her dark hair is slightly tousled. "Hello Irjin, Arashi..." Nanaret greets the ones she remembers by name. "You have news of Free yet? Our allies below, cannot wait long."

[Private to GM: 08:34, Today: Saina Nanaret rolled 2 successes using 3d10 with the White Wolf Exalted system with a target of 7 with rolls of 8,4,9. Conviction: WP back.]
Ledaal Xurizu
 player, 216 posts
 No Moon Lunar
 Sorcerer and Test Subject
Mon 5 Oct 2009
at 00:25
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
When they reach the safehouse, now things have calmed down somewhat, Xurizu claims a room for himself.  He strips out of his Lamellar and sets down his powerbow.  He doesn't yet pay much attention to the Gunzosha suit that had also been deposited in the room, instead focusing his attention on the Shield Bracers, familiarizing himself with the gestures needed to activate them.  Once he's assured himself that those work as they should, he next turns his attention to the Gunzosha suit.  After checking it briefly for damage, he dons the suit and spends the time to attune to it.  After familiarizing himself with the controls, he sets the armour to adopt the deep blue of his anima and the silver of his castemark, banishing the previous colours and insignia of the Burning Feather.  After that, he doffs the armour, thinking it inappropriate to wander around the safehouse in a combat suit.

He would much rather avoid people, especially after the disturbing edges of a memory the sight of the worker's uniforms had given him.  But he can't spend all of his time shut up in his room over that fear.  So instead he ventures out, trying to find the leader of the local sect of freerunners--Irjin.  He wants to converse with him on matters of Sorcery and Essence as the first Sorcerer he has met, excluding the enigmatic Third.  When he learns of the Thaumaturge's presence, Xurizu also tries to arrange a time to talk with him.  Thaumaturgy is a new interest of his, seeking something more flexible than sorcery, if far less powerful ...
Yaishin Higura
 player, 168 posts
Mon 5 Oct 2009
at 18:29
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Similarly to his companions, Higura also picks where he will elect his quarters, dropping his equipment in his room before moving on to try to organize the post-riot situation alongside Irjin and Gulda. There is a lot of work spent smoothing the relations between the defected Peace Forces and the workers, and Higura spends a lot of time helping the newly freed residents of the Earth understand the full weight and breadth of their new situation.

Higura spends time with Gulda as well, approaching her slowly and cautiously so as not to clear out the antagonistic, perhaps misunderstood impression he might have given to her at the start. The worker representative might not always understand the doctor's point of view, but at least he hopes that she will see that he is not simply being the devil's advocate in this situation. To those around him, he strives to be attentive, insightful and patient, helping them cope with the grand change their lives is now undertaking.

When time permits it, he continues to work with Nanaret and, even to a certain extent, Queen Ranavalona. He strives to mend the rift between the two sides residing in the Gladiatrix' body, sometimes to mixed result - although as of late, the Queen has not been completely rejecting his approach, and his talks with her about her times and the reason for the strong feelings that she carried past her own existence are a great source of progress for the doctor. Of course, he is nowhere near a conclusion with helping the two personalities come to terms with one another, but at the very least, he can sense that progress is underway.

Higura emerges soon after Nanaret does, smiling politely and saluting the Freerunners and their new allies, putting on his gloves before stepping into the conversation. "Timing will be quite crucial yes, as Nanaret suggest. If this recent victory is to hold, we will need to organize our efforts with our allies below. Without a decisive victory that will weaken the Earth district as a whole, there is a strong likely hood that we will face a counterattack... And that is not something the people who worked so hard at earning their freedom should have to face."
Gatekeeper
 GM, 1386 posts
 Exalted Storyteller
 Five Coils Artificer
Thu 8 Oct 2009
at 06:55
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Before meeting

Irjin is glad enough to spend some time with Xurizu and speak about sorcery for a time. Though he is not one to pry, the Freerunner leader has no qualms about explaining how he was initiated into the mystery of sorcery. [Private to Ledaal Xurizu: Apparently the Edgestrider bloodline has a significant strain of Air Dragon-blood breeding. Free is also a sorcerer, as well, with a proclivity toward arctic themed magic. One of the children of Edgestrider (Kril) fell in love with a Dragon-blooded (Ansari), and Irjin descends from their family. In fact he believes Ansari to still be alive, but has not seen her for two decades.

Irjin himself is actually a beastman Dragon-blood, an extreme rarity. Once he Exalted, Free himself took him under his wing and taught him everything he knows about sorcery. Most other sorcerers of Free's brood are actually half-Lunar, which itself has become rarer as generations passed, thus a possibly explanation for why the Edgestriders might have tried to woo a Dragon-blood into their family. Though Irjin claims that Kril and Ansari were truly in love...
] He also says that Free may well be persuaded to train Xurizu and Nanaret as well, both in sorcery and the shapeshifting of the Lunars. The old wolf has not had a Lunar apprentice for longer than Irjin himself has been alive, though.

As for thaumaturgy, Tukunen does not have any qualms about teaching Xurizu some of the trade, though it depends on what type of thaumaturgy he wishes to master. Irjin also points out there are many thaumaturges among the Freerunners, as well; the Mori and Blackrend septs have some of the more notable ones.

Higura's attempt to bridge gaps with Gulda Marin is not easily or immediately accepted. Gulda, while a strong leader with a mind for organization, is not as deeply compassionate as Higura is. She can at least accept that Higura was not trying to make trouble just for the sake of it, and that there is a benefit to leaving the soldiers alive, but many long years of resentment make it difficult for her to swallow that the soldiers do not deserve some punishment for their part in subjugating the workers - and firing the Shock Matrix, for that matter. In her opinion, they should have had the sense not to join the Burning Feather in the first place, if they truly were not the type to do harm to innocents if it were to their advantage.

Clearly Higura will need to work with Gulda more. [Private to Yaishin Higura: You suspect a deeper story to Gulda's hatred of the Peace Force. ]Fortunately her 'second', Rivanto, though lacking in her ability to rally and inspire the workers, is generally a more level-headed man, and advises her against extremes. For now that would have to be enough.

Current time

As everyone settles down in the common room of what is now being called the 'command center building', Gulda and Klaxon haul out a couple bottles of some dubious moonshine and a keg of ale. Irjin looks askance at the former, and at the wolfish grins from some of the other Freerunners (apparently, neither Rivanto nor Tukunen are much for the hard stuff.)

"We ARE meeting the Boss soon, so don't get yourself completely wasted," the Freerunner leader remarks mildly, then addresses Nanaret's concerns directly. "What we are mostly waiting for is not Free himself but his agent, Kares Perian. The man has been working non-stop to bring together two more significant allies in Pasiap's Resolve. We have the workers, here, and Boss says Perian's making headway with a group of Peace Force defectors, and a hidden group of ex-Immaculates."

"So all we've got are turncoats that can turn right back on us?" Gulda scoffs and gulps down some moonshine, immediately grimacing afterward. "Clears the sinuses don't it?" chuckles Heldra as she, Basso and Klaxon brave the brew.

This message was last edited by the GM at 08:50, Tue 20 Oct 2009.

Ledaal Xurizu
 player, 217 posts
 No Moon Lunar
 Sorcerer and Test Subject
Mon 12 Oct 2009
at 18:46
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Xurizu is more recalcitrant about his own sorcerous initiation, though this is more due to his own incomplete memories of the event than specifically being evasive.  He does listen with interest to Irjin's own stories however, the contrast between his experiences (at least those he remembered) and those of the beastman coming as something of a revelation.  He expresses an interest in the possibility of learning things from Free, both related to sorcery and to his own nature.  While he doesn't speak for Nanaret, he's reasonably sure the other lunar would be similarly interested.

When it comes to discussion of Thaumaturgy, Xurizu would be most interested in learning the Arts of Geomancy and Enchantment, although Alchemy also has the potential to be interesting.  He's especially interested in the potential to track down manses and other enchanted sites and in creating minor talismans.

Current Time

"That is welcome news," he replied to Irjin.  Both about the arrival of Free and of other help.   "I hope that with his help we can aid our other allies in securing and liberating the floor, before there is a full counterattack."

"Gulda," he said to the woman.  "It seems that you are very demanding of change, but not that accepting when people do," the slight lunar speaks bluntly.  "And further than that, you imply that the judgement of those accepting them onto our side cannot be trusted.  I would ask that you trust them, as we trust you."

[Private to Ledaal Xurizu: Gulda's female! I forgot to be specific.]

This message was last edited by the GM at 04:13, Tue 13 Oct 2009.

Immaculate Kestrel
 player, 54 posts
 Pretty In Pink
Wed 14 Oct 2009
at 15:09
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Immy's... slightly off to one corner, iron and steel swirling in a dense dance about her, eyes closed and staring blindly through the storm. Possibly she's speaking to something, and something to her, becuase her lips are moving slightly; but there's no real sound from either girl or god, save the shuddering whirrrr of steel in dust and air, and the faint screeches of iron against hard stone.

"...so I don't know, I think here would be a nice place if you want it, right? It's been a safehouse for a while, so the safeness of it probably goes up quite high and all, but then if anything ever happens its going to be a very-not-safe-house and the Dragons will probably blow it into dust. And everyone inside, probably, or at least they'll try, because that's how the Dragons do things. Um. But I won't mind if you wnated to carry on with me a bit longer too, though; it's kinda nice having you around, especially now that 23's off in one of his I'm-goiing-to-be-missing-because-I'm-mysterious trips and tht means I won't have anyone to chatter to for a bit and that kinda makes me lonely sometimes, and it's always nice to have a partner with you to, you know, keep a look out and things, and I figure you'll probably get along pretty well with my sword or something, or maybe I can try to join you with it, but I won't do that unless you really want to, right? Because that really wouldn't be nice." Although, of course, it'd be really, really cool, because then she'd have a warehouse for a sword, and that probably counted for all kinds of really weird things. Maybe she could declare herself a city, and start producing her own shampoo.

...although those listening really hard could probably hear a constant bubbling of noise, as a whispered counterpart to the sounds of iron and air.
Gatekeeper
 GM, 1400 posts
 Exalted Storyteller
 Five Coils Artificer
Tue 20 Oct 2009
at 07:52
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Gulda swivels around to stare at Xurizu from her seat at the common room bar, half grimacing at his words and half at her stiff drink. "Come again? I'd be thrilled if they've a genuine bone in their body, but how in the Coils are we supposed to be sure they mean it? How am I supposed to be convinced they understand what damage they've done, unknowingly or not, and aren't just giving into us out of a need for self-preservation?"

"That kind of trust takes time, and that's not somethin' we even have right now," the red-haired rebel worker grouses. She takes another gulp of the moonshine. "Whew. Goes down better now that my tongue's blasted numb. Anyway, I'm just sayin' that if I had a CHOICE I wouldn't be depending on recent defectors for squat. Certainly not to watch my back in a fight."

Irjin raises a hand to appease the increasingly irate worker's leader. "Gulda, these defectors aren't Burning Feather. They weren't involved in Earthcalm at all. In fact they've been indirectly supportive of the Freerunners in the City of Pasiap's Resolve for some time now. Kigal Alivia is a Talonlord and has promised us a group of up to a few hundred."

"As for the ex-monks, I don't have as much information - but the word is that they abandoned their former cause because they oppose slavery. And specifically the slavery of Celestials. We don't know yet whether they'll give any physical support against their Immaculate peers but they could offer us some vital intel on the best routes up to the Gatekeeper." The Freerunner leader rubs his chin thoughtfully, and glances to Higura and the other Celestials, now. "That's your true goal, isn't it? Given your temperaments... well... most of yours," he coughs conspicuously, "it's been assumed you're not going for total annihilation of the Temple, but to take over the Earth District Central Core. Am I right?"

Gulda splutters, nearly spitting out her drink at Klaxon, who doesn't quite duck it all. Grumbling, he wipes a bit of spit off his fur as she continues. "The central what? You mean the Gatekeeper? Can you even do that?" she gawks. "It's just a machine, right? Another one built by the Council and their engineers of death?"

"So we've been told," says her second, Rivanto, crossing his dark, scarred arms while leaning back against a wall. "But there's plenty of stuff I'm not as willing to believe as I used to be."
Gatekeeper
 GM, 1401 posts
 Exalted Storyteller
 Five Coils Artificer
Tue 20 Oct 2009
at 07:58
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
The gathered Freerunners don't seem to mind Immaculate Kestrel's muttering - the Edgestriders have worked with her before, after all - though not every one of the workers are accustomed to her habits. Of all of Gulda's group, Tukunen seems the least avoidant of her. The thaumaturge with blond hair watches her commune with the warehouse-spirit closely, spinning some form of talisman or coin between the fingers of his gloved hand.

As for 137 herself (female seems as good a gender as any) the being of innumerable bits of metal listens patiently to the sound of Immy's voice, emitting noises that vary between the click of metallic knitting needles and the soft yet unnerving sound of nails gently scraping a chalkboard. That's all anyone outside hears, as the words 137 speaks are broadcasted straight into the pink-haired girl's head.

This building has a good feeling. Many feet have passed through here, much work has been done and certainly metalwork is part of it. But I am not unhappy with you, Immaculate Kestrel. I would see more of the world before I settle again. I would like a house that is stable, peaceful and full of those who would shape metal to their needs.

The whirring of the nails and shards dancing about her takes on an inquisitive tone. But how might I join with your sword? My purview is meant for creation, not destruction. Though your sword is beautifully crafted, and it would not be an uncomfortable place. [Private to Immaculate Kestrel: I've no idea how this will work either! :D except that you could potentially get some benedictions and such from the small god's spirit charms. Something similar to what I gave Perian for his prayer-stunt, except lower powered, and narrower purview. I suppose somewhere up in Heaven there's people going "argh! what is she DOING! darn Celestials changing the filing..." ;)]
Saina Nanaret
 player, 234 posts
Tue 20 Oct 2009
at 09:51
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Nanaret nods when Irjin answers her, and listens carefully to the discussion, her lemur ears flicking toward each speaker like a cat's. She doesn't listen AND stand still, passing the time with a few stretching exercises that look too painful to be comfortable (not that she notices).

"Is good cause for wait. We have many workers here, but fewer fighters. Maybe defectors not be long term ally. But is not my concern. I am fighter, and so I fight. Whomever fight with me is friend, even if only for a time."

A mysterious smile crosses her face, then, as she turns her dark gaze toward Gulda. "You maybe not believe us either, Gulda Marin. But Doctor Higura and I and Third Beneficiary spoke with Water Gatekeeper. She look like woman, with many tentacle for legs. Many, many thousand year old, like Builder Bug Queen. We met her in sanctum that we open with our Essence. She tell us she was convinced Celestials went mad, that we dangerous, not worthy masters of her."

"And we show her the truth of what Council wanted. They try drown all who lived in Water District to make sure free Celestials stay dead. And with that, they get rid what they don't want. Poor and sick people, mutants and criminals, the Pit." Nanaret grits her teeth and clenches her hands. She still feels shame at her years as a collared gladiatrix, killing for the entertainment of the masses.

"Water Gatekeeper sided with us. That how we survive the Council's killers -- the Equalizers. That how we got here to Earth District at all. Xurizu was there too, he remembers."

This message was last edited by the player at 09:53, Tue 20 Oct 2009.

Yaishin Higura
 player, 170 posts
Tue 20 Oct 2009
at 18:36
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
"Nanaret speaks the truth, yes." Higura speaks, nodding his head softly as the woman says her part. He puts a hand on her shoulder as she reminisces her life in the Pit, catching the clenching of her fists at the mention of it. Others might not quite catch the gesture, but the Doctor has been there when she was nothing but a fighting machine - and knows of the guilt and shame she feels at the thought of those days, helpless thought she was.

"We spoke to the Gatekeeper of Water back when the Purge was put into effect. We managed to secure its help, and it will likely still prove to be an invaluable boon." Looking back towards Gulda and Irjin, the doctor smiles softly, removing his spectacles from his nose to clean them carefully. "The one thing that the Council and their followers do not want the populace to know is that they did not build the Gatekeepers. In fact, the AIs are much more ancient than people imagine. They predate the Council's reign, and thus they are secured allies, not slaves of the Council. The one thing that plays in our favor, however, is that this fact means the Gatekeepers have not forgotten their primary directives, either. They have collaborated with the current Coils administration in their takeover, but only because they were convinced that this was the best course of action for the Districts at the time."

Peering at the lenses of his spectacles, Higura places them on his nose again, nodding sharply. "That fact gives us an advantage, because this time, the balance of power has shifted once more. Though perhaps originally driven by concern, the current council is now showing worrying signs itself. Its approach is getting closer and closer to the cruelty that once led the Gatekeepers to accept that the rulers of the Coils needed to be stopped. And this is our chance to step in and regain the loyalty of the venerable AIs."

"Convincing one Gatekeeper was the most difficult part of this task. If we can manage to reach the Central Core of the Earth District, we can try to have the communications opened once more, and have the Gatekeeper of Water speak to its Earth brethren... Thus giving us extra credibility in our bid to secure its help."
Immaculate Kestrel
 player, 57 posts
 Pretty In Pink
Thu 22 Oct 2009
at 17:13
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
"Oh! Thank you. I built her myself, you know; I think she's actually a part of me, a little, just secretly; she, she came to me in dreams, a little, a bit at a time, and I try and I try but I know she's not yet done. This is only a shadow of her right now," and she lifts the sword from its scabbard, freshly oiled and gleaming, "but she's still not there, not yet, not halfway almost; something tells me I haven't even got the form right, the shape and steel, and I think I'll need to take her there, to get her perfect, before I can find the, the other things, the jade and silver and orichalcum to bring her to life again; and when she's alive and perfect I'll know she's done right." For a moment, the blade glimmers gold in the firelight, perfection dancing across it like a gossamer dream, but then she sheathes the sword again, steel into leather and oils, and the spell of that gleaming thing fades away into empty light.

"But that won't be for awhile, I know; I'm not strong enough for that yet, not yet, and there aren't any fires strong enough to make her down here. One day, maybe, and then she'll really be my sword again; but right now the map of her only lives inside me, and I can only hope I can learn to bring her out right." She grins, almost shy; she's been waiting, after all, for ages and ages and ages, and something has told her tells her is telling her that it is what she needs; a sword, a weapon, a harbringer, and it'd.... it'd.... well, it'd be wonderful, and it'd help her, and it'd work to bring her home. That was enough, right? "But--oh! You could help, right? You could help me build things; steel and gold, jade and silver; I could, I could, I could make a hammer for you, a good one, a strong one, with, with red jade to strike the fires and true gold to make it fine; and you could help me make that, too, right? You could help me design your house, and then after that we could help each other, and I'd carry you around with me forever and ever for as far as we go. Say yes?"
Gatekeeper
 GM, 1422 posts
 Exalted Storyteller
 Five Coils Artificer
Sun 15 Nov 2009
at 01:43
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
While Higura and Nanaret brief those unfamiliar with the events in Water District, the metalworks spirit listens to Immy's rambling with a vibrating metallic hum that she has decided means 137 is thinking.

You would bring me where I can inhabit a new home, build works of metal great and small? The nails and bolts rasp together, an excited but not entirely pleasant sound to sensitive ears. Again, only Immy hears the words implied. Then of course I will help you, Immaculate Kestrel, I will accompany you until the ends of the Coils. Deliver me home and forge and I can help you build what you wish.

A bold claim for the littlest of gods, but with her fortunes now tied to a Celestial, who knows what else is possible?
Gatekeeper
 GM, 1423 posts
 Exalted Storyteller
 Five Coils Artificer
Sun 15 Nov 2009
at 01:56
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Gulda Marin is caught up in her own shock and surprise, shaking her head incredulously as Higura concludes his explanations. "So... that's the real reason the Water District's supposedly under 'quarantine'? Because the Gatekeeper of Water essentially betrayed the Council, and the Gatekeepers are older than the oldest Terrestrial living on the fruits of our labor?" She gulps down more of the moonshine, the strong stuff clearing her sinuses as much as medicating her mind. "I'm still having a hard time even absorbing all this. Wow. The AIs might have their own agenda too. I wouldn't want to go from one tyrant to another, or have my job replaced by a machine..."

"But right now we'd best stick with what we can get," Irjin interjects, his gloved hand tapping the bar counter emphatically. "This is the first time, certainly the first recorded by the Freerunners, that we have a chance at overtly striking a blow against the Council's oppression -- and possibly make a lasting difference. There's plenty that'll come after once we make our move, given that we'll be kicking the legs right under the current framework of our society. It won't be easy. But it's progress, and not stagnation."

The discussion continues for some time. Higura, Nanaret and Xurizu find themselves answering plenty of questions from workers and Freerunners to clarify details about their escape from Water District, and all it entailed. Gulda continues to be amazed but skeptical, and Irjin attempts to provide a reasonable point of view, given that he openly admits the Freerunners were first conceived as a catalyst of social upheaval. What comes after, he says, depends on the winners.

Two hours later

Finally, a messenger steps through the door, a wiry girl with bright red hair cut in a short, cute style, her quarter-beast heritage showing through her wolf ears (the left-one notched) and tail. She wears a slender sword and a plasma tongue repeater on her hip.

"'Ey, Leader Irjin. And all you folks," she adds with a wave of her hand at the others. "The Boss's coming in with an army. Or somethin' like. Guess with a few hundred people you kin call it an army once there's weapons inn'er hands. Think he can set up in that big ol' clearing you've got in the middle of the buildings out 'ere?" Just as nonchalantly, the wolf-girl waves toward the door.

"Pixie," says Irjin, obviously recognizing the girl. "I assume Volya and Perian had a measure of success then." He looks around the common room, including Celestials and laborers alike as he says, "Come. We'll assemble outside and you'll see what we have to offer your cause."

[Private to Kares Perian: My next post, which I will write asap, is where Perian can step in.]

This message was last edited by the GM at 04:41, Sun 15 Nov 2009.

Gatekeeper
 GM, 1427 posts
 Exalted Storyteller
 Five Coils Artificer
Sun 15 Nov 2009
at 21:37
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Free Coils Army, Outside Base
18 Resplendent Water, RY 1085

Already, a sizable amount of people are gathering in the clearing Pixie indicated. Many of them are Freerunners. Along with numbers from the Edgestriders, there are others waving the banners of their pack: the Children of Libera Mori, the Aveska Oathkeepers, the Shadow Claws of Blackrend, and the Vigilant of the White Flame. (Irjin points each of these out to any of the Celestials accompanying him that don't know their names. But Immy would, as would Perian.)

At another section of the clearing, several rows of soldiers wearing Peace Force-issue gear are starting to gather. Led in by a brown-haired woman in a dark blue cloak and blue jade dragon armor, the defectors wear mainly ashigaru armor, with some scattered gunzosha and yoroi. They carry the typical shock pikes of the Forces; the Exalted or Essence-Enlightened among them also wear daiklaves or even sidearm cannons. Rather than Peace Force insignia, their banners display the winged cloud of the Sky-Seekers.

Not one to be upstaged, Gulda (accompanied by Rivanto) breaks away from the group of Celestials with Irjin to gather her own people. More crudely armed workers from the Industrial section have already come into the fold, bumping up their numbers toward the hundreds. They lack the discipline of trained soldiers, or the almost supernatural camaraderie of Free's packs, but they are all full of fight and full of enthusiasm to make a difference!

A large, hastily constructed stage of spare metal sheets and cinder blocks has been constructed at one end of the courtyard. Leaders among the disparate but united groups step up onto the platform, including Irjin Edgestrider, Volya Mori, Sable Blackrend, Talonlord Kigal Alivia and her assistant Najalin Verad. Joining them is a trio of what appear to be Immaculates, if one judges by their obvious Terrestrial bearing and their bald-shaven heads, though they do not wear the robes.

The final arrivals are heralded by the howl of a pack of wolves. Wolves, inside Coils, are such a rarity as to be an impossibility except in the artificial habitats of Wood District. Yet the noble silver-grey animals are here, twelve of them total, surrounding two figures that stand out prominently in their midst. One, a handsome pale haired man in a hooded cloak, keeps stride with a massive, powerfully built man with mismatched blue and golden eyes. The latter wears a black and white striped bodysuit and drags a heavy ball and chain attached to his ankle, as easily as if it were feather-light.

[Private to Kares Perian: Due to time constraints I've had to cut out the scene with Perian meeting Free. More or less, it was a short meeting to report what you've done, then gather the troops that will soon be joining the others in the Inner Temple. Free is committing a sizable amount of his 'Runners, and Alivia has brought a talon of the best troops she could bring to her side. The ex-Immaculates have decided to bring a smaller group, represented by the Wood Master Profound Arrow. Though not as numerous, their presence means that various traps and locked doors within the Inner Temple will be MUCH easier to surmount.

So I'm now squeezing together the uniting of the army to free Coils, along with the chance for other Celestials to meet Free, into what may well be a very short scene. Again, cause I want to move forward and not stagnate.

Assume you have all motes back, you can also roll Conviction to get back Willpower if you lost any.
]

This message was last edited by the GM at 17:49, Mon 16 Nov 2009.

Gatekeeper
 GM, 1428 posts
 Exalted Storyteller
 Five Coils Artificer
Sun 15 Nov 2009
at 21:47
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
The powerful, oddly dressed figure strides up to the raised platform while the wolves arrange themselves at the foot of it. His ball-and-chain smacks against the cinder-block steps, leaving sizable dents and cracks, but he does not stop until he has reached center stage, facing the group of 'Runners, soldiers, workers, Celestials and ex-Immaculates.

"Today, we are gathered under the uniting banner of FREEDOM for the Coils," he pronounces without further introduction. The odd-eyed man speaks in a booming, exaggerated voice, kicking up his iron ball only to seize it tightly in a large, meaty hand. "Today, the Inner Temple will be breached, the Earth Gate will be opened, and it will be because commoner, Terrestrial and Celestial cooperate for the first time in Coils history! Free Celestials, step forward and present yourselves, for this epic moment in history cannot be complete without YOU!"

His golden eye remains fixed solidly on the audience, but his blue one shifts toward Perian, indicating the more eloquent man can speak freely if he wishes.

[Private to Yaishin Higura; Immaculate Kestrel; Kilani Sorune; Saina Nanaret; Ledaal Xurizu: Introduce yourself to the army, or to Free, or both. Or if you're really that shy you can stay where you are, post a non-verbal reaction while Perian speaks first. I'd just like someone to post other than myself since I've already done 4 in a row. :D]
Kares Perian
 player, 79 posts
Mon 16 Nov 2009
at 08:56
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Following Free's cue, Perian steps forth and adresses the crowd. His voice carries easily, and his words remain clear and intelligible despite distance.

"I am Kares Perian, of the Freerunners. You may know me, or of me, by rumor or fact. Here, now, I will speak what truth I know, of what all of us here have done, and of what yet remains. And of myself, of course."

"I am one of the Chosen of the Sun. Yet I am neither monster nor tyrant. In that, as in much else, we have been ill taught by those who held the Coils.

"Yes, I mean held, for your, our effort, blood, and sacrifices have done what would not be otherwise possible. The people of the Coils are growing awake, discovering the taste of freedom once more, finding that hope is still possible. And where I and those like me could have abandoned you to die, to seek the surface while the corrupt assuaged their fears with your blood - we have chosen to stay, to help and protect."

"Eh. I hope you'll forgive me, I'm being overly talkative. Still, these facts remain, and matter. Together, we have pushed back Fire's first effort to cleanse Earth and destroy all within. Together, we stand a chance at freedom, to live, travel, work, as we will. But we have not won yet."

"Once before, when it seemed Water would fall, the powerful decided it was better to erase a District rather than lose their power. They failed, as other Celestials appealed to the Gatekeeper of Water, and convinced it to serve the people rather than the few. Now, the same threat is present - if they cannot drown freedom, then they will seek to have it collapse."

"Alone, none of us can prevent them. The have unbreakable walls, armies of dedicated monks, new and ancient devices of death. But together? That is what they fear the most. Not uncollared Celestials, no - people unified by a righteous cause."

"And that is why we must, we will prevail."


Perian pauses a moment, allowing his words ot sink in.

"I will not lie to you. Our foes will fight, and good people will die on both sides. But this is the only way I can see that will let you, us, be free. And that prize is worth the cost."
Yaishin Higura
 player, 171 posts
Mon 16 Nov 2009
at 19:47
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
When prompted to by the man he assumes to be Free, Higura casts a side glance to his other companions, then takes a step forward once Perian finishes his address. Among such powerful figures, the bespectacled man seems a bit out of place, looking more like a dignitary or functionary rather than the glorious figures spoken about by the leaders.

"My Lord Free, Mister Perian, assembled forces of Five Coils... I am Doctor Yaishin Higura. It is a pleasure to meet you all, especially under the current circumstances."

"Some time ago, I was a member of the Resplendent Assessors. My duties, as they were, was to use the connections I built with my patients to discourage dissidence, to remove thoughts of rebellion, or to signal to my superiors the cases where I did not succeed at either of these. Because of the collar I wore then, I was forced to spy on the people of Coils, and to report their behavior to the Coils Administration."

"This is a testament to the distrust the administration places in its own citizens, and it clearly puts one of the Leaders' weaknesses straight into view. Namely... As much as the Administration tries, through propaganda and intimidation, to make the people believe that they do not hold any power or strength, they are lying. What need would there be to spy on or try to discourage powerless people? What need would there be to use someone like me to assess the population's obedience if such thoughts would ultimately lead nowhere? The answer is simple, people of Coils. That is because for all their might and power, the Administration fears you. They understand better than anyone that cooperation and teamwork can move mountains - and they do not wish for you all to understand this fact."

Higura stops then, to let the crowd catch on. After a moment, he adjusts his spectacles on the bridge of his nose before continuing. "I was part of the group that spoke to the Gatekeeper of Water, as Mister Perian mentioned. I was also here with you during Operation Earthcalm, marching within your ranks against our common opposition. And yet, it is not I that has earned you this recent victory. Nor is it any individual Celestial who helped your cause. Unity brought you this victory, and that is something you should never forget."

"I would urge the lot of you to listen to Mister Perian's words, or at least consider them carefully. They are wise ones, and ones that will help channel your anger and your discontent. Desire for revenge and retribution only leads to a bloody path where one repeats the sins of the past. If tempered with righteousness and thirst for justice, however, these feelings of yours might just break the cycle, and usher in a new age, for you and your children."

Without waiting for the crowds' reactions, Higura bows quickly and takes a step back, leaving the place for anyone wishing to say something more, be it Perian, Free, or another one of his companions.

This message was last edited by the player at 19:50, Mon 16 Nov 2009.

Saina Nanaret
 player, 235 posts
Mon 16 Nov 2009
at 21:21
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Nanaret steps out onto the stage with Higura, clad in a dark blue form fitting catsuit that reveals her acrobatic musculature, sturdy black boots that give her a silent stride and snug black gloves. Over that, she is wearing her dark coat open, the one she had been wearing to hide her breastplate; now that she has the gunzosha armor, it's unnecessary except when she needs to be seen publicly without armor.

When the Doctor steps back, the wiry Lunar gazes at Free and Perian, her head inclining slightly but in no way indicating she wishes to be subservient. Then she turns toward the crowd of gathered soldiers with dark, scrutinizing eyes, her arms folded in front of her. "My name, Saina Nanaret. With collar on my neck, I was exploited as Gladiator of the Pit. Some of you may have seen me fight. For entertainment," and she raises a gloved hand, clenching it tightly, "I was forced to kill many. My opponents were twisted things. Mutants. Sometimes criminals, diseased. People that higher districts wish get rid of. The crowds cheered. Transfixed by thrill of the fight, by death of those too unfortunate to be named."

"There many to blame for this. Myself, for I could not fight strong enough alone to avoid the collar. The Council and people who serve them, who allow atrocities to happen. Both the Pit AND the experiments that make mutants are abominations. The Pit was just trash heap for rejects to die, and I was made butcher." Did Nanaret's eyes just flare yellow when she spoke these words? Her jaw clenches, and she almost finds it difficult to continue. But she takes a deep breath, plunging further into her revealing speech.

"I do not like to speak of it. But is also the crowds who give into apathy, who are to blame. Those who stop believing there is chance to make things better. To put a stop to slavery, slaughter, human experiments. No, they think, better not to care. To medicate with pleasure, thrill and drug. Hundreds, thousands of people do this. And thus nothing changed."

"I not wish to stay in Coils, if ever we reach the sky. But if you truly believe in this cause," and her eyes gaze around her, sweeping over the workers, the soldiers, the Immaculates, even the other Celestials nearby, "then prove it. Make this prison a worthy home. However you fight, fight. And never tell yourself you will be happier not to try."

After that uncommon moment of inspiration and eloquence (for her, at least), Nanaret falls silent and stands by Higura. He can feel her trembling slightly, but she holds her chin high.
Kilani Sorune
 player, 83 posts
 Chosen of Battles
 "Can't we all get along?"
Tue 17 Nov 2009
at 11:17
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Surrounded by the numerous other powerful and brave celestial, the thin slip of a red-robed girl standing to the side, looking almost frail and weary, barely seems a part of the ceremony. But when the call goes forth for Celestial Exalted, she is among those to stand and step forward. Each before her receives a respectful focus from her tired brown eyes, and she stands at a relaxed stance.

As Nanaret spoke, the girl's eyes closed, and she lowered her head, visibly swallowing as she stepped forward, moved to speak, but out of her element. The girl had a false start or two before she began again, clearly enough for her voice to carry. She wore no armor, bore no weapon, and barely touched the height of her companion Celestials. Yet her honest words and work-weary demeanor commanded a certain respect nonetheless;

"I... ah... Everyone..."; She coughed once, cleared her throat, her cheeks flushing visibly to her fellow Celestials, her expression a little lost. Oration wasn't even among her weak points, it was something she barely knew, but words wanted to come now. The audience was captive to Celestial Exalted, and.... though she had never once wielded that nature to an end, now it would lend her words a weight they could never have held before.

As she managed to focus herself, lifting her eyes above the crowd, she spoke once more. "T-Thank you, Nanaret..." A sigh. A breath. She could do this, it was important! "My name is Kilani Sorune, and I am not like these other great Celestials." she began, her gut coiling into knots. "I'm not a great speaker, or a hero or a warrior. I'm... like most any person. I don't want to see people die..." She lowered her head gently.

"When I wore the Collar of the Dragon-Blooded, I only rarely needed its use to do what I was for. I was taken as a doctor, and even became a Chief Medical Officer for a Peace Force unit. I didn't truly understand who or what I was.... am..." She inhaled deeply. "I believed them when they cautioned me that my powers could hurt people. And I stayed with them so I could save their lives. I, too, am a healer... Hurting is not in my nature, even as a Chosen of Mars."

"Some of you were there when I was forced to fight you. But I am free now." She spoke with a surprising burst of strength. Her chin lifted, a shimmer of light from the flow of tears along her cheeks. At her sides, both of Kilani's hands had coiled into fists, soft skin on the end of willowy-frail limbs. "But I am sorry to any whom I hurt. I have been working nonstop to make right that mistake where I can."

Kilani glanced aside to her fellow Celestials, faltering. Seeing them standing so brave and tall gave her strength to go with the fire she had felt, and she stepped forward another step. "I can't promise that I can lead you to the surface of this world. I can't promise that everyone will reach the sky we long to see. I wish everyone could!"

She glanced aside to Nanaret, and  made a grateful smile, before she called out to the waiting masses; "But I can promise you this! We will reach the skies one day! One day you will feel the sunrise on your faces! Feel the true breath of Mela, not the artificial, corrupt air of this place! One night, we will all look up and see the stars! This isn't rhetoric or metaphor.... I have seen it in my dreams." She blushed deeply, head still held up. "I have seen the sky, not as it is now, not as I imagine it to be, but I have seen the very real sky, thousands of stars, the constellations. In my dreams!" She called out. "And one day, I will be there to see them for real! And I will bring everyone of you who I can with me!"

Kilani stepped back, to take a position beside Nanaret, but as she fell into step, she inched back slightly, half-standing behind the taller, more powerful woman. Her face was as red as her robes, teeth delicately resting on her lower lip. She was still a ball of nerves, any grace she held at this stemming solely from her passion.

[Private to GM: 2 Successes Charisma+Performance, no stunt counted]

This message was last edited by the player at 11:19, Tue 17 Nov 2009.

Ledaal Xurizu
 player, 219 posts
 No Moon Lunar
 Sorcerer and Test Subject
Tue 17 Nov 2009
at 15:38
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Xurizu doesn't present himself to the crowd.  It wasn't his way, wasn't something he was comfortable with.  Especially not admitting what he had done, not to so many people at once, collar which had been on his neck or no.  There was too high a chance someone there would remember a barbed guillotine flying through the air, someone acting oddly just before they killed themselves, someone found in a locked room with their throat slit.  To high a chance he'd be burdened with the guilt of something he didn't even remember.

Many of the crowd wouldn't even notice he was there, a nondescript figure in grey, approaching Free whilst Nanaret and Kilani spoke.   "Greetings, Free," he says, respectfully inclining his head.  "I am Ledaal Xurizu.  I am a sorcerer," an assassin, "I hope that we will get a chance to talk about such things, when the district is more secure," he says simply.  Then he withdraws, back to somewhere where he won't spoil all this talk of heroism.
Gatekeeper
 GM, 1438 posts
 Exalted Storyteller
 Five Coils Artificer
Wed 18 Nov 2009
at 09:01
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
The gathered army, patchwork as it may be, listens to the courageous and encouraging words of the Celestials that introduce themselves one by one. The reactions are varied but predominantly positive.

By the end of it, Gulda Marin's workers are cheering loudly and enthusiastically, clapping and stomping their feet, pumped to get started on their first united push toward justice and freedom.

The Freerunners glance at one another, nodding approvingly at all they have heard. Many of them applaud heartily, thrust their fists into the air and howl! The descendants of Free and his supporters have waited generations for a chance such as this.

The ex-Peace Force soldiers are not as easily moved, knowing that they are willingly walking into a dangerous, and traitorous prospect: betraying the Council, and their own people, for the sake of ideals and a distant sky. Still, there is a smattering of applause from them, and many solemn salutes. Even Kigal Alivia, their Talonlord leader, nods sharply with approval at the sentiments expressed, particularly concerning the growing corruption of the Council's actions. Next to her, Verad makes hasty notes on the speeches, his pen flying across his black bound journal.

Only the few ex-Immaculates Perian negotiated with, led by Wood Master Profound Arrow, offer neither cheers nor applause. The Terrestrial monks bow their shaven heads in prayer -- whether for strength or for forgiveness for what they will soon do, one may never know.
Gatekeeper
 GM, 1439 posts
 Exalted Storyteller
 Five Coils Artificer
Wed 18 Nov 2009
at 09:02
Re: Floor B23 - City of Pasiap's Resolve, South Sector 5
Free steps in abruptly before Immy can show up. (And where is she? Not a pink head of hair in the crowd. If she stayed where everyone left her, then she's still communing with that cloud of nails.) A big-toothed grin spreads across his tattooed face as he weighs his iron ball in one hand.

"Bravo, BRAVO!" he shouts, his golden eye swiveling erratically in its socket. "Now THOSE are the words I've been hoping to hear. This is your Freedom, ladies and gentlemen, this is your moment to seize! For I have always been Free. I entered this prison to leave it by my own power. But YOU, all of you were born into this reality, your eyes sewn shut. Now they are open. Now you have chosen uncertainty over stability. Rebellion over lawfulness. Painful truth over comfortable lies!"

With a grunt and a mighty flex of his muscles, Free tugs sharply at the chain attached to his ankle... and snaps it. "Now you are Free as I am. In mind, though not in body. In heart, though not in home. The rest is for you to make happen, though blood, sweat and tears you may spill. And I!" He pounds his sinewy chest with the loose iron ball and chain, not so much as flinching at the impact. "Will bleed, toil and weep beside you."

His head jerks abruptly to stare at the Celestials that have spoken, besides Perian. "If I had time, I would speak with every one of you. I will learn more about you. If fate is willing, yes, I WILL teach you what I know. But first!"

"Listen to me. Right now, six more brave Celestials are breaking through to the Sanctum of the Inner Temple. That bastion of Immaculate belief has stood for CENTURIES, denying your ascendants and you passage to the world above! We, the Free Coils Army and our allies, are in prime position to breach the Temple through this floor. Together, WE can help clear the way to the Gatekeeper of Earth! All you must do is answer one simple question."

Free gestures broadly, including the patchwork army sprawled before him. "Are. You. With. Us!?"

The response is a thunderous roar of assent that shakes the entire Sector, resounding through the streets as word of mouth passes like wildfire. It is time for the liberation of Earth District to begin.



OOC: As explained earlier, I assumed some decisions so that we could fast forward through tedious traps and battles. Therefore, this thread will now close. You will meet with all PCs in 'Floors B25-B22 - Inner Temple, Central Column' once I have finished narrating how everyone gets there.

This message was last edited by the GM at 12:30, Wed 18 Nov 2009.