Gielnors Last Stand - The Future

/ By Vossler [+Watch]

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Richard nodded. "That will most defenitly put the RPOG in a tough position. It will also make them want to fight The Arc even more." He pulled out a cigarette that had a red filter. "Just give me a throwing knife. Preferrably one of those ones with the red gem on the hilt...That's what The Arc uses nowadays and it will make the murder seem more believable." He smirked and waited for Corpus' to hand him the materials for the assassination.

[h3 [b [i [center Josephs House]]]]

Joseph was an elderly man from Nernias, he was a man of Italian and Spanish lineage. He had a grey goatee and short grey hair to go with it. He was sitting down on a leather recliner staring deep into a stone fireplace. Joseph dialed Nerres number on his phone and waited for an answer but Nerre wasn't there. "Nerre, Ganzu needs to see you early in the morning tomorrow...Apparently a student snuck onto the school grounds and climbed all the way up to the top of the school itself and jumped off of it. They found drugs in their system, and an I.D." Joseph took a sip of his coffee and continued. "Her name was Karla Faris. They say it was Green Lightning. I think she was one of your students right? Kalas will also be with Ganzu. Meet them at the Departed Souls Morgue." Joseph hung up after leaving the voicemail and sat his phone down on the coffee table in front of him.

[h3 [b [i [center Phoenix Town Castle]]]]

"Sir, you got your results back from the hospital." Mason, Destos butler said.

Desto just sat in his throne chair staring at the long hallway entrance in front of him that held many rooms. "It's terminal isn't it?"

Mason looked down and sighed. "Yes Sir...It is."

Desto only let out a chuckle. "A brain tumor...How funny is that?..." He stood up but combined with his old age and illness he trembled. "No one but the doctors and people inside these walls must know about this. No one Mason." He had help sitting back down.

"Understood Sir." Mason bowed down to King Desto and walked off.
  Arcanus Arcanum / HEAD ES PROGRAMMER / Vossler / 1y 357d 17h 23m 20s
The cinders drifted away from the balcony rail, fading into the street below. Nerre looked down, putting out his cigarette. It was only his third over the last week, and he had extinguished it far from the filter. In spite of his other problems, Nerre had lost interest in smoking. Perhaps, he thought, it was time to quit. He procured the carton from his coat pocket, and replaced the half smoked cigarette. Staring at the packaging for a moment, he made up his mind, casually tossing it over the guardrail and onto the road beneath him. Nerre abhorred littering, but loved symbolism.

Dressed in a faded grey hoodie and some fake trainers, a young man looked down at the cream-coloured box that landed at his feet, then up at the white-haired man on the third-floor balcony. In spite of the distance, the two made eye contact, and immediately lit a spark of recognition between the two.

"You can have them if you want," Nerre called out. "There's fourteen left."

The young man crouched down and examined the box for a moment before opening it and checking its contents. Fourteen and a half cigarettes. He looked up and tried to call thanks, but Nerre was no longer stood on the balcony. Bemused, he pocketed the cigarettes, and leisurely carried on down the street. It was not long before Nerre had caught up to him.

"Hey."

"Hello."

Nerre smiled amicably.

"You sold me some F at the eastern Tower festival a couple months ago, right?"

The young drug dealer looked awkwardly from side to side - since blackout day, the Royal Police had been collectively breathing down everyone's necks, and the volume of drugs flowing into Phoenix Town had slowed to a trickle. It was impossible to get a hold of any Fairy Dust. All he had was...

"... I was wondering if you were selling any of this shit." Nerre said coolly, procuring the bag of green powder that had been the focus of his attention for the last day.

The young dealer looked around, concerned. "Woah. That's quite lot. Yeah. I'm your guy."

He gestured towards an alley some twenty feet away.

"Meet me there in half an hour, and I'll give you what you need."

Nerre nodded and turned back, as if to return to his apartment, but then paused shortly after. The dealer carried on, unaware that the white-haired professor was now quietly following him from the other side of the road. South downtown was relatively quiet, as had been the case for a while following blackout day. People were afraid to go out, concerned that the so-called "Arc" was watching them. This made tailing the dealer very difficult, as there was little in terms of crowds to blend into. Nerre often found himself disappearing into shop fronts and intentionally jogging through roundabout routes that would lead him back into the dealer's range, but after about a quarter hour of his clandestine efforts, the dealer arrived at a small warehouse. Reaching a small side door, the dealer knocked, three times, and said something to the person behind the metal door, perhaps a service entrance, or a fire escape. The door opened slightly, then all the way, and the dealer disappeared into the darkness within. Not wanting to get caught watching, Nerre made a mental note of the warehouse's location and headed back to the alley.

It was early evening, but it felt like night in the small pathway. The bitter stench of piss and spilled beer stung Nerre's nostrils, and it seemed to serve only as a space between two buildings. Graffiti crept up the walls like frost, and Nerre lamented the lack of an easy way out. The entrance was the exit. He hoped the dealer would come alone. Fortunately for Nerre, he did.

"You're late." Nerre muttered, looking at his wrist. He wasn't wearing a watch.

"Shut up. I've got the product." the dealer said, reaching under the waistband of his pants and procuring a smaller bag of the shimmering chartreuse powder.

"Cool. Who's your supplier?" Nerre asked, playing with his hair.

"That's none of your business." the dealer snapped, hostile.

Nerre smiled, coyly. "Oh, I guess I'll have to go to the abandoned Advanced Systems warehouse and ask them myself, then? What was it, three knocks?"

The dealer put his hands in his pockets, a thin attempt at hiding the fact they were shaking.

"What do you want? I can't afford to give you this shit for free."

"No, I'll pay." Nerre replied, pulling out a disposable holocoin card - popular among tourists and clandestine drug users, who wished to maintain a secret identity. "Of course, I know how terrible it'd be for you if your supplier were to discover that one of their street-level pushers had accidentally disclosed the location of their warehouse. No. Just tell me what I want to know, and I'll be on my way."

The dealer paused, pondering his options, then smiled back at Nerre.

"I think I have a better idea."

Nerre barely had the time to catch the flash of a blade as the dealer lunged at him. The professor elegantly weaved to one side, catching the man's skinny wrist and throwing a precise right hook at the man's face. As his head snapped back, Nerre twisted his arm violently, causing the knife to come clattering down onto the concrete. Not knowing what was going on, the dealer was brought to his knees, his right arm held awkwardly behind his back. He scrambled for the knife, but it was casually kicked away by Nerre's pointed formal shoe before he could reach it. He winced in pain as his arm, now locked in place, was pushed into an unbearable position.

"I will break it." Nerre hissed, short on patience. "Tell me. What is this shit and who do you work for?"

"I don't know!" he cried out, desperate.

"Don't lie to me." Nerre spat, twisting the arm to breaking point. The dealer strained, tears streaming down his red face.

"Phoenix Labs!" he screamed. Nerre let him go, kicking him onto his side. "I get the product from Phoenix Labs. It's a new product. There's some Green Lightning in there, but I don't know what it's laced with. They cut it before they give to me. I don't know where it comes from, fuck." he spluttered through gasps of pain, clutching his limp arm. Nerre stared down at him, blankly.

"Are you sure you don't know anything else?"

"They call it Limelight."

"Heh. Clever. Okay, good."

Nerre crouched down, touching his holocard against the RFID reader implanted in the dealer's forearm, and picked up the bag of Limelight that had fallen to the ground during the struggle.

"I'll hold onto this," he said, stuffing the drugs into his pocket. "I suggest you forget where I live. Should any uninvited guests appear at my apartment, I'll kill them, and then I'll kill you." Nerre winked slyly at the his crumpled adversary, and hurriedly left the alley.

The drug peddler slowly struggled to his feet, waiting for his phone to notify him of the transaction that had just taken place, but the message didn't come. He pulled it from his pocket, dismayed at the message on the screen.

"Transaction failed. Holocard reader error."

Today was not his day.
  nerre. / Tengu / 1y 357d 16h 32m 17s
Corpusraptor smiled as the new arrival came in, her petite hands clasped together. [#131313 [b "It is good of you to come. I trust you'll be more useful to me than the previous mercenary. He... wasn't able to live up to his fame."]] Corpusraptor gestured to the corpse, whose head was crumpled like a wet paper bag, skull fragments and brain trailed behind giving the appearance of a picture of a fountain, all from a single gunshot.

[#131313 [b "But you're not like him. You're not afraid to get your hands dirty. Your MO is consistent for many killings, and you've been convicted on charges in the past. You're the genuine article, and I'm sure we can arrange some sort of long-term deal that will be most beneficial to both of us. I have much use for a cold-hearted killer such as yourself."]] Corpusraptor's lips pursed as she smiled widely, revealing her sharp, mechanical teeth like a huge shark-grin.

[#131313 [b "But you're here for the mission, of course. If successful, we may have more dealings in the future."]] Corpusraptor paused for a moment, before explaining the mission. [#131313 [b "I'm sure you've seen that tensions between Gielnor and the Arcane Clan are growing more in recent times, yes? After that last terrorist attack by them, the people of Gielnor are looking for any reason to go to war. And I say we give it to them."]]

[#131313 [b "You see, the thing about war is that it can be quite profitable for people that know how to benefit from it. When the public is afraid of predators from afar, they pay less attention to those already lurking near them. When the police and military are stretched thin, they have less power to maintain order. When resources are getting shipped to frontlines by the many, it is easy for logistics to... mess up. That state of chaos and panic would be the perfect time for someone with the right know-how to expand their power base, don't you think?"]] Corpusraptor explained, choosing her words carefully.

[#131313 [b "Now, we have a great power here. Greater than all the money in the world. We have the element of secrecy. The gov doesn't know about us. Arc doesn't know about either. So we can strike from the shadows without anyone being the wiser. We can control information, control thoughts, control public opinion, on quite a wide scale, without using a bit of magic. And I say we should rile them up. The people of Gielnor just need to be stabbed in just the right spot. And you're just the right person..."]]

[#131313 [b "I want you to make the king of Gielnor, King Desto... disappear. I want him gone. Erased. Rubbed out. And I want the very palace guards to swear upon their ancestors' graves that it was the Arcane Clan who did it. I will provide you with weapons, disguise, and a getaway driver. As I said before, pay is five times whatever your usual rate is. It will be delivered after the mission is completed, in holocoins. Do we have a deal?"]]

_
[b Characters
[#131313 #131313] = Corpusraptor
[#bf1111 #bf1111] = Dr. Fanswick (Deceased)
[#34af92 #34af92] = Hired Mercenary (Deceased)
[#17a1a9 #17a1a9] = Phoenix Laboratories Security Guard 1
[#2c93af #2c93af] = Phoenix Laboratories Security Guard 2
[#a3a3a3 #a3a3a3] = Dr. Sarah White
  Corpusraptor / ShadowOfSkills / 1y 360d 1h 49m 24s
Lilly had sighed as she had gotten an update on the bounties and saw the prize target of them all still rising "I have got to find him first" she said as she started to sit up again "I can't just sit around.." she said though her body wanted to hit the bed again . moving down to the lobby she asked for some coffee and sat there waiting she had her things next to her not having much on her she was others in the lobby a night race she haven't seen any of them before . she sipped her coffee to wake her self up before she left out she checked out and left heading on the streets going to Phoenix Town.
  Lilly / EternalSnow / 1y 363d 8h 4m 37s
Perhaps it was time to make a few phone calls. It was always time to make a few phone calls after all. Perhaps he'd call his therapist, too. It had been far too long since the last time they spoke, and the messages she had left for him had gotten shorter and shorter.

"Dr. Kiwanuka; it's Kate Nair from the psychiatric care department. I'm delighted by the progress we're making. I think together, we can beat this. I hope you're doing well. I understand you're away on business right now, so please get back in touch with me when it suits you. Thanks!"

"Dr. Kiwanuka. It's Dr. Nair. It's been a few weeks since your last appointment. I hope you're well, I know how busy it gets around this time of year. Call me when you're free."

"Nerre, I know you're getting these, I spoke to Paul from your department last week. I'm here for you, call me. Kate."

"Nerre, there's a rumour you passed out drunk in the atrium. Please tell me it isn't you. Call me. Kate."

"Nerre, call me. Please. Kate."

Yes, he'd have to call her at some point or another. But not right now, as there was science to be done. Nerre glanced at the confiscated cache of green powder he'd kept for himself. Dangerous stuff, and not the kind of trip he wanted to experience again. He picked up the phone.

“Hello, this is Dr. Kiwanuka from the Agriculture department… Yes, that’s right. I’ve come across a pretty large sample of green lightning on campus. I’m a little concerned about how safe it is. Yes. Yes, of course. Uh huh. Yes. Okay, thanks. I’ll bring it in later.”

Nerre hung up and made himself another line, before changing his mind and brushing the green powder back into the bag. Whatever this drug was, he had a bad feeling about it. He got to his feet and made his way over to the balcony, where he leant over and lit a cigarette, staring at the streets below.
  nerre. / Tengu / 2y 2d 6h 35m 20s
Richard nodded. He hung up. He had a chip in his cell phone that made it untraceable by anybody. He got on his hover-cycle and pressed put his hands on the handlebars that were built to start the vehicle automatically once it recognized the owner. Richard drove off towards the location that Corpus gave him.

[h3 [b [I [center Gielnor Advanced Systems Warehouse #721, South Downtown - South Phoenix Town]]]]

He arrived and nodded towards the guards who tried to stop him. “I have a meeting with Dr. Sarah White.”

The guards sighed and backed away and opened the door for Richard who walked in.

He soon arrived where Corpus was and bowed. “A pleasure to meet you Corpus. So, what is this job you wanted me to do?” He smirked.
  Arcanus Arcanum / HEAD ES PROGRAMMER / Vossler / 2y 7d 4h 49m 49s
[b [#131313 "I've got an important mission for you."]] Corpusraptor said into her phone, calling up another mercenary, someone named Richard. [b [#131313 "I understand you are rather skilled, yes? It will be a dangerous mission. Whatever your usual rate is, I will pay five times it. Meet me in the Gielnor Advanced Systems Warehouse #721, located in South Downtown. If the guards try to stop you, tell them you have a meeting with Dr. Sarah White of Phoenix Laboratories. They will be instructed to let you in."]]

Corpusraptor reclined on a chair next to the cadaver of the previous mercenary, and proceeded to make several more phone calls, including one to a particuar head of operations.

[b [#131313 "I'd like a status report on your operation. Yes, right now."]] Corpusraptor said impatiently. [b [#131313 "I ordered the drug to be delivered to the dealers two hours ago. I haven't seen any changes to the related bank accounts, and I know damn well that this isn't because kids don't want to buy drugs."]]

[b [#131313 "What do you mean the runners didn't make it? They were caught?"]] Corpusraptor clenched her mechanical teeth. [b [#131313 "You're proving to be more trouble than you are worth. You don't want to be a liability now, do you? I'm going to be sending an enforcer down there. You better not fail me Mitch, or your grandma is going to be opening a box with your head inside."]]

Corpusraptor closed her untracable cell phone and sat, waiting for her mercenary to arrive.

_
[b Characters
[#131313 #131313] = Corpusraptor
[#bf1111 #bf1111] = Dr. Fanswick (Deceased)
[#34af92 #34af92] = Hired Mercenary (Deceased)
[#17a1a9 #17a1a9] = Phoenix Laboratories Security Guard 1
[#2c93af #2c93af] = Phoenix Laboratories Security Guard 2
[#a3a3a3 #a3a3a3] = Dr. Sarah White
  Corpusraptor / ShadowOfSkills / 2y 15d 3h 37m 1s
Opening her eyes Lilly at the clock frowning before she opened her phone answering it "What do you want this time" she said in slowly sitting up her hair her eyes her hat on the stand [#ab2b62 "Oh did I wake the huntress"] a males voice could be heard through the other side letting out a laugh "Nooo I was just waking up .. of course i was sleep now asura what is it"

[#ab2b62 "Well i was calling you letting you know that we have your payment from your last job and was thinking you could use a new one to keep you busy as to not get board turns out there are some people in that city your in what would peek your interest"] as he spoke Lilly pulled her hair out of her looking a bit more awake "Keep talking ...I'm listening"

[#ab2b62 "Well then you search around the town that's all i telling you] *click*

"Ugggh that jerk right when i thought he had something interesting to say" she said flopping back on her bed sighing with a slight pout on her face "now i'll have to start looking in the morning"

Normal - Lilly
[#ab2b62 Asura] - #ab2b62
  Lilly / EternalSnow / 2y 18d 1h 55m 55s
A man who was dressed in a white suit and fedora stood under lone street lamp in Central Phoenix Town. He wore sunglasses and had short dark hair along with a stubble beard. This man called himself Richard. He was a known convict from a high security prison far from the continent of Gielnor. This prison was it's own island not far from Amarthene. Richard was released on good behavior and changed his name. "Yeah I got you." he said on a burner cellphone. "With The Arc resurfacing after so many years we finally got a chance..." He hung up and broke the phone. The man he was talking to was unknown, even to him. Richard stood there waiting for another call from someone else.

[h3 [b [i [center Gielnor Hall of Records]]]]

A few guards were patrolling the area as usual every night to make sure no one broke in or vandalized the place.

[b [+blue "Hey, you know that I heard that this place holds some ancient history man...Even from The Dark Age."]] One of the guards patrolling the front entrance said.

The other guard replied. [b [+red "Yeah I bet. It would be cool to go through Old Gielnor and see the great city Gaelis but thanks to that dragon...Uh, what was it's name?"]]

[b [+blue "Saarbas I think...I don't think that was him though. That dragon was red and black, this dragon was just pure fucking black. Heard it breathed out this black smoke that was toxic...Turned the people who were unlucky enough to leave Old Gielnor into these damn zombie like beings called Dark-Stalkers. That's why Old Gielnor is so damn hard to get through without proper lighting. The dragons smoke just stayed there and made it all foggy like."]]

An RPOG soldier walked up and saluted the two guards.

"Hello Sir!" The two guards said to the soldier and saluted him back.

[b [+purple "Hello...Gentlemen..."]] The soldier said, almost as if he was reading from a script. [b [+purple "May I come through?"]] he asked.

The two guards looked at eachother. [b [+blue "Sorry Sir, we can't let anyone in. Kings orders."]]

[b [+purple "The King gave me permission..."]] the soldier said, almost sounding robotic.

[b [+red "Sorry Sir, but can you please contact him? We need to hear it from him."]]

The soldier slowly nodded and reached in his pocket. He quickly pulled his hand out and grabbed one of the guards face and disintegrated him. He grabbed the other guard quickly as well and did the same before slowly walking up the steps and fumbling with the knob before turning it and opening the door and going inside.

Two creatures crawled towards the ashes of the dead soldiers. These creatures were invisible but could make themselves visible if they wanted to. They burrowed through the ashes as the ashes slowly rose up and formed a human shape and the two guards bodies were formed again. This time under possession of the strange creatures. [b [+orange "Hello...Hello..."]] the "guard" said in a monotone voice. It gave a half smirk and slowly moved it's left arm up and down. The other guard did the same.

Two other guards who were patrolling the back came to check up on them. They saluted eachother and the two guards that were patrolling the back went to do their job.

[b [+green "At least we know the salute perfectly."]] the other guard said in the same monotonic voice.

Normal Text - Richard

[b [+blue - Left guard at the front entrance]]

[b [+red - Right guard at the front entrance]]

[b [+purple - Possessed/Dead RPOG Soldier]]

[b [+orange - Possessed/Dead Left Guard at the front entrance]]

[b [+green - Possessed/Dead Right Guard at the front entrance]]
  HEAD ES PROGRAMMER / Vossler / 2y 19d 22h 5m 28s
Nerre's apartment was about as barren as humanly possible. A futon, messily shoved into the corner, besides a large set of glazed doors opening out into a balcony with nothing on it. Piles of books strewn about the room, but no bookshelf. A small laptop computer plugged into an outlet on the wall; not presently working. South Phoenix Town, while playing host to some of the more affluent denizens of the city, had been hit hard by Blackout Day, and frequent blackouts were par for the course. Nerre had checked on the old lady living two floors down before returning to his apartment. He'd manage without the magical energy flowing through his apartment, but his neighbours may not be so fortunate. She seemed okay, perhaps a little intimidated by the tall dark man claiming no ulterior motive, so he left her to her own devices.

Nerre didn't own much else. An old rice cooker he'd bought at a market stall shortly after arriving in Phoenix Town, which had loyally followed him from one apartment to another over the last decade, a little gas heater, which he had lent to the aforementioned old lady, a beautiful red sash given to him by his old master, and his cello. Nerre used to collect records, but in an intoxicated rage, he'd destroyed them all for reasons he couldn't remember. The studio apartment had, in fact, been furnished when he moved in, but he didn't like the decor, so he sold it all, giving away whatever he couldn't sell. He'd told himself he'd replace the furniture immediately, but he had been busy with work, and before he knew it, a year had passed. He begun making excuses to not bring women back to his apartment, [i "your place or mine,"] swiftly being replaced with [i "let me walk you home."]

Nerre wondered if he was depressed before remembering the baggie of green powder he had confiscated earlier. Reaching into his coat pocket, he was surprised to notice his recent acquisition was giving off a dull glow in the darkness of his apartment. Hanging up his coat on the door, Nerre slid open the french door and stepped out into the cool air of the balcony. Glancing around to make sure the neighbours weren't watching, he laid out a short line on the balustrade, cutting it neatly with his holocoin card.

With a slow, long inhalation, Nerre let his worst vice get the better of him. Tossing the rest of the drugs onto the futon, he looked out into central Phoenix Town from his vantage point, the cold blue glow of a city fuelled by magical energy slowly beginning to warp and spiral before his eyes. Nerre found himself overcome by a strong sense of elation as his pupils began to dilate and his heart started to beat with a glorious intensity. The sights and sounds of the city grew more intense until, as it reached a glorious crescendo, Nerre was pulled away instantly, like a clap of thunder. Over in seconds. That's why they called it Green Lightning.

Nerre went back into his apartment, and lay down on the futon, staring at the ceiling. Too early to go to sleep, but too dark to read a book without working lights. The stairwell outside had emergency lighting, perhaps he could nestle into a corner and read there. No, that was more effort than he was willing to muster.

[i "Better to be alone with my thoughts,"] Nerre thought to himself, closing his eyes.

"Pathetic," replied the voice of a woman.

Nerre tried to sit up, suddenly terrified by the prospect of an intruder.

"Don't worry, Nerre. It's only me." A dark figure loomed overhead. A woman, athletic build. About five foot seven, medium length hair. She spoke with a peculiar, unique accent. One that was all too familiar.

"Master?" Nerre found himself asking the apparition.

"I'm not your master any more."

"You never told me your name."

"It's ███," she replied, her name obscured by a deafening blast of silence, "such a waste. My best student. A brilliant mind surpassed only by an all-consuming ego."

"I could have beaten you, had you not abandoned me."

"No you couldn't."

She was right. She had trained him well, and hard. Nerre's fists flowed like a river and crashed like a waterfall, and his body had been hardened by months of intense drilling, always pushed slightly beyond his limit. But as Nerre grew stronger and faster, his nameless master effortlessly danced around his fists and left him on his back, every time. It was not a lack of effort - Nerre had put aside his studies to learn to fight - and it was certainly not a lack of strength. She was simply better than him.

"You're pathetic, Nerre Kiwanuka. Pathetic and weak. Weak, pathetic, dumb baby," she spat, mockingly. "Lying on the floor of this drab apartment, no closer to any solutions. Stealing drugs from children. You [i sicken] me."

This was uncharacteristic for his master. She was typically a woman of few words, distant and aloof, but not cruel. Nerre wanted to reply, venomously. He wanted to curse at her and eject her from his apartment, but he couldn't disrespect his master. Not any more. He sat, bolt upright. If he could just see her face, he could just...

... Nerre was alone. He looked down at the small plastic bag, a few lines left, and his sense slowly returned to him. The ghostly visitor retreated back to the distant recesses of his mind from where he had summoned her. He was drenched in cold sweat.

Whatever this drug was, it was not ordinary Green Lightning.
  nerre. / redeemer / 2y 20d 23h 55m 30s
The Gielnor Advanced Systems Warehouse #721 had been abandoned for over a decade. There were plans from the Phoenix Town to remove it as part of a gentrification effort, but before they could it had been purchased by Phoenix Laboratories own Dr. Sarah White. What they did not know was that Dr. Sarah White was just one of many aliases of Corpusraptor, and Phoenix Laboratories was a front operation. The building may have been given a fresh coat of paint, but it was still as rundown as it had been, just now it is crawling with security instead of being completely abandoned. The security were owned by Phoenix Laboratories, being payed on freshly laundered holocoin.

[b [#17a1a9 "Hey... have you ever wondered why this place is so important to the guys upstairs?"]] one security guard asked another.

[b [#2c93af "No idea. We both know there's nothing valuable in here. Just be glad they aren't making sudden budget cuts again. Remember my friend Larry I told you about? I hear he got laid off without so much as a warning."]] the other guard replied somberly.

[b [#17a1a9 "That's terrible. I didn't know they were cutting back people at the main branch."]] the first guard said, slightly alarmed.

[b [#2c93af "Yeah, but human resources is hiring on more people like there's no tomorrow. Overpaid pigs."]] the second guard said angrily.

Before the conversation could continue, Corpusraptor, in the guise of Dr. White pushed the two guards aside, while walking with her escort of flesh golems, given fresh facial transplants, wearing sunglasses and earwigs.

[b [#a3a3a3 "Get back to work you two. That's my 'coin you're wasting."]] Dr. White said furiously.

[b [#17a1a9 "D-Dr. White! Of course ma'am! Right away ma'am!"]] the first guard said nervously, and both ran back to their stations.


Once inside the warehouse, Corpusraptor dropped the guise of Dr. White. Skin began to melt away like hot candle wax, bubbling and boiling away. Underneath the skin, the flesh burned and sloughed off, until all that was left was a skeleton and augmented organs. The skull-face grinned, wearing a metallic smile of razor-sharp teeth. Electronic eyes stared out, obviously designed to look genuine, but the reddish edges that would normally be hidden by surrounding tissues revealed them to be false, albeit very expensive ones. In the mess of organs that sat suspended in the skeletal frame, there was an unusual plastic "organ" sitting just beneath the heart, which appeared to be some sort of sac containing some unusual fluid; a worker in the magic towers would recognize it as the same fluid produced by the towers in the process of generating power, and note its strong magical properties. The artificial organ sac began glowing blue, and the skeletal form began to stretch, before shrinking down to the size of a child. The mess of melted flesh and skin began to sear and burn with pulsating green flame, as it corroded into black smoke that swirled around Corpusraptor's skeletal frame. The smoke clung to the skeleton, and began slowly forming flesh around the bone, intricately reforming. The skin began to slowly grow over top of that, like a soupy mixture atop the rest. Before the transformation was complete, and Corpusraptor donned her black business jacket and fedora.

Arriving shortly afterwords was the mercenary on the phone. He arrived carrying a heavy rifle and six pistols strapped to his chest. Corpusraptor gave a nod at him, grinning her shark-tooth smile.

[b [#131313 "You're early. Not bad. I suppose we are ready to get down to business."]] Corpusraptor said, her voice hissing with venom. [b [#131313 "I want you to kill King Desto. Your reputation precedes you, so I expect nothing short of success from you."]]

[b [#34af92 "Wait, what?"]] the mercenary said in shock.

[b [#131313 "You will assassinate the king, disguised as a member of the Arcane Clan. I will provide what assistance I can. A getaway driver will arrive on stolen air transport, also disguised as Arc."]] Corpusraptor instructed.

[b [#34af92 "This sounds like a dangerous mission. I want eight times the usual rate."]] the mercenary protested.

[b [#131313 "And here I thought you were actually skilled. I suppose this was all a farce, then? Your reputation as a dangerous mercenary... don't tell me, the reputation was fabricated? You didn't actually kill the Hanzu Montenegra, did you? You paid someone else to kill the Arc wizard in your place, and took credit for it."]]


[b [#34af92 "I don't know what you're talking about!"]] the mercenary said defiantly.

[b [#131313 "Oh, I think you do. I have your file, and I've read every detail there. Tell me, are you afraid to kill?"]] Corpusraptor taunted.

[b [#34af92 "I've killed many people!"]] the mercenary shouted.

[b [#131313 "No, I don't believe you have. Your MO is all over the place, inconsistent. But each kill... it is consistent with other mercs and bounty hunters. You are afraid to kill. I have no use for a mercenary that cannot kill."]] Corpusraptor drew out pistol and pressed the muzzle to the mercenary's forehead. He flinched, beads of sweat rolling down. [b [#131313 "You are useless to me."]] Corpusraptor pull the trigger unflinching, unblinking, as the back of the mercenary's skull ruptured open, bits of skull and brain exiting through this hole. A large cloud of blood sprayed outward like a geyser.

[b [#131313 "I suppose I should begin looking for a real mercenary then."]] Corpusraptor frowned, and pulled out her untraceable cellphone again, and began making more calls.

_
[b Characters
[#131313 #131313] = Corpusraptor
[#bf1111 #bf1111] = Dr. Fanswick (Deceased)
[#34af92 #34af92] = Hired Mercenary
[#17a1a9 #17a1a9] = Phoenix Laboratories Security Guard 1
[#2c93af #2c93af] = Phoenix Laboratories Security Guard 2
[#a3a3a3 #a3a3a3] = Dr. Sarah White
]
  Corpusraptor / ShadowOfSkills / 2y 22d 3h 59m 23s
Finally getting her room key she looked around seeing another person come in side . not wanting to deal with the person that much she went up stairs to find her room door "where is it" she said looking for the room that had the numbers 325 on them . it wasnt long before lilly finally opened the door she smiled laying on the bed "finally" she said closing her eyes after the door was shut.
  Lilly / EternalSnow / 2y 23d 5h 34m 29s
The night felt long. A cloaked man was perched atop the clock tower in Phoenix Town as he peered down towards the entire city. The power was on but the MRC worked on the towers some more for maintenance. This man held a sniper rifle in his hands but he wasn't planning on using it right now, it was his trusted ally in case things went awry. A device in his left pocket buzzed. He answered it.

[b [+blue "I guess The Arc is back after all these damn years."]] a voice spoke

[b [+red "Yes. I know." The man said a transparent phone. "They are back. You can't smell the smoke from the towers?"]]

[b [+blue "Oh I can smell it alright, even after a week the stench of the smoke still hasn't left. I want you to head over to the quarantine of Old Gielnor to make sure the gates are still sealed."]]

[b [+red "They are. I can still see the red and green lights blinking from here. We aren't stupid, we made sure that is powered by it's own magic inside the gates. If it does ever get destroyed though this will be worse than Blackout Day."]]

[b [+blue "Just be safe. I can feel war coming."]]

The cloaked man hung up and put the phone back in his pocket. [b [+red "When did it never come?"]] He pressed a button on his sniper as it collapsed into a little green rectangle the size of a flashdrive. He clipped it to his holster and jumped down from the clock tower and landed on the ground. The cloaked man walked off into the distance towards the Phoenix Town Inn.

[+red Cloaked Man]

[+blue Voice on the phone]

[b [i [center [h3 GDVC Area]]]]

"We got a sick one over here! This isn't your normal one though!" A GDVC worker said as he rushed a pale green citizen towards the infirmary inside the mobile tent next to the quarantine.

"Get her inside quick!" Another employee said.

People were looking at them in shock as employees made a magic barrier around the area to avoid contamination.

"What the hell does she got?" their boss Mr. Yaka asked. He was from a well known doctor from Nernias but soon moved to Gielnor to help out with the sick.

"I don't know. It seems to be the same from when Old Gielnor was attacked. I don't know how she got it though...The place is on lockdown if you can notice." Another doctor said pointing to the sealed gate outside.

"This is bad. The veins are terribly exposed and are pulsating from her arms and face. Her teeth are also rotting. Did anyone let her into Old Gielnor without my permission?!" Yaka asked.

"N-no not that I know of." A GDVC worker said.

Yaka opened up a computer in the tent and looked at the logs. "Two days ago someone opened up the gate and let a Mrs. Terra in...I thought I explicitly told no one to open the fucking gate without my permission!"

The workers looked terrified. Not because of Yakas sudden anger, but the sickness that was brought back with this girl.

"There's nothing I can do. This is the only way." Yaka said pulling out a pistol.

[b "WAIT SIR! DON'T!"]

Yaka pulled the trigger and put one through the girls head. He turned to his men and sighed. "If this was two days ago then there are more out there. Right?"

"No, people said she was in her house this entire time. Never even left. We got a call when she wouldn't answer her door."

"Thank goodness...I didn't want to have drop a T-Nuke on Phoenix Town." Yaka said.

After the body was disposed of using a special type of acidic dust the area was cleaned and sprayed with a sterilization hose and the barrier was lifted. The onlookers were then told to enter the tent to be checked out for this sickness.
  Arcanus Arcanum / HEAD ES PROGRAMMER / Vossler / 2y 24d 5h 25m 54s
Nerre stared up at the ceiling, leaning all the way back in an office chair that was slightly too small for him. It gave a gentle creak as he slowly whirled around to face yet another infuriated lecturer.

"Kiwanuka!"

"You can call me Nerre."

"Kiwanuka, you need to stop doing this. It's unacceptable!"

Nerre knew what he meant, but he decided it was time to push a few buttons. Working overtime was just about his least favourite thing in the world, but something he'd signed up for when he'd accepted his tenure at Phoenix Town University. Dr. Nerre Kiwanuka. It looked good on the stainless steel nameplate attached to the office door, he couldn't resist. Besides, he got on with his colleagues. Mostly.

"I have no idea what you're talking about, Paul."

Paul stuffed his barely-contained fury behind a seemingly calm expression, but his furrowed brow and balled right fist belied the truth.

"Someone's been in my office. Charlotte on the floor beneath told me that some perverse noises were coming from my office. You're the only one on the seventh floor who stayed late last night, Kiwanuka."

Nerre shrugged, and turned back to his computer. "Wasn't me."

Naturally, it was him. He'd met a tearful postgraduate the night before in the lobby. An understudy of a notorious plastic surgeon that had been missing for a few days, worried that her mentor wasn't going to come back. Nerre tried to console her, one thing led to another, and then they were in Paul's office, undressed.

"It's not like I could have taken her here," Nerre thought to himself, "I gotta share this office with three other people. What if someone came back?"

He clicked at his screen a few times, letting the silence hang between himself and Paul.

"Will that be all, Paul? I've got a lot to do."

This wasn't a lie. Blackout day had been an absolute nightmare for Gielnor's agricultural industry, with countless automated systems brought to a dead stop. The Magic Tower Repair company were doing their best to bring the towers back online, but it'd be a few weeks, if not months before then, and some forty percent of Gielnor's food supply was at risk. He had been tasked to find a solution, and time was running out. Paul let out an exasperated sigh and made for the door, slamming it behind him. Fortunately, he'd had the tact to ambush Nerre while he was alone in the office. Explaining that to his office mate, Dr. Lindquist, would have been a layer of stress he didn't want to deal with.

He glanced down at a drawer on his desk and yanked it open. No more work was getting done tonight unless he had some Fairy Dust handy. No such luck today. Worse still, Nerre's supplier was among the thousand people killed at the festival, leaving him completely drugless. "I'm at a university," Nerre mumbled to himself. "There's gotta be somewhere I can score some F." He got to his feet and slipped into his coat. As he left the building, he shot an unpleasant glance at Charlotte, the receptionist.

Phoenix Town University's main campus had gotten oddly quiet since Blackout Day. Among the revellers killed was a number of students, including one of his own. Nerre, of course, had elected not to attend the funeral. A mournful group of students shuffled drunkenly past, heading towards the entertainment district. Nerre paused.

"Hey, kids."

The students, undergraduates, ignored him.

"Rand."

One of the group, a pale biologist with spiky blonde hair, stopped, tugging at his friend's arm.

"Dr. Kiwanuka."

"This isn't secondary school any more, you can call me Nerre."

He slid over to the group, wearing his usual blank expression and revealing nothing.

"You know, it's pretty dangerous to be wandering around drunk at the moment. The Arc could be anywhere, waiting to take advantage. You kids are the future, after all."

Nerre towered over Rand, looking down into the teen's eyes and putting a hand on his shoulder.

"Take off your shoes, kid."

Rand took a step back, surprised.

"W-why would I do that, Nerre?"

"Because drugs on campus are a serious offense, Randall Chang. And I happen to know that since the attacks, we've ramped up security at Phoenix Town University. So you can either hand them over now, to your favourite lecturer, who will pretend he didn't see you, or you can deal with the sniffer dogs waiting at every exit of this campus."

Rand shook his head vehemently, "it's not like that, sir!"

"Well, then. You shouldn't have a problem showing me the content of your left sock, hmm? I'd hate to hear you got your foot chewed off by a dog."

"I don't have anything!"

Nerre quickly scanned the eyes of the other students, reading their expressions in order. Irate, drunk, bemused, amused, scared, Rand, and - aha!

"You!" he exclaimed at a young girl staring guiltily at her loose-fitting white socks. She squealed, jumping back.

"Young lady, I sure hope that your friends haven't put you up to carrying their drugs for you. That'd be a real shame. I know Randall here has the biggest crush, it'd be heartbreaking if you took the fall for him."

"Sir!"

Nerre ignored Randall's pleas of protest as the girl begun to cry.

"I bet you get the best grades too. Hand them over."

The girl let out a slight sob. "Sorry guys."

She knelt over and pulled a small clear bag of green powder from her sock.

"Don't hide drugs in your socks, kids. It isn't as clever as you think." Nerre jeered victoriously, snatching the bag from the girl.

"I didn't see any of you," he laughed, putting the drugs into his pocket and walking away, "have a good evening, all!" he called back to the kids.

Of course, the sniffer dogs weren't looking for the cheap Green Lightning that had been circulating around the University for years. They were looking for bombs.
  nerre. / redeemer / 2y 24d 22h 20m 49s
She sat there in her dimly lit penthouse in downtown Phoenix Town, hands clasped. Her money and power had brought her to this point, it was not free, but through hard work and careful manipulation of the right people. Though wealthy, money was not her greatest weapon, but rather deception was.

In the dim light, she grinned. She had already heard the news of the Arcane Clan's attack. With Gielnor authorities worried about these terrorists, their attention would be away from her criminal activities. She saw an opportunity to spread and sew further corruption, to seize more power, to ensure her reign over Gielnor crime would not end.

Standing on either side of her were two large men, if they could be called that, wearing black business suits. Their pale gray-white faces and milky eyes denoted their true nature; these bodyguards were flesh golems, created for immense strength and unquestioning loyalty. Each one carried a military grade heavy rifle. She favored having dumb muscle like flesh golems around; they could be trusted to never turn on their creator, and were easier to control than fanatics. They could be created en masse, and were useful tools for enforcing her rule. She traveled nowhere without specially augmented flesh golems, such as these, occasionally using ones with face transplants and sunglasses, to give them a more lifelike appearance, so as to not attract unwanted attention.

She was expecting a visitor. He was an hour late. A scowl of impatience spread across her face as she tapped her foot. Just as she tiring of the wait, the doors to her penthouse opened, and in he was thrusted.

He was Dr. Fanswick, a famous plastic surgeon in Phoenix Town, known by many. He was on several magazines, and had his own television program. He had also taken out a loan from one of her associates, and failed to repay. He entered the penthouse escorted by one of her enforcers, blindfolded. When he was thrust into the penthouse, the blindfold was removed.

It was a fairly large room, lit only by candles and sconces. Several large banners and tapestries decorated the walls. In the middle of the room she sat upon an expensive armchair.

She was not very large, but held herself with a large demeanor. She wore a black business jacket and matching fedora. She grinned, revealing sharp teeth. Her yellow eyes gleamed menacingly in the low light.

[b [#131313 "I've been waiting for you doctor."]] she said, her voice giving off both an air of elegance and immense cruelty. [b [#131313 "It's been too long."]]

[b [#bf1111 "What's going on here?! Whoever you are, you'll be hearing from my lawyer!"]] the doctor said, irate.

[b [#131313 "Oh, you don't remember me? Well that's too bad, because I remember you all too well. A young medical grad student with a dream of being famous... Did you think that I would forget?"]] she said, eyeing the doctor carefully, watching his movements, scrutinizing each motion that he made.

[b [#bf1111 "Who are you?"]] the doctor said, now more afraid.

[b [#131313 "You owe me money, Fanswick. A lot of money. And you haven't payed up."]] she said, her smile turning to a frown. [b [#131313 "Did you think you could screw me, doctor? I'm afraid you're dreadfully mistaken."]]

[b [#bf1111 "I'm not talking until my lawyer is here!"]] the doctor shouted in fear.

[b [#131313 "That's fine. I didn't bring you here to make you talk."]] she spoke coldly, her smile returned. [b [#131313 "Guards. Kill him."]]

[b [#bf1111 "No! Don't shoot! I'll pay..."]] the doctor protested.

The flesh golems raised their rifles up and fired, without saying a word. The doctor's pleas of mercy were cut short as he was riddled with dozens of bullets. His body was torn into three different pieces, and bits of flesh and organs were plastered against the floor.

[b [#131313 "Oh, that's too bad. I don't know if there'll be enough of him left to make a golem from."]] she said cooly. [b [#131313 "His life insurance should make up for that."]]

Later that night, she drew out one of her untraceable cellphones, and made a call.

[b [#131313 "I have a job for you to do..."]] she said coldly.

[b [#34af92 "What, Corpusraptor? I'm busy."]]

[b [#131313 "I'll meet with you at the warehouse later. It's a big one. I promise five times your usual rate."]]

[b [#34af92 "I like the sound of that."]]

_
[b Characters
[#131313 #131313] = Corpusraptor
[#bf1111 #bf1111] = Dr. Fanswick
[#34af92 #34af92] = Hired Mercenary
]
  Corpusraptor / ShadowOfSkills / 2y 25d 14m 20s
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