“What’s the difference between good and evil? Who decides what is just? We all have our own ways of saying it and our own ways of going about it, but in the end it all boils down to one thing. There is only right and wrong. There may be multiple rights and multiple wrongs, but that doesn’t mean there is a mixing of the two. It’s either one or the other.
When someone who is evil does wrong they believe it to be just in their own minds. Some of the greatest tragedies in the world come to pass because of an evil man’s justice... yet does that make it right? If they see justice in it does it make it right to simply do as they please? Could someone take everything you hold dear away from you but be justified in it because they believe themself to be right? Of course not. If a man gives you a gun and say that you must shoot one of two people placed before you are you justified to take a life then? Or are you simply in the wrong for killing someone? There is no median when it comes to action.
So I say this. To do wrong is an injustice against all those who love you, who hold you dear, and who care for you. To lie, to cheat, to steal, to take what isn’t yours, to manipulate, to craft excuses for your wrongdoings and to take others for granted. Those are the very sources of injustice. They tear apart the hearts of others and leave them empty and wanting. An excuse crafted from a lie is nothing more than garbage and it’s an injustice to form them into words.
There is always a right or wrong, although it may not always be obvious and there may be more than one right or wrong it is always present to those who are willing to see it. It may be based on character, but that character is solely based on justice. Whether you are a just person or plagued with injustice, that will craft your rights and wrongs.”
[i I will start by saying this. I’ve been rather tired lately. Things haven’t been going well for me and my mind and body are taking quite the toll for it. I’ve just been distant, but I need something to keep my mind running so I came up with this. If you’re interested then please continue on. If not that’s completely understandable.]
Power is drawn from within us, of course. Our experiences, our pain, our suffering, our love, our hope, it tempers us and refines us. In this world we unlock our potential through our experience. In that sense our power will be unlocked the moment we decide whether we will be good or evil. For instance a man who lost his family to a murderer might unlock their potential through that pain and suffering, becoming an officer the the legion to fight for peace and justice. Or a man who was raised by an abisive parent and treated like dirt their entire life might become a recluse monster hungry for blood and filled with anger, their potential driving them to destroy all those who never helped them escape their trauma. In that sense there is really no way to temper or prepare someone before their potential is unlocked to decide their path afterwards. They must come to it on their own.
In this world potential can manifest in many ways. One person’s potential might cause them to gain the ability to float or heal or simply gain more physical power, while others might breath and control elements or call upon monsters or sprout wings and fly. It is not uncommon to have the same potential as another, although it is very rare for specific things. It also Varys depending on the experience. A man who almost tripped and was hit by a car might gain the potential to lift said car a person who fell and was hit by a car might gain the same ability but be able to lift an entire building. The level of stimuli can greatly effect the potential which is why it always varies between the type of person.
In this world you will all be taking the roles of students who are preparing for graduation. Some of you may have already unlocked your potential and others may not have. Either way you’ve been working hard all year and it’s paying off. While some will proceed to look for normal careers others may seek to join the Legion and fight to assure that others don’t use their potential to do wrong. Your lives are just truly beginning and now is the time to celebrate.
You’ve worked hard to get where you are now so remember it and mold it into your hearts. All experiences are a catalyst to unlock your true potential. In only a few days you’ll all be attending your graduation so classes will be rather relaxed with no real work to be done other than preparations. Take your time and talk with your friends and classmates, share memories and talk about your futures. This is a time to be happy.
When making a character pm me just a few simple details, I won’t be asking for much because I’d rather we learn about you in the actual story itself. Just stuck to the guidelines and let’s have some fun.
Age: 17-20, this is technically high school. But I’ll stop at 20 for any repeat students.
Potential: If you don’t want one yet then just put LOCKED. If you do have one then give an explaination of how it works and try not to be too overpowered.
Short Description: Let us know a small bit about your character so we know the basics. Nothing too deep is needed here.
I won’t have many rules, but we will have an easy 350 characters minimum. Don’t try to kill off any other people unless I give permission. Romance is allowed, it’s no big deal to me but try to keep things somewhat relaxed here or go offsite to settles things. Fights are expected, but don’t expect them to end in single turns. This is life and death afterall. Cursing and stuff like that are fine, I’m well aware that some character personalities are heavily dependent on that so I won’t be very strict. That being said I will intervene if anytime gets out of hand. If you have any questions feel free to ask. Pictures aren’t needed for characters, but if you don’t use one your first post MUST be descriptive of them so others can identify your character.
That’s it. I’ll place character info below. Aside from that have fun and I’ll probably make another thread for group chat later on.
Potential: Jherrichho’s emotions and feelings form entirely different personas that if too strong can take control or manifest outside of him in the form of himself but with heads replaced by shadows. These are Pain, Hate, Love, Sadness, and Fear. Although he is completely capable of feeling these things it is always possible to be overwhelmed by his feelings and potentially become one of these personas or lose control of it. They can’t move too far away from him and if it ejects from him he can no longer feel it and loses a fifth of his strength. All of these personas have their own effects when in control and as such will put a strain on his body.
Pain-Completely ignore pain threshold to power through hardships but doesn’t negate the damage.
Hate-Breaks the strength barrier that keeps the average human from exerting too much power to protect your own body.
Love-Causes injuries to heal at an increased rate. Impact will improve healing rate substantially.
Fear-Wildcard, effect varies based on level of fearfulness and the fear itself.
Short Description: Jherrichho, a distant yet caring person. He’s taller than average but not too tall, always wearing a hat over his short hair and has almost black brown eyes that contrast with his caramel skin. He tends to keep his distance and prefers to not get attached yet can’t seem to ever turn away new faces. His heart is always in the right place, but that trust in others tends to get him hurt. Not everyone is kind after all. He’ll always smile when talking with others but frowns when left alone or deep in thought. It’s never a good idea to upset him though, he really dislikes his potential.
Potential: name: Tea House. Chrys can produce teas from her skin, but these teas each have special properties derived from her first experiences tasting a normal version of that tea. She can only produce teas that she has ingested before, so nothing poisonous. Teas that produce an enhancing or weakening effects for physical attributes only last five minutes, teas that produce plain negative or positive effects last ten minutes . No individual can be affected by more than three of her teas every six hours, additional teas will have no effect. Each individual tea can only produce one effect. Chrys can be effected by her own teas. She can manipulate the tea itself like water manipulation, using it as a weapon in and of itself— but this only applies to the tea she creates with her Potential, not any other liquid. Creating too much can severely dehydrate her.
Short Description: Intellectual and a bit standoffish at first, but her Potential indicates that she is probably more complex than she seems. She doesn’t use her ability in public very often, and despite the fact that her ability is almost an ultimate Support-type ability, she prefers to work alone and has trust issues. Likes to read a lot, and is always seen carrying a large thermos of hot water and a big bag of various types of teas.
Potential: Maurica can share her mind with small animals. When she is doing this she can "speak" with them in simple images/memories. If the animal is willing, Maurica can take full control over the animal. The longer she stays in control of an animal, the more she starts to think like one. While sharing minds with an animal, Maurica loses all control of her human body and it goes limp if she starts to control the animal.
Short Description: Maurica is a blunt girl who doesn't scare easily and is a fierce advocate of animal rights. She has a pet rat which she saved from being run over by a car shortly after her own father was killed in a car crash. The rat is called Jason and goes everywhere Maurica does.
Maurica is a stout, fair skinned brunette with curly hair and deep brown eyes.
Short Description: Captain of the basketball team, cross-country team, tennis club, class president, newspaper editor, and valedictorian. A diligent student who has done the most that she can with the time she has available to her, and who still tries to make time for others. Known to do volunteer work over summer.
Short Description: A quiet individual who looks to investigate and research potential. He has done work with the school newspaper investigating incidents involving potential and also works with various clubs to do the same. The motivation behind his thirst for knowledge is unknown, but none of his teachers complain.
You don't have permission to post in this thread.
Chrys got used to Jherrichho’s weight on her rather easily, shouldering it as they walked down the mostly empty streets. When he spoke up, she looked over and gave him her attention even as she kept her ears trained on their surroundings. She hummed in thought at his musings about his arm, but his last few sentences had her lips twitching into a smirk. Finally, she snorted.
[+teal “I think there’s something you don’t know about me yet. Not surprising, considering we just met this morning... even if it feels like longer than that somehow,”] she started, her voice much more relaxed than it had been around the others. [+teal “I crave adventure. Mystery. This little city is a bit boring for me,”] she turned to face him fully while still shouldering his weight. Her vibrant blue eyes shone with barely suppressed excitement. [+teal “I might not like that you’re hurt, or that I feel like all of this is going to be one dangerous thing after another, but I’m loving every minute of this adventure. I’m extremely excited to serve what this whole thing means, what the future holds. And if it’s something bad enough to put us into serious danger, I’ll be there so you and I can dig ourselves out of it. I should probably be a litte more open as well,”] her smile slipped off her face as she remembered her many secrets. Her eyes grew dark for a long moment.
She stayed silent in thought as they passed a few stores, and only opened her mouth to speak again when she led him down a turn. Her voice was a soft, serious whisper. [+teal “I have not been very open with you. I have never lied, but I’m a secretive person, Jherrichho. I don’t typically tell anyone anything about me even if I’ve known them for years. That’s why the school still thinks I haven’t unlocked my Potential,”] she purses her lips as the Apothecary came into view at the end of the road.
It was a large building, the size of two normal stores on that street. The plaque bearing it’s name was a proud purple, the words bright teal against that background. Chrysanth took a breath, straightening her back and an invisible mask pulling over her face once more. She went from Jherrichho’s friend Chrys to the cold and impersonal Chrysanth again.
[+teal “When we get in, I’m going to tell my mothers that you got sick and I wanted to see if I could help,”] she whispered, keeping her eyes fixed on the building. [+teal “Mother is okay, you can trust her. Don’t let her see anything you want to keep secret though, just in case. And when it comes to Mom...”] Chrysanh’s jaw clenched, her eyes darkening even further. [+teal “Mom is the one that looks like me, has my hair and eyes. Mother is the one with brown eyes and dyed pink hair. Don’t talk to Mom unless she speaks to you first, I’m going to take you to my room as soon as possible so she should leave us alone but you need to know that you cannot trust her,”] Chrysanth stopped walking so she could look at Jherrichho, her face serious. [+teal “I mean it. Do not even [i mention] you have a Potential, her’s is with emotion. Like I said, I will keep her away as best as I can, and everything should go without a problem. Still. Please.”]
Chrysanth allowed a moment for Jherrichho to absorb her words, and then she gave him a small smile. [+teal “But relax. You shouldn’t need to worry about that, because I’ll be there and the whole point of this trip is to help heal you. So take a deep breath and act normal, okay? You’re my sick classmate that I’m helping out, nothing weird about you or the school or today. Now let’s go.”]
She led him the rest of the way up, and gently pushed the door open.
The shop was huge. The right half was set up like a café, with a bar where tons of boxes and jars of loose leaf tea where stacked up on a shelf and ready to be made fresh for customers. Heavy chalkboard signs carrying the food and tea menu hung over the bar from the high ceiling, and kettles gently heated for gas burners. The left half of the shop was obviously the store side, with racks of dried herbs near the front windows followed by shelves and cases of salves, lotions, soaps, candles with herbs in them, and almost any other handmade aromatherapy or bath item imaginable. Even tea flavored caramels lined a smaller shelf in the center of the store, facing the entrance where the two teens were. The only woman inside was at the bar, her pink hair pulled up into a ponytail behind a colorful purple and green bandana. She smiled warmly when she saw the newcomers, putting the scoop she had been holding down and dusting her hands of the herbs she had been sorting.
[+hotpink “Hello! Chrys, you’re home early. Your mom’s out at the jewler’s, she wants to see about buying some tumbled stones so we can start a small line of handmade earrings. She wants to put joy and love into rose quartz earrings to see if they’ll sell,”] the woman informed her adoptive daughter, so relaxed slightly under Jherrichho. Chrys smiled, just as relaxed around this woman as she was around Jherrichho.
[+teal “Hi Mother. My friend got sick, so I came to see if I could test out some new teas on him to see if they help. Do you have anything for stomach ache?”] she asked, leading Jherrichho over to the bar. The woman hummed happily, smiling at the boy.
[+hotpink “Well hello there!”] she greeted cheerily. [+hotpink “Sorry that you aren’t feeling great. Lemme see if I have any special herbs available...”] she turned and started rummaging through the containers of teas and herbs on the shelves behind her. She came back with two jars. [+hotpink “Chamomile for stomach ache, and Chrysanthemum for fevers, colds, headaches, and dizziness,”] she winked. [+hotpink “Chrysanth brews Chrysanthemum tea, funny huh? I picked out her name because Chrysanthemum is such a good natural remedy. Wanted her to be just as helpful, you know?”]
Chrys was blushing. She coughed into one fist, grabbing the two jars and holding them in one arm. [+teal “Thanks Mother. We’ll, uh, go to my room now so that I can brew the tea. He wants privacy, you understand right?”] only after her mother nodded with a sympathetic smile to Jherrichho did Chrysanth sling her free arm over his shoulder again and lead him down a back hallway to her bedroom.
It was clean, orderly. A plain teal bed, a bookcase stuffed with books and another bookcase overflowing with herbs and jars of tea like the ones up front. There was a desk, with papers scattered on top of it and a few electric hot plates on the ground on top of a bamboo mat, with empty kettles nearby. There were also floor pillows on the ground, a book laid down next to one to show that that was where she had been sitting and reading the day before—the book was an encyclopedia of herbs and their uses. There was a blue bookmark halfway through it. Perhaps the oddest thing about her room was the rather out of place sink installed in the wall next to her desk.
[+teal “So, uh, just sit down wherever. I’ll heat up some water,”] she told her friend, picking up a kettle and taking it to the sink. Once filled, she sat it down on one of the electric hot plates and turned it on. [+teal “it’s easier on my body this way. Making tea from my body is faster, but it dehydrates me. This way, I can make stronger teas.”] she explained, taking a seat on a floor pillow.
Nathan took the number with a nod of appreciation. He made sure to keep his eyes on them though which gave him the sight of Chrysanth being visibly overcome by emotion. The warmest one he had seen from her all day, but a welcome change. It was enough to get his shoulders to loosen up some as his stance softened from the attention he had been at.
That relaxation broke though as both he and Molly moved to offer Jherrichho a hand only to have him wave it off. The wince reminded them of the shape he had been in when Nathan gathered everyone. He toughed it out long enough to approve the meeting place though and to wish them well until their agreed upon meeting. Even Chrysanth gave them her thanks before she helped him to leave the alleyway.
Molly was quick to speak before they made their escape. [b “You can always be comfortable coming to me for help. It's what I'm here for.”]
Nathan let out a sigh of relief that was interrupted by Maurica's tense question. A glance at her was enough for him to realize how this situation must have seemed from an outside perspective. So he made sure to pull his scarf down enough to reveal his confident smile before he answered her. It might not do anything to help assuage her concerns, but it couldn't hurt either.
[b “You're not the only one Maurica. There is a whole hell of a lot that feels off about this, but a promise is a promise, and to be fair they went along with my terms easily enough. The fact they didn't press to be involved makes me more comfortable about it all. If they have malevolent intentions they are not smart enough about following through to do anything about them to us. Since we could easily just walk away now without any issue.”]
Molly glared at him at the suggestion of them just walking away. [b “Relax. I'm going through with this, but the less anybody else knows about my plans the better. They can't lay a trap for me if they don't how I'm going in and especially if they can't guarantee when either. All I need from you is to do what you do anyway Molly; just go back in and help the student council out with the plans for graduation. I'll text you more later.”]
The tall woman hesitated only long enough to confirm that Nathan could contact her before she made her way to put her bicycle back. She was not going to hesitate to go back to her routine if it could help out. That and she was happy to leave the illegal matters in Nathan's hands anyway as she knew he had more experience in that regard.
Nathan kept his eyes on Molly until she turned the corner and was out of sight before he focused all of his attention back on Maurica. He made sure to open with as friendly a smile as he could muster. This was not exactly the best day to meet him after all, although he hoped he had made a decent enough impression on her. Finding out the guy who gave you a coin this morning is willing to commit felonies probably not the best. Still he kept his fingers crossed that it was at least not as off putting to her as it sounded to him in his head.
[b “So I don't know how much of that you were there for, or how much of it you were able to follow, but I'll be glad to explain on the way. I think a trip for some ice cream sounds good right about now and I'm going to need the energy. How about I answer any questions you have on the way, sound good?”]
The benefit for her was an obvious one as what little of that meeting he was sure she saw was sure to have piqued her curiosity. If she was anything like him getting that sated would be more than enough to go along with him. Failing that she would at least get some free ice cream out of the deal, and honestly who would turn down free ice cream? Especially when it comes with some hot gossip.
It was admittedly for his own ends that he made the offer though as the opportunity to run this whole scenario by someone less wild would be good. Sure Molly was going along with it, but she might rob a bank if Chrysanth asked her with puppy dog eyes. Maurica had no such ties to either of them as far as he was aware, and so her fresh perspective would be of far more value. Especially as she already picked up on an off feeling from it.
[b “I'd love to know what you think about this whole mess.”]
Jherrichho couldn’t help but chuckle at her words, smiling slightly. Here she was, faced with the unknown yet always keeping that same strength about her. It was inspiring, or rather comforting in his eyes. He let out a sigh of relief as she helped him press forward and closed his eyes for a moment as they moved.
[i [+purple I’ll be resting, next time you’ll speak your own mind and not rely on me. The nerve, after... all these... years...] ] The voice faded away before his eyes opened. They were back to normal, yet his face was unwilling to change. His thoughts stuck on what had just occurred and the stipulations places upon them by his other self. [+maroon “What a bother”], he said before turning to Chrys. [+maroon “I have no idea what he was planning with that deal. Whenever we get a moment on our own when we reach our destination I’m going to have to look at my arm.”]
He lifted up the bandage covered arm so they could see it better in the light. It didn’t hurt at all like it did before, yet there was still stiffness and small spikes of pain every once in a while. He couldn’t see any reason as to why it would be important as a bargaining chip or deal breaker, but that smoke... that was completely new. He had never seen it before today and he didn’t know what to think or expect. It would all just have to wait.
He made a mental note of how empty the streets were at this hour. As they passed by store after store you could see people inside working as well as a few customers, but most people worked at this hour so not much would be happening until the evening. He remembered going with his mother to the hospitals when he was younger and couldn’t stay at home by himself. Barely anyone would ever show up, but once the evening hit and working hours faded commotion was always close behind. He had taken this path home multiple times before at the end of school days and yet it was never so obvious as to how empty it was when they were in classes. At least this was a very convenient time to leave, no one should stop them or anything like that.
He had never been to the apothecary himself, heard about it on multiple accounts from his father yet never visited personally. Would her parents be there? How would they react to them showing up at this time? Would he have to fight? Escape? [i Of course not, what am I thinking? This will be no problem at all. We’ve gotten past the hard part and now it’s just up to time and preparation.] [i [+maroon But don’t drop your guard.] ]
[+maroon “Hey, when we get there”], he started with a pause before continuing. [+maroon “I’ll show you my arm. It’s not fair of me to show others so freely but act as if it’s some huge secret with you.”] He tucked his mouth into his scarf as he blushed, his eyes darting away from her in slight embarrassment. [+maroon “And you’ve done so much for me it’s only fair that I, um... be a bit more... open”], he admitted. This was only right and as so he would do so openheartedly. Besides, he felt no doubts with trusting her. Whether that was a good thing or a bad thing though wasn’t really as clear as day. As always he wouldn’t worry about it until it was too late.
[+maroon “So, um, everything is a bit of a blur. It’s been a long time since I gave into my feelings like that, but are you okay with all of this?”] His eyes shot back to her with a serious look embedded deep within them. He hasn’t asked her yet but there wasn’t a better time than this. [+maroon “I know this all happened rather suddenly so I wouldn’t be upset or anything if you wanted to turn away. You’ve done more than enough for me as it is, I wouldn’t want to drag you into something you can avoid if it comes to something serious.”]
Chrys perked up when someone stepped into the alleyway, straightening to her full six feet, three inches. She was about an inch taller than normal because of her sneakers, but she also hardly ever wore anything to give her even [i more] height. It just wasn’t necessary, Molly being one of the very few girls taller than her in the school.
When straightened all the way in the alley, Chrysanth’s neutral-toned wardrobe, stark black hair, and almost shimmery blue eyes combined to make... quite the intimidating appearance. Her sharp gaze didn’t help that at all, immediately honing in on the small figure that had joined them. Chrys blinked, her sharp gaze almost immediately softening into mild confusion rather than cold suspicion. She examined the new arrival as everyone else spoke.
Chrysanth had seen this girl around school now and then, but that didn’t seem to be where she recognized her from the most. The girl’s name didn’t come to mind though, but Chrys didn’t mind her. She seemed like a quiet, jumpy girl and Chrys wasn’t somebody to try and scare someone on purpose unless there was a very good reason. Figuring that the newcomer was most likely safe, Chrys let her gaze switch over to her friend.
Just in time for him to hand her his phone number.
As Chrys slowly reached out to grab it, everyone in the alleyway could witness something that she hardly ever showed in public—surprise smoothed over Chrys’s face. She looked down at the number with soft surprise in her eyes, not expecting anyone—even the kind and too-trusting Jherrichho— to actually willingly give her their contact information. She gently folded the paper, sliding it into her pocket. As soon as it was put away, her face smoothed back out into her cold mask. She nodded when Jherrichho said they would meet the others in the newspaper room.
And then her eyes trailed to Jherrichho’s stomach, and ruined Chrys’s usually-perfect mask again as concern etched itself onto her face. She tried to hide it, not wanting to show her emotions to anyone she didn’t trust , but she couldn’t keep it from shining in her eyes as she walked up to Jherrichho’s side and wrapped an arm around his shoulders carefully.
[+teal “You’re an idiot if you think I’m letting you go home alone in this condition,”] she scolded him gently, frowning. She turned her head back to the others, nodding to them. She shifted slightly, not used to being genuine with people she barely knew and feeling awkward about it. [+teal “Thank you,”] she said softly. [+teal “Really. If everything goes smoothly, none of you will have to help us out again. We know this is our problem, we wouldn’t ask for help if we didn’t need it,”] she assured them before looking away. She didn’t like the vulnerability that came with being genuine.
[+teal “As for you,”] she said to Jherrichho, her tone going back to leaving no room for argument. [+teal “Come on, I’m taking you to the Apothecary so we can try to sort out your injuries as much as possible. Honestly, acting all tough—“] her words turned into a fondly annoyed grumble as she helped him leave the alleyway.
Maurica peered around the corner of the alleyway, hoping she had found the right one. Yup, there was Raven and Molly. There was also another girl that looked really familiar, but she couldn't place why. Perhaps she had her in a class, bu that didn't seem quite right.
The fourth person, however, stumped her entirely. He looked strange and terrifying, like he wasn't quite right. This was the kid she had seen in Jason's thoughts, the one who Molly had to go out to help because he was dying or something. He didn't look like he was dying though. He reminded her of those other people Jason had been terrified of, in a odd sort of way. Something about his eyes. The creature that instantly came to mind was a lamprey, a small parasitic eel that lived in Alaska and whose mouth was the stuff of nightmares.
Maurica thought she was being extremely stupid and childish, being so terrified of a kid she'd never met, but there was something to be said for instincts. No, that wasn't quite true. She had had a couple classes with him in the past, but none this year that she was aware of. She often sat in the front of classrooms, so she rarely saw, or paid attention to, the other kids in her class.
Raven looked at over at her and she smiled apologetically and slid further into the alleyway, where it would seem like she was more involved in--whatever was going on. The lamprey looked at her strangely, like...well, she wasn't quite sure, but she knew she didn't like it. Maurica did realize that she was probably freaking out over nothing, but she figured she would be better safe then sorry.
She was suddenly struck by how much shorter she was than everyone else there. She would be looking up at everyone, and they down at her. It bothered her, somewhat.
Raven was talking about security footage, more precisely, acquiring it for Lamprey. For what purpose, she had no idea, as she hadn't been listening. Then again, as she hadn't been listening, it was possible that no one had given a reason after Maurica had shown up and she wouldn't have known even if she was listening. Either way, as the footage was for Lamprey, she didn't feel comfortable asking. It couldn't be anything too bad though, as it seemed Molly was going along with it, and Maurica doubted Molly would do anything that was even slightly illegal without a good reason for doing so. And this, it seemed, was slightly illegal.
Maurica noticed Jason was pressed up against her neck and she wondered if that was part of the reason she had found Lamprey so unnerving. She placed her hand up to her shoulder, and surprised Maurica by actually climbing on. She cupped her hands around him and held him at her chest.
Lamprey handed out his phone number to the others and she felt an instant twinge of guilt mixed with fear. Everything they were doing just felt so wrong and she wasn't sure why. She wasn't even sure why they were doing the things they were doing, and it still felt wrong.
He reached down to touch his stomach and Maurica realized that this must have been what Raven had meant when he said the guy was hurt. Or, maybe not, and the whole thing was a ruse so that they could plan their weird shenanigans in peace. Maybe even Molly's chipper exterior was a ruse!
Lamprey said something to the pretty black-haired girl, for whom a animal refused to readily come. Perhaps an alley cat? But that didn't seem quite right. Maurica would have to hang around her longer to be sure.
She turned and saw Raven, and smiled. She trusted that boy, though she wasn't sure why. Maybe...Maurica sidled up beside him so she could speak to him without anyone else--especially Lamprey--hearing.
[+olive "Do you know what's going on? Well, I mean, obviously you do, but, uh...[i sigh]--does something feel really off about all this or is it just me?"]
Jherrichho was relieved yet concerned with what Chrys had said. On one hand he wasn’t very subtle and could tell that the others acted as if something was wrong, so when she spoke it really managed to help. [i [+purple I can see why you’ve gotten along well with her] ], he thought to himself. And yet what she said didn’t make sense. He didn’t remember any man and woman and he certainly didn’t remember any tremor. [i [+purple So that must be what happened while we were incapacitated. I see.] ]
He was more focused on what he’d say before, but now he scanned the area with his eyes carefully. He had mainly been expecting two people and yet three showed up. Aside from that it wasn’t a person that he’d come to know. A threat? A life that needs to be extinguished? The deal being put in jeopardy? Someone who wasn’t in his memories wasn’t welcomed to me here. [i [+maroon Quiet. Keeps to herself... doesn’t cause much trouble and therefore stays out of the immediate spotlight... a loner from my perspective... Maurica... she’s no threat...] ] He frowned and cast the thought aside, upset at how the boy had come to know so many people indirectly. If he had to act it would be natural to dispose of them all, but difficult with this body. Although that never kept him from pushing the limits before.
He waited impatiently for their answer, but did well to hide it. When they agreed to help he felt relief although it wasn’t his own. Jherrichho knew deep down that with pain at the forefront of himself the lack of feeling this other side of him would have could potentially be devastating. That coupled with the realization that the pain he had caused himself would be subsiding soon meant he would be going to rest again soon. It was tiring to be active like this so things hurrying along would very well be good. [+purple “Thank you, with your help I may be able to find out what happened. Too much has been happening behind my back and I’m tired of doing nothing about it. I know this all seems strange, but I’ve been relying on researchers for my answers for too long. Now I need to discover things on my own terms”], he said with an internal chuckle. There were many things that Jherrichho would hope to keep hidden, but this outpouring of information from this side of him would come to ruin him. He would have so much more to explain to Chrys now like his arm, but this too? He trusted her of course yet that didn’t mean he wanted to reveal so much information. What would she think?
He pulled two pieces of paper and a pen out of his pocket and wrote on them for a moment before handing one to them. [+purple “This is my number, if things start to go south don’t hesitate to call. I’ll see what I can do.”] He turned to Chrys and smiled as he gave her his number as well before whispering, [+purple “I know he’s too shy of a person sometimes, but you at least deserve this. He sees you as something special I can tell. I don’t know why? But I know he does.”] He turned back to the others before wincing and reaching for the bruise on his stomach. [i [+purple I can’t keep him from coming back, this conversation needs to end now before the pain decreases enough for him to return to normal.] ]
He crossed his arms and smiled as sincerely as he could. [+purple “If everything goes okay we’ll meet you in the newspaper room tomorrow. Until then stay safe and be careful. If it comes down to me having to help I don’t know how subtle I can be”], he said before turning around and looking at the other end of the alley that led out to the street. No one was there or had passed by excluding a few cars on their way. It was an overall quiet day and that was good for now... hopefully it can stay that way.
He turned to Chrys with a panicked look on his face before saying, [+purple “If you have any warnings or information to give them now is the time to do so. I don’t have much time left.”] He began to make his way to the end of the alley, keeping his ears open just in case he’d have to act or respond. [i [+purple the pain is coming back, standing is getting more difficult. What damage did we sustain? The pain is wearing off enough for you to resume your normal control but it hasn’t subsided yet. Was something broken? No, it couldn’t be. Still, who could do something like this?] ] The look on his face turned from panic to pained as he stopped and waited for Chrys at the end of the alley, the purple now flickering out of his eyes. [i [+purple This isn’t just you anymore, you have that girl involved too. You must protect her and do what you can. I don’t know why, but something makes me care for her well-being... don’t get her hurt with all of this.] ]
[i [+maroon I... I will do all I can... to keep her safe... she’s done so much for me and I will... return the favor.] ]
Nathan raised a brow as soon as Jherrichho spoke, but did his best to listen to the presented offer nonetheless. There was something off about the way he spoke compared to usual. Did Nathan get the wrong idea about him before, or was there something off about this person he had thought to be so simple? The lack of warmth from him this time around was also noteworthy, or was the kind face just a facade? He had too many questions and not nearly enough answers.
The offer if it was valid was a decent one. Though it could easily be something simple that would provide no real value to him. Especially with how Jherrichho's behavior had changed. Still, Nathan could possibly press if necessary to glean the information that he actually sought from the offer that was on the table. It might not work out well with how the other man was acting though. Everything would depend on what it was that he was being requested to do, but Nathan would at least agree to hear him out for now.
It did not take long after that for Molly to make her appearance with a quiet announcement of her intention to help. Nathan gave her a nod in greeting that was reciprocated as she made her way to his side. That was the easiest position for them to have their meeting as it allowed the two groups to face each other. Which was an important fact in Nathan's eyes as he was still hesitant to trust this Jherrichho. Not to mention his distaste towards working with Chrysanth after that cold look she had given him just a short while ago.
Molly noticed the difference in tone as soon as Jherrichho spoke as it lacked the simple kindness that she was used to from the young man. She had interacted with him often enough when they were helping out with things. He was usually volunteered for them given his physical attributes, and unlike some of the other gifted members of the school he rarely deserted them. Despite the difference she kept her mouth shut. This may not be the kind young man that she was used to, but the man that stood before her requested her help and that was enough for her.
Eyes widened and a gasp escaped from one of them as Jherrichho explained why he had asked them for help. One could do a tremendous amount of damage with that material and both of them were well aware of it. Nathan especially knew that there were some potentials out there that could do some terrifying things with that kind of information. Just the idea of conspiring like this would provide more than enough rope for them all to hang. Molly's record was good enough that she could probably get herself pardoned for it, but Nathan's rapport with authority was not so good. If they got caught he would certainly suffer for it.
That thought made him hesitate as he looked at Maurica since it was not just his own position he had to be concerned with after having invited her. He would normally jump at the opportunity if only to find out what motivated it. This time was different though as not only did he have Maurica to worry about, but there was also something off about the person requesting his help. If it were the usual Jherrichho that would be one thing as his motives should be pure. The Jherrichho standing before him though was not such a simple man, and that was before taking into account the fact that he was with Chrysanth.
His hesitation was shared by Molly despite her being in a better position to help them. She could just as easily go back inside and alert one of the security personnel to what they were planning out here. If they needed it that badly the security guard should help them out, right? And if they were just trying to do something bad he would be able to figure it out. If not for Nathan having demonstrated a lack of trust in authority she probably would not hesitate to do that, but she knew her trust in the Legion was not shared by everyone.
Her hesitance was wiped away though as Chrysanth made a passionate plea for help. Even after spending over a year in class together; this was the first time that Chrysanth spoke up to ask her for help. The woman that warned of the world being a carnivorous plant was going out on a limb to trust her. That tugged at Molly's heartstrings enough to make her eyes misty as she nodded along to her explanation.
While Molly's hesitation was being blasted away by Chrysanth's request it only served to make Nathan more hesitant as he remembered the troubling look that she had given him. If not for her mention of the two strange individuals and the tremor he would have walked away. Those events were enough to get the gears grinding though as he looked at the ground in contemplation and absentmindedly adjusted his scarf. Perhaps his skill as a witness would come in handy after all. Although it meant that he would need to be one of the ones to see the security footage to confirm his suspicions. That should be easy enough to arrange given his talents though.
[b “I'll help. I can only get us into the faculty area, but it's a start.”]
Jherrichho made a good choice in requesting Molly as she had more than enough connections to make getting into the faculty area easy. Even her connections would not get them right into the security room though. That would be the hard part, or it would be if not for the fact that they lucked into a particularly good candidate for a break in. Nathan had contemplated breaking into the security room in the past as part of his job. Although he never did as far as anyone is aware; he still had the tools available to him, and with Molly's help it would be a much easier accomplishment.
[b “If it's today's footage you want we'll need to do it soon. I'll work with Molly so I'll help out too, but only if we're going to go about this the smart way.”]
Nathan paused at that statement as it made something else click into place though. He cast a glance at Chrysanth before focusing his attention on Jherrichho and giving a wide smile that was only visible by the effect around his eyes. [b “Molly and I will handle it. We'll have the footage for you tomorrow and we can meet in the newspaper room. Nobody's going to be using it for a while anyway.”]
Nathan's declaration drew Molly's attention to him, but she was quick to throw her support behind him. [b “It's a promise.”]
[+teal [i He IS like me,]] Chrysanth realized as Jherrichho spoke, eyes widening slightly.
[+purple Interesting,] the voice in Chrys’s head purred. The girl shrugged it off, focusing on what was being told to her.
[+teal “It can be scary to have another side of yourself that you don’t understand,”] Chrys whispered back, vibrant blue eyes locked on the boy. She wanted to say more, but couldn’t because that was when Nathan walked up. Chrys straightened up, but took a step back to allow herself to slightly fade into the background. She knew she was the person that everybody was going to trust least just out of virtue of the fact that none of them knew her and only saw the cold persona she put on for them.
Once Dark Jherrichho started speaking, annoyance slowlynstarted trickling into her. [+teal [i At least [b try] to sound like the normal Jherrichho. These guys are going to be suspicious of you now,]] she thought in exasperation. The voice in her head luckily remained quiet, knowing that it was just as unsubtle as Dark Jherrichho.
Chrys’s eyes shot open when Jherrichho offered to show Nathan what his Potential did to his arm, instantly alert. [+teal “What the hell are you thinking?”] she hissed softly, worried. She snapped her jaw shut at the wink he gave her, rubbing her forehead and deciding just to let him go through with his plan. Maybe he knew something she—
The steam she had seen when Dark Jherrichho has taken over. Chrys’s eyes shot up to land on her friend. Could the arm be healed?
[+teal [i If it’s healed... oh you are one tricky sonofabitch,]] she thought slyly, working hard to keep her amusement off her face.
When Molly showed up, Chrys went back to being as stoic as possible. She listened to the plan, she’d mouth slightly twisting downward. Molly was very much a do-gooder, someone who always followed the rules. She wouldn’t agree to do something so blatantly against the rules like stealing security footage unless there was a really, really good reason.
Looks like to was up to Chrysanth to provide that reason. Her eyes shot to Dark Jherrichho when he spoke to her, and she nodded before crossing her arms. She bummed out loud in thought for a moment.
[+teal “I know that what Jherrichho is saying sounds ridiculous and dumb,”] she said, clearly not caring about how harsh she might sound. [+teal “Asking you to take security footage is a huge, huge deal. But he isn’t being overboard here, he’s... he’s missing chunks of his memory from [i today]. And...”] Chrysanth’s mouth turned into a full frown, her eyebrows slightly furrowing in worry. [+teal “I know it doesn’t sound like much, but while he was in the office I felt as if something was [i wrong]. I was about to leave to ditch the rest of the day because the feeling was too heavy to ignore, and I saw a man and a woman I had never seen before leaving the school. The way the man felt... that wasn’t natural. I don’t know if he has anything to do with what is going on with Jherrichho, but something tells me that we need to figure out who that man is if we want to figure out what’s going on,”] she knew that she was most likely catching Nathan and Molly off guard. After all, Chrysanth hardly ever spoke more than a sentence unless forced to by a teacher. Hopefully her little speech would show her how important this was.
[+teal “And that tremor... it couldn’t have been a normal one,”] she spoke softly, barely loud enough for the two people with them to hear. [+teal “A tremor that big would have been felt all across the city if it was normal. My mother would have called me, she always notifies me when a tremor that big happens because it always knocks glass off the shelves that’s i have to repair if we want to be able to sell it, but I haven’t gotten a single text from her. If you guys can at least figure out if that tremor was only felt around the school, that could show you that something weird is going on. Why would only [i this building] shake and there be no announcement about it?”]
Jherrichho smiled slightly at her question, something that didn’t happen often in this state. Of corse he’d relish the chance to speak after being locked away inside for so long. It hit him harder than he had expected, the interest in all of this.
[+purple “A good question”], he said as he buttoned up his jacket. [+purple “If I’m making things as simple as possible I am Jherrichho, but also something else. Something darker, more demonic than he can muster on his own. I am power, yet he sees me as a weakness. Through his releasing of emotions I can tear through the barrier he has in place that holds me back. It’s the way of projection that decides how dangerous he becomes. The purple, on the other hand, is me. If his eyes are like this then it’s me. You’ll tell if he’s feeling it himself.”]
He looked around for a moment before approaching her and standing right by her side. Just close enough to speak in a lower voice yet still have Chrys hear him. [+purple “He’s always filled with fear because he knows me just as I know him. We are the same, yet far too different.”] Jherrichho sighed and crossed his arms. [i [+maroon I’m... not weak... I'm... still fighting...] ] His thoughts pleaded with him, unavoidable and unable to be ignored. [+purple “He struggles for peace because he fears what he might do if left unchecked. Yet he can’t struggle too much or it will force its way out. He hopes for balance but doesn’t understand why his potential is so heavy a burden. He’ll find out soon enough though”], he said as his eyes shot to her.
His cheeks lit up a bright red and he shook his head a bit. [+purple “It’s hard to believe that I can’t keep him from doing that even when I’m in control”], he said under his breath. The quiet didn’t last long though as his ears twitched and a smile stretched across his face. [+purple “Now we’ve got company. Let’s get this over with quickly so I can rest again.”] He stood up strait and looked at the school side entrance to the meeting spot. His eyes sharpened and the purple glow focused on the figure that came around the corner. It seemed that Nathan would be the first to arrive.
[+purple “I wouldn’t say better, but there are no more annoyances”], he started before straitening out his face. [+purple “I’ll make this quick. I’m going to need your help with something. Once Molly arrives I’ll elaborate but for now I’ll give you your incentive.”] Jherrichho lifted his bandaged arm up and raised his sleeve. [i [+maroon Don’t... make that... promise.] ] His thoughts pleaded as a sinister smile overtook his face. [+purple “If you two can manage to help me I will show you what my potential did to this arm. No games, no hidden agendas, just something no one else has ever seen. That’s my offer to you if this works out”], he said before turning to Chrys and giving a devilish wink. [+purple “My potential isn’t something I can freely just show, but this is at least something I can show you.”]
Just as he finished a voice from the end of the alley caught his attention, but it was a familiar voice. A tall figure rose up and a smile could be seen on her face. [+purple “Molly, I’m glad you could come on such short notice. I’ll be blunt. Something isn’t right and I need the resource between the two of you to help me discover what that is.”] He made sure to keep himself between the and Chrys. Although he wasn’t as tall as her Jherrichho wouldn’t allow too much attention to be brought to her. [+purple “If you’re willing to accept I need to see the security footage for the school. I know the room that keeps all the security footage is in the school and I don’t know if either of you have access to their equipment. Either way it would make things much easier with your help.”]
He tightened his scarf and looked around to see if anyone else was listening to their conversation. [+purple “It’s your choice if you choose to help, but I will act on my own if I must”], he said before turning to Chrys leaning in close. [+purple “If you want to say anything now is the time. I don’t know exactly how you feel about the plan itself, but I’m open to any changes if you have suggestions”], he whispered before turning back to the others and leaning against the wall. All he had to do was keep from being too harsh and this would go easily. Simple.
[h3 [center Molly]]Nathan said to keep everything a secret even if it meant she had to lie to do it. Lies were something to be avoided as honest communication had been integral to her ability to work as the president. She knew there were little lies that everyone used everyday, but this did not feel the same. Jherrichho was hurt enough that even Nathan was concerned for his well being and they were meeting outside of the school instead of with the nurse. The nurse even had a potential that could help!
Of course Chrysanth was involved and that muddied the waters. Molly thought well of her given her work ethic, but she had no way to truly judge the woman after all of her attempts at communication were shot down. Nathan said she should be cautious about this meeting. She hated to admit that he might be right that Chrysanth might not be the most trustworthy individual. Maybe she was a part of that carnivorous world she talked about.
The thoughts made Molly sick as she made her way to Mr. Ramirez's class using a less traveled route. She might stick out like a sore thumb thanks to her popularity and her height, but she knew the layout of the school better than anyone. A benefit of having been the leader of multiple organizations throughout the school. Years of maneuvering objects through the halls meant she knew everything there was to know about visibility, and although she would never admit it there were times she had used that knowledge to avoid anyone stopping her during her travels. There were times when even she just wanted to be alone.
She managed to make it to Mr. Ramirez's class undetected and managed to get her bike away stealthily. After that she had a clear path to the meeting spot. It would take her a while to get there that way though as she had to crouch to keep from being seen from a distance. One of the drawbacks of being so tall was that she stood out. Usually she liked that as it made it easier for the rest of the student body to find her when they needed something, but now it just hampered her.
Her slow pace left her with more time to think about what all of this could mean. She had watched Chrysanth plenty during their tenure at the school and today was the first she could remember seeing her talking to Jherrichho. Did he manage to win her over in just a day? That sounded absurd on the surface, but maybe he was just the perfect person to break down the wall that she had around her heart. It was far more likely though that they had just hidden their relationship. Chrysanth was a very private individual after all and so her keeping her relationship a secret made perfect sense. It also explained why she was so closed off at school because she could only be free elsewhere.
Those thoughts calmed her system as she made her approach to the dark place where they would meet. The rest of them were already there, but she knew better than to shout a greeting. Instead she just rose to her full height with a smile and quietly said what she hoped they would want to hear.
[b “I'm here to help.”]
[h3 [center Nathan]][b “That's what I hoped you'd say.”]
He did not get to say another word though as she beat a hasty retreat out the door. She was free to rush if that was what she felt best, but he was going to continue to grab things that could be of importance. They could catch him off guard just not unarmed. That and there was a tinge of something else that motivated him to make sure that he had all the supplies that he might need. Although he could not place it; he just shrugged it off as a lizard brain impulse.
Once he was sure of his supplies he turned back to the door just in time to see Maurica come back in. She may have been quick to make her way to the meeting, but she apparently did not know they school as well as Molly did. It made him smile as he made his way over to her.
[b “How about I just lead the way?”]
While they made their way through the school Nathan went through his backpack to make sure that everything was secured. He also got out anything that he might need for the time being. His scarf went around his neck again, a few tools made their way into his pockets, along with one of his drinks. After that he secured it to his back and made his way out of the school with Maurica.
They were only feet from the door when Maurica called out a name Nathan didn't recognize. It was enough to slow him down, but even Maurica was quick to say they should move to help his 'friend'; that was going to be a fun explanation. Just another step away from the door though and Maurica apparently spotted Jason. A calm black rat that casually walked out of the bushes before she made an attempt to scoop him up. Something that he resisted enough to irritate her.
[b “If you're sure.”]
Nathan hesitated for a moment longer as he remembered her having to come back to get directions to the meeting spot, but made his way forward once she sat down. He cursed that there were bigger problems at the moment as he would have liked to stick around. She had definitely turned out to be interesting enough to be worth talking to though and it made him glad that he had invited her on this little excursion. Even if she might not actually make it to the meeting.
It did not take Nathan long to find the two even in the poorly lit area. A benefit of his good eyesight was that he got to see a bit more than most, and it made him quick to notice the shape that Jherrichho was in. He definitely had something interesting to share and Nathan would be sure to find it out. There would be no benefit to the rest of the public as his days as a journalist were over, but Nathan had his own motivations for wanting to learn about potential. Especially as he had yet to unlock his own.
[b “Feeling better?”]
It was more a statement of fact than a question at this point, but Nathan kept a smile on his face as he said it. Just for good practice as his scarf should block their view. Of course either one of them could have a potential that included x-ray vision for all that knew about them at the moment. Best to be polite all things considered.
Chrys noticed almost right away that Jherrichho seemed to be thinking pretty hard about something, so she left him alone as she got them into place. The girl’s vibrant blue eyes never left him though, concerned about his new silence and everything that seemed to suddenly be happening during what was supposed to be a normal day. Chrys kept an eye out for him when he leaned up against a wall, staying aware of their surroundings for him. When he spoke again, she looked over at him with wide eyes. Nothing to lose?
[+teal “... I trust you,”] she admitted softly, surprised at her own admission. When was the last time she trusted somebody? Her mother, maybe. That was the only other person that came to mind that Chrysanth truly trusted, her Mom being the person she trusted [i least] in comparison. And she had only known Jherrichho for one day. One. The fact that she already trusted him was something she had never even imagined as being possible for her, but there was something about that boy that called to her and made her feel comfortable.
It was terrifying.
The girl watched as Jherrichho pushed st his own bruises, alarmed but willing to watch as he did something that was clearly planned out. The new voice made Chrys blink, fighting bac surprise. It sounded... familiar.
[+purple That kind of sounds like us] the voice in her head mused, sounding slightly curious. It wasn’t the exact same voice, but they were definitely similar. Chrysanth’s mouth suddenly felt dry. Was he... was Jherrichho like her?
Luckily, the blush on his face when he looked at her made Chrys relax. It was still him, though maybe a different aspect. It wasn’t a completely new person. The anger in his eyes did not even make her nervous, simply curious. It was a side of him she hadn’t seen yet, and despite the anger being foreign she was not at all afraid of it. Anger was natural, healthy, normal. She could deal with that, emotions being something she knew better than anything else and was comfortable with.
Slowly, Chrysanth felt herself grinning. Her eyes glinted in soft amusement and pleasant surprise as she watched the boy... her newest friend, in front of her. [+teal “You’re full of surprises, aren’t you?”] was the first thing she said, amusement coloring her tone. [+teal “I was worried about the trust, but it seems like you have things under control now. I have to admit, using their connections to gather information is pretty clever,”] she told him, clearly approving of the plan. [+teal “As for questions...”] she trailed off, observing him quietly for a moment.
[+teal “Who... or what, are you?”] she asked softly, unable to hold back her curiosity. [+teal “You aren’t the same Jherrichho, that much is obvious. A different side of him? Or a different personality in general?”] she mused out loud, shifting her position as she voiced her guesses out loud. [+teal “calmest form... no pain... then this purple state is part of his— or your, I suppose— Potential? He said it harnesses emotion to go past his body’s limits, so would that mean that you don’t feel pain right now?”] she kept her voice low enough so only he could hear her the whole time, her eyes still scanning around every few seconds. Their company would be arriving soon, but hopefully not before she got her two answers.
The more she learned about Jherrichho, it seemed, the more she liked him. He was different, new, pure and innocent yet filled with mystery. It was refreshing and... and she still felt comfortable around him in a way she never felt comfortable around anyone. It was odd, and scary, but somehow also fun and exciting. She found herself eager to see what was going to happen next if she stuck near him.
As they walked he smiled slightly from her words. There was harshness, but he knew there was truth to what Chrys had said. [+maroon “I think you’re more of an angel than you think. It’s not about what’s seen as good, it’s more so about doing what must be done.”] He reached down and presses his hand on his stomach, the pain shooting through his body. [+maroon ”I make mistakes all the time and if I’m being honest I wouldn’t know if I’m making the right choices. I just have to trust in others and hope it works out.”]
[i [+maroon That part of you will destroy us, everyone who trusts in you will fall due to that heart of yours. You’ll learn soon enough.] ]
Jherrichho bit his lip softly before frowning. He couldn’t help but be silent for a moment as they reached their destination. He looked away from Chrys as he let his mind race. Was he putting her in danger? He would keep her secrets beyond all things, a promise would not be broken. [i [+maroon I won’t put her in danger, I refuse to do that. Yet you so eagerly involved her with yourself. You betray your words with actions. Wanting to be better for others does not betray what I have decided. I’m not so easily swayed and everyone knows that. And everyone is who exactly? Who have you shown your hate? Who have you shared your pain with? Who has seen your sorrow? Who has experienced your fears? Who knows how your love feels? You want things to work a specific way, yet you know it’s no longer in your control the way you want it to be! So what are you doing?] ]
His eyebrows furrowed and his breathing sped up slowly. He could feel his heart rate rising as the pain in his stomach significantly rose. [i [+maroon You feel it don’t you? That pain, it’s just at its limit. You’ll see just how much trust people have in the you that’s always hidden away.] ]
He stepped away from Chrys and leaned against the nearest wall, a worried look on his face. It was quiet, no one else had made it there yet. No one would be making their way here other than those he had requested, so for now he had to do this before anyone else could see. [i [+maroon So you aim to prove me wrong do you? Don’t think it’ll be me, it’s all you. These emotions are the incarnations of your feelings, your insecurities. So in a way it’s the real you... well, only part of you. That’s what your potential has become, separation and snuffing out. But can you really snuff me out?] ] He turned his eyes to Chrys and smiled for a moment. [+maroon “I trust you, so please trust me. If things go south I’ll take care of it. After all I don’t have anything to lose.”]
He pressed his hand against the bruise on his stomach and pushed against it as hard as he could. Everything turned a deep purple for a moment before going black, but once his vision returned to normal he looked at his arm to see the steady stream of smoke rising from underneath the bandages before fading away. [+purple “Well, now this is awkward. I haven’t felt this way in almost a year but I have to say it feels much better than it did before”], he said as he lifted himself up onto his feet. [+purple “I’m going to cut strait to the point. He plans to use their connections to do some digging and research. If I can find out what happened, or at least who I saw in that period of time that I don’t recall then I may be able to figure out what the hell is going on.”]
Not much light reached them in the location he chose and it kept it just dark enough for distant people to have trouble noticing them. There was more anger in his eyes than he had shown all school year, yet the look seemed more natural than his smile. He wasn’t showing any signs of pain and his posture was more stoic than it normally was, yet it didn’t stop him from blushing when he looked at Chrys and started to speak again, the center of his pupils now a glowing purple. [+purple “Look, I’m not very used to talking like this... I find myself more in your debt than I realized. This boy sees something in you that gives him just enough feeling to give in to those feelings. So, thank you”], he said before tightening his scarf around his neck.
[+purple “Pain has a certain threshold that he’s keen to avoiding, but at least now I’ll be able to take his place in this meeting he set up. Trust can only go so far, and I am going to make sure these people understand where I stand.”] He threw his jacket back over his shoulders and sighed. [+purple “If you have any questions for me feel free to ask. It’s the least I can do for all you’ve done, and I know he won’t answer any questions that go too deep due to the fear of his potential going to far. To his luck this is the calmest form his potential has, and I feel nothing. No pain, no suffering. So fire away.”]
Maurica mentally chided herself when the girl told Maurica her name. Molly! Of course. She knew that, she totally did. Well, maybe not [i knew ] knew exactly, but she had at one point. [i And ] now she was beating herself up about it.
Maurica turned her attention back to Molly, who was standing near her, examining her work. She was quite pretty, and not just in the superficial way she had previously noted. There was real beauty lying there too. It unsettled her, somehow.
It was then that Molly started gushing about Maurica's project, which unsettled her even more and filled her cheeks with hot blood. Sure, she thought it was pretty good, she had spent about a month and a half on the original, but this was just a lame recreation. She hadn't spent much time on it at all, and, to top that she wasn't even a very good artist. And she should know, her mom was an amazing artist. Her dad used to joke that art was her mom's potential, since hers still hadn't officially came about. Maurica was starting to believe that her dad might not have been joking as much as she had thought. Her mom had a way with art, the paint, the wood. She always told Maurica to let the supplies do what they wanted, instead of forcing them to try to do what she wanted, but Maurica always ended up with a terrible mess.
Maybe it was paper that she was good at. She had always thought that books felt alive, and books were made of paper, so maybe it was the paper arts that were her calling? Or perhaps Molly just didn't know art well enough to know what was good or not, not that there was any such thing as "good" art, though there is a generally accepted consensus that some art is better than other art, and hers was closer to the "bad" end of that spectrum. So Molly just had a wildly different idea of what was good art than most people did. Or she was just trying to please her guest. Or maybe Maurica actually was quite good, but didn't think so because she had been subjected to so much of her mom's art, which was absolutely gorgeous.
Maurica was just about to explain to Molly why, no, this piece of paper with other pieces of paper on top of it is not great art when the door slammed open and raven boy, of all people, burst through. Seeing him again she realized how distinctly raven-y he was, and how wrong she had been on her first judgement of him. Well, you can't always hit the nail on the head the first time.
He seemed in a hurry, which did not seem at all like him, though she really didn't know him very well and he could have just been in a hurry for the sake of getting there faster. It still felt like something was off. Very off.
He shouted Molly's name, and then her own, and then he said something about someone and someone else being hurt and Molly needing to come help and then Molly left with a stupid worthless apology and suddenly Maurica was in the room alone with raven-thing and had no idea what just happened.
Flustered was the first word she retrieved from her flustered mind. It was a good word, too, she thought. Bit by bit, things started to piece themselves together. Once she had the a word, any word, it was easy to sort out the jumbled mess of meanings. She really thought animals could benefit from something to attach their meanings to, but almost every animal she had mentioned this to retorted saying that the meanings were already attached to the meanings. Maurica blamed herself for not knowing how to ask the question properly.
Raven had been raiding the room for supplies while Maurica had been trying to figure out what had just happened, probably staring blankly at the table the whole time. A few moments later he asked if Maurica would like to come along. And he mentioned their date. Their [i DATE.] Had the situation not obviously been so dire she would have had something to say about that. Or perhaps she'd just get all flustered again, but now was not the time to get flustered because he was telling her something else!
Dangerous. He was telling her it might be dangerous. Nope, correction: He was telling her [i they] might be dangerous.
She still didn't know what was going on. She [i had] to know what was going on.
[+olive "Are you kidding? Of course I'm coming! Nobody knows what's going on!"]
Maurica got up and rushed out the door, only to realize that she was probably a little too excited about this, as someone might be dying, but then again, someone might be dying, and nobody knew what was going on! A couple more steps out the door and she realized she had no idea where she was going. Some back alley...or something? It infuriated her that Molly knew where to go and she didn't. She sheepishly walked back into the room to face a most likely startled raven.
[+olive "Hey, uh, sorry, for running out like that. I don't know where we're going. Something about an alley?" ]
They had just left the school building when Maurica realized something.
[+olive "Jason! Oh, crud, I told him I'd be here to pick him up after school, he won't be here for a while." [i I'm useless without that rat.] "Ack! it doesn't matter, your friend's in trouble and there could be people chasing us or something--oh good, you're here!" ]
The black rat had just slunk out of the bushes, looking much more placid than usual. Maurica bent down, stretching out her arm so he could climb up onto her shoulder. The rat didn't move.
[+olive "Ugh, come on Jason, I don't have time to explain to you why I don't have time for this!"] Maurica glanced up at Raven. [+olive "Sorry about this. You can go, I'll just be a minute."]
Maurica sat all the way down as she figured it would be safer for her if for some reason Jason wanted her to take control. She stared at Jason and her eyes deadened, the irises dulling substantially. Her body froze.
Maurica channeled her mind to hit the same frequencies as the rat's and entered. It was open, wide open, somehow feeling more open than it usually did and she entered easily.
She was quickly overwhelmed by whirling thoughts of pain and fear and stupid angry people who looked stupid and weird, even weirder than most people did, and blood--lots of blood--and a boy?
Suddenly she was spat out of the rat's mind, though whether this was Jason's doing or hers she wasn't sure. What she did know was that the force of the exit had knocked her backwards, leaving her sprawled on the ground. She wanted to curl up in a ball and cry, but she couldn't, because she wasn't Jason and those weren't her feelings and she had bigger, more important things to attend to, like raven's problem, although the more she thought about it, the more she figured that Jason's and raven's problems could be one in the same.
[+olive "Goddammit Jason!"] Maurica hissed through her teeth.
[h3 [center Nathan]]Nathan's eyes widened at the sudden change in the woman's expression. He did not expect to be welcomed by his fellow loner given what he knew of her, but he was caught off guard by just how cold her expression was to him. It took effort on his part to keep from letting his smile falter any. She already did not like him despite having never shared a conversation with him and so he wanted to do his best to not make things any worse. Especially as he was having trouble recalling her name as the only thing that came to mind was flower.
Jherrichho took him up on his offer despite flower lady's icy reception. That was not so much a surprise to him as he knew the boy to be better at going along with the group than her, and Nathan was quick to take a step to offer him a shoulder. The surprise that stopped him was when he was instructed to recruit Molly. He wanted them all to get together at a spot behind the school that connected to some of the alleyways the lead to town. To request the two of them to skip school with him was enough to pique Nathan's interest.
[b “Consider it done.”]
Nathan gave a nod at the offer of something interesting, but he was off and running at the instruction to hurry. The chance of an adventure got his mind to race as he made his way to the student council room. There were plenty of potentially poor possibilities given their meeting place. None of them were bad enough to make him hesitate though as he prepared himself for the worst that they could bring to the table. He doubted they were going to try to jump them, but he was ready nonetheless.
Despite his lack of participation in any of the athletic clubs he was still able to maintain a reasonably fast pace thanks to his own effort. His interests put him in danger on enough occasions that he had trained with Molly some to properly run. He was not as fast as the athletic superstar that was the president and his editor, however it was more than enough to get him to the student council room in a timely fashion. Thanks to his working relation with Molly he was not an uncommon sight there.
[b “Molly's not here?”]
All the heads in the room turned to him and it was clear that Molly was absent from the room. She stood out by her presence alone in most rooms and that was before you took into account the fact that she towered over the average person. Especially in the boots that she was wearing that day. Still the fact that the council was getting things ready without her was a surprise.
[b “She hasn't shown up yet.”] Her vice president did not sound worried about it, but there was an audible sigh from some of the other council members at their statement. Nathan was quick enough on his feet though to counter it.
[b “Well if she's not here there has to be a good reason for it; this is Molly we're talking about. If I figure it out I'll let you know.”]
There was a collective nod in agreement and a lone saying of thanks before Nathan made his way out of the room. If she wasn't there then she could be just about anywhere. That said there was one place that he knew was a good possibility as he had seen her there not that long ago. Just as any good detective would he made his way to her last known location.
[h3 [center Molly]]The woman declined her additional offers of help, but seemed to take to the work in front of her well enough. She clearly had an idea of what she wanted to do with it. So once Molly was sure that she was all set she left the woman to her work and got back to what was left of her own. Even with the declined offers there was still a visible visible smile on her face as she sat at her computer.
While she was done with the editing work on the last edition of the newspaper there was still work that could be done. The first being outlines for the decorating work that would go into the graduation. Proper planning prevents poor performance after all, and since this was her last work as student president she wanted it to serve as a proper sendoff to all of her classmates. They had all put in so much work these past few years. After all of that they deserved to be celebrated as they started the next chapter of their stories without the structural support of school.
The work needed to map out the decorations was easy compared to the work required to proofread a newspaper. It was flying by when she felt a sensation similar to an earthquake. Not that rare an occurrence in the moving city, but an unusual one given the lack of any surrounding symptoms around the tremor. While it did not damage her work any it did bring her out of her groove. Before she had an opportunity to find out just how long she had been focused in on the work in front of her though; she was interrupted by her lovely guest.
Maurica. Molly had forgotten the first thing about politeness and not bothered to introduce herself! Sure she could expect that Maurica might know her given all the positions she filled. That did not excuse the rudeness of having not referred to her by name though, and that was ignoring the possibility that the young lady had any memory problems. She couldn't help but blush as she realized the error. Although she shook it off with a smile as quickly as she could to keep things from getting even worse.
[b “It is a pleasure to meet you Maurica; I'm Molly Coleman. Sorry about the belated introduction. I would love to see what you made, but I have to warn you I'm not the best at artistic projects.”]
It was the only subject that she actively avoided throughout her school career. She did well enough when it had to do with the written word, but when it came to the visual arts it was as though she didn't have a dominant hand. The best project she had ever made was a sketchy comic that the public believed involved animal characters. They were meant to be human. That was what prompted her to focus her efforts where the results were better.
Her lack of artistic skills did not stop her from being able to appreciate the fruits of others labor though. It also would not stop her from offering what assistance she could. Especially as the advice Maurica requested related to the organization of the piece, and organization was an area where Molly was confident. She was the one that organized the newspaper room and the student council room after all. All a part of her belief in the adage of proper planning preventing poor performance, and admittedly something that carried over to her home life as her own room was frightening organized.
All of her confidence in her organizational skills waned though when she saw the piece in question. It was not what she had expected. Maurica had put together a far more clever concept than Molly would have ever come up with for the piece herself. That made her hesitate in giving any advice on it. What do you say as a layman when someone as talented as Michelangelo asks you for advice?
[b “It's good. I would have never thought to use the paper that way, and you did such a good job on it. Honestly it makes me hesitant to offer any advice. You've done such a good job so far I don't want to risk ruining anything by running my mouth.”]
Molly said it all with a smile as she took in the picture and deliberated. Just getting to enjoy a nice piece of art was worth it and so she made sure to smell the roses so to say. It did also give her more time to map the layout of the scene in her mind. She might be hesitant to give advice, but it was something that Maurica had requested of her. So with the forewarning of her skills there she would do her best to help. She barely got a word out of her mouth though when she was cut off by the door being thrown open.
[h3 [center Joint]][b “Molly! Maurica?”] Nathan was surprised to see both of them there, but was quick to literally shake it off with a shake of his head. [b “Pardon the intrusion. Jherrichho needs your help Molly, and asked for us to meet him behind the school. That woman in your homeroom with the flower name was helping him out already, but he seemed to be in pretty bad shape.”]
He made sure not to include mention of the offer of something interesting, but the smile on his face probably betrayed his interest. Molly had known him long enough to know what made him happy after all. Maurica could probably see it on the other hand by virtue of the unique contents of their early morning conversation. Still he gave more than enough to pique Molly's interest as well. She recognized the name Jherrichho as the man that Chrys had been with during lunch, and if they were asking her for help she would do everything she could to help them.
She was already helping Maurica though. Her indecision was visible as she looked from Maurica to Nathan and the artwork that Maurica had put so much work into. It took only a few seconds for her to come to a decision despite the difficulty. Maurica was important that was true, but she was asking about art and Jherrichho was apparently in physical distress. There was a simple difference of scale.
[b “I'm sorry Maurica, but I promise to help you out another time. If Jherrichho's in as bad of shape as Nathan says I need to hurry to help him out. I'll be back as soon as I can though.”]
Nathan stopped her when she got to the door though and whispered a few more things to her before she left. After she left Nathan made his way to the storage on the back wall to raid it for materials. He may not have the same belief in the adage as Molly, but he still wanted to be prepared for any possibility those two might present. Especially after that look that Chrysanth had leveled at him.
[b “I'm glad you're here Maurica. Jherrichho told me to meet him in that back alley, but I'll admit I'm not sure what's going on. Since I'd hate to miss out on our date you're welcome to join me now.”]
He may not exactly trust Maurica given they had just met this morning, but he trusted her a whole lot more than he trusted Chrysanth. There was also the fact that she seemed to trust him if what she said was true. Even if he was just reading too far into things he wanted to be sure to do right by her nonetheless. She had been kind to him in a moment of difficulty and that was enough to warrant kindness in turn.
[b “Full disclosure I have no idea what will happen, or how dangerous this might be. They might just jump us as soon as we go out the door. Whatever waits outside that door though; I'd be happy to have you along for the adventure.”]
Chrysanth nodded when Jherrichho spoke, grinning slightly. [+teal “You’re no burden, and I agree—“] she was cut off by an unwelcome voice, her face immediately going stony and cutting off any of the warmth that had been present there. Her eyes, cold and icy again, swerved to land on the newcomer. Nathan.
Oh yes, she knew [i him] by name, despite never speaking to him. She made it her personal goal to avoid him, considering his position in the school newspaper and the fact that he specifically reported on and investigated Potentials. He, just by that hobby of his alone, was high up on Chrys’s never-trust list, and even on her much shorter use-force-if-necessary list. She frowned when Jherrichho actually accepted help from the reporter, not pleased at all.
[+purple [i This boy...]] the voice in her head growled in disapproval. Chrys couldn’t help but find her self agreeing. [+teal [i He is much too trusting,]] she thought. [+teal [i I don’t want to ruin his innocence, but I can’t stick around if he continues being naive like this.]]
Chrysanth waited until there was no chance of being overheard, but still spoke in a whisper just in case. [+teal “You can’t just trust some right away, especially not someone who puts everything he discovers in a public record,”] she scolded gently, careful not to sound mad but worried instead. Oh well, at least she knew she could turn the situation in her favor again if need be—but using her Potential was out of the question. Especially around two people she didn’t trust— Nathan and Molly, if she came. Knowing the do-gooder, Chrys suspected she would.
[+teal “But you’re right, something has to be missing from your memory. Everything you just said makes no sense,”] she admitted softly. [+teal “You said your potential is strong, right? It has to be, to destroy your arms...”] she frowned and thought back on the minutes after he had disappeared, when she had been chugging water. [+teal “There was a tremor not long after you went to the office...”] she thought out loud. [+teal “That could have been you, if you’re ability is as strong as we think. But there’s no rubble, no damage to anything that I saw. Something strong enough to make a tremor like that would have left a mark, we should at least be able to smell dust from the ruined plaster or brick walls, but nothing,”] she told him, voice still a whisper. [+teal “Something really isn’t right. We’re missing something. I don’t have a memory tea though, I’ve been trying to make one...but it doesn’t quite work that way. I can’t just poof up a tea to solve any problem I want,”] she confessed, sighing. [+teal “If you think getting help is a good idea, I’ll stand by your decision. For now. But if I think either of them is going to put us in danger, I won’t hesitate to knock them out and leave them in the dust.”]
With that said, she began to lead him down the path he had mentioned before. [+teal “I know it sounds harsh, but this world will swallow you up if you don’t protect yourself. I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt for you, but I’m not an angel.”]
All posts are either in parody or to be taken as literature. This is a roleplay site. Sexual content is forbidden.