Aug 22nd, 2019
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  1. Bibbit Jinh
  2. It was quiet, mid afternoon, rainy. Nobody was around. She stepped into the foyer, shaking rain off her jacket, a spray of drops from her hair. Roughly she ran a hand from neck to scalp, spiking it up while glancing around the main room. Empty. Silent. With nobody to worry about charming her way forward, Kiki strode across the room with none of her usual swagger or bluster, calm, collected, businesslike. This was the address...and checking the numbers on the doors, she noted the clinic, her mouth hardening into a grim line. Dark eyes flat, hard. Cold. She rapped on the door, waited, then called. "Doctore Musa?"
  5. Hop
  6. Shiori worked within her office, humming to herself as she stirred her pot. She added a dash of herbs, the green-colored broth immediately beginning to steam and turn blue. Only a few minutes, and the healing salve would be perfect. She took a drink of her orange tea, and sighed contentedly. But then the knock on the door.
  7. She wheeled around, looking at the door. No appointments today, none all week in fact. And moreso, an unfamiliar voice. She thought for a moment, then shrugged. Maybe someone referred her, although the voice sounded suspiciously calm for a sudden unannounced visit to a surgeon's clinic. The Raen licked her lips, and raised her voice, calling out from within her kitchen. "Yes, this is she. The office is closed, I'm afraid, if you wish to schedule an appointment, you can do so by signing the ledger by the door. Or if this is a solicitation, I do not wish to explore it. No loitering on my premises, please." She shrugged and went back to work, continuing to stir at the pot.
  10. Bibbit Jinh
  11. She was aware of her pulse quickening at the confirmation. It had taken a couple of weeks, careful questions probing about a raen, a doctor, where she might be now. The story was usually different after a couple of retellings, just a messenger trying to pass on news of family, trying to make a delivery or somesuch. Fleeting names and descriptions of people she'd come into contact with, crawling her way closer until the innocent smiles of a free drink brought her the name of the company. Perhaps she ought to schedule an appointment and come back another time, but with things deliciously quiet, there might not be a better one. That, and she didn't want to spook her, and have her do a runner, even if she enjoyed the chase. Quick, and clean. "I'm not here to solicit, Doctore, merely to ask a few questions to satisfy this missing persons report. I will take up no more than a few moments of your time, if you'll allow me."
  14. Hop
  15. Shiori chewed at her cheek. She deliberated her possibilities--obviously this sudden appearance was suspect. If it were the authorities and she didn't comply, she would be held under suspicion, and everything would be at risk. If it weren't... the outcome could be even worse. She grunted distastefully, pulling the sharpest knife from the knife rack, and stowed it under her shirt, careful to line it against her scales and not her flesh, lest blood begin to trickle down her white shirt. The Raen made her way to the door, knocking back upon it gently, as she slid aside from the door, laying against the wall beside it, suspiciously eyeing the wooden frame. "If you're with the Brass then I implore you to come back during business hours. I'm tired, and I'm brewing medicine at the moment. And if you desperately need to speak about it, we can do it as is. Otherwise, you will need a warrant to enter, as I have a sterile workspace that I'm not about to go cleaning up again right after I've just finished. I hope you understand."
  18. Bibbit Jinh
  19. "I'm a pathologist in fact, and was hoping you might assist in finding a Madame Onerys? Am I pronouncing that correctly?" She deliberately thickened her accent, playing on her foreign nature and leaning casually against the wall outside. Annoying that she was making this difficult, perhaps she ought to have just broken in while she wasn't home. "She has been noted to be associated for a number of.. Murders, and as you were one of the last people she was seen with..it does unfortunately implicate you. Or place you in danger. You, and one Noelle Retaneau. Sound familiar?" Kiki paused, a smile flickering at the corners of her mouth. She expected both of them were responsible but nothing rankled a sociopathic killer so much as someone else taking credit for their work. If she could just lure her out, it would make it easier to get at her, even using herself as bait. "I can wait, however. It seems nobody is here now, but I am sure your company will be willing to accommodate with information." She spoke mildly enough, innocent, though she knew well enough that the association might cast suspicion, and in turn lose business and trust in those nearby. Fishy though, that she didn't want to come out and play, or even entertain.(edited)
  22. Hop
  23. "Onery..." She sighed heavily, biting her lip. "Yes, I know her. She required surgery when miss Retaneau was building her a prosthetic arm, and we'd met at the Quicksand weeks before. But murders, you say... that can't be right..." Shiori lowered her gaze into a twisted expression of distaste and frustration. "I'll, um... yeah I'll help you out. Give me a minute to turn off the stove, I'll get the door." Whoever was on the other side of the door wasn't here to talk. Not only was Noelle Retaneau not involved in any of her and Onryou's machinations, aside from one, she was dead. Or she should be. Fucking knife-ear. Kiki clearly knew something that wouldn't be possible otherwise. Onery consumed her evidence... and Shiori disposed of her own. Shiori was compromised by virtue of association, and she would have to move again. Shiori plucked the elongated cutting blade from her belt, flipping it in her hand, pressing her palm to the door as she held the knife high, poised to strike through the thin wooden door. But before she made any rash decisions, she would ask one more thing, a last chance effort to confirm her suspicions. "...which department are you from, if I may ask?"
  26. Bibbit Jinh
  27. Kiki canted her head, short ears twitching at the faintest sound, like something pressing on the wood. She couldn't be sure though, and once again wished she wasn't so prone to spending time with loud instruments. All the same.. She trusted her gut, and moved back just a smidge, smoothly drawing her firearm. "Quite. All I have is witness affirmation of seeing her around the same time, and if she's innocent then she won't mind answering a couple of questions. Tried to find her girlfriend but.. Hmm.. She seems to have.. disappeared. Awfully convenient." Kiki stared at the door, fingers twitching as she waited. She wanted to say something cool, but was drawing a blank in the face of possible death. Still, just admitting she was alone was probably enough. Nothing she had said was strictly untrue, the best way to lie. "I am not with the Brass, Doctore. My name is Amadia di ibn Taba, and I am tracking a serial killer. A lone wolf, if you will." And I have come for your head, witch.
  30. Hop
  31. Shiori paused. Kiki had called her bluff. "And what is the name of this serial killer? Why would Onery be connected to them? What did he do to rope Onery in?"
  34. Bibbit Jinh
  35. "As far as I'm concerned, this Onery might well be the killer. And she might not. I'm just following a lead, Doctore. Are you going to open this door so we can talk, or do you intend to keep me out here waiting?" She slowly slipped the firearm back inside her jacket, though she kept her hand on the grip just in case the woman decided to try her luck.
  38. Hop
  39. Then she knows too much. If Onery's crimes were proven true, then it would link back to Shiori. She couldn't abide this. "Sorry, yeah... just the strange news has me off guard, that's all. Here, let me get the door..." she states. She pulls away from the door, slowly and steadily, raising the knife again. Her white eyes flash, and she pounds her fist into the door, the knife breaking through the wood cleanly. It would seek to plunge into Kiki's flesh through the frame, and if successful, would puncture her lung.
  42. Bibbit Jinh
  43. At the sound of the wood splintering, she twisted, felt the white hot lance of pain as the knife went into her ribs even stepping away from the door. A breathless grunt left her lips, blood bubbling in her throat as she drew and fired three shots at point blank range. Hip level, the door exploded into shrapnel as the rounds tore through it, bright holes in the dark hall.
  46. Hop
  47. Shiori had assumed her knife would at the least stun her target, possibly cripple. But she didn't count on it completely, already moving to evade whatever response may come. Unfortunately, she had predicted her enemy to carry a sword, or a knife, not hot lead. The wall shattered apart, one slug burying itself into her thigh, just barely missing her artery. But the splinters of wood rained down from the door, digging into her flesh as she fell to the floor beside the gurney. She quickly scrambled to her feet, the searing pain in her leg causing her to stumble as she flipped the metallic table over, items sprawling about onto the ground, taking refuge behind it. Her hands quickly rifled through the various tools. An iron file, two scalpels, a long white bedcloth, a phial of salve, and stray documents. She needed to get to her wardrobe, get to her blades, but it was one room over. And nothing but empty space between her shelter and the door.
  50. Bibbit Jinh
  51. Sticky warmth slicked her side, the pain making bright colours and dark spots pop in front of her eyes with each deep breath. She'd thought the door was thicker than that, kicked the ruins of the door in and stepped through the jagged opening. Shallow breaths, and it wasn't too bad. The table glared obstinately at her from across the room, blood on the floor. "I know what you did, Musa. Where's the other one? Where's Onery?" Kiki leveled her gun at the table, wincing as she stood waiting for the break.
  54. Hop
  55. There was no way that she could fall back, not with Kiki training her gun upon the gurney. And she had no reason to believe the Viera was anything less than an expert marksman. She needed a way to make a break, but even with an opportunity, she wasn't sure if her leg would hold out. The blood had run through her stocking, and she could only apply pressure to stop the leak. She'd already tried the salve, and it only helped alleviate the pain, not completely dampen it. Her one benefit was knowledge of her surroundings; Kiki had no idea what sort of tools she had at her disposal, be it armaments, or venom. A tiger, waiting in the brush, ready to tear the unaware to shreds. "...I've done many things, my love. Quit while you're behind. Continue, and I will devour you. As for Onery, I cannot speak. For I do not know. I may be lying, I may not. But it won't matter when I'm feeding you your own lungs!" She threw the white sheet over the gurney, and it splayed out in the air, unfurling wide into a canopy that would block the Viera's view of the table. Now was her chance to dart to the bedroom... but she didn't. She only hoped that Kiki thought she would break left towards it. Instead, Shiori mounted the table, flipping the scalpels around in her palms, darting like the tiger straight towards her, staying low and fast, swinging around as she brought both blades down on opposite sides of the Viera, each pointed with deadly precision at the arteries in her thighs, aiming to cripple her, mount her, and slice her neck open to gasp for air.
  57. Bibbit Jinh
  58. Her eyes wandered to the door on the other wall, narrowed. She didn't know where it went but there was a clear option here if she was going to run, and it'd be through there, or the shattered portal behind her. A frown crinkled her face at those words, expecting something daring. When she toosed the sheet, the woman simply sighed, and loosed a salvo of shots right at the damned thing. Clever, to use it as a distracting cover. Then she was on her, closing the distance. She couldn't tell quite how far, growled in frustration as she stepped back in front of the broken door, heart drumming. Nobody won in a knife fight. She'd just have to deal with it. Being tall meant she was a bigger target.. But she did have the extra reach. One leg lifted as she turned, swinging high, felt the blade biting into the leather top of her boot, punching into the soft meat of her thigh... Then her foot lashed out hard, aiming for that red bullseye on the woman's leg. Kiki swung her gun for good measure, close as they were, attempting to club her brains out.
  61. Hop
  62. The salvo of bullets played into the trap. Shiori saw pock-marks of cloth flutter through the air as time seemed to crawl to a stand still. Her face resembled that of a demon, eyes burning with desire and bloodlust, her mouth contorted into an empty and wicked grin as she felt one knife land into the leather, puncturing a hole through it, and drawing blood, sticking it deep, and leaving the steel punctured into Kiki's leg. But it wasn't enough of a bite. Shiori's other arm swung to hit the target... but she found the leg to be stronger than anticipated, and it landed squarely at the site of her wound. The frighteningly sharp pain gored through her, and she was sent sprawling backwards, hitting the floor hard and sliding back a few fulms, bumping back against the gurney. She howled in pain. One knife left. If only she had known her target was a Viera. Maybe she could have anticipated the leg strength. But Viera were so rare in the world outside of their home, how could she have possibly known?! She shouldn't have been thinking, as the shadowed figure of Kiki loomed over her, and the long butt of the rifle came crashing down towards her. She held up her arm, sacrificing it to stop the blow as the weapon pummeled into her forearm, feeling in an instant as the bone shattered in defense of the rest of her. She didn't even wince, the adrenaline coursing through her blocking all sensations aside from rage. Her leg was biting, and she'd lost an arm. But now, Kiki was visible, and she knew exactly where her enemy was. And she pushed her palm to the ground, flat, and uttered... "gravity."
  63. Space would warp underneath Kiki's legs, as the pressure and atmosphere collapsed in on itself like a dying star. The marble floor cracked and sunk in on itself, buckling under the aetherial weight, trapping the Viera in a vortex that should, theoretically, chain the woman to the ground, so that Shiori could paint her canvas with the knife, letting the Viera live out the last moments of her pitiful life in agony.
  66. Bibbit Jinh
  67. Magic. She could have spat the word, dripping with venom, for all her love of it. The real weakness right there, aether manipulation at its finest. She hated it, hated how the air seemed to draw her in and hold her there, legs weighing ten tons a piece, unable to move though her muscles screamed and fought against it, tensing and twitching. She'd be helpless...no, she wouldn't let it happen. At least there was some distance between them. She turned the metal on her hand with slick fingers, smearing the dial red over blue. "Clarice...how do I like my juice?" Kiki growled, the automaton materializing with a staggering thunk between them, and straightening up. For a second it stood unmoving, then the flat monotonous tone issued forth; "Activating defensive mode...initializing; Pulverizing Unexpected Liability Protocols." "Good girl...now pulp her." With Clarice blocking her immediate view and acting as an obstacle...as well as a damned fine shield, she'd have time to recover, sucking in a breath and removing the scalpel from her leg. Kiki dashed it against the wall, snapping the thin blade. In the meantime, Clarice trained its deadpan expression on Shiori, and began to move, reaching for her.
  70. Hop
  71. "Got you. Now stay still, would you? I'm going to make you beautiful," she snarled, spinning the scalpel in hand. She tried to push herself to her feet, but her leg gave out. And her broken arm could only lay limp at her side, swelling with blood inside the flesh and scale. But she crawled slowly towards the woman, huffing with fumes of righteous fury... Until Clarice materialized into play. Never underestimate the resourcefulness of these damned engineers... Noelle must be alive, then. Shiori's heart sank at the sight of the automaton, the metallic frame shimmering under the stale white light of the operating room. Clarice's iron fist swung down towards her, and Shiori had little time to react. Her previous incantation had done a number on her already, casting from her own aether instead of a source to channel from, having made a foolish mistake. But whatever arsenal this clanker had, she didn't want to find out. Her good arm raised, palm flat, as a protective dome sprouted forth from the fingertips, shielding herself from the pummeling blow. The bunker crackled as crystalline aether chipped and fragmented... but it held, for now. This Viera bitch was resourceful, and damned lucky. Every surprise Shiori had up her sleeve had been met in kind, but she wasn't played out yet. She just needed time, time to find her weapons, time to plan, time... and the gravity spell wouldn't hold out forever. If not for this impetuous metal... she'd be painting upon Kiki's lifeless corpse already.
  74. Bibbit Jinh
  75. "No...you'll just...uurghh..make another mistake. Eventually...they come back...and bite you in the arse." Wheezing, she stood in the gravity well, biding her time and watching them. It grated that she'd had enough strength to throw up a shield, sparks and flickering aether where the great metal arm connected with it. She had to respect her, even just a tiny bit. It took great willpower to keep fighting when you were already so broken, but then what alternative did she have? It was only ever going to go one way between them. Kiki choked a laugh, exploring the burning wound in her side and wondering how ordinary people got by without...this, the pain, the adrenaline. How did they know they were alive? The battery was blinking, already running low, like the pair of them. She still needed her answers though...only Shiori had those, and there wasn't much hope of getting them. First, they needed to get at her. "Clarice.." she paused, looking cooly at the doctor within her little haven, her gaze flat, empty. Dead. No pleasure in this, though she felt there should be...something. A shred of satisfaction perhaps, at being able to give Marie that security. But no...there was nothing. "Pile bunker." Tiny LED's lit along the side of the plating as the automaton rerouted excess power to its arms, a thin hiss of smoke from a hidden piston whining beneath the exterior plating. It couldn't happen fast enough for her, breath held as the arm came crashing down on the bunker. She only hoped it didn't kill the doctor.
  78. Hop
  79. Shiori's ragged and broken breaths were all she could hear through the bubble, the refracted light distorting the exterior world around her. But she did see the robot's attack. Like looking through the crystalline surface of a still pond, the warped image of the automaton's glow. This would shatter her dome. And if she tried to resist it, the attempt might drain all of the aether she had left. Wicked as she were, she still held respect for the possibilities of power that mankind held. But this... machine... an abomination. An affront to the beauty of the natural form of man. A jolt of an idea flashed through her mind, and she only had seconds to act upon it. As the machine raised its fist high, her arm snapped back, the shield shattered, glass-like aether sprinkling down to the ground. Her palm slapped against the floor, and she uttered, "graviga" The ground beneath her cracked and broke, sinking like quicksand as the floor buckled down into the ground. She felt the weight of the singularity tearing at her, her lungs emptying with the force of space. Her form fell limp against the ground as it gave way, no way to fight the power of her own magicks... but the floor sunk, warped under the g-force she had created. And soon, as her muscles stretched, and limbs bent, fighting the weight as best she could to preserve her own safety, the floor gave way, and she fell, a cavernous maw into the Goblet's sewers yawning wide to accept her, and she landed with a splash into the filth. But now, her aether was spent, and she could hardly move, clutching herself as she felt the weight disappear, trying to crawl her way through the muck and mire towards some semblance of safety.
  82. Bibbit Jinh
  83. The ground bowed unnaturally, and she spat a curse, grinding her teeth in frustration. The punch kept going, ground flaking away beneath the hunk of metal and for a second, Clarice turned that impassive face towards her. If Kiki didn't know better, she'd have said it was almost apologetic. She also hoped that whatever state Clarice would end up in, she'd land on the damned doctor and flatten her. Alas, the pile bunker expended, the battery squealed a warning and the automaton dematerialized. "Puta!" As soon as the damned gravity released, she'd be after her. It held yet, longer perhaps than a person with healthy aether, but she could feel the grip slackening, leg muscles going to jelly from the tension. Her whole torso leaned forward, panting with exertion and breathlessness, lips tinged blue from lack of oxygen. Darkness pressed on the edge of her vision for a second, dizziness crashing down on her. A sensible person would leave the witch to die in the sewers...but she couldn't do that. Couldn't leave a job half finished, the potential for a mistake. The gravity began to relent, and she painstakingly slithered towards the hole, one foot dragging at a time until she was free of its embrace, tumbling carelessly down into the dark.
  86. Hop
  87. She didn't have much time to get out of here. She had to find the exit, fast, find safety, find someone. If there was a witness, maybe that could help her. Not many kill in cold blood, especially not a local surgeon with not a dirty mark upon her record. But crawling for what seemed like eternity net only more and more dark, damp sewer. And she could hear the Viera splash behind her into the muck. The grime of whatever lay in these waters coated her broken form as she hobbled along the way, guiding herself with her one good arm pressed against the wall of the tunnel. There had to be an exit, there had to! And just when she felt her hope draining, she saw it. The faint trickle of light around the corner. She grinned, picking up her pace with all of the energy she had left, wandering towards it, as she felt the warm air against her scale and skin. Freedom at last! ...but she was wrong. The sluice opened into a freefall, tumbling down the cliffside that lead into the bay far below. She couldn't scale it, not like this, not with an enemy wielding a gun. It was the end of the line. She had to fight. Fight, or die. So she slipped into the shadows, disappearing into the darkness, closing her limbal eyes, making herself invisible as she waited, biding her time. A tiger. Fight until you cannot breathe anymore.
  89. August 21, 2019
  91. Bibbit Jinh
  92. She had her on the run now, the thrill of the chase quickening her blood til it sang in her ears. Careful now...a cornered beast is at its most deadly. Doggedly she limped on through the muck, wrinkling her nose at the ungodly stench. It totally killed any chances of using her nose down here, and the way the tunnels threw sounds back made it disconcerting. Were she aware that her own eyes shone faintly in the dark, like the banked embers of a fire, she might have done something to cover them in advance. The darkness didn't bother her as much however, and she pushed on relentlessly, despite the growing ache in her chest, the dizziness that threatened to have her spewing on her knees. No, it was time to end it. If she died here, the woman was smart enough to figure out where she'd made a mistake, and then she'd correct it. Kiki wasn't about to let that happen, and mouth firming she stopped, head canted, listening to the sounds ahead. An open pipe glared as she crept to the corner, ears straining. A dead end...no doubt she'd not be stupid, or brave enough to start clambering down...so...
  95. Hop
  96. Earthly star. At the base of Kiki's legs, a stellar light began to glimmer. And before she could react, it would explode into light, soothing and gentle, as if the heavens twinkled and smiled upon her. She could feel the restorative properties wash over her, a placid look into the beautiful and impossibly deep reaches of the stars. A billion tiny stars twinkled and hung for her, brilliant and bright, the tunnel glowing with the glimpse into the unknown. And with this grandiose healing spell, Shiori had laid her bait. She leapt up from the water, howling maniacally as she surfaced, latching onto Kiki's back as she bore her fangs. Her scalpel, shallow as it was, aimed to wrap around the Viera's waist, primed for her gut. Her teeth sank into the woman's neck, tearing into her flesh as she tasted the sweet, delightful taste of bl-- There was something wrong with this blood. Something twisted. Like a cracked stained glass, or the sweet of decaying lumber. Something was very wrong with her prey, and she tasted sick, sour iron. Her strike faltered, if only for a moment, caught off guard by the ghastly pit that filled her gut. She wondered... was the thing she was fighting even real? It couldn't be. Kiki was an oni, sent to claim her soul, to bring divine retribution as penance for her life's work. Something beyond her scope. If her knife couldn't find purchase in the woman's stomach, tearing her open, intestines falling into the dreadful soup below... she would stand trial for her crimes in the hells beneath.
  99. Bibbit Jinh
  100. As the light bloomed gently around her feet, the viera took a hard step back, face twisting in consternation. More twelvesdamned magic... Beautiful as it was, the light served to throw her darkvision, and distract her for the second it took for the smaller woman to leap upon her back. And so the struggle commenced. Immediately she dropped her gun, one hand gripping the broken arm and squeezing, the other grabbing for the woman's wrist. Furious pain exploded in her gut, and for one breathless moment, it was all she could do to keep a grip on Shiori's wrist, keep it from gutting her like a deer. Her legs trembled, threatened to give out. She knew it was bad without looking., and thought briefly back to the promise she'd made Chi. Maybe she couldn't keep it...but at least she'd make good on what she said she was going to do. The strangled cry as the knife went in turned to a bloodcurdling roar, dragging her head to one side, away from those tearing teeth. She squeezed, harder, harder, feeling the bones of the woman's wrist grinding in her fist. And twisted, shrieking as the blade moved in her, a crackling sound like dry twigs underfoot as she fought to break that grip, break the other arm. Her breath sounded too loud in her ears, a bubbling rasp as she swung from side to side, grunting and growling like an enraged beast as she sought to dislodge the woman, then to drag her over her shoulders and toss her aside like a ragdoll.
  103. Hop
  104. Kiki was lucky she wasn't completely gutted then and there. And it broke Shiori's heart. The healing waves of the astral magic would dull the pain in her arm as the bones were ground to dust, but the pain was enough to have her screaming in agony. And Kiki was stronger. She was bigger. She was better. She had failed to end it, and as she was sent tumbling the blood loss and pain muddying her mind into slops, she realized that this would be where she would die. Her broken form collided with the wall, knocking the air out of her lungs as she collapsed into a pile. Her form lay limp for a few moments, legs sprawled out and lazy, one leaking blood by the second, and her arms were still at her sides, one swollen and mangled from the right. Only the glow of her Auri eyes seeming to retain life, dreadful and sickly as they were transfixed upon Kiki through the shimmering lights that bounced around the tunnel. And in that moment, she saw the awesome, terrible demon. The oni.
  105. She hadn't noticed the blood that had begun to trickle from her nose, nor the aether growing still within her body. All of it was idly spent on keeping the field of lights alive, the soothing, warm embrace that wrapped the pair in healing aura, stitching their wounds slowly, enough to stop the bleeding in her leg. But it soon waned, not nearly enough to repair the flesh, as the blood began to seep out once more.(edited)
  106. She couldn't breathe. She could hardly speak, reaching out towards her enemy, her judgement call, and the tears of bitter defeat trickled from her white eyes. She tried to summon the last of her aether for healing, as the bright magic sparked from her fingertips... but never manifested, fizzling out into nothingness. "I don't want to go. I don't want to go. Please, don't take me, I don't want to go." How beautiful her foe was, in all of her wickedness! How terrifying and inspiring the battered Viera was. Oh, that she could live 1000 lives to be such a masterpiece! Her lips curled into a gentle smile, and she sighed. If she had to die, it would be an art.(edited)
  109. Bibbit Jinh
  110. The lights finally dimmed and went out, leaving them in the dark, two dull eyes glaring back at the other. Kiki pressed a hand to her stomach, feeling the blood oozing freely, the knife still in there. Pulling it out right now might be worse but...leaving it in wasn't much better. She glanced up, breathing hard, watching the crumpled woman, her pitiful whine thrown back at them. She could still hear the screams, both of them, dancing around playfully further down the tunnel. And yet...she shouldn't have felt it, considering the woman had just put a number of new uncomfortable holes in her, but she felt almost sympathetic for her. Two born killers, and perhaps...in another life... "We could...have been beautiful together..." Her hand flew to her neck, probing the burning wound. It was open...she'd actually tried to...was she some kind of vampire? Too late now...the toxin would probably kill her before the blood loss did. Suffocation was an awful way to go, and while she'd done a terrible thing to Noelle...the idea stuck in her craw. Mercy. Kiki's hand settled around gripping the knife, steady now while the adrenaline lasted. Maybe she'd break that promise after all. "My blood...will kill you. Stop your lungs." She winced, feeling the world rock unsteadily as dizziness hit her. "I can make it...quicker. Your choice. But you go..." the tiniest of smiles twitched on her lips, mirthless. "I follow."
  113. Hop
  114. Poison. No wonder she tastes so vile. She must have been some divine beast, no one could survive with such toxicity coursing in their veins. Shiori truly believed, now, that her opponent was sent by the Kami to collect their prize. The venom crept through Shiori, and she coughed, blood sputtering from her lips as the damage had already been done. She could lay here and slowly die for hours, choking on her own lungs as blood would fill them, if she didn't die from the blood loss in her leg first. It would give her time to reflect. Time for her to pray for forgiveness. But Kiki had earned her kill. She motioned her hand quietly, urging Kiki over, sputtering a cough out as she wheezed. Of course the blood of a demon was poison. Of course she couldn't win this. She was a fool to think she could get away with everything. Her past would have found her eventually. The world would have its retribution. "Just... koff... end me, demon. Feast upon... my soul... better purgatory than... eternal damnation."
  117. Bibbit Jinh
  118. Kiki blinked, her face calm, impassive once more, though the corners of her eyes, her mouth, tightened with pain at the movement. She probably shouldn't have offered...the woman was a terrible person. Even the damned deserved some chance though...or so she'd like to think. It was probably why she'd gotten so fucked over. Going soft. The irony wasn't lost on her as she slowly eased the knife out of her flesh, gasping as a fresh wave of agony crawled inside her skin and made itself at home, fresh warmth washing her hand. Kiki lowered the blade, her arm crossing Shiori's chest, upside down to the woman's vision from where she squatted, set it to her fluttering pulse beneath her horn. "We're all damned here." She drew it across, quick and sharp, holding her pale gaze as her flame guttered out.
  120. Hop
  121. "I'll see you... in hells." Shiori grinned as the blade cut through her neck, a mirroring scar to match that of Noelle's. The blood fell like water from her neck, spilling down her chest. She writhed in pain for but an instant, and then she lay still, still carrying her menacing grin as her head hung low. Shiori's form slowly tipped sideways, and then collapsed upon the ground, limp, and lifeless. The tiger lay down, the warmth leaving her body, and then, the light of her eyes faded, growing quiet. The echoes had faded, and naught but the gentle trickle of the murky water sounded through the tunnels. Light from the exit continued to shine around the corner, and further in, light from the clinic was still and bright. A fortuitous situation for the wounded Kiki, if she could climb her way out of this hole, as the operating room was stocked with many a bandage and medicine. But, that was only if she could climb her way out of the filth-ridden cavern beneath the Goblet. Shiori's corpse as unsettlingly complacent for a dead woman. Her grin as wicked as she was, bearing the full malice that she wrought. But she could do no more harm. The once Butcher of the Bazaar, the Bazā no Hitogoroshi... had finally met the hand of justice, thousands of malms from her home. If only she could have seen Lan once more, to tell her, earnestly and in full, that she loved her. If only.
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