Double Cross - Forbidden Fruit - Part 2

Jan 30th, 2015
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  3. LeahofCherem The man flushes a little, "Good luck with him! And tell him to call in sometime! Seriously..."
  4. 17:56 Jamie_Knapp "I'll let him know." She says with a wave as she leaves the store.
  5. 17:56 Pinko Ian slips the bag himself before the scanner, and throws enough coins to pay for the bag, at least. "Keep the change, 'nii-chan."
  6. 17:57 LeahofCherem The man gives him a dirty look when he thinks Ian isn't looking, "Sure man." Woah, where'd that servile attitude go?
  7. 17:57 Pinko Ian would have to make another visit here under different circumstances, he figures.
  8. 18:02 LeahofCherem The apartment complex itself is a little impressive, but nothing out of the ordinary: maybe eight floors high, complete with balconies with plants and laundry hanging from them. Inside the lobby, it's dirty with a half-assed cleaning job and a "wet floor" sign left on a floor that hasn't seen soap or water in a while.
  9. 18:02 LeahofCherem Of course, the elevator has an "out of order" sign on it, and the stairs are concrete and set just high enough to be a pain in the ass to walk up.
  10. 18:03 Pinko "Y'know that if your 'boyfriend' is not here, he most likely is a victim himself now, right?", asks Ian as he looks at the derelict state of the complex.
  11. 18:05 Jamie_Knapp "Yeah. I know. Let's hope for the best, shall we?"
  12. 18:06 Tsuboki_Junko "At least it's only the fourth floor."
  13. 18:08 LeahofCherem The fourth floor doesn't stand out: the doors are uniformly boring, and there's the sounds of life behind some of them, but only when you pass close by. Room 19 itself has the "9" removed, where the wall underneath is a shade lighter than the beige paint around it.
  14. 18:09 LeahofCherem There's a small peephole, and there's not dust on the doorknob, so chances are somebody's been coming in and out of the door. Possibly.
  15. 18:10 Jamie_Knapp shrugs. "You two wait back a bit. I wanna see if I can convince him to talk."
  16. 18:11 Tsuboki_Junko Junko rolls her eyes and moves away from the door, squatting down to eat her tonkatsu while Jamie tries her luck. Could she look any more like a delinquent?
  17. 18:12 Pinko Ian froiwns ever so slightly at Junko before leaning against the wall away from the attorney, sighing softly.
  18. 18:13 Jamie_Knapp Once they're in place Jamie heads over to the door and knocks firmly three times.
  19. 18:15 LeahofCherem There's a soft noise from behind the door, like the sound of someone jumping in surprise. But there isn't much else: it goes quiet quickly.
  20. 18:17 Jamie_Knapp raises an eyebrow. "Ah Mr. Yasura?"
  21. 18:18 LeahofCherem "N-no!" A thin, reedy voice comes through the door. "Nobody's here!" There's a beat moment, and then "shit." Another moment, "Who is it?"
  22. 18:25 Jamie_Knapp "I represent TMI associates and I understand that you've recieved some harrassment by the police recently?"
  23. 18:27 LeahofCherem "Harassment..?" There's a sound, and the voice gets louder. "Uh, yeah, kind of. Why, you can help me get them to leave me alone?" The voice sounds like it's on the other side of the door now.
  24. 18:28 Jamie_Knapp "Of course we can. We might even get you some money in the process."
  25. 18:29 LeahofCherem "A settlement?" The door opens a little, stopped by what looks like three- no, four chains. There's an eye behind a pair of glasses, an unshaven beard, and long, greasy hair. "What'd you say your name was?"
  26. 18:31 Jamie_Knapp "Jamie Knapp. And a settlement is exactly what I'm talking about."
  27. 18:32 LeahofCherem "Alright. Can't leave you out there I guess..." He frowns, "Uh... How do I know you're legit?"
  28. 18:33 LeahofCherem As he talks, a smell comes out of the door, like fast food and bad hygene.
  29. 18:34 Jamie_Knapp Jamie hands him her card, ignoring the smell. "Thank you very much for deciding to talk with me."
  30. 18:36 LeahofCherem He takes the card quickly and looks it over. "Alright. One second." THe door closes quickly, and there's the sound of several locks being opened. THe door opens for a moment, before closing again. "Ah, one sec, I forgot something-" There's the sound of receding footsteps, then they return and the door opens.
  31. 18:38 LeahofCherem A man in his middle twenties, with a thin, ragged "beard" and shoulder-length black hair with thin glasses and a long nose, looks at you. "You know my name already, Mrs.Knapp. Come in, sorry for the.. mess." He notices Ian and Junko, and you can see him twitch to slam the door shut.
  32. 18:38 LeahofCherem For the record, he is wearing a ragged hoodie probably half as old as he is if the date on the chest is any indication, and a pair of dirty, faded jeans.
  33. 18:40 Pinko Ian runs to the door before it can even be shut, and keeps it open with his foot. "If you don't mind..."
  34. 18:41 LeahofCherem "Shit!" Himura stumbles back, before turning and starting to crawl/run into the apartment.
  35. 18:42 Tsuboki_Junko "Huhn." Junko stays where she is, finishing off her meal without much concern.
  36. 18:44 Jamie_Knapp "Well, that was hardly necessary." Jamie says, with a stern look to Ian. "Relax, Mr. Yasurou we're here to help."
  37. 18:44 LeahofCherem "Help? Help?!" He calls out from inside the apartment, and there's a sound you don't hear much in Japan: the sharp click of a round being chambered.
  38. 18:45 Pinko Ian scoffs and shakes his head. "I just saved us half an hour of more of this bullshit.", she says as the... scent of the room overwhelms him. "...Shit.", he says as he handily recognizes the sound.
  39. 18:45 LeahofCherem "Who the fuck are you people!?" You can see the barrel poke around the corner, trembling and aimed at the ground.
  40. 18:46 Jamie_Knapp looks to Ian. "You already know who I am, Mr Yasurou."
  41. 18:46 Tsuboki_Junko Junko's in the doorway now, watching calmly with hands in her pockets. "Sure got him riled up."
  42. 18:47 LeahofCherem "How can I believe that? Are you with that asshole who came last night? First the police, now some thug who thinks I talked to them!"
  43. 18:48 Jamie_Knapp "What thug? You've seen my card, And despite my associate's hasty actions, we are who we say we are."
  44. 18:50 Pinko "Listen, pal, we're not the police, we're not thugs, we are honest people looking after our own - and after you. You're in danger, I'm sure you're aware by now."
  45. 18:50 LeahofCherem "You say that..." The gun dips a little, and you can hear him breathing heavily. "Shit, man, he already came by and threatened to kill me if I said anything, I can't tell you or he'll... shit, this must count." There's a veritable flood of curses as the gun hits the ground, and the sound of Himura sliding down the wall and slumping with a whimper.
  46. 18:52 Jamie_Knapp "Listen, Himura. There is no thug that we can't handle. We can get you somewhere safe and you can tell us everything that's happened. Trust me. If there's someone out there to hurt you, it's not us."
  47. 18:53 LeahofCherem "... Really?" A pathetic sound comes from around the corner, and a long, shaky sigh. "Alright... Alright. Just... Just close the door, I'll talk."
  48. 18:54 Jamie_Knapp nods to Junko. "Tell us everything."
  49. 18:54 LeahofCherem Inside, the apartment is... well, it's a mess. There's a hallway, with a bathroom on one side and a "kitchen" on the other. There's trash along the sides and corners, and laundry hanging from the ceiling. There's a living room, or the equivalent, with a kotatsu and a television with a console attached. The walls have assorted pictures of characters from -
  50. 18:54 Tsuboki_Junko Junko does the honors of closing the door, lighting up a cigarette soon after.
  51. 18:56 LeahofCherem - various live dramas and some anime, all of them women (or questionably aged illustrated girls) and mecha. Himura takes the gun and leans it in the corner of the room, out of sight of the balcony (which has a bedsheet nailed over it), before sitting at the Kotatsu. He doesn't offer you tea.
  52. 18:56 LeahofCherem "Well... Shit, what should I start with? THe thug or what happened a few weeks ago?"
  53. 18:56 Pinko Ian decides Junko has the right idea, with the stench the place has, and lights himself another cigarette. "With the beginning.", answers Ian.
  54. 18:58 LeahofCherem "That'd be a few weeks ago then." Himura sighs, brushing off newspapers and old delivery boxes from the kotatsu, waving at a ratty old couch for them to sit. "I was working night shift at the store like usual, normal night, you know, not too many people, reading my book and kind of just trying to not nod off."
  55. 18:59 LeahofCherem "I got off around, like, three in the morning, handing off my shift to my co-worker, and I was heading home, figured I'd cut through Akai Park, enjoy a smoke, you know?" He says this, looking at Ian and Junko with a sort of "hint hint" look. His hands are still trembling a little and his eyes are red while his breathing is unsteady.
  56. 19:03 LeahofCherem When nothing is offered, he continues, "Ah... Anyways, so, I was walking, and I saw this old lady. And I didn't want to bother her, I mean, it was weird, but old people are weirder. I heard she was the one who went missing from the police. Anyways, she was talking to... somebody. Like a child, you know? Baby voice, asking what a thing like her was doing out."
  57. 19:04 LeahofCherem Shaking his head, he shivers, "And then, the most horrible scream. I saw... Oh, god." Himura shakes his head, "I don't know what I saw."
  58. 19:05 Pinko He looks at his near empty pack, sighing as he looks back up at him. "A smoke would help you remember, maybe?"
  59. 19:07 LeahofCherem "Might.... It just..." Himura shakes his head harder. "It doesn't make sense, you know? It was like I saw something out of a horror flick, like Sadako-chan. I saw the old lady get grabbed around the throat, but, not with hands. Like... snakes. Or something." The way he says it, it's like he doesn't even believe it himself.
  60. 19:09 Jamie_Knapp "It was dark so it might have been hard to see. You said that the lady was talking to a child?"
  61. 19:10 LeahofCherem "Did I say a kid? Yeah, I guess. Little thing, girl I think. I mean, no boy grows their hair out that long, right?" He blinks, "I mean, uh, not when they're that young. Your parents are still cutting your hair when you're that small."
  62. 19:11 Pinko Ian throws him his near empty pack of cigarettes, frowning. "So now what?", he asks Knapp.
  63. 19:12 LeahofCherem Himura flinches, taking the pack and rooting around for a lighter, taking a deep drag of his cigarette when he can.
  64. 19:12 Jamie_Knapp looks back thinking. She returns her gaze to the man. "What about this thug?"
  65. 19:14 LeahofCherem "Him..." He shudders. "So... After I saw that, I kinda just... hung out here. Called in for food, I didn't want to leave the house. It was almost midnight, and I was watching some TV, get my mind off what I saw, and I heard a knock at the window. And, I mean, you know, I'm on the fourth floor, that kind of thing doesn't happen." He looks at the sheet.
  66. 19:15 LeahofCherem "I looked up, and there was this guy there. There wasn't much light, but his eyes..." He shudders, "They had a light in them. Like a cat's eyes, glowing..." He looks between the three of you, "You think I'm making this up? I promise I'm not!"
  67. 19:16 Tsuboki_Junko "We believe you."
  68. 19:17 LeahofCherem Himura looks at her, and shudders. "He tried to make me let him inside. I didn't unlock the door. So..." He stands up, going to the curtain. He pulls it up, and there's a brief flash of sunlight, and a gust of wind. "He punched a hole through the window and let himself in."
  69. 19:18 LeahofCherem "He had a sword. Hit me around a bit. Said he saw me that night." He drops the curtain, hugging himself. "He said he'd kill me if I said anything to the police."
  70. 19:18 LeahofCherem He looks at the corner, at the gun. "So I went and bought that. A friend from a forum helped me get it."
  71. 19:19 Pinko "On the bright side, that's proof he was not a vampire. And, we're not police, so everything might work out for you.", he says with a teasing smile.
  72. 19:22 LeahofCherem "W-what? I guess... But, he might mean if I told anybody." Himura returns to the kotatsu, burying his hands underneath the blanket. "I don't think the shotgun would stop anybody like that now, though. He.. he really meant it. I looked into his eyes, and saw that he did."
  73. 19:22 Jamie_Knapp "Stay here while we talk." Jamie says to Himura. "We'll have to decide what to do with this information. But don't worry. We'll get you somewhere safe."
  74. 19:23 Pinko "And, hey, if you're not feeling safe with that shotgun, I might just borrow it from you, if y'don't mind.", says Ian with a smirk.
  75. 19:24 LeahofCherem "Well... I can't just let anybody borrow it. It's not, exactly, you know..." He nods, "Alright. I'll wait here."
  76. 19:27 Pinko "Fssh, fiine.", says Ian, shaking his head, nudging Knapp slightly.
  77. 19:29 Jamie_Knapp Jamie stepped outside and waited for the other two a little ways down the hallway. "Looks like we've got two, maybe more. I'm thinking a bait-switch."
  78. 19:31 Tsuboki_Junko "Hnn?"
  79. 19:31 Pinko Ian follows her outside. "Or, at the very least, there's some kind of organisation going on."
  80. 19:33 Jamie_Knapp "You've got government connections, Junko. Can you get them to hold our witness for awhile while I leak news that he's talked to the police? Once they think he's a rat, they'll come for him, and we'll be waiting."
  81. 19:35 Tsuboki_Junko Junko sighs, blowing smoke. "I guess I can try."
  82. 19:37 Pinko "Worst case scenario, I've probably got a boy or two that can help..", says Ian while clearing his throat.
  83. 19:38 LeahofCherem ===
  84. 19:39 LeahofCherem "That's... well, we certainly can do that." Hanase frowns a little, rubbing his chin. "Just act like we're taking him into custody, right?" The Hound gives Junko a look like he's surprised. "Did he give you any leads into who this "thug" was?"
  85. 19:41 Tsuboki_Junko "Sounds like an Overed, thats about it." She scratched at the top of her head looking aggrivated. "Still, feels like something we gotta take care of. He's involved in his own way now. Protecting Humanity and all."
  86. 19:42 Pinko "Shit, can we even fight in that tiny apartment of his if we have to? There's junk everywhere.", Ian says with a sigh.
  87. 19:43 Jamie_Knapp "We don't have to fight, hopefully. Not if we set a good enough trap."
  88. 19:43 LeahofCherem Hanase grunts, "He is involved now. We have the manpower to at least assign one guard to him while we work this out. You say a trap though: you think this mystery man will attack him at his apartment again?"
  89. 19:45 Tsuboki_Junko "He knows to find him there, if nothing else."
  90. 19:46 LeahofCherem Hanase nods. "Alright. Whoever he is, he's probably watching this Himura anyways. Where is he now, by the way?"
  91. 19:47 Tsuboki_Junko She thumbs to the greasy-looking dude nearby.
  92. 19:47 Pinko "Alone by himself in his apartment, if not kidnapped or dead. I mean, this is not my plan.", he tells the stranger with a chuckle.
  93. 19:47 Pinko Oh
  94. 19:48 LeahofCherem Himura looks up from the corner, where he's been playing on a portable console. He doesn't have that much of a presence, that's for sure.
  95. 19:49 Pinko "He's not impressive, but it's the most solid link you guys have found.", says Ian with a shrug. "I just want that park to be safe again."
  96. 19:50 Tsuboki_Junko "Taking care of this might take care of that."
  97. 19:50 LeahofCherem "So how is he related to the park thing again? He's supposed to be a witness, but he's being intimidated by somebody else?" Hanase frowns.
  98. 19:51 Tsuboki_Junko "Or someone related to it. Dunno yet. Gonna take some aggressive questioning.:
  99. 19:51 Tsuboki_Junko "
  100. 19:52 Jamie_Knapp "Looks like the murderer was an overed kid. This thug found out and threatened to kill him if he spoke. You ask me, anyone who goes out of their way to protect a murderer is in on it."
  101. 19:53 LeahofCherem "Maybe..." Hanase scowls at Himura, who looks up at just the wrong time and pales, turning back to his game. "If you get this other person, you might find out who the murderer is."
  102. 19:55 Tsuboki_Junko "Guess we'll find out."
  103. 19:55 Pinko "That's the plan so far I assume.", says Ian with a shrug, half wodnering where he's been dragged to, and half annoyed by the situation he's now stuck in.
  104. 19:56 LeahofCherem ===
  105. 20:09 LeahofCherem Two nights into the stakeout, it finally happens. It's a night like any other: there's the sound of a couple fighting in the next apartment, somebody in another room is playing music too loud, and the console is humming in the background as Ian and Junko wait in the apartment. Nearby, the van is parked with a clear view of the balcony.
  106. 20:10 Pinko "Should I erase a save slot to start a new game?", Ian asks Junko with a raised eyebrow as they keep waiting.
  107. 20:12 Tsuboki_Junko "Like this slob doesn't have enough problems already." Junko says from her hiding spot, stuffing shrimp chips into her mouth.
  108. 20:13 Pinko "Fine, I won't save.", he says as he starts a new game. He's uncomfortable as he feels like there's a layer of flith between him and the chair he's sitting on.
  109. 20:17 LeahofCherem Outside, there's not much going on. It's dark, late, and Jaime's probably tired, but she sees the figure creeping along the balcony. It looks like they came out of the room next to Himura's, 18 or 20. From this distance she can't make anything out, just htat somebody is about to make a terrible decision.
  110. 20:18 Jamie_Knapp "Looks like you got company. Be ready." Jamie's voice is low but clear over the radio.
  111. 20:19 Pinko "This controller is 12 kinds of sticky. I don't know if I want to keep holding it.", he says before being interrupted by Jaime in his thoughts.
  112. 20:20 LeahofCherem "You've made a terrible..." A voice sounds from behind the curtain, before pausing. "... Tch."
  113. 20:23 Pinko Ian stops making sounds, except from the regular ones that should come from the console. He slouches into his seat, the darkness being most of his disguise.
  114. 20:24 LeahofCherem "You're not the NEET, are you?" The part of the sheet covering the hole bunches up, before it gets torn down and out, revealing a figure dressed in black with a longcoat. The sheet comes to rest at a pair of feet in boots, as a tall, muscular man glares through the window.
  115. 20:25 LeahofCherem He's not even wearing anything to cover his face: he's got a long, severe face marked with scars. His hands are covered in gloves, and there's what looks like a wide-brimmed cowboy hat on his head. Eugh.
  116. 20:26 LeahofCherem "A shame. Who are you then?" His voice is low and stoney as he reaches through the hole to unlock the sliding door.
  117. 20:27 Pinko Ian throws the controller aside, and through formidable Hanuman speed, picks up the loaded shotgun. "Yeah, what of him?"
  118. 20:29 LeahofCherem The door slides open slowly. "I figured he'd talk to somebody. I didn't want to kill him, but I can't let her get hurt." His brow narrows. "But I ask again, who are you."
  119. 20:31 Pinko "Someone who'd rather not have someone hurt, too.", he says, still holding the gun up. "Cut the crap, the guy's in safe hands now, and it's just you and me here. The fuck you want."
  120. 20:34 LeahofCherem "I want his silence. But I guess yours will have to do." He shrugs off the jacket to reveal a tight black tank-top underneath, where the scars along his arms abruptly stop at his elbows. Then, a sickly smell floods the room, like the smell of rotting vegetation and thick iron. Warding.
  121. 20:39 Pinko In the flash of a moment, Ian has moved, an afterimage of himself left behind, his shotgun now pressed into the exposed chest of the intruder. "Surprise, bitch.", he says with a wicked smirk he blasts straight through him. Vital Precision.
  122. 20:39 Tsuboki_Junko The warding was all Junko needed, popping up out of her hiding place and rushing in to engage with the Overed perp.
  123. 20:48 Pinko The blast goes straight through the chest of the intruder, also revealing to Knapp that shit is going down.
  124. 20:52 Jamie_Knapp "Shit guys! Remember, we want him captured, not dead!"
  125. 20:52 Tsuboki_Junko The change is nearly instant and mostly internal save for the girl's ghastly right arm. Sharp claws line blades strike out at their prey hoping to cut deep. "Eat it!"
  126. 20:53 LeahofCherem The blast tears through the man's chest, and he grunts in pain, trying to turn him flying back into dodging Junko, but it's not happening: the cut cuts through him like butter.
  127. 20:56 LeahofCherem Wincing, he lets out a low breath. "Goddamnit. Overeds." At that, you see his arms both squirm, before two long, sharp blades of sickly white and green bone plunge out of them like punching daggers, long and slick with his own gore. A thin line of blood runs down his chin, before he attacks Junko!
  128. 20:59 LeahofCherem The blades sprout to great size to strike both Junko and Ian, but they're moving way too slow to hit.
  129. 21:06 Tsuboki_Junko Junko dodges easily enough, grinning as she turns and uses her unnatural muscles to drive those knives she calls fingers into the intruder again.
  130. 21:07 LeahofCherem Plunging into the man's chest, he can't even react. He slumps over, down almost as soon as he showed up, coughing blood. "Shit..."
  131. 21:07 Tsuboki_Junko "Gonna behave now? Don't wanna kill ya."
  132. 21:08 Pinko Ian cranks his shotgun, about to take a second shot, but is almost creeped out by the strength the Overed just showed. "Erm, nice job.", he says before offering her a high a five.
  133. 21:08 Tsuboki_Junko She looks at him with a raised eyebrow and a reluctant return of the elevated hand slap.
  134. 21:09 LeahofCherem He doesn't say anything, slumping back. "After that? I wish you'd kill me."
  135. 21:09 Jamie_Knapp "Status report!"
  136. 21:10 Pinko "Alright, Knapp, he's hurt, but we've got him. Van's ready?", he says as he slings the man over his shoulder. "Race you to the van, hun.", he tells Tsuboki before running off.
  137. 21:10 Tsuboki_Junko "Don't call me that!"
  138. 21:10 Jamie_Knapp "Van's ready." Jamie says, getting out and opening the back doors.
  139. 21:12 LeahofCherem The man doesn't put up a fight, he lets himself get dragged along. So much for that.
  140. 21:16 LeahofCherem The drive isn't terribly eventful: you're greeted by Hanase when you arrive at the University. "Well, I presume it went well? We've got guards prepared, just in case."
  141. 21:17 LeahofCherem Edgelord doesn't say anything, preferring to brood. You can see his wounds actually knitting up, but he's making no effort to flee. Maybe his spirit's been broken.
  142. 21:17 Jamie_Knapp "Well enough. I doubt he'll try too hard to get away."
  143. 21:18 Pinko "It was good teamwork.", says Ian with a nod, still splatered with the goon's guts and blood.
  144. 21:19 LeahofCherem "Good work then." Hanase waves you by. "There'll be a secure cell for him. Any name?"
  145. 21:21 Jamie_Knapp "That'll have to be one of the questions we ask him."
  146. 21:21 Pinko "He was immediatly hostile when he introduced himself, it was him or us, unfortunately.", idly reports Ian, searching his pocket for a cigarette, forgetting he gave them to the Hikki.
  147. 21:21 Tsuboki_Junko "No name, but he mentioned someone else. Female. Maybe whoever's in the park."
  148. 21:22 Pinko "Said he doesn't want to see her hurt, so he'd have to shut our guy up. Said I'd do the trick for tonight."
  149. 21:22 LeahofCherem "Sounds like a good lead. Get him to talk and we can get this whole mess wrapped up." Hanase shivers.
  150. 21:24 LeahofCherem There are several guards who escort you to a cell for the man: a room in the basement, prepared to hold an Overed. The thug doesn't say anything as you walk him by other cells, and allows himself to be put into the room without much complaint.
  151. 21:24 LeahofCherem "So... Now you'll ask me questions." He doesn't look up, preferring to look at his own feet.
  152. 21:25 *** Mr_Rage quit (Quit: laffo!)
  153. 21:26 Pinko "You asked my name earlier.", says Ian as he watches the gate get shut. "My name's Ian."
  154. 21:26 Jamie_Knapp "Well, there are two things that can happen." Jamie says, nodding to the others. "You answer our questions, we find your girl, and you can both be held somewhere safe. Or we have to find her without your help. And she might get hurt in the process."
  155. 21:28 LeahofCherem The cell itself looks like it's made of clear glass, but in actuality it's some kind of incredibly resiliant plastic, thick but easy to see through. Inside, there's some room for him to pace, a simple bed with a single pillow, and a chair. The door to the cell is made of the same material, but a metal microphone -
  156. 21:28 LeahofCherem on the inside is what allows him to speak to you through a speaker on your end.
  157. 21:29 LeahofCherem He looks up as Ian introduces himself, before looking down again, turning and pacing a little. "I can't. That would mean betraying her."
  158. 21:30 LeahofCherem Without his hat, you can see his hair is black and cut close to his head, with several streaks of gray and white. Under the flourescent lighting, you can see his face rugged and worn, tanned from years in the sun.
  159. 21:31 Jamie_Knapp "It's not a betrayal. You're saving her from harm."
  160. 21:32 Pinko "The story is out. People are going to recognize her. Organisations are going to hunt her down.", points out Ian.
  161. 21:33 LeahofCherem "It's a betrayal of her ideals." He stops, fists clenching. "She'll fight... She's..." he pauses, clearly torn. "Damnit..."
  162. 21:33 Jamie_Knapp "She's what?"
  163. 21:34 LeahofCherem "Nothing." He stands up straight, "I promised I'd protect her. But I can't do that from here. I have failed her." He walks up to the door. "She doesn't... She's A Renegade Being. A child."
  164. 21:37 Tsuboki_Junko "We, the UGN, will help her. What do you think happens when the False Hearts find out about her?"
  165. 21:37 LeahofCherem "What do you mean, find out about her?" He gives Junko a weird look.
  166. 21:37 Jamie_Knapp "It won't be pretty."
  167. 21:38 Tsuboki_Junko "We found out, how long until word reaches their ears?"
  168. 21:39 LeahofCherem "... I suppose you're right." He crosses his arms. "I'd hate for Viktor to have his hands on her. After all the time I spent..."
  169. 21:40 Tsuboki_Junko "What's her name? Or yours for that matter
  170. 21:40 Tsuboki_Junko ?"
  171. 21:42 LeahofCherem "When I fought in the gulf, they called me Black Reaper for my arms. I kept the name, but not the skill, apparantly."
  172. 21:42 LeahofCherem "Hers... I called her Hanami." The frown on his face falls for a moment, and he looks more like a concerned father than a would-be murderer.
  173. 21:43 Tsuboki_Junko "Where can we find her in the park
  174. 21:43 Tsuboki_Junko ?"
  175. 21:44 LeahofCherem A pained look crosses his face, but Black Reaper sighs, "There is an old cherry tree there, far older than myself, than the park, even. Whenever I called for her there, she came. She doesn't leave the park unless forced to."
  176. 21:45 Tsuboki_Junko grunts and folds her arms, leaning back.
  177. 21:45 Jamie_Knapp "Any idea why she does these things to people?"
  178. 21:45 Pinko "And why you vowed to protect her as she did?"
  179. 21:46 LeahofCherem "She doesn't know how to bond. She's a child, and not human at that." He struggles to describe it. "It is her way of connecting."
  180. 21:47 LeahofCherem At Ian's question he goes quiet, "She's.... Like a daughter. I came back and I had nothing." He leans against the wall. "I lost my house, nobody wanted a veteran. I gave everything I had for You, and then I got tossed out on the street like trash." He grits his teeth, "I found a new purpose."
  181. 21:48 Tsuboki_Junko Junko huffs, gathering her hair behind her ears. "Protecting a child, it's a worthy cause. If you join the UGN you can still be with her and protect others too."
  182. 21:51 LeahofCherem "That lie works exactly one time." He kicks off the wall. "You think I'm not familiar with the Universal Guardian Network?" Black Reaper sneers, "Go ask your taskmaster about me. Hell, ask him about Caudwell too, maybe that'll ring some bells in his thick head."
  183. 21:52 Tsuboki_Junko "Maybe after we've saved your kid."
  184. 21:53 Pinko "It's still late night, if we go now, we might catch her. Hey, Black Reaper, what does she call you?"
  185. 21:54 LeahofCherem The sneer drops from his face, and he turns away again. "It doesn't matter what she calls me. After this, it won't matter anymore." With that, he walks to the far end of the cell, against the wall, and slumps in the corner.
  186. 22:00 *** Tsuboki_Junko quit (Quit: IceChat - Keeping PC's cool since 2000)
  187. 22:06 *** Tsuboki_Junko joined #DXthegame
  188. 22:23 LeahofCherem ===
  189. 22:24 LeahofCherem The trip to Akai Park is yet again uneventful. It is the dead of night, where the streetlights bath the world in yellow and the moon shines somewhere up ahead. The air is cold, but entering the park, there is a warm, wet feeling, like walking into a slaughterhouse on a midsummer's day.
  190. 22:24 LeahofCherem The air is thick with the smell of rot, as Akai Park seems to be wreathed in a thick, heavy mist.
  191. 22:25 Tsuboki_Junko "Yeah, this ain't ominous or nothin'."
  192. 22:25 Pinko "Surprised officers aren't watching over this place. I don't feel a warding, either."
  193. 22:26 Jamie_Knapp looks around warily. "We had to go at night. Just had to make it a horror film."
  194. 22:27 Tsuboki_Junko "Just keep yer eyes peeled for an old cherry tree."
  195. 22:28 Pinko Ian starts humming 'Sakura, Sakura' under his breath. Not racist at all. "And, I suggest not splitting up."
  196. 22:28 Jamie_Knapp "Good idea Freddy."
  197. 22:28 LeahofCherem The atmosphere is thick with tension as you follow the path. Winding through the forest, park, it's not too long before you arrive in front of it. An old, gnarled cherry tree, branches devoid of flowers and leaves. Instead, a single, ruby-red fruit hangs from the center branch, and two figures stand alongside the tree.
  198. 22:29 Pinko "...How do we go about this?". asks Ian as he clutches a throwing knife in his palm.
  199. 22:30 Tsuboki_Junko "Found a lot more than just Hanami I guess."
  200. 22:30 LeahofCherem As you approach, the two figures look up: one you recognize.
  201. 22:30 LeahofCherem The old woman's corpse turns, mushrooms sprouting from her mouth lighting up with a sickly green flourescent light.
  202. 22:31 Tsuboki_Junko "...wasn't ready for that."
  203. 22:32 Jamie_Knapp "Zombies? Really?" Jamie draws her gun.
  204. 22:32 LeahofCherem The other, what was probably a man's corpse, with long, gnatty hair and sickly brown/yellow skin, mirrors the other's movements. From his mouth, what looks like slime drips out in long, ropey strands, mushrooms pushing out of his body like sick pimples.
  205. 22:32 Pinko "Hanami?", calls out Ian, still clutching the knife behind his back.
  206. 22:33 LeahofCherem Two two creatures stop, and the fruit trembles. A warm wind blows through the clearing, in a moment, she's there. Flowers that should not be scattering in the wind obscure her for a moment, but there she is.
  207. 22:34 Pinko Ian seems reassured almost at the supernatural sight before them. "Hanami, we're not here to hurt you or your friends..
  208. 22:34 Pinko By 'friends', he means the two odd plant-like zombies.
  209. 22:35 LeahofCherem She's small, a child, dressed in a white and green dress of leaves and vines. Her skin is the color of sand, dotted with moss and lichen like little freckles. Her eyes two almonds staring at you, her mouth a blossoming red flower.
  210. 22:36 LeahofCherem "Hurt?" Her voice is soft, with the sound of birds chirping and the wind blowing through the trees.
  211. 22:37 Pinko "...Do you know what 'hurt' is?", asks Ian as he takes a careful step closer.
  212. 22:37 LeahofCherem "You... Where Kurohana?" She looks between you, a worried look crossing her face.
  213. 22:38 Jamie_Knapp "He's safe. He's with our friends. We're here to help you make friends with them too."
  214. 22:38 LeahofCherem The woman's corpse steps forward, between the two of you, as her arm sprouts a long, gnarled club.
  215. 22:38 LeahofCherem "... Friend. No. No need." The creature's mouth smiles a little. "New friend."
  216. 22:44 Pinko "I don't know what these things you've made are, but they certainly are not friends.", says Ian as he throws a knife towards the zombified woman, deciding to settle things as fast as possible while they still have an advantage.
  217. 22:45 Pinko The underhanded throw breaks the speed of sound, a deafening boom, not unlike a bullet, being heard.
  218. 22:51 LeahofCherem The blade sinks deep into the woman's throat, and it lets out a gurgling noise, almost bowled over by the strike!
  219. 22:51 Pinko Ian is then gonna jump back 10 meters, puting some slight distance between him and the melee.
  220. 22:55 LeahofCherem Hanami watches her guardian almost collapse, before shaking her head and kneeling. Her hands tie together, and a moment later, a barb stabs from the ground, through the woman. It firmly roots into the base of her skull, and the creature lets out a howl through the mushrooms in it's mouth.
  221. 22:56 Pinko "Fuck, can't say I didn't try..."
  222. 23:01 Jamie_Knapp concentrates, lifting her pistol and doing some intense calculations. She fires directly towards the woman's head.
  223. 23:02 LeahofCherem Hanami's eyes open, and she falls back, raising her arm to protect herself. The bullet is about to strike her, but a vine snaps and takes the hit for her, directing it to just miss her.
  224. 23:04 LeahofCherem The man lets out a low groan, arm snapping to the side and brutally stretching into a bow of wood and flax. It takes careful aim and fires at Jaime!
  225. 23:05 LeahofCherem As it happens, the thing's both ripples and grows a thick layer of wood like armor.
  226. 23:08 LeahofCherem The arrow, writhing with maggots, goes flying at Jaime, missing her by at least a meter.
  227. 23:13 Tsuboki_Junko Junko lets her virus loose, arm transforming and lashing out. Her arm stretched unnaturally to cover the distance between her and the fungas man, knife-like claws piercing him.
  228. 23:14 LeahofCherem The archer lets out a groan, collapsing to the ground, gasping for air (you think)
  229. 23:14 LeahofCherem In response, the woman jumps at Junko!
  230. 23:15 LeahofCherem Her body ripples and expands as her body is covered in shining, thick wood, and a howl escapes her rotton lips!
  231. 23:19 LeahofCherem The cudgel swings down on Junko, and a sickening cracking sound fills the clearing.
  232. 23:22 Pinko "...Shit.", says Ian as he steps closer 10 meters, chucking another knife at the woman. Another sonic boom is heard.
  233. 23:26 Pinko The second knife plants itself into the forehead of the woman with a sickening effect, as if this were some kinda of bad Japanese Z movie. Still, the full effect is more than enough to incapacitate the monster. "Harumi, we're not here to hurt you.", he inists.
  234. 23:27 LeahofCherem Shaking her head, the little girl smiles, "Not matter. Need new guards. Stronger. You, strong." She closes her eyes and bows her head, and a bard implants itself in the archer.
  235. 23:27 LeahofCherem barb*
  236. 23:28 LeahofCherem The archer lifts itself slowly, eyes flaring up.
  237. 23:28 Jamie_Knapp "Fuck me."
  238. 23:30 Jamie_Knapp Jamie recognizes the girl's plan and caps the other corpse while it is still down.
  239. 23:31 LeahofCherem The head pops like a sick pimple, spreading spores and ichor in a wide circle.
  240. 23:35 LeahofCherem The man returns fire at Jaime, howling with anger!
  241. 23:35 LeahofCherem roll 12d10
  242. 23:40 Tsuboki_Junko Junko manages to get back on her feet now, that blow from the club leaving her bloodied. Her Renegade is all but screaming now, the girl close to full infection.
  243. 23:46 Tsuboki_Junko Look at the way she seethes, breath escaping in hot blasts. In a flash her arm snaps out to reach the fungus man for a second time. Her ropey limb, abnormaly stretched, is covered in more blade-like teeth now.
  244. 23:46 LeahofCherem The man lets out a moan as it tries to jump out of the way, but the arm punches through him easily.
  245. 23:48 Pinko Ian sees an opportunity, and throws a knife straight into the creature's throat, the force behind the small sonic boom being enough to severe the head. Ian then jumps and powerslides along the ground to embrace Hamuri. "Don't.", he tells the little creature. Knowing it might just kill him.
  246. 23:50 LeahofCherem Hanami stops, looking at her fallen guardians. The little girl stands slowly, before curtseying slowly. "Done playing. No more friend. It okay. Take with." She sounds a little sad, but after this fight...
  247. 23:58 LeahofCherem "Ah. One more." She stops and returns to the tree, reaching for the ruby-red fruit.
  248. 23:59 LeahofCherem She squirms a little, "Fruit. Get before go..."
  249. 23:59 *** Tsuboki_Junko quit (Quit: Few women admit their age. Few men act theirs.)
  250. 23:59 Jamie_Knapp holds her side, blood seeping from her wounds. "Right...Let's get back soon though...Okay?"
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