Meet Bob


Hannah invites Madoka and Homura to her lab, so that Madoka can meet 'Bob'.

Date: 2016-02-21
Pose Count: 17
Hannah Sharpe 2016-02-21 02:04:25 30239
Miss White is nothing if not good to her word. The young woman is waiting on her pair of guests today. WPS tower is just as large and intimidating as many of the skyscrapers belonging to Eclipse, casting its shadow as the sun fades. For now, the CEO hangs around the front desk in the lobby, a large, mostly open space with comfy chairs, a security guard, and a receptionist hard at work. Miss White has along brought along another of her employees! One can't be too careful after all, Madoka might object, however small the chance of that is.

For now, a coffee in her hand, the smiling face of Miss White leans against the receptionist's desk, whistling as she waits.
Madoka Akemi 2016-02-21 02:21:04 30242
    Madoka had some serious reservations about going to WPS, which is why she'd waited so long before trying to set up a meeting with Hannah to do so. Whatever had gone on in this place was sketchy enough that it had given Homura serious doubts and worries even before she had decided she wanted to be her own boss. A few things Madoka knew for sure is that something awful had happened to Kyouko here, though every party involved seemed to regret that, but also that some kind of Witch related research was being done here that had eventually resulted in the Super Grief Seeds that Miss White and Kyouko had both used on a few occasions.

    The possible meanings behind that frighened her and she was worried she'd be sickened by what she found at the company. Even so Miss White was far from a complete monster and probably didn't know it was the remnants of girl's souls she was messing with- well, that or the remnants of Familiars that had hatched into Witches, which for now Madoka had no reason to believe were anything other than the pure monsters she had originally thought Witches to be. She also remembers the time Hannah made her promise not to tell people she wasn't a horrible person so she could properly play the role of a villain, juxtaposed with how heroically she had acted while fighting Walpurgisnacht. All of this results in a very confused pinkball.

    Madoka isn't dressed up for the meeting as she enters the large WPS tower into the main lobby. Instead she's wearing her usual Infinity University Middle School uniform. She'd come with Homura, having asked her best friend and girlfriend to come with her, both wanting a bit of emotional support as well as her knowledge of the company. She'd held her hand on the walk over, though lets go before actually entering the building. She gives Miss White a small smile and a friendly wave despite her worries, "Hi, Miss White! Um... well, I guess I'm here." She shifts a bit on her feet, looking a bit nervous. "I think you wanted me to see your lab? And..." trepidation, "meet 'Bob.'" She firms up a little and gives a nod, "If there's something I need to see or do, I'm here now. And if you like we can talk about where things are going to go from here on."
Homura Akemi 2016-02-21 02:35:00 30246
    Homura, dutifully, did come here with Madoka. Unlike the last time she was here however, she isn't dressed up in a suit, instead coming here in an Infinity Middle School uniform along with Madoka. She wasn't really sure why Hannah invited her, or why Madoka wanted to come, or even necessarily who 'Bob' was. She had sort of stopped paying attention much to WPS when Walpurgisnacht became a bigger and bigger deal.

    Still, Madoka wanted to come, and Homura was asked to come with her. So here she is, back in her old workplace, though everything feels a little strange to her now. It's not that the building is different, it's just that she never expected to see the inside of this building again.

    Homura did still feel guilty about never telling Hannah what exactly she was experimenting on. There are things she could say as excuses. 'It's not like they'd feel it anyways'. 'It's not like I really could've told you that'. 'You were going to experiment on them anyways.' On the other hand Hannah might remember it wasn't quite like that. Homura almost gleefully went along with it, at least where Witches were concerned, and she never said a thing.

    In fact she didn't even start to get really pissed off until she started thinking that Kyouko had turned into a Witch. Which turned out to not be true, but it forced her to see the reality of what she was doing anyways.

    Homura holds onto Madoka's hand, squeezing it as the two of them find and walk up to Hannah. "White-san," she says simply. She isn't sure yet how this meeting will go.
Mikoto Nakajima 2016-02-21 02:40:10 30249
The elevator goes 'ding'. The doors slide open. And there's Miss Blue. She's been consulting with some of the labs at WPS to get some data for her own project. Intelligent Devices are incredibly complicated things, and trying to actually work on the technology is ... intimidating.

Which brings her out of the lab and down to the lobby, looking for Miss White to sign off on letting her access a particular project that, apparently, needs her signature to release.

She's got a clipboard in one hand, and a pen in the other, and she's mostly focussing on the former at the moment. There's no sign of the sword-like Device she commonly wears, apparently it's tucked away for the moment in its Storage mode. She's playing friendly today, it would seem.

She looks up to survey the lobby, having been told to expect White to be there. Seeing her, she starts over. "Ah, Miss White, glad I could catch you, I need - oh. Pardon the interruption, Akemi-san, Kaname-san."
Hannah Sharpe 2016-02-21 02:49:32 30254
"Heeeey, Blue! Come on, walk with us. We've got guests! Showing pinkball here the lab! What do you need, anyway?" A cheeky smile. Hannah doesn't need to 'play', after all.

Hannah's definitely not put out by Madoka's school uniform, greeting the pair with her usual mile-wide smile and look of mirth on her face.

"And our guests of honor arrive!" Comes Hannah welcomingly. The receptionist rolls her eyes at her exhuberant boss. She reaches over, and slaps the woman on the back.

"Move up my six o'clock, Cindy, we'll be busy. And order some flowers for Toki, tell the little scamp to get better, okay? You're a /doll/!"

Then, Hannah's right over, offering a semi-professional handshake to the pair, before all but dragging the two towards an elevator. As soon as it's closed?

Hannah menaces with headruffles for both.

"Hey, don't be so nervous pinkball. Nothing here is going to ki...let me rephrase that. I won't /let/ anything kill you."

A brow rises. "I appreciate it, but don't be so formal now. You don't owe me anything, least of all '-san' Homura. Ugh, makes me feel old anyway." She hits a button, and up the elevator goes. Five seconds later? Ding. A minute or two of walking, and they reach...a janitor's closet!?

"And we've arrived!" Pause. She opens the closet, and throws an arm around Madoka. "No backing out now kiddo." Wink. Then she shoves her into the closet, and follows behind. There's the odd, almost spinning sensation of dimensions being breached and stacked spaces shoving a person out into another place. It might be a little disorientating.

When reality reasserts itself, they're in a large lab building. Sevearl doors lead elsewhere in this part of the facility, but they've been teleported into the real lab area. Computers, magical and mundane, line the mostly metal and unadorned walls. Work tables with notes, various science equipment, an old coffee cup or two, and several brail readers and outputs take up the majority of the space. There's also a large white erase board with diagrams pinned to it. A smart observer might recognize it as a vague outline of Hannah. Several braille notes are pinned alongside it, and Hannah's linker core circled several times on the diagram. A beaker is nearby, filled with an emerald green liquid that might just /feel/ oddly Hannah-like in her magic.

It's dimly lit, giving it an eerie feel that it truly doesn't need. Almost as soon as one steps in, the oppressive feeling of a nearby Witch can be felt, despite the barriers and other defenses. A massive bulletproof viewing window can be soon into the containment chamber, several glowing green runes, various twisted pipes and spigots aimed directly at the center of the room make up the viewing area. Not seconds later, there's a howl as a Familiar leaks out of the labyrinth and into full view. Almost instantly, wind-chains wrap about the creature, and pull it into a chute elsewhere in the facility. Automated familiar capturing spells, it seems. Hannah's not skimped here.

"Oh, hey, another one popped. Good timing. I needed one more Familiar for the energy-conversion experiment."

Point. "You wanted to meet Bob, right? Well, that's where he...or, I guess, 'she', lives. Convenient source of Familiars, no risk to non-magical people." Grin.
Madoka Akemi 2016-02-21 03:11:32 30264
    "Oh. Hello, Blue-san," Madoka replies to Miss Blue as she arrives with a clipboard and is summarily dragged along for the ride by Hannah. Speaking of dragged along Madoka squeaks in surprise as the handshake is turned into a dragging, heading into the elevator and then closing her eyes in a half wince as her hair is ruffled. It's not too bad, she tells herself, this is one benefit of having her hair in pigtails; the hair at the top of her hair isn't especially easy to muss and her pigtails are fluffy enough that a bit of ruffling only adds to the effect.

    She reaches over and takes Homura's hand again when they get in the elevator, having noticed that the dark haired Puella is a little off-kilter. She follows Miss White along when they get to wherever the elevator is taking them, only to look a little confusedly at the Janitors closet. Another squeak of surprise comes from her in the form of an, "Ah!" as she's suddenly given a shove.

    She goes through stacked space, the dimensional change perhaps not being too terribly disorienting considering how many Labyrinths she's been inside. She does, however, trip and fall almost flat on her face, catching herself with her hands as she flops over. Being off balance AND adding disorientation- that is enough to overcome her poor balance when not in henshin.

    The twintailed girl picks herself up embarrassedly and starts looking around a little. Everything looks vaguely science and dark to the girl, who really has never liked science very much to begin with. The two obvious draws to her are the beaker full of green liquid. Then there is, of course, the Witch. 'Bob' is her name, it seems. This... well, this is pretty much exactly the sort of thing Madoka was expecting to find.

    "Oh my gosh... you actually found a way to capture one and keep it contained?" She walks over to the viewing area, blinking as the Familiar escapes, gets bound, and then is whisked away like an egg on a chute in a laying barn. She shifts about uncomfortably on her feet, not really knowing what to think of this. "I really hope that one started as a Familiar..."
Homura Akemi 2016-02-21 03:21:20 30269
    Homura sees Blue come in. "Hello, Blue-san." Homura doesn't really know what she's doing, but it looks like research.

    She notices that Hannah's being friendly as usual, and doesn't even react as Hannah ruffles her hair. She's used to that by now. She does notice Hannah's objection to the honorific, though. "Old?" She looks questioningly at... well, Madoka, since she's the one Homura's here with, but then she shrugs. Must be another American thing. "Fair enough."

    When Homura reaches the janitor's closet, she isn't really confused by that. She's worked here long enough for that part not to shock her at all. She walks in after Hannah and Madoka, accepting Madoka's held hand, just taking the dimensional shenanigans in stride.

    Madoka, on the other hand, has some trouble and Homura reaches down to help her back up, brushing her off. "Are you alright?"

    Homura walks through the lab, noticing the Hannah diagrams, feeling the Hannah-like magic from one beaker, and seeing other signs that Hannah may or may not be experimenting on herself. Probably 'may'. Or 'is'.

    "You've done a lot since the last time I was here," comments Homura. She's pretty undisturbed by this part, and in fact is undisturbed by most of what she sees here. She did work here for months, after all. "Capturing Familiars and using them as an energy source. Actually that makes sense, considering what Kyubey does."

    She glances over to Hannah, asking, "Does it really just keep producing Familiars like that? It seems like a very strange place to find clean energy." She winces at Madoka's concerns, but she doesn't much know what to say about it. "Containing Witches was one of the first things we did when this company was starting. It was important to do it in a way that would prevent non-magical people getting kissed by the Witches."
Mikoto Nakajima 2016-02-21 03:26:56 30272
Miss Blue nods, holding out the clipboard to Hannah, but pausing as everyone gets dragged onto the elevator. "It's Project: CARNELIAN, mostly. They've been analyzing some things that are related to my own research, but they won't release the data without your okay." She waves the clipboard. "So I've been stuck here all afternoon doing paperwork." Clearly a horrible fate.

The elevator ride is a bit awkward, with everyone waiting quietly as the lift takes them up. The janitor's closet doesn't faze her, nor does the dimensional translocation - she's been through such things before, and even this particular one.

"It's still an ongoing project, but with the need to make sure of a constant supply of Grief Seeds, priorities ... may have shifted a bit. It's still an impressive bit of work." She waves the clipboard at the containment unit. "I'll admit it's sort of frightening to look at, but you've both been in combat situations with them before... and it's not as if we don't have the firepower to deal with it if it ever does break loose."
Hannah Sharpe 2016-02-21 03:42:36 30278
Hannah /grins/ to Madoka. After Homura helps her up anyway. "Heh, sorry! Should've warned you! Dimensional compression is something else, right? Sensei..err..right. Nothing."

A shrug, and Homura pipes up. "Yup. Several months ago, Pinkball. Basically, lots of static shielding to turn the despair back in on itself, a few binding runes to make sure if it /does/ get out that it's chained down for a while. Several systems set up to flood the chamber to the ceiling with acids strong enough to melt a Witch...yes, corrosive substances work on Witches in sufficient quantities. Then, should that fail, it floods the room with military grade napalm, locks down the entire facility, and alerts me to come clean it up."

Madoka lets out the uncomfortable elephant in the room. Hannah's brow twitches, and HOmura gets a sidelong 'glance'. There's definitely still unresolved issues there. But now is not the time to punch a friend. "...Well. I'm kind of beyond the pale at this point. Whether it was or wasn't is mostly irrelevent. Mostly. Madoka. I'm going to be blunt with you. I want your power. The ability to turn a Witch back into a human. That's my top priority. I'd like you to help me replicate that power, so we can make it accessible to any magical girl. Spread it. So we can turn that miracle into the end of half-broken mages called 'Puella' and stop all of this suffering. That's my goal in studying Puella Magi and Witches. Ending it."

A shake of the head. "...Though I'll admit, giving Kyubey a kick in the tail's going to utterly satisfying." Her grin is way too shark like.

Hannah chuckles at the compliment. "Stagnation brings death, Homura. That's what I hate about Puella. You guys are so brilliant, and yet, you're not like a Device User. You can only innovate so much. Us? Well. We're all about change. Pushing the envelope. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we could /fix/ you all, and unlock your real potential? Not having to be a slave to that little red-eyed bastard's whims?" Her voice soaks in purpose, ambition, and more than a little idealism.

As for the Familiars? "Not entirely. Bob needs food. Now obviously I'm not giving it humans, but...well, throw in some old lab animals, dead pets, the occasional 'science corpse' or two? It's expensive, but it works. Grisly task, but that's what you have to do. And I've found that going in and slaughtering it, then letting it grow back from the grief seed helps with the creation rate. Might just be bias though, haven't had the time to give a conclusive study." Shrug.

Blue earns a laugh. "Hah! I know that fate. Anyway, what's the details? Wait, no, nevermind. Just keep it on budget and on schedule. /Surprise/ me! I'll up your research budget if the results make me smile! Remember Blue: the bigger, the more ambitious, the more insane? That's how we do it at WPS! Push things until they break!"

Those diagrams are /definitely/ self-experimentation related. Hannah catches the look thanks to her Device.

"That's my latest project. You see, my Linker Core's output...well, let's just say I'm not exactly a natural genius. So to do the level of magic I do, I put the strain on my body. Useful, in some ways, but I'll never reach my full potential without passing that limit. I'll kill myself otherwise. So I'm trying a few ideas. Besides. Soul gems and Linker Cores aren't /too/ dissimilar in my opinion. If I can research both, I might be able to convert a soul gem to a linker core, and be one step further to solving that little 'magic gone equals death-slash-Witching' problem for you guys." It's all said way too casually.

Then, she turns to Madoka. "So. Got any questions about what I'm doing? Or in general? The...next thing you guys probably won't like too much. But it's necessary." Hannah sudden grows far more sober, respectful even.
Madoka Akemi 2016-02-21 04:16:00 30288
    Madoka accepts Homura's help as she gets up and nods her head, "Thanks." She gives a quick nod of her head, "Yeah, I'll be fine. I tripped and then everything got confusing and I wasn't sure where to put my foot down..." It's fairly embarrassing because if she had just continued on as if nothing had happened she wouldn't have fallen at all! She gives a mostly dismissive wave to Hannah as she apologizes; she knows knocking her to the ground wasn't the intent. If Hannah wanted to do that it probably would have hurt a heck of a lot more!

    She looks between Mikoto, Homura, and Hannah as they explain the general situation. As optimistic as she likes to be this situation is one that has her very out of her depths. "I understand that you want to be able to help, and in the long run I suppose a Witch is caught in the midst of torment and despair no matter where it is. In some small way even if it was a Puella Magi once, at least she's being kept somewhere where she can't hurt people. Most of the Puella Magi I know would think that's the most important thing."

    She gives the three of them a comforting smile, and Homura in particular. She knows very well just how impossible her task seemed and how out of sorts she must have been to find this very different world. The particulars of how Hannah 'feeds' her Witch was something she had wondered, because as far as she knew Familiars only grew by eating people. The way Hannah is handling it is probably the best possible way it can be done. And yet...

    Madoka looks a little sick, swallowing hard so she doesn't gag and stepping away from window so she doesn't have to look towards the Labyrinth held inside and the Witch she can feel raging beyond it. True, it's not much different from feeding a zoo animal; the lions and bears there need meat too, but seeing them tear into meat isn't exactly her idea of a good time. The thought that the Witch might actually be being fed human bodies. Well, that's why she's standing over -there- now, away from the creature and not looking much in Hannah's direction anymore, either.

    Hannah talks about converting Soul Gems into Linker Cores somehow and Madoka has some idea of what that means, but mostly by guessing at it. It has to be pretty obvious by this point that she hasn't said anything about Hannah's stated goal- to study and obtain her power.

    The pink-haried girl's expression is thoughtful and a little worried. Eventually she turns around and looks to Hannah. "I'm sorry... but I can't let you. At least, not as things stand now." She looks around herself a bit, motioning to the various doors and hallways, "Where are we, Hannah-chan," she asks, using her real name despite the henshin, figuring everyone here must know it. "Where are we standing right now? This is your laboratory, but where did you get it from? Who's paying for it all? I know I'm only just starting to learn about the magical world, but many of the things you do- they're not good. And whoever it is paying for you to do all this research, they're fine with that."

    She holds a hand up to her chest and gives a shake of her head, "If it was just you, I think I would let you study my power, but this thing you're a part of- I don't think I can let them have it. I'm not saying you should give up or not try, but it isn't something I can help you with."

    She takes in a deep breath and lets it out, "My power isn't something I learned to do; it was a miracle granted to me by Kyubey. And when I save a Witch, I'm not just turning them back to human, I'm taking their grief and despair upon myself in order to do it. Ask Homura-chan if you need to understand; I don't think what I do, the way I do it, is something you're going to learn how to do through science anyway. Even if you could turn a Witch and her Grief Seed back into a Soul Gem... if you didn't help them before you did it I'm very sure they would fall into despair and become a Witch again almost as soon as they woke up."

    She takes a step forward and holds her arm out, "I believe you when you say you want to help us and end this terrible cycle. But Hannah-chan... how much more damage could be done to us if that kind of power fell into the wrong hands? You want to give this power to any magical girl? What about the ones who would use it against us? It is awful that Kyubey uses us... but I believe him when he says he isn't trying to be cruel. He doesn't understand how awful what he's doing is- I can't let that kind of power fall into the hands of someone who does know but will do it anyway... so I'm sorry."
Homura Akemi 2016-02-21 04:29:44 30289
    Homura responds, or adds to, what Miss Blue has to say about containment. "I have perfect faith in the... containment procedures White has devised, after having inspected them myself. I'm pretty sure any Witches powerful or clever enough to survive those would at least be weakened enough for others to finish them off."

    Of course, that's assuming that Hannah isn't doing something crazy like storing a Walpurgisnacht familiar in here. Which... yeah, Homura is assuming that.

    'Stagnation brings death.' Homura nods. "Yeah, well. Usually the moment one of us starts poking around in things and starts finding out the truth..." She gestures towards 'Bob'. "That happens."

    She nods in agreement. "It would be nice, if there was a way to avoid all of that... but Hannah, it's not just a matter of everyday magic. Our wishes bend the laws of the universe, and that comes with a price. Whatever solution you find will have to square with that. Somehow it has to break even."

    Homura steps forward and rests her hand on the bulletproof glass. "The despair this creature emits is just a reflection of what it feels. It's not good, or even what we'd consider fair, but it's not without reason. The laws of the universe seem to have a very different opinion on what is 'fair' or not, and it enforces its rules through this. Our wishes break those rules, and this is is the punishment. The stronger you try to fight that..." Homura glances towards Madoka, "...the stronger the universe will fight you back."

    After thinking about it for a moment, Homura does have to agree with what Madoka says about the Puella not wanting to hurt people. "It's true... none of the Puella Magi I've seen really wanted to hurt people. It's just that when we fall into despair or run out of magic, Soul Gem transforms and causes us to become one of those monsters. Once you do that... you no longer have self-control. I couldn't even stop my familiars from attacking Madoka. Some of them respected my wishes anyways, but only some."

    She turns towards Hannah, pulling away from the glass. "Not that I expect that'll stop you. It's a ridiculous system anyways, and proof that the universe is wrong on a fundamental level."

    The explanation of the diagrams makes sense to Homura. She nods. "Makes sense. You're always trying to improve yourself. It would be nice if people could benefit from that research." Realistically this is a warning she should have given Hannah a while ago, but she couldn't because reasons.

    Homura gets ready to move onto the next thing, because Hannah is. Homura's pretty sure she could stomach whatever Hannah shows her. It's what Madoka feels about it that Homura's more concerned about it. Between the two of them, Homura's still pretty sure that Madoka is the only one with a functioning conscience.

    When Madoka speaks her mind, Homura listens, and then nods. She is here to stand by her girlfriend, after all. "It's true. If Madoka hadn't dealt with my despair on a personal level, I would've just turned into a Witch again upon seeing her as a Puella Magi, and it all would've been for nothing."
Mikoto Nakajima 2016-02-21 04:40:04 30291
Blue holds out the clipboard for White to sign off on the CARNELIAN forms, given that she's just proclaimed her support for the girl's efforts. "I'll admit, I'd like to see that. Some way to free you from that dependency on Grief Seeds and that damn alien..." She shrugs. "It's going to take time and a lot of work."

She nods to Homura's answer to her concerns about containment. "At least that's one worry off my mind. I've had to clean up after some less-successful measures in the past... it wasn't pretty." She shrugs, though.

And takes a little time studying the rune arrays Hannah mentioned, making sure to have her Device store images of them so she can review them properly later. "Improving yourself is definitely worth it, and everything we do involves risk. We accepted that when we started this."

She listens to the (abbreviated) tale of Homura's Issues, and nods. "Well, congratulations, then, Kaname-san. You two deserve some happiness." She offers a light, pleasant smile. "Have you got a honeymoon planned? Maybe something special and romantic, just the two of you?"
Hannah Sharpe 2016-02-21 05:10:34 30297
The comforting smile has Hannah closing one eye. She has a feeling she won't like what's coming next.

There's a brief sympathetic look. "...I'll admit, a lot of what I do isn't exactly above board. The price of progress, et cetera. Here." She produces a paper bag upon seeing Madoka look sick. It's not the first time she's seen tis reaction, after all. And then that thoughtful expression turns to her, and she sighs. A rub of the back of her head with her one hand, and she gives a rather sad smile. "Good questions. Didn't think you were an idiot! Sorry. Can't say. You're right, I'll admit. I have allies. Powerful ones. But I don't sell out people who've done me good. So no. I won't tell you who they are. Well, I won't deny that. Nope. I don't do good things a lot of the time. I'd wager most of the time, but that I'll leave to you guys to judge. Yeah. That's right. Good? Evil? I don't particularly care too much about those things. All I care about is results and goals." A vague shrug.

She chuckles, long and hard. "Good instincts. Honestly? Some of my 'colleagues' want to kill me already! I don't blame you. We're not good people. Alright. If you don't want to help? Well. As long as you're still striving forward with the power you've gained? You're alright by me, Madoka. But promise me something. You'll push forward. You'll use your...hah!...Miracle to /change/ this world! Even if it's just one Puella Magi. Just one. That's all I ask. Then everything else is alright with me." A vague shrug.

And then Madoka gives up important information. Her eyes close.

"...Is that so? So your process is to remove Grief and pull it into yourself. That's a pretty terrible burden. But it's useful. Useful information, anyway. I'm sorry you have to hold that kind of weight." She honestly sounds remorseful here.

Then she brightens. "What are you talking about? So Kyubey gave you that power? So what!? IF he gave it to you, it can be reproduced! It won't be easy, but reverse engineering is possible! I won't accept limitations. Never! We're magical girls after all! No possibility is beyond our reach! We just need the strength, Madoka! With enough power? We can accomplish anything!" She laughs, long and hard, sure in her convication. That magic can accomplish any seemingly impossible goal.

Finally, she chuckles. "Well, I wouldn't give it to the openly cruel. But I'll admit, a miracle cheapend is one that's sold to anybody. So you're not wrong about the possibiltiy. But I think the risks are less than the benefits."

She turns to Homura. A weak smile. "Well at least there's idiots like me, right? If you guys die by advancing? I'll carry that burden. Share it all with me. That unfair situation of Puella Magi? I'll utterly destroy it! I won't stand for it! No matter what it takes, I'll...!" She growls out, then sucks in a breath.

She runs a hand through her hair. "'Everyday' magic? What are you talking about!? I won't accept 'break even'! I won't accept 'square'! I don't care what this unfair world, what this unfair /UNIVERSE/ wants! We have magic! The source of infinite potential! I'll make this world right, so that no human, Puella Magi or otherwise, has to suffer like they do now! Or I'll die trying, damnit!" She huffs, and puffs, even Hannah sounding tired by her tirade. She runs a hand again through her hair.

Squint. "So the point being, a Witch needs control and self-realization. Interesting. Thanks." A thoughtful frown. Clearly, Hannah isn't dettered.

Yoink! Blue gets a sign-off right quick. "Make me proud, Blue!" She encourages, cheerily.

A nod to the encouragement, then she leads the groups to the next room. It's a steel room, adorned with crosses. A perhaps oddly reverent mausolemum for one person. Catholic imagery is everywhere, and in a single cryochamber, lays the body of a fallen Puella. The fire-wielding girl that Hannah had offered her services to not long ago lays preserved. Nearby, a single grief seed floats, contained with magic.

"My last magical client. Good kid. She died, but I saved her body. I..." Teeth grit. Tears form. She wipes them away.

"I was too slow. Too /WEAK/ to save her. So. I know it all know, Homura. The truth about Witches and Puella. I'll bring this kid back if it kills me." She offers.

Then, she turns to the group, and nods.

"So that's it. My goals, I mean. I'll do what I have to in order to correct the tragedy of this world, including the Puella. If you want to fight me over it, Homura, Madoka? Fine. I respect that. I just have one request. I can be...an idiot, sometimes, Homura. Keep Madoka safe, okay? Promise me?"

In the end, she smiles to Homura brightly.
Madoka Akemi 2016-02-21 05:34:49 30301
    Madoka looks over to Homura and offers her a reassuring smile when she's glanced at. It's true. And it's also true that her Wish was like a direct slap in the to the universe itself, trying to buck those very 'punishments'. There's little doubt that some time, in some way there is going to be something terrible waiting for her as recompense. That doesn't mean she's going to give up or stop living her life in fear of it; it means she needs to push forward and prepare herself for whatever it might be.

    Miss Blue's congratulations do manage to get a happy smile from her. And then she says the word 'honeymoon' and Madoka blinks widely in surprise, "H-honeymoon?! We're not-! We didn't! I mean! Uuum!" It seems that word has struck a bit of a nerve even if it wasn't intended and the pink haired girl flails around a little before ending in a sigh, slumping forward a bit in extreme embarrassment, her face having turned bright red.

    The embarrassment would likely sit and gnaw at her for a good while, except that the things being talked about here are so important she can't afford to just stew in it. So even as her face stays red she nods to Hannah and replies, "I'll do my best to help Puella Magi, Hannah-chan. More than one; as many as I can." She smiles as Miss White talks about her burden, "Thank you. But if that's what it takes to help, then I'm willing to do it. Homura-chan has often told me that I'm stronger than I realize... I can do this. It might be difficult, but I know I can handle it. Even if it's a burden I won't let it stop me."

    Hannah talks about reproducing her power, and Madoka looks... unconvinced. She absolutely adores Miss White's enthusiasm and zeal, but if there's one thing she's learned about things involving Puella Magi it's that nearly everything to do with them has unintended consequences. "Thank you for caring so much, Hannah-chan," she eventually says. "You're right that there are many things about this world that are unfair, and that should be changed. Just... try not to forget that there are so many things work keeping and protecting as well."

    She follows to the steel room, looking around a little and blinking. She's struck dumb for a few moments, taking in the sight of the room, it's decoration, and more importantly it's contents. Her expression is nearly unreadable, but then she walks over to Miss White, lifts up on her toes, and wraps her arms around the much taller girl and pulls her very close into a fierce hug. "I'm sorry. I'm sorry this happened to one of your friends, Hannah-chan. I'm sorry you had to see that happen." She then gives a shake of her head, "Don't blame yourself. If you were helping her you probably gave her more time than she would have had otherwise. I know you're a good person inside, Hannah-chan. You didn't do this; don't blame yourself."

    After several long moments of hugging she pulls away, looking up to the woman with a look of fierce resolve. "Maybe I will let you study my power... but just once- for her." She looks over towards the chambered body and the Grief Seed. "If you really want to make a difference, then I have homework for you. I need you to find out everything you can about her; her friends, her family. Most importantly I need you to find out what her Wish was, and what happened that caused her to fall into despair. If you can learn those things... then I may be able to save her."
Homura Akemi 2016-02-21 05:46:20 30304
    Homura blushes at the mention of a 'honeymoon'. "What do kn- er... haha, I don't know what you mean by that! Hahahaha..." Homura totally didn't spend countless hours daydreaming about something like that! Nope! Though Homura's so busy being embarrassed herself that she doesn't quite notice Madoka's reaction..

    To Hannah, Homura shrugs. "If you want to make fate your enemy, I'm not going to stop you, or even discourage you. Our wishes our dangerous, but they are also proof that things can be changed." She turns to smile at Madoka, "You've already changed one thing, and it's a big deal in of itself. You are strong. I've seen it with my own eyes, just how strong you are." The strength that Homura is talking about isn't just magical, either. Madoka's never failed to impress her.

    Homura isn't just carelessly speaking, nor is she trying to dissuade Hannah. She knows that such a thing is impossible. She's saying what she thinks Hannah needs in order to complete her research. When Hannah says thanks, Homura smiles. "Just saying what I've already noticed. No need to reinvent the wheel, right?"

    Homura looks away and tries to hide her frown at Madoka saying that she wants to protect things in this universe. She knows the form and strength of Madoka's Witch, and that makes her wonder how much Madoka would really be protecting in the end. Homura decides not to say it. That's a secret she still wants to keep, and there's no point in making things harder.

    Homura goes into the next room, and sees... a Grief Seed, and a Puella Magi? Are these two...?

    She slowly turns her head towards Hannah, eyes widen for a moment, but then she frowns and nods. "So. That's how it is. Well, it happens. We live a dangerous life. As long as our Soul Gem stays intact we can keep going, but there's a limit to that. I'll do anything to make sure that Madoka doesn't share that fate, but I can only protect so many people."

    She turns towards Hannah. Will they fight again, like they used to? Maybe. It's not impossible, especially since they are going in very different directions. "I will keep her safe, though. No matter what it takes."

    Madoka tells Hannah what she'll need in order to save this girl... and Homura looks at her girlfriend, reaching out to hold her hand supportively. She knows that it takes something out of Madoka to do that, but if she's willing, then Homura is behind her all the way.
Mikoto Nakajima 2016-02-21 05:57:12 30307
Blue flashes the Puella Pair a warm smile, at their reaction to her suggestion of a honeymoon. Just to tease them further, she makes an offer. "My family has a flat in Rome that we almost never use... I'm sure I could swing at least a week there, if you wanted..." She chuckles lightly, but she can certainly follow through if she had to.

"I don't believe in destiny. Or fate. Or any of that. There's no such thing as impossible. Me, I'm working on helping a good friend recovery from an old spinal injury. I've sworn that I'll find a way for her to walk again. And I will do it." And she doesn't much care how.

And then they're in the next room, and there's a body in a box. "This... this is the kind of thing I signed on here to prevent. To make sure that no more girls have to end up feeding that damned alien's plans. So if you really can help her... then that's the first true light of hope I've seen for the whole plan. You really are a miracle, Kaname-san."

She pauses, then makes an exquisitely formal bow to the pinkette, holding it for several seconds before straightening.
Hannah Sharpe 2016-02-23 19:30:11 30853
Hannah gives a little chuckle. "Good. That's a good attitude. Having a goal will keep you going, even at the worst of times." Pause. A wink to Homura. "Though I don't think you'll be lacking in people who care about you in that regards."

But unconvinced or not, Hannah shakes her head. "If I thought that, Madoka, I wouldn't do what I do. I can't stand this world. But the people in it? Well. Something worth saving indeed." A rub of the back of her head.

A deep hug in return. Her face twitches, and it's only through sheer pride that she doesn't break down crying. "There's no one else to blame. My entire company is founded on stopping.../this/! Teaching you all how to fight and stay alive." She gets choked up for a moment, before letting out a frustrated hiss through her teeth.

"...Heh. Thank you, Madoka. Alright. I've already got a file on her, but I'll do more digging."

Homura earns a genuine smile, and she pumps her fist! "You're right, Homura! Absolutely right! If some Incubator can do it, who says we can't change things!? We've got this right next to us, right?" Reeeeach! Madoka gets a nose poke!

A wave of the hand. "I don't expect you to. Focus on her. She's the most important. By protecting Madoka, you're protecting other people."

Blue similarly gets a nod. "We can do anything with magic, power, and ambition."