Can You Explain The Clockwork?

Following the scene Evening Snack Attack, Sky Jack evacuates Sunshine Spark and Sachiko to a nearby rooftop for them to wake up. The Clockwork Caseworker menaces little Sachiko.

Date: 2016-03-21
Pose Count: 32
Kukai Souma 2016-03-21 23:38:06 35210
Having two unconsious girls you need to move is hard, even for a magical boy. Doing it and making sure nobody sees you is doubly hard. Doing it in a time limit measured by 'how soon Lacrima's other three victims wake up' is triply difficult.

So Sky Jack may panic for a moment. It's not exactly like this went how he'd expected. He'd followed his heart - followed the call of his guardian angels - and things had gone pear-shaped in a big hurry.

So, in the middle of downtown, Sky Jack found a rooftop with a wide cloth cover, meant for parties and pretty days, and exhaustedly deposited both girls on top of it.

His only prayer is that both girls wake up quickly, or he's going to need to carry them to the hospital - something he's looking up the location of on his phone.
Greta Legend 2016-03-21 23:55:45 35211
She doesn't wake up as quickly as one would like, but being that Greta is a magical girl, her recovery time is significantly reduced because magic! It's true! A groan slips from her lips and Greta begins to stir, feeling incredibly sore and groggy, "Ugh... Why do I feel like..." She blinks a little as she notices Sky Jack sitting over there, and she sits up a little, "Sk-Sky Jack...? Wha... How did I...?"

And then it all flashes back to her. The argument, the vampire girl, Sachiko falling from the air, "SACHIKO!" She's up and alert, snapping her head everywhere in order to search for her, "Where is she? Is she hurt?!"
Sachiko Hayakawa 2016-03-22 00:06:42 35212
She isn't far. In fact, she's right next to Greta, laid down on the ground as nicely as Sky Jack could, head pillowed on her arms as she slumbers. At the scream of her name, Sachiko stirs lightly, but she doesn't rouse, just yet. "An-chi," she mumbles, just the name and nothing more.
Kukai Souma 2016-03-22 00:10:02 35213
Sky Jack is right next to the two of them, sitting against a wide planter with a tall fern in it. At the sound of Greta and Sachiko stirring, he moves over, looking over, reaching out to take Greta's hand. "Hey, hey - calm down, she's right next to you."

He looks over to see Sachiko stirring faintly, then pats Greta on the shoulder. "Everything's ok. At least, if you're ok."
Greta Legend 2016-03-22 00:23:38 35214
"Right next to--" Greta turns and checks the indicated direction, and finally sees the girl she'd been trying to protect, and quickly scrambles to look over, "She's okay? She's okay... Okay.." She takes a breath, and sits back, relief enveloping her, and she rubs her face, "Okay... So... What happened again..?"
Kukai Souma 2016-03-22 00:30:10 35215
Sky Jack lets out a long, slow breath. "Well. I was patrolling this evening, flying through part of town I don't usually come to, because I've got some stuff on my mind, right? Well, I hear a scream, and I come around a corner, and I see Sachiko tackling that girl with the purple hair. She didn't have the bodysuit at that point, though."

"I decided to interfere and help, and it turns out the vampire girl - I think Sachiko said her name was La-cream-something - had drained Sachiko. I went to drive her off, and then you showed up, and..." He shakes his head. "And then I learned she's Anshi's little sister you mentioned and I had a moment. All I really wanted to do was get out of there."

He looks over at Sachiko with narrowed eyes. "And then she decided she wanted to go to you, kicked me in the nose, and jumped. If I hadn't kicked that shot just before she tried to get loose I think she'd have made a puddle."
Greta Legend 2016-03-22 00:46:39 35216
Greta narrows her eyes a little when the mentions his having a moment, and mutters, "Well if you had just handed her over---!" Greta begins, her anger bubbling back up again, before her groggy head kicks in and she wobbles, forcing her into a lean against the ground, "Nnngh... That stupid..."

A moment after taking a breath, she mumbles, "Sorry... I... Ever since Anshi died, I've been trying to make it up to her... Make things right by her... Protecting Sachiko's the only thing I could think of..."

Gretta lays herself down against the ground and sighs, "I think I only made things worse by showing up... Nearly got her killed... I can't believe I was so careless."
Kukai Souma 2016-03-22 00:56:43 35217
Sky Jack shakes his head. "I... I should have handed her over. You were right. But I felt like I had to take care of her. Something inside me-" He doesn't want to say Daichi. Not just yet. "-made me want to protect her, to defend her."

He sighs and shakes his head. "I have her sister as my guardian angel. I believe that truly. So I saw her in trouble and when I realized who she was I... flipped."

He pats Greta's hand again. "If she hadn't kicked me though I wouldn't have dropped her."
Greta Legend 2016-03-22 01:16:08 35218
Greta shakes her head, "I let myself get so obsessed... I shouldn't have... It was hard to just trust anyone else to..." She rubs her face down, "Sorry, Sky Jack.." She grumbles, before sitting back up, "What was Sachiko doing out anyway? I checked on her home and found she climbed out using a blanked ladder."
Sachiko Hayakawa 2016-03-22 01:19:39 35219
Sachiko lets out a soft squeak of discomfort, then shifts. Drawing her legs up into her many ruffled petticoats, the little girl groans in pain and exhaustion. "An-chi," she mumbles again quietly, this time a whimper of unhappiness.

Then, suddenly, she twists and sits up, eyes wide open. "GRETA!!!" she screams, piercing and terrified, before she realizes that she's not, in fact, falling. There's no Lacrima. There are no bodies.
Kukai Souma 2016-03-22 01:23:23 35220
"It's ok. Believe me, I know what it's like to get obsessed over something." He grins. "I play a bunch of sports. But she's a good thing to be worried over."

He shakes his head. "Don't be sorry. It's ok. And I have no idea what she was doing. I just found~"

And then Sachiko sits up, screaming, and Sky Jack falls backwards, letting out a yelp. "Oi! What is that?"
Greta Legend 2016-03-22 01:27:59 35221
    Greta likewise flinches at the scream, rather than trying to flee, she instead shifts right over to Sachiko and grabs her, pulling her into a hug, "I'm here, Sachiko! I'm here! Everything's fine now!" She sniffles and squeezes, "Everything's fine..."

    She sucks in a breath, trying not to just burst into tears, and leans back, "What are you doing out here, Sachiko? Why did you leave home?"
Sachiko Hayakawa 2016-03-22 01:30:06 35222
Wide-eyed, the little girl looks utterly confused when Greta hugs her. But then reality seems to catch up in her mind as she whimpers, "Greta-chan," and clings to the girl like velcro. "She was going to eat you! I saw her try to eat you! She's a vampire! I thought you were gonna die, and you can't die. I need your help to get An-chi back. We have to get An-chi back," she explains by not explaining at all. "The Clockwork Lord has her, and he's making sure she doesn't have any time left! We gotta save her!"
Kukai Souma 2016-03-22 01:38:31 35223
Sky Jack moves around as well onto Sachiko's other side, moving to his knees and listening to the two of them talk. "Wait, wait. Wait. What is this about the Clockwork Lord? Who's got Anshi?" He's still pretty sure he saw Anshi's spirit - rather recently and quite dead - and the idea that someone is holding her confuses him mightily.

He looks over at Greta. "Can you... maybe explain to me what all's going on?"
Greta Legend 2016-03-22 01:51:55 35224
Greta shakes her head, "I'm fine, Sachiko, of course I'm fine! The vampire is gone now, it's okay...!" It's the next bunch of words that fills her with confusion as much as Sky Jack is, and caresses Sachiko's cheek, "Sachiko-chan, there isn't any such thing as a Clockwork Lord..."
Sachiko Hayakawa 2016-03-22 02:20:19 35225
"He's got her, he's got her!" Sachiko insists, clinging to Greta tightly. "And the Clockwork Caseworker tells me about her Lord all the time! She tells me how An-chi's time is up, and how mine's coming soon if I don't watch it! And I gotta get An-chi! I gotta get her back, I need An-chi!" she's crying, now, openly as she clings to the Sunshine Spark.
Greta Legend 2016-03-22 02:49:00 35226
    Greta squeezes Sachiko tightly, "Sachiko, listen..." She caresses Sachiko's cheek, trying to sooth her and calm her down, her eyes going to Sky Jack briefly, before focusing on the girl again, "There is no Clockwork Lords, or Caseworkers or monsters... I would know if there was... Anshi isn't in danger... She's fighting the monsters and saving the day..."
Kukai Souma 2016-03-22 02:50:32 35227
Sky Jack looks over at Greta again for a moment, then shakes his head. "Is she... where is this all coming from? Why's she talking about clockwork people? What is going on, exactly?"

He shakes his head and reaches over, patting Sachiko on the back, still near the two of them. "I... " He looks over at Greta for a moment. "She doesn't get it, does she?"

He frowns and then shakes his head. "Greta, you know that's not true. Anshi isn't fighting any monsters anymore."
Sachiko Hayakawa 2016-03-22 02:56:30 35228
Sachiko looks almost relieved at Greta's words. "there's no Clockwork Lord?" she asks quietly. "But Miss Satomi-san said that the Lord had taken An-chi before her time, and mister Arabato-san said that An-chi ran out of time."

The little girl turns her head towards Kukai, then back to Greta, then back to Kukai. "You knew An-chi? Where is she? I miss An-chi."
Greta Legend 2016-03-22 03:01:18 35230
    Greta hears that from Sky Jack and immediately turns and shoots him a glare that has one very explicity meaning 'SHUT. UP.' Before she looks back to Sachiko, and holding her, "The Lord has taken her before---" She then facepalms, "So that's what you've been going on about..." She mutters, before whispering, "Let me just talk to Sky Jack."

    She then stands up and walks over to the taller guy, and grabs at his ear lobe to tug him OUT of ear shot.
Kukai Souma 2016-03-22 03:06:09 35231
Sky Jack leans back from that look and then is grabbed by the ear a moment later. "Ow ow ow ow - let go!" By this point they're over to one side away from Sachiko, and Sky Jack pitches his voice downwards, turning slightly to put his back to Sachiko so she can't hear them speak. "Look. Anshi is dead. What is she going on about with clockwork things? Is this your doing? Can you not tell her what's really going on?"

He motions through himself back towards Sachiko and looks at Greta. "The longer she thinks her sister is alive and out there somewhere needing to be saved the longer she's going to be throwing herself at vampires and out of windows. I don't want to tell her and I know you probably don't even more than I don't but it's got to happen."
Sachiko Hayakawa 2016-03-22 03:09:51 35233
Sachiko looks very confused, but she's also extremely tired. And she understands when grownups need to talk. So rather than trying to follow or listen in, the little girl instead reaches into her wrist pouch and pulls out a bit of string. She hums quietly to herself as she starts working on a cat's cradle.
Greta Legend 2016-03-22 03:15:52 35234
    "NO, I CAN'T!" Despite Greta's best efforts at keeping herself level, that question, that single question, pierces the armor that she'd been trying to build after the events, that she's shaken, hugging herself as she tries to get a hold of herself.

    "I can't... You weren't there... I can't tell her what really happened... It will destroy her..."
Kukai Souma 2016-03-22 03:20:32 35236
"Even more destroyed than massive trauma or internal bleeding or dark energy consumption?" He sighs, then shakes his head. ".... Ok, fine. We'll keep doing it your way. Do you have my number in your phone? If you lose her again you can call me, anytime, and I'll come help if I'm able."

Jack looks back at Sachiko for a moment, then at Greta. ".... I guess I understand, in a way. I was about to ask why it was so hard to tell her, but I saw it. I had nightmares about it. So I get it. But this is... dangerous. In a lot of ways. You're playing a dangerous game with her, every moment."

He shakes his head again. "Do you feel good enough to get her back to where she was staying?"
Sachiko Hayakawa 2016-03-22 03:27:14 35237
Sachiko's humming ends instantly at Greta's yell. She turns to regard the pair, then slides off the seat she's on. Her skate shoes make little click-clack noises as she walks her way towards them, giving plenty of warning that she's coming.

She doesn't say anything, though, when she arrives. She just reaches up and carefully takes Greta's hand in her own.
Greta Legend 2016-03-22 03:44:12 35240
    Greta getits her teeth and whispers, "I don't know what else to do... When I found Sachiko, she was all by herself and hysterical, cold and drenched, scared and all alone! It was everything I could do to get her to stop crying..." She sniffles, "So I told her Anshi was a Magical girl and was fighting a terrible monster... It was the truth, and I thought it worked..."

    She hears the footsteps and turns about quickly, and takes Sachiko's hand into hers, "Alright, you want to go home now?" She gives Sachiko's cheek a pinch, "Don't escape from your house again, you might run into monsters again."
Kukai Souma 2016-03-22 03:49:31 35241
Sky Jack nods, then reaches down and pets Sachiko on the shoulder. "Listen." It's hard for him to get the words out. "... After being attacked by that girl, you should take a few days and rest. You won't do anyone any good if you go to fly and we have to scrape you off the pavement, ok?"

He pats her shoulder again, then looks at Greta. "... Seeya." It's about all he can get out as he brings his flying skateboard into existance and raises up, moving away and heading back into the evening and his patrol, his heart not really into it now.
Sachiko Hayakawa 2016-03-22 03:50:35 35242
Sachiko blinks in confusion, then looks between Greta and Sky Jack a few times before stepping forward and saying, "Wait." She hesitates a moment, then asks, "Who are you? You said you knew An-chi. Do you know where she is?"
Greta Legend 2016-03-22 04:09:03 35246
    Greta picks up Sachiko before she can ask too many more question, "This is Sky Jack. He's a magical boy..." She looks at Kukai with a bit of a squint, wondering how acurate that is, before saying, "But he knows Anshi, and he knows that she's safe.."
Kukai Souma 2016-03-22 04:12:52 35247
Sky Jack grins and then nods. "Safe as it gets, I suppose. See you two around." With that, he rolls the skateboard towards the edge of the roof and leaps off, hanging onto the board and feeling it 'catch' on the air, carrying him back off into the night.
Sachiko Hayakawa 2016-03-22 04:13:58 35248
Sachiko latches onto Greta, arms wrapped around the blonde's neck. "Is he a good guy?" she asks quietly as Sky Jack races away. "Will he help me be good so An-chi can come back someday?" The little girl puts her head on Greta's shoulder, clearly ready to fall asleep again.
Greta Legend 2016-03-22 04:28:26 35252
"Of course. Sky Jack's a good guy." She smiles and holds Sachiko tightly with one arm, device in the other hand, "We'll all help you...." She doesn't finish the sentence, tears rolling down her cheeks as she flies, carrying the girl back home.