Contracts


Norie Okana goes off to join Eclipse- specfically, UMBRA. Riventon and Norie talk a little bit about the nature of power and the nature of heroes and what 'being cured' means.

Date: 2016-04-18
Pose Count: 15
Lacrima 2016-04-18 20:03:42 38939
Norie Okana called, as promised, the day after the machine turned into a goopy molassses mess.

She asked to meet, she was given a time and a place (most likely) and began the journey across Tokyo to there via buses. Norie Okana was used to the busses. She didn't like them anymore. Not like she used to. She used to like people watching and looking at different people and making idle conversation- but usually she huddled herself near a corner in the back of the bus and kept her face squarely centered on the window looking outside through the tinted bus windows.

This was her stop. She got off, and pursed her lips. This should be the place?

Does she knock? Does she walk in?

It's in a commerical place, so it can't be a residence, can it? It looks like a warehouse.... Still...

Norie Okana walks into the main office area/lobby and looked around confusedly. She expected maybe, some sort of shiny black marble adornment and this is like... almost feels normal. She looks just a little lost. She walks up to the front desk--- "I'm here for an appointment... Norie Okana." she says uncerimoniously. "I am not late." she insists
Takashi Agera 2016-04-18 20:21:46 38942
UMBRA's headquarters is largely normal, except for the fact that entry into the place is via a backdoor which should lead to a small warehouse but clearly doesn't, and the place seems a lot bigger than the warehouse in question ought to be. And there's windows, which the warehouse seems to lack in this configuaration, which appear to open to the blue Tokyo sky. If one were to look out those windows, the wierdness would find its capstone - in that it's an upside down view of the Mitakihara skyline, like the UMBRA HQ is in a building placed upside-down against the sky.

The receptionist at the front desk rises, and it's then that it's obvious - she's one of those dark energy constructs that looks like robots but clearly isn't - one of Eclipse's roboyouma. She nods, wordlessly passing Norie a sign-in sheet. Once it's signed, she'll open the door - still oddly silent - and gestures down a hall to the left where a sign reads "Riventon, UMBRA Director."

A while ago, during the incident with Madoka, Takashi Agera had gone to great lengths to purge his 'real life' name from UMBRA and Eclipse's records, and stopped showing up to meet people he didn't know out of henshin. Just another push to keep his civilian identity as safe as possible. As Norie waits, a couple more roboyouma private security walk by, their hats pulled low as if to disguise their nonhuman features - to keep them from startling the workers too much. The place itself seems oddly empty, like it was designed for a much larger workforce than is currently there.

Eventually, though, the door opens and reveals Riventon, who smiles and waves Norie in. The office is... both nice and sparse, in the sense that there's a great view of the (upside-down) skyline, and a beautiful mahogony desk, and massive chairs for both Riventon and his guests. But the office also seems to lack any sort of decoration or art, even the usual bits that would pass for an attempt at it in a business. It just feels... bare.

"Have a seat... I'm glad you called." Riventon says, smiling, and looking to some degree like a smile just doesn't belong on that face.
Lacrima 2016-04-18 20:29:12 38944
Norie Okana arrives into the office after being led down the hall. Wait. Windows? There were no windows....

...the world is upside down? She actually needs to stop, blink once, then catch up with the roboyouma and softly pushes the door open.

She looks around. "Riventon-san." she says politely. She looks around again and closes her eyes and let's her hair lighten into a purple, aswell as her eyes--- she takes a deep breath. "Sorry. I'm learning not to keep it up if I do not have to." she says softly. "And explaning such things to others is hard when they known you as a blue eyed, shorter black haired girl." she says softly.

She looks to one of the seats--- and gently back to Riventon. He's smiling! That doesn't look right. But this is an overarching problem she's had for the past months herself.

"I'm sorry I wasn't able to stop that white haired man." she says.

"I haven't been in any situations like that." she says.

She sits softly finally.

"You're glad I called?" she blinks. "Why?" she asks. She sounds a little surprised- for some unknown reason.
Takashi Agera 2016-04-18 20:55:33 38950
Riventon nods. "It's okay. You tried to help me. That matters." he says, though he doesn't take a seat. Apparently, Riventon is more of the pacing-talking type, resting his hands behind his back as he does. "A lot of people showed up and tried to stop me. You showed up and -even though you didn't have to - you stood with me. That means that you're smarter than they are. It means you understand things they don't."

"And all of that while you're still struggling yourself - still trying to figure out what's going on, what you are, who you've become." he adds, turning from the windows to look at her. "Even though you have all of this internal turmoil, you were able to see the truth and do what was best in a difficult situation." he adds, smiling again. "That's impressive, Lacrima-san."

"I need people like that. People who, when things aren't easy, stand with me instead of against me. People who aren't opposed to the future I want to create. Peoeple who understand that weakness isn't something to be celebrated. You might not know that you're that sort of person, Lacrima-san. You might not even believe it, or want to believe it. But in the times you've stood with me, in the times I've fought alongside you - you've shown it. And I want to help you believe it too. I want to help you see the strength you have."

"I'm offering you a job, but I'm offering you more than that. Security. A place to hide if the world thinks what you're doing is wrong. Allies to stand by you. Energy to keep you alive. There's dorm rooms here if you need them, too. And you can have my expertise - I can show you about your new power, help you keep it in check maybe."

"All you have to do in return right now is do what you did last night - stand by me."
Lacrima 2016-04-18 21:20:42 38953
Norie Okana nods. "I...would not be here. If I was not considering these things, Riventon-san." she says softly. She says softly. She looks around softly as she sinks into the chair as she seems to become sulky.

"I don't understand much about my power. I met someone who claims to understand... but I'm not feeling she does." she says. "I know a little about my power. Where it comes from- . But most of this has been explained to me in dreams I have." she says.

"I am struggling. It's gotten..... easier." she says. "..after I realized a few things."

She looks up. "That's what I would like. I'd like to learn, more about my power, to better control it." she says.

She looks down and back up. Like she's gathering her thoughts. "I met Sky Jack before. He promised me he'd find a 'cure' for what I am. But now he's telling me... he can't! I met a fox who said that she used to be like me to a degree, and tried to show me ways to drain people subtly-- but.. I am not a very good actor." she says deadpan.

She looks down. "I guess it doesn't matter. I don't care for a cure now..."

She pauses.

"....Riventon-san, I have an important question..." she asks.

"Have you ever... been hit with something that made you question yourself?" she asks. "Someone... hit me with something before. Twice. Actually. Different people. This attack..."

"It feels really good when it first hits." she admits. "I almost feel normal! I can feel things! But then..."

"It's like my entire body is on fire. Like--like I can feel parts of me being stripped away- and it makes me feel scared." she says. "Both times, I had to go to that place... the dark place. The one you and I can 'skip' though. To recuperate. The first time.. it was two days. The second only a few hours. Overnight. But I feel more and more different everytime that happens."

"What is that?" she asks. "Is it something commonplace?"

She blinks. "I apologize." she says waving a hand in front of her face. "My focus wanders because I worry a lot. and I have questions of my own, such as that." she says.

"What I would like to say, is, I would like to help. I want to learn. I belive you're able to help me learn. If it means fighting people like Sky Jack, I guess I don't mind. He's a liar anyways." she says disdainfully.
Takashi Agera 2016-04-18 21:29:08 38956
Riventon frowns. He'd frown if he were Takashi Agera right now, too. "I'm not fond of that boy either." he says, regarding Sky Jack. "I'll help you to understand. Control comes after. You can't manage something until you can understand it. And everyone's power is a little different, so it might take time. It could come easily or difficult. It could be tomorrow or next year. But I like trying to solve puzzles."

"Privately - I don't even need to be hit with an attack like that." he confides. "When I am, it feels like someone's trying to tear me in two - trying to rip me down the middle. But... I sometimes question myself. When I'm alone. But that's not... limited to those like us. 'Normal' people find themselves questioning things all the time." he says, nodding. "That's not unusual. I know I don't much like being ripped apart, though. Nothing that does that to me can be looking for a positive outcome."

"It's one of the ways they try to beat you. The energy in those attacks - it hates the energy that's in both of us, as far as I can tell. Tries to tear it out. They like to pretend like it'd cure you - but I don't want a cure like that." he says, grimacing. "This energy - it's part of who I am. They can't just pull it out and assume I'll end up like them. And more than that... I don't want to be like them. I like my power. Someone very dear to me sacrificed... too much... to give it to me. I'm not going to give it up."

"Subtlety might come with practice. I might be able to help there. We can help each other. That's the key here. I want to help you, and you help me in exchange. It's going to be good for both of us."
Lacrima 2016-04-18 21:47:55 38965
Norie Okana thinks about this and looks down. "I had to come to conclusion that who 'I used to be' is a disguise now. I don't like it very much... but it takes too much energy to keep it up. It's why I was consistently running out. Now...I keep it 'off' when I can afford. Like now." she says. "Or when I'm alone. If someone sees me, I can make them forget."

She looks back up. "Nrg... I dunno if I feel 'torn in two' by those attacks. It feels more like... someone's trying to rip me apart directly." she mutters.

"Right. Subtle for me is... finding random people out of the way... or 'coercing' people out of the way---- then draining them. I guess it's 'loud' since more people have been showing up either during or after my attempts."

Then she sneers a bit. Just a bit. "'Cure'. No. I know that's not it." she says. "I know that isn't 'curing me'. Nothing that tears me apart, turns me into smoke is 'curing me'." she says.

She does listen to Riventon's talk about his power and that someone very dear sacraficed themselves for it. "I'm sorry." she says deadpan. Why did she say that? Maybe because it what's Norie would do. She just shakes her head. "My power came from a pretty necklace I bought in an antique shop." she says. "As I told you before, I think. That power comes from some sort of vampire lord who had to be split apart to defeat him. I know he wanted that power and reveled in it." she says.

"I'm not sure if I'd had taken this if I had a choice, but I did not. All I can do is live with this now." she says.

She nods. "I'll help. I accept. But..."

"What kind of world is it you want, Riventon-san?" she asks. "I've not thought about such things myself. I guess the future isn't pleasent for me to think about because I know I have a lot of it ahead of me now." she grimaces with a half smile.
Takashi Agera 2016-04-18 22:22:21 38973
Riventon nods. "Well, it's important to keep grounding. On what you are. On what you want to be. And if you don't know what that is yet, that's okay. I assume part of your plan - whatever that plan ends up being - is going to involve you staying alive. So you need to continue to drain. And you need to not be swayed by lies from people who don't understand what it's like, harboring this energy inside you."

Riventon nods, when Norie tells the tale. "Well, maybe it's possible to make it easier to seperate you from your charm. You have a moment, at least - a moment where you shifted from one to another. I've had this power within me since birth. And it seems to still be quite a lot like yours - different, of course, because it always is - but also similar. Similar in strength, similar in need. That's why I wanted you here. Because maybe we can also help each other learn more... about each other."

"I want a world where people like you and I are not just accepted... but appreciated. The strength we wield... believe it or not, the world needs it. Because while we may not be entirely human, we're still part human. If you've been to the Dusk Zone - you might've seen some of the real threats. Some of the inhuman threats, the monstrous threats."

"The book Eclipse is looking for - it has the power to destroy the world. We don't want that. But it's also got power. The people best suited to tell the difference between destruction and power are people like us - those who understand what power is, what it means. What it can do." he says, nodding. "I want a world where instead of fighting tooth and nail, people bring such things to me so I can secure them, understand them, use them for good. I do want good things for everyone - it just has to start with me. I'm not an altruist. I think that way lies weakness."

"The people who make their mark on history - the people that found countries, that make legends - they have power, and they're not afraid to use it. And in the end, the world is better for it." he says, nodding."
Lacrima 2016-04-18 22:39:20 38977
Norie Okana nods. "The Dusk Zone? Is that what that place is called?..." she pauses. "Fitting. Yes. The part of it.. wherever I go, does have creatures, but they tend to leave me alone. Either they ignore me or choose to ignore me. Maybe I'm just background decoration to them. Or maybe they know better than to encroach on someone that may be stronger than them. I don't know. I just know my voice doesn't echo there." she says softly.

"Eclipse?" she asks and purses her lips. "I'm not familar. Is that who you --- and I'm going to-- be working for?" she asks.

"Well. Doing good things for gain is still doing good things. Is it not?" she asks. "Why does it make someone who doesn't do it for no gain any better?" she asks.

"I guess maybe I'd had known the answer to that once upon a time but right now It's confusing to me." she says.

"I don't know what you can learn from me, Riventon-san, but I'm more than willing to help with whatever it is you wish. You've given me no reason to 'hate' you, like some of the others- it's in my best intrest right now to play along."

She blinks. "You were always like this?" she blinks once, a little dumbfounded. "You seem better off than me with this power." she says. "On an external level. You're so relaxed... and you have genuine reactions it seems. Sometimes, I react certain ways because it's how I remember I should." she says. "Rather than anything genuine."

"It makes it hard on days like White Day. Or Valentines Day. and I have to act appreciative. Do not get me wrong. I do not 'hate' the feelings, and I actually do like chocolate, and free chocolate is always 'appreciated'." she says. "But I have to 'act' surprised and appreciative to these people because my reaction is otherwise 'oh. free chocolate. thank you.'" she says deadpan.

"It's confusing as I said."

"But... we can talk about that another time. What do I need to do now. Is there paperwork? Some sort of 'doctor's' checkup? I hope I do not need to beg the school for a work referall. They'll never give it to me. Not with my problems as of recent." she says.
Takashi Agera 2016-04-18 23:06:18 38984
Riventon nods. "I think that's what it is, yeah. They see you like they see anyone else from there, and so they're not hostile to you. But if I go there without making my Dark Energy clear, they set upon me like the monsters they are. They're the real danger. But if the 'heroes' got thier way and got rid of all of us, there'd be nobody who could go there and find out what's going on, and prepare. It would be even worse than it is. You can't fight what you don't understand, and... if they drive us out with torches and pitchforks, they're never going to understand what's in there."

"Eclipse is... well, it's a corporate structure. You'll be working for me - for UMBRA - specifically, but Eclipse is like... our parent company. And the other parts of Eclipse are sister companies. In theory, we're supposed to work together - in practice, not so much. Lot of people want to take power for themselves, and the easiest, laziest way is to steal it from someone else. So there's a little bit of infighting, I admit. Still better than being out there. I'd think of UMBRA as family, with the rest of eclipse as distant family. They'll help - but only if their own interests are helped too."

At the talk about reactions, Riventon turns to look out the window. "What I'm about to say is private. Doesn't leave this office. But I'm going to tell you because you might understand a little." he says, before sighing. "Sometimes... I'm not sure which me is the real me. I mean, I've always been like this. Trapped between this world and the Dusk Zone. Ever since I was little. I learned to hide it, too. To pretend to be normal. I still spend a lot of time pretending to be normal. I have a normal name, a normal life, I go to a normal school. And then I'm Riventon. And I think they're both the real me. Not one or the other, but both. Each of them are aspects of who I am. And I can't deny either of them. And that makes things... quite difficult at times, because both sides... sometimes they want different things."

"But I'm commited to this. To Riventon. To the gifts I was born with. I think if one side of me wins out, it's Riventon. One day I won't need the rest, and I can be Riventon to the entire world. But that'll be a while. Someone very close to me... she thinks I need to be 'cured'. I... disagree."

"So I understand a little bit, about emotions, about how they affect you. I react differently to things as Riventon. And if I let the wrong emotions get the better of me, I slip - one way, or another. It's not easy. But it's the lot I was given in life. It's the price I have to pay. It's a high price, but for a great power. I'm going to keep paying it until I can't anymore. Hopefully, by then, I'll have achieved all I wanted."

Then Riventon pulls a drawer out of his desk and slides a contract across the table, finally sitting down. "Just put the data here. Other folks' will do the ground work, check your references, get you and ID card and a phone. The only referral you need..." Riventon says, putting his hand to his chest "is mine."
Lacrima 2016-04-18 23:26:40 38992
Norie Okana looks at the contract. Something the power she has didn't give her. A contract is a choice. You can sign it, or you cannot. For just a scant moment she actually sits there. She's /enjoying/ thinking about this choice. She gets to decide. Not the power... not Riventon. It's a very very rare moment for her and she wants to savor it.

Oh, she's going to sign it. But for a moment she just wants to bask in the indecision of it all. It's a very strange sensation to find comfort in.

Then she blinks and frowns. "I feel like that a lot, Riventon-san. I didn't use to. I liked to dance... and.. read... and do things with my brother. Then I got the necklace. And I got horribly sick for a week. Then I just... got well suddenly. Or so I thought. I woke up the next day and attacked my brother. I drained him. He remembers." she says. "Well. He does. But he doesn't. He takes the long way downstairs now. He cancels plans on me. He seems uneasy around me and I don't think he actually remembers why. Then my friends started becoming my targets and I had to leave them. I had to leave my dancing." she says.

She frowns. "Cure..." she says. "Why are some of these people so obsessed with that?" she asks. She says. "You don't seem 'sick' to me." she says as she purses her lips.

"Or maybe it's a thing they say so they can sleep at night? They feel better about themselves? That's why I think Sky Jack says it..."

Then she taps the pen to her bottom lip. "So..." she says. "It isn't just me then, too... with... my emotions being out of whack...?" she asks. "That's comforting, in it's own ways. Maybe it means. It's just how I am now.. I guess...I'll just learn to deal with it eventually." she says.

She finally looks back down to the contract. "Oh. Right. I need to. Actually fill this out."

She begins doing just that.
Takashi Agera 2016-04-18 23:47:06 38994
Riventon shakes his head. "I think they don't understand. It's easy for me to get angry about it, when we're fighting. But... limited minds, you know? That's what they are. They fear what they don't understand. To them, we're like sharks, or bears, or something. Dangerous. And they don't understand why we do what we do. If you don't bother the bear, the bear won't bother you?" he says, with a shrug. "Or maybe we're more like vampires, classical vampires. Because we take their energy, and that worries them. But I've never killed anyone. You probably haven't either. We're doing what we have to do."

"When they say 'cure' what they mean is, they want to make us like them. Weak, reliant on others to pull us out of jams. Hell, probably not even like them - like the normal people walking around, oblivious to the true world you and I see."

"You do learn to deal with it. You learn to channel it, too. Those emotions - they can give you strength. That's why I seem to upset when I'm fighting. That anger... I can feel it give me strength, too. When I hate them, I can hit them harder. I can call on more power. That's also something they don't understand. Maybe they think I'm like that all the time. That I don't have friends, that I'm twisted. They'd be surprised to know the truth. I have people I care about, too. They're part of the reason I'm out there like that. I need to know my experiments will work because a lot is hinging on them. I just... have to factor in annoyances, now. I usually do, too. Last night, I knew they'd be there. I was counting on it. Some of our allies in Eclipse did some work while we kept the heroes occupied."

"I'm sure you can dance again someday, Okana-san. It might be a new dance, and it might be new friends, but... one of the reasons I want to understand your power, my power... is so that we can use it to get what we want. If people weren't afraid of you - if people understood why you stole energy - or even if you never had to because we had a supply - it'd be easier for you to be Norie, easier for you to go back to that life." he adds, as she fills out the paperwork. "One day we'll have the power to acheive our dreams, Okana-san."
Lacrima 2016-04-19 00:02:12 38995
Norie Okana ohs! "That's how I feel about it! I mean. I'd rather not hurt people and drain them, but I /need/ to- and all I do is make them tired and they go to sleep and wake up still tired for a day! That's it! What's worse is---"

"When I starve myself I /do/ get dangerous enough to kill people and I've come close to it!" she says. "I just... become like an animal-- like those things that were attracted by your machine. I can't remember what I do when I'm like that. So it's better to just let me feed while I can control it, you know!?" she says.

"But most people just frown at me hard.. say I should just drain 'bad people'. I really don't particularly have a choice when I need to 'feed'. You know? Like back to your bear.. or shark anaology-- a bear doesn't ignore a wild pig because the pig didn't do anything wrong. The only difference is that I just put the pig to sleep for a little instead of evicerating it." she says.

"No---I've never killed anyone Riventon-san." she says as she looks down. "As I've said. I've come close. But I wasn't in control. It used to be hard, when I was foolish.. keeping 'Norie' up all the time. It was getting to be I'd need to drain four people every other day." she says. "And that'd increase every month." she says.

"I'm back down to two a week-- with dropping 'Norie' when I'm able--- though I do need more when I expend energy purposely." she says.

She finishes filling out the paper and slides the contract back to Riventon politely.

"I hope it is easier for me to be who I wanna be." she says with a muted smile. "Someday. For now--- the fact there's some help here is comforting." she says. "--of course. I'll be helping back. That's the deal." she pauses.

"..I mean the other things are nice too. I'll have some place to go if I can't go home..." she says softly. "Which has been a worry of mine." she admits softly.
Takashi Agera 2016-04-19 01:14:29 39002
Riventon nods understandably. "Believe me, you're talking to one of the few people in the world who understands you." he says, quietly. "People are dumb. They don't do things right. They don't think things through. I live in a world of science and understanding and experimentation. That's why I can look at this with a critical eye."

"We'll see if we can't source you enough energy to be able to keep your disguise up more, though." he muses. "Just have to build you up a surplus, is all." he says with a smile. There's a wicked dangerousness to that smile. "I'm happy to help you."

Riventon takes the contract and smiles. "You made a good decision. For yourself, for everyone else. Like I said, it'll take some time - but we should be able to get your paperwork through. I'll put a rush on it. Then you'll get an Eclipse phone. It can dial numbers normal phones cannot - and you'll learn which ones." he adds. "Soon you'll be known as one of us, and if anyone does show up to make trouble, you'll be able to call up trouble of your own."

"If you can... try to keep at least your family. Trust me. I don't have one, and that makes things hard." he says, with a strange, sad, very out-of-place look. "Just... they're important, and... I'd hate to see someone who has a family throw it away." he says, putting the paper in the desk. "You can expect a call in a few days."
Lacrima 2016-04-19 01:17:49 39004
Norie Okana softly nods. "A few days..okay..."

She looks down to her necklace. "This stores energy. It what lets me 'keep' a surplus. It helps a little. I don't like drawing attenion to it. For reasons." she says softly.

She stands up and nods. "It's... why I haven't run away, honestly, Riventon-san. I don't want to loose my family." she offers softly. "I will do my best." she says softly.

She'll eventually find her way back out-- throwing up her guise again as she makes it out the door. Homeward bound it seems!