The Garden of Time


Precia Testarossa wants to bring her daughter back from the dead. She gets exactly what she wants. The end of the Jewel Seed arc! (Caution: Cthulhu-styled awfulness.)

Date: 2018-02-10
Pose Count: 89
Nanoha Takamachi 2018-02-10 21:20:42 88612
If you we're on Virtue's 'HeartNET', you saw the call for assistance. If you replied, you we're told to meet out in a place in the park, where someone could help get them to wherever Precia bases herself. IF you know Nanoha and are not a member of Virtue, you we're asked for assistance by her either via text or device and we're also told to meet in the park at the same area. (Riventon, not being a friend, still fits into this group because he's a friend of Fate-chan's.). Alternatively, things like 'Hey, civilization might get en-gulfed into Cthulhu hell or something and Earth could be a dead planet overnight' tends to get around and you ended up here through the grapevine.

Nanoha Takamachi is pacing. She looks tired and ragged but managed to regain a better deal of the energy she spent Duel'ing with Fate. Mostly it's the worry now. And the anger. Intense, justified anger at Fate's mom, Precia Testarossa. It isn't wrath. She doesn't want to /kill her/ but she want's /answers/ and... is there even a space jail on Earth!? No. She doesn't think so. Maybe the TSAB have some sort of facility? She remembers reading something about that and that's where they were keeping that crazy serial killer mage right?

Regardless- she's waiting and watching and when people show up, she tries to smile and wave and everyone gets a bright hello or a nod-- or at least a respectful look of presence in the cases of people she doesn't know too well or Riventon for example.

"Okay. Um." she says. "Arf says--oh! Arf is. Fate's familiar! She's gonna show us how to get to this place called 'The Garden of Time'. And that. It's gonna probably be well defended." she says.

"So. We're gonna go in and-- try to either bring Fate's mo back with us- or at least get the Jewel Seeds from her before she can open the door to Al-Hazard." she eyes Arf who is ostensibly standing nearby now and looks to the others. "Here we go..." she says.

Arf will open the portal.

It's time to go to the Garden of Time for what she hopes will be a successful mission.

Nanoha Takamachi looks SUPER Determined. Raising Heart also glints determinedly in her hands.
Kokoro Akakuma 2018-02-10 21:26:41 88613
    Dengeki Shoujo is here. And she's already crackling a little, tiny little arcs dancing along her body here and there. It's nowhere near the rippling voltage right after Precia's appearance the day before, but it's definitely a sign of how worked up she is. "I ain't makin' any promises about how she comes out of this," the hammer girl replies, already gripping that weapon of hers tightly. She's got it slung over her shoulder, held one-handed, but with her strength that might as well be 'at the ready'.

    "...but before we start, I... I got a request. I wanna talk to her. Fate's mom, I mean. I got a few things to get off my chest."
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-10 21:29:25 88614
Throughout all of this, Rashmi has stayed at Nanoha's side. This is *not* something she had ever intended to take a break on, and she had reserves she needed to rebuild too. Thus, the redhead fully understands the determination in Nanoha's eyes, and echoes it. So when the portal opens, she already has her Flier Fin active -- who knows what gravity might be like on the other side, after all -- and floats through, touching Kokoro's shoulder on the other side. "We'll try, but we can't make any promises. If this al-Hazard thing is as bad as it sounds, every moment may count."
Koji Silvia 2018-02-10 21:31:21 88615
Even when waiting for the Final Battle, there should always be time for a snack!

Well, at least in the mind of one Koji Silvia.

While Nanoha was getting everything set up on the Virtue network, the young man ended up going to a conbini, not even bothring to henshin back to his civilian form to pick things out. No time, and when he was asked, he just mentioned something about going to a part time job that required cosplay. Back almost as quickly as he left, he's got bags with Onigiri, Nikuman, and even some fresh-made Karaage on one side... and bottled tea, coffee drinks, and a couple sodas in the other. These items are distributed to those who'd been dueling first, and then to the others. But as people begin to show up, he wolfs down his own small share of things, and wipes his mouth while listening in.

This whole time, Tyrfing has been fairly silent on the whole topic... in fact, he's been quiet ever since El-Hazard was mentioned, but the Device seems just as ready to throw down as the pair are checking up on Fate to make sure she's going to be up for what's to come, and showing her that even though they've been antagonists, that's the past.
Mamoru Chiba 2018-02-10 21:35:44 88616
There's a golden flash of light from behind Kokoro just as she's talking, and then Mamoru Chiba's voice says a little flatly as he hears the last of what she says, "Probably have to get in line. Think we all have at least a few words for her. Or possibly words shaped like fists. Or words with fists attached. Takamachi-san's got first crack, though."

He's in his Prince Endymion armor and he looks Determined, and by the time he's talking he's letting go of Kunzite, with whom he appeared. "Before we go, I just want to tell you all-- I'm sorry I haven't been around. And I'll help as much as I can, but please don't rely on my healing right now, or-- or on my henshin. I can keep myself out of trouble, so don't worry about me, but don't rely on me."

That cost a lot to say, it's clear from his defensive posture and behind ocean blue eyes, but it was necessary-- and with that, he steps through Arf's portal with the others.
Takashi Agera 2018-02-10 21:37:42 88617
Riventon is here, too - after making sure Fate was in as good hands as possible he's prepared for this. And uncharacteristically, he's quiet - that and the look on his face indicates how seriously he's taking this - Dealing with Precia Testarossa is one thing he's not about to half ass.

After all, not only was she a serious threat, but the callous way she had talked to Fate had made the stakes incredibly personal to him.

Perhaps out of courtesy, he gives the others a wide enough space whenever possible that they don't suffer the negative effects of being near him - since he's radiating Dark Energy. Even Mamoru gets a curt not rather than snark.
Kazuo Takeba 2018-02-10 21:38:22 88618
Kunzite says nothing, in the wake of Endymion's words; but he bows gravely to Nanoha --

(It isn't the first time that Kunzite's met Nanoha. It may be the first time that shadow monsters haven't been involved. Unless Precia counts.)

(Precia probably counts.)

-- then inclines his head to Rashmi and Koji. And, after a moment of studying him, to Riventon.
Mikoto Nakajima 2018-02-10 21:42:10 88619
        (~"Emergency assistance request broadcast, Meister. Known sender."~)

Mikoto pauses, looking up from her homework, to view the message - displayed with a shot of Nanoha's face alongside, identifying the sender. The girl nods and sets her pen down, tucking the papers into her textbook and closing it, then stands and stretches. "Right then," she answers. "Best timing ever, kiddo, I was getting bored as heck with this stuff anyway."

She takes hold of the Device, plucking the brooch-like storage form from her school uniform blouse, and light swirls around her as familiar spell-glyphs replace her garments with her Barrier Jacket. "Mist Shroud," she orders the Device, and her form takes on a misty, indistinct look, to disguise her from any mundane observers as she ducks straight out the dorm-room window to take flight.

Hagane speeds rapidly across the city, going up and over and around buildings at an impressive rate of speed (though she's met faster flyers, including Fate herself). It isn't long at all before she spots the gathering of costumed fighters and swoops down towards them, the hurried landing leaving boot-shaped divots in the asphalt of the street that she quickly pulls herself out of to join the crowd.

Faces she recognizes get a nod of acknowledgement and a brief wave, a few (Rashmi, Koji, and Kunzite, mostly) get a "Hello, long time no see". Riventon gets a steady look, before she turns away, silently, to the portal. Those familiar with her fighting style can pick out the Flickers of light orbiting above her, more and more of them gathering as she readies herself for the fight to come.
Kokoro Akakuma 2018-02-10 21:43:22 88620
    "Takamachi's got first dibs, yeah," Kokoro replies over her shoulder to Endymion. "But I ain't just some punk who's ticked off on Fate's behalf." She turns to look straight ahead, continuing forward a step or two before finally adding, "...I got somethin' to say to her as a girl who lost a mom," in a softer voice.
Kukai Souma 2018-02-10 21:43:53 88621
It wasn't exactly what Kukai had planned to do today, but when an emergency call like this goes out across HeartNET you drop whatever else you were doing, make whatever excuses you need to, and you go. Planet level threats require those who've sworn themselves to protect people to go, because it's a threat unlike everything else.

So, after a few minutes, Sky Jack arrives near the park at the meeting place, seeing a large group of gathering people. Tall lightning girl he barely knows, Rashmi, Nanoha, Prince Earth.. Riventon. Jack makes a point to land on the other side of the group from Riventon. He's expecting something at some point from him after their last major encounter, but he's not going to make it easy for him. Even if he was amazingly wrong about one of the major reasons he did it. Which is a good reason to be mad at Nanoha, too, but that can come so much later. Right now, things. "Hello everyone. Am I on time?"
Fate T. Waldia 2018-02-10 21:53:05 88622
    Fate is... In bad condition. Not physically, but emotionally. Any attempts to check on the girl have been met with stone silence as she remains in her shattered catatonic state.
    Arf is, naturally, more than worried for her master.
    The Familiar, in her human form, is a tall woman with red hair, wolf ears, a red tail, and belly-baring outfit for ease of movement in combat.
    And she is pacing like a penned beast. Her ears are pinned back and she is blatantly agitated, for many reasons. But now with things as they are she has no choice but to work with Nanoha and the others to stop Precia's madness. For Fate's sake, if anything.
    "Fate was usually the one that transported us to the Garden of Time, but I was able to memorize the coordinates in dimensional space." She says opening the portal with some effort. "Fate's moth... No, that woman... That woman is insane... I should have stopped her... I should have done something for Fate when I had the chance but..." She hesitates. "... Now it's come to this..." She mutters as people begin to file through.

    The other side... In the Garden of time...

    The portal opens into a stone chamber, crumbling pillars framing a worn path leading to a set of stairs and a grand but ancient set of stone doors.
    The entirety of the path from the portal, to the doorway is dominated by large figures of steel and stone, armored golems, each looking like ancient knights of old, and bearing swords, shields, spears axes, maces... All of them stare down the intruders to their master's sanctuary, the slatted 'eyes' of helmets and visors glow bright red as they spot the arrival and understand one thing...
    Intruders...
    In that instant they charge, weapons raised, ready to strike and intent to kill. Arf shifts into her great wolf form, and with a snarl she tackles one massive machine warrior to the ground and rips its throat out with her teeth, pulling vital wires and machinery from the delicate spot and felling it. But...
    They are numerous, and one down doesn't stop the wave that suddenly assails the invaders without any mercy in their mechanical hearts.
Takashi Agera 2018-02-10 22:05:01 88623
Riventon channels dark energy into his hands, knocking over a Golem and putting a hole through it with a surge of murderous intent.

Axion pings. "Tons of energy sources in this room - the obvious, really - but there's another one further in, isolated. Bigger. I bet it's part of her plan." He notes, and two small orbs detach from his device, orbiting around him, and shooting bolts of energy of their own towards some of the creatures.

"Whatever it is she probably doesn't want or need me messing with it." And the tone of his voice indicates he intends to do just that. Riventon surges energy towards the golems in his way, heading to somewhere distinctly different than Precia's personal sanctum. The others can fight these golems and her, but when it comes to crazy rituals and mad magiscience, well, best to let the expert work there.
Nanoha Takamachi 2018-02-10 22:06:54 88624
Nanoha Takamachi makes it to the other side and she eyes the imposing and large stone pathway to the large door and she begins to walk forward with Raising Heart held close to her chest. "This is... dimensional space? Weird..." she says.

Oh.. oh those aren't lights. Those are eyes. On various sized large creations.

"Raising Heart...."

< Divine Shooter > calls out the device as an array of magenta orbs form around her, and they begin lancing out for the constructs guarding this hallway.

"Divine Shooter!" she calls out.

"We have to move forward...." she says with wide eyes. She eyes Riventon.

"Wait, Riv---" but he's gone and determined.

She thinks 'gee, you better not get yourself killed', but she turns back to the combat, magenta orbs exploding outward.

Riventon can handle himself, hopefully.
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-10 22:11:38 88625
<< SOLAR SHIELD >> Nicomachea says, and a gleaming ball of sun-colored transparent mana forms around Rashmi as she flies up and back. Looking at Nanoha as the younger girl says they need to move forward, the redhead nods once, and flies toward the center of the melee.

*bing!* << RED SHIFT >>

The barrier explodes outwards, pushing at the massed front line, creating a divot for the massed mahou to drive into... But an ax comes from an unexpected angle, and with a cry of pain the redhead is batted into the side of an outcropping of crystal.
Koji Silvia 2018-02-10 22:14:41 88626
"Nanoha! Save your power for Precia. We've got this!", Koji calls out as he moves past her, and ducks under one of those orbs and pushes forwards towards the Golems.

Orders, Koji?

"Deploy. Bits Eins through Achtzen. Rapid Barret formation."

Ja Wohl!

In response to the young male mage's commands, eighteen of those jewel-shaped Bits of his emerge from his person, ejecting from the sheathed blade on his back and from around his legs and under the coat. Sweeping his hand up in front of him, Koji begins moving them like tugging on the strings of a puppet, and his Bits begin to methodically and sweepingly assault the corridor in a withering barrage of fire.

Three of them break off for a moment to form blades and lance through the one that axed Rashmi, the tinny voice of Tyrfing from a distance saying to Rashmi, Watch yourself, girl. And then they resume position.

Total and intense focus of the young man as he attempts to use Rashmi's first push to begin digging the others a corridor to use to go further in. But doing this is just making room for the bigger ones to come at them... and when they do, he just gives that classic 'Villain with Glasses' smile...

...Too bad he's not wearing his glasses...
Mamoru Chiba 2018-02-10 22:19:59 88627
"You too, huh?" Endymion asks Kokoro with wry understanding-- but someone said 'eyes' and oh wow that's a lot of golems. He looks considerably relieved when Arf tears one's guts out and they're mechanical, then somewhat guilty when he abruptly glances in Tyrfing's direction, drawing his sword anyway. SHINNNNNG. It's a shiny beautiful watered-steel thing of ancient design, roughly the size of a bastard sword, and it's why he's not too broken up about not having access to a lot of power anymore:

The guy does in fact still move like a fighter, trained by a still better fighter. "So they're trying to kill us-- can anyone tell if we should be disabling instead of killing them?" But then Rashmi's hurt, clonked against crystal, and he grimaces. "Kuso! Rashmi-chan, you gotta tell them not to axe you any questions--"

And then whoo, there we go; somehow, even without empathy and his extended senses, Endymion just knows where Kunzite is, and he starts plowing through the sharpest-looking things to clear the way for the stronger people to have a go at the big things.
Precia Testarossa 2018-02-10 22:23:05 88628
    Preca Testarossa has been busy working within a big heavy panel, connected to a big heavy tube that contains the body of Alicia Testarossa. Her daughter. Alica Testarossa looks like Fate. But this is no surprise, as Fate was a clone. Precia is working madly.

    She can hear alarms. They made it here. It was Riventon. Or Arf. That helped them she knows it. She doesn't care. She's almost done. Jewel Seeds sit in tiny capsules around the top of the tube. Not quite connected to it, but close enough to be. They're all active now- glimmering in their tiny capsules.

    What could they, out there, properly comprehened about what she's trying to do? They're probably still upset at the feelings of a persona non grata like Fate.
Kukai Souma 2018-02-10 22:23:24 88629
Sky Jack watches Riventon fly off past the knights with a note of nervous energy flying through him, more expectant of the piper wanting payment from surprise now, even as the mechanical forms charge at the group. Jack lets out a war cry, a happy, cheerful sound, and punts a suddenly-appearing soccer ball towards the leading edge of the attackers, the ball appearing, being charged with electrical energy and powerful force, connecting with one of the knights, transferring all of that energy into it, and vanishing, another one and another one following them up as the knights approach. "All right people, we don't have time for this - don't let them keep us back for long!"

Jack is in his element, fighting alongside a team and directing the flow of combat, funnelling the attackers towards the front line by bouncing powerful soccer balls off any knight or monster that dares to try to get to one side or another...
Kokoro Akakuma 2018-02-10 22:27:00 88631
    "'Too'...?" Kokoro does finally stop moving, just briefly. Endymion gets another momentary glimpse at a violet eye, turned over her shoulder. "...yeah. Me too." That's all she has to say on the subject. Because they've gone through at last, and Kokoro shifts the hammer on her shoulder, just slightly. Even before the statues all wake up, something about them sets her on edge. So when they do move, when crimson 'eyes' turn on the arriving group, her reaction is simple.

    "Tch, ain't none of you big enough to be a decent scrap," she says, and slings her hammer off her shoulder. "Maybe that huge one back there's worth somethin'."

    And with a whipping whirl, Dengeki Shoujo whips her hammer around herself and lunges straight into the crowd - swinging the massive weapon around herself in an attempt to clear a path to the nearest of the exceptionally-large defenders.
Kazuo Takeba 2018-02-10 22:30:02 88632
Kunzite does not draw his own sword, per se. It simply manifests in his hand, as these things do ... and then the blade floods black, and he catches the edge of his cape in his other hand. Both channels for his power, conserving his strength as much as possible.

His focus isn't on carving his way through the golems. It's on covering Endymion, and letting Endymion concentrate on carving his way through the golems -- deflecting blows from sword or spear, diffusing the impact of a mace so that it shoves him back bodily rather than crushing his shoulder or skull. Not that Kunzite's shy of striking when he sees an opening, either. And letting that darkness covering his blade give a sudden coruscating flare as he steals the animating energy of each golem whose armor he manages to find a chink in. His own smile shows, sudden and feral and sharp, each time one of Sky Jack's strikes pushes one of the attackers toward him, or one of the Bits distracts an armored thing from Endymion's approach. Presumably the metallic crashings of drained armor to the ground signal disablings, since Endymion mentioned. Well. Probably.
Mikoto Nakajima 2018-02-10 22:31:07 88633
        (~"Panzershiff!"~) Carnwennan deploys the shield spell automatically as it analyzes the Garden's defenses, taking in the golems and picking out the most dangerous to highlight them in its Master's vision.

"Well, she certainly did roll out the red carpet for us, didn't she?" the girl remarks, raising her blade to salute before dashing out into the fight. The clear space Rashmi created gives Mikoto some room to maneuver, and she takes advantage of it. She barrels into a phalanx of golems, sword flashing as she swings, pushing past the first ones and into the middle of the crowd.

Some might think that gives them the advantage over her, but that does not count upon the magic she uses far more freely than the enchanted blade. As the golems crowd around her, flickers of light zoom in, slicing at weapons and hands and sensors. The mahou herself makes for a matching whirlwind, the slender blade whipping expertly about as she systematically dismantles the golems with blade and light-dart.

"Lovely hospitality, don't you think, old bean?" she calls over to Kokoro in a faux British accent as she catches sight of another fighter carving their way through the horde. "Fine place for a picnic, this Garden, hmm?"
Fate T. Waldia 2018-02-10 22:36:00 88634
    In an instant the entryway is a mass of battle and chaos. The golems surge forward with weapons drawn intent to kill. The magical heroes make their thrust. Indomitable wills meet unyielding steel as mahou and machine clash, Devices ringing out with cast spells and swords and soccer balls crash into armor and shield.
    It's rough going, but with the aid of Rashmi's initial push that the attackers are able to drive a spike of Koji, Mamoru, Kunzite, and Kokoro into the defensive wall while Riventon darts off to the darker and unknown underbelly of the Garden of Time.
    Many golems fall in the battle, battered, sucked dry of their energy, pelted by pink blasts or BATTERED ASIDE, though they do their best to inflict as much damage as they possibly can for the initial wave, some already even moving in to capitalize against an injured Rashmi in the heat of the blitz. It is as Kokoro challenges the largest of the golems that a spell circle appears in the air above the doorway, and from it drops the largest machine anyone has ever seen.
    A bulk of armor, blades, and cannons, the armored monstrous dark knight that drops through to the chamber is no less than three stories tall, and brings all of its weapons to bear down in a flurry of blades, and magical cannonfire, intent to let no one pass.
Nanoha Takamachi 2018-02-10 22:45:44 88635
Nanoha Takamachi is told to stand down and save her power. She needs to agree there. She used a /LOT/ of energy Dueling Fate. If.. if she knew it was going to end like /this/. She wouldn't had used all she could. B-...but. It got Fate-chan away from that. For now.

Right? So that was worth it.

So instead, Nanoha switches to a lower power spell as a golem comes flying at her.

< Strike Smasher > calls out Raising Heart as Nanoha raises her palm, firing a beam of magenta mana out from her hand. "Strike Smasher!" she calls out, the beam slamming out and catching it, sending it flying back with enough force.

She does this a few times, mostly playing keep away with herself.

But then theres...

"....Oh that's... that's a problem!" she calls out. Though it isn't worry, it's determination.

She raises her staff. She's preparing something big. But it'll take a moment. And use energy. Maybe.. maybe Dengeki-chan down there can slam it. She tries to keep track of everyone, but it's chaos- as she prepares her spell.
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-10 22:50:28 88636
<< SOLAR SHIELD >> Nicomachea calls, another bubble of mana enveloping Rashmi as she pushes herself away from the spiky crater she's managed to create, pressing the bruise over her spine and feeling -- for a moment, at least -- like an old woman. Then of course there's a golem coming her way, and instead of shoving at this one the redhead decides to open a gap, pelting the attacking creature with speedy, homing balls of golden light. "I'm pretty sure they're just machines," she calls as she passes Endymion, and pauses in thought.

The Prince is worried he won't be as effective? Well.

Time to fix that.

"Nicomachea! Endymion, Boost Up!"

*bing!* << STRIKE BOOST UP >> the book answers, a ribbon of runed light slithering from between its pages and wrapping around Endymion's wrist. The warmth of sunlight on skin radiates from the band, bringing confidence and strength to the graceful knight.
Koji Silvia 2018-02-10 22:57:43 88638
Even as Koji passes by Nanoha, moving his way forwards slowly as his hands continues to dance in the air, he takes a moment to smile at her and says, "I'll bet your mom's going to have fresh cakes ready for us by the time we're done with this. Bet Fate will like those, won't she?"

Attempting to bolster the young girl's spirits as he sees the larger mecha and starts getting sensor data on the rest of the golems from his Bits. Mouth going into a line, he then takes a breath and starts calling out...

"Sky Jack, focus on the right side, I'll keep on the left. Keep the lane clear for the forward team!"

Then, "Prince Endymion, Nakajima-Sama, break around and flank the big one to draw attention of it's support weapons. Kunzite-sama, see if you can drain off some of it's power to weaken it."

All of this, and he still continues to keep up his assault on the golems that continue to infest the hallway, "Dengeki... I'm giving you a platform for a big leap!"

As he says it, three of his bits fly forwards of the hammer-wielding hero, and form a triangular plate for her to step on, presumably to catapult her up to the heights necessary to smash the biggest golem in the face!
Mikoto Nakajima 2018-02-10 23:01:57 88640
Mikoto pauses in her stride, casually batting away a minor golem, barely even noticing a blow from another, as she looks up at the new arrival... and up... and up... and up. "Well," she says, dropping the mock accent. "I suppose it's time for tea, as in teamwork." She rolls her shoulders, looks it over again...

And then turns, her gaze falling on Dengeki Shojou and her wonderful hammer. "You know," she calls, "Some things just demand a blunt instrument. If this isn't one of them... well, there's very little that appreciates a practical lesson on Newton's Laws." She bats away another golem, casually slicing its arm off, then waves her hand in a simple 'after you' gesture.

Noticing Tyrfing's bits providing Kokoro a platform, she smiles and steps forward, carving a way over to join the fun. She sets herself with her back to the girl with the hammer, flickers swirling about her, and grins defiantly. Blade in one hand, she holds out the other in another unmistakeable gesture: Come And Get Some.

The golems do so.

Not a single one gets past her to interrupt Dengeki Shojou's parlay with the Big Lug, though Hagane's Barrier Jacket is scorched and torn in several places by the time the chaos around her clears.
Kukai Souma 2018-02-10 23:07:33 88641
Sky Jack sees the flying bits on the other side of the passageway and hears Tyrfing's call. "Right side? Gotcha! I'll keep it clear! Make sure to give the front room to get around behind the big guy if they need it!" Jack is still focusing on knocking out the charging, flying knights, applying his skateboard in both hands every so often when he really needs it and something slips by. It's not the most damage, but it's keeping his side of the route occupied.

Jack sees the bits flying forward towards Kokoro and for a moment wishes he could do something similar with his skateboard. The germ of an idea comes to mind, but how he'd even manage it escapes him, since the vast amount of his mental processing is occupied by a mindless killing machine trying to put a sword through him.
Mamoru Chiba 2018-02-10 23:20:37 88642
Aware of Kunzite, attempting to be aware of everything else-- without the sense he relies on the most, his others have gotten a little sharper, but there is still lag, and his heart's beating fast, and the few times something nearly gets through to him are adrenaline shots-- but Endymion is alive in this fight, natural human athletics and trained skill and the best backup anyone could ever ask for replacing 'magic' in his wheelhouse.

Rashmi's golden light wraps around his wrist and Endymion's momentarily distracted, which results in a golem falling to pieces right next to him as Kunzite covers again, and when his next swordstrike slices through a golem like butter he calls out, "You should bottle these!" cheerily to the sunny mage.

Ah. Tyrfing wants him to distract. Uh. Well. Okay. Okay. To help distract-- and for Kunzite to help debuff--

Well. The prince can certainly give it a shot. He's got ONE-- no. No. Two. Two things he can do. He makes room for Kunzite to go past and around him to start the drain at the back as soon as Hagane starts going crazy on it on the other side, and then the Crown Prince of Earth yells upward, "HEY UGLY! PICK ON SOMEONE YOUR OWN SIZE! I'M A BIG BAD MAGE AND I'M GOING TO CAST A SPELL ON YOU!" This as he's carefully holding his blade by the blade up over his shoulder, sleeve pulled over his palm. He's going to throw it. The idiot is going to throw it.

"Ita sedete retro laxeteque, ridebus dum concides!" he yells, and hurls the sword end over end over end over end like it's a throwing hatchet, and Rashmi's golden support makes it sure look like that suddenly magicked blade is actually the result of this 'spell', right, and then because he's feeling like he's useful right now, he follows up the motion by whirling like he's an Olympian discus thrower and throws a red lightning-trailing rose] straight at its... ear... thing. Ear. Yes.

Luckily Kokoro is following all this up with being a lot louder. Hopefully. Oh he hopes. Endymion steps back into the shadows as he feels his henshin start to falter.
Kokoro Akakuma 2018-02-10 23:23:00 88643
    Smash, step, swing, step, slam. Dengeki Shoujo has picked her target, and she's not going to let some paltry thing like 'several other golems' keep her from it. An axe nicks her arm, a bullet grazes her cheek. All expected, all part of wading through a mass of enemies.

    That huge one, though, that's new. And big enough that halfway through a swing at her original target, the thunder girl stops cold. "...well ain't that a big one." She quickly whips her hammer around to parry an attack from her original target, about the same moment the huge one cuts loose - and all she can do after that is to shield herself with hammer and arms, gritting her teeth and weathering. By the time the flurry ends, there's a fair few more cuts and scrapes, including a few on her sides.

    But look at that. She's grinning.

    "...yeah, you're just about big enough."

    Lightning crackles as Kokoro steps past Mikoto, giving the girl a glance, and a brief nod. That's good. It'll let her focus. So, the crimson girl lowers her shoulder. And then there is a straight-ahead bull charge, full speed and full strength. "That suits me just fine, Koji... Oi! Big guy!" The instant the massive golem actually looks her way, she leaps, combining that strength of hers with Koji and Tyrfing's bits for a powerful launch. She doesn't particularly need to get above it; head height will more than do. What's more important is that she gives herself momentum. Because she can combine that with a mean swing, with a charged-up hammer, for one nasty hit right in the face - or what passes for one - right around the same moment Endymion's rose and 'spell' are coming in.
Fate T. Waldia 2018-02-10 23:37:55 88645
    Though the golems are numerous, theya re destroyed in droves. But for every one that falls it seems as though another two or three are teleported into the chamber to take their place, making the opening push into a battle of attrition that the Garden of Time's defenses plans to continue throwing bodies at until there are no golems left or the attackers are dead.
    Though they give their all for their queen, machines are felled left and right, the large one may just turn the tide of battle if not defeated.
    Fortunately... The assault force against the Garden of Time has Kokoro Akakuma with them. The golems take Mikoto's bait and Sky Jack holds his end of the fight, and a path is quickly formed for Dengeki Shoujo with Tyrfing's bits. As it makes to strike back, a rose embeds solidly and deeply in the side of its head, its retaliatory swing thrown off course and presenting the hammer girl with the opening she needs. She leaps... She strikes...
    There's a tremendous CRASH of metal on metal as that great hammer slams into the golem's face plate. Metal groans as unstoppable force collides with immoveable object, and the giant golem's armor buckles. With a crumpling sound it dents. The dent deepens, deeper, deeper, yet deeper... Before that impressive machine's armor holds and stands, battered but firm against Dengeki Shoujo for a thrilling moment of horror. Has she failed?

    Elsewhere...

    Elsewhere someone watches. A hologram screen projects onto the nearest wall, Arf's eyes transmitting her surroundings to the cracked golden medallion resting limply in Fate Testarossa's hand. She watches with listless, distant, eyes, until that hammer collides. Slowly, she stirs. Slowly she realizes what she is seeing. The others have made their assault on the Garden of Time. They'll be facing off against her mother.
    Her mother...
    To the end, mother never smiled at me... She thinks to herself. I wanted to live... Because I wanted mother to accept me...
    Fate sits up, and looks to the screen. The sea of golems. The faces of those trying to push past them.
    No matter how often she told me I wasn't good enough... No matter what bad things she did to me... I just wanted her to smile at me... Even though she's so clearly abandoned me now I'm still clinging to her... I probably made Arf so sad, since I never listened to anything she had to say... I probably made Takashi so worried because I would never talk...
    Scarlet eyes lock onto the screen as Nanoha's face flashes upon it, determined yet worried.
    That girl, Nanoha, who I've fought again and again, and who called my name countless times.
    Tears roll down the girl's cheeks as feeling returns to her body and the crushing despair begins to bleed away with them.
    I thought that if mother's love was impossible I might as well stop living... I can't just throw away everything I've done up until now. But I can't run away either.
    In her hand she clasps her Device, the golden medallion shifting to the cracked and battered form of the black axe in her grasp without prompt.
    [GET SET.] The axe chimes, and her eyes widen.
    "That's right... You've always been at my side..." She whispers to her faithful Device. "We can't just let things end like this, right?"
    [NO SIR.]
    In a flare of golen light the Device's damage vanishes and Fate's Barrier Jacket envelopes her body as she stands.
    "I'm not sure I can pull this off... But let's give our best together, okay?"
    A golden circle of light appears at her feet, and Fate throws her cloak over her shoulder.
    "In order to begin anew as my true self... I will cast off the way I've been up until now."
    With a clap of thunder the par are gone.

    A flare of golden light emerges in the Garden of time. A shadow streaks across the chamber, and a flash of a golden blitz sears appears behind Kokoro.
    [THUNDER EMPOWER.] Lightning surges and thunder strikes Dengeki Shoujo from behind, adding extra strength to her already immeasurably strong blow... Just enough for Kokoro's momentum to continue unhindered, smashing into vital internals and much more dlicate machinery beneath the helmet.
    The golem shudders. It wobbles where it stands, teetering, before it topples backwards into the great set of doors and smashes them open.

    Fate simply offers a thin, slightly, sheepish smile as she lowers her device.
    "I'm sorry I'm late... Everyone."
Kokoro Akakuma 2018-02-10 23:47:04 88646
    All that power, and Kokoro can feel it immediately. This thing is tough. Tough enough that she'd need a second swing at the same spot - a swing that she might not get. So her only alternative is to push harder. 'Gonna have to dig deep... dangit, walkin' into the next fight that tired is gonna be rough-' Her instincts draw her attention behind her. That golden lightning-

    "Fate-?!"

    -is on her side. Flooding her with extra strength. Just enough. "OOOORYAAAAAAA!!" The roar of effort doesn't stop until Kokoro's hammer has gone through and hit the ground, all three stories. She steps back, panting, and holds her hammer at the ready for a second or two - until she's sure the thing is down. Then she swings it onto her shoulder, and turns to look straight up at the blonde mage.

    Violet eyes meet crimson. There's a small nod.

    Then Kokoro turns, and starts running through the door. For all the nicks and cuts she's taken, she's tough enough to move unhindered, and she'd rather she be the one in front than one of her more fragile allies.
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-10 23:49:05 88647
At the new flash, Rashmi stops dead, worried about some new attack... But even better, it's Fate. If not fully recovered, then at least in order enough to join the fight, and Rashmi could not be happier in this moment. "It's okay, Fate-chan," she says, grinning. "You're here now, and that's what matters."

Swooping down to Endymion, she gives the boy a look of deep concern. "D'you need to go back and rest? Because we can cover for you, if you need." It's a question asked utterly without snark or rancor, simply genuine concern for Mamoru, as well as all the other hats the boy wears, some of which involve the entire planet.

She doesn't wait for an answer, however. Simply leaving the option on the table is enough, and with a grateful pat on the shoulder she arrows toward the hole in the door, a fresh set of shields closing over her as her face shifts from worry to determined anger. A half-dozen bullets resolve and rotate around her as well, and the red-headed mage shoots through the rubble of the doorway with an indignant shout. "LOVE IS NOT A PIE YOU HORRIBLE WOMAN!"
Nanoha Takamachi 2018-02-10 23:57:25 88649
Nanoha Takamachi really doesn't want to waste her power here fighting this giant... /thing/ and when Kokoro's mighty, assisted SMASH can't bring it down... < Divine Bu--- >.

There's a giant flash of golden light, and she squints a bit. What's that? Is it another impossibly strong golem? Or...

The golem falls and it's....

"....FATE-CHAN!" calls out Nanoha Takamachi really, really loudly because she's actually REALLY REALLY happy to see her here right now. She in fact, dashes over-- using the already active Flier Fin. "Fate-chan." she says with wide eyes as she gets closer. She has things to say. Or rather, wants to say. But that can come later. And if Fate needs to hear them. But what she does do. Is take Fate's hand. And she /squeeezes/. Not insanely hard, but firm enough. "Right, you're here /now/ and that's all that matters...." she turns around to the door. "We need to face.. her. I think." she says softly. She doesn't want to say 'Your mom' to Fate when she knows she won't mean it, much like Arf at the moment.

She /does/ willingly let go of Fate's hand but does move to stand besides. She nods determinedly once. "I have things to say to her..." she says quietly.

She'll begin marching in after Kokoro. That wide eyed happy look changed to grim determination rather quickly as she uses flier fin to hop over any overtly large rubble.

It's time to hopefully end this.
Koji Silvia 2018-02-10 23:59:47 88650
Fully half of Koji's magical Bits burn out from over-use as the vanguard starts to wane, each one just channelling too much power for them to be maintained, even with the Unity Knight's own abilities being used JUST to regulate power for the onslaught.

For the last ones of the smaller ones present, he tiredly launches another half-dozen Bits as missiles as he calls out, "Raketenschlag!" And they are detonated by armor-penetrating suicidal strikes that each detonate the remainder.

Panting... Koji looks at his board... only six remaining, "How..." He has to pause as the drain of foing what he just did puts him to one knee for a second, "How long to regenerate?"

Koji... we've used up a LOT of your mana... it'll be minutes before I can reconstruct even ONE of them.

Nodding once, he pushes himself up to standing and then draws the short blade off his back, the remainder of Tyrfing's old form and life, "Deploy the remainder, and bring back Eins, Zwei, and Drei. We'll work with what we've got."

...Ja Wohl.

The bits that were the jump-shield come back, and three more emerge from his sheathe as he begins walking forwards slowly, saying over his shoulder, "Nanoha. Fate."

He smiles a little, "Being there for each other. Supporting each other. That's a power that she doesn't have. She's alone. She thinks it's her strength, but it's really her weakness... Even if we all get knocked aside in this next part, we're all still there with you."

A beat.

"Both of you."

Another beat.

"Jin wouldn't have done any less."

The walk turns into a loping run as he begins towards the gateway to Precia, the six remaining Bits flying vanguard for him.
Mikoto Nakajima 2018-02-11 00:04:33 88651
Battered, bruised, and wiping blood from the corner of her mouth, Hagane levers the last of her dance-partners off of her. "Exhilirating!" she declares it, turning to behold the well-smashed doors. "We should do this more often!" She steps up and over the mound of smashed golems, pausing to get out of Rashmi's way as the redhead rushes in. "Sorry, sorry, do 'ware the cape, it's dry-clean only," she mutters, watching Rashmi scream in and bellow her challenge.

She rests her blade on her shoulder, holding the Device casually at rest, and waves to Fate with her other hand. "Good to see you again, friend, glad to be able to help out." She steps aside again, getting out of the way of Nanoha and Fate, more than content to let them preceed her into the next room.

"Koji's right, you know. We're all with you on this. All the way, even to El-Hazard or Belka or Brockton Bay or wherever else this might end up." Flickers dance around her as she conjures more of the little dart-spells, and she grins widely. "And nobody, but nobody, is going to beat all of us."

She's about to add something when she has an 'ooh, shiny!' moment, and bends to pick up something glittering from the golem wreckage. Finally, she moves on with the rest.
Fate T. Waldia 2018-02-11 00:06:56 88652
    Scarlet eyes meet violet.
    And the nod is returned.
    There is precisely zero surprise on the girl's face to hear Nanoha call her name, and when the other young mage approaches and takes her hand... Fate does not flinch away.
    The squeeze is met with Fate's other hand gently resting atop Nanoha's as scarlet eyes wordlessly meet blue, staring for a long moment before Fate gives a much more verbal response, pulled back to the moment only by Koji's voice.
    Koji reminding her of Jin, the small tin soldier resting within Bardiche's core, with her even to this very moment, warm to the touch, and that warmth radiating through her faithful and cherished Device.
    "Mn. I have things to say to her too. Things I had a long time to think about."
Mamoru Chiba 2018-02-11 00:09:14 88653
Mamoru, now henshinless, is in jeans and fancy shoes and a NASA t-shirt under a white oxford shirt, unbuttoned; he ... he actually looks fine, despite having lost his armor, his cape, his sword. He gives Rashmi a winning smile. "I'm okay," he tells her cheerfully, and pulls his top hat out of nowhere, setting it jauntily on his head. "And I'll be careful--" and she's already gone, and he laughs, and he finds Kunzite, and he fishes around in the wreckage of the golem for a length of metal pipe long enough to use as the cane he's also reasonably used to fighting with.

And then, considering, he picks up another one-- and with a pipe in each hand, he slips in after the others.

@};--',--'-,-- @};--',--'-,--

In Bardiche's core, there's a flutter of vague awareness, and the warm love and never-failing faith of the steadfast tin soldier echo through that link. It might be only fancy, but-- he promised.
Kazuo Takeba 2018-02-11 00:11:45 88654
Kunzite leaps back from the wreckage Kokoro makes of the immense robot, deflecting shrapnel as well as he can, and skirts the shattered fragments and immense heaps of suddenly inert metal to meet Endymion partway. Well. To meet Mamoru partway. It's from there that he regards Fate, and gives her after a moment the same slight, serious bow he did Nanoha earlier. He scarcely knows her; but he knows enough. And he doesn't need Koji's words, or Mikoto's, or Rashmi's, to convey the same message.

Not that she's necessarily looking his direction. But that's all right, too. She seems to have her priorities in order, now.
Precia Testarossa 2018-02-11 00:21:34 88655
    Precia Testarossa is working at the panel as the door collapses behind her. This only causes a second pause as she continues to work at a more hurried pace immediatly after. She can hear talking and shouting. She's more used to 'freeze you are under arrest for violating intergalatic Mid-Childian law five dash five oh whatever.'. So she replies, thusly.

    "Love is not a pie. Love is a biochemical reaction in the brain that ensures propgation of a species." she insists coldly. Nevermind that the- body floating in the tube directly ahead of her is some indication that at some point, she'd had thought differently on that.

    She keeps her back turned. Almost done. Almost done almost...
    She suddnely wickedly smiles. Despite the slight power surges that have been happening- for some reason- she's finished the magical forumulae. So she turns around. To face the intruders.

    There's that red hammer girl. And two mages she's knows have been at recent Jewel Seed affairs. The other that seems familar. A black haired boy and Silver Hair... knight? and... that girl. And Fate. The last two get a more glower from her, despite the wicked smile she wears.

    "Tell me girl, has your rat archelogist ever told what the Jewel Seeds do?" she asks to Nanoha. The smile is more smug now. "I bet he doesn't even know beyond the facts of where they we're found." she says. "They grant wishes, yes. They're copies of some other gem or crystal. Did he know that?" she asks a little. "The Belkans made them. Maybe they coveted something they couldn't have. Or wanted something that could do the same. But, well. As always, everything they touched goes completely haywire." she says as she turns around back to the panel. "The only wish they granted correctly. Was to open a door to Al-Hazard." she says. "I mean. They tried otherways for centuries. And they had to create something that grants wishes to do it. Could you imagine?" she asks.

    "The Jewel Seeds are useless for bringing back my Alica, directly." she says, turning around to give a cold eye to Fate a moment, before turning back to the tube- and the Jewel Seeds spining in their capsles. Contained, but active. "You saw it when someone wished for that. In the hopsital." she says, eyeing some of the ones there. "What happens then. That was my original goal. Admittedly." she says. "But now I need to find a different way. And the only other things these do. Well..."

T"They'll lead me to the answer in Al-Hazard..." she says with a more crazier look in my eyes. "I mean. This world isn't my world. I'm sure maybe someone will realize this backwater world is dead in a few more hundred years. Maybe Mid-Childia will fix the awful problem this place has by then.

    This is when she suddenly turns around and raises her arms to the Jewel Seeds. What's she doing!?
Nanoha Takamachi 2018-02-11 00:38:57 88656
Nanoha Takamachi, first and foremost pipes up. "HE IS A SPACE FERRET!" she says, like she's said since day one. "NOT A RAT!" she says defiantly. She grabs Raising Heart and moves to try to get in front of Fate-chan because there is NO WAY Precia Testrossa is gonna try to whip Fate-chan while she's here. She will take it across the face if she has to.

"None of that is important!" she says. "Why would you do any of that to you own daughter!? You... you....!"

What can she say? "WITCH!" she says. Because it's the most worst thing the young girl can think of that she can say without getting scandalous gasps. "Just.. just because she's a clone or a copy or.. whatever! It doesn't matter! What matter is that she's exactly like your daughter! I know she is! She said she has memories of that! And all she wanted was to make you happy like she remembered! And it's why we couldn't be friends!" she says.

"And if you're not going to be sorry about it then!...."

"Then!...."

"THEN I'M GOING TO MAKE YOU SORRY ABOUT IT!" she calls out more angrily, as she points Raising Heart at her, gripping Raising Heart's handle on the far end.
Mamoru Chiba 2018-02-11 00:47:28 88657
There's a growing light of dawning realization on the Earth Prince's regal features-- regal despite how he's dressed, despite how he's presently 'armed'-- realization and disgusted horror. Copies of some other crystal. Gee, what crystal could that possibly be. And without love in those copies, no wonder... he's already seething. And then she goes on about Earth being dead--

That hits a nerve that's just as deep and personal as the perversion of the relationship between mother and child is.

"You think she'd WANT a mother like YOU after everything you've already done, NEVERMIND KILLING A PLANET? You think she'd WANT billions of people to die to bring her back?" Mamoru bursts out, bringing the pipes up in front of him as-- what? A shield? His jaunty and stylish hat manages, somehow, to avoid looking patently absurd. "She'd probably kill herself bringing it back, you short-sighted unfeeling moron! If she's anywhere near as remarkable and loving and wonderful as Fate is, you were doomed before you even began! How DARE you!"

Oh shit, he's gotten himself worked up to justice speech autogeneration levels of righteous fury. "The life of the planet Earth is as sacred as the bond between a loving mother and her child is, and only the most cowardly and selfish of villains would so callously disregard the former while twisting the latter into the worst, most profane, most unthinkable perversion of it! You have monstrously and callously treated the loving and devoted daughter you have in the name of resurrecting the one you have lost, and now seek to take the lives of countless other mothers and children. It is unforgivable! And I, Chiba Mamoru, will not stand for it!"

He lobs one of the pipes into the hand already holding one with a ringing clang, then rips his top hat off his head and oddjobs it straight as an arrow at the jewel seeds.
Kokoro Akakuma 2018-02-11 00:48:21 88658
    One step after another. Past the entry hall, into Precia's chamber. Into a 'lab' not of bright, overt horror and revulsion, but of a quieter, more unsettling disgust, the disgust of knowing what all has gone into the simple goal before them. Forward Dengeki Shoujo walks, all that explanation washing over, brushing past her - she doesn't get most of it. Belkans, Al-Hazard, most of it is just words she barely knows or doesn't know at all. But she gets the gist. And it just causes her to start sparking again, tiny little arcs. "Oi, old lady. I got somethin' to say to you. I bet you think I'm just some brute who only knows how to swing a hammer. But I get you, better'n you think."

    Around comes that gleaming hammer, swung, spun once, and... dropped to the ground, handle-up, just hard enough to crack the stone underneath it.

    And Dengeki Shoujo detransforms.

    It's a startling breach of her own policy. She's at least tried not to let people see her in both transformed and untransformed state, unless they already knew her. But here stands Kokoro, brown hair, brown eyes at all, arms out to her sides. Letting Precia see the girl under all that thunder. "I lost my parents when I was little. Don't remember much of it. Just a lotta noise, lotta screaming. I spent my whole life without a mom. People ain't given a crap about me. Not people my own age, not adults. I been miserable. I spent a long time alone. Ain't even had any friends, 'til I got here to Tokyo." Her voice softens, just a little, and her eyes close. "Woulda given anything I had, to have my mom back. Still would. So yeah, I get you."

    But Kokoro opens her eyes again, shoving her hands into her pockets. "What I don't get is how you think any of this is okay. What you think your daughter's gonna do when she finds out what you did for her sake? She'll find out sooner or later. You can't keep somethin' secret like that forever. If she don't hear it from you, she'll hear it from someone else. What you gonna do when your daughter tells you you're a monster and walks out?"

    Teeth grit. "It's what I'd do. I found out my mom did half the crap you'd pulled, I'd slap her in the face and never talk to her again. She's gonna hate you the rest of her life. And she's gonna hate herself, too. Every time she looks in a mirror, she's gonna see all them folks you hurt or killed so she could be there. She's gonna think of how you abused a girl who looked and sounded just like her. You really alright with that? Settin' your little girl up for a lifetime of hating herself, knowing what you did 'for her sake'?"
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-11 00:54:23 88659
"And if you are all right with that," Rashmi says, floating down to land next to Kokoro, "then we have to stop you. Because everything you're willing to give up, is everything we'll fight to the end to keep alive. Fate included."
Fate T. Waldia 2018-02-11 00:58:00 88660
    Fate has her priorities in order, yes. Verymuch so. Though she does clutch the edge of her cape as she dips into a polite bow of her own, in return to Kunzite's. But her focus is back on heading through that door. It may very well be the most difficult threshold she has or will ever cross, in her life.
    What she sees when she enters... Pauses her.
    Yes, the chamber is just as she remembers, there's her mother sitting at her workstation, as per normal. But what is out of place is the tube. That's where Fate's eyes linger- on the child floating within the preserving fluids inside the sealed canister that contains...
    Alicia Testarossa.
    It's a sight that's more than enough to halt Fate, now coming face to face with the girl who is her origin, the source of all her happy memories of the ailing, insane, woman before them all.
    "Mother..." She whispers at first, before taking a step forward. "I've come becuase I have something to say to you."
    She waits. She waits patiently. Regardless what the Jewel Seeds are, she knows she was hunting them down for her mother's purposes. Now that she knows the true intent of the lost logia, she quietly shakes her head. She is unsurprised by the angered reactions of others. Nanoha's anger, Mamoru's tirade. Rashmi's initial nonsensical outburst which resolves to a much more determined will to stop a madwoman. These she could expect because she can expect the anger at her mother's actions. It is Kokoro detransforming and baring her heart that earns the girl a long stare of wonder and awe. That she may not have seen coming, but it all simply steels her for what she has to say.
    "It may be true... It may be true that I'm just a copy and a failure, and a fake... And I'm sorry I couldn't be Alicia for you. I'm sorry I couldn't live up to your expectations. I may just be a doll you created... But I, Fate Testarossa, was born by you and raised by you. I am your daughter. And ever since you gave me life, to this day, I've wanted nothing more than to see your smile." She says.
    "You could tell me to go far away and I'll go to the ends of the earth for you. If you wished it, I would protect you from anything and anyone in the world. I may be fake, but if nothing else, my desire to make you happy is real. Not because I'm your daughter..."
    Fate holds her hand out to Precia.
    "But because you are my mother. Please see that. And please stop this now, before it's too late. For my older sister's sake."
Mikoto Nakajima 2018-02-11 01:02:27 88661
Mikoto strides in casually behind the others, her blade still resting on her shoulder, her eyes never leaving Precia's face. She listens as the others deliver their justice speechifications, nodding along as she judges the points they make and how well they deliver (Mamoru gets an 8 out of 10, while Kokoro impresses her much more, definitely 10/10.

She doesn't often do the speech thing. It's just not her thing. So she doesn't say anything.

Instead, she lifts her blade to hold it upright, hilt before her face, in a knightly salute... and spell-glyphs swirl around her again, washing over her to alter her Barrier Jacket from its blue and white fantasia to a stiffly formal, very militaresque, grey uniform, two rows of silver buttons down the front, and matching epaulettes on her shoulders. Her sword changes, as well, its simple hand-guard taking on a more elaborate shape, like a silver rose.

Mikoto extends her arm, blade held out, point leveled at Precia. The rose-and-crown patch on her shoulder is clearly visible there, as well, the sigil of the long-dead Belkan knighthood she's claimed as her own. (Surely, she thinks, Precia would recognize it... perhaps even wonder just how real it might be.)

"You heard them," she finally says, her voice strained. "If you love your daughter... if you cherish her smile... listen to them. Stop this. All you're doing is destroying everything you've worked for for so long. If you do this... you will find nothing. Not even the greatest sorcerers ever conquered death. Only delayed it. Even they passed, in the end. There's nothing to find at the end of that rainbow... nothing but tears."

And if you do it anyway, that pointed blade says, if you continue this, the glare in her eyes declares... We. Will. End. You.
Koji Silvia 2018-02-11 01:03:33 88662
Koji is about to speak up as well, but suddenly, the six remaining Bits float away from him, and take the positions of the projection form of Tyrfing. Both Fate and Precia would easily recognize the form as a Shutran warrior, though in the form of the sacred animal of the long-distant world. Tail-flicking and glowing eyes looking up at Precia, the Unison Device says...

The problem is... wishes ain't an answer. If they were, Royal Belka would still be here... I would be a proper Knight bonded to a Belkan mage, and these girls... even you... wouldn't be here.

The projection-form shakes his head, Wishes aren't a solution, they're a dream. The problem is you're so in love with your desire, the thing you think you want... you've gone totally blind to the thing that's right in front of you. That's what I had to face, when I was so damaged I could barely function. See...

Now Tyrfing looks back at Fate, To you? She and I are the same thing. And in some ways we are. But so what? Doesn't make us any less real, now does it. She's flesh and blood, I'm alloy, crystal, and mana... but we've got our own hopes and dreams now. We've become greater than the idea that gave birth to us. And after a moment, And we're not failures either. I was never activated in time to fight for the war I was made for. I lost my Lord here. She... this spunky little girl, she fought against every one here. Every single one of us. People who didn't WANT to fight her... for you.

Now he looks back up at Precia, and he glares, Doesn't matter what kind of wish you've got to make, the reality's right in front of you... and she's young, and she's scared, and she's got her friends to help her... but what she really wants is her mother back. And you look like you're about a half-step from losing even that. This has got to end. Because we're going to fight you, with every ounce of our being.

Not because we want to stop you. Because we want to save you. For her.
Kazuo Takeba 2018-02-11 01:04:27 88663
Kunzite sheathes his blade, silently, while Mamoru and Kokoro and Fate are speaking. He does not echo them. That kind of emotion is not the kind he deals in. But there's another kind.

"I am the Knight of Purity and Affection," he says quietly. "And I tell you that if you believe that love is only a biochemical reaction, despite all the evidence available that neither biological organs nor biochemistry itself are necessary components, then these two," he nods to Mikoto and to Tyrfing's projection without taking his eyes from Precia, "is correct. Your research is fatally flawed by your blindness. And if you wish your other daughter to live, then you need to lay down your work so far, recalibrate, and begin again."

The degree to which he believes she will actually do this is illustrated by his lifting his hands, shaping the beginnings of a work midair -- as if to try to disrupt or rechannel energy set into action, perhaps to try to keep her from activating the Jewel Seeds, or to try to divert some minute percentage of their own energies. Nothing complete. Only beginnings, that he can adapt to work with one of the Devices should he need to.
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Precia Testarossa 2018-02-11 01:24:30 88664
    Precia Testarossa has her back turned to the heroes. She can hear their speeches and their objections and their words. Some stick out more than other. Primarily, when they talk about how 'Alicia' might feel. This causes those outstreched hands to clench into hard fists.
    "How DARE you presume to think to know what my DAUGHTER will think!?" she cries out. "or learn. Or /DO/." she screams. She scowls at all of them. "You think too highly of a ball of rock in a hurricaune." she says to Mamoru. She doesn't really understand Earth's importance. That much is clear, as she turns back around. That's when Fate starts to speak up- and she does listen. She doesn't face Fate. "Because." she says cooly. "At one point. I believed you could replace her." she says. "But you weren't her. You struggled to remember things. All you cared about....." she says cooly. "Was my smile." she says through grated teeth. There's another power surge. A hat flies at a Jewel Seed Capsule and the Jewel Seed inside glows, and weird- black colored energy begins to seep out of it. It's only a capsule. The Jewel Seeds are active already. They're waiting and listening.

    "JEWEL SEEDS." she calls out. "GRANT ME MY WISH! OPEN THE DOOR TO AL-HAZARD! BRING US TO THE CITY OF WONDERS!" she cries out.

    The Jewel Seeds all shudder with a pulse at once. It probably feels awful. This is when a giant, black portal opens at the middle of the chamber-- and begins to vaccum things towards. Everyone is at a far end of the large antechamber. But everything near it on the other side is being sucked in and it's getting larger.

    But something lashes out of it, It's a beam of weird, ghostly red light and it spins and spirals around Alica's tube before--- it darts into it! And joins with Alica, entering the body. Suddenly.

    Alica's eyes open and Precia gasps for a moment. It... worked!?

    "Alica... my Alica... you're awake..." she says as she moves to put a hand against the tube. Something isn't right. Besides the whole. Dead body in a tube coming to life. Something about this seems wrong. Like some sort of natural order was just violated. That nagging in the back of your head. Like when a youma attacks.

    Alica moves to raise her hand, making an odd expression when... some sort of sharp spiny tendril slashes out- through the tube from Alica's hand, piercing Precia's shoulder. Not a fatal wound. Hurting. But not fatal.

    "A...Alica!?" she says with wider eyes. Oh god.

    What did she do!?. There's another slash. Another tendril- to slash off the rest of the tube, as Precia begins to fall down to the ground. Not dead. In hilarously amounts of pain. But not dead. Maybe she wishes she was now though after that.

    "Who has opened the door again." says Alica, in a weird, echoy tone of voice. "You've disturbed the sleeping. There is a price that must be paid." the girl says.

    It's pretty clear somethings taken Alica's body as a vehicle at this point. Something awful that god or any other well meaning entity has any part in.
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-11 01:40:30 88665
*bing!* << SEALING MODE >>

Perhaps his User is stunned by the otherworldly horror torturing Precia, but Nicomachea is not a young Device. He's seen plans fall apart in similar ways, and he knows that very soon, Rashmi will need extra output. Reconfiguring himself into his armored-folio form, the book pings a message to the other registered Devices in the area. << RECCOMMEND SEALING ASSAULT. DIMENSIONAL ANOMALY MAGNITUDE TOO GREAT TO ENSURE STABILITY OF PLANET EARTH. >>
Mamoru Chiba 2018-02-11 01:44:27 88666
"Oh shit," says Mamoru, now hatless in addition to unhenshined and armed with two lengths of lead pipe, looking cool, a teaspoon, and an open mind.

He takes a step back.

And another.

And then he steps behind Kunzite, dropping the pipes as the hat vanishes right before getting sucked into the vortex, and he unceremoniously grabs hold of Kunzite and does the only thing he still can aside from running away and in fact 'standing for it':

He whispers into Kunzite's ear.
Nanoha Takamachi 2018-02-11 01:47:04 88667
Nanoha Takamachi is eyeing and glaring at Precia as she talks. "HEY! YOUR DAUGHTER IS TALKING TO YOU!... YOU... YOU!" she gets angry at Precia on Fate's behalf. She's about to barge forth when Precia makes her wish and then theres a sudden thud of space ripping apart and a giant anomaly forming.

< FOREGIN ENTITY DETECTED IN DECEASED, MASTER. > insists Raising Heart. "Yeah I know." she says more cooly. She eyes Precia and then up to the broken tube. She frowns.

"I don't know what dimension you came from but you get outta Fate's sister's body right now!" she calls out angrily, as she levels Raising Heart at Alica's possessed body. "DIVINE SHOOTER!" she calls out. < Divine Shooter > calls out raising heart as an array of magenta orbs lunge out towards the possessed Alica.

She's glad Mid-Childian magic is non-lethal. This would feel really wrong otherwise maybe to her.

"Right! Hey how long do we have until this entire place is sucked away!?" she calls out.
Mikoto Nakajima 2018-02-11 01:54:31 88668
She did it. The madwoman really did it. This was ... beyond Mikoto's imaginings of how bad it could get. "Sabaoth," she whispers. "You utter maniac, Testarossa. You've doomed us all."

Sealing magics... are not her forte. She's better at them than purification, but... there are others already dealing with it. But there's something else she can do.

        (~"Fliegerblitz"~)

Hagane hurtles forward, a dozen flickers slamming into her blade as she moves, their light adding to its own, until it glows blue-white like a lightsaber... and she brings the blade down on the tendrils assaulting Precia, slashing away at them, trying to cut the creature off from her while the others seal it. "Nothing for you, Dead Sleeper! Not even her! NOTHING!"
Koji Silvia 2018-02-11 01:56:16 88669
Not good, Koji, very not good. I cannot define this anomaly. It's not in my database... Koji...

The young male Mage cuts off his Unison Device, "Spion Bits, Tyrfing."

Spion, Ja Wohl.

The form of Tyrfing vanishes and the six Bits fly away and around, each vanishing as they cloak an begin to take in data from the being that was Alicia and has begun to extend itself into the world. His eyes are calm and focused as he speaks up...

"Nanoha, whatever you did when you were fighting Fate, if you can get that ready again, now's the time. If you need help, Rashmi can Boost you, or we can have Kunzite feed you mana."

All he has is the short sword now, focusing entirely in what utility he can provider, "Nakajima-sama! You and Dengeki keep those tentacles busy if you can and buy us some time. Try and keep them clear so that Fate can recover her mother!"

When Rashmi's message pops up to one side of his sensor-enhanced vision and he says a bit more softly to Rashmi, "Can Nicomachea run the numbers and see if we can Seal this Garden? I'll feed you all the sensor data I can, but we're not going to have much time to work here. It's either we lock this being in here permanently, or we stand and make sure it can't get out."
Kazuo Takeba 2018-02-11 01:58:29 88670
Whatever Mamoru is telling Kunzite, it is apparently not 'let's save Fate's mother from the bizarre spikemonster her dead daughter is becoming.' Hagane's got that covered anyway. Kunzite's hands move sharply, describing a certain arc, and the blackness of his power creates one of its domes around himself and Mamoru ... but darker than usual; harder to see clearly through. "This is a terrible idea," he says back to Mamoru, just a little more audibly. But: this is, not that is. Whatever Mamoru suggested, apparently, it's going to be implemented.

And then he follows Nanoha's lead. Energy lashes out from inside that shield, a cool pink-violet beam laced through with crackling white lightning. Apparently the Garden's defenses are going to be fighting the possessing monster after all. Just ... by proxy. Even over the attack, he says aloud to Koji and Nanoha, "Yes." Nothing else. Just that if Nanoha can use the energy, he can provide.
Kokoro Akakuma 2018-02-11 02:04:36 88671
    So that's it, then. Precia is too far gone to listen to reason. Despite all the yelling, all Kokoro can do for a second or two is to deflate, just a little. "...course not. Alright." She takes a step back, reaches over and grabs her hammer's grip; and with a crack of thunder, Dengeki Shoujo is both transformed and armed again. "I ain't gonna kill ya, but I ain't stopping with just a cracked rib. You better grit them teeth while you still have-"

    Precia makes a wish.

    The way opens.

    Something unwholesome comes through.

    Eyes widen. "What the...?!" She's frozen in shock for long enough that the thing is able to wound Precia and free itself. The woman goes down, the monster rises up - Nicomachea declares it an enemy of utmost importance, and Rashmi trusts Nico, which means so does Kokoro. And she's only got one way to deal with things, which might not go that well for the girl. But defense...

    Violet eyes flit to Fate. Then to the wounded woman on the ground. Then back to Fate.

    "Silvia, that ain't our call to make." She cants her head slightly. "Oi. Testarossa. ...you care if your mom comes outta this alive?"
Fate T. Waldia 2018-02-11 02:04:52 88672
    "I think Alicia would have wanted the same thing." Fate says softly. "I know she could be selfish. I know because I remember, and I could be selfish too. But we both wanted to see you happy, you can't tell me I'm wrong, can you, Mother?" Fate presses. But then...
    Then something goes so terribly wrong.
    The Jewel Seeds open a door to somewhere. Even worse something comes out.
    Fate's cape whips in the winds of the yawning portal threatening to pull everything and everyone in.
    "This is..."
    This is wrong. The dead should not come back to life. Seeing Alicia's eyes open only gives Fate horrible flashbacks to that dark night in the hospital, running from shadows and fighting shades of things that used to be human. The girl goes a sickly shade of pale from the sight of Alica stirring within the tube. Seeing the sudden whiplash assault against Precia only confirms her fears.
    "Mother!"
    Blink and you'll miss it. Fate's speed simply isn't human. In a blitz blur of black and gold, she's suddenly there, catching Precia mid-fall. The best she can do is slow the woman's fall. Fate is a tiny girl, and the weight of a full grown adult is more than she can bear, but she eases Precia's fall, one hand pressing over the wound, slick with blood, to try and staunch it.
    "Yes!" Her reply to Dengeki Shoujo is vehement and firm. The answer of a daughter who would want to see no harm befall her mother.
Kokoro Akakuma 2018-02-11 02:05:08 88673
    "...alright."

    It might not be her answer in Fate's situation, but Fate is the one doing the deciding here. All she can do is put herself to work making it happen. And as she does with all things in life, Dengeki Shoujo puts that decision into action without hesitating. Electricity crackles, heavy bootfalls slam across the room, a hammer whirls. The towering magical girl skids to a stop between Precia and the Thing That Was Alicia, whipping her weapon around to hold up in a defensive posture, with a crackle of lightning that arcs between her and the ground.

    Briefly, she looks over her shoulder. "I ain't lettin' that thing kill you. Thank your daughter later. The one that's still alive." But that brief look is all she can spare.
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-11 02:15:13 88674
"I-I don't know," Rashmi says in answer to Tyrfing, shaking herself out of the horrified glimpse of Colors Out Of Time and forcing her gaze across the assembled Mahou. As Tyrfing's Spion Bits start feeding Nicomachea their data, screens blip up and around the redhead, displaying bars and graphs and lines and possibly even a Powerpoint or five. Also, kittens.

"Nicomachea... Let's get some communication first."

*bing!* << TELEPATHY >>

<< All right, >> Rashmi says, as if standing behind each and every one of her allies, << I know Tyrfing has a plan. I know Fate-chan wants to get her mom out alive. Mamo-kun, Kunzite-san, what're you about to do? >>
Kazuo Takeba 2018-02-11 02:30:12 88675
Kunzite's voice may not be literal, but his projected thoughts come across as just as dry. << What we're told. Current priority on feeding energy to >> (the Device has to fill in Nanoha's name; his internal representation is a flash of her energy signature) << if she wants it. >>
Precia Testarossa 2018-02-11 02:36:24 88676
    Precia Testarossa is shellshocked. She's mouthing 'Alica' apparently again and again for the time being, as Fate gets to her, and starts to drag her away. She's wounded. Not gravely so. There are worse places than 'shoulder' to hit on one's body.

    She hears 'Mother' and her eyes turn to there. "Alica....?" she asks in weird tone of voice as her eyes try to focus. Everything is dizzy. Really dizzy. She might be able to hear Kokoro but if she does she can't understand what's being said or she isn't caring right now after Mikoto cut that tendril.

    Meanwhile.

    Alica, who is clearly some sort of abomination sent forth, stares at the collected fellows. And the attacks on it's person in the form of bright magenta orbs and the slicing of it's tendril--- which grows back with worrying speed. "The last time we woke up. There was many bodies. There are not many bodies here this time." she says flatly. "You will take us to others." it insists. The eyes never blink.

    Awful tendril form from the palms, and from the bottom of Alica's feet as they lash out at Nanoha, Kokoro and Mikoto and Fate- all the closet targets it can find as at least Fate passes by for a second- and at least one has made an aggravated move if further away.

    The portal continues to suck in on the other side. It's in dimensional space. This isn't a new phenomona here probably. But right now it's a present danger to everyone- and whats on the otherside probably isn't a world of candy and sweets.
Kokoro Akakuma 2018-02-11 02:39:39 88677
    None of those tentacles will be reaching Precia or Fate. Kokoro simply won't allow it. She steps. She whips her hammer around. She'll smash one away, then just plain take the hit from the next. More cuts, some of them fairly serious. There's a cut somewhere in her hairline, because now there's blood streaming down one side of her face. But she swings, and she deflects, and she just keeps on preventing those tentacles from passing by, even if it means becoming their target instead. Not one can be allowed to reach either mother or daughter. Not one.
Nanoha Takamachi 2018-02-11 02:55:24 88678
Nanoha Takamachi gets told to setup the thing from before. Wait. He means...

Starlight Breaker?

"No!" she says. "That.. that isn't really pin point for this!" she says. "It's too big and wide! This is an enclosed space!" she says with wide eyes. "It'd just help break this place apart!" she says worried as she eyes that portal on the far side, still sucking everything up.

"Nrg.. I need something guided..." she says as she begins looking around rapidly. She could setup a framework but she'd need help... she eyes Fate as she bites her lip.

"F...Fate-chan.... is your mother going to be alright?... I.. I could use you over here." she says. "I have a difficult idea..." she mutters.

Raising Heart will ping Bardiche with these ideas. Of a framework and mana combo of sorts.
Mikoto Nakajima 2018-02-11 03:01:03 88679
Mikoto stands implacably in the way, blade in hand, slashing at any tendril that comes her way. No matter what, she will not let anything through. Even though more than one pieces her own barrier - and her skin - she holds her ground, covering Fate and her mother with flashing blade and swirling flickers of light.

She grunts and sets her feet as one wraps around her arm and tries to yank her towards the hole in spacetime... refusing to be moved. "Go," she calls to Fate. "I've got this covered. Finish this before it can - "

Blood bursts from her mouth as another pierces straight through her chest, but she slashes it in half an instant later. "Go!"
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-11 03:07:42 88680
Eyes darting over the energy readings, Rashmi frowns in thought, throwing a Solar Barrier around Fate and Precia, in case Kokoro's defense isn't eldritch-abomination-class. "I.... think....." But Mikoto and Kokoro are bleeding, and when Mikoto gets stabbed through the chest, logic and strategy goes out the window. A magic circle spreads out beneath her feet, and she holds Nicomachea high. "Accel Bless!"

*bing!* << ACCEL BLESS >>

"Boost Up!"

A veritable forest of ribbons snake out from the armored folio, wrapping around ankles, providing a bust of speed to all her friends. Kokoro will find herself moving like a track star. Fate? Well... *More* Fate.
Koji Silvia 2018-02-11 03:13:36 88681
Koji quickly replies, <<No ideas on stopping it, we just need to buy time. Rashmi, remember when we fought Hannah. We can use that to box it and the dimensional tear in. I don't think it'll last long, that dimensional rift is too chao-.>>

Looking up at it all, Koji calls back his Bits in time to see Mikoto take a tentacle in the chest. He watches Rashmi's boosts go out, and his head almost seems to turn too slowly... just in time to be whipped by one of the being's own tentacles, and sent flying. The strike is hard enough to rend his Knight Cloth, the breastplate discorporating into raw Mana as Tyrfing just barely buffers his wielder from the blow.

He just slams into the far wall and slides down, temporarily unconscious, whatever plan he had left silent on his lips.

Of the Bits he had left, only 3 survive that strike, and those three form one pitiful tri-gram shield in from of Koji in case another one comes, Tyrfing cutting in on the line to send back, <<He's okay, just unconscious. I managed to cushion most of it at the last second. But we're tapped. I can't even Guest to someone else like His Highness.>>
Fate T. Waldia 2018-02-11 03:14:08 88682
    "No, mother, it's me, Fate." Fate replies gently amidst the chaos as she tries to staunch Precia's wound, even if it isn't too terrible. But she looks up to see the horror that Alicia has become pressing the attack. Scarlet eyes widen, she brings her hand up to shield herself--
    And Kokoro is there. Fate glances down at her mother, lips pursing into a thin line as Nanoha calls her.
    Then there's a splash of fresh blood on her face. She looks up to find Mikoto there willing to help hold things down with Kokoro and... Fate nods.
    As soon as Rashmi's ribbon is around her ankle, she's gone, appearing at Nanoha's side in a blink, Bardiche in hand and staring down the thing that used to be... Her elder sister.
    "Mother will be fine. She's a Testarossa. She's strong." She replies, aiming at the tiny blonde abomination, an array of aiming runes forming in golden light forming in front of her.
    "Like that last time?" She asks in regards to Nanoha's idea, already lining up a series of complex sigils for Nanoha's aim.
Mamoru Chiba 2018-02-11 03:29:12 88683
"Kunzite, can you--" Mamoru starts hurriedly, focus snapping into place as people start going down despite Rashmi's help, and then his eyes slide to Precia, and his face twists in barely controlled disgust. "No. The person whose opinion matters in this wants her alive. Just-- let's get her out of the way and shielded so Fate doesn't get distracted," he says flatly, and lets go of Kunzite and sprints over to start dragging her out of the immediate splash zone.
Kazuo Takeba 2018-02-11 03:34:39 88685
Kunzite mutters a couple of syllables under his breath, shielded carefully from the telepathy, and moves to go with Mamoru ... keeping the shield around one of the more vulnerable people here. Not quite the most. Not with Koji actually not moving. But if they can cover Precia, Mikoto has a better chance.

Having Precia inside that shield, granted, may not make him much more comfortable than the monster that Fate and Nanoha are facing down.
Precia Testarossa 2018-02-11 03:47:45 88686
    Precia Testarossa hears 'Fate' and she grimaces as she regains a bit of sense of self. If that's Fate then... Alica! She stands up suddenly, despite the wound- like she got a jolt of ungodly energy somewhere. "ALICA! DON'T YOU DARE HURT ALICA!" she says through gnashed teeth. "She's been brought back! DON'T YOU DARE KILL HER AGAIN OR I SWEAR I WILL EAT YOUR BONES!" she says. Yes. She's being shielded. This is probably dumb but the Fate wants what the Fate wants apparently, which is to have this woman saved and not dead. It's probably that shield that's stopping her from attacking or acting against the other so fast too. So maybe it's two fold.

    Fate's Elder (God) Sister is lashing out. "Soon it'll be big enough for others to come out. I'm just the vanguard." it says coldly. There's not much emotion to this thing's voice. Tendrils glowing red and seeming to be on fire now lash out and into Mikoto- and then lashing out at others. Is. Is this thing apparently feeding on Mikoto's blood!? It appears to be. There's a short power spike.

    Well maybe we all know where Belka went to now. Delicious Belkan Burgers maybe.

    It's lashing out at that shield and Koji's bits now.

    But then it suddenly turns to Rashmi with those dead eyes. "A Support unit." it says. Tendrils begin all lashing up at her. It's going for the medic first it seems!? Yes!

    It seems obvlious to actions going on and in motion to end it.
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-11 03:51:55 88687
".....Squeep...." Kittens and charts and graphs vanish into the ether, as Rashmi barrels away as fast as she possibly can. No spells, no tactics, no boost, just run away from the tendrils oh god run away from fiery stabby death oh hey this is keeping it occupied nice running running running running...
Mamoru Chiba 2018-02-11 03:53:41 88688
"RASHMI!" yells Mamoru from inside Kunzite's shield, gripping the back of Precia's collar. "GET OVER HERE! IF SHE TRIES ANYTHING I'LL PUNCH HER NONLETHALLY!"
Kokoro Akakuma 2018-02-11 03:54:51 88689
    "You idiot, quit ranting and use your freakin' eyes for a minute, that ain't Alicia, it's some freaky thing usin' her for a puppet-"

    Aw crap, it's going right after Rashmi.

    Yeah, that's the one thing that simply will not do.

    While Rashmi runs for Mamoru and Kunzite, Dengeki Shoujo lunges to get in the way. Even if she has to take those tentacles head-on, with no defense other than 'her body', she is simply not going to allow them to reach one of the only people she calls a friend. "RASHMI!"
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-11 04:03:44 88690
Running running running running okay right good Kunzite has a shield up and IS KOKORO PUTTING HERSELF BETWEEN--

No.

Angling back toward Mamoru, Rashmi allows herself a moment of relief that Barrier Jackets make their wearers a decent bit stronger and tougher... because with her noodly arms, there is no other way that she'd be able to haul Dengeki up by the scruff of her shirt, flying directly for the shield and safety... and if Kokoro happens to get dropped on top of Precia, well hey.

Space is tight, and Rashmi is losing patience.
Nanoha Takamachi 2018-02-11 04:04:09 88692
Nanoha eyes lighten up. "Yes! Like last time! But..more complicated." she squints a bit. She can read those spells as can Raising Heart. She sighs a bit. "Okay...lets..." she draws out the framework--- a bunch of sudden magenta lines fly out all across the area. Trying to catch different postions and trying to make a vauge connection towards Alica as to hit her---and paths towards that portal for a firing solution over that way.

"O-okay Fate-chan...." she says as she squints at something mentally. She gives Raising Heart an incredulous look. "Really? That's what you named it? Well okay..." she says. She nods at Fate. "Trace over my lines too, and... then we're gonna feed a powerful attack over it..." she says, loading up Divine Buster into Raising Heart's magical memory.

"Here we go!...." she says, trying to sync up with Fate and Bardiche at the same time. Can she do it? She remembers that fleeting feeling, during the Jewel Seed that... that was in Jin. But she knows she can! She knows she can because Fate came to help them! And to try to help her mother! And this time--- there's no rivalry right now.

"Blast....!"

< Blast >
Kazuo Takeba 2018-02-11 04:11:47 88693
Two people in Kunzite's shield, besides himself, is something he can manage. Four people is a little much. Four people against the eldritch Aliciabomination's spike-tentacles is ... difficult. Very. And his energy capacity has been low and unreliable for months now.

Which is where the terrible idea he opted not to explain to Rashmi earlier comes in.

"Keep her from doing anything stupid, would you?" he says to the Dengeki Shoujo that Rashmi just dropped on top of Precia. Which her, he does not specify. But Mamoru was the one with the hand on Precia's collar, and Mamoru is about to be further distracted; the darkness and light chill of the shield intensifies sharply around Mamoru.

Because Mamoru has energy supplies, still. He just can't tap them reliably. So Kunzite is drawing on him to keep the protection around them stable.
Fate T. Waldia 2018-02-11 04:14:20 88694
    It is a testament to Fate's nature- her true gentle and caring nature that she wants to see her mother protected in all of this. An even truer testament that she still considers Precia Testarossa her mother, in spite of all that has been done to her.
    But, going out on a rare limb, putting her trust in Kokoro, Mikoto, and Kunzite to keep eye on her mother, it allows her to focus entirely on her work with Nanoha. She nods.
    Fate and Bardiche work fast, linking up with Raising Heart and funnelling calculations her way rapidly as energy coalesces. Pink and gold unite as the Devices gather energy- and unleash it, releasing a pink-gold pillar of energy, the two colors spiralling in a double helix towards Alicia.
    "Calamity!"
    [ Calamity ]
Mikoto Nakajima 2018-02-11 04:18:09 88695
Blood is life, or so the old vampire stories go. Mikoto's probably having flashbacks to that sort of thing right now... it'd be more interesting than this. Maybe if she just imagines it... but no. Can't give in. Not to this thing. Never ever. Something in the back of her mind is screaming for her to move. To fight it. And she does.

Flickers swirl around her, gathering in groups of a half-dozen or more, each group picking a tendril - not just those on her, but as many of them as she can reach. The little light-darts saw at the tendrils like razor blades, swirling around the not-flesh and cutting deep.

"Go back," she whispers, blood still dribbling from her mouth. "Back whence ye came, Sleeper! These are not for you!"

She watches as Nanoha and Fate combine their attacks, and smiles, a fey light in her eyes as the creature is blasted back. She reaches up and grabs hold of the tendril still embedded in her chest, taking it in her free hand and yanking it free, tossing it into the midst of a cloud of flickers to be shredded there.

Now she has something to smile about. "Belka... lives," she finishes, casting defiance in its face as the blast hits it.
Koji Silvia 2018-02-11 04:23:41 88696
At the edge of the combat, the lone shield covering Koji flies up to block the incoming tentacle... success at the cost of one of the last of the three Bits that Tyrfing controls to defend the unconscious Mage. The remaining pair float there as dangerously as they can, starting to fire weak and short range Barrets at any piece of Cthulicia that comes too close, but then one of them is just swatted away and destroyed.

And that lone bit and it's glowing blue eye that bears witness on the outside to the Blast Calamity...
Precia Testarossa 2018-02-11 04:40:03 88697
    Maybe if there was more time. Maybe if there wans't a soggoth spewing portal. Maybe if this was somewhere not in a deadly spatial dimension, there would be time for Fate to get through to her mother. But there isn't time. And there is a world ending threat that wants to inhabit your dead bodies here and go to Earth. That's pretty pressing right!?

    Defending goes on when it aims for Rashmi, trying to take out the support to make the fight easier. This doesn't go down well as Kokoro moves to block, and bits get pushed away. Alicthulu gets blasted with the focused assault, as she makes a vauge sound like a grunt, very long unearthly grunt as the body finally goes limp--- and the red light that entered it, exits it and begins flying around the room. It's looking for a new body. Currently however. No one is dead yet here.

    Yet is the keyword. That portal is shuddering and that shot to it is disrupted it heavily. Weakening it, but also making it more unstable as it's starting to tug at the edges of the more local area.

    Precia suddenly makes a /RUN/ and a dive into the air to make after Alica's body and wrap her hands around.

    "These heatens won't take you from me again!" she says with large wide crazy eyes. She's in the air. And it isn't long before her, and the body are making a rapid descent towards that portal to god who knows where else.

    Rescue is probably dangerous.

    Notably, the ground is starting to distengrate under everyone. The Garden of Time is ceasing to exist more presently.
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-11 04:44:11 88698
*bing!* << WARNING. PORTAL INSTABILITY COMMENCES. >>

This is all Rashmi needs to hear. "Kokoro, get Koji! NANOHA! FATE! WE DON'T HAVE ANY MORE TIME!" For herself, she darts out to scoop up Mikoto, using the last of her available mana to stop the Belkan's bleeding because damn it all if Precia was smart at all no one would have die today...
Kokoro Akakuma 2018-02-11 04:47:36 88699
    'Shellshocked' is a fairly apt word to describe the look Rashmi gets from Kokoro. Because she has just been /picked up and carried/ by her tiny little back-line supporter curry buddy. "Y... yeah, alright." Even with all those injuries, somehow she can still stand up straight and move freely, and still sprint full-tilt for Koji. "Sorry 'bout this, senpai, gonna be a little rough of a ride. You wake up with bruises, I'll listen to complaints then." Over the shoulder he goes, and off she goes. It doesn't take a genius to see that Precia's madness has doomed her utterly, and there's no way she's getting saved. So it's time to go.
Mamoru Chiba 2018-02-11 04:48:38 88700
Well-- yes all right it's really cold for him; Mamoru tries very hard to act like nothing's different, even as his breath becomes visible and his hand gets nerveless on Precia's shirt collar. And then there's brilliant light on the other side of the shield, and Precia tears herself away from himself and Kokoro and accidentally saves the world while being an insane abusive delusional wicked monster freakshow, and Mamoru just stares for a second.

"Um--" he says, "okay--" teeth chattering and now leaning against Kunzite "you should stop now and maybe we should go..."
Mikoto Nakajima 2018-02-11 04:55:00 88701
Mikoto seems to actually be doing a bit better. Despite falling to one knee as blood loss weakens her, she's managed to fend off almost all of the tentacles that came after her, now. She's actually showing a smile... for a moment. And then Precia hurls herself past the girl in grey.

"Nooo!!!" Hagane yells out, snapping to her feet as she reaches out in vain to catch the desperate sorceress. "Damn your eyes, NO!"

But she's too late. She knows much better than to let herself be drawn into the vortex, and she plants her feet, blade stabbed into the floor, as she still reaches for Precia... but she's well out of reach. "No," she whispers, "I swore..."

There's only one chance, and it's not a good one. She sends the last of her Flicker chains into the vortex, trying to pummel the monster away from Precia - but a chunk of floor is yanked out from near her, obscuring her view, and she can only slump once more and hope that the group can get out before the entire place collapses.
Fate T. Waldia 2018-02-11 04:55:49 88702
    This was... Not how the moment was supposed to go.
    As Alicia's body is released from the ancient horror's thrall and begins to drift into the distortion. Scarlet eyes widen when Fate sees where Precia is headed.
    "Mother! Mother!" She calls out, pleading for even a brief moment of reason to return to the woman, but she is only able to watch as Precia leaps after Alicia and vanishes into the void.
    Fate falls to her knees, breathless, panting, weary, and despondent.
    Someone is going to have to pick her up.
Kazuo Takeba 2018-02-11 04:59:08 88703
Rashmi's getting Hagane. Kokoro's got Koji. Precia has Alicia, so to speak. Fate and Nanoha have each other -- and any gods that might exist themselves may not know where Riventon is. Kunzite thus works with the theme that the other three (six) have going, and pulls Mamoru off his feet. Cutting off the drain doesn't undo the physical effects, after all, and even with Rashmi's speed boost perhaps stil lingering, Kunzite will be faster than Mamoru. Worrying about where they're going after the first few seconds is -- something they can do when the group's bought enough seconds to talk.
Nanoha Takamachi 2018-02-11 05:02:25 88705
There's a brief moment of happiness to Nanoha. It's brief. The feeling of magic working together. But that's all cut off when... Precia...Precia... "PRECIA!" she calls out, she wants to zip after her, too, to grab her for Fate. But...

Raising Heart is already shooting warnings at her. If she moves even three feet in that direction she'll be stuck even at her highest velocity.
"Fate-chan...." she goes and... Fate-chan is on the ground despondent!? She makes wide eyes. Nrg..."Fate-chan I'm sorry but I won't leave you here...." she says as she suddenly... scoops up Fate into her arms into a princess carry and then lifts up off the ground and begins making it out that door into the corridor as fast as her flier fin will take her.

"Is the exit portal still open!?" she cries out loudly.
Takashi Agera 2018-02-11 05:04:33 88706
The portal out doesn't look entirely safe... But then Riventon's voice calls out, magically empowered to come booming down the hall.

"I've got a general idea of what's going on and it's not good for you guys. I've fallen out of this place before. Do not recommend. But I'm about to ship a whole bunch of stuff back to Earth and if you want to ride on my pile of new equipment, I'm not shipping it though the Dusk Zone. Offer's quite limited time, by necessity."

Anyone who follows the voice into the main room where the golems were will find a large treasure trove of notes, equipment, and things that are frankly hard to place, including a Golem eye, sitting in the center of a dark blue teleportation circle - clearly, bigger than it needs to be for the loot alone. But Riventon won't admit that.
Rashmi Terios 2018-02-11 05:14:12 88707
The look that Rashmi gives Riventon is best described as 'C'mon, really? ' but she doesn't complain. Because he's right, even if he is being insensitive. They'll worry about that when they make it out of here alive.
Mamoru Chiba 2018-02-11 05:21:59 88708
Mamoru, not even slightly objecting to getting princess carried-- again-- with his head leaning against Kunzite's jacket and his arms huddled up as he remembers how to be warm, hears Riventon. And my god he has never been happier to hear that voice. "Thanks, Agera-san," he half-calls, slightly muffled and with actual true unmitigated gratitude in his voice, "you're a brick."

</irony>