Getting in his face, and staying there

Sailor Jupiter, Sailor Mars, and Nephrite decide that Riventon is overdue for negative reinforcement, for the sake of the people they care about.

Date: 2018-10-03
Pose Count: 35
Takashi Agera 2018-10-03 00:12:34 98582
It's late at night, in Ireland. Takashi is laying out on the very green grass in a field outside of a small village. The whole scene is very pastoral. Next to him are several books and a couple of laptop computers. He still hasn't adjusted to the time zone difference, which will come in handy soon. Near him is a little cottage.

Despite the fact that he has several reasons to actually be here, he'd taken the idea of a vacation somewhat seriously - he wasn't connected to UMBRA or Eclipse's equipment, just taking his own notes. Lots of names and lines to other names, here. He laid back and looked up at the moon. "Tch. A whole civilization on a barren rock up there." he said aloud, to nobody but himself.

Little did he know that soon the standing mirror inside that little cottage would be a gateway for other people from his homeland.
Rei Hino 2018-10-03 00:35:10 98584
    From that mirror, a white gloved hand reaches through... then yanks back in. A moment later it reappears with more confidence, and grasps sideways for the frame, bracing against it before Sailor Mars steps through, releasing a held breath and casting her eyes about cautiously before turning to watch the mirror for any other arrivals.
    Rei wasn't typically given to fantasize about over seas trips, but it's occurred to her that she's left Japan a handfull of times, now, and it's always been for trouble.
    At least it's not the Arctic.
    ... And at least this time they're the ones starting trouble.
    Speaking of which, a brief scan out the window tells them where the target in question is. Moments later, Takashi's view of the moon is blocked by Sailor Mars head leaning into view; brow set, eyes blazing.
    A small crate of sake lands besides Takashi's head, and Rei says, coldly, "Takasi Agera."
Makoto Kino 2018-10-03 00:37:46 98585
All things being equal, a nice little vacation cottage in Ireland is not quite what Makoto was expecting from the other side of the mirror. What she was expecting, she couldn't have said - more creepy lab equipment and suspicious holding cells, probably. Less picturesque countryside.

Mostly, she's just really glad this trip didn't have to involve a commercial flight.

When Sailor Mars thunks down the sake and looms over Takashi, Jupiter is right there flanking her - standing tall and stern against the Irish sky, arms crossed forbiddingly in front of her.

"We need to have a talk."
Nephrite 2018-10-03 00:55:46 98586
There is a dull thud from the mirror's frame as a third attempts to step through it and discovers it to be slightly more narrow than anticipated. Nephrite adjusts accordingly, turning to the side to get his shoulders through. He glances around their destination and scowls. How dare Agera get a quaint little vacation cottage!

But the scowl can only last so long, because Mars and Jupiter have set up a delightful vacation-ruiner, and he has the humble of privilege of being along for the ride. And so a third face fills Takashi's field of vision, and that face is smirking.
Takashi Agera 2018-10-03 01:00:58 98587
There's a moment of actual shock in Takashi's eyes - not quite fear, but shock and confusion - before he takes on his typical out-of-henshin nonchalant/in charge tone.

"Hmmm. That crate looks familiar." he says, turning a page in his book. Internally, he's not... panicking, but he's thinking quickly. Better to not show that externally, though. "You know, I'm on vacation. That's why the whole... not in Tokyo, thing?" He raises his arm and swirls it around as if to indicate the idyllic Irish countryside.

And then Neph's head pops into view. Three. Three was less good than two. Two was pretty confident. Three less so. And with his lab currently disassembled and hidden in Eclipse warehouses throughout Tokyo, calling in help was harder. "You guys are going to make me stand up soon, aren't you?" He was trying to sound disaffected and annoyed but there was a tinge of concern there to be sussed out, if people were listening.
Rei Hino 2018-10-03 01:10:27 98591
Sailor Mars slowly crosses her arms as Nephrite drifts into view, the two Senshi framing the Shitennou in that pose and the three of them look, frankly, cool as heck.
    Her jaw set, and her eyes narrow, the Guardian of passion tries very very hard to restrain herself. "That depends on you." She says tersely. "You've done a lot of harm for one man. I really don't think *understand* how much."
Makoto Kino 2018-10-03 01:20:37 98592
Jupiter tilts her head slightly, a small motion of agreement as Mars speaks. "You can stand or you can sit," she says flatly. "I really don't care. But one way or another, you're going to listen."

She shifts her stance a little, unfolding her arms to plant one of her hands on her hip as she stares down at Takashi with sharply narrowed eyes. "Do you even realize how close your fake senshi stunt came to breaking reality? It's not something you can make right with candy and alcohol."
Nephrite 2018-10-03 01:31:04 98595
Nephrite pauses to tilt his head inquisitively. He's crossed his arms too, standing with the confidence of one who knows he is flanked by two of the most powerful warriors he knows. "Do supervillains get vacation?"

He tilts his head back to Takashi, fixing him with a dark gaze. "More importantly, do they get to take off for vacation after nearly wrecking the world? A little note of apology, and you get to wash your hands of the whole thing and have a nice quiet time in..." he glances around, "where the heck are you, anyway? The set of Lord of the Rings? Are you in Hobbiton? That's so unfair."
Takashi Agera 2018-10-03 01:33:21 98596
Takashi frowned. "And a tremendous amount of good. Which side of the balance I fall on probably soley depends on your emotional attachments." he notes. Finally he makes a very put-upon sigh, closes the book, and at least props himself up on his hands.

"Hey, I already recognize what went wrong with Mirai. She was out of control, and I let it get that way. Too much divided attention." He looked at her. "Reality is maleable anyways. I admire her drive if not her specific solutions, to be honest. Maybe it'd be easier to overwrite this world than try to fix its innumerable flaws."

And he narrowed his eyes at Nephrite. "No, this is the first time I've taken vacation. Not so much the first time I've been accused of nearly wrecking the world." He shrugged. "Anyways, I'm pretty sure these lands are ancestral to me - I'd be more sure, but you interrupted my research. Which is super rude, by the way."
Rei Hino 2018-10-03 01:38:38 98598
Mars can't help but bare her teeth in mounting frustration as Takashi speaks, clenching one trembling fist and barking "You're talking about flaws in plans! You're talking about... about..." she's so mad she can barely speak, "... ways you'd do it over! You *hurt* people! Do you even *get* that?! Mamoru-kun almost *died*! Sailor Moon was nearly enslaved to that *thing's* fan club! We *all* were!" She shakes her head, "You don't... people aren't even *real* to you...!" Mars draws in a sharp hiss of breath and quiets herself. "... You'll never change." She narrows her eyes, "... So it's over now."
Makoto Kino 2018-10-03 01:55:37 98600
"Do you - can you even hear yourself talk?" The pose of deliberate intimidation that Sailor Jupiter struck is rapidly degenerating into sheer incredulity. "Every damn time it's the same thing - excuses. Any way you can twist things to convince yourself you know what you're doing. You weren't wrong, it just went out of your control."

Jupiter throws both hands outward, spreading her arms to either side in an expansive gesture of pure frustration, the world's most emphatic 'DUH' ever communicated through body language. "No shit she was out of control. She was never in your control! You made a person and you set her up to think something was being stolen from her and you set her loose. You never learn, Agera! You just make bigger and bigger messes every time, and it's everybody else who has to clean up after you!"
Nephrite 2018-10-03 02:02:21 98601
Nephrite does not move. Not when Takashi rises, or when the other two lash out. That Takashi Agera thinks so little of people is not news to him. He has burned through his anger, has been burning through it for weeks, and now it is just a continuous simmer beneath the surface. At least it's something to keep him warm on this late night in Ireland.

"You know what else is rude? Trying to turn people into your own personal experiments. Trapping people as unwilling lab rats and telling yourself that you're doing it for some noble purpose. This wasn't just one incident where you sort of accidentally let something almost murder my prince. This was just more of the same from you. You didn't stop after you kidnapped Jupiter, and we have no reason to think you'll stop now."
Takashi Agera 2018-10-03 02:23:35 98608
Takashi now, finally, rises to his feet, and the studs in his ear chime. "Get Set." a male voice notes in robotic English.

"You think I don't care about people? It's people that I'm trying to save! It's this world, the multitudes of others out there, that I'm protecting. Do you understand? The problem is that you're all so fragile!"

He was in full rant mode. "Do you understand, any of you? You're mad at me because one of your friends, and one of the people who's important to the protection of this world, nearly died because of a MISTAKE that I made! I wasn't even trying to harm him and he nearly DIED. And the world DEPENDS on him. On each of you and your squishy, human, one-and-done bodies. Your group has a fifty percent win rate against Beryl so far, and your win came at tremendous sacrifice - including MY LIFE - and nearly didn't happen! Sorry, but I'm unwilling to entrust my universe to a COIN FLIP chance."

"And there are far more terrible things than Beryl out there - I've seen them, I've felt their awful power in the Dusk Zone. I want to stand against them... But you don't want to fight fire with fire; you see the danger of something like nuclear radiation and want to snuff it out, and then we'd have no x-rays, no PET, not even proper smoke detectors."

"The part of Mirai that failed wasn't my work, it was the fact that I let her be too much like Chiba. It was the same thing that caused my Jupiter to fail after a few days. But I'll have you know that both Mirai and Nullheart Jupiter stood up to all of you. And that's why they'll replace you - they can be rebuilt, they're stronger, better. And most importantly - loyal."

"You're just beta tests for the important fights." Takashi said, putting his arm out. "That's why you three all lost in the past. Just prototypes... for real power."

"Axion, EXECUTE." Takashi says, sternly.

    <Barrier Jacket,> the device begins, before becoming garbeled, and its voice switching to a harsh Belkan female voice, where it continues where it left off;<SCHATTEN UMHANG, AUSFUHREN BESTATIGT!>.

The device bursts a blast of dark blue negative energy in front of it, which Takashi punches first one arm through, then the other. That energy continues to coat his arms and body, before he pushes himself through it completly - arriving on the other side in what appears to be a long white labcoat, with barely-visible silver designwork along the cuffs and bottom; long black pants, and a black dress shirt with midnight blue vest over it and a blue tie that magically stays fixed to the rest.

    <BARRIEREMANTEL><ready!> the device reports, as the dark energy wells up. "You think you can stop me? I'm the Firstborn Prince of the Dusk Zone. I'm the Director of UMBRA. I'm the descendant of the most powerful mage in this world! So why don't you scamper on home. Before I blast you all the way back there." Interally, Takashi is a little worried about this fight, since he can't call on any sort of support from his lab. But externally, Riventon looks maliciously confident. Maybe that'll chase them off, realizing what they've signed up for. He hopes, anyways...
Rei Hino 2018-10-03 02:29:52 98610
Sailor Mars scowl shifts gradually to a pained grimace as Takashi rants and raves, incredulity amounting to shock and offense; and then spiking again into pure horror and outrage. "Replacements... betas tests... you could be *helping people* get *stronger*, but you'd rather replace them! You could be teaching people how to fight, but you'd rather steal from them! And you know what you do, Takashi? You know what you really do?!"
    Sailor Mars is practically growling, "You FAIL! Again and again and AGAIN YOU *FAIL!* And you *NEVER LEARN*!!" Flames erupt in Mars hands as her temper reaches a breaking point, perhaps goaded by the mounting power and theatricality of Riventon's power up. "We can stop you. We've always beena ble to stop you. We've always been stronger than you. You know why you've lived this long, Takashi-san?" She asks, putting bitter emphasis on his honorific, "It's because all this time... you've been chastised by the *nice* people."
    "You're never walking away from anything like this without consequence, ever again."
Makoto Kino 2018-10-03 02:45:42 98611
"There's no point in arguing with you. You're too far up your own ass to see the truth even if it bit you."

The fury of Mars flares like a bonfire - Jupiter's coils tight, brilliant in her eyes, poised and still in her stance and the set of her shoulders. Unafraid and ready.

"The fact is," she says, "we've been leaving you alone. Because Ami-chan and Mamoru-niisan think there's still a chance you could turn around, and we've wanted to believe they're right."

Jupiter uncurls her hands, flexes her fingers in a slow and deliberate motion. As she does, thin threads of electricity arc between her fingers. "That stops today. From now on, when you try to use people as experiments, we're going to be in your way. Whenever you start to fuck up, we're going to be there to stop you."

Her hands come together in front of her, palm to palm, energy gathering between them. "And we're going to keep doing it, until you get it through your head that you're WRONG!"
Nephrite 2018-10-03 03:02:07 98612
"Funny -- I don't see your little dolls here now. Oh right, that's because we crushed them both to dust." Nephrite grins, but it is not a friendly smile. It's closer to the snarl of a wild animal. "They failed because they weren't enough like Mamoru and Jupiter. They were missing everything that makes the real things so important to begin with. That's what you'll never get. That's why your toys will always fail you."

Fire and lightning flicker and crackle bright. Nephrite spreads his arms wide. The great expanse of the night sky glitters overhead. Waiting patiently for a signal. "You are welcome to join them."
Takashi Agera 2018-10-03 03:11:29 98614
"That's Takashi-sama to you, shrine priestess. What next, are you going to tell me my fortune is very bad?" And he took a sudden leap back. Shit. They were here to fight, not bluster. Or bluster, and then fight. Or something. "Are you really sure this is a fair fight? I mean there's one of me and only three of you." Hubris was a shield, of sorts, against fear. Fear was dangerous, when this much dark energy was coursing through you. "Man, if only I could threateningly generate elements in my han- Oh wait!" Riventon held out his palms, and first Dark Energy coalesced in them - but rapidly there were two balls, one of dark-purple fire, and one of dark-blue electricity.

"Oh, so you're going to continue to bring me data? The next generation of your Nullhearts will be so much better for it, thank you. Don't worry about me 'replacing' you, though. They'll be so clearly improved it would be pointless to try. And the things that make them who they are, that's what made them fail. Don't worry, I'm done trying to work from such flawed foundations. Never again will I attempt to make them anything more than soldiers and fighters. You have nothing to fear from another Mirai..."

And a few more black energy orbs burst into existence behind Riventon. "But it seems you have much to fear from me, still. You're all ready to teach me a lesson, by your words, but by your actions, you're just waiting. What's the matter, you can't justify any fighting other than self-defense unless your Lord or Lady give the orders? Need me to start things so you can maintain that veneer of being on the right side?" Really, he was ready to defend and counter, or duck away. The standoff, though, was benefitting him.
Rei Hino 2018-10-03 03:19:59 98615
Breathing through gritted teeth; letting the voices of her friends backing her up calm that fire ever so slightly, Mars growls, "Your fortune's run dry."
    So many times in the preparation for this, Rei had to remind herself that they weren't coming here to kill Takashi. Chastise, sabotage, humble... scold if that was somehow good enough, but not kill him.
    She'll have to try and remind herself again, in a minute.
    Mars steps forward, gloves hands still wreathed in flame as she says, coldly, "In the name of Moon... we'll punish you."
    The time for chastisement has clearly passed.
    Mars snaps her arms forward so suddenly that one can almost hear an impact as the fire roars to new heights, and she cries "FIRE... SOUL!!" unleashing a massive fireball in Riventon's direction, the mass of fire seeming to coil like it's constantly turning itself inside out, buckling under its own magical mass; clearly a level Sailor Mars is not used to producing.
Makoto Kino 2018-10-03 03:39:55 98616
Somewhere in the distant back of her mind, Makoto can let herself acknowledge that Takashi just might be right about one thing: she had, indeed, been waiting for him to make the first move, to be the one who escalated this into violence. Later, maybe, she'll have to do some soul-searching on whether or not he's right about the reason why.

In the moment, she angles a sidelong glance toward Nephrite, as though silently seeking confirmation of a consensus.

Then the flames of Mars roar outward, and the time for waiting and reacting is over. It's time for action.

"Sparkling Wide Pressure!" She opens her clasped hands around the knot of electricity that's gathered between them, flinging the tightly-compacted sphere of ball-lightning towards Takashi as she shouts the words. She doesn't wait for it to impact before she's leaping away from the spot where she's been standing, fully expecting a counter-assault; with long, bounding strides she makes to circle around Takashi so that the three of them might bracket him.
Nephrite 2018-10-03 03:52:17 98617
Nearly two months ago, a ghost stood on a rooftop overlooking all of Tokyo, and calmly asked Nephrite a question. "You want to kill him?"

"Yeah, I do," Nephrite answered. And he meant it, then, when the ghost of his Prince hovered close at hand, only the bonds of his princess and his friends and his guards keeping him tethered to the world at all. He did, knowing what it meant, knowing what it felt like to step that close to darkness.

Now? No. He does not wish to take Takashi's life. But punching? Punching he can do. And he can do it with the senshi, not behind their backs. That was what he was waiting for: not just for Takashi to strike first, but for one of the sailor senshi. To remind himself that he never needed to circumvent them.

Fire and lightning come in as frontal attacks. Nephrite deliberately did not collect his starlight to his hands: instead it rains down from above, scattered pinpricks of light that would be less damaging but more difficult to avoid.
Takashi Agera 2018-10-03 04:07:31 98618
Yep, it was on. Come on, stall. Stall until the tables could turn, he told himself. And don't let them know you don't want this fight. "Can't even punish me in your own planet's na- Shit!" Riventon was cut off mid-taunt, because Mars was attacking. He clenched his right hand, collapsing those purple-black flames into a wreath, and making a trigger finger motion of his own.

<FEUERSEELE!>Axion called as a small orb of fire on his finger detonated as well, a roaring surge of dark energy fire meeting Mars for a moment. It didn't stop it - but it slowed it enough Riventon was able to move mostly out of the way of the ensuing fire, and return back to his position fast enough that hopefully none had noticed. Except the fringes of his lab coat were singed.

"NEXT!" he called out arrogantly, and then as the thunderous next came, Riventon outstretched his arm and a Mid-childan Round Shield burst into existence, all dim blue runes, struggling against the power, bits flaking off like glass at the edges, before his second hand came up and a circle of runic celtic knot encircled the shield and buoyed it, even though the electricity was still coursing through it.

But it's Nephrite's starlight that comes between the other two attacks, that hammers down on him from above, sparkling beams of pain that impact his Barrier Jacket, and then start to make visible impacts; causing Riventon to struggle a bit to keep stood. To not show the pain on his face. But it was there. There were just too many to cover all the sides. And he was still holding back Jupiter's electricity in that shield.

But he turned the shield to face Nephrite, still crackling with electricity. And there was still Dark Energy electricity in one hand. Which he put to the shield, as a spark appeared just above Riventon's forehead. "Since you brought my gift back let me give you another one. I mean, someone gave it to me, but I didn't want it, either."

And he shattered the shield as he thrust his own energy forward and Axion called out the atta<NACHT BLITZ DRACHE!> appeared in blue on its onyx-like surface, as the Dark Energy took control of the energy held in the shield and it suddenly formed the shape of a twisted, electrical dragon - a western-style one - crackling with dark-blue lightning as it dove towards Nephrite.

"AND THAT'S NOT ALL!" he called, giving a few scattershot blasts to Mars and Jupiter - but Nephrite was the main target now. And Riventon had held his ground... mostly. The battle damage on his Barrier Jacket did show the effect of standing that ground, though.
Rei Hino 2018-10-03 04:17:34 98619
    Mars draws in a sharp hiss of breath, crouches low, and pitches herself forward under and around several of the oncoming blasts while reaching out her hand so a long tendril of fire flies out at Riventon like the world's most dangerous Gymnast Ribbon; shimmering and swirling in the air. A weak attack, not yet harnessed or worthy of a name, but enough to try to keep the pressure on Takashi while he attacks her friends.
    She knew he wouldn't go down like a regular Youma, and her blood is boiling, so she's more focused and aggressive than usual; but unlike Jupiter she's not a trained fight or athlete; she is not moving before the attack comes as she recovers from the lingering numbness in her hands that comes with putting too much power into an attack at once, and the impact of Riventon's shots slamming into the ground bowl her over; the Senshi tumbling on the ground before landing in a rough crouch. She looks up, wiping a line of dirt off of her face with one knuckle, just in time to see the dragon drop down toward Nephrite. "Nephrite!" She cries in concern, and, for what it's worth, sends a rushed Fire Soul out towards the side of the dragon, hoping to put it off course, if not dissipate it entirely.
Makoto Kino 2018-10-03 04:38:08 98620
He stole her dragon. The catastrophic jerkface stole her dragon! And he was trying to hit her boyfriend with it!

If Makoto hadn't been angry before...

"Oh no you don't! Flower Hurricane!" A sweep of Jupiter's hand whips the air into a whirling vortex of tumbling petals to push back against the dark mockery of her dragon, trying to give Nephrite even a little bit of a buffer. It's the most she can do from here before she has to move again, a few short quick steps ducking one of Riventon's shots with her arms coming up before her to guard.

Her focus homes in onto Takashi again, and her hands spark as they close into fists. Without another sound, she charges, barrelling at him full-force in a punch that trails lightning.
Nephrite 2018-10-03 04:49:13 98621
A brief moment of triumph at the hint of pain on Riventon's face. It's not as satisfying as a punch would feel, but Nephrite treasures it anyway. At least, until he has a dragon bearing down on him.

It's too much to tank, too much to try to hold back with mere starlight. He doesn't have shields, and he's not as fast and agile as Jadeite or Kyouko. All that leaves him is... a long glaive materializes in Nephrite's hand. He slams it into the ground, wedging it upright in the soft dirt. Then he bolts, throwing himself onto the grass to roll away from the dragon. Maybe he won't be fast enough, maybe the plan was silly, but he hopes the makeshift lightning rod was enough to draw at least some electricity away before it hits him. "Nobody liked your taste in crappy sake anyway!" He calls from the ground.
Takashi Agera 2018-10-03 05:09:38 98622
Well, at least that got their attention. Come on... Come on... He wasn't doing a good job hiding it anymore. He was ancy, nervous. And Mars and Jupiter were satisfactorily distracted by Nephrite to not be too much of a threat. Unfortunantly, Riventon is also slightly distracted by his own handiwork.

The dragon is buffeted by fire, and by the petal storm - and Nephrite's plan works mostly, draweing the dragon down towards the rod where it detonates in a FWOMP of lightning. It's enough to hit him, but not so much that he'd have to take the whole nasty surge of energy.

The tendril of flame lashes him out of watching and he makes an annoyed, injured gasp, turning... And then Jupiter is in his face. Suddenly. He has been here. Here sucks. And he's trying to dodge away, to block. And he's doing a better job than before, he's had some more practice, but Jupiter's skill outpaces his. A block, a block... and a hit, on his shoulder. A groan, a block, a block - and a lightning charge fist hits his side. A block, a block - and WHUMP, a fist to his face, and finally he has to hop backwards and stop trying to meet her - third time was the charm.

"DID YOU EVEN -TRY- IT?" he called back, before he gathered Dark Energy in his hands, again, swirling around like smoke, then becoming like orbs of floating ink in his hands. "I'm going to break anyone who comes to stop me. I'm going to destroy you. And it starts with you three. I'm going to put you in the damn hospital for so long you'll be happy I built a treatment ward because your injuries will need care that modern medicine can't give!"

Dark energy flowed into those inky orbs and they grew and grew, from softball to beach ball size, floating above his hand. Just looking at them gave off that nasty feeling, a sickly feeling. They were Dark Energy, but unrefined, polluted, twisted. Drawn right from the Dusk Zone itself. "And it's your own damn fault. I was content to leave you alone. Because I have to save the world soon, protect you from Clow Reed's machinations... and I'll do whatever it takes to succeed. And I won't let you stand in my damn way!"
Rei Hino 2018-10-03 05:19:12 98623
Sailor Mars shields her eyes from the light of the dragon's explosion with both hands, and moves them to see Jupiter pummelling Riventon's harrowed defense, allowing herself a sort of second-hand satisfaction at the impact of Sailor Jupiter's fist in Riventon's face.
    But then, just the sight of all the Dark Energy, openly polluting the world. Mars bristles at the sight of it; feels her stomach turn just being in proximity to it; but she keeps her focus, marching forward and angrily chastises, "You're a monster. You're a *parody* of a monster, and you don't even realize it, you cruel, empty-" she practically chokes on her indignation before growling, "Ami-chan should never have had a suffer someone like you."
    With a brief roar, Sailor Mars sends a curtain of fire Riventon's way to try to force him to retreat, even if it's to avoid minor damage. Damage wasn't the point.
    The point was time. A short window of action that Mars signals when she stretches out her hands, building the Burning Mandala's ring of scorching fire as quickly as she can. But instead of calling its name, when it's ready, she cries, "Jupiter! Nephrite!" She glares daggers Takashi's way. "Plan A!"
    The fire roars as the red orbs form in clock-like positions around it, but she kneels down and reaches her arms up, pushing the ring of flames up above her head as... alarmingly, she begins to call, "SPARKLIIIIING...!"
Makoto Kino 2018-10-03 05:36:06 98624
There's an instant, the span of an indrawn breath, where the deep physical satisfaction of punching Riventon right in his extremely punchable face turns into a rush of cold water through Makoto's veins as he begins to pull that terrible energy into the world. She recognizes it on a bodily level - she has been to the Dusk Zone, and it was Takashi's doing.

As quickly as the feeling spikes, Mars is calling out, and that's all it takes for Jupiter to rally. Without another moment's hesitation she claps her hands together, electricity flaring out from between her fingers and sizzling across the golden arc of her tiara as she calls the lightning to her. It gathers into an incandescent white-hot sphere that launches upward and outward until it's spinning in the center of Mars' circle of flame - waiting for Nephrite to add the last stroke.

Nephrite 2018-10-03 05:43:17 98625
Lightning crackles over Nephrite's back. He hisses in pain at the strike, but at least it was not an entire dragon to the face. "That's all you got?" He calls out, dragging himself to his feet while Jupiter has him fully occupied. He promised Jupiter she would get the first punch, and at long last it seems that his promise is fulfilled. "My guy, I have gotten worse electric shocks from kissing Jupiter on the cheek."

He gets himself upright, then walks over to reclaim his now-smoking glaive. "And for the record, I didn't try your stupid sake, because I know trash when I see it. I threw my bottle off the rooftop." One bottle, not the entire crate, because Mamoru is mean and wouldn't let him.

But there are dark orbs, now, and--yes. The plan. The ring of fire is prepared. The burst of lightning meets it. Last of all, Nephrite points his glaive at the ring, and white starlight alights over both ring and sphere, strengthening both. "--MANDALA!!"
Takashi Agera 2018-10-03 05:52:30 98626
"It's you she shouldn't have to suffer!" Riventon snarls as he actually... braces himself through the fire. And it's hot, and it burns, and the pain is so evident on his face, but he stubbornly won't lose ground, won't drop his attack. "Any of you! We deserve each other, we're the only two that can understand each other. Without having to talk down to your level. Do you even understand that's what she does - every time she talks she's making sure your feeble minds can get it?"

"But more importantly than that, I love her, and whether I can control this energy or not, and whether you like it or not, and who I work for - nothing matters. But the fact that I can see how much you all hate it? That's the only thing in this world that makes it feel even BETTER to be with her."

"And I will never, ever allow myself to be anything less than as great as I can be, because there will never be a time that I have to defend her that I've given up the power to!" And he is drawing in so much negative energy now that his eyes are solid black, gaseous Dark Energy flowing from the sides. "I will use my strength to build a better world. For us! And it starts... with this victory!"

But Riventon has three enemies. And that means he needs three weapons. He brings the two sticky-tar orbs together, and then they split into three, one floating in the center... but that's too slow. That's the time they needed to group together and attack...

It's a surge of electricity, tethered to a white-hot ball of starlight fire, driving at him one after the other."Oh fu-" is all he can get out before he drops the tar orbs to try to put up a double-handed shield - but the initial lightning ball simply detonates right through it, leaving him to be overwhelmed entirely by lightning, white-hot fire, and the power of starlight...

After the brilliant flash of light, Riventon's lab coat is more like a lab shirt, the rest burned away, as he's literally tumbling, rolling along the ground and bouncing off of it from the kinetic force before finally coming to a stop. And trying... to get to his feet. He gets the hands against the ground and his stomach off of it before he collapses again and the orbs of tar-energy lose all cohesion and drop to the ground, creating a sticky pool of toxic energy on the ground.
Rei Hino 2018-10-03 06:37:14 98633
Before Riventon can make his next attempt to stand, a blast of distracting fire flashes on the ground in front of him, and a red shoe heel plants itself beside him.
    Sailor Mars looks down at him with crossed arms and cold fury in her eyes. "Ami-chan is so much greater than you. You know why she slows down for us? Why she slows down for you? She just has that much love and patience in her heart. So much that she can't even see that under all that *hope* she has that you can be worthy of her, that you are still so much less than she deserves."
    Sailor Mars steps away, closer to her allies, utterly secure in her safety at this moment. "But all of that? It's done. You know you can't beat us, and that's just with us three. We're a vanguard Takashi-san... to a force that will stomp you down every time you poke your head out with garbage like this. Every time you hurt us, this will happen again. Every time you threaten or violate us, this will happen again. Every time you hurt anyone we've even *heard* of, we will pummel you and everything you rely on to continue this madness."
    Looking back, Rei Hino will not be fond of the utter coldness that enters her voice when she finishes, "And if you so much as sniff around Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Kamen with your projects again... That will be the end. That's my promise as the Moon Princess' Guardian of War."
Makoto Kino 2018-10-03 06:39:07 98634
Sailor Jupiter sweeps a quick look over Mars and Nephrite, confirming for herself they're both okay, before she relaxes out of her combat stance and steps carefully around one of the puddles of noxious energy towards where Takashi has fallen. Just out of his arm's reach, she sinks down to one knee on the ground next to him. "That's the difference between you and Ami-chan," she says. "She doesn't think of it as lowering herself."

She plants her palm against the ground so that she can lean in as she speaks, and Sailor Jupiter's voice is calm and steady. "I want you to know, I still hope she's not wrong about you. For Ami-chan's sake, I hope you can become better than you are. Because the you right now... thinking it's okay to do the things you do to people... there's no way you could build a world where she could be happy."

With a little shove, she pushes herself back up, propping her forearm momentarily against her knee. "I'm telling you this as the Guardian of Protection - the things you do have consequences, Agera," Jupiter states. "You've been letting them come down on everyone else for too long, but starting from today, those consequences are us."
Nephrite 2018-10-03 06:58:00 98635
Nephrite waits. For Mars' ultimatum. For Jupiter's support of Ami. He waits until she has finished speaking before moving to put his arm around Jupiter's waist. "For the record, this doesn't mean we're square. I can't forgive what you did to her, or what you did to him. You've interpreted our princess and prince's patience with you as weakness. You were wrong. This isn't punishment. This is a reminder of why you're wrong."

He shrugs. "They still think you've got some kind of human heart in there. I personally doubt it. If you feel like annoying me more, you can try proving me wrong." He glances down at the dropped crate, then back again. "Enjoy your sake, anyway."
Lacrima 2018-10-03 07:09:07 98636
Lacrima was in an Eclipse laboratory at the moment while all this was happening unaware of the danger Riventon-sama was in. An UMBRA lab wasn't available due to the moving. She was effectively 'playing' with 'Mister Squiggles', a tiny adorable ball of dark energy ichor with a giant eyeball and some tentacles. She was trying to domesticate him. Well 'him', she wasn't even sure these things had a gender yet. She sighs, Mister Squiggles went right for the shoulders of a mannequin and started bouncing a little happily, squish squish squish! "Mister Squiggles no! Nonono! You can't just leap on peopllllleeee." she begs. She drags him off. "Come on, be a good boy for mommy." she says as she places the ball of squish back down. "Staaaaay." she says.

"Here on the ground!..." he blinks, he does. For about ten seconds and he's back on the mannequin. She sighhhhs. Miserably, before Paige beeps.

< Distress Beacon! Riventon. Corrdinates Follow, Mistress. >

"T..the hell!?" she says as she suddenly grabs Mister Squiggles and places him back in his tube. "Sorry, baby, mommy will be back soon."

She looks at the coordinates on Paige's display and she closes her eyes and---

That's some vertigo. Why? She's never. Ever. 'Dusk Stepped' that far before. She actually appears a foot in the air and lands down with a thud on her feet in her labcoat. She almost falls over but gets her bearings quickly.

There's Riventon on the floor. A mess. There's Sailor Mars. And Sailor Jupiter. And Nephrite.

"WHAT THE HELL!?" she exclaims as she suddenly points towards the three. She'll suddenly make a run toward's Riventon and lean down and frown, making sure he's well okay and alive. Before she looks back with a scowl. "Riventon-sama I'm sorry but this obviously requires a tactical retreat to a safe distance." she says.

Then she'll dusk step, taking Takashi-sama with her.

There is no safe distance. But there's probably a safer distance than right here at the moment.
Rei Hino 2018-10-03 07:16:05 98637
Warnings and promises, and gentle nudges towards redemption under threat of injury in place, Mars actually starts to feel a relieved calm start to worm its way into her heart.
    For, like, a second.
    Then a vampire appears out of thin air, dressed for science.
    Mars blinks. "L-Lacrima-san!" And just like that, they're both gone. Mars... actually winces a little. She felt way more satisfied when she didn't remember there are people who like and believe in Riventon without qualification.
    But after everything he said tonight? To say nothing of what he's done before? She can call it a pretty successful night."
    Sighing at the sudden and unexpected ending, she's actually a little relieved not to hear Takashi's final word, or have to turn her back on him to leave. "... Nephrite-san, Makoto-chan. Thank you. You did a great job." She smiles, fatigue evident, "Let's go home."
Makoto Kino 2018-10-03 07:21:24 98638
Letting out a long, slow breath, Jupiter curls her arm around Nephrite and leans in against his side. Her eyes lift from the spot where Takashi and Lacrima disappeared to meet Rei's eyes, and she smiles back, lopsided but genuine.

"Yeah," she agrees, dipping her head in a little nod. "Let's go."