The Same Favor Again

Akari decides not to mess with what works, and asks Runealy for help with the dark energy contamination she got from the Wolkenritter's mysterious book.

Date: 2019-01-15
Pose Count: 28
Rosalie Janus 2019-01-15 02:28:09 102672
Akari has texted Runealy, asking for help with "a contamination, kind of like last time". She stressed that it was much more minor than before (much more minor than being 40% Dark Energy by volume), and that she probably wouldn't need to stay over as she had before, but she wanted to 1. save purification attacks for a last resort, and 2. get it done reasonably quickly before school started again.

The reason why school is an issue becomes clear when she knocks on the front door of the Waldians' home. Once again, she's wearing sunglasses and a hoodie in her civilian form, but a few locks of hair are visible, and there's a couple of obvious purple streaks.

She's also conspicuously alone this time.
Runealy Waldia 2019-01-15 02:39:58 102673
Rune, despite Akari's reassurances, takes this somewhat poorly. Her first texted response was "Oh no! Of course we'll help! Come here as soon as you can! We can send a driver to pick you up if you need one! Will you be okay until you get here?, followed by a few fretting/worried emoji.

It's late, so she chooses to only inform one person here about it; Hinote had been the easiest to find, so she approached him. "Hinote... I may have some need of you momentarily. I'll be performing the purification ritual for Akari soon. I don't know how or why she needs it again, but she does... and doing it will likely tire me nearly as badly as it did the first time. Could you watch over me, just in case?"

When knocks are heard, Rune hurries to the front door and opens it. "You're here!" Rune speaks with open eyes and tiny gasps to her words. "Please, come in! I'll need a few minutes to finish clearing the ritual area in the living room, and perhaps we should arrange to have a proper area built some time, but it should do for now!"
Hinote Kagari 2019-01-15 02:47:05 102674
Hinote Kagari is usually a somewhat night owl. He's usually up late doing some sort of minor chore in the house or prepping the next at home meal or something like that. It's not that anyone expects that of him- it's that he likes doing that and it makes him feel useful and takes stress off the rest of the house.

He's more than happy to attend the purification ritual to watch over Runealy just in case. "Of course, Runealy!" he says as he follows along.

When Runealy ushers Akari inside, he gives a wave- but keeps a relaxed posture. Arms not crossed- at his side- not looking like this isn't a chore or a bother- because it is not. "Hey there, again, Akari-san." he says softly. "Welcome back." he says. He doesn't ask what happened just yet. That's rude to start leaning into 'what happened. why?' and so on. They're not here to judge. They're here to help at the moment!
Rosalie Janus 2019-01-15 02:51:36 102675
Akari smiles at Rune. "Hello, Waldia-san," she says as she steps through the doorway. "Okay, that'll be fine. Hi, Kagari-san!"

And then as soon as the door is closed, she drop her guard, and suddenly she looks absolutely haggard. She's clearly exhausted, and looks like she's been carrying a deep emotional pain. "But, um. Seriously, thank you for, uh, for helping me with ... with this." And that last syllable shifts downward in pitch slightly, just a touch closer to her 'Nightbell'-voice than she usually has.

And then she stumbles slightly. "Whoa!" She grumbles softly, in a tone that suggests that this is not her first stumble, and she doesn't expect it to be the last.
Runealy Waldia 2019-01-15 02:55:02 102676
"Thank you," Rune offers in a soft tone to Hinote. "I'll need some room to move around one of the couches, if she decides to lie down for this... could you clear out the tables and anything else nearby, plea-- ahh?!"

She cries out in surprise when Akari nearly trips, reaching out to stabilize their guest. "Is this worse than you suggested at first? I don't recall you looking quite like this the first time around."
Hinote Kagari 2019-01-15 03:00:36 102677
Hinote Kagari moves to do that, but not before bringing one of the chairs from the kitchen area and placing it near the door. "Here." he offers softly. He frowns. "Is it that bad, Akari-san?" he asks softly. "What happened, exactly- if- I might ask." she says softly.

He will however, start moving furniture- merely pushing it out of the way--- not hauling it to another room- he'd actually need help for that- and makes a 'grunt' when he does because furniture is always way more heavier than you always expect.

"This energy infection could had been inflicted a different way- therefore causing different effects." he asides to Runealy. "I mean unless she went and took another long dip in a dark energy bath when no one was looking." he asides somewhat jokingly at the end there.
Rosalie Janus 2019-01-15 03:13:54 102678
Akari smiles weakly up at Runealy. "I have just had the worst couple of months imaginable," she says. She snorts at Hinote's comment, though.

She sits down, and sighs softly. "... So, uh, I forget if I mentioned that my creators based me on a Belkan legend," she says. "But it was about a group of living magical programs called the Wolkenritter, meaning 'Cloud Knights'. And ..." She shrugs. "I'm pretty sure the actual Wolkenritter showed up in Tokyo, and as of this past November they've been using this book filled with dark energy to steal peoples' Linker Cores -- the 'organ', so to speak, that produces usable magic. I know they got Fate-chan's girlfriend Takamachi-san, Magical Girl Clotho, Rashmi Terios, and ... well ... now me and Cure Shield."

She pauses. "But ... apparently I started to glitch out when they drained me, and their leader Signum panicked and shoved some of the energy from the book back into be." She shrugs uncomfortable. "And ... that's what happened to me."

... This doesn't quite seem to be enough to account for how horrible she looks like she feels.
Runealy Waldia 2019-01-15 03:18:01 102679
Rune gives a slightly eyes-narrowed look to Hinote for his joke, but the disapproval passes quickly; he's doing the heavy lifting of clearing out some space for the ritual, after all.

Then Akari answers a lot of questions, some of them before Rune even realized they were something to ask at all. She even tries, at some points; she'll get a syllable or two into a question, only to stop when Akari fills in the blanks quite well.

"So... something... someone, multiple someones, from your legends are actually real history, and have been attacking people? Was one of them someone with a sword, and pink hair?"

She looks to Akari, then back to Hinote. "Hinote, thank you... I really do believe we need to look into a proper ritual area soon, I can't keep asking you to drag things around like this." Then she faces Akari, "When you're ready, I can take you to the couch and begin the ritual?"
Hinote Kagari 2019-01-15 03:23:33 102680
Hinote Kagari looks towards Runealy and then back at Akari as he blinks as she recounts the story. "Um... Long pink hair? Pink and white coat? Longsword?" he asks curiously. "We heard from someone that someone was going around stealing 'magic' by that description." he says softly. "-and preferably I would like to see that stopped- preferably though negotiation- but though fighting if required." he says softly.

"Right--what Runealy just asked." he offers. He looks to Runealy and answers her suggestion- "I think we'd need to build a room for that. If you want I can look into that. I mean. I don't mind moving things." he says.

"-and I'm sure Gaofelle could do that if I'm not around." he says quietly.

He taps his chin. "Stories turning out to be real seems to be a theme to some degree around here." he offers. Regardless, he'll move to the side of the room to get out of the way of Runealy's ritual.
Rosalie Janus 2019-01-15 03:29:50 102681
Akari straightens up slightly at the question. "Yes, and yes," she says. She pauses. "... you know what, it's slightly weird thinking of them as my legends, since in practical terms, I only came to exist on Earth," she adds. "But yes, the swordswoman with pink hair is Signum. The ... 'General of the Raging Fire.'"

She nods to Hinote. "My thoughts exactly," she says. "The way they've been acting ... the way they just panicked when they thought they'd killed me ..." She shrugs. "I feel like negotiations should work." She grins weakly. "I might just use the same lines you guys used on me."

At Hinote's comment about stories turning out to be real ... she just becomes visibly more glum. She moves to sit down on the couch. "I'm ready when you are, Runealy-san," she says softly.
Runealy Waldia 2019-01-15 03:32:48 102682
"We should look into it, then," Rune nods to Hinote's suggestion. "And getting Gaofele to help might be a good idea. I'd certainly prefer if it at least somewhat matched how such a place would look back home."

A frown has taken hold on her expression in the meantime. "As for this 'Wolkenritter leader'... perhaps she can be reasoned with, perhaps not. Using a dark artifact makes me worry... if she's a 'General', it's possible she's in league with the darkness. Or maybe she is desperate. Or being controlled by evil. I hope you're both right, that they can be talked down, but I suggest being absolutely ready for fights if we see them."

Then she tries to help Akari to the couch. "I'm sorry this happened to you, regardless. At first I feared my initial ritual had failed after all, when you said you needed this again..."
Hinote Kagari 2019-01-15 03:40:13 102683
Hinote Kagari listens. "Using a dark artifact to drain energy, huh." he says, as if feeling an intense sense of deja vu for some reason. He nods. "If she was 'worried' about killing you, then it seems they have some purpose for this energy that isn't 'kill and inconvenience people long term' I would guess. But that's just a guess." he says.

"...So Raging Fire and also a longsword. Huh. Guess I have my work cut out for me." he says. "Guess I gotta get on the front burner." he says as he keeps in his out of the way area.

"Right." he says softly. "Then we'll look into it!" he says with a smile at Rune. "Just- you'd need to tell the decorators how it'd look- if you're looking for something similar back home." he says lightly. "I know I spent two years there- and I have a pretty good grasp of things now- but I don't want there to be any small mistakes." he smiles.
Rosalie Janus 2019-01-15 03:44:11 102684
Akari nods. "Well, I mean, obviously we should be ready to fight," she says. "I'd prefer facing them ... outnumbering them three to one." She pauses, and smiles faintly at Runealy. "Or five to one, as the case may be, although I doubt if any of them has a heroic little sister." Referencing the incident with the horse-Zerobot, where she first encountered Rune ... "But yes, I do feel like they have some sort of purpose. Or at least," she adds, "a better reason than I had."

She settles down on the couch. "I seem to be fairly ... weak against darkness," she says. "Or something. Or maybe it's just my hair, I dunno." She grimaces. "... Or maybe I'm just getting hit worse because I don't have a Linker Core and my body itself is a spell." She shrugs. "I feel weirdly numb, and I occasionally keep getting dizzy spells. Can't talk much with Rubindorn, either."

She fishes her pendant out from where it's tucked into the hoodie. "Ruby?" she says. "Waldia-san is about to purify me now."

In a quiet voice, as low as a whisper, her Device says, <<JO.>> Yep.
Runealy Waldia 2019-01-15 03:47:29 102685
"Just to point out another possibility... they might have had other reasons for not wanting their victims to die. Such as losing an 'energy source' they could attack a second or even third time. I hope I'm wrong, but please be careful. Especially if you view this 'General Signum' as a rival due to her weapon matching yours," Rune offers raised, concerned eyes to Hinote.

"Regardless, those are things we can deal with later. Right here, at this instant, Akari needs assistance. Akari... I admit I don't understand much about 'Linker Cores' or how you differ, but I will do what I can to help."

Once their guest is in place, Rune calls out: "Summoning Princess' Tiara!" The jeweled headwear appears in hand. "The Line of Succession..." It's passed to her other hand, which brings it to her head in the same motion. "Transform!"

A flash of red light engulfs Rune, then when it disappears she is in full magical attire and has her main staff in-hand. "Akari, I'm going to begin now. Hinote... do not be alarmed if I slump over at the end of this; I may be exhausted, but likely not harmed by it. The ritual is... exhausting."

Then she begins to trace a circle around the couch using her staff's tip, a gold line drawing this shape from it.
Hinote Kagari 2019-01-15 04:00:21 102686
Hinote Kagari shakes his head. "I haven't even met her yet, how can she be a rival? That being said- if we're using the same weapon AND element, I better be ready." he offers. He nods at Runealy- this doesn't mean he won't try to catch her or help her up after of course- just means he won't be panicked about it.

He'll remain out of the way as Runealy starts the ritual for obvious reasons.
Rosalie Janus 2019-01-15 04:05:18 102687
Akari sighs softly at the byplay, and settles down. So far, this is the same as the last time. She knows more-or-less what to expect, and this time, she expects it to be much easier. There's not much room for surprises here.

Still, though ... She reaches up, and wraps her hand around Rubindorn. (Almost the way she'd been holding Mikoto's hand.) The Device's presence is fairly comforting, even if they can't talk much.
Runealy Waldia 2019-01-15 04:09:02 102688
"Precisely because you noticed that she shares a sword and flames in common with you," Rune notes to Hinote. "Though, if you wish to be by Akari's side during this ritual... it wouldn't interfere, and might be of some help."

With the circle traced, a soft energy-hum begins to emit from it. Rune's staff flies out of her hand, hovering several feet above the couch and spinning in place. "Akari, I'm going to begin now." She takes a breath, then begins a series of twirling dance steps around the outside of the circle. The humming begins to get a little louder once this is underway.
Hinote Kagari 2019-01-15 04:15:35 102689
Hinote Kagari nods at Runealy and then over to Akari, he motions softly, and raises his brow. "Do you need my support, Akari-san?" he asks. It's a polite question. If yes, he'll move over to sit by her side- if not- he'll stay where he is. Regardless, he doesn't uncomfortably press the point regardless of the answer.

He'll watch as Runealy begins her ritual dance, regardless. Taking note- wondering if it's the same exact one as last time-- keeping such thoughts to himself.
Rosalie Janus 2019-01-15 04:17:47 102690
Akari nods to Rune. "Okay," she says, relaxing as best she can. She takes a deep breath to try to steady her words; it's only partly successful. Her eyes flit to Hino for a moment, then she quickly shakes her head. She shifts her weight, just holding onto Rubindorn now.
Runealy Waldia 2019-01-15 04:21:45 102691
"Then I will likely need you soon enough, Hinote," Rune comments without facing him; her face contorts from the distraction of even having to talk to him in the middle of the ritual dance. So far, it's as he thought; there is no meaningful variation from the previous one as she continues to sway and twirl around the circle. "There does seem to be less to remove this time, Akari... I should be done soon!" Her voice lightens upon reaching that conclusion.
Hinote Kagari 2019-01-15 04:26:55 102692
Hinote Kagari nods respectfully at Akari and doesn't say a word, but he does answer Runealy. "Right." is all he says- not wanting to give a longer, potentially distraction making answer. He does take note that the dance is mostly the same as last time. Good to know- afterall- how big of a room might be needed with the kind of dance required, afterall- if they we're to add a ritual room or something like that.
Rosalie Janus 2019-01-15 04:29:43 102693
Akari manages a faint smile. "Okay," she says. She takes a deep breath; the purple in her hair begins to fade, and a vague black cloud rises out of her body, mostly centered on her chest, which seems to be vaguely made of sigils and letters. She blinks, then smiles faintly. This time, it doesn't hurt at all.
Runealy Waldia 2019-01-15 04:35:33 102694
"There it is..." Rune remarks with a hiss of distaste as the darkness emerges. "Having been purged once, this cruel power can be removed a second time. Begone, troubling one who seeks the light no further!" She makes a wide, 360-degree twirl, ending with a foot stomp on the ground... and the circle flares up with a bright gold-white light!

As it fades, Rune's transformation fades. Her wand disappears, and the light recedes to reveal...
Hinote Kagari 2019-01-15 04:39:22 102695
When Runealy's transformation fades- Hinote makes a quick movement forward-- it's short to call it a run, maybe a quick sudden jog. If she starts to collapse- he'd catch her- and at the very least, places a hand on her shoulder to make sure she's steady on her feet or needs led to a place to sit and rest a moment.

"There we go." he says softly. "Better?" he asks Akari for assurance- in case she feels something is wrong off the bat.
Rosalie Janus 2019-01-15 04:43:52 102696
Akari gasps softly as the darkness vanishes. But now, there's no trace of the darkness remaining. She sits up, tears in her eyes, and she smiles faintly up at Runealy and Hinote. "Yes, much better," she says, in a quiet voice. "Thank you. Um, thank you both, really."

She hesitates, then looks directly at Rune as her smile just sort of crumples up. "I'd, um, I'd like to talk to ..." And then she suddenly remembers how Rune talked about her mother, and how others reacted. "... to you and Fate-chan sometime soon," she says. "It's, um, nothing urgent, but, um, I would like to have the conversation happen sooner rather than later."
Runealy Waldia 2019-01-15 04:46:02 102697
Rune leans toward Hinote in any event, though she does seem to be staying on-foot. "...Thank you. I'm sorry, this is just very... draining to do. I appreciate you being here, Hinote!"

Then she raises an eye to Akari. "I'm glad you're okay now, but... a conversation with my sister and I? Certainly. I do wonder what it could be... but I'll be glad to speak with you as soon as we all can do so."
Hinote Kagari 2019-01-15 04:50:35 102698
Hinote Kagari nods. "We'll make sure Fate-chan knows." he says. "If Runealy doesn't catch her first-- I'll make sure she knows." he says with a smile. He nods at Runealy. "Of course, Runealy~ Even if I was sleeping, feel free to wake me up-- bang on my door- whatever you need to do. This is important." he reassures Runealy.

At least she's still on her feet, that's good!
Rosalie Janus 2019-01-15 04:54:41 102700
Akari nods, gingerly getting to her feet. "The three of us alone," she clarifies. "I'm going to ..." She rubs and wipes her eyes. "... w-well ... I just ..." She glances at Hinote, then shakes her head. "Um. Either way, um, thank you both," she says, smiling and bowing to each of them in turn. "I feel like you've all done so much for me at this point." She's just stumbling over her words at this point. "But, um, thank you. I'll be seeing you around, then."