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File 140831386617.jpg - (256.81KB , 1280x1024 , burning_city.jpg )
40592320 No. 40592320
#Closed #Canon: 6A #Chill #Dark #Violence #FiM-only #Semi-serious

You see, the city was going up in flames.


In what will be remembered as the most daring terrorist attack of the decade, a group of unnamed saboteurs turned the Central Divide into a war zone. After an unknown number of assailants—suspected by be between fourteen and twenty—ambushed a Lonestar armored convoy with high explosives and heavy weapons. The attacks left over twenty law enforcers dead; and in the crossfire, Royal Centurion Blue was shot multiple times and fell approximately forty feet onto a side-bridge. He is currently being kept in an undisclosed location, and is reportedly in critical condition. Police are advising citizens to remain indoors, and we will report more on this story as it devel—


Breaking news, folks. Mere hours after the devastating gunfight at the Central Divide, a bomb of unknown origin has been discovered aboard the Celestian Celbratory Cruiser Perfect Dawn, which was in the process of making its annual tour around the Canterlot area. The ship had been seized a group of Ibexian radicals of unknown origin and capabilities, but it is believed at this time that they were going to detonate the ship directly over downtown, which would have killed dozens in the blast. Fortunately, a Lonestar strike team was able to storm the boat and neutralize the terrorists before their plot could come to fruition. It is currently believed that the terrorists were connected to the—


We've never seen anything like this! Less than 20 minutes after the strike against the Perfect Dawn, an unknown number of bombs has detonated in the Drydock area, killing several and reducing at least one building to rubble. The police have issued a state of high alert and—


Mere minutes ago, gunfire was heard in the Upper City's historic Matteroch district, as prelude to a violent home invasion that left four dead, the fugitives are currently fleeing from police on—


The stories are coming as fast as we can report them, folks. Two minutes ago, a passenger and cargo plane outbound from the drydock detonated over the downtown arewith—



And now, in the wake of this...historic Night of Fire, as our city mourns the...many lives lost, the Federal Government of the Equestrian Union has declared Canterlot to be in a state of emergency for an indefinite duration. All members of the police and Lonestar have been given executive judiciary powers for the duration. All citizens must submit to random examination by law enforcers and be ready to present identification on command. Any who cannot or do not comply will be marked as suspected terrorists. As the Royal Guard moves into the city, all citizens must be prepared to quarter soldiers and law enforcers in their homes. Citizens are obliged and encouraged to report suspicious activity from their friends, neighbors, and co-workers. We here at the Gazette remind you that we must stand together in this troubled time, and show our enemy that they cannot hold us in fear. Now, please rise for a message from our princess...
Unspoiler all text  • Expand all images  • Reveal spoilers
>> No. 40592323
File 140831396466.jpg - (53.60KB , 640x427 , bastille_day.jpg )
Through the haze of adrenaline, you were mercifully spared the full pain of last night; but with the sunrise comes the hangover. While your new objective is simple, most of you were shot, bruised, slashed, or battered; and those of you who had the misfortune to face the demon's shadows are marred with sickly blue welts where the shadow-bolts struck you. Though the wounds are slowly healing, it seems like it will take a day or more—an entirely unusal malady, which is cold to the touch, and leaves you feeling queerly empty...
"Got damn good news, girls." That was the video message the Old Man left you. "While you were in uptown, I was tearing up the drydock. Got a lot of people on our side now; I'm headed out to Manehattan, try and contact the longcoats. Keep in touch—and, uh, check the market. A buddy of mine just started making a lot of waves..."

It's not every day you plan the most daring job in recorded history—but hey, not every day is the Night of Fire. Well, the day after the Night of Fire, but shut up. Now six hundred thousand credits richer and with a powerful new ally, you just have to do two things: spend all your money in really awesome ways, and murder a god. Easy as pie.
Failure State, I have excellent news for you. Last night let me finish some tricky business. My wares are flooding into the city now. You've just become far richer than you know...
>> No. 40592328
File 140831444740.png - (191.85KB , 1000x1278 , FIRE THE ION CANNON.png )
Lunacy pops the ever-familiar vibrating laptop out of his saddlebags, and sets it up on one of the tables in the Pisshole.

"Ah, good to see you... whatever your name was. Crow? Or wasn't that just the organization you worked for? Doesn't matter! We have had a helluva last few days. What's up?"
>> No. 40592333
File 140831492060.png - (116.03KB , 310x313 , charming ain't he.png )
The midget mutt jumped up in place, looking over Lunacy's shoulder. He felt very excited and vaguely needing to hump something, but that was to be dismissed for now.
>> No. 40592382
Suave peers over Lunacy's shoulder, looking at the monitor with a dopey grin on his face. He's irrationally excited for what's to come, and the 80-some-thousand credits have made him happier than tornado in a trailer park.

"A helluva last few days is a bit of an understatement. Son of a bitch, we shouldn't be alive!"
>> No. 40592385
File 140832036522.png - (21.07KB , 236x255 , Air1.png )
Air was sitting in the corner of the room, generally just browsing the market on his phone and tuning into the conversation from where he was.
>> No. 40592389
File 140832103562.png - (598.38KB , 3000x5007 , Back Smirking.png )
Krieg looks over Lunacy's shoulder, smoking a big, fancy imported cigar and grinning from ear to ear. "Shouldn't be alive? We did a high-risk HVT exfil, blew up a building, hijacked an airship, and spoke to a goddess face to face! We're living a fucking action movie!"
>> No. 40592512
Suave looks at Kreig and chuckles heartily. "No fuckin' shit. An' I thought our li'l heist way back when when we fought all them robots was ridiculous. An', well, it was, but not nearly as incredible as the shit we're pullin' now."

"An' I wouldn't have it any. Other. Way."

He smiles warmly, shaking his head as he thinks.

"...Oh, Also. You got another one of them cigars?"
>> No. 40592513
I'm enjoying the spoils of your labors, Lunacy. Your demolition work kept the police very busy. My product is dominating the entire city now. They never realize they only stopped a decoy. Congratulations on several exceptional jobs done exceptionally well. Rest assured, I will be keeping in touch.

And with that, he disconnects. Guess he either doesn't have much to say, or doesn't have much time to say it--probably a little bit of both, given the way the black market has exploded the last few hours. While you obviously don't have the complete picture of all the ins and outs, it stands to reason he's behind the vast and overwhelming majority of the recent traffic into town. Regardless, though, he's not put up any work for you: guess that means you and your boys can treat yourselves to some R&R.
>> No. 40592514
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Krieg smirks. "Compared to what we've done in the past 2 days, all those other jobs might as well have been sitting around doing nothing!"

She pulls out another cigar from her jacket pocket. "And don't I always have another smoke or two?" she asks, pulling out a lighter as well.
>> No. 40592515
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Well, the city was burning, everyone seemed to be to busy to do their usual shopping, so that meant another day of boredom, and city exploration. What does one do when exploring a city? Why, take in the local flavor, of course. What better way to do that, then by finding a bar, and having a few drinks?

The first bar had been odd. He had seen leather before, but it was usually armor, and not so how were so many ponies collared, and not kept in dungeons? Odd city... The second one had been annoying. He didn't know what a 'dudebro' was, but he really didn't want to learn, or be called it ever again. The third bar had been home to mares that called themselves 'cougars'. Odd title. None of them had claws, or sharp teeth... Was there a bar or club in this town that was, well, normal?

The door of Club Lucius swings open, admitting one of the city's newer operators. Tall; armored in old, worn leather; and totting a battle axe that looked older then the stallion who's back it rested on, he works his way through what crowd there was, eyes on one destination. The pegasus takes a seat at the bar, giving a soft, relieved sigh. A mead, that's all he needed. They'd have mead, right? Right?? Another sigh of relief leaves him, as a mug of the sweet honey based alcohol is placed before him. Bar or club? Check. Drink? Check. BAC level? Minimal and rising.
>> No. 40592517
He smiles, taking the cigar and holding it out for a light. "Heh, no kiddin'. Yer always over-prepared. Then again, can't say Ah ain't tha same way. Heheheh..."

After what was clearly a dirty joke, he arches his back and cracks it. "...Welp, Ah'm thinkin' this calls fer some sort'a celebration. Y'all up fer headin' ta th' club? Get a few drinks, loosen up a little? Maybe a lottle?"
>> No. 40592520
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She lights the tip of his smoke and nods. "Hell yeah! We're taking my car though, gotta arrive in style!"
>> No. 40592523
He puts the smoke in his mouth, and starts walking towards the door.

"Ah ain't sure if'n Ah should trust you drivin', but all right."

"Oy, robo-boy! Sparky! All o' y'all! You comin'?
>> No. 40592569
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Not getting an answer, Krieg shrugs and heads out to her car. The engine roars to life, a loud, throaty growl that just cries out 'power'. She smirks and revs it a few times as Suave gets in before she tears off down the road towards Club Lucius.
>> No. 40592572
As soon as the obnoxiously loud car pulls up to the club, Suave hops out, adjusts his duster and his leather hat, and starts trotting towards the door. He turns to Kreig as he trots, speaking up.

"...Ah'm thinkin'a gettin' some good ol' whiskey. What 'bout you? I'm prayin' ta god you ain't gonna go cheap this time 'round. --Actually, y'know, on second thought, Ah'm not lettin' ya. If you get some damn Hogwash, Ah'm gonna slap you across tha face an' buy ya a real drink, ya hear?"

With that, he reaches forward and shoves open the door, stepping to the side and holding it open.

"Ladies first," he says, a shit-eating grin plastered on his face.
>> No. 40592575
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Krieg steps out of the car, locking it up before turning back to Suave. "We just talked to a goddess and survived. Tonight's not the night for swill, my friend. Tonight's the night for top-shelf!"

She raises an eyebrow at his holding the door, but walks through the door first anyway, making her way to the bar. He mechanical claws make a faint, but distinct, click against the floor as she walks over and takes a seat a few stools down from the new operator. Her looks drew some attention to her, with the scars, the barely-concealed armoured vest, and the mechanical forearm.
>> No. 40592580
A subtle beaut, ain't she?

"Top shelf was the plan fer me. Ah can't believe nobody else wanted ta come with. But, hell, drinkin' with you sure as shit beats drinkin' alone," he says, blowing out some smoke from his cigar.

Suave follows close behind the gryphon, making sure his apparel is in check. Quite the contrary to his friend, Suave has little to show off. Although a cowboy hat and a duster are usually considered atypical, this is Club Lucius, and he was walking up to a pony in armor with a battleaxe, and, well... Krieg. Krieg is Krieg.

He takes a seat next to his feathered friend, and pulls out a sack of bits. He glances over at the one in the battle armor, and lets out a low whistle of admiration before turning back to the money.

"...'Kay, so. How much do ya think a bottle is?"

Last edited at Sun, Aug 17th, 2014 22:46

>> No. 40592582
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By now, the pony in the leather armor seemed to be, well, at least a few drinks in. This mead was certainly a sight less powerful then what he was used to. Probably not fermented enough... As the two sit a few seats down, his ears flick lightly. Griffon? Nothing to new. They bought plenty of meat, so he wasn't unfamiliar with the race. The scars and metal though...pretty new. A brief wonder of how one gets to that look passed through his mind, but was brushed away as 'they've been in the business for a while'.

He nods his head, to the other two patrons, as he stars into a fresh mug. Mead was good, mead was safe. Lord only knew what into those other bottles behind the counter.
>> No. 40592583
File 140834222872.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg shrugs. "Dunno, never asked for it. I mean, we definitely have enough... I hope." She takes a drag from her cigar, the thick smoke rising above her head.

She looks over at him and nods back, "Can't say I've seen you around. You new here?"
>> No. 40592585
Suave rolls his eyes at Kreig, shaking his head. "Yeah, 'cause a bottle o' whiskey is gonna cost us eighty grand. We're fine. Now, whadaya want? Wanna split a bottle, or do ya want somethin' different? Ah'm tellin' ya right now, ya might wanna consider what Ah'm sayin; you know damned well what'll happen if Ah drink a whole damn bottle mahself. An', as fun as it was last time, Ah don't feel like payin' fer child support this time 'round, due ta some... Revelations, on yer end."

...And, as soon as he stops talking, he realizes his mistake. He said all of that out loud in the middle of a crowded bar, right in front of some potential fresh meat. But, soon, he realized something even more important -- he really doesn't care all that much.

With that, he turns around, and gives the newcomer a look, waiting for him to answer Kreig's question.

Last edited at Sun, Aug 17th, 2014 23:20

>> No. 40592594
File 140834331205.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg's face turns a shade of red underneath her feathers. She works her beak for a second before she finally finds the right words. "Suave, I'll make sure that doesn't happen, but you bring up a good point, a bottle to split sounds good.

She clicks on her comm system and says to him on a subvocal channel, "Plus, I can't have children anyway. At least, I don't think I can..."
>> No. 40592605
A question? He hadn't been expecting that. Was he new? Well, less then a month in this town, and less then five minutes in this bar. New seemed a fair title.

"I am. Got into town a couple weeks ago. Been trying to adjust ever since."

The last of his drink disappears in a long draught, before the tankard is set down on the bar top, gently. He glanced over at the two beside him, silently sizing them up, before confirming his suspicions. Totally a couple.
>> No. 40592606
Suave nods, waving over the bartender and giving him the cash he needed to. "Yeah, gotcha. 'Sides, half a bottle will probably get me pretty damn spent anyhow."

After a pause, he reaches up and clicks on his comm as well. "...An', well, is that somethin' you want me ta keep in mind fer later? 'Cause, if that's the case..."
>> No. 40592612
With that, the cowboy looks at Umi and chuckle. "Hahah! Hooo, nelly, Ah'm sorry. Ah bet that was oooooone helluva transition. ...But you seem ta be holdin' up okay, with alla that there armor. An' that ol' axe there."

He pours himself and Kreig a shot before turning back to Umi. "...'S a li'l unconventional, if ya ask me, but hell, if it works, it works. That, an' I bet anyone Ah know'd shit their pants if they saw a walkin' tank comin' towards 'em."

With that, he grabs his shot glass and slides it down the bar towards Umi.

"Name's Suave. Nice ta see a fresh face that ain't tryin'a kill me."

Last edited at Sun, Aug 17th, 2014 23:57

>> No. 40592617
File 140834527025.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg just raises her eyebrow. It's a little difficult to tell if it's supposed to mean "Maybe" or if it means "You're kidding, right?"
She throws back a shot and takes a better look at Umi. Yeah, his gear looked a little unconventional, but he looked like he could handle himself in a fight. She smirks at him. "Name's Krieg. And you are?"
>> No. 40592624
File 140834587534.jpg - (480.04KB , 1304x1304 , blue_stallion_commish_by_annasko-d5lyq37.jpg )
"It's...different. The lands I am from are...undeveloped. Our technology ends at bows, swords, axes."

He pauses, looking down at the glass, before looking over at the two. What was this? Was it safe? They were both drinking it, so logic said it was safe. He lifted the glass, taking a moment to form what he would say next, before tossing the shot back. He waited a moment. No odd taste... It wasn't bad.

"I am not sure what a 'tank' is. Ponies like myself are called 'warhorses', where I am from. I'm one of the smaller ones. My armor, and my axe are what I have, from my past life. Though I can't say my job has changed much."

He slides the shot glass back down the bar to the cowboy, before turning slightly, to face them both.

"I'm Umami. Most who knew me back home just called me Umi though."
>> No. 40592635
Concerning both the tone to his voice and the things they've done in the past, it's fair to assume he's not joking in the slightest. Probably not a good idea to gather any visual evidence on the situation, however.

He looks at Umi, a bit astonished after all that he said. From what he heard, he makes a million assumptions, and decides not to ask many questions. Yet.

He takes his shot glass, pours himself a shot, and tosses it down the hatch before finally opening his mouth to speak.

"...Wow, uh... Ah really don't know where the hell ta start with you!" He starts chuckling, raising his eyebrows in surprise. "You have a lot ahead of ya, mister. An' I ain't exaggeratin'. Ah thought Ah had it bad when Ah started, but holy shit. You ever even shot a gun before, son? --Hell, have you even seen one?"
>> No. 40592638
File 140834705103.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Her raised eyebrow changes into a smirk and a wink at him.
Krieg sighs. "Well Umi, you've got a long road ahead of ya if you're looking to make it here."

She takes a shot and a puff of her cigar before continuing. "Like Suave said, y'ever fire a gun before? I mean, axes and everything are nice, but you gotta get in close, y'know? And then there's augmentations, like this here."

She holds up her mechanical arm and makes a fist, the spikes extending from her knuckles and locking into place with a click. She relaxes her hand and they retract again. "Like I said, you've got a long road ahead, man."
>> No. 40592647
File 140834760188.png - (416.53KB , 709x1051 , blue_guy_by_annasko-d6si7zi (1).png )
"Seen them? I have. Shot one? Can't say I've done that. All I know is that they're loud, and I don't want to be on the wrong end of one. Can't say I'm a fan of them, but I get that ponies need to keep up with what's new."

He arranges the steins before him into a circle, mostly to have something to do, before looking back over.

"So, what are you drinking? It certainly wasn't mead."

The pegasus watches the mechanical augment with a bit of curiosity. That was certainly new. How did one even end up like that? Probably an accident. Best not to ask. Ponies didn't like being questioned about things like that. At least, that one headsmen with the missing hoof didn't like being asked. Were there more things like that? Maybe he could find something to help him. Though he doubted he could afford it on the salary he had...

"Augmentations...that's something I can't say I've ever even heard of. What do these augments do? Besides the, well, hidden spikes?"
>> No. 40592653
File 140834818377.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
She scratches the side of her head. "Well, they all do different things. There's the OuchEaze, which helps with healing little things like scrapes and cuts. There's the Peeping Tim, which improves your eyesight be a whole lot. Uhh... I'm a fan of the Titano Bodyshield. It emits a protective shielding layer over your body that's decently hard to get through. I mean, if you can think of it, it probably exists. And if it doesn't, you can always custom order things."
>> No. 40592656
He flashes a sinister grin at Krieg for a moment, before turning around and facing Umi.

"Well, least ya won't be too far behind. But yer damn right ya don't wanna be on tha wrong end o' one. Sure, ya can get kevlar, 'r some sorta armor, but even then, crazy bastards everywhere always find a way ta put holes in ya no matter what. Best offence is a good defense, Ah suppose. ...Wait, or is it the best defense is a good offence? ...Eh, fuck it, whatever, they're both true."

He pours another shot for himself and Krieg, carrying on.

"This stuff? Whiskey. Real strong, top-shelf whiskey. Ah know it's mah favorite, if ya ask me. Even though the shit makes me nuttier'n mama's pecan-hazelnut pie. Ya like it?"

"Son, Ah know damned well that there's an endless list of them things ta do damn near anythin' ya want with 'em. ...Ah'm never gonna get any mahself; Ah was born this way, an' Ah'm gonna stay this way. No robot parts fer me."

Last edited at Mon, Aug 18th, 2014 00:53

>> No. 40592659
File 140834893883.png - (732.43KB , 822x1024 , product_zps92f0474d.png )
"Those seem...quite useful, really. I may have to look into those, eventually. For now, I'm content to have enough to survive, and have an occasional drink. Who knew old jobs would help in this city?"

He shakes his head, smiling slightly. Those augments. Perhaps some of them could be useful. A shield, better armor, something along those lines. A new axe would be nice to. Something that can work against the armor and other things that ponies in this place seemed to favor so heavily.

"I think I'd favor a good defense. Though a good offense can't hurt. Why not balance the two, equally? I mean, I know I'll be upgrading this axe, as soon as I can. Some new armor would be nice, as well. As much as I like what I have, and how well it's served it's purpose, I have a feeling it isn't the best for the line of work I'm getting into, is it? And the whiskey? It's not bad. I think I prefer mead, but it's not bad. I imagine it's a bit more powerful, as well."
>> No. 40592671
"Mead? Never really tried it. Ah've just stuck with wut Ah've had, Ah guess. Partly 'cause if it ain't broke, Ah don't fix it, an' partly 'cause ya never know wut the hell's in them bottles they got behind the bar. An', even though this club's pretty nice, Ah'm not tha luckiest person Ah know."

He shakes his head, grabbing his shot glass. "Augments seem pretty useful, in a lot of places, but... Well, take one look at a couple o' folk that went overboard, an' you'll pro'ly reconsider. If you think Krieg here looks an' sounds crazy, you should get a load o' some of the whackjobs around town that are three-fourths robot, one-fourth batshit insane pony."

After gulping down his shot, he lets out a satisfactory 'ahhh'. He wipes his mouth, scratches the back of his neck, and turns back to Umi. "But, yer specialties?" He pauses for a moment, thinking. "...Eeh, gonna be honest; pro'ly not the most desirable in the field. But, that don't mean that it won't help -- not many folks really 'preciate the actual art of the melee, an' not only that, but, judgin' by tha look'a ya, ya seem like someone who can take quite a poundin' before he's finished."

Whether that was a sex joke or not isn't clear.

He smiles, and nods in conclusion. "But, yeah. Keep yer head up, an' you'll be fine. ...Well, unless you're, y'know, gettin' shot at? Then it might be a good idea ta duck an' cover."
>> No. 40592672
File 140835086304.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
"Those were just the ones on the top of my head. any more and I'd have to read them outta the catalog," Krieg says, taking another shot of whiskey and a puff of her cigar.
"Armor Piercing? Yeah, that's easy to come by around here. Hell, my spikes rip through kevlar. I bet if you found the right person, you'd be able to chop your way through ceramic!" she says, smirking
"No, if I look and sound crazy, it's because I most likely am! Or are you talking about Lu?"
>> No. 40592676
File 140835153324.png - (576.89KB , 1345x1345 , Another pic.png )
It seems the joke takes a flight over the stallion's head, were it made. He tilts his head, listening carefully, before nodding in understanding. Keep his head up, until he needs to avoid something dangerous. This pony seemed to be a wealth of good information. The former executioner was quite happy he had come out tonight.

"I'll make sure not to go overboard. That's if I even get any. Coming from a clan of backwards ponies, it's pretty odd even seeing mechanical limbs, let alone what some ponies might have. And I know I may seem...out dated. But I know I won't run out of..."

He pauses, trying to remember what it was called. Those little metal things that guns ate, and spit out the useless bits of. Shells!

"Shells! Err, I mean, I won't run out of shells, at a bad time. And I think I could be tough to take down, though it seems I'll be needing better armor, before I do. I doubt leather will hold up to most things that the ponies here have."


There was another new word. What was that? Some kind of armor for ponies who want to be invincible? Well. Even if he couldn't get that, armor had joints and chinks, and those could be targeted. If worse came to worse, armored ponies couldn't usually run. Though, with the augments... For a moment, the stallion simply looks confused, as he tries to work over what he had thought up.
>> No. 40593021
File 140838228188.gif - (1.05MB , 500x441 , sience.gif )
[cont. of Manufacturing An Artificial Soul.]

"While I personally find the term "soul" dubious, I've decided to continue my ancestors thoughts and ideas regardless. I have made a remarkable discovery! [see: creation of synaptic replicactor] which I believe has as my grandparents said created a soul. The synaptic replicator is able to clone an equine mind down to the smallest details of the neuron. No, this is not simply a biological copy (like an identical twin or something) but the actual thoughts and memories and personality of the subject. The process, honestly, escapes me which is why I've dedicated the past few days to intense study. This has been met with only moderate success. So far I have no cause to believe it has anything to do with the elements of harmony, nor indeed to do with spiritual consorts.

While I have far to go, a cursory glance has revealed a detail analysis of the inner working of the synapse itself, detailing information on many of the interactions, including the controversial problem of proteins and synaptic vesicles..."

Eska was scribbling at a furious pace, trying to get all her swirling thoughts down onto the parchment. Hunched up in a corner of wreckingball's office, she was only dimly aware of her surroundings, including the vague pain in her back and chest. Should she have told Farasi about these pains before she knew they would happen? Questions like that didn't much seem to matter when filing the family notebook with information, her mind tumbling out in the forms of rapid sketches, corrections and amendments. She was filled with a purpose, spurred by ghosts to fill in the gaps; the replicator seemed to change everything, and any other question seemed to lose relevance.
"With these detailed schematics, I have reason to believe that it could be replicated through not just organic means, but synthetic ones as well i.e AIs. Using the mapping software in the SR, transferring the chemical and electrical data into a digital replica (something I have no doubt my co-researcher/coltfriend can accomplish; he's a whizz with the language to say the least) and then couple this with the PA I'm starting to truly believe that every mechanics dream is coming true -- a sentient robot!"

"Housing this in a computer smaller than a renderfarm might prove trickier, however. Will have more info as research develops."

She was quite enraptured, to say the least.

Last edited at Mon, Aug 18th, 2014 10:26

>> No. 40593078
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>Making her way down the labyrinthine tunnels of the Warrens, Carnage felt her entire body ache as she recovered from the many surgeries she had underwent after their latest stint in High-Canterlot. Her body ached, her back felt like it was on fire and her vision became blurry every so often, and, just to make things worse, every so often, she felt out of breath and the pressing need to lie down somewhere. All in all, post-surgery recuperation sucks.

>Now Carnage wasn't a huge fan of mods, heck, for the longest time, she'd believed that anyone who needed anything to survive but their base skills and a good gun were cowardly fools using their wallets to fight their battles for them. And you could call the psychopathic mare a great many things, but she wasn't stupid. Their latest escape through High-Canterlot had shown Carnage that if she were to continue to protect her Crew, she needed to become more than what she was now. She needed to become a creature capable of fighting an army of cloned trained killers, she needed to ascend to a higher plane of combat efficiency she could not attain by any natural means; and if that meant she had to sacrifice her identity as a pony... well... she'd already made harder sacrifices in her lifetime. But the result was worth it - they had inserted plasteel grafts in her chest so that her skin could turn to armor... stabilizing cushions in her wrists to dampen the recoil of her guns, injected nano-machines in her eyes to increase her eyesight and placed a micro-defibrillator close to her heart if ever she were to be taken down again. All of this and more for the cost of everything she had earned and a small loan from Sam.

>Answering the call given over the MMS, Carnage opened the door to the late Wreckingball's office looking like a pained mess. On top of the many sickly blue welts that had arisen were the specters had wounded her with their foul magics, the girl was very obviously pained from post-surgery recovery as she limped her way towards a worn down comforter that had been left lying in the room and crumpled down into it with a loud pained groan.

>There was to be a meeting here, they were to discuss what to do now that they'd acquired new bounties on their heads and make sense of all the new information they'd been given.

>But by the gods... all Carnage wanted to do now was curl up in bed and lie there for a week hoping the pain to go away.

Last edited at Mon, Aug 18th, 2014 10:42

>> No. 40593118
File 140838464349.png - (901.02KB , 3316x3001 , Murderbird.png )
Krieg nods. "Yeah, ceramic. While it'll stop damn near anything, it's kinda like wearing a boulder. Shit's heavy."
>> No. 40593235
File 140838857474.jpg - (17.05KB , 200x200 , Snow in the city.jpg )

There was something very familiar about the situation she was put in, the past few days. Something that spoke true to her roots. A story she had heard time and time again in the depths of some drunken tirade that usually followed suit by either heavy snoring or excessive shouting and slamming of doors. It was the pain her father, or better yet, caretaker, had experienced so long ago when he came into the union itself. From researcher to banker, leaving behind a decent life in hopes of something so much more. Off the promise of a friend he had once respected greatly. Only to get the shit kicked right out of him, sending him into a downward spiral that had, eventually, cost him most of his family. Frost understood now, why her father wanted to drink. In fact, in thinking about it, she was pretty sure she understood the feeling even better then him. After all, her kick to the floor was quite literal. Kicked to the floor. Shot at. Burned. Clobbered on the head. Stabbed by some demonic, shadowy presence that left a very peculiar, very cold wound that left her feeling sore like she never had before. She had lost her leg. She fell into ice. She even died. And yet still here she was. Nothing at all had gone according to plan, and yet still she managed through. That was something at least, but in the end they had all came out of the experience with more than just a little something.

Dark, designer fabric hiding her many wounds, along with her shiny scales, her glasses keeping her mutated eyes hidden under a shade of tint, Frost walked down to Wreckingball's office in stride. What she had seen in that room gave her reason to smile. Those vast, intricate machines that gave promise of something so much more. Before they left, she made it a point to study every last detail, or as much as she could in that short amount of time. So beautiful, so intricate, she could not read the language but there are others who could. Others concerned with the science and the discovery. It was her job, as it always was, to leverage all of this into something a little more...practical. Frost was no scientist like her father, nor was she a prodigy of computers and mechanics. She was, and always would be, a venture capitalist. It was no major feat of perception to see that the world has finally started to give you a break. This could be their in, into something so much more. But first things first. They had to discuss what they where to do. Break or not, the situation was still a little bit shy of optimal.

Entering into Wreckingball's old office, she grinned and nodded in the direction of the others. Carnage and Eska, one looking about ready to die and the other enveloped in some sort of book that obviously had a great deal of significance. No doubt she was concerning herself with the acquisition of their most recent bit of tech. That was something to put on the list. They are going to need to put all these thoughts and theories to the test. Frost went and sat herself down on one of the couches. Yet again, she also came into contact with another point of business. She needed to upgrade the furniture here. Maybe she should get herself a proper desk? Whatever the case was, she sat down, clasped her legs together, and sent out a message to the remaining executives of the late, and great, sickle corp.

"Conference in WB's office in ten. Let me know if you can make it or not."

Sore, tired, beaten within an inch of her life, Frost was not one to simply give up. She had much to do, after all. And a plan of action to kink out with the others. So far, actually listening to other ponies was paying out some extraordinary dividends. A little bit of structure, a rough idea of where to go. Life was not great, but now they had the tools to make it so. And that was all the start she needed. More than worth the price of her life, much less all these wounds and sores. Until now, she would keep the other two in silent company. Smiling a weary smile. Nothing more to do at this point but to wait. Wait, and gather her thoughts...

Last edited at Mon, Aug 18th, 2014 12:15

>> No. 40594121
File 140843387855.gif - (2.34MB , 450x258 , 1405663482003.gif )
To say Frost's summons woke him might be a bit of an exaggeration, considering that would require Farasi to have actually managed to sleep. In reality he was lingering in a sort of half-dozing malaise, propped up on the shoddy excuse for a mattress in the shoddy excuse for an apartment he was inhabiting, staring at the screen of his very not shoddy laptop, thank you very much. He had started a process, he recalled, a firmware update for the Comdom that still clung to his hoof. Having drifted off somewhere, the sharp, commanding bark in his ear was the only thing that alerted him to the fact that it was actually done, and his wonderful toy was now more effective than ever.

That was certainly a good thing. Yes, very good. Stifling a yawn, he rubbed the sleep from his right eye -- his left eye, having an unnaturally wider eye-socket, didn't require such treatment -- and shut the laptop, slipping it into his brand-spanking new saddlebags before forcing himself to rise. He could hear his joints giving off audible pops, but the physical feedback was good. It was a good change of pace from the strange wound in his chest. He had gotten off lucky, really, but the sight of it was unpleasant all the same, and he made sure his coat was nice and closed up to keep it from view. From there it was just a quick vertical brush of the mane until he was off to the races.

Had Frost said 'ten?' He wondered, keeping a clipped pace on the way to the late Wrecking Ball's office. Did that mean ten seconds or ten minutes? He leaned towards the latter, but you never knew with her. And even if he didn't have to be punctual, part of him was actually quite interested in this meeting. Maybe the topic of those cloning pods would be floated-- fascinating machines, even if the sound the clones had made in their last moments was enough to make him shudder. Focus on the tech. Beautiful, revolutionary things that were beyond his wildest imagination. The programming had to be light-years ahead of anything else he had seen, to say nothing of the complexity involved in replicating pony memories in data-- oh hey, he was here. This place was really small.

"... Evening," Farasi reflexively said upon opening the door, nodding to the assembled delegation in a sort of general gesture that precluded him actually looking at them all. The smiling Frost caught his eye first and held it the most briefly, as he immediately snapped his attention to Carnage, eyebrows raising in surprise and concern at the sight of her. Then he slowly slid his gaze over to Eska, engrossed in a huge book, and decided to slide the rest of himself over there as non-creepily as possible. Which was still pretty creepy, in his own awkward, shuffling way.

"I, uh... well, I guess I'm not early, but, um-- hi, I mean," he said stumblingly, his eyes flicking back over to Frost just long enough to wag a hoof and abort the wry comment he half-formed. After this, he lapsed back into silence and busied himself craning his giraffe-like neck to get a better look at whatever Eska was so interested in. Talking was definitely eluding him at the moment.
>> No. 40594126
File 140843453759.png - (126.60KB , 768x1039 , jetstream_pony_by_conmanwolf-d7ruhrw.png )
The night was late when Sam decided to take a jaunt into the famed Lucius's bar. The moon high - invisible to all the scum in the middle city such as he. Body freshly awhirr with a new cavalcade of cybernetics, all thankfully beneath the skin except for his new contact parachutes - something that would have been fantastic on that last mission gone hilariously wrong. But that was the fault of... His team, and fate as well I suppose. But mostly he and his idiot team.

The rest of the team where off in some meeting, some great coming-together to plan for their future, the future of the Seven Sickles and Sickle Corp, but it was one ordered by his lover the unquestioned leader. So he got to be exempt from it, she'd tell him the highlights when he got home anyway. IT was for this reason Sam found himself free and alone for once this night, taking a trip down memory lane. He planned to go visit his diner soon. Get back to work where he belonged. But not quite yet. First he wanted to pay a visit to the place where it all began. The place where he and his crew first had their great coming-together.

The doors pushed open and the stallion stepped in - tall, taller than most ponies easily and standing on par of height with many a gryffon. Dressed in a longcoat made by this self same bar, no armaments visible, but of course. That was the whole point of the coat wasn't it? The stallion had a soft peach-tan coat, and a dark brown mane tied back in a long hanging pony tail with a goattee to match. Even alone, his soft, jovial smile never quite left him, eyes alive with the friendly humor one wouldn't quite expect from a stallion stepping into what was known to be one of the most dangerous bars in new canterlot. But smiling he entered all the same, casting a grin to the familiar bar tender that veritably sparkled as he stepped over to the counter, sitting right down by Krieg- Umi and the rest.
>> No. 40594127
File 140843541783.png - (367.70KB , 1158x960 , umi no bg.png )
As he sits down, he may notice the pony beside him. Had he been clad in proper armor, the stallion would have made a fairly intimidating figure to most, as was, he looked, well, less intimidating. Leather pauldrons and an old battle axe (Blade clearly sharpened to a razor edge, capable of separating limbs from bodies), the pegasus struck an odd sight. It may have been the old school armaments, the lack of augments, or the unnatural side, for a flying pony. Perhaps it was a combination of them all. Either way, he stuck out like a sore thumb.

As Sam takes a seat, the stallion gives him a light, respectful nod. He did a bit of a double take, raising an eyebrow slightly. He hadn't seen a pony that big in a while...was he also from one of the tribes? Well, a bit of alcohol was a good way to make one more talkative, and it had certainly worked on Umi.

"Excuse me?" His voice was soft, quiet, as if he knew that high volume wasn't the key to a conversation. "Are you, by chance, from one of the barbarian tribes of the Eastern forests?" Eastern...there was a relative term. A lot was east of Canterlot. Perhaps he meant the dense, temperate forests near the edge of the kingdom?
>> No. 40594139
File 140843620524.png - (126.60KB , 768x1039 , jetstream_pony_by_conmanwolf-d7ruhrw.png )
The stallion turned to face him, one ear flopping down at the question as he considered the oddity of it - barbarian tribes. As far as he was aware something like that had not existed in decades, if even at all the the sixth age that they now lived in. "No I'm not... Can't say I even knew there was such a thing, sorry." He rubbed the back of his head, giving him that same alarmingly sparkly grin he'd given the barkeeper, though now it was a tad more awkward and flustered. His voice matched his face and expressions to a T, only a bit louder than Umi's own, kind, and carrying a relaxed air about it. It also had the faintest hints of an accent of the far east attached to it, though largely faded.

"Right direction though, I'm from Nippony. Can I ask why you thought I was an umn, barbarian?""

Coat open, the battle-axe wielding warrior could see that this man was startlingly under-armed for someone coming into an establishment like this. Just a pair of stun sticks, handle sticking out of his inner pocket.
>> No. 40594154
File 140843671581.jpg - (480.04KB , 1304x1304 , blue_stallion_commish_by_annasko-d5lyq37.jpg )
Damn! Wrong. And now he might have angered this stallion. He looked somewhat unarmed. Ponies that went unarmed often didn't need weapons. Though the sticks in his pocket might be pointed at one end, or something like that. Best tread carefully...

"I meant no offense by it, sir. I thought you might be from the same area as myself. I'm from the forests on the edge of the kingdom. Old legends say the blood of the Clydesdale tribes run through our veins...but I think we're just a bunch of oversized ponies. Well, I though we were all normal, until I came to this town. Everypony seems so, well, small. When I finally saw another that was around my size, I kind of jumped to conclusions. And as far as saying Barbarian, well, it seems like a fitting word for tribes and clans that still take the heads of criminals, doesn't it?"

He laughs softly, shaking his head lightly. "A right mess I made of that, huh? And Nippony? I can't say I've heard of that place. I imagine it must be even further south. What's it like over there, if I may ask?" He tries to add to the hopeful diffusion of the situation, by offering the stallion beside him a soft, disarming smile.
>> No. 40594164
File 140843704557.jpg - (68.31KB , 460x600 , [gu.jpg )
"Very far to the east actually, an island nation, far far smaller than Equestria. It's... Nice. I never saw all too much asides from Sapporo in all honesty, which was a lot like canterlot, except smaller and we spoke a different language." The stallion thankfully didn't seem angry in the slightest, smiling and offering a hoof to the man as a soft chuckle escaped his lips.

"No worse than I would have my friend. I'm Jet by the way. And you do at least have a point there, you drew my eye as well when I came in. Not many ponies who even reach my neck let alone can look me in the eye, buuut that was the same back home."
>> No. 40594168
File 140843759941.png - (416.53KB , 709x1051 , blue_guy_by_annasko-d6si7zi (1).png )
"Heh, you should see my father, or some of the other headsmen from back home. We were usually the tallest, or most intimidating. Still not sure why I got the job. I was 'boring, and only there to do the job'." He shakes his head, laughing softly, before shaking the offered hoof.

"I'm Umami Stale. It's nice to meet you, Jet. May I buy you something to drink? I don't know much of what's here, aside from mead and whiskey, and you seem like you've been around town a while. I figure you know the drinks better then I can hope. Heh, and your's kind of the reason I spoke to you. It's refreshing to see somepony around my height."
>> No. 40594172
File 140843785626.gif - (921.13KB , 500x422 , 0QFYTky.gif )
"I know the feeling, one of the things that drew me to my marefriend was that she's taller than most stallions around here. I don't feel like I'm being scary just by standing beside her." He paused a moment, looking to the bar tender before shrugging softly.

"Sure, I certainly won't stop you. Just some apple cider, I've got things to do in the morning so can't get too drunk."

He looked back at Umi, seemingly sizing him up. Eyes briefly coursing over his form. What an odd guy to meet in this bar, an axe wasn't something you expected to see outside of a farm house or lumber mill these days either. "So what brings a "headsman" to the big city then?"
>> No. 40594176
File 140843851981.png - (1.02MB , 900x738 , traditional_practice___product59_by_jinyaranda-d7c1ft3.png )
Umi takes a moment, ordering the cider, while he thinks of what to say. Why would a pony give up a life of lobing off criminal's heads, to take up a life of butchery and attempted operator?

"Well..." He pauses to pass Jet the mug of cider, before continuing. "Boredom, I guess. I lived in a secluded clan, for twenty three years. I woke up, took off a head or two, ate, trained, and went back to bed. Eventually, I just got bored, and wanted to see more. I heard that there was work for ponies like me out here, in my travels. Operators. I kind of made the trip here, and now I'm just trying to break into the work force. Doesn't seem like there's a lot of work for a pony on his own." He laughs softly. "The fact that I look like an 'extra from a war movie' doesn't help, does it? But this axe is what I know."

He shrugs, slightly, before trying his mug of cider. Damn that was good...was it made of apples? Why had nopony back home thought to make apple juice into alcohol!? It may have seemed almost childlike, in the wonder it brought the oversized pegasus, but to him, just about everything he did in this city was a new experience.
>> No. 40594178
File 140844052987.jpg - (31.17KB , 365x352 , 3a7.jpg )
A grin slowly spread over the other stallions face as he spoke, a camradiel arm wrapping about him and giving him a squeeze before laughing aloud and releasing him. Sam had found someone like him, someone who lived not by the gun, not by the bullet or the augment or the profit margin, but by the blade. Their blades may be a different sort, but they where blades nonetheless. It was now Sam decided that he had found a friend.

"You've found a kindred spirit then Umi, in my city my life was dedicated to arena battles to the death, lives decided by who's sword was faster. And however much I may learn, whatever I do as I travel, it'll always be my sword that I know the best and the battle the only place I truly feel like I know my place in the world. And from the sound of it I'd say you sure those sentiments."

Sam took a gleeful drought of his own cider. Smiling and smacking his lips to clear the foamy beard that sprouted about them. The childlike glee Umi found in the drink Sam found in meeting someone of alike thought in this world of strangers and profit margins.
>> No. 40594179
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"Heh. Battles were not often had, where I was from. Some headsmen made game of their job. Letting the accused run, letting them fight. That was the closest most of us got to combat. My father was the fighter. Warrior leader. I've yet to meet another who can carry a warhammer as well as he did. His reputation kept our lands safe, save a few who thought themselves greater."

He chuckles softly, before blinking, caught off guard by the sudden hug. That was...sudden. Though reassuring, in a way. "We had our spars and melees, sure. None to the death though. Each one of us was a soldier, of sorts, and a fight to the death was another warrior lost. Don't get me wrong. I'd like to make a profit as much as the next pony. But for me, the reason I want to be an operator is to see the world, and make my own way."

He smiles faintly, before downing his mug of cider, and setting it on the bar top with a soft 'thunk'. He was happy he had found common ground with a pony that seemed to be somewhat normal.
>> No. 40594180
File 140844286199.jpg - (14.38KB , 168x200 , GIVE+THIS+MAN+A+MEDAL+_b38176718704b2c46296c43c32be25e3.jpg )
"So you are lookin' to be on operator huh? Well if you want I could ask the girl in charge of my crew if you could join us for a few jobs - see what you got to offer and all. I'm in it for pretty much the same reason, it's a way to hone my skills and learn more about what the world has to offer. But the pay ain't half bad either."

He downs his own and lets it drop with another 'thunk' in return.

"Speaking of. Next rounds on me, your choice of waht."
>> No. 40594181
File 140844341191.jpg - (480.04KB , 1304x1304 , blue_stallion_commish_by_annasko-d5lyq37.jpg )
Umi's ears perk, the stallion sitting up a little straighter, as the offer grabs his interest. A chance to join up with a group?? He takes a moment to compose himself, before speaking quietly.

"I'd appreciate that, Jet. A chance to join a crew is more luck then I've had so far in this town. And the next drink? Well. I'm assuming you've had a lot more time around here then I have, so whatever you like the most. At this point, I'd be happy with enough to buy a more covering set of armor. I'm guessing boiled leather can't stand up well to bullets, and some of the other stuff ponies are carrying."
>> No. 40594182
File 140844403654.gif - (1.27MB , 400x292 , ZY9QNk0.gif )
This man was a unique one to be sure, Sam rarely came across people quite so simply... well friendly. Most people in this world lived in fear of what their words or actions may bring, so they stayed quiet and slefish to protect them and their interests. But here was a man who was simply friendly and happy to chat with a total stranger. And get quite happily into an agreement of a drink and work with them in the future. Simple people like this, who did not let fears stop them from simply enjoying themselves where the kind of people sam enjoyed the company of. The kind he felt the shared the most with. Ordering the two of them a pint of pear cider to share, he turned back to him, shrugging lightly.

"I usually just wear a basic protective vest under my coat. Not much protection really, but it's all I usually need and unlike most armor on the market it's small enough to be hidden under my coat. But-... I've got a few other things going for me to avoid taking a hit." Sam payed the barkeep as he returned with their drinks, before turning to face Umi.

"Lemme show you, hit me. Come on, sock me right in the jaw."
>> No. 40594183
File 140844443752.png - (576.89KB , 1345x1345 , Another pic.png )
"Punch you in the jaw?" The pegasus looks around the bar, one yebrow raised. Why would this guy want him to sock him? It didn't make sense. Plus, wasn't starting a fight in a bar a bad idea? Was it a fight? Was it a set up? By the sisters, this alcohol was making him more unknown drinks for a while...Well, he asked for a punch...

"If you're sure, Jet..." With that, the stallion rears back, pulling his punch, slightly. He didn't know what was going to happen, and he didn't want to risk breaking the jaw of one of the three beings he had actually talked to. What could a pony possibly have, to prevent a hoof being flung at their jaw? Especially one who seemed so...unarmored?
>> No. 40594184
File 140844499078.gif - (116.16KB , 500x75 , 40Eg6mU.gif )
When his hoof was mere millimetres from Sam's still smiling face, the stallion not flinching an inch it was stopped. A glimmering grid of electric blue hexagons formed over the point of impact, or rather being revealed to the naked eye for the first time. An energy shield, flexing ever so slightly against his hoofs force but denying it even touching Sam's coat. Sam's smile grew into a grin and he gave him a wink as the field faded once more.

"See? Aint the age we live in wonderful? That fields strong enough to stop a low caliber bullet, and even after it breaks it'll recharge in a few minutes."
>> No. 40594185
File 140844537294.png - (416.53KB , 709x1051 , blue_guy_by_annasko-d6si7zi (1).png )
Umi pauses, tilting his head. Once again, the childlike wonder breaks through, the stallion tapping Jet's forehead a few times, clearly baffled. "How...why...where..." He seems to run out of single word questions, choosing to just push against the forcefield, gently.

"Okay. This. I don't know what it is, but I feel like it's something important. Do all operators have this?"
>> No. 40594186
File 140844551725.jpg - (56.62KB , 252x299 , 11i0obq.jpg )
Sam shook his head, still smiling as a soft chuckle emerged from him, Umi's hoof actually touching his forehead this time as the field did not register it as an attack. The stallions head rocking back and forth softly.

"Hexagon Shield unit, it's an augment I had installed a while back. I may not look it but I'm stuffed full of augments, I just don't like ones that show up outside my body. Make me feel less like well... A pony, I've only got two that you can see the parts for."
>> No. 40594311
File 140845961553.png - (901.02KB , 3316x3001 , Murderbird.png )
Krieg looked at the new pony who'd found camaraderie with Umi. "Shields, huh? Never really had a chance to use 'em myself yet. Then again, if someone takes a shot at me, chances are they're not gonna get the chance for a second one."

She takes a swig of whiskey and a drag of her cigar before holding out her mechanical claw. "Name's Krieg."
>> No. 40594312
File 140845992363.jpg - (16.09KB , 319x279 , 7vKjDLy.jpg )

The pony responded happily taking the metallic claw in a far more natural but no less firm grip of his own. He moved his head from his conversation with his new friend to speak to this figure. She and Umi had been talking anyway, so it was rude not to converse. Even if... In a place like this and a griffon like her. Jet really wasn't sure how much trust he could put in this person. Espeially if she knew the bounty attached to that name.

"They come in handy. I don't use guns too much so they help me get up close in the first place."
>> No. 40594313
File 140846026230.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg smirks, "Eh, guns are fun, but nothing beats a good ol' fashioned brawl."

She makes a fist with her mechanical claw, the knuckle spikes sliding out and locking in place with a metallic click, "Had these babies custom made a couple weeks ago. They'll go right through kevlar, and being in a mechanical arm, I have an excuse for tripping metal detectors."
>> No. 40594314
He winced at the sight of that, but couldn't help but smile grimly at the sight of the brutal tools of death.

"Yeowch, those are nasty looking. Did you have your arms amputated specially for these or had you already lost them?"

He asked, curious. He himself had an augment he had considered getting many a time, bu ti would require him to amputate his hoof and that was something he was still struggling to come to terms with.
>> No. 40594316
File 140846068883.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg shakes her head. "Nah, lost it shielding my face from a grenade back in the war. Took a little getting used to, not being able to feel things with it, but it's no problem for me now. Plus, the spikes've helped me out against more than a few Lone Star bastards."
>> No. 40594319
He nodded grimly, frowning a little at the news of her losing her arm.

"War? I'm sorry I'm not from this continent let alone Equestria. I've grown up a bit cut off from the news from here. Which war do you mean?"
>> No. 40594321
File 140846101300.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
She takes another swig and a puff. "The big one, the secession war. RSNM hired me as a merc. When it was over, I took my money and split. No need to stay and let 'em read what I actually did."
>> No. 40594423
File 140846907409.jpg - (351.92KB , 842x1233 , study.jpg )
Figures were stirring out of her peripheral vision, vague things that groaned and shuffled like the undead. Eska had no time for that, the quill that had achieved life of its own requiring her full attention. She didn't even have time for her own thoughts, like the bubbling giddiness underneath, or the persistently cold pain of the welts that had formed across her chest and sides. She had just the stony exterior of someone in a deep concentration, head so close to the pages that her nose became her cursor; there was practically an audible *ting* of a typewriter as she went to the next line.
Her magictype may have been illigible, but in the moment, that didn't even seem to register. She was a brilliant scientist, and every stroke of her pen was gold.

The world was gone, so it was rather alarming when a familiar voice peeped through. Eska's pen faltered for the first time, and she found herself looking up wide-eyed at the ungainly creature who was peering over her shoulder in a vaguely creepy manner.
Words, words, she was supposed to say something. He wasn't either, and a staring match of a few seconds began. Impatient, she craned her neck and leaned in quickly for a peck on the cheek, so quick in fact that it seemed more dismissive than inviting, just a recognition of existence. She slightly tilted her book in his direction, a quick and sketchy diagram of something -- though it looked cell-like in structure -- on one page, and presumably an explanation on the other, and that was all the acknowledgement she made as she continued to scribble, rasping against the parchment hurriedly.

Last edited at Tue, Aug 19th, 2014 10:32

>> No. 40594660
File 140847833355.png - (18.18KB , 304x274 , zebra7.png )
Oh. Yes, of course, that explained everything, Farasi decided after his brief glimpse of the book was cut short and he was left to stare at the spot it had previously occupied in blank confusion.

A hoof idly rubbed at the good cheek she had so brusquely pecked. Quick as it might have been, the physical contact sparked a bit of warmth in him. Not enough to keep from being overridden by the bitter cold, but that was life. He blinked owlishly with his long, asymmetrical face drawn taut, only now deciding to shift his gaze to continue following her darting quill. It was a lost cause, given that even if he could read the words he probably couldn't understand them -- it was probably medical stuff, he shouldn't have slept through biology -- but it kept his mind off of what was lingering in his chest.

Was she feeling the same thing? Farasi's wandering eye slid down her form, wondering if her injuries had the exact same sensation. It was a bit familiar to him, eerily similar in a way to the paralysingly cold claw of the Wendigo. At least, he thought so. Should he mention it? He was a bit preoccupied with his maiming to focus on how his blood seemed to chill as it flowed out onto the snow, but the unnatural numbness was hard to forget.

No, surely not, he decided as he quietly leaned against the wall. His focus returned to Eska's hurrying pen, and he set about trying in vain to read the scribbles. If he had to guess, it might be something related to the cloning pods, but that was all it was -- a guess. Maybe he'd get it eventually.
>> No. 40595019
File 140849239916.png - (45.58KB , 676x112 , huh 3.png )
>Rolling onto her side and then managing to prop herself up against a nearby wall, Carnage fished about her person to produce a crumpled pack of smokes from which she plucked out a single coffin nail.

>As she light up, she watched with distant eyes as Farasi and Eska boldly expressed their affection towards one another. Something which she had always found odd - that ease with which the members of her group expressed themselves so easily towards one another. Frost did something very similar with Sam despite her cold outlook on the world. They snuggled, kissed, held close to one another... all these things she herself had never experienced and looked so alien to her. What did they feel like?

>Sucking on the cigarette in her mouth, Carnage recalled how she'd confessed to Frost the reason behind all her actions but knew they did not convey what she felt, not entirely in any ways. The only two who ever could communicate with her entirely had been Flip and the Old Man - both of which had disappeared; leaving her alone.

>Silently she watched the members of her group gathered in Wreckingball's office - her red eyes prying through their motions for meaning. But no matter how hard she looked, she could not understand. Love... romantically inclined actions were a thing far beyond her.
>> No. 40595148
File 140850172012.png - (576.89KB , 1345x1345 , Another pic.png )
"Hexagon shield unit..." And the stallion's wish list grew a bit more. How many things were there, that he could acquire? Well, questions seemed effective. Might as well ask more!

"So...these augments. I'm guessing they're pricey, right? If I may ask? What would you say is the first augment an operator should get? And what are they, exactly? I mean, what do they do? How do they work?"
>> No. 40595165
File 140850414680.jpg - (26.15KB , 500x321 , 1162.jpg )
"What you did?" Sam asked, one ear flopping down as he inspected her. Seeming to size her up as he considered her words a moment before shaking his head softly...

"Sorry, sorry, none of my bees wax."

Sam chuckled a little. "Well they're exactly what they say they are, augments. Mechanized upgrades for you body. You go in, have surgery to have them put in and come out better than you where before. They are pretty pricey though yeah, that shield unit was nearly 10,000 credits. And as for the first augment you should get as an operator...?"

Sam paused, seeming to consider things for a few moments. There where plenty of augments that had helped him survive, but honestly... The most important ones he'd seen so far where the quality of life ones.... Yeah, that was the most important one.

"I'd have to say MMCS, it's a pretty cheap one. It's a communications device installed in your jaw and ear that lets you talk with your team easily no matter what the distance. Pretty much it's like having a phone installed in your head."
>> No. 40595181
File 140850499072.png - (416.53KB , 709x1051 , blue_guy_by_annasko-d6si7zi (1).png )
"Phone?" Oh! That thing on the wall that his boss usually swore at, after it set off a racket! Those were annoying. Why would he want one of those? Wait. Communication. He nods, starting to understand what Jet was saying.

"And for survivability? I can't imagine I have much of it. Hell, these things are mostly for intimidation, back home. Most of the headsmen have some kind of armor that is more ceremonial then useful. Ten thousand credits...what about armor? Not armor inside my, or like that shield, but good old fashioned armor? Or at least as close to old fashioned as you can get in this town."
>> No. 40595191
File 140850583818.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
She shrugs, passing it off as no big deal. "I was a bit too... enthusiastic with the prisoners. I mean, I got the information outta them, but most of them weren't doing real well after I was done with 'em."

She sighs, "But, that's not me anymore. Yeah, I kill. And yeah, I get a thrill out of it, but I don't torture anymore. I'm quick with them."
>> No. 40595198
File 140850611002.jpg - (1.18MB , 1920x1080 , 39692_league_of_legends_rengar.jpg )
"There's plenty on the market. Most of my team wears big heavy vests. There's proper full on armor as well, I've been thinking of picking some of that up eventually, but for the moment a basic bullet proof vest does the job for me. When it comes to augments..."

He looked down and patted his chest. "I've got augs that restart my heart should I start getting close to death, and my bloods full of tiny robots that start fixing me up whenever I'm hurt. And alongside my shield, I've got this."

He held up his arm, and a classic, knight shield shaped field appeared in front of it, far thicker than the shield over his entire form, it actually looked solid.

"... Oh." He said, lip curling up in disgust before he simply turned away from her, looking to Umi. Torture, torture was something he could not and would not ever abide. But he wasn't looking for a fight tonight.

"It best not be."
>> No. 40595200
File 140850625669.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
She nods, looking down at her glass. "I was a different person back then. Someone I'm never going to let myself become again."
>> No. 40595205
...Yyyeah, it's right about now that Suave returns from his bathroom break. Things seemed to be going downhill, and fast. As he sits down and pours himself another shot, he starts muttering to himself, loud enough for most everyone around him to hear.

"...Mmmgh, sometimes, Kreig..."

"Yeaah, Ah'd damn well hope. Sometimes, y'all ferget what tha hell yer act'ally doin'. 'S somethin' that makes me wanna kick a puppy."

He looks at Umi, taking interest. "...Y'know, Ah haven't seen much, but Ah bet'cha that ya can custom order somethin'. Can't be too damn hard to make, Ah reckon. But me? Ah'd buy it; shit looks badass, if ya ask me. Fear's one helluva thing ta have on the battlefield, too."

He grabs his full shot glass, and looks up and across the bar. Noting his disgruntled appearance, he decided not to say much right off the bat.
>> No. 40595207
File 140850699605.jpg - (397.17KB , 2500x2100 , Armor.jpg )
She raises an eyebrow as she takes a swig. "Sometimes? When have you seen me draw it out? I may use firepower and force bordering on excessive, but I make a quick kill."
>> No. 40595212
File 140850752203.jpg - (480.04KB , 1304x1304 , blue_stallion_commish_by_annasko-d5lyq37.jpg )
"...I..." He leans forward, tapping the shield lightly. "I...what. Okay. So, stuff in your blood. A shield that covers you, this thing, and a vest that blocks gunfire? I need to start saving...and get a couple jobs."

The stallion flips a few bits onto the counter, to pay for his drinks. Mentally tallying how many sides of questionable meat he's going to have to hack up and feed to the masses, to afford any kind of augments. A single good job would be nice, though he doubted that was on the horizon, unless Jet was serious about the possibility of him joining up with the crew he was in. Could they use a new operator?

"Custom orders? Who do I talk to about those? I mean. I'd love to get something, anything really. I just don't want to catch a bullet in the chest, during my first mission."
>> No. 40595217
File 140850776186.png - (135.31KB , 386x367 , jetstream_pony_by_conmanwolf-d7ruhrw.png )
Sam nodded, relaxing a tad as he turned to give her a short nod.

"At least you're putting work into changing."

The hge stallion, on par in height with Umi, gave him a nod, and a disarmingly friendly smile.

"Hey there."

"Well the vest was only 500, if you really need one, hell I'll foot the bill for that.. Tell you what, how about I contact my girlfriend now and ask her if we could use another hoof for the next job?"
>> No. 40595220
Suave just grumbles a bit, pulling the tip of his hat down over his eyes as he shakes his head.

"Ah better not say anythin', Ah suppose," he says, right before raising his shot glass and gulping it down. "An' don't go peckin' at it, neither. There's a reason Ah ain't sayin' nothin'. 'Sides, you of all griffons know Ah've got a helluva lot ta say."

"...Though, Ah guess a hearty chunk of it's actually pretty good, after thinkin' 'bout it."

He looks at Umi with one of his eyes, and you can see a light smile on his face. "Black market's one crazy ass place, son. You can find damn near anythin' if you look long enough, an' ask 'round. This club here is pro'ly tha best place ta go searchin', too -- need anythin', like intel, a woman, a hookup, you can find it 'ere. An', if ya can't find anythin' yerself, which Ah doubt ya won't, ya can ask me. I'm willin ta bet Ah can find it, given enough time."

He starts pouring himself another shot, letting out a sigh. "...But, it's up to you if you wanna trust some crazy ass ol' coot who's pro'ly got more bullets than he does brain cells. That's a decision you'll have ta make a lot in this business, so keep yer wits about ya."

He returns the friendly smile himself, bumping his hat up an inch. After looking between the two and raising an eyebrow, he speaks back in a relatively soft voice.

"Ya jus' missed me earlier, looks like. Name's Suave. You with tha new guy here?"
>> No. 40595225
File 140850826623.png - (104.31KB , 900x817 , Smiling.png )
Krieg gives a small smile. "I've not done it since the war, all those years ago. I keep my kills quick. Messy, but quick."
She takes a puff of her cigar and blows out a smoke ring "I've yet to have a fair fight though. Those Lone Star assholes, they're grossly under-equipped and under-trained to me."
She nods. "I know you do, but there's a time and a place, and I understand that. And you know that aside from the almost-dying and the whole getting-shot-at thing, it's fun."
>> No. 40595231
File 140850853446.png - (330.98KB , 720x851 , How bored can I be_.png )
"Sure! To the call part...if I get anything from you, or anypony else, they're getting paid back. Where I'm from, accepting things like that is on level with begging for mercy."

He gives a sheepish smile, and a shrug of his shoulders. "Besides. This armor should keep me good, for at least a mission or two. I hope..."

"Well, those all sound good. Intel would be nice. Don't need a woman. I mean...not until I start living in a place that's passable...and have some bits. To be honest, all of this is kind of moot, until I have some bits. That's the great missing part of the equation, isn't it? Heh. Give me a few weeks to get my hooves under me, now that I've found this place, and I'll probably be miles ahead of where I am now."
>> No. 40595254
File 140851019142.gif - (2.30MB , 475x232 , 5_SurvingIgnite.gif )
"Sam, nice to meetcha Suave. And no I'm not. Just bumped into him and got chatting." His smile turned into a grin - a grin that really belonged in a toothpase commercial because by celestia *it actually sparkled* as the stallion offered a hoof to him. Sam had something of an eastern accent, Hong Prong or Tokyow, something like that.

"Are you from further south?"

He nodded. He always felt a little sorry for the lone star mooks he was sent against to slaughter.

"A lot of them are just kids, or blokes trying to make a little money for their family. Doesn't stop me if they're in my way. But I still feel pretty sorry for them."

Sam chuckled. "Well I'd hope so, I don't just 'hand out' money too people I barely know Umi. But I don't want you dying on your first job. Can't exactly pay me back then anyway can you?" As ever, the stallion had that friendly, jovial smile on his face, as if there was nothing wrong in the world. At least not for him. "But me and my crew get into very dangerous spots pretty often, if you're gonna run a few jobs with us you're gonna need some more gear than what you've got right now. So how about this? I hook you up with a... A starter package! Balaclava, Vest and MMCS, all the basics an operator should have on them. That's a total of around three thousand credits. Now we make far more than that on every job, so you can pay me right back from the cut from your first job with us."
>> No. 40595260
File 140851114094.png - (30.85KB , 200x200 , Untitled-1.png )
"Well, I don't really need the balaclava. Those are the face masks, right? I still have my old mask, from when I was still taking heads. It's a bit worn, but it does it's job, and hides everything except my eyes. I might need a roll of tape, or something that can hide my cutie mark...And the MMCS? That's the one that acts like a phone, right? I mean, i don't need the mask, but three thousand sounds like a fair deal, for making sure I live. Plus, if what you say is true, then i won't be in debt for long."
>> No. 40595263

He throws his shot down the hatch and lets out a breath, shaking his head and chuckling.

"...Y'know, as shameful as it is, Ah can't say nothin' against that.

"Well, that's the whole reason ya came here, innit? Money? A life? Heheheh, Ah know 'swhut Ah came here fer, an' Ah'll be damned if Ah didn't come to just tha right place."

He smiles, turning to face Umi. "Ah like you, son. Ya got spirit. Not many people do, nowadays. Don't you dare let that slip! That, an' ya don't sound like yer a borin' slab of concrete ta talk to, unlike most o' tha folk Ah know. Lemme know if ya ever need a drink. Ah'd be glad ta help."

After a beat, his smile wilts, and he looks over his shoulder. "...An', no, Krieg, Ah wasn't talkin' 'bout you. You might be built like a rock, but ya ain't borin' in the slightest. 'Specially back home."

He blinks, a bit surprised at the dazzle. Someone who doesn't look like they're going to tear off your limbs for drug money? Now, this is someone he'd like to work with!

He chuckles a bit, nodding. "Southwest a' here's where Ah'm from. Born 'n' raised, jus' like daddy was," he says proudly, pouring another shot of whiskey. "But Ah'm surprised Ah turned out as scrawny as Ah am, concernin' pa's build." As soon as he finishes his sentence, he slides the shot glass down the bar straight to Sam.

It was noticeable how feeble Suave really was; he was, no doubt, much smaller than most other stallions around. You'd be able to label him a three-quarter of a stallion, if even that.
>> No. 40595266
File 140851182461.jpg - (26.15KB , 500x321 , 1162.jpg )
"Yep. Your face mask should do just fine, so that makes it 2.5 grand. There's a few real cheap augments that come in handy that you can check out when we head to the docs to get the MMCS put in. Or while we're here I can grab you a club lucius special. That's one of these." He said, tightening his own long coat around himself. "If the gang likes you, club lucius will even monogram on our insignia for you. It's only 500 creds for the coat. So... Honestly I'd say it's a good thing to pick up. They're good sturdy clothes too, this ones lasted me a lot better than my old leather jacket did."

And beside Umi and Sam, a pair of giants among stallions, he truly looked tiny, almost like a foal beside the two who towered over most others. But that didn't seem to affect the way Sam looked at him, the stallion didn't seem patronizing at all. No, in fact he seemed one of a rare few who gave respect, rather than expecting it. He considered all his equal upon meeting them.

"Well look at me." He said, chuckling a little as he took the shot gratefully and slugged it down. "By the time he died, my father barely came up to my shoulders. Genetics is a funny thing my friend. And umn, sorry but just a moment, need to make a call."

As Sam spoke, he fiddled with his wrist mount, he'd long since combined the two for his AMind and MMCS and adjusted the settings, sending a call through to his beloved Snowflake. Hoping she wasn't busy, or asleep, or doing... things. Because for once, Sam wanted to talk business with her. A rare thing for the stallion but right now. Well he wanted his new giant friend in the gang as soon as possible.

"Snowy?" He said, looking down at his drained shot glass, speaking to the air.
>> No. 40595273
File 140851325802.png - (773.70KB , 1181x1198 , manpretty.png )
"Hmm...the special seems good...can we throw one of those in, as well? It seems a lot smarter then having to rip tape off my flank. And a lot less irritating." He chuckles softly, before nodding to the bar tender, and stretching slowly.

"So, how does this all work? How do I find out if I'm tagging along?" That was the question that had been nagging him. How did he find out? Would a pony show up at work and tell him? Would he meet them here? Was there a secret code? And then there was the other question. "How do i get that augmentation, too?"

"Heh. Well, a life less dull then what I was living. There's no fun in staying in one place forever, is there?" He smiles a bit, before continuing. "I spent enough time around ponies with nothing to say. I wasn't a talkative one wither. Still not one, really. A bit of drink does wonders, doesn't it?" He shrugs, before lapsing into silence. Alcohol really made him more talkative. Usually it was just quiet mumbles, or a grunt or two of affirmation, when asked if he heard an order.
>> No. 40595276
File 140851351284.gif - (2.36MB , 475x232 , 3_StealingBaron.gif )
"Going backwards, when we're done here I'll take you to our guy, he'll put the MMCS in for you. It's a pretty simple easy procedure. As for how we'll grab you. Once you have the MMCS I'll add you to our chat group and just call you when we've got a job coming up or anyone wants to meet up with you." He waved the bartender over, speaking a few short words to him before the bartender swiftly returned with a long coat, same size as Sams own and tossed it to Umi as Sam paid him. "And finally, for the the coat. There you go."
>> No. 40595285
For once, Suave's expressions betrayed him; he actually liked this guy, and it showed. He had a genuine smile on his face, and he seemed much more relaxed than he was when the conversation started. Although, part of that is probably due to the whiskey which would be hitting him like a wrecking ball any time now.

"Well, 'funny thing' is an understatement, if ya ask me. But, take yer time. Don't let me distract ya. There're more important things."

As he waits for the stallion to finish his phone call, he turns to Umi. "Everythin' ya jus' said was damn right. There were more'n a few reasons I moved out, an' not feelin' alive was one of 'em, no doubt. An', as fun as the city life was in its own ways, can't help but feel... Uneasy, sometimes. Too much of a change-a-pace from tha country life. Then again, who am I ta talk? You sound like yer gonna be neck-deep in shock pretty quick here, an' ta be frank, Ah'm a little jealous."

He looks at the coat for a moment, and gives it a quick lookover. As he inspects it, his curiosity gets the better of him.

"...Y'all 're hirin', Ah take it?"
>> No. 40595289
File 140851465678.jpg - (480.04KB , 1304x1304 , blue_stallion_commish_by_annasko-d5lyq37.jpg )
Umi blinks, slipping into the coat, and working to hide his axe within it. A bit of work later, and the blade is concealed. Umi looks at himself, in the mirror over the bar, nodding lightly. He picks up his pauldrons, having removed them to put the coat on, and slips them back on. He may have looked like a bad goth kid, but he felt naked without the worn leather armor. "This is nice...and it's pretty warm..."

"This place has all been a shock to me, to be honest. I went from as simple of a life as you can have, to, well, this city. I moved into this area, because it seemed like everypony lives here anyway. What could go wrong, right? I hack meat of questionable quality, for questionable ponies, while living above the shop. Bright side. I can reach out of the shower and stir my eggs in the morning..." He smiles and shrugs, before sitting back, now sporting a new coat.
>> No. 40595293
File 140851490607.jpg - (5.27KB , 225x224 , Jadis2.jpg )

Farasi came with words, awkward words that felt very out of place for the moment. Soon to be dismissed by a gentle peck by the mechanic. It was a fascinating phenomenon, one that, to her slight discomfort, reminded her a great deal of her sister, when she got into one of those moods. Pouring over her writings, drawing up those intricate seals and symbols. Of course, her work was much more scattered, given Chill's distinct lack of organizational skills. It was always so odd, seeing those arcane notes spread about her awful attempts at hip hop. Whatever the case, the memory did not last long. There are a few who still needed to come, and her head became filled with the voice of one of those ponies. Leaning her cold, aching self back in the couch, Frost responded soon after.

"Jet? Where are you? We are having a group meeting soon...think you can make it?"

Down to business for the moment. Direct and to the point. Such was often the case between them. They always did find the time for the simpler things, though for now there was much to discuss, and even more to do. She let her smile fade for a second, looking more distant than she actually was from the room around her. Slowly, she ran her metal leg across the scaly part of her chest. Hidden underneath her clothing. A habit she had developed recently, and one that was likely to stay. Eagerly awaiting his response.
>> No. 40595297
File 140851559311.jpg - (16.71KB , 426x240 , 295202_2960460979846_1511208836_32748167_73165629_n.jpg )
Sam's voice was casual and friendly as usual. The powerful stallions tones verbally hugging her making it clear as ever he was glad to hear her voice regardless of whether or not he said. Which he didn't, despite his tone he was indeed straight to business. Getting to the point.

"Got a guy here who's looking for work, nice, my size and an expert with an axe. I'm buying him a few things to help him get on his feet as an Operator and we're wondering if he can join the sickles, at least for a few jobs. That all right?"
>> No. 40595298
Suave shrugs, taking a moment to stare at his glass. Perhaps what you just said struck an odd cord with Suave, judging by the blank look on his face. Or maybe it's just that the whiskey is finally getting to him. It's hard to tell.

"...Well, y' gotta take tha good with tha bad, Ah suppose. Make tha best of it. You'll pro'ly get used ta it. Somewhat. Ah know how ya feel; back where Ah came from, ya can talk ta anyone. Everyone knew everythin' 'bout'cha, whether ya told 'em yerself 'r not. Now? Nobody knows anythin', an' most of tha time, it's good ta keep it that way. As much of a shame as it is, Ah've gotten used ta it."
>> No. 40595299
File 140851613493.png - (30.85KB , 200x200 , Untitled-1.png )
"Heh, back home, I was known. For good or bad, I was known. Then I came here, and the only ones that knew me were the ones buying what I was selling. It's odd. Back home, ponies with my profession are celebrities. They're cherished by the clans, and revered as warriors and figureheads. Here, if I told anypony I used to deal out the lord's justice, I think they would just laugh, and then ignore me. It's weird..."

Umi fidgets with the hem of his cloak, thinking quietly, for a moment, before speaking once more.

"So, where are you from? I've been talking about myself all night, but I barely know anything about you."
>> No. 40595300
File 140851638743.jpg - (22.62KB , 236x340 , Soviet art.jpg )

Despite how direct the conversation was, his friendly demeanor seemed to survive the transition. It was nice, and she enjoyed her conversations with him. More often than not. Though at his words, she could not help but raise a brow and tilt her head. He often did make friends fast.

"You sure he can be trusted? That is my big concern with any new blood right now. We do need some extra heads though..."

Frost erred on the side of caution in these matters. Their bounties may be far less considerable, but it was still enough to make interaction of any sort a considerable risk. She would also need to speak with him about being too generous. Though, of course, generosity carried its own rewards...

"How much have you told him about us?"
>> No. 40595301
File 140851693167.gif - (2.45MB , 475x232 , Hey pardner, your days about to go bad.gif )
"Nothing besides that we're an operator crew. The reason I think we can trust him is he's not from new canterlot, he's new in town, came from some little village in the far east, natural area nothing like the hive cities. If I thought he knew the first thing about the bounty I'd have never made the offer, but I really don't think he does. I'm a pretty good judge of character, I think. I saw the good in you before anyone else in the crew did after all~."
>> No. 40595302
He raises an eyebrow at Umi as he speaks, intrigued. Wherever he's from must be... Really, really behind, or just ridiculously religious like those tribal buffalo Suave had seen back home. But, upon being asked about himself, he figures it would be rude to deny, and continues on.

"Oh, me? Ah'm from the west. Grew up on a farm with tha family. Back-breakin' work from dawn ta dusk, since ma 'n' pa couldn't afford no tools, 'r fancy machines ta do werk for 'em. Though, Ah guess Ah wasn't outside on the field much like mah brothers. I was a scrawny little turd, an' mama always told me ta stay inside an' help 'er. Got a lot of advice from mama, Ah tell you whut. Even though she was more crazy an' unpredictable than a chariot with three wheels half tha time."

Suave looks up at his leather cowboy hat for a moment, suddenly remembering he actually had something on his head. "...Oh, an' this used ta be pa's. Ma gave it ta me when Ah went back ta visit not too long ago. Gave me 'is ol' revolver, too. Thing makes some mighty fine music, if Ah do say so mahself."
>> No. 40595303
Umi nods, listening to Suave, quietly. Quite a story, and interesting as well. Umi takes a moment, as he seemed likely to due, before speaking. "Your mother seems like quite a kind, and loving pony. And from our chats, she raised a well mannered, and professional stallion. Any choice advice stick with you, over the years? A phrase, or quote of some kind?" These cultures were fascinating! Umi was quickly finding himself interested in learning more about the lands others came from. The west, the east, the far east...Canterlot seemed to have most everything.
>> No. 40595304
"A quote? From mama? Oooohohoo, boy, where do Ah start..?"

He takes a moment to think, running various things through his mind. "...Welp, a lot of it's gonna sound dumber'n a second coat of paint, at first, but if ya think 'bout it, it's actually some pretty damn good advice. Let's see here... Mama says never to use a toaster, standin' in the shower... Don't hold yer breath fer longer'n an hour... Don't eat anythin' bigger'n yer head... "

He quietly hums as he keeps listing off quotes, thinking hard. "...What you believe in is all you really are... If you got doubts, you ain't alone; it just means you're ready ta go... Don't buy no chandelier if you ain't got a ceilin'... Don't butter toast before you toast it... If yer gonna buy new horseshoes, make sure they fit..."

"...Oh, an' mah favorite's one that rhymes. It don't matter if yer a king 'r a clown. Once ya drive up a mountain, ya can't back down."

Last edited at Wed, Aug 20th, 2014 00:05

>> No. 40595305
File 140851889341.png - (732.43KB , 822x1024 , product_zps92f0474d.png )
Umi listens,head tilted slightly. There certainly were a lot of quotes. Wait, was that a repeat? Eh, still a good one. And that last quote... Was he in a similar position? He was driving up a mountain right now, learning a new land, and new customs. If he backed down, what would he be? It may have been a completely misinterpretation, but to Umi, he drew comfort and courage from Suave's quotes.

"Thank you. Really. Your mother is a wise woman, and I thank you for sharing her words with me."
>> No. 40595308
He nods. "Thank ya. Really. Not many folk 're willin' ta listen ta me an' mah ramblin'. Nice ta see someone with open ears, rather'n an open mouth. By the moon, we have too many open mouths in this city. An' they sink a helluva lot more than ships!"

He chuckles a bit, sliding his bottle away from him. He was done for the night. "...Now, Ah probably missed a couple hund'rd, but still. 'S a lot of tha things that seem obvious and simple that really ain't. Nothin' a sharp mind an' a sharp wit won't take care of, most o' tha time. It's worked fer me! Heheh, it's worked damn well fer me."

Tonight was a good night, and it showed. A friendly crowd, nice drinks, an a new friend, all on top of a recent pile of money. This is what Suave came here for, no doubt.
>> No. 40595309
File 140851963882.png - (230.28KB , 500x500 , That guy.png )

Frost smiled at that, vain enough to enjoy the flattery that he was offering, though sober minded enough to consider what he was saying. Another far easterner. She wondered if Eska would take to him the way she took to Sam. Not that they could not use the extra muscle, though there would need to be rules and boundaries. The very same she had imposed upon another, now that she thought of it. A certain dragon, and a loyal friend who was also curiously absent from the meeting. She would need to send him a message as well, but for now, she simply stroked at her chest, speaking in a thoughtful tone as she replied back to him.

"Noted on that...we do need the help. I would need to speak with him first though. You can as well. We keep it simple, we keep it professional...maybe take him out on a run or two, like you said, and see how he handles himself. Not before I meet with him first though. But only if you are absolutely sure..."
>> No. 40595314
Umi was in very much the same position. He had come here for friendship, and to possibly find a job, and it seems he had managed both of them! This was shaping up into a very, very good night. He had met two, possibly three, friends. He had found a potential job, and found a way to get outfitted for it. A good night indeed.
>> No. 40595318
File 140852034753.jpg - (53.38KB , 457x500 , gXOtKdR.jpg )
"Understood. I'm going to be taking him to the doc to get an MMCS put in for him, get him started regardless of whether or not he ends up working for us. Meet you at [Address of Long Tooths Diner] When you're done with the meeting, I'll bring him so you two can meet and greet. Shoot me a message when your on your way, for now I think he's getting lonely. Love you frosty."

Signing off after he let her bid her farewells, the stallion finally looked back up at his two companions, the near blank, thoughtful expression on his face being replaced by that bright lively smile once again.

"They're actually very nice coats. Surprising considering we get them from the bar, but they're fantastic quality." Sam paid his bill, and seemed to be preparing to leave.

It looked just like the coat Sam wore, dark brown leather and with plenty a pocket. Though Sams had a simple cloth badge of two crossed sickles with a 7 under them stitched onto the shoulder of his.

"Can't really say..." He said, cocking his head at the mans question. Fromw hat he'd said it'd sounded like he was already in a crew. "Marefriends the one who decides that. I'm just tryin' to help Umi here out. Hopefully she likes him." Sam grinned at Umi "Course he's yet to gimme a reason not too." He said teasingly. "So soon, I'm sure he'll be a full blown operator, slumming it with the best of us."
>> No. 40595343
"Heheheh. No kiddin'..."

He pauses for a moment, looking at his half-empty bottle. After a beat, he looks back up at the two, offering a light smile. "...Well, tonight's been one great ass night. Ya didn't know this, but I jus' got done with pro'ly the most successful, an' undoubtedly tha highest payin' heist I've ever been ta. Ah'm glad ta have ran inta ya -- it made my day jus' that much better, knowin' there are actually decent folk 'round here ta talk ta."

"But, as fer a job. Ah already have a job, as Ah kinda... Implied, earlier. But! That don't mean Ah ain't willin' ta work overtime. Ah take it that it's kinda... Tight-knit? Hard ta get inta?"
>> No. 40595359
File 140852441858.png - (773.70KB , 1181x1198 , manpretty.png )
"It feels pretty high quality...I like it!" The stallion smiles, marveling at how well it hides a giant axe. "So, what's next? How do I get the phone thing?" He tilts his head, watching the bartender clear away his mugs. That was a decent wonder his tongue was loosened as much as it was.

"Heh, well, congratulations! I hope you have many more in the future." The pegasus stretches, before sliding off the stool, shaking his head, and taking a few slow steps. Okay. He was buzzed. Still balanced and coherent. That was good. He offers Suave a hoof, smiling up at the stallion on the stool.

"It was great meeting you. I hope you get to see al you've wanted to see, man."
>> No. 40595391
File 140852825296.jpg - (31.73KB , 600x260 , 1298450025.jpg )
"Is that so?" Sam said, beaming at the kind words. "Well tell you what Suave, I work at a - well... The only, sushi place in middle Canterlot as a chef during the day. Ask around and I'm sure you'll find it in no time. Come see me there some time!" Sam stood up properly, rolling his neck. Not that he was standing he truly did tower over the small stallion. "And as for the crew... Yeah, pretty tough, we've only had two permanent additions to the crew since we formed, one of them worked for us not with us, the others an orphan we picked up out of the gutter we've been lookin' after. Haven't really had any new members of the crew itself. So we'll have to see how things go for Umi here, as for yourself...." He shrugged, "If you're competent enough, we could proably use the help some time, an extra hoof can go a long way for a job or two."

He copied Umi by taking a good long stretch.

"Can I get your number in case we ever need another hoof? And before I go - you've got me curious, what was the job?"

"We're headin' two my doc Umi, guy who installs augments for us. You'll probably be put under for a little while, no more than half an hour. I'll be around to make sure there's no funny business though. So don't worry."
>> No. 40595401
He reaches forward, shaking Umi's hoof firmly. "...Ah've already seen all Ah've wanted ta, an' more! Holy shit, today's been a great day."

With that, he grabs what's left of his bottle, and stands up himself. He has to arch his neck a little to look up at Umi and Sam. "Now, Ah come 'round here a lot -- think Ah might see ya now an' again, son? Sometimes Ah just need a drinkin' buddy. 'S... Umi, right?"

He nods. "Sure, Ah'll come stop by now an' again, if'n Ah ever get tha chance. Ah'm a busy man, like everyone else, but Ah can find time."

As he listens to how tight the recruitment schedule is, he looks a little disappointed, but not totally disheartened. "Ah, all right. Ah get it. Well, what Ah was 'bout ta offer wasn't exactly the whole package. Ah'm jus' gonna stick this out here..."

He grabs a napkin from the bar, pulls out a pen, and starts scribbling down his name and phone number. "...Mmkay. Sam, you an' yer gang ever need a hoof, lemme know. Ah'm light on my hooves, an' Ah take pride in mah buttered words. Oh, an' Ah like ta think Ah'm a good marksman, even though Ah'm tootin' mah own horn. Just bought an amazin' new suppressed rifle with the payout Ah got. Got a whole package with it, too, so if you ever need someone undercover or fer backup, Ah'm yer man."

He pauses a bit, and thinks a moment. "...An', 'bout mah last job? Ah don't think Ah can't tell ya whut Ah did -- not only would you not believe me, but also Ah think it's best ta keep it classified. Fer now. Y'know how it goes. But, Ah got a feelin' you've pro'ly read 'bout it already."

"...But Ah can tell ya tha payout me an' the gang got. But yer gonna hav'ta take mah word fer it, 'cause it's unbelievable."
>> No. 40595404
Sam couldn't help but grin as the man spoke, he had a sneaking suspicion just what their job had been. He wasn't dumb, and knew whoever their benefactors where they had hired another operator crew to help them out when they made their way to the upper city. He'd never seen them but he knew they where there nontheless. Stopping his grin and moving it back to a more restrained smile he nodded his head. Taking the napkin and putting it in his breast pocket.

"Go on..."
>> No. 40595405
Suave leans in a bit closer, and lets out in a low mutter...

"Six. Hund'rd. Thousand."

After this, he pulls back, and the cowboy has the widest shit-eatin' grin one could ever soup up at a moment's notice.
>> No. 40595407
File 140852967639.png - (598.38KB , 3000x5007 , Back Smirking.png )
Krieg, having been sitting back and listening, just throws back another shot. "And I'll be damned if it wasn't easy money."
>> No. 40595409

"..." Sam leaned in and whispered to him after a few moments, not seeming amazed just... Interested.

"Where you the crew who blew up the building by the entrance to upper canterlot then huh?"
>> No. 40595411
Suave starts chuckling in a deep voice, nodding.

"...Heheheh, eeyup... Did that... Pretty much hijacked a plane... An' a whole lot more even Ah can't believe after that. Ah could go on, but Ah won't. All Ah can say is that Ah'm lovin' this job, an' Ah'm lovin' this life," he says, adjusting his hat as he looks up.
>> No. 40595413
File 140853035925.jpg - (1.18MB , 1920x1080 , 39692_league_of_legends_rengar.jpg )
Sam laughed and offered his hoof.

"Well then I have to thank you! You guys provided a distraction to get me and mine into upper canterlot for our job."
>> No. 40595414
File 140853041428.jpg - (397.17KB , 2500x2100 , Armor.jpg )
She takes another puff of her cigar, "Well, the other guys blew up the building. The plane? Yeah, that was all us. And the Lone Star Convoy, that was us too."
>> No. 40595417
"Hah! No shit?!"

Suave reaches forward, grabs his hoof, and gives him an even firmer shake than he did Umi, laughing all the while. "You glorious sumbitch! That worked out perfect! Hah! ...Hahahah, wow. Well, now we know what we can do. Imagine if we got tagether and pulled off a heist!"

After a short while longer, Suave pulls back and shakes his head, still chuckling. "...'S unbelievable. Glad ta have helped. But, seriously, you need another hoof? Gimme a call."

With that, he starts making his way towards the door. "I'd better skidaddle, Sam. Ah'm gonna wait fer mah new rifle at home. Thanks fer the amazin' night. Y'all have a good time now, y'hear? An' don't get shot!"
>> No. 40595418
With that, Suave takes a double take. "...Huh? Waitaminute, didn't we blow up a buildin', too? ..."

"...Okay, Ah'm drunk off mah flank. Ah need ta get home an' go to bed. Feathers, get yer ass off that stool -- yer mah ride home, an' yer pro'ly gonna be mah pillow t'night, too!"
>> No. 40595431
"Going backwards-" Sam said again, "I'll try not to, you too, you too it's been lovely meeting you. Will do." Sam said, barely containing his own laughter, he already liked and greately respected this guy, for he'd have never pulled off the jobs he had if it hadn't been for Suave and his crews help. Turning to Krieg he smirked, which split into a grin when Suave spoke to her about her being a pillow. "Get 'im home safe Krieg, I'm sure we'll meet again."
>> No. 40595516
File 140854097462.gif - (1.31MB , 300x300 , genome.gif )

As time passes, a pattern starts to emerge. As she continues to explore new and yellowing pages, she consistently refers back to one page: The synaptic replicator, annotating parts and the like. It was also to be noted that a little phone was discretely tucked away near the bottom of the book, like she were an inattentive student trying to hide it with the oldest trick in the book.
That was probably were she were getting the numbers from, to which she attached to the crude blueprint. Costs.

Satisfied, she placed the quill down gently on the pages. She was expecting to smile, or feel at rest, but more than anything it struck her how poor her typography was. It was unseeming, and just a little bit embarrassing. Felt more like silver, now.
Parting hair out of her eyes, she looked up at the zebra who had so prematurely ended her spree, smiling softly.
"Heya. I wanted to talk to you."

Lifting the book off her dead legs -- it always did surprise her how heavy the damn thing was -- she held it up to him.
"Take a look at this and tell me what you think. Just, uh... Don't-- Don't look at the other pages. Any of them."

She was quite insistent on that part. Patiently, she waited the 30 seconds she expected it took for him to read it -- specifically, it was a part that further built on her hypothesis of a digital construct. It was mostly neuroscience, and rather advanced and theoretical at that as it was based off the data she'd pulled from the SR. Where any question about how one would replicate a certain function, she simply wrote in brackets "Farasi."
"Whaddya think? Could you do it...?"
She said, nibbling slightly on her right forehoof.
>> No. 40595830
File 140856479990.png - (633.73KB , 1280x848 , math.png )
As fascinating as the process was, his attention drifted towards the end. Though he was now pretty sure what she was looking at had something to do with brains -- that was where synapses were, right? He was pretty sure -- and it was definitely also related to money, he still couldn't make heads or tails of it. It was about the cloning, probably, and how it managed to replicate the brains. Or something. His attention was diverted somewhat when their glorious leader received a call, and his ears perked in an effort to catch the sub-vocalizations over the MMCS.

This was a fruitless endeavour, and before long he spotted a particular movement out of the corner of his good eye; the quill dropping. Farasi glanced back over to her, soft curiosity on one side contrasting against the harsh, empty question his bad side posed. The sight of her smiling prompted a small half-grin, but his eyebrow arched in enduring interest. He shifted his gaze to the hovering book, narrowing his eyes. Maybe he needed glasses, but he could read a book.

"Uh, okay. Sure," Farasi haltingly agreed, curiosity only mounting at this restriction. It was at this point that he discovered that reading might be harder than he thought. In her scrawling pen, the already lofty concepts felt a bit mangled, and his brow furrowed in concern.

It stayed furrowed long after he finished reading the passage, his lips pursing in a thin, tight line, broken only by the gruesome cleft in his lip. Her question rang in his head, blocking out the rest of the world. It almost seemed like he hadn't heard her, silently working his jaw and spinning his internal gears. Nervousness showed through his consideration as he chewed on his lip and finally looked back at her.

"... It's possible," he said at last. His tone was half-distracted, still working over permutations and the complexity of the data and the variables and the mind-boggling logical functions that would be required. "I mean, well, uh... if you're talking about, uh, what I think this is, then... well, I'm not sure anyone's ever done that before. I, uh-- the clones, they're, um, they must work on similar principles, but that's... Something on this scale is..."

Trailing off, he lapsed back into thought for another second. His good eye lost focus, staring off into space, but the machine looked as alert as ever. Eventually, his jaw set, and with a brusque flick of the head he transitioned into a short nod and a faintly self-aggrandizing smirk.

"It would take time, is what I'm saying. A, uh... well, a lot of time. But-- well, not to toot my own horn, but if there's anyone around that can do something like that, it's me."
>> No. 40595938
File 140856999279.gif - (971.03KB , 500x273 , tumblr_m0i0bzEoTO1qedb29o1_500.gif )

"Yeah, yeah I know. I'm still trying to figure out the logistics of it. I mean, this thing-- If we were able to do it, it'd be huge. As in literally huge. The computation required would be massive."

She didn't seem to mind him tooting his horn, but was too deep in thought to express relief or sarcasm or anything like that. Her brain was set to thinking, and only that. Her hoof rubbed her chin, like a grizzled detective stroking her three-day stubble. She let out a long and ponderous 'Hmm,' which would sometimes waver as flashes of pain entered her expression. Having put herself in the work had proved a good distraction against the pain, but now it was harder to ignore their hollow presence. It was an unsettling sort of thing, the welts not warm and inflamed like they should be, but a persistent sort of of deep-blue chill. It felt like they'd been anesthetized, but forgotten to numb the pain. Worse was that tendrils of biting cold spread from these spaces, giving the impression that it was spreading. It was very, very uncomfortable. She shifted her stance, letting enthusiasm ignore them.
"But I mean, true AI, how awesome isn't that? Way cooler than... Clones. It would require an enormous amount of code, so, so I dunno..." she trailed off, mumbling, stuck in her own head. "Maybe get you some assistants, or perhaps teach myself some more..."

Her brain, having been tuned to just thinking for so long, was slowly giving way to warmth. Closing the book with a heavy thud -- and a series of clicks that sealed it shut -- she shook her head, a self-deprecating smile to it. She was feeling silly being so business-like when Farasi was right there.
"Anyway, sorry, sorry. How you holding up? What with the... Sores, ya know."

A careful repositioning again -- another effect of the welts was that she couldn't seem to sit still for longer than a minute -- as she carefully broached the topic.
"They, uhm, giving you trouble sleeping too?"
>> No. 40596027
File 140857908299.jpg - (235.28KB , 1700x2338 , Oh look, axes_.jpg )
"Put under?" The stallion tilts his head, trying to think of what that means. Certainly not underground. That was a horrible place to do medical things! What could Jet mean... "Okay, I'm going to be honest. I don't know many of the sayings you have here. What does it mean to be 'put under'? Is it something to aid with the surgery?"

Umi shakes Suave's hoof firmly, nodding in agreement. "Until we meet again. Heh, who knows what'll change between then and now."
>> No. 40596028
File 140857915166.png - (128.96KB , 500x282 , haw haw.png )
Despite his casual arrogant comment, Farasi was pretty sure that what she was proposing would require the sort of equipment that only much better qualified people possessed. He was glad she was aware of this, and nodded shortly in agreement -- a supercomputer would be required, something that took up a whole room like in those old pictures. She was definitely thinking very hard about this, so he decided to follow suit. He hadn't ever tried to program a fully functional, sentient mind before. He knew it was possible-- or at least, he was operating under that assumption. The cloning pod somehow transferred the memories of the subject into a progeny; therefore it was possible to capture memories as data. That was a start. Would it be so simple as creating a program that would rely on past experiences to make decisions? No, that wouldn't be true intelligence. It would have to learn.

His brow knit together tighter and tighter the more he lost himself in his meandering thought process, the mangled skin of his bad side folding and tensing unpleasantly. It wasn't the only part of him that hurt; his head was splitting at the mere idea of the work that would entail, to say nothing of his queerly familiar chest. Thankfully, the sound of her voice tore him back to the waking world, and he perked up with wide-eyes at her proposal. True AI would be super cool, it was true, but he wasn't so sure about assistants. It made him sound too... professor-y. He wasn't sure how.

With an air of finality, the heavy book and the vast philosophical and scientific quandary in it were put aside. His shoulders sagged in relief and his characteristic disquieting half-grin made a reappearance, nervous energy abound. When she brought up the sores, however, it faded ever so slightly, just for a moment.

"... A lot of stuff gives me trouble."

He almost sounded sheepish admitting that, his hackles raising as if in dread. Then they transitioned back into a nervous smile as he shrugged, flicking his head dismissively again.

"But, uh, yeah. Yeah, I-- I'm glad it's not just me. Eheheh. They're, uh, a bit freaky, but they'll heal soon enough. I'm sure. But-- but I'm good! Besides that, I mean. Ain't nothing worse than we've had before, eh?"

"How 'bout you? You look a bit, uh... frazzled."
>> No. 40596030
File 140858017687.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg smirks and nods. "Hopefully not up against one another, my friend." She holds out her mechanical hand to him. "Until next time."
She sighs, "Technically yes, but that was the rest of our crew. We ourselves were on the plane, remember?"

She downs the rest of the whiskey and exhales, feeling the burn. "If you puke in my car, you're walking. You may be a pretty face, but that only gets you so far." She smiles and drapes an arm over his shoulders.
She nods to Umi. "You take care of yourself out there."
>> No. 40596036
File 140858233366.jpg - (23.72KB , 399x240 , PqwuoPN.jpg )
He gives her mechanical claw a firm shake, the soft creaking that was heard from its mechanics making it clear that the stallion must have some kind of augment increasing his strength, unknowingly gripping the claw far harder than he had any need to.

"Until next time Krieg, a pleasure meetin' you."

Sam merely chuckled and patted Umi softly on the shoulder, this dumb barbarian would get himself killed in no time running around that ignorant. He didn't know it, but he was so very lucky to find three people as friendly as the friends hed just made. Sam guided him to the door after the Griffon and her ward.

"It means give you a drug to make you lose consciousness for a while. So that you know. You don't feel em working with the big scary scalpels and needles."
>> No. 40596061
File 140858536832.jpg - (480.04KB , 1304x1304 , blue_stallion_commish_by_annasko-d5lyq37.jpg )
Umi nods, offering a friendly smile. "Same to you. Best of luck in your next job."

"Oh...that's a lot less invasive and worry some then I thought." Except for the fact that he was going to be out cold, in the company of strangers. He'd be checking for stitches where there shouldn't be any, after the operation... "So, when are we heading over? And is there anything I need?" His hoof pats his axe, the bulky concealed under the folds of the Lucius Special.
>> No. 40596086
File 140858682970.jpg - (210.48KB , 800x1200 , Garvatoir.jpg )
"Not really to be honest. Doc's pretty informal, I give him the bits and tell him what you want he gets the job done. Easy as that. Shouldn't take more than half an hour and you won't be awake for most of that."

Sam pulled his own Lucius special tighter around himself as they left the bar, setting off with a course in mind, expecting the equally huge stallion to be in tow. There was one good thing about their height to be sure. Few people where dumb enough to try and mug a stallion twice their size, fewer still to try and take on two.
>> No. 40596098
File 140858749197.png - (576.89KB , 1345x1345 , Another pic.png )
Umi silently reflected on the old saying about 'sticking out like sore thumbs'. If anypony was going to do that, it would be a pair of oversized stallions in coats. He looks about, as they go, silently marveling at the city, and it's structure. Even the talaaest buildings back home were dwarfed by the buildings around them.

"Sounds like a pretty easy time. I even get to nap." The stallion laughs softly, though it may be apparent he was hiding a bit of the nerves that were tugging at his thoughts.
>> No. 40596105
File 140858776767.gif - (971.50KB , 500x300 , sam_by_franz888-d651ovc.gif )
Jet patted him gently on the shoulder as they walked. Knowing the feeling of butterflies in your stomach when getting your first Augment, he'd had the same feeling only a few weeks before.

"Don't worry it's not nearly as scary as you think it'll be. Place is only a few minutes walk from here."

In no time at all, they arrived at the doctors place, a clean if not exactly legit business. One where most operators came to get their augments anonymously without fear of being recognised at a hospital or something. After a short conversation with Jet the kindly old mechanic/doctor led Umi to an operating room and had him lie down on a table, he placed a mask over Umi's muzzle and before Umi knew anything had happened, the doctor was washing his hands as Umi's eyes opened again. "All done. Your friend outside's setting up your control mount for you so just go see him. You've been paid for already. Have a nice night kid."
>> No. 40596127
File 140858844685.jpg - (2.12MB , 3500x2500 , commission 1.jpg )
Umi follows the doctor's instructions, laying gdown, and breathing through the mask. He blinks, or at least, he thought he did. When his eyes opened back up, the Doctor was done, and Umi was simply confused. That was it? He mutters something groggily, and possibly not even Equestrian. He sits up, looking over his body, and scanning for any extra scars or stitches. Kidneys? Liver? Other organs? Check. He nods, slightly, before standing up, and testing his footing.

"Thanks, Doc. have a good one too." With that, he slowly walks out of the O.R., gazing about for Jet. This had certainly been a day...and it wasn't over yet, was it?
>> No. 40596134
He found Jet sitting in a chair in the waiting room, fiddling with what appeared to be a jet black watch with a digital screen. Finishing up adding Umi to their chat group so he could call anyone in the group and they could call him, Sam looked up to see him returning and grinned. Offering him the wrist band he said

"See? That wasn't so bad now was it? Come on let's give it a try. My names on the list there, just click it and it'll start a call with me."

Sam nodded to the wrist band, where there was an option for Jet Stream "Sam."
>> No. 40596152
File 140858939079.png - (576.89KB , 1345x1345 , Another pic.png )
The pegasus rubs his head, trying to settle his mane back into place, before gently taking the wristband, and looking at it. "What is it?" He holds the band close to his muzzle, trying to make heads and tails of it, before poking the part that said Sam's name. "I'll never understand this sorcery..." He looks at the list on the band, viewing the other names. If he was going to work with them, it might be best to at least know what to call them, right?
>> No. 40596164
File 140859004494.gif - (220.41KB , 350x165 , 350x165px-0b464c89_tumblr_lvo2835OOi1qe3p9bo1_500.gif )
"Thats your control module for the MMCS, what you use to make calls and such. I've added you to our crews chat group so you can call any of us."

When he clicked Sam's name, the stallion smiled and turned held a hoof over his mouth to muffle himself and then began to whisper. Despite the fact that by no means should Umi be able to hear him, he could hear Sam whispering as if his lips where right beside his ear.

"See? Let's us hear one another no matter what."

Looking down the list of names he saw they went like this.

Jet Stream
>> No. 40596188
File 140859168547.png - (416.53KB , 709x1051 , blue_guy_by_annasko-d6si7zi (1).png )
The stallion flicks his ear, holding up a hoof, as if to ask a question, before lowering it. Better not to ask questions, when you just won't understand the answer. Instead, he raises a hoof, covering his mouth, and speaking softly.

"So. This is how operators stay in contact, during jobs? It's impressive. Subtle, discreet."

The next thing to come through is a soft muttering of each name on the list, as the stallion tries to commit their names to memory. After a few times repeating himself, he speaks once more.

"Am I in their lists now, as well? I mean, it might be a bit of a shock to others, if a name suddenly shows up in their lists. Do many know about me?"
>> No. 40596192
File 140859195764.gif - (552.81KB , 380x203 , 0027.gif )
"Snowflake does, and they're all in a meeting right now so she'll have plenty of time to tell the rest about you. Don't worry about it. So! We've got you all nice and set up. Here's another 500 creds for the Vest." He said, handing over a credit chit.

"Just ask the bartender back at Lucius, he can tell you where to go to get that. But for now at least, I think it's time we part ways Umi. Gangs wanting me back there with em. So how about this? You go home and sleep off the booze, tomorrow Snowflake or I will give you a call so you can meet up with the crew and we'll see what everyone thinks. Even if you don't end up with us, I'll see if I can't get the two of us a job together so you can prove you've got some skills and pay me back. That'll get you a better chance of getting in with another crew if mine dooesn't like you. But I'm sure they will."
>> No. 40596213
File 140859369410.png - (773.70KB , 1181x1198 , manpretty.png )
Umi nods, reaching a hoof to touch his ear and jaw gently. He had augments now...his body had been changed, to make him a better operator. Was this just the start? What was next? He quietly wondered to himself, as he attaches the bracelelt to his foreleg.

"Sounds like a plan, Jet. I look forward to talking with you more tomorrow. Hopefully I'll be able to get that vest. Though i can't promise I'm going to ditch the's still a little armor plus sentimental value." He chuckles softly, before looking towards the door. "Have a good night, Jet. Tell the team I said hi, and I look forward to working with them, if they'll have me."
>> No. 40596472
File 140862721935.png - (85.24KB , 900x757 , blushing eska.png )

'Was that a joke?' was the unwavering thought. 'Should I laugh?' She blinked a couple times as he brushed on, wondering if she should have objected or interjected or shared a knowing nod and sympathy. Blink, blink, blink, and a flat neutrality; it'd suffice. Just a joke.
Soon enough she forgot it, shrugging noncommittally at his reassurance that they'd had worse. Sure, she'd had her chest impaled. Sure, he'd lost half his face, but was it really a matter of comparison?
Maybe it was, that car accident had hurt like a bitch. Or what she could remember of it anyway.

Course then, in the interest of preservation of social standards, she was given her et toi, and for a small moment looked shocked with her wide eyes. A burst of self-conscious inspection followed as she dismissively smirked, tilting her head ever so slightly.
"Yeah, a bit. It's that noticeable?"

She patted out an erratic rhythm on the hardcover book, twitching her hindlegs to its nervous beat. She had her reasons for being "frazzled" after all.
"I mean, partly it's been work, and partly the sores and... A third thing."

She purposefully veiled it in an aura of mystery, giving a wiggle of her eyebrows and an emphatic tone like an actor playing up a particularly large ham. She nodded quickly, tapping some more.
"I think you'll like it, it's kinda awesome. Has a lot of... Applications. Just uh, don't freak out when it happens."

"Wanna guess what it is?"
She said with an impish grin, coaxing the zebra along as she stared at him intently.
>> No. 40596689
File 140863975097.png - (52.81KB , 599x466 , zebra6.png )
Farasi had half a mind to inform her that yes, it totally was that noticeable. She looked so tense he wouldn't be surprised if she exploded. Twice. Especially now that he'd actually brought the matter to light. It was enough to almost make him regret it, but instead he forced his good side to widen his eternal grin. This had the adverse effect of his bad side half-raising its hackles in response, as if physically pained. Then again, it was always in pain. That didn't matter, as long as it wasn't cold again.

This third thing was something else, something that caused his eyebrows to shoot up in surprise and curiosity. The grin obligingly narrowed into a thin, intrigued little line as he cocked his head to the side, his eye wandering up and down her as if it was something that she might have hidden on her person. His ear kept twitching in time with her erratic tapping, but he tried to put it out of mind. She was excited about this. Very excited. It had applications. All of these were good things. But apparently it would make him freak out. The contradicting information set the gears in his head in motion.

He hoped his mouth. Then he closed it. Then he opened it again, raising a decisive hoof that dropped back down a second later. A dull 'hmm' noise escaped from the back of his throat, and at last he shrugged acquiescently. His nervous grin snapped back into place almost apologetically.

"Sorry, I got nothing. I mean, uh, I'm sure it's, like... revolutionary. An incredible piece of... machinery, I'm going to guess? Yeah. But, uh... I'm totally drawing a blank. I, er... well, I'm... hoping it's not something you wouldn't, uh, discuss in... polite company."

He allowed himself a titter at that, but was clearly more interested than amused. His neck dipped like a giraffe, head cocking and drifting closer to her as if on reflex.

"So come on, what is it? The suspense is killing me over here. Is it something super secret? I bet it's a secret."
>> No. 40596749
File 140864169694.gif - (1.45MB , 500x281 , Plotting.gif )

" you too Jet. We will be in touch."

It was a simple message, but it was heartfelt. As heartfelt as she could manage at least. There was the temptation to use the name "Sammy" as she had once had, but the name was, unfortunately, one he did not appreciate. She would have to come up with a new pet name for him. Something to add to the agenda. For now, however, there was one more she needed to account for before she could start the meeting up properly. This time letting a leg hover across the cold, mysterious wound to her sides, putting pressure against that frigid scar that had caused so much of an issue. It distracted her from everything else that was pained, achy and sore. A result of exhaustion, as well as a few procedures undertaken in the name of optimization. She let out an exhausted breath before creating another chat room, followed shortly by a quick rub of her serpentine eyes.

"Hey, Igneus. Holding a conference here soon...think you can make it?"

A quick movement to clean her glasses, wiping the shades on the fabric of her undershirt. Despite all that had happened, she was feeling oddly energetic. Being kicked while she was down, burned, shot and stabbed did little to quell her will. Though it had filled her with the desire to nap. She wondered if scales would replace those unsightly welts that surrounded her wounds. Perhaps they would? There was the question of how much of a literal dragon she would become at the end of all this. Maybe that would be a good thing. Maybe, someday, she would find out what she actually was. She shifted ever so slightly in her seat, reminding herself to take it one step at a time.
>> No. 40596939
File 140865117103.png - (174.19KB , 500x671 , aww yisss.png )

She rolled her eyes at the insinuation that it wasn't something to be mentioned in 'polite company,' but it was mostly to keep face and not make it seem like her shared giggle was quite as mischievous and indulgent as it was. He was, after all, right on both accounts, for reasons obvious and others that were not so. See, Eska had a plan. Half-formed, half-baked but promising nonetheless and that made her excited all over. All in due time, of course -- like when she didn't feel like half of her body was missing. She gingerly rolled her shoulders a couple times. Damn sores.
Ignoring the sensations, she creakily leaned into a good conspiring-distance close to Farasi, speaking in a hushed tone.
"Super, super secret. Or... At least, for now."

Letting that second part sink in, she leaned back to regard him and his starving curiosity, treasuring it for just a moment as she shifted again once to lean forwards more, hiding her chest to expose her spine.
"I'll give you a hint, it goes on my back."
It was an extraordinarily awkward pose for an equine -- sitting down, bending over so your head grazed your hindlegs - but through the magic of marshmallow physique everything was possible. The back itself was nothing extraordinary, just her normal colour of pearl. Evidently, whatever is supposed to go on her back isn't on it right now.

Her expression, though obscured, seemed a distinct shade of amusedly smug, all too knowing.
[Roll Perception with a +1 familiarity bonus.]

Last edited at Thu, Aug 21st, 2014 13:07

>> No. 40597070
File 140866455877.png - (56.36KB , 613x451 , zebra8.png )
It was weirdly exhilarating, being in such close proximity. It was like they were in some old spy movie, or perhaps a movie of a significantly different type. Despite this and her clarification that it was, in fact, super super secret, Farasi still looked as confused as ever. His whole face was drawn long as if it was melting, his lips pursed into a faint frown of intrigue. His eyes were wide, like he was caught on the cusp of realization even though he was still very lost.

Eska went back and forth like a pendulum, but when she came closer again, her stance shifted strangely. Farasi's neck craned backward, his head tilting downward far enough to almost give him a second chin, eyes locked on her back. It was what she was alluding to, after all. His eyes were widening in ever-mounting surprise, as it became extremely hard for him to presume that it was anything other than something that they really shouldn't be talking about anywhere near other people. But surely he was being dirty-minded. Her back, it was something that would be going on her back.

"... A saddle?" He blurted, and immediately raised his hackles in a regretful smile. He looked like he was about to back-peddle violently, but then decided that the only way out was through and amended himself. "Uh-- I mean, er, a... saddle-like thing. Something... similar to a saddle. In that-- that it's, uh, wearable. On your back. And, uh... yeah."

"A special... mechanical saddle? A saddle that has some kind of... special function?" At this point, Farasi was grasping at straws. Surely, if it wasn't dirty -- which, really, he wasn't convinced of -- then it had to be a machine-thing. But he couldn't for the life of him figure out what that function could be. "Uh. Lasers. Is it a laser-saddle?"
>> No. 40597135
File 140866965224.gif - (265.76KB , 240x320 , BlueSmokinSkull.gif )
It was about now that Jet arrived at the conference room, astonishingly arriving nearly on time despite being the only one not promising to be there in the first place. After a momentary conversation with frost making sure that he knew where to go, he arrived soon enough at the conference room, or rather WB's room. Or rather, the last place he and Frost had lain together. The stallion couldn't help but grin to himself cheekily as he entered, giving frost a teasing wink as his eyes went to the couch they'd used.

"Hey Snowy, not too late am I?"
>> No. 40597547
File 140872376496.png - (369.58KB , 520x350 , Grin.png )
The big red drake groans as the notification's beeping wakes him up, slowly rolling out of his warm cot before stretching out lazily and checking the communicator. Back to work already, huh?

"Might be a little late, ma'am, but I should be there. Might bring along a +1 too, someone I know who might be able to help us out with an idea or two I had. As long as that's okay with you, of course."
>> No. 40597591
File 140872696796.png - (368.46KB , 530x715 , 1406193883825.png )

When he announced in no certain terms that she was going to wear a saddle, she leaned back to a natural sitting position for multiple reasons. Firstly, because she realized it was hopeless, secondly, because genuine laughter propelled her back, rippling through her chest. She leaned her head back and let out a snort, followed by a short guffaw until she turned her head to look back at the suddenly mortified Farasi. That was good, if he'd been serious, she'd have to punch him or something. Now he was just being very silly.
Throughout his guesswork, she politely kept her mouth clamped in a wide and condescending smile and it was only with that last and most improbable one that she laughed again, half-exasperated, half-bewildered.
"Laser sa-- What? How would that even work?"

A brisk shake of her head as she regarded him for a good few seconds to truly let it sink in what a silly pony he was, because that he was; she could scarcely believe that he had the audacity to claim the ability to program true AI. Laser saddles. Pushü would be proud.
Speaking in good-natured chastisement, she tweaked his snout.
"No, you dork, it's not a saddle and if you think I'm gunna be the one to wear one, then you got this relationship all backwards. As I recall, I'm usually the one doing... The..."
The sentence didn't reach completion as something just outside of their little bubble showed itself, her voice trailing off with the sight and causing her smile to falter, but not disappear. Her cheerful inflection seemed to drop a few centigrade of heat.
"Looks like I'll have to show you later; we're gonna start soon."

Frost'd said that one of the requirements of her new position of power was to respect Sam. This always struck Eska as a little silly, after all, was respect and trust not things supposed to be earned? Instead, a negotiation and all those problems were gone. Eska couldn't deny its effectiveness, she'd been the one to propose it after all, but it all seemed a little strange. A small price to pay, perhaps, to avoid one of the looming potential deaths on the horizon, which was always something. That didn't change the way that her fur seemed to stand on edge, though, nor the quietly seething knowledge of his true character.
She slumped back with a heavy sigh, patting the ground next to her, her gaze at the very edge of her eyes to still see the towering zebra. Her smile, while still wry, seemed just a bit more resigned as she repeated.
"It's not a saddle though, sorry if I... Disappointed you and your fantasies."

Last edited at Fri, Aug 22nd, 2014 10:04

>> No. 40597680
File 140873068830.png - (554.90KB , 1024x600 , 1405311892598.png )
Laughter was probably better than being slapped upside the head, so Farasi endured it quietly, even though his whole face was one frozen mass of redness. He looked like he had just bit into something unreasonably sour, his lips pursed inward and eyes wide in shock and terror. It was only after he was forced to shrug awkwardly, not knowing with any certainty how a laser saddle would work, that he broke into his usual nervous, bolted-on half-grin with the quickened exhale that passed for laughter with him. It was a hounded grin, and his bad side's attempts to replicate it were uncertain at best.

His snout crinkled inward at the tweaking. Despite himself, he felt his grin growing wider and more amused than embarrassed, though he was definitely blushing like a tomato. His good eye narrowed in mild amusement, and he might have been about to shoot back with some rather bawdy comment about the status quo when she trailed of. He twisted his neck curiously, and while he wasn't an owl, he caught a glimpse of Jet entering. This, to him, wasn't any cause to stop smiling, and he grinned and nodded at the samurai.

Twisting back around, he shifted his stance to put his back against the wall and obligingly slid himself down next to Eska. Farasi retained the wide grin for a moment before emulating her and easing off the throttle. There was more open amusement in his demeanour, and with a quick glance about the room, he leaned into her and spoke at a hurried whisper.

"They say variety's the spice of life. Maybe another time~?" He teased, uncharacteristically forward. There was a spark in his good eye, one he set about hiding as he cleared his throat and suddenly found an excuse to glance elsewhere. He seemed quite determined to have the last word on that matter, possibly because, if his vivid blush was any indication, another word and he might just explode.

"Anyway, uh, right. Meeting. We'll, er, talk about that later. The not-saddle, I mean, 'cause, uh-- 'Course, uh, we need Big Red, don't we? 'Course we do. But I'm sure he's on his way. Yeah. Any second now."
>> No. 40597732
File 140873248665.png - (69.18KB , 480x571 , valhalla.png )

It was a wonder he managed to be so effective at blushing when half his face was missing, but she could practically feel the heat radiate from him in a most indecent manner. Despite this, he seemed happy as could be, a nice change she thought. But it hadn't quite struck her how different he was acting when he crept up close to her and whispered oh-so-secret words to her, and Eska couldn't help but be stunned. She blinked a couple times, and looked at him as if he'd taken leave of his senses. This persisted despite his coughing and glancing and uhming about, a continuous piercing stare.
First he wants to be slapped around, and now he wants to see her in a tasteless and frilly - for they all were in Eska's imagination - saddle? He was a strange one, and there was a certain glint about him that suggested that it wasn't quite so silly that she thought it was. Truthfully, she didn't know what to make of it. The thought didn't much appeal to her, but if he liked it...

Well, maybe another time.
Especially when he was being so forward which she still couldn't quite wrap her head around. Was she having a bad influence on him? Or was he just revealing more and more of himself? The stereotype of the chaste and shy girl with crazy urges hiding underneath came to mind. Maybe it had more merit than she thought.

"Yup, any second now."
For politeness sake there was a vague smile on her face, but there was a hollowness in her stare. A saddle, a saddle, a saddle, how the hell was she supposed to pull off a saddle? Her teeth began gently sawing on her lower lip, and Eska became aware that, for the first time, she was the one being anxious and having red creep into her expression. It was an unnerving sorta realization, for a mare in power.
>> No. 40597792
File 140873562614.gif - (863.26KB , 277x300 , Littlefinger.gif )

You sure he can be trusted? How do you know this plus one? If you are absolutely sure, then I don’t have a problem with it...still, have him wait outside if you bring him along now. We can sort him, and this idea of yours, out once we are done discussing more...sensitive matters.

Now this was intriguing. First Jet brought along the promise of more muscle, and now Igneus was bringing along somebody as well. A friend, or so she presumed. An acquaintance at the very least. This was good, but they needed to be cautious. This was exactly the kind of thing that they needed, but that was no excuse to let the guard down as well. She would have to meet with the mysterious warrior her coltfriend brought in. As well as the friend of their resident dragon. Frost rested her chin in her hooves, having grown tired of feeling up her sores and wounds, looking deep in thought, though it was not long before a very familiar, very unexpected face made his way onto the scene. She could not help but look surprised, just as she was helpless to do anything but smile at this unexpected arrival.

“Jet...I thought you were not going to make it.” She said, leaning her head in for a peck as he settled himself down next to her. “Good of you to make it though.” Ever smiling, she could not help but notice his very peculiar behavior. It was not alarming by any means, but it was odd all the same. That grin of his told of much more than merely a pleasant greeting, and that wink of his….oh. Frost blinked. She blinked again, and then returned the grin, with a very subtle chuckle of her own. Of course. How could she forget? This was the very couch she had been laid upon, after her miraculous recovery. The very couch that they left that evening. Only to return to shortly thereafter…

Aside from dying a painful death that evening and losing a bit of her equinity, that had been a very good night indeed. But of course, that was beside the greater point. They had work to do, and as much as she would just love to bask in the glow of pleasant memories, it seems the only one missing was one who was going to be late. The time had come to kick this off into gear. With a pat of Jet’s back, she cleared her throat and spoke out to everyone. Breaking the trend of hushed whispers and sultry conspiracies. For the moment at least.

“Alright...Igneus is running a bit late so we are going to start now. He can hop right in once he arrives. A lot has happened, to say the least. We got new bounties, a way to get rid of those bounties, got some interesting tech with a variety of...applications, some capital, and a few new toys to play with…” She said this with a slight twist of her mechanical leg before clasping it together with her natural one. Grin growing just a little wider as she spoke.

“So now question is...where do we go from here? I think a good place to start would be the matter of the...devices we came into contact with. Got a good look at them myself...fascinating stuff. But that's also not my department.” She turned her head to face the pair of nerds, letting her head sink just a little bit lower, so that all but her mutated eyes were blocked away by her clasped forelegs. “I got an idea I wanted to share with you all. Regarding a practical application of the tech we just took. A way we can make it work for us...but first, lets get an update from you two. What I want to know is, do we have enough of the tech figured out to start making working models yet?”
>> No. 40597897
"You're the boss, ma'am. I'll see if he's up for it today.

It was pretty obvious what the alabaster mare had to talk about - their discovery in the upper city - but the way she'd put it, it sounded like she had more to talk about. Maybe those job postings, some of which had given him his own ideas. He definitely had to think of the best way to present that to the others.
>> No. 40598054
File 140874939257.jpg - (68.31KB , 460x600 , [gu.jpg )
Sam's grin only widened as the realisation hit her and the stallion conceded to planting a soft kiss on her lips before settling into the chair beside her, one hoof going over the back to lie lightly on her shoulders. Sam rarely had much to say in these meetings and today was no exception, at least for the moment. For now he simply watched everyone, Frost in particular as she laid out her ideas. He was curious as to what she had in mind certainly, they had a way to clone one of their team now, what did she plan to do with a second machine?
>> No. 40598164
File 140875520366.jpg - (90.36KB , 580x825 , Big Red One - German.jpg )
The drake in question saunters in shortly after, pausing outside the room to turn to the guest he'd brought along. "Just wait here a minute... bossmare said she wanted to talk to us before talkin' to anyone else."

With that, he pads into the room and nods to the others. "Hey everyone. Sorry I'm late. I didn't hold you up any, did I?"
>> No. 40598233
File 140875941056.png - (226.96KB , 455x348 , 1405308552866.png )
Fortunately for Farasi, there was no shortage of things to look at that weren't Eska's no doubt judging glare. He could almost feel it boring into his temple, but he couldn't deny the flash of amusement that came with that whole matter. Variety was the spice of life, it was true, and it felt surprisingly good to make the occasional dirty joke or suggestion. Eska was probably the only individual in living memory he was comfortable enough with. Granted, he wasn't so sure about following up on this one. She probably would look good in a saddle. Very, very good. But she probably wouldn't want to wear one. Should he say something to her? Maybe he should take it back. But she probably wouldn't think too much of it. Doubtlessly, she wasn't dwelling on it. Of course not. If he brought it up again, the embarrassment would cumulate to such a state that the nervous sneer that was winding its way up his good side would split his face clean in two. Again.

Even if he was inclined to bring that particular perversion up again, it would be rude to interrupt Frost now that she seemed to beginning the little meeting. He thought he should tear the smile off his face, but Frost was smiling, so he figured he should just keep on doing it. His ears were perked up attentively, listening in as Frost helpfully exposited the last few days just in case any of them developed amnesia. She looked really happy. And then she was casting that delighted gaze at them, and he froze up like a mouse caught in a spotlight.

Damn straight the devices weren't her division. He found himself wishing that it wasn't his, though. Her question bounced around in his head, and for several seconds he was completely silent, his grin taking on a slightly absent quality as his eyes drifted up from the mare's eyes to a spot between her ears. They had had plenty of time to look the devices over, pick them apart and turn them upside down and figure out how they ticked. But could they reproduce them? They were incredibly sophisticated, light-years beyond anything else he'd seen. And yet, with all that time, tearing them apart...

"Well, uh, um... I, er... I would think so?" Farasi said uncertainly, sounding more like he was questioning some unseen entity than answering. He began fiddling with his collar. "It, uh, it's-- it's very advanced stuff, very incredible, very interesting. And-- and, uh, we... don't immediately have the, er, necessary resources to build more. But, uh, conceptually-- theoretically, it's... possible. At-- at the very least, I... understand the, uh... programming, the data storage and how they map the... components."

"... Eska, uh, what d'you think? Sorry, this is, uh, more your area," he seemed to realize after running his mouth. His neck shifted, bobbed and twisted as he cast his toothy grin back at her, clearly discomposed.

And then it was Igneus' turn to get his distressed and distressing grin cast in his direction. He momentarily looked more surprised than anything to see the dragon here, having apparently given up hope on him coming home before the cows, but grinned and nodded all the same. Then he seemed to realize his error, and hurriedly shook his head instead.
>> No. 40598278
File 140876593277.jpg - (153.98KB , 786x1017 , sunglasses_by_dreamscreator-d39377q.jpg )

“Hey Igneus. Just in time actually. Did not miss a thing...have a seat why don’t you?”

She nodded respectfully in his direction, though her eyes remained planted firm upon the two faced zebra. Behind all the jittering nonsense, she was hearing exactly what she had wanted to hear. At least on the programming end of things, the code can be replicated. What of the mechanics though?

“I don’t need anything technical, and we can get to capital in a moment. I just need to know that, once we do get the resources necessary, that we are able to replicate it. Which, according to you, is the case. As far as your end of the development is concerned.”

It was as much a challenge as it was an acknowledgement. Was he entirely sure that what he was saying was true? It could be, on occasion, hard to discern, given the fact that nervous seemed to be the default state for him. She took care not to make it a barking command however. The stick was fun and had its place, but the carrot got you a bit farther in the end. Debateably. Whatever the case was, she awaited Eska’s response with bated breath. The wheels of her mind turning behind her smiling face. Frost was hardly gleeful, but something was forming in the corners of her brain. Something that appealed to her on a very profound level. One step at a time though, she reminded herself. One step at a time...
>> No. 40598283
File 140876813801.gif - (81.90KB , 60x56 , Firebat_SC1_HeadAnim1.gif )
"Yes'm." He throws one of his lazy salutes and leans against a wall as he watches the others, sparing a quick glance at the door before returning his attention to the discussion. Definitely discussing their big, freaky scientific find, then.

He looks to Eska for her response. She and Farasi had said something to that effect before... did they really have the resources to take advantage of something like that, though? If his idea panned out, they very well could be on their way to making it a reality... provided Eska confirmed the initial estimate, of course.
>> No. 40598436
File 140881366692.png - (18.30KB , 500x300 , anxious shark.png )
Oh dicks, they really were starting.
With Igneus on the scene, everyone was present and Frost began her corporate speech and soon enough, Eska could feel how the room collectively shifted their attention to her and Farasi's little bubble, creating a stage and a spotlight for both of them were before they had been so pleasantly isolated. She felt herself fidget intermittently as Farasi talked, glancing this way and that but mostly on him. He handled his performance with just about the grace expected, communicating little since, like he said, it was 'her area.' This was when another shift in the room took place, a narrowing. Where it'd been both of them, now it was squarely on her. She felt her pulse quicken and her esophagus didn't seem to sit right in her throat. It was Tubby Wubby Pony Waifu all over again.
At least she vaguely knew what she was doing here.

Again, an uncomfortable shift as she continued where Farasi had left, and where Frost tried to steer it. It sounded, much like her partner, largely uncertain.
"Yeees, it's technically possible to recreate anything, given enough time and resources..."
There was an obvious problem with that platitude, one she was pretty sure Frost would catch onto. Yes, it was technically possible to recreate anything, but at what cost? Instinctively, she felt a need to back up her claims - and perhaps even show off a bit.
"But, uh, look. Accounting for material costs, workshop costs - because we're gonna need to contract one unless you want to wait twelve months for us to build it by hoof - and labour costs, the total price for a single replicator is... Uh... Approximately three-hundred thousand credits. Rounded down."
A sheepish smile was offered to the too happy Frostflow, an awkward admission made.
"It's fifty years ahead of modern technology, basically everything has to be made custom, and with the top-of-the-line equipment needed to produce... It's... It's not cheap." Realizing that she was running her mouth and making a case againt it, she hastily added: "But if we sell them at a profit of two-hundred thousand, we ought to reach one million with four pods sold."

"That's, uh, what my rough estimates say anyway."
Her hoof did a little tap dance on the hard cover, testing out the sturdiness of its wisdom, and her gaze seemed to cast itself only vaguely directly at Frost.
>> No. 40598452
The big drake just whistles softly and shakes his head. Obviously they could turn a solid profit - this was the sort of thing worth entire fortunes on its own.

"Problem as I see it isn't the money. We can run some jobs to make a few hundred grand pretty easy, then reinvest the profits into more machines. The problem is holding on to the assets with a million-total bounty on our heads. I think we want to run a front, a shell company with only one or two liasons between us and them."
He nods to Eska, then turns his attention back to Frost. "And I probably don't need to tell you, but we can hardly run it from here. You're gonna need to factor in the cost of some decent real estate, and salaried employees. Including ssome solid, vetted security of both the mechanical and biological varieties." The big drake grins, showing a quick flash of teeth. "The good news is, I brought along a guest who I think can help manage our aboveboard interests. And who I'd trust to act as handler for any third parties we brought in to help with our more regular activities."
>> No. 40598509
File 140882098764.png - (41.15KB , 266x265 , 1391971416_deersoup_bus.png )
The sharp eyes of the white dragon bore down upon the young little mechanic. As the one beside her, her precious hacker, she seemed so very nervous as well. Nervous, but as she spoke it was becoming clear that it had less to do with the research and more to do with stage fright. The very sort of fear that she had seen when taking to the stage in song. It was silly, the more and more she thought about it. After all, it was not as if she was being asked to sing karaoke to the team.

Over all, it mattered little in the long run. After all, it seemed she knew what she was talking about at the very least. The numbers ran through alright, or so she presumed. Frost reminded herself to take a look at those estimates later. For the immediate moment however, she nodded along in approval of what was being said. As high as these numbers where, it felt good to put all these ideas down to something more manageable. Something a little more tangible. Letting the legs fall, revealing a little more of her grin, she opened her mouth to speak, though in the end it was Igneus who beat her to the punch.

She turned her attention to him, keeping her expression static through it all. He had brought up a very good point, after all. Money, scarce as it was, could be made through various jobs and heists, but the bounty remained a very strong factor in all of this. Of course. They could not run it from here. And not in their current state. Even if the bounties were not a factor. She made her state of agreement known, as well as a little bit of caution at the mention of the other. One she knew was to be coming, though she was not accounting for him being a factor so soon. Much less a factor in this particular operation.

“Well, its funny you should mention that, as well as the shell companies. You are absolutely right. Both of you. Money is not the only factor here. We have labor, venue, and image to concern ourselves with. This brings me back to what I was about to suggest...piggybacking off an idea I had actually discussed with Farasi, prior to the op that got us this technology.” A nod in the direction of the zebra, though she kept her eyes planted square upon the drake. “Under assumed names and identities...I had originally planned for a slow, methodical rise in the corporate ranks...kind of like a parasite. With this tech though? That has become unnecessary. Not counting the costs here, we have the tools necessary to bring something very...unique to the marketplace. This is the kind of stuff that put these megacorps on the map in the first, we went and stole a little of that fire...I would like to discuss with you all the possibility of starting up our own business. Seems I was not the only one with that idea...given what I am hearing from you two. We need a way to sell them, manufacture, and protect them... while at the same time, keeping some of the heat off of us.”

“We can discuss the specifics...after you tell us a little more about this friend of yours.” She shifted in her seat, head at a slight tilt. “You mentioned this friend of yours can help...tell us how. Tell us also how you know him, how long you have known him...and if he can be trusted to be of help. Don’t just say you do...give us a reason to trust.”
>> No. 40598763
File 140883485369.png - (247.92KB , 303x549 , tensed winter.png )

Suspicion was leveled in several directions, three, in fact. Two obvious but mostly surface-level, and one more subtle. For starters, bringing someone else in - an outsider - into their little insular group seemed more than dangerous. They were so insular for a very good reason, Eska thought, and it was only after a few seconds that she realized that this knee-jerk reaction was no longer entirely validated. Why worry about bounties when they could promise more? Now with the replicators, they were playing an entirely different game. It was a strangely startling sort of realization, of no longer having to live in complete fear and isolation. Her eyebrows flashed approvingly, and her head swiveled to face Frost.

To be fair, here her suspicions weren't very valid either. It was more a reflex, in her nature to put on a frown whenever the queen of ice spoke. She was pretty sure it wasn't justified, anyway, because her attention had got caught on something, causing her brow for just the smallest of a second to furrow deeper. While she never turned her gaze, nor twisted her head, in her mind the striped one was in vivid focus. She'd heard no word of this plan. Perhaps it wasn't relevant? Her paranoia was flaring up again. It sounded pretty fuckin' signifigant to her.
She may have been staring intently at the dragon and the semi-dragon, but Farasi was the one she was truly looking at. Her body language changed accordingly, just that little bit extra stiff.

It was probably nothing, but Eska was a teenager; if something could be blown out of proportion, she'd probably do it. For now though, silent thought.
>> No. 40598786
File 140883629685.jpg - (105.60KB , 800x844 , Firebat_SC2_DevStory1.jpg )
Igneus nods, mostly keeping his attention on Frost buy addressing the whole group.
"He's a coworker, and I absolutely trust him with my life. He does side work as a salesdrake, and has plenty of face skills. Good with others. He's had to work hard to keep himself level with others, and it translates into a strong approach... he's just not one to grab the reigns for himself, even if he can handle 'em just fine." He chuckles. "Which should work out just fine for you, having someone to manage things without having to worry about him trying to take over."
>> No. 40599016
File 140885045598.gif - (1.84MB , 480x270 , 1408828875045.gif )
Now that the spotlight was off of him, Farasi could feel himself relaxing. He was still a far cry from being truly relaxed, but he wasn't fidgeting as much, and his grin was less ghastly. He still nodded intermittently, just to make it clear that he was totally paying attention. Eska's estimate of the cost was realistic; he wasn't sure why, but it just felt right somehow. Instinct. Then again, that was definitely her area of expertise, so maybe he was just being trustful.

His ear twitched at Igneus' proposal. This business of, well, business sounded nice. A company. That much he could agree with, but he had to bring up his associate again, and a frown crossed the zebra's faces. He didn't want new additions. Necessary as they might have been, his ears dipped at the prospect of another variable. That was the last thing they needed, more moving parts in this mad machine. But, with a deep, calming breath, he reminded himself to see it from the dragon's perspective. Big Red trusted this friend. And there did have to be some distance between them and the company, much as he preferred a personal touch.

Farasi stiffened as Frost seemed to address him, suddenly anxious again, but it was barely an acknowledgement. Just that business back in the alley. His eyes were wide, the prospect she was driving at already having been spoiled a bit by Big Red. Ears raised and standing at attention, his gaze slowly slid over to the dragon in curiosity. It was a good idea. A very good idea. Starting their own corporation. The dragon's assurances sounded very good. Almost too good. He didn't like that. This friend of his sounded like exactly what he would have wanted instead of Frarir, all the way back in Manehattan. So maybe he was just a little bit jealous that he had a friend who was competent but unambitious, but it still sounded too good.
>> No. 40599287
File 140889334154.gif - (42.14KB , 192x224 , suspect.gif )

"Well, bring him on in then, if you really think he's as good as you think."
She said after a while with something that bordered on being annoyed, having nodded as he elaborated and warmed to the concept. They were gonna sell a product, they were gonna need someone who knew business, after all, and this salesdrake sound like the kind to fit the bill. Still, it was strange, her impatient intonation. She was increasingly wanting to get this over with, so she could talk more in private with the one who was burned into her mind's eye.
A tense shift on the ground. Damn sores.
"Let's just, uh, try and keep a lid on the bounties, ya know. Don't wanna... Well, I'm not afraid he's gonna sell us out for it, because we can just promise a higher paycheck, but... Uh... Might scare him off."

"Where... Is he?"
>> No. 40599306
File 140889444565.gif - (81.90KB , 60x56 , Firebat_SC1_HeadAnim1.gif )
"Just outside. Miss Frost asked me to leave him there if I brought him along." He glances between the others for their assent, then nods and turns back, stepping into the room outside to retrieve the other drake.

Momentarily he returns, leading a smaller, less bulky drake in an Atlas PPV. While the equines might not be able to pick out the subtle differences between the two as easily as another drake, the new arrival does stand out for at least one reason - his scales are bright pink. "Everyone, this is Agatium. Agat, this is the team. Farasi, Frost, Eska, Carnage, and Jetstream."
>> No. 40599349
File 140889846633.jpg - (71.46KB , 1280x720 , Satsuki29.jpg )

She listened in as he sold her the idea of this friend of his, one that could help act as general manager to this grand enterprise they are just now setting up. It all sounded well and good, an old friend from work who was good with people, who is capable and yet at the same time not so ambitious as to be hiding a knife behind the back. Not that Frost would not have been prepared for such an eventuality. But still it was nice to know. Nice to know, but they had still yet to meet this potential employee. She was just about to make that suggestion before Eska took the words right out of her mouth.. With a simple nod in her direction, she spoke out again. The glasses that had been hanging on the edge of her coat pocket became engulfed in a light blue light, floating their way right on over to her eyes. Did not want to freak out the new blood after all.

"Alright. Bring him in. Lets hear what he has to say..."

And so Igneus went and did that, bringing back what looked to be a most...colorful dragon. She raised a curious brow behind her shades and leaned herself just a little bit of the ways forward. Pink scales...not the worst look in the world for a dragon, though she would be hard pressed to trade her own with him, if somehow given the choice. The color was one thing, but what of the drake himself?

"Agatium. Pleasure to meet you. Igneus speaks highly of you...he also says you can be of assistance to us. He gave us a bit of a crash course, but why don't you go ahead and tell us a little of yourself?"

Right down to business. Smiling all the same. It was a common enough question in any sort of job interview. First things first. It was time to get a read on what kind of drake the big red had dragged in. Her designer shades hid an intent and focused stare, further hidden behind a good natured smile that would, hopefully, set him at ease. She had been practicing after all.
>> No. 40599910
File 140892651312.png - (1.18MB , 719x1111 , DiscordBA.png )
"Pleasure to meet you, Frost."

Agatium is, aside from his strange pigment, the very portrait of a downtown dragon: stringy, lanky, overstretched, prefers his hind legs due to his anemic forepaws; he lacks muscle tone in any appendage, his tail hangs wiltingly down to his heels, and his head-spines are tinged with grey. These are all signs of the malnutrition characteristic of underprivileged dragons--the results of an all-rock diet, with nary a gemstone to be found.

As a matter of respect, he bends down onto his fours, in order to meet your eyes; but even this simple act causes his legs to tremble, and he nearly falls forward onto his face. After pausing only for the smallest of moments, to catch his breath and affect a smile, he begins speaking:

"I'm a magazine salesman, specializing in...alternative lifestyles. I usually work in downtown, where that sort of thing can get someone into a lot of trouble they're not careful about it."

He lets that hang for a moment and digs his tail into the carpet like an anchor--he truly is a pathetic specimen.

"Igneus has told me that you need someone who can manage people and money while you're...out. I think I can do that. AS...long as you never get me in a fight."

He smiles at you apologetically, the sheepishness plain on his face--he's inexperienced, no doubt about it.



"We need two things. Information, and money."

Madame Vector traces a circle around the barroom floor, her mismatched limbs alternatively clopping and padding over the woodwork. Though she is discussing a matter of the utmost importance, she moves at a molasses pace; evidently, there is no better better time to take it easy than while plotting a deicide. Her hoof-and-paw-steps are intercut by the drone from the anachronistic pocket-radio she's set up on the counter--it's mostly just a drone feed regarding your latest high-profile bank robbery.

"...And you already have money."

As the report comes to an end, she switches the thing off and hops up on the countertop--taking this moment to doff her cap, and expose her long mismatched antlers.

"We need to find out more--see just where this is taking us. We already know Celestia isn't to be trusted, but there's one other princess we have yet to test."
>> No. 40599921
File 140892678760.png - (113.19KB , 560x489 , Sparkplug.png )
Sparkplug jumped up in excitement.

"The Princess of the Night, yes!"

The midget mutt sat on the table, opening up his bottle of beer.

"...Her, right?"
>> No. 40599931
File 140892708218.png - (173.45KB , 1000x1000 , This many!.png )
"There's four of 'em, right?"

Lunacy was relaxing on a couch, examining his new leg - which, what should be mentioned, was not currently attached to his body.

"The Princess of the Day, The Princess of the Night - she's my favorite, the Princess of Love, and the Princess of Magic."

"Forgive me if I get any of those wrong, it's been a while since I've even seen a history textbook."
>> No. 40599943
File 140892742035.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )

Sparkplug scowled in disgust.

"History is fascinating and magical, poni."
>> No. 40599952
Suave rests back on the couch, looking at his new earnings as he listens to the conversation around him. After thinking about it for a moment, he tips his hat up and looks across the room, cocking an eyebrow.

"Well then. Ah haven't heard jack-diddly-squat 'bout any other princesses any time recently. Sure, maybe in a book 'r two, but other'n that? Nothin'. Then again, Ah'm not one ta read a newspaper too often."

And, as an afterthought, he turns his head, looking for his feathered friend.

"Oy, Kreig! Got a drink?"

"...Wait, Ah thought tha four princesses stood fer tha four diff'rnt kinds o' love?"
>> No. 40599959
File 140892789547.png - (847.83KB , 900x804 , y 4 gusta.png )
"Correct, Mister Sparkplug. But we must understand, going forth, that things aren't how they look. We're dealing with something that has the capacity to imprison and impersonate a...very gifted pony. Possibly more than one. Let's assume nothing."

She sits there and idly picks at her claws, as she waits for Lunacy to finish speaking; and once he does, she nods and offers a counterpoint, without taking her eyes off her paw.

She smiles ever so softly when she hears you say that, in the fashion of someone who knows something they really shouldn't. That's mostly because she is--for the most part, the princesses of love and magic are relegated to the realms of apocrypha, and simply acknowledging their existence is a thing most believers are loathe to do.

"Were. Were four, mister Lunacy. I haven't been to the crystal empire in over a thousand years, and I don't know what's become of them. Not much news gets out of there--they could be a dictatorship a this point, for all you hear. I don't think their princess came back into the limelight when Celestia did."

While it's true that the Empire is rarely in the news--and indeed, isn't much of an empire these days--it seems a little unreasonable to assume it's a dictatorship. You're fairly certain it's just a oligarchy--which is like a dictatorship, only with like a bunch of people so it's okay for some reason.

After a moment, she spits on her paw-pad, and begins gingerly polishing one of her antlers, with all the coordination and care you'd expect from her--that is to say none at all, in case you lack pattern recognition skills.

"And I don't know what's become of Twilight. I've searched everywhere I can and I haven't even found a mention of her name. Luna is, at this moment, the only place we have to look."
>> No. 40599970
File 140892818673.gif - (93.94KB , 501x412 , THATS ALL FOLKS .gif )
The stallion beside frost smiled as the Dragon entered, looking him over inquisitively. Though after a moment or two he frowned, looking at the poor pathetic creature in sympathy. Nodding his head softly in greeting and giving a soft wave when he entered the stallion stayed quiet as the man introduced himself and what he had to offer, listening intently before nodding. Looking to Frost but saying to himself.

"I'm sure we'll have a spot for you in the Esplanade and in our little gang."

He said, eyes on Frost for confirmation for a moment before looking back to their pathetic new friend, giving him his signature, toothy shiny smile.

"Not too worry on that last regard either, I or any of us won't let you get hurt while working for us."
>> No. 40599977
File 140892833264.png - (520.42KB , 2357x2880 , All my want.png )
"And what if we can't get what we need from Luna?" Dom asked, sitting with the others and slurping away at some mug of beer, good beer. Dom had bits, Dom wasn't going to eat nasty food or shitty beer again thanks to his new life style.
>> No. 40599983
File 140892855687.png - (439.02KB , 682x719 , suave charmer Sparkplug.png )
Sparkplug took several gulps of beer and belched loudly.

"Sparkplug thinks that if Princesses of Love and Magic are silent and Princess of Night is fake as well, we gunna need a lot bigger guns."
>> No. 40600003
File 140892912792.jpg - (397.17KB , 2500x2100 , Armor.jpg )
Krieg takes a draw from her mug of beer. "So, do we just do the same thing we did with Celestia? Just line up and ask her?"
She smirks. "Bigger guns? Now you're talking my language!"
She passes her flask over to him. "Don't I always?"
>> No. 40600041
"Mister Sparkplug said it best, studmuffin. If we can't find one honest one in the bunch, our work's going to be really cut out for us."

"I don't believe so, Miss Krieg. The poetry stunt already ran its course; you've been made by Celestian security, the princess herself, and presumably whoever put that thing in my friend's skin. We can't just call them out into the open and grill them this time. We need a way of gathering information on her without anyone else knowing it was us--and we need to do it without letting her know we're onto her sister."

"Good. I don't much like being hurt."

Agatium accompanies that with a self-deprecating chuckle, and thereafter extends his knobbly-and-gnarled forepaw.

"Nice to meet you."
>> No. 40600088
Suave looks over at Dom, offering a light shrug. "Do what we do best an' wing it? But, even then, there's gotta be a lot ta find out 'bout the princess, and a couple thousand places ta look. We'll find somethin'."

He takes the flask, smiling as he screws off the cap. "Yes, ya always do. 'Swhy Ah keep you 'round. ...Well, one o' tha reasons. Heheh..."

He takes a swig of whatever is in the flask without questioning it.
>> No. 40600098
File 140893137551.png - (694.63KB , 800x800 , E'yup-Nightshade.png )
Dom blinks a few times as he looks down at the mug in his hoof "...Studmuffin?" He shakes his head before looking back at Madame and the other ponies of his group "Welp, this seems like it's gonna need a smart plan, don't wanna be the guy who plans that out.."

Dom looks over to Sauve and shakes his head "I don't think winging it is going to be the smartest thing to do ...Ehhhh, We'll figure something out. Sure we got some time."
>> No. 40600105
File 140893146589.png - (217.65KB , 531x300 , seduction attempt.png )
Sparkplug stood up on the table.

"So! How does one get private info on Princess of the Night?"
>> No. 40600111
File 140893161335.png - (215.89KB , 475x240 , Grin2.png )
The big red drake nods. "I told him that shouldn't be an issue, although we might need him in the field every now and then, it shouldn't be for anything we expect to use guns for." He shrugs. "Supervising transporters, taking a relatively anonymous look around, that sort of thing."
>> No. 40600280
File 140893706011.jpg - (71.84KB , 800x525 , rainbow_dragon_eye_by_lucky978-d5t6iip.jpg )

It had become clear that a shade of pink was not the only issue with this drake. Behind her glasses and her smiling face, she took note of these many little details, all helping to paint a rather pathetic picture of the dragon they hoped to hire. Malnourished, unused to any hard or physical labor, a magazine sales drake, this was not the kind of creature suited for the more rigorous demands of criminal labor. Of course, there had to be a catch, but at the same time he, her coltfriend, and the dragon who had brought him, they all had brought up a very excellent point. This was not someone they were going to bring on missions, no extra gun to be found here. This was a dragon whose main purpose was to be what Penny was to her so long ago. That kind of asset had its use.

That being said, if there was anything this life had taught her, it was that you needed to expect the unexpected. Sometimes things did not go as planned. In fact? Almost all the time, things never go as planned. She wondered if he would be up to that, contemplating this as she once more clasped her legs together, letting her smile fade in a calculated show of thought. She glanced up at Sam before turning her attention to Igneus and his pink friend, lightly tapping her legs together as she spoke.

“We are obviously not looking for a...field asset. Your job, if we hire you on, would be a little more cushy...and by cushy, I mean there would be a minimal chance of you being put in the line of fire. I can’t make a one hundred percent guarantee, but I can promise you would be away from the scary bits...and if someone does come to mess with you? You will find yourself in very good company…”

At this she smiled back up at Sam. Nothing more than a simple smile and acknowledgement. Nothing more needed to be said, for the moment. “First though... What made you decide to break bad as it were? Material gain, helping a friend out...what is your reason for being here and what do you expect to get out of all this?”

“Oh, and job experience. You mentioned selling certain magazines, and that carries a certain risk if you are not careful operating in downtown. Is that the extent of your criminal experience? How often do you take these kind of risks in your day to day?”
>> No. 40600429
File 140894448891.png - (253.71KB , 900x699 , YFW I GM.png )
"That's the question of the evening, isn't it. How do we get a portrait of the princess without showing our hooves..."

She braces her paw against her hoof and pins her ears, as she looks at each of you in turn--her gaze lingering particularly on Malice, for some unknown reason. She nods softly and curls her lip, evidently satisfied in some small way by what she sees.

"You're a bunch of lateral thinkers. What do you make of it?"

"Minimally. I do things quietly, confidentially, and I don't get into business with people who can't keep secrets. I understand this is almost entirely unlike your normal method of operation, which is why I'll be asking for one grand a week, three if you get me into any trouble."

He stretches his neck for a moment, as he rises back to his hind legs; and as he catches his balance, he elects to slouch against the wall.

"And I'm in it for the money. Why else?"
>> No. 40600463
File 140894555800.jpg - (10.37KB , 300x168 , Sunglasses.jpg )

She allowed her smile to fade somewhat, the comment about how they "usually operate" not sitting all that well for her. In the end, though, she bit her tongue because, unfortunately, that also happened to be the truth. It was obvious they needed to change that, and maybe this dragon could be a step in that direction. Maybe. For a price.

"In it for the money...good a reason as any. A grand a week is manageable, along with the hazard long as that money is working for us. One grand a week, plus three if we get you into any hot water, and in return you act as a trusted general manager of our more...mundane operations. Do I understand the terms of your employment correctly?"

She allowed the glasses to slip, though only just a little, giving him a faint outline of her blue eyes, without revealing much of what they actually where. As she had invested in the dye, maybe after today she should go get herself a pair of contacts. Just in case.
>> No. 40600479
File 140894618313.png - (369.58KB , 520x350 , Grin.png )
Igneus grins and nods as he follows the conversation. "I figure we can deduct his costs from our operations. If anyone has any objections, I'd be happy to cover it out of my own cut." He clears his throat. "...Aside from management duties, as I already mentioned I think it'd be in our best interests to keep some discreet third parties on retainer for the purposes of securing assets from our less-than-legal activities."

He takes a deep breath after that clearly-rehearsed little bit. "Basically, I think we'd do well to keep a couple Operators with transportation specialties on hand to grab valuables we pick up and secure them in a safe location for us. Agat could handle them for us, make sure no one bolts with our hard-earned loot."
>> No. 40600505
"You do indeed, Frost."

As Igneus speaks up, Agatium holds his peace and listens intently; and as the proposal concludes, he nods confidently. However, this is clearly nothing more than an air: despite his silence, he keeps looking back and forth between your foreleg and Igneus's hip, and then onto Eska's and Farasi's--either he finds your wrists very fascinating, or he is more than a little intimidated by the sudden abundance of ponies with guns. He is not deterred from speaking, however.

"I have people skills, yes. I can keep an eye on people, track items and exports, watch the bank...I'm good at all that."
>> No. 40600529
File 140894886638.jpg - (639.40KB , 1600x600 , hotline.jpg )

He seemed scared all the same. As he very well should be. It was a completely rational response when faced with a strange new crowd, armed to the teeth and dangerous. He was putting up a very good show all the same, a different sort of nervousness from the skittish jittering of her resident zebra. Of his fears, Frost was largely indifferent towards it. Having ponies be afraid of you had lost its novelty to her months ago. But this was something of a double edged sword. He could at least function, or so he claimed, and unless he had a very good reason, it was not likely he would turn on them.. Or so she thought anyways. Capable, ambitious, but not so much for power as it was for a life of luxury. She bit her lips, considering the topic in silence. In about thirty seconds, she finally decided to speak, doing so with a faint nod in the pink drake's direction.

"I could use a drake with your skills, if you are as good as you say. I think I am going to open this up to further comment of the board before I make my final decision, but first things first...we need to get one last little detail out of the way."

She nodded her head in the direction of the big red one. "Igneus says he can trust you, and I trust him. So, if we do hire you on, I hope this is not going to be an issue. The most important component of any healthy working relationship is You can trust us to keep our end of the bargain, as well as to keep you, more or less, out of any situation you feel you can't handle. In exchange for your services...we wont screw you over."

This time she tilted her head just a little bit of the ways forward, almost leaning her body along with it. Voice dropping low. Not a growl, or a threatening roar, but a voice that was clear and direct.

"Can we expect the same from you?"
>> No. 40600535
"...W-well of course..."

He seems mildly put-off by this display of sudden coldness, and his head-fins rise to attention. Perhaps for fear that his display isn't genuine enough, he punctuates this with rapid nodding and several thumbs up's. Well, not thumbs, but you get the idea. The point is he holds out one digit perpendicular to the rest in order to indicate agreement and acquiescence, okay?

"Not gonna be screwing anyone."
>> No. 40600555
File 140895040063.gif - (1.45MB , 500x281 , Plotting.gif )

"Excellent. Just wanted to get that cleared up"

She says this almost instantly, letting herself smile just a little bit wider as she makes a circular motion with her mechanical foreleg. She did not look pleased, per se, but at the very least she seemed appeased for the moment. That was enough for now.

"Like I said...I am going to open this up for comment before the choice is made. Anyone else have any questions or comments for Agatium here?"

She looked around the room, from her silent Sam to the pair of nerds, to the wiped out visage of Carnage herself. Her brow raising from behind the shades, communicating a level of expectation for the rest of the team.
>> No. 40600723
File 140897880851.png - (117.92KB , 468x346 , lead poisoning.png )

Eska was thoroughly unimpressed. Call her judgemental, which wouldn't be too wrong, but something about his muted pink coat didn't inspire the greatest of confidence, nor the way he slouched and generally seemed to carry the hounded air of someone far in over their head. Obviously, he must have thought he was in a room of hardened criminals. What a joke.

Neither was she too impressed by Frost's recruitment tactic, which was to intimidate him as much as possible, and demand trust upfront like as if it were a simple transaction - much like the one they'd signed that put her as an XO, but, well, that was different.
Watching the two interact, and Igneus grinning like a loon' in between, Eska could feel the onset of a weary grimace. There was little she could do about the matter, except hope for the best; it was just a waste of time when inevitably the drake decided to take his business elsewhere, and they'd have to find a new one. And scare off that one.
She felt she needed to set things right. Even if it meant opening her mouth in front of someone new which was, frankly, not the best case scenario. But the invitation for comments is what pushed her over the edge, and caused her to delicately clear her throat.

"Sorry about Frost, she can be a bit forceful at times."
The definition of tact, really.

She leaned forward, wiping away her disdain for the situation to put on a business-like expression.
"Look, this isn't that hard of a gig. We'll probably have minimal involvement with you in general. We pay you, and you operate the businesses and operations of our company. Until we collect our bit, it'll be like we were never there. It's simple, and low risk if you know what you're doing. " A pause filled the air, as she surveyed the drake up and down, a considering hoof brought up to support her chin. When she continued, it was more in general to everyone in the room.
"Otherwise... What skills does he have, exactly? Outside of sales. He good with running a business? Economics, leadership?" Her head tilted to face the drake, eyebrow raised. "You... Wouldn't happen to have brought a CV along, would you?"
>> No. 40601027
File 140899546468.jpg - (76.28KB , 500x686 , 1408762971287.jpg )
At this Frost titled her head and frowned in a show of mild confusion. Forceful? This was her being nice. She had not made any unreasonable demands or had put on any needless shows of force. She had allowed for that one question, if only to drive home the most important rule to follow. You don’t fuck the other party over. That was necessary, and to be expected if one wishes to deal with criminals. Perhaps there was simply no pleasing Eska at this point. There was also the very real possibility that she actually was being a tad to forceful. She would consult Sam and Igneus after all was said and done. For now, in response to the reiteration of what had already been discussed before, she turned her attention chiefly upon the pink drake in question. Allowing for a very inquisitive expression.

“Obviously it was never required but...if you did happen to bring one, may as well show us.”

What an odd thing to ask, though that would be the extent of her commentary on the matter. Typically in the underworld, it was through personal interview, mixed in with the good word of an inside man, that comprised the most common form of entry into illegal operations. You know a guy who knows a guy who can put in a good word for you. Most did not go through the trouble of typing up a CV. Frost wanted to handle this as a job interview, as that was exactly what this was, but that Eska would expect something like that felt...odd to her. Part of her wanted to make a bigger scene of it, but at the same time, her better senses got the better of her. Better he think them odd then a coop full of wild hens. Even if that was more in line with the truth. Regardless, she would smile and await the answers. After all, beneath the dirt, a nugget of gold could be found. A question worth asking.

“She does have a point though...if you have any other skills you want to mention, now is the time to do so.”
>> No. 40601545
"...Can't say I have."

At the sight of a dissenting voice, no matter how gentle the presentation, Agatium visibly regains a bit of his backbone; he flashes his fangs, which unlike the rest of him are very well-defined--but whether that's a symbolic gesture or not is anyone's guess. He begins gently picking at them with his yellowed foreclaws, searching for errant scraps of rock; and though he finds none, he lets out the smallest of contented belches. In the silence that follows your statement, he lapses into contemplation; he closes his eyes and curls his lips; and after a good ten seconds' time he presents an assembled list of his skills.

"Well, I have a driver's license, I'm good at carrying things, I can run really fast, I'm good at arranging and coordinating clandestine deals, and I can fit a twelve-ounce can in my rectum."

He pauses for the briefest of instants, to examine the back of his paw.

"...Hm. Yep. That's about it."
>> No. 40601631
File 140903193028.gif - (81.90KB , 60x56 , Firebat_SC1_HeadAnim1.gif )
Igneus sighs, massages his temples with a forepaw, and looks up. "...Aaaanyway... I figure he can work his way into mastering whatever he needs to with some on-the-job training." He wrinkles his brow thoughtfully. "Something I hadn't thought of... are we going to need to kit you out with an MMCS?"
>> No. 40601707
File 140904286947.gif - (1.47MB , 859x480 , mlfw1761-1321356747.gif )
Malice was puzzled by the look Eris gave her, but she only stared back cold and hard at the otherworldly being, considering what exactly it was they needed to establish first. "This is going to be very tricky, that much I can make out already." She started, solemn and stoic, her gaze as unwavering as an arctic ice sheet. "The first question I find myself asking is what kind of discrepancies are we even looking for? There are plenty of ways to get dirt on somepony, even a princess I bet, but it's all about the kind of dirt you need." Malice pauses to think...

She bought her hoof to her lips and closed her eyes, before letting it back down again to resume her thoughts on the matter aloud. "Do we need pictures? Do we need another recording, like the last time? I think we need to know 'something' about the information you're looking for before we start coming up with any solid plans to obtain it. At least that's what I make of it."

Last edited at Tue, Aug 26th, 2014 01:53

>> No. 40601723
File 140905072993.png - (283.84KB , 1000x1182 , tumblr_n7nxzyWXQ51rgfcioo2_1280.png )
Lunacy - who had so far been fairly quiet as he was re-attaching his leg - chooses this moment to step up, and trot back over to the group. He cracked his neck - probably not for any particular reason and very likely just because he thought it'd look cool.

"Right, so, we gotta get ourselves dirt on a one certain Moonbutt. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't tried this in the past, though I didn't really have the resources or... motivation to do so."

"So let me just get this out of the way. We can't do what we did before and just call up the Dial-A-Princess hotline. I've been there. It doesn't work. And they really don't like it when you call back over and over."

"But, the Princess of the Night herself. Well, if I recall correctly, she probably does little showy events much like her sister. Not nearly as showy - or common - given she's not quite as revered as her sister is - which is fucking bullshit, if you ask me - but it's just the way things are. Could turn up to one of those. I fear it might be a fairly fruitless endeavor, though."

"I mean, they're still fun and all. I'd recommend going."

"But, there's another avenue of approach. The Night Guard. Princess Luna's hoof-picked private guard. Or maybe they're not hoof picked, I don't know. Either way, there's not too many of them, but they're pretty elite. And they're rather close to the Princess herself, so I figure infiltrating them by some method would probably be our best bet of getting sweet, sweet information on her, at the bonus of getting nice and close, too."

"Unfortunately, doing so through legal methods is... difficult. I don't particularly feel keen in spending twelve years working our way up through the Guard, if we can even manage to get in in the first place!"

"However, finding a guy and stealing his identity feels... wrong. I don't feel write being so... uncaring for the Night Guard. I mean, we're optimally trying to get Luna on our side here. So doing that with some guy... isn't the best of ideas. Anyone else able to think of anything?"
>> No. 40601742
"Ah. Good questions, Malice..."

She furrows her brow and snaps her hoof--don't ask how--having evidently not considered those points herself. It seems that despite being a rebellious conspirator with a plan to murder a god, she hasn't quite gotten a handle on the whole "linear thinking" thing--or perhaps that, too, is another act she's carrying out. Really, it's anyone's guess; but either way she strokes her chin with both forelegs--several times each, in fact, for she evidently cannot decide which is better. She keeps it up even while she's speaking, almost as though she's forgotten she's doing it.

"We need a complete portrait of her. The whole thing. How she walks, how she talks, how she looks at people...we need to watch her for a few days, or else get her into a long conversation, all without her or anyone else catching on..."

She nods to you--enthusiastically when you talk about stealing some random fool's identity, but a little less so when you actually show compassion for your fellow equine. Of course, your invitation to "think of anything" is pretty much a field day for a thing like her; and think of something she does. All at once she perks up and topples headfirst over the back of the counter, only to pop up a scant second later holding a spicy tofu sausage in one hand, a blender in the other, a wedge of stinky cheese impaled on one prong, and a bottle of cola balanced precariously on one hind leg.

"I've got an idea!"
>> No. 40601757
File 140905234522.png - (173.45KB , 1000x1000 , This many!.png )
Lunacy blinks, staring at Vector inquisitively as she does something fairly befitting of her, namely of not caring for order in any sense of the word.

"You know, I know you're Discord and all, but I see Vector, and you crazy."

"But, that's something else completely! Let's hear it!"
>> No. 40601761
File 140905251549.png - (570.88KB , 1280x720 , poni look at it.png )
"...Are you going to eat that?"

Sparkplug pointed at the precariously balanced foodstuffs, reserving revulsion at the stinky cheese.

"What if we used orange poni in a dress to convince one of the Night Guards to spy Princess Luna for us and think it's a special assignment from Princess Celestia?"
>> No. 40601767
"Well, let me ask you this, Mister Lunacy. What scares you? What scares you more than anything?"

She says with an airy sort of giggle, as she throws the blender down on the counter and begins shoveling in the rest of her items willy-nilly. First goes in the sausage, then goes in the cheese, then the contents of the cola bottle--but not the bottle itself, thankfully.
>> No. 40601784
File 140905387705.png - (194.86KB , 1000x1000 , Why yes, I DO want to start my free trial of AOL.png )
"... Well, is that really such a good idea? What if they go and actually tell Princess Celestia?"


Lunacy trails off for a moment, his now-robotic (and quite noticeably so) hoof tapping against his chin.

"Well, let me think about it. Luddites, I guess? Luddites with power? Luddites with overwhelming power?"

"Bastards wouldn't know how to use it if it firmly planted itself upside their flanks, though. I don't really think they count."
>> No. 40601785
File 140905390500.png - (116.03KB , 310x313 , charming ain't he.png )
"Biannual oil change?"

Sparkplug snickered to himself.
>> No. 40601787
File 140905459802.png - (113.19KB , 560x489 , Sparkplug.png )
"...It's a work in progress. Maybe it's so deep undercover black op that officially Celestia knows nothing?"

Sparkplug shrugged.

"Tap poni could probably convince a gerbil it's a dragon, you know."
>> No. 40601794
"Hm. Luddites? I think I understand; they don't believe in using soap."

She shudders and grits her teeth. But then the moment is passed, and she plugs in the blender, pops on the cap, and sets the thing to "puree". With an ear-splitting WHRRRRRRRR, the magnificent mincing machine sets about its task.


"And what about you, Spark Plug?!"

She raises her voice a good deal, so as to be heard over the blender.

"What makes you scared?"
>> No. 40601796
File 140905574997.png - (146.63KB , 1000x1056 , that's nice.png )
"You know, you're right. But we can still probably do better."

"Or maybe I just really don't like them."

Covering his ears at the discomfort of the noise, he frowns over towards her.

"... So, uh, what are you doing with that?"
>> No. 40601798
File 140905584714.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
Sparkplug looked left and right.


He shuddered.

"Fucking storks."
>> No. 40601799
File 140905592686.png - (170.85KB , 1000x1049 , You'll fit nicely in the airlock.png )
A grin quickly forms on Lunacy's face, and he can't help but snicker.

"That bi-annual oil change's not looking so bad after all."
>> No. 40601805

The raises her eyebrow again, as she she is so fond of doing, She was likely expecting any number of things--lawnmowers, large cats, whiny unicorns--but clearly "Stork" wasn't anywhere on that list. Regardless of your unusual choice of phobia, though, she continues to blend her bizarre stomach-shredding pastiche of comestibles; and after thirty long seconds, she shuts the screeching machine off.

"What does it look like, Mister Lunacy?"

With a flick of her paw, she pops the top off; and you can almost hear the dramatic orchestra swell accompanying it. The odor hits you all at once like a brick to the face--old salami, stinky cheese, and crisp cola all forced to co-exist as part of the same unholy bubbling brown-and-red mixture. It is the color and texture of diarrhea, with a smell and taste that is somehow worse; simply looking at the concoction makes you ill...

"I've made you a ticket to see the princess."
>> No. 40601811
File 140905672066.png - (151.92KB , 1000x1000 , whargble.png )
"You know, I don't think the Princess visits the ER for ponies who are about to die of poisoning, especially not serial killers."

This is out of Lunacy's mouth even before the smell had registered in his mind, and was immediately followed by some light, obviously-restrained recoiling.

"Ssssssssooo..." he says, drawing out his word for a few seconds, "... how would this actually help?"
>> No. 40601813
"Sparkplug dreams of world without storks. Sparkplug still has a dream, deep-rooted in the Equestrian Dream, a dream of a world in which Sparkplugs pups will live in a world without storks, in peace."

He blinked.

"Provided Sparkplug lives long enough to have pups. So what is that disgusting mixture supposed to be?"
>> No. 40601820
File 140905756135.png - (137.46KB , 900x810 , me gusta.png )
"Well, let me ask you fine gents this.

"What happens when you drink a bunch of soda, eat a bunch of spicy food, and then fall asleep?"
>> No. 40601823

Sparkplug blinked.

"Oh. Ooooooooooooh. You want us to meet Princess Luna in the dream world when she's battling nightmares?"
>> No. 40601824
File 140905776372.png - (173.77KB , 1000x1135 , oh.png )
"... Bad things. Like reeeeally bad things. Like... nightmares."

Lunacy pauses, the gears spinning in his mind as the whole thing ticks into place.

"... But I thought it was just a story, that Luna visited ponies in the night!"
>> No. 40601828
File 140905786931.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
"Stupid Lunaci! Stories always have grains of truth in them!"
>> No. 40601831
File 140905794293.png - (151.92KB , 1000x1000 , whargble.png )
"Yeah, but I'd expect it'd be something different than 'A princess visited ponies in their dreams', like, it'd be a bedtime story or something to convince small foals to go to bed!"
>> No. 40601837
File 140905812379.png - (113.19KB , 560x489 , Sparkplug.png )
"The Princess of the Night is the Princess of Dreams, too, stupid poni. There are old stories from days of Living Elements where Princess of the Night came to Generosity's sister in her dreams to help her realize and fix a grave mistake."

Sparkplug scoffed.

"Uncultured buffoon."
>> No. 40601839
"Ah, there you go. Clever lads, you are..."

At Lunacy's skepticism, however, she chuckles; and, in the fashion of an overgrown cat, sprawls out on the countertop with her belly up in the air and her paw hanging lazily over the side.

"So what, you're willing to accept that there's two princesses you've never seen, that the sky is raining chocolate, and that the most popular religious figure on the planet is a fraud...but 'magical princess visits your nightmares' is a little too much for you?"

She barely stifles a snort as she finishes up, but she's unable to hide the Cheshire grin that's playing at her lips.
>> No. 40601843
File 140905831775.png - (116.03KB , 310x313 , charming ain't he.png )
"If she doesn't then she's not real Princess. It's what Princess of the Night ought to do, combat nightmares and visit dreams. It's logical."
>> No. 40601845
File 140905842395.png - (151.92KB , 1000x1000 , whargble.png )
"Oh c'mon, that was like, a thousand years ago! Who knows how the stories have twisted and changed! I also read stories about that time involving space stations and interdimensional rifts!"

"... wait. Wait, hold on, no, I think that one was fan fiction."

"Well... yeah."

Lunacy rubs the back of his head, silently wondering how Vector simply couldn't se this, and simply just not considering that perhaps he was the fool.

"I mean, there's gotta be a lot of ponies having nightmares at once. How can she visit all of them? It's, like, Santa. How does he visit all the houses of all the good fillies and colts every Hearth's Warming?"

"... I mean, if it wasn't, like, the parents... who had money."
>> No. 40601846
File 140905855491.png - (217.65KB , 531x300 , seduction attempt.png )
"She magical god princess, stupid poni!"

Sparkplug scratched his chin.

"Though is logistical problem. Maybe she visits only the worst nightmares?"
>> No. 40601853

Vector raises both of her eyebrows in tandem, now, her forked tongue softly flickering between her lips. She wears her approval openly, now, as she nods and softly applauds.

"Clever, mister Sparkplug. Very, very clever.

"We must understand that magic isn't quite how it used to be, and Luna's omnipresence has surely diminished--but if she is the real Luna, that won't have stopped her. It stands to reason that she only visits the very worst nightmares that are currently going on, where she might do the most good.

"Ergo, Messers Spark Plug and Lunacy, I propose to entrap you all within a terrible, terrible nightmare--all of you, in the same nightmare, at the same time. Which is going to be a little tricky."
>> No. 40601854
File 140905887667.png - (173.45KB , 1000x1000 , This many!.png )
"... Yeah, y'know what, sure. I figure I'm gonna be outvoted on this one anyway, so... why not!"
>> No. 40601856
File 140905899105.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
"...It will be storks forcing us into a rapey oil change, won't it be."
>> No. 40601862
"I don't know. Really depends on what your subconscious conjures up, doesn't it.

"That being said, getting you all in the same exact portion of the dream-world will be difficult. We're going to need equipment. None of that fancy dream-chair stuff, that'd be a little overkill--what I need are four bass speakers, two treble speakers, and a digital player capable of interfacing with both.

"...You can just go down to the store and get those, of course. But, don't feel obliged to pay them."
>> No. 40601864
File 140905950401.png - (194.86KB , 1000x1000 , Why yes, I DO want to start my free trial of AOL.png )
"You know, on one side that kinda seems like overkill. I mean, storming a store to get some speakers and AV equipment."

"But shit, doesn't that just sound like fun?"
>> No. 40601865
File 140905957015.png - (34.84KB , 159x160 , snkh snkh snkh.png )
"Let's rob a musical store!"

He paused for a moment.

"We gonna need a van to haul that stuff."
>> No. 40601935
Club Lucius. At least, that's what he thought the sign said. Reading was hard, all the different symbols swirling around on the board. But, more importantly, it looked like a club. More or less.
He opened the door and stepped in, taking in the familiar sounds; people arguing, music, the occasional whistle. It was comforting. This was his place, his domain. "Yes. Good." The words still didn't come like he'd prefer, but they came. Better than most days. He sat down at a table and took out his sign, holding it in his mouth.
*Homelss. Job? Good kikr..*
Perhaps the last bit was unnecessary. He was twice the size of most ponies, and barely fit behind the table he sat at. Of course he was strong. His duster, now nearly threadbare, still covered him pretty well, the faded red going well with his grey coat. He'd need a new one soon. Which would mean he'd need money. Therefore, a job.
Maybe this place would bring him more luck.

Last edited at Tue, Aug 26th, 2014 09:01

>> No. 40602002
File 140907292913.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg, hearing what was about to go down, took a draw of beer. "So, we're going to knock over some electronics shop for speakers and a music player? I see no way in which this can go terribly, horribly wrong. I'm in."
>> No. 40602347
(My bad, edit, wrong place.)
So much for luck. Eight sat at the table, sign in mouth, waiting, hoping someone here needed dumb muscle. There was usually someone...

Last edited at Tue, Aug 26th, 2014 20:52

>> No. 40602664
As everyone spoke, a poor blue lump of beer-gut was lying down on the couch, making miserable noises every now and again. His cowboy hat lies over his face, blocking any and all lights. One of his hooves idly rubs his temples to try and help his splitting headache. Concerning how much he drank the night before, only Kreig would truly know the hell Suave is going through.

"...Yer... Yer gonna... Rob a buckin' store... Jus' to get some... Cheap ass damn speakers. ...Sumbitch, you guys... Can't we just slow tha hay down, an'... Buuuuuck..."

He rolls over miserably, burying his face into the couch cushions.

"...Krrrg. Rrm grrnr pyrrk..."

Last edited at Tue, Aug 26th, 2014 19:59

>> No. 40602681
File 140911354929.jpg - (43.72KB , 640x480 , We heart richard hawk.jpg )

She nodded all the while as he went and listed his other talents, right up until he came to the very last, and at that she just stopped. She stopped her nods, titled her head even further, blinked a few times behind her shades, and pursed her lips in a moment of awkward acknowledgement. She wondered briefly if this was the normal response to hearing of ones talents of shoving cans up their rectum, though at the same time she wondered if there ever could be a true and proper response to that. Weirdness aside, that actually might come in handy, she thought. Its immediate use eluded her for the moment, but someday it may just be revealed to her. In the end, she ended just as she began. With a simple nod of her head.

"Well then...thank you for being forward with us. If anyone else wants to add anything, now is the time. Otherwise...I think we might just have a use for you. If an MMCS is an issue, Igneus, as well as myself, will be able to help out."
>> No. 40603306
File 140917463992.png - (167.75KB , 961x956 , tumblr_mj8965HbHq1rg6zkao1_1280.png )

Eska and her sinking suspicions weren't going to be rescued any time soon, something as basic as a CV lacking.
His skills though, if he weren't just boasting and Igneus' opinion was actually worth two chits, were impressive. The last one in particular made Eska widen her eyes, startled, before she nodded vaguely in some approval, letting out a too nervous titter of laughter under her breath while glancing at Farasi. "Isn't this hilarious, hysterical?" Her gaze said. Ha ha ha.

Her calm collected itself as the others did, though her spot on the ground no longer seemed as comfortable as it had been before, a vague smile of awkwardness worthy of the zebra sitting next to her a constant. It was like someone had put a hot plate where she sat because all she could imagine were twelve-ounce cans. Talking about MMCS, an aug which was simple and understandable and had nothing to do with anything with social interaction, prompted her to dislodge the nervousness in her throat.
"Yeah, uh... I can, I can do the MMCS, install it. They're cheap so, uh, I think we can do them for free for you. Consider it a..."

She looked uncertainly up at Frost, grasping for words.
"Company bonus?"

Last edited at Wed, Aug 27th, 2014 14:26

>> No. 40603574
File 140918795318.gif - (661.44KB , 500x246 , what.gif )
'Why yes, it most definitely is completely hysterical' was the impression Farasi wanted to give when Eska looked his way. He ended up falling short and just looking absolutely flabbergasted. The tight, mangled musculature of his bad side was painfully extended as a result of his eyebrows shooting up into his hairline from sheer, unadulterated surprise, and this effect was only made worse by the fact that he'd spent most of the last little while sullen and stony. It was like facial whiplash.

Now that he was in this state, it was a bit of a feat to go back to his earlier easy, contemplative silence. He'd felt invisible, like he'd briefly faded out of the world, and as he jerkily twisted his head back around to stare at the pink dragon again, he desperately tried to recapture that feeling. It was no use, though; he couldn't stop thinking about that twelve-ounce can. That was impressive, is what that was. Luna's freezing dildo, this dragon was clearly the best they could have hoped for.

Sure, he reminded Farasi of himself a bit, which was nearly enough to grate on him. But fuck it, he'd do. His more characteristic awkward grin crawled to life on his good side, and he nodded at Eska's relatively fitting terminology in a faintly encouraging fashion. Company bonus was a good word for it. Yeah, that sounded great.

Although, really, anything that brought this to a close sounded good in his book. He had no taste for these intrigues about businesses and employees. Maybe the twelve-ounce can bit, though. That was something.
>> No. 40603793
It's quiet in the concourse tonight--like it has every night since you've been back. Without anyone but you and the Sickles calling this place home, and with nobody particularly interested in bringing the place back to life, the wind is the closest thing you have to company. Well, the wind, and Guttersnipe.

"Cor. S'bloody 'igh up, this is..."

From your perch on the scaffolds, you can see the city stretched out below you like a roadmap. Things have only gotten worse since the Night of Fire: normally rescue and cleanup details would have been dispatched the very next day, but they had bigger things to worry about this year. Crashed cars and smashed-out windows were left unchecked; and it turns out, there is a little weight behind that Slippery Slope Theory everyone likes to try and disprove. Now the streets are ripe with gang activity in a way they haven't been in decades--Bangers and Redhads have moved in from both sides, each hungry to get a piece of the pie--anyone dumb enough to still be in town is paying arms and legs in protection money, and the only thing that keeps them out of your territory is the complete lack of anything worth stealing.

"Don' think Oi like it much..."

Snipe is perched in the doorway, looking out at the road with all due trepidation. To a pegasus like you it's no big deal; but to a fragile and un-augmented thing like him, he may as well be putting his head in a lion's mouth.

"I've got one already. But, thanks."

Agatium cautiously strokes his head-fins, and after a moment stretches his arms out.

"If we don't need anything else, I'm gonna go get myself acquainted with the area."
>> No. 40603794
File 140921634423.jpg - (120.15KB , 1000x667 , Firebat_SC2_Cncpt1.jpg )
The big red drake tilts his head to this side inquisitively. "You want me to show you around some, or did you want to form your own impressions?"
He glances back around the room. For the moment, it seemed like they'd discussed what needed discussing... but who knew what Frost was thinking at any given moment.
>> No. 40603796
File 140921744193.png - (458.31KB , 659x673 , Can't be with him.png )
>Pulling on the cigarette plucked between her lips, the smooth smoke helping to take her mind off the constant itching left over from her Scratch addiction - its constant itching need all but driving her absolutely insane before it inevitably killed her... again.

>Looking down at the burning wrecks of the city below, Carnage saw nothing but the leftover spoils of a bunch of animals allowed to turn on each other. Oh how she despised this world, full of hatred and rot. How she wished a nuke would come on down to wipe it all away whilst she and her crew watched it happen from the safest bunker in the world.

>And that's why she stuck around wasn't it... her crew. It wasn't the individuals, truth be told she hated them all just about equally: Eska with her fucking attitude, Frost with her idiotic sense of superiority, Lancer with his self-esteem shit, Sam with his bloated putrid ego and Igneus... Gods... she didn't even know Igneus. Individually she'd either avoid them like the plague or straight up kill them for the disrespect they'd done to her at one point or other but that's not what this was about... was it.

>This was about the way Carnage had been brought up, it was about the rules she'd been raised by; the template the Old Man had used to forge a carbon copy of a legend in the hopes to make up for the past's mistakes.

>The one rule, the one most important rule being that no Operator could possibly succeed alone. Because no matter how good you are, no matter how perfect or ruthless you became; one person would always slip up eventually. A single mistake, a moment's inattention and then it was over... the greatest operator in the world turned into a housing development for maggots. And for those reasons, a crew was the most important part of an operator. They were your failsafe against a disgraceful death - an insurance of sorts to make sure fate wouldn't repeat itself. And for that insurance's sake, she would suffer all the shit and disgrace they put her through. She suffered being made addicted to smack and being forced to shove a defibrillator in her heart to bring her back everytime she died... and died she did... everytime she took a new dose of the stuff.

>Turning her head to look at Guttersnipe, Carnage saw the one member of the crew she didn't outright detest. For all his flaws and temper tantrums, Guttersnipe was what she might have been if things hadn't panned out quite like they had. He was a good kid. And deep down, she envied him for it.

You get used to it when you remember that the shit we walk on can collapse at any moment into way bigger holes than this.
>> No. 40603814
"...Cor, I spose it can. That's a scary thought..."

Evidently comforted--or perhaps terror-numbed--by this, he folds his forelegs and sits on his knees, looking out over the city with a contemplative gaze; most likely in imitation of you, but perhaps he actually as something on his mind. It is strange, looking upon him; for even though his cheeks are cut and his fur is matted and the stench of the gutter clings to him, he's the picture of health compared to the children you were raised beside. No extra limbs, no bleeding eyes, no radiation symptoms of any kind--most of the first world would pity this child quite profusely, but he still had it better than you did.

*brrrrINKCh! brrrrrINKCh!*

There's a call on your phone, then. Its jagged, pointedly annoying ringing is, for all its unwelcomeness, a good sign: it's the old man, according to caller ID. All the way from Manehattan, assuming his journey went well.

...That is a pretty big thing to assume, though...

"I'd rather come with you, if it's all the same. Carpet makes my claws itch."
>> No. 40603820
File 140921899295.gif - (81.90KB , 60x56 , Firebat_SC1_HeadAnim1.gif )
He nods, and repeats the gesture towards the others. "I'll be around, you know how to get in touch. Just lemme know where and when you need me."

He lightly bumps the other dragon's side and pads out ahead of him. "C'mon. I'll show you what we're callin' our base of operations."
>> No. 40603826
File 140921947956.jpg - (452.20KB , 1440x900 , Black_Lagoon_full_944030.jpg )
>Picking up her phone from one of duster's deep pockets, Carnage flipped open the phone and held it up to her ear. Hopefully things had gone well and his business out of town was well underway.

You alright?

>Straight to the point then, no point in cutting corners with this man. He wasn't the type to call and ask how her day was.
>> No. 40603834
"What, this isn't it? You have such a nice sofa..."

He chuckles to himself as he follows out after you, evidently entranced by your bloody-diarrhea-colored floor and your off-grey ceiling tiles.

"Yer damn right I am."

The noise of a bustling highway carries through the phone, underneath his voice. He's calling you from the public, right out in the open--anyone's guess what he's open to, then.

"Got in touch with Asanna and her boys. Took the liberty of getting you on the company blacklist--nobody from the LC is gonna be cashing in that bounty of yours."
>> No. 40604434
File 140927790402.png - (76.18KB , 497x155 , Godamn it.png )
>Taking in the news her dear own father had for her, Carnage frowned and pulled on her cigarette all the harder in annoyance.

'Appreciate the help Guy but its not like I need you to hold my hoof all the damn time.

>Muttering under her breath quite loudly enough to be heard over the line.

I'd like to see any of those fuckers try to cash in on it anyways. Fuckers 'd end up in a low-city gutter by morning.
>> No. 40604551
"Don't bust my balls about it, Sugarshot. Just seems to me like someone who fucks around with the IBA--and gets caught doing it--might need a little hand when it comes to staying out of the spotlight."

There's the sound of an opening car door, followed by an abrupt muffling of the highway--though that is, in turn, supplanted by the familiar rumble of an automobile in motion, as heard from within its cabin.

"Speakin of, what is that about? Which one of you crazy motherfuckers got the idea to go in and pick a fight with 'em on their home turf?"
>> No. 40604596
File 140929157844.png - (111.18KB , 557x221 , Sigh.png )
>Sighing into the phone, Carnage leaned back against an old worn out support beam jutting out of the ground and thought back to the incidents that had lead to the raid of the single organization that managed all bounties in the city and beyond and how, in a desperate gamble to get rid of the prices on their heads, they'd wiped their records clean.

Does it matter?

Point is that it worked just fine and we're free now... more or less.

>Right... now they had a new bounty for their attack on upper Canterlot to account for, though, at least this one was considerably smaller than the previous one.
>> No. 40604704
"Kinda does. I wanna give that sumbitch a medal."

There's a strange air to his voice: a lightness of tone; a giddiness comparable to someone in the center-pit of a quality comedy club, or a singer about to take the stage, or at the very least a drinker in the company of friends. It is strange to hear such gaiety from him--for it is plain to see from strength of words and tone alone that he is merrier now than he has been since you set foot in the pit. For the first time in nearly two decades, he sounds well and truly like he's in a good goddamn mood. He'd probably keep on talking, but at that very moment a muffled voice can be heard through the call; and what follows is a moment of audible incredulity followed by a snap of:

"No, I don't want a fuckin' taco. What kinda question is that? Y can't do this kinda work on a full stomach, jackass."

There is a murmured breath of what sounds like apology, before he turns his attention back to your call.

"Y'see, that was a brave goddamn thing, and it's got me...thinkin."
>> No. 40605480
Well, that was a bust.
After a few days of fishing for jobs, he'd found nothing. Well, maybe it was time to do something on his own. Shake down some stoners, or something. but stoners were so... so docile. Maybe a robbery? No, no. No disguise. Maybe just mug someone. Yeah. Quick, easy way to get some money, then get some stuff for bigger operations. Just mug someone!
Eight Ounces didn't know why he hadn't thought of it before.
>> No. 40605742
File 140937878651.png - (94.00KB , 287x402 , wah.png )
>There was definitely odd to hear that old man with any intonation of joy in his voice. For as long as she'd know him he had always been a grim and dark son of a gun but now... the man sounded like a giddy schoolgirl.

Thinking about... what?

>She said in a worried tone. Glad as she was that the old man was in such high spirits, it also left her wondering what kind of things were going through his head whilst in strange state.
>> No. 40605743
File 140937923474.jpg - (15.81KB , 400x272 , flatline.jpg )

In the still of the night, Farasi's cell phone vibrates once, and falls silent. He's received a text message--a long-winded and inordinately verbose text message, but a text message all the same. There is emotion within it, and significance that cannot be understated; for it was penned with a loving hoof and a heavy heart. The message is a familiar one, with familiar implications and familiar consequences. By age twenty-one, it is safe to assume that the average Equestrian has seen this message at least once--and surely it has been witnessed by Farasi, and Frost, and Sam, and possibly even Carnage. The text is clunky and slothful, and laden down with apologies and caveats and what-if's-and-maybes; here a mention of a note from a father in a faraway country, there a reminder to keep in touch, and in between the two a dozen saccharine proverbs. However, this is all so much cruft; for though the specifics change each time, and the authors usually take great pains to obscure it, the message is always simple:

I'm leaving.
>> No. 40605769
File 140938868201.png - (46.75KB , 500x638 , unknown.png )
The first time Farasi read the message, he didn't know what to make of it.

It was a strange feeling; he knew the words, he knew what they were saying, but when he had to read them all in that specific order from that specific pony, they might as well have been nonsense. He sat there, hunched over on his shitty, stiff bed in that shitty, cramped stall in the Concourse and kept reading it over and over again. It felt like it was a thousand miles away, like he was peering at it through a telescope. The second time, he began to understand what it was saying, and the facts aligned themselves in his head. Eska had used many words, but all they meant was that she was gone. Gone back to her father, back to the life she kept talking about. It was so reasonable, so expected that it didn't make any sense for Farasi to feel surprise or shock. That didn't stop him. He felt weightless, light-headed, numb. Like it was all a dream.

The third time he read it, he had to doubt. Maybe it was a prank. Eska loved that sort of thing. She had a wonderful sense of humour. She was probably just pulling a fast one on him. He even laughed to prove that he got the joke. It was over, he'd cottoned onto it. It was all just some funny, sick, twisted joke. But the fourth time he read it, the false, whispery laughter died in his throat and settled into a cold, heavy lump in his chest. His grip on the phone tightened, loosened, tightened again in indecision. He lost track of how many times he read through it, as he began skipping around, going up and down and in circles, picking the message apart from a dozen different angles, as if trying to find something in it besides what it was: a goodbye.

It wasn't forever. She wasn't dead. And now she wouldn't be, she'd be safe and happy with her family. That was what she’d always wanted; to go back and patch things up. Fix her home, be with her dad again. She didn’t want to be here, and now she wasn’t. Everything she could have wanted. So why did it hurt so much? He wanted to be happy for her. He should be. Was he really so selfish that he wanted her to stay just for him?

His vision was blurring, but only in one eye. There was something in his good one, and he screwed it shut and desperately rubbed at it. His mechanical one, the one she had made, felt heavy in his skull and it ached, but it was clear. He shook his head roughly, and if he had digits his grip might have crushed the phone there and then. His hooves were shaking. It was hard to believe. He didn’t want to believe. He wanted to believe that she was right outside the door, about to burst in and laugh at his stupidity for falling for it, and then she’d laugh at the fact that he took it seriously enough to cry over it. She’d pat him on the back and say he was a silly zebra, and he’d say he was and they’d have a good laugh about it and go on like nothing happened.

He waited long enough. He lost track of time, so he didn’t really know, but it was long enough for his sobs to quiet and still, his tears to dry up and his throat to burn. She didn’t come, because she was gone. Farasi was alone. He didn’t want to be alone, so he slipped on the jacket she found so funny and went for a walk. Yes, that would clear his head. He just needed to take one step, then another. He meant to go to the bar, get a drink, that sort of thing, but he kept walking right past it, and from there he lost his way. The air might clear his head. Or it might not. He wasn’t sure of much of anything.
>> No. 40605770
File 140938877711.jpg - (22.92KB , 288x288 , anton.jpg )
"Business. Lots of business."

The background sound of the car changes, then, from the smooth glide of a highway to the rough drone of a gravel road: they're going out of the way, by the sound of it. Thanks to the miracle of modern telecommunication, however, the signal doesn't so much as dim.

"See, your mother and I, we always worked on a very simple principle: that basically, what we do is, ya know, the Equestrian dream. We go to work, we make lots of money cuz we're good at what we do, so on and so forth. And it always seemed really unfair to me that we got chased by the cops for it--cuz ya know, what we do is a lot like bankers, and salesmen, and shit. The only difference is we tell people we're gonna fuck em before we do it."

The engine roars a little, now. It seems like they're going up a hill--or else just picking up speed for who-knows-what. It seems to be the latter, given that all of a sudden your phone call is drowned out, completely and utterly, by a muffled cacaphony--the sound of shattering glass and splintering wood, interspersed with screaming steel and tumbling rocks! It's a sound you are familiar with by this point--the sound of something very large going through a wall at a very high velocity. This is followed, in turn, by more familiar sounds: gunshots, from high-end automatics and thunderous hoof-cannons, interspersed with the odd cry of "COME GET SOME, YA SONS OF BITCHES!"

But then, a mere twelve seconds later, the noise is over and the conversation resumes.

"Then they had Royal Blue and the ESID crackdown and Lonestar beefing up and that whole thing, so we really got pushed to the sidelines. But I'm sick of that. I'm up here now, seeing if I can get the LC to expand into Canterlot a little more--dunno if it was on the news, but I managed to get a few Lonestars with a bone to pick on my side, scored us a few supply choppers and materials for an HQ and such.

"Basically, what I'm saying here, is--SHIT!"

The phone hits the ground, with the familiar clatter of plastic against stone, and then flesh against plastic; and then, though it is muffled, you are treated the sound of a horseshoe cracking against someone's jaw, and then the sound of someone's head cracking against a wall, and then the heavy breathing and pseudosilence that follows a very desperate fistfight.

"...Anyway, what I'm saying is, I think it's time we had us a second onyx age."
>> No. 40605771
File 140938879066.png - (45.58KB , 676x112 , huh 3.png )

>Listening to the very various sounds and conversations going through the line, Carnage found herself at once cringing for the old man's sake and wanting to shoot people dead who would want to harm the last remnant of her bloodline.

>Still, the man himself was miles away in an unknown location and all she could do was listen on the other end of the phone, trusting that he'd make it out alright... and in the end, he did... just as he always did. But what he was proposing now was interesting, new, revolutionary even...

>Sucking in the smoke of her cigarette all the way back to the filter, Carnage tossed the used thing away and let her gaze wander up towards the metal ceiling that stood above the warrens. A ceiling made of concrete and steel... of ancient homes and livelihoods now forgone to rubble.

Its a nice dream... a good idea even.

If it brings her honor...

>Letting her voice trail off, Carnage's tired eyes wandered off again into the scenery of rust and rubble.

Do you think its something she would want?
>> No. 40605772
"I don't know."

He's remarkably quick with that reply--especially given that, almost without fail, he's had his hoof on the dead mare's pulse. Most of the time he could tell you what she'd think of the crew, of your plans--hell, he coulda told you what she thought of your favorite soda; so hearing him say "I don't know"--especially so readily, with such a degree of nonchalance--is quite an unusual occurrence. The silence that follows this statement is puncuated, quite neatly, by the muted thoom of an explosion heard remote.

"She went home and had you a reason. But she didn't need to make a million dollars real fast, and she wasn't living in a time like this. The only thing I can say for sure is she'd want was best for you.

"So I guess the question is, whadda you think? Cuz, I think it sounds like a goddamn barrel'a monkeys."
>> No. 40606441
File 140946275688.png - (268.06KB , 806x302 , Lighting up.png )
Celestia fucking damn it you old ass fuck that's not the type of answer I was looking for and you know it!

>Carnage loudly griped at the phone with more than the usual force in her voice. She could feel the itching start again all across her body - that damned feeling she got whenever she was in need of a new fix of scratch.

>Using her free hoof, she ruffled through her pockets for her pack of ciggs and roughly tore a stick out with her teeth. Between alcohol and cigarettes, Carnage had somehow managed to struggle through her cravings until they became unbearable and almost killed her with the intensity of the symptoms. Puking... shaking... cold sweat and heart failure... oh yea, the symptoms got worse... way worse and would inevitably lead her to taking another dose. Another damn dose that gave her a few minutes of heaven before killing her again. Hopefully her new aug would work as advertized and jumpstart her heart again when she did but...

>Sighing with exasperation into the phone, Carnage lit up her cigarette and blew out a cloud of smoke.

I think its a goddamn good idea if it somehow adds to the name's rep old man.

Because I swear, if Lonestar somehow takes the credit for anything I ever do again, I'll make it my own personal fucking crusade to burn those fuckers to the GODDAMN GROUND!
>> No. 40606442
File 140946404884.png - (21.42KB , 207x225 , Untitled.png )
"Ah, that's my girl. Had a feeling you'd be a little sore over that..."

The other end of the line is now swathed in a velvet silence--the proverbial afterglow of a shootout, where there is not another living thing to make even the faintest noise. His voice carries with a renewed grandeur, now that his business is done.

"Look, you're a grown mare now, and you are clearly capable of handling yourself without me. It'll add something to the name, yeah; but it's all a question of whether or not that's something you want added to it. If that makes sense."
>> No. 40606622
File 140950968374.png - (111.18KB , 557x221 , Sigh.png )
>Biting back the very first sharp reply that came to mind, Carnage pushed the achy itchiness of the drug to the furthest recesses of her mind as she analyzed the question at hand. To be the founder of a new Onyx Age would be a great deed, something people would look up to and admire in days to come... but that wouldn't be right for her.

You know I can't be a hero, it wouldn't be right.

But... if we can twist the stories to fit the name... I think its something worth looking into.
>> No. 40607079
File 140952353172.gif - (0.99MB , 500x281 , wait, what.gif )
"Well then. That sounds like a plan."

Somewhere in the background of the call, a single gunshot rings out; and then there is the sound of a slamming car door, and the gentle roar of a motor. In any other town, the police would have heard the gunshot, and they'd be hot on the trail; but the old man has the liberty of working under Asanna, and no clean cop in the RSNM is gonna come anywhere near his caper here. While pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps might be fun, there are definitely some perks to having friends in high places.

"Snow is more of a classic face than you are. You can probably get her to front for you pretty well; you can play the dark horse. You remember how, don't you?"
>> No. 40607304
File 140953072571.png - (108.68KB , 900x814 , WOOT.png )
"...Hello, Club Lucius!"
The mare couldn't have picked a worse way to enter the club. From the way she walks, swaying between tables with the very eye of Curiosity herself, to the way she dresses, in that fresh-off-the-coat-hanger duster coat that still has the creases in it, she exudes newb. She is the newb. If she were to ever join a game of...wossname...that game where you play five-on-five matches. That one. Yeah, if she joined it everyone would leave.
Her face is far too bright for a manual laborer. Then again, she's a unicorn. What'd you expect? Of course she doesn't lift things. She's probably some kind of writer, one of those romantic, glass-half-full types.
Yeah, it looks a little fake. Everyone's smile is fake here.

"Now...What kind of work can I get?"
>> No. 40607310
File 140953124057.png - (217.65KB , 531x300 , seduction attempt.png )

>Said a scrawny midget of a Diamond Dog with a grin.
>> No. 40607311
File 140953131189.jpg - (7.22KB , 216x233 , NO.jpg )
"Not that kinda work," the mare replies.
>Just wait 'till you hear her nickname.
"Who're you?"
>> No. 40607441
File 140953691744.png - (243.57KB , 838x347 , buzzkill.png )

Yea... I remember how.

>Breathing out once more into the phone, she saw what the man was suggesting and how she should go about it. He was right, she did know how to black the dark horse, she'd been thought that much by the man himself all those years ago.

Either way... I'll talk to you later.

Right now I have... things... to take care of.

>Those things being to score more scratch before the puking started...
>> No. 40607446
File 140953764368.gif - (93.94KB , 501x412 , THATS ALL FOLKS .gif )
After seemingly hours of walking, hours of being alone with nothing but his own misery. His own fears and loss. After hours of... being without her. Farasi had passed most every bar in the area, he'd gone by club lucius, he'd gone by the sanctum, he'd gone by Old Billy's. He'd gone by every night club, every parlor, ever strip joint. Farasi walked for hours without a thought in his head except for that of Eska's face. The night was cold, the night was lonely. A chill wind blew through the streets and even packed as they ever where, he was alone in the crowd.

But all this, all this walking, all this misery, brought him into light. When Farasi paused to catch his breath a moment, he found himself in front of a funny little place. Not a bar, no, it was a diner. A quaint little diner on the corner of two main roads, a block or two from club lucius. More specifically, it was a Sushi joint.

The only sushi joint in mid-town.

And looking inside, he could see the only sushi-chef in mid town, his giant of a friend Jet, working away happily in the kitchen of the diner.

Perhaps he didn't need to be alone.
>> No. 40607568
File 140954844576.gif - (37.27KB , 290x320 , friend computer.gif )
Farasi blinked dazedly at the bright, shining lights of the building in front of him, his legs aching in a manner frighteningly similar to when they'd walked to the Lowest. It was almost difficult to stand, and he swayed and bobbed in place as he tried to focus on what he was looking at. His ragged breathing stilled as his gaze drifted inside, and the shapes solidified into a cohesive whole long enough to catch sight of a very familiar face. Not the one he couldn't get out of his head, but it was a striking enough sight to get him to stop, and one question cut through the fog in his mind:

How the fuck did I get all the way here? It was like something out of a dream. He still felt as numb as he had when he read the text. His eyes were lingering on Jet, he realized belatedly. Was it really him? Several long, slow breaths and staccato beats of his heart came and went as he just stood there like an idiot, dazed and confused.

The noise of the door opening raked at his ears, but he failed to react. His mouth was agape and his good eye was a fiery red, while the one she had made was dry as a bone. Despite this, his long, drawn face almost seemed symmetrical in its dull, abject misery. Farasi trudged towards the counter like a corpse, his mismatched eyes locked on Jet all the while. His stride was uneven and ungainly, but he gave no sign of relief when he dragged himself into a stool and collapsed into it.

"... Hi," Farasi managed. His throat was dry, and it came out rougher, coarser and quieter than he normally sounded. He didn't seem to notice, working his jaw lifelessly. Hunched in the stool with the posture of an abandoned puppet, his wide eyes crinkled, eyebrows tilting imploringly.

"She's gone," he said instantly, and slumped against the counter. A foreleg sprung out to steady him, but he nearly flopped over anyway from its lazy, half-hearted motions. At last, he wound up with his hoof pressed furiously against his temple and staring up at the much taller pony, searching for something only he could see.

Last edited at Sun, Aug 31st, 2014 22:14

>> No. 40607724
"Alright. You have a great night, girl."

And then, just as quickly as the conversation, it ends; with the click of the phone being shut, he leaves you to your own devices, for better or for worse.
>> No. 40607736
When Sam saw Farasi enter the diner he knew instantly something was wrong. So with a quick word to his boss he departed from the kitchen, it was late and customers still here where few. So the old Ibexian was more than capable of managing the kitchen for a few minutes while Sam spoke to his friend. He took off his apron, placed his knives down on the chopping board and left the kitchen, vaulting the counter to stand before Farasi as he slumped down.

'She's gone.'

In a way, Sam was happy to hear those words. He had tried to like Eska, he had tried so very very hard to be kind to her and to make her feel comfortable in the world she so obviously didn't belong in. What had those efforts gotten him? What had his kindness gotten him? A gun pressed to his temple. Eska was not his friend, Eska was neurotic, Eska was idiotic, Eska was dangerous. He'd always thought Farasi deserved better than her. He'd always thought she was a bad influence, leading him deeper into the rabbit hole that was her own paranoia, preying upon his insecurities. And now she'd broken him, she'd brought him close, made sure he needed her. And then she'd left.

But Sam wasn't happy, because she'd hurt Farasi. She'd proved Sam right in doing the thing he'd feared most. Hurting a stallion very dear to him. Sam moved close, sitting down beside Farasi for a moment. Fidgeting. Then seconds later, as Farasi slammed his hoof into his temple, Sam stood back up and stepped right beside him, wrapping his arms tight about Farasi. He pulled him close, arm about his shoulders going up to rest against his head. The other coiled about his chest holding him close. H wracked his brain for what to say, usually he had some charismatic platitude, some quote to show his morals. Now he had nothing. Finally, he simply said.

"At least you know she'll be safer now. You can rest easy knowing that out of this business, her life will be much quieter, much safer. Maybe one day when we're all rich and retired, you can go see her again?"
>> No. 40608156
File 140959663828.gif - (719.68KB , 493x315 , 35l1nIL.gif )
It was a relatively calm and cool night in Canterlot when Malice decided to take a stroll down town. The streets had grown silent without the sound of clamorous clip-clops marking the sidewalks or rowdy horns blasting at the air in the street. You know, the usual hustle and bustle you could find during daylight hours.

The absence of ponies was mostly due in part because the streets were a tad more dangerous in the evening, with mysterious shadows and the overzealous and ever watchful eye of the law, she couldn't blame them. Apartment bedrooms and neon lit clubs were all filled at about this hour. The only ponies out in the street were the ones who were looking for trouble or the ones who had business to settle.

Malice wasn't either of those however, the only thing she wanted from the night was some peace and quite, away from all the stress of her particular line work. It paid the bills at least, but it wasn't any less of a burden when considering recent events.

It had been a lonely trip thus far, maybe she'd be lucky tonight, and she wouldn't run into anyone obnoxious or stupid, wishful thinking maybe but she could only hope to be left alone with her thoughts.

From a distance, she looked like any other night walking schmuck. []
>> No. 40608239
Eight walked through the night, waiting. Not many ponies would be out tonight, but maybe he would-- bingo. There, a mare walking alone. Looked fairly average. An easy mark. Now for the hard part. Eight Ounces wasn't much o a talker. Usually, someone else had lured the mark into an alley of some sort, where he had simply hit them over the head and rifled through their pockets. But now he was alone, and he would have to make do with what he had available. He pulled his worn coat tighter, and trotted up to the mare. He made sure to stay just out of her peripheral vision. He was large, after all, and had a lazy eye. Didn't want to scare her before he had to.
"'Lo. Nice n- night, no? Cool. Quiet."
First, talk to her. See if she was a good mark. He knew that much. "Like night. Think of home. Not much, but home. Talking much, sorry." He sidled a little closer. She was not unattractive, and Eight regretted that he might have to bruise her. Maybe a choke, or simply threaten her with a knife...
>> No. 40608269
>1d10000 = 6041
>> No. 40608274
File 140960400802.png - (143.65KB , 710x783 , 5f8f92643104b0cdf02d8e1a2e96b242.png )
The mare glanced in his direction with an emerald eye, cautious but curious to his presence. She then promptly turned to face the stranger with a white lipped scowl, her cherry red mane flowing with the motion, she didn't seem all to pleased to see him. "I guess it is..." She answered with distrust, acting as if she really didn't want to say what she actually thought.

She paused a moment to listen to his short inchorent ramblings, "Do you have a speech impediment? Look, I really just don't understand what you mean. I'm not really in the mood to chat with strangers anyway, so I'll be on my way if you don't mind."

She stands stoic and silent after she says that, as she waits for him to move along. He might take the time to notice she's pretty average in size, for a mare, much smaller than him at leas,t and she's wearing a dark saddle bag of sorts. It's harness strapped around her chest and pressing firmly into her pristine white coat.

Other than that, she's not wearing much, and he probably couldn't quiet make out her cutie mark in the dark.

Last edited at Mon, Sep 1st, 2014 13:41

>> No. 40608275
"Night like this, I left Detrot." He hadn't had a conversation in a while. It showed pretty clearly. "Still having trouble. But not much longer." With a gentle sound of metal on leather, the blade extended from his sleeve. "Sorry. Left. Now." Left would take them into a dark alley. Secluded. Hopefully she wouldn't see his face.
>> No. 40608277
File 140960453227.png - (113.19KB , 560x489 , Sparkplug.png )
"Who am I? Who are you, poni?"

The mangy mutt pointed at Watergate with a smile that was half lecherous, half creepy, all ugly and probably tipsy enough.

>Other time, other place...

Nothing was out of place on the street downtown. Not a sight, not a sound.
>> No. 40608278
File 140960478341.jpg - (6.84KB , 223x226 , how do I brush.jpg )
"Call me..."
The mare thinks for a few moments. She doesn't seem to really need that many moments, but nervousness will slow any pony down.
The gears click together.
"Deep throat?"
>Like I said, just wait 'till you hear her nickname.
"Deep throat, yeah. I'm, uh, what you'd call a 'face'."
>> No. 40608280
File 140960488511.png - (439.02KB , 682x719 , suave charmer Sparkplug.png )
"...Deep throat?"

The doggy grinned ear to ear.

"Face, yes, pretty face. I wanna test that name you have! How much for an hour?"
>> No. 40608282
File 140960490982.png - (172.01KB , 608x592 , Maliceface.png )
Malice didn't seem all too surprised with what had just been shown to her, like she expected it. Malice thought that the blade looked prettier in the street light. Regardless, she silently complied with his demand but with a potent look of disappointment masking her face before she turned down the dark alleyway to the left.
>> No. 40608296
File 140960543900.jpg - (8.47KB , 210x240 , that's not teeth.jpg )
"No, no, it's not like that! It's cause I'm deep undercover an' I provide a voice for stuff!"
She begins waving her hooves all over the place, as if providing a dance of seven hooficures would make it any clearer that she most definitely is not a prostitute of any kind.
"No blowjobs here! At all!"
>> No. 40608301
The little mare complied. Good. Eight would have hated to force her. "Money? Not all, but m-most. Never all." He would leave her enough to get home. "Live near here? Walk home?" He was starting I get uneasy. She was too calm. She looked like she knew what he wanted before he told her. Like she'd been here before. "Any Hurts?" He tapped his knife for emphasis. He could always use new Hurts. "Knife, gun, Boom? Give."
>> No. 40608308
File 140960566829.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
The dog scratched his head.

"Wow, you poni is pretty shit at being deep undercover if you say that to random guy in a bar."
>> No. 40608315
File 140960585401.png - (168.27KB , 900x722 , So this is a brush.png )
She ceases her panicked waving of hooves and flops into a chair.
"I'm new at this, okay?"
She rolls her eyes.
"Pardon me for not keepin' my cool when you're treatin' me like a callmare!"
>> No. 40608317
File 140960591690.png - (34.84KB , 159x160 , snkh snkh snkh.png )
"With a name like this?"
>> No. 40608327
File 140960620606.jpg - (7.22KB , 216x233 , NO.jpg )
"...Okay, I didn't think the name through. Guess old Equestrian history isn't common knowledge, huh?"
She wipes her brow.
"I want a job, I don't like sittin' at a desk all day, so I buy the coat an' the gun an' I go in here, right?"
>> No. 40608336
File 140960645857.png - (570.88KB , 1280x720 , poni look at it.png )
"This is a good establishment, poni. No trouble here. Why would you need a gun here?"
>> No. 40608338
File 140960649777.gif - (496.06KB , 448x306 , tumblr_kr0ni7Qm7y1qzbwkjo1_500.gif )
With a perfectly straight face, and an overall demeanor cooler than the arctic poles above Equestria... The mare reached into her saddle bag and then proceeded to drop neatly bundled credit chits, at least 5000 bits worth on the ground in the alleyway in between them.

She did nor said anything else.
>> No. 40608344
File 140960665479.png - (84.96KB , 900x591 , nudge nudge.png )
"Y'know. In case."
She glances around.
"You know exactly what kinda work I'm lookin' for," she whispers. "I read somethin' about an Electric Eye? Some kinda manual? I figure that's a good place to start from."
>> No. 40608362
File 140960741715.png - (217.65KB , 531x300 , seduction attempt.png )
The mangy mutt grinned.

"Sparkplug knows nothing about no Electric Eye."
>> No. 40608370
"...o...kay then, Sparkplug.
Do you know where I can find jobs around here? Something where I can learn to, ahem, operate complicated machinery? I've been thinking about getting into the more complicated jobs. The ones that pay really well, that kind of thing."
>> No. 40608392
File 140960817903.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
"I dunno what you talking about."
>> No. 40608396
File 140960828522.png - (170.94KB , 478x538 , wtf did you say to me you little.png )
She groans, rolling her eyes.
"Operating! I wanna get into Operating, okay?" she shouts under her breath. "I wanna learn more about how it works!"
>> No. 40608399
File 140960842696.png - (217.65KB , 531x300 , seduction attempt.png )
The mutt started to sweat a little.

"Buuut whaaaat pooooniiii wants tooo oooopeeeeeraaaaaaate?"
>> No. 40608404
File 140960852663.jpg - (7.22KB , 216x233 , NO.jpg )
"Are you really that thick?"
She raises an eyebrow.
"No, I don't think you are. You know what I'm talking about, right? The 'Night Job'?"
>> No. 40608409
File 140960867222.png - (34.84KB , 159x160 , snkh snkh snkh.png )
"If poni wants to work nights talk to manager. Sparkplug only drinks here. But poni would do good on pole, rawr."
>> No. 40608414
"Woah." That was a lot more money than he had expected. "You can get home?" He bent to pick up the money, and put in in the pocket of his coat. "Sorry. Wouldn't do if I didn't need to. With that, he would attempt to knock her out with a simple blow to the cluster of nerves near the base of her neck. No bruising, no after pain... It'd be like going to sleep.
>> No. 40608420
File 140960894556.png - (195.69KB , 500x374 , what.png )
"I'm about ready to slap you."
She puts her head in her hooves.
"Just...point me to the job board or wherever you get the jobs of the maybe-violent kind. And tell me where to find somepony whose brain isn't between his legs."
>> No. 40608427
File 140960910930.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
"Wow, Deepthroat poni is a bitch."

The dog snorted and took a gulp from his beer bottle.
>> No. 40608443
File 140960963050.jpg - (6.84KB , 223x226 , how do I brush.jpg )
"And you're a dumbass."
She stands up, and starts trotting around the club once more, dissatisfied with this line of conversation.
"...frickin' diamond dogs...sheesh..."
>> No. 40608447
File 140960973014.png - (277.51KB , 1000x1200 , midget!.png )
>> No. 40608451
File 140960994245.jpg - (7.22KB , 216x233 , NO.jpg )
"Self-centered ass!"
>> No. 40608457
File 140961010251.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
"Incompetent two-bit cunt!"
>> No. 40608466
File 140961032806.png - (168.27KB , 900x722 , So this is a brush.png )
"Dickbrained, booze-guzzling, one-track-mind pile of dog shit!"
At this point, she's walked ten or twenty feet away.
>> No. 40608470
File 140961056314.png - (277.51KB , 1000x1200 , midget!.png )
"Ugly, dumb, whorefaced, cockmunching shitstick slut!"
>> No. 40608482
File 140961088459.jpg - (6.50KB , 260x194 , wat.jpg )
"Drunken, dirt-dealin', lazy-ass cunt-sniffer! I bet you've got more STDs than you have brain cells!"
>> No. 40608484
File 140961092623.png - (901.02KB , 3316x3001 , Murderbird.png )
Krieg, who'd been watching this whole exchange go on from a few seats down at the bar, can't help but grin as she gets up. "Spark, quit fuckin' around with her."

She walks over to the mare and holds out a mechanical hand. She's a griffon with a more masculine build, a scarred face, and looks like she could hold her own in a brawl. "Name's Krieg."
>> No. 40608487
File 140961107778.png - (155.09KB , 828x1024 , classy stache.png )
"I'm Deep Throat."
She pauses, waiting for the snickering to die down.
"I'm guessing you think I'm a hooker too?" she asks, taking your talon in her diminutive hoof and shaking it. She's got the face for the job, certainly.
>> No. 40608488
File 140961111841.gif - (1.80MB , 460x241 , What+to+expect+from+Gandhi+in+Civ+5_017bbf_4829353.gif )
Malice uses her athletic skill to try and dodge the incoming sleeper neck chop and consecutively quick draw her Auto-pistol from her saddle bag in retaliation!

4 Ath

1d10 = 6
>> No. 40608494
The mare has successful moved away from her mugger and has him in the sights of her auto-pistol. "Don't move...! These things don't miss, so drop your blade, now!"
>> No. 40608495
File 140961127533.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
"After hearin' all that? Nah, you're just new to the game. That, and Spark's an ass," she says, lighting a cigarette. "Just remember, don't be so up-front about it. Never know when there's a Blue lurking around."
>> No. 40608500
File 140961139959.png - (116.03KB , 310x313 , charming ain't he.png )
"Pft, Sparkplug wouldn't want to! STDs, phuh! Sparkplug believes in safe, healthy sex and protects himself."
>> No. 40608513
"Gotcha." She straightens her coat. "Just gotta avoid numbskulls like him."
Once her coat's in proper order, she smiles at you.
"So," she says. "What kinds of work can I find here?"

Deep Throat snorts.
Is that a chuckle? Yep. She's chuckling at you.
>> No. 40608521
File 140961196873.jpg - (397.17KB , 2500x2100 , Armor.jpg )
"Really, anything you can think of. Escorting, knocking over stores, blowing shit up... But I'd recommend joining up with a crew, cause some of these jobs forget to mention the protection."
>> No. 40608522
File 140961202012.png - (277.51KB , 1000x1200 , midget!.png )
>The midget mutt growled and clambered on top of the table.
"What's so funny?"
>> No. 40608528
File 140961218665.jpg - (60.44KB , 500x500 , Hmm.jpg )
"Right, right. That's what I read. Of course, there isn't much I could read. I couldn't find the sources, ya know?"
She takes a seat, leaning lazily against the back of that poor little chair that saw better days five years ago.
"There was something about the Electric Eye, and a manual. But I can't seem to find it."

The stifled laughing intensifies.
"Sorry, just figured you for someone who wouldn't know where to put the condom."
>> No. 40608532
File 140961241010.jpg - (397.17KB , 2500x2100 , Armor.jpg )
"Eh, Electric Eye, they're good ponies. Writing a guidebook and all for Operators. But when it comes down to it, experience is the best teacher."
>> No. 40608548
File 140961298868.png - (190.79KB , 1894x1754 , Incoming fun.png )
"...Of course. Can't beat the experience. I don't suppose you have an opening?"
She smirks.
"I dunno what Sparkplug does, but I bet I'd be better than him at it."
>> No. 40608549
File 140961303182.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
The dog crossed his arms.

"Why? Because I'm a diamond dog? You think that Sparkplug is an uneducated shithead because of his species? Well fuck you, you racist!"
>> No. 40608552
File 140961325509.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg takes a drag form her cigarette and nods "Yeah, I tihnk we've got an opening. As for you being better than Spark? I dunno, little bastard's damn good at disappearing."
>> No. 40608555
File 140961334862.jpg - (7.22KB , 216x233 , NO.jpg )
"No, I think you're an uneducated shithead because you acted like one when I first met you!" shouts the mare with the apparent anger issues.

What got stuck up her butt? Oh, wait, she's called "Deep Throat". It must've been stuck in the other end!
>> No. 40608558
"Nice movement, very smooth, very fluid, potentially professional. Would explain money. Sweeper?" There's a glint in his eyes, now. Some intelligence that wasn't there before. "No, sweeper would have drawn immediately. Operator. Deception. Counter-crime."
Murder 1d10 = 9
>> No. 40608559
File 140961352336.png - (113.19KB , 560x489 , Sparkplug.png )
"Well excuuuuuuuuuuse me for getting some fun out of you!"

He fumed.

"Sparkplug has a damn degree in Equestrian culture."
>> No. 40608560
File 140961368381.png - (84.96KB , 900x591 , nudge nudge.png )
"I dunno. I can be pretty sneaky."
She continues smirking like a mare who knows everything.
"And I bet I notice more than he does."

"Like the fact that a degree in Equestrian Culture don't pay anything!" she shouts over her shoulder.
>> No. 40608562
File 140961382812.png - (217.65KB , 531x300 , seduction attempt.png )
"Sparkplug didn't get it for money! Sparkplug got it for his soul! Uneducated ignorant slut. Read a book sometimes!"
>> No. 40608565
File 140961391574.gif - (264.53KB , 500x500 , AE7lFhF.gif )
Before the mugger can make his move Malice shoots him in the right shoulder. "Don't be a fuckin' idiot!"

Murder 4
1d10 = 10
>> No. 40608569
Rolling to confirm
1d10 = 4
>> No. 40608570
As the Mare leveled the gun at him, he ducked and twisted, away from her front, and mover to pin the gun, as well as the limb holding it, behind her head.
Athletics 1d10 = 4 for movement, Murder 1d10 = 1 for kungfu.

Last edited at Mon, Sep 1st, 2014 16:33

>> No. 40608572
File 140961417246.png - (1.01MB , 4500x4821 , 1 S.png )
"I mean, we can always use another pony, especially someone else who's good at hiding. The rest of us... we're not real inconspicuous."
>> No. 40608577
File 140961433431.png - (439.02KB , 682x719 , suave charmer Sparkplug.png )
Sparkplug tapped his temple, currently using his Peeping Tim optical enhancement to count stray hairs on Deep Throat's tainttail base.
>> No. 40608579
File 140961435558.jpg - (60.44KB , 500x500 , Hmm.jpg )
"You kiddin'? I'm gonna write one!"
She chuckles, turning back to the griffon.
"Man, he's got easy buttons to push."

"Well, count me in, I guess! When's our next job?"
She offers a hoof to shake.
"I can't wait! Ooh, hang on. Is there anything I need to get first? I still got five hundred creds left to spend..."
>> No. 40608580
Rolling for Kungfu Crit Confirmation
1d10 = 2
>> No. 40608581
Ooh, looks like she's still got the V-card
1d400 = 238 hairs and counting...
>> No. 40608582
File 140961446457.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
"Can you write in the first place?"
>> No. 40608585
File 140961463637.jpg - (45.83KB , 640x448 , pic related.jpg )
"Yes I can! You're lookin' at--"
Amazingly, she's smart enough to shut her fucking creampiehole.
"...I can write, that's all ya gotta know."
>> No. 40608587
File 140961472626.jpg - (397.17KB , 2500x2100 , Armor.jpg )
Ignoring Spark, Krieg thinks for a second. "Not exactly sure on when, but we've got one coming up. I'd recommend either getting a duffel bag or some kind of mask. I can loan you my revolver if need be."
>> No. 40608590
File 140961484608.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
"What?! Krieg, you want to take her with us?"
>> No. 40608591
File 140961488129.jpg - (178.04KB , 479x572 , Imma human!.jpg )
"Already got myself a Mayfly, thanks."
She stands up, figuring that you're not one for hoofshakes. Makes sense, she thinks. You've got that metal claw, hoofshakes are probably a pain in the plot.
"Just,'m I gonna know when it's time to get goin'?"
>> No. 40608594
File 140961505981.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg nods. "Yeah, if only to see you two argue. That shit's funnier than daytime TV!"
"Well, I figured we'd show you the rest of the group, get you a burner phone until you can get a commlink, and that'd be that."
>> No. 40608605
File 140961547926.png - (113.19KB , 560x489 , Sparkplug.png )
Sparkplug sighed.

"I parked my van nearby."
>> No. 40608609
File 140961554735.jpg - (397.17KB , 2500x2100 , Armor.jpg )
"And I got my car about a block away."
>> No. 40608617
File 140961576008.jpg - (143.38KB , 1191x670 , super smily.jpg )
"Oh, right."
She shakes the annoyances of Sparkplug off of her face. Now her smile's unmarred.
"Well, let's go! Time to meet the crew!"
>> No. 40608626
File 140961600915.jpg - (84.57KB , 900x464 , __71_riviera_by_bartoleum-d2yvi7k.jpg )
Krieg smirks and nods. "Gimme a sec to pull around."

She steps out and a couple minutes later, there's a loud rumble from outside the club, almost as if there were a giant angry dog outside.
>> No. 40608640
File 140961640814.png - (137.16KB , 900x642 , HUGS.png )
"...Ooh. That is one big car, innit?"
She jogs up to the outside window, and presses her nose to the glass.

>> No. 40608649
File 140961658301.jpg - (84.57KB , 900x464 , __71_riviera_by_bartoleum-d2yvi7k.jpg )
Krieg smirks and leans over to open the passenger door for her. "Got it doing an Op a while back. Used to be a police cruiser, but I had a little fun in the garage with it."

>It's essentially this, minus the guns, with both a large iron eagle on the hood and an iron cross on each door painted on.
>> No. 40608654
File 140961674955.jpg - (60.44KB , 500x500 , Hmm.jpg )
She steps around through the doors of the club, grinning.
"That looks so cool, too. Like, it's weathered, but it's cool-weathered, right?"
>> No. 40608657
File 140961688027.png - (1.01MB , 4500x4821 , 1 S.png )
"Well, after I'd stripped the old paint off to repaint it, I kinda liked how it looked." she says.
>> No. 40608667
File 140961710616.jpg - (45.69KB , 500x656 , ooh.jpg )
"That's frickin' awesome!"
She hops into the passenger seat, still grinning like a madmare.
"So who we gonna meet next?"
>> No. 40608878
File 140962565660.jpg - (672.51KB , 1000x994 , theon ADWD.jpg )
Though Farasi was keeping his empty gaze in Sam’s general direction, the hug still came as a surprise. He sluggishly shifted and shuffled in the larger stallion’s grip on reflex, but after a few seconds he went limp again and just let it happen. The only motion that stirred him was the rattling, heavy breaths that racked his form, at least until Jet offered up some small consolation. The zebra’s ears twitched sharply at the familiar rationalizations. They had worked through his head on the way, but hearing them from someone else made them sound strange and foreign. Despite the fact that they ended on a question, for the longest time he felt no special hurry to respond, lingering in silence and staring off at nothing.

“I guess,” he agreed hesitantly, practically forcing the words out. He let that stand for a while before appending it with a noticeable crack in his voice. “It’s—it’s just... I just... I thought... She could’a...”

He cut himself off with a drawn out sigh that somehow managed to make him deflate even more. His forelegs rolled in their sockets and his hooves wound their way around Jet’s to link together. All the while, the deep, repulsive grimace on his face deepened and widened, his lips peeling back and flaring the deep gouge. His wide eyes finally shifted to stare at Jet, though he appeared to be more looking through him.

“Would it’ve killed her to—to say it to my face?” Farasi’s voice broken again on the last word, and he had to stop and break the brief stare to roughly shake himself. His gaze wandered to the floor. “I just... I loved her, Jet. And... and... I still love her. It’s... Dammit, dammit, I’m selfish. I’m being fuckin’ selfish here. ‘Course she’d go, it’s—it’s her... dad, y’know? She wants to see him again and—and be safe and... Why wait long enough to...?”

His good eye was wet again. A hoof wandered up there to dab at it; the motion to keep more tears at bay was the most energetic thing he’d done since he walked in. A faint shadow of his nervous, toothy grin tugged at his good side, but his eyes didn’t leave the floor and the good cheer injected into his voice was brittle and fake.

“... Fuck. You’re—you’re right. ‘Course you are. She’ll... D’ya think she’ll wait for me? How—however long it takes, d—d’ya think she’ll... you know?”
>> No. 40608889
File 140962604176.gif - (93.94KB , 501x412 , THATS ALL FOLKS .gif )
"If you two are meant to be together - away from all the horse-shit our jobs put us through. Then I'm damn sure she will Farasi. When all is said and done, go see her. You'll never know. Even if thing's don't pan out well... At least you'll get closure. But until then. You can rest easy knowing that she's safe." Sam held him tight patting him gently as the huge stallions voice held sorrow to mirror Farasi's own. Not at Eska leaving of course, but to see his friend so broken.

"I know it hurts bud... I know it hurts... But she was a kid. She didn't belong as an operator. She's got her whole life ahead of her, and when we all retire as millionaires and heads of "Sickle-Corp the totally legit business" you can bring her home, and make that whole life with you. Until then.... How does a drink sound?" Sam asked, pulling back a little and giving Farasi his signature smile, it was forced, but he was trying his best to cheer him up. Whatever he could do.
>> No. 40608924
File 140962744769.jpg - (60.20KB , 500x638 , off the.jpg )
While he couldn't be any more relaxed than he was, Farasi nodded slowly at Jet's reassurances, and the tautness of his face faded somewhat. He was by no means happy; his good eye was rimmed with red and was ready to break out again at the slightest provocation. He almost looked ready to protest, a quick intake of breath possibly preceding some worried contention, but Jet kept speaking and his jaw snapped tight, and his teeth ground together.

Eyes narrowing, there was a flicker of bitterness, his snout scrunching up distastefully. He didn't laugh at the offhand joke, but he probably wouldn't have anyway. Much like before, he paused for some time after his question, as if Farasi was an ancient computer on its last legs, struggling to process simple matters.

"She wasn't a kid," he said defensively, his lip curling. On him, the gesture exposed his teeth thanks to the ugly window the Wendigo left behind. He looked to be fixing to continue, but then he sighed, shook his head again, and the fight left him.

"... But... I think... a drink sounds good." Farasi pulled back as well, gradually winding himself out of Jet's grip and casting his doleful stare at the door. "I think-- I'd like something to-- to take my mind off'a... all this. Everything. You, uh... you lead the way. Find some place cheap."
>> No. 40608936
File 140962774827.gif - (509.52KB , 500x278 , 4qVXX6Y.gif )
"Isn't- A kid." Sam retorted as he released his friend, going down on all fours and lowering himself beside Farasi. "She's not gone. No one's gone until they're dead. She's just not here right now. This doesn't have to be goodbye Farasi. Just seeyah later." He looked up at hhim with a faint, soft smile.

"And I will do neither. I will carry you there, and I'm taking you someplace nice... And Foriegn."
>> No. 40608981
File 140962931884.png - (191.86KB , 444x600 , 138975446487.png )
"... Hey, you used past-tense, too! I thought you were, like, setting the fuckin' convention," Farasi shot back. With the sluggish motions that spun him around and now the dreary, slightly confrontational way of speaking, he might have been half drunk already. Despite his blustering, however, Sam clearly struck a chord in him. He met his soft smile with a wistful frown. "But-- y'know... I dunno. It's just... strange. Being without her. I got so used to her being around that... I don't know what to do."

Lost in his own reverie, it was only after he set about forcing himself off of the stool that he remembered Sam's question -- that seemed to be a recurring problem. He stared up at him confusedly, wobbling about on the floor and blinking owlishly. Where he might have laughed and cracked some horrid joke, Farasi just slowly shook his head and waved a dismissive hoof.

"I-- I can walk, though. I can still do that. Wherever you wanna go, Jet. But I can walk."
>> No. 40609066
File 140963335443.png - (454.14KB , 600x480 , 600px-Doomrider_NANANANANA.png )
"If you're sure..." Sam said, standing back to his full imposing height as he slipped off his jacket and wrapped it about the zebras shoulders, stepping to the door and guiding him to it. He knew that more than anything else right now, Farasi needed a friend, so he didn't react to the angry retorts. he didn't react to the foul mood he just kept him going, guiding him out.
>> No. 40609116
File 140963535797.gif - (1.84MB , 480x270 , 1408828875045.gif )
The zebra was now wearing two jackets. Or rather, one jacket and another that was wrapped around him like an imitation of a scarf. While this was passing strange, he didn't stop to focus on it, half-lidded eyes following Jet dully before his legs remembered to do the same. Contrary to his insistence, his stride was slightly wobbly, and each step was measured, as if he wasn't sure his legs could support his weight.

"'M sure," he unnecessarily muttered as they left Jet's place of work. He blinked blearily at the street outside, his eyes wandering up and down before returning to Jet. Farasi was still frowning, but he forced himself to look curious for courtesy's sake. "So, uh... where're we goin'?"
>> No. 40609253
File 140965185592.jpg - (34.75KB , 360x422 , chris-rock.jpg )
Once they got outside, Sam turned, and not taking no for an answer ducked his head under Farasi before going back to his full height, leaving the smaller stallion stuck across his back. He was gonna get a piggy back ride if he liked it or not.

"We are going to go to a sake bar near the elevator to upper canterlot. Because when you want to get really drunk but don't want shitty tasting booze. You have Sake in a high class Niponny bar."
>> No. 40609255
File 140966145746.jpg - (77.11KB , 800x450 , johnny-mnemonic.jpg )
"Woahwoah hey hold on--!" Farasi protested in vain with striking alacrity as the stallion worked his way underneath him. While he wasn't of inconsiderable height, Jet was significantly taller, leaving his hooves to hover some distance above the ground and twitch uselessly back and forth. This new arrangement took some getting used to, but now that he was up here he didn't seem as willing to protest. Flopping over like a zebra-shaped towel with a weary sigh, he accepted his new fate. His gaze was locked on nothing in particular, and the only sign that he was still listening was the slow swivel of his ear in Jet's vague direction.

"... Fuck it, Sa-ke it is," he said with an idle flick of the head, his tongue twisting on the unfamiliar word. Twisting his head around to look forwards, his bad side melted into it's natural vaguely sullen expression. He shifted once more, as if to get more comfortable, then abandoned the effort. "Let's... let's go, I guess. It'll, like... hell, I should'a gone to a bar first. Let's go."
>> No. 40609309
With her hoof behind her head, the mare was probably less of a problem. Which meant it was time to talk. "Didn't think you Operated. Mistake for me." He paused for a moment, thinking. "You are part of crew. Auto-pistol indicates little combat experience, or lack of focus on combat. Support role likely. You have crew?"
>> No. 40610377
File 140976523219.gif - (35.17KB , 500x305 , tumblr_m7uqb3QWfF1r7okzro1_500.gif )
The mare fumbled with her gun and wasn't able to get a shot off before she was grabbed. Now she struggles to pull away from the stranger with a bitter growl but finds it difficult with her leg in the position that it is currently in. "Hey...! Argh! Le-let me go, you creep! Ghah..."

She doesn't want to answer his question but it's obvious he knows far more than he's letting on, at least he's not your average mugger surely, not with skills like that. He was lucky she's a clutz from time to time! "Who's asking?" [] She inquired superciliously.

Last edited at Wed, Sep 3rd, 2014 10:28

>> No. 40610434
"Me. Just a pony. I work. Like you. But better at fighting." After shucking the gun out of the mare's hooves, he relaxed his grip slightly. Not completely, but enough for some comfort, at least.
"Just me."
>> No. 40610483
File 140977061739.gif - (179.55KB , 771x588 , tumblr_n2k6v3ZPhE1r6sk6wo1_r1_1280.gif )
The gun flung away from her hoof rather easily and she seemed a little peeved by that, "Yeah well maybe you are, this wasn't exactly a fair fight." She grumbled, "Hmph, you should know to be careful with the way your treating me. I take care of a lot of fighters, for all you may know, much stronger than you are, and with guns a lot bigger than I was carrying with me too."

"So yeah, I have a crew." The mare verified, seemingly not all too eager to be interrogated by the sound of venom in her voice.

Last edited at Wed, Sep 3rd, 2014 11:58

>> No. 40610509
"Sorry. This is wrong." Eight let the mare go, and stood back, still blocking the exit. "You are, medic? Healer? Doctor?" This is spoken with a different tone. Not sharp, not quizzing her, but a tone of honest curiosity. "Ever work with addicts?"
>> No. 40611145
File 140980241528.jpg - (26.15KB , 500x321 , 1162.jpg )
Sam simply nodded, walking along for a good long whiule, showing little to no struggle at carrying the smaller stallion across his back, things went on like this for a good while, and Farasi would have plenty of time to adjust himself more comfortably vertical across Sams back rather than horizontal to him, leaving him to rest his head in the surprisingly soft pillow that was Sams mane. The larger stallion stayed quiet throughout the walk, humming to himself as he had his AMind on but turned low so he could still hear Farasi should he speak.

Eventually, after nearly half an hour the pair arrived in upper mid-town, approaching a small, unassuming little bar, built from imported and well kempt wood the owner was clearly fairly wealthy, white banners with niponese writing fell from the roof, light spilling out through the closed paper door.

"Here we are..."
>> No. 40611327
File 140983144190.jpg - (192.03KB , 706x720 , 1404159642845.jpg )
Despite how inadvisable it might have been to remain perpendicular to Jet, Farasi didn't seem to mind for the length of the trip. He didn't mind the silence either, given that he didn't so much as mutter the whole way through. Caught up in his own thoughts, he stared off into space, dead to the world for what turned into a long walk. The time might not have even registered to him until Jet spoke, and he stirred to look up at the place.

"Oh," he said uselessly, his voice coming out a shade more gravelly than it usually did. Clearing his throat, his eyes were locked on the bar as he began to slide off of Jet like his bones had dissolved. "I, uh... I dunno what these're s'posed to look like. But it looks... good?"

His heart wasn't in the complement; it was possible anything would look good to him if there was a promise of alcohol. His hooves his the ground with a dull thud, and his bones rematerialized in time to prevent him from collapsing in a heap. Glancing between Jet and the bar, he lazily flicked his head in its direction, silently inviting him to go on in first.
>> No. 40611796
File 140988003209.jpg - (645.65KB , 1600x1200 , Blair-Face-852632.jpg )
Sam headed in through the door swiftly, making sure that Farasi stayed close and didnt wander off / collapse / shoot himself. Sliding the paper door open he stepped into the warm room, white tile flooring beneath them there where a few booth seats, but most people where just sitting along a long counter, not on stools but rather a single bench that they'd hop over the back of to sit down at. All where hollering and cheering watching Nipponese professional wrestling, some in Equestrian, others in Nipponese, about in equal measure.

Sam held his hoof up to the bar tender and wagged it twice to indicate two drinks as he moved to a booth, indicating for Farasi to sit down beside him.
>> No. 40611875
File 140988559696.jpg - (54.53KB , 512x376 , i'm overwhelmed with joy.jpg )
Farasi's head tilted sideways and scanned from left to right in mild curiosity, but his investment was minor. It was a cursory glance that would look casual if he wasn't so dead-eyed. Yesterday he might have ducked his head in a futile attempt to cover the deep, red trenches that wound over and around his eye, but he neglected that courtesy now. The noise was enough to make his ears half-flatten and his lips purse, but he marched after Jet without complaint.

He sat down in the offered seat, collapsing like a sack of potatoes. Leaning backwards, his eyes locked onto Jet, and apparently had nowhere else to be. Content to keep silent, he pursed his lips tighter into a forcefully neutral line and broke the brief staring session with a short shake of the head. His gaze made a circuit around the bar again, but it was clear that he wasn't really looking at any of it.
>> No. 40612489
File 140994831603.gif - (4.35MB , 525x394 , iGnxrqN.gif )
The Mare stretched her leg and rotated it out in front of herself, probably just checking to see if it was okay, it seemed like it was and so she dusted herself off. "Something akin to that..." She stated, checking her bag, possibly for anything missing.

After doing some digging, she reached for the credits she dropped and stuffed them back into her bag, too quickly for him to do anything about it. The mare then turned her attention back to the stranger's question, ignoring the pistol that was still on the ground a ways away from her hooves, "Yes. That's closer to a lot of the problems I've had to deal with. I'm what they call a 'street medic', I have medical training but I'm not a certified practitioner, at least not quite yet. I deal with people who can't afford traditional medical treatment."

Last edited at Fri, Sep 5th, 2014 13:20

>> No. 40612502
Eight stepped closer to the mare. "Can you help?" He reached into a pocket and pulled out an empty syringe, tinted slightly brown, the needle slightly sticky to the touch. "Running out. Taking less. Still hurts." At closed inspection, his pupils would appear slightly ragged and larger than the darkness of the alley could explain. Near the base of his foreleg there was an angry red mark, a single pinpoint. He took a deep breath, and recited the greeting he had memorized when he is young. "My name is Black Tar. I am a dangerous pony, but I can be YOUR dangerous pony." Then, a shake of his head, clearing his mind, and an afterthought:
"If you can help."
>> No. 40613275
File 141000599461.jpg - (48.05KB , 600x835 , 4d54a6c767johncena.jpg )
Only a few scant moments after the pair had sat down his eyes fell on what could be called a very pretty young Ibexian girl approaching the two of them, dressed in a simple white apron, the stand out feature of the brown furred creature was the gold inlaid into her horns, forming a beautiful pattern spiralling up them. However when she fell out the light it was near invisible, likely very little gold actually used, as little as possible, but still a beautiful gift all the same. She carried with her a pair of shot glasses on a tray, a clear bottle between them. Placing one in front of both the equines she smiled at the two, and blushed at Sam's returned sparkle sparkle sparkly grin.

"Enjoy!" She said, her accent making it obvious she'd never been to the homeland of the Ibexian's, she wasn't from there, she'd grown up here in Canterlot, Sam smiled brightly and nodded.

"Thank you, I will at least. Not too sure about Sadsy the stripey moper here, but after a few shots I'm sure he'll be feeling much better." He assured her as she poured the two of them a glass.

Once she'd walked away, Sam happily hefted up his, holding it up to clink his to Farasi's. "Bonzai!"

When the pair drank them down, Farasi found the taste to be rather like a remarkably, almost ridiculously dry white wine, coming down with a rather cool flavor. However unlike white wine he felt the kick of it right away, and as it sank into his stomach he could feel the bite of alcohol seeping into him right away.
>> No. 40613696
File 141002903877.gif - (456.66KB , 500x278 , tumblr_lw1eixoMCC1qhojr7o1_500.gif )
The mare openly cringed at his poor condition, "I think can help... But you're not going to like what I have in mind." She claims, taking a few steps back. "I know a recipe aimed at fighting serious addictions and it's very volatile because its designed to flush out your entire system, it's going to make you very sick, extremely sick..."

"Like I said, it will help you, but it can't be done here. I need to go get the proper ingredients from the place I work at, they're stashed in a secure medical locker along with all my other supplies." She explains, frowning and glancing towards the exit of the alleyway.
>> No. 40613761
Eight stepped out of the mare's path. Then he trotted over and came up alongside her. "Go. I-- follow." The barest hint of a smile appeared on his face.
"Mare alone, dark; looks like easy mark."
>> No. 40614131
File 141005172135.png - (344.87KB , 727x720 , coffeetomoko.png )
The mare probably could be called very pretty, but if Farasi's empty stare was any indication he wasn't of that opinion. The only thing he seemed to be focusing on was the bottle, the glasses and maybe the tray at a distant third. Everything else washed over him like so much white noise. He distantly heard her pleasant, chipper voice and brusquely nodded at her, though his eyes were trained on Sam again. It was clear to see he was unamused, his nostrils flaring, but he grit his teeth and stayed silent.

Farasi at least managed the courtesy to raise the glass and clink it, but the strange cheer garnered only a faint quirk of the eyebrow before he drained the glass. The taste was certainly new, and not entirely unpleasant as it went down, but after a second or two his eyes briefly widened like he'd felt something brush his hoof under the table. His lips pursed as he brought the glass away, eyelids fluttering in mild shock. It took him a second to compose himself, roughly clearing his throat and shifting in his seat as he played with the glass.

"... Not bad," he allowed. The novelty of the experience was difficult to keep hold of, and within the second he was already eyeing up the bottle. "Yeah. That's... something, alright."

The bite was clearly something he was fixing to become acquainted with, as he grabbed the neck of the bottle, brought up the glass and poured himself another drink without so much as a 'by-your-leave.' He then proceeded to drain that with the same swiftness. He might have started hogging the bottle a little.
>> No. 40614422
File 141008804923.jpg - (51.18KB , 468x409 , 468px-Robert_Lutece (1).jpg )
Sam watched his friend, sighing softly as he started on the drink right away after he had his first shot. Taking it off him but in no way stopping him from having that second shot he poured himself one and downed it with equal furvor, placing the bottle between them.

"Just this once.... Just this once I'm going to get completely and utterly smashed. And everything is on me tonight. You can crash with me."
>> No. 40614516
File 141010193820.jpg - (318.69KB , 1920x1080 , cyberpunk-anarchy_00243049.jpg )
Tentatively, the mare walks over to pick up her dropped weapon, she promptly crams it back into her saddle pack, along with her other belongings. She then starts leading out of the shady alleyway, poking her head about to see if there were any more ponies on the street. Fortunately, it was pretty quite this late into the evening.

Malice would then lead him to her base of operations, where she kept her supplies. It was a humble place, out of the way from the prying eyes of the public and more importantly law enforcement.
>> No. 40614532
As they trotted through the streets, Eight kept a respectful distance from the mare. Close enough to reach her in seconds, but far enough that nobody would really notice the following unless they were looking for it.
It was the first thing he'd said since he'd left the alley.
>> No. 40614554
File 141010706516.png - (901.02KB , 3316x3001 , Murderbird.png )
"We're gonna see who's at home." she says, pulling out into the road and gunning the engine, making the car roar like some kind of hellish beast.
The unmistakable roar of an engine signals Krieg's arrival back at the safehouse. "Honey, I'm ho~ome!" she calls out, stepping through the door.
>> No. 40614635
File 141011382181.png - (190.79KB , 1894x1754 , Incoming fun.png )
A blue unicorn follows the griffon in, glancing around with the wide eyes of a newbie Operator.
"This is the place?" she asks, still grinning excitedly. "I can't wait to meet everypony..."
>> No. 40615046
File 141014465310.jpg - (40.93KB , 684x1100 , it's raining.jpg )
He waited with all the patience of an indignant snake in the grass as Jet took the bottle, his baleful stare focused on the bottle. The intensity was unimpeded by what he'd already consumed. His grip on the glass was so tight that if he had digits he might have smashed the thing. The brief moment it took Jet to pour some for himself may have seemed like hours for Farasi. At last, the sake was freed, and he reached out and poured some into the thimble with a striking amount of concentration. It looked like he wasn't even listening to Jet, staring thoughtfully at the full glass as he brought the bottle back to a standing position, and he deigned not to respond in favour of downing it.

"Thanks," Farasi said after his mouth was freed. He pursed his lips again, pausing. His good eye glistened in the light, and he sniffed loudly. "I... thanks. I... I dunno, man. I mean, uh... thanks for payin', I mean. But, uh... I'd hate to impose, y'know? Wouldn't wanna... y'know. Y'don't have to lemme stay the night or nothin'."

He seemed quite confident that Jet did know what he was afraid he was going to do, as he set immediately set about pouring shot number four. The effort of talking even that much must have been draining, as his hooves were slightly more sluggish this time.
>> No. 40615512
Oh, good! Her crew was home. Something about the voice sounded a bit off, not quite Equine... Eight poked his head through the door to OH DEAR SWEET CEKESTIA THAT'S A GRYPHON! Eight dove backwards, pulling Malice to the ground. "Don't move. Gryphon. Possible mercenary. Assassin? Are you high-Val target?"
>> No. 40615515
File 141019719351.png - (901.02KB , 3316x3001 , Murderbird.png )
Krieg's face breaks out in a wide grin as she undoes the snap holding her WaspSting in its holster, but not drawing the gun. "Mal, you bringing home strays again?" She posed an intimidating figure, with her muscular build, numerous scars, and mechanical limb. She takes another couple steps forward, her mechanical talons making a click as they touched the floor.
>> No. 40615517
File 141019727363.png - (113.19KB , 560x489 , Sparkplug.png )
Sparkplug drove over a moment later in his generic black van and hopped out, straightening himself to his unintimidating shortness.

Then he noticed the mountain of a stallion with Malice and shook his head.

"Sparkplug isn't paid enough for this shit."

He then pulled out a flamethrower.
>> No. 40616223
Sam shook his head immediately after Farasi speaking, rarely being one to interrupt others. "Nope. Farasi you're staying with me tonight and I'll be hearing nothing to the contrary thank you very much. Now do you want anything to eat?"

Sam asked as he worked to take the bottle from Farasi, pouring himself a shot before giving into the likely begging and staring zebra by returning the bottle to his grip.
>> No. 40616248
File 141026416661.jpg - (64.26KB , 700x575 , 1405208164961.jpg )
"... No thanks. I'm, uh... not hungry."

There was a momentary lull in his drinking, during which Farasi returned to staring at Jet with dull surprise doing a poor job of lighting up his face. The shot glass wobbled in his hoof, his grip tightening as he brought it up to his face and drank it. He took his time for this one, letting the liquor sit in his mouth for a bit before slowly swallowing it. For once, he wasn't staring at the bottle, but rather Jet himself, and he neglected to pour another glass. Instead, he worked his jaw as if in deep thought, his eyes wandering about nervously.

"If-- I mean... I 'preciate it, really, just, uh... y'know. I-- I just don't wanna... take up space, I guess," he spoke haltingly, shifting about in his seat. The pause ended as he began pouring another glass with an unsteady hoof. "And, like... shit. I should pro'lly tell the others. Fucking Frost'll wanna know everything, 'cause she's all ab-- uh, no offense. The, uh, the point is, you don't have to look after me or nothing."

He attempted a nervous little faux-reassuring smile that turned out to be much more faux than reassuring. His bad side was far from flattered by it, and within a few seconds he abandoned it and went back to drinking.
>> No. 40616329
File 141028203568.png - (170.94KB , 478x538 , wtf did you say to me you little.png )
"...uh, is this the part where we have to shoot somepony?"
The mare draws her duster coat open, and from within, she retrieves a Mayfly.
Her hoof shakes as she places the gun at low ready, just like the guy who sold it to her showed her.
"I'm not sure I wanna shoot somepony right now. I mean, don't I gotta learn some more stuff before I start shootin' ponies?"

She puts on a war mask, her scowl directed at the hunk of metal in her hoof, her eyes squinting into the dark at whatever may come to her.
>> No. 40616335
File 141028220170.png - (34.84KB , 159x160 , snkh snkh snkh.png )
Sparkplug grinned maniacally.

"Silly poni. This is mostly about killing somepony a lot. Or burning. Aim for the center of mass and always make sure to double tap."
>> No. 40616357
File 141028298409.png - (195.69KB , 500x374 , what.png )
"R-right. Gotcha. Double tap."
She flicks the safety away, watching her life turn toward the dark alley of crime and dive in.
"So who's this colt again? Curious minds wanna know."
>> No. 40616400
"Ma'am, your call. You wanna run, pass me a gun. I can slow them down at least. Gryphon problematic, Dog not a threat at this range unless welding caster, not thrower, third pony seems inexperienced, no serious threat." Eight looked to the gryphon and steeled himself. "Black Tar. Enforcer. Identify. Purpose?"
>> No. 40616428
File 141028528044.png - (901.02KB , 3316x3001 , Murderbird.png )
Krieg chuckles as she approaches him, a gleam in her eye. "Name's Krieg. I live here, and you're currently on top of my friend." Her claw goes to the handle of her revolver.
>> No. 40616431
File 141028540361.png - (198.62KB , 473x459 , laughing gas is no funny matter.png )
"No serious threat?"
She blinks.
"Who said I wasn't serious?"

Deep steps up alongside you, still shaking lightly as she points her own gun in a meaningful direction.
>> No. 40616462
File 141028646719.png - (143.65KB , 710x783 , 5f8f92643104b0cdf02d8e1a2e96b242.png )
Malice picks herself up and nonchalantly dusts herself off, much like she did in the alleyway, except this time she was actually on the ground. So maybe there was actual dust this time or maybe she just thinks the stranger dirty!

Regardless, she's brought him here, and after turning to face the stranger she announces, "The Griffon is correct, we're friends or at least as close as an equivalent to a friend a person can have in this morally bankrupt city."

She then turns to face Krieg and the others, which include some strange mare she doesn't know. Maybe the dog hired her to do some depraved and revolting act of 'intebreeding' with him, uhg. Malice preferred not to think of something so grotesque.

For a moment, she just seemed to pause to shake her head. "So anyway, lower your weapons, would you kindly? This is my new 'friend' and I see you've brought one of your own. I met him while on an evening walk and he needs some medicine. He's particularly easy to startle and skilled with a knife, so don't provoke him, at least not until I have him fixed up. I promised I would help him."

Last edited at Tue, Sep 9th, 2014 11:16

>> No. 40616467
File 141028669236.jpg - (45.69KB , 500x656 , ooh.jpg )
...Oh, phew! An' here I thought I was gonna start with the murder!"
The new pony slips her gun into her coat with a relaxed sigh, wiping the sweat away from her horn.
She holds out a hoof, smiling in a manner too friendly for an experienced operator.
"I'm Deep Throat, nice to meet you!"
...Yep, Sparky paid for this one.
>> No. 40616482
File 141028712494.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg shrugs and takes her claw off her revolver. "If he's with you, then he's alright. I won't start shit if he doesn't."
>> No. 40616488
File 141028727261.gif - (69.88KB , 500x290 , tumblr_mkzopsnFC91r34zhyo6_r1_500.gif )
Malice wears the guise of a straight face as she reaches into her bag to pull out a tissue. "It's pleasure for some, I'm sure. Salutations, everyone else calls me Malice and you should too." She shakes her hoof using the tissue to grab and shake it daintily instead of actually grabbing her hoof.

"Please don't, I don't like working overtime."

Last edited at Tue, Sep 9th, 2014 11:28

>> No. 40616502
File 141028773982.png - (155.09KB , 828x1024 , classy stache.png )
"Okay! So, there's Krieg, Malice, Sparkplug...who else is here? I gotta meet the rest of the team, after all."
Oh sweet Celestia she's staying?
"So whaddaya do?" she asks, apparently oblivious to your abject horror. "Do you do the fighting? Or maybe the hacking? You look like you'd do the hacking stuff."
>> No. 40616510
"She is medic. Back-alley doctor. Recruited, maybe due to Murderbird, Dog, others get hurt. Now is back-alley medic." Eight will look at Deep, like he can see into her mind. "You. Not a fighter. Hooves too shakey for firearms specialist, offered hoof-shake, not close combat ex. Likely another support role. Not medic. Job?"
>> No. 40616516
File 141028863322.gif - (456.66KB , 500x278 , tumblr_lw1eixoMCC1qhojr7o1_500.gif )
Malice looks annoyed that the stranger spoke up about her before she could do so herself, "Thank you but I can speak for myself." With that said, she lets out a deep sigh, "Not so much, I'm the only pony here who has any medical experience. So that makes me the pony who fixes you up when you get hurt. I'm also very skilled in handling things of the exploding nature and by that, I mean bombs."

After letting them know what she does she pulls her tissue away and brings it up to Deep Throat's face, wiping it clean and polishing away the sweat at the horn. "Don't look so nervous." She tells her, "I'm not too fond of nervous ponies with guns, they cause problems, problems I usually have to take care of."

Last edited at Tue, Sep 9th, 2014 11:55

>> No. 40616521
File 141028885592.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg lights a cigarette and listens to all this. "Murderbird? Never been called that before. Hmm... I like it!"
>> No. 40616523
File 141028894147.png - (113.19KB , 560x489 , Sparkplug.png )
"Kinda fits."

Sparkplug scratched his butt and walked inside, then pointed at Eight Ounces.

"So who the fuck are you?"
>> No. 40616535
File 141028927725.png - (84.96KB , 900x591 , nudge nudge.png )
"...I'm a sneaky pony," she replies, raising an eyebrow.
"You're a clever one."

She blinks a couple of times at the use of a tissue on her face.
Not the best reaction for a prostitute to have, honestly. She'd have much worse things on her face.
"So you do the stitches?" she asks, continuing the friendly smile.
>> No. 40616549
File 141028996695.jpg - (8.94KB , 215x185 , anime-gas-mask-girl-manga-526652.jpg )
Malice has already discovered that this mare is not in fact, a prostitute, just by the way she speaks and stands. Deep is much to naive. Prostitutes in her experience, are much more worldly in knowledge and in how they approach other ponies.

Malice pinches Deep's nose with the tissue, "Yes, I do the stitches and hopefully not on you, although I doubt I will be so lucky. I've been shot several times myself."
>> No. 40616556
File 141029024419.png - (194.10KB , 900x900 , why not.png )
"...I hobe so doo," she says, scrunching up her nose in reaction to that pinch.
A quick step backward, and she's out of your grip.
"So, who's that other guy? The one you said you'd promised to fix up?" she says, nodding toward Eight. "He seems like he pays a lotta attention."
>> No. 40616570
File 141029092371.png - (10.01KB , 250x210 , Grestininvestigator.png )
Malice makes a shrugging motion at Deep, "I didn't bother to find out, not that it matters now. He sounds foreign maybe... All I did was offer him my help with his illness after we met and he explained his situation. In return he promised he'd watch my back. Not much more to it than that, he followed me all the way here and he hasn't tried anything funny. I'll probably find out more in due time."
>> No. 40616577
"Name is Eight Ounces. Called Black Tar in work. Enforcer. Ran with DeTrot gangbangers. They had my drugs. I had muscle." Eight stopped and closed his eyes. He whispered something under his breath. It sounded like "Rot Kartoffeln." Then he turned to Malice.
"Heal. NOW. Been too long since last dose. Shakes start soon. Get worse. Harder then."
>> No. 40616581
File 141029150767.jpg - (143.38KB , 1191x670 , super smily.jpg )
"Nice to meet you, Black Tar--"
The new mare blinks a couple of times.
"Wait, aren't you supposed to hide your real name? In case somepony's captured or something?"
She tilts her head.
"Are you that new to this? Wow. And I thought I was a newb!"
>> No. 40616588
File 141029173941.gif - (599.15KB , 502x282 , LF979y3_jpg.gif )
Malice chuckles at the mares response, finding it difficult to take Eight Ounces state of urgency seriously.
>> No. 40616589
File 141029180627.png - (113.19KB , 560x489 , Sparkplug.png )
"You called yourself Deep Throat. You don't get to call others newbs."

>Sparkplug lit a cigarette off his flamethrower.
>> No. 40616594
"But he just sat there and said his real name! Isn't that, like, worse than trying to 1v5 in PotG?"
She rolls her eyes.
"I mean, good grief, the guy's ackin' so cray cray."
>> No. 40616599
File 141029206955.png - (570.88KB , 1280x720 , poni look at it.png )
"Look at him, whoreponi. Big, bulky, said he did drugs with DeTrots, mentioned shakes. Sparkplug considers it a huge success he doesn't poo on the rug."
>> No. 40616604
File 141029225776.png - (195.69KB , 500x374 , what.png )
"Well, it's still gonna get him into trouble!
Also, I'm not a whoreponi."
>> No. 40616783
Eight reached into the pocket of his coat and pulled out a small case. Opening it up, he selected a syringe, one of the remaining three, half full of a thick, amber syrupy substance, and, uncapping it in a swift motion, drove it into his left foreleg. He let out a long, quiet sigh. "Hate this stuff. Makes me slower, weaker. But body needs it. Otherwise, can't do ANYTHING." He turned to Malice.
"So. Cure?"
>> No. 40616791
File 141030186391.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
"Whoreponi in denial and drug addict. Sparkplug congratulates fine additions to the team."
>> No. 40616938
File 141031433425.jpg - (105.98KB , 452x599 , 452px-Niggermander.jpg )
"Farasi, looking after people is what I do. You know how I have that whole honor schtick? Yeah well that extends to loyalty as well, I will never *ever* abandon a friend when they need me." Sam said firmly, looking him in the eye with a firm set to his jaw but a comforting, kind look in his eye.
>> No. 40616940
File 141031438232.jpg - (6.84KB , 223x226 , how do I brush.jpg )
"Again, not a whoreponi," says the mare, though she's barely paying attention to you at this point.
Her gaze is locked upon the vial which Eight just unloaded into his veins.
"...How'd you get so dependent?" she asks.
>> No. 40616988
File 141031707357.png - (56.36KB , 613x451 , zebra8.png )
"Of... course," he said contemplatively, pursing his lips into a thin line. The cleft lip prevented it from closing, somewhat ruining the effect, along with the rather dreary, cow-like stare with which he observed the area immediately above Jet. He shifted about awkwardly in his seat. "I dunno, Jet. I dunno. It'd... I feel like I need to get some air, y'know? Like... clear my head a bit."

"And-- and there's, uh... there's another thing," Farasi seemed to have discovered a colony of ants under his seat, as he kept squirming in his seat, his eyes flicking this way and that. His shoulders hunched up almost defensively, but his tongue was loose enough. "I, uh... for a while now, see, I, uh... I've been having a... a bit of trouble sleepin', is all. Just a bit. So, like... Fuck. I'll pro'lly keep you up half the night, y'know?"
>> No. 40617039
File 141032027242.jpg - (31.34KB , 310x310 , 7gcs.jpg )
Sam snickered softly at that last bit, smirking at him.

"Farasi I didn't say we'd be sharing a bed~" He teased, tossing back a shot of his own. "How about we go for a walk then, wehn we get back to my place I've a punching bag, I think that'd help you out a good bit."
>> No. 40617205
File 141035037375.jpg - (47.81KB , 402x564 , LNwN5u9.jpg )
Though he turned a rather impressive shade of scarlet, sputtering and jolting in a quickly abandoned attempt to backpedal, he managed to get himself together quickly enough to look faintly doubtful. His eyebrow arched in a way that didn't quite jell with his crooked half-smile.

"... A punching bag?" Farasi repeated, sounding just as incredulous as he looked. His smile faded somewhat as he began to seriously work the thought over, a faintly confused frown gradually forming. "Is that... that's a joke, right? 'Cause-- I get it, 'cause I pro'lly couldn't hit, like, anything. Eska didn't like that sorta thing."

"I, uh... guess I could... follow you home, though. I mean... yeah. Yeah, sure," he moved on after the briefest pause to despondently stare into his glass, which he then set about filling again. "Ain't like I got anywhere else to go."
>> No. 40617228
File 141035964563.jpg - (79.58KB , 400x635 , 387c96fb858ea08755276016bc62be2d.jpg )
"Believe me, it makes a very satisfying thud when you hit it, great way of relieving stress regardless of whether or not you like violence. I don't *like* hurting people Farasi it's just part of what I do. Doesn't mean I don't go to the punching bag when I'm in a bad mood and smash it about until I've got all the frustration out."

Sam let him fill the glass and down it once more before speaking, the stallion now baring only the faintest of smiles as he spoke, an ever-present one aimed to comfort even if there was none of Sam's usual ever present cheer behind it.

"We'll finish this bottle and then head back there, sound like a plan?"
>> No. 40617699
File 141040268200.png - (35.05KB , 362x344 , 11111111112.png )
He hesitated for a moment, grimacing as if in pain. He fiddled with the glass for the umpteenth time, his hunched shoulders rolling in a faint shrug. Farasi's attention drifted to the dancing glass, more specifically the faint residue inside.

"I'm kinda likin' it here," he said, a bit too dully for someone who was liking it so much. "It's... nice, this stuff. Real nice. I-- I can see why you like it. Still booze, in a way. Just, like... a different type. Same general thing, different... Nevermind. Maybe I oughta, like... compare'm. Yeah."

"... Nah, nah. I'm-- you're pro'lly miserable over there. We can leave whenever," he shook his head as if to clear it, waggling a dismissive hoof. He sounded a shade more tired, like he had just been rudely awakened from a quick nap, but he at least was conscious enough to glance in Jet's general direction.
>> No. 40617925
File 141043142568.gif - (949.01KB , 275x275 , aCzLck5.gif )
"Right now you're just stewing, got no time fo rthat. Worst thing you can do right now. Come on. Take the bottle." Sam said, standing up and trotting over to the counter, paying for the two of the and trotting back over. Giving Farasi a gentle smile.

"... Wanna ride on my back again~?"
>> No. 40617933
File 141043560734.gif - (0.98MB , 640x960 , iU1SwYe.gif )
"I... think I'll be fine," Farasi turned vaguely pinkish again, but he spoke steadily enough as he shook his head. Grabbing the bottle by the neck, he gave it a little swirl, listening to the unfortunately quiet sound it made, and forced himself out of his seat. "Yeah. 'M sure I can make it... wherever."

He kept shaking his head, his attention wandering, but he was able to stand on his own three legs, even if he bobbed back and forth a bit. Farasi lazily flicked his head towards the exit.

"Let's go."
>> No. 40617935
File 141043574007.jpg - (31.34KB , 310x310 , 7gcs.jpg )
"Are you suuuure?" Sam teased, trying to cheer him up with a pleasant smirk and a slight wag of his tail as he walked out alongside Farasi, leaning down to be closer to the shorter stallions level as the two departed from the bar into the cold night air once more.
>> No. 40617938
File 141043636082.gif - (0.97MB , 500x332 , 80gbharddrive.gif )
Staring dolefully back at Jet, he didn't seem to appreciate being relieved of the burden of looking up at him so much, and just shook his head. Then he jolted, realized what the correct response was supposed to be, and amended himself with a sharp nod.

"'M sure," Farasi said with some of his usual awkward haste. His mouth remained in a dull, absent frown. "Gotta walk somewhere on my own hooves. Y'can't carry me everywhere."
>> No. 40617941
"All right... Hey... Tell me about her."

Sam said, switching the topic suddenly as he turned to look at Farasi. A look of genuine curiousity on his face.

"I never... She and I never got along well, so I never understood what it is that you like about her but... Tell me about her, what makes her special? What're you looking forward too when you two see each other again."
>> No. 40617984
File 141044611233.gif - (176.57KB , 500x300 , skellyton.gif )
"Uh, ew!" Malice cried, obviously she didn't appreciate him doing that in front of her, and in front everyone else even, very rude and indecent she thought.

"Yes well, lets move right along then, we don't need you shooting up in front of people. You know...?" She gets behind Eight and pushes him along, eager to get this over with.

It doesn't take very long for them to reach her 'infirmary', just a few turns and they reach what looks to be more akin to a laboratory than anything else. There are beakers of all sizes sitting around the room, bottles of painkillers and who knows what else. Heaters, mattresses, raw material, like plastics and cloth scraps strewn about, a bottle of fluffy swabs. It was disorganized as hell but for the most part everything looked fairly well taken care of at least.

Malice sits Eight down in a cold plastic chair, the room was frigid. After sitting him down, she rushed off to poke around in the cabinets, looking for anything relevant to her work. Meanwhile, his nostrils would pick up the distinct smells of heavy chemical usage and even a hint of sulfur and gun powder, maybe some oil even.

Eventually she finished digging through the cabinet and put down a couple of different bottles of medicine on a counter top with some big beakers and a stainless steel sink. Most of the bottles had the labels ripped off and were instead marked with different symbols of varying color.

With her back towards him still she asked him for a bit of patience as she then pulled up what looked to be a mortar and pestle. Carefully she started dropping pills into the mortar and pouring water into one of the medium sized beakers already set up over a heater from the various bottles at her disposal.
>> No. 40618074
File 141045926159.jpg - (60.44KB , 500x500 , Hmm.jpg )
Meanwhile, just outside the infirmary, Deep Throat nods to Krieg.

"Hey, I've been meanin' to ask--what kinda jobs am I gonna be doin'? Anything coming up soon? Is there, like, a training regimen I gotta get through?"
She taps her chin, humming to herself.
"Or am I goin' right into the deep end?"
>> No. 40618078
File 141045971306.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg lights a cigarette and takes a drag. "Well, our next job seems easy enough. Break into a BetterBuy, steal some audio equipment and whatever else we can shove in the bags, and hightail it outta there."
>> No. 40618080
File 141045977823.png - (194.10KB , 900x900 , why not.png )
"Ooh. So it's just stealin' stuff?"
She shrugs.
"Hey, I could use more cash...I guess I'll just be haulin' butt with a load of speakers?"
>> No. 40618083
File 141045995722.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
"Yep, pretty much."
She nods.
"Well, I'm willing to bet we're gonna have to deal with security and employees. Getting around and disabling the alarms and shit would be nice."
>> No. 40618086
File 141046017196.jpg - (5.32KB , 259x194 , plushie plushie plush.jpg )
"Well, I'm good at sneaky. An' I can talk circles around most ponies!"
She grins.
"I figure I might be able to distract some ponies."
>> No. 40618093
File 141046043657.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg smirks.
"Yeah, that'll definitely help. I'm betting we're gonna try and go non-lethal on this one, but we'll have to figure it out. I mean, if they're shooting at me, I'll kill 'em. If not, then I'll knock 'em out."
>> No. 40618096
File 141046056678.jpg - (143.38KB , 1191x670 , super smily.jpg )
"Here's hopin' I can help with that last bit!"
She holds out a hoof.
"Thanks for lettin' me come along, Krieg. You're real friendly for somepony who, y'know, beats stuff up for a living."
>> No. 40618101
File 141046079129.png - (1.01MB , 4500x4821 , 1 S.png )
Krieg shakes it with her mechanical claw.
"Thanks. I may be the crew's resident murderbird, but that's just on the job, y'know."
>> No. 40618103
File 141046096818.png - (108.68KB , 900x814 , WOOT.png )
"Heh, yeah."
She shakes your claw a little more than really necessary.
After a moment, she glances about, sitting on a convenient chair.
"...So, you guys, like, built this place, or...?"
>> No. 40618130
"Cold. Why? More expensive." Eight said, shivering slightly. His body didn't really register much of the cold, the coat he wore just kept the really bad scars from showing. His nerves were practically fried after all these years. "Sorry about doping there. Withdrawal symptoms, far less appealing. Sometimes violent. Wished to avoid. Should have warned you."
A long pause.
"If any consolation, not really high. Would take several full shots to really take me. Just took edge off withdrawals."
>> No. 40618141
File 141046361928.png - (1.01MB , 4500x4821 , 1 S.png )
She sirks and takes another drag.
"This place? Nah, just another place we've acquired from Operating..
>> No. 40618144
File 141046390622.jpg - (45.83KB , 640x448 , pic related.jpg )
"Wow. Pretty big job, was it?"
Her tummy voices its protest at the idea of not carrying out this conversation over lunch.
"...does this place have a kitchen?"
>> No. 40618321
File 141048229314.jpg - (43.98KB , 640x420 , justkillmenow.jpg )
The sudden question was enough to raise his eyebrows, to say the least. 'Surprised' might have been an understatement; Farasi looked a bit like Jet had just struck him, his eyelids fluttering in silence. When he composed himself, he grimaced and bit his lip tightly, turning to face forward. By some subconscious instinct, he had started trotting on Jet's left, and his more expressive side nearly crumpled in on itself.

"You scared her," he nonsensically began. The three-legged stride was unnatural, but he endured it to take a swig from the nearly empty bottle. "She-- it's why she, uh-- she didn't like you. I... That was all she said when I asked her. But I think I get why. She-- she had a good... a good heart, y'know? And the-- the idea of, like, killing someone? She couldn't stand it. So you were so casual 'bout it and... Nevermind."

"And she-- It's kinda hard to put into words, but, uh... she got me. Believed in me, y'know? She trusted me and... and I let her down sometimes, sure, but she never... she didn't hold it against me. I let her down a lot, but she kept givin' me more chances... And-- and she was... real, uh... independent, I guess? Like-- If she had somethin' to say she'd say it, and-- and she was smart-- really smart, and she was always so-- confident, that's it. And... I think I liked damn near everything 'bout her. She was just..."

He cut his rambling love letter short with a long sigh, his posture wilting as if the wind went right out of him. With one of his forelegs already occupied clutching the bottle for dear life, he couldn't stop his good eye from misting up quite a bit. Not that he particularly cared; he softly shook his head, as if forcing himself out of a pleasant dream, and stared at the ground tiredly.
>> No. 40618458
Sam softly wrapped a hoof about his friends shoulders, pausing their walk to give him a gentle hug. "Well by the sounds fo it, someone that special isn't gonna just give up on you. As you said she's got a good heart Farasi. And in our business we often don't have a choice about killing people, she'll do better away from here and when we're done and rich I bet she'll be waiting for you with open arms and a smile you can wake up too every morning."
>> No. 40618720
File 141052303173.png - (44.08KB , 584x474 , zebra5.png )
Farasi momentarily stiffened in the hug, but after a second in Jet's grip he loosened up again, leaning against the larger stallion. He nodded slowly, a faint smile forcing its way up his good side, though his not-so good side retained its grim, blank stare. His hoof darted up to dab at his eye.

"Y'make it sound so perfect," he said with an airy thoughtfulness. He seemed to have lost himself in thought. "But you're right. She's better off... anywhere but here. She'll be fine and happy and safe and... and maybe I'll see her again."

"Guess I just gotta survive long enough. Then... we'll see. Maybe she'll-- she'll be happy to see me and-- and it'll really be that perfect. Maybe."
>> No. 40619465
File 141056808906.gif - (755.69KB , 700x394 , fallout1.gif )
Malice remained silent about the temperature of the room, she probably just didn't care enough to bother to answer why it was so cold. She also neglected to say anything in response to his apology. She simply continued with her work, extremely focused with cutting and mashing up pills, and heating the contents into a chemical soup of sorts within the beaker.

It took some time, but with the last few stirs and a few drips of some sort of dark syrup, the concoction was ready for consumption.

Malice waved over the home-brew cure with her hoof, getting a whiff of the final product, it made her cringe. She then carefully funneled the contents of the beaker into an empty whiskey bottle, there quite were a few of them lying around her workspace. Malice didn't seem like much of a drinker though.

The bottle of whatever it was Malice made was then given to Eight to drink. She also moved over a bucket and grabbed a medical mask for herself. "Bottoms up! You're going to want to down that as fast as possible." The smell emitting from the bottle was extremely bitter, probably just about how it would taste and it was very strong.
>> No. 40619521
"Gah!" Eight jerked back a bit from the brew. "Smells like home." He took the bottle from Malice and drained it in two swift gulps. Then, nothing. "Not so bad. Little bitter. Sweet aftertaste. Almost--"
And then he threw up. Hard. He at least managed to get to the bucket first, moving almost faster than a pony should be able to. The noise was incredible, probably audible from the next building over.
He raised his head, breathing hard. "Ow." And back down, heaving and retching. At first, the bile seemed normal, from a medical standpoint. Then, a few movements in, it became black, almost tarlike. It didn't rush out; Eight almost had to force the vile-smelling ooze from his throat. It landed in the bucket in a splash of bile and chyme; a lump the size of a gryphon's clenched talon. The bucket was almost full with a mix of black, dull grey-green, and deep red by the time Eight was through. He lay on the floor, his breathing barely audible, but there. No movement other than the occasional spasm.
>> No. 40619526
File 141057143038.png - (75.81KB , 607x765 , ew cheese.png )
Sparkplug opened himself a beer bottle and turned to Deep Throat and Krieg. He opened his mouth to say something, but then from the other room...






"What the actual fuck."
>> No. 40619533
File 141057208811.gif - (475.94KB , 500x233 , 137967925601.gif )
"Well Farasi you've got my word. By my honor I will make sure, I will do everything in my power, up to and beyond dying to protect you just as I have for our whole crew, and ensure that you live to see her again." Sam murmured, no levity in his voice now, just hard seriousness as his grip around Farasi's shoulder tightened. "That sound good to you?" He said, face coming back to a smile.

"Now, she'll be back one day. Now you never have to fear her dying on a mission again. It's just a matter of time till she's back in your arms. So buck up and gimme a hug."
>> No. 40619539
File 141057262690.png - (198.62KB , 473x459 , laughing gas is no funny matter.png )
"...What the fluff was that?"
She blinks a couple of times, staring at the infirmary door.

"That wasn't Eight, was it? Holy cow pies. Is he throwin' up his stomach?
I mean, that'd make it easier to get it out, but why?"
>> No. 40619551
Eight, still lying on the floor, finally spoke. His voice was ragged, but carried just far enough to be heard in the neighboring room:
"can't feel organs."

Last edited at Fri, Sep 12th, 2014 19:01

>> No. 40619556
File 141057460233.png - (61.14KB , 292x356 , 1403230475134.png )
"... Fuck, man, you really mean it," Farasi said, and he tittered in the first show of humour that night. It was a soft, scratchy sound, and the smile on his face was tentative and bisected, but the absurdity of it all -- or maybe the booze -- livened him up. "You-- you ain't gonna die for me, man. Don't be stupid. That'd be stupid. Don't-- don't-- ah, fuck it, c'mere."

Strictly speaking, 'here' was a space occupied by the both of them already, but regardless of the terminology Farasi brought a spare foreleg up and had a go at wrapping it around Jet. Though he was long and lanky, he couldn't quite get it over the full way, and his grip was hardly as steady as it could have been. In his absent-mindedness, he dropped the bottle to bring that foreleg down on the ground, and didn't seem to hear it fall or care that much.

"I ain't worth dying for. I sure wa-- weren't enough to keep her around. But that's selfish, ain't it? Real selfish. She's better off and-- and all that. And happy. And safe. And... yeah. Some day. I'll be fine, and she'll be fine, and you'll be fine, and... it'll all work out. Pro'lly. Just... I don't like waiting."
>> No. 40619568
File 141057529630.jpg - (106.48KB , 500x581 , hqMTjD1.jpg )
"That's right, it *will." Sam promised, wrapping both arms around Farasi as he gave him a tight squeeze, and his usual bright charming smile, leaning down and giving him a friendly nuzzle before slowly releasing his grip of him.

"So stop moping huh~? Let's go back to my place, put on a bad movie, eat some popcorn and deplete my liquor cabinet. That sound like a good night?" Sam asked, his usual infectious cheer slowly re-entering the stallions voice as he smiled down at his friend.
>> No. 40619570
File 141057531780.gif - (4.35MB , 525x394 , iGnxrqN.gif )
Malice assures them from behind the door, "Everything's fine in here! Don't worry about it, just a little temporary sickness!

"All part of the plan." She says as she looks down at Eight lying there on the ground, stunned by her brew. "You should be better in a few hours. Until then, keep the bucket close by. It's going to be your best friend."

Last edited at Fri, Sep 12th, 2014 19:30

>> No. 40619604
File 141057733191.gif - (497.37KB , 500x215 , awkward.gif )
'Stop moping' was a command that was quite difficult for him to follow. As he extricated himself from Jet, he sighed, his attention wandering off in some other direction. He seemed to be genuinely thinking it over. Or, more likely, thinking of something completely different, given his current difficulties with retaining one train of thought. Eventually Farasi nodded, his faintly lost look solidifying somewhat.

"Sure, sure. That, uh... sounds great. I-- I could use somethin' to watch. And something else to drink. And... all of that," Farasi managed almost nervously, his hoof waggling in a gesture with no readily identifiable meaning. "Yeah. You-- you lead the way. I, uh... dunno where you live. Could pro'lly find out. There's a lotta stuff you can do with a computer. Lotta stuff she... Nevermind."

This time, his hoof's gesture was definitely identifiable; an awkward flick usually reserved for people trying to coax their pets in a certain direction, although the general principle still applied here. Sort of.
>> No. 40619654
Sam nodded, and from there, set off in general silence, trotting along placidly with Farasi at his side, leading him through the streets of canterlot on a rather long walk, back the way they'd came really for Sam lived fairly close to the diner he worked in.
>> No. 40619707
>> No. 40619724
File 141058245134.gif - (1.00MB , 245x160 , replaying a video game for the hundredth time.gif )
Farasi was in no great hurry to break this silence. He followed along ploddingly, occasionally stumbling or letting his focus wander to some inane sight they passed on the way. If he noticed that Sam lived so close to his place of work, he didn't see a need to comment on this, although it was entirely possible the strange noise of fascination he made at a neon sign was, in fact, also related to this. Regardless, though his path wasn't entirely straight, he followed Jet dutifully.
>> No. 40619745
File 141058530296.jpg - (76.67KB , 450x281 , 786043-bigthumbnail.jpg )
Eventually they arrived at an apartment building, not exactly in upper midcanterlot, in fact where Sam lived was bordering on the dangerous part of town, only a twenty minute walk from the den of villiany that was club lucius.

He used a key he pulled from his wallet to let the two of them into the building, ascending up a staircase covered in old torn carpet, Sam led Farasi to his room.

When they finally reached the abode, on the fourth floor it lay, Sam unlocked the door with the ID card attached to his building key. He stepped aside to let Farasi enter before stepping in himself.

"Sorry about the mess, I'm packing at the moment. Moving in with Frost soon." Sam said, giving an awkward chuckle as he closed the door behind him. Mess wasn't quite the right word, but it was indeed obvious Sam was on his way out of this building, a stack of boxes laid up against one wall of hhis large living room, the kitchen was attached here, a counter at the back seperating it with his couch pushed up against it to face his tv. Besides the boxes, the room was impecabbly tidy, after their work had been done and he'd finally gotten to return here it was obvious Sam had spent some time giving his home a good and proper clean.

Off to the side of the living room was his own tiny gym, a bar mounted to the ceiling for chin ups, a punching bag, an exercise mat, and a scarred, sliced wooden mannequin.
>> No. 40619752
File 141058676843.png - (25.31KB , 301x396 , mess.png )
When he bumbled into the room, he blinked in mild surprise at the state of it. This mild surprise turned into a small bit of dawning horror at the revelation that this was apparently a mess, and he may have experienced a slight moment of existential horror relating to his treatment of the broom closets he preferred to hole up in. His head swivelled on his neck like a camera, slowing panning over the room and taking it in as if it was some immensely interesting sight. He nodded shortly.

"It's nice," Farasi said stiffly, but something else was on his mind. He fidgeted for a second, then glanced back at Jet curiously. "So you're... moving in with Frost, eh? Frrrost."

"... Personally, I wouldn't, but-- you know, guns and pointing and all the shouting kinda-- it changes how y'see ponies, y'know? I dunno. Your choice, I guess."
>> No. 40619762
That snarked on the man a bit and he raised an eyebrow, letting a moment pass before he spoke.. "You mean like when Eska pushed a gun against my forehead and told me to give her a good reason not to shoot me?" He shook his head. "Sorry, sorry, that was low of me..."
>> No. 40619794
File 141059078354.jpg - (247.66KB , 800x1058 , 1403307316635.jpg )
While he'd been previously observing with a casual air, almost instantly Farasi rounded to stare at Jet in open shock. He looked like he'd just struck him across the face, his wide eyes contrasting sharply with the agape jaw that slowly twisted into a deep scowl. He might have not even heard his apology, though he certainly had the time to process it. He just stared at Jet for some time before a seething sigh forced its way through his gritted teeth.

"That was a bad day," Farasi admitted almost calmly, but the iron in his voice was unmistakeable. "She... I don't know what happened there, y'know. I don't. She was-- she was in a state, I was in a state, you'd just fuckin' exploded a guy-- it was a mess. She... lashed out."

"Frost did, too. Did I-- did I ever tell you this? About that-- that time when she threatened to shoot Eska right in the fucking face? Fuckin'-- forget how much you scared her, Frost was-- she is terrifying! Gives me the fuckin'-- the way she looks at me, like I'm a tool or some shit--!"

He brought a hoof to the bridge of his snout all of a sudden and began grinding his teeth again to silence himself. If he regretted the outburst, he didn't have enough grace to apologize.
>> No. 40619798
File 141059122408.jpg - (295.71KB , 640x604 , HD_HospitalBurningDC31Nov18_preview.jpg )
Sam remained silent, looking genuinely remorseful for what he'd just said before Farasi told him Frost pushed a gun at him and Eska. Then it was made obvious he'd never heard of that. No one had ever thought to mention that little incident to the man. His mouth fell agape just as Farasi's had. Eyes going wide.

"She did what?!" The stallion barked, reminding Farasi for a moment that the man he was with was far, far larger than, he, far more muscular, for more willing to kill and *far* more dangerous. But the anger wasn't directed at him and after a few seconds he raised a hoof to his brow and pinched his eyes, letting out a sigh that in truth was far closer to a growl. "For fucks sakes that fucking woman..." He grunted before forcing himself to relax, sagging slightly as his head drooped, good mood ruined.

"That... That's a matter for another day, your girlfriend doesn't like me, and mine is a crazy bitch. But they're not here right now... And we're friends right? Let's... Let's just make this a guys night."
>> No. 40619806
File 141059458324.gif - (808.59KB , 245x161 , screaming internally.gif )
Farasi jolted at Jet's outburst, and it belatedly occurred to him that Frost was certainly in no hurry to tell him, Eska wouldn't have told him and he had just plain not done it. For the first time, a flash of fear showed on his face, his posture straightening up at the revelation that he had just upset the metaphorical lion. His own self-righteous indignation took a backseat to self preservation, and he cringed with a nervous grimace.

"... Sure. Yeah, sure," he said, nodding his head with an almost exaggerated forcefulness. He squirmed and shifted in place. "Yeah. I mean, uh... well. Uh. She-- it was-- uh... No one died? I mean, she could've. But, uh... the situation was, uh, handled. Kinda. And, um, that was a while ago, and, uh... well, with Eska, uh, y'know, it, uh..."

"Let's-- let's just... You need another drink? I think I need another drink."
>> No. 40619843
"Yeah... Yeah I need another drink." Sam muttered, wandering to the liquor cabinet past Farasi and pulling out a new bottle of Saki, placing it on the counter he took off his jacket and folded it, before tossing it onto the back of the mannequin off to the side. Grabbing the pair of them glasses he poured proper sized portions rather than shots. Walking back to Farasi and passing him one before mumbling.

"Sorry for yelling, I can see I spooked you a little. I'm not mad at you... " He moved back towards the kitchen. "Take a look what I have to watch, all on the TV's hard drive, remotes on the couch. I'll make us something to eat."
>> No. 40620072
File 141063586149.png - (64.14KB , 1017x598 , Jacket.png )
Krieg rolls her eyes and smirks. "We need him *alive*, Mal!"
>> No. 40620198
File 141064546537.gif - (47.26KB , 770x770 , not that kind of clopping.gif )
Deep turns pointedly away from the door to the infirmary, and claps her hooves together.

"Who wants to go eat? We should totally go find a place to eat that isn't here."
>> No. 40620267
"oh celestia don't leave me here"
"every moment is new agony"

Last edited at Sat, Sep 13th, 2014 16:56

>> No. 40620369
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Farasi accepted the glass with a jittery hoof, nodding gratefully. His nervousness was gradually melting away in the absence of immediate danger, and he might have been regretting even allowing it to show in the first place based off his faintly guilty look. Lingering in place, his eyes followed Jet's return to the kitchen in rapt attention, but at his direction he began to slowly bumble over to the couch. The sake took precedence over anything else, of course, and he took a long drink before grabbing the remote and flicking on the TV.

"Th-- thanks, Jet. I, uh... I 'preciate it," he called over to the kitchen, half-paying attention to the television. He allowed himself a seat on the couch. "It-- uh-- I-- I can, uh, un'erstand getting mad. It was... well. It was somethin' alright. Luna, that whole, like, fuckin'... couple weeks were a mess."

"... But, uh... nevermind. Not somethin' to think 'bout now. Right. Yeah. Uh. Other stuff."
>> No. 40620395
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Flipping on the TV he found a menu called up, the list going: TV, Aux, Hard Drive, Netbits. The stallion in the back left him to browse as he got to work, bringing out an arcana asssortment of cooking tools and ingredients as he started to make them something to eat. Clicking on the hard drive button he found a wide selection of crappy eastern kung fu action films, along with a selection of romantic comedies, usually trashy ones, a few crime dramas, and one or two horror movies.
>> No. 40620405
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Farasi's eyes glazed over a bit as he was reading the selection, especially when he got to the romantic comedies. If there was one thing that was definitely off the list, it was that, and he suddenly felt the incredible need to drain a bit more of the glass. His ears twitched at the sound of Jet hard at work, and the effort of puzzling out which would be sufficiently mind-numbing was significant enough that he felt the need to start talking again.

"What're you makin' back there?" He asked relatively casually, though the awkwardness of the last topic lingered.
>> No. 40621642
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"Ramen in Miso soup with some veggie garnish. Just something quick and easy." Sam said, the way he spoke made it obvious that some cheer was beginning to return to Sam as he worked, the stallions hooves moving with practiced ease as he pulled out a knife and diced a celery stalk. Cooking, like bladesmanship was something he practiced until it was not a matter of thinking, just simply knowing, all the movements ingrained into muscle memory. Doing things like that, the relentless practice and improvement of a skill. That was where Sam was happy.
>> No. 40621688
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His eyebrows raised in the faint flicker of recognition and polite surprise typically observed in idle conversations near water coolers, although the gesture was pointless with Jet in another room. Farasi made a vague 'mm' sound under his breath, though it, too, was pointless given the distance. The first word, if none of the others, was very, very familiar to him. He had to take another sip to keep the taste from rising back into his mouth, even after all these years.

"... Sounds good," he said airily, his tongue loosening up somewhat. He sounded just a bit distracted. "I used to pack that stuff away in college, y'know. Like, that, uh, generic ramen that costs less'n a hundred creds. Nice stuff. Think it gave me -- what was it? Uh... sodium poisoning once. Or was that the flavour packets...? Still ate it, though."
>> No. 40621712
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Sam chuckled softly at that, looking down over the counter to where Farasi sat on the couch pressed up to it. "I'm guessing you've never had real Ramen then have you? That microwave stuff really cant compare to the real thing, I promise you that." He said, grinning as he tossed all the vegetables into a pot he currently had going, pouring in a ready made Miso soup that began cooking as he readied some onion as well.
>> No. 40621725
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"'Real' ramen? I thought it was real enough when I ate it," he commented strangely philosophically, staring without really seeing at the TV screen. His brow furrowed and he shook his head, dismissing the matter. Except not really, as he revisited part of it as he reclined against the couch's armrest. "But, uh, I'm sure yours is better. Like, way better. Yeah. The microwave stuff pro'lly had, like... styrofoam in it. Does that technically make it not ramen? 'Cause, like... it was only partly noodle. If you stick a bunch of crap in something, when does it become... not that thing?"

Judging by the way he sniffed the air and the faint rumbling of his stomach, this may just have been his hunger letting him ramble on it. He shook his head again, reclining backwards and staring blankly up at the ceiling.
>> No. 40621729
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"Personally I'd never call something real if it came ready-made, those shitty boxed sushis, ramen in a cup, it's not real cos it's just mass produced. No real effort went into it." Sam said, smiling down at his friend before turning away to cut open a bag of still straight noodles and pour them into the pot.
>> No. 40621745
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"Huh. Yeah. That makes sense. Effort, th-- that's what makes a thing real," Farasi agreed with a short nod. For a moment that seemed to be the end of it, but as he continued to marvel at the ceiling his face scrunched up again in thought. "Yet, like, is that it? Does that mean that if, uh, a more efficient way of, like, making stuff, that reduces effort-- that makes the product less real?"

"D'ya think-- d'ya think the-- the guy who came up with microwave ramen, d'ya think he... he thought he was making something unreal? Or, like, did he just see it as an easier way?" Farasi wondered aloud, a hoof propping up his good cheek and smushing it, which rather killed any pseudo-intellectual air he might have been accumulating.
>> No. 40621751
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Sam shrugged a little, moving the pot about and using a ladle to stir what lay within, staring down into it as if searching the depths of the broth for the meaning of life, a distant look in those unmarred eyes... How was it that Sam, the one who ran headlong into battle and used a bloody sword was one of the few in their crew who'd yet to lose a limb or half his face.

"I think... I think he was out to make a profit. But I also think he wanted to make something tasty and available for the masses who couldn't afford the good stuff."
>> No. 40621765
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He made a vague noise in the back of his throat, a dull hum that was neither wholly agreeing or in opposition. It was a bit like the sound of a whirring computer fan, and like that sound it was most likely merely an indicator of processing. He leaned further into his hoof, silent for some time.

"Do you think it matters?" He asked suddenly, though his relaxed posture didn't shift. "Intention, I mean. Like... after it's done, does what you wanted to do mean anything?"
>> No. 40621771
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"I think it does..." Sam said quietly, "The road to riches is paved with bad intentions, but the road to ruin is paved with good." He said cryptically, pulling on old phrases. "A man can do a lot of good, purely to assure his standing in the world, he may have created a better world overall but that wasn't his goal. He did good but for the wrong reasons. Just as a man could have done awful things thinking he was in the right. The intentions don't change the outcome, or how we should really think about it that much... But it's something to ponder. What did despots, maniacs and killers use to let them sleep at night?"
>> No. 40621790
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Farasi noisily shifted about in place, straightening his posture, relaxing it, shuffling from side to side and generally finding himself incapable of sitting still. His hoof detached from his face, flopping onto the armrest, and he leaned into it even further as he continued to stare off into space. Working his jaw like a goat chewing on a can, it was almost possible to see his addled brain work over the concept.

"What about... what about when... someone knows it's wrong?" He asked quietly. "When you know what you're doing is-- is wrong, but... you got a reason for it. Y'know that-- that when you're done, it'll... all turn out for the best? What then?"
>> No. 40622994
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"Doing a wrong to accomplish a right...? That's where things get tricky, I guess it comes down to Utilitarian Ethics, will the wrong you commit. Such as killing someone, provide more happiness to a greater number of people than them living would have?" Sam mused, picking up a pair of bowls and filling both using the ladle he'd been stirring with, their dinner now ready, grabbing two sets of chopstick, he laid them across the bowls, carrying them out around the counter to sit down beside Farasi, offering him his.
>> No. 40623015
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"Yeah. Yeah, somethin' like that," Farasi nodded, almost sounding relieved that the concept wasn't completely foreign to Jet. It even had a professional-sounding name. He was still staring straight ahead, failing to notice Jet's approach as he squirmed. "'Cept, uh... maybe not always a greater number, 'xactly."

He may have been willing to continue this unpleasant train of thought, but he was startled off the tracks when Jet sat down and Farasi bumbled about in place before managing to get a certain grip on the bow