Death Game Season 2-- Staging: Entrance Hall

The Man in Red

The Host
Level 1
LV
0
 
Joined
Jul 30, 2020
Messages
82
Essence
€357
Coin
₡1,500
Tokens
0
Arriving via teleporter after whatever means were utilized to get them there, new arrivals and competitors will emerge into the gleaming hall of the facility. Set up and shaped like the lavish and luxurious entrance hall of a vintage and classic theater or exceptionally fancy hotel. There are no doors, only the banks of teleporters used to grant entrance and exit. Beyond them, there is a large front desk staffed by numerous employees and helpful staff who can assist with answering questions and filling out any last-minute paperwork or setting...affairs in order.

Leading out of the entrance hall one can find the elevators which lead to the higher levels of the facility, and the other portions of the pre-game staging area.
 

Klarion

Witchery
Staff member
Level 2
LV
0
 
Joined
Jul 31, 2018
Messages
28
Awards
2
Essence
€6,326
Coin
₡1,500
Tokens
5
World
Nos'Talgia
Profile
Click Here
”DANG IT!”

A blinding flash and a sparkling whirl of light later, and suddenly a skinny teenager appeared on the far end of the entrance hall, chest heaving and fingers curved into claws as he staggered across the teleportation platform, clearly having been through it. Instead of facing the main hall, Klarion glared furiously at some random point on the inside of the teleportation chamber, blinking hard to regain the use of his eyeballs.

Ugh! What had Snipe called that stuff he’d injected him with— parabolas? Well, whatever it was, it sucked! At least the teleportation seemed to have cleared off the worst of the drug’s numbing effect, though a hint of nausea now churned in his gut. Magical teleportation was much easier on the senses, that was for sure.

Dimly, Klarion became aware of the awkward, echoing silence that seemed to follow his arrival. Breathing hard through his nose, the kid slowly craned his head around, squinting as he struggled to make sense of his new surroundings. Why was everything still so stupidly bright? Seriously, it was like standing on the surface of a freakin’ star!

The lobby appeared unassuming enough, at least. It looked sort of like an opera house, really, with a soft velvet rug leading off from the teleporters and spilling over glistening white marble floors. Tilting his head back as he cautiously edged off from the platform, Klarion sneered up at the detailed depictions of cherubim and nymphs scattered all across the wide, sparsely-illuminated ceiling, the whole of it richly painted in gold leaf and luxurious gemstone hues.

What was that saying? Living in the labs of luxury? This certainly looked like it.

“Sir?”

Klarion startled, his black dress shoes scuffing loudly against the polished tile floor. He cringed as the sharp squeak echoed down the corridor, bouncing off the various other examples of Baroque interior design tastefully littered about the space. Looking down, Klarion realized that he’d actually veered sharply away from the rug leading down the main corridor, instead creeping along the furthest edge of the wall like a house spider hoping to escape a slipper-wielding arachnophobe.

Turning to look behind him, Klarion was mildly irritated to find an attendant in uniform standing there, clipboard in hand and giving off the most patiently helpful vibes. Their long blonde hair was tied back in a smart braid, a pair of thick black spectacles perched precariously on the end of a round button nose, and their light brown skin was about as sallow and washed-out as his own— the sort of color you’d expect to see on a corpse, not a living, breathing person. They were also painfully short, the top of their head just barely reaching the bottom of his chin, something the witch boy became dreadfully aware of when the well-dressed attendant bounced up onto the tips of their toes to look him in the eye.

Glancing down at their breast pocket, he noted a little glitter-lined tag, the name ‘Coda’ scrawled across it in cheerful bubble letters, along with a helpful set of pronouns. Eugch. The glitter was too much. It was enough cutesy nonsense to make any witch boy sick.

“You’re Klarion the Witch Boy, aren’t you?” Coda asked, reaching up to primly adjust her glasses. Her bright yellow eyes flicked over him from head to foot, a slight grin brimming on her lips. “Congratulations, you’re the first contestant to arrive at our handsome facility! I’m Coda, it’s lovely to meet you. Would you like a quick welcome tour? Maybe a rundown of what to expect from the main event?”

Naturally, Klarion didn’t say anything in response to that. The girl’s chipper voice did things to his head. Instead, he just staaaared at her… and began to slowly sneak away, keeping his back firmly glued to the wall as he went. Like hell was he going to expose any weaknesses to these… these… weirdos!

“Um? Are we starting the tour?” asked Coda, doggedly following along behind him, strait-laced even when pursuing an irritable witch boy. “Please watch your step, sir, there’s a— oh, okay, you’ve got it…”

Glaring as he continued to edge away, carefully side-stepping around a few decorative potted plants and cushioned, velvet-lined benches, Klarion managed to reach the end of the corridor leading to another, much longer hallway. A narrow-eyed, hunted look on his face, he cast a quick glance over the rest of the main entrance that he’d been ignoring up until this point, and noted a main desk with a whole crowd of additional attendants standing there, all of them also staring at him.

He looked back at Coda, trying to think of what to say. Something biting, for sure. An insult that would cut her right down to the bone! Except, all that came out was—

“Noooo thank youuuu,” Klarion said slowly, his pupils darting around her face, his mouth oddly enunciating the words like they were completely foreign to him. “Excuse me.”

As he turned and skulked off in a random direction, Klarion’s face assumed a pinched expression, like he’d just bit into something sour. ’Thank you? Thank you?!’ What was he thinking?

Meanwhile, Coda merely watched him go, a mildly bemused expression on her face. “Maybe I should’ve told him about the elevators…”
 

Aquarius

The Calamitous Constellation
Level 1
LV
0
 
Joined
Nov 4, 2021
Messages
33
Essence
€3,862
Coin
₡3,500
Tokens
0
World
Erde Nona
Profile
Click Here
An awkward walk to the nearest teleporter landed him and the stranger right in the middle of a large hall. It was bright and gaudy and far too flashy. Humility devoid, the only recourse seemed to be whenever he would run into other contestants. He wanted to see their fury, their power. Though he held scars of his own, none he’d encountered walked away unscathed.

Yet.

“This is the staging hall.” The stranger machine spoke. “Here you’ll finish your registration and learn about what is happening within the event. Please, take your time around here. Perhaps even meet with other contestants. It seems one has arrived before you.“

Aquarius’ eyes were locked on the surrounding walls and decorations that showed decadence without substance. He forced his gaze away from it before it irritated him to the point of no return. As his eyes trailed he noticed the whole room staring at one individual who seemed to be feigning inconspicuousness while making himself the center of attention. He could not have been more than a teenager.

The rotund robot spoke again, ”Coda, how is welcoming the new contestant going?”

A short blond woman with pale skin looked over and smiled towards the robot and made her way over to them after the weird boy had begun to slink away.

“Seems shy so far!“ She extended a hand towards Aquarius. “Welcome! I was just beginning to start a tour if yo-“

”Am I expected to face off against children here?”
Aquarius interrupted in frustration.

“I expected to have seen someone formidable at the very least.“.
 

Klarion

Witchery
Staff member
Level 2
LV
0
 
Joined
Jul 31, 2018
Messages
28
Awards
2
Essence
€6,326
Coin
₡1,500
Tokens
5
World
Nos'Talgia
Profile
Click Here
As Aquarius was busy engaging in conversation with the event staff, Klarion was occupied by other things. Namely, attempting to pry open the doors of an elevator with his bare hands.

Now, Klarion didn’t know it was an elevator. When he looked at those closed doors, all he could see were two panels of thick metal that he could not for the life of him figure out how to open. Where was the lock? The door handle? The hinges?! Indeed, after several minutes of fruitlessly pressing his body against them in the hopes that they might budge, he resorted to jamming his fingers between the small gap that he could see, attempting to prise the doors open with all his strength.

Hissing quietly from exertion, Klarion strained until his poor little witch boy fingers were tired and sore. His sharp teeth bared in a grimace, he let out a high-pitched growl of frustration. “Ugh! Why. Isn’t. This. Working?!”

The padding of heavy footsteps came from further down the hallway, back in the direction of the entrance hall. Klarion paused, nose twitching the tiniest bit, as the sound of several murmuring voices trickled along the corridor to meet his ears.

“I expected to have seen someone formidable at the very least.”

Hmph. That must have been one of the other contestants. In which case: how dare they.

As Klarion glared in the general direction of the offending comment, a trio of persons turned the corner of the hallway, clearly intent on observing him. One was the short blonde-haired girl from before; he definitely wasn’t happy to see her. Another, a robot guy or something wearing a bowler hat, Klarion didn’t ask and didn’t care. The third person, though…

“YOU!” Klarion shouted, still engaged in trying to pull the elevator doors apart. He let go with one hand, just long enough to jab one of his pointy black fingernails at the figure dressed in an eerily familiar, monk-like garb. “You’re one of those Arcadian automobiles, aren’t you? One of the older than dirt types. Help me get these doors open, I know you’ve got the strength for it!”

“It’s just an elevator!” Coda called to him, exasperated. “If you’d only just—”

She paused as Aquarius lifted one arm, effectively silencing her. The murderous machine glided past, every footstep that brought him closer to the witch boy echoing against the polished tile, adding another layer of menace to his approach.

In mere seconds, the automaton had drawn close enough for Klarion to get a good whiff of him. He stank of ruin, and some kind of metal. Maybe iron, if Klarion’s nose was to be believed. Iron always smelled so cold.

“You know of Arcadia’s glorious past, child?” the automaton inquired in a low, slithery drone, looming above him in a way that was aaaaalmost threatening, but not quite.

Stepping away from the elevator, Klarion snorted, crossing his arms over his chest. He lifted his chin to look the automaton in the eye, petulant. “I wouldn’t say glorious. It’s been about the same for a couple thousand years; same old boring mortals building kingdoms only to tear them down a couple hundred years later. But yeah, I do. Now, if you wouldn’t mind…” He flapped a hand at the sealed elevator doors.

For a long moment, Aquarius was silent. His metallic visage turned, considering the situation with an analytical, detached stare… and then he just… reached out, pressing one of the buttons mounted on a glittering metal plaque beside the door.

The elevator doors opened with a cheerful ding. Klarion’s mouth gaped for a split-second, his black eyes widening in surprise, before he schooled his expression into something more aloof. “I totally knew how to do that.”

But the automaton didn’t seem interested in addressing Klarion’s fickle grasp of technology (a fact the kid was vaguely grateful for). Instead, that intense crimson stare was fixed on the witch boy’s face, seeming to gouge right down to his very soul.

“You speak of the destruction of kingdoms. Then you have heard of Eulalia, the True Heir to the Arcadian throne?”

Klarion tried to stifle a snicker, he really did! Unfortunately, he’d never been very good at suppressing his emotions, and his voice rang throughout the hall in a harsh, barked laugh. “No, no, I was talking in general. I don't care much about the particulars. But come on, a True Heir? To Arcadia? Ha! If there ever was such a person… if they wanted to be the true anything, maybe they should’ve tried staying alive, for one thing!”
 

Sigmund Vrell

Cosmic Brain
Staff member
Level 4
LV
1
 
Joined
Sep 9, 2018
Messages
105
Awards
1
Essence
€12,521
Coin
₡19,200
Tokens
30
World
Inverxe
Profile
Click Here
Klarion and Aquarius faced off in front of the elevator, the automaton looming over the boy witch who had just unknowingly (or, rather, very knowingly) insulted the last tragic heir of the golden age. Before the pair could test how quickly security would react to a brawl, however, a booming voice sounded from beneath a nearby bench.

“Hello there, friends and/or foes, threatening to come to blows, the great Sand Hawk has arrived!” The bench flew up into the air as the bandit kicked it upwards, rolling out from beneath it as it landed back in place. The pair forgot their quarrel for a moment as Sand Hawk rose to his feet, spilling sand all over the lobby he straightened his cloak, much to Coda’s dismay.

“First a child, then a clown.” Aquarius rumbled, obviously unimpressed by the rogue’s entrance.

“Oh, I love clowns!” The bandit said excitedly, glancing around for the jester, only to be sorely disappointed when none were readily apparent.

“That aside…” The automaton cut in sternly. “That slander of the true heir will not be tolerated.”

“Honestly, if you’re so hung over on this ‘true heir’ Ukulele, you need to get your priorities on straight.” Klarion tutted, shrugging at the mechanised warrior. Aquarius bristled at the comment, but his retort was cut off by a concurring Sand Hawk.

“The Boy Scout has a point, devoting one’s life to the ukulele is a poor choice, it is an instrument with a low skill ceiling, unlike the piano, which I have been learning on and off for-“

“Was that another slight against the true heir?” The machine hissed, his mechanical eyes narrowing as he tried to sift the sense in his words from the nonsense. “Do you know the truth of the golden age too?”

“Never heard of it!” Sand Hawk said bluntly.

“Right. Just an idiot then.” Aquarius said, turning his gaze back to Klarion and taking a menacing step forward, only for Coda to cut in abruptly.

“I see that you two have had a… disagreement but I’m going to have to ask you to save it for the competition.” She said, keeping her tone as polite and composed as possible for someone attempting to stop a brawl in their place of work. The war machine and the boy witch both gave her a reluctant nod, shelving their respective desires to punish disrespect and to cause chaos. A silence hung over the group for a few moments before they realized that the repetitive dinging of the elevator had been repeating every few seconds in the background.

The pair turned to see Sand Hawk standing in the doorway of the elevator, excitedly fidgeting as the door repeatedly attempted to close, only to be blocked by his body and open once more.

“Do not mind me, people who I may or may not end up killing mercilessly, I’m just waiting here until everyone is ready to go!” He said, pushing the elevator door back open, much to the chagrin of the couple of guests who had already stepped inside but weren’t brave enough to ask him to move.
 

Dr. Caustic

Toxic Trapper
Level 2
LV
0
 
Joined
Jul 4, 2020
Messages
52
Essence
€5,514
Coin
₡400
Tokens
0
World
Erde Nona
Profile
Click Here
Faction
NERDS
I flashed back into existence with the pain in my chest throbbing as a constant reminder that I was mortal. Squinting down the hallway, I spotted an altercation in front of one of the elevator banks. Aquarius was facing off against a pale, wan little child with incredibly silly points in his hair. A low grumble of discontent is all that came from my lips as I stalked past Aquarius with hardly a hello. I was in no mood to verbally toy with the arcadian automaton. I wasn't hear for the True Heir, I was here for myself. And who knows? Perhaps if he sensed weakness he would target me first. I didn't trust the morals of simulacrums as far as I could throw them.

"Look, friends! Cease your spatting and behold another competitor! Welcome, friend! What's you-" The grinning fool in the elevator door waved excitedly.

I pointedly turned my back and strode to the opposite row of elevators, surreptitiously clutching my chest and struggling to regulate my breathing without have to spit. My finger jabbed the button in quick succession, and before any of the others there could react the doors slid open, I stepped inside, and mashed the "door close" button equally as fast.

I had no time to party with these fools. Looking at the floor guide, I saw the one marked for the training area. If the facilities this year were as expansive as last years, then I would hopefully find somewhere I could rest and recover to the best of my ability until the contest began.
 

Aquarius

The Calamitous Constellation
Level 1
LV
0
 
Joined
Nov 4, 2021
Messages
33
Essence
€3,862
Coin
₡3,500
Tokens
0
World
Erde Nona
Profile
Click Here
Caustic was here now, too. Interesting. He pondered if there would be an entrance for Anders as well. Then this child would know where his mouth could land him. And, just how many people wouldn’t stand for his intolerable behavior. The older scientist seemed disinterested in the dispute as he made his way to a different elevator. Aquarius kept his gaze on him a while as he tried to leave the scene. The man seemed uncomfortable, in pain even. The automaton offered him a solemn nod as he left and turned back to his previous irritations.

“I hope you’ve got more to offer in this game then just your mouth, boy.Aquarius pushed passed the arrogant witch infant to which he was gifted a well deserved scoff.

“Am I the boy? Who‘s the one so uppity about a few words thrown towards a dead person? Sounds like mommy issues if I’ve ever heard them.” The witch boy spat back towards the machine but did not receive a response. Aquarius was not allowed to strangle him here so he’d settle for doing so later.

He wandered towards the elevator being blocked by the newest annoyance, Seagull, or whatever the hell he’d said. Aquarius locked his glowing eye onto the man.

“Move. I’m finished here.“

“Ah ah ah!”
The bandit said with a playful tone. “What’s the password?”

There was an audible groan from both Aquarius and the guests behind Sand Hawk who were now accidentally his captives in this game of “keep the elevator door open”.
 

Shallan Davar

Knight Radiant
Level 2
LV
0
 
Joined
Sep 12, 2020
Messages
19
Essence
€4,566
Coin
₡12,000
Tokens
0
World
Mesa Roja
Profile
Click Here
Shallan was disoriented as she staggered out of the teleporter, pushing the hair out of her eyes and trying her best to keep any semblance of composure. Fortunately there didn’t seem to be anyone else in the facility. Shallan stepped forwards tentatively, glancing around at the artistry that lined the walls. It spoke to a very particular sort of decorator, though she supposed publicly announcing your competition as the “Death Game” should have already told her significant amounts about the kind of person who would run an event like this.

Her snooping was interrupted by the sudden appearance of yet another false smile, this time from a refined young woman with impossible poise. Her hair was perfectly symmetrical and her dress the precise middle ground between practicality and elegance. Her clipboard was even held in one hand with a deliberate angle for prompt note-taking while looking like it was a part of the outfit. Everything about her spoke of the perfect hostess. Shallan disliked her immediately.

“And a good day to you, Brightness Shallan. We are honored to have you joining us for this year’s event. I am Ms. Terrace. If there’s anything I can do to be of assistance you have but to ask.”

She motioned Shallan to follow as turned gracefully to begin walking further into the facility.

“From the sounds of it you’ve been having a rough time. If you wish for a meal or a change of clothes there are a number of restaurants and shops here which give free patronage to contestants. If you’d prefer to spend your time in study, the library here is quite extensive. We may not be Syntech, but we’ve an impressive reservoir of knowledge, rivaling many of the best in the Crossroads.”

Shallan scowled inwardly, not just because things like a change of clothes or a meal sounded particularly enticing after her desert sojourn. It was the ludicrous dichotomy of the thing! They were forcing her to participate in a contest to the death, and were acting as though they were providing some sort of service in the process!

“You are surprisingly polite for kidnappers.” Shallan mused, adopting her own veneer of pleasantry. Ms. Terrace’s smile remained permanently in place.

“On the contrary, Brightness. Our employer believes that contestants are to be afforded every courtesy upon their arrival. It is a commendable thing to be willing to take their life into one’s one hands so readily.”

“Oh indeed. Such an honor that you have contestants lining up at gunpoint to sign up!”

Ms. Terrace gave a politely patronizing laugh, which only served to further antagonize Shallan. They stopped in front of an elevator which gave a pristine ding as the doors slid open. Ms. Terrace stepped inside, turning about with grace. Shallan paused in the doorway.

“Destination, Brightness?” Ms. Terrace smiled as she waited, “Shall I take you to the Recreation level for a meal?”

She was being led around like a storming chuul, and soon enough she’d be killed like one. She pushed aside her stomach’s protest for food. She would make these decisions on her own for once, thank you very much!

“You are supposed to give us anything we want right?” Shallan’s eyes twinkled faintly. The smile faded for half a millisecond as Ms. Terrace paused.

“Oh, why of course, Brightness. Whatsoever a contestant wishes is to be-”

“Wonderful, I’ll be borrowing that clipboard, then!” Shallan grinned pleasantly, reaching out and plucking the pad of paper from the surprised woman’s hands.

“B-But-”

“I’ll just wander about the place for a bit I suspect, but don’t let me stop you from taking the tour!”

Shallan reached one arm out, pressing every button on the elevator’s panel before stepping back out into the hallway. It was a personal victory for her that Ms. Terrace’s smile had turned to a look of distress as she reached a hand out to object somehow. Shallan beamed, giving a polite wave as the elevator’s doors slid closed.

Shallan glanced down at the pad of paper. Of course it didn’t actually have anything written on it, it was all for show, after all. It had a pen with it though, so that was enough. Shallan glanced up and down the hallway considering. Now she just needed to find a good place to sit and draw.
 

Sigmund Vrell

Cosmic Brain
Staff member
Level 4
LV
1
 
Joined
Sep 9, 2018
Messages
105
Awards
1
Essence
€12,521
Coin
₡19,200
Tokens
30
World
Inverxe
Profile
Click Here
“You have to be joking.” Aquarius groaned. Were he an organic being, he would almost certainly have developed a headache at this point. The war machine watched irritably as Sand Hawk shifted his stance, leaning against the wall with one arm and nodding to him.

“So, I would ask if you come here often, but seeing as you don’t know the password, I think I already have my answer!” The bandit laughed, adjusting his shades and fixing his muffler to hide his shit-eating grin. The automaton shook off a vague desire to strangle the rogue, instead wracking his brain for whatever nonsense that the gate-keeping cretin would want to let him pass.

“Is it ‘the Great’...”

Shit. He couldn’t remember what his dumb name was.

“The Great Sea Hawk.” Klarion cut in, grinning smugly at his wrong answer. Aquarius shook his head, ready to admonish the foolish answer, only to stop as Sand Hawk rubbed his chin for a moment before nodding.

“I am accepting that answer, I am, I am, and so I welcome you into the elevator, my friend!” The former secondary said approvingly, stepping aside with a bow as he gestured for the witch boy to enter. The Chaos Lord’s cheeks were starting to hurt from grinning too hard as he waltzed inside, though his elation faded as he realized that he had no idea what was actually going to happen once the door was actually allowed to close.

“But that’s not your name.” Aquarius quietly seethed.

“Of course it isn’t, but I found it pretty funny, so I let it slide!” Sand Hawk cackled, smoothly sliding back into his signature elevator-blocking pose.

“I- fine. ‘The Great Sea Hawk’.” The warmachine sighed, wanting the whole situation to be over and done with. Instead of letting him pass, however, the bandit reached up and lowered his sunglasses while leaning forward, his eyebrow raised in an impression of a certain mineral-themed, DA-affiliated wrestler who was tragically absent from this event.

“Incorrect!”

“What. Do you mean?” Aquarius hissed, doing all he could to prevent himself from killing the rogue then and there.

“Well, you heard the last password, so I changed it!” Sand Hawk answered matter-of-factly, as if it were the most obvious thing in the world.

“Forget this, I’m going to use one of the other elevators.” The automaton groaned, turning to leave that entire farce behind. As he did, however, the bandit tapped rapidly on his shoulder.

“Wow, that was the new password, you guys are really in the know huh!?” He said, amazed, before stepping back and making room for the war machine to step inside. Aquarius glanced between the elevator next to him and those across the room a few times, weighing his options carefully before skeptically stepping inside, shooting a death glare to the more ‘interesting’ pair of passengers. “Excellent, now we can be off!”

With that, Sand Hawk properly stepped inside the elevator, finally letting the door close with a ‘ding’. The entire elevator, barring Klarion who was in a strange state between enjoying the chaos and slightly freaking out at the experience of an elevator, breathed a sigh of relief, believing that they were finally on their way.

“So, what floor are we all off to?!” The bandit asked. Had he not been wearing sunglasses, the elevator’s occupants would have noticed the mad glint in his eye. His captive audience each began to give their own answers of their destinations when he raised his hand, silencing them all. “I hear you all, and fret not, I have the solution!”

With that, Sand Hawk slapped his hand on the panel of floor buttons and swiftly swiped his hand across it, hitting each and every one. A chorus of groans and outraged jeers filled the elevator as the madman from the Dunes did his best to suppress a bout of laughter at his prank.

This game was going to be incredible if he survived his elevator trip!
 

Ezrihel

Charismatic Duelist
Level 3
LV
1
 
Joined
May 12, 2019
Messages
21
Awards
3
Essence
€9,108
Coin
₡3,500
Tokens
0
World
Opealon
Profile
Click Here
A flash of light beamed across one of the teleporter pads, dimming to reveal a dazed looking azure-haired man. He blinked, rubbing at his face as he got his bearings. They told him it'd be exactly this bad. “Augh, wow... My head is killing me... and my eyes. They did not undersell the after feeling.”

He wobbled slightly on his feet, trying his damnedest to get used to the sudden and sickeningly noticeable loss of his enhanced abilities. He felt like he’d blinded himself, and stuffed cotton in his ears. He couldn’t feel the vibrant flames of life dancing around him. The world was strange, plain, and remarkably dull.

Plain-Jane humans really didn’t know what they were missing out on, he thought as he looked around, squinting like an old man. The place looked pretty nice, lavish even. Personally, he tended to prefer rougher looking places, more homely run-down ones owned by moms and pops and passed down to the kids for safe keepings.

This place looked more like it was his boss’s speed, what with its artesanal vases of elegant plants, and perpetually yellowing classical paintings.

A chipper, cute little blonde lady approached, beaming up at him as she brushed a stray lock of hair away and craned her neck. “Hello sir, you must be Sari al-Waheed, the Andromedan.”

She was teensy, so short that he might’ve accidentally tripped over her like an oddly placed end table in the dark if she hadn’t called out. He stopped, bending at the waist for the sake of her neck. “Ah, yes. That’s me, little lady. You are, uh..” He glanced at her breast pocket, spying her name tag.

Aw, she was a total cutie: she’d written her name in bubble letters and pink sparkly glitter. It was a nice lil’ personal touch on the otherwise cookie-cutter staff uniform.

“Miss Coda, yeah?”

“Yessir! It’s a pleasure to welcome you to our wonderful facility. I understand you are standing in to represent a Mister Althaus?”

“Well,” he chuckled, “they certainly didn’t let me arrive sitting down~ Yes, I’m here on behalf of my Boss, General Althaus of the Phantom Blossom. Don’t let him catch you skimping on his titles now.” He sassed playfully. “Say, this is my first time ever being here. You don’t happen to give tours or hand out maps, do you ma’am?”

“Oh, of course.” She miraculously produced a tri-fold map from who-knows-where and handed it off to him. “Come along and follow me. I can show you to the elevators and answer any questions you may have.”

“Sounds great, thank you.” He unfolded the map, studying it as he plodded along behind her, taking only half as many steps as the diminutive woman. His turquoise eyes instantly landed on one place in particular. “Hey, Miss Coda, what’s this ‘Star Dome’ place all about?”

“Oh, it’s beautiful. It’s the upper most floor of our facility, and it consists of a large and open park housed under a massive glass dome. It’s got a stunning view, you can see the stars and nebulas very clearly. It’s a nice place to relax if you enjoy meditation or nature.”

He hummed as he listened intently. He was pretty partial to meditating in nature and under the vast heavenly smattering of the cosmos. After another brief moment of silence the staff member came to a halt and gestured in front of her to a couple of elevators. The blue-haired man breathed out a soft sigh and smiled warmly at her, pressing his palms together and dipping in a bow to her. “And here we are, the elevators. You are truly a shepherd to the lost and weary, surely you walk with Rilus, Miss Coda~”

She smiled politely, but tilted her head a small bit. “Rilus?”

He pressed the button to call the elevator, a cheeky grin slapped on his face. He already had a location in mind, somewhere even better than the star dome she’d still totally sold him on. “Yes, our god of mercy.”

“Why the god of mercy?”

“Because you saw me and took mercy on my sorry, lost hide, my friend!” Right then the elevator dinged, the doors sliding open just as effortlessly as Sari would then slide in. He punched the button to the floor he was eagerly awaiting. “May Vaidehi bless your path.”​

"You're going to the star dome?" Coda inquired innocently.

"No, I'm going to a place even better than the Star Dome, a place of infinite wonder, fun and wholesome enjoyment." He raised a closed fist close to his face as he dropped into an expression of pure, determined focus. "I'm gonna go dominate the arcade, like it's my birthright!"

"The arcade?" The small woman furrowed her brows, and laughed, amused by the alien's sincere enthusiasm for the hobby. “Oh, uh, goodbye!” She managed to call before the doors clicked shut.​
 
Top