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File: 1596153988467.jpg (183.95 KB, 900x1289, 364d1628edf8a29aae4dc11b5d6a99…)

Shining Light: A Time of Heroes Thread 3: Never Sleeps Edition !Ren/VL7f/QCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563187[Last 50 Posts]

#Ask/Invite #Canon: Lost Light Universe #Era: Shining Light #Superheroes #IC

>A world never sleeps. There is always something in motion. And while one person rests, another person will be going through events that will change the very fabric of their being. So, no matter the time, a world never sleeps.


>In fact, when it's night, the world usually has the stories that are the most interesting. The moonlit confrontations next to towering buildings. Feelings pouring out under a torrent of rain by the light of streetlamps. Something as simple as a bare knuckle brawl on a prairie next to a river. There's a magic to night that can make anything seem poetic, and wonderful.


>Whether the roaring torrent of feelings was the last desperate attempt to convince somebody that they were meant to be together, or an amorous young adult in a night club attempting to explain to their would-be paramour why the mullet is objectively Superman's best haircut.


>That's the kind of world this is. Conflicts of world-ending portents, rising emotion. People crossing fists for fun, and arguments so heated that they couldn't be about anything other than the trivial.


>Both are important. Both are enjoyable.


>Welcome to Shining Light.


Wiki: the-lost-light-rebellion-rp.wikia.com/wiki
OOC: https://www.ponychan.net/rp/res/41515894+50.html
Lost Light IC: https://www.ponychan.net/rp/res/41541214+50.html
Lost Light Tales: https://www.ponychan.net/rp/res/41515262+50.html
Morning Light IC: https://www.ponychan.net/rp/res/41550358+50.html
This post was edited by its author on .

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563189

File: 1596159451111.png (1.53 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_thinks_Mezo_saved_their_…)

>>41563186
>Albert mentally smacked himself a little after Inara revealed how she was keeping cool, realizing that he probably should've done the same long before now
>he opened his mouth to comment, but stopped when he saw her just dump some of the water on her head
>and then shook the extra off almost like a dog, which was equal parts odd and cute
>which...described Inara in a nutshell, really

>when she offered the bottle to him, he nodded slightly and took it


Ah, yeah, thank you...

>though rather than take a drink, Albert closed the bottle back up, and then placed it on the back of his neck, giving a soft sigh as he felt himself start to cool down already

>which made him a little more energized and able to speak a bit more properly

So, what're y' up to out in this heat, Inara?

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563191

File: 1596160028232.png (411.06 KB, 501x559, sneaky.png)

>>41563189
>letting out a bubbly giggle as Albert accepted her bottle, she hopped slightly in place
>"So, what're y' up to out in this heat, Inara?"
>she paused for a moment, as if really needing to take the time and think about her answer
>when, really, it was a simple:
Nothing much so far!

I look for things to be doing, yes?

Many adventure out in world, but it must be found first!

Maybe Albert not mind the company, perhaps? I let you keep to use bottle if you bring I with you!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563192

File: 1596162527565.png (2.95 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku's_new_braces.png)

>>41563191
>Albert lowered the bottle after a few seconds, handing it back to her so he didn't heat it up too much
>for a moment he wasn't sure if he should take her up on that, considering he was having second thoughts about actually going out and didn't want to hold her up on her adventuring
>but this was as good a reason as any to force himself to get used to the heat
>(he never truly would)

Well, I was plannin' on headin' to th' greenhouse.

Dunno how much fun that'd be, but if ya wanna come along...?

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563193

File: 1596163517313.png (33.71 KB, 88x247, jump.png)

>>41563192
YES!
>Inara excitedly answered with a hop
I love to come along with!
>she took the bottle back, slipping it back in its holster
I learn about the green house very recent too.

Which one we go to? The big one or the smaller one?

>she let out a quiet little chuckle

>bringing her hand up, she gave a light pound over her chest with her knuckles
I feel much confidence! I stand proudly with plants surrounding I today! No fear what so or ever!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563194

File: 1596164260569.png (545.73 KB, 917x917, Izuku_Midoriya_school_headshot…)

>>41563193
>Albert tilted his head at Inara's seeming joke about "big or smaller" greenhouses
>it must've been something that got lost in translation because he really wasn't sure how to answer that
>her following remark about not being afraid to be near plants, however, really made him confused
>and as they stepped outside to begin their trek, he couldn't help but ask directly about it

No fear...?

Why would y' have anythin' t' be afraid of, bein' near plants? I doubt even th' ones near th' magic building are that dangerous...

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563195

File: 1596164844356.png (268.62 KB, 481x555, big worry.png)

>>41563194
>Inara flinched at Albert's question, trying her best to keep a straight face on
>she never told him about the whole "could explode at any moment" problem, did she?
>well... it'd be fine for now!
>no need to worry him about something she feels 120% absolutely positive won't happen today!
>just think positive, Inara!
R-Right... just... I hear stories, y-yes!

Man-eating flower and such... quite spooky!

>she cleared her throat, taking out her bottle to drop a bit more water onto herself

>was it just her, or was it getting warmer!?
S-So, magic building! The smaller one...

I meet strange boy who go there once. He sell "dank weed" to me and other girls!

It quite refreshing for warm days! Not been able to find him again since.

He talk funny. Albert talk little funny too! Why is that?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563196

File: 1596166208018.png (1.47 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_finds_out_he_pa…)

>>41563195
>Albert wasn't sure what to think of Inara's first response, but he didn't dwell on it very long anyway
>given the greenhouse's location it wouldn't be out of the realm of possibility that there was something unusual or potentially dangerous in there
>but why would they advertise a club there if it was really deadly?

>regardless, Albert had a very different subject to dwell on

>when Inara mentioned "dank weed", he jolted and did a double-take, staring at her with his mouth agape in shock
>he wasn't going to judge Inara for partaking but he was pretty sure that was still illegal!
>and the fact that someone was selling on-campus was a whole other matter
>so shocked was he by this that her remark about him talking funny only barely sank in, and he responded while still looking pretty floored by this

S-Some people jus' sound different, is all...

Uh...this...weed salesman...what'd he look like? Did he give a name?

>it probably wasn't who he was thinking of, but he wouldn't put it past him either

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563197

File: 1596166660662.png (62.46 KB, 194x238, I wonder.png)

>>41563196
>Inara blinked, but clearly not seeing anything off about this, she answered to the best of her abilities
No, he not...

But, well, he short. Blonde hair. Speak funny, again...

Oh! He melt! Really give me a spook!

I thought he in danger of turn to vapor, but he come back fine!

Not get name though. Forget to ask.

But he bring weed from magic green house! Maybe we meet funny talk boy there, yes?

Then I ask for more weed smoothie! Much good, especially for heat!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563198

File: 1596168438945.png (2.31 MB, 1920x1080, Shoto_says_he_worked_hard_on_h…)

>>41563197

.....

>again, Albert was left to dwell on just what exactly Inara was saying

>"weed smoothie" was definitely a term he never expected to hear in casual conversation, and it raised so many questions about what exactly she had gotten up to
>not to mention this seller apparently melting, quite literally
>but amidst all the wariness, Albert did internalize that this mysterious seller actually got the "weed" from the greenhouse, so that meant it was OK on campus?
>more and more questions that he had no answers to and Inara probably didn't know either

I, uh...wasn't aware they made that kinda thing...

<"Mostly because it sounds really suspicious."


An' yer definitely OK? Ya weren't sick or anythin' after drinkin' this..."weed smoothie"?

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563202

>>41563181

>Janice was confused

>after all of that, after all that relationship drama, after that outburst of tragic backstory, after that bit stunning revelation…
>and this is what Sandy was concerned with? Teasing her like this?
>...god, Janice picked the weirdest fuckin’ chick to develop a crush on.
>she just buried her face in her hands, blushing furiously and making a little “hhhhhh” noise.

...didn’t you have an existential crisis over being attracted to girls, like, a month ago? Freaking mixed signals.

>she exhaled and took a moment to get her thoughts in order…

>and then promptly punched Sandy in the shoulder once again, albeit with a softer look in her eye this time

You owe me a real nice date for putting up with you, y’know that?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563214

File: 1596327317205.png (153.93 KB, 223x388, Im not sure.png)

>>41563198
>"An' yer definitely OK?"
>Inara blinked, but was quick to answer
Yes! Definitely OK!

No sick at all!

Although one girl who drink turn blue. Little weird.
>she looked down at herself, tilting her head
I not turn blue. Just feel much refreshed!

Maybe you try! Help with survive with the Sun, yes?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563215

File: 1596327728464.png (507.75 KB, 714x524, what is it.png)

>>41563202
>Sandy herself was a bit surprised at how... casually she felt like she could talk now
>almost like the path had completely opened up before her, and all those tightly-kept mental barriers were torn down
<"If there's a chance Ah can control mahself..."
...
>"You owe me a real nice date for putting up with you, y'know that?"
Yeah...
>she answered a bit quietly
Ah'll take ya to th' finest Wendy's in th' city, fer sure.

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563216

File: 1596329911112.png (1.42 MB, 1920x1080, Pixie-Bob_is_18_at_heart.png)

>>41563214
>Albert couldn't really figure out how to comprehend what Inara was telling him
>the statement that one girl had turned blue after drinking this "weed smoothie" left him staring in disbelief at her
>this was sounding more and more sketchy with every statement Inara made

...might be a bit too much, it sounds like...

>there wasn't really much reason to dance around this, given how much he was hearing now


Honestly, this kinda sounds...dangerous, more than anythin'.

Yer lucky y' didn't turn blue, honestly.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563217

File: 1596330309376.png (59.79 KB, 157x277, goofy.png)

>>41563216
>Inara hummed
I think I know what Albert mean.

But, but! I show smoothie to scientists!

They test it, and tell I if safe!
>she hit her knuckles over her chest with a huff, looking proud of her initiative
I let Albert know too when I know!

If safe, we share smoothie, yes~?
>she let out a giggle
>if whatever plants the boy had used were really safe for consumption, they made it so easy for her to control her body temperature
>if she could use them to prevent any more unwanted exploding, then she'd be drinking them every single day!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563219

File: 1596332159202.png (957.39 KB, 1080x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_debut.png)

>>41563217
>Albert still couldn't help but feel like this whole thing was way too suspicious, but he was more surprised that Inara just wanted to take this in stride
>he wasn't sure if she was just blase about her own safety, or was just willing to take the chance for the sake of trying something new
>either way, he couldn't help but smile a bit at how energetically happy she was, that energy starting to rub off on him a little

W-Well, if yer that sold on 'em, I'd be happy to.

>of course he didn't really dwell on how he basically agreed to a kinda-sorta date with Inara

>at least, not in that moment
>instead, he couldn't help but try to voice his amazement in a somewhat clever way

Yer just a bowl full of sunshine, aren't ya? How can ya be so positive all th' time?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563220

File: 1596333222086.png (381.06 KB, 767x559, its a promise.png)

>>41563219
>"Yer just a bowl of sunshine, aren't ya?"
>Inara blinked, but quickly let out another bubbly giggle at the comment
>her face felt a bit warmer, but not enough to get her to worry
It no hard thing!

I push all energy towards happy thought, and leave bad thought with none!

If think bad thoughts all time, no get thing done, yes?

Some time you just need to put on brave face, and run forward to unknown!
>she swung a fist forward, giving the air in front of her a few punches
>then chuckled, grinning widely at Albert
How about Albert?

I bet he no grump! He seem happy! Just sweaty!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563221

File: 1596334690143.png (2.95 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku's_new_braces.png)

>>41563220
>Albert gave a somewhat weak smile at Inara's remark about him, rather quick to refute what she said

I-I wouldn't really say that...

It's like...I get "sweaty" t' get away from bein' grumpy? Sorta?

>he opted not to comment on how exactly he gets "sweaty", considering what a statement like that could include

>though regardless, he was downplaying the effect that had on him, as he usually was feeling happy after he got "sweaty"

Although, maybe that's th' same thing...?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563222

File: 1596335942052.png (248.07 KB, 340x556, ready to go.png)

>>41563221
>Inara hummed, but quickly nodded her head
I understand!

Some time, I need to get sweaty too!
>she jogged a little in place to demonstrate
I feel not so positive some time too, and so distract self with fun stuff!

Like draw! Or, or sew! And some time, I work out sweat!

>she raised her arms, flexing to show off those impressive arms of her

Work out fun, yes? Sweat make feel like hard work really get done!
>she then looked at Albert
>and reached out to poke his arm
Albert know all about it, yes?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563224

File: 1596337858577.jpg (596.21 KB, 800x1144, 1529025777275_MHA_Deku_boy_fit…)

>>41563222
>Albert jolted slightly at the poke to his arm, but nonetheless kept a friendly visage as he answered Inara

Y-Yeah, yeah, definitely! It's more jus' a habit from workin' on th' farm, so it's th' closest substitute I've got, y'know?

>Albert couldn't help but feel at this point he wasn't really being an interesting conversationalist

>working out was just something he did, not something he was deeply engaged in, so it wasn't like he could really get in deep about it
>so he had to try and turn things around so there was less of a chance to make an ass of himself

Drawin' sounds like a fun hobby, though!

Is it, like, standalone drawings? Or comic books, or something like that?

beat trapped in phone hellCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563235

>>41563215

>Janice... wasn’t sure if that was a joke or not. it never really occurred to her to figure out exactly what Sandy’s idea of “high society” was, given that she grew up in some shack in rural buttfuck nowhere, but...

>eh, whatever. that was beside the point.
>Sandy just had a major personal discovery and was maybe actually for realsies open to being A Thing, so, that was good enough for now.
>...plus, Sandy definitely seemed to appreciate the big ol’ Surprise-style makeover, so that was appreciated.

>and sitting there like that, a thought started to creep into Janice’s mind

>a little bit of newfound confidence that she hadn’t had before
>...well, they came this far, what’s the worst that could happen?
>Janice leaned forward and cranes herself up a couple inches to give Sandy a chaste little kiss on the cheek

... I’m still mad at you. Especially since you made me ruin my makeup. This was really expensive, y’know that?

Stupid monkey.

>and yet, that last part came out more like a term of endearment

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563237

File: 1596423696075.png (411.06 KB, 501x559, sneaky.png)

>>41563224
>if Inara was uninterested in Albert, she certainly didn't look it
>the smile on her face remained immovable as she followed him along
>only being somewhat distracted by the age-old tradition of "only stepping on the colored stones in the pavement"
>"Is it, like, standalone drawings? Or comic books, or something like that?"
Oh, no, no!

Not like that!

Maybe... paint? Would be better word?

I paint room! Give it much color, yes? Make it nice and happy all the time!

Very fun! That, yes! Paint have very nice smell~!
>she giggled a bit
I not much good at draw, but it not important!

Important is have much fun, and end with pretty room! No need to know draw to make pretty colors, yes~?

Just splash, splash; even use hands some time; have fun and enjoy results!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563240

File: 1596425111364.png (2.31 MB, 1920x1080, Shoto_says_he_worked_hard_on_h…)

>>41563237
>Albert looked noticeably surprised at Inara's clarification
>not so much that she painted instead of drew - he could actually see her do that
>hell, she seemed like the type to do...exactly what she said, just splash paint everywhere and be happy with the results
>if she used an easel it'd probably just be a rainbow of random ink blots and she'd be very proud of it
>it was what she painted that left him surprised

They let you paint yer room?

How'd ya manage t' get that arranged? That can't have been easy!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563241

File: 1596504741091.png (513.73 KB, 714x524, Ill think about it.png)

>>41563235
>Sandy froze up slightly as she felt the kiss over her cheek
>there wasn't much of a reaction, which even she was surprised by
>this didn't feel terrifying; she didn't feel the need to run away
>why was that!?
...

...

Yes'm...

>fuck it

>she'd done enough thinking for one day
>her arms sneakily wrapped around Janice
>and pulled her in for a soft embrace, Sandy's head resting over Janice's
>and she just enjoyed that; holding Janice nearby

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563242

File: 1596505019586.png (62.46 KB, 194x238, I wonder.png)

>>41563240
>Inara blinked, taken a bit by surprise at Albert's question
They... not let you?
>she tilted her head, clearly news to her
I not have do much for get permission; only ask if OK, and they say OK all the time!

Maybe Albert only need ask too?

Or... maybe different rule for room in lab or normal room?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563243

File: 1596505564468.png (2.26 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_thinks_about_the_Room_Ki…)

>>41563242
>Albert just looked more confused with Inara's answer, reflexively responding in turn

Well, I never really thought t' ask...I don't see why they'd let me do somethin' like that...

Whenever I graduate, they'll want t' give th' room t' someone else, so-

>he stopped mid-sentence, realizing that he'd glossed over something else Inara said

>and now sounded more concerned when he resumed talking

...your room's in a lab...?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563245

File: 1596512873761.png (268.62 KB, 481x555, big worry.png)

>>41563243
>Inara flinched a little at Albert's question, suddenly realizing what she'd said
>she didn't want Albert to think she was dangerous, not now!
>just relax, Inara; act cool, act confident, and you can get through this!
U-Uhh...

W-Well, yes! Iiiii... live in Labs, yes!
>she pointed at the building in the distance that lead to the Academy's Labs
Lots live there! Is pretty normal! N-Nothing strange!

It temporary, though! I-I leave eventually, and get other room! Maybe even get mate of room, yes?

H-Hah hah! Would be fun if Albert and Inara end up mates, yes? M-Much coincidence! Hah hah...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563247

File: 1596552339799.png (2.14 MB, 1920x1080, You're_next_Izuku.png)

>>41563245
>Albert still looked a tad concerned after Inara's response, though not for the reasons she was likely thinking of
>he still had to go through regular testing to ensure he was getting a handle on his powers, so going to the lab wasn't such a weird thing for him
>but living in a lab must've meant that her powers, whatever they were, required a lot more to get control over
>and judging by what she said, she didn't really know what went on outside of the labs, which must've meant she was in there already for a while
>making him more concerned about her health than anything else

...yeah, I guess it would be...

Although I'm pretty sure they don't allow co-ed roomin'...

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563251

File: 1596656004915.png (153.93 KB, 223x388, Im not sure.png)

>>41563247
>Inara let out a small "phew" of relief as Albert seemed to get off the subject
>she couldn't help but feel a bit guilty about lying, but when you think about it, she wasn't lying lying!
>Albert simply never asked her why she was at the Labs, or what her powers were!
>so it's not technically lying if she isn't answering questions that were never asked!
>very smart, Inara!
>at least Albert provided something to distract her brain with
What is... "co-ed"?
>she asked as she turned to him
>"co"... education?
>what did that have to do with rooming together?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563252

File: 1596657273214.png (1.4 MB, 1920x1080, Tsuyu_All_Might_comparison.png)

>>41563251
>Albert stumbled slightly when Inara asked her innocent question, his face heating up a bit in turn
>yes, clearly Inara had been kept from learning a lot about the outside world
>which meant he'd have to try and explain this whole thing
>hopefully he didn't have to go too far into detail, because that was more than his poor brain would be able to handle

W-Well...I mean, a guy 'n a girl sharin' a room.

Th-That's not exactly somethin' th' staff would be OK with, I don't think...

>he was noticeably avoiding looking directly at Inara as he said this, something she hopefully wouldn't pick up on

>but given Murphy's Law, she probably would

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563253

File: 1596657665372.png (233.37 KB, 351x487, pouting face.png)

>>41563252
Oooooh...
>at least she seemed to understand the concept quickly enough
>but her head tilted, clearly still curious
Why that? Bit strange, I think.

Why not let friends together just because one boy and one girl?

That dumb rule! Friends should be let to be with friends! You agree, yes?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563254

File: 1596659213270.png (1.3 MB, 1366x768, Izuku,_Ochaco_&_Tenya.png)

>>41563253
>Albert was still avoiding looking directly at Inara after her next question, feeling like he should've known this would come up and having to scramble to give as sensible an explanation as he could
>again, without getting too into detail

Y-Yeah, i-ideally...

But th' staff jus' wanna avoid any kinda situation that they figure would come up with a guy 'n a girl stayin' together.

An' th' sorta...things they'd get up to...

<"Please please please take the hint!"

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563255

File: 1596660334953.png (40.35 KB, 85x304, punishment.png)

>>41563254
>Inara's antennae gave a slight twitch
>and the curious look on her face only grew more curiouser
What do Albert mean?

What do boy and girl do when together that so bad!

Can not be so bad compare to what boy and boy, or girl and girl do together, yes? Because I seen it!

That grapple and toss and throw on TV! That lots of boy on boy, and girl on girl!
>she paused, thinking
Actually, boy on girl too, some time...

But it not look much worse than boy on boy, or girl on girl!

So what is it!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563256

File: 1596661390595.png (1.92 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_listens_to_Eijiro's_plea…)

>>41563255

<"Oh my God why."


>the fact that Inara was basically describing wrestling completely passed by Albert's mind at that point, as he had to face the fact that he had to clarify what he was getting at


<"Just say it and get it over with!"


<"I can't, it's just weird to say it!"


<"You're practically an adult, you've done it before, so just get it out!"


<"I didn't do it with her!"


>after a bit more agonizing, his face getting redder and redder, he finally faced Inara and said:


Sex.

I'm talking about sex.

>somehow, way more flatly than even he expected to sound
This post was edited by its author on .

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563257

File: 1596663137932.png (74.48 KB, 129x422, unbelievable.png)

>>41563256
...
>there was a pause
>a rather lengthy pause
>and Inara could feel her face heat up with each passing second
>even with her pink complexion, the redness was brightly visible upon it
>and it just grew, and gre, and grew, right until-
>KPAFF!
>Inara's head exploded
>quite literally so, as the chemicals beneath Inara's skin had been triggered by the jump in heat
>leading to a loud and uncomfortable explosion, resulting in a very charred-looking Inara
>that had been rather painful, Inara keeping her teeth grit and her eyes closed for a few seconds
>before slowly opening her eyes, smoke still rising from her mildly-burnt and scarred skin
>luckily, Inara was tough; this hurt, but it wasn't terrible, and it would heal in due time
>unlike the fact that Albert just saw her explode and would undoubtedly have many questions, and her carefully crafted house of lie-cards had just come tumbling down hard

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563258

File: 1596664239960.png (2.03 MB, 1920x1080, Mei's_aggressive_personality.p…)

>>41563257

...?

>Albert watched as Inara's face started to get redder with each passing second, wondering if even mentioning that was going too far

>or maybe she was getting mad at him for bringing something like that up
>though it was probably neither of those things, since she was getting so red it was actually pretty alarming-

>KPAFF!


-?!

>Albert jolted when Inara's head actually exploded in front of him, jumping a couple of steps back in the process

>right before he was going to lean in and ask how she was, no less, so he narrowly avoided a blast to his own face in that case
>and while he should probably wonder how that happened, he instead moved closer to check Inara's burnt face in the aftermath, now really freaked out

Inara! Are you OK?! What happened?!

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563259

File: 1596665577667.png (268.62 KB, 481x555, big worry.png)

>>41563258
>Inara slowly pushed a grin onto her face, trying to show Albert she wasn't seriously hurt
It-cough... i-it fine...

I OK. No big problem.

Is just-cough... is just what I do...
>she answered, having no real excuse anymore to try and weasel her way out this time
I's power is-... I go boom. A lot. By accident, much...

I sorry. I should warn Albert sooner, b-but... I not want him to feel scared of-...
>she shrunk slightly, clearly feeling quite guilty over her silence about her true nature

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563260

File: 1596667593378.png (730.09 KB, 1080x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_headshot_2.png)

>>41563259
>Albert blinked a couple of times after Inara's explanation, as everything started to make sense
>the whole reason she was living in the labs and seemed to know so little about what things were like outside of it must've been because of these powers of hers
>and while she didn't state just how dangerous her powers could be, the implication was pretty evident
>but he couldn't really be mad at her for keeping that secret, considering how much he kept his own powers secret
>not to mention that he was there to get his powers under control, so he could definitely understand where she was coming from, even if his own situation probably wasn't as severe
>so, after a moment or two, he gave a soft smile even as he spoke in an anxious tone

It's alright, I'm not scared. I was just surprised, is all.

Are you sure you're OK, though? That looked like it hurt...

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563261

File: 1596670768796.png (156.2 KB, 289x412, wonder whats happening.png)

>>41563260
>"It's alright, I'm not scared."
>Inara felt a big weight on her chest deflate out of relief
>"Are you sure you're OK, though?"
Y-Yes... it do hurt, but I used to the boom.

It heal. Always heal, so...
>she shrugged her shoulders, reaching up with her hand
>but quickly flinched after touching herself
>she still gave him a shaky smile, trying her best not to worry him
It fine! Really! No need to worry!

Please, no let this change plans! I-I promise I be much-much careful for now on!

No more booms! None at all! Is promise! Circle heart and pray to dine!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563263

File: 1596681301632.png (1.6 MB, 1919x1079, Izuku_Going_To_UA.png)

>>41563261
>Albert still looked a bit worried even after Inara assured him she was fine, but her nervousness over how she was coming off seemed to be more important to her
>so he again tried to assuage her concerns

Really, it's OK, don't worry 'bout that. Sometimes controllin' yer powers is hard, I know.

>he paused, then added without thinking about it too much


And...sorry fer...y'know, settin' y' off like that...

<"Yeah, that's a big help, I'm sure."

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563264

File: 1596682026198.png (257.67 KB, 431x547, concern.png)

>>41563263
Ah-!
>Inara jolted a bit, already feeling her face warm up again
>thankfully, since she'd already exploded, she was safe from a second one this soon
N-N-No, no! I-Is I fault! Not Albert! No apology!

I the one sorry! Much sorry, yes! Just- Just taken to surprise! I sorry!

>she shrunk a bit again, face feeling hot (well, hotter, since it was still pretty singed)

>it was her questioning that led to Albert saying... that, so she felt like she was the one to blame here
I-Is hard to control, yes. But I should still be at doing so.

When lose control, only I fault. Must focus on body heat at all time.

When control it, I finally leave Lab, and be allow to live with those like Albert.

Without worry...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563267

File: 1596683765136.png (2.03 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_uses_All_Might's_smile.p…)

>>41563264
>Albert nearly apologized again, but withheld his Canadian instincts so as to avoid a second explosion on Inara's part
>he'd probably be fine if she did but it was best to prevent her dealing with more pain and embarrassment
>so instead he gave another slight smile, in the hopes that maybe he could get her spirits up

I'm sure y' will!

However stressful 'r difficult it is now, I know you'll get a handle on it an' be jus' fine goin' forward! I can tell this means a lot t' ya, so if y' jus' keep at it, you'll accomplish yer goal!

Jus' believe in yerself! I believe in ya, so there's no reason y' can't!

>shortly after this he'd wonder if he was trying too hard to be encouraging, but in the moment he was just thinking that it'd help perk Inara's spirits up

>hopefully, anyway

Inara Nobel!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563268

File: 1596684285684.png (84.07 KB, 223x307, cheer on.png)

>>41563267
>it didn't take long before Albert knew if he'd managed to perk her up or not
>as a very wide and sunny smile quickly stretched along Inara's lips
Yes! I do it!
>she swung a fist up in a display of confidence
I do it because much people believe in I!

Albert! Janice! Cleo! Thoth! Jasmine! Many believe me!

I not give up, ever! One day I control boom, and show everybody I do it!

>she grinned widely at Albert again with a light giggle

Thank you much, Albert! Your words, they much inspiring!

I sure I believe in I! No doubt!

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563271

File: 1596756715651.png (33.73 KB, 167x171, are you really this stupid.png)

>it was a normal day, but a bit less busy
>at least for Bram it was; his schoolwork was all done, so he didn't have that shit to worry about
>and he wasn't going to spend each and every afternoon toiling away at his inventions
>so for today, relaxation was on the menu; nice and snug in his dorm where the AC was a welcome third roommate
>lazying in bed, phone in hand, mindlessly scrolling through STAR's super secret forums for the latest memes or whatever
>he wasn't really looking for anything specific, just going where the wind of "that looks interesting, I guess" took him
Ugh... everyone's just posting pictures of their vacations...
>he grumbled out loud
Rub it in the faces of everyone, why don't you...

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563272

File: 1596757824643.jpg (57.96 KB, 480x720, 3c03cfee1dc08cd19eb62626df0a3d…)

>>41563271
>Danny was fortunate enough (so far at least) to avoid any sort of backlash for his business endeavor, so he was feeling pretty pleased with himself over that
>not that he really needed the money, but he felt like he might have an idea of how to successfully do business, which was important for when his time at STAR-A was over
>of course he clearly still had a lot to learn, but he wasn't going to let something silly like "truth in advertising" get to him

>for the moment, the more important thing was hanging out with his roomie, who was clearly not in a good mood

>so he decided to help the only way he knew how
>by being an ass

Ah do hate ta break it t' ya, buddy, but that's what normal people with more money than sense tend ta do durin' naice weathah.

>his arm then shifted to a watery state, allowing it to extend across the room, so that his still-solid hand could lightly pat Bram on the head


But don't worry, ya can spend th' summah with yer best friend, raigh'?

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563273

File: 1596758535332.png (72.34 KB, 290x416, you disgust me.png)

>>41563272
>Bram glanced aside, giving Danny a harsh leer at the head pat
>"But don't worry, ya can spend th' summah with yer best friend, raigh'?"
...

...

Y'know what, Danny?

You're absolutely right. How did I not think of that sooner?

>he focused back on his phone

I wonder what Lance is up to.

I should just go hang out with him instead of spending the day in-
>he paused mid-sentence, a noticeable frown appearing on his face
...never mind; guess I'll just stay here like I originally planned.
>he tossed his phone aside, sinking further into his pillow
>while reaching to the drawer next to him, taking out a book for him to read
You'll make due for company, yeah?

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563274

File: 1596759670341.jpg (90.18 KB, 736x889, 8e7b53db54c682af551e0ad31291de…)

>>41563273

<"I'm bad at friendship sometimes."


>Danny pouted a bit as he retracted his arm, figuring it was just a bit of snarking between the two of them

>but he did wonder sometimes if he was just being a dick and not really friendly at all
>it was hard to tell what was hitting a sore spot and what wasn't
>though he assumed if he did ever go too far Bram would say so, right?

>he did notice that Bram's plan of action abruptly changed, which was something to probably poke at and see what was going on

>that's what friends did, of course

Well, Ah'll certainly do mah best...

But if ya wanted ta hang out with Laaaaance, don't let me stop ya~! Ah'm sure he'd be more than happy ta give ya plenty of attention~!

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563275

File: 1596760494090.png (75.96 KB, 320x330, what do you want.png)

>>41563274
>there was a grumble, but a very quiet and easy to miss one
Lance is at the gym with Zach right now.
>the tone of voice really wasn't being as well hidden as Bram probably thought it was
I can't exactly join in, so what's the point in interrupting them.
>opening the book, he sought to bury himself into it and just ignore everything else
This is just as fine. Reading a book in a cooled room is much better than spending the afternoon in a hot and sweat-scented gym anyway.

So it's fine. Not even thinking about it anymore. It's fine.

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563276

File: 1596762782907.gif (989.71 KB, 500x375, -Kurapica-hunter-x-hunter-3696…)

>>41563275
>at the mention of Zach, Danny couldn't help but visibly grimace
>his first encounter with the vampire (???) was still not something he was keen to revisit, hence why he still tried to give him a wide berth when possible
>though he had noticed how he had clung to Lance like he had, so it was evident why exactly Bram was actually in a foul mood
>if his very obvious denials weren't enough of a hint

It's probably fer th' bettah, anyway. Wouldn't want ta be in th' same room when Zach suddenly decaides it'd be funny ta play jump rope with his own intestines.

It'd be bettah ta wait an' get some alone taime with Lance when that's ovah.

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563277

File: 1596764006420.png (39.45 KB, 183x187, go away scum.png)

>>41563276
>there was a louder grumble this time, followed by a scoff
You say that like it's easy.

Trying to find Mister Universal Popularity all by himself is about as rare as seeing Janice in any color but black and purple.

>he let the book fall to his chest, clearly in ranting mode right now

I'm sure he'll meet some girl in the middle of his workout, and she'll probably introduce him to her friends and they'll already have plans for shit to do afterwards and long, long, long into the night.

>picking up his book with another short scoff, he shrugged his shoulders

You need to make a fuckin' appointment if you ever want to catch Lance on his own.

Unless you're Zach, apparently, and you can just force your way into any social situation without even an ounce of shame...

>Bram tried to bury himself behind his book again

Like I said. It's fine. He's got his 'roided out social life to think of; he's not attached at the hip to me. Or Janice.

So, it's fine. Not gonna try and interrupt him. I actually have a sense of self-awareness.

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563278

File: 1596767377748.jpg (34.07 KB, 414x424, 3059ee700ba1da2c31bc11ad1a1d01…)

>>41563277
>yep, it was very evident now that Bram was miffed about all of this
>so much so that dressing down Zach wasn't really gonna cut it
>he'd have to try and be more supportive and build Bram up a bit more
>so Danny shifted around on his own bed so he was fully facing Bram, speaking now in a more empathetic tone

Look, Bram, ya know he cares about ya. He's not doin' this ta hurt ya or anythaing. He jus' can't say no ta people. Someone could run up ta him an' ask fer him ta donate his blood an' he'd be rollin' up his sleeve before they even finished speakin'.

Ah know that as soon as he realizes that ya haven't hung out in a whaile he'll come bargin' through th' door an' be laike...

>he paused, then tilted his head and tried his best Lance impersonation


"Aw man, I'm so sorry man! I didn't mean to neglect you like this! C'mon, we're gonna go to the movies, and I'll completely not realize how good a chance this is for you to hold my hand or cuddle up to me or whatever!"

>the impression needed some work, honestly

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563279

File: 1596767962083.png (100.32 KB, 282x398, you bitch.png)

>>41563278
>Bram slowly glanced over to Danny at his attempt at a Lance impression
>that would have normally been at least amusing in its own right, if Bram wasn't in such a poor mood, which he so totally wasn't
I know he's not doing this on purpose, or trying to distance himself from me, or anything stupid like that, yeah?

Like I said, Lance is Lance. He has more friends to worry about than me.

Sometimes his schedule doesn't match my schedule. Simple, yeah?

>he focused back on his book, but only for a second

I'm thankful for your attempts at cheering me up, but they're unnecessary.

At the risk of repeating myself: it's fi-!
>cough!
>Bram flinched at the sudden cough, his body not enjoying the slight raise in volume his voice had taken
...it's fine.
>turning his head to Danny, he gave him a flat stare
Also, whatever weird fanfiction you've got written down in your head about me and him? Better keep that in there, yeah?

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563280

File: 1596768647899.jpg (70.44 KB, 544x646, kurapika_chibi_by_piyoooo13-d4…)

>>41563279
>Danny cleared his throat after a moment, as if to remedy it after his poor attempt to mimic Lance
>then he spoke in his usual Southern twang, with a sly tone to this time

C'mon Bram, Ah ain't blaind. Ah know ya've had an interest in Lance fer a whaile, most people at least have an inklin'.

Ah'm just hopin' Ah can help nudge ya in that direction. Hell, Ah would've traied ta set somethin' up fer th' both o' ya mahself, but Ah had a feelin' ya would've arranged mah murder if Ah had.

But Ah can still be supportive in othah ways, can't Ah?

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563281

File: 1596769208538.png (150.26 KB, 450x444, blushing furiously.png)

>>41563280
>"Ah know ya've had an interest in Lance fer a whaile..."
-!!
>Bram flinched hard, the paleness of his face already being replaced by a soft pink hue
Wh-Wh-What are you talking about!?
>his voice grew rougher and hoarse, a clear sign that he was very nervous
S-Seriously, Danny, wh-where do you come up with this stuff, yeah!?
>he rolled on his bed, turning to face the wall and away from Danny as he buried his face back in his book
T-Tcheh! A-As if I'd ever f-feel that way about Lance! G-Get real, yeah!?

L-Lance is a nice dude, a-and a great friend sure, b-but that's all, yeah!? Q-Quit being ridiculous!

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563282

File: 1596770031847.jpg (125.14 KB, 1280x720, Hunter X Hunter - 49 - Large 1…)

>>41563281

.....

>Danny was left to stare at Bram for a moment, briefly stunned by the display

>besides the fact that it was honestly pretty cute, he couldn't believe that Bram was this lacking in self-awareness
>did he seriously think he could fool him?

>there was a short gurgling sound as Danny's lower half shifted into a watery state

>which he then used to slide off of his bed, slide across the room to Bram's side, and stop just at his bed, leaning on the mattress to stare disbelievingly at him

...Bram?

Even if Ah wasn't aware of that, you've been actin' so mopey over him that Ah'd have ta eithah be totally oblivious or give no fucks whatsoevah ta not realaize what's goin' on.

Hell, Ah was there when ya first showed us how ya looked without yer make-up, raigh'? You were practically meltin' in Lance's arms then, remembah?

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563285

File: 1596840076258.png (172.17 KB, 522x565, I only read it for the article…)

>>41563282
>thwack!
>Bram turned around as quickly as he could to smack Danny right on his face with the book he was reading
>which didn't really hurt much at all, but it was still pretty rude
Th-Th-That was completely different! I-It's got nothing to do with a-anything!

Lance is just c-comfortable! That's it!

He's-- I-- Th-That's--

>with a loud groan, Bram rolled onto his stomach
>and buried his face into his pillow with a strange squeaky noise leaving his throat
>he kept his face there for a few seconds before finally lifting it, grumbling at Danny with a very pouting look on his face
I-I bet you're loving this, yeah? This is just payback for learning your s-secret fling, yeah!?

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563286

File: 1596842621177.jpg (124.6 KB, 1280x720, Kurapika_scarlet_eyes.jpg)

>>41563285
>surprisingly, Danny didn't turn his head into water so the book would slip right through, letting it smack somewhat pitifully against his forehead
>he kept up his disbelieving look, at least until Bram went to making odd noises into his pillow, shifting to something more sympathetic
>and then into panic when Bram mentioned his "secret fling", leading to him quickly glancing to the door before looking back at him with a forced smile

Oh come on Bram! Whaddya take me for? D'ya really think Ah'd try ta get revenge fer that?

Why would Ah try'n upset th' only othah person who knows about somethin' very important ta me an' apparently can't keep quiet about it?

>that last bit was said as he suddenly flashed a rather menacing stare at his roommate, somehow still while keeping up that smile

>apparently even talking about it behind closed doors was too risky in his eyes

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563287

File: 1596843927908.png (72.34 KB, 290x416, you disgust me.png)

>>41563286
>normally, Danny's strangely menacing look was enough to get Bram to shut up
>but he was feeling too proud and confrontational right now to properly register it
Oh f-for fuck's sake, we're in our room!

No one's going to b-burst through the door right as I talk about how you're fucking one of the teachers!

>he snarled back at Danny, clearly not sharing his sentiments on the risk factor
>pushing himself onto his knees, he shot a leer back at him
And to answer your q-question? Yes. I do think so!
>then let himself drop back into the pillow, burying his bright red face into it again

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563288

File: 1596844818151.jpg (64.42 KB, 958x680, 096a272882449e7483f3485ca6f0c7…)

>>41563287
>Danny clearly wasn't about to dismiss the idea that someone was going to burst into the room at any moment, or that someone was listening in or anything
>but that was beside the point, as Bram was still in a mood about this whole thing and he had to deal with that
>so he shook his head lightly and let out an exhale, before trying to steer the conversation again

Anyway...

What's th' big deal about it anyway? Ya've got a thing fer Lance, so why not pursue it?

Jus' work up th' courage ya got, go tell him how ya feel, an' see what happens! Ah know it's a cliche ta say, but it's still true!

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563289

File: 1596845614956.png (118.85 KB, 377x444, stop yelling.png)

>>41563288
>Bram let out a lengthy groan into the pillow as Danny kept pushing the subject
>he lifted his head up again, answering very plainly:
Because Lance isn't gay. That much is kinda obvious, yeah?
>he flinched, his face growing redder as he realized he pretty much just admitted it
>well, no point in trying to be coy about it any further
...wh-what's the point in telling him i-if I already know nothing c-can come of it?

It'd just make things between us weird a-and tense, and I don't want that...

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563290

File: 1596846566243.jpg (52.36 KB, 818x677, 0e6a800ed723e5d07a7497223d3db1…)

>>41563289

Do ya know that ya know?

>Danny paused after he said that, then shook his head again


That was dumb, Ah'm sorry.

Mah point is how can ya really be sure he wouldn't be interested? Ah know he's as much of a jock as one can be, but he maight've at least thought about it, y'know?

>by this point Danny had totally reformed into flesh and blood and was now sitting on the edge of the bed to talk to Bram


An' besaides, even if he ain't, it's still Lance. He ain't gonna hold it against ya fer feelin' th' way ya do.

...Ah mean, you'll still feel awkward but that's about it.

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563291

File: 1596849048874.png (131.07 KB, 403x300, hear my heart.png)

>>41563290
Lance has never once sh-shown any interest in guys.
>Bram bluntly answered
Just because I've never asked d-doesn't mean I can't be reasonably certain, yeah?
>he moved to bury his face in the pillow again, but sighed instead
>pushing himself up slowly, he knelt on the bed to look at Danny
L-Look... it's fine, yeah? I-I mean it this time.

S-Sure, yes, I have a...d-dumb crush on one of the first friends I-I've ever made, b-but that's...that's all it really is.

I've made my peace with it. I-I don't ever expect Lance to feel the same way, b-but that's OK.

He doesn't have to... I-I'm happy just being his friend, a-and I don't-...I don't want to risk messing up what we do have.

I-I appreciate what you're trying to do, b-but... everything's fine... it's not a problem, o-or anything...

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563293

File: 1596854959038.jpg (90.18 KB, 736x889, 8e7b53db54c682af551e0ad31291de…)

>>41563291
>Danny looked a little uncertain as Bram tried to more calmly refute any need to pursue something with Lance
>sure, quite honestly, the odds of something happening were low, especially since Lance seemed straight as an arrow
>so it might've been better to drop this and move on
>but Danny didn't like the idea of just giving up like that, especially considering his own experiences in this sort of situation
>so it nagged at him even as he tried to respect Bram's wishes, which led to him still not totally letting it go

...if yer absolutely, totally sure, then alraigh'...

But...if ya end up changing' yer maind or reconsiderin', jus' tell me, OK? Ah'll do whatevah Ah can ta help ya.

>he paused, then couldn't help but grin a bit


Or jus' help with whoevah else catches yer eye!

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563294

File: 1596856443469.png (73.4 KB, 204x349, smiling because youre happy.pn…)

>>41563293
>Bram blinked, not quite expecting Danny to sound so... heartfelt
>but he managed an honest smile back at him
Thanks, Danny...
>with a heavy sigh, he let himself drop back down onto the bed
>then added with a more teasing tone:
I don't suppose you have some leftover magic you used on Charleston you could borrow, yeah?

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563295

File: 1596905420161.jpg (54.75 KB, 364x364, AuevDIZd.jpg)

>>41563294
>Danny was glad to see Bram's spirits back up, even if he wished they could do something more about this whole deal with Lance
>but if that was gonna be it for now, so be it
>so at Bram's remark about lending some of his "magic", he couldn't help but grin a bit more widely

Weeeeeell, Ah can't make any promises! Mah special techniques are accustomed ta mahself an' Char-erm, Ms. Charleston.

>he cleared his throat slightly, not sure if it was a good idea to be too familiar with Charlotte when talking to someone else, and pressed on


Buuuut, Ah've found that spontaneity has worked wondahs fer me!

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563297

File: 1596926461802.png (65.51 KB, 255x347, not so sure about that.png)

>>41563295
>"Buuuut, Ah've found that spontaneity has worked wondahs fer me!"
>Bram let out a quiet hum at that
...I kinda envy you for that, to be honest...
>he let slip with a sigh
I don't think I can be spontaneous.

It's in my nature to overthink things.

Just... doing something without planning it out first? That scares the shit out of me.

>he frowned slightly, and shrugged his shoulders

Not really sure where I got it from.

Pam's the queen of not giving a single thought; Sam likes to think he's cautious, but he's really not; and mom's... well, she's mom...
>a pause, and another shrug
Maybe having bones made out of water biscuits forced me to be more careful about every aspect of my life, yeah?

So there you go; something I'll admit you have that's above me... but I'll deny ever saying this if you brag about it to Janice or something.

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563298

File: 1596929318103.jpg (377.35 KB, 801x658, Kurapika.full.1154096.jpg)

>>41563297
>Danny wasn't all that surprised to hear that Bram was less spontaneous than him, all things considered
>although him going a bit further into why he was like that did make Danny feel a twinge of guilt for bringing it up in the first place
>obviously Bram couldn't just get up and go everywhere or do everything he could do, so implying he should was inconsiderate of him
>though he didn't really dwell on his faux pas, instead wearing a look of mock hurt on his face, gasping lightly as he placed a hand on his chest

Bram, ya wound me! Ah wouldn't tease ya fer that! Ah'd focus on yer game streamer girl outfit!

>rather than elaborate on that (as much as he'd like to comment on how Bram's so eager to wear striped knee-high socks) Danny instead hummed and tried to think of an alternative solution


OK, maybe bein' spontaneous isn't th' best way ta put it...you can still think of stuff an' plan it out, ya jus'...surpraise the othah person!

I mean, if ya decide ta jus' show up at a person's front door in nothin' but yer birthday suit, that still requires some plannin' on yer part.

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563300

File: 1596933274314.png (48.49 KB, 174x286, obvious judgment.png)

>>41563298
>"Ah'd focus on yer game streamer girl outfit!"
>Bram gave Danny a flat look, but surprisingly let the comment slide
>he could've easily poked back by pointing out how many words Danny went through just to get that point across
>or point out how he sure as hell never complained about his outfits when he would try them on
>but he'd just let Danny have that one to repay for the book-to-the-face from earlier
>"...if ya decide ta jus' show up at a person's front door in nothin' but yet birthday suit..."
...

Please tell me that's not what you did.
>he very bluntly answered, but he could kinda understand the point of what Danny was saying
>even if his example was very extreme, and... a bit troublesome, Sam would most certainly say
...you really think surprising people is the best foot forward?

I mean... let's assume I put this big elaborate thing together, and just get shot down in the end, yeah?

Won't that just be a lot of wasted time and effort just to make a clown of myself?

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563301

File: 1596934065241.jpg (41.5 KB, 512x512, 0bdf71fb345bfbfed051da39a1aea5…)

>>41563300
>Danny had to admit that he was going a bit fast for this whole concept to work
>he wouldn't do something that extreme on the first go, that'd come later
>as Charlotte could attest to

Alraigh', bad example...

Ah suppose fer th' first attempt ya wanna start with somethin' simpler an' work yer way up ta surpraise nudity...

>the fact that he was stuck on that probably said more about him than he'd ever openly admit

>he looked to Bram with a more inquisitive look, realizing he needed more input

What's yer go-to fer a gift? Laike, in a scenario laike this?

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563302

File: 1596934512384.png (101.81 KB, 326x323, did not expect that.png)

>>41563301
>Bram seemed to take his time to answer that question
>...maybe a bit more time that may have been normal
>he was just left silent for a while, the thoughts in his brain left to toil at a pretty simple question
...

...

Well, my brother always told me that trying to give a present to your crush is "a form of unconscious emotional manipulation".

I've... never given it much thought, to be honest...

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563303

File: 1596935067086.jpg (56.02 KB, 1280x720, Kurapika_ep_3.jpg)

>>41563302

.....

>Danny was likewise left staring at Bram in disbelief after he gave his answer

>so much disbelief that he had a hard time responding for a bit longer

.....

>until he blinked, and then said matter-of-factly


Ya know, the more Ah hear about yer brother, th' more Ah wonder how ya got a propah education.

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563304

File: 1596935429722.png (27.82 KB, 130x152, you talk too much.png)

>>41563303
Mom managed to curb some of his more... extreme episodes.
>Bram answered with a slight frown
Sam apparently did want me to be home schooled to save money, but Mom wanted me to go to a proper school and make friends and stuff...

D-Didn't quite work out that way, since nobody wanted to be friends with the kid who barfed out a g-galon of blood on his desk, but... the thought counts, yeah?

>he shifted a bit to get more comfortable in his bed

...y'know, come to think of it... you don't speak a whole lot about yourself.

I feel like I talk a lot about my family, but I never really hear you talk about yours...

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563305

File: 1596936493163.jpg (93.14 KB, 638x476, Kurapica-kurapika-31740135-638…)

>>41563304
>Danny's expression shifted only slightly at Bram's remark about his family
>whether or not Bram actually noticed that would be up to him, as Danny now seemed to look slightly unhappy at the change in subject
>but it wouldn't be for long, as he just shrugged and shifted on Bram's bed, looking across the room as he answered

They're pretty much how ya'd expect rich people t' act. Aloof, uninterested, givin' only th' most barebones attempts at parentin' an' leavin' th' rest ta th' hired help.

Not much else t' say besaides that.

>a lie

>a pretty bold lie
>but one Danny was unfortunately used to giving

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563306

File: 1596940241180.png (57.18 KB, 361x229, looking up at you.png)

>>41563305
...right... sorry.
>Bram's answer was short
>lie or not, Bram seemed to take the hint pretty quickly
>he didn't want to talk about it, and Bram wasn't going to push that
...

So... candy?
>he just continued the previous conversation like nothing else happened
Is that a good gift?

Or is that a Valentine's Day-exclusive thing?

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563308

File: 1596942166541.jpg (85.39 KB, 600x796, hxh___kurapika_by_mono_land-d5…)

>>41563306
>Danny hummed, quietly glad that Bram let it go, and opted to mull over his suggestion instead

Hmm...if ya think it fits with who yer goin' fer, it's not a bad ahdea.

Ya don't wanna go overboard with it, though, what with it not bein' healthy an' all...

>he hummed a bit more in thought, then his eyes lit up and he looked at Bram with a curious expression


How good a cook are ya? Home-made treats are really good fer communicatin' feelin's!

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563309

File: 1596945924822.png (27.82 KB, 130x152, you talk too much.png)

>>41563308
>Bram wasn't quite sure why he was still on this topic
>it's not like he actually planned or expected to use this in the near future
>but he also didn't exactly have anything better to do than talk relationship advice with the only guy he knew to be in an actual relationship
>come to think of it, as flirty as Lance was with everything with boobs, had he ever been in an actual relationship?
...

I think I'm a decent cook, but I'm much better at just creating food out of my body.
>he bluntly answered
J likes the dog treats I make for him, at least...
>he hummed, trying to parse what he was being told
Home-made treats that aren't too harmful to one's health, yeah...?

Would an apple pie be too much?

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563316

File: 1596981985357.jpg (86.92 KB, 583x791, 739e66576c4145b1fa590e667ab661…)

>>41563309

<"Well as long as he doesn't tell them that's where the food came from..."


>at Bram's suggestion about using an apple pie, Danny was initially a bit amused by the idea

>but quickly figured out a way to make it work

Well, it maight be, but it's all in th' execution, ya undahstand!

In this case ya gotta be a bit coy about it. Laike:

>he then put on a slightly exaggerated woeful expression, clasping his hands together and looking upwards, as if talking to this hypothetical love interest directly


"Oh, how downraight silly of me! Ah made this whole apple paie but Ah jus' can't eat th' whole thing alone! If only there was someone who would share it with me!"

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563317

File: 1597006654537.png (69.1 KB, 187x429, silent judgment.png)

>>41563316
>Bram slowly blinked, looking like he was paying attention to everything Danny said
...

W-Why would I bake a pie and be surprised I can't eat it all by myself?

Shouldn't that be pretty obvious during the baking process?

...besides, I can eat a whole pie by myself. Just have to take it slowly. It'd be a pretty bold lie to say otherwise, yeah?

>tilting his head slightly with a light hum, he crossed his arms as he was a bit confused

Is being coy that important...?

I guess if it helps make you look less intimidating, yeah...?

Sam always talked about... the importance of being, like... respectful towards a woman, and humble your inherent toxic masculine desires and biases...

He never really explained how, though...

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563320

File: 1597009650507.jpg (90.18 KB, 736x889, 8e7b53db54c682af551e0ad31291de…)

>>41563317
>once again, Danny had to process just how badly Sam had screwed with Bram's brain

<"That guy either needs therapy or to get laid. Possibly both."


>but rather than voice that, he opted to focus more on Bram's confusion over his suggestion


Th' whole aidea is ta get th' othah person ta let their guard down an' know they can relax around ya. Ah mean, hell, that's th' same aidea with jus' makin' a friend. Th' only difference is that they know raight away ya want somethin' romantic.

An' as fer th' apple paie scenario, Ah know ya can eat a whole one, you know you can eat a whole one, an' they maight very well know that too. But, if ya exaggerate what yer sayin' jus' enough, they'll know that yer jus' kiddin' around. Which, again, will get 'em to relax an' maybe wanna hang out with ya.

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563321

File: 1597011380407.png (105.41 KB, 309x417, what do you need.png)

>>41563320
>when Danny put it that way, it almost managed to get the Brain Sams to calm down a bit
>he couldn't say that what Danny was explaining didn't make sense
>it made pretty good sense, really; he thought back to when he first met Lance and Janice, and much of that interaction was them just joking around to try and break through any awkwardness or tension
>...well, he did that, anyway
I-I see...

It's not very different from when trying to make a sale then either, yeah?

You want to show your customer you're trustworthy so they won't instantly assume you're trying to scam them...

I can see that applying here too, yeah? You don't want someone to think you've got any bad intentions, so you try and get them comfortable with you from the onset...

>he hummed, taking a moment to think

S-So... spontaneity, show yourself as nonthreatening, gifts as props... anything else?

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563322

File: 1597013081717.jpg (41.5 KB, 512x512, 0bdf71fb345bfbfed051da39a1aea5…)

>>41563321
>Danny tensed up just a little bit at the comparison to a business, left to think about his recent endeavor with the "dank weed"

U-Uh, Ah guess that's one way ta look at it...

<"Maybe I'm worse at this than I thought..."


But yeah, that about covahs it...aside th' obvious, Ah guess...

>he frowned slightly, trying to think of anything else that might be pertinent information for this


That'll get ya in th' door, but aftah that ya gotta do what comes naturally t' ya. Ya can't build yerself up as somethin' yer not, an' ya gotta pay attention ta what th' othah person is receptive ta t' see if yer really a good match.

As cliche as it is, if ya try an' act too outta character, they'll eithah see raight through it, or expect th' same from ya an' be upset when it falls apart. So ya do gotta be yerself.

Bramley Braze!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563324

File: 1597016602383.png (104.92 KB, 329x402, gerbil.png)

>>41563322
>Bram slowly nodded his head, finding that piece of advice pretty obvious
Makes sense.

I doubt lies make for a very healthy and long lasting relationship, yeah?

>he leaned back on his pillow, making himself comfortable again

Well, thanks for the advice. I'm willing to trust you, since you're the only person I know who's actually in a relationship right now...

Guess those southern charms of yours aren't just for show; they get results too, yeah?

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563325

File: 1597018828985.jpg (278.27 KB, 586x684, Kurapika.full.1737534.jpg)

>>41563324
>Danny ended up grinning again as Bram seemed in better spirits now that he dispensed as much advice as he could on the subject matter

Weeeeeeell, Ah don't mean ta brag, but they certainly gave me a leg up~

>which, considering Charlotte was as withdrawn as she was, certainly made a big difference


But don't sell yerself short, Ah'm sure you can get anyone ya maight have yer eye on! Won't know until ya try!

>he did still want to at least nudge Bram into taking a chance on Lance

>as unlikely as it would be to actually happen, if Bram didn't try then he'd never get used to rejection or failure
>which would just make it all the harder to actually get anywhere with a significant other

Winnie D. Woah!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563348

File: 1597172128548.jpg (53.54 KB, 640x360, please work.jpg)

>today was not a day like any other for one Winnie Diana Woah
>she found herself in clothes unfamiliar to her, in a setting even more unfamiliar
>the cathedral of exercise and fitness wasn't a place someone like her was seen in very often
>a large section of her brain was telling her she looks ridiculous in her workout gear, and that she'd only be making a fool out of herself, and that nothing would ever, ever, ever change about her body so what's the use of even trying
>luckily, another large part of her brain was yelling at her that turning around and running away would just be wasting Mako's time and efforts
>and if there was one thing stronger than Winnie's self-loathing, it was her terror at disappointing other people!

>even though her arms really hurt right now, and the comfort of a bed was sounding quite wonderful right now

>Winnie was not in good shape, that much was obvious from a mere glance at her
>but she tried her best, lifting up the (small) weights, and working up a good sweat in the process
>but boy oh boy, her arms felt like they were ready to pop off from her shoulders right now how much longer did this have to go

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563349

>>41563348

>fortunately for Winnie, Mako had a knack for finding cozy little hole-in-the-wall workout spots around campus where they would be free to exercise without threat of watching, judging eyes

>...unfortunately for Winnie, Mako was a very intense personal trainer.

COME ON! KEEP GOING! FIVE MORE REPS! YOU CAN DO THIS! YOU’RE ALMOST THERE! NO GIVING UP NOW! GO! GO! GO!

>...sure, he’d been nothing but encouraging and positive the whole time

>but did he have to yell so much?

Winnie D. Woah!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563350

File: 1597173950825.jpg (25.3 KB, 218x259, are you kidding.jpg)

>>41563349
>Winnie let out a strange, shrill squeak as her brain was being fed two clashing pieces of information at once
>on one hand, Mako was encouraging her to do her best and push it to the limit and eye of the tiger all those other 80's workout songs Wanda loves
>but on the other hand, waaah he's shouting is he angry at her is she doing things wrong what even is a rep aaaaah AAAAAAAH!!
>her body was pushing itself and resuming the motions purely out of survival instinct by this point
>lifting the weights faster and faster just hoping to hear the word "stop" soon

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563351

>>41563350

>hell yeah, that’s the kind of energy that Mako wanted to see! (even if he was mistaking the look of terror on Winnie’s face for intense focus, but whatever)

>he only started to notice that something was amiss when Winnie blew straight past her goal… and kept going
>at first he assumed that it was just her getting enthusiastic, but… he asked for five reps, not fifteen…

Uh, Winnie? Winnie, you’re- you’re already- you’re done. Y-you can-

>he hestitantly reached out to gently grab Winnie’s arm mid-curl


You can stop now? Sorry? Are you okay?? Do you need some water?

Winnie D. Woah!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563352

File: 1597175590237.jpg (44.68 KB, 480x480, Ill cut you.jpg)

>>41563351
>feeling the hand wrap around her arm, Winnie came to a full stop with a loud exhale
>she slumped forward, taking in big gulps of air as her arms sagged down
Gweh-! Huff... huff... I-I'm... puff... huff... fine... heeuff... huff... little... ghuff... little bit... bit o' water blease... huff... puff...
>she stumbled, nearly falling over due to the weights still in her hands
>her body felt like it was on fire... until it suddenly didn't
>all of a sudden, a very cold chill forced its way into the secluded little nook and crawled all the way up Winnie's body
>which only meant one thing:
O-Oh... huff... h-hi, A-Abbbbb-...bwuuuh...
>Winnie wobbled, trying to smile at the ominous figure nearby

>the oppressive shadow of one Abigail Addams loomed harshly over Winnie and Mako

>half hidden behind the corner and the darkness that followed her, the eerie empty eyes beneath a shower of black hair stared intensely at the two, yet somehow staring right through them
Winnie. Your flabs are shivering faster zan usual. Are you. Sick, perhaps?

Huff... huff... n-no, no! I-I'm buhr-...perfectly fine!
>she finally managed that smile for her friend
I-I'm just-... huff... working out! G-Getting-...Getting-...oh, poodles... huff... puff...

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563353

>>41563352

>Mako nodded and grabbed the mercifully cold bottle of water at his side, handing it to Winnie

>when he spoke again, his voice came out in a more typically Mako-y soft tone

You, um. You did a really good job. Just rest for a couple minutes and we’ll go to the next think, o-

>guh

-kkgh?!
>what was that sudden feeling of terror running up his spine? A different kind from the usual sudden terror he felt whenever around people?
>he really, really didn’t want to turn around
>but when he heard Winnie talking to whatever the hell was about to probably kill them both like it was no big deal, he couldn’t help but feel just a little bit curious
>so he slowly turned his head to meet Abby’s gaze…
>and immediately let out a girlish, high-pitched squeak of fear and shrunk in on himself, completely petrified

Winnie D. Woah!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563355

File: 1597182156267.jpg (15.21 KB, 208x231, listen.jpg)

>>41563353
>Winnie chugged the ice cold water without a second thought, not waiting an extra second

>Abby fully emerged from the corner, approaching the two with a curious look on her face

I see. But is zis not a strange place to partake. In phyzical exercise, ze great outdoors provide much more freedom of movement.

E-Eh? O-Outside?
>Winnie blinked
You think so...?

Nature is ze great healer. As well as ze expert killer. Ze strong thrive amidst its dangerous whims, and ze weak must turn strong.
>she reached forward, a finger poking Winnie on the chest
Necessity. It is ze energy zat drives humanity. To achieve ze impossible.

H-Huh...
>Winnie just looked confused
>she looked at Mako
What do you think, Mako...? W-Would exercising outside be-ah!
>but she quickly interrupted herself
Oh! Right!
>meekly flailing an arm, she quickly proceeded to introduce the two strangers
A-Abby, this is Mako! H-He's helping me with the work out! A-And Mako, this is Abby! She's a friend of mine!

>Abby slowly turned her head to face Mako without a word

>just the sight of her pupils shrinking for unknowable reasons as she stared at the frightened boy

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563356

>>41563355

>this was an… awkward position for Mako

>if Abby was Winnie’s friend, than surely he should be nice to her too, right?
>but when he looked at Abby, he didn’t just feel normal-anxiety-scared; he felt like a billion different childhood nightmares were all rushing back into his mind at once especially the ones from that brief phase where he thought that owls ate people, for some reason
>...still, Mako had spent his entire life so far living with constant unexplained fear, and he had developed a talent for forcing himself to talk in spite of it
>so he looked back at Abby, unable to manage actual eye contact, put on an extremely forced smile, and introduced himself in a voice only slightly less high pitched than when he was actually a girl

H-hhhii, Abby. I’m- my name’s- my name’s M-mako.

<...wait, she already said that.


>he suddenly turned away from Abby before her withering gaze would bring him to tears, turning back over to Winnie


Uh, we- we can, um, we can go outside if- if you want!

Winnie D. Woah!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563357

File: 1597187393636.jpg (32.17 KB, 256x360, I didnt do it.jpg)

>>41563356
W-Well, if Abby thinks it's best...
>she looked over at her friend

>who still had her eyes firmly set on Mako

>more specifically, the moth that had landed on his shoulder
>when it ended up flying away, she followed it for a bit, but then refocused on the conversation at hand
I am glad you agree. Fear not, for I know of many dark. Silent. Mysterious spots in which to offer you privazy.
>she then started... not necessarily walking, more like gliding backwards
Follow me...

---

>the day outside was a fine Summer-y day; a perfectly good day to be outside in

>not that they'd be witnessing the Sun any time soon, as deep into the woods that surrounded the Magical Studies building, the foliage grew with such intensity it could block out the rays of sunlight with ease
Zis is where I usually. Come to when I wish to strain my body.
>Abby approached the large tree in the center of the clearing, placing a hand over it
Hello, Henrietta. Are you resting peacefully?
>she leaned forward, pressing an hear on the tree trunk
...I thought so.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563358

>>41563357

>okay, now Mako was at least kinda sure he was going to die.

>but, well, Winnie seemed to be okay with this, so… at least she probably wasn’t going to die!
>...that wasn’t a very reassuring thought, but that was about the best Mako could manage right now as they ventured into the dark and spooky woods that Abby frankly seemed right at home in

>”Hello, Henrietta. Are you resting peacefully?”


>for just a moment, that actually interrupted the fear

>instead, Mako just glanced down at Winnie with a confused expression, silently asking if she was actually talking to trees
>but, whatever, that wasn’t important
>he was here because he promised to help Winnie exercise, and blind terror or no, Mako Chorus was a man of his word!

...um, okay, so… wh-what kinda stuff do you do out here?

Winnie D. Woah!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563359

File: 1597192290074.jpg (20.6 KB, 193x352, Im here too.jpg)

>>41563358
>if Mako had turned to Winnie for answers, all he'd receive back a slight shrug, and a smile that said "Abby's just like that; don't worry too about it"
>although Winnie couldn't think of any instances of Abby talking to trees before
>maybe this one was special somehow?

>Abby slowly straightened up, turning around to face Mako and Winnie once more

>but in her hands, she was now somehow carrying an axe
I chop.
>her answered was simple, as she lifted the axe well above her head
>and swung it down just to demonstrate what she meant
Ze magic building often requires kindle for ze flames. I help zem gazer ze necessary material.
>she slowly turned again, wandering around the tree behind her
>not very far was a large pile of wood that required chopping
It is a simple. Yet rewarding job, ze staff is quite generous when repaying your work.
>she looked back at the two again
Your body complains much at ze start. But it learns. Zey always learn.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563360

>>41563359

>thaaaaaaaat WAS AN AXE OKAY FIGHT OR FLIGHT TIME

>unfortunately, Mako’s fight or flight reflex was more of a stand-frozen-in-deer-in-headlights-horror or flight reflex
>but, it’s just as well – panicking now would just ruin this whole evening, especially when Abby… still hadn’t actually done anything, and had a perfectly reasonable explanation for why she had the axe.
>not so much of an explanation on the how she had the axe, but whatever
>by now, Mako was just starting to feel a little more confused than scared (but still definitely pretty scared)
>Abby had yet to do anything remotely malicious, but she was just kinda… she seemed to have an inexplicable way of doing everything she did in the most ominous manner possible?
>...he still felt like he was going to cry whenever he looked at her though
>and he still wasn’t getting anywhere near her while she was holding the axe

U-uh, I mean- that’s- not a bad workout, but… that’s, it’s kinda intense for Winnie right now, e-especially since we already just did arms… I was… actually sort of planning on something, like, legs… or cardio… or something?

<Something that doesn’t involve sharp things?

Winnie D. Woah!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563375

File: 1597266236215.jpg (55.68 KB, 480x480, I dont know.jpg)

>>41563360
>Abby kept her unblinking stare on Mako for an uncomfortable amount of time
>but slowly she seemed to consider his words, stabbing the axe down on the tree stump to leave it there
I see.
>she took a moment to consider other options
Zen perhaps we could squeeze ze sweating pumpkins in ze greenhouse.
>reaching down with her hands, she patted her lap
Much like ze sheep. Requires being sheared, so too do ze pumpkins need ze excess joo-eese to be squeeze out from zem.

Utilizing ze legs is ze most effective way of. Achieving ze desired effective.

Hold ze pumpkin well between your thighs. And be careful not to harm it. Before its innards cover you with a mighty boom.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563376

>>41563375

>again, for a few moments, Mako was more confused than afraid

>he wasn’t really super knowledgeable about the stuff that went on in the magic studies department (even if he’d always been a little curious to know more), but everything that Abby was describing felt like kinda… out-there Harry Potter-ass stuff.
>was magic actually like that?
>...wait, shit, was Harry Potter a true story? Was that all based- oh, wait, right. Confused terror, almost forgot.

Uhh, s-sssure?
>Mako was pretty quick to try to dodge Abby’s eye contact, again focusing his attention back on Winnie
You up for… whatever that is, I guess?

Winnie D. Woah!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563377

File: 1597277484111.jpg (36.85 KB, 286x389, tell me your story.jpg)

>>41563376
>Winnie blinked, jolting a bit as the baton of choice was thrown to her
>she wasn't quite sure what Abby was talking about, but she wasn't going to say no to her friend!
U-Uhh... s-s-sure! I can give it a try!
>she smiled a bit nervously
And it'd be helping the school, right? S-Sounds like a win-win to me!

I suppose.
>was all Abby offered before she turned, and began walking again
>simply expecting the others to start following her on the way to the magic building

>the Magical Studies greenhouse wasn't nearly as big and impressive as the main one that the school had, but it made up for it by housing the strangest plant life known and unknown to Man

>past the sleeping mandrakes, crossing the chilling frostberries, and just a few steps down from the gunanas, stood the harvested sweating pumpkins
>resembling ordinary pumpkins but green in coloration, the fruit gained its name due to the ability to literally squeeze the juice right out of it
>this unique juice was an uncommon but quite sought after ingredient in potions, medicine, or simple cold tasty beverages
>and the fruit itself could then be enjoyed as well on its own, sliced or diced to one's pleasure

>Abby quietly grabbed two pumpkins beneath her arms, gliding over to the seats nearby

>the wooden seat stood right above an ordinary bucket, and had a slight indentation inwards
>having already changed into her pumpkin-squeezing gear, Abby took her seat and placed the pumpkin firmly between her legs
Ze trick is to watch for ze top of. Ze pumpkin.
>she explained, placing her hands on top of the fruit
It is important to not let ze top grow larger zan half ze size of ze pumpkin.
>to demonstrate, Abby suddenly squeezed down on the pumpkin, the fruit squishing between her legs
>its middle was thinned down, while the top and bottom ballooned out, as if squeezing on a rubber toy
>if that rubber toy also started pouring juice out of its pores, which was collected into the bucket beneath Abby
If it grows too big. Then ze pumpkin goes boom. And ze hard work of so many people goes. To waste. Gone. Such cruel fate.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563407

>>41563377

>okay, Mako suddenly felt like he had to spend way more time hanging around the Magical Studies stuff, ‘cause this was pretty awesome

>he wasn’t super knowledgeable about plants and gardening or stuff like that, but he’d visited a couple botanical gardens and stuff with his parents as a little kid
>and frankly? This blew that shit right outta the water
>all the previous fear quickly gave way to fascination and wonder as he took in all the weird new colors and smells and sometimes noises (he was pretty sure that one of those flowers over there was talking) around him
>honestly, despite how creeped out he was by Abby, he had to thank her for getting him out of his comfort zone a little and to check this place o-kay Mako just turned back to look at Abby for the first time since entering the greenhouse and when did she change her clothes?

>he almost had half a mind to say something, but given that look that Winnie had given him earlier… he got the feeling that this is just what being around Abby was like.

>still, he watched in silent confusion as she demonstrated her weird… pumpkin… milking… thing techniques
>… magic was weird.
>still, he forced a smile and tried to find something friendly to say – if there was one thing he was more afraid of than Abby, it was being rude

Uh, it – certainly seems like a good workout!
<Even if I don’t really get why you couldn’t just do some squats or something…
You… ssseem to know a lot about this kinda… stuff. Do you, like, study in the magic building, or…?

Winnie D. Woah!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563427

File: 1597780318987.jpg (142.67 KB, 689x642, thinking.jpg)

>>41563407
>Winnie blinked, unsure of what to think about Abby's unique workout
>but at the very least, this would help the school, right?
>if Abby could get fit while helping others, then that was great, right?

You can get into ze pumpkin-squeezing clothes zere.
>Abby answered Winnie's internal question, pointing at a small shed nearby

O-Oh! O-OK! I-I guess I'll... go do that!
>Winnie quickly hurried off, heading towards the shed
>leaving Mako alone with Abby
>"Do you, like, study in the magic building, or...?"
I do not. Ze world of magic is beyond my. Understanding.
>she took out the pumpkin between her legs, as it had been squeezed for all it had and placed aside
>then picked up another one to repeat the process
I merely enjoy ze. Surroundings, zey remind me of my home and, ze forest zat surrounded it.

Ze serene threat of nature. It has always called to me. Always been zere for me. From it I was spawned, from it I shall return.


>her eyes seemed to shrink again as she focused on Mako

Do you know. What zat is like? To be drawn in, by a power above you. To a place, a home, not of walls and ceiling. But of ze uncaring natural world.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563428

File: 1597782315116.png (151.15 KB, 381x546, unbelievable.png)

>today was a dark day
>well, not literally
>the Sun was shining, the birds were cheerfully chirping outside her office, and the air was warm
>but to her, it was a dark day
>the air might as well be chilling her to the bone
>the birds singing may as well be the death song of a murder of crows
>and the Sun would be really nice if it were to suddenly collapse into a black hole, and kill everything in the solar system

>Charlotte sat at her desk, carefully rereading a letter in her hands

>even in her darkest of days, Charlotte wasn't going to hand over a resignation letter with any sort of spelling errors
>she still had some shattered remains of a reputation to uphold, even if it cost her some extra time

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563429

File: 1597784004263.jpg (27.06 KB, 400x400, 2xDa-EDZ_400x400.jpg)

>>41563428
>Danny approached Charlotte's office, trying his best to keep his composure
>he had left the matter he suspected was hanging around untouched for all this time, not wanting to poke a sleeping bear or...however that analogy went
>but he couldn't just pretend nothing was going on forever
>Charlotte clearly had something on her mind, and having met Joanne, he had his suspicions
>(not to mention Janice but that was a whole other can of worms)
>so it was time they just addressed them and hopefully got past it all

>as such, once he arrived he quickly knocked on the door to her office

>then, without waiting for an answer, opened the door and stepped in

Charlotte, Ah was wonderin'-

>he stopped mid-sentence, noticing the dark mood Charlotte appeared to be in

>really, it was impossible to miss, she looked like she wanted to curl up under the desk and fade away into nothing

...ya doin' OK there...?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563430

File: 1597784803403.png (181.65 KB, 327x512, what is it.png)

>>41563429
>Chrlotte raised her head from the letter a bit later than normal
>her expression didn't change, as usual, but when Danny spoke, she was quick to answer
Ah. Danny. Good.

You've saved me the trouble of having to seek you out.

>she gave a slight wave with her hand, just to motion he could step closer

I am doing fine, yes. I wasn't sure in what order I should tackle my affairs, but starting things out with you is just as well.
>standing up from her chair, she faced Danny with her usual stoic and business-like stance
I regret to inform you our relationship will have to come to an abrupt end.

Rest assured it has nothing to do with anything you have done, or any problems of your character.

I am simply resigning from STAR, and proceeding to leave the States in as short of time as I am able.

>she folded her letter, placing it inside an envelope

I am just about to hand over my letter of resignation to Jasmine, and after that, it will be the last time I set foot in the facility.

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563431

File: 1597787765737.jpg (63.56 KB, 794x491, Kurapika-hunter-x-hunter-30817…)

>>41563430

.....

>in the face of as abrupt a turn of events as this, there are a variety of ways one can react

>disbelief
>despair
>disregard
>disinterest
>some other "d" word
>so how was Danny going to handle this?

.....

Is this about Joanne?

>apparently, just cut the BS and get right to the heart of the matter

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563432

File: 1597789762926.png (350.46 KB, 647x553, that is not how it works.png)

>>41563431
>krrrripp!!
>the letter was torn in half immediately by Charlotte's hands
>and she was left staring, trembling before Danny in complete silence
...

...

...

...

...

...

>before her voice came out in a very unnatural tone

>the tone of of someone who wanted to scream, but had no idea how to
HhhooOOOoooowWwwwww diIIIiidd yoOou knOOOowwW?

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563433

File: 1597791104572.jpg (428.37 KB, 800x1000, Kurapika.full.1035687.jpg)

>>41563432

<"Nailed it."


>Charlotte's ability to react was obviously impaired, so the few times that she did show any sort of emotion beyond her stoic gaze were usually a treat

>here, though, it was rather...unnerving
>it was very clear how this all made her highly nervous and upset, even though her stone-faced expression
>which only served to make Danny more nervous as the weight of what was happening was sinking in

W-Well...educated guess...?

Ah mean, Ah knew somethin' was on yer maind fer a whaile now...an' then Ah happened ta meet Joanne an' hung out with her fer a bit...

An' it's pretty much impossible not ta notice th'...similarities...

>he was twiddling his thumbs a bit as he replied, trying to keep things light but knowing that wasn't going to last


...soooo...what's th' connection there...?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563434

File: 1597791636868.png (64.19 KB, 202x325, this isnt good.png)

>>41563433
>Charlotte remained as she was for a few brief seconds
>she actually just fell for the "you just told me" trick
>she wasn't sure if that hurt the most right now or not
...

...

...

>"Ah happened ta meet Joanne an' hung out with her fer a bit..."

>something incredible happened
>"An' it's pretty much impossible not ta notice th'...similarities..."
>Charlotte's eyes very noticeably widened
...

...

...

>thunk!

>Charlotte's knees landed on the floor, the woman crumbling under the height of all that stress and self-hatred and what-ifs and-
...

...
>slowly, she brought her hands up to her face
>took in several deep breaths, and lengthy exhales
>her trembling calmed down, and she removed her hands off of her face
>and slowly she looked back up at Danny, her face as impenetrable as ever
>but there was a faint tiredness lingering in her eyes as she truthfully answered:
She's-...she's my daughter.

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563435

File: 1597792746061.jpg (27.06 KB, 400x400, 2xDa-EDZ_400x400.jpg)

>>41563434

-?!

>seeing Charlotte's eyes widen was surprising enough, considering how nearly impossible it was for her face to change at all

>but her literally dropping to her knees was the real shocker, since it was clear by then that he'd hit the mark hard and it had gotten to her
>he ha already stepped forward to place his hands on her shoulders, and was about to ask if she was OK, but held back when she was clearly trying to calm herself down
>he waited until she moved her hands away to talk, and listened to what she had to say

<"she's my daughter."


...ah.

>some part of him had hoped it was something slightly less awkward

>like maybe a niece, a distant cousin, a way younger sister
>but no, it was obvious before she even said it what was going on here, this kind of reaction couldn't be based on anything else
>so the question now was, what to do with this?
>a question that Danny had no fucking idea how to answer

...does...does she know?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563436

File: 1597796082963.png (151.15 KB, 381x546, unbelievable.png)

>>41563435
>Charlotte was silent again for a long stretch of time
>she looked down at the ground, expression the same
>and could only give as an answer when she looked back at Danny:
I don't know.

I don't know anything about-...about her...

When I left her, she wasn't even a month old.

I don't know... I don't know if she even knows I exist... if her father told her about-...
>reaching up, she took her glasses off of her face, quickly rubbing her eyes
>she began trembling again, yet still kept her composure even as the tears were starting to roll down her face

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563437

File: 1597798028315.jpg (93.14 KB, 638x476, Kurapica-kurapika-31740135-638…)

>>41563436
>Danny watched as Charlotte started to break down over this, not really sure how to take this himself
>he knew that Charlotte dropped everything in her previous life and that she was far from proud of it, and he understood that sometimes people would do that
>but to leave an infant behind like that...
>if he didn't know Charlotte better he'd be outright disgusted at the notion
>but seeing how upset she was over all of it, he knew that she intensely regretted it all, and now didn't know what to do

>for the moment, all he could do was try and comfort her

>so he moved his hands to wrap his arms around her shoulders, pulling her into a gentle hug
>he still wasn't totally sure what to say, but right now, he knew this was the right call

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563438

File: 1597798577532.png (275.42 KB, 510x524, hear this.png)

>>41563437
>Charlotte slowly leaned into the hug, but her arms never moved to return it
>there were strange atonal sobs and hiccups, Charlotte very clearly not used to crying in the slightest
>and despite it, she still fought against it, preventing herself from erupting into a proper, loud cry
>she leaned on Danny's shoulder for maybe a minute or two, before slowly leaning back
>she took a deep breath, running her sleeve over her face to wipe away at the tears once more
...

...

I'm sorry, Danny.

I tried-...I tried so hard to escape my past. To forget it. To just-...To just be Charlotte, and no one else.

All this time, I've been lying to you, when I shouldn't have.

Thinking-...Thinking I could just escape all the wrongs I've made...

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563439

File: 1597800065790.jpg (90.18 KB, 736x889, 8e7b53db54c682af551e0ad31291de…)

>>41563438
>Danny kept quiet as Charlotte tried to compose herself, just letting her cry herself out as best as she could
>once she was feeling better, he watched her as she made her apology, and quickly shook his head and replied calmly

It's alraigh', Charlotte. Ah get it. Lotsa people have stuff they wish they could get away from. An' it ain't easy actually doin' it.

>he paused, as his expression changed to a more nervous one


So...can ya please not do it again?

Ah know it ain't fair o' me ta ask, but Ah'm sure we can figure out how ta deal with this if ya stay...

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563441

>>41563427

>the Abby-ss stared into Mako, and Mako stared back

>he had… basically no fucking clue what Abby was talking about, and now that he was alone with her again, that creeping feeling of dread was starting to crawl up his back again
>...maybe it had something to do with the fact that she was currently giving him a creepy goth monologue about the dangers of nature while he was surrounded by a bunch of plants that, in hindsight, could probably all kill him in various horrible ways
>still, once again, the fear of being rude beat out the fear of Abby

I-I, uh, I like… swimming. A lot. I like exploring the… bottom of… wh-whatever? Seeing what kinda stuff is down there...

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563442

File: 1597801164548.png (228.4 KB, 570x553, stop that.png)

>>41563439
>Charlotte nodded, slipping her glasses back onto her face
Yes...

You deserve to hear the truth.

That's only fair. So that's what I will give you.

>she took a deep breath

>and a long exhale
>then opened her eyes to look right at Danny
Before-...Before Charlotte Charlestone... there was Becky Bronson.

Before Becky Bronson, there was Alena Arbuckle.

And before any of those... there was Joy Torres.
>she took another breath
My real name... before I ran away from home, and began my criminal career.

...

Janice Torres is-...is my niece. I only learned this when I learned about-...about Joanne...

I thought-...I thought if one ludicrous coincidence could happen... why not another...

>she slumped forward slightly, in no way anticipating getting a double dose of family trauma dropped onto her lap

>despite knowing Janice for years now, she had never really made the connection
>after all, Torres was a very common last name (so common that she had also checked the backgrounds of other students and lab technicians with that last name, just to make sure)
>and running full background checks wasn't really something she tended to do (...until then)
...but...
>another sigh
Becky Bronson... she-...I moved to Canada years ago. Trying to start a fresh new life.

I met a wonderful man there. One who didn't mind my unique condition.

We got together. We grew close. We even discussed marriage. And before that...I got pregnant.

For the first few months, I was scared. But every now and then I felt... happy... excited... thinking about the child I'd be bringing into the world.

...but once I finally held her in my arms... I think a part of me hoped-...hoped I'd be able to smile at my own daughter...

It never happened. Every time her dad held her, he only needed to smile to get her to calm down. But I couldn't...

No matter how much I wanted to, I knew I couldn't give my own daughter a normal mother.

I grew so... so scared... thinking about what sort of horrible mother I would be... a mother who couldn't even smile at her own daughter...

What sort of life would I've given her if-...if I stayed with her... I couldn't imagine it.

So... I ran. Left my life behind for a third time. Abandoning her and the man I loved.

It was... so long ago...

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563444

File: 1597802282486.jpg (55.29 KB, 640x360, curious.jpg)

>>41563441
>Abby slowly nodded her head
Yes. Good. As expected.

Many still feel it. Ze call of ze wild.

But not all. Some have found peace. And belonging wizin ze concrete walls and metal skeletons of human civilization.

None are correct, of course. None are wrong eizer. You find your own comfort in what calls to you.

You agree, yes? Or no? Would you drag someone into ze depths with you, I wonder.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563445

>>41563444

>that was… a question? Maybe? Mako honestly wasn’t really sure what Abby was asking

>...wait, was she implying he was some sort of sea monster or something?

Uhh… y-yes? If-if they’re experienced with it and they wanted to, I guess…?

>he wasn’t really super comfortable with this line of conversation, so he decided to jump on the chance to change the topic


Ssssso, uh! Where – where’re you from? I used t’live in San Fransokyo until my dad got a job here and we had to move, so...

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563447

File: 1597807358110.jpg (15.21 KB, 208x231, listen.jpg)

>>41563445
...
>Abby stared uncomfortably long at Mako
You ask many questions.
>she finally broke the silence
>but whether that was an annoyed affirmation, or just... not
>well, that was difficult to guess
I made my appearance in zis world. In Dunwich. Papa had a job zere, but not anymore.

We travel instead. To many places. Some less known zan ozers.


>once again she'd toss the dried up pumpkin aside

>and pick up her next one to continue
Some days, I miss ze old town. Although I did not visit it very often.

A trip to town was a special occasion, you understand. Ze whole family joined in, and we would go and see ze friendly townspeople.

And zey would join in on ze special occasion, signaling our arrival with torches and. Ozer assorted tools.


>she let out a quiet, croaking sound that might have been a wistful sigh

I should visit my family zis Winter. Zere is only so long one can be deprived of zeir company, no?

But I suppose you would see your fazer quite often. If he works in ze Academy, after all.

Or perhaps... no? Is your fazer ze silent working type? It is a sad possibility.

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563448

File: 1597808287273.jpg (93.14 KB, 638x476, Kurapica-kurapika-31740135-638…)

>>41563442
>Danny listened quietly as Charlotte went into everything that she'd been holding back, leaving...a lot to process
>he knew that she had run away, he knew that she had multiple lives before this one, and there was no telling what happened in those, so he was just about prepared for anything
>although hearing that she was Janice's aunt was definitely not one of them
>yeah, there were definitely similarities between the two of them, but nowhere near as many as her and Joanne, so it was easy to just dismiss it as coincidence
>as Charlotte herself pointed out, though, why not another crazy coincidence after the first?

>while dealing with that revelation, and how this was going to make things really awkward if Janice ever caught wind of everything going on here, Charlotte continued giving him things to process

>hearing how she had started a life in Canada, fell in love and had a baby, was a rather sad tale, considering he knew how it ended
>well, he did, but he didn't know why
>and hearing that it was all due to her inability to emote was a rather painful scenario to imagine
>though it was hard for most to tell, he was certain this realization crushed her to discover, and her decision to leave must've been far harder than he could've guessed
>the more he listened to this, the more out of his depth he felt
>what could he possibly say or do to make this better?
>to help convince her that she didn't have to run away anymore?

.....

>he leaned in and hugged her again, for a moment at a loss for words

>before electing to give the only suggestion that came to mind

...Ah can't guarantee this, but...

Maybe now, if ya told her this, what ya jus' told me...Ah can't say fer sure if she'd forgive ya, but...maybe she'd undahstand...?

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563452

>>41563447

>Mako wasn’t certain if he was supposed to be feeling sympathetic when Abby said that, but he couldn’t help it

>sure, Abby was weird and kinda creepy, but it’s not like being weird and kinda creepy was a crime or anything!
>and surely she wouldn’t be in this school if she’d actually done anything to warrant the literal pitchforks-and-torches treatment, right?
>so, despite his anxiety, he stepped a little closer, awkwardly tapping his fingers together

Uh, why not… try to get your family to visit you here? If, like, if visiting the city was such a special thing, why not- y’know, show them Metropolis?

And, y-yeah, I get to talk to my dad a lot. He’s one of the teachers – Mr. Chorus? The-the big whale guy? Have you met him?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563454

File: 1597845791035.png (64.19 KB, 202x325, this isnt good.png)

>>41563448
>Charlotte didn't respond right away
>she was left silent for a few seconds, before finally:
I don't deserve her forgiveness...

But... what right do I even have... to intrude in her life like this.

>she let out a short sigh

What if-...What if she doesn't even know about me?

Her father may have remarried, and she may have been raised under the notion her maternal mother stayed with her.

I have no proof of my claims, either. Even if I were to take that step, what reason would she have to believe me.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563455

File: 1597846755559.jpg (22.85 KB, 224x411, look at this guy.jpg)

>>41563452
>"Why not- y'know, show them Metropolis?"
...

...

An interesting proposition.

>Abby answered, moving on to another pumpkin
Perhaps not a bad one. Metropolis is a big place, with many. Corners and shadows, and peculiar activities to try.

Perhaps zey would enjoy it? I do not know. But it could be fruitful to try.


>"Have you met him?"

>Abby slowly nodded her head as a response
Yes, I am aware of who you are referring to.

He was one of ze first to welcome me into ze Academy, before my well-being was put in ze care of Jotaro Kujo.

So I did not. Interact with him for very long, he seemed like a nice person however. Quite shy. But pass-ionate.

It is good you get to speak to him often. Ze bond between parent and child should be kept strong. Healthy. You never know where ze goblins might travel next, after all.

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563456

File: 1597847427447.jpg (277.05 KB, 606x640, Kurapika-Kuruta-Hunter-X-Hunte…)

>>41563454
>Danny couldn't very well refute her point
>telling Joanne about this if she didn't already know the truth would completely upend her life, and dump a whole lot on her to process
>and regardless of if she knew or not, the likelihood of Joanne forgiving her was pretty low, all told, which would just make things harder for Charlotte to take
>so it was a lose-lose situation no matter how one looked at it, and Danny really couldn't blame Charlotte for wanting to make a run for it again

...well, Ah suppose ya could jus' leave it alone. Jus'...not mention it, an' let things stay as they are...

>he sounded a bit hesitant as he suggested this, knowing that morally it wasn't the best choice, but it was the easier alternative


...would you be OK with that, though? With not knowin' how it'd turn out?

...do ya want t' try an' build a relationship with her?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563460

File: 1597880979299.png (148.3 KB, 449x543, standing here.png)

>>41563456
>"Would you be OK with that, though?"
...
>"Do ya want t' try an' build a relationship with her?"
I-...

...

I don't know.

I don't wish to force myself into her life. That much I do know.

If she is happy, if she doesn't know I exist... I can't take that away from her.

If only I could-...
>she paused
>and looked at Danny
You've met her.

Maybe- maybe you can get some answers.

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563461

File: 1597882205069.jpg (27.06 KB, 400x400, 2xDa-EDZ_400x400.jpg)

>>41563460
>Danny jolted slightly at Charlotte's suggestion, clearly not expecting it and totally unprepared for how to handle it

Y-Ya want me t' ask? How am Ah gonna do that?

>he didn't want to totally throw the idea out, but he didn't really know what else to say


Ah mean, Ah can't jus' walk up ta her an' ask "hey d'ya know if yer mom is yer real mom".

Ah'm not that charmin', Ah'm afraid.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563462

File: 1597882555002.png (350.46 KB, 647x553, that is not how it works.png)

>>41563461
Just- just try and get to know her better.
>she insisted
You don't need to be so forward.

Let the conversation naturally steer towards her family, and see how she reacts.

This isn't something that-
>she paused
>and brought up her hands to her face
...what am I doing...

Asking you to get involved in my problems...

I'm the worst...

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563463

File: 1597883209345.jpg (40.4 KB, 634x535, 841ce27cec40673a3093d2dd283e3b…)

>>41563462
>Danny's initial unease changed to a more subdued expression, less averse to the idea but still cautious
>he gently patted her shoulder, trying to recover this before she was totally dissuaded

W-Well, let's not throw it out jus' yet...

Ah can give it a try, but Ah don't really know how Ah'd bring it up. Th' only way Ah can imagine is if Ah talk about mah family, an'...

>he put on a sheepish smile at this, even though he was not very comfortable with the way this was going


Pretty sure that's one way ta ensure she won't want t' talk ta me about that. If evah again.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563465

File: 1597885618333.png (148.3 KB, 449x543, standing here.png)

>>41563463
>letting out another sigh
No, you are right.

This isn't something you should concern yourself with.

I need to simply act like an adult, and face my problems head on for once.

>closing her eyes, she took in a deep breath

I will speak to her instead, and try to pry the information out myself.

As a teacher, it'll be natural for me to be curious about her life prior to entering the Academy.

And if it turns out she's-...she's been thinking about me all these years... I will have no choice but to tell her the truth.

It's the most logical plan of action.

Danny Rogers!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563466

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>>41563465
>Danny was still a little uncertain, but he had to concede that he was still really out of his depth here
>this whole thing was so over his head that he still wasn't sure if he had been giving her the right advice on how to handle it
>he tried not to dwell on it too much, but he wondered if he was really as mature as he liked to think he was...

...if yer sure, then alraigh'...

But if somethin' happens with this an' ya need mah help with anythin', jus' let me know, OK?

Ah do want ta help if Ah can.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563467

File: 1597890711078.png (150.91 KB, 332x555, what do you want.png)

>>41563466
>Charlotte nodded her head, then finally got off her knees and back on her feet
>straightening out her clothes, she took one last, but much more determined sigh
Thank you, Danny.

But please, don't let this upset you in any way.

It is my problem to deal with, and I'd hate for my past choices to begin affecting you as well.

>she placed a hand on his shoulder

You being here is help enough.

Everything else, I need to tackle by myself.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563470

>>41563455

>Mako perked up at that and gave the most genuine smile he’d made so far, glad to hear that his suggestion had been well-recieved, and even more glad to talk to someone who wasn’t just automatically terrified of his dad for some reason

>...even if that thought did end on sort of a weird note

goblins…?

>...well, whatever.


Y-yeah, my dad’s… pretty cool. He acts super dramatic and stuff, but he’s a huge softy.

>...wait, wasn’t there something else that they were missing right now?


...uh, should we… should we like, check on Winnie? She’s been in there for… a while.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563472

File: 1597971612758.jpg (44.68 KB, 480x480, Ill cut you.jpg)

>>41563470
>Abby blinked, slowly turning her head to the shed
...you are correct.
>placing the pumpkin aside, she stood up
>and slowly glided across the ground towards the shed
>knock. knock.
Winnie? Have you gotten yourself stuck in ze coat hangers. Again.

Ah-! S-Sorry, A-Abby!
>Winnie's squeaky voice called from behind the door
I-I-I just-...just had a l-little trouble getting my, uhm... uhm... my top over my h-head... b-but I'll be there in a second!

...Winnie?

Y-Yeah?

Zose are overalls.

...

You are meant to wear zem. Over your clozes.

...

...

...

...

...I-...I'll be a minute...

...
>Abby slowly turned, wandering back over to Mako
She will be a minute. But she is well.

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563507

File: 1598324441965.png (1.57 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_after_the_licen…)

>still thinking that he needed to socialize a bit, Albert tried to find a different part of STAR-A to explore and see if he could meet a different possible friend but probably not
>and rather than head outside in the disgusting inhuman heat to find another area of the campus to loiter around in, he figured he'd keep it to something less oppressive

>he didn't actually use the library much back home, truth be told

>hell, even back when he was a scrawny nerd, he didn't go in there much
>not that he didn't have a library card or anything, but his public library didn't have a large selection of stuff he'd care about
>as for his school's library, he'd have to actually be at school to make use of it
>so the thought of entering the library didn't really occur to him that often
>but he could at least try to mix things up a bit, so why not?

<"...I wonder if an academy for superheroes would have comic books as historical records?"


>not that he was really there to be educated, clearly

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563508

File: 1598325040773.png (315.07 KB, 645x559, just five more minutes.png)

>>41563507
>STAR Academy's library was quite impressive to step into
>its modern-yet-warm design made it seem quite inviting, and it stood out from a lot of the more "practicality over all" sections of the facility
>its selection was also quite vast, with books on just about every topic available for one's classes
>and of course, plenty of selections for non-class related activities as well (and yes, a rather surprisingly comprehensive collection of comic books as well)
>under the dutiful care of Bo Peep, the library was pristine and meticulously curated and taken care of
>it was a popular hang out among students of all walks of life, when you just wanted some place quiet to come and relax in

>further back in the library, where the graphic novels and comic books section was, Albert would not find a new friend candidate

>instead, he'd find an already-kinda-friend-maybe acquaintance: one Winnie D. Woah!

>and she looked liked she had better days

>she was slumping hard on a chair, a glazed over and distant look in her eyes
>one could easily assume she was passed out or worse, at first glance, but the odd gurgling breaths she let out showed she was at least alive
>just... sleeping with her eyes open?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563510

File: 1598326248340.png (1.92 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_listens_to_Eijiro's_plea…)

>>41563508
>this was turning out better than Albert had expected, really
>not only was there a decent selection of what he was looking for - albeit deeper in the back, but that was fine, it looked cozy back there - he saw a familiar face hiding back there as well
>one he hadn't really talked to since that whole incident with Janice and the restaurant, which he'd rather not think about again

<"...I wonder what happened with that whole deal with her and Sandy-augh dammit!"


>luckily he noticed something else to get his brain off of that whole social disaster, that being how Winnie was just kind of...zombie-like


...?

>he walked over to where she was sitting, kneeling down beside her

>and then reached over and lightly waved his hand in front of her eyes, to make sure she was still actually there

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563511

File: 1598326816437.png (132.12 KB, 263x341, I almost forgot.png)

>>41563510
>it took a few seconds longer than it probably should have before Winnie realized anything was amiss
[shy]Snort-!?[shy]
>she jolted awake with a less-than-flattering noise escaping her
W-Wha-- No- I wasn't--!?
>her head turned from side of side, the fear that she had fallen asleep during class again quickly boiling up
>but that was quickly snuffed out when she realized she was in the library
>and also Albert was right in front of her
>so still embarrassing, but less so
A-A-AaaAaalbert!
>her voice gave a weird, high-pitched crack when trying to utter his name
H-H-Hello, I-!
>then quickly put a hand over her mouth, starting to talk a bit louder than she probably should in a library
>granted, it was a big room, and there was nobody around them, but still
>you never knew when Bo Peep was skulking behind the shelves
U-Uh... uhh... hhhhhiiiiiii...
>she gave him a shaky smile, already starting to tremble nervously as she usually did in social interactions

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563512

File: 1598327681655.png (957.39 KB, 1080x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_debut.png)

>>41563511
>Albert couldn't help but smile as Winnie roused from her sleep, and acted as flustered as she did when she realized what had happened

<"God she is just too cute."


Heya...

>he walked around and took a seat beside her, sounding equal parts apologetic and concerned as he spoke, still watching her as he did


Sorry fer wakin' ya...

Are ya OK? Did y' need more sleep? Were y' studyin' a lot 'r somethin'?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563514

File: 1598328375288.png (523.33 KB, 805x559, definitely not nervous.png)

>>41563512
>oh no, he was walking away because of her!
>oh no, oh gosh, he was just taking a seat next to her!
>oh no, oh gosh, oh dear, he was asking her question now about why she was sleeping!
>Winnie very quickly shook her head at... one of his guesses; it was hard to tell which
N-N-Nononono! N-Nothing like tha-!
>again she had to stop herself
>her usual nervous voice level wasn't very library-appropriate!
>she took a short breath in, trying to calm herself and properly answer
I-I've just- I've just been--
>waitwaitWAAAAAAAAAAAAAAIIIIITT!!
>if she tells him she's been working out, won't he just make fun of her!?
>no, it's Albert; Albert has always been nice, right!?
>but she doesn't really know him; what if he just laughs when he hears it!?
...
>Winnie had probably been staring silently at Albert for long enough to look suspicious
>the sweat starting to drip down her forehead didn't help
J-Just... h-had a rough night sleep, yes!
>better safe than emotionally wounded!
H-Heheh... p-part of it was my fault, though!

I-I stayed up a bit later th-than I'm used to watching a movie, a-and I've been, uhh... paying the price, yeah!

H-hah hah...
>it was half truth!
>she really did stay up late yesterday watching a movie!
>she was just leaving out the part where her workout with Mako left her physically and mentally exhausted!
>she had no reason to feel bad because she wasn't really lying!
Uhm... uhh... h-how about you!

Wh-What brings you to the- to the library!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563523

File: 1598375522307.png (545.73 KB, 917x917, Izuku_Midoriya_school_headshot…)

>>41563514

...?

>Albert watched as Winnie stumbled and stuttered over what she was trying to say, and he wondered if maybe he fretted over her a bit too much

>he knew that she was a rather nervous sort of person, something he could totally understand, but he was just wondering out of concern
>as she let an uncomfortable silence settle in, he was about to say that she could relax, when she gave a nervous answer instead
>and he saw no real reason to think she was lying, just assuming that she felt sheepish about it, as she did nearly everything
>he wondered if maybe he'd been better off just leaving her to rest, honestly

>at her question, he just gave a small shrug, not finding much of anything odd about this


Oh, I was jus' bored an' lookin' fer somethin' different t' do. I can only do so many curls 'n lifts b'fore I start gettin' bored, y'kow?

>he briefly glanced at the shelves near them, before looking back to her, still a little worried


I'm not disturbin' ya, am I?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563524

File: 1598392781665.png (366.32 KB, 570x559, its not like that.png)

>>41563523
>"I can only do so many curls 'n lifts b'fore I start gettin' bored, y'know?"
>Winnie could understand that
>given Albert's arms, he could probably go at it for hours, right?
>she could hardly lift her wimpy weights for five minutes, but focus, Winnie, you just started out, don't go comparing yourself to others!
>"I'm not disturbin' ya, am I?"
Eh-?

N-No, no, no! N-Not at all!

I-It's not like- like I came here s-specifically to sleep o-or anything! H-hahah...

>she cleared her throat, trying to settle down from her nervousness

I-I mean... I was here t-to do some studying... at first...
>she slouched slightly on her far-too-comfortable-for-its-own-good seat
B-But whenever I'm at the library, I always... just start getting drowsy...

M-Maybe because it's so quiet in here, o-or... comfortable, I don't know...

B-But I can never get any studying done in the library; I always have to check out what I need, b-but... well, I-I wanted to give Janice a-a bit of time alone, s-so I thought I'd... y'know, try again...

Heh... d-didn't quite work out...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563526

File: 1598394774743.png (1.6 MB, 1919x1079, Izuku_Going_To_UA.png)

>>41563524
>Albert listened patiently as Winnie explained what she was doing there, and briefly made a mental note to not ask about whatever Janice was doing
>whatever was going on there, he was probably better off not knowing, lest he end up in another mess of drama he was ill-equipped to handle

I c'n kinda see what you mean...b'tween th' enforced quiet an' makin' everythin' so...comfy...

>he settled into his own seat a bit more, noticing that he felt like he was almost sinking into it

>he blinked a couple of times, before shaking his head and resuming the conversation

...y-yeah, I c'n get it.

So you c'n probably take comfort in knowin' yer not alone in dozin' off, right?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563527

File: 1598395338484.png (366.87 KB, 572x558, glad for you.png)

>>41563526
>Winnie let out a short, cheerful giggle at Albert's comment
Th-That is comforting, yeah!

At least I'm not the only one falling f-for the library's secret sleepy spell!

>she straightened herself up slightly, already feeling too comfortable on her chair, and not wanting to start dozing off while talking to someone else

>that would be embarrassing and rude!
S-...So, uhh... how've you been!

We haven't really talked much since-... w-well, you know...

I-I mean, we see each other in class, obviously, b-but... not really elsewhere?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563528

File: 1598396865085.png (1.42 MB, 1920x1080, Pixie-Bob_is_18_at_heart.png)

>>41563527
>Albert again tried not to dwell too much on that time Winnie alluded to, for multiple reasons
>though he didn't really have much to say, given how he fell into the routine he had so easily

Yeah, sorry 'bout that. I jus' got caught up in my usual routine, I haven't been much 'f a social butterfly...

Aside that, I got a new roommate. Lou Paige, dunno if ya know him since he's in another class. But I think ya'd both get along really well!

<"If you guys can even talk to each other, that is..."


>the thought of Winnie and Lou just kinda sitting there, awkward silence so powerful it was almost deafening, was not something he wanted to make happen


...kinda hard t' believe so much time has passed, y'know? Feels like it wasn't that long ago that we had that first class, an' then we went t' that restaurant-

<"Dammit!"


>Albert stopped mid-sentence as his smile faded for a second, before he forced a nervous one onto his face


Well, y'know...

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563529

File: 1598398741856.png (476.19 KB, 514x703, it hurts in my heart.png)

>>41563528
>Lou Paige, dunno if ya know him since he's in another class."
K-K-Know him!?
>Winnie jolted back up and fully awake
Y-You mean that Lou Paige!?

Th-The son of a r-real, actual hero!?

Of course I do! And you're rooming with him!? Th-Th-That is so cool!
>Winnie actually completely ignored the bad memories being dug up again, clearly a bit starstruck at the moment
>of course, alongside other Academy Celebrities like Lance Leighton or Mariah Snowbell, there also stood Lou Paige as a standout
>not many students at STAR could call themselves the child of actual professional superheroes, so the few that did quickly made a name for themselves
G-Golly, I-I wouldn't even know what to say t-to someone like that...
>while she was a bit distracted by this, Albert's other words didn't exactly slip right past her
>"...kinda hard t' believe so much time has passed, y'know?"
Uhm-... uhh... yeah, I guess you're right...

...

S-Sometimes... I do end up thinking about it... and how-... how scared I was back then...
>every now and then, she still woke up suddenly in the middle of the night, thinking about that skull-like spider rampaging straight towards her
...
>she put on a bit of a shaky smile, and a light chuckle
I-I, uhh... I wasn't very useful back then... a-and I never really got to apologize f-for that...

You and-...and Janice... you guys didn't even hesitate t-to fight that thing, a-and the guy controlling it...

Even after you nearly got shot, you still-...
>she brought her hands together, awkwardly fumbling with her fingers as the words just kind of left her mouth
Th-...That was really brave of you...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563530

File: 1598400624152.jpg (596.21 KB, 800x1144, 1529025777275_MHA_Deku_boy_fit…)

>>41563529
>Albert had forgotten in the moment that Lou's dad was a famous hero, but in his defense he didn't know who his dad was
>he should really get around to asking about that, but Lou seemed reluctant to really get into that, for some reason
>so he wasn't really expecting Winnie to act all awed that he knew him, and again could only think of how nervous and reluctant Lou would act if and when he met Winnie

>of course that subject didn't last long, and the dip in Winnie's mood was another reason to avoid the subject of that fight, it seemed

>he probably should've guessed that she'd be carrying some guilt over that, unreasonable as it was, given how she had been the chief target in that attack
>so he knew he had to hurry and try to pick her spirits back up

H-Hey, hey, y' don't need ta apologize fer that, OK? Neither of us expected ya t' pitch in, not when that thing was after ya!

<"And maybe if Janice had just gotten down when I said-no, no, don't go down that route again!"


An' besides, y' still helped out at th' end, remember? Even when you were still feelin' bad ya still jumped in t' save our skins! I'd say that's plenty brave!

So no need t' say sorry, OK?

>he paused, then tried again to lighten the mood with another (very weak) joke


I mean, extra apologies is supposed t' be my thing, y'know?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563531

File: 1598401414131.png (435.22 KB, 755x559, sad juice.png)

>>41563530
>"Neither of us expected ya t' pitch in..."
Urk-!
>Winnie flinched
>she knew what he meant
>but still, that little voice in the back of her mind
>it asked if she was just that pathetic and helpless, that no one would ever expect her to do anything to help
>not that she'd blame anyone for thinking like that; she was pretty much useless in multiple ways
>"Even when you were still feelin' bad ya still jumped in t' save our skins!"
...I-I wouldn't...really put it like that...

All I could really do was call All Of Me, a-and...that was it...

I couldn't even move a-at all after that... s-so I don't think I really-..."jumped in" a-and saved anyone...

>she closed her eyes, taking in a deep breath to try and settle down her thoughts

>before turning to Albert with a small smile
B-But that's what why we're here, right?

Even-...even if you can't really control your powers like everyone else, y-you still have a long time to be able to do it.

It just-... it just takes time and...stuff... right?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563533

File: 1598403989870.png (1.23 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_explains_Ms_Joke's_Quirk…)

>>41563531
>Albert could tell that she wasn't totally past this problem, even if he wasn't sure why
>he really wished he could figure out what was getting to Winnie like this - more than just the thoughts over the last fight, but in general
>she really seemed to get down on herself easily, and he wished he could help with that
>but considering he clearly wasn't any good at figuring that out, it wasn't gonna happen any time soon, right?

.....

>he could tell she was trying to give herself confidence, which should've been his job, he just sucked at it, clearly

>so he was quick to jump on an opportunity to try again

Y-Yeah, exactly! Rome wasn't built in a day, after all! Everyone's gotta practice this kinda thing!

An' I know you'll get this down! An' you'll be a great hero when ya do! 'Cause no matter what y' may think, ya did help us back there!

So don't beat yerself up over it, alright?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563534

File: 1598404782339.png (396.27 KB, 650x541, glad everything worked out.png)

>>41563533
>Winnie initially only blinked as Albert tried very hard to inspire some confidence in her
>and then let out a soft, bubbly giggle at it
Y-You're sounding like Mr. Dynamo there...

That's...almost one to one what he'd say whenever I'm in s-some kind of team sport...

>she wasn't sure if she ever believed him

>but she appreciated the attempt, at least?
A-Anyway, e-enough about me!

I'm not really-...uhh... just, enough about that!

>she leaned in a bit closer to Albert

Uhm... s-sorry if this is... a personal question...

But... you were a-...a-a hero before coming here, r-right?

What, uhm... what was that like...?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563537

File: 1598409853402.png (2.31 MB, 1920x1080, Shoto_says_he_worked_hard_on_h…)

>>41563534
>Albert blinked at the comparison Winnie made, but couldn't help but grin a bit sheepishly at the idea of being anything like Mr. Dynamo

A-Ah, well, m-might've got a bit carried away...

>great, now he's overcompensating, time to abort

>thankfully Winnie did give him an out...
>right into something that was probably more embarrassing to talk about
>his face did heat up a bit, as this was the first time someone actually asked him about his time as Cryptid, and he really didn't know how to start

A-Ah, well...

>but he had to try, didn't he?

>this might be the motivation Winnie really needed!
>so he cleared his throat slightly, straightening up in his seat, and tried to speak more confidently as he answered

W-Well...it was kinda difficult, at first...y'know, balancin' th' superhero life an' my real life...my parents knew right away what was happenin', so I didn't need t' worry about that...

At first I jus' did small stuff, really...rescuin' cats off of tall buildin's, patrollin' th' forest fer any criminals, breakin' up bar-fights...wasn't really glamorous but it was a start...

I started gettin' more attention after I fought some poachers near my town, which is kinda how I got my archnemesis-

>he then froze suddenly, before looking around them for an unclear reason

>before settling back into his chair, looking a little more uncertain as he continued

B-But I dunno if I should talk about him...

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563538

File: 1598410261596.png (132.12 KB, 263x341, I almost forgot.png)

>>41563537
>Winnie leaned even closer, clearly being quite easily sucked into Albert's stories, as far from glamorous as they may have been
>sometimes the greatest acts of help weren't the big flashy type, after all!
>imagine how scared someone might be if their cat got stuck in a really tall tree!
>she knows she'd be very thankful if someone rescued her pet off a really tall tree!
>"B-But I dunno if I should talk about him..."
>Winnie blinked, looking surprised and a bit confused by that
>she leaned in some more, speaking a bit more quietly, now extra curious
W-Why not...?

Is-...Is he that dangerous...?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563539

File: 1598411016863.png (2.95 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku's_new_braces.png)

>>41563538

<"Oh crap, I'm freaking her out."


>still, it wasn't like he could downplay the kind of reach NOAH had, since he wasn't sure just how far it extended

>he was American, but even then it was doubtful that he had any connections inside of STAR
>but, still...

W-Well...he's not so much directly dangerous, it's jus' that he's got a lot 'f connections...

>he paused, then leaned in and whispered a bit to Winnie


T' be honest, I was freakin' out over Bluegrass maybe learnin' my identity, because I wasn't sure if he was workin' fer him or not...if he was, an' th' guy found out...

>he didn't finish that, not wanting to dwell on the notion yet again

>instead, he leaned back and rubbed the back of his neck

Not t' mention, he's a public figure. Kinda hard t' get people t' believe that he's actually evil when he's rich an' has a good image...

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563540

File: 1598411592520.png (183.88 KB, 305x558, chin up.png)

>>41563539
>oh
>yeah, that
>that sounded pretty bad
>Albert was seriously going up against his own Lex Luthor
>she couldn't help but be worried for him... but at the same time, only admire him that much more
S-...Sorry for bringing that up...

It does sound...pretty heavy...

>a small part of her couldn't help but wonder just who he was talking about

>rich people with good public images was a wider pool than one might expect nowadays
>even Lex Luthor had (seemingly) made his turn for the better, and regained plenty of public support over the years after his villainous deeds were exposed
>she should probably leave the subject alone for now... but maybe do some snooping later?

>Winnie quickly brought a smile back to her face

W-Well, even those types of bad guys end up being revealed in the end, r-right?

I-I mean, if Superman could stop Lex Luthor, o-or the Justice League stopped Maxwell Lord, then I'm sure you'll be able to expose th-this person someday, and show the world his true colors!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563541

File: 1598412743945.png (1.53 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_thinks_Mezo_saved_their_…)

>>41563540
>Albert knew that Winnie was right
>eventually Nester's antics would catch up to him, he'd be exposed and suffer the consequences of his actions, and the world would be a better place for it
>the idea that he would do it, however, while an idea he certainly liked...
>realistically, he wasn't too sure he could
>he wasn't exactly the type to make a plan very often, not unless he absolutely had to
>so the odds of him somehow exposing Nester didn't seem as likely from an objective point of view
>which meant Albert, in this moment of uncertainty, felt it was nearly impossible

.....

>but Winnie was trying to cheer him up now, so he should at least try to look on the brighter side, shouldn't he?


...y-yeah, I'm sure yer right...

>his smile was still a little weak, but he was trying to keep it up as he answered her


It's not gonna be easy, but...that's part 'f th' reason I'm here, after all! So one day I'll be good enough t' take down guys like him!

<"Although I should probably focus more on not being as dumb as a brick in that case."


>just couldn't help himself there

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563547

File: 1598564762063.png (300.1 KB, 430x560, good luck out there.png)

>>41563541
>Winnie put on a great big optimistic grin on her face
That's the spirit!

A-All it takes is a little patience, and hard work!

>she then paused

>of course, preferably, whoever this bad guy was would be stopped before he could do any harm
>even if not by Albert himself
>but that would put a bit of a damper on the mood, so she kept that to herself

H-Hey, so... are you going to be busy later?

See, I... uhh... I got permission to use the Home Ec. room, b-because I had some recipes I wanted to try...

Uhm... and, uhh... it'd be helpful to have a, uhh... taste-tester, a-and stuff...

I-It's fine if you don't want to, I just thought I'd ask.

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563548

File: 1598567122685.png (2.03 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_uses_All_Might's_smile.p…)

>>41563547
>Albert had started to take a look at the shelves close to them, looking for something to read through, as that was at least part of the reason he was there
>and by doing so, hopefully get his mind off of the task that still laid in wait in the background

-?

>he looked back at her after she asked her question, a bit surprised but nonetheless open to assisting her


Oh, sure, I c'n help ya out with that!

What are y' gonna make? More meat dishes like what y' had b'fore?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563549

File: 1598568459443.png (366.32 KB, 570x559, its not like that.png)

>>41563548
>Winnie flinched a little that he had immediately jumped to a meat dish
>he wasn't wrong at all, but... it still kinda stung
Uhm... y-...yeah, k-kinda...

B-But mostly there's s-some desserts I wanted to try...

They're-...they're old family recipes... e-ever since my great-great grandfather, they're passed down f-from Woah to Woah, a-and each one adds their own personal twist to it...

S-So that's what I'm trying to- to do... i-it's not a lot, so I shouldn't take too much o-of your time or anything.

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563550

File: 1598570080607.png (957.39 KB, 1080x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_debut.png)

>>41563549

...?

>Albert wasn't sure why she reacted like that, honestly

>she really did seem to get nervous over everything, even when it wasn't clear what there was to be nervous over
>so he'd have to try and build her back up some more, hence why he settled back into his seat to properly address her, still trying to be uplifting

Hey, don't worry about it! I'll stick with ya as long as y' need me fer!

B'sides, whatever ya decide t' make, I'm sure it'll be great!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563575

File: 1598832066715.jpg (114.46 KB, 1125x1776, EYHaEPTX0AA6aru.jpg)

>after an eventful afternoon with trying so many of Winnie's dishes - which were really damn good, he didn't know why she was down on herself - Albert was left with a full belly that he now had to work off
>and while it probably wasn't the best idea, a brief run around the campus would help with that
>surely he couldn't regret that, could he?

<"This was the worst idea."


>from how he was leaning against a tree and holding his stomach, clearly he was regretting it

>it wasn't as bad as he expected - the temperature was dropping, and it was starting to feel like autumn would come a bit early this year, so at least he wasn't sweltering
>but he still felt like he had a brick in his stomach that wasn't sitting all that well
>hopefully no one would come along and make him regret his decisions even more than he already did
>but what were the chances of that?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563576

File: 1598832712939.png (224.51 KB, 535x531, I wonder.png)

>>41563575
>for one Brooke Deans, the weather never seemed to affect her much
>warm or cold, dry or wet, she braved anything nature had to offer with a smile on her lips
>today was no different, the mild chill being ever so inviting for her to simply take a nice long walk across campus
>no destination in mind, nothing she planned on seeing or visiting; just walk and enjoy the mere act of walking
...?
>and it seemed like she wasn't alone in wanting to enjoy the outside!
>her eyes were trained with hawk-like precision to zone in on that familiar messy hairdo by this point
>if professional hide-and-seek were a thing, she was pretty sure she would mop the floor with Albert at every turn
AlLLIE~!

What a pleasant surprah-
>she skipped faster towards him, but came to a stop the more the scene became clear to her
>Albert didn't look like he was having a very nice time, curled up and shivering beneath the tree
Hey, you alraght there?
>she asked a bit more cautiously, while still walking closer to him

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563577

File: 1598833954650.png (1.53 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_thinks_Mezo_saved_their_…)

>>41563576

<"Murphy, you're an asshole."


>Albert could hear the all-too-familiar voice approaching, accompanied by the constant smell of oranges, so he wasn't gonna avoid potential embarrassment that easily

>still, he'd have to at least try to not look like a loser here
>so once he heard Brooke, he quickly scrambled up to his feet, forcing a smile on his face and trying to shrug off the pains in his gut

O-Oh, hey Brooke!

I'm...doin' OK! Dinner's jus' not...agreein' with me too well, b-but it's no big deal!

>he leaned on the tree he was near with one hand, trying to look cool despite the sweat on his face


What, ah...what brings ya out here...?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563578

File: 1598834473932.png (86.53 KB, 174x273, what are you doing.png)

>>41563577
>Brooke came to a stop, blinking as Albert gave his explanation
>that sucked; stomachaches were never fun to go through
Ya sure about that?

Shouldn' ya rush on t' th' nearest gentleman's room? It might just get worse if ya try an' wait...

>she tilted her head slightly, but it wasn't a topic she'd push on

>Albert knew his body best, so he'd make his own decisions
>"What, ah...what brings ya out here...?"
Oh, nothin' in particular!
>she answered with her more usual bubbly cheer
Ah was just out on a walk, an' happened t' come across ya.

Seems to happen a bit frequently, don't it? Maybe it's fate~?

>she then paused, looking at Albert's face with a slightly more concerned look creeping back onto her face

...ya sure ye're alraght? Ah can help ya over t' Miss Mayday's office; she might have somethin' she can give ya t' help...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563579

File: 1598838621030.png (1.4 MB, 1920x1080, Tsuyu_All_Might_comparison.png)

>>41563578
>Albert was still sweating a bit as Brooke spoke to him, though whether that was due to panic or just weariness from his run or the stomach pains was unclear
>regardless, he kept up his shaky smile, not wanting to look foolish in front of her
>which, really, it didn't make sense
>it was already clear that nothing more was gonna happen between them, so what did it matter if he looked like a doofus?
>really, he should just relax and be himself more, since he didn't have to think about trying to impress her

Nah, nah, it's alright! I'm sure if I jus' walk it off, I'll be OK!

>or it was just not wanting to be a bother

>so his Canadian-ness was coming through again

Maybe I'll jus' walk with ya! Keep ya company, an' all!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563581

File: 1598843701164.png (684.48 KB, 628x709, Im paying attention.png)

>>41563579
>Brooke looked at him with a slight pout, seemingly not very impressed with this macho display of "just walk it off"
>but it was his grave he was digging; she'd shown enough concern
>with a shrug of her shoulders, she put on a more relaxed mood
Fahne bah me~! Ah don't mahnd a lil' company.

But if ya pass out in th' middle, ya bettah expect a big ol' "Ah told ya so" from these lips a' mahne.

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563595

File: 1598875172394.png (2.31 MB, 1920x1080, Shoto_says_he_worked_hard_on_h…)

>>41563581
>Albert gave a slightly forced chuckle, getting off of the tree and managing to stand there just fine
>as much as his stomach strained in pain, he'd just have to endure it
>y'know, instead of doing something sensible and taking Brooke's suggestion of going to see Mayday
>or even just waiting a few minutes

Hah, don't worry 'bout that! I'm tougher than I look, y'know!

>as if to prove his point, he started walking, albeit at a pretty slow pace


So, classes 're startin' again soon! Y' ready?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563596

File: 1598876224944.png (324.42 KB, 528x559, isnt it fun.png)

>>41563595
>>41563595
>well, they'd test out that bold claim of his in due time
>as it was, Brooke simply followed alongside him, forcing herself a little to walk slower with those taller legs of hers
>"Y' ready?"
Sigh...
>she answered a bit dramatically
Can't quahte say that Ah am!

Ah wouldn't have mahnded an extra month or two or relaxation, personally...

Ah didn't even get t' go to th' beach this year... what kinda Summer is that?

>another sigh, but a more quiet one this time

But Ah suppose Ah didn't have much to wear there anyways...

Just an ol' piece that, well, let's say Ah've outgrown it by quite a bit ovah th' years.

>a light hum left her mouth

But Ah suppose, at th' very least, Ah'm quite ready for th' winter season~!

It's always been somewhat of a favorite a' mahne!

Th' rainy nahghts; th' snow-covered streets; th' good ol' holiday spirit creepin' evah closah... It's got personality!

Summer's nice an' relaxin', but it's kinda uninterestin' by itself, when ya think about it.

Th' only fun's where ya make it; but winter, th' fun's shared by practically everyone around ya!

You're Canadian; ya get what Ah mean, rahght?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563597

File: 1598877376939.png (957.39 KB, 1080x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_debut.png)

>>41563596
>Albert kept pace with Brooke fairly easily, though whether that was due to him magically recovering from his injury or an iron will was unclear
>he did imagine for a moment the "piece" that she outgrew, but had to quickly force that out of his mind as his face heated up
>he was supposed to be controlling himself, he couldn't afford to get distracted from that now!

>luckily Brooke quickly moved on to another subject, and he was watching her with a surprised expression as she went on

>he would've never figured that she'd have that viewpoint, she definitely seemed like a summer sort of person
>the accent probably helped skew his viewpoint that way
>so he was quick to reply with a wide smile, more enthusiastic than before

Yeah, I totally do! I keep tryin' t' explain that t' people, but they jus' don't seem t' get it! They only focus on th' negative, like how much they gotta shovel snow, an' how icy th' roads get, or how cold it is, or whatever!

But if y' ask me it's more exhileratin' than summer! It makes explorin' forests an' fields a lot more bracin' than usual!

>he then gave a happy sigh, as a particular memory came to his mind


An' there's nothin' like seein' th' snow fall at night. Every year I'd just watch it out th' back of my house an' feel so...at peace. I can't explain why, but it's...serene, y'know?

Brooke Deans!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563616

File: 1599002184758.png (224.51 KB, 535x531, I wonder.png)

>>41563597
>Brooke let out a light giggle
Well, Ah wasn't expectin' ya t' feel so strongly about this topic!

Ya look lahke a lil' kid talkin' 'bout th' candy shop~!
>another quiet chuckle
But Ah definitely agree with all of that!

Ah lived in Alaska for a short while, and it's a scenery Ah'll carry in mah brain 'til th' day Ah die!

Lahke ya said, there's somethin' inherently serene and quahte romantic about a snow-covered scenery.

There ain't nothin' in th' summer that can even compete! Spring, maybe, but not summer.

>letting out a small hum, she tapped her chin

Despahte mah appreciation fer th' season, Ah nevah had much of an opportunity to really... play in th' snow...

Nevah went out skiing, that's fer sure. Ah don't even think Ah evah got to build a snowman.

Maybe Ah can swahpe some o' that off mah bucket list this year~

!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563617

File: 1599006238221.png (1.23 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_explains_Ms_Joke's_Quirk…)

>>41563616
>Albert shivered a bit after Brooke's comment, wondering if he went a little overboard
>luckily she didn't seem to think less of him for it, so that bullet was dodged

>the following story about Brooke traveling to Alaska was a thankful shift in focus, and it was something that interested him

>he did like the idea of going further north, and it was something he personally wanted to do
>maybe not to Alaska specifically, but maybe the Yukon or even further to the North Pole
>so the mental image of a wide-open snowy landscape almost untouched by humanity was, indeed, quite the romantic image
>though maybe they weren't quite using the term the same way, it was unclear

>when she made mention of never really having the chance to play in the snow, he certainly looked very surprised by this

>and naturally, without thinking, responded with what he thought was a natural solution

You should see what it gets like around my home town! We get snow pretty early too, an' it can last fer months! Most of it never gets shoveled either, considerin' all th' open space out there!

Plenty o' room t' play around t' your heart's content!

Brooke Deans!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563691

File: 1599325065369.png (60.81 KB, 203x235, how pathetic.png)

>>41563617
>Brooke let out a wistful sigh, suddenly leaning on Albert in the process
Are ya tryin' ta make me jealous?
>then grinned, adding in a very teasing tone
Or maybe ye're tryin' ta get me ta move in with ya when all this is said and done~?

Ye're quiahte th' sly one, Mistah Patterson! Ah reckon Ah can't let mah guard down around ya as much as Ah thought~

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563692

File: 1599327205719.png (2.92 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_Midoriya's_dorm_room.png)

>>41563691
>of course now Albert realized that he was overdoing things again, much to his quick embarrassment
>he was supposed to be backing off with Brooke, not acting more clingy
>his face flushed as he looked away from her, trying to recover from this faux pas

That wasn't-I mean, I wasn' tryin' to...

I jus' thought y' might-well, it jus'-never mind...

Brooke Deans!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563693

File: 1599327524744.png (360.09 KB, 511x500, hunting.png)

>>41563692
>Brook couldn't help herself, letting a somewhat unladylike snort at Albert
>she leaned off of him, giving him a friendly pat on the back
Ah do believe ya overthink things too much, Al~

Still, your hometown sounds lahke a lovely place!

Maybe Ah will visit it someday; who knows~

>she looked back at Albert; more specifically, his abdominal region

How's that tummy a' yers, by th' way?

Sounds lahke ya just had t' get yer mahnd off'a it for a minute or two.

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563695

File: 1599328296021.png (1.92 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_listens_to_Eijiro's_plea…)

>>41563693
>Albert still felt thoroughly mortified, and Brooke bringing up his stupid self-inflicted injury only added to that
>his face was now really red, and he still avoided looking at her as he answered

Y-Yeah, I'm feelin' better now...

<"Aside wanting to dig a hole right here so I can bury myself in it."


Sorry if it was a bother...

>of course acting like this probably just made him look more lame, but he was too busy feeling bad to think about that

Brooke Deans!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563696

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>>41563695
>Brooke blinked, raising an eyebrow slightly in confusion
Don't know what ye're apologizin' fer; ye're th' one in pain, rahght~?
>she let out a short giggle
>but then put on a faux-serious tone
Honestly, Al! You are far too submissive for yer own good!

Ya really oughta stand up more fer yerself! Tell th' world "yeah, Ah got problems, so what" fer once!

A little forwardness an' assertiveness go a long way, y'know!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563697

File: 1599329490463.png (730.09 KB, 1080x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_headshot_2.png)

>>41563696
>this topic did pull Albert out of his embarrassed funk a bit, as he was quick to look up at Brooke with a pout

I can be assertive! Jus'...y'know, when it's appropriate!

I don't wanna be th' type t' jus' throw my weight around whenever, y'know?

>he paused, then again ended up saying something he should've probably thought about first before speaking


Besides, I'm assertive with you, aren't I?

Brooke Deans!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563698

File: 1599331691203.png (442.52 KB, 788x497, pin.png)

>>41563697
>"I'm assertive with you, aren't I?"
Hah!
>Brooke didn't even attempt to hold back that laugh
Is that really what you think?

Oh, Al, honey...
>she quickly wrapped herself around Albert, her arms over his shoulders, and her breath up close to his face
Don't kid yerself.

If Ah wanted, Ah'd have you tied 'round mah lil' pinky, an' play you lahke a puppet~
>with a giggle, she leaned off of him
Ye're too much of an ol' fashioned gentleman, an' those are th' easiest ones ta toy with!

Ya should be thankful Ah ain't th' kinda girl who'd do such awful manipulative schemes~

But Ah do worry if ya evah do come across one who would be. Ya'd be defenseless, dahling~

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563699

File: 1599332447148.png (1.92 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_listens_to_Eijiro's_plea…)

>>41563698
>Albert was left unable to respond at first, a lot of feelings hitting him at once
>Brooke wrapping her arms around him again and whispering right against his ear left him red-faced once more, if only because that was really hot
>but what she actually had to say still irked him a little
>he wasn't that naive, was he?
>he could tell when someone was playing with him, couldn't he?
>probably
>maybe

>he still ended up huffing while his face remained red, looking at Brooke with as defiant a look as he could


W-Well...now that y' said that, I'd be more prepared, w-wouldn't I? I don't jus' roll over an' be a doormat fer everyone, 'specially if I know they're up t' somethin'!

So...uh...

>he paused, then tilted his head as his stubbornness faded a bit


Thanks...I guess?

Brooke Deans!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563700

File: 1599332971870.png (684.48 KB, 628x709, Im paying attention.png)

>>41563699
>another giggle left Brooke
It's the knowin' if they're up t' somethin' that worries me, dahling.
>she then shrugged
But, if ye're that confident, Ah'll put mah trust in ya~

Besahdes, for th' tahme bein', Ah'll be sure t' keep an eye out fer any bad gals seekin' t' take advantage of yer chivalrous ways!
>reaching out, she ran a hand through his hair
Who can blame 'em, really... who wouldn't want a pet quahte as cute as you at their beck an' call~?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563701

File: 1599333647234.png (191.02 KB, 540x374, tumblr_inline_pi0cdqPj9u1ru0rw…)

>>41563700
>Albert really wasn't sure how to feel about what Brooke was saying now
>apart from his face again heating up from the teasing

Well...I hate t' burst yer bubble, but I ain't gonna be wearin' a dog collar or anythin' any time soon.

>he was again avoiding Brooke's gaze, although this time it was more out of his refusal to cave in and admit to what she was saying


I'm sure it's really disappointin' ta hear that, but that's th' reality of it.

Brooke Deans!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563707

File: 1599358313098.png (360.09 KB, 511x500, hunting.png)

>>41563701
>Brooke let out another snort, but a bit more quietly this time
Oh, please, Al!

A dog collah? Do ya think of me so shallow?

Ah don't see an obedient, yappin' dog when Ah look at ya...
>she brought a hand to her chin, examining Albert
Ah'd saaay... ya remind me more of a cute lil' bunny rabbit, or a hamstah~!

Ah'd get a nice an' comfy cage for ya, an' watch ya run round an' round yer lil' exercise wheel fer hours!

>she giggled

Or maaaybe...~
>and suddenly reappeared on Albert's opposite side, leaning on his shoulder again
If Ah was one'a those manipulative tahpes, maybe as a nahce, strong, prahzed stallion Ah'd love t' pull outta the stable every once in a while, an' take ya fer a rahde~!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563709

File: 1599360109426.png (1.6 MB, 1919x1079, Izuku_Going_To_UA.png)

>>41563707
>at first, Albert was obviously miffed at being compared to a bunny, again feeling like he was being mocked a bit
>sure, a wild hare could ruin a predator's day if the circumstances were right, but a tamed rabbit not so much
>then he was flustered again at the comparison to a "stallion", especially as Brooke leaned on him and talked about taking him "for a ride"
>considering all the implications therein, which he should really be used to with her, but he was still trying to abstain a bit!
>but then, after some brief contemplation, he noticed that this was a really bizarre coincidence
>the comparison to the rabbit was one thing, considering him rescuing one was what led to him getting his powers, which he was pretty sure he hadn't divulged to her
>but with the other comparison...

>Albert lifted his head after a moment, looking up to Brooke with a slightly sheepish look


...would now be th' time t' mention that our farm used ta breed race horses?

Brooke Deans!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563710

File: 1599360847288.png (142.42 KB, 254x304, we can do it.png)

>>41563709
>Brooke blinked at Albert's remark, left staring at him for a few seconds
...

...

So ya already come with yer own saddle, then?
>she let out another snort
>and without warning, simply jumped onto him to cling to his back
Then get goin', Mistah Horse~!

Th' orphans are stuck in th' ol' abandoned mine, an' it's our job t' save 'em!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563712

File: 1599367014781.png (378.99 KB, 714x454, Camie_pins_Izuku.png)

>>41563710

-!

>Albert nearly fell over when Brooke was suddenly on his back, stumbling forward a bit before managing to keep himself steady

>naturally, he instinctively moved his hands back under Brooke's legs, just to keep her from falling off, as he made his protests known

I-I said used ta! We don't anymore!

...I mean, we still have th' horses there, but-

>he paused, then shook his head and made a frustrated noise


A-Anyway, don't jus' do that without warnin' me!

>this, despite the fact that he didn't seem to be having too much trouble holding onto her, even with their differences in height

Brooke Deans!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563720

File: 1599433943768.png (342.49 KB, 474x518, work hard.png)

>>41563712
>Brooke pouted, resting her chin atop his head
Nah, Ah think Ah'll do this more!

What's th' point of havin' such a broad back if ya can't make a sudden emergency landin' over it~?
>she snickered, swinging a leg to tap at the side of Albert's leg
Now, c'mon!

Let's walk by th' fields an' make th' football team jealous~

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563721

File: 1599436070328.png (1.6 MB, 1919x1079, Izuku_Going_To_UA.png)

>>41563720
>Albert had to take a moment or two to compose himself again, given how Brooke was pressing against him like she was
>again, something he honestly was used to, but given he was still trying to abstain a bit it was a pretty noticeable distraction
>so, really, going for a run might help keep his mind off of it
>key word being "might"

...well, I can't very well refuse now, can I?

>he just hoped that he didn't run into anyone he knew while doing this

>so he did as Brooke asked and started a short jog, heading in the vague direction of the football field
>all while thinking that he at least doesn't know a football player that'll give him shit for this scenario

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563722

File: 1599441402093.png (2.95 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku's_new_braces.png)

>some time after the incident with the football field, Brooke on his back, and the feeling that he could've sworn he saw Joanne among the crowd watching practice, Albert managed to slip away and go for a less strenuous jog
>the day had worn on and it was nearly night, and the temperature had dropped quite a bit, but that just made the experience more bracing, if nothing else
>regardless, Albert was sure his day was nearly over, and nothing else odd could happen to him
>surely not
>right?

???!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563723

>>41563722
>surely not, as Albert's walk went by uninterrupted by anyone or anything
>just a casual trek through the pristine STAR Academy gardens, still in bloom even with the coming of Fall
>the trees seemed especially vibrant and filled with leaves, almost as if taking one last chance to display their full beauty before they began changing color and falling off
>why, one of those trees even had an arm dangling out from it!
>what a show off!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563724

File: 1599442265878.png (1.47 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_finds_out_he_pa…)

>>41563723
>Albert really did enjoy fall
>the leaves covered in vibrant colours, the sound that they made when he stepped on them, the unique scent in the air
>it was something you just had to hurry outside and enjoy for yourself a bit
>he jogged lightly past one of those trees, a smile on his face as he saw the leaves rustling in the wind

.....

>and then stopped, running in place, as if noticing something amiss

>he jogged backwards a bit, looking up at the tree again, not sure if he really saw what he saw

.....

>but, he did

>a human arm, dangling out of the tree, almost as if it was an extra branch

.....

<"WHAT THE FUCK."

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563725

File: 1599442721286.png (250.91 KB, 511x664, it could be.png)

>>41563724
>the arm dangled there for a brief moment, lightly swaying in the air
>but then it slowly retreated up into the tree, vanishing among the leaves
>and in its place, a leg emerged instead
>a rather shapely and bare leg, lightly swaying from side to side like a metronome
...hmm...?
>a very quiet sound left the leaves
Oh... someone's there...?
>the leg moved again, as if waving at Albert
>as the familiar and feeble voice called out to him
Hellooo? May I have your attention for a moment?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563726

File: 1599445846565.png (1.4 MB, 1920x1080, Tsuyu_All_Might_comparison.png)

>>41563725

.....

<"I told myself I was done with the weirdness today!"


>seeing an arm hanging from a tree was disturbing enough

>seeing it retract and a bare leg pop out, as if someone (the tree?!) was trying to seduce him?
>this was somewhere between a bad comedy and a weird nightmare
>but then he heard the familiar voice speak up, and then it started to make a bit more sense

...Liz?

>Albert took a step or two closer to the tree, trying to find where she was


Is that you?

How'd you even get up there?

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563727

File: 1599446384320.png (268.21 KB, 408x629, please.png)

>>41563726
>there was a pause, the girl in the tree blinking
That voice...
>she shifted her position slightly on the large branch she was lying in
>and sure enough, the girl's lengthy braided hair quickly stood out among the green foliage
>along with a few other things, but who's counting
Oh. Hello, Albert...

What a pleasant surprise... meeting you again like this...
>she shifted around on the branch, now just balancing across it
Ah... yes... it may seem strange...

You see, as I was on my way for some food at the dorm, I stumbled across a hurt little bird...

I did not want to leave it on the ground, where it could be preyed upon by the cats and dogs that roam the campus...

I climbed up this tree to give it a safe refuge to heal itself... only for it to immediately fly away once I got up here...

Now... I'm afraid I am the one in danger... less-immediate danger, but... I am quite stuck up here...

The tree... it seemed smaller as I was climbing up... than it did once I got up here...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563728

File: 1599447888838.png (2.03 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_uses_All_Might's_smile.p…)

>>41563727
>boy she really didn't leave a lot to the imagination with that dress
>unfortunately Albert couldn't very well look away from that because he still had to actually look at Liz to talk to her, but it was yet another test of his kinda-sorta celibacy
>so instead he tried to focus on the story she was telling, which sounded like something out of a Disney movie more than anything else
>not that he'd criticize her for doing that, it was just a strange scenario to hear having actually happened
>still, more pressing was the actual rescue, which Albert already opted to do with no second thoughts

OK, just gimme a sec!

>there was a faint glow coming off of Albert's body for a second, before he suddenly jumped up and latched onto the tree trunk

>and then ascended the trunk with surprising speed, making it up to Liz's branch in no time, stopping just short of climbing onto it
>he looked over at her with a grin, reaching a hand out for her to take

Ready t' go?

>Liz would notice that Albert's hair had changed to a slightly lighter shade, looking a bit more brown

>but more noticeable than that was the slight increase in size of his front teeth

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563729

File: 1599448179570.png (44.37 KB, 144x280, here too.png)

>>41563728
>Liz blinked, watching as Albert all of a sudden moved with the speed and grace of... like, a frog, or something
>just like that, he was already in a nearby branch and holding out his hand towards her
>...did Albert always have those teeth?
>she was pretty sure he didn't
Ah... thank you...
>she reached out, taking his hand with her gloved hand
>she carefully crawled on the branch, finding the right position to be in
>before she simply jumped onto Albert to grab on, the girl thankfully being deceptively light

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563730

File: 1599449012306.png (1.6 MB, 1919x1079, Izuku_Going_To_UA.png)

>>41563729
>Albert was a little surprised that Liz didn't just do her fusion thing with him for safety's sake, but didn't elect to bring it up
>he just focused on getting her to safety, and once she was hanging off of him, he looked back to her and spoke cautiously

OK, be sure t' hold on tight! This is gonna be a little disorientin'!

>he then somehow turned around 180 degrees while clinging to the trunk, now facing down at the ground below

>yet this didn't do anything to affect him, and he promptly skittered back down the trunk as easily as he came back up, simply crawling down until he reached the ground
>he crawled down off of the trunk, still on all-fours, before slowly getting up to a standing position
>once done, he glowed faintly against for a second, before looking back at Liz with a slightly worried look

OK, we're down! You alright back there?

>the strange changes to his face were now gone, and Albert was back to his usual self

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563731

File: 1599449379119.png (502.09 KB, 558x478, stubborn pride.png)

>>41563730
>when Albert began spinning around, Liz's body reacted entirely on instinct
>her legs merged into Albert's so she wouldn't fall down, maintaining her hold on him as best she could
>once they were safe and sound on solid ground, Liz let herself detach from Albert
Thank you for... rescuing me...
>despite her gratitude, she didn't seem very happy
>not even looking up at Albert, a very noticeable look of disappointment on her face
I'm sorry... I didn't mean to invade your body...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563732

File: 1599450476922.png (545.73 KB, 917x917, Izuku_Midoriya_school_headshot…)

>>41563731
>Albert did feel that fuzzy sensation go through his legs as he climbed down, but it happened so fast he barely registered what Liz had done
>still, he didn't seem too bothered by it, looking up at her and lightly shaking his head

Hey, don't worry about it. I did kinda spring that on ya, it's only natural ya'd react t' that.

So it didn't bother me none.

>he paused for a moment, then reached over and placed a hand on her shoulder


It wasn' like ya tried ta do that on purpose, so it's fine, isn't it?

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563733

File: 1599450946017.png (202.63 KB, 701x497, is it noticeable.png)

>>41563732
>despite Albert's attempts, Liz still seemed to be mentally kicking herself
No... but it doesn't make it right...
>she lifted her head to look at him
I'm supposed to keep my... abilities under control...

I've been here for so long... but...
>she rolled the shoulder Albert's hand was on a bit uncomfortably
I still feel... the itchy... prickly... begging me to crawl i-into...-!
>she finally reached with her gloved hand, very gently pushing Albert's arm away from her
...I'm sorry...

I don't-...I don't think it's fine... even if I didn't mean to... even when I really want to...

I should never invade someone without their approval... without asking...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563736

File: 1599484543379.png (120.98 KB, 224x590, Mirio_meets_Izuku.png)

>>41563733
>Albert only looked more worried as Liz responded to him, watching as she seemed anguished over this action she took
>he could certainly understand the concern about keeping one's powers under control, and obviously it was only right to ask permission to do something like what she was doing
>but he could also tell just how difficult it was for her to avoid doing that, so he still felt the need to help her somehow
>it just wasn't easy to tell what that something was

.....

>reckless as it was, there was only one thing that came to mind

>which probably wasn't the best idea, but it was better than nothing, right?

...an' what if I said ya had my permission t' do that t' me whenever?

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563744

File: 1599576144045.png (91.1 KB, 179x259, uncertain.png)

>>41563736
>Liz's eyes widened slightly, quickly looking back at Albert in surprise
>it was difficult to really discern what was going on inside her head; her expression seemed like a confusing mixture of shock, worry, a bit of fear and excitement, along with a few others
>Liz crossed her arms in front of her in a self-hug to try and stabilize her mind and really think about the offer
...

Y-...You shouldn't...
>the answer came out a bit painfully from her throat
I deeply appreciate the thought... I really do... it means a lot to me that you would be willing to do that... that you're not afraid of me...

But the problem runs deeper than that, I'm afraid...

This experience... merging with someone else... it is one I fear I am easily addicted by...

Asking others for permission is not just for their sake, but to prevent myself from becoming too... comfortable... living inside someone else again...

I have spent much of my time at STAR trying to curb this nature of mine... and I still have difficulties, as our... first interaction may have shown you...

Once again, I am very grateful for the offer, but I must refuse... I am to strive to not rely on my powers, and you would be too good of a safety net to risk compromising that...

Your interior is... far too interesting and comfortable... like a beanbag chair... too easy to get lost in a dream...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563746

File: 1599601045323.png (2.14 MB, 1920x1080, You're_next_Izuku.png)

>>41563744
>Albert watched while still looking worried as Liz politely declined his offer
>he could certainly understand wanting to avoid something that could worsen an addiction, and he felt bad for making the offer without making that realization
>he wondered a bit how Liz could be around anyone without having that problem overwhelming her, really
>at the same time he didn't want to just leave her to suffer in silence, even if merging with him was as tempting as it was
>he didn't expect to be compared to a beanbag chair, in all honesty

...alright, I hear ya...

But is there anythin' I c'n do? Anythin' at all?

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563748

File: 1599603156931.png (216.53 KB, 282x434, you are fine.png)

>>41563746
>Liz blinked, left staring at Albert again with a more muted expression this time
>but slowly, a very small smile did stretch on her face
You concern... confuses me a little... we've only met twice, and yet you're always so willing to help...

It's... very kind of you... your warmth is on the outside as well...

I almost feel a little embarrassed... that you show this much care towards me when we hardly know each other...

...
>she paused for a moment, clearly thinking for an answer to his question
>before simply suggesting:
Would you care to join me for dinner...?

It's always nice to have some company, and I could get to know more about you...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563749

File: 1599605884105.png (957.39 KB, 1080x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_debut.png)

>>41563748
>Albert started to get a little flushed at Liz's compliments, not giving the whole thing as much thought as she had been
>true, they had only really met once before this, but considering he basically shared his body with her, that wasn't something to just shrug off

<"...boy is that a weird thing to think of out of context."


W-Well, y'know...jus' don't like leavin' people alone when they need help...

>he rubbed the back of his neck as he said this, wondering for a moment if he was just a bit too generous with his time and his need to help

>but then quickly dismissed it because you can never be too helpful!

-?

>the invitation to dinner came right after this, and without thinking Albert replied:


Sure, I'd love ta!

>and then realized what he just agreed to


<"...is this a date now...?"

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563755

File: 1599683979925.png (44.37 KB, 144x280, here too.png)

>>41563749
>Liz's strange smile grew a bit more as Albert accepted her offer

>so, a short while later...

>from breakfast to dinner, STAR Academy's cafeteria was always open to tend to the food needs of everyone
>since they arrived a bit early, there were still plenty of seats to choose from, so Liz went for a secluded booth
>in front of her was a simple yet hearty salad, a generous and colorful collection of healthy vegetables to satiate her stomach
I don't usually eat in such public spaces... normally I'll just bring the food back to my room...
>she looked aside at the rest of the people in the cafeteria, and those just now walking in
It's... interesting...

Sitting besides so many people... each one with their own lives, own problems, conversations...

But unlike watching people from afar, you too belong to that group... just one of many seeking to fill their hunger, aware yet unaware of all those surrounding you...

I wonder if anyone is wondering about us... the same way I wonder about them...
>she refocused on her salad
I do not feel watched... but you can never truly know...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563756

File: 1599689590809.png (1.98 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku's_damaged_arms.png)

>>41563755
>Albert's dinner was relatively light as well, given he had still been digesting the taste-test session Winnie had roped him into, consisting only of a plate of fries
>he didn't even put gravy on them, because he didn't follow these new Canadian stereotypes dammit
>just the old ones

>he listened quietly as Liz mused on the idea of wondering about other people's lives, and if people were doing the same with them

>while he wasn't much of a people watcher himself, he could understand the appeal a bit, and knew what it was like to be on the other end

I'm sure there are a couple 'f people who would be curious. I mean, we're all interestin' in different ways, right?

>he said this while remembering his rather odd experience with that Bram person before

>in hindsight, him coming up and starting a conversation with him had to be because of something like that
>although why he asked about Abby was still rather perplexing

You could always jus' talk t' someone. It seems t' be workin' out fer me better than I expected!

>really, if he had been two or three years younger when he came here he'd be totally different

>no way would he be this sociable

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563757

File: 1599691307208.png (206.81 KB, 526x414, we are friends right.png)

>>41563756
>"You could always jus' talk t' someone."
>Liz let out a soft hum and she poked at her salad
I've attempted... "just talking" to others before...

Approaching people, introducing myself, asking questions... I can't say I seemed to be as lucky as you...

Most found me strange... or were confused at me... or startled, if they didn't notice me... and those who humored my curiosity usually end up afraid of me the more I shared about myself...

I try to be honest... about me and what I am capable of... it isn't fair to others to not be aware of it...

>she took a pause to eat a bit of salad, chewing rather slowly prior to swallowing her food

Being social... it must be nice... but I seem to have more luck in interactions whose focus aren't strictly social...

The fashion club has accepted me, when I originally only joined because... I enjoy knitting...

I had no assumptions of making any friends, but ended up meeting many new people simply because they enjoyed my work...

People meet people differently, I suppose... social interactions are all about using your best tools to make others like you...

Some are naturally inviting... molded like friends instantly... you seem to be that way... I feel nice around you... you seem trustworthy and patient... even for a relative stranger, I feel like I can let my guard down around you...

It's strange... difficult to explain... but I feel no danger... I feel... safe, even...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563760

File: 1599693735115.png (1.53 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_thinks_Mezo_saved_their_…)

>>41563757
>Albert kept quiet while sampling from the plate of fries he had, mulling over what Liz was telling him
>he could understand her tribulations with connecting with people - he didn't say it aloud but she did tend to come off as a bit creepy, with her stare being so focused and her method of speech being just slightly...off
>but after meeting Abby and still being curious enough to find her (was she avoiding him?) Liz seemed just fine to him

>he flushed again slightly at Liz's repeated compliment to him, and he couldn't help but find it strange

>was he really that nice to her?
>he wasn't even really thinking about it all that much, he just tried to help
>then again maybe it just seemed notable to her given her utilitarian way of getting to know people

A-Am I really that friendly...?

Honestly, b'fore I came here I wasn't...like, at all. I didn' get along with most anyone, an' would try 'n get out 'f class partially because I jus' didn't want ta deal with them. I got along with one 'f my teachers more than anyone my age...

<"...I wonder what Double's up to now, come to think of it..."

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563761

File: 1599695563418.png (250.91 KB, 511x664, it could be.png)

>>41563760
>Liz let out a quiet hum, clearly paying attention to Albert
>she never quite seemed not to be, keeping her focus on him pretty regularly
That is surprising to hear... I would have never guessed...

>she tilted her head slightly

I suppose people can always change... it's never truly late...

But I wonder how... what causes such a shift...

Is it simply the change in scenery... or the scenery itself... the academy is a strange place... but we are all strange... like you said, interesting in different ways...

I've had people approach me, curious about me and what I can do... attracting attention isn't hard, but retaining it is...

I would never say I feel alone... even without the fashion club, I would always have a friend... Sandy is always there, even when we were young...

...this teacher of yours... were they someone special to you... in a setting where few others were...?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563764

File: 1599698777059.png (1.8 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_struggles_to_develop_his…)

>>41563761
>Albert's expression changed to an uncertain one
>determining how exactly he felt about Double was...tricky
>he was close to her and had a crush on her, of course
>but was how he viewed her really accurate?
>there was still a lot about her he didn't really know, and it seemed like she kept her guard up in a lot of ways
>even now he had a hard time deciding if they were still close, especially since they didn't really talk since he moved

...she...she was, yeah...

It was like...it felt like she was genuine, y'know? Most people I knew in that school, whether I would've hung out with them or not, felt like they were just putting on airs or put up an image of what they thought people would like. An' she just...was.

I didn't really feel at home then, so getting to talk to her on a regular basis was a lot more refreshing...

>he frowned in thought, poking at his fries as he spoke


...now, I dunno where we stand. When I told her I was coming here it didn't seem to really affect her that much. She was surprised, yeah, but just kinda rolled with it.

...I dunno, maybe I'm expecting too much...

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563771

File: 1599839411829.png (148.29 KB, 229x480, planning nothing.png)

>>41563764
>Liz was quiet, slowly picking away at her salad as Albert aired out something that sounded like it had been in his mind for a while
>she wondered shortly why he was so quick to open up to her; most people didn't find her someone they could trust
>was Albert's trustworthiness somehow a byproduct of how trusting he was towards others?
>"...I dunno, maybe I'm expecting too much..."
...

...

Were you in love with her?
>the question was blunt as a sledgehammer, but delivered as casually as casual could be
>there wasn't any surprise, any teasing, not even any big curiosity, really
>it just seemed like the most obvious question to pose

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563772

File: 1599843962689.png (148.3 KB, 449x543, standing here.png)

>it wasn't too late to back down
>just stand up from her desk, leap out the window, and flee to Nepal where she could live the rest of her life as a goat
>that was the thought endlessly repeating itself inside Charlotte Charles- no... Joy Torres's mind
>the life she had worked so, so hard to remain dead had just crawled its way back onto her lap
>and as much as she desperately wanted to run away... she knew she couldn't

>click

>it was too later to run anyway
Uhh... hello?
>Joanne Cannes peaked into the room
>admittedly, she was a bit surprised to see someone was inside the room
>Joanne had always had a very acute hearing, so she was pretty positive the room was empty at first with how deathly silent it seemed

Yes, Ms. Cannes. Please, come in.
>Charlotte called from her desk, making a vague motion with her hand
>she seemed as cold as a statue, but boy, did she feel the most nervous she had ever been in her life

Heh... Thanks for actually getting my name right.
>Joanne commented with a bit of a smirk as she stepped inside
You wouldn't believe how many people have called me "Cans" before.
>she took her seat, only to be faced with the unflinching visage of Charlotte Charlestone
<"...tough crowd..."

...
>now that she'd finally saw Joanne Cannes in the flesh... quite frankly, she saw very little in common between them
>but that just seemed to be a Torres thing; she didn't resemble her sister very much; her own daughter didn't resemble her at all; and pretty much nobody in the family looked like her own mother
>as much as she liked her brain to believe that this was all one big misunderstanding, she knew full well that wishful thinking
>every single detail added up; there was no escaping the unequivocal truth that-

Sooo... what am in for?

...?
>crap, how long had she been quiet

Is this about the open mic night thing?

What- ...no. No, it is not about that. Much as the faculty doesn't exactly condone such vivid language, we respect our students' creative freedom, and all the necessary warnings were properly given for that event. You did not break any rules, so you have no need to concern yourself over any punishment.

>Joanne let out a light sigh

That's good to hear.

...

...

...

...

...

So... what did you call me here for?

>Charlotte flinched a little, realizing she'd gone silent again

>damn it; she really wished the conversation could've stayed on strict professional terms
Y-Yes, well... Miss Cannes... it's-...
>just say something
...STAR Academy takes a great interest in knowing its students are having the best possible experience they can during their stay here. You've had a long trip from your hometown just to come here, yes?

>Joanne blinked, but that sounded pretty logical

Well, yeah, I guess so. Douglastown and Metropolis are totally different worlds, but I think I've managed fine. It's not my first time in a big city or anything, so...
>she shrugged her shoulders

I see. And your rooming situation. Has it been satisfactory?

Oh, yeah. There was a bit of a growing process, for sure, but Abs is cool once you get to know her.

...right. It's quite peculiar, actually, that someone could grow to accustomed to Miss Addams's unique attributes so quickly.

>Joanne just gave another shrug

I'm just that brave, I guess.

...

...
>great, more silence
>although, strangely enough, it wasn't that awkward
>not for Joanne, at least, and she couldn't really pinpoint why
>something about the silence between them just felt... normal?
>like they could sit there staring at each other for hours, and somehow still feel like they had a decent conversation
>it was weird
...

Your-...

...?

...your family situation, Miss Cannes...

>Joanne slowly raised an eyebrow

Yeah...?

Not that I mean to pry, but-... well, we're aware of your father's condition.

...

It couldn't possibly have been easy... growing up with a parent so far ahead in years...

>Joanne's expression very subtly soured

What's it to you?

>Charlotte didn't move, but inwardly, she felt that iciness in Joanne's monotone voice


Sure, dad's old, but he's always been there for me.
>her hand reached up, somewhat by instinct, to feel the dog tags he'd given her to remember him by
Just because he forgets things sometimes, it doesn't mean he's a bad father.

Th-That's not what I was trying to insinuate, Miss C-

Then what?
>Joanne bluntly interrupted
You know I've heard that before, right? Everyone thinks they just know what's better for me, when they don't even know my dad. That man worked himself to death to make sure I had the best life I could possibly have, and he did it all alone.

...

So if you think I'm gonna sit here and listen to another damn suit try to tell me that-

What of your mother.

>Joanne was snapped out of her train of thought with Charlotte's own interruption

Wh-... My mom's a saint, just as much as dad is, and even more of a reason for people to leave me alo-

Your birth mother.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563773

File: 1599844105884.png (23.44 KB, 112x170, only a scratch.png)

>>41563772
>Joanne's voice quickly died in her throat, her eyes widening as much of that fire in her died down
...
>instead, she shrunk into herself, putting up every defense she'd gathered in her life up to this point
What about her?

What do you know of her.

I know she abandoned me.
>Joanne's answer was almost instantaneous
And my dad. In the one moment he needed her the most.
>she shrugged her shoulders
She wanted nothing to do with either of us. That was her decision. My decision was to not care about the woman who doesn't care about me.
>she let out a short click of her tongue
I already have a mother. So I don't see why I have to bother thinking about this other wom-
>she paused, quickly gaining a more nervous look on her face
Wait... don't fucking tell me you guys found her or something!?
>she quickly stood up from her chair
That's it, isn't it!? She's gonna step in through the door like some fuckin' cheap reality show, right!? You can't do this to-

Miss Cannes, please, calm down. We made no such search for your biological mother.

>Joanne flinched at Charlotte's unflinching monotone, but did as told

>she took in a few deep breaths, wiping some of the sweat that had been dripping down her face already

...technically speaking... we came across entirely by luck.

...
>Joanne very slowly lifted her head to stare at the woman in front of her

...Miss Cannes, there is no easy way to say this, but... I can say it with certainty. I am your biological mother.

>Joanne's eyes widened, taking a slightly stumbling step backward

No...

It was... quite the shock for me as well. And it took a lot of thinking on my behalf to figure out what the best course of action to take would have been.
>she looked up at Joanne
In the end, I decided the truth was what you deserved. Anything would be-

>CLUMP-THUNK!

>Charlotte jolted up to her feet once Joanne had collided directly against the chair behind her
Joanne. Are you-

DON'T!
>her voice came out as a panicked cacophony, the girl trembling on the floor
>and glaring up at Charlotte with a mixture of confusion, anger, and even fear
Don't CALL me that you don't- you don't GET TO call me THAT!

I understand, Miss Cannes, but-

No, no, no,, no-!!
>Joanne scrambled on the floor, quickly getting back to her feet
>while still backing away from the woman and towards the exit
You- you can't- you can't just- you CAN'T- don't-do this to me-I CAN'T take it-!

>Charlotte was left silent, not moving from her place behind her desk

>until finally, all she could really utter was a simple, monotone:
...I'm sorry.

-!!
>Joanne backed away again, hitting the cabinet behind her, but not even registering the pain
You-I'm so-!?
>Joanne quickly brought her hands to cover her mouth, her breathing growing increasingly erratic
>her vision was distorted, both from the turbulence going on inside her brain, and the tears there were freely pouring out from her eyes
>finally, she was able to command her legs to turn around as fast as they could, and run straight out the door without another word

...
>Charlotte slowly lowered herself to take her seat again
>arms folded on the desk in front of her, she coiled into herself as she put up a cone of silence around her
>and let her own painful, messy cry out of her freely for once in her life
This post was edited by its author on .

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563774

File: 1599858387220.png (730.09 KB, 1080x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_headshot_2.png)

>>41563771

-!

>Albert jolted at the question, not only unprepared for it but wondering how the hell Liz even got to that conclusion

>let alone the fact that it wasn't all that farfetched

.....

>with his face just a bit redder, Albert tried his best to articulate his complicated thoughts


...I...maybe?

It's hard t' really say...I definitely like her, an' I liked hangin' out with her...but it jus' felt like somethin' tha'd never really happen. So I didn' ever try an' bring it up...

An' now I've been here fer so long, it's like it's jus'...not ever on my mind.

>he frowned uncertainly, scratching his head


I dunno what that says about me...

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563775

File: 1599913466948.png (202.63 KB, 701x497, is it noticeable.png)

>>41563774
>"I dunno what that says about me..."
>Liz blinked, tilting her head slightly again
Why do you think it would...?

You said it yourself... you never felt like anything could happen, so you did the only logical thing...

You moved on... moving on is important... meeting new people, new friends, new love...

For some it is easy... for others, it is the hardest thing in the world... but that doesn't change anything...

It's what is best for you... it's what opens up more paths in front of you... rather than dwell on an obsession that would never go anywhere...

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563776

File: 1599915993619.png (38.44 KB, 150x170, want your present.png)

>STAR Academy's sports hall was easily one of the largest areas in the entire faculty
>not only did it encompass the enormous gymnasium, but a few dozen outdoor courts for nearly every sport imaginable
>being attached at the hip several other facilities one could get a good workout and tone one's body also helped its impressive size
>this was where many students often came to put their skills to the practice, a sense of friendly and accepting competition being shared among them
>one didn't need to be physically fit to participate; if you felt confident enough in your meta-quirk, then you were more than free to take up a challenge, or send one out of your own

>but today was a much more relaxed day for the general area

>it was too close to lunchtime for the usually large crowds to have flooded in, leaving only a handful of stragglers inside the gymnasium

>despite his best efforts, Jin Unmane had yet to be able to fulfill his dream of a dedicated area to practice his sumo skills

>he didn't blame the faculty, of course; sumo wasn't exactly a high-demand sport in Illinois, but as a San Fransokyo native, it was something he quite sorely missed
>thankfully, Jin had found a good number of like-minded friends who gladly joined his unofficial sumo club
>with only a few more members, Jin was certain he could make a better case towards the faculty to offer them a proper ring
>in the meantime, a makeshift ring on some mats was a perfectly acceptable substitute for Jin and his friends to clash in their intense bouts

>today, Jin found himself in a scenario he would normally be very excited for

>any time someone new approached him with the hopes of a tryout was a great day
>unfortunately for him, they current hopeful applicant... well, it didn't take a well-trained eye to tell she wasn't exactly cut out for the job
>regular sumo already requires a strong and sturdy body, but this wasn't ordinary sumo by any means
>Jin and his friends enjoyed mixing in their unique abilities with the sport, so long as all the basic rules were followed
>and it had nothing to do with the fact the girl in front of her was half his size; Jin had been at STAR long enough to know that size had no bearing on one's meta-quirk
OK! OK, jus'-... huff puff... one more try! I gots it this time!

Well... if you insist...

>both fighters took their stances

>and in the blink of an eye-
>BOYOING~!
>the girl was sent flying off the ring as soon as her hands hit Jin, and onto some crash pads they had set up for her after the fifth time that had happened
>the problem wasn't that the girl didn't seem physically fit; the problem was that her meta-quirk was literally incompatible with the sport

Owww...~
>Willow Paige wasn't quite as popular around the school as her older brother was; most people didn't even realize they were siblings to begin with
>but she was pretty recognizable around campus, for a couple of reasons
OK! Best... twelve out of seventeen!

I... don't think that's how that works...
>Jin sighed, scratching his cheek
L-Look, I really appreciate that you have an interest in us, but... I don't think this is the sport for you...

Oh, come oooooooon!
>Will jumped onto her feet (being very careful to land toes-first) with a rather... unique bounciness that had earned her some repute around campus
I just didn't have my back in it! Maybe ya's just too big for me! Gimme a month or two; I can gain weight!

>Jin heard someone behind him try desperately not to snicker

Well... it's true; your spring quirk would probably work better that way...

See! Even ya agree~!

If that's what you want, I can't exactly stop you... b-but I still don't think we can accept you as you currently are...

>Will pouted, clearly disappointed, but also understanding

Yeah, I guess ya right...

Sorry...

>she gave him a sharp toothed grin

Bah! No hard feelings! Ya gotta look after yer own goals; I getcha!
>she gave them a quick thumbs up
Good luck on getting that club! I'm rottin' for yas!
>with a hum, she then completely changed her focus around her
Hmm... if sumo's outta the question... what else I gots t' try...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563777

File: 1599918217749.png (1.53 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_thinks_Mezo_saved_their_…)

>>41563775
>Albert didn't respond right away, but he did concede that Liz was right
>if he was still stewing over his relationship with Double here, especially considering it likely wouldn't go anywhere, that'd just show he was too far gone to act rationally
>and he did move on...more or less, which was for the better
>at least, for the most part

...yeah, yer right...

>he offered a slight smile at Liz after this, and while he still had a nagging concern or two, he didn't want to dominate the conversation


An' comin' here has been a lot 'f help with that. An' jus'...bein' more friendly, I guess.

I guess I jus' needed th' change t' realize that's th' kinda person I am, right?

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563778

File: 1599920085113.jpg (50.09 KB, 540x483, tumblr_pb5km6Q7Y51wqrls0o2_540…)

>>41563776
>The sports hall was a good place to observe a large amount of the student body using their meta-quirks. Which was why Chris could be commonly found there in spite of their short stature and rather frail body, perched on the bleachers with their notebooks and a pair of binoculars. What was there to see today?
>Vanessa was playing volley ball... No wait, the ball was her head and she's trying to get it back.
>That new student Veronica was on the rock wall. Hard to get information on that one always seems to know when Chris was following her.
>Miss Springs was running a class through drills, getting them to run while tethered to a giant tire. Would Chris be subjected to that too as part of the Hero Courses? Would they even be able to move much less run with something that heavy dragging behind them?

likely not. they'll need to give me something lighter... like a regular tire.

>In addition to their notebook full of data on students, they had several thick books on mathematical equations, quantum theory, and... "It's Morphin Time! The big book of transformations and the science behind them!" A strange combination of literature but Chris wasn't exactly a normal person. What *is* normal anymore? Hmmm no, shouldn't get distracted. Can't let any new information slip past.

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563779

File: 1599920195842.png (1.57 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_Midoriya_after_the_licen…)

>after a pleasant dinner and everything else today had brought, Albert was just about ready to call it a day
>so he was heading back to his room, mulling over his last conversation with Liz a bit
>while he did feel that he needed to come here now, if only to get over some of his hang-ups with people, a part of him still felt uneasy
>that knowledge that he'd have to leave all of this behind and go back home when he was done wasn't gone yet, and while he thought he'd accepted that now he felt guilty about it again
>how many of the friends he made here would he just have to move on from when this was over?
>if he did somehow find a relationship here, would that have to end too?

<"...man this sucks to think about."

Lizabeth Ozborn!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563780

File: 1599920579968.png (55.07 KB, 200x240, suspicious sounds.png)

>>41563778
>Will tried to keep up with her mental list of sports she had already tried
>it was a bit of a long one, so she was a bit distracted
>she could spot that big wall in the distant though; that looked kinda neat!
>but was wall climbing really a sport?
>it seemed more like a skill to her
>but it still looked fun; she liked high places!
>maybe she could go over and-
Hm?
>stopping, she noticed someone who seemed a little out of place
>a small girl with binoculars and a lot of books strewn around
>who brought books to the gym?
>gyms aren't for books; libraries are for books!
>was she lost or something?
>but then why the funky make-see-far glasses?
>was her eyesight that bad?
...
>she seemed to be focusing a lot on al the other students
...
>wait a second...
...
>waaaaaait a second...
...hmph!
>Will swiftly marched over to the bleachers, taking heavy steps upwards towards the peeper
>and stopped directly in front of her binoculars, arms crossed just above her stomach, and a stern look in her eyes
'Ey!

You seein' any sign around here sayin' it's OK to stare?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563781

File: 1599921081313.png (143.87 KB, 273x421, shy.png)

>>41563779
>it happened remarkably fast
>where exactly she had come from wasn't immediately clear, since she had approached Albert with frightening silence
>her hand gripped down on his forearm tightly, as she sped past him in an uncharacteristically fast stride for Joanne Cannes
>she didn't utter a single word, she didn't ask for anything, she just grabbed Albert and expected him to be dragged along behind her
>a bizarre noise left Joanne's mouth, her heavy breathing being mixed in with noise as she was clearly unable to control her powers at this moment
>she kept her head lowered, but her perfect poker face was very noticeably forceful, her eyes wide and twitching as she kept them glued on the ground

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563783

File: 1599921893495.png (2.14 MB, 1920x1080, You're_next_Izuku.png)

>>41563781

-?!

>Albert was jarred out of his thoughts when he felt the sudden tug on his arm, pulling him forward into a faster pace than he had before

>he looked over to see who had latched onto him, starting to voice his confusion upon noticing who it was

J-Joanne-?

>he stopped partway, however, noticing that something was definitely wrong

>the way she wasn't looking at him, the fact that all that came from her was some incoherent mixes of sounds, very quickly indicated that something had happened and they needed to talk
>so Albert kept his mouth shut and simply kept up the pace with her, waiting to see where they'd go

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563784

File: 1599922339576.png (319.54 KB, 700x550, bass boosted.png)

>>41563783
>the walk was lengthy, and on more than one occasion, it was clear Joanne didn't actually know where she was going
>she'd often stop and turn suddenly, and roam around the same places for a minute or two, before once again changing trajectories
>all the while without uttering a single word, only the bizarre white noise still leaving her throat
>after what felt like half an hour of this, Joanne finally seemed to slow down and come to a stop in one of the campus's small plazas
>she let go of Albert's arm, making a direct line to one of the tables, and simply taking a seat
>before instantly dropping her head onto her arms over the table, taking in deep breaths, the cacophonous noise coming from her throat slowly settling down
>after a good minute or two of this, Joanne finally grew silent, breathing softly and normally for the first time in a while
>she was trembling, and quite visibly so, but at least she seemed able to talk
...

...I need to leave...

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563785

File: 1599922577377.png (279.66 KB, 540x473, tumblr_px71cxderP1xz94hwo1_540…)

>>41563780
>Focused on their studies as Chris was, they didn't notice the girl approaching until they were obstructing their view. Lowing the binoculars to look at the source of the interruption...

...

>However, Chris found their eyes refusing to travel further north to reach the other person's face. Their gaze Somehow content on it's residency on the twin peaks they'd found themselves on.


<"How does she even stand up with those?"


I beg your... pardon?
This post was edited by its author on .

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563786

File: 1599922876028.png (1.68 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku's_coming_out_party.png)

>>41563784
>once they had finally come to a stop, Albert immediately took a seat beside Joanne, placing a hand on her shoulder to try and keep her steady
>whatever this was it was clearly a huge deal to her, and she looked so upset by it that he wasn't really sure where to begin
>for the moment, all he could do was try and be there for her as best he could

-?!

>when she did finally speak, he jolted again, looking at her with a shocked expression


Leave?

Like, from STAR altogether?

<"This is that bad?!"


>Albert couldn't even comprehend what could prompt that from her

>she had been so gung-ho about going to STAR, and even talked him out of walking away when he had second thoughts, so what could make her want to leave?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563787

File: 1599922947012.png (32.01 KB, 100x140, is this how it goes.png)

>>41563785
>Will quickly let out a snort
Beg all ya want, it ain't makin' a difference!
>she quickly swiped the binoculars off of Chris's hands
Ya think yer bein' clever or something!?

Takes a lotta guts t' not even try and hide yourself when doing somethin' like this!

I gots my right mind t' go and tell a teacher about this, but I don't mind letting ya off with a warnin', got it?

Just don't let me catch ya doin' this again! Have some decency, man!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563788

File: 1599923437013.png (45.77 KB, 252x193, please make it stop.png)

>>41563786
>Joanne nodded her head quite emphatically
Yes. Leave. Right now. I can't-
>she brought both hands to her face, taking in another deep breath
>she needed to take a few seconds to calm herself down, and really think about what she was saying
...no... I-...I don't know... I...
>she let out a low growl
Goddammit... fuck... why this...
>another deep breath through clenched teeth, Joanne reaching up to rub at her eyes
I-I'm sorry, I-...I just-... I don't know what to do, and- and you're the only person I could think of to talk to, but-...but I don't-...

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563789

File: 1599923739726.jpg (314.2 KB, 1832x2048, 1565948476360.jpg)

>>41563787
What are you-- hey!

>Shocked that someone would just take something from them like that, Chris gawked for a moment which allowed this person to... lecture them? Hide? Gah! She was making no sense and she was being a distraction.


What are you going on about?! And return those to me at once, those binoculars are not a toy!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563790

File: 1599924346993.png (54.99 KB, 200x240, I dont know about this.png)

>>41563789
Come on, don't try and play dumb with me!
>Will sighed at the sad, sad sight in front of her
>she still handed the binoculars back however; she wasn't going to steal them
>even if it would technically be for a good cause?
>whatever, she just didn't want this girl to go around peeping again
Look, I'm tryin' to give you a chance here!

If anyone else caught you peepin' on other students, I don't think they'd be quite so forgiving!

Those goggles of yers just clinch it, man! Yer not even bein' subtle about it!

>she looked down at all the books strewn around the place, raising an eyebrow

>and randomly picking up one of them to flip through
And what's these for anyway? Don't tell me ya gots any photos hidden in these! That's just low!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563791

File: 1599924424500.png (1.92 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_listens_to_Eijiro's_plea…)

>>41563788
>Albert watched as Joanne struggled with what to think over whatever was affecting her, trying not to take an impulsive course of action but still really needing to just get away from the situation
>he waited until she calmed down a little more, and simply moved his hand off of her shoulder, only to wrap his arm around her back and pull her into a half-hug

Hey, it's OK, y'know you can come t' me with anything.

What happened, though?

>he paused for a moment, then he couldn't help but let the worse case scenario sink into his head and have his brain run with it


...did someone hurt you?!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563792

File: 1599924832120.png (127.71 KB, 236x407, thats no good.png)

>>41563791
>the half-hug did wonders in grounding Joanne's thoughts, and letting her be more thorough with how she filtered the mess going on in her brain
>so when he asked, Joanne was quick to shake her head
N-No, no, it wasn't- it wasn't that...
>a part of her brain almost wanted to say it was worse
>she could handle hurt; she'd been hurt before
>but this... how the hell do you handle this!?
...

OK... OK...

It's-... it's my mo- my-...
>a growl, before she got it out through gritted teeth:
T-The woman who gave birth to me.

...she's-... she's here. She knows me. She's-... she's a teacher here, and I-... Fuck!
>she curled up, leaning further onto Albert without knowing what else to do
How the fuck did this happen...

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563793

File: 1599925589104.png (2.26 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_thinks_about_the_Room_Ki…)

>>41563792
>Albert calmed down a little bit after Joanne said no one had hurt her, but he was still a bit antsy
>he held his tongue, however, and let her get out what she needed to say, explaining what happened

.....

>which was such a sudden turn of events that Albert actually didn't know how to respond, staring blankly at Joanne for a second

>before blinking profusely and trying to find the right thing to ask

...a teacher...? Here...?

...how did ya find out? Did...did she arrange fer you t' come here an' talk t' ya...?

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563794

File: 1599925761223.png (134.34 KB, 400x500, tumblr_pg0atcU9Rv1xi2q4do1_400…)

>>41563790
>Gobsmacked for a third time in rapid succession, Chris' mouth hung open as they processed what this girl was accusing them off.

Peeping... Peeping?! Are you daft!? I am not peeping, I am doing research on the meta-quirks of the student body! Very important research as well!

>By luck, Will had picked up Chris' not book and she didn't find any lewd images thumbing through it, just a lot of names, data, personal notes, and pages and pages of what looked like one long continuous mathematical equation. Though that was all she could see before Chris hurriedly grabs the book back from Will, their manners being suppressed as a wave of indignation sweep over the mage.


Don't touch that! And who jumps to that sort of conclusion anyway?! What else would a spectator in the bleachers be doing aside from spectating?! Did all the nutrients meant for your brain get stuck in your massive chest or something?!
This post was edited by its author on .

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563795

File: 1599926114877.png (45.77 KB, 252x193, please make it stop.png)

>>41563793
>"Did...did she arrange fer you t' come here an' talk t' ya...?"
I don't know?
>Joanne answered with a slightly panic-distorted voice
>clearly she hadn't even thought about that possibility until now
Sh-...She told me. She called me up, asked me a few question, and then just-... she just-... fuckin', dropped that bomb on me!
>she took a moment to stop and breathe, trying to not let her thoughts get ahead of her again
...she said-...she said it was luck, but- but I don't know!
>Joanne quickly stood up, pushing herself off of Albert to begin pacing back and forth
What if she did know about me!? Wh-What if all of this was just her plan to get to me?

What if- What if she's gonna try to get custody of me!? She was asking questions about dad, and- and my life, a-a-and. I- I can't- I can't-!!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563796

File: 1599926683861.png (54.99 KB, 200x240, I dont know about this.png)

>>41563794
>that was a lot of names and a lot of numbers
>...wait a second... could this be...
>was this a peeper's creeper noteboo-
Nweh!?
>Will jolted when Chris started yelling and ripped the book straight off her hands
>"What else would a spectator in the bleachers be doing aside from spectating?!"
...
>...
...
>...
...
>...
...oh.

Oh, yeah! That does make sense, don't it!
>she quickly brought a very apologetic look on her face, still grinning despite it
H-Heh, yeah, OK! Myyyy bad on that! I admit it!

I, uhh... geez, this is awkward... I just ain't never seen anyone with do any spectating with binoculars before!

Jumped the gun on that, I did! I'm really so, so, sooo sorry!

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563797

File: 1599927039612.png (1.26 MB, 1920x1080, Izuku_wins_obstacle_race.png)

>>41563795
>Albert stood up soon after Joanne did, quick to walk in front of her and place his hands on her shoulders, again to try and calm her

Joanne! Joanne, just calm down, OK? Panickin' like this isn't gonna help ya!

>he waited a second to see if she'd relax a bit, then pressed onwards


Look, even if that was th' reason, there's no way it'd actually happen, right?

Yer a citizen from another country, fer starters. So even sortin' out which court t' go to would take ages. An' if they did sort that out, yer a legal adult so you could jus' decide who'd have custody of ya yerself! If ya don't want her in yer life, no one's gonna force ya.

>he paused again as he thought about this scenario, then asked what was probably the obvious question


...did she even say what she actually wanted...?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563798

File: 1599927875341.png (143.87 KB, 273x421, shy.png)

>>41563797
>Joanne stopped once Albert grabbed her, but her brain was still racing a mile a minute
>even as he tried to point out how this couldn't happen, Joanne could only remind herself that they were currently in an ultra-super-duper-top-secret school with very obvious ties to shady and omnipotent government entities
>if anyone could go around the law like that, it would probably be someone working here, right!?
>"...did she even say what she actually wanted...?"
...
>Joanne quickly shook her head
N-No... I-I...I left... I got out of there b-before she could even say anything else...
>Joanne brought her heads back onto her face
>and simply let herself fall forward onto Albert, trembling
I just-...I just don't know... why's this happening... why now...!?

Albert Patterson!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563799

File: 1599929766287.png (1.78 MB, 1920x1080, Episode_46.png)

>>41563798
>Albert quickly hugged Joanne as she fell into his arms, a worried expression still on his face as he struggled with what to do
>despite his reassurances he had no clue why Joanne's biological mother would do this
>he had no clue what sort of person she was, or what even led to her leaving Joanne in the first place, so there was no guessing what her intentions were
>or if she even had any intentions and this really was just a crazy coincidence
>whatever the case, what was important right now was to get Joanne to feel at ease again

...it's gonna be OK, Joanne. Whatever's goin' on here, it won't change anythin'.

Yer dad's still yer dad, an' yer mom's still yer mom. Nothin' legal will change that.

Whatever this lady's got in mind, if she even does, ya don't have ta go with it. An' I know whatever's happening, ya won't let it change anythin'.

>he gave a light smile, trying to get her mood to jump back up


I feel more sorry fer whoever'd try an' separate you from yer parents. You'd leave 'em with tinnitus at best and permanently deaf at worst.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563800

File: 1599931100804.png (286.4 KB, 895x556, let me think.png)

>>41563799
>Joanne rather weakly grabbed to Albert, burying her face on his shoulder
>and even as he tried to help her mood, he couldn't miss the short hiccups that escaped Joanne
>it took her a while before she could pry her face from his shoulder, reaching up to rub at the tears gathered in her eyes
>but there was the faint trace of a smile on her lips, so Albert's attempts clearly weren't for naught
>but she didn't say anything, simply letting her head fall back onto Albert with a soft sigh
>her heart was racing, and holding on to Albert... well, it was helping a lot in keeping her calm
>he was pretty much the only person she had connecting her back home, and that was something she really needed right now
...thank you....
>whatever this warm feeling she was getting on her chest and face was probably not something to concern herself with right now

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563801

File: 1599936152279.jpg (115.72 KB, 850x1189, __natsuki_doki_doki_literature…)

>>41563796
>Chris fumed in silence for a few more moments while the girl finally saw the errors in her thinking and apologized before visibly relaxing and going back to their observations.

Just... question yourself before acting on an impulse.

>Chris got right back to their scoping out.


And I need this to actually see what people are doing up close. It's not good enough to see someone's meta-quirk from a distance, I need to be able to see minute details or I won't get anywhere with my work.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563802

File: 1599939206763.png (18.08 KB, 55x144, hi there.png)

>>41563801
>Will stood where she was, listening carefully as the girl explained herself
>"And I need this to actually see what people are doing up close."
...

...

Wouldn't it make more sense t' just... get up close, then?
>she asked with total honesty
I mean, if ya needs t' see people up close, why you all the way out here?

Seems counter-into-tive t' me.
>scratching her head, she really didn't seem to fully understand this girl
Oh, I know! Why not just join in on th' exercise?

Not only do ya gets t' see others up close, ya gets t' experience what they can do firsthand!

Ain't that better than lookin' through stuff through some glass?

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563809

File: 1600040680310.png (166.17 KB, 512x708, __natsuki_doki_doki_literature…)

>>41563802
>Chris wasn't a stranger to asking people for interviews about their abilities, those were done usually one-on-one. But participating in in actual sports, with loooots of people?

Absolutely not.

>No way, never mind the being in such a social settiing, Chris would be exhausted by the time the event was over. They couldn't write notes in such a state!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563817

File: 1600081596747.png (39.92 KB, 168x159, happy to be here.png)

>>41563809
Uh-?
>Will was a bit taken aback by the short and blunt response
Why not?

It makes perfect sense, don't it!

Practical beats theorical all the time!

>with a toothy grin, she pointed a thumb out towards herself

>though a bit awkwardly as, for some reason, the girl didn't seem to fully curl her fingers
C'mon! Ya can join me!

I'm tryin' t' find a sport I gets t' be good at!

We can search together!

Oh! I'm Will, by th' way! Nice t' meet'cha!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563818

File: 1600110418997.png (315.07 KB, 645x559, just five more minutes.png)

>baking was so much fun!
>is what Winnie usually tended to think
>baking was easily one of her favorite things to do, which was why she'd chosen it as her current activity
>she hadn't gotten much sleep the night before, and was definitely feeling the squeeze because of it
>she'd hoped baking would be enough stimulus to keep her wide awake, and for a good while, it sure worked
>unfortunately, as soon as her cupcakes when into the oven, that stimulant very quickly started wearing off
>there was nothing left to do except... wait
>and wait...
>and wait...
>and stare at the cupcakes as they baked
>and wait...
>and boy, her eyes were tired...
>maybe closing them for a little while wouldn't hurt, right?
>she had the timer on; that'd wake her up when they were done!
>totally!
>definitely!
>maybe...

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563819

>>41563818

>the phrase “boys will be boys” has taken on a negative connotation in modern times, a boilerplate excuse put out by the old to justify any abuses of power from young men

>but there was a truth to it; a purer, simple truth
>boys will in fact be boys, but what does that truly mean?
>it means that there’s something in the soul of every young man; the spirit behind such cultural masterpieces as the seminal youtube classic “British lads hit each other with chair”, the suburban male id that fuelled the career of Bam Margera, the propensity for a dude to get together with his bros and do something stupid and self destructive in a foolhardy display of youthful disregard for mortality

>this was the real deep shit that J thought about as he walked down the hall back to the dorm, picking bloodstained splinters out of his arms

>the past couple of days, Janice had been busy with her newfound relationship with Sandy, and the two had been spending just about every waking moment together in that way that new teenage lovebirds who had both read way too much trashy romance fiction do
>and that left J alone for the very first time in his life. He didn’t like it.
>so, that forced him into the somewhat awkward position of having to hang out with The Guys without the benefit of Janice as a mediary, creating an awkward question of “are you guys my friends, or her friends who I just hover around”, which J very much preferred to completely ignore and dodge altogether by instead suggesting something stupid and self destructive

>and that was how the inaugural session of the STAR Academy Stick Fighting Chad Society was conceived

>the rules of this secretive club were very complex and elegant; you and the dudes went into the woods around the school, you found some cool sticks, and then you hit each other with them and whoever hit the others the most was the winner
>it was a very good system, and one that J was very good at, except for the part where he fell off a hill and into a bush
>he was still basking in his victory as he shut the door behind him, only to freeze at the sight of Winnie just kinda… standing there
>motionless
>staring at the wall, with empty, dead eyes

...winnie?

>he asked in an uncharacteristically quiet, concerned voice


you okay, dude?

>he came a bit closer, leaning in to look at her vacant face

>he waved a hand in front of her face

winnie? winniiiieeee. wiiiiiiiiiiiinie.



>poke.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563820

File: 1600114893595.png (132.12 KB, 263x341, I almost forgot.png)

>>41563819
>why, what heavenly sound could that be dancing along the edges of her ears?
>someone was calling her name with such harmony and grace
>could it be her cupcakes, sprung to life and ready to name her their great cupcake queen?
>or perhaps a valiant and buff knight in shiny buff armor riding atop his great steed to carry her off in his buff arms?
>or just the sweet serenade of wild birds, drawing her closer and closer to her beloved buff prince charming?
>or-

>poke

WAH-HNEEEEHH!?
>Winnie jolted as soon as she felt something poke her, turning around with surprising speed for her
>and being met face to face with a very familiar face
Wha- Jani-...?
>she paused, blinking and taking a bit of a longer look
O-Or... J?
>it was still pretty hard to tell the pseudo-twins apart, but Winnie had figured out a couple of signs unique to either one
>the first one being that J had a much more expressive face than Janice
>but the principal tell was... well, Janice wouldn't be caught dead in the shirts J liked to wear
Uhh- Uhhm... h-hi, I, uhh... sorry, I didn't hear you come in!
>she managed a small smile; she wasn't nearly as nervous around J as she was around Janice
>or most other people for that matter; something about J just wasn't very intimidating
I-I'm making some-...some cupcakes! Th-They'll be a while still, but if you want, you-
>her eyes feel a bit further down, and she flinched again at J's (minor but still) injuries
O-Oh! J! Y-You're hurt! D-Do-- I-!

I-I'll go get the first aid kit!

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563823

>>41563820

>the difference in how Winnie acted around J vs everyone else hadn’t been lost on him, but he never thought of a proper explanation for it

>buuuut, she probably just felt secure and safe in his confident, manly presence, so it’s fiiiine
>either way, he quickly perked back up to his usual… whatever you called the whole… J Thing.

>”I-I'm making some-...some cupcakes! Th-They'll be a while still, but if you want, you-”


OH, RAD, SURE. I’M ALWAYS DOWN FOR ANY’A THE SHIT YOU MAKE, IT’S ALWAYS-

>”O-Oh! J! Y-You're hurt! D-Do-- I-!”


huh?

>he glanced back down at himself, only now taking notice of the handful of twigs still jabbed through his arms


OH, SHIT, RIGHT. NAH, IT’S COOL, DON’T WORRY ABOUT IT! JUST GOTTA…

>with a total lack of any elegance or care, he just grabbed the stick and pulled it straight through his arm with a gross squelching noise


- PBBLT. SEE? ‘SNOTHIN’.

>the “wound”, if you could call it that, promptly closed back up on its own, and J carelessly tossed the stick over his shoulder


I’M MORE CONCERNED ABOUT YOU, ACTUALLY. YOU DOIN’ OKAY? PASSING OUT STANDING UP ISN’T REALLY A YOU THING. IT’S MORE OF A BRAM THING, AND EVEN THAT WAS ONLY THAT ONE TIME.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563824

File: 1600211422472.png (396.27 KB, 650x541, glad everything worked out.png)

>>41563823
>Winnie flinched, recoiling slightly as J simply ripped out the twigs from his arm
>it was easy to forget he was more some kind of... weird blood bubble person
>didn't stop her from worrying though
W-Well, OK... if you say so...
>even as the wound closed, she wondered if it was that easy
>it was probably stupid to worry about, but she still did
>"I'M MORE CONCERNED ABOUT YOU, ACTUALLY."
Eh-?
>Winnie blinked, standing up straight again
>and quickly tried to wave her hands to reassure J
O-Oh! That! R-Really, that's nothing! I-It's just... kind of a thing that runs in the family!

W-We can fall asleep just about anywhere! It's... a blessing a-and a curse, you could call it. Heh...

A-Anyway, I just wasn't able to get much sleep last night. Not really sure why, b-but...
>she paused, as if trying to think of any reason
>but just shrugged her shoulders
I'm sure it was just a weird night for me. I-I just gotta tough it out, is all!

>she smiled at J, happy that he was concerned, but trying to reassure him there was nothing bad going on

>...but wait, she almost forgot-
W-W-Wait, how d-did you even get that stick in you! A-Are you sure you're not really hurt somewhere!?

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563826

File: 1600214096152.png (128.83 KB, 414x562, __natsuki_doki_doki_literature…)

>>41563817
>As much as Chris wanted to protest, they got the feeling this person would would not relent regardless of the excuse.

I'll warn you that I have poor constitutions! Don't expect me to keep up physical activity for long!

>Or at least that's what they'll say so they can duck out at an opportune time.


And I am Chris Wilder, it's... nice to meet you Will.

>not really, but nammers.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563834

File: 1600282516922.png (87.2 KB, 200x260, something fun.png)

>>41563826
>Will's grin only grew wider, the girl very happy to have found a fellow find-a-sport's buddy to share quality time with!
>"Don't expect me to keep up with physical activity for long!"
Well, ain't that what exercising's all about?

Ya start out week-legged and hard of breathin', an' ya work and work and work 'til ya gets strong and hard!
>she held up her hands in fists that weren't fully closed
Y'know, startin' out small and getting better by the day!

That's what's so fun about it! Ya gets to see your progress in real time!

>she turned, already ready to march along ahead of Chris

>but held herself back because that would be rude, and she was still curious about some things
So!

...what'cha say you're workin' on again?

Why ya tryin' t' study folks anyway?

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563835

>>41563824

GO SLEEP THEN.

>J’s answer was characteristically blunt, as expected

>and he certainly wasn’t saying that in spite of the fact that he’d be mildly let down to not get to hang out with Winnie alone for once, shut up

>”W-W-Wait, how d-did you even get that stick in you!”


...UHHHHHH…

>he paused to consider what to say

>Winnie was a… uh, gentle soul, to say the least. Mmmmaaaaybe it wasn’t the best idea to explain to her how he had his entire upper body cleaved off and sent tumbling into the underbrush with a particularly forceful swing in a mass of gore

...JUST… DUDE STUFF. I WAS JUST HANGING OUT WITH THE OTHER GUYS, DON’T WORRY ABOUT IT.

>he was quick to break eye contact, returning his attention to picking the rest of the debris out of his skin


I PROMISE IT’S FINE, WIN. IT’S LIKE, NONE OF MY BODY IS “REAL” OR WHATEVER ANYWAYS, IT’S JUST LIKE… Y’KNOW THOSE BIG MECH THINGS THAT SOME CONSTRUCTION WORKERS ‘N COPS AND SHIT USE? I’M LIKE ONE OF THOSE.

JUST… SQUISHIER.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563873

File: 1600436435075.png (56.55 KB, 183x198, no big deal.png)

>>41563835
>"JUST... DUDE STUFF."
Ah...
>Winnie didn't really get it, but at least it didn't sound like it was anything dangerous
>as J went on to explain how his "body" worked... it didn't fully help in getting Winnie to worry less
>but she still tried to give him a smile, and just trust him when he said he was fine
O-OK... sorry, it's just easy to forget sometimes.

You're just... J all the way, in my head!
>she let out a short giggle, looking a lot less nervous now
>she quickly glanced back to check on her muffins
W-Well, anyway... I-I shouldn't go to sleep. It's way too easy for me to just snore through whatever alarm I put on, s-so I worry I would end up sleeping too much.

It's fine though! I can stay awake, no problem! Especially if you're around to keep me company!
>she paused, then quickly added:
Th-That is, only if you want to! If you have other plans, o-of course you should get to them! I'll be fine on my own too!

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563874

>>41563873

>J was probably about to say something about the importance of a healthy sleep schedule and be unusually responsible for once, but then Winnie blindsided him with that last part


>”Especially if you're around to keep me company!”

>wait, she was, like, actually willing to hang out with him?
>of course she was willing to hang out with him, he’s awesome!
>but she thought he was awesome??
>he was, but she – but Winnie - ????

...Y-YEAH! SURE, i’M… I DON’T HAVE ANYTHING.

>J promptly buried that thought because he had ABSOLUTELY NO REASON TO BE EMBARASSED of course

>he promptly just plopped himself down on the pile of random loose blankets and laundry on the floor that he had claimed as his little nest and tried to look as casual and un-flustered as he could

SO, UH, WHAT’S UP, OR WHATEVER? I HAVEN’T REALLY HAD ANYONE TO HANG OUT WITH LATELY, EVERYONE’S KINDA BUSY WITH THEIR OWN SHIT – I HAVEN’T REALLY RUN INTO YOU AT ALL THE PAST FEW DAYS UNTIL YOU WERE ALREADY ASLEEP.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563875

File: 1600449508081.png (481.93 KB, 789x559, I believe in you.png)

>>41563874
>Winnie stayed close to the oven; it was better to stay on her feet than risk getting sleepier by sitting down somewhere
>"I HAVEN'T REALLY RUN INTO YOU AT ALL THE PAST FEW DAYS..."
O-Oh... yeah, sorry about that!

I've been kinda... spending a lot of my time trying to practice using All Of Me.

Seeing all of you guys at the hero classes really kinda, uhh... w-well, lit a fire under me, I guess? Heh...

Just... the way everyone can use their powers already, like... like it's no big deal? I really want that...

S-So I kinda... made a promise to myself! That I'd be able to use my power with no problem by the end of the year! Then I-I'll be ready to start hero classes of my own!

>she fidgeted a little in place, a subtle blush over her cheeks

S-S-So... I've been spending most of my time with that!
>a bit more fidgeting, and a slightly more awkward look came over her face
>truth was, there was a second reason why she hadn't been spending as much time around the room
>but she really wasn't going to just come out and say it
>so just quickly change the subject!
H-How about you? I hope you haven't been too bored o-or anything, i-if everyone's so busy...

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563882

>>41563873
>J smiled – an actual honest smile instead of his usual cocky shitbag smirk
>but even if his smile was genuine, it wasn’t gonna stop him from saying something stupid

SHIT, DUDE, I’M PRETTY SURE YOU COULD ALREADY BREAK EVERY MOTHERFUCKER IN THIS SCHOOL IN HALF IF YOU WANTED TO. THE THOUGHT OF YOU ABLE TO DO ALL YOUR STANDY STUFF WHENEVER YOU WANT, NO WEAKNESSES? THAT’S, LIKE, SOME HULK-LEVEL SHIT.

>”H-How about you? I hope you haven't been too bored o-or anything, i-if everyone's so busy...”


>and just like that, his smile faltered a bit, briefly turning into an awkward grimace


IT’S… EH. I’M OKAY. JUST BEEN KINDA BORING LATELY. JANICE’S BEEN BUSY WITH HER AND SANDY’S WHOLE… THING, LANCE HAS SPORTS SHIT, BRAM’S BUSY WITH HIS GADGET NERD JUNK, AND DANNY’S JUST BEEN ACTING WEIRD AROUND US THE LAST COUPLE DAYS, SO…

>shrug!


THERE’S ONLY SO MUCH TIME I CAN SPEND HANGING OUT WITH APRIL BEFORE I START SLOWLY DYING OF ZACH OVERDOSE.

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563885

File: 1600546442936.png (1.27 MB, 1200x1300, 20dbb938ef15d36210ae4b6f8bac72…)

>In her dorm, Kari huffed a little bit
>She'd just gotten the hang off making outfits from her cell medals, she switched between outfits looking in mirror trying to decide one to wear
>Fancy dress? No, no, they're going to the movies that'd be too much, ...School Uniform? No, too formal...
>eventually she just settled for a nice and comfy pair of yoga pants, skirt, cute hat and sweat shirt as she made her way out the door.
>She was kind of nervous, this was her first REAL date, let alone one with another girl.
>But Louise was really nice...and Kari knew for sure they'd both enjoy the movie
>She breathed in, and she breathed out. as she stepped out onto the pavement and made her way down to where she'd be meeting Louise for the movie that night, tickets tucked inside of her pockets as she shuffled around a little nervously across the pavement, face very lightly tinted red as she thought about the fact she actually asked a girl out

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563886

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>>41563885
Is this the right choice?
>Looking between two outfits laid on her bed, Louise folded her arms. Looking over to her clock, she saw that it was starting to get late.
I don't have time to worry about this I'll be late.
>Grabbing the blouse from one outfit, she opened up the back and put it on before buttoning up the back.
>Taking the skirt from the other, she put it on before she rushed to finish getting dressed.
Alright ready to go.
>Glancing at her window, she debated going out of it before instead walking out the normal way and started heading for the theatre.

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563897

File: 1600565351517.png (256.78 KB, 426x599, 61e61951ce710b1c84af9d8a39db6e…)

>>41563886

>Once Kari noticed the red headed dragon girl across the street from where she ended up at the theatre, she waved motioning her to come over


Louise! Over here!

>She called out and kept waving


So glad to see you made it out

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563898

File: 1600565736967.gif (172.45 KB, 540x540, tumblr_psj90pTc4A1xlsan6o1_r1_…)

>>41563897
>Looking up from her thoughts as she heard Kari calling out to her, Louise turned to face her with a smile.

Oh! There you are Kari.

>Watching the dino girl wave to her, her wings flapped a little before she let them go flat against her back.


How couldn't I make it here? It's not every day I get asked out to the movies.

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563899

File: 1600566779951.png (1014.4 KB, 936x1580, 490ad566683f8506ae094f2a7920cc…)

>>41563898

Well guess I was just over nervous about you changing your mind or something

>She laughed a little nervously, rubbing the back of her head as they walked over and into the theater


Got the tickets earlier

>She reached in and handed one of them to Louise and stretched a little bit


Can't say I've heard of this movie before though, something called "Bunny And The Devil Warriors"... ? Wonder if it's anything like the Raidou movies....

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563902

File: 1600571337873.png (178.76 KB, 400x344, tumblr_pmffynB2Hc1rv6c48o3_400…)

>>41563899
Why would I change my mind about out on my first date?

>Looking around the theater, her eyes seemed to light up as she stopped to look at the movie posters.


This place is way different from the ones back in New York.

And it's great that you got the tickets ahead of time. I can take care of getting the snacks.

>Taking the ticket, she looked it over before turning to face Kari.


I've never heard about either one of those movies.

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563906

File: 1600576741503.png (188.18 KB, 540x535, anime titty scholar.png)

>>41563834
>Sighing, Chris gets up and stuff the books back in their backpack. The hard work and the effort was also what made it hell on a sickly thing like them. But maybe there was some merit to what this total stranger was telling them. At least on the idea of closer observations.

If you say so.

>Chris had their doubts.

>Though when Will asked what they were doing monitoring people, they decided it'd be best to be open with her least there be another... misunderstanding.

It's part of my studies into my magecraft, Inversion. I can use magic to manipulate the laws of physics in a limited capacity. Mostly by, as the the name suggests, reversing the force in question.

For example, if someone were to throw a ball at me. I could 'Invert' the forces acting on that ball, causing it to travel back on the path it was thrown from right back at the person who threw it at me. Or if I want to simply halt the ball, I can enact a force equal and opposite to what the ball is effected by and thus neutralizing it, causing it to stop and drop harmlessly to the ground.

>works pretty damn well on the wayward baseball or those damned paper wasp things the more bratty students tried to shoot them with.


It works on Meta-quirks too, but I can't just simply wave my hands and stop whatever they're doing. I need to study how their abilities work and calculate what manipulation of physics is required to counter or use their own power against them. And it's through these observations that I'm able to expand the scope of what my magecraft can do little by little. Currently I can only make temporary changes, fleeting moments of altering the world...

One day I hope to enact permanent ones and use that power for people that wish to change things about themselves that would... otherwise requite more costly methods.

>Okay... okay, that should make it clear they're not some peeping tom and it was all in the pursuit of science and self improvement.

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563910

File: 1600608272358.png (56.55 KB, 183x198, no big deal.png)

>>41563882
>"THAT'S, LIKE, HULK-LEVEL [STUFF]."
>Winnie let out a short chuckle, her cheeks growing just a bit pink as J praised her Stand
C-Come on, i-it's not that impressive!

All Of Me just... punches really hard... there's a ton of other Stand Users in my class alone who could easily bring us down, e-even if I could control mine...

>as J explained how busy the others were, Winnie's expression grew a bit awkward for a brief second

>she felt a bit bad over ignoring J, if he was feeling that out of the loop with his other friends
I-It... it can be pretty hard when all your friends have their-...their own stuff going on...

Even Abby's been pretty busy lately with... well, with something. Not really sure what...
>Abby always moved to the beat of her own drum, after all
>though she thought she heard something about working in the infirmary?
>Winnie thought to herself for a second, before just clapping her hands together when she got an idea
Oh! I know!

How about we go out somewhere? Just the two of us!

I don't get to go to the city very often since... w-well... it's a bit intimidating on my own... b-but if it's the two of us, I-I'm sure we could have some fun!

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563911

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>>41563906
>meanwhile!
>inside Will's brain!

<"TOO MANY WORDS!"

<"OH GOD, WAT IS SHE SAYING!?"
<Heheheh... she said expand..."
<"WHAT DO WE SAY! WE CAN'T JUST STAY SILENT!"
<"Relax, everyone. If we just take our time and review her examples, we can-"
<"PANICPANICPANIC!!!"
...

...

...

Sounds neat!
>absolutely none of that had stuck
>except "expand" heheh...
>wait, she also said something about... reversing, right?
>reversing quirks?
>was that it?
So... ya makes stuff into their opposites? Like water into ground?

That is cool! So can ya, like, turn sour candy into sweet candy? I'll never get why sour candy is a thing, so that's awesome!

OH!
>she quickly jumped in front of Chris, holding out her hands to her
Do me! Do me! I wanna know what happens to my quirk!

beat trapped in phone hellCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563912

>>41563910

>”All Of Me just... punches really hard...”

>yeah no shit dude that’s all that Hulk does and he’s still a huge big dick important super guy
>but before J had the time to vocalize that thought, Winnie came straight for the throat

>”How about we go out somewhere? Just the two of us!”


-hwugh?

>why did that thought freeze J’s brain in place? Winnie was just a friend, there’s nothing wrong with hanging out with friends, right? even if your friend happens to be a really cute and sweet and lovable little teddy bear of a girl, nothin weird about that!


UH, Y-YEAH, SURE! I’VE NEVER REALLY GONE OUT INTO THE CITY BY MYSELF EITHER. YOU- YOU GOT ANYTHING IN MIND? I’M UP FOR ANYTHING.

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563913

>>41563912
>Winnie had to stop and think some more at the question
Uhh... w-well, not-...not exactly...

Abby and I don't explore very much; she's a bit shy when it comes to big cities...

A-And last time I went to the city, there was... uhm... there was a slight commotion...

>her body shivered as she remembered the attack at the restaurant, but she tried not to dwell on it very much

>she needed to think of something fun for her and J to do; she was the one to suggest this after all!
Uhh... oh! Actually-!

Th-There's this arcade I've been to once with Abby. We never got to explore it very much because she got stuck in one of the claw machines.

It's right next to a shopping mall too, s-so we could just get something to eat there i-if we need to.

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563916

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>>41563911
>Oh she wasn't listening at all, or maybe Chris said too much. One of the two. Either way, Chris rolled their eyes.

No, I can't change water into dirt, that would be changing it atomic and chemical structure. That would be impossible.

For sweet and sour, I could change how your taste buds perceive the flavors but not the actual candy.

>Then finally Will asked Chris to use her Inversion on her. Chris looks at Wills hands for a moment, then back to Will.


Well, I'd need to know what you can do first before I can actually try...

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>>41563916
>Will blinked as Chris explained how her cool ideas wouldn't actually work
>although didn't that Firestorm guy did what she was talking about?
>she'd seen footage of him turning stuff into other stuff; it wasn't impossible!
>"Well, I'd need to know what you can do first before I can actually try..."
Oh! Right!
>Will looked around, trying to find some object she could use
>but decided to just reach down and pull off her shoe
>holding one hand out, palm facing upwards, she grinned as she held the shoe above it
Watch this!
>she dropped the show onto her hand, and-
>BOYOING~!
>the shoe flew up, up, up straight into the air as soon as it touched her, repulsed by some invisible (but audible) force
Cool, yeah? Like I got springs on my hands!
>...didn't seem like it would be coming down for a while either
I gots this springiness on my feet too!
>she held up her shoe-less foot
It's a bit more annoying, since I can just get thrown into the air if I don't watch my step.

But usually there's a ceiling t' stop me, so it ain't all bad!

beat!thtp80lPBcCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563920

>>41563913

>”A-And last time I went to the city, there was... uhm... there was a slight commotion…”


UH, Y-YEAH…
>J didn’t like the way that Winnie acted about that memory, but he understood it – he shared Janice’s memories, after all, so he remembered the incident practically firsthand
...I, UH, HEARD YOU HELPED A LOT, THOUGH?
>that… would probably help, right?

>regardless, he definitely perked up at the word “arcade”


SHIT, SERIOUSLY? THOSE THINGS STILL EXIST? HELL YEAH, I’M DOWN! I’VE BEEN TRYING TO FIND A NEW PLACE WITH A DDR MACHINE AFTER SOME DIPSHIT BROKE THE ONE HERE.

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563921

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>>41563902
I'm just over nervous, you know? You look great. You're really nice, and- like, I'm just over nervous that maybe I'd make a bad second impression or something, you know?

>She chuckles nervously and rubs the back of her head before hearing that Louise hadn't heard of the Raidou movies


Oh? You've never heard of the Raidou Kuzonoha movies? They're a set of historical fiction films featuring the famous Raidou Kuzonoha, though for some reason Jack Frost always gets top billing over Raidou's actor...

>She looks over to the poster for "Bunny and The Devil Warriors"


Looks like Jack's in this one too, but hopefully he's just a supporting actor, guy gets way too much attention in movies....anyway I heard this one's like...a disaster movie? and like about surviving and stuff.

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>>41563921
Kari we met by you crashing into me while you were practicing flying. I don't think you have to worry about making impressions anymore.

>Reaching up to rub one of her horns, Louise listened to Kari talk about the movies before an idea came to her.


Well....how about we try getting together to watch the movies another night?

>Looking between Kari and the movie poster, she folded her arms with a confused expression on her face.


You think with a title like this it wouldn't be that kind of movie...

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563924

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>>41563923
>Kari blushes and lets out a tiny squeak noise, backing up a little in embarassment

...ehehehe...still....can't believe you'd go out with a crash case like me.

>though! Wow already suggesting another date...? Jeeze...


Oh yeah sounds like tons of fun honestly! Raidou is just kind of the coolest devil summoning detective you could ever think up.

>She states with a bit of a grin before looking over the poster for their film

>A Boy with black hair, blue eyes, and in a trendy looking rabbit themed hoodie held a phone outward on the picture while a white lion stood stalwart behind him, sparks of electricity forming behind the pair alongside a legion of skeleton demons.
>The Logo just at the boy's legs labeled BUNNY and the DEVIL WARRIORS: "LET'S SURVIVE"

You know I'm not sure what to expect

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>>41563924
>Watching he reaction, the dragon girl stood smiling.
<...Cute.
I mean it wasn't that bad of a crash. And we did end up meeting cause of it right?
Besides I used to crash a lot when I was learning how to fly. So you don't have to worry about that.
>Tilting her head, she gave the poster a closer look.
Though I don't know what to expect either.
Ready to go get snacks for the movie?

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563928

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>>41563925

You can grab whatever you want I uh..

>She rubs the side her arm and lets out a soft sigh, eye narrowed a bit


...can't taste much with the way my body is now.

>She pouts a bit and just gently grabs onto Louise's hand


Maybe if you know something that tastes really powerful?

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>>41563928
Powerful taste....

>Looking away as her hand was grabbed, she gazed at the floor.


I'm sorry, I had forgotten about that part. But maybe there is something we can find if we get lucky.

>Gripping Kari's hand a bit tighter, Louise started heading for the concession stand with her.

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563931

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>>41563917
>Watching the shoe rocket up into the skies well beyond what Chris could see, the mage looks up at where the footwear hand gone and back down to Will and her springy hands.
>Chris could only flatly respond.

...That sounds extremely inconvenient to your daily life.

>That's more like a meta-disability then a quirk. And the sound effect... Chris could have sworn they heard that noise before. Was it from one of those old video games Uncle Hogarth played? ...How best to neutralize that though.


Hmmm... well, we can try dampening the uh... springy effect of your hands. Assuming that your hands are actually bouncing objects off and not replying them under some other force like some sort of repulsion field.

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563933

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>>41563930

I mean it's okay, I don't really need food anymore, and I got off light with the taste thing, apparently most greeed have duller vision and hearing than I do. So at least I'll still really enjoy the movie with you.

>She notes outloud, trying to change the subject to a lighter note, biting her lip, distinctly uncomfortable and sensitive about the taste thing

>and also now overthinking "Ah fuck why did I have to bring this up and make a big deal about it... Now she's just going to feel bad about it the whole night, stupid Kari...stupid!"
>she coughed into her hand

I'm a...sorry, if it makes you feel better I *can* still eat it even if I won't taste it.

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>>41563933
Yeah....at least we can enjoy the movie together.

<What was I thinking, she can't taste much except for that seasoning at superburger.


>Mentally punching herself over it, the dragon held onto Kari's hand a bit tighter.


N-No need to tell me sorry. It's my fault I forgot about the taste thing.

So how about we go somewhere else after we see this movie and not get anything to eat here.

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563938

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>>41563935

>Kari squeaked a little feeling the hand tighten and stuttered a bit as they walked forward a bit


I uh..,sure

>She chuckled a little nervously, a bit out of it because it felt kind of like Louise was going out of her way to make her feel better-


You don't have to not enjoy the theater food just because of me though, really.

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563945

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>>41563920
>"I, UH, HEARD YOU HELPED A LOT, THOUGH?"
>Winnie was quick to shake her head
N-Not at all! A-All I could really do w-was call the school...

Albert and Janice were the ones who actually jumped in, a-and fought that... spider thing...
>she was certainly told that she had done the right thing, and Albert and Janice were the hotheads who nearly put the whole school in trouble
>but she still didn't feel like she'd helped; if they hadn't kept that country rock star guy occupied, who knows how many more could've been hurt before help had arrived

>"THOSE THINGS STILL EXIST?"

>Winnie tried to perk back up when J seemed excited for her idea
Y-Yeah! You just gotta know where to look! Th-There's actually quite a few in Metropolis, b-but this one seemed like the best one!

J-Just in terms of game selection alone.
>it had Segasonic
>she was certain she'd seen a Segasonic arcade machine last time
>where the hay else would she find a Segasonic arcade!?!?
...y-you play DDR?

I-I'd have never guessed, j-just looking at you...

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563946

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>>41563931
>"That sounds extremely inconvenient to your daily life."
It totally is!
>Will quickly confirmed
Ya wouldn't believe how many breakfasts I've lost!

Just go through all that trouble of cookin' up some eggs, or even just pourin' me some cereal, and one false move, an'-FWOOP!
>she swung her arm aside to pantomime the object being thrown away
It's gone outta th' window, or splattered all over th' wall!

Ain't a bad way th' wake up in the mornin', at least? Bein' launched against a wall certainly wakes ya up, huh?
>she added jokingly... probably
>and then Chris started speaking in fancy words again
>she understood half of it, at least
Well, accordin' to th' doctors, it gots somethin' to do with my skin?
>she moved her fingers as if trying to ball them up into a fist, but her hand never fully closed in on itself
Like, th' skin's super tight, I think? That's why I can't really make a fist, and why things go boing offa-gwhek!
>thwock!
>the shoe finally submitted before gravity, landing right on Will's head
>it didn't really hurt; it was a very light show, just a bit startling
...offa them.

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>>41563938
It doesn't feel right to enjoy food when someone else with me can't enjoy it themselves.

>Rubbing the back of her neck, she looked around for where the movie they were going to watch was being shown.


I can wait till later to eat something. Besides, it'll give me something to think about for later.

But for right now, we should find the room they're showing the movie in so we don't miss much.
This post was edited by its author on .

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563967

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>>41563947

>Kari couldn't help but pout slightly at Louise's reaction, huffing slightly before she looked up above to the signs above the rooms before spotting their movie


Ah. There it is.

>The sign up above the room lit up brightly with the room's showing schedule

>She states with a tiny bit of resignation, smiling softly to hide any sort of awkward feeling behind it

>Once they'd enter the room, seemed they hadn't even gotten to the trailers yet

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>>41563967
<I said something stupid didn't I?

>Noticing how she huffed, Louise flapped her wings a little before getting them flat against her back.


O-Oh, yeah there's the room.

>Staring up at the sign, she looked at the times and winced slightly seeing how early they were for it.


Well..at least we have time to find a good place to sit right?

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563977

>>41563945

>”...y-you play DDR?”


>J’s expression flattened

>his voice dropped and took on an odd intensity
>not the kind of intensity that made it seem like he was mad at Winnie; the kind that signified that what he was about to say came from the very depths of his soul, that he was speaking with more honesty than anything he had ever said in his life before

HELL YES I DO.

---------

>hell yes he did.

>J slumped back against the bar on the rear of the arcade cabinet, panting for breath, but with a triumphant smile on his face regardless
>there, flashing on the screen after an intense few minutes of cheesy unintelligible J-pop, was his name on the high score list
>granted, only at #5; not ideal, but certainly not bad for a first try with no warmup!
>he still absolutely intended to come back here some other time and take the top spot, but one thing at a time
>for now, he just turned back to look at Winnie with smug satisfaction

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563978

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>>41563977
>Winnie did not play DDR, that much was certain
>truth be told, just the rapidly moving arrows and lights made her feeble brain get all dizzy
>let alone ever considering actually playing the game itself
>watching J go at it himself was already tiring enough
W-Wow, you really are great at this!
>she gave J a little round of applause, looking quite impressed by his breach into the top 5 players
>and quickly stepped forward, handing him a bottle of water
>he really seemed like he could use some hydration
Y-You should really get some rest now, right?

How is anyone supposed to play this more th-than once...

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563979

>>41563978

>J gladly soaked up Winnie’s praise, and also water

>somewhat literally, considering he drank about 2/3 of the bottle in one go and then splashed the rest on his face to cool down

HAHH- YEAH, I THINK – HFF – I THINK I MADE MY POINT.

I’VE BEEN PLAYING IT A LOT EVER SINCE I GOT MY OWN BOD, JUST ‘CAUSE, LIKE… JAN’S A LOT MORE SEDENTARY THAN I AM, I GOTTA HAVE SOMETHING TO BURN OFF ENERGY, Y’KNOW? IT WAS EITHER THIS OR SPORTS OR SOMETHING.

>J let out another heavy exhale as his breath finally evened out


ANYWAYS, I PROVED MYSELF. GO AHEAD AND GIVE ME THE REAL TOUR.

>honestly, J hadn’t really taken the time to look at his surroundings until now – as soon as he set foot through the door, he’d beelined for the big gleaming chrome dance pad, deadset on asserting his dominance over the musical arts

>but it was Winnie’s idea to come here, so he felt he should let her have her fun too

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563980

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>>41563979
>Winnie wasn't taken too aback as J rapidly wore down the bottle; she'd only bought it just in case
>she was just glad to see him already having fun and stuff
Why didn't you choose sports, then?

I-I mean, this looks fun too, but just curious... you seem like a pretty athletic guy! I bet you'd do well there too!

>Winnie was a bit more curious to learn more about J now than she actually was their surroundings

>she just didn't know much about him, all things considered
>clearly there was a lot of hidden layers to find beneath that loud exterior!
>but he still opened the floor for her, so she started moving away from the DDR machine
W-Well, I can't really give a tour; it's technically my first time going past the claw machines.
>Mighty Rocket Arcade wasn't some small room tucked away in a poorly lit back alley
>it was a remarkably large area packed to the brim with all sorts of different gadgets and cabinets, and even had a second floor with more stuff to entertain its patrons
>everything was well organized: claw machines and similar games-of-shady-chances were all located by the entrance, just to egg you into spending a quarter or two more on your way out
>the main floor was definitely the big attraction, with dozens of arcade cabinets new and old, even a handful of rare and imported games all the way from Japan (or just San Fransokyo, but still)
>the second floor, meanwhile, was focused on more physical games, like hoop shots, whack-a-mole, and surprisingly, a whole mechanical bull for those seeking a thrilling challenge
>the arcade was pretty busy too, which for someone of Winnie's stature wasn't the most ideal conditions
>she'd very obviously chosen to wear some higher platform boots that day, but mostly just so she could actually reach the controls on the cabinets
Uhh... let's see... I think we could-
>Winnie stopped, her heart sinking just a little bit
>it was true; the Segasonic cabinet really was there
>but boy, did it have quite a line around it composed of people in all sorts of Sonic paraphernelia
>was there a convention nearby, or something?
Uhhh...
>quick, think of something else!
Oh! H-How about that one!
>she pointed at a rather fancy looking display nearby: a very large flat screen that bent inwards into a "C" shape, engulfing the players in the action
>there were two light guns on their stand, the game clearly being a big shooty/explosion type where you blow up evil not-quite-Brainiac robots
>that seemed like something J could be into, maybe!

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563981

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>>41563946
>Watching the shoe bouncing off Wills head, Chris was about to ask if she was okay. But it seemed shoe was. More importantly, they learned a bit more of how Will's Meta-Quirk worked.

Right, super elastic skin. Shouldn't be too hard. Hold still for a moment...

>All that was left to do is simply try and see if'd work. Chris focused on Wills hands and feet, calculating to what degree to dampen that bouncing. Given how much air time that shoe got, it would be significant.


...

..........

.................

>CLAP!!

>Clapping their hands swiftly, Will could feel a slight tingling in her hands for a moment before the feeling faded just as quickly.
>Roll 1d10 = 5
>1-6 Will's Meta-Quirk was nullified
>7-10 Will now has super stick-to-everything hands and feet

That should do it...? At least for an hour or two.

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563982

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>>41563981
>Will blinked, not really feeling all that different
>she wiggled her fingers, making grabby hands to see if they felt any different
...?
>and blinked, seeing how she could actually close her hands more properly now
Woah! Lookit that!
>and for the ultimate test: Will let herself hop off the ground
>and land without being launched twenty feet ahead
Holy crap! Lookit me! I'm not flyin'!
>she continued to jump very excitedly, and very... not subtly, given her anatomy
I actually gets t' make a fist! That's awesome!

But, wait...
>she stopped, now dangerously looking like she might be thinking
Shouldn't ya made my hands and feet all sticky?
>she looked at her hands, eyebrow raised
I don't feel very sticky...
>then just reached forward, placing her hand right over Chris's chest for a test

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563984

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>>41563982
Well, no. All I really needed to do was nullify the bounce on your skin not make more sti--
>touch

!!!!!!

>If Will hadn't tested their hands already she would have been convinced nothing happened with how far Chris had jumped back.

>For Chris, they were completely flustered by Will sudden touch. Totally out of the blue and nonchalant! Their face was as pink as their hair and their hands were now held up to their chest defensively.

W-what do you think you're doing!?

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563985

>>41563980

>J grimaced. He really should’ve expected that question, it’s a pretty obvious follow-up


IT’S JUST… I DUNNO. I LIKE DOING MY OWN THING, I GUESS.

>that wasn’t even a lie, really! He just wasn’t going into the complexities of his inner emotional and self-esteem issues that caused him to want to do his own thing!

>ANYWAYS LET’S MOVE RIGHT ALONG FROM THAT THOUGHT!
>this place was honestly pretty cool, if not a little plain. Guess in the modern day, being a functioning arcade in the States was by default a unique enough business to not really need its own hook?
>regardless, J gladly followed along beside (definitely not behind, keep those eyes up north J don’t blow this) Winnie, waiting for her to pick out something

>he saw the way that Winnie looked at that weird Sonic game (wait, there were Sonic arcade games?), and the dejected little look in her eye when she saw the crowd of assorted weirdos and furries waiting their turn

>he was already starting to think of something by the time Winnie turned his attention over to the light gun setup, and honestly, that kind of gratuitous action movie violence would be the kind of thing that appeals to J’s pubescent reptile brain
>...but frankly, whatever manual dexterity he had on the DDR machine did not extend to hand-eye coordination
>sure, J was no slouch at The Battles Of Royales, but it was a lot different trying to aim with a mouse versus your actual hands
>and he wasn’t really in any hurry to thoroughly embarrass himself in front of Winnie, especially when he was supposed to be, like, making a good first impression for himself as an individual or something

UHHHHH…

>he awkwardly jerked a thumb over at the Segasonic cabinet


N-NAH, IT’S COOL. YOU WERE WANTING TO PLAY THAT, RIGHT? GO AHEAD, DUDE.

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>>41563984
>when Chris jumped back, Will just blinked, looking down at her hand
>only confused that she didn't stick to her new friend's clothes
>"W-What do you think you're doing!?"
Huh?

Oh, I was just testin' out my sticky hands.
>she casually answered
But they ain't sticky for some reason.

Ya think it's somethin' I gotta, like, practice for?

I ain't ever needs th' practice for my usual powers; they just be that way.
>looking down at her hands, she seemed to distract herself by repeatedly opening and closing them
>before she looked back at Chris, tilting her head slightly as she posed the question:
Why're you all th' way over there anyway?

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563987

File: 1600907863911.png (366.32 KB, 570x559, its not like that.png)

>>41563985
Eh-?
>Winnie jolted a bit as J tried to shift the focus back onto her precious Segasonic experience
>but the line was far from shorter, even with three player co-op
>so she quickly raised her hands and shook her head
O-Oh, no, no, no! I-It's OK!

Th-There's way too many people o-on it right now!

We'd be waiting a-ages! We can just- just try something else for now, a-and come back later!

B-Besides, I invited you, r-right? You should really be the one choosing stuff to do! N-Not just sit around and wait for me!

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563988

>>41563987

>J’s answer was immediate and exceptionally blunt


WE CAN JUST CUT.

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563989

File: 1600909045637.png (503.92 KB, 717x558, nervous.png)

>>41563988
>Winnie just stared at J for a few seconds, taken aback by his suggestion
>but then quickly went back to shaking her head
Wh-What, no! W-We can't do that!

I-I-It's fine! Really! I-I can come back here a-at any time, even if I don't get to play it today!

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563990

File: 1600909134220.png (591.69 KB, 1069x1423, tumblr_p6i2gyzoZZ1rkmkzfo3_128…)

>>41563986
>This girl! Really what kind of barn was she raised in where she thinks it's okay to touch someone's chest like that!!?

Because you touched my chest! I didn't give you permission to do that!

>And she was still lost too! It was like talking to a... a... bag of rocks! Bags, plural, of something, but not rocks...


N-not sticky! I just "turned off" the bounciness! You're not Spiderman!

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563991

File: 1600909549583.png (18.68 KB, 90x160, waiting around.png)

>>41563990
>"Because you touched my chest!"
>Will blinked
Oh, did I? Whoopsie!
>she quickly raised her hands
S-Sorry! I swear I wasn't aimin' for that!

I was just tryin' t' touch, like...
>she pointed at the vague area above her breast, between it and her shoulder
This part? But I don't gots th' best hand-eye coordination!
>she held her hands together, trying to look as apologetic as she possibly could
Really, really sorry! Totally my bad!

>"I just 'turned off' the bounciness!"

>Will quickly went back to looking at her hands
Ya can do that too!? Woah!

You're, like... some kinda super wizard!

Ya could just shut off any supervillain right, no problem! That's so cool!

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563992

>>41563989

NAH, WE PROBABLY COULD. THEY ALL SORTA LOOK LIKE PUSHOVERS, I DON’T THINK ANY OF ‘EM WOULD FIGHT IT. EXCEPT THAT ONE WITH THE KNUCKLES SHIRT, BUT EVEN HE’S A MAYBE.

>J just kept talking, seemingly unaware of just what part of this proposal that Winnie had an issue with


I MEAN, ALTERNATIVELY, MY OTHER IDEA IS I JUST GO INTO THE BATHROOM, MAKE MYSELF LOOK LIKE A GIRL, AND TRY TO SMOOTH TALK OUR WAY TO THE FRONT OF THE LINE. THEY’RE ALL NERDS, THEY’RE PROBABLY VULNERABLE TO THE SIMP BAIT.

I DON’T REALLY WANNA USE THAT ONE, BUT FUCK IT, IF IT’S WHAT YOU WANNA PLAY I CAN DEAL WITH IT.

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563993

File: 1600912495748.png (89.76 KB, 148x315, thats not safe.png)

>>41563992
>the more J talked, the more nervous Winnie got
>her brain could hardly even process his alternative suggestion
>she quickly shook her head, objecting once again to any line-cutting shenanigans
N-N-No! That's- That's not-! I-I-It's just not right!

Th-Those people were here first, a-and they want to play the game as much as I do!

J-Just because I want to play it d-doesn't mean we just get to push ahead of them! That's... that's wrong!

>J definitely had layers to himself that she was slowly getting to know

>unfortunately, it seemed like some of those layers weren't the most honorable
L-...Let's just go find something else to do, O-OK...?

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563995

>>41563993

>J flinched and shrunk in on himself as soon as it registered what Winnie was actually saying, and just how upset she actually was

<nice job, dipshit, you’re already blowing it. congrats.

AH, I- S-sorry?

>his eyes darted away, suddenly looking very uncomfortable


you’re – um. you’re right. sorry. i wasn’t thinking. you just – looked pretty bummed and i know you like sonic stuff, so, i dunno. sorry.

>this would be something altogether new to Winnie, in whatever little time she’d known J as his own individual instead of just that thing on Janice’s shoulder:

>J looking genuinely ashamed

let’s – yeah. let’s just find something else.

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563997

File: 1600979322837.png (396.27 KB, 650x541, glad everything worked out.png)

>>41563995
>Winnie wasn't really expecting that kind of reaction from him either
>and it's not like she was mad at J, just... surprised and a little disappointed
>but now he looked really sorry, so she couldn't hold on to that disappointment for much longer
It's-... it's OK...
>she gave him a tiny smile in the hopes it'd perk him up, even just a little bit
We all s-stop thinking every now and then, r-right?
>then focused back on the arcades around them, trying to think of something else to suggest
>J didn't seem all that enthusiastic over the light guns, so maybe a racing game would be more his type?
>so she pointed at this off-road bike cabinet that was sparsely enough populated that they wouldn't need to wait very long

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563998

File: 1600985436584.jpg (225.68 KB, 524x807, 0aa1040c8fdff83920df22c12a4098…)

>>41563972
let's try to hang towards the back, make sure you've got room for your wings and there's room for me to move around if I lose focus on not being a dinosaur.

>Kari notes rubbing the back of her head a bit as she went to sit down in one of the back seats


Wonder what sorta trailers there'll be...

>One of the trailers actually started playing the moment Kari spoke up

>"In A WORLD where everything's flip turned upside down, only one man will be able to become...The Fresh Prince"

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41563999

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>>41563998
That sounds like a good plan to me Kari. I mean I need room for my tail too and I think there might be holes in the backs of some seats.

>Feeding her tail through the hole of one of the seats, Louise sat down next to her.


Dunno, there might be something interesting to see another time.

>Watching the trailer, she raised an eyebrow in confusion before Looking over to her date for a moment.


...Not what I expected there to be a trailer for.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564000

>>41563997

>well, okay, maybe it wasn’t totally blown

>J did in fact perk up a little at the smile Winnie gave him, and simply nodded along as Winnie pointed out the racing game
>he wasn’t really super into racing, but how hard could it really be? It’s just about being faster than everyone else, right? Surely, he’d be great at this!

------
>8th place
>okay so maybe he wasn’t great at this
>J was a simple young man
>when the game told him to go fast, he was going to grab the throttle and crank that bitch like Soulja Boy, no matter how many times he plowed headlong into the wall of a turn because why would he use the brakes, you’re supposed to go fast??

>this didn’t really translate to success in a race, especially against other players

>but that’s fine! J’s pride wasn’t wounded! He wasn’t mad! He wasn’t slumped back on the fake motorcycle, pouting at the screen!

...WELL THAT WAS STUPID.

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564001

File: 1601002633156.png (111.93 KB, 480x480, Schoolr.png)

>>41563991
>Well for once she wasn't too far off. Super wizard though? Why did she have to make it sound so silly? That said, it was kind of nice to be praised...

I mean, I am a mage, I do magic. Though I'm still studying and have a lot to learn...

In theory that's what I'll be able to do though as far as a career in heroics goes.

>Assuming she had the mana for it. Chirs' reserves were growing bit by bit as they used their magecraft, though it wasn't at a desirable pace. If they had to fully exert themselves, Chris would only last several more seconds then they could have in the past before being spent... But seconds count in a battle.

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564002

File: 1601004888393.jpg (88.29 KB, 600x600, 0ed44614219d97b89303b59eabff49…)

>>41563999

>Kari blinks and tilts her head


I mean who knows really, maybe a gritty Fresh Prince reboot could be good?

>She pauses and raises a finger


...No, no that really does sound absurd.

>The next trailer started playing, the rating PG13, approved for general audiences

>"You've seen the shows, the movies, and the toys...but now that the cat's out of the bag, have you heard the full story about the War For Cybertron? Join us with interviews with autobots and a select few decepticons, learning their perspectives and opinions on their time warring in secret here on Earth. Seen here for the first time are exclusive interviews with Megatron, and the massive colony city bot Metroplex. Find out the truth in; 'The Operation's Over, Dragon had Lunch"

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>>41564002
It really does doesn't it. Makes you wonder who comes up with things like that doesn't it.

>Holding up a hand, she poked her chin a little in thought.


Oh an interview movie about the cybertronians? Makes me wonder if they'll make more of these in the future.

Though...I do have questions about that subtitle. Dragon had Lunch?

>Going quiet as the next trailer started, she shifted in her seat a little.


>" 'Yo Joe!' A war cry that sends evil doers running in fear and rallies allies of justice to fight for honor. But have you ever wondered where do their respective code names come from? How they were requited in the first place? Find out as we take a trip to Joe HQ in: 'Tread the snake: Reflections of Joes' "

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564007

File: 1601155888889.png (56.55 KB, 183x198, no big deal.png)

>>41564000
>at least J wasn't alone at the end of the race
>while more careful than him, Winnie wasn't very good at racing games
>except that one racing game with all the animals and Noah that she's pretty sure she didn't just dream up
I-It was pretty hard, huh?
>she let out a small chuckle
I think we might've picked a more... complicated course by accident...
>there were a lot of very complicated turns and jumps, so maybe?
Maybe Track Souls j-just isn't our game.

B-But that trick you pulled off over the river was really cool!

Maybe you just need a little practice, a-and you could ace it!

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564008

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>>41564001
>"I mean, I am a mage, I do magic."
>Will's eyes widened, looking very impressed
Woah, really? That's so sick!

Does that mean you have a flying broom?

Those look cool as heck! I wish I had a flying broom!

I'd try to, like, duct tape a skateboard onto it! And then I coulds skate in the air!

How rad would that be!?

>despite asking the question, she was very quick to change the subject

You're lookin' to be a hero then?

That's great! I gots my brother doing the same!

It's a pretty stressful thing to go for!

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564009

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>>41564006

Oh I think like, the cover up on Transformers was called Operation Hungry Dragon or something

>Taking stock of the next trailer she hummed a bit to herself


I heard Riderman was a Joe briefly, something about meeting a guy named Chuckles in Tahiti.

>She hums a bit and smiles softly


Oh I think we're at the last couple before the movie starts...

>Rating PG-13

>The trailer just shows a bright purple light shine before showing a cross eyed, Dathomirian holding a light saber
>Before a logo flashes, titled "Dennis: A Star Wars Story"

...what.

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564010

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>>41564009
....That's the weirdest name choice I've heard so far for something like that.

>Turning to watch the G.I. Joe trailer, she folded her arms a little.


He was? I wonder any other Riders did something like that. Maybe you can tell me more about the others in the future...

>Blinking at the Dathomirian with a lightsaber, Louise just sat there confused,


You ever heard of this guy?

Yuri Takamori!RpQzSCoUtsCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564012

File: 1601248852998.png (127.34 KB, 473x473, bbbf936.png)

<"Yuri, Arthur, pair up."

>Icewater shot through Yuri's veins, followed by a sort of terrified elation.

>Just fifteen seconds ago, Yuri had been only half conscious in her history class. She knew in some distant way that they'd been discussing the American Civil War, and how the Battle of Gettysburg had been a lynchpin moment in history. Some piece of her, a galaxy away, was vaguely aware of the teacher describing their next assignment. The other part was aware that her half-lidded eyes were on Arthur's back in the seat in front of her.

>But the moment she'd been given an excuse to talk at length with Arthur? The boy she'd been crushing on ever since their brief encounter outside him and Lance's dorm? In an instant, Yuri had gone from the twilight zone between sleep and wakefulness to alert enough to land an airplane.


>She'd been handed an excuse on a silver plate, but now that it was here Yuri had no idea what to say. Come on, just say something. Anything!


>But it didn't come. For the moment, all she could do was stare at Arthur's back (or face, had he turned around) and wrestle for something to say. But at least she wasn't having a panic attack. Yet.

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564013

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>>41564010

No, no I've never heard of Dennis. I mean I'm not exactly a huge Star Wars buff but, jesus this seems weird.

>She blinks and tilts her head


Looks like Darth Maul but without the tattoos? ...and a purple light saber? Is he a Jedi then?
>She scratches her neck in confusion and laughs gently to herself

oh hey, the movie's starting.

>The movie itself is about a young boy gaining the ability to summon demons using his cellphone and facing off against a cult set to end the world


>He and his allies slowly grow closer and closer through out the movie...before a majority die towards the end. But after saving the world...via summoning Lucifer, he makes a deal to restore the world to the way it was before the apocalypse.

>All the characters are alive again, but how will life go on from here?

Arthur Goulding!Ren/VL7f/QCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564014

File: 1601250285151.png (233.43 KB, 613x527, Pokerface.png)

>>41564012

<"Yuri, Arthur, pair up."


>Mentally, Arthur groaned.


>It's not that he had any particular grievance with his partner, it was more that the mere concept of having a partner to do work meant he had to interact with people. People that he hadn't chosen to interact with. Hypothetically he could be set across the greatest person he'd ever meet in his life, and they'd bestow upon him the secrets to true happiness and enlightenment and Arthur would still be annoyed at being forced to interact with the fucker.


>A distant voice in his head echoed out with unfortunately very real points. Namely that he didn't know shit about the American Civil War and that he needed to pass this class in order to ensure that he had blissful free time and wasn't spending them on resits.


>One begrudging thanks to the voice later, the scraping sound of a chair turning around briefly echoed through the class as Arthur turned to look at his new partner. Normally, he'd already be worried because they were a girl, but this one seemed familiar. There was only one situation where he'd recognise a girl that Lance hadn't already met, and this one definitely wasn't tanned.


>Fortunately, his brain managed to click and he remembered.


...You're the one that Lance asked for help, right? I remember seeing you come out of his room.

>This wasn't quite enough to assuage his fears, Lance was living social lubricant and could make friends with nearly anybody regardless of how nice they were to other people, but it was a good start.


>Good enough for Arthur to continue the conversation, though maybe that was more out of desperation than anything.


You probably know more about the Civil War than I do, since you were born here, and stuff.

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564015

File: 1601252161356.jpg (306.2 KB, 787x1100, __natsuki_and_yuri_doki_doki_l…)

>>41564008
>Chris' eye twitched ever so slightly at the mention of flying brooms.

I do not have a flying broom, no.

>Curse those foul books finding their way into the minds of the everyman, if Chris had to hear someone say "wingardium leviosa" again, they'd make them fall into the sky.

>Thankfully Will was already switching topics to things unrelated to fictional witches, made up wizards, and the absurd notions of needing a small stick to cast magic.

I am indeed, though I wouldn't say it's all to stressful... It simply must be done, I have other goals riding on being able to become stronger.

>Her brother was looking to be a hero? Was it someone in the classes with them? Or maybe one of the others perhaps.


Who is your brother?

Yuri Takamori!RpQzSCoUtsCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564016

File: 1601255070877.png (1.31 MB, 1200x1120, Officialddlcstickers_5b76d9_72…)

>>41564014
>Oh thank god. Arthur spoke first. Not only did this mean that Yuri didn't have to be the one to speak up first, but it also meant that Arthur didn't find her too repulsive to even speak to. The first hurdle had been cleared!

"Thi... Third generation immigrant. Yes."
>Yuri nodded for just a second too long before realizing that Arthur had also asked a question before that one.

"Mhm. He needed some assistance with an English assignment. Assumed I did well with English, and managed to guess correctly."

>Yuri flinched


"I mean! That's... not to boast about my English prowess or anything but..."

>The gears of Yuri's mind ground and skipped with the effort of finishing that sentence before coming to a halt. She was about to let her anxiety turn her into a motormouth again, wasn't she?


"Y... Yes. We've met once before."

>Was she blushing? It felt like Yuri was blushing. Was that going to make her look like an even bigger imbecile than she'd already managed?

Arthur Goulding!Ren/VL7f/QCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564017

File: 1601255993466.png (134.7 KB, 395x430, Waitingaround.png)

>>41564016

>It was coming back, Lance bragging about not failing his English, the girl helping him out. Hell, he even had flashes of their minor confrontation after she left. Arthur didn't quite recall her being so...stuttery but maybe that was long forgotten meetings talking.


Rrrright. Well, rather you than me. I know him too well so he thinks he can get away with not listening if I try to teach him anything.

>Arthur leaned back in order to grab his workbook and his notes, bringing them around to occupy a portion of Yuri's desk. His eyes briefly flitted up to scan her, to see that she was still there.


>It was only dawning on him that she was...well, decently attractive. And she had yet to call him a manlet or come onto him with a level of aggression that Don Lothario would sneeze at. Arthur fidgeted uncomfortably, people were far too much of a gamble for his blood.


>The voice came back, gently urging him forward. He needed to succeed, did he not? He had a goal in mind. He couldn't falter because he didn't know anything about one measly continent's history. Fulfil the bargain, get back to work.


>Outwardly, Arthur seemed to wince, but quickly pulled himself back to whatever passed for normal.


Well, that gives you a leg up on me, I arrived here last year. The only thing I know about it is that it was about slavery and the people who didn't want that won.

>Regardless of whether or not he trusted this interaction with her, or whatever reason she might have for seeming so off kilter, the fact remained that he needed her information and she was stuck with him. The sooner it was over and done with, the better.

Winnie & Will!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564018

File: 1601263056512.png (39.92 KB, 168x159, happy to be here.png)

>>41564015
>Will was surprised at how casual Chris sounded
>everything she'd heard from the hero course made it seem like a very demanding and stressful thing to take
>but a lot of those stories did come from upperclassmen, so maybe she just hadn't reached the really hard parts?
>"Who is your brother?"
Oh!

He's Lou! Lou Paige? Maybe you's heard the name before; he's a bit of a celebrity 'round here!

Maybe you seens him too? Kind of a big, bulky guy? Black hair, looks kinda grumpy most of the time?

Tends to stick his nose in whenever someone's having a fight, or getting bullied. He's kinda doin' the hero deal already, just on a smaller scale!

Yuri Takamori!RpQzSCoUtsCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564019

File: 1601310243843.png (530.1 KB, 960x960, Yurifull1.png)

>>41564017
>Yuri had expected Arthur to be aloof; to be quiet and reserved. But now that she was actually seeing it in person (especially that little wince) Yuri felt what little nerve she had slip. If he was so quick to write off talking to his own roommate, what chance
>He just wanted this entire thing to be over with to get away from her didn't he?

<"Relax, Yuri, he could have just had a momentary cramp. You came in knowing he was aloof. This is your chance to start establishing rapport! Just stay on-task and pretend you're just talking to Vespa or Meredith..."

>Yuri took a breath that was just a little deeper than normal and responded.

"There are those who insist that the war was merely a battle over the rights of each individual state, but more often than not they're Confederate sympathizers simply trying to avoid the ugly realities of it all."

<"God his hair is so gorgeous..."

Arthur Goulding!Ren/VL7f/QCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564020

File: 1601311805368.png (171.09 KB, 470x516, Creepy.png)

>>41564019

Yeah, that seems about right...

>Arthur trailed off, starting to scan through his own notes. It's not like he had any real frame of reference for what the other side could be anyway. The only contact he'd had with the South of America was...well, moving on.


>As Arthur began to pour over his notes, he felt the creeping gnawing horror of awkward silence crawl across his back. Even people who don't like talking can feel the slow crushing pressure of a poor social situation weigh across the entirety of their being. More fool him for beginning a conversation instead of just working in complete and total silence as was expected of him.


>He felt it run across him more than ever, long spindly tendrils of sheer embarrassment poking into him. Begging him to say something, anything!


...The English Civil War was about how the country should be ruled.

>Arthur blurted out, though his version of blurting out was rather more sedate than one would expect. Less a loud burst of surprising noise and more the fact that it came out very quickly and suddenly.


That was back when...when the monarchy was more of a force in government. Some people didn't like that, and there was a war.

>Oh it was awkward, it was uncomfortable but Arthur managed to speak. He managed to put a foot forward in actually discussing something instead of letting the room lull into awful, terrible discomfort.


>Distantly he felt a sense of amusement within the back of his mind, but he banished that back to whence it came. It made no attempt to fight it, only waving away his irritation.

Yuri Takamori!RpQzSCoUtsCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564023

File: 1601347535729.png (441.66 KB, 750x750, 1b5c83d0b1d511f15b4f571cada872…)

>>41564020
>To Arthur, that may have been an awkward, bumbling attempt to keep any kind of conversation at all going.
>But to Yuri, it was one of the most enrapturing things she'd ever heard.

>The vague generalities of what he had to say. The hint of melancholy Yuri swore she could hear in Arthur's delivery. They all spoke of a riveting tale of strife! The heart wrenching story of countryman turned against countryman! In only a second, Yuri had gone from fidgeting with her hair to elbows on her desk, leaning into Arthur, and more symbolically, the conversation itself.

>Needless to day, Arthur had Yuri's full, rapt attention.

"I've only ever heard of the English Civil War in passing. But with a description like that one, I simply must hear more."

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564030

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>>41564013
I'm not much of a fan either but this still feels off to me.

>Reaching up to scratch her horn a little, she thought about it.


Also I think purple was only for that one actor for those movies they had years ago...

>Shaking her head after thinking about it, Louise focused on the movie.


>Watching how the boy made a deal to bring back those that he lost. Folding her arms, Louise looked over to Kari for a moment before going back to focusing on the end of the movie.


....

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564038

File: 1601412635564.png (85.12 KB, 215x268, very awkward.png)

>Mettral had pretty much looked all over
>it wasn't like her apartment had many hiding spaces to begin with
>but she'd turned it inside and out at least twice now, and it still hadn't turned up
Where the hell is that sock!?
>she fumed, wondering if it had stayed behind on the laundromat during her last trip
>or if it had simply evaporated into the shadow dimension like every other damn sock she had

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564039

File: 1601413271446.png (198.66 KB, 519x312, Wait, There's HOW Many Jellybe…)

>>41564038
>as Mettral continued to roam her tiny apartment, she'd soon hear the click of the doorknob as the front door swung open
>Crowley stepped through, looking a bit weary but nonetheless pleased with himself

Hey, I'm back! I-er...

>he stopped his greeting when he saw that the apartment was a bit of a mess, and that Mettral was not in as good a mood as he was

>he looked around for a moment, with a confused look on his face, before asking cautiously

Is everything OK...?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564040

File: 1601413677609.png (164 KB, 496x425, raging fury.png)

>>41564039
>Mettral had gotten used to the door opening up by someone else's hand surprisingly quickly, all things considered
>Crowley had proved himself a very trustworthy roommate, also considering how long she spent away from her home
>she was still a very independent soul, so she wasn't going to change her schedules around just to meet with his
No, nothing's OK!
>she quickly barked, stopping right after to take in a breath
>and vaguely motioned at the one sock she had next to her
I keep losing socks! Every freakin' time! There's no way this is normal!
>she huffed, placing her hands on her hips
I'm startin' to think I have some creepo stalker who somehow keeps stealin' them when I take them for a wash!

Must have some kinda sock-related powers, or somethin'! Disgusting! Really befitting of such a bottom-feeding pervert with a goddamn sock fetish!

>she swung the closet door shut, letting out another huff

>took in a deep breath, turning back Crowley
OK, OK, I'm cool now... just needed that outta my system.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564041

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>>41564040
>Crowley had little to say as Mettral went on her tangent
>it was pretty clear to him by now that she had a temper, and he was careful to try and avoid inciting it as much as he could, although that wasn't as easy as he would like
>so he opted to just let her get all her anger out over this before saying anything, while also keeping his earlier thoughts to himself

Alright, well...maybe we could check around outside? If someone did sneak in maybe they're still around somewhere?

I mean, you already looked around everywhere here, right?

>not that there was much to look over, all told

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564042

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>>41564041
>Mettral let out another gruff huff
I was joking.

I don't actually believe I have someone stealing my socks, man!

>she walked over to the small table in the center of the room, simply taking a seat down on the floor

Besides, I searched outside already.

Whether I lost them or not, then it was at the laundromat. It's probably still there, just to get bundled into someone else's laundry.

Whatever... I'll just go with mismatched socks. If it works, it works; I don't gotta dress up for no one.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564043

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>>41564042
>Crowley probably should've guessed that Mettral was joking, but he was still getting used to city life
>considering just how many people were living here, it felt like anything was possible
>some weirdo sneaking into the apartment to steal her socks?
>sure, not even the strangest thing he heard that day

>regardless, once Mettral sat down, he took a seat across from her, hoping he could help alleviate her bad mood


Well, I've got some good news to balance out the bad...

It took longer than I'd hoped, but I actually got a job today!

>he said this with a hopeful smile, thinking that would be what Mettral wanted to hear

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564044

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>>41564043
OK.
>Mettral rather lazily answered
That's neat.
>she reached for a bag of salty treats she kept on the table
Not sure why you bothered; ain't you here just temporarily?
>a shrug
Well, whatever. Guess you're just a busybody, then.

What'cha got anyway? Don't remember seeing anyone nearby looking for help.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564045

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>>41564044
>Crowley's smile faded a bit after Mettral's less-than-enthused response, not really sure how to handle that
>he thought she'd be happy that he was bringing in some extra income to make up for him being there, and yet she just didn't seem to care
>what was with that?
>still, he answered her, albeit a little less energetically than earlier

It's at a cafe. It's a bit further in the city, but me and Whisper can make it there easily enough. The pay isn't great but it should help with rent and everything.

>he rubbed the back of his neck, wondering if he was doing something wrong here, for some reason


Yeah, I'm not going to be here forever, but I don't know how long I will be. And I don't feel right just staying here without helping out in some way. So I just thought it'd be a good idea to bring in some money.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564046

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>>41564045
>Mettral just munched on her snacks as Crowley explained things
Alright, well, good for you.

You didn't really have to; there's a reason this place looks the way it does, you know?

I'm hardly ever here, so rent's not that big of an issue.

But if you wanna pitch in, I won't complain at all. S'nice to see some initiative, I guess.

>she then raised an eyebrow as she looked at him

You sure you can hold a job and do the heroing thing?

Seems like it's just adding stress onto your shoulders, to be honest.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564047

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>>41564046
>Crowley was now more confused than worried after Mettral's reply
>her seeming apathy towards putting money into her living space raised a lot of questions, and mentioning that she was "hardly ever there" suggested that she was more interested in being a hero than just...living
>and considering he was pretty sure she was never without her outfit that seemed apparent already
>at her question, he looked unsure for a moment, before replying with a nervous smile

W-Well...I was lucky enough back home to work for someone pretty easy-going, so I'm not sure just yet exactly how it'll go...but I'm sure it'll be fine! I'll figure it out!

Either way, it'd be nice to add to this space a little more, don't you think? Like...a proper bed!

>he paused, looking over at the small living space near them


Or...a mattress, even!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564048

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>>41564047
>Mettral's eyebrow only raised further as she slowly glanced around
...where do you plan on putting it, exactly?
>she asked, pretty sure that even the smallest of beds would take up a quarter of the entire apartment
Shit, you've never lived in one of these micro-apartments, have you?
>she snorted
I dunno what kinda mansions they got up in "Arko-ham" or whatever, but if you have any other plans to spruce up this place, you better start thinking small.

I suppose getting you your own futon would at least be a priority, so you don't have to sleep in the closet anymore.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564049

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>>41564048
>Crowley looked back to Mettral with a surprised expression again, just maintaining his confusion every time she spoke
>it was like they just had totally different thought processes

Wha...n-no, I meant for you. I meant you could get a mattress or something.

I mean, there isn't a point in me getting something like that for me, is there? It's not like I can take it with me when I go.

And you are letting me stay here just because I asked nicely, so why shouldn't I get something to repay you?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564050

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>>41564049
>Mettral just kinda stared at Crowley for a few seconds, clearly just as confused as he was
>"So why shouldn't I get something to repay you?"
...'cause I didn't ask?
>she answered as if that was the most obvious thing in the world to her
I mean, I'm flattered you're considering it, but I really don't need anything from you.

If you really want to, I can direct you to my OneFan and you can just give me money to support me, but...
>she shrugged her shoulders
I really don't need your charity? So you really don't have to worry about repaying me or anything; I offered to let you stay because I had the ability to do so. Not because I expect anything in return.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564051

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>>41564050
>now Crowley again wondered if he had said or done something wrong
>he knew that some people didn't like the concept of charity, that they viewed it as insulting or a blow to their pride
>he had been taught that it was best to make the offer no matter what, but not force it on someone if they weren't willing to receive it
>it didn't make him very happy, however
>he hated the idea of basically freeloading off of someone who didn't seem to have much to give herself

I-I know, I was just...

>he averted his eyes off to the side, now really not sure what to say or do here


...never mind.

>...also, what was a OneFan?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564052

File: 1601421635054.png (377.54 KB, 599x558, that doesnt look good.png)

>>41564051
>Mettral tilted her head slightly, not really getting why Crowley was acting so weird
>did she say anything wrong?
>she couldn't begin to guess what
>and she didn't really care, the more she thought about it
OOOOOOK, well, it's nice to hear you got a job, to circle back 'round.

Just, y'know, try not to let that affect the hero stuff. You're in a new turf; it'd be pretty embarrassing if you slipped up on your big debut because you were... I don't know, tired from scrubbing all the tea cups, or whatever.

As long as you don't make a fool out of yourself, I guess you should be good.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564053

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>>41564052
>Crowley nodded slowly at Mettral's reminder, at this point assuming it'd be better to just drop the line of thinking and move on

Y-Yeah, I know.

>he lifted his head to answer her, still looking a little unhappy, but trying to simply ignore it and press on


If worse comes to worse, Whisper can take over for me and handle most of the heavy lifting. But I don't think it'll come to that.

...speaking of my debut, how exactly are we going to start with that? How does this work around here?

I could patrol my entire town by myself every night, but there's a lot more ground to cover here...

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564054

File: 1601428317442.png (196.5 KB, 540x639, tumblr_pglgoai2nD1wsxiowo1_540…)

>>41564018
>Lou Paige... wait a minute, Chris had heard of that name before here and there before.

I've heard his name, but that's about it.

>Yet another person that was on Chris' list of research subjects they never got around to investigating properly.


I suppose you wish to follow in his footsteps as well?

>Not that Chris was sure she could given her... condition. Then again, if she could bounce things like a shoe that far, maybe an open palmed slap from could send a person soaring though the air too...

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564060

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>>41564053
>Mettral's blasé posture quickly shifted
>a grin appeared on her face as she sat up straighter at the opportunity to play mentor
Good question!

Short answer: you're not patrolling the whole city. Unless you've got super-speed in your arsenal, that's simply impossible!

The trick with big cities is, ironically enough, to start out small. You take a map if the city, and cut it up into easily digestible zones.

You'll only be able to patrol one zone, maybe two if you feel crazy, and you shift around which zone you patrol each day.

The key to being a successful big city hero is: connections!
>she aimed a finger at Crowley, seemingly just for emphasis
Over time, you'll make yourself known around your patrol areas.

Business owners, civilians, they'll come to know you and, hopefully, trust you. That's when you start handing out contact information!

The truth is, unlike a dinky little town, you can't just leap from rooftop to rooftop, and stumble into all crime in a single night by yourself.

You need to follow the tips you're given, or keep an ear out for the police dispatch, and sometimes, just listen to where your gut is telling you to go!

But you won't get there in just one night, that much is inevitable. It's a constant process. I've been doing this gig for close to a decade now, and I still have areas of the city I've yet to get a foot in!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564061

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>>41564054
>as soon as Chris asked the question, Will visibly flinched
>her usual loose and chill demeanor grew a lot more awkward now that she was forced to think about that
W-Well... I dunno!

Being a hero was just Lou's dream since he was just a kid... follow in dad's footsteps, an' all...

But...
>her face twisted into a frown
...if both of us decided t' be heroes, I'm pretty sure big sis would have a heart attack...

>she shook her head slightly, and tried to move away from the clearly-heavy subject for her the best way she knew how

>but giving Chris a very wide (if forced) smile, and turn the question around
I'm still decidin' what I want to do! Is all!

How 'bout you? You followin' someone's footsteps too, or jus' doin' it for doin' it?

Arthur Goulding!Ren/VL7f/QCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564062

File: 1601485099871.png (146.02 KB, 617x375, Uhhh.png)

>>41564023

Well, okay.

>That was a surprisingly strong reaction to some trivia about England. Frankly, Arthur hadn't expected anybody to care about some ancient history from somewhere not even related to where they grew up. Given the answer she gave, there was even the tiniest flicker of suspicion that she was even being genuine.


>Nevertheless, in for a penny, in for a pound. Even if there was the possibility this was some teen movie-esque prank, Arthur couldn't just let the conversation die again on a request for more info. It'd be impolite, more than anything.


Parliament was kind of...optional, back then? The monarch could summon it at their leisure but they didn't have to have them. And the king at the time decided he was going to rule without them because he didn't like that they had enough power to stop him from doing things.

>Arthur's brow furrowed as he racked his brain.


There were also some arguments about religion, I think? I don't really remember, it was years ago when I learned it.

>And as he talked, Arthur learned the double edged sword that was conversation for conversation's sake. He could feel the attention on him, even if it was just one person. Somebody paying attention to him in any capacity caused the hot prickly sensation of discomfort begin to roll around in his stomach.


>Rock. Hard place. And one was far harder to sit through than the other.


It's not really as dramatic as the American one. Though, it did lead to Christmas getting banned after Parliament won...

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564063

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>>41564060
>well at least Mettral was enthusiastic about this, which was very encouraging
>Crowley listened intently as she laid out her plan for patrols, which he could instantly understand
>focusing the patrols to certain areas when they could only cover so much ground was the sensible way to accomplish this
>although a part of him wondered just how much ground he could cover in one night, but he hadn't really gotten used to swinging and climbing these much taller buildings yet, so he didn't let his hopes get too high
>at the mention of giving contact information, he seemed to hesitate for a second

Wait, you mean...my phone number or something?

Isn't that risking my identity getting out?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564064

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>>41564063
>Mettral blinked, returning to her rather confused look she had earlier
Well, yeah? How else would people hit you up?

Unless you're some kind of billionaire who can afford all sorts of high-tech shit, you have to rely on the good will of the people.

You can't play the brooding mystery loner here; you need connections. Make yourself visible, and get folks to know you!

Otherwise, you're better off just picking one area to patrol and stick to it, I guess.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564065

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>>41564064
>Crowley still looked a bit uneasy at the notion of giving out his personal info to strangers, especially for superhero-related work
>but he couldn't exactly get a second phone for that, especially not right now, so it was probably all he had

...I guess as long as I disguise my voice for any numbers I don't recognize, it should still work...

>and maybe get a new phone when he got back home


But aside that, I can handle that! ...might be a lot more people to remember but I should get used to it!

>his optimism was probably a bit unfounded but he wasn't going to back down on this job


So, what about the areas we pick? Should we both patrol the same space at the same time, or split up?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564066

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>>41564065
>Mettral tilted her head, still looking a bit confused by Crowley's trepidation towards something that just sounded so normal to her
>but he'd changed the subject, so she wasn't gonna leave him hanging
I dunno. Up to you.

I'm not really used to having a sidekick, but I'm not against it.

Might help people get comfortable with you if you're seen alongside someone they already recognize and trust!

>she shrugged

Or I just give you one of my other zones, if you prefer to work solo. I'll understand that.

You're the guest, so the choice is up to you.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564067

File: 1601503668040.png (72.02 KB, 244x273, Aww, come on, you don't really…)

>>41564066
>Crowley hummed slightly in thought
>he was used to working alone - Whisper even more so, and he had to wonder if she'd really be OK with constantly working alongside Mettral
>she did clearly care about being a hero and handling this right, but he still suspected Whisper had some reservations

...it might be better if we stick together. At least for a bit, just until I get used to this place.

>which could be a while

>he still couldn't fathom just how big San Fransokyo was
>he still looked a little embarrassed as he admitted this

It's...really a lot to take in, even now. I dunno how people can adjust to everything around them when there's so much...

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564068

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>>41564067
>Mettral nodded as he decided to stick together
>"I dunno how people can adjust to everything around them when there's so much..."
Easy; most people don't!

Humans are creatures of habit after all. They'll just stick around their own small bubbles, only occasionally venturing out into the rest of the city they live in.

Weirdos like us are the exception! It's our job to know the ins and outs of our city!

>she grinned, waving a hand at him

Trust me, it only looks intimidating at first!

When I first arrived, I was pretty overwhelmed myself! But now, this place is unequivocally home to me!

>reaching forward, she gave him a friendly fist bump on the shoulder

At least you have the benefit of having one heck of a tour guide!

I didn't have anyone showing me the ropes.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564069

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>>41564068
>Crowley jolted slightly at the bump, but otherwise kept up his happy demeanor
>he was learning quite a bit just from talking to her, so he was feeling more confident about this all the time

Y-Yeah, I get what you mean! And I really do appreciate you helping me like this!

>his curiosity getting the better of him, he felt the need to go off of Mettral's last comment and just ask:


How did you get settled in here? It sounds like it took a lot of work...

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564070

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>>41564069
>Mettral nodded her head again, then blinked at Crowley's question
>it really only made sense he'd ask that, so she was pretty casual with answering it
Yeah, it was pretty tough.

I mean, I was homeless for a few years when I first got here, so that's no cake walk.

I guess luck had a lot to do with it? I'm a stubborn rat, and I worked hard to get myself out of the hole I was in, of course!

Buuut I'd be lyin' if I said genetics didn't help me out.
>she motioned a bit vaguely at herself
This bod helped me get opportunities I don't think I'd have gotten otherwise!
>and not so vaguely explained what she meant
I did some modelling work early in life, usually as a ring girl around whatever promotion took me in.

Work wasn't bad, money wasn't perfect, but it was enough to get a roof over my head. And y'know, twirling along some people in the business helped me get some free workouts!

When I started the hero thing, I pretty much left that behind me. San Fran's nice to its heroes, so it ain't hard to stay afloat as I am.

Not exactly a rag to riches story, yet, but that's the summarized version of it.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564073

>>41564007

UHHH.. TRICK. RRRRIGHT.
>that was definitely a more flattering way to put the events that had occurred than “J was going too fast and hit a stray invisible bit of geometry in a weird way causing the game’s physics engine to spazz the fuck out for a few seconds”!
>if you do something cool on accident and a cute girl saw, you should ALWAYS pretend you did it on purpose!

...Y-YEAH, I PROBABLY COULD, BUT… I DUNNO. I’M NOT SURE THIS IS MY KINDA THING. I THINK I’M MORE OF A MARIO KART KINDA GUY WITH RACING GAMES.
>mostly because those let him make up for his lack of skill with blue shells, but he wasn’t about to say that part out loud
>regardless, he swung his leg off the prop bike, trying to act as casual and laissez-faire and Not Owned as he could

IT WAS FUN, THOUGH, BUT I’M READY FOR SOMETHIN’ ELSE. LESSEE….

>after an eventful few hours and an unfortunate, painful attempt on the mechanical bull, J was about ready to call it a day for the arcade

>but on the way out, something caught his attention in that row of impulse-buy crane machines lining the exit: the most adorably overstuffed, perfectly round stuffed panda that any living thing had ever laid eyes on
>and an idea for the best way to show off to Winnie crossed his mind

HEY, WIN.
>he jerked his thumb over to the machine
YOU COLLECT PLUSHIES AND JUNK, RIGHT? YOU FEEL LIKE TRYING TO MAKE A NEW ADDITION?

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564074

File: 1601509116475.gif (327.51 KB, 160x330, No No, I Totally Understand Ne…)

>>41564070
>Crowley looked a bit regretful as Mettral revealed that she had been homeless when she started out, but kept any thoughts on the matter to himself
>it was encouraging to hear how she pulled herself out of that state, but it did stick with him how it didn't seem like anyone reached out a hand to help or anything
>granted, Mettral seemed to take pride in how she was self-sufficient, so it was possible she just didn't ask
>but it did make him wonder a bit

...?

>Crowley looked a bit confused again when Mettral detailed just how she made money

>the modelling bit he kinda understood, but "ring girl" was a bit unfamiliar to him
>not to mention "twirling along" as she said it
>what was she trying to allude to there?
>...maybe better not to ask

W-Well, it all sounds like a very...chaotic time period...

>he wasn't sure how else to put that without prying for more uncomfortable information


Oh, that reminds me! Are there any other heroes we can reach out to for help?

If we're going to be trying to find the Dopants, it might be good to get others in on this, right?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564075

File: 1601509569597.png (159.49 KB, 305x496, shock and despair.png)

>>41564073
>Winnie blinked as J brought up her love of plushies, blushing a bit
>that gut reaction of her was to almost instantly assume he was gonna mock her for it
>but instead, all he did was suggest she add a new member to her big fluffy family
>but when she realized what he meant, she quickly grew nervous again
Y-You mean, t-trying one of those c-claw machines!?

I-I-I-I r-really shouldn't! I-I'm... I'm n-no good at them!

A-And y-you know how these things are! Th-They're likely, y'know, rigged o-or something! Yeah!

I-It's fine! I-I can always s-spend some more b-by shopping online, o-o-or whatever!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564077

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>>41564074
>"Are there any other heroes we can reach out to for help?"
>Mettral frowned slightly, looking very unsure
Ssssssssssssort of? But not really?

It's complicated.

It's not like I'm a part of the Justice League or anything; I don't have teammates or allies I can just ring up whenever.

San Fran's a big city with big crime. Other heroes have their own problems to deal with, and can't spare their time to help out.

That's just the reality of things. If someone's out helping me dismantle the Dopant business, that means nobody's paying attention to some black market weapons deal, or crazy scientist trying to build a death robot.

Sometimes you just gotta handle this stuff on your own.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564078

>>41564075

>J grinned. perfect, exactly the kind of stage he needed to totally flex


NAH, DUDE. CHECK THIS SHIT OUT. Y’KNOW HOW MANY OF THOSE JANICE HAS? LIKE, HALF OF THEM ARE THANKS TO ME. I GOT A METHOD FOR THIS.

>with a cocky smirk, J approached the machine and inserted a quarter

>and then he just kinda… stood there for a moment
>he placed a hand on the side of the glass and wiggled the crane a bit
>and again on the other side
>and again from the front of the glass
>and so that repeated again and again for nearly a minute, with J placing his free hand on some spot of the machine, then slightly inching the crane around, bit by bit in every direction
>all with a look of utmost focus on his face, tongue poking out a bit between his teeth
>another few inches to the right, one to the back, a couple centimeters to the left and front…

GOT IT.

>with a smile, J stepped back from the machine and clicked the button

>he turned to face Winnie, arms crossed and grinning, while the crane dropped…
>closed…
>raised…
>and thump, dropped the stuffed panda into the prize slot, all with perfect accuracy

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564079

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>>41564078
>Winnie watched as J maneuvered the crane with the precision of a brain surgeon
>she wasn't even sure what he was doing, but it sure did work
>Winnie let out a small "wow" as the panda dropped into the prize slot, even giving J another round of golf-clapping
I-Incredible!

I-In one go? How did you- what were you even doing?

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564080

File: 1601511680081.jpg (31.53 KB, 512x288, PUPPY DOG EYES ACTIVATE.jpg)

>>41564077
>Crowley looked a little disappointed by that reply, but he could understand the point she made
>there was a lot going on in a city this big, no doubt there, so anyone else working as a hero would have their own crimes to solve and prevent
>not to mention a ton of recurring villains he didn't know at all
>so it being just the two of them on this would be challenging, but they would simply have to endure

Alright, that's fair...

Although, are there any known criminals near us we should look out for? Just in case they get in the way while we're out investigating?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564081

File: 1601512214169.png (390.17 KB, 669x556, what are we waiting for.png)

>>41564080
>Mettral hummed, taking a moment to really think
Believe it or not, not really.

Or I guess, to be more accurate... not lately.

The Big Bad Bot Boyz will always be a bit of a problem, but they're kinda small potatoes nowadays, despite their name.

Their leader got locked up last year, and since then, they've never really been up to their old tricks; just petty thievery and stuff.

>another hum, Mettral trying to think

...come to think of it... I haven't heard of any kind of Dopant/villain path crossing?

None I can think of, anyway...

>she shook her head, focusing back on Crowley

I think it's more important to keep focused on the Dopants, and deal with any kind of outside threat as they come along.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564082

>>41564079

HONESTLY? HELL IF I KNOW. I JUST KINDA, I DUNNO… FEEL IT?

LIKE, I GUESS IT’S BECAUSE I’M MADE OF BLOOD, AND I CAN SENSE WHERE IT IS, SO WHEN THE MACHINE MOVES I CAN SORTA FEEL ALL THESE TINY LIL’ VIBRATIONS AND SORTA MAP THEM TO THE STUFF INSIDE, OR SOMETHING?

>J stared at his own palm while he talked, as if that would give him any more insight into his inexplicable crane-whispering talents

>but eventually he just shrugged and looked back to Winnie

OR MAYBE IT’S JUST BECAUSE I’M THAT AWESOME.
>and there was that cocky grin again as he leaned down to hand the teddy bear to Winnie
MIGHT WANNA ASK ONE OF THE EMPLOYEES HERE FOR A TRASH BAG OR SOMETHIN’, CAUSE I CAN KEEP GOING.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564083

File: 1601513815589.png (30.43 KB, 212x237, I've Spent The Last Three Hour…)

>>41564081
>Crowley nodded again, knowing that Mettral was right, as strange as the situation was
>why weren't any of the known criminals seen with the Dopants?
>was it just a coincidence, or were the Dopants actively avoiding them, or the other way around?
>questions they'd have to ask if they ever caught one of them
>speaking of...

I'm still not really all that familiar with the Dopants at all, come to think of it...

Are there a lot of them? Are they an actual gang, or do they just sort of...pop up?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564084

File: 1601513907084.png (366.87 KB, 572x558, glad for you.png)

>>41564082
>Winnie was a bit confused by J's explanation, but it sounded scientific enough to trick her innocent brain
>she just quickly accepted the fluffy panda in her arm, shining up a brilliant smile at J
Th-Thank you so much!

Y-You don't need to keep going; honest! This is m-more than enough!

>she looked down at the panda, examining it for a second

Hmm... how abooout... I know!

I'll name him Jackpot! Y'know, b-because it starts with a J, like you!
>she gave J another grin, but a thought did slowly form in her brain
>it was one of those things she had always wondered, but never really thought enough about to fully become curious about
Hey, J... uhm...
>she shifted a bit in place, a bit embarrassed to even ask this
So, uhm... like... is your name just... J? Like... the letter J?

Or... like... Jay? J-A-Y? I, uhh... I never really thought about it until now...

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564085

File: 1601514387383.png (281.85 KB, 318x544, can we go now.png)

>>41564083
Mostly the latter.
>Mettral was quick to answer
>it was, after all, her primary topic of interest lately
Most Dopants you'll find are just ordinary folks who choose Gaia Memories as their drug of choice.

Most of them have no affiliation to the people behind this, and aren't much help.
>she paused, and lifted her finger
Most.

There are Dopants who work for the kingpin behind their distribution.

Some of them have targeted me specifically to kill me, which is always a good thing. It means you're getting on their ass, and they deem you a threat.

The trick is to just try and be able to separate the two groups. Which... well, it hasn't been too hard of a trick thus far.

Both assassins that came after me were pretty blunt about it, so whoever's behind this isn't too concerned about being subtle.

The real hard part is getting them in a situation where they can talk. Dopants are tough as shit when transformed, so your first instinct's always gonna be to weaken them and knock them out.

Problem is, when you do so, withdrawal sets in, and they become drooling helpless vegetables.
>she frowned, looking down at her hands
I managed to save one, but... haven't had much luck in replicating the effects.

And even he didn't know much about the full extent of the operation. So our shady kingpin is keeping his business as far away from himself as he possibly can.

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564086

File: 1601516122641.png (239.76 KB, 853x480, vlcsnap-2011-11-01-16h05m31s93…)

>>41564085
>Crowley listened quietly as Mettral went into more detail about the Dopants
>and she would see his expression clearly change from curious, to disturbed, to disgusted, to horrified
>there was a lot to process as he had all of this explained to him, and it left him reeling from how far this went

...they're...addicts...?

>that by itself was upsetting enough, even if it didn't excuse the sheer damage Fog had caused to Arkham

>but that there was an organization behind this, selling these addictive devices to them, and then doing everything it could to keep the leader's hands clean, just made it all the more disgusting and anger-inducing

...and there's no way to know how many of them are out there...?

>there could easily be more than just Fog that left San Fransokyo as well

>what if there were others in other towns?
>what if there were more sellers in other towns?
>how long before there were power-addicted dangerous criminals across the whole country?
>and it sounded like even if they spread that far, there'd be no way to track them back to the source
>not if they were unable to even talk when they were deprived of their drug

>Crowley's fists were clenched as they rested on the table, still dealing with the torrent of emotions going through him then


...how could someone do that to so many people...?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564087

File: 1601516797691.png (485.72 KB, 983x557, welcome to the big leagues.png)

>>41564086
>Mettral blinked, taken a bit by surprise at what Crowley had focused on
>she could definitely understand his reaction; she was taken aback when she saw how the Dopants she busted ended up too
>"How could someone do that to so many people...?"
...

Take your pick, really...

The money. The power. Sick thrills, maybe. Maybe all of them at once.

I try not to think about it. Focus instead on how good it'll feel to punch that person right in the face, and see everything they worked for crumble around 'em!

Yuri Takamori!RpQzSCoUtsCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564088

File: 1601517354308.png (280.39 KB, 451x451, 156173889373643270207814838065…)

>>41564062
>If Arthur questioned the sincerity of Yuri's interest in the English Civil War, the way that her attention didn't falter as he elaborated would certainly be a piece of evidence in its favor.
>Yuri tilted her head and furrowed her eyebrows at the mention of parliament being optional. That certainly didn't make any sense to her. Was that just evidence of how utterly modern her perspective on governance was in comparison to history.

>Wait. They banned Christmas? Yuri couldn't help but laugh at the sound of that. And she really wasn't sure why that tickled her so much. Maybe because it sounded like the plot to some kind of family Christmas movie except it actually happened!


"I'm sure the Royalists fought valiantly for that reason alone."

>As her mirth subsided, another thought popped into Yuri's mind. One that would either make her look highly knowledgeable or...

>Well, maybe she'd make him laugh too.

"Was... this the conflict that brought the Magna Carta into effect?"

Crowley Mackenzie!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564089

File: 1601517816993.png (78.08 KB, 244x273, I'm going to FUCK YOU UP.png)

>>41564087
>unfortunately for Crowley, all he could really do was focus on why
>easier it might've been not to, he just couldn't help himself
>what could someone possibly have to gain from getting countless people addicted to just being powerful monsters?
>was it really just a matter of money?
>did someone relish the power that came with having all of these people under his thumb?
>even if the people seemed corrupt to begin with, like Fog, that didn't mean they deserved to be tied to something like this forever
>it was almost like-

-!

<"Like the Keepers."


>the difference was that the Keepers followed their leader willingly, having been emotionally manipulated into believing they were a god in human form

>while these people had to work for their leader because their bodies demanded the rush that came with it
>but the end principle was still the same; someone hiding behind countless scores of misguided people who might've otherwise not fallen in line with them, using them for whatever means they may have, stomping on their lives with no care for them whatsoever

>Crowley could practically feel his blood boiling, and for the first time since she met him, Mettral would see him glaring down at the table with an utterly furious look on his face

>he would then blink once or twice, as if coming out of it, and realizing at some point he had moved to stand up
>he looked up at her, still looking pretty dang pissed, before closing his eyes and exhaling slowly

.....

>he then opened his eyes again, a more determined look on his face


We should go. Right now.

The sooner I understand everything about where to go here, the sooner we can find the Dopants, and the sooner we can put an end to all of this.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564090

File: 1601584941209.png (179.88 KB, 284x607, all eyes on me.png)

>>41564089
>Mettral blinked as Crowley suddenly stood up, and delivered that line
>truth be told, Mettral had been questioning a lot about him
>he seemed like such a sponge nerd that she wondered just how effective he could be as a hero
>but now she could see it; that determination in his eyes was something she'd seen in other heroes already
>...but man, she was really comfortable eating her snacks...
>whatever; she just grabbed the bag and stoof up with a wide grin on her face
That's the spirit!

Get ready for Mettral's Super-Intense Hero Regime, kiddo!

When we're done, you'll be a goddamn master in these streets!

Chris Wilder!aLEJudith.Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564091

File: 1601588502880.png (112.4 KB, 480x480, Schoolt.png)

>>41564061
>Hmmm so a family member of hers was worried about both of them being heroes? Well it was a risky venture so that was understandable.

I see, that's a reasonable concern.

>Now it was Chris' turn to feel awkward and hesitant about the question. Though they already had a response formulated for this very occasion.


My reasons are two fold; I wish improve upon my magecraft so I can help people who could benefit from it, such as yourself for example. But I also have a more personal reason which requires that I have actual experience in combat.

>That would be all they would say about that however, what that personal reason was wasn't going to be something they'd reveal willingly.


Hmmm, enough of that sore topic then. We have... sigh exercise to do.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564093

File: 1601590874024.png (18.08 KB, 55x144, hi there.png)

>>41564091
>Will was left with a few questions regarding Chris's answer
>but even Will could tell these weren't questions Chris would be very happy in answering, probably
>she could understand that; she wasn't sure how much he wanted to reveal about her life either, especially to someone she just met
>so when Chris quickly changed the topic, Will was all too happy to oblige
Oh, yeah! Almost forgot about that!

Yeah, sure! Let's go! I'm sure we'll find something fun!

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564095

>>41564030

Yeah...this movie's pretty solid though, crazy to think that sort of thing could happen.

>Kari suddenly pauses and freezes up for a few moments, her purple eyes glowing brightly for a moment as the air around the two grow cold...


..Something...isn't right...

>Kari suddenly jolts up from her seat and goes running out of the room and theatre itself

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564096

File: 1601595273185.jpg (25.18 KB, 540x304, tumblr_pfyqn6nvlJ1x274kho2_540…)

>>41564095
Yeah....crazy to think huh?

>Clearing her throat, she tried to think of something else too talk about.


Well it's not like we-

>Cutting herself off once she saw the glow in Kari's eyes, she jumped in her seat a little when she took of.


....What?

>Getting out of her seat, the dragon girl would follow right behind her.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564097

>>41564084

>”I'll name him Jackpot! Y'know, b-because it starts with a J, like you!”

>J’s eyes snapped wide, staring blankly into space with that same cocky smile frozen on his face
U-UH, THAT’S – THAT’S GREAT! THAT’S A – IT’S A REALLY CUTE NAME.
>...was his face getting a little red?
EHEH. HEH. ahem.

>he nervously cleared his throat and readied himself for Winnie’s next question

>only to totally blank when he actually heard it

...uhhhh…

I… DON’T ACTUALLY KNOW…?

I NEVER REALLY THOUGHT ABOUT IT EITHER, JUST… “J” IS WHAT JANICE CALLS ME, SO…

>J trailed off for a long moment, eventually shrugging with a somewhat troubled expression on his face

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564098

File: 1601596209800.png (201.21 KB, 348x543, its nothing special.png)

>>41564097
>Winnie remained in silence for a short moment, unsure how to really process J's inability to spell his own name
>but maybe it's just what he said; he doesn't think about it, because he's just "J", and that's all he needs
>in a way, she really admired that about him; how he always seemed so confident about who he was, without needing to justify himself to anyone
>she couldn't help but draw some parallels to a certain blue blur, but only for fun, obviously
A-Ah, well... fair enough!

Maybe Janice would know, then. I should try and ask-
>all of a sudden, Winnie's voice just died in her throat
>she remained frozen in place, thinking about that hateful glare Janice had shot her
>and that idea quickly exited her mind, and she scrambled to make a distraction
A-A-A-Anyway, I-I'm pretty hungry!

Sh-Should we g-go get something to eat?

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564099

>it had been an eventful couple of days for Janice, between classes both normal and heroic, helping Sandy (who she guessed was her girlfriend now?) after what happened in the city, and a really weird dream about Inara that she was never going to tell a soul about
>but fortunately, things seem to have been settling down quick after the Sandy incident, and so it was back to boring ol’ school business as usual

>and that’s when Janice was pulled aside at the end of her Algebra class and told that she was needed in Ms. Charleston’s classroom

>ughhhhhh.
>of all the teachers to be called in by, Charleston had to be one of the most stressful
>Janice sorta understood the gist of her whole “can’t show emotions” thing, but even with that in mind, Charleston had the air of being a total perfectionist hardass who could always find some kind of issue with your work
>not only that, but she was involved in the hero courses, meaning that there were at least two potential reasons behind this call
>Janice was really hoping that it was just about something purely academic, and not something that was going to complicate her life any further

>when she found herself in front of Charleston’s door, she took a deep breath, silently begged to whatever god was listening that this was only about class, and peeked her head in


...hello? I was told you wanted to see me, Ms. Charleston?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564100

File: 1601596811152.png (148.3 KB, 449x543, standing here.png)

>>41564099
>"total perfectionist hardass" was most definitely on Charlotte Charleston's resume
>the fact her wardrobe seemed to consist entirely of identical suits was good enough proof of that
>the pure coldness that accompanied her on anything she did was just as strong as her penchant to look exactly the same at any opportunity
>so when something was amiss on Charlotte Charleston, it had a way to stand out like a sore thumb
>Charlotte sat at her desk, perfectly upright as she was wont to do, looking not much different than she normally did, as per usual
>but a close enough look on the pale skin around her eyes showed a very uncharacteristic redness on them
>if one didn't know better, one could make the assumption the Ice Queen, Charlotte Charleston, had been crying recently
Yes, Miss Torres. Thank you for your time.

Please come in, and have a seat.
>her brutal monotone remained however, making it difficult to believe the woman was capable of crying to begin with

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564101

>>41564100

>a little reluctantly, Janice did what she was asked

>as she was taking her seat, she was about to say something
>but then she noticed those weird pink spots around Charlotte’s eyes, and that stopped her train of thought and brought on a look of visible confusion
>...better not to bring it up, right?

...um. So, what’d you need, ma’am?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564102

File: 1601598443683.png (181.65 KB, 327x512, what is it.png)

>>41564101
>there was a brief moment of silence, Charlotte unable to answer her right away
>that overwhelming feeling of "just dive out the window and run" was crawling back into brain
>she took in a deep breath, trying to steel herself past it
>she knew this was the right thing to do, even if it meant prodding at an open wound
...

Miss Torres, I have no easy way to say this, so I will try to keep this brief for the benefit of your time.

It has recently come to my attention that-...
>she paused, drumming her fingers on her desk
...Miss Torres, the matter I want to speak to you about...
>another pause, Charlotte's internal struggle completely separate from her cool exterior
>she kept getting flashes to how Joanne had reacted every time she tried to spit it out
>even though Janice wasn't her daughter, she was still her niece
>still family
>the thought of her reacting the same way made this much harder than she hoped
...

Miss Torres, I... feel it is only fair to inform you about recent events that have to light.

While they do not directly affect you, it is still something I think you deserve to know.

...Miss Torres, a new student at the Academy has turned out to-...to be related to you. Your cousin, to be more precise.

And... she is also my daughter. Making me your... aunt, naturally.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564103

>>41564102

>well, Janice didn’t react as bad as Joanne did

>there was no screaming or tears, just… confusion
>Janice just kinda raised an eyebrow and stared
>every few seconds, she opened her mouth to try to think of something to say, but nothing came out

>she was vaguely aware that her mom had a sister somewhere, and now that the connection was made, the resemblance to her mom and grandma was noticeable

>but… there’s no way that they would actually run into each other by accident like this, right?
>that’s too ridiculously contrived, right?
>why would she be living under a totally different name?

...I… are… are you sure?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564104

File: 1601599530690.png (275.42 KB, 510x524, hear this.png)

>>41564103
Very much so.
>Charlotte bluntly answered
I did as thorough of a background check as I could.

My name is Joy Torres. My sister is Jenny Torres, and my mother is Jolene Torres.

I was raised in the same house your family currently lives in.

The only way this could be a coincidence would be if a new Torres family had moved into my childhood home, and coincidentally had a Jolene and Jenny in their family as well.

It's... unlikely, as I'm sure it's obvious.

>she grew quiet, unsure of how to proceed that wasn't just standard robotic speech

>maybe if she had been normal, she could have prevented Joanne from reacting the way she did
...

I probably should have noticed sooner, but... well, Torres is a rather common surname even in this school.

...

I also checked, and no, none of the other Torres in the facility are related to us.

Arthur Goulding!Ren/VL7f/QCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564105

File: 1601601918820.png (396.1 KB, 912x561, Casual.png)

>>41564088

>As Yuri laughed, Arthur felt himself smile. It was just for a second before it was forced back into an expression of neutrality. He leaned back in his chair, absently flipping a pen around in a free hand.


Well, they didn't know it was going to be banned back then. But once the English Protectorate took over, it was lead by a Puritan. Very famous for having fun.

>He said, his words dipped in sarcasm as he continued on.


The Magna Carta was earlier than that. Though, the kings at the time of the war were attempting to stop people from talking about it. Probably because it was relevant.

>And if Yuri was worried that she might look a fool, Arthur barely even seemed to notice. He was hardly noticing anything at all, even the slowly reducing feeling of awkwardness as he prattled on about some obscure history he knew.


The king after the Protectorate dissolved probably signed it. Maybe. I'unno, I hardly remember anything from school before STAR.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564106

>>41564104

>Joy, huh? Well, that WAS the name that Janice heard growing up

>and she had the right names of her family, though she was a teacher so that probably would’ve just been on Janice’s records
>and she did know that Aunt Joy went away for some reason that mom and grandma were always really evasive about talking about…

>...it… seemed to add up?

>but it was still too alien and out of nowhere for Janice to fully internalize the idea
>and so the topic just felt kinda… weird and uncomfortable

So… what do you want from me, then?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564107

File: 1601603701990.png (64.19 KB, 202x325, this isnt good.png)

>>41564106
...
>that was... not a question she expected to hear
>on one hand, Charlotte almost felt relieved that Janice seemed to be handling this in a very calm and logical manner
>but on the other hand... it left her really unsure how to feel that someone from her own family just reacted like that
...

Nothing, I suppose.

I just felt like you should know about this.

...

...

But if there is anything you'd like of me, then please, don't feel afraid to speak up.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564108

>>41564107

>this was a weird thing for Janice to try to wrap her head around

>honestly, she wasn’t even sure if she wanted to ask anything
>she’d felt free from her weird family drama at STAR, and now here it was following her again
>but it didn’t feel right to just leave Charl- aunt Joy? To leave her hanging like that. It definitely seemed like something important to her

>Janice shifted awkwardly in her seat, having a hard time meeting her gaze


...uh, I guess… I’m kinda curious why you left? Nobody ever told me.

Yuri Takamori!RpQzSCoUtsCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564109

File: 1601605415584.png (410.9 KB, 960x960, YSLookaway.png)

>>41564105
<"He's so nonchalant about everything... he really is like a boy out of one of my books!"
>Yuri had to pull her hand away from the pen flipping and back into the conversation. How could one boy be so mesmerizing?

"Alright, so this was more the kings trying to rebel against he Magna Carta?"

>Wait. Wasn't there something Yuri was forgetting here?

>Oh. Oh. That. That's what she was forgetting.

"Now, uh..."

>Yuri looked away; already kicking herself for having missed something so obvious. This would make her look airheaded for sure.


"D... Did you happen to catch what the assignment actually was?"

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564110

File: 1601605635831.png (150.91 KB, 332x555, what do you want.png)

>>41564108
>as soon as the question left Janice's lips, a sharp hiss escaped Charlotte as she inhaled through her clenched teeth
>she probably should have expected that question, but a part of her was hopeful the emotional(?) reunion would distract from it
>but only afterwards did Janice's last comment truly hit her
>"Nobody ever told me."
...
>it made sense
>why would they fill Janice's head with stories of the disappointing daughter
>at the very least, she could be used as a cautionary tale
>but simply... not talking about her at all was just as logical of a step
...

...

Growing up with my condition... it was difficult for your grandmother. While she never truly vocalized this, it wasn't difficult to see.

Your mother was... basically a perfect daughter. She was smart well beyond her age, capable at nearly everything she did, and there was no doubt on anyone's mind that she would grow up to be a well-adjusted member of society.

...I was the opposite of all of that. In social scenarios, I was a pariah. The strange girl who never laughed, cried, or got angry. I did not have friends. Teachers struggled to comprehend me. And-...and I can only imagine what your grandmother must have felt raising a child who seemed so indifferent to her.

Back then, we didn't have STAR. I barely understood how to handle my emotions, let alone those around me. I came to believe what I heard everyone say about me. That I simply had none to begin with.

When my metahuman powers manifested, it only worsened an already complicated situation. All of a sudden I wasn't merely the strange emotionless kid, but now I was a "mutie" as well. One whose power was... quite easily taken advantage of.

I got involved with bad crowds, under the misguided idea that they were my friends. My silencing abilities allowed them to commit criminal acts of varying intensity, with little cause for concern that they may get caught.

Until we got over confident, and we were caught. Now I was the strange emotionless mutie criminal girl.

>she paused, if only to give Janice a slight break from the oppressive monotone of her voice

>some people could only manage to hear her uninterrupted for a short moment of time
...after that, as an overly emotional teenager with even less ability to understand and control her emotions, and certainly no way of demonstrating them...

There was a "blowout"... if you could call it that. Your grandmother was clearly in pain, even though she tried to hide it. Your mother was clearly disappointed, and the words out of everyone were "it's clear who the problem child is".

And I didn't know how to deal with that. In insight it's clear that I was angry. Sad. But back then, I had no real concept of these things.

I just knew being there was hurting others. So I decided the only logical conclusion was for me to run away, and stop bringing so much grief to my family.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564111

>>41564110

>that was… a lot to take in all at once

>and some parts were resonating with Janice in ways that she didn’t like
>for the most part, it left Janice all but speechless

...ah…

>and the room was left in awkward silence as Janice just… tried to digest all that

>she… felt like she should have something to say, but she wasn’t sure
>that all made sense, but… it was definitely a lot more grim than the picture of Joy that Janice had built up in her head over the years

I… guess I only ever heard the nice parts.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564112

File: 1601606863609.png (275.42 KB, 510x524, hear this.png)

>>41564111
>this was awkward
>what could she even follow this up with
...

For all they knew, I was probably lying dead in a gutter somewhere.
>perfect
I don't blame them for not wanting to speak of me.

Not only was I a disappointment to them, and source for much anguish, being reminded of my likely fate must have been hard to deal with.

...I probably would have died all on my own, but... fate had other plans in store for me, for better or worse.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564113

>>41564112

No, I mean, like…

>Janice hesitated, unsure how to tackle this

>she was playing with issues that had been buried for longer than she’d been alive, after all

...I never heard anything, like, bad about you. Whenever mom and grandma talked about you, it was always stuff like when you were mom were kids, or mentioning the stuff you liked, or…

>another awkward pause as Janice tried to watch for a reaction that… in hindsight, wouldn’t come


...me and Jackie heard a lot about you, just… not that part.

>which just made the whole thing all the more confusing for Janice

>the picture of “Aunt Joy” that had been built in her head was always a positive, if kind of melancholy one
>she couldn’t really think of a reason that her family would’ve just buried all of this, if it really was as bad as Charlotte claimed

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564114

File: 1601607942552.png (181.65 KB, 327x512, what is it.png)

>>41564113
>there was a short silence as Charlotte tried to process what Janice was saying
...

Then perhaps they figured I could possibly influence you or your sister, if you were to know the full story.
>any positive explanation for this was clearly far removed from her head
I can't speak for them, but that is a logical step to take.

It may have been best for you to know that I simply existed without problems, and then left for vaguely disclosed reasons.

If neither of you thought about me too much, there was no risk of you possibly taking the wrong lessons from the story.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564115

>>41564114

>...well, that was about as good an answer as any Janice was going to get right now

>she just sorta slumped back in her seat, again trying to think all of this over

...you said I have a cousin here? Is it anyone I’d know?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564116

File: 1601608953007.png (148.3 KB, 449x543, standing here.png)

>>41564115
>that was a much easier question to answer
Yes, but I don't know how much you may have interacted.

Joanne Cannes.

She's spectating in the same class as you are for the hero course.

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564118

>>41564114

>yeah, the name was ringing a bell. She’d seen Joanne at the back of the classroom, or hanging around the music room a few times.

>people kept insisting that she and Janice looked alike, but Janice never noticed the resemblance.
>...well, guess they were right, then?

I… see.

>another awkward silence, and another question came to Janice

>...one without any good opener.

Sssso, um… am I… supposed to keep this a secret? Like, if you’re telling me about this, am I supposed to… tell them?

>...wait, one more


A-and, uh… what am I supposed to, y’know… call you now?

Arthur Goulding!Ren/VL7f/QCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564126

File: 1601751305399.png (188.32 KB, 435x480, Whyme.png)

>>41564109

>Arthur suddenly blanched. He'd completely forgotten that they actually had work to do. Something about Gettysburg.


....Yeah, we were meant to be doing something, huh.

>He said, stretching the words out a tiny bit longer than they should have been. Desperately stalling for time as he tried to remember what the teacher had said before he shut off and decided to talk about a completely different Civil War...!



Shit.

>Arthur slid forward in his chair, a profoundly displeased look covering his face. It's not like he was in danger of failing the class if he fucked up on one assignment...But it still bothered him. Getting a C was fine, but ignoring it was not.


Maybe it'll be online...?

>It was a desperate hope, but it was all he had. Asking the teacher to tell them again would draw more attention onto Arthur than he was okay with, by which he meant any attention.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564127

File: 1601761270223.png (181.65 KB, 327x512, what is it.png)

>>41564118
>boy, those were all extremely loaded questions, weren't they
>she hadn't given either of them a single thought
>she hadn't even considered those as questions that were going to be asked
>even if, in hindsight, they were extremely obvious questions to pose
...

...

...

I... don't know.
>she had to answer truthfully
...

I will not ask you to keep this a secret. I told you this because I wished for there to not be any secrets.

What you do with this information... well, I leave that up to you.

Blood ties or not, I am technically a stranger to you. And I won't push to try and change that if you have no interest in changing it.

Yuri Takamori!RpQzSCoUtsCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564129

File: 1601763821298.png (374.92 KB, 588x532, DDLC_2019-11-29_22-29-56.png)

>>41564126
"This is my fault, isn't it?..."

>Yuri had been the one to get them talking about the wrong civil war, after all. If she could have just reined herself in and focused on the assignment Arthur surely would have remembered!

>Just look how frustrated Arthur was... She'd just caused them to fail the assignment, so she certainly couldn't blame him! Yuri had just gotten her foot in the door, and now she'd thrown it away!

<"Of course. It figures I would sabotage my own happiness..."

<"Perhaps I could ask the teacher, but..."
<"Maybe I should. Clean up my own mess and all."

Kari!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564134

File: 1601837912268.jpg (23.03 KB, 360x450, Bionoid12.jpg)

>>41564096

>She'd practically run an entire block before running down an alleyway and suddenly stopping, backing up as a pair of Mummy like creatures slowly walked forward, looking all over the ground and surrounding area, groaning out "eeeeevideeeence" to themselves as they shambled around


>A figure in the middle groaned confused and stumbling forward, bee like arms with honeycomb patterned armor, centipede like antennae, and ant like legs

>Though notable are an odd tiny pair of horns portruding from the creature's head and a dark blonde fox tail portruding out of the rear.

>The figure mumbles seeing the pair arrive in the alleyway "w..what's AAAACH"

>The figure growls and immediately barrels forward knocking Kari aside as it tried to get out of the alleyway.

>Kari's knocked forward and to the side by the creature, having frozen up for the briefest of moments, not able to react to it properly

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564135

File: 1601840647487.jpg (36.12 KB, 540x304, tumblr_pngtsvEkcD1x274kho1_540…)

>>41564134
Kari where are you going!?

>Having decided to fly after her, Louise saw that she had headed down one of the allies. Landing ad the entrance she followed behind on foot.


What the...

>Stopping to watch the mummies search the ground, the dragon girl tilted her head before hearing a new voice.


>Finding the source, she looked them over before starting to hold out a hand. Pulling back as the figure suddenly ran forward knocking Kari away, Louise tried to grab it.


Kari!

Bianca Felicia!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564136

File: 1601844510896.png (439.02 KB, 800x558, isnt that cute.png)

>joy of joys; the jolliest of seasons is among us!
>the spooky season, of course!
>and Bianca Felicia was a woman who adored the spooky season!
>some could say a little too much, but she'd say "yeah, what about it?"
>there was a chill in the air, the leaves starting to turn their colors, and it wouldn't be long before she could have fun with the crunch of them beneath her heeled boots
>in this spook months, Bianca was not one to wait for a single day to have her fun
>so she found herself with some bold fashion choices, dressed in all black, and topped with a big witch's hat on her noggin
>as she strolled along to New Arkham's central plaza, a spring to her step and a tune in her hum, she wasn't paying much attention to the world around her
>some stores were starting to put up their decorations, while others were dragging their feet (not to mention the heathens who already had the fiend Saint Nick adorning their displays)
>for a moment she wondered if Crowley was feeling the holiday spirit in California, but she didn't dwell on it for very long
>she had to worry about the preparations for Ana's shop, which she gladly handed over to Bianca to handle (after a lengthy whining session business proposal)

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564137

File: 1601848246058.jpg (192.2 KB, 1280x907, ExplosionVol2_4.jpg)

>>41564136
>as Bianca skipped through the streets of Arkham, it would be impossible not to see a small crowd having gathered in the plaza, their attention focused on someone near the fountain
>who was all too quick to broadcast their intentions

People of Arkham! I have come here to guide you to prosperity and rescue you from fear!

>Bianca would hear a few murmurs from the crowd, though mostly of disdain and annoyance


Here we go again...

Does he just never give up...?


>should she walk through the crowd, she'd see the wannabe witch standing atop a typical soapbox, waving his staff over his head as he spoke


Not long ago, we suffered a great tragedy. A monster terrorized our fair town, and set us against one another!

Yeah, where were you during that whole thing again?

>Clarence faltered slightly at the comment, though he quickly recovered and fired back


W-Well, I was fortunate enough to be-look, that's not important! What is important is that I am here to help you now!

This monster attack is only reflective of the curse that has been upon Arkham since the olden days! One that I will set right! I shall restore Arkham to its former glory, as its true protector!

With your non-existent magic?

>again, Clarence faltered, then turned to the one who snarked at him, fuming as he replied


The magic is real! I can cast magic, I tell you! It just...a-anyway, the point is that I can!

>Clarence raised his staff up to point at the sky, back to his confident demeanor


For I am Clarence Gregori! The Last Witch of Arkham!

>a weary sigh ran through the crowd, and another voice spoke up


Look, kid, you can't go saying that kind of stuff. Especially not right now. So quit joking around and hop off that thing, and if you really wanna help then head to the soup kitchen or something-

It's not a joke!

>Clarence again shouted back, face red and steam almost coming out of his ears

>he then looked around for a second, before turning his attention to the fountain behind him

I'll prove it! I'll use my magic to make this water boil!

>he turned to face the fountain fully, holding the staff in front of him and chanting


Boboibubabo...Loloilulalo...Bobebobaboiba!

>after he finished chanting, he paused for a moment

>the crowd watched with slight interest
>but, nothing happened

...?

>Clarence turned the staff to his face, looking at the tip once again

>spritzzzzzzzzz

-! GAH!

>a faint spray of some strange fluid went into his face, causing him to recoil and cough a bit

>he shook his head after a second, as the few people there leaned over to watch him

What was that for?! What did you-

>he then stopped when he heard noises of disgust go through the crowd, looking at them for a moment in confusion, then back to his staff

>he held it up so he could see the crystal inside of it, acting as a makeshift mirror
>and found a number of large red bumps on his face

-! AUGH! YOU STUPID STAFF! GET THESE THINGS OFF OF MY FACE, EVERYONE CAN SEE ME!

>Clarence started shaking the staff futilely as the crowd began to disperse, clearly having had enough


I swear, it's every week with this kid...

Doesn't he have better things to do?

Hey, any signs of Whisper?

Nah, no one's seen them since the fog attack...

Bianca Felicia!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564138

File: 1601849287774.png (118.89 KB, 281x511, not scheming.png)

>>41564137
>once Bianca noticed a small crowd, her curiosity got the better of her
>and she arrived just in time to see this poor excuse of a Doctor Strange make a total fool out of himself
>she didn't join in on the crowd's frustrated heckling, and when everyone dispersed, she remained behind and watch him fumble with his staff
>she'd heard the gossip surrounding this... person; the "Last Witch" of Arkham, as he had so bravely announced himself earlier
>some poor kid just seeking attention with a faulty staff of tricks
>reality was even more cringy than Bianca's brain could have imagined
Pretty interestin' spell ya got there.
>she finally spoke up, half-amused, but also half-interested in this now
>despite the crowd's skepticism, and even though he failed in doing what he intended to so, Bianca could tell that was real magic being used
But I think you should probably reread your spellbooks for a freshener, if this keeps happening.

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564139

File: 1601849899578.jpg (82.17 KB, 1280x720, maxresdefault (1).jpg)

>>41564138
>by the time Bianca had got to him, the staff had thankfully shown him some mercy and sprayed something else in Clarence's face, the boils disappearing very quickly
>so when he turned to respond to her, he was at first still moping and fuming over how that whole debacle went

It's not the spells, it's this stupid staff! I'm doing the chants just like my teacher told me to, but it just does whatever it wants-

>he then stopped, blinking a couple of times as he looked up at Bianca

>then down, his eyes sweeping over her
>and then back up
>she would see him start to piece something together, and say-

A rival?!

>probably not what she expected

>he hopped off of his soapbox and pointed the staff at her, quick to throw an accusation at her

If you're dressed like that and know about magic, that can only mean one thing...

You're a rival witch come to terrorize this town!

Bianca Felicia!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564140

File: 1601850331306.png (366.26 KB, 734x558, wont that be fun.png)

>>41564139
>"A rival?!"
Meow-!?
>Bianca blinked, taken by surprise at Clarence's sudden accusation
>did he manage to actually spot her magic, and recognize her as a magic-
>"If you're dressed like that and know about magic... you're a rival witch come to terrorize this town!"
>...probably not
Oh, this?
>she reached at her dress to tug at it slightly
Relax, boyo; it's just my Halloween fashion!

I ain't here to terrorize anybody, least of all Arkham.

This place is way too special for me to ever do anything to soil it! I'll even pick up trash I find in the street to safely dispose of it!

>with a friendly grin, she placed her fingers on the staff to try and aim it off her face

So take it easy; I'm not here to make you change your title to "Second To Last Witch" or anything.

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564141

File: 1601850898746.jpg (64.95 KB, 500x556, tumblr_otqlmcrmBx1tbzd8wo1_500…)

>>41564140
>Clarence blinked a couple of times after Bianca's answer, now not sure what to think
>on the one hand, she still knew about magic a bit more than the average person, so she had to be someone unique
>on the other hand, it was easy enough to dismiss her clothing as a costume

<"Stupid Halloween, throwing me off!"


>he shifted the staff away from Bianca just a bit, but still eyed her suspiciously


If you're really not a witch, and you're not here to be a terror, what are you doing out here?

>he paused, then his eyes widened slightly, as he looked to her with a more hopeful expression


Could it be...

Were you hoping to be my apprentice?!

Bianca Felicia!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564142

File: 1601851391056.png (357.6 KB, 608x476, playful cat.png)

>>41564141
>someone sure liked to dive headfirst into assumptions, didn't they
>on one hand, Bianca should really do the sensible thing and tell him that, no, she wasn't looking to be an apprentice, and was just curious about what he was doing
>...but on the other hand, that look on his face was absolutely precious and she kinda felt like she'd be shattering his hopes and dreams in one fell swoop if she told the truth
Ha ha! Well, ya got me!

See, I'm a bit of a magic nerd; I just find the stuff super interesting!

So whenever I see someone wielding some cool new magic I haven't seen before, I get all excited and curious to learn more about it!

>she hummed, putting on a bit of a more innocent look, arms behind her back and coyly turning her foot

So, if it's alright with you, I'd love to see what kind of power the Last Witch of Arkham has!

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564143

File: 1601853027113.png (340.76 KB, 768x1091, Kyakkou_Volume_1_15.png)

>>41564142
>this did work as Bianca had hoped, as Clarence looked absolutely elated at the idea of her being interested in his magic

I'd be delighted to!

>he hopped back onto the soapbox, raising the staff up over his head as he went back into his grandiose and overconfident mood


For as long as I have this staff and the latent power within me, there is nothing the Last Witch of Arkham can't achieve!

Now watch, as I light up the evening sky with the most brilliant sparks you've ever seen!

>he waved the staff around in a circle over his head, starting up another chant


Fafoflefulo...folafuleflo...fulaflufelo!

>there was again a slight pause, as Clarence looked up to see what would happen


...?

>he tilted his head, waiting for something to pop out of the tip

>only to hear a strange fizzling sound, causing him to look down at the other end
>and see a small fire sparking at that end

...oh-

>FWOOOOOSH!


>just then, a jet of flame shot out at incredible force, sending both the staff and Clarence with it up into the sky


AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa...

>Bianca would hear Clarence's scream trail off as he was propelled away, out of sight

Bianca Felicia!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564144

File: 1601853347119.png (442.09 KB, 800x558, whats going on down there.png)

>>41564143
>Bianca saw no real issue with just humoring Clarence for a little while
>so she just waited to see what he could cook up when-
>FWOOOOOSH!
-!!
>Bianca jolted as Clarence suddenly rocketed up into the sky, her eyes widening
<"Oh crap, oh crap, oh crap-!!"
>her brain panicked, frantically looking around her to see that there was thankfully not a very big crowd
>so she focused up again, trying to spot Clarence as magic began to gather around her hands
>if she could just find where he'd fall down, she can break his fall with no problem!

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564145

File: 1601853979044.gif (1.67 MB, 500x484, megumin-gif-19.gif)

>>41564144
>thankfully, despite the height he had soared to, Clarence hadn't gone very far
>she could see the jet of flame swirling around up among the clouds, flitting about to and fro at pure random
>it would take a few seconds longer, before she'd see the jet of fire heading back towards the ground

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!

>and Clarence's screaming along with it

>but just before he'd reach anything resembling solid ground, the staff again suddenly turned in direction, causing Clarence to fly over the rooftops
>then it turned again and flew back
>then it dipped down into the plaza, did once quick loop around a baffled and disturbed audience
>and then up and into the fountain, hitting the water with a loud SPLASH and the hiss of the fire being doused by the water

Bianca Felicia!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564146

File: 1601854229938.png (476.46 KB, 626x558, what is happening here.png)

>>41564145
>OK, he was coming down; she just had to summon up a big fluffy bed or something-
>nope, he just completely changed courses; dammit
>Bianca could only really stare nervously, hoping that she could somehow act fast enough to still-
>SPLASH
<"Nice work there, defender of Arkham..."
>Bianca quickly turned and rushed over to the fountain, diving in herself just to get at Clarence
K-Kid? Hey!
>she tried to grab hold of Clarence and yank him out of the water

Kari|Anthropod Greeed and Yummies!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564147

File: 1601854273910.jpg (450.84 KB, 600x600, 3bc6180a34fc0816594318f8c20b35…)

>>41564135

>The monstrous being tried to shake Louise off as they were grabbed


>And Kari shook her head and dusted herself off before slowly getting up


Louise...can you throw it back into the alley? And get out of here!

>Purple glows from her body as her legs shift to tyrannosaur ones and her hands shift to claws

>She gulps, a nervous look on her face

I just need to hold it back until one of the heroes shows up! It's one of the greeed, that's why I ran off, I could feel it using its powers nearby.

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564148

File: 1601854796495.jpg (92.4 KB, 1280x720, maxresdefault (3).jpg)

>>41564146
>luckily the water wasn't very deep, so Bianca would have no trouble fishing Clarence out
>he'd give a cold shiver once he had surfaced, and for a moment when Bianca looked at him, she'd see that he was scared out of his mind at what just happened
>he was clinging to the staff like it was about take off again, shaking like a leaf, unable to even speak

.....

>at least, until he looked at Bianca

>and then seemed to suddenly spring back up, holding the staff above his head as if nothing happened

Haha! Y-You see?!

Did I not show you the most brilliant sparks you ever saw?!

Bianca Felicia!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564149

File: 1601855133291.png (442.09 KB, 800x558, whats going on down there.png)

>>41564148
>Bianca blinked, stunned for a brief moment at how quickly Clarence shifted from terrified to boastful
>she didn't know if that was something to commend him for, or- nah, fuck it, she was gonna hug the crap out of him
Jesus Christ, kid! I thought you were gonna die back there!
>she held him tightly for a few seconds, but then pulled back to look him over
Are you hurt anywhere? Geez, let's at least get you out of the water before you catch a cold!
>without really waiting, Bianca quickly scooped up Clarence in a bridal carry to walk out of the fountain

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564150

File: 1601856281059.jpg (87.98 KB, 1074x1050, ni8s8mez6b211.jpg)

>>41564149

Hahaha! You see, this is the power of-MMLPH?!

>Clarence was clearly still trying to talk himself up, until he was suddenly pressed against Bianca in that tight hug of hers

>he only briefly had time to process what had happened before he was scooped up and carried out of the fountain, much to his embarrassment
>which he was quick to vocalize once they were out and on solid ground again, his face bright red the whole time

H-Hey! I-I'm perfectly f-fine! Y-You don't have to carry me!

And what kind of teacher lets his apprentice carry him around, anyway?!

beatCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564152

>>41564127

>...well that was… a lot to have to think over

>more than Janice could come to any kind of conclusion on right here and now

I… I’ll think about it. I guess I’ll, uh. Let you know, before I do anything?

>…


...can I… go now?

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564156

File: 1601922959998.png (476.46 KB, 626x558, what is happening here.png)

>>41564150
A teacher who just reenacted a rollercoaster without any kind of safety equipment!
>Bianca quickly matched his complaints with her own
You could've gotten killed there, man!

You're lucky you don't look hurt!

>she still took a moment to look at him

>no bruises or anything; extremely lucky
>against her instincts, she finally put him down on the ground
>but she wasn't going to stop fussing over him
I admire the guts, but you need to be more careful, dude.

Maybe stay away from fire spells until your staff's... fixed?
>it looked fine to her, but you never did know with magic items
>she frowned slightly
Now you're all wet too. You should get home and dry off, or...
>she thought for a moment
If it's too far, my apartment's close by. We can stop there instead.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564157

File: 1601923157841.png (148.3 KB, 449x543, standing here.png)

>>41564152
Yes, of course.
>Charlotte's answer was quick
I apologize if I took too much of your time.

Feel free to leave now. And... thank you, Miss Torres.

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564158

File: 1601923709090.jpg (46.76 KB, 767x720, hhR-s9VF_KhO15U-HmNbL0gmx6S83l…)

>>41564156
>Clarence was far too busy being embarrassed to think about how much danger he had just been in, his face still bright red as he was set back down

I-I'm perfectly fine! That...that was entirely intentional, I assure you!

>he didn't look all that hurt, no

>aside his (admittedly-worn out) shoe looking a bit singed
>beyond that, he was simply wet and cold in the cool autumn air, so her suggestion wasn't one he was about to turn down
>he looked around for a second, seemingly trying to remember where he was

...why does she have to live so far away...?

>he looked back to Bianca, able to swallow his pride at least a little bit before answering


...I guess it can't be helped...if you're willing to assist me, then I can't turn you down!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564159

File: 1601924703124.png (118.89 KB, 281x511, not scheming.png)

>>41564158
Rockin'.
>she was expecting more of a fight, to be honest, so that saved them some time
>she just wished she had something to cover the poor guy with in the meantime; couldn't be fun being so wet this late in the day

>luckily for them, the walk wasn't very grueling

>the building was unmistakably Old Arkham, despite being on the opposite side of the river
>a simple faded-white building with five stories, still homely but clearly having seen better days
>this was Ana's apartment, but Bianca had begun the process of moving back now that Crowley's apartment was getting a bit crowded and steamy
>Deedee had moved in to look after the place when Crowley planned his trip to San Fransokyo, and Celia had actually gotten herself a source of steady revenue despite her free-willed hobo soul arguing against it
>there wasn't much point for her to stay there anymore, so going back to Ana's seemed like the best idea
>but moving was also annoying, even with her magic, so she'd been procrastinating a bit
>Ana's apartment hadn't really changed at all, even with her leaving, which really was just like her

Right, make yourself at home!
>Bianca assured Clarence as she waltzed into the apartment
>it was remarkably big, much bigger than Bonnie's tin can of a home
>these old buildings always stood out among the newer architecture
Bathroom's over there; go ahead and dry yourself off with a towel.

I'll get ya something to wear instead of those wet rags you got.

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564160

File: 1601925777800.jpg (91.25 KB, 747x557, Megumin_Manga.jpg)

>>41564159
>Clarence wasn't too thrilled as they made their way back to Bianca and Ana's apartment, still cold as ever the whole trip
>he did relax a bit upon seeing the building itself, it reminding him of the old apothecary he used to stay in, even if it wasn't in Old Arkham
>making more buildings that looked like this would have to go on his list of things to do once he'd undone the curse on the town

>once they were inside, Clarence wasted very little time looking around

>he instead quickly made a beeline for the bathroom, shouting his gratitude as he ran

Thank you very much, apprentice! I'll be out shortly!

>and he practically dove into the bathroom once he reached the door, clearly eager for some proper warmth again after his little accident

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564161

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>>41564147
Oh no you don't, I'm not letting you get away from me!

>Starting to lift it up, Louise kept a tight grip on the being despite it trying to shake it off.


I'm not leaving you alone Kari.

>With a yell the dragon threw the greeed back into the alley as far as she could before walking up to stand next to Kari.


I'll help you keep it here till one shows up.

>Flames would then start to float over her hands.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564162

File: 1601926646331.png (498.9 KB, 737x702, kiss the fist.png)

>>41564160
>the bathroom was... well, a bathroom
>a spacey one too, with all amenities accounted for
>it even had a bathtub!

>Bianca, meanwhile, went to work trying to find something the guy could wear

>a bit tricky given not just that there were only two women living there, but both were over six feet tall
>Clarence seemed to have a very similar fashion sense to Crowley's, but the height disparity was crazy
>trying her best, she scavenged together some sweaters, yoga pants, shorts, even a strapless dress that was oh so very short on her, but was probably just a regular dress on him
>she had no real clue what he preferred, so just give him plenty of options, right?
>her old school uniform was just there for precaution's sake; she didn't know, maybe he felt perfectly comfortable with that!

>wandering over to the door, she gave a quick knock

Hey, so, picked out a bunch of stuff for ya!
>she turned the knob, opening the door just slightly so as to not break his privacy
Just pick whatever feels right for you!
>she shoved the pile of clothes through the door, waiting for him to pick it up

Kari|Bug Greeed and Yummies!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564163

File: 1601927824010.jpg (410.18 KB, 500x500, 1de37a2d191681cc752fcd33e47742…)

>>41564161

>The Greeed was shoved back but easily recovered, not falling to the ground whatsoever in the whole encounter


>Kari gulped a bit as Louise helped, she didn't know how to feel about somebody else being dragged into this sort of thing, let alone somebody she liked, but at least Louise had powers....


>The bug beast let out a harsh buzzing noise and started to take to the air, if it couldn't get past by running, it could use its bee bits to fly...!


>Though Kari gets an idea...if Louise was going to be here anyway, maybe using that firepower in a more defensive way could be effective?

>She fires a blast of ice at the bug beast's tail to weigh it down, the fluffy fox tail immediately freezing over and causing the ascending insect to sink
>She turns to Louise before shouting out
Greeed a lot of the time operate partially on their animal component's instincts, we might be able to get to the bee bits by making a bunch of smoke!

>She scans the area before pointing to a nearby dumpster laying wide open..


Light up that dumpster over there, I can put it out with my ice to prevent it from spreading

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564164

File: 1601928282106.png (138.47 KB, 540x304, tumblr_pnlnu2bvgr1qjvkxgo5_540…)

>>41564163
> Opening her wings, Louise prepared to go up and knock the bug out of the air. Watching as it's tail was frozen over causing it to start coming back down, she turned to look at Kari.

Yeah, and the smoke would be a good signal for one of the heroes to see.

>Holding up a hand, a ball of fire formed in it before she threw it into the dumpster setting the trash inside on fire.


Here's hoping this works, but we'll still need to deal with those mummy things.

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564165

File: 1601928457695.jpg (31.62 KB, 640x908, KonoSuba_Vol14-10.jpg)

>>41564162
>tempted as Clarence was to hop into the bathtub and heat himself up faster, he didn't want to impose on Bianca's hospitality
>and he should probably get home sooner rather than later
>as much as he still didn't feel 100% right calling that apartment "home"
>but Bonnie and Angelica did shelter him during that fog attack so he couldn't say it was an awful place to be

>he had already disrobed and was toweling himself as best he could, as quickly as he could

>he certainly didn't want to embarrass himself in front of his new apprentice any more than he already had, so being expedient in this was a must
>he looked up when the door cracked open, seeing the clothing being nudged through the opening, and quickly reached over to snag them

Th-Thank you!

>it would take a few minutes longer before he finally re-emerged from the bathroom, just wearing one of the sweaters and the surprisingly-loose-fitting yoga pants, while carrying the rest of the clothing in his arms


Y-Your thoughtfulness is very much appreciated, apprentice!

Kari|Bug Greeed and Yummies!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564166

File: 1601929381919.jpg (149.35 KB, 800x800, 1e014ad916d4c8ae0c40a3f8779a85…)

>>41564164

>As the fire lit the trash and smoke bellowed out from the mix of cardboard and out of date pizza toppings filling the restaurant's dumpster, the Greeed was knocked right into the cloud of smoke as it kept trying to fly up and escape before hand...


>Breathing in the smoke, the bug mix rose its honeycomb arm guards to its face and started to drink in the honey itself



>And it started to fall...


Those...? I think I can deal with them.

>Kari walked up to one of the Yummies and stabbed her claw into them

>And the yummy proceeded to break down into bright silver medals that Kari proceeded to absorb.

>She stretched a bit afterwards and jumped up a bit, bouncing back and forth


Woo! Oh wow that! That actually felt really good!

Where's the other one?

>The other Yummy was reeling back to where the Greeed had landed, As Kari made her way over, she kicked the dumpster closer to those two so that the smoke would keep the bee in that dulled state.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564167

File: 1601929796245.png (357.6 KB, 608x476, playful cat.png)

>>41564165
>as the door opened and Clarence walked out, Bianca couldn't help but let out a tiny squeak
>the oversized sweater look was utterly precious on him
Yeah, don't mention it, don't mention it~!
>she skipped over, taking the clothes from his arms
Bianca's just happy to help no matter what!

Unfortunately, her roommate doesn't have a dryer, so you might wanna wait around a bit while your normal clothes get all not-wet.
>she quickly walked over to the door to her room, casually tossing the pile of clothes in without any regard if they fell on her bed or not
So, in the meantime, you hungry or somethin'?

It's almost dinner time, and I'd feel like a terrible host if I let you starve!

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564168

File: 1601930393009.jpg (86.51 KB, 781x1000, flat,1000x1000,075,f.u1.jpg)

>>41564167
>Clarence was left briefly baffled over the idea that Bianca was going to cook for him, his arms just hanging in the air after she swiped the clothes from him
>on the one hand he really should be going, not only was this imposing too much but Angelica would likely be wondering where he was
>but on the other hand his clothes did need to dry...

...I-I couldn't possibly ask that of you! I would be a very irresponsible teacher to deprive my student of food!

>at this, Clarence took on his more confident demeanor once more


But there is no need to worry! Once I have dispelled the curse that has taken Arkham, and am duly rewarded for my efforts, I will no doubt have the money to repay you and thensome!

I will build a magnificent manor for myself and my many wives, and you will live with us, as is only fitting for my apprentice! There, I will feed you and keep you clothed myself as I teach you everything I know about magic!

>he paused, then faltered slightly, while still trying to maintain his confidence


That...may take some time, but it can be done nonetheless! As they say...

"Romania wasn't built in a day!"

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564169

File: 1601931612612.png (498.9 KB, 737x702, kiss the fist.png)

>>41564168
>"I would be a very irresponsible teacher to deprive my student of food!"
>Bianca blinked, stopping on her way to the kitchen to look back at him
>and then letting out a light snort of amusement
Dude, it's fine, we've got plenty of leftover pizza for both of us!
>she wandered over to the fridge, pulling out two boxes of pizza and going about the process of reheating them
>meanwhile, she just let Clarence go on about whatever his deal was
>"curse that has taken Arkham"; not really new material
>seeking for fame and fortune, and a big mansion; yeah, sounded about-
>"And my many wives..."
...
>well, in for a penny, in for a pound
>he thought big, that was for sure
>she spun around to face him again, leaning back on the counter
You've got your life all planned out, huh?
>she had a smirk on her face, her tone playful but not condescending
Well, Bianca would sure love to see her darling Master achieve his fullest potential, and live a life of luxury alongside him~

She's even got experience living alongside cute guys with multiple wives, so hey, it's a match made in Heaven!

>she turned around as the microwave came to a stop

But in the meantime, all those lavish boar dishes being served by legions of adoring servants will have to wait...
>she pulled out the plate of half-pizza, placing it down on the counter
You got some pineapple pizza waiting for ya.

I know it sounds kinda weird, but trust me, it's delicious~!

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564170

File: 1601932904649.png (1.3 MB, 1268x1802, KonoSuba_Vol9-5.png)

>>41564169

-?

>Clarence hadn't even noticed that Bianca moved while he was speechifying, looking over to the kitchen as she prepared dinner anyway

>much to his displeasure - he was trying to be a responsible adult here, dammit!
>but he didn't have much room to complain now, as it was clear his protests would be in vain
>and he was hungry...

>so he approached the counter reluctantly, although he didn't move to take a slice of pizza just yet

>instead he was left to process what Bianca had told him, which was a lot
>it was wonderful to hear that she was all for his plan, and who wouldn't be?
>of course it would work out that way
>but there was one part he couldn't help but latch onto

What do you mean you have experience there?

>he paused as he took a slice finally, then gasped


Is there another witch in Arkham who's already ahead of me?!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564171

File: 1601933149164.png (439.02 KB, 800x558, isnt that cute.png)

>>41564170
>Bianca snickered a little, taking a slice for herself
No, no, don't worry your silly head about it!

Crowley's no witch; just a friend of mine!

I lived with him for a while to help out with his bills, but now he's got a girl in each arm, so that frees me up to live in with other people!

That's all I meant!

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564172

File: 1601935155300.gif (1.36 MB, 540x540, bm7x3hg5sq011.gif)

>>41564171

Oh...

>Clarence was still a little confused by this, but figured it was better to let it go

>so he just focused on eating the pizza he had taken

.....

>Bianca would see Clarence make a rather displeased face when he tasted the pizza for the first time

>but he said nothing, either too hungry or not wanting to make a fuss
>so he kept it up, albeit while still talking to her

Apprentice, yew've fed me an' clothed me, sho I inshisht that I do shomething fer you!

Tell me! Whatever it ish you want frum me, I'll do it!

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564173

File: 1601935714839.png (366.26 KB, 734x558, wont that be fun.png)

>>41564172
>is this some kind of alternate universe Crowley?
>how many other cute guys who just can't accept basic kindness without feeling like they have to repay it right away exist out there
Well, if you "inshisht", guess I'll try to think of something...

How abooouut... you just tell me more about yourself~!
>she grinned at him
If you're gonna be Bianca's Master, she wants to know all about the Last Witch of Arkham!

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564176

File: 1601941345875.jpg (297.98 KB, 1920x1080, Megumin_1.jpg)

>>41564173
>Clarence was a little befuddled by Bianca's request, but he wasn't about to refuse her
>so he swallowed the pizza bits he had ravenously devoured, then began speaking

Well, I suppose it will have to suffice for now!

You see, your dear teacher was once an ordinary orphan, kept within the oppressive walls of Saint Martha's! There my creativity and yearning for adventure were quashed under the heel of order and religion! No one could see what I was capable of, but I knew in my heart that I was destined for great things!

And, fortunately, I was discovered by one who saw the same thing!

>now fully in his dramatic storytelling mode, he was grandly waving his arms to and fro as he continued, as if he were somehow performing on ice


A great witch in his own right, the mighty Nilrem! One of the rare survivors of the cataclysm that took place over a century ago that saw our population drastically diminish! He knew that it was only a matter of time before such an event happened again, and so he needed to prepare! And thus, I was brought under his wing and shown the ways of magic!

>he raised his staff over his head again, as if expecting the gem inside to shine dramatically at this point

>it did not

He gifted this staff to me, and told me that I would become the new protector of this town! That the demon behind that horrific event would return one day, and that I would defeat them and end the curse that has laid over it ever since! And thus, would Arkham return to its former glory!

>he then folded his arms and huffed proudly, a smug smile on his face


Now you see how important your teacher is, yes?

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564178

File: 1601947126319.png (421.78 KB, 540x789, tumblr_p5z0v8eAxG1u33x2xo1_540…)

>>41564166
Is...is it eating something?

>Watching as the bee drank from it's arms while heading for the ground, Louise started heading for it.


Then while you take care of those, I'll keep the bee fox thing busy.

>Scales would start to grow over one f her arms as she watched Kari break down a yummy with an attack and take in it's medals.


Wait then do you think this one is made of those medals too?

Kari|Bug Greeed and Yummies!b2Kg7yDinoCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564179

File: 1601954729426.jpg (259.6 KB, 430x608, 0cf2a049543ee7f8f461e8fbd50d9e…)

>>41564178

>Kari walked over to the other Yummy, practically skipping and repeated the process, but this time, shoving a clawed leg into the yummy. stretching a bit as she froze the area around the dumpster fire and hmmmed to herself


well if I remember from Professor Spider-man's biology class, Bees calm down and are pacified when exposed to smoke because they basically get drunk on their own honey.

>Kari then raised a brow


...and yeah now that you mention it, that thing IS mostly made of medals, like me, but while these small fry are just cell medals, this guy has Cores.

>Kari taps her chin


maybe I can reduce him down to those? would be easier to manage that way.
This post was edited by its author on .

Country code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564180

File: 1601955419322.png (672.54 KB, 1280x720, tumblr_inline_pnt64cP2Og1roe8u…)

>>41564179
Yeah that sounds about right for one of his classes.

>Watching as the area around the dumpster was frozen, Louise took a step away from the ice.


I guess you could...but I wonder what it was they were looking for on the ground around here.

And if they get drunk on their honey...I think that might make things a bit easier to deal with.

So why don't I keep it busy while you work on getting it's medals?

Arthur Goulding!Ren/VL7f/QCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564184

File: 1602005218401.png (115.84 KB, 369x432, Ohdear.png)

>>41564129

I mean, neither of us were paying all that much attention if we got this distracted. Don't worry about it.

>Arthur waved it off, the frustrated grimace starting to ease off a little as he scanned about the room, looking for any kind of clue possible that could lead to them further having to not actually ask anybody for assistance.


If you can spot anything that might give us an idea, it'd be massively helpful.

>He muttered over to Yuri before continuing to crane his neck around. Hell, he was halfway considering looking over at somebody else's workbook to see if anything could be gleaned from their work so far.


...Something about Gettysburg? Where the hell even is that...

>And he began rambling to himself, just about audible for Yuri to hear.

Everyone!E2Vbn7o74sCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564185

File: 1602030406348.png (145.02 KB, 346x367, lets have a party.png)

>>41564176
>there were a few things that Bianca thought important enough to take note of
>first off, Saint Martha's; that was the same orphanage Crowley had come from
>Clarence's description of it as "oppressive" didn't help her views of that place; she had no trouble believing him the people in charge there were, in some capacity, pretty strict on him

>second, this "Nilrem" fellow

>she'd never heard of him, and she'd lived here long enough to know a lot of people
>old enough to survive "the cataclysm" over a century ago?
>sadly, that didn't narrow things down very much, but for it to have "drastically diminished" the population...
>could he mean the Spiriting?
>how come she's never come across this guy before!?

>once Clarence stopped, Bianca couldn't help but give him a short round of applause

>he put so much energy and confidence into that, she just had to
Mmhm~! Absolutely!

You've got a real dozy of a job ahead of you!

>it'd be pretty hypocritical of her to not take Clarence's words at face value

>was "getting adopted by a wizard and told they would face a powerful demon" any more crazy-sounding than "gifted a magic stone by an interdimensional cat being, and trained to fight a powerful demon"?
>but this "Nilrem" guy was something she might have to investigate either way
>at the very least to try and find out if she can help somehow; she wanted to think positively about this
You should probably get that staff looked after first thing though, right?

Wouldn't want to face a mighty demon with faulty equipment.
<"I can speak from experience..."
Maybe we can go see this Nilrem guy later? He should be able to fix it up!

Yuri Takamori!RpQzSCoUtsCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564186

File: 1602032041588.png (459.28 KB, 600x800, _ddlc__yuri_by_u_333-dc8s9ww.p…)

>>41564184
>He wasn't mad.
>Oh thank goodness he wasn't mad!
>Yuri almost giggled with relief before she managed to stop herself. After all, Arthur had just asked her a question.

"Pennsylvania. It would have to be somewhere near Confederate territory..."

>But the way Yuri's gaze was flicking around the room would tell Arthur that she was also trying to sus out what their assignment even was.


<"What was it like for those guys in that first shootout?"

<"I'm pretty good at painting, so if you did the research..."
<"I think people are gonna overlook the second day. Let's grab someone from that!"

>Yuri nodded a few times, and really hoped she was right.


"It sounds like we're supposed to grab a moment or a person from the battle and synthesize some kind of depiction."

>Yuri began to wring her hands.


"Of course, I could be absolutely wrong about that, but... I suppose it's better than no plan at all... right?"

>Her gaze finally met Arthur's, hoping to find agreement or reassurance there.

Clarence Gregori!CrONAHEG2cCountry code: ponychan.png, country type: customflag, valid: 41564187

File: 1602033483902.jpg (53.67 KB, 675x960, KonoSuba_Vol12-2.jpg)

>>41564185
>Clarence couldn't help but beam at the applause that Bianca showered him with, his ego already growing even more than it already was
>but his good mood quickly faded after she suggested going to see Nilrem to check on the staff, a more sad expression replacing it

We, um...we can't go see him.

Master Nilrem disappeared some time ago. He said that he'd taught me everything I needed to know, and that I had to strike out on my own.

>he looked at the staff again with a discerning expression, obviously unhappy with what it had been doing


He wouldn't have left me with faulty equipment...

But I swear this thing has a mind of its own! It just does whatever it wants to!