2013-10-15 - Peace and Sanity

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Peace and Sanity

After stopping an incident at Tomoeda Theme Park, Striker Aurum finds himself confronted by the mysterious girl who'd assisted him.


Yuushiro Kagami, Homura Akemi

Where: Tomoeda Theme Park, outskirts
OOC - IC Date:

10/15/2013 - 10/04/2013

<Pose Tracker> Yuushiro Kagami [Juuban (10)] has posed.

Although at least one crisis had been averted this night, it was not yet time for the heroes of the evening to rest. Convenient excuses were still being provided back at Tomoeda Theme Park to later be run in re-assuring headlines the following morning as Striker Aurum sped away from the scene, streaking through the sky on the tail of a sustained bust of powerfully compressed through his enchanted weapon. Pale golden boots glided neatly over rooftop and tree alike before they hit the ground in an seamlessly, unceasing run.

Deep within, the Golden Knight's poise was not quite as composed. Yuushiro Kagami was quite indignant over his initial course of action-no amount of reason seemed quite capable of assuaging his vexation. It wasn't something to leave lying either, no when the limits of his material form were so dependent on his relationship with the teenager. The stronger the bond, the more fully he could incarnate, and they already had enough factors working against him.

It's somewhere around a break in the argument that Rael finally comes to a stop in the middle of city park, seemingly bereft of people. "Perhaps it is time for us to talk." He finally said, speaking to Yuu, but an outside observer may have a very different perception.

<Pose Tracker> Homura Akemi [Ohtori Academy (8)] has posed.

It's not impossible to locate Homura ... if you know what you're looking for. Puella Magi tend to be able to 'feel' one another's presence through their magic, particularly if they are transformed, though a Witch's barrier may confuse the senses. Of course there's nothing at all ominous about that fact... wink. Other magical users are capable of detecting them too. It helps, of course, if they are actively using their magic. The resulting 'residue' of a Puella Magi's abilities lingers for a while and even can form a trail for others to follow. If they know how to look.

So it's not a complete surprise when Rael says 'Perhaps it is time for us to talk.'

... though hilariously it may surprise her to know that Rael wasn't talking to her after all.

"Then let us talk." A disembodied voice says aloud from behind the Golden Knight. There is no warning. No sound of approach, nor shifting of the shadows in the light of various electronic lamps. There is just the voice, and then the sound of footsteps upon a paved path in the darkened park walking away from Rael's back. Should he turn around he will see the figure of a girl. Middle School age at best, dressed in a strange outfit of muted colors. Upon her left wrist sits a strange silvery buckler: The only armament she seems to carry.

"Do you know just how close you came to flirting with disaster?" The Puella Magi's voice is calm, but stern. Like the side of a cliff that has stood for eons uncounted. "An split second's hesitation would have been all it took for your plan to end in tragedy. A tragedy greater than the within those rollercoaster cars."

<Pose Tracker> Yuushiro Kagami [Juuban (10)] has posed.

"Finally!" Yuu was more than a little exasperated, "I just can't believe you were really going to...."
"Hold, Yuushiro." Rael stated mentally, quickly quashing his host's protests with an explanation "Someone has followed us."

Yuu was about to say that was impossible until Homura appeared and quickly any other protests he could have managed. Rael takes a more even approach, taking the young girl's measure with such even reception that seems like he really had been speaking to her all along, "You are the young woman from earlier.." He states the obvious, perhaps still attempting to work out the mechanism by which she had managed to sneak up on him so thoroughly. After all, she didn't appear to have any item at her disposal save for that strange shield-like device (And as someone who knows shields, Rael does not deem it to be terribly fit for deflecting physical attacks).

He hears her criticisms without a single betrayal of emotion on his face so that it was not unlike talking to a very cunningly captured statue of the man instead. Yuu wonders just what the hell this weird girl was all about, but Striker Aurum ever takes the diplomatic course of dialogue, "Before I answer you, I must first thank you for your assistance with that matter. Great tragedy may well have occurred despite my best efforts if not for you." This praise is accompanied by a deferential not and clasping of the Knight's burnished shoulder, "However, you say such a familiar thing to me while yet a stranger. Otherwise, you would know I do not hesitate." There is a steel in his eyes when he says that, one he may well find reflected in Homura's own as one edifice of dedication faces off against another, "Furthermore...I cannot say I know of which greater calamity you refer." Playing coy, the thin veneer of suspicion edges through in the King's regal speech. These were strange and ominous tidings for a girl so young to speak of.

<Pose Tracker> Homura Akemi [Ohtori Academy (8)] has posed.

There are so many threads.

So many lines leading toward the future. One for each major player that will take place in the battles going forward. Of course there is one representing Rael/Yuushiro as well. His is of particular importance for it carries the ability to disrupt and destroy the entire pattern with a single tug. He's not the only one with this particular 'feature'. But Homura cannot really afford to ignore even one of these threads. The stakes are too high...

Time... it just never seems like she has enough time.

"I am a Puella Magi. My name is Homura Akemi." She introduces herself simply... and it seems as if she is even using her real name? No attempt at a secret identity? That's strange. Though Puella Magi are known to be a rather odd bunch as far as mahou shoujo go. "And you are Striker Aurum: Rael van Cyndros." Those words come from behind Striker Aurum, for once again Homura has decided to flash step behind him once more. Should he turn to face her though he will find, in mid turn, that she is suddenly there. Not where the voice came from, which was directly behind, but 90 degrees off to one side. Her expression is calm.

What is the point of all this? Is she just showing off?

"And now we are no longer strangers." In truth, Rael has not been a stranger to Homura for a very long time. But he doesn't need to know that. "I have no need for bravado, whether false or earned." Her expression is steel as well. Unyielding. And just like two blades meeting perhaps one can see sparks flying between her and Striker Aurum. "I'm only interested in preventing a future tragedy." The same one she spoke of earlier? Or another one?

"To that end, I need to know whether you will be an obstacle or an asset."

Her words sound like a threat. She still only has the buckler as a 'weapon' but... her ability to seemingly move in an instant without even a blur to read her movements by?

Perhaps she doesn't carry any weapons... because she doesn't need any.

<Pose Tracker> Yuushiro Kagami [Juuban (10)] has posed.

Had Rael not already met another Puella Magi by the name of Mami Tomoe he might find Homura's lack of discretion unusual, but all becomes clear the moment that foreboding title is spoken: A hunter of the empyreal creatures known as witches, and one of this city's many silent guardians. Given that he has yet to learn of the true darwinistic nature of many Puella, the King treats this as akin to belonging to a member of some sanctified order. In other words: It gives Homura a little bit of that undeserved credit she was about to refute, and she has Mami's good example to thank for it.

And it's well that she has it, for what she says next might otherwise earn her deep and abiding suspicion-which it certainly does from Yuu. "What the hell?! Rael, how does that creepy girl know who you are?! And where did she go?!" The teenager's shock resonated unheard within Rael's mind before the King politely asked him to remain silent. His turn is a slow and deliberate one, as mindful as the measured pace of the countless timelines Homura had witnessed over and over again. In that single moment a thousand Rael in a thousand parallel worlds might have turned that very same way, with the same serious expression reserved for the willful girl before him.

It was a simple, but important observation for a traveler of Homura's nature. A spirit of Rael's calibur existed beyond the normal confines of time and yet was as bound as any other prisoner. No matter what timeline he called home, Rael van Cyndros was always Rael van Cyndros. It made his actions very easy to predict.

From that perspective, Yuu was the troublesome one.

"Indeed." He'll confide, wondering by what sorcery Homura manged her fear. He did not hear any trace of passage, nor any traces of residual magic in the air that would often follow such usage. It belied a very efficient, seasoned wielder of such abilities...more so than a such a seemingly young girl had any right to be. "And while I am curious how you came to know such things, I will not question it-for now." He places a degree of emphasis on the end, saying it as much to Yuu's unheard outburst of disbelief as to Homura before meeting her gaze again, "Let us then concerns ourselves with we do have need for: An understanding. It is true that I also seek prevent a tragedy from unfolding upon this land, as well a my own." Or what remained of it, at least, "I do not know if we speak of the same danger-but if we both seek to protect the same things, than I do not see how assistance would be undesirable."

<Pose Tracker> Homura Akemi [Ohtori Academy (8)] has posed.

It is true. While there are many variations, many 'irregularities' between the timelines that Homura has visited, Rael van Cyndros is one of the features that has remained relatively static. True the events he encountered may have changed and his behavior was altered accordingly, but the core being itself remained true. In a way that was useful to Homura. It made him easier to predict. At the same time though it was a hindrance, and a disturbing one. For a woman trying to change the fate of just one person, to find someone who seems capable of resisting all permutations upon his character through the various universes seems to imply that there are certain constants that cannot be changed. As Kyubey learned, to his cost, when he decided to enlist Joan of Arc as a Puella Magi all those years ago...

... of course there's no way that Homura could entertain even for an instant that the fate of the one she wants to protect may not be able to be changed.

"I agree that an understanding would be good." Homura doesn't do another flash step after saying that, or before saying that. In fact it seems she has decided to stop using trick for now. Intimidation is a useful tool. While it's unlikely to get another magic user to bow down and surrender immediately it might just prevent them from fighting at all.

And often times that was the best outcome Homura could hope for.

"We do not." Homura states is plain when Rael wonders aloud whether or not they are speaking of the same danger. Does she truly know what it is? Or is her own personal goal unique enough that she's certain no one else, or at least Rael, would ever hold it? Unfortunately this girl seems to live and breathe in the cryptic. "However, I think our goals will overlap more often than they will not. You wish to protect this land? I will be doing the same. That said... your realm is your own concern."

Blunt. Perhaps refreshingly so? ... does she know of Rael's land as well? Maybe. Homura tries her best to walk the tight line between knowing too much and knowing too little.

"Am I clear? Or do you have any questions?" The girl grows quiet then, allowing her gaze to focus on Rael. Those violet colored eyes of hers are quite striking. They hardly look like the eyes of a 14 year old girl. They look older.

Far, far older.

<Pose Tracker> Yuushiro Kagami [Juuban (10)] has posed.

Although he might have as many reasons to as anyone, Rael would never in a moment consider an attempt to change fate. Such an act would only bring about greater suffering and despaire than it could ever alleviate, of that much he is certain. Instead he must dedicated to service and atonement, eternally watching over the Kingdom he had failed to protect, sparing the world of today undue suffering for their mistakes.

If he had any inkling of the true nature of Homura's quest he would attempt to dissuade her of it. Indeed, perhaps he had many times before. Clearly he hadn't been listened to if so, for now the brave girl stands before the enduring King once again exchanging silent vows and even-toned words for mutual assurance.

Just what would each of them take away from it this time?

"As you say." Again, he does not question Homura's apparent knowledge of things she may not know at all. Perhaps he believes she is trying to pretend at things, or has some long view of the situation his eternal nature gifts him with. The only person who seems truly out of the loop in this situation is poor Yuu, whose exclamations seem to go unheard by girl and king alike for all the good it does him. "As it must be." He responds to the matter of his Kingdom, recognizing it as his burden alone to bear, "If we can cooperate and provide assistance to one another in the matter of this land, I shall be glad to do so. I have met your enemies-the things you call witches, and understand they yield an evil seed only your order can purge. Should I obtain any, I shall yield them you as well."

She asks for questions, and it's only then that Rael takes a step forward, bringing into closer relief their difference in size. His sky-hued eyes have a presence and weight to it that as perhaps more fully felt up close, taking the full measure of Homura's violet-edged gaze before asking replying, "I met another young girl who hunted witches." He does not say 'like you', "Her name is Mami Tomoe. Do you know of her?"

<Pose Tracker> Homura Akemi [Ohtori Academy (8)] has posed.

~*Once Upon A Time*~

A neophyte Puella Magi fidgets a bit uncomfortably as she stands before Rael. The way he holds himself, his cool confidence, his knowledge, it's all incredible. So much that she was convinced it was ok for her to tell him of her true goal. The bespectacled and braided girl did not expect to suddenly be told to abandon her mission. That no matter what trying to change the fate of a single person like that would only bring about more despair and greater suffering. At that moment though she found steel within her spine. She stood up to him and declared that she didn't care! That no matter what happened... no matter how bad it got... she would protect that one thing that mattered to her most.

With her anxiety fraying her nerves, the Puella Magi turned her back to STriker Aurum and walked away. She wouldn't listen. She won't listen.

No matter what happened.


If size meant anything to Homura, she does not show it. Even if she is the David to Rael's Goliath, Still she refuses to crane her head up more than necessary to look him in the face. Her expression as always that stoic calm that she wears so well. At least into Witches are mentioned. In particular the evil seeds that they carry.

"Only Puella Magi have a right to carry those." Homura states evenly. "You do not need to deliver them to me in particular, if youw ere planning to. Just so long as you do not keep any for yourself." These words are spoken with a bit more force than the others. Though Rael may not know it, those 'evil seeds' of which he speak are so much more. And after all she has seen, Homura is loathe to use them even for herself or to allow other Puella Magi to use them. However... that is not a true option.

If you were caught high atop a mountain with no food save the frozen corpse of a former comrade, would you eat them? Or would you allow yourself to starve all the quicker? It's not a pleasant situation as you can imagine.

Next, Mami Tomoe is mentioned. Homura's expression doesn't flicker, but she says simply, "I know her quite well." Which is true, "She is a veteran, and quite skilled. However, if you wish for my advice regarding her it is: Do not rely on her too much."

... somehow she almost always manages to go first.

Reaching back with her right hand, Homura runs her hand through her long luxurious hair and allows her raven locks to flip freely through the air. As she does she turns away from Rael, though stops so she can regard him over her shoulder.

"Now, if you excuse me." She has other matters to attend to. The night is still young, and there are white shadows skulking in the dark.

<Pose Tracker> Yuushiro Kagami [Juuban (10)] has posed.

~In another world~

Rael stood unmoving in the face of Homura's boldly declared determination that should would not listen, would not falter, would not deviate from the path she had chosen. She spoke truly and from her heart, and even if the King could not sanction such a tragically noble desire, it was his duty to acknowledge.

Thus he watched the young girl's back as she retreated for him, never once averting his gaze until she had vanished through halls of time.

Unable to take the silence, Yuu protested, "Rael, what she's doing is crazy. Why didn't you stop her?"

Unphased, Rael found himself looking quite far away, "Her eyes. At that moment, they became..."

~Dust to Dust~

"I have some idea of what will happen if I do not. I have no desire to use such a foreboding object for my own purposes." He does possess some mild suspicions of just what the Puella do with him, but a King must also have his priorities. Mami is evaluted dispassionately by the raven-haired Puella, drawing an astute no from Rael, "She impressed me with her competence, but it was one meeting. I will consider your words. Guard yourself well, Homura Akemi." Once again, he will watch her walk away.

His decorum is not unusual. In Rael's time, a young girl arriving with ominous words of things she ought not know was a grave event, to be treated seriously.

In Yuu's time, however, it was just called being a creepy stalker. "I don't get this, Rael." He confessed, "How can you just listen to her say all that weird stuff and not question her?"

"She had strong eyes." The King would answer, well out of earshot, "I've seen eyes like that before. Long, long ago..."

'I did what I did in the name of peace and sanity.'

A pale golden gauntlet tightened, and Striker Aurum found himself looking at the ground. "It means little and less to us now." He replied to Yuu when he asked just what he had meant, "Let us go, Yuushiro. Your body has been tested enough tonight."

And finding no further argument, the last King of Anoria will depart as well, hoping only that those violet, unshirking eyes remain steadfast and unfallen.