2014-07-11 - The Creep Attacks! Mages To The Rescue!

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Title: The Creep Attacks! Mages To The Rescue!

A mysterious new enemy brutally downs Ren. Endo, Fate (sort of), and Nanoha come to her rescue. Mage battle ensues.


Endo Naoki, Fate Testarossa, Nanoha Takamachi, and Ren Aizawa as Jaren Zastava

GM: Ren Aizawa


Nishitama Park District

OOC - IC Date:

7/11/2014 - 10 February 2014

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.


Taking out a park bench and the tree behind it, Ren slides several more feet before coming to a stop, smoke rising from her final resting place. The girl isn't moving, battered and bruised and completely out for the count. Not good. Above her floats a severe looking man wielding a fearsome warhammer-like device. His face is twisted into a cruel smirk as he surveys his still prey.

"Is that really all the fight you have in you? And to think that dusty old device chose you after all this time..." He tsks, shaking his head as he raises his own device into the air. "Ground? Are you enjoying yourself, at least?"

<I AM. LET'S FINISH HER, MASTER.> Comes the deep baritone voice in reply, prompting the man to laugh. "You're even more of a heartless bastard than me at times, you know that?"

...Meanwhile, the scepter Ren faintly clutches in her grasp begins to pulse. A cloaked signal is transmitted out -- a call for help. IMMEDIATELY. Souverain Heraut can only hope someone will come to his majesty's rescue.

COMBAT: Fate Testarossa transforms into Barrier Jacket!
COMBAT: Endo Naoki transforms into Barrier Jacket!

<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [None] has posed.

A diminutive silhouette stands atop a building as pale moonlight fell around her. Holographic displays hung in mid-air as she poured her efforts into a wide area search.

Her features suddenly screwed up in consternation at the wide band telepathic message by a device, familiar, but not friendly. She ignored it at first, Bardiche had other ideas. A ping resounded, but Fate didn't look up from her displays.


Fate spoke softly, "It doesn't concern us Bardiche. Her friends live nearby, let them answer that call."


~Seconds Later~

A golden streak soars through the sky, moving with such rapidity that there's a thunderous boom. She doesn't stop, when she sees the man wielding the warhammer, descending upon as an aerial jouster. A blade of luminous mana attemps to scythe through the protection spells covering his blind spot as she moves past. Only then does she speak her introduction, in three words, "Give it back."

Bardiche, being his usual self, only speaks the aria after his blade makes its strike, <SCYTHE SLASH>

COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has used Scythe Slash on Ren Aizawa.
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has finished attacking.

<Pose Tracker> Nanoha Takamachi [Infinity Institute (3)] has posed.

<MASTER! A DISTRESS SIGNAL! IT IS SOUVERAIN HERAUT!> That was the only prompt Nanoha Takamachi needed, practially sending her desk chair flying across her room as she rises mid-equations in the midst of homework. It's not important now, snatching up the scarlet marble from its resting place.

"Mom! Dad! Gotta go! See you later, bye!"

Quick as she can she's out the door, much to the stunned dismay of multiple members of the Takamachi family.

And just like that, she's out the door, quick as a bolt in the direction Raising Heart indicates, before skidding to a dead halt. The sight she comes across is... Bewildering. Ren on the ground and unconscious. A strange mage, Device at the ready, and... Fate.

The whole sight makes Nanoha cringe, both internally and visibly as Raising Heart sets up for her, a flash of pink light replacing her casuals with the armored blues and whites of her Barrier Jacket, staff settled in her hand.

"Wha... What's going on here?!"

<Pose Tracker> Endo Naoki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Endo, luckily enough, happens to be around. It's his device that informs him that something is wrong, Fallen Stern still in the shape of an intricate looking ring when it pings Endo to notify him of the signal it's receiving. Since it seems like something Endo should concern himself with, he deviates from his planned route for the night in short order.

When he arrives on the scene he's already transformed, wind whipping and tossing his dark cape around wildly as he leaps and bounds across the park. He can't fly, but he can get places fast enough when he puts his mind to it. Trees and benches provide convenient launching points, and soon he's crashing down near the scene.

Once he gets a clearer picture of what's going on and the victim involved, he's in front of Ren in an instant. The young man places himself squarely between her and the man above, huge sword half-raised at his side. "What are you doing?" His voice is a sharp, angry bark.

COMBAT: Ren Aizawa narrowly braces Fate Testarossa's Scythe Slash, taking 4 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Ren Aizawa's Block ability activates!

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

He knew the possibility of other mages showing up in response to this attack was fairly high. It is wholly why he acted so swiftly, descending upon the girl with such fury that she barely had time to register what was happening. With Ren struck down all he has to do now is-


/Dammit./ The mage whirls around in time to meet Fate's approaching blade attack, holding up the warhammer device to swat through it. He grits his teeth in annoyance, mostly unharmed. "Oh joy. The calvary has arrived." He turns to look over at Endo and Nanoha as he says this, a bored expression painted across his features. "Nothing to concern yourselves with, if you're smart little children. My business is with that girl." He gestures to Ren. "I've come to collect something I loaned out to her." He hefts the hammer out in front of him, then turns to face Fate again, eyebrow raised. "Give it back? What are you going on about you silly little girl?"

<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [None] has posed.

As the blade of her scythe is parried by his Warhammer device, she flips backwards, to avoid the lazy swat, cape fabric fluttering. She stops short, hovering in the air imperiously, or at least as imperiously as any nine year old can when faced by a much older opponent, wielding a giant bludgeon.

"Don't pretend that you don't know." Sometimes Fate could be as laconic as Bardiche, much to Nanoha's frustration. Suddenly from behind and above the man, something golden, wreathed with violet lightning zig zags through the sky in serpentine motions before lancing towards him. His device would likely detect the homing attack before he did, making her gambit clear. The spell was cast before she'd made her first strike, she had just been fast enough to get ahead of it.

Bardiche continues acting the part of the jerk, at least if you're his opponent, calling out the spell's aria only once it was within point blank range. <THUNDER BULLET> "I've come for the Lost Logia."

COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has used Thunder Bullet on Ren Aizawa.
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has finished attacking.

<Pose Tracker> Nanoha Takamachi [Infinity Institute (3)] has posed.

"Collect something?

Blue eyes flit from the man as he faces down Fate, and then to Ren, unconscious and out cold.

Nanoha is not smiling. In fact her expression is a hardened line of barely restrained wild emotion. An indignant, almost childish anger, yet instead of heated and fiery and passionate... It is a chilled frost. Gauntlet-clad fingers curl around her Device as she flashes back to old memories.

Two girls fighting over a hairclip, one in tears, one jeering.

"Is that how you ask for something back? By hurting someone?" She murmurs, Raising Heart's rifle grip snapping down into place as the Device chirrups:


She's already taking aim, a sphere of pink coalescing at the tip as she takes aim.

Briefly. She falters. Fate's mention of Lost Logia pauses her but...

<<Excuse me... Move please.>>

It's a mental warning to the blonde, as she sets her finger on the trigger.

"How would you feel if someone hurt you back while trying to take away a precious thing?"

She asked Arisa Bannings this question once. After slapping her.


This is a little more explosive than a slap. A roiling pillar of pink mana erupts from the spear-like tip of her Device as she squeezes the trigger.

And flings herself backwards with the recoil, putting her body clean through a tree with a squeak that says this was not her intent at all.

Considering how it falls on her and pins the little redhead.


COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi transforms into Barrier Jacket!
COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi has used Divine Buster: Shoot on Ren Aizawa.
COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi has finished attacking.

<Pose Tracker> Endo Naoki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Endo's eyes flash after Fate as she whips past, and the slash of energy that follows in her wake. His eyes move back to the man, to Fate, the other girl, and down at Ren. It's the last one that he spends the most time on, half-crouching down to get a better look at the wounds the girls sustained.

"To collect something?" The words come through gritted teeth, his face set into hard, unhappy lines. "How about I let you borrow this."


Symbols burn into the air around Endo's device, dark purple light and triangular patterns that mark it for what it is. More concerning are the beams of light that scatter from it, a dozen streaks of energy that go hurtling toward the man above.

COMBAT: Endo Naoki has used Meteor Shower on Ren Aizawa.
COMBAT: Endo Naoki has finished attacking.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa fails to brace Fate Testarossa's Thunder Bullet, taking 22 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Fate Testarossa is Psyched!
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa fails to dodge Nanoha Takamachi's Divine Buster: Shoot, taking 59 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa perfectly counters Endo Naoki's Meteor Shower, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Counter! Ren Aizawa's Reverse ability activates!
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa's counterattack, Terra Fissure, bursts all the way through, doing 31 Fatigue damage to Endo Naoki!

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

Three against one. That's not very fair! But he's not really worried about not having the numbers advantages on his side. Cocky? Why yes he is, thanks for noticing! He's still focused on Fate, eyes boring into the tiny mage girl he deems to be nothing more than a pest.


Though perhaps he shouldn't underestimate her magical prowess. "You sneaky little..." He's not /entirely/ upset. He's a little impressed, actually. But not enough to actually admit it aloud.

Looks like Bardiche isn't the only jerk in this conflict.

The devious mage holds up a hand, and a barrier of brown light erects itself around him to absorb the brunt of Fate's sneak attack. Smug indifference turns to shock when his shield is shattered, and the electrically-charged energy zaps him good. "W-What?!"

It just keeps getting worse when Nanoha fires off that familiar pink beam of absolute hurt, which he is too shaken to dodge. Mr. Jerk Mage goes tumbling head over heels. Though in true villain fashion he recovers at the last moment, halting himself in midair.

The look on his face? /Priceless/.

He turns an eye towards Endo, seeing the third and final attack being launched his way. Narrowing his gaze, he swings the hammer, sending out an arc of pulsing energy. It hits Endo's, completely annihilating it /and/ continuing onward to slam into the cape-wearing mage.

Jerk Mage grins. "Alright there, boy?" Yep. He's back to being cocky despite getting /rocked/ by two little girls. His ego is obviously formidable. "Enough games. Broken Ground!" He yells his device's name aloud for the first time, the hammer responding with a deep chime that resonates through the air. He sweeps it out like before -- first at Fate, who gets a hurty beam of power shot right at her -- then at Endo, who gets much of the same. Nanoha is left out because of obvious reasons involving crashing through trees.

"And last but not least..." He says to himself, holding the hammer up. It flashes, bestowing his body with an eerie dark outline. This can't be good...

COMBAT: Ren Aizawa has used Beam of Hurt on Fate Testarossa.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa has used Beam of Hurt on Endo Naoki.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa has used Stone Invigoration on Ren Aizawa.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa has finished attacking.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa accepts Ren Aizawa's Stone Invigoration, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Withstand applied to Ren Aizawa!
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa fails to dodge Ren Aizawa's Beam of Hurt, taking 24 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
COMBAT: Endo Naoki narrowly dodges Ren Aizawa's Beam of Hurt, taking 17 Fatigue damage!

<Pose Tracker> Endo Naoki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Endo wasn't expecting to get hit back. His Device might be, but it's not fast enough to do anything about it either. A barrier flickers to life in front of the young mage, energy crashing into it and breaking through the boy's defenses in the space of a second. He goes backward, spinning off his feet, bouncing against the ground. Thankfully, the bench nearby helps slow his momentum. It loses the middle of itself in the process.

<KNIGHT. GET UP.> No sympathy there.

Endo follows the advice, though. He rises, holding the weapon in front of himself, gritting his teeth when the next blast of Mana hits it. That one hammers him down into a crouch.

He has just a moment to glance back at where Nanoha fell, perhaps hoping that the girl has another giant laser to help the situation. No luck there. At least Fate seems to be on his side for now. So he decides to show his displeasure at a more personal range.

He jumps. It comes along with a yell, something between pain and anger, and then he's soaring forward to meet the enemy Mage. Once his arc reaches the other man he swings, aiming to cut a huge chunk out of him.

COMBAT: Endo Naoki has used Radial Velocity on Ren Aizawa.
COMBAT: Endo Naoki has finished attacking.

<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [None] has posed.

Fate had been trying to ignore the presence of Nanoha, and the other two. Particularly the fallen girl. She told herself that she was only here because of the Lost Logia. It was a comforting lie.

All attempts to pretend that none of them are here are thwarted by the prodding, yet polite mental intrusion. 'Excuse me... Move please.' Feeling the riotous power gathering within the red head's intelligent device, she complies, quickly, getting out of the way as quickly as her flight spells would allow, a swift moving blur even as Nanoha's blast bowls him backwards.

Her chest heaving from the effort of getting out of the way of Nanoha's blast, the beam of power takes her full on. She looks completely startled as it makes contact with her barrier jacket, and smacks her backwards, right into a park bench, dust pluming from the crater of her landing as she carves a giant furrow into the landscaping behind it.

Even as the dust clears, Fate is already standing, but it's clear that she's hurt. Her barrier jacket has several rips and tears within it signifying just how badly the blast took her off guard. Several small cracks have formed on Bardiche's surface as he pings with the faintest hint of static, <ARE YOU ALRIGHT?>

"I'm fine, Bardiche. Let's go." She decides, to respond in kind, but that.. takes some setup. Floating in the air, she points Bardiche in his scythe form at him in an imposing way. "You're strong." She says, asserting the obvious.

Rising up higher above the battlefield, she holds Bardiche directly parallel to her. A giant Midchildan circle forms beneath her feat. The radiant sigil looks almost solid, as she begins an incantation, darkened clouds roiling and gathering in response, "Arcus Cultus Aegeas. Heavenly gods who shine over all, descend upon us now as I guide you."

Six giant golden orbs appear around her, linking together as one giant circuit by violet electricity. Power thrums through the air, as the smell of ozone grows strong. "Baruel, Zaluel, Browzel. Strike with lightning, and roar with resonant thunder." Surely she doesn't think he's just going to allow her to complete a full ritual spell of this power!?


Suddenly smaller golden Midchildan sigils flicker in and out of existence, in completely random patterns around him. Suddenly they shimmer brightly into being, before amber cubes try to form over each of his extremities. <LIGHTNING BIND.>

COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has used Lightning Bind: Standard on Ren Aizawa.
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has finished attacking.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa fails to dodge Endo Naoki's Radial Velocity, taking 47 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa narrowly braces Fate Testarossa's Lightning Bind: Standard, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Fate Testarossa is Psyched!  Ren Aizawa's Block ability activates!   Tangle applied to Ren Aizawa!

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

Jerk Mage is feeling pretty damn good right about now. His attack hits both targets, earning a maniacal giggle from him as Endo and Fate unintentionally cause further property damage to the once pristine park. This is so much fun! He's almost happy they showed up to give him some further target practice.

He's going to regret thinking that, however. Endo is up again and charging at him. Oh no! He doesn't do close quarters very well. Growling, he tries to duck out of the way, but is too slow for the charging swordsman and is slashed mightily. The mage yelps, flying back to put some distance between the two of them. Unfortunately this sets him up for Fate's retaliation. Before he knows it those aforementioned cubes are encircling his feet and hands, jerking him to a sudden stop.

Oh /hell/ no. He isn't going down like this!

"G-GROUND!" He bellows at the device.

It responds in kind. <MASTER!>

And that's all the words that need to be spoken between them. The top of the warhammer slides upwards with a loud mechanical click, and proceeds to start rotating, gaining speed until it's effectively whirling like a jet engine. <FAULT SIEGE.>

Raw magical energy explodes from the spinning hammer's head, a sound akin to the ground itself splitting open ripping through the air as the attack tears towards the two mages who are still standing.

COMBAT: Ren Aizawa has used Fault Siege on Fate Testarossa.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa has used Fault Siege on Endo Naoki.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa has finished attacking.
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa perfectly dodges Ren Aizawa's Fault Siege, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Dodge!  Fate Testarossa's Fade ability activates!  Fate Testarossa's Flash ability activates!
COMBAT: Endo Naoki narrowly braces Ren Aizawa's Fault Siege, taking 15 Fatigue damage!

<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [None] has posed.

The man that she is contending with is extremely powerful. If Fate represents the clouds of heaven, then he is the mountain that breaks the sky. It sounds like an earthquake, as the energy explodes towards her. As she opens her eyes, Fate is greeted by that sight, just before the burst of energy splits the clouds, seemingly dispersing the energy of her spell.. and her.

For a while, it appears as if the girl has indeed been vaporized by the powerful blast. As the cacophonous din of his attack fades away though, one might hear the sound of ragged breathing.. followed by, "Arcus, Cultus, Aegeas." The six golden orbs reappear right beside her, as she regathers the lingering energy of her ritual and picks up where she left up, right behind him. The only way Fate could have handled that attack was to get out of the way, and so she had. If she'd even have been a fraction slower, it might have indeed been the end of her. She must move like the wind itself!


This time Bardiche shouts it ahead of time, and Fate adds her own words to the aria, "Phalanx Shift." The orbs split into a multitude, parallel to her in a giant formation.

"If you won't give it up willingly, then I'll be taking it from you." Sweeping Bardiche downward at him, she speaks her orders with enthusiasm, like some Macedonian General to a formation of soldiers. "Fire!"

Each tiny orb lances towards him. Individually they're not accurate, or powerful, but there are hundreds barraging him, trying to plink away at his protection spells and defenses. The heavens respond in kind, to his intrusion into her domain.

<Pose Tracker> Endo Naoki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Endo's arc ends, the boy hitting the grass again and turning to prepare for another jump. He doesn't get too far before he's interrupted again. The huge, crackling wave of energy slams into him as he starts to lift off the ground again, his own barrier rising to meet it.

<STRONG.> Purple sparks burn into the air, the force of the blast sending him to the ground again, breaking through the edges of the purple sphere and tearing against his Barrier Jacket.

This is the first time he's fought another device user. Endo realizes he probably can't take too many more of these punishing blasts, the boy forcing himself to his feet again, his eyes skittering back toward Ren's fallen figure. Then the boy's hand tightens on his sword, grimace of pain melting back into grim resolve. He comes at the man again, faster this time, unwilling to let him retreat too far as he takes those huge, sweeping cuts in attempt to batter him toward the ground.

COMBAT: Endo Naoki has used Radial Velocity on Ren Aizawa.
COMBAT: Endo Naoki has finished attacking.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa narrowly counters Fate Testarossa's Photon Lancer: Phalanx Shift, taking 32 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Ren Aizawa's Reverse ability activates!
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa's counterattack, Punishing Swelter, partially gets through, doing 31 Fatigue damage to Fate Testarossa!  Critical Counterhit!  Exhausted applied to Fate Testarossa!
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa narrowly counters Endo Naoki's Radial Velocity, taking 33 Fatigue damage!  Ren Aizawa's Reverse ability activates!
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa's counterattack, Terra Fissure, partially gets through, doing 8 Fatigue damage to Endo Naoki!

<Pose Tracker> Nanoha Takamachi [Infinity Institute (3)] has posed.

"Nnnh... Nnggh...!"

Nine year olds generally do not fare well when pinned under fallen trees. In many cases there are broken bones, screaming, never being found. Sometimes being forced to amputate the trapped limb with a spoon, like in that episode of Happy Tree Friends.

Thankfully Nanoha's Barrier Jacket renders this a moot point, she's just pinned. And with a few gasping, grunting heaves, she starts to push the tree off and drag herself free. Just in time to... Pause. Pause and gawp. The sky alight with so much golden energy and Endo's furious assault...

On the bright side Nanoha is free and back in action again, as Raising Heart finishes venting the accumulated heat buildup from that last massive blast in a long hiss of steam.

COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi has used Catch Breath on Nanoha Takamachi.
COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi has finished attacking.
COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi accepts Nanoha Takamachi's Catch Breath, taking 0 Fatigue damage!

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

Fate is strong, also. Very strong. Endo too. And Nanoha. But... /Fate/. The trapped mage truly /looks/ at her for the first time. As... an equal? Her talk of the Lost Logia did not fall on deaf ears. She's obviously desperately seeking possession of the Jewel Seed he swiped not long ago. It was mostly done on a whim. He'd stumbled upon it, and figured it would be useful to seal it for later usage. But now... he's regretting that decision to be honest. All he truly wants is that blasted device that girl has. He can't afford to mix himself in other affairs.

The true reasoning behind the bindings he's suffering from is revealed next. He finds his eyes widening in moderate panic as Fate has dodged his desperate strike, and is now intent on bringing down the pain. The still spinning head of Broken Ground speeds up even moreso than before, and out comes a wave of superheated air that blasts towards the barrage of orb lances. Some of them are dissolved into nothingness. But not all. Most of them proceed to hit their target, burning holes into his barrier jacket with ease. He hisses, struggling against the bindings as he takes the hits.

Endo, of course, is going to try to get in on this. Who can blame him? Broken Ground continues to jump to his master's defense. Because that's what devices are supposed to do. A counter attack is launched, though the device is obviously starting to feel the wear and tear of the battle since it doesn't seem to have the same amount of oomph as before.

This is not good. The mage pants heavily once the attacks cease, reassessing his position. A few more hits and he'll likely be down and out.

"...You vermin." He hisses, looking /directly/ at Fate. Then, suddenly, he tosses his hammer, which seems to gain a mind of its own as it spins through the air. The plan? Hit Fate. Then Endo. Then Nanoha, who should've stayed down.

...He's kinda like Thor.

COMBAT: Ren Aizawa has used Mountainous Crush on Fate Testarossa.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa has used Mountainous Crush on Endo Naoki.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa has used Mountainous Crush on Nanoha Takamachi.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa has finished attacking.
COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi narrowly braces Ren Aizawa's Mountainous Crush, taking 24 Fatigue damage!  Nanoha Takamachi's Block ability activates!  Stagger applied to Nanoha Takamachi!
COMBAT: Endo Naoki fails to dodge Ren Aizawa's Mountainous Crush, taking 62 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Endo Naoki is unable to keep fighting!
COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi covers Fate Testarossa for Ren Aizawa's attack, Mountainous Crush, taking it upon themselves instead!
COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi fails to counter Ren Aizawa's Mountainous Crush, taking 58 Fatigue damage!  Stagger applied to Nanoha Takamachi!
COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi's counterattack, Round Shield, interrupts, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Ren Aizawa!
<Pose Tracker> Nanoha Takamachi [Infinity Institute (3)] has posed.

Where others should stay down, Nanoha Takamachi picks herself up. A tree falling on her is nothing. She's arguably in prime condition, despite the lingering soreness and stiff muscles from her last encounter with the blonde. And yet... Her first response is not to throw herself out of the oncoming onslaught.

It is a bad sight. Memories of Ren downed flitting through her vision. That hammer-like Device swinging. The sheer power she sees behind it.

"--Raising Heart!"


It is as though the Device knows what its small Master is planning. And though Fate had to chillingly rebuked and rejected her yet again, hard enough to hurt the redhead's feelings more than anything, and crack her resolve; right now none of that matters. Nanoha reacts on pure thoughtless reflex without a second to stop and think it over.


It's not wise. Nanoha knows it, but Raising Heart trusts her small Master's judgment and concedes.


In a blink and a blur, she's suddenly in the path, directly in front of Fate. And just like that, the first blow instantly shatters the pink sigil of shield that spreads from her fingertips, the onslaught too much for the hastily crafted spell to withstand. And the second breaks her. The impact resounds with a dull crunch of the armored breastplate under her outer jacket laters, crumpling and ablating to minimalize what has to be an intense amount of brutal force behind the hammer. But no amount of ablating can hide the fact that the girl's eyes instantly glaze over with pain, the very air kicked from her lungs as she sags in the air with a stunned wobble.

"A... Are you... Alri...ght?" She barely manages in a wheeze to Fate. Unfortunately from her position she can't do the same for Endo. Even if she could, she certainly would be in no condition to, and a twinge of mild regret filters into the adrenaline and pain of undoubtedly bruised ribs.

But her fingers clench. "Why... Why are you attacking my friend...? Without a good explanation...? Why are you fighting us when you could be talking?" Her voice is hoarse, hair shrouding over her eyes as she reels her left arm back.

Fate will recognize this. The tell-tale pink-glow of Nanoha's gauntlet as mana is funneled right into the blue armored cuff and knuckles of her glove. Because with what has to be the dregs of Nanoha's strength she launches forward enough to viciously swing that arm, gauntlet exploding in an eruption of mana as she forcibly reactive purges that segment of her armor to empower that vicious little left hook with strength a nine year old should just not have, the resultant explosion, hit or miss, will render her sleeve smoldering from the shoulder down in this wild reprisal to seek out justice and recompense.

COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi has used Left Hook on Ren Aizawa.
COMBAT: Nanoha Takamachi has finished attacking.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa narrowly counters Nanoha Takamachi's Left Hook, taking 6 Fatigue damage!  Ren Aizawa's Reverse ability activates!
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa's counterattack, Hammer Fall, partially gets through, doing 7 Fatigue damage to Nanoha Takamachi!  Stagger applied to Nanoha Takamachi!

<Pose Tracker> Endo Naoki [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Endo's doing better. He's not in the best shape, his sword battered and glowing erratically, steam puffing out of it and purple light flaring. There's a large portion of him that's not feeling too good, but he's angry enough that he ignores nearly all of it as he turns to make another lunge.

When he sees the hammer coming he tries to move. His Device pings him, and he throws himself to the side. Not fast enough. It hits dead-center, the smashing through the barrier that Fallen Stern erects and slamming into the boy's chest with an ugly, cracking sound. The force of it lifts him off the ground, a ragged gasp of breath escaping his lips before he drops to the ground.

In the corner of his eye, for the few seconds he can still process things like thoughts, he can see Nanoha intercepting that hammer, Ren's crumpled form, and the other mages still left standing. For just a moment, he feels ashamed. And then he just feels nothing.

<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [None] has posed.

While the crackling wall of lightning she has put between herself and her foe is strong, it cannot stop the wave of superheated air. She recoils as the searing wave strikes her, putting up an arm reflexively in front of her face to block it. When it is finished, her skin is reddened. An eye which had just barely recovered from a fist to it opens a crack, only to be met pain. She feels like she's been broiled alive.

...Just in time to see the spinning hammer coming right at her. It is close enough that she has no hope of getting out of the way of what looks like death itself.

Releasing a hand from the haft, she prays her protection will be enough as she raises, it palm out. <DEFEN->

She hears a sickening crack, and a crunch, as the Warhammer instead impacts against a blur of white in front of her. When it stops, she sees the red hair peaking out of the top of her form. She need not have bothered, and that realization stuns her. The surprise in her eyes can be felt by everyone on the battlefield. Her jaw works, moving, but no sound comes out of it.

In that one moment.. that one moment, she feels genuinely touched. She has no idea what to say, dumbfounded and struck silent. It doesn't last, as she shoves it deep down within her, trying to bury it, but not quite succeeding. The rebuke that blurts from her lips is meant to have the edges of sharp anger, but it leaves her lips with just as much wonder, and.. perhaps caring as well. "Why would you do such a foolish thing!?"

And then the girl moves towards the man, standing with such strength and puissance, and something in her soul cries out against it. It was like watching her in a suicide charge and the sound from Fate is like a snarl of denial. While she was often so frustrated by this girl, while she didn't understand her at all. She didn't want such a kind soul to die. It was such kindness that she didn't want to believe it existed.

Her hand that raised for protection, is now raised upwards, all of the remaining orbs of power coming to her, and merging within her hand. It begins to shape, taking the form of a javelin of lightning that a demigoddess might wield. <<You're going to want to start moving.>> It's a telepathic message in Nanoha's head, it sounds.. almost pleading, despite the command to it.

COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has used Gathering Strength on Fate Testarossa.
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has finished attacking.
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa accepts Fate Testarossa's Gathering Strength, taking 0 Fatigue damage!

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

This was the look of a desperate man. Losing is not something he takes well at all. Long gone is the formerly cool countenance he wore at the beginning of this scuffle. His face is full of something dark. Animalistic, even. His chest heaves, long hair spilling into his face. He doesn't even look to see that Endo is downed. Nanoha's words cause the blood inside of him to boil. "You... You..." He says, unable to form the proper insult he wants to at the moment. He's just too damn /pissed/ at the way things have turned out. Why did that little brat have to be so damn selfless?!

The tiny redhead rushes at him then, delivering an explosive punch to the gut that causes his eyes to bug out and blood to be coughed up from somewhere deep inside of him. But this slight does not go unpunished. Broken Ground whizzes back into view, choosing to make impact with Nanoha's small form yet again.

...And yet she still stands. How? To say he is speechless would be an understatement. Hand clasped over his abdomen, he jumps back, ignoring the pain that shoots through him. His other hand is held out, allowing the warhammer to resettle itself within his grasp. Glaring at the two tiny mage girls, he turns tail and streaks off into the distance, abandoning this fight. For now.

<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [None] has posed.

The man may be retreating, but he has the jewel seed. Fate doesn't intend to allow that stand. And while he's fast.. well. Let's just say she had a good amount of experience at high speed combat. As she continues to sight him, her wrist turning subtly to aim the gleaming javelin, "Bardiche."


"Spark End!" She flings it. It streaks towards his position like a bolt of lightning, before erupting into a pillar of riotous pillar that pierces the clouds themselves.

She doesn't watch, instead she turns to Nanoha, her teeth gritting together as she looks at her, searchingly for answers. She doesn't ask, 'Are you okay?' but given the look she's giving her.. she might as well have.

COMBAT: FINISHER! Fate Testarossa has used Spark End on Ren Aizawa.
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has finished attacking.
COMBAT: Ren Aizawa fails to counter Fate Testarossa's Finisher, Spark End, taking 132 Fatigue damage!  Ren Aizawa is unable to keep fighting!
COMBAT: FINISHER! Ren Aizawa's counterattack, Molten Bolt, fails to get through, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Fate Testarossa!

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.


The warning causes the fleeing mage to turn around, spying the javelin heading full tilt for him. Against his better judgment, he stops and faces it down. Holding out Broken Ground, he channels all of his remaining mana into meeting the blonde's mage's magical might. His device glows, and steam pours out of the vents in its sides as he lets out a primal yell of fury. Right at that moment, a glorious bolt of energy leaps forward, twisting itself into a hook-shaped spear that clashes mightily with the javelin. Though in the end? It's not enough.

Fate's lance gets through, and pierces the angry mage right in the chest. His barrier jacket thankfully holds up enough to stop him from being run completely though. His eyes sort of cloud over, and he's driven back. Faaaar back. Like... out of view and into the wild blue yonder, back.

He's gone.

<Pose Tracker> Nanoha Takamachi [Infinity Institute (3)] has posed.

Like a small tempest of fury, even in the reprisal of that hammer swinging back in from a blind spot, Nanoha doesn't stop swinging. Though her blows are far less effective. Even if she hits, he might not feel the steady thumping of a tiny fist as she almost singlemindedly keeps trying to hammer her feelings home into the man with that tiny fist and those pain-dulled eyes.

And then comes the message whispering into her mind. That she needs to move.

It's a sluggish half second before Nanoha's body follows the instruction of her brain, disengaging with a backward lurch that lets her just tumbleroll to the ground some distance away holding her chest. Her first concern is immediately both Endo and Ren, one arm clutching her bruised ribs, Device in the other, she winces the whole way as she scootches towards Endo's crash-landing spot and... Pauses. Dizzy she may be, there's no mistaking that she recognizes the raw devastating power in that spear of golden light, gaze following it on its entire path.


That though... That is the sound of Nanoha struggling. The injured, gasping, redhead, hooks her arms under Endo's and proceeds to try dragging him towards Ren to check on her as well.

But now she stops. Why did she do that? Fate's question only dawns upon her now, as she's faced with those scarlet eyes yet again.


Because why? She... Has no answer. Not after their last meeting, the flickering memories of which resume stabbing at her heart like a thorn of ice.

"Because..." She tries again, and can only mouth words with no voice to them for a long beat, just stopping to squeeze her eyes shut. Endo and Ren probably won't hear if she calls the blonde by name.

"F-Fate... Please. ... Help me get them somewhere else..." Nanoha changes the topic, voice cracking to an injured mewl.

<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [None] has posed.

Fate turns away from Nanoha, looking searchingly towards the sky. There's no sign of the aggressor, though something in her mind tells her that she's the one that attacked him, after all. The fallen girl meant nothing to her, right?


The one speaking to her should mean even less. She was something far more than an obstacle, given her persistence. She can barely hear her, as she struggles, considering going to find the man who was almost assuredly vulnerable and helpless somewhere. She could easily take his jewel seed, couldn't she?

She could just as easily take even more from the girl speaking to her right now. Her mother's words ring out to her like a haze of white noise, demanding she do just that. Her neck slowly turns to regard the girl with impassivity, with such slowness that Nanoha might swear she feels each neckbone creak individually.

"F-Fate... Please. ... Help me get them somewhere else..."

She was hurting, suffering. Because she took a blow that was meant for her, and here she was, almost helpless herself, asking Fate to aid her in doing something selfless. Her eyes close briefly, as a domineering sound continues to ring in her eyes like a constant tinnitus demanding she do what must be done.

Her arm trembles upon Bardiche's haft, phantom pains searing across her back as if she could feel each individual scar. And then all of a sudden, the head folds back, releasing vents of steam. He then shimmers and becomes a triangle on the back of her hand. <STANDBY MODE.>

A breath is sharply exhaled, her entire body looks like it's shaking, before she finally steadies herself, and descends. She wordlessly hooks her own arm beneath the fallen teenage boys', but doesn't look at the other girl. She just can't right now.