2016-04-30 - Locks and Keys 3

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A falling leaf viewing party is interrupted when Mimete unleashes a daimon on Naru Osaka to capture her Pure Heart. Instead, a Key to the City pops out. The fight over it commences promptly, and is complicated by the first appearance of Sailor Pluto, in pursuit of Homura Akemi for crimes against the timestream.


Mami Tomoe, Usagi Tsukino, Fuu Hououji, Takeo Akamizu, Lilian Abarth, Garnet, Hikaru Shidou, Chitose Shiratori, Steven Universe, Homura Akemi, Setsuna Meioh

GM: Mai Tokiha


Asakusa Traditional District

OOC - IC Date:

04-30-2016 - 10-18-2014

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> C'est La Vie - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ib30SyX3QLw

Amid the hustle and the bustle of a city fully gripped in October's cultural shifts, it's nice to take some time to appreciate the natural shifts of the season. It is decidedly autumn, and green has become a colour in rare supply. Gold and orange and crimson are the hues of the trees, the arboreal landscape resembling little blazes of good cheer everywhere. And on top of that, those leaves are just beginning to fall...

This is, of course, among the peak hours for Asakusa. While not organized into explicit festival days, everyone who cares knows that this is the best time to watch the leaves falling. Much like watching cherry blossoms, it's a time to spread out picnic blankets, enjoy some nice warm tea and snacks (for which there are naturally countless vendors), and watch gently drifting foliage in the breeze. It'd make for a purely relaxing environment...

...if not for countless thousands of people having the same idea.

Still, even with the hustle and bustle, it's a nice atmosphere - and with school done for the day, students have turned out in droves from all schools. It's making for a very crowded atmosphere, one in which it's much easier to go with the flow. For those who don't respect the flow of things...well, it's rough going.

Here's one girl who has rough going. She's dressed perhaps a bit warmly even for the season, between the trenchcoat, the headscarf, the second scarf, and the huge reflective sunglasses. She jostles bystanders without a care in the world, paying little heed to who finds a corner of the metal briefcase she carries, looking between a cellphone and the faces of those nearby with increasing irritation. Her victims get no apologies, only snatches of her muttering. "Can't believe I have to do this...Why'd Kaoli make me do her dirty work... Was going to go to the DARTS concert...Finally!"

On a nice checkered blanket, a rather depleted picnic basket looking rather sorry, Naru Osaka looks up from her conversation. "Um, excuse me? I was talking to my friend - can I help you? If you're looking for the, uh..." She trails off awkwardly.

"Yes! Yes you can!" Off come the sunglasses, flung into the air - with the trenchcoat quickly following. Revealed is a girl with wavy short orange-blond hair and a rather alarming black outfit. Most prominent are the poofy skirt and the black star shown almost as her emblem - and Mimete has a rather maniacal grin. "I have been looking all over for you, miss Osaka - and it would help me immensely if you would just give me your Pure Heart!"

The briefcase springs open, a little seed flying out - and almost immediately colliding with a falling leaf. Horrible, noxious smoke erupts from the point of impact...but when it clears, there's a monster. It looks like a red-skinned woman, bristling with a dress-armor made from countless giant fiery-hued leaves. She's looming over Naru, having bullied aside anyone in her path, and she's inhaling deeply over the Juuban student's mouth. Naru slowly goes limp...

"Ahahaha! There, Kaolinite, there's your stupid Pure Hea- What the hell is that?!" There is no crystal, and the Daimon seems as puzzled as her master - because instead of a crystal, there is a key. It gleams, and then begins to sing...

Sing an amateur rendition of 'C'est La Vie', in Naru's voice.

The Daimon catches the key, and seems rather puzzled...and for the moment, both master and monster seem utterly baffled.

COMBAT: Mai Tokiha transforms into U-Koyo!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has fully healed herself. She is now ready to take on 11 opponents!
<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (5)] has posed.

"A trip to the Traditional District? That sounds like fun! Do you think there will be ice cream?"

This cause of a journey came shortly after Steven Universe finished with school for the day. A field trip, except done so outside of school. A change of clothes, and the boy was off! Only, something is different on arrival.

There is no stout boy with the gem in his navel. Theres just... a pink Lion. Wandering around. It garners some attention from passers by, as, well, one doesn't see a Lion just walking around out in the open. Of course, stranger things seem afoot, even for this abnormality happening. Most notably, a giant woman! THe Lion seems to make a bristling gesture, and a boyish voice comes from inside the mane. "What is it?" is asked, as a poofy headed Steven pokes out. He stares forward at the event unfolding, and very slowly sinks back in. "Maaaan, I wanted ice cream, too... Well, guess we better do something, huh Garnet?" he says to his caretaker.

"Lion, get closer!" the boy says, and the pink cat does so, closing distance incredibly quickly. Steven re-orients himself out of the mane, and takes more of a riding stance upon Lion. The boy summons a rosate shield, as he calls out. "Hey! What are you doing there?"

The scene was heavily remniscent of the glassblowing teacher and that item, on the distant school trip for some reason.

COMBAT: Steven Universe transforms into Steven Quartz Universe!
<Pose Tracker> Homura Akemi [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.

Homura Akemi doesn't normally go to Asakusa... but she doesn't normally go anywhere that's not school, a hunt for Witches, or otherwise related to her mission. (Or so she tells herself.) She is standing in a purple coat, a little to the side, with her hands jammed into her pockets. She watches a table, where several girls her age are sipping tea and eating a warm cinnamon bun.

The feeling of quiet nostalgia, so strong it borders on resentment, is the usual drumbeat of her life. Madoka isn't here today -- and she doesn't want her to be here. She came for a reason.

She doesn't look terribly surprised when she turns to look at Mimete, and those violet eyes register no particular outrage at the attack upon Naru Osaka. No, it's the key that her eyes are drawn to. She regards it for a long moment, then she steps forward. Purple light swirls around her, her jacket and jeans vanishing into a long white coat and trailing violet ribbons. A heeled foot steps forward.

A hand reaches into her hair, flicks it out to the side, before she she looks at Mimete, then at the Daimon. "I want that the key," she says. "It won't assist you in your goal. ...Not that you'll accomplish it, Mimete. You don't have the skill."

Diplomacy, Homura Akemi style.

COMBAT: Homura Akemi transforms into Puella Magi Homura!
COMBAT: Homura Akemi has used Timely Insight on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Chitose Shiratori [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Chitose Shiratori was here in the Asakusa Tradition District! In fact she's been out and about a lot more than she would have liked. This, shockingly, had nothing to do with her new magical MP3 player. She didn't want to flee from its musical assault (well, okay, she /did/ but that's not why she is out here), nor was this another attempt by her father to get her to go outside and get some fresh air (okay, it /was/, but Chitose had plans to go out and about anyway). Instead she's here to study. Mostly languages, of course, so she comes to the Traditional District to listen to people. Not to actually hear what people are saying, but to listen to how they say it.

So she's just milling around, walking around the district and taking in the auditory sounds of the place. She's also got an college-level English textbook in her arms, so far closed. Then again... a little bit of time to stop and take in a chapter of her textbook would be great. So she turns a corner to head towards a more green section of Asakusa...

Only to find some giant red-skinned leaf woman. She stops once she sees it, and she especially stops once she hears what's coming from it. She squints, trying to determine what exactly it is singing. "Is that 'C'est La Vie'?

<Another key?>

"Another key." Chitose pulls her device from her hair and in a moment of bright light Chitose now wears a Barrier Jacket, White Omen now comfortably seated around Chitose's arm. Chitose snaps her arm up and the Device fires a number of small bolts at the monster. While she's doing this, she takes a moment to quip to her Device. "We probably should get this one."

<The combined songs will drive you mad.>

Chitose stops, both in firing and in thought. "Well, we can dispose of the first one. Maybe we could ask a friend to hold on to it."


Chitose is silent for a few moments. "We'll figure something out."

COMBAT: Chitose Shiratori transforms into Barrier Jacket!
COMBAT: Chitose Shiratori has used Light Bolt on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Usagi Tsukino [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

"That's surprisingly sweet of h- Wait, he did what!?" Usagi just stares at Naru for a while, looking shocked. Shocked enough that one of the little finger sandwiches falls out of her mouth, leaving crumbs on her face. But then her lip twitches, a hand drifts up to her mouth, and a muffled snort comes out of her nose.

It's not long before she's rolled backwards on the picnic blanket, arms crossed over her chest, her legs even kicking a little as she laughs uproariously. There's a brown leaf in one of her long blonde twintails when she gets up again, as she wipes a finger against her eyes and a sleeve against her mouth, "Umino- he sang that..." She giggles once and, "...I can't... Naru-chan you sure know how to pick 'em."

This picnic had been a lovely idea, a way for two friends to catch up and share. So rudely interrupted by the shadow of the woman falling over them. But even as Naru begins to call her on that... Usagi just looks up and stares. At first her expression has this indignant quality, and she's nodding in time with Naru, "That's right! This is a private..."

She stops speaking all to suddenly, the indignant look fades slowly, as Usagi gets a better look at her. The hairs on the back of her neck are standing up. This feeling of dread washing over her just a short moment before it happens and the Deathbuster reveals herself in all of her selfish glory, "Naru-chan!"

In that moment Usagi tries to scramble to her feet, losing a sandal in the process. She thought to push Naru out of the way, but suddenly there's so much smoke, and she finds it stinging her eyes and choking sensation down her throat preventing her from taking action. And when it clears enough for her to see. The Daimon is already inhaling, close to Naru's mouth. She doesn't know what it's doing, expecting a crystal due to the nature of the briefcase but what she sees is something different entirely. And the voice...

However she doesn't pause to get a better look at it. She instead runs for cover, which is awkward with only one shoe on, presses her back to a tree, and lifts a hand skyward, the other over her chest.

"Moon Crystal Power - Make Up!"

Ribbons flow over her, a hint of angelic feathered wings and...

On a tree branch, partially covered in hues of yellow, orange, red and brown, there's a Pretty Guardian in a Sailor Fuku, forehead adorned with holy tiara. "HOLD IT RIGHT THERE! A teenage girl's song covers are sacrosanct in their privacy. They should only be released if they decide they're ready, and always forgotten if they decide to delete them from their accounts after uploading them on impulse! I'll never forgive anyone who outs them like..."

Her face screws up as she remembers the way it was inhaled straight out of her mouth, "...like that! Sailor-suited Pretty Guardian of Love and Justice: Sailor Moon! In the name of the moon..." She puts one hand over the other, pointing at the Daimon bedecked in leaves and it's egocentric mistress, "...I will punish you! Now get away from her right now!"

COMBAT: Usagi Tsukino transforms into Sailor Moon!
COMBAT: Sailor Moon has used In The Name Of The Moon on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

On a normal day, the Infinity archery team would still be practicing. Given the really gorgeous weather, though, the team captain led a shorter and more focused practice today - making sure the team's best archers are still up to snuff, and giving the less-experienced and less-skilled archers more time to go over the essentials of their sport once again. As one of the team's best archers, Fuu found herself spending more time coaching her juniors than actually practicing ...

But since the reward for their hard work was a trip to Asakusa to see the temple and market at the peak of autumn, with the trees' foliage as red as in any deck of hanafuda cards, even Fuu has to admit it's worth it. Even when she overhears something about 'give me your Pure Heart'.

Then there's a monster, and a mysterious silver key, and an unusual lack of panicked screaming. Not that the last is necessarily a *bad* sign, but Fuu pauses to suggest to the team captain, "I believe the temple holds an observation deck with an even better view of Ueno Park ... perhaps it's worth seeing if we can request access to it?"

She's pulling that out of her (nonexistent) hat, admittedly, but it's the best she can come up with in a pinch to try and get her teammates out of harm's way. In the meantime, she excuses herself (as politely as always) and seeks a quiet spot to transform.

A couple of moments later, the Magic Knight of Wind makes her presence known with a call of "Winds of Admonishment!" and an effort to conjure a binding whirlwind around the Daimon. "I'm terribly sorry, youma-san," the Wind Knight greets the monster and its mistress as she approaches and bows politely, "but I'm afraid we can't let you abscond with that key."

COMBAT: Fuu Hououji transforms into Magic Knight!
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji has used Winds of Admonishment on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Hikaru Shidou [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Why is Hikaru in Asakusa Tradition District? Because she can go to other districts, why not here?

Seriously, though, she's here because she has nothing better to do with her time than go exploring and look around. She's out and about and walking along with a spring in her step, wearing a casual form of dress complete with a beret in her hair. She looks so cheerful as she walks along, looking around at the various sights to see since she's not used to a place like this. It's almost like taking a trip to another land for Hikaru. Unfortunately, though, that trip is about to be cut short as she spots what's happening up ahead.

"Always when I'm enjoying my free time! Oh well!" Hikaru thinks to herself as she ducks behind a nearby building to pull out her glove-jewel and slip into her hand, while reciting those magic words...

"Belief becomes power... Flames guide me!"

And the flames do guide her as they swirl around her, shielding her from view as she turns into the Magic Knight of Fire. Once she emerges from her hiding spot, the Fire Knight rushes into the fray and, through some funny coincidence, arrives alongside the Wind Knight. She nods and smiles a little, but otherwise doesn't acknowledge her ally. Instead she points at the Daimon. "I'm gonna burn you up for what you've done! You can't have that key!" Then she pantomimes like she's shooting an arrow or something, which is more than just pantomiming given that a magical flaming projectile shaped like an arrow is flying at the Daimon now!

COMBAT: Hikaru Shidou transforms into Magic Knight of Fire!
COMBAT: Hikaru Shidou has used Fire Arrow on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Garnet [None] has posed.

Garnet has had a busy couple of weeks. She's been increasing the rate of normal Crystal Gem missions into overdrive, hopping around the world, investigating locations of suspected Gem monsters and poofing them before they can make their way to Tokyo.

She knows their arrival is all but inevitable, but the thought of a gem monster appearing unexpectedly during another monster attack fills her with dread.

In Tokyo new magical threats can arise at any moment.

Like this moment.


She had hoped to take a break from her vigilance, to spend a quiet day with Steven watching the leaves change color, but it was not to be.

Time and possibility flow like a river, and today it has taken the fork to rapids.

She nods to Steven, and wordlessly summons her fearsome gauntlets to her hands, they appear in a brilliant flash of reddish-heliotropic light!

Rather than rush ahead into the unknown and since they have yet to mount an offensive, Garnet concentrates on the unknown foe, using her Future Vision to try to divine the path they will take, and what they're capable of...

COMBAT: Garnet transforms into Garnet's Got Gauntlets!
COMBAT: Garnet has used Future Vision on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Takeo Akamizu [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Takeo was on his way back from his meeting with his Teammate and martial arts lessons. Walking through the park, hands in his pocket, his thoughts drifting all over as he was thinking about everything that was going on. His sister, he needed to find a cure and maybe Eri was right, he really should just go visit her. He just ... Just couldnt.

Then there was simply everything else. He needed to find a way to explain his feelings. Again. Something he just ... Well he just couldnt. At least he got Sparkles into the Equestrian Cub on campus. All it costs him is some apples, hay, and a few extra nights of racing. At least he can do THAT.

Hes lost in these myriad of thoughts when Mimete brings forth a key right in front of him. He blinks, and then tilts his head when he hears the words: Pure Heart.

That was what the Black Knight had said.

As transformations begin to spring into existence around him, Takeo grabs his medallion and calls outm "I SWEAR TO DEFEND THE INNOCENT!"

Lightning slams repeatedly into him, each accompanied by thunder that roars around him. The Grass flattens around with each thunderous strike, and with each lightning strike a piece of armor forms. Until he holds his hand out and a final lightning strike is caught and forms into the shining blade of Arondight.

As the sound of thunder fades, Lancelot stands there and twirls his blade in a flourish. He points the blade toward the monster and is about to call out a catchy one liner when Sailor Moon is suddenly there and calls out her traditional line.

He blinks a few times then nods, stepping up next to her. "YEAH! What she said!"

COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Sailor Moon's In The Name Of The Moon, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Sailor Moon is Psyched!
<Pose Tracker> Fiat Silver [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

Where HAS Lilian Abarth been?

Well, mostly going to school, but the Fiat Group's target for theft has always been fine art. Much is held by private citizens. Not everything ends up in the news. And that's why Lilian Abarth is sitting at a picnic eating imported sorpresata with her erstwhile aunt-we'll-go-with-that Miranda and an unidentified gentleman wearing a porkpie hat. They were conversing happily when -

"Well, that's different," says Miranda.

"Sure is," says Edward Rucci, who is the man in the porkpie hat.

Lilian almost chokes on her coffee.

"Are you going to be staying for this?" Miranda asks Lilian.

"Staying?" asks Rucci.

"Of course," Miranda tells him: "There's some things she and her partner can do. I'm quite charmed by it all, and I've not even been paying the most attention in the world."

Lilian's face burns.

"Well, we should get clear at any rate," Edward says, standing up and proffering an arm to Miranda. To Lilian, he says with a grin, "Good luck. I'll see if I can watch."


A blue streak comes down from up high, which is probably because Fiat Silver is a creature of Heaven, and not because Lilian Abarth hid in an alleyway before transforming. Streaking down, the form solidifies, or at least resolves, as it gets near to -- the Youma, just as lightning and other blasts fall in towards it. For a moment, Fiat Silver is stymied. What does she do here?

She opts to land off to the side, a bit aways from the youma, and raise her voice. "You know, you really ought to give that voice back," she says, her mask gleaming. "Speaking as a professional, something as rude as stealing a young woman's song makes /all/ of us look bad."

Then she tosses her green hair with one hand. Hopefully Homura won't press charges.

COMBAT: Fiat Silver has used Cutting Remarks on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to brace Fuu Hououji's Winds of Admonishment, taking 26 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Fuu Hououji is Psyched!  Cripple applied to Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to counter Hikaru Shidou's Fire Arrow, taking 24 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha's counterattack, Leaf Mimete Alone!, fails to get through, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Hikaru Shidou!
<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Surprising some, but probably not everyone, Mami Tomoe is one of those who cares about the natural beauty of the shifting seasons. Indeed, this year she finds autumn particularly poetic. She considered inviting someone else. ...There are, unusually for her, what feels like many people she could have come here with.

But not today.

The blonde has a small blanket set up, in a nice, soft yellow, and her own lunch that she of course made. More to the point, even amidst the crowds, Mami Tomoe is enjoying a nice cup of tea. She doesn't even look at the crowds, instead sipping from her absurdly nice cup and looking up at the leaves. ...This might be strange to an observer except that she's wearing a perfectly arranged Ohtori High uniform, and Ohtori kids are always weird. Her hair is perfect. It's a lovely, crisp day...

The commotion almost doesn't get her attention. A flash of color doesn't particularly matter to her. But it's very much almost. Mami holds her teacup at her lips, her eyes sliding to the side, to a girl recently in a trenchcoat, staring down at... Well, she can't see who over the crowds. Her eyes harden slightly as she sees how many pulled out of the way, how she's holding somoene /up/...


Gently, Mami sets down her teacup...

And it's no dramatic entrance this time. She simply slips bacward, away from the staring crowd, and moments later...

"Akemi-chan, you're such an unpleasant girl. That's a very rude thing to say."

The voice is smooth, feminine... and belongs to someone familiar. Behind Homura Akemi steps a girl in white-and-black and yellow, her hat perfectly arranged amidst her perfect hair. The Puella Magi has her arms crossed, a perfect eyebrow raised just so.

"You should be more like Sailor Moon."

Her words might be so pleasant as to mask the rifle she's already pointing at the Daimon. But probably not. "This will be more pleasant for everyone involved if you run away now."

COMBAT: Mami Tomoe has used Really! on Homura Akemi.
COMBAT: Homura Akemi narrowly dodges Mami Tomoe's Really!, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Homura Akemi is Quipped!  Homura Akemi's Fade ability activates!  Homura Akemi's Flash ability activates!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly dodges Garnet's Future Vision, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Analysis performed by Garnet!  Cripple applied to Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to dodge Homura Akemi's Timely Insight, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Mai Tokiha is Quipped!  Analysis performed by Homura Akemi!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha perfectly braces Lancelot's Lightning III, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Critical Brace!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Chitose Shiratori's Light Bolt, taking 7 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to dodge Fiat Silver's Cutting Remarks, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Fiat Silver is Psyched!  Stun applied to Mai Tokiha!
<Pose Tracker> Setsuna Meioh [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Steam curls beneath Setsuna Meioh's chin, rising from fresh hot tea in a paper cup, and insulates her face from the October chill in the air. She has a park bench to herself beneath a great orange-and-red-fringed tree. From beneath her deep green bangs she watches the throngs pass, her eyes never settling on any one person too long. Setsuna is in Asakusa this afternoon, still outfitted as a student of Infinity's university program, heeding a tug on an extra sense that plucks at her mind like the relentless ticking of a grandfather clock.

The Guardian of Time is here following the echoes of a disturbance yet to come, and the only outward sign of her inner tension is the regular tapping of one fingernail against her cup, hands curled around its comforting warmth.

A commotion not too far from her, a shout and an unexpected lilt of sung music, draws Setsuna's head around. She spots the gleam of a Key and the red-leafed monster, just as she'd known she would, and stands with a swish of her skirt after setting her cup of tea down carefully beneath the bench. The strangeness of the scene draws all eyes, and so she has no trouble slipping into a dark nook between the tea vendor's cart and the tree shading them.

Moments later the tree's autumn filled branches rustle and Sailor Pluto drops from them, outfitted in her dark-trimmed uniform and holding the slender silvery Garnet Rod in one hand. A simple black domino mask obscures part of her face, adding to the image of a mysterious new magical girl. However, she makes no bold proclamations, launches no attacks. Instead she stands, still and straight and impassive as the Rod she carries, and lets the battle's winds whip her long hair.

If the flow of Time urges her to action she will listen... For now, Sailor Pluto observes, as she has ever done.

COMBAT: Setsuna Meioh transforms into Sailor Pluto!
COMBAT: Sailor Pluto has used Arrival of a Mysterious Warrior!! on Sailor Pluto.
COMBAT: Sailor Pluto accepts Sailor Pluto's Arrival of a Mysterious Warrior!!, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Mimete looks at her leaf-clad Daimon. U-Koyo looks at her master in the Witches Five. Naru's key sings on. There's a moment of utter awkwardness.

"Why is it a key?! Stupid Kaolinite, I bet she planned this! 'Oooh, Mimete's so beautiful and clever, we need to find a way to stop her making the rest of us look bad! Let's steal the Pure Heart and put a stupid singing key in its place!' That's it, that's exactly what they must have done - well don't think that Mimete of the Witches 5 will take this insult lying down! I'm going to take this key, and prove to- what are you doing interrupting me?!" She whirls around, mid-rant - and is met with a great deal of interruption.

There's a Lion. Why is there a Lion, and why did it eat a child - it doesn't matter, that can be someone else's problem. More to the point, there's a girl in purple insulting Mimete to her face - and the blonde girl gets furious in response. "Don't have the ski- what do you know?! You and your gloomy outfit - do you think you're any better than me at getting things done?!" A hail of bolts hammers into the monster's side as Sailor Moon makes her entrance, Mimete whirling to accuse her just as pointedly. "You're barking up the wrong tree - I'd happily reveal these kinds of embarrassments to the world, but this one isn't on me! It's whoever's trying to mess with me, but-"

A fiery arrow blazes in. The monster moves to intercept it - but a sudden windstorm catches it off guard, hauling it forward to meet the flames and become engulfed in a brief firestorm. As it clears, lightning smashes down - but singed, and still clutching that key, the monster unleashes a brief storm of leaves to intercept. The Daimon lands heavily amid blazing colour, but seems more furious than crippled.

A few more arrivals, further enraging Mimete. Lilian arrives, met with an even higher temper. "I wasn't trying to! I was just supposed to get her heart, and maybe I'd luck out and get a bonus with it, but a stupid singing key wasn't what I wanted! And as for you-" She whirls on Pluto, blinks, and turns to Mami. Stares for a moment. ".../thank/ you! But they're both unpleasant, to be frank - and I've had enough of these stupid pranks!"

Mimete stomps her foot, holds up one hand - and catches the sunglasses she flung earlier, placing them back on her face. (The trenchcoat, headscarf, and backup scarf land on several nearby and now annoyed bystanders.) "I'm not playing Kaolinite's stupid game any longer than I have to - U-Koyo, deal with this. And don't forget that key, I am shoving it in her stupid face!" With that, she turns to stomp off.

Intercepting her, unfortunately, is nearly impossible - the leaf Daimon lets out a terrible screech, and unleashes a blinding storm of leaves in all directions. As the autumnal gust obscures Mimete's departure, the Daimon hurls crimson leaves after Lancelot, Hikaru, Chitose, and Fuu - and beyond simply looking like fire, they explode in fiery blasts on impact. It rushes forward moments later, swiping at Fiat, Garnet, and Sailor Moon with oversized leaf-blades - strange and disposable weapons that seem to cling with every strike...

And with its other hand, it slowly brings that singing key to its mouth, to swallow for safe-keeping. Only a few moments before it's gone...

COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Blind Insult on Homura Akemi.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Heaps Of Leaves on Sailor Moon.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Heaps Of Leaves on Fiat Silver.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Heaps Of Leaves on Garnet.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Lancelot.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Hikaru Shidou.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Fuu Hououji.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Chitose Shiratori.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Dance Of Golden Leaves on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha accepts Mai Tokiha's Dance Of Golden Leaves, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Surge applied to Mai Tokiha!  Cleanse! All of Mai Tokiha's debuffs are cleared!
COMBAT: Lancelot fails to dodge Mai Tokiha's Crimson Beauty, taking 35 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has started an item contest over 'Naru's Singing Key'! For more information, please see: +help Items. To join the contest, +item/join Mai Tokiha. You must join now if you are going to be in contention to possess the item. If you decide ICly to involve yourself with the item later but do not +item/join now, you cannot succeed at an Item Grab, nor determine the item's owner on a knockout.
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji has joined Mai Tokiha's item contest. Please check it with +item Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Sailor Moon has joined Mai Tokiha's item contest. Please check it with +item Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mami Tomoe has joined Mai Tokiha's item contest. Please check it with +item Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji narrowly braces Mai Tokiha's Crimson Beauty, taking 16 Fatigue damage!  Blind applied to Fuu Hououji!
COMBAT: Fiat Silver has joined Mai Tokiha's item contest. Please check it with +item Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Homura Akemi has joined Mai Tokiha's item contest. Please check it with +item Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Sailor Moon's counterattack, Make like a tree and-, partially gets through, doing 9 Fatigue damage to Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Chitose Shiratori narrowly dodges Mai Tokiha's Crimson Beauty, taking 10 Fatigue damage!  Chitose Shiratori's Fade ability activates!  Chitose 
COMBAT: Homura Akemi narrowly dodges Mai Tokiha's Blind Insult, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Homura Akemi's Fade ability activates!  Homura Akemi's Flash ability activates!
<Pose Tracker> Lancelot [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

"Leaves? You're throwing leaves at an armored Knight pf -" Lancelot begins to laugh at the clearly pathetic attack before he is slammed into and knocked flat on his back mid laugh. He blinks at the sky and says very calmly. "Mental note. Dodge leaves." He then slowly pushes himself to his feet and looks to the Daimon.

If he had sleeves he would have rolled them up. Instead he walks forward and says very calmly, "You ever see what happens to the leaf when he meets the sword?" He then lashes with Arondight sending a wave of lightning that crackle and surge as he attacks. "LIGHTNING SLASH!"

COMBAT: Lancelot has used Lightning Slash on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (5)] has posed.

Steven sees four things that make this situation a problem. Theres a bad person. A gigantic woman the bad person summoned. An innocent person on the ground. And finally, an item pulled from the innocent person they have. Yeah, this is exactly like the glass studio incident.

"Put uh, whatever that thing is down right now! It isn't yours!"

And of course, out come the people with powers! Like, from every angle! How do they know about events like this so fast?! Beings he has seen before appear from all around. Sailor Moon (yay!), The knights with element powers, The folks with regal-looking magical armor, And that one guy that has both awesome armor and weaponry. As always, newcomers he has not seen before either.

When Sailor Moon denounces the enemy, he almost vibrates with excitement. Seeing other friends, such as the wind and fire knights jump into the fray is amazing as well!

There is just something about getting to fight a bad monster with not only the Crystal Gems, but friends he has made along the way in his new life in Japan that is just, well, indescribable.

"You better stop what you are doing, or else you are really gonna get it! 'Cause now we're here to save the day! We are the Crystal Gems!" The boy looks down at Lion. "I think I should work on that line, feels... backward." He looks back up and stands heroically upon Lion's back. "I'll stop you, or else my name isn't Steven Universe!"

"Lion! Those badguys take things from inside people!" He looks up at the shining object about to be swallowed. "Its so high up... We need to make an opening for others to get it! A bunch of these magical goodguys can fly! Let's go!" A look voer towards Garnet and Fuu-- rather, the Wind Knight. "You can reach it! We will distract it!"

COMBAT: Steven Universe has used AND STEVEN! on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Fiat Silver has left Mai Tokiha's item contest. Please check it with +item Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Fiat Silver perfectly dodges Mai Tokiha's Heaps Of Leaves, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Critical Dodge!  Fiat Silver's Fade ability activates!  Fiat Silver's Flash ability activates!
<Pose Tracker> Homura Akemi [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.


Homura can't quite hide the twitch of her eyebrow, the scowl on her face. She shoots a glare to the side at her, and for once, it's not entirely icy. There is real anger there. She remembers the hopeful look on a friend's -- one of her only friends, really -- face, before the subway door closed. Her teeth grit together. "...Shut up," she says. "This doesn't concern you, Tomoe!" It comes out too hotly to hide that she's already angry. "You should leave. Before this develops in a way neither of us would like."

But Sailor Moon is right there, and yelling -- as she knew she would be -- and she tenses a little. More, when Lancelot steps up next to her. At first, Sailor Pluto's arrival isn't even noticed -- until, with a glance, she realizes something strange.

She hasn't seen her before. Her eyes narrow, as she looks confused.

But she has to look back at Mimete and her Daimon. She frowns, as Mimete asks her pointed question.

"Yes," she answers, plainly.

Then, she shoots forward. She doesn't rely on her time magic yet; she uses acrobatics, instead. The girl does a quick flip, bringing her over those leaves flying out, and comes down at U-Koyo. Her hand swipes out, and tries to yank the Key right out of its mouth before it's too late.

COMBAT: ITEM GRAB! Homura Akemi has used Steal Time on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Steven Universe's AND STEVEN!, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Steven Universe is Psyched!  Blind and Diversion applied to Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly dodges Homura Akemi's Steal Time, taking 0 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Homura Akemi successfully grabs an item from Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to brace Lancelot's Lightning Slash, taking 8 Fatigue damage!  Lancelot is Psyched!  Stagger applied to Mai Tokiha!
<Pose Tracker> Fiat Silver [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

The woman near U-Koyo had seemed, to be frank, like a bystander to Fiat Silver. Hell, she'd thought that was the victim, maybe. As she raises up her silvered baton, she says, "The only one who will get a key shoved in their face is -"

TOO LENGTHY! You gotta keep these things snappy, Silver! A sudden storm of bursting leaves smash forwards, though not for her; instead she receives the brunt of an incoming slash with sharp yet frail leaf-like blades-- or does she? As they swipe forwards, Fiat Silver seems to gleam - and is then floating ten feet in the air, her legs tucked up.

"If the gems are coming, I would have to chase them with some silver," Fiat says, which causes something on the armored gauntlet on her forearm to groan in agony. <I cannot believe, madam, that you WENT with THAT -->

"What? It's a play on words," Fiat Silver mutters, even as she spins the baton around. A ribbonlike ray of iridescent blue comes out, spiralling at the ready as she decides, you know, maybe I won't come down there where the demon is throwing around blades.

<Even so,> Silver Scorpion harrumphs. Then he harrumphs again, for emphasis.

"Well, whatever. Telson Mode!" <Engaged.> "Let's see you swallow things --"


"-- so casually!" Fiat Silver feels a sudden burn of flop sweat run down the back of her jacketed neck, but she's committing already to lashing that whip of sorcerous force down low - to snap up and try and hit the daimon's ankle and hopefully its foot out from underneath it!

COMBAT: Fiat Silver has used Scorpio Seize on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

The Wind Knight smiles briefly towards her fire-wielding comrade as their attacks combine into a far more effective assault on the youma, and she would probably accompany the look with a thumbs-up if it weren't for the fact that the battle has still only just begun.

There's also the fact that she gets interrupted by a barrage of leaves, which slam into her hard enough to dislodge her glasses. The Wind Knight does her best to fend the leaves off, partly with a hasty barrier of wind, but she still has to recover her glasses and try to get them back on ... and at the same time, the monster is trying to secure its treasure *and* its escape.

She can't have that, can she?

A swirl of green-tinted mana flows out from her glove-jewel, materializing into a quiver full of arrows and a modestly ornate bow; she nocks an arrow to the string, trusting her instincts over her presently-impaired vision, and draws the arrow back. Her form is correct, she trusts her aim as she leads the reddish blur that is the monster ...

And the arrow flies.

She'll have to recover her glasses after that, and may totally miss that somebody else is liable to have the key by that point.

COMBAT: Fuu Hououji has used Trick Arrow Shot on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly counters Fiat Silver's Scorpio Seize, taking 6 Fatigue damage!  Mai Tokiha's Reverse ability activates!  Tangle and Trap applied to Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha's counterattack, Fall of Fall, fails to get through, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Fiat Silver!
<Pose Tracker> Garnet [None] has posed.

Garnet 's mind is flooded with possibility...

The future she sees is here, and she uses her foresight to dodge the oncoming leaves with a precognitive grace. She manages to dodge the attack, but barely, even knowing it was coming, and with great effort. Large flurries of light, airborne and rapidly moving objects are among the most difficult things to dodge.

She lands and rushes towards the demon, using the new momentum from her dash to jump up and land a mighty punch, hoping to catch it across the face and knock it off balance!

She's not familiar with the key or the reasons for struggling for it, but she sees Sailor Moon is involved, and trusts that she will do what's right.

For now there is a newly-aggressive monster that needs to be subdued, and she will attend to that in the most hands-on way possible!

COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Fuu Hououji's Trick Arrow Shot, taking 5 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Garnet has used Jawbreaker! on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Hikaru Shidou [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

The barrage of leaves also interrupts the Fire Knight's attempts at planning another course of action here. Namely because the leaves strike her harder than she hoped they would, causing her to stagger backwards and drop onto her rear. "Oww!" She says as she gets up. "That was really unfair!" She grabs her sword and wields it carefully before staring at the monster. "You were just lucky that time. Next time, don't expect me to let you hit me that easily!"

Twirling her sword a little as if checking the blade, the Fire Knight steps towards the monster and raises her sword. "I'm gonna cut you down to size, you just watch this!" She brings her sword down, attempting to slash at it.

COMBAT: Hikaru Shidou has used Sword Slash on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly counters Hikaru Shidou's Sword Slash, taking 2 Fatigue damage!  Hikaru Shidou is Psyched!  Mai Tokiha's Reverse ability activates!  Stagger and Stun applied to Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha's counterattack, Fall of Fall, fails to get through, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Hikaru Shidou!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to brace Garnet's Jawbreaker!, taking 25 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Garnet is Psyched!
<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

"Doesn't it? Now, I'm sure I have no idea what you're talking about." Mami smiles at Homura. It might be almost pleasant, if not for the spark in her eye, the stare at the other Puella Magi.

But there's the other concern at hand, too. Mimete's ranting might be interrupted, but Mami gets enough questions out of it, certainly. She stands amidst the chaos, gun still pointed, but not yet fired, shifting her aim along with the monster. But her attention is split, largely between the Daimon and its mistress, until...

The thanks are a surprise. "..."

"Yes, that's..." The storm doesn't come for her, and Mami watches Mimete leave in about as much confusion as moments ago, even if she barely shows it. Her eyes slide beside her, to Sailor Pluto--

But the woman she doesn't know doesn't seem to make a move... yet. But Homura does--others do. The monster is still at her rampage...

Mami makes a decision. ...This outing is already going to cost a lot more of her magical reserves than she'd wanted. So as Homura flips upward...

Mami aims her rifle away from the monster, and towards her rival. "Remember how well you handled the Jewel Seeds?" She lifts her other hand, and closes her fist. Six more rifles spiral in front of her, and a deafening roar marks their report, all firing on her at once.

"I do."

COMBAT: Mami Tomoe has used Tiro Circle on Homura Akemi.
COMBAT: Homura Akemi narrowly counters Mami Tomoe's Tiro Circle, taking 26 Fatigue damage!  Mami Tomoe is Psyched!  Homura Akemi's Reverse ability activates!  Homura Akemi's Tactician ability activates!
COMBAT: Homura Akemi's counterattack, Flashbang, fails to get through, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Mami Tomoe!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Moon [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

"Yeah!" Sailor Moon looks sidelong at Takeo who is there, agreeing with her. She crosses her arms and nods once, then double takes and looks straight at him, "Where'd you come from!?" Its not the most enlightened question though and she realizes that as a moment later, "Well I'm glad you're here, please help me save that girl!"

And not a moment later there's Mami. And she's... insulting Homura, by invoking her. That's pretty uncomfortable, dragging her in the middle like that. Sailor Moon puts a hand to the nape of her neck looking intensely awkward about that, "I-I don't know about that Mami-chan..." On the one hand she liked being admired. On the other hand she didn't like that admiration being used to insult people. But it's Mami Tomoe so maybe she's just taking it the wrong way. She doesn't know, at least it sounds sort of like innocent modesty there on her own end.

What happens next however... a shape drops from the trees, and it draws Sailor Moon's eyes. It's like the world moves in slow motion for her for just a few seconds, time's flow being especially kind to the Sailor Senshi. She sees flowing dark green hair frame the enigmatic magical girl's face, catches a glimpse of beautiful umber that was her skin, catches the mystery of her eyes behind the domino mask.

Sailor Moon feels heat in her cheeks, a flush coming to her face, and as Pluto touches down to the ground, wielding her rod adorned with garnet orb, she whispers aloud, "She's so pretty..." The word felt inadequate, like they were unable to describe a beauty that transcends time itself. "...I wonder who she is." And Sailor Moon feels the urge to massage her cheeks with her gloves, but she suppresses it. With Naru in danger her gaze has to snap back towards her.

And the way Mimete is talking, her fists clench and she shouts back, "NOT EVERYTHING IS ABOUT YOU!" But suddenly the Daimon is leaping at her, blades of leaves leading, Sailor Moon makes this high-pitched noise of distress, and quickly leaps to a sidelong branch, trying to put the tree trunk between her and the Daimon, "I'm not a branch! I don't need a trim! Get away from me!"

The Daimon's blade slices, and the Senshi ducks desperately beneath it, a few blonde hairs float, as leaves billow all around her. At the same moment, her foot lashes out at the trunk of the tree with a sharp crack against the bark, and she backflips off her perch. The upper half of the tree starts to bend under the strain before toppling onto the Daimon's position, likely only momentarily engulfing it.

Sailor Moon hits the ground in a roll, back up onto her knees in a flash, a hand at her forehead. With a touch, her sacred tiara moves into her hand, taking on the sparkling sheen of stardust and moonlight. "Moon Tiara-" Sailor Moon catches Homura darting in stays her hand for just a moment, waiting and then flings it expertly with a flick of her wrist, "-Action!"

It sails across the gap, intent on shearing radiantly thorugh the alien darkness, but...

Right now her eyes are on Homura, "Homura-chan! That's Naru's! Please give her her song back!" She'd be in even more of a panic, if she thought it was Naru's pure heart, but the Deathbuster had denied that it was. Maybe it's not quite so vital but right now it's her voice, it's her song, it belongs to her. And Mami... "W-Wait Mami-chan! There's no need to go that far! We can talk this t-" But that was drowned out by the deafening roar of gunfire. So loud that she has to put her hands to her ears.

COMBAT: Sailor Moon has used Moon Tiara Action on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Sailor Moon's Moon Tiara Action, taking 29 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
<Pose Tracker> Chitose Shiratori [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Chitose frowns at the woman controlling the monster and her harsh words for the other magical girls. "She really needs to calm down. She's not going to get anything done, being all angry like tha--" And then Mimete stomps off. "Oh." After a moment, she shrugs just a little bit. "Well, that's that, I suppose."

Chitose is then assaulted by a storm of leaves. Chitose hops and leaps in an attempt to escape them. While she manages to shake most of the leaves, some of them do actually manage to hit her other arm and explode! As that side of her body is thrown back, she adjusts her other arm and points her Device at the monster.

<Thunder Dove>

Stylized birds, made of light, rocket out of White Omen and glide gently towards the leaf-monster. And, like the leaves, they explode on contact. All's fair, right?

As she recovers from the leaves and her own attack, she glances and sees the green Wind Knight. She had seen her before in the past, sure. But what draws Chitose's attention is Fuu's knocked off glasses. Which unnerves the older girl, just a little bit, as she feels her own set of eyewear grow heavy. Chitose takes a moment to adjust her glasses, inwardly hoping that Fuu's weren't broken in the fight. That's a fate she wouldn't wish on anyone.

COMBAT: Chitose Shiratori has used Thunder Dove on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to dodge Chitose Shiratori's Thunder Dove, taking 26 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Pluto [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

A firestorm of leaves kicks up all around, peppering the newly-minted battlefield with small explosions, and the flames reflect in Pluto's red eyes. A familiar proclamation of moonlit punishment draws her attention, especially, and the Guardian feels a keen tug at her heart from the nearness of her future liege. It is not yet time to act, and so she can take a momentary luxury and appreciate the nearness, whatever complications and conflicts the coming times might hold. She shifts her grip on the Garnet Rod from a light-fingered grasp to a full-fisted clench as she watches.

The other magical girls do not escape her attention, though, and the acrobatics of a slender girl with long dark hair keep drawing her eye... And as the golden-curled Puella Magi nearby takes aim at Homura, Pluto's interest sharpens. There's nothing yet that she can put a finger to, but she has long since learned to trust her feelings at times like this. As the Key lies with Homura, too, the decision to follow her movements is an easy one.

COMBAT: Sailor Pluto has used Watched, the Clock Watches Back on Sailor Pluto.
COMBAT: Sailor Pluto accepts Sailor Pluto's Watched, the Clock Watches Back, taking 0 Fatigue damage!
<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

The key dangles, singing. The Daimon's mouth opens a little wider, a gluttonous look of glee on its face. There's a moment's pause, as Steven makes a bold announcement - another, as Lancelot's blade of lightning sears an orange shield - but with an alien smirk, it releases the key to fall down that gullet.

And then a hand bearing a strange shield darts in, faster than it should be, and snatches the prize away.

The fiend snarls in response, a leaf ready to pursue the daring Puella Magi - but then it's beset from all sides. Fiat Silver's ferocious whip is met with a golden leaf, one gleaming with a razor edge that screams against the weapon and sends sparks flying - but before it can press the advantage, an arrow flies with determined swiftness and faith to strike one leg. From another side, a sword is met with a similar golden leaf, and again the attack is cut short by a mighty gauntlet to the jaw.

Things get loud as Mami opens fire on Homura, roaring doves of thunder and lightning assaulting the monster from all sides, masking the approach of a brilliant tiara that shines brighter than the daylight. There's a pained screech as the disc slams home.

And then, with a sizzling sound, the spinning tiara grinds to a halt. For all the might thrown at the Daimon, it's only a little worse off for wear. It seems smug, briefly - and then challenge is screeched to the air. It's a mercy, perhaps, that the area is evacuating - as leaves swarm once more, and this time they're far more menacing. Some slice through the air, others burst into flame, and the storm of arboreal castoff is beginning to menace the area at large. Danger for one and all...

But a little extra measure for Homura Akemi, who is holding that key.

...distantly, nearly out of earshot, there's a sudden yell. "Don't forget that key - and I am too the star!~" ...she had a star on her outfit, didn't she?...

COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Bountiful Blaze on Sailor Moon.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Heaps Of Leaves on Sailor Pluto.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Homura Akemi.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Autumn Slasher on Steven Universe.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Autumn Slasher on Fuu Hououji.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Fall of Fall on Fiat Silver.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Fall of Fall on Hikaru Shidou.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Fall of Fall on Lancelot.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Autumn Slasher on Chitose Shiratori.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Heaps Of Leaves on Garnet.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Heaps Of Leaves on Mami Tomoe.
COMBAT: Mami Tomoe narrowly dodges Mai Tokiha's Heaps Of Leaves, taking 6 Fatigue damage!  Mami Tomoe's Fade ability activates!  Mami Tomoe's Flash ability activates!  Trap applied to Mami Tomoe!
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji fails to dodge Mai Tokiha's Autumn Slasher, taking 16 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Sailor Moon fails to dodge Mai Tokiha's Bountiful Blaze, taking 29 Fatigue damage!  Mai Tokiha is Psyched!  Cripple applied to Sailor Moon!
COMBAT: Fiat Silver fails to brace Mai Tokiha's Fall of Fall, taking 35 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Stun applied to Fiat Silver!
COMBAT: Steven Universe narrowly braces Mai Tokiha's Autumn Slasher, taking 8 Fatigue damage!  Steven Universe's Block ability activates!  Steven Universe's Parry ability activates!
COMBAT: Garnet fails to dodge Mai Tokiha's Heaps Of Leaves, taking 8 Fatigue damage!  Trap applied to Garnet!
COMBAT: Homura Akemi fails to counter Mai Tokiha's Crimson Beauty, taking 30 Fatigue damage!  Blind applied to Homura Akemi!
COMBAT: Homura Akemi's counterattack, Flashstep, interrupts, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Lancelot narrowly braces Mai Tokiha's Fall of Fall, taking 11 Fatigue damage!  Lancelot's Block ability activates!  Lancelot's Parry ability activates!  Stun applied to Lancelot!
COMBAT: Sailor Pluto narrowly braces Mai Tokiha's Heaps Of Leaves, taking 2 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Sailor Pluto's Block ability activates!  Sailor Pluto's Parry ability activates!  Trap applied to Sailor Pluto!
COMBAT: Chitose Shiratori narrowly dodges Mai Tokiha's Autumn Slasher, taking 10 Fatigue damage!  Chitose Shiratori's Fade ability activates!  Chitose Shiratori's Flash ability activates!
<Pose Tracker> Homura Akemi [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.

"I remember that you interfered, Tomoe," Homura snaps, angrily. She reaches into her shield; from it, she pulls a long cylindrical object out, and throws it underhanded. It explodes in a brilliant flash of light -- but too late for the firing circle that Mami made. She has to duck and bob, hand gripped around the key, as the shots pepper the street where she was. Then, one grazes her calf.

A line of red splashes down on the ground. Her eyes narrow, and she starts to bolt, hand gripped around the key. She hears Usagi call out -- then she shakes her head. "This isn't Naru Osaka's. Focus on the monster, Sailor Moon."

How she talks, calmly, over gunfire may be a mystery.

At this point, having Sailor Pluto's eyes on her goes practically unnoticed -- a mistake, she may come to decide. She has to worry about those leaves coming in. She grits her teeth, reaching her hand to her shield, and clicks it into places.

Time freezes and the key keeps singing in Naru's voice. Homura's eyebrow twitches in the grey, ordinarily silent space that only she has. She chances a frown down at the key, as she steps to the side of the leaves. "This did not need a soundtrack," she grumbles.

Then, she clicks the shield back into place. Time resumes -- and she feels the eyes on her again, the blow of the wind, and the realization she didn't step far enough to the side. She hisses, sharply, as the leaves slash into her side.

She starts to /run/, then.

COMBAT: ITEM ESCAPE ATTEMPT! Homura Akemi is attempting to escape with Naru's Singing Key! They must run for 2 more turns!
COMBAT: Hikaru Shidou narrowly braces Mai Tokiha's Fall of Fall, taking 11 Fatigue damage!  Hikaru Shidou's Block ability activates!  Hikaru Shidou's Parry ability activates!  Stun applied to Hikaru Shidou!
<Pose Tracker> Lancelot [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

"Oh no you don't!" Lancelot calls out as more of those deadly leaves are hurtled his way. This time Arondight flashes and the shining white blade emits sparks of lightning as they are parried and brushed aside. He narrows his eyes and watchs the goings on around him.

Turning to look at Pluto he raises an eyebrow. "Hey. Hi. Lancelot. Knight of the Round Table. Nicetameetcha." He nods. "Um. So. I appear to be kind of lost? Like. Why are they fighting over a singing key, which might be a Pure Heart, well. It's not a heart. It's a Key. I know that. A pure Key? The keyt to her heart?" He taps his chin. "I wonder if that's what I need to get fo - " He shakes his head. "No wait. Nevermind. Anyway. Um. Why are they all fihgting over the key instead of kicking this things butt?"

He holds up a finger. "Oh excuse me." His blade suddenly dances in his hands as he leaps toward the Daimon. "FURIOUS ASSAULT!" After the multitude of lighting quick and deadly attacks he back flips to land near Pluto once more. "Sorry. Anyway. Any ideas?"

COMBAT: Lancelot has used Furious Assault on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (5)] has posed.

Thankfully someone appears to snatch the key before it is swallowed. What is that key even for? Why is it singing? Why are people stealing metaphysical objects out of people for nefarious pruposes?! It makes no sense! Seriously, Steven needs to find someone educated on this and get caught up on Badguys - Japan Edition. Someone is even running away from the monster with it! "Yeah! Good job!" he shouts toward Homura. "Don't let it... wait."

Where is she going? THe person it was taken from is over there... Well, this got weird. Still, this monster thing needs to go! Someone else can handle it.

A flurry of razor sharp leaves blast in all directions. Steven leans forward on Lion and holds the shield in front of his face, blocking the brunt of attacks. Some managed to get through, and they are indeed razor sharp, drawing blood quickly. Thankfully nothing too series - this time.

"Go for the legs, Lion! I get left, you get right!" he says to his fluffy friend. Lion clsoes the distance, and at the last second, Steven jumps off, and Lion moves forward, both moving to collide with the legs of the monster. "So them what Lions can do!" he calls out to Lion. And he does what Lions do.

COMBAT: Steven Universe has used Just Lion Things on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to brace Lancelot's Furious Assault, taking 19 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly counters Steven Universe's Just Lion Things, taking 8 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Mai Tokiha's Reverse ability activates!  Tangle applied to Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha's counterattack, Rough Roughage, partially gets through, doing 9 Fatigue damage to Steven Universe!
<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

By now, the Wind Knight has indeed managed to retrieve her glasses. On the downside, they've gotten sap on them, somehow, possibly related to the leaves which the monster is attacking so many of them with. And speaking of those leaves, several of them appear to have VERY sharp edges when they're launched at her; the Wind Knight doesn't even see them coming in time to dodge, although she had her legs braced to try and dodge anyway. So she gets hit, THEN pushes off ...

And winds up flat on her face. This just isn't her day, is it?

She rolls over, getting back to her feet - and blinks. Didn't the youma have that key, why is the Puella Magi holding ... oh. Right. Everyone seems to want to grab one of those keys, don't they? The Magic Knight of Wind is certainly curious about it, but more importantly, she's fairly certain that the key - or what it represents - needs to be returned to the girl from whom it was extracted.

Definitely not a good day for her, and it shows as she gets back to her feet with a distinctly chagrined look. "I'm really sorry, but could you please *NOT* run off with that item?" she calls back. "We need to return it to the monster's victim, so I can't just let you take it wherever you intend to go!"

She's gathering mana for a spell even as she calls out to Homura; she can only hope the dark-haired magical girl will *listen*. At the very least, she needs to slow the other girl down ...

"Winds of Admonishment!"

Hopefully another binding whirlwind will prove effective towards that end and give the Wind Knight a chance to catch up with her. Once the spell is loosed, the green-clad Magic Knight does indeed begin sprinting.

COMBAT: Fuu Hououji has used Winds of Admonishment on Homura Akemi.
<Pose Tracker> Fiat Silver [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

Sailor Moon elaborates and Fiat Silver hears. (Well, Scorpion does. He's taking notes.) Naru. That's probably the other woman. She glances over for a moment as a woman in amber points a rifle at - wait a minute -

<Madame! There are CRIMINALS about!> Silver Scorpion says, sounding aghast.

Fiat Silver's lips thin to a line.

Then chaos reigns. A flash bomb goes off, a storm of leaves smash into her - and between the distractions and their sheer speed, Fiat Silver can't muster her defenses! Driven down to the ground, she actually /tumbles/ on it, crying out in momentary dismay.

"Grenadier Mode!" Fiat Silver says. <Engage!>

She points her baton forwards like an admonishing wand. She glances for a moment towards the fleeing purple-haired girl but she's apparently out of her line of sight. As she pushes herself to her feet with her free hand, she calls out - "Sailor Moon! Do you know why that woman had a key inside of her?!"


This moment of horrified dismay does not show thanks to her mask but it does give her a moment of hesitation in finishing her spell. She manages to remember it nonetheless, orienting the baton towards the Daimon. "Scorpio -- Seven!" <FIRING.>

What bursts out are no more or less than seven (of course) shards of high velocity sorcerous sapphires, ripping through the air in gorgeously sparkling hues of the color blue, contrasting perhaps with the oddly fiery colors of the falling trees, and also bursting into cool-hued light when they hit the youma and/or trees and stray objects. (In the latter case, it's just a colorful show. No problems here, folks!)

COMBAT: Fiat Silver has used Scorpio Seven on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Homura Akemi narrowly counters Fuu Hououji's Winds of Admonishment, taking 5 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Fuu Hououji is Psyched!  Homura Akemi's Reverse ability activates!  Homura Akemi's Tactician ability activates!  Cripple and Trap applied to Homura Akemi!
COMBAT: Homura Akemi's counterattack, Flashstep, interrupts, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Fuu Hououji!
<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

"Focus on the monster, Sailor Moon." Mami's voice is firm; she doesn't even look at the younger magical girl. No, the Puella Magi's attention now is on Homura Akemi. She makes no apology or explanation for involving Sailor Moon earlier, either. Instead...

Instead she darts her eyes to the Daimon, shifting suddenly in an effort to move out of the way of the swarm of leaves. But they cling to her, slow her down amidst the debris.

While her face is visible, she looks more irritated than anything.

"Excuses, /Akemi-chan/."

But Homura's gone, in the moments, and Mami only manages to track her by the movement of white and black and purple. Golden eyes narrow.

"You're not needed here. Why don't you just drop that and run along like a good girl? Go somewhere you'd be appreciated for who you really are."

There's a beat. Mami's almost lined up her shot... and her smile is as sharp as the sword of one of the knights still fighting the Daimon.

"But that's nowhere at all, isn't it?"

Mami shoots a golden bullet straight for Homura's leg, then another to the arm that holds the key, another, still advancing as she throws away rifles and conjures them in brilliant light just as quickly.

To Fuu and Sailor Moon between shots, "She won't listen."

COMBAT: Mami Tomoe has used Tiro Flourish on Homura Akemi.
COMBAT: Homura Akemi narrowly dodges Mami Tomoe's Tiro Flourish, taking 12 Fatigue damage!  Homura Akemi's Fade ability activates!  Homura Akemi's Flash ability activates!  Stagger applied to Homura Akemi!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Fiat Silver's Scorpio Seven, taking 13 Fatigue damage!
<Pose Tracker> Chitose Shiratori [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Chitose is admittedly not sure what's going on among her... well, 'allies' is such a strong word, Chitose does not know anyone on the field. But like the one with the key, Chitose wonders if maybe the monster with the leaves might be a higher priority?

Speaking of leaves, they swarm her yet again, though these don't explode, but instead start to dig and slash her clothing. So she jumps into the air again, taking flight. She actually does an alieron roll before she realizes something to help with the situation. "Ready to try something new?" She asks White Omen.

<Yes, but I would like to suggest caution. We do not want to hit the ground.>

"Okay, I'll... keep that in mind."

<Just watching out. Swift Stroke>

It's at this point that Chitose's aerial speed suddenly picks up. "Woah!" Chitose shouts as she goes faster than she expected, jetting forward with extreme motion.

<I did warn you.> White Omen says simply.

COMBAT: Chitose Shiratori has used Swift Stroke on Chitose Shiratori.
COMBAT: Chitose Shiratori accepts Chitose Shiratori's Swift Stroke, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Accelerate and Empower applied to Chitose Shiratori!
<Pose Tracker> Garnet [None] has posed.

Flurries of leaves are hard to dodge. Even knowing when they were directly arriving, dodging them was difficult, not having the knowledge of the speed and angle, Garnet's attempt to dodge the second bout of leaves headed at her was much less successful. She had no sooner landed from her punch, satisfied with the decisive feel of the connecting strike, when the leaves came at her, and this time, she did not escape their wreath.... er WRATH.

They slip through her attempts to evade them, and nick her with many small cuts, sticking on her, and overlapping on each other, causing them to feel heavy on her body. Garnet grits her teeth and fights against the leaves to help Steven and Lion with their attack on the monster's legs.

She pummels it with a blur of strikes that gleam brilliantly like light reflecting from gemstones!

COMBAT: Garnet has used Adamantine Barrage on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly counters Garnet's Adamantine Barrage, taking 19 Fatigue damage!  Mai Tokiha's Reverse ability activates!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha's counterattack, Fall of Fall, partially gets through, doing 7 Fatigue damage to Garnet!  Stun applied to Garnet!
<Pose Tracker> Hikaru Shidou [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Falling on the Fire Knight? Or something like that? Regardless, the Fire Knight gets knocked down again, but there's no keeping a good knight down. Even after she's been hurt, she still gets back up for another go. "You can hit me all you want! I'm not going down that easily!" She grips her sword and narrows her eyes. "Seems you have to be taught that lesson the hard way!"

The Fire Knight grips her sword tighter than ever, and this time she rushes in and almost dances around her opponent briefly before swinging her sword again. She intends to cut this one down to size literally!

COMBAT: Hikaru Shidou has used Sword Slash on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Hikaru Shidou's Sword Slash, taking 8 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Hikaru Shidou is Psyched!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Moon [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Her tiara grinds to a halt, and suddenly takes its place on the ground. The silence is almost deafening, until the thing screeches. And then leaves, leaves bursting with flame! Sailor Moon scrambles forwards, a blast of flame sending her flying and then sprawling forward. Her fuku takes on blackened spots, as wisps of smoke rise from her Fuku.

Grabbing her tiara quickly with her hand, she puts it back into place on her brow, as she begins to hop on one foot, realizing her boot is on fire. She slaps it quickly with her glove until its out. Then lets out a small shriek when she realizes the tip of one of her twintails is on fire as well. That she pats down fast, and lets out a sigh of relief when it goes out. She then calls out indignantly towards Mimete, "Lighting a co-star's hair on fire and running off the stage makes you just about the worst star ever!"

Homura denies that it's Naru Osaka's but... "It's singing in her voice! What do you mean it isn't hers!?" Fiat Silver asks and suddenly Sailor Moon puts up a finger like she's about to give some expert exposition and says, "Not a clue! But if she thinks I'm going to let her cover of the song get out into the world she has another thing coming! Letting that key get away is like getting it stuck in the cloud!"

Even Mami is telling her to focus on the monster, like telling a kid to sit in the corner, "But Mami-chan! Even if she won't listen there has to be a way to settle this without really hurting h-" Mami is shooting again! This is getting out of hand! The best solution she sees is getting that key away from Homura so Mami will stop SHOOTING HER. Sailor Moon takes a glimpse around the area and spies something. Then starts to race in that direction. She snatches something with a hand, then races around the side. She grabs something by the hand, then races along the edge. When Homura is cut off by the winds, flashing a few paces to the edge, she gets close enough to say, "Think fast!"

Her hand whips up, revealing a big black trashbag full of leaves that had been abandoned from picking up some of the piles. She throws it right up close at Homura's face, like she was hoping to distract her, leaves flying everywhere as the bag busts. And her gloved hand reaches out... reaches... towards the shining key.

COMBAT: ITEM GRAB! Sailor Moon has used Think Fast! on Homura Akemi.
COMBAT: Homura Akemi fails to dodge Sailor Moon's Think Fast!, taking 9 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Sailor Moon fails to grab an item from Homura Akemi!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Pluto [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Leaves fly in all directions, scattering and swirling with a flutter of yellow and orange and scarlet. It would be beautiful, truly, if they did not each carry the potent promise of danger. Sailor Pluto sees no path through the oncoming flurry, and so instead she sets her teeth and holds the Garnet Rod across her body. The onslaught batters her, leaving small dark bruises across her bare arms, but she withstands it and stands tall on the other side of the cloud of leaves, shaking her head to dislodge a final broad leaf from her face so she can see clearly again.

Ice shoots up her spine and she hears, in the distance, a great bell toll and halt mid-peal. The Garnet Rod chills in her grasp, instantly palpable even through her gloves.

Time stops.

This, she suddenly /knows/, is why she is here. The Key is important, yes, but cause of the disturbances, the source for the awful snarling tangle of threads that the modern day's weave of reality has become: THIS is it. This dark-haired magical girl with the unassuming looking shield has just violated the sanctity of Time, and she now has the full and undivided attention of its Guardian.

Within this grey frozen vignette Sailor Pluto moves freely, and faced with sudden purpose, she reaches for power. She holds the Garnet Rod upright, Orb directly between herself and Homura Akemi, to look through its crimson depths and through Time itself, seeking any glimpse or insight into this havoc-wreaker and her nature.

And into the grey she speaks, letting the very existence of her voice in this temporal vacuum fall loudly between notes of the Key's song to chase the magical girl as she flees. "You have transgressed against Time. Are you prepared to pay for what you've done?"

COMBAT: Sailor Pluto has used Golden Eternity Lens on Homura Akemi.
<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

The pressure on the Daimon is a little lighter as the brief storm of chaotic leaves clears. Homura might have escaped in the chaos - but with the key still singing, the Daimon's eyes quickly pick up on her planned route. For a moment, it's clear that U-Koyo should pursue...but the Daimon does have other concerns.

Lancelot, after a brief aside to chat with Pluto, unleashes a storm of sword slashes that leave bits of leaves drifting in the wind. Before the Daimon can retort, there's a lion pouncing - and so the lion is met with a mouthful of leaves that are far spikier than they should be. A storm of blasts erupts along the monster's back, courtesy of Fiat Silver - and as it turns, it's met with fist after fist from Garnet pummelling in spite of whatever armor those leaves provide. Plus a quick slash from Hikaru's corner, scraping along the edge of a would-be blade.

Irritations, annoyances, all. Four bold souls have closed into melee, and they are met in kind. Slashing leaf blades meet the swords of Hikaru and Lancelot, a hammering overhead strike seeks to put the harrying lion down for a moment, and Garnet's fists are faced with a crimson strike that explodes on impact - the fiery hues of those leaves for more than show.

As the smoke clears, the Daimon is on the move again, swarms of blazing leaves chasing after Fiat Silver as recompense. As Homura seems to be having a bad day...perhaps the Daimon can just dart in, get the key, and dart out so that little disagreement can continue.

COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Leaves Of The Daimon on Lancelot.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Leaves Of The Daimon on Hikaru Shidou.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Fall of Fall on Steven Universe.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Bountiful Blaze on Garnet.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Fiat Silver.
COMBAT: ITEM GRAB! Mai Tokiha has used Snack Reclamation on Homura Akemi.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Dance Of Golden Leaves on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha accepts Mai Tokiha's Dance Of Golden Leaves, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Surge applied to Mai Tokiha!  Cleanse! All of Mai Tokiha's debuffs are cleared!
COMBAT: Homura Akemi narrowly counters Mai Tokiha's Snack Reclamation, taking 2 Fatigue damage!  Homura Akemi's Reverse ability activates!  Homura Akemi's Tactician ability activates!
COMBAT: Homura Akemi's counterattack, Suspend Time, interrupts, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha successfully grabs an item from Homura Akemi!
COMBAT: Steven Universe fails to dodge Mai Tokiha's Fall of Fall, taking 26 Fatigue damage!  Stun applied to Steven Universe!
COMBAT: Homura Akemi accepts Sailor Pluto's Golden Eternity Lens, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Analysis performed by Sailor Pluto!  Stun applied to Homura Akemi!
COMBAT: Lancelot narrowly counters Mai Tokiha's Leaves Of The Daimon, taking 8 Fatigue damage!  Lancelot's Reverse ability activates!  Lancelot's Tactician ability activates!  Exhausted applied to Lancelot!
COMBAT: Lancelot's counterattack, Veil of Steel, interrupts, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Garnet narrowly counters Mai Tokiha's Bountiful Blaze, taking 21 Fatigue damage!  Mai Tokiha is Psyched!  Garnet's Tactician ability activates!  Cripple applied to Garnet!
COMBAT: Garnet's counterattack, The Unstoppable, partially gets through, doing 8 Fatigue damage to Mai Tokiha!
COMBAT: Fiat Silver narrowly dodges Mai Tokiha's Crimson Beauty, taking 21 Fatigue damage!  Fiat Silver's Fade ability activates!  Fiat Silver's Flash ability activates!
<Pose Tracker> Lancelot [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

And Pluto hops off. Not a word. Just off she goes to fight evil by daylight. Lancelot sighs and looks to the heavens. "One day. One day I'll be able to talk to girls. Like. At all." He then suddenly finds himself under attack.

He leaps back, Arondight flashing faster than what most eyes can follow. He lands ina crouch, his blade held low and to the side. His eyes snap up and he holds out a hand calling out, "LIGHTNING!" Sending a blast of blue and white bolds arcing toward his leafy foe.

COMBAT: Lancelot has used Lightning III on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly dodges Lancelot's Lightning III, taking 5 Fatigue damage!
<Pose Tracker> Homura Akemi [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.

"That isn't a concern!" Homura calls back to Fuu, gritting her teeth -- and then the winds whip around her, slowing Homura for a moment. She keeps running, but its slower and slower--it's

She has to duck, this time, when she hears those rifles firing. There isn't time to play with her shield again. The shots come flying, and Homura leaps -- bolting over a curb, as Mami's shots hit the sidewalk. Sparks fly where each of the shots hit, and she looks over her shoulder.

Her eyes narrow at Mami, for a moment. But then Sailor Moon's coming at her, swinging up a trashbag full of leaves -- and Homura kicks out at it, one heel slashing it open. Leaves go flying, and she feels Usagi's hand grab her wrist--

--and she quickly yanks away from Sailor Moon, though it's narrowly.

She realizes Fuu is gaining on her, too. She has to escape and so she slides the shield into place and with a click time stops once again. She is starting to run, when she realizes something. She catches it from the corner of her eye. Instinct dismisses it, until she realizes:

It's impossible. Movement.

She snaps her head to the left, hand gripped around the key so tight that her knuckles have whitened. The world is grey around her, and she steps back from Sailor Pluto, staring at her and the rod held in her hands. Her violet eyes become wide as saucers; her heel hits a can, and it gains light and color again, rolling a little away from her.

"What--how--" She stammers it out, halfway between crying and screaming. The look into the timestream for her is equally bewildering -- and equally frightening as the Puella Magi is frightened. There is a tangle in the timestream, all centered around this girl.

The shield clicks back into place and time resumes. As it does, Homura yells at Pluto, voice tinged with desperation. The cool act is gone: "What /are/ you!?"

Then the Daimon darts in. She body checks Homura, knocking her to the ground; she falls flat, and the key drops -- only to be snatched back up. Homura stares at Pluto, somewhere between utter shock and utter dismay.

COMBAT: Homura Akemi has used Timely Insight on Homura Akemi.
COMBAT: Homura Akemi accepts Homura Akemi's Timely Insight, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Homura Akemi is Quipped!  Analysis performed by Homura Akemi!
COMBAT: Homura Akemi has left Mai Tokiha's item contest. Please check it with +item Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Hikaru Shidou narrowly dodges Mai Tokiha's Leaves Of The Daimon, taking 7 Fatigue damage!
<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (5)] has posed.

Steven and Lion both go for the legs, and while temporarily successful, Lion recieves a nasty blast of sharp leaves with a hammerfirst gets repelled, crashing into Steven in the process, knocking both for a loop. "Poor Lion. Stay here for now! We got this!" The boy states; Lion is left to tend to the wounds on his face and chest for the moment.

As Steven shakes off the dizziness from the impact, the creature has chased down the one girl and reclaimed the key. "If it eats it, this will be much harder!" he says aloud. The boy begins to hustle as fast as his stout statue will allow to the fight. In the process, he notices another Sailor Scout! One he can fawn over later though.

Finally catching up to the group, Steven waits for an appropriate moment to come in hard, swinging his shield wildly in the process. He may not have cool things like a moonbeam or pwoerful wind, but he does have a large shield that hurts a whole heck of a lot when it connects!

COMBAT: Steven Universe has used Shield Bash on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to dodge Steven Universe's Shield Bash, taking 10 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Steven Universe is Psyched!
<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

"It absolutely *is* a concern, Akemi-san," the Wind Knight replies - presuming that the magical musket girl, the drill-tailed blonde, is using an accurate name for the dark-haired mystery girl. At least the Winds of Admonishment took hold -

And then the *youma* (Daimon, but she doesn't know that term yet) swoops in and steals the key back.

If the situation weren't already so dire, the Magic Knight of Wind would likely borrow a second or two in which to facepalm; instead, she resorts to swapping her bow for her sword, and trying to convert her momentum from a straight dash into a spin ...

The better to try and slash at the Daimon.

COMBAT: Fuu Hououji has used Spinning Slash on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Fuu Hououji's Spinning Slash, taking 7 Fatigue damage!
<Pose Tracker> Fiat Silver [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

The amber-haired girl - Mami-chan, Silver Scorpion observes, cutting off the 'chan' in his magical circuits while taking note of this - elaborates and seems to speak disfavorably of this "Akemi." That's not good.

Also not good: a fiery storm of leaves. "I understand," Fiat Silver tells Sailor Moon shortly before she snaps up into the sky, which probably at least takes the brunt off of that storm of burning leaves, redolent with the scent of the fading year and the promise of cold air and wintertime mysteries to come!

Also, well, fire.

Flying up like that draws the momentary attention of Miranda and Mr. Rucci, seated in a cafe on the third floor of a nearby building.

"She seems to be doing well," Miranda says warmly.

"I always wonder where you found her," Mr. Rucci says. He's sipping a cup of coffee he just poured from the coffee pot because the waiters had been startled into momentarily fleeing the area. That means he is stealing. As such, the black coffee is sweet as sin.

"Hm? Why, I stole her, of course," Miranda says, not looking away from the observation.

Fortunately, Fiat Silver is unaware she's being watched at the moment. After completing a loop, pushing past the scorched and sore feeling, pivoting her baton downwards - "Don't stand near it for a moment!" she shouts down for everyone's sake, and then declares, "Scorpio Tortoise!"

This does not shoot a scorpion riding a turtle at the Daimon. It does fire another glittering sphere of sapphire, this one more of an oblate spheroid than a real /ball/, which aims to smack down and land in the general neighborhood of where the daimon is standing, before erupting into sparkling sprays of magical force, twisting and rotating gorgeously /and hopefully setting its evil little legs on fire/. Or perhaps 'on explosions' is a more accurate, if less piquant, term.

COMBAT: Fiat Silver has used Scorpio Tortoise on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to dodge Fiat Silver's Scorpio Tortoise, taking 19 Fatigue damage!  Stagger applied to Mai Tokiha!
<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Mami is dismissive of anything coming at her for a moment--she's lining up her shots... And there's Sailor Moon, right into the fray. "What--"

She grits her teeth. She should've answered sooner, and now she does, snapping, "There /isn't/ a way! And your childish--" Mami stops herself, shaking her head, but she's angry. Angry, as her quarry slips furthe away, as the Daimon slips in, and she sees a glint of shining key...

Things just got a lot more complicated for Mami, and that's before she sees the mysterious woman suddenly standing there with Homura in a different place entirely. "...Who...?"

Mami takes off running. She can worry about that in a moment. In the meantime...

She fires another rifle, straight for their leaf-dressed opponent. "Fine. I'll cover you, Sailor Moon!"

Mami leaps into the air...

And lands gracefully right in front of the Daimon before her, already pointing another gun.

"End of the line."

COMBAT: Mami Tomoe has used Effortless Style on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha perfectly counters Mami Tomoe's Effortless Style, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Counter!  Mai Tokiha's Reverse ability activates!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha's counterattack, Crimson Beauty, fails to get through, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Mami Tomoe!
<Pose Tracker> Chitose Shiratori [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Chitose is out of the firing line for the moment... and still watches as the people who are not the monster try to beat each other up. "Really..." And then Chitose, veteran of at least two key fights already, decides to be a Good Samatarian about it. "Hello!" She calls out. "The key does not need to be returned for the girl to be returned to good health! It can go elsewhere!" She then mutters to herself, a wrist on her hip. "Geez, it's like they've never fought monsters before." She mutters to herself.

White Omen also calls down, helpfully. <Don't ask how we know that!>

With that does, she sweeps White Omen in front of her again, and again she fires. <Starling shot>

With Chitose in the air already, hopefully it doesn't have to go too far to get above the monster, when it spins twice and then splits into smaller streaks of light that fall upon the ground, and hopefully the monster in on the ground.

COMBAT: Chitose Shiratori has used Starling Shot on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Chitose Shiratori's Starling Shot, taking 28 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
<Pose Tracker> Hikaru Shidou [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Trying to avoid being hit doesn't work for the Magic Knight of Fire either. Instead, she still gets hit. But she refuses to go down still. Once again she's back on her feet, albeit bruised and battered somewhat. "I'm just warming up! And so are you!" She snaps her fingers and her sword becomes engulfed in a magical flame. "I'm going to burn you big time!" She rushes in and attempts to drive the flaming blade into her opponent.

COMBAT: Hikaru Shidou has used You're Fired on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Garnet [None] has posed.

And suddenly, Garnet's world is engulfed in fire as a holocaust of burning leaves explodes against her.

Weighted down by the leaves that hit her before, and her balance shaken to prevent a firm foothold, with a scream of pain and determination, she punches through the flames towards the demon!!!

Her hit connects! But not as strongly as she hoped, the flames and leaves robbed her of much of the force of her attack. She is visibily blackened, and immensely pained, though perhaps not burned in the way organic flesh might be.

She does her best to withdraw from immediate melee range to reassess and recover as best she can, firing off a large globe of electricty at the demon, as much for distraction as for its power to damage.

COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Hikaru Shidou's You're Fired, taking 2 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Garnet has used Adamantine Spark on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly dodges Garnet's Adamantine Spark, taking 9 Fatigue damage!  Diversion applied to Mai Tokiha!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Moon [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Homura yanks her wrist away, and Sailor Moon just misses clenching her fingers down on the shining key. "No! This won't stop until-" Homura vanishes, then reappears. Sailor Moon finds herself looking at her in confusion. There's something wrong here and she doesn't know what to make of it.

That mysteriously gorgeous magical girl over there didn't do /anything/ that she can tell, but Homura is yelling at her with a desperation that sounds like she's about to cry. "What... Homura-chan she didn't..." She looks over at the woman, trying to catch a glimpse of the eyes within her domino mask. "...do anything..."

But she'd never seen Homura crack like that, the terror was so real. And even she doubts that. She asks her directly a moment later, "You didn't... right?" She's catches a blur of movement and, "Watch out!" She warns, but Homura is body checked away, and the Daimon has swallowed the key. "Oh crap!"

Mami had been calling her childish earlier, and maybe that was so. There was a sort of childishness about wanting to resolve something without anyone getting hurt. But it was a part of her that she didn't want to shed. And now she says she's covering her? She takes a breath, then nods once as she swallows something. Perhaps what little pride she has, "Right. Let's end this Mami-chan." It's what she wanted after all? Isn't it?

Into her hands appears a pink rod, which she spins around in a flourish as she makes one full turn. She stops with it just parallel to the Crystal Star over her heart. In the center of it, the Ginzuishou gleams in a pinwheel of radiance, the barest glimmer of its true might "Moon Sparkling-"

She points the rod forward at the U-Koyo, "-Sensation!" Just over her heart, ribbons of light that alternate incandescent pink and silver stream towards the Daimon, showering it with light.

COMBAT: Sailor Moon has used Moon Sparkling Sensation on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Sailor Moon's Moon Sparkling Sensation, taking 16 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Pluto [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

The deep gleam of the Garnet Orb paints Homura in shades of red as Pluto looks through it, and then silver filaments shimmer into view and it is the bemasked Outer Senshi's turn to be shocked. Even in the more complex situations she has encountered over her long, long life, Sailor Pluto has never seen anything even approaching the glowing snarl that knots about Homura Akemi. Strands of temporal energy cobweb off her, twisting together and skating off at crazy angles. The girl glows with the cast-off luminence of uncountable, tortured threads of time.

It is one of the uglier things Sailor Pluto has ever seen, though not the ugliest, and she shivers bodily. She cannot yet decipher the implications, but knows they are phenomenal.

The time criminal wants to know what she is. Well, then.

"I am to be your reckoning." Sailor Pluto spins the Garnet Rod, end over end, and then plants its base in the ground before her. "Have you any understanding of what you've wrought?"

She shakes her head, once, and then raises the Rod between them. There is nothing friendly in the gesture, no mercy, just a sense of an implacable force that has leveled its attention squarely on the Puella Magi. Sailor Pluto gives the battle raging around her no mind. "Tell me what you've done, interloper. Perhaps what is tangled can yet be made clear, and correct, again."

<Pose Tracker> Homura Akemi [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.

"What--what I've done!?" Homura yells back at Pluto, crawling backward. She hasn't even thought to stand back up yet. She watches the Garnet Rod spins, and for a moment, she isn't a Puella Magi. She is terrified beyond all reasoning -- terrified to the point that Usagi's words and Mami's presence are dem echoes -- and she wonders if Pluto will kill her on the spot, before she remembers herself.

She doesn't have to answer this. She stands up, slowly, her hand shaking over her shield. Her voice catches in her throat, and hangs there for a moment.

She has to will herself to speak.

"What do you know of what I've done? And why should I tell you anything?" Her eyes narrow. "I've done everything myself. I had to. Who..." The fierceness in her voice dies. The fear bleeds back into it. "...who are you?"

<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Once the Daimon has the key firmly in its grip, the tone of events changes abruptly. Lightning bolts rain down on its position forcing it to start to run, key cheerfully singing accompaniment. A tragedy, perhaps, that Naru-chan had not chosen Benny Hill - but C'est La Vie...

But wherever the Daimon might run, key in its grip, opposition arises at every turn. Steven intercepts one path, clocking it in the head with his shield - and sending it staggering into the flashing sword of Fuu. Explosions rain down moments later, and when the crimson foe emerges, there might be a few flames amid the properly-coloured leaves.

And it's still not over. More streaks of light rain down, pummelling with decisive force - even as Chitose seeks to undermine the urgency of the crisis. A flaming blade from the left, a blast of lightning from the right - the Daimon stands its ground, and lets out a Mimete-like screech of frustration.

It doesn't speak. But its very stance screams 'ENOUGH'. Mami Tomoe, nearly an ally before, makes a grand entrance - which is immediately ruined by a storm of exploding leaves drowning out her words. Sailor Moon, heart filled with determination, unleashes a shower of holy light upon the monster - and with sheer ferocity, it cleaves a path through the purification. It screeches louder, and shines with a dreadful crimson light...before it -moves-.

Sailor Moon, Mami Tomoe, and Fuu Hououji are gathered close enough for the monster's purposes - it streaks between them, unleashing that light - and horrible, rending, blazing leaves - in a grand storm. The aftermath of the storm scatters out further, to hone in on those who escaped the immediate power...but when the light clears, the Daimon looks truly worn down for the first time.

C'est la vie, the key continues to sing.

COMBAT: FINISHER! Mai Tokiha has used Arboreal Tragedy on Mami Tomoe.
COMBAT: FINISHER! Mai Tokiha has used Arboreal Tragedy on Sailor Moon.
COMBAT: FINISHER! Mai Tokiha has used Arboreal Tragedy on Fuu Hououji.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Lancelot.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Fiat Silver.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Garnet.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Hikaru Shidou.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Chitose Shiratori.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Crimson Beauty on Steven Universe.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha has used Dance Of Golden Leaves on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha accepts Mai Tokiha's Dance Of Golden Leaves, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Surge applied to Mai Tokiha!  Cleanse! All of Mai Tokiha's debuffs are cleared!
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji fails to dodge Mai Tokiha's Finisher, Arboreal Tragedy, taking 61 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Sailor Moon narrowly braces Mai Tokiha's Finisher, Arboreal Tragedy, taking 27 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Hikaru Shidou fails to dodge Mai Tokiha's Crimson Beauty, taking 34 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Chitose Shiratori fails to dodge Mai Tokiha's Crimson Beauty, taking 30 Fatigue damage!  Blind applied to Chitose Shiratori!
COMBAT: Fiat Silver fails to brace Mai Tokiha's Crimson Beauty, taking 30 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Garnet narrowly dodges Mai Tokiha's Crimson Beauty, taking 22 Fatigue damage!  Garnet's Fade ability activates!  Garnet's Flash ability activates!  Blind applied to Garnet!
COMBAT: Mami Tomoe narrowly braces Mai Tokiha's Finisher, Arboreal Tragedy, taking 25 Fatigue damage!
<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Light and leaves blast the Magic Knight of Wind, and she's not sure that there isn't a very strong aspect of fire in that onslaught, but it's painful enough that she doesn't really need to know for sure whether it ignited her clothes or not. She just rolls over a few times when she lands, from what was meant to be a leap away from the attack but wound up being more 'getting thrown by the impact' than anything else.

She doesn't stay down, though. She has to push herself back to her feet with both hands and some careful balancing, and her equilibrium is shot sufficiently that her sword disappears as well. She needs to attack, but she can tell she's too drained to rev up the Emerald Cyclone to any useful effect.

She does the next best thing, lurching towards the Daimon and trying to relieve it of the key. Once THAT is done (or she fails in the attempt), she can ....

Hm. Collapsing to the ground and letting everyone else's attacks pass over doesn't sound like a bad idea, actually. But given how big some attacks can be, and that not everyone is content to attack from a distance, she'd probably better keep going as far as her legs will actually carry her.

COMBAT: ITEM GRAB! Fuu Hououji has used Sorry But I Need That on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to dodge Fuu Hououji's Sorry But I Need That, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji fails to grab an item from Mai Tokiha!
<Pose Tracker> Lancelot [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Lancelot is about to unload a full power attack on the Daimon when out of the corner of his eyes he sees something red glint. He looks over hsi shoulder and his eyes widen before they narrow. "NO!" He snarls and whirls before leaping at the pair of Sailor Pluto and Homura Akemi. His blade suddenly flairs with all the power he was ready to throw at the Daimon.

He lands between Pluto and Homura his cloak spread out as he crouchs and slams Arondight into the ground. There is a blinding flash of light as electricty arcs and thunder roars from the razor sharp edges of Evil's Bane. His gaze is lowered as he begins to speak. Low and fierce, his voice accented by the crackling energy of a lightning storm that arcs off hsi armor. "No." Is his first word. "We are all good people. We all fight the monsters." He looks up and his eyes have gone completely blue, crackling wiht untapped and furiously dangerous power. "We do not become the monsters."

He rises slowly, his hair wavers slightly in some breeze, but he does not yet draw Arondight from the earth. Instead he allows the energy to be grounded for now. "I don't know who you are, but I am a Knight of the Round Table. I defend the innocent from MONSTERS." His voice goes very. Very. Quiet, before he locks those newly blue and dangerous eyes on Pluto's. "Are you becoming a Monster?"

COMBAT: Lancelot fails to dodge Mai Tokiha's Crimson Beauty, taking 36 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Blind applied to Lancelot!
COMBAT: Lancelot has used Evil's Bane says SIT on Sailor Pluto.
<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Mami's seen Homura vulnerable before. She's seen her angry, emotional...

But something about Sailor Pluto makes her uneasy. ...Makes her feel like they're dealing with something grander than she is. But if she stops now...

She can't. "Right. We'll end it here."

Mami sets her golden eyes on U-Koyo, still aiming her weapon. She'd prepared to simply fire it in response to anything the Daimon had said, and yet--

Its screech is all the warning Mami gets, and she throws her arms up before herself, the storm slamming through her. In any sane battle, she'd have preferred to tryto get out of its way, preferred to do anything else--

The leaves singe and rend at her skin, but Mami Tomoe has been careful thus far. She's still standing when the brilliant light clears, still looking dead at the creature. ...And the key keeps singing. Mami looks over her arms at U-Koyo, and puts on a smile. "Light, hm?"

"Allow me."

Mami bends at the knee, and flips upward, her hat pin catching the light as she twirls mid-air, gracefully extending a single hand. She smiles, and this time, it's actually pleasant--she draws in a breath, feels the air. "TIRO....!"

She flicks her wrist, and a ribbon stretches out from her sleeve, spiraling before her and growing, a gigantic, blunt pistol appearing between her and U-Koyo, silvery and shining, embellished with gold, beautiful panels for a grip. The mechanism is bound to the ribbon still in her hand.

It's almost like a dance, to the music. But she pulls the cord effortlessly in time. "FINALE!"

A brilliant column of golden light twice as tall as Mami herself bursts out, the entire structure rippling backward with its sheer force.

It strikes the ground at an angle, looking to overwhelm her foe in one shot, as Mami herself spins in the air, sailing down towards the ground with a practiced ease.

She's fighting the monsters.

COMBAT: FINISHER! Mami Tomoe has used Tiro Finale on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Steven Universe fails to brace Mai Tokiha's Crimson Beauty, taking 29 Fatigue damage!  Blind applied to Steven Universe!
<Pose Tracker> Hikaru Shidou [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

This time, the Fire Knight moves out of the way in the nick of time... barely. She still gets caught and seems a bit stunned, before starting to show that she's truly getting worn out. But when the Fire Knight is running out of steam, her big guns come out... or her big swords if you will. She grips her sword with both hands and raises it to the sky. "I will show you what happens when you make me angry! I will burn you for real!" This time, a huge sword seems to form from the magical flames she seems to be calling forth. "I will strike you down!"

The sword literally mirrors the Fire Knight's sword as she directs it towards the monster. "The flames shall burn you!" She slashes it at her opponent.

COMBAT: FINISHER! Hikaru Shidou has used Sword of Flame on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Moon [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ON3_qBiMs9o

U-koyo seems frustrated. Therein lies the danger, but Sailor Moon doesn't have enough time to bid a hasty retreat before its on her.

A storm of leaves takes her head on. They rend, they shear, they cut away at her Fuku. The wind causes her twintails to stream backwards then sideways within the storm of them. For a while it feels like she's going to be swept up within it, the heels of her boots feeling like they're starting to lift off the ground.

With each cut, she bites back each urge to shriek, just attempting to stay upright, one hand waving her rod desperately to bat away what leaves she could. But for every razor leaf she successfully strikes away, there are four more getting through.

Once its assault is finished, she takes a knee, her eyes closed, its taking all she has just to breathe. But then her eyes open.

There's something in her eyes which say the same thing. Communicate the same feeling. That of 'Enough'. It's the frustration of this situation, of watching Magical Girls fight each other. It's the frustration of seeing her friend get hurt. It's the frustration of being dismissed, condescended, and belittled. It's the more petty frustration of having a fun day at the park interrupted by some supremely selfish witch.

She gets up on wobbly legs, and brings the rod above her head, as it begins to chime musically. It heralds what is to come, like the watchful eye in the night sky had come early. With a stylish flourish, she spins the rod side to side, then turns around once with an almost balletic style. The passion of which is can only be part of the magic she's weaving. When she stops, she takes a wide stance, holding the rod like some drum major's baton. "Moon Princess-" She points it straight at U-Koyo, the last word shouted with all that she can muster, "-HALAAATIOOONNNN!"

From it comes a kaleidoscope of pink light that spirals outwards from the tip. It looks she's woven a galaxy's worth of stars, and is giving the creature a trip through it, rapidly spinning through all the wonders of the heavens. Effigies of stars and moons and nebulas and other mysteries besides as manifestations of her radiance. Further and further it goes, all merging together until the definition of darkness fades and all changes to... brilliant white.

COMBAT: FINISHER! Sailor Moon has used Moon Princess Halation on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Fiat Silver [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

Fiat Silver blasts through another barrage of burning leaves as she ends up crouched on the ground again. Pain washes through her, hot then cold and then something in between, a dull aching underneath her Barrier Jacket's enchantment, a stinging sensation on her relatively exposed lips.

She makes herself stay standing up.

"Creature!!" she calls out, voice amplified gently by magic. She doesn't see where Lancelot goes. Her free hand rests on her hip.

"As a professional thief, I must speak poorly of your efforts. You haven't just stolen a key's song from an innocent young woman. You haven't even just stolen her hopes and her dreams. You've stolen peace - safety - the enjoyment of the changing of the seasons from all the people of this park. I was merely passing by on my way to avail myself of the beauty of this world, but now, for the honor of my profession --"

The baton in her armored gauntlet sweeps round to orient towards U-Koyo. "I am afraid I cannot tolerate this any longer."

<Capacitor is fully charged. 120%, in fact,> Silver Scorpion reports loyally.

"Then begin the bombardment. Scorpio--"

UP IN THAT CAFE, Mr. Rucci tilts his head. "Is she... giving the monster a speech?"

"It's a local trend," Miranda says warmly, biting into the tip of a tubular cookie and letting the rest dangle from her lips.

"I never thought you'd raised a dramaturge."

"She gets it from her mother," Miranda says.


"Seventy Seven!!"

U-Koyo probably remembers what happened earlier with a 'Scorpio Seven.' It would be silly to say that this attack is merely that strike turned up "to eleven," for the barrage is furious in intensity, the jewels shining with a passionate urgency, treasures of memory and light on their way to complete their mission, curving round as they do, gently striking their way to burst with resplendent refractory light against the Daimon! Let it perish in a coruscant burst! the singing jewels seem to say.

Fiat Silver turns her head back to look down her nose at the Youma. At this point it's mostly a matter of holding the weapon, putting your heart into it, and - perhaps most importantly - pointing it towards the enemy.

COMBAT: FINISHER! Fiat Silver has used Scorpio 77 on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to brace Mami Tomoe's Finisher, Tiro Finale, taking 192 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Hikaru Shidou's Finisher, Sword of Flame, taking 31 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Sailor Moon's Finisher, Moon Princess Halation, taking 64 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to brace Fiat Silver's Finisher, Scorpio 77, taking 62 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
COMBAT: Sailor Pluto narrowly dodges Lancelot's Evil's Bane says SIT, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Sailor Pluto is Quipped!
<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (5)] has posed.

Steven manages to get in a good hit in his flurry of blows, as others close in. It seems to be surrounded on all sides, though disperses everyone away with a blast of deadly leaves. Steven attempts to block it, but they come from all sides, not helping the situation. He takes a large number of good hits, and drops to one knee.

The creature moves, leaving him behind, but the boy refuses to fall. At least yet. Lion manages to show up at the right time, at least to give the boy something to stand with. "We... have to stop it, Lion... Help me!"

Lion helps the boy to his feet, and Steven grabs his shield, holding it close. "I hope I can do this as good as you once did..." Despite being blurry-visioned and dizzy, the boy makes it worse by spinning in place rapidly. All at once, the shield flies out of the spinning boy's hands at incredible speed, hurled toward what he hopes is the creature.

"Please hit..." Steven says, as he falls to the ground, disoriented as all getout at this point. He just needs to close his eyes for a bit. Let everything settle down...

COMBAT: FINISHER! Steven Universe has used Throw Shield on Mai Tokiha.

<Pose Tracker> Garnet [None] has posed.

Seeing the Demon begin to weaken, Garnet fights through the pain, even as a second burst of fire strikes her, as agonizingly painful as the first. She screams in pain, and begins to channel that pain, and her anger into electricity! She pushes every last ounce of magical might, and unleashes her fury! She shoots out another electrical orb like her last attack, then another, then another! They come out in a torrent, one after another in a stream of gigantic neon colored ball lightning that crashes into the Demon!

COMBAT: FINISHER! Garnet has used Cool Electro on Mai Tokiha.
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha narrowly braces Garnet's Finisher, Cool Electro, taking 31 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to brace Steven Universe's Finisher, Throw Shield, taking 73 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
<Pose Tracker> Chitose Shiratori [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Chitose continues flying for a moment... just in time to get swarmed by leaves. Despite her speed and agility, though, she gets swarmed by a /lot/ of leaves, which cut into her with firey passion. In fact the torrent is enough to cause her to fall from the air, which means Chitose hits the ground pretty quickly, landing on her back. She lets out a yelp of pain and takes a few seconds to catch her breath, before she uses her free arm to prop herself up and free the other arm to point White Omen at the monster. Through pain and grim determination, Chitose only mutters one word. "Fire."

<White Ark>

A brillant lance of white light is fired from the device, hopefully not just hitting the monster, but piercing /right through it/. At least, that's what Chitose wants, really.

COMBAT: FINISHER! Chitose Shiratori has used White Ark on Mai Tokiha.
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Pluto [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Not for the first time and certainly not for the last, Pluto allows herself a pang of sadness; the girl's terror touches her, despite the magnitude of her crimes. It is genuine. Perhaps she truly does not understand the trouble she's created.

But Time is bigger than any one person, Pluto knows. And Homura's defiance decides her. The Garnet Orb in its shining mount atop the Rod begins to glow, gathering energy to itself at Pluto's mental command. She raises it above her head, and a handful of delicate-looking keys looped about her waist rattle and rise as if magnetically drawn toward the Orb. "I am the Guardian of Time, and you have--"

A crackling flash of lightning interposes itself between them and when Pluto's vision clears from it, a knight in full armor stands there, nearly blocking her view of the slight Homura on the other side. Pluto's eyes narrow, and she takes a half-step back, having been so focused on the horrorshow that is Homura's entanglement with Time that Lancelot is able to accomplish the extremely unusual: he catches Sailor Pluto by surprise.

"I am no monster, but neither is that girl innocent. There are things in this world more important than the outcome of a single battle, or of a single life." There is a grim set to her mouth as she confronts Lancelot. "And I do not answer to you, Sir Knight. Stand aside!"

She advances, the Garnet Rod a blur in her hands as she spins it, but at the last moment she herself launches into a low spin and aims a sweeping kick at Lancelot's side, hoping to knock him off balance and away so that she can get past him to Homura.

COMBAT: Mai Tokiha fails to brace Chitose Shiratori's Finisher, White Ark, taking 87 Fatigue damage!  Mai Tokiha is unable to keep fighting!
COMBAT: Sailor Pluto has used Sailor Pluto Kick on Lancelot.
COMBAT: Lancelot fails to dodge Sailor Pluto's Sailor Pluto Kick, taking 21 Fatigue damage!  Lancelot is unable to keep fighting!  Sailor Pluto is Psyched!
<Pose Tracker> Mai Tokiha [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

The Daimon is worn down. But even as its leaves fray, it is far from helpless. Fuu lunges for the key, but in spite of a brief struggle the leafy monster holds on...and then Fuu runs. For a moment, U-Koyo is puzzled as to why.

Then the 'why' is made abundantly clear. There's a roar like thunder, a roar like the crashing of the ocean, and golden light smashes down on the monster with enough force to crack the earth. A final shot to bring the monster to an end...but when the smoke clears, it still stands.

It's pained, and the happy incessant singing of that key seems to pain it all the more. It struggles against cheer, briefly meeting Hikaru's sword with a sword of leaves - which is utterly incinerated by her anger. Another defense lost - just before it is engulfed in brilliant white.

There's a screech, like some pained bird - but as the light fades, it still stands. Seventy-seven jewels blaze forth to hammer it from all sides, blast after blast of ball lightning follows suit, and finally it's struck from two angles at once - a shield slamming into its head as a lance of light pierces it through.

It still stands. But...after all that, it does not move. The key sings the refrain once more...and then with a hiss, with a burble, with a sound of resignation, the Daimon collapses into a heap of lifeless leaves. The key falls, bounces once, rolls through the leaves...and then comes to a rest right next to Fuu's hand.

And distantly, the Daimon is mourned by absolutely no one, as Mimete is busy talking the ear off a train conductor who wanted to punch a ticket, not hear a ten minute rant about this girl's coworkers.

<Pose Tracker> Lancelot [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

"I won't allow you to harm anyone. Not while I still stand!" Lancelot says in defience to Pluto. "We're on the same side! All of us! I've seen all of them fight evil." He Rips Arondight out of the ground and prepares to take on Pluto, but the Senshi has a few more years experience on him.

The sweep is beautifully executed and the resulting fall has Lancelot crack his head on a rock. The lightning arcing around him flairs in brilliant, and blinding light. Releasing up into the sky to illuminate the clouds in a reverse lightning storm. The blue in his eyes dims then fades.

Lancelot is replaced by Takeo as he lays there blinking up at the fading light of the lightning storm he jsut unleashed into the heavens. He grimaces and winces, putting a hand to the back of his head, and isn't totally surprised to find a cut there. But he crouches, looking up at Pluto, barely able to focus. "Won't. Letcha. Hurt. her." He stands up to throw a wonderfully executed forward punch, but ends up looking like John Wayne before he falls flat on his face at Pluto's feet. He groans slightly and tries to push himself up, eyes closed and fist burried in the ground.

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

The Wind Knight blinks a couple of times as the key - the singing key that everyone has been scuffling with each other and the monster over - is finally relinquished, by dint of the monster's obliteration. And it lands within *fairly* easy reach of the green-clad Magic Knight.

She reaches for it, with an effort, then works on getting back to her feet - with more of an effort, and a helping hand from the Fire Knight for good measure ... and she looks around. "Where's the girl this key was taken from ... we need to return it to her, don't we?"

If her head would just stop spinning, maybe she could sort out which direction she needs to go in to do that. For now, the Wind Knight picks a direction and starts walking - back into the park, rather than trying to get 'away' per se.

<Pose Tracker> Hikaru Shidou [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

The Wind Knight won't have to walk back alone. The Fire Knight runs over to help shoulder her. "Let's get out of here," She says gently to her colleague. "This was a tough battle, but we made it through in one piece! That's the power of teamwork!"

<Pose Tracker> Homura Akemi [Ohtori Academy (9)] has posed.

Homura didn't ever expect Lancelot to leap between herself and Pluto. She stares at the knight's back -- taking a few cautious steps backward, uncertainly. It's so far from her expectations that she doesn't know what to think. After all... she isn't the person who needs rescuing, as a rule. Resentment and gratitude clash within her.

But then she sees Sailor Pluto advance, Garnet Rod spinning, and deliver a kick for Lancelot's side. Her eyes narrow, then. The Guardian of Time...

She grits her teeth together, looking down. This is a complication that she can scarcely afford. This is a problem that she can't manage. She looks down at Lancelot, as he crouches after that kick.

Homura isn't proud of it, but she turns -- and she starts running as fast as she can. Unlike every other escape that she has made, she doesn't have the luxury of time travel for this one.

<Pose Tracker> Fiat Silver [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

"I'm not on your team," Fiat Silver says, reflexively. She doesn't seem eager to zip off right away, though the reasons are unclear. Mostly because of her slick outfit hiding most of the places where 'scorch marks' or 'fatigue sweat' would be visible.

She crouches down a bit to breathe heavily even so, her head turning up to observe matters for a moment. Her baton is still in her hand but not really pointed 'at' anything.

<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

'There are things in this world...'

Even as she sails back to the ground, Mami's eyes widen slightly. The words she hears... She alights, landing lightly, and watches as the Daimon lives through her attack... But not for very long. The key glints as it moves, and Mami watches as the leaves collapse, to be sure that it does so. ...It's only after that...

She glances back to Sailor Pluto and Homura, and Takeo arguing, once, but shakes her head. She has her own matter to attend.

Mami stands in place as Fuu starts to walk away.


Her voice is calm, but firm. Mami regards Fuu dispassionately, continuing, "...Do you know how to put it back? Even if you do, who's going to protect her when they come for it again? That's not the first of those 'keys' we've seen. And not even the second monster to make an attempt on one."

"I, unlike her--unlike you--can protect it."

Homura's fleeing. ...Mami tells herself that that's irrelevant.

"I can do what none of you can. Give me the key."

COMBAT: Mami Tomoe has used That's a Threat on Mami Tomoe.
COMBAT: Mami Tomoe accepts Mami Tomoe's That's a Threat, taking 0 Fatigue damage!
<Pose Tracker> Chitose Shiratori [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Chitose smiles as the monster explodes.

What? It doesn't explode? Well that's what Chitose sees, a number of explosions before the monster vanishes. It's what she'd like to see, anyway, deep in the recesses of Chitose's mind. It's even complete with mental imagery and everything like that.

When that's done, she slowly climbs her way back up, with her lungs pumping to keep oxygen flowing through her body. She stops, though, when she hears Fuu say they should put the key back, despite Chitose's comments that it was completely unnecessary, at least according to the last two keys.

"Augh, fine, whatever." Chitose throws her hands in the air. "That poor girl." She says. Chitose doesn't specify if she's pitying the comatose girl or the girl who might be comatose in short order. She looks down at her Device. "Let's go home." She turns and start walking away, her path taking her behind a stall. She uses the stall to mask her transformation back into normal clothing. She places her Device back in her hair, adjusts her glasses, and takes a few steps--

<Wait.> Or not. Chitose stops and presses herself against the back of the stall and waits, listening to whatever might go on in the next few moments.

COMBAT: Chitose Shiratori transforms into Chitose Shiratori!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Pluto [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

The electric fireworks of Lancelot's toppling spark and pop around Pluto, and she squeezes her eyes tight against the blue-white flare of light with only partial success -- her vision blurs and burns, and she has to blink for long seconds before the regaining it. It is to Homura Akemi's unknowing benefit, for even without her usual access to an unimpeachably time-secured escape route, she outpaces Sailor Pluto's recovery. All that the Guardian of Time catches of her is a glimpse of her black stocking-clad legs as she flees out of reach. For now.

But Sailor Pluto knows her, now. She has seen her, both with her own eyes and through the eternal lens of the Garnet Orb. Their paths will cross again, and next time Pluto will be ready.

Until then... she looks down at the fallen knight and shakes her head, knowing that she did what she had to do. She feels a pang of regret, but none of it shows on her impassive face.

There was another reason she'd come to Asakusa. With Homura gone, Pluto allows herself to refocus on the rest of her surroundings, looking for the Key... Ah, there it is, in the hands of a green-clad warrior girl whose movements suggest she's taken more than her fair share of a beating in the fight. And the same blonde Puella Magi who'd been attacking Homura is, from the looks of things, now turning her attention back to the Key as well.

Pluto watches, and waits, once more.

<Pose Tracker> Sailor Moon [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Sailor Moon is... tired. She just wants to check on Naru and escort her home and then take a nap herself. Maybe a second lunch too. But right now so much is going on and she doesn't even understand it all.

That mysterious Magical Girl just kicked that Knight in the head, and he's senseless. Homura Akemi is... running. And...

Maybe she's lost a little faith in Mami Tomoe today. In the past she'd have assumed the best of what she's saying. She wouldn't sense a hidden threat.

She just wants to shout. She wants to scream. She wants to shake sense into all of them one by one, to find some understanding between them all that doesn't involve fighting.

"Mami-chan." Sailor Moon tries to stand tall, but her shoulders show her exhaustion, there are so many cuts in her Fuku. So many burns.

Her head feels dizzy, concussed perhaps. But really it's just that the whole world has been turned upside down and she still feels like she's reeling from it.

"What you're saying makes a lot of sense." She nods finally, because it does. "It may be Naru-chan's, but if I put it back I couldn't protect it that way. I don't know what it is, or what it would do if I kept it."

For all she knows, it might draw down a lot of attention to her home, to her family. "So I'm willing to trust you with Naru-chan's song. With this key. But..."

That word comes off her lips, and for a moment she looks hurt, vulnerable, "...couldn't you have just done that in the first place? Without shooting her? Without talking down to me? You should never have to make your point down the barrel of a gun. She's been mean to me too, time and time again. She tried to keep me from going to the North Pole, and..." Her voice softens, "...who knows what might have happened, if she had?"

She takes a long breath, "But it doesn't mean I want her hurt." She looks sidelong at the mysterious magical girl in domino mask then as well as if it were directed at her too, her hand clenching over the jeweled rod in her hand, before she looks back at Mami, trying to find her golden eyes. "It doesn't mean we can't come to an understanding if we just figure out what everyone wants and needs. We're all girls who have important things and people that we want to protect, and we can do that better if we just make that clear to each other, rather than fighting each other like this."

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

The Wind Knight comes up short, blinking at Mami. That's right, they HAVE met properly along the way ...

"This is the only time I've seen one of these battles over such a Key through to the end, Tomoe-san," the Wind Knight says with an apologetic smile. "Please fill one blank in for me, if you and Sailor Moon-san could explain ... what will happen to the girl which this Key was taken from, if it isn't returned to her? Will she awaken in good time, none the worse for wear? Or will she remain asleep, or comatose, until somebody who knows how to return it can do so - and whoever's hunting for these keys is halted in their quest?"

She does hold the Key out to Mami, ready to relinquish it - but hoping the answer to her question comes first.

<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sr4eB0WOwN0

That's inevitable, isn't it? To lose faith in someone. ...Someone who gets older...

Mami turns to look at Sailor Moon, continuing to flick her gaze between her and Fuu, for the moment. She sees the exhaustion, the burns...

The fact that she's still standing, despite them.

Mami shows no signs of exhaustion. The cuts in her outfit don't slow her; the burns that mar her sleeves don't weigh her down. She stands straight. ...Her hair's still perfect.

But she does watch as Sailor Moon speaks to her, as she looks hurt... as she shows her heart on her face.


Homura... who tried to stop Sailor Moon from going north. Who...

Mami shakes her head.

"You're sweet, Sailor Moon. Sweet, and kind. You really brighten any room you're in." A pause. "...I apologize for talking down to you. But the rest..."

Mami lets out a breath, and looks right back into Sailor Moon's blue eyes. But she pauses, before she says anything else, and nods to Fuu.

"...Nothing happens to the girl it came from. At least, not that I've seen. She'll wake up fine. And Sailor Moon knows how to reach me, if that changes."

Mami walks over, and takes the key, politely this time, since Fuu has offered it to her. She looks back to Sailor Moon's eyes.

"...You believe in beautiful things. And we all do have things that are important to us. ...But some things are more important than peace, Sailor Moon. Some things are /worth/ fighting for. Sometimes..."

"You can understand someone, and still fight them. You can care deeply, and still fight them. Because love... isn't everything."

Mami shakes her head. "...Take care of yourselves. I hope you can go on precisely as you are."

Mami turns, to start to walk away.

<Pose Tracker> Sailor Pluto [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

"The girl will be unharmed." Pluto's low voice carries, and she takes a step forward -- not approaching, exactly, but making her presence known. The battle has left Sailor Pluto largely untouched, unlike the rest of the remaining combatants. Her sailor suit is has no rips, and her hair still flows like silk in the wind. Only a few bruises on her arms attest to her involvement in the melee.

"Whoever claims ownership of the Key also assumes responsibility for its power, and by extension, for Shitamachi itself." She levels her gaze at Mami Tomoe, and privately wonders what her girl's feud is with Homura Akemi. "Are you prepared to do so?"

<Pose Tracker> Sailor Moon [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Something in her eyes softens again as Mami apologies but...

It's a relief that Naru will be fine. But the other, older veteran Magical Girl just can't buy into what she's saying. Her shoulders hunch together a little, she looks down. "I know that." Something sparkles in her eyes, as she admits that she knows that lesson. She says it so unhappily. "But it's still so sad, to act like it's inevitable. That there's no other way. This shouldn't be a world where anyone should think they have to do that. I don't- won't accept that it has be like that."

She'd like to say that she can change it, but she doesn't think she has the power or the wisdom to make that kind of daunting resolution.

But Sailor Pluto takes a step forward, and Sailor Moon finds herself a little flushed as she looks up from the tips of her long silken hair to her eyes behind the mask. She's wearing a Sailor Fuku, and it looks so similar, but does that mean anything with that mask, those eyes? "Who are you? How do you know these things?"

And then before she can stop herself, she takes one half-step forward, towards her, and the words spill out of her lips like water, "Are you a Sailor Senshi?" She blurts it out, but she can't take it back. She just sounds so hopeful, and bewildered all at once.

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

And the Wind Knight hands the key over without further argument. "I'll help to protect Shitamachi if needed," she states to the mysterious new Sailor. "If I'm called to provide backup, or if I'm in the area when trouble breaks out, I'll do my utmost to assist."

She pauses, her hands flexing slightly and not too steadily. "... at the moment, though, I'm afraid I need to rest and recover," she admits with a wry smile.

<Pose Tracker> Mami Tomoe [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

Sailor Pluto is /there/, and Mami pauses, halting her steps and turning towards the mysterious woman before her--the one she saw with Homura. The one who...

Not even Mami is prepared, in that moment, to reject that quiet authority by simply walking away.

So instead, she looks towards her, meeting her eyes. It's almost difficult to do; there's something imposing about her... and about her words, before. But it's not only that. Mami couldn't say what it is. But still, she has to think a moment. What she says /now/...

"For Shitamachi," Mami repeats. It's firm, and serious. Her hatpin glinting in the light, her eyes golden, Mami inclines her head. "Yes. ...I'm not unfamiliar with that kind of responsibility."

Does it mean she'll have to fight the girl who claims Shitamachi, too?

For a moment, Mami looks to Sailor Moon again, and offers, "I agree. It's sad, but it's the world we live in. You don't have to accept it. Just keep being the same Sailor Moon you've been. You can help the world in your own way, and I'll take on that responsibility for you."

She turns again to Sailor Pluto, "And this one. ...But I wonder the same."

<Pose Tracker> Sailor Pluto [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Sailor Pluto meets Mami's eyes and takes her measure. The seconds extend, breathless, and then she nods back, solemn. "Guard it well, and know that Shitamachi in its turn will give back to you. But you must keep it from the darkness." Another appraising look assures Pluto that this young-seeming girl does, indeed, have the fortitude to protect what needs protecting. There is a look in her eyes, a vigilance Pluto recognizes well: the dedication of a guardian. She makes no move to stop Mami as she leaves.

"I..." At Sailor Moon's questions Pluto pauses, and for the first time is visibly picking her words with care. She looks at her future Queen, and there is a glimpse of regret in her eyes before she shakes her head. "I must go." She takes a step back, into the shade of the tree where she'd sat peacefully on a bench sipping tea not too long ago. After a moment's hesitation she bows, a graceful and smooth gesture. "I wish you strength, Sailor Moon. We will meet again."

Another step back and the shadows swallow her entirely. The leaves of the tree rustle, but that might just be the wind. She is gone.