2018-05-11 - SPACE JAIL: Jail Break

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Jail Break

Having escaped their cells and regained their transformation artifacts, the abductees are led by Ruby to the cell of Sapphire, who is being threatened by some kind of Black Crystal implement. It turns out to be a trap laid by Peridot -- but she isn't strong enough to stop the group from protecting the feelings of that relationship!


Steven Universe, Amethyst, Kasagami Araki, Niramo Umokeshi, Ami Mizuno, Mikoto Minagi, Fate Testarossa, Endo Naoki, Setsuna Meioh, Fuu Hououji, Yumi Ohzora, Nori Ankou, Saki Hyuuga, Peridot, Ruby, Sapphire, Garnet

GM: Hotaru Tomoe



OOC - IC Date:

05-11-2018 - 04-17-2018

This scene began with a montage of everyone's adventures in SPACE JAIL.

<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (6)] has posed.

Huff huff huff. A hero's job is never done!

Steven Universe continues down the halls, trying to find any more people captured. THe sound of his flip-flops echo as a herald to a rescue. The boy was tired, hungry, and still with that swollen eye, feeling a little tingly from all the barriers, and with a bunch of white fur stuck to his shirt from an adorable alien dog... but he was still trucking!

The boy rounds a corner, a finally stumbles in to a hall of cells, and immediately sees someone he was hoping to. "A-Amethyst!" The boy calls out, running over to the cage. He almost tears up, but fights it off. One of three. Pearl must have been separated. Garnet... He has to find the other two...! "I'm gonna break you out!"

The boy intercedes his body into the beam, as energy lines assault him and shock him, but provides a small hole in the cell's defense, plenty big enough for a particular purple gem to slink through. "I've freed a bunch of other people! They are finding their magic item things and we're gonna stage a comeback for sure!" The boy looks around. "We should go..."

Steven glances around. Something tells him to follow the way he came. "This way! Come on! We gotta find the others!" The boy leads his partner in crime back toward a room that he has been through before. Something is there... "Have you seen Pearl?" he asks Amethyst. He doesn't really remember too much after the knockout. What a headbutt.

He skids around a corner, and can see the room in the distance from down a hall. "THis way!"

<Pose Tracker> Amethyst [None] has posed.

"Star date... whatever. Not like I'm actually recording this." Amethyst talks to herself as she's trapped in her cell. "No idea how long I've been in here, but I am gonna SMASH Jasper for this! I am not overbaked!" She sighs, then flops onto the ground, sprawled out. "I am not..."

Her dismay and anger is put on hold as she hears a familiar voice. "Steven? Is that you?" She shoots up off the ground, staring out of the field. "How did you escape? Way to go! I thought I was gonna have to save your butt, not the other way arou-" She then gasps as Steven reaches for the barrier. "WAIT NO DON'T TOUCH IT!"

She winces as Steven is fried and sent flying across the ship... until she opens her eyes and realizes that has not happened. "How..." She facepalms. "Of COURSE! These were probably made for Gems! They don't know what to do with you! Steven, you're amazing." She rolls through the hole and slaps Steven on the back. "We're back in business!"

Amethyst follows her favorite human-gem hybrid through the ship. "I haven't seen Pearl... probably wants to keep us separated. You sure you know where we're going? Eh whatever." She shrugs and just follows Steven's funky flow.

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

~Jail House(Ship) Montage~

Wake up in a horrible cold and barren cell, cram packed with Niramo and Fuu. Still suffering from agony thanks to the Destabilizer. Crying, hugging, and generally trying to keep it together for everyone's sake. No one is happy.

More general despair, with Kassie trying to keep everyone's mind on the game. Things improve greatly when Pluto arrives with Takk in tow, and they're sprung! But not without the brave distraction of Niramo's brave mascot to help in the effort!

FLEE! Kasagami and Pluto get lost from the others, but still hand in hand. They find a storage room and begin both their tearful reunions, joy despite the situation, then search for their artifact while staying extra sneaky. Success! Albeit with a JOY BALL from an opened egg killing their ears and nearly them. RIP Kassie's favorite hoodie.

They're joined by Ami fleeing robonoids, and Kassie welcomes with both relieved ruffles and flirting to get everyone's mind off of the situation. And a spacepup! Ruby happens. Robonoids break in, but the magical girls fend them off after Ami regains her artifact! Kassie learns to hate robo-goop.


That thrumm of power as the group makes their way catches the young Duelist's attention. Her wooden sword she'd recovered as well as her ring is in one hand, laid across her shoulder. Her other is clasp in Pluto's hand, squeezing reassuringly every now and then. But her eye is on the desolate hallways of the ship, always ready for more patrols. Stealth is key, even now, always stopping to check what vaguely can be defined as corners in the ship. Another glance. She motions to her two favorite genius senshi.

"I can feel something."

The athletic Duelist, mostly freed of robo-gunk, then dashes towards the central chamber lead purely on magical instinct, and she has no doubt her friends feel it as well.

COMBAT: Kasagami Araki transforms into Crimson Rose Duelist!
COMBAT: Ami Mizuno transforms into Sailor Mercury!
COMBAT: Setsuna Meioh transforms into Sailor Pluto!
<Pose Tracker> Niramo Umokeshi [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

The Gem hand-ship has not been kind to Niramo Umokeshi. After waking up in a cramped cell with both Kasagami Araki and Fuu Hououji, she is cheered up and comforted by her cell mates in a place not designed for humans to enjoy. Tears were shed, walls were punched and toilets coming out of walls are proven to be a hazardous for cells. Eventually the three are freed by an de-transformed Sailor Pluto, with assistance of the Kwami Takk, who managed to escape his containment pod.

Splitting into two groups, Niramo and Fuu go off on their own to try to find their trinkets, but with unfortunate advice from Takk, ends up freeing a cloud spider that made simply too much noise. Fleeing and hiding an empty cell, which also accidentally happened to be the same cell they escaped earlier, the two barely managed to escape being captured once more only due to the fact their cell was still technically occupied.

After collecting herself from the near miss, Niramo follows Fuu to a new storage room, this one containing a wiggling pod. Freeing a cute little fairy named Flappy from the pod, Niramo and Fuu discuss next on what they should do before Takk calls them over to two pods in practical. Opening the pods reveals an emerald-crested glove and one silver anklet, one that each girl are more than happy to have back in their possession.

Despite their attempts otherwise, Flappy flies off in search of Saki, and with their trinkets back in hand, Niramo reluctantly parts with Fuu in an attempt to find an exit or an airlock on board the ship. After a close call with another robonoid patrol and seeing nothing but cells and viewports showing an empty void outside, Niramo puts her Miraculous back on and transforms back into Sourisi!

Running down another hallway, the lack of doorways with neon signs around them saying 'Exit' is starting to get annoying to her. Sure, there was a pair of yellow doors she remembers passing nearly an hour ago, but with it sealed shut and leading back into the ship, no way it was the exit for them. "If there's a way out, there's a way in, i'm sure of it! Huh?" Coming to a stop in an intersection, the mouse-suited magical girl feels a slow building of pressure deep inside the ship, and with no futher recourse left to here at the moment starts to run for the center chamber, the circular room being a nexus for other hallways and a glass dome above her, showing more of the inky darkness that lies beyond.

COMBAT: Niramo Umokeshi transforms into Sourisi!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Mercury [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

It feels like time has passed so slowly since everyone had been captured from the beach. Ami Mizuno's time in space jail so far has not been easy. Waking up in strange place and knowing that all of her closest friends are in very real danger and on top of that, having horrible, dark dreams too that she cannot explain has left the Sailor Guardian exhausted.

Even though she had felt some relief that Steven had freed her and she figured out how to let people out of their cells, assisting Pluto and Fate along the way, it was still far from easy. Her thoughts when she finally had a chance to rest always went back to when were they going to figure out how to get out of here and were the other guardians and the rest of her friends going to be okay.

After being separated for awhile from everyone else, Ami had come no closer to finding any of the answers she was looking for. Her vast knowledge helped with the cell locks but other than that, nothing else had made sense to her on board this ship. The forcefield that left her and her allies in this battle unconscious was unlike anything she had ever seen or even imagined existed. What was even more confusing to her was that Steven seemed to be immune to it and didn't know why. Her only comfort in her time alone on the ship after being freed was the little weird, but adorable, fluffy dog they had found in an egg.

Thankfully she wasn't alone long after coming upon Pluto and Kasagami and subsequently finding her transformation pen. They had then been forced into combat with robonoids who discovered their location while in pursuit of Ruby. Luckily, it was easy enough to handle them but now that they had been found out, it seemed like it would be best to continue looking for other prisoners.

Leaving the little ball of fluff behind, Ami, now as Sailor Mercury, follows Pluto and Kasagami away from the storage area when Kasagami makes her announcement. "What?" She asks after being pulled from distracting thoughts. It takes a few seconds for her to realize what Kasagami is talking about but then she finally notices it too. "Oh... I see what you mean. Let's follow it!"

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

BGM: Nevermore - The Heart Collector https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cqaXTek_-U

There is something below the sand, in the bay. It has sunk down beneath those shards of softened glass, pressed deep by the gravitational field, malevolent and lurking. Low tide cannot reveal it; it was flung too far out to be seen, perhaps Mikoto's final useful act.

And it cannot feel her at all.This is unacceptable. A blade must have a guardian. Her work is yet undone; she may not rest. There is a greater purpose, still, for Mikoto and Miroku both. They cannot be apart. She must be by its side. Mikoto belongs to her obsidian masters. To Miroku.

... that woman has interrupted a great and terrible work, and this is something which can never be forgiven.

Ancient things think nothing of time. It presses at the edges it has torn away, the edges where it ought to live. It calls out, a constant beacon of darkness to her mind. It seeks her presence, her location, her heart. It will find her. She cannot escape for long.

It calls. It waits. It is patient. It will not accept failure.

That is not dead which can eternal lie...

BGM Change: Iron & Wine - An Angry Blade https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DKa1QcGode4

There were people - ancient people, long dead - who believed that obsidian was the blood of the earth. Perhaps this is why Mikoto understands her obsidian blade so intuitively as something which dwells inside her heart, which shares in the blood which flows there. They are joined there; they are inseparable; they have always faced the world alongside each other.

But now, she is alone. She is so desperately alone, in ways she never thought possible.

Perhaps it's even worse, that for a time she had company... in the form of one of her worst enemies. The only other person nearby, the only source of comfort, and yet Mikoto could not reach out - but to try and help him better destroy their common enemy. There was someone else, and yet she was alone, under stress and terror and uncertainty.

And then Steven rescued her, brought her to the obsidian pendant which means so much to her, and she was able to begin her search in earnest - and get away from Endo Naoki.

The search has not gone well, like all Mikoto's searches tend to do.

There is a beaten woman in a cell who doesn't want to be let out. Once she's figured that out, Mikoto ignores her. There is a woman rushing about yelling for Sapphire. Mikoto feels a brief kinship with her, and, again, ignores her.

She finds no one else. The ship is vast, and Mikoto is deliberately avoiding being found. She knows, so bitterly, the likelihood of her success were she to fight right now. She springs up, presses herself against the edges of the ceiling, latched between strange tubes as the robonoids pass. She is a hunter; she has learnt so much from her feline friends. Enough to evade notice.

Miroku is nowhere to be found. She's found something like food in one of the storage rooms, but even though she cannot afford to collapse, she just can't force it down; it is too acrid, too alarming, too alien on her sensitive tongue. She's found bizarre aliens, none of which, mercifully, posed a threat. But she hasn't found Miroku... she's searched all over, but it is not here. Mikoto is glad, in a way. Maybe it hasn't been captured here alongside her? But she needs Miroku. She is having to run from everything, hide from everything. She will not survive the fight. Alone, she cannot hope to defeat her enemies. She must find Miroku - her life depends on it. Mikoto can't do this alone!

BGM Change: Paramore - My Heart https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SKI2FgH87ww

Her head snaps up, eyes narrowing as she realises the familiar pressure on her thoughts. Her breath catches in her throat for one agonising moment as everything she has lost reaches back out to her. It is a weight which settles down, comfortingly, covering torn edges and filling yawning gaps. It is guidance, wisdom, duty -


- it is the knowledge that she is loved, and has not been abandoned after all.

Her motions are practiced, drilled through years of experience. Mikoto reaches with outstretched hand, fingers splayed wide, and the word is fierce and sure on her lips, this time: "MIROKU!"

Hers is a blade which has always come at a word.

It just took a little longer, this time.

Below the waters of Earth, a obsidian blade vibrates into nothingness. Slamming down from the ceiling, an obsidian blade sparkles into existence. It curves down, bites into the ground beside Mikoto, spidery cracks which mar diamond patterns in the most satisfying away.

"Miroku," Mikoto whispers its name, hushed and reverent, as she takes it in her hands, and they shake from the relief as she runs her thumb down the dampened cord. She knows every millimetre of the texture there, the place of every thread; each and every one is in its proper place. "Miroku..." It is relief and it is gratitude and it is love, love, love.

"Miroku's okay..?" Those terrible yellow eyes scan her claymore as she kneels down, running a hand along the flat of the blade. She knows every line, every embellishment; all are in their proper place. Her voice shakes, as her fears are assuaged. It has been submerged, but it has not been tampered with. It has not been harmed. "Miroku's okay..."

Her obsidian heart hammers in her chest but it is whole, it is whole and she is filled and she is not alone.

"I- I-" I'm so sorry, Miroku! Mikoto sniffles against tears which aren't despondent any more, shifting her grip to one hand so she can scrub at bright and shining eyes. Forgive me, Miroku. We belong together... I never knew... never knew anything could...

But she knows they are not yet safe, and Mikoto nods, swallowing at the lump in her throat. ... yeah. I won't let it happen again. Together...

Her eyes sharpen as she grasps Miroku in a double-handed grip again, her lip curling up in a snarl, and she finds words for this much. "... let's destroy them all."


That grip tightens, and she runs down the hall towards the call of power, a line of sparks where Miroku carves a thin line across the floor. It is a clear signal, to anyone who passes: she has been here. And she is not helpless, any more.

COMBAT: Mikoto Minagi transforms into HiME Mikoto!
<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [Infinity Institute (5)] has posed.

A very normal Fate Testarossa has seen better days. It seems like a cruel joke that she'd escape imprisonment at the hands of the TSAB to end up in a prison of a different sort. Right now though the universe's sense of humor though is more who she's sharing her cellmate with.

Sailor Pluto - masked with skirt fabric has asked the girl laying on the cell floor a question. A question in response to information unasked for. And she must answer.

"If the world can give me a chance... then it can give her one too. That's what I think. So I'm going to fight for her... and put my faith in her. And hope that the world we both want comes to pass for her too."


Hope seemed further away than ever. The water was barely enough, the bathroom breaks were scarce. Bardiche was not with her - and her magic felt further away than ever. Until two figures turned the corner. A blue-haired girl working at the control panel and... "Steven!?"

Maybe not so far away after all...


The girl enters a storage room with her companions to find a strange dog laying on the floor, which immediately gets up and yips - wagging it's tail. After so long without Arf being nearby - Fate Testarossa absolutely reaches out a hand hesitantly to pet it. But just before she makes contact, she puts a finger to her lips.

And then she just spends a few minutes petting it as it makes excited turns to force the hand to pet other areas.

For the first time since coming here the girl manages a smile.


The girl nervously presses against a wall of a side corridor as a Robonoid rolls past, looking at the others. When it stops to swivel around - she catches her breath.

It's a blessed coincidence that at the same time-

A girl is heard singing in the distance. The Robonoid in response to that stimulus of lovely song turns around in that direction and continues on it's patrol.


It's been a long search through many - many storage rooms with both tense traps and strange sights of new life. "Where is he..." But finally she spies something that causes her eyes to light up. "Ah! There!" Kasagami announces that he feels something and she calls out back to the hallways - "Go on ahead! I'll catch up!"

Tracing a finger across the geometric outline, she whispers, "... Bardiche Assaulto. Set up." Upon receiving the command, he flares to life with a warm light only to start stating in synthetic tones, <Order of Set Up was Accepted. Operating Check of System Initiated. Main System Set Up. Condition All Green. Get Set.>

"Did you have a nice rest?" <Yes Sir.> "I'm so sorry that we got seperated... it must have been frightening." The Device hesitates for a little while before chiming his affirmation. <Yes Sir.> Hugging him with her hands to her chest she says quietly, "We have to get going I'm afraid..." <Yes Sir. Drive Ignition.>

A double helix of gold flares to life and with a flash of lightning - Fate Testarossa flies out of the storage room alongside the others, rubbing her fingers one last time over the dog's flank as she flies over it. Though she asks a little more cautiously than the others - "It could be a trap... what do you think Sailor Mercury?"

She'd come to trust the girl's skills throughout their time here. Her ability to suss out the technology and its traps.

COMBAT: Fate Testarossa transforms into Barrier Jacket Assault!
<Pose Tracker> Endo Naoki [Juuban Public School (12)] has posed.

Endo sits huddled in a small storage room, half-buried under a blanket of the egg-like capsules that fill his hiding spot. He breathes, slowly, tries to focus. His hands are clasped tight the roughly cut purple stone between his fingers.

Since his escape, courtesy of Steven, he's been ducking back and forth, looking for an exit or signs of other captives, taking shelter from passing robonoids in whatever rooms he can find. He wasn't keen to let Steven run off on his own, but trying to track the boy down again through the mess of hallways has proved frustratingly difficult. His attempts to activate Fallen Stern and reform his barrier have proven equally problematic.

Which isn't going to stop him from trying again.

Endo's fingers close tighter around his artifact, and his eyes squeeze shut in concentration. There's pain there, numbness, but he claws for the energy to push past it. Steven and the Crystal Gems needs him. His friends, everyone else. There can be no more Mamis, or Garnets, no more failures because he wasn't strong enough.

Ugly purple light leaks from between his fingers. "Fallen Sternplease." Brighter, and brighter still. "Set up!"

Soundtrack: Determination - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ssS-UIKZh8

Light burns, down his fingers, across his arms, further still. It leaves behind armor, black metal and white cloth underneath, a purple cape behind. It leaves behind a sword, huge and terrible and as perfect in his hands as it has even been.


"Me too." Endo expels a long breath of effort.

"Let's go."

Out of the storage room and down the hall, in leaps and bounds. Soon enough Endo turns toward the central hub, both the boy and his Device drawn toward the energy they sense there.

COMBAT: Endo Naoki transforms into Barrier Jacket Aufprall!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Pluto [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

It's been a long, long day for Sailor Pluto, even when factoring in and then discarding that it began on Earth and has ended up somewhere in the far and unknown reaches of space. Began in the Tomoe mansion... But unyielding mortal peril makes diversion enough, and the senshi has had little time to dwell on what transpired in the Tokyo she's left behind.

At least she woke up before Fate Testarossa did, in their shared cell. It gave her time to refashion the red ribbon that once adorned her violet skirtsuit as a bow into a makeshift mask instead, to protect her identity. It didn't protect her from conversation, though. From being locked in with Fate's painful naivete. Getting out of there was many kinds of relief, thanks to Steven Universe and...

Ami Mizuno, Sailor Mercury: a revelation that feels like a puzzle piece sliding into place.

But they had their priorities and Pluto had hers, and so she slipped away down another corridor soon after being freed. Finding the cell that held her love in with Niramo and Fuu felt like the first favorable break in far too long, and freeing them was owed in part to Takk and in part to learning about the touchscreens from Mercury. A patrol split them from Kassie's cellmates after.

They've been together since, inseparable.

Through flight from patrols and encounters with all manner of strangeness from alien pods, through the halls as desperate and depowered escapees and then later as a duelist and a senshi, through battles and in exhausted stolen naps curled up side by side, they've been together. In still moments, Pluto's eyes steal over to Kasagami; whenever possible, their hands clasp.

Running into Ami Mizuno again turned out to be another stroke of luck, and together they managed to take down some Robonoids -- at somewhat goopish cost. Now the senshi is splattered from roughly the neck down in a very thin layer of teal robot guts. The worst of it has dripped and been scraped free. She moves with her normal dignity, albeit slightly... affronted. At least it didn't get in her hair...

It got Mercury's Lip Rod back to her, though, and Sailor Pluto can only see that as a good thing. Fighting and moving alongside the Inner Senshi has been an experience of quiet observation for Pluto, mostly.

She squeezes Kassie's hand back and ghosts along down the hallways, moving with practiced silence. With a glance to Sailor Mercury, Pluto nods. "I feel it, too." Her other hand shifts its grip on the Garnet Rod. They take off together, pelting toward the source of the growing energy all three of them feel.

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

The only way this could have been worse, Fuu thinks, is if she'd genuinely been all alone on the Gems' Handship. Just knowing there are other magical girls on board (and the occasional boy, like Steven) does a lot to keep her from succumbing to despairing helplessness - but if that were all she had to fall back on, she'd probably still wind up back in a cell.

What she *does* have, instead of despair, is desperation.

Supposedly, somebody who has absolutely nothing to lose and no hope of escape will fight harder than you can ever imagine. Fuu at least *has* that hope of escape - in theory, anyway - but logic denies her any true means of returning home without a lot of help and even more good luck. The bridge is manned (Gemmed, whatever) at practically all times; engineering is inaccessible; Robonoids seem to roam every corridor at least once every ten minutes, forcing her to stay on the move when she isn't in a storage room.

One of those storage rooms held her glove-jewel, thankfully; another storage room, investigated at random while she waited for the next patrol to pass, relinquished a still more precious treasure - one which now rests again underneath her blouse, a vine-styled chain about her neck to hold the seed-like pendant in place. That pendant brought with it a still greater desperation - the knowledge that if, in spite of all the odds, she *doesn't* somehow make it back to Earth, to Tokyo, then a far greater calamity may be brought forth upon all who remain on the planet of her birth.

From the moment the pendant came to rest once more about her neck, a singular intensity of focus seemed to settle on Fuu with it - an awareness and determination that every move, every action, must be correct. Any mistake, even a moment's bad luck, could doom far more than Fuu Hououji herself - and she knows it. She knows it with every footfall, with every sound of a skittering Robonoid, with every echo of Peridot's fury-laced voice.

She knows it right up to the moment that she pauses at an intersection and her gut tells her, in no uncertain terms, to turn left *here*.

She follows her gut, finally reaching into the pocket of her skirt and drawing out the white glove with its gold trim and large green jewel, tugging it onto her hand for the first time since her last view of an Earthly sky. "Belief becomes power ..." she whispers, half-braced for the searing shock that she remembers so clearly despite her stupor at the time.

"... winds, guide me!"

No shock, no searing, just the welcome sensation of a magical breeze enfolding her, garbing her in the so-familiar armor of the Magic Knight of Wind. Her pace quickens just a bit as the whirlwind dissipates, although her face shows no sign of relief - just that same focused determination.

<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IhxlwQFiGyA

Silently, the hunter stalks through the storage room, creeping behind a particularly large orb that helps hide her. ...Beyond, there are things in that halls, but here... Here, there is silence. She steps, one paw at a time, tension taut through her, and then--

Nobody knows the troubles Ive seen..." comes a plaintive voice, a sort of squeaking pitch-perfect emulation of a baritone voice that just so happens to have been pitch-shifted up several octaves.

One of the storage nooks has a floating bubble in the corner.

"Nobody knows... my sorrows..."

Within that nook is a half-sprawled otter wearing a glittering waistcoat, or its remains. He is dejected. Despondent. But then he straightens up, looking down his snout towards the liberated figure passing. He dares, in that moment, to hope.

Well, and then Tama, cat guardian of the Staff of Lost Ivy, rises to her hind paws, brings out her claws, and rakes at the orb, freeing the otter within. "My name is Tama," she introduces herself. "...And I have someone to find."

"My name is Batiste, the son of Francoise," says the otter. "I do, too. In this moment, I think... we are one anothers hope."

"Yes..." Tama looks over Batiste, and nods. "Then let us go. ...But lets skip the singing until we get out, shall we?"


Padding down the hallways is tense, of course. The knowledge that their magical girls might not be any great protection even if they were here, sobering. It's the companions who so often bear the brunt of that gravity, shoulders weighed by the reality of a world turning dark.

Unrelatedly, a persistent squeaking sound presages a pair of puffballs stacked on top of each other paddling into view, a small fairy creature with a marking reminiscent of the silhouette of a flower bursting around the corner recklessly, peering left and then right. "Saki-lapi! I can feel her around here somewhere-lapi...!"

Tama leaps back in an instant, black fur standing on on her back, sharp teeth showing and claws out--and then stops, and sighs. "Be quiet," the cat hisses, green eyes narrowed at the fairy. "..." She looks over the fairy and turns up her nose.

"Tama is right," Batiste breathes. "We may only have one chance. But well get through this, I swear to you." Am I lying to a fairy?, the mustelid wonders. (Even Batiste gets into the self-doubt act sometimes.)

...Very well. I can sense mine, as well..." Tama pads off, letting the others follow. "Honestly..."


"T-tama!? And... otter!?" Yumi blinks, sliding up from her perch on the floor a little woozily. "You--" AND FLAPPY, maybe there's dialogue for mascots, keep it simple maybe, i'll add some--

"Otter?" Nori says from the back of the cell.

Batiste squeaks in delight, but remains focused now, focused with deadly precision upon the lock screen that is just barely above his snout. Stretched up on his uttermost length, the elongation of his riverine body strained as far as it can go without agony, balanced on his plumptious yet charming tail, he is able to reach.

Not well! Not with clear vision! But he can reach. First the left paw, extending upwards - thats the long one, he can see the glowing point. Touch that spot and there is a sound! His right paw comes up as he strains, his jaw tensing, his tail shaking, eyes rolling back in his head.

"Nghhhhh" and "hrrk!" A second chime.

"If I can reach them, you can too, Tama! We can do it!" Batiste says through the strain!

"Yes..." Tama considers, "Hang on, Yumi. Well have to... manipulate this object." It sounds distasteful, the way she says it. But she compresses and then stands up on her hind legs, reeaaaching out her graceful paws towards the touchscreen. "...Here-- and...!"

"Saki-lapi!" Flappy yelps, scampering to the opposite cell and flailing at the gate. "We have to get you out of here-lapi! I'll just--!"

"Flappy!" Saki says, waving her arms. "Go help them! It'll go faster!"

Flappy looks back. Sets himself with the poise of a battle hardened flower fairy. And then whips around and hollers, "Brace yourselves-lapi!"

And then he bounds off of Batiste's head, flips over Tama, and just lands with both feet on the console. He plants his hands on his puffy hips with pride. There might be a little fanfare.

"Gah--" Tama starts to complain--but thanks to the three of their efforts, the yellow field dissipates. The cell is open.

<Pose Tracker> Nori Ankou [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

"Well this is going well," Yumi says brightly. They turn the corner and see-- "...Maybe... we wont go... that way..."

"Cousin, doesnt it look like a -"

"Not now," Batiste tells Nori.

Half a hallway later, he says, "It really rather did look like one, didnt it?"

"Mm," Nori agrees. It seems to help her mood.


"I--hate--running--" Yumi wheezes in a whisper, booking it the other way from the floating orbs that are quickly going to chase them. She makes it a few yards before she trips over her own feet, tumbling to the ground and rolling straight into a very scary, very orange woman. She blinks dazedly up at her, alone in this hallway. "...H-hi...?"

When Jasper hits her with the Destabilizer this time she is totally out. ...but with the distraction, at least Nori and Saki can slip away.


"Honestly," a mature feminine voice calls from outside Yumis cell, "You worried me terribly. Dont run when you cant see like that. ...Hold on, and well get you back out."

"Ha ha... ha..." Yumi groans a little, and pulls a little inhaler out of her jacket pocket. "Okay..."

As they go, Wiseman floats by, a black cloak with a crystal ball, and looks straight at Yumi. It's creepy.


"OK, I wont jinx it this time," Yumi announces whispered to the group.

"You'd better not-lapi!" Flappy grumps.

Saki picks him up by the ears. "Quiet!" she hisses.

<Pose Tracker> Saki Hyuuga [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

The storage room is filled with wonders... but... not filled with one, tiny thing. A certain witch sighs. "...I was hoping my glasses would be here," Yumi complains, as she reaches through the goop and takes hold of her phone, grimacing at the residue on it. "At least its waterproof..." Its a green-and-white thing, with cellphone charms on it--and within a few moments its on, and a tall, white staff with a green crystal at the tip is in her hand, beautiful spiraling wood.

"Im not sure I can use it yet, but..."

"Flappy!" Saki hisses. "Do you sense the Mix cards around anywhere!? I don't see them in here!"

Flappy looks up, blankly. "Oh-lapi. I have them-lapi."

"SINCE W--" Saki slaps her own hand over her mouth, squats down, and attempts to kill her fairy with her mind. "Since when."

"Since...the whole time...lapi...?"

Saki's hands slowly twist into claws. "You...!!"


"...Here goes nothing..." Yumi breathes. "But if you say I can do it, Tama--"

"Staff of Lost Ivy! In my hand, remembered be!" Brilliant green erupts in a column, and over the next few moments, her pink attire changes to black and green, a wide-brimmed hat on her head and her staff forward.

Noris hand wraps around the battered handle of her salvaged lantern, bent and repaired by tape, even now. She breathes out.

"Twinned in the mirror," she says as the creaking brass lens-flap flips open and light pours out, clinging to her, pouring over her like a superfluid might. The brass lantern sheds its seeming, becoming crystal and ammolite. La Sirene de Diamant is revealed in a sparkled shower of a thousand subtle variations, focusing together on the black diamonds that decorate her hands, her blouse, the diamonds on the soles of her shoes.

She does not look at Yumi right away. "... it wont go the same way, this time."

Batiste still seems obscurely anxious.

Flappy puffs into a pouch on Saki's belt, the Mix cards appearing in their slot as they always do. She doesn't think about them that often; one marked BLOOM with a bursting sunflower. Another marked FILIA, with an icon of a delicate, goddess-like young woman; slender of build, probably not even out of her teens, eyes closed but with a calm, compassionate smile, her green-gowned body is surmounted by a halo shaped like a golden heart.

Saki slips them into the top of the Mix Commune, puts her fingers to the dial and spins. It's a little lonely. This never feels right without Mai at her side. But...

"We'll get home," she says, quietly. "I'm coming, Mai! SPIRITUAL POWER!"

Saki Hyuuga vanishes in a waterfall of rainbow light.

Cure Bloom's fists tighten in readiness as it passes.

COMBAT: Yumi Ohzora transforms into Witch Ivy!
COMBAT: Saki Hyuuga transforms into Cure Bloom!
COMBAT: Nori Ankou transforms into La Sirene de Diamant!
<Pose Tracker> Hotaru Tomoe [Infinity Institute (7)] has posed.

The rising power, it transpires, is Ruby. She's pacing in tight circles in the middle of the largest of the Hand Ship's chambers, one with a vast open roof filled with stars -- and the Earth, distant, blue and green and vulnerable. There are scorched spots on the floor from the heat she's giving off, all the more with every passing second, though there is no actual fire.

She is muttering to herself, the sound of a person with both a migraine and an immovable object that the unstoppable force of her determination keeps bruising itself against.

"stoppeditsstoppedi'vefoundherbutican'tgettoherwhatdoidowhyisitsoquiet, too quiet, she'sstoppedshe'sstoppedshe'sSTEVEN. SHE'S STOPPED.

Steven, at the head of the group attracted by her power, is abruptly gripped by the shirt collar with two red-hot hands. She doesn't touch his skin, but the shirt itself will have burnt handprints, afterwards.

"You, and your friends," she grits out in a controlled tone that suggests she is having to force herself to slow down enough to speak clearly, "Have to help me save Sapphire. Right now. She's in danger. Something's wrong. SHE'S STOPPED SINGING."

Her expression does not brook argument, or even much in the way of comment -- or, well, people can be as heartfelt as they want, she just doesn't care -- as she simply salutes the gathering crowd and leads them straight down the main hallway towards Sapphire's cell.

There is good cause to speed up along the way: BLACK LIGHT is leaking down the ship from up ahead, oozing like something between week-old coffee and magma.

Ruby's right: something is wrong.

BGM: Black Moon Theme #1 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djGhBrjJyKA

The cell's field is yellow no longer, but has become a tainted sort of nasty green. Probably because of the black crystal shard jammed into it, which is pointing threateningly at the small, presumably blue occupant within (right now, like the energy she's behind, she looks a bit green).

COMBAT: Fuu Hououji transforms into Wind Knight!
<Pose Tracker> Endo Naoki [Juuban Public School (12)] has posed.

Endo no longer has to hide, nor run in any direction but the one he's aiming to get to. He goes relatively fast too, for the giant sword he drags behind him. He'd probably be easy to follow, considering the grooves and marks he leaves.

And when he gets to the central chamber, he pauses at the sight of Ruby and Steven. "Steven-san! You're still okay!" His mouth opens to ask a question after that, but there's no time to convince the small gem of anything but storming off in the direction of Sapphire's cell. He has little choice but to follow, taking a glance over at Steven to confirm this is the right idea.

His expression quickly becomes more worried as he notices the black energy around the cell, and his pace speeds soon after.

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

They get into the room, the team of black-green-and-blue. Kasagami presses her boots down to skid to a stop on instinct as the source of power turns out to be the raging Gem that's both impressed and caused trouble for them. Also that heat wave catches Kassie's attention enough that she drops Pluto's hands, and takes up a defensive position with a quickness. Her sword is held warily. She glances to Pluto, the moves to shield Mercury from some of the heat.

Steven is here. Yumi. Mikoto. Fate. Nori. Niramo. Amethyst. Endo. Enemies and allies alike, but there's circumstance to be considered. As well as Ruby's clearly strained and passionate appeal.

A glance to her two closest allies, and then back.

One hand wipes the sweat from her brow, but Kasagami grins and bears it. Figuratively at least.

"If Steven's up for it...only lead we have on maybe getting out of here."

A forced grin, fake bravado, and then she too is rushing towards that cell even as blackness rises and she coughs from something other than her own deep-down fears.

"Let's go everyone! Steve-kun, rumors say you're the one who's been freeing people, take point!" She offers as advice to the young man. Gripping her wooden blade, she too charges forward, ready to find this Sapphire.

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

There are others, who have been drawn here - of course. Mikoto looks over the crowd, and relief floods her features as she sees her friends, still alive, still able to fight. The others she cares little for - but her fellow Shepherds, Fuu, Steven, and even the girl she doesn't yet know as Sourisi - these she are happy to see.

"Everyone's okay," Mikoto breathes, but it's only momentary relief, because the thing which has brought them here is that Gem she's passed - and she is terribly agitated.

Mikoto's eyes narrow as she grabs Steven, but - she doesn't seem to be hurting him. She's asking for help. Mikoto grunts, frowning deeply. She'd heard the ferocity that woman had called out to her with. Someone like that...

... she must be really important to her. Just like Miroku is to Mikoto.

So Mikoto nods, and follows her along her path. Deliberately, at first - and then quickly, quickly as the black crystal's effects are revealed. She sucks in a breath through grit teeth, because she's still hurt, she can't move as quickly as she should, she won't get there in time -

- and that darkness is not comforting or familiar at all.

<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [Infinity Institute (5)] has posed.

Fate Testarossa pulls up hard as they enter the middle of the chamber, braking in mid-air to hover. "Oh! Endo and Stern! I'm so glad you're both okay...!" But then she's staring wide eyed at the tiny gem as she rambles at a pace that's so hard to understand. Her eyes flit back and forth between Ruby and - the black light leaking from the cell.

Her mind makes a few connections at least - that the occupant was the one singing earlier.

And that the crystal in the cell is bad news for its occupant. It reminds her so much of Dark Fall's technology.

"It's like the field that was around the ship earlier."

Fate remarks wide-eyed - except while that was for protection... this one... while - Kasagami's bravado takes her off guard - she blurts out quickly to warn her, "This isn't the same thing that was holding us! It's more dangerous!"

Fate doesn't remark further - because she's started flying towards the cell. The Black Crystalline light of the cell's field beginning to reflect off Bardiche's axe-head as she comes closer - and closer...

<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (6)] has posed.

Steven hustles his best into the room clearing, and sees others coming "Hey--!"

Before he can even call out to his friends, he is suddenly gripped furiously by hands that are way too high temperature for their own good. "Ah! Hey, easy on the shirt!" the boy starts with. "Oh, she was the one singing! Right. We will find her! Don't worry."

The boy looks to all his friends. "Come on! We gotta find Sapphire! Then we strike back!" The boy does his best to keep up with Ruby. Even with her leading people she has fire to her step that makes her quite swift.

"Whaaaaat is that thing? That is new!" Steven points out. A crystal of black is wedged in that field of energy hedging in its azure captive. It looks wrong. Despite all the color being displayed everywhere from an unknown light source, the crystal is midnight black. No light dances on its foreign surface. He almost worries that opening a way might even be bad.

"We gotta get over there and do something!" The boy nods to Kasagami. Some others know how to manually open it, but that might take too long. "Has anyone here seen something like that before?!" he asks, as he begins to run toward the door.

<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"Steven! Um, everyone!"

The call of surprise comes from a witch in flowing black attire, green gloves and boots, holding a staff. But she looks to Ruby, too, practically feeling the anger rolling off of her--or maybe just the heat. Or--well--

Either way Yumi scampers along to try to get closer, rushing a little towards the assembling group. "Are we uh... getting..." She pauses. "Your friend then..." Ruby salutes and starts leading, and Yumi, her words sort of unimportant compared to coming action, nods and falls into step. She is not the fastest, of course, on foot, which lends her to being near the back of the group fairly quickly. The black light gives her a bad, bad feeling.

It gives her a chance to see her friends and otherwise, at least. The blackness is rising as they get closer--

"--There's got to be a way to--" She cuts off and mutters a word, gesturing up to her hat, and then takes off running with the others. "F-fine," she says belatedly to Mikoto, "Fine--"

She won't make it first, but maybe--

Fate calls it dangerous. Yumi can see that. Steven asks--"Some kind of dark magic, maybe!?"

<Pose Tracker> Sailor Mercury [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

With the others nearby, Sailor Mercury feels the source of the power is getting closer and closer and she looks back to the others, "What do you think could be-" Her words are interrupted as they step into another chamber of the ship and the first thing she can see is smoke... a lot of smoke. Then she spots the now familiar tiny girl pacing in circles, burning a hole into the floor of the ship.

Before Sailor Mercury has time to really take in the whole scene, Ruby runs off and she follows behind with the others trying to keep up. The sailor guardian can see the cell up ahead but she stops short when she notices the black light. The cell appears tainted with the power and the tiny Sapphire seems so small against it.

Allowing Kasagami to take the lead as they get closer to the cell, Mercury frowns at the sight but stays silent. The combination of powers... but why here? At this point, she can only speculate the reasons for it.

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

At Ruby's abrupt and urgent plea, the Wind Knight wonders, ever so briefly, if that cessation of singing was what set her gut to churning - the sudden absence of that continuous song. But there's no time to pursue the question further; whatever the bond between Ruby and Sapphire, she's not about to question it. They are Gems, but they were imprisoned here, so clearly they're no allies of the ship's masters.

And that spreading, encroaching blackness is stirring up *every* kind of bad feeling she thought it was possible to have, in addition to bringing back memories she'd sooner leave confined to her own worst nightmares. (Which, for an experienced magical girl, is saying something.)

The Wind Knight breaks into a run while taking stock of who all is gathered, seemingly all of the captives she remembers fighting alongside on the beach. As she runs, a piece of her wonders whether the force-field door is holding the shard back from whatever unholy work it's intended to accomplish; if so, then shutting the field off may be a worse decision - especially if done too soon - than trying to find a way through the raised field (which she doesn't yet realize Steven can potentially do).... but either way, she's sure that shard has to be contained somehow, possibly destroyed outright.

<Pose Tracker> La Sirene de Diamant [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

La Sirene de Diamant stalks forwards, trailing ethereal wisps of inverse light. Batiste flanks her. She moves with Cure Bloom and with the Lost Witch. She is a lot more intense right now.

She glanced along the way to the Mix Commune. "... is that Standard, or..?" she asks, perhaps about the device's origin.

Soon enough they are exposed to several things at once. "Oh good," Batiste says with relief, "that's Earth." La Sirene glances up, but the relatively thin cloud cover confirms it swiftly; she thinks she can make out Africa, or possibly Australia; anyway, continents.

But there is a greater problem right here. Ruby. La Sirene's eyes narrow, her brow furrows. "... What does that mean?" she says, before her lips thin at the proximity of some people who she is not terribly fond of at the moment. But as many a people in the margin have said, I against my sister, my sister and I against our cousin, and our cousins and I against the world.

A black crystal is stabbed into that cell door. "Ah! Batiste, is it," la Sirene begins, which gives the otter an opportunity to put his education to work.

"No," he says. "It is the wrong kind. This is another darkness, not the spectral lines of sorrow and storm. You remember that UFO, yes?" (La Sirene nods, after a second's recollection. It was on the other side of some more painful things, for her.)

After this, la Sirene (and Batiste) look towards Mercury and Fuu.

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

When they reach the source of the power, so does everyone else. After long hours of frantic running-and-hiding, of trying to maintain a low profile, it feels especially dangerous to be gathered and making so much noise. But there may be safety in so large a number. "This might be our best chance," Pluto says under her breath.

The seething ball of anger that is Ruby takes charge of the gathering. Pluto has no idea who Sapphire might be, but if the rest of the gathering is headed that way, she'll come along. This assembled mass of mahou power could be the key to getting free of the ship and back to Earth.

She meets Kassie's look and nods as their hands drop. Together they all run, after the charging, steaming Ruby and Steven Universe. The green force field gets a glance -- the black crystal, a look of horror through narrowed eyes. The Rod snaps up, brandished against the terrible black light.

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

As Sourisi rushes into this central nexus, magical girls and boys alike are also gathering in this most unlikely of places. The reason being a...completely red girl, her footsteps actually melting the nearly untouchable material before. Seeing everyone being freed and together, despite still being stuck on board the Gem Handship is a welcoming sight to the mouse martial artist.

Hearing Ruby mention that the singing has stopped has Sourisi blink in surprise before trying to listen to background noise. Always beforehand there was always the constant drone of someone softly singing in the background, but now, the space around them was completely silent.

For some reason, the realization has the heavy weight that is dread forming in her empty stomach, and fingers reach softly for tonfa.

When Ruby urges them to follow after her, Sourisi doesn't even think about questioning it. While this was a Gem she's never seen before, it's obvious she's in obvious distress and not one of those allied with the brute that killed-...no, best not to think of that.

Chasing after the others, even when her view is partially obstructed due to her height, Sourisi can instinctively tell something is wrong. The negative light coming from the cell looks so much like the dark field that formed around the Handship when the mouse magical girl got a too close of a look at it, and as she gets closer, it looks so much like another familiar and terrible sight.

An black spire that appeared to devour all light around it as the gravity from it pushes her into a beach.

With that mental image becoming clear in her still slightly hazy memories, Sourisi is quick to join the charge once more, but a gut feeling is preventing her from rushing in a dead run. "...something's not right. This is almost too easy..."

<Pose Tracker> Cure Bloom [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

"It's Flappy," Cure Bloom says to de Diamant, with a shrug. "Fairy...stuff. I have to use it to feed him, too, it's weird."

She makes good time with the Lost Witch and the Siren, feeling her body burning up with Pretty Cure power again. After that separation, it's almost strange to feel the strength of Pretty Cure fill her once more. Her lips curl back in a smile, and tears off into that central room, where she discovers--A SHORTY. A furious shorty. An extremely angry girl. Flappy mentioned hearing her bellowing earlier. Saki almost doesn't hear her yelling because her eyes are drawn up to the Earth, so far away. She finds herself trying to remember if anything she heard from Mai's dad would be relevant here. All that comes to mind is purple hair and--

She shakes her head sharply as Ruby's blazing eyes rake across her like coals. "...OK," she says, nodding. "Right. Not leaving anyone behind!" "That's a tall order-lapi..." "I know. But we have to figure it out anyway!"

Cure Bloom usually flies across long distances, but she runs this time, though with her strength, it's more like throwing herself than actually running. Long, flailing leaps that gobble up meters like chips. "Bloom-lapi! I sense something-lapi!"

Cure Bloom bites her lips as the blackness leaks around them. "This energy again," she mutters. "What is this stuff?"

"I don't know-lapi, but look!"

It's strange how Flappy is so expressive when the camera's not on him, but despite not having limbs right now he somehow he manages to indicate the corrupted cell door ahead. Cure Bloom's fist immediately starts gathering spiritual light. "Be careful-lapi! Remember last time-lapi!"

The light gutters. Cure Bloom remembers bouncing off a field of anti-light and slamming into the desert with force that nearly broke her completely. "...yeah," she mutters, fist balling with tension.

<Pose Tracker> Amethyst [None] has posed.

The gang's all here it seems! Some Amethyst knows, some she doesn't. There's of course Steven, being pulled by...

"Ruby!?" Amethyst is both excited and distressed to find her there. "Ohmygosh, Ruby, is that you? Haven't seen you in forever? I mean I have sort have seen-... I mean... yeah, in forever..." This last part seems a bit strained, as if she didn't entirely mean it. Of course, Ruby and Steven mention needing to find Sapphire. "Oh man... yeah we do! I can't believe they locked Ruby and Sapphire up sep-... no. Of course they would," Amethyst says darkly. "Don't worry, we'll get her back- After we deal with that!"

Amethyst points at the dark crystal and its horrible inky energy. "That can't be good." She summons her whip from her jewel, ready to try to free the prisoner. "Is that...?"

COMBAT: Amethyst transforms into Amethyst Plus Whips!
COMBAT: Steven Universe transforms into Steven Quartz Universe!
<Pose Tracker> Hotaru Tomoe [Infinity Institute (7)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> PERIBOT https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLrTP2YlM3s

Ruby, as promised, is pretty nonresponsive. She just lowers her head and charges. But then--

"NYEH HEH HEH HEH," cackles Peridot, who emerges from an alcove between the group and Sapphire with a mechanical CRASH.

That's because she's inside a ROBONOIDBOT. It's like a robot, but it seems to be made entirely out of robonoids.

Also there are a lot of robonoids with her.

And from the ceiling, panels retract and out sprout an embankment of what any sci-fi fan can tell you are laser turrets. Only the lasers' focal points -- more of that black crystal sets it apart from the sort of technology all over the ship.

"It's only a matter of time now before she breaks -- but she's already served a greater purpose -- I knew that if I could shut up her SINGING it would bring you all right to ME! When Jasper gets back and sees that I settled this ridiculous chaos, maybe she'll finally LISTEN to me and we can go CHECK on the CLUSTER and IN CONCLUSION:"

Everyone gets a split second of warning as the sound of charging power rises, a dangerous hum.

"DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE!!" She mashes the buttons of her turret controller like an arcade enthusiast.

Black laser beams everywhere. The robonoids flood into the hallway like it's a ball pit. Peridot hangs back by the cell: it's obvious that to rescue Sapphire, they'll have to take care of her, and all of this, first.

Sapphire herself is difficult to see, behind her small army of captors, her cell door, and the still-crackling black energy gradually approaching her, crossing the cell floor inch by inch; she seems to be sheathed in a pillar of ice. Familiar ice -- the stuff that provided sustenance to all the humans in the cells.

"AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!" screams Ruby, erupting towards the Peridotbot like a rocket.

She is immediately buried beneath the oncoming tsunami of robonoids. Well, she isn't very tall (even by small human standards; she's shorter than anyone else here).

COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe transforms into Peridot, Robonoids, and Turrets!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Amethyst.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Cure Bloom.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Sourisi.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Sailor Pluto.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on La Sirene de Diamant.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Fuu Hououji.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Sailor Mercury.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Yumi Ohzora.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Steven Universe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Fate Testarossa.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Mikoto Minagi.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Kasagami Araki.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Endo Naoki.
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa partially dodges 4 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 18 Fatigue damage!
Critical Hit!  Fate Testarossa's Fade and Flash abilities activate!
COMBAT: Mikoto Minagi fails to dodge Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 18 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Sourisi partially dodges 4 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 14 Fatigue damage!  Sourisi's
Fade and Flash abilities activate!
COMBAT: Yumi Ohzora braces 9 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 13 Fatigue damage!  Yumi Ohzora's
Block and Parry abilities activate!
COMBAT: Amethyst partially dodges 4 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 14 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: La Sirene de Diamant counters 10 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 10 Fatigue damage!
Critical Hit!  La Sirene de Diamant's Reverse and Tactician abilities activate!
COMBAT: La Sirene de Diamant's counterattack, Les Mysteres, partially gets through, doing 21 Fatigue damage to Hotaru Tomoe!
Critical Counterhit!
COMBAT: Sailor Mercury fails to dodge Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 28 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
COMBAT: Sailor Pluto partially dodges 5 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 19 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Steven Universe braces 8 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 12 Fatigue damage!  Steven
Universe's Block and Parry abilities activate!
COMBAT: Cure Bloom dodges 6 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 9 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji braces 10 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 15 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
Fuu Hououji's Block and Parry abilities activate!
COMBAT: Endo Naoki counters 7 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 21 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
Endo Naoki's Reverse and Tactician abilities activate!
COMBAT: Endo Naoki's counterattack, Asteroid Eilen, partially gets through, doing 11 Fatigue damage to Hotaru Tomoe!
COMBAT: Kasagami Araki braces 10 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 8 Fatigue damage!
<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (6)] has posed.

Steven hurries as fast as he can toward Sapphire to free her, but stops by skidding to a halt and almost tripping. "Uh. Hi Peridot," the boy says, waving a little hand. He is in a bad spot right now. Right up front. The boy takes a loooong and deep breath, before the inevitable spray of lasers, summoning his shield and bringing it up to block the utter lightshow that are turret lasers flying all about. Well, a goth laser show anyway. Way too much black. Needs more purple.

A laser or two clip him, burning bits of his shirt away and searing a calf rather badly, but most of the lasers are deflected. "We gotta stop her!" He looks back to the group. "I know some of you got lasers! Laser those turrets better!"

He looks back to the fray. "Amethyst, we gotta save Ruby!" The boy motions at Amethyst, and provides blocking cover to close the gap betwen them at the tidal wave of goofy robot marbles.

Once there, he begins to attack as many as he can to try and get them off her!

COMBAT: Steven Universe has used Shield Bash on Hotaru Tomoe.
<Pose Tracker> Amethyst [None] has posed.

PERIDOT. Of course she'd have some insane trap with annoying robonoids lined up for them. Why didn't Amethyst see this coming? "You looking for a beating? Because you found one!"

Before the beating could commence, a ton of bad things happened. Ruby was covered with Robonoids, Peridot blasted everyone with black lasers, and Amethyst failed to dodge out of the way, being clipped by a couple. "That's it," She growls, ready to attack. However, Steven wants her to save Ruby, and that's more important. "On it!" She curls up into a ball and suddenly she's gotta go fast. She becomes a purple blur, spinning in place before rocketing off towards a bunch of those round robos attacking Ruby.

COMBAT: Amethyst has used Spinball on Hotaru Tomoe.
<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [Infinity Institute (5)] has posed.

Fate has a lot new sensory input to take in all at once. First off - PERIDOT - SECOND off - ROBONOIDBOT - Third off - BLACK CRYSTAL LASERS - And fourth off - DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE!

Fate gasps, and breaks off into a weaving flight through the hailstorm of black crystal lasers.

The girl zips this one way - and then another, weaving in and out of the lasers. Before corkscrewing to the side. A beam burns the tip of a twintail - while another scores a gauntlet. And another slams into her shoulder - or at least would have before her auto-protection spells flare to life.

"Hnngh!" The girl grits her teeth and tries to work through the pain, her flight slowing from the impact.

BGM Change: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TsZ4tKgEOqk

"I don't know what the cluster is but-"

Fate spins in a mid-air pivot, whirling around like a top in a spinning charge - before abruptly raising her polearm overhead with two hands. <Cartridge Load.>

The cylinder pounds in one - as the obsidian poleaxe becomes alit by gold mana that feels like a living thing. Slamming it down hard in a two handed overhand strike at the throng of Robonoids - a huge shockwave that resounds with booming thunder rippling through them.

There's a shift in intensity to her voice afterwards, "- nothing about it can be important enough to justify torturing that girl!"

There are many things she's angry about for all of this. Garnet's death - her imprisonment. Every indignity that they've suffered. But right now her priority is making whatever Peridot is doing to try to break Sapphire stop. "You - stop what you're doing to her - RIGHT NOW!" Peridot may not find it particularly intimidating given how many cards she holds but right now - this girl is definitely angry.

<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Yumi skids to a stop when she hears laughter and... stares at the robonid bot. Then at Peridot. Then at the panels. "Um... That's not... great..."

A black cat scurries out of the main hallway to stand about Yumi's ankles. "Cluster...?" Tama asks the question thoughtfully, sharply--but then abrubtly--

"Aah--!" Yumi blinks and throws out a hand by instinct, green power bursting into a thin disc etched with phantom inscriptions, which takes the black laser head-on--and then the impact of blocking it knocks the young witch backward, sending her right against the wall with a loud noise. "Ow..."

Tama rushes to Yumi's side, "Don't get close to her--there's no telling what'll happen if you're captured again!"

"Hey--" She looks worriedly at where Ruby was... and then bites her lip. "Ruby...?" They have to save her, Steven says. "Right--" Yumi narrows her pink eyes, and throws out a leather-gloved hand, palm first. "...Let's see how you like being tied up," she murmurs, and traces a set of runes--

Before with a snap of her hand, and in a flash of green light spectral ivy starts growing out of the floor up the ship, vines shooting up to try to ensnare Peridot.

"Ivy Binding!" A breath, "I'm with you, Steven!" Then she pulls her phone a little awkwardly, starting to tap away on it. ...Now????

COMBAT: Yumi Ohzora has used Ivy Binding on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has used Thunderous Clash on Hotaru Tomoe.
<Pose Tracker> Mikoto Minagi [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Mikoto spares a nod, to Yumi, as they run. It's concerned, though that concern is hedged in her harsh expression. "Glad Yumi's okay."

She's also worried to see Yumi here, when she last saw Yumi in hospital. But there's no time to think about that, because -

- suddenly -

- that annoying technician appears. Mikoto's lips curl up as she snarls. Of course she's in a robot. Made of... robots. That woman couldn't fight them on her own if she tried. Using technology like that is just...

Really, really annoying. Peridot is incredibly annoying.

She calls for their death, volleys a barrage of dark lasers towards them all. Mikoto, on instinct, leaps away - but even with the advance warning of the hum, she is still a little too slow, still a little too injured, and she doesn't want to run into anyone she cares about. Together, it means Mikoto is caught by that laser, and she staggers as she lands, gritting her teeth.

It's as unpleasant as it felt when it countered her deathblow on the ship which wasn't quite a hand.

Mikoto hisses a breath through those teeth, glaring at the robonoid armour. Peridot wants to hide? Fine. She'll cut through. She does not have lasers, as Steven requests; what she does have is a very large, very angry claymore. She screams a wordless challenge as she charges, Miroku streaming sparks as Mikoto runs right for the mechanical monstrosity. The others can save the small woman. Her overwhelming force is terribly ill-suited to rescue.

In the face of the robot, she plants her feet, swinging Miroku diagonally upwards with her momentum. She's aiming to cut right through the supports of her gestalt robonoid.

What was that Peridot said? DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE?

Mikoto might say similar, if she had any words at all. Instead, her scream is bloodcurling and utterly formless.

COMBAT: Mikoto Minagi has used Obsidian Blade: Devastation on Hotaru Tomoe.
<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

"Winds of Protection!!!" the Magic Knight of Wind calls out, practically *before* the turrets and robonoids erupt into the kind of deadly tidal wave that would make ZUN himself, along with most of the staff at Cave, reach for clean underwear. Her conjured barrier of wind cuts down on how much of the onslaught gets through, but she still takes an unpleasantly high number of hits. Thankfully, so far, they're all from the lasers.

.... okay, that's really not something to be thankful for, but she still has sufficiently bad memories of the Robonoids to be glad she isn't getting swarmed by them. Yet. That will, no doubt, follow shortly.

And speaking of short, Ruby seems to have gotten herself buried. Which is a source of some major concern - she was the one who got them this far and is absolutely dead set on rescuing Sapphire - but taking too long to consider how to help will lead the Wind Knight to getting swarmed as well, which is as unacceptable as anything else about Peridot's ambush. On the plus side, with this many Robonoids in the way, she *probably* doesn't need to worry too much about stray friendly fire .... yet.

"STORM-DANCE OF KAMAITACHI!!" are the Wind Knight's next words, conjuring a rending whirlwind and flinging it ahead of her - keeping it tightly focused at first, to get it past Steven and Amethyst, and any other melee-focused allies (like Mikoto and Endo) ... but once it's past the magical girls' front line, the whirlwind widens and strengthens, trying to shred through any Robonoids too close - and if her spell manages to hurl any of them into the turrets overhead, the Wind Knight surely can't think of any reason why she *shouldn't*.

COMBAT: Fuu Hououji has used Storm-Dance of Kamaitachi on Hotaru Tomoe.
<Pose Tracker> Sourisi [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Sourisi's gut instincts about something not being right are proven true as the green Gem, the one that caused the Handship to fire upon them back at the beach, appears to block their path!

The fact she is inside a giant robot suit made out of what looked to be hundred of the goop robots is a little silly if it wasn't for the fact she was obviously planning on attacking the group of magical warriors.

Pulling her tonfa free of their clasps, Sourisi spins the familiar hardwood around in her grip as she gets closer, readying herself for battle actually looking forward to doing battle with one of their captors.

"Wait, Cluster? I remember her complaining about that earl-whao!" Her pondering cuts short as Peridot slams down on the triggers of her controller, turrets popping out of the ceiling to fire down upon them as if she was blasting down a firing range.

In a dark way, she was.

Even when mentally preparing herself to dodge, the speed of the lasers being fired as well as the sheer number of lasers blasting down does not leave the magical girl unscathed, narrowly avoiding several bolts to the shoulders only to receive a blast to her calf, tearing through the bodysuit and showing bruising skin underneeth.

Hissing from the pain but only driven onwards, Sourisi thrusts her tonfa as she charges into the rolling mass of robonoids. She trust the other magical girls and boys to focus on the turrets, as she's certain wooden tonfa doesn't trump laser turret. "Sorry, dieing isn't on the schedule today. It's already full with escaping from this madhouse you call a ship!"

COMBAT: Sourisi has used Mouse Flurry on Hotaru Tomoe.
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Mercury [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Sailor Mercury is, for a moment, thankful that they are all together right now. With the combination of their magical powers maybe they can throw off whatever is going to happen next. By the time they are approaching Sapphire's cell, Mercury gets a glimpse of something only a split second before the cackling form of Peridot appears and crashes in front of them.

There are more robonoids than she has ever come face to face with before. Immediately she is on the defensive as Peridot explains her plan, because really what kind of enemy would she be if she didn't explain it, but Mercury frowns at the realization. "So it was all a trap to begin with..." She says to no one in particular.

Then the turrets appear and begin charging up. Before she can make any kind of dash for safety they begin firing. With so much fire power being brought upon the group, Mercury finds it hard to know which way to move without putting someone else in danger.

The lasers from the turrets are almost impossible to dodge and she feels the black beams hit her. Taking a hit from the side she goes down hard into the cold floor of the ship, wincing in response but she is not deterred, knowing that they need to stop the lasers.

"Double Sabao Sprayyyy!" Mercury crosses her hands and blue water bubbles appear. As they are thrown across the room, each one aims for a different turret, upon explosion she is hoping they will, at least temporarily, freeze the turrets allowing them to focus more on the gunner herself and of course the robonoid pit that has swallowed Ruby!

COMBAT: Sailor Mercury has used Double Sabao Spray Freezing on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe braces 5 Fatigue damage from Steven Universe's Shield Bash, taking 2 Fatigue damage!  Steven Universe is
<Pose Tracker> La Sirene de Diamant [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.


Or should we say Peribot? The arrival of the green Gem and the swarming horde of Robonoids makes la Sirene's empty stomach clench. She feels cold even as the glittering black rays begin lancing out. Batiste leaps to her shoulder for safety, and she steps back.

What Peridot says resonates with her in unusual ways. Singing. Bringing them here. Checking on 'the cluster'. Die. Die. Die. Die.

La Sirene breathes in deep... her vision feels like it blurs a little, that same touch of a skipping film for a moment. Even as

I know some of you got lasers!

Did I hear that or read that? la Sirene thinks, even as her left hand makes a familiar gesture. But she twists it upwards as she breathes out the words, "les mysteres," and the burst of silver-and-black light rises up above her, at a leisurely pace.

"No," she tells Peridot. "No; nobody else dies." Her head tilts back...

The charm of Les Mysteres had been flying, with some leisure, towards a turret. The sphere of coalesced light unravels suddenly, pouring outwards, as if destroyed by a laser. Except that the silver is forming something like a mirrored, refractive ribbon storm, sparkling above la Sirene's head.

She tilts her head back down to look towards Peridot. "Do you think to drown us in the bodies of your minions?" Her hand passes before her face. The black that had been in the charm is the living abyssal inverse light she is often limned with. It passes over her, pools like ink deep enough to veil the soles of her shoes. It slides outwards...

The others are going for Peridot. The puddle of light from la Sirene does nothing until it rises up like fan worms and fabulous denizens of the hadal depths of the heart, to engulf and grasp and sunder Robonoids. How many Robonoids? How many she's got.

"My friend is dead," la Sirene says, voice wavering as the living sparks and polyps of light spread out from her. "Your Jasper killed her - but she couldn't kill me. Are people only pieces to you, machines to further your goals?"

COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe perfectly dodges 22 Fatigue damage from Amethyst's Spinball, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Dodge!
Hotaru Tomoe's Fade and Flash abilities activate!
COMBAT: La Sirene de Diamant has used Polyploia on Hotaru Tomoe.
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Pluto [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

The grumpish green Gem crashes in between them and the cell, all shrill exultation amidst a tide of robots. It's an ambush. Of course. The thought grates. Sailor Pluto flings herself sideways as black crystals extrude wicked black light at all angles, but it's not enough to avoid getting tagged in the elbow by a laser. That hand spasms and redoubles its grip on the Rod. She doesn't examine what feels like a nasty scorch mark -- the arm still works, the rest can wait.

Steven Universe calls out battle direction and it's an absolutely agreeable one to the Guardian of Time. Those turrets need dealt with. She trusts the others to handle themselves, can't spare a glance for the allies she knows are in the crowd with her.

Ignoring the pain in her elbow she swings the Garnet Rod clockwise in a great circle by her side, and around the Orb coruscating violet energy gathers. It trails the motion, gleaming darkly. "Whatever you have planned..."

With a swoop and a hiss of energy Pluto thrusts the weapon forward and releases the blast to rocket toward a ceiling turret.

"...We will disrupt it, and win our freedom! You made a terrible mistake, taking us prisoner." There's an edge to the Guardian's voice, roughened with exhaustion and the strains of confinement.

<Pose Tracker> Cure Bloom [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Cure Bloom tries to cover the last few meters of distance, only to hear the most annoying chuckle in the world! Well. No. That's Kenta. Number two, though!!

"It's you again!" Cure Bloom yelps, powers gathering anew. THIS she knows how to deal with. She's about to speak, but Peridot rolls right over her verbally, and then attempts to roll over her metaphorically, which is to say, kill her with lasers.

She leaps back and to the side, the fusillade managing to skirt around the galumphing Precure. She hits on her shoes, skidding backward a few meters before regaining her balance. Steven calls for lasers. She doesn't have those. Her eyes flash to Ivy, then to the Siren, nodding to both. "I'll go in close!" she says. It's not really an option, since Cure Bloom's ability to project energy is weak.

"What's this Cluster thing-lapi..." Flappy murmurs.

Cure Bloom mustly says, "aaaaAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!" as she bullets upward and tries to punch a turret to junk.

COMBAT: Sailor Pluto has used Garnet Blast on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Cure Bloom has used Fistful of Flowers on Hotaru Tomoe.
<Pose Tracker> Endo Naoki [Juuban Public School (12)] has posed.

"Fate! You're okay!" Endo has time to offer this, hand making a quick wave as he follows after Ruby.

He's still running headlong forward when the turrets pop from the ceilings and the robonoids begin spilling into the hallway. He doesn't really stop running either, his fingers only tightening around his sword as he charges headfirst into the fray. This is more his element than anything else, even if it is terrible and frightening.

It does not go as well as he might have imagined, though. His sword is pointed forward as he launches toward the mass of enemies, but the dark metal doesn't save him from the even blacker energy beams that graze past him. Nor does it smash through more than one or two robonoids, a paltry sum compared to the mass of robots that pile atop him.

He lets out a cry of effort as he strikes back, sweeping his sword across the nearby robonoids, attempting to cut some breathing room for himself as he tries to regain his balance.

COMBAT: Endo Naoki has used Blauverschiebung on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe braces 9 Fatigue damage from Yumi Ohzora's Ivy Binding, taking 4 Fatigue damage!  Stun applied to Hotaru
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe perfectly dodges 20 Fatigue damage from Fate Testarossa's Thunderous Clash, taking 0 Fatigue damage!
Critical Dodge!  Hotaru Tomoe's Fade and Flash abilities activate!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe braces 16 Fatigue damage from Mikoto Minagi's Obsidian Blade: Devastation, taking 7 Fatigue damage!  Mikoto
Minagi is Psyched!  Stagger applied to Hotaru Tomoe!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe fails to dodge Fuu Hououji's Storm-Dance of Kamaitachi, taking 37 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe perfectly dodges 42 Fatigue damage from Sourisi's Mouse Flurry, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
Critical Dodge!  Hotaru Tomoe's Fade and Flash abilities activate!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe braces 31 Fatigue damage from Sailor Mercury's Double Sabao Spray Freezing, taking 25 Fatigue damage!
Critical Hit!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe dodges 13 Fatigue damage from La Sirene de Diamant's Polyploia, taking 20 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
Hotaru Tomoe's Fade and Flash abilities activate!  Trap applied to Hotaru Tomoe!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe braces 10 Fatigue damage from Sailor Pluto's Garnet Blast, taking 8 Fatigue damage!  Sailor Pluto is Psyched!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe neatly dodges 16 Fatigue damage from Cure Bloom's Fistful of Flowers, taking 4 Fatigue damage!  Cure Bloom is
Psyched!  Hotaru Tomoe's Fade and Flash abilities activate!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe fails to brace Endo Naoki's Blauverschiebung, taking 30 Fatigue damage!  Endo Naoki is Psyched!
<Pose Tracker> Kasagami Araki [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Never let it be said that Kassie can't occasionally listen. Even to an enemy. Oh yes, she remembers that field well, and her brow twitches.

"I guess we really do need to be careful then." It annoys her to say that out loud, but she really does want to get out of here. With those she loves in one piece, at that!

Steven wants to find the Gem. That's so very Steven.

A giant robot made of robonoids. A large amount of more robonoids. And enough lasers to choke several elephants. Ruby, luckily, is Ruby and crashes forward. Peridot mentions a 'Cluster', and Kassie tucks that little noun in the back of her head for later. There are, after all, more pressing concerns.

Her sword flashes. Kasagami Araki spin, turns, parries and blocks oncoming black lasers, but there's simply too many and too little room what with so many allies around her. Several blasts tear into her jeans, across her right arm, blackening the wood of her training sword and even nipping out bits of crimson-tipped black locks. The smell of sizzling cloth and her own pained grunts through gritted teeth forces the Duelist to concentrate.

Though forced several steps back from the powerful barrage, Kasagami slams down one boot and pushes forward again. Her sword flashes through the air defensively a few times, only now it's with one hand. Her other digs into the rose-petal coat formed over her shoulders. Her left hand yanks out a dozen deadly points, her gaze shifts skywards, and then she chucks those rose-coated daggers towards the ceiling lasers that are peppering them all with those baleful black laser blasts!

COMBAT: Kasagami Araki has used Thorns of the Bloody Rose on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe partially dodges 5 Fatigue damage from Kasagami Araki's Thorns of the Bloody Rose, taking 19 Fatigue damage!
Hotaru Tomoe's Fade and Flash abilities activate!
<Pose Tracker> Hotaru Tomoe [Infinity Institute (7)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> I Think It's Time We Blow This Scene, Get Everybody And The Stuff Together https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2rVnRwW0h8

Peridot may claim to be an enemy of chaos, but it's undeniably the case that she has just created it, and dramatically so.

"Not if I beat you first!" she yells back at Amethyst. "And I've lost enough time to your interferences already!"


As usual, the sea of robonoids are obnoxiously fast. Steven and Amethyst are collectively able to uncover Ruby -- he starts bashing them off her, and then they flee collectively from those whips -- straight towards Fate, where they halt with an almost audible screech and then turn in another direction and flee again -- straight into Fuu's whirlwind.

Lest we forget what happens to robonoids when they're destroyed, the GOOP is a good reminder. There's a lot of it now, because she just shredded an immense quantity.

Unfortunately for the collective, there is an even more immense quantity at hand...

The next wave balks at Sourisi's charge, parting around her to spoo more GOOP at her from both directions, only to get grabbed by La Sirene's unlight and then, while they're held nicely still, crushed by the passage of Fallen Stern.

More GOOP cometh.

Peridot blinks at her momentarily robonoidless hallway, and stomps a foot (made out of robonoids, so maybe there are some left) of


"HUH?!" Accusations of murder don't seem to register with Peridot. Maybe she just doesn't see people as, well, people. There is something in the mass of words being thrown at her that she can process, though.

"I agree completely!" she yells back at Sailor Pluto, as to the mistake of taking all these prisoners. "If I were in charge we never would have abducted any of you!" Her complex hands, which appear to be composed of separate, floating segments, compose a symphony across the keys of her Peribot Control Panel, which brings up a humming sheet of energy just in time to take the oncoming hit from Miroku, not dissimilarly from how the UFO took hits, but without that sense of taint. It vibrates melodiously on impact, gong-like. Yumi's vines curl around it, but are unable to penetrate it to get to the pilot.

"HEY!" Frowning behind her visor, Peridot taps some keys and one of the Peribot's hands expands to reveal a massive destabilizer. Mecha-scale. "TIME OUT!"

It comes down in a tremendous smash, crackling the air on its way towards Mikoto. Also crackling the air:


But it happens somewhat less as they are alternately frozen, energy blasted, punched and knifed. It helps that they're surprisingly wiggly -- Peridot must be controlling them with her TOES somehow, the way they jerk their barrels out of the way -- and also, perhaps less surprisingly given the black crystal involved, they're exceedingly tough. Still, between everyone's efforts, one (of the three) goes down, creating a brief lightning storm of very dark energy, indeed.

As though almost sentient, it coalesces into a lightning ball, then launches directly towards the nearest target, Cure Bloom (the only one to get up close and personal enough to punch).

The Peribot's other hand, meanwhile, gapes wide and emits


And by 'emit' we mean 'shoot at dangerous speeds', though really, everyone here knows that they're unsafe at any.

COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on Steven Universe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on Amethyst.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on Fate Testarossa.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on Fuu Hououji.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on Sourisi.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on La Sirene de Diamant.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on Endo Naoki.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Industrial Grade Destabilizer on Mikoto Minagi.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Backlash on Cure Bloom.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Bowling With Robonoids on Yumi Ohzora.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Bowling With Robonoids on Sailor Mercury.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Bowling With Robonoids on Sailor Pluto.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Bowling With Robonoids on Kasagami Araki.
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji fails to dodge Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 20 Fatigue damage!  Trap applied to Fuu Hououji!
COMBAT: Steven Universe dodges 9 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 14 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Tangle and
Trap applied to Steven Universe!
COMBAT: Sailor Pluto braces 21 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Bowling With Robonoids, taking 9 Fatigue damage!  Sailor Pluto's
Block and Parry abilities activate!
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa perfectly counters 20 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical
Counter!  Fate Testarossa's Reverse and Tactician abilities activate!
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa's counterattack, Blitz Rush, interrupts, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Hotaru Tomoe!
COMBAT: Endo Naoki braces 10 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 8 Fatigue damage!  Endo Naoki's Block and Parry
abilities activate!  Tangle and Trap applied to Endo Naoki!
COMBAT: Amethyst braces 14 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 6 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Amethyst's Block and
Parry abilities activate!  Tangle applied to Amethyst!
COMBAT: Yumi Ohzora decisively counters 24 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Bowling With Robonoids, taking 8 Fatigue damage!
Yumi Ohzora's Reverse and Tactician abilities activate!
COMBAT: Yumi Ohzora's counterattack, Witch's Mirror, partially gets through, doing 28 Fatigue damage to Hotaru Tomoe!  Critical
COMBAT: Kasagami Araki perfectly dodges 33 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Bowling With Robonoids, taking 0 Fatigue damage!
Critical Dodge!  Kasagami Araki's Fade and Flash abilities activate!
COMBAT: Cure Bloom cleanly braces 34 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Backlash, taking 6 Fatigue damage!  Cure
Bloom's Block ability activates!
COMBAT: Sailor Mercury cleanly braces 23 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Bowling With Robonoids, taking 4 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: La Sirene de Diamant partially dodges 4 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 14 Fatigue damage!  Tangle and
Trap applied to La Sirene de Diamant!
COMBAT: Steven Universe covers Mikoto Minagi for Hotaru Tomoe's attack, Industrial Grade Destabilizer, taking it upon himself
COMBAT: Sourisi counters 7 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 20 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Tangle applied to
COMBAT: Sourisi's counterattack, Feral Flail, partially gets through, doing 3 Fatigue damage to Hotaru Tomoe!
COMBAT: Steven Universe cleanly braces 28 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Industrial Grade Destabilizer, taking 5 Fatigue
damage!  Steven Universe's Block and Parry abilities activate!
<Pose Tracker> Mikoto Minagi [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Sometimes, there are simple solutions to simple problems. There's a woman in a robonoid gestalt: get rid of the gestalt. She does not look sturdy, on her own; she should be easy to kill once she's removed from her assistants.

Miroku bites into a shield like that of the ship; it's almost melodious. The blade bounces back, and Mikoto is taken with it, because she won't let go of it again. One step, two -

... but sometimes, there are simple solutions to simple problems. There's a screaming berserker coming towards Peridot, and she reveals something horrifying in her hand.

- and when Mikoto completes her turn, she's staring into the face of a destabiliser, again. But this is not a prod, like Jasper thrust into her heart. This is huge, a thing designed to take down other gigantic robots, not girls. Her eyes narrow to pinpricks, her breath shallowing and catching in her throat.

RUN screams her heart but she is frozen, FIGHT screams her heart but she cannot move at all. She feels faint, but she's still standing. Her heart hammers in her chest, pounding out a desperate beat, screaming at her to move. Her breath comes in small, panicked gasps, because all she can feel staring down that weapon is the pain she's felt, the loneliness, the suffering.

Not again. Not again. Not again...

<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [Infinity Institute (5)] has posed.

By now she well understands the result of attacking Robonoids is that catching the ire of Robonoids is GOOP will be shot. And so it comes. GOOP But - <Blitz Rush.> The girl becomes a golden line that moves across the corridor with a path not too unlike a pinball. Though she never strikes the sides. That's just an illusion of her high rate of movement.

Mercifully Bardiche spares her the ignoble fate of getting that all over her long hair.

Appearing out of her strobing path again - she gawks at the size of that massive destabilizer. "Oh no. Oh no."

Fate knew what it was like to be helpless more than most people. The way her pupils dilate right away - she's definitely terrified of it happening again.

But it's coming right towards Mikoto - after she'd seen the girl in battle - on any other day this might actually be desirable. But right now - "Look out!"

And then the girl juts forth a gauntleted hand. A runic circle forming in front of it. <Lightning Bind>

Suddenly translucent cubes of gold try to surround both Peribot and the turrets as it attempts to encase them in solidifying bonds of magical energy to try to hinder their movement.

At least in theory. In practice it's a lot harder to keep something that size - and powerful - and so many turrets from moving.

"I'm afraid to even touch it! Does anyone have any ideas on how to stop that thing!?"

She must mean the Destabilizer.

"Sailor Mercury? Sailor Pluto? Steven!?"

COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has used Lightning Bind on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe counters 7 Fatigue damage from Fate Testarossa's Lightning Bind, taking 7 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
Stun applied to Hotaru Tomoe!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe's counterattack, PERINOPE, partially gets through, doing 18 Fatigue damage to Fate Testarossa!
<Pose Tracker> Amethyst [None] has posed.

Teamwork was a powerful force. Turrets and robonoids were getting wrecked left and right! Amethyst stops spinning and fistpumps. "Yes!" Then she is covered in goo. "No! These things are unbelievably juicy!" She wipes a bunch of the goo off, but she can tell she is going to be a lot slower for a bit. At least they are winning, right?

Then a crazy huge Destabilizer greets the group. This... could be a problem. Unfortunately, Amethyst wasn't in the position to do much about it. Instead, she focuses on cleaning up the mess - and by that she means making even more of one. She pushes up into the air, jumping really high, right over some of the Robonoids. She then morphs into a... giant anvil? Cartoon hijinks ensue.

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

That really is a lot of Robonoids, intact or (increasingly) otherwise - and the wave of goop unleashed by their destruction reminds the Wind Knight of why she was so very, *very* keen on avoiding combat with them entirely. She tries to leap clear; she doesn't entirely fail - but she doesn't cleanly succeed, either, and she hits the floor hard enough to get stuck with more than just her boots.

She's not the only one, either. Out of the corner of her eye, she sees Endo getting stuck in place; more directly ahead, she sees the goop overtaking Steven - however briefly, perhaps, but with this gunk, 'briefly' becomes a lasting situation. She can't afford to let the goop set and adhere, either -

"Winds of Healing!!!"

The ferocity in her voice would fit an attack spell better than the healing magic she's invoking, but the recuperative breeze gusts with greater energy for it - practically blowing the goop off of her before it can dry into ensnaring her, as well as mending some of her lesser injuries thus far. The same effect enfolds Steven and Endo in the next moment, liberating them from the goop and giving them back their full freedom of movement while the Wind Knight leaps back to her feet.

As for that giant economy-size Destabilizer ... she has a thought, but putting it into effect will take more than a simple spell-casting. Quite a bit more, really ...

COMBAT: Fuu Hououji has used Winds of Healing on Fuu Hououji.
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji has used Winds of Healing on Steven Universe.
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji has used Winds of Healing on Endo Naoki.
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji accepts Fuu Hououji's Winds of Healing, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Cleanse! All of Fuu Hououji's
debuffs are cleared!
COMBAT: Steven Universe accepts Fuu Hououji's Winds of Healing, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Cleanse! All of Steven
Universe's debuffs are cleared!
COMBAT: Endo Naoki accepts Fuu Hououji's Winds of Healing, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Cleanse! All of Endo Naoki's
debuffs are cleared!
<Pose Tracker> Sourisi [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

Being gooped back on Earth was not a pleasant experience, the azure material finding its' way everywhere and taking forever to remove. Being gooped in space is worse when you're being gooped on all sides. Unfortunately for the Miraculous user, she's quickly splattered head to toe by blobs of GOOP and looks more like an light blue wax figure after all is said and done. Her strugging around while getting blasted seemed to have knocked one of the robonoids off balance at least!

You have to take the small victories when you can.

Seeing the massive destabilizer becoming visible and swinging down at Mikoto and Steven sends a sudden surge of fear as she remembers just how dangerous the touch is, and she whimpers as she tries to free herself.

Getting hit by that thing is not an experience is not something Sourisi wants to experience again, ever.

The goop is just too much to break out of with her hands occupied, however, but at least she isn't immediately being targeted by any more incoming robonoids. Looking upwards at the two remaining turrets gives the azure mouse girl an idea, and she hurls her surprisingly clean twin tonfa upwards at the housing of the nearest turret. Maybe lasers beat tonfa, but gravity can beat lasers, right?! "I think we need to turn off this light show!"

That, and Sourisi can start scooping the goop off of her, and maybe be able to walk without looking like she's been dunked in wax.

COMBAT: Sourisi has used Crashing Tooth on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Amethyst has used ACME ATTACK on Hotaru Tomoe.
<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (6)] has posed.

Steven passes a nod toward Yumi as the combat begins in earnest. This is their shot of escaping! If they can't do anything here, then they'd never escape this place. This concentrated effort was their best shot! "Can't say I have heard of that, either!" the boy calls toward Fate and Sourisi. It sounds like what a Gem might call a base to him. Possibly an abandoned base on Earth. One they intend to start running again. In the throes of battle, it is hard to concentrate on any single thought for too long, lest he become a liability.

La Sirene's words, mentionign the fate of Garnet, makes Steven angry. They did do that! He let it pass into the back of his mind with their own fates at stake-- but it happened. Garnet was defeated in one fell swipe of a dark weapon. The boy begins to lay into the little robots with furor and gusto.

Watching this teamwork take place is uplifting. The boy can tell some here do no get along, yet for a singular goal to save themselves and prevent the terrible future they were to face, they stand side by side and strike out at their captors. Especially ones looking to harm that person in the cage! She looks so innocent and serene!

"We got you!" Steven says, clearing the way of what he can for Ruby. Not that she retreats to a safe spot. The robonoids flee right into magical spells and attacks, and splort everywhere. "Yuuuuck," the boy grimmaces, as more of that teal tinted sealant gets all over him, making it rather hard to shift around. He looks toward the Peribot... and sees it.

"Look out!!!" Steven yells toward Mikoto, running as fast as he can despite the goop upon him. It hinders his movement... but he has to try and get there! If only--

A familiar sensation surrounds the boy as the goop on him seems to disintegrate, or turn to dust or something. A powerful healing wind has come to his aid. A look of thanks is given toward Fuu. Rushing toward the fight, Steven interposes himself in front of Mikoto, and raises that shield, his mother's shield, which brunts against the prongs of the device. That golden geometic-looking effect crosses all over Steven. "Gr-r-r-ra-a-a-ah-h-h!" The boy cries out. His shield disappears mid-block, and the boy has to tussle with it with his spare hand, receiving a nasty shock. The child shoves it away, and when the shocking effect disappears, he resummons a shield after a moment or two later. In retrubution, Steven goes on the offensive, attacking the arm of the bot that held it! "Stay away from it!" he calls to Fate. "I'll deal with it!" Of course, anyone with something from afar they can use could work, but anyone who gets close could be whomped.

COMBAT: Steven Universe has used Shield Slam on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe braces 12 Fatigue damage from Amethyst's ACME ATTACK, taking 5 Fatigue damage!  Amethyst is Psyched!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe counters 4 Fatigue damage from Steven Universe's Shield Slam, taking 11 Fatigue damage!  Steven Universe is
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe's counterattack, Industrial Grade Destabilizer, partially gets through, doing 7 Fatigue damage to Steven
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe cleanly braces 28 Fatigue damage from Sourisi's Crashing Tooth, taking 5 Fatigue damage!
<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"Y-yes," Yumi answers Mikoto, looking over to her in the fight, and calls, "I'm fine! Really!" She looks forward again to the battle at hand--and that's when she can spot La Sirene, and put together the words that were in her voice. What she said--nobody else dies. Garnet, and...

Yumi's spell starts to work... but doesn't quite reach the pilot. Yumi frowns, looking down at her phone, "Just you--Oh, look out!" She would keep worrying after Mikoto but the goop starting to spread in the hallway is a more pressing matter, and abrubtly Yumi has to scoot back and then--

"Aaaah--" The robonids roll towards her, and she throws out her hand, "Reflection!" A green barrier appears between them--and as soon as the lead Robonoid hits it it explodes outward in a rain of black fire, sending a great green beam of light right back to roll at the others. Tumbling back, Yumi gets a reprieve as her return spell bursts into flames. She starts to fall back, and in a flash of light, finishes with her phone--and abrubtly a broom appears nearby, hanging in the air, its bristles sprigs of wood with ivy about the length. She scoots back and sits on it, suddenly rising above the goop towards the ceiling of the room. As she rises, she calls to Fate, "I dunno, break it!? Most things don't work when you break them! But that might release its energy..."

She narrows her eyes. "I think we're better off trying to stop her from using it!" As she says this, her cat familiar finishes scrambling up the broom to sit there. Yumi looks... nervous. "I dunno if I can take another shot of that thing..." She steadies herself, and her staff floats beside her, now. Tracing an arc downward in the air, a shadow abrubtly rushes in a wave towards Peridot, seeking to sap her strength!

...And it's then that she hovers beside La Sirene, "...We can do this, okay?"

COMBAT: Yumi Ohzora has used Weakness Hex on Hotaru Tomoe.
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Mercury [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

With Steven and Amethyst helping Ruby, Mercury halts her approach of the bot pit. This is only partially helpful because it only keeps her from getting the worst of the goop on her. It's not enough to avoid it though and she cringes as it cakes her hair and her clothing. Now she knows how Pluto felt earlier in the storage room.

Temporarily distracted from the remaining turrets, Sailor Mercury hears Peridot's words. Almost without thinking, she responds, "So, why are you attacking us then Peridot? If you didn't want us here in the first place?" Mercury didn't forget the comments about the Cluster from before but she is still at loss in her understanding of how all the pieces of this mess fit together.

The appearance of the destabilizer is probably the most terrifying thing she has seen. Knowing it's effects and what happened to them with just one hit. Seeing Mikoto being targeted and then not moving, Mercury feels compelled to try and help but before she can do anything, Steven is in front of her.

"Steven!!! Noooooo...." It's true he could withstand a lot of the destabilizing power but seeing him willing to take a hit from something that looks that menacing makes her heart leap into her throat and she is scared for him. So worried that it takes a minute for her to register Fate's question. Mercury looks to the younger girl and shakes her head, "I-I don't know."

With more robonoid waves heading for her, Mercury manages to avoid most of them but her focus is still on the destablizer. "I can try and and find out more about it but... not sure if it will help." It was gem technology after all but with a flip of her hand, Mercury's goggles appear to be searching for more answers as to the powers of the destablizer. If they could figure out more about it, maybe they could know how to handle it better. She hated to see Steven take the hit even if he said it didn't bother him. It still looked painful to her.

COMBAT: Sailor Mercury has used Mercury Goggle on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe dodges 3 Fatigue damage from Yumi Ohzora's Weakness Hex, taking 5 Fatigue damage!  Yumi Ohzora is Psyched!
Hotaru Tomoe's Fade and Flash abilities activate!  Exhausted and Stagger applied to Hotaru Tomoe!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe counters 0 Fatigue damage from Sailor Mercury's Mercury Goggle, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
Analysis performed by Sailor Mercury!  Diversion and Exhausted applied to Hotaru Tomoe!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe's counterattack, GOGGLEWAR, fails to get through, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Sailor Mercury!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Pluto [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Pluto finds that she doesn't disbelieve Peridot in the slightest about the taking of prisoners. There's no faking that kind of frustration. She watches the Gem operate the Peribot, ducking as one of the overhead turrets detonates and retaliates via lightning discharge. Pluto catches Mercury take a hit from the corner of her eye -- she also sees the other senshi fire back with a burst of bubbles, and nods to herself over that determination. The further destruction of Kasagami's dwindling wardrobe doesn't escape her notice, either.

Then there's a massive, MASSIVE Destabilizer deployed, vividly dominating Pluto's attention along with that of quite a few others. It's aimed at... "Mikoto!" The fear in the girl's eyes strikes to the soul.

Pluto will never get there in time, especially not with robonoids getting shot in her direction as big metal projectiles. There's one headed directly for her, demanding she focus, and so -- she does. With a crouch she sets the Garnet Rod before her at an angle, planting the haft as best she can and bracing, hard. The robot hits just as hard and she feels it in every limb like a hammerblow, but between the titanium of her sacred weapon and the carefully chosen deflection angle, it bounces past and overhead without hitting Pluto directly.

Fate calls her name among others, asks for a way to deal with the massive Destabilizer -- but Sailor Mercury is rising to the occasion with her goggles at the ready and, Pluto knows, has the imagination and intellect to take this on. She trusts the senshi and turns to press the attack instead, watchful for any threats against Mercury in the meantime. She won't let her fellow senshi be vulnerable in this moment.

With the Garnet Rod whirling in her hands, she takes on more of the onrushing, projectile robonoids. With any luck the rotational force of the sacred weapon will help to deflect them away, but she's already well-gooped. The first order of business is destroying anything that comes their way, whatever it takes.

COMBAT: Sailor Pluto has used Pendulum Blitz on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe cleanly braces 23 Fatigue damage from Sailor Pluto's Pendulum Blitz, taking 4 Fatigue damage!  Sailor Pluto
is Psyched!
<Pose Tracker> La Sirene de Diamant [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

That sure is a lot of enigmatic blue goop rolling down towards her, la Sirene thinks, if not quite in those words. Batiste is glad he got onto her shoulder, that's for sure.

Peridot says things that are charming and helpful in a way - she didn't support this agenda, how nice of her! - and then produces a vast yellow weapon like the one Jasper had. Somehow these things don't really quite balance in the eyes of the girl from the sea of tears.

Struggling, she sucks in breath through her teeth.

And that woman, the witch, Yumi, speaks to her. Her pale eyes flick to the side. "Stay behind me," she advises her.

Her eyes turn towards the front again - and she sparkles. What?! Just a flash of light?! Except that afterwards her own position is different - she moved perhaps two yards to the left. Or was it to the back? Yumi, nearby, gets to join the club, the clinging waves of silent heat-distortion-esque light a shroud, a veil, a guard.

Probably. Maybe it'll trick the turrets at the least.

COMBAT: La Sirene de Diamant has used Vision Displace on La Sirene de Diamant.
COMBAT: La Sirene de Diamant has used Vision Displace on Yumi Ohzora.
COMBAT: La Sirene de Diamant accepts La Sirene de Diamant's Vision Displace, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Accelerate applied to La
Sirene de Diamant!
COMBAT: Yumi Ohzora accepts La Sirene de Diamant's Vision Displace, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Accelerate applied to Yumi Ohzora!
<Pose Tracker> Endo Naoki [Juuban Public School (12)] has posed.

Fallen Stern goes through robonoids. Thus far, Endo has not found out the problem with doing that. Now, however, he's very quickly learning what it is. As both Endo and his allies clear the hall, the knight soon finds himself awash the messy substance, blown backward and slathered in gunk. His teeth clench tight as he's knocked from his feet, straining to get up and finding that he's stuck rather soundly to the green floor below.

"Yaaa-" He wiggles, struggling to lift himself to no avail. "I can't-"

But then he can! He blinks when he feels a familiar wind picking up, tearing ooze off his body and freeing him from the tar-like substance. "Aah, Fuu-san! Thanks!" A hand is raised in a quick wave of thanks toward the wind knight, but he can't spare much more. There are bigger threats.

Like the extra-strength destabilizer that Peridot's Peribot is wielding. His lips thin, a shot of fear running through him at being faced with that weapon once again. Even if Steven can shield them from a few blows, the poor boy's not going to stand up to that thing forever.

Endo himself doesn't have any good ideas about what to do about that, though. What Yumi says, however, makes the most sense to him: "We can break it. Stern--"


Purple-black fire erupts along Endo's blade, vents hissing steam and machinery audibly vibrating as the weapon hums with energy.

COMBAT: Endo Naoki has used Zerstorung Drang on Endo Naoki.
COMBAT: Endo Naoki accepts Endo Naoki's Zerstorung Drang, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Empower and Surge applied to Endo Naoki!
<Pose Tracker> Cure Bloom [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

The horrible dark electric bullet forms in front of Cure Bloom. Her eyes widen, and she makes a startled noise in her throat before thrusting her arms forward, a shell of orange light surrounding her.

The lightning slams into it, crackles along the entire length of the barrier for a moment before the barrier fails and Bloom ejects backwards, slamming into the ground with black lightning crackling around her arms and legs. She breathes once, twice, quick and rasping. She checks on Ivy and La Sirene, now that she's been flung back to the rear line. They seem to be fine, for now, so Cure Bloom turns her attention forward again. Punching that turret worked out great, last time! Maybe this time she can even be not directly next to it, so she doesn't get superzapped.

And so thinking she rushes in, hurling herself with chaotic leaps between free patches of floor and, in one case, hitting the wall with a puff of spiritual light, before leaping over directly at one of the remaining turrets with a sparkling point of light on her fingertip. She does nothing dramatic; she simply touches it, affixing that mote of light, before falling back to the ground, and then quickly leaping away from the front lane of Turrets and Peribot.

Around which point the turret experiences an explosion of magic from Cure Bloom's erupting power!!

COMBAT: Cure Bloom has used Petal Seed on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe partially dodges 6 Fatigue damage from Cure Bloom's Petal Seed, taking 24 Fatigue damage!  Hotaru Tomoe's
Fade and Flash abilities activate!
<Pose Tracker> Kasagami Araki [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Mikoto freezes, but Kasagami can do little to help her ally! The sight of that massive Destabilizer rushing for the kitty-swordswoman has her heart skip a beat as the assault of lasers and 'bot and robonoid bowling takes their targets. Terror forms in her heart, even as she forces her body to move to keep herself alive. There's only one turret down, and so many other threats to mind!

"If that's what you thought, then why did you go along with the plan?" Offers Kasagami vindictively towards Peridot.

She doesn't really care about the answer. She's just venting rage at the engineering Gem that's been such an obstacle to those she cares for. Those rolling robonoids rush for her, and Kasagami barely sidesteps the first. She can feel it as she loses shoelaces on her boots, only to make a ballroom waltz away from another that only the edge of her wooden blade propels her away from in time to manage to not lose a foot. A backwards leap, then a dodge forward up to one knee has her loosing a sleeve of her rose-coat on her back. Then up and back again. One eye is narrowed in concentration.

To see Steven take on the brunt of that massive weapon, and miraculously keep it all together. He doesn't go down, he doesn't get dusted like Garnet. Instead he fights back, and Kasagami feels a newfound respect for the boy grow in her heart. It galls her to think, but she knows she can't withstand that Destabilizer. But if there's one thing she can do?

It's wade into a melee.

Surging to the side of Sailor Pluto, the Would-Be King joins in with the Guardian of Time to crash into those rolling robonoids that the Peribot sends out. No longer content to simply avoid, wood grinds along green floor before she starts a flurry of sword slashes, spins, rough kicks and elbows even as crimson rose petals lay a scent of natural beauty found in Ohtori to this sterile horror of a ship. Her attacks are all aggressive and desperate now, with her allies in danger and the situation dire.

She no longer cares about any potential explosions of goop. These things have to be cut asunder, and Kasagami puts her strong, skilled arms into the task with gusto and fury as she lets out a fierce warcry with every attack.

COMBAT: Kasagami Araki has used Crimson Flurry on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe fails to brace Kasagami Araki's Crimson Flurry, taking 46 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
<Pose Tracker> Mikoto Minagi [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Look out, cry the girls. Look out, cries a boy. Mikoto, cries another. It is so distant to Mikoto because the world is distant and all the universe is the charging yellow fire of that massive, massive destabiliser. Her breath catches in her throat, refuses to move past her lips.

She has only moments and she should act, she must act, everything about her demands action and yet the fear grips her heart, grips every muscle, and she is trembling and she is not moving and this



... end.

Mikoto flinches as the impact comes down, unable to look away, unable to even blink. It means she sees it, in perfect clarity: that little boy rushing in front of her, just in time with that shield. The impact, not with her vulnerable flesh but with a weapon pink and beautiful and translucent. The way he wrestles with it even after that shield dissipates, the strength even that small boy wields as he bodily shoves the industrial stabiliser to the side.

She gasps, staring at him, her eyes wide and terrified and somehow, somehow unharmed.

"Steven," Mikoto chokes out, and that horror is so evident in her voice, but there's relief there, utmost gratitude. "Steven..."

Mikoto Minagi, that unshakable warrior, has been shaken terribly, and it's clear she needs a moment. But she knows one thing: she would not be here, not be here at all, were it not for the bravery of Steven Universe.

COMBAT: Mikoto Minagi has used Obsidian Gratitude on Steven Universe.
COMBAT: Steven Universe accepts Mikoto Minagi's Obsidian Gratitude, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Steven Universe is Cheered!
<Pose Tracker> Hotaru Tomoe [Infinity Institute (7)] has posed.


aren't going down easy. Maybe if Fate had focused on one target instead of three she might have gotten some traction with her binding spell, but instead the little yellow cubes are zotted out of existence almost as quickly as they're made, Peridot cackling all the while. Tonfa bounce off of them and return to Sourisi, but they remain intact.

And that familiar hum of theirs is rising again -- they've recharged.

"DIEDIEDIEDIEDIEDIEDIEDIE!!" demands Peridot as she showers the hallway with more of those painful black laserbeams.

Then Bloom's little magical time bomb goes off and a second turret is toast -- AFTER it discharged.


are not immune to the barrage. But, there are a lot of them, and Peridot seems to consider them acceptable collateral damage. There's no particular love lost for her creations(?); if she has a good shot through one, she takes it.

And she has a lot of good shots.

The remaining robonoids -- after three of them are popped like packing material by a plummeting Anvilthyst -- crash into the back-to-back wall that is Sailor Pluto and Kasagami Araki, and there may be GOOP absolutely everywhere, threatening to stick people not only to the floor and walls but, due to the close quarters, together, but not a bit of it reaches La Sirene, Endo, Fuu, or Sailor Mercury.

Sailor Mercury, whose eyes meet Peridot's through two pairs of goggles.

The Homeworld Gem starts typing furiously! She ducks the Witch of Lost Ivy's curse, though a little of it ruffles her hair (it is hair, not a helmet, as it transpires, that yellow triangle above her head) in passing and she visibly shivers, as though almost too familiar with the feeling Yumi was trying to induce.

But, glaring, she continues to focus-- it's taking the Mercury Supercomputer, powering the Mercury Goggles, longer than usual to start receiving data. And also, little flickers of green light are startingto spark at Sailor Mercury's temples--

      • RECEIVING DATA. . . .***

"WHAT?!" Peridot either just lost a hacking contest to Sailor Mercury, or saw what happened when Steven grabbed the destabilizer. Maybe the latter explains the former. Maybe not.

And then the data pours in, blossoming before the senshi's eyes. This is unfamiliar technology to the machine's database, but it's quickly able to identify several crucial weaknesses in the robot: first, that the connection between the destabilizer and the arm is weak, that it isn't a fully integrated weapon and could probably be removed if it was hit at just the right point right there.

Second, that the robot's speed is its greatest asset which can be denied if they can trip up its legs or alter the coefficient of friction on the floor beneath it.

And finally, that the robot's defensive field can be compromised by a sufficiently simultaneous set of massive attacks. Until that happens, taking out the destabilizer is impossible.

Which Steven learns when he gives it the old elementary try. The energy courses through him painfully, and when he tries to get around it to bash up the arm, he hits the defensive field, then gets another series of shocks for his trouble.

"What ARE you!?" complains the mech's pilot, as she triggers the arm to spin rapidly, trying to fling Steven off and into Sailor Mercury.

COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Bowling With Stevens on Steven Universe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on Amethyst.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Fate Testarossa.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Fuu Hououji.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Sourisi.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on La Sirene de Diamant.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Endo Naoki.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on Mikoto Minagi.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Black Crystal Barrage on Cure Bloom.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on Yumi Ohzora.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used Bowling With Stevens on Sailor Mercury.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on Sailor Pluto.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe has used GOOP! on Kasagami Araki.
COMBAT: Fate Testarossa perfectly dodges 14 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 0 Fatigue damage!
Critical Dodge!  Fate Testarossa's Fade and Flash abilities activate!
COMBAT: Kasagami Araki cleanly braces 17 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 3 Fatigue damage!  Tangle and Trap
applied to Kasagami Araki!
COMBAT: Sailor Pluto dodges 7 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 11 Fatigue damage!  Trap applied to Sailor Pluto!
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji counters 10 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 10 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Fuu Hououji's counterattack, Gale Arrow, partially gets through, doing 13 Fatigue damage to Hotaru Tomoe!
COMBAT: Amethyst fails to dodge Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 21 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!
COMBAT: Sourisi partially dodges 3 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 12 Fatigue damage!  Sourisi's
Fade and Flash abilities activate!
COMBAT: Yumi Ohzora perfectly dodges 18 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Dodge!
COMBAT: Steven Universe braces 7 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Bowling With Stevens, taking 11 Fatigue damage!  Steven
Universe's Block and Parry abilities activate!  Stun applied to Steven Universe!
COMBAT: La Sirene de Diamant fails to dodge Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 18 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Endo Naoki braces 12 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 5 Fatigue damage!  Endo Naoki's
Block and Parry abilities activate!
COMBAT: Mikoto Minagi dodges 7 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's GOOP!, taking 11 Fatigue damage!  Mikoto Minagi's Fade and Flash
abilities activate!  Tangle applied to Mikoto Minagi!
COMBAT: Sailor Mercury fails to brace Hotaru Tomoe's Bowling With Stevens, taking 19 Fatigue damage!  Stun applied to Sailor
COMBAT: Cure Bloom dodges 9 Fatigue damage from Hotaru Tomoe's Black Crystal Barrage, taking 13 Fatigue damage!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Mercury [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

In some other timeline or something, Mercury wonders if her and Peridot could be some kind of allies or something but as their eyes meet in the present time something triggers. The green lady begins to type in earnest as Mercury's goggles process what information that they can pick up. It takes awhile for her to begin getting anything and just when she thinks it's useless she can feel the sparks. It's unlike anything she has felt before but then...

Everything starts coming at her rapidfire and Mercury actually begins to smile. "I got something guys!" Her eyes move rapidly as her brain processes what the computer is telling her. When the analysis is finished, her goggles disappear and she looks back to the others who are still launching their own attacks.

With little time to waste she relays what she found out and begins delegating as quickly as she can. "Kasa, Pluto..." She points to the arm. "I think we can break off the destabilizer but first... we need to break her defenses using big attacks."

Then she turns to the others, "Does anyone have some kind of trap for the robot? I can use ice but I think there is something else that would work better to slow it down. The robot body is less troublesome if slowed."

As she continues to ask for help and give directions, she can feel Peridot's eyes burning into her. The sudden outburst directed towards her makes Mercury pause as Steven is thrown towards her. Mercury doesn't try and dodge but rather takes the hit as Steven lands hard into her body. The sailor guardian grunts at the impact, falling backwards and away from the Peribot.

When she can find her breath again she looks to Steven, "A-are you okay Steven-kun?" Worry fills her eyes with everything that just happened.

COMBAT: Sailor Mercury has used Tactical Advisory on Steven Universe.
COMBAT: Sailor Mercury has used Tactical Advisory on Kasagami Araki.
COMBAT: Sailor Mercury has used Tactical Advisory on Sailor Pluto.
COMBAT: Kasagami Araki accepts Sailor Mercury's Tactical Advisory, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Cleanse! All of Kasagami Araki's
debuffs are cleared!
COMBAT: Sailor Pluto accepts Sailor Mercury's Tactical Advisory, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Cleanse! All of Sailor
Pluto's debuffs are cleared!
COMBAT: Steven Universe accepts Sailor Mercury's Tactical Advisory, taking 0 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Cleanse! All of
Steven Universe's debuffs are cleared!
<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (6)] has posed.

A well-planned turnaround for Steven ends up... not doing much. "Ah crud, it is shielded!" Shields unfortunately do not negate shields. A retaliatory momentary shock happens, causing him to jolt just long enough for Peridot to get the drop on him. "AH!" the boy calls out, trying desperately to cling on to it, but then gets flung across the room "Uh oh!"

The boy flies soars through the air with the grace of a brick. Sailor Mercury will quickly find a small sinnamon roll of a child is hurdling right at her!


Correction. Was hurdling toward her.

"BUH. Sorry.... Sailor Mercury..." Steven, wobbly, makes it to his feet, and helps up Mercury if she needs it as well. "I-I'm okay. Thank you!" Rescued by a Senshi. This was a good day. The boy's head is still well shaken after that involuntary flight. "Gotta get... back over there!"

Steven begins to wade past the destructive laser barrages and stray robonoids to confront Peribot again. "You aren't gonna zap anyone anymore with that thing!"

The boy looks toward Kasagami, Mikoto, and Cure Bloom. He has to make an opening for them after hearing Mercury's analysis. "Go in! I'll make an opening!" Steven rushes in, and goes to actually grapple with that Destabilizer. It's gonna hurt for sure, but if it is tied up on him, the close quarters fighters have nothing to fear.

COMBAT: Steven Universe has used Tiger's Claws on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe counters 7 Fatigue damage from Steven Universe's Tiger's Claws, taking 20 Fatigue damage!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe's counterattack, Industrial Grade Destabilizer, fails to get through, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Steven
<Pose Tracker> Amethyst [None] has posed.

Splat! Bang! Crash! Gunk! The Anvilthyst drops and crushes some more robonoids! However, she is covered in even more goop! "Maybe I should've thought this through better..."

Lasers blast and Stevens are bowled, everything was chaos! Amethyst is ready to add to the chaos... but something stops her. Her inner Pearl nags her to have a plan and work as a team. "Pearl..." Amethyst sighs. She'd find Pearl soon enough. For now, she follows the imaginary Pearl's advice, and follows Sailor Mercury's advice. "Trap it up? I have juuust the thing!"

Fancy whip skills by the short Gem cause a mess of whip everywhere, until she yanks it back. It all tries to tangle around one of the legs of the Robonoidinoidbotmechmachine.

COMBAT: Amethyst has started a combo targeting Hotaru Tomoe!
<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

A lull in the robonoids means more lasers come in their stead; the Wind Knight wills her bow and quiver to materialize almost without thinking about it, gathering wind magic as she nocks an arrow and draws it back; with a cry of, "Gale Arrow!" she lets it fly, wrapped in wind magic to steady and accelerate its flight - and while the sheath of wind helps throw some of the lasers off, it's really just a small tunnel through a large barrage.

Even if it *is* enough of a tunnel to see her arrow crash through the delicate internals of a turret. It might do more than that, but she doesn't have time to appreciate those little victories - particularly because Sailor Mercury has a plan.

"Count me in on the trapping, Mercury-san!" the Magic Knight of Wind calls out; she's already on the move again, angling for what she hopes is a better vantage point from which to launch her attack. She gathers her magic and her will as she moves, glancing about and trying to size up who else can assist in hindering the Robonoid gestalt ... not, it turns out, that she needed to make that decision; Amethyst is already on it with her whips. Quite literally 'on it,' as it happens - but it gives the Wind Knight her opening.

"Winds of Admonishment!!" the green-clad Magic Knight calls out, trying to wrap a whirlwind around the Peribot and keep it held in place.

COMBAT: Fuu Hououji has joined the combo started by Amethyst!
<Pose Tracker> Sourisi [Juuban Public School (9)] has posed.

"Okay...well, that didn't work like I hoped." Catching her tonfa in time as they return back to her hands, Sourisi still looks positiviely drenched with goop, but she feels like she's can actually move now. Her tonfa did buy her time to free her from the worst of the sticky alien matter.

This couldn't have come at a better time as Peridot activates the turrets again and fires down upon the magical warriors once more. Despite her efforts, the remaining goop is still much too clingy to let Sourisi evade with all of her usual agility and grace, with several direct blasts to her torso!

Suffering from several laser burns only pushes the mouse girl onwards, determined to prove her worth during the ensuring battle. "I'm not a burden, I just need a better way to take her down!" Despite her words, Sourisi does know that she's no Ladybug, who can think of an amazing plan that leads to victory despite the odds.

Sailor Mercury can be heard over the sounds of magical girls against goop bots, and that gives her an idea. Ladybug may not be here, but a plan from the Senshi of Mercury will prove to be just as effective. "I can help with any trap for that robot! I'm thinking we should see if we can make the entire thing go splat on impact!"

Swinging her tail around, Sourisi taps one of her tonfa with the fake appendage and pulls the tonfa away, the weapon now connected to her directly with a glowing yellow magical chain and making a makeshift whip of her own.

Seeing Amethyst tangle up one of the legs, Sourisi charges in and loops around before throwing the chain-tonfa at Peribot's other leg, then snapping back with her tail to cause it to spiral around the free leg. With the magical chain pulled tightly, the martial mouse reverses directions and pulls on her own tail, pulling in the opposite direction. "Ergh...now...down you...go!"

COMBAT: Sourisi has joined the combo started by Amethyst!
<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [Infinity Institute (5)] has posed.

"Steven!" Fate obviously sounds concerned as he steps into Mikoto's way - but she does remember how he was taking those fields before - nodding, "Be careful! It's much bigger after all!"

The strain of trying to maintain the spell against Peridot's defenses overtaxes her quickly, the girl's face positively taut with it almost instantly - and collapsing just a moment later. And then the turrets face upon her. Forcing herself through the pain and exhaustion she whips a serpentine path around the Black Crystal lasers - taking a few grazing shots to her protection spells but otherwise managing to stay one just a little bit ahead of their targetting.

Fortunately - Mercury does have a plan. As evidenced by - well Peridot's reaction to it.

And then her advisory - "Oh! Well..." The plate surrounding Bardiche's cylinder shifts upwards, a cylinder turns - and pounds in a cartridge as it starts to shift. <Haken Form.> "You won't need to worry about the shield for long."

Many of the girls here today were on opposite sides of the war - but right now at least - at this moment - it doesn't matter.

"Lost Ivy... Endo... I know we haven't always got along but... we can manage this together."

The poleaxe has finished it's transformation to a long hooked scythe by this point, and Fate begins to flourish it in a whirling spin until - <Haken Saber.>

The blade detaches in a flight across the hall towards the field until inevitably it strikes the energy field causing it to shine into life. The blade itself applies constant pressure - and gives everyone an easy to follow target on where to apply the force to - building and building upon itself. However - it's not until everyone else attacks that she announces, "Saber Explode."

And it does - detonating into a massive electrical explosion.

COMBAT: Fate Testarossa has started a combo targeting Hotaru Tomoe!
<Pose Tracker> Sailor Pluto [Infinity Institute (U)] has posed.

Sailor Pluto feels the arrival of the swordswoman before she even catches that long wooden blade flashing around over her shoulder. It's in the warm presence at her back, fierce and familiar. "Kassie!" is a glad cry, and the senshi focuses on her side of the oncoming robonoids. She knows that the other side will be handled, trusts in Kasagami's strong arms and skill.

Together they fight, and together they ensure the safety of those in harm's way. The robot charge breaks upon their stand -- but not without cost. Pluto's ready for this part, to some degree. She's already mostly goop-colored. Still, this comes from a whole wave of the things, and even though she tries to leap the bulk of it there is just too much. A second shellacking of robot guts, it is.

It pays off though, as Mercury sees straight through to the weak points of this robotic assault and calls them out. With such analysis comes clarity from chaos, and Pluto shakes herself free of the worst of the slime. "Thank you, Mercury! You can leave it to us!"

The Guardian of Time casts a look over her shoulder, garnet eyes seeking steel. "Nothing would make me happier right now. Shall we, Kassie?" She smiles, as if asking her love to dance. And isn't she, in a manner of speaking?

Forward she surges and again she trusts, even as the Garnet Rod whirls up to a titanium blur upon twirling hands, in Kasagami and her fearsome sword arm. The sacred weapon becomes a sound more than an object, heard more than seen by its buzzing displacement of air, and it slices the air before the senshi as she runs toward the Peribot.

Sailor Pluto aims for a specific spot, a point directly before her charge. She brings all of the wicked rotational force down, raining blows over and over, not caring how the forcefield might shove back or repel the force back at her. She just grits her teeth and keeps spinning the Garnet Rod until the very last minute -- then flips back with a whirl of evergreen hair overhead, making way for Kasagami's strike!

<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Yes, the witch--the witch who was there, that night in Shinjuku, was out there to keep people from making it into the building. She's here now--and she looks at La Sirene, too. "...All right," she answers, at the advice, and hovers a little bit further back--"I'll try--"

The spell washes over her, the light shimmering. She can see there are differences in the air, illusions at work. "...Nice," she says to La Sirene, and looks forward--to see the ducking Peridot. That-that is actually hair. The shiver makes the witch feel a little bad, but the goop is much more concerning a moment later, and she yelps lightly and banks upward fast, the shimmer of La Sirene's light causing the goop to go straight into a fake Yumi of strange light.

"That was close--" Mercury mentions a plan, something they can do. And Yumi looks to it--and that's when she hears Fate's voice. She looks over to her, hesitates just briefly. "...Okay. For this, we can."

Yumi floats up further. "Mikoto-chan!" she calls, and looks to La Sirene and Bloom, without calling directly, "Let's do it, okay?"

Yumi does not need to transform--but she does take her staff back into her hand, pointing it down at the shield. She starts to trace with her other hand, and her voice is distant, chanting, "Wrath of forgotten spirits..."

Yumi thrusts forward her weapon and the runes in the air start to burst, exploding forward into cascading beams of power as she calls, "Dark Radiance!"

COMBAT: Yumi Ohzora has joined the combo started by Fate Testarossa!
COMBAT: Sailor Pluto has started a combo targeting Hotaru Tomoe!
<Pose Tracker> Mikoto Minagi [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

Mikoto needs time to recover, as her heart hammers and her grip on Miroku is white-knuckled. But there's no time to calm a tumultuous heart, on the battlefield. No time to reflect on why she froze, why of every terror she has witnessed in her life, every incomprehensible Witch and horrific situation and life-threatening battle it was this which broke her, why her untouchable resolve was shaken by the sight of so much yellow fire. No time to think on the implications of why disruption is so traumatising, to Mikoto Minagi.

Because the robonoids are everywhere. The robonoids' GOOP is everywhere.

Not faced down with that gigantic destabiliser's horrific light, Mikoto's instincts take over again, even as her mind and heart scream their displeasure, and she is leaping away as those bright eyes catch the GOOP approaching. It's not quite enough - she's still slowed by her injuries - but she manages to evade the worst of the sticking sludge, and while it clings to her and makes it more difficult to move, she forces her way through it.

Her breath still comes so shallow through her lungs, past open lips. But there is anger there, now, alongside the horror. Mikoto's breath comes ragged, at first, through grit teeth, but as she turns her attention back to Peridot, her lips curl and that breath turns into a terrible snarl.

Movement has reminded her of her purpose. Movement has shaken the fear from her bones.

And Peridot is no longer annoying, to Mikoto Minagi.

Peridot tried to destroy her, to rip apart her heart, to utterly crush her in blazing yellow fire, and Mikoto is sure she would not have survived the attack - or that she would not be Mikoto Minagi if she had.

Peridot tried to break her, to annihilate everything she is, everything she is supposed to be. To annihilate her purpose.

Her obsidian heart demands action. Mercury's words reach her, even in her building anger - that they need to break her defences in order to break that destabiliser. Mikoto bristles and snarls, grasping Miroku tightly.

She cannot deny the fear. But fear cannot rule her. Will not rule her. She cannot allow it. Yumi calls to her, and Mikoto nods her understanding. Together, then - not just as the team she is, but amongst the might of everyone around her.

There is relief, when Steven steps forward, wrestles with that destabiliser to keep it occupied. It means Mikoto can act without so much creeping terror, charging towards Peridot's mechanical form, screaming bloody retribution.

She spins as she approaches, once, twice - it is not quick, the attack she charges, it is menacing and clearly-telegraphed. She plants her feet and swings Miroku upwards with the momentum she's built - and her claymore is so difficult to control, but Mikoto's strength is legendary and it hits the mark just where Fate has indicated. When it bites into that field, red sigils open on the blade like eyes and the sword glows blinding white, terrible red energy flooding the area of impact.

Peridot will break.

<Pose Tracker> La Sirene de Diamant [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

So many lasers. There's a great many and la Sirene is struggling. She can't really avoid them; she ends up leaning back, raising one hand to try and cover her face partway. The black diamonds on the back of her gloves would probably survive her complete catastrophic spontaneous human combustion -

But that doesn't do her much good, does it? Batiste hides in her armpit, squeeking in dismay, when hope comes to them. Suddenly. From the voice of blue --

And she's addressing Kasagami and Sailor Pluto.

This gives a strange emotional ellipsis to the interior of la Sirene, but she has little time to embrace it. Not with Earth spinning above and this creature before them. Think not of them, la Sirene thinks. Think not of the unworthy living! Think of the worthy dead!

If Fate can do it, la Sirene thinks as she opens her eyes, so can I. She doesn't look back towards Yumi as she raises her left hand, forming the sign and narrowing her eyes, feeling where the lines of attention, projection, and force are trending. "Les Mysteres," she says, more drawn out now, more intense, and then her right hand comes up.

Yumi calls out to Mikoto. La Sirene's lips thin to a line. "COME!" she declaims. Down comes her right hand.

The wailing distorting noise rings out. This time the shot is clean and simple, without her previous distortions or innovations. But now there's a narrower target, and the shadowy mystic stuff is prone to distort and follow the lead of other things. Like a shadow, it goes to a place you can predict, but it can, at times, move awfully fast.

COMBAT: La Sirene de Diamant has joined the combo started by Fate Testarossa!
<Pose Tracker> Endo Naoki [Juuban Public School (12)] has posed.

Endo, sword still burning, turns his head sharply when Sailor Mercury gives the group her analysis. Fate chimes in after, and he gives a sharp nod. "Okay!" He hardly thinks twice about joining forces with Yumi. There's a clear and present danger, and it is composed wholly or Peridot. That's where he's going.

Purple triangles spin to life beneath his feet, whirling and burning in the air as he lifts his weapon once again. There's only a seconds pause, and then he launches forward. The boy spins, bringing his weapon around in a huge, circular arc, contrails of purple and black flame following behind.

He comes in the wake of Fate's explosion, his blade aiming to crash into the robot's barrier mere seconds after the detonation.

COMBAT: Endo Naoki has joined the combo started by Fate Testarossa!
COMBAT: Mikoto Minagi has joined the combo started by Fate Testarossa!
COMBAT: COMBO! Amethyst, Fuu Hououji, and Sourisi have used Combo: The Binds that Tie, composed of Get Over Here!, Winds of
Admonishment, and Tail Snag, on Hotaru Tomoe.
<Pose Tracker> Kasagami Araki [Ohtori Academy (11)] has posed.

And while Kasagami finds some base pleasure in slashing up the rolling-robonoids, the fact that they keep exploding into goop is a fact that perhaps she should have learned one storage room back. But perhaps she has, as a (very) relatively little gets on her. Mostly this involves barely managing to not get stuck to Pluto in an unpleasant way for once, and also the fact both boots end up somehow stuck to a wall.

With near physical pain, Kasagami Araki slashes out the shoestrings to her beloved boots, proceeds to then lose her socks from more exploding waves of robo-goo, and now knows what Pluto was suffering much, much earlier with cold toes onto Gem spacship floor.

At least one of those feet is relatively numb to such. It's not a very big comfort all in all. Some of it is in her hair and she's going to need a massive shower after this!

But concerns of vanity are secondary during a fight for the life of self and friends. Even a young woman of Kasagami's athleticism needs a second, and so she sucks in a few breaths. Mercury points out the arm, at the weak points, and most importantly? The fact that the shield is the thing that keeps Peribot safe. She finds herself laughing, in that humorless, stressed way so common to humanity in dire situations.

Kassie grins. "So hit that point with everything we have!? Sailor Mercury, I think we can provide that!" Offers the Duelist with renewed enthusiasm. All the despair of being locked in a cell, that break neck fleeing, the fear, the despair, the sight of her allies being threatened by Peridot and her endless patrols of robots and this monstrosity!?

Steven is being tossed around, and then he charges in so bravely for the grapple. Kassie's good eye lights up, and she inwardly applauds the young man for such a reckless, furious charge against his enemy! "That thing isn't any match for you, Steve-kun!" Encourages Kasagami. Then her attention turns.

A glance to Sailor Pluto.

Wind and whip and other magic seeks to entangle and trip, but for a single moment her entire world is within those dark, endless pools of midnight.

"Any day, any night my love, let us stride together towards victory and our dreams!" Concurs the Crimson Rose Duelist, before she takes a single step back.

It's her love that rushes in, battering and smashing with the Garnet Rod. Kasagami slowly draws back that wooden blade, high into the air, and then her strong legs bend to the knees. She leaps up in a high, arcing jump as she tumbles into a flip, blade carried above her head such that the wooden 'edge' would miss the ceiling by a hair's breadth. All behind her, that coat of rose petals fades away to cast it's dark red sharpness across a blade of wood, teeming with energy and magic. Her good eye peers down before the young woman puts all of her height and weight into falling like a graceful, elegant meteor with the descending length of her faux-nodachi and the full force of that rotating flip down towards the weak point in the arm that holds the Destabiliser that Steven is grappling with.

And perhaps, more importantly, the forcefield protecting that weak point that Pluto is slamming into.

COMBAT: Kasagami Araki has joined the combo started by Sailor Pluto!
COMBAT: COMBO! Sailor Pluto and Kasagami Araki have used Pendulum Blitz and Falling Petals Cut The Soul on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe fails to counter Amethyst, Fuu Hououji, and Sourisi's Combo: The Binds that Tie, taking 26 Fatigue damage!
Critical Hit!  Amethyst, Fuu Hououji, and Sourisi are Psyched!  Cripple, Diversion, and Trap applied to Hotaru Tomoe!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe's counterattack, PERINOPE, fails to get through, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Amethyst!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe fails to counter Sailor Pluto and Kasagami Araki's Combo: Pendulum Blitz, taking 87 Fatigue damage!  Sailor
Pluto and Kasagami Araki are Psyched!
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe's counterattack, Energy Barrier, fails to get through, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Sailor Pluto!
<Pose Tracker> Cure Bloom [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

The turrets release their power and Cure Bloom is dancing again. She's not that agile, actualy; oh, she's a magical girl, and quick on her feet as is proper, but she's not the glorious pirouetting goddess that Cure Egret is. Which is to say it's more like she throws herself up into a split as a series of horrifying death rays slip between her boots, narrowly avoiding the worst of the shot. She lands with a thump.

Steven puts up the call. Sailor Mercury calls the play. Cure Bloom nods! She purses her lips - he's just grabbing the thing!? But...he's the only one who can. "OK!" she calls, and power floats out of nowhere, spiritual might sparkling around her as the Spirits of Earth respond to her call even from here.

Everyone else focuses their might on that shield. Cure Bloom squares her stance and - SCREAMS.

A blast of light flares around her, her whole body clenched as she draws in all the magical power her body can draw down, blasting, burning with light. There's no special attack call. She just flares with power, and surges in, shoving herself up and over the other infighters, feet colliding with the ceiling and then vaulting her down to SLAM into the shield, fist glowing with power as she collides. The power on her hand seems to flare on contact - and force Saki away, blasting her back down to the ground. But that's only so she can reorient, reposition - and come back in, swinging with her other hand this time.

COMBAT: Cure Bloom has joined the combo started by Fate Testarossa!
COMBAT: COMBO! Fate Testarossa, Mikoto Minagi, Endo Naoki, Yumi Ohzora, La Sirene de Diamant, and Cure Bloom have used Combo:
Chevaux et Moutons: Broken Divide, composed of Haken Saber, Obsidian Blade: Destruction, Meteor Absturz, Dark Radiance, Les
Mysteres, and Bloom Pursuing Strikes, on Hotaru Tomoe.
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe fails to counter Fate Testarossa, Mikoto Minagi, Endo Naoki, Yumi Ohzora, La Sirene de Diamant, and Cure
Bloom's Combo: Chevaux et Moutons: Broken Divide, taking 366 Fatigue damage!  Critical Hit!  Hotaru Tomoe is unable to keep
COMBAT: Hotaru Tomoe's counterattack, Black Crystal Desperation, fails to get through, doing 0 Fatigue damage to Fate Testarossa!
<Pose Tracker> Hotaru Tomoe [Infinity Institute (7)] has posed.

"STOP THAT!" protests Peridot, squawks emitting from her touchpad as she tries -- and fails -- to free the destabilizer from Steven's grip. The robonoids make hydraulic noises as they act as muscles and joints, but... it stays with him.

The energy stays, too. It seems like it's gradually infecting him, running up the veins of his arms, shedding yellow light as it heads inwards -- towards his heart -- and his Gem.

While the pilot keeps tapping frantically away, Amethyst comes for the robot. Her whip wraps up one of the legs like a spider's supper -- Sourisi gets the other with her chain -- and then Fuu's stiff breeze blows it right over (with a little help from the other two).

It hits the ground with a crash and Peridot yelps. "FULL POWER TO ENERGY BARRIER!" she yells (sideways, she's parallel with the floor right now), and there's that rising hum -- this time, going to defense, rather than offense. (Not that there are any turrets left after Fuu's arrow handled the third.)

And the force field shimmers into being, first a translucent green and then absolutely opaque, though it doesn't block sound and everyone can clearly hear Peridot as she mutters to herself while she types, swipes, and otherwise operates her systems.

"...ugh, it'll be easy they said...Crystal Gems...what even is a Steven...need more power...more power!"


It is difficult to forget about Ruby in any room she's in, but it turns out that Peridot, Peribot, Robonoids and Turrets are enough of a distraction to just barely make it possible.

Where is she -- what has she been doing all this time?

Oh. Now that the Peribot is on the ground, there she is.

Black energies crawl up her hands and crackle across her skin, frizzing out her hair and sparking in her eyes.

Because she's grabbed the end of the black crystal still sticking out of the cell door.

Her fingers slip against it -- it continues to inch towards Sapphire, to inch through. Her heels dig into the floor, turning the tiles beneath to molten slag, as she grunts and pulls--


And then, extending out behind it, the robot's other hand, the free hand, closes over the protruding bit of black crystal and allows itself to be stabbed.

Ruby is knocked back by the resulting explosion, but it's not fury but relief that glistens in her eyes as she looks up (even on the ground, Peribot is far taller than she) at the retreating hand, and the crystal being rapidly absorbed into it. Relief and exhaustion, and she doesn't get up right away, instead looking very dazed.

Green is draining from the cell door, leaving mere yellow in it's place.


And black is infecting the force field, which crackles with untold power. The hum becomes an ear-piercing screech.

Every strike of Pluto's Garnet Rod raises a vast shower of blue-black sparks as she patiently, fiercely indents it, just in the weak spot Sailor Mercury had pointed out -- and the single slash of Kasagami's blade raises a cracking noise.

And then it shatters, tumbling into huge, deadly shards of dark energy, unable to withstand even the approach of the others' combined assault, which warps the very air; Miroku, Bardiche, Fallen Stern and the fists of Pretty Cure crash in fearlessly past the destabilizer still making Steven sound like he's shouting through an electric fan, while the Witch of Lost Ivy and La Sirene's different, yet curiously similar, takes on 'the opposite of like' smashes the shards of backlash away from their friends and allies.

Also, the shards of the destabilizer, which crashes to the ground, neatly severed off the robot arm, exactly where Pluto and Kasagami had first weakened the field, exactly where Mercury had indicated was vulnerable.

There's little left of the Peribot, but Peridot, within, is a tangled sprawl of limbs and limbs and... limbs. She has a lot of them.

"YIKES!" she shrieks, before slamming herself into the floor of the UFO -- which at first seems like an odd echo of the explosioni she just endured, but no. Quick as a wink, silvery-green hull material rises around her in a sphere, then vanishes into the floor and is seamlessly gone.

There's a blue lady at the door of the cell. There's no seeing her face through her bangs, other than her lips, which are thin with worry. "RUBY! --Steven? You escaped... and saved the others... of course."

Hovering above the floor, she cuts an elegant figure in those vast skirts, seemingly serene. Nobody is fooled. She's all but vibrating with the need to get out.

<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (6)] has posed.

Steven just winces and and puts everyone one of his muscles to the test. The attacks fly in from every direction, but he has to hold this arm. He has to. Even as the energy grows worse and worse and worse. An intense wrongness begins to well up inside him. All this time is great pain, but something more begins to affect him. It could possibly be exactly what hurt the magical girls and boys assembled; he just has a resistance to it.

It grows, and grows. He screams in pain, and feels as though he is fit to suddenly burst with pain and agony--

When it stops. The parts he is holding go limp, and the pain subsides. The boy staggers backward, barely able to make sense of it all. Squeezing his eyelids shut from pain has caused them to dilate and see spots. The world is a blur for a good thirty seconds, and by the time they adjust, there is only ruin and defeated enemies.

"Wh... we did... it! Yeah!" he cheers. "OH! Sapphire!" She seemed to know his name. Huh. Jasper or Peridot must have said it to her. Or picked it up in the fight. Someone has removed the odd crystal in the cell wall, so he should be able to free her.

The boy hustles on up to the field, and for HOPEFULLY the last time, he carves an opening with his body for the small Gem to make her way out through. "Here... you go!" he says, funally stumbling back after she exits.

Steven is fairly tired of the color yellow for a while. No offense to anyone assembled, hopefully. "We probably should find a way out..."

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

Peridot crashes. Peridot needs more power.

There is not enough power in the world.

Mikoto screams, as that terrible, malevolent red energy explodes; it is as if the two of them are screaming in unison, though Miroku has no voice with which to speak. For the moment - for this one moment - it is even tolerable to be beside Endo and Fallen Stern. Even tolerable to follow the lead of the other Chevalier, that one so bitterly young. To strike with the dark one, la Sirene. Yumi's presence, in all this, is a comfort - so, strangely, is the Pretty Cure, unknown to her and yet screaming with the same battle-fury Mikoto knows so well.

And she breaks.

Mikoto roars her victory as they obliterate the Peribot, and there, inside, just as she'd said... is Peridot, weak without her tricks.

She doesn't hesitate, not even for a moment. Mikoto storms forward, Miroku swinging overhead, down in an executioner's swing - straight for Peridot's core. She doesn't even try to flee, just slams against the floor and -

- disappears -

- Miroku bites into the ground, obsidian burying several inches into the diamond-patterned floor, and Mikoto roars in frustration, now, a terrible vengeful sound. Words come to her - one singular, furious, agonised word. "NO!"

Peridot tried to destroy her, destroy all that she was, and Mikoto would kill her but she is gone and she cannot reach her!

Her eyes cast around, as if trying to figure out the trick, as if trying to find where Peridot has fled to. But it's no use - she's gone.

The blue woman, for now, is entirely outside of Mikoto's focus. It will take her a few long, angry moments, breath coming in gasps, before she calms and realises the focus of their rescue again. She growls, still clearly bothered - but she at least nods to Steven, returning her attention to the Gems.

<Pose Tracker> Hotaru Tomoe [Infinity Institute (7)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> Reunion https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ORIEK-QbbQ

Sapphire's eyes are invisible behind her hair, but nevertheless, Steven gets the distinct feeling of her gaze sweeping him up and down as he disrupts the force field. Then she smiles slightly, spreads her skirts in a sort of curtsey, and bows her way beneath his arm.

"Thank you, Steven," she murmurs gravely, before rushing towards Ruby -- who, despite being dazed on the ground a second ago, has summoned some final inner reserve of strength (or perhaps something was replenished upon seeing Sapphire freed) to slam into her with equal and opposite force.

They embrace. Blue hands tangle with red, then slide up to each other's shoulders. Their foreheads almost touch.

"That black thing... and Jasper... did they hurt you?" Ruby worries, running a hand through that long, silken hair.

"No, no, I'm okay." Sapphire reassurres her hastily. Her lips threaten an overjoyed smile, but cannot yet, not until she's sure... "Did they hurt you?"

Ruby just laughs, a cracked bark which nevertheless is among the most tender sounds ever heard. "Who cares?!" Tears well at her eyes, and one leaks down her cheek.

Sapphire stops it with her lips, then kisses the other cheek for good measure. "I do!"

Laughing harder, Ruby sweeps Sapphire right off the ground into a bridal carry, which startles a chuckle out of her as well. They spin together, their two laughs, the rusty and the sweet, the fuzzy warm and the gently cool, overlap, becoming a single voice.

A familiar voice--

--and there's a blinding white light suffusing them both, now, and they disappear within it entirely. Only their Gems remain, red and blue, amid the amorphous energy, and somehow they seem closer than ever even as they separate into hands, into--


Garnet, tall and proud and joyous. She lands hard in a way that is no way painful, rather a deliberate exertion, a stretch of the legs, still laughing, still loving.

She's missing her shades. It turns out that she has three eyes behind them, a purple one above the red and the blue. They are the friendliest eyes imaginable. They -- she -- glows, with contentment, with relief, with pride.

"STEVEN! Everyone! Thank you!"

The white light has faded -- but something brighter has taken its place -- Garnet's smile.

<Pose Tracker> Amethyst [None] has posed.

As Peribot topples, Amethyst prematurely celebrates. "Woo! Take that!" Then... stuff happened. Explodey stuff. And Peridot gets away. See Amethyst, that's why you need to focus! Her inner Pearl lectures her once more.

At least they freed Sapphire. "Oh hey, Sapphire! You're all right! You aren't hurt right? That dark stuff that 'sploded the nerdbot didn't hurt you right?"

It seems Ruby and Sapphire have more important matters to attend to - each other. Amethyst nearly tears up, barely holding it together as the two become one. "W...welcome back Garnet. "Oh shoot... um... Steven? You probably figured it out by now but Garnet..."

<Pose Tracker> Yumi Ohzora [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Ruby's shouting is, frankly, kind of scary--but Yumi is focusing now, pouring everything she can into her magic, pouring the memory of Garnet and the need to go home and the hope with Nori and--

Steven has it rough, it seems, but Yumi huffs for breath when the explosions finish, when their combination attack is done--and Peridot--"Just--give u--"

Mikoto slashes down and Yumi calls, "No! Mikoto-chan, don't!" in fear and worry that she might not be fast enough. "You don't have to--" She starts forward and then stops, blinking, as she looks to the one they just freed, to Sapphire and Ruby meeting again, and it's so tender and kind and--

And she just picks her up like--As they spin together, Yumi's face reddens and she starts to glance away. "G-glad you're--"

The light... The light, and there is a person Yumi knows, for all that they are on different sides now, someone who invited her home when she was lonely and let her meet her family. Someone who is not dead but--

"A-alive...?" She blinks in shock. "How... But..." Her mouth works open and closed, and instead of figuring it out she glances away again with even pinker cheeks. "T-that's so cool..."

She bites her lip--and then stands, off of her broom, closing the distance to reach towards Mikoto with her voice, "Hey..."

But she finds herself still looking over, in amazement. "Wow..."

<Pose Tracker> Sailor Mercury [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Sailor Mercury nods at Steven, accepting his offer to help her to her feet. Aside from getting the wind knocked from her and maybe a bruised tailbone she is relatively unharmed. But quickly she realizes Steven's plan and it's too late to stop him as he rushes in. The senshi can only watch as he wrestles with it, knowing that if she were to take a hit, it could prove deadly.

Seeing the yellow energy course through Steven's body again makes her cringe. How much could he really take? Gem or not...

As their new strategy comes to fruition, Mercury stands back for now and watches the others attack the Peribot in earnest. Even with so much left to figure out with Pearl and the other Sailor Guardians still missing, she actually feels just a little more hopeful than she did hours earlier. If they can continue to work together maybe they can find a way out of this.

As Peridot falls over, Mercury can hear her working and then her eyes fall on Sapphires cell. "Ruby!!!" Her eyes widen as the red girl is holding the crystal in her hands trying to stop it from hurting Saphhire. What comes next is, well, she's not really sure what to feel as the robot takes the crystal and the cell door returns back to the same yellow barrier as before.

The noise is deafening as she watches the destabilizer shatter around them and there is little left of the Peribot. Within, it's just the same girl she saw on the beach before the abduction but she's only there for a second before she disappears into a green bubble! Mecury just looks at Steven and the others, "Well...I am glad that worked but..." She stops short as Steven goes to help Sapphire out.

The reunion that follows next actually brings a tear to Mercury's eyes. She can't help but feel the tremendous amount of love that passes between Ruby and Sapphire as they hug one another and spin each other around. Mercury smiles even bigger when she sees the two gems combine and Garnet is once again standing before them.

It's hard for the young woman to contain her look of surprise though. Even if she didn't know Garnet, just seeing someone she thought was dead brought back just like that is a lot to take in. "I-I can't believe it... she's back..." This was definitely a turn of events she couldn't have expected and she looks back at Steven, "You are... amazing Steven-kun." She walks over and ruffles his hair a little.

<Pose Tracker> Steven Universe [Juuban Public School (6)] has posed.

At least Sapphire is safe. She and Ruby seem so happy to be together again. "Definitely worth the rescue. Now we should... uh." Steven's attention is cut off when the two start glowing. He recognizes that telltale glow. Merging of form. Fusion. But who are they becoming...? Shapes begin to form. Familiar ones. Broad shoulders. Tall build. Square hair. The boy's eyes are both misting up and full of stars by the time Garnet makes he fabulous reappearance.

"Garnet!" The boy exclaims. "Y-You're a fusion?!"

It seems even he didn't know.

"I-I'm so happy to see you..." The boy says. He walks up to her, looks up at those three colorful eyes...

And gives her the biggest hug ever. He will also try to round Amethyst up in it! "I didn't remember about the gems... I thought..." She was gone. The stress of everything made him forget how Gems regenerate. The boy turns to everyone else. "Thank you, everyone." A look back toward Garnet. "Pearl is still missing. I don't think she is even on the ship. We have been everywhere."

<Pose Tracker> Fuu Hououji [Infinity Institute (10)] has posed.

The Peribot goes down hard, the Destabilizer is removed from it, and Peridot herself flees just like any recurring boss after you beat it in an encounter that isn't the last one. (And sometimes when it is.)

The Wind Knight doesn't have much in her to care, though; as satisfying as she would find it to drive that Destabilizer into Peridot and see what it does to *her* ... well, the weapon itself is smashed, so it's kind of a moot point. And maybe it would have been more vindictive than the Wind Knight considers itself.

More importantly, the way is clear to get to Sapphire's cell - and finally, the Magic Knight of Wind realizes *that's* where the ice was somehow coming from. "So you were helping us, even from there?" she muses, smiling sheepishly. "I'm sorry we weren't able to help you sooner. Give me a few --"

She started to move towards the control panel; Steven obviates the need to do so, although the Wind Knight cringes a bit to watch him blocking the force field with his own body; it doesn't hurt him the way it would have hurt her, and is far faster. She smiles in relief as Ruby and Sapphire are reunited ...

... and reunited is very much the proper term, as Garnet is reborn. Now, the Magic Knight of Wind can only stare in awe. "Garnet-san ... when you were stabbed with the Destabilizer, I thought - possibly we all thought - you were lost for good. I'm so glad that I was wrong ..." She trails off with a breathless little noise of mirth, not even a proper laugh. "Those are not words I say often," she admits ruefully. "But in any case, welcome back. I can't think of when I've been more glad to see somebody."

Their chances of winning - of getting home - *must* have just gone way, way up. But it's still too early to relax, isn't it ... ?

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

As Peribot topples due to the combined efforts of Fuu, Amethyst and herself, Sourisi still holds on tightly onto her magical chain, not giving the pilot a chance to regain her footing. And with being so close, she got to see just how destructive and powerful, the combined efforts of magical girls and boys can truly be. That, and it makes a satisfying conclusion to the whole fight, to see at least one of their captors defeated.

Pulling her tonfa back from the wreckage and dissipating the chain, the mouse girl starts to turn to look at Sapphire's cell to see just how they could get her free, when a yelp from behind tells her that while the green Gem may be down, she is by no means out for the count.

The goop still on Sourisi still clings and slows her down just enough that the flying weapon only passes through air before returning to its' wielder, having just missed Peridot as she apparently made her escape. "Awww, she got away!" There's other things to worry about, like the fact the red hot Gem looks like she's about to try kicking down the Destabilizer field if she could try.

When Steven reaches into the field itself, Sourisi extends a hand outward, trying to stop him! "Wait, Steven-san, do-...oh? how are you doing that?" It does makes sense how he was able to tussle with the massive Destabilizer that Peridot was using, but not how he is able to withstand the energies coming from that devastating weapon.

As Ruby and Sapphire are reunited at last, Sourisi can't help but let out a soft 'awww' as the two reunite. It reminds the Miraculous user almost like Kasagami and Sailor Pluto in a way!...though Kasagami and Pluto don't turn into a mass of energy while hugging each other tightly.

Confusion on her face turns into shock as a familiar form, and tonfa clattered to the floor as Garnet re-emerges once more, whole and herself. "But I thought she..." Letting out a long shuddering breath, Sourisi lets go of some of the grief that has been aching inside of her heart these stressful...hours? Days? By some sort of miracle, Ruby and Sapphire are no longer yet greater than before, and a Gem she thought dead and gone was only temporarily separated.

<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [Infinity Institute (5)] has posed.

Peridot can protest all they want as they try to Peristop her. But while it's a relief that the crystal is now no longer threatening Sapphire - the forcefield just became that much more threatening. They pour on the counter-force - shattering it into shards of dark energy - and thankfully the destabilizer is put out of commission by Pluto and Kasagami.

Leaving just Peridot.

Fate isn't so bloodthirsty as to charge her right away, but they look she gives her is cold when it comes to her plight.

Instead as she escapes - she just notes to Yumi - "We did." Nori and Endo she kind of wants to give a high five to her fellow Chevaliers here but decides that now is just not the time.

Instead she just lands - watching the red gem and the blue gem.

It's touching. It's sweet. There's a smile that crosses her lips in these moments that despite all the sorrow of Garnet's death - this moment is just genuine and pure. Seeing the love the two share for each other.

But then-




It's like a small miracle in front of her eyes. And she blurts out - both startled and surprised and - "Garnet!? You're... you're..."

It feels like all the sorrow has been wrenched out of her onto her face in that moment. The tears that start to form and fall immediately as if it were released right out of her and changed to joy.

There was something maternal about the way Garnet had always treated her. Something that makes her want to hug her - an impulse born out of that sorrow changed to joyous relief.

And yet she doesn't. She believes right now that belongs to Steven, and Steven alone. But in this moment of miracles for her she offers while quietly choked up, "...t-thank goodness! I thought... I didn't know what to think... you're..."

Inhaling once noisily through her nostrils, she tries to compose herself a little, then smiles at the wondrous Fusion to say, "...welcome back. You... you were really missed."

<Pose Tracker> La Sirene de Diamant [Ohtori Academy (10)] has posed.

YIKES is right, la Sirene thinks as she breathes out through clenched teeth. She slouches forwards, drawing herself upwards. She wants to slouch, to fall, to collapse. She feels tight and cold in her belly. The blue woman is freed - another prisoner.

La Sirene's eyes turn towards them. Ruby is ferocious. They need the help they can get, she thinks, and perhaps this Sapphire one is too --

She sees a tear wet Ruby's cheek. Naturally, it sparkles in her vision, like a jewel (appropriately enough). Then the two of them laugh and a miracle happens.

Garnet is there. It has to be a trick, la Sirene thinks, but no - other than her glasses, it's her. Perhaps she's more forthcoming, but then she immediately recognizes everyone. The third eye is noted by some abstract recording process in the back of la Sirene's mind as she finds the strength in her legs giving way. She sags forwards, landing in a flat kneel and making a sort of "aa, aa," noise with her mouth, hands coming up to clutch at her cheeks.

Now it is her turn to weep. Her mouth contorts with joy and shock as the sheer surprise wrings tears from her, covering parts of her face in writhing and implausible recognition.

Batiste is less wracked. He debarks from his stern and sturdy vessel and scampers forwards, running several hopping circles around Steven. "What! What is this!? Impossible! Astonishing! Uncanny! Could it be true?! A fusion, you say!? Steven, this is miraculous! Can all of the Crystal Gems do such wondrous things?!"

He settles back on his patoot to regard Garnet. His paws clasp before him. "O, my comrade, welcome back!"

La Sirene drags herself upright, half-turning her face as she sniffs and blinks away tears as best she can.

<Pose Tracker> Amethyst [None] has posed.

"Uh... yeah, that." The truth about Garnet was revealed. She's pulled into the group hug, squeezing tightly. "I was so worried about you two, you one, Ruby, Sapphire, Garnet... but I couldn't tell Steven the truth before you did! I mean.." She looks away, softly smiling. "I knew you'd be fine. You're one tough cookie. Not even milk can harm you! Eheh..."

<Pose Tracker> Endo Naoki [Juuban Public School (12)] has posed.

Endo takes a step back once the robot falls, lowering his weapon and taking a breath. He glances at the spot Peridot once stood, his eyes following Mikoto's blade as it clangs into the floor that the enemy gem recedes into. There's no way to follow, nothing more he can do, and his lips pull into a tight frown. But there's something else to distract him soon enough.

His eyes widen as Ruby and Sapphire are reunited, taken aback to find--

"Garnet!" His voice leaps with joy at the sight of the familiar gem, a mix of relief and wonder. "I thought--" He pauses, unsure of what to say, before deciding on: "I'm glad you're okay!"

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

That fiery Araki eloquence lights up her heart. There's a martial comfort to be found in the way their attacks interweave, as seamlessly as Pluto and Kasagami have ever fought together. It feels so good to be in synch again. Having made way for that single glorious strike, the senshi watches its forceful execution with shining eyes.

All around them the mahou strike, coordinate, cooperate -- they all strike according to the perceptions and directions of Sailor Mercury, behind the bravery of the boy Steven Universe. The tactical mind of Pluto admires how well it all comes together from such disparate, even conflicting, sources. The damage they all wreak, between the entanglement teamwork and the sheer concentrated attacks, hits just right, in just the places Mercury directed.

Down goes the Peribot! ...and Peridot gets away. Sailor Pluto finds she can live with that disappointment. Bigger things are happening.

Ruby and Sapphire twirl together and the senshi feels her mouth stretching to a warm, broad smile, unfettered by exhaustion or emotional burdens. She reaches for Kassie's hand, not wanting to say a word or even move too much to disrupt whatever spell the red and blue weave before them all.

And it is magic they are working, because it is love.

Even so, the emergence of further miracle is nothing the senshi dreamed possible. Garnet: whole again? Garnet, triumphant, energized. The two smaller Gems... It makes no sense at all and perfect sense, all at once. Steven says something about 'fusion' and she files it away for later.

If the Guardian of Time's eyes are a bit brighter than usual, well, maybe that is just the contrast with the exhaustion that sinks in now that combat is done.

<Pose Tracker> Cure Bloom [Infinity Institute (9)] has posed.

Cure Bloom's powerful punch forces her back one more time, and this time she lets herself stop. The light around her gutters out, the Pretty Cure of Earth huffing for air. She pushes herself upright, watching the two Gems reunite. Her hands land on her hips. This seems sorta personal, she thinks distantly, and self-consciously starts to look away, finding it pulling at her heart for reasons not entirely clear to the girl with the pineapple hair.

And then the light washes outward. She snaps back to attention, eyes widening. "I...huh!?" Saki stammers out. She hadn't known Garnet that well, certainly not enoughto be quite so crushed as she knew La Sirene had been. Still, she can't resist her face splitting into a grin. "Now..." she murmurs, mostly to herself; she shifts on her heels to look back the way they came. "We get home." Cure Bloom's own other half is waiting.

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

Yumi yells at Mikoto not to and Mikoto is so, so unreachable in this moment that she is not even shaken by the call of an ally to stop. But it's fruitless.

There is anger enough for two, in Mikoto, as the realisation that Peridot has escaped settles over her heart. Breath hisses through grit teeth in utter frustration, and the gaze which comes to Steven and Sapphire and Ruby is, in a word, unkind.

She is not happy.

But there's something about the reunion between those two - the red and blue twirling each other, kissing each other, speaking in love and concern for each other - which softens her harsh edges immediately. Mikoto shifts Miroku's grip to one hand; the other curls at her chest, over her heart, as she gasps, and the sound is unlike any she has made in the battle thus far, hushed and small.

It's... so strange, because she sees that outpouring of affection and she thinks of someone and it hurts in a different way entirely to what she's felt on this ship so far.

Mikoto shakes her head, swallowing at a lump which has formed in her throat.

There's no time to think about that, because they are twirling again, they are merging, and it is just like the tall woman on the beach but it is different because this is -

She stiffens, again. Her. An enemy, and yet the woman who confused her so with her maternal attitude towards them all. It feels wrong, to be thanked so genuinely by her. To see her with joy, and pride, and relief. She should look at her with enmity, not...

Besides, she died. She died, but she is... here. Somehow, she is here. The gems. Somehow... the gems.

Yumi's approach is a boon, and Mikoto glances to her, and confusion and uncertainty is writ plain on her face. She reaches out a hand, to take hers. She needs someone to steady her - not her stance, unflinching, but her spirit, unsure.

"... yeah," she says, eventually, awkwardness in her tone. "Yeah..."

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

The peribot is held in place and yet, the world seems to be chaos to Kassie's perspective. She crashes down even after Ruby's stabbing of the Peribot, taking advantage of the openinings that all around her have helped to create. That cracking noise is vindication, and that shield finally shatters into deadly shards.

Kasagami howls as she's peppered by the backblast of her own sword and Pluto's point-guard assault. She lands on her back, tucks into a pained roll, and slides back on bare feet. Despite how tired she is, she draws her sword back, ready to re-engage.

But the ship itself seems to bail out the pilot, and the Peribot is no more. The blue young Gem woman is there to be saved. Kasagami leans on her wooden sword for a second, vaguely giving in to exhaustion.

Mikoto is alert in the aftermath. Steven cares for the release of Sapphire despite his pain, and Kasagami for a second doesn't know where to focus her attention. But it's the duo of Red and Blue that truly focuses Kassie's attention.

Ruby and Sapphire embrace. They tangle hands, foreheads nearly twain, and those words are as intimate as any she's shared with those she most closely loves.

Kasagami finds herself smiling, mentally cheering the two Gems on with all of her heart. The sight of those only has her eye turning to a certain green-haired dearest in their midst.

And then, there's Garnet. Kasagami blinks, once, twice, trice.

'Gems regenerate'.

Kasagami takes that hand offered to her, and then her arms are around Pluto far more closely. Magic indeed. Kasagami looks on in a mixture of surprise and disbelief as Garnet once again walks among them.

"How are you...!?" Kasagami Araki may well need a minute. Gem fusions seems to strike this Duelist particularly hard. And so?

She leans in closer to Sailor Pluto, as her mind races to understand what she just witnessed, no matter how joyful.

<Pose Tracker> Hotaru Tomoe [Infinity Institute (7)] has posed.

Garnet hugs Steven back fiercely, and Amethyst too, and honestly anyone who's in arm's reach who looks like they want a hug is encompassed by it. She has enough arm for everyone, even if she has to cheat a little and lengthen them momentarily.

"Everyone," she repeats. "I'm so glad you're all okay."

As the embrace ends, she fondly leans against Amethyst, cheek to cheek, then ruffles Steven's hair.

"I appreciate it, Amethyst. Steven, we didn't want you meeting us here like this... but sometimes life is better than plans."

Straightening, she looks around at the group... and becomes grave as she notices the missing faces. "Sometimes it's worse, too. Pearl, and Mars and Venus and Jupiter... I think I know where they are."

She kneels, now, in front of Steven, and places her lips on his forehead. A sparkle passes between them there, and a great rush of visions through his mind -- even just being nearby, there's a palpable rush of time.

"I need you to go with the others and find them... inside the bigger spaceship, the one outside this one."

She places a palm on a panel, and a perfectly round hole opens in the hull -- effortlessly creating the exit everyone had looked for, for so long. It seems it can only be summoned; it doesn't exist in any single place, at any single time.

Outside is only darkness, and a lot of it.

With tones of absolute authority -- but also confidence in the measured wisdom of her own decision -- she assigns tasks. "Amethyst, Endo, Fate, Fuu, and Yumi Ohzora, you all secure the Control Bridge. It's right through that door. And guard the place until we all get back. We're going to need this ship intact if we want to escape."

Stepping through the door she's just created, Garnet pops her jaw to the left, then to the right, and summons her mirrored shades with a snap of her fingers.

"I'll take care of Jasper."