2020-02-12 - MGLN SeekerS: Breakfast at Hayate's

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MGLN SeekerS: Breakfast at Hayate's

The mages wounded by their counterparts recuperate at Yagami House, where Ren cares for the people, and Hayate the Devices -- who have a dangerous request for their masters (which is onscreened, in a flashback, here)...


Lera Camry, Setsuna Higashi, Fate Testarossa, Signum Yagami, Ren Aizawa, Endo Naoki, Shamal Yagami, Vita Yagami, Hayate Yagami


Chofu Suburban District

OOC - IC Date:

2/12/2020 - 08-06-2015

*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+ Chofu Suburban District (#508) +*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*+*
  Chofu was built on a vast natural terrace that reinforces the town against    
  the slope down to the sea. It has its own town limits, and it is large        
  enough that you can get anything you need without leaving them. It has        
  lovely houses and apartments, well-appointed town centers, and beautiful      
  green fields around it. But the Tama River that flows through and past Chofu  
  feeds into the main city, and the great splay-legged power lines that follow  
  its course at a safe distance link town to metropolis. This is and is not     
  Just fifteen minutes (and a scant 230 yen) by high-speed rail from Shinjuku   
  Station, Chofu is one of the largest "bed towns" for central Tokyo. Most of   
  the people who live here work in the Special Wards, the short commute buying  
  them vastly cheaper, less cramped lodgings, though some maintain local        
  businesses. While this makes Chofu a suburb of inner Tokyo, it is certainly   
  still Tokyo, and the expansive lawns and sprawling development one envisions  
  when thinking of a suburb are not to be found here. Still, there are no       
  skyscrapers here, and freestanding houses replace the massive apartment       
  buildings of Tokyo.                                                           
  Chofu's river banks host old-fashioned festivals that draw many from          
  surrounding areas at the proper times of year. In contrast, Chofu is also     
  home to the headquarters of JAXA, the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency.  
  Though Japan is not yet involved in manned space travel, those interested in  
  Japan's satellite or other space-related technology can find ample materiel   
  for research or wrongdoing.                                                   
<Pose Tracker> Pink Moon Stick [Admin] has posed.

Sunlight filters into Yagami House gently, as though even the heavens know to be soft, to have a light touch, when awakening its occupants today. It drifts like golden sand through the floor-to-ceiling white drapes of the living room, and sparkles and warms the people sleeping on couches, on recliners, on futons, on cots. (Pretty much all the furniture in the house has been moved downstairs to accommodate everyone.)

There's still a faint antiseptic smell from the various bandages and ointments around, but it's been overtaken by a promisingly homey scent of rice porridge, burbling away to itself on the kitchen stove. Zafira's tail slowly wags back -- and forth, back -- and forth, as he stirs. The whole house still feels full of magic, too, but this, too, has transmuted, from the rather spectacular (if desperate) expenditure of mana for healing magic last night, to... something else. Something more difficult to recognize the feeling of. It awaits recognition, but doesn't demand it, for now.

The house is safe, at least for the moment. That might be because Nanoha Takamachi is sitting on the roof keeping watch along with Chrono Harlaown and Yuuno Scrya, who cast some kind of veil to keep this place under wraps. Hard to be in better hands than those.

It's very quiet.

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.


Lera wakes up a little slowly. Eyes blink open; when they do, she recognizes where she is. There is a subtle relaxing, the moment she does. She knows the Yagami household. She knows, in truth, that she is safe here. She lets out a low sigh, and then she sits up. She is in a medical gown, now; her clothes were dirtied messes, after the fight.

She licks at chapped lips, and then glances around the room. The other beds, who is in them; the other people around. Then, her eyes widen sharply, at the last thing she remembers.

Another Soaring Sky -- and this one stabbing into her own weapon. "Sky?" she asks, a little weakly. "...everyone?"

<Pose Tracker> Setsuna Higashi [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Setsuna Higashi cannot quite place the feeling in the air at the moment, as she looks across the room into nothing in particular on the wall, having taken a free cot to finally sleep after all that happened. Sleep, instead of just be unconscious; it's not really the same thing. She doesn't stir as she does in any case, at first, quiet.

She silently processes her location and remembers after a moment, feeling better at least for the others she can see around even before she remembers the details of who's probably still out watching.

She doesn't actually speak up until she hears the question, and then, "Lera?" she asks back. "Oh..." She bites her lip. She can't quite find the words yet about much.

<Pose Tracker> Fate Testarossa [Infinity Institute (5)] has posed.
<SoundTracker> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mrUEokJ3Mk

In that liminal space between sleeping and waking, the first sign that something is wrong is that she's looking straight up.

There's no pressure on her right shoulder and side. Her arms aren't laced around the opposite pillow at the diagonal.

She's tucked in, she's laying with her long hair meticulously laid out to the side so she's not laying upon it. She's comfortable enough, but it's not the comfort she's used to.

Or at least she was comfortable, until suddenly the soreness kicks in, causing her eyes to twitch fully open.

"Hn..." Fate flinches relatively quietly, not one to complain loudly when she's in pain. Her mouth dry, the child desiring nothing more than a drink of water in those first few moments of consciousness.

It's Lera's voice she hears first. "Lera..." Then another. "Setsuna..."

She says each in turn, relieved, suddenly knowing something she wants far more than water. She doesn't try to get up right away. Instead she merely seems to be trying to assess the situation as she turns her head, one way, then another - trying to eye them from her place on the cot she lays upon.

Then she asks, smaller. Like she's hoping for a positive answer with bated breath. "... Did we all make it?"

<Pose Tracker> Signum Yagami [None] has posed.

Signum is on a cot. Waking up is like remembering a butt-kicking.

It isn't the neatest analogy, but the full body pain - the exhaustion, the confusion, that momentary flicker-snap attempt to swing Laevatain with sufficient vigor and skill to protect Shamal, to protect all of them...

Signum has rarely felt like this. Because when she has felt the way she did before everything, she did not wake up in the same location.

"... hello, Camry," Signum murmurs. She then tries to laugh, when she hears Setsuna Higashi speak. She pushes herself on one elbow - her face contorts - she settles back down.

"Fate... please forgive my poor hospitality."

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (12)] has posed.

"I'll get more towels, Hayate-chan!"

With a quick turn on her heel Ren sets off for the laundry room to do as she says. On her way there her eyes catch sight of the clock on the wall. Really, she can't be too shocked she's lost track of time. Being an impromptu nurse for her injured friends is all she's focused on for the past several hours.

Reaching the laundry room and grabbing the towels, she makes haste back to the makeshift hospital wing in the Yagami House, all the while trying to keep her mind focused on taking care of everyone instead of blaming herself for not being there to help in the battle that put them all here.

Ren rounds the corner, and skids to a halt upon the sight of her injured friends starting to stir -- finally. "Ahh! Everyone!" She drops the towels and covers her mouth, feeling tears start to prickle at her eyes. "Y-you're alright now!"

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

Endo is taking up space in a reclining chair currently set in extreme lounge. His sleep has been uncomfortable, filled with rumblings and the occasional uncomfortable shift. When he does awake it's with a muted groan.

He would like to rise to greet this new morning, but he finds rather quickly that movement is an unhappy option, one that sends pain shooting down his side and back. So he elects to remain lounging.

"Aaah." He says, in response to the words around. More effort musters up something clearer after: "I'm okay." This is not exactly correct.

"Ren-chan?" Most of the voices he knows are now accounted for, something that gives a dull sense of relief.

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"Hey, Setsuna," Lera says. She puts a hand over her forehead, fighting off a headache that seems to be mounting. "Fate... and Signum, too." Her eyes drift to the side, and she feels a headache there, still. Too much mana use, she thinks; sometimes it gives her a bad one.

"...I think so," she says. She looks over, sideways, at Endo. Her eyes blink a couple of times, and she smiles. "Hey, Endo-san."

Then, she looks -- and blinks at Ren, as she skids. She looks truly, fully relieved to see her slide into view; Lera's smile breaks into a full-fledged grin, and she almost rushes out of bed. She restrains herself. She doesn't doubt that would be a bad idea to rush into.

"Ren-chan!" she says. "Y-You're here, too! I'm glad..."

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

There's this dull blink of Fate's eyes at Signum's statement, like she's uncomprehending of the problem, before just a faint curve of her dry lips and a simple, "What are you talking about? There's nothing to forgive."

Ren's big entrance though causes Fate to simply look up from the direction she lays, and note, "There you are Ren... we were worried."

It doesn't sound admonishing. Simply, matter of fact in a way.

Falling silent, she just lays there perhaps giving Endo and Ren time...

<Pose Tracker> Setsuna Higashi [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

Setsuna makes no obvious complaints for the moment, instead starting to push herself upward, brushing her purple hair back out of her face and blinking around red-eyed at the room--and puts on a smile at Signum's attempt at laughter, before she looks across Fate, Endo...

"Ren-chan," Setsuna greets her, rather less surprised than some others, and finishes sitting up to rotate at the waist back and forth, stretching a little against stiffness.

She quiets again, looking around at the talking going on but not joining in much more than she already has, yet.

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (12)] has posed.

What follows next is Ren grabbing the dropped towels and rushing around to everyone who is awake, making sure they're comfortable and not in need of anything at the moment.

"Everyone...!" She repeats again, resisting the urge to hug them lest you aggravate any still-healing injuries. She at least brushes an affectionate hand against Endo's forehead, which the other reaches down to squeeze his hand which is thankfully uninjured.

"I'm so glad you're all awake!" She pauses at Fate's words, then turns to face the younger mage. "What... what happened? If you're able to tell me..."

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

Endo's hand squeezes against Ren's, which is an act he can perform without too much discomfort. "I'm glad you're ok, we were all worried." A meager smile comes with this.

"The last thing I saw was another Stern." The boy says, wincing at the memory. "I don't know...what happened after that." His head tilts hopefully toward the others in the room, and then toward the more able-bodied Setsuna.

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Lera flashes a smile at Setsuna, then she nods. "There... were, um. These copies of our Devices. Sky, Stern, and... Heraut." She glances down. "They all showed up, by the end. And they did something with Stern and Sky--like they... merged with them, for a second."

She sighs, hand on the back of her neck.

Then, Lera glances at Setsuna, if for just a second. That, she decides, is enough of a relief. She tilts her head to the side, looking at her for a second, before mouthing the question: 'You okay?'


<Pose Tracker> Signum Yagami [None] has posed.

Signum turns her head to Fate, and she almost, but doesn't quite, smile.

"Aizawa," Signum says, from the cot. "The situation is as Lera describes. However, their fighting power is substantial. We were defeated decisively."

A second passes.

"Ah... have you remained in contact with Heraut?"

How undignified, to ask these questions while laying down, Signum thinks. Yet how worse would it be to beg for aid to sit? (Do I even want to sit? Signum thinks further. Honestly, no, but if this conversation continues, I must endure it...)

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

Fate pauses for a moment as Ren asks. She has theories, but decides to discard them to just discuss the facts. Lera fills them in on some. So she decides to simply fill in the gaps.

"The identity of the mages wielding the devices are unknown at this time. Heraut communicated in a distorted way - and his objective was to destroy all Belkans. Stern's wielder ambushed Endo and defeated him. Heraut and Stern began to argue, and their mages turned upon each other, but they seemed to have the mutual objective of bringing us all down despite their disagreements. Their power was..."

The child shifts uncomfortably to look Signum's way.

"...well. It is as she says. Their results speak for themselves. What... Lera said about them merging with devices - or that another mage wielding Soaring Sky arrived is new information to me."

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (12)] has posed.

"What?" Ren says in response to Lera's words. "Copies...?" She takes a moment to look down at Heraut in his standby form -- the silver ornate ring on her finger. Signum speaks up next, and Ren's head snaps up and over to the Belkan knight.

"I don't understand...!" She exclaims, clenching her fists and biting her lip momentarily before relaxing again. "Heraut was with me the whole time! Hayate-chan has him right now -- with the rest of the devices. He's just as confused..." The thought of someone wielding a device impersonating Heraut and doing such horrible things to her friends fills her with ice cold dread.

Fate adds more details to what happened, prompting Ren to nod solemnly in response, the shock of it all still very much evident. "I see..." The amount of raw power these wielders had at their disposal is frightening...

<Pose Tracker> Shamal Yagami [None] has posed.

Those who know Shamal well will find the sight of her without earrings in unusual, if not so unusual as seeing her bandaged. Her forehead is wrapped thoroughly, the gauze disappearing and reappearing as it passes around her blonde hair. A large square bandage covers one cheek, and her mint-green pajama tunic doesn't fully conceal the sarashi-like wrapping of bandage over her shoulder. One of her arms rests across her torso to accomodate its sling.

All the talking has begun to disturb Shamal's closed eyelids. When at last her pale lashes part, she stares at the ceiling for a while. They have guests. It's morning. Oh goodness, there's no breakfast. Hayate must be working on it all alone, and for so many people. That won't do. A sort of slow-motion, sleepy anxiety works through Shamal until she tries to sit up, whereupon her body jangles like a shaken ring of keys, and she lets her head sink into the pillow again.

Oh. That's right. She didn't die.

She hasn't been able to catch up to the conversation yet, but there's a question she wants answered. Did it work? Was it worth it?

"V... vita?" she asks. "Is she..."

<Pose Tracker> Setsuna Higashi [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

"I'm also glad we're awake..."

Setsuna lets the others handle exxplanations again for the moment, reviewing mentally her recollection of events as compared with what the others saw. Amidst this, Lera glances her way, and the purple-haired girl nods shallowly twice in quick succession, putting on a small smile to answer the question.

The smile fades at all these talk of copies and everything, though. "I don't understand either," Setsuna adds, and looks over Shamal as she starts to stir. "She's okay, the last I saw. I lost track of where everyone went after I laid down, but she came back with us."

<Pose Tracker> Pink Moon Stick [Admin] has posed.

"Breakfast," announces Zafira abruptly, his timing excellent for easing Shamal's concerns.

He's standing at the edge of the living room with a tray filled with bowls of rice porridge (each garnished with a strawberry-sliced flower), spoons, and cloth napkins whose bunny-rabbit pattern matches his apron (one guess who picked these out).

He moves around distributing food to those who can sit up to eat it. Those who can't, he leaves it nearby. Once he's bowlless, he will return to silently offer, with a grave, solemn doggy-eyed expression, to feed anyone who doesn't feel up to picking up a spoon.

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"They were strong, y'know? And... the mages, they seemed to be... uh. Like rag dolls?" Lera asks. She shakes her head, then she looks down. "...I know, Ren-chan. It's... this whole thing. It's really spooky."

Lera sits up the rest of the way, then moves. Her legs hang over the edge of the bed. She takes a second to steady herself. She looks back at Setsuna -- starts to smile -- and then she looks at Shamal.

Her eyes blink a couple of times. "Miss Shamal," she says. "I--I think Vita's okay. Let's ask someone, okay? Maybe we can--"


"Aaah, good timing, Zafira!" Lera says, taking her bowl. She starts to wolf some of it down. "I'm so hungry, y'know?" A moment passes. "Hey, Zafira... is Vita okay?"

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

Endo squints. "There was a Sky too?" He asks, this news causing muted alarm. "Ah" He shifts, though he doesn't make it into any more of an 'up' position than he was previously.

The arrival of food beings a short pause, though Endo declines Zafira's assistance. He'll get to it eventually. When he feels like lifting more parts of himself.

"It was kind of like before," He says to Lera's mention of the device's wielders. "Back on the spaceship, there were suits of armor using those other Sterns. Not actual people. I don't think there were people behind the fake devices either." It's strange to call them fake, when both the two that he saw were easily outputting more power than the ones he and Ren have be using for so long.

<Pose Tracker> Signum Yagami [None] has posed.

Shamal and Fate, as well as the rising tide of wakefulness, give Signum strength. "Mm," she states to Fate, her eyes turning towards Ren as she reveals a mystery. "Then," she says, "that eliminates that possibility." Then there is a warm smell...


Signum steels herself, pushes on her elbows, winces, and turns herself. Her back ends up against a small patch of wall near a bookshelf, but it is good enough for her weight to rest on, and after the motion the pain is not bad. She exhales, and accepts the bowl, with measured slowness. Three bites in, her posture loses its slouch.

"Peculiar," she answers Endo. "Were those individuals defeated? Did they have access to Stern's data, or only to combat techniques?"

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

"Shamal... you're awake..."

As Endo talks about the ship, Fate speaks up again, "I had wondered if there was a link to our time on the ship - but the appearance of someone wielding Sky..."

The girl trails off, seeming uncertain what to think anymore about how that might be linked. Instead seeming to try to catch onto another thread of thought.

"... noone wielding Laevatein, or Graf Eisen, or Klarwind showed up either. And Bardiche is... even with his Belkan cartridge system..."

Again she seems to not know what to think... and instead decides to simply focus on the breakfast that Zafira has brought in.

"Thank you for the meal."

Propping herself up on one elbow, she flinches, but doesn't complain, as she pivots one leg, then the other off the cot.

Taking up the bowl, she takes up the spoon and starts dutifully eating the rice porridge.

... anyone watching her might notice that she's working on trying to keep the strawberry flower intact as long as possible, eating around it.

It's possible that she's really touched by the extra effort that went into the garnish.

Instead of asking on Vita herself, she waits for Zafira to answer...

<Pose Tracker> Pink Moon Stick [Admin] has posed.

Zafira grunts affirmatively.

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (12)] has posed.

Shamal's awakening prompts Ren to move over to her, "Do you need anything, Shamal-san?" She's still very much in Nurse Mode despite dealing with such shocking revelations. When Shamal asks about Vita instead she instinctively answers her.

"Ah! She's alright, thank goodness! All of you are..."

Zafira's prompt arrival with food is a welcome one from the looks of things. "Ahh! Thank you Zafira-san!" She clasps her hands together and smiles, padding on over to Endo again, listening as he and Lera detail their attackers more.

"Oh...!" The mention of those "Hollow Knights" from the spaceship makes her shiver. "Yes! We beat them!" She pipes up in response to Signum, then hesitates. "But..." The possibility of there being more of them gives her pause.

It's Fate she turns to next, taking in what she says. "So it was Heraut, Stern, and Sky...? No others?" Now that is suspicious.

<Pose Tracker> Setsuna Higashi [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

"Oh," Setsuna replies to the matter of the spaceship, to those back then. It definitely makes her stop and think, again--not that she's stopped doing much of that anyway, so far. She puzzles away at it as Fate and Ren talk about who wasn't there, accepting the bowl from Zafira with a, "Thank you!" and looking down at it to inhale a little more shallowly than she usually would.

"No... But the other Heraut claimed his purpose was to destroy all Belkans." She then takes the spoon and starts eating, never one to put off food any longer than she has to.

<Pose Tracker> Shamal Yagami [None] has posed.

"Lera-chan... oh, you're both here." Smiling at Lera and Setsuna, Shamal lifts her good arm to her face, gently feeling around the bandage with her fingers. She sets that hand down, mildly embarrassed, when Ren approaches her.

"It ought to be me offering you something," Shamal sighs. "...water would be a kindness, Ren-chan. I don't think I'm ready to eat yet." She gazes past Ren to the bowl sitting patiently for her. "I can't believe we all made it..."

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

"I think...just combat techniques." Endo replies to Signum. "They didn't seem as aware as the one at the department store. The ones at the store were really set on being impersonators..." Endo muses, "It's strange that there weren't other ones, though."

Ren's return is met with a brief smile before Endo once again makes the effort to rise. He makes it successfully to medium recline before giving up.

"It's weird they were working together, if that's what the other Heraut wanted. But if the other two did something to Stern and Sky, I'm worried that the other Heraut will want to find Ren's device too..."

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

"Mm-hm! Setsuna's here," Lera says, with a bright smile at Shamal. "Thank you for the help, back there," she adds. "I'm sorry it went so topsy-turvy."

The way she glances to the side, though -- that speaks volumes. That her best wasn't, in the end, good enough bothers her. She hides it, under a smile, and distracting herself with the problem at hand, rather than voicing that disappointment in herself.

"Maybe if they scanned Sky, while we were on the ship. But..." Lera looks down, at her wrist. Her bracelet isn't there; there is a pale line, showing the outline of where Broken Ground in his standby form usually rested. "...they didn't. Not Ground, nor the Wolkenritter's. Or Bardiche."

She looks back at Ren, then tilts her head. "Like Setsuna said. But... the Dark Heraut worked with the Shadow Stern." They needed names, Lera thought. "We really have more questions than answers, don't we?"

<Pose Tracker> Pink Moon Stick [Admin] has posed.

'We really have more questions than answers, don't we?'

That is an excellent line to come in on, so Hayate does.

"Um," she says, quietly, rolling in on her wheelchair, "I think the Devices themselves might be able to help with that a little?"

She smiles at everyone, naked relief in her deep blue eyes to see so many awake and about as well as could be expected.

In her lap is a pillow. On that pillow, everyone's Devices are arranged. They are no longer cracked, pulsing, or otherwise damaged. They chime a round of helloes to the group as they arrive.

"Good morning," Hayate greets. She is her usual self, small and bright and, these days, no longer on the brink of death, to boot. "I thought, it would help if they could see you doing better, and vice versa. They were all VERY worried."

The Devices are collectively silent on this point, but radiate a faint air of embarrassment at this declaration that supports its truth. Hayate smiles down at them like a gentle mother.

<Pose Tracker> Setsuna Higashi [Juuban Public School (10)] has posed.

"Yes!" Setsuna answers Shamal, too, smiling once before tilting her head as if to intuit what Shamal is looking for before apparently realizing something close enough and ducking her head down a little. She has some more of the rice porridge in the meantime, looking between Endo and Lera. "I also appreciate it," Setsuna pipes up about the thanks, but...

More questions than answers. The red-eyed Setsuna finds herself thinking much the same at the moment, just as Hayate comes in. She looks over to her, and to the Devices on the pillow, which prompt another look of relief, and a happy look to Hayate. "Hello, everyone!" ...Though naturally her attention gravitates to Sky in particular.

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

Fate mulls over what everyone is saying, though mostly for now she just spoons rice porridge into her mouth dutifully. Noone ever has to tell her that she needs to clean her plate or no dessert.

The strawberry flower is the last to go, just before it would lose too much of its shape from the child eating down to the bottom of the bowl.

As Hayate rolls in though, a wave of relief rolls over her that she wasn't targetted either. "Thank you for looking after them - Hayate."

And upon the pillow, is a familiar friend.


The Device chimes instantly, as if to assuage any worries. <Condition: Green.>

Fate responds back, "Condition: Yellow."

It's unclear whether she's joking or not, given how seriously she says it. The sleek yellow triangle glows as he replies in his synthetic baritone.

<Yes Sir.>

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (12)] has posed.

Hearing Heraut, even if it was a fake one, declare that all Belkans must be destroyed causes Ren to wince. "How awful..." She shakes her head, thinking about how much worse things could've turned out. Thankfully Shamal needs water! "Oh! Coming right up!" Ren hurries off into the kitchen, and there's the sound of glasses clinking before she returns -- not with just one glass, but several arranged on a tray for everyone else, which she passes out in quick succession.

Endo chimes in next, and his words make Ren's eyes widen. "That's... true, isn't it? Heraut is still in danger..." And she is too, of course, but Heraut's safety is just as important if not more. "I won't let them get him." She says confidently, even if a part of her is wondering how she'd fare against all three of the shadow wielders should they come knocking at the door. She has to be strong, however. Especially in this dire hour of need. The last thing she wants is to break down in front of everyone after everything they've been through.

"Mmmhmm, Lera-chan. We do..." She agrees with her best friend, giving her and Setsuna a small, albeit strained, smile. "We'll figure something out. We always do... you know?" A bit of light in the darkness, however faint, is always needed.

The sudden entrance of Hayate gives Ren a start. "Ah! Hayate-san!" Her eyes then fall to the Devices, and her heart swells instantly. "Yes, thank you for your hard work!"

The silver ornate ring that is Heraut chimes not long after. <Miss Hayate was very thorough! I helped her as best I could.>

"Thank you too, Heraut, for agreeing to this!" Ren makes sure to say to her Device, grinning from ear-to-ear. At least something seems to be going right.

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Lera looks sideways at Ren, then smiles. She nods her head once. "Yeah... we'll--we'll do the best we can, y'know?" she says. She gives the same strained smile back.

"Hayate!" Lera says, sitting up straighter. She gets a grin on her face -- a bit more subdued, though, in the face of Hayate's gentler smile. "And..."

<Hayate did a wonderful job,> Soaring Sky says. <Truly! A Meister like no other. I'm elated. I've never met someone from Earth with-->

<She did good. Don't need to rub it in.>

"You guuuuys!" Lera cries out, and then she does bolt out of the bed. The bowl of porridge is left behind. She practically scrambles -- stumbles, really, on one foot -- and then straightens herself out. She's only a few steps behind Fate. Then she grabs the pen and bracelet on the pillow alike, and hugs them to her.

<Ah, Lera... Setsuna. Everyone. It's good to be back!> Sky chimes.

<Good to see all of you.> Broken Ground chimes again.

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

"We'll make sure nothing happens to Heraut or you." Endo assues Ren. He can't do much as he is, but he seems fairly set on this. He's about to continue, but--


Endo's head swivels at Hayate's entrance and the familiar chime of his device. This, like finding his other friends still safe, makes his spirits rise.

"Stern!" Endo's voice rises a few octaves above the low drone that he's managed so far, indicating his relief at the sight of the rough looking gem on Hayate's lap. "I'm glad you're okay..."

<KNIGHT.> The device warbles, it's reverberating chime as matter-of-fact as always. <YOUR CONDITION IS: POOR.>

"Aaah...I'll get better." The boy assures.

A moment of silence.

And then: <GOOD.>

<Pose Tracker> Signum Yagami [None] has posed.

Signum looks up at the approaching form of Hayate.

Warmth fills her. She sits up straighter, setting aside her emptied bowl of oatmeal and sliding her legs off of the cot. She does not rise, not yet, but it feels so much easier now. Her head dips for a moment, and then rises back upwards.

Her gaze turns towards Laevatein - the blade, now in its small form, concealed. A jewel, it could be said, or a slightly-too-detailed ornament.

Signum gazes upon the Armed Device in silence. Thought reaches out towards it. The thoughts are not words.

The ruler in the east.

The clouds at sunset.

Burning flame.

The clouds at dawn!

Signum smiles. She then gets up, stance firm, the spoon in her bowl rattling slightly from the rebound of the cot's mattress.

<<Caution>> says Laevatein, who does not often speak aloud. "I know," Signum says, and she steps forwards. "I shall not repeat my error..." And she says this as she passes near to Shamal, lingering there, to provide a hand if one is wanted.

<Pose Tracker> Vita Yagami [None] has posed.

It's almost over. Finally.

And then light.

The redhead that slumps into the main room from the room she shares with Hayate has little to do with the screaming firecracker from last night. Her neat pigtails are unwound in a chaotic cascade of fire-engine red, hanging down past a white and powder pink raglan-style shirt, and she has one (1) sock on; considering the care with which she was put to bed, she must've worked it off in the night. A fitful night.

From one hand, clutched by the ear and dragged across the hardwood, is one of Vita's many stuffed bunnies, the sewn-shut mouth and staring red eyes turned down in a kind of dejection that highlights Vita's entire figure as she steps in.

This is all pretty typical for the mornings, actually, except that when she looks up and glances past Shamal and Signum, she looks alert, like she might have actually been up for a while; and she looks away, quickly.

"Mornin'," she gruffs. Her voice is hoarse, presumably from all the screaming last night.

<Pose Tracker> Shamal Yagami [None] has posed.

So as to not interrupt the conversations going on, Shamal mouths 'thank you' to Ren, carefully securing the glass in her hand to avoid anyone dropping it during the transfer. Sipping, she feels the dryness in her mouth and throat loosen.

"Mistress..." Shamal gives a warm smile, not unmotherly herself. She exchanges a glance with Signum; the little girl in that wheelchair is their reason for fighting. Extending her palm, she lets the four rings of Klarwind alight there.

"Good morning, Klarwind."

<<Guten morgen, Master.>>

Shamal smiles her pale eyelashes closed again at the staunch voice of her (nominally female) Device. She opens them to look, first at Signum's hand, then up her strong arm to Signum's face.

"Not yet, perhaps," she demurs with weak humor. But when Vita enters, Shamal takes the hand after all, suddenly, and pulls herself to a seated position.

"Vita," she says, and opens her good arm sternly. The other, in its sling, cannot participate in this hug.

<Pose Tracker> Pink Moon Stick [Admin] has posed.

Hayate doesn't, uh, actually have a Device right now. Reinforce is gone, and for the time being, at least, the little cross-shaped remnant of her physical form, dangling over her sweater, is just a chunky pendant. Since the terrible events of the Second Book of Darkness Incident, Hayate has mostly been focusing on getting out of the hospital and regaining her health -- and, still very slowly, her mobility.

She's put on a brave face for everyone but has felt very sad, privately, about her failure to save the Tome of the Night Sky. Getting to help all of these Devices in need was probably good for her. She's bashful as she accepts the joyful greetings of her friends and found family, and especially their gratitude. Affection she knows how to deal with easily, but thankfulness -- being relied on -- is still a mysterious flower opening itself to her one petal at a time.

Afterwards, though, her face falls into serious lines.

"They showed me what happened... and we did some analysis. I think we can say with at least a little confidence what happened yesterday, in terms of what those kids were after, and why they were so strong."

She looks down at the Devices in her lap, promptingly.

"Um, if you don't mind, please...?"

Some combination of Devices assent and start projecting images of the three cloaked figures and their doppel-devices in various mid-combat poses. They look like what they are: powerful and terrible threats.

"Fallen Stern and Soaring Sky both had some data stolen from them yesterday. It's not gone, it's still there... but it was copied very forcefully. It was truly unkind, especially because it was torn from so deeply within them. Data they'd forgotten... and still can't access by themselves. Old, lost memories. All of them, I think."

She pauses to let this sink in, then continues: "That's why I think the other Devices, they were... incomplete copies who wanted to, or were ordered to, complete themselves. I don't know what they know about themselves," she says, sadly, "But it SOUNDED like they believe that they are who they say they are. I don't think anyone was lying..."

She shifts in her chair, uncomfortably, but her hands are steady on the cushion that supports the remaining Devices.

"And after the other Fallen Stern and Soaring Sky copied the originals' memories, their voices stopped stuttering. They sounded clearer, stronger."

She looks over at Ren, solemn but also, in a quiet little way for a quiet little girl, determined. Determined to help however she can.

"So Ren-san is still in real danger. She's gotta be their next target."

<Pose Tracker> Lera Camry [Infinity Institute (11)] has posed.

Lera quiets down while Hayate explains -- and their Devices do. She looks up at the image of the other Soaring Sky. Not, precisely, a copy. Her mouth opens, as if she wants to say more -- but then she quiets. Her mouth closes, and hardens into a line.

<Things I forgot... there is a lot that I do not remember. Ever since I was rebuilt.> Soaring Sky sounds, for a moment, distracted.

Lera nods her head, once. "...yeah," she says. "I know, buddy. And this guy copied your memories..."


<Then we gotta be ready.> Ground chimes. <Since they're coming for Aizawa. And Heraut.>

"Yeah." Lera looks sideways, peering at Ren. "We'll be ready, y'know? We'll..." She glances at Vita. Then, to Signum and Shamal. And then to Endo. "...have to figure something out."

Because they weren't strong enough, before.

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

Endo plays close attention to the recordings, head inclining slightly as Hayate speaks. He lips press into a thoughtful, worried line after. "Whatever the reason they did it, it's probably not good." Endo muses.


He gives Ren a worried look, hand reaching out to take hers once again. There's a nod to Lera's comment. "There has to be something we can do." He affirms, doing his best to keep his voice from wavering.

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

Fate puts her now empty bowl aside on the cot, propping it up against the side of her pillow. "Vita..." The girl says, as Vita awakens, before adding quietly with shining eyes, "...You deserved the extra sleep."

She's mostly quiet as the others greet their Devices, but by the end of it, there's a thin curve of a smile on her expression, as if the realization that everyone is alright has truly settled into her.

Hayate however indicates that they'd done analysis, and Fate sits up even straighter, despite the soreness in the action.

Watching the projection of the three figures, her eyes contract with a certain sense of somber studiousness.

"They weren't lying...?" She repeats back at Hayate, before nodding slowly, as if in acceptance of the idea that they believed it very strongly.

It does settle into her though. Bit by bit. The child's gaze dips away from the projection, and slowly there's this sense of sadness. At the idea of memories being taken by incomplete devices that simply wish to be whole...

"That's... awful. Still I don't blame them for wanting to feel complete."

... though it's more than sadness, perhaps there's more than a little anger too. Because even if Hayate hadn't said 'ordered' then she'd still be skeptical that there wasn't some mastermind behind this.

Suddenly as if the thought were lending her determination, she says to the idea of them targetting Ren, "We have to find some way to stop them." Even if she doesn't know how yet, she knows they must figure out a way.

<Pose Tracker> Ren Aizawa [Infinity Institute (12)] has posed.

Ren listens intently to what is said by both Hayate and the devices. The projected images gives her the first glimpse of the mysterious wielders, making the threat of them even more real to her now. And then the reasoning behind the fierce attack is revealed, Ren's eyes widening as a result as she covers her mouth with both hands in shock.

"Memories... they're after memories, then." It was no secret their devices in particular had quite the pasts. And now these copies were, for all intents and purposes from what Hayate is saying, were "complete"...

...Well, except for the Heraut copy. Ren reaches for Heraut and slips him onto her finger, looking down at him with concern. Sensing this, he chimes quickly:

<I will not yield to this foe, Your Majesty.>

That makes Ren smile, just a bit. "I won't either, Heraut." She looks to Hayate again, who rightfully assumes she's the next target. She nods at the young Meister, showing that she's very aware and ready for this possibility. "I'm ready to stand and fight, if and when they come." The squeeze to her hand that Endo gives her is returned, as she looks from him to everyone else in turn.

<Pose Tracker> Vita Yagami [None] has posed.

Shamal pulls herself up as Vita enters, and Vita's eyes track back to the movement. ... ...

She toddles over and walks directly into Shamal's open arm, slumping her small weight against her and resting her head against the seated Knight's shoulder. "Thank you," she says, quietly. "...I'm sorry. I couldn't..."

She lingers, shaking a little for several long seconds, before forcing herself with great strength to pull back.

"They'll be back," she says, turning to see Hayate. She manages to give her dear master a smile, though at the moment it's a ghost of her usual offerings. "So we have to be ready, then."

Her eyes cut to Fate, briefly. "...I heal fast," she says, declining the award. "Glad everyone got back. I wasn't sure. Considering...what they were saying, and all."

<Pose Tracker> Signum Yagami [None] has posed.

Signum squeezes Vita briefly as well, from the other side. She is surrounded. There is no escape...

... but why would you want to escape a moment like this?

"One of these entities alone," Signum says, "would be a great threat... the three in coordination..."

She looks towards Ren as well, but the thought hangs, incomplete but perhaps from charity.

<Pose Tracker> Shamal Yagami [None] has posed.

Shamal uses her elbow to hug Vita's back, to free up a hand to pat the back of her head. Collaborating with Signum, she sandwiches Vita in a hug.

"There there," she soothes. "If you need more cartridges, then you made Mistress Hayate very proud... and I as well."

Releasing Vita when the red bunny manages to force herself, Shamal considers Signum's concern, touching her lower lip with her ring finger while she looks at the ceiling thoughtfully. "Perhaps it is their coordination which can be targeted, then." She smiles brightly. "I do not think they are having a nice breakfast together right now, after all."