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Pygmalion last won the day on July 15

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  1. If you'd like to respond to anything happening at the lakeside, we can say (just offering an example) that the wooded area is within sight and within earshot of everyone else at the lake. Any other accommodations, or even edits to make everything fit, I'd be happy to work it out with everyone. I'm not entirely sure how a fixed posting order would work though, considering that there's several different simultaneous interactions going on and newcomers jumping into the fray, but I'm open to suggestions!
  2. Severin wore a quizzical expression on his face as Jericho squatted down and motioned for Severin to... get on his back? Both his sense of modesty and just plain awkwardness prevented him from easily taking up on the offer, and he put up all manner of protest; he was a perfectly healthy young man, no stranger to long climbs from the many years of his life spent in his hometown, a modern and cosmopolitan port city dotted with skyscrapers wedged in between mountains and bays in a dramatic landscape. He also piled onto that a large dose of humility: he could not possibly impose on him after he had already healed his right arm with the potion from back then. Alas, Jericho would hear none of it; Severin had no choice but to ultimately gave up his resistance before his mouth and throat could dry up. He gingerly climbed onto Jericho's body, tensing up as his arms and legs took up a position to secure his body against that of his companion. He had only few short moments to physically and mentally brace himself for Jericho's first few steps; not that it mattered much: there was vanishingly little that could prepare him for what came next. The sheer speed at which Jericho took off exerted a tremendous force on him, as if he was being launched in a rocket. Momentum kept his body from adequately adjusting on Jericho's way up the apartment building, and by the time Severin was let off at his destination, the brown-haired alkahestrist only just barely kept himself from puking. It was only after several minutes of calm and rest, letting the disorientation from the ride up subside, that Severin managed to recover enough of his faculties to survey their new position. Their location about halfway up the incomplete apartment building offered a stunning and sweeping view of the Glass Road and the neighbourhood that abutted it. As if looking at an open-air labyrinth from the top down, almost every nook and cranny of the surrounding area was now in plain sight, and there was one particular area that almost immediately came to his notice for how deteriorated it was. Nestled in a part of the neighbourhood that was set apart from the main thoroughfares, linked largely by backyard alleyways, it would probably have required a great deal of time and effort to come across it from a search at ground-level. Yet from their current vantage point, the orange-brownish colour of untreated rust that in places scarred the crumbling buildings in that area stood out clearly amongst the other buildings adjacent to it, even in the reddish glow of the setting sun; a nascent eyesore on the skyline of south-eastern Chesterfield hiding in plain sight. It did not take long for Severin to put two and two together: the range in which he had expected to have to search through for the rust monster just got narrowed down considerably. It was Jericho who was the first to put that thought into words and came up with a plan however. Severin himself, instead of saying something, had taken out the map of Chesterfield that he had on him along with a notebook and pen, carefully correlating landmarks and useful routes around their location of interest with the corresponding locations on the map. In his notebook, he also wrote down or sketched any relevant details that he was able to make out about his surroundings from this birds-eye view, such as discrepancies between the map and the actual layout of the neighbourhood as he saw it through his own two eyes. Though Severin knew firsthand that it was impractical to constantly pull out his notebook during the mission, much of this information was being carved into his memory just by the simple act of writing it down. Within a half hour, with the glow of the setting sun receding into the looming night, he was already envisioning in his mind several potential ways for how the trip to the suspected nest location would play out. 'I think I'm seeing the same thing as you.' Severin said as he aimed his gaze squarely on the cluster of rust-damaged buildings that Jericho was referring to. 'And nearby, it looks like there's a backstreet courtyard overlooked by buildings on each side. It's a bit off the beaten path, and the map I had didn't bother to mark it; from here I can only make out two alleyways that provide direct access to it from the major public roads nearby.' Severin said, extending his left index finger at the cityscape before them and directly pointing to the various locations in the distance that he referred to as they came up in speech. 'It might be private property, but if you don't mind a little trespassing, we could lay the trap in that courtyard; the surrounding buildings overlooking it could be a good platform for us to lie in wait. Access seems to be a bit restricted in that area, but by the same token, that also means there's only a few open routes that I can see thus far for the rust monster to escape; it's possible that the two of us alone could pincer it. Based on what you've shown me up here, I'm going to hold off on asking for reinforcements until we get more information on the ground.' he continued. 'What do you think?'
  3. Roger that. I'll aim for a post in the morrow if I don't get to it tonight.
  4. To be honest, I might take a little inspiration from DnD: I'm envisioning the rust monster to be somewhat simple minded... a bit hungry for metal, but not really hostile towards people in general. Severin himself wouldn't have any trouble with killing it if he had to, and depending on how we envision the rust monster to look like, he might be frightened by it at first glance, but he'll probably spare it if he can figure out that it just wants metal and has no interest in his fleshy self. As for a pet... that would actually be pretty awesome.
  5. 'As would I, Daichi-san.' replied Severin. 'Let us get some firewood ready before Emilio's fish trap gets filled up and our guests get hungry.' He gave a nod to Daichi before turning away from the immediate vicinity of lake and starting towards the wooded section of land just a short distance away in another direction, taking the man at face value when he said he didn't need any help finding his way around. In fact, Severin thought that it was he himself, with his injured arm, that would probably be the liability in this circumstance. Already focusing his mind on the task at hand, he began to take careful note of his surroundings so as to pick out what would make the best firewood amongst all the trees and branches in the woods around him. His attention was drawn to a large fallen tree limb lying in a sunlit clearing not too far away from him. From the tree limb sprouted a number of smaller branches, some of which were pressed firmly into the ground by gravity and the rest suspended in the air. Inspecting it closer, Severin saw that the bark was already peeling and cracked in many places, with little flakes of it scattered on the ground around the tree limb. Eyeing his mark, Severin grabbed one of the outlying branches with his left hand; without the use of his right arm, he tried using one of his feet to snap it off further down its length, which would yield a piece of wood of fair size. Only a tiny portion of the branch that he held in his left hand yielded and broke off. Severin grimaced and briefly shot an annoyed look at the fallen tree limb before him before looking for his companion. 'Eeehhh... Daichi-san. It seems it is I who is in need of your assistance: the branches on this dead tree limb are a bit more troublesome than I gave them credit for. Would you do me the favour of helping me in breaking off a few of them?' asked Severin. @Purple Eagle
  6. Alright then. Going to do a bit of catch up reading on all our new arrivals first, and I'll figure out a post either tonight or tomorrow.
  7. Severin met Jericho's explanation about insurance and labour practices in the construction industry with a chuckle: like many things in society it fell short of the ideal, but he nevertheless had to concede that the arrangement sufficed for everyone involved. He caught himself momentarily wondering whether that was all that really mattered sometimes. Taking in the rest of Jericho's words, Severin then gave the situation some more thought before replying: taking to the high ground made sense, though if Jericho was only able to narrow down the location of the rust monster to just this neighborhood, it would still indeed take the two of them several hours of searching even with the most systematic and strategic of approaches. To be sure, Severin had already decided to take Jericho's unwavering confidence at face value, and he had also already begun to mentally prepare himself to spend the next few hours on a lengthy search the moment Jericho raised the possibility. But even with the aid of a companion and a sufficient reserve of patience, the inefficiency of a two-man search bothered him. The neighbourhood to which the Glass Road belonged stretched a fair distance to the north and west of their current position: unless they got lucky, it was too much area to go through without wasting a inordinate amount of time to cover the whole place. 'I like your plan, but even if we're able to narrow down the creature's potential locations from the vantage of the high ground, two pairs of eyes ultimately might not be enough to cover all our bases. If it's your estimation that it's going to take several hours with just the two of us, is there any chance you or your organisation could arrange for some extra help? I reckon you're more persuasive than a near-broke newcomer to this city.' said Severin. As he left those words for Jericho, Severin turned to his surroundings, already looking around for a vantage point from where they could get a more wide-ranging view of the neighbourhood.
  8. Upon hearing Jericho describe their intended target of interest, a rust monster, a flurry of activity went off in Severin's mind as he tried to dig up what he might have seen or heard about it. Unfortunately it did not amount to much, yet he wasn't comfortable proceeding with the mission without knowing exactly what they were up against. Thankfully he wasn't alone, and Severin had from the corner of his eye started to pick up on the small signs that hinted at Jericho being more than just your average citizen; at the very least, Severin was confident that his companion would know something about the creature that he had brought the two of them here to look for. 'I think I've seen something about this actually... a rust monster on the Glass Road: I remember coming across it on the city's public quest board, but I ended up choosing to tackle the city's problem with their giant ant colony instead. Didn't look into the details of this unfortunately, and I honestly never encountered one in person before. Any tactical information that you might know about this rust monster before we start searching for it? What does this creature do with rust, exactly?' Severin said. 'It can sniff out ferrous metal inside of 10 meters and any mundane metal that hits it corrodes exponentially with contact. What's that do to your arsenal?' Jericho responded. Severin paused to consider the ramifications as that tidbit of information from Jericho sunk in. That it could corrode metal made it easy to understand what made the monster such a menace to the city, but given the mission at hand, he also took stock of his belongings to consider what he had on him that might be affected by the rust monster's abilities. The big standout was his metallic staff-sling: he wondered briefly whether it might have been a mistake to have replaced his old wooden staff-sling with it. He unslung it from his shoulder, holding it with both hands in front of him as he looked it up and down. 'Hm... guess this new metal staff of mine is a liability in this particular instance.' Severin thought aloud. 'Is it?' asked Jericho in turn. That response caught Severin off-guard; he immediately wanted to ask what Jericho meant by that, but before he could pose his question, he recalled that the staff he currently carried was transmuted from that mysterious throne in the bowels of Chesterfield's giant ant colony. Certainly, he could tell that it was considerably lighter than what he expected for an iron staff of such length and shape, but he now wondered if the material was even more exotic than what that one simple difference implied. Maybe it had magical properties too? He had yet to figure out the secrets of the throne besides the observation that whoever sat on it would inexplicably pass out; Severin wondered if Jericho was hinting at knowing something about the staff that he didn't. One more question among many about his companion that were piling up in Severin's mind the longer he kept him company. 'Well, in truth, the staff I have might not be your run-of-the-mill iron staff—bit of a long story—but I haven't examined all of its properties thoroughly. In any case, based on what you said I'd be more sure of it holding up against this rust monster if it were wood for instance.' Severin told Jericho, opting to keep his questions to himself for the time being and to focus on the mission. 'Now, I still have projectiles, but I'm considerably less reliable in close-combat without the staff. Any chance your own set of skills can make up for it?' 'Yeah, absolutely, I could probably take the thing without you if it comes to that. It isn’t very smart. But it isn’t my efficacy that needs vetting. You’re thinking a direct frontal assault is the best way forward?' Jericho said. Severin's eyes momentarily went up in surprise before shaking his head with a sheepish smile on his face, feeling slightly embarrassed that Jericho might have gotten the impression that he was advocating such an approach. 'Oh no, I'm not looking to just rush in.' Severin blurted out in response. 'I just like knowing what I can rely on in a worst-case scenario.' 'That's me.' Jericho replied, his confidence showing through his face. His companion did raise a good point though: what was their strategy? He looked back to the small strip of buildings that had caught his attention and which Jericho had pointed out earlier. Unless Jericho already had some solid information on where exactly its nesting place was, it would take forever to search their surroundings one by one for signs of the rust monster, not to mention somewhat dangerous given the condition some of the buildings on the Glass Road were in. A few even seemed to be undergoing major repair: the buildings and the stretch of the road adjacent to them were cordoned off with makeshift barriers and scaffolding and, with all the workers seemingly gone for the day at this hour, all manner of construction paraphernalia were visibly scattered about each of the sites. In fact, something in specific at one of the construction sites caught Severin's eye: a large pile of metallic construction beams, uncovered and unsecured, located at the building's ground level near where the walls had been roughly removed and opened up to be worked on. If a rust monster was indeed prowling the area, he though it rather careless to leave such items unprotected overnight. Yet for the purposes of his current mission it also represented a potential opportunity... 'Hm... Jericho, you wouldn't happen to already have a lead on where this rust monster is, would you? I was just eyeing something over there.' Severin said, motioning to the construction site with the pile of metallic construction beams. 'Some construction workers either didn't get the memo about your rust monster, or they just don't care enough. What are the chances it'll sniff out that pile of beams before long?'
  9. (Severin doesn't know exactly how magical it is and whether it's sufficiently non-mundane to unambiguously not be affected. To him, it's an iron-ish staff that's lighter than usual) 'Well, in truth, the staff I have might not be your run-of-the-mill iron staff—bit of a long story—but I haven't examined all its properties thoroughly. Based on what you said, I'd be more sure of it holding up if it were wood, for instance.' 'But no, I'm not looking to just rush in; I just like knowing what I can rely on in a worst-case scenario.' (OOC: going to tie this into a post)
  10. 'Hm... guess this metal staff of mine is a liability for once. I still have projectiles, but I'm considerably less reliable in close-combat without it. Any chance your own set of skills can make up for it?'
  11. My apologies for overwhelming you. Didn't quite sense a posting order in this thread, so I just reply to whatever makes sense. If anyone has an incoming post that they would like to get in, I'd be happy to accommodate you if you let me know in advance.
  12. 'I suppose I would be willing to volunteer.' Severin responded, missing Igni's mock innocence entirely. 'Besides, I also need to find a suitable piece of wood to use as a sharp stick for fishing. If you prefer to swim in the meanwhile, feel free; this lake looks to be more than big enough for all of us.' Severin followed Igni's gaze as she then turned toward Daichi, managing in the process to catch part of the ongoing exchange between Kiko and the newcomer. With the performer gesturing to her katana and drawing Daichi's attention to it, Igni's earlier question about Kiko's ability to use it and her short response to said question remained fresh in Severin's mind; the arrival of another blind swordsman to the party lent weight to Severin's growing suspicion that unlike his own homeland, it might not be too uncommon after all here for the blind to be fully capable of mastering swordsmanship or other weapons. He remembered that Daichi had just boldly asked Kiko to be his sensei; Severin considered it quite possible that both Daichi and Kiko might in fact be a skilled swordsman and a master swordswoman respectively. The few years he had spent here since he arrived had already taught him the lesson that much more was possible in this world than he had ever imagined back home. Still, he did not dwell it for long, partly out of tact from noticing that Kiko preferred to keep her answers about her swordsmanship short and vague, and partly because he himself did not associate fighting with any particularly festive emotions. This was a party, after all! 'If Daichi-san would like to join me in collecting wood, I would be happy to be his eyes, so to speak. That is, if he in fact needs the help.' Severin said.
  13. Mind if I start a dialogue string from your last post? 'I think I've seen something about this actually... a rust monster on the Glass Road: I remember coming across it on the city's public quest board, but I ended up choosing to tackle the city's problem with their giant ant colony instead. Didn't look into the details of this unfortunately, and I honestly never encountered one in person before. Any tactical information that you might know about this rust monster before we start searching for it? What does this creature do with rust, exactly?'
  14. 'Lai chun kah? He went for the miracle cure after all.' whispered Severin to himself as the greenish-grey concoction did its work on his right arm. It was the first time he experienced an elixir like this working its effects on him, and though it was admittedly a painful experience for him, bone and tendons spontaneously grew within his arm followed by excess matter dying off and dissipating, he nevertheless bore the pain of it all with a well-practiced silence. In fact, he could not help but try and focus, in as much detail as he could make out from pure sensation alone, on the process of his bone and flesh growing in and re-ordering itself with his injured arm. The reason was not only curiosity towards the novel experience, but also a sense of disappointment with himself over his skill set: medical alkahestry, which used its techniques to heal injuries and illnesses within the human body, was one of the most traditionally-prestigious specialisations of the craft, yet Severin had no real practical experience with it. He could have avoided imposing upon Jericho like this, or even patched up his injury all the way back during his quest in the ant colony, if he was more experienced with performing medical transmutations; instead, he was left a tinge of regret at being more accustomed by far to transmuting weapons and bombs than healing the sick and wounded. He was broken out of his reverie as Jericho gave him his first mission: to take them to the Glass Road. Severin was not familiar enough with Chesterfield to instinctively know where that was though, and after untying his arm sling and shedding the wrist splint that it supported, he reached for his knapsack to fetch a map of Chesterfield that he had picked up when he first came to the city. Painlessly pulling it out with his newly-mended right arm, a part of him was still marveling at the success of the unknown healing concoction as he unfurled the map and shifted his attention to the layout of the city. 'Not too far from here.' Severin remarked, having quickly committed the relevant details of the map to memory as he rolled it back up and put it away. The two of them were already heading south from Elder Company's commercial office, and it was not long before they found themselves at the south-eastern gate of Chesterfield's city walls. Caught in the transition from daytime to night, the sprawl of the city itself, with its lights and its signs, remained visible into the distance beyond the limits of the city's walls, stretching down the road that ran south-east past the gate and outwards from the city centre. Their path however, was not straight ahead but to the right where a road ran south-west adjacent to the inner face of the city wall. Despite being one of Chesterfield's most well-known streets, enough to warrant it being specially-marked on the map he had in his knapsack, the Glass Road was not as crowded as he might have expected for such a landmark and the buildings that lined the street were an eclectic mix of both glittering new constructions and decaying structures juxtaposed against each other in a seemingly unplanned layout. With the sturdy stone face of the city wall hemming them in to his left, Severin looked to his right and peered down a random alleyway branching off from the Glass Road, one which was at once faintly illuminated by both the street lamps that hung between the buildings on either side and the glow of twilight that still hung in the sky from the west. A unexplainable feeling of unease slowly crept up on Severin as he took in the scene before him, and he found himself hungry for details about what exactly he was getting into. Turning back to the Glass Road, he searched around for a relatively sheltered spot on the side of the street to get him and Jericho out of the way of oncoming pedestrians before coming to a stop. 'Well, here we are. Is there something, or some place, that we're looking for in particular?'
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