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NuclearCommando last won the day on November 23 2019

NuclearCommando had the most liked content!

About NuclearCommando

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  • Gender
    Gold Knight
  • Location
    Chilling with the 765Pro Allstars
  • Interests
    Video games, writing, World War II, tankery and weaponry

    Being crazy
  • Occupation
    In over my head

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  1. Eve waited for a moment before reaching into her bag and briefly revealing the shard that was mentioned, before putting it back. "Of course... I have the shard... I wouldn't give it... to anyone..." Eve's words were directed at Orsola, before turning to look at Olivia. "But... uhh... what's wrong with the trebuchet? I... I think it would be... a good plan... I could... even help set it up..." "You just want to build another weapon, don't you?" "I... I think we could make it work... we... launch ourselves... or... maybe launch just me..." She then frowned. "But... materials..." She sighed. "I... understand you... want to use... a pegasus... but animals... don't really like me. I don't think... it'll like me... riding on it's back..." Eve then approached the pillar itself, then gazed upwards. The rock face was unforgiving, but she stared at it with great interest. She was unresponsive for a few minutes before speaking, her eyes locked to the pillar. "I think... I can climb it. You... you go ahead and fly up... I'll... meet you up there." Before a word of protest could be spoken, she was already gripping the rock face, making quick, careful calculations. Grabbing a rock here, putting a foothold there. Her motions were fluid, and despite the dangers the pillar's face represented, Eve showed no hesitation as she clambered up the rock pillar at a decent pace.
  2. Eve sat on the beach, just out of reach of the waves that rolled against the sand. She sat alone, with just herself as company. For her, it was peaceful, yet discomforting. "I never understood the beauty of beaches... even being at one now, I don't see the appeal." "Believe me, I don't either. Who likes to immerse themselves in seawater?" "I know. And this sand... it's killing me." "I hate it too. It's coarse and rough and it's getting everywhere. And this is what people call ideal vacation spots?" "Thank goodness we never lived near one. But..." "But what Eve?" "I feel like this would be more enjoyable with people we knew." "Eve, you know that's physically impossible. Though I do agree with your sentiment. Perhaps the beach would have charm with others to enjoy it with." "Yeah... like him..." Eve physically let out a sly smile as she mentally responded to herself. "Maybe one day we'll get to enjoy that then. But for right now, didn't you agree to help... what's her face?" "Orsola? Yeah, I did. I guess we shouldn't keep her waiting." Eve patted her handbag. "She did say she'd need this." Eve got up and dusted the sand off herself, thankful that it was easy to clean off, and set off. After some walking, Eve saw two figures in the distance. "You know Eve, I'm so glad you decided to wear this swimsuit. It really accents our body and... oh, is that them?" "It looks like it... they don't see us. Like usual." Eve approached behind them, as they were looking off into the distance. After a moment of not being notice, she suddenly spoke out. "Hello there."
  3. With the crack of dawn the day after, the festival was due to begin shortly. The party slowly filtered out from their rooms. Crystal was one of the first ones to emerge, fully uncomfortable in a two piece swimsuit. Amber shortly followed afterwards, even more uncomfortable. "I hate this." Amber quietly whispered to Crystal. "At least we're both uncomfortable." Crystal paused, glancing over Amber once again. "You look good by the way." "Shut up." After a few minutes, the rest of the party was out of their rooms, including Eve... who was not only the last one out, but wearing the exact same swimsuit as Amber. "Oh... Amber... you chose... this swimsuit too?" "Unfortunately so." "Well... umm... I thought it looked good... so I chose it... if you're wearing it too... I guess I made the right choice...?" Eve's face was a tad red. "See? Told you Eve. It's a good swimsuit." "You... think it looks good?" Eve didn't get a chance to reply before the legate came and fetched the group, leading them towards the opening ceremony on the beach. They arrived at the same time as three very familiar figures, each clad in their own swimsuit: Innes, Jill, and the Ebon Knight (who, contrary to everyone else, was wearing his armor under his swimsuit). Tensions immediately rose, but the legate quickly interposed herself between the two parties. "Before you get any ideas, this is a time of peace so we may all celebrate this festival. Fighting is strictly illegal, so much so that your weapons were all confiscated while you slept." "How did you do that? We would've heard you." "It was quite simple really. I didn't stop moving while I was in your rooms, so you had no chance to detect me." "So you were the one who woke me up last night?" Crystal said in shock. "I have no idea what you're talking about." The legate quickly brushed Crystal off. "Anyways, now that everyone has gathered, we may begin the festivities. The beach is yours to engage in various summer activities, while there is an area set up to eat to your heart's content." And with that, the legate wandered off, leaving the groups to themselves. Crystal let out a sigh. "Well Amber, let's go see what's on the beach. Might as well make the most of things while we're here." "Very well. What are you hoping for?" "Anything to pass the time quicker." The two headed off towards the beach, while Eve silently followed as well, but headed in her own direction.
  4. Mason and Amber were holed away in one of the inn's rooms, arguing back and forth over Mason's current predicament. It was already bad enough Mason had to maintain his disguise longer than necessary, but now he had to go to the extreme? No matter how he tried to figure out how to get out of it, Amber sorrowfully pointed out how it wouldn't work. Mason had to participate, and he had to do it in a two piece swimsuit, much to his chagrin. Though he finally conceded on the grounds he got to pick Amber's as well. Much to her chagrin. Nothing more needs to be said on that topic. Meanwhile, with everyone heading off in their own directions, Eve went off on her own. She drifted through town, checking out all the stalls, weaving between people who didn't even cast her a second glance. Shopkeepers who saw her one minute would find her gone as soon just as swiftly and mysteriously as she appeared. "I've never seen anything like this before." Eve mused to herself. "To think something like this existed." "I must admit, seeing such trinkets crafted out of seashells is... unique, to say the least. But knowing you, these mere trinkets are nothing compared to what you can make." Eve gave a little nod to herself. "I'm already coming up with ideas... not just with shells, but with some of these other oddities as well." "Oh? Now you've piqued my interest." Eveline realize Eve was staring at a mounted swordfish. "One of your ideas?" "Maybe." Eve continued her walk through the market place until she came across a booth at the end, selling mysterious multi-colored orbs. "Welcome! Are you interested in purchasing one of these?" The shopkeeper said after he realized Eve was there. "Umm... what... what are these?" "These, young lass, are called beach balls!" "Beach... balls? Beaches... have balls?" "What an amusing name. Didn't know beaches had balls." The shopkeeper let out an amused chuckle. "No, that's not what that is. A beach ball is a ball you pass back and forth at the beach with friends." "Oh... with... friends..." Eve paused. "I'll... take one..." She placed two gold on the counter and the shopkeeper handed her the ball, and almost immediately afterwards she just disappeared, leaving the shopkeeper confused. Eve continued through the marketplace, holding the beach ball in front of her. "Oh Eve... I know you have no intention of using that ball for playing." Eve smiled to herself. "No... I'm not... but it is for friends."
  5. Upon arrival in Onstade, the group were greeted by the legate, who guided them through the city into a nearby inn. Their path took them through streets in the final processes of being decorated for the upcoming festival. In the lobby of the inn, the legate addressed the group. "As you have royalty among yourselves, this inn is yours and yours alone, you may divvy up your rooms as you see fit. As you could see on your way here, the festival is in it's final preparations and will be ready for tomorrow. You may use the rest of this day as you please, and to pick out a swimsuit for tomorrow if you don't already have one. Crystal!Mason's blood ran cold. "Swimsuit?" "Yes, swimsuit. It is the summer festival after all. Everyone is required to wear one. Crystal!Mason gave a slight glare to Amber as Eve spoke up. "Umm... what if we don't... have one?" "Lucky for you, we have already taken care of that issue. Each room has a wide variety of swimsuits to choose from, in all kinds of styles to suit your needs. Whatever you choose is yours to keep. If there are no other questions you are free to go about your business. Shops are still open if you wish to purchase our wares or have dinner at a restaurant." Crystal!Mason quickly broke off from the group, muttering something about swimsuits, and was soon followed by Amber, disappearing into one of the rooms. Eve, meanwhile, watched them leave, but decided it was best to stay with the group for a bit. Meanwhile, far outside the city limits... "You're back." The man in black armor said to a woman who had just landed her six legged dragon mount. "What's the situation?" "All of them arrived safe and sound, though he's still wearing that ridiculous outfit." "He is? Interesting. Well, if he's still disguised then perhaps it'll buy him more time without suspicion." The woman had climbed off the dragon and pat it's head, before sitting next to the man by the small campfire. "I don't know how well it'll hold up at the festival though." "We'll have to watch and see. It's all up to him and how he acts." "I know... I wish we could go to the festival too." "Perhaps next time. You know we can't risk it." She sighed. "I know, as much as I don't like it." "Just be on standby in case anything happens."
  6. Amber put her hand to her chin to ponder what Orsola just told her. So Mason and I usher forth a cruel death and then survive the apocalypse... we killed Madon? Who else would she be referring to? Something seemed off about the whole thing. If what Orsola said is true and he was stopped because of how he fell... but why would I have reason to draw it out when killing him? Two and two were then put together. Wait, something is off... we worked together to stop Madon... yet Orsola said that whatever toxin was used against me, Mason had. She has to be lying about something... or everything." Amber cleared her throat. "Well... I guess, apology accepted? For what we did yet did not do? But you are right, if you were to try to antagonize us, retaliation would eventually happen. Everyone has their limits after all. But throwing that aside... the knowledge that Madon will eventually lose himself is a foreboding thought... one I'll keep in mind as things go forward. That knowledge alone might allow the changing of the future." A quick pause before she continued. "If, we were as bad as you said... thank you for overcoming that for our sake, and coming forth with this information." It was all completely cordial. Orsola's words left doubts in Amber's mind. For all Amber knew, she couldn't trust a thing that came out of Orsola's mouth, especially if Orsola was twisting things to fit her own agenda.
  7. I stayed at the stern of the boat looking over the water, letting Olivia's stinging words sit in. She wouldn't have to make good on her threat at least... there was no way in hell I'd ever be doing this again. And I'd definitely warn Amber about this so it never comes to it. Why my entire reason for staying hidden may not have been entirely sound... she lived with a guy who does what I'm doing for a living... I wish she'd considered the fact I'd probably be a laughing stock if anybody else found out. I... "H-Hey..." Eve's voice caught me off guard, though I had a sneaking suspicion she was somewhere nearby. "Oh, hi Eve. Were you waiting for me to be alone?" "Umm... yeah... I wanted to talk to you." "Talk to me? What about? Something on your mind?" "Oh... no. Umm... actually... I just wanted to talk about anything... really." "Anything? Well, then I'll let you pick the topic then." "Me? Well... I umm... I wanted to know a little bit more about you... and... I never got to tell you you did a great job dealing with the assassin... which... I hope that makes up for being stuck like this for now." I cracked a small smile. "Yeah... that does somewhat make up for this, hearing it from someone else." I glanced towards where Olivia had left and then back at Eve. "At least someone acknowledges it." "Oh... she hasn't?" "Not that I'm aware of. But... I found the whole thing odd, if you must know Eve." "Odd? How so?" "I've never used anything more than a dagger and my rifle for melee encounters before... yet I wielded that sword like I was training with it all my life." I saw Eve's eyes open slightly. "That's... that's really strange... maybe you're... what is it... a born natural?" "That could be it... or I could just be lucky..." "Or you're the one..." It was quiet, but I definitely heard Eve say something... and it didn't sound like her normal timid voice. "Did you just say something Eve?" This provoked a gasp from her as her face turned a light shade of red and she covered her mouth. "No! Nothing! I was... just thinking to myself... I must've mumbled out loud..." I quizzically raised my eyebrow, and then shrugged. It wasn't my place to pry. "Lost in thought huh? I don't really think it's worth that much thought. An odd phenomenon more than anything." I looked back over the water and then returned my gaze to Eve. "Speaking of swords... that one that lit up when I grabbed it... did you really mean it when you said I could have it after this all blows over?" Eve quickly regained her composure and nodded. "Yes... I did mean it..." "Are you sure? It seems like it's a really rare and special sword... why else would you have something like that?" "I'm... I'm sure... Mason... I want you to have it... it... I think it would... suit you really well... and help you blend in a little more." I wasn't going to argue or turn down a gift. I didn't want to ruin my relationship with one of my allies, so I just shrugged. "If you say so." "Whatever happens Orsola... I think we're all prepared to try and prevent this bad future from happening, no matter the cost." Even if we have to go behind everyone's backs to do so. Amber thought to herself. "Orsola, you said Mason was different in the future." Amber hesitated before she continued. She knew she was venturing into territory she'd best not explore, but it didn't hurt to be wary. "I shouldn't probe into his life like this... but I want to know: how different was he? What was he like?" Amber found it hard to believe that Mason would be any different than what he was now... but then... if he could be different... "And what about me?"
  8. I let out a little sigh. I didn't know how to best describe it. Like many other things that I knew of, it was just so natural that there really wasn't any other explanation other than that's how it was. "Olivia, if you want the honest truth, there really is no proper way to answer your questions." I spoke as I turned my attention back to her. "Any answer I give you would just be riddled with more questions... I guess I can start at the basics. We had freedom, but being male carried a status, as did being a female. It was generally accepted among the populace what those statuses were, and that they shouldn't be intermixed. And if you want the honest truth, that's just how our society was. Just like how your city is a woman's paradise. It's odd looking at it from an outside perspective, but having grown up and lived with it, it's so natural I don't know how to explain it." A thought crossed my mind, which I made verbal. "To some extent, that lifestyle does come from passages of the bible... but believe me, I really do not want to get into the discussion of religion. Religion and politics, standard social etiquette to never discuss them. Not that I'm any good at discussing them anyways." I paused and once again looked out over the water, mulling my words. "You mentioned what I thought about Anselm... and then you mentioned you were destined to be princesses... I'll tell you what I told Anselm: I don't believe in the whole destiny thing. I believe everyone has a God-given right to live the life they want to live." I then met Olivia's smile and chuckled. "And to be honest, I don't know what sense to make of Anselm. He's crazy, I will admit that. But I'm also hoping he really took the words I told him to heart. He's got potential that he's not utilizing." Amber pondered Orsola's words. She had considered that the toxin had to come from someone on the ship, that someone was paid off to do so. But Orsola's certainty that the vial came from Mason's possessions? That didn't add up. Mason had nothing against Madon or anyone else in the group, and in fact doing something to him would be detrimental to their goals. Was someone setting him up? Amber concluded that she needed to bring this up with Mason as soon as she could, for both of their sakes. "A festival in Onstade, huh?" Amber rubbed her chin. "If it is what I'm thinking of... hmm... you're right, at most it should be embarrassing... I'm not looking forward to it myself." "And Mason is going to kill me" she thought to herself. "Nevertheless... I'm wary of everyone. You don't have to worry about that. You live the life I did roaming around and you know full well to watch your back. I'll extend the same warning to you: just because you have some knowledge of what happens in Dodon does not mean you should bank on it happening. It's entirely possible what'll happen there is completely different than what bits you remember." Amber paused, as if she remembered something, and then continued. "And Orsola, whenever you see Mason again, could you possibly apologize for invoking the name of Candace? He told me the story behind that name, and it would mean a lot to him with an apology." For what Amber knew Mason didn't really care if Orsola apologized or not. But still, a chance for an olive branch to be shared between the two would help smooth any future conflicts.
  9. I listened to Olivia talk about her and her sisters for a brief time, and then she spoke the last thing any undercover agent would want to hear. “On that note, I have to ask why you’re still keeping up semblances.” She touched a finger to her lips. Her voice dipped into a gentle murmur. “Who knows? Committed to the bit? Or perhaps you find yourself enjoying it, Mason?” The words caused my blood to instantly freeze. She knew. Thank God she was an ally... though that did little to stem the embarrassment of the whole thing. "And another thing - it does make one wonder, when allies deceive, omit, and lie to one another. Don't you think?" She laughed. "Not that we are greatly bothered by something so harmless." I guess there was no point in hiding it from her. I could try to play my cover harder... but that would only blow back on me worse. I let out a defeated sigh and leaned against the railing, looking out at the water. "I'm going to be clear up front: I absolutely hate this. I'm pretty sure that gives you some insight as to why I continue to hide behind this facade. And if that's still not enough... well... red isn't my natural eye color, not to mention I'm blind in my left eye anyways, this hair isn't my natural color or length... not to mention quite heavy, and... well... the tone of my voice should be evidence enough. Men don't naturally have women's voices. To help with the assassination attempt against you, I went undercover, against my will mind you, as Crystal. Minute traces of magic was cast on me to alter my voice, eyes, and hair. The problem is, and what I wasn't told, was that the magic has to run it's course. In layman's terms, I'm stuck like this until it wears off, and it's humiliating enough as it is with two people knowing about it. I'd rather I keep my dignity than have it torn to shreds with everyone knowing. I'd never live it down." A pause to catch my breath. "And besides... it's frowned upon where I'm from to crossdress. It's seen as unmanly. Call that line of thinking whatever you want... it's already rubbed off on me and I don't feel comfortable like this." I then glanced towards Olivia. "So you'll have to forgive me for wanting to keep this all under wraps until it blows over... and having saved your life, I would at least ask that you would do the same as well... and hopefully have Anselm keep his mouth shut about it too." Amber shielded her eyes as she climbed up onto the deck of the ship, until her eyes adjusted to the light. She was already feeling a little bored and looking for anything to do to pass the time. She couldn't find Eve, and she was giving Mason some space after his angered reaction to finding out the magic she used had to wear off naturally. She couldn't really blame him for that, she didn't know it would happen, and she did force him into it to begin with. Looking back at the stern, she saw him with Olivia anyways, and frowned. She wouldn't be comfortable talking to him with her around anyways. Instead, she made her way in the opposite direction, towards the bow, unknowingly walking right past Eve as the latter descended back into the ship. Amber soon bumped into Orsola. "Oh, hello Orsola." She glanced around for a second before continuing. "I've been meaning to talk to you, and haven't had a chance until now. You said you're from the future, right? Is there anything you can share about it that might assist us in the upcoming days, or anything that we should be on guard for?" Amber figured it wouldn't hurt to ask, anything to further their cause. "Of course, we can't discount the fact that the future has possibly already been changed... remember when I turned violent after that meal back in Glia? I found out that it was because of some kind of toxin. It could've been meant for Madon and by dumb luck I happened to get it. If you didn't happen to know about it, then the future might be changed enough that things are going differently than what you know."
  10. "Mason" My heart skipped a beat. I recognized the voice as Olivia's... but how would she know? Did Anselm tell her? Tch... this is why I don't trust secrets with others... Wait. I don't think I told Anselm my real name. What kind of trickery is this? I refused to respond. I'm not blowing my cover over a name. Even though I shouldn't be undercover anymore... "Crystal." That was better. I started to turn to face Olivia. "No need to turn around. I’m not so interesting, in comparison, I don’t get to leave the palace often. Less than you might think. So don’t think I’m joking, I do love being able to get out. See a little of the things we don’t have as much of in the city. So long as it’s not quite familiar, it’s endless fun. Speaking of things that are rare, I don’t think we’ve had the pleasure of meeting, unlike as with my sister and yourself.” I disregarded Olivia's words that I shouldn't turn around to face her, instead leaning against the railing of the ship as I focused my attention on her. "Don't say you're not interesting just because you don't get to leave the palace that often. Quite the contrary, to someone like me your experiences would be wildly different than the ones I've seen in my travels. But you are right, we haven't formally met. My name's Crystal, and I'm a bit of a traveler like Amber is." I paused to take a breath, remembering Anselm's words about the merits of free speech, or lack thereof here. "You'll have to forgive me for not knowing any proper etiquette for talking to a princess like you. I've never had to before in all my travels, so please note that if I say something that offends you, it is merely because of a different upbringing and I offer my apologies up front."
  11. Our journey north to... Onasted? Ontario? All these names are so confusing to me... it's left me some time to think. The fresh air as I stood at the stern of the boat helped clear my head. We were inducted into Gila's... no, Glia's military force... as far as they know anyways. Amber, Eve, and I still have our allegiances to solely ourselves and the Ebon Knight. As long as everyone keeps thinking we're with them, we can try and acquire more of these dragon shards and save this world. For now it's best to keep a low profile while we help out these other places torn by war. Speaking of low profile... my disguise worked out well, as embarrassing as it was. Somehow we even convinced Madon and the others that not only was I Amber's sister, but that I personally had went away. It went somewhat like that essentially. I think anyways. And speaking of my disguise... I'm still a little peeved at Amber at forcing it upon me. Supposedly a simple cloak is the ultimate disguise in this world and she had to go the full nine yards... and then it got worse. I wish she wouldn't tempt fate like that, that's just asking for trouble. This outfit is uncomfortable... and I had severely underestimated how heavy long hair would be. Hopefully, with whatever lies in Austria or wherever we're going up ahead, I won't have to do much more than menial labor and can let this nightmare end in peace. ... why do I have the oddest feeling that someone is reading my thoughts? @EpicRome23@The Fire Heart@saga juliet
  12. "Thought is all I can ask that you can give it. But if you really are so dead set on believing that it's foretold you will not survive... well... at least twist that notion into the ferocity in which you fight to the last." Crystal!Mason turned and began to make his way for the door. "As for me, nothing, not even a prophet, can dissuade my thoughts that fate can be fought. It's in our very nature, our very core as people, to fight, be it the enemy, the unfair, or even the impossible. While it may come from another world's values, I do believe it applies here as well." Crystal!Mason remained certain in that fact, as the very future they were fighting to prevent was mentioned to come from a prophet. He opened the door to Anselm's chambers and Eve fell into the room. "Trying to listen in on our conversation?" "N... no?" "Yes." "Well, did you at least hear anything?" "No." "I guess we'll fill you in on what you need to know, if anything. You are welcome back in." The foursome remained in discussion for a very brief time until there were three knocks reverberating through the room.
  13. Crystal!Mason sighed. "It honestly concerns me that your sisters would be so quick to kill over someone having a different political viewpoint than someone else. There's a history behind why we fight, or fought, for it. Just to list off a few things, we fight for freedom because we had a nation that was built with slavery as an economy... human slavery... we had a nation engage in facism and tried to exterminate an entire race, we fought for freedom to give people a choice in how they live their lives... and humorously yet seriously enough, we fought for freedom because a nation was gouging ours with taxes on tea of all things." He chuckled at the last thing. "All of these things were before my time, but the fact of the matter remains in it's why we fought. For my country, and many other countries in my world... we value freedom because it allows us to treat each other as equals. We value it because it gives everyone a voice. We value it because we see it as a basic human right. We still have laws, mind you. Otherwise, as you said, people will go without punishment for things like murder, stealing, etc." Crystal!Mason then sighed once more. "Politics really isn't my cup of tea, I just call it how I see it. And of course... politics is not without it's flaws... I will admit. But that's reaching into personal territory, and I've gone on about this topic long enough." He then shook his head and looked at Anselm. "Look, pushing that topic aside and getting back to the crux of the issue... yes, I do think you are making a mistake. Just because we are in war, you don't have to let your engineering talent gather dust. From my world, we've had many ground-breaking inventions that were created only because we were at war. Technology that was made out of necessity, that became staples in our lives. Computers to store information, canned food to preserve food for long periods of time, walkie-talkies to communicate over long distance, night vision to see in the dark, and even duct tape for... everything, really. Heck, radar to detect planes coming from far away became microwave ovens to cook food quickly. The fact of the matter is you shouldn't let war prevent you from creating your inventions. You'll never know how useful an application would be until it's out there. And sometimes, distributing something to the public at large can be a huge morale boost to the public. And if you're so worried about dying before the war ends... then it's going to happen. Sometimes being fatalistic about your chances actually improves your odds, because you come to think you're going to die and will fight more ferociously. There's a reason the saying is 'There is nothing more dangerous than a man with nothing to lose.' And now I'm getting off topic with the Arts of War... apologies." Crystal!Mason took a moment to catch his breath. "Look, with that... fatalistic topic behind us... you shouldn't let the fact you're a princess shut off your own life. You're you. There's never going to be someone else with your talents, your skills, your mind set. Forget what other people say about destiny, about fate, it's junk. You have a choice on how to live your life. You're in command of your own reins. But it's up to you to take that initiative. If you're content to live in a gilded cage like this, and live life as just a princess, keeping your engineering passion on the side, that's your choice. But I think that's a waste of your talent, and by extension, a waste of what you can impact in life."
  14. Once Anselm had finished, Mason stood up and moved to lean on the table, staring at the picture, thinking about how to best respond. Finally, he did. "You're crazy, you know that? I don't get how anyone can wear stuff like this. Or live this lifestyle." There was an awkward silence. "Then again... it never really was the lifestyle for me to begin with. You're still crazy on the dresses and stuff. I'm still not used to being essentially forced into these outfits. It's not comfortable in the slightest. I feel... wrong." Mason looked up from the photo to look directly at Anselm. "And you're also crazy for not realizing there's an elephant in the room, too. Multiple ones, at that. Now, forgive me for being frank with how I see it... but I've found beating around the bush just complicates things. And before you go off on telling me you hire people to be critical of you... stop. Freedom of speech is a God given right. Everyone has a right to speak their mind. Whether they should or not is another story, but I digress. Your engineering gift... you say you still tinker in your workshop. But... what comes of it in the end? Your engineering talent has a capability to change things in the world... not just sit around on a shelf like a model kit. Granted, I know it takes some time for engineered marvels to catch on... but sometimes it can catch on immediately. Let me guess: you confine anything you make to your chambers? Honestly, if that's true, I think that's a waste of your talent. Engineers have a gift... it's because of them the world where I'm from is far more advanced than this one..." He paused. "Yes, I'm from another world. Another history. Call it crazy, but I've learned to accept the fact, for better or worse. Back on topic... you have a chance to introduce things to this world, and locking it up in your room just because of your role in politics is a waste of talent. You shouldn't let that stop you." Mason stopped to take a breath. "Look, Anselm, I'm not good with politics. I never was. I spent my time as a soldier, fighting battles. It's what I did best. But this... even I can see you're making at least some kind of mistake. Maybe you can't leave. Maybe you can. But I can tell you right now from what I'm hearing and from what I'm thinking, you've settled into a place of content that doesn't let you manifest your true potential."
  15. Mason's gaze kept jumping between the picture and Anselm, both to compare the features and to better study the man known as Severus for future reference. Upon finishing, Crystal!Mason cleared his throat. "Well... with enough study with the picture... I can partially see the similarities between you and the picture. Of course, I doubt the common people know that." He paused, mulling his words. "Anselm, you're right in that I am going to ask why you have not chosen to leave. But you mentioned you were an aspiring engineer. Whatever happened to that talent?" He paused, and then narrowed his eyes slightly. "No... don't tell me you willingly gave that up."
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