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[Antigone Isle] Raid: Into the De-Magicked Zone

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They had finally reached their destination, and already Riley could see just how difficult the mission was going to be. Beyond those walls laid a very likely tyrannical regime, with the means necessary to enforce their oppressive ideals on most others. In a way it reminded the priestess of the Old Ones, before their empire was toppled by the very creatures they enslaved.

After hearing the dead one's idea to infiltrate the city via a sewer duct, Riley gave a small nod to the plan. It would be best to remain as inconspicuous as possible for this mission, seeing as how they were critically outgunned by the more technologically advanced opponent. To make their way through would be difficult, but Riley was confident enough in her skills that she knew she could make it through intact. Without another word she gracefully jumped overboard, a small splash heard as she made contact with the water.

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"Ooh! Through the sewers! How stealthy!"

Issac clapped his hands together rapidly to further signify how excited he was at the prospect of sneaking in through the sewers. He had snuck into many places in all manner of ways; usually melting a lock, or a hole in a roof or something. But sneaking into a sewer someplace was something that he had thus far seen only in fiction. Getting to live it out in real life was one more thing he could check off the bucket list! Maybe if things kept going well, he would get a chance to walk away from an explosion!

"But wait... uh-oh. That's a vacuum lock right there; whole system must be airtight. The moment we open the door it'll flood the pipe! That's not a problem for me; I've got a rebreather in my mask. If only you guys had... hold on a sec."

Issac bolted back to his workspace and began working furiously. It turned out it was a good thing he'd brought so many spare parts. A few minutes later he returned to the group and presented them with thee masks similar to his. 

"Presenting the latest in not drowning technology! Sleek! Stylish! Will keep you from drowning!"

He would give the masks to any who wanted one, and then jumped overboard to join Riley. Issac then swam to sealed pipe and secured a vial of Aether over the locking mechanism of the door. The alchemist signaled for Riley not to be in front of the pipe and waited for her to get out of the way before mentally setting off the charge. The Aether replicated the effects of a HEAT round; pushing a molten slug of copper through the door. The sea in front of the pipe bubbled and hissed as water began to fill the pipe. When it was over, he surfaced and gave the people still on board a thumbs up.

 

 

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Through the sewers? That was stupid, an obvious route, and more than likely the fastest way to find yourself killed. Souji would ignore this standing he made his way to the bow of the boat and looked out to see how far from the land he was. The mission was to steal things, not wade around in the sewers like an obvious target. The city was technologically advanced, and if anyone had done their due diligence to read, listen or ask questions about the area before leaving, they would know that there would more than likely be some sort of countermeasure from invasion by sea, especially in a pipe that close to the shore. It was to obvious, but it seemed one at a time his companions dropped into the sewers like they were first time adventurer’s Souji, had a better idea.

From doing research, he knew that there was already a potential uprising at hand. Where there was tyranny there was a group of people ready to rise up, and those would be the distraction needed to get inside the isles and steal what they needed, not a trip through the sewers of a tenfold technological marvel that specializes in anti-magic operations and deterrence. The idiots, or in this case his comrades took a poor path into the city and were certain to meet an inevitable end. Did no one know how to raid these days? Souji shook his head and slipped off into a cargo container.

Using druidic magic, Souji would take the form of a bird native to the area. Small and black, but he kept his faerie’s eyes. He hopped on his new legs and took fight back to the bow of the ship. There was a slight head tip, that allowed him to calculate where he wanted to fly, and effortlessly he would leave his suicidal party members behind on a flight path that would direct him to the forests outside of the city limits. There, he would hope to look for and find the resistance or a group of resistant magickers willing enough to cause a large distraction so that he could slip in and out with what he needed.

“Never again Rae, will I EVER quest with individuals you select. Trying to get me killed. I will have words with you later.”

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Apparently, Middy is stuck in a dilemma. One option is to join the larger group into the underground sewer and the other is turn into a bird and follow the fae. His first thought was to try to transform into a bird. After a couple failed attempts and slight bruises from falling hard on the deck, he finally realized that going with the larger group would be a slightly better idea. However, getting wet and going through the sewers reminded him of fishes. 

Shrugging those idiotic ideas aside, Middy assessed the current situation. Going through the sewers is a classic idea, a bit disgusting but nonetheless always a good idea. Problem is that, we are not the only ones who would have thought of the idea. This path could possibly be full of twists and turns, leaning on the more lethal side. If only he had not rejected assistance from the Black Head, this would have been easier, even if he only had Little Sans for backup.

Seeing the thumbs up from Isaac, Middy put on the mask he received from Isaac earlier and tried to strip before jumping, only to remember Little San's 'advice' in the ship's holdings hours ago. Making sure his clothes are firmly attached to his body covering all that needs to be covered, Middy jumped into the water in following in Riley and Isaac's wake.

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A tiny blip appeared on the radar screen and then the alarm began to sound. The cockpit of the velocicopter was bathed in piercing red light and the shrill chirp of the MDS. (The MDS, or Magical Detection System, was standard in most patrol and military craft on Antigone. There were rumors that a hand-held version was even in the works.) The flight crew quickly began to run through their protocols for such situations. Coordinates were locked in and forwarded on, the aircraft itself was put into a hard bank so they could turn about. The craft, though seemingly delicate with its rear and overhead propellers moved with some force, it would not even notice a bird flitting past it.

"That hot spot looks to be based on or near that merchant vessel, chief. I'll go ahead and hit the lights and call this in while you take us down." The nav officer  flipped a few switches, flooding the area around the velocicopter in bright light. Another switch let him broadcast to the control center. 'Go ahead unit Bashus Drago 6...' "Copy that central, we are in sector Kilos 7 along the coastal wall. Merchant vessel damaged, confirmed hot spot. We are going in to intercept and get control of the situation. Please send support. Vessel may need a tow to the harbor."

'Copy that Bashus Drago 6. Proud Lion was scheduled to arrive with goods tonight. Proceed with caution.'

The pilot had already pulled the craft down to hover beside the merchant ship. Everything was alight from the aircraft's floodlights, soon the air was filled with the barking of orders. 'Halt, crew of the ship. We have registered a magical disturbance in this area...'

__________________________


Only moments before had the rest of the group been pushed through the opened vacuum hatch into the sewer lines beyond the wall. The rush of water overpowered all but perhaps the creature of the deep. Into the black, tubular world of the vast sewer network did the sea water carry them. It was not until they sloshed into a vast settling tank were they in the clear, though now disoriented and likely bathed in whatever refuse might be around them in the seemingly endless darkness.

Elsewhere, another panel was seemingly calm save for one blinking light. This panel was a large map of the island's infrastructure, hung upon a wall. Several eyes came to rest upon that light. "Sector Kilos 7, hatch 13 appears to have a breach warning. Should we send in a drone, sir?"

'Aye, and seal the area, we had best not flood the sewers if somehow that hatch failed. Let us get some eyes on this 'breach.'

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The crew’s eagerness to cooperate was reassuring. Reyna frowned, however, when Souji took up the form of a bird. Somehow the aura failed to affect him in the ways that it did herself. Perhaps he was using some sort of magic that the antimagic field did not recognize and thus did not nullify. Or maybe he had developed a certain resistance to the aura. Whatever the case, he was clearly still capable of using his abilities, even this close to the city itself. She wondered why he would take advantage of that to break away from the group instead of helping them to get through it together.

How foolish of her to think that they would complete the mission as a group. A strobe light from a single scouting vehicle lit up the side of the boat as she was about to take the plunge. She locked eyes with the captain and a wordless exchange took place. The captain quickly lifted up a small hatch at the front of the ship that led into an unknown darkness below. Reyna didn’t hesitate to hop inside. As the hatch closed over her head, everything went dark. She could hear the soft scratching of a heavy object being dragged over the hatch. The crew had probably moved something there in order to conceal the entrance. There was a splash against the side of the boat, and a large rush of water that followed it. Reyna could only assume that the crew had entered the sewer without her.

And suddenly, everything became very quiet, except for the low humming of the velocicopter’s propeller. Reyna held her breath in anticipation as the vehicle drew closer, landing right next to whatever was on top of the hatch. A man stepped out. She could hear his footsteps echoing against the ceiling of whatever room she was concealed in.

“What seems to be the problem?” the man spoke, “And why are you all staring at me?”

There was a pause. The pause was much too long. It would soon be too obvious that something dubious was going on.

“We hit a pipe,” the captain replied, “I don’t think we’ll be able to move for a while.”

“We detected a magical disturbance here around the ship. I’m going to have to do a search of your boat,” the man said.

“Absolutely! Jeremy, take this man wherever he wishes to go-“

“No Captain. You shall personally give me a tour of your ship,” the man’s voice had a tone of suspicion in it now. Reyna’s eyes widened as she heard him walk towards the hatch. “Starting with the back of the ship.”

“Yes, of course, sir,” the captain replied, leading him albeit hastily to the rear of the boat.

Once the man had gone with the captain, whatever was on top of the hatch was moved aside. Reyna took the chance to peak out.

“It’s all clear Lady Reyna,” the sailor boy whom she had met earlier bent down and said. “We can hide you inside one of the container boxes. The guards aren’t allowed to inspect those unless a further warrant is issued.”

“We must hurry then,” Reyna hoisted the hatch over her head, stepping out while holding up her robes so that she didn’t trip over them. A pair of sailors quickly moved a crate back on top of the hatch where it likely once was.

The sailor boy led her to a container labelled ‘Beta Distract Warehouse’.

“Quickly my lady, we don’t have much time,” he urged.

A warehouse would indeed be an ideal place to scavenge for technology since that was her mission after all. However, another container caught her eye.

“What’s this?” Reyna asked, pointing to a large green container labelled ‘Security and Home Affairs Department’.

“This container will be shipped directly to the home and defence headquarters-” the sailor turned and stared at Reyna wide-eyed in shock, “You can’t be serious! Going there is suicide!”

“Not if I can deactivate certain systems. As long as I don’t deactivate everything, I’ll likely go unnoticed,” she mused to herself. Unlike Souji, she did take into account the situation of her allies stuck in the sewer. If she didn’t do something to disable the underground defence systems, they would be discovered much too quickly. Here, discovery was a far greater threat than death.

Sudden footsteps came from the end of the hallway, and the voice of the captain echoed across the room. Reyna gave the sailor a pleading look, begging for him to trust her. The sailor was conflicted for a while, but he opened up the container nonetheless, ushering her in, before silently clasping the lock back in place.

Then he hurried off just as silently as he had reattached the lock. Just in time, as a pair of footsteps drew closer to the container.

“Aah, I see that you have on board one of our own shipments,” the man said. “Care if I have a look at the contents?”

The sound of keys clinking against one another could be heard.

“Definitely sir, it is your shipment, after all.”

“The new camouflage suits will be a nifty addition to our scouting units.”

It took Reyna less than a second to register the meaning behind the statement. She felt around in the darkness, trying not to make too much noise. At last, her hands wrapped around a package in a basket. She took it out and tore open the plastic packaging as quietly as she could, before chucking the wrapper on a higher shelf. Stripping down to her undergarments, she threw her robes into a corner of the container behind some boxes. She could hear the soft clicking of the advanced combination lock being opened as the captain typed in the password and inserted the master key into the lock head. Bathed in complete darkness, Reyna struggled with the suit, barely able to find the openings where her feet went in. The suit was unusually warm and body-hugging. She slid the suit up her legs and felt it compressing the artificial flesh that she used to create her shape. With much difficulty, she got the top of the suit over her head and got it all the way around. As the front of the container opened up and rays of light broke in, the suit activated, and Reyna disappeared.

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Their mission into the sewers hit an unexpected turn when the tunnel was flooded with an incredible amount of water. Reaching out with her staff, she tried to get everyone with her to grab hold of it as the tip began to glow a soft blue. If they did in time, they would experience a feeling of control and stability within the water, as the Deep One blessed them with her power of the aquatic realm. With each of the team members who were willing or able to grab onto her staff using it as a lifeline, they were able to walk their way through the system of tunnels until they finally reached the tank, hopefully avoiding any injuries they could have acquired without her help.

With graceful steps she walked out of the water and onto a catwalk installed into the side of the tank, using her magic to create rudimentary stairs from the sewage around her. Though the others may have found the stench to be disagreeable with their senses, Riley found it rather pleasant in comparison to other scents she had experienced. Smelly doesn't even begin to describe the odor a Shoggoth can emit on a warm enough day.

"Come. We must hurry before we are caught by their patrols." Judging by the map on the wall, there was a lot of ground to cover, and not a lot of time to do it in if they wanted to remain unseen.

As they traveled through the winding tunnels and access ways, Riley couldn't help but feel bored by the vacant walls. These humans were supposed to be technologically advanced, yet their architecture suggested something more bland and uninspired. Smooth concrete walls for what seemed like miles, without a single trace of design in any of those blank, gray surfaces. Hopefully there would be something more interesting to look at when they were able to infiltrate the top side of this city. If not, then it would only make her less sympathetic to the overall plight of the people against the oppressive government. When the soul of a civilization is dead, there is no saving the body.

Somewhere the sound of a faint hum could be heard, noticeably moving in their direction. Without another word, Riley jumped back into the sewer, concealed in its waters through her magic as she blended perfectly within it's murky depths. There could be no chances taken when it came to getting caught, and the priestess refused to allow herself to be defeated just because she wanted to walk on dry land.

The other's survival would depend on whether or not they joined her. Having already experienced a taste of what her power could do for them, the others would know she would extend another of her blessings to them should they join her. Out of all the choices one could make, this one was rather unpleasant, but they could not afford to be caught by the drone closing in on their position. As soon as she was satisfied it had not seen them, they would continue underwater for a time, until they happened upon a hatch that lead out of the sewers. Should any of her companions be foolish enough to try and take on the drone on their own, she would not hesitate to leave them behind to their fate.

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                Souji noted the incoming, but by the time the magical detection team would sortie, he would have blended in with the local wildlife. A curious thing, he thought. So, they did have a radar to detect magic, but their equipment itself ran off magic. Magitech, that worked in an “anti-magic’’ field. Presumably, the magic field was erected to prevent offensive magic. Magitech itself was a form of magic, so an anti-magical field that prevented the use of magic would, therefore, prevent the use of their own technology.1 Souji adjusted his wing pattern to break from the blend and made his way into the canopy of trees where he would be safe.

                Looking around from a branch, the fae attempted to track down the rebel magickers. It would be a difficult task, but one that would pay off in the end. He looked for any signs. Broken branches, footprints, scent. He flew low, from branch to branch searching in a patterned grid. He mapped the point in his mind, each square 500m by 500m and labeled by letter. He would highlight any disturbance that looked to be made by humanoid and make a mental note of it. Of course, rebel factions were generally extremely careful, so each clue would be very few and far between. The fae had about a three-hour period before his shifting would return to normal, as, maintaining a druidic shapeshift would cause him the need to channel magic which would obviously alert the patrols. However, this might be a clever way to get into the city if he needed to do so. He would have smiled if he could.

=======

After he collected the information he needed, the fae would take a hidden seat and allow his form to shift itself back to normal. He dropped from the trees, withdrew his sword and cut himself across the chest. He then sliced his own leg and placed a nick above his eye, so blood ran down his face. All the while he rolled and scraped about to make the area look as if there had been a struggle.

That’s when he fired off magic, thrice.

He placed each small arcane bolt, one in the tree, one in the earth, and one in his own leg leaving a scorch. He then took his place under a tree and waited for the patrols to arrive.

1.The use of magitech as the default technology is documented in the island lore, specifically stating that anti-magical fields prevent harmful magic from being used, but not all magic as there are forms of magic that can be used in the city with proper permits.

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As he was pulled into the pipe in a rush of water that left him helpless to even tell up from down; Issac considered that Souji may have had a point when he decided not to go through the sewers. Not that the handsome bastard had offered up any plan of his own besides turning into a bird; something that the alchemist was fairly certain most of the group couldn't do. Maybe if he had turned into a bird big enough to carry them into the city; but he hadn't offered, and nobody had asked, so he would have to chalk that up as a missed opportunity. Or perhaps he had simply intended to allow their transport to arrive at their destination, and then disembark like normal people. Hindsight being 20/20, he now realized that would have been a perfectly serviceable plan, but oh well! This would make for a far better story; assuming of course he lived to tell it.

Just as he was wondering how he would vomit while wearing a mask, he felt himself come to a stop as he instinctively grabbed onto the firs handhold that he could find. When he looked up, he saw that he was holding onto Riley's staff, which seemed to afford him and anyone else touching it stability. Getting to his feet, he gave the fish woman a thumbs up, and walked with her through the tunnel until they landed in a storage tank. He was looking for a ladder up to the catwalks above when Riley created a stairway out of sewage, and he gladly followed her up onto it.

"I have to say, I've never had a plan go to shit so fast!" Issac said, cackling at his own joke before saying completely seriously, "I make these jokes so nobody else has to."

The next twenty minutes or so were spent in silence as they walked through a series of tunnels, navigating the catwalks through the giant structure. Eventually the silence was disturbed by what was undoubtedly a drone coming toward their location. Riley jumped into one of the pools below to hide, but Issac had a better idea. He hid by an intersection where he heard the drone coming, and waited for it to pass by. When it did so, he lept out behind it and injected it with a full dose of Aether from his syringe.

The truly wonderful thing about Aether was that it was made up of nanomachines made of a special alloy with unparalled transmugenic potential. If he wanted to do something simple, he could just transmute the material into something flammable, or really cold, or sticky. But if he wanted to get fancy, he could do as he did now, and used the Aether to rewire the drone entirely. When it was done, the drone was his to command via the mental link afforded to him by the Aether. 

"Okay, first things first!"

Issac used his newfound assistant to send an all clear signal back to central command. But once that was done, there was so much more that he could do; like access the cities network via the drones connection to the servers. A quick search revealed a building marked as, "Top Secret Storage." After downloading a few more things for later, Issac commanded the drone to return to base.

"Whelp, good news is, I know where to go! And I know how to get out of this sewer! Follow me!"

With that, Issac took off, hoping the others would have the sense to follow him.

 

Edited by danzilla3

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The pilot keyed the last of the combination and took a step back from the container doors. With a heavy clang, the bolts shifted out of position and the doors were free to be pulled open. Each man moved to pull a door to allow the light of the ship's hold to better reach the contents of the container. The pilot nodded to the captain, taking a cursory glance around the crates and other assorted containers in the space. Smirking, he took a few steps further into the container. The sounds of his boot heels clicking against the steel flooring echoed faintly through the entire cargo bay. His steeled gaze inspected the contents, passing over labels, packing dates, and the like. He finally paused at one of the crates and moved its lid aside... the new uniforms. A brief smile brushed his lips before he dismissed it. Hastily, he replaced the lid and walked swiftly back out of the container. A slight shiver had begun to snake it way down his spine, as if he had brushed against a block of ice with bare skin.

"Captain, let us seal this back up and continue our walk. I would like to get to the bottom of this disturbance quickly, and get this heap towed to port. It would not do well to have our shipment resting at the bottom of the sea..." his voice was stern still as it trailed off. He re-locked the container and motioned for the captain to lead the way. The pair continued to work through the ship's hold, spot checking containers and working their way back up to the crew's quarters. While they continued their inspection, the navigator remained on deck overseeing arrangements to tow the vessel to port. Two barges had already arrived and were securing their towing lines to the bow of the ship. Once secure, the barges could begin towing the Proud Lion to port. There, they could continue their investigation while they moved cargo and began repairs to the ship's hull.

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The 'all-clear' signal came through at the central control hub. Officers nodded and lowered the alert status of the systems. The drone could be dismissed and the flood hatches were restored to their standby status. A work order was issued for a waiting maintenance crew to go and verify the status of the systems on the 'faulty' sewer hatch. From that point, it would only be a matter of time before they verified the nature of the 'fault.' However, it would likely be too late to intercept any intruders within the outer sewers. 

Elsewhere in the central control hub, reports were being cross referenced and rechecked as the odd events were coming together to suggest a breach. Defense Commander Britton listened quietly to the brief but curious list of events. Magic alert along the coast, sewer hatch fault in the same section of coastal defense, and now that both of those had been 'resolved,' another magical signature had been detected. This time the signature was further inland, the report indicated the wild beyond the city as opposed to the coastline. Could the fiends have made it so far after the breach? Perhaps it was a coordinated effort, help from the outside to aid in the rebels plight. Free use of magic had been outlawed some time ago, only regulated, government authorized magic was permitted. Many of the magicking crowd had found great displeasure in that decision, and to this day, the defense committee had not rest.

Britton bounced his pipe upon the top of the conference table, visual frustration beginning to manifest itself over the imposing figure of the professional soldier. Something was going on, and he was quite certain he was going to get to the bottom of this matter. Giving everything another moment's thought, he passed the orders along. "Chief, lock down the Proud Lion. Put the vessel and its crew under strict quarantine, double the guard down at the port near the vessel. I have a feeling they brought some stowaways. The port guard should know who the regular crew members are and who are not. Be sure they keep an eye on traffic in that area as well. Have the captain and the load master re-questioned. 

"See if that sewer maintenance crew can be expedited at all. Have a couple guards go along with them as well, and see if any tunnel rats are on standby to go run the lines in the area... and as for this latest report..." Britton paused, raising the pipe stem to his lips. His teeth clenched around the stem as his hands came to rest before him on the conference table. "Have a detachment respond to this area. Be prepared for anything out of the ordinary. I anticipate an ambush. The events were not entirely sequential. This event in the forest could be separate, particularly as rebel activity has increased over the past months. I just rather not take any chances. If there are any witnesses to any of these events, bring them in to a local station. They could have some trace information that could prove useful." Britton waved the chief off to their duty. 

Stormy eyes watched as the subordinate moved to exit the conference hall. "And chief!" The younger soldier halted, "Sir?" they replied. "Be sure everyone is packing the heat. I would like prisoners, but I am not about to give this island over to those damn rebels."

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An armored response vehicle rolled to an abrupt stop as it came upon a fallen individual. The area was correct by the charts, but the detector was only so accurate still. A captain and another soldier exited the vehicle, leaving the driver and another still inside. Two heavy metal bolts slid back and snapped forward sharply. The two eyed the individual from behind the cover of their transport. Evidence of a magical assault could be seen all around. Scorch marks in the trees and on the ground near the 'victim.' The victim appeared to have taken a hit to the extremities. After a moment's evaluation, the captain motioned for the other to follow his lead. Both were outfitted from head to toe in grey combat armor, resistant to cuts, blows, and to some degree magical attack. The captain wore dark glasses and a soldier's cap, the younger wore a helmet. 

"Hey there! You breathing over there?" the captain called. He motioned for his subordinate to move in closer. The soldier kept their combat rifle at the ready, all while moving alongside the fallen boy. "It's just a boy, captain. Seems to be anyway."

"Wake him, if he is indeed injured. Commander Britton has specific orders, particularly if this individual was indeed attacked. They may have some valuable information concerning the attack and the rebels." The captains hand tightened about his rifle's grip. He had been fighting to suppress the unruly magic users for a time. Friends of his had even fallen to their hand. "C'mon Vassilik, if he can move on his own, or not."

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Like a recently deceased domesticated fish flushed down the drain, Middy was sloshed and turned about by the sewer water already regretting his inability to become a bird. It would have been easier if he can fly with Souji in the air, feeling the joys of flight and aviation and to have the ability to drop air strikes in the form of avian droppings upon the unsuspecting guards and prisoners alike. It may have been next to impossible but Middy is starting to believe that if he tried hard enough it might just happen for him. Truly, a better alternative than being treated like a fish while stewing in envy at the fae's feathered transformations.

Finally, Middy found solace in grabbing hold of Riley's rod and even more solace in clutching it together with the his raid brethren. He followed Riley navigate through the system of tunnels taking mental note of his surroundings and the direction they are taking, cross-referencing it with the scant amount of information the Black Head's cartel manage gather. There may have been a couple of sleeper agents on the isle but per cartel regulations, agents are not expected to interact with each other. The less contact they have with the cartel and with each other, the less likely they'll be exposed. As they all poured out into the pipe, Middy pulled out the second gift he received from Little Sans form his coat's breast pocket, a small vial containing a dangerously large pink colored tablet. True, popping pills may not make his problems go away, but at it could keep the guards of his back. The pill, conceptualized by the Blackmaker and further developed by the Black Teddy, is a modified spell power converter. Ingesting it would instantaneously cripple the person's magical abilities and properties and instead convert it into something similar to psychic or esper abilities. In this case the pill he holds will allow Middy to produce electricity and manipulate electromagnetism. The only problem, the pill is a bit too large to swallow.

Now that he has taken good look at it, it looks more like a pink chicken egg than an actual medicinal pill. Is it even going to fit? Too  Cursing his foster Aunt Teddy for making the pill, Middy willed himself to swallow the suspiciously oversized pill. A lot of gagging ensued. Within the next few minutes, a dozen facial expressions formed on his face as the pill traveled down his throat passing through his digestive track and safely settling in his stomach, all of this without lubrication. Wiping off the tears from his eyes and the drool from his face, Middy used his newfound abilities to cling to the steel bars and catwalks in the ceiling by magnetism and proceeded to shadow Isaac and Riley.

 

 

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Riley would follow the others, but chose to stay under the cover of the sewer water. There was much she could do at this position, with the element of surprise a valuable asset should they encounter enemies. It was difficult to tell where they needed to go from below the water, but she felt at the very least the others weren't foolish enough to get lost in these tunnels.

So far they were in the clear, but there was no telling when that would shift out of their favor. Continuing their stealth was paramount for this operation, which was why she chose to remain in these fetid waters. It was near suffocating, but she did not wish to see what would be in store for her should she be captured by these humans. Riley was by far the strangest of the group, possibly the strongest, guaranteeing a gruesome series of experiments in their tyrannical hands. Not even the promise of being accepted as part of a group was enough to keep her lips sealed.

During her travels, the priestess would begin to summon the powers of the eldritch void to this plane. Should there be an encounter with armed guards, they would receive a dangerous reminder of their insignificance in the cosmos.

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Hacking the drone had been a very wise course of action; as the sewer system was positively labyrinthine, and it could have taken them hours to find their way out unaided. Thanks to Issac's hack however, he had managed to not only find them an exit, but one that was only a few miles away from the storage facility. Not that he expected much thanks from his companions; one of whom had elected to stay submersed in sewage even after he had taken care of the security, and the other who had started making gagging noises out of nowhere. When he had turned to check on the lad, he had found him clinging to the ceiling as he followed behind the masked man. It was always nice to be around people as weird as he was, so he was enjoying their company.

Twenty minutes later they came upon a ladder leading up to a manhole cover; at which point Issac turned to address his comrades.

"Right! So if I read that map correctly, this should come out in an alley; so there shouldn't be to many prying eyes. We still need to be cautious though, as a group of people as... eclectic as us will get noticed pretty fast. Once we're up there, I have a plan; but I'm gonna need your help wall crawler."

Issac pulled out a syringe filled with Ether, "You're the most normal looking of us all, so what I need you to do is take this, and inject it into the first car you see. From there I can handle the rest. Good plan? Good plan."

The hyperactive alchemist was halfway up the ladder before anybody could possibly respond to his question; and moments later he had poked his head up through the manhole to scout the area. Once he was reasonably sure the coast was clear, he got out and took another look around. Still undetected, he looked down sewer.

"Ok kid, you're up!"

@Zashiii @carrionjackal

 

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Reyna held her breath as the seconds ticked by painfully. The man came in, observed the contents of the cargo, and left without another word. From the goosebumps on his arms, she knew that he could sense the cold, but didn’t think much of it. Once the man had left, the next course of action for would be to destroy any and every trace of her presence in the container immediately.

Working silently, she pulled up her robe from the corner of the room. She brushed her palms along its smooth surface, somewhat reluctant to commit to the action she had in mind. Nevertheless, she tore the soft fabric with her bare hands, rending it to strips and pieces that were no longer recognizable as part of her clothing. When she was finally satisfied with the remains of her robe, she scattered them within the corners of the container, blending in with the dust that was beginning to build up. She considered bringing the bullwhip, but figured that it would make her presence an easy giveaway if someone was to bump into her. Alas, the parting of another item that had followed her for years.

Now completely hidden but unarmed, Reyna leaned against the wall next to the door, counting her fingers in her head. Several moments later, she heard the engine of the ship roar to life, and the Proud Lion was back on its way to the dock. When it did indeed hit the dock, the sound of hurried footsteps was heard all over the ship. The door to the container was opened once again, and a pair of soldiers stepped inside. Their emblems blazed with anti-magic enchantments, and Reyna could feel their very presence eating away at her power. They stayed for an excruciatingly long time, checking every nook and cranny of the room, all but that one space next to the door where Reyna hid in plain sight.

“Hey, over here! I found something,” one of the guards called. Coughing as the dust invaded his nostrils, he pulled out the bullwhip which was hidden behind the crate. Both guards stared meaningfully at the weapon for a few good seconds.

“Must have fallen in by accident,” the other guard said, much to Reyna’s relief. “The people that package these things need to be more careful. If we had glassware in here, this could’ve easily caused damage.”

When the two soldiers had finally left, she let out a long sigh, a silly grin forming on her face as she exhaled. The thrill of risk was making her dizzy, but she didn’t know what to think of it. Was she actually having… fun?

It was only moments later that Reyna felt the ground under her being lifted upwards as her container was loaded into a vehicle to be delivered to its rightful destination.

Now crouching down on her knees, she began to take in the exhaustion that the excitement had brought upon her. Closing her eyes, she prepared herself for the bumpy ride that was to come.

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Eyebrows furrowed in confusion, Middy accepted the Ether-filled syringe Isaac pulled out. While Isaac was busy securing their the outside of the man hole, Middy inspected the syringe. There seems to be some strange substance inside. Maybe he could retrieve a few samples after this raid, with Isaac's approval of course. This could be a good present for his auntie Khakina when he visits the flying ship "Witchcraft" later. Aunti Khaki loved this kinds of things on a technical and mechanical perspective. Finally receiving the go signal from the hyperactive dude, Middy responded with a thumbs up and proceeded to go out exit the manhole and into the world outside

As his body spilled out into the street outside Middy fell flat on all fours like a roach. Among the electromagnetic spectrum there are two that Middy is proficient in using, radio wave and light waves. Imitating his auntie Sera, Middy bent the visible light wave around him making him disappear from plain view, undetected by normal sight. Hugging low to the ground, Middy slowly crawled his way toward the nearest vehicle. While his light trick may fool any innocent bystander, but a trained eye might spot the slight distortion in the empty space where his figure is hiding. As he inched nearer to the car, he performed his next trick. Emitting weak radio waves, Middy became a human radar with an effective range of a few feet. In this mode he can detect any incoming figures but only limited to at most ten feet from his current position. Despite being an inferior version of his auntie Sera's passive radar skill and that constantly emitting radio waves can be taxing in his body, he proceeded to use it for his safety and of his associates. He pricked the car with the syringe painstakingly injected the Ether into it, his mind staying vigilant to his surroundings. He had no idea what this Ether is capable of, but if it suddenly does something flashy, he is more than prepared to make a run for it.

Finally done with injecting all the Ether, Middy headed back to the manhole, turned off his cloaking and detection skills, and returned Isaac his syringe. With his task done, Middy flopped back onto the ground to rest and waited for his next task.

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