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File: Konigsburg.jpg (461 KB, 1248x832)
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Your name is Elise. Elise Martins. And, to put it simply, you are not normal.

What you are is a mutant— one of the many few in Konigsburg who possess strange and unnatural abilities due to the explosion of FutureLabs’ particle accelerator.

You have two brothers, Matt and John, but it's only Matt who knows of your powers. You’ve also made a friend, Bernard, who also happens to be a mutant.

Together, the three of you operate under the title of the M-Guard, saving mutants from the ever-encroaching hands of FutureLabs while also working to shut the organization down for good.

>Previously on Mutant!Quest: While enjoying your afternoon in your usual café, you had noticed some injuries on the waiter, Victor Valjean— injuries whose timing and placing had been far too exact with Sopor’s to be a coincidence— leading you to conclude that the mutant Sopor, who you had saved the night prior, was the same individual serving Matt's and Bernard's drinks. However, by some terrible chance, Valjean also happens to be aware of your identity, as well as the identities of the rest of the M-Guard.
>>
>>4324253

Character Info and stats (Now includes a side-character page, which is currently under construction!):

https://pastebin.com/u/Siiren_QM

Previous thread(s):

http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/4158908/

http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/4170002/

http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/4207482/

http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/4252203/

http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/4292764/

Update Twitter:

twitter.com/qmsiren
>>
>>4324253

>Now, what do you do?
>Don’t say anything. This is clearly Sopor’s/Valjean’s way of saying “I know you’re on to me; leave me alone if you want our truce to remain in place.”
>You don’t have time for this. You have bigger fish to fry than a criminal mutant trying to get your attention for whatever reason. Say that to him on your way out.
>Embrace your inner-cannibal, and give Valjean a nice, subtle threat…
>Call Valjean out right here, right now and ask him what he thinks he’s accomplishing with this.
>Resolve to come back later and confront Valjean before the café closes.
>write-in
>>
>>4324270
>You don’t have time for this. You have bigger fish to fry than a criminal mutant trying to get your attention for whatever reason. Say that to him on your way out.
>>
>>4324295
+1
How about Just the "You don't have time for this" part?
>>
>>4324270
>initiate rap battle to the death
>>
>>4324358
ok, just say that we don't have time for his games
>>
>>4324383
+1 act bored to neutralize jerk
>>4324270
>Call Valjean out right here, right now and ask him what he thinks he’s accomplishing with this.
>>
Shit we're all color-coded to perfection here!!!!

I will go back to writing actual quest now...
>>
>>4324295
>>4324358
>>4324383
>>4324720

You don’t have time for this— not at all, you think— especially now with everything that is currently happening. The criminal mutant that stands (limps) before you would just be another thing to tack onto the long list of bullshit that you have to deal with, so you’re just going to high-tail it out of here and go back to doing what you had been, which is saving mutants and preparing for your next move against FutureLabs.

“I don’t have time for your games.” You pointedly say right after Matt and Bernard have finished their drinks, and then you’re off the bar stool and out the door, Matt’s and Bernard’s questioning gazes following you as you make your way out the door.

If Valjean thinks that making allusions to your diet is enough to accomplish anything, then he’s very much wasting his time.

“Ellie, care to share what that was about?” Matt asks, once you’re out of the cafe.

“Valjean’s Sopor.” The words are low-drawn hiss.

“Come again?” Bernard’s voice is disbelieving, while Matt is silent.

“Valjean. Is. Sopor.” You enunciate each word clearly but still low enough for only your ears to hear. “He has the same injuries in the same place with the same arm and leg—and I don’t know how he knows, but he knows about us…”

“Well shit.” Bernard says after a dreadfully long silence. “Whaddya think tipped him off?”

You honestly don’t know, so you don’t have an answer for that, and neither does Matt, whose eyes are narrowed in consternation; the best guess you have is that Valjean had taken a look under Matt’s or Bernard’s mask during the first time you encountered him as Sopor.

>(1/2)
>>
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>>4324782

“Hey do you think he’s the kind of guy to spit in stickface’s coffee with him being Crux and all?” Bernard asks, off-topic.

“No.” Matt shakes his head. “…but I should’ve known something wasn’t right when Valjean kept getting my orders consistently wrong…” And then he mutters beneath his breath “…freaking jackass…”

“Hey— don’t think too hard on it, guys. If he tries to tattle on us or does somethin’ stupid, you guys got me, while that dirtbag’s got absolutely nothin.’” Bernard has an arm around either of you. “He’s probably just messin’ with us cause he’s still attached to all of that Crux nonsense and has a thing against stickface. Hopefully Conduit’s doin’ his job like he’s supposed to… you think that’s actually gonna help?”

Much like every other mutant you had tried to inform about Pharos’ powers, Conduit hadn’t taken the news of Pharos’ deceit very well. However, the evidence had been played before him was impossible to deny, and you have to wonder if the memories you had given the bomb-maker were strong enough to overcome Pharos’ foothold on the minds of the Crux mutants trapped in FutureLabs.

“We can only hope, Bernard.” You tell him, and, since it’s out of your control, hoping is all you can do.

>With the task force still looming over your head, there's still so much to do, so what now?
>Check over the data you from the hard drive.
>Figure out what to do about Eddie.
>Reassess your strength levels.
>write-in
>>
>>4324786
>Reassess your strength levels.
Took my a while to get the joke
>>
>>4324786
>check the hard drive
>>
OP is suddenly tired. Will be back to count votes tomorrow.

updates: twitter.com/qmsiren
>>
>>4324786
>Reassess your strength levels.
I don't know what this means so let's go with this
>>
>>4324786
>>Reassess your strength levels.
>>
>>4324945
Yo
Yo
Yo
Yo my name is Valjean but it's really Sopor
I work a full time job but I'm still so poor
I wanted to be Crux so bad but the normies ganked it
Am I supposed to thank a normie
Who doesn't even tip a homie
Here's a tip homie, put it in your mouth
It's too hot, it'll burn your tongue and you'll spit it out
I didn't spit in your drink although I could've
You wouldn't reach my level if you could do a pullup

That was fucking terrible I hope my phone breaks before I post this
>>
>>4325020

This means a reassessment of our powers to see how far our metaphorical level-grinding’s gotten us.

>>4325033

> That was fucking terrible I hope my phone breaks before I post this

This is a modern masterpiece.
>>
Slight delay as OP struggles to get back to a computer...
>>
>>4325025
>>4325020
>>4324796

>>Reassess your strength levels.

With the task force looming overhead, testing your powers in order to see how strong you’ve gotten is a good way to see just how far you can push your limits outside of a life-or-death scenario. The same goes for Bernard, and, even though he had good control over his power since you started training with him, his range and stamina in his teleports have greatly increased. Matt, too, has become a powerhouse with his continued training, and you think that once he reaches his next growth spurt the results will really show.

“If we’re goin’ to go all out, should we really be using the beach? Somethin’ tells me that’s just beggin’ for someone to come and see us.” Bernard is the first to raise his concerns. Although nobody generally comes around the area where the rocky beach is, making enough noise is sure to grab the attention of a too-curious passerby.

“Then we can go to the lake, cause I have some stuff I want to test while we’re outside of city limits.” Matt says, the solution an obvious one. “And there’s more shit to break for you guys— well, not so much for you, Bernard, as for Ellie, but it’s better that we don’t make our beach look like a warzone.” That’s a very good point there, you think.

“So…” Bernard drawls out, green eyes inquiring. “Where is this lake?”

“It’s about an hour-or-so drive to the site and and another hour or two of a hike to the actual lake itself.” “You’ve never been to Howler’s Lake?”

“No, but I’ve been up by Green Lakes Park where they have the one of the Vanderbilt Mansions.” That… happens to be all the way in New York.

“Alright then. We can leave in about an hour to get all of our stuff together.” Matt then pulls out a credit card that you know is neither yours nor his and hands it to Bernard. “Putting you in charge of sustenance, cause we’re not eating lake fish when we can eat actual food.” Actual food would happen to be copious amounts of chips and candy, which used to be a large staple of your old diet. “Meet us behind our apartment when you got the goods.”

“Sure thing, stick!” Bernard gives a blinding grin, and then he’s gone in a flash of green.

Once back at the apartment, you and Matt set to packing the necessities you need for the trip, which is just a bedroll and extra clothes for yourself. Matt’s bag, surprisingly, is packed to the brim, so much that you can see one of the corners of his laptop from the outside of the bag.
>>
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>>4326363

Of course John is curious as to what you and Matt are doing with bags of camping gear, and you simply tell him that Bernard wanted to see the lake, because he’d never been there, and, while that’s not a lie, you do feel a twinge of guilt for whatever reason; perhaps it’s because John had wanted to take you there himself before his break ended, but, if he doesn’t seem too bothered by it, then you suppose you shouldn’t be either.

When you meet Bernard, he’s carrying what appears to be an obscene amount of junk food (though you think you see some granola bars buried somewhere in the mix of things), and, once that’s loaded into the car, the three of you are set and are able to make it to Howler’s lake in record time.

The hike goes on until the lake is finally in view, and then Bernard has you in a teleport before there’s the waters of Howler’s lake lapping at your feet. That teleport saved you a good forty-five minutes of walking, you think, as you take in the familiar scenery.

You haven’t been to Howler’s lake in a long while, but the sight of the still yet expansive water along with the surrounding greenery instills within you a feeling of calm. In fact, you would almost be tempted to jump right into the lake right now just to enjoy yourself, but you’re here for business— anything else you do can come afterwards.

There are several things that you could do all the way out here, from testing your strength in various ways to seeing just how far you can stretch your senses.

It hadn’t been something you noticed right off the bat, but you know for a fact that your regeneration has also been improving with each fight. You wonder if it’s your body’s way of adapting to what you’ve been doing, because, when you first became a mutant, the reformation of skin and bone was at a crawl. Nowadays, you can feel the speed at which the tissues and muscle seal themselves together, as well as where new veins and sinew are regrown, but there’s not much of a way you could test that all the way out here in the wilderness.

Unless Matt got a gun of course, which he totally could much in the same way he acquires everything else he wants. You doubt he’d shoot you if you asked, even with the reasoning that it would help beef up your regeneration; plus, you don’t think the trend of FutureLabs using actual guns on you is going away any time soon— you’ll probably have plenty more opportunities to deal with their bullets.

In any case, what do you wish to test out first and foremost?
>Your strength— destroy lots of shit!
>Your agility— jumping and whatnot
>Your senses— see how far you can stretch them
>otHEr
>>
>>4326374
>Your agility— jumping and whatnot
>>
>>4326363
>under 6 ft considered below average height
Found the girl
>>
>>4326464
>SENSES
Oh wait TECHNICALLY I'm calling Sopor a girl
>>
>>4326464
>>4326466

That's Matt.

Matt doesn't like masked douchebags calling him a midget.

Someday, Matt will achieve a height of 6'2''

That day is not today...
>>
let’a
>>
>>4326535

>otHEr

let’s go mad
>>
>>4326374
>>4326363
>Your strength-- destroy lots of shit!
I'm actually kind of into the idea of getting shot. Or at least figuring out the limits of our durability. How hard can we punch something before something in our arm breaks from the force of the impact?
>>
We will take a roll between everyone's options in ten minutes unless there's another vote.
>>
>>4326374
>>Your agility— jumping and whatnot

When it comes to fights AND heroing, Speed Kills. Agility and smarts can make up for raw power in a lot of cases, but not vice versa. Senses would be good, but they're a bonus.
>>
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Shitpost intermission while I finish up the update.
>>
>>4326604
I feel this but I want echolocation
>>
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>>4326403
>>4326604

>Agility

Your fish form covers your body in a moment’s instant before you break off into a sprint towards the forest, and your body is fresh from the recent energy from the sustenance you had given it today, muscles primed and ready to utilize the nutrients wrought from your feed. In this wooded lake area, there are no shortage of trees for you to use— trees of all sizes and heights.

A leap, and you’re sent flying into the thicket. Wind whips in your face and throws your hair backwards, and you get a faceful of leaves more times than you would care to admit, but, soon, you’re leaping from one bough to the next at breakneck speed.

Kicking off the side of one thick trunk and swinging off of the next branch that comes into your reach, you find that the act of moving through the trees requires a lot more finesse than just leaping up and down Konigsburgs tall, gleaming buildings. And it’s a little bit more of a learning curve, as opposed to the mainly-flat city buildings and wide, open concrete jungle you’re used to, but the challenge is a welcome one.

Faster and faster, until the world around you becomes nothing more than a blur of greens and browns, of smells and shapes and quick-react motions; and, when the act of simply acrobatting off of trees loses its sparkle, it’s easy to envision the trunks and boughs as targets— targets on which you can implement your martial arts skills in conjunction with your agility.

Your fist effortlessly breaks through a tree trunk that you imagine to be a faceless grunt, and then you’re pushing off towards the next bough.

Again, you land a kick that sends an unsuspecting branch hurtling towards the ground. There’s more wind in your face, more splinters of wood flying in all directions, as the satisfying crackle of the trees reawakens that instinctual half of your brain. But you don’t stop where you’re at; you keep going, because it’s cathartic and enjoyable in a number of ways.

What’s more? This is practice for the real thing-- the task force-- and that fight with Valjean as Sopor had been a reminder for you that you need to be ready for whatever plans they might have in store.

So you need to keep going, and you want to do so, that insistent mental thrumming rising all the while. However, in the back of your mind, you’re faintly reminded of a lapse— a very recent lapse in memory from a very recent feeding. Only because your mind is going down a similar tangent as earlier does this happen to catch your attention.

>what do you do?
>Keep going— see what happens when you push your limits!
>Stop where you’re at, take a breather, and mentally reassess yourself
>write-in
>>
>>4326754

If you go back to thread #03, I mentioned that fish have a sense of preprioception in which they can sense changes in pressure/motion through their fins.
We happened to realize that we had it after getting a nat 100 in the bank, so we technically have something similar to echolocation.
>>
>>4326757
>Stop where you’re at, take a breather, and mentally reassess yourself
Let's see what our brain has in store for us
>>
>>4326757
>inb4 we ate a squirrel
>>
>>4326781

I think option 2 is just for calming down.
>>
>>4326757
>Keep going— see what happens when you push your limits!
WE MUST PUSH OURSELVES IN ORDER TO ACHIEVE GROWTH
>>
Rolled 89 (1d100)

>>4326757
>>4326892
-1 no to eating the neighbor's baby
>stop
>>4326762
[zalgo]maximum perception[/zalgo]
>>
>>4327194
>89
>"zalgo"
Poetic really
>>
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>>4326815
>>4327194

We're in a forest. Where are the squirrels and shit at? Nowhere!!! NOWHEEEERRRRRE!!!
>>
>>4327194
>>4326781

4:20-- early update!!! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gII-ghI2_8k

>stop

You stop in your tracks right where you are, because your mind is rising to that same crescendo that it had earlier in the morning, and you realize that you’re not in the best frame of mind from all of the stuff that has happened in the past twenty-four hours— not that you usually let anything from your fights bother you, because you do it so often, but it’s not every day you get yourself sniped, nearly lose control of yourself, and then have someone call you out on your identity in such a short amount of time. Sans that delicious bluefin you had eaten, it’s been a pretty rotten twenty-four hours, all things considered.

Out of a sick sense of curiosity, you might have given in to that instinctual, unconscious state, because this might’ve been a chance to see if there was anything more to it. However, you don’t know how long it would take for you to get out of said state, and you wouldn’t want to risk the safety of Matt and Bernard in the off-chance that they are unable to react to you fast enough. Perhaps another day when you actually inform them beforehand, so you don’t end up turning your pleasant lake-trip into a real life horror film.

You’re in a small clearing now, where trees are bent and destroyed all around you. Some boughs are still attached to the larger, sturdier trees, but only just barely, while you can see the marks of your fists in the broad, wooden trunks. because you’re already strong and know enough martial arts to do a number on people. Couple those things with agility, and you think you could be unstoppable.

It’s a good time as any to head back to camp, where you find Bernard already fast asleep. You think he must have tried to test his own limits with his powers, and you wonder how much further the Blonde can teleport at this point. Matt, meanwhile, is click-clacking away on his laptop, though you also see some makeshift targets set at varying distances from your camp.

>(1/2)
>>
>>4327763

“What’s with the targets?” You’re wondering what they were for.

“Trying to see if a slingshot would be a good long-range weapon.” It is then that you notice the slingshot lying on the ground beside him.

“Any luck?”

“Well, it’s not too hard to learn, but, even if I kept practicing and got good enough at it, FutureLabs’ agents wear way too much shit for any projectile that’s not a bullet to be effective.” Matt then proceeds to mutter beneath his breath. “Bastards…”

“Keep it anyway— you never know when you’ll need it, and it’s definitely small enough to fit on your belt.” You think your reasoning is rock-solid.

Stealing a glance to Matt’s laptop, you notice that he’s using Chitter of all things. It’s only slightly weird, because you know that your brother has a vehement disdain for all things social media, whether it be out of paranoia or whatever else.

In any case, Matt knows your question before you even open your mouth, and he tells you that he’s been using Chitter to see what happens if he posts anything FutureLabs or mutant-related outside of city limits. Upon returning to Konigsburg, he would see if the posts were visible within the city, and then you would help him destroy the laptop right afterwards.

Now, Matt’s just posting general slurs and stuff about mutant rights to see how far that will get him but is planning to up the ante shortly.

>Should he?
>Yes. It’s not like they’ll be able to track you down with how tech-savvy Matt is
>Yes, but make sure Matt takes the necessary precautions
>No. This is a risky move
>write-in

>(2/2)
>>
>>4327806
>Yes, but make sure Matt takes the necessary precautions
>>
>>4327806
>Yes, but make sure Matt takes the necessary precautions
Spooky Eddie is watching
>>
>>4327806
Nice fake I almost went and looked for iBreakYourShins' twitter account
Also up the ante...how, exactly?
>>
>>4327945

Upping ante = posting increasingly derisive stuff and maybe a pic or two from [redacted] that Matt may or may not have on a USB he brought along...
>>
>>4327958
I mean I guess if y'all wanna watch the fish girl eat a FutureLabs goon.
I do
>[zalgo]do it[/zalgo]
>>
>>4327997

e̼̞̘e̤̥͚̥͚͠e̝̱͉͇m͈̯̻̪̗̭̪o̹̤͘ͅ.̯n̯̘̯̩̼e̼͓̭̹͕͜t̠̫͚͡ Zalgo text comes from here.
>>
>>4327997
>ZaLgO
~EL^ whylive
/'/ [n\.....?
/___}-\../
_____T
>>
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>>4327827
>>4327851
>>4327997

“You using a proxy?” Though you’re not as tech-savvy as Matt, you do know most of the necessary precautions one must take when trying to remain anonymous on the web, and, if he hasn’t already, reminding your brother of said precautions is a good idea as any, because you don’t know how far FutureLabs’ technological monopoly extends.

“Tor.” Matt simply says, eyes not moving from the computer and fingers typing out something else.

“What about the camera?” You make a pointed nod to the uncovered lens, and it’s easy to slap a bandaid right over it, while the microphone isn’t too big of a worry cause the computer Matt is using had been cheap enough that it didn’t come with one at all.

Now, Matt can really set to work, you think, and he continues posting much in the same fashion as he had.

FutureLabs lied and mutants died #FutureLabs #Konigsburg #mutants

Send in the feds already baka #FutureLabs #Konigsburg #mutantcrisis #FutureLabs

Swiggity swack, Atticus Charles is a hack #Konigsburg #mutantcrisis #FutureLabs

>tfw you’re a mutant in Konigsburg… #Konigsburg #FutureLabs

Each successive post is successively bolder in its derision of FutureLabs, and the last post would be downright hilarious if it wasn’t the harsh reality of the situation. Then Matt fishes a USB from his pocket, plugs it in to the dingy laptop, and opens it to a folder of unfamiliar photos taken in a very familiar underground place.

>(1/?)
>>
>>4328016

“Are these from the hard drive?” You ask dumbly, even though you already know the answer. There are even a few videos scattered in the mix, and you wonder what kind of content they hold.

“Mhmm… some of the experiments from those Epsilon Trials from the files. I didn’t even go through half of it yet, but it’s just… it’s just really freaking ugly.” You tilt your head in question. “Lots of seizures, lots of powers killing people, and a lot of mutants going crazy— going to post one photo and one video and see where that gets us.”

Could it have been any uglier than what you had seen yourself down there? Knowing FutureLabs, you have no doubt that it is.

Nonetheless, the photo that is posted is of fire— nothing but simply fire— and the picture is labelled Day 32, Subject #02. It’s innocuous enough that the average citizen of Konigsburg wouldn’t know what it was, but, if FutureLabs is watching, they definitely will.

Matt makes his next post a half-hour after the photo, which is a video from the same day and test subject, Blaze, and it’s exactly as Matt had told you— lots of epileptic fits and fire. Once posted, he goes back to his rapid-fire of pro-mutant, anti-FutureLabs meme-ing. Two minutes in, and you hear Matt stop typing.

“… the hell?” You hear Matt mumble, clicking more insistently. “My mouse…”

Without warning, your faces are sent awash in blue light as the screen glitches and flashes uncontrollably. All manner of ones and zeroes run down the screen helter-skelter for an indeterminate length of time, and the harsh light against the dark of the forest it has your eyes pulsating and your head throbing, until the laptop suddenly fades to black.

But the screen is still on.

>what do you do?
>DESTROY
>Wait. See if anything else happens.
>Book it.
>write-in

>(2/2)
>>
>>4328144
>DESTROY
They are onto us
>>
>>4328144
>write-in
Say to Matt:
"They're either about to send a message, or are tracking us. Should we destroy it?"
Wake up Bernard in case we need to get out fast
>>
>>4328144
>write-in
Go directly to Philip Huber. Forget the car, get it later. If they have our computer they've got any other devices on the same wifi or even operating under the same data tower which means our phones are compromised which means John is compromised which means he's a hostage. Bring the computer to show PH. It's time to get on the news.
>>
>>4328199
Even if the above isn't true right this very second it will be within minutes so best to get one step ahead.
>>
>>4328199

this ain’t the whole hive grigger
>>
>>4328199
calm down, this isn't anonymous
>>
>>4328250
>>4328205
It takes one interested and able person. How many of those does FutureLabs have?
>>
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>>4328274

you really want spoilers, don't you?
>>
>>4328287
I'm Jack Off Bauer and you're watching 24PUNKD
>>
>>4328154
>>4328171

"They're either about to send a message, or are tracking us.” You tell Matt, who’s regarding the computer as one might regard a ticking bomb. “Should we destroy it?"

“Give it a few seconds— if nothing happens, then we can destroy it and get back to the car.” He’s already heading towards where Bernard is still asleep. “I’m going to wake Bernard.”

You watch and wait for the device to do something other than glitch every once in a while, turning up the volume settings as high as they will go.

—thttt— thttttt... The computer hisses and statics, fizzles and pops violently, until the volume settings turn down on their own accord. …thtt—thtt—thhhhtttttt...

Stubborn as you are, you press repeatedly and as fast as possible, but it’s a fight against an unknown entity that seems to have a stronger hold over your computer than you do.

Throughout all of the button-pressing and the computer glitching, you manage to catch the words “proxy” and “cowards” intermixed with the line, “…like an old a͞b̶án͢d̷o̶n͢ed͜ ̛sh͠ell…”

A long, drawn-out glitch follows suit, and you think you could feel just the faintest hint of longing coming from those final words.

It comes to your attention that whoever’s on the other end of the line does not have any control over what their voice transmits to the other end of the line. By your foot, you spot Matt’s phone with a pair of headphones still attached, which he had left behind in his hurry.

You don’t even need to think on what to do, immediately plugging them into the computer to listen more closely to this hacker; because maybe— just maybe— you can catch something from all of this.

>(1/?)
>>
>>4328453

It’s more less like a conversation, and more like hearing someones drawn-out thought process, you think, as you proceed to listen to this hacker who seems to lack in the self-awareness department.

You hear impulse-words, like “find,” “locate,” “track—“ a confirmation that the person on the other end had indeed been trying to track you. Two voices constitute a single thought, linear and nonlinear amid the fizzling static, but you know that, somehow, they are the same voice from the same person.

And the voice becomes increasingly fast in its thought process, as the static smooths into what you think is the voice of a male, but there’s so much information at such a high speed that you’re left grasping for straws at whatever lines you can decipher.

The clearest thing you hear is the phrase, “…disqualified as a human being…” Briefly, you wonder if the hacker is talking about you guys, the mutants in general, or someone else entirely. It wouldn’t be too far-fetched for people who stay underground all day to develop some sort of mental illness; because, when you were a shut-in, the enclosed space definitely got to your head after a while, even if it was your own house.

If the hacker is capable of tracking external devices, then he’s too transfixed on his own words to be remotely aware of the fact that you’re listening.

“…look as if—as if I’m—“ More fizzling obscures what’s in the middle. “—and that will not be true…” In the way the hacker recites this line, it’s as if he’s spoken it to himself countless times before.

“… But it will be like an old abando͝͞nę͘͠d̕—“

“—old a̢b́͞andoned— “ The words repeat themselves like a broken record. Beneath your grasp, the computer’s heating up, and it’s nearly too hot for normal hands.

“—old a̢b́͞and̕o͝͞nę͘͠d̕ ̴͢͟ś̢͘h͝͡͞e̶̴͞l͟͝͠l̶͟—

It’s in that instant when the computer bursts into flames, and you throw it to the ground so as to not catch yourself on fire.

You stomp on that machine for good measure, until it’s nothing more than a pulverized mass of burnt plastic and electronic bits on the ground, and then you dispose of it in a less than legal manner.

The sheer strangeness of that has you reeling for some reason, because… just what the heck was that?

>(2/?)
>>
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>>4328525

Computer disposed of, there’s no time to lose; because in the off-chance that the FutureLabs-aligned hacker figured out where you were, you need to leave as soon as possible.

Hurriedly, the three of you shove everything you had brought into your backpacks, uncaring of what goes where. The targets, too, are knocked down, their remains thrown into the woods and indiscernible from the rest of the wood and sticks strewn upon the forest floor, and then you’re dashing back to the forest trail with Matt in your hold, while Bernard is following you with his teleports. In the dark, it’s impossible for the blonde to follow you at anything other than short distances, but you manage to make it speedily back to the car.

All too quickly, Bernard falls asleep once more, leaving you and Matt in silence as the highway lights pass before you, but you can’t go home right now, because John would suspect something if you returned home at such an odd hour and so soon after leaving; so you stop at one of the rest stops that are midway between Howler’s lake and Konigsburg and make yourselves comfortable, because that’s all you can do for now.

>As you’re sitting there, you have several things on your mind about that experience with the hacker; what stuck out to you the most?

>”The hacker was a freaking weirdo.” Tell it straight.
>The hacker’s mode of speaking— how unsettling was that?
>The hacker’s strange, cryptic words— what did he mean with those phrases of his?
>write-in
>>
>>4328287
Somebody has The All-Seeing Eyes of the Gods?
>>
>>4328554
>The hacker’s strange, cryptic words— what did he mean with those phrases of his?
>>
>>4328561

Huh... I thought those were good-looking electronic eyes.
OP needs to start watching some anime outside of JoJo.
>>
>>4328561
Ahhhhhhh. Eddie's mutant power?
>>4328565
Blood Blockade Battlefront is a pretty good anime

>>4328554
>The hacker’s strange, cryptic words— what did he mean with those phrases of his?
>>
>>4328554
>Lots of people speak strangely. It's much stranger that you could hear him at all. It's as if he couldn't c̸on̡tr̀o̡l it and the speech was an integral part of the hacking process.
Def could be Eddie.
>>
Well folks, this is the last reply of the night, and, as usual, I'll be back to count the votes tomorrow.

In the meantime, feel free to keep theorizing on why computerboi is such a weirdo.

updates: twitter.com/qmsiren
>>
>>4328554
>>write-in
>"I think the hacker's a mutant. That or some weird cyborg. There's no way anybody can do the things they did with just computers."

Cyborg Mutant forced to clean up the internet by Futurelabs, calling it now.
>>
>>4328580
>hacker is Eddie
>Eddie is a double agent
>knew we could take the bullet
>John already knows about us
>Eddie fried our computer
>to give us a head start
>thanks Eddie
>>
>>4328587
I have to agree. PH needs to know about this esp. if he's going to reveal his daughter's mutantness
>>
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>>4328562
>>4328568
>>4328575
>>4328587
>>4328903

“Hey Matt, did I tell you I was able to listen in on the hacker while you were waking up Bernard?” You start, turning to face him from the passenger seat. “Also, your headphones caught on fire... Sorry about that.”

“No big deal, Ellie.” He says. “But what were they saying?”

“Lots of weird stuff-- like really weird stuff.” At that, Matt raises a brow.

“What kind of weird are we talking? Alien-weird, B-level horror-movie weird, or mutant-weird?”

“Well… I think the hacker's a mutant. That or some weird cyborg. There's no way anybody can do the things they did with just computers." The way that hacker spoke with the double-voiced, too-rapid stream of words did not sound remotely normal— not at all— and the manner that the laptop had been taken over so quickly after Matt had made his post...

The more you think on it, the more obvious it becomes that there might be a mutant hacker working for FutureLabs, as your constant dealing with mutants has given you a keen sense on where there may or may not be a power at play.

“A mutant working for FutureLabs…” Matt speaks aloud, breaking you out of your own thoughts. “It’s not unlikely that Atticus Charles could have taken some of the mutants with useful powers like that and used them for his benefit.” That would make sense, because you don’t think that any self-respecting mutant would choose to comply with FutureLabs of their own volition. However, with the right kind of threat looming over one’s head— such as imprisonment, experimentation, or anything else of the like— anything is possible.

In any case, a hacker mutant capable of overtaking computer within seconds is a pretty dangerous thing to have on the enemy side, and you wonder what the extent of the hacker-mutant’s powers are.

“We should warn Huber of this in case the mutant tries something when he comes out to the press about his daughter.” Because a mutant hacker getting in the way of things would be a critical blow against the endeavor to gain acceptance for mutants.

Matt nods, and you resolve to give Huber a call as soon as it’s daytime. “Anyways, what was that mutant saying?”

“Weird, cryptic, repetitive stuff.” You tell him. “A lot of it was nonsense, and I think a lot of it was just his thoughts coming through from his end of the connection.”

“So a mental hacker then?” Matt surmises.

“Yeah.” You affirm. “Anyways, does the phrase ‘but it will be like an old abandoned shell’ mean anything to you?” For whatever reason or another, the hacker seemed to be really fixated on that line.

>(1/?)
>>
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>>4329662

“But it will be like an old abandoned shell…” Matt repeats, placing a hand to his chin as he deliberates on what that phrase could possibly mean. “Honestly, I got nothing for that.” Even though the chances were slim of the line having any actual meaning outside of the hacker’s own mind, you can’t help the small wave of disappointment that you feel.

“I think the hacker’s out of his mind, Ellie.” Your brother says, and he leaves it at that, because what other explanation could there be for such an odd, meaningless phrase?

There had also been the line “…disqualified as a human being…” which is pretty self-evident, and you think the mutant could have been referring to either you guys… or possibly even himself. It would be more disturbing to you if it were the latter but not unlikely, considering how far FutureLabs goes to convince its workers that mutants are no longer human.

Reclining in your seat and closing your eyes, sleep does not come easy; and you’re not quite sure when exactly when you fell asleep, but, when you open your eyes, the sun is over the horizon and the car is moving once more.

Even though your trip was crashed by the hacker-mutant, you don’t think the trip was a total loss; you got to see the Howler's Lake again, you tested out your agility (which you definitely will continue to hone on your own when back in the city), and you learned that there are consequences for too much shitposting on the web— no thanks to the hacker-mutant.

>(2/?)
>>
>>4329700

You left your burner phone in the house, so you have to wait until you’re actually back in your neighborhood to retrieve it. Quick as a phantom, Bernard teleports to your room to retrieve it, as the three of you plan to make your return home “official” sometime in the afternoon so the three of you don’t seem suspicious.

“Phillip Huber speaking.” Huber’s voice greets from the other end of the line.

“Hello, Mr. Huber. This is... those people you talked with not too long ago.”

“You don’t need to tell me who you are— in fact, I’m pretty sure I know who it is I’m speaking to.” Though his tone is formal, there is a hint of mirth in his voice.

>what do you say?
>Explain to him the problem (in a roundabout way, of course) and ask if he has any backup plans
>Explain the problem and ask when the conference will be held
>Explain to him the problem and tell him you plan for the source of your potential interference
>write-in

>(3/3)
>>
>>4329800

Typo on option 3:

>Explain to him the problem and tell him you plan to attempt to seek out source of your potential interference despite not knowing how
>>
>>4329800
>Explain to him the problem (in a roundabout way, of course) and ask if he has any backup plans
>>
>>4329800
>>Explain to him the problem (in a roundabout way, of course) and ask if he has any backup plans
>>
>>4329700
>>
>>4330149

>inb4 eddie’s being blackmailed
>>
>>4329800
What is the maximum range of Bernard's teleport? It seems to run on Time Freeze rules (more distance feels like walking further, transporting other people feels like carrying them) so is it kinda like a Walking Distance thing, just in terms of energy use?
>>
>>4330406

>>4330406

>Time Freeze

Your OP lacks the knowledge of this but google shows me that it's some dragon ball stuff that flies over my head cause I've never seen the series.

>Is this walking distance or energy use?

Energy use definitely; the more mass he has to transport, the quicker his energy stores are depleted.

>What's Bernard's range

Bernard's range is actually pretty far on his lonesome (Somewhere between 100 km and 80 miles maximum at full energy), but we've seen him teleport the whole M-Guard from a rest stop back to Elise's house after having fought beforehand, which is probably a good 20-30 miles. Bernard will never get to Jumper levels though. That's too freaking overpowered.

Of course, if he never used his power or exercised it with so many people in tow, then the power itself would never grow this far, staying at maybe a solid 60 km maximum before he goes kaput.

I should warn you that OP has a pretty shitty distance gauge-- also I've happened to consume some very fine prosecco in the past short while so don't trust my judgement atm.

And a lot of the powers in this quest are like muscles: exercise them and they will get stronger (like in Elise's and Bernard's cases), or don't push their limits and remain at same general power level (Conduit and [redacted]).

Hopefully, this was a good explanation. I had such a good one for Bernard's power in my head that I was going to put in a pastebin. reeeeeeeee

Also OP is having slight delay w/ update. Not because of sweet, grapey deliciousness but cause pic related. I made a fren.
>>
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>>4329828
>>4330099

“We are calling to let you know that one of your competitors has a means of interference through the Internet, and we were concerned that it could hinder any future plans for business.” That’s as unspecific as you can be about this very specific problem, but, keen as Huber is, you’re sure hope he’ll get the gist of what you’re saying. “Do you have any backup plans in case?”

“That is rather unexpected, and I’m glad you notified me about this in advance.” You’re pretty sure he knows what you mean, though maybe not about a hacker-mutant specifically. “What about satellites and antennas? Those don’t require Internet do they?”

They don’t, but you still don’t know how exactly the hacker-mutant’s power words and whether or not it could extend through those too.

“In any case, I do happen to have a plan regardless of how I will be broadcasted onto the television.”

“What would that be?” Because you’re curious as to what the business tycoon could have up his sleeve.

“Well, to be frank with you, I have something else that I’d been using so I could actually arrange this thing— something related to the business itself, so I should have a set date by the end of the week.” Meaning that you should be keeping your burner phones on you for the foreseeable future.

“We definitely will.”

The conversation is ended not soon after, and, with the matter of probable hacker-interference somewhat taken care of, you have a couple of hours to kill.

>What do?
>Coffee; Valjean might be a dick, but the coffee shop’s still your favorite hangout
>go back home LIKE MEN and get some more stuff done
>Check the news on your phone. See how Konigsburg is faring at the moment.
>fry in the sun
>write-in

For the go home option, what would you like to prioritize in terms of getting something done?
>Take a look at some of that hard drive data you got, even though it's not finished yet
>Begin formation of a plan for breaking into the news station
>Check the web at home anyways, where it's air-conditioned and comfy
>See if Matt has any info yet on this "Eddie Braun" who may or may not be on the task force
>write-in
>>
>>4330490
>Check the news on your phone. See how Konigsburg is faring at the moment.
>>
Forgot to mention that this is the last reply of the night. OP may or may not be imbibed.

Also curious if anyone has a favorite side-character (BESIDES CLYDE)? Pic related.


updates: twitter.com/qmsiren
>>
>>4330582
well, appearence wise I liked Circuit, but in terms of how they are in the story I gotta admit that sopor caught my attention in that aspect
>>
>>4330448
>pic related
I almost made a bird friend yestoday. Good luck, little parakeet. It'll probably starve but I put a bit of food outside. Say hi to the snake for me.
>the rest
Thanks, helpfully. Paste anyway?
>>4330490
>Check the nooze
Modern business mogul in banking is surprised by hax, more at 11.
>>4330582
URSULA lol the only true villain. Forced romance *and* torturing mutants for *science*? More like Yumdere.
>>
>>4331069
Not even for like self interested science, just because someone in science t o l d her to. Astonishing. At least Clyde enjoys himself.
>>
>>4331069
>>4331074

>Yumdere

Kabe don intensifies. Oh wait. She can't!!! Cause-- we broke her arm!!! GET IT?!

I'm a terrible person.
>>
>>4330507
>>4331069

There’s no better way to mindlessly kill time than on your cell phone, and, biased as they are, you have apps for several Konigsburg-based news outlets such as The Daily Kaiser, The Konigsburg Times, and Notre Ville Maintenant, along with a couple of world news apps like Polit-IC and The Launching Stone.

Randomly selecting one of the apps from your news folder, you take your time to scroll through the headlines: New Restaurant Opens in Mieszko, Old Town Square Restoration to Proceed into the Fall, KIT Alumni Celebrate Graduation of Senior Students. However, nothing really catches your eye, so you click on the mutant tag to see if there might be anything notable. Of course, there won’t be and you know it—there will probably just be the same sensationalist crap that they feed to the masses on a regular basis— but what else do you have to do right now?

Anything remotely related to mutants is still heavily biased against mutants in general— that hasn’t changed one bit. There’s an article from one of the mutants you saved some several days ago: M-Guard Interferes in Eight-Hour Standoff between Mutant Senior and Police; and it wasn’t really that much of a standoff, because the man’s power happened to be intangibility, so he had just been sitting in his place while the police waited for him to exhaust himself.

The whole thing was actually pretty funny, since the old man didn’t seem to be tiring out any time soon and the agents seemed just about ready to lose their minds with how that mutant had been talking non-stop before you showed up and even while you had been whisking him to safety.

Come to think of it, you haven’t seen that many old people mutants, the majority of the ones you save ranging anywhere between small children and young adults. Perhaps there’s a correlation between mutants and age, but, as much as you want to ask your older brother-slash-FutureLabs employee, your identity is more important than the endless slew of mutant-related questions you have.

>(1/2)
>>
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>>4331604

Mutant here, mutant there, you guys resisting the law— you’re pretty sure someone copy pasted the same article from a few weeks ago and changed the date on it— and you wonder how this constitutes journalism.

Possible Lead on Kastan General Hospital Bombing Perpetrator— Even better, you think, because you’ve seen a million of these articles in the months since Pharos’ final stint at the hospital, and you internally groan, because it’s more than likely that the article is just clickbait. Stupid freaking clickbait that you’ve been dumb enough to click for the past million times, because sometimes you’re just that easy.

>Check it out. Fall for the obvious clickbait.
>Don’t. Screw this clickbait.
>>
>>4331615
>Check it out. Fall for the obvious clickbait.
I mean we got nothing to lose anyway and it may be right this time
>>
>>4331615

danger danger for double V
>>
>>4331655

>>4315636 <—
>>
>>4331641
+1 just click we're already mostly in the rabbit hole anyway.
>>4331604
If I were a middle aged mutant, I'd probably prefer to hide my powers. Also
>standoff
>mutant senior
"GET ON THE GROUND"
"But I won't be able to get back up"
>>
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>>4331641
>>4331655
>>4331661
>>4331948

Your impulse control seems to be quite lacking, moreso than usual, and that’s how you find yourself instantly tapping at the headline that may or may not be clickbait.

First you’re skimming through it, because you’re still under the assumption that it’s still clickbait. However, this time, you’re very much surprised that there is some actual information as to where Pharos had been hiding for the past long while— he’d been hiding in Ville de Rien, which would happen to be one of the most run-down, crime-ridden areas of Konigsburg.

And what better place for a criminal to hide than among more crime?

Nonetheless, the authorities have yet to put a face to the red-ringed mask, the most they found being that Pharos had been renting out his apartment under the fake name ‘Hugo Gavroche.’ The rest of the article just happens to provide another recounting on what had happened during the at the hospital before giving out the number to the MutantWatch hotline.

“The police have a lead on Pharos.” You say aloud to Matt and Bernard who are both nearby. Twin expressions of disbelief are evident on their faces, because none of you thought that Pharos would ever be found again.

“Sauce Ellie.” Matt recovers from his surprise quickly enough, and you text him and Bernard the link to the article. A few minutes pass where you let them read the article in silence and let it sink in that the chief cause of mutant-induced mutant-insanity is still out there.

“Oh shit you weren’t lyin,’ fishface.” Is what Bernard says right after he puts down his phone. “He won’t stand a chance against the cops— only reason that he even got out of the warehouse that one time is cause I was there to bail him out.” This is true, because Pharos’ power is good for nothing other than the manipulation of crowds, so there’s little that the Crux leader could possibly have up his sleeve to go against Konigsburg’s entire police force.

And this new information leaves you feeling conflicted; because, on one hand, you think that Pharos should pay for everything that he’s done, especially for all of the suffering he’s caused to both mutants and non-mutants alike, but since he’s still subject to the Mutant Terror Act, the only cell he’d be taken to is one within the recesses of FutureLabs.

It’s been long enough that the idea of seeing Pharos again is pretty surreal, and, while saving him is the moral thing to do due to FutureLabs penchant for human experimentation and murder, there is a danger to publicly affiliating yourselves with Pharos. However, if you manage to catch Pharos, you will be in possession of the only mutant who is capable of undoing that vocal spell that has been cast upon the other mutants.
>>
>>4332287

>”I think we should save Pharos, regardless of the consequences. If FutureLabs doesn’t care about the consequences of their actions, then neither should we.”
>”If we’re going to save Pharos, when the time comes, we need to make sure that we’re not mistaken for his followers.”
>”We need to catch Pharos so we can fix the minds of the Crux members. Even though he probably won’t do it, if we just get him to admit his power, we can break them from his spell.”
>”I think we should skip out on saving Pharos. He’s caused enough death that he shouldn’t be on the streets any longer.”
>Write-in
>>
>>4332290
>”If we’re going to save Pharos, when the time comes, we need to make sure that we’re not mistaken for his followers.”
>>
>>4332290
>”I think we should save Pharos, because it's the right thing to do. He should face prison time for his crimes, not human experimentation in the depths of FutureLabs.”

and also
>>
>>4332290

>”We need to catch Pharos so we can fix the minds of the Crux members. Even though he probably won’t do it, if we just get him to admit his power, we can break them from his spell.

Also giving FutureLabs a mind control mutant is not a good idea
>>
>>4332290
If we're feeling unscrupulous we could use Pharos to Correct Atticus Charles' opinion regarding mutants.
>"Finding and possibly capturing Pharos before the police do isn't about saving Pharos. Pharos going to jail is the best thing that could happen to someone with the power to control minds with their speech and an itch to use it to make himself a dictator. We *know* that exactly four people are immune to his ability, us three and [the telepath (Conduit?)], and that makes the M-Guard literally the only people who have a chance of stopping Pharos from making his dream into everyone else's nightmare."
>>
>>4332382
And that's making some assumptions about Conduit and the nature of Pharos' weakness. If he goes to jail, he gets out in a week with an army.
>>
>>4332385

Mutant CHAZ anyone?
It would be called Konigsburg Autonomous Radically Emancipated Nation
>>
>>4332385
I'm really struggling to find a way we can avoid needing to kill him, a way his ability can be used for anything but evil. The world has mutants now and eventually his ability is going to crop up again. If we set the precedent of killing him, Atticus Charles is right, and it's off to the gas chambers with US.
>We should at least find out who Pharos is.
>>
>>4332409
I'm separating in my head the person from the moniker. "Pharos" is a bad guy. The person wearing the Pharos mask is as different from Pharos as Kelpie is from Piranha.
>>
>>4332409
FUCK KAREN
>>
>Pharos’ power is good for nothing other than the manipulation of crowds
Let's assume this is true. It doesn't make Pharos evil. If he just wanted an army he wouldn't need to make it just mutants, which means that the Crux was a self-defense type response to the anticipated threat of FutureLabs.
We *could* use him to stop a person in the immediate act of doing something that would harm themselves or others, that's easy. Can we use him to stop Atticus Charles from wanting to hurt mutants without proving Atticus Charles' point?
>>
>>4332548

>It doesn't make Pharos evil. If he just wanted an army he wouldn't need to make it just mutants

It's pretty visible throughout the threads, but ourboi thinks that mutants are on a higher level than nonmutants. When FutureLabs became a visible threat to his cause, that's when he started acting against them.

Also don't feel like combing threads #01 and #02, but I'm pretty sure there was some Crux crime against science people somewhere.


>We *could* use him to stop a person in the immediate act of doing something that would harm themselves or others, that's easy. Can we use him to stop Atticus Charles from wanting to hurt mutants without proving Atticus Charles' point?

Assuming he doesn't have a really beefy security system. And really beefy security Chads on his property AT ALL TIMES!!!!

>Pharos’ power is good for nothing other than the manipulation of crowds

This is Elise's half-cobbled assumption of what Pharos' power is.
>>
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OP wants to quest moar but sleep is calling my name, so see you kings next time!

In which Pharos will start the KAREN, beg the outsiders for food resources, and demand to speak to the manager

updates: twitter.com/qmsiren
>>
>>4332576
>clearly mutant supremacist
Well so far he's in it for personal aggrandizement and I don't see that trend going away even if he releases the mutants from being extensions of his ego with literal targets strapped to their foreheads.
>security chads
Look at my scaley knees shaking. Using nonmutants as cannon fodder would go a long way towards establishing him as an actual mutant supremacist and not merely an ineffectual douchebag suddenly granted a way out of needing to make himself valuable to be given positive attention. Apparently tickling yourself is possible.
>>
>>4332684
I don't think he *knows* he's in it for personal aggrandizement.
>>
>>4332290
>>”We need to catch Pharos so we can fix the minds of the Crux members. Even though he probably won’t do it, if we just get him to admit his power, we can break them from his spell.”

I'm not keen on using Pharos for anything but undoing his damage. He should go to jail or whatever analogue can be cooked up for mutants afterwards.
>>
Going to lay down a theory
>Pharos gets defeated
>Pharos is salty af
>Pharos is on the run and can’t get more mutants
>best thing he can get is restaurant job as wanted terrorist
>gets even more salty cause old escape route and person who defeated Crux are kicking ass
>ego takes large hit
>somewhere along the way finds out new power trick
>uses it to rebrand self as sopor to go after police
> will try to capitalize off of mutant shit if/when he realizes what M guard is doing
>>
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>>4333541
>>4332736
>>4332382
>>4332371
>>4332315
>>4332299

“Finding and possibly capturing Pharos before the police do isn't about saving Pharos. Pharos going to jail is the best thing that could happen to someone with the power to control minds could get. If FutureLabs gets him, he’ll probably be be out of there in a week with a new Crux.” By far, it would be a bigger and badder Crux than the last one, and this time around the mutants would actually have a reason to actively attack the rest of the citizens. “We’re also the only ones who are immune to his ability, so, if there’s any chance at stopping him before that happens, it has to be with us.”

You also feel that capturing Pharos is indeed the right thing to do until he can be legally dealt with. If anything, he needs to face prison time for his crimes, not human experimentation in the depths of FutureLabs, but that need not be said.

“We also need to make sure that we’re not mistaken for his followers when the time comes to capture him.” You address one of your other concerns, which is a valid one in your case.

“Your powers are pretty distinctive, and so are the suits.” Matt points out, and he’s quiet for a moment, until he says. “I think I just figured out something worse than having our identities busted: being eternal fugitives.”

“We can wear something else— it’s not a big deal— and I can use most of my powers without shifting.” You can use your strength, speed, and most of your senses, even without your fish-form, but how will you hide your face better than with the usual face-mask you wear? You’re screwed if that falls off in the middle of a fight.

There must be some sort of compromise for this sort of problem. Can there even be a compromise with how utterly different your two faces are from each other, like some sort of midway point—

Wait a second…

Like a lightbulb, a very viable idea comes to mind. “I can do a half-shift!

Countless times, you’ve watched yourself shift in the mirror, and, because your nose hadn’t completely reshaped itself, there is a point midway between your fish form and your human form where your face looks more like some sort of reptile rather than any aquatic animal.

“Ellie, did I ever tell you how much that face kills me inside?” Matt, who sees you shift on a constant basis, already knows where this is going. “You look just like a freaking lizard man, but that’s one problem solved.” You’re positive that Matt low-key believes in lizard men. “It’s Bernard that’s the problem.”

“Wait what did I do?” Confusion is written on the teleporter’s features.

“If they see the teleport, they’re going to know it’s us instantly. Then we’re screwed.”

“Well, what about you, stickface? Your bat is also a dead giveaway.” Or any blunt-force object for that matter.

>(1/?)
>>
>>4333650
Pharos looking more handsome in that pic
>>
>>4333741

First Pharos drawing since thread one!! YEET!!!

Not to toot my own horn, I do have to say I've gotten better since than.
>>
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>>4333650

“You could use your slingshot.” You remember the slingshot Matt had been carrying with him last night.

“Since when do you use a slingshot?” The question is Bernard’s.

“Since we went to the mall and I bought it.” Matt simply says. “Never hurts to expand your horizons every once in a while…” Implying that he’s been practicing with it for longer than just the night before. “I still don’t know how much damage we can do on the agents with it, even if I’m using either steel or lead.”

You’ll make Matt test it for you at a later time, since you’re curious to know just what he can do with it, and, although a slingshot holds no candle to a gun, it’s still better than nothing. There’s also the fact that you’re in a city, and your city has no shortage of rusty metal pipes and whatever other objects lying around; so, even without his bat, Matt will never truly be unarmed.

“What about me?” Bernard asks pointedly. “I don’t wanna sit out of this one, and I won’t.”

“Hate to break it to you, B, but you might just have to this time.” A noise of protest from the blonde. “You’ll stay with me on the sidelines helping with recon, and we’ll meet with Ellie when she’s retrieved Pharos and get out of there.” That seems to placate Bernard, but he still looks adamant about not being able to fight with you. “You’re a good fistfighter, but we can’t have either of us getting caught.”

Not when there’s so much else at stake.

You just need to get a hold of Pharos long enough to figure out how you can make him repair the damage he’d cast upon the other mutants and get him into a non-FutureLabs prison cell. Absently, you wonder what will be done with all of the mutants that had committed crimes for the Crux once you take down FutureLabs. Will the government make some sort of special prison for them? Will their crimes be treated the same way as any other citizen because of their mutant nature? And can you even trust the government to hold the mutants ethically?

The feds had been skeptical of the whole Konigsburg situation and of FutureLabs in general, but who’s to say that their own scientific curiosity won’t win out in the end?

FutureLabs is one thing, but trying to go against a whole government body would be a never-ending battle for you.

But that’s a worst-case scenario, and you hope it will not come to that.

>(2/?)
>>
>>4333770
Probably aughto keep B-Boi on speed dial just in case.
We're in for a tough time when we find out Pharos is just as dangerous inside a regular prison as he is with FutureLabs.
>>
>>4333770

“Hey guys— how was the lake?” Is John’s greeting from the couch when the three of you walk through the door after you think you’ve spent enough time outside of the house, a book in his hold.

“It was great, Mr. Martins— I mean, Mr. John…” Bernard stumbles over his words. “I mean, it was excellent!”

“Did you get to hike?”

“Yeah.” Bernard nods. “Ellie even taught me how to make a campfire.” A total lie, but it sounds good aloud.

“Good.” John smiles. “Next time, I’ll have to come with you guys, teach you guys how to hunt. There’s a really good hunting trail if you cross off from the main path, and I’ll show you where it is when we go.” The last time John had hunted had been with your dad a couple of years before he started college; though he hasn’t expressed interest for that kind of stuff in a while, you think that his recent gun usage has reignited something within him.

“Sounds great.” Bernard’s tone is genuine. “Matt and I are going to play some video games now.” He makes a gesture to him. “Come on.”

While the two of them head to their room, you head to yours to attempt that half-shifting of your features. Being neither comfortable nor uncomfortable, the act of a half-shift feels like you’re trying to hold a weird face.

You also call for your claws and your fins, concentrating on holding the other aspects of your transformation back. Your nails sharpen, and there’s the extra weight of your fins on your arms, and, the longer you look in the mirror, the more you realize Matt was right— you really do look like a lizard person.

Aside from the color of your scales, your half-shifted face doesn’t look like your fish-form’s face or your normal face, and you’ll have to do something like put up your hair so that FutureLabs won’t make the connection; but you think that this might actually work.

Of course the first thing you do after testing it out is show what you have deemed your “lizard-face” to Matt and Bernard. Bernard seems is fascinated by your lizard-like face, while Matt pulls an odd expression as thoughts of lizard men dance through his head.

In any case, the three of you spend the rest of the afternoon continuing what you have been doing for the past long while; you and Bernard have nearly finished compiling the video for your part of the evidence, while Matt still has some ways to go before he’s through with the hard drive.

>What now?
>Continue training— hone your agility skills so you can be ready for boogaloo and have Matt test out that slingshot for you
>Begin brainstorming on how you will break into a news station
>See what kind of stuff Matt has accumulated from the hard drive
>Talk to John; he’s probably bored as heck on his lonesome— spend some time with your big bro
>See if Matt has gotten a hold of John’s personal address book for your cross-referencing of Eddie Braun
>write-in

>(3/3)
>>
>>4333818

>Talk to John; he’s probably bored as heck on his lonesome— spend some time with your big bro

Maybe he'll let futurelabs info slip
>>
>>4333830
>÷1
I wonder if we ought to drop some hints about the M-Guard.
>>
>>4333818
>Talk to John; he’s probably bored as heck on his lonesome— spend some time with your big bro
Lizard form it's not even cute like fish form
>>
>>4333855
nah I'm sure he figured it out two threads ago
>>
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>>4333859
>Lizard form it's not even cute like fish form

Well at least Elise has some prospects for work in govt or presidency— maybe even for stealing an entire social media network...
>>
>>4333880
>>4333880

Meant to put spoiler around the whole text
>>
>>4333878
If he did, he'll either drop some hints of his own or avoid the conversation entirely. The important thing is to corner your family and beat them until they sing.
>>
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>>4333880
>Well at least Elise has some prospects for work in govt or presidency— maybe even for stealing an entire social media network...
Mutant!Shadow Government Quest sequel confirmed ?
>>
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>>4333909

LET'S DEFEAT FUTURELABS FIRST! AND THEN WORRY ABOUT OPPORTUNISTIC GOVERNMENT WHORES!!
>>
>>4333943

the shitposting opportunity was way too good...
>>
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>>4333909
>>4333943
Boruto sucks
>>
>>4333961

boruto who? That's the original Nick Fury.
>>
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>>4333965
I googled Solid Snoke. Disney has me fully cucked.
>>
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>>4333830
>>4333859
>>4333859

You decide to go see what John’s up to, because compiling video is long and monotonous business. Plus, since you’ve started your work on putting the evidence together, your interactions with John have been few and far between.

“Hey John.” You start with your most eloquent conversation-starter, and your eyes are drawn to the small book in his hands. “What book are you reading?”

“Oh…” He runs a hand through his hair, looking slightly embarrassed of himself. “It’s one I used to read it to you and Matt when you were kids.”

You had a lot of books that John read to you as a kid, so it could be any one of them. Plus his fingers are covering most of the title. “Which one?”

“The Little Prince.” John takes a moment to answer the question. You remember John having read the story countless times, the memory of those times stirring up something within you that you can’t quite put a name, and, upon closer inspection of the book, you can tell that the pages are tattered and worn. “I mean, I know it’s not my usual reading material, but I just kind of stumbled upon it when I was cleaning up a bit and thought it would be a good way for me to pass the afternoon.”

“It’s a good book.” You say, because it’s simple as that. “What part are you on?” As you ask, you take a seat on the adjacent couch cushion.

“Second to last.” Is John’s answer. “Did you know that the Prince basically kills himself in the end?" That’s… oddly disturbing for a children’s story, and you’d completely forgotten that part. "Well, that’s not what he was trying to do in the story's context, but, if you let yourself get bitten by a snake on purpose, then what else are you doing?” You shrug at the rhetorical question.

Still, when you have the chance, you’ll definitely read it again.

>While you're here, what else can you say to John?
>”What other books did you find?”
>”How have you been passing the time lately?”
>”Have you heard about anything from work?”
>write-in
>>
>>4334027
>”How have you been passing the time lately?”
>>
>>4334027
>"Have you been okay? I don't want you to feel lonely just because me and Matt are out doing teen stuff."
If Sopor is Pharos I can see returning to the Crux hideout as a suicide by cop. Poor kid.
>>
>>4334027
>”How have you been passing the time lately?”
>”Have you heard about anything from work?”
>>
>>4334027
>>4334092
>>
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>>4334047
>>4334092
>>4334209
>>4334359

“How have you been passing the time lately?” Because John happens to have all the free time in the world lately, you wonder how he’s choosing to spend it.

“Besides cleaning and cooking?” John smiles a wry smile, his fingers place in-between the pages of the book where he’d left off. “I’ve been going to one of the nearby gyms to exercise, but there’s not much else I’ve been doing.” Although there is a gym at FutureLabs that likely has the most state-of-the-art everything, you think that John is in no rush to get back there.

“Have you been okay? I don’t want you to feel lonely cause Matt and I are out all the time.” You honestly mean what you say, because outside of you and Matt there’s nobody else that your older brother really has.

“No, Elise, it’s fine.” John waves you off. “You guys are kids— you should be enjoying yourselves as long as you can— cause Matt’s going to start college next year, you’ll go into your second year, and won’t Bernard too?” Bernard might not be a college student, but John does have a good point.
“What about work? Have you heard anything from them?” There’s a slumping of John’s shoulders at the question. “Well, I don’t think I’ll be going back to tech work anytime soon...” He says. “I’m going to be doing some work as a field agent.”

“A field agent.” You repeat, knowing what this already entails.

“It’s nothing big. Just a lot more footwork on my end, and I might have to start going in for additional training once or twice a week.” There’s the gunning part too, but you don’t think John would want to divulge that particular bit of information to you. “If I didn’t, I’d have to stop tech altogether, cause they were going to make me change to a Level E Personnel.” There’s something strange written on his face as he mentions that last part, and, with your senses, you hear his heart rate picking up ever-so-slightly.

>”What’s a Level E personnel? What do they do?” You heard this being mentioned when John was on the beach.
>”Why are they making you change divisions in the first place?” You pretty much know already but you want to hear it from the source.
>”You don’t seem too thrilled about becoming a field agent...” It’s clear on his features right now.
>write-in
>>
>>4334394
>”What’s a Level E personnel? What do they do?” You heard this being mentioned when John was on the beach.
>>
Forgot to mention that this was the last reply of the night! See you kings next time!

updates: twitter.com/qmsiren
>>
>>4334472

post id changed cause net failed to work; net is fixed now.
>>
>>4334394
>>”What’s a Level E personnel? What do they do?” You heard this being mentioned when John was on the beach.
>>”Why are they making you change divisions in the first place?” You pretty much know already but you want to hear it from the source.
>>”You don’t seem too thrilled about becoming a field agent...” It’s clear on his features right now.
Can we do all of them?
>>
>>4334472
G̴̴͎͖̤̜̥͚̬̜̭̖͔̞̦͇͇̗̹̙̝̀͞Y̵̨̢̡̹͙̰̖͔̙͔̯̗̙̳͖͔̼̱̞ͅḾ̸̜͖̺̭̹͓̪͔̯̙̰͈̤̮͕͎͚̖̀S̷̡̡̨̼̘̖̭̭̻̰͖̱̳͉̜̘̠̣̗̮̀ͅͅ there's the hint John's a mutant confirmed
>>
>>4334394
>”Why are they making you change divisions in the first place?” You pretty much know already but you want to hear it from the source.
>>
>>4334394
I wonder how Atticus Charles feels about having oopsed his facility into a mutant concentration camp.
>>
>>4334394

>”What’s a Level E personnel? What do they do?” You heard this being mentioned when John was on the beach.
>>
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>>4334421
LEP
>>
>>4334841
>>
>>4334841

Why would John still walk free if that were the case?
>>
>>4335006
If there's anything the workaday adult is good at, it's pretending their talents never existed so that their boss doesn't fire them.
>>
>>4335020
why would you get fired for being talented
>>
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>>4335056
Or the talent gets co-opted into the boss's pet project.
>>
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>>4334421
>>4334585
>>4334914

Level E Personnel: you heard John talking about that when he was on the beach with Edmund and Clyde. You know that it’s a demotion— one that isn’t good; but you would like to know just what FutureLabs might be hanging over your older brother’s head.

“What’s a Level E Personnel? What do they do?” The questions are fired off one after another, and, other then a pursing of the lips and something else beyond the glasses that you can’t quite decipher, your rampant inquiries don’t seem to bother John too much.

“Level E Personnel are the guys who help handle the test subjects. They’re about as hands-on as you can get if you’re not a researcher.” John says, face not betraying his emotions or his heartbeat. “Since I have you guys with me, being a Level E Personnel is the last thing I’d ever want to be, cause I’ve seen what the Level E Personnel do, and a lot of them have gotten hurt pretty badly.

With John’s penchant for euphemisms and FutureLabs’ extensive track record for murder, “hurt pretty badly” could mean anything from serious injury to death. But normal people too? What reason would they even have to put normal people in jeopardy like that is, unless they don’t have enough people who are volunteering themselves to help handle the mutants with the more volatile powers. You read the documents from the Epsilon Trials, and a lot of staff did end up dying on multiple occasions.

You would understand if it were mutants being staffed as the Level E Personnel or even just normal, terrible employees, but an honest, all-around good-guy like John?

“It’s kind of my fault for messing up something at work that they wanted to reposition me…” Your older brother’s voice tears you from your thoughts. “…but there’s nothing I can really do about it now…”

Shit. You are once again reminded of your mistake that hadn’t quite registered with you when you were eavesdropping on the beach. If you had known that stupid gas code would have gotten John in this kind of position, you would have never thought of using it in the first place. Guilt washes over you, and your face must be an open book, because John immediately notices.

“Elise.” There is a hand on your shoulder, terribly calm in spite of everything. “They’re not going to make me do anything I don’t want to do.”

>(1/?)
>>
>>4335356
Why can't he just quit if things get too bad again?
>>
>>4335372

He's under legal contract my grigga. 2 years left working for Adolfticcus Charles
>>
Pretty sure that was mentioned in the end of thread #04
>>
>>4335379
>>4335385
ooof damn yea forgot

what happens if he just refuses to perform a task? like if they tell him go torture some mutants and he's just like nah, deskwork only sorry.
>>
>>4335379
That's a weird fuckin contract. He can't just not show up? What are they gonna do, retroactively dock his pay? Does he just get paid once at the end of the contract? I get that it's a well-paid job but...
>>
>>4335399

There's a reason why glasses-bro sticks to the most menial and vanilla tasks FutureLabs has to offer, like prepping stuff, cleaning beakers, and working equations.

Plus they have shitloads of people who will do the chop-chop-chopping ara ara.


>>4335413
IT'S THE MOST SECURE LAB ON THE EASTERN SEABOARD THAT'S PRIVATELY OWNED. CORPORATE ESPIONAGE IS A VERY VIABLE THREAT tee hee.
And John really doesn't need the pay-- the Martins are rich--it was the prestige of the job that got him.
>>
>>4335413

Nah it has normal pay. Normal weekly/bi-monthly pay periods with money by the hour.

IRL this is how bright-eyed, bushy-tailed graduates are lured into shit jobs. It's a thing.
>>
>>4335356
"John, I want you to quit Futurelabs."
>>
>>4335356

Total lie, you think. That’s a total lie, because they already are. He’s been more-or-less blackmailed into joining the task force that will try to place a bullet in you, and FutureLabs has him under legal contract for two more years.

“You’re a good kid, Elise. Don’t worry too much about me.” The smile on his face does not reach his eyes, and that guilt that had been present has multiplied tenfold. You feel like you want to vomit.

‘I’ll fight him.’ Faintly, you hear the sound of your own voice in your ear, a memory of a declaration you had made before Matt and Bernard. You keep your fingers interlocked, focus on keeping your features smooth and neutral, and hope that your body doesn’t betray you any more than it already has, as your stomach tries to make its way into your throat.

But you push it down— squash it like you were biting into live prey with your knife-like teeth— and, though the weight on your chest doesn’t completely go away, it abates just enough that you have a decent hold on yourself.

From what you had seen on the beach, it had been plainly clear that John had wanted nothing to do with the task force, and, when he had been placed on leave, you don’t think you had seen him so relieved in ages. Again, you recall that not only is he stuck working for FutureLabs for two more years, but he’s also legally bound not to talk about his job.

That’s probably the worst thing for John— that he has no one to share his problems with, while you can talk to Matt and Bernard about anything you want and they will listen.

You know that John likes talking about his problems as much as you do, if not even more so.

There are countless things that you’ve always wanted to ask John but didn’t think he would tell you, and right now, where your brother looks open to talking in this very moment, you could use this as an opportunity to both help John alleviate some of his own stress while also having something answered for yourself.

>”What do you think about this whole mutant business and mutants in general?”
>”What are they really going to make you do as a field agent?”
>”Are you sure you’re going to be alright?”
>”You don’t enjoy working for FutureLabs anymore, do you?”
>write-in
>>
>>4335451
>”What do you think about this whole mutant business and mutants in general?”
>>
>>4335451
>>”What do you think about this whole mutant business and mutants in general?”

>>”You don’t enjoy working for FutureLabs anymore, do you?”
>>
>>4335451
>”What do you think about this whole mutant business and mutants in general?”

>”You don’t enjoy working for FutureLabs anymore, do you?”
>>
>>4335451
I'll have some
>"You don't enjoy working for FutureLabs anymore, do you?"
With a side of
>write-in
>>"Please, don't brush me off."
With
>"Are you sure you're going to be alright?"
Sauce, two packets.
>>
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Slight delay in update. Enjoy this picture with no additional context.
>>
>>4335356

what if ther
>>
>>4336053

FREAKIN WUT ANON?! SPEAK TO ME?
>>
>>4335464
>>4335466
>>4335471
>>4335499

“What do you really think about this mutant business and mutants in general?” The question, seemingly out of nowhere, startles John, but he recovers quickly from his surprise, his features now thoughtful as he considers your question.

“Are we talking about the mutants outside or inside the labs?” Is the response you receive, and you shrug, because you don’t want to be the person who namedrops yourself to John.

“If we’re talking about the M-Guard here, they just look like a bunch of kids to me. A bunch of kids who are way in over their heads.” You resist the urge to squirm under John’s bespectacled gaze, that last sentence hitting way too close to home. At least he hadn’t said anything negative about you.

Still, it’s pretty freaking uncomfortable getting into a conversation about your alternate self as yourself, and, although John can be rather pig-headed at times, you think that he would have you figured out given enough time.

“What about the mutants inside the labs? Didn’t they say that they were rehabilitating them?” You ask the dumb question to throw him off anything M-Guard-related. “How is that going?”

“Genetics-wise, there really isn’t a way to rehabilitate them, because their genes are permanently altered by the particle-bound energy that their bodies resonated with, so there’s really no going back from becoming a mutant.” John easily explains. “In some cases, the explosion managed to help people whose bodies had chronic or underlying medical issues by fortifying a specific area of the body, and, in other cases, the mutants’ bodies took on more drastic changes to compensate for high amounts of stress or bodily damage.” Like you, you think, the thought entering your mind involuntarily.

“There’s not much I’m supposed to be talking to you guys about outside of work, but, in terms of what I really think…” He stops, not sure how to continue. “…I just don’t know what to make of anything anymore, because Doctor Charles wants us all do one thing, but my mind and logic are telling me something entirely different.” Then he adds. “I can’t wait until these two years are done.”

There’s a heavy silence that overtakes the room, that tattered copy of The Little Prince being all-but forgotten, and you and John are left sitting there against the couch.

>(1/?)
>>
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>>4336082

“You don’t enjoy working for FutureLabs anymore, do you?” You break the quiet by addressing the crux of the matter.

“What was your first guess?” Is John’s sardonic response, and, beneath his glasses, you can see the darkness beneath his eyes. “But you’re right. I’m not going to lie to you, Elise. Not about that anymore.” A pause as he gathers his thoughts. “Don’t get me wrong though—I used to like it back when we were doing good things and we were working on projects that actually benefitted people. Now I’m just kind of trying to wait out the rest of my time in tech, but I don’t even have that anymore…”

“…Pieces of shit…” Your head whips in John’s direction— so fast that you could’ve dislocated something had you been normal; you don’t think you’ve ever heard him ever use that kind of language. He must find something funny about your reaction though, because there’s now smirk upon his face. “Forget I ever said that, and don’t tell Matt either.” He jokes, but you refrain from telling him that Matt has the foulest mouth out of all of you.

“Elise.” John says, tone more stern now “All of this mutant and lab garbage isn’t anything you need to think about— you should keep your mind on other things, like your brother and your friend.” You realize that he’s trying to steer you away from the topics of conversation, but, stubborn as you are, you’ll have none of it.

“Please don’t brush me off I know there’s a lot you can’t tell us, but I’m not stupid. I can tell when something’s bothering you, and you don’t have to tell me what it is. I just want to make sure you’re alright.”

“I’ve survived thus far, haven’t I?” He’s smiling a wry, empty smile, and you can’t help but feel weak in the knees at the sight of his face like that. “I don’t know why you’re so worried about me.”

>”Because you’re my brother. That’s why.” Simple as that.
>”Because you’ve been there more for us than mom or dad ever were.” Emphasize John’s importance as your older brother.
>John doesn’t seem too keen on talking anymore. Leave it at that and go back to what you were doing before
>Comfort, because John doesn’t look like he wants to press the matter of himself anymore.
>write-in

Last reply of the day! OP's gonna cut off here. Would've made longer but OP is sleepy as usual.
updates: twitter.com/qmsiren
sɹǝƃƃıɹƃ ʎןןnɟǝɹɐɔ pɐǝɹʇ
>>
>>4336108
>Comfort, because John doesn’t look like he wants to press the matter of himself anymore.
Big huggies for bro
>>
>>4336108
>”Because you’re my brother. That’s why.” Simple as that.
>Comfort, because John doesn’t look like he wants to press the matter of himself anymore.
>>
>>4336108
>>”Because you’re my brother. That’s why.” Simple as that.

Duh.

>Hug.
>>
>>4336108
>Comfort, because John doesn’t look like he wants to press the matter of himself anymore.

conflicted about telling him we're M-Guard. He'd never want us put in a lab, we might get his help out of it. But it's a lot more likely that he'll insist we stop what we're doing.
>>
>>4336053
Pic related
>>
>>4336485

phone died as I was writing.
>>
>>4336656

but I was writing what if there using level E personell as an excuse to kill of FutureLabs guys who don’t fit the mold and that’s what they wanted to do to John?
>>
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>>4336658
>>
>>4336108
>write-in
>"What happened in Tech?"
John's the hacker mutant
Also Finch Darwin has been Pharos'd
>>
>>4336656
>>
>>4336689

John ain't no hack.

Also finch darwin who? Keep thinking that's a reference to something, but I seriously lack in the field of pop culture.
>>
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Delay in update due to not having a decent place to write. Crossing my fingers to get something out tonight.
>>
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>>4337219

“Because you’re my brother. That’s why.” That’s when you think it’s a good time as any to comfort John with a hug, because he doesn’t seem to want to press the matter of himself or mutants any longer. You might lack in the tact department, but you are smart enough to know when words are no longer needed.

The gesture is returned with the arm that’s next to you, and it ultimately ends with John hugging you instead of the other way around. Now at the receiving end of the hug, there’s something about it that takes you back to your childhood in those times where John would always be there.

Gradually, that melancholy has overtaken John fades, dying with the last rays of the afternoon sun, and it’s reassuring that, although the two of you are grown adults, some things will stay the same no matter what. Out of the corner of your eye, you see him smile a small, thankful smile that makes you want to smile but also cry.

Often, it’s hard for you to tell what John’s thinking, and, though he might be a master at hiding his worries and whatever else from you and Matt, at least you know that John wouldn’t turn you in or anything if he knew you were a mutant (not that you’d let that happen). However, you still can’t tell him now—not when there’s so much piled on his shoulders already. That’s why the moment when FutureLabs is taken down will be all-the-more satisfying for you, because John will be free.

>(1/?)
>>
>>4337471

Over the next few days, you find somewhere to keep practicing your agility— a rundown, industrial area that, with its closed alleyways and tightly-knit network of structures, makes for a perfect place to keep honing your skills and improve.

In the meantime, Matt joins you to demonstrate his ability with his slingshot, and you’re beginning to think that he must have the same knack with projectile weapons that John has, because he’s able to make his mark on nearly every shot. It’s pretty impressive, and you briefly wonder if good aim is something genetic.

You even let Matt test out the efficacy of the slingshot on yourself to see how it may stand against FutureLabs’ agents, though he hesitates to shoot you at first, but you reason that if you can handle a high-caliber bullet to the abdomen and live, then you can certainly handle having some steel balls flying at you at less than a tenth of the speed that a bullet travels.

Although he’ll be on call to teleport you out if things really do go awry, Matt still teaches Bernard how to do good, non-powered reconnaissance; but you’re crossing your fingers that capturing Pharos will be a simple in-and-out retrieval mission for you, and then you can figure out what to do with him afterwards.

But, other than the Pharos issue, threat of the task force, and the information you still need to get out, you think that everything is slowly, slowly coming together, and, for a moment, you wish you could fast forward to the part where it ends.

You’re so lost in your rapid, zig-zagging jumps that you nearly miss the ringing of the phone that you had been keeping on you.

“Hello?” Your voice comes out a little hoarsely from not expecting the call. Talk about quick.

“Hello to you too.” Phillip Huber greets. “I hope you weren’t in the middle of anything important, were you?”

“No. Not at all, Mr. Huber.” You were just jumping on buildings and letting your brother pelt you with metal balls while also hanging out with his son. Nothing too big.

“Anyways, I wanted to inform you that I will be issuing a public statement about Huber Enterprises next Thursday at seven o'clock in the Louis IX Hall.“ He did it! You didn't doubt Huber could do it, but it's so much more exciting to hear that it's actually going to happen."As an extension of my thanks to you-- not that I'm interested in knowing who you are-- I was wondering if you would like to be present for this event.”

>”That would be great, Mr. Huber. We’d love to be there in person for it.” Accept the offer.
>”Thank you very much, Mr. Huber, but we can’t show our faces in public like that. “ Graciously decline.
>write-in

>(2/2)

Sorry for short update. OP had stuff to do today, but hopefully since I have no social life we can get to eviscerating goons with our bare hands or something soon.
>>
>>4337668
>”Thank you very much, Mr. Huber, but we can’t show our faces in public like that. “ Graciously decline.
It's very risky and they'll use us to tarnish the guy and his findings
>>
>>4337668
>”That would be great, Mr. Huber. We’d love to be there in person for it.” Accept the offer.
We're already playing into Pharos' hands. If we do the "smart" thing and stay away, we fail to provide FutureLabs with an opportunity to do the dumb thing and overplay their hand by crashing the press conference for the sake of nabbing the pesky mutants that saved the old man. Let's use Pharos' brainwashing tactics against him.
>>
>>4338190
The idea is to remove the necessity of Pharos as the messiah he hopes to become. If public outcry shuts down FutureLabs before he can get inside and lead his Glorious Revolution against the wicked (puppet Hitler) Atticus Charles, he's just another bad guy, and we can take him down with the cooperation of society.
>>
>>4337668
>”That would be great, Mr. Huber. We’d love to be there in person for it.” Accept the offer.
>>
>>4337668
>>”That would be great, Mr. Huber. We’d love to be there in person for it.” Accept the offer.
He gives us a lot of legitimacy when we talk about this
>>
>>4337668
>”That would be great, Mr. Huber. We’d love to be there in person for it.” Accept the offer.

1. Siren is the (fish)face of the group and can change her face so we'll have some thing to hide our identity
2. She can take a hit as seen by tanking a sniper round. Just in case there's an attack
3. Keep Blink and Bludgeon in reserve for an escape plan
>>
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>>4338190

pretty sure us saving a random old-guy mutant is the least of the reasons why FutureLabs is mad af.

some, but not all, crimes we've committed are:
>assault and battery
>attacking authorities
>menacing
>littering
>trespassing on federal property
>trespassing on private property
>disturbing the peace
>vigilantism
>poaching


...Shhhhhh... it doesn't count if you don't get caught...
>>
>>4338611
Oh right, when we invaded the concentration camp. We're so sorry about making a mess in your underground concentration camp, we should definitely be locked up for breaking and entering your taxpayer-funded underground concentration camp. If we had any idea that it was FutureLabs' taxpayer-funded underground concentration camp that we were in, we would have left right away and gone through the proper channels to get legitimately sourced information on FutureLabs' taxpayer-funded underground concentration camp filled with torture chambers. Here's my wrists, lock me up officer, I was in FutureLabs' taxpayer-funded underground concentration camp filled with torture chambers where mutants and normies alike endure agonies almost too awful to speak of and frequently die as a result WITHOUT A HALL PASS.
>>
>>4338190
>>4338391

To clarify, we SHOULD or SHOULD NOT be going in as our fish-sona?

Just double-checking griggas.
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>>4338725
Yeah I think so. It's about mutant acceptance after all, not adorable teenager acceptance.
>>
>>4338725
Shouldn't because going as a high-value target would crash the conference before it takes off
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>>4339294

Hate the formatting of the post. I can delete a post without deleting a thread, right?
>>
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>>4338190
>>4338209
>>4338283
>>4338391

We can vote on whether or not Elise goes as herself or Kelpie when the time comes later on.
Also I didn't know posts could be deleted!!!

“That would be great. We would love to be there in person for it.” You tell Huber.

“You wouldn’t mind the possibility of being on camera?” The businessman’s voice sounds surprised.

“Not at all, Mr. Huber." If you're going to be somewhere that has cameras all over the place, of course there's a chance one will catch you. "What time does the conference start?”

“Any time is fine, as long as you’re there before it starts. Ten—twenty minutes beforehand is ideal, but take your time if you need to.” He is very much aware you have a teleporter on hand and can show up whenever you want. “I will send you a text so you can meet with one of the members of my private security team, and they will escort you to where you need to go.”

“Okay then.” You nod, committing the information to memory. “Thank you very much, Mr. Huber.”

Once you switch off the call, you leap back to where Matt and Bernard had been to tell them the news, where you find Matt is still at it with his slingshot and Bernard fiddling around with Matt’s pair of binoculars. They seem surprised that Huber would invite the three of you there, possibly as your alter-egos, but you still haven’t settled on whether or not you’ll be going as Kelpie or a heavily-disguised version of just yourself; because, while Huber is accepting of mutants, the majority of Konigsburg still laps up whatever heavily-filtered propaganda there might be on television. But you have a week to decide— that’s plenty of time for you!

“Wow, Dad’s really packin’ the big guns then.” Is the first thing Bernard says when you finish telling him everything that you heard on the phone, the statement causing Matt to look at him very, very strangely.

“Dad what?” Matt repeats as if his ears had just deceived him.

“Oh yeah. Phillip Huber’s… actually my dad.” Bernard is sheepish, scratching the back of his head with a hand. “We meant to tell you about it earlier, stickface, but we just kinda forgot with everythin.’”

Matt is quiet and considering as he ponders this newfound information, and, with the way he’s squinting at Bernard, it seems like he’s trying to compare the resemblance between the teleporter and the Huber CEO.

“I think I see the relation.” Matt finally says. “And I kind of figured that you might’ve had some personal connection to the Hubers or just money in general with the way you were acting that night, but how did Ellie find out?”

“She just wouldn’t stop buggin’ me until she got the answers.” There’s something fond in his features as he says this, and Matt has his eyes narrowed at him again, which Bernard is quick to notice. “What?”

“Nothing.” Matt shakes his head. “Absolutely nothing.”

>(1/?)
>>
>>4339321
>matt didn't figure it out
damn I thought he was supposed to be smart
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>>4339332

>Recreates FutureLabs blueprints from watching documentary
>Is the M-Guard's chief strategist and basement medic
>Is presumable computer-whiz
>Gets perfect marks in calc
>cannot figure out Bernard's dad
>tfw
>>
>>4339321
The GlowFish train rumbles on
>>
Sorry for post delay.

typing out shit now.

>>4339499

CHOO FREAKING CHOO!!!
>>
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>>4339321

The day after Huber called, you and Bernard end up finishing the video of your jaunt through FutureLabs, and, now that it’s complete, there’s a sense of triumph between the two of you at the feeling of having completed the rather long and arduous task.

Having spent several hours down in the depths of FutureLabs, the resulting video provided you with only a fourth of the time you had been there. This doesn’t change the fact that the place was and still is as terrible as it was, and you make several copies of the video just in case, storing the video on at least three separate USBs until you can buy more of them.

Matt still has his share of work to do, combing the hard drive for at least an hour a day. You think he’s about seventy or eighty percent through it, if you had to say.

Another thing of note is that John’s being noticeably nicer to you too; maybe it’s because he got some stuff he’d been holding in off of his chest or because you had genuinely reached out to him that day, and, even though the work-free version of your older brother wasn’t anything less than nice, it’s good to see him in a better mood than he was those few nights prior. However, every time he catches you and Bernard in the same room, he likes to snap photos of the two of you when he thinks you’re not looking so he can properly document yours and Bernard’s “dating.”

Well, at least that’s what you think he’s trying to do.

You can tell that John’s taking photos of you, because there’s a very slight quirking of his lips as he positions the camera your way, and it doesn’t really bother you too much, because it’s something that makes John happy. Bernard doesn’t seem bothered by it either; plus, it would be weirder for John if he didn’t think you guys were dating.

In light of your recent success with the video, Bernard reasons it’s a good time as any to celebrate, which is how you end up going with him to pick up some sweets at your café. Though Valjean is Sopor and is power is quite threatening, he doesn’t own the place, it’s not like he can do anything to you in public. Thankfully, Bernard is in and out with the bag of baked goods and not put in a coma or anything of the sorts.

As you take the route to the place where he hides away to teleport, Bernard deviates in his steps, which doesn’t quite register with you until you’ve come to a stop.

“What are we doing here?” You ask, realizing that you’re standing before an old butcher’s shop.

“We can’t celebrate until everyone’s got somethin’ to eat, right?” He reasons, before you’re pulled by the arm and straight into the shop.

>(2/?)
>>
>>4339669

The room is cold, and your nose is assaulted with the smell of several different kinds of meats, which has you nearly frozen in place until the blonde drags you back to your senses. You mouth waters from being surrounded by so much food in one small room, and, faintly, you hear Bernard talking to the butcher in… Italian, you think.

Some of the words sound very similar to French but not entirely so, and focusing on those minute differences between languages helps to keep your head clear. When the room is quiet once more, you concentrate the sound of the deli-slicer as it grinds through a large hock of meat.

“Hey Ellie. Was that too much for you?” Bernard asks once you're outside. Behind that smile of his, there’s an inkling of concern.

“No.” You shake your head. “I just don’t normally do my meat shopping in butcher shops.” Usually, you buy whatever you want from the grocery store, and, with the amount you eat, you have to go with what’s cheapest if you don’t go straight to the ocean. You might have money, but your parents do keep an eye on the allowance that you and your siblings are given.

Truth be told, the best stuff you’ve tasted outside of the ocean has always had a hefty price tag, like the parma ham that John sometimes buys to cook with. However, it’s much too expensive for you to eat like candy— that would be downright wasteful.

“Well, I hope that you enjoy what I got from this one.” Bernard says, breaking you out of your thoughts, and, at that, he hands you a hefty bag with a downright tantalizing aroma before you’re off to find another good place to teleport back home.

“Hey we’re back!” Bernard announces your return back to Matt’s bedroom.

“Valjean didn’t kill you?” Matt inquires as he shuts his laptop.

“No, he wasn’t there today!” Bernard grins. “Which means that these pastries will actually be filled for once, cause Aldo is the only guy there who knows his stuff.”

“Hooray for that.” Matt’s also smiling.

“Let’s have a cheers then for our hard work!” That’s all it takes for you to rip into the bag— but with cognizance— as you don’t want to tear straight through a gift in the span of five seconds.

The mixture of fat and lean meat is delicate on the tongue, but no less delicious than you thought it would be. Though your mutant features imminently end up bleeding through, you try not to let yourself get swept up in the euphoria of the taste, even though there’s a whole five pounds of meat for you to eat .

This must have been expensive you think— a lavish purchase that will be gone within the day— and, though you feel a little guilt for Bernard having spent that kind of money on you, you also feel thankful, the gratitude manifesting as an odd sense of warmth.


Since greenboi is of Swiss heritage, he speaks both German and Italian. Yeet.


>(3/?)
>>
>>4339675

Of course you should thank Bernard for the awesome gift. That would be the logical thing to do.

>What do you do/say?
>”This is the best stuff I’ve tasted in a long time!” Compliment the food.
>Offer some of the food to Bernard. Might not go with what he’s eating but it’s the thought that counts.
>Say something nice about Bernard.
>Words wat words? A good thanks doesn’t need words. Hug your BFFL!
>write-in

Sorry guys for the lapse in updates. I've had a kind of busy weekend.
Hoping to actually get into the stuff I've had planned, which means I might take a bit to refine the plan before the next update. Maybe I'll have the plan refined quickly-- hoping so so that we can get to some good old action!!! AND SLICING!!!

>(4/4)
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>>4339683
>Say something nice about Bernard.
GlowFish is becoming canon boys
>>
>cops after pharos
>valjean not present at cafe

DUN DUN DUNNNNN!!!
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>>4339730

i also want to know why do some people think John’s a mutant?
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>>4339683
>Say something nice about Bernard.
Something about him being thoughtful and also tie in that this food is delicious
>>
>>4339683
>offer Bernard food
"No please take it, I want you to have some."
>>4339732
The Little Prince.
It could still be several different kinds of misdirection.
Also, you've noticed how susceptibility to mutations can run in families?
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>>4339973
Honestly I still am very much a Valise. Damn shame he's got to be killed.
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>>4339683
>"Honestly, I- you didn't have to do all this for me. I'm touched. Thanks. It's sweet of you."

Doki doki, bitches.
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>>4339683

>”This is the best stuff I’ve tasted in a long time!” Compliment the food.
>>
>>4339973

If John ever got caught by the magic mutant-wand, I’d say he would have a pretty bitching power.
>>
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>>4340035
>>4339973
>>4339751
>>4339685

When you don’t have a mouthful of food obstructing your speech, you to attempt to say something to Bernard as a thanks.

“Bernard,” You say his name to get his attention, and, likely because of the meat clouding your mind, your brain struggles to think of something nice to say, as you’re caught up in-between telling Bernard how good the food is and something nice about himself.
.
“You…” Your brain and your mouth fail to cooperate, and what comes out is a stilted, awkward “You’re the best.”

Bernard instantly stills, and you want to scream— you want a riptide to drag you into the ocean— because you probably just sounded like an idiot, and you berate your fish brain for making you sound stupid. However, he seems to recover his wits fast enough, and, if you had to say, he looks a bit bashful at your compliment.

“Want some?” You offer him a slice of the meat, attempting to dispel the awkwardness. You also think that he should have some, just for how good it is.

“Nah.” He waves it away. “Bought it all for you.” Though you knew that much already, hearing it aloud brings a smile to your face; and, if you weren’t thankful before, then you certainly are now.

“Honestly, I- you didn't have to do all this for me. I’m touched.” You’re able to string a coherent sentence. “Thanks. It's sweet of you."

“It was no big deal, fishface.” He tries to play it off, eyes not quite meeting yours, but now he’s smiling too.

“You know what else is sweet?” Matt’s voice interrupts as he sidles up to where you and Bernard are sitting. “The fact that my pastry doesn’t taste like a clump of unfilled bread for once.” The room erupts into laughter at that.

“Hey Ellie. Mind grabbing us a couple of drinks?” The request comes from Matt a few moments later.

“No problem.” You tell him, rising from your seat on the floor and to the fridge to get a couple of bottles of water.

As you pass through the hall, you see John back on the couch with another book. A picture of contentedness, you’re glad to see that he’s doing something other than cooking and cleaning.

When his cell phone phone rings, the smile falls from his face, but he picks it up regardless.

“Martins speaking.” You know that John only answers that way when taking work calls, and Clyde said they’d call when they were ready to send out the task force.

>What do you do?
>Eavesdrop; this could be it
>Go back to chilling; it’s probably nothing.
>write-in
>>
>>4341190
>Eavesdrop; this could be it
>>
>>4341190
>>Eavesdrop; this could be it
>>
We should be wary about him recieving false info. He has already accidentally leaked some codes and it didn’t seem like they trust him last time.
>>
>>4341190
>Eavesdrop; this could be it
Now in colour !
>>4341257
Yup, but like we thought some threads ago, if they didn't fry him already he wasn't the only one with that code
>>
>>4341190
>Eavesdrop; this could be it
With our hearing we should be able to hear everything and still not be in John's direct line of sight
>>
>>4341364
>>4341306
>>4341251
>>4341213

You don’t need to move from where you stand as you wait to hear who’s on the other end of the line with bated breath.

“Heya, dumbass.” A gratingly accented voice sounds from the other end of the line. “How’s that vacation of your’s treatin’ ya?”

John gives a long exhale through his nose, patience already having disappeared. “Just tell me what’s the business, Clyde.”

“Well we found ‘im— that Pharos guy. Turns out he’s been hidin’ in another slumhole by the downtown area like the urchin he is, sleepin’ in garbage bins and working day shifts like he’s an actual member of society.”

John is silent, pondering this information for a few moments, until he asks. “Who are you bringing with you?”

“Hah! Always asking the good questions, Johnny.” Clyde laughs, and it’s as loud and raucous through the phone as it was on the beach. “Well, I’d love to take my mini-gun to a bar fight as much as the next bloke, but even the newer ones are too much of a hassle to drag along. Think of this as a dry run for the real thing— a good way to get those muscles of yours hot and pumpin’ before you move on to the real deal.”

“You don’t think anyone else might show up for him?” John could either be referring to the M-Guard or any of Pharos’ remaining followers, which you doubt there are.

“If there are, we’ll put a bullet in em,’ or let her deal with it.” The Australian says flippantly. “''Sides, we gotta do more tonight than just pelt some unlucky bastard with bullets— Doctor Charles wants to see progress, results, and all that shit.”

“I thought we were taking him in alive.”

“That was the plan, but, if he becomes more trouble than he’s worth, Doctor Charles gave us the go-ahead to kill him as a last resort. Either way, we’ll look good on TV.”

John says nothing at that, already displeased enough about the whole thing. “What time to I have to be there?” He inquires, in lieu of telling Clyde off, which is what he should be doing but can’t.

“Seven-thirty-ish— maybe eight o’clock… But the longer you dilly-dally, the less of a chance you’ll have to get your hands on a good Jaretta.” A pause in the conversation. “No wait, Eddie’s saved one for you. Good frig of a bloke he is.” Clyde says. “See you there.” And the call is ended.

>(1/2)
>>
>>4341511
>>4339977
>Damn shame he's got to be killed.
You know I didn't mean it, right?
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>>4341560
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>>4341574
Definitely remember saying or at least thinking that we'd end up with Sopor as a housemate. If Pharos is Sopor...
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>>4341595

If that came to be, poor John's credit card...

The most undervalued character of the whole series.
>>
>>4341511

7:02, the clock reads. You have time.

“Hey Elise.” John’s voice makes you jump. “Work called me back. If you plan to go out or anything later, try to stick around the neighborhood tonight.”

“Alright, I will.” You lie, and, in almost no time at all, John is ready to go. Before he’s out the door, you’re enveloped in a hug that you easily return, and, the second the door is closed, you head straight back to Matt’s room, nearly cracking his door of its hinges in your haste. “They found Pharos. John just got called in.”

“Wait. What about the ambush?” Bernard looks confused, likely having thought that the task force was just going after the three of you.

“It’s just Pharos this time.” You tell the two. “He’s in a slum near downtown.”

“A slum near the downtown area…” Matt repeats, pulling out his phone to presumably look for the slum where Pharos is hiding. “You heard the whole conversation, Ellie?”

You nod. “They may or may not kill him depending on how things go, and they’ll try kill to anyone who interferes. We should probably get going so we can start looking for Pharos before then.”

That’s all the prompting everyone needs to suit up, although not in your actual suits. Instead, you take your ratty hoodie and a pair of leggings, which are the most nondescript things you own, and then you put your hair up in a ponytail before half-shifting your features into your very-unappealing lizard-face.

Save for the yellow scales, you really do look nothing like Kelpie. Even your obviously webbed feet would be mistaken for something more reptilian in the dark.

Matt and Bernard also don themselves in very indiscriminate hoodies, along with a pair of balaclavas; the only thing Matt’s taken from his suit is the belt, because of the stuff he carries on him. Dressed to the nines, You think, as you survey yourselves, and, with how absolutely crappy your outfits are, you had gotten ready in pretty much no time at all, as the time is currently seven-twenty.

Now you have some time to discuss things before you get ready and moving yourself, which you should— cause you don’t want to go in blindly searching for one, highly-troublesome mutant.

>Get there first, survey the environment, and then form a plan depending on the circumstances.
>Address the issues of Eddie and Clyde— how to take out the more dangerous opponents first
>Address the issue of Pharos possibly resisting you
>You don’t need a complicated plan; you’re just going to get in and get out! GET GOING!
>write-in
>>
>>4341647
>Address the issue of Pharos possibly resisting you
>>
>>4341647
>Get there first, survey the environment, and then form a plan depending on the circumstances.
Which may end up being
>You don’t need a complicated plan; you’re just going to get in and get out! GET GOING!


>>4341667
Just knock him out and carry him. It's not like he's heavy to us.
>>
Forgot to mention, last reply of the day, and, now that I actually HAVE the refined plan for this, we can get slicing!!!

Updates: twitter.com/qmsiren
Also dropping this random poll here in the meantime :https://www.strawpoll.me/20519324
>>
>>4341694
>that pool
Oh my superior intellect
>>
>>4341647
>>4341694
I mean technically OP is always right but also a faggot so I don't know how to square that circle.
>GET GOING
The task force is gonna be fast
All we need to do is follow where they're going and then snap up that XP before they bust the door down.
>>
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>>4341647
We're really this easy are we?
>>
>>4341647
>Get there first, survey the environment, and then form a plan depending on the circumstances.

worth noting if we injure eddie and clyde now they won't give us problems later

but we might get futurelabs angrier at us
>>
>>4342228
Clyde's dangerous, but lucky for us, he's an idiot. Eddie otoh might even be a mutant. *Somebody* hacked our comms when we rescued VV at the old Crux hideout.
My opinion, the goal for this mission should be to go completely undetected and make it seem to FutureLabs like Pharos was never there.
>>
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Slight delay due to technical difficulties.

Also:
>Looks at poll
>vaguely remembers making it
>tfw

pic related
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>>4343193
>inb4 OP makes John a mutant for the sake of it
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>>4343241

I actually am a proud baby-daddy to several mutant-John pics, which I also don't have much recollection of drawing but I discovered them this morning.

Pic also related
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>>4341687
>>4341752
>>4342228

“Teleport us near Pliningen.” Those are Matt’s words, and then the floor you’re standing on turns into a rooftop that’s presumably nearby Pliningen. As one of the city’s more destitute ghettos, Pliningen sports a fairly large homeless population and therefore a large amount of homeless shelters. There’s not even a metro station there, which is a testament to how crime-ridden the place is. In other words, it is the unspoken asshole of Konigsburg for lack of better words, and it’s a perfect hiding place for a mutant-terrorist-slash-fugitive.

“Guessin’ that they’re tryin’ to surround him.” Bernard says, spotting the black vans already gathered along the road. It won’t be long until the task force heads in, you think, but it’s better that you’re here now rather than later, because it’s the smartest way to get a feel for what’s going on before you make your plan.

“But why do they need all of this rigmarole for just him? He doesn’t even have the Crux anymore.” Matt wonders aloud before deciding that there’s no point in questioning it, turning his attention back to you. “He will probably be where the most agents are gathered, so just head there, try to be as fast as possible, and try to stay unseen for as long as you can.“

You nod, but then you remember something else. “I don’t think it’s safe if we use the comms this time. Remember mine got hijacked last time, and that Eddie guy used them against us? He’ll probably do that again if he can.”

“Hmmph.” Matt sighs frustratedly, hands fiddling with his slingshot. “You need to have Bernard on speed-dial to get you out of there in case shit goes south though, and, if this guy can mess with phones too…” His brows furrow as he tries to think of a way around this.

“Well what if we find Eddie and take him out ourselves?” Bernard proposes. “Then we don’t have to worry about that jerkface messin’ with our comms or any of our electronics again, right?”

“You know what, B? That might actually be a plausible idea… “ Matt says, though he pauses and frowns as another thought comes to mind “… but they also have Clyde, and Clyde has his sniper rifle…”

“Then let’s go steal some bullet-proof vests and helmets first!” The teleporter exclaims, though still mindful of his volume. “We can pull a Sopor by pickin’ off a couple of guys and loot their stuff.”

Matt is quiet as he considers this option. “I mean, it would be beneficial in the long-run if we could disable either of them before they bring the task force to us. We’ll just have to be careful…” Though still hesitant, he’s more-or-less on board with Bernard’s plan.

“Yeah! That’s the spirit, stickface!” Bernard cheers.

As for you… well, the longer you stand here, the more time you’ll give the agents to get their hands on Pharos first.

>(1/?)
>>
>>4343307

“Guys.” You start. “If we can’t regroup, I’ll meet where we were doing our training this week.”

“Mhmmm.”

“Gotcha.”

Then you’re off, bounding from rooftop to rooftop and scanning the ground below for where there’s the most police activity. It looks like they sent in some regular cops first to hold Pharos at bay until the task force arrives.

You still think the amount of force that FutureLabs brought for just Pharos is a tad excessive, like what Matt had said, but this isn’t just a matter of capturing a mutant— it’s also about painting themselves as public heroes, which you think is the secondary goal that FutureLabs has set for themselves tonight.

There’s a whole city block cordoned off by police cars that’s full of decrepit brick buildings. It’s evident that they’ve narrowed down Pharos’ location to this area, but, unfortunately, it’s impossible to tell which building is the one in which he’s hiding. You know that you can’t just go through every building in hopes that one of them is the one that hold Pharos, because that will take far too much time.

>What do you do?
>Go through each of the buildings, one by one— you can be faster than FutureLabs!
>Try to narrow down the possible buildings Pharos could possibly be in
>Do a quick, aerial scan of the city block and see if there’s anything amiss
>Check the alleys; Clyde said that Pharos was sleeping in garbage bins
>write-in

>(2/2)
>>
>>4343377
>Check the alleys; Clyde said that Pharos was sleeping in garbage bins
>>
>>4343377
I smell a trap, kind of like the one Eddie set up before. Especially considering the task force is "a tad excessive" instead of the army they sent after Sopor. Pharos is a serious threat, he might not even be here. Why would they brief John so thoroughly over the phone?
I think they suspect John is somehow involved with the M-Guard, and I think the knowledge of our super hearing is being used against us again.
But we're not using our comms during tactical maneuvers, so we can't be trick-or-tracked unless that bullet from earlier had, say, a radioactive isotope that could be used as a marker. I don't feel great about using the phones either.
>write-in
>>I take back what I said about trying to do this without a trace. Scout for Clyde and Eddie, then regroup with Bernard to set up a surgical strike with a quick double blink that I kinda want to call a Batted Eyelash.
I feel like Matt. Let's dislocate some shoulders.
>>
>>4343516
Just noticed the new contradiction
Ok
Uh
Oh HEY I KNOW
We're in lizard form right?
That means we can't use Bernard after all except in an emergency like Matt suggests
But what we *can* do is claim allegiance with Pharos in our lizard form. Did we come up with an alternate codename yet?
>>
>>4343527

I had a few ideas that I was going to save for a vote but feel free to pitch ideas now.
>>
>>4343377
>Do a quick, aerial scan of the city block and see if there’s anything amiss
>Check the alleys; Clyde said that Pharos was sleeping in garbage bins
Kinda get the feeling that this is the set-up they were talking about
>>
>>4343377
>Do a quick, aerial scan of the city block and see if there’s anything amiss

both pharos and futurelabs related
>>
>>4343562
The Queen of England
>>
>>4343377
>Eat Clyde
>>
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Apologies guys for the slow updates. I want to go full-speed ahead and kick some agent behinds, but OP can't stay awake. Which sucks, cause I was ready to jump into all of the fun stuff reeeeeeeee Anyways, since I'm too much of a coward to post any of my imbibed drawings, I'll just leave you kings with this.

Feel free to screech at me. I want to screech too.
>>
>>4343733
What am I looking at here
I don't understand
>>
>>4343857

Half of one of the mutant-[redacted] concept pics that intoxicated-me had made— screenshot was supposed to be a lot bigger, but it looks like I flubbed it majorly.
>>
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>>4343857
>>
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>>4343409
>>4343572
>>4343574

Lizard-form is so ugly...

Of all of the possible ideas you have, you go off of what Clyde had been saying to John before--that Pharos had been sleeping in garbage bins— so you think your best lead is that for now.

You keep to the alleys that are further away from where the perimeter is set up and out of sight of the slowly-growing number of cops, quickly scanning them from above to see if there’s anything amiss. Keeping quiet, you find that there’s nothing of note in most of the alleys, because they’re just alleys. Plain, old alleys that are more-than-likely ridden with all sorts of nasty things, ranging from high pilings of trash to the acrid smell of urine.

In one of the alleys, you notice garbage spilling out from the front of one bin in a way that suggests it wasn’t merely the error of some disposal truck, and the worn-out blanket that had been hastily shoved underneath the large, metal bin gives you the feeling that you should look inside, which is how you have yourself arm-deep inside of some garbage can. Nearly recoiling at the stench that hits your sensitive nose, you hold your breath and try to breathe as little of the smell as you can.

It’s what you expect: garbage upon garbage upon— you guessed it— more garbage, and you mentally remind yourself this is yet another one of those things that you have to do for a good cause. You nearly want to call it quits with how much time you’re currently wasting on one, stupid garbage bin, until your hand hits something with a very distinctive shape.

Instantly, you grasp it and retract your hand from the bin, and you find that the object is a tranquilizer gun, one with a little stylized ‘F’ on the side of it. The logo of FutureLabs, you think, but you’re not sure how or why there’s tranquilizer gun from FutureLabs lying in a garbage bin, unless Pliningen has some rampant mutant crime that was just never broadcasted on the police scanners for you. With the help of your nose, you can tell that, past the rank garbage odor, someone had been handling the gun for quite a while, but wouldn’t FutureLabs and the media make a bigger deal out of it if it was mutant crime?

Whatever. You don’t have time to think about other secret mutant gangs right now. You can come back to look for them in your own time when the issues of Pharos and FutureLabs are both taken care of.

Pushing off the ground, you’re back on the rooftops to scan the ground below. In the time that you had taken to search the alleys, more cops have gathered in the street with a few FutureLabs agents interspersed, the only thing notable about the group is the young woman nestled in the center whose lack of proper gear seems to bother no one. The group of gear-clad agents are searching the buildings one-by-one, making their way up the street.

>(1/?)
>>
>>4344617

OP's gotta run some errands, so I'll be back in an hour or so to post the next part.
>>
>>4344617
>the young woman nestled in the center whose lack of proper gear seems to bother no one.
Oh no, a weaponized mutant
>>
>>4344651
this and the gun are really nogging my jogs
>>
>>4344617

>OnE hOuR oR sO lAtEr
>also low-quality drawfaget ftw

As you continue your aerial search of the city block, you take mental note of the buildings that the cops have entered and have yet to come out of— a homeless shelter, a parking garage, and an abandoned office building for now— and keep your ears peeled for shouting, gunshots, or anything of the like. You have limited time to retrieve Pharos before the agents begin to take to the roofs, for which you’ll have to start dodging gunshots.

By the time you’ve completed your surveillance of the whole block, the few agents who were sent into the homeless shelter and office building have returned, but not the rather large parking garage.

Your body is on the move once more, and you’re on the roof in mere seconds.

You think that a large, indoor parking garage seems is a good place as any to hide if you’re a fugitive. Newer than the rest of the slummy buildings around this place, you think it’s rather out-of-place among the worn-down, bricked buildings that comprise the rest of Pliningen.

Further focusing your senses, you keep your nose, ears, and even your fins peeled for heartbeats, people, or any other signs of life as you descend from the roof floor to the next, and, as you do, there are a number of heartbeats that come into your periphery, pumping together in a slow, gentle rhythm.

However, they aren’t on this floor, so you follow your senses in the direction of where the heartbeats are coming from. The way that the majority of the hearts are beating in that eerily calm unison faintly reminds you of your first encounter with Sopor, and you wonder if Sopor has come to Pharos’ defense. It would make sense, considering that he never cut his ties with the Crux, but it would also be a lot more trouble for you, because you’re not Kelpie right now— you’re some random, lizard-faced mutant that’s come to steal Pharos and get out of here.

You suppose that you’ll just have to be more on your toes if Sopor’s around, because you also remember that he likes guns, and not just the ones of the tranquilizer variety.

The next floor is traversed on quieter and stealthier feet in hopes that the echo of your footsteps in the nigh-empty parking garage doesn’t alert Pharos, Sopor, or whoever’s waiting, but the heartbeats are closer now— much closer than they were before.

>(2/?)
>>
>>4345206
>>”Why are you the one asking questions? Who are you, and where’s Pharos?” Pretend like you don’t know this guy.
>>
>>4345206
>>4343596
>>
>>4345061

Sandwiched in-between two columns and a few parked cars, you can tell there is life, both conscious and unconscious, and, peeking around the corner, you see a hooded figure propped up against the wall— a hooded figure with a gun in his hand, but he doesn’t realize your presence yet.

You’re going to have to do something about this guy, whether or not he happens to be Pharos or Sopor, but, before you can even decide what you’re going to do, you feel a heavy hand in your mind. A mental hand, whose presence you are acutely aware of—

—And it’s pulling you down, down down…

But you can’t go. You can’t succumb to it; be it to Pharos’ or Sopor’s power, you absolutely refuse.

Like that first instance you had tried to fight Sopor’s power, you’re kicking and clawing with all of the mental strength you have, but, this time, you are acutely aware of the cat’s cradle that is being wound around your mind, and, instead of attacking it with an animalistic fury, you fight it with quick, calculated strikes, using every last ounce of your willpower to push the hand out, to unravel each and every string that’s weaved itself into the scape of your consciousness.

You’ve never successfully freed yourself from Sopor’s ability, because you’re pretty sure it’s Sopor, but, you think you’re getting close, as you drive your hands once more into the silken fabric that had been trying to overtake you.

All too suddenly, the hand retracts itself, the strings loosen, and the presence is gone from your mind. Surprisingly, you’re still on your feet, and your mind doesn’t feel any worse for the wear. However, the person who is probably Sopor is standing directly in front of you, and there’s a faint upturn of his lips as he regards you with a strange sort of curiosity as he obviously does not recognize you. “And just who might you be?”

>Chameleon— a play-on to your shape-shifting nature
>Komodo— the first lizard species that came to mind
>The Lizard— simple and to the point
>”One of Pharos’ most loyal followers!!” Sopor is Crux, and so is Pharos. Ergo, he might be less apprehensive if you play the part of fanatic.
>”A fellow mutant!” Literally the cheesiest thing you can say.
>”Why are you the one asking questions? Who are you, and where’s Pharos?” Pretend like you don’t know this guy.
>write-in

I still dislike the lizard-form and cannot wait until I can trash it.
>>
>>4345227
>>
>>4345228
>”A fellow mutant!” Literally the cheesiest thing you can say.

why do you attack me brother
>>
>>4345228
Did we keep the tranq gun? Let's just shoot him in the neck while he's monologueing.
>>
>>4345228
>"Someone who's looking for you so certain people can't kill you. Call me...Iunno, Scales or something."
>>
>>4345318

I want to say yes, but then that would be a lie.

However, you can vote to knock him out with some good ol' fists, if you so choose
>>
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>>4345325
Sopor is Pharos so if he *actually* hasn't recognized us we can pic related. Literally.
>>
>>4345362

I have no words, anon.
>>
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>>4345325
>punch Sopor unconscious
>>
>>4345368

Also note that Elise doesn't know [redacted][redacted][redacted].
>>
>>4345375
Yeah...I know.
>>
>>4345228
>”A fellow mutant!” Literally the cheesiest thing you can say.
>The Lizard— simple and to the point
I like The Lizard, it doesn't imply a gimmick of some sort we're just a lizard
>>
I know we're gonna end up being The Lizard and I definitely switched to data to pad the votes but I still think The Queen of England is a funny ass name
>>
>>4345228
>”A fellow mutant!” Literally the cheesiest thing you can say.
Add "And it seems so are you. Why attack a fellow in nature ?"
>>
>>4345228
>I still dislike the lizard-form and cannot wait until I can trash it.
Yup, it's not cute, unlike fish which is fresh
>>
>>4345415

Yeah, everyone know's the real Queen of England is a legit reptile. Proof's in the pudding.
>>
>>4345420
Nonsense
She's a body snatcher clone.
The reptilian thing is a diversion, like connecting bigfoot with aliens.
>>
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>>4345259
>>4345324
>>4345404
>>4345418

“A fellow mutant!” You say, and it’s literally the cheesiest thing you could come up with. However, it’s also the most simple and to the point, and you think it’s best to get to the point before it’s raining bullet-hellfire upon the parking garage.

“I can see that.” Is the hooded figure’s response as he makes a gesture to your prominent mutant features. “Does this fellow mutant have a name?” No. Not this. Not these kids of stupid, cryptic games; if not for the fact that this guy might be Pharos, you would just knock him out and call it a day, but you won’t do that— you’ll attempt to reason with him first before you pull the trigger.

“I’m someone who's looking for you so certain people can't kill you.” You throw some of this guy’s games right back at him, saying your words under the assumption that you’re talking to Pharos. But if this is Pharos, then where is Sopor? “Call me...I dunno, the Lizard or something." Very subtly, you try to look beneath his hood, but he’s got it pulled so that the upper half of his face is not visible.

“The Lizard, huh? Guess my luck hasn’t completely run out after all…” The small smile he had before is a little more prominent. Then he proceeds to pull down his hood to reveal his face— a face that is exactly the same as you remember it from before, save for the cheap, featureless domino mask—and it’s almost startling how little his appearance has changed. “But yes, Lizard. I am Pharos.” The admission seems to be heavy on the tongue for him.

“Then why did you attack me before? If we’re both mutants, I don’t think we should be doing that kind of thing.” You think Sopor might’ve been onto something when he called you Pollyanna, because, although you might be fudging your words, they’re coming out naturally. Too naturally for your liking. Asshole.

“I was paranoid, so my apologies, Lizard.” Is his response.

“Then how about getting out of this place? More cops are going to be here any minute.” It's urgent that you get out quickly.

Right as Pharos is about to answer you, you hear the sound of something small and metallic clink, clink, clinking across the parking garage and bouncing right towards the two of you.

As you attempt to discern just what it is, the little, metallic object stops its trajectory towards you when it catches on a divot in the concrete, sending it flying straight into the air not too far from where you’re standing.

BANG!

All too quickly, your eyes and ears are sent alight with pain from the assaulting brightness and and noise. Thankfully, your eyes recover quickly, but you still are left with quite the headache. Pharos, meanwhile, has been left highly disoriented— much more so than you are— his face having taken on a stark shade of white.

>(1/2)
>>
>>4345475

Too slow. You think, your mind racing despite the pounding in your head, and you can hear the stamping of boots all around you.

You were far too slow, and now the task force is here.

>what do you do? (roll d100)
>grab Pharos and head back to the roof
>go through the lower floors
>stay here and attack whoever comes up
>write-in
>>
Oh yeah, last reply for the night. Until next time!

updates: twitter.com/qmsiren
>>
Rolled 74 (1d100)

>>4345477
>grab Pharos and head back to the roof
So Pharos isn't Sopor?
Where is Sopor? Why hasn't he delayed these cops?
>>
>>4345498

This was the first wind of the cops to set up the perimeter and scour the buildings and relay it to FL.

>so pharos isn’t sopor

One guy in a room using Sopor’s power with Pharos’ face. Pretty sure everyone in the thread knows the answer
>>
>>4345503

Elise’s 3/5 intelligence stat strikes again.
>>
Rolled 48 (1d100)

>>4345477
>grab Pharos andhead back to the roof
Though I feel like out the window is safer from sniping Clydes.
>>4345475
>>4345498
>his face having taken on a stark shade of white.
Oh Christmas he's been hypnotized to tell the cops that he's Pharos
They've been separate people all along
Whaaaaaaaaat
>>
Rolled 99 (1d100)

>>4345477
>grab Pharos and head back to the roof
>>4345498
>So Pharos isn't Sopor?
that's kinda obvious anon, since we met both and know the identity of one
>>
>>4345508

>stark shade of white

Cause he just got flipping flashbanged!!! Those things are fun for normies. Much fun.

>>4345510

THIS ROLL!!!!
>>
>>4345510
I'd bet my ass they're closely related
>>
>>4345508
>his face having taken on a stark shade of white.
anon that's actually normal because of the chemicals of a flashbang and there's also the fact his face is similar to the pharos we met
>>4345514
Lizard is dope to the rescue
>>4345515
maybe
>>
>>4345503
But if we know Pharos' face and Pharos is Sopor and we didn't recognize Valjean then who was Valjean?

I may be retarded but at least I'm not stupid!
>>
>>4345526


Alright. I reread that part. I had my rough draft and actual draft kind of intermixed and didn’t realize I had left the that paragraph there instead of the other— there was a version with Pharos w/ and w/o mask and I meant to use the one w/o, cause yeah Elise isn’t a total tard.


That, and my ability to think straight kind of decreases when I’m tired
>>
>>4345569
>shoot the tranquilizer dart into the mystery person's neck and leap out the window
>>
>>4345510
This is anon
I assumed that the Crux masks covered the whole face until I checked the drawings and then I just sort of doublethinked it
>>
>Pharos power is Les Miserables
>Victor Hugo is author of book
>Pharos is presumably Sopor who is also Victor Valjean
>Fake name was Hugo
>google meaning of names “Victor” and “Hugo”

I no longer need convincing.
>>
>>4346032
You keep saying that and I'll keep noticing the conspicuous gaps in the plans of Pharos, Sopor, and FutureLabs
>>
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>>4345510
>>4345508
>>4345498

Good catch to the anon who caught that mistake with Pharos leaving the mask on-- was not supposed to be, but this was the result of me copy-pasting the wrong stuff and forgetting to reread it. Not sure I can delete it now, so I guess I'll suffer and give 2-3 paragraphs of reveal shit.

Pharos is pretty dazed and confused at the moment, staggering on his feet from the light-sound attack, and your ears are still ringing too. Because Matt seems to have a morbid fascination with different types of weaponry (and not just that of the melee type), you’ve heard all about what a stun grenade can do if it goes off too close to you: temporary loss of vision, hearing loss, and disorientation.

Unlike when you had been in FutureLabs’ mutant-prison with Bernard, where the alarms had been blaring constantly, the grenade was a single instance of pain that your body can quickly recover from.

The grenade's effects will fade given some time, but you scoop Pharos up anyways so you can grab him and run. Somewhere along your rescanning of the parking garage floor for additional signs of life (because you had almost thought that Sopor had been here too), the realization hits you like a shitton of bricks, because you suddenly recall that this is Pharos, and there had been no one here but him that’s conscious—

In the moment, you honestly feel more stupid than you’ve ever felt, because you were so hyper-focused in your search for Pharos that your mind hadn’t been able to put the pieces together. If you had a free hand, you might’ve just slapped yourself for being so dense. Figures why you struggled so much in school.

“What’s wrong?” Valjean-slash-Sopor-slash-Pharos asks, because your feet have stopped moving.

“Trying to figure out where the exit is.” Is your rather curt response as you search for the sign to the way to the upper floors.

Before you know it, you’re back on the roof, and you see more vans parked on the outside of the parking garage, along with one or two armored trucks. The whole place is surrounded by cops and agents of all sorts, but, by some miracle, only a couple of them have taken to the adjoining roofs, the ones who try to shoot you ultimately missing.

>(1/2)
>>
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>>4346466

Soon, the sound of sirens and police commotion begins to fade, and it’s just you bounding from roof-to-roof with one of the most highly sought-out mutant criminals in your hold.

Talk about lucky, you think, as you had nabbed Pharos-slash-Valjean with little to no issue. The real struggle will be convincing him to free the other mutants from his vocal spell, which is something you have yet to figure out; because, if and when he learns who’s really rescued him, Valjean will probably put up a huge stink.

But you did it for now! That’s the most important thing, and you think you’re nearly home free. However, your luck is short-lived, as you hear the sound of rapid, heavy footsteps pounding on the roof behind you.

You sense it before you feel it, something flying towards you at high speed, and it goes straight through your skin, embedding itself it your back. You give a harsh intake of breath at the sudden pain, and, with how much it hurts, you have no choice but to stop and pull it out, finding that the thing that struck you was a long, pointed shard that very much reminds you of a large icicle. A new weapon, perhaps? But you’re not even off of the current roof you’re standing on as another one of the objects whizzes towards you once more, this time grazing your arm.

Stealing a glance behind you, you find that there is a lone woman who has been giving chase— the same woman who had been among the first small throng of FutureLabs agents, and there are similar spikes running down the length of her arms. What parts of her aren’t covered in a skin-tight bodysuit glisten under the city lights, clear like a precious stone, and, much too quickly for your liking, she jumps across the roof and meets you with a leaden fist that you barely block with the arm that’s not holding Valjean, sending her skidding backwards.

When you surmised that Atticus Charles might have mutants working for him, you didn’t think he would have foot-soldiers too, but what better way to beat a mutant than with another mutant? And this woman, this mutant woman: she doesn’t look like she’s willing to back down anytime soon.

>what do you do?
>See if he can do his sleep-thing on her
>Say something to her; ask her wtf (or say something else)
>Drop Valjean, get him to hide, and attack her yourself (roll d100)
>keep running, see if you can lose her
>write-in
>>
>>4346503
>keep running, see if you can lose her
we can't lose time here, since she probably contacted the boyz if she managed to chase us
>>
>>4346503
>See if he can do his sleep-thing on her
>>
>>4346503
>keep running, see if you can lose her

See if Val can sleep her as we run away but since they prepped her to come after him specifically I'm not too hopeful.
>>
>>4346653
But they don't know that sopor is pharos
>>
>>4346677
Do we know what they know? They found him before we did, they might have also connected his identities.
>>
>>4346503
>"Sopor, sleep it!"
>>
>>4346677
Yo you're right
Delete my vote
Strictly a lurker
>>
>>4346699

I'll leave it here for posterity.
>>
>>4346696
>>4346699
>>4346653
>>4346631

“What’s happening?” Asks Valjean, because that’s the easiest thing you can call him in your mind. You’re still running as fast as you can possibly go with the crystalline mutant hot on your heels.

“Enemy mutant. Saw her with the FutureLabs’ agents before.” He shifts to take a look over your shoulder to confirm it. “ Can you use your power on her like you did me?”

Valjean doesn’t hesitate and starts off with his humming. However, the crystalline mutant doesn’t halt in her tracks, so Valjean, evidently seeing the futility in his deed, switches to a singing that’s more than loud enough for the woman to hear. A quick glance behind you show that it’s still not working, and she’s still matching you pound-for-pound with every step.

After another while of him singing at the mutant with absolutely nothing happening, Valjean stops.

“What gives?” You want to know why his power isn’t working on her. By the look on his face, you can tell that Valjean’s not quite sure what’s going on either.

“I don’t know. This has never happened with my power before.” Valjean frowns. “It’s like I’m trying to sing to a wall, cause her mind isn’t responding to my voice.”

You were banking on his power to get you out of this, but apparently it’s ineffective on mutant rock women. Now you’re going to have to find some other sort of way to shake her off, otherwise you’re going to become a human pincushion the longer you keep this up.

No sooner than you think the words ‘human pincushion’ do another few shards come flying at you, two of them missing but the last one catching the back of your leg but not embedding, and it causes you lose your footing on the edge of the roof you were on, sending you tumbling to the ground.

>(1/2)
>>
>>4347150

You angle yourself so that your back is to the ground to preserve the mutant criminal in your hold, bracing yourself as you hit the asphalt. It doesn’t hurt too badly for you, because it wasn’t too high up, but it sure did jostle Valjean. Better jostled than dead, you think.

As you pick yourself up off the ground, the gem-like mutant lands not too far away. Her arms crackle and pop as new growths emerge, and it seems like she’s gearing up to attack you again.

>what do you do?
>Get Valjean to hide, then attack. (Roll 1d100)
>”What’s your problem, and why are you working for FutureLabs?!”
>Say something else (write-in)
>Keep running
>write-in
>>
>>4347157
>”What’s your problem, and why are you working for FutureLabs?!”
>>
>>4347157
>”What’s your problem, and why are you working for FutureLabs?!”
>Get Valjean to hide, then attack. (Roll 1d100)
Do we roll with votes or after votes are concluded?
>>
>>4347182

We usually go with the vote. If something else wins, we take that over the roll vote, so your roll will only count if it's the choice that wins out.
>>
>>4347183
>>4347179

What I mean is roll away if you want. That's pretty much how we've been doing it for all the threads.
>>
Rolled 28 (1d100)

>>4347186
Alrighty
>>
>>4347157
>”What’s your problem, and why are you working for FutureLabs?!”
>>
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>>4347160
>>4347179
>>4347212
>>4347252

The mutant woman’s body has shifted completely into that shimmering crystal, her vivid-gold eyes nearly glowing in the dark. You feel the presence of some bystanders in the street, some of them running, some of them staring at the strange scene before them, and you hope they get out of here in case things get ugly.

However, you still want to know what this woman is doing on the side of FutureLabs, because it bothers you that such a physically-capable mutant is choosing to fight for them instead of against.

“What’s your problem, and why are you working for FutureLabs?” You ask, but you keep a cautious distance from her.

She doesn’t respond, raising one of her arms at you and shooting off one of her shards that you dodge, and it embeds itself into the apartment behind you. You feel something hot and furious rise within you, because not even a mere foot away from the shard’s impact was a teenager who had been much too curious for his own good.

“What the hell?” Your voice is raised, enraged at her carelessness. “Don’t you see you just nearly hurt someone?” Yet again, the woman remains mute, not a shred of remorse on her features, but thankfully the boy had smartened up and ran.

“It’s a lost cause, Lizard. Don’t even bother.” Valjean speaks up. “Talking to her isn’t going to get us anywhere.” Taking a closer look at the woman, you don’t see much behind that golden gaze, but perhaps it’s just a part of her mutation— that her eyes look the way they do.

Your musing is cruelly cut short when she’s at you with another gem-encrusted fist, and you’re forced to take the brunt of the hit in lieu of Pharos once again. You feel something crack inside of your torso as the wind is knocked out of you, the secondary part of your brain flaring at the fight that’s about to start, and, forcedly, you punch the crystal woman so hard that she’s flying backward to the other end of the street.

However, like a human zombie, she gets right back up. A blur of shining stone, she makes another charge for you, and you raise one of your arms to parry her, fin meeting precious gem. Sparks fly in the air in a battle of durability, your fin nearly buckling under the force of the diamond-like substance.

She tries to swipe at you with a jagged arm, but you scoot backwards, out of her reach. Now you’re leading her in circles on rooftops and around the street, Valjean still in your hold, and you feel like your options are diminishing by the second as the never-ending chase continues.

You want to run, you want to fight, but you also want to get out of this in one piece. This crystalline woman, ever-persistent, doesn’t seem to want you to achieve the last option, which is why you’re beginning to feel that your only choice might be to take her down now.
>>
>>4347333

>What do you do?
>Put Valjean down somewhere, attack (roll 1d100)
>Keep running, and stay on the defense (roll 1d100)
>write-in

Last reply of the night kings! Until next time!
Updates: twitter.com/qmsiren
>>
Rolled 28 (1d100)

>>4347337
>Put Valjean down somewhere, attack (roll 1d100)
Yup, time to put her down and get time for us since she can follow quite easily
>>
Rolled 92 (1d100)

>>4347337
>Put Valjean down somewhere, attack (roll 1d100)
>>
Rolled 83 (1d100)

>>4347337
>Keep running, and stay on the defense (roll 1d100)

I'm sure we'll be able to shake her eventually
>>
Rolled 17 (1d100)

>>4347333
>"It's like I'm trying to sing to a wall."
>you don't see much behind that golden gaze
>like a human zombie.

FFS, she's functionally braindead. Whatever Futurelabs did sucked the cognizance out of her. She's more of a computer than a living person at this point- she's taking orders from on high, but beyond that there's nothing there.


>Put Valjean down somewhere, attack (roll 1d100)
>>
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>>4347344
>>4347363
>>4347745
>>4347757

With an extra burst of strength, you push yourself to gain some distance on the crystal mutant, sprinting fast enough that there’s a couple of roofs between the two of you.

“You need to hide.” You tell Valjean as you hastily drop him, and his face twists at the rough landing on what must have been his still-broken leg. He doesn’t protest though, situating himself in between the two ventilation systems that are there— a good place to be in the event of sniper fire, or any gunfire for that matter.

Not even a second after releasing Valjean from your hold, you turn to face the mutant woman who’s flying straight towards you with a fist, and you react with a quick jab of the foot. She’s sent backwards into the asphalt, a rough imprint of her body left in the road, and you leap down to meet her with a barrage of punches and kicks that are much too fast for her to counter.

You go for the arms, because the arms have spikes, and, although you aren’t spared from their sharpness, you feel the shards crackle and crunch beneath your fists as her diamond-like body is simultaneously destroyed and remade. She attempts to return your attacks with any viable shards, some of them embedding but most of them too damaged to do anything to you.

Something cracks beneath your fist, the noise of it raw and satisfying to your buzzing mind; and, for a split-second, you see her face contort before it switches back to that same, dull expression. That’s when you think that the woman might be ready to give up. Instead, more of the crystal spreads down her arms and torso like wildfire, and she attempts to lash out again with renewed fervor.

>(1/2)
>>
>>4348591

Her crystals scratch and draw blood, scrapes and cuts closing up on near-instant, but they fail to do anymore damage than that, because they’re weaker now— far weaker than they had been when you first encountered her. Another hit, and your fist completely breaks through the layer of glistening stone.

Like glass. You think. Just like glass.

She kicks you hard for that, sending you crashing into a metal stairwell and beginning another charge that tears the entirety of the structure off of its hinges, and you roll off of it in the nick of time for it to plummet to the ground.

The mutant comes out of the wreckage unscathed, which has something within you wanting to rectify that. Amid the blood pounding in your ears, it’s clear to you that she’s flagging, but her refusal to give up is as adamantine as her gemstone body. You think one more good attack will do it, just to drive it home.

>what do you do?
>KEEP HITTING!!! (Roll 1d100)
>write-in

>(2/2)
>>
Rolled 63 (1d100)

>>4348675
>KEEP HITTING!!! (Roll 1d100)
>>
Rolled 78 (1d100)

>>4348675
>KEEP HITTING!!! (Roll 1d100)
Let's finish this
>>
Rolled 73 (1d100)

>>4348675
>>KEEP HITTING!!! (Roll 1d100)
>>
>>4348675
>KEEP HITTING!!! (Roll 1d100)
>>
>>4348871

forgot to roll senpai
>>
>>4348919
we already have 3 rolls, so I didn't bother on purpose

I only voted to discourage clever write ins
>>
>>4349083
>Just leave her. You need to get back to getting out of here.
I think she was being in some sort of control since she's struggling to speak
>>
Oy vey, why did you delete the post ?
>>
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>>4348684
>>4348689
>>4348756
>>4348871

With mind and instinct working as one, you continue to pummel the woman. Another elbow to the face sends her back to the ground, any more crystal that she tries to produce easily broken by your strength.

Her transformation falters, and she barely summons it back before the next fist hits her square in the sternum. “Nggggh—“ The gold in her eyes briefly flickers as she rolls to the side to avoid the next fist. There hasn’t been a single defensive move on her behalf the whole fight, but, now that she’s flailing— barely keeping hold of her power— you don’t think that the crystalline mutant has too much of a choice.

She rises to staggering feet, as she’s visibly torn between running from the fight she’s doomed to lose and continuing to go until there’s absolutely nothing left. Rough, haggard breathing fills the street, and, with the way her eyes are settled on you, you would think she was about to make another attack.

However, after what feels like an eternity, the crystalline mutant falls to her knees, staring haplessly from her place on the ground. She’s obviously tired and worn out from giving her all, but you don’t think she’ll try to fight you again. Something about this victory of yours seems oddly hollow, and you don’t know why— just that it does for some unknown reason.

Cautiously, you move to inspect the mutant, on your guard in case this happens to be a ruse, but she just… sits there, doing absolutely nothing. You’re close enough now that you could reach out if you wanted, which you do by poking her on the shoulder, but nothing happens. Did she burn out that bad?

“Hey, are you alright?” You try speaking instead. No response from the crystal mutant. “I said, Are you alright?” For the briefest fraction of a second, her eyes focus on you before they flicker back to that glazed-over gold, and there’s a harsh, gurgling noise that emanates from her mouth.

“Nnnn….” She struggles to use her voice. “Nnnnnngg—nnno...oh…“ There’s something about this that feels wrong, but, since she’s no longer trying to fight you, you have a chance to see what she has to say for herself.

Or not, because the agents could be here any second. However, you see nothing on her body that she could remotely use to contact the other FutureLabs personnel.

>What do you do/say?
>”Do you need help getting up?” Offer a helping hand.
>”I know we just fought each other, but my name’s Lizard. Is there something I can call you?” Break the ice before seeing what information you can glean.
>Just leave her. You need to get back to getting out of here.
>write-in
>>
>>4349106

Spelling error. And now that I've learned how to delete posts, the power is strangely addicting.
>>
>>4349107
this >>4349102
>>4349109
understandable
>>
>>4349107

Last reply for this session. Tomorrow we continue the XP grind! get rekt FutureLabs!

twitter.com/qmsiren
>>
>>4349107
>grab both her and pharos and yeet
>>
>>4349107
>>
>>4349999

Epsilon trial subject?
>>
>>4349592
I must agree. We can deprogram her at a safe place.
>>
>>4349592
+1
Maybe matt can tell us something
>>
>>4349107
Some people take getting Pharos'd harder than others.
>>
Delayed but writing now.
>>
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>>4349592
>>4350087
>>4350279

You’re honestly not sure what you should do about the crystalline mutant who appears to be one step away from comatose, as she hasn’t said anything else since she tried to speak to you. There’s a strong urge to take her with you. Because, if FutureLabs isn’t coming back for her, then this could be a good chance for you to get her as far away from them as possible, but maybe you can get some information out of her in the meantime, since she no longer seems like she wants to kill you.

Lifting her up, the woman doesn’t struggle at all, and, in an instant, you’re back on the roof where you’d left Valjean.

“You brought her with you.” Valjean’s voice is incredulous. From behind his mask, he levels a glare at the barely-conscious mutant woman in your arms.

“She’s a fellow mutant.” You argue with some basic Crux drivel.

“If she’s working with FutureLabs, then she’s a traitor.” He scowls. “What business do we have with traitors, Lizard?”

“If we take her away from FutureLabs, then she can’t take orders from them anymore, and I thought we could also interrogate her about what their plans are.” At that, Valjean doesn't object. Now all you have to do is figure out how to get the mutant woman awake enough so she can grab hold of your back and you can get her and Pharos out of here.

Setting her against one of the ventilation boxes, you find that she hasn’t dozed off yet, but her eyes are still hazy and dazed. Valjean has started up his humming again, and you wonder what he’s trying to accomplish by using his power on the gemstone mutant when the first attempt had been a bust.

Half-lidded eyes open up a little more— eyes that are still trying to decide whether or not they’re gold— and she actually looks a little more aware. The humming stops, and Valjean comes closer to inspect the woman.

“What did you do to her?” He asks, suddenly more interested in the crystalline mutant than he had been the entire time she was here. You don’t answer, because all you did was beat her up, but he’s now fixated on her like she’s some sort of puzzle to solve, the humming beginning again. It takes all-but two seconds before the mutant’s eyes are blown wide like saucers, the song stopping abruptly as her face twists in pain.

“AAaaaggghhh—“ She brings her hands to her head, wide-awake now. From nearby, Valjean has a hand unto his own temple, but, at the moment, you’re more concerned for the crystal mutant.

“Are you okay?” You start, crouching down to her level, and she’s looking at you now with most of the dazedness gone from her eyes.

Her gaze flickers between you and Valjean, shoulders tense and back pressing into the ventilator. Though such behavior is normal in the face of two enemies, there’s something about her behavior that strikes you as wrong, because the demeanor that she had prior had been just the opposite.

>(1/?)
>>
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>>4350890

Eventually, she gathers enough of her wits to speak, and the words only serve to confuse you even more.

“…W-Who…” Her mouth tumbles over the word. “…who are you?”

You stare, blinking once, then twice at the mutant woman who apparently doesn’t remember having fought you. Immediately, your mind flits to Valjean and his power, because his power is good at messing with minds. When you turn to face him, however, he’s just as weirded out as you. So what the frig?

You want to attribute it to power burnout, but there’s something in your gut that’s telling you it’s not. Usually, your intuition is right when it comes to stuff like this. Though, you have no time to think on it any further, as you hear the sound of armored cars barreling towards your street. “Cops.” You say aloud to let everyone know it’s time to get moving.

The gemstone mutant doesn’t react to the news on the incoming danger, and you realize that you’re going to just have to carry her in your arms herself instead of having her hang onto your neck like you planned… because she’s just not putting anything together, nor does she have a clue what’s going on around her. It’s like she’s brain—

Oh. The conclusion strikes you like a hit from Matt’s favorite bat, and you play the words over in your head. Braindead. Mutant. Agent.

No, you think. Maybe not braindead, because she’s still able to speak and express emotion. Brainwashed? That might be it, and you wonder how you figured that out when Pharos had been under your nose for months. You blame your startling lack of common sense— but the cars are now visible from your rooftop, agents swarming onto the street.

>(2/?)
>>
>>4350939
I wish I'd made this
>>
>>4350939
So that's why his power didn't work on her
>>
>>4350939

Not daring to raise your voice higher than you have to, you tell Valjean, “You’re going to have to hold her while I carry you.” He doesn’t look too thrilled about it, but it’s not like this is going to be a walk in the park for you, as both Valjean and the gem mutant will be a tricky carry due to their bulk— not their weight. Though she isn’t too short, she’s unbelievably thin, so it’s possible to hold both of them at once.

As soon as you jump off the roof, you’re going to have to book it, because the task force won't have any sympathy for you.

>Where to run? (Roll 1d100)
>Keep to the roofs
>Keep to the streets
>Go to (other)
>Hide and attempt to call Matt and Bernard
>Write-in

>(3/3)
>>
Rolled 15 (1d100)

>>4350992
>Keep to the roofs
>>
>>4350950

Your hieroglyphics confuse me.
>>
Rolled 79 (1d100)

>>4350992
The clever write-in strikes again
>If there are backyards and alleys I vote for that.
Are sewers an option? Because that might be xtreme.
>>
>>4351037

Sewers are totally an option!!

Let's eat shit for real!
>>
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>>4351042
>>
Rolled 14 (1d100)

>>4351042
>>+1 for sewers if Lizard girl says "cowabunga"
>>
>>4350992
Sewers
>>
>>4350992
>Keep to the streets

I bet they figured we use roofs by now
Also we can't fireman carry one on each shoulder?
>>
>>4351650

Might've booze-posted again and didn't revise before posting, so that didn't cross my mind at the time-- but we can do that!
>>
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Slight post delay. Writing now.
>>
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>>4351600
>>4351071
>>4351037

You’re about to jump off the building when you realize that carrying both Valjean and the crystal mutant in front is not a good idea. You can barely see over the crystal mutant’s shoulder, and you’re not sure if you actually trust Valjean to hold her at such high speeds in case something were to go wrong. Without warning either of them, you take the crystal mutant first over one shoulder and then Valjean over the other, finding that, despite their bulk, it’s much easier to carry them.

With both of them in a fireman’s carry, you think you’re all set, and there’s a shout of “Cowabunga!” from a distinctively Australian accent as the sound of gunfire goes off from below. That war-cry is enough for even more bullets to come flying your way, and you hear the impact of lead against brick as you’re soaring straight towards another building to kick off of it in the opposite direction.

Some agents try to run for you, others continue to shoot, and, with your senses, you feel one bullet whizz right before your head, but, soon, the armed men are nothing but specks as the distance between your party and theirs becomes ever-greater.

Another few city blocks of running and jumping later, and you spy your next escape route: an entrance to the sewers— and you pull the lid to the manhole right off so that Valjean and the crystal mutant can get in first.

The crystal mutant looks at the manhole with apprehension, not liking the idea of going into some unknown tunnel.Valjean looks like he wants to argue about the choice of escape route but doesn't, edging down the metal rungs slowly due to his leg, and the crystal mutant follows suit. Even though she’s brainwashed, you’re glad that she has the sense to know that running equals good and gunmen are bad, or maybe everything’s just happened so fast for her that she doesn’t have time to question what’s going on.

Once everyone’s down, you climb in yourself and pull the metal cover over the sewer’s entrance, and, stealing a quick glance below, you let yourself drop to the ground.

As you navigate the narrow sewer tunnels, you still have to carry Valjean who had not been happy to admit his injury (which you think must be either a pride or image thing for him), while the crystal mutant follows behind you. You’re hoping that the tunnels will widen up somewhere along the way so you can pick both of them up again and mad-dash to the sea, but it’s slow-moving since the crystal-mutant’s tired from the fight.

Despite her tiredness, she seems a bit braver and more curious too, enough that she asks you the question, “Where are we going?”

>(1/2)
>>
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>>4352320

You open your mouth to talk, but then you remember that you’re talking to a brainwashed, weaponized mutant, which makes you unsure of how to respond. You don’t think she’s going to go back to kill-mode or anything, but, if Matt’s countless collection of sci-fi movies has taught you anything, it’s that brainwashed people are very easy to trigger.

You just settle for the simple and vague response of, “A safe place,” which seems to satisfy the crystal mutant.

“You mean my room?” Implying that she was one of the mutants in the cells.

You frown. She was probably one of the prisoners with a particularly notable power, and FutureLabs, being FutureLabs, did what they did best once they got her hands on her and probably thought that the experimentation wasn’t enough.

You wonder how much she knows about what they had been doing to her and how they were doing what they were doing to her. Was it a chemical, a drug, or another mind-molding mutant? You don’t think it’s the latter, because then how would you have been interacting with Conduit when you went to FutureLabs? The only one with the answers is walking right behind you.

>What do you do/say?
>Attempt to call Matt or Bernard
>”Pharos, what were you trying to do to the crystal mutant with your power?” Ask Pharos what happened back there.
>Ask her about where she had been before, what they had been doing before she “woke up”.
>Ask the crystal mutant something else (personal information, power, etc.)
>Keep walking in silence until the tunnel widens
>write-in

>(2/2)
>>
>>4352323
>Ask the crystal mutant about how she ended up working for FutureLabs
I have some fun guesses about how her power works but that's headcanon
>>
>>4352341
She doesn't even seem to know she's working for them. Maybe it's better to try and
>figure out how she got captured
Because wasn't she *not* Crux, or very early Crux?
>>
>>4352323
>”Pharos, what were you trying to do to the crystal mutant with your power?” Ask Pharos what happened back there.
>>
>>4352323
>”Pharos, what were you trying to do to the crystal mutant with your power?” Ask Pharos what happened back there.
>"And what was in your way?"
>>
>>4352323
>Ask her about where she had been before, what they had been doing before she “woke up”.
>>
>>4352341
Oh all right. Here's the headcanon.

>I think Elise's ability is more durable, but Crystal-Girl has more control over where her crystalline structures develop.
>The "brain damage" is actually a defense developed by her specifically to fight Pharos' ability. She may have replaced part of her brain with crystal on a semi-permanent basis, which looks from the outside like cavitation dementia.
>I'm guessing that she figured out how Pharos' ability works without him telling her about it in the early days of the Crux, and felt understandably violated. Pharos, the ultimate narcissist, would interpret not wanting to forfeit one's opinion and identity as betrayal.
>She may have been taken to FutureLabs by her folks when she started using the dementia defense against Pharos. Her mutation would look finite or cancerous to researchers, like something that can be removed with sufficient specific safe stress. They would realize their mistake after making the "problem" much much worse.
>Her "close friend" Pharos would have visited her while she was sick and seen an opportunity to seize power in the visiting researchers. Being the ultimate narcissist, he would view this seizure of power as necessary for the safety of mutant-kind. Punishing a betrayer is also necessary, and good for the development of her ability.
>>
>>4353526
I think you're thinking too far for this quest
>>
>>4353552
Worldbuilding is my dementia
>>
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>>4352377
>>4352435
>>4352543

“Pharos, what were you trying to do to the crystal mutant with your power?” You ask, because you want to figure out how he got the other mutant to get out of her haze.

“I was trying to see what was wrong with her mind.” He says. “When I tried to use my power, her mind opened up for me for a little bit, but, when I tried to open it up more, it basically kicked me out.”

“What was in your way before?” Valjean had mentioned that using his power on her the first time felt like he was singing to a wall.

“I don’t know, but it felt like the wall that had been there before was still there. Minds aren’t supposed to be blocked off. Even the ones from people with mental problems or drug addicts aren’t like this.” He takes a moment to think on how to best explain what had happened. “The closest thing I could relate it to would be that the entrance to her mind was a door, and I could only fit so much of my power into it before her mind couldn’t take it anymore.”

He rubs a hand to his temple before speaking again. “Her mind is seriously blocked.”

Despite not really understanding what the two of you are talking about, when you look behind you to check on how the other mutant’s doing, you find that she doesn’t look to pleased about being talked about and ignored.

“Why are you talking about me? It’s… actually really rude.” And to think that not too long ago she was slurring her speech and acting like she didn't have a clue what was going on. Now she’s speaking for herself.

“No.” Valjean tries to save face— well, his face at least. “We were just trying to figure out what happened to you before we found you.”

“Oh…” She says, eyes on the water sloshing past her feet. “The doctors came today… said they were going to take me outside.” The words are slow and unsure, and there’s a pause as she takes a moment to think. “I think they gave me another shot before I went… and then I—“ Her voice cracks as her mind must be trying to fill in for information that isn't there before she completely stops, staring downwards with an increasingly fretful look in her eyes.

“It’s okay if you don’t remember.” You’re quick to reassure her, spare hand on her shoulder. Despite the way your gut churns from her words, you’d rather not let her melt down if you could help it. “You looked pretty banged up when we found you, so you probably just hit your head.” Not a total lie, you think, given what you had done to her before.

After that, the crystal mutant calms down, and you continue the trek in relative silence, save for the noise of splashing water from your footfalls that echoes through the tunnels.

>(1/?)
>>
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>>4354004

“Lizard.” Valjean says, disrupting the quiet. He’s looking at you from your hold with a very serious look on his face. “Do you think that FutureLabs is brainwashing mutants?” Well crap. You didn’t think that Valjean would come to the conclusion that fast, when you know that he doesn’t have the slightest clue about what’s going on behind FutureLabs’ closed doors. Then again, Valjean has proved himself highly keen in past encounters, not to mention the fact that he has first-hand experience with mind-molding type stuff.

“Hold on.” You say, in lieu of an answer. Up ahead, you can hear the sound of rushing, churning water, and you set your focus on that. “Listening for something.”

Without warning, you pick up the pace, as fast as you can go so that the crystal mutant can still keep up. That’s when you find the bend in the passageway that’s gushing water out of another, grated tunnel, which is long and wide as you are tall, and you easily step through it, giving yourself and Pharos a thorough soaking. “Did we have to go through that?” Is the following complaint, but yes. Yes you did.

From behind, you hear the crackling of skin into stone before the crystal mutant’s also on the other side of the bend. A look at the path ahead, and it seems that the sewer passage has opened up a little more.

“Hey.” You say to the crystal mutant, who seems to have recovered from that lapse. “Can you use your power to run faster?” If she could use her power on her own volition before, then she shouldn't have any trouble using it for a simple task like running.

The crystal mutant obeys without a word, switching to what you deem to be her diamond form, and, in almost no time at all, you make it to where the tunnel completely widens to a large, open space, where there are a number of tunnels to follow, while the ceiling is large and dome-like— quite an open place for a sewer.

>(2/?)
>>
Man I gotta say that what makes the Pharos/Sopor twist good is the fact that the first was presented as a cocky cartoon villain who revealed his power to us in a monologue and had a feud with us and the later was a cold guy who didn't care for you unless you got in his way and his power acted in a different way and we're still trying to figure how it works
>>
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>>4354072

Might've said this before, but I didn't think this quest would make it past the first thread. Was actually going to be a one-off until I got too invested in the storyline and realized that questing involves many, MANY threads.

Also still trying to figure out how I made it this far, and I didn't want the story to end without also doing more with Pharos, cause I've actually been trying to develop a good backstory for him beyond the whole "HURR HURR I HATE HUMIES."
>>
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>>4354065

The tunnel that will take you seaward will be the one where the water’s flowing to, so, as you try to figure out which tunnel that may be, you see a flicker of motion from within one of the passageways, and so does the next one, and the next one, and the one after that— you feel your heart leap into your throat as you realize what’s happening all around you.

Flashlights, too, shine from within the tunnels, the glow of them easily spotted by your keen vision, and it’s not long before they’re also visible to Valjean’s less-powered eyes.

“Lizard—” Valjean’s voice is a hiss. “How did these assholes track us down here?” His gaze shifts to the other mutant. “Was it you?” He accuses the crystal mutant, anger thick in his voice. She looks bewildered by the sudden change in Valjean’s demeanor.

“Uh—I didn’t— I—“ She doesn’t know what to say, but you have a feeling that, whether or not she knew it, it probably was her that was responsible for letting the agents find you. But there’s no crackle of a comm in her ear, nor is there anything else on her arms or anywhere else that any sort of device might be. However, when your eyes trail down to her legs, you find what must be the culprit.

So melded into her outfit, you wouldn’t have noticed it since her feet had been beneath sludgy water the whole time, but there is a little silver band on the end of her pant leg. There’s a little, green light blinking on-and-off, but, like the rest of her leg, that too had also been covered in sludge.

“There’s a tracker on her leg.” You say it so a certain, douchey Crux leader can stop accusing the Crystal mutant, and, without wasting a second, you slash through the band with your claws. Though the tracker is removed, that doesn’t fix your current dilemma of the FutureLabs agents now lurking about the tunnels.

Though they haven’t spotted you yet, you’re pretty sure that any tunnel you enter is going to have gun-toting agents inside of it, and, with the sewer’s lack of space, any shot they take on you will be a hit. Plus, with the tracker, they know you’re in here, so it won’t be long before agents begin to fill this open area too.

>What do you do? (Roll 1d100)
>go back the way you came
>go where the flowing water is
>pick a random tunnel>stay where you are to form a plan and hide, then run for one of the above tunnels (write-in which one)
>stay where you are, hide, and pick off the agents one-by-one
>write-in

In the one pic where the crystal mutant's transforming during her fight with Elise, you can see said tracker on her leg. lolol

>(3/3)
>>
Rolled 22 (1d100)

>>4354097
>go where the flowing water is
F- I mean lizard is fresh
>>
>>4354097
>Grab a rat and tie the tracker to it, then send it down a random tunnel, then go through another.

Must not eat the rat.
>>
>>4354173

Roll the fekkin dice man!!!
>>
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>>4353526

Oh wow I was out all day so I didn't have time to read this, but I have to say it's dope af.

Makes me want to spill my spoilers now, cause I'm weak when it comes to secret keeping, but I'll tell you that you're right about one thing: the crystal mutant was definitely former Crux!!!
>>
>>4354173
roll my dude, we need rolls
>>
>>4354107

>F-

totally relevant right now.
>>
Rolled 67 (1d100)

>>4354097
>>
Rolled 5 (1d100)

>>4354097
>Grab a rat and tie the tracker to it, then send it down a random tunnel, then go through another.

Clever.
>>
Rolled 86 (1d100)

>>4354196
Yeah why not
>>
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>>4354107
>>4354196
>>4354221
>>4354184

The sound of footsteps down every tunnel has you at a loss for which tunnel you should take, but, if there’s an equal amount of agents in each of them, then it would be logical to just take the one that’s most likely to bring you seaward.

You think if you had a rat you could tie the tracker to it and send it down the tunnel. Extending your senses, you manage to find one curled in one of the corners, and, taking the string of your hoodie, you are able to securely attach the tracker to the rat. You send it down a random tunnel in hopes that the agents will follow it there, and you watch it scurry until it is out of sight. If anything, you’ve just diverted a number of the men in the other tunnels quite cleverly, drawing them in the direction opposite of you. However, if they manage to realize what you’ve done, then you’ll need a backup plan, and so you turn to the gemstone mutant with an idea already in mind.

“Crystal.” You start, because in the moment you have nothing else to call her. “You’re going to follow me down the tunnel with your power. Whatever happens, don’t stop using it no matter what. If you do, you’ll get very hurt, and I won’t be able to help you, okay?” She nods, and you think that Crystal understands for the most part.

“Pharos, I’m going to switch you around.” You tell him as you shift him back into the fireman’s carry. “There are going to be agents in any of the tunnels for sure, and, if Crystal is as durable as I think she is, then you have a better chance of surviving if they shoot from behind instead of the front.” You won’t mention that you’re also worrying about her too, but you don’t think that too many agents will be following you guys when they’re too busy following the tracker.

Leaving the domed intersection behind, you head in a dead sprint down the one where the sound of flowing water’s the most prominent, and of course there are agents up ahead, far enough away that they won’t be able to see you coming at the speed you’re moving.

However, you’re sorely mistaken, as you hear the sound of a gun go off not once, but thrice— twice to the legs and once to the stomach.

The unexpected pain in your legs has you falling to the ground, and you land face-first into the murky sewer-water. You feel Valjean’s skull knock against yours, his body going limp in your hold.

>(1/2)
>>
>>4354234

At the sudden turn of events, you feel the cloying haze of instinct slither to the forefront of your mind as it had before, and defiantly you rise to your feet as bones regenerate and repair themselves, the wound on your stomach closing itself over.

The suit up ahead, who had presumably fired the shots is nonplussed by the fact that you’re still standing but still has his gun poised at you, but he cocks his gun again to prepare for another round of bullets. Meanwhile, that buzzing that had been with you before during your fight with Crystal: it has renewed itself in full, and, like the narrow tunnel of this sewer, your mind is hyper-focused on the assailant.

Crystal, frightened from the scene that had just transpired is still standing behind you in her diamond form, not at all sure of what to do. Amid the humming and buzzing, you feel your fish form trying to break free from your skin and push itself to the forefront of your body to replace this half-formed version of yourself, because who else is really going to see besides this lone gunman? But there's also something else in you telling you not to, so, despite the danger standing before you, you stand stock-still as your mind is stuck on what to do.

All the while, you think you hear the gunman trying to say something to you, but, while the voice rings the faintest of bells in your mind, it sounds… muffled.

>What do you do? (Roll 1d100)
>See what this gunman is trying to say (no roll)
>Charge/attack the gunman
>Go back the way you came
>write-in

Last reply of the day. Might close the thread soon.
twitter.com/qmsiren

>(2/2)
>>
Rolled 53 (1d100)

>>4354261
>Charge/attack the gunman
you're going down buddy
>>
>>4354261
>See what this gunman is trying to say
Because I'm betting it's John
>>
Rolled 60 (1d100)

>>4354261
>Charge/attack the gunman
Sorry John. You're going to have to get knocked out. It's for your own safety.
>>
>>4354261
>>See what this gunman is trying to say (no roll)
I dont want to risk our instincts hurting john
>>
>>4354261
>See what this gunman is trying to say

Stall for time.

By talking to family.
>>
Rolled 10 (1d100)

>>4354261
>Charge/attack the gunman

break a leg
>>
Rolled 64 (1d100)

>>4354261
>Charge/attack the gunman
Does no one feel embarrassed about actually fighting squishy, defenseless humans? Because I don't.
>>
OP haz delay. Hope to get something out tonight but got some irl stuff that's hitting.
>>
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Drawfag drop in lieu of update cause I really wanted to post something today.
>>
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>>4355757

Mustn't forget bat-boi
>>
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>>4355767
Who could forget
>>
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>>4356567

Please seek medical help, senpai. No amount of eye-bleach can cure my tainted eyes.
>>
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>>4356595
My condolences
>>
OP is finally writing. Update should be up soon.
>>
>>4354589
>>4354539
>>4354339
>>4354281

>64

“—I said hand over Pharos and Jul—“ He throws his body to the ground, dodging the oncoming foot by a hair’s breadth. The foot embeds itself into the wall, and, as you peel the appendage out, bits of stone and debris fall to the ground.

Pharos is still on your back, arms and legs lolling about, but you still have a steady hold on him as you rush towards the gunman who had gotten back to his feet.

“—care if you’re a mutant—“ Surging forwards, you feel a rush as you close in on your opponent— an opponent with a limited set of options in the enclosed space of the sewer. That last dodge had been a fluke, a result of your legs not having been completely healed. He’s still trying to stall by shouting, but the noise falls on deaf ears. “—he’s killed people—“

Your fist hits him square in the chest, sending him into the wall with a choked, pain gasp, and you find that he’s still not down when you feel another sharp something pierce through your torso. It catches you off-guard, because you didn’t even see the knife— didn’t even see the glint of metal— and somehow it’s worse than the bullet that you had largely ignored, since the weapon has yet to be removed; it scrapes the bullet while also clawing at the rest of your insides, and, as he continues to shout, flecks of reddened spittle fly into your face like the same blood that soaks your sweatshirt.

Of all of the things that FutureLabs could give their agents, it had to be a frEakIngFReaKInGkNIFe—

With violent, frenzied force, you punch the gunman off of you, the blade following with it. Some skin is torn back from how fast the knife had been pulled out, ripping some of your sweatshirt in the process, and you feel the warmth of your own blood soaking into it. Meanwhile, the shouting has stopped completely, as the gunman hasn’t moved to get up.

However, the force of the punch has knocked your assailant’s helmet straight off, revealing a shock of brown hair. It’s stuns you out of your instinct-induced haze enough for you to realize that it’s John who’s lying prone on the ground and covered in blood.

“H-Hah—“ You suck in a large gulp of air, and you feel a thick, nauseated sensation course through you as brown eyes stare into your own. Your free hand clutches your stomach, highly conscious of the regenerating powers that your brother lacks, but, somehow, he’s managed to stay conscious, blood dribbling down his lips from how hard you’d hit him. “—didn’t mean to—“ The words tumble out before you can stop them.

It’s a crappy apology, but there’s really nothing else you can say without giving yourself away. You also weren’t planning to open that can of worms several stories underground while surrounded by gunmen.

>(1/?)
>>
>>4357095

Despite the situation he’s in, John still manages to put on a brave face, and there’s no anger or resentment in his eyes, just calm. With how he’s not getting up, you probably broke something of his, but you’re not sure. He looks like he has something to say, and, because it’s your brother, you’re not going to just leave him without letting him get a last word in.

“I would understand if it were just her.” A motion of the head to where you left Crystal. “But I want to know why you’re trying so hard to defend Pharos, of all people.”

“I’m not.” You tell him, still trying to speak through the instinct that pounds through your skull. “If he goes to FutureLabs,’ it won’t be good. Too many mutants for him there.” That’s the best explanation he’s going to get right now, which reminds you that Crystal’s still waiting. A turn of your head finds that she hasn’t moved since the fight started, and, whether or not it’s because of the brainwashing or because she’s unable to see in the dark, you’re thankful that she did as told.

“Get going then.” John says, and, as you turn back to retrieve Crystal, the sound of his voice causes you to stop in your tracks. When he speaks, his voice is low and murmured, meant for only you to hear. “Before I forget, you should… probably put your face back to how it was before.” A bloodied hand flies to your face, where you feel the smoothness of your fish features instead of the rough, malformed lizard face you’d been wearing.

Quickly, you shift back into the lizard state, but it’s too late. Your instincts had nearly gotten the better of you yet again, and now you have to pay for it.

On the other hand, it’s better that John saw, rather than anyone else. But you still have your doubts because, even though John had outrightly said he doesn’t like working for FutureLabs, you don’t know how committed he is to surviving through this job for yours and Matt’s sakes.

“What’s with that look? I’m the one who got beaten up.” He jokes. “Seriously, I’m not going to tell. My job sucks, and, even though I don’t know what your group has planned, I’d like you guys to take them down sooner rather than later. Now get out of here.” That’s enough for you to snap out of it and turn back for Crystal once more.

There’s perturbation in her eyes at the sight of you covered in blood. You know you should’ve ended the fight sooner; but you weren’t expecting John to be there, nor were you expecting him to be touting a knife on his person— a knife that had likely been designed for cutting through tough mutants such as yourself. You’d be tempted to bring it back as another weapon for Matt to use—and he’d probably love it— but you don’t see it lying around anywhere.

>(2/?)
>>
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>>4357100

It’s not even thirty seconds after you pass John when there’s a clicking of yet another gun— a sniper rifle to be precise— and there’s a wild grin on the gun owner’s face he aims it directly at your head. “Hand over Pharos and Julia, or I’m gonna bloody no-scope you, right here, right now…” He threatens you, but then he stops to pause in thought as he considers something else. “You probably won’t die since you didn’t die from the dipshit’s gunshots, but it’ll hurt like a bitch, that’s for sure.”

“Not a chance.” You hiss out, and, at that, Clyde’s grin gets wider.

“Yeah, I think a gun’s kind of easy for you— too easy, in fact— so let’s kick things up a notch while we’re down here.” Though he doesn’t try to shoot you, the gun isn’t removed from your head, and you’re not sure how fast Clyde will react if you move; so you don’t, because you don’t want to risk Valjean nor Julia.

“Julia.” The Australian starts, craning his neck to where she’s standing behind you. “Julia. I want you to look at me. Look at me and listen.” Clyde’s words are slow and deliberate, and her face snaps up to meet his. “We shall meet in the place where there’s no—“

He doesn’t even finish the sentence, as John has him in a tackle. Hands are placed firmly over his mouth, a foot kicking the rifle that had fallen out of his reach, and, from beneath his glasses, you can see that John’s eyes are blazing. “What the hell, Clyde?! Are you trying to get us all killed?!” The question echoes throughout the whole tunnel, and there’s some muffled talking before John reluctantly lifts his hand from Clyde’s mouth, ready to gag him again in an instant.

“Eh, you were going to die as a Level E Personnel member anyways, and, by the looks of it, Miss Ponytail was goin’ to finish the job before I stepped in.” Clyde says flippantly. “Best to speed things up for the both of you, and the good doctor gave me the go-ahead to do it if things got too spotty.”

“Don’t you care about yourself?” John is in disbelief.

“Yeah, but I also hate losin.' I’m a really sore loser when it comes down to it, Johnny-boy, and I don’t wanna be a loser like certain people here…” The grip around Clyde tightens threateningly. “You know I don’t believe you were the guy who leaked the key codes cause you’re too much of a lug, but you’re definitely a sympathizer for the freaks. Ya don’t even see Braun gettin’ into that shit, and he’s got a bloody sibling behind bars!” More laughter fills the sewers. “He’s one hell of a dick, I’ll give him that much. Rumor has it that he turned him in himself.”

“That’s not Eddie.” John doesn’t want to acknowledge the possibility, and the air around Clyde only becomes more smug.

>(3/?)
>>
>>4357114

“Don’t delude yourself, asshole. Eddie’s as lost of a cause as the rest of us.” The sniper tells him. “You, on the other hand, always take the moral high ground and such so you can feel good about yourself at the end of the day, but you’re no more complicit in the things the doctor’s done than anyone else who steps foot into the labs. You think that just because you’re not the one laying down the knife you're innocent?” At the cutting question, you see John’s grip on Clyde slacken, and that’s enough for him to knock into his ribs with an elbow.

Quicker than Clyde can reach for any of the guns on his holster, your scaled fist meets his face, and the sniper falls to the ground in a heap. That was for the stuff he said to John.

You’re surprised that John's up after what you put him through, but adrenaline does amazing things when you're in a pinch. Nonetheless, you’re thankful, because who knows what would’ve happened if he hadn’t stopped Clyde from saying what was probably some sort of brainwashing kill-phrase.

Now would be the perfect time to run, because your time spent fighting John had drawn the attention of Clyde, and who knows what else is waiting for you at the end of the tunnel?

>What do you do now?
>Book it! Get out now!
>Ask John if he’s going to be okay.
>Ask John if there’s anyone else waiting for you outside the tunnel.
>Ask John if they have any other way to track Julia.
>Ask what happens if you say those words.
>write-in

>(4/4)
>>
>>4357121
>Ask John if he’s going to be okay.
>Ask John if there’s anyone else waiting for you outside the tunnel.
>Ask John if they have any other way to track Julia.
>Ask what happens if you say those words.

All the questions!
>>
>>4357121
>Ask John if there’s anyone else waiting for you outside the tunnel.
>Ask John if they have any other way to track Julia.
Just the essential
>>
>>4357114
I'm honestly just reeling from this vibe check
>>
>>4357121
>>Ask John if he’s going to be okay.
>>Ask John if there’s anyone else waiting for you outside the tunnel.
>>Ask John if they have any other way to track Julia.
>>
>>4357122
>>4357143
>>4357212

“Are you sure you’re going to be alright?” That is your first question to John before you ask him anything else.

“Yeah. Once you’re gone, I’m going to sit back, play dead, and wait for the other guys to find me.” There’s a smirk on his face as he says this. “You wouldn’t mind me saying that you knocked me out, would you?” “Not at all.” And, if anyone wants to disprove it, the indents in the tunnel and destroyed helmet are ample evidence for John’s lie.

“Anyways,” You say, remembering one of the other questions on your mind. “How many guys are waiting outside?”

John puts a hand to his chin as he tries to remember the exact number of guys that had been with him. “You have two or three more guys waiting outside I think, but it should be easy for you cause you took me out first.” The smirk that had been on his face had widened into a trollish grin, and, when he realizes that the joke’s fallen flat, he stops, probably realizing that you feel quite guilty for hurting him.

Still, you have questions that you need to ask him before you leave, questions that you’re certain he can answer.

“Do you have any other way of tracking Julia?” You think that’s a fitting name for the gemstone mutant.

“No. We didn’t think that there’d be any third parties after Pharos, so we didn’t bother to anything other than the tracker. We didn’t even think you guys would come because of the video they’d briefed us with.” What video? “The one from Kastan Hospital. That was you, right?”

“Yes.” There’s no point in lying about that.

“Watched the whole thing by the way. That was pretty badass.” That’s the third “foul” thing John’s said in the last day. You think he’s set a record for himself. “By the way, I’m sorry for stabbing you.” Your eye is drawn to his hand that is completely red with your blood, not one inch of his hand being spared from it. “That was the only thing I could think of doing, because you really weren’t responding to me, and I was kind of scared.” Knowing John, you think that fear was less for himself and more towards the chance that he wouldn’t be returning to you or Matt at the end of the day.

>(1/2)
>>
>>4357245

>>4357245

“What do you have to apologize for? I’m the one who beat you up, and I’m already healed from it.” You don’t want to hear any more of John’s apologies. Your brother’s too kind for his own good.

“What about the bullet?” He’s referring to the piece of metal still lodged in your gut.

“I’ll be fine. I have someone for that.” You wave him off.

“A doctor?” John’s voice sounds a little hopeful.

“No. Bludgeon.” And since Matt’s codename has never been heard on television, your older brother is thoroughly confused. “The bat guy.”

“Oh.” Then John’s face falls as he realizes the implications of this. “Wait. Isn’t he like your age or something? He’s probably not even first-aid certified, is he, much less able to remove a bullet from a place where there are lots of important internal organs.” Matt is, but you’re not going to share that detail.

“We did it before.” You tell him, attempting to dispel his worries. “I had to get it pulled from my femoral artery. I’m pretty sure the stomach and intestines are less fatal.” That doesn’t help your case in the least, because, at that, the look on John’s face is pale and disproving.

“No. You can’t just take a scalpel to your stomach and hope for the best, or even your arteries.” His big brother mode is making an appearance. “That’s not… acceptable. At all.”

“I think I’ve proved that I’m pretty hard to kill.” You cross your arms, but you’re also kind of amused at his worry for you, even though he doesn’t know it’s you.

John's shoulders slump, relenting at the argument, but, since he still carries the same stubbornness in his veins as you, he doesn’t look quite ready to give just yet. His eyes ares still trained to where both the knife and bullet were, and he purses his lips in thought.

You can tell that there’s something on John's mind, something bothering him.

Finally, after a very long moment, he returns his focus to you and asks: “Would you like me to remove the bullet for you?”

>”No. I’ll be fine. I gotta get going so I can get these guys to safety. Thanks though.”
>”Yes, but please make it quick.”
>write-in

>(2/2)
>>
>>4357250

Last reply of the day. We close the thread tomorrow!!!
>>
>>4357250
>”Yes, but please make it quick.”
>>
>>4357250
Is there even enough time for that? How have we had enough time for this conversation?
>write-in
>>"What, right now?"
>>
>>4357250
>”No. I’ll be fine. I gotta get going so I can get these guys to safety. Thanks though.”
We gotta go
Maybe we can ask him to do it later

2nd choice is to support >>4357299
>>
>>4357250
>>”No. I’ll be fine. I gotta get going so I can get these guys to safety. Thanks though.”
"You offer first aid to every girl you stab or is it just me?"
Tease him a bit.
>>
>>4357321
>>4357299

Ummm... op had a rabies vaccine yesterday... Some marbles might’ve been lost along the way.

Glad I had like 85% of the first update done before that.
>>
>how had we enough time for this convo?
>>4357736
This is why my time-perception stat got skewed.
>>
>>4357739
That's one hell of a rat, it's kind of a waste not having it on the team.
>>
>>4357748

It wasn’t a rat.

It was a bat.
>>
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>>4357730
"Get the bullet out, John"
>>
>>4357250
>”Yes, but please make it quick.”

Lead poisoning is no joke
>>
>>4357873
>>4357294
>>4357817

“Yes, but please make it quick.” Since you’ve gotten your powers, there are a lot of things you’ve become immune to. Lead poisoning, however, is something you’re not sure about, which is why you don’t want a piece of lead in your torso for any longer than it has to be there.

There’s a small platform of concrete that’s right next to where another pipe is, where it’s slowly leaking out water. However, the rest of the area is mostly dry, so it looks like a great place to perform an impromptu bullet-removal operation.

While John works, you’ll have Julia hold Valjean, who’s still unconscious. Handing him off to her, you see that there’s a gun still in his holster, which you hadn’t noticed since it was on the side that wasn’t touching you as you carried him. You don’t hesitate to remove it from the other mutant, and then you head back to where John’s waiting for you with a pocket-sized bottle of antiseptic and flashlight.

“I know you’ve probably seen your fair share of blood, but would you mind closing your eyes?” John asks as you lay yourself down on the concrete, a hand against the back of his head. “Nothing personal, but it’s kind of weird if I’m cutting into someone and they’re watching me.” Once you close your eyes, he sets to prepping the area where the bullet struck with antiseptic, and, soon, scalpel slices through scale with ease.

Although you don’t think he’s ever done anything of the sorts while being a lab technician, John had majored in bio-chemistry, meaning that, out of any of your siblings, he definitely has the most medical know-how. You think he would’ve been a good doctor if he had taken that route, but he had instead taken a master’s in some sort of quantum science.

Come to think of it, that might have been John’s rebellious phase, because you remember your parents having wanted him to become a doctor. However, for as much as John loves to learn, you think that so much schooling on top of the first four years would be absolutely grueling for him, and he’d been young when he started college, even younger than you had been.

The bullet comes next, out with a pair of what feels to you like medical pincers. As soon as it’s gone, your skin is already knitting itself back together, and John stands back up, finished with the job. “I’m not going to bother with the sutures, cause your regeneration’s already doing the work for you, but be sure to wash off when you get back home. I don’t think I need to tell you how many diseases live down in the sewers.”

“Yeah, this place is pretty crappy.” You respond, jumping at the opportunity for the joke because it’s just too good. You hope that John’s not too off-put by the crass pun, but the snort of laughter from beside you tells you he’s not. “Can I open my eyes yet?”

>(1/?)
>>
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>>4358576

“By the way, thanks for that.” You tell John. "You offer first aid to every girl you stab or is it just me?"

“Well, I like helping people. Even when I started working for the bad guys, I never stopped.” Speaking of which, he probably won’t get home until late if he needs treatment, which you think he will. If that’s the case, they’ll probably take John back to FutureLabs, because, even though they’re the bad guys, they have the best treatment on hand.

“But you should go.” You’re reminded you of the thing you should’ve already done. “And I gotta start playing dead now. Make it look like I fought the good fight.” John still needs his alibi for when the agents find him and Clyde.

“Julia.” You call to the crystalline mutant, where she’s standing in her diamond form with Valjean still in her arms. “Come on.” A motion with your hands has her right next to you, and, when you run, she follows.

See you later, John.

The remaining length of sewer tunnel is straight with a straight shot forwards with no more unexpected twists and turns, which is why it’s easy to spot the next gunman who’s not too far ahead. Back turned to you and your party, there’s the glow of his phone against the tunnel’s ceiling, and you can clearly hear that he’s playing one of those games where you have to pay a ton of money for virtual perks.

He had probably assumed that John and Clyde had won, so he had thought he could take out his phone while waiting for them to back the war-trophies (in other words, your bodies).

This is a golden opportunity if there ever was one, you think, and, with a quick, controlled strike, the agent’s out cold, phone flung into the sewage. One or two of them left, then all you need to do is get to the ocean.

>Roll 1d100
>Tag-team them with Julia
>Yeet them yourself
>Be stealthy. No yeeting. Head to straight to the water.
>write-in

>(2/2)
>>
>>4358584
>>Be stealthy. No yeeting. Head to straight to the water

Don't want to make them more worried/threatened.
>>
>>4358584
>Be stealthy. No yeeting. Head to straight to the water.

We train combat all the time, it is time to train our sneak
>>
Rolled 80 (1d100)

>>4358584
>>4358628
I only forgot my roll because other anon also forgot
>>
Rolled 22 (1d100)

>>4358584
>Be stealthy. No yeeting. Head to straight to the water.
Also remember the basics in cqc
>>
Rolled 61 (1d100)

>>4358584
>Be stealthy. No yeeting. Head to straight to the water.
Kinda curious if/how we're gonna drag julia and pharos behind us in the water
>>
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>>4358726

also frig I wanted to be post 420. Too slow, amirite?
>>
>>4358745
Maybe next time
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>>4358726
>>4358644
>>4358633
>>4358628
>>4358585

As you near the end of the tunnel, you slow down, keeping your senses peeled. Since you’ve yet to find any more agents, save for the one who’d let his guard down, you assume that they’re waiting for you outside the sewers, and, since you don’t want to catch anyone else’s attention, you think that the best option would be to go straight to the bay from the exit.

The water’s flowing much harder than it was before, where the water’s visibly gushing from the multitude of pipes that are connected, coalescing into a sizable waterfall. An idea instantly comes to mind— you’ll just ride the waterfall to the bottom, sink down so that the agents can’t see you, and then come back up for air when you’re far enough away.

However, this plan of yours is dependent on all of your participants being awake, not just you and Julia. You purse your lips, trying to think of a way around this setback. Maybe this plan isn’t as simple as you thought.

You’re just going to have to cross out phase two and three of your plan and be fast, because that’s really the best you can do.

“Give me Pharos.” You say to Julia, because you’re the one who’s going to be keeping his head above the water since he’s not regaining consciousness, and she hands him back without a word, letting go of her diamond form right after. You’re going to be dragging her too during your joyswim, which also kind of sucks. Briefly, you consider calling Bernard, but, since you don’t have a precise location for him, there’s nothing he can really do.

Waterfall time it is then. You’ll just need to tell Julia so she knows what to do.

“Julia, we’re going to go into the water, and you’re going to hold onto me while I swim you to shore.” Julia gives you a look at that. Not a blank, brainwashed look, but another look that says 'I don’t like this.’

“But my hair.” What? You don’t have any words. Of all of the things she could be worried about, it’s her hair?!

“If we don’t, you won’t be able to enjoy your hair anymore.” You argue, forgetting for an instant that you are talking to a brainwashed individual.

“I still don’t want to.” You can’t think of anything else to say, because she’s acting like a petulant kid— a petulant kid with a vanity kick-- but if Julia doesn’t cut it out, you’ll drag her to the water yourself.

“I can make her do it if you’d like.” Valjean interrupts from your fireman’s carry. How long had he been awake?

“No.” As appealing is that option is, you don’t want Julia to suffer anymore brain-damage than she already has. “We still don’t know the extent of her brainwashing, so hold off on that.”

>(1/?)
>>
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>>4358794

“Fine. I’ll do it the normal way then.” He pauses to turn to the crystalline mutant. “Julia. I know you don’t like what we’re about to do, but, if we make it through this, I will personally take you to get your hair done. Sound good?” Barely scraping by on his barista salary, you know that Valjean’s lying through his teeth, but Julia’s transfixed on every word, nodding at him with nothing but trust in those vivid blue eyes of hers.

Crap. You actually feel bad for her, and you make a mental note to take her out for her hair if Valjean doesn’t. “Alright then, let’s get soaked.”

Now that Valjean’s awake, you can effectively drag both him and Julia, but how? Your mind flits to your sweatshirt, which is in tatters— you could use that to take your passengers to shore— but you also don’t want it to rip midway through, so that’s a nope.

“Pharos, give me your sweatshirt.” You start. “I’m going to use it to drag you two back to shore.”

“Take it.” He lets you put it on the ground so he can remove it, and, although he looks like he doesn’t want to give it up, he hands it to you anyways. “It’s covered in sewage, so I can’t use it anymore.”

After you take the sweatshirt, you take a minute to explain your plan, which no one argues with because you’re basically everyone’s way out.

“Hold your breaths when we hit the water, and try not to make too big of a splash, cause I think there are still gunmen out there.” You make sure to tell Valjean and Jewel as you near the waterfall “On my count...“ You begin, so that everyone that’s not built for swimming is as ready as you are. “One, two, three, GO!”

Leaping into the rushing water, your group is shot forwards, and, once you hit the water, you let yourselves fall as far down as you can possibly go. Once you stop and you’re no longer sinking but floating underwater, you grab a tight hold of Julia’s arm, pushing your legs forwards until you think you’re far enough away.

Nothing had happened, and, stealing a glance behind you, you find that the sewage pipe is far behind you, the distant shadows of agents standing on top of it. Now you can take a moment so everyone can take hold of the sweatshirt— you’ll grab the hood, while Valjean and Julia take the arms and torso.

Following the outline of city lights to the area where Matt and Bernard are waiting, you revel in the water’s embrace. You fought some of the most troublesome members of the task force and won, and, though you didn’t go completely unscathed, you had been able to retrieve Pharos successfully, along with Julia. Keeping your head above the water, the waves bob you up and down as you drag your passengers along. Though your battle with FutureLabs is not over yet, you succeeded tonight…

>(2/2)


That's the end of the thread! Hope you all had a great time-- thanks for playing!!
>>
>>4358804
waiting warmly for the new one tomorrow
>>
>>4358833

Hopefully I can get one up by Sat/Sunday cause my week’s jam-packed with random irl shit,but we also haven’t seen what’s been happening on Matt’s and Bernard’s end. We’ll get into that next thread.
>>
>>4358844
Ooh a diversion from the first second person perspective
>>
>>4358895
Also John is now a time dilation mutant don't change my mind
>>
>>4358907

couldn’t resist a perfectly exploitable meme opportunity
>>
>>4358804
Thanks for running!



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