A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #391
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    [Lunch Time]

    Valerie laughs. "Don't worry, but you'd have to be sworn to secrecy. I have to assume it's strictly enforced, though..." She taps her chin with consideration. "But are you interested in cooking? It's pretty fun, honestly, and home made food is always nice to have."

  2. - Top - End - #392
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    Lunch Time

    "I'll admit I'm not sure I can trust myself to do it frequently, but it is something I have a bit of interest in yeah." Leis raises an eyebrow, curious where Valerie's going with this.
    Avatar by Gulaghar, thanks so much!

    "Are we living a life that is safe from harm? Of course not, we never are. But that's not the right question. The question is: are we living a life that is worth the harm?"
    ~Welcome to Night Vale

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    Quote Originally Posted by SliiArhem
    My headcanon is that she walked into a fairy circle and the fae took her sense of disgression.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gullara
    First of all, all Arkh characters are subject to some babification.

  3. - Top - End - #393
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    [Lunch Time]

    "Oh, I just thought you sounded interested is all." Valerie chuckles. "But maybe I could give you a few pointers? If you're interested, that is."

  4. - Top - End - #394
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    [Lunch Time]

    "Oh, sure, I'd love that!" The tiefling gives her an embarrassed little smile. "Just because I'm not sure I'd get much use of a hobby, doesn't mean I wouldn't have fun learning. If I let that restrict me, I'd probably never started learning magic in the first place."
    Last edited by Arkhosia; 2021-06-10 at 11:13 PM.
    Avatar by Gulaghar, thanks so much!

    "Are we living a life that is safe from harm? Of course not, we never are. But that's not the right question. The question is: are we living a life that is worth the harm?"
    ~Welcome to Night Vale

    Spoiler: Quotes from Friends <3
    Show
    Quote Originally Posted by SliiArhem
    My headcanon is that she walked into a fairy circle and the fae took her sense of disgression.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gullara
    First of all, all Arkh characters are subject to some babification.

  5. - Top - End - #395
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "Well, here we are," Olvisin says as she leads Rose into the lobby of the main MERC office. "Bit cold up here, but I think the boss likes it this way. He's from Dragonbone... well, that doesn't tell you anything, but trust me when I said it's really cold down there too."
    My FFRP characters. Avatar by Ashen Lilies. Sigatars by Ashen Lilies, Gulaghar and Purple Eagle.
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  6. - Top - End - #396
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    Rose shivers as they enter the lobby. She was already in a bad mood due to recent events; she and the other members of ARC had a bit of a falling out, and were now in the process of being scattered across the Nexus. She'd come to Olvisin for work, recalling the goblin's employment with MERC and deciding it was better than moping around on a street corner.

    All of that was well before she was escorted into what was apparently Siberia in building form. "H-holy hell... h-how can anyone l-LIKE this?!" She grumbles, rubbing her forearms to try to keep the blood flowing in them. A t-shirt and jeans really seemed like inadequate clothing for this palce, she thought. Next time she visited the office, she wasn't going to bring anything short of a parka.
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  7. - Top - End - #397
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "I don't know. I guess if you're born under a glacier... but I shouldn't say that about the boss when we're finally here."

    The inside of the office, it should be noted, is perfectly warm. It's the outside that's cold. The lobby is full of a wide variety of people of all species and shapes, presumably mercenaries and adventurers. Olvisin, however, seems to pick someone out and stride toward her with purpose. Rose will have noted by now that she's got a lot of momentum to her once she picked out a direction.

    "That's my sister, Zaalmin." She waves to the goblin woman she'd noticed. There's not much family resemblance there. Zaalmin shares Olvisin's dark grey skin tone and yellow eyes (though hers are much darker, almost orange), but she's much slimmer and her hair is kept in a short pixie cut. She's wearing what looks like overalls under a long coat, both filled with tools and parts. "This is Rose, a new candidate. She wants to be a full member, so we need to find her someone in charge to talk to."

    "Hi Rose," Zaalmin says, craning her neck to look up at her. "I think the boss should be available. He went through here not long ago."
    Last edited by Morty; 2021-06-13 at 07:28 AM.
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  8. - Top - End - #398
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    Rose sighs as they move in and tries to put on a happy face. This was not the time to be broadcasting any doubts. Happy thoughts, Verdoyant. Happy thoughts. She gives the goblin a small smile, which she does her best to make look natural. "Hi, miss Zaalmin." She replies, extending her hand in greeting. She liked this woman already; Zaalmin looked something like Rose herself would if she were a goblin, and her wardrobe resembled Vlad's. It was a totally superficial resemblance, but reassuring nonetheless.

    With that, her smile becomes a little more sincere.
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  9. - Top - End - #399
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    Zaalmin reaches up to shake Rose's hand.

    "Alright, I'll call the boss and see if he's available."

    She puts what looks like a comm-bead into her large ear and presses it.

    "Boss? This is Zaalmin Zuulit-Obeleck. My sister brought someone in who wants to become a member." A pause as someone speaks on the other side. "The same one, yes. We're in the main lobby." She takes the finger off the comm bead. "He'll be here shortly. Just don't be alarmed if you see any large animals."

    "You're no fun. I wanted to see how she'd react."

    Soon enough, another goblin enters the busy lobby, followed by a large, grey wolf with lighter, silvery streaks across its fur. He differs from the two sisters with his dark brown skin color, pale red eyes and longer ears.

    "You would be the new candidate, I presume." He looks up at Rose as the two other goblins... don't quite stand to attention but straighten up. The wolf sits down obediently behind him. "I'm Dipsnig Razortooth, the CEO here."
    Last edited by Morty; 2021-06-13 at 07:57 AM.
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  10. - Top - End - #400
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    Well, this was it. This was her new boss, potentially. Time to make a good first impression, and to make it count.

    She gives him a small smile, maintaining a respectful distance, hands behind her back, gently rocking back and forth on her feet. She wanted to give the impression that she already liked him, but found him slightly intimidating; she hoped he would either take it as a compliment or a prompt to be gentle, both of which worked in her favor.

    "I'm Rose. Rose Marie Verdoyant." Rose replies, putting extra emphasis on her very French surname. "Olvisin tells me you might have work for someone like me."
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  11. - Top - End - #401
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "That depends on what exactly you can offer. Follow me to one of our meeting rooms. You two come too. I might need a second opinion." Thus far, Dipsnig seems to be a picture of professionalism, displaying little about what he might think about Rose and his first impression of her. He turns around and leads the way out of the lobby, into a side-corridor and an unused meeting room. He takes a seat on one of the chairs; they seem to notably come in various sizes. Olvisin and Zaalmin take seats too, while the wolf lies down. "What skills do you have that you want to employ at MERC?"
    Last edited by Morty; 2021-06-13 at 09:31 AM.
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  12. - Top - End - #402
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    For her part, Rose decided to keep standing. Actually sitting at the table was really going to hurt her ability to use body language, which would be shooting herself in the foot for this job. Besides, Dipsnig's lack of an emotional response told her that he was looking at this interview as a professional, first and foremost. For her, that had a paradoxical effect; this would go best for her if she could prove she could manipulate people emotionally, which in turn would work best if she could prove she could get under his skin... which stoicism made it difficult for her to do, which would probably be the point, now that she thought about it.

    Fortunately, while Dipsnig himself didn't have any tells so far, he'd brought in three other people who knew him reasonably well. She could gauge him based on them, if she was careful.

    "Well..." she begins, shuffling back and forth to keep up the "nervous shy girl" act, "I used to work for an intelligence agency. Fact-finding mostly... maybe a pinch of counterintelligence." She clears her throat and steals a glance at Olvisin and Zaalmin, trying to gauge what they expected their boss to say about that.
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  13. - Top - End - #403
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    Olvisin and Zaalmin seem, if anything, somewhat nervous and uncertain themselves. They don't really know Dipsnig that well and helping the boss out with an interview isn't something they're used to. Dipsnig, on his part, seems to be interested. This isn't the first person with such skills he's interviewed, nor will it be the last. Rose might realize he knows what she's doing. Does he approve? It's hard to say. Goblin expressions and body language are a lot like humans', but not quite. It seems their ears do a lot of the work.

    "What kind of targets have you employed your skills on? Were they here or in your homeworld?" he asks.
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  14. - Top - End - #404
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "Um... well, neither, really." Rose replies. "I mean, technically... my homeworld, I guess. I suppose your question is really more about whether I have any experience in the Nexus proper, yeah?" No points for guessing that, but clearing up what information Dipsing was looking for would help make sure she gave a relevant answer. "If so, the answer is no, I do not. I haven't been here very long. As for who I tended to target... pretty much anyone, really. Ranging from grunts to billionaires. It depended on the month."
    Last edited by Ironsmith; 2021-06-13 at 02:59 PM.
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  15. - Top - End - #405
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arkhosia View Post
    [Lunch Time]

    "Oh, sure, I'd love that!" The tiefling gives her an embarrassed little smile. "Just because I'm not sure I'd get much use of a hobby, doesn't mean I wouldn't have fun learning. If I let that restrict me, I'd probably never started learning magic in the first place."
    [Lunch Time]

    "I dunno, maybe you'll get more out of it than you think. Having a home cooked meal once in a while is nice." Valerie navigates over to a table and takes a seat. "But I guess it's more fun when you can share it."

  16. - Top - End - #406
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "Experience in the Nexus is easier to verify," Dipsnig explains. "I know that 'homeworld' is a flexible term."

    "I saw her shuttle, uh... land near Trog's, boss. She's new here alright." Olvisin decides to omit the method of landing.

    "Not exactly an uncommon situation. Alright. Tell me about one of your jobs, that you think would demonstrate what you bring to us," Dipsnig says, seeming to take all the information in carefully.
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  17. - Top - End - #407
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    Rose taps a finger against her chin in thought. "Hm... okay. One of my first assignments was to get a copy of the security software for a line of androids that were due to be released about a month from then. In order to do that, I got in touch with one of the programmers, set him up with a string of dates so he wouldn't question it when I showed up at his home. I borrowed his security credentials and downloaded a copy of the software, broke up with him a week later." She was giving him a very sanitized version of events, but given the mood of the interview this far, she didn't think he wanted all the risque details.

    ---

    [New Contract - Caravan]

    Job Description: A caravan of armored beastmen and mysterious cloaked men has appeared in the wastelands Outside. Tracking their heading and origin puts them on-course to be responsible for a string of recent disappearances, now presumed to be abductions. A concerned citizen suspects them to be a slaver brigade and wants someone to investigate.
    Contract Type: MERC Licensed Contract.
    Hired by: Anonymous benefactor (Ironsmith)
    Target: Strigoi Caravan (Ironsmith)
    Payment: 5,000 gold coins to know the nature of the caravan, with an additional 15,000 to scatter them if they turn out to be hostile. Expenses associated with this venture are also covered by the contract holder, within reason.

    (Pending approval, obviously.)
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  18. - Top - End - #408
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    Olvisin has heard Rose's explanation before, so this doesn't come as a surprise. Zaalmin does seem a bit taken aback by the callousness of the plan. Dipsnig, however, just nods.

    "A fairly classic operation, I see," he comments. "And a successful one. In our line of work, that's what counts. Do you have skills and experience in more direct espionage and combat?"
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  19. - Top - End - #409
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "Not especially. I can defend myself if the situation calls for it; I have basic marksmanship and martial arts training, but don't often need to apply them." Rose considers this something of a humble brag; it's a testament to her abilities that most people are unaware she's an enemy or unwilling to come to blows if they do know. "Direct espionage is another story. It's not my forte, but I've done my share of burglaries."
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  20. - Top - End - #410
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    Dipsnig nods.

    "Sensible enough. Now, the fact that your previous employment was outside the Nexus, it is difficult for us to verify. But there's another way to prove yourself. You can perform a task for us that will test your abilities. There's also a background check, for security purposes." He looks to Olvisin. "Which promises to be a brief one, if you indeed landed in Trog's days ago. But we do need to do it." He taps a crystal-studded bracer on his left wrist, which brings up a holographic display. "I don't know if we have a suitable job now... but you could always gather some information from our enemies in Skyside."
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  21. - Top - End - #411
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    Skyside?

    Skyside?!

    Oh, brother.

    She didn't know very much about the place, but she already had three good reasons to want to steer clear of it. First, Klaus was already there, and she'd had enough of him to last a lifetime. Second, there were slavers up there, and they were the exact worst kind of people for her to try to handle, just above actual wild animals. And third, she just straight-up hated heights.

    But, a job is a job. And if this is what it would take to prove to Dipsnig she had what it took to be a member of MERC, then

    "Consider it done."
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  22. - Top - End - #412
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "There's a job there named... The Black Abyss Auto Body Shop." Dipsnig looks at his holographic display as if expecting the name to spontaneously start making sense. "It opened up in Skyside. There's something off about it and we don't know if it's connected to KABAL. Try to find out if that's the case, who the owner is and whether they're a concern to us or someone else. This is a test, so no need to probe too deeply or get into trouble. Just bring me some dependable and actionable information."
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  23. - Top - End - #413
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "Sounds simple enough." Rose replies. "What info do we already have? Address, number of staff, anything like that?"

    Probably not. That was what she was here to do. But, if they did have anything, it'd make her job a little easier.
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  24. - Top - End - #414
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "We head rumors of necromancy." Dipsnig pauses as he remembers that Rose seems to come from a world without much if any magic. "That means magic of messing around with life and death. There seems to be one proprietor and a number of employees. The shop is located in the district of Thunderhead."
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  25. - Top - End - #415
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "...Well, if that's a thing here, I guess I'd better study up." Rose says. "It'll be much easier to prove or disprove they're doing something weird with bodies if I know what to look for. Other than said bodies, I mean. Do you guys have any reading material on the subject?"

    She decides not to linger on the possibility that she might have to seduce a necromancer before this was all over. That was not a particularly pleasant prospect.
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  26. - Top - End - #416
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "Our resident occultist, Astrana Tyamer, should have some basic reading on the subject," Dipsnig says. "Enough to give you a general idea." Hopefully Rose is used to the Nexus enough by now that a tiefling won't surprise her much. If not, well, she will be. "Head to her study downstairs. Do you have any further questions before you set out?"
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  27. - Top - End - #417
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    [Main Office - New Arrivals]

    "Nope. I think that'll do it." Rose gives Dipsnig a smile. "I'll be back with the information you want before you can say 'fuzzy pickles'." She turns to leave, giving him, Olvisin, and Zaalmin a playful wave as she goes; it never hurt to have some consistent branding.

    As soon as she's out, she heads straight to Astrana's study.
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  28. - Top - End - #418
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Shadowcaller's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Avatar by Gulaghar

    Default Re: MERC XIX: Toss a Coin to your Goblin

    [Astrana's Office - New Arrivals]

    The office is strangely located in the basement of the head office. It's just by the stairs however so it isn't particularly difficult to find. The door is also open so Rose can just step inside if she wants.

    Looking up from a book is a red-skinned woman with black horns. "Hello, may I help you, miss?" She asks as she gets up from her seat. She's dressed in a black business suit and gives Rose a curious look as she positions herself in front of her desk.

  29. - Top - End - #419
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Ironsmith's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    US
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: MERC XIX: Toss a Coin to your Goblin

    [Astrana's Office]

    "Ah, yeah, actually." Rose says, seeming slightly intimidated at walking into a room that was apparently owned by an actual demon. "The boss sent me. He said you'd be able to show me a thing or two about necromancy? Research for a mission, see." She stayed back a distance, looking the other woman up and down, a slightly incredulous look on her face, as though she can't believe what she's seeing.
    Who're you? ...Don't matter.

    Want some rye? 'Course ya do!


    Here's to us.
    Who's like us?
    Damn few,
    and they're aaall dead.


    *gushes unintelligibly over our cat, Sunshine*

    [Nexus characters, grouped by setting:
    Ouroboros: here
    Maesda: here
    ]

  30. - Top - End - #420
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Shadowcaller's Avatar

    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Avatar by Gulaghar

    Default Re: MERC XIX: Toss a Coin to your Goblin

    [Astrana's Office]

    Astrana's eyebrow raise, clearly seeing Rose's hesitation reaction to her. "I'm a tiefling, miss." She explains with a small smile. "Might look intimidating, but we're really just humans with some extra features." Her tail bends forward as to display it to Rose.
    The warlock smiles again, hoping to defuse the situation before moving on to what Rose came here for. "But necromancy you say? Do you actually need to learn it for this mission? It really shouldn't be required for your first job here."

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