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Military Mage Quest #5 (Previously Military...
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Previously on Military Mage: You, Matsushita Miyako, mage of the Interdimensional Mage's Peacekeeping Alliance (IMPA), were recently informed that war was declared against the Transdimensional Imperial Magical Administration (TIMA). The head of Magical Educational Facility Thirteen, Major General Hisako Kenji, announced that all students must undergo contraction before being deployed in the field.

That night, you were still thinking about what Maiya had told you. About the contraction process and about the war. You had already come into contact with an Imperial agent so that was somewhat of a known factor. The unknown was what scared you. And as it stood right now, that was contraction. If what Maiya said was true (not that you doubted his word) then death was a major possibility in the process. Taking what you learned from magical theory class, you speculated that the act of injecting mana from one's body back inside again would be very painful. You had heard of the Taikei Experiments, grusome trials conducted on unwilling subjects by the Intergalatic Defensive Mage Union in order to exaime the true nature of mana. Sure the expulsion of one's own mana was easy (if a bit tiring) but the forceable removal of mana by another mage was reported to be ten times as painful as an amputation while not under the effects of drugs. And contraction then reinjected that taken mana into the mage. Sure the power gained would be immense, but in return the pain would be excruciating. Your mind spun. You opened your eyes and sat up. As your eyes adjusted to the darkness of the room, you saw Chikako by the door, sitting on the floor. His eyes were blank and his gaze looked nowhere. He clunched his legs tight, his knuckles white against the black darkness of the night.

>You still up, Chikako?
>What're you doing?
>Hey Chikako. Are you scared?
>[Don't say anything]
>Write in
>>You still up, Chikako?

>Military Mage Quest #5
IT'S HERE *again* and with a new name this time!
I'll wait for five to ten more minutes and if there aren't any more votes I'll go with you
Welcome back though!
would not miss a single part of this quest even if my life was at stake QM.
>>You still up, Chikako?

Tomorrow's my day off. I can actually PARTICIPATE for once since discovering this quest.
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How long have you been following the quest for?

"You still up, Chikako?" You ask, your voice smothered by the night.
You see the mage stand up. "Just thinking." He says.
"About what?"
"Am I prying?"
You look down. "Sorry."
"Don't apologize."
"Listen, Chikako-"
"I already know Maiya told you about Shohara and Hina."
The truth hits you silence engulfs the both of you. "I see."
"It would've come out either way." He pauses. "What did he say?"
"Before Kazue and I were here, Hina and Shohara were in the squad. Shohara died in a fight against a Rank III. Hina lost it. And then she was taken away."
"True enough."
"Which part?"
"The part about Shohara losing."
"And the part about Hina?"
"We didn't know until later. We were shocked too, to be honest. It was everyone's first combat experience. We were outmatched, I admit. We figured she was just going through a phase. That she would get over it. It wasn't until a week later that we found out that she had complained to the faculty of the 13th about the incident."
"Where do you think she is now?"
Chikako shrugged. "I don't know. I don't want to know. You know, Maiya still blames himself for what happened."
"And you?"
"I try not to care anymore. I try not to think about it. If Kazue or Mio or you were to die...I would...."

[]It'll be all right. I won't let anyone die.
[]I can't make any promises Chikako.
[]Don't be getting all depressing on me here Chikako, we'll pull through this. The war, contraction, everything. I know it.
[]Write in
>[]I can't make any promises Chikako.
But we'll do our best
Want to promise him. Can't.

Since the second thread. I didn't really CONTRIBUTE, but I was in the tail end of the last thread (when we were coming up with various ice powers)
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You look at Chikako. "I can't make any promises Chikako."
"If Maiya-"
You cut him off. "But I'll do my best."
You see the anguish on his face. "Have you ever seen war?" He asks.
You remember that Chikako was one of the three in your squad (the others being Maiya and Mio) that had his memory altered. "I've heard stories about it. On the news."
"But you've never seen it with your own eyes?"
"No. Why are you asking?"
"About the war against the Empire?"
He nods.
"We're all nervous about it, Chikako."
"I know, but I'm not scared." He holds out his hands. They aren't trembling.
"It's ok not to be scared. You're a strong person."
"Or maybe I'm just a robot."
You tilt your head. "What do you mean?"
"All this teaching, this instruction, this education. Maybe it's just to turn us into machines of death, tools for the Alliance."
"I don't want to think about that Chikako."
"Why not?"
"Because what I want to do is focus on the task ahead. No good will come of worrying of what's happening in the past."
"That a lesson you learned back home?"
You chuckle, forcing a smile. "I guess. We have a saying that goes with that sort of thinking."
"What is it?"
"What does that mean?"
"It can't be helped. The past has happened. What's over is over. All we can do is move forward with all we got."
He nods slowly. "And if one of us dies soon?"
"Then that's that. But I promise you. I won't let that happen. I'll do all I can to make sure it doesn't."
Chikako gets up and walks over to his bed. "Goodnight Miyako. It was nice talking to you."
You nod at him and raise the covers over your body once more. "You too." You say.

The next morning you are awoken by Kazue.
"Miyako! Miyako!" She yells.
"What..." You mumble. You rub your eyes and see Maiya in the door way.
"Maiya!" Yells Mio, running over to him and hugging him.
"Hey hey, Mio." He says. "I just got out of the hospital."

[]Glad to see you're alive and well, Maiya.
[]How do you feel?
[]Are you ok?
[]Write in
>[]Glad to see you're alive and well, Maiya.
>Glad to see you're alive and well, Maiya.
>How do you feel?
>Heard the news?

In that order, if possible.
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"Glad to see you're alive and well, Maiya."
He chuckles. "Yup, I'm still alive. What about you guys?"
Kazue jumps up and down, energetic as ever. "All ready to go!"
Mio gives Maiya a thumps up.
Chikako is still asleep.
"Hey, Maiya." You ask, "How do you feel?"
"Head is still a bit hurting, but I guess that's only thanks to a certain SOMEONE." He glares at Kazue and she ruffles her hair, embarressed at her only energy.

You were just getting comfortable with Maiya back on the team, when the intercom speaks up.
"Squad 437, please report to Contraction Chamber 6. Repeat: Squad 437. Private Third Class Matsushita Miya, Private Second Class Nakasone Mio, Corporal Shioya Chikako, Private First Class Araki Kazue, and Sergeant Fujimura Maiya. Please report to Contraction Chamber 6 effective immediately."

Everyone looks around, their eyes wide. Maiya had just come back and NOW they want a contraction ceremony? What the hell was the administration thinking?
Regardless, you rush to the clothing locker and grab your uniform. Once everyone is dressed, Chikako leads the way out of the room.

The contraction chambers were located in one of the higher floors of the 13th, contained within several oval rooms that led off into smaller rooms. Chikako led you and the rest of the squad into the first circle and then into the room labeled "6". Within it were six officers, a captain at their head.
"You are Squad 437, I presume?" He began.
Maiya steps forward and bows. "Yes, I am Sergeant Fujimura Maiya, commander of Squad 437."
The captain proformed a similar but lighter bow. "I am Captain Yamazaki Ito, commander of 3rd Company. Your company."
You follow Maiya's example and bow.

[]What is the meaning of this? Our commander hasn't even recovered!
[]Captain, how will contraction be conducted?
[]When do we begin?
>[]What is the meaning of this? Our commander hasn't even recovered!
Just.. try to sound less rude. And more like inqusitive.
>"So soon? I understand the general urgency, but our commander isn't fully healed yet. Would you really risk a potentially valuable commander with such a rushed contraction?"

Or at least something like that. I'm trying to play to resource logic.
QM can you combine these two? The first one is more about asking why do this right after the commander just healed while the second is basically trying to convince them to do it latter "or leave the commander out for a while at least"
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"Captain, permission to speak?" You ask.
"Granted, Private. What is it?"
"Why is our squad being called upon for contraction when our commander hasn't fully recovered?"
Yamazaki pauses. "What did your tactics and strategy courses teach you about obeying orders, Private?"
"That if a superior is in the wrong, you are to report them to a higher officer, sir."
"And if the superior officer has given those orders?"
"To...obey those orders...sir."
"If the brass has given me orders to conduct a contraction with your squad, at this date, at this time, then why are we having this discussion Private?"
"With all due respect, Captain, I understand the general urgency, but our commander hasn't fully healed yet. Would you really risk a potentially valuable commander with such a rushed contraction?"
Yamazaki's eyes glow with a soft anger. "Are you implying I don't know the consequences of contraction, Private?"
"No sir. I am only suggesting-"
"You will suggest nothing! I am your superior, and you will obey the orders I was given by the Major General himself! You are a Rank VII! There are many other mages here ready to take your place. Now, you and your squadmates WILL participate in the contraction ceremony. Is that clear?"
You sink back. "Y-yes sir."

Yamazaki steps to the front of the squad. "All five of you will enter the circle at the center of the room. I will be overseeing this procedure. When I give the signal, the ceremony will begin. Is that clear?"
"Yes sir!" Is the unanimous reply by everyone else, including yourself.

There is a circle in the middle, marked off by red tape with six mages standing on the edge of it.
"You are not to move from the circle until the contraction is complete!" Yells Yamazaki from the sidelines. "Begin!"
And the soldiers begin extracting your mana.

You feel nothing at first, only a slight pinch of your body. But your eyes grow heavy until everything is dark.

[]Where am I?
[]What is this?
[]Try to wake up.
[]Write in.
>What is this?

Also let's remember that for later...
>Also let's remember that for later...
Remember what?
>[]What is this?

I am surprisingly not angry with how we were talked back to. In fact I HOPED that was how they would answer us, some good old military "fuck your opinions"
"What is this?" You say, your thoughts echoing into the landscape around you. Multiple voices cry out, creating a mass of sounds.
"I'm scared!"
"Don't be afraid."
"I can save you."
"It'll all be over soon."
"Don't leave."
"I love you, son."
"It won't end."
"I hate you!"
"It's all over."
"The dream is now."
You notice you are breathing heavily. You look around and find yourself in a black space, your body visable but the ground and surroundings all black. Darkness doesn't exist, only the absense of space. You see the rest of the squad with you.
"What is this?" You ask it again.
Each of the people there speak out of turn.
The landscape turns to Maiya's face and advances quickly.

You open your eyes. The familiar weight of your chest is gone. You feel your arms and body. You have more muscles than you usually had. You run your hand through your hair. It's short. You move back. You see Maiya's body.
"What the..."

The blackness fades to light. An apartment. Two parents. A child. Fire outside. An earthquake. The child is hugging his parents. He is afraid. They all are afraid. Outside you hear a robotic voice: "Come in peace. We are the Transdimensional Mage's Peacekeeping Alliance. I repeat. We come in peace."
"Mommy. I'm scared." Says the child. He clings to his mother.
She rubs his head. "Don't be sweetie. We'll always be here."
He looks up at her. "Really?"
There is an explosion. A blast. The building is destroyed.
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Another scene. The boy is walking. The city is destroyed. Ruins. Soldiers are running through the streets. Gunfire is heard. A figure, a ghost, appears in front of the child.
It is the mother. "You forgot about me, you monster." She says.
"No, I didn't!" The child screams out. The voice no longer sounds like a child's voice. It's Maiya's.
"You forgot all about me and your father and went off to be a student. You forgot all about us and abandoned us to be with your new friends."
"I didn't! They made me forget!"
"You wanted to forget! Wanted to forget about all the times we fought! About all the troubles we had! You're trying to forget even now!"
"That's not true!"
Maiya pauses. "You may be right. Maybe I wanted to forget. But. What I have right now. That's what I care about. I'll move forward with that."
"You'll throw away your family for...for what? Some children in the military?"
"No. I'm not throwing you away."
"What do you call this then?" The mother is crying.
"It's no use grieving the dead."
"Then you accept?"
"Accept what?"
"It's not just us that makes the decision, but everyone else." She looks at you. You see everyone else around the mother, Chikako, Kazue, and Mio, all ghostly figures.
You hear the voices forming in your mouth, calling out for Maiya.

[]Write in
Sorry made a typo. It goes:

>Mother: Then you accept?
>Maiya: Yes
>Mother: It's not just us that makes the decision, but everyone else.
....okay gimme a minute, I'm trying to figure out what the hell I'm reading. I'll vote proper in a bit.
Same here..
QM.. Consider me right and proper mind fucked.
You are inside Maiya's memories and his dead mother (a stand in for his subconscious) is asking both him and everyone else (that are in the memory with him) if they accept the contraction
QM........ Now you kinda ruined the whole point of the your last two posts...

Accept then...
Damnit, I knew it was a stand in for something.

I had the subject matter partially right.I knew if involved the contraction, but what I'm trying to puzzle out right now is...the price to be paid.
It wasn't meant to be "ah ha you will never solve this mind fuck!" but more of an insight into Maiya's past. I just simplified what the subject of the scene was.
I don't think we really have a choice here... We don't know what the military does with people who don't pass Contraction.
Ohh oki thanks anyway QM for cleaning it up.
Wait, I got it. I think I know what the rub is.


>Even if we forget why we're mad at them, we're still hopefully going to be able to pull from a deep subconscious anger about it.
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"I accept." You say.
"Then the condition is met." Says the mother.
The illusion breaks.
Pain courses through your body. You can't stop screaming. Yelling. The anguish rushes through your limbs and soul, seeping through every part of your body. You feel as if you are bleeding, but you see no blood. You gasp for air, your eyes trying to focus on some detail. But the darkness remains. You scream and curse and try to move. You clutch your shoulders. It hurts everywhere and it doesn't stop. Your vision starts to blurr.
"Goddamn goddamn fuck fuck SHIT!" You yell, your voice going out into the darkness. You collapse onto all fours, trying to call towards to something. You grind your teeth. You roll to your sides, trying to someone at least engulf yourself in the pain and get used to it. That doesn't happen. Each wave is new with new pains. It doesn't stop. You take more gasps of air. You are clutching your own skin, digging your nails into your skin for a grasp on what is reality and what isn't.
It ebbs. You look upwards and see Kouta. Your younger brother.
"Kouta..." The pain returns, giving you more anguish.
"Sister. You look like you're in some trouble."
You laugh. You try laughing the pain off, like some sort of hero or something. It doesn't work.
"You look pitiful." He says.
"You're not my brother." You say through gritted teeth. "He would never say something like that."
"True enough. I'm not your brother." He knees down and rubs your cheek. "I'm you, Miyako."
You clutch your stomach. "Me...?"
"Your soul. What else?"
"A person you trust."
You gasp again. "I...see. What do you want?"
"You already saw Maiya's trial. Now I've come to ask you a question."
"What is it?" You feel anger rising, whether it is a result of the pain or the circumstances you don't know.
"Do you miss Father? Do you even think about him at all?"

[]Not really.
[]To hell with you and these questions! Get me out of here!
[]All the time.
[]Write in.
>[]To hell with you and these questions! Get me out of here!
>[]Write in.

"Of fucking course I do! The hell kind of question is that from me to myself?!"

We're in a lot of pain.
>[]To hell with you and these questions! Get me out of here!
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"To hell with you and these questions! Get me out of here!" You yell through the pain.
"Very well." Replies Kouta. No. Your soul.
A word appears in your head through the torment. You speak it. "Tsuyuhime." The sword appears in your hand.
Your soul speaks. "If you wish to escape. Prove to me you can overcome your family, your own brother."
The pain doesn't disappear. You curse the circumstances that have brought you to this moment. To this fight. But you push through. You grip Tsuyuhime tighter. You ready it and your own body for battle.
"I overcome it."
Your soul smirks and charges. The world blurs and you steel your feet. Iron clashes against iron and you are pushed back. He kicks you onto the ground and you spin on the floor. Wheezing, you struggle to stand up. You whisper a name, hoping it will give you good luck. "Tsuyuhime Tsuyuhime Tsuyuhime Tsuyuhime Tsuyuhime." You know it won't give you more luck or give you strength. The pain still pulses through your body. But you are focused. Focused on the enemy ahead.

[]Charge at him. (1d20)
[]Cast magic (1d100)
[]"Why do I have to fight you?"
[]Write in
Rolled 7 (1d20)

>>[]Charge at him.

"The HELL is this place's problem with family? Is it really something you're so damn scared of?"

Because I dunno about you guys, but I'm sensing a theme.
Rolled 15 (1d100)

>[]Cast magic (1d100)
Um um um... Does magic work on corporeal beings? and hell even if its our soul.. I don't really know it's combat moves.

Let's start by probing it's defenses. Throw something sharp at it.
*Screams internally*
This is nothing new, to be fair.

The dice are ALWAYS trying to kill you.

Except when they aren't.
Oh gee thanks anon. I was just trying to come up with a smart way to find out how powerful our soul is at beating us up. AND THEN FUCKING DICE MURDERED ME IN MY SLEEP.
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To be honest, you guys have always gotten bad rolls (except for that one time you blocked bullets midair)

You grip Tsuyuhime and charge at your soul.
"The HELL is this place's problem with family? Is it really something you're so damn scared of?"
He intercepts your blade and pushes you back. Your head pulses with pain again. You scream and charge again and again and again. Every time your soul pushes you back. He advances on you.
"I'm just your thoughts. Your emotions. Your feelings. You are afraid."
"Afraid? Like hell I am."
"You are afraid of forgetting. Of dying just like everyone else."
You gasp for some more air. You swing your sword again and steel hits steel. He grabs your arm and twists it. New pain courses through your body. You grit your teeth.
He whispers into your ear, "You're scared aren't you? Is that really how you feel? Wouldn't you be fine with just staying here? With Mother and Father and Kouta?"
You struggle to stand up. "I wouldn't. I want to get out of this place!"
"Then beat me. Surely you can beat your own self.
"Like hell I would be able to do that!"
He raises his hand. An icicle flies out. You recognize the spell as Tōketsu no Yari. You raise up your arms in retaliation but the spear goes into your arm, pinning you to the ground. You can barely hear your soul talking.
"This is how you killed that other mage isn't it? Can you even remember that person's name?"

[]No, I can't. They don't matter.
[]Screw you. [Cast magic] (1d100)
[]Try to pull the icicle out
[]Their name was... (1d100 to remember)
[]Write in

>Try to pull the icicle out (1d20)
Rolled 3 (1d20)

>[]No, I can't. They don't matter.
>>Try to pull the icicle out (1d20)
How big is the icicle? Even if we pull it out it might have immobilized our arm just by the sheer size of the hole in it. If not then.
Try to use the icicle as a side arm knife in our other hand if we can.
Dice.... please...............
Rolled 49 (1d100)

>[]Their name was... (1d100 to remember)

Yeah. This quest'll end quick if our luck keeps up. Or down, rather. Frustrating considering I just joined.

Also is this first vote wins or majority?
It's not large, just about the size of a normal spear-tip. It's just stuck in real tight.
>Also is this first vote wins or majority?
Majority/highest number.
Yeah, see, that's what confused me, because I would've thought

would've won then.
The 7 was higher in terms of percentages
17 out of 1d100 is lower than 7 out of 1d20

and its me who was >>44808282
Rolled 35 (1d100)

>[]Their name was... (1d100 to remember)
Oh, I'm an idiot, that was a 1d100, I was seeing d20. My apologies. I'm so mindfucked by bad rolls I deluded myself into think it was a good roll for once.
I guess you just rolled low for eye sight >_>
So I guess folks, the question now is:

What do we do after we botch one too many rolls and bite it? Game over, sucks for everyone? Because I'm not that interested in switching perspectives...
We will restart from the decision that killed us.... Right QM? RIGHT!?!?!?!?
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"Her name was..." You push through the pain, delving into your memories. "Yaeda."
You pull the spear out, blood racing out.
Your soul laughs. "You actually remembered. Good for you. But that doesn't change the truth. You forgot about your family. You chose to run away."
"Run away? I haven't done that. Not once."
"I'm not lying!"
Your soul scoffs at you. You clutch your head, the pain returning. "I'm you. I know everything about you."
"Then you should know I won't abandon Kouta! I won't abandon Mother either!"
"You're weak. If you cant even beat your own soul, you can't even hope to protect your family. Or are you saying you don't need me to do that?"
"I don't! I'll do it myself."
"How concided. You are truely an idiot."
"Maybe that's true."
He charges at you. The two of you clash blades.
"Your swordsmanship is weak. Weak and shallow."
You grit your teeth. "So what do you say I do then? Huh?"
"That's up to you. You're the one that forgot about your family. That wants to run away and forget everything."
"I never forgot!"
"You never worried. Not about Kouta, nor Mother."
You keep silent.
He charges at you.
You are forced to fight with one hand, the other clutching your arm. The clang of steel echoes in the dark space. You push back and dodge more of your soul's attacks, your own feet balancing on a knife's edge.
"So, what is your choice? What do you do?"

[]Defeat you and prove my strength.
[]Abandon my memories and move forward
[]Write in
I have a suprise should we get into that place so don't worry outright death won't come. Killing off the MC isn't my style. That doesn't mean getting into stupid situations isn't gonna come with repercussions though.
>[]Abandon my memories and move forward
This is the part where all the anons in this thread are going to throw shit at me.. I am not ready...
>[]Write in
Accept that worrying about them is useless and that I need to move forward.
Being weighed down by the past and memories instead of using them as a guide should be something we got lectured on at one point.
Didnt we ever hear the story of the monk, the student, and the woman at the river?
You really disappoint me, anon.
I'm not angry, just disappointed.
.... Can we kill it please? I have never wanted to take a soul as much as I have now.
Guys now that I thought about this.. If THIS is what we have to go trough.. The chances are at least 70% that our squad won't be the same when we see them again.....
For telling truths you don't want to hear, that you're not some super special snowflake that can do what she wants with no repercussion?
For pointing out how you're a shitty person that the rest of the squad doesn't point out because at least you can take a bullet for them?
No... For beating us up and being smug as fuck about it.
For being us and better at it.
So guys what will it be?
Currently we have:
>Attack: 1
>Abandon memories: 1
>Take the middle path: 1
Other than claiming to be our soul. Its not reaaaaall us is it? I mean, from the logical stand point, Its another character in the story.
I'm going to be rolling in 5 unless anymore votes are taken
Go for it QM.
Rolled 3 (1d3)

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"I...I..." You push through the pain again. But it grows too much. You drop to your knees. "I accept that worrying about them is useless. I need to move forward."
"Then you forfeit your memory?" Asks your soul.
You stand up. "No! I accept that it is useless to worry about them. But I won't give up on them. Their loss will become my strength. I will keep them in my memories. But my focus will be on the now. And the future. I will move forward. But I won't forget."
Your soul relaxes. "Good. You have accepted me and yourself. I think it's time to send you back. Then you are ready to complete the contract?"
"Yes, I accept the contract."

The darkness breaks. You open your eyes. You look around. You see the rest of your squad on the floor, crouched over in the fetal position. You try to move too but you are sore all over. You hear a dim voice beyond your sight.
"Contraction complete! Take them to the hospital!"
Your eyes fade to familar darkness again.

When you wake up, a nurse greets you. "Just got out of contraction huh?"
"Where...where am I?"
"The hospital. You're squadmates are sleeping in beds right next to you."
You relax. "Thank goodness. What are you here for?"
"Just some tests. I'll be checking your mana levels and physicals to see what's changed since contraction."
"I see..."
"How do you feel?"
You smile. "Tired. Very tired."
"That's how it is for everyone. It's normal."
"I have no idea what happened there."
"It's different for everyone."
"You think so."
"I know so. Matsushita Maiya was it?"
"Just sit down and relax, I'll be taking your readings in a bit."

Current rankings:
Physical Ability:B
Mental Magical Ability:C
Mental Magical Ability:A

>Roll 5d3 for ranking increases
Rolled 2, 3, 1, 1, 1 = 8 (5d3)

Here comes the Snow!
Rolled 3, 3, 1, 3, 2 = 12 (5d3)


Rolled 1, 2, 2, 2, 1 = 8 (5d3)

give me the most OP shit you can dice, and don't screw this up like last time.
Rolled 2, 2, 1, 3, 1 = 9 (5d3)

Dice don't like you talking to them like that.
*urge to murder rising*
New rankings:
Physical Ability:A+
Mental Magical Ability:A+
Mystical Magical Ability:

New Overall Rank: Rank IV
Ah forgot
Mystical Magical Ability:A+

So...we aight?
Now I don't expect us to become god in one day or anything but....

Consider that the last person we fought against was this:
Physical: AA
Mental Magical Ability:O
Mystical Magical Ability:A+

I still say we have ways to go... God Emperor damn it dice roll....
Remember outsmarting our enemies (if the QM allows it) can be just as good.
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You are on the lower end of the high tier mages. But you bumped up three ranks so that's good.
Reminder that ranks go F->E->D->C->B->A->A+->AA->S->O

"Here you go." The hands you the results of the tests. "Congradulations on your new rank, Matsushita-san." She stands up. "Now if you will excuse me." She bows and leaves.

You were given clearance to leave the hospital later that day and when you arrived, the rest of the squad was there. Maiya was a Rank V, Mio a Rank VI, Chikako a Rank IV, and Kazue a Rank V. The five of you tried not to talk to each other, given what you had seen during the contraction ceremony. Time passed slowly, ever so slowly. Your mind was still on what you saw. Maiya's past. The past he forgot. Much like the past you chose to forsake in return for power. Was it worth it? A higher number on a scale you didn't understand? You didn't know. All you knew was that war awaited your future. How far off it was you didn't know. You didn't know a lot of things.

The next morning Maiya handed around a notice he had recieved in the mail. It said that students would have one last day to take normal classes and tie up any loose ends before squads would be assigned to their various brigades and other organized formations.
"All right!" Said Kazue in the morning, stretching. "Let's all go to class shall we?" She always was the first person to speak. It was if what she saw hadn't effected her at all. The rest of the squad didn't want to talk so they just went along with it, you included.

You found yourself looking at the last avaliable classes for the day. You only really had time for one so you chose...

[]Ranks and their Meaning
[]Magical Enginners and their Place in History
[]Mana Reserves and the Dangers of Mana Depletion
>[]Mana Reserves and the Dangers of Mana Depletion
>[]Mana Reserves and the Dangers of Mana Depletion
>>[]Mana Reserves and the Dangers of Mana Depletion
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You decided to go to Mana Reserves and the Dangers of Mana Depletion. Given your experience yesterday during contraction, you might as well learn about what sort of dangers you might face in the battlefield. Not that you wanted to think about it anyways.

Naruki-sensei was very tall. In fact, that was her sole defining feature. Her face was normal, just like any other teacher you had seen around the 13th, her dressing style plain, and she spoke in a voice that was informative while not treading the line towards being too formal or too casual. You sat next to Chikako for this class.

"Every sentinent being in the universe is born with the essense of magic within their bodies." She began. "When a mage extracts this magic and expells mana in order to cast magic, they emptying their primary mana reserves. This is why the use of magic causes exhertion on the mage and why tiredness is a common side effect of casting magic. This reserve is usually replenished through either rest or the consumption of food. In essence: the less tired you are, the more full your primary mana reserves are. This is what you generally draw upon to cast magic. However, recent research into the nature of mana has revealed a second mana reserve: the Secondary Mana Reserve. This reserve stores a person's life force. And while this sounds like something out of a fantasy story, there is some truth to this finding. The secondary mana reserve is a first aid kit of sorts, as it acts to preserve the person's well being by directly injecting their own mana into their body. An older person or person suffering from a deadly illness or disease will generally have lower secondary mana reserve levels than a healthy, young person. Now, can anyone tell me what the uses of a secondary mana reserve could be to a mage?"

[]Guess (1d100)
[]Try to avoid answering (1d100)
[]More mana to use
[]Increased regeneration capabilities
[]Simultaeous casting
Rolled 91 (1d100)

>[]Guess (1d100)
Cover me! I am going in blind!
>[]Increased regeneration capabilities

If it's mainly to help with healing your body, I'd imagine this is a logical progression from that. Rapid healing, but depending on the severity of the injury, it'll save off some of your lifespan.
>[]More mana to use
>[]Increased regeneration capabilities
>[]Simultaeous casting
All three are possible uses.
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You answer. "A second mana reserve means that a mage is able to cast more mana if the situation permitts it."
"Correct." Says Naruki-sensei. "However, the risks of gaining entry to the secondary mana reserve and using it are great. While extreme power is gained through use of the secondary mana reserves, the user puts themself at risk for severe mental feed back, a term I will come back to later. And if a mage exhausts their entire secondary mana reserves, this will not only severely injure them, but might even cause death to the mage. Unlike the primary mana reserves, the seconday reserves cannot be replenished and thus only a few mages are able to use the primary and secondary mana reserves. Researchers have called this act of unlocking both reserves and using them for magic the "full power release". It is highly dangerous for the majority of mages to use this state and the vast majority of full power release cases result in the mage's death." She pauses. "Now, onto the effects of mental feedback. When a mage's mana reserves are depleted or when they attempt to cast a spell that consumes more than their mana reserves hold, they can suffer from mental feedback. The Alliance catogorizes mental feedback in three stages: minor, common, and severe. Minor symptoms of mental feedback include: spottiness in the eyes, headaches, stomach pains, and soreness in the legs, arms, fingers, shoulders, or neck. Common symptoms of mental feedback include: temporary blindness or deafness, major migraines, joint pains, uncontrollable spasming, soreness, the need to vomit, difficulty breathing, bleeding of the nose or eyes, and numbness. Now, can anyone tell me three symptoms of severe mental feedback?

(Select three)
[]Permament blindess or deafness
[]Phantom pains
[]Internal hemorrhaging
[]Permament blindess or deafness
[]Internal hemorrhaging
[]Phantom pains
Going with this answer.
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"Permanment blindness or deafness, internal hemorrhaging, and phantom pains. You answer."
"Close, but not quite." Says Naruki-sensei. "The symptoms of severe mental feedback are: major mental damage in areas of the brain that deal with mental processing, amnesia, the inability to move certain joints, permament blindness or deafness, muteness, or in rare cases death. Everyone, always be on the look out for these symptoms. If one of your squadmates appears to be having the symptoms of mental feedback, report them to a higher officer immediately. Ok, that's it for class today!"

Right after class ended, there was the sound of the innercom. Everyone looked up.
"Attention all mages: please report to the Entrance Hall. There you will meet with your brigade heads. Repeat: all mages are to report to the Entrance Hall to meet with your brigade commanders."

The Entrance Hall was packed with people when you arrived. Thankfully you were able to quickly find your squad.
"Any idea what our brigade is?" Kazue asked.
Maiya silently nodded. "the 415th Training Brigade. Codename: White Devils."
"Omnious isn't it?" You say.
"Let's try not to think about it." Says Chikako. And the rest of you followed Maiya.

Colonel Inoue Sakura was short, even for her sex. She wore glasses and had her hair in a ponytail. Several thousand other mages stood alongside you as you lined up in front of her.
"Follow me." She said. You followed her into a meeting hall. It was large and it still barely fit the rest of the brigade.
"Welcome to the White Devils." She said. "You will be serving with me until this war is over and I will expect three things out of you. Do you know what those things are?"
"No ma'am!" Came the reply from everyone, yourself included.
"They are: obediance, loyalty, and results. Can you deliver on those three things?"
"Yes ma'am!"
"From now on you no longer a squad. You are a brigade. You no longer act alone. Am I understood?"
"Yes ma'am!"
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"Dismissed. I have sent your squad commanders your battalion, company, and platoon assignments. Meet with your platoon in two hours. In the mean time, hit the armories and replace those training devices with some real ones."
Everyone salutted before they left, their boots pounding in the hall. You looked at Maiya for your assignment.
Without anyone asking, he said, "Our assignment is 23rd Battalion, 3rd Company, 12th Platoon. Heading the 23rd is Lieutenant Colonel Kirishima Ikagura. Yamazaki Ito we already met. He's the head of the 3rd Company. And lastly is Second Lieutenant Takahashi Miura of the 12th Platoon."
"Great." Said Mio. It seemed as if everyone was trying to ignore what had happened during the ceremony. "Let's hit the armory. I'll see you guys in a couple hours."
You waved goodbye to Mio before heading to the armory yourself.

"Hey Matsushita-san! Long time no see!" Haruka, the magismith, greeted you.
"Hey Kawatsuji-san. I'm here for my new device."
"Ok. I can't have it ready now but it'll be shipped to your battlesite as soon as I have the mold in. Do you want to change the mold?"

[]Yes (katana)
[]Yes (shinai)
[]Yes (longsword)
[]No (jian)
Agree with this one.. I was up for the rapier way at the start but after i looked up a bit more on the jian I really did start to like it.
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"No I'm fine with this model." You say. No reason to change what has worked so far in the past.
"Ok." Says Haruka. "Anyways, you've been given authorization for a rank 5 device. Oh, and I heard you got appointed to Private Second Class. Good luck out there." You nod to here and leave.

You meet up with your squadmates again in the hangar bay, along with the other squad in your platoon, Squad 721. It is a five-man squad just like you. You didn't have time to ask for their names before the platoon commander steps forward. You and your squad salute him before he says, "At ease. Our orders are to deploy to a border world called Eranku. There we will join up with the other platoons in the 3rd Company and launch counter offensive ops against the present Imperial forces on the ground there. Roger?"
"Now file in soldiers!"
The transport is a heavy vehicle, able to seat ten to twelve people in it's midsection. Takahashi taps the pilot on the shoulder and he revs up the engines, signaling the hatch to open and the back of the shuttle to close. You get one last view of Magical Education Facility Thirteen before the shuttle lifts off, entering interdimensional space and returning you to the universe, where the unknown factors of war and combat await you. You look down and wonder. "What will the future bring?" You are worried.
Ok that's it for tonight's session guys. Next one will be tomorrow at 6 PM PST. My twitter is https://twitter.com/finaljas90 for anyone that wants to keep up to date with my updates. I'll be around for a little bit (it's almost 3 here) for any questions.

What did you guys think of the session? Comments? Concerns? General thoughts?
Well this session was nice. I admit the previous one was better but that was more based around the fact that I did not fail every dice roll and that the thread was over-all more friendly last time.

So what kind of world is Eranku? Is it a single environment planet? Or is there more to it?

Also, any maps on this universe and their factions? I know that sounds a bit to much but. I am just a map fanatic when it comes to stuff like this.
Unfortunately I am a terrible cartographer but I have some map images I could show as a frame of reference. Eranku is a mostly cold-ish planet (that doesn't mean it doesn't have warmer/colder or drier/humider biomes though). I also lost some steam near the end so that's partially my fault. Next session should be better. I have a whole doc of the different factions though (warning: the Alliance and the Empire have the most detail) if you want me to put it up at the beginning of every thread.

What do you think of the worldbuilding/world details/magic system so far?
>I have a whole doc of the different factions though
Links would be nice yeah.

I did not mean a TO detailed map.. I was referring to something like the picture I posted now.

Can't really comment to much on the magic system. I is just a building block for the quest and its a nice one.

The world details.. Well it might just be me but.. i can't really picture it.. Like i don't know enough about the alliance and some of its unique faction quirks and stuff. You did give us some description on the academy, and for quests it does not have to be overly detailed but.. I would have liked a bit more, can't really put my word in to it. But if you think its to much work to write all that in, then don't do it the quest is good as it is. I have abandoned another quest that I was following simply because it overlapped with this one.

All in all you are doing a very good job QM, really if you did not tell me before that this was your first quest I would not have guessed.
Oh thanks. The reason why maps are hard is because some factions like the Empire or the Alliance are dimensional spaning (like they have terrriotories in parralel dimensions, not that they control entire universes, just they have holdings in different universes). I know what you mean though, I'm not the best at describing enviorments but I'll try to put more effort into it come this next arc on Eranku. Granted, this is only the 5th thread so I think more details will become apparent with time. Really, thanks for the compliments, I super appriciate it.
>I super appriciate it.
Awww something just itched in the black abyss that once was my heart.

You are doing a good job though.
Well you can try to describe their over all territories with words one time or another. They have to have a limit after all, No matter what amount of dimensions there are, Or else war would seem almost pointless then.

Can you give me a short about the alliance and the empire? Like their closest real world equivalents?
>Well you can try to describe their over all territories with words one time or another
I wanted to keep it kinda vague to keep the feeling that they were these huge galaxy-spanning nations.
>Can you give me a short about the alliance and the empire? Like their closest real world equivalents?
The Alliance's closest equivalent would be America and the Empire's would be the Japanese Empire. The Alliance is a collection of magical governments that have united for protection against the Empire and have absorbed other nations under their umbrella through (sometimes) forceable annexation. The Empire has a more centralized government and an Imperial Family that hold significant power in Imperial politics. They have somewhat less territory than the Alliance and because of this are always looking to expand their military sector (their civil service sector is a bit understaffed because of this). They have one of the strongest militaries in the universe (rivaled only by the Alliance).
Very interesting! Ow and sorry that I am being so inquisitive about such things, I just have a hard on for detailed nations explanations from their military/strategy to their technological and cultural quirks as well as territory.

If you write plenty in to your factions doc I won't bother you with such questions in the after quest talks!

Well guess this is it. Good quest part as always QM! Esdesu out!
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