>Previous Thread: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/45221958/
>General Pastebin: pastebin.com/u/TaskForceKaz
You say the words ‘operation site’, but everyone knows that it just means that you want to get a picnic spot set up on the beach. It definitely sounded cooler in your head than it did when spoken aloud. At least, that’s what you infer from Victoria stifling a giggle and Brady just flat-out laughing. Fitz is kind enough to just give you her usual crooked smile as your ears burn red out of embarrassment.
Perhaps you should lay off the official jargon until Rookie Team’s on a more dangerous mission. Hopefully when you say it then, you won’t come off looking like you’re too big for your britches... or swimming suit in this case. But, you digress. You have other things to think about.
The crisp smell of the salty air fills your lungs as your group plods along the sidewalk towards the beach proper. It is fresh and bracing, sharp and gritty, a different kind of natural air than the crisp scent of mountain woodland you had gotten used to at Cocytus. The forests are calm, and solemn in their silent vigil underneath the mountains. Here, the crash and rumble of the tide are the masters of the airwaves.
Yet for all their differences, they still convey the same euphoric feelings of freedom and invigorating vitality, found only in the natural world and left untainted and unsullied by pollution.
But you shift the main focus of your mind away from poetic prose and concentrate on the sight of the Boardwalk. Right now, there are definitely more people than there were last night, and there’s an excitement in the air. Why wouldn’t there be? Everyone’s happy, the tourists, locals and shop owners, to be back on the beach now that the waters are ‘safe’ to swim in once more.
You can’t feel the same though. Even though you told Victoria to discount fiction tropes as having no merit in real situations, you can’t help the nervous feeling that’s growing in your stomach. You know what they say about calms before storms? Yeah. That’s the moment you’re feeling right now.
At any rate, the four of you manage to find a spot just when the lifeguards declare the beach open. It’s somewhat of a scramble as families and parties rush to find premium spots. None of you could really give a damn if you were close to the water. A nice venue a good twenty feet from the tide line is perfect enough for what you’re all here for anyway.
Ten minutes later, and now your venue is ready to go. Brady’s already lounging in his chair, fiddling with his Mobile COMP. Victoria and Fitz don’t seem to be too eager to go into the water (not that you would blame them) and are keeping a sharp eye on the beach-goers, especially the packs of kids enjoying themselves in the water.
>Get in the water.
>Keep lookout with the girls.
>Search for Alyssa.
When you make a promise, you keep it. That’s the tenant that mom drilled into your head when you were of impressionable age. A man is as only as good as his word, and your word’s been pretty good over the years, barring the occasional misstep over small, trivial things. You aren’t perfect. No one is.
Grunting, you push yourself off from the straw mat, kick the sand out of your shoes and slip them on. “I’ll walk around the area for a bit,” You tell the others. “Just to cover a wider range. After that, I'm gonna look around for Alyssa and the rest of the Phi Alpha girls. Keep in communication and let me know immediately if you see anything, got it?”
At the mention of Alyssa’s name, no overt movements or expressions are made aside from Victoria rolling her eyes as Brady grins something wicked. “Got it./Understood./Yep.”
The beach is packed, but it isn’t crowded to the point where you’re stepping on picnic mats and sunbathers. There’s just enough space between blankets and tents for you to navigate without bumping into anyone, knocking down someone’s sandcastle or photo-bombing a family photo.
You find a spot relatively clear of too much traffic and whip out your Mobile COMP. Inserting a pair of headphones into the jack, you punch a few buttons on the touch screen before holding it out as if you were taking a picture of the shoreline.
The HUD flares to life with a series of electronic tones and whines as the programs loaded into the machine boot up. Magnitite sensor, motion detection, infrared scanning, and even localized map/compass, the whole nine yards of what would normally be in a D.E.M.O.N.I.C.A. helmet gradually appeared on the screen of your mobile device. Standard package for every incognito agent looking to keep a low profile.
A scan of the water confirms that Division Three was right on the money when they said that there was demonic presence here. Right now, the magnitite levels are lower than what was on the report. Bastard must’ve gone to ground, and the only motion in the water is that of the swimmers. Closest marine life was the seagulls five meters out.
You snap a few pictures for the sake of maintaining cover and make your way back up the Boardwalk. Unless your hunch is wrong, Alyssa’s booth should be in the same place that it was when you helped her construct it. Shouldn’t take too long to find them.
It doesn’t. Within a few minutes of craning your neck and looking over the heads of the boardwalk pedestrians, you find the booth. It’s pretty hard to miss with all the decorations on it. Some assorted ocean-themed decorations accompanying the icon of St. Jude’s hanging from the top of the board.
You see Alyssa, a brunette on her phone you assume to be Emma, and an assortment of girls dressed in the colors of Phi Alpha: pink, white and gold. Some of them are manning the table, dispensing smiles and “thank you”s as passerby drop change into a donations box. From what you can hear from your current position, you can hear the rest of them talking about their fundraiser, the different types of leukemia and why it’s important to be aware of their dangers.
It’s probably best to approach them…
>…in a friendly manner. (“How much is the recommended donation?”)
>…in a flirtatious manner. (“Hey, there. Remember me?”)
Adding to >>45241788 , I want to point out that the main way of getting from the Boardwalk to the beach involves going down a walkway covered in sand. See those two openings there in the picture? That's what Rehoboth has.
Multiply the number of people in this picture by at least six times as many, and it becomes virtually impossible to do any kind of tracking of any sort. People are going on the beach to go swimming, getting off the beach to use the bathroom/get food, etc. Sand has a habit of getting shifted around a lot in high-pedestrian beaches.
>Also sand shifts a lot on busy beaches.
yeah, but footprints can get pretty deep, depending on the sand. If the sand is loose, it's actually quite hard to erase with random traffic.
Better to be safe than sorry. You’re no lady killer, and you aren’t about to start any time soon.
After gently pushing your way through the crowd, you eventually break away from the rest of the pedestrians and walk towards the booth in a nonchalant manner. It seems that none of them have noticed you yet.
Well, you’re quick to rectify that.
With a smile on your face, you walk up to Alyssa and say, “How much is the recommended donation?”
The redhead jumps at the sound of your voice and swivels on her feet to see you. Her mouth manages to avoid dropping in a wide ‘O’, but her eyes visibly widen and her face slightly reddens. “A-Andrew? You…you actually came?”
“Yeah. Keeping promises that I make is a habit of mine. And I figure that it’s the least I could do now that I know how much this means to you.”
The blush on her face deepens. “…I...thank you," she smiles nervously. "Yeah, I really appreciate you coming here..."
Behind her shoulder, you notice some of the girls whispering and making gestures towards you. Grins are plainly visible on their faces. From the way their excited tones mingle in with the dull roar of the area, you’re fairly sure that they’re talking about you. And, undoubtedly, Alyssa.
The aforementioned sorority leader either chose to deliberately ignore it or wasn’t able to pay attention whatsoever. Looking at her, you see why. She’s too busy trying to find the right words to speak.
“…I mean…erm…” Alyssa’s mouth twitches downward before she slowly speaks, “If…if I was acting all weird at all during…the phone call last night, I…I probably was, wasn’t I? Things’ve been rough, but…I’m really, really sorry…just wanted to let you know…”
>“There’s nothing to apologize for.” [Straight]
>“How about a donation to make you feel better?” [Humorous]
>“You’re too cute to be frowning.” [Flirtatious]
Anyone else watch the show Supernatural?
This case (and kind of this quest) is giving off some vibes like it.
>Blending in with the locals
>Hunting a monster that most of society is not aware of
>Girl that wants one of the characters dick but will be left mostly unfulfilled as the protags move on the the next case.
Seriously all we need is a twist where its like Alyssa accidentally summoned the demon when she was preying for her brother's health and the demon is using its victim's deaths to sustain the brother.
And a Impala.
It's funny that you mention Supernatural. In my iOS run of SMT1, I named the Hero Sam, the Chaos Hero Dean, and the Law Hero Cas. I'm not shitting you when I say that this actually happened.
>Fine, you can have both options.
>Rare opportunity that won't likely happen again.
>The choices shall do the fusion dance.
You wave off her apology with a motion of your hand. “Look, you’ve got nothing to apologize for. I told you already last night; I understand where you’re coming from. It’s never easy when it comes to dealing with cancer. Besides,” Your lips curve upward in a sly smile. “You’re too cute to be making that kind of face. It doesn’t suit you.”
There is good news and bad news. The good news is that you managed to get the downcast look off of Alyssa’s face. The bad news? You’ve brought the girl into a full blush, and you can see the rest of the sorority girls behind her either gawking at you, or whispering even more excitedly.
You try not to break your smile. Goddammit. Why did you do that? You aren’t a lady killer!
“Hey! Who the fuck are you?”
The sudden brash voice jolts you out of your introspection. Pushing her way through the crowd, a young woman with blonde hair and a scowl on her face makes towards you. You try not to stare at the way her method of walking causes her…assets to bounce up and down as she marches right up towards you and thrusts a finger directly into your face.
“Look here, pal,” the blonde snarls, the last word in her introduction dripping with venom, “Unless you’re here asking about the leukemia or about to make a donation, we aren’t interested in having you stand here and chat up our girls. We aren’t that vapid or cheap to fall for whatever shit you’re trying to pull on Alyssa.”
Her aggressive manner seems to leave you momentarily speechless. Like...what the fuck?
>"I don't believe I got your name."
>"So that's what the locals meant."
>"Who the hell are you?"
…well, at any rate, you now know what the locals meant by ‘rude Phi Alpha girls’, if the woman in front of you is anything to go by and the way she used “our girls”. Everyone else at the booth seems to be pleasant so far. This one, though? No wonder the locals were complaining. ‘One rotten apple’ and all that.
Still, you have to be the bigger guy. After all, it makes it all the more justified in your favor if things spiral out of control. “I was merely asking Alyssa about the recommended donation,” you say in the driest tone you can muster while remaining some pretense of civility. “And I don’t believe I got your name.”
The blonde scoffs and tosses her hair. “You must be thinking with the wrong head if you think I’m just gonna up and give it to you like that. And donations? Recommended is twenty dollars. Now with that settled, why don’t you go scurry back to wherever the rest of your fuckboys are hiding and just leave us the hell alone.”
It seems that the girl’s attitude seems to be putting everyone on edge. There’s a small gathering of locals and tourists that are pointing and whispering at you, and the Phi Alpha girls seem to be suddenly interested in their phones, nails, or a combination of the two. You try not to groan as you realize that you’re in the middle of a scene. And the kicker is that it isn’t even your fault.
“Madison!” Alyssa hisses, flashing the girl a frosty glare. It seems that a combination of her indignation, anger and embarrassment seems to have gotten her to drop the pauses between her words. “What the hell are you doing?”
“It’s for your own good,” the now-identified Madison retorted. “Look, the problem is that you’re too nice. Learn to say no! Drive these horny asshats away and refuse to put up with any of their shit-”
>The hardest part about writing in the mystery genre? When the audience goes off the rails with theories and I only put two red herrings.
That's quests and I suppose tabletops baby! Some people will overshadowrun, some people will fixate on meaningless points, some people will overlook your actual clues or dismiss them entirely. So many different minds that look at a scene differently.
Its a crapshoot really, best get used to it now.
“You’re the one in the wrong. Andrew’s…Andrew’s a friend,” she hesitates slightly before hardening her resolve. “And right now, you’re acting like a total bitch-"
“Wait, he’s the one?" Madison cuts her off with a brusque tone. "The one that got you all misty-eyed when I came back from the store? Oh please. You only met the guy, like, yesterday. Hasn’t even been twenty-four hours. More than certain that the nice front is just a pretense to get into your bikini. Seriously. You need to open your eyes, stop being blind, and focus on what’s important here.”
You swear to God, in the moment of silence following Alyssa's hurt look, you could've heard a pin drop.
>“If it’s too much trouble, then I’ll just make a donation and go.” [Donate and leave]
>“Okay, seriously? That was just plain-out uncalled for.” [Confront Madison]
Things are bad enough as it is with the small crowd gathering around you. And since it looks like that Madison has a little more justification in being with Phi Alpha, it’s probably best to make a strategic withdrawal.
Grabbing your wallet from your back pants pocket, you swiftly pull out a twenty-dollar bill. “I have your number if you want to talk later, Alyssa,” you calmly state as you walk over to the donation jar and stuff the bill into the opening. “I’ll be making my donation now.”
>You made a donation to Alyssa's Charity.
>You now have $442.03 in cash.
You pointedly ignore Madison muttering, “Oh my God, I can’t believe you gave him your number. Why the hell did you give him your number?”
It takes a great amount of self-restraint for you not to shout at the blonde. “Well, it was a pleasure while it lasted. Good luck with your fundraiser.” But just as the crowd parts for you to go, you can’t help but shoot a flat look at the girl that rudely butted in. “Oh, and I guess that it was nice to meet you too, Madison.”
The sand on the beach could not have been drier than your tone of voice. With that, you make your way through the crowd, doing your best to ignore the pointed whispers and looks that you can feel on your back. You’re used to it at the hospital, but it still doesn’t get any easier.
What shitty luck to run into an absolute bitch of a woman. Your mood is definitely soured, and the good day you’ve been having is slowly turning to shit.
Your Mobile starts to vibrate in your pocket. Scowling, you slide the answer button and put it up to your ear. “This better be good-”
“We’ve got something on the magitite sensors!” Victoria’s panicked voice cuts through the speaker. “Fifty meters out from the shoreline, and closing in on the shallows! Whatever it is, it’s big. Really big. Like-”
You can barely hear what she has to use for her comparison. Your head seems to automatically turn on its own towards the distant waters far beyond the surf. There’s something out there. Something that’s decided to make an attack in broad daylight in an area with lots of civilians.
Remember how you said that your day was slowly turning to shit? Nope. Shit just went from zero to a hundred real fucking quick.
The snappy tone of Fitz cuts off the mechanic. “Apsaras says that she’s givin’ it at least a minute before it makes it to shore. You’re the team leader, right? Give us orders, Sawbones, or I’m chargin’ in to get those damn brats out of the water with or without your approval.”
You take off in the direction of the closest entrance to the beach, dodging and weaving through oncoming pedestrian traffic without care or pause for hesitation. As soon as your feet hit the sand, you run…
>…to meet the team.
>…straight into the water.
>What are your orders for your team?
Scents in the water.
Evaluates. Sweat, salt, blood, tears, oil, excrement.
Pauses. Familiar scent.
Scent of fake-earth.
Fake-earth from false liquid.
Images with scent.
Red, light, white.
Memory of bearing teeth.
Not the one.
Smells like the one.
Great Will bright.
Never attack under Great Will.
But tired of waiting.
For one to return.
Will do for now.
Rage only left.
Thirst of vengeance.
Until one bleeds.
I don't think we have any illusions.
Anyway, first order of business is to clear the civilians from the area as soon as possible and NOBODY WHIPS OUT THEIR DEMON until whatever-it-is actually breaks through.
Mind-zapping an entire beach's worth of people is going to be a bitch even if we manage it.
>meet the team
>Start shouting SHARK
He is, but he was Law-aligned in the first SMT. Besides. the only demons serving YHVH directly are the angels, and I don't think any of them would be manifesting as Jaws 2:Electric Bugaloo.
Fitz would be the best option for this given her former employment as a copy. That and MacKay as both are from professions that require you to be able to speak extremely loudly, clearly and with authority.
The courtesies you shout towards the rest of the beach-goers are reflexive at most. “Pardon me…excuse me…move…sorry…out of the way!”
You swear that you hear a screeching noise as you dig your feet in the sand right beside your team. All of them are on high alert, with their COMPs whipped out and faces completely devoid of all amusement. Right now, it’s crunch time and there are lives on the line.
“Okay,” You gasp out as you recover your breath, “Here’s the plan. Get everyone out of the water. I don’t care if you have to scream ‘shark’ to do it. Just do it before anyone gets dragged under. All of us are gonna do it, but Fitz should start it first. Loudest voice, used to be cop, makes sense right?”
“I’m tracking the demon now,” Brady reports, eyes narrowed on his COMP. “It’s coming in from…that direction! Making a beeline straight for…that group of people!”
All of your heads simultaneously turn to the people that he’s pointing to. At least three teenage boys, one mother and child, and what looks like two college girls. They’re all at least deep enough in the surf to the point of the water going above their waists, depending on the tide.
More than deep enough for a demon of sufficient size to yoink them under. Sharks have had less space to attack people. And a demon? All the more dangerous.
“Oh, shit,” you mutter. “Fitz-”
“Oh fuck all kinds of…” Fitz mutters before she takes off towards the beach in a dead sprint. Cupping her hands around her mouth, she roars at the top of her lungs, “SHAARK! SHARK IN THE WATER! GET THE FUCK OUT OF THE WATER! SHARK!”
As she goes on to attract all the attention of the beach-goers, you return your attention to Brady and Victoria. "Brady, keep tracking it. Victoria, you're with me! We're following Fitz into the water-"
>Roll 1d100 +10 Perception
>+10 Bonus to broad daylight
Your sentence is cut off by the sight of a humongous fuck-huge wave bearing down upon the beach. It’s at least a good ten feet tall, something that shouldn’t be possible even at this time with the high tide. But you can see something within the rippling waters…a black shadow that moves within the rushing water.
The group of people Brady was pointing at are caught right in the middle of it. They’re trying to swim back to the shoreline, but the water’s pulling them back too fast. They just simply can’t make it. And even if the lifeguards were just flat-out ignoring Fitz’s cries of ‘SHARK’, they’re able to notice the fact that there are people in clear danger of being swept up by the riptide.
But that’s only the tip of the iceberg. You're not sure whether or not drowning would be the lesser evil, but it doesn't matter any more. Because just as you’re about to get up and join Fitz, all hell breaks loose.
A monster bursts out of the wave and, with a hair-raising roar, descends upon the group as the wave crashes down upon them. They don’t even have time to scream before they vanish under the wave, with neither the swimmers nor the monster anywhere in sight.
You only caught a brief glimpse, but it was enough time for the image of the monster to be seared into your retina. Razor-sharp teeth, claw-like fins, and clammy, green skin are the creature’s defining traits. But what stands out to you the most is its equestrian shape, and the eyes filled with nothing but bloodlust.
>What is your battle plan?
>Gonna take a quick twenty minute break for midnight snack. Will post from mobile if anyone has questions.
How the hell do you fight this thing without barely any aquatic demons.
We need to draw it to us, but that only causes more problems with witnesses.
If we take the fight to him we might just get pulled under or hit by that giant wave.
hey guys, are our guns waterproof? How loud are they when fired underwater?
we gotta sukunda up this guy. Dormina would also help, but I wonder if that's too easy. As if it's too worked up to fall asleep just yet.
Welp, fuck it, there goes plan A. Plan B is "kill it with demons".
I support anon's last battle plan, between Knocker, Apsaras and Jack Frost we've got more than enough Bufu to freeze the fucker in one solid piece. We can even deliver it to HQ for research on what caused it to attack afterwards.
Well, I'm following manga logic here in that we're not "freezing him", we're "freezing the water around him" as it were.
Either way, can't hurt to try that for plan B. Plan C can be trying to shock it with lightning, since it's in the water and we have Pixie.
It might be weak to Force and Fire, but we don't know that in-character and it wouldn't make sense reality-wise to try to blow it away or burn it while it's in the sea.
Alright Fuck it lets do this.
Adrian - Centaur - Gryphon
Fitz - Apsaras - Lham
Brady - Mokoi
Victoria - Gremlin
Centaur and Apsaras Sukunda
Gryphon and Gremlin Sukukaja
Lham and Mokoi get in there and Phys.
This is pretty OVERT so its up to you guys if you want to use this plan.
Whelp, I'm back. So >>45246854 seems to have a good plan, if we take into account >>45246939
for changing up the spells that Mokoi and Lham are using.
>Adrian - Centaur - Gryphon
>Fitz - Apsaras - Lham
>Brady - Mokoi
>Victoria - Gremlin
>Centaur and Apsaras Sukunda
>Gryphon and Gremlin Sukukaja
>Mokoi (Zio), Lham (Rakunda)
This a good plan? Or do you want to have a different plan of action?
That depends. Are the swimmers confirmed KIA?
If yes, proceed with the plan
If no, have Lham go Search and Rescue. The monster should be busy wondering why he is being debuffed to care about a lone demon saving humans.
Centaur does, but he needs to debuff right now. We need that thing slow and us fast. I do agree that if the swimmers are alive and Zio has collateral damage we shouldn't use it though.
There’s a few breathless moments as all of you observe the water before it bursts up…to reveal that some of the swimmers are still alive. Three teenage boys cursing their heads off, one mother holding her screaming child up as high as she possibly can. But there isn’t any sign of the college girls.
Within seconds, the entire beach is in an uproar. Screams of joy abruptly turn into screams of terror as the water around the five swimmers starts turning red. Parents clutch their children, women start screaming, and everyone’s nice day at the beach quickly devolves into a complete and utter clusterfuck.
Whistles start going off like nobody’s business. Lifeguards are scrambling as fast as they can, radioing for help, and shouting for the other beach-goers to get out of the water. It’s a mad scramble to get as far away from the sand as possible.
“Oh my God,” Victoria whispers, “This…this is horrible.”
Brady’s voice is torn between being grim and being panicked. “Aye, it is. Fuck! Adrian! We need a plan!”
>Use plan >>45247285 but switch Lham Dearg to Search and Rescue?
>Have someone call Alger?
>>Use plan >>45247285 but switch Lham Dearg to Search and Rescue?
Y, Lham is humanoid enough for close encounter and rescuing those people take priority.
>Have someone call Alger?
“Okay, okay, okay!” You shout, holding up your hand. You hit a few buttons your COMP and within a few seconds, you summon your demons. Centaur and Gryphon appear and stand beside you, awaiting your orders. “Brady, get Alger on the line and let him know what’s happening. Summon Mokoi and have him use lightning magic as soon as we get the swimmers clear.”
You start running towards the shoreline as fast as you can, shouting orders all the while. “Victoria, I need Gremlin to start casting buffing magic on all of us. He’ll join Centaur and increase our speed.”
As soon as you reach Fitz, she takes off alongside you as you both sprint towards the trapped swimmers. “Apsaras needs to use debuffing magic on the demon, and have Lham Dearg run Search and Rescue. He’s humanoid-looking enough to pass for one.”
“Got it!” She shouts. One manipulation of her COMP later, and her demons are racing alongside her. “Lham Dearg, get the mom; Sawbones, get the teenagers! I’m gonna see if I can find the girls underwater. Don't follow me, ya hear?”
Without giving you any further warning, she jumps into the surf and starts swimming as hard as she can towards the five. You don’t even have time to shout at her before she takes a deep breath and dives into the water.
>Grab the teenagers.
>Help Fitz. (Roll 1d100 Perception to try and find her underwater)
You grimace as you pull your body across the water. Honestly, what the hell was she thinking?! She’s always been headstrong about certain things, but this certainly takes the fucking cake. Ugh. Now she’s swimming through bloody water searching for girls that may or may not be dead.
But you have faith in her. Some measly water horse isn’t going to stop her. She isn’t going to die before you yourself personally kill her for rushing off without your approval and nearly stopping your heart.
A faint yellow light envelops your body, and you feel yourself becoming faster, lighter, and more agile than you would normally be while swimming. It seems that your demons’ magics reached you in spite of your range. Hopefully they reached Fitz as well…
“Up we go!” Lham Dearg roars as he hoists his set of swimmers in his bulging arms. Even though the water’s at least six feet deep at this point, the demon isn’t too bothered. The idiot’s walking through the bloody waters of high tide without a care in the fucking world. Jesus Christ.
It takes you another ten seconds before you reach the three teenagers. They meet you halfway, two of them supporting their third fellow who seems to be semi-conscious. Judging from the head-wound that’s got blood leaking from his temple, he probably took a nasty spill when the tidal wave hit.
“Oh, thank God you’re here!” The closest one to you shouts, struggling to keep his head above the water. “Hey, we need your...your help! Kyle slammed his head against the sandbar."
The other one continues, “We…we can’t hold onto him any longer or else we’re gonna drown! We can get back on our own, but we aren't leaving without him getting out of the water as well!”
>Roll 1d100 + 10 Combat to bring Kyle back to land.
You didn’t have too much water training with Alger, but you’ve had enough to keep the semi-conscious Kyle above the water without too much effort. As soon as you’ve got him in a relatively secure grip, you shout to his friends, “Okay, I’ve got him! Get back to shore, now!”
You’re not quite sure what the name of this particular maneuver is, but you’ve seen it enough during the occasional EMT course you took in college as well as from Camp Cocytus’ swimming instructor. Of course, you would ideally have one of those foam buoyancy things that lifeguards carry around, but since you aren’t a lifeguard…eh, it’s a moot point. You’re strong enough to manage without it.
Still, it takes a while for you to actually pull him back. You estimate that it takes a whole minute for you to pull him back. All the while, you keep checking for the tell-tale dirty blonde of Fitz’s hair to break the surface. Only once do you see her pop up, gasping for breath. But again, you don’t have enough time to shout something before she goes back under.
You resist the urge to call her nasty names and resume your trek back to shore.
As soon as you feel your feet touch the sand, you stand up and drag Kyle through the surf. His friends are quick to reach you as soon as the water reaches below your waist. They take their friend off your hands, thank you from the bottom of their hearts, and stagger towards the exit off the beach.
And Lham Dearg is already heading back into the water for his master without a care in the world, ignoring the lifeguards who are calling for ‘the man in the plaid kilt’ to exit the water. Huh. You didn't believe it until now, but apparently demons can flip people off. Must've picked it up from his master.
Grimacing, you check your own COMP, unearthing it from a pocket within your trunks. Waterproof cases are such a wonderful feature. Your demons went back into the COMP, and you can still feel the effects of the spell coursing through you. Mokoi and Gremelin are the only ones that are still out, passing as stuffed animals dangling out of Victoria’s beach bag.
You give your other two worried teammates a look, shrug wearily, and…
>Sprint back into the water to find Fitz.
>Listen to the lifeguards and pull out.
…that’s right. You still need to shout at Fitz for running off on her own. And that’s something you plan to collecting on.
You gesture towards Victoria. “Buff now!”
For a moment, she looks at you like you’re off your rocker, but she eventually says something in Japanese, probably a profanity given how Brady jumped, before pointing Gremlin’s little hammer in your direction. You don’t even wait for it to finish casting the spell before you sprint back into the water and dive headfirst into the high tide.
The thing about spells? They stack. Repeated uses of buffing spells stack on top of each other, even if you already cast it. Most games you’ve played that have a buff system either have a time limit before it has to be cast again, can’t be stacked on top of another, or a combination of the two.
Apparently the devs never talked to demons before, because they completely got it wrong.
You’re about two feet away from where you last saw Fitz before she emerges from the water in a violent surge of water…atop of the monster.
You take a moment to blink, rub the bloody, iron-tasting water out of your eyes before you squint to make sure you aren’t seeing things.
No, you are not seeing things.
Your teammate, First Name Unknown ‘Fitz’ Fitzgerald, is riding the monster.
Well, it isn’t much riding as much as she’s trying to strangle it from the side. Somewhere in transition, she tore her shirt off, and made it into as best of a strangulation device as she could, leaving nothing on her but a black sports bra. But that’s beside the point! From how wild it’s bucking up and down, she seems to be really giving it a run for its money.
Upon seeing you, she grits her teeth and starts shouting, constantly interrupted by every wild movement of the horse-like demon, “The girls are…down under! Both’re unconscious, and one…lost her arm at the shoulder! Get them…to shore before they drown or bleed out. I’ve got...the situation…under…control!”
> “I’m not about to let you be martyred!”(Take out pistol, line up a shot)
>[1d100 + 30 ; +10 Combat, +20 due to 2 levels Sukukaja]
>“Don’t you dare die on me!” (Get the girls)
You make a snap decision.
Pixie and Gryphon appear above the water, hovering above you. You give them their orders, with Pixie supporting Fitz and Gryphon buffing both of you once more to boost your agility. As soon as you see them going after the horse-demon, you shout to Fitz, “Don’t die on me!” before you dive under the water.
There. The water’s murky as hell, and it isn’t helping that there’s blood all over the goddamn place, but you can see them. Two girls in bikinis in apparent states of unconsciousness, just floating in the water without any signs of cognition. The source of all the blood is the jagged stump of the one of the girl’s right shoulder, violently mangled and pumping vitae into the water.
Fucking hell. And you don’t even have a proper tourniquet on you. Healing magic is out of the question since that’s just gonna raise more questions that solve anything. But you could worry about that later. You’ve gotta get them to the surface as fast as you can.
Securing the girls in your arms, you kick as hard as you can as you swim towards the surface. Within seconds after taking in a few gulps of fresh air, you tear your shirt off and improvise a tourniquet to stop the girls’ grievous wound from bleeding out. The white cotton of your shirt quickly turns red as it absorbs the flow of blood, but its considerably slower than it was in the water.
Still, they aren’t breathing. And right now, getting air back into their lungs is top priority.
Terrible shame that mouth-to-mouth isn’t effective while standing up or treading water. With that said, Heimlich is.
It takes you a few thrusts underneath her sternum, but you eventually manage to get the girl without too many injuries spitting out seawater and gasping for breath. That is, only for a few seconds before she passes out in your arms. Still breathing, though, and that’s good enough for you.
You manage to flag down Lham Dearg, who approaches you with a curious look on his face. “Get these girls to the shoreline,” you order him. “Your master wants them out of the combat zone, understand?”
You’re unsure whether or not he’ll obey you, but he nods and starts making the journey back. Seems like you left a good impression with him back at Camp Cocytus.
It’s now certainly easier to tread water without having to worry about two…eugh, you feel dirty saying this but…dead weights holding you down-
>Roll 1d100 + 20 to DODGE (-40 treading water, +30 3 Levls of Sukakaja, + 10 Combat)
Phew. 71 ain't bad I think. The Kelpie should still have Sukunda's on it from Asparas and Centaur too so that should help.
There’s no way you would’ve been able to dodge the demon’s lunge attack without the aid of your demon’s magic. It was so damn fast. One moment, you hear it from a distance and then, VOOSH! It’s trying to take a bite out of your arm. You barely managed to avoid the gnashing teeth that snicker-snack dangerously close to your elbow.
The wake of its charge sends you reeling backwards in the water, but it isn’t anything too difficult for you to recover from. Within a few seconds, you’re stable and back to treading water normally. But with that said, the demon’s making its rounds for another charge, and in spite of Fitz trying her damnest to pull and squeeze her impromptu garrote as tight as she could, the monster seems strangely keen on taking you out.
You have time to act before it charges, though.
>Have Fitz get clear? Y/N
>Shoot gun? Y/N [1d100 + 30 ; +10 Combat, +20 due to 2 levels Sukukaja]
>Pixie should use…Zio/Wind Buffet/Dia (Fitz)
>Gryphon should use…Bouncing Claw/Lunge
>Fitz will independently make her attacks/commands.
Would it be possible for both Centaur and Grphyon to stop the monster's momentum with lunges, then while its stopped/slowed give toss Fitz our gun and have her unload the mag into the back of the demon's head?
>>Pixie should use…Zio/Wind Buffet/Dia (Fitz)
get him to grapple the kelpie down from below the waters
We'll keep him struggling for this round, then unleash some Dormina so it's actually safe for Fitz to get clear.
They've been struggling for a few minutes already.
Anon, it's getting pretty late over here. Any other time, I would be happy to try and either explain why that isn't possible or try to make it fit within the rules of my established/homebrew stuff, but right now, I'm really tired.
Humor me please and roll the dice/make decisions if you're so inclined.
You don’t say anything. All you do is give your Gryphon a look and a gesture, and it’s already tearing through the skies. It’s talons outstretched, they catch the morning sunlight as they slash once, twice, three times at the demon. It rears back in pain, roaring at the sudden intrusion of the avian predator.
Now. “Fitz, get off!”
She doesn’t hesitate or ignore your order this time. Letting go of her ruined shirt, she kicks off of the demon’s hide. Within a few seconds, she’s already put at least five feet between her and the demon, and gaining more ground from it.
From what you remember from your high school physics class, salt water tends to be a pretty good conductor of electricity. With that said, with such a large surface area, such as the Atlantic Ocean, it tends to hit a concentrated area, and then harmlessly discharge across the water.
Pity that the demon doesn’t know that.
The indignant roar gives way to a neigh of pain as a blast of lightning strikes it directly in the face. Reeling back and bitting, chomping, hissing, the demon recovers and breathes, hard. And it doesn't even have time to recover before you plant a .45 slug right into its left eye.
Alas, you only but grazed the monster.
It casts a baleful look towards you, no one else, before opening its mouth and discharging an unnaturally dense fog around the area. It billows and completely obscures any sight that you can see for a good twenty feet. The last sight of the thing is the complete and utter hatred within it's eyes.
By the time you manage to wave the stuff out of your face, the only sign that there had been a demon attack was the charred skin that Pixie’s lightning spell blasted off nonchalantly floating in the water. There’s also no sign of surface disturbances or any other kind of movement.
The demon got away.
>Swim to Fitz, reconnoiter.
>Swim directly to shore.
Pain. Agony. Hurts. Body hurts.
Pain is good. Indication of life.
Pain is good. Focuses hatred.
Tempers anger. Lessons learned from pain.
Red, light, white. Threads of sunlight.
Bearers of fake-earth scent.
Not genuine, not real.
Angry, vengeful. Acted in haste.
Punished for it.
Red, light, white. Protected by former.
Strong, master of demons.
Not frail like former meat.
Hate it with everything.
Hate the protector. Fake-earth lingers.
Clings to flesh, to meat.
Close to threads of sunlight.
Fresh scent. Threads of sunlight.
Very close. Closest ever been.
No more lurking. No more instinct.
Smart and cunning triumph.
Long hunt worth waiting.
For vengeance, for justice.
Righting wrongs, restoring balance.
This boss isn't going to go down on the first day of the job, anons! It would make for bad first case. Swollen egos, overconfidence, etc.
Anywho, that's it for tonight. Gonna hit the hay. Feeling burned out. Three days straight of threads. Whew. Take care of leveling up and aftermath next time.
Did you know? Pixie evolves to High Pixie at Lv. 10!
>Did you know? Pixie evolves to High Pixie at Lv. 10!
Does she get a kimono or blue spikey hair? This is only minorly important.
Thanks for running.
Only if you want her to.
Gonna archive it in a few minutes.
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Hope y'all have a good night/morning/day/afternoon wherever you based anons are.
>Only if you want her to.
She should get a nurse's outfit. Cause you know, doctor and all. Also that theorycrafting last session about making her our assistant in Combat medic duties.
Blue Cross. Distinct enough to pick out as both medical and demonic, while covert enough for it to be seen in public without a problem.
Just stick a little hat with a blue cross on pixie as a test run.