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    A Date and a Little Light Robbery

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 433
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 1,137,963

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    A Date and a Little Light Robbery - Page 2 Empty Re: A Date and a Little Light Robbery

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 31st August 2021, 7:13 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    It took a moment for Patricia to get her bearings, and all the while Mercury simply leaned over her looking pleased as punch. The woman looked this way and that, taking in the blatantly adult setting, before commenting rather casually about being kidnapped and waking up in a sex dungeon. When she stated her surprise that she hadn’t received a paddling, Mercury’s grin widened. She opened her mouth to say something, but Vandrad cut her off at the quick. He explained it wasn’t the most eloquent of plans, but it was more than enough to suit the purpose of what they needed. Plus, he doubted that the Dread Masters would think to look for him there, which had been one of Mercury’s biggest points of argument when she’d originally pitched the location… though the prince stood by his opinion that Mercury simply wanted to be there just to be there.

    The Xocili smirked at her companion with a flirty and suggestive look. “Don’t act like you assume I haven’t been here before. It’s embarrassing. You know damn well what I wanted was to find an excuse to get you in here to watch you fidget in annoyance.” Finally awake enough to join in conversation, Patricia sat up and lauded the choice in locale and confirmed that a place like this was indeed the last place they would think to look. At least, when it came to Vandrad. They had studied Mercury enough to know it was right up her alley, but they would assume if she was kidnapping Patricia to bring her to Vandrad, the prince would never agree to such a degenerate meeting place -- which made it perfect. The doctor asked about the listening devices, to which Vandrad confirmed that Mercury had patted Patricia down and dealt with them. Mercury’s monitors picked up a slight spike in the woman’s pulse and she cast a devious little wink in Patty’s direction.

    Electing to ignore that, the doctor congratulated her on a heist well pulled and extended a hand to officially introduce herself, claiming to be a fan of the Silver Wolf ace’s handiwork -- since there was no reason to pretend like she hadn’t been forced to observe Mercury during this entire debacle. The lavender haired woman returned the handshake. “Yes, I’ve quite been enjoying looking over some of your own work. I may have stolen more than just your hidden files from that computer. Couldn’t help myself. Mythal and Seri send their regards, by the way.” Raising her other hand, she offered the woman a fresh cup of hot coffee. “Here. I promise this one isn’t spiked with anything except sweet, sweet caffeine.” It wouldn’t be from the store where Patricia frequented, but considering it was a fresh homemade cup brewed from rare beans that Mercury had ground and prepared herself, she was certain the doctor would find it quite refreshing.

    Before they could get too far into pleasantries, Vandrad steered them back on topic to remind them that they were on a time limit. Mercury rolled her eyes. “Always business with this one. No fun, not even in a place built for a good time.” Stepping away to give Patricia some room, Mercury hopped up on top of a low sitting cage that was against a wall, making herself comfortable. A loud cawing noise filled the air as Bandit came down from his perch to land on Mercury’s shoulder as she pulled up one of the listening devices she’d confiscated from Patricia’s person and started picking at it with a couple tools.

    As she did her thing, she did what she did best and sat back to listen as Vandrad and Patricia spoke to one another. The doctor asked if there was more information they were looking for, and he informed her it was actually the opposite; that they were wanting to fill her in with some of the things they had discovered thanks to the message she had managed to get them. Vandrad relayed his relation to Marka Ragnos and then explained about the Ark magic he had inherited, as well as their assumption that the Dread Masters might be after the magic for themselves. Mercury wasn’t even looking at them until Patty casually tried to mansplain the prince’s own magic to him, correcting him on the name of his abilities. Mercury glanced up briefly with an expression that was half entertained, half unimpressed as if to say, “Really..?” before shaking her head and going back to tinkering with a small snort.

    Patricia explained a bit how the Engineer was able to graft some of Hasan’s magic onto her, a process that had apparently only been temporary. It was a mixture of technology and magic that was capable of manipulating ethernano and locking them in place. Once that was accomplished, he aligned it with the intended host at an atomic level. It did not last forever, though, and once it had faded it seemed they had not attempted to reapply the magic as Vandrad had stopped interacting with Patricia for a time. Mercury filed away all sorts of mental notes about the description of the Engineer’s process. While she highly doubted Vandrad or Patricia would approve of her utilizing such abilities herself, Mercury would have to start working on trying to unravel the process if they had any hope of finding a way to counter it in the future, should it be necessary.

    After she remarked on how Vandrad spoke as if they knew the Master’s true goal, the prince confirmed that they did, explaining the history of the Dread Masters and what their mission since the dawn of humanity had always been. It was a truth that horrified Patricia to the point where she seemed to nearly slip into a state of denial upon first hearing it. “That’s the gist of it,” Mercury confirmed putting one of her tools away in her purse and pulling out another. “Bit hypocritical if you ask me. One long road to becoming the very thing you started out to destroy, but apparently gods and demons are just fine as long as the Masters are in charge of them.”

    “Honestly, the Masters themselves seem a bit boring. Unoriginal, I think would be the more apt description. Everyone in the universe is always fighting to be top dog like it means anything. Hell, even science is an ever moving state of evolution as the matter in the universe strives to reach perfection only to find itself constantly falling short of its own undiscovered truths. Power for the sake of power is such a profoundly derivative concept. This one though..”

    She held up the listening device, giving it a meaningful shake as a dark and dangerous smirk crossed her face. “This one I want to know more about. He’s not from Earthland, so I imagine he has no vested interest in the religious minutia of this world like the Masters do, which means he’s got some other goal in working with them. I’ve come across quite a bit of alien technology over the years, but this was a new one. I rarely spend more than five or ten minutes getting what I want out of a computer. That mainframe had me working for close to twenty. I built a schematic for it while I was there and have rebuilt a copy of it in my own lab so I can test its capabilities and limitations. Impressive stuff. I’m greatly looking forward to paying him back for that trap with a little surprise of my own. What can you tell me about him that wasn’t already in your message?”

    WORDS: 1276/9129 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 487
    Guild : Fairy Tail
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 1,309,025

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    A Date and a Little Light Robbery - Page 2 Empty Re: A Date and a Little Light Robbery

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 1st September 2021, 10:35 am

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    A Date and a Little Light Robbery - Page 2 RJtajUnz_o
    "I never doubted that you had been here before. I look around at all these perverted toys and can’t help but think that they are right up your alley,” Vandrad remarked, deciding to ignore her quip about wanting to get him in the dungeon. Agatha and Ruzatz had been kind enough to offer the use of their guildhall as a place to take Patricia but the prince had hardly expected that the designated room would be their pleasure dungeon. He was quite sure that Mercury had a hand in ensuring that this was where they wound up, for the sheer sake of watching him look disgusted. It was for that reason alone that he held back most of his snide glances and glares, wanting to keep her from getting her fill of amusement as much as possible.

    “Whatever the case may be, it was a smart choice of locale. Nice to know I have good taste, considering I see some that I possess myself,” Wanda remarked casually, taking a brief look around before hopping up and moving onto introducing herself to Mercury, seamlessly drifting from topic to topic without pause or issue. The Silver Wolf mage returned the courtesy and stated that she had been enjoying looking over the doctor’s work, admitting to taking more than just the hidden files. She also took a moment to pass on the regards from the Rune Knights. “Well someone of your level of expertise, I hardly imagined you would filter yourself simply to my hidden files. I’m honored to have you look at them in that case. And I’m glad to hear that the Field Marshal and Director are doing well and are, apparently, in the loop. They seem far more reliable and honorable than others within the martial ranks of Fiore.” Mercury offered her a new cup of hot coffee, assuring her that the only thing it was filled with was normal caffeine. “I should thank you; I don’t know how long I was out but I haven’t had restful sleep like that in years. I feel like a brand new woman. And now you’re offering more coffee. You should consider yourself lucky, Vandrad, for having such a helpful partner,” the doctor commented as she took a sip from the drink and hummed pleasantly at its taste.

    "Just wait until you get to know her more. You might regret those words,” Vandrad forewarned Patricia, the only one he would give. Mercury lamented that the prince was always eager to get down to brass tacks but Patricia was amenable to it; after all, she had studied Vandrad enough to know how he operated. As the Silver Wolf mage hopped up on a cage and began fiddling with one of the bugs that Patricia had on her, Vandrad and Patricia exchanged information back and forth. It wasn’t until Vandrad outlined the endgame for the Dread Masters and Patricia looked well and truly shocked that Mercury spoke again, speaking what most of them most likely were already thinking. The Dread Masters wanting to ascend to godhood by killing other gods and demons was about as hypocritical as anyone could get but one would never argue that the lust of power made one think straight.

    Mercury wasn’t impressed by the Masters overall. Their goal and their actions were something that had been repeated time and time again; it was practically the baseline for evolution. But what did intrigue her was the Engineer, as she held up the listening device. She knew that he wasn’t from Earthland and, as such, wasn’t part or altogether involved in the doctrine of the Dread Masters. He had his own goal for which he was using his allies to achieve. The Silver Wolf mage had run into a lot of alien technology but nothing like what the Engineer created. She admitted that it had taken her a whole twenty minutes to get into the mainframe and it had impressed her so much that she had rebuilt a version of it for herself so she could further diagnose its abilities. She was eager to meet the alien, if only to repay him for the trap that Patricia had deflected and asked the doctor if there were other details she could pass on. “My apologies, I was distracted by the revelation that it took you only twenty minutes to crack into the mainframe. It took me nearly half a year to get through the firewalls without raising any kind of alarm. Beautiful and brilliant. You and I should discuss this further; I’m quite interested to hear your methods and learn from your expertise.”

    "Doctor. The details,” Vandrad spoke up, redirecting her attention back to Mercury’s question.

    “Ah yes, my mistake. The Engineer is a pseudonym, obviously. Hasan’s is as well; I’ve managed to trap some audio recordings from sensory equipment and others have called him by other names. Everyone seems to know him under a different name. Anyways, the Engineer always wears a helmet around me that completely covers his head. In fact, he has a full bodysuit that he wears to disguise his entire form around me and others he works with,” Patricia reached into her lab coat pocket and pulled out a notepad, complete with a pencil. She flipped it open and quickly scribbled onto it and then turned it around so they could see. Being a magically enchanted pencil, she was able to color it as she drew it, completing a full image for Vandrad and Mercury to see. “With that said, there was one instance where an experiment went awry -- there was a small detonation in the lab. No one got hurt but a portion of his suit was damaged near his shoulder and neck. Before it repaired itself, I was able to catch a quick glance at his skin; it was the color of ash and the look of it was… well, alien. It was textured in a way that human skin isn’t and while I know we have anthropomorphic creatures on Earthland, this didn’t seem like it. He has a human-like stature and stands at about six foot two.” She took a moment to sketch the memory, drawing the Engineer’s suit with the damage and the ashy skin beneath it.

    "What about Hasan? Anything about him that sticks out?”

    “Extremely stylized hair, usually is wearing a professional outfit save for three times when he was wearing somethin akin to a karate gi. Silver eyes, good looking, charming personality and a silver tongue to boot. He also has a pair of earrings on; gold metal with emeralds attached at the bottom of the loops. He seems a bit like mild management; he oversees projects and teams but he still answers to someone or multiple others above him.” Yet again Patricia flipped the page and drew a sketch of Hasan and then turned it back for the two of them to see. Vandrad’s eyes widened a good amount as he started into the face of Caecilius Moriarty, the man that had gone out of his way to introduce himself at the Christmas feast his family had hosted. Patricia saw the look and could tell that Vandrad recognized the face. “You know him?”

    "Bastard snuck into my family’s Christmas party. He even said that he’d been hoping to meet me,” the prince said between bared teeth. "How dare he come to my home and around my family.”

    “I don’t know much more about him than what I’ve said. And the Engineer is even more mysterious. They have me working on a magical device that can identify and track magical signatures over a long distance. I wonder, with their interest in you, if that isn’t a means of keeping an eye on you without having to have someone like me following after you.” Patricia said as she put the notepad away.

    "How have they observed us so far?” Vandrad asked, doing his best to push his anger back down.

    “I don’t know. After our second meeting, they told me that the bait had been planted and I was kept in the dark. I assume they have mechanical devices similar to the bugs they placed on me. But they want a method of knowing where you are at all times, no matter the distance,” Patricia explained.

    "Can’t they just do that with technology as well?”

    “Absolutely but technology can be discovered, found out. They want something they can use in one place that can track you and you’d never be aware of it. It’s almost like a web of magical sensory. Here, let me…” She started to reach into her pocket and paused, realizing that drawing it wasn’t as good a visual. Instead she turned and walked over to the gallery of presented toys and grabbed too long and impressive toys. She walked over and handed one to Vandrad and then walked a short distance away from him. “Okay so naturally, as a wizard, we’re able to sense magical signatures. Vandrad, could you hold that in front of you please?”

    Begrudgingly, the prince held the toy forward and in front of him. “Thank you. So depending on how strong you and your magic are, your sense gets larger but even then, it has a limit. So me over here,” she said, now holding up her own toy. “Would be beyond your senses, hypothetically speaking. Now if you have masterful control of your magic, you’re able to hide it and prevent detection. Now this…” she said, reaching into her pocket and extracting her iLac. She held it up pointing at Vandrad. “This is the device I’m working on. With it, I’d be able to identify your magical signature and no matter how you mask it or how far away you are from me or it, it’ll be able to pinpoint your exact position.”

    A truly horrifying, though beneficial creation. "Well that’s very interesting but what is this that I’m holding?” Vandrad asked, referring to the toy in her showcase.

    “Oh. Nothing. I just wanted a picture of you holding one for my own amusement,” Patricia stated, having already snapped a picture on her iLac. The prince, disgusted, tossed the toy back in the general direction it had come from. She offered a small, wry smile. “Give me a break, Vandrad -- I’ve been well out of things to keep my spirit up. At least this will make me smile when things get… harder.”

    "Ugh, you’re as insufferable as she is,” Vandrad said, scoffing and sneering.

    “I’ll take that as a compliment.”






    Words: 1757/12,301  | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 433
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 1,137,963

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    A Date and a Little Light Robbery - Page 2 Empty Re: A Date and a Little Light Robbery

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 1st September 2021, 6:55 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Mercury gave Vandrad a cheeky grin. “They were certainly up something,” she remarked about the toys.

    There was a bit of back and forth before Mercury voiced her thoughts on the Dread Masters, and then more specifically the Engineer. For once in her life she hadn’t really been meaning to brag but she had captivated Patricia nonetheless. The doctor admitted it had taken her fully half a year just to get past the firewalls safely, so the knowledge that Mercury had raided the computer within twenty minutes was mind boggling to her. She expressed the desire to have a more in depth conversation about it later, hoping to get a chance to study her techniques. “I’m sure I could teach you a few tricks, sure.”

    Before they could get too far off topic, Vandrad insisted that Patricia answer the question regarding the Engineer. The doctor explained that she didn’t know his real name, nor did she know Hasan’s. She had managed to capture a few audio clips, and knew that many people called Hasan by various different names, which meant that he had several aliases. As for the Engineer, he always wore a full head to toe suit complete with a helmet that completely covered his face from view. Patricia even showed them what it looked like, pulling out a magical notebook and drawing a quick sketch.

    Mercury zoomed her gaze in on the picture, taking in the dark suit with a helmet so reflective it might as well have been a mirror. Once again, this Engineer proved himself quite the creative master. Nothing about the design of the suit matched any cultures or people that she knew of, so whatever it was, it was uniquely built by him. The Xocili was about to ask how she knew for sure that the man was alien when Patty explained that an experiment gone wrong had partially blown off a portion of his helmet once, allowing her to see some of the grey skin beneath. That bit of information certainly helped narrow things down. More than half the list of alien species she knew of were removed from her internal list of candidates that the Engineer could be as she crossed off races that were incapable or unlikely to sport ashen colored skin. It still left a huge list… but progress was progress.

    As she ran some calculations in her head, Vandrad asked about Hasan. Patricia gave a brief description of him, one that honestly didn’t sound too different from Vandrad himself outside of the height and charm. Her guesstimation was that he was mid level management in the organization, high enough to be treated with respect but still not the final authority. Patricia drew another image that her magical pencil allowed her to craft with more accuracy. Mercury’s brows rose a little. He was handsome, she had to admit it. She was so busy analyzing him and committing his face to memory that she didn’t even notice the look on Vandrad’s face until Patricia pointed it out.

    The prince had met Hasan already… at the Christmas party. “What? When?” Mercury blinked at him in surprise. She had been right next to Vandrad for most of the night, save for a couple times she had snuck off to go play around with Gren and Santa. It must not have been a very long or inspiring conversation since Vandrad had never mentioned it to her, but it was still shocking to hear. Then her own anger set in. The du Wolffs were the closest thing she’d ever had to a family, and the knowledge that the Dread Masters were using even them as a means to get to Vandrad fill her veins with a boiling poison. If this hadn’t been personal before, it certainly was now.

    Patty went on to explain that she didn’t really know a whole lot more about either Hasan or the Engineer themselves, but she did reveal the latest project they had her working on: a device that would allow them to track magical signatures without interference over long distances. Such a device, she claimed, would let them track Vandrad without needing to rely on keeping someone like Patricia near him. Vandrad asked what methods they had used to track the two of them so far, to which the doctor readily stated that she didn’t know. All she knew was that a plan had been set in place and from there she’d had to make assumptions.

    “If they were using mechanical surveillance, it would have to be pretty advanced for me to not have noticed by now. So far from what I’ve seen of his work, if anyone could pull something like that over my eyes it would be this Engineer… but even then, it’s highly unlikely. Not impossible, but unlikely.” Emerald eyes flicked to Vandrad meaningfully, the prince knowing the truth of what she was and how easy it was for her to pick up on such things due to her various sensors and radars.

    Vandrad asked more about possible surveillance options, to which Patricia extrapolated further on what was being worked on. Finding mere words to not be quite enough, however, she opted to utilize objects in the room as visual aids. Try as she might to maintain her anger over the safety of the du Wolffs and thus what little sense of professionalism Mercury ever had, she couldn’t help the small snort that rippled from her nostrils at the sight of Vandrad holding onto the toy that Patricia had offered him. She had no idea what the objects had to do with what she was trying to explain, but it didn’t really matter to her as she broke into a small giggle fit over it. When Vandrad himself questioned the use of the object and Patricia explained that it added nothing to her explanation outside of entertainment, the dam of Mercury’s amusement finally broke and she laughed out loud. “We’re keeping her,” she informed the prince.

    Getting back to working on the listening device that she was tweaking, Mercury continued the questioning. “Alright so, you don’t know much about Hasan’s or the Engineer’s personal identities. What about other details? Like, what have you picked up about any of their mundane habits? Personal interests? Pet peeves? Even the most unassuming observation could be useful. I’d also be interested in hearing what other sort of information they have on us that you’re aware of, stuff we haven’t already discussed yet.” If she and Vandrad were going to start working on a plan of approach, it would greatly help to have some insight on what the Dread Masters were already privy to about them both.

    WORDS: 1117/10,246 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Vandrad Ragnos
    Vandrad Ragnos

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Traveller of the Multiverse
    Position : None
    Posts : 487
    Guild : Fairy Tail
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 1,309,025

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Energy Monarch
    Second Magic: Ark of the Dread Masters
    Third Magic:

    A Date and a Little Light Robbery - Page 2 Empty Re: A Date and a Little Light Robbery

    Post by Vandrad Ragnos 2nd September 2021, 12:03 pm

    There’s no fair or unfair in battle.
    ( There is only victory or in your case, defeat. )
    A Date and a Little Light Robbery - Page 2 RJtajUnz_o
    There was something deeply upsetting and insulting to know that an enemy had infiltrated his family’s home, had pretended to be merely a market goon and earned praise both from the duchess and seemingly the rest of the family. The very vivid memory, which had been practically cast aside in Vandrad’s mind, came swimming to the surface as he stared at the picture of the man that had called himself Caecilius Moriarty. A lord, of all things, or so he claimed. The prince had felt something was wrong with him from the moment he laid eyes on him but he hadn’t gone very deep. He had simply assumed that the man was some kind of market swindler, trying to convince Themesycia to buy into a short-sighted scheme to make money fast. Yet he had said that he had been particularly interested in meeting Vandrad, hadn’t he? He had been that close, well within distance to vaporize him before he ever became a threat.

    He cursed silently, once again wishing he possessed abilities like Mythal. His adoptive brother could sense intent and lies, picking up on magic at its basest level. If the Darkness Slayer had been about, he may have picked up on something but he was busy enjoying the party, as was his right. It was like this Caecilius or Hasan or whatever his real name was had planned out to skim the surface of danger. It was infuriating and impressive in equal measure, which frankly just served to make the prince angrier. Mercury spoke up a moment later, honestly surprised that he hadn’t mentioned it before. "During the Christmas party. While you were getting to know potential siblings of mine,” he cast her a glance, somehow able to carefully phrase his words in a politically correct manner despite his flared anger. "He had been conversing with my mother and she took the time to introduce him to me. I’d felt something in my gut about him but ignored it, far too distracted at the time. I simply assumed he was a businessman and I hardly have the stomach to deal with earnest ones, let alone ones playacting. He called himself Lord Caecilius Moriarty.”

    “Yet another pseudonym it seems. As I said, he has a list of names that he is addressed by and I’ve no idea which one is his true name. I imagine we won’t know if and when he decides to reveal it. What I do know is he is quite bold and confident. Despite having agents working around the world for him, he is willing and able to deploy into the field, whatever the situation or need. I believe he enjoys the work, which would normally be admirable. The only thing he doesn’t partake in is the scientific experimentation and application. It seems he doesn’t quite have a mind for magical theory. He leaves that effort for the Engineer,” Patricia explained a bit about Hasan, the details she had observed and pinned during her time with them.

    Mercury was quick to interject that any kind of mechanical surveillance would have been something she’d have picked up on. There was a chance if it was advanced enough it could have gone unnoticed but she hadn’t seen proof of any such creation yet. Patricia nodded with her. “I believe you, based on the limited exposure I’ve had to your abilities. It is most likely some kind of magic spell that allows them to record live feed through a semi-ocular magical conductor. I had wondered if there was someone within the organization with that ability. I’ve been shown feeds before that seemed suspicious in their angle, as they were like to be destroyed. Perhaps a high range spell that observes and records from a distance, like telescopic magic…” For a moment she got lost in her own musings before she shook herself out of it. As she went on to explain what they’d had her working on, Vandrad was curious and wanted to know more.

    That’s when the doctor decided to utilize the toys around them as a visual presentation. In truth, they weren’t really required but given her moodset and the fact that she was able to act normally again, she was feeling… cheeky. She had the prince take hold of one of the toys while she used another one and semi-used them to explain what the intent of her device was and how it could be utilized. It wasn’t until Vandrad asked the purpose of his held item that she revealed it wasn’t really for anything and she just wanted to record the memory for her own amusement. Mercury laughed out loud and insisted that they were keeping her. Despite herself, Patricia smiled a bit wider as Vandrad huffed and grumbled. "How is that even funny?” he demanded, looking between the two women.

    “Because you’re a staunch, close-minded individual when it comes to sexual situations and your partner is a bold, forward and sexually confident woman that finds enjoyment in your uncomfortability of the topic,” the doctor explained with a shrug. “And I hate to break it to you, Vandrad, but all brilliant scientists are massive perverts as well. So much pressure and tension was placed upon us to change the world with our experimentation and discoveries that we like to let loose every once in a while. The image of the priggish prince from Bellum holding a phallus the size of a sword is too good of an opportunity not to record. Don’t fret; I won’t share it with anyone else. Except Mercury, if we all manage to survive this ordeal. But even then, my first thought won’t be about displaying this debasing image; it’ll be upon my own self-indulgence. It has been years since I was properly laid.”

    As Vandrad rolled his eyes and crossed his arms in annoyance, Mercury circled back to questions about the Engineer and Hasan. She wanted to know more frivolous details about the two of them, observations that Patricia might have witnessed and stored away without believing them important. She also wanted to know what kind of information they had on both Vandrad and Mercury. “I appreciate your thoroughness,” Patricia replied as she looked over at Mercury. “I told you a bit about Hasan. I can also tell you that he has an accent; Ca-Elum from the sound of it but not quite. I’d say it was an inherited accent from a family member rather than from living in the country.”

    "He did say his parents had passed on their accent at the party,” Vandrad chimed in.

    “He has a ring on his finger, here,” she said, lifting her right hand and pointing to her index finger. “Silver in nature, no brand or emblem on it, though it is ornate. He plays with it when he’s thinking; turns it around the digit. Hasan doesn’t say a lot while also simultaneously managing to talk a lot. He manages to keep the focus on you and deflects questions about himself with ease. And nothing bothers him -- even when projects are delayed, he understands and moves along. He most likely internalizes his anger and releases it somewhere else, if at all. To be honest, I worry for the day he does get angry; it may be dangerous to all those around him.”

    “The Engineer believes himself to be the smartest person in the room. He talks down to everyone and he is quick to put you down if you make an observation or voice an opinion he does not agree with. Unfortunately being burdened with a high intelligence brings along the ego with it, something I too struggle with, especially when around him. He is cruel and cutting with his words and his actions and holds no qualms about experimentation that would be considered illegal. In fact, I think he gets a sick satisfaction from watching humans be used as guinea pigs. Even with the mask, you can almost sense that he is smiling as he watches them be poked and prodded. He’s also a stickler for time; he starts his workday precisely at seven in the morning and ends it at four in the afternoon. Once he leaves the lab, I don’t know where he goes. Despite working with him longer, I know very little about him and I believe that’s intentional. He wears his outfit to hide himself and most likely suppresses most of his personality or character traits. He doesn’t trust me beyond completing lab work and I suppose he’s right to do so.”

    “As for information that concerns you, well, they’ve observed you for a while. They know how long you’ve worked together. They didn’t believe that Vandrad would have continued a partnership with you, Mercury, if only due to clashing personalities. But they underestimated both of you, it seems. It’s hard to breach the magical defenses of guildhalls so whatever has transpired with Fairy Tail or Silver Wolf’s walls has gone unnoticed. But beyond that, they’ve observed a decent amount, whether it’s in frozen tunnels or in a desert,” she explained. “But they don’t know exactly how proficient you are with technology, Mercury. Identifying your magic has been a challenge. And they are aware of that Vandrad has accessed the Ark, the magic that they’re seeking.”

    "So is that what they want me for? To try and take the Ark from me?”

    Patricia shook her head. “I don’t know. It was a miracle I even heard about the Ark; I don’t know anything about it. But I know that you showing access to it moved their plans up a step and that’s about it.”

    "You mentioned a magical means of observation. Is it possible they could be watching us here? We can block technology but perhaps nothing of that level of magic,” Vandrad spoke up once more.

    “No, I believe you picked your location well. Guesstimating by the vast array of toys that many could consider exorbitant, I’d say we’re in the basement of someone who is quite open about their sexual interests. There’s also the near-muted noise from above, which sounds like… a group of people, perhaps eight or nine. There’s also the slightest hint of mugginess in the air; a wet humidity that comes from being close to hot springs. I’d say there’s an eighty six percent chance that we’re located in the guildhall for the independent guild, the Lusty Titans.”

    Vandrad was honestly surprised she had picked up so many details, as well as knowing about the guild itself. "Impressive, doctor.”

    “The Lusty Titans guild has been under observation for a long time. Ruzat and Agatha de la Cavalleria are of great interest to the Dread Masters but they refuse to act. They believe he’s one of an elite group of demons that are too dangerous to attack frivolously. Do you know them personally?”

    The prince sighed softly. "Unfortunately. They are… allies.” He was hesitant to call them friends, even if he possessed a small infatuation for Agatha. They still represented a crude and obscene lifestyle that he didn’t subscribe to, even if Mercury did.

    “Fascinating. If it is at all possible, I would love to meet them officially someday. Despite his perceived demonic nature, Ruzatz has achieved a lot of great deeds during his time as the Lusty Titan’s guildmaster. And Agatha is perhaps one of the most captivating entertainers to ever have existed.” Patricia mused to herself a bit before she turned her attention back to Vandrad and Mercury. “There is one other detail I feel I must mention. I have hidden my Arc of Time magic from them. In fact, that was one of the reasons they chose me to take on Hasan’s Ethernano Manipulation magic -- they believed I was magicless. When we were trapped in the tarot card realm, we went unobserved. It’s for that reason that I chose to use it on you, else we would have been in terrible danger. I believe if they knew, the Engineer would attempt to take it from me and utilize it for his own purposes.”

    "I remember you telling me that it could be used to advance my magic to a point it would be in the future. Can it be used for other means? For example, could it be used to advance a memory so it can gain knowledge from the future or perhaps hasten a project?” Vandrad hadn’t considered that, as her possession of Energy Monarch had interested him far more. But now that she had brought it up, he was concerned that her natural magical ability may be more dangerous.

    She shook her head. “Being able to advance someone’s magic is relatively easy because it’s just growing the magical core. Since I can’t predict a person’s memories from the future, it would be impossible to evolve one’s mind to that point. I suppose it could be used for projects. I’ve heard that it can be used to reverse the flow of time as well, though that would come at the cost of the user’s life. As it exists within me, it has its limits. But there is no telling what the Engineer could mutate it into if he extracted it. I will continue to keep it hidden but I wanted you to be aware that it may cause a complication if it’s found out,” Patricia explained.

    "That doesn’t matter. Now that we’ve managed to impede their observation of you, you can lay low. There’s no need to return.”

    Once more she shook her head. “Not an option. The Dread Masters still have plans and projects in motion -- things that I had a hand in. Mercury made this kidnapping as realistic as possible, enough so that my escape can be believable and when I return, I can resume my responsibilities. They are a danger and I have successfully infiltrated them, enough that I can continue gathering information. And now that I know that you all are working on the outside to bring them out of hiding, I know my role as a mole is more important than ever. I appreciate the offer, Vandrad, but I have to stay.”

    Vandrad nodded. "We had a feeling you’d say something along those lines. It’s your choice, doctor and I’ll respect it.”

    Patricia smiled. “Thank you. Now, are there any other questions either of you have? Or should we begin planning my ‘miraculous’ escape from the clutches of my evil kidnapper?” she said, glancing over at Mercury and turning her meaningful look into a small, impish smile.






    Words: 2423  | Tag: @Mercury Arseneault | © marzia at shine & gs.


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    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
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    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
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    A Date and a Little Light Robbery - Page 2 Empty Re: A Date and a Little Light Robbery

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 4th September 2021, 12:56 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    As much as Mercury would have loved to sit around and pick on Vandrad with Patty all day, there were still questions that needed to be answered sooner rather than later. Mercury asked for information about Hasan and the Engineer that might otherwise seemed unimportant, and it seemed Patricia had picked up quite a bit. Hasan carried an accent from Ca-Elum, though it wasn’t strong; she suspected that he was a second generation native to the country that merely inherited the dialect from his parents. Vandrad affirmed the statement, letting them know that Hasan -- or Caecilius, whatever the fuck he was called -- had said as much to him at the du Wolff party. Patricia told them that Hasan wore a simple but expensive silver ring on the pointer finger of his right hand, and it served as a tell for when the man was in thought. He also shared a skill with Mercury in being able to deflect questions about himself -- so he was the spy, then. That made sense, and given that he had managed to infiltrate even Themmy’s home he was damn good at his job. He wasn’t a man easily angered, but that seemed to worry Patricia more for the day that he did reach his breaking point.

    Mercury smirked at the thought, clearly much more interested in seeing that line pushed than Patricia did. It was always fun to break other spies. They put up much more of a challenge for her than civilians did. Carrying on, the doctor advised that the Engineer was arrogant to the point of obliviousness, always talking down to everyone around him and dismissing them without much consideration. Good. That was a flaw that Mercury could easily utilize. He was mean and demanding, and given the hours that he kept Patricia working Mercury got the feeling he wasn’t an exceptionally patient man. That, too, was something she could utilize in her favor, though she would have to test the theory a bit first to confirm it before really running with it. According to Patty, he definitely enjoyed torturing humans with his experiments, which was just something she could feel even if it was impossible to see his face. He was also very strict about his time management, starting his day at exactly seven in the morning and ending it at precisely four in the afternoon, but where he went at the end of the day was unknown to her. The Engineer did not trust her fully, and for good reason.

    There were a lot of thoughts in Mercury’s head, the woman calculating out all the number of scenarios and statistics to figure out ways to utilize this information. She was almost certain that if she tried, she could find a way to fit herself in as a double agent. They would find it difficult to believe that she would betray Vandrad at first, but if she told them the truth about who she really was and why she was on Earthland, she had a feeling that the Engineer at least would change his mind. The problem was that going that route would mean telling things that not even Vandrad knew yet, things she didn’t want him to know… things she had been questioning these days more than she ever used to. Things that would be dangerous to reveal. While Mercury would at least acknowledge it as a possible tactic, she would only bring it up as a last resort should they truly be in desperate need of information.

    Patty went on to answer the last part of Mercury’s question, regarding how much information had been gathered on her and Vandrad. Apparently, the Dread Masters had been keeping an eye on Vandrad since before Mercury came into his life, having been silent observers to most of their interactions. They had not believed the partnership would last. Frankly, nobody had. Mercury and Vandrad were like oil and water in a lot of ways, but as Patricia stated the Masters had underestimated them. They hadn’t been able to observe anything of either of them while within guild halls, which Patty could only assume was because of how tightly defended such areas were with magic. But outside of that most of the rest of their time together had been free reign, including their first trip together in the glaciers and their events in the desert.

    The Xocili gave a wicked grin, despite herself. “They certainly got a couple of good shows, then.” She should have been concerned about the fact that someone had been watching during that first illicit tryst, but it really just entertained her. It was important to know, though; that meant that the Dread Masters were at least aware that Mercury could manipulate and create metal. That was annoying, but something she could work with. The only time Mercury had ever utilized her full magic at once was in the oceans on their way to Ca-Elum, and she was certain that if the Master had managed to spy on that event then they would have at least pinpointed what kind of magic she truly had. But as Patricia explained, the Dread Masters underestimated Mercury’s proficiency with technology, and were having a difficult time identifying her magic, which meant that the Xocili still had a number of tricks up her sleeves that they wouldn’t be able to predict.

    As for Vandrad, they at least knew that he had accessed the Ark. When the prince asked for confirmation on their theory that the Masters were trying to take the Ark from him, the doctor could only shake her head. This was an area that she knew next to nothing about. All she knew was that they were interested in the ability, and that once he had manifested the power it had pushed forward the Master’s timeline. Vandrad asked the likelihood of them being spied on as they spoke, which Patty advised wasn’t likely. With a quick verbal rundown of their surroundings, she was able to surmise their location within the Lusty Titans guildhall. Mercury raised a brow, impressed despite herself. Vandrad was equally as appreciative of the woman’s deductive skill. Patty admitted that the Masters had been watching Ruzatz and Agatha for sometime, believing that the guildmaster was an elite demon, one powerful enough that even they dared not act. They were right, of course, though Mercury had no intentions on confirming so at this time.

    Mercury snorted at Vandrad’s reluctance to admit their friendship with the Lusty Titan leaders. “Don’t act so ornery. You and I both know that if Agatha walked down here right now and offered you some favors, you wouldn’t say no. Mostly because you can barely talk around the woman, but ain’t no one blaming you there. Honestly, I’m still shocked that you didn’t take the bait at your birthday party. You two were alone for like an hour. All my efforts in being your wingman, wasted.”

    The doctor expressed her interest in meeting Ruzatz and Agatha at some point, mentioning that while they suspected Ruzatz was of demon origin that she was aware the man was very protective and supportive of humanity. She also viewed Agatha as one of the most prolific entertainers to have ever walked Earthland’s surface. She didn’t keep on that topic long, though, derailing her own train of thought and beginning things back down to discussing her own Arc of Time magic. Apparently the Dread Masters were unaware that Patricia possessed the ability, thinking her magicless. The only reason she had used it in the tarot trap was because the Masters had not been able to observe them there. If that were true, Mercury had to wonder why Patricia hadn’t taken the time then to explain everything to Vandrad… but for now she would keep that question to herself. The only reason Patricia was bringing it up was because she believed that the situation would get much more complicated should the Engineer discover the ability.

    Thankfully, it seemed it was a magic that was limited in many ways. Vandrad asked for more details to rule out possible repercussions of the Dread Masters getting their hands on the magic, and Patty assured them that the only way it could really be used was to advance something that had a preset linear path, as opposed to seeking out knowledge for the future that was effected by too many variables to have a single sure outcome. It was good to know, but Vandrad advised it wouldn’t be too much of a worry as he wanted to offer her the chance to get out now that she was with them and in a safe space.

    As they had both suspected, Patricia declined. She understood and appreciated their efforts, but she recognized that her position within the Dread Masters was a critical one. Mercury had made the kidnapping believable enough that she could work with it -- mostly because Mercury had legitimately kidnapped the woman. But she needed to return and continued getting as much information from the inside as she could. The prince nodded, stating that they had assumed she would take such a stance. Afterall, Patty had come too far to back out now. Mercury would have done the same thing.

    The doctor asked if there were any other questions. “None from me.” Mercury gave Vandrad a look to make sure he had gotten everything he’d wanted. Then, she hopped off her seat on the cage. “Luckily for you, we already planned for your escape as well. Come on out.” The last sentence was spoken toward a closet door across the room, which opened revealing an exact clone of Mercury, one that sauntered in the room with Mercury’s same confident swagger and smirk. “This is a robotic clone of my own design, and I guarantee it is realistic enough for them to think that it’s really me. I’ve actually got a second one of Vandrad out right now serving as a distraction so they will believe that your kidnapping was orchestrated and played out by me alone. Since they don’t know as much about me, it should be much easier for you to sell your escape to them, since they would assume that I would not necessarily outmatch you as much as Vandrad would.”

    The clone grinned at the woman. “And since I’m not a real person, you don’t have to pull your punches. So, let’s make it look good, shall we?”

    “One last thing,” the real Mercury interjected. “While Vandrad is going to be focusing on Hasan, my part in all this is to deal with the Engineer. I’ve already put a number of variables into place that should start to get his attention. I’m not going to tell you what they are because I think it’s best that your surprise be genuine when things come up, but whatever ‘tracks’ he starts to find, don’t compromise your position by trying to cover them for me. You just focus on maintaining your credibility. We’ll handle the rest.”

    Pulling out her duplicate of Mercury’s pistol, the clone gave it a skilled twirl on her fingers. “Alright, Patty Cake. You ready to play?”


    It was extremely late by the time Mercury returned to Silver Wolf, the Xocili taking it upon herself to make sure that the clone put on the perfect show of chasing down her captive and getting wounded enough in the battle to paint Patricia as the lucky victor that managed to outsmart Mercury and regain her freedom. The clone had fled to nurse her supposed wounds and seemingly crawl back to her guild the long way while Mercury herself lingered at Lusty Titans with Vandrad to discuss their thoughts on everything they had learned. When they were done, Mercury used her translocator ray to give Vandrad a swift and unseen return to Fairy Tail while she did the same to return to her room in Silver Wolf.

    By this point in the night, most of the guild was in bed already. Her clone would have long since made it into the protective storm of Silver Wolf were none of ill intent would be able to track upon the guild’s members or watch them in any fashion, which is where Mercury felt it safe enough to dismiss the creation. With a gentle yawn and a quick stretch, she decided to go down into the labs to read the report logs for that day and see what the Scholars had left for her to review.

    She was already dreaming of a nice hot bath to soak away the excitement of the day when something caught her eye in the hallways of the living quarters where she was making her way downstairs. One of the spirit wolves was standing before her, giving her a solid look that bespoke a seriousness even she could not miss. “What is it..?” she asked the wolf. The creature stared at her for a moment longer before turning away and walking down the hallway, only to stop and turn back toward her with an expectant look. With a frown, she followed the spirit to see what it wanted to show her.

    It stopped outside the door that belonged to Khelben’s room. She could tell from her radars that he wasn’t inside, which seemed odd. Then again, she really hadn’t been paying too much attention to the man outside of his progress as a Scholar and the reports he sent in. They did some occasional projects together along with other members of the branch, but ever since Divide Island they really had not spent too much one on one time together. Truthfully, she didn’t really know a whole lot about him or his habits. “Is something the matter?” she whispered to the wolf, thinking that the spirit was trying to tell her that something had happened to the man. Maybe he was out on a mission and something had gone wrong? Did he need help?

    It wasn’t until she realized the spirit was giving off a low growl that it dawned on her. The wolf was upset, but not out of concern for Khelben. Mercury frowned. Something was wrong. The animal was acting like it viewed Khelben as a threat, like it was trying to give Mercury a warning. But that made no sense. If Khelben was a threat to the guild or any of its members, he should have never found his way to Silver Wolf in the first place. The wolves and the storm would have driven him in circles. Something was very wrong.

    She watched as the ethereal wolf walked through the door and into Khelben’s room to indicate that Mercury needed to check within. Verifying with her scanners that anyone nearby was fast asleep in their rooms, she quickly picked the lock on Khelben’s door and slipped inside, shutting the entrance behind her. A quick glance brought a renewed frown to her face. Khelben had been with the guild for a number of months now. In fact, he had seemed to settle in quite nicely. So why was his room so… bare? There wasn’t a single personal item out on display. Hell, the room looked practically vacant. The only reason she knew he was still using the room was because she found a small collection of clothes hanging in the wardrobe, as well as a standard computer system that was set on the desk.

    Very carefully, she moved to the computer and turned it on. Pulling a small data drive from her pocket, she plugged the device in and used it to quickly bypass the security code and get into the system only to find that there was next to nothing on the computer. It was like he had never really used it. That, or he was extremely efficient at wiping its memory after each use. But there was also something odd about the computer itself. On second glance, it seemed… different. Unfortunately, she would not get the time to pinpoint what was giving her that impression. As she went to remove her data disk to inspect the physical unit itself, a small needle slipped out of a port and jabbed her in the finger tip.

    “Ouch, fuck!” the Xocili whispered under her breath, the event more surprising than painful. Had the computer shocked her? No, if it was electricity it would have energized her a bit. Instead, she had only a second or two to process the fact that something had happened before her world began to spin violently. Fighting down panic and anger, she tried to make for the door but before she could even finish her first step she collapsed on the ground and within moments was fully unconscious. When she woke again, she found herself still in the room, but things were different. The light was on, and she was on the bed instead of the floor. As her mind and eyes scrambled to regain clarity, Khelben came into view looming over her with an even expression, arms crossed over his chest.

    “It’s about time.”

    WORDS: 2851 | @Vandrad Ragnos
    Serilda Sinclair




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      Current date/time is 28th September 2021, 4:31 pm