MAD: Class S (Peregrine x firejay)

Peregrine

Waiting for Wit
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Primarily Prefer Male, No Preferences
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High fantasy is my personal favorite, followed closely by modern fantasy and post-apocalyptic, but I can happily play in any genre if the plot is good enough.
Scraping out the last of the cookies and cream, and feeling somewhat sad that there wasn't more of the creamy substance for her to enjoy, Vala promptly reached out for the sorbet. She didn't want to leave Aemer and Peggy waiting that long, but there was no way the scavenger in her would be willing to move on before she'd finished the second cup. She certainly wasn't going to leave it behind, and if they were moving around there was a chance that someone would take it from her, or she'd end up losing it.

The sorbet had softened somewhat while she'd ate the first cup, leaving it slightly runny and drippy. However, it didn't take long for Vala to realize that she almost liked it better this way. The chill was slightly more mild, the flavor stronger, and she'd never tasted anything quite like it before.

However, her bite was suddenly interrupted by Peggy's eager eyes. "Well, yeah," Vala replied, somewhat awkwardly. "We mostly ate grains and mushrooms and other plants, but there'd be berries and nuts in the fall, if we were lucky enough to find them. Why? What did you think scavengers ate?"
 

firejay1

The Phoenix
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Peggy laughed mostly in surprise, head jerking back a little. "I- honestly I never thought about it. It's just I've never been quite sure what scavengers eat. It must be hard out there." She said sympathetically. She shook her head, "We've learned about fruit and grains and stuff in history class, but no one here has ever had any, and they say that the earth doesn't sustain much real plant life anymore. It's hard to imagine, is all." Peggy tilted her head to the side, curiously. "Food here must be very different and strange to you, huh? What did you imagine we ate?"
 

Peregrine

Waiting for Wit
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On fairly regularly, every day. I'll notice a PM almost immediately. Replies come randomly.
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Adept, Advanced
Preferred Character Gender
Primarily Prefer Male, No Preferences
Genres
High fantasy is my personal favorite, followed closely by modern fantasy and post-apocalyptic, but I can happily play in any genre if the plot is good enough.
"Mmm," Vala mumbled around her spoon, carefully sucking it clean before removing it from her mouth. "Not anything like this, that's for sure," she said eventually. "I never imagined anything like this could even exist."

Carefully poking at her half melted sorbet, Vala took another spoonful, thinking back. Truth be told, neither she nor any of the other scavengers had really spent much time wondering what exactly the people in the Tortue Cities ate. "Whenever we'd talk about the people in the Cities, we'd always talk about the fact that there was enough food up here that no one had to go hungry. I guess we all figured you'd eat the same things, beans and plants, except there'd be more of it. And it would all taste good. And you guys had meat every day."

Meat was the rarest of commodities out in the wastes. Humans weren't the only animals that had escaped the assault of the squid, but they were one of the few. Catching a rat or rabbit was a rare occurrence, and usually only the strongest would actually get the chance to eat it.

"Som'n once said you ate the turt'l, too," Vala said, mumbling slightly around her next bite of ice cream. "I told them that was dumb."
 

firejay1

The Phoenix
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My times are pretty erratic, but it's only really rare to see me PST 3-11am. I'm on most of the time.
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Intermediate, Adept, Advanced, Adaptable
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Fantasy, Slice-of-Life, Modern.
Peggy laughed a little. "I don't know if it's totally dumb, but have you eaten anything here that looks like it might come from a turtle? Most of our food here is packaged from engineered plants. But we don't get anything like the fruits we've read about in textbooks. Any kind of meat is kept for the wealthy who are interested in trying it." She leaned in and with an expression of half disgust and half curiosity added, "I've heard some of the crazier people try squid sometimes, too. Whatcha think, Aemer?" She turned to ask Aemer, "Do you think you'd see anyone harvesting squid from the battlefield? I know your simulations probably wouldn't show that, but something to look for when you finally get to go out into battle."

"I did get to go out into battle. But I can't see anything by the time it's time to go back. All the squid are dead at that point, so nothing to see through." She explained back matter-of-factly, not seeming terribly interested in the conversation, but not having anything better to do.

"No way! This past battle? I thought you said they'd never let you on the field if your father didn't help you."

"I said they were never planning to let me on the field." Her lips curved in the slightest of wicked grins. "I never said I'd take it lying down." Peggy laughed, because when did Aemer ever take anything lying down. "It's the second set of scouts we've had in the past two months, anyways." Aemer said with a slight grimace. "They were very very short on people. That's where I met Vala." She said, nodding at Vala. "They just picked her up off the Wastes and shoved her in a mech. Classic meatshield. I think the battle had quite a few meatshields, because the body count was pretty high this time." They left Vala alone to finish up her ice cream as they talked.

"Well?" Peggy asked.

"Well what?" Aemer snapped back.

"Well, you've been dreaming about this moment for years. How was it? Finally being able to go out and kill squid? You close to just killing them with the power of your mind yet?"

Aemer full on scowled at her. "You know I haven't figured that out yet. But if anyone can, I will. I got my first taste of a real last boss' energy this time. If I can just replicate that, I might be on my way...." Her frown turned inwards as she thought about it.
 

Peregrine

Waiting for Wit
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1-3 posts per day, Multiple posts per week, One post per week, Slow As Molasses
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On fairly regularly, every day. I'll notice a PM almost immediately. Replies come randomly.
Writing Levels
Adept, Advanced
Preferred Character Gender
Primarily Prefer Male, No Preferences
Genres
High fantasy is my personal favorite, followed closely by modern fantasy and post-apocalyptic, but I can happily play in any genre if the plot is good enough.
With Peggy and Aemer starting to chat again, Vala was able to focus on finishing the sorbet. She ate quickly but neatly, doing her best to scrape out every last scrap in the cup. If it wasn't for the fact that she was afraid of embarrassing Aemer, she likely would have licked both cups clean as soon as she'd finished eating everything she could pick up with the spoon. The Wastes had taught her not to waste anything edible, but she also remembered the big buckets of ice cream that sat behind the counter when they'd ordered. This wasn't the Wastes. She didn't need to be... desperate.

Vala picked up her two empty cups, wondering what she was supposed to do with them, when Aemer suddenly said her name. The black-haired young woman smiled awkwardly, before suddenly spotting another guest putting a cup, still filled with a little bit of ice cream at the bottom, into a dark hole on the counter. Feeling her heart twinging somewhat at the waste, Vala scooped up Aemer's cup as well, before depositing all three cups and their spoons into the hole.

As the three women moved towards the door, Vala couldn't help but peer curiously at the two in front of her as she listened to their conversation. She'd gotten the sense from the reception that Aemer had gotten from the various military people that she hadn't exactly been welcome on the battlefield. However, it was what Peggy said next that caused the young woman to become stunned.

"It's possible for bioengineers to kill squid with their minds?" she asked, somewhat dumbly. Even though Aemer said she hadn't figured it out, and implied no one else had either, Vala couldn't help but feel excited. "That's... amazing."
 

firejay1

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My times are pretty erratic, but it's only really rare to see me PST 3-11am. I'm on most of the time.
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Fantasy, Slice-of-Life, Modern.
For half a moment, both Peggy and Aemer turned to stare at Vala in surprise, and then Peggy laughed loudly, doubling over, at the exact same time Aemer scoffed, incredulously and said, "Haven't you been paying any attention at all?"

Peggy, recovering from her laughter with quieter giggles, shoved Aemer in the shoulder. "Oh, be nice. When you start talking about squid no one gets what's going on. Even some of the ones trained as bioengineers." Turning to Vala, still hiccupping little giggles, she shook her head. "Sorry, I'm not trying to make fun of you. It's just that's impossible. Or that's what everyone keeps trying to tell Aemer. Bioengineers can like... I think the way Aemer talks about it, they can talk to the Calamar and see what they see. Like navigators. Reading maps and stuff to help you find your way." She leaned closer and conspiratorially added, "I'm not super sure, though, cause I was trained on a mech, and whenever she starts talking about it it goes straight over my head. But anyways," She said, raising her voice to normal levels again, "Aemer somehow thinks that because she's oh so special and all, that someday she could just... go out without a mech driver and convince the squid to all die. Just start killing each other. If bioengineers could do that, already, we'd never have to worry about the squid again. I've got to admit, I'm not a huge fan of the whole death and war vibe she's always seemed most comfortable in, but boy if she manages it, I'd love to be alive to see it." She shook her head almost admiringly at Aemer.

"Anyways!" She said brightly, changing the subject and linking arms with Vala. "We're here to get you some clothes, so you can leave the clutches of Aemer's drab little wardrobe." She closed one eye and squinted at Vala, in a mocking caricature of evaluation. "You seem the quiet sort, so nothing TOO brightly colored, but this is your first time, so we can try fun things. I never get to play dressup with Aemer!" She said, practically sparkling in excitement. "Ooh, I know! Let's go to Madison's first. They have the day to day stuff. Jeans, jackets, T-shirts, and some basic blouses and sweaters. Most of those are pretty simple, but cute! After that, we can go to the Turtleback." She grinned at Aemer over her shoulder, and started scooting down the street, making a beeline for Madison's, while her mouth still fired away. "I never get to go to the Turtleback. I know, the name sounds stupid, but they have the nicest collection of dresses and shoes within our price range, or Aemer's price range, anyways. And I bet you'd look gorgeous in something dark blue that shows off your frame, and a nice pair of heels. You're taller and stronger looking than Aemer or me."
 
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Peregrine

Waiting for Wit
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Adept, Advanced
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Primarily Prefer Male, No Preferences
Genres
High fantasy is my personal favorite, followed closely by modern fantasy and post-apocalyptic, but I can happily play in any genre if the plot is good enough.
"You sounded quite confident about your chances to me," Vala finally responded to Aemer's grousing, a slightly uncomfortable smile spreading across her face. Aemer's sharp words had tempered her excitement somewhat, and Peggy's follow-up description only served to do so more.

Frankly, in comparison to Peggy, Vala knew even less about Calamar behavior. Unlike the Tortue Cities, where knowledge was systematized and disseminated to everyone, Vala was born and raised on the Wastes. Everything she knew was something she'd either experienced herself, or heard directly from the mouths of others. Before she'd come to the city, people out there capable of 'speaking' with the squid had been little more than legend, let alone what they were capable of.

But still, she'd seen the battlefield. And she didn't want to know how many people had died from that. Peggy was right. If Aemer could get it to work, it would be something like a miracle.

But it was clear that the freckled woman was ready to redirect their conversation, and although Vala wanted to know more, she took the conversation redirect with as much grace as she could muster. Doing her best to smile at Peggy's descriptions of the various clothing stores, even though most of it sounded like straight up gibberish to her, Vala nodded. "That sounds nice," she agreed. "Lead the way?"

As Peggy began to move them forward, however, Vala slipped backwards, walking shoulder to shoulder with Aemer. "I don't think it sounds all that unreasonable," she said, voice rather soft. "The squid thing, I mean. I've seen the Calamar kill each other before."
 

firejay1

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Fantasy, Slice-of-Life, Modern.
Peggy glanced back at them, but let Vala go. It looked like Aemer finally had someone to talk to about her silly squid nonsense, leading the way cheerfully.

Aemer, for her part, nearly tripped over her own feet, steps faltering for a moment. She turned to stare at Vala, the full attention of her brown eyes suddenly trained on the other girl. "You've seen them do it before?" She asked, voice low and flat in an almost numb sort of shock. "I mean, the smaller Calamar fight all the time, it's not much of a big deal, but the full-grown ones, fighting each other? We almost never get to see those. There are maybe two or three written about in the entire history of the Tortue Cities." She almost started leaning towards Vala, zeroing in on the conversation. "You mean like a full fight, right? Not just, one or two squabbling over... whatever, though I've never heard of that either, but the real squid... frenzy, where they all start killing and eating each other in huge groups, completely forgetting anything else even exists. You've seen that? What does it look like? When do they stop, what happens to the survivors, did it happen in a specific place, have you seen them use any of their other powers, do last bosses participate?"

She had pored over the accounts they had of these squid frenzy. The first few didn't have very good documentation, because people didn't seem to quite know what to make of it, but she'd gotten her hands on a couple books from survivors of the most recent ones. Almost all of these accounts were from mech drivers, because it seemed almost all the bioengineers were killed in the first few minutes of these, and the few who made it out usually spent years in therapy, retired from the business, and/or couldn't say much more than that everything went black and they didn't know anything beyond that. The books she'd read talked about squid killing each other, eating each other, leaving themselves vulnerable to be completely wiped out by the mech drivers, since it was almost as if they didn't care the mech drivers were there. Many accounts also described in gruesome detail, drivers watching their bioengineers get pounced on unexpectedly, the metal being ripped apart with a fury and crushed into the dust when it was discovered it wasn't a true squid. No one had identified a pattern for when or why the squid might do it. All anyone seemed to know about the circumstances surrounding it was that it happened rarely. Maybe once in a lifetime. And nothing they did could seem to simulate it from the rare squid they had managed to capture and study.
 

Peregrine

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Primarily Prefer Male, No Preferences
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High fantasy is my personal favorite, followed closely by modern fantasy and post-apocalyptic, but I can happily play in any genre if the plot is good enough.
"Sure," Vala replied, somewhat taken aback. She'd expected Aemer to be enthusiastic in talking about the squid, but she genuinely hadn't expected this strong of a reaction. All the same, she did her best to collect her thoughts. "They're not exactly common in the Wastes, but not super rare. Most scavengers have a survivor story or two from squidfights. Ah. What did you call them? Frenzies? I suppose that's a good term for it, too."

She shrugged slightly. "It's not like we go out of our way to watch them, though. They're far from safe. But I saw the tail end of one, once. Dead squid absolutely everywhere. I don't know if there were bosses or not. I... can't really tell them apart. But there were definitely some big ones. They were fighting like crazy. Treating each other the same way they'd treat any other living thing they see. And then all of a sudden they just... stopped, organized back together, and flew away again."

Vala chewed slightly on the edge of her lip. "I'd never seen so many dead squid before. Shame they're all poisonous, or we probably would have had enough food to last our entire colony a week."
 

firejay1

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Aemer shook her head half in shock, processing this new piece of information. "Usually scavengers get low education jobs, and frenzies aren't common enough for anyone to have asked them about it, I guess. But for it to be common..." That meant something. It had to mean something. It was pretty common knowledge among bioengineers and mech drivers that squid were some level of sentient, and quite intelligent, so of course they wouldn't fight each other in front of an enemy force if they had a choice, so she had always assumed they didn't. What Vala was telling her suggested something totally different, but if they had control over these frenzies, why would they do it at all? What was the point? And why would they ever do it in the middle of a battle? "They just organized back together and flew away again..." She repeated quietly under her breath. She pressed her lips tightly together. What did that mean? She was itching to cut this trip short and go home to work on theories. Her father had always been better with machines than living things, but he was good for this sort of theoretical bouncing ideas around. All this time, when they had come across dead squid that hadn't decayed yet, they had just assumed that other Tortue Cities had taken care of them, and it was possible that that was true, but that had to mean some of them were from these frenzies or squidfights as Vala had called them.

Before she could ask any more questions, though, Peggy stopped abruptly and announced. "We're here!" The shop she had stopped at was fairly tall, but looked relatively cozy, with wooden doors opened wide and a warm yellow light pouring out, along with the soft strains of a soothing, lyricless music. Above the doors was the word "Madison's" in big, not-quite-cursive, blue letters. Inside was a collection of casual, comfortable clothes lining the walls, prominently displayed on tables and hangars all around the store. It seemed the store was largely geared towards younger women, as there weren't many men there. Peggy put her hands on her hips and said with satisfaction, "If you don't like anything here, we can go somewhere else, of course."
 
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Peregrine

Waiting for Wit
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On fairly regularly, every day. I'll notice a PM almost immediately. Replies come randomly.
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Adept, Advanced
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Primarily Prefer Male, No Preferences
Genres
High fantasy is my personal favorite, followed closely by modern fantasy and post-apocalyptic, but I can happily play in any genre if the plot is good enough.
Vala nodded slightly at Aemer's mumbling, waiting for the other woman to ask her more questions. However, maybe Vala's explanation had been more satisfactory than she'd anticipated, because Aemer seemed to be completely lost in thought. Mentally shrugging to herself, she left Aemer to her thoughts.

The timing worked out almost perfectly, because Peggy announced their arrival only a minute later. Leaving Aemer behind to her thoughts, Vala jogged forward a couple of steps to catch up with the redhead. However, she ended up hesitating on the doorstep, feeling slightly overwhelmed. Although she'd already walked past so many stores on their little jaunt, and had seen countless outfits and other luxury items through the windows, before this point it hadn't really seemed fully... real. She'd been just as occupied with all the people as she had the storefronts, and when it was safely separated from her by a barrier of glass it had been far easier to let herself just ignore it.

Now, however, rows and rows of soft fabrics were confronted right in front of her eyes, and Vala sure as hell didn't know what to do with it all. Glancing at Peggy, her expression unconsciously taking on a touch of anxiety that even she couldn't fully control, she chewed slightly on her inner lip. "What am I supposed to... do?"

At that moment, she would have gladly sworn up and down that confronting Calamar with a reliable piece of machinery was far less intimidating than this mild shop full of soft music and colorful clothes.
 

firejay1

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Peggy smiled at her patiently. "Well, the first step is just to go in and look around." She stepped behind Vala and gave her a little push, ignoring Aemer still muttering to herself behind them. Pushing her deeper and deeper into the store, she stopped when she saw a shirt that might be nice and snagged the hangar, to present it to Vala. "How about this?" She checked the tag briefly. "It's pretty cheap, too." Nodding encouragingly, she added, "That's kind of how you go shopping, you know. You just look around, take a closer look at anything you might like, and if you decide you like the way it looks, you go to the changing rooms to try it on. If it fits and you like it, you carry it around until you've picked everything you want or need, and then grab Aemer so she can stand in line and pay." She pointed as she talked, first to the changing rooms, and then to the registry, where a few people were standing. The store was relatively empty at the moment, since it was still fairly early in the day. Certainly early enough that no one would have gotten off work if they had a regular job. "Since you're totally new here, we need to get you a full wardrobe, so take as long as you like and get as much as you need. Especially since, let me guess, Aemer threatened to incinerate every other piece of clothing you own and might have worn on the Wastes." She raised her eyebrows at the still-thinking Aemer, who did not respond.
 

Peregrine

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Adept, Advanced
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Primarily Prefer Male, No Preferences
Genres
High fantasy is my personal favorite, followed closely by modern fantasy and post-apocalyptic, but I can happily play in any genre if the plot is good enough.
Looking was something Vala could do just fine. Under Peggy's slightly physical urging, Vala allowed herself to be nudged across the threshold to the store's shop. Despite the fact that the door was wide open, the inside was still slightly cooler than in the street, perhaps due to the lack of people. With the omnidirectional music muffling the sounds of the outside, it truly did feel like she'd just stepped into another world.

However, when Peggy suddenly grabbed a shirt of the rack and presented it towards Vala, the dark haired young woman couldn't help but stare at Peggy like she was presenting Vala with a dead rat. As a matter of fact, considering that she could skin and eat a rat, she likely would have preferred that over the shirt.

In the Wastes, possessions were precious. People only ever had a few of them. And while Vala undoubtedly understood that this was a place to exchange for clothes, the notion that she could just go grabbing whatever she liked left her all but flabbergasted. Behavior like that would likely have gotten her kicked out of a Survivor's group, even if she had every intention to trade for the things she touched. It was common courtesy, don't touch it if it belonged to someone else, unless you were egging for a fight.

However, Peggy was her guide, and she could only trust that the other woman wasn't trying to get her into trouble. As Peggy continued her explanation, Vala hesitantly reached out, taking the shirt. She unconsciously rubbed the fabric between her fingers. It was thin and soft, like nothing out in the wastes. Clothes there were made from mixtures of leather and plant fibers, and were always rough and coarse, even when they were made well, which many of them weren't.

Still gently feeling up the material of the shirt, Vala nodded somewhat absentmindedly. However, a second later she finally looked up. "I mean, everything in here is perfectly usable. Wouldn't this... rip too easily, though?" As nice as the soft fabric felt under her skin, she was sure that any loose thread getting tugged would cause a massive tear in the thing.
 

firejay1

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Fantasy, Slice-of-Life, Modern.
Peggy raised her eyebrows in surprise and laughed a little. "Oh, uhh. I don't know. I've never really thought about it. That one's cheap and for everyday wear, so sure, if you're planning to get into a lot of fights or work around flying machine parts or stuff, it won't last long, but Aemer's kept shirts like those for years with not much more than little holes in them. We can get you something sturdier if mech driving a lot will wear down your clothes, you think. And we can get several pairs of anything you like. I mean everything in here is usable that's why you choose based off of what looks nice to you."

She studied Vala thoughtfully for a moment, then smiled slightly. "Shopping is supposed to be fun, Vala! Here." She took the shirt from Vala's hands and draped it over one of Aemer's arms, then gestured to Vala to follow her. Taking her to a small rack with a number of jingly, shiny things, she picked a small packet with a pair of earrings hanging from it, shaking it slightly. "Do you have earrings out in the Wastes? They don't have any purpose, they're just pretty." She lightly tapped her right ear with her free hand, showing off a flat piece of metal hanging from her ear. It was a slightly green color and had random, almost floral patterns worked into the metal. "This is my favorite pair, but I typically change out which ones I'm wearing based on how I'm feeling." She spun on her heels briefly. "The way I see it, looking nice is a weapon." She said with a grin. "Or, it makes me feel better, anyways, to feel good about how I look." She squinted a smile, shrugging her shoulders and laughing a little at herself. "This must be going way over your head, isn't it?"
 

Peregrine

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Primarily Prefer Male, No Preferences
Genres
High fantasy is my personal favorite, followed closely by modern fantasy and post-apocalyptic, but I can happily play in any genre if the plot is good enough.
"Not entirely..." Vala replied, her tone trailing off awkwardly. It wasn't that she didn't get what Peggy was saying, it was simply that she'd always considered it incredibly stupid. There was one time she'd traded the snail shells she'd gathered for the calcium to another woman, who'd given her a whole potato for them. It hadn't been until a week later that Vala had realized the woman had kept them to string them on a piece of fiber and create a necklace. Among everything she'd experienced on the wastes, that memory stuck out to Vala, because she'd always sworn she'd never be foolish enough to trade away a valuable resource like food for mere decoration.

But, with how enthusiastic and kind Peggy was being, there was no way she could say that she'd always thought it was stupid. She also did her best to keep her thoughts off her face. As for looks being a weapon, well she could certainly see that. But Vala was quite certain she didn't want the results that particular type of weapon would yield. Not now that she didn't need to for her survival.

She stared at a couple of the shirts that were on a rack near her, trying to imagine she'd found them out on the wastes with another survivor. She couldn't take them both, but she got first pick. She stared at them for a couple of seconds, before her head unconsciously shook. Even that thought process did nothing to help her, because Vala was well aware that the concerns she would have had out on the wastes, durability, warmth, camouflage, were all a non-issue here.

"It's just... such a different mentality from how I've always lived my life," she finally explained, picking her words carefully. "I get it in theory, but that doesn't mean I'm able to, well, put it into practice."
 

firejay1

The Phoenix
Invitation Status
Posting Speed
Multiple posts per day, 1-3 posts per day, One post per day, 1-3 posts per week, One post per week
Online Availability
My times are pretty erratic, but it's only really rare to see me PST 3-11am. I'm on most of the time.
Writing Levels
Intermediate, Adept, Advanced, Adaptable
Preferred Character Gender
Male, Female
Genres
Fantasy, Slice-of-Life, Modern.
Aemer, who had finally decided to shake out of the whirlwing of her thoughts and join them in the land of the living, gave a loud snort. "It doesn't make sense to me either. Just pick whatever looks most comfortable and let's go."

Peggy laughed, and then put both her hands on Aemer's shoulders, and said in a low tone of voice that was pretending to be serious, "Shut up, bitch. It's too early to be infecting her with your aesthetic blindness."

Aemer leaned to the side to look over Peggy's shoulder at Vala, and said flatly, "Bet you it's too late for that. She grew up on the Wastes, after all."

Peggy made an annoyed noise at Aemer, then brightened all of a sudden and whirled around to look at Vala. "That's it! Here, let's start simple. What's your favorite color? Or if you've never thought about that, what's the first thing you've ever thought was pretty, or the prettiest thing you've ever seen. Forget the clothes for a bit, and just think about anything you've ever thought was nice to look at, not because it was useful, or necessary, just looking at it made you feel good for whatever reason."
 

Peregrine

Waiting for Wit
Original poster
SECURITY DEPARTMENT
Invitation Status
Looking for partners
Posting Speed
1-3 posts per day, Multiple posts per week, One post per week, Slow As Molasses
Online Availability
On fairly regularly, every day. I'll notice a PM almost immediately. Replies come randomly.
Writing Levels
Adept, Advanced
Preferred Character Gender
Primarily Prefer Male, No Preferences
Genres
High fantasy is my personal favorite, followed closely by modern fantasy and post-apocalyptic, but I can happily play in any genre if the plot is good enough.
Truthfully, Vala couldn't help but figure that Aemer was right. She'd grown up in the Wastes, a world where everything was a matter of life and death, where she'd always had work to do if she wanted to be able to survive. She'd spent her childhood in the remains of an underground mechanical city, crawling through narrow passageways the adults couldn't fit through and hoping she wouldn't get crushed. All the while desperate to find enough materials that she could trade for food to help feed her mother and little brother. Beauty had always been one of the last things on her mind.

But Peggy's words still caused her to pause. Unconsciously, her thoughts flickered through her memories of the wastes. Through all the memories of her struggles and suffering, a few stood out to her. A vividly bright sunset, the sky brilliantly pink while the clouds exploded with a riot of oranges and yellows, like a fiery path that could lead her up to heaven. A field of wildflowers blooming with riotous color amidst the green grass. A faint waterfall tumbling off the edge of a tall cliff before it transformed into a rainbow mist. Despite everything the squid had done to this world, everything they'd killed and everything they'd destroyed, they hadn't managed to ruin the entire world. And those were the kind of moments that made Vala feel alive.

"I don't have a favorite color," Vala finally responded, her eyes roaming around the store once more. She wanted to participate in the shopping. Despite Aemer's attitude towards the whole thing, Vala couldn't help but figure from the number of clothing stores in the area that Peggy's attitude towards it was the more common one. Now she just had to figure it out. "But I guess I've always liked... color. Sunsets. Flowers. Rainbows. There aren't always a lot of colors left in the wastes."

Her eyes landed on a sleeve that was sticking out from among some other clothes. Even from here, she could see it was covered in a mixture of reds and purples, swirling around each other like leaves of plants curling together. "So... Ummm..." She walked over to the garment, carefully grabbing it and pulling it out from among its fellows. It was a long shirt, nearly a dress, with one long sleeve and the other cut short at the shoulder. From the bright reds and purples in the upper corner, it faded along a gradient until it was blues and purples at the far hem opposite the shoulder. Somewhat hesitantly, she presented it to Peggy and Aemer. "Something like this?"
 

firejay1

The Phoenix
Invitation Status
Posting Speed
Multiple posts per day, 1-3 posts per day, One post per day, 1-3 posts per week, One post per week
Online Availability
My times are pretty erratic, but it's only really rare to see me PST 3-11am. I'm on most of the time.
Writing Levels
Intermediate, Adept, Advanced, Adaptable
Preferred Character Gender
Male, Female
Genres
Fantasy, Slice-of-Life, Modern.
Peggy bounced forward and inspected Vala's catch, not touching it, but bending over and twisting her head this way and that to get a good look at it. "Exactly!" She nearly clapped her hands together, then stomped over to Aemer. "You stay right here with Vala for a moment." She scampered off, and Aemer just looked over at Vala, with almost an apologetic look on her face, before folding her arms across her chest to wait. Peggy was back in a moment, another equally colorful piece of clothing in her hands, this one a tie-dye set of leggings. She did this several more times, darting back and forth until Vala's hands were chock-full of brightly colored clothes, with a couple darker pants and jackets.

As soon as Vala's arms were full, Peggy bodily shoved her towards one of the changing room, saying brightly. "Go on! Try them on! See how you like them." The minute she shoved Vala through the door, she brushed her hands off, looking pleased. "Hah. Looks like she's catching on to this pretty quickly."
 

Peregrine

Waiting for Wit
Original poster
SECURITY DEPARTMENT
Invitation Status
Looking for partners
Posting Speed
1-3 posts per day, Multiple posts per week, One post per week, Slow As Molasses
Online Availability
On fairly regularly, every day. I'll notice a PM almost immediately. Replies come randomly.
Writing Levels
Adept, Advanced
Preferred Character Gender
Primarily Prefer Male, No Preferences
Genres
High fantasy is my personal favorite, followed closely by modern fantasy and post-apocalyptic, but I can happily play in any genre if the plot is good enough.
Peggy's enthusiastic approval caused a smile to spread across Vala's face, and a trace of satisfaction to bloom in her heart. She still wasn't entirely sure she understood this shopping thing, but at the very least she hadn't failed on the first step. Thinking back to the whirlwind introduction Peggy had given her earlier, she was pretty sure that the next step was to take it over to the little rooms and try it on. However, before she could move, Peggy's words brought her to a halt.

"Wait?" she repeated, but Peggy was already gone. Feeling somewhat confused, and wondering what step she'd forgotten, her eyes momentarily drifted towards Aemer, wondering if the other woman might provide her with a hint. However, instead of getting a response, all she got was a strange look that she couldn't quite pin down.

However, only a few seconds later, Peggy was back, dropping another garment into her hands. This one was no more subdued than the dress shirt that Vala had chosen herself, a burst of swirling color across the leggings. Considering for a moment, Vala nodded slightly. The blues and purples of it reminded her of one evening, in the middle of winter, where the light at sunset combined with fog had somehow managed to transform the whole world into evening shades of purple.

And then Peggy returned with another garment. And another. And another. And, all of a sudden, Vala had a feeling she understood what Aemer's look from a few minutes ago had meant.

"A-all of them?" Vala stuttered, wondering exactly how long it would take for her to try them on one by one. However, she didn't really get a chance to say anything about it before the door to the changing room was closed behind her.

Taking a deep breath, Vala began to work her way through the clothes.
 

firejay1

The Phoenix
Invitation Status
Posting Speed
Multiple posts per day, 1-3 posts per day, One post per day, 1-3 posts per week, One post per week
Online Availability
My times are pretty erratic, but it's only really rare to see me PST 3-11am. I'm on most of the time.
Writing Levels
Intermediate, Adept, Advanced, Adaptable
Preferred Character Gender
Male, Female
Genres
Fantasy, Slice-of-Life, Modern.
Aemer and Peggy waited outside the changing room for a moment, and after a bit, Peggy called into the room, "Vala! If you find anything you like, but aren't sure about it, put it on and come out and show us! Getting input from friends is one of the fun things about shopping."

Aemer rolled her eyes silently, and Peggy stuck out her tongue, before adding, "Of course, you could always be like Aemer and just pick whatever you think is most comfortable. Up to you."