The Elder Invasion: CHAPTER 6 - The South Gate

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Built on the ruins of the ARC Tower, final battlefield of the Admin War, the South Gate is now the bustling heart of Iwaku - a hub where people from all corners of the land cross paths.

The left tower of the Gate is home to a thriving airport, where airships ferry passengers to the more remote parts of Iwaku, like the mountains and Temple Island. The right-hand tower houses the busy Iwaku Station, where magically-enhanced trains offer direct connections to the Cult Quarter and Badlands. Each tower also includes a number of hotels, restaurants and parking lots to service the travelers.

And finally, on the high bridge that connects the two towers, the famous Gatekeeper Tavern offers exciting entertainment and nightlife - a place where all races and cults brush shoulders for better or worse.

[Power Hierarchy: C, D, S, R]
Re: The South Gate

Bullets ricocheted off the stone walls of the houses and embedded themselves in the wooden beams of others, though Jack did not hear them. The sun was high in the sky now and the heat was annoying Jack as he ran down the cobbled streets of Iwaku city. He made a corner and saw ahead of him down a long street, the south gate.

The giant pair of doors stood open allowing all in, or, more importantly for the situation all out. The Gatekeeper tavern stood a little way away, this had been Jack's target but considering how annoyingly effective the police were at chasing people this seemed to be out of the question.

Suddenly there was a loud sound, a popping, like some bubblewrap, and then a great whooshing sound like that of an angry wind. The force hit Jack squarely in the somach and sent him flying a good few feet back, widing him and leaving him on his knees desperately gasping for air.

His diaphragm finally kicked in and he drew in a long thankful breath, shaking his head to dissipate the light-headedness he took stock of his surroundings. there was colourful bunting hanging from the houses, Jack must not have noticed this, and was.. the sun now far lower on the horizon?

Must be a trick of the light.. but then he noticed it. Where there had been the huge gate, and the surrounding area was now a giant building, resembling, Jack thought, an airport. A monorail train shot out of the side of it and ran along the wall that surrounded the city as Jack looked on.

There was steam rising from odd places in the architecture with audible hisses and there were huge letters above it all. they read, "THE SOUTH GATE"

Early Morning, Day one, Outside The South Gate.

Jack felt a hand gently grab his shoulder.
Re: The South Gate


It was different.

Something had changed.

Jack knew this somehow, even as the cold fingers gripped him. And as he turned the weight of all things seemed to fall upon him, his chest growing tighter, blisters forming on his soles, the muscles in his limbs filling with acid from where he had been running. These myriad pains pricked his body, and his senses reeled from a violent awakening. The smells of the street sewers, the choking fumes of the trains, the roar of lifting airships.

He almost saw the dust and criss-crossing flies, all details sharpening around the silver visage of the mask...


The masked figure stood over the kneeling Jack, the morning breeze sending phantom ripples through its purple robe. For a moment he thought it was a spirit of sorts, but the grip of the figure's pale hand was real enough, as was the sense of heaviness that it exuded. Jack felt his blood running hot and cold in the presence of this creature.

And then, from behind the mask, a beautiful and poetic voice was muffled by the silver metal.

"How should the stage be painted, when even the mutes refrain from silence?"

Every syllable was a crushing blow. Jack pushed suddenly to his feet, batting the figure's hand away and putting space between them. He had heard those words before... so many years ago... sounding amidst fire and mortal screams.


The figure curled his hand back inside his purple robes, the masked face lowering mournfully.

"What have you done?" demanded Jack, his fists tightening, willing magic to flow through his veins against the counter-current of Confluence. He felt his body loosening again, the pain fading in readiness for combat.

Asmodeus looked up, as if not understanding the question, his masked face tilting as it watched the busy motions of the South Gate. Trains roared out of the terminals and thundered over the tracks above their heads, whilst airships blossomed like white flames between the rooftops.

"I... " He lifted his hand again, feeling the air, "I saved you, Jack.... I saved everyone. Saviour of Iwaku.... save..."

The street was eerily empty, the only sounds coming from the station, as if it was the lifeless part of some great machine in which they were trapped. But at the far end of the street, where morning fog veiled the distance, Jack could see other figures, masked like Asmodeus. There were maybe 6 of them, all stood watching, their faces concealed.

Asmodeus followed Jack's gaze. He waved his hand towards his masked companions. "They came... like angels. 18 years ago, Jack. They sailed on a great ship, and they found us, at the end of the War. They found me... me, Jack. My little angels."

Some other figures appeared at the end of the street, not masked like the other six, but dressed in simple robes. Some wore the dark glasses Jack remembered as marks of the ARC Emissaries. They were leading horses and carts, many with backpacks holding food and travelling equipment.

"Look, Jack..." whispered Asmodeus, his voice light and airy, as tenuous as his sanity, "My Emissaries and I stopped things... we stopped it going bad again. There was going to be wars. Secret cults, madmen, murders..."

He dropped suddenly, his robes draping in the dust. And with his finger he started tracing a shape in the roadside mud. Jack watched, as one would watch the flailing of an injured bird, looking on as Asmodeus drew a symbol.

Two swords, tip to tip though a symbol of infinity, and laid across them, the shape of an eye.


"I formed the Legacy's Eye.... the Knights of Iwaku." He looked up again, his dirty hands lifting towards the South Gate, "I gave my money to the city... all the funds of the A.R.C. And we worked, Jack... for eighteen years we worked. We killed Paorou-Sama, as the others escaped to the Mirror Realm. I killed Dayne, before he could form the Crimson Eye. We changed history... stopped the anomaly from re-occurring... the flaw in the Cycle... Void... Rift Storms... and we waited - we waited for you, the day you and the others would return."

He shuffled towards Jack on his knees, hands still outstretched. "Now we can finish it. We can stop the anomaly from reoccuring... stop the wars and the genocides. I can save everyone... make it better. The Knights shall protect the Cycle... protect it forever."

His words were becoming increasingly manic, jumping from subject to subject. "What do you want from me?" snapped Jack, trying to break through the poetic ramblings of the masked angel.

Asmodeus's hand touched Jack's leg, the fingers snaking towards his thigh, caressing the leather straps of the Sheathe of Iwaku. The angel touched the stone surface of the Sheathe for the briefest moment before Jack pulled away, causing Asmodeus to drop back onto all fours.

"The Sheathe, Jack!" cried Asmodeus, "It's part of the Cycle. We must protect it now. The Knights must protect the sacred relics... gather the heroes. Together we can stop it... we can stop the Cycle breaking down... the Rift Storms coming back... the death..."

At the end of the street, the other masked figures began moving, taking tentative steps towards Jack. And whilst Asmodeus's mask had the shape of mourning in its eyes, theirs were more decorated, harsher. Their dark robes billowed as they quickened their pace, closing the distance between themselves and Jack.

"Please Jack," whispered Asmodeus, coming back to his knees, "Help us. Help Iwaku..."

Asmodeus appears before Jack. He explains that 18 years ago, the timeline was changed by the arrival of the Legacy Survivors from Iwaku's dark future. With their help, Asmodeus formed a new order of the Knights of Iwaku from what would have become the Crimson Eye. The Knights killed Paorou-Sama and set about protecting Iwaku for the next 18 years and ensuring that the Legacy future was averted. They have been waiting for Jack's return, so they can protect the Sheathe of Iwaku.]
Re: The South Gate

Jack had taken a few steps back, but now paused, a small smile appearing on hi face as he stepped back towards the crouched Asmodeus, his hand held out, for a handshake.

"Of course I'll be a knight and help you look after this thing!" He returned, and immediately was aware that he'd said something wrong. There was a fair amount of uncomfortable shuffling from the looming crowd of knights and Asmodeus' expression had gone from one of puzzlement to something Jack could only decipher as pity.

"Wh-what!? What's wrong..." He said, taking half a step back. the elation he'd felt a second ago suddenly falling, burning, to the ground.

"We... I.. cannot allow you to become a knight Jack.. please, just give us the sheathe! Help Iwaku." He held his hands up again in pleading, but Jack was suddenly more aware of a couple of the knights reaching into their robes, Jack could guess what for.

"I can look after the sheathe myself Asmodeus, but I'll promise you this.. the thing wont leave I-" Jack didn't finish his sentence as he suddenly had a gun barrel pressed into his ribs and a sword top and inch from his face.

The sword crackled with an unreal energy as it's bearer spoke. "Give us the sheathe and there shall be no bloodshed today!" Jack simply looked the man in his eyes, both visible under the mask.

"Looks like your reality isn't absolute Asmo.." he said quietly, and tensed.

"NO!!" screamed Asmodeus, as Jack leant back unlatching his rucksack and letting it fall, a shot from the gun whizzing between his back and the falling bag, and the sword thrusting out over him. One hand came up and palmed the sword wielder's hand, sending the sword skyward as the young man twisted, his other hand grabbing the pistol and sending it across the street with a quick explosion. It hurt his hand a bit, and Jack swore at the confluence for this.

Jack rolled forward as the knights advanced as one. Asmodeus was panicking trying to get in their way it seemed "No! we protect! we should not harm him!" There were grunts and answers to Asmodeus' statement but Jack was more preoccupied with the gun wielding knight, who had spun and revealed a shotgun. Jack had enough time to turn and take the blow to the back.

The young man fell forward and skidded along the ground a good few feet, the back of his jacket smoking and torn, but intact. He pushed himself up to a stand and looked back, smiling a bit. "Thank god for leather ey?" he said to the gunman as three more knights surrounded him with impressive speed.

Lightning fast three blades were drawn and lightning fast Jack yanked on a chain attached to his belt, pulling it off and pulling a penknife attached to the other end out of his pocket. The chain was swung a bit and then thrusted forward, the hard oval of red plastic and metal colliding with one of the assailant' faces, knocking him back and to the ground. The metal chain was then yanked, and the undrawn penknife shot back to collide with the second man's face and was then swung to knock the knife out of the third's hand.

Jack kicked the third man in the gut and ran towards his bag. He could not win this, he'd have to run. The shotgun made another shout and Jack managed to jump forward avoiding most of the blast. He rolled, sending a fireball, though it was far smaller than usual, in the direction of the gunman.Asmodeus was standing and trying to stop the knights as Jack reached his bag.

Leaning down to get it there was a shout, and Jack looked up, to see a long whip of flame coming down on him. Falling back a little he held up his finger, and suddenly the air got far denser, everything got grittier and the colours of the world somehow felt duller. The effect was only a split second long, but it was enough to dissipate the fire whip long enough for Jack to dart out of the way with his bag.

"Th-that was.. f-full.." Asmo stammered as Jack slung the back onto his back and began to run.

[Jack thinking Asmo's words are an offer to join the knights accepts, only to be shot down. He refuses to hand over the sheathe which starts a fight with the knights, who he is now running from.]
Re: The South Gate


...That could have gone a lot better.

My shotgun-wielding colleague levels his weapon at the fleeing Jack, but before he can pull the trigger again I have him pinned against the wall of one of the shops, one of my USPs pressed against his stomach.

"Enough!" I hiss through my mask, "If we scare him off now, we'll never get the fucking sheathe. You keep firing that and you could hit a bystander, too." Releasing the knight, I turn to the leader of our group. "Asmodeus, chasing him won't do us any good; he's too damn fast. Let me try and talk to him, without having these fools ready to threaten him," I ask the angel, with an angry glare at my fellow knights with their weapons drawn.

If I can reason with Jack, without threatening him or shooting at him, I may be able to convince him to give us the sheathe. If not, then my more aggressive compatriots will get their way, and the current bearer of the sheathe will have a group of heavily armed Knights chasing him through the streets of Iwaku City.

And that's something I'd really rather avoid, if it's possible.

Preventing the Knight with the shotgun from firing upon Jack again, Grant asks Asmodeus if he can pursue the bearer of the sheathe and attempt to reason with him, as he would rather avoid having the Knights chasing Jack through the streets of Iwaku City.
Re: The South Gate

The sun slowly peered out of the window of the small bedroom. It gave enough light to illuminate the room in a golden radiance which reflected off even the dull silver fur of the Draakon Seran asleep in the bed. It was the symbol of the morning. A new day. The sign of awakening.
<o:p> </o:p>
Sun…ugh…now I HAVE to get up…<o:p></o:p>

<o:p> </o:p>
Kiru slowly stirred out of bed, scratching his head as he looked to the window. With a few quick taps on the black belt wrapped around his right arm, he felt air purge through his fur as the KEUS absorbed the free particles of dirt which clung to his fur and hair. For his equivalent of a shower, it certainly didn't feel refreshing, but it did the job. With another few taps, a set of navy blue clothing appeared on his body in a flash of bright neon light.
<o:p> </o:p>
With a yawn, Kiru stretched lazily and gave a relaxed sigh. He turned to the table next to the bed and looked at a ragged strip of black cloth coiled up and compact. It reminded him of something important as he wrapped it around his head, making sure his hair didn't bother his vision.
<o:p> </o:p>
"It's been…seven days now."
Why he spoke this aloud, he was not sure, but it reminded him of the world he came from. How he was flung out of his world away from his friends who relied on him. He felt he had failed them, even though he would not have been able to control his being flung into Iwaku.
<o:p> </o:p>
Iwaku. It was a strange place. Where the seemingly impossible was possible and where sometimes the possible became impossible. A place full of both consistencies and contradictions. A world divided by chaos and order. To Kiru, it was relatable. The world he had come from was particularly similar, although the outlook there was much grimmer. Here, at least, there was some sort of peace.
<o:p> </o:p>
But no matter how much effort is put in to making the world a better place, there was no such thing as a perfect world. The night he first came into Iwaku proved this much.

<kiru's memories="" -="" one="" week="" earlier="">Kiru's Memory - One Week Earlier
<o:p> </o:p>
Kiru had been exploring the city, searching for answers. Perhaps a way back home. He wasn't sure what he would find, but it was better than doing nothing. As he was walking down a street, he heard something like a fight breaking out within one of the inns on the street. Curious, he went inside.
<o:p> </o:p>
"…and I feel I'm being discriminated due to race! You charged that human much less than what you're offering me to stay the night!"
The wolf shapeshifter barked (literally) at the man at the bar.
<o:p> </o:p>
"I-I'm sorry, but you are mistaken. It is the same price for anyone. Now, if you don't stop, I'll have to ask you to--"
<o:p> </o:p>
The wolf growled. "Bullshit! You humans are all the same with your prejudices against those who look differently!"
<o:p> </o:p>
Why does this sound so familiar…? Kiru watched in awe as he stood near the door. He couldn't believe what he was hearing: complete and blatant ignorance for what someone was talking.
<o:p> </o:p>
"Get out of my inn with your wild accusations, you--"

<o:p> </o:p>
"Accusations?! They're fact!"
The wolf lunged over the counter and grabbed the man by the shirt. Both men looked ready to knock each other out.
<o:p> </o:p>
Kiru had had enough. He felt himself lunge forward in an attempt to intercept the two fighting. He felt time slow down around him as he rushed into the wolf, making his target lose his grip and stagger back to his bottom.
<o:p> </o:p>
The patrons grew silent to only mumbles throughout the room as the wolf quickly got up to his feet and lunged towards the Seran. As it seemed he was about to hit Kiru, the wolf ran into thin air as he crashed against the wall. The wolf angrily shook his head and glared up at the dull silver being.
<o:p> </o:p>
"What the hell is your problem? Don't you see this place is racist? Don't you see what they're doing—"
<o:p> </o:p>
"No. I don't."
Kiru's demeanor turned from his sarcastic face into one of outright seriousness. "Anyone with common sense can tell you're merely trying to intimidate the man." He walked up to the wolf slowly as he continued speaking. "Discrimination? Prejudice? These aren't words to use lightly, let alone to use for your own personal gain."
<o:p> </o:p>

"You don't know what it's like! How would—"
<o:p> </o:p>
"Imagine being looked upon with a scowl by every person in this room before you even spoke a word. Imagine being unable to even enter a building, let alone give patronage just because of the way you look or what you are. Imagine being hated by nearly everyone without question." The Seran spoke with words that seemed to be backed by personal experience, as though each of those words told a story. He crouched down to the wolf and stared at him. "Those are the only times those words should be used. And you use them to save a little bit of money?"
<o:p> </o:p>

The shapeshifter gave a low growl as he stood back up and gave a slight glare at the Seran, walking out of the building.
<o:p> </o:p>
The patrons continued about their business as the Seran sighed with relief. One less unnecessary fight and perhaps something learned out of it…there's my good deed for the day. Kiru turned around and began walking towards the door.
<o:p> </o:p>
"Hey goat-man, you have a moment?" The presumed owner of the inn beckoned to Kiru.
<o:p> </o:p>
The result was him given a place to stay in turn for being the nightly "security" for the small inn. It wasn't as large or grand as the Gatekeeper's Tavern, but it was quiet. Something Kiru was fairly unaccustomed to…but grew to like.
<o:p> </o:p>
<kiru's memories="" -="" one="" week="" earlier=""> * * *</kiru's>
<kiru's memories="" -="" one="" week="" earlier=""></kiru's>​
<kiru's memories="" -="" one="" week="" earlier=""> <o:p> </o:p>
Kiru walked out into the soon-to-be busy street north of the South Gate. He took a large breath of air and sighed. By day, he searched for ways to get back home. At night, he returned to the inn to take his "responsibility". Unfortunately, he was not sure where to go today. He had been most everywhere in the city and still had not found anything to help him with where to go or what to do.
<o:p> </o:p>
Suddenly, gun shots rang out near the South Gate. Kiru quickly ran into the street and stared down, trying to see if he could see if he could make out anything. As he stared down, he saw a red haired young man blazing towards him before darting into an alley way near the Inn.
<o:p> </o:p>
…looks like I found some sort of lead!<o:p></o:p>

<o:p> </o:p>
Kiru ran towards the alley the man ran in and followed after him. If the people who fired the gunshots were going after him, he'd rather help the one being chased not be found than having more guns be fired and, possibly, people outside of the fight hurt.
<o:p> </o:p>
He darted through the maze of the alleys attempting to find a trail of the man. Finally, he managed to spot him going around a corner. He saw the man dart into another part of the alley and ran to the entrance of where the man entered. Kiru saw him leaning against the wall taking slow deep breaths.
<o:p> </o:p>
"You run pretty fast."

<o:p> </o:p>
The red head glared up at Kiru and stood, attempting to draw a weapon.
<o:p> </o:p>
Kiru held out his hands. "Whoa whoa whoa! I'm on your side! I'm not the one firing gunshots that caused me to get involved in the first place!" He gave a sigh. "Looks like my string of quiet mornings has ended." Kiru walked deeper into the alley looking back to see if anyone had followed them. The Seran looked back at the man with his calm blue eyes. "Are you alright?"


Kiru wakes up in the morning and goes outside to hear gunshots. He sees Jack run away and follows him, eventually catching up to him. Upon coming to a stop, Kiru reveals himself to Jack and asks if he is alright.
<kiru's memories="" -="" one="" week="" earlier="">
Re: The South Gate

Jack was half crouched, hands on his knees, panting, when the Seran entered the alleyway. Jack eyed the creature somewhat suspiciously, but decided quite quickly that, friend or foe, he was not one of the knights. Asmodeus, he knew, was one for tradition, and there wouldn't be a knight in the land that wasn't at least wearing some purple insignia.

"I'm not trying to draw a weapon" Jack said, through heavy breaths as he pulled something out of his pocket "It's not a weapon, id be faster than this if it was gonna be" He said, waving the small plastic wrapper at the Seran, it had the word 'Snickers' written in crumpled writing on it.

"Chocolate bar, want some?" Jack said, taking a bite out of the half eaten snickers.

"Uhm. uh.. no thanks.." Kiru replied warily.

"Fair enough.." Jack replied, eating the rest of it and poking the empty wrapper into a pocket in his bag, which lay next to the wall. "Oh.. and I'm fine by the way.. just... confluence is strong around here.. makes me have stamina.. which is annoying.."

"Surely.. having stamina would be-"

"Nah.. no stamina as in something have no price being priceless.. ya know? I can run for a very long time if I can reality bend.. but.. hmmm" Jack lay back against the wall, and checked his watch absent mindedly. "You got the time.. uh.."

"Kiru... and.. not the exact time.. no.." The Seran replied, a little perplexed at the calmness of the young man, given he was being shot at a few minutes ago.

"Ah.. damn.. me neither apparently.. Jack by the way.." He held out his hand for a shake "Call me Porg" His eyes seemed to glint a little with this assertion. "Good to have someone on my side, thankyou Kiru. Now.. would you be able to tell me if that big building over there.. the one with the words 'The South Gate' on it.."

"I believe it is called 'The South Gate'"

"Excellent.. now.. 'The South Gate'.. it looks a lot like a transport hub from where I'm standing, would it be a transport hub? Oh please say it's a transport hub!" Jack gave a smile at this , which seemed a little out of place considering the words to Kiru.

"I.. am led to believe it is a transport hub yes.."

"Fantastic! Off I go then! You are more than willing to join me Kiru!" And with that, Jack grabbed his rucksack, swinging it up onto his back. Jack began to walk away, pausing at the end of the alley to see if his new friend was coming.

[Jack and Kiru have a short conversation in the alley, before Jack, confirming that The South Gate is a transport hub goes to leave, inviting Kiru along.]
Re: The South Gate


There was only silence in the wake of Grant's request. Asmodeus was slumped against the opposite shop window, his knees drawn up against his chest, arms wrapped around them. The angel's shoulderblades were tensing compulsively. He was trying to bring his wings around his body, even though he had lost them 18 years ago.

The gathered knights stood patiently, waiting. They had seen Asmodeus do this before - bury his head behind his knees and arms, curling up to escape the world.

And who could really blame him? With Grumpy's curse upon him, he was forced to relive the days of genocide and tyranny that bore his name. And thanks to those same Knights who stood around him now, he was faced with a constant reminder of the suffering to come.

Darkness behind and darkness ahead.

All Asmodeus really had was the frail light of these present moments, the space inside his arms and legs where he could escape the scorns of time. His safe place...

But even that seemed fragile. He had gone to Jack with the purest of intentions, and even that.... even this simple meeting... had broken down into violence.

What hope was there for Iwaku, when all things were twisted by the Cycle to calamity and heartache?

The Knights waited, feeling as always how delicately their fellowship was hinged. For what hope would Knighthood have should angels falter...?

In time, Asmodeus lifted his head again and looked up at Grant. He reached out, taking the doctor's arm and pulling himself back to his feet. "Yes... yes, Doctor. Let the doctor go..."

He touched Grant's face with his other hand, leaning closer, his words an insistent plea. "You have to make him understand. Jack's just a boy. I can't let him join the knights... I can't let anyone else get hurt... because of me. Please, he's not safe with the Sheathe... they'll come for him...."


"He's too young to..."

"Alright," repeated Grant, loosening Asmodeus's grip, soothing him. "I'll find him."

Asmodeus calmed a little, his masked face lowering as he composed himself. His fingers uncurled from Grant's robes and smoothed the creases. "Yes... yes. We'll meet back here... noon... at noon." He looked up again then turned to address the Emissaries by the wagons. "We must make travel arrangements. South to Shapeshift Town... there we are bound."

The servants around the carts began unpacking the supply bags, a bustle of activity commencing. Only the masked Knights remained still.

"I must make haste to Iwaku Castle... speak with the Pr.. King... the King... King Rory, yes..." He patted Grant's shoulder as he moved away, "Go..."

As the doctor departed in pursuit of Jack, Asmodeus reached out and grabbed the arm of another Legacy survivor, their masked faces turning to meet each other. "Chaos gave us those swords for a reason... they must only be drawn in defence..."

The swordsman stared at him for a moment, then pulled out of his grip, moving away towards the carts with the shotgun Knight. The angel let them go... he let their insolence go unchecked...

After all, how could he chastise them, when they had witnessed the end of all things... when they knew the darkness that was coming?

How could he blame them for being impatient?

An Emissary approached down the street, leading a fresh horse towards Asmodeus. He took it by the reins, nodding his thanks to the servant. "I will return at noon. There must be more prophecies... more heroes coming. The King will know..."

Asmodeus lunged up into the saddle, slumping forward against the horse's back as it set off in a gallop down the streets. The servants and other Knights stepped aside, masked faces glaring indifferently at their troubled leader.

Asmodeus was northward bound.

Asmodeus allows Grant to go after Porg alone. He then sets off to meet with the King, leaving the other Knights to make preparations for their journey to Shapeshift Town
Re: The South Gate

Kiru blinked in surprise. Porg seemed to barely fit in even this strange world. Of all the people Kiru had seen and met in Iwaku City, Porg just did not seem to fit under anything Kiru could place.

This could mean that, maybe, Porg was not of Iwaku, but from another world! If that were the case, then maybe the Seran could return home upon figuring out how travel between worlds works.

This is the best lead I've gotten in the week I've spent here. And that innkeeper said I'm free to leave the moment I found what I was looking for...

Kiru shrugged and gave a grin. "You're in trouble, I've been wanting to leave the city for many reasons...why the hell not? Besides, I feel a bit obligated now to help you, considering people are trying to kill you. Though, I would suggest we stay within the alleyways to get to the South Gate. Walking in plain sight of those guys is probably not the brightest idea in the world..."

Porg nodded in agreement. "Do you know where to go from here?"

"Not exactly."
Kiru walked up next to the red head. "But, it shouldn't be too difficult. The South Gate seems to imply a particular direction."

The two began to navigate the winding alleyways of Iwaku City, heading closer to the transport hub of the South Gate. Although progress was slow, it seemed that no one was aware of their presence.

Kiru looked around to make sure no one was following them as they continued onward. "No sign of anyone. That's a good thing." The Seran gave a sigh. He needed confirmation to see if his hunch was right. If he did not ask the question, he would be merely assuming. "I have to ask though, since you seem like you're not from around here: Are you perhaps from"


Kiru decides to follow Porg to the travel hub of the South Gate. The two move through the back alleys to keep from provoking unwanted attention towards the South Gate. As they travel, Kiru asks if Porg is from this "place".
Re: The South Gate


Moving away from the group, I initially attempt to trace Jack's steps, but quickly realise there's little sense in this; the bearer is a damn fast runner, and he's got a headstart. Stopping, I remove my robes and mask, revealing orange cargo trousers and a vest, over which is my harness and backpack.

Stuffing my robes and mask into the bag, I holster my USP and begin to move at a running speed. Jack's on the run; he probably thinks we're after him, out to capture or kill him in order to get the sheathe. If those fucking idiots hadn't attacked him, this would be a lot easier.

So where would he go? Where would he run to, hide in or at? There's the Gatekeeper Tavern, yes, but that's a little on the obvious side. There are plenty of other shops, taverns and bars open, even this early in the morning, that Jack could hide in, but I have a feeling he wants to put as much distance as possible between him and us. Can't say I blame him, either, after that astounding display of diplomatics back there.

I'm not a violent man; there was a time when I didn't believe in violence at all. Times have changed me, and not for the better, but I stand firm beside Asmodeus' policy of only attacking in defence or by way of protection. My fellow Knights were out of order back in the street. We're all feeling the strain, we all want to stop events from repeating themselves... but we cannot carry out wanton acts of violence. More often than not, it just harms our cause.

So running through an alleyway, I make for the South Gate. If Jack wants to get away, this is the place to go; there are hundreds of railways taking him all across Iwaku, meaning he could go anywhere. However, if I manage to catch up with him at the station, I will be able to reason with him before he disappears. I also have the advantage of him not knowing what I look like. Hell, I'm not exactly the living embodiment of knightliness; an ever-expanding stomach, beard, scars, shaved head... hell, I look more like a homeless man than a knight.

Which will work in my favour, all in all. Asmodeus is right; we have to get the sheathe. But we can do so without needless violence. This world's seen enough of it.

Hell, I've seen enough of it.

Grant removes his robes and mask, so Jack does not know who and what he is, and sets off after him. He theorises that the bearer of the Sheathe will have made for the South Gate, as it is a good place to vanish in. He hopes to spot Jack and reason with him before he leaves.
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Re: The South Gate

"I have to ask though, since you seem like you're not from around here: Are you perhaps from"

Jack smiled a little at the question, allowing himself a small chuckle at some private joke. "Heh.. questions are always so hard to answer aren't they..?" he said, more to the world than to Kiru. "Well.. kinda.. I guess.."

Jack stared up to the sky as he talked, hands on the straps of his rucksack as he carried the huge bag through the alleys and backstreets of Iwaku City. "I.. honestly can't say I remember where I originally came from, I've always been somewhat of a traveller, flitting from place to place, lord knows how I ended up with the ability to do so either.

However.. if people were to ask where I'm from.. I would say Iwaku. I have friends here, good friends, and I guess.. it's one of the only places I truly feel at home that ive ever been to.

but, yeah.. I have come from another place, just got back, and... things have changed.. suddenly everything is different, and I'm not entirely sure as to why. That's why I seem unfamiliar with the places around here.."

Jack's expression suddenly lightened up, and he looked to Kiru with a grin "Still, it's an adventure right?"

They reached The South Gate not soon after, stepping inside to a fairly empty foyer with several small food stands and newsagents, a few computer terminals floating around.

Jutting from the walls in various places were turning cogs and pipes, and everything gleamed in a brassy copper colour. "Ooo, Steampunk, I like Steampunk, very nice! I like this place!" Jack remarked as he walked into the station, looking for a ticket booth.

"Ah there it is! Gimme a sec I'll get us some tickets!" He said, dropping his bag by Kiru's feet and jogging lightly off to the line-less booth.

[Jack talks about his origins to Kiru and then goes to buy tickets as they arrive at the South Gate.]
Re: The South Gate

Aki sat cross-legged on the floor facing his sister, she had been sitting like that for a whine now but he knew better than to try to bring her out of it. "Thats it, I'm going to get something to eat." he said, standing and turning towards the kitchen of their small home. "Get me something to please." Aya said, her soft voice making Aki turn back. "What ever you're having is good." Her eyes had opened and she was looking at his with a small smile. "So you could hear me.. you..." his expression of anger cracked, revealing it to be a ruse. "Alright sis, but we need to talk."

He returned moments later with a few sandwedges on a large plate and laid it on the floor between them, "I know what you want to talk about." Aya said mysteriously. "You want to go traveling again.

"You make it sound like I've been out of the city." he said eying his sister "But you now we've never been further than the southern gate, let alone seen anything interesting."

"And just where do you want to go this time?"

"I want to go to see the shapeshifters.... Before you start raining on my parade think about it. One, the shifters are know to be friendly. Two, we're shifters of sorts... you know.." Aya nodded "And once we're there we may be allowed into the castle! We may see the shifter royalty."

There were a few moments of silence as Aya thought, her feature uncertain. "I think we can get there without much trouble...." she reasoned, secretly sharing her brother's desire to see more of the world. "Promise after this you'll be quiet about traveling for a while?"

"You're the best sis! I'll start packing....."

"Don't you thingk we should plan a little first, and eat?"

Aki sighed.. "Alright... What do you think we'll need"

A few hours later Aki locked the door shouldering a large backpack, sword at his side, then began walking towards the southern gate Aya trailing close behind.


Aki and Aya decide to visit shifter town.
Re: The South Gate

It has been around two months since Vincent, or Faramond as he was called, arrived in this city. A personal message for him had mysteriously transported him to this world, and not to the new roleplay promised in the personal message. This bothered him much, but, the basic necessities of life had to be given priority.

From the open area in the western outskirts of the city where he mysteriously appeared, he made his way accross the river into the mall, where he did some odd jobs, and gathered information. There, he found out that he was transported into Iwaku World, the same world that he, under the username megane-kun, had participated in. However, he ended up in the city, rather than in the forest where he chose megane-kun to be in.

Wanting to find out how he ended up being here, and to find out how he can return to real life, he then prepared himself for a journey. But, for him to start the journey, he must have the appropiate equipment, and to for that, he must have enough money. Thus, he ended staying for in the mall for longer, doing more odd jobs for him to save enough money for the journey.

Soon, he had enough money, for fares, and for new changes of clothes. He bid his employers at the mall goodbye, and headed out towards the South Gate.

He chose to walk, rather than to take a ride, out of concern that he might run out of money soon. He didn't know how long this journey would last, and he thought it wise to spend as little money as possible.

After around half a day of walking, he soon found himself near the South Gate.

"Wow, this place looks so different. It looks so... real!" Faramond gasped as he entered the bustling transportation hub known as the South Gate. "Well, I noticed some changes in the mall too, but this... this is just... surreal," Faramond thought as he walked his way towards the western tower, where the train stations are.

"... Yeah... just surreal" he thought as he admired the magical trains coming and going the stations. "I wished I have read the fluff more, so that I would have known what I am about to see here.... Well, not that I expected to end up being here after all...."

"Oh well, I'd better not think about those things for now." he told himself as he entered a small convenience store near the station entrance. "I'd better check if I have enough supplies. And oh, perhaps I should grab a bite too, before I board the train"
Re: The South Gate

The twins wondered through the station hub, Aki looking in every direction taking in every sight and sound. "Isn't this pace great? Do you remember when they where still building it?" he asked Aya beaming at her.

Aya grabbed his arm, she had never been comfortable in crowds"Tickets are over there. But I wouldn't mind something to drink." her voice was so quiet Aki almost didn't hear her.

"Alright, this way sis. Aki replied pulling her over to a table and ordering two fruit juices. "I'll be back in a sec.

As Aki went off to buy tickets to Shifter town leaving Aya with the bags she noticed a man who seemed to be as taken with the station as her brother was. She remained in her seat until the drinks arrived, almost falling from her seat out of shock she had been so busy looking at the stranger, who even though he was dressed in Iwaku fashion didn't seen to belong.

SUMMERY: The twins arive at the station and AKI leaves Aya to gey tickets. As she sits at the resturant she noitices Framond
Re: The South Gate

Faramond spied a convenience store next to the ticket sellers, and soon enough, entered it. It was a small convenience store, with outdoor seats for those who want to consume the food they've bought, or for those commuters waiting for someone.

Faramond headed toward the aisles of packed food, and snacks. A train journey would be long, and it's a good idea to have some snacks ready.

"Am I doing the right thing? Will talking to megane-kun really help? I am not sure where he is now, but I suppose he's somewhere in the forest...." Faramond wondered as he walked the aisles of the convenience store, randomly picking up various food items.

"And, we're in the same situation now, megane-kun and I. I don't know who's controlling me at the moment, and what his intentions are, but if he thinks I should go and meet megane-kun, then I will go and meet him, whether I like it or not."

Faramond then went over to the counter to pay for the items he bought. The convenience store clerk, took the money Faramond handed to her, and gave him three slices of pizza along with the items he bought.

"Wha... What's this?!" Faramond gasped at the stranged turn of events, "You sure I can take this?"

The convenience store clerk nodded in reply. Unsure as to what's happening, Faramond thanked the clerk, shrugged his shoulders and left the counter.

"My oh my.... now, what to do with this..." Faramond thought. He then spied a girl sitting on one of the chairs next to a long table. She seemed to have been waiting for somebody, but, nevertheless, Faramond approached her and gave her the two slices of pizza.

"You waiting for somebody?" Faramond asked the girl.

Faramond muses about his situation while buying food. And after having been given extra food by the cashier, he goes over to Aya and gives the extra silces of pizza to her.
Re: The South Gate

Aya watched the stranger approach smiling nervously. As he got close she looked towards the ticked counter, more to avoid eye-contact than to check for her brother. Then he was standing right at the table and speaking to her.

<b>"Waiting for somebody?"</b>

She looked up at him and smiled nervously, before nodding slowly, glancing at her brother's bag that she could never ope to lift, and the extra juice in the middle of the table. "timidly she reached out with both hands and took the offered slices, she had to admit she was still a little hungry.

'You have to say something.' she thought to herself putting one of the slices on a serviette for Aki.

"Ummm..." she began her voice quiet. "Yes..... my brother.... thank you...." she blushed with embarrassment from her less-than-complete sentences. He has going to think she was being rude.....

"Wow, there's something you don't see everyday. Aki said coming back from the ticket counter. "Aya speaking to someone!" he held his mouth in mock surprise, causing Aya to look at the floor with renewed embarrassment as her brother grinned. Aki then picked up the slice of pizza from the serviette and held it up to him, she didn't say anything but he seemed to understand from the look she gave him.

"Umm...... thanks..... sorry what is your name? I'm Aki and this is my sister Aya." se said tirning to Framond as Aya began eating her pizza.
Re: The South Gate

The girl averted her eyes from Faramond and shifted her eyes towards the ticket counter. Faramond followed the girl's line of sight with his own eyes and saw a young man approaching them.

"Perhaps that's who she's waiting for..." Faramond thought as he again turned his eyes towards the girl, who smiled nervously and nodded. She shifted her eyes towards the bag lying beside the table, and on towards the juice on the middle of the table.

She then timidly reached out for the slices of pizza and took them. She put one of the slices on a serviette, and cleared her throat.

"Ummm..." she began softly. "Yes..... my brother.... thank you...." she blushed with embarrasment.

"Wow, there's something you don't see everyday." the young man said as he approached the two, "Aya speaking to someone!"

"Oh, so this girl's name is Aya...." Faramond thought as he smiled. It seemed to him that the two are twins, for the two looked very much alike.

The young man held his mouth in mock surprise, this caused Aya to hang her head lower with renewed embarrasment, and the young man, to grin. Aya then picked up the slice of pizza from the serviette and held it up to him. The young man took the slice, looked at his twin sister, and then looked at Faramond.

"Umm...... thanks..... sorry what is your name? I'm Aki and this is my sister Aya." he said turning to Framond as Aya began eating her pizza.

"Me? My name's Faramond, and I am a traveller of sorts. Nice to meet you two" he said as he stood up. He motioned Aki to sit on the chair he had just vacated. He then pulled an extra chair from a neighboring table and sat on it.

"Well, it's a bit rare to see kids like you travelling alone," Faramond said as he took a bite on his slice of pizza. "But I guess that's how things should really be. Explore the world while you're young. It'll be a bit too late once you get older."
Re: The South Gate

"Well actually this is out first time out of the city."Aki said sitting down "We're going to see the shifters." he said sounding exited.

Aya who had been sitting quietly nibbling her pizza suddenly spoke. "You're not from here are you? I mean you're not from Iwaku..... she seemed slightly embarrassed "I'm... sorry I don't know why I...." she looked towards her brother for help.

Aki smiled at her reassuringly and gave her a look which seemed to work as she smiled back. Nothing had been said but it seemed as though there had been a conversation between them.
Re: The South Gate

Early morning at a hub of business and transport. Gunshots have broken the strange silence, yet the streets remain emptied. Where is the noise of trains and ferries to drown them out? Are these sounds muted by magic? Where are the modest trickles of early commuters? Are they, too, invisible? Where is truth? Where is Confluence?

Coffee slides his fingers--spirit fingers--along the glowing stones of the Fourth Wall and notices the device in effect. It is too much, he decides. A wave of his hand, and the device begins to crumble, slowly, but he spares it from complete destruction.

Bodies appear suddenly in the kiosks, a busker here and there setting post. A few workers--the white collared, blue collared, spike-and-chain collared shapeshifters, and the cloak-clad--rush and stumble from the bars and inns after breakfasts of hot wings and hangover remedies. Some carry briefcases and totes while others, in defiance of hierarchy, comically hurry along, still packing as they run, shirts and undergarments dangling from open hammerspace portals.

Self-employed vendors--some elderly, some obviously unlicensed alchemists in their stylishly open and disheveled robes--push along carts of homemade Cure potions and herbal remedies, looking to sell their cheaper wares to the early crowds before being driven off by those who wish to sell similar, more legitimate products for higher prices. One of the elder vendors is given a pamphlet by a pair of young, fringe liberal neo-Bread Cultists--college students from the University--who smile nervously. He shoos them, angrily, and they politely and hurriedly retreat.

Coffee smiles inwardly, and his body becomes something corporeal, retconned into a leisurely gait. Freefloating tickers of text flake and fall away from their orbit around his body. His sandals become dusty and worn, his skin and clothing losing their glow in favor of dull earth tones as they both age perceptively. His sedge hat shrinks, its size becoming more reasonable and less obtrusive. He is unrecognizable.

He speaks aloud, letting the perception of onlookers consolidate the reality of this action. The senile and disturbed, the dreamwoven hosts of spirits are all known to talk to themselves.

"It's still fragile. Things are still shifting, falling and settling into place.... Yes, some things are much too settled for their own good, I agree."

Peering through the lattice of his hat he watches the arriving travelers disembarking.

Fresh faces with wonderment worn on their sleeves. Travelers and strangers exchanging names and mannered introductions. Stylishly eclectic traveling gear. Swords on the back. Hooded cloaks and selfless acts.

He smiles. It figures that Jack can be found here.

After an ill premonition, it is of some comfort to be reminded that this land--this world--yet holds so much potential. But he also knows that most will fade to the background, spear-carriers if ever again described at all, shouting doomed challenges of "who goes there?" against successors and former colleagues before meeting tragic and ignominous endings. Sadly, that is not what he seeks.

But before he can continue onward, he notices a strange young man in one of the outdoor dining areas--strange in both his uniquely innocuous appearance and something else...

"She's right, isn't she?"

Faramond, Aki, and Aya, necks craning in startled unison, suddenly found themselves face to hat with an old man who seemed to be smiling, though it was difficult to be certain. His lips were hidden behind a mug of steaming liquid that, given the way his hat's brim dipped, he could only be pretending to sip. They waited, half-startled. for an introduction, a reasonable thing to expect given where they were, yet the old stranger pretended not to notice either.

"I could use someone like that--with an outsider's perspective." He pulled the cup away, revealing his smile to brother and sister. "Someone with good instincts too. Accurate ones. Not just jumping at shadows--at least not at the harmless ones. Except maybe as one of those glomp greetings that seem so popular with the youth. But that's not here; that's not there! Enough, enough." His free hand swatted the air, as if to dispel his own rambling. "I need a favor, and I'd really like all three of you to accompany me. Do a good job, and I'll pay your way to wherever you might be headed. My clothing may indicate otherwise, but that's just from frugality. So will you do it? Don't mind if I sit down while you decide, do you? I've come a long way, and I'm nearly as old as the soil below."

Without waiting, he pulled a chair from a nearby table and sat himself down gingerly, exhaling, as if it might as well have been a warm bath. While Faramond and the twins conferred among themselves, he reached again for his mug. This time taking care to tip back his hat slightly before sipping. Yet through the latticework, he continued to study them.

Coffee uses his meta-powers to nudge the unrealistically quiet and underutilized South Gate awake. Everyday life at the South Gate resumes. Then Coffee assumes the form of a mysterious yet unrecognizable old man in order to blend in while searching for Porg. Instead he sees Vincent, and after noticing something strange about the young man, he invites the trio to assist him in an unspecified task in exchange for paying for their tickets.

I know it's long, but my imagination ran away with me and I wanted to give people ideas. It's too easy to treat each area as just a stepping stone. An empty room to pass through on your way to the next, with trees or buildings in the background that no one interacts with. It's not! It's a big world! Have fun. Make stuff up! That's what RP is about.

One more note: This post was inspired by the song, "This World" by Zero 7
Re: The South Gate

"Well actually this is out first time out of the city." Aki said sitting down "We're going to see the shifters." he went on with excitement in his voice.

Aya who had been sitting quietly nibbling her pizza suddenly spoke. "You're not from here are you? I mean you're not from Iwaku....." she seemed slightly embarrassed "I'm... sorry I don't know why I...." she looked towards her brother for help.

Faramond was surprised at Aya's words. It is true that he's not from this world, but he tried to blend in as much as he could. "I'm not emitting those weird vibes, am I?" Faramond thought as he looked around, and began to feel as if the others are looking funny at him.

"She's right, isn't she?"

Faramond was startled to see an old man behind him. A generic old man it seems to him, but this is precisely the kind of old man you'd expect to be narrating these kinds of story. However still, there's something different about this old man.

"Wait... wait... I think remember this guy! Is he who I think he is?" Faramond thought as he started to recognize the newcomer.

"I could use someone like that--with an outsider's perspective." he continued, ignoring their surprise. He pulled the cup away, revealing his smile to brother and sister.

"... This guy is really familiar... but who can he be?" Faramond asked himself as he looked at the old man, and scanned him from head to toe. "Damn!! I should have really paid more attention to the character descriptions!" Faramond thought as he shook his head.

The old man continued, ignoring any stuff around him. "Someone with good instincts too. Accurate ones. Not just jumping at shadows--at least not at the harmless ones. Except maybe as one of those glomp greetings that seem so popular with the youth. But that's not here; that's not there! Enough, enough." The old man's free hand swatted the air, as if to dispel his own rambling. The old man's face then turned serious, "I need a favor, and I'd really like all three of you to accompany me. Do a good job, and I'll pay your way to wherever you might be headed. My clothing may indicate otherwise, but that's just from frugality. So will you do it? Don't mind if I sit down while you decide, do you? I've come a long way, and I'm nearly as old as the soil below."

Without waiting, the old man pulled a chair from a nearby table and sat himself down gingerly, exhaling, as if it might as well have been a warm bath.

"Before deciding, I want to know your name. You know, common courtesy. We can't work for a generic old man, you know." Faramond said, smiling.

"Yeah, even if this is an important quest given by the game's narrator, I would still have to abide by this world's 'common sense' and ask for the name anyways. Besides, I think I know this old man." Faramond thought as he took the last bite off his pizza.
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