Tech one of Mel's personal team members and the engineer in her side group was working on a rare type of energy one that she had started when she was about 10 years old. She was a master of machines and energy but her T/S project was big hard and a private deal so private she kept her configurations in a notebook that never left her side.
She was very close to making a new type of energy with the T/S project and was on her way to see Mel about it when she bumped into Luna hiding behind the wall around the corner from the SOLDIER offices. "I'm sorry. I was so focused on my work I didn't see you.
Mel standing behind Hyde waited to see if Neon was even in his room. She turned not only at the sound of Tech's voice but what also sounded like a nervous heartbeat. "Tech Are you ok? Who is that with you.?"
Mel was always the type to ask questions and she never liked the feeling of being watch but she felt it now.
Even through her mild haze and confusion, Luna's feline ears flickered to the sound of oncoming footsteps, clueing her in with enough time to quickly turn her head and peek over her shoulder before feeling a rather harsh bash against her backside. Weak from the lack of food and cranky from the lack of sleep, she stumbled forward, catching her balance and turning on heels. "Hey! What in the f--," she paused, holding herself from saying the next few words. "Watch where you're--," again, a short pause as her rage quelled and her situation became more apparent; very visible to everyone. Her eyes flicked around the girl in front of her just as it did with the four in front of Neon's door, measuring and analyzing within milliseconds before tearing herself away, turning and refocusing on the charged voice reaching out to... Tech?
Luna was unsure if she was being singled out or if that oblivious girl was actually named 'Tech'. Her eyes slid to the ceiling, running through the tech team roster - hundred of names, applications and resumes she forced herself to digest over the course of a day and a half in preparation for taking on Slait's role as acting Tech Lead. Nevertheless, the name 'Tech' came up vacant and unfamiliar which, if Luna's eyes came across it, would never have been forgotten.
Thus, making a snap conclusion, this 'Tech' character was either not in the system or was going by a very... unimaginative nick name.
Regardless, Luna turned fully to the four in the way of Neon's quarters, anticipating some sort of inquiry.
Tenack had arrived just minutes earlier by a shuttle from the Air Dreadnaught Endeavor. The Endeavor was currently out conducting patrols of the territories. It had been ages since Tenack was last at the base, besides a few hours a few months back he had been on board the Endeavor for the last few years. With the war over and victory over Red Shield and the Elite guard he knew there would be plenty of time to relax and watch over the spoils of his victory.
So far the 4 sectors had remained calm and and for the most part peaceful. Reports of a few missing persons had come up but the sector leaders had been able to squash any rumors from getting out. Tenack knew that the labs were reving up their experiments and they needed live subjects. However Tenack had hoped they would of been more selective in choosing their targets.
With his hands held behind his back, his usual HOUND bracelet missing from his arm Tenack felt a bit exposed and vulnerable. He did have his tried and true revolver hanging from a custom black belt. The gun had been with him for longer than Tenack could remember. It had always been dependable to get him out of a spot.
Like a freckle dotting his vision, the very nearsighted Hyde just barely caught a hint of gold out the corner of his eye. At first he'd just thought it a mirage; little did he know that is was the the ever elusive head of tech, Luna Vitesse herself.
"Huh." Hyde shrugged, turning back to the door. But apparently, he was wrong.
"Oh, it's just the Tech's new lady-leader." Hyde mumbled, back against the wall, wearing his smirk like a bow tie. Noting her confusion, he made clarity of Mel's teammate's confusing callsign; "Yeah, I'm talkin' to you! S'matter? Mad that your little disappearing act was foiled this time?" Being the gentlemanly type, he assisted Tech up and brushed Luna off with simultaneous effort, dusting them clean of the SOLDIER department's ruddy floors.
"This cat's been dodging me all week. Almost as evasive as a certain Colonel I know..." Even though he had only one, one could tell Hyde's condescending. "So what can I do for you... Vitesse?" Did he pronounce it right? "You'll have excuse Neon; the King's all holed up in his castle." Hyde said, jutting his thumb back at Neon's elaborately decorated door.
"Inarimyojin?" Inquired Yuki, tilting his head quizzically. Why would Splinter, son of a god, trouble himself with traversing up a hazardous mountain to deliver a message from his father, not to Lord Jiro, but he? "While your word of such a legendary sword does my interest peak, there must be more for which you to ask me, arahitogami."
This all could have been avoided, had the two men embraced some semblance of the modern world and invested in phones.
"A blizzard? A god's request?" Ahh, so that was it. "I see..."
Turning his head aside, the ever-frozen samurai would have never bared a single red-blooded blush, except for now. "Begetting such a request from a god, it is a request I cannot deny. Yet... my confidence in my skills in weather manipulation has been rendered... 'cold' lately." He managed to face the demigod dubiously; "Without my heart, I'm not sure if it can be done. Not by me, anyway..."
While he never once resented his decision to save Chiharu by implanting his heart, the artifact was the source of his power, and while some traces of it were still left in him, they had become somewhat deluded. But, as a man of honor, it was a request with no room for refusal.
"... three sacks of rice and an hourglass." Yuki repeated, his body submerging in the ice-accented hot springs. "I'm sure I can find a way to get that. Yes."
Agreeing to Splinter's, or rather, his father's boons, the undead yokai turned up, also agreeing with him. "A very wise man once said... 'No s**t, Sherlock.'" Before dunking his head completely underwater.
Mel watched Hyde as he helped the two ladies up but she had also noticed Luna's gaze at Tech and when she heard Hyde mention the Luna as the new Tech leader she extended her hand to Luna. "The G-Corp lady. I read your file well what areas I had access too. I'm Mel Reynolds Second Lieutenant of the Suits and before your start on Tech her real name is Mary but she does not like it in fact it offends her greatly and no shes not going to be in your paperwork. Tech works for me and me alone for now." With those words Mel hoped she cleared up the questioning look on Luna's face.
Tech looked up at Mel. "Ma'am I almost have the T/S formula worked out but I'll need a crew to help me finish building the system for it but I'd rather not make it here boss." Tech looked over to Luna feeling like she did something wrong since she had almost gotten yelled at. Tech was not a people person and others scared her a lot Machines were different though.
"My own paternal figure leaves me in the dark so much, even I have a vague curiosity to what goes on in their realm... It can't be helped I'm afraid..." Splinter said while sipping on his tea, down to half a cup now. One leg across the other. "Though... He did say something about a worldly danger and Chiharu. I wonder if it has to do with the current occupation of the demolitionists? Perhaps Balmung has risen from the ashes so soon? The sins mustering something? Even the son of a god is not gifted the ability of foresight." Setting the teacup down Splinter would slowly place his hands in the opposite sleeve and sit there to relax for a moment, before speaking up "I will help as best as I can, though it seems Inari has planned to visit Earth in the distant future... Rather short notice..." Splinter sounded almost annoyed that a god was coming to visit him and his family in the flesh for a few weeks, something most people would honor. Though in a round about way, they were no different than a normal family. "I just hope my troublesome twins don't cause much of a mess... Especially Saka...." He attempted to make small talk now that the business was over.
Saka sneezed, though it was a sign of somebody speaking of him, rubbing his nose he looked over at Luna. "She's cute..." He said almost lazily, though his mind was obviously wandering for him to zone out for such a long period of time. "Hey Hyde... What do you know about Hell Prison? I mean outside of the common knowledge..." He had broken his silence, while aimed at Hyde the question was set to drift the air for anyone who cared to answer.
She dusted off her shorts and blouse, feeling light taps from the unknown man they referred to as Hyde at her back. Luna shook her head, ears twitching as she ran her hands over them, fixing her hair in the process - although, with the lack of sleep and grumpy attitude, she still looked like a slob.
"I wasn't trying to avoid you--" quirking an eyebrow, "whoever you are..," shaking her head in the attempt in being slightly curt to the stranger. "You just haven't been able to find me," her eyes rolling from him to Neon's door as she crossed her arms. "As for me hiding--" cocking her head to the side with a shrug as she took in a deep breath, buying her a little thinking time, "I was simply--" pause, "wondering if maybe this wasn't the greatest time to visit Neon, what with you bashing in his door and shouting at each other." She coughed quietly, gently backing off the agitated tone, noticing her good nature was beginning to falter with each hollow minute.
A brief break let her regain some of her patience, just in time to politely greet yet another new face.
"H-heh.. uh yeah, Mel, pleasure to meet you," her gloved hand grasped firmly around the woman's. "So Tech--," getting cut off rather abruptly as her attention was snatched back to Mel, the back story of 'Tech' slowly coming into light. Luna was impressed that Mel could sense her confusion over Tech, but unfortunately, Mel's last sentence left Luna even more perplexed, clearing some things up but raising even more questions.
"Wait wait.." shaking her head putting her hand to her temple. After reading the Tech Departments SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) and best business practices, this situation of a privatized tech division solely focused on one person, let alone a Second Lieutenant, seemed grossly incorrect.
Every gold piece invested into the GA are invested into project which are approved by Slait - or now... me. Which means there are no extra funds for any side projects or super secret special divisions. Which, in turn, means if said super secret special divisions or projects were to exist, that would waste resources which would ultimate hurt the entire tech division.
Luna's head started to pound thinking through the string of thoughts. She took in a deep breath and sighed... a long sigh....... before deciding to ignore it for now.
"Gah..." she shook, ears twitching as her tail softened and descended slowly. "Pleasure to meet you too, Tech..." she cracked a smile as the words dribbled from her lips, all before hearing the final, third stranger chime in. Now, deeply exhausted, and with the attention lifting from her onto the man in black, she lazily turned to look at him, her nose scrunching up to the smell of blood. "...?" she quirked an eyebrow, squinting a bit as she leaned up against the wall, arms still crossed. The exhaustion, the smell, the thoughts running through her head, everything was making her feel faint.
After a good long wait outside Neon's door Mel got tired of waiting when the strange mark began to glow under her wrapped up hand. Turning to the door her leg had turned to a hard heavy steel form as it came ramming hard enough into the door with enough force to shatter it or send it flying off the door frame. "Neon wake the hell up now." Slamming her fist in the ground she not only pulled the pluming pipes up but her hand bonded to the metal as it formed a metal hose peace.
Water came flowing out like it did for a hose truck they would use to clear streets of rioters right onto Neon. "I don't know what this locking yourself up in your room is for but we need you and your men do too." This was Neon's wake-up call.
Hyde's smart a** giggled from the sidelines. He didn't need to bother Luna about her crankiness, only sit back and watch the poor confused thing shake every hand in the room. By the end of it all, she looked like a fainted Pokemon - and before she could trip over her own shoelaces, Hyde had caught her fumble, outstretching his hand with no obvious effort.
"Hey - you need a coffee or... something?" He asked her, the distance between them merely at an arm's length, until the SOLDIER's glove reacted, possessing a mirotic glow from the alchemical symbol traces into it.
Hyde's eye seemed swallowed, and seemingly out of nowhere an rebel boot came smashing into the door, snapping Hyde and Luna's hands away from each other, and plundering them across the floor. Not long followed before he had to watch Mel blast a powerful stream of water into Neon's room. Most of his curses lay wasted in the noise of her demonstration, but when the water finally died down...
"... wrong with you, are you crazy?!?" Hyde's face had burned red as a tomato by this point, but quelled with the idea of finally seeing their fearless leader after days of isolation.
The six people quietly peeped into the room, the sounds of a weak cough leading them on.
There sat he, the Graffiti King, bowled over amidst several chairs and painting equipment. Behind him, his room was decorated wall-to-wall with murals, minus the large melting blast-mark where the geyser hit.
Shaking off wet hair, they'd find the Graffiti King looking a little worse for ware. His hair was losing it's vibrant, blue color he had always taken so much care in dying, and he had grown an awful five o'clock, not very becoming at all.
Without much of a word, the King stumbled back to his two legs, shaking off some water, and beginning to re-steady his ladder.
"Neon!" Thundered Hyde, Stomping into the room. "Welcome back to planet earth!" As he sloshed through the room, he caught the one-standing table and plucked a bottle from it. The Soldier caught a whiff of it from the top, and his face crinkled like a throwaway note.
The bottle said it all. "You've been drinking Absinth?? It's like poison!"
"Much of modern day art was inspired by Absinth."
"You've hardly touched it."
"Yeah," Lazied Neon, hoisting himself up the latter, beginning to repaint something in the middle of all this chaos. "I'm scared to."
Face met palm. "Listen, Picasso, I don't care what kind of Renascence you're planning, you can't be stuck in this room all..." His words 'came quiet, whence he finally got eye of the room itself. The murals depicted hellish visions, like something out of Dante's Inferno. "What the..."
Turning grimly to the rest of them, dark circles mudding his complexion, Neon's eyes, still suffering some weak glow, shot daggers in towards the center of the group - Tsusaka. "Why do you wanna know about Hell Prison?"
Saka stepped forward slowly, a hand on Hyde's shoulder and another hand reaching into his own jacket to pull out a ceremonial wakizashi wrapped in a white silk. The tip gleaming off of dripping water, the blade was clean and freshly hand crafted. "I don't know, I figured I would take a vacation there. I just hate winter so I figured I could go south of the border where it's always sunny." He said with a snicker before finally cutting the bullshit and his expression changed completely "Well it seems one of our own are in Hell, well maybe not your own. But I owe a favor, I sort of made a promise to myself." Punching Neon on the shoulder lightly it was followed by a grin and a statement. "I still want that sparring match you owe me, when I claw my way out of Hell." He said as he stuffed the blade into Neon's pocket "I need a katana and some purified water, natural spring water." He said taking a strand of the man's hair gently and looking over the frames of his shades slowly. "When I get back, I want to fight you and I mean the real you... Sir." It was obvious whom he had in mind for helping him commit Seppuku,
He turned on a heel and took a step towards Luna, one hand above her head and another taking one of her own. Pale, soft lips placing a kiss to her ring finger's knuckle on her left hand. Speaking in a soft tone, in French. "Une telle beauté, je n'oublierai pas cette rencontre fortuite." Leaning forward he would place a gentle peck to her cheek, speaking in a whisper. "When I return, I would like to get to know you better." Pulling away with a smile he would turn towards Mel. Unstrapping the custom made katana 'Devilcore' he would pass it to her slowly with a bow. "Please hang onto this until my return." The click of his heel he would shoot both Neon and Hyde a look of complete seriousness "We have work to do fellas."
Receiving the blade, Neon stuttered back, as if he had drew some straw of disgust from Tsusaka approaching so close. Following the vampire's declaration and leave, Neon could only stare at the gift he'd been given - a small nihonto, the width of a swallow's tail, gleamed in his already sun-glossed eyes.
Meanwhile, Hyde and the rest of the people outside the sphere of awkward found themselves making a clearing for Tsusaka, Hyde himself tracking the vampire down till he met the clearing. He'd only raised his brow at Tsusaka's modest romantic proposal; sappy first impressions were not unlike him when it came to those of the opposite sex. In the latter quarters, it was ******** weird to still manage to speak perfect French after anointing Neon with a knife and a threat. At least... that's what it sounded like?
"Well... that was weird."
Trigger the young Graffiti King clipping the sword shut, confused, but no less intrigued by Saka's request. Following the vampire till he stood in the same entrance he was standing before, he called him out. "Tsusaka!" Neon's voice echoed down in the large Soldier's dormitory. "Is that a challenge?" Noticeably irked by the way he was acting, Neon drew forth the wakizashi with little emphasis, and a lot of gusto. Rarely did the man pick fights. "Because I'd have no qualms about sending you to Valhalla right now, like you've always wanted." He barked back, his voice as low as a curtain and twice as suspenseful. Dagger now held parallel to his face, the Soldier's Ghi-instilled eyes reflected off the already glimmering blade.
"Yes I want you to kill me, but I refuse to fight you." Saka said, stopped in his tracks, lowering his head and removing the shades from his face before speaking. "I am of Japanese heritage, my father a samurai demigod and my grandfather, Inari." Saka said as he turned to face his old rival, slipping the shades back onto his face slowly. "I ask that you give me one hour before we prepare the ritual, I need to write up a will and make a few final phone calls." He waved his hand in a motion to put Neon at ease. "The only honor in dying in battle is a sign of weakness, I ask that you honor my request of harakiri." He blurted openly, taking a minute to remove the black gloves from his hands slowly. "I give you one hour to prepare the ritual, the only challenge I have to offer you is upon my rise from the ashes." He was speaking of his reincarnation due to his godly heritage.
"?!?" Like he had looked into the eyes of Medusa, Neon was struck speechless. Little more than a note of surprised emptied his throat, and he found himself looking at the shiny knife with new purpose. He wasn't squeezing it so hard now.
"You... want me... seppuku?!?" Barely able to suffer a whole sentence, the idea of assisted suicide was something he never expected of Tsusaka, in spite of his ancestry. While he was recently aware that Tsusaka, while a vampire, was also the son of a demigod, further implications that he was the grandson of Inari left the King doused in a informative stupor. What were he to do??
In Tsusaka's leave, Neon hit his knees. Sliding the weapon back in his sheath, his eyes shook with misunderstanding. And just what did he mean by 'from the ashes'?? To be asked to assist in an honorable suicide just days after being let off by his now ex-girlfriend, Neon was a matzah ball of emotion.
"Did I hear him right??" Hyde stammered, coming up from behind Neon, as lost in the conversation as he. "After all we've done to keep him and his mercenaries alive, now suddenly he wants you to help him kill himself?" Hyde tried to put the pieces together in his head, but nothing came out right. Was he just not thinking of it the samurai-way? No! "Well, what're you gonna do? ... Neon?"
By the time Hyde asked, Neon was already on his way back to his room. The hallway had been cleared by the Moon Child himself, utilizing his alchemy, but nevertheless, "Neon! You better not be going back in there," Hyde followed after him, just in time to witness the Graffiti King getting ready to draw himself a new door. But wait...
Surprisingly stopped in his haze of emotion by the one person in the room he did not know (or did know??), the half-worn vagabond came to close calls with a black eared goldilocks before him, his old personality's atypical cluelessness showing through his head's dim-lit blue windows. She looked so familiar in his already pickled mind, but her name... it did evade! And god help him if he called her "Summer".