Den of the Watchers (MK)

GEAR

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#1
Time: Unknown
Location: The Endless Frontiers


"So... What do you like to do for fun?"

How long had their trek truly been?

All around the two machines - one white, one black - the aether pulsed and shook. Turning one's head may have elicited glimpses of worlds that once were, that perhaps would be - or, simple shades that were glimpses of other, incoherent possibilities. The tides of the immaterial realm carried them back towards their destination, their home world... Or, so they hoped. According to Gail, whose company was pleasant and inoffensive, it was simply a matter of "retracing one's steps", and he had spent the majority of the time instructing Derrick on the ways and means of traveling between worlds, of which the Astranagant was capable.

The long and short of it was: Don't.

He had explained, at length and in great detail, the horrors that now resided between what had once been safe islands of space. Hordes of ravenous DAMON locked in eternal battle with the formless, malevolent masses of the Lamalice, spilling into and across worlds, until none but I'sola seemed to remain. Indeed, they had even seen chunks of space that had been devoured by the Crawling Dark, nothing but pitiless expanses of black that crept into the void, forcing them to carefully navigate past.

Ahead of the Astrangant, the Asclepius led the way, its binders flared, twin gleaming tails of neon green flickering behind it, thankfully making for an easy follow - but how long it had been since they had departed Zivon's realm was uncertain to both. Gail seemed unconcerned, simply stating that such was the way of moving between worlds - causality, he had said, seemed to merely hold its breath, because otherwise it would have to start making all kinds of unpleasant, and often contradictory calculations on the part of the lifeforms in question. Whether it was a lingering benefit of the Ur-Humans, who had paved these very paths in the past, or simply part of the fabric of the universe... Was uncertain.

In any case, the great beyond stretched out before them as they roared through its gullet. Supposedly, they would be reaching their destination "soon"...

...If only that word was not so suspect, in this particular instance.
 

MKR

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Aug 19, 2018
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#2
As they had traveled Derrick had taken the time to reapply his lenses, his blue eyes once again hidden beneath the purple gaze. The journey had been nothing if not educational, the Astranagant not only was capable of travelling down these 'roads' but Gail also had told him why he should never do so.
Nevertheless this scenery seemed more in line with what the intruder on the moon wanted him to see.

Inside this space where nothing and everything collided it was... Hard, to keep track of time but that seemed part of the intent of this extra-planar method of travel, that said it made the word 'soon' less impactful than desired but complaining about how long it took to get to their destination was a trait Derrick hadn't had since his teens. As the Astranagant seemed to simply glide after the Asclepius, its green wings carrying its flight, Gail asked his question. But Derrick was not truly surprised, as Gail did seem the kind to make small talk when able to. And if it filled the time, sure.

"For fun? Well travelling for one. Though more local than this, unlike some of my peers I took the time to actually watch the moon from Earth's surface." It had helped bring things into perspective for him, let alone seeing the real sights instead of simulated versions visible to anyone willing to step into a museum on Luna.

"Aside from that, there's work. If I hadn't enjoyed what I did I wouldn't have gotten as good at it as I am." Though anyone who looked into Derrick's history would know, aside from his work acquaintances and some people he had met during his travels his social life left many things to be desired, living away from most people to work and only reappearing with a new creation. Or in the most recent case, pilot 'his' creation.

"And you?" He tossed the question back at his guide. It only seemed polite, a more sincere politeness than the Grand Arbiter had gotten at least.
 

GEAR

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#3
"A fellow traveler, I see!" Laughed Gail, the Asclepius turning its head back towards its unlikely companion. Gail, at the very least, made for good company - there was something about his countenance that put one at ease, the simplicity of his words, perhaps, or his general demeanor of a somewhat aloof, yet friendly drifter. Despite what secrets he seemed to keep, nothing whatsoever about him radiated any kind of malevolence - unlike Zivon, whose glowing eyes would likely revisit those who had the misfortune to see them in their nightmares for years to come.

"Camping is something I love. Really, just being out in the world, among nature... It's-"

Suddenly, there was a bright light, causing Gail to trail off as something shot past the two at incredible speeds. It was like a bolt of lightning, blasting through time and space, rocketing forth on an unimaginable jet of power - yet, it seemed to mean them no harm, simply careening away into the distance.

"Huh."

Gail, at a loss for words, turned his head once more back to Derrick, questioningly - but before he had a chance to ask whatever was on his mind, the space around them began to twist, contorting in on itself, causing him to give a short gasp before disappearing from Derrick's view.

The seconds ticked by, as the Astranagant lay in nothing but blackness. Slowly, yet surely, however, reality knitted itself back together about him.​

Yet... It was no world that he would have been familiar with.

1557601581286.png

Around the Astranagant, fading into view... were alien stars, arranged in constellations and arrays that defied belief, forming linked, tattered clusters of lights in the distance. Strange, crystalline structures of all shapes, sizes, and colors, hung suspended at strange vectors, as far as the eye could see... yet the reflections that danced in their surfaces, cast from the glare of a shimmering, flickering sun, were anything but ordinary, dispersing across their forms as even the very light itself seemed to bend according to some strange, unknown laws.

Before him, arranged in a great circle, were 12 large stones, formed of a dark mineral which seemed to refract and absorb colors at random, equidistant from one another, only further adding to the strange, almost abstract nature of the world he now found himself in. What was this place? Had they been ejected somehow from the slipstream?

"...They changed it."

...The only comfort, at least, was that the Asclepius was here with him, Gail's voice piping up as he too looked back and forth, speaking quietly. Did he know what this phenomenon was?
 
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MKR

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#4
Both of them enjoyed travel, a happy coincidence as it would give them a topic to discuss during-

Instinctively Derrick raised his arm in front of his eyes as the lightning bolt passed by, the simple pleasure of discussion broken asunder by the interruption. Before he would be able to ask what just happened, the road they had traveled disappeared in front of him.
It took seconds for him, but who knew how long it really took. The only comfort being the alien confines of his cockpit before everything reassembled in front of him, differently than before however.

The dim red lines of the Astranagant and the bright green wings did little to brighten the area, the massive monstrous machine looking at the constellations. In his head Derrick attempting to recognize any pattern or set visible from the Earthsphere.
His focus however would be aimed at the unusual crystal structures, 12 almost pitch black items. The closest he could come to explaining them in his mind would be the equivalent of black holes, sucking in even light itself.

Gail's voice came over his comms, confirming his traveling guide had gained the same fate as he. Trapped in this unusual place.
However, the usually soothing man said something rather unnerving.
Derrick slowly lowered his arm back to the controls, the Astranagant remaining motionless as the scientist spoke up at last.
"They changed it?" He asked.

"What was changed by whom and why do you know?" He asked the man in order of importance. "And how do we get back now."
For all its flaws, Derrick was beginning to perhaps prefer the rougher method of travel he had endured to get to Zivon's realm. The swiftness with which it had happened, and lack of dimensional lightning, made it somewhat preferred despite the rough landing.
 

GEAR

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#5
"I've heard about things like this, but never experienced it." Explained Gail, as he tapped away at his own keyboard, without taking his eyes off the monitor.

All around them, was a vague sense of... Unease. A kind of slow, cosmic breathing, inhaling, and exhaling, that weighed upon the Psychodriver's mind. It was... strangely similar to what Gail had felt earlier with the Astranagant - the presence of something deep, and ancient. Yet... It seemed for the moment, to be subtle, at best, as if they were, for the moment, only being watched, by something dwelling just out of sight.

"The pathways between worlds were utilized by the Ur-Humans... But they weren't the ones who invented them - according to Zivon, at least." Continued the young man, scowling as the star maps, unsurprisingly turned up blank. They weren't anywhere in the Solar System, at the very least - that much he could say for sure.

"If I had to guess, this would be like-"

"-A quarantine? Hahahahaha!"

Gail's eyebrows raised, as a voice called out, cackling over the radio.

Seated atop on of the stone circles, not far from the two, a coiled, draconic form rested, segmented tail flicking back and forth in the alien light. In its hand, it clutched a crimson, curved sword with a ruby-hued blade, tip pressed against the ground as a gnarled, root-like hand came up to circumnavigate a set of warped facial armor that had the visual consistency of autumn leaves, surrounded about a snarling, demonic visage. Its silhouette, equal parts insect and dragon, was completed by a pair of wings that sprouted from its back, presently flattened, reducing its profile somewhat - yet by no means making it any less menacing to behold.

zelvoid.jpg

"No. This space is more akin to... a prison."​

"A Zelvoid...?!" Gasped Gail, arguably the first genuine surprise that had emitted from his person, at least in Derrick's presence.
 

MKR

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#6

Derrick could feel the pressure exuded by merely being here, the unease went through him like air in his lungs. It was the benefit and detriment of being a psychodriver. The ability to feel a situation in and of itself was a powerful tool, but the impact of it was not a pleasant feeling. Unless one were to be surrounded by kittens, puppies and everything else that raised the mood in any room.
It was one of the reasons he preferred to be away from the people for his private life.

But the unease here triumphed over any he had felt before, more powerful than any aura a jeering audience could give off. As if something best described as beyond him loomed over his shoulder. Derrick shaking the feeling off as Gail explained the predicament they were in.

Only to be interrupted by a third voice, seemingly mocking them over the radio. Explaining their situation in a most rude manner.
The unease in him increased, though not his own. A feeling like what he had felt towards the DAMON riding monster on the moon pent up in him, a recognition that this 'Zelvoid' did not belong here. Though less so than the aforementioned monster. One that even caught Gail by surprise.

Derrick however, wasn't going to let some beat up schmuck get a reaction out of him merely for having a fancy ride. At this point he was getting used to, and tired of, all this shit happening to him today.
The ZONE exploding, swathes of DAMON, that weird Mech, getting kicked across dimensions, meeting with Zivon and the revelations within it and now this. Frankly he just wanted to go home, sleep, and take it all in. But no, he couldn't catch a break and would have to play time cop for the most assholish incarnation of Father Time imaginable.

"So what does that make you? The inmate?" He scoffed. At least communication was possible in this god knows where place with god knows who.
"Or are you intended to be the warden?" Derrick stated, the Astranagant raising its gaze upwards to stare at the draconic entity. Its crystalline frame reflecting the lights of the foreign stars of its black form.

Inside the cockpit Derrick narrowed his gaze at the third entity in the room. The Black Angel hovering its hand over the Z.O. Blade should any hostile intent be shown.
"Its at least obvious you don't exactly belong, now do you."
 

GEAR

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#7
The Zelvoid reached up, tapping the side of its head slowly with its free hand as it glanced between the two.

"Though the appearance doesn't quite match..." Said the pilot airily, before a finger was slowly lowered in Derrick's direction;

"That must be... Astranagant." He continued. The finger slid sideways to Gail's machine;

"And, the white one-"

"Asclepius."

Gail's voice called out, interrupting the man. His tone was firm, and resolute - somehow, no less genteel, but now it carried a certain unyielding quality to it, as the serpentine mobile weapon drew itself up to its full height.

"Oh?"

"Whatever else you might be thinking? You're mistaken."

The Zelvoid's pilot gave a throaty chuckle, the sound of amused clapping filling the air over the communications link. Gail, for his part seemed to be taking the Zelvoid's appearance seriously - but kept his words to himself, otherwise, his own thoughts an enigma. Perhaps to his relief, the Zelvoid moved on from the subject, jabbing a finger at the space above them, lazily.

"This realm... is where the architects of life slumber, hidden from unworthy eyes. They are no friend to you, nor to I."
 

MKR

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#8
His questions gone unanswered Derrick crossed his arms in the Astranagant's cockpit. The Astranagant had been recognized. Which, yes, on its own was not entirely unusual. Everglory had effectively used it as a deterrent, dubbing it the strongest unit ever created much to his pleasure and dismay alike. But to hear the Zelvoid's pilot call it so, and not fully recognizing the appearance of it was unsettling, or rather it was wrong and left the lunarian pondering how one could deem the Astranagant's appearance as wrong.

With the man's assessment of Gail's unit coming and being interrupted by the man himself the side of Gail that stared down Zivon came more to the fore from Derrick's point of view, a side that reminded him that despite the man's behavior and attitude there was something off. As to not only call out the name for him but also deny him even the thought of anything else being the unit was most unusual.

The Lunarian returned his attention to the Zelvoid as its pilot clapped, Derrick paid attention to the warning within his words. Whoever was in this place did not have their best interest in mind as the scientist looked up at the stars he pondered the identity of these architects. Though the way he acted made the Zelvoid being this place's warden an unlikely scenario.

"So, a simple question for you then. Is this a prison for them, or for us?" he paused a beat, looking at the structure and the stars once again. The Zelvoid's pilot seemed to know a lot about their location, which lend itself credence to the Zelvoid being the warden in return. Simply put, a most unusual predicament.

"And if it is purely ours, how do we break out without waking these architects."
 

GEAR

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#9
The Zelvoid cocked its head in the direction of the Astranagant as it spoke. The pilot seemed to be in the mood to humor them for a little while longer, and he spoke once more:

"Perhaps the watchers reside here of their own free will, unconcerned with the outside world... Or the shackles imposed on them are indeed, leaden, and firm." It seemed to give a flippant shrug, as though amused at Derricks demanding of answers, even as the one it gave seemed wholly unsatisfactory;

"It makes no difference."

"So we're trapped, then." Said Gail thoughtfully, reaching up in the cockpit to push the hair from his eyes. He had lowered his gaze, contemplating their situation, as if something were on his mind-

Before he could continue speaking, however, a bout of raucous laughter erupted from the Zelvoid, whose form shook with mirth. The Asclepius pilot waited patiently, before asking, quietly:

"Something funny?"

"You say we."

"And?"

"But, I..."

The Zelvoid reached up, and placed a hand on its chest. A glow of emerald green pulsed out into the surroundings as it rose, grasping the sword in its left hand as it did so. Beside Derrick, the Asclepius gave a simular pulse of power, albeit one more muted than the energy now spilling out of the Zelvoid, causing Gail to reflexively bring a hand to his own chest in surprise.

"Am under no such restriction!"
 

MKR

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#10
The scientific side of Derrick wanted, cleared, well defined answers. At the very least Gragios had remained somewhat understandable in contrast to the events of the past day. But frankly, at this point he was getting used to inconclusive, vague, unclear or otherwise unsatisfying answers to basic questions.
All because one day he visited a Russian colleague and bought into a sales pitch.

The Lunarian simply sighed at the explanation, at least somewhat grateful there at least was a response this time even if it didn't matter. However he couldn't help but chuckle slightly at the mention of free will. That thing Zivon claimed humanity squandered, the great treasure and eternal burden of choice. If these things were uncaring about the choice being theirs or not perhaps their existence was closer to that man rather than himself.
What came after that however, left him a lot less grateful as it became clear the Zelvoid was neither warden nor inmate, effective having landed on the 'just visiting' of inter-dimensional jail and that caused Derrick to sit up right in his seat as the implication was rather dire.

"So we would be doomed to forever remain here while you just leave?" He replied before noticing the Asclepius had adopted the same, but faded, glow on it. "Wha-" he paused, contemplating if any question he asked Gail or the third man present would ever give an answer even bordering on satisfying before simply sighing and looking over the Asclepius.

"Anything either of you care to explain about this?" He looked over the situation unfurling, both the Zelvoid and Gail seemingly gathering power as there at long last seemed to be something the Astranagant could not pull off.
"Because I feel that at most one of you expected that to happen."
 

GEAR

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#11
"He's saying he's here to kill us, Derrick." Said Gale tersely in response to the Lunarian's understandable confusion, as the glow in the Asclepius resided - even as it remained flared across the Zelvoid, which was already spreading its wings in preparation.

"That's why he hasn't left. He planned this!"

"CORRECT!"

With a blast of emerald-infused flame, the Zelvoid cannonballed off its perch, coming directly at the two of them. One arm was thrust forward, a magic circle pulsing into being before its fingertips as the pilot cried out:

"Fly, Familiars!"

From its fingertips, a series of dark, almost avian looking projections, wreathed in burning plasma, shot forward, six in total. They split apart into two groups of three - and descended on the two of them, razor-sharp wings slashing and tearing at the Astranagant's armor, seeking weak spots - or perhaps, just to hold him still until the Zelvoid could close to its preferred range.

Gail, for his part, kicked the Asclepius into high gear, sending the white machine up and away as the familiars chased after it. Its arms and legs lashed out swiftly, batting away any of the apparitions that came close with its bladed protrusions - yet at the same time, it was effective enough to keep him occupied, as the Zelvoid closed in on Astranagant, brandishing its blade hungrily.
 

MKR

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#12
"Fine. If he wants to die that badly." Derrick simply remarked. The Z.O. Blade immediately being pulled out and brought to the ready. Though by all means out of his element the inherent feeling bestowed upon him by the Astranagant would never let him fully get at ease around the Zelvoid or things like it, that small edge, the anticipation of horrible things and almost built in mistrust meant that even not having fully expected the Zelvoid having been here to kill both of them it nevertheless let that lingering feeling remain.

"Go! Gun Familiars!" the Lunarian called out as the Astranagant's two companions took flight, the Astranagant pointed its unlit blade forward, directing the pair to deal with the three familiars sent after it.
Because if the Zelvoid wished to approach, he would not find the Astranagant distracted. No, instead he would have to make his way through the first layer of Derrick's defenses. The familiars sent after him were currently finding themselves met with the monster's TK field, which while not wholly mitigating their assault prevented them from landing any good hits in their time so far.
The already lit wings of the Black Angel ominously spread, green T-Link feathers darting forwards aiming to implant themselves within the Zelvoid and detonate accordingly. Though he would've liked the familiars to have added to the layers of projectiles at his defense, they were busy shooting down the familiars that harried the outer armor of the Astranagant.

The red lines on the Astranagant loomed ominously as the field went in effect, the unit remaining mostly still as it awaited the arrival of the Zelvoid. One eye remaining on the battle between familiars. If his would be murderer wanted him still so be it, he would play along. But one thing was sure, this was no DAMON commander so tearing holes into other realities should not be his concern currently.

While Derrick believed this all to be generally a bad plan, as the man's reason to even fight them at this point instead of leaving them in this void seemed next to none he did wonder how he even arranged for them to get here as their travel, all things considered, had not been planned.
 

GEAR

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#13
Shocks of dark energy crackled across the surface of the TK Field as the Zelvoid's familiars slashed against it - the fire from the Gun Familiars, large and bulky as they were, failed to find much purchase against their smaller, and considerably faster forms - no, they didn't seem to be true, physical remotes... More like projections of some kind. At the very least, they seemed to be made using a different kind of technology than the Astranagant itself... But what?

The twin Folding Smashers of the Asclepius snaked out, serpentine structures twisting, as if tasting the air - before unleashing their own precision blasts in the direction of the Zelvoid-

"Hahaha! This is AMAZING!"

Yet the malevolent Masouki barely even changed corse. Shards from the T-Link Feathers buried themselves into its body, detonating across its frame, as Gail's own blasts tore into it - yet it burst from the resulting smoke, terrible wounds gouged into its frame, yet seemingly no less agile as a result, its grinning face now scarred and pitted as its eyes flashed wickedly.

The Zelvoid dove out and over, closing the gap between itself and the Astranagant with almost preternatural speed. The crimson blade lashed out as it dove, aiming to slice into the machine's wrist, fracturing it at the weakest point - despite the difference in size, and the sheer pressure that the Astranagant exuded, his foe attacked with almost suicidal overconfidence, and little thought in regards to self preservation. The strokes themselves were well targeted, but... His movements appeared almost amateurish, as though he were not quite familiar with the weapon he held.
 
Aug 19, 2018
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#14
The Z.O. Sword lit up as Zelvoid approached, its pilot's boldness coming to some surprise but then again he had the guts to want to try and kill him. The green light of the Z.O. Sword cascaded off of the Astranagant's arm as Derrick eyed the man's movements, he seemed every bit the amateur he was in a regular mech. But the Black Angel forced the knowledge of its use in his brain.
And as such, the Astranagant's hand retracted throwing the blade to its free hand as the Zelvoid's sword came down on it. Avoiding a cut through the wrists but instead lopping off one of the five claw like fingers on the hand of of the monster. The crystalline segment floating loosely in front of where it had been attached.

Inside the cockpit Derrick noted that despite his movements the Zelvoid's strength was remarkable, but the directness and amateurishness of his actions was to be exploited. The Lunarian couldn't help but smile despite the predicament, seemingly not feeling threatened by the smaller foe. In fact, after today he rather liked having a punching bag available. The scientist's confidence matching or beating that of the Zelvoid's pilot.
"If you truly wish to die that badly as to call it 'amazing'. Very well, I shall assist your intricate suicide." His tone was polite, but the intent seeped within the words. Currently he would like nothing more than to use the Zelvoid as a punching bag and so he would.

With the left hand, now equipped with the Z.O. Sword, the Astranagant cut down. Aiming to cave in the Zelvoid's left shoulder with its slice, but that was not all, for one thing was most clear. There were no Lunarian knights present, no officials who could judge the scientist for his actions and Derrick as such would not play fair.
Because of that, the Black Angel's free arm, now down one finger immediately jabbed forward, palm open and aiming to grab the Zelvoid's head, but otherwise willing to accept anything it got its hands on and if it did so the Lunarian mech would begin crushing whatever it held, not fully, but enough to deeply embed its four remaining claws for now. Though the attentive observer would notice that where that fifth finger previously was cut off smoothly, small shards of crystal already began to jut out.

The Gun Familiars seemed to follow Derrick's line of thought, their ineffectiveness in dealing with their smaller foes noted they instead moved to both sides of their parent unit and began firing behind the Zelvoid, intending to cut off a path of retreat or at least not make doing so free. All in all making the surroundings of the Guardian of Causality a veritable death trap.
 

GEAR

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#15
"I'm grateful to have such a charitable adversary!"

The Gun Familiars chewed holes in the Zelvoid as it closed in, further mottling its appearance - Derrick's sword came down, and the foe, either through luck, or through skill, managed to deflect it with a wild swing of their own blade, the Zelvoid bending and leaning in every which direction as it did, as if every blow carried the full weight of their machine. Yet, as Derrick reached out, the Astranagant's fingers only managed to tear free a chunk of the Zelvoid's shoulder armor, as it was already bolting away, circling about to his right.

Though unskilled, the Zelvoid did have one major advantage over the monstrous Astrangant: Speed.

The crimson blade licked out - once, twice, thrice, slashing into the waist, the chest, the shoulder of the Astranagant, its form nothing but a bloody blur as the machine danced about with a howl of laughter, as if Derrick were held in an oversized blender. It was close, now - so close that there was barely any room to breathe, and this, it seemed, was exactly where it wanted to be, the pilot jeering at Derrick:

"Zivon's toy is more durable than-"

Yet, his sneer was interrupted as a white, armored fist struck the face of the Zelvoid, causing it to tumble away, verniers fluttering, to slam into the surface of one of the stone circle's components. The Asclepius shook its hand almost absent-mindedly, floating down to hover just above the Astranagant's shoulder as the red-masked machine turned towards him.

"Are you alright?" Asked Gail, though his voice seemed to betray less anxiety than before. Perhaps, after seeing the capabilities of the Zelvoid, he was simply feeling more confident than before?
 
Aug 19, 2018
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#16
Inside the cockpit Derrick grit his teeth, trying to get a lock on the Zelvoid. The strikes themselves while damaging did nothing more than cut into the exterior frame and annoy the TK Field. And the pilot, as the quicker machine continued to elude his grasp. This is why the assistance from the Asclepius was most appreciated, getting some distance once more between himself and their foe.
As the scrap of the shoulder armor was thrown away the fifth finger that had previously been lost had already reformed. Its form seeming as if it had never once left the Astranagant's hand. The massive frame of the Astranagant turned to look at its foe after Gail had knocked it away, getting a moment to realize the Zelvoid had acknowledged Zivon and his relation to the Astranagant.

"Yeah." Derrick answered, putting the Z.O. Sword back in the right hand. The pilot narrowed his eyes at the Zelvoid "So far all he has succeeded in is being annoying."


The two Gun familiars hovered around the Astranagant's shoulders, which raised its left hand forwards, almost reaching out to the far off enemy.
"And if you can buy me a moment, that annoyance will be gone." With that, light seemed to almost be absorbed into the Astranagant's hand, collecting into a large sphere. The surroundings got darker as it seemed even the wings and red lights of the black angel itself grew dimmer.

Perhaps their foe or Gail would be able to tell, but Derrick planned to unleash the Axion cannon upon the Zelvoid. Turn its speed into its downfall with the sheer gravitational force of a black hole. The Zelvoid hadn't showcased enough speed to escape that but also it had not shown itself as an important enough foe to erase. No, mere death by being crushed would suffice for him.

The Gun Familiars now moved in front of the Astranagant, intending to guard it as it prepared its attack. Their shots would be aimed at the Zelvoid's shoulders and wings, their goal being to destabilize its flight and hamper its approach. Having gathered energy the Astranagant raised its arm, and light coalesced in all directions, taking its chance to escape the grasp of the Black angel before being stuck there for eternity.
 

GEAR

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#17
As energy build up in the Astranagant's arm, Gail watched the Zelvoid below as it attempted to rise, sparks shooting from its body as it did so. Something, he knew, wasn't right. This whole situation reeked of a trap. That man had challenged them, but the gap in performance was so large as to be absurd - yet, he had recklessly charged them, laughing all the while.

Almost as if he wasn't planning on winning.

It was only a moment later, when the reality of their positioning struck him, that he had the presence of mind to cry out:

"Wait-!"

But it was too late.

The Axion Cannon, yet another of the fearsome weapons installed on the Astranagant composed of nothing less than dark matter itself, smashed into the surface of the Stone Circle below, causing its surface to fracture, and buckle. From its heart, a micro-singularity pulsed out, drawing the entirity of the structure into its black coils, sparing nothing from the murderous grasp of the event horizon. The Zelvoid's form contorted... withered... and then was crushed, forced into the center of the mass, and then violently compacted as it was ripped through the center of the mass.

In seconds, it was over. A solid half of the structure's constituent parts were now gone, leaving only a scattered array of the dark stones, and no trace whatsoever of their foe.

...

In the darkness about the two, something... stirred.

To the young Psychodriver, there would have been a sharp, sudden stab - as if an ice pick were driven without any warning into his forehead, as the vague pressure he had been feeling before now bloomed. It was feeling unlike anything else he had experienced before... Not quite hatred, but... as if some kind of psychic mass had affixed him with one lazy eye, giving him the benefit of its entire attention.

"Derrick?"

Gail's voice came over the communications link, as the Asclepius raised a hand, pointing at something. In the distance, there was a sudden, dull light. A single drop of red, like a paper lantern hanging in the dark, or the defiant last gleam of a fading, dying star. As they watched, another, similar light flickered into life not far from it, joining its lonely existence.

Then two.

Then three.

All around the two of them, more and more of the little lights blinked into being, multiplying at an astonishing pace, like the opening of a hundred crimson eyes. There were... forms that were taking shape, just outside their field of vision, indistinct, yet wholly alien in nature, as if they were unhurriedly assembling themselves, roused from an ancient, deathless slumber, a thick mist now beginning to curl out from about them, rolling across the cosmos like a wicked blanket. The Asclepius, perhaps unconsciously, moved to press its back against the Astranagant's own, looking left and right as on all sides, the lights continued to multiply.
 
Aug 19, 2018
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#18
The Axion Cannon about to shoot off, Derrick raised an eyebrow at Gail's exclamation. It was too late to wait, trying to control the singularity as it was would kill them instead of the Zelvoid, so with no time to react nor plans to let the Zelvoid survive the dark void shot forwards. Despite his companion's warning he was pleased with the results, their foe well and truly gone it now allowed them to find their own way back. Surely this prison, if it had a way in, would have a way out. All they needed was some time without any disturbances and it should be done in a heartbeat.

And then he gasped, holding his hand against the side of his head as a sudden, sharp, pain bored into it, as if someone had taken an icicle and jabbed it through his head right into his brain. The pressure he had felt all this time tumbling on him at once the feeling of an eye the size of a moon staring at him, as if he were the main actor on a stage play of cosmic proportions. With a lump in his throat he answered Gail's calling of his name.

"Yes?" The Black Angel guiding its vision to where the Asclepius pointed, a new light adorned the horizon though too close to be a star. It was more akin to a Will'o'wisp from legend if Derrick had to guess. And then it seemingly multiplied and the scientist worried his guess had not been that far off of the truth, as weirder things had happened these past years.

And before they knew it, they were surrounded. Or perhaps they always had been. It would seem that the Architects of Life had awakened. As the mist seemed to awake with them the Asclepius pushed itself into the Astranagant's back. The Black Angel concluding its regeneration of the Zelvoid's attacks as it did once more looking pristine.

"What do we do now?" Derrick simply asked, finally removing the hand from his head as the pain subsided. So fair Gail had seemed knowledgeable on all manner of things he wasn't supposed to know, let alone the fact he recognized the circle. Even the source of his instinctual info seemed to be unsure on what to think of these beings. So the Lunarian grasped the controls, looking over the hordes of monsters in the distance and called the two Gun Familiars to his side once more.
 

GEAR

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Jun 15, 2018
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#19
"Beautiful! Just beautiful! I couldn't have planned this any better myself!"​

A fragment of the Zelvoid's curved sword that had escaped the grasp of the singularity gave en errant twitch from where it was embedded in one of the dark stones. A strange vibration fluctuated through its frame - and then it leapt, unbidden through the vacuum, traveling along the exact path which it had came, to vanish into a slowly growing mass of twisted metal, situated on the exact point where the Axion Cannon had struck. A pair of three-clawed legs thrust out from the mass, followed by a pair of clawed hands, long, draconic wings, and eventually - a grinning, needle-mouthed head, grasping a curved blade.

Resurrection...? No, it's something else. Gail's thoughts raced as he beheld, to his shock, the Zelvoid's violent rebirth - it was almost as if, he thought, its destruction had been forcibly rewound, reverted back to a certain, fixed spot in the Records. Something tugged at his memory - something deeply unpleasant, and he forced himself to ignore the possibility for the moment, as best as he could.

"That looked like it hurt." He said casually, Asclepius gesturing roughly in the Zelvoid's direction as it did so.

"Pain, too... Is a kind of joy."

"So you're going to leave us to die, is that it?"

The Zelvoid's pilot gave a dry chuckle.

"Your fate is not for me to share, friends... But before I depart, know this:"

The Zelvoid folded its arms, sheathing its weapon across its hip, eyes gleaming as it spoke:

"I am Ze'ev Yarad, Sphere Reactor of the Dreaming Twin Fishes. Born of dust and the down of the white crow, thrall of the crimson star."​

At long last, the communications line, which had been kept closed, opened at the behest of the pilot, showing them the one within. A young man of ashen-grey complexion, his clothes tattered and worn, gaunt-faced and fierce-eyed, stared back at them, his defiant posture matching that of the machine outside. His hair was wiry and wild, and it seemed almost as if all color had been pressed from his being - but not life. At his mention of the Sphere, Gail gave a short, sharp intake of breath, his own eyes widening with surprise, before Ze'ev continued:

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"You, who seek to preserve this order, this world... are my adversaries."​
 
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Aug 19, 2018
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#20
Upon hearing that voice again Derrick simply grit his teeth once more. To himself he thought what needed to be done to get someone to actually die. The Astranagant's features did not reveal the anger of its pilot, the Black Angel simply observed the reconstruction of the Zelvoid with those same cold features.
But not long after it returned to observe the entities surrounding the three of them.

The Lunarian silently listened to the two talk, once more that unpleasant feeling nagged on him now that the Zelvoid was whole once more. Oh how he wanted to vent his anger and annoyance on this foe but he had better self control than that. No, he simply acknowledged that even if he did that the Zelvoid would simply leave this space.

And now the man himself appeared on his display, a man that looked like the printer had run out of enough colors for his features. As Ze'ev listed his peculiar titles and odd descriptions which Derrick expected were half self proclaimed the man dubbed them his adversaries, as if that hadn't been clear by the attack he made earlier. More grating to the scientist however, he called them both Friends and Adversaries in the span of roughly four seconds. Though it was likely far from a serious remark he was very selective with the former for a reason, doubly so now after one 'friend' had already bestowed upon him the worst full time job in the universe.

"Ze'ev." He finally spoke up, calling out the name to add it to his memory. "You grate on me for a multitude of reasons, least of all that the urge to kill you is forcefully bestowed on me." Derrick paused for a moment, looking at the man on his display. "I don't know what you're planning. I frankly don't care, you'll have to go through me if you want to accomplish it however."

"You know this machine, you know who forced it on me. Then you should also know how well and truly dead you are the next time we meet. I don't care if it takes one hundred, or one thousand destructions and reconstructions of your machine." Derrick simply shook his head afterwards. "So I'll offer you one word of advice: 'Run'."