Coffee Shop Banter

His latte was getting cold.

"Heeeey, come on, now, Scottie, stop being such a worthless dick and do something worth your scrap," a snide voice said through the din of the Dentech Java's hustle and bustle. Mentally blocking out the coffee shop's commotion, Markus simply slumped on the table, face down in front of his charging laptop. Beside it, his PET was plugged in, housing two of the most annoying and problematic Navigators known to Markuskind. One of his hands was running through his hair, pressing down on his scalp and temples, while the other idly grasped his still-untouched large latte.

"Mmmmmrrrrgh," groaned Markus, as he looked up at the screen. Half of the 14-inch display showed some half-assed paper he had finished typing out about an hour ago, and the other half showed the PET homepage display of a grinning cat, her arms crossed as her tail swished about behind her. The exhausted second-year student exhaled in exasperation, and abruptly took the cup to his lips, downing a little more than half of the stimulant in a heartbeat. Markus didn't bother to wipe off a small trail that was going past his chin.

Okay, now he could function. Somewhat. He guessed that if he could feel the cold table, he could probably speak a few coherent sentences.

"So, you back to forever alone land yet?" teased Raki, raising an eyebrow as she projected a throwing knife in her left hand, deftly throwing it up in the air and catching it absently. Markus looked at Raki with a haggard expression, and frowned with the least amount of effort required to express his discontent. "Just... shut up for a second, will you, Raki..." he mumbled rather incoherently.

"Eh? What was that? Speak up, Scottie, I can't hear your squeaking," said Raki, perking her ears as she flitted them about. Then, suddenly, she received an unexpected pat on the shoulder. "Sis, that's eno-- Eeeek!" the voice implored, before squealing at something. Raki had turned about, unconsciously flinging her knife towards the person behind her as well. "Oh. Hey, close call, Riki," said Raki, addressing her sister, who was currently gulping nervously and backing up a fair bit. Riki's tail was hidden by her coat, but one could observe that her back side was poking up a little and shivering a fair deal.

"S-Sis... don't do that," whined Riki, a little whimper coming out of her as she relaxed slightly from the sudden attack.
The sheer size of the university was overwhelming for the curious girl, who was trying to inquire about enrollment. Mira had come all the way from Sharo, staying with a relative in the city as she tried to examine her top choice for her future education in the following year. She soon found out there was much more to the university than just what she had read about. There was a problem, once she had arrived however. Between her curiosity and attention span, Mira has wandered far off course from where she had intended.

[This place is just so amazing~ I love it heheheh. There's just so much to do! I can't wait to enroll here, i'll never be bored~] Mira chimed, gleefully exploring the school. Mira, I don't think you're doing this correctly. A more proper examination would start with gathering intel. The voice of reason from Mira's PET quickly asserted itself, as Nyan was worried about the girls progress. You don't just wander blindly into enemy territory. You find out what they have, calmly and quietly survey the target. Once you have everything you need, then you strike! Mira paid no heed to her navi's offer of tactical advice, of course. She was still much to excited about the adventure of a new location to play around in.

[Oh come on Nyan~ we need to have fun! Where's your feline curiosity? Shed the uniform and let out your inner animal, heheh~ Stop being so strict, silly.] Nyan just pulled her hood over her face, letting out a muffled groan. I am not a cat! you're the one who made me like this! I am an ex-military officer! I demand respe-

[oh! whats going on there? that man looks absolutely terrible. Is he sick?] Mira cut her navi's rant short as she locked on to a man sitting down in the university coffee shop. With a girl as hyper as Mira, the thought of exhaustion had never occurred to her. Nor had she ever really been into a coffee shop. Those who knew her feared the day the girl got a hold of a massive caffeine fix, and thus banded together to keep such a thing from ever occurring. Pulling her cat-eared hood over her head, with a cleaver grin as she swooped in closer.

[Hey mister! What's wrong?!] Mira said, sneaking up on the poor man, wrapping her arms around his neck gently from behind with a giggle. [Are you ok? You don't look ok. You look awful actually. Why do you look so poor? Are you ill? Do you have a tummy ache? Do you want some asprin? I don't have any, but you should think about it! Hi I'm Mira~] A flurry of words assaulted her unsuspecting prey, with a smile all the while.

God damn it Mira, what have i told you about pouncing people! YOU ARE NOT A CAT! Why are you such a child... why do i have to put up with this, urgh... The navi changed from an initial tone of anger to sulking pulling her hood over her face once more in frustration, knowing she had no control over her operators actions. Fine, just do what you want. Even if this isn't tactically sound.
"Yeah, Raki, you should really be careful with those kn—" started Markus with a lethargic tone, when he suddenly felt something very, very wrong. Some hands were reaching around his neck, wrapping around them ever so slowly. Who was this? Why were they encircling his neck so slowly, so gently? A dozen or so thoughts flew through his head, trying to figure out the reason, each worse than the last. Fuck, fuck, keep calm, keep calm, he repeated to himself over and over in his head, with his face as white as snow and his expression as dreadful as a dead man's.

Meanwhile, Raki was giggling mercilessly at her cowering sister, projecting another knife in her hand and throwing it about playfully. "It's too fun, though, watching your face go 'Eeee!' like that," teased Raki, mimicking her sister's squealing voice. "Right, Markie?" Turning to look at their operator, Raki's amused expression quickly turned confused. "...Eh?" she blurted out, seeing the abrupt introduction of another person other than Markus Scott.

Due to their operator's... sensibilities, neither Raki nor Riki have ever really remembered Markus being in contact with another person out of free will. Even more so, Raki noticed something even stranger; the unknown pouncer seemed to be... a female?! Wow, that's unexpected, she thought, a canine-flashing grin spreading across her face. She'd have fun with this, most definitely.

"Ohhhh~ Scottieeee, I never knew you had a girl..." said Raki, making sure to draw out the last word in a particularly twisted manner.

"Girl?!" Riki spat out, her squeak suddenly amplified. She clutched her coat in surprise, turning slightly red at her outburst.

Girl?! By then, Markus' thought process was completely liquified, melting into a mess of emotions and reactions. Being kind of a shut-in, he naturally had zero meaningful experiences concerning the other side of the world. Struggling to keep himself together in the ocean of brain muck, he managed to gather enough composure to give a slightly coherent response.

"Y-Yes, I-I-I'm fine. M-Mira, was it?" stuttered Markus, with that really being the best he could do without collapsing into a useless pile of meat.
[hmmm? Are you sure?] Mira was a bit puzzled by the statement. While he said he was fine, something still seemed to be bothering her. Of course the idea it was her, was far from her thoughts. [You don't sound like you're fine though. Are you sure?] She released her grip, standing straight as her hands clasped each other behind her back. She pondered for a moment, contemplating what could be causing the poor man to act like this, but nothing immediately came to mind. [Maybe you have a fever? You do seem pretty pale...] The girl frowned a bit, not knowing what to do. She felt kind of bad for the guy, even though she had no idea who he was. There was just something about him that she couldn't help but worry for his health.

Mira, clearly you're just bothering him. Anyone would be thrown off by someone surprising them. Her navi chimed in, getting an idea of what was wrong. Especially when it's you. I suggest a tactical retreat, and returning to your original mission. The sound advice was of course ignored as Mira shook her head in disbelief.

[Nuh-uh. He looked terrible even before i showed up, so there! You need to let out your playful side and loosen up, Nyan.] The navi just hid under her hood once more, knowing it was a pointless argument. Of course before she even had time to reply, Mira was already on the move again.

The young girl had already made her way to the other side of the table, though instead of taking a seat, she opted to lean across it. Her emerald green eyes peered out from the black and blond strands which hung over her face, as she inched closer to markus to get a better view. [Are you sure you're doing ok?] Her head tilting slightly as she waited for a response, all the while forgetting that the tank top beneath her unzipped hoodie wasn't the most covering of clothes.

Mira, stop pestering the poor thing. If you keep this up, you might scare him off. Nyan remarked, though she wondered why she even bothered. The chances of Mira actually listening to someone were slim to none.
Markus felt the heaviest weight off his shoulders as Mira's hands went off her, and he fell limp onto the table in front of him. Okay, that was some very unexpected social interaction. Did he know this "Mira" person from somewhere? As far as he knew, he never met any girls on campus, making some effort to avoid contact with any of them. As far as he knew, girls he could identify with only existed on the fictional universe of his computer. Three dimensions was just one too many.

"Glad that's over and done with," he mumbled quietly to himself as he rested his head on the table. Thinking of what to do next, one of his Navis chimed in with a tone of concern. "Mark, are you okay...?" said Riki, her image on the laptop screen crouching as a worried look went over her face. When the operator looked up from the table to glance at his laptop, he found that the one who had ambushed him earlier wasn't quite done with him.

He found himself staring down a young-looking girl, with a seemingly genuine bit of interest in him. A head of golden hair with fairly long bangs, behind which glassy green eyes stared at his own tired blue ones. And then, of course, being a race that possessed the Y chromosome, his eyes lingered slightly downwards, where Mira's choice of loose clothing had his brain doing a wild 360.

His face went blank once again as he laid down his head on the table, unfocused eyes staring past Mira's face. Thoughts raced through his head as he confirmed that the sight in front of him was not a hallucination or something. Wait, maybe he was dreaming? Hahaha, hahahaha. Oh, wow. It's a real girl. Great. Yeah, I'm dreaming. Okay, dream, time to wake up. Come on. Come on...

"Markie, you ass, get up."

A certain annoying catgirl's voice roused him from his slump suddenly, jolting his eyes open. Staring at the tall half-finished latte in his hand, he gulped down the rest of the warm stimulant, and felt the effects of the first dose start to go into effect. Now he started to feel like himself. And of course, being himself, he wanted this girl out of his way as soon as possible.

A second look at Mira did make him think twice, though. Maybe...? Okay, time to sum up an introduction. Something for girls, something... compliments work. Okay, let's see, he thought, his mind racing at 110%. "I like a chest," stated Markus bluntly, blurting out the first thing that came to his head.


"... Yeah, he's going to blow it," said Raki, chuckling in amusement at his operator's lack of social aptitude.
Mira just stared blankly at Markus for a moment. Her brain didn't quite process his comment, as the words echoed into her ears. The girl tilted her head ever so slightly, her hair moving to reveal her green eyes just a little more as her expression remained unchanged. Her gaze was still fixed on the pale and possibly sickly Markus, as she tried to come up with some kind of response. What he had said made little sense to her.

Nyan however, seemed to get the right idea. At least, she just assumed the idea was right as her disappointment in the failure of a man could be seen upon her face. Did... did he really just say that? Did he really just say what i think he said? Nyan remarked a bit disturbed. She just shook her head. Clearly dealing with this man any further would just be problematic, and she had hoped Mira was in agreement. The problem was the girls poor taste, and inability to see the truth sometimes. Mira was a girl to live in her own sort of reality, which often caused more than enough trouble for the navi. Mira, a proper tactical option would be to cease and desist consorting with a man of this calibur. It isn't healthy for a yound girl like you to be associated with.. with... this. Her voice called out to the operator quite sternly, trying to get her point across.

Mira finally snapped back into reality, slowly shifting her attention to her PET. Nyan knew immediately by the look in Mira's eyes that things would not go well from here on out. Why me... She thought to herself as she awaited the expected response.

[But Nyan! Clearly this man is talking gibberish. It's worse than i thought. No normal person would act like this unless they were ill, and possibly delirious.] Her voice full of concern, yet Nyan wasn't sure if she was remaining oblivious to keep from slapping the man or acting poorly, or if she really didn't understand what had just happened. For her own sanity, or what was left, Nyan decided it best not to ask.

[What should we do? Should we call an ambulance? Do you want a doctor? Does your head hurt? How many fingers am i holding up?] She quickly spat out in Markus' directly, raising a hand with two fingers extended and slowly moving closer towards the man. She was at a loss for what to do.

Mira, perhaps you should zip up your hoodie... for...umm... you don't want to get sick too, do you? you shouldn't expose yourself too much, in case anything spreads! yes, you don't want to catch anything! Nyan attempted to trick the young girl, which really wasn't to hard at this point. So she figured anyways. Luckily enough, Mira was feeling extra gullibile today. [Oh my god! you're right!] She replied, immediately complying.

After taking care of one of the problems, mostly cause by her, Mira slowly realised the laptop. Voices had been heard from it once or twic,e though she hadn't [aid it much head. She wondered if it could be a navi talking to the man.

[excuse me! Are you his navigator?] Mira attempted to call to the person in the computer, trying to tilt her head to get a view of the screen. [ Do you know whats wrong with him?]
Blankness overrode Markus's thoughts shortly after his little quip, as if those few words took every fibre of coherence his mind had at present. Well, that was sort of true. After all, he had been running an all-nighter on the paper that was currently sitting in front of him. He liked to have his sleep in normal hours. Well... mostly normal, relative to a college student's sleeping pattern. After a couple of seconds, however, he connected his words with the higher functions of his brain, linking them towards a revelation of his faux pas. Panic struck him, his pupils dilating as he expected some sort of brutal punishment.

Raki looked on at the scene with a small glare of disbelief from the confines of the screen. This girl had to be either pure as a child or dumb as a brick. Possibly both. The catgirl sighed, turning towards her sister, who was now genuinely concerned for their operator. Riki's expression was a soft, maternal one. She had one hand to her lips, pondering what to do. Raki sighed as she scratched at her ears.

She clicked her tongue to get Riki's attention, then said, "Riki, go wake him up," gesturing with her head towards their broken operator.

Riki turned towards her sister, then nodded quickly as she shifted into her holographic form, walking over to Markus. At that time, Mira went to inquire of the man to Raki. The catgirl Navi raised an eyebrow at the strange concern Mira was showing for Markus. Was she a relative, perhaps? No, the way they treated each other didn't seem to show anything like it, she thought.

"Ah, yes, I'm his Navigator. Don't worry too much about him," said Raki, holding up her hands and grinning. "Scott's just not a morning person, is all." ...I can't completely sabotage the guy, really.

Meanwhile, Riki crept up to Markus, who was currently looking at Mira with a terrified expression on his face. She's going to have a big friendly boyfriend, and he's going to beat me up, and I'm going to be dead, and nobody's going to come for me, and my whole life was a lie, and- Riki merely looked at her operator with a sullen expression, and produced something in her hand. One of her "constructions", she checked it carefully, and pointed it directly at his face, making sure the impact would be felt.

"I-I'm sorry!"

Flopping her ears down, Riki braced herself as she blasted off her miniature RPG-7. Of course, the loaded ammo wouldn't affect anyone in the real world, but the sound effects certainly would. The regulars of the shop turned their heads for a second, but quickly turned away, finding the source of the voice to be a familiar sight. Markus started from his seat, standing up straight as he blinked.

Checking his surroundings, he found Riki trembling with the launcher in her arms, still smoking. "A-Ah, thanks for that, Riki," he sighed. Riki, still shaking, put up a hesitant smile as she saw the operator in somewhat better shape. Looking up, Markus also found Mira, who was currently questioning his Navi. Blood rushed to his head as he saw the girl, remembering some parts of his earlier misconduct. Swallowing a good deal of saliva, he shook off the cloudy feeling in his head, bowed his head, and said, "U-Um, I'm sorry for earlier..."
Mira scratched her head, looking at the screen a bit puzzled. Being as energetic as she was, she didnt quite understand the idea of "not beign a morning person". She loved mornings after all. [Oh... Um, ok then. As long as he isn't sick.] She giggled to herself softly, just shrugging off the matter. It wasn't really important anymore. Her attention turned to markus briefly, as he seemed to be having some sort of problem. She wanted to help but she had no idea how, and just assume this was part of the whole morning person problem. She looked back to the screen thinking about asking the navi a few questions. It was around this time that something clicked.

[You're so cute! I didn't get a good look the first time, but oh my god!] Mira started fangirling almost immidiately over the catgirl, with a large grin on her face. [I love cats, heehee. I'm so jelous~] Nyan's ears perked up at the last comment, a little insulted and hurt by the remark. The navi completely disregarded her usual protesting to her new feline-like image, and made her voice heard. J-jelous?! You have a perfectly good cat-like navi right here! What are you jelous about?! Nyaan almost immidiately clasped her mouth in embarassment realizing what she had just said, while Mira looked towards her PET and snickered. She raised the PET towards the screen of the laptop, hoping the two navi's could see eachother.

[So you finally admit it hmm? heehee. You're still my favorite. That doesnt mean more kitties wouldn't be fun.] She teased the poor military cat, before deciding to introduce her. [This is Nyan, my navi. She's a little stubborn, but once you get to know her she's quite amusing. Maybe you can hang out sometime, heehee~] Mira was overly cheerful, while Nyan just tried to hide her embarassment. Ther navi just looked off to the side, with her arms crossed infront of her chest. n-nice to meet you. The cat muttered.

As markus started to speak up again, Mira's attention once more was drawn the frail boy. She was still smiling softly, as she listened to his seemingly nervous apology. [Don't worry about it~] She replied instantly, since the whole situation was confusing for her regardless. She felt it would be better to just erase the whole misunderstanding from her memory. She didn't like to waste time figuring out the minor details.

[So what were you up to here, mister.. um...] It was at this point Mira realized he never introduced himself, and she hadn't been paying attention enough when the navi's had mentioned his name. She just looked somewhat stumped as she stared at him for a moment. [What was your name again?]

Raki recoiled slightly at the sudden repeated outburst of enthusiasm, having not been given much interaction with others, Navigator or human. She wasn't called "cute" very often, given that she usually met people with a knife whooshing over their heads. Turning red a little, she laughed awkwardly. "Ahaha, er, thanks," she said, bringing her hands to her back and grinning widely. Her tail was swishing about wildly, showing off a little bit of her flusteredness.

However, realizing what she was doing, she perked back up to her usual active self. A moment later, her ears perked slightly when she heard the other voice speak up of the girl's preferences. "Ooooh," said Raki, seeing Nyan displayed out to her. Seeing a slightly stand-offish character, she snickered quietly, making certain plans up in her head as they went along. "I'm Raki. Nice to meet you, too," she introduced herself confidently, bending over slightly forwards to examine the cat-styled military Navi.

Riki looked at the excited girl chatting it up with her sister, and sighed, taking a seat on the table as she looked down at her grenade launcher in her arms. Then, she began to work contentedly on its maintenance, finding that her sister had something to occupy herself with other than teasing Riki endlessly.

However, just at that moment, Raki glanced over, and saw her sister putting up the perfect opportunity. "Oh, and..." she started, putting up a finger before converting to her hologram mode. At once, she appeared above Riki, pouncing on the unsuspecting twin. Riki yelped in surprise, holding tightly on to her RPG, her fur standing on end. "... this is Riki, my sister," Raki introduced, still letting go of her sister.

"D-Don't scare me like that, sis... What if I was holding a live one?" stuttered Riki, making a distressed face as she got back up. She then made sure her weapon was fine, pouting as she turned away from Raki.

Markus seemed a little apprehensive still, though he noticed that Mira was open to apologies, however hastily-collected his own was. "Ah, er, Scott. Markus... Scott," he introduced himself, managing a small smile as he composed himself. Hey, maybe talking to real girls wasn't so bad, after all. "I'm just, uh, taking a bit of a break after finishing some homework. Lasted through all night," he said, chuckling to himself as he sized up the extent of his fatigue.
[Awwwww, she's so cute too!] Mira responded immidiately with a grin, as raki introduced riki to her. The girl was extactic to have so many feline styled navis in sight. Her love of the animal had her in such a good mood that had she actually understood what markus had said earlier, she probably would have just shrugged it off. One thing was definitely for sure though. Mira wanted Nyan and the twins to get along well. She couldn't see why they wouldn't, being the same species and all. Her logic was always simplistic like that. It didn't occur to her that there were personalities to keep in mind, regarding these things.

Nyan of course had a vague idea of what Mira had in mind. She had gotten used to the young girls train of thought, and she knew an impending proposition between Mira and markus was on its way. Nyan didn't have anything against the two navi's, persay. She was just uneasy in general about working or dealing with people she wasn't close with. People she didn't trust yet. It was a deep rooted feeling coming from the incident when she came to be in Mira's posession. That day still antagonized the poor navi.

Nyan tried to shake off the negative thoughts, returning her attention to the matter at hand. Mira, you're about to suggest something, aren't you... Nyan questioned nervously.

Mira just giggled to herself. [Hmmm? You know me so well, heehee. Just try to be polite, kay?] Her cheerful reply caused nyan to sigh slightly, but she nodded in acceptance, as Mira turned her attention to Markus once more.

[Well mister Markus, you should put down the homework and do something fun instead! Homework is such a waste of time~] Mira smiled as she moved closer to her new friend. [I mean, I've never done it, and I've made it through my classes just fine~ You're still young! You need to enjoy your self! I know the perfect thing, too! heehee] Mira tried to persuade him to forget about the boring assignments and school work, leaning closer to Markus while still keeping a friendly expression.

[Let's go virus hunting!]
Riki's attention perked up as Mira also commented on her fine appearance. "A-Ah, t-thank you," she replied, looking up for a bit, then turning back to her maintenance to hide her embarrassment. Raki chuckled heartily at her sister's performance, projecting one of her battleaxes for her to prop herself up while she stood, resting her arms and head on its handle.

Leaning towards Markus, she whispered some encouragement, if it could be called that. "I think you might actually stand a tiny shred of a chance, Scott. Look how blunt this girl is," she whispered, smirking in amusement as she imagined her operator fumbling his way around an actual female. "Shut up, Raki," replied Markus, who was trying his best to maintain his composure.

Meanwhile, Riki was furiously deconstructing and reassembling her gun. While her hands worked, she wondered what was under all that thick military gear, comparing it to the sisters' own rather light equipment. Riki also wondered what kind of person Nyan was. Was she the same as her boisterous tomboy of an armsmaster? Then, she shook her head quickly, berating herself for thinking about it that hard.

After all, she'd find out soon. All she had to do was go with the flow of things, like she always did.

Markus' brow furrowed slightly at the mention of casting off homework. Must be a freshman or something, he deduced. Sure, he'd also like to disregard homework and mess around on the internet all day, but his meager grades just wouldn't let him do that sort of thing. But, oh, whatever, he was finished with the day's work anyway. Let's see what she's going to suggest... thought Markus.

"Let's go virus hunting!"

Immediately, both Raki and Riki's eyes gleamed at the mention of "virus". Markus was about to get a word in, when Raki screamed to interrupt, "Yeah, let's do that! You love virus hunting, right, Scott?!" The operator grinned slightly, his upper lip twitching. He wanted to refuse. He should be refusing. It was his duty to refuse.

"Raki--" he started, starting to feel a little hesitant. "Pleeeeeeeease, Scott? I won't bother you for the entire day. Pleeeeeeease?" pleaded Raki, making a begging pose and putting on her best pitiful expression. Markus was at a loss, turning to Riki. Unfortunately, the other sister Navi looked even more pleading, with shining glassy eyes and forlorn smile.

"Aaaah, fine, fine," said Markus, sighing heavily. Digging through his pockets, he found some loose chips he was keeping for some reason, and laid them out on the table. "I just have three battlechips, though--" The twin Navigators interrupted him by shrieking in joy, jumping around each other madly. Raki looked just the type, though Riki looked ridiculously out of place. "Yaaaaaay~!" "Yaaaaaay~!" "We're going busting!" "We're going busting!"

A half-hearted grin took over Markus' face at that point, turning to Mira. "Haaaa... Well, any network you've got in mind, then, Mira?" he inquired tiredly.
[Yaaaaaaaaaaaay~] Mira chimed in, celebrating with the Navi's that they were all going to enjoy themselves for a bit. [We're all in agreement then! hehehe.] Of course when markus asked her where abouts she wanted to go, Mira drew a blank. The idea had just sort of come to her, so it wasn't as though she had a plan or anything. [Hmmm...] She pondered, looking around the room a bit, aimlessly before her navi decided to speak up.

Mira, Dentech should have a network we can explore. Wouldn't that be the most logical choice, seeing as we are already here? Getting right to the point, Nyan didn't want to sit arund while Mira weighed her options and ended up going no where any time soon. She tried not to show it, but she was actually a little excited herself at the idea of busting. Her tail on the otherhand was trecherous as usual, and began swaying in accordance with Nyans true feelings.

[Good idea nyan! Let's just jack in here. We can get started immidiately!] She chirped happily, looking around for a port of some kind to conenct her PET to. The young girl caught a glimpse of Nyan's body language, giggling as she did. [See? i knew you'd enjoy the idea, hehehe~]

Nyan was puzzled at first, but slowly turned her head to see the betrayer behind her. Blushing slightly as she grabbed hold of her own tail she stuttered a bit as she tried to save face. S-shut up! It's not like that. You dont know what your talking about... hmph. Nyan turned her back to the monitor, only to have Mira giggle once more.

[Whatever you say. So everyone, shall we?] Mira grinned, hooking her PET into the finally discovered port, and taking a seat at a nearby table.

[Let's go! Hehehe~]
"Sounds all right, I guess," said Markus, putting up his PET to scan the immediate area for a jack-in port. He quickly found it, and set his terminal to the mode he thought he'd never have to use. "Mode change, transmission..." he mumbled, pressing his temples as he slowly made his way through the setup process. Ah, whatever, he'd get through it. With all the recent things happening, the twins' potential was sure to have deteriorated. "Navigator transfer... set, normal. Jack in, Raki.EXE, Riki.EXE, Transmission 2," he said, trailing his voice at the last word.

"Time to go!" "Yaaaay!" the two Navis exclaimed as their holographic forms were encased in a wireframe and slowly disappeared into the network.

[Network Location: Dentech Net]
Mira leaned back in her chair as she watched the last battle come to a close. She placed the chips back into her pocket as she stood up, looking around. She had an issue with sitting still, Mira was just always so full of energy. She was also a little parched and being in a shop it was the perfect place to get a drink and a snack. It was at the moment the PET vibrated, signaling her that her navi was trying to converse. Unfortunately Mira was feeling much to impatient and with the battle over she figured she would let her navi rest a bit.

[Oh, hey Nyan. Sorry, can't talk. I'm gonna get a drink and talk to Markus a bit, heehee~ You just relax and have fun, ok? ] She cheerful retorted before closing the window and putting the PET into her hoodie. She was sure Nyan would be fine for a bit on her own, and she knew Nyan needed to learn how to deal with people more than herself.

Mira briskly walked over to the counter with a bounce in her step. She certainly didn't want a coffee even though she was in a coffee shop of all things, but the thought of tea or something similar made her smile. Thankfully they did have alternatives, so ordering a large tea double double wasn't out of the question. She was a little sad they were lacking a green variety, but she was still happy she got some form of tea at all. She took a brief sip from the beverage, pulling away slightly as she realized it was still a tad too hot for her tongue. She giggled to herself, palming the cup in both her hands, before making her way towards her new friend.

[Markus~ So tell me about yourself, hehehe. What do you like to do hmm? and how'd you get the cute little kitties?] Mira's curiosity was in full bloom as she questioned him.
Watching the screen with a disdainful groan, Markus grasped his hair and pulled at it lightly, trying to keep himself awake. He could already feel the caffeine's life-extending properties slowly draining from his mind, pulling him ever closer towards the dreamworld. Can't go to sleep now, gotta hand this in to class later... he thought, increasing the force of pulling on his hair.

A small voice to his side reminded him that there was someone beside him, on a virus busting run with his Navis. Well, not his Navis per se, but he was stuck with them indefinitely, so it was a moot point. Because of his desperate focus on fixing his wreck of a paper, he could not, at the moment, remember the girl's name for the life of him.

Super. Girl walks up to me and five minutes later I can't remember her name, thought Markus to himself. At that moment, Riki popped up on his screen, informing him of a break in their plan. Markus whisked her away with a wave of his hand and a click of the mouse. That was one distraction down, and he had gotten about 20% of the paper proofread. Good headway!

Unfortunately, he estimated his caffeine burst to last for a few more minutes, based on prior experience of the coffee shop's quality. Meanwhile, the girl which he had just forgotten the name of sauntered up to him, and asked him a few things. By this time, however, his focus was getting a little fuzzy, and all he got were a few disjointed phrases. It didn't help that she asked these questions rapidly, making it hard for his slowed cognitive functions to process the input.

"Hold on, hold on, hold on," muttered Markus, holding up a hand to stop the girl's chatter. Putting a hand into his pocket, he pulled out a small wad of money, and picked out one that looked large enough of a denomination. "I'll talk, I'll talk. Just... get me something to keep me awake. Point the guy over there at me, and tell him I need the works. Please," he said, holding out the note towards the girl.
Mira looked puzzled for a moment, still not familiar with the idea of lacking energy. Nor had she ever had coffee, but that was mostly due to the recommendation of frightened acquaintances. The thought of Mira mixed with the potency of caffeine was enough to make even the manliest folk tremble in fear. Still, even though she didn't get it that didn't mean she wouldn't help out her new friend.[No worries, I got it covered. Heehee~] She cheerfully responded, refusing to take his money and pulling out some of her own. She put her delicious tea down for the moment onto the table, and quickly scampered over to the counter once more.

[He needs a... works? The works? Something to keep him awake anyways.] Her order only barely understood by the minimum wage employee behind the counter, who gave her a wierd look as he prepared the drink and took her payment. A faint mumbling about not getting paid enough, and dealing with the crazies could be heard under his breath as he handed her the drink, but Mira remained oblivious to the remark. With beverage in hand the energetic girl wasted little time in returning to Markus, almost spilling the drink in the process as she danced around a customer she hadn't realized was getting out of his seat. A slur about ignorant youth once again ignored by Mira.

[Here you go! This should be good right? right?] Extending the cup with a cheerful smile as she stared in anticipation of any sort of reaction to show Markus was still alive. Placing it before him, she swiftly took her own drink once more within her grasp, sipping happily from it as she continued to gaze at Markus.

[So come on, tell me about you and the kitties, heehee~]
Markus's hand flopped about as Mira went to gather him some starters for his eyes. He groaned as he threw his head down onto the desk, and wished his paper was done for him. A short while later, his tall order arrived at his hand, and he grasped it with fervor. After finding that touching the cup almost froze his fingers off, he smirked, and pulled off the cover.

Some bizarre green liquid bubbled about inside, releasing a cold cloud of freezing mist. He gulped down some saliva, and brought the cup to his lips. In a flash, he downed a third of the contents before putting it on the table. He exhaled repeatedly, causing his frosty breath to show. "That's the works all right. Thanks a bunch, Mira," said Markus, wiping off his mouth roughly with his arm. He was now wide awake.

... For a few hours, that is; "The Works" only lasted one for about four hours of non-stop hyperactivity, after which a twenty-hour crash was needed. He'd have to make use of that time efficiently. Typing frantically on the keyboard in front of him, he racked his brain into double time, checking the paper in front of him as well as recalling his memory about his two Navigators.

"Well, leeet's see now. Markus Scott, as you already knew. Nineteen, only son of late crackpot Navigator researcher Orin Kammen and extremely cat-attached secretary Maya Kammen, formerly known as Maya Scott. I like to read up on stuff online about things like computers and cartoons and cooking and video games and home improvement and what have you. Also not actually doing anything with my reading," he started, running off a slew of history on himself.

He had no idea how he was pulling out everything about himself without a second thought, but he was simply too busy rewriting his paper. "Raki and Riki were part of my dad's crazy project to forget about an old Navi he had that had left him before either me or my mother were around. He called his project some fancy name I didn't really care for when I was five years old, but he kept mentioning forges and fires or something to that effect, so I guess that has something to do with it."

"Ran off when I was six, what a... shame-- left his old PET in the attic, where mom found it like twelve years later after. Shoves it off to me, saying I should take care of it and find my dad or something," he said, adding a note of bitterness to the last part of his sentence. His fingers were still rapidly going across the keyboard, now at one and a half rewritten pages of his paper.

"Aaaaand here I am, a year after all of this tragic novel-worthy history, finishing off a paper someone else passed off to me because he was too lazy to do it himself. And... well, I guess they're cute-- no, scratch that, Raki's hell to deal with. Riki's what you'd call cute, heh," he ended, chuckling to himself.

Just then, he thought of something that could well increase his chances of getting actual work done: distraction tactics. "I'm sure that was pretty boring to listen to. How about you tell me something about yourself?" he asked, quite sure that the energetic Mira could and would run on and on about things. Filtering out things that weren't useful to him and only taking the important bits, he could contain some imitation of a conversation.
[Awwwww, that sounds so sad!]

Mira frowned as Markus told her his life story, or so it seemed anyways. It was a bit much to swallow, but Mira was barely phased dispite her comment. She was the type to just shrug off negative emotion like it had never been there, as if she was surrounded by some sort of hyper armor of happiness and energy.

[You don't sound very depressed about it though.]

The young girl added bluntly, not really understanding why he seemed to impartial to the comments he himself had made. Was it his sickly condition? Or perhaps there was something he hadn't mentioned. Mira was getting completely ready to pry on the subject, but thankfully she got distracted by his next topic.

[Haha, I'm sure its not that bad! Nothing that cute can be that bad!] Reacting to the remark about the twins as swiftly as ever. Mira's talent to change subjects with the flow was about as unnatural as her constant supply of energy, and it was a miracle there were any people in her life who could deal with her hectic performances. [Nyan has her moments, but she's totally cute and fun too! When she stops being so stuffy, heehee~]

She paused for a moment as Markus put his secret plan into action, turning to topic into one on Mira and hoping she'd talk about herself for the rest of the conversation. Unfortunately, things regarding Mira are never so easy.

[Mmmmm... Not much to say really! I'm just you're typical run of the mill girl! Who just happens to like cats! ]

Mira found the topic of herself boring, and rarely would speak at length in regards to it. After all, she knew everything about herself already so why bother going on and on about it. Not only that, but taking into account her very out going style of speech and attitude, there wasn't much you couldn't find out about her on your own. Mira just figured there was no point in spoiling it for others by listing it all, since it took all the fun out of it.

[Oh, speaking of, we should see how the kitties are all doing! I'm sure they're getting along great, don't you think so?] She chirped as she fumbled around with her PET, trying to turn the connection to Nyan back on and get a visual.
Markus was rather disappointed that his tactic didn't quite work out, and he clicked his tongue. His paper was now done, thanks to the miracles of modern-day... substances. Whatever was in that cup, he didn't know, and he didn't want to know. Picking it up again, the sweetness of the cup's contents doubled his concentration, and he managed to catch several errors he didn't see earlier through his paper. They weren't kidding about this stuff, he thought, glancing at the green-stained cup.

"I'm sure cats get along pretty easily," said Markus, as he typed down the last paragraphs of his paper at lightning speed, the ideas from his head rushing forth from the spring that was his enhanced concentration into a cascading waterfall that was his fingers, dancing across his keyboard. Soon after, just as he typed the last letter of his paper, his PET beeped annoyingly with a blaring alarm tone.

"Oh crap," he said, barely stopping himself from more colorful words.

He had just a few minutes to pack up, run to the Philosophy faculty building, and pray to the heavens that Professor Blanchard was goofing off with his PET in his room for just a few more minutes. A burning resolve from within his very core drove him onwards to victory. The passion of education. ... Or that could just be the green stuff rotting his insides. For all Markus cared, he could drop on the pavement, but he wasn't not going to fail this class if he could help it.

He had no choice but to disconnect his PET from the network for the moment, and reconnect afterwards. It was messy, but he had no time to get the approval of his cats for a jack out, which would take forever. Forced jackouts were a no-no, too; he had been on the receiving end of a wired Raki to know not to do that. Thus, hastily typing out a notice to both of the cats, knowing that they weren't going to be in any battle routine for a while, he made his plan. "I'mreallysorryMirabutIhaveaclassrightnowandIhavetohurry, thankyouforpayingandyourcompanyI'moff!" he blurted out with a frantic bow. Markus slammed the laptop cover shut, stuffed the PET, cables and all, into his jacket pocket, and gulped down the last of the green stuff. Not three seconds later, he was already out the door.