Sneaking out with friends

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Touching down in the dark netspace of Yoka Rogue once more, Eternalis and Aurora appeared in a beam of light, next to Lyntael, who had been transported along with them. Both of them were carrying something along for the trip, with the former holding a black bottle of liquor, and the other with a bundle of towels under her arm. Harke's face appeared in a screen next to them.

"Alright, looks like you got through fine. The entrance point should be just a walk along this path," reported Harke.

Eternalis looked out towards the direction that the path was in, and narrowed his eyes. "Might not be the most uneventful walk," he muttered, turning to Aurora and meeting eyes with her. The same concern was in her eyes, as they both turned back in the same direction. Aurora's orange visor materialized in front of her eyes.

"I can confirm a bunch of viruses around the area," stated Aurora, as data streamed across her eyes, duplicating itself in Eternalis's peripheral viewer as well. She turned to Lyntael. "Looks like one more to go before we get there. We'll get through them," she smiled, trying to display her confidence as best as she could.

[Rogue Battle 1 - Ready.]
[Eternalis.EXE: Aqua/Team (One for All/Unify, Undershirt): 600HP.]
[Aurora.EXE: Elec/Team (Tag Along/All for One, Second Chance, Planeswalking): 100HP.]
((Lyntael, following from => Harke's Homepage))
----------

As she arrived in the open network space again, Lyntael looked around and relaxed quickly once she began to see somewhat familiar landmarks not far from where they had originally arrived and met up. She could feel the presence of the emulation point jump forward bright in her awareness suddenly, from a distant, detached impression with no direction, when she had been at Aurora and Eternalis' home, to a very direct point now that she was back net-side and close to it.

She looked at her companions and nodded as Harke pointed them in the right direction. Her grin faltered a moment as her companions both took on a more serious expression and spoke about what else they were picking up. She supposed it wasn't as simple as crossing the road really, since they had to come back through this darker point in the net, but...

“Already, really? We were only just here a... well... I guess it was almost an hour ago now, wasn't it?” She rubbed at her arm and shoulder and looked around, then straightened and took a longer breath, following along with her friends. “Maybe if we're quick, nothing will notice us?” She tried a vaguely hopeful smile back towards Aurora's reassurance, and picked up her pace to fall in with the other two.

((Selecting Gust and Airstep))
((Consent confirmed for allied Team types))
((Ready for Battle 1))
Lyntael was hoping for the best, but probably expecting the usual: namely, a virus attack, as she, Eternalis, and Aurora set foot back into Yoka Rogue Net. For a while, it seemed like they might not encounter much of anything. Fluffy clouds were going by in the sky, the kind that might indicate rain, but still looked so puffy and white you might be able to sit upon them. The only unusual factor: the clouds appeared to be a little lower to the net than usual. Perhaps they were the mist that sometimes rises from the onsen in Yoka Net?

Only, that wasn't the case: over-sized, puffy clouds really were moving across the net, casing shadows beneath them. Rain was beginning to open up, though only beneath the clouds. On that note, one of the clouds was headed right for them, and with it, a slew of viruses, lurking in the shade of the clouds and even upon the cloud itself. The navis would spot a cannon peaking off over the top, along with two small clouds that were animated enough to reveal themselves as viruses. Beneath, many familiar faces were waiting, including two of the viruses Lyntael had been told to hunt, but also various other viruses. There seemed to be no chance that the viruses were just going to let them go around, as the Aquagear was the first to react to their presence, opening wide and creating a roar that was really more of a whistle, alerting the other viruses. The cannon swerved, the clouds puffed, and the fish began a'flopping, spoiling for combat.

-- Viruses --
Viruses up upon a cloud!
CannonDumb2CannonDumb2 (CannonDumb)

CannonDumb viruses attack any targets in sight every action they are able to. They can and will attack objects, but only objects they can damage. They will not waste cannon fire on IronBody, Shadow, or Invisible targets. The exception is Canodumb DS, which will fire at anything with its DarkCannon's beam blasts. All CannonDumb viruses may opt to spend one action prior to attacking marking their opponent with target lock. They gain the 10% accuracy benefit of Take Aim against this opponent for any and all follow-on attacks until they lose sight of the target, or switch targets.

Area: ACDC, SciLab, Electown, Yoka

HP: 130
Primary Attack Damage/Effect: 60 Null
Primary Attack Accuracy: A
Primary Attack Description: Fires its cannon after aiming.
Secondary Attack Damage/Effect: Mark Target
Secondary Attack Accuracy: S
Secondary Attack Description: Marks an enemy within line of sight with a target lock that raises the accuracy of this virus by +1 Rank (10%) until the virus is forced to switch targets or loses sight of the marked target (they take cover).
Element: None
Possible Rewards (Per Virus): Hi-Cannon, Zenny
Special: Immobile
: 130 HP
CloudierCloudier (Cloudy)

Area: Yoka, Netopia, Sharo

HP: 140
Attack: 80 Aqua + Group Attack
Attack Accuracy: C
Attack Description: Summons a rainstorm that lasts 2 turns.
Element: Aqua
Possible Rewards (Per Virus): MediumCloud, Zenny
Special: Immune to Ground Attacks.
- Rainstorm lasts 2 turns.
- Virus attacks every 3 turns.
A: 140 HP
CloudierCloudier (Cloudy)

Area: Yoka, Netopia, Sharo

HP: 140
Attack: 80 Aqua + Group Attack
Attack Accuracy: C
Attack Description: Summons a rainstorm that lasts 2 turns.
Element: Aqua
Possible Rewards (Per Virus): MediumCloud, Zenny
Special: Immune to Ground Attacks.
- Rainstorm lasts 2 turns.
- Virus attacks every 3 turns.
B: 140 HP

Creatures crawling below a cloud...
KarmaKarma (Dharma)

Dharma move and dodge at average speed. Their puck attacks rebound off of the edges of the battlefield as if there were an invisible wall there. They can rebound up to 3 times before finally passing off of the field or dissipating into thin air. The pucks pass through anything they hit except boundary walls, terrain, and friendly viruses. The pucks can not damage other Dharmas. This virus cannot attack while moving.

Area: Yoka, Netopia, Sharo, NetVegas

HP: 170
Attack Damage/Effect: 45 Null + Break + Piercing + Rebound(3) + Ground Attack
Attack Accuracy: E
Attack Description: Throws a Hockey puck at the enemy. Break.
Element: None
Possible Rewards (Per virus): AirHockey2, Zenny
A: 170 HP [Onsen]
KarmaKarma (Dharma)

Dharma move and dodge at average speed. Their puck attacks rebound off of the edges of the battlefield as if there were an invisible wall there. They can rebound up to 3 times before finally passing off of the field or dissipating into thin air. The pucks pass through anything they hit except boundary walls, terrain, and friendly viruses. The pucks can not damage other Dharmas. This virus cannot attack while moving.

Area: Yoka, Netopia, Sharo, NetVegas

HP: 170
Attack Damage/Effect: 45 Null + Break + Piercing + Rebound(3) + Ground Attack
Attack Accuracy: E
Attack Description: Throws a Hockey puck at the enemy. Break.
Element: None
Possible Rewards (Per virus): AirHockey2, Zenny
B: 170 HP [Onsen]
MuckfeeshMuckfeesh (Mudfeesh)

This virus looks like a sausage shaped fish with a brown underbelly, a blue/green/red/black back (depending on the version) with a wavy dorsal fin, a mouth that constantly gasps for air, beady little eyes and a large flat tail that it uses to propel itself. It moves by flopping around very erratically, granting the family a passive dodge effect.

Area: Yoka, Okuden Valley, Beach, Yumland

HP: 100
Attack Damage/Effect: 45 Wood + Impact + Blind
Attack Accuracy: B
Attack Description: It leaps at its target, attempting to slam into it with its slimy belly.
Element: Wood
Possible Rewards (Per Virus): MudFlop2, Zenny
Special: One passive dodge per turn.
-Creates mud terrain where it moves.
A: 100 HP [Onsen]
MuckfeeshMuckfeesh (Mudfeesh)

This virus looks like a sausage shaped fish with a brown underbelly, a blue/green/red/black back (depending on the version) with a wavy dorsal fin, a mouth that constantly gasps for air, beady little eyes and a large flat tail that it uses to propel itself. It moves by flopping around very erratically, granting the family a passive dodge effect.

Area: Yoka, Okuden Valley, Beach, Yumland

HP: 100
Attack Damage/Effect: 45 Wood + Impact + Blind
Attack Accuracy: B
Attack Description: It leaps at its target, attempting to slam into it with its slimy belly.
Element: Wood
Possible Rewards (Per Virus): MudFlop2, Zenny
Special: One passive dodge per turn.
-Creates mud terrain where it moves.
B: 100 HP [Onsen]
AquagearAquagear (Raingear)

This virus family is positively deadly when fighting on Ice Terrain, to the point where the players are at a severe disadvantage. Unless you just have it in for the player, try not to combine the two very often. I'm serious about this. -Pally

Area: Yoka, Beach, Sharo

HP: 160
Primary Attack Damage/Effect: 45 Aqua + Wide Attack + Ground Attack
Primary Attack Accuracy: B
Primary Attack Description: Blasts enemy with a geyser that bursts suddenly from the ground.
Secondary Attack Damage/Effect: 60 Aqua + Group Attack + Ground Attack
Secondary Attack Accuracy: D
Secondary Attack Description: Blasts the enemy with a marching line of geysers.
Element: Aqua
Possible Rewards (Per Virus): WaterLine2, AquaTower2, Zenny
Special: This virus' attacks will freeze the target solid on ice terrain.
: 160 HP [Onsen]

-- Navis --
Everybody is on normal terrain in front of the cloud.
Eternalis: 600 HP [Normal terrain]
Aurora: 100 HP [Normal terrain]
Lyntael: 150 HP [Normal terrain]

-- Terrain --
20% Normal
80% Onsen

-- Objects --
Big Fluffy Cloud: 200 HP (You can get on top by spending an action, it's large enough to cover all the onsen! The cloud rains every turn, turning terrain underneath it into Onsen)

-- Rogue Battle 1 Ready? Start!! --
All was quiet between the three as Eternalis and Aurora led the way, looking around in every direction to ensure that they wouldn't be ambushed by the viruses that they had seen earlier. The gathering of viruses appeared to be clustered in a small area. They were still a fair distance away, however, and Aurora raised her hand to stop everyone, in order to consider their approach. It was quite a sizable number, all things considered, as worry painted Eternalis and Aurora's expressions.

"That's a lot of them... though it looks like there's a side path over to your left?" Harke piped up quietly through the comms link.

The two of them looked to the side. True enough, in their worry, they had overlooked a small exit, which looked to circumvent the mass of viruses. Thus, Aurora nodded to the operator, and quietly beckoned to the rest with her head over into the path, leading the way forward.

As tense as it was, it seemed safe enough for the moment, and after a while, it seemed like they would be able to avoid fighting anything after all. They were very close to their destination, and the side route that they had taken was also surprisingly somewhat scenic, with puffy clouds creating an idyllic background over some running rivers that occasionally pooled into larger reservoirs.

Eternalis let out a small sigh. Looking up at the clouds in the skies, it looked like it was about to rain again. "Never thought I'd be glad not to find any viruses," he noted, attempting to break the tense silence. He narrowed his eyes slightly, recalling the last time it rained in this particular part of the network. Surely they wouldn't make the same mistake of falsely flagging Lyntael twice? It would definitely be unpleasant to be caught up in the Memory Fault again, and there was no guarantee that they would even meet the same "caretaker" as they did before. He considered the option of turning back to the path that they had taken before.

Before he could present the idea, however, Aurora suddenly halted in place, and stared up at the sky at something coming from the side. "Is that cloud... moving towards us?" she muttered.

As soon as she made the observation, one of the clouds in the sky suddenly sped down towards them, and they were able to hear the unmistakeable skittering noises of the incoming viruses. A small few were on top of the cloud itself, but what was more surprising was that somehow, some of them had also been lurking within the dark shadow of the cloud itself without them being able to notice until they were too close to avoid. "We were so close, too!" complained Eternalis. Looking at the bottle in his hand, he opted to hold it with his good hand for the moment.

"Try to take out a chunk of the viruses at the bottom half," said Harke, sending off two Electric-type battlechips to both of the programs.

Eternalis was quick on the draw, charging up the chip that he had just received. Raising his deformed arm, the slime began to bubble vigorously and enlarged into a massive three-clawed limb. A ball of energy coalesced in its palm, crackling with electrical charge, before it thunderously blasted off towards an Aquagear in the middle of the virus pack.

Even through the din of the blast, however, he still managed to call out another request. "Harke, StepSword, Katana!" he yelled out, which the operator obliged to. "On it!"

Aurora, meanwhile, preferred a more strategic outlook. The cloud up high was a good place to start, she thought. Looking up at the cannon aiming down on them, however, Aurora turned towards Lyntael, the only member of their party with a high enough jump to reach it easily. "Lyntael, you can get up on that cloud. Those three viruses need to be taken out, and we get a better vantage point from up there," she said. Before she could do anything, however, she felt a sudden pull at her waist. "Wha--?!" she exclaimed, turning to see Eternalis with his deformed arm hooked around her, before they both vanished in a wisp of smoke.

When they rematerialized, Aurora found herself and Eternalis on top of the massive cloud, and the latter released her from his grasp. She awkwardly regained her stance, holding the bundled up towels close to her chest. "Um, thanks?" she blurted out, confused and slightly dizzy from the unannounced relocation. She had meant to stay on the ground while Lyntael cleared it out before going back up herself if needed.

"Sorry about that; can't have you triggering that EJO again, you know," explained Eternalis with an apologetic look, as his mutated half reconfigured itself into a wide, heavy blade. The expression on his face turned into a mischievous smile. "I feel like being selfish once in a while," he grinned, before activating the StepSword data given to him and vanishing back under the cloud.

Aurora blinked a few times, trying to process the gesture, before she heard the whir of the nearby Cannondumb's movements, snapping her back to attention. Had to do what she could while she was up here, she thought, readying her combat stance once more, though it looked a little silly with what she was holding. Activating the ClusterShot, an array of eight electrical orbs appeared around her, which rocketed towards the two Cloudier around her. She readied herself to avoid any retaliation, and looked out for Lyntael to hopefully join her on the cloud as well.

Underneath her, in the shade of the cloud, Eternalis landed in the onsen waters with a splash, swinging his morphed sword-arm in a wide slash at an unfortunate pair of Mudfeesh-types that happened to be near his landing point. "Come at me!" he yelled out. His morphed sword-arm now powered by the Katana chip, he swung hard and fast, ready to bisect any of the viruses that remained to fight against him.

// Summary -- One for All (Eternalis): Receive 50% Damage from Aurora

[Et.1] Chip: ElecReel2Damage: 100 + Spread 3 (Side + Behind)
Accuracy: B
Description: A small bolt of lightning that spreads sideways and behind the target upon impact.
Duration: Once
Element: Elec
: 100 + Spread 3 (Side + Behind) (Acc: B) @ Aquagear + Karma A/B + Muckfeesh A (Vs. Aqua: Elec+100)
[Au.1] Act: Evade incoming attacks: Dodge

[Et.2] Sig: Rapid Sublimation: Teleport @ Onto Big Fluffy Cloud (Tag Along: Aurora)
[Au.2] Chip: ClusterShot2Damage: 10 x 8 Shots + Variable Targeting
Accuracy: B
Description: Launches a volley of eight plasma spheres at targets designated by the user.
Duration: Once
Element: Elec
Special: Variable Targeting: Allows the user to select a target for each individual hit of an attack. This means they may strike the same target multiple times, multiple different targets, or a mix of the two as they wish.
: 10 x 8 Shots + Variable Targeting (Acc: B) @ Cloudier A x4 + Cloudier B x4 (Same-Element: Elec+15, Vs.Aqua: Elec+25)

[Et.3] Chip: StepSwordDamage: 120 + Slashing + Wide Attack + Teleport
Accuracy: S for primary target, A for additional targets.
Description: The user warps in front of an enemy, then swings with a strong sword. Can hit up to 3 targets with good RP. Rare
Duration: Once.
Element: Null
Special: Teleport: When RP Quality is excellent, this attack also counts as a free dodge.
: 120 + Slashing + Wide Attack + Teleport (Acc: S for primary target, A for additional targets.) @ Muckfeesh A/B
[Au.3] Act: Evade incoming attacks: Dodge

[Et.*] Sig: Influx Aegis: Support Base Heal 20 @ Self, Aurora, Lyntael

[Et.4] Chip: Katana2Damage: (80 + Slashing + Wide Attack) Then (80 + Slashing + Long Attack)
Accuracy: B
Description: Creates a long metal blade with exceptional cutting speed. Hits with a wide slash, then a long slash in the span of a single action, hitting 3 and 2 targets, respectively. Only one target can be hit with both slashes. Rare
Duration: Until Overridden/Broken. Breaks automatically after 2 uses.
Element: Null
: (80 + Slashing + Wide Attack) Then (80 + Slashing + Long Attack) (Acc: B) @ Remaining Enemies under Cloud (Use 1/2)
[Et.5] Act: Evade incoming attack: Dodge
[Et.6] Chip: Katana2Damage: (80 + Slashing + Wide Attack) Then (80 + Slashing + Long Attack)
Accuracy: B
Description: Creates a long metal blade with exceptional cutting speed. Hits with a wide slash, then a long slash in the span of a single action, hitting 3 and 2 targets, respectively. Only one target can be hit with both slashes. Rare
Duration: Until Overridden/Broken. Breaks automatically after 2 uses.
Element: Null
: (80 + Slashing + Wide Attack) Then (80 + Slashing + Long Attack) (Acc: B) @ Remaining Enemies under Cloud (Use 2/2)

[Et.*] Sig: Influx Aegis: Support Base Heal 20 @ Self, Aurora, Lyntael
Moving as quietly a she could, Lyntael crept along with her companions, unconsciously holding her breath for tense stretches as they skirted a major viral group. Evne though they seemed to avoid the first group the happened upon, the nerves of sneaking past such a sizeable gathering gave the younger girl more trepidation that the more experienced virus busters. A rapid heart beat and a faint tingle in her skin were the more muted signs of her caution. As they moved around, she felt relieved that the exact extraction point she needed was further beyond the cluster, and not right in the middle of them. She was probably close enough to force the connection through form here, at a guess, but not to take anyone with her; she'd need to be right near the landing point for that. Oh well, not far now.

She watched Aurora and Eternalis trade signs and gestures with a familiarity that felt reassuring, and by the time they'd passed by far enough to relax she scrubbed a hand through her hair and grinned. Errant motes of static came away in her fingers, but it wasn't much.

“It's kind of familiar to me...” she ducked her head slightly, a little self-conscious about the detail. “When I'm on my own doing something for Rogan, I try to avoid things, or run away from them, quite a bit... honestly, most viruses don't really chase you very far if you make it clear you just want to escape...” It was a thought she'd pondered many times; even if they seemed malicious on contact, very few viruses seemed to actively want to seek out or hurt navigators, unless they ran into each other accidentally. Lone or unoperated navis were more likely to be in danger from other navis hunting them, than from viruses, as it turned out. She shook off a small shudder and looked back to her friend,s then forward to where they were heading.

It was a nice day; better not to dwell on things like that. She stretched and skipped forward a little more freely once they seemed to be clear, and then looked forward to the approaching rain front with a grin.

“Nice as the rain is, I'm glad we'll get there before—” she cut off, closing her mouth and catching her breath as Aurora signed for a sudden halt. moments later she picked out the same obvious shapes and sounds that the others had already identified, and winced. She supposed it was too much to hope for, though, all told. the other two prepared for combat, neither concerned enough to abandon the other things they were carrying, and Lyntael tried to take some more comfort from that little detail, though her eyes drifted with concern to the rolled towel that Aurora was still holding.

“What... what should I do...?” She found herself whispering, despite the fact that the time for stealth was past, and looked between them for any instructions. Eternalis was already opening the attack and she shied back a half step as his slightly more monstrous arm...did its thing... As her eyes counted the shapes she could see, the nerves returned and the low pulse of her charge rose to a hum that began to suffuse her skin with visible patterns, arcing lines of light across the pale canvas.

Her attention turned more to Aurora, since Eternalis was fully engaged on diving in, and began to nod as the other woman gave her a quick suggestion. She swallowed, setting her shoulders, and looked up at the cloud above.

“Okay... Okay I can —Ah!” A small squeak of surprise cut her off part way through as Eternalis interrupted and pulled Aurora away with him, leaving Lyntael alone for a moment. She glanced about, looking for the pair, caught sight of them up above then took a longer breath. This was alright. She'd been given a goal, and she could do that much, at least.

Opening her eyes again, Lyntael let out her held breath slowly, the extended one hand, drawing out the pulse of energy that formed her barrier. It came quickly and with an ease that surprised her, settling as it stabilised just past her strikers and fading from sight. No problem. Next...

There were lots of enemies, but only a few she should be focusing on. With that in mind, the girl set herself, then darted forward quickly, crouching low for long enough to draw a large amount of air currents in and around her before leaping up. The gust encircled her as she leapt, vest and skirt whipping rapidly in the small gale, and formed a stiff updraught that carried her up high and across towards the virus that Aurora has pointed out. the air current was fierce and persistent enough to drag anything close to her along with it, but Lyntael tried, just for the moment, to shut out any tag-alongs she may have acquired.

Instead, as she reached the top of her jump and turned over in the air, she controlled her own descent to land neatly just behind the cannon that was mounted improbably in the otherwise very soft cloud surface. At first she'd been puzzled by the sight; clouds didn't really hold weight like that, but this one clearly did. For a brief moment she made eye contact with Aurora, not far from her once more on the cloud, then turned her attention back to the turret between them. Unconsciously, her body had settled into a graceful combat stance after she'd uncurled from her landing, and as she focused on the cannon, she pushed her building charge further. It had started already, but she drew it on, filling herself with the uncomfortable rush of it until she couldn't' hold any more. Her left palm had drawn back further as she focused, and when she struck it was with an explosive release that drove forward toward the main housing and caused a flare of energy that cast a near blinding electrical light around the release point for a few moments.

She pulled back from the sudden drain; the enervating sensation was familiar now, and it wasn't as bad as it might have been, though she still had to catch her breath. the ache was only small, for now, and though she could feel her charge rapidly starting to build again from the dull void such a full expenditure left behind, she felt in control still, more or less. Her body pulsed with energy, sending off another small cascade of sparks in every direction as she tried to keep her charge balanced and in check.

She'd never really be good at this, probably, and she was aware that while she'd shut most of the surrounding danger out of her senses, the past few seconds of caution and focus for her, and this one target, had probably been ample time for her allies to do far, far more... but as long as she could keep control of herself and contribute where she could, that was a good start.

Summary
L*) Subtype: All attacks containing Knockback or Pull gain Wind-Type.
L1) My Pain is Real ((On Set: Self-Slow2), Counter(When Hit): 40Elec, Knockback, Nova3, A)(Overcharge +1 on Set, +2 on Trigger)
L2) My Heart Falters (80Elec Barrier, Buster Charge, Off-Target1)(Overcharge -2)
L3) Dodge
L4) High Jump (Updraught of Blast2 with jump, all non-anchored targets thrown into HA), up to cloud layer, to land by Cannondumb along with anything else caught in the wind
L5) Buster Charge
L6) Full Charge Buster Strike (120Elec, Disarm, A, at Cannondumb)(Overcharge +3)
L*) A Manifest Spirit (15Elec Nova2, A)(Overcharge -1)

Cooldowns and Overcharge

My Pain is Real: 3TCD
My Heart Falters: 3TCD

Overcharge: Begin: 0, My Pain is Real (Set) +1, My Heart Falters -2, Full Charge Strike +3, Manifest Spirit -1, End: +2
A crackle of thunder announced the end of the stand-off. Eternalis' first volley annihilated the Aquagear in a flash, literally and figuratively; spewing black smoke from an unbolted jaw, it collapsed into a sparking heap that quickly faded. The Muckfeesh flopped to sit itself right where the ElecReel wasn't; the Karmas each had exactly enough time to veer sideways before the lightning was upon them. Moving in jagged arcs through the steamy air, one zigged when they should have zagged and was stricken from the face of the Net. The survivor skidded to a stop, and let loose a vengeful puck. It veered wide, missing Eternalis and company by light years...until a distant clack echoed, it screamed back on the rebound, and Eternalis very nearly left his ankles behind as he teleported to the cloud's top (-45). It careened once more through the space where Aurora had been standing pre-warp, and then it was off to parts unknown.

As Lyntael gathered her own electric might and launched herself skyward after the teleporting duo, the dual Cloudiers moved to circle Aurora atop the cloud, preparing a rainstorm between the two of them. As Lyntael landed, they unleashed their attacks as a unit, rain howling and puddling atop the cloud in a display fit to make a meteorologist cry. For a time, the electric maidens seemed to dance between raindrops, before Aurora's ball lightning decimated each Cloudier where they floated, leaving two umbrellas floating off into a blue sky. As the rain cleared, a target lock appearing over Lyntael's chest was their only warning before the CannonDumb's muzzle erupted. Static caught the bullet before it could connect, leaving the air around the young Navi crackling. The turret did its best to weather her retaliatory strike, but withered under the steady, innate pulse of lightning.

Beneath the cloud, Eternalis did his part to clean the rest of the mess up. A neat bit of work with a sword and a teleport skewers two Muckfeesh on his blade with one sweep, and after that all that's left is to hack at a Karma with an Electopian blade until there was nothing left to be gained from the exercise. As Eternalis' systems worked their magic, all the viruses had to show for their efforts was the tiniest scuff amongst the blue pudding. It was, in short, a rout.

-- Viruses --
Viruses up upon a cloud!
CannonDumb2: DELETED
Cloudier A: DELETED
Cloudier B: DELETED

Creatures crawling below a cloud...
Karma A: DELETED
Karma B: DELETED
Muckfeesh A: DELETED
Muckfeesh B: DELETED
Aquagear: DELETED

-- Navis --
Everybody is on normal terrain in front of the cloud.
Eternalis: 595 HP [Onsen]
Aurora: 100 HP [Big Fluffy Cloud]
Lyntael: 150 HP [Big Fluffy Cloud] [Off-Target] [My Pain is Real: Ready] [20HP Barrier] [Overcharge: +2]

-- Terrain --
20% Normal
80% Onsen

-- Objects --
Big Fluffy Cloud: 200 HP (You can get on top by spending an action, it's large enough to cover all the onsen! The cloud rains every turn, turning terrain underneath it into Onsen)

-- BATTLE #1: VICTORY!! --
Eternalis GET: 3000z, 27 Bugfrags
Lyntael GET: 3000z, 27 Bugfrags

Everyone GET: 6 Mutual FXP
[Z > 20345, BF > 242, LynFXP > 231.]

With the viruses routed, Eternalis stood for a moment under the raincloud, letting the water run off his body. The part of his leg that grazed the destructive hockey puck from earlier undulated about as it repaired itself rapidly, leaving only a tiny chunk missing. The steam from the water he was standing in was obscuring his vision, and he stepped out from the cloud to survey the area if there were any stragglers in the midst.

"That's all of them. Ending battle routine," reported Harke, as if to answer his concern.

"Thanks, Harke. I think we won't really need any more operation, since the jack-in point is pretty close by," he mentioned.

"I'm sticking around," said Harke, reclining in his chair slightly. "Kind of curious to see what the place you two are going to is going to look like, you know?"

"Whatever it's going to be, it'll be miles better than what we saw the first time we went," said Eternalis, recalling the barren room that he had seen when he had been unintentionally pulled into Lyntael's PET for the first time. He looked down at the bottle in his hand; the earlier fight had been easy enough to get through, but there was a chance it had been damaged. Thankfully, a quick check didn't reveal any cracks or the like.

Looking up at the cloud, it seemed like the cloud had risen up slightly, such that his field of vision was a bit more obscured, and he wasn't able to see anything of the two that he had left up on the cloud.



Up on the cloud, Aurora's face lit up as she saw Lyntael join her on the cloud. As the Cloudiers received her electrical barrage, she met Lyntael's eye before she unleashed her own attack on the Canodumb turret. Down below, she could hear the distinct sounds of carnage as well, before it was replaced with the dim sound of rain. Her tense pose relaxed slowly while she exhaled in relief and smiled at Lyntael.

"That went better," she said. Looking down at the "precious cargo" in her hand, it seemed barely touched, as well. She walked over to Lyntael, waiting for her to power down from her attack. "All good on your end?" she asked.
The brief shudder of a cannon round passing into her barrier made Lyntael raise her free hand briefly as she attacked; the barrier crackled and slowed it, deflecting the shell and robbing it of the capacity to damage her directly. As her own blow landed, the empty shell glanced across her shoulder and spun her back around, making the girl grit her teeth and clutch at the point, holding back the reflexive recoil just long enough to ensure that none of her friends were close by, before the sphere of electrical energy burst loose. She swayed on her toes after the tension left her, a secondary pulse answering the rise in current as her body rapidly filled the void, then looked about to find Aurora close by. The sounds of combat had already faded and she heaved a couple of long, panted breaths before trying a nervous grin in response to the other woman's smile.

“I'm... Okay, I think... It's not too bad...” Another small ripple of sparks washed off her form a she took another breath, before Lyntael nodded to herself and then more clearly to Aurora to let her know she was safer to approach. “Is Eternalis okay? I thought he came up, but then I lost sight...”

Glancing about quickly, she moved with light, cautious steps to the edge of the cloud and peeked down, picking out the familiar shape of her friend, despite the steamy blue-on-blue setting. When he glanced upwards, another thought occurred and Lyntael quickly darted back from the edge again, one hand going by reflex to push her skirt down, even though it was as covering as it could manage to be already. Her eyes turned to the roll of towels in Aurora's grip. Lyntael bit her lip, eyeing it for an extra second. They were back on an open network now, and Aurora had been a fair distance away, even if it had only really been for a moment. She wouldn't really know if the integrity had held until they checked later, though. With another second or two to make herself relax, Lyntael shrugged; she was nearly home anyway. Better to stop fretting. Instead, she wandered back to stand closer to Aurora and stretched, enjoying the sun now that they were above the clouds and a fresh breeze was blowing. A thought occurred to her.

“Hey, call Eternalis up as well! It's not too far off, but if this holds up, I think I can do something fun!” Unconsciously she bounced on her toes a little as her glee latched onto the idea, eyes dancing with a hint of mischievous delight as she grinned at the other woman.

Provided the gooiest member of their party didn't take too long to arrive, Lyntael waved to him as he showed up, then skipped quickly to the edge of the cloud nearest the location she needed to get to. It felt like it was only a few more minutes of walking away, but maybe it could be quicker than that, and with less risk. She closed her eyes at the edge and focused, before the light breeze shifted around to their backs and began to pick up slowly. A small curl and bluster of wind encircled Lyntael herself, making her vest and skirt flare and flutter as she concentrated, but around the cloud they were on the breeze grew stronger, until the fluffy platform began to drift forward at a gradually increasing pace. the girl exhaled and opened her eyes, the small spiral of wind around her dying down as she turned back to face the others, smiling brightly. The main breeze continued to push them for an extra few moments before settling and leaving the cloud to drift forward at a fair pace on its own. Lyntael stretched her hands up and flexed her fingers, enjoying the wind and the sun, then relaxed and laughed.

“This is much better than running into viruses all over the place. I should get one of these to keep, hehe!” With another giggle, she dropped down to sit at the edge of the cloud, feet swinging, and waved for the others to join her.

“It'll only take a minute, I think... There... I can see the place where I arrived the first time” She pointed down at an angle as they approached the dilapidated bath clearing. “I think I did alright that time... I know I didn't really do much, exactly, but I did something useful, and I kept calm, and I didn't even get very close to over-doing it.” She rolled her shoulders a little and glanced between aurora and Eternalis. “You both work so quickly though. I don't think I'll ever be that fast.”

After a short few moments, the cloud began to pass over the place Lyntael needed, and she closed her eyes again, putting out a hand in front and drawing it in towards her chest to bring enough wind to counter the cloud's drift and bring it to a stop. The natural breeze started to move it very slowly again, but not enough to be an issue.

“It'll be smoothest if we're right on the point, so we should probably jump down. It looks clear down there, though... I can't see anything.” She glanced to Aurora with a questioning eyebrow; she knew the other woman had something that let her detect viruses from further out, so she waited for the all clear before hopping off the edge of the cloud with a small shove. A column of wind caught her as she dropped down neatly, the updraught slowing the fall and letting her land at the edge of one of the neglected pools. Once they were all at the right spot, Lyntael clasped her hands close to her chest and looked at the pair.

“Okay, so... It's really nothing too special or fancy. Not like anything you both did with your home, but I just made something that was nice, and, um, cosy, you know? So... don't, um, don't expect too much, okay?” The warning given, and once everyone was ready to depart, she took a hand each and focused for another moment, closing her eyes as she found and accessed the emulation point that was still active. After a second or two more, the faltering, unstable light beam retrieved them.

----------
((Lyntael, returning to => Her Home))
"Yeah, it sounds like you're getting used to it, at least," replied Aurora with a wry smile. For better or for worse, she thought. Upon Lyntael's request, she brought up the data display on her visor, and saw that Eternalis's stats were reporting all green, as per usual. "Seems fine to me," she reported. Through it, she saw Lyntael peek over the edge of the cloud, and raised an eyebrow. They weren't all that high up, were they?

Joining her at the edge, however, confirmed otherwise--it seemed like the cloud had drifted upwards after their battle. Perhaps it was returning to its "normal" function without any viruses to hijack it. It was a fair distance down now, and she wasn't sure if she would be able to make the jump down. She spotted Eternalis on the ground, who waved to them in acknowledgement. Of course, she thought, she could just return by the way she came. Lyntael seemed to have some related idea as well, calling to her to ask Eternalis to join them up on the cloud. It probably wasn't related to heading back down, so she wondered what exactly it was.

Curious, she nodded. "All right," she said. Opening a communication link to Eternalis, the familiar video feed window opened at her side, next to Harke's.

"How's the weather up there?" his voice chimed in, a wide grin showing through the feed.

"Lovely. Why don't you join us up here? Lyntael seems to want to do something. Not sure what exactly, though," she said.

"Sounds interesting," he replied. In response, the feed immediately cut out. She then heard a light "puff" from behind her, accompanied by a loud "Touchdown!" announcement, with none other than Eternalis being its source. Standing up from a crouch after landing from a mid-air materialization, Eternalis caused the cloud to bounce subtly from Eternalis's landing, but other than that, it seemed to be stable enough.

"Hey! So, what am I here for?" he waved cheerfully to the two. Aurora shrugged wordlessly with a smile, gesturing over to Lyntael.

His question was eventually answered, as Lyntael manipulated the cloud to carry them to their destination, virus-free. Sounds of wonderment were raised from Eternalis and Aurora as they looked around at their surroundings drifting past below them.

"I don't know, maybe you could do more of this wind thing in battle, instead of using electricity," commented Harke, in reply to Lyntael's self-evaluation of the recent battle.

"Yeah, wind's pretty powerful when it gets stronger. I'll bet you can do a lot with this level of control," agreed Eternalis. Aurora nodded in agreement as well, but busied herself with scouting out the area that they were passing through for viruses. Thankfully, it didn't seem like there were any airborne viruses around the area, and they reached their destination safely as the cloud slowly came to a stop. Lyntael herself seemed to want her for something, though, and she blinked a few times before she realized what it was.

"Oh! Yeah, it's all clear on my end, too. Let's head back down," said Aurora, before Lyntael took the lead going down. She turned towards Eternalis, who was already ready with an overly proper-looking pose, with hand outstretched. She giggled, and gingerly took Eternalis's hand in turn. Clutching the items they had, they both ported their way down to ground zero.

The landing was less dramatic than Eternalis's earlier entrance as they met with Lyntael, who was still somewhat apprehensive about the condition of her own home. "Lead the way," grinned Eternalis, holding out the bottle in his hand, with his action mirrored by Aurora holding up the towels in hers. As Lyntael took their hands in hers, they both closed their eyes, bracing for the transfer that would follow.

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{Lyntael, Eternalis & Aurora GET: +2 Mutual FXP}