An Escort Mission!

Stepping off of the portal to the NetSquare, ViralMan looked at his immediate surroundings. "Yumland Net..." He shrugged. "Looks normal enough. Hey Zeo! I'm here!" the Navi called upwards. "What now?"

Zeo's face appeared on a screen a foot from ViralMan's face. "As of now, we're to turn on this beacon and wait for the client to find us. The reward for the mission is supposedly negotiable, but I'm not sure how much a mission like this would go for regularly."

"Wonderful." The Navi thought for a second. "Well, just turn on the beacon and we'll make things up as we go. And in the future, a little more warning would be nice!" ViralMan admonished his operator. After his outburst, the gray Navi proceeded to cross his arms and wait, taking his helmet off before doing so. Zeo smiled and chuckled quietly.

A few seconds later, he spoke again. "Alright, D. Beacon is active. Now we play the waiting game," the boy finished.

[D. Beacon activated]
As Zeo activated the D. Beacon, a foot long silver chalice materialized on the ground in front of Viralman. The chalice was intricately worked with gold leaf, creating a feather design along the round bowl of the cup. Within seconds of materializing, the chalice pulsed with a golden aura, sending a beam of light high into the sky. One could only assume that the client would see the beam and head to Viralman's location. Of course, anyone else could see the beam as well.

A few minutes passed and no one showed, not the client or anyone else. It was more than likely that the client would arrive soon enough, but what else could the light from the chalice bring down from the wilds of Yumland Net?

Terrain: 100% Grass with a few trees off to the left and right of the portal.

Left side
TreeA: 50
TreeC: 50

Right side
TreeD: 50
TreeE: 50
TreeF: 50
"Ugh, this is getting boring," ViralMan sighed, frustrated. "I hope the client gets here soon. As it stands, this blaring light is just going to get me attacked." The Navi walked forward to take a closer look at the chalice. A few minutes ago when it first appeared, he'd figured it wouldn't be around long enough for him to care about it. It seemed he was wrong.

It was certainly pretty, and the beam was pretty bright, so he could count on both the client and anything else to see it. No worries there. "Not touching it would also be a good idea," Zeo noted while ViralMan squatted down to stare at the cup. ViralMan nodded and reached towards the beam of light, stopping just before it. "Hmm...what are the odds touching it would be harmful?" he mused. "Better not to, I suppose. But then again, someone would have warned Zeo of anything harmful." Regardless, he decided not to interrupt the beam. Satisfied and bored of his investigation, the Navi backed away from the chalice and consulted Zeo.

"You're sure this is what we were supposed to do, right?" ViralMan asked. Zeo waved a hand dismissively. "Yes, I'm sure. Activate the beacon so she can find us." ViralMan blinked once, then responded. "So we're escorting a woman, then. I hadn't heard that until now, but it doesn't matter much." A few more minutes passed in silence. "Okay, that's it, I'm trying something," ViralMan said, exasperated. He walked up to the chalice again and considered what to do. Zeo watched without saying anything, wary of what could happen. Finally, ViralMan reached down and grabbed the chalice, pointing the light into the air and moving it around a bit.

"If this doesn't attract something, nothing will. I don't even care if it's viruses, we can earn money while we wait. I didn't come here to sit around," the Navi reasoned.

1. Boredom
2. Study chalice
3. Pick up chalice and move the light around
4. Dodge
ViralMan lifted the chalice, the silver and gold cup felt heavier than it looked but it came off the ground easily enough. The beam of golden light followed the lip of the cup, waving across the sky like the shaft of a high powered flashlight. ViralMan's examination didn't leave him with any new information and no one else came in sight of him. It seemed like whoever the client was, she was a long way off.

ViralMan's examination left the chalice at an odd angle and, as he moved the beacon, the shaft of light cut across the trees to the left of him. A muffled shout rose from within the branches of the trees and a green shape plummeted to the ground. It was a virus, a ninja clad in a green suit that matched the foliage of the trees. The virus was clutching its face, shaking its head and moaning to its self. It seemed like the light of the chalice had blinded the virus and caused it to loose its footing in the branches.

Two more shadowy figures dropped from the trees and pressed themselves against the bark, their forms partially concealed from ViralMan by the trees. The blinded virus attempted to launch a trio of daggers toward the Navi. ViralMan moved to dodge, dropping the chalice to land standing straight on the grass below, though he needn't have bothered. The virus' vision was still blurry and the daggers flew off in the distance a yard wide of the Navi.

A soft growl came from the trees from behind ViralMan and two more viruses emerged. These viruses resembled large teddy bears and padded forward cautiously. It seemed like they were more interested in the light from the chalice than anything else. ViralMan was flanked to each side by viruses and the Navi he was supposed to escort was still no where to be found.

GeninA: 60 [Blind'D!]
GeninB: 60 [Behind TreeB]
GeninC: 60 [Behind TreeC]
TeddyA: 100
TeddyB: 100

ViralMan: 120
D. Beacon: 100 [Shinin' Bright!]

Terrain: 100% Grass
Left Side - TreesA-C: 50
Right Side - TreesD-F: 50
"Hey look, something actually happened," ViralMan remarked with a light smile. Seconds later, his helmet materialized on his head, muffling his voice slightly. "Now then, to deal with these things while we wait."

"Watch what you're doing, if that chalice breaks, our client won't be able to find us," Zeo cautioned. "And those bears look interested in the thing. See if you can draw their attention away with this," he said, slotting in a chip. "BubbleStar. We got it in SciLab."

ViralMan watched as the space in front of him warped and a starfish-like creature appeared. It was a pale colour and outlined in pink. "What is this thing? It shoots bubbles? Well, alright," he resolved, grabbing the star by its sides and directing it at the Teddys. Just after he did, the star made a light popping noise as it released three bubbles. The bubbles floated lazily towards the viruses, but ViralMan wasn't sure they could accomplish anything at that speed. "Those things are going really slow, they might not make contact. Of course, they'll probably manage to get even more viruses after me..." He sighed. "All in the line of duty, I suppose. On to these green things." Zeo took that as a call for firepower and scanned through his battlechips.

Picking two out, he said, "I've got an idea. With these Heatshots, those things hiding behind the trees shouldn't be able to use it as cover."

"Sounds good. Send me one of them," ViralMan agreed.

"On the way," the op responded. "Keep an eye out for attacks, but I don't think that other virus will be doing anything at the moment." ViralMan looked at 'that other virus'. It was clutching its face and was most certainly down for the count. He could worry about it later. By now the first Heatshot had morphed onto his hand, so he jogged to his left towards the Genins behind the trees. He dropped to one knee, pointed his weapon and loosed a blast of flame towards one tree. Hopefully, the explosion would reach the virus hiding behind it. He looked at his other arm and found the next Heatshot already appearing on it. The Navi smirked. "So much for your trees," he said, firing the second Heatshot at the other virus' tree with the same intended result. His initial assault finished, ViralMan retreated to the chalice, ready to defend it. He hoped those bubbles had worked.

"I just noticed something," said Zeo. "The terrain around here is all grass, so those chips should do more damage."

"You're right," said ViralMan. "I guess it's a good thing the mission was in Yumland."

1. BubbleStar1 to TeddyA, TeddyB (20, three bubbles, trap for one turn)
2. Heatshot to TreeB and hiding GeninB (40, double damage)
3. Heatshot to TreeC and hiding GeninC (40, double damage)
4. Dodge/return to chalice
The two bearlike viruses seemed unconcerned as the bubbles approached them, their attention looked on the shining chalice. However, as the bubbles enveloped them and left them hovering above the ground, the bears began to growl menacingly. They weren't happy, not at all. ViralMan compounded his onslaught by sending two balls of flame into the tree line. The trees exploded into cinder, catching one of the ninjas in the blast. The other ninja staggered away from the flames and launched a trio of kunai at ViralMan. The Navi managed to dodge out of the way, but the distraction allowed the blinded virus the time it needed to scramble behind cover.

GeninA: 60 [Behind TreeA]
GeninC: 60
TeddyA: 80 [BUBBLE'D! PISS'D!]
TeddyB: 80 [BUBBLE'D! PISS'D!]

ViralMan: 120
D. Beacon: 100 [Shinin' Bright!]

Terrain: 75% Grass, 25% Normal
Left Side - TreesA: 50
Right Side - TreesD-F: 50
"Hey, the bubbles worked!" Zeo shouted with glee. "So much for them being slow!"

ViralMan grunted, dodging a kunai as he did. "Yes, they did their job. Now, shall we compound on their success?" the Navi asked.

"Definitely," Zeo replied, holding up a chip. He slid the chip into his PET and relayed the info to his Navi. "ElecReel1, coming your way. Being covering in a bubble ought to help conduct the electricity."

Turning towards the chalice and the Teddies, ViralMan held out an arm. "That's what I'm counting on." His arm was surrounded in light before reforming into a relatively large orange device. A claw-like object on the end of it crackled with electricity. ViralMan hefted the weapon and took a glance at the Genins to ensure he wasn't being attacked. To be safe, he moved a bit closer to the Teddies to give himself more time to react. "Those bears don't look too happy, so I hope this works..." the Navi said to himself. Pointing the ElecReel at the duo of bubble-covered bears, ViralMan shot a bolt of raging electricity at them. If it worked properly, it would chain itself between them and shock them even more due to the water. He didn't have time to worry about the results now, so he spun around to face the Genins again. "These things are fast, so we need something fast. A gun, or something like that."

"I have a better idea," Zeo revealed. "How about a fist?"

"As long as you mean FireHit, sure. I won't be hitting anything with this fist," the Navi noted, looking at his hand. "I'll get moving, send the chip while I do."

Following his own statement, ViralMan sprinted back towards the trees where the Genins remained. As he ran, his right hand clenched into a fist and burst into flame. "Okay, time to use the ranged punch!" ViralMan cried out, pulling back his fist. He jumped into the air several yards from the unconcealed Genin, acting like he was going to physically punch the virus. Instead, like he'd yelled, he punched downward in the virus' direction, creating a quick fist-shaped trail of flame to appear and strike at the Genin. ViralMan wasn't sure whether it was standing on grass at the moment since he'd burned some, but it should have done enough damage anyway. He backed up a bit on landing and studied the final virus' position behind the tree. "Shotgun isn't strong enough to delete it, even if it bypasses the tree. What now?"

Zeo smiled. "Simple. MarkCannon. I got it a little while ago in a trade."

"A trade in which you wasted upgrade money?" ViralMan remarked as Zeo sent the weapon.

The boy laughed. "I guess you could say that, but if this works, you aren't allowed to." ViralMan nodded and waited as his arm transformed into a fancier version of his old Cannon chip. It even featured a little sight to target things with. "It certainly looks nice, and it seems heavy duty. Let's give it a shot," the Navi said. Zeo wasn't sure whether that was a joke or not, but he left it alone. "Go for it," he encouraged his Navi. ViralMan pointed the cannon at the tree, quickly planning out an attack. "I have to shoot it before it can move away," he said. With that, he darted forward, diving through a gap in the trees and rolling when he hit the ground. Immediately after he thrust out his cannon arm and locked onto the Genin, firing the second he did so. Before even seeing whether he'd made contact, ViralMan rushed back through the trees to the chalice and resumed his protective vigil.

"I hope that's the end of it," the Navi said.

1. ElecReel1 to bubble'd Teddies (80, double damage due to bubbles)
2. FireHit1 to GeninC (60)
3. MarkCannon1 to GeninA (70, Lock-on, Seeking)
4. Dodge/return to chalice
ViralMan wiped out the remaining viruses with little trouble, mopping up the teddies before they could escape from their bubbles and finishing off the two ninjas with ease. The chalice continued to cast its beam of light, calling anyone who could see it toward its heavenly glow. ViralMan could make out the sounds of rustling in the glass behind him and what sounded like a faint shout off to his left.

GeninA: DEAD

ViralMan: 120
D. Beacon: 100 [Shinin' Bright!]

Terrain: 75% Grass, 25% Normal
Left Side - TreesA: 50
Right Side - TreesD-F: 50

Rewards: 850z
"Hey, looks like we got a bonus," said ViralMan happily, collecting the spoils. "I guess that really was worth it."

Zeo nodded. "Yeah, but a lot of other things could have happened from trying to attract things, and not all of them good. Wait, do you hear something?"

ViralMan whirled around, looking at the grassy area behind him. "Nothing there." He turned again as he heard a shout from a ways off. "I think something else might be coming soon. We have to be careful," the Navi concluded, keeping an eye on the chalice.

He alternated between casual glances at the rustling grass and in the direction the shout came from, wary of another attack. If the client was taking this long, they could certainly take a while longer. ViralMan placed a hand on his waist and continued to wait.
As ViralMan decided to...Stay exactly where he was, the rummaging behind him grew louder. Another squadron of viruses materialized from within the tree line; a trio of green garbed ninja similar to those that ViralMan had already defeated accompanied by a trio of viral swordsman. These viruses seemed intent on the Navi, ignoring the flaring beacon standing off to the side, with weapons drawn and at the ready. A second shout sounded and ViralMan could now make out a distant figure running toward his position.

GeninA: 60
GeninB: 60
GeninC: 60
ZemonA: 100
ZemonB: 100
ZemonC: 100

Figure: [2 turns away]

ViralMan: 120
D. Beacon: 100 [Shinin' Bright!]

Terrain: 65% Grass, 35% Normal
Left Side - TreesA: 50
Right Side - TreesD-F: 50
"Incoming!" ViralMan shouted to Zeo. "They're close together, send me something with some oomph!"

Zeo took a second to focus on the PET before nodding and displaying a chip. "It's more of those fast things. Let's see if we can slow them down, hmm?"

Holding up a hand in response, the Navi called back. "Right!" he yelled urgently, catching the appearing ball in the air. For a moment, ViralMan stood at odds with the group of viruses, staring them down. Zeo caught him sizing up the foe. "Obviously, they're fast. I wouldn't be surprised if they could teleport. Do it quickly," the boy said. ViralMan gave no sign of hearing it, but he set off right after, sprinting towards the group of blade-wielding viruses. Like usual, he wound up his throwing arm, the spherical explosive ready to go. A dozen feet from the viruses he jumped up and hurtled the bomb at the viruses, presumably stunning some of them. He'd have to worry about that later, as right now he needed to keep attacking. "Woah!" he cried out in surprise as a Guard popped up in front of him. ViralMan reflexively grabbed it as a Sword chip found a home on his unoccupied arm.

"Careful about how you throw those chips around, Zeo!" ViralMan complained.

Laughing, Zeo have his Navi a thumbs up. "Worked, didn't it? Anyways, there's someone coming, your choice whether you want to wait and see."

ViralMan didn't answer and moved his shield in front of his body, positioning the Sword behind him. He felt like a knight. Well, I could do without the giant shield... he thought. By now he'd already wasted enough time, so he strafed around the virus forces for a few seconds to plan an attack. Finally, he picked a Zemon and readied his Sword, pointing it threateningly towards the virus. He yelled a short battle cry before shifting his shield out of the way and running forward. He moved the Sword into a stabbing position as he neared the Zemon. Finally, ViralMan lunged forward and thrust the blade at the virus' side. After following through, he made a few short hops back to a safe distance (and the chalice) before readying his shield again to block oncoming attacks. "I hope that made a dent in the virus population," he said.

"Actually, considering how cautious you're being right now, I don't think you did too much. Whoever's coming is getting closer, though," Zeo said.

"Gee, thanks for the confidence boost," ViralMan scoffed under his breath.

1. MagBomb1 to ZemonA (30, Stun, Blast 2)
2. Guard (Reflects 60 damage)
3. Sword to ZemonB (80)
4. Dodge

((I apologize for the shorter post and over-cautiousness, but my snap decision to post tonight has left me with unforeseen distractions.))

((Sorry, work is a bastard. I'll mod tomorrow night, Friday at the absolute latest. Once again, sorry.))
ViralMan started off with a bang, lobbing a bomb into the midst of the approaching viruses. The explosive orb landed between one of the sword wielding viruses and one of the green clad ninjas. The bomb exploded, damaging the two. A surge of electricity run up the length of the sword wielding virus, stopping it in its tracks. The ninja barely managed to avoid the electrical surge and launched a trio of kunai. The first dagger smashed against ViralMan's shield, flashing back to score a clean slice across the ninja's chest. The second dagger seemed to sprout from ViralMan's shoulder while the third buried itself in the grass near the chalice.

The other two genin's ran for cover, hiding amongst the remaining trees. The swordsmen advanced, wielding their blades with deadly intent. ViralMan met the swordsmen head on, slicing one of the viruses across the chest. The Zemon attempted to counter with its own blade, but ViralMan dodged away with ease. However, his movements brought him closer to the second Zemon and the virus took the opportunity to deliver a devastating two hit combo.

"I'm coming!" the distant figure shouted.

ViralMan could make out the figure now, an lithe figure clad in medieval armor. The Navi was carrying a sword in its hands, prepared to aid ViralMan once it was in range.

GeninA: 60 [Behind tree D]
GeninB: 60 [Behind tree E]
GeninC: 20
ZemonA: 70 [Stun!]
ZemonB: 20
ZemonC: 100

Figure: [1 turn away]

ViralMan: 80
D. Beacon: 100 [Shinin' Bright!]

Terrain: 65% Grass, 35% Normal
Left Side - TreesA: 50
Right Side - TreesD-F: 50
"Agh!" ViralMan cried out in pain, hastily distancing himself from the Zemon. "Bastard..." he swore, reaching up and yanking the kunai out of his shoulder. "You picked the wrong guy to mess with."

"Looks like you've got backup on the way, so we don't have to go full tilt on these things. Try to carve up that last sword virus!" Zeo said enthusiastically.

"Right!" ViralMan called back, shifting his arm to the side. He advanced forward cautiously, ready to parry any slashes from the Zemons. "You might have a better chance from the air, but it's just a guess," Zeo added. With a nod, ViralMan dashed to the side of the viruses and pointed his Sword at them. He then took a few steps forward and sprang into the air, the Sword held high above him. At the apex of his jump, he yelled and angled himself at the undamaged Zemon. The descent might have taken him straight into the virus, but ViralMan swung his Sword directly downward at it with all of his might before retreating back on landing. "Zeo, how are those reinforcements coming along?" he asked, the Sword bursting into data and returning his arm to normal.

Zeo turned his view of the battle towards the oncoming Navi. "At least a minute or two, let's keep going. What should we use next?" He rummaged through his pocket. I need a more efficient method of chip storage, he thought. "Okay, we'll try this again. Hit that tree! Heatshot, slot in!" the boy shouted, doing so.

ViralMan stepped forward while the gun morphed onto his arm. "Wait, aren't you still at the tournament? Don't yell so loudly, or people will think you're weird..."

Whirling around, Zeo ensured no one was paying too much attention to his heated operation, then turned back. "I think we're okay now."

The Navi sighed. He'd have to talk to his operator about this act first, think later habit he was developing. However, now he had some viruses to burn. ViralMan ran forward, towards the trees the Genin hid behind. A direct shot was once again unlikely, but the explosion from the Heatshot would hopefully be enough to once again catch the enemy off guard. He stopped, bent his knees slightly and aimed the gun at one of the trees. He then placed his free hand on the weapon to steady his aim, and fired the Heatshot once he did that. The burst of flame rocketed at the tree, and would most likely destroy the tree at the very least. "Now that that's taken care of, can I get a Shotgun, Zeo?"

"Sure thing," Zeo responded, managing to find the chip on his second pull. "Coming your way. And so's that knight Navi."

To end his bout of delay tactics, ViralMan backed up from the trees and got some distance between himself and the group of viruses. He scanned the Zemons, locating the one he had stunned with his MagBomb. "Alright, that's as good a target as any," he reasoned, pointing his buster at the still figure. Since the virus was stunned, ViralMan took less time to aim before firing a yellow energy blast at the Zemon which could expand to him the really weak one. Once that was all over, he watched the other viruses for counterattacks and waited for the new Navi to arrive. He noticed that some of the ambient data floating around him flew to his shoulder, easing the pain. As he was about to ask Zeo about it, the boy explained.

"Oh, that's one of your new moves. That thing you suggested about having the particle effect heal you. It would have been working sooner, but I...forgot to activate it," Zeo admitted, embarrassed.


1. Sword to ZemonC (80)
2. Heatshot to TreeD, GeninA (40, chance of double damage)
3. Shotgun to ZemonA (50, Spread 1)
4. Dodge
-Passive: Data Absorption (+15 HP to self)
The injured Zemon lunged forward, blade flashing down in a wide arc. ViralMan leapt to the side, the sword missing him by a hair's breadth. The Navi ignored the virus, leaping toward its unharmed counterpart with sword held high. ViralMan's sword sliced through the air, scoring a clean hit to the shoulder of the viral swordsman. The virus countered with two strong blows of its own, cutting a shallow cross along the Navi's chest.

ViralMan fired an explosive fireball into the tree line, taking out a tree and one of the ninjas in one go. The other hidden ninja took the hint and dashed out from behind his cover, moving in an attempt to surround ViralMan. The injured Genin stood where it was, unsure on how to proceed with the only shelter being a deathtrap. ViralMan fired off his shotgun, catching the stunned Zemon full in the chest. The spreading pellets caught a second Zemon, deleting it where it stood with bloodied sword in hand.

ViralMan's body absorbed some of the data that swirled around him, sealing up one of the slashes that marred his form.

"Raaaaawr!" The sound was more of a growl than anything else, but it signaled the arrival of the armored Navi.

Now that the figure was close, ViralMan could see her clearly. It was a female Navi clad in what looked to be plate armor of the sort a medieval knight might wear. The armor was silver and worked with gold, the pauldrons worked to resemble golden feathers as though they would end in wings of gold. Golden feathers were also worked along the woman's gauntlets and vambraces and even along her greaves. A long blue cape hung from the woman's shoulders, billowing behind her as she charged. Her eyes were a deep blue and she had golden blonde hair cut short in a boyish style. She held a sword in both hands, the long, silvery blade over three feet long and the crosspiece was designed to look like golden wings. With a single strike of her sword, the woman cut down the remaining two Zemon.

"Hah," the woman panted. "I had hoped to arrive in time to prevent a virus attack. These are dangerous lands, friend, and evil stalks me like a shadow. Still, I am glad to see someone has answered my call. Shall we defeat these miscreants before more are drawn to the chalice?"

The Navi's sword took on a azure glow and she slashed her blade through the air with a horizontal slice. A wave of blue energy rippled across the battlefield, wiping out the two remaining viruses. She sheathed her sword in a leather scabbard that hung at her waist.

"I am called Dolce," she said. "May I know your name?"

GeninA: Deleted!
GeninB: Deleted!
GeninC: Deleted!
ZemonA: Deleted!
ZemonB: Deleted!
ZemonC: Deleted!

Dolce: 200

ViralMan: 65
D. Beacon: 100 [Shinin' Bright!]

Rewards: 300z
ViralMan took a few seconds to study the armored Navi that had just arrived. It was a woman, like he had expected. Something was strange about her, though. Of course, it wasn't every day you met an armor clad woman with a large sword, but that wasn't it. He wasn't quite sure what it was yet, so he elected to respond to her first. His helmet shimmered and disappeared, then he began to speak. "Dolce? Well, I am called ViralMan, and I suppose I'm here to assist you. It's a pleasure to meet you."

He paused. Now he noticed what was odd. Looking over at the remains of the battlefield, ViralMan recalled how Dolce had essentially strolled in and deleted everything. He was glad she was on his side, but that begged the question: why would she require an escort? Either there was another D person lurking around who required one, or there was something pretty dangerous somewhere along the way. There wasn't much point in trying to work it out now though, when he could just ask.

"I'm ready to go anytime, but I must ask: why do you need an escort? You seem perfectly capable of defending yourself, as I just witnessed," ViralMan said to Dolce inquisitively.
"Hardly," Dolce laughed, a sound like silver bells. "My mistress and I have a few finely honed blades at our disposal; however, they are nothing compared to the viral hordes that prowl in my wake. If not for your distraction, I doubt not that the viruses would have evaded my strike."

Now that ViralMan was closer and stress of battle diminishing, he could see that the Navi's armor wasn't as pristine as he had first thought. Dust marred the shine of the silver plate and a number of small dents scattered across the armor signaled that Dolce had recently seen battle. He cape was frayed at the edges and the fabric held a few small rips. The woman's cheeks were flushed and, despite her impressive display of combat prowess, she looked tired.

"I am truly glad that you have come," Dolce said as she gathered up the silver chalice and caused it to vanish it a flash of light. "I seem to have attracted unwanted attention and am in need to aid. What has the GNN told you of my plight?"
Upon being asked that, ViralMan thought back to when Zeo had randomly forced him on this mission, and realized he didn't know anything except what Zeo told him. He knew the boy had been listening these past few minutes, so he turned to his operator's viewscreen and gave him a meaningful look that said: What have they told us? Zeo shook his head, and ViralMan took that as an 'I don't know, they didn't say much'. In essence that was indeed what the boy had wanted to say.

Ad-libbing a bit, ViralMan promptly cobbled together a response that would sound better than a simple 'I don't know'. This whole exchange took place over about twenty seconds, but it was still a noticeable gap in the conversation, so ViralMan quickly replied. "Next to nothing. We were told of your request, given the beacon, and told to meet you here." A message flashed across the Navi's eye, since his helmet was absent. ViralMan blinked and added, "We were also told that we would be informed of the particulars of our duties by you, but nothing beyond that."
"Enigmatic as always," Dolce mused. "Well, I suppose that is fine. I have come to Yumland on a hunt of sorts. I have heard tales of a strange beasts that stalk the networks; powerful monsters that warp the very landscape around them. I believe that I have found a clue as to the existence of these rumored creatures and where they might be located; however, I have met with unexpected resistance."

The Navi reached behind her and pulled a small cloth sack from where it hung on her belt. She opened the sack and reached in to remove a palm sized, crimson item that resembled an arrow head. ViralMan couldn't tell what the thing was made of, but it looked very hard and glittered slightly as light reflected off of it. Dolce hefted the item, feeling its weight for a moment, before placing it back in the sack and tying the bag to her belt.

"That is what they want," Dolce said. "Though I know not what they would want with it. It is a scale from one of the creatures I mentioned, but by itself it has no use."

The Navi cocked her head as though she heard something, but she merely shrugged and turned back to ViralMan.

"I doubt they discussed the reward for this request either. Would zenny suffice? Or perhaps a BattleChip or some sort? Name it and, if it is within my power, it shall be yours." She cocked her head again. "But we are not safe out in the open. Come, we shall discuss your reward as we head to the NetSquare."

As the armored Navi strode toward the portal to the NetSquare, ViralMan caught a faint whistling sound. A metallic star zoomed out from within the tree line. The star struck the portal and emitted a wave of pulsating energy that disabled the device. The two Navi weren't going to reach the NetSquare without a fight.

"Damn," Dolce muttered. "They caught up with me. Quick, ViralMan, ready yourself. I fear we shall soon have a battle on our hands."
ViralMan stopped and listened intently to Dolce, trying to gather more information about the vague mission. It seemed his reply had been good enough; it was better that the client and partner in the mission didn't think of him as dull. He studied the red scale as Dolce held it, then returned his attention to her when she put it away. Scale from some kind of creature. I wonder if it's a type of rare virus? ViralMan thought, interested.

He noticed Dolce move her head slightly before shrugging. ViralMan hadn't noticed anything, but he didn't need any surprise attacks by the enemy so he elected to pay a bit more attention to his surroundings while talking.

On the mention of a reward, ViralMan immediately thought of zenny, but he knew blurting it out right there might make him seem only interested in the money. He could tell her once they got to the NetSquare. He nodded as she turned, then stiffened as a throwing star flew by and into the portal. He quickly realized that it would be a bit longer before they could discuss payment, but that was minor right now. ViralMan's helmet materialized onto his head as he whirled around towards the treeline, ready for a battle.

"Let's do this," the Navi said confidently.