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[Log] Riding the Chariot

WHO: Nikolai (NPCed by Aigis), Rumika Shiratori, Kyrie (NPCed by Tohru Adachi), Yosuke Hanamura
WHEN: Saturday, July 3, 2009, during the Dark Hour
WHERE: A parking garage in Port Island
WHAT: The NWO is after an Arcana Shadow from Port Island, with intent to capture. They employ the help of the mysterious Kyrie, who seems to be a Shadow-Possessed with connections to Inaba. Yosuke stumbles across the scene and promptly gets invited along for the ride. The start of a player TP arc.
WATCH FOR: ...uhhhhh, you'll know it when you see it.
NOTES: Rated R for foul language and psychological torture.



The Chariot Arcana Shadow--though it is hardly known as such to the big dogs at the NWO--has been spotted mulling about in a Parking Garage located in Port Island, where it's been feasting on humans and inflicting them with Apathy Syndrome. However EVEN SO, it hasn't quite gone on the huge rampage that usually preceeds a case of Apathy Syndrome but it's gearing up to. It's the best time to try and seize it. If apathy syndrome cases increase, people might wonder about a sudden drop of Apathy Syndrome cases.
BEFORE THE DARK HOUR
Rumika Shiratori has been assigned to guard and protect Nikolai, Head Researcher of SEBEC and, well, he's actually a fairly friendly guy though clearly one to bouts of depression and he often is seen taking prozac pills in an attempt to alleviate his mood. He ARRIVED via an unmarked truck that carries the Shadow Capturing Device in the back. It is rather large and is full of fancy dials and crap that Rumika cannot really make heads or tails of, there is a big glass cylinder (or it looks to be glass anyway) hooked up to the machine which seems to be where the Shadow is supposed to go.
"He's not here yet." Nikolai tells Rumika in the driver's seat, "We'll wait inside until the Dark Hour, and then we'll wheel this out whlie we wait for the Shadow. Hopefully Kyrie will come by ... It's a dangerous Shadow, after all." He shudders visibly and adds, "Do not worry, this technology is Dark Hour capable."
TICK. TICK. DOOOOOONG. THE DARK HOUR.
It comes suddenly, the sky turning green, blood can be seen dripping and hanging off of portions of the Parking Garage (they parked in the middle). Nikolai is methodical and professional, already working on wheeling out his unusual device to get it into position even though the monster has not appeared yet.



Cannot make heads or tails of indeed. Rumika is somewhat at a loss for how this device is supposed to capture a Shadow -- luckily, however, she is not tasked with having any idea of how it works. She only needs to prevent it from being broken. And prevent this /suspiciously friendly/ guy from being broken also. Possibly in that order depending on how expensive the machine may or may not be. Either way, there is naught for her to do but wait for Nikolai to set up his device -- and quietly hope that there will be back up. She brings a hand up to scratch at the back of her head nervously a few times, switching between eyeing Nikolai suspiciously and looking around. Hopefully she was actually brought here to protect him and not to be some kind of bait for his device, given how he's all.. ~non cold~ to her.



Is this it?
No, seriously. Is this it? Kyrie has been waiting somewhere discreet where he'd be able to watch this parking lot, waiting for a) the NWO agents and b) the Dark Hour to arrive. The actual arrival is... pretty underwhelming. He rolls his golden eyes. No wonder Kandori told him he could 'lead' the mission. Nikolai or no, it's not much of a fucking mission, is it? And here, when Kandori had gotten in touch with him, Kyrie had been really looking /forward/ to it. It'd be something to put his mind to, to stretch his claws. To not think about the things he really doesn't want to think about.
Well, whatever. The Dark Hour hits, streets turn to blood, sky turns sickly green, time dilates, etc. etc. etc. He drops down to ground level and prowls out from the shadows into view, under the golden moonlight. It's getting pretty close to full...
"If this is all you got, you're going to get ripped apart," is his way of saying 'hello' to Nikolai. Eyes flick towards Rumika, who apparently is wearing a mask as well. Even without the benefit of facial recognition, Kyrie can tell she's a woman (recent relevatory near-misses aside), which means-- "At *least* tell me this bitch is some kind of murder machine."



Yosuke Hanamura is a man who is also on a mission. His personal mission: Shake down SEES.
They're sassy, for one, but more specifically they might know how to reverse shadow-possession, and right now he needs to be the star to regain FAVOR in the eyes of hte KDA, as far as he's concerned. He also thought ahead, very well; he borrowed (It's cool, he asked his dad) one of the cheaper GPS units from Junes in order to find his way around the city and to the school.

He realized, a few hours later, that the GPS was clearly functioning off of a staggeringly incorrect map. He is well aware, for instance, even without the GPS, of few things.
1) Gekkoukan high school is not three hundred meters off the surface of the earth.
2) Hot dog stores are not generally found in the middle of the ocean.
3) SEES does not have a private parking garage base.

Of course, as much as he'd like to just throw the damn machine out, he can't. What's worse, he's gone and stuck himself into the Dark Hour, which--well, it's one hour. He can fight off Shadows for one hour WHY ARE PEOPLE MOVING OH MY GOD.

He hides behind a nearby bus stop as there are moving people and some kind of machine near this parking garage. What in god's name is going on?

He's probably visible, of course, just somewhat hidden.



Nikolai is an older man, with grey, almost white hair, and while he seems to be able to move about during the Dark Hour, he isn't exactly showing off a Persona. Whether he has one or not is a mystery, but he doesn't seem surprised to NOT be a coffin. In terms of expense, Nikolai's wimpitude is largely offset by his genius--Kandori would be rather displeased if he met an untimely end today--and it's ultimately on Rumika right now to ensure that he doesn't get ripped apart. He's fragile looking, he will probably be drawing shadows over, though it's not immediate. He wheels out the machine and--freezes in place as he hears someone else talking. he spins around and looks towards the Shadow Possessed(?) with a mix between fascination and horror. "W, well we do not know how dangerous this Shadow is and we're really on a tight run right here, Mister, ah, Kyrie and--some of our operatives are MIA." Probably referring to Minagi here. "But I've heard very good things about our little friend," He refrains from using the name, never know when people are watching, and he's pretty sure Kyrie isn't a real name so that's okay. "If it becomes neccessary we can call for extraction b, but... Ah. Well." He looks to Rumika and smiles at her--he's always nice to the test subjects. "Just...let us know, alright? Sources indicate it's big heavy but slow, we'll need to weaken it first though ah, ah... If we don't, that is, Apathy Syndrome cases will rise astronomically. Ah, from the reports, that is, the studies are theoretical but sound."
He's so nervous he doesn't immediately see Yosuke. The shadows are starting to get agitated, but the Chariot has yet to make its appearance.



No shadows being drawn to Nikolai yet? Or.. ARE THEY!? Rumika doesn't spot Yosuke quite yet either, mostly because she whirls on her heels to look at Kyrie -- like a deer in headlights for a brief moment. Her hand quickly moves down to draw her Evoker -- she gets it up underneath her chin with her finger on the trigger by the time Nikolai speaks. She eases her finger off slowly -- this is.. the Shadow possessed they're going to be working with? Rumika stands there awkwardly for several moments, feeling quite selfconcious about how stupid she must look, almost drawing her Persona on an ally; she eases the tool down slowly and looks toward Kyrie with an awkward stare. "A-.. Aa.." She murmurs off, before bowing politely. "I'll do my best! I'm sure I can handle this!" She replies, closing her eyes and puffing some nervous breath behind the mask. At least Kyrie seemed to be honestly hostile and skeptical of her!



Minagi. Right. Missing operatives. Kyrie vaguely recalls hearing about that, and wasn't there a post on the SEES board about them having captured some Shadow-Possessed with that name? Well... not that he really gave a shit. Their problem, not his.
"Whatever," is Kyrie's ultimate judgement, though he does, to be fair, listen to Nikolai from beginning to end. 'Leadership,' huh--so Kandori's *really* feeling out his abilities here, huh? Well, it shouldn't be too much of a challenge. His sensory abilities haven't been in practice much lately, given as Kyrie's been working on--*other* projects, let's say--but he's not worried. (Whether or not he *should* worry is another story.)
"Doesn't feel like it's up and about right now, in any case," he continues, regarding Rumika again as she pulls an Evoker under her chin. Huh. That's odd. The NWO has those too? Well, no, okay, sure. That makes sense. SEBEC and the Kirijo Group. Kyrie already knows they have a link. Maybe he ought to ask Titsuru sometime who actually developed those things for them, now that he's actually wondering. That confirms one thing about this girl, though, especially since he recognizes her voice...
"You're not here to talk, girl," he tells her bluntly (and thus Rumika is instantly wooed), before turning his regard in the direction of some motion. That motion is a boy hiding behind a bus stop sign, and that kid is...
Oh, you're fucking kidding.
No, no. It's still cool. He knows how he can deal with this. He knows just how to throw the kid off-balance. *And* his buddies from SEBEC too! Win/win! Whether it's a good idea, he doesn't know and hasn't fully considered, but Kyrie does have a tendency to not always think things through.
"Yo! Hanamura! Long time no see!" he calls, warped voice rising to carry over to the boy from Junes, as if there is absolutely no reason for them to be on anything but great terms with each other. "I was just about to go do something cool with these guys, you wanna come with?"
While Yosuke is inevitably still going 'what, /what/, WHAT' over this, he mutters to Nikolai and Rumika, low enough that Yosuke wouldn't be able to hear (and certainly he won't be able to read his lips), "Don't react to what I'm about to tell you. That kid over there--don't trust him, and don't say *anything* important around him. He's got a big fucking mouth."



Oh, okay, it's SEES. That explains ever--wait that's not
wait that's kyr--
what
Yosuke just...stammers a moment, coming out from behind the bus stop as he walks forward. "Y--yeah!" He calls back, trying to figure out why all of these people with masks aren't trying to kill him. Are...are Shadows /any/ good at deception? Is this a trap? Hanamura thinks about it as he walks closer, nervously edging towards the group.
"Yeah, it's..uh...it's...it's been a while!" He finally repeats, slowly pulling knives from his pocket. After all, if it's a trap, they'll just leap on him and try to kill him once he's within range, right? And if they don't, it's clearly not a trap. This is basic, unstoppable logic that has no flaw.

God it had better have no flaw or he's a dead man.



Nikolai is kind of bewildered. He's a genius but not, perhaps, one that is in the loop here. He seems to understand better once Kyrie explains since, of coures, Kyrie is an honest shadow. He is not as rough as Kyrie to Rumika however, "You certainly can but if we're lucky we won't even run into--"
THOOMP. THOOMP. VRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRTHOOOMP.
"...Could that be...?" Nikolai stammers, stumbling over to the machine and pulling levers and spinning dials. Don't talk to Yosuke, he thinks, or Kyrie will kill him. Don't tell him anything important. Just uh... just hope he won't die horribly? No, he has to say SOMETHING. He just can't say anything helpful.
"You need to get out of here--it's coming..."
THOOMP. THOOMP. VRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRTHOOMP! It's getting closer, sounds like it's coming from the next level up--but coming down towards this one.



Rumika is caught for a slight shock at the sudden blunt words -- she recoils a little, drawing her lips together tightly and sweatdropping. At least he's honest. Rumika can deal with honesty. It at least isn't making her feel paranoid or anything -- after a few moments of recoil, she steels herself a bit, and offers a firm, obedient nod. No talking! Not here to talk! But then Kyrie starts calling over.. Yosuke!?
Rumika tenses up faintly as she stares over toward the teen boy -- Kyrie's order to shut up suddenly becomes enormously easier to follow, given that it might get her in pretty huge trouble if she doesn't follow it, and not from the Shadow Possesed! She steps back a bit towaqrd Nikolai, glancing upward faintly as she starts hearing those heavy noises -- she keeps her wits about her, squeezing the grip of her Evoker and pulling it faintly to the ready. Her other hand moves back to pat at her waist, feeling at the hilt of her other weapon to reassure herself of it's presence, since.. well, it seems using it may come sooner rather than later.



Kyrie is totally honest. You can tell by his bluntness and his abrupt, abusive mannerisms. Would a liar be like that? :)
Good boy. Yosuke's heading on over this way, Nikolai's concentrating on the job he's doing and also clearly terrified of him. That pleases the Shadow man immensely. Ignoring anything Rumika might say for now, he instead cocks his head over towards the direction of the sound, which is also 'the drive to the second floor.'
"Hey, just in time," he drawls, hooking clawed thumbs into his longcoat pockets. Yosuke's already got his daggers out--smart move. "No, stick around," he says immediately after Nikolai tries to warn him away. "I mean, you may as well. After all, if you run... you'll die." He turns back impassively towards where the massive Shadow will arrive. It's odd, he can't get quite as good a sense of it as he did with that massive Shadow in Tartarus... well, whatever, now's not the time to think about it. It's right about to be in their faces, anyhow, so it's a totally moot point. Monstrous humor entering his voice, Kyrie continues, "Hope you hit a save point recently, Hanamura, because you basically just stumbled onto a random encounter boss fight. Man, don't you *hate* when games pull that shit?"



Hanamura spins a kunai in his hand idly as Kyrie speaks. What suspicion he had fades away as Kyrie returns to his previous jackass nature, but with an added 'hey, we're going to kill this guy' thing on top. This makes much more sense to Yosuke, as he looks to the other two.
"Yeah. Yeah. Tell you what. You can get me back my bike as thanks later, alright?" Hey. Hey, if Kyrie will /legitimately owe him a favor/, maybe Yosuke can take advantage of that. Right? Right!

His gaze moves to the masked girl with black hair, and for a moment, he--he stops. He has /seen/ that girl before, where on earth has he RIGHT there's a Shadow stop thinking about things.

"You know what? At this point in my life, seeing some kind of save point thing really wouldn't surprise me, Kyrie. Didn't know you were into busting Shadows."

His glance moves to the scientist, finally, with a chuckle. "Eh...eh, how bad could it be. This isn't my first time to the rodeo, but thanks for the warning."



"Ah well...be careful, young man." Nikolai says. He may be aware but he doesn't seem like he'll be much help. Well, unless whatever his technology is works. He mumbles something about this not being a game. There is one last set of THOOMP THOOMPS, and then a walking tank appears into view. That's right, it's a /walking tank/. It was a big bright yellow face on its underside and seems to move forward with halting steps.
It seems to size up the various Persona/shadow/human/whatevers in the room before flopping down on its treads. It vhrrrrooms loudly before charging forward. it seems intent INTENT to run over Yosuke Hanamura.
"K, keep it away from the machine!" Nikolai stammers, terrified--but perhaps not as terrified as he SHOULD be considering he has no means to defend himself. "If we can capture it, the cases of Apathy Syndrome should go down!"



Rumika stares at Yosuke for several excruciatingly long moments, sweatdropping -- d-.. does he recognize her!? Her nose scrunches a little and she grips at the hilt of her sickle -- is this.. going to end up like with the robot..?!
Luckily, everyone -- Rumika included -- is distracted by the arrival of the.. tank?! This is the first time Rumika has seen a Shadow that looks kind of like a machine before -- is it possessing the tank or something? Who knows. Either way, as the Shadow charges at Yosuke, Rumika lifts her Evoker and fires it in beneath her chin. The sound of shattering glass accompanies a flow of blue fog as her Persona manifests above her, a woman in drab, ragged clothing with a metal collar and chain around her throat -- soon a small flurry of wind dashes toward the surface of the tank like a bout of razors, trying to cut at the surface. But the surface is metal, so who knows how well that'll work..!?



Kyrie stares at Yosuke.
"What the fuck are you talking about? *I'm* doing *you* a favor, jackoff," he says plainly. "Whatever boring-ass shit you were doing two minutes ago, I'm sure it wasn't anywhere near as interesting as this. God, friends like you." Kyrie throws his arms up in disgust at Yosuke's /base ingratitude/. God!!
Hm, though. The way Yosuke stares at Rumika... He glances back and forth between them. They haven't met before, have they? God, he hopes not, Rumika is not discreet in the /slightest/. He himself saw several tells when they talked the other day about her true nature. Only someone as retarded as how he acts would've missed them.
"I'm into lots of things. Life's so *boring* otherwise. *You* know how it is," Kyrie drawls back, noting how Yosuke already picked up on his name as he liberally sprinkles hints to further assumptions on what he actually is. He must've heard Nikolai say it. Unexpectedly sharp... but then, the punk's no idiot. .../all/ the time.
"Look out, it's gonna run you over," he adds almost absently when the smiley-face walking tank Shadow (seriously, what the fuck, it's actually kind of amazing) tries to mow Yosuke down. Rumika shows some initiative and goes ahead to attack, sending wind swirling its way. Not a bad start, but still... Assuming a commanding undertone to his distorted drawl, Kyrie slides up next to Nikolai and declares, "Girl, circle around behind it before you hit it again, and keep it angled /away/ from Pops here. Hanamura, keep its attention in *front*."
...What, he's not gonna fight?



It's that fucking tank again.
No. No, wait. It's just a slightly different tank. Dead serious, how can there be more than one shadow based on a /ta-whoa!

Yosuke dives to the side, rolling away as it hopefully rolls right past him. Once he gets up, he rushes forward to try to catch up to it. At the very least, apparently he takes orders well in combat?

"...What? --Boring, you--oh for. You're doing *THAT* too, aren't y--never mind!" Yosuke will deal with Kunai no Kyrie later. Right now, he has a Shadow to tank. He settles for running directly in its way again, backing up as he concentrates for a brief moment.

"Alright, let's...make this *quick!*" Hahahahhe has been working on that line for a week now. In any case, his Persona, the familiar white-suited ninja frog, leaps up from behind him, swirling beneficial green winds of go fast around him...before the disco amphibian leaps over to Kyrie (HINT HINT YOU JERK) and then finally to THE MYSTERIOUS MASKED WOMAN HE HAS MET BEFORE.

God you know what he is probably Teddie
Only Teddie could be such a jackass and stand there while he's busy fighting.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura hits Yosuke Hanamura with his Masukukaja attack.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura has been healed.
COMBAT: The Agility Up status effect has been added to Yosuke Hanamura.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura hits you with his Masukukaja attack.
COMBAT: You have been healed for 0 points of damage.
COMBAT: The Agility Up status effect has been added.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura hits Rumika Shiratori with his Masukukaja attack.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori has been healed.
COMBAT: The Agility Up status effect has been added to Rumika Shiratori.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura has finished their turn.



Nikolai continues to work the machine.
The tank doesn't seem to be able to run Yosuke too well. It looks like his tank fighting practice might come in handy. This is, in a way, kind of like a more powerful and big version of that tank shadow he fought at Lucas's place. He might indeed be the most expert of the experts here in this situation. He provides some support magic, and the tank is ready to pull back but--well--it doesn't seem to register Adachi as an enemy, or at least it hasn't yet, and Rumika is certainly not going to give the machine a chance to think otherwise. Rumika unleashes some wind magic which works wonders, pushing and slamming the tank away so it can't just crush Yosuke underneath it's frame.
It chooses to improvise, at this point, and swings its turret around, firing off a couple shots for each human getting in its way.
"Calibrations, calibrations..." Nikolai mutters under his breath.
COMBAT: Aigis misses Rumika Shiratori with her Pierce Attack - Inbuilt Gun attack.
COMBAT: Aigis hits Yosuke Hanamura with her Pierce Attack - Inbuilt Gun attack.
COMBAT: Aigis has finished their turn.



Yosuke *would* take orders well, wouldn't he? And Kyrie would know. He's been watching him and his friends. Kyrie regards him for a moment, though, when he accuses him of doing 'that.' Exactly what's 'that' supposed to be? He'll let it drop for now, though; no point in giving anything away, least of all his own ignorance.
Oh, that's cute, he cast that spell on him too. Too bad it's not really going to do them much good. Kyrie glances at the work Nikolai's doing on the machine. "Tell me when it's ready," he mutters.
The massive Shadow fires off a couple of shots at Yosuke and Rumika, and ignores Nikolai and himself. Kyrie is not surprised by that; why bother with a fellow Shadow and a normal human when there's two Persona-Users right here? "Go, it missed, get behind it!" he snaps over Rumika's way once he sees how the attack goes.
Rumika takes a moment to look back toward Nikolai -- can she afford to put that much distance between them by getting behind..!? Still, she can't ignore the sudden barked orders -- with a gasp of surprise she tries to head to move around behind the tank. Rumika's eyebrows lift in surprise as she hears that turret firing in her general direction -- but the green swirl of Disco Frog Agility Buffs causes her to move a bit more quickly than normal, and she manages to outrun the Shadow's improperly lead shot.
Turning on her heels to face toward the tank once she's on the opposite side, Rumika quickly lifts her Evoker to fire on more, knitting her brow a bit -- another crash of glass sound and a mustering of blue fog, and soon her Persona is attacking once more. cubes of red energy surround the tank for a moment before smashing inward, trying to impact on the surface -- still, she isn't too certain if metal surfaces are the best chocie to attack like this..! Hahaha..
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori misses Aigis with her Eastern Impact attack.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori has finished their turn.



Yosuke does...not like the gun. No sir. He does not like having a bullet pressed into his ribcage, the boy flying back from the impact landing on the ground a couple times. This is /exactly/ like that time that smaller tank blew up Lucas's door, isn't it? God /damn/. Alright. Hanamura jumps to its feet, calling out to Rumika.

"Okay, I /think/ this is like that last Shad--don't punch it. Just. Whatever you do, don't bother trying to punch it. Anything else will work!"

That said, he calls out to Jiraiya again, continuing to run back and try to holds the Shadow's attention while the frog quickly sends blade-like waves of air at the tank. Because, you see, where punching fails, /really fast air/ works.

It's Persona Science, don't question.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura misses Aigis with his Garula attack.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura has finished their turn.



e, energy cubes?! nevertheless, this is one dodgey tank. It rears back up on its rear treads and bounces over the exploding cubes. You probably never expected to hear the word 'bounces' as a verb being utilized by the noun 'tank' and yet there it is.
Unfortunately, it waddles towards Yosuke as he starts casting his magic Garula, the wind nearly blows it off and onto its back--but it just doesn't seem to have as much of an impact as he'd like--perhaps this is one very determined tank.
It wobbles backwards, will it fall over?! WILL IT FALL OVER?!
No. It's going to tip back forward again and collapse down treads first towards Yosuke's body.
"Will do," Nikolai says, "But it still has to be weakened or it will resist the machine's pull--"
COMBAT: Aigis hits Yosuke Hanamura with her Vicious Strike attack.
COMBAT: Aigis has finished their turn.



Kyrie rolls his eyes when Rumika follows his orders, but fails to actually land a Persona-punch with red energy cubes. What was that, anyway? He's never seen it before. Kind of interesting, except for the part where it didn't work. "God, leave it to a woman to screw things up," he grouses aloud.
Not that Yosuke does much better, serving only to give the Shadow better leverage to /crush him/. The Shadow man watches impassively, then remarks, "It doesn't look like it's all that weak to wind."
Kyrie: super-helpful.
A glance back over at Nikolai when he responds. "Weakened, huh," he muses. He regards Yosuke and Rumika again, then the Shadow, then adds, "Try doing something *other* than wind this time. Fire, electricity, that kind of stuff. You *do* have other moves, right?"



Turning her head to look vaguely in Kyrie's direction, Rumika takes on an embarassed expression from behind her mask. "I-.." Something other than wind or strike element?! Ahahaha, you must be joking. She steels herself again, and scrunches her nose, holstering her Evoker for a moment -- she instead takes up her kusarigama, one hand holding the hilt of the scythe while the other takes hold of the weigh at the end of the chain. A faint dark green light briefly rolls over the weight before she allows it to slip down, the chain running through her fingers to give a bit of line -- she then begins to swing it, gaining momentum as the weight at the end pulls the chain taught. If it's not weak to their elements, then maybe.. maybe..?! She lets the chain loose, swinging the weight in to try to slam it into the rear of the tank.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori misses Aigis with her Air Rend Curse attack.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori has finished their turn.



Ridiculous! The...how is this tank doing so well this is UTTERLY RIDICULOUS!
Yosuke watches as the treads rise up, and suddenly, CRUSH! That's it! No more Yosuke. No mo--

There are some stirrings. There is a grunt. There is a heave. There is...a ninja disco frog.
In Yosuke's ideal world, he is about to turn into a whirling dervish of knives and hate underneath the tank while Jiraiya holds it up long enough for him to both do this and get out. It is going to look really cool. Kyrie is going to be like MAN I AM GOING TO STOP PRETENDING TO BE YOU IN SUMARU RIGHT NOW that was so cool, the girl with the Mask is going to I don't know, kiss him or something? And maybe Mitsuru will show up and--anyway.

Look, probably he'll just flail at it with his knife a bit and run for his life, but the guy is going to fantasize while he has the chance. He may /die/ here, man.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura hits Aigis with his Yosuke Special attack.
COMBAT: The Agility Down status effect has been added to Aigis.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura has finished their turn.



"Little one." Nikolai says, "Do not be fooled by its size. Large shadows often take big shapes in order to confuse their enemies--making them think it'll be an easy target when it's not." But even so, she strikes the rear of the tank--and it simply fails to damage it significantly, "It's almost ready, Mister Kyrie."
The Yosuke Special is not to be underestimated and it is well timed. The Persona manages to hold up the tank just long enough for it to crash down without squashing Yosuke into past--and soon he is ninja rushing the thing and cleaving into its treads with its blades, causing severe damage to its one method of mobility.
The Shadow shoots wildly into the air and a grenade falls down between the two Persona users--exploding! And then it rushes towards yosuke again, trying to bowl him over the old fashioned way!
Mitsuru Kirijo arrives from the SEES Co-Ed Dorm.
Mitsuru Kirijo has arrived.
COMBAT: Aigis misses Yosuke Hanamura with her Heat Wave attack.
COMBAT: Aigis critically hits Rumika Shiratori with her Heat Wave attack.
COMBAT: Aigis hits Yosuke Hanamura with her Swift Strike attack.
COMBAT: Aigis has finished their turn.



Kyrie sees Rumika. Kyrie sees Rumika fail. Fail, Rumika, fail. All he does in response is shake his head and make a small, clearly disappointed noise.
Yosuke, by contrast, actually looks a little cool. Not enough to make Kyrie go MAN I AM GOING TO STOP PRETENDING TO BE YOU IN SUMARU RIGHT NOW because, well, he's not doing that anyway, but hey, maybe Rumi will put out a little anyway later. Yosuke can dream.
He glances back at Nikolai when he says the device is almost ready. He eyeballs it up and down, then nods. He keeps his voice low when he replies, "Good. So..." Dramatic pause. "...how the hell is it supposed to work, anyway?"
Oh, hey, fireworks. That big Shadow is doing a number on Yosuke and Rumika. This isn't surprising either; Kyrie can sense how strong it is. They really might die, he reflects. That would be /awesome/. Of course, Kandori wouldn't be too happy, but there's really not much he can do. He only just set it up so that they'd be able to communicate; it's not (as Kyrie assumes in his arrogance) like Kandori could track him down.
"Hey, girl, cover for Hanamura more, he's taking a beating there," he calls. This is not because Kyrie likes Yosuke all that much (because he seriously doesn't), but he's a dude and Rumika's a bitch, and if he's got to make a choice, he'd rather see the bitch die first. Hm, on the other hand, Rumika *is* part of the company, and it's not like it wouldn't benefit him if Yosuke bit it... eh, what-the-hell-ever, he already made the command, he'll stand by it.



Rumika is totally not going to kiss Yosuke what no! She does, however, look pretty impressed as she watches him cut up the tank treads -- it sort of accentuates her own failings so far! She bites her lower lip, lowering her head a bit in shame as she listens to the commands ordered of her -- she makes a quiet noise as if to respond, but then simply nods her head a bit. No talking..! She remembered at least.
Of course, before she gets a chance to make herself stop looking like an idiot, she's.. well, make to look more like an idiot. That grenade fired certainly is much more toward her than Yosuke, and she cries out as her arm is smashed into by firey bits of shrapnel, bloodying it up a good bit -- she blinks back some tears before lifting her Evoker once more. Another flow of blue fog from the shot fired through her head -- does she summon another Persona? Well, no. She's really quite attached to the one she has, she possibly faintly creepy reasons! This time, however, the blast of force that suddenly slams toward the tank is much larger than the simple punch of before -- perhaps overwhelming force will work slightly better?
[OOC] Aigis says, "sorry rumi bros before hos"
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori hits Aigis with her Zandyne attack.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori has finished their turn.



Yosuke just is easier to run over than blow up. This is some kind of natural elemental thing. As the grenade is lobbed, he throws his knives at it in midair to try for a really awesome mid-air detonation. He's on a roll, see, and--

The two knives pretty much just sort of fly through the air awkwardly, Yosuke running back a few feet as they miss the grenade entirely. He /still/ can't throw knives properly, why does he even do it. Why does he /even do it/ he can't throw knives he is not even a ninja. On the upside, he's out of the range of the grenade, even if the MYSTERIOUS GIRL isn't. Unfortunate, but...well, she's still doing better than he is.

"Hey! Hey, I'm /fine/, thank you very much!" He calls back to his 'spotter'. Well, whatever. So the tank isn't very fond of wind strikes. He can deal. He has other options! Specifically, until he can /figure out where he threw his daggers/, he has that one--

"I don't believe I'm doing thi--FLAEMIS!" He calls out, as the frog is replaced by a simple towering column of flame behind me,

"...God, I don't know. What do you even do? Just /do/ a thing."

This is apparently enough to suit the Persona, who settles for spitting some fire at the Shadow.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura has activated Flaemis.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura hits Aigis with his Agi attack.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura has finished their turn.



Maybe, Nikolai thinks, he shouldn't automatically assume a test subject is ridiculously powerful just because they're a test subject. Test subjects usually be in the 'barely controlled ultimate power' territory. She has a Persona which makes her, in some ways, Maki's superior subject. But she couldn't power the DEVA System, and that is why SEBEC actually cares if she is harmed--Persona Users are special, but it's unique traits that make SEBEC really chipper. People like Kagura and Maki don't get preferential treatment because they're more well liked, it's just that they are seen as Science Food. This has its disadvantages, of course, but it may be the only way to get multiple people in the NWO to worry about whether you live or die.
But probably not Kyrie.
The fire starts to heat up the tank which causes some of its metal frame to melt, but it rolls back sharply to try and open up some distance. It's getting the idea that these people are not the easy meat it was hoping for. Fire boinks off its frame even as OVERWHELMING POWER slams into the tank so hard that it actually flips around in a circular motion and lands on its back. HELPLESS!!
No wait, the cannon is still pointed, and the blast has pushed it so far back that it can actually fire at both Rumika AND Yosuke.
"It's ready!" Nikolai says, the machine starting to hum, electricity crackling around the glass casing. "But it has to be weakened--the more weakened it is, the more likely it will actually be pulled into a machine."
That's right, it's like a pokeball.
"Could you start exerting control over the other Shadow, Mister Kyrie..?" Nikolai guesses.
COMBAT: Aigis misses Rumika Shiratori with her Primal Force attack.
COMBAT: Aigis hits Yosuke Hanamura with her Primal Force attack.
COMBAT: Aigis has finished their turn.



"Oh, really?" Kyrie calls back at Yosuke when he insists he is TOTALLY FINE. He directs his voice back at Rumika. "Never mind, you can let him die!"
This is made /way more hilarious/ when the Shadow collapses from the energy cube assault and minor fire spell only to point cannons at both Yosuke and Rumika, and shoots the /hell/ out of the scion of Junes. His cackle reflects that, though at least Kyrie isn't laughing for so long that he fails to say anything. "It's on its back! Beat the shit out of it!"
Nikolai lets the Shadow man in on the fine news then, and he glances back at him. "It's still not hurt enough," he muses. "It's taken a beating, but it's not totally weak either. If those idiots can manage not to screw this up, it oughtta go better, but--hm?"
Kyrie stares hard at the scientist when he makes his 'request.' His shoulders straighten, and he leans over the other man a little. You might even say he's looming. "I could," he says simply, still staring hard.



Sh-She did it!? Rumika blasted that jerk to kingdom come!? A-apparently not quite enough, as she stares at the barrel aiming toward her and Yosuke now. She managed to.. well, give it a great position to hit them both. Fantastic. She dives to the side with a noise of surprise, managing to get out of the way barely -- she picks herself up just a little, glancing over toward Yosuke. Well, Kyrie /did/ say to let him die. Maybe she takes it a little too literally. Leaving the blasted Yosuke behind, she moves in to instead strike at the upheave'd tank's treads with her sickle -- it worked for Yosuke, maybe it'll work for her.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori misses Aigis with her Slash Attack - Kusarigama attack.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori has finished their turn.



So it's up to Yosuke Hanamura to save the day, huh.
Alright. Alright, he cna do this. Tha...that's his /job/, right? When you get down to it. It's his job to be
BLASTED ACROSS THE STREET?
Yosuke hits the concrete a few times as he's nailed directly in the stomach, dragging himself up with a groan. It puts him awfully close to the truck, actually, as 'putting the Shadow into the machine' is discussed. He moves to speak, but--no. No, right now, Kyrie could just kill him. No, Yosuke has just found a goldmine of information, and all he has to do to win everything, right now, is just obliterate that Shadow before they can suck it into the machine. Nobody told him specifically not to kill it...right? Right! Exactly.

"Alright....okay..." He steps to the left, and then to the right, trying to regain his balance. "Flaemis, I...I guess I won't say strictly I don't /like/, you, but we're clearly not a good match. But right now. Just...just /destroy that thing/!" He calls out, the column of flame spinning before flying directly towards the tank, the tower attempting to engulf it entirely.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura hits Aigis with his Tower Inferno attack.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura has finished their turn.



"It's definitely weakening." Nikolai says, "Just a bit more, and that should be enough." They don't theoretically have to WIN, just HURT. But there's a battle mastery in it for them if they do. ha ha ha just kidding, this isn't SRT.
Nevertheless, Yosuke is practically begging with Flaemis to KILL for him and that seems to be working. Maybe Flaemis likes someone who is kind of sassy. The inferno engulfs the tank, and there's a small explosion from within its frame which causes its trades to spin rapidly and, somehow, it rolls back up into the upright position--swooping forward and intending to collide into Yosuke--and then Rumika, it's cannon spinning back around to fire off an additional shot for disco frog utilizer. This may be problematic for Rumika who has decided to charge the tank with a melee weapon.
"Ah, well, then..." He stammers, letting it just...hang there. He doesn't have the balls to ask again.
COMBAT: Aigis misses Yosuke Hanamura with her Kill Rush attack.
COMBAT: Aigis misses Rumika Shiratori with her Kill Rush attack.
COMBAT: Aigis misses Yosuke Hanamura with her Pierce Attack - Inbuilt Gun attack.
COMBAT: Aigis has finished their turn.



Rumika continues to make herself irrelevant. Kyrie regards her unfeelingly as she attempts to attack with a mundane weapon, then looks over at Yosuke as he gets blasted into the truck nearby. Hmm. He's pretty nearby... And as he told Nikolai and Rumika, they shouldn't trust Yosuke. Given what Kyrie did in Kurosawa's dungeon, Yosuke, who might've gotten conscripted into this, might try to screw things up... Well, whether he does it on purpose or not, he's talking about destroying the Shadow, which would be inconvenient. Nikolai doesn't have the balls or the brains to say 'please,' so Kyrie instead watches the tank Shadow.
Watches it fail it *too*, that is. He rolls his eyes. Oh, come on. A flickering black aura wisps up around him subtly--not too much there, just a bit. One can see it if one looks closely, or if one is sensitive to things like that. It would be enough to get the CHARIOT's attention, most likely... not to mention draw out some of its own latent strength. Kyrie merely looks at the roller derby Shadow.
Then he jerks his head, just slightly, Yosuke's way.
COMBAT: You hit Aigis with your Rakukaja attack.
COMBAT: Aigis has been healed.
COMBAT: The Strength Up status effect has been added to Aigis.
COMBAT: Tohru Adachi has finished their turn.
COMBAT: The Agility Up effect has expired.



If Rumika knew that Kyrie was trying to direct the Shadow toward Yosuke -- well, she might well go ahead and try to kill Yosuke too! Fortunately, noone told her -- and so she continues trying to weaken the Shadow further. Since her slashing attack failed to have any effect, she draws her Evoker once more -- only to sweatdrop as she's faced with a /charging tank/. She rolls out of the way and gets her clothes all filthy and disgusting on the parking lot ground -- picking herself up, she shakes her arm a bit. Gross!
Soon, however, she regains her compsure and once more summons her Persona with a firing of her Evoker beneath her chin -- the attack this time is relatively small blasts of force like the first attempt -- but many more of them, slamming along the ground as the pummeling rolls up toward the tank.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori hits Aigis with her Zanma attack.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori has finished their turn.



Yosuke is a very lucky kid. He's not dead yet, Rumika isn't too hurt, and the Shadow's about to bite it if he plays his cards right.

He just has to keep up not being a complete failure, which he regards as one of his personal weaknesses. He starts by, mostly, diving out of the way as the tank tries to run him over, and then he just manages to roll out of the way of the following cannon shot! That's two for two, he's quite happy to take that for what it is, and then--something is wrong. Something is very, very wrong.

That Shadow is aiming for him. This /was/ a trap of some kind. That's cool, though. That's cool. He's just going to have to finish this quickly. And for that, he's going to need his knives. --Oh. Hey. You know? He's a lucky guy, he's gone and rolled right by them. Pulling them into his hands, he stands between the truck and the Shadow. "Hey! HEY! YOU!" He says, calling out to the Chariot, realizing just what he can do here...

"God, was your original human some fat guy on a couch? You move like a sloth!" That said, Jiraiya comes out again, Yosuke leaping--probably higher into the air than really anyone ever should be able to, but he has the frog lifting him up with wind powers...as he seeks to drive both his knives into the top of the Tank, where it will be LEAST EXPECTING IT and probably it'll just shoot him out of the air but whatever.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura has activated Jiraiya.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura misses Aigis with his Brave Blade attack.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura has finished their turn.



Sometimes being a Fool Arcana gives you some benefits. Normally Shadows are kind of retarded and are like 'WOW I CAN HIT THIS GUY' and 'I WILL RANDOMLY ATTACK THIS TOO' and 'WOW' but being a Fool Arcana means you are innately capable of giving party members orders.
CHARIOT > ACT FREELY
*tinker tinker tinker*
CHARIOT > TARGET YOSUKE (use all SP)
Rumika is able to blast the tank so high up into the air that it goes flying! FLYING! It swirls around as it soars up up up, the frog knives just barely missing the tank as it swoops around in the air. Well it looks promising, it was nearly knocked up through the next level.
But then it levels its cannon towards Yosuke and fires a single solitary tank round at Yosuke-San.
And then it guides its body down in an attempt to crush him soon after. Perhaps it was Kyrie, perhaps it was Yosuke's sass.
Nikolai looks horrified.
COMBAT: Aigis hits Yosuke Hanamura with her Primal Force attack.
COMBAT: Aigis critically hits Yosuke Hanamura with her Vicious Strike attack.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura has been knocked out!
COMBAT: Aigis has finished their turn.



This works out well. :)
When Rumika fires more energy cubes at the Chariot, and Yosuke decides to get all sassy on the Shadow, and it consequently pours its fire on the Junes kid--really, that was well-timed!--Kyrie smiles behind his mask. Then, regardless of what happens to Yosuke, he pours on the juice, Shadow aura flaring. This is not empowerment now; this is 'establishing dominance.'
"You! Give it your best shot!" he snarls at Rumika, pointing her way. He swivels that clawed finger to Nikolai. "You! The second she hits, snag it! We'll deal with Hanamura later!"
And now he just has to wait for everything to unfold neatly as he uses his strength to attempt to momentarily petrify the other, injured Shadow. A moment, with those orders he handed out, is all he needs.



P-Pokemon get..!? Rumika spares a look over at Yosuke, but it is only that -- no more than a brief glance before she looks to the Shadow at the command of Kyrie. She once more draws her Evoker up, firing once more -- she's starting to become a bit tired with all of this Evoker usage, and she wobbles faintly where she stnads as she does -- and her Persona materializes above her in that spread of blue mist. Just as before, a large blast of green-ish light signifies the slam of invisible force toward the tank-like Shadow -- it smashes into the ground near the treads, trying to flip the monster over once more. Rumika's expression tenses up as she attacks -- she doesn't even look toward Yosuke again, being instead fully focused on completeing her mission as ordered.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori critically hits Aigis with her Zandyne attack.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori has finished their turn.



"HahahHAH! That's right, aim up here. I got you!"
Yosuke cries out, bringing out the knives to swing down, and...the cannon swivels, and he panics.
"Jirai--pull up! PULL UP RIGHT NOW BEFO--"
It turns out Jiraiya is not exactly a /jet plane/, but rather like a mediocre jet pack at times. Realizing he has brief moments left to possibly /live/, he...shifts his weight? How peculiar. In that peculiar, adrenaline-powered slowdown of time, he realizes one last thing. He can still ruin this. He can still ruin /all/ of this for these bastards.

He doesn't see what happens after the shot, things go rather frustratingly white as he smashes down to the ground. But if he's aimed it right, he'll be behind the truck. And maybe.

Just maybe.
That Shadow will be stupid enough to smash the truck on its way to him. If not, well, he'll just have to wait longer to punch Kyrie in the afterli--
Yosuke Hanamura falls unconscious!



The Chariot is taking heavy damage, the last Zanydyne actually blows off its treads and causes it to tumble over. In one universe, SEES would use this opportunity to finish it off--which would clearly be the best thing to do? Hilariously, that is not the case, but it probably isn't a very good idea to do what Nikolai is doing now, which is turning the Shadow Capture machine on as the tank skids across the ground and halts as Kyrie holds it in place--eldricht energies lance out and grab the tank, ripping the metal free and pulling on the globular mass of shadows that had been within it, pulling the writhing mass towards the bottle. It resists, it resists with everything it has.
But it's been beaten too much, and it is too weak, and once again the shadow is contained--much like it had always hated from the beginning. The black swirling essence spins and swirls across the glass case--but it doesn't seem able toeescape. Is it really glass?
"It is done." Nikolai says, though he doesn't sound too happy, "Ah, that boy--is he..."



Yosuke is down like he ain't clowning aroun'. Rumika, Kyrie finds, is dumb but nice and obedient. And Nikolai throws ~*~THE SWITCH~*~, which means Chariot is aaaaaall theirs. Kyrie doesn't have a damn clue what Kandori wants with this Shadow (though he intends on asking now that the deed's done), and takes a moment to observe it in its holding chamber before cocking his head over at Nikolai. He really doesn't sound too happy about that.
"You sure you're in the right job?" Kyrie asks, a little cryptically. Without waiting for an answer, he strolls on over to Yosuke's fallen body, then bends over it. ...yup, that's a rise and fall, he's still breathing. Kyrie straightens up and glances over his shoulder.
"He's just unconscious," he calls back. "Girl, over here. There's some things I need you to do." Now, to see just how well she can follow instructions. The Shadow man glances around to see if he can spot Yosuke's knives. ...over there, clattered on the floor where Chariot had been. Looks like they didn't get sucked in too. Now, do they have anything to use for binding...? He muses on that for a moment, then looks critically at Yosuke's clothes.
:)
"Okay. You worry about the Shadow, we'll take care of this," Kyrie calls to Nikolai. "Girl, get those knives of his, and bring 'em over here. Next, take off his clothes." A second to muse, and he adds, "Leave his drawers. You're going to bind his hands and feet with his shirt and pants. I don't care what you do with the shoes, toss 'em somewhere. Now, you have Nigi Mitama summoned into your soul? You should be able to, it's cheap and easy, like a thousand-yen prostitute."
A gesture over at Yosuke. "Once you've got him tied up--arms behind his back--step on his back... Hmmm... Pull him up by his hair," he decides with relish, "and use Nigi Mitama to heal him back into consciousness. Just barely. Once he's starting to wake up, swap your Evoker for that chain blade thing, and hold the blade under his neck."
Kyrie beams at her. "*I'll* do the talking."



This is.. certainly new. Rumika's training had not involved torture and potential hostage taking! Still, she isn't about to complain or question the orders, especially from a big ol' Shadow possessed fellow. She scurries over, delicately taking up Yosuke's knives in her hands; she drops one near Kyrie as she passes and takes the other to begin shredding Yosuke's clothes into a form that can be used as bindings. She certainly looks rather awkward as she does this -- blushing behind the mask, luckily noone can see. This is awfully embarassing! Still, she dutifully gets his arms and legs bound together with the remains of the clothing, save for his underpants. Her hands quiver a little as she works. Uwah.
Once she's finished her initial task, Rumika brings a shoe up to plant on Yosuke's back -- she tries not to press too hard, but that's rather difficult to avoid doing after she grips into his hand with her hand, and pulls it back.. pressing hard is the only way to keep his head back taut! Her Evoker is then drawn and fired -- and soon Yosuke is surrounded in ~healing goodness~. Just enough ~healing goodness~ to get him concious but still in pain, as instructed -- it'd seem Rumika is not about to go doing Yosuke the favor of healing him more than she was exactly instructed, sadly. Not out of malice, of course!
After awakening the Yosuke, she reholsters her Evoker and then brings her sickle out to ease the curved blade in underneath his chin. "Ah-.. Is that all? Is there.. anything else, Mr. .. ah.." She murmurs off -- she'd be taking orders from this guy and she forgot his name. Fantastic. She also, after a few moments, realized that she spoke, and practically right behind Yosuke -- she clams up, sweatdropping.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori has activated Nigi Mitama.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori hits Yosuke Hanamura with her Recarm attack.
COMBAT: Yosuke Hanamura has been healed.
COMBAT: The Dekunda status effect has been added to Yosuke Hanamura.
COMBAT: Rumika Shiratori has finished their turn.



Well, it worked. Hanamura's not dead.
He stirs a bit, slowly, at the sound of a voice. He'd have something clever to say right now, he's kept a lot of them in mind just in case he's about to die, mostly because he keeps figuring he'll bite it sooner or later, but they've all faded right now, because--that voice. He knows that voice, and it--

...In fact, he heard it when he was...
...And then she-
--which means--

Yosuke Hanamura now has precisely two missions. One of these is harder than the other.
He is bound, with a knife to his neck, with a very angry Shadow who would not mind eviscerating him, in the middle of a horrible time full of shadows. He also appears to be naked, and may or may not have his weapons. Someone's boot is on his back, and all he has to do here is somehow convince them not to kill him, and then get home. That's all he has to do.

Secondly, he has to successfully not say a word of this to anyone until the exact right moment, and he'll be the goddamn hero for once.

Survive an impossible situation? Sure.
Shut up for a second? Ffffff.



"Take off his clothes!" Nikolai is scandalized, and so he rolls his mad science machine into the back without any complaint. He gives a worried look towards Yosuke, it was his foolishness to think that he would survive--the moment he was here, he was doomed. He doesn't come back out of the truck he doesn't want to see this horror.



Kyrie has not /quite/ trained in this either. But he has a twisted, malevolent mind, and he does so enjoy making people he hates suffer in humiliation. He waits patiently for Rumika to follow her orders, pleased to note that she doesn't complain and does what she's told without sassing. Her talking after healing Yosuke into consciousness earns her a sharp look, but she shuts up on her own, so he'll leave it be for now.
Of course, Kyrie has failed to take into account that Rumika and Yosuke have known each other, so if he recognizes her voice, he can trace her back to SEBEC, but that'll be their problem, not his, won't it? Kandori might even be happy to have something to /do/ instead of bureaucratic bullshit for once. For now, he's just overlooked it. A small thing, really. Just a little mistake.
Funny what kind of repercussions little mistakes can have.
"Hi," Kyrie says in a pleasant, almost friendly tone of voice as he haunches down in front of Yosuke, elbows on his knees. "How's it goin'?"



Yosuke coughs a bit, trying to pull his head up away from the knife. Ah. Feeling better now, room isn't quite swimming.

"Okay, yeah, you got me. I submit, you won." He'd throw up his hands if he could, but settles for an awkward shoulder movement. He's just...got to get left alone for a minute.

"...So, moral here, don't mess with you, right? Bit late for me to learn it, but I'll give you my thanks anyway."
Somewhere on the MUSH, Souji Seta has disconnected.



"Whenever someone as mouthy as you submits this easily," Kyrie muses aloud, gazing upwards as he narrows his eyes, "either they're really a puss, or they're figuring, 'All I gotta do here is survive, and all I gotta do to survive is say what this guy wants me to say.'"
He drops those golden eyes back towards Yosuke, and says nothing more.



"In my defense, Kyrie,"
Yosuke says, tilting his head a biiit that's too close to the knife, "All that /really/ came to mind were an awkward series of bondage jokes, and we're in mixed company. If you wanna sass back and forth a bit, sure, I'm cool with that." He chews a bit on the corner of his lip.

"Nah. You're not going to kill me, you made me watch this whole thing for a reason. Do I get to know what that was, or?"



Kyrie frowns behind his mask as Yosuke fails to at least outwardly show any fear. Then he looks up at Rumika.
"Cut his throat," he tells her as casually as if he'd asked her to pass him a beer.



Rumika stands -- er, well, sort of, half standing and half standing on Yosuke -- at the ready, gripping her kusarigama's hilt tightly in her fist. All she's really doing, of course, is staring down at the top of Yosuke's head. This is definitely a head of hair she's seen before! She does her best to try not to listen to the conversation too much -- but she suddenly hears the clear words of an order to her, that subtle change in pitch that directs to her instead of Yosuke. She blinks behind the mask, gripping her sickle a little tighter as if she were going to pull the blade across Yosuke's throat -- but in the end, she's never actually /physically murdered/ someone quite yet, much less someone she has talked to before and knows the name and face of. As a result, she hesitates, the sickle blade drawing back from Yosuke's throat just a little bit in a subtly unthreatening manner. "C-.. Cut it..?" She mumbles out in a somewhat pathetic tone, as if pretending she hadn't heard correctly.



Well. Okay. Yeah. There. There went his resolve. Yosuke's eyes widen as he suddenly panics, feeling like he's about to break his own back if he presses back any farther.
"OKAY!....okay...ju..just don't kill me, alright? I...what do you want me to do? Come on. You want me to do something for you, right? Is that what this is?" He's at the bargaining stage of that 'thing you can't deal with' thing, clearly, but...that tone of sass is clearly gone! This was not how it was supposed to go! Not how it goes in the movies.

"J..just name it, okay? Just..just don't kill me!"



That's /much/ more like it. Kyrie smiles behind his mask as Yosuke begs for his life. No. This lesson hasn't been ground in enough. Anyone could just immediately start begging, thinking that's the tack they need to take to keep from drying. If he started out with 'sass' and has gone straight to 'pleading,' well... He wants to make sure it's /sincere/.
He thus holds up a clawed hand to Rumika, a silent bid to hold on that. "I know you heard me right," he says patiently, otherwise ignoring Yosuke. "You're good at doing what you're told, but it's another thing entirely to actually kill someone, huh. You get scared. Hands start shaking. Palms start getting sweaty, heart starts racing. You get nervous. Unsure.
"And that's natural," he adds, tone utterly reasonable. "But it's also kinda funny. See, the way your hand's shaking, that blade keeps going back and forth, so you're actually *more* likely to cut his throat open just by accident than if you stayed coolheaded. Remote. And that sweaty palm... You're only holding Hanamura by his hair. What if your grip slipped? That'd solve that queasiness problem real quick! And if neither of that settles you down, well..."
He holds up a clawed finger and says cheerfully, "Even if you slice him open by accident, he's facing away from you, so all the blood will spray out this way instead, so you'll stay nice and clean!"



"T--the hell /are/ you/?!"
Yosuke demands, just staring at Kyrie.
"You...no. Not even Shadows are this ridiculous!" He looks--well, rolls his eyes in effort to /look behind him/. "L...look, don't kill me, Miss, okay? Just. ...Just don't kill me, alright? Come on." He's...strangely not stupid enough to call her by name, that /would/ end his life.



Somehow this seems like an INCORRECT SITUATION. Rumika, ally of Kyrie and willing to do all sorts of stuff at his bidding -- is the one quivering where she stands behind Yosuke, fearful under Kyrie's words. Shouldn't she be all gloating and evil and thuggish? Kyrie said she was probably going to cut Yosuke and make him bleed all over the place like a stuck pig. And Rumika is not one to disbelieve what people tell her. However, carving up Yosuke is a little too much for this little SEBEC experiment to handle quite yet -- and when Yosuke starts asking her not to cut him, she ends up dropping her weapon on the ground with a clang. "P.. Papa wouldn't ask me to kill someone." She murmurs, hanging her head in disgrace. At least, she's telling herself that. What he would do is anyone's guess.



Ah, and there we go. Kyrie figured the near tearful begging was just a tool for emotional manipulation. Yosuke learned from Mae, after all, didn't he? And whether the Yasogami student means 'ridiculous' as in 'terrifying' or 'laughable,' well... it's just an unfortunate way of phrasing things either way.
And then Rumika has to prove that she is, in fact, just a worthless woman after all when she responds to his pleading by dropping her weapon. At least she doesn't *release* him, the dumb bitch, and Kyrie merely looks up at her, then shakes his head as if deeply disappointed.
"That's a shame. Because, you see, you just did," he says in a perfectly reasonable, deliberate tone of voice. "I noticed earlier that the two of you acted like you recognized each other. Even if Hanamura couldn't be sure then, now that he's heard your voice, he must know exactly who you are. Real sloppy, that. Your papa'd be ashamed. And what this means is, Hanamura can't be allowed to live. I *told* you," and his tone takes on a complaining cast as he almost absently moves one clawed hand--the same hand that Yosuke saw punch through Shadow Osamu's back--to touch its tips to the beating pulses in the Junes scion's neck, "I /told/ you at the start you're not here to talk, but you didn't listen. Why does nobody ever listen?
"Anyway," he adds, meeting Yosuke's eyes, "honestly, I didn't need you for anything. I just wanted to see the look on your face when you died. Goodbye, Hanamura."
The pressure from those clawed fingertips spikes--and then vanishes when Kyrie draws his hand away and snaps his fingers with a resonant, metallic *click*. "Oh, wait, wait, that's *right*! There *is* /one/ thing." He leans his masked face in to Yosuke's ear, cupping the back of his head, under where Rumika is still gripping his hair, with his other hand. Gently. Like it's barely even there.
"Tell Souji," he whispers, "I'll be by."
Pat pat, playfully goes his hand, and Kyrie pulls away and stands up. "Pick up your weapon," he orders Rumika. "We're getting out of here." And he turns to stroll away, casually kicking Yosuke's kunai well out of reach as he does so.



MEANWHILE...
ohgodhe'scomingthisway, Nikolai thinks, and that poor girl. She's a test subject, of course she's not DISCIPLINED, oh god oh god oh god. But he's leaving the boy alive? Why is he leaving him alive? He should be dead.
And that only makes him more worried.

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