Journal of Sociology [S!6] - [Round Two: Ryburg Ritz]

Journal of Sociology [S!6] - [Round Two: Ryburg Ritz]
RE: Journal of Sociology [S!6] - [Round Two: Ryburg Ritz]
"Subject displays an irrational anger towards all around her, frequently blaming them for unrelated events and the affliction she suffers from. Throughout the first 'experiment'--"

Elise's voice cracked derisively as she pronounced the word. She scowled beneath her goggles, flipping the page. More of the Sociologist's diagnosis was on the other side. "--she has frequently resorted to violence," She didn't bother to finish the sentence, skimming through a scathing paragraph itemizing the aforementioned violence. "It is, therefore, my conclusion that the subject suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, as well as potentially borderline personality disord-- godsdamn how can you write this tripe?"

The alchemist crumpled the page. Her wrist almost flicked the ball into the fireplace of her makeshift camp, until she thought otherwise. She withdrew a vial of acid, uncorking it with an audible pop. The lime-green liquid ate through the page-- ink first, then the pulped fibers, until nothing remained. More permanent, Elise thought. Nothing left to recover. She scowled as the paper was devoured. Two days had been wasted gathering her bearings. She stood up, grabbing her most important items-- the crossbow and bolts, some alchemical flasks, a laundry list of items to scavenge, six doses of medicine. She needed to get moving again.

Boots scuffed against wood as she walked, pacing through the building she had hid in. When the city was alive, it might have been the sort of middle-class tenement she was used to, but with the city's death it was just another mausoleum. No one had bothered to loot its tomb-like rooms, not when there were mansions left unplundered. Was the Sociologist mocking her? Every step reminded her of the city she'd been stolen from-- the tomb apartments, the nobles quarantined in their mansions and waiting for the disease to run its course, the technological wonders left to rust. She pushed the thoughts of home away, focusing again on the immediate again as she set out.

Thick chemical ash still hung in the air as Elise stepped out onto the street. A clockwork carriage moved between the wreckage, gears clicking and steam hissing as it drove to a stop. The alchemist blinked. No one had been present in this quarter of the city. By the time her reflexes caught up and she had leveled her crossbow, three men had disembarked from the vehicle-- two guards, based on the uniforms and helmets and industrial steel swords. Their master moved in between them, an aristocrat adorned in pitch-black finery.

"Forgive me, my lady, but are you, ah, lost? There's only dead in this section of Ryburg." His almost-conversational tone carried the implication that Elise wasn't supposed to be here. He casually moved forward, examining the alchemist like she were some curiosity at an antique shop-- the weapon she wielded and the prospect of death it bore seemed to not perturb him. If anything, a hint of amusement crossed his face.

"The fuck do you want," Elise snapped back. She stopped shifting her aim, settling it between the noble's eyes. A half-mask covered part of her target's face-- she assumed it was a stylistic rendition of a skull, based on the jaw-like articulation and teeth on the lower portion.

"Now now, there's no need for hostilities," The aristocrat chided. He opened his hands out, in a mock display of surrender. The two guards advanced further, drawing their blades. "My name is Giscard du Lârillon. I am merely curious what someone might be doing in this part of the city."

Elise's grip tightened, stopping just short of squeezing the trigger.

"After all, we're so very far from anyone living."

Fuck this. Elise momentarily thought, as she resorted to violence.


"That wasn't very smart of you, was it?"

Elise wasn't bleeding, she had that much-- the noble had very clearly enunciated to his guards that they were to not use the bladed part of their swords. She was, however, heavily bruised, on her knees, suffering a broken eyepiece for her mask, and had both arms restrained behind her back by Giscard's escort. In retrospect, she should have expected they were disguised corpse golems, considering the black attire and the deliberate skull motif on the noble's accoutrements, but the thought hadn't crossed her mind. The alchemist forced herself to look up, to stare at the noble as he knelt and reveled in his victory.

Giscard examined her critically, eying each part of her ensemble now that she posed no threat. "Most individuals who act as, ah, rashly as you did last a minute against my guards, you know," He began. "It took them five to subdue you. I wonder why that is?"

"Fuck you," Elise swore. "Fuck you, you necr--"

"I prefer the term thanatologist," Giscard interrupted. "It's more, ah, modern, I would say. In the spirit of the times, perhaps." In a single motion he grabbed the alchemist's mask and tugged it off, somehow effortlessly. Leather straps snapped off, and for a moment the makeshift respirator's air-circulation hissed as its tubing was strained and abruptly disconnected.

Giscard surreptitiously loosened his collar as he took in what was now before him.

The alchemist was too shocked to release another stream of invective. Her gaze dropped, and she shifted uncomfortably in the hope that was somehow enough to escape notice. Even if she hadn't seen her face in however long it had been, she knew it was marred by the half-rotten skin and countless wounds her affliction had left unhealed. "Give it back," She mumbled, almost to herself.

Giscard waved his hand to the pair of corpse golems, who obediently released the alchemist and stepped back. He stood up, watching her scramble to re-attach the mask. "My lady, I must, ah, apologize, for my conduct." He finally offered, after a moment had passed and she had stood up and recollected herself. "Had I known of your beauty--"

He likes rutting corpses, Elise thought, assembling enough foresight to not outright accuse him of such.

"--I would never acted as I did. May I, ah, perhaps make it up to you? This night, at my mansion, perhaps?"

The alchemist looked away, but nodded a terse agreement-- she could renege on it later, she reasoned.

Giscard cracked a half-smile at the positive response, no matter how subdued. "Splendid! I'm having a function tonight among the surviving nobility, and it would be my delight to see you in attendance. My estate is the Chateau de Skullfucker, I doubt you will be unable to find it."

And, with a wave of his hand, he left-- his security and himself filed back into their carriage, and it steamed off across the rubble-strewn streets of Ryburg.

Elise stared at the ground, before picking up her crossbow once again. She was as stupid as the Sociologist's writing had not so subtly implied, she realized. She had repeatedly blundered into situations where violence was not a solution, or an adequate one. She had let her mind rot and deteriorate with every instance of anger and impatience. She needed allies, more than anything, now. Trying to take on the Sociologist-- and Giscard, and possibly even Nemo and Alberich, she needed to reevaluate her stance on them-- would require more than just a crossbow and whatever flimsy alchemy she could concoct.

The alchemist set off into the dead metropolis, away from the safe scavenging locales she had already plundered. It was time to accomplish something more than just survival.
RE: Journal of Sociology [S!6] - [Round Two: Ryburg Ritz]
A reserve at this point would be kind of unnecessary, so consider this a promise instead.

edit: yeah this post isn't happening. neither are any other posts from me. lmk when things really kick up around here and youd like me to continue writing.
[Image: 6xGo4ab.png][Image: sig.gif]
RE: Journal of Sociology [S!6] - [Round Two: Ryburg Ritz]
This was a mistake...

Walking down the dark and sprawling underground of the Ritz, Blake continuously went over the events that led to this in his head. He didn't really have a choice in the matter, at least if he wanted to keep his head clear...

Okay if you feel the wall on the left you should find a small path, go through there.

Flo's voice rang through Blake's head, and he lamented his now long lost peace.


"Alright so, how does this work exactly?"

"Okay so like, magic here just sorta flows, it takes a buncha shapes and whatever, and the point is people who are magic usually let magic out just like they breath out air. You don't."


"Even just hanging around magic people or magic peoples things can make you start pinging magic, even if you can't do it, which is why we haven't gotten anyone capable of going past their magic barriers, sending off some newbie sap would just be irresponsible."

"Okay, but-"

"You don't exhibit any magic, none, no matter how many hexes or spells we pop on ya."

"Wait wh-"

"Since you read clean, you should be able to pass through the barrier undetected enough that you can find the remote generator and let the rest of us through, got it?"

"How will I find it though?"

"We've got a magic map!"

"But... magic things can't pass through..."

"Unless they are directly on you, soooo, lean down a bit."

Blake did as he was told as Flo pulled out a marker out and drew on his face.

"Uhm... what was that about..."

"Walk a few meters that way and you'll see..."

Blake once more nodded and walked off, really wondering what sort of nonsense was on his face, why he was just going along with this, when he heard a ring in his head and a now very familiar voice said, Well, I guess I shoulda said you'll hear, huh? <3he<3he<3


Still, Blake soldiered on. While he didn't want to help these kids go on some revenge spree he couldn't really stop them and to his dismay, they had proved much more capable than he had ever been...

Blake sighed... but continued to follow the instructions towards the remote generator.

Okay, you should be nearing it soon, just a follow this path.

"So what am I supposed to do exactly?"

The remote generators aren't that tough, and they shouldn't be well guarded, between the plague taking down all of the people and the underground being an explorable mess without stuff like this map, they've got more important things to deal with.

"So what happens after we shut the generator down?"

We'll go through the barrier, and then you'll turn it back on, so they don't notice anything wrong. Then we meet up and make a small base to plan out the next move.

Blake nodded, these kids had planned this out, and they intended to take things as slowly as they could... Ughh.... What am I doing?

His mind full of concerns and worries, Blake still managed to make it to the remote generator. He gulped at the small cylindrical device with all of the wires and buttons and lights. How was he supposed to disable it?

Alright so find the power cable and just pull it out.

"The what? This thing has a power cable?"

Well... yeah, of course it does. Remember, the barrier is for both underground and above ground, before the plague they needed to let magical people through!

Blake looked over the generator and round a little lightning bolt symbol above a cable that was a big bigger than the other ones.

"Is this one it?"

Well, it has the power symbol on it, doesn't it?

"You know those things aren't cross-universal, right?"

Whatever... 9_9

Blake took a deep breath, and pulled the power cable. Just as he did so, he heard a set heavy footsteps, followed by other, less heavy, but more plentiful footsteps.

"We must recapture that robot, the nobles demand it of us!" Screamed out, what Blake supposed was one of the guards.

"Uhm... Flo..."

Don't worry, now that we're on the other side of the barrier, I can do all sorta stuff with our connection. >;)


Just lean on a wall and stand still.

"Uhm... sure..."

As Blake leaned back onto the wall, apprehensive and sincerely hoping that Flo wasn't going to just up and abandon him, the footsteps grew closer, and Blake closed his eyes in fear.

He felt something thump up against him, and then he heard the guards walk in... Looks like this is it...

"WHERE DID IT GO, THE MACHINE WAS RIGHT HERE!" "It must have slipped in through another path..." "I will have ALL OF YOUR HEADS, if you don't find that machine!" "Yes sir!!"


The guards cleared out, and Blake opened his eyes. It was clear. Had they somehow missed him? That didn't seem possible... and what happened to whatever they were chasing. And... what felt so heavy? Blake looked down and freaked out a little, albeit quietly, at the silvery metal body that had latched on to him.

"Hel-lo. Blake."