Plort of Call
She's a Monster-Handling Musical Kung-Fu Nurse with an attention span problem and a drive to uncover the Truths of this World. He's a tower-pushing Necromancer with a passion for the local watering holes and an ever growing menagerie of monters that are either canine or made of bones.
Together, they fight crime!
Well, 'breed slimes', actually. But it doesn't sound as cool...
Uta's strange mood is over.
After making sure that she got all her business in order in Yamato with a few stops at the Slime Labs, Eas, and other places, she is now on her way to the Palace Lands, where her contacts with Scale await her to discover more about the Lander-Adventurer war.
She has recently disembarked from the ship that took her from Carmina Gadelica Marina to the last port before the long, one-week trip back to the new continent. She walks through the crowded port as if in a trance, unresponsive to the loud peddling of the fishmongers, and the smell of their merchandise. Even the colorful hustle and bustle of humanity seems lost on her, as she just proceeds on autopilot, even as a few people bump into her.
Setsuna walks through the port with a limp, his new leg is quite stiff as if he hasn't moved it in a while. His entourage of monsters is missing and he appears to be in jogging or workout gear. " So you are off to the palace lands? Trying to get more bomb slimes for the lab? Didn't that last one almost take down the back wall?" There are question as he looks as he looks at the boat then over at Uta.
It doesn't matter whether Setsuna just appeared or has been following Uta since she left the Slime Labs. That wouldn't change Uta's statement.
"Exploding Slimes," Uta corrects. "And that is exactly why we needed to have a hole dug off site. So it can explode in peace without... ah... putting a strain on my relations with Rylen."
Uta rubs her head, "No, no, not getting more bombs until we have some means to be safe from sulphur exposure. This is about our continent-wide research about the Lander-Adventurer war. I'm sure Doctor Prophylaxis must have told you about it."
Setsuna contemplates the topic for a moment, " The Lander-adventrer war. Heard that mentioned a few time, this is whatever happened in the palace lands right?" Pondering for a moment he remembers, " Oh yeah I remember him droning on and on about that a bit ago. I will admit he is not the best presenter, so I may have dozed off a bit. " There is a sound of guilt as he walks over to the edge of the pier and has a seat , dangling his feet above the water. Taking a moment he looks at Uta before adding, " Well if you want to fill me in I will trade you about spider demon god thingy. That was fun times. Also maybe some song stuff, speaking of how did all that go? The singing gig ? You left a note one day bout wanting to become Yamatos top idol?"
People who know Uta, at this point, will have noticed that even in everyday speech, Uta's vocal technique has improved, making her voice somehow slightly more pleasant and melodious, but not because she suddenly has a different voice. It's just.. used better.
"And about the Lander-Adventurer war, we don't have much, yet." Uta mumbles, looking down and away. "Just as we were getting started, I got hit by my Strange Mood. Now we have a few weeks of lost work to catch up to." Looking even further down, and mumbling in an even lower tone.
"In any case, I'm not going to be caught unprepared." She flicks one finger, and shimmers a notebook into existence. "I am preparing a dossier about everything I have found out in the Palace Lands. I was planning to share the information with my Alliance, to seek help from other people and compile as much data as we have about this wonderful and mysterious new continent..." She gives a sideways glance. "...and their rather suspicious people." She shakes her head. "Anyway, I've already shared some information on channel, might as well compile it in a nice, exhaustive way and make it available to anyone in our Alliance interested in researching it."
When Schneider approaches, Uta waves at him. "Oh, right, Schneider! Hi!" Uta flicks her menu open, and with a shimmer, materializes a rolled up piece of paper. "Here, this is the map to the Exploding Slime's pit," she says, as she hands the piece of paper to Setsuna. "Feel free to show it to Schneider, but make sure the slime doesn't get killed. We have only one."
There is a pause. "Wait, spider demon god!? Song stuff?" She leans in. "Tell me all about it."
Setsuna looks up over at Schneider, " You know there is more to life then explosions. In fact there is a lot more to life then explosions. " Looking back at Uta and nods his head before he gets back to teasing Uta, " I am sure the conservatory will help you become Yamatos Top Idol, don't worry I support this. " With a grin that would make imps jealous on his face he chuckles for good measure just to make sure it is obvious he is teasing. Finally he heaarss about the war and adds , " I look forward to reading it, has to be tter then Prophylaxis , I swear that guy has to take time to work on his performance skills. Learn to inflect or deflect or whatever to his tone. " Taking the map he looks over at Schneider before he begins to unroll the map. " Oh yeah the spider demon god thing, I can't remember if its a god or demon. Anyways we went to start a dialect, and that was fun. Yeah that monster wants nothing to do with us, but may over all be a good monster. At least from the way they talked to us. One of those you don't mess with us and I will leave you alone... except we kinda did. " Setsuna begins to fold the map into something.
"It is, indeed, a Palace Lands thing," Uta replies to Schneider. "We found out recently. And we need to find out more." She mumbles, "Based on my research, the Palace Landers weren't given any instructions during the Apocalypse. And it's not just that they did not see them because the Babel Tower is one week of travel away from Dol Dona, no. I checked, there was no holographic projection at all on the Tower." Uta crosses her arms and tilts her head down. "I don't have all the facts yet, but one can easily start forming expectations and fill in the gaps between 'Stranded Adventurers With No Goal' and 'Lander-Adventure War'"
"Oh, and apparently, the Babel Tower was built by the Alv to protect the Babylon Device. That's quite interesting, don't you agree? No mention of climbing, or the Keys of Twilight. And nothing about leaving the world. And as far as we know..." She taps her lips. "The Babylon Device is Alba's universal translation system. So... what's up with that tower?"
"The babel tower, " Setsuna blinks and supposes it makes sense, his current belief on this being is that the Alucard tower will be done after the tenth floor. So just figured the new tower would be in palace lands. Obviously it would mean waves there but it would be fine, as they wouldn't be split over here. Taking another moment as goes back to folding the map into a plane. " So then about the spider god, yeah apparently, we, adventurers of Yamato have released an evil unto the Palace Lands. Quarantine was really meant to keep things in Yamato not the rest of the world out. We released the scrapped princesses, the beast, and who knows what else was being contained here."
And Uta's singing is not to be come Yamato's Top Idol? "Do the Palace Lands even /have/ a top idol?" He doesn't know! As far as the Palace Landers not being given instructions at all during the Apocalypse, he hrms. "And ... wait, Babel device? There's a Tower housing the translation capability ...?" He's just confused now. Then, "Wait, we released what? I didn't release anything! It was NWA who brought our problems to the world...."
Uta even leans forward at the surprise. "I knew that the Quarantine was meant to keep stuff -in-, not -out-, but-" She rubs her temples, as if for easing a headache. "Oooh, man. The Beast. The Scrapped Princesses. What next?" She rubs her face. "I -so- hope this is still a videogame..."
Uta sighs and waves one had at Schneider, almost without even looking at him. "And NWA keeps accusing you of bringing the Waves. You both are accidentally steamrolling down protections, is all. If we were to be pointing fingers, it would be Olympus who should point out that the Waves that Scale produces end up, somehow, constantly damaging our alliance projects. But I won't."
She frowns, serious. "And I'm not passive-aggressive. I'm convinced that whoever our enemies are, either the Otherworlders, or some puppetmaster higher up than them, they're -specifically- trying to pit us against each other. I know our Alliances have political differences, but these attacks should be a clear sign that whoever opposes us, their main strategic goal is to get us to stop working togehter. Let's not give them this satisfaction, not to mention tactical advantage."
"...If the Palace Lands have no Top Idol, I don't plan to become it," she adds, for good measure.
"Oh, which reminds me -- as Schneider here knows, I'm researching more about a person named 'Helba'. She was apparently involved in the first attempt at the Tenth Floor Boss. The one which... did not end that well."
Setsuna looks at Schneider and then gestures to what Uta is saying about finger pointing. " At the end of the day it doesn't matter who as it is easier to just say Yamato Adventurers. " Looking back over at Uta, "Apparently its not normal behavior for monsters to talk , or make altars , or organize or anything like that. That stuff is only stuff we were dealing up to about five months ago, say around news year. After that "we" let stuff out and now at least spider demon said doesn't want to deal with us go away." Finally he finishes folding the map to the exploding slimes into a paper airplane and the moment he throws it , it dives bomb onto a plank of the pier, fortunately there is no breeze or it would have gone into the water. The necromancer quickly scrambles to grab it. " Anyways thats about what I got."
As far as Helba goes, he met her, briefly, now that he's reminded who she was. "Yeah," he says to Uta, "but, she didn't give us her phone number, though," he points out. Meaning, no way to contact her.
Uta sighs, and pinches the bridge of her nose. "We have enough trouble within Olympus with many important figures distinctly against the Tower Climb. Olympus is supposed to be Tower-Agnostic, but these days, it's only us newbies in Crescent Moon that still maintain a clearly Tower-neutral policy." Uta looks down and away, hugging herself. "And the things that I'm discovering about Aincrad of Late aren't helping either. I won't divulge them, for fear of destabilizing Yamato further, but I'm starting to suspect there's something very fishy going on with Aincrad."
After this moment of doubt, Uta snaps to face Setsuna and Schneider with determination. "Please don't think I'm opposing you. I am a firm believer that -if this is nothing more than a game-," She emphasizes the condition, "and we're still hooked up to a virtual reality headeset, getting everyone out is the right thing to do, even if the price is wiping this whole world."
Setsuna shrugs at Uta's proclamation of support, " Uta if I cared about your opinion on the tower I would have asked thee day I put in my job application. You don't have to declare yourself one way or another. You do you. However if you were to ever put a docket on Aincrad and leave it lying around the lab signed Setsuna don't read this, I wouldn't be upset about that." Taking a moment he begins to start over on his map plane, " Speaking of the tower Uta did you ever make it up to the fifth floor and do your magic in the pit of goblin hell where the goblin queen and king were ? "
"Theoretically speaking, of course. That's just a completely hypothetical scenario whose degree of convolution clearly proves how unlikely it is."
"In the same vein, it would also be nice and not at all offensive if I mysteriously found some response marked 'Not To Be Shared With Olympus, Crescent Moon in particular.' Which would be peculiar, given how Crescent Moon is the most tower-agnostic Olympus guild, hence probably the safest guild to discuss tower-related topics in."
Uta nods at Schneider. "Yeah, all sorts of crazy theories. Until we have proof of what actually happened, I pick my actions in a way that is compatible with both of the most likely options: that we're either trapped in a game, or actually living in a new reality, physical or cybernetic as it may be. The day I find out with certainty which one it is, I'm leaving Olympus and joining either Scale or New World, respectively."
Uta sighs. "Oh, yeah, that work. I'll have to mention that to Prophylaxis as well. I think he needs to know." A short pause. "Well, after, of course, he promises, like you did, that he'll share anything he'll find."
Uta snaps back to look at Setsuna. "No, I don't even know what happened there. What happened there?"
Setsuna nods his head , " So we got to the bottom of Karluin, literally found a goblin king and queen. When we were down there , a strange ominous song started. " Tries his best to recall if he ever heard it before for a moment and a number pops into his head, before he tries to hum a bit of the 44th song. After a momemnt of a horrible humming session , seriously it hurt to listen to , before he finally stops. " Sadly the queen escaped out into the world. Who knows where she is, maybe she made it to the palace lands. " Shrugs his shoulders as he continues thinking for a few minutes and then adds, "That shit was creepy."
He does nod in confirmation of Setsuna's tale of the goblins, though he can't really sing any better. Nor so you could know or repeat the song. As far as creepy, he shrugs. "It's a game, it's just a thing."
Anyway, long story short. "I'm working my way by trying to reconstruct and deduce information about Songs, all the way from the 1st up to the 47th. Skipping the holes, of course." Uta looks down, and mumbles, "We've got a lot of holes, and despite this, it's going to take time" after which she resumes her regular tone, "That's the kind of information I'm going to share with the Song Hunters. The songs above the 42nd in particular... I'm not sure how good it would be if the -Landers- learnt of them. Or the general population. Responsible disclosure, you know."
Setsuna looks at the group and stands up slowly giving a yawn, rubbing his now non skeleton leg for a moment before looking around. " Yeah I have a lead on that but I can't go follow it through until the hunter's guild finishes processing my paperwork. Anyways Ihave to go , Yuuki will be looking for me soon and wondering why I am not doing sprints through the sixth floor maze. If she finds me before I get started I am in for a hellish 24 hours." With out much more explination he hands schneider his paper airplane of the map to the exploding shrine. The paper airplane is shapped like a rose.
"I will ask about it then," she says to Schneider. "In any case, I have to go now. I have a boat to catch..."
She bows to Schneider and Setsuna, and resumes walking towards a boat. "Hmm... there was something odd about Setsuna's leg today..." Silence, as she walks on. "...ah well, maybe he got new pants and I didn't notice. Good thing the discussion didn't come up."