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Born in the Light of Eyes

Born in the Light of Eyes

When a city is set up to be a beacon of humanity's ability to cooperate and overlook prejudice, racism and hate, there are still those needed to defend her freedoms.

1555 readers have visited this universe since Quakernuts created it.
Topics: ai, androids, character driven, cops, crime, criminals, cyberpunk, cyborgs, detectives, drama, episodic, futuristic, gangs, missions, mutants, original, police, prejudice, sci fi, and thriller (Add Tags »)
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Introduction

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"A bridge of silver wings
stretches from the dead ashes
of an unforgiving nightmare
to the jeweled vision
of a life started anew"
-Aberjhani

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The world is a turbulent place, fraught with the dangers that lurk both in the shadows and limelight. The political bodies of every nation have been sitting on the edge of their seat, holding on for dear life as they threaten to fall from grace. A single spark, a playground for the children of tomorrow to prove to the elderly of today that we can get along, that unification isn't just a forlorn dream of a romantic idealist.

Sonder City, a sparkling city state built in the middle of Europe to act as a hub for all nationalities, ethnicity, genders, orientations and races to join together in harmony, to embrace each other's differences and utilize them for a common goal. The betterment of everyone involved, a historical monument to the will of peace and cooperation supposedly stemming from every person young and old. Gleaming towers of white and silver reach for the heavens, technology both marvelous and profound abundantly created and used for the purpose of enhancing our way of life. Stores, entertainment, political rallies, fundraisers and general happiness can be gleaned from the atmosphere of the city. Truly this was what everyone had hoped for, what everyone had placed their last possible bets on, in an effort to stop a global war from decimating everything they had ever loved.

What many people don't realize is the work put in to keep it that way. Grime and dirt will seep into every crevice if given the chance, as it has done here. Everyone has a hidden agenda, a secret, a dark side that they don't wish to be seen. Sonder City is no different, it only pushes itself harder to cover these up or solve them before they become a PR nightmare. The seedy underbelly of the city is filled with those who would take advantage of the city's welcoming nature and relaxed importation/immigration laws. Drugs, sex, violence and debauchery are all prevalent down where the cameras don't usually shine. A city upon a city, a cover for the real representation of what human nature naturally devolves into. We are all opportunists, some people simply seek to claim what's theirs before the rest even have a chance to breathe. They threaten to bring down everything that everyone has fought so hard for, to reveal to the rest of us that we can't change. It's in our very nature to argue, to abuse and to fight against that which would hold us back.

Then there are those who use this impulse to do the right thing. To stop those from destroying the world with their own selfish actions. The young son who helps an old lady cross the street, the adult woman who feeds homeless on her days off, the elderly man who works out of an office down on the ground floor of a corporation so most of his salary can go towards housing for the disenfranchised. On top of this all, those who have the backbone, who do the groundwork to make sure the more violent and extreme cases don't ever make it past the incubation stage. The Sonder City Police Department, the SCPD, the men and women who are capable and willing to protect those who can't do it themselves. To put themselves on the line to provide for a world that would rather launch itself into a self destructive collapse rather than get along. They rage against the forces that claim they are nothing more than animals, capable of nothing more than fulfilling their own independent desires no matter the cost to others. They are the knights, they are the valiant, they are the strong.

At the top of these heroes are the members of the Major Crimes Unit. The MCU employ the best and brightest to make sure Sonder City stays a gleaming beacon of ideals and morality to the rest of the nations. Intelligent, driven and courageous, they invoke the very essence of being the shimmering heroes of old. They are all that stands between humanity and total destruction. An extravagant claim to be sure, but when the world is using your city as a basis as to whether we can truly cooperate and belong with each other, the implications are very real. They are the last line of defense, a stop gap barricaded with the strongest materials in the form of people they could find. We are human, but we need not be driven by impulses that claim that nothing matters but ourselves. We can be better...we must be better.

The SCPD and MCU will make sure you understand that.

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"People sleep peaceably in their beds at night
only because rough men and women stand ready
to do violence on their behalf"
~George Orwell; altered

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"We are all Ordinary. We are all Boring.
We are all Spectacular. We are all Shy.
We are all Bold. We are all Heroes.
We are all Helpless.
It just depends on the day."
~Brad Meltzer

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Hey everyone! How you doing you beautiful creatures? You doing great? That's awesome! If not...well I don't really know what to say but I'mma go with 'It gets better'. Enough with formalities, let's get down to brass tacks.

Born in the Light of Eyes is a private/invite only RP between myself and Yonbibuns. This RP was created after a realization that out of several Roleplays we had joined, most didn't even survive past the first post, and those that did ended up with either several players or the Game Master them self running off to deal with life at the drop of a hat without warning. While I have nothing against these people, after all real life comes before any internet based hobby or passion, the feeling of abandonment has come to fruition in the creation of this story. Due to our experiences, we wish to avoid the aforementioned problems, and as such this project will start with only myself and Yonbibuns participating until we feel comfortable inviting people to join us. As such, no submissions will be accepted nor requests to join. I apologize if you got your hopes up before getting to this point in the RP thinking you were going to get a chance to join, but this is very much an experiment for us as well and we would like some time to figure out how things are going to run and get set up before we start loading ourselves up with other players, characters, stories, etc.

If you choose to read along, then by all means and thank you for your consideration. If not, I'll see you on the flip side.

~Quakernuts

Rules

The GM of this roleplay hasn't created any rules! You can do whatever you like!

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Character Portrait: Prince McCastor "Can't help but be the best looking person in the room."
Character Portrait: Atlas
Atlas played by Yonbibuns
"I believe what he meant to say was, how can we be of service?"

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These poor, unfortunate souls were once a part of this great world, but have been abandoned. Why don't you consider viewing their profiles and making a decision on whether or not you can roleplay them accurately?


View All »Places in Born in the Light of Eyes

MCU Headquarters

MCU Headquarters by Quakernuts

The base of operations for the MCU in Sonder City

Infinity HQ

Infinity HQ by Quakernuts

The Headquarters for the Infinity Corporation inside Sonder City.

Sonder City

Sonder City by Quakernuts

The City of Hope and Dreams

Itemis HQ

Itemis HQ by Quakernuts

Itemis Corporation Head Offices

Vackar Tech HQ

Vackar Tech HQ by Quakernuts

The Head Offices of Vackar Tech.

Middle-Middle

Middle-Middle by Quakernuts

The Middle Class Area of Sonder City, encompasses the majority of the City's territory.

Sky District

Sky District by Quakernuts

The upper class district in Sonder City. Mainly composed of the rich and powerful, including seat of government and corporation HQ's.

The Last Stand Bar

The Last Stand Bar by Quakernuts

A popular after work get together for a number of individuals

Sugar and Spice (S&S)

Sugar and Spice (S&S) by Quakernuts

A fairly electric and entertaining night club with a dubious history

Augmented Refuge (CAI HQ)

Augmented Refuge (CAI HQ) by Quakernuts

The unofficial official Headquarters and Safehouse for CAI members and representatives

Central Park

Central Park by Quakernuts

A beautiful park with a misleading name

City Hall

City Hall by Quakernuts

The seat of Government for Sonder City

Macker's Gym

Macker's Gym by Quakernuts

A relatively ordinary gym that seems to be a common workout place for SCPD members

Slums

Slums by Quakernuts

Where the poor thrive and die in equal measure, driven to the brink of human deprivation in order to see the next day.

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Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Prince McCastor Character Portrait: Atlas
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Wandering through, the life feels like a lie
Fake faces equipped with a fake smile
Can’t you see the truth
With nothing but an electronic eye


Electric country music floated through the entire area late at night. What time was it? Where was he again?

Prince lifted his head from the bar counter, his hair somehow looking purposely disheveled rather than messy from his drunken state. Prince stared at the glass in his hand, empty...just like so many other things in life. Oh man, he had reached the ‘self pity’ state of his liquor tolerance hadn’t he? That meant it was a good time to stop, after all, going to work with a hangover never ended well. Especially when Ryker would spend all morning hounding him and spraying him with something that reminded him of mom’s kitchen. Prince sat up, his eyes half closed as he brought up his free hand to give them a rub. “Did I pass out?”

“Close to it I think.” The bartender said, his gaze looking over the MCU detective as he washed a couple glasses. Luxley Pine, the owner of the Last Stand Bar. Personally, it was Prince’s favorite after work hangout, and the fact that Luxley was a fairly decent man was just icing on the cake in his opinion. “Granted, with your snoring, I thought you were dying. Was about to start running to get the med bot and shock you back into your pitiful life.”

“Aren’t you a ray of sunshine? Did I spit in your coffee or something?”

“You drooled on my counter.”

“You jest sir, the Prince does not drool o-” Prince looked down to see a small puddle where his head had been. “That was there when I got here.”

“I’m 110% positive that it wasn’t.” Luxley said, giving a small smile as he grabbed a rag and starting wiping it up. “Besides, I think you’ve had enough there Detective.”

“You know you’ve always been a good judge of liquor tolerances. When people fall asleep at your counter, you know they’ve had enough.”

“More money for me.” Luxley said, earning a small laugh from the Prince. Prince turned around, running a hand through his hair as he did so to get a better view of the place and see if anyone had showed up while he had been out. How long had he been out? Honestly, it was probably better if he didn’t know. An old fashioned jukebox was belting tunes out to the entire bar, though it had been jury rigged to a sound system that encompassed the entire bar. Old fashioned pool tables littered the area as all sorts of people crowded around them. Cyborgs and humans, officers of the law and the less disreputable. In the Last Stand, it was common courtesy to leave whatever business you had at the door, and for some odd reason it worked.

Of course, there were the odd times when it didn’t.

Almost on cue, the door slammed open to reveal several rowdy gentlemen entering the bar. A couple of them were visibly augmented, but none of them were past their twenties. They were laughing, hanging off of each other’s shoulders and generally enjoying the night. Aside from the rather abrupt entrance that caused everyone’s eyes to snap to the entrance, they were largely ignored. Until they grabbed a pool table and tried to hit the balls like they were baseballs and the cues like they were bats. Luxley slammed his hand on the table, his eyes twitching at the use of his coveted tables. “Hey! You shits! It’s a pool table, not a diamond! Treat it with respect!” The group laughed, tossing the cues haphazardly onto the table before wandering over to one of the metal tables and proceeding to just generally be a nuisance.

This wasn’t the first occurrence of this, to be honest it happened a lot more than one would have liked or expected, but here they were again. After about 10 minutes of the group essentially declaring themselves ‘Lords of the Bar’ (Their words, not Prince’s), Luxley reached under the counter. Prince reached over and placed a hand on his arm. “You know the rules Luxley.”

“They’re being assholes and annoying my customers.”

“You take one shot and I’ll have to arrest you for excessive force.” Luxley looked over at Prince, who unfortunately didn’t look all that authoritative with one of his eyes half closed and his other eye kind of glossed over. Luxley grunted, his beard bristling with annoyance at the fact that not only was Prince right, but he would be forced to arrest him if he did so. Luxley’s hand released the shotgun held under the bar, giving a very exasperated sigh before pulling his arm away from Prince and crossing them in front of him.

“You’re the cop, go deal with them.”

“For what? Being loud?”

“Disrupting my customers.”

“I’m a customer, and I ain’t disrupted.”

“Am I bugging you to go get rid of them?”

“YES!”

“Then you are disrupted, now deal with it.”

Prince stood up from his stool at the counter, giving his shirt a pull down and dusting off the shoulders of his blazer. “Well played sir, well played.” With that being said, he walked over to the table where one of the obviously drunken young adults was now dancing on the table ironically like a stripper...or maybe they really did enjoy it. He wasn’t here to judge. “Gentlemen.” Prince stated loud enough to get their attention. “You are being too loud and disrupting the general atmosphere of the place, either calm down or leave.” They paused for a second, before laughing and going back to what they were doing. By this point a few people had stopped to look at the scene, which earned a smile from Prince. He loved being the center of attention, even if this was the bottom of the barrel kind.

“Alright you loud mouthed little cock suckles.” Prince yelled, slamming the table and leaning in on the group of people. “I asked you politely, now I’m asking you using your language. Get the fuck out.” The group looked a little taken aback, before their gazes fell upon Prince and they slowly started to stand up to Prince. There were five in total, all relatively well built and a couple with augmentations that, while not military, would still sting. Prince stood there, his cocky smile that had become a staple of the rather young detective planted on his face like he was watching saturday morning cartoons. The supposed ring leader of the group was the first to say something, through slurred words naturally.

“Fuck off.” Elegant, short, to the point. Prince gave a nod, a smug smile on his face as he contemplated the reaction. Prince then gave a short laugh to the entire thing as he realized something, something he would have thought of to begin with if he wasn’t ten beers and twelve shots into the night.

“You know that part where someone tells someone else; ‘You walked into the wrong neighborhood’?” The kids looked around slightly before Prince pointed behind them. As they turned, they were met with several weapons of varying lethality pointed in their general direction. Cops and scumbags, all one in the same here who simply wanted to protect their bar, stood side by side in the only moment they ever would. The kids froze, unsure as to what to do before Prince put an arm around the Ring Leader. “Now, I can tell that you’re not wearing a diaper, because that stain on the ass end of your jeans indicates a very precise feeling of fear, so how about you go home, change, have a shower maybe, and sleep off this horrible night of excess?” The kid still looked ready to fight, but his friends were not in the same boat.

“C’mon man...not worth it...just not worth it.” They stated as they pulled the Ring Leader with them. With a slow walk towards the door, it took several moments for them to finally exit the building in what Prince could only call the ‘Most Anticlimactic exit ever produced by drunken idiots’. Prince gave a nod, running a hand through his and releasing a breath. With that job done, he turned back towards everyone else, who had holstered their weapons.

“My thanks people of varying moral integrity. Next round’s on me.” There were a few cheers as Prince took up his spot at the counter once more. Luxley wandered over, placing one more beer in front of Prince.

“Thanks...but isn’t that technically public intoxication?”

“Wrong question.”

“Do you care?”

“Bingo...and nope. That’s beat cop shit.”




Prince’s Apartment

Beep...Beep...Beep...Beep...Beep...BEEP

“FUCK OFF!” Prince yelled, grabbing his radio and tossing it across the room, yanking it from it’s plug in. His head was buried in his pillow, his sheets a mess and his pants still clinging to his form by the ankles. He had made it home at least, and almost managed to get undressed before passing out. He woke up slowly, his eyes still closed as he placed a hand on his hair. Dear God, it was as if someone had taken a leaf blower to it. He couldn’t have that, and the state of his being right now? If anyone saw him, he would keel over right then and there. With the appearance of his own body firmly lodged as an image in his mind, he opened his eyes slowly.

“Oh fuckin christ on a pizza roll.” Prince exclaimed, his palms coming up to his eyes to push them in and feel the cold relief as spots started to punctuate the blackness of his eyelids like fireworks. “Ok...Ok...Ok...It’s ok.” Prince opened his eyes again, wincing at the pain…

The pain of seeing himself in the full body mirror adjacent to his bed.

“Look at you.” Prince stated, disgusted at his current body image. “You’ve hit rock bottom...for the third time this week.” There was a heavy sigh as he picked himself up from the bed, groaning in protest as his body attempted to rebel against his spirit. He took one step before remembering his pants were still linked to his feet, stumbling over them and landing face first on the floor. Prince placed both hands over his mouth as he screamed slightly at the pain now coursing through what felt like every fiber of his being. He laid there for awhile, allowing the metal floor (Which was painted to look like hardwood) to cool his throbbing pain. When that was done, he threw the pants off and once again climbed to his feet with all the grace of a disabled hippo. “Awwwwwwwwwwww...Ehhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh” He groaned, finally able to climb to his feet and exit his bedroom.

As he wandered into the small hallway, he took a quick left into the bathroom, which as he entered he was assailed with a variety of scents. As he took a quick look, he realized why, staring at the toilet in horror. “Yep...that would be about 15 shots of Rye. Oooh, maybe 16.” He gave the contraption a quick flush as he attempted to have himself a shower. 20 minutes later and more than half of that spent making sure his hair was perfect, he walked out of the bathroom with nothing but a towel covering his lower half and strode confidently into the living room of his small apartment.

A white couch faced a rectangular device attached to the wall. A holographic display, a television really. A couple of recliners, also white, were on either side of the couch and facing the tv. Underneath was a small table that held a N87 gaming system and a small library, along with paddles. It was funny, even with virtual reality becoming the go to, paddle gameplay was still widely loved by most people around the world. Not to mention it was more accessible and cheaper than owning a VR suite in one’s home. Off to the right was the kitchen, divided from the living room by a half wall. In it were the necessities: Fridge, sink, microwave, dishwasher, etc. With a marble finish and wood paint job covering the metal cupboards, it was actually the nicest looking area of the apartment. Of course, that was the extent of his living place as just off the kitchen was the door to his little slice of heaven.

Naturally, draped over the kitchen counter, table, couch, recliners and in a corner for some reason were all of Prince’s clothes. Jacket, shirt, shoes, socks, even his shades had ended up in the sink for some reason. “Drunk me is such an idiot.” Prince said to himself as he wandered over to the fridge. He opened it to reveal...not a whole lot. He was living the true life of a bachelor at the moment. He really wanted eggs though, mainly to cure the unnatural splitting headache trying to cave in his skull. He closed the door, pressing the pad that was displayed on the front. He touched through the menu, ordering eggs, butter, some lettuce, orange juice and two pork chops for later. Finishing his order, he heard a ‘thunk’ as the groceries were delivered to his fridge via a cylinder system built into all the apartments. He opened the fridge to find all the items requested placed inside with surprising care. He grabbed the carton of eggs, pulling out five eggs before placing the carton back inside. Reaching into one of the top cupboards, he pulled out a glass and placed it in front of him, closing the door as he did so.

With a sloppy execution, he dumped the five eggs into the glass, and with more than a grimace, downed all five in a mighty gulp. Once that was done, and he had finished heaving, he wiped his face with his arm and washed his hands in the sink. He hated it, but to be honest, it was the best hangover cure he had come across. Yeah, there were so many drugs out there that claimed to do just that thing, but he had tried nearly all of them and so far none of them beat the eggs. He gave a series of noises akin to a gorilla trying to imitate a guitar sound in order to get the taste out of his mouth as he made his way to his room.

From there, he opened his closet, which automatically started spinning around as it made its way towards his outfit for the day. Today he was going for a ‘Casual Business’ look. A white dress shirt, black slacks, white red belt, red tie, and black running shoes. He nodded, obviously satisfied with himself as he set about donning his suit for the day. Soon enough, he was fully dressed, immaculately one might add. His dress shirt didn’t have a single wrinkle in it, his pants were smooth to the touch, and the tie was knotted up to perfection. Matched with the fact that he had spent a great deal of time on his hair, you would never assume that this man had gotten black out wasted the night before. With that being done, he closed his closet and wandered over to a panel built into the wall. Beside it was a palm scanner, which Prince put his hand up to. “There’s no such thing as too much perfection.” He spoke, a passphrase for his safe as the panel opened up to reveal everything he needed for his position. A underarm holster, his badge, gun, credentials and general police gear. He saddled up, and once everything was nice and snug, he closed the safe and stepped back in front of the full body mirror. Admiring himself for a couple minutes longer than one really should, he finally deemed himself worthy of being seen and made his way to the door. There he agonized over the jacket he was to wear. He looked so good this morning, it would be such a waste to cover it with a jacket.

If it rained though, he would have a meltdown just like the old crone in Wizard of Oz. He groaned to himself, but ultimately he decided on his Fuego leather jacket, waxed to a beautiful sheen along with silver rimmed shades. Stopping for a moment longer to look at the mirror that he had hung in front of the door to make sure everything fit properly, he opened the door and exited his apartment.




Prince pulled his 2077 Herini sports car into his parking spot at the MCU HQ. A 2 door slim and fast looking thing that looked more suited to being some irresponsible playboy’s thing rather than an MCU detective. Of course, once you saw Prince exit the car, you could tell the same type of personality was in play. Prince walked towards the elevator, clicking the lock button on his keys to hear the familiar ‘ding ding’ the car responded with to acknowledge that it was secure. He pressed the button to get the lift moving, and once it opened, stepped inside while taking a sip from his coffee cup. From there, it was a short ride up to the main floor of the Nest, otherwise known as MCU HQ.

The elevator dinged and the doors opened to reveal a flurry of activity already happening. Several desks could be seen from his position as monitors filled with varying amounts of information casts glares of light upon the officers who sat near them. Normal civilians sat with detectives, giving statements and in varying degrees of emotional stability. A couple of robots walked around performing menial chores such as cleaning the precinct or handing papers to other officers. The entire place always felt alive, from the earliest crack of dawn to the blackest pits of night. Prince exited the elevator, taking in a deep breath and exhaling with an exaggerated flare.

“So Princess decided to show up this morning. Heard you might be dead or something.” An officer wandered up to Prince, his grey hair indicating his seniority as well as his senility if you asked Prince. He wore a standard issue SCPD uniform, which was the norm for a lifelong sergeant. His face was littered with wrinkles, scars and cybernetics. In fact, nearly a whole half of his face was metal, with a skin overlay covering the more glaring issues. The man had been with the SCPD nearly since its inception, yet refused to take any kind of officer position, preferring to stay in the field. If only his name actually lived up to the history the man had to offer.

“Mancy, you crazy coot, I can’t die.” Prince stated as he walked on by, Mancy falling in step with him. “I survive through pure willpower and the amount of blackmail I have on Death himself.”

“Somehow I doubt that.”

“Would you believe a cup of about 5 eggs and an inexhaustible supply of pizazz?”

“I would believe the egg part, for some reason you smell like a rooster’s ass...you know, more than usual.”

“Well that stung only the tiniest bit.” Prince stated, smiling as he did so and taking another sip from his coffee. To be honest, Mancy and Prince made a very odd pair. Mancy was old enough to be Prince’s dad, and their personalities could be seen as clashing. Mancy was very serious most of the time, and Prince could barely get through a conversation without throwing some kind of quip around. Yet it seemed that they relaxed to a happy medium around each other. They weren’t partners, but they had a mutual respect that allowed this kind of banter to go on unabated. “Anything Prince worthy this morning?”

“Chief was looking for you.”

“Never a good thing to walk in on.” Prince said, stopping at his desk and noticing the dirty state of it. While he prided himself on looking good at all times, the areas around him often suffered due to the lack of attention spent elsewhere. He placed his coffee among the other half empty cups on the corner of his workspace. “Any idea as to what?”

“Honestly no, but I wouldn’t put it past him to give you a firm hard slap on the wrist.”

“Almost a ‘phrasing’ moment there old man.” Prince said, giving a cocky smirk as he leaned over his desk and logged into his desktop. Immediately he started clicking on his email, noticing one from the Chief asking him to his office as soon as he came in. Others were case details and such that he could go over later.

“Keep your mind above the gutter there Princess and your dress past your knees.”

“I hate the dress code.”

“At least the dress can have frills.”

“Ooooh, and you can be my man servant. I demand a tail coat that reaches down to your ankles.” Mancy gave a quick laugh at that before patting Prince on the back.

“The wife is out of town, so Last Stand tonight?”

“After last night…” Prince paused, his face going serious for a moment as if he was deep in thought. “Only a rampaging emp could stop me.” Mancy smiled, giving a small wave as he went back to his desk to resume his duties. Prince gave a smile, locking his desktop and pulling a sucker from a stash he kept in his desk for the kids that were sometimes dragged into the office. Ripping the wrapper off and popping it into his mouth, he glanced over at the Chief’s office. The windows overlooking the main area were polarized, preventing any vision inside. That put up alarm bells in Prince’s mind as he took his jacket off and placed it on his chair. He tugged at his shirt to make sure it was suitably tight before walking the distance to the Chief’s office.

A few other Detectives gave nods or ‘Good Mornings’ as he passed, which he replied with a smile and greeting in kind. When he got to the door to the office, he took a breath and knocked on the door. “Who is it?” The Chief’s voice answered. At the very least, he sounded very much calm about whatever Prince was being called in for.

“Detective McCastor sir.” Prince replied, the Chief being one of the few people he spoke to with...almost seriousness. At the very least, he was a lot more controlled around the man who had the ability to fire him or bust him back down to beat cop.

“Come on in.” The man replied, to which Prince entered the office. Inside was a rather spacious area, meant to be able to house important people/victims/witnesses. There was a few luxurious sofa chairs, a small table and enough room to pace if one wanted to. Off to the side sat an inert television used for video conferencing. Center piece was the Chief’s desk, modest by request yet still impressive when compared to the rest on the floor. Pure Mahogony, it was starting to show its years as scrapes, spills and burns showed on some of the surface. On it, he had a picture of his family, a lovely older woman with a child who appeared be in his early teens. He was thankfully unaugmented and shared much of his father’s rough edges it seemed. The woman had warm brown eyes and hair that hung loosely around her shoulders. It was a posed photo, although Prince knew for a fact that one of the Chief’s drawers held more candid pics.

The man stood behind his desk, his hands filtering through a couple of files in his hands. The first thing people noticed about him was his rather intrusive looking cybernetics. While they looked painful, the man never seemed to be in any kind of pain. They weren’t exactly pleasant to look at though, but Skipper McDougal didn’t care about such things. His eyes drifted from the paperwork to Prince as he walked further into the office, then glanced over at a figure that was standing opposite of his desk.

Whoever this was, he was tall and covered head to toe in fabric. Could be a cybernetic freelancer for some case? Didn’t seem to be MCU, but they had their fair share of deep dive operators who looked anything but professional in order to fit in with a certain crowd. “Sir.” Prince stated, walking up beside the figure and standing towards his Chief. “You needed to see me?”

“Yes, thank you for being prompt.” McDougal stated, putting the papers down on his desk. “I’m going to be blunt about this and get the shock out of your system right away Prince...Meet your new partner.” Prince blinked once...twice...three times before finally his mouth pursed enough to form a single sound.

“Huh?”

Setting

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Character Portrait: Prince McCastor Character Portrait: Atlas
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And we live in a beautiful world,
Yeah we do, yeah we do.
We live in a beautiful world.


It was a good day, after all.

Skipper was giving him another chance to prove himself in MCU, though he hadn’t quite put it in that way. No, this was not his fault. This was only a small rest. Some time away. Agents, he’d said, took leave all the time when things didn’t pan out as expected. He noted the pull to his lips. The crease of his brow. The way he patted him on the back whenever he left him at his apartment. Even so, he was happy. Over the moon. He liked that saying. How could an emotion reach there and back again? It had to be powerful. Seeing how he felt the morning he’d been told that he could go back to the office, and start working in the precinct, it appeared sound. Joy had startling strength.

His vacation was officially over. His suspension rescinded. Not that he hadn’t enjoyed his time in Skipper’s home. The gratitude he felt was explored through actions and many, many conversations. He cooked, he cleaned and filled out any paperwork he was too tired to fill out himself. Sometimes, the old man fell asleep at the table, and would awake to find all of the work properly finished; neatly stacked beside a cup of coffee. It was all he could do to show his appreciation. A smaller part of him wished that he could have a place of his own: a home. Just like everyone else. Or, less restrictions on going outside.

Out there, where things were dangerous. Wild. Beautiful.

However, his request had been too much. Even if it made his heart sink… he understood. He wasn’t well enough to mingle with the public. Self-reflection was an important step to bettering himself and for that to take place, he needed time alone. To process what had happened with his old partner. To think of what had gone wrong and what he could do to prevent it in the future. He had done a lot of that: thinking. His recovery made it a mandatory measure. With nothing but pale blue walls, white furniture, and a 50” inch television, there wasn’t much else to occupy his thoughts.

This, however, was much different. With each agent, he’d remained at their household until he was required to accompany them on the streets. He hadn’t interacted much with MCU’s headquarters in the past beyond the first introductions—Skipper was making lenience's this time, though he wasn’t sure why. What was different this time, compared to the others? He had asked him before, of course, but he never got any straight answers: not with him. A shake of the head. A grin, a scratch of the beard and little else. He had said once that they had done him wrong and this time, they’d do it properly. An agent couldn’t be treated like a tool, put back in the box whenever he was not needed. He would be an agent of MCU in all the ways he ever dreamed of.

It was enough for him. More than enough.

The excitement he felt was palpable. Atlas imagined it tickling down his extremities, down through his toes and fingers; and if he thought about it hard enough he swore he could feel it. Time ran sluggishly slow. Each time he brought up the clock in his peripherals, flashing in the corner of his vision… it seemed as if only minutes had passed. He wanted to meet his partner now, not later. The morning before, Skipper had brought him out to meet the rest MCU’s crew; real conversations, rather than curt introductions. This would be his family. He thought that he ought to treat them as such and get to know them to the best of his abilities. Agents functioned as a well-oiled entity; not as separate individuals. Several cogs, not a singular device.

Vaxen Kilby was a puzzling man. Tugging at Atlas’ arms, turning his face over, and tapping at his face-plate. He seemed vested by his inner workings and asked him to change his expression. Come up with weird images. He laughed a lot, though he was constantly reiterating that he was just kidding. And to not repeat what he said. Parris, on the other hand, was much quieter. A little sad, he thought. He supposed that she may have been shy, though she had spared him enough of her time to show him where she worked. She showed him her tools and workstation and pictures of corpses, before shooing him away.

Ryker was one individual he was actually somewhat familiar with. He’d been to Skipper’s house more than once and had always brought him things from town during his vacation. Whether it was magazines or Mona D’s newest romantic film—he brought them all in package form, meticulously set in a brown box with MCU’s logo emblazoned on the side. He’d always noticed that he didn’t smile much, but he had always thought of him as a kindred spirit. A man with a heart of gold. He’d heard that said before, and liked the phrasing… but sometimes wondered where it had come from. Did the pigment of one’s heart change depending on the amount of kindness a person had? The world was peculiar. Human beings especially.

He looked at the time for the hundredth time today, tapping his metallic fingers across the marbled counter.

Two more hours.




The tall figure shifted in place. There was a sense of general discomfort; teetering the weight from foot to foot. Only then did the fabric slip away from its face, revealing a black panel with turquoise lights built into the jawline and much larger ones that represented his eyes. Pupiless. More like car lights than anything else, with mechanical lids. He shouldered the rest of the fabric off and let it pool at his feet. Of course, he’d wanted to show off his MCU uniform. Custom-fit for him. It was the same sort of uniform new agents would wear when they were being sworn into the force. He’d never worn one before, and insisted that this would be the perfect time to wear it.

Atlas cleared his throat and toed the fabric to the side, finally taking the time to look at his new partner. There was a jumble of unease in the pit of his stomach. Or else, where he thought it would come from. Unease. He had felt it before, when he’d been brought in for his mistake. Unpleasant as it was, this felt a little different. He’d read about if before. Butterflies. He was nervous about this encounter. The expression on the man’s face wasn’t exactly what he had expected. There was no smile, no uplift of brow. Nothing at all to tell him that this person was as equally excited as he was.

Huh?

That was all. For a moment, silence stretched between them and Atlas was unsure of how he could break it. How he should break it. He glanced towards Skipper, then back to the man in front of him. Prince, as Skipper had said. Like in the fairy-tales. If that was the case, then he would be honorable, kind and brave. Someone who had all the makings of a good partner. He held out one of his hands, in the respective gesture of goodwill. A handshake. He hoped he couldn't tell how nervous he was. There was a metallic rumble to his voice when he spoke; which did not sound too unpleasant to his own ears… but might have been off-putting to someone he’d never met before. Hopefully not in this case.

“Good to meet you, partner. I’m Atlas.”

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Character Portrait: Prince McCastor Character Portrait: Atlas
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This...was odd.

Not only was Prince not one for partners, but he wasn't particularly fond of the robotic kind either. Most 'bots', to put it nicely, were dumber than a sack of bricks that grew up in the poor end of the city. They followed directions, sure, but you had to be extremely precise or, at the very least, spend hours getting them programmed to understand a particular set of lingo. Even if you did that, someone else could come along and need the bot and then they need to do the same thing. Last thing he wanted was essentially a giant hunk of wasted metal clinging to his ankles as he went about his daily life. Prince stared at Atlas, as the bot seemed to proclaim, holding out a hand for Prince to shake. Someone had spent some time with the configuration at least, but even then this thing would be wasted on someone like him. Prince looked down at the hand, but felt no compulsion to grasp it and shake. After all, it was a machine, incapable of being offended or having its feelings hurt. Instead he turned back towards the Captain, a puzzled look on his face. "Did I do something wrong?" Prince asked, his question earnest as he desperately clawed his way into his memories trying to find a particular event that would have pissed the Captain off enough to warrant an overpriced babysitter. "Because unless I royally screwed the pooch, and I'm not that hard into bestiality, I can't think of a single thing that would warrant this kind of an ankle weight."

"You think this is a punishment, Detective?" Skipper asked, his mouth twitching into a smirk as his eyebrow raised slightly. Prince looked towards Skipper, then back at the bot, then back at Skipper.

"It isn't? You're assigning me a Blue Bot as a partner...that's essentially a punch to the dick and a knee to the chin."

"Language, Detective." Skipper stated, earning a slight groan from Prince. "Our new addition is pretty impressionable."

"Impressionable, what is it a new model that learns fr-" Prince stopped dead in his tracks as he looked over at the bot one more time. "...No."

"Yep."

"When?"

"Some time ago, that detail is hardly important."

"Why?"

"A test."

"Me?"

"Yes you."

"WHY?!"

"Starting to ask myself that very same question, Detective." Skipper stated, crossing his arms in front of him as he nodded towards Atlas. "And as he said, his name is Atlas. I would suggest using it." Prince looked at the still outstretched hand then back up at Atlas's...face? He didn't know whether to run for cover, approach him like he was just another dude, or act as if he was meeting some foreign diplomat. To say that Prince was uncomfortable would be an understatement. While he would never say he was afraid of AI, he was overly cautious and considered them to be a dangerous avenue of research. Humans were, in most ways, predictable and easy to track. AI's could think faster, react faster and had one major thing lacking when it came to understanding their motives;

Humanity.

Prince eventually grasped Atlas's hand, giving it a firm hard shake as he stared at Atlas. "Detective Prince McCastor." Prince stated, stealing a glance at Skipper to ask him to tell him what was going on without actually speaking.

Ah—the response Atlas had been looking for all along. Acceptance. Why else would he willingly shake his hand? Much of the back-and-forth conversation left him puzzled. A punch to the dick and kick to the chin? Why would anyone do something like that? This meeting was nothing like that at all. The comparison was inaccurate. He would have to bring that up again in casual conversation. Besides, Prince seemed like the type who wouldn’t mind any of his questions. He’d asked his own several times already: why? Though he assuredly had done nothing wrong. The initial question he'd posed rung in his head. Whirred incorrigible. Their partnership was something to be happy about, wasn't it?

It was. To him, at least.

The well of excitement only seemed to grow, threatening to spill over. Blooming into something larger than himself. Standing here, in his uniform, in front of his partner. What adventures would they go on? What criminals would they bring to justice? What would he learn from him? There were infinite possibilities; and he wanted to experience them all. He fought the initial urge to tap his foot on the ground, or draw him into a hug. Those things were reserved for good friends and family... and they weren't there yet. Hopefully that would change. Soon.

Prince was his new partner. This man. This time, he’d do things the properly. With his help, of course. A whirring noise sounded as he gripped his hand and gave it a good shake. A little too excitedly. A strong handshake sent off all the right messages; a man could tell another man’s mettle by the strength of their handshake. Or so he’d read. He only released his hand when he realized that he hadn’t stopped bobbing it up and down, rattling the man’s arm like a rope swung between them.

“Sorry, Detective McCastor,” he retracted his hand back to his side and rubbed the back of his neck with his free hand, turning his attention towards the ceiling, “It’s been awhile, is all.” There was a twang to his distinctive, automated voice. Something familiar. Another agent’s influence. Old habits died hard.

Atlas scuffed the heel of his mechanical foot on the ground and lifted his shoulders, almost in a sheepish fashion. “Is there something we should be doing, Skipper?”

I was just getting to that, Atlas. Skipper stated as his hand drifted to his computer, tapping a couple buttons and presenting a screen that only he could see. Prince, this is going to be a step down for you, but I was hoping to have Atlas slowly integrated into the MCU... as such, I'm putting both of you on beat duty for the next couple of days." Prince visibly cringed as he slowly replaced his hand back down at his side.

"Sir... I haven't walked the street in years... isn't there something else we could do? Vandalism? Jaywalking? Hell, I'd even take a high society case!"

"Well if you're lucky, you'll probably get to see the first two." Skipper continued pressing buttons on his keyboard. "And before you say you're too busy, I know you have no open cases at the moment Detective, so do please spare me that excuse."

"How about 'My sister is sick and I need to take some time off' excuse?"

"Extremely low brow and not going to work."

"Had to try." Prince stated, earning a sideways glance from the Captain. He continued tapping away on his computer until he seemed satisfied. A moment later, Prince's phone vibrated in his pocket. He grabbed it, flipping through the messages and seeing the new assignment from Skipper. He groaned as his beat cop duty was made official, not to mention a very clear indication of a 'partner'.

"There, your assignment and route have been given. Now, since I happen to know you, Prince, I want to make something very clear." Skipper walked around his desk, standing in front and leaning against it so that the both of them could fully see all of his augmentations. He placed his palms on the wooden surface of his work area, glancing more towards Prince than Atlas. "Atlas is here to learn, to understand and ultimately become a asset to the MCU. As such, I expect you to be on your best behavior. Teach him the ropes like you would any rookie and be sure to expand his knowledge where ever you can."

"I don't remember seeing anything in my job description as to having to play the babysitter, sir." Prince stated with more than a hint of sarcasm to his voice.

"We're the law, Detective, we are babysitters... we're just better equipped." Skipper looked over to Atlas. "Atlas, I've forwarded you Prince's file for you to peruse, but if you have any questions for him now, I would love to see how he answers them." Prince squirmed slightly, rolling on the balls of his feet as he looked over at the tall piece of metal beside him.

Atlas was mumbling something about there being absolutely no babies in the vicinity. Whether or not he was just being smarmy was anyone’s guess, though he seemed to be nodding along with their conversation, luminous eyes sparkling up at each interjection. He was filling away information, saving it for a latter date. No doubt, he could quote it verbatim. He tapped at the small plating running along his wrist line, sparking up a holographic adaptation of the details Skipper had just sent them moments before. Particularly Prince’s file; his dossier winked up, displaying a younger profile smirking up at him.

If Prince’s lack of enthusiasm was anything to go by, the android seemed jubilous in comparison. A stark contrast. Beat duty! How he’d missed the simplicity of the streets, watching out for nee-doers, and bad guys. He didn’t mind one bit. This would be a prime opportunity to prove that he was well enough to become fully integrated into MCU’s midst's. A true, blue agent of the force. He swiveled his attention back to Prince, noting his sour expression with a tip of his head. He tapped at his wrist again, and the image of Prince’s face flickered away. He seemed to consider the question, scratching at the bottom of his chin with a metal finger.

He had too many, after all. Scrambling to be heard. He did not, however, want to bombard him here, all at once. Making Friends 101, a book he had already read several times, dog-eared as it was, informed him that it was best to grow close to someone gradually. One on one. Usually over coffee.

“Ah, no, Skipper sir,” Atlas paused and turned his body towards the door, dropping his hand back to his side. A metallic hm sounded, as he glanced back at Prince, “How do you take your coffee, Detective McCastor?”

It was important.

Prince watched Atlas turn to leave only to turn back towards him. How did he take his coffee? Out of all the questions, that was one that was common among human partners but, well, to be honest Prince had no idea what to expect from this. He was well outside his comfort zone, and considering his reputation and solve rate, he wasn't even sure why he was chosen for this particular job. "3 sugar, 2 cream." Prince answered hesitantly, looking back at Skipper who only made a motion towards the door for him to get going. Prince closed his eyes for a moment, taking a breath before walking to the door which Atlas opened up for them. As they walked out, several detectives stopped to peer at Prince and the person who followed him, confused by the rather tall stature of the person in question. Prince continued walking to his desk, looking over to see Mancy giving a coy look towards him. Prince put two fingers to his eyes then pointed at Mancy, who only gave a smile in response and went back to his own work. Prince shook his head, grabbing his jacket on his way back to his desk. "We'll take my car."

Prince led them to the elevator, hopping in and pressing the button for the parkade. During the ride down, Prince looked over at Atlas. "First rule, don't tell anyone you're an AI, the response will probably be less than favorable. If anyone asks, you're a sophisticated SCPD Android, top of the line with advanced VI parameters to mimic human behavior. Second rule, you follow my lead. I don't know what's going through that head of yours, but listen to what I say or you'll most likely end up regretting it in a number of different ways." The elevator dinged and the doors opened to reveal the parkade. Prince could see his car from where they stood. "Third rule, I reserve the right to make up rules on the spot to changing circumstances." Prince took a step out of the elevator, turning to face the AI.

"Any questions?"

Atlas only nodded his head at each interjection, tipping his head to the side as a dog might’ve. If he noticed any unusual looks, he certainly gave no indication of it. Mechanical eyes blinked at him, turquoise spinning. While he didn’t understand why lying about being an AI was a good idea, seeing how agents were supposed to be just, honest, and fair, he made a mental note of it. As well as his preference for coffee. Three sugar, two cream. A sweet concoction, if Skipper was anything to go by. He usually drank it black. Perhaps, this was an inflection on Prince's personality. Sweet as sugar. “A sophisticated SCPD Android, top of the line with advanced VI parameters to mimic human behavior,” he repeated, in Prince’s voice, down to the sarcastic edge, before turning back to his echoing drawl, "Are you and Detective Mancy intimate?"

The android mirrored the fingers to eyes motion, and raised an imploring eyebrow. A plate, raising up above his browline. Or, wherever it was supposed to be. It was strange, hearing a question worded so genuinely. There was no trace of a tease. No mocking tone. Simply an observation he'd made on the way to the elevator. He looked at him expectantly, almost too eagerly, awaiting his response.

"Intim-what?!" Prince started, pausing to look over at the machine. "No...god no...what di" It was then that Prince noticed the gesture the machine was making before letting a breath release from his nose. "We're friends...buddies, coworkers, you know that kind of thing. We're not...the other thing." Prince stumbled through his explanation, mentally facepalming at the entire question. If this is the way this thing asks questions, I have to stop jumping to assumptions.

"If that's the question you ask, obviously you don't have any serious ones in you." Prince stated as he reached his car and unlocked the doors. He motioned for Atlas to get in.

"Alright then, let's go get this over with."

Born in the Light of Eyes: Out Of Character (OOC)

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