Snippet #2766500

located in Capetown, Texas, a part of Project Oddity, one of the many universes on RPG.

Capetown, Texas

Welcome to Capetown, Texas, the nation's 5th in population density of parahumans to humans!

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Character Portrait: Mara Haruka Black
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With hands clasped tight, they moved through the chaos to HLA HQ. Even as they stood in the crowd of costumed parahumans, Mara did not let go of Ace's hand.

She was scared. It was actually happening. An abhorrent was going to go through here, right here in their hometown, and people were going to die. Mara stared blankly ahead and didn't look up at the people surrounding her - they were strangers and had nothing to do with her. They were going to die. She knew she couldn't be a hero like Ace. Even Ace couldn't save everyone. They were going to die. Ace wouldn't die, though. She wouldn't let him die.

There was a sudden quiet, and then commotion again. Was it starting already? No, she immediately calmed herself. Ace could sense her tension, she knew, because his hands squeezed her hand a little tighter. He wasn't talking at all now, and that didn't help at all. It was okay, though, because she knew that he cared and his hand was warm. He was safe. She looked at him, but he was staring at something else with a determined face. Four prominent figures. Mara could barely see them through the tall crowds, but she could tell that they were respected by Ace. They were probably very powerful capes.

Not even a minute later, there was a fight. Even with all this noise, she could clearly hear a woman's voice pierce through the background chatter. Powerful and maybe even arrogant, but she was betting that the woman was more powerful than arrogant. Again, the "unspoken rules" were mentioned. Just like the time in that sandwhich shop. She could envision the air quotes around that phrase. Everyone quieted, but she still didn't understand what the unspoken rules were. How could there be rules if no one said them out loud? She searched for a comparison, but she could only come up with the unspoken agreement between her Ace that she would not become a hero.

Ace still hasn't talked to her since he told her to hold his hand when they got off the car. Despite her anxiety about this situation, her thoughts distracted her and Ace's presence already calmed her down significantly.

Another commotion broke out. People were yelping, stumbling, jumping, and sometimes using their powers. This time, she wondered if someone was crazy enough to pick fights with the crowd when an abhorrent was probably minutes away from destroying this place. No, she told herself again. Black boxes with propellors flew through the air and landed on people. Mara observed that some people were too sensitive and were merely surprised when the boxes latched around their wrists as it did to her right wrist just now. By Ace's sudden body jerk, he was surprised too.

Mara skimmed the design on her right wrist. Black, plain, metallic maybe, and designed like a bracelet. Or maybe a faceless watch. Nothing happened. Now that she thought about it, she couldn't feel it. It was completely harmless. What was this? A Tinker probably made this, but she wasn't sure. It wasn't likely to harm her since it wouldn't have been able to latch onto her otherwise, but she was worried for Ace who had no such protection. He must have known that she would worry since he gave her a reassuring smile.

It's probably a tracking device. We're going into a battle, after all. Let's not worry too much about that and trust them. Everyone here are our allies, you know.

Yes, that made sense. A suddenly loud voice dominated the clearing, and she couldn't help but turn her attention to the flying cape. The man was making a speech that made her feel... strangely annoyed. The cape Ace labeled as "Legend" was making a noble speech, how capes were doing this for the good of humanity. This was a noble act. Thinking about it, this was probably also very much in line with Ace's philosophy and, in turn, her own. Ace looked almost awed at the sight of this charismatic cape. Mara admitted that the cape seemed reliably strong at first glance. Maybe it was the costume...

But there was a something bothering her, a bothersome pressure in her chest. An unwanted emotion. She wondered idly as she stared blankly at the hero above her...

Why does this seem kind of... wrong?