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Harper Calloway Fields

I heard this great joke from my sister. Ready? What did one ocean say to the other ocean? ..... Give up? Nothing. They just...WAVED! AHAHAHAHA*snorts*HAHAHAHA!

0 · 1,045 views · located in Aires

a character in “Birthstone Spirits: The Great Escape”, as played by cirrus_sd

Description

Image Full Name: Harper Calloway Fields
Age: "I'm feeling twenty-twoooo~ See, it's funny because I am 22..."
Birthday: June 22
Living Situation: Currently living in a small apartment in Boston, MA. Originally from Manhattan, NYC.
Appearance: Harper hovers at 5'11 (and a half). He has dark brown, loosely curly hair that "cannot be tamed" (unless gratuitous amounts of hair gel are used) and naturally tanned skin that only gets darker the more it is exposed to the sun, with the exception of his nose, which, oddly enough, is the only part of his body that gets sunburned, which usually leads to him putting an obnoxious amount of sunscreen on said facial appendage. He has large eyes the color of the sea, switching between blue and green or a combination of both depending on the light and whatever color shirt he is wearing. He has a mouth that smiles easily, with playful dimples and eye crinkles that his sister jokes makes him look old, to which he always reply that they simply "add character". His face overall is very expressive, and he isn't afraid to exercise it, often folding and contorting his face into different expressions, sometimes out of pure boredom. His ears stick out from his face more so than most, and are even more prominent when he wiggles them, a feat he is particularly proud of, next to his whistling. Lately he has been trying out facial hair as a part of his image, though he still shaves regularly.

Due to a lifetime of swimming, his upper body is quite built, his shoulders broad. He has large palms, but his fingers are oddly slender, tapering at the fingertips, and his nails are rounded rather than square. His toes are also fairly long, and he has taken to using them as extra hands, opening doors, picking things up from the floor, and even dressing himself with their assistance. Also due to his swimming, Harper shaves his legs and arms, usually once a week. He once tried applying No-Shave November to his entire body, but realized by the end of it that swimming wasn't the same with all that hair, and from then on only participated with facial hair.

Harper usual dressing style is casual with just a hint of "prep", stemming from his well-to-do background. He still shops at Hollister and American Eagle when he can afford it, and almost always wears flip-flops unless there is more than an inch of snow on the ground, in which case he will consider wearing sneakers. He always wears a shark tooth necklace, and is often seen with a pair of sunglasses perched on top of his curly hair.

Personality: Harper is a loud, blunt, often obnoxious, sometimes funny, happy-go-lucky jokester of a guy (or at least he likes to think so). Typically people find him a bit of an asshole, due to his off-the-hand, typically insulting remarks, along with his tendency to speak before thinking, yet he still has a charismatic charm that helps keep him out of too much trouble. He has a penchant for puns and bad jokes, often finding them hilarious and liable to blurt them out whenever he finds opportunity to, regardless of whether he has anyone's approval or not. Whenever he finds a really good one, he finds himself unable to keep the pun or joke to himself and will share it with the world out loud. He is present-minded, having little regard for the future or what it may hold and instead lives in the moment, milking each minute for what it's worth. This has landed him in many sticky situations, often with the local police. He is good at improvising, lying, and telling stories (real and fake, and both with much exaggeration), and talks quickly and expressively, usually with his hands. He curses often, and has a tendency to make up curses, which may or may not always make sense.

Harper doesn't like being told what to do, which has often been problematic in the job department. He enjoys making decisions for himself, good and bad, regardless of the consequences. He is impatient, hates waiting and is very efficiency-based, hating redundancies despite it being protocol. He's always had difficulty with writing and reading in particular, but school overall he found boring. He is a very tactile person, having made several mechanical animals with moving parts that double as music boxes without any prior training. While he has worked a lot with metal, lately he has been delving into wood, creating his own furniture out of scrap pieces he collects off the side of the road. However, much of what he makes he does for his own enjoyment, and hasn't been successful in selling any of his creations because he doesn't market himself. He has a love for motorbikes, often getting arrested for taking them out on joyrides. He also enjoys musicals, having gone to many when he still lived in NYC, and has many of the soundtracks memorized. He also enjoys pop-songs, and is a bit of a pop-culture junky himself. While he doesn't know how to play any musical instruments, he does have a good singing voice if he tries. His dancing isn't half-bad either. And, of course, he is a very strong swimmer, and takes a daily swim in the Boston Harbor every morning. He suffers from a crippling fear of heights, and as such has never traveled by plane, climbed a tree, or ridden any amusement park ride (except for carousels). He also doesn't do any sort of diving from more than 6 feet above the water.

Background: Harper is the oldest of two children born to two very affluent New Yorkers in the heart of Manhattan. His father is a lawyer and his mother inherited her father's business. Born into a socialite party, Harper learned manners and protocols at a very early age. He never had to worry about money, and was typically given whatever he wanted. His parents were rarely home, however, and he spent a large amount of time with his younger sister, Sadie, whom he adores to this day. His prowess for swimming and tinkering was evident ever since he was very young, however his father took the former more seriously and paid for a personal coach in hopes that Harper would compete professionally, perhaps in the Olympics. Harper performed very well in competitive swimming, participating in every year of his schooling and placing well in Regional competitions. However, although his schoolwork was always average, in high school his grades dropped severely, something that his parents were both unhappy about, particularly his father, who punished Harper by refusing to allow him to participate in swimming that year. This only caused his grades to drop more, and after he was rejected by every college he applied to, his father threatened him with military school when he was 17.

Scared, Harper ran away that night and took a train to Boston. He didn't contact his parents for four years, only calling Sadie. He lived in an "unbelievably crappy" studio apartment with cheap rent for most of his time in Boston, only recently upgrading to a "slightly less crappy" single bedroom. His on and off job has been working as a Chinese Take-Out Bicycle Delivery boy (since he has no car), and even though his boss has fired him multiple times, he has also rehired him just as many times because Harper, despite the numerous times he has had to bail him out of jail and his terrible backtalking, is still his fastest delivery boy, even on a bicycle. In the past year, he reconnected with his parents on accident after Sadie purposely steered him towards them during one of her cello concerts. The relationship has still been very shaky, but he now calls them every now and then and will begrudgingly speak with them when Sadie forces him to. Right now he is in New York City for another one of Sadie's concerts.

So begins...

Harper Calloway Fields's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Dorian Roberts Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Jason Carter
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Harper smirked to himself after giving directions to someone who clearly wasn't from New York City. Or possibly any city. But definitely from the south. "Y'all," he said aloud to himself as he waited briefly at a crosswalk, mimicking the tourist's accent, and promptly chuckled at the sound, "Y'all better git, ya hear?!" he continued, exaggerating into the stereotypical Texan drawl, and laughed even louder. That dude would be perfect for Oklahoma!

The curly-haired Manhattan native whistled the theme song to the musical as he crossed the street prematurely, heading towards the Starbucks on the opposite end. His dad was paying for his hotel room (so generous. much loving father. wow) which left Harper plenty of leftover cash to spend on other, more important things...like coffee. That was really the only other thing he had inherited from his dad besides his curly locks and straight nose: an addiction to caffeinated beverages that rhymed with toffee. But they differed, as always, when it came to drink preferences. While his dad always ordered his coffee black and downed it as such, Harper liked to experiment. And today seemed like a caramel frappucino day. Vente. With whipped cream.

As Harper waited for his ordered, he fingered the new addition to his shark tooth necklace: a small pearl ring he and Sadie had found at the bottom of the hotel pool. It had been Sadie who first spotted it, a slightly shiny speck at the deepest part of the deep end, and Harper had fished it out from the drain, which was actually frightening considering he had TV-marathoned Final Destination only two nights ago. The ring was too small to fit on any of his fingers, and he initially tried to give it to Sadie, but his sister gave it right back, saying that pearls were his birthstone, so it'd be better if he had it. Besides, she didn't like pearls anyways. "Only diamonds for this girl!" she had joked at the time.

"Well, diamonds are a girl's best friend," he mused aloud as he retrieved his drink.

"What?" the barista asked.

"I said thanks for the frappucino!" he shouted in response as he plucked a straw from the container, and traipsed out the store, slurping loudly, heading for Central Park. He hadn't been home-home in months, and the giant park was one of his most-missed locations. Besides the beaches and the pools, of course. Maybe he'd find another wedding to crash, like last time. Or get a photograph by that one dude who posted his photos on facebook...Harper followed that shit like crazy.

He made short work of the frap, and bought a handful of roasted chestnuts not long afterwards from one of the many street vendors along the path. Crunching his teeth on the hot nuts provided a much-needed warmth, especially after that iced drink.

He hadn't traveled too far when Harper suddenly heard a familiar accent. Turning, he spotted the very southerner who had asked him for directions not too long ago! Or...he spotted the back of the guy...at least he thought it was the guy...Whatever. It wouldn't be the first time he'd walk up to an utter stranger. Wouldn't the last either.

Stuffing the warm chestnut-filled paper bag in his letterman jacket, Harper turned right on the walking path, flip flops slapping the leaves as he neared the tourist. "Eyyyyyy!" he called out when he was only a few yards away, announcing his arrival, "Yo, you lost again? I don't remember what street you wanted, but I definitely know it wasn't in Central Park."

Now standing next to the flannel-wearing blond, and grinning, Harper first noticed the other male. Looked younger than him, but taller Darn. He looked to be a native though...if only through the dressing style. Then there was the blond girl...definitely shorter than me he thought with approval. After glancing between both of them, still smiling, he noticed they were looking down at something, and Harper followed their gaze.

"Ohhhh...." Harper said, "There's....yep, there's a girl on the ground. So that's what we're looking at." She....well, maybe she was from SoHo or something...one of those weird artsy students. I mean, look at that dress. And no shoes? Clearly she was into some tree-hugging major. I mean, it looked like she had just fallen out of a tree...heh...the treehugging was probably done without consent.

"Well," he announced, pulling his phone out, "As incredible and awe-inspiring as this sight is--I mean, it is New York City--we all probably have other things to do and weirder things to see, so uh...since your ankle looks all screwy I'll call you an ambulance, give your coordinates, and I think we can all go on our merry way."

The setting changes from aires to New York, Central Park

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Dorian Roberts Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Jason Carter
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Tallyho let out a rather unattractive groan; she pulled her brows into a tight furrow before relaxing her face, and opening her eyes only to see a gaggle of people who, in her option, were excessively frightening. The first person she took notice of was a pale, dark haired boy, whose voice was about as dead as the eye of a shark. She began to wonder if the chilly weather was just a result of empty air clawing out of the crevices of his soul. The next was a young man whose speech was drawn out and rather slow. She made an attempt to identify his accent—to figure out what part of Aires he was from—but because of her flustered state and the crowd of people hovering above her, she simply decided that his speech was too slow for comfort, and therefore pretty annoying in this particular moment. She grunted as his palm swept over her face and she turned away, claustrophobic and put off by his close contact. As an approaching blonde joined in on the “are you alright” chant, a loudmouthed man began to yodel something about an ambulance which, at this point, Tallyho hoped was a type of pastry chef because she was pretty pissed.

“I’m fine,” she grunted, voice soft but groggy. She tried to swat the slow speaking boy off of her as she sat up, though with her concussion, her gesture was probably likened to slapping him in the face with a wet noodle. After struggling to her feet, she took a long, hard look at each of the characters surrounding her. Well at least she thought she was staring them down. For all she knew, her eyes could have been zipping about from her dizzy spell.

Cold, hungry, angry, and with a concussion, Tallyho struggled to offer a thanks for their concerns, but managed to get it done through broken, slurred speech.

“Now where am I?” she asked, attempting to sound as polite as possible despite her discomfort.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Dorian Roberts Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Jason Carter
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#, as written by rikura
Jason's shoulders stiffened as he heard a familiar and annoying voice. The same voice of the annoying guy who he got directions from earlier. Seriously!? Seriously? After the guy stopped talking, Jason started to turn his head to give a smart reply, when he heard "I'm fine" and felt a full-handed sort of tap on his cheek. He blinked, looked back down at the girl, 'guess she is still with us, huh?' and then stood up and stepped back, giving her some room.

He watched as she pushed herself up shakily. 'Yeah, you sure look fine, sweetheart,' he thought sarcastically to himself as he started twisting the silver scorpion ring on his finger. He paused, raising an eyebrow as she tried to look intimidating... at least he thought she was trying to look intimidating. After hearing the slurs she gave, he really wondered if she was just some weird drunk, and when she asked "Now where am I?" he nodded to himself. 'Yeah, that's it... or she really hit her head.'

"You're in Central Park.... Do you remember how ya got here?" Though with how she was acting, he didn't think she remembered anything, and an earlier thought came back to him. 'Yeah, she's probably crazy...'

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Kyle Keaton Character Portrait: Dorian Roberts Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Jason Carter
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Harper snorted when the southerner got slapped...or tapped...by the SoHo chick. "See, that's what happens when we crowd people," Harper tutted, turning away to make his call, "Ya hear?"

He himself didn't hear the girl's questions or the tourist's response. Nor did he see the blond guy barrel into the tall and, now that he thought about it, somewhat intimidating yet familiar face that belonged to the dark haired dude. As he lifted his phone to his ear (he had decided to call the Central Park Medical Unit, since the bohemian girl didn't seem to be in too much of an emergency), he did notice the girl on a bench not too far away, a textbook on her lap. She was kind of cute...He gave a short wave to her, smiling widely, but he wasn't completely sure she had seen.

"Central Park Medical Unit. What's your emergency?"

"Uh, yeah, there's this girl who looks like she fell out of a tree," Harper explained, "Yeah, I think she maybe hit her head too hard." he turned back to glance at her before reaffirming, "Yeah, probably hit her head too hard. Oh and her ankle didn't look that hot either." He provided the coordinates of where exactly they were in the park and answered a couple other questions before hanging up.

"Good news, chica," he hollered to the injured girl, waving his phone, "Your ambulance is on its way! So just sit tight for like ten or fifteen or twenty minutes." He honestly didn't know how long it would take them...a girl who was still functioning after falling out of a tree probably didn't beat out a possible bicycle accident or an injured puppy or a cat or frisbee or kite stuck in a tree.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Jason Carter
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Tallyho stared in mild horror as the loud one began to speak to himself with his hand cupped onto his ear. It was when she heard the words, Central Park from the slow speaker that she attempted to place the location within a country. Such a place was not on Solace and besides, there was absolutely no way that she could be there with breezes so cold.

She began to think that she had been shipped to the R.K. Of course, it all made sense. She fell down the hill, a bunch of hermits took her to the piers, then shipped her off to the R.K where a tag team of disgruntled shipmen put her in a tree so that she could wake up and start her new life as a…

No. Maybe not.

“Thanks anyway,” the blonde mumbled, “I don’t need your am-bull-lances.”

Whatever those were.

With that, she began to make her way down the stony path. Her ankle was a little sprained, but it certainly wasn’t broken. As she moved away, she made a half-hearted attempt to clean herself up—to comb autumn leaves from her hair and shake dead grass from the frills of her dress. Though it would be her luck that in the middle of a mildly dignifying exit, she stepped on a stray pinecone, which, to be frank, hurt like hell. Holding in her outcry, she glanced back at the others to see if they noticed.

But what did it matter if they did? It wasn’t like they were particularly nonchalant when she fell out of the tree. Tallyho already looked (and felt) like a crazy fool. She was scruffy from a long, foodless journey in the Airian summer. Her face, though still fair, was lightly tinted with nature’s bronzer, applied through strong winds that sent loose dirt that dwindling in the air from erosion. Her locks were frizzy curls that expanded in the sun, dulled in the fall chills, and as ridden with small twigs.

She was capable of looking a little nicer, but since she was at her very worst, she really had nothing to lose. In an attempt to put herself out of her own, socially-awkward misery, she picked up her pace, avoiding maleficent pinecones as she went.

But something made her stop in her tracks. It wasn’t the searing heat from her amethyst or her desire to figure out what an am-bull-lance was, but rather the unsettling sound quaking from the tree she fell from. She eyed the trunk, watched as it tipped in slight movements that could only be noted if one paid special attention.

The setting changes from new-york-central-park to Aires

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Yuki Ryouta Character Portrait: Kyle Keaton Character Portrait: Dorian Roberts Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Jason Carter
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Yuki

Yuki’s serious and determined face hid the excitement that was burning inside of him, ready to take him over and cause him to explode. Studying in New York, in NYU for crying out loud, was an awesome experience, but studying Journalism was his dream. In high school, he worked his butt off preparing a suitable portfolio for his work, writing in the school newspaper and preparing a mix of photos he had taking over the years from different gigs and scoops he experienced. Now, he was in the big leagues, determined to make a name for himself. Getting through the dreaded Core Requirements was a bad enough roadblock to his path to success, but to be denied of a trip abroad because he was too young and didn’t take the required Journalism classes yet was a huge hindrance to him! Somehow, he got this crazy idea to go up to his professor for his Methods and Practice Visual Reporting class to talk about his situation. His professor saw that he was a determined kid and he said that there can be some leeway if he was ready to take the challenge. Determined, Yuki agreed and the professor suggested that he consult advising first, but that he was going to make a recommendation for Yuki to study abroad early. However, he had to make the best first class portfolio for his visual reporting course and bring together something more unique than a tragedy, comedy, or heartwarming story. If Yuki showed that he had potential through his project, maybe he could do a Journalism study abroad in the summer.

So then, why was Yuki at the Central Park when he had to come up with the portfolio that could determine his future? Well, it was his best place to think and his favorite area for photos. Central Park was picturesque, as though it was made for recording and photography. Yuki was excited about his chance and couldn’t wait to get started. However, where he should start is the question. To find something unique took a chance moment, and chance moment was what Yuki hoped would be in Central Park. He made sure to pack extra amounts of memory cards, his tripod, two journals, and of course his cameras for the hunt for the biggest scoop. Along the way, he decided to practice on some locals. Who knows, his big break could come from something ordinary and unexpected. So he filmed whatever he saw, hoping to get inspiration.

It was a fall afternoon and the leaves were rich in vibrant reds, glowing oranges, energetic yellows, and some vivacious browns. The park was bursting with activity left and right. Yuki took out his video camera without the tripod and set the memory card in place, ready to capture something that would help out his career. He sat down on top of the massive heaps of black rock that were in Central Park to get a good view from the top. Focusing his camera to the left, Yuki captured two little children’s climb to the top of another large mound. To his right, he captured a heated argument between a couple which ended in the lady pouring her bottle of water on her man—er ex—and storming away from the scene. Ladies and gentlemen, the typical New York lifestyle Yuki thought. Adventure in one corner and heartbreaks at another. C’mon, New York is supposed to have some excitement and uniqueness, what’s so unique about all this crud?

Suddenly Yuki heard some commotion near a tree and a leaf pile. He turned his camera and increased his focus to find a blonde girl with strange clothes and no shoes on the ground and people gathering around her. Yes! Some excitement! This is going to be golden. I better get closer...

Yuki climbed as fast as he could safely down the massive black rock and hurriedly got closer to the commotion. He crouched down behind a nearby bush and set up his little film studio, trying to conceal himself. Setting the tripod as low as possible and focusing on the scene, he witnessed a group of people helping the girl who seemed lost and confused. Yuki turned the sound up to try and listen into the situation. It seemed there was some sort of ambulance on the way and he hoped they wouldn't catch him in the bushes. While the situation was still on hold, Yuki took out his notepad and jot down some notes on the situation:

Incident in Central Park: A Damsel in distress
Subject is a female blonde, strange clothes, barefoot, a foreigner. Seems to have fallen from a tree and is lost and confused. Approximately four people aiding her...no wait five.

Yuki observed a man bump into one of the guys on the scene and covered his mouth to muffle his chuckle.

Ambulance on the way. Confusion and unknown situation. Persisting to observe to comprehend the situation.

Where this was leading to, Yuki couldn't know, but it was still something he can observe and something he can feed to his camera.

(OOC: Sources for some of the information here are:
https://journalism.nyu.edu/undergraduat ... sm-abroad/
https://journalism.nyu.edu/courses/2014 ... porting-2/ )

The setting changes from aires to New York, Central Park

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Falke der Herrscher
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Skylar had been lying to herself when she’d thought she’d be able to get a head start on her reading. She loved college, loved the independence it gave her and how she had the freedom to choose what classes she took, but these general education requirements would be the death of her. Who needed philosophy anyway?

Dragging her highlighter across the page in order to make it look like she was at least putting in somewhat of an effort, she let herself look up and take in everything that was going on.

An elderly couple slowly strolled down the path, arms looped together. A young mother wearing neon sneakers and leggings pushed a baby carriage with one hand and held the end of a dog’s leash in the other. And one of the teenagers from the group she’d noticed earlier was waving to her.

Skylar paused for a moment, glancing over her shoulder to see if there was anyone else the boy could have been waving to. No, he was definitely waving at her. Biting down on her lip, she waved back, not sure if she should do anything else.

Shortly after the cute boy waving incident (as she’d dubbed it in her mind), she was joined by another boy who gave her a short polite nod as he sat down. He too had a dog, and Skylar felt her smile widen at the sight. She debated on saying anything to him, after all he hadn’t said anything and he looked like he might have been resting, she didn’t want to bother him.

The setting changes from new-york-central-park to Aires

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Jason Carter Character Portrait: Falke der Herrscher
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Harper turned back towards the girl on the bench in time to see her wave back, which prompted a wide, admittedly silly grin to spread across his face. Biting his lower lip while still smiling, he slipped his phone into his back pocket, along with his fingers, and turned back towards the tree, contemplating his next move.

His thoughts were interrupted, however, when the white-dressed girl spoke, denying the ambulance. "Am...bull lance?" he repeated, wondering why she had pronounced it oddly. Before he could give it too much thought, the girl had already started to run off. "Hey!" he shouted after her, and grumbled to himself about stupid, artist, hippie tree hugger wannabes and their aversion to modern medicine. Still, there was the other girl....

He glanced back briefly, just to make sure she was still there, and then looked up to the sky. Whistling the theme from "Enchanted", Harper stepped backwards, hands still in the back pockets of his jeans, until he was just a foot away from the girl's end of the bench. Moving only his eyes (with just a small strain on his neck) he peered over her shoulder.

"Philosophy, eh?" he asked, hoping that was really what the textbook was about (he had only managed to catch the heading), "Is that what you're studying?"

The setting changes from aires to New York, Central Park

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson
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Slightly startled at the sound of someone talking to her, Skylar whipped her head around in the direction of the new voice. Her light eyes widened at the sight of the boy who'd waved to her earlier, lips involuntarily curling into a smile.

Get a grip, Grayson, she thought to herself, slightly embarrassed at how pathetic she was being. He's just being friendly, stop acting like him waving and asking you a question means that he's going to whisk you off into the sunset on his white horse.

Still, it was nice to be getting attention for once.

"Oh, definitely not," She replied with a laugh, closing the book after she'd decided that she was too distracted at this point to be productive. "It's a required course for my general education requirements, to be honest I usually like reading this before bed because it puts me to sleep. I'm actually a communications major."

She paused, mind suddenly drawing a blank as to what to say next. She wanted to keep the conversation going but she didn't want to come off sounding dumb. Too bad Kyra wasn't here, she was a pro at talking to boys.

"What about you? Are you a student?"

The setting changes from new-york-central-park to Aires

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Yuki Ryouta Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Gwenneth Yuan Character Portrait: Jason Carter
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#, as written by rikura
Jason's hands twitched as that annoying dude said "Ya hear?" He cut his eyes at the guy, whispering to himself in an annoyed tone, "I'll kill him. I swear, I'll..." He blinked, turning his head as he noticed someone at the edge of his vision. There was a girl there who looked like she'd just been thrown off a wild horse, especially with the tangled hair and the bruise... not that it made it any less obvious that she had an attractive face... Kind of made him curious, though. Homeless, maybe? He shook his head to clear it, looking away from her. "I kinda got a bad feeling for some reason..." he mumbled to himself.

And that's when he noticed the strange girl who fell out of the tree starting to move away. How he noticed? Well, because the annoying guy shouted, "Hey!" right next to his ear, causing Jason to flinch. 'Oh, thanks, because I actually like being deaf,' he thought sarcastically. He sighed, then blinked as he saw the girl striding away, "Ah! Hey, wait a sec-" He cut himself off as he saw her stop suddenly and she seemed to be... studying the tree?

He felt that little spark of curiosity in the back of his mind that usually, for him, meant 'step away, kid.' He shook his head to clear it again. 'Okay, this chick is seriously confused. Just forget about it. Don't get curious. Do not get curious! Walk away, go get the food, and go back to Aunt June's place.' He nodded to himself, 'Yeah, I'll do that.'

He took a few steps back and started to turn to walk the opposite direction from where the crazy girl was. When he turned, however, he finally noticed the heat on his finger that he'd been oblivious to up until now, so it sort of shocked him. "Ow, what the heck!?" He kind of jumped, doing a 180 on his heels, shaking his left hand back and forth. 'Seriously feels like a scorpion sting!' Not that it actually hurt...And he was back looking at the crazy girl again.

Twisting the ring on his finger as it burned against his skin, he sighed, defeated. 'And they say curiosity killed the cat.' A small grin formed on his face, as he, not realizing how silly that entire little bout of his probably looked, shrugged and thought out loud, "Well, at least a cat has nine lives."

Setting

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Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Yuki Ryouta Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Gwenneth Yuan Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Aria Delaine Character Portrait: Jason Carter
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The only sound that could be heard was the rustling of paper as Aria flipped a page of her book. The commotion of the outside could only be heard lightly. She was sitting behind a large mahogany counter with a novel sitting open. Though she should have been working her shift, the book store she worked at, A Novel Idea, was usually quite empty around this time. Lucky for her, it left some peace and quiet to catch up on some new novels. It was one of the reasons she loved working there, that, and the pun in the name of the store.

The silence was shattered by the tinkling of the bell on the front door. Aria lifted her blue eyes from the book to see her colleague, Nathan, stroll in. In his hands, he held two coffee cups and a small box of donuts. Nate came and occupied the other stool behind the counter, and set the drinks down. "For you m'lady," he said with mocking chivalry. "Why thank you," she replied with a smile. Cupping the drink, she took a sip and for a donut. Nate gave her hand a small slap, and slid the box of donuts closer to himself protectively. i didn't say you could have any," he teased. "They're all for me." After fixing him with a very adamant glare, he slid the box over to her and let her take a donut.

Munching on a donut, Nate leaned over and looked at the book. So what're you reading?" It took a moment for Aria to tear her attention away from the novel. "Oh, it's Eldest by Christopher Paolini." Isn't that like your seventh time reading that series?" Aria shrugged in return, and took another sip of her coffee. "I don't know, I lost track of how many times I've read it. It's just so good." "Whatever you say," he said with a smile. Nathan grabbed a stack of books off the counter and set about organizing them on the bookshelves.

This was pretty much how the rest of her time was spent. Aria helped a few customers, ate a few donuts, and conversed with Nate. When her shift ended for the day, Aria looked up at the clock and smiled. "My shift's over, I'm out." she said happily. "You sure you're gonna be okay closing up?" Nate smiled and walked over. "I'll be fiiiine, I don't know why you worry about me so much" After a pause, she shrugged. "Alright then, see you tomorrow." And with that, Aria grabbed her novel and left the store.

As soon as Aria stepped foot outside, she was hit with the brisk air of autumn. It wasn't necessarily freezing, but even the light chill made Aria cold. For some reason, she was very sensitive to the cold, and preferred the blazing heat of summer. As she walked down the street, she silently wished she had brought her coat. Even her outfit couldn't stop the cold.

On her walk home, she passed Central Park. She glanced down at the novel she had in her hands and shrugged. It wouldn't hurt to spend a little time in the park and read would it? She had a little time left before she had to get home. Making up her mind, Aria walked into Central Park. She had gotten more used to the cold now, but she hugged the book to her chest to get a little warmer. Her sapphire eyes scanned the park, and landed on a group of people surrounding a tree. Her first instinct was to go see what it was, but then she remembered that this was New York. When you see people suspiciously congregating around a tree, it was probably best not to go near them. But, she was still curious.

Aria inches closer to them, until she was just a few feet away, and could hear their conversation. Something about an ambulance? Someone must've gotten hurt. That was when a girl with wild blonde hair and a weird dress broke away from the group and started walking away, incidentally towards her. Aria side stepped, and watched as the others called out after her.

Aria wanted to ask them what was going on, but she felt a painful sting on her neck. She thought ignoring it would go away, but the burning was just growing in intensity. The pain came so quickly, she buckled to her knees. "Wow, way to not attract attention to myself..." She desperately felt around her neck to see what the source of the pain was. When he touched her necklace, her fingers recoiled. It was hot to the touch, as if it was on fire. She focused on the tree to collect herself and ignore the pain. It was working somewhat, and she stood back up. What was weird was the tree seemed to be vibrating or quaking. Maybe it was just her eyes tricking her. But something felt off about it.

The setting changes from aires to New York, Central Park

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Jason Carter
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Well, she hadn't told him to back off yet. That was a plus.

The student question had him stumped for a little bit. She was a stranger....he could really tell her anything. It was unlikely he'd see her again anytime soon. Then again, he had thought the same the last time he had lied about going to college, and it had cost him his relationship six months afterwards.

"Nah," he finally answered, leaning slightly against the arm rest of the park bench, hands still in his pockets, "College wasn't really my scene, ya know? I tried one semester at City College for engineering, but the structure was too suffocating," a little embellishment of the truth...he was accepted into City College on a swimming scholarship, but he never actually went.

"So, communications," he said, changing the subject back to her, "What's that...like, how we talk and body language and cell phones and things like that? Do you end up graduating as like a master communicator or something?" he laughed at his own joke and would have continued if he didn't hear a sudden yelp.

Turning, he saw the southerner jumping up and down, waving his hand. Leaning towards the girl, he whispered out the side of his mouth, "Do you suppose that's a form of communication? What do you think it means?"

The setting changes from new-york-central-park to Aires

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Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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“Engineering, huh? Sounds pretty intense, I don’t blame you.” Skylar did well enough in school but science was definitely not her forte. She didn’t know how her brother had survived med school (oh wait, yes she did- he was the one lucky enough to get the brains in the family).

She couldn’t help but grin at his definition of a communications major, shaking her head. “In a way, I guess so. I take a lot of public speaking and writing classes. Ultimately I want to work in public relations for a company- so basically covering the company’s ass whenever something scandalous happens and keeping the customers happy.”

Before she could open her mouth to answer his next question there was a startling crack followed by a loud crashing noise as the tree across the path fell. Startled, a soft yelp escaping her throat, as she tried not to fall off the bench.

“You know, it was great talking to you but I think I’m going to go.” Skylar said, shoving her book into her messenger bag. Trees didn’t just suddenly fall over and she wasn’t about to stick around in case it happened again.

As she stood up to leave she saw something that made her stop dead in her tracks- a black skeletal hand slowly emerging from the spot where the tree had once stood.

“Please tell me you see that too.” She whispered, unable to move or even drag her eyes away from the sight. It was at that moment that she felt a burning sensation coming from her neck, the pain sudden and stinging. Her hand flew to her neck to find the source of the pain, fingers recoiling as they brushed against the silver pendant her parents had given to her for her Sweet 16. “What’s happening?”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Yuki Ryouta Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Aria Delaine Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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Yuki looked on and the commotion and was starting to get bored again. The blonde damsel was leaving the scene and one of the first responders left for another girl to disturb the peace of reading a book. Typical flirt… he thought, rolling his eyes. Is there anything else to look at? I thought there would be some exciting shit going on!

Suddenly a girl fell to her knees, feeling pain on her neck. Yuki tried to focus on the girl to see the cause of pain, but can only see a necklace that she flinched from when trying to touch it. Afterwards, he felt an icy searing pain on his wrist where his bracelet was and immediately dropped down, losing his grip on the camera. It was as though his wrist was being encased in ice. Although it was an icy kind of pain there was a similar sensation of burning, as though it was a cold fire burning his skin. “Arggh!” Yuki grunted. “What the heck is this pain?”

Hearing a cracking noise coming from the tree made Yuki scramble to pack up the tripod and his camera before he missed another big excitement. He slipped his fingers zipping up his large black bag carrying the tripod and his other supplies before recording the fall of the great tree. He ran away from its direction but tried his best to position the camera towards it. His hands shook and he fell back from the impact of the tree, right next to the flirt, the reading girl, and the other silent guy next to them. Looking into the camera once more, Yuki noticed something peculiar. He focused his lens onto the strange object and beheld the sight of a skeletal hand coming out of the ground. He shook his head thinking his camera was busted from the fall and looked around. His own eyes can see the hand and it seemed the girl near him saw it as well since her eyes were fixated at it. He turned to the reading girl and focused the camera on her face, not really knowing what else to do but to get witnesses for the strange phenomena.

“Looks like thriller is on the loose girl. What’s your name and how do you make of this pre-apocalypse situation?”

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Character Portrait: Yuki Ryouta Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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Initially, Harper thought the tree falling, though odd, might have been the fault of the SoHo Bohemian chick. For whatever reason...he supposed that would make her more of a tree-murderer then...well, actually, those roots still looked intact and hoLY SHIT WHAT WAS THAT?!

"Oh, I see that," Harper answered, already moving away, "And that is my cue to leave....no investigating shenanigans for this white boy, no sir."

Without waiting for a response, he turned around, nearly bumping into some weird Asian with a camera, ducked around and started running, ignoring the paths. He did wonder briefly if maybe he should have grabbed the girl's hand and taken her with him, but he dismissed the thought. She was in college. Studying communications. It shouldn't take her that long to realize she'd need to hightail it out of there. And if she didn't manage to escape whatever was connected to that scary looking black claw hand thing...well, at least she'd never find out he had lied about City College.

Something hot flared around the v of his collarbone. Instinctively he reached towards it, and immediately his fingers seared with heat, causing him to shout out loud. He barely managed to pull his fingers away when something dull bounced off the side of his head. Disoriented and dealing with two different pains, his feet forgot how to move properly and he fell over. When his brain started working again he realized he had interrupted a game of frisbee.

"Punks!" he shouted as he got back to his feet, rubbing his head where the disk had hit him, fingers still sore, "Watch what you're doing!"

"You're the one who ran in the middle of us!" one of the players yelled back, the other player retrieving the frisbee, "What, the rest of central park ain't enough room for you to run around? You have to run directly in between us? Idiot!"

"What, you've got this one area specifically reserved for you two?" Harper shot back, voice pitching in volume, "I don't see any names on this grass! I can run wherever the hell I want here and right now I decided I wanted to run through here!" Harper flicked the bird at both of them, "Frickin' Morons!"

"What you say? WHAT you say?!"

"You heard me, dipshits!"

The tempers flared and voices escalated, and as the three men yelled at each other, Harper momentarily forgot what he was running from again.

The setting changes from aires to New York, Central Park

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Character Portrait: Yuki Ryouta Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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And just as quickly as he’d appeared, the boy Skylar had been talking to was gone, not even bothering to make sure that she was alright. Jerk.

She frowned, brows furrowed in frustration. She was mad not just at him but at herself for enjoying the attention so much.
Skylar was snapped out of her thoughts by another new voice, this one belonging to an Asian with a camera. What was with all these people talking to her today?

“What’s it to you?!” She snapped back in response, not in the mood to be interrogated about the freaky tree incident. “Not so close, buddy.”

The setting changes from new-york-central-park to Aires

Setting

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Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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It was only a few seconds ago when the cyclopean was only a hand out, and Tallyho was admittedly frightened when it was nearly out of the hole. She increased her distance by a great amount, picking up pinecones as she moved back.

Luckily for her—and technically everyone else—the creature clawed itself out of the ground facing the opposite direction and had no clue about the humans behind it. Tallyho took that opportunity to perch behind the fallen tree as she cradled pinecones in her dress.

She made silent gestures towards the others, shooing them away. Her plan was to lead it away from the group until she ran into a really good trapper. Hell, if this town couldn’t even purify their land, did they even believe in trappers?

What a bunch of naturalist hippies.

The creature, for the most part free, knelt over and it yanked its spindly feet from the soil. It was about nine feet tall—much taller than a considerably tall man—and its teeth cracked and clicked as it adjusted its jaw.

Tallyho rolled her eyes. She hated the way they looked—their mocking grin and large, protruding heads.

She kept herself focused, but struggled to find a time to lead it away. Were her legs ready? She felt them falling asleep.

She decided to count backwards from ten.

“10…”

She wondered if there were any fools still hanging around. She told them to run, she warned them.

“9...”

The onyx beast let out a piercing screech. It wasn’t too deep or too high, but somewhere in the middle and rather uneven. Almost like its voice box danced on the ridges of ripped paper and the threads of torn cloth—just like a freaking prepubescent boy—Tallyho hated those.

“8...”

Its mossy teeth clicked once more, and its knees cracked as it shifted its weight—a well-deserved stretching session from being tightly enclosed in the ground for so long.

“7…”

The pitch of its screech grew higher—a siren—as it bashed a clawed fist into the ground, barely missing its own foul toes. Oh, the heinousness!

“6…”

The monster—a sensitive creature—could feel the fear of humankind knocking against his back like an unknown visitor in the night. Tallyho, coming to terms with the fact that some of the people probably didn’t listen to her and were still standing there, had to prepare herself.

“…Ah, shh—, 1.”

Tallyho, deciding that she didn’t need what might have been the last few seconds of her life, jumped into action. She shot up from behind the tree and yanked the first pinecone from her foliage arsenal before chucking it.

“Cyclopean! I hear you like a chase? Come on, boy. Come here,” she jeered condescendingly. The cyclopean, enraged by being hit by a projectile turned to her and unleased one of its signature high pitched screeches.

Tallyho threw another pinecone to secure herself as a target. When it began it’s lunge, she immediately dropped her pinecones, yanked a sizable branch off of the tree, then made a mad, clumsy dash in the other direction, plowing past any people who chose to stick around.

She wasn’t worried about them. Cyclopean were stupid—they preferred moving targets—and oh great, something she remembered from school.

“Now how do I kill it?”

She ran for a little while when she realized that she sorely underestimated her task. There she was making a fool of herself again, breathless by the time she passed the big-mouthed yodeling guy from earlier. Her knees grew weak, but the cyclopean was still on her trail.

“Don’t you people have any trappers,” she heaved as she threw her head back in exasperation. The breeze from running consumed her swan-like neck. The cold was stabbing her joints.

She barreled into one of the benches, nearly planting her face into a seat before throwing herself away and stumbling into the grass a wheezing mess.

She heard the cling of metal and looked up to see it lodged in the bench she crashed into moments before—twisting and welting its contours into the metal and by consequence, getting its head wedged in between the bench’s back and seat. But it didn’t look like it would take long for it to pry itself free. The bolts at the bottom of the bench were breaking. Tallyho, having had her heroic deed of the day sizzle out in vain, having knees blushed from tumbling and a face red from panting like a dog in an Ira desert, remained in the grass, no longer motivated to avoid the fact that somebody, or everybody, was going to be its dinner.

Setting

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Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Gwenneth Yuan Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Falke der Herrscher
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It was very nearly quiet enough this morning in the Central Park of New York, that Falke thought he might be able to fall asleep. Of course, that was if one imagined the occasional flick of a page of the book the girl on the other end of the bench was reading, the timpani of honking cars and the living, breathing city surrounding the green swath of lawn to be little more than the whisper of static background noise. But he could do so, if he let himself wonder in thoughts, letting daydreams turn into dreams rather alarmingly quickly. And that wasn't exactly the short of "out of the apartment" adventure he'd been planning for this morning, or rather want to explain to his parents if he got mugged, or jumped Lord forbid, while he was snoozing. So, he kept himself awake, alert but relaxed for now. Until the time he got bored, and/or his leg's started to fall asleep, then he'd get up and head back 'home' to be waiting for his parents like he'd hadn't been gone.

It was only when he started to get uncomfortable, and debating about getting up, that sounds of commotion started echoing around him. First, was something coming out of the bush, further along the path but still close enough for him to hear the gigantic rustle of creaking limbs and little leaves flying all over. What the? It was entirely too big to be a stray cat or dog, or one those huge rats that were as big as dogs that supposedly lurked in the alley-ways all over the City - he'd heard that from the door-man of the Apartment the other afternoon, his father said it was a silly rumor New Yorker's liked to brag about and Falke honestly doubted it himself. Rats as big as dogs? No way. And this sound was bigger, and unfortunately even at this distant, the smell came to his sensitive nose of unclean, greasy, and for some reason, 'person'. Ahh, one of those stray persons that lurked in the alley-ways with the rats... Wait? What? No, not stray person. What was the word again? There were stray cats, stray dogs, giant rats, and-... Er, oh, Homeless people! That was it. He shook his head with a repressed sigh at himself, for his lack of political correctness in the English language. Easing the tension out of his shoulders, that had popped up at the first sign of disturbance near him, after recognizing the potential of 'threat' as nothing more than losing a few cents perhaps if she or he came his way. He relaxed again, even when distantly hearing some conversation involving Americans that didn't sound like native New Yorkers, something about a girl in a tree, etc. It wasn't his concern, or really anywhere nearby him that he should be concerned about it. Another person came walking up, steps steady and purposeful, and Falke didn't tense up like he had for the homeless coming out of the bush earlier (he could hear this person coming from a bit away at the very least, and it certainly wasn't a 'sudden' noise). The other, a he he could tell now by his deeper voice, flirting with the girl on the other side of the bench he also currently resided. While it was fair to say that it was common all over, it was equally fair to say that this was more than just common in New York since he'd stepped off the plane. It was likely due to the high volume of people stuffed in one area, he assumed. But still... It was a little uncomfortable listening to it going on right beside him. Jealous was he? No, not really. His sharp, angular features were hardly attractive, and his blind eyes well, they sort of killed the date-able material right at the start. He ignored them as best he could, tightening his grip on the leash when Otter started whining for some reason. Likely, wanting to go lick off their faces, as dogs often tended to do.

It happened so quickly, even his strong sense-sensitivity with his hearing had a hard time keeping up. The conversation he'd so blandly ignored early, had heightened in volume and in earnest. What sounded like a tree falling down, roared in his ears, followed by (he assumed the even odder sounding girl, maybe the one that had been in the tree perhaps, didn't even sound American at all) that commands of a girl - "Go... Run..." Or, something like that. A feathery brown eyebrow raised to be seen over the rim of his 'sunglasses', nostrils flared uncertainly. He tilted his head to share a look in the supposed general directions of the happenings, and then glanced toward the two that-... Well, had been there moments before, but had suddenly taken off for some reason. He didn't have to wait long for an explanation as a sudden screech sounded off from the same direction, he had to fight hard not to shudder at the high alien sound and didn't bother to hide his wince and the shaking of his head trying to rid the ringing going on in his ears. What in the world was that? Otter had slipped out from under the bench, frantically pulling on his leash - barking sharp and fast like false machine gun fire you'd hear in those game stores, movies, and the like. The dog never barked, not even at a cat or the postal-man. Common sense flooded his thoughts, aligning with his Fight or Flight mechanism and picking most definitively flight over staying around all 'this', whatever this was. And he trusted the dog far more with his life than anyone else, save perhaps his mother. Unsteadily he rose from his seat on the bench, wobbling slightly until his legs had feeling returned to them, so he could just leave all this frightening nonsense behind. Another screech sounded off, and Otter suddenly yelped, ducking sideways and bolting, taking Falke with him out of the way. Just in time as something small crashed into the bench he'd been sitting at for a moment before darting or really rolling off near his own feet in the grass, and then something rather impossibly large, the thing those screeches were, crashed into the bench as well. He could hear the metal itself warping, groaning, and screeching it's own metallic pain, amongst the alien screeches of some great beast. Otter had begun barking again, snarling intermittently, warning whatever is was off but really Falke thought it drawled a little too much attention for his liking. Good grief, what was going on? "Otter," He begged. "Come on!" Tugging on the leash, as he took a few steps backward, attempting to flee much like everyone else - even if he couldn't quite run as successfully as most, he'd still walk out of here just fine if he could get the darn dog to come along...

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Kyle Keaton Character Portrait: Dorian Roberts Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Jason Carter Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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As it turned out, Dorian was far from the only person in New York concerned however mildly with someone else's well-being. He watched in growing discomfort as others began to swarm around the girl in her bed of leaves(well, as much swarming as three people could do, anyways), attracted to the incident like flies to honey. The first was a boy who slipped by Dorian without so much as a glance, instantly crowding the girl, checking her over with an inexperienced eye. Even before he opened his mouth, all uncertain words and a distinctly Southern accent, Dorian had him pegged as a tourist from his flannel shirt to the fact that he was willingly invading the space of someone who had not only managed to climb one of Central Park's tall trees, but also to fall without so much as a scratch. The next person- a girl this time dressed all in dark clothes- arrived just as suddenly, hovering slightly away, but still asking the same question that had already been asked, offering help. Another tourist. Dorian was getting good at this guessing game. The last one was certainly the most welcome because, despite his apparent tendency to narrate whatever he saw, he was taking care of the scene with the same disinterest mixed with practicality that Dorian could appreciate.

But the girl was fine enough for all of their concern(however mild that may have been on Dorian's own part), climbing unsteadily to her feet and staring them down with a hazy gaze and a strangled out thank you that spoke wonders of just how disoriented she was. With an ambulance being called and two other people willingly answering her questions, Dorian prepared to slip off, his role in this little scene hopefully done. Going to Central Park, he decided as he began to step away, wasn't always the best idea. Who knew what sort of strange characters you'd end up meeting? Like the strange character who promptly barreled into Dorian. As Dorian let out an "oof" at the impact, stumbling back a few steps, his mind couldn't help but half-heartedly add, 'this would never have happened if you'd just stayed home today.'

Dorian's accidental assailant went sprawling on the grass, somehow more stunned by the impact than Dorian himself but only for a moment before hopping to his feet, dropping a dirt-encrusted bag, and putting up his dukes like Dorian had been the one to carelessly throw himself into him instead of the reverse. Dorian was unamused, uninterested, and, above all, unimpressed. The two were like opposites, Dorian towering over the wannabe fighter by almost a foot, even with the other boy standing after his little fall. His face was a mess, a black eye and a split lip visible under his ratty blue baseball cap, so obviously this wasn't a one time "let's fight people" occurrence, a far cry from Dorian's own neat and calm appearance.

"Excuse you," Dorian deadpanned, staring down at the boy critically. It wasn't meant to look particularly mean or threatening, but Dorian was cursed with features that made nearly everything look intimidating regardless of his own intentions. Also, yes, he was mildly pissed off. There was a moments pause, the other boy still staring at him fiercely.

"Look, what do you-" the demand died mid sentence because, as it turned out, Dorian had bigger problems than a slightly insane guy with a thing for starting fights. That would be bigger problems both literally and figuratively in the form of a tree being uprooted. This was weird, even for New York. Also dangerous, again, even for New York as the large tree went careening downwards at a remarkable speed right towards the other guy. Dorian had a choice then, a choice to either run away, like a normal person, or to put himself willingly in danger for a person he didn't know nor care about. It only took him a split second to decide.

Dorian tackled the other boy to the ground, pushing both of them out of the tree's descent and rolling in the grass and out of harms way. But Dorian didn't have time to worry about grass stains, however, because no sooner did he look up from his position sprawled above the other boy than something happened that he couldn't quite explain. Someone- no, something- was crawling out of the dirt, all skeletal claws and exaggerated proportions, reptilian skin and fangs, not teeth, fangs. It was like something that had stepped out of a horror story, a sci-fi monster from another world that couldn't possibly exist by any stretch of the imagination. But it did- it did exist, it was there right in front of him. And, perhaps the most disturbing thing was that the girl- the stoner or crazy or whatever she was was leading it away, trapping it somehow. This couldn't be real, it shouldn't be real, but the noise, the smell, the strange, warm sensation on his wrist where his bracelet was- all of the evidence pointed to this scene not being a figment of his nightmares, but to an even more horrific reality.

The setting changes from aires to New York, Central Park

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Aria Delaine Character Portrait: Falke der Herrscher Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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An unearthly shriek interrupted Harper's heated argument, and as he turned back to see, a blur of white flashed a few yards in front of him, followed closely by a larger blur of black. He thought he heard a question thrown into the air, but the next sound he could comprehend was a metallic clang. Blinking, he saw that the giant...thing...had lodged itself into one of the park benches. But not for long, it didn't seem...

A girl suddenly ran up and hit the thing with a branch. The monster squealed in response, thrashing to be rid of the park bench.

"I think she's got the right idea," Harper heard one of the frisbee players say.

"She's just making it madder," Harper retorted. Suddenly he felt a slight gust brush past his ear, and a blur of orange whizzed through the air. It took Harper a couple seconds to register that one of the other two had thrown the frisbee, which now smacked the beast on the side of its throat before bouncing off. A loud screech was the end result, followed by even more thrashing and pulling against the weight of the bolted down park bench.

"Why the hell did you do that??" Harper shouted at the guy who had thrown the disc, "This thing looks like it came out of Alien! What makes you think a frisbee--"

"Well, I just thought--"

A dry grating sound prevented from Harper hearing what the stupid guy thought, and a glance showed that the thing had freed itself, and its head turned towards them.

"RUN!" all three of them screamed, but Harper realized quickly from the earthshaking stomps that the beast was following after them.

"Split up!" Harper shouted at the other two, hoping at least one of them would distract the monster from him. They must have been thinking the same (at least for themselves), and they both veered off in opposite directions. Harper himself stayed straight, heading for the road.

His luck didn't hold, as the heavy footsteps kept following after him. "Shit," he muttered to himself breathlessly. The monster sounded closer...he could hear its breathing. If he reached the road, a car could hit the creature, but that was only if he reached it...a probability that was quickly dwindling.

Changing gears, Harper turned sharply to his left, towards the lake. Sprinting as hard as he could manage, he charged towards the water front. Only a few seconds away he pulled off his jacket (a bitch to swim in) and flung it behind him, willing to risk its sentimental value if it distracted the stupid...whateveritwas, and launched himself off the gravel, shallow-diving into the frigid water. Years of swimming in the Boston Harbor, even in the winter, had given him somewhat of an immunity to the shock of cold water, and he desperately pulled himself underwater away from the shore, sticking to the bottom of the lake for as long as his lungs could hold.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Yuki Ryouta Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Aria Delaine Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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Yuki was thrown aback by the audacity of the girl. He had to shift focus on his camera back a bit before her sassy face took up the whole screen.

"Oh excuse me if you don't enjoy the limelight!" Yuki yelled back. “Or maybe you don’t like being in Sci-fi! Maybe you like being in pornos with random guys on the street! Well I ain’t making that kind of stuff so forget you girl!”

Rather than deal with someone that doesn’t want him filming at the moment, Yuki would rather use his camera to film something that wouldn’t care less about whether he’s watching them or not. After "flirt who can possibly star in the girl's porno" bumped him and ran off somewhere, some strange creature clawed out of the ground. That crazy no shoes girl was back and Yuki was catching her every move. She was hiding behind a tree with something in her dress, eyeing the monster carefully and making shooing gestures at anyone that was standing near the area.

Yuki caught the whole scene in his camera: the petrifying screech of the monster, the pinecone throwing, the chase, and the bench warming—or rather bench smashing—by the monster and its victim. He had to run here and there to keep up and take a good shot without attracting the monster. The blonde victim rolled onto the grass but the monster was lodged into the bench, with the metal screeching and the wood creaking as the monster struggled for a way out of its prison. Suddenly a girl charged toward the monster, branch in hand, and wacked the monster with as much force as she could!

“Damn girl!” Yuki shouted amazed by the girl’s bravery. “You stupid if you think a branch is gonna kill that thang!” Still he had to admit it was some stupid courage the girl had. He was the one just filming the whole thing as if he was the newscaster for Central Park. Suddenly, that thought gave him an idea. THIS would be the project! It was something unnatural! Aliens? Or something else. But whatever! This might be his ticket to his Journalism study abroad! Yuki had to get more information about what was going on, but in order to do that, he had to figure out what that thing was and well…it probably has to die first of all. Then it occurred to him. That blonde chick that was playing the victim was calling out to it…calling it something. Cyclopathia? Cyclops? Cyclosomething? That chick has the answers!

Suddenly a disk came flying toward the monster's throat! Yuki looked in the direction it came from and sighed in disbelief. "Okay I thought the girl was stupid...but she's smarter than those guys who think they can kill it with that weak flying saucer." He had to turn his camera when the monster started chasing the guys, causing one of them to take off his jacket and dive into the lake. "*insert screaming girls because some dude took off his jacket and ran off to the lake.* Okay this is getting stupid. I better get to that chick.."

Yuki hurried over to the blonde girl catching her breath with the camera focused on her. He was wondering whether he should take out his notepad, but he’d rather film the girl if he was going to get some proof of witness.

“Hey you, I know you got something to do with this. What’d you call that thing? Cyclopath or something? You better start explainin!" Yuki asserted, camera all focused on the girl ignoring the fact that she might have been injured.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Gwenneth Yuan Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Falke der Herrscher Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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Gwen had never experienced a hallucination before. How was it that saying went? You're not crazy if you think you might be. While Gwen certainly categorized the events unfolding before her eyes as unreal, she was slightly put off by how realistic it seemed. Was it possible that one could be conscious of their insanity and yet be unable to control their distorted perception of reality? What was happening? The shudder of the earth as the tree hit the ground, the hideous sight that emerged from the dead space beneath, and the unearthly sounds that rang through the air; she didn't know how to make sense of it. If it was a hallucination and she acted, would she end up being one of those schizophrenic murderers, doomed to spend her life institutionalized and drugged? Or would failure to act result in her getting hurt?

What were the others doing around her? Erupting into chaos, apparently. Falling, running, descending into a mess of noise and movement impossible to follow. How could everyone react so confidently? That is, assuming that these people were actually there and not delusions. Though, they all had the right idea. Running was the most logical course of action, especially in Gwen's situation. She wouldn't put anyone in danger by doing so. It seemed, however, that not everyone had the same idea.

Gwen watched as the creature chased a thin, barefoot woman in roughly Gwen's direction. She and the others on a nearby bench scattered; Gwen herself dove out of the way as the creature impacted with the previously occupied bench. Even through the pain of hitting the ground and the sound of twisting metal from the collision, Gwen imagined herself, a lonely, broken body throwing itself to the ground in the middle of a quiet scene in Central Park. She should run--or at least walk away quickly. It was time to leave.

She stood just in time to see some kid throw a Frisbee at the creature. Really, again? This wasn't a movie. Life didn't work like a story. Heroics weren't always all they were chalked up to be. Heroics didn't make you a hero; they got you killed. She watched as the Frisbee thrower immediately regretted his decision and ran away in a panic, which in Gwen's mind was the appropriate reaction. But her stomach immediately dropped as the three in the vicinity of the Frisbee thrower split up, and the creature began to chase the wrong person. This was what was wrong with heroics. It wasn't even that it killed the wannabe "hero;" others suffered for the stupidity of their actions, and to Gwen there was no worse offense. She had to help that kid.

She wasn't as fast as either the monster or the young man it chased. The distance between her and the two seemed to close at an unbearably slow rate, as though the world was in slow motion. And yet, it seemed to take no time at all until she was dangerously close. She slid to a stop as the creature splashed in the shallow water, apparently confused if its body language was at all similar to the animals she knew. She didn't get any closer; she didn't need to be that near.

She reached her right hand into the neckline of her sweater and down to her left shoulder. It clasped metal, and she withdrew a small dagger, only a few inches in length. Both she and her weapon were enormously outsized by their opponent, yet before she knew it her arm was drawing back and preparing to throw. Remember what you were taught. The thought flashed briefly through her mind, but she couldn't think, there was no time. Driven by muscle memory alone, the small piece of metal flashed through the air and toward the monster.

It hit the creature directly in the back of its deformed skull. Gwen experienced a moment of victory as she witnessed its trajectory playing out exactly where she aimed it. She was treated to an unpleasant surprise when it merely bounced off the skull and flew directly into the lake. She took a step back. Shit. Who was the idiot now? Another step. The creature turned slightly. Fuck. What was it she had just been thinking about heroics? Gwen turned and ran, more or less back in the direction she came. Better late than never. Actually that wasn't true. Late was getting her killed. She heard the heavy footfalls now gaining on her. She had a head start, but as she had already discovered, she was no match for the monster's speed. And Gwen had no escape plan.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Aria Delaine Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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#, as written by Linnea
"Yeah... no problem." Somehow, Autumn managed to respond to the girl she had saved. This in itself was a great feat, considering she found it impossible to move. She was just fortunate that the beast wasn't facing her. Now was her chance. She could run. She could get out of here. If only her feet would cooperate.

Gathering courage, she managed to take a few more steps back. She slowly backed away, eyes locked on the monster. For a moment, she thought she would manage to escape. This thought was quickly dispelled as the beast screeched and slammed a fist against the ground, sending a shiver up Autumn's back.

Her entire body, save the skin where her ice cold necklace touched, felt numb. It was if she was weighed down, incapable of doing anything but stare and prepare herself for her death. Then came her savoir, the blonde from the tree. She lobbed pinecones at the monster fearlessly, taunting it and then picking up a branch. The girl seemed to know what she was doing, much to Autumn's relief. This was only momentary, however, as Autumn realized that the girl was tiring.

The beast flung itself into the metal bench, providing a moment for anyone to either run or attack. Autumn chose to run. At least, she would if her legs would listen to her.

Her chance was soon ruined as the beast freed itself. The Frisbee was a valiant effort, though proved fruitless. As did the dagger. At this point, Autumn was fairly sure she was going to die.

The setting changes from new-york-central-park to Aires

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Yuki Ryouta Character Portrait: Kyle Keaton Character Portrait: Dorian Roberts Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Gwenneth Yuan Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Aria Delaine Character Portrait: Jason Carter Character Portrait: Falke der Herrscher Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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If Dorian had expected a pleasant response for tackling someone out of the way of a falling tree, he would have been sorely disappointed, emphasis on the sorely, by the other boy's reaction. He swore, rolling off his assailant and staggering to his feet in one less than fluid movement, right hand clasped over his nose to stem the flow of gushing blood. Drops of crimson already decorated the green grass beneath his feet, painting dead leaves in a macabre fashion. It was only the most pressing injury because, damn, the other boy could pack a punch, even when flailing wildly as he had been. The teen didn't have time to nurse his wounds, however, because there was something that needed his attention more than a possibly broken nose. Monsters, apparently, had that impact on people by making their everyday problems seem minuscule in comparison because, yes, his father not showing up for dinner was upsetting, but not more so than, say, some sort of Eldritch abomination killing him.

The scene had continued to play out when Dorian had been more preoccupied with his own issues. People were scattering to the wind, doing the normal thing, the smart thing in running away, taking off in all directions to save themselves. Others were not, and he wasn't even sure why he was surprised. There was a boy waving a camera around in such a way that reminded Dorian of a mix between an insane paparazzo and those found footage mockumentaries. He was with two of the girls left- the tree girl who, as it turned out, was probably less insane than the rest of them for staying if only because she apparently knew what was going on, and another. Others dotted around the park, either frozen with fear or grasping clumsily for weapons, and there was a dog barking somewhere, but Dorian's attention remained fixated on the immediate problem.

The monster, unbidden, had broken free of the bench that had seemed like such a good trap only minutes before when the metal had twisted forcefully around the creature, pinning it within. Now it was continuing its rampage, but it had a target now, or, rather, the predator now had the perfect prey. Dorian hadn't seen what led up to the fixation the monster had on the girl, but it made a sort of horrific sense. She wasn't in the best shape- that much was obvious even from a distance, too frail, almost sickly looking- and her pace was slowing with each step, or perhaps the monster was just increasing speed. Easy prey. It was looming over her now, and, for the second time that day, Dorian was faced with a choice. He exhaled, pulling a now blood-stained hand away from his nose and groping in his pockets. Keys, phone, wallet… there. He found what he wanted- a pocketknife, another gift from his father. It wasn't incredibly large and certainly wasn't meant to cause harm, especially since he primarily used it to snip off loose threads on clothes, but it was large enough and definitely sharp. He clasped it in his hand, unfolding the blade. Choice made. He apparently didn't have a good track record for making choices today.

Dorian ran then, each step punctuated by a pulsating warmth emanating from his bracelet that he didn't have time to worry about, gradually picking up speed as he sprinted into death's grip with only a hope, a prayer, and a knife on his side. The monster was even bigger up close making even Dorian feel small in its shadow, but he couldn't worry about that now. Now he could only worry about his aim, as he stumbled into the monster's path, dug his feet into the ground, and, with a shout and in one swooping motion, buried his knife into the creature's chest. It went in surprisingly smoothly, and he could see blue blood oozing from the wound, intermingling his his own red covered hands. He looked positively feral then, blood staining his face, knife buried to the hilt in the monster, teeth gritted with the effort of twisting it and digging it in deeper. This was not how he expected his day to go.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Tallyho Abel Character Portrait: Yuki Ryouta Character Portrait: Isabelle Gentile Character Portrait: Kyle Keaton Character Portrait: Dorian Roberts Character Portrait: Autumn Jones Character Portrait: Harper Calloway Fields Character Portrait: Gwenneth Yuan Character Portrait: Skylar Grayson Character Portrait: Aria Delaine Character Portrait: Jason Carter Character Portrait: Falke der Herrscher Character Portrait: Cyclopean
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Harper had broken the surface in time to see something bounce off the monster and splash into the lake. A second later the monster had turned around and was chasing someone else, away from him. He gave an enormous sigh of relief, sinking just a little in the water.

His curiosity piqued about whatever had fallen into the water...it didn't look like a frisbee since the splash was so small. Ducking underwater, a familiar stinging hitting his eyes, Harper swam to the spot where it looked to have landed. Oblivious to whatever was happening above land, he finally found what looked to be the shaft of a knife sticking up from the muddy bottom. Retrieving it, he realized it was indeed the shaft of a knife, with the blade still attached to it. Small, but well-crafted it looked. He hadn't gotten a good look at whoever had thrown it so....finders keepers? Briefly he imagined the look on Sadie's face if she found out he had stolen someone's knife. If she found out...and he hadn't actually stolen it. The person had lost it in the lake...

Lungs reminding him he needed to breathe, he resurfaced. He was wary of returning to the shore, scanning the park. A ways off he saw a black mass fall to the ground, still, before shattering. "Well, good thing that's taken care of," he said outloud, "Stupid aliens should know not to mess with us Earthpeople!" Deciding it was safe to return to land, Harper swam to the shore, his jacket still on the ground, relatively unscathed. Hauling himself out of the water, he shook himself like a wet dog, water from his clothes and locks spraying everywhere. Picking up his jacket and pulling it over his shivering self, he held up the knife he had found and opened his mouth to ask for its owner.

An intense heat interrupted him, blossoming yet again from the same place it had before. With a shout, Harper dropped the knife. This time wrapping his fingers with his wet shirt, he looked down for the source of the pain. He was startled to realize it came from his shark-tooth necklace, and even more surprised to find the exact source was from the pearl ring he had found earlier that day!

"Stupid, cheap piece of plastic," he muttered, struggling to untie the wet cord behind his neck. It took him a few minutes of useless fumbling before he remembered he still had a knife. It was when he turned to relocate it that he finally noticed the whiteness closing in. His eyes widened, and he quickly grabbed the knife before running away from the erasing, panicking. What was this? Some sort of alien thing? Had he stayed in the water too long and not realized it? Was he dying? Was this a trick?

His feet couldn't carry him fast enough, and in an instant white surrounded him entirely...

He hadn't realized he had closed his eyes until he opened them, and was startled by the darkness.

"That's it. I'm definitely dead..." he said out loud. He wasn't even sure how he was standing...looking down, he only saw more darkness. Yet as he kept looking, small pinpricks of light glowed below his damp flipflops, and then spread, creating what looked like a bridge of light. Closer inspection revealed what looked like an ocean, waves rolling not too far below them. When he looked up he noticed the others from the park, standing around and looking just as confused.

A voice started talking, speaking of warriors and gemstones and cyclosomethings. Words that flew over his head until the very end, when she spoke about their "destinies". When she finished speaking, he frowned. Commit to being monthly warriors on the basis of an attempt to suppress those beasts? Not even obliterate or wipe out, but suppress...meaning they'd still be around. And there were supposed to be more of them in this other place?

This had to be a trick. Had to. Some sort of trippy thing, maybe an amusement ride or simulation, where they needed random people's opinions. It was New York after all. It wouldn't surprise him.

What did surprise him was when one of the girls announced she was 'going home' and then walked towards the other world. What was she, crazy?! Squinting, he realized that it was the same girl who had fallen out of a tree, so...yeah, he wasn't surprised anymore.

"Well, I'm going home, too," Harper said loudly, turning back to the blue portal, "Besides, if the only basis for picking us people is because we have a magic birthstone or whatever, I literally just found this ring today, a few hours ago, in a hotel pool, and I'm pretty sure it belonged to someone else, so, uh...yeah. I'm definitely the wrong guy for this. I'm out."