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Super Robot Wars ∀: Deep Space IC Thread - Part 3: Crisis Point

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"Because you HAVE to? What nonsense is that?!" Seung-Min replied, anger dripping through her lips as she spoke. Despite Vera's immaculate evasive technique, there was simply too much ordnance in play for the melee fighter to escape damage. Rounds from the Artemis' railgun were impacting against the Luna's armour, and beams from both the magnum and funnels were searing across the surface of the machine. Despite it's impressive durability, the Luna was accumulating damage, and not at an insignificant rate. As Vera came in for a counter, the first was simple enough to evade. A hard roll to the left allowed the Artemis to avoid the killing stroke, and a parting kick to the Luna's back allowed Seung-Min to regain some distance and maintain pressure.

Despite the high running through her veins, it just felt wrong. Because she had to? That just...

"You're incredibly skilled, incredibly strong! You're one of a handful of people who could make a difference, turn a tide all your own? But all you'll say is that you have to obey them? That's not... that's not the Vera Maxwell I've known, that I've fought? Since when were you the sort to give in and fold?!"

Edited by Ether

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"The battlefield is not a place to explain something that you don't need to know--"

"CUT THE CRAP!" A funnel shot through the air and slammed itself into the Luna's head, shocking Vera out of her small speech. "The only thing you have to do is DIE! You'd better fucking hope my sister is alive, because if not... If you dared to do a goddamn thing to her, I'm going to FLAY, ALL OF YOU!" Vera, Astin, Avery, it didn't matter to Chris, if Christina had been hurt in the midst of this nonsense, if they thought for one second they could do something like that and get away with it...

"You're the clone, then. I'm sorry things had to go this way, but--"

"You'll be sorry when I'm peeling the skin off your brother, Vera. You think I don't remember Andy? You fucking think I forgot? If you killed, my sister, I'm going to bring that pain back onto you a thousand fold! I'll make you WATCH!"

The mention of her brother wasn't something Vera had been expecting, enough to cause her pause. "Then I have no choice but to kill you here." Despite her words, the conviction had slipped in her voice. She definitely understood how Chris felt... And would put anyone who threatened to drag her through it to the sword.

Chris effectively Daunts Vera!

Fetch Quest: Clone Edition

"Keep Valerie up here with you, doc. She knows way more than me when it comes to medicine... I'll go get Nina. Glad this is going well." Having only spoken to Kim once, Olivia didn't have huge stake in the girl's feelings, but no one already fighting a war needed to go through something like this. She checked her communicator for a map of the bottom floor... Alright, they'd given the clone a room. "Just one quick elevator trip down and up."

Edited by SnakeMomMelissa

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"What makes you think I don't need to know?! You've always handled yourself with pride and honour, Vera. You're better than this, I know you are! So why just this, nebulous 'but thou must'?!" Seung-Min rebutted, before Vera was suddenly cut off. With Chris intervening via an intense shouting match at Vera, Seung-Min paused for a moment. It was the same rage she had felt, before Vera had forced her out of it. The same rage that boiled in the pit of her stomach and fueled her actions, even if it was no longer dictating them. The least she could do was clear up what she knew. Quickly flipping channels, she hoped she could at least ease the blonde's pain.

"Chris, Brant. Avery... shot Christina twice. Once in the chest, and once in the leg. She was alive and on her way to the infirmary last I saw her... Doctor Amparo has performed miracles before, I... I believe in her. I have to, else I'll go insane... if she could keep Nikolai alive after the Umbra, a few bullets should be nothing." Kim noted, fear welling up in her chest for just a moment before being suppressed. She would be okay. She had to be.

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Last Call

"Christina... hang in there." Makoto had to trust the doctor and her vassals here --there was much happening at once, and they needed to deploy as soon as possible. "I'll come back, alright?" The stakes were definitely high now, with Apotheosis trying this kind of move. Would the Phalanx be enough? Hopefully... they were in the middle of the sea, so it did have a niche.

"Come on, we can't do much more, we should get going." Caroline urged the two of them.

---

The presence of aliens was definitely daunting, but it couldn't be helped. They were synonymous with Apotheosis, at this point. "To think they got first contact..." And the gall to turn against the world over that? Honestly, it was pretty scummy, for Roxanna's metrics, but somehow that wasn't the biggest concern for her. "Jess is working overtime here, Avalon units. You need to fend off Vera quickly." It was kind of asking for the impossible, but the moment Jess couldn't keep up, the Riese was a goner, and for better or worse, Vera wasn't bothering with the sitting metal duck as much as the aliens. "Riese crew, prepare to fend them off."

"Hannah," She was known to be bold enough in these missions, right? "I can't provide too much here other than data, but that's enough --get Vera--, I'll send a warning shot too." It worked once, before, right?

Roxanna casts Attune on Hannah. (-25SP)

---

"A Lieutenant, huh? I suppose it's about time I fought one face to face." Major Edson seemed rather calm, though it was clear there was a large gap between the Mantle and the Luna, in technology. "Can you give me a hand, Lynx? I won't be able to keep up alone, I'll count on your powers for that."

"Roger."

Lynx casts Strike!(-20SP)
Bonner Analyzes Vera, (-20SP), the Mantle transforms into its plane form, moves to (17,23) and goes for a daring shot with the hip (well, nose, now) cannons!

Quote

Bonner attacks!
Target: Luna (Vera)
Weapon: Hip Beam Cannons
Final Hit: 100!
Final Crit: 6
Roll: 6, 72
Hit!
No Crit.
Damage: 75

Vera counters!
Weapon: Wrist Beam
Final Hit: 89
Final Crit: 24
Roll: 38, 39
Hit!
No Crit.
Damage: 67

"Hit confirmed! Hmm, we're worse for wear than she is from such an attack... Truly an impressive mech."
Bonner gains +160 EXP, +2 Will!
Lynx gains +180 EXP!


---
"S-sorry I'm late, I'm should get to firing position, right? Right." Caroline seemed a bit fresh, still, but that was to be expected.

Makoto, on the other hand, despite his inexperience, felt like he'd fought hundreds of battles against these aliens. "I'm going underwater! Setting up weapons! They're going to feel these or my name's not Makoto!"

Caroline to (8,20).
Makoto to (10,17), dives underwater... and casts DRIVE (-50SP)!

Edited by Xinnidy

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Bennet was going? She could at least help get Christina into the SIEG tank, first ... "Tambre come and help me transfer her into the tank. Christina, patching up these wounds is going to be a little intense so I'm going to have to put you under for a while." Normally she wouldn't bother stating the obvious so seriously, but ... well ... no matter what Megumi did, if the Riese was taken out here, Christina wouldn't ever realize what had happened. Maybe that would make her one of the lucky ones, but Megumi didn't think so. It was terrifying to be put to sleep and not know whether or not you'd ever wake up again.


With her group closing in on the Luna along with the Artemis, Firmia was hopeful they could down that monster once and for all. There was always the chance it would simply teleport from the field again. If that happened this time, Firmia had no doubt the next time they encountered Vera, the cyborg would be waiting for them at Apotheosis' base. That was the last thing they needed. Anyone they could kill off here and now wouldn't be around to confront them in the final battle. Somehow, they had to pin the Luna down and destroy it.

To the Alkaev's surprise, Chris yelled at Vera in the middle of this whole mess. She also smacked the Luna with a funnel, but that was a footnote compared to what was actually said. The threats, the righteous fury, the promise of overwhelming retribution, it all hit very close to home. Chris' idea of justice was clearly 'an eye for an eye' with a bit of salt for flavor, but it still wasn't that far removed from Firmia. The Alkaev simply felt that the best way to protect her loved ones was to make the notion of harming them so unwise, so stupidly dangerous for the offender and everyone around them, that no one would even consider it, and might even set someone straight for mentioning it. That kind of thing involved building up a reputation like Dima's, unfortunately. While not a kindred spirit, Firmia definitely understood Chris' feelings in this one instance.

"Avalon," Brant radioed the bridge, "We're all engaging! Let'em have it!"

Time to converge and crush that fake samurai. Firmia thrust out her hand toward the Luna and grit her teeth! "FIRE!!!"


This was eerily familiar. Chris knew enough about Apotheosis' personnel to really rattle them when she wanted to. They wouldn't always be able to pull that off, but for now, the best way to take Vera down was to throw her off balance. Smashing funnels into the Luna's head wasn't a bad move, either ... "Heh, I'm going to ask Sasha about high explosives when we get back. One of these days, a funnel needs to blow up in someone's face when you hit them with it."

Just then, Kim came through and delivered some shocking news about Christina. She hadn't been killed, after all. If she'd made it to the infirmary, then Brant wasn't worried. Despite how depressed Doctor Amparo was, she wasn't going to let that affect her work in a crisis. That didn't make Brant any less angry with Avery, of course. He'd kill her on the spot if she were unlucky enough to run into him, but right now, the only way to overcome this ambush was to stay as level headed as possible, and hit their objectives hard and fast. "Thanks, Kim. We really needed to hear that. The doctor's got this, but she'll have an easier time if we keep the Riese intact, so let's do it."

"Avalon, we're all engaging! Let'em have it!"

Brant casts Strike, Snipe, transforms the Regalia, moves to 22,25 and attacks the Luna with the Hyper Beam Rifle! Avalon supports with Dual Beam Cannons!

Firmia casts Alert and has Marcia attack the Luna with the Avalon's Dual Beam Cannons!

Edited by Phoenix

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"She's--" Chris' words got caught up in the sob she stopped in her throat, hearing that Christina had actually been shot was a severe punch to the gut. But, that she was alive? That was music to her worried ears. Chris let out a sigh, and that sob, shaking her head some. No shouting at Megumi, she fired off a quick message to the doctor's communicator.

'You'd better save her.'

"Thank you Kim... Now let's crush these vermin."


"Because I must! You don't deserve to know until you can best me in combat! Only then will it matter!" More angles of attack, they'd really pissed off the crew this time. Vera couldn't block all the incoming fire, her i-Fields weathering most of the extreme damage, but her outer hull was taking a hefty pounding!

Brant rears up and fires!
(100,19)
(13,5)
Hit
Crit!
163 damage!
Vera is too far away to counter!
The Avalon comes in next!
(100,15)
(62,11)
Hit
Crit!
192!

"Ghhh... Ahhhh! They've improved their machines this much, in such a short time!? What's going on!?"

Brant gains +170 EXP, +2 Will!
Firmia gains +85 EXP, +1 Will!

Firmia isn't finished! Another thundering roar of her cannons!
(100,15)
(68,95)
120 damage this time!
Vera is out of counter range!
Firmia gains +170 EXP, +1 will!
Firmia levels up!
Shooting! Accuracy! Skill!

Hannah casts Alert, and charges Vera from 18,26!
"Vera! Face me!" Yes, it was a grudge. Yes, it was why she'd pushed both herself and Firmia to allow her to equip more melee weapons. And it was going to pay off!
(100,13)
(31,20)
Hit!
94 damage!
"You... You can't let things go, can you android!?"
Vera counters, and misses because of alert!
"D-Dammit..."
"I can't, and I won't! I lost to you once, and never again! You hurt my friends, you try to kill those I love! I might be all machine, but I'm more human than you'll ever be!"
Hannah gains +170 EXP!

Edited by SnakeMomMelissa

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"It looks like Mordred disrupted the Luna's I-Field! Firing... EXCALIBUR!" Marcia shouted as the Avalon's main guns sent a volley of searing beam directly into the Luna. It's field still weathered some of the blow, but they had been put under too much stress to absorb it entirely, and the blow had been hefty. With any luck...

"Secondary salvo locked and loaded! FIRE!" Came the second volley, with a vicious cacophony on whirring generators and blinding heat. Striking the Luna dead on a second time, Marcia pumped her fist. The opening had been just big enough for another deadeye shot!

"Preparing to intercept any retaliatory fire, Captain."  

______________________________________

"Yeah... we've just got to... take care of business, so we can all greet her, when she wakes up." Seung-Min replied, the relief coming from both of them well worth the time it took to pass along the news. Not knowing was... the scariest thing. Always. And unlike prior engagements, the Luna was... not holding up well to the myriad incoming attacks aimed at it. They had progressed since first meeting Vera, and her machine wasn't the unstoppable juggernaut it had been in the past. A part of Seung-Min felt bad for the waylaid swordswoman. She had charged in to protect this sister of hers, and her tried and true tactic had backfired on her in a real way for the first time. She could understand that rush, that drive to act... she had felt it herself not too long ago, was still feeling it. And so much as Chris' vitriol was justified for what had happened to Christina, it hadn't been Vera who had committed the deed. It was Avery who deserved this, most of all.

Why was she feeling this way? ARES had done nothing but amplify her combat instincts before, why was it now imparting this strange, reflective clarity? Why did she care what happened to Vera, when all she should have rightfully been feeling at the moment was indignant, righteous fury?

"That's a bit of a tall ask, Vera. It's hard to set up a proper duel in the middle of a war... I want... wanted, to hate you, scorn you for getting in my way. Part of me still does, but... You clearly have your own burdens, and you made this charge in an attempt to save your loved ones. I can relate." Seung-Min stated calmly, directly to the Luna.

"I wanted to see you as more than just an enemy. I had hoped that I could place the same respect I have for your skill as a pilot, to a discernible person behind it. You seem to know all there is to know about me already, thanks to that information network of yours. This deep into things, what harm can sharing a little bit back do? I have my own problems with the ANF, I can only imagine the horrors they must have inflicted on you, to bring you this far. I... I just want to understand, Vera."

Edited by Ether

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Kazue casts Accel and Sense, rushing to 16,26, before blasting out of the water!
(100,17)
(56,16)
Hit
Crit!
176 damage!
Vera counters, and once again misses from Alert!
Kazue gains +180 EXP, +4 will!

"Villain! You face the might of the ANF's finest hero of Justice!"

Vera was already reeling from the overall assault, but there was more!? A machine had suddenly jetted itself out of the water, sword drawn. "I won't lose, to another swordsman!" Katanas clashed, for a moment... But Vera was swiftly parried, and struck again!

"チェスト!"

"What!?" I, lost a clash! Like this! H-How... Who are you...!?

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She kept herself collected.  In control.  The other's words meant nothing to her as she continued to help her friends while smiling brightly.  Facing against these manges, she had to stay at her utmost best.  "Equal?  Yes, because killing off the majority of my people and making the remainder slaves is considered 'equal'," she says in a silvery tone, eyes now narrowed into slits as she started to push the other away.  "You...you could've left us alone... We could've...we-"

Vvi didn't get to finish, eyes widening as Soor'Kan warped and intercepted Aliza.  She couldn't help the soft hiss of anger leaving her, ears flattened to each side of her head as she debated on whether to leave Gaal'Bathy to help Aliza or keep the other feline at bay.  Decisions, decisions...

Seung Min's showdown with Vera provided a momentary distraction, Vvi focusing on that for a moment before calming down once more.  More and more allies went on to pummel the human, and she couldn't help the smirk as she directed her attention towards the cats once more.  "The only worthless ones here are you two.  Why, your little human cant even handle us right now.  The fact that you need the help of such an "inferior race" is rather pitiful you know?"

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Aliza was all set to keep gunning down the alien, that is until her crossbow suddenly got grabbed by a teleporting dark mech piloted by the other alien. That really spooked Aliza behind the console. "Ah!" Could they have just always done that? Of course they could. That made her immensely uncomfortable. Still, she couldn't panic. It would only make things worse. So she took a silent breath to herself, and spoke out to him. "...I feel the same, but it's a shame. I want to understand you, or at least the reason why you're doing this." Despite the awkward situation and slight fear she didn't make a move yet. The opportunity to talk and her curious mind overtook that for a moment. "Is this all really worth it to you?"

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Having someone inside the Aria with him was somewhat unsettling for Tarquin. Previously he had managed every system himself, his entire attention dedicated to running each aspect of the Aria. Hopefully Jess would gradually familiarise herself with the unit, both for her own accomplishment and for the battle itself. He looked over at his co-pilot, almost to confirm to himself that she was actually still there. The assault against the Luna had sparked passion and fury across his allies, the betrayal of Avery only fuelling their emotions. His own specialisation was almost fitting, he wasn't at the heart of the conflict and was merely an observer at the periphery.

"Solch ein heftiger Angriff für einen einzelnen Feind? Ein seltsames, aber kein fremdes Konzept." Tarquin pondered, swiftly remembering that Jess was with him.  Not only would he need to start explaining his thoughts, he would need to share his plans with her too."It is best we find a suitable firing point. The Aria is not equipped for marine warfare, we shall have to rely on its range to offer support."

Tarquin moves to 8,19 and holds!
 

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Frozen in fear, Alriana could only watch as the Praxis drew closer and closer, it's claw aimed directly at the Almydis. She tried to dodge, to do anything, but her body wouldn't obey. It was inevitable at this point; she was going to be taken back and there wasn't a thing she could do about it. As much as she had boasted about being the strongest, against the Sacarians she was powerless alone. And Soor'kan had made sure that she was just that, his comm line preventing her from reaching out to anyone without his knowledge. She closed her eyes and waited for the impact... But only the resounding clang of metal on metal came. What is... happening?

She opened her eyes, revealing the Fury Arachnid fending off the Praxis. Tristan called her shortly after, worried about her... She wasn't alone. She was still terrified of Soor'kan and what he could do, but she was not alone. But still, she hesitated. She knew that if she followed through and still lost there'd be hell to pay. She'd be killed, or worse... But, if she did go back she would lose everything important to her: Tristan, Cheryl, Aliza, Vvi... She'd likely never see them again. Or if she did, it would be as her new targets. Somehow, that thought was even more terrifying than what she knew Soor'kan would do to her. Above all else, she did not want that. Whether it was that newfound realization, or something else she couldn't explain, she finally found her voice. "Zhro uln: ...Praxis Alpha." On her command, the communication line between her and Soor'kan terminated. Like he had taught her, she would fight to the death.

Alriana let out a breath she didn't realize she'd been holding and quickly supported herself with her tail as she nearly lost the strength to stand. She was no longer frozen in place, but she was shaking again, still afraid despite herself. Soor'kan would not be pleased by her denial. Tristan... needed to know. "Tristan, I... I'm, afraid." There was more desperation than fear in her voice,  but both were clearly present. "Soor'kan! H-he wants me. B-back. I am, his... favorite. I-I, do not want to g-go. But, he will... take me. H-Help."

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Help

"Is this worth it? Needing her help...? ... Hah, haha, hahahaha~!" Soor'Kan was rather gleeful at the assumptions from these silly people, did they really think like this? "We need your planet, and you refuse to serve us. Of course it's worth it. What a question, hahaha!" Definitely amused by that... And the Luqari, so very disappointing.

"Vvi, I'd thought you smarter than that. We do not need her help... She is merely a distraction, a rather effective one; look at how many of you she's kept over there? One of our own could have sufficed, but, why waste my men when I can waste one of their kind? Honestly..."

And then Alriana cut the line to him. I didn't think her brave enough... Or foolish enough. "Gaal'Bathy," he addressed her mind, "Alriana has made her intentions clear. Rip her out of that machine if you must, she will see what disobeying me results in."

"Yes, sire... I've got to remove one filthy traitor, first."

"By all means, I trust you can handle things."


Alriana was... Was afraid? What? Of one of the Sacarians, it seemed... His favorite? Oh no. No no no, you don't get to go there, you sick freak! He assumed the worst, and from what Aly had said about orders and not wanting to talk about her time with them... The worst was likely true. "No one's taking you anywhere Alriana. Your home is wherever you want it to be, some self important slime doesn't get to tell you what to do." His machine was definitely technically impressive, they couldn't even get a complete read on the thing... And all sensors were saying, that the main cannons wouldn't even make a dent. That made no sense, but it wasn't worth risking a full shot just to test. The captain could handle things, until she was overwhelmed.

"Trust me, Alriana. You're going to make it through today. You're going to be here, when the dust settles. Here with all of us, I promise you that. And Soor'Kan?" what a dumb name, "isn't even going to think about coming back for you. You don't belong to anyone." He could only offer her words and encouragement right now, but with the Riese's main guns still operational, and Vera receiving what must've been the biggest pounding she'd ever experienced, Tristan was confident that not even this advanced group of aliens could stand a chance.

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"I... Okay. I, trust you, Tristan." She was still afraid, immensely so, but Tristan's encouragement, his support, gave her the strength to face that fear; at least for the moment. She believed in his promise absolutely; she wasn't going back to that horrible place today, or ever again. She would make sure of that herself. For that reason, she would fight, fight until she couldn't and then some more. But this was far from an ideal situation for her, Soor'kan's presence aside. She specialized in solo assaults and quick resolutions; open combat was not her forte. She knew what it took to work as a team at least, but this was on a whole different scale and the stakes were higher then they'd ever been before. She needed direction lest she make another mistake by acting alone. "Tristan. Ord- Direct me. Tell me, my target."

Edited by Ursali

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Looking at his watch as he slid into the cockpit, Thorvald nodded slightly with a tightly pressed smile. Eight minutes since the alert first went out about the incoming unknown. Closer than he'd have liked to that hard ten minute deadline, to be honest, but even so, there was little that could have been done to speed up the process. Still, it was obvious the situation in the field was a bit of a general disarray, several craft had already launched in ones or twos as they'd become available to do so, and the engage would be starting out without any sort of careful, centralized plan.

On the one hand, there was some uncanny parallel to that earlier mission where Tarquin took off without authorization and had to be chased after and retrieved. On the other hand, the lost boys hadn't actually turned traitor, so this was going to be fundamentally different, fundamentally harder to deal with. Even the launch protocols that had been established in the wake of that prior event hadn't been enough to prevent the current confusion and piecemeal from happening, as the captain or XO presumably had begun authorizing the craft individually as they'd become available. Nor should it have, probably, given the nature of the current threat and the clear and present benefits of having at least some response sortied and available over no birds in the air at all. That just meant there was only one way forward. Take a firm grasp, play a little catch up, and ride out the storm.

Assessing the situation, Lieutenant Kim and the Avalon crew were tangoing with Vera. One of their new hires had seemingly gotten caught up in that engage as well. Trying to pull anyone away from that was going to be a nonstarter, the enemy ace would almost certainly capitalize. Thorvald wasn't sure adding more fuel to the fire was really the best use of resources, however. A slightly worried thought in the back of his mind wondered how much of that was personal bias after their words on the beach, and the Esther affair. Were personal feelings clouding his judgement to a detrimental extent here, or was the deeper sentiment that despite everything in the past, Vera was not the foe to be most concerned with. Case in point, the inhuman invaders right in the Riese's face here.

Two unique models could be picked out, one having closely engaged with Aliza, and the other with the milder, more relateable ETs the crew had acquired along the way. Well... 'mild' was still probably not the right word to apply to either that cross between a lizard and a shark, or to the four horned four eyed foreigner. But compared to the aggressive assaults from the Sacarians, both mental and otherwise... well, the cats had also formed a ring around the Ceres. Had it not been for Firmia's transmission, Thorvald may have been more eager to assume a charitable interpretation--that the surrounded mech was in need of saving, perhaps--but it seemed the actual information came down otherwise. So that's what Avery had managed to nick to secure her escape? He worried over the fate of Astin--were they held hostage inside with her, or laid out somewhere unconscious on the Riese still--but for the time being such concerns had to be put from mind.

'Don't risk the Riese to do so' was a given, of course. How best to proceed then? Hmm, this should work.

"Elaine, Tarquin. Asking you guys to play mid to long range support on this one. Hold out on the Riese surface for now and cover us, while keeping the enemy from molesting our home as best as possible. Going to try for a spearhead maneuver, but if they don't engage and push past, we'll fall back as well. But we have a decent shot at the Ceres and disrupting their formation right now, so we've gotta take it. Abigail..." he paused a little, some slight discomfort involved in picking her for this task, all things considered, but the call made sense. "Take my immediate six. Aliza, Vvi, Alriana, if you can safely break away and join in, do so. If not, well, we'll manage the best we can." Makoto and Caroline were already on the move, so no need to inundate them with further orders.

Okay, let's do this. Pulling the levers and engaging the Odin's super robot systems, Thorvald transforms his machine and prepares to roll out.

Tranform to tank mode, move to 8,16 and Rocket Barrel Marianne

 


 

Jess's eyebrow raised in surprise, but Tarquin's offer was not unwelcome, just unexpected. Especially as he took care to phrase his words in a way that minimized any pressure. "If you don't think I'd be in the way, then... yes, I'd like very much to try to help out. Thank you."

Following the impromptu invitation, things had carried on well enough, getting suited up and settling into a mech was a little like riding a bicycle, once the body started going through the motions, it was almost like second nature. The interesting part would come as they moved forward. For now, Tarquin was manning all the controls like usual, as she simply studied and observed, but soon... soon she should be able to step in and take over some of the minor functions. It would just be a matter of communication, should be eas--

What was that? Was that... it was, wasn't it? "Uh... nicht sprekken Deustch?" Jess stammered slightly, trying to recall stock phrases from long ago... at least anything vaguely relevant. No point asking where the bathroom was here, after all. Thankfully, the lead pilot recognized his minor misstep almost immediately, but it was a worrisome factor, and cast another shade of unease on the whole situation. It was hard to maintain a positive attitude when things crop up without warning.

"R-Right, that makes sense," she agreed, as he outlined his thoughts again, this time in English. Though... from the looks of things, when compared to some craft she'd been in, this Aria wasn't as marine deficient as it was being made to seem. Should she... should she mention that now or...?

No... just keep observing, maybe she missed something. If their hand looks like it might be forced, she can raise the issue then.

Edited by Balcerzak

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Roll Out

Good. This was good. This is what Alriana needed to do to make it through this... And right as Tristan was going to give her a suggestion, Thorvald spoke up, his message resounding in her machine. "Follow his lead, Alriana. Thorvald knows what he's doing out there. You can trust him just like you can trust me... I know you can do this. You're incredibly strong." Hopefully the captain didn't mind him issuing orders to a pilot by himself, but a quick glance over at Jess just had her smiling as she glanced at him. Ah, geez... I'm gonna get mocked for this, aren't I? Perhaps a little levity when this was all over would be worth it.

Thorvald takes action!

(55,7)
(51,98)
Hit!
50 damage!

"Hmm? Something just hit us..." Some missiles had snaked themselves past the Sacarian machines, Marianne zooming into the source. "Oh! Hey, Thorvald~" She popped open a channel to him, chuckling to herself. "Miss your drinking buddy already? Can't just let me go, can ya~ Well, that's fine. But I'm a one lover kinda gal!"

Marianne counters!
Fist, away!
(100,13)
(9,10)
Hit
Crit!
12... Damage...

"Eugh... I should've dismantled that thing, not that Artemis."
Thorvald gains +40 EXP, +4 will!

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Tristan's continued encouragement bolstered her further; despite the situation, her fear, she smiled slightly. "Yes, I am... Thank you, Tristan." Now, there was a battle to fight. To win. Thorvald had already started on the Ceres, the mech with Avery likely at the controls. A high priority target. "Papa... Bear." Was that seriously Thorvald's callsign? "I will, follow up. Cover me, if you can." Gaal'Bathy likely wouldn't let her go so easily, but Vvi had held off the Sacarian before; surely she could do it again if she needed to. Mmgah'ehye bug, Almydis.

Alriana focus, move to 8,15 and Acid Shotgun Marianne.

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A spray of acid erupts from the ocean!

(76,42)
(62,72)
Hit!
41 damage!
The Ceres' armor is debuffed!

"Stupid alien... Astin, hun, can you try contacting Vera? She's taking her time over there."

Marianne launches the fist again!
(10,18)
(82,82)
"So fast, even underwater. I wanna take that machine apart~"

Alriana gains +30 EXP, 4 will!

"Ride's not over yet, traitor."
Jess sent a measured response to the Ceres, missiles flying out and dancing around the Sacarians, right into the Ceres!
(100!,10)
(11,3)
Hit
Crit!
144!
"Christ, she packs a punch...!"

Marianne cannot counter!
Jess gains +40 EXP, +1 will!
 

Edited by SnakeMomMelissa

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The response from Sor'Kaan left Aliza in shock. This wasn't an alien to be reasoned with like Vvi or Alriana, this was more akin to a dictator. Someone who couldn't be stopped with words alone. Given that his army was still after her friend and there was nothing more to say. Well except... "...I gotcha." She paused for a sigh. "Well if nothing else I learned one thing from this exchange...your plans stink as much as you do." In that moment the Sagittae shifted from flight mode to its mobile suit form, and at the tail end of the shift Aliza used the legs to kick herself off of the Praxis. Aliza made sure to give the alien a brief wave with the Sagittae's hand before she made her big splash into the water below. "..." The Italian put on her serious face. "Aliza here. I'm going after the Ceres." After that quick update on the comms she made her way under water to spot the Ceres. She quickly found her target and aimed her beam crossbow from under. With a quick trigger pull a beam was launched through the surface, right toward Marianne's machine.

Aliza casts focus, shifts back into mobile suit form, dives underwater, and then moves to 7,14 to fire her Beam Crossbow at Marianne

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"Gonna keep some of the goons away from the action. Leave it to me, Thorvald, I'm gonna show them somethin' fierce. Give that robot stealing hick another one for me!" Elaine replied, setting her sights on one of Praxis ahead of the Heion Riese. With everybody else caught up with the imminent threats of the enemy commanders, someone needed to clean up the grunts. It wasn't glamorous or exciting, but Elaine needed to play her part so they could all succeed. 

"I got the final blow on Louise... can't be tryin' to take the spotlight just to make myself feel better." she muttered, easing the Oberon to the edge of the water. Fighting at sea wasn't really her cup of tea, she'd need the Oberon's engines to warm up properly before she could take to the air.

Elaine moves to 8,18 and attacks Sacarian #8 with her Dual Rifle!

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"Clever," Soor'Kan scoffed, "but incorrect. In fact I smell fabulous, even to your human standards."

Aliza scoots off to fire at Marianne!
(77,8)
(67,74)
Hit!
88 damage!
"Gettin' real tired of my suit getting dinged up like this!"
Marianne counters!
(53,17)
(19,65)
Hit!
27 damage!
Aliza gains +40 EXP, +1 will!

Elaine decides a cat is fine too!

(59,9)
(7,33)
Hit!
100 damage
"Die, human!"
The cat counters!
(52,6)
(35,83)
Hit!
74 damage!
Elaine gains +40 EXP, +4 will!

Edited by SnakeMomMelissa

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Vvi let out a small "tch", her annoyance at the other's words very much noticeable as she assessed her options.  She could continue to "converse" with the cats, keeping them distracted with their own monologues.  Then again that would only do so much before they targeted the Riese.  As she continued to think, a transmission was heard coming from Thorvald.  He was the squad leader right?  Either way he basically told them to break formation and go help with the Ceres which...was worrisome.  On the one hand it was obvious that they needed to take it down, but on the other it only cemented Soor'Kan's words.  Were the Ceres and Luna only distractions for the feline's true goal?  

She wanted to grit her teeth, but instead her facial expression smoothed over to a more composed form before taking in a breath and then letting it out.  "Reasoning with these manges is useless hun, your words are better saved for something else," she finally spoke towards Aliza, before following her towards the Ceres.  She'll deal with them some other time then.  "Heard you loud and clear sir!  Although, I will refrain from using your call name; something about it makes me shudder, and not in a positive manner," she couldn't help but add as a smile crept on her face once more.

"Watch out for these two sir.  They could be going for the Riese while all of us are occupied. Calling the Luna a distraction, it's possible they're aiming to destroy our ship," she piped up. 

Back to the mission at hand, she watched as Aliza fired a beam at the Ceres before she joined the fray.  Delivering a well deserved TURBO PUNCH to the machine and the pilot within, Vvi couldn't help the grin that spread along her lips and revealed her fangs.  "Hm, not as satisfying as making you suffer emotionally, but it should do the trick!" 

Vvi focus, move to 9,14 and TURBO SMASHER PUNCH Marianne

Edited by sweet podado

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Jess was understandly still rather uneasy, the Aria wasn't exactly a standard unit by any means - it had been specifically designed for a genetically engineered line of pilots. However, Tarquin had a feeling that the unit itself wasn't the problem, he had given her a brief overview of the Aria and its subsystems but where she could actively engage wasn't as clear. It was difficult for him too, how one would be able to allow someone else into their logical processing felt almost beyond the young boy. He had been doing so much for himself for so long... did he know any different?

"Most pilots are only poorly capable of maintaining a conception of an entire battlefield... or a room, for that matter!"

Bruno had returned from the past to guide him forwards again. There was an element of regret to his realisation, it was somewhat tragic how he could only learn from his lessons long after he'd left. An extra pair of eyes and hands... and a brain would take pressure off him. There was only so long he could remain hyper-vigilant, Jess could allow him to maintain a more consistent performance.

"Jess, I am transferring generator regulation and thruster calibration to your terminal." Tarquin replied, inputting the commands into a nearby display. If they were going to work as a team, he would need to show that he trusted her. "The Aria is not designed for mobile combat, but I feel we can go beyond its specifications with some coordination."

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Oh you've got to be fucking kidding me. Thorvald wanted her to go for a swim? Has he seen a Heracles get wet before? Still, what really were the options? There was nothing but water all around, and unless she wanted to sit back and twiddle her thumbs...

"Shit," Abigail swore and banged a hand on the dash. Then again, getting in the water was better than flying through the sky in some tin coffin, even if she wasn't much good at it. Gotta try to stay positive though. Jess was doing everything she could for the Riese, despite the sabotage, so if she was giving it any less than her all too, Abby could never forgive herself.

That said, even if she pushed herself like this, getting shots in at the traitor still seemed just out of reach. She'd have to settle for working on one of the uppity house pets. Elaine had already started in on one, nothing better than to follow her lead.

"Nice shot, Jailbird," she gave credit where it was due. "Here's putting on some more pressure."

Abigail cast Focus, move to 8,17, Pulse Kunai vs Cat 8

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