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  #126    
Old July 28th, 2013 (02:13 AM).
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Delta Mayor -
- AUP HQ
Unsure of what exactly was going on here Delta just shrugged her shoulders at Imogen's first comment. It wasn't as if they had conversed in the past, well, not anything that was worth remembering. No, Imogen was one of the higher ups she had avoided after hearing how much the other higher ups disliked her. She sighed, what had she done to deserve this "cheerful" interaction? If Imogen wanted to keep her attention she would have to stop this yammering. Blah, I think I'm better than you, blah, here's how you do it, and more blah. None of it caught Delta's interest, but she did have a point, which Delta was reluctant to admit. Though this point that she was eager to carry out held a lot of attitude something Delta could match.

The knife dropped from Delta's hand in a showy slow motion fashion and moved a few inches towards Imogen. "My weapon? Oh, Imogen if you think this is my weapon just wait until you see my fists." Delta replied with a cocky tone and a toothy grin.

At the next statement Imogen made Delta became wide-eyed with shock and froze in place. She knew. She knew, which meant that they all knew, everyone knew. Emil. Misha. Atticus. How had that happened? The question was on the tip of Delta's tongue it just wouldn't speak the words. It felt heavier and it was now numb. She wanted answers... or Imogen was just testing her. And she had just failed.

Nevermind that, but Imogen was actually agreeing with her decision, and Delta found herself rethinking her thought to write Imogen off. In fact, Imogen was quickly becoming her favorite higher up if this wasn't some sort of trickery. Some of the guilt Delta had buried deep inside had eased and now it would be a little bit easier to hold her stance on what had occurred in Paris. Here she was getting recognized for being more than the others, not like annoying Agnes or bird for brains Will. It was about time someone realized that she was above any other recently recruited members. Whatever Imogen was getting at she sure was taking a long time to get to it and Delta wanted to know.

Soon Delta recovered and asked with mild curiosity, "What if I don't, what does it matter to you?"
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  #127    
Old July 28th, 2013 (12:53 PM).
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Agnes Johansson - Atlantean Unification Project HQ, Toulouse, France


9th November, 2012
The night after the Paris disaster, Agnes had trouble falling asleep. She kept seeing the golden glowing man disappearing over and over again, and at one point in her dreams, the girl who had walked up to him stood right in front of her. Looking at her. Looking into her. She woke up, sweating.

The ground floor was big and quiet at night. Agnes suspected that only Annie was really awake after this tiring day. At least she hoped that no one else struggled like she did with dreams. She couldn't shake that strange man out from her mind. For many minutes, she just silently walked back and forth in the large hall next to the cafeteria, a glass of water in hand, not knowing or thinking of if anyone was watching her.

After that, the good kind of sleep that follows physical exhaustion finally came. Agnes hadn't been fighting in Paris, but somehow flying took its toll in both a physical and mental way. She slept in on the morning, and when she woke up she first started, believing she was late for meeting up for training... But then remembered that it was a free day today.

So instead of hurrying downstairs to do something fruitful, she got comfortably dressed - without even taking a shower first - and walked up the stairs to the roof. She met no one on the way anyways.

The roof was Agnes favorite place in the HQ. It was large and empty. And the sky was above her. It was a much better place to practice her flying in, than the limited space indoors. Of course she had to be careful and not fly too high; else people on the streets would see. But normally people didn't look up at roofs very often, so this far she had been fine.

She just stood there, leaning towards the wall lining the rooftop for a while, and tried to sort out her thoughts and dreams from last night. But only vaguely. She didn't feel like diving too deep into why they had affected her so. If anything, she had thought seeing Delta decapitate a man would make a bigger imprint in her mind. But it hadn't. Even though she sure hadn't forgotten that - nor how Delta had lied to her later, when confronted. She pouted at the sheer thought of it, and how she just couldn't understand the other dark skinned girl.

Oakley was another deal. She seemed nice. Likely a bit confused at the moment, being new here and all. Aww. Agnes took a deep breath and closed her eyes in the morning sunlight for a little while. Wishing that everyone could just cool off a bit. For once, she didn't feel like setting off and taking action. She wanted some calm. Gosh, those events yesterday must really have done something to her.

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Old July 28th, 2013 (07:42 PM).
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Imogen Green - Atlantean Unification Project HQ, Toulouse, France

"Well," Imogen mimicked Delta, moving a few steps closer, her smile growing seemingly more 'evil', "it means you're not as shallow as those mindless twits. It's such a shame that I wasn't tasked with recruiting you, instead of bird brain. I think I can do so much more for you than Misha can. So much more. Of course, I still can for you."

Imogen bent over and skimmed over one of the articles that Delta had swept onto the floor. She had already been on the Internet and read everything there was to know (she wasn't going to find out anymore by helping her co-workers anyway) but it was good to see Delta was trying to keep ahead too. Too bad her scope was so limited right now. Didn't the girl know there was an entire floor devoted to computers and the Internet? At least she had started. She'd already passed Will this morning. He was still asleep. What a joke.

"See, Del, sweetie, there might be something we can help each other with..."

"Imogen!" Atticus came rushing down the hall, skittering at Delta's door. Ugh, what horrible timing. What was he doing here? "What are you doing?!"

"Having a chat with Del here. What's it to you?" Imogen sneered back at him.

"Y-you should be in IIC! Do you know how much we have been working?! Mr. Bernot is looking for you!" It was obvious by the shadows under his eyes that he had been up probably all night with Annie (ugh, their relationship was so sickly sweet) but Imogen didn't care. Not even a little bit.

"Fine," Imogen raised her hands and swept him out of the room. "I'll go. I'll talk to you later honey. Come find me later, kay?" With a wink to Delta and a scowl at Atticus, she left. Atticus exchanged a few looks between her and Delta before narrowing an eye.

"Hey, uh, whatever she told you, don't... Don't listen to her, okay? She's evil," Atticus stood at the door for a moment before following Imogen and disappearing behind the door frame.

Oakley North - Atlantean Unification Project HQ, Toulouse, France

Oakley sat in the cafeteria, playing with the food on her plate. It was hardly as nice as the food the Librarian had given then, but not much different than the food she had at her fancy French school. It was rather odd that she was back in France, she didn't think she'd be coming back for a rather long time since the "Atlantean Crisis". What would it be like to return to a normal life? Would she still be in London with her father, cowering after the attacks? Or perhaps back to school? It was like the attacks were following her. First in London, where she used to live. Then France, where her school was. And now...

Oakley glanced at the New York Times newspaper in front of her. Riots, in Madrid. The thought of that place, especially of riots in that place, brought back awful memories. She had not seen her mother in a long time, and missed her dearly. Like her brother. It seemed Madrid had really started a series of unfortunate events for her. She hoped that nobody else had a mother visiting there right now. For another person to feel the same as she did, then and now, she wouldn't wish it upon her worst enemy.

Thoughts returned to her brother. Where... Where was he? Where was Wyatt?

"Où êtes-vous, mon frère? Mère? Tu me manques..."

"Hey," a voice in front of her almost made her jump. A boy sat in front of her, with dark hair and dark eyes. He looked naturally sad. Like something was really bothering him. Or maybe it was Oakley's depression that was contagious. She forced a smile back at the boy, hoping that might cheer him up.

"Hello," it didn't.

"Are you okay?" Wow, he didn't sugar coat anything. Oakley blinked at him, a little taken aback.

"Yeah, I'm okay," she forced another smile. "Why do you ask?"

"Well you said you missed your mum and brother," when Oakley stared at him a little wide-eyed, he added, "My dad's half-French so he always spoke it when I was a kid."

"Oh. Yeah, I'm okay. I just miss them a lot."

"Me too. I mean my mum. She died when I was little. I don't have a brother. What's your name?" The boy, yeah, he was really straight forward. Was he intentionally trying to be kind of anti-social or... Was this just how he acted?

"Oakley. What's yours?"

"Evo," he said rather hastily with a hint of a scowl on his face, "my name is Evo."

"That's a cool name."

"Thanks."

Frederick Salusbury - Atlantean Unification Project HQ, Toulouse, France

Despite his age, being a few years older than his some of his, well, co-workers he guessed he could call them, Frederick was not yet considered a "Senior" member. Therefore, he had not been tasked like the others with trying to help to sort out the 'Paris Incident', and like the other new recruits, had been given a "free day". He wasn't sure what to do with his time. At home, he would feed his cat, make dinner, mark papers and read a book. It all seemed so insignificant now. Would he ever go back to being a college professor again? He was an overgrown goat for crying out loud. He would be laughed at by his peers for how he looked, no matter what kind of discoveries he made or books he wrote.

"What should I do?" he asked Julian Morales, his room neighbour. Julian was around the same age as Freddie, but had been with the AUP for maybe a year now, a little more. Julian's ability was something peculiar: he, similarly to the young William, had wings, though these ones were webbed, more like a bat. He was more like Freddie in the sense that he was more like the animal though, with thick framed glasses hiding his weak (but not entirely blind) eyes, using other sensors like his sense of hearing and smell in more sensitive situations. Frederick wasn't sure how he'd help everyone, but Julian seemed positive he was capable of some kind of assistance.

"Just... relax, Freddie. You spend a lot of time worrying. I can see those wrinkles and grey hairs already!"

"Wh-what?! Where!?"

"Relax. I was joking. Go read a book or play a video game or something."

But what was there to read that would help him relax? He couldn't read for the fun of it anymore, it just seemed pointless to dream of magical worlds with fire breathing dragons when it already seemed like it was happening! Never the less, he found some form of fiction in the library but instead of choosing a comfy chair in the library, he took the elevator all the way up to the top. The area was already vacated, however, with a familiar soul.

"Agnes!" He seems to gasp as soon as he noticed her, interrupting her peace that he was finding himself. "Sorry, sorry, I didn't realise you we're up here. Many a-apologies. Would you like me to leave?"
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  #129    
Old July 28th, 2013 (10:25 PM).
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Agnes Johansson - Atlantean Unification Project HQ, Toulouse, France


9th November, 2012
Agnes jumped up when Freddie's voice came. She ended up hovering a few decimeters above the floor. Typical; sometimes it was as if her power was to get rid of gravity.

Floating down again, she threw a calm smile at Mr Goat and walked closer to him along the fence. He was definitely one of the more pleasant people that could have interrupted her little morning thinking time. "Why would I want you to leave, silly? I'm not Del, I actually enjoy having other people around." She winked at him and laughed a little.

Then she turned back to face the city below for a moment. "I was just thinking about, um, stuff. Kind of a lot going through my head now, you know what I mean? With the terrorists, Oakley and the unconscious guy..." A wrinkle appeared in her otherwise smooth forehead. "Freddie? Do you know who that man sending down meteors was yesterday? I saw him. At the top of the Eiffel Tower, I flew up there. He was glowing like a star. Why would..." - she flung her arms out, helplessly - "Why would anyone do what he did? Just because he could?"

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Old July 29th, 2013 (03:19 PM).
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Dominique Bisset and Delta Mayor-- Toulouse, France, AUP HQ



Yesterday didn't happen. It couldn't have happened. But, God. How could it have not?

Dominique read the newspaper article over and over. He wasn't sure what he was doing. He would deny yesterday, then read the article, accept it, and then deny it again. Over and over again. How could this happen? It couldn't be true.

But it was. D*mmit!

Dominique looked around the cafeteria, though his eyeing may not have been seen as pleasant by everyone. It looked more like glaring than anything else. He looked back down at the newspaper then back out. He hoped he looked mean, he didn't want to be there. It wasn't very pleasant to wake up somewhere completely different from where you supposedly fell asleep. He had already started to hate this place. There was too much optimism where there none of it was needed. Just walking through this cafeteria was like a game to see how far he could go before someone (somehow) recognized him and asked if he'd really been in Paris, as if he'd knocked himself out after sneaking in. And what was so great about being in Paris? He wished he hadn't been there. He wished no one had. If the city weren't so popular maybe they wouldn't have... His parents wouldn't have...

Dom forced himself to think about something else, like how much he hated the cereal he was eating. It was his own fault, he felt too angry and too unsocial to order a full breakfast from the cooks. That's why he chose to sit by himself this morning. Some did make attempts to sit next to him, all of which he scared off one way or another. There must have been something wrong with them for them not to see that he wasn't interested in making friends or telling his story or discussing how lucky he was. He wasn't d*mn lucky. The game had changed. Now he had to see how long it would take for the next person to try and sit next to him.

The day was still early and Delta was still hungry, although reading what she had read put her on edge. As well as how Imogen had approached her and how Atticus urgently advised against. She couldn't stop muttering the word, "Krystal" like it was poison while she walked down the hallway towards the elevator. Firmly Delta pressed the ground level button and ascended three floors before she stepped off the machine. Unfortunately there was a bit more chatter than there had been when she first arrived in the cafeteria. It didn't take long before Delta dismissed their presence without a second thought about interacting with any of them, as association with them would put her on their level, pathetic. Annoyed, and that was putting it mildly, was how she typically felt walking around the headquarters.

That was, of course, before she saw him, Tanner, well, that wasn't his real name but Delta would just stick with that for now. The watch was how Delta was sure other than that she noticed that he was wearing some tacky garments that the higher ups must have laid out from him. Swallowing hard she strolled over to his table and sat down without an invitation, forgetting to get a plate of food in her nervousness. She had consciously made the decision to bring him here and the least she could do was keep him company that he would remember.

"Pyromaniac," Delta announced, she kept her face neutral as she took the newspaper from the newcomer, read over it once more and did not meet his eyes the entire time. "Take pleasure in almost burning families alive?"

Dominique automatically looked down at his watch when yet another person decided to come near the table. Twelve minutes. Here we go. Whoever this was was a bit bolder than the others, or maybe just rude, since she said nothing to him as she took his newspaper and read it over silently. It took another interesting turn when she suddenly asked him if... There was no reason to repeat it, hearing it was already outrageous enough. He could feel the heat rise in his chest and he wondered if he'd shoot fire if he opened his mouth. It could be by "accident" though it wasn't as if he was making an effort to hide his emotions.

"Why tell when I can show?" Dom raised a brow. "Where's yours?"

Delta stared intensely at him like he was going to burst into flames, her neutrality gave way to a smirk, "You mean, if you could control your power, which you clearly don't know how to do."

"It doesn't take much effort to make things burn." Dominique shrugged. "It wasn't too hard the last time." He looked down at his warming cereal and pushed it away, deciding he didn't want to eat with such bad company. "So are you here to impress me or talk? If it's the second I'd love it if you left immediately."

"Burn out is what you meant, which is exactly like you did in that fight." Delta sneered, crossing her arms beneath her chest. His attitude was much more abrasive than any of the others she had encountered and weirdly enough Delta enjoyed it. "You're not going to get better company than me and that's a fact." She toyed with the lanyard around her neck that held two keys before she continued on, "And you want company, take mine as a gift."

Dominique frowned. In truth he didn't remember the fight all that well. He remembered the meteors, the fire, the electricity, a handsome face, and clothes he hoped he destroyed before blacking out. Still, what did she know about him burning out? Was she there? Dom stopped himself from asking.

"Oh, really?" He pointed to the chairs next to him with a thumb. "I thought these empty chairs were doing a pretty good job."

This was all going downhill. Delta wasn't sure the last time she had been pleased to socialized with someone and actually wanted to interact with them. She hadn't a clue if he had any knowledge that she was the one who brought him here, Delta hadn't revealed her name so why would he? Responsibility wasn't something she felt often but in this situation she did.

"Look, I don't know you, but you can talk either to me or the cheer squad." Delta turned her head slightly to carry her voice so if Agnes or Oakley were around they would easily hear themselves being referenced. "Or you could be alone in a big headquarters twiddling your thumbs mulling over some dumb vendetta or tragic backstory. A lone Atlantean who can barely control his power. An amateur. You." At the last word Delta pointed her index finger at him.

"One more thing," Delta pushed her chair back and leaned over the table. The angrier she got the more present her Polish accent was. "If you think for a moment I'm someone you can just walk all over I have zero problems doing more damage to you than that other Atlantean did. Except I won't stop."

To emphasize her point Delta's right arm and hand were crystallized, a triggered response to her heighten emotions, like her mind had communicated to her body what she was about to do. Due to her outfit only her fingertips were seen. Then Delta delivered a crushing blow to the table that not only dented it and upset anything on it, but also made its surface start to crack. She kept her green eyes solely on the male Atlantean that sat before her not once did they waver.

Dominique kept his frown and his eyes locked. His heart beat a little faster, but he wouldn't let that turn his eyes away. He would be lying if he said he wasn't phased by someone who could punch dents into tables and spill his cereal, crystals or not. Still, he wasn't the type to back down from threats. He didn't know who this woman was but she was the boldest person he'd come across today. She may have had a point about the "cheer squad". It wasn't that he didn't like optimism, but there was such thing as too much optimism, which, by the looks of the people he'd met so far, was a trend here at the headquarters. He could walk off now and meet them. He wasn't obligated to stick around, but if she was right and he couldn't take it, then what? He couldn't leave, he'd already tried and was already stopped. He would either end up doing exactly what she'd said or come back and admit his faults and that looked bad. Both of them did. Dom didn't like looking bad, it was another reason why he kept his eyes on her.

Dom stood up slowly, his eyes not once leaving their mark. He wasn't sure if she liked this particular Atlantean, or hated her, but as much as he wanted the anger to come--especially after that first comment--he couldn't generate enough heat. At least, not enough to showcase how pissed off he wanted to be.

"If we're going to talk," he started, "then let's do it somewhere else." He looked away from her to survey the cafeteria. "I'm getting tired of this place."

"Lets," Delta nodded, the last thing she wanted was to stay here long enough for others to join them. "Third floor, common room is usually empty, if not they'll leave when I enter."

Things had taken a turn and were now looking up. Delta was unsure of how well they were going to get on and she was fine with that. Fine with having an acquaintance (or not), fine with keeping everyone at an arm's length away, and for once fine with being in the AUP HQ. However, it was still weird, and it still made her wary about this entire thing, whatever one would call it. If she avoided her name, could she avoid telling him that she brought him here? She wasn't going to leave him for the Royal Family scum they were outright vultures. Delta stayed silent as they walked to the elevator, which she justified by thinking that if they talked now what would they talk about once they got there? It was enough for her to remain silent, but for once she didn't look guarded nor did she scowl, no, she appeared almost content. The ride was quick and with Delta leading the way the walk to the common room was as well.

A fairly large room greeted them, it had several entertainment objects and sitting areas, as if they had that many people to occupy them. Some furniture matched a color scheme along with the painted walls. Other parts of the room looked like someone had thrown darts in a catalogue and picked the most horrendous patterns and clashing colors possible. Delta sat in one of the smaller areas that had a small table next to the couches and two plants by it also well. She did not take the large couch, she figured he needed more room than she did and sat in the smaller one.

"Where do they have you? In one of the rooms or the hospital?" Delta asked, the rooms were located on the third and fourth floors while the hospital was on the second. Of course Delta had already known where seeing as she had visited while he was passed out or at least she hoped he had been.

As Dom sat down he noted that the walk was more pleasant than this room's decorum. He wished they had kept walking rather than come in here. True, the journey had been quiet and his mind was more occupied with the spilled cereal that they left on the table--it bugged him that he didn't clean it up--but honestly. This place was atrocious. He imaged the same person who attempted to pick clothes out for him was the same person who decorated this rooom. He wondered why that person wasn't replaced.

"I have a room." Somewhere, he added in his mind. Honestly he couldn't remember where it was and he wasn't sure he cared. He woke up in the hospital more than a little shocked and after some reminders of the hell that came down on Paris and a failed attempt to leave he was escorted to his new room. It took one look out the window to figure out he was in Toulouse and his second attempt to leave was stopped on the explanation that "it might not be a good idea right now".

It was all very frustrating, just thinking about it made the heat come off of his body, but he did his best not to worry about it right now. As he took his mind off of the morning, he started to notice that he'd been talking to the same person and hadn't thought about who she might have been until now.

"Do you mind if I ask you your name?"

Delta shook her head, she didn't mind him asking but she didn't give him an answer, which is what he truly wanted. The whole name predicament was awfully confusing. It could not only opened up a can of worms about his placement here, but could deal damage in the future. If they were to treat this like they were superheroes giving a name away meant giving away something personal, an identity that connected to family. Something anyone smart wanted hidden. One day the friend that knows her name becomes her enemy, and enemies always targeted families. This might of worried Delta more if she had a family... she shifted uncomfortably in her seat while she dismissed those certain thoughts.

Clearly, the Unification Project had her name, they knew more about her life than she had let them know and it was unnerving. The Royal Family could find out probably just as easily... So, what did she have to lose here?

"Del..." She spoke up, looking off into the distance. This is where she wanted to return the question, but Delta felt that would show she cared and she didn't, couldn't.

"I have an extra bed," it had slipped out, which caused Delta frowned. At some point she developed a bad habit at saying what she thought out loud. It was true, the AUP had given her a two-bed room, though that was before she made it obvious she would gut the next person that stepped foot in her room. Delta recovered and immediately followed up with, "Do you have anyone... looking for you?" A topic she had been eager to speak about, the only one she felt guilty about and tried her best to not let it show that she was even remotely interested.

"Dominique," he looked away and then corrected, "Dom." He wondered if Del was a nickname or an actual name. It had to be a nickname, Del seemed... incomplete. He mentally went through a list of names that started with "Del" but couldn't think up anything that sounded like it fit her. Her accent... Polish, right? Was her name Polish? It took him about five seconds to realize he wouldn't be able to think up any Polish names and decided to drop the effort altogether.

Dom raised a brow when Del told him about her extra bed, wondering exactly why she had one. Before he had a good chance to think about it, though, she came up with a follow up question. He wanted to answer with yes, he knew that was the answer, but something in his gut held him up. His eyes went to the floor and his mind back to the flames and the screams of Paris. He wished he could deny what happened yesterday, but the weight of reality held him down. It was hard to deny the thousands of lives lost. Children and adults either dead or traumatized. He wondered if the dream he had last night was a memory or a side effect.

He nodded. "Yeah..." Dominique lifted his eyes. "One of them," he started on a more cheerful note, "is here." At least, he hoped so. "Not in the building, the city I mean." He looked out the nearby window and wondered if Lucien acted as calmly as Toulouse looked despite the recent chaos. "I would have gotten out of here, but..." Domonique shrugged, even through in truth he was not so passive.

He wasn't Italian, Delta had already figured that much out given the accent but the name further indicated he was indeed French or his parents really liked French names. Everything she had dreamed up was simply that, not that she expected any other outcome. Delta wasn't the best guesser. Dom, Dom was a nice name. Delta preferred nicknames, if someone didn't have one she would give them one but hers wouldn't be as pleasant. She watched him as he answered her question and noticed there was a look in his eyes before he positioned them elsewhere. A look of uncertainty that gave way to a thought Delta had that perhaps he wasn't as well informed as she thought he had been. The higher ups had been busy, or they said they were busy. Imogen apparently had enough time to bug her. Then something tugged at Delta, she had to do something for him. It wasn't right that he was stuck in here when someone was out there, out there possibly looking for him. She was sure the others had gotten to say words to their loved ones before being recruited. Misha never offered her the chance but it wasn't as if she would've taken it.

Quietly Delta suggested, "We could... leave." The thought of this whole area being under surveillance prompted Delta to lean in closer. In case they were being visually monitored Delta pretended to fiddle with her shoe straps, and brushed dirt off the heels. She then made her voice barely a whisper, which hopefully led to less chance of being picked up by any equipment. "Find her, find your friend. If you want to." Delta looked up for a second and wasn't quite sure if he'd go for it.

There were plenty of ways to leave HQ if they couldn't use the front door such as a busted window on the ground floor. With their powers combined there wasn't anyone would could stop them, except possibly Misha and Emil, but the higher ups were all squared away. It was the beginning of a plan, it was reckless and completely Delta's style. Free days were snooze days and Delta had enough of a solo training session to leave her satisfied. As long as they didn't use their powers publicly it wasn't as if they were at risk of being detected by the French government.

Dom took a quick look around the room when Del's voice dropped to a whisper, and he leaned forward with her. He wondered what they were whispering for, but he did remember being stopped when he already tried to leave. Maybe she tried the same? Or no one was allowed to leave? He thought maybe he had to sneak out at some point and though it seemed like they would have to be stealthier than he originally had thought, the time seemed to be now.

"I do," he whispered with a grin. "So how do we do it?"

"The higher ups are busy, which means we walk out the front door. They'll have to assign us some dingbat mentor, we'll give them the slip." Delta had just thought of this on the spot, but it seemed reasonable. The Atlantean Unification Project couldn't keep them prisoners, especially if they wanted to keep them as members. They also wouldn't let them go unattended because of incidents in Paris. Delta had learned enough in training, like, how to throw someone off your trail, she disregarded the fact that they also would've received that training and at a higher level. Delta then smiled rather mischievously, "If that doesn't work, we bust out. Just... follow my lead, yeah?"

The journey taken to the front doors was just the same as the one from the cafeteria to the common room, quick and quiet. Delta didn't want anyone stopping them that "just wanted to chat" nor did she really want to run into Imogen, she still needed to decide what to do about that situation. She didn't risk saying anything in case anyone was listening, somehow the AUP had found out that Delta killed that drummer and she bet it had something to do with technology. All she gave was a quick nod to Dom when they reached the front door, there were junior AUP members located at the entrance.

Delta cleared her throat to get their attention, as if their attention wasn't already focused on her. "We're leaving, if you try to stop me I'll bash your skulls in, okay? Tell our babysitter that we'll be outside waiting." Intimidation was always best in situations like these and so that's what Delta delivered. It seemed to work as they were quickly let through the doors after some hesitation and chatter into a communication device.

"Your turn, Dom."
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Old July 29th, 2013 (07:09 PM). Edited July 29th, 2013 by SV.
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James Hazen- Atlantean Royal Family Mansion – Boston, Lincolnshire, England



James stayed attentive long enough to confirm that Nate too would be joining him in the Atlantean Royal Family. After that, it was as if a switch was turned off. All of his pain and exhaustion seemed to hit him all at once, and before he knew it, he was knocked out cold on the helicopter. After that, he wasn't sure exactly what happened, or where he went. Sleep took hold of him, and didn't let go until the following day. The next thing he knew, he awoke in a bed he didn't recognize in a room that wasn't familiar to him. The only thing he did know was that he had one of the most comfortable sleeps in his life. James peered around the room, which had the look of a dorm room in college, similar to the one he attended in Hawaii. There was another bed on the other side of the room, but the sheets were folded nicely and the area around the bed seemed to be clean enough for James to not be sure if this was a room he was sharing, or if someone else occupied it.

He observed the rest of the room, finding the usual items one would see in such a room. There was nothing remarkable about it, and nothing that particularly stood out. On 'his' side of the room, he found nothing that belonged to him, which didn't come as such a big surprise. As he sat up in the bed, he felt a small tweak on his bad, not so much pain anymore as soreness, probably a result of the battle he had with the intense fire Atlantean in Paris. He recalled the intensity that battle provided, which brought a smile to his lips. He remembered that the Atlantean never did die, as he hadn't gotten a chance to kill him, which meant if Delta, Oakley and the others did take him with them, he may still be alive. A chance to fight the man again was something he wouldn't be against. James turned around towards the window behind his bed, and observed the sky. If they were still around England (as he hoped, but had no way of knowing), then judging by the position of the sky in the air, he had likely slept a good portion of the morning away, which meant James had been out for well over twelve hours. As he looked across his body, he saw that many of his wounds he receive were either healed or healing, with bandages in places where the wounds still existed.

Eager to find out where exactly he was, James decided to rise himself and take a tour of his new home, for however long it would be. He stood up, and looked around in the closet closest to his bed, and to his surprise, found shirts that, if they weren't his, closely mirrored that which he would be accustomed to wearing. He quickly put on a sky-blue shirt and darker blue jeans, put on his shoes which were by the bed, and proceeded out the door. There were quite a bit of younger people around, which confirmed James' suspicions of this being something along the lines of a school. As he toured around, he understood the gist of where he stayed, from the dining hall and kitchen to the gymnasium and 'Relaxation' room. There was even a swimming pool, and an expansive backyard. In essence, it had everything. But to James, it had nothing. At least, that was how he felt the longer he roamed around. Sure, the degree of everything that this place offered was impressive, but it held no interest to him. This environment reminded him too much of home, of his own dorm back in university. Sure the rooms were bigger, the food was probably tastier, and the place was better furnished, but doubling nothing still made it just that: nothing.

What was worse was the one friend he thought he had around here seemed to be nowhere in sight, as he couldn't find Nate wherever he looked. Granted, he had given up looking for him quite early on after he had begun to be bored, but now he wondered if he was even around anymore. If it turned out that he no longer was, James might decide to leave the place which would offer him little else of what he truly wanted.

Which was...? he thought to himself. Perhaps he didn't even know. He did come with the promise from Oliver of being able to achieve more power, which was probably something James wanted. But he thought of it more as a means to an end. To what end? He wasn't sure. Not yet. But it was something he was beginning to think more about. This was but one of the thoughts that occupied his mind as he sat down in the backyard of the Atlantean Mansion, feeling the grass beneath his hands, staring up into the sky, completely bored out of his mind. It was perhaps the most prominent idea that he thought about now. What he said to Nate back in the bar when they had first met was the truth. He knew deep down that he was destined for big things, for great things. He knew he was meant for...more. Now, he just had to figure out exactly what that was.
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Old July 29th, 2013 (10:26 PM).
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James Hazen and Oliver "Vulture" Hansen - Atlantean Royal Mansion, Boston, England



Oliver's Theme Song: (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zsjzB-TKSG4)
Beau was one of the younger members of the Atlantean Royal Family, standing at a little over five foot, he was also one of the shorter Atlanteans around. Many didn't know Beau's name, not that he actively told them, but rather that he preferred the alias given to him: Blurr. So as he ran outside, a newspaper folded in his hand, his dark skin rippled and blurred, often going to the point of camoflaging him with his surroundings. It was always when he ran, that his ability became most active, thus giving rise to his alias. He only stopped when he reached his destination, looking down at the stoner-like James lying in the grass.

"You're 'im, aren't choo?" Beau said in his Cockney accent to the relaxing man.

As James sulked on the grass, feeling as if his day couldn't get any worse, some kid with the strangest, most stereotypically dirty English accent approached him. He glared at the kid from his spot on the grass, and motioned with his arm to go away. "Go away," He said bluntly, returning to watching the clouds. "You're looking for someone else."

"You're 'im! I know you ah! James Hazen, yeah? You're dat Americun, the killa." Beau handed James the latest edition of the Daily Telegraph folded up in his hand, the paragraph about him circled in red.

"...Other Atlanteans reported to be at the scene was an individual identified as ‘Coldsnap’, having impaled a fellow Atlantean during a hostile AUP attack on the Atlantean Registration Office in London, England and wanted American, James Hazen known as ‘Shocker’. ..."

"Wha-?" James questioned, looking back up at the teen from his spot, taking the newspaper that was handed to him. He scrolled through it, looking to find what exactly he was referring to. The article detailed the Atlantean incident yesterday, but it also saw fit to give James a nickname, an alias. "Shocker?" James said aloud to himself in disbelief and disdain. "What the f*ck?" He didn't know exactly how he felt about the nickname. He supposed it was interesting to get the recognition, but the name was just...horrid.

The article did however reveal one thing that he didn't know before. If James was now wanted, it meant that he had committed a crime. If he had to guess, this confirmed that he did in fact kill his manager at his job back in Hawaii. It was a strange feeling. People often said that taking one's first life would have the biggest impact on that person, but in his case, he didn't even know he did it until he found out about it in this article. It was strange, but finding out about it now had almost zero effect on him. In fact, he had hardly payed it any mind. After reviewing everything in the article, he looked back up at the kid, who was still standing next to him. "Whatever. Just...go away."

Feeling slightly dejected, Beau decided to stay, "Are you gonna go to prison? My bruva is in prison, he said its pre'y cool, y'know? You guys could meet up and like break out, yeah?" He didn't like being so far away from his brother, and if he were to escape, then Beau would be able to leave the mansion with him. "Can I get an autograff?" he asked James.

James sighed, realizing that he wouldn't be leaving without a bit of extra motivation. He stuck out two fingers, and delivered a slight but no doubt painful shock to him. "F*ck off," James said in a slightly raised voice as he released the shock from between his fingertips.

Oliver heared Beau yelp in pain, catching a glance of the boy nursing his wound, obviously dealt to him by no other than James. While he had been the one to offer James sanctuary within the Atlantean Royal Family, he did not know at the time that the man was a murderer. He seemed to strut around the place like he was bored of it, sick of being here and that he had somewhere better to be. This just made Oliver even more angrier at the guy, this was his home, and Oliver wouldn't let such a guy be mean to his friends.

"Oi!" He called out, walking swiftly over to James, "Stop hurting him, Hazen," he ordered as he drew nearer to the man lying on the ground. He seemed to shurg off Oliver's comment, making him even more furious. Who did this guy think he was? "What did you do that for, Hazen?"

Just as James was beginning to relax and settle back into the nice patch of grass he occupied, Oliver, the man who recruited him, approached him. James sighed even deeper, clearing getting irritated by all of the people that saw fit to make it their mission to bug him when he didn't want to be bugged. "I told the pr*ck to leave me alone, and he wouldn't go," He explained, turning away from the man and leaning back onto the grass now, gazing at the sky, while motioning with his hand for Oliver to leave him alone. "Just get away from me."

This was it. Oliver really disliked the man now, the way he cast him off like he was some fly, the way he treated everyone and everything like it was all a big annoyance, just his general arrogance frustrated him so. "No, I won't go away, Hazen, look, you acted like a d*ck, so apologise to Beau, he's only thirteen for christ sake!" Olivever glared at James menacingly.

James rolled his eyes, realizing again that another person in front of him wouldn't just leave him alone with his thoughts. Getting up off the grass in a hurry, he faced down Oliver, getting within a few feet from the man. "Go away, or I'll make you go." He declared threateningly. He glared at him intensely, waiting for his response. In the back of his mind, James was starting to think he might be having fun again.

"No I won't, Hazen," he almost spat out James' surname, "this is my home, these are my friends, you go away," he pushed James in the chest, "go back to whatever crevace you crawled out of. We don't want people like you here!" His heart began to run faster, if James was as much danger as Justin and the rest feared, then he would have to use his ability. His presence here had caused them all a big hassle, that their home might even be taken away from them.

"Heh..." James smirked, letting his body be forced back at Oliver's push. That was all of the motivation he needed to get going. It seemed like he was now making an excuse for something to happen, but now Oliver presented him with that opportunity. He closed his eyes and breathed in, trying to see if he could determine how much energy he had left inside his system to use against him. Tapping into his stored energy in his body, James determined that he was fairly low on energy, but he figured it would still probably be enough to take on this guy. "You just made my day," James said, powering up electricity into his right hand. The energy spurted out from his hands, the cackling of lightning came soon after, until his hand was filled with electricity. All at once, he sent the pure energy straight at Oliver.

The energy, that pure energy that arced from James' hand, surged into Oliver's chest, burning the cloth and skin where it entered. He felt it spread to every little corner, every extremity of his body. Of course, this didn't kill Oliver. He inhaled, sucking every little spark of electricity James sent at him, storing it interally within him. He could now feel his ability activating, supporting his body in it's consumption of the energy and converting it. Cracking his neck, he smiked at James, "Was that supposed to hurt? Come on, is that all you can put out?"

He turned his back on James, "Pathetic, Hazen, to think I had a higher idea of how powerful you were. You're just a weak, pathetic, arrogant little man." Inwardly, he kicked himself, he let himself get all riled up over this guy, and it turned out the guy was just a phoney.

Ah, ****, James thought inwardly to himself. He should have figured that in a place like the headquarters of an prominent Atlantean organization, there was bound to be fairly strong individuals who he shouldn't try to entangle with unless he had more power in him. What was worse was that they were outside with very little power sources which he could draw upon. Still, James didn't dare give up yet. He grinned, powering up both hands with more electricity than the first attack. He took note that his reserves were slipping fast, so if he wanted to beat this guy, it would have to be hard and fast. "I'm just getting warmed up," James replied, taking a few steps back, and now releasing the dual electrical balls at Oliver. As the energy departed his hands, he felt weakened from the lack of additional energy inside of his system. He wouldn't be able to keep up powerful attacks for much longer without the sufficient energy.

Oliver turned around, only to feel the balls of electricity power into him. He had just enough power drained from James' last attack to help him survive, but little to no to consume and convert the energy. Around him, sparks flew as the electricity disappated into the air. "You *sshole," he cussed, as they attack sent him backwards. Recovering, he faced James, the anger consumed him so that he could not stop holding back, letting his ability flow free. Bright wings, composed of energy burst forth from his shoulder blades, flaring in the sun, a glowing, ethereal beak covered his mouth and nose. Grabbing his ipod from his pants, Oliver broken it apart, consuming the last remnants of energy it held before turning back to James. "Do you really want to mess with me?" he screamed, his voice piercing the air around them. At windows and in doorways, students gathered, watching everything heat up.

Sprinting forward, Oliver launched himself at James, his wings propelling him harder into the man. "Caw Caw M*ther F*cker!" he screamed as he rammed his entire body into James'. Oliver was going to give the spectators a fight they were looking forward to.
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Old August 2nd, 2013 (04:57 AM).
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Julian Morales - Atlantean Unification Project HQ, Toulouse, France

Julian had been having a nice day today.

Despite the anguish that had been going on, the trouble that had been brewing, the work that had to be done because of Paris, he felt good. Content. Like his day was going to be easy and rather simple. Annie had tasked him with something that he had no problem with; taking care of those in the wards. Julian was a doctor before he was an Atlantean and found healing the sick to be something he was rather comfortable with. Hacking government files and such seemed very much out of his reach. Physical contact he was good with.

So far, everyone within the ward was doing well. Though his eyes were awful, using his other senses, he could somehow pinpoint pain (he wasn't sure how himself) and do everything he could to remove that pain. Some patients had been rather hesitant about an almost blind doctor treating them, but a few kind words of encouragement from his current companion, the great Jonathan Cooper, and patients would trust Julian with their lives (which they were anyways).

"Are you sure your ability isn't perhaps some kind of emotion calming?" Julian asked the old man, slowly stitching a new patient's wound. Cooper chucked and shook his head.

"No, Dr. Morales, there are some instances where I cannot calm Mr. Bernot down when he is in hysterics. Such as this morning..." Cooper sighed, his gaze dropping to his hands. "I feel sorry for poor Emilio. So much on his plate."

"I understand what you mean. So much has happened in such little time."

"Indeed."

"Well, it's not like it's a bad thing," a new voice came from the entryway, though Julian didn't have to raise his head to know who it was. "This place was growing boring. Nothing like a good unnatural disaster to shake things up."

"I hope you're not being serious, Ms. Green," Julian exhaled at her sarcasm, or whatever it was. It was rather rude and insensitive of Imogen to be like this towards the patients.

"Of course I'm not. Or am I? You'll never know," her heartbeat said otherwise. Julian sowed the last stitch, wrapped the wound and finally raised his head to look at Imogen. She certainly look less tired than anyone else in the facility.

"Are you here for a reason, Ms. Green?"

"Owch Julian, that hurt," she teased, pouting at the doctor. "Well, Annie said she spotted the fire kid and Little Miss Mayor being all secretive and such. She told me to deal with it but," she leant against the doorframe, studying her fingernails, "I have far better things to do than babysit."

Julian sighed heavily, removing his extra magnified glasses and replacing them with his usual ones. Imogen had always been unpleasant, but Julian had done his best to tolerate her behaviour. She was much like a child, always getting her way. She was too old to be taught otherwise now, so there was no point trying to argue.

"Are you to take my place and help the patients?" he gestured to the filled beds of the sleeping wounded. Though they were at peace now, Julian could only imagine their hysteria when they awoke.

"I told you, I have better things to do than babysit."

"Imogen, really! Don't be so oblivious to what is going on! People are dying!"

"Stop it," Julian felt a hand clasp on his shoulder and the stern voice of Cooper. "Don't worry, I'll take care of the hurt."

Julian breathed, almost smelling the sly smile coming from the young woman in front of him. Like he said, like a child. Always getting her way.

"Alright."

"Excellent. I'll go do those better things then. I'll talk to you later, sweeties," she then left, her high heeled boots making irritatingly loud snaps as they hit the ground. Julian did dislike her, like most people. He hoped that one day, she would understand how much she could hurt people with her words.

Julian thanked Cooper and took his leave, pulling coat tighter on his shoulders and making his way to the elevators. It was a quick trip to the bottom floor and like Imogen had told him, two recruits stood at the doors with Junior members looking rather confused. They had probably just called into Annie.

"Hello there," Julian greeted the recruits with a friendly smile and a bow of his head. "My name is Julian Morales. Is there something that I can help you two with?"


Frederick Salusbury - Atlantean Unification Project HQ, Toulouse, France

"Ah... haha," Freddie laughed at Agnes' jab at Delta. Of course, he hadn't spent a lot of time with Delta, but the feeling he got off her was "please go away". He had students like that, but he didn't have to work with students, he just had to teach them and most of the time, they pretended to learn. Agnes reminded him of his better students. The ones who listened, took notes, asked questions at the end of lectures.

"I was just thinking about, um, stuff. Kind of a lot going through my head now, you know what I mean? With the terrorists, Oakley and the unconscious guy..." Agnes began, frowning a little at the end of the sentence. Yes, it had all happened so fast. Freddie had just figured out how to walk and already people were using their powers to what seemed like their absolute limits.

"Freddie? Do you know who that man sending down meteors was yesterday? I saw him. At the top of the Eiffel Tower, I flew up there. He was glowing like a star. Why would... Why would anyone do what he did? Just because he could?"

She was certainly distressed, poor Agnes was. Freddie wobbled on his legs a little, taking this as a que to sit back against a bit of piping. Again, Agnes asking Freddie a question like this... it felt exactly like one of his History majors asking why King Henry did this or what made Saint Luke do that. Though he had no facts to go by, he had experience and it was all he could offer Agnes.

"W-Well," he started, rubbing his shaking fingers together, "I'm sure you can understand n-not all people are typically... u-uh, good. Yes, s-some people can do things just because... because they can. O-other times..." his hands moved to his chin, stroking the wispy beard he had grown since becoming a goat-man, "other times people do things... for a cause. B-because they b-believe it's right. Even though you and e-everyone else see it as wrong, others s-see it as a... necessary evil to achieve a g-g-greater goal."

It was an awful thing to think, and sometimes awful sacrifices achieved milestones in human history. Wars which ravaged thousands of families made the world see its mistakes and change its ways. Freddie could neither say these things were good or bad, he only documented them. Did that make him a awful human being?

"Do y-you understand?"
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Old August 4th, 2013 (01:04 PM).
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Austin Tseng and Nathaniel Calaway - Atlantean Royal Mansion



Austin sat in his usual corner of the Rec Room, messing around on his iPad. He was looking up some of the news articles from yesterday, the Paris Incident. The New York Times article was naturally Austin's first source.


"...Light Lad," Oh hell no. Austin kept reading. These names were terrible! Metal Maiden, Magician Girl, Sir Shock?! That had to be Minerva, Kim, and the new guy. Austin remembered James from the helicopter, kept saying something about a Nate, who turned out to be the dude Austin saved from those women...

Austin read on, learning about the public responses to Paris. It seemed a lot of people were afraid of the Atlanteans even more now, and probably for a good reason. There's no telling how many whackjobs with crazy Magic powers there are out there. Austin just hoped that he wouldn't be automatically labeled as a terrorist beause of his blood. It wouldn't be the dumbest aspect Americans have identified terrorists with.

All of this talk about America and New York had Austin a little homesick. He missed his apartment, Dad's shop, his parents and friends. Hell, even his old school would be nice to see. It hadn't even been a month yet, and it felt like a year. He had grown a lot since he came to the Family. He was stronger than he had ever been taking karate lessons only after a week of training with Antonia, and he discovered his power could be used in more ways than just changing the brightness. Studying physics at the mansion had brought light (excuse the pun) to some of the more complicated aspects that Austin could perform with his ability. Bending, reflecting, amplifying, and starting to control the light spectrum...there was a whole world of possibilities he hadn't thought of. Photons, he discovered that it was photons that rooted his power. He had looked up some of the ways photons were manipulated without super powers. Shoot a beam at a 45 degree angle that was semi-reflective, which halves the photons. Then continue with smaller mirrors and different angles to isolate a single photon, which can then be accelerated into its own beam, only scaled down to the size of an electron...particle acceleration. Photon beams, like the ones Dad used to cut diamonds at the shop. It was exhilerating to think about, but seemingly impossible to accomplish. Austin didn't know how to make a semi-mirror, much less angle a handful of them perfectly to separate photons. And even if he got that far, how would he accelerate a photon that small whout losing his grip on it? And even THEN, it would just be a single photon, not a consistant beam to cut through anything. A single photon could just slip between particles. He would need to have a constant ray to do anything with it.

In theory, it was a really cool trick. In reality, he would probably need years and years of training. At least, for now, Austin decided to just stick to learning refraction. Now finished with his article, he closed his iPad case and slid it in his backpack.

"Hands off of me!" A voice called out from the entrance of the Rec Room.

"B-but your wounds haven't healed yet..."

"If I have to spend another minute in that white room, I will have a meltdown. I, ah!, will be fine..." It didn't take a genius to figure out it was Nathaniel, arguing with one of the nurses of the Atlantean Royal Family as he groaned, grasping his bandaged torso with his free arm as the other was held in place in a sling. Injured in his fights at Paris, Nathaniel had been diagnosed with several broken ribs, a slightly dislocated shoulder and a number of other nagging injuries. The worst damage was to his mind. He felt weak and helpless, once fashioning himself much stronger. But perhaps the worst part was the inner agony of some of the decisions he had made. Getting involved in the whole Atlantean conflict, a war even, and then having to make the decisions the soliders in all wars must make: to kill or be killed. Nathaniel has killed, twice as far he was concerned, and had yet to learn how to deal with the consequences of that. Sitting in that room with nothing but his thoughts would be the most vile form of torture he could come up with. He needed to leave that white room of madness. The Rec Room just happened to be the easiest place to go. As he entered the room, he collasped on a couch and sighed. "Leave me nurse. I'll come back...eventually," Nathaniel said, before his eyes caught Austin. "Hey, you are Austin right?" From Nathaniel remembered, a member of the Atlantean Royal Family named Austin picked up the wounded Nathaniel and brought him to safety. Nathaniel was slipping in and out of consciousness, but when he finally came to, he naturally asked how he got there. Supposedly James was here too. Nathaniel wondered how he was doing. Probably getting himself in trouble. He always was. "If you are, I want to thank you for helping me back there. In Paris."

Austin's train of thought was broken by Nate's entry, but he didn't mind. He was interested in meeting the person whose life he had saved not 24 hours ago.

"Yeah, I'm Austin, aka 'Light Lad'," Austin smirked at his superhero identity, "And no problem, I'd hate to see anybody get left behind in that firestorm." He stuck his hand towards Nate for a shake, "Welcome to the Family?"

With a wince, Nathaniel reached out for a handshake with his good hand and shook it gingerly. The whole gesture hurt, but he would never deny a handshake. "Thank you. Happy to be here." Nathaniel leaned back. "What do you know about the family? I don't know much myself to be honest." Nathaniel's mission for the Librarian was to get information, so he thought he would get straight to business, while maintaining some level of innocence.

Austin wasn't exactly sure how to respond to Nathaniel's question. What did he know about the Family? They were Atlantean nobility, and...they trained people? They seemed to like handling Atlantean business, like the Paris incident and contacting the UN.

"Well...they train young Atlanteans, like me, to become stronger with their powers. Also, this place serves as kind of a sanctuary, I'm sure I'd be a pariah back in New York City if anyone found out about me...but at the same time, they do a lot of political things involving humans. I guess you could say they're the voice of the Atlanteans in the world congress. The representitives. Anyway, I'm mainly here so I can lay low while this whole tension passes...and learning how to do cool stuff with my power is fun too. Other than that, not much I can tell ya. Some rumours say they've got a shady agenda, but I think it's just teenager bullsh*t."

A shady agenda. That piqued Nathaniel's interest more than anything. He expected the rest of Austin's story and for the most part that lined up with his expectations. As opposed to the AUP, which seemed to be an organization rather than a political body, the Royal Family had to have some organization and political sway. That much made Nathaniel more comfortable with them. The Librarian was difficult to trust. But he expected the Royal Family to be that much harder to trust. He would bring up his concerns to James later. "I see. Well, I hope I fit in then," Nathaniel forced a chuckle because laughing would hurt too much. "Light Lad is your codename. Can you control light then?"

"Codename? More like codelame," Austin joked, "And yeah, I make things dark or bright, mirrors, etcetera. It's pretty useless, but in-depth." He thought back to his earlier muse. "Well, maybe someday it'll turn out to be really kickass. They say you have ice powers. Pretty rad I bet?" Maybe Nate could turn out to be a really great friend, he seemed nice enough.

Nathaniel smiled and closed his good hand. He opened it up and in his palm revealed a small statue of a human. This moment reminded him of the time meeting Oakley in the center. "It has its moments. I wasn't particularly useful in Paris, but maybe the Royal Family can help me in that respect."

"Yeah, they're good for training. I've even been picking up some martial arts while I'm here. Antonia knows a lot of fighting styles, you should talk to her to learn some hand to hand maybe? It can help a lot if your power doesn't seem useful, like mine often does. I've been trying to learn some kung fu from her, but I just don't have the discipline needed to be as good as she is. But it's good to at least know the basics, most don't. Other than that, I'm sure they have trainers here for other field skills, probably a shooting class you could take. Defensive stuff, as well as offense. Some guys here are like agents I hear, training to do some sort of secret assassin stuff." Austin laughed, "Yeah right, more like secret asinine stuff."

Nathaniel's interest was once again piqued. The possiblity of learning martial arts was pretty enticing. Nathaniel's "fighting style" was based purely on wrestling and street fighting. He lacked any form of style. Discipline, he liked to think he had that, but only a training session would help figure that. Maybe he would look up this Antonia. She was probably butch if she did martial arts. "I doubt I would fit their secret assassin stuff model," Nathaniel joked. "I hardly seem the sneaky type. You, on the other hand, have potential for that."

"Yeah, I don't see you hiding in a cardboard box anytime soon," Austin laughed, "But it seems like you'd make one hell of a brawler. I don't know about me, I'm about the right size and I've been learning some optical illusion stuff with my powers...But sneaky around and slitting people's throats? I don't know if I could bring myself to do that in cold blood. It just doesn't seem right, killing them without a fight."

"Killing isn't right."

"Yes, you're right...but sometimes it is necessary. Greater good and all that yadda yadda."

Nathaniel bit his tongue and clenched his good hand. He wanted to do nothing more than chatise Austin for his statements. To tell him that killing was never an answer. That there was a better way and that killing someone could never lead to a "greater good". Austin was unaware of the hard truth about killing. He didn't know what it meant to end someone's life. The pain, the suffering, the hate that it brings out. He didn't know the burden that weighed down on Nathaniel's heart. The sinking feeling in his chest from the guilt constantly eating away at Nathaniel was difficult to bear. He knew nothing. Perhaps what it made worse was that Nathaniel knew he had to deal with this hard truth himself. Any resolve Nathaniel was to make following the wake of this ardous few weeks would be his alone. Nathaniel sighed without realizing it before rising from his comfortable seat. "I'm going for a walk," he said.

Austin was put off by Nate's tension at the lad's comment. Sometimes sacrifices had to be made for a cause, right? It was true Austin hadn't ever thought of those sacrifices much, and after all, it was not like he had ever had to do anything as drastic. But the man in Paris...Austin hadn't even given a second thought about ending his life. True, he didn't in the end, but it wasn't a major concern of his to let him live. Then again, he hadn't been necessarily trying to kill him either. Austin just nodded when Nate got up to go for a walk. He let the hulk of a man pass. But Austin was suddenly curious as the where Nate was going. He watched the new comer leave out the door, and started to follow him, keeping his distance of course.

Assassin... he kept thinking in his head. He couldn't quite decide whether it had a negative or positive connotation to it...

Nathaniel paid no real attention if Austin followed him or not, still consumed by his own thoughts. Voices popped in his head and memories swarmed him. He found himself questioning what he did, was doing and will do. The vile actions he committed ate away at him, despite easy justifications for them. The motives behind each of these "factions" were at odds and any degree of trust Nathaniel vested in them could easily break with a simple question. It made making his next choice so difficult. Will he continue to trust the Librarian, a gentleman who seemed geninue enough? Will he take a leap of faith on the Altantean Royal Family, a group who seems to have good intentions despite Austin's warnings? What of the Atlantean Unification Project who may have their hearts in the right place? No matter what Nathaniel found a hard time believing any of them. Making the big decisions were never easy and Nathaniel knew he was making it hard for himself, but he knew whatever choice he was going to make would change everything.

The absent minded wandering somehow put Nathaniel outside, where he could see a crowd gathering. Curiousity got the better of him, and Nathaniel took this distraction as a blessing in disguise. Really, he needed anything to get his mind off of everything.

Caw Caw M*ther F*cker!" Hearing that just made everything more interesting. Nathaniel quickened his pace by half a step and loomed closer, using his large frame to plow through the audience. He arrived in time to see a familiar face be rammed by someone.

Austin suddenly quickened his pace as he heard the sounds of a fight ahead. It didn't sound like anyone's voice he really knew that was yelling. Glancing out a window, he saw sparks flying. James... Was he attacking the family?

Once outside, he saw a group of onlookers (of which Nate had joined) watching James fight...Oliver? Austin had definitely heard of him, but never had never spoken to him in person...what is going on?

"James...?" He got himself in another fight. Hopefully, Nathaniel wouldn't need to bail him out.
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Old August 6th, 2013 (12:27 AM).
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Dominique Bisset and Delta Mayor--- Toulouse, France

"Your turn, Dom."

Dominique read the signs and eyed the street corners, trying to pinpoint exactly where they were. He had to be honest, looking back at it, he'd never seen this building before. Maybe that was its charm, being hidden in plain sight. That would explain why there weren't protesters and police officers storming the building. He'd say there was a glamor over the building, but there wasn't enough litter.

"I think I know this place..." He muttered to himself, scanning over the buildings that had that annoying sort of familiarity. Yeah... He knew this place. He never shopped here, but he'd driven passed a few times here and there. Amazing how he could drive passed a building over and over and not once look at it. He wondered if he would have noticed something was odd about this place, so odd in fact that he would step out of his car and walk inside at the same time a kid with fire powers and a girl with crystal arms decided to leave. He looked up and down the sidewalk and out at the street. No one coming their way, no one stepping out of their car doors. No one saw this place, no one would ever see it, not unless something terrible happened at least. Astounding how ignorant people suddenly were when you knew a secret. Astounding how he only needed to scream out their whereabouts and suddenly everyone would know. He had the power to do so, had the urge to, and yet--

"Hello there." Dominique frowned. "My name is Julian Morales. Is there anything I can help you two with?" Right when he was getting to the good part someone--apparently Julian--interrupted him mid-thought. That must have been that babysitter Del mentioned earlier.

"No, not at all. Just looking for the shopping center," he answered without looking back. He pointed down the street to their left. "We go this way."

A grin planted itself on Delta's face, the AUP worked quickly. A babysitter was better than busting a window, but not by much. She gave Julian Morales a look over before she turned to face the outside world. It wasn't as if she was going to recognize anything, hell, Delta doubted she would've knew what city they where in if it hadn't been told to her. This was her first time in France, she'd hardly left Poland except for a couple vacations and personal field trips. Delta too had noticed the lack of public presence. There wasn't people demanding their deaths or wanting justice to be done, no, it was quiet. An eerie quiet that brought on those moments where one is left alone to think, replay memories, and dwell on the past. If Delta had to guess she would say that not even the Royal Family knew where they were, maybe.

There were strange politics that came along with this 'new' world full of Atlanteans and Delta didn't like it one bit. Everyone was playing a different angle and there was another layer of truth or deception behind the words they had carefully chosen. Sometimes it was both. It was a chess game and Delta had yet to see the whole board. Instead the focus she had was centered on the smaller details, as she was constantly forgetting to take that crucial step back. She was putting one foot in front of the other to follow Dom's lead.

"Did you grow up here?" Delta called out, as she observed the scenery. At any moment now she expected the Royal Family to fall from the sky.

Dom shook his head. "Paris. I just go to school here." Toulouse was a great city, but it was nothing like its neighbor Paris. Even a short memory of his childhood brought pain to his heart. He wondered if he could still find his old favorite places in the rubble. Probably not.

Honestly he didn't really want to talk about Paris or his suddenly tragic history. Not right now anyways, and not with her. Dom glanced over his shoulder, seeing Julian for the first time. He followed behind them just as told, Dom was sure. He maybe... Possibly... Probably wasn't as bad some of the members and Del had him believe was the entirety of the AUP, but...

"We're not going to keep Spectacles around, are we?" He asked in a lowered voice.

"It's best not," replied Delta in the same lowered tone.

Paris... That meant... him... his family... Delta couldn't hide the shock registered on her face fast enough for it to go unnoticed. The last thing he wanted was pity, so Delta politely looked away. She knew what it was like, but she couldn't express the emotions she wanted to because Delta didn't know how to. For now it was a topic she wouldn't dare to breach unless she felt it was necessary. Or, his family had moved from Paris and nothing happened to them. Something told her that wasn't true, Delta bit her lip as she wondered how they would lose their sitter.

There was something off about how he moved, like, he wasn't relying on purely on sight. An idea pieced itself together, "He seems like he's legally blind or something. A few twist and turns ought to lose him. If we do it quietly."

Quietly, huh? Dom had seen the look on Del's face, but pretended he hadn't by planning an escape route. He just had to find those twists and turns. "Let me think..." He wished he had shopped here, then he would have had a much better map of the area. Giving someone the slip wasn't easy when you had to remember where all of the streets went. Luckily the Lord was on their side.

On another block a crowd of people were gathered. It wasn't an exceptionally large group, he would estimate around fifty people. None of them had signs or anything that looked particularly special. The biggest thing they had in common was that they all looked to one man standing on a wooden box. Judging by his fervent gesticulations he was talking about something important. The man had a megaphone, but from where they walked it sounded like blaring in the distance.

Dom gestured to the crowd. "How's something like that?"

A crowd was a great plan, the possibility of Julian being able to keep track of them in it was slim. Even slimmer if they were stealthy about it. What the crowd had gathered for Delta couldn't tell from here. Not that she'd be able to understand them as they'd most likely be speaking and chanting in French. Why the Unification Project felt that they needed a babysitter was beyond her. Okay, she killed someone, but she wasn't going to kill innocent people and give away the top-secret headquarters. Julian wasn't someone she knew or really ever heard about, which was unfortunate for him. Maybe he wouldn't get in too much trouble for losing them, not that Delta cared either way.

"It's perfect," Delta responded with a grin that hinted at mischief.

Not long after the three of them had made it across both streets and were approaching the crowd. Since they started it had gotten a tad bigger, a few interested people latching on like the outside rim was made of velcro. By now they could hear the speakers words loud and clear. The man was speaking out against Atlanteans.

"We must drive this deadly force out of France!" The man spoke powerfully in French to the crowd. They responded with shouts of agreement, clapping, or just nods of the head. On the outside of the crowd a woman, probably a friend of the man, handed them both t-shirts with a short line about ending the Atlantean assault before going on to the next passerby. He may have read it then, but they still had a goal in mind. As politely as possible, Dominique pushed through the crowd of protesters, making sure they didn't go only straight to make it harder for Julian to follow. "The children of Paris won't ever see this tyranny end, but yours can!" Being so close to Paris, he wondered how many of these they would run into.

Breaking out of the crowd, a quick look back gave no sign of Julian. "Alright, let's go."

Unable to read a vast majority of the shirt except a word she assumed translated to Atlantean Delta tossed it on the ground once she entered the crowd. As Delta further immersed herself in the crowd, she strayed from Dom for a moment to make it that much harder for Julian by giving him two separate targets. There were women, men, and children all soaking up what the man had to say like little sponges. To ignore what the man was saying was easy given he was saying it in a language Delta hadn't any knowledge in. A shoulder slammed into hers, Delta glared at the man who turned and gave a wink. A knee to the groin changed the man's facial expression into something Delta felt was more suitable. Afraid of losing Dom and worried about blowing their cover Delta trudged on, but not before yelling a few more explicit words.

After ducking, dodging, and weaving Delta appeared on the outside of the crowd once more. Dom was right in front of her, thank the lucky stars. Twisting her head backwards confirmed Julian wasn't in sight, though to underestimate someone who had been at this longer wasn't necessary the smartest idea.

"What was that all about?" Delta resisted the urge to look back.

"Paris. They hate us," Dom answered maybe a little too casually. He wasn't sure how much he agreed with those protesters. It was true, so much had happened with the Atlanteans and thinking about it made him feel angry, if not hateful, as well. He hadn't decided whether he was mad at the Atlanteans as a whole, the Atlanteans that killed, or the Royal Family. He couldn't decide completely yet, but he knew the Royal Family was not on his list of favorites. Still, whatever he thought, he didn't think he would ever fully agree with the protesters, or at least the man speaking. As they weaved through the crowd and walked away now, he had heard more than one call for violence, military action, death penalties for Atlanteans labeled as "too strong", too much. It made him wonder what that meant for him. He had been in Paris, but he hadn't done anything wrong, had he?

Dom opened up the t-shirt he still kept in his hands and read the large, red text out loud. "Cure the Atlantean disease!" He turned to its back. "Want to know how? Visit Atlantidote.com!" Dom grinned with amusement. "I think I'll keep it. What do you say?"

A bunch of vile creatures wanted to revolt against them, as if they were a virus that could be cured. Another stage of this would be countries trying to force Atlantean to be used as wartime weapons, beings that they can control to do their bidding for them. Paris wasn't their fault as a whole, their kind was separated all across the globe without a proper home to return to and a lack of guidance. Chaos, it was, a foolish plan by the Atlantean Royal Family had caused it. Hadn't they thought of the endless consequences before they just abruptly decided to reveal Atlanteans to the world? There was bound to be rogue Atlanteans who thought that they could do what they pleased whenever they wanted with god knows what powers. It was true, Paris, Berlin, and whatever happened in Egypt were the only representation the public had of them. Delta figured that Atlanteans needed to present a unified front to prove they weren't a threat.

Delta couldn't hide the disgust on her face, now that she knew what the shirt had said. "I think they wasted good money on such tacky shirts." She relaxed her posture. "...If there was a cure, would you take it?"

Dominique shook his head. "Nah, I've got stuff to do with it first." Personal stuff. "But afterwards?" Dom shrugged. "Yeah, I'd take it. It's more trouble than it's worth." A lot more trouble. Honestly, what genuine good had come out of the Atlanteans since the Royal Family's big reveal? Not any he knew about. He wished instead of terrorist attacks and calls for the end of Atlanteans he could open up a newspaper and see something about a miracle healer or a man who could bring good fortune. The way things are going, it seemed more likely that those people were using their powers to hurt or steal than anything good. He wanted to say it would, but he didn't think the next big disaster to come would shock him. It seemed inevitable no matter how much he wished it wasn't. Looking at the shirt again, he no longer got amusement from it. It was like holding an omen in his hands.

Dom tossed the shirt into the first trashcan they passed. "So, what about you? You don't seem like you mind it all too much."

She nodded in agreement as they kept walking. "No, I don't think I would ever willing give them up." Then sighed. "I would take a cure for... others things."

Being an Atlantean had to be one of the best developments in her life thus far. Her life before this seemed unreal and pathetic, almost if it had happened years ago or to someone else entirely. It was as if Delta had fully awakened from a deep slumber when her long since forgotten heritage was unveiled. A brand new life was gifted to her and had brought her joy and excitement, emotions that she hadn't felt in a long time. To go back to standard living was impossible and irresponsible, there were certain things could, no, should accomplish now. Power was a great motivator, the harder she pushed the more adept she got in her abilities. All of this had changed her Delta had taken a life. Crushed a man, another Atlantean no less, into pieces with a simple kick leaving nothing but his head behind. The regret and guiltiness of it was all vastly receding, there was nothing she could do to change that fact. Nothing could change the fact that she wanted to do it again, again, and again. Like constant hunger it gnawed at her, always on the edges of her thoughts asking, pleading, begging to be acted on. There was only so much strength that could go towards actively fight against it.

Not to mention the sudden tirade of other more personal feelings. Another identity to figure out, another irremovable label to slap on. It hurt. It all hurt. She wanted it gone, she hadn't asked for it, she hadn't wanted it, and it wasn't fair that she had gotten it. All these feelings made her question who she was as a person, who was Delta at the core? Numb. She. Was. Numb. And for now that was enough.

"Hey, hey you." The rugged voice brought Delta back from her trance and stopped her in her tracks.

A scraggly man, about Dom's height and Delta's weight, who clearly hadn't shaven in a good month or bathed for that matter, eagerly approached the duo. He wore a smug grin and a terrible choice in clothing (he must have had the same stylist the AUP had gotten for their interior.) His French was fast, but his eyes were even faster as they shifted from Delta to Dom, back to Delta and then to Dom before he settled firmly on Delta. His grimy fingers fingered the inside of his buttoned coat, as if he was anxious about opening it in front of them.

Oh God. Dom cringed before he could stop himself. He wasn't sure who or what was standing before him, but he was sure he wanted it gone completely. If the good Lord didn't bless him with blindness he was sure the clothing would do the job or maybe the smell would burn away his corneas after it finished with his nose. The way he looked at them both was equally unsettling and he wished they could walk by, but unfortunately his reaction confirmed that the man had been noticed.

"Excuse me, we're trying to get somewhere."

The man instinctively stuck his hand out in front of him and made the gesture that signaled for them to 'wait a minute' to make sure that they didn't go anywhere. He rummaged through his large coat with his other hand, why he didn't just open it all the way up was a mystery. When his hand returned it had secured three watches that were held tightly between his fingers. They looked nice and clean, a complete contrast to the hand that held them. Two of which were gold and the last silver, each of them were clunker than the next.

"Now, what I have here are special watches. One of a kind. Atlantean watches." Switching his primary gaze to Dom. "Get one for your girlfriend. A gift. She'll love you for it and even repay you in... other ways." He winked for emphasis.

Delta began to pick up the context clues to follow the conversation, seeing watches and the state of this man it was clear was trying to sell them. His gaze unnerved her there was just something creepy about it. At least they weren't being robbed.

Dominique raised his brow. "Really now?" He preferred to ignore the girlfriend comment and did so without a second thought towards it. "He wants to sell us watches," he told Delta in English. "Atlantean watches." He hadn't hear anything about watches being born with the Atlantean gene, so whatever this was must have been a scam, but then again the man's hook was too ridiculous to believe anyways.

Dom put on a smile, as if he were really interested in the product. "So what kind of Atlantean watches? They've got powers or somethin'?"

"Yeah, yeah. Powers. Cool powers. Y'know?" He fiddled with one of the watches before he gave another quick smile. "You won't know which until you put it on."

Delta let out a light chuckle. She had only ran into a street scammer once and that had ended terribly for him. He got too handsy, Delta did the same except for with her fists. For someone to capitalize on the Atlantean revelation wasn't surprising. Why watches? It was an unusual choice. Watching how fidgety the man, who occasionally threw a look over both shoulders, was made Delta think of how they were trying to avoid dealing with their official babysitter.

"Spectacles might catch up..." Delta warned, leaning in closer.

Oh yeah. The near mob mentality of the protesters and this more recent conman took Dom's mind away from their initial goal. "Uh, yeah," Dom said as he began to walk passed the stranger, "I just remembered we were doing something important. I'll find you later, okay?"

"Wait!" The man gripped Dom's left wrist tightly. "If... the Atlantean watches are gone. It's not my fault." Nodding to Dom and Delta the man walked off fast making a sharp turn down the nearest alley.

A shudder shot up Dom's spine as soon as the man touched his wrist. The strange, dirty man's sudden invasion of his personal space and the fact that he was--without a doubt--completely disgusting almost left him paralyzed. Almost. Luckily for his life, Dom had just enough strength to snatch his hand back, but before the sound of revulsion could escape his lips the man had already disappeared down an alleyway. For the second time Dom cringed, feeling as if maggots were crawling up his arm at this very moment. He had the sudden urge to drop everything and find the nearest shower, as if not doing so within the next second would be enough time to leave this stain permanently stuck to his body. He wiped the remnants of the stranger's hand, solidifying his outfit's need to be burned at the first chance. However, it was that same motion that took his mind off of it completely.

Dom eyes widened and he pulled his wrist up quickly in front of him. Without a moment's hesitation a wave of heat burst from his body in all directions, powerful and intense like his anger.

"That f*cker!" Without a warning Dom burst out running, following the conman's path.

Delta flinched as she felt the sudden temperature increase. A confused look sat upon her face. "Dom...?"
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Old August 6th, 2013 (08:40 AM).
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Agnes Johansson - Atlantean Unification Project HQ, Toulouse, France

"W-Well," he started, rubbing his shaking fingers together, "I'm sure you can understand n-not all people are typically... u-uh, good. Yes, s-some people can do things just because... because they can. O-other times..." his hands moved to his chin, stroking the wispy beard he had grown since becoming a goat-man, "other times people do things... for a cause. B-because they b-believe it's right. Even though you and e-everyone else see it as wrong, others s-see it as a... necessary evil to achieve a g-g-greater goal."

Agnes frowned a little again, listening to the ex-teacher's explanations. She looked out over the city of Toulouse for a quiet moment.

"Do y-you understand?"

"Yeah... I guess I can understand that. Not sure I believe any kind of evil is okay if it hurts someone though. But in any case, I guess the higher-ups don't want us to worry about Paris, do they? Uugh. I just lost some sleep over it, is all." Agnes sighed and ran a hand through her hair, suddenly remembering that she was fresh out of bed, without a shower and without even being properly dressed. She hadn't thought about that, but now she became embarrassingly self-aware.

"Haha, actually I haven't fetched breakfast yet, what time is it?"

The time was a bit too much, they both established with a quick check. Agnes sure had slept in. "I think I'll go and freshen up quickly and then try to see if there's still someone willing to give me a morning snack in the cafeteria. Or pour some coffee into me, at least! See you in the cafeteria, perhaps?" she said with a wink and a pat on Frederick's arm.

Before Agnes went inside again, she threw a glance down on the streets again. And what she saw made her a bit confused. Was that Delta? And some other guy. Leaving the HQ. Oh well, maybe they were granted a leave on this day off. What Delta did was not her business, thankfully. She shuddered as the memory of the crystal girl decapitating a frozen man played in her mind once more.
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  #137    
Old August 7th, 2013 (12:37 AM). Edited September 5th, 2013 by Lokiepie.
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Charlotte Hunter and Kieran Davis - Atlantean Royal Mansion, Boston, England


It was the gentle clink of a plate setting down next to her that caused Charlotte to withdraw from her thoughts. Glancing to her side, Charlotte watched as Nick settled next to her, plate piled with food and his limp seemly better from the pervious day.

“How you doing? Nurse.” His voice was light and there was a smirk smeared across his lips which pushed them into a lopsided grin as he met her gaze.

Charlie grimaced at this, almost flinching at the nickname before slowly closing the screen of the laptop. It had only been a day, but already the internet had been filled with news articles. The slanderous litter being strewn across almost every website Charlotte lazily regarded over her morning cup of coffee.

‘Nurse’ was apparently one of the nicknames given to her which she had not completely agreed with, but on looking at the other nicknames bestowed onto her peers she considered herself lucky. ‘Metal maiden’ and ‘light lad’ were pretty dire by comparison. This did not mean that she revelled in being called the new nickname however.

Sighing, Charlie placed down her cup and shifted slightly in her seat to set her company with an unpleasant gaze, making the boy next to her squirm uncomfortably.
“If you ever call me that again. Nick.” Charlie said, her voice dangerously cool “Next time you come to me with a bad injury, I may, just may accidently twist your injured ankle the wrong way”

Nick as this paled a little, leaning away from his friend as if she had suddenly turned into some poisonous snake. “Jeez Charl. I was just making a joke, ya know? You just seemed a little up tight and with you being rushed off to the med bay yesterday, I just wanted to cheer you up.”
Watching her company’s shoulders slump, Charlie felt the a tiny flicker of guilt began to niggle at her from somewhere near the back of her skull. She remembered very little of the day before after she had crawled out the fire. Snippets of memory snatched through the darkness, but nothing was clear. All she truly knew was that she fell in the street and then awoke at 5am this morning in the nurses’ room, the cotton bed sheets tucked in around her like a cocoon.

“I’m sorry.” Charlie sighed, letting her shoulders slump this time. “I guess I am a little up tight.” This sentence came with a heavy sigh as the girl pressed the heel of her hand to her forehead, leaning forward to allow her hand to take the weight of her head as if her neck could no long hold it. With her other hand she stroked the back of her neck, where beneath a white bandage, lay an angry burn. Tracing the folds of the fabric with her finger tips, Charlie mused over the pervious day. She had not faired well and that was putting it kindly. Cuts, bruises as well as a number of particularly painful burns coloured her pale flesh in pinks and purples. A broken ankle and a few snapped ribs were the worst of it however, which was considerably lucky. Yet regardless of these injuries, Charlie knew her time off was limited.
People in the academy still needed tending too and she tried not to think about the amount of reading she would have to complete before her next test.

Nick remained silent for the best bit of a minute or so as he regarded his friend, his expression softening, before he reached over and very carefully put a hand on the girl’s back.

“You did well.”

“You don’t even know what I did out there.”

“Don’t need to, to know you’ve done good. Just try to relax, ok?”

Charlie huffed, puffing out her cheeks a little before pulling back her hair, exposing her face. Relaxing was the last thing she could do at a time like this, the continuous urge to check up on the other who had been out on the field kept cropping up, but so far Charlie had seen none of them.

“You know, you looked kinda sweet curled up in that guy’s arms.” Nick commented, twigging that his highly strung friend wasn;t just gonna relax on the command.

Charlotte froze at this comment, swinging her head round to stare at Nick as her mouth dropped open.
“What guy?”

“You know, the one with the bone arms? Dark hair, tall, suave looking shirt.”

Charlie felt her heart stop momentarily. “ You mean Kieran?”

“Yeah that’s his name!” Nick beamed, as he picked up his fork and began to shovel food into his mouth. “Had you all wrapped up and cosy in his arms as they got you out of the chopper and down to the med wing.”

Charlie at this, felt her insides cringe. She had been carried to the med wing by Kieran? She was of course curious how she had been transported from her spot in Paris to back home but now larger more embarrassing questions began to pop up. Her mind playing a twisted various of whack a mole, only with bitter and embarrassing thoughts.

The most worrying of all being centred around how she had changed her clothes when unconscious.

“Please tell me Kieran’s involvement with passed out Me ceased when he got me to the med bay.”

Nick narrowed his eyes, a wicked grin holding back poorly disguised chuckles. His eyebrows disspearing into his fringe. “Why? What’s wrong Charl? We embarrassed?”

“Oh shut up!” The sentence was hissed through clenched teeth as, with a furious swipe, Charl grabbed her coffee and took a large swig. She had never been much of a damsel in distress type of girl, so this was a new thing for her and one which she was not entirely sure how to deal with.

Nick on the otherhand, clearly delighted with Charlie’s discomfort, rose to the occasion with chuckled chorus ‘Charlotte and Kieran, sitting in a tree’

Kieran walked past the room just as Nick finished his singing, raising his eyebrow as Charlotte blush and Nick held his hand to his mouth like he had said something he wasn't suppose to. "Nice to see you up and running, Charlie," he commented, leaning against the doorway, "what's the occasion for singing?" he smirked.

“Kieran!” Nick beamed, slowly sliding his hand down from his mouth and grinning, trying his best not to laugh. “Sorry about that, I was just filling Charlie in on yesterday’s details. Right?” Nick smiled, meeting Charlotte’s furious gaze with raised eye brows.

“She doesn’t remember much.” Nick continued after a minute where Charlotte failed to reply, her face set into permanent deep furrowed frown, before Nick stood and picked up his plate. “On that awkward note however, I have to go. Places to be and people to see.” He waved to Charlotte, whom did not return the gesture, as he pushed in his chair and walked past Kieran with a small smile, eyes set firmly to the ground in fear of bursting into laughter once more.

Dick Charlie thought bitterly, as she watched Nick’s retreating back before quickly returning her focus back to Kieran with an apologetic nod.

“It’s good to see you got out of the chaos unscathed.” Charlie tried in greeting, fiddling with a lock of hair nervously. It was a poor attempt to cover Nick’s tracks but then again these situations had never been her forte. Yet despite the poor timing of Nick’s singing and Kieran’s arrival, a small bit of Charlie was glad Kieran had turned up. She had a lot of questions. “So, what exactly did happen yesterday? Nick didn’t exactly know much and the news articles aren’t exactly helpful either.” Charlie pushed, happy to get off the opening topic. “Did everyone get back ok?”

"Yeah, everyone was fine thankfully," Kieran thought back to the destruction they had been amidst, he had wanted to stay and help with the clean up, but Justin and River had told them it was better they not be seen at the site. They had their own injured to worry about, "and we got two new guys, but one of them is apparently causing quite a hassle for Justin and that, hence the free day today." He was kinda glad to get away from the mundane day to day classes and relax with the other students, but after the event everyone was still on edge.

"You should be careful though, you nearly could have died back there. I didn't notice you go down until some man came to get me, he was yelling in French at me pointing to you," he remembered quite vivdly seeing Charlie collapsed in the rubble strewn street, "but you were a true soldier back there, you did well for your first mission." Kieran beamed at Charlie as she seemed a little on edge.

Charlotte, not knowing whether to feel patronised or proud decided to go with indifference and replied with a polite smile. In all honesty she hadn’t really done anything the day before bar perhaps help a couple of people get to the subway. If anything the anxiety she was feeling right now was more down to the fact that she hadn’t been able to join everyone else in dealing some damage. Even if it was only a little, she would have liked the opportunity to do so. Regardless of that however, so far her ability had set her permanently in the side lines of action.

Sighing inwardly, she let her shoulders slump but kept the smile set on her lips. “So we have two new guys?” It was of course an obvious next question but it gave her an easy way off the subject of her and kept her brain off how weird it was to be left in the same room with Kieran after what he had done for her. Should she say thank you? Or would that just make things more awkward?

“So you met them yet?”

"Not yet, they've mostly been asleep or in the hospital being healed, but I'm sure we'll get to meet them in due time." Kieran looked her over, seeing the rapidly fading bruises and scars disappear from her porcelain like skin. "You feeling better though? You were pretty beaten up back there."

Shrugging Charlotte finally allowed a real grin. “Yeah, I’m fine. None of them are really mine. Plus they don’t hurt all that much.” She chuckled before standing awkwardly to perch on the desk. “The broken ankle isn’t healing fast enough for me though.” Adding this last bit with a begrudging tone, she regarded her leg with contempt. It was because of the injury that she hadn’t been able to swim this morning, for in fact for the rest of the week. “How about you? Got any battle scars your own to show off?”

The brief image of Kieran agreeing then taking off his shirt to show some scars, flickered briefly through her mind only to be quickly squashed, as Charlotte blushed a little at her own foolishness.

"Only a couple of bruises here and there, nothing as bad as what you had..." He slowly trailed off, seeing sparks of electricity fly outside of the window, moving closer, he could see a crowd forming around two people clashing in a battle of abilities. Offering his hand to Charlotte, "did you want to watch? See some Atlanteans in action?"

Taking his hand, Charlotte nodded, eyes now pinned to the window. She could hear infuriated screams from beyond the glass as well hurried calls echoing through the halls as students rushed to the scene. Joining the steady trickle of the others, they followed them down to the courtyard where a large group of students pooled together in a semi-circle, all eyes glued onto the scene which unfurled in front of them.
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Old August 11th, 2013 (02:25 AM).
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James Hazen and Oliver Hansen - Atlantean Royal Mansion, Boston, England



The surprised James was suddenly hit full force by Oliver and his powers, propelling him through the air and knocking him down to the grass of the courtyard. He felt like a toy that little kids would play with and send through the air when the appropriate damage was done to them. But this was real, and the impact hurt like hell, especially to a recovering James. He groaned on the ground, slowly rising to his feet, trying to ignore the pain thrust on him. He was nearly out of juice, but the slowly-gathering crowd certainly helped fuel him. That, and he seemed to love getting into fights. It certainly was a step above doing absolutely nothing only minutes before.

As he rose up, a familiar voice caught his attention from the crowd. Turning to confirm, he saw his friend Nate standing among the spectators. This instantly brought an even larger smile across James' face. "Nate!" He cried out, happy to see that the man was still apart of the Royal Family, as he hoped for. However, perhaps realizing that he may have screamed a bit too loud for the occasion, he composed himself, and spoke again. "You look damn terrible," James said to him with a grin. That was his way of saying that it was nice to see him. He turned his head back to Oliver. "Stay right there," He continued to Nate, assuring him that he could handle himself. "I'm having too much fun now to stop."

With his focus back to Oliver, James took in a deep breath. As he did so, he felt a stinging pain in his ribs, probably being broken, but tried his best to ignore it. The adrenaline certainly helped. He began to concentrate, gathering pools of his contained energy into his arms, and slowly the sparks of electricity began to form at his palms, scattering around as if to find a source to shock. With both of his hands covered in the lightning, James stepped forward, put both of his arms together, thus combining the intensity of the shockwave, and then shot it at his opponent.

Recovering himself from hitting James, Oliver growled as his opponent got up from the ground, seeminly brushing Oliver off to talk to someone in the crowd before turning his attention back to the now increasingly aggrivated Oliver. He felt the shockwave slam into him, throwing him backwards despite poaching as much energy as he could from the shot.

"Geez, you can really pack a punch," Oliver cackled, enjoying not just the fame he was getting from the rapidly growning crowd, but also for finally having an opponent that could match him on the field. Focussing on the little energy he had managed to suck up, pushing it into his ability as his bird-like aura grew brighter, his wings and beak growing more solid and the formation of talons on his fingers.

"Come at me, bro!" He screamed at James as what seemed like the entirety of the Atlantean Royal Family watching them now.

Not needed to be asked twice, James grinned at Oliver and charged forward. Being low on energy, and now seeing how many people were watching, James decided now to enact his plan. Extending his arms, he focused on the electrical sources around that people were carrying. Cell phones, cameras, anything at all that was powered by electricity within the area came into focus. And almost all at once, James visibly stole the electrical energy from these devices, the stream visibly leaving people's things and going into James' body, particularly into his arms. In an instant, the amount of force that went into James' arms looked double what he sent before. In fact, this was the most amount of energy James had contained and released in his arms since he acquired his powers.

The resulting detonation of energy that he released was so potent it not only sent his lightning attack in force, but it also pushed James back at few feet. As the energy left his body, he could feel his arms tingle, burn, and numb all at once in different areas, which was an affect he learned that happens whenever he uses too much electricity at once. Nevertheless, the 'lightning bomb' successfully released from his hands and traveled towards Oliver.

This time, Oliver was more than ready, taking the brunt of the blast as it threw him back even father than James. Using his ability as best he could, he let the energy flow though him, amping up his ability even more. Getting to his feet, he launched himself at the fallen James again, this time going in for the kill.


Before he could make it halfway, Oliver was sent flying back, what looked like a miniature tornado coming between him and his adversary. The tornado slowed spinning until it came to a stop, the elegant form of Chrysta stading ready to stop Oliver's advancement.

"What are you doing Chrysta!" He yelled at her.

"Nothing to see here folks," she turned to the bewildered crowd, waving her hands as if to disperse them before walking over to James. "Nice going, hot stuff," she smirked as she held out a hand to help him to his feet.

Oliver was about to charge again until he realised his hands, feet and abdomen were ensnared with thick, stands of hair. From behind him, Rebecca had her ability activated, her hair encircling her head like a verticle halo of crimson waves. She dragged him with her hair to the pool, tossing him in like a rag doll and watching his ability dissipate. As he came up for air, she returned her hair to it's usual shoulder length before adding, "Oliver, you seriously need to cool off."
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Old August 11th, 2013 (10:55 PM).
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James Hazen - Atlantean Royal Mansion, Boston, England



The match had come to an abrupt halt after a girl with dark hair, full lips and dark eyes managed to stop Oliver in his tracks from delivering what would have likely been the finishing blow. Quickly, she began dispersing the crowd while another girl grabbed Oliver with her hair and tossed him into the nearby water, thus officially ending the fight, and once again ending James' excitement. Perhaps he didn't realize how close he might have come to death or serious injury, but the only concern James had lying on the floor was why the fight didn't last longer. He found himself becoming a bit frustrated now by the sudden unwanted intrusion by the other two Atlanteans. So naturally, when she came over to try to help him up, he wasn't eager in accepting her help.

Pridefully, James declined the hand, and tried to lift himself up from the ground, faltering and stumbling for a brief moment, and only barely catching himself with his hand, before he finally stood straight up. He stood right in front of the woman, gazing at her and examining her form. She was cute, he supposed, though not exactly his type, and he wasn't much interesting in chatting with her, especially after intruding in on his fun, even if he was getting his a$$ kicked. He kept a sour look the entire time on his face while he gazed at the Atlantean woman, but his countenance abruptly switched when he turned his attention to Nathaniel, who stood a few paces behind her. Completely ignoring her now, James brushed past Chrysta and walked over to Nate, sporting a near-childish grin on his face.

"Where have you been? I was looking for you all morning!" He said to his friend. "I was starting to think you weren't here anymore." He turned his gaze to the right at the sound of splashing water as Oliver began his climb out of the pool. His grin seemed to widen a bit as he saw the fate of his challenger. James was in a remarkably better mood than one would expect especially after losing a fight. Perhaps Nate's presence had something to do with it. Yet even then, the reasoning behind his positive disposition was that James didn't fight to win. He fought to fight.
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Old August 12th, 2013 (05:44 PM).
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Nathaniel Calaway and James Hazen - Atlantean Royal Mansion, Boston, England



"I've been in the infirmary, James. No thanks to Oakley," Nathaniel said, whispering the last part so no one except James could hear, moving his one arm as much as he could. Nathaniel would admit that despite his injuries, the pain was minimal and moving wasn't has hard as he expected. Perhaps being an Atlantean made healing a far less painful process. At this rate, he could probably train at 100% in a matter of days. That was being optimistic. "I see you have been making friends already." Nathaniel was teasing James, seeing that despite everything that happened that James kept his belligrent charm in tact. "Mind telling me why you were fighting?"

"Oakley did that to you?" James asked incredulously. He shouldn't have been surprised. He knew she was capable of doing it, he was just surprised that she had done it. James, after all, had been knocked out the moment since they got to the helicopter. "No kidding," He murmured, examining the injury. The sheepish grin returned to James' face when the topic switched back to him. "Why?" James questioned, almost as if asking himself. He gave his next response a bit of thought. "I'm not sure," He began. "I guess because he was bothering me too much. But then again, something tells me I would have ended up fighting someone even if he didn't."

Nathaniel could only nod and sigh at James. He nodded just to confirm that Oakley had in fact nearly shattered most of Nathaniel's body. He simply chose to ignore she did it in one shot. That much would almost be embarassing. Then again, Oakley was more powerful than James and Nathaniel would probably care to admit. He sighed at how James continued to act far more...aggressive than would be beneficial to their mission at hand. The Librarian wanted them to basically "spy" on the other factions. Not tear them apart from the inside. But then Nathaniel remembered the night at the bar and neither one of them neccessarily enjoyed the Librarian. Perhaps this was James metaphorically ingoring the wishes of the man who collected them. "Do try to remember why we are here, James," Nathaniel only said in response.

"Heh..." James chuckled. "Why are we here? I'm here to get a better handle on my ability. I was getting some practice in. It didn't seem like they were interested in teaching us anytime anyway." He looked around, examining the other 'students', most of which had dispersed and gone about their day, while some gave glances to James. He then turned back to Nate. "I mean, that's why I'm here. Aren't you? You're not seriously doing what he told you to, are you?" He questioned, not needing to have to mention his name without both of them knowing what he was talking about.

"For the time being, yes," Nathaniel said without much hesitation. He had a duty, no, an obligation to help the Librarian. At least for now. He trained them. Helped them. And he did so without any second guesses. James had a point though. Nathaniel would stay and recieve more training as he knew he was in this...whatever this was...for the long haul. "Can you really trust these people so easily?" Nathaniel said, once again lowering his voice. "What makes them any different from him? We shouldn't stay here longer than we need to."

James lowered in with Nate and responded back immediately. "No, I agree. We can't." He replied, looking directly into his eyes, his own flared with the seriousness of the situation. "I'm not trusting any of these Atlantean groups. You can never know what they're really about." He looked around again, observing the atmosphere they inhabited: the mansion, the students, the scenery. "And even if they're on the level, that just confirms that this place isn't for me. Not in the long run." He turned back to Nate. "As I said before about Henry, I'm getting what I can out of them, and then bailing. Not sure when. A week, a month, who knows? But I'm not getting comfortable."

On the level... If they really were legitimate, Nathaniel would love to stay here. In what Nathaniel understood, their hearts and ideals were in the right place. Nathaniel firmly believed that if whatever "shady agendas" they were up to was nothing more than smoke and mirrors and empty theories, that he would be inclined to stay. But were they a group that he could trust? Nathaniel had a hard enough time trusting a handful of Atlanteans. Could he trust an entire family? With tradition, legacy and a possibly a chip on its shoulder? "Agreed," Nathaniel said half heartedly.
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Old August 15th, 2013 (11:32 PM).
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Agnes Johansson and Oakley North - Atlantean Unification Project HQ, Toulouse, France

Freddie stood there for a short while after Agnes left him. What was he meant to be doing up here again? He couldn't remember. Wait, oh, there was a book in his hand that stimulated his memory; he was meant to be reading. But at the mention of food, his stomach made a unhappy grumble and he too decided that perhaps he too should go have a look what the cafeteria had to offer.

Agnes took one of her quickest showers ever - her stomach more or less screamed for food now that she had realized it. Clad in an orange tunic with a brown twisted belt on her hips, black leggins underneath (it was still winter, after all) and her impressively long hair twinned into one thick braid with curls sticking out from it, she descended to the cafeteria in less than 10 minutes. Scanning the area while she grabbed a tray, some simple scones and two full cups of coffee and juice, she quickly spotted Oakley.

"Hi!" she beamed and walked up to her, only then noticing that Emil's son was also sitting at the table. He stared at her as if he had no intention of greeting her back. Agnes just sighed but smiled as she sat down next to Oakley. At least his kind of 'cold' wasn't like Delta's. Agnes imagined he just had a lot to think about, so she kind of pitied him.

It was a short elevator ride down and despite the amount of times he had ridden it, Freddie still felt queasy as it touched on the bottom floor. He wobbled out and slowly made his way to the cafeteria. Like usual, the buffet held an assortment of bacon, eggs, milk, cereal, pancakes and whatever else could be eaten at breakfast. He took a few English muffins, sausages, scones and jam and scanned the area. There were a few empty tables, but Frederick noticed the familiar wave and beaming face of Agnes, sitting with Devon and the new girl, who Freddie had not met as of yet. With a nervous sigh, he made his way over, stepping carefully so that he didn't spill his food by tripping over his clumsy feet.

"Took you some time, fancylegs!" Agnes teased with a wink. Freddie made some kind of nervous whimper as he sat down next to her. She then turned back to the first residents of their table. "How are you schettling in?" she asked Oakley while chewing on a piece of scones.

"Okay," Oakley said with a small nod, "though I've only really met Mr. Bernot, Mr. Cooper and Devon here." Her nod turned into a shake. "Everybody seems so busy. Is it always like this?"

"Not usually." This time, it was Devon to speak up. "It's only because of what happened in Paris." Freddie was a little surprised to hear Devon string so many words together.

"Ah." Oakley scooped up a bit of spaghetti, taking bites which didn't really look like she was tasting, let alone eating it. She zoned out for a second, then remmebered that she was now surrounded by new people who she had not introduced herself to. How rude of her to forget! "Oh, sorry. My name is Oakley North. What are your names?" She aimed the question towards Agnes and Freddie. Surprisingly, Freddie was first to reply.

"F-Frederick Salusbury," Freddie blurted out a little too quickly. "But everybody here c-calls me F-Freddie."

"I'm Agnes Johansson, maybe you forgot!" Agnes said with a little giggle. "Then again, we didn't really introduce ourselves, I just overheard Delta saying your name yesterday. Sorry 'bout that."

She eyed Oakley a little more closely, with interest, and also glanced over at Devon. During her whole week here, she hadn't really talked with him. She wondered what made him speak up now. Did he fancy Oakley, maybe? Oh god, that would be so cute. Managing to suppress another giggle, she talked again.

"Freddie here used to be a teacher! A really smart guy. Well, I guess he's still really smart, despite looking a bit, um, sheepish. And I used to be just an average teenager in Stockholm, Sweden. I was doing parkour though! Great fun. Haven't gotten to practice that much here, but then again, who needs fancy running and jumping on rooftops when you can fly?"

She wiggled her eyebrows a little, as if she was proud of her Atlantean power for once. "Where do you come from, Oakley? And what exactly is your ability now? I didn't really catch that."

"Well..."

"It's rude to ask about people's abilities, you know," Devon butted in, a line creasing inbetween his eyes. Concerned eyes slowly fell upon him, but he kept his sour face. Freddie raised his eyebrows slowly at the Oakley shook her head, continuing what she said before.

"No, it's okay," she waved the negativity away with her hands. "I was born in Toronto, and I've lived in London for a while but before this," she gestured to the headquarters as if it was a symbol of all the Atlantean stuff that had happened, "I lived here. Not here but in an Academy, in Toulouse. As for my ability, um..."

She raised her right arm onto the table. Thanks to the Librarian's necklace (which she had not taken off), she had been able to keep her armour at bay. With an exhale and a crease in her brow, she tried to concentrate. At first, there was nothing, and Oakley just felt herself get a hot face. Then, she increased the pace of her breaths, like she was going on a run, until slowly, like she was growing scales, metal started to grow over the skin. It stung, like splinters in her hand, until it reached just her palm. The skin around hand and just up her arm had bruised and turned black and thick, like it was heavily calloused. Her hand had also expanded as well, but she knew if she let it go to her shoulder, she wouldn't be able to eat anymore of her breakfast.

"That's... pretty cool." Devon's raised eyebrows and impressed nod made Oakley blush. She assumed, being the son of the guy who was the head of this organisation, that he had seen a fair few abiltiies in his life time.

Agnes did more than raise eyebrows. When the armor began growing, she almost jumped out of her seat, making her cups of coffee dance dangerously on the table. "Wow," she said. "Some kind of armor? You are, like, the invincible girl. That's amazing, Oakley!"

She sat down properly again with an apologizing smile to Freddie, and then shot Devon a curious look. "Why would it be rude to ask? Sorry, I still don't understand all Atlantean taboos and dos and donts. I was born human, you know?" She meant it like a joke and winked to him across the table.

"It's like a form of trust," Devon said, his eyes moving to Agnes, unblinking. "That's what my dad told me. Like telling someone something personal, or a secret. That's what it's meant to mean. But it means different things to different people."

"I r-read that in o-old Atlantis, the only people who-who knew your abilities, was f-family, l-l-lovers and your closest friends," Freddie added.

"Where'd you read that?" Devon shot back, almost accusingly. Freddie was caught a little off guard.

"I-In the library?"

"Hm."

"Wow, so there are actual texts from the time where Atlanteans lived? I mean, we're alive now of course, but I mean with their Atlantean civilization? That's so cool!" Agnes smiled widely. "I haven't even checked out the library yet. I don't usually read much, I guess."

"You d-don't r-r-read?" Freddie whispered, almost in shock, but went ignored.

She turned to Devon. "And yeah, I can understand that, I guess. Sorry. But at least that means I trust Oakley then? Or wait. Maybe it means she trusts me if she tells me. Hang on, I think I need more coffee to wrap my head around this."

She sure didn't feel like the brightest person around in early mornings. Even though it wasn't even early anymore. After emptying her second cup, she asked if any of the others wanted to join her for some gun training. It was the only part of their training here that Agnes felt she really grasped, but she didn't tell them that. Oakley agreed (having never handled a gun before) and Devon and Freddie piped up that they would come and watch (since they really didn't have anything else to do anyway) so when all had finished eating, they wandered on over to the training rooms, with Devon leading the way. The rooms were all empty, so Devon picked a room at random, being 1B.

All of the weaponry were in the cupboards at the far end and with a flick of a switch, a bunch of targets appeared on the back wall. Oakley was unsure what she was allowed to touch, so she let Agnes go first. Devon and Freddie had made themselves comfortable at the edge of the room, as far from the targets as they could safely get.

Agnes held a gun in her hands, steady with both of them. She felt the yet cold metal against her skin and just as it had done in Paris, it made her feel strangely safe. Back when she had been living with her father in a tiny town in Sweden, she wouldn't have dreamed of touching a gun. Why would people need guns really? Stupid things that could get you killed. But now it was different. In a world where people could shoot fire or ice from their fingertips, a girl with no fancy Atlantean armor or superspeed needed some kind of comfort. She needed a pistol.

Flashing Oakley a reassuring smile, she stepped up to the shooting lane. The room was silent and Agnes felt the staring looks of Devon and the others in her neck. Freddie had watched her fire before, even though he hadn't liked it much at all. She had never seen Devon in here though, but just assumed that he had, despite his age, seen gunfire before this day.

This was just training, anyways. Nothing dangerous. Even though she had been strictly told to always remember that a gun was dangerous and shouldn't be treated as a harmless toy, she didn't feel scared or overly respectful now. The thing she held in her hands was just a metal item with technology that could fling a metal bullet at high velocity against the opposite wall.

She aimed, and fired. And missed. The bullet hit just outside the outlines of a body on the target plate. Her smile fell.

"Just unlucky," she said and raised the gun once more. More focused this time. She felt the silence in the air around her, and thought about flying through the skies of Stockholm. She missed Stockholm. But she wouldn't miss this target.

The trigger was pulled, the bullet was fired. The air between the gun and the mark on the other side of the room was clear - ventilation in the training rooms was always good. No distractions, no hindrances. Just plain, free air and a straight line between Agnes and her target. She watched it happen in slow motion. Saw that the trajectory of the bullet was not completely as straight as she had wanted it to be. Her hand had moved a little just as she pulled the trigger. That wouldn't do. She wasn't going to miss this time. The bullet needed to go left. Just a little. Just a little more straight towards that mark on the target where she had intended for it to hit...

Full score. A perfect headshot. Agnes dropped her jaw but quickly closed her mouth again and lowered the gun while clearing her throat. "That's how it's done!"

She didn't feel as good as she looked though. Part of her was overjoyed that she seemed to be able to do something this well. But another part knew that out in the field, face to face with a live target, she wouldn't be able to focus this much. She might not even be able to fire. She was not like Delta.
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  #142    
Old August 16th, 2013 (03:17 PM).
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Julian Morales - The Streets of Toulouse, France

These two recruits seemed... well, happy that Julian had accompanied them, but didn't spend a lot of time talking to him. Actually, they failed to notice or acknowledge him after their initial reaction to his 'can I help you?' for a short while, but Julian didn't mind. He just followed behind them, listening to their conversation. He felt a bit rude that he was, but then again, he couldn't help that his hearing was stronger than the average Joe.

"We're not going to keep Spectacles around, are we?"

"It's best not."

"He seems like he's legally blind or something. A few twist and turns ought to lose him. If we do it quietly."

Julian gave a smile. He only assumed that meant him. True, his glasses were thick. Nobody had called him that before. Well, not within his hearing range, which had quite a radius, mind you. A crowd seemed to come within hearing distance which was a shame, as pinpointing his hearing became harder the more sounds that came into the equation. Harder, but not impossible.

The two entered the crowd, but Julian didn't bother following them. Instead, using the noise the crowd was making and using the vibrations under his feet, he could feel the backstreet that went behind the crowd and popped out the other side. Casually, he took the backstreet, listening to the shouts from a block away. They weren't particularly friendly, but Julian didn't blame them after what had happened in Paris. He had seen the hurt being taken into the wards, both Atlantean and normal people. It did make him sad; sad for Atlanteans, sad for the angry humans and sad for everyone else in the inbetween. He wished both parties would understand eachothers anguish and that this war that was forming could quickly be snuffed out.

He wished. Wars rarely ended kindly.

He felt Delta and Dom's presence again and turned down into an alley, only to have a man (Julian's heightened sense of smell practically exploded at the slightest whiff. Boy, did this man need a shower) run into him, Julian's largeness no match for this weak thing of a man, falling back as soon as he had collided.

"Are you alright, sir?" Julian asked kindly, offering a hand to the man.

"That f*cker!" Julian then recoiled his hand at the shout, and stood up straight, feeling the sudden warmth and hearing the loud and echoing footsteps of Dom running into the alley.

"What's going on here?"
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Old August 26th, 2013 (07:44 PM).
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-Dominique Bisset, Julian Morales, and Delta Mayor
Toulouse, France -

Dominique ran into the alley after the dirty conman despite his repulsiveness. The heat that came off of Dom felt like a close brother to the dry, burning rays of summer days. It may have been refreshing in cold November if the heat came from the sun instead of a Frenchman. When he entered the alley, he skidded to a halt; not because of the conman but because of an old friend.

"Spectacles!" He said under his breath like a curse. Where did the blind man come from? Especially in such a sneaky way. If they hadn't run into the filthy thief the old bat may have cut them off on the street mid-conversation. Dom would have wondered how he did it, but the hadn't-bathed-in-a-month pickpocket had been stopped, somehow, by the same old Spectacles. His skill in capture was on par with his navigation, it seemed.

"What's going on here?" Spectacles asked, as if the injustice wasn't clear.

"Personal," Dom answered. "Real personal. Step aside, Velma."

"Now, let's not be hasty." Julian stood his ground, feeling the heat obviously emitting from Dominique. The man skittered and went to make a run for it, only to be caught on the shoulder by Julian. His hand was steady. He wasn't letting anybody leave until the matter was solved. "Tell me what happened."

"He tried to sell us some cheap watches and ended up stealing mine, that's what." Spectacle's lack of a simple "ok" made Dom a little more heated. If he had to wait much more his core might start its own fiery reenactment of Paris.

“Liar! Protect me from this thug!” The man spoke quickly in his native language, French, and shuffled something from his hand to a nearby pocket before taking a step behind Julian, a safer place to be at.

Determination is what made Delta followed after Dom into the nearby alley where the man had turned to after what seemed like a goodbye. Upon entering she saw an unexpected sight, Spectacles. Their sitter was currently standing next to the man that Dom seemed to be after. His transition into rage had been a fast one, and Delta didn't even know the reason why. How Spectacles followed them all the way here was indeed a mystery, Delta assumed that it had something to do with his powers. Though why they needed a babysitter in the first place was another question.

The heat Delta felt as she walked closer to Dom was familiar; it was the same high intensity heat she felt in Paris when they came across his body. Taking a step back wasn’t an option however, even if she was in all black leather clothing. For once she kept her mouth shut, right now Delta was more eager to see if Dom came to blows with either of the men here.

“Thug? Perhaps. But liar?" Julian, in one quick movement, grabbed the man by his arm and raised it, doing his best not to hurt him in the process. His jacket slid down and the watches were revealed. Three expensive looking watches. The heavy ticking was hard to miss for someone like Julian. "I'm afraid not. Please return what you have stolen."

Caught in Julian’s sturdy grip the man struggled and after that was deemed a failure he then resorted to spatting out explicit phrases. They were directed at not only Julian but to Dom as well. Dom’s watch became present in his only moveable hand, but what he did next was simply out of revenge. With a thud the watch dropped to the floor while the man tried his best to look absent-minded as it did, but not before slamming a foot down onto it.

“How did that get under my foot?” The man’s face had a cheeky smile on it, as he was clearly enjoying himself.

“Now that was rather impolite." Julian frowned, his grip unbreakable on the man's wrist.

Rather impolite!? The scale was tipped; every straw had been dumped and those two were sipping on the last one like they were a young couple with a milkshake. Dom's anger didn't rise, it jumped--so high it was, not double, but quintuple. And jumps like that were bad.

It didn't happen slowly. It happened quickly. Black skin and tacky clothes suddenly turned orange, red. Fire. Everywhere. All over him. It didn't take a moment, not a second. A blink. He was the Titan in Paris: Pyromaniac.

"Get. Out. Of the way." The heat matched his anger. Each non-compliant moment made Dom all the more furious.

“You’re… You… Atlantean!” A long, drawn in gasp came from the man’s mouth. His body posture quickly switched to defensive, as he tried to shield his face from the violent burst of heat and flames with his arm. However his heighten curiosity wouldn’t allow for him to completely remove his eyes from the dazzling scene before him. The oranges, reds, and yellows all reflected in his eyes as he stared in shock. The amount of anger in Dominique’s voice frighten the man, never had he come across an Atlantean. Fear had firmly planted itself in the man’s mind; the thought of instant incineration was too much to bare.

He put all his strength into fighting Julian’s grip before he went to his last resort, loud cries for help. “Help! Atlantean attack! He’s going to kill me!”

“You do realize he’s going to tell this story to every newspaper that will listen to him, right?” Delta chimed in from a distance, she had thankfully taken several steps backwards once she saw what the man did to Dom’s watch. It was obviously a sentimental object, which much was clear by his reaction the first time around. The question was more so rhetorically as the answer was more than obvious. “We need to kill him, it’s our only option.”

"It is not our only option. You always have a choice, Ms. Mayor." Julian had no troubles keeping the man at bay. He was thin and weak, and would most likely hurt himself if he kept struggling. Julian meant the man no harm. "Please, calm down, sir." He said to the man in French.

"Somebody help!!" The man cried out again. Of course, nobody would hear him, because of the crowd around the bend, but he was going to break his arm at this pace. Julian felt his hands grow hot; the man was giving himself a friction burn. What a strange man. First, he mocks poor Dominique then screams for his life. France was certainly a strange place. "They're going to kill me!"

Julian sighed. Either this man would hurt himself, or the fuming Dominique would. With his free hand, Julian squeezed at the man's neck with a surgeon's precision, the man falling instantly asleep as he did. He scooped him up as he fell, bending over and picking up the stomped watch in the process, handing it back to Dominique.

"There is no need for any kind of violence. No one will trust this man's words, especially with a sleepy haze covering the truth. Not even himself. Now would you please tell me what you two are doing out here, so I can help you."

The grimy conman screamed and shouted when the fire took over Dom's body. Good, Dom thought. He deserved to be scared. Things didn't happen to people for no reason and his spiteful little ass would get his just deserts. Delta had the same idea, though her reasons were less personal than his. Dom didn't quite want to kill the man, just burn him into well-cooked dust. He definitely had the support and the reasons to go through with it. Everyone here was in agreement. Well, everyone except Spectacles. He had a knack for saying no. Dom didn't like people who insisted on disagreeing.

Spectacles, as annoying he was, revealed once again how oddly talented he was. The conman's worthless shouting was cut short by masterful slight-of-hand. He would have added it to the checklist, but his thoughts were red. Spectacles returned his watch with a few words attached. For a moment, Dom had no clue what to do. He hated it when people touched his watch--hated it. But it was being returned and his hands... Dom looked at them, but couldn't see them. Not passed the fire, anyway. He was hot, terribly hot. It was plain to see even if he couldn't feel it. Could he even...?

Dom furrowed his brow. Of course he could. He snatched the watch out of Spectacles’ hand and immediately it was engulfed. It would be fine, though. It hadn't melted before, hadn't even burned. It never did. It wouldn't now. And yet...

It wasn't cold. Not for long, anyway. It was supposed to be cold. It was always cold. What the hell was going on?

If there was something that constantly bugged Delta it was the fact that the Atlantean Unification Project knew too much about her. She had never once spoken her entire first name, yet they already knew it and it now went for her last name too. It was information she didn’t want out there, but now here it was. Apparently the higher ups thought it was necessary to brief everyone on her details. What else did they know about her? How far had they dug into her life? It unnerved her, anger soon formed and clouded her thoughts almost as if someone had waved a giant red flag in front of her face and she was now charging.

Delta’s advancement towards Julian was fast; her face had contorted until its feature displayed a full range of rage that could’ve rivaled Dom’s. She didn’t flinch when she positioned herself next to Dom, “I promise you if you ever call me that again even the vultures that call themselves the Royal Family won’t pick at your remains.” As if to emphasize her point Delta slammed her fist, which she had crystallized moments before, into the nearby wall of a building, cement pieces chipped off fell and lay at her boots. With her teeth tightly clenched she began again, “Another thing, we don’t need you. You get that, right? You’re only here because you’re some pathetic babysitter-lackey and the Unification Project thinks they must have some sort of hold over us at all times.”

“How does that feel? Knowing you have a role that makes you essentially no better than a babysitter? I mean you couldn’t be that important if you’re here with us. Tell me, is that what you signed up for? To be a grunt that watches over new recruits?” Delta crossed her arms and sneered at him, enjoying every second of her tirade. The words were crafted to hurt, to show that she meant her threat and that she didn't care about the target. She ultimately wanted him gone, be it death or out of her sight either was a perfectly acceptable outcome to Delta.

Julian sighed and looked back at her. Her words did not hurt him. He had enough abuse in his lifetime to ignore petty insults, whether they were about his skin, his clothing, his family, his sexuality or his ability. But there was something about her that worried Julian. Something that reminded him of someone.

"Have you already spoken to Imogen, then?"

Dom didn't hear the argument going on around him, his eyes were stuck on the watch he couldn't see, could no longer feel. There was nothing distinctive about it but the weight in his palm. Why the hell wasn't it cold!?

His mind ached from his efforts but no matter what the flames would not move, they would not cool, they would not keep his watch safe. Anxiety and worry climbed over his anger. The fire cooled, the metal burned.

Sweat beaded on her brow, being around Dom was bothersome but she couldn’t back away with appearing weak. Julian had successfully evaded all her questions without a single reaction. People didn’t like to admit that they were weak, Delta had a habit of pointing it out to them on a regular basis. On mention of Imogen Delta concentrated on him, why had he brought up her name? She wasn’t Imogen. Atticus had told her not to talk to Imogen but hadn’t given her a solid reason why not. Not that she would ever actually listen to anything that Atticus told her.

“Tell me, why is it that everyone seems to care if I talk to Imogen or not?” It was a demand, which Delta wanted an answer to.

She was just like Oscar. Julian shook his head slowly. Atticus must have spoken to her as well.

"Imogen is smart, and she's a good asset to the Atlantean Unification Project. But she... has done some terrible things in the past. I'm not at liberty to say what, but please be cautious around her. Now," Julian heaved the man up a little further up his shoulder, "can you please tell me where you wish to go? I can help you find whatever you need. A lot faster than walking."

"Home," Dom answered, eyes not moving from the burned and melted watch. It had not turned into a puddle, there wasn't the time for that, but its fine cut had been diminished to liquefied, sloping edges and a fused band. The fine rose gold was either black or discolored in places. The glass over the clock sloped inward now, its indent that same rainbow color found on the edge of bubbles. It ticked still, but that was a shaky plus. He wouldn't be able to wear it comfortably again. He felt obligated to preserve the useless liquid metal around it.

The fire had left all but his clothes and even those flames were small ad suffocating. His clothes were burned, but not gone. The singe and ash probably made them look better anyhow.

“I’m not Imogen.” Delta responded firmly, she wasn’t.

This was the second time someone told her to be wary of Imogen. At least this time she knew it wasn’t simply her attitude but because she had done something unspeakable. It was best to go directly to the source on this one and she would the next time they bumped into each other.

With the heat lowering Delta could think well, when she looked to the side she noticed Dom had fizzled out, no more flames. The fuel for his anger was unconscious in the hands of Spectacles, which was probably why he was no longer on fire. It was an impressive trick, here she thought he could only shoot fire out his palms. His clothes were ruined, but they hadn’t done him any favors in the first place. She heard Dom answer Spectacles and was taken back. They didn’t need him following especially if they were going to Dom’s house. Delta would never allow them into her house.

“Are you sure you want him with us, in your home? I can make certain things happen for you to go alone…” Delta hadn't bothered to whisper she wanted Spectacles to hear.

"No, I don't want him there. I want him to take us there." Dominique waved his hand dismissively. "He and his friend can leave afterwards. I can walk back." If he wanted to go back, that is. "That's if you really can get us there faster," he said to Spectacles. "Significantly faster."

"Alright." Julian nodded. He told them to wait just a second, taking the smelly man to the end of the alley, where people were in sight, and laid him down against the wall. Somebody would notice him then, and make sure he was okay. Provided he wasn't going to be as hostile as he was before. Julian returned, to Dominique and Delta, shrugging off his coat and handing it to Dom. "You might catch a cold." He said with a warm smile.

Julian then rolled his arms back, unclipped a belt attached to his back and stretched out an pair of enormous, webbed wings, similar to a bat. They were dark, matching his skin and the joints were built like his arms; strong and firm. His wingspan was probably close to five or six meters when he stretched his wings right out. He gave them both a pleasant smile.

"One of you can sit on my shoulders and I can hold the other in my hands. Don't be nervous, I've done this before." His wings folded back comfortably behind his back. "Where would you like to go?"
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Old August 31st, 2013 (04:12 PM).
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Dominique Bisset, Delta Mayor, and Julian Morales--- Toulouse, France

The ride was... Dominique didn't want to remember. Shoulders. God, what was wrong with him? Shoulders! Why did he say yes? What possessed him to stick to that god awful idea of "ladies first"? Miles in the air and all he had were shoulders and wings. The wings wouldn't have been so bad if they weren't... weren't... Dominique repressed the shudder. Maybe it was better he got the shoulders. He would have instead, like Delta, ended up hugged through the entire ride. If that were the case he would have been running into his apartment now, bypassing any reunions with his roommate, and scrubbing himself clean in the shower. Dom didn't like to be touched.

Anyhow. They had arrived. Dominique's room was located on the uppermost floors, but since the roof access wasn't ideal they ended up landing a bit away and walking the rest there. Dom was glad for that. He walked fast. He felt dirty. Still, the germs he felt crawling up his skin (which multiplied when reminded of the conman and their earlier, unwanted contact) did not distract Dom from the fact that he wasn't too keen on letting Spectacles into his home. He didn't know Spectacles and he didn't like him either. Similar feelings could be said about Delta, but she, in a way, had actually been invited.

Dom expected the interloper to be gone by the time he reached his door, but with his luck, that wish wouldn't be granted.

Pleasant was not how Delta would've described the experience she just gone through. First, she watched as Julian revealed that he had wings, except they weren't any kind of avian wings. It had been the last thing Delta had expected. She wondered if they hurt when first came in, but then found herself dismissing the thought entirely, as she realized she didn't care if Spectacles had suffered pain. Pain. Yes, that's what Delta felt when she had to press her body against his. The repetitive pain came from Delta biting down into her lip (avoiding her piercing) to refrain from vocalizing her comments when Spectacles felt he needed to make constant apologies.

Had Delta been a more open person she would've hugged the ground when they landed, but instead she followed Dom without so much as a thank you to Spectacles. Her boots stopped outside of Dom's door, she didn't go in. It wasn't her place to and for once Delta wasn't going to go into a place she hadn't been properly invited to, especially not someone's home.

"I'll wait here with Specs," Delta commented, as she picked at the loose material on gloves on her hand.

Julian nodded, unsure whether he was ignoring or embracing this new nickname, tightening the belt around his chest to pull his wings flat against his back.

"If you need anything to find anything specific, just ask and I can help." He shrugged his coat back on, the November air chilly against his bare skin. He felt worried for Dom, who had spent the entire time up in the cold air while they were flying with tattered clothes, but now they had made it to his home, perhaps he could change to give Julian peace of mind.

The way Specs seemed disparate to help further cemented her dislike from him. If she had to stand outside for twenty more seconds and look at him it would be a nightmare. As much as she tried to ignore the comment about Imogen it gnawed at Delta. Imogen was the only individual that had given her any sort of pushback, in the sense that Delta hadn't been able to easily walk over her in her six-inch boot-heels. Which had only strengthened Imogen's likability and Delta's interest in seeing what she was all about.

Delta piped up before Dom completely vanished on the way to his apartment, "Actually, I wouldn't mind seeing your place..."

Dom raised a brow at Delta who first declined and then asked to see his apartment. He shrugged and then agreed, leaving Spectacles outside to himself. The trip to his room took a ride in the elevator and one flight of stairs. The elevator overcrowded with mothers and children and people with things and Dom hated it. When they got to his room Dominique immediately checked his pockets for his keys, it took a few moments for him to remember that those, among other things, had been lost in the fires of Paris. He knocked on the door instead.

"You better answer this damn door," he muttered under his breath in French. There was a moment and then two moments, but the door was finally opened. And not just opened, opened. The door swung in like it was revealing a grand prize in a game show. But it wasn't a grand prize. It was a friend. It was Lucien. Way better than a grand prize.

There wasn't a pause, it looked like, between the seeing and the hugging. The what-the-hell-happened-to-you, ****-i-thought-you-were-dead, and the i-tried-calling-you-like-fifty-times-what-the-f*ck were not phrases left unsaid. All in French. However, the meeting was cut short when Lucien noticed Dom's clothing. Clothing which, in all the years they've known each other, Lucien did not think he would ever see Dom wearing. The phrases then turned to "What are you...?" and "I don't want to talk about it" followed by "Wait a minute.... Is that my scarf?"

Having to ignore Lucien's brazen theft, Dom entered the room with Delta behind and made a beeline for his room. That was when Lucien finally did notice Delta and asked her: "Are you with Dom?" Which, after being told Delta didn't speak French he ended up repeating the question in English.

Everything had went by fast, the stairs, the elevator, and Dom's interaction with this... roommate (who was quite unfashionable)? From the looks of it they weren't family... Delta shrugged off her questions and looked at the man who addressed her first in French then in English.

"No, I just followed him in here to rob him in broad daylight," Delta's tone dripped with sarcasm. She couldn't help but follow it up with a roll of her eyes and another comment, "What do you think?" Her tendency to let uncensored words fly out of her mouth without a care in the world was one of the top reasons she didn't have any friends. Not that she wanted or needed friends.

Lucien couldn't stop the smile or the laugh that came from him then. "I see you've gotten in touch with your feminine side, Dom!" He called back. All he got in reply was mock laughter and a command to "shut the f*ck up" which only made him laugh more. "Were you in Paris with him?" Lucien asked after he composed himself.

"You could say that," Delta studied the curious individual before her. He had his time for questions now it was time for hers, which by nature were much more invasive and less general. "How do you two know each other? And, why do you live with him?"

"We grew up together," Lucien answered without hesitation. "Neighbors. We both go to the same college, it just makes sense to room together." He shrugged, not finding anything very special about the information at all. Still, he'd asked her a question which he didn't recall getting an answer to. Dominique walked out of his room then, wearing a much more appealing and much more functional set of clothing. It was heavier than his last outfit, this one clearly designed to look good and to withstand the cold. The outfit was heavier than what would have been expected for a day like this (though it didn't take away at all from its style), but Lucien seemed unsurprised by it. "Hey," he started to Dom when he reached them. "Did you guys meet in Paris?"

"Uhhh," Dom trailed off for a moment to consider. He decided on a shrug. "Beats me. I was there and then I woke up here in Toulouse." Lucien raised a brow and gave one of those looks that said "Really?" He put the same gaze on Delta, but this time his face asked for an explanation.

"Why do you care where we met? We met. That's all there is to it," Delta's words were full of her typical attitude and malice, she was over the question. She then gave him a look that said if-you-keep-asking-me-that-question-I-will-hurt-you-badly. If this person, who was apparently Dom's childhood friend, thought that they were getting any specific details from her then he could go screw himself. Any information about Paris was best left well alone, especially her involvement in it.

It took a moment for Delta to notice Dom's new getup, which was actually something that looked good on him. At least one person had some sense in regards to clothing. Staring around the apartment, not locking on one specific area she decided to ask, "Are you going to bring clothes back the AUP? Are... you coming back?"

Dom laughed off the question. "Why would I? Are you?"

Delta shrugged, "I don't see why I wouldn't. They can help y'know..."

Truth was Delta didn't really want to return to Warszawa, there wasn't really anything or anyone there for her. She was just getting a grip on her power and that was because, as much as she hated admitting this, the Unification Project actually knew what they were doing when it came to training. There was little interest on Delta's part with the whole unite-all-Atlanteans-ever agenda that they had going on, but it didn't seem like that bad of an idea. She had doubts that she would even stick around long enough to see them do a majority of what they were going to do.

Power was everything in this new world, the more of it you had the better off you would be. She left the political nonsense to the AUP, but the Atlantean power was hers for the taking. Her biggest opponents thus far were the elemental trio and the sound duo. Delta wondered what happened to the latter, did they end up like Matthias? No matter, in due time she would surpass them all or kill them all.

"AUP?" Lucien's question reminded Dom that he was out of the loop. He explained AUP, or the Atlantean Somethingorother Thing was the place he'd arrived in after Paris. There were dorms and food yeah, but it wasn't the type of place he'd stay.

"Really? It's over there?" Lucien asked after Dom finished, amazed he'd never noticed the building before and that he couldn't remember it now. "Wait, so is she...?" Dom nodded. "And there are more?" He nodded again. "Here!? At the apartment!?" Another nod. "Well are they coming?"

"I didn't plan on it..."

"Why not!?"

"He's uh..." But as Dom trailed off he realized he didn't have much of an argument against Spectacles that would satisfy Lucien's look. A look that asked what reason could there be to not let an Atlantean into your home. Dom already knew how persistent his roommate could be. "One second," he said with a defeated sigh and left for the bedroom window. Lucien shook his head, as if Dom was helpless without him and looked back at Delta.

"So what do you do?" He asked Delta, clearly fond of questions and answered questions. From he could hear Dom call out from the window to an individual called "Spectacles". He didn't get the reference.

Lost in thought Delta almost missed Lucien's question and she wished she had. He was full of them, Delta never liked being on the receiving end of questions she preferred to be the one who controlled the conversation. She thought about outright lying, but then Lucien would just turn and ask Dom, which he was doing quite a lot of. Oh well, let him.

"Me? Well, I vaporize any annoying Frenchmen who are almost subpar with their fashion sense," Delta smirked. Evasion was the best tactic for now.

"Oooh," Lucien grinned. "Then it seems like I'm safe." He patted the blue patterned scarf which was not his appreciatively. Lucien looked over his shoulder and, seeing Dom was out of sight, he whispered. "Now Dom on the other hand..." Poor sap, his face seemed to say. "Don't tell him I said that, though."

"Tell me what?" Dom asked, arriving just in time to catch the end of Lucien's sentence.

"Excuse me, we were having a private conversation, you know?" The annoyance on Dom's face was not at all hidden, but he had known Lucien for nineteen years. He rolled his eyes and forgot about it.

"The AUP can help me how exactly?" Frankly Dom wasn't impressed by his first day with them. "Maybe I missed the tour."

"Training," Delta simply said. "Not just with your powers, but with other weaponry, computers, all sorts of valuable things." She added quickly. That wasn't going to be enough to convince him she just knew it. "Look, something big is going to happen eventually. A new race doesn't just get revealed, basically obliterate three major cities and there not be any consequences down the line. You want to be prepared for whatever comes, right? AUP can do that for you. Forget their whole unification mission, just take what you need then bail."

"It's nice to see you hold us in such high contempt." Julian's voice came from the entrance as he stepped through the open door, smiling at Delta. "The Atlantean Unification Project not only offers training, but sanctuary, knowledge and anything you need for whatever is coming. The main goal of the AUP is unite Atlanteans as a race, and to bind together and help each other from what ever the world throws our way, whether it be racism, exile or mass homicide." He held a hand out for Lucien to shake. "My name is Julian Morales. What's yours?"

"Sounds like an afterschool program," Dom commented.

"Lucien Daniau," he introduced, shaking Spectacle's hand. "A pleasure to meet you."

"And you."

"And don't mind him," Lucien continued, "he's always sour." Dominique frowned, but he wasn't going to argue. Still, there was a slight rise in temperature, in fact, that had been rises since Lucien first started conversing. Lucien himself did not notice, but with a power like Dom's, he must have been used to it.

"Actually, it doesn't sound like an afterschool program. It sounds just like the Royal Family and, frankly, I'm not interested in that." He wasn't interested in anything that had to do with the ARF. They'd done nothing but cause trouble, trouble that crossed too many boundries in one single jump. He was done with them and their stupid games and hollow apologies. Just thinking about them made him...! The temperature jumped ten degrees. Lucien noticed but he didn't give much more than a glance to acknowledge it.

"Perhaps," Julian shrugged lightly, ignoring the heat for now, "but the Royal Family have different ideas when it comes to free will. If you had been taken in by them, you would never have been allowed to make a decision if you'd like to join, let alone venture outside their grounds. Have you read the papers? Registration is mandatory, so that they can keep an eye on you, or use you to their advantage if your ability is useful enough. Which yours, I can guarantee you, is. Not everybody can spontaneously combust, and if I recall correctly..." he stroked his clean-shaven chin. "Fire manipulation was one of the original Royal family abilities, very much back in the day. You might even have descended from the Royals themselves. Who knows?"

"They track us?" It seemed to Dom that he could check off one more reason to dislike the Royal Family. He was glad he managed to put off registering. He was going to do it after he came back from Paris; maybe he had the AUP to thank. Knowing this new big of information it was reassuring to know that he and Lucien would be--

"Sh*t!" Goddammit. "Please tell me you're kidding," Lucien said with a face that gave away his mistake. Right then Dominique wanted to ring his neck. He'd thought they'd agreed to wait to register until later and he said so too. "Did you hear the Prime Minister? He had a very compelling argument!"

"Compelling my *ss." Dom really couldn't blame him, especially considering the events that had gone on not so long ago. That didn't really stop Dom from being angry with him, though most of it was directed towards the Royal Family.

"We can help you with that, you know," Julian said to Lucien, wiping his brow. It seemed in enclosed spaces, Dom's heat was easier to feel.

The heat was beginning to annoy Delta, wearing black and leather was a terrible combination around Dom. It seemed like she would be the only one to say something about it. "At least join so everyone around you doesn't constantly feel like they've walked in a sauna."

Dom raised his brow. "What do you mean sauna? I'm freezing my *ss off over here."

"You are," Lucien added in. What was that supposed to mean? "Maybe you should do that AUP thing," he continued. "Maybe you can get a handle on this whole heat business. People might get suspicious if our fire alarm keeps goin' off."

"Or you could just stay here and continue your burn out streak," Delta replied very nonchalantly. She looked down at her nails, and stifled a yawn before she continued. "Being the one who passes out in the midst of a fight must be your type of thing instead of actually winning them. I wouldn't know anything about that."

Lucien not only looked surprised but also concerned. "You passed out in the middle of a fight?"

"It doesn't matter. It's not going to happen again. That was just a fluke." He hadn't had a problem with his power since then, he was well aware of that. He just got into a fight he wasn't prepared for, that was all. Now that he was aware something might come up, he would be perfectly fine.

"How do you know?" Lucien asked him quickly. "If you're valuable or whatever and you're passing out in the middle of fights, how are you going to defend yourself?"

Dom growled. "I said I'm fine. I'm not the one who keeps falling through floors."

"That's not the point and you know it."

"Listen." Julian put a hand up to end the quarrel. "I don't mind who comes back with me, whether it be just one, all of you or none of you. You are to make your own decisions and I won't force or hold that against you. Just know that once the Royal Family knows you exist and you become either a potential help or hindrance to them, they won't stop. So you can either sit here and wait for them to take you, or come with us," he gave a nod to himself and Delta, hoping she would be the one to come back with them at least, "and we can teach you to help others, fight back and survive this war that's coming."

Dom hated to admit it, but maybe Spectacles had a point. If these Royal Family jerks could get tabs on him and maybe target him, that would be bad news if he didn't know how to fight back like he should have. Not only that, but Lucien, stupid as he was, ended up registering. He didn't think the Royal Family woud find his power particularly useful, at least not useful enough to pay attention to, but if it was true they would look for him if he became a problem, would they use Lucien? He didn't like the idea of that. Besides, the Royal Family made him think of Paris, and Paris made him think of that lightning weilding *sshole. He didn't know who he was and he didn't know if he'd ever see him again, but Dom had a bone to pick with him.

For once Delta was in full agreement with Specs and she hoped that Dom would come back with them, but did not convey this in her body language. She exactly wasn't sure why she wanted him back, as he was less of a threat if he remained untrained. Then again, if and when she fought someone she wanted them to be on the same level as her, Delta knew she didn't need the advantage.

"Alright, I'll go," Dom answered.

"Except, I'm not flying back." Delta added adamantly. There was no way she was ever getting that close to Spectacles again.

Oh yeah. Dom was instantly reminded of the more than unpleasant ride on Spectacle's shoulders. He shuddered when the memory came back to him. "I have to agree with Del."

Julian laughed. "I can arrange for a car."

"Don't worry about it," Lucien chimed in. "I've got a car parked out front."

"Yeah, we've got a car out front. But," Dom put a big grin on his face, "don't think you're left out! I've got a couple of outfits in my closet--" Lucien scoffed and muttered under his breath: A couple, "--that I'll bring over. We'll give you whatever you can carry and we'll load up the rest. You seem pretty strong." He did, after all, carry both him and Del all of the way over here. "Sounds good?"
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  #145    
Old August 31st, 2013 (09:55 PM).
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Leo Cabrillo – Atlantean Royal Mansion, Boston, England


9th November, 2012
Dinner was one of the few meals in which all of the Atlantean Royal Family members gathered in one room together. It was a leftover tradition from the old Atlantean times when dinner was considered a great festivity and entire towns ate together under the lights of the stars. Alas there were a lot less Atlanteans back then, compared with the sixty odd students the Mansion currently housed. A wide array of varying global foods lined his plate as Leo surveyed the murmuring waves of student that sat around the dining room. Given access to any food whatsoever, and their chef, Kylie, could whip up any and every meal known to mankind and more; her rather bizarre but extraordinary culinary ability. Above him, the lights shone brightly, however they did not compare to the likeness of the stars he remembered out on his Grandfathers’ farm in the rural areas of northern Portugal. He was still reeling from the death of his brother, the boy’s death weighing heavily on his heart, but he had the students before him as family now, and he was going to make sure all of them were safe and sound. His only regret not having found out about his brother’s plan sooner. The world outside was a harsh one, it was even more dangerous now with the growing outside concern of the abilities several Atlanteans possessed. While the government promised they would not interfere with the students in his care, he doubted heavily their sincerity.

Amongst the crowd, he spotted the tall American known as James Hazen; the kid had caused quite a stir in the media lately, putting the Atlantean Royal Family in a trouble spot. The American government wanted Leo to hand him over on a silver platter, but he had his own personal experiences to know that James wouldn’t get far alive. As far as Leo was concerned, James was a student here, and would receive the same treatment as everyone else, not matter what his past. Not that James would even let them take him anywhere; the man was a bomb waiting to explode. Nonetheless, Leo would do all that he could within his abilities to keep them all safe, no matter what their pasts. They were Atlanteans, they all belonged here.

Tapping his glass lightly with the back of his knife, he rose from his seat, garnering everyone’s attention, even the surprised gaze of his fellow Royal Family members, “Everyone, I hope you have enjoyed your day off following yesterday’s disaster. I just want to remind you all that, as long as this mansion stands, it remains a safe haven for any Atlantean. My colleagues and I would like to formally welcome the new students to our ranks.” Leo started a round of applause that soon spread like wild fire. When he had finished, he raised his glass before drinking deeply and sitting back down. This mansion was as much their home as it was his, and they all just needed the subtle reminder that it was.


10th November, 2:24am GMT
The overcast cloud covered the majority of the sky, leaving the fields patchy with moonlight. They provided ample cover as the special unit task force moved into position at the west side of the Atlantean property. Clad in black armour, they carried assault rifles loaded with enough tranquiliser to kill your average human, enough to knock out an Atlantean for enough hours to transport them safely. Communicating through hand signals, they soon set themselves up along the fence line, waiting for the radio-in from the other two groups.

“West Unit, this is North Unit, in position and ready on your command.”

“West Unit, this is East Unit, in position and ready on your command.”

In the distance he could vaguely see the shrouded outlines of the northern unit, the eastern unit on the other side of the mansion. Bringing the radio to his mouth, the man spoke deeply, “All units shoot to capture, take one at a time, do not initiate. I repeat, do not initiate. All go on my count.”

“One,” Behind him came the snapping of clips as everyone loaded their guns and flicked off the safety catch.

“Two,” the dark figures raised up, ten figures to a unit as they crouched, guns raised and goggles glowing green like aliens in the night.

“Three,” making very little sound, the thirty odd special unit task force soldiers moved forward, almost floating through the grass like tall, dark ghosts. They had all been informed of the schematics for the Royal Mansion, heading directly up the staircases inside the arms of the mansion, spreading between the second and third floors.

It was early in the morning, and the short brown Louisianan girl known to most as ‘Anna Louise’ returned to her room from the bathroom. She had eaten so much last night that it felt like the meal was going to burst from her stomach, making it hard for her to get to sleep. But once relieved, she felt ready to fall straight asleep, ready for class tomorrow morning. She had to rub her eyes as the green-eyed shadow seemingly detached itself from the wall. The moment she saw the nozzle of the gun poke out, she let out a shrill scream before her body convulsed, cutting the scream short. Around her, chaos erupted as students opened their doors to see what the commotion was about and muzzle flashes light up the hallway. Students fought back at the shrouded figures before being knocked out while others fled through windows and past any soldiers they could. It didn’t take long for the Royal Family members to become aware of the commotion, sprinting up the staircases as quick as they could to help out the students. Before long, a third of the students had been kidnapped and taken into the night, the Royal Family reeling from the sudden attack.

With the remaining students hiding out in the below ground recreation room, Justin and the other Royal Family members set the room up as a temporary place for students to sleep and relax before they investigated the rest of the house and sorted out this intrusion. Justin kept watch over the stair access while River made the rounds, calming the more hysterical students. Edward made his rounds with the younger students while Katerina busied herself with the older students as Leo skulked in the corner, phone pressed to his ear. This was going to be a long night.
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Old September 4th, 2013 (09:24 PM).
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Wyatt Cale – Northern Birmingham, England


November 9th, 5:13pm
From the rooftop, Wyatt could see the rather underwhelmed police force of northern Birmingham as they surrounded the bank in the building below him. They were at an impasse on the situation, yet it was one guy versus an entire division of police officers. They were weak, useless humans and would only serve to get in his way if they decided to do anything rash. Hopefully though, they would stay out of it and try to negotiate long enough for Wyatt to get in and get out with the package he had come here to collect. With bow and quiver slung over his back, he picked his way stealthily over to roof, skirting his vision over the different air vents until he came to one that would allow him passage. Taking the grating off, he launched himself into the vent feet first, sliding through in his Syndicate issued, anti-friction, Kevlar fortified clothing.

The vent-slide didn’t last long, with Wyatt coming crashing through the rooftop vent and into a room that looked like it belonged to some pencil pusher. The boots that came with the uniform lessened the shock as he hit the ground, but he still felt the electrifying feeling rush up his legs as he touched down. Drawing the compound bow from his shoulder, he notched an arrow and sunk to his knees, crouching just below eye level over top of the desks.

“Now that you’re in, the safe is on the level below, stairwell out the door and to the right.” The Directive spoke into his ear, “He has four hostages located behind the teller tills. Once you have him secured, call out and Jeremy will be there to spirit you out.”

“Sure sure, Boss,” Wyatt spoke sarcastically, he knew he had this in the bag, “just leave it to me.”

Looking at the floor between his feet, Wyatt began concentrating his vision, willing his ability to work as the floor below him and desks beside him slowly began to fade out of existence. From his vantage point he could easily see the layout of the floor below, the four hostages lying foetal beneath his feet and the well-built thief rapidly punching the large door to the vault. Moving on, Wyatt made his way down the steps, slowly as not to make too much noise before creeping into to the room just right of the thief’s position.

Pulling the bowstring back, Wyatt stood up, arching the shot, letting it fire straight into the shoulder blade of the thief. Wyatt crouched back down as the man roared, swinging his metallic fists around in rage.

Dragging an elderly bank teller to her knees, he clamped a metal hand around her throat, choking the poor lady as he squeezed tighter. “Come out, or I’ll kill them one after another!” He roared again in his northern Irish accent.

Given no choice in the matter, Wyatt stepped up and out, notching an arrow and holding it level with the man’s eye socket. “Put her down now, I only want to talk!”

“Oh, so ‘ere he is, Birgmingham’s own Dark Archer,” the thief’s smiled contorted into contempt, almost as if he was trying to bring Wyatt out of hiding. “People ‘round ‘ere are calling you a hero, but you’re nothing more than a man hiding behind a bow.” He gripped the teller’s throat tighter.

Letting the arrow go, it hit the man on the back of the hand he used to hold the teller’s throat, causing it to open and the teller and arrow to drop to the floor. Before she could move any further, a steel foot pushed her chest into the ground as Wyatt drew a new arrow. “Now without the wall between us, we can talk.”

“Aggression is not talking, y’know?” Wyatt watched as the thief’s entire body turned from his pale white complexion, to a steely grey similar to that of the bank’s vault. “What do you want with me anyway? I’m not one to be a sidekick.”

“I’m not too sure about being a sidekick, but I work for a company, the Syndicate, we know about you and your ability. So we drew you here, knew you couldn’t resist the opportunity.” Wyatt lowered the arrow, holding the bow at his side in a show of the words he spoke.

The thief’s skin returned to normal, all except his arms which retained their steely colour, “Why does this ‘Syndicate’ want me anyways?”

“All I know is, you’re important, and they want you to join us.” Wyatt didn’t even know why they recruited himself; it was an even bigger mystery than this whole Atlantean business anyway. Aside from his single conference with Mister Stagg, the only other seemingly high ranking person he dealt with was the Directive and even he didn’t seem like he knew much.

“What do I get out of it?” he asked, his voice becoming less aggressive and fuller of intrigue.

“Unlimited money, training, and the ability to influence the world. Seem good enough for you?” Wyatt smiled, exactly the same reason he had decided in the end to join them. Wyatt strung the bow over his shoulder, walking slowly forward with hand outstretched, “the name’s Wyatt, Wyatt Cale.”

A cold, steel hand gripped Wyatt’s tightly as the two shook, “Seamus Moran. How’re we gonna get out of this situation, Wyatt?”

“Jeremy?” Wyatt called into his sleeve, the young Canadian boy appearing two seconds later.
November 10th, 8:24am
Fresh from his shower following morning training, Wyatt joined the newly recruited Seamus and his other ‘workmates’ in their commonly shared room within the Syndicate Headquarters, most of which were eating breakfast at the table while Jeremy and young Fletcher sat watching cartoons on the couch. He joined the others at the table, grabbing a bowl and pouring his milk in before the cereal.

“I told you he was weird,” October called out from across the table at Seamus as she gently caressed one of Adrian’s arms.

“I’m not weird, just different,” was the entire rebuttal he could come up with.

“I won’t be agreeing with you lot ‘bout it bein weird, but I prefer my cereal with the milk last,” Seamus chuckled a bit with the others, only slightly alienating Wyatt. It hadn’t taken him long to become acquainted with the other Atlanteans in the Syndicate, and Seamus was only just beginning to enjoy his stay. “So you have four arms, yeah?” He affirmed with Adrian, “the little boy can make invisible bubbles and the other one can teleport, yeah?” He motioned to Fletcher and Jeremy respectively.

“I, can cause seismic activity,” October spoke over top, asserting her influence and power, “and wonder boy here can see in the dark,” she added in for Wyatt.

“It’s more than that…” Wyatt didn’t have time before the Directive strolled through the elevator doors, calling out his name.

“Wyatt, Jeremy, Adrian, you all need to follow me. October, take Seamus down to the lab for training after breakfast.” The Directives face was blank as always when dealing with the lot of them, voice monotone to assert his authority.

“Aye aye, Captain,” October murmured sarcastically beneath her breath followed by a half-hearted salute as she watched her boyfriend leave with the Directive. She wasn’t overtly fond of the new kid, but something about him made her want to give him a chance. Unlike Wyatt.

When the doors behind them closed, Seamus turned to October, “Oh, the things I would do to your boyfriend,” concluding with a wink. From the couch, Jeremy stifled a snort as he imagined the exact expression of surprise now showing on October’s face.
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Old September 5th, 2013 (11:40 PM).
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Charlotte Hunter - Atlantean Royal Mansion, Boston, England



Charlotte had watched the fight play out between James and Oliver with a bemused expression, feeling the crowd press in closer as the two shouted at each other and took pot shots. The fight however did not last long and was broken up quickly. The crowd dispersed in murmured mutterings of disappointment.

“I guess things don’t really change from High School.” Charlotte sighed as she eyed the other students as they trod back towards the building in small clusters. “Just have to ignore the mutant powers and it’s like being back in year 7 when the boys kicked off over a football accident or something.” She shrugged and nodded to Kieran in silent thanks for his support before she unfurled her arm from his and tried to stand. Her ankle protested in sharp pangs which shot up her calf but she tried to ignore it and smiled politely at Kieran.

“Thanks for everything Kieran. Honestly. But I have some studying I really need to catch up with. See you later?” She asked with a kind smile but she did not wait for an answer as she turned and followed the steady trickle back into the mansion.

When she arrived in her room, she remained there for most of the day, ignoring the occasional text she received by burying her phone under her pillows as she scanned through one book to the next. As she sat there though, she began to focus on the feelings developed by her injuries, particularly her ankle. She could almost feel the bone beginning to knit it’s self-back together and became increasing aware of the cuts as they slowly sealed with fresh new skin. It was both gross and fascinating though more of the latter Charlotte hoped as she closed another text book and studied her bruises. They had faded a little more, turning from a dark purple to a jade green.

Sighing, she shuffled over to her bed and collapsed there giving up on study for now. Her brain felt like mush and her eyes were blurred with strain. Enough for one day, though admittedly she had stumbled across one nifty trick in her lab books. Tomorrow she would find a willing victim to test it on. Inducing pain through the nerves by one touch. The desired effect was pain, shock and if powerful enough, unconsciousness but then again, things rarely went her way and the likelihood of the small trick back firing on her was quite high.

Grumbling, she curled into a ball carefully positioning her leg as to make sure her ankle didn’t heal in a funny angle, before closing her eyes to sleep. She was shattered and with most of her body’s energy being challenged to her injuries, little was reserved for daily activity and so she resorted to sleep.



When Charlotte awoke, it was to the sound of chaos, all of which started with one shrill scream which echoed down the hall shattering the quiet like brick through glass. Jolting up from her bed, she let out a hiss of pain as her ankle shifted suddenly. From beyond her door loud bangs sounded as doors where wrenched open and feet stumbled hurriedly through the halls, answering the scream with their own calls of horror as the scene behind her door unfolded.

Confused and tired, Charlotte quickly stood and moved over to the door with an awkward limp. Following the example of her fellow students she pulled open the door without much thought and peered out into the corridor in dumb struck shock. Students were bolting from their rooms in the gloom of the morning. The lights were still off and in the darkness, Charlotte could just about make out their fumbling forms as they ran for safety.

“What the Hel…” Charlotte began as she moved out into the corridor, not knowing the danger she was in. Following the wall, she limped towards the end of the corridor scanning the open doors for the signs of terror.

Yet each room provided nothing, no evidence for panic until she stumbled across one door near the end of the corridor.

It hung at an oddly dangerous angle on it’s hinges, clearly bent with force. Inside the small room was illuminated by the dim light of a desk lamp where Charlotte spotted a crumbled form of a girl near the foot of the bed and motionless.

Charlotte did not recognise the girl, but she looked young and on instinct Charlotte charged in, not thinking about what caused the girl’s present state of unconsciousness. Falling to her knees, Charlotte reached out to grab the girls wrist, her eyes scanning the girl’s form for any injuries which needed immediate attention, but when she found none Charlotte became confused.
It was only when she moved the girl’s hair back, that she discovered a small dart like bullet at the base of the girl’s neck. Recoiling in alarm, Charlotte gasped then instinctively activated her power and pulled the hands of the girl into her own. Tendrils of power spread down her arms in a familiar buzzing, as it sought out the drug, absorbing it quickly and returning it to her veins in a slow ebb.

As the drug left the girl and began to work on Charlotte, the world began to whirl. The girl on the other hand awoke slowly, eyes fluttering open to meet Charlotte’s own cross eyed gaze. The girl however, did not waste time and when realisation kicked in that she was free, she grabbed Charlotte’s hand and jumped up desperately tugging on her arm to make Charlotte move. Unlike the dark haired ‘nurse’, the girl knew exactly what had caused the panic.

Charlotte, feeling her arm go numb, struggled to get to her feet as the girl pulled at her limb. “What’s happe…” She began, swaying on her one good foot.

Just as she stood however, the girl in front of her let out a terrified squeal. Eyes wide and fixed behind where Charlotte stood. Before Charlie could turn however, she felt another pinch hit her back. On impact a shudder of energy coiled through her body, making all her muscles tense uncomfortably and her jaw lock.

The girl she had helped watched helplessly, no longer holding her hand as she backed out into the corridor. Before she ran for it, she almost cried “Im sorry, so sorry!” Then she was gone and Charlotte felt the ground come up to meet her head.

White cell, unknown hours later.

It was the silence which woke Charlotte from her drug induced sleep. She had never been use to the quiet, back home her parents were always talking or the TV would be blaring, so when she heard nothing she instantly knew there was something wrong.

The first time the house had been quiet is when her grandmother had passed away. She had come home from school, skipping in through the front door to the sound of nothing. When she discovered her mother and father in the living, they had said nothing. They had only looked at her and beckon to her for a hug.

Even in the ARF mansion she was accustomed to her neighbour’s music which would pulse through the walls in a gentle hum. So when she had heard nothing, her brain kicked in and memories of that evening spent in the quiet of the living room while her parents wept seeped into her dreamless sleep. Groaning, Charlie’s head lolled forward as her eyes fluttered open inspect her surrounds through heavy eye lids.

The drug had done it’s job well enough. The double dose from the bullet as well as the girl had knocked her for two and what she awoke too scared her.

At first all she saw was a white blur, like looking at a Christmas landscape 5 ft under snow through frosted glass. But as the sleep subsided the white blur began to take shape, forming a sharp cut room, completely white and bare apart from a single steel door, an old style metal chair and a machine compressing of cogs and cords.

Charlotte quickly grasped the fact that she had been strapped into the chair, her arms strapped to the arms of the chair by her forearms and wrists while her legs were propped up onto a small ledge attached to the bottom. Her ankles were bound too by the same thick leather straps, held in place by large buckles which shone beneath a blue medical gown.
What scared her the most however was not the outfit or the door. No, what scared her was what punctured her hands and feet.

Attached to a stand and hooked up to the machine by a primitive system of cords and cogs, the needles glinted menacingly. The remaining, visible part of the needles length was similar to her index finger, the first few millimetres already slicing into her palms while her fingers were kept from curling inwards for projection by a series of rings which had been welded into place.
In the polish steel of the door, Charlotte could see two more needles attached to the machine in the same way, only these ones were pointing up and biting into the soft pad of her foot.

The only colour to found in his room was the pools of blood which congregated beneath her feet. The bright red seeming alien to the white perfection of the tiled floor.

Gasping in reaction, Charlotte tugged wildly with her arms trying to break free from her constraints. But as usual her gut instinct proved anything but helpful.

As she pulled, the straps tightened on her limbs and in turn pulled on a cord which the girl had not spotted till now. Following the cord wide-eyed to the machine, Charlotte watched as the cogs facing her began to turn. The motion was slow at first, clicking into place with the other cogs but once the cogs started to spin, a gentle whirring sound began to click into the stillness. At first Charlotte did not understand, falling still in fascination with the machine but understanding came too late.
Horrified Charlotte watched as one cog locked with the next and pulled on cords attached to all four needles. Pain burned as each needle in turn bit deeper into their targets and causing more blood to ooze.

Charlotte threw back her head as her jaw locked into a silent scream. The pain surpassing her ability to speak altogether as the needle wormed their way deeper into the muscles below. It felt like hours had passed until the needles finally stopped moving. The gentle clanking of machinery slowing to silence. Charlotte remained still for a long time after that, only becoming aware of the fact that she had bitten into her lip so hard to stop herself from screaming that it was now bleeding when she looked at herself in the door. Blood shot eyes stared back at her from beneath a matted halo of dark hair. Her skin was now pale too, lips boarding on blue. But petty things like appearances were quickly forgotten.

Carefully relaxing in the chair, this time taking great care not to tweak the straps, Charlotte tried to figure out what was going on. By this point in time panic had been and gone, leaving behind a cold, sharp mentally focused on her escape. When the familiar buzz of energy began to pool out from her core, like a warm blanket seeping through her body, her power activated and surged towards the wounds. At first Charlie was relived to feel the comforting warmth, but as she felt her power reach the needle and begin to push the needle out, a cold wave of dread washed over her. Her power was treating the needle like a bullet, trying to push out the offending object before healing, but as the pressure increased to move the needle the cogs on the machine began to shift ever so slightly. Heart skipping a beat, Charlotte felt the panic return in a fresh wave and frantically she looked up at the door, a slit appearing in the steel just above her eye level. No, no please.


Ignoring her bloody lip and matted hair she stared at the door in a hard manner, pleading silently with whoever stood behind the slit. She could see the silhouette stilled as a pair of shadow cast eyes stared back, but no other movement signalled help.
Her power increased, coiling round the needle more now and heaving. The cogs shifted again, the first one now locking into place with second.

“No, please. Stop it? Please.” She spoke out loud this time, eyes flicking from the slit to the machine.

Again her power increased and with one final pulse the cogs began to click.

Frantically Charlotte struggled in the seat.

“No please! I can’t control it! Please!”

The needles bit and Charlotte screamed.

Perhaps whoever stood behind the door could not hear, though in the small remaining part of her mind Charlotte knew that whoever it was, they simply didn’t care.

This time it was hours before the whirling of machinery ceased. Opening her eyes which no longer held tears, Charlotte quietly stared down at her hands. The needles body had almost completely bore through her hands and the first signs of the tip appearing through top of foot where shown by a small bulge beneath her pale skin.

In both hands at least one metacarpal had snapped from the needles strengthen, but Charlotte had long since given up on crying or screaming. No, her focus was now completely on controlling her power. Keeping it bound in her centre. The only way to stop the machine.

There were a few moments of sickening silence. Her chair now an island of grey amongst red. The slit in the door snapped closed. Then with a soft deep a red light appeared on the machine and needles withdrew. All bar one.
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Old September 7th, 2013 (03:14 PM).
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Austin Tseng - Atlantean Royal Mansion


November 9th, 2012

It was dinner time for the Family, and one of Austin's favorite times of the day. Delicious food, and enough of it to fill his belly, lined the tables of the dining room. Today, Austin ate Mexican food, something he didn't eat a lot back home.

George was arguing with Austin's other acquaintance, Garrett, across the table.

"No way, James would've been toast. You can't beat Oliver with just lightning! He absorbs power for Christ's sake."

"No, even though Oliver takes some of the power it could still hurt him.And besides, James would have beaten him in a fist fight."

"Have you even seen Oliver? The guy's ripped!"

"He is not."

"Yes I swear! He beat Melvin in a fight last week!"

"He didn't fight Melvin, dude he wasn't even here most of the time."

"That's not what Melvin said..."

They bickered on like this for a while longer, then quieted Leo called the room to attention, “Everyone, I hope you have enjoyed your day off following yesterday’s disaster. I just want to remind you all that, as long as this mansion stands, it remains a safe haven for any Atlantean. My colleagues and I would like to formally welcome the new students to our ranks.” The dining room erupted in applause. No doubt James had made some fans with his stunt earlier.

November 10th, 2:24 A.M.


Austin woke with a start. Rubbing his eyes, he started to roll over to resume sleep, assuming he had just had a nightmare, when he heard the scream again. Doors slamming open followed, and he quickly jumped out of bed. He threw on a pair of gym shorts before opening his own door. Outside it was dark, but suddenly flashes started to illuminate the halls. Students left and right dropped to the floor.

Stunned, Austin could only watch. He only sprang back to life when the guns were pointed at him. Quickly, he slammed his door shut as bullets lodged into the wood. He turned and climbed onto his bed. He looked up, jumped, and grabbed hold of one of the ventilation panels in his ceiling. He pushed out a different panel nearby and climbed up into the shaft. He started to scale the wall and pull himself up into the horizontal part of the shaft when he heard his door being kicked down.

"Sh*t!"

Austin crawled quickly above the conjoining rooms, only stopping at a dead end.

This must be the out-most room, with a window.

He dropped onto the floor from the ceiling, and quickly opened the window. He glanced back, and seeing nobody in the room, he jumped through. He started running as soon as he hit the grass, but outside he was only greeted by more guys with guns. Nobody moved for a few seconds.

"Ah, fuc-"


In a dark cell


"Mmrmmph."

Austin lazily opened his eyes. His vision was blurry, but he could tell he was surrounded by a bunch of dark skinned, shirtless dudes...

Wait, was that Jesus? No, just another Asian kid. Hold on, these pants are magic. Or, no. Wait, hold up.

Something's not right. Why are my pants blue they were indigo earlier...Or were they green? Actually, that is Jesus. Wait, no, another Asian. But wasn't Jesus black? Why is this Jesus Asian are there more Jes....My pants are green. No they're not dude, they're f*cking black open your eyes.

Austin tried to focus on the magic Jesus in black shorts, but he couldn't pick him out. From the, uh. Asians. Why do they all look the same? Austin looked left. All the Asians focused inward to the right. Oh. Oh...

It is Jesus.

No, ****ass it's you. They're obviously clones. Austin looked at his clones.

"Looks like we're in a bucket, huh?" His clones moved their mouths but didn't talk. Rage.

"No! They cut your vocal chords!" Wide eyed, Austin started frantically searching the room. His eyes passed a darker clone.

Oh my god, they tried to burn him alive! Austin struggled to move, to run to his comrades, but it was pointless. His arms and legs were chained to a metal frame looking thing, resembling a Crucifixion Christ-like position.

"THEY GOT ME!' Austin violently shook, and his clones started writhing.

"STOP HURTING THEM!" Austin tried to move, but couldn't. Exhausted, he gave up, and drifted back to sleep.

When he woke again, his mind was clearer. His head hung low, making his chin touch his chest. He slowly pulled it up, neck aching. Immediately he noticed he was staring at himself. A mirror. No, several mirrors. As he looked about, it seemed that a system of elaborately place mirrors focused on his scattered to cell he was in. Dozens of Austins Looked back at him. Great.

"Hello?" He called out. No answer.

"Hey, my arm's stuck, can someone help me?" He said, sarcastically, "If you did that would be on-point."
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Old September 7th, 2013 (05:23 PM). Edited September 7th, 2013 by Skymin.
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Atlatean Unification Project Headquarters, Toulouse, France


Evening - November 9th, 2012
The night had been a peaceful kind of one. Members who had been absent during the morning had resurfaced for dinner, tired and very much looking forward to sleeping. It seemed that whatever the higher ups had been doing to sort out the problem in Paris, the majority of it had been settled.

The cafeteria was bustling with energy, rambitious members clinking glasses and shouting bouts of 'cheers!'. All members who had tried to sneak away had been dragged back to dinner.

"We have much to drink about." Emil stood towards the end of the evening, raising his glass for a toast. "Milestones to celebrate. Comrades to mourn. Recruits to welcome. Members to congratulate. Stories to remember." His eyes travelled all around the room, acknowledging the existence of every single member of his cause.

Atticus stood up, raising his glass. "To friends and family. New, old, lost and found."

"To good health and good fortune," Julian said, standing by his friend.

"To all ov our cherished memories! Good! Bad! Happy! Sad!" Misha boomed, toppling his chair as he stood.

"To winning this war and crushing those who threaten us," Imogen piped up, refusing to stand. She felt a few wary eyes on her and smirked.

"To learning from our mistakes." Annie, unable to stand, raised her glass high.

"To peace." Cooper stood.

"To peace!" Emil echoed. A large round of cheers erupted from the room. Dinner ended slowly after this, members leaving to drag themselves to bed.

Devon watched from the corner, his lips curling into a smile. His father seemed so happy. It had been a long time since he had seen him so geniune, and not just the kind smile he gave to his members to feed them hope.

"Are you crying?" Oakley turned to him, noticing the light reflect from the wet on his face. Devon sniffed, rubbing his face with his hand. "Are you okay?"

"Y-yeah." He swallowed his emotions back down. "I just miss what the world used to be. I miss my mum."

"Me too."

Early Morning - November 10th, 2012
"What's wrong?" Emil burst through the doors of the Big Room, tugging his sleeping robe right around his waist. Natalia Zaytsev appeared behind him almost immediately, her face serious, not showing a hint of the worry that she felt.

"Annie spotted this last night." She stode over to one of the larger monitors, thrusting a finger at the direct middle. It looked like a bird's eye view of the Royal Family Mansion. They were obviously keeping tabs on their enemies, but Emil couldn't see anything.

"What?" Emil shook his head. "What is it?"

"The cavalry. This is a recording of heavily armed forces kidnapping Atlantean children directly from the Atlantean mansion. You can't see anything because they're dressed in black, but," she flicked a switch, turning on the infrared scanners. Emil blinked and took a few steps closer. They were as bright as day now; teams of men from all sides of the Mansion were closing in, some disappearing inside the building, "they're there."

"Who is doing this?"

"We don't know," Annie said, wheeling herself over to Emil and Natalia. "Another Atlantean group? Librarian? The Government? It's not too clear yet."

"Can't be Atlanteans." Emil shook his head. "They wouldn't use guns. And the Librarian isn't known to be so obvious. Not this obvious. How long ago did this happen?"

"Maybe two, three hours ago." There was a few moments of silent. "What do we do?"

"Let them have it," Imogen almost spat. Emil turned around at the sound of her voice. She was waltzing in, a big fat smirk on her face, Cooper following soon after. "They deserve it." Emil gave her a disappointing glance, something that she was used to.

"We follow them." Cooper stopped beside Emil, staring at the image on the screen. "And we help them. A favour from the Royal Family is not something you can put a price on. And we could even convert some members while we're there."

"Are you serious?" Atticus appeared, Julian and Misha in tow. Word seemed to travel fairly fast. "You can't seriously be considering this? People could die on a mission like this!"

"Die?" Imogen pouted. "What, don't you trust us, Atticus? We won't screw up like you did with your family."

"Shut it, bitc--"

"Enough! The both of you!" Cooper stepped in, his voice enough to stop the two in their tracks. Atticus swallowed his words, keeping an ugly stare focused on Imogen. She winked back and blew him a kiss. "They won't kill us. If it's Atlanteans they want, they'll prioritise capturing. Why do you think they stormed the mansion in the first place?"

Emil sighed. He hoped for more than a full day of peace.

"We better wake the others, then."

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

The brief was short, but enough to let everybody know what was going on. There were a lot of grunts and groans; many had been up late last night drinking. Julian was doing what he could for those, mainly coffee and bacon.

"Alright," Atticus stood up, shaking his head. "Time to gear up and load up on the plane. Since we only have two, the first 50 able bodies are first. You can ask questions on the way. Let's move!" He sighed, brushing his hair with his fingers off his forehead. It was probably somewhere close to 6am right now, and he was much too tired to move, especially to help lead an assault on some facility in some place God knows where.

"Aw, Atticus, you look tired." A familiar voice made Atticus tense up. Why wouldn't she just leave him alone? Was this fun for her? He inhaled and tuned, his face souring up. Despite how beautiful Imogen was, Atticus knew how ugly she really was.

"Now now." He shook his head and looked away. "I'm busy. You're busy. You should be helping load up."

"You know I don't bother myself with that nonsense. That's for the small fry." She flicked her hair, in the annoying way that she did it. "Why are you even here, Atticus?"

"What does that mean?"

"You don't want to do this. You know this is wrong. So why don't you just opt out? You can do that you know." He looked up at her, her sickly sweet smile staring back. He frowned.

"Because I was told to. That's why."

"You're a good little soldier, is that it?" She rolled her eyes, stepping back from him. "Why do you follow orders so obiediently? After what happened to your family? After what you did to them? You make me sick, you know that?"

"Why are you saying this?" He stared at her. She wasn't always like this. When she joined, she was shy. Conservative. Unwilling. Far from confident. And now, that she could change her face, she was everything she wasn't. It was more than confidence though. Like somebody had stabbed her with a needle full of evil and it was slowly infecting her, the disease becoming stronger and taking her over. She smiled and pushed up her glasses.

"It's a wake up call. Because you obviously need one. See you around, monkey-boy." She added a wink and left him with his heavy thoughts.
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Old September 7th, 2013 (05:42 PM).
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James Hazen - Atlantean Royal Mansion, Boston, England



Besides the fight with Oliver, the rest of the day passed by without much excitement for James. He ate dinner relatively quietly, having some conversation with Nathaniel. Others tried to play nice with him, but he mostly brushed them off. This was a bit strange even to James. He thought that because they all had Atlantean abilities, they would be much pleasurable company than he was used to. What surprised him instead, was to find out how similar they were to everyone else. Most had similar types of personalities as people he has met in the past. The way they thought of things, the way they acted, the way they laughed, the way they ate. It was all so...human.

And it was strange for James to think this and know what to make of it either way. After all, he wasn't even certain if Atlanteans were alien, or deformed people, or whatever. He did believe one thing: Atlanteans were better than human. They were more. Yet despite this, he began to become slightly frustrated with how many things still remained the same. When the Atlanteans were announced, he expected a drastic change in the way things were, but that never fully came about. Instead, James witnessed as the Atlanteans tried to move with the natural order of things as humans had adapted them. In essence, they became the latest commodity in the world. The latest trend. They weren't changing the world, they were joining it.

It was one of the few reasons James enjoyed Nate's company. He always felt that Nate embraced the idea that he was more than normal people. He had already started forming his own ideas of what he wanted to do with his life. He thought on a large scale, the way any Atlantean should think. He wanted to chance things, perhaps not in the exact same way as James wanted, but he still had the ambition to move forward. That was something James respected.

Of course, James too had his own ambition. He wanted to do something too. The difference between he and Nate was that his ideas weren't fully formed yet. He wasn't certain what he wanted to do. He didn't have a grand scheme for the world. So far, he was basing his actions on his desires at the exact moment. He liked power, but that wasn't a goal. It seemed to be more of a means to achieve a goal. A goal unspecified. What did he want?

It was night, long past the time he should have been sleeping, but on that specific night, James couldn't go to sleep. By the time he finally decided to attempt to sleep, he tossed and turned in bed for what seemed like hours, but still couldn't get comfortable enough to sleep. Eventually, James gave up even trying, and sat up, moving toward his desk. He turned on the lamp, his eyes squinting as the bright bulb flashed into the room, and he made an effort to adjust to it. Pulled out a pen and a paper, and looked intensely at the blank sheet. He wasn't sure what he was doing with it out. For a moment from walking from his bed, he thought he wanted to write something, but by the time he reached the desk, he wasn't sure what to put on the paper. He tapped vigorously for a few minutes, looking around at random things in his room, hoping to get some sort of motivation to write.

Eventually, James picked up the pen, writing down whatever had come to his mind first, and of course, in his confusion, the first sentence was a simple question he wanted answered.

What do you want? He wrote, in big letters on top of the blank page. He held the pen between his fingers, looking at the words he wrote as if to find some sort of message hidden within them. After a few more moments of staring, he felt more determined to just answer the question, and solemnly wrote a response, the likes of which made him feel even worse.

Nothing.

After writing the word down, he placed down his pen and looked silently at the paper thoughtfully. Was it true that he wanted nothing? That nothing in this world excited him? That he wanted nothing from it? He already knew it wasn't true. There was certain times yesterday that made him so happy to be where he was, and to be alive. With a smirk on his face, he wrote another word down.

Everything.

It felt better to write the second word, but even after writing it, he still felt it wasn't exactly right. Maybe he did want a lot, but there was also so much about the current world he didn't like, so much that it could fill a book. He had desires. He had ambition, but he didn't want to fuel them toward that which he disdained. He wanted to guide them to that which he wanted at that current moment. The plan, simply, was to have no plan. It could be nothing, it could be everything. It was whatever he desired. It was...

Anything.

He smiled down at the paper, crossing out the two words and leaving the last. He then put down the pen and picked up the paper, and kicked back the seat to get more comfortable. With just a few words, James felt like he had gotten so much closer. Then, he suddenly snapped to, as he heard the hallways begin to echo the sounds of students screaming. James instantly shot up from his seat, folding the paper a few times and placing it into his back pocket. He walked over to the door, standing beside it as he tried to listen to what was going on. He thought he heard the sound of muffled gunfire, as well as a girl scream. The shots continued, along with loud footsteps, scrambling, and all manner of other noises he couldn't immediately identify. James debated going outside to check exactly what was happening, but he was still recovering from his injuries the previous day. He also had very little energy stored in his system to be effective enough in combat. However, in case someone was to come to him, he lifted up his arms, draining what was left of any electricity in the room, including the lights and electrical devices.

It was good timing, because not twenty seconds later, two men who looked like they were apart of some black ops division of government sprang into the room, holding weapons. James hid in his corner right behind the door. Thankfully, James never got a roommate, even though there were multiple beds in the room. The two men did a sweep, seeing that no one appeared to occupy the room (As James had little to no actual possessions that he had). After checking for a few more seconds, one of the men said, "Clear", and the two of them left the room to continue on their search. As James suspected, it appeared to be some sort of attack upon the family. James slowly edged out from his corner and peaked through the now open door. Violent exchanges were made between Atlanteans and these men in black. James hid quietly as he waited for a chance to move and for the action to head away from his area. However, as he peered through the hallway, on the exact opposite side of hallway, a young woman, maybe 15 or 16, also hid, trembling and wondering what she should do. Two met with their eyes in the darkness, and as she sobbed, she mouthed the words 'Help me' to him.

There was a pause from James. The action continued in the hallway, and slowly, it looked like it was coming in their direction. The girl frantically looked around, trying to figure out what to do. If he didn't choose to help her, it would most likely result in her death or capture, depending on what the men were after. The only problem was...James simply didn't want to. As the girl continued to cry, James had a small grin form on his face. He shook his head at the girl, who seemed to tear up even more. A few moments later, men in black caught her peeking out of her room, and shot their weapons at her, trying to restrain her.

While they were distracted with her, James quickly slipped out of the hallway and ran down the path to the other direction. Behind him, he could hear turmoil, as the two sides exchanged fighting. He turned right, running down the hallway. Along the path, James felt the air feel a bit cooler, and his breath turned cool before him. He also noticed the slight formation of frozen water at the corners of the floor. He grinned, probably thinking Nate had been through here with one of his own battles. Continuing down the path, at all times avoiding the black ops men whenever he could, James managed to reach the recreation room, where he saw plenty of Atlanteans gathering, and where he saw no signs of any of the other side. It seemed that there they would be safe. Of course, James wondered now if that was what he wanted. If he had a bit more energy, maybe he wouldn't had proceeded the way he did. But since that had come and gone, James made the best of it. He took a seat on the floor, catching his breath from the running he had done to get here. He didn't see Nate around yet, but he knew that the man wouldn't have gotten himself killed. At least, James didn't want him to be.

But what a contrasting day it had been. At times, pretty terrific. At other times, utterly boring. What prevented it from being better? He didn't get to do what he wanted. And he didn't get to do what he wanted because he didn't have the power to do it. If he had been stronger, the day may have gone exponentially better. He needed power to even get to the next step of what he wanted. But the question was: Was the Royal Family the people to give it to him?
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