Halloween Hyjinks

* Friday, October 31, 2070. The end of a long week of schoolwork, midterms, projects, and other stuff. The entire day has been filled with a subtle tenor of anticipation, of expectation, for not only comes the weekend, but comes an opportunity for parties and revels as it comes to be Halloween Night....

* People have been going about in costumes for most of the day, showing off to their friends even despite the cool of the late october air. And at the Beckman Institute, a group of Grad Students of various scientific disciplines are getting ready for their own party...

* A large stuffed Pikachu waddles up to Beckman, and mutters as it tries to open the front doors.

* A figure in a trenchcoat and violet pageboy comes up behind and peers around the Pikachu's shoulder thoughtfully.

{Pikachu} *muffle* *murf* ...stoopid hands... *muffle*

* The Pikachu appears to be having problems trying to open the door, due to its paws.

{Figure} You know, this is why they never showed Pikachu opening doors in the Pokemon series.

{Pikachu} *muffle* ..said that? *turns* *muffle* ...hey, here for the party?

* Figure grins brightly. "Yep!" {opens the door}

{Pikachu} *muffle* thanks!

{Figure} Noprob!

* The Pikachu waddles through, and heads somewhat erratically for the elevators.

* Figure wanders after, low-topped white boots clicking on the floor, whistling absently.

* The pikachu mushes a paw against the up button.

* The elevator dings, and the Pikachu manages to stuff itself into the Elevator car.

* Figure tries to squeeeeeze in after, after much sucking in of gut.

{Pikachu} *muffled* ...sorry....

* The twosome -does- manage to fit... the doors slide closed, and they ascend several floors.

* Figure yeerps, hanging on to her hair. "No prob!"

* *ding!* The elevator reaches their floor, and the Pikachu... squeezes out. *pause* Well, oky, more like -tumbles- out....

{Pikachu} *ooof* *muffled* .... helllllp....

{Figure} . o O (I may never breathe again.)

* Figure tries to help the hapless Pokemon back onto its feet.

* The Pikachu ends up horizontal on the floor, its legs and arms somewhat flailing, b t with the figure's help, it gets righted. *muffled* "...thanksagain..."

{Tina} Nooooo prob! {tries to straighten hair}

* The Pikachu waves a paw, and starts waddling its way towards the party proper, which is both now audable and reachable by signs tacked to the walls...

* Ti...er, the figure grins a bit and wanders after, trenchcoat flapping, Food on her mind.

* The Pikachu and the Mysterious Figure reach the larger room where the party's being held, various desks and chairs having been moved to make room for people to mingle. There's all types here... a man dressed like a classic mad scientist, another like a Communist Russian soldier, a woman with purple-and-black streaked hair in a slightly vampy costume and what looks like might be fangs, a woman in 18th century period gown chatting with a man in Renaissance-era clothing (and filling it -quite- well)... the faces are familiar to the Figure if she studies them long enough....

* Figure grins, looking around, her eyes warm chocolate brown instead of their usual lensed blue, before finding a coat hanger.

* There's a school-provided moveable coat rack along one wall, already holding several coats. The Pikachu goes and waddles through, going to interact with a Squirtle.

* There's a school-provided moveable coat rack along one wall, already holding several coats. The Pikachu goes and waddles through, going to interact with a Squirtle.

* Figure pauses, then shucks the coat, depositing it on the rack and leaving her....dressed as Faye Valentine. Though given Faye Valentine's usual outfit, it's not nearly enough to be well, "dressed" per se.

* And the accuracy is also diminished by the wearer being considerably shorter, curvier, and darker than Faye as well...

* Not that that matters to half the population of the party in question (that half being the male population....)

* Pikachu turns to look, wrbles, wobbles, and gets thwapped by Squirtle for his troubles.

* Tina (Yeah, yeah, it's her) grins cheerfully and zeros in on the edibles, muchly.

* There are many avaialable munchies. The woman in 18th century costume turns from where she was talking with the Rennaisance Man to wave to Tina. "Hi, Tina!"

* Renaissance Man looks and waves too.

{Tina} Aw, damn, you found me ou... {makes framing motions at the other with her hands} Who the hell is it, anyway? {waves at people}

* 18th century girl grins, and curtsies. "Why, Tina? Can you not rememeber your old schoolyard chum Zoe?" *winks, as she does a twirl with the large skirt, and it works well.*

{Tina} No! I have amnesia, especially when you're in a big-ass hugemongous skirt thingie like that! And when you have your hair styled! It looks good, though!

* Zoe blushes, and smiles. "Thank you! Spent all last night getting it together..." *grin*

{Tina} I stitched mine. My wig keeps slipping though!

{Ian} Looks just fine to me. *g*

* Tina blinks, blinks again at Ian, looks him up and down, glrks a second, and waves, visibly brightening. "Yay! Hi, Ian!"

{Ian} You like? *wg, pose*

* Zoe chuckles. "Looks good here, too... though it shows a lot, sheesh." *grin*

{Tina} Um! {pauses, momentarily locks} Yes! I do! {blinks a lot}

{Tina} Well, yeah, but it's an anime-themed costume, dang it! It was *like* this in Bebop! Plus, you know damn well I worked for this bod, Zo!

{Ian} Definitely looks good on you.

{Zoe} Well, yes, that's true... *grin* So what the hey. *smile* Anway, I was just telling Ian about the fact that our project sweeped the rest off its feet in Static Structures... if you wanter, later I could take you two over to Newmark to see it...

* Tina dimples and curtsies, skirtlessly. "The same can be said of you, sir."

{Tina} Ooo, I good wid dat.

{Ian} My thanks, milady. *bow*

* Tina blushes, attractively}

* Zoe grins, watching the two, her hair done up like that of a french aristocrat's (though by no means powdered or anything).

* Tina peers at Zoe. "What *you* lookin' at? {wink}

* Zoe hehs, and blushes, grinning wryly. "Oh, it's just that it's not every day one gets a personal Rennaisance Man to defend your honor and all..."

{Ian} *looks a bit sheepish* Sometimes destiny just calls. *shrug, wg*

* Tina coughs, blinking and flushing a bit. "This...is true."

{Zoe} Well, I'm going to go mingle, see if I can go and catch a young knight of my own (who -isn't- in my project group *eyeroll*) ... have fun, you two... *wink*

* Tina coughs, and nods wryly, flushing again. "Riiiiight...Enjoy yaself!"

{Ian} Ah. Right. *wl*

* Zoe waves, and heads to get something to munch before mingling some more.

{Tina} {q} Zo is a deeply cool person. {small grin}

{Ian} *q* She most certainly is.

{Tina} {q} Mmm-hm. Hope things go her way, 'cos she deserves it.

{Ian} *vq* Destiny is certainly watching. *nods*

{Tina} {vq} In the literal sense? {small smile, sidles a bit closer}

{Ian} *q* Well, that would certainly be nice. *also sidles a bit closer*

* [Van pauses, then nods. {q} "You'll be fine."]

[Van] [[Sorry.]]

{Tina} {q} Yep. I think Zo's got a big one ahead of her, provided nobody screws it up.

{Ian} *q* Maybe I should send email to Yves or something. *swg*

{Tina} {q} Oooo.... {pause} He got some?

{Ian} Well, I would think the Library would have a -few- computer terminals in it. *wl*

{Tina} Trueeeee.....

* Tina hmms. {q} "Sooooo."

{Ian} hmmmm?

{Tina} {q} How much personal experience do you *have* wearing that sort of getup? {wink}

{Ian} *q* Well, I didn't exist for the actual historical period. *wg* Been to a few fairs in my time, though.

{Tina} {q} Oho.... {grin} Good places to go, Renfests... So when did you well...exist then?

{Ian} *q* Late 1600s, give or take. First dirtside project was in Salem.

* Tina nods, narrowing her eyes a bit. {q} "Same Salem I'm thinking?"

{Ian} *nod, q* There were a lot of people whose Honor was at, er, stake. *wl*

* Tina nods, narrowing her eyes more, looking ill. {q} "Yep. Malphie probably was having fun." {glances around furtively}

{Ian} *q, eyes narrowing* Yes. They were operating under their own misguided code of honor. Very frustrating for Virtues.

{Tina} {q} Yep. {bites her lip}

{Tina} {q} I can't understand all of it, of course, but I think I can understand enough.

{Ian} *q* It was an interesting first assignment, I'll say that much. *wl*

{Tina} {q} Yep.

{Tina} {q} I'm....just a kid, relatively speaking. Forty, maybe. {wry grin}

{Ian} *q* Well, I'm not exactly old. *swg*

{Tina} {q, some of the light going out of her eyes} For Heaven, maybe. Hell...is another matter. And...my kind as a rule don't tend to live long.

* Tina gnaws her lip, Lilimishly.

* Ian puts a comforting/protective arm around Tina, looking at her with concern.

* Tina leans in a bit. {q} "It...tends to chew you up and spit you out. Either bigger or meaner demons than yourself, or you get ripped to shreds by conflicting Geasa... Two centuries is middle-aged for my Sisterhood."

{Ian} *vq* Sorry. Didn't mean to bring up a bad memory.

{Tina} {vq} Not bad memory per se...It's...just how things are in Hell. For years I didn't know different.

* Ian sighs a bit and gives Tina a more obvious hug.

* Tina hugs back, tightly. Mmm, warm Malakite.

{Tina} {vq} Brights don't last long either, Ian. Or didn't...there's more of us now, and a support network. Game does their best to change that though.

{Ian} *sigh, vq* There's a lot I don't know... probably can't know. *hug tighter*

{Tina} {q} S'mutual. Ain't we a pair...the Hellborn and the unFalling. {wry grin}

{Ian} *q* Not that I care too much about labels right now.

{Tina} {q} Ditto. Sod labels.

{Ian} *whispers in ear* You'll always be Tiphareth to me.

* Tina smiles. {w back} "Same for you, Ian."

* Ian hugs Tina again.

* Tina hugs back. Mmmmm, even more nice warm Malakite.

{Ian} *finally lets go after a while* Well... maybe we should get back to the party? *wl*

{Tina} {q} Sounds good to me. Many party favors to be much the thing of pillaging.

{Ian} Agreed. *g*

{Tina} Yes. Plus, Zo has to tease us more. {grin}

{Ian} Riiiiiiiight. *wl*

* Tina blushes, contently.

* Tina seeks the wild food!

* Ian is also hunting down foodage.

* The food tables are, indeed, wild. Lots of munchies, snacks, various punches, a coupls bottles of vat-0grown wine coolers, plus a bottle of Mars Red that someboyd must've paid a pretty penny to get there.

{KasumiAlike} Hello! Is there anything in particular you're looking for? *smile*

{Tina} Ooo.... {pause} Somebody's been up to xymurgy in chemistry, haven't they. Interesting little hobbits...

* KasumiAlike chuckles, and nods. "Oh yes. I heard Charles was working on a new way to keep liquids from going bad while still tasting good for those deep-space voyages."

{Tina} And hey, if he gets tanked in the process, he considers it a nice side bennie? {innocent grin}

{Ian} Whatever will they think of next? *wg*

* KasumiAlike rolls her eyes, but smiles. "Well, he just has to be careful not to do so before his TA sessions..."

{Tina} Unless it's a Monday. Then nobody else will notice because they're all hungover too!

* KasumiAlike giggles. "Too true, too true.... anyway, help yourselves..."

{Tina} Thank you!

{Ian} Thanks.

* KasumiAlike nods, and goes to admonish a Char-Aznible Alike who's had a bit too much of the 'grog and is now trying to rally the students to rebel against the proletariot.

{Tina} .....Oh boy. Let's hope he doesn't inspire any stations. {noshes on a cookie}

{Ian} *snickers a bit* Yeah, because there aren't enough wars to go around or anything. *wl*

* Eventually, the Aznable-Alike gets talked down by "Kasumi" and a man in Napoleonic garb, and he goes to have a good sit-down off to the side.

{Tina} News correspondents obviously weep.

{Ian} Tragedy.

{Tina} For them! You see any munchies you like?

* There are many munchies about. Perhaps even ones that are Honorable enough for a Malakite.

{Ian} Just a moment, let me seek out the truly Honorable among this lot. *wink, look*

{Tina} {m} Soooomebody's got a haaaaangup. {blush, wink}

{Ian} And what-ever- gave you that idea, hm? *wg*

{Tina} {m} Oh, I don't know, the black wings and the leather fetish maybe...

* Tina winks.

{Ian} *q* What can I say? I like black and I like to kill my wardrobe. *wg*

{Tina} {q} Mmm! Fresh-killed wardrobe! Don't let Jordi or Ume know about this. Oh. Forgot the oathchains.

{Ian} *q* Right, I can suffer good things to live. It's the others that ain't getting any quarter.

{Tina} {q} Mmmm....Balseraph pie.

{Ian} *q* They make great belts, too.

{Tina} {q} Whoa. Like, relic belts?

{Ian} hm... maybe. Never tried that myself.

{Tina} ...Huh. Hmm....We must ponder this.

## R-Type rolled 3d6 = 12 (5 6 1).

* No particularly honorable foodstuffs make themselves known to Ian.

{Tina} Anything good?

{Ian} *hrms, shrugs, and grabs some crackers and cheese* Well, it's all edible, certainly. *wg*

{Tina} Well, yeah. Me, I have no compunctions on eating dishonorable food, so hey! {grin, wink}

{Ian} Heh. For you, I guess I can let it slide. *wink back*

{Tina} Well, as long as I fit your bill of honor, we good. {grin}

{Ian} You certainly do. *smile*

* Tina blushes, and nodnods.

{Tina} I wonder where the attack Zoe is. {grin}

{Tina} And...whoa. Somebody came as Dr. Frank-n-Furter?

* The Attack Zoe appears to be right now chatting with the Vampiress and the man in Russian Stalinesque uniform, and a couple of others. Dr. Frank-n-Furter is chatting with a pair dressed as Rita and Runtt.

* Tina waves at the Attack Zoe and the Gothbabe!

{Tina} {m} Well, Frank looks frighteningly good in a teddy and stockings and heels for a guy. {crosslinks with Andre and chokes for a moment}

{Ian} I suppose. *glances at her at the choke*

{Tina} {m} You don't want to know.

{Ian} *q* Right.

{Tina} {q} I'll tell you later so you could get drunk. It's a truly horrible image, let me tell you.

{Ian} *q* I'll take your word for it. *wl*

{Tina} {q} One word, Ian.

{Tina} {q} Andre.

{Ian} ...... *looks vaguely ill*

* Tina nods, looking discomfited.

* Zoe glances over at the twosome, blinks, and moves over to them. "Hey there, you two.. you eat something that disagreed with you?" *she sighs*

{Tina} We just realized something Man was not meant to know. Nor Woman. The food's good!

{Ian} What she said. *g*

* Tina nodnodnods, nearly upsetting her wig.

* Zoe relaxes. "Oh, good. I was worried that Nigel was going to try some of his vat-grown meats on the group." She hehs, and then ohs. "Oh! Tina? I've got some people over here who'd like to meet Ian..." *wink*

{Tina} Hrg. No. Bad. Wrong. Not to be the thing of eating. And hi!

{Zoe!} Hi! *grin*

{Tina} Hi!

* Zoe chuckles, and takes Ian by the Arm, tuggign him in the direction of the group, using him as a Tina-lure.

{Ian} I seem to be popular around here. *allows himself to be led, glancing wryly back at Tina*

{Tina} Well, you *do* look good in that getup. {wink}

* Tina is lured, happily!

{Tina} Aside from that, you're cool to hang around with, speaking as someone who's had personal experience with such...

* Ian flushes a little bit at Tina, but keeps smiling.

* Tina grins.

* Zoe chuckles. "Oh, indeed... hey, guys! I brought Tina's boygriend!"

* Tina fights a faceplant, going Pink. {m} "...boyfriend?"

* Ian also fights a faceplant, looking wry.

* Tina looks at Ian, sheepishly.

* There's several nods and appreciative glances from those who swing that way in Zoe's group, including the purple-black-haired vampiress. The Stalin-clone meanwhile regards Ian with disaprooval, though you can't tell what with the pop-bottle glasses he wears.

* Tina waves at everybody, as it's the thing to do in cases like these, though doesn't know why with Stalin's disapproval.

* Ian nods hello to all, also noting the disapproval of the Stalin-alike, although he doesn't show any outward reaction.

* Actually, though, the fact that Stalin's also got a beard, and is holding a dog-eared "World Conquest for Dummies" book might lend clue to Tina that this is more standard behavior for the StalinClone...

{Tina} Hi, Pitor!

* Vampiress smiles, and saunters up to Ian's side. "Well, hello there, young man... so what brings you here to brave the mysteries of the night?" She winks.

* The StalinClone, apparently named Pitor, snorts slightly. "Da youself, Tina. Who is dis?" He speaks with an obviously faked russian accent.

{Tina} This is Ian, Tovarisch!

{Pitor} Ah. And vhat ar you doingk here tonight, Ian? Do you be tinking you are honhorable enuff for Tina's hand?

* Tina wobbles in a proto-faceplant.

{Ian} *looking vaguely flustered at the vampiress* Oh, the voices in my head told me to go look for dark spirits to associate with. *reddening a bit at Pitor's remark* ...well... I'd like to think I'm an honorable-enough person, certainly. *wl*

* Tina makes strange noises.

* Ian glances over at Tina.

* Tina seems caught between several conflicting reactions, judging by the smirk on her face and the repressed giggles.

* Ian arches an eyebrow at Tina, giving a classic Chuck Jones Sidelong Glance to the rest.

* Tina fights down things with considerable effort.

{Tina} The voices in my head just tell me to eat things and scratch cats!

{Vampiress} Oh, goodness, then you've -certainly- come to the right place... *wink* after all, this is a world of Darnkess, you know. Secrets hiding in all the corners where the light dares not go, the machinations of the Camarillia and the Technocracy, the fight between the Gaia and the Wyrm...

* Pitor snorts. "Vould you be be willingk to duel for her with NerfPistols at dawn?"

{Tina} There's definitely secrets in my fridge where the light doesn't want to go, Gwynn!

{Vampiress} Awwwwww, you guessed. *she drops the vamping*

* Zoe snickers.

{Ian} P: *cough* I'll... consider it.

* Tina looks innocent. "What, that the light's terrified of my fridge?"

{Gwynn} No, who I was! *cute pout* *wink*

{Tina} Well, the fangs gave it away! {grin} Well, that and other stuff.

* Pitor nods. "Werry well. My card, comrade Ian."

* Pitor hands Ian a business card, lsiting his name, Gradstudent of Engineering status, and "Wouldbe World-Conqueror for Hire."

* Ian accepts the card, trying not to snicker... much.

* Pitor just arches an eyebrow, turns on his heel, and heads food-table-ward. Meanwhile, Zoe just rolls her eyes.

{Zoe} Honestly, he needs help. *wry look*

* Pitor annexes part of the food table for Mother Russia.

{Zoe} .... lots of help.

{Ian} I wonder if I'm honor-bound to duel the man now? *swg*

{Gwynn} T: What "other stuff"? *innocent look*

{Zoe} If you do, be careful... last time somebody took him up with it, he brought a twelve-bore repeating nerfdart cannon to the duel on the quad. *smile*

{Zoe} He built it himself.

{Ian} ...ouch. *wl*

{Tina} Um...the Carmarilla and stuff!

{Tina} Um. I like to know what he's been sniffing. And how he's stayed in school this long.

{Gwynn} Oh, right. *she hehs* You want to hang in on one of my gaming sessions sometime, Tina? I've managed to find some new old RPG manuals, print edition, from a used bookstore....

{Zoe} I think industrial solvents, and extremly -good- Engineering grades and drive, Tina.

{Tina} Well, yes, he wants to conquer the world, you know.

{Tina} Depends on stuff, Gwynn. I'm usually stuck nights watching the bratlings upload porn in the computer labs.

* Gwynn awws. "Awww. Now you know why I never decided to do the Lab Techie thing. But I'll leave you a msg the next time I get the gaming gang together."

{Tina} Right!

{Gwynn} Most excellent. *she smiles* I'll webtrawl some more to try and get some more stuff.... last time I did, I got "Devilbunnies: The Fluffing". -Really- silly, but cool.

{Tina} Er. Aie. Right! {darts a "help!" glance at Ian}

{Gwynn} What? What? Wouldn't -you- want to lead the hidden war against the armies of kyOOte?

{Ian} . o O (...'Devilbunnies'?)

* Zoe looks like she's resisting the urge to facepalm.

* Ian doesn't resist that urge.

{Zoe} Gwynn? Don't force me to use the Godslayer of Hitpoints on you.

{Gwynn} Awwww.

{Zoe} So! Anyway! Ian! What do you think of our merry little band of weirdoes? *grin*

{Gwynn} Hey! Just for that, I'm gonna use my Auspex on you...

{Tina} {whimperwhimper} . o O (I have seen the armies of the kyOOte. I have *been* in the armies of the kyOOte. I no need anymore kyOOte.)

{Zoe} You don't have an Auspex, Gwynn.

{Gwynn} Oh. Right. I forgot. Ooops. Sorry!

* Tina hums absently, which might make a certain broken sense to Ian. {pig-celestial} "Reality unhinged, yes?"

{Ian} Z: Well... quite the crowd, certainly. Reminds me of some people I used to know. *swl*

{Tina} Oho? {perks up}

{Zoe} Oh? You mean, there's people as weird as us in this world? Wonders will never cease.

{Ian} They're out there, if you know where to look. Usually on college campuses. *wl*

{Gwynn} It's a plot, I tell you. *grin* *wink* Illuminati, certainly. *she doesn't sound like she's serious about that, though*

{Tina} They breed there.

{Ian} G: I wouldn't be surprised. *wg; he also absently resonates*

## MServ rolled 3d6 = 9 (3 3 3).

* Tina doesn't resonate. For once. It's rude. {pause} Never mind some of her resonations of Ian have given her food for thought...

* To Ian's practiced eyes, the three most noble things that Gwynn has done in the past year, to her standards, was to spend extra time helping undergrad compsci students with their projects when she didn't have to, arranging a big gaming party as stress releif for those who were interested of her own volition, and letting several kids who were also interested in gaming buy the rare RPG books she had an eye on.

* Ian doesn't react outwardly to any of this, pleasing observations though they are.

* Gwynn nods, hehing. "Eh, I'd be more interested in exploring Wharehouse 23 than worrying about the Illuminati, anyway. Who -knows- what you could find in there?"

{Ian} I'm not sure if I -want- to know what's in there. Even if they cleared me for it. *wg*

{Tina} {m} I'm lost.

{Gwynn} I'll lend you the sourcebook, Tina. You can read it during lab. *grin*

* Tina tries not to think about her former *cough* stuff of reading while in Vapula's service. "I have hooomework to doo..."

{Gwynn} Do it while you're compiling! That's what I do. *grin*

* Zoe blinks, looking over to one side. "Oh, whups, boys and girls, I think they're changing the music for the next rounds..."

{Ian} Certainly beats sitting around watching a progress bar. *wg*

{Tina} I don't know, I have very weird ideas of entertainment.

* The DJ over in the corner, a big black man clad in sweatpants and muscle top who looks like he could take on an armored regiment, grinning, grins as he flips another floptical into the jukebox system. "HEYAS, FOLKS! Heyyyyyeee, here's yet another favorite blast from the past that I'm sure you'll love to jam to -- THE SEATBELTS!"

* The jukebox whirrs, and a crashing trumpet/drum intro leads into a quick guitar measure moving to soemthing sounding jazzy/sambaish/bebopish, and immenintly toe-tapping and dancible... "I think it's time we blow this scene get everybody and their stuff together okay let's three two one let's jam..."

* Ian glances at Tina and grins, recognizing the tune.

{Tina} Oooo... {grins back}

{Ian} Should we jam? *wg*

* Tina curtsies. "I would be delighted, good sir." {wink}

* Ian winks back, offering a hand.

* Tina takes it, blushing a bit.

* The Seatbelts are a very jazzy, soulful, sambaish, swing-style and altogether Bebopy band (don't ask how they manage this, they just -do-, and it WORKS), and the DJ plays the first track several times before letting the recording go on to other of their works, equally good.

* Ian looks for a decent jam space, already getting into the rhythm of the tune.

* Tina is finding one even as he does.

* There's more than a few, even as other are starting to dance. Off on the sidelines, Zoe and Gwynn nod to themselves in satisfaction, before going to partner off with two other young swains.

* Tina grins and swings into dance.

* Ian swings with, showing impressive agility.

* The party's definitely hopping. Even with the timeliness of the pieces being played, it's a party band that transcends time period or location. Even Pikachu and Squirtle attempt to rhumba along, though most people are giving the dancing duo in the center a wide, respectiful and amaring berth.

* Ian isn't paying much attention to anything except the rhythm of the music and the vision of loveliness dancing with him.

* Tina is a good dancer, enjoys it herself, and very obviously enjoys falling into dance with him, her eyes sparkling.

* The music, and the dance, goes on for quite a long time, the pulse of the music pounding and moving them along, the group having a quite a good time.

* Ian doesn't really notice the passage of time, truth be told.

* Time? We don't need no steenkin' time!

* Tina seems to be enjoying the heck out of things, truth be told, herself. And seems to enjoy being with her dance partner even more.

* Meanwhile, Zoe dances with a guy dressed like Ryu, and Gywnn dances with a guy dressed like Ken.

* The DJ watches the ebb and flow of things with satisfaction, the dancers as they move across the floor, including the partnering-up... he grins (in fact, he doesn't seem to have -stopped- grinning), and inserts another floptical for the next track...

* Tina enjoys the irony when not complimenting Ian in their own dance.

* Ian is mostly focused on Tina. Big surprise.

* The track ends, and the next begins to play.... Queen's "One Year of Love." Freddy Mercury never sounded better.

* Tina stops dancing, listens, blinks, and seems to blush in the dim light.

* Ian looks wry for a minute, then shrugs, and begins to move with the music again.

* Several of the dancers slow, shifting to the change of tempo, starting to slow-dance...

* Tina blushes and moves a bit closer, looking kind of sheepish. {q} "So, may I have this dance?"

{Ian} *q* I would be deeply honored, fair lady.

{Tina} {q} Thank you. {smiles, taking his hands}

* Ian accepts Tina's hands, draws her closer, and begins to slow-dance.

* Tina smiles, going happily.

* The rest of the folks continue in their own circles, dancing to the music. Several are leaning heads against shoulders, close.

* This, of course, probably starts at least one if not both of our angelic pair thiiiiinkiiiing....

* Ian is indeed thinking, and does lean in a little closer...

* Tina is thinking too, and is making similar manuvers.

* The music, and the dance, continues... one couple has moved onto the kissing stage, stealing a quick peck from one another.

* Tina hms and opts for slooowly navagating her head toward the shoulder of the nice Virtue...

* Ian draws Tina closer, and as her head leans on his shoulder he runs a hand gently through her hair as they continue slow-dancing.

* Tina smiles, holding him close and mmming quietly and contently, a happy little smile on her face.

* Ian continues stroking her hair, smiling.

{Tina} {q} Would you mind terribly if I told you I was enjoying this a great deal? {smile}

{Ian} *q* I wouldn't mind at all. *smile, quick hug*

* Tina holds him, more tightly. {q} "Oh, good...you?" {smile}

{Ian} *q* Am I enjoying this? Oh yes. Very much. *smile*

{Tina} {q} Goooood. {smile} You need to enjoy things a bit. {hug}

{Ian} *q* I am enjoying things a bit. *lightly kisses her forehead*

* Tina flushes quite a lot more. {q} "Pity. Must upgrade that to more than "a bit."" {slight wink}

{Ian} Riiiiight. *wl, hug again*

* Tina pulls back, brown eyes shining, and considers him a moment, thoughtfully.

* Ian looks right back into her eyes, not hiding anything.

* Tina looks sheepish, resonating a bit, even as she pulls a fraction of an inch closer.

## Tina rolled 3d6 = 14 (4 4 6).

* Behind the Virtue's eyes can be seen an unconditional love for the beautiful Tiphareth, no matter her form, and the Need to express that love in whatever way she desires.

* Tina stares, frozen for a tiny little moment.

* Ian doesn't break eye contact.

* Tina stares back at him. {vvvq} "I..."

* Ian can tell what she saw, and just nods a little bit, still not breaking eye contact.

{Tina} {vvq} Why, Ian?

{Ian} *vvq* ...because it's what I feel.

{Tina} {vvq} You...we...barely know each other. {hugs closer, despite}

{Ian} *vvq, hug tighter* I know... but I know what I'm feeling.

* Tina nods, mutely, biting her lower lip...then seems to decide.

* Tina tentatively leans in...

* Ian leans in a bit too...

* Tina completes the rest of the distance, her lips brushing his, gently.

* Ian offers a very light kiss back.

* Tina draws back, cheeks glowing and internally trying not to pass out. Externally she's smiling a bit.

{Tina} {q} Take two? {little grin}

* Ian nods, also coloring a bit, lightly brushing her cheek with his hand.

* Tina looks into his eyes, nods, and moves in again. This time for a bit longer.

* Ian responds in kind, kissing her more fully, holding her close.

* Tina isn't caring much about the peanut gallery, if there is at the moment, responding with no small amount of expertise.

* Ian doesn't really care either, enjoying the expertise and responding with skill of his own.

* There doesn't appear to be much of a peanut gallery for the moment, most people are in their own little worlds.

{Tina} . o O (I think I'm going to pass out. {pause} Very happily.)

* Tina draws back, blushing more.

* Ian keeps his eyes on Tina, blushing a bit, and smiling a bit.

{Tina} {q} I'd say something, but it all seems so tacky at the moment...

{Ian} *q* Yeah... me too... *swg*

* Tina nods, holding him.

* And to spare them the trouble of having to think of something to say, we Fork.

{Tina} . o O (Music? Izzat what I hear? Huh. Not important. Hmmm...)

{Ian} *vq* Words would just get in the way anyhow. *gentle hug*

{Tina} {vq} Would in this case.... {small smile} {hugs back}

{Ian} *vq* Guess we'll just have to Sing about it then. *swl*

{Tina} {vq} Hmmm...that works. {smiles}

{Tina} {vq} Hm. Music's ending. I think?

* Tina winks.

{Ian} *vq* Sounds like it. Guess we'll have to make our own later. *wink back*

* Yes, indeed, the music is ending, as the DJ's giving his speakers a break...

* Tina flushes. {vq} "We...shall look into that, yes. " {grin}

* Tina blushes quite a great deal more as she obviously ponders the implications.

* Ian reddens a bit too as, well, he can't help but ponder implications too.

* Tina clears her throat, sheepishly, nodding reflexively. {mumbled} "We're really sad, aren't we."

{Ian} *q* We're... unique, certainly. *wl, hug again*

{Tina} {q} Mm-hm. {pause, hugs} I make a lousy Lilim. {blush}

{Ian} *q* But you make a wonderful Bright.

{Tina} {q} Still a Lilim though. {blushes, however, holding him}

* The group seems to have broken up at this time, forming into little groups and whatnots, as some folks take a bathroom break, while others head for the replenished food tables. The DJ's put in something quieter, mellow, and vaguely Celtic.

{Ian} *q* But no Tempter. *pauses, listens*

* Tina cocks her head, listening as well. {q} "Depends on how you interp that. {pause} Like Gifting better though."

{Ian} *nods, vq* Suits you. *faint blush*

* IT's soft, and soothing, and encouraging of quiet mingling and private conversations. The clock on the wall, it should be noted, reads 11 pm.

{Tina} {vq} Thank you. {smile}

* Ian hugs her again, noting the mood, and the time.

{Ian} So... what now?

{Tina} {mutters} I have to go do lab duty in an hour or two. {wry smile}

* Tina pats a pagerphone on her hip though, around Ian's embrace. "Though it's almost the first and nobody's tried anything cute tonight, so..."

* At that moment, predictably, the fire alarm goes off.

* Tina facepalms.

{Ian} Mm. *nod, wl* Still, you n-- *promptly goes alert, looking around*

{Tina} {shouted} Oh, *THANKS*, heaps, I *really* needed that! {facepalms, then goes on alert herself}

* There are groans from the various people as conversations get interrupted, and the DJ stops the music. He announces: "All right, folks, nobody panic, probably a false alarm, please exit the building in an orderly fasion..." He then shuts down his equipment.

{Ian} *loud* Of -course-!

{Tina} {loud} Want to kick their ass?

* The folks are already heading for the exits in a generally orderly fasion. Zoe waves over to Tina. "Meet Gwynn and I by the Quad!"

{Tina} {shouted} Gotcha!

{Ian} T: Sure, if they deserve it! *does the thing of orderly movement, but remains on alert*

{Tina} Right! {goes with, touching his arm and looking around as they file on out}

* More folks are evacuating... fortuantely, since it was late at night, there wasn't that many people -in- Beckman, just the partiers and a few other folks who were working late on a friday night, plus those techheads who never leave their labs unless dragged...

* Nothing seems to be off or odd as they exit Beckman...

* Ian notes this but remains alert, still looking for things not-wholly-right.

* The night air is clear as Tina and Ian exit out the south side of Beckman, the walkway lights bright, and various of the partiers meeting in a small group on the grass. Though...

* Tina looks wry as she exits with Ian, out the southerly end.... Ian can feel in the Symphony the very distinctive thrum of a Tether before he even sees down toward the center of the Engineering Quad.

{Ian} ...hrm? *looks in that direction*

* ...Why is it the Microelectronics Building, the Newmark building, and the CSRL building have their fire alarms going as well? People are exiting from them as well in a relatively orderly fasion, but still...

{Tina} ...Um. Something's weird, Ian.

{Ian} Something is definitely weird. I think we need to get a better look at the center of the Quad.

* Zoe waves to Ian and Tina, over by their little group. Several campus police officers are going aroudn and checking up on the little groups, making sure that nothing was wrong when people exited.

* There are gently curving, mounded areas of turf...and towards the center, a low-walled area of brick, and a forty-foot spire of granite, with three low domes of fountains in a line between them and the spire...a backsite of a hollow globe on a pedestal, in front of a fountain that flows in the direction of the spire...

* And the thrum of the Tether is concentrated there.

{Tina} Right. This is too coincidental. And that's Boss's Tether.

* Tina waves back at Zoe, looking preoccupied.

* In the background, conversation can be faintly heard. "...no, I -don't- have an idea what's going on..." "...some kind of prank, perhaps?" "...knew that we couldn't go a halloween without someone pulling something..." "...find them, and put them up for academic review..."

* Zoe heads over, Gwynn trailing behind her. "Shoulda figured it was too good to last, Tina." *wry sigh*

{Tina} Of couuuurse. {rolls eyes, still looking rather on edge} You okay?

* Ian continues looking preoccupied and in CorpSec Mode for all appearances.

* Zoe nods. "Yeah. It's cool, but my costume's insulated. Gwynn here's the one who's gonna freeze her tush off..."

* Tina looks down at her own, such as it is. "No comment. Brrr." {sheepish grin}

## Tina rolled 3d6 = 13 (6 4 3).

* Gwynn hmphs.

* Tina's pagerphone rings.

* Tina blinks, grabbing for it.

{Tina} Hello?

{Ian} . o O (grrr... what in Heaven's name is -wrong- here?)

* Tina pats the fulminating Malakite's arm, absently, listening.

* A genderless, electronic voice comes in....

* Ian glances over at Tina.

{Voice} {q} Tips? It's Shosh. Something's funky around here. Disturbance in area of DCl--somebody broke something, not large. Got no other info at the moment.

* Tina blinks. "Shosh?"

{Voice} Mm-hm. To quote every Star Wars movie in existence, I got a bad feeling about this. Sending Paul over your way ASAP. Take care.

* Tina blinks, and grins feebly through her shock. "I'll be. I'm being guarded by {cough} virtuous types over here."

{Tina} [Voice} {pause} Ooookay?

{Voice} That's good at least... {pause} {muttered} Gotta hang up, I have to get this bit of me on the case too. See you in a bit.

* Zoe blinks at Tina, curiously, as she talks, not hearing the voice on the other end of the line.

{Tina} Right. Take care, Shosh.

* Tina hangs up. "Er, that was just somebody in security, Zo." {wry look} "Something's going on and they're trying to figure out what." {gives Ian a quick Glance}

* Zoe oohs, and nods. "Right... well, maybe you can ask those guards who're coming this way? They might have answers..."

{Tina} I sure hope so, Zo. Given I'm responsible for overseeing part of this.

* Indeed, a pair of campus security types are heading their way... one a man in his 60's, decently built, flanked by a woman who's hispanic and in her early 30's.

* Tina blinks, and waves at the two, eyes lighting up in some relief at the older man.

{Tina} Officer Mansfield! Hey, over here!

{Ian} *notes the Glance and nods at Tina, then directs his attention towards the guards Tina obviously knows*

* The campus policeman nods to those there as he and his companion arrive, and tips his hat at Tina. "Evening, Tina, Gwynn, Zoe... sir..." He notes all four there, his eyes lingering longer at Ian's presence. "Take it you four got booted out too when the alarms went off?"

* Tina hums softly. {pig-celestial} "Tether-Hive call. Sent Soldier."

{Tina} Ohhh yeah. And how. I smell something steeenky. And Officer, this is Ian Zbysko. Ian, Campus Security Officer Paul Mansfield, hope you like each other, we don't have much time to break the ice!

{Ian} Right. *wry chuckle* I'm CorpSec most of the time; need any extra hands?

* Mansfield raises an eyebrow, considering the twosome, while his asisstant is giving him a long look. "We just might, at that... Rebecca, you take these two ladies statements, I'm going to need to take Miss Manoa-Perez and her companion with me... she's got some of the late-night accesses to the DCL that I don't."

* Rebecca looks at Mansfield and Ian and Tina, dubiously. "This is -highly- irregular, sir..."

{Tina} {wryly} This is a really highly irregular situation. But lo, I have the power of Root Access.

{Mansfield} Look, Miss Manoa-Perez is right, we still need to sweep the buildings, and she's usually the one on-duty there. If there's anything odd, she'll spot it. If it's a prank, we'll be all right, and if not, we -will- call for backup, SOP, all right?

* Rebecca nods, slowly. "Oh... kay." She sighs. "Right. Okay, I'll stay out here for the moment, but keep in touch, okay? You're not getting any younger."

* Mansfield looks wry. "Don't I know it. But I'll be careful. Ian, Tina, you're with me."

* Zoe and Gwynn watch this with something akin to confusion,b ut with also the trust that the nice campus police officers have a clue...

{Ian} *all security officer now* Right.

{Tina} Right. {grins sheepishly at Zoe and Gwynn} See you guys later, hope we can clear this mess up.

{Zoe} Um... right. *wry look* You -will- call us once it's over, right?

{Tina} Hoooo yeah. I will. I *don't* want you guys to worry.

{Gwynn} We won't... after all, you're the queen of the labs, and all. *grin*

{Tina} Lo, I am verily a goddess! {wink} See you guys soon.

* Zoe nods, and smiles wryly, waving as Paul starts to lead them in the direction of the DCL, and Rebecca gets out a noterecorder to take Zoe and Gwynn's statements.

{Zoe} Take care! Give whoever it is Hell!

* Tina grins, narrowly. "We will."

* Tina waves and follows the happy fun Paul and happy fun Malakite.

{Ian} *hehs a bit* Right. *follows Paul's lead*

* Paul nods, leading the twosome along to the southeast, between Newmark and the Microelectronics building. Once theyre out of earshot and the sound of the alarms aren't -quite- so blatant, he says almost casually, "So, you going to introduce me to your friend for real, Tina?"

* Tina snrks wryly, nodding. "Sure t'ing, Paul. Paul, this is Ian, Virtue of Lightning. I'd ask how you know but hey."

{Tina} And Ian, this is Paul, Soldier of Lightning. I take Shoshemai twigged ya in?

{Ian} Nice to meet you for real, Paul. *wl*

* Paul raises his bushy brown eyebrows. "-Well-. A Malakite. Haven't seen one of you blackwinged types 'round here for a long time. Pleased to meet you, thought. And yes, Tina... I was getting ready to enjoy my evening coffee when he called, and mentioned the disturbance." *rolls eyes*

{Tina} 'E's passin' through. And yeah, I know how that is. He give you any specifics? He seemed busy.

{Paul} Nothing more than that.. I think he's sending Forces of his into the other buildings closer to the Quad, to check the security systems in them... and probably prepping the Tether's defenses. That was a -close- disturbance, from what he said, and small... could be nothing... but you, and Ian, I suppose, are accounted for, celestially, right around here.

{Tina} Uh huh. So something is steenky. I no like the fact that every building around the Quad is coincidentally blaring all at the same time.

{Ian} This close to the Tether, it would be bad if we didn't check. *wl*

{Tina} Oh yes. Mondo bad.

{Ian} Yeah, the alarms can't be coincidental as far as I'm concerned.

* Paul nods. "The rest of the officers are also sweeping the buildings, but so far..." He taps an earbud tucked in his ear, "haven't reported anything out of the ordinary. Once they do that, they'll be checking the security camera logs for the fire alarms themselves."

{Tina} Right. I've got some access to the DCL and ACT labs....should we check there? I'm a bit suspicious after the recent hack that somebody's having fun there again.

* The trio has reached the Digital Computing Lab... a 3-story building past Newmark. Some of the lights are on, some of the lights are off, and there's the occasional small group of people waiting to go back in, or drifting off for the night. "That was my thinking, too. Fortunately, we've got cameras monitoring that, too. We'll check the security office for the building, first."

* Tina seems to have completely dropped all semblance to the silly, fun-loving grad student-cum-Lilim in here, and now seems pure business.

{Tina} I like this plan. I'm proud to be part of it.

* Paul looks at one of the police officers. "Everybody cleared out of the building?"

* Ian is all business as well, looking very prepared for combat.

{Officer} Have been for the past half-hour, sir. Some of the students are askign when they can go back in.

{Paul} Give us another hour... the other teams haven't finished their sweeps yet. We're going to check out the inside from the security office, and will be in touch.

* The officer blinks, but nods. "You've got it, sir."

* Paul nods, and leads the way to the west-side entrance with Ian and Tina.

* Tina follows with, eyes flicking around and listening for any disturbance.

* Ian is doing much the same thing as Tina.

* Nothing sounds odd as the trio enter... in fact, it's really, really quiet, and the lights are still on in those places where they were left on. Paul leads the way quickly to the first-floor security office.

{Ian} . o O (Too quiet.)

* Tina mutters internally about the damned impractical Faye boots she's in, in the small bit she's not involving in looking around for tampering, already pondering how to check for tampering in the computer systems.

* Paul lets them into the security office, which is also quiet, as the other guards aren't there. He frowns. "We should have somebody here...." He looks around, even as he goes to the master camera console...

* Tina mutters quietly.

* Paul starts bringing up camera footage, flipping through the current feeds. "... the hell?"

{Ian} *q* Keep your eyes open, folks-- what is it?

* Tina jerks her head up, the wig sliding a bit. {q} "What?"

* Paul jerks a thumb up at one of the monitors. "Camera thirty five's out." He fiddles with the controls. "I'm gonna get a playback of its last moments... you two look at the other monitors...."

{Ian} Right. *watches the other monitors as Paul works*

* Tina nods, working through the cameras fluidly in sequence.

* Nothing... nothing... nothing down this hallway... nothing down that... waitasecond.

* Tina pauses, looking at the Waitasecond.

* For a moment, one of the cameras sees a figure in black, followed by another, carring a big box. Another camera reports much the same thing. And a camera set to observing the outside shows a pair of nondescipt vans parked in the loading bay.... one with its back door open.

* Tina swears. "Fuck. Guys, look at this. We have a robbery going on."

* Ian looks. "Where is that camera at?"

{Tina} Looking right now. Paul, any way to contact Shoshemai?

* Paul frowns. "Worse than that... they took out the camera leading to the ACT lab's hallway on the third floor. It went out about 18 minutes ago. And dial {number}, Tina... that's his current right now."

* Tina swears more, in several creative ways, and is dialing before he finishes speaking.

* The camera in question is one on the first floor, leading from one of the stairwells.

{Ian} Think a closer look might be in order.

{Shoshemai} {harried} Yo?

{Tina} Shosh! We've got a bugulary going on from the ACT lab, and guys carrying stuff, pictured on cameras (number) and (number), with a pair of vans in the DCL's loading bay--target that and the first floor camera, if you can.

{Paul} The ACT's on the third floor, just around the corner from the elevators... thank God they did the -right- thing and locked onto a floor and opened when the alarm was pulled, so they can't use them, they're stuck with the stairs.

* Shoshemai pauses a second. "Right. On it, I'll do what I can. You guys coming there in a few?"

{Tina} Depends. May need to check for hacks and maybe hail Boss. Luck.

* One of the second-floor cameras is also reporting much the same thing, as men move quickly, still clad in black, and there's the glint of metal on their backs... quite possibly guns.

{Tina} And with weapons. Shitshitshit.

{Shoshemai} {pause} Right. Wait. {click}

{Ian} Think I should get down to the loading bay.

* Tina nods, biting her lip. "Take care. I'll be handling the data end, likely."

{Ian} *nods back* I will. *darts out the door, finding the quickest path down to the loading area*

* Tina looks after him for a brief moment, then looks for the nearest terminal.

* Paul mmms. "Right. I'll head upstairs... or not..." He watches the malakite go. "Hot-blooded, isn't he?" The nearest terminal is off to one side of the office.

{Tina} {wryly} Booting head is his job, Paul. {little wry grin, sitting and logging in, fingers blurring} Anything else funky going on? And will Shosh need your bod for anything soon?

* Tina meanwhile types like mad, concentrating with all her not inconsiderable intellect on any obvious hacks into the ACT lab.

* The fastest way to the loading area, for Ian right at the moment, is down several hallways to the east, where there is a side-entrance to it... The main causeway of the building to the south is the route the robbers have been taking.

* To Tina's practiced eye and fingers... there aren't any.

* Though... some of the machines Tina can't -=ping- anymore...

* Ian charges down the eastern hallways, looking for the side entrance in question.

{Tina} Fuuuck. Somebody's cut connection to some of the ACT lab machines, Paul. I can't ping them no how no way. {pause} Did Shosh say it was big-D Disturbance?

* The entrance is findable, next to another stairwell... its entrance is hidden in shadow so Ian can observe things for a quick moment, should he choose...

{Paul} I'm sure if the Senschal needs me, he'll let me know... and yes, the latter... he was able to hear -something- Disturbing the symnphony...

* Ian does indeed chose to observe, immediately slowing down and becoming very silent and watchful, checking doors and stairwells.

{R-Type} s/choose

{Tina} ...shit. Bad, Paul. I just hope it's not Technology then.

{Tina} And we may need to get to the ACT yesterday, so I can find out what they did.

* Indeed, Ian can see a couple of figures moving from the main loading bay doors, carrying items into the back of the open van. Another figure lounges against the back wall by the door, idly looking about, hands behind his head, not participating in the shuffling of items.

* Paul frowns. "You'll need somebody to back you up, then, either way..."

* Ian's eyes narrow, focusing on the lounging figure and resonating.

{Tina} Yeah....I'd much appreciate it. Just watch your own butt, please? {little smile} You don't get the option of even Trauma if...

* Tina trails off, not wanting to Go There, as she gets up.

* Apparently, Ian's too far away to gain eye contact, or the other figure's looking the other way, or the lighting's wrong... either way, Ian doesn't even get his shoe size.

{Ian} . o O (-damn-... this is -not- my day... have to get in closer...)

* Paul mmms, getting up. "give me a moment to call the rest...." He taps a control on his comm device, and speaks into it. "Miss Manoa-Perez and I are heading up to the ACT to check on something there... get a pair of officers down here in the guard station -now-, I think we've been compromised."

* The only way Ian can get closer would be to actually exit the vicinity of the stairwell, go through the door, and actually go -outside-.

* The officer on the other end replies int he affirmative.

{Ian} . o O (could Sing but that might draw attention...) *curses silently and looks for other shadows to hide in, closer to the perps*

* Well, Ian -could- possibly double-back, and take the north entrance/exit he passed on the way, and circle around to the bay.... it'd be a bit further, but it'd be outdoors.

{Ian} . o O (Not much choice.) *doubles back and charges toward the north entrance, going as fast as he can short of a Song of Motion*

{Tina} {q} Okay...let's get crackin', Paul.

* Tina heads out of the security office, eyes flicking around.

* The outside is much like it was, cool autumn air... circling around brings Ian to the loading bay shadows, where Ian can see both vans parked, and the figure barely visible off to the side of one of them.

* Ian slips back into the shadows and tries to get as close as he can in silence.

* Paul leads the way out of the office and to one of the back stairwells that head to the third floor. Two of the officers nod to him as they pass by, taking their places in the security office.

* Tina nods as well, looking surprisingly collected despite the rather revealing costume she's still wearing.

{Tina} {m} I would kill for getting out of this damn outfit. I usually don't program like this. {crooked smile}

* There's fortunately a handicapped access ramp along one wall, partially hidden by shadows, that would allow Ian to get closer, if he's careful...

* Ian stays close to the ground, moving with almost catlike smoothness and care, staying in the shadows...

* Paul hehs, and starts taking the stairs up two at the time.

* Tina follows, muttering at heels.

* Ian gets close enough that he can make another attempt at resonating the figure or any other figures there, still hidden in the shadows in the cold night air.

* Ian looks for whichever figure is the closest, and puts extra concentration and effort into resonating that figure.

* The closest figure is one of the men shifting items about into the back of one of the vans... his greatest virtue is to keep his family well-provided-for, depsite everything...

* ...for you see, his worst Sin was to become a willing Soldier of Hell.

* Paul and Tina eventually reach the third floor. For the moment, things appear clear down the third floor of the concourse.

* Ian's eyes narrow to slits and he bites back a snarl of righteous anger.

* The figures continue doing the thing of moving things into the back of the van... the figure who's leaning doesn't appear to have noticed Ian.

* Ian inches a little closer. . o O (come over this way, you Hellsworn bastard. give me a clean shot.)

* The figure Ian resonated is moving with one of his companions back for the loading bay doors.

* Tina heads for the nearest terminal that seems to have been disconnected.

* Ian looks to see where the third figure is in relation to the others.

* WEll, there's other labs on the Third floor Tina can access... but the ACT lab is still too far away for them, on the far end of the concourse...

* Tina makes for the ACT lab, then. Mutters, kicks off the boots, and makes for the ACT lab carrying them, but same diff.

* The third figure, the one in black leathers, is still lounging by the loading bay door, seemingly unaware of Ian's presence, his eyes glinting beneath his shaggy black hair.

* Ian focuses tightly on those glinting eyes and resonates this figure too.

* Paul follows, covering Tina... so far, there aren't other figures to be seen... they're on the stairwells, most likely. Hopefully.

* Tina heads for the ACT lab, eyes open for any other signs of tampering from any other labs they pass en route.

* To Ian's perceptive senses, he finds out that this being aspires to be a truly powerful theif and destroyer, pulling off spectacular crimes for his own gains.... even though he doesn't have that potential in the grand scheme of the Symphony. He's only going to be a moderate Calabite of Theft, with no desire to Redeem.

* No signs of tampering make themselves known to Tina... no, wait.

* Tina hesitates.

* You know, wall-cameras aren't usually -shattered- in their mountings.

* Tina swears.

* Tina swears muchly. She obviously picked up a profuse vocabulary in Tartarus and Shal-Mari.

* Paul frowns, and uses a small mirror from a pouch on his belt to check around the corner to the lab doors proper.

* Ian waits... -barely- waits... for the other two figures to leave the area...

* Tina checks for any sign of projectile weaponry.

* There don't -appear- to have been any used... the two figures head into the building fully, presumably now out of audio range... and we fork.

* Tina mutters. {vq} "So."

* Paul checks his mirror, angling it a bit so that Tina can see it too. *vq* "The doors are open, but I can't see anybody in there... but it's a big room."

* Tina nods, peering into it. {vq} "The shattered camera....really, really worries me. It wasn't shot. And there was disturbance. Which means one of two things."

* Ian crouches, focuses fully on the Calabite, throws a point of Essence into a Song of Motion, and -CHARGES-.

## R-Type rolled 3d6 = 9 (5 1 3).

{Tina} {vq} Either a Song and/or a Celestial wrecked it... or the way it's wrecked... {trails off, biting her lip}

* The room beyond is mostly dark, though the placement of shadows seems off in there. Paul mms. *vq* "..you're thinking Calabite? but don't they have problems 'round tech?"

{Tina} {vq} Yup. They do. Which is why dear unlamented ex-boss never has them for Servitors. But... {pauses, scanning into shadows, continuing absently} they *can* be precise with their resonance when needed....

{Tina} {vq} Don't want to run into one. They nasty.

* There's a -Thrum- in the local Symphony, perceiveable to even Paul and Tina, as Ian's Song goes off, throwing the Malakite pell-mell towards the Calabite, whose head snaps up at the Disturbance and the man who's charging at him. "....WHA?"

* Tina jerks her head up, eyes going wide.

* Also noticeable to Tina, from the mirror placement, is that the keycard-box by the door is rather dim... though she likely didn't notice that....

{Tina} {w} I think a Song went off... {glances in the room again, blinking and rather distracted}

* Paul's head turns towards the 'sound'. *vq* "-Shit-." His hand frees up his pistol from its holster. *w* "No kidding..."

* Ian aims for the center of the demon's chest, shoulder-first.

* ...motion can be seen within the ACT room, and rapid muttering...

{Tina} {vq} Fuck. Companneee, Paul...

* Tina's stance shifts.

* The Calabite snarls, still caught off-guard for the moment, and gets body-checked into the brick wall behind him. He growls, and tries to shove Ian away, even as he lashes out with his resonance....

* Paul nods, and draws his gun. Inside, the figure noises can be heard to be getting louder. ".... i TOLD you bringing that loose cannon along was dumb!" "Nevermind -him-, we've gotten most of what we came for! Tell the drivers to haul ass and let's get out of here!"

## MServ rolled 3d6 = 10 (6 2 2).

* Ian rolls with the shove and dodges the wave of entropy as best he can, just as quickly charging in with another blow.

* Tina nods to Paul, shortly, shifting to a judo ready stance, bringing the Song of Claws to the forefront of her mind...

* Or at least Ian -tried- to dodge...

* The Calabite laughs, his entropic resonance crashing against Ian's body and damaging it, shattering several ribs. He then follows up with a sucker-punch to that area.

{Calabite} You wanna go another round, Angel?

* The van whose back doors were closed starts up. WEll... it -attemts- to start up. There's confused yelling inside.

* There is the snick of locks on the van doors...

* Ian bites back a yell of pain and dodges the sucker punch by rolling away and getting to his feet. He channels Essence into a Song of Claws. *tight growl* "Bring it on, Destroyer."

* Upstairs, the figures can become more visible... male and female in the lead, both clad in black tights, followed by some of the guys... with guns.

* There's yelling inside the van. "Break the locks! Break the locks! Hotwire the damn thing!"

* The radio comes to life...

* A smooth, urbane, rather cheerfully annoyed voice comes on. "This is FM 111.1 WSHO, for your best in current music and sabotage, with a public service message. When you're a burglar, *NEVER* steal things, it gets the local authorities mad."

* Tina bites her lip, crouching. And incidentally really, really wishing she had Song of Shields Corporeal at the moment.

* Essence ripples off into the Symphony, but Ian's claws fail to appear. The Calabite lashes out with his resonance at the angel once more, closing in.

## MServ rolled 3d6 = 8 (2 1 5).

* The men in the van pale. "Angels?" "What the fuck?" "Break the windows and doors, damnit!"

* Ian can feel his bones on one side, and some of the lesser squishy organs, starting to crumple, as he fails his attempt to block the Calabite's entropy.

* Upstairs, the figures run around the corner... and straight into Paul and Tina, who were around the corner. "Gyah!"

* Tina crouches and leaps, Singing Claws to fingers, heading for the female.

## Tina rolled 3d6 = 9 (2 6 1).

* This time Ian does make a rather pained noise and crumples, still somehow having enough presence of mind to roll away. He tries to get behind the van or any other handy object.

* Paul, meanwhile, fires his pistol at the man. "Halt where you are and drop your weapons!"

* The van suddenly revs and squeals tires, moving between the Destroyer and the Malakite...

* There's yelling from inside the van, and the Calabite's head jerks up, as he gets clipped by the van and thrown towards the brick wall. Of course, given that the van was celestially-driven, and was also hitting things, the Symphony screams with the Disturbance....

{Shoshemai} . o O ({mutter})

* The short man upstairs -Gahs-, as he gets hit in the shoulder, thrown backwards by the holy bullet that Paul just fired.

## Tina rolled 3d6 = 7 (3 1 3).

* Ian looks between the van and the thrown Calabite, and with the remaining speed from the Song makes a beeline for the downed Diabolical, trying again to Sing his Claws out.

{Woman} Japeth! Dammit, you people have got guns, -use- them!

* The woman then glrks, as Tina gets the Woman in a chokehold.

* Tina is suddenly behind the Woman. "...depending on if you feel like having them used on *you*."

* Ian's song fails once more.. but at least he's running towards the Calabite, who's just now getting up...

* The woman struggles. "Look, we can make a Deal!" She shifts, trying to meet Tina's eyes. "Wouldn't you like to know who sent us?"

* Ian curses his horrifically bad luck this day, and grabs for the Calabite's neck with both of his hands, going for a choke and funneling Essence into his Generator attunement.

* Tina tightens her hold on the woman with all her (crappy) strength, averting her eyes away. "Sorry, ain't biting."

{Tina} . o O (Yay. Just what I need. Throttling a Sister. Thanks, God.)

* The shot man tries to get up, glaring at the woman, while several of the other theives are trying to sprint down the other stairwells. "Blessit, Helen, you trying to screw us over??"

* The calabite grabs back, trying to throttle in return, but screams as the Lightning flares into him... and it's rather more powerful than expected....

* Make that a -lot- more powerful than expected.

* Ian is... a bit taken aback by all this power, but at this point is NOT complaining and goes with it.

{Paul} I expect she's just trying to save her sorry selfish skin, demon... *he fires again at the struggling man.*

* Tina holds on to Helen, grunting.

* Tina suddenly stiffens, in her chokehold of the other Lilim, as Disturbance ROARS into the Symphony...

* The Calabite SHREIKS, as the lightning pours through him, frying his vessel beyond mere charring and into ash, Disturbance ripping across Symphony as the Lightning coalesces into the form of a man, tall, hawk-nosed, and stern.

* The other Lilim, about to attempt a Song of her own, goes pale as the sound of a Superior manifesting rips through the Symphony. "..... glk.... blessit...."

* Jean regards Ian calmly. "Deal with the men in the van." He then turns, and walks into the DCT proper.

* Tina takes this opportunity to bring her fist down on the back of the Tempter's neck, precisely.

* Ian is briefly stunned by everything that just happened, but does find the presence of mind to quickly reply "Yes, sir!", and turns his attention toward the van.

* The felled man upstairs grgles, and decides that now is a good time to expire.

* The two vans are still there... several of the men inside are trying to struggle to get out, or break the windows. And oh, did we mention the campus security guards who've been attracted by all the physical noise?

* The van doors unlock. Though with that little subtext if anybody plays Silly Buggers they'll close right again.

* The Lilim agh!s, as she gets hit in the back of the neck, and crumples to the floor.... just as the hawk-nosed man steps around the corner, regarding Paul, Tina, and the two others there.

* Tina looks up, from her unconscious Sister, and freezes dead as she sees the newcomer.

{Tina} {vvq} Boss...

* Ian ignores whatever pain he might be feeling and glares at the men, almost wishing they -would- get out. *snarled* "Repent, and I -MIGHT- let you live."

* Jean regards Tina calmly. "An efficent blow, Tiphareth." He then looks at the expired male vessel, and it is consumed with sparking lightning, removing all presence of its existance, even the bloodstains. He then moves over, and looks down at the collapsed, unconcious Lilim. "Helez, Lilim of Valefor." He looks at Tina. "The Senschal and the Malakite have the hellsworn under control, the ACT Labs computers have not been stolen, and the mortal authorities approach. Liason with them, and investigate further."

* Tina nods. "Understood, sir. And thank you. What of Helez?"

* The men in the van gulp lots, and start putting their hands up, either from the rather cross malakite staring them down, or the Campus and City cops surrounding the loading bay. "Drop your weapons and come out of the vans slowly, people!

* Ian puts a little more effort into staying completely upright and sounding unhurt. "I'd do what the nice policemen say if I were you."

* Jean regards the unconcious Lilim cooly. "Weighing all factors and circumstances into account, the precariousness of your own identity and the location of the Tether, standard policy for Hellborn applies."

* Paul blinks, looks at Tina, and the Lilim on the ground, and decides that being quiet is a very, very good idea right now.

* Tina inclines her head a moment, her face going quiet. "Understood and accepted, sir."

* Jean nods, curt, and Helez's body is limned with Lightning, crackling and sparking, removing the vessel from the Symphony. Once she is gone, he regards Tina and Paul again. "You and your companions have acted Efficently. I will expect full reports once you recover and before you begin your investigations."

* Tina nods, quietly. "I understand, sir. We will do our utmost to begin as soon as possible."

* Outside, the men are starting to get out of the vans... several of them are rather beaten-up, a couple are unconcious, and have to be carried out from being thrown about when the vans started moving about on their own... Policemen and Trauma groups are seeing to those there, and one perceptive Trauma-team person notices Ian.

* Jean nods. "Walk in Illumination."

* Jean rezzes out, his image fading to static snow, as a final ripple in the Symphony manifests, on top of all the other Disturbances that night.

* Tina nods. "Thank you, sir."

* Ian, about this time, has begun sagging to the ground. *vq, strained* "oh... damn..."

* Paul watches Jean go. Looks at where the two bodies were. And then looks at Tina. He moves over to her, offering a shoulder and arm. "C'mon... we better check on Ian..."

* The medic notices the sagging Ian. "God, what -happened- to you? Somebody get a stretcher!"

* Tina nods, looking suddenly old. {q} "Yeah...we better."

* There's noise from below, as Rebecca, and several other guards hurry up the main stairs, seeing Paul supporting Tina. "Paul? What -Happened-?"

{Paul} Miss Manoa-Perez has had a bit of a shock... I'll be escorting her outside... what's the sitrep out there?

{Ian} *strained* broken ribs... damn i need morphine...

{Rebecca} I don't know -what- that guy out there did, but he somehow managed to delay the theives enough for the Cops to show... he got knocked up in the process, though.

* Paul grunts. "Right. Rebecca, you and yours secure the ACT and DON'T TOUCH ANYTHING! We need to keep things in place for the regular cops."

{Rebecca} You don't have to tell me how to do my job, sir.... but right. *she looks somewhat wry while saying this, recognizing that her boss is somewhat stressed*

* The medic eases Ian onto the stretcher. "Easy there, big boy.... Somebody -really- did a number on you, christ... Get me some neo-Morphine, stat!"

* Tina stiffens a bit, listening to this and wincing at Rebecca's relation. {automatically} "How bad?"

* An assistant heads over with a side-pack, containing various happyfun pharmaceuticals, ready to distribute.

* Ian dutifully eases onto the stretcher, wincing repeatedly.

{Rebecca} Dunno, didn't have time to check as we came up here. He was fighting to stay up, though.

* Paul nods. "We'll check up on him, Tina."

* Tina hisses, and nods. "Thank you, Officer." {winces, closing eyes}

* Rebecca nods, sighing a bit. "I'm sure he'll be all right. He looked tough." She looks at Paul, and nods.

* Paul nods back, and starts guiding Tina towards the long stairwell on the concourse that leads to the first floor.

* Tina walks, seeming a bit grey.

* Paul mmms, quietly. *q* "It's hard, isn't it..." he murmurs, pitched only for Tina to hear. Upstairs, the sounds of the guards cordioning the area fades.

* The assistant applies several dermal patches along Ian's side, and the pain starts to dull, if not the actual damage that had been caused.

* Tina nods. {w} "So this is what it means to fight on the side of the light, Paul?" {looks haggard}

* Paul sighs, but nods. *w* "Part of it. I admit, I don't get the Powers all the time, but if one person has to be taken out, to keep others from being hurt, even if you know them...." He sighs, and looks older than his 60 years of age. "...well, whoever's after what's up there is determined enough."

* Ian is seen to relax a bit as those patches kick in. "guh...... thanks."

{Tina} {w} Yup. Me neither. I don't understand Boss. But I trust him. He Redeemed me. It's just... {hugs him one armedly, looking terribly young all of a sudden} {vqw} i never did that to a sister before...

* The medic smiles. "That's what we're here for. Now you just stay put, and we'll get you to the hospital soon enough, once the cops clear a path. You're stable at least, for the moment."

* Paul hugs back with his supporting arm. *vqw* "you just wish all of your sisters could make the choice you did, and wouldn't have had to go through that. or you. Mildred Potter's right. 'War is Hell'."

{Ian} *m* Great... *closes his eyes, looking for all the world like a guy who was just in the wrong place at the wrong time (...not to mention the wrong outfit)*

{Tina} {vqw} *Hell* is Hell. All my Sisters down there, blind to what Freedom really is, except for a lucky couple dozen, Paul... {closes her eyes, a tear leaking out}

* The various and sundry sounds of sirens doppler around the building, nicley mimicing the Echoes in the Symphony as the police and medics go about their business.

* Paul closes his eyes, and nods. *vqw* "But every day, another ones is born, and one gets a chance to start to learn the Truth. Through the actions others, and themselves. It's getting better than it was, thanks to people like us..." He opens his eyes again, as they get to the first floor.

* Ian silently listens to the corporeal and Symphonic noise, and wonders how Tiphareth and the others managed.

{Tina} {vqw} Yeah. And you. {pause} *Especially* people like you, Paul. You the main players, we just the supporting cast. {little grin, wipes her eye and hugs again onearmedly}

{Tina} {w} Gotta let Ian know...

* Paul hehs a bit, and offers a hankercheif to Tina from a pocket. *vqw* "Heh. I'm just a guy trying to do right... and this way, Tina..." He steers them towards the hallway opening to the loading bay doors outside. Both doors are opening, letting in the cool night air and the sound of the sirens.

{Tina} {vqw} Me too, Paul. {wipes her eyes} But'cha do it well. {shivers as the chill hits her}

{Ian} . o O (...and how long will -this- take to heal? i hate calabim...)

* Paul leads Tina outside, and waves with his free hand to a medic, who approaches with a blanket to be draped over her shoulders.

* Tina looks around, furtively.

* Hmm.... that rather roughed-up Malakite on a stretcher might be who Tina's looking for...

* Tina gasps in shock, finding said semi-Virtue pate' on said stretcher, reflexively pulling from Paul for a moment, before visibly restraining herself from just running over there.

* Ian doesn't notice any of this, still meditating on everything that went down, and making sure he didn't earn himself any rotten notes or anything...

* Paul notices too, and helps Tina make her way to the stretcher quckly but non-obviously.

* Tina also accepts any offered blankies though, because bloody, it's chilly out here.

{Tina} {worried} *Ian*?

* Paul mmms, and looks around for any of the closest medtechs... either to get them here if needed, or to hold them off if Tina tries anything...

* Ian cracks an eye open, identifies the source of the voice, and manages a weak smile. *m* "Hi honey... what's for dinner?"

* Paul coughs, and tries hard not to chuckle.

* Tina is down by Ian's stretcher in micro seconds. {m} "A good dose of Corp Healing when I get an opening. Mind if I mention you look like shit? What *happened*?"

{Ian} *m* Destroyer. He had good luck, I had real bad luck... at least until the Boss showed up..."

* There doesn't seem to be anybody particularly near, and Paul continues to keep a watchful eye for people coming near...

{Tina} {m} Shit. Cameras looked like Calabite work....but you're still here... {lays a hand on his shoulder, spending an Essence, carefully}

## Tina rolled 3d6 = 10 (1 4 5).

* The Symphony thrums with the sounds of recuperation and solace, ripples spreading outward as Ian's wounds reverse themselves, healing him internally and most of his structural damage, if not every ding and bruise within and without.

* Paul arches an eybrow, but remains still watchful for anybody reacting to the Essence expenditure or the Disturbance produced.

* Ian sighs with considerable relief as things are mostly put back together.

* Tina relaxes a bit as she hears the Song take effect.

{Tina} {vq} Better?

{Ian} *nods, vq* Owe you one. *wl*

* Tina snrks, giggling a trace hysterically. "We'll work it out later."

* Ian hehs a tiny bit. "yeah... later."

{Tina} {w} Marches tonight?

{Ian} *w* Sure.

{Tina} {w} Cool beans. {squeezes his hand a moment, before standing} I'll see you tomorrow too.

{Ian} *w* Sounds good.

{Tina} {w} Good....take care. {little smile, steps back}

* One of the medics starts making their way back to Ian and Tina. "Mr. Zybasko, we're ready to take you now...."

{Ian} yeah... *pause, beckons to Tina* hey...

* Paul nods. "I'll see Miss Manoa-Perez home, and make sure she's safe... hm?"

* Tina watches, standing by Paul, before blinking, and shifting down by Ian again. "Yup?"

* Ian leans over, whispers softly in her ear. *w* "love you."

* Tina chokes a little bit, going almost luminous in the dark from her blush. She pauses, nods mutely...

{Tina} {mouthed} y'too...

* Paul quirks a smile, watching, even as the medics are getting ready to move Ian to an ambulance.

* Ian smiles a bit, then closes his eyes and waits to be taken away.

* Ian is carried off by the nice men in white and whisked away.

* Tina stands up again, watching him go, with a slightly exhausted/ strung out/ now pretty goofy expression on her face.

* Paul nods to Tina, moving over. *q* "Let's get you home and get you some rest... likely a long day tomorrow."

{Tina} {q} Right... {rubs at her eyes} That works...you too. Oh god, I don't know whether to laugh, cry, or get stinking drunk or all three oh god...

{Paul} *q* You can do all three... I'll be the one driving. *wry look* And my night's not over yet... gotta make sure things are secure here before turning in, and you and Ian'll have to figure out what statements to give, and I've got to check with the Senschal... God, I feel old. *he smiles, wryly and tiredly.*

{Tina} {q} Yeah....yay. We'll probably figure that out tonight. {squeezes his hand} ...I feel damn old too.

* Paul squeezes back, and nods, as he starts guiding Tina towards one of the nearby cruisers, borrowing the Keys from a subordinate witht he explination that he's going to get Tina home and be right back... as we fade.

In Nomine 2070