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Messages - Riven

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An invitation inside? Cordell was both impressed and surprised -- impressed at just how gracious her host was, and surprised that he'd invite a known scoundrel aboard. She wasn't used to being asked to come aboard cargo ships, after all. Of course, there was a part of her that was wary of a trap... but she and Jackson were already in much the same boat metaphorically, so making it literal certainly wasn't a huge step. "Guess we be takin' this trust thing seriously then. All righty." She unclipped her cutlass from her belt and offered it to her fellow captain, followed by her pistols -- a gesture of good faith, as she doubted he was so trusting as to let her aboard armed. "I'll be on me best behavior, ye have me word. Dun be surprised if I gawk an' stare a tad at th' fancier bits o' yer vessel -- good engineerin' has a way o' catchin' me eye an' admiration."

Letting Jackson take the lead, Cordell fell into step behind him. What curious bedfellows an emergency above the high seas could make...

Introductions, birthdays, and departures. / Re: Hello!
« on: June 19, 2018, 06:05:38 PM »
Oh boy... that is a long tale to tell. ^_^;;

Short version is this: roughly 20 years, on and off. Got my start as a dumb kid writing terrible fanfiction who wandered into a competitive combat RP forum, got my butt kicked, and somehow managed to convince some fairly badass writers to teach me their word-ninja ways. It was a pretty aggressive forum where quality, writing style, and tactics were constantly getting compared and evaluated -- keep in mind, this was the heyday of DBZ and such, so things were a lot more "power level" driven and a lot less adventure/story focused. It was also the 90s and most of us were, predictably, young and confused back then... I doubt anybody back then really knew any better, honestly.

Since that point I've kinda been all over the place for various stints of time. AnimeLeague, back when they still did miscellaneous multiverse RPs, was one of the big ones. I've been on Kingdom Hearts and Soul Eater forums, original medieval fantasy, scifi, and superhero RPs, a pretty broad spectrum. You learn a lot from meandering across the "RPverse", not least about yourself. One thing I've discovered is that the more you know, the better you get as a writer, the more you realize that even the best of us have only just scratched the surface.

So... I guess that's your 'motivational thought' for the day. That, and "always have a landing strategy", but that goes without saying.  :P

Introductions, birthdays, and departures. / Re: Hello!
« on: June 17, 2018, 07:13:16 PM »
Ah, neat! Not really familiar with the Percy Jackson series myself (I'm vaguely aware that it's 'Greek mythology meets the modern world' but not really in the loop beyond that), but I can certainly appreciate a fandom with a taste for legends and lore of yore. That being the case, this is probably our first encounter. BTW, should you ever be in the mood to hear an old man rant and rave about how forum RP has changed over the last 20 years, lemme know!

... Ye gawds, I'm such a relic that Ozpin oughts put me in a vault. ~_~;;

Everywhere Else / Re: The Things We Do For Love [VCVS]
« on: June 17, 2018, 06:41:04 PM »
(OOC: Sorry about the delay on this -- wrote it up earlier in the week and then forgot that I hadn't posted it yet, so my bad.)

The sharp report of a sniper rifle going off was the first of three -- three sounds that, even each on their own, could've upended the entire situation in moments. As it was, however, they happened in such rapid succession that only the last one truly made an impact. Scarce seconds after Juno smashed through the warehouse's cheap concrete, no doubt drawing the attention of any remaining Fang who weren't attentive enough to be alerted by the rifle fire, the true thunder flooded the area.

Literal thunder.

The ignited primer fluid did what lightning Dust is known to do. At the moment of ignition there was a blinding flash, intense enough that even those looking away and closing their eyes shut still couldn't keep out the light entirely. Under normal conditions the resulting surge of electrical energy would've gone in all directions, at least at first. However concrete, like that in the building's floor and walls, is naturally a very good insulator -- though both, the walls especially, would he wracked by the pressure wave mere seconds later the lightning was orders of magnitude faster. In that opening blink, that minuscule fragment of time, the storm of lightning that Caja's impostor had unleashed had exactly one direction it could go: UP. And up it went, a single immense thunderbolt that literally tore the tin roof off and flung it, in hundreds of charred pieces, high up into the air. For one brief moment, heaven and earth were bridged by a jagged wound of searing white light. Then came the shockwave, pulverizing the walls into concrete chunks no bigger than a dinner plate. What nearby buildings still had windows saw them shattered, and a few abandoned cars ended up flipping end over end... and that wasn't all the damage, not hardly. When the smoke finally cleared, literally nothing remained of the warehouse -- the blast had loosened the stone it sat upon in a chain reaction, the concrete foundation sliding off the edge of the canyon and into the dark below. It was hard to imagine how the White Fang members who'd been inside could've survived.

Rory woke up sputtering and coughing from smoke inhalation perhaps a dozen feet from Juno. He didn't remember when he'd activated both his shields, but apparently he had; shaking loose some of the rubble that had landed on him, he glanced around and saw the state of the area. It really, seriously looked like a bomb had gone off. "Is... is everyone okay?"

"WHOO HOO! Are we having fun yet? Because I sure am!"

Striding out of the haze, Caja's doppelganger strode over to Juno and offered him a hand. "You've got questions, I'm sure. Now's not the time -- the police will be on their way here any moment and, to be frank, the chances of your lil' puppy-dog still being in one piece after you've convinced the cops of what happened... eh, not good, honestly." She -- or he, by the sound of the voice -- gestured towards a relatively undamaged building a good distance from the blast site. "I have a ride prepared, and once we're out of here you can decide if you're up to do business or prefer your rescuing chances as is, hero boy." He turned and began to walk, changing over to a near-perfect mimicry of Caja's voice to add "C'mon Juno, time's a wasting!" Followed by dry, chuckling laughter.

Managing to get to his feet, Rory pinged Sam and Verdant's Scrolls while making his way over to Juno. "Okay, I have no idea what we should do now. Any thoughts?" As if on cue, police sirens could be heard in the distance...

Everywhere Else / Re: Hunt for the Howling Storm {CLOSED}
« on: June 14, 2018, 06:00:13 PM »

"Yer compassion's appreciated, trust me." Cordell took a slow, deep, steadying breath. As if on cue a small wisp of green haze began to emanate from Quisling's bound hands -- dissipating to nothing as the pirate gave the traitorous rodent a swift kick to the head, knocking him out cold. She smirked. "May not be at me best, but I ain't licked yet. Ye'd best see t' what's left o' th' fight -- no worries, I'll make sure this rat bastard don't slip his leash."

"By th' by,"
She added, scooping up Quisling's arsenal as she powered down her blade. "Lemme know if'n ye want any o' these, aye?"


Fallon was, at this point, beyond reason -- so blinded by fury and desperation that he didn't know when to quit. Even getting the wind momentarily knocked out of him by Rust only slowed his pace, and in that gasping, wheezing interlude he'd pulled out his pistol, quickly using the same blurring trick on it as his saber. Rust would have a difficult time deflecting or dodging the incoming three rounds, though they also weren't likely to do much to his Aura. Clearly, the lieutenant was just buying time to close the distance... though given Alizarin's specialty, he might well regret doing so.

With the feed from their machine gun abruptly getting turned back on them, the one remaining Fang Bullhead completely lost its initiative and seemed at a loss for how to respond. Bullet holes now pocked its hull and thruster housings, with one particular shot having splintered the armored glass of the canopy like a spider-web. After a clear moment of hesitation the ship began to veer aside, clearly intending to disengage and deploy the grunts on board -- this was the best opening Solar would get to take her shot and end this.

ENFORCER ~ Lt.Fallon :: ██████▫▫▫▫▫▫▫▫▫▫▫▫▫ [30%]
[Semblance effect: Melee strikes and pistol fire are more difficult to anticipate.]
[Lightning Dust effect on melee weapon.]

SABOTEUR ~ Agent Quisling ::▫▫▫▫▫▫ [0% - AURA BROKEN]
WHITE FANG BULLHEADS :: 1 Remaining {damaged, disoriented}

Introductions, birthdays, and departures. / Re: Hello!
« on: June 13, 2018, 04:52:35 PM »
Just out of curiosity, you mentioned having prior experience with RP forums. One veteran RPer to another, care to share a bit of your history? Any forums of particular interest in your past? We might have crossed paths under different names at some point (I've gone by 'Nascent' and 'Specter' previously, btw).

Introductions, birthdays, and departures. / Re: Hello!
« on: June 12, 2018, 03:09:35 PM »
Heyo! Always a pleasure to welcome another forum RP veteran to our humble corner of the net! I'm Riven -- part-time grumpy ol' bastard, part time Action Banner designer, full-time weaponized muffin magnate! As you can see in my sig I have a decently full roster of characters both good, wicked, and "it's complicated", so if you see anyone in the lineup that you'd like to have a thread with just lemme know! BTW, nice job on your first character profile; you are seriously off to a running start here. Good stuff!

Now then, onto serious business... how do you feel about nicknames? 'Oner'? 'Builder'? Maybe just 'On'? Lemme know what you're cool with.  8)

And now, as is my tradition, I'd like to offer you a freshly-baked welcome muffin as your unofficial initiation to the forum. Just need you to hold this GPS transmitter... good, now stand right about there... aaaaaaand MUFFIN INBOUND!

Spoiler: show

Welcome to the RWBYverse, m'friend! ;D

Everywhere Else / Re: Ways of the World [Ordelis] (CLOSED)
« on: June 12, 2018, 01:45:15 PM »
(OOC: She's never gonna stop being hilariously out-of-touch, is she? xD)

After sending the text message and waiting for Solar to respond, Sean had opted for a quick shower to get the scent of motor oil and Dust residue off. Still dripping wet, he'd just finished and grabbed a towel when a meteorite came crashing through the roof of his shed-house... a meteorite comprised of one part faunus girl and one part butt-ugly bird. Blinking and coughing as everything settled, the young smuggler could only blink in stunned disbelief at the sight that greeted his eyes.

This was not what he'd had in mind.

Hastily wrapping a towel around his waist, Sean sighed as Solar proudly held her catch. "Boss, you are definitely not lacking in the enthusiasm department. Details, however... may not be your strong suit." He regarded the bird with some surprise, then gradually traced the path of Solar's entrance with his eyes and put two and two together. She'd caught it. By hand. Ho. Lee. Shite. "Soooooooo... couple quick things. One:" He pointed to the turkey vulture. "Those? They eat dead things. As in 'died out in the sun and rotted for a couple of days' dead things, hence the smell. Not a good meal idea. Two: you didn't have to bring food. I mean, it's cool that you, um, caught that and all? But, yeah, I've got lunch covered for today. Figured you deserve a taste of true Vacuan cooking after everything you've been though."

"Which brings up three... mind if I, uh, get some pants on real quick?"

The Vale Region / Re: A Walk In The Shadows (Inex, CLOSED)
« on: June 12, 2018, 12:21:00 PM »
"Wonderful. You'll know her by the symbol -- my symbol -- that she bears: a single drop of blood, worn in the form of small ruby earrings. Just let me know the address and I'll see that she meets you where and when you wish."

Some Time Later...

It had been a long time since Maria had walked around in Vale. The kingdom, known for its peaceful and balanced disposition, wasn't exactly rife with opportunity the way Mistral or Vacuo were... still, it was a far cry from the stern and insular nature of Atlas, to be sure. She'd kept herself to nondescript, business-casual attire, embracing short sleeves and pants with open seams that went halfway up her lower legs to make the most of the day's late-spring warmth -- a good day for gelato indeed. Thin-frame sunglasses rested on the curve of her nose, dimly reflecting the hustle and bustle around her as she navigated the streets and sidewalks. And of course, a subtle pair of teardrop-shaped rubies hung one to each ear. She put out a cigarette beneath her flat-heeled shoe as she spotted the gelato place up ahead, a soft smile gracing her lips.

It was time to meet "the invisible girl".

Everywhere Else / Re: The Tangled Web We Weave [SerAnad] (CLOSED)
« on: June 12, 2018, 11:54:41 AM »
A secretary, was it? Maria's face took on a bemused expression as she listened, booting up her computer and attaching a long thin cable from it to her Scroll. She was, first and foremost, an information broker -- she knew everything that could be gleaned from Shoko-La's not-insignificant reputation and a few things besides. A secretary was, admittedly, not impossible... but seemed unlikely from what she could recall. Besides, this number had not been cheap to acquire. Still, pleasantries were in order at this stage of things.

"Yes, hello. My name is Alessa Cales, calling on behalf of certain third-party interests here in Mistral." The name was, of course, a lie -- a precaution, really, and fairly standard practice for first contact in this line of business. Also standard was the "flag"; 'third party interests' was one of a handful of fairly well known tell-phrases in the black market that everyone from the lowliest thief-for-hire to the heads of influential crime families would know, even across the boundaries of kingdoms. It was a way to say 'my employer wishes to do business discreetly' without actually coming out and saying as much, and although Maria was posing as her own secretary it was still technically true. "We're looking to recruit a talented individual to act as an outside mediator in an estate dispute," More subtle language; 'we're looking for a freelance mercenary to do a hit'. "And you were recommended to us.  I realize this would be a long-distance job, considering, however my supervisor is quite insistent on the necessary qualifications. To that end, travel and all related expenses would be covered. Do you know if your employer has any openings in the near future?"

(OOC: Heyo! The SALTy Sea threads are officially merged now, so... who's ready to flee a sinking ship with a pirate of questionable intent?)

She had to fight the urge to panic as her Semblance reported back, their situation clearly going from bad to worse in short order. Grimm. Almost certainly aquatic Grimm, at that, and she rather doubted that anyone here was an expert in underwater combat. While it wasn't surprising that the dark beasts would be drawn to the panic aboard a sinking ship, the notion that they could even reach the ailing vessel amid a storm like this was a bit surprising. Clearly there was far less turbulence and chaos below the waves than upon them.

Well, it was time to make a choice...

Abandoning her stealth and stepping out into the open, the fiery young pirate leveled her cutlass at the two Atlas students ahead of her. "Oi! You lot!" Her words were shouted such that they couldn't be ignored, and no doubt when the Dorian and Avery turned and saw an unfamiliar woman in an outlandish outfit brandishing a blade at them they'd have plenty of concerns. Those concerns would soon turn to alarm as, with a sharp hiss of pressurized air, the blade of said sword shot through the air towards them both, missing by only about a foot. The blade clattered off a bulkhead further down their route before swiftly magnetizing, the woven metal tow line connecting it to the rest of the cutlass going taut. Using it to stabilize herself against the jostling and swaying of the ship, Cordell let the retracting line pull her into a light-footed sprint. "Grab a hold, an' don't bother me with questions! Yer ship's takin' on more'n just water from th' sea, boys -- we're gonna have t' fight our way t' shore if any of us wanna live through this!" It was an alliance of convenience, no question, but hardly unprecedented. When Grimm threatened, the people of Remnant -- even sworn enemies -- knew it was either fight together or risk dying alone.

And she was not dying here!

AMA Section / Re: Designing Characters
« on: June 12, 2018, 10:07:15 AM »
RWBY or non-RWBY, what I've found best is to always build a character around one core concept, then take that concept and expand it out logically until I have the essential framework for a character.

Take, for example, Rory Vogel. Yes, he has an actual fairytale basis ('The Juniper Tree' of Brothers Grimm fame), but I took from the story one central concept -- a child abused by their family -- as a basis to start with. Survivors of abusive home lives develop all sorts of unhealthy coping mechanisms, but one of the common ones is a heightened state of wariness and self-protection. It's easy to see how that might inform personality, but how to express it as a combat style? A shield, of course, but a warrior with a shield doesn't really convey dysfunction. A warrior with two shields, however...

For another example: Maria Vogel. The mythic inspiration is, of course, the urban legend of Bloody Mary -- in Maria's case I chose to make 'blood' the core focus. Making her a hemophiliac... well, that practically wrote itself, and having a Semblance that involved the use of blood seemed logical as well. But blood is more than just a red liquid. It contains our DNA, the blueprint of identity. In the case of women it also has strong implications, tied up in sexuality, maturity, and the "breaking of innocence". All these factors guided my thought process when it came to establishing her abilities and aptitudes, her personality and the underlying causes of her malevolence (and occasional beneficence), and even a few aspects of her appearance.

My advice is that it's always good to have one or two key ideas at a character's core, something that the rest of your design choices can play off of, reflect, and in certain carefully constructed cases even stand in contrast to. That last one is important -- having a theme is great, but every character needs unresolved conflicts to be truly interesting. Being in conflict with themself can most definitely fit the bill; despite not wanting to expose himself to more suffering Rory still aims to become a Huntsman and is the first to leap in and take hits so his allies don't have to, whereas Maria (despite being an overall cold and calculating person) is not cruel or senselessly malicious. Creating the potential for what I call "the unresolved why" is a big part of making characters that are not only interesting but genuinely seem to readers like they could be real people.

Everywhere Else / Ways of the World [Ordelis] (CLOSED)
« on: June 11, 2018, 05:04:56 PM »
S C E N E ~ M U S I C
Bazaar Merchants
by Derek Fiechter

Ah, Vacuo. The City in the Shade. The "Gem of the West". The "Great Oasis".  And, for one particular freewheeling young man... home.

Sort of.

One can only be so impressed by all the gleam and dazzle of a city while living out of an old shed, cutting smuggling deals in back alleys between classes, and routinely dashing across the desert wastes for either business or pleasure. Sean had long ago ceased to be impressed by the city whose walls he sheltered behind, having seen too much of its shadows to be naive and not enough of the world to draw comparisons. To him, the "great" kingdom-city was just a place where those with a mite of authority tried unsuccessfully to tell everyone how to live their lives, largely to be ignored and disregarded in favor of the strong, the cunning, or the wealthy. Shade had its fair share of all three, of course, but not nearly enough to change this wild town's soul... though, truth be, it was more like the nation's soul. Wanderers. Outcasts. The stubborn and misguided breaking bread with the jaded and unscrupulous. It was the old wisdom, pure and simple, the 'one unspoken rule' that everyone somehow seemed to know regardless. If you can survive here, you're welcome here.

Laying on a crate in the early-morning shade of his ramshackle abode, Sean wasn't exactly deep in thought. More like 'skimming over memories'. He'd just met his new teammates less than a week back, and after the fiasco that had brought them together it was just yesterday that things had finally quieted down. Gods, how he hated getting questioned and lectured by cops. Even though he and his new friends had finally proven their innocence in that whole mess he still got the business just for "getting mixed up in trouble". Ugh. Somehow he knew that even if he one day did become a Huntsman, live like a goddamn hero, he'd never get any respect around here. And he'd basically just been an 'accomplice to vigilante mischief' in the whole ordeal...

... Which brought his team lead, the center of the storm as it were, to mind. He hadn't really checked in with Solar much after all that went down, and classes were due to start soon. That meant books. Lectures. Homework. All things that he rather doubted a faunus girl from an isolated mountain village had much experience with. Thinking back, there were rather a lot of things she hadn't exactly been savvy on. Slowly, a smile cracked across his face. Yeah... now that wouldn't be a bad way to spend one of the last days of vacation. Rocking back until he was literally doing a handstand, the scruffy blonde sprang to his feet with a pleased-with-himself smile and pulled out his Scroll.

TO: Solar Raise
MESSAGE: Sup boss! Things finally settled down on your end a bit, I hope? Figure we oughta meet up before classes, get you familiar with the city beyond just alleyways & rooftops. Lunch is on me. You game?

Everywhere Else / The Tangled Web We Weave [SerAnad] (CLOSED)
« on: June 10, 2018, 01:24:39 PM »
It was all over the papers and news-feeds in Mistral: 'Historian Murdered - White Fang Involved?' A catchy headline, to be sure, packed with just the right measure of mystery, theatricality, and political volatility to catch eyes and set weak hearts aflutter with concern. Three days earlier the police had found one Mr. Alan Neland, who'd been missing for about a week, fatally tortured and left for dead in the basement of a hotel in the tourism district of Wind Path. Neland was many things: head of the Mistrali Historical Society, a personal collector of antiquities, and a single father to three young girls -- simply put, the perfect victim to rouse sympathy. The White Fang connection also seemed a little too perfect: an unmarked rental van found abandoned in an alley two blocks away, a damaged Fang mask with blood splatter on it tucked into the glove compartment and Neland's wedding band -- a reminder of his wife, a Huntress who'd been reported KIA years beforehand -- discovered wedged into the van's seat cushions. To the casual reader it was the perfect story to evoke anti-Fang and anti-faunus sentiment.

By Maria's read of the situation, however, the story was so obvious and choreographed that it had to be hiding something. She sat in her apartment, newspaper laid out in front of her as her eyes scanned the contents for the second time. She was one of the most well-connected people in all of Mistral, but this headline had caught her completely by surprise. A new player in the kingdom committing crimes and blaming it on the Fang? A splinter-faction? Something in the dark web that was Mistral's underworld had clearly shifted, and it left her uncomfortable.

Then her Scroll chimed -- an authentication code, followed a minute later by a call from a familiar number. Unlike most of her contacts and clientele, this one was trusted... well, mostly trusted. She picked up without bothering to activate the voice masking she typically used. "Fancy getting a ring from you today. To what do I owe the call?" She paused, ruby eyes going back to the page. "Yes, I've seen. In fact, I have today's paper in front of me right now." Another pause, this one significantly longer; Maria leaned back as she listened to the gravelly voice on the other end of the line, her expression going from nonchalant to eyebrow-lifted curious as she did. "... You don't say? That does make things rather interesting. And concerning. Still, I'm not entirely sure that I should be getting involved, desire to know more notwithstanding."

" . . . I see. And the 'client' is willing to pay how much?"

"... Why yes, that does cast things in a rather different light. One problem, however. Given the nature of the situation I'm not sure I can rely on any of my local contacts, and this is most certainly not a two-person job."

"... No need to concern yourself. You know me -- I'm nothing if not resourceful. In fact, there's someone operating in Vacuo who should be perfect for this. I'll make the arrangements and let you know when everything's in place."

"...Yes, a pleasure doing business with you as well."

Minutes Later, Somewhere In Vacuo, the Scroll of one Shoko-La Bitter would register an incoming call from an unfamiliar number...

The Vale Region / Re: Within Nature ~ Training [Rush] (CLOSED)
« on: June 10, 2018, 12:24:01 PM »
The old faunus was clearly pleased with how Juno was responding, a soft smile on his lips as he brought his own knee up to intercept Juno's. "Good! You understand that the staff is just one tool -- your arms and legs are levers as well, as is your body... and your emotions."

Launching into a low back flip, Budonoki immediately recovered his stance upon landing. He had, however, tipped his hand in what he'd said, giving away the true aim of the exercise. "Your team returned from, shall we call it, an unofficial mission recently." He was clearly referring to the rescue operation for Caja. Returning to the matter at hand, the old cat whirled his staff before launching a flurry of short, abrupt strikes Juno's way. "The wisdom of old says that we must understand both ourselves and our enemy if we are to succeed. Yours is a complicated path, with faunus as both hated foes and dearest friends." There was a pause in the professor's movements during which he adopted a defensive posture. "Your thoughts and feelings towards the faunus are complicated, conflicted, yes? Show me. Come at me!"

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