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2016-10-16 Masquerade

From Transformers: Lost and Found

Masquerade
Date 2016/10/16
Location Verander - High Town
Participants Rung, Skystalker, Conduit
NPCs Springlock, Lumina
Plot Colony: Verander
Summary High Town celebrates the new crop of sparks with - what else - a town-wide party.

The townsfolk only retrieved half of the sparks from the crop offered up by Drieger, as agreed to with the pirate Plundercrash. However, the crop was so great that even half of them is a lot, and absolutely cause for celebration, the preferred mode of which is the Masquerade.

High Town was a pretty happening place before, but now it is nearly a pier-to-pier party. Colored lights and fanciful decorations adorn the buildings, stodgy and ramshackle alike, and joyous music sounds from every block. Locals amble through the streets while wearing a variety of masks (those similar to the rogue pirate Simoom's are the most popular) and while toting a variety of beverages. Shops have flung open their doors and set up by the roadside, doing a brisk business in party favors and fun trinkets.

Rung isn't sure what to expect coming down to the colony, having only heard the story about the titan and pirates from several of his patients. Sounds like it was quite an adventure, and a place Rung just had to see for himself. So here he is, a deep blue half mask with swirls of gold balanced on his face- though the mask comes at a cost as he cannot wear his glasses.. meaning he is essentially walking around half blind. From what he can see? The place looks beautiful.

Skystalker has had some interesting shifts primarily on the Lost Light, though several as excursions into the Verander system and its belts to do some scouting in the vicinity. It's a tricky colony, and even then he's incidentally tried to keep a distance because of the piracy levels. Perhaps he stopped down for a drink once before. Now, with the celebrations leaning towards the gift of new sparks, and the mood of the colony more uplifted than the tension before, Skystalker decides it is better late than never.

Skystalker ventures down by himself in his altmode, fitting in against the backdrop of hoverships and more distant ships. There's even someone along the pier he lands in that comes up to him as if he were a vessel-- only to be quite embarassed when he transforms and alights onto his pedes. There's a silent smile of greeting from Skystalker as he slinks away, slipping into the colorful streets with a fan of his wingtips and the shift of golds and blues in his biolights. He's quite glad he waited, when he comes upon the first avenue strung with decoration and vendors alike, the colors reflecting off of his armor. Look at this place!

Conduit picked the wrong day to visit High Town. All this ... glee. Tomfoolery. Raucousness. It's not that he doesn't want to be happy, or others to be happy, but it's the method. However, he agreed to come along with Rung, at least to steer him away from potholes or overly gregarious parties. He found the first mask he could and stuck it on so no one would bother him about it.

The only wares he's been remotely interested in are related to the death-oriented cult, or religion, or whatever it is that some practice in here. The idea of the sparks being reborn from the dead, now that is engaging. But these baubles seem cheap, inauthentic. "Bah. I'd like to find some real artifacts, not these imitations," he mumbles, maybe to Rung.

Rung glances up at Conduit, offering him a small smile. Maybe he can help the mech to enjoy his time here. He seems somewhat gloomy. "Well, I suppose we will just have to keep our eyes out then." He squints towards a shop.. really that looks like just as much of a blur of color as everything else but could have something interesting... maybe? "Why don't we try looking over there?"

It's hard to know where to start. No guide for this. Skystalker starts walking, his boots stepping carefully as he moves down the avenue, avoiding narrow collisions with a note of grace. Being so used to seeing Rung, it is not difficult to spot him in the crowd, especially when it splits and he recognizes the telltale concentration that comes with the doc's squinting. The other mech he doesn't know, but it is a big ship, swelling with colonists every time. Making his way over, the starfighter lifts a hand so that he might notice the movement. "Rung!" Hey look, someone that doesn't do that thing when they mess up his name! Maybe Skystalker didn't get the memo.

Conduit himself squints at the shop Rung points out. At least it's not right on the street, so perhaps it'll be slightly quieter. He's about to agree when Skystalker finds them. Since he knows Rung, he must be from the Lost Light as well. "Hello, I am --" he lifts up his mask with one hand to make a proper introduction, "I am Conduit."

Rung looks over at the sound of his name, though really he would have responded to anything even reflecting his name slightly. It is the voice and tall frame shape he recognizes. "Oh, Skystalker!" A smile is added to the squint, which starts to smooth out as the mech comes into his view better, "I wasn't aware you would be coming!"

The masklessness helps give him away too. He hasn't stopped to find one yet, though he has already seen some interesting ones. Skystalker's optics examine Conduit's before he lifts it to introduce himself. Before he has a chance to do the same, Rung pretty much does it for him. Conduit earns a smile, "Skystalker. You must be a recent addition?" He parrots and comments with a nod of his head, then reorienting on Rung. "I wasn't sure if I would, but it seemed too unique of an opportunity, in the end. I see you're engaging at the expense of your optics." Poor, squinty mech.

"Indeed." Conduit gives a short nod of the head and then, somewhat self-consciously, replaces his mask. Thinking that this conversation may take a few moments, the engineer looks around and finds a vendor selling shots of ... well, whatever it is, Conduit purchases three of them. He immediately downs his, such is his need within the din of the festival, and returns to Rung and Skystalker with the other two. If they don't want them, Conduit will be happy to dispose of them.

Rung gives a chuckle at Skystalker's comment, optics bright. It must be incredibly strange or nice to see him not just without his glasses but not about to return them to his face anytime soon. "Sadly the festivities don't cater well to the optically challenged. It is nearly impossible to find a mask that can fit over a pair of glasses." They have masks for visors, but none to go over glasses. Go figure! Rung looks surprised as Conduit returns with.. well something but gives a smile of gratitude as he gently accepts it, "Oh, thank you Conduit. You didn't have to do this though, I wouldn't want you wasting your money on me."

A mech of few words, huh Conduit? Skystalker gives Rung a good-natured shrug of 'oh well' in response to Rung, looking up as Conduit returns with something to offer. "Oh-- thank you!" Skystalker's wingtips seem to perk as he accepts the drink, inspecting it for a moment. Will it kill him? Hopefully not. "I had heard that they have different specialties here." Figures, a colony with its own drinking culture. AFter deeming it safe, Skystalker pauses a moment to drink it.

"Not at all, Rung. I freely admit I am not the best company in this environment, so this should help both of us." Conduit hands off the shots with all due courtesy. He's not feeling much of an effect from it himself, but it's a small glass. Still, it has a pleasant, aromatic aftertaste.

Rung sips the drink, not sure what to expect, but is pleasantly surprised by the taste. "So this is what the drinks on this colony taste like, hm? A few of my patients said they were good, I will have to inform them they were correct." Rung squints around some more as they sip before pointing to the shop they had been heading to, "Would you like to continue on our way then? Sky stalker you are welcome to join us of course! Perhaps we can get you a mask as well." After all, its a part of the fun!

Skystalker's optics shutter a little as the shot goes down. "That's interesting." He's not sure what to think other than it tastes... different. "I would love to. I hadn't come with any intent in mind, just to see it all." It's better to hang with your kin, though, is it not? "I'll have to find one! Would make a great keepsake, I think." Colony souvenirs!

Conduit smiles (perhaps invisibly behind his mask) to hear that the others are interested in moving to the shop, set back a little on a corner of the street. A small mosaiced plaza sits in front of it, and while revelers wander across it, not many enter the shop.

As hoped for, at least by Conduit, the shop interior is markedly peaceful. Hanging decorations of all shapes and sizes adorn the windows, forming a kind of curtain. Tables scattered here and there hold the shop's wares: predominantly stones of metal and mineral, many polished, and some rough, along with geodes and other rocky artifacts. Some of the material has been fashioned into useful items like plates, cups, dishes, or into tchotchkes like small sculptures and toys. A squat femme sits in a stool behind a counter at the back, staring out one of the doorways.

The second Rung enters the shop he is fascinated by the wares on display- the ones he can see. A smile is sent to the femme in the back as he enters only to lean closer to one shelf featuring geodes. They are beautiful in a wide array of colors and sizes. Obviously he doesn't touch, that would be bad manners, but his optics do flick from object to object as he goes.

Skystalker looks down under the arches of his boots at the tiled designs as they head towards the shopfront, and he stays close by virtue of knowing Rung's frame well enough to stick near out of the corner of his optic.

As they file quietly into the shop, Beachcomber and his lessons immediately come to mind, and Sky gives the shopkeeper a polite lift of his hand in greeting before looking around. "Oh, but aren't these charming?" He gravitates to some of the small sculpted figurines, bending at the waist to get a better look.

"Quite nice," Conduit responds. He himself is drawn to a display of rough crystals. He is no geologist but he can try to assess exactly what minerals they are made from. They are consistent with those found in asteroid mining; given the nature of the system, this is hardly surprising. Perhaps there is something rare to be found.

The shopkeeper glances at the newcomers and gives them a flash of a smile before returning to her staring. "Welcome," she says in a voice grainier than any of the rocks on display.

Rung approaches Conduit from behind, glancing around the mech's arm to see what he is looking at. "Do you see anything that has caught your interest?" Hm, rough crystals. Rung personally likes the more polished types but there is something to say about the charm of roughly cut gems.

Skystalker's eyes are hard to follow, until he sees one particular sculpt that draws his fingers to the edge of it. He is gentle when he picks it up to look closer, treating it as the piece of art it is as he turns it over. It seems to echo the shape of a mech, with inlaid eyes and several arms holding carved orbs the shades of newborn sparks. There are some others of similar make, in different sizes, each unique. "Is this the titan?" His question is a hush, half to himself.

Conduit has found something, in fact: a very pure, nearly black crystal. He carefully picks it up. "Yes. Black tourmaline. It is quite exquisite." And useful for certain rites that Conduit wishes to perform, but he leaves that out.

The shopkeeper has good audio receptors. "The Roosa. She changes constantly, but that be a popular way to imagine him."

Rung is about to comment on how the crystal is very nice looking when Skystalker catches his attention. The titan? Giving a glance to Conduit, Rung walks over to Skystalker and looks at the figure he has been examining. It is beautiful. And there are so many variants of the titan, "Is it true that 'Roosa' shifts their form constantly?" The idea of such a being is a strange but awe inspiring one. The shifting planes below is only evidence of that.

"The Roosa." Skystalker confirms. A non-conforming, ever-changing titan. It's no wonder that the people here are so colorful and free. No surprise that the titan embraces that and gives back. He only heard about the fight for the spark field, but it sounded striking. As Rung moves nearer, Sky holds the sculpture so that he can see it better. "I am personally more impressed by the sparks. But I can see how the people here have so many forms..."

Conduit quietly brings his find to the counter for purchase. As the shopkeeper wraps the crystal, she explains. "Aye, all the time. Maybe never the same twice. So we, its children, are blessed with many forms. The sparks she gives are like him." Her rotating pronoun use may sound confusing, but not to her. She bags the wrapped crystal and slips a card in along with it.

Rung gazes down at the statues in wonder for a minute longer before stepping back. "Such an amazing ability..." Standing beside Conduit he waits for Skystalker to make his purchase or not. Rung didn't see anything specific that interested him enough to purchase so as he waits he glances out the door to see if he can spot what else is around.

Skystalker smiles gently when the keep describes things a little further. This might be his favorite titan thus far-- don't tell Metroplex! There's so much that they are thankful for, with The Roosa. The feeling that flickers there is enough to have him approach the counter with the small statue in hand to purchase it. "You have excellent craftsmanship, my friend."

Conduit pays and accepts the bag with a quiet thanks. "I will be returning to the ship, especially now that Rung has another ... guide." There's a smirk. It's not that bad here after all. "It was a pleasure meeting you, Skystalker." A refined mech indeed. He nods to the both of them and heads back, reluctantly, into the party outside.

"Ah, 'tis not my handiwork, but I'll pass along yer regards." She wraps the statuette and bags it, then hands it over. "Shoov be gentle on ya."

Rung gives a thank you to the femme and a goodbye to Conduit. He wishes that the mech could have stayed longer, there is still so much to see. "What do you say, Skystalker, wish to continue our sightseeing with an old mech?" By now it seems that music and dancing has picked up in the town square, mechs and femmes all grabbing partners and dancing their worries away.

As they make their purchases and take leave of the shop with a pleasant mood in tow, Skystalker looks up and down the busy street with a new sparkle in his optics. All of them are the children of the titan, and look at them-- even with the threats back and forth, they are happy now.

"Of course." Skystalker doesn't hesitate to answer positively when Rung asks him if he wants to stick close. "There's so much to see. And I definitely need a mask of my own."


Rung looks around the area before spotting a nearby stand selling, yes, masks. "One moment!" Rung jogs over to the stand and, after several minutes of thinking, selects a mask he thinks will look good on the taller mech. Quickly making his purchase from the seller the therapist walks back to Skystalker, "Try this one, I think it would look rather fetching on you!" And as a friendly gift from the therapist to him!

Skystalker grins rather wide when Rung sets upon the task of finding him a mask, and in a show of support he angles near to wait, but with his side turned so that the surprise isn't ruined. And when he turns to see it, he's awfully glad for that; amber eyes brighten at Rung's choice, though he feels himself becoming just a tad self-aware when the word 'fetching' is used. It is true, though-- the mask is a deep purple, with an intricate overlay of gold metal and pearly detailing that wraps partially over the face. "Wow, Rung, it's lovely--" Skystalker can't help a tiny bit of wonder in his voice. And as he tries it on, it is a perfect fit.

<FS3> Rung rolls Secret Pockets: Good Success. (2 3 7 8 3 1 1 7)

Rung beams as Skystalker seems to approve of his choice. Grin only growing wider as the other tries it on, Rung starts digging around in his compartments. He thought he had... Aha! With a victorious glint in his optics, Rung pulls out a small mirror from one of his shin compartments. He knew he had one somewhere! He holds it up so Skystalker can see his own reflection.

Skystalker seems equally charmed by the fact that Rung produces a mirror from a hidden compartment. It makes him wonder how many other ones there are. He murmurs a thank you as he takes up the mirror to look at the mask on his face. The mask lines up very nicely with the rest of his face, and Skystalker glances down with an approving look. "I think you're right. It looks right at home, hm?"

"That it does!" Rung takes back the mirror once Skystalker has finished with it then looks around again, "Would you like to go see what is happening with that activity over that way?" Rung can see a lot of motion closer to the square but can't quite make out what it is.

The dancing is now in full swing, with mechs and femmes laughing as the music plays energetically.

Skystalker makes sure that the mask is secure before he passes Rung's mirror back. It gives him a regal air, especially now when his mood is high and so is his posture, and chin. "It looks like some sort of group dance-- the music is very good too." He beckons Rung along as he agrees to go over, and they can get a better look at everything.

Rung allows himself to be lead through the crowd, knowing full well he will probably get lost in the crowd if he wasn't following in the tall avian's wake. "The music is very good, different from what you hear nowadays."

Just as they reach the edge of the group, a pink and white femme takes obvious notice of Skystalker. A smooth step has her in front of him, staring up into his masked face through her own black and red one. "Care ta dance, friend?" Her sparkling red eyes convey no ill will, only friendly interest in dancing with the taller Cybertronian.

It is unusual for someone to be brave enough to act first around him, especially on the Lost Light. Her boldness is a little refreshing, actually. Sky gives a brief glance to Rung, before offering his hand for hers, charming smile and all. He hates to abandon the other mech, but he'll be safe, surely. "I'd love to. Pardon me if I misstep, it's been a while?"

On Rung's left there's a bit of a bustle, as a femme around his height sidles closer and bumps him with a friendly arm, and a bit of a wandering hand at his elbow. She's mostly an orange much like his, built with a tiny waist and round limbs, her hands small and yellow optics large. "Heya handsome! Wanna have a go?" She is also very forward.

Rung gives Skystalker an encouraging smile as the pink femme walks up to him. He is perfectly fine with being left alone, Skystalker should have all the fun possible. He is a bit surprised when his elbow is gripped, however. She takes him by surprise and his optics widen for a second before belatedly saying, "Oh uh- I suppose I could dance." He.... was not expecting anyone to want to dance with him.

The pink femme offers up a hand for Skystalker and when it is taken, she steps back into the open dancing area with a tug to bring him with her. With a sway of thin hips her body suddenly seems to stretch, winding with unnatural ease, as a second then third and fourth pair of arms split out of her sides and back. Whatever one of her alternate forms is, it is very strange. "Name's SpringLock. You?"

Skystalker's hands know exactly where to go, and his feet follow along gracefully as Springlock leads him out. His browline arches as her arms unwind from her frame, and his smile crooks further up along his expression. "Skystalker." Though he has no extra limbs to offer, his wingtips fan out, unfolding just so, and his biolights flush a purple to match the shades of his mask. "You've got quite a few hands, are you sure about where you want to put them?" It's much, much easier to actively flirt with strangers. You likely don't see much of them again.

Meanwhile, Rung's new femme friend lets out a high-spirited giggle. "I'm Lumina! Let's daaa~nce!" Her strong frame moves with a jolly step as she leans in to pick Rung up around the waist and twirl him out to dance.

Rung lets out an oof as he is forcefully grabbed around the waist. He was not expecting this either! Gripping his mask in one hand to prevent it from flying off, all Rung can do is grip the femme's shoulder and hang on! "R-rung! It is nice to make your acquaintance." Or it would be if the place would stop spinning!

Springlock doesn't seem to have any problem finding places to place her eight hands. While one grips Skystalker’s hand as is proper, the other of the same set on his shoulder, the second set settles to his forearms, the third his waist, and the fourth swaying in the air in time to her own waist. "This isn't my first dance, ya know. Ya one of those Cybertronians, are ya not?"

Skystalker subconsciously keeps track of those many hands, noting his partner's poise as they move. "I am. Unfortunately I am not as blessed when it comes to shapes to choose from... but I manage with only two hands well enough." Skystalker looks up into the stars towards where the Lost Light twinkles, then back with a smile. " Mind if I ask, what do you think of us?"

Lumina giggles again, and she sets Rung down in the bustle of the dance square, her smile taking up a good chunk of her features as she puts her small hands on him again, though this time he stays very grounded. "Same here, darlin'! Lemme show you how we do things down here.” One of those big eyes on that heart shaped face gives a wink.

Rung stumbles slightly when he is dropped onto the ground once again. Lumina certainly is strong for her size. Straightening his mask again, Rung belatedly puts a tentative hand on the energetic femme's shoulder, the other to her waist as is proper dance form. "I see- Do um do you believe your dances vary greatly from our own?" He is still sort of being dragged around.

It is a moment before Springlock replies, looking up at the Lost Light as well with half lidded optics in thought, "I think it's strange many of ya are trapped with only one alt mode. Seems so... restricted. Don' know what I would do with only one set of hands!" When she looks back down at him, her eyes are sparkling with only good cheer and kind intentions, "but the very fact ya came from so far away is amazing and yer people helped us take down Simoon! Any mechs who help save the new sparks from those pirates and kick their afts that hard are alrigh' in my books."

Lumina is such a happy little thing that she doesn't really notice her own strength, or her level of mechhandling. She's probably had quite a few drinks. "Maybe! Beyond my ken, but I'd love'ta find out." She proceeds to lead him around the square with that same energy. It's fundamentally the same, except with more footwork.

Skystalker is attentive when Springlock answers him, and his laugh at her mention of not knowing what to do with so few hands is an honest ones. It's a mutual feeling. "I'm glad we've made a good impression here. Sometimes things don't quite go right for us, despite all of our good intent." One of his browlines arches a little when chuckles this out. It's the truth. They dance a turn more, and Skystalker is willing to go at least until the end of the current piece of music.

Rung lets himself be dragged around, attempting to keep up as best he can as the song comes to an end. His mask is once again askew. "That was rather fun," He offers her a weak smile, stepping back and using the end of the song as an excuse to get out of another dance, "but I should probably return to the Lost Light, I .. have patients waiting to see me." Ok it's not an outright lie, he does have patients to see... only in a few hours.

The music slows to a stop and Springlock gracefully twists in a backbend, nearly a self dip. Once straightened she gives Skystalker a grin and spins away a few feet.

Skystalker moves along with Springlock, easily coaxed into dipping her for that extra special effect. She's a charmer too, especially as she moves away, leaving him with his own two hands lingering in the air, and a smile on his lips.

"Patients? Ooh, you're a doctor?" Lumina's hands come together and her eyes sparkle. "You could treat me too, ya know--" She edges forward with a more personal smile-- only to be thwarted by the appearance of Skystalker when he moves in to sling an arm around Rung's shoulders and tug him in alongside, closer than Skystalker ought to be. But it looks like he has a plan-- "Did you have fun? Are you ready to head back?" They don't have to-- but it provides a deterrent to Lumina's advances as her face falls a bit.

Springlock gives a half curtsey bow to Skystalker as the dance fully concludes and says a goodbye before disappearing into the crowd, potentially off to find another partner as Skystalker makes his way to Rung.

Rung himself jumps slightly as an arm falls across his shoulders and is about to pull away- Oh! Its Skystalker. Relief washes through the mech just before a wave of sly mischief. Rung wraps an arm around Skystalker's waist, feigning a closer relationship than they really have, and turns back to look at Lumina, "Thank you for the dance, but I believe it is time we headed back. I hope to see you again." Once far enough away, and very much out of sight, Rung releases Skystalker with a grateful smile. "Thank you for the rescue. I didn't know how I would slip away on my own." Despite the relief a smile is still on his lips, overall it has been a very pleasant evening.

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