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2016-19-15 Wizards, Warlocks, and Warriors

From Transformers: Lost and Found

2016-19-15 Wizards, Warlocks, and Warriors
Date 2016/09/15
Location Lost Light: Recreation - Visages
Participants Mirage, Torque, Whisper, Mercy, Conduit, Red Alert, Rung, Starstruck, Bitstream, Finetune, Brainstorm, Folly, Beachcomber
Scene GM Mirage
Summary Mirage hosts a strange night of LARPing.

The chairs and tables have been cleared from the room, leaving plenty of empty space for mecha to play out their scenes. In order to add to the illusion Mirage has crafted holograms placed in three corners of the room to depict different scenes. One displays an open meadow with sloping hills, another the entrance to a castle, and the final a cave with a slumbering dragon in its depths. The host, Mirage, has placed himself at a control panel by the grand staircase that allows him to manage the holoforms; with the push of a button, the scene can perform a variety of pre-programmed actions. For example, as the scout fiddles with the control board in he causes the dragon's eyes to open.

Far across the room, the space around the bar has been transformed in a more tangible sense. A few of the coffee tables and chairs have been pushed there to create more sitting room. "Visages" usually fancy glasses have been replaced with tankards, and Mirage has even gone so far to cover the bar's neon sign with a faux-wooden one that reads 'The Blue Fin Tavern.' A rack of costumes, provided for mecha without their own, is discretely placed behind the bar. The bartender for the night, hired to help with the festivities, is dressed in a bar wench's outfit. He calls out to Mirage, "Are we opening the doors yet?"

Mirage looks over with a frown, shaking his helm at Tetroxide. The mecha is a last minute recruit, his other bartender having called in sick. Tetroxide owes him a favor after nearly burning them all alive, after all, but he hopes the rocket scientist doesn't make a mess of this night, too. "More in character. Remember, this is performance art."

Tetroxide flushes in embarrassment and nods, leaning over the bar in a perfect imitation of a stereotypical bar wench. "Like this?" he asks. Mirage is taken aback at how good he is at it. "... Perfect. Now, I believe we're ready to let in our guests."

Folly seems to aimlessly enter the whole Visages/Blue Fin Tavern. The strange little eneraetherologican had actually been missing for six sweeps, and just suddenly reappeared today without a word. Apparently she got the word about costumes, for she's got paint on half of her face, blinding one of her optics, and a few makeshift weapons amit her 'dress' like frame. She apprehensively, and perhaps a bit timidly, adjusts what must be some sort of shield on her arm as she enters the bar without a word. After a few moments, she holds out her free hand where a small starglobe hovers in her hand, telling indecipherable tidbits of life to the scientist. "

Mercy has very few chances to wear the rediculously flouncy, beribboned and laced dress that she'd been gifted by some anonymous person eons ago (hey, at least she left the lace teddy at home). In fact, the last time, a certain Decepticon stepped on her flounces and made her fall down - but this time she won't be the only one in clothes, right? Right! She bounces in, only missing a tiara to be a fairytale princess, and beaming her eagerness at the possibilty to LARP...whatever that is.

Although Whisper does arrive at the bar in a way that is punctual to when the event was supposed to begin, she is wholly without either costume or any true notion of what the activity is that she is cautiously admitting herself willing to partake. She has, via research and/or questioning, determined that it is a take on some kind of human thing, and this has left her mystified. But having explored the video games in the common lounge on and off since her arrival aboard the ship, it is clear that this is the next logical step. She says nothing as she enters and looks around, but then again, she often doesn't.

Rung wasnt quite sure what to expect when Starstruck invited him to this strange event. Whatever he might have expected this.. certainly wasn't it. Looking around at those dressed in strange and colorful outfits and the transformation of Visage's, the therapist suddenly feels very underdressed as he didn't bring anything with him. Antenna lilting slightly with nervous energy, he begins to search through the crowd for the larger mech. He must know whats happening!

Conduit didn't get the memo, so he arrives only with the intent of visiting a watering hole that isn't the contained chaos of Swerve's. That means no costume. He's been eyeing those that others are wearing curiously, and as he enters Visages he begins to suspect that something strange is going on. He espies Whisper, another Decepticon without adornment, and approaches her, looking around cautiously. "What is going on here?" It's intoned rhetorically, as he doesn't expect it can be explained.

Starstruck is so pumped for this. LARPing, at Mirage's sweet new lounge! He hasn't had the chance to check out Visages yet, and so he came a little early to get a good look around before the place started filling up. And it looks fucking great, which he says to Mirage in passing as he walks around the room. He's got a tankard already in his hand, which fits with his outfit perfectly - a full on fantasy-inspired bard costume, complete with his saxophone strapped around his chest and a fake sword at his hip. This is the shit he lives for.

Since bots started showing up, though, Star's been looking for a particular therapist, and his faceplates split in a grin when he spots Rung enter. "Hey, Rung!" He weaves his way over, taking a hearty sip from his tankard as he does. "You made it! C'mon, we gotta get you a costume."

Whisper cants her head to return Conduit's look, her wingspan dipping with a faint shiver as she turns the yellow gleam of her visor aside. She parts her lips like she is going to break her silence, and then closes her mouth again with a kind of facial shrug. She turns over her hands, showing her open palms to Conduit. Even if she really understood it she might not know how to explain!

Upon hearing about this event, Brainstorm has had a very bright idea. He's quite eager to show it off too, so much that he's glowing as he approaches the doors. Litterally. The long, flowing cloak he's donned is characteristically dark, but the edges gleam and glow a vicious red. Even the biolights of his shoulder wings have a place, worked in to an over-extravagtant raised collar that conceals the rest of the wings. For added effect, the navigation lights at their tips flicker periodically.

But that's just the begining. Surely you wouldn't expec the ship's genius to walk in in nothing but a cloth prop! In one hand, he carries a long staff, at the tip of which, grasped by a quartet of claws, is a luminous spehere, glowing and swirling with red lights and smoke. In his other, is a book. Or, at least, it looks like one from the outside.

There's a mischevious glint in his optics as he looks aroudnd the room "Looks like this is going to be quite the party! Hey Mercy!" recognising the dress, he tilts his head in greeting " Glad you took my advice!"

Seeing mecha arrive, Mirage gets to his pedes and nods to each customer in turn. "We will begin the event in a moment," he calls out to the crowd. "While we wait for the rest to arrive, you can make yourself at home over at the ba- tavern. Being in character is not required there; although, it is not discouraged."

To compliment what Mirage says, Tetroxide waves from the bar and gives the crowd a goofy smile. A moment later he pauses. "Oh, right. In character," he remarks. "... Is there anything I can get you boys?" he asks, slipping into character as best he can. The look he throws Mirage screams, 'Am I doing it right?' Mirage has to resist the urge to rub his nasal bridge.

Spotting the underdressed Whisper, Mercy seems to have the same idea as Starstruck does for Rung. "Come on, you need a costume!" she chirps at Whisper, holding back from reaching out to take Whisper's hand. She motions to Conduit as well. "Look...there's so many choices!"

One could say that Bitstream... Took interest in the whole 'LARP' thing. One might go as far as to think he nailed up a calender and marked the date with an excessively red marker. So, as soon as the Blue Fin Tavern (So cool!), he's there with cloak and the hood drawn over his helm. Hotlink helped him make this- magnets in the hem to help keep it ominiously closed and a shiny stone at the lapel. Slits along the *ahem* costume he certainly doesn't wear in his offtime allow his wings free movement behind him as he descends the staircase. The sublte glow of his visor and optics brighten as he looks around.

HOLOGRAMS! Now this is his jam. Wonder if he can hack into the remote signals of if this is all hardlined. How cool to manipulate the images. As a sorcerer, doing stuff like that is fun and- oh wait is that... The teal Seeker slips a servo out of his own cloak and waves to Brainstorm. "Nice outfit," he tells his fellow teal. They had a bonding moment. They're friends. "Socerer or Wizard?" he asks casually, wings panelling and arm slipping back within the confines of his cloak. Beachcomber has arrived.

Rung is quick to spot, or more accurately hear, Starstruck across the room and actually nearly trips when he sees the mech's getup. Starstruck was clearly prepared for this event. Approaching the mech, he glances around once again before speaking, "Hello Starstruck. I am not quite sure what is going on, but I am clearly underdressed." His head tilts to the side at the mention of getting him a costume, "Are there any available?"

Folly has taken to staring at the dragon hologram with a quiet desperation. Ten minutes have gone by as she's just stood there and locked eyes with it. Her oil pressure rises as she finds herself lost in its red optics, as the creature revels in its ancient history of carnage...of madness. Her own unsynchronized eyes struggle to focus as she finds herself further lost in the void, lost in its gaze. The dragon....the Dragon......

After two more minutes, she drops the makeshift toy knife she had brought with her, clanking to the ground.
Her fuel pump races...
And before her the Dragon shifts, and to her it speaks.

<EVERYONE SHALL BURN> It speaks in its honeyed hiss, a chuckle on its lips, its threat conveyed knowingly to the paralyzed eneraetherologican

Conduit echoes Whisper's silence, so to speak (or not), with a brow raise and slight head roll of his own. Understood. He looks down, again curiously, at Mercy in her dress while he digests Mirage's announcement. "In character ... this is some sort of acting activity," he states to no one in particular. The nurse/actually-a-doctor is beckoning, so he moves to follow her, at least to see what this is all about. As he does, he catches sight of a Seeker, obscured with a cloak, and his optics narrow. That may be the one he himself seeks.

"It's called LARPing. Live action role-playing," Starstruck explains, setting a servo on Rung's shoulder and steering him over to the racks of costumes Mirage has so kindly provided. "It's a human thing. You pretend to be magic users or warriors or whatever and you fight monsters and go on epic quests! It's pretty neat." As he talks, he sets his tankard down on the nearest surface and starts rummaging through the clothing to find the right outfit for Rung. "Yeah, looks like Mirage set out a whole bunch of stuff for us. He really went above and beyond preparing for this event!

One would think Torque would be taking the healer route with her 'character' this evening. Maybe a simple staff and some sort of dress.

Obviously you don't know Torque.

"Hail, fellow fighters!" A voice booms from the large silouhette at the top of the grand staircase, the light glinting off shiny, polished silver armor that rattles slightly from chainmail underneath as they decend the staircase, a large warhammer that looks a little too real slung over a shoulder. Once they're a bit closer it's easier to see the bit of art on the chestplate of the suit. It's a unicorn stylized as a medieval coat of arms, though the colors look supiciously like a certain host's holoavatar...

"Sup guys." An armored thumb pushes back the helmet's faceplate to reveal Torque, beaming as usual. "You all look so cool!" Says the femme that likely stayed up all night crafting armor.

Whisper looks blank. Her visor sweeps over Starstruck and Brainstorm in their brilliant respective enthusiasm. Her gaze falls across Mercy, bedecked in her silks and ribbons -- so to speak. She looks toward Conduit, and then over her shoulder toward the door like she is spending a moment contemplating her life choices and what has brought her to this moment. She says, "Costume," in a tone of neutral bafflement. She offers no resistance to the smaller Autobot's attempt to haul her towards the options, though.

<FS3> Mirage rolls Invisibility: Great Success. (5 4 6 7 7 2 3 6 8 8 6 1) <FS3> Brainstorm rolls Reaction+reaction: Success. (3 2 6 7)

Perhaps it was a sense of obligation that drove him, or perhaps he just intended to be nicer around the former Autobot scout, but for whatever reason Red Alert finds himself wandering into the bar during a most peculiar event. His optics dart around the room nervously, but he spots a familiar face in Rung over by the costume racks, and so the urge to just walk straight out again leaves him. He wanders up to where Rung and Starstruck are browsing through costumes, and offers a slightly nervous laugh.

"Um, some kind of costume party happening tonight?"

Brainstorm doesn't get a response from Mercy, but oh well. It's getting rather noisy, who can blame her? Instead, he turns his attention to the approaching Seeker, returning his wave with a nod, an slimmer in his look, and then "You dare question who I am?!" in an imitation of a booming voice. The effect is broken when, after an "I am the great --" he pauses, and then leans in to Bitstream "I haven't actually figured out a name yet" before resuming his previous tone "Bringer of storms!" that effect is ruined by the amused look he gives, but the next effect might make up for that. The inventor taps his staff against the floor. The crustal turns a dark blue, marked by light zigzags, and the tool emits a low rumble. Brainstorm himself couples it with a flash of his strobe lights. Bitstream gets a cheerful, expectant look. "What do you think?"

While the guests settle in, Mirage is busy messing with the control panel in order to make the last checks. Just as Torque enters the room, though, Mirage pauses. His optics immediately lock on the medic's coat of arms, and before he knows what is happening his faceplates are flushing with embarrasment. He begins sinking down, trying to hide behind the control panel, and accidentally jostles a button that causes the dragon to roar at Folly in the process.

Out of instinct, Mirage fades from view in the face of the whole fiasco. Despite his sudden disappearance, though, the scout's voice calls out through the lounge once more. "I apologize. I was doing final checks, and did not mean to startle anyone. However, I am glad to announce that we will beginning in a moment. If you would make your final preparations..." It is much easier to focus on work than his embarrasment (and a little bit of flattery).

This is way more fun than the first time Mercy met and spent time with Whisper! "You can be anything you want. A prince or princess, a knight, a wizard...what do you want to be?" She pauses and looks back as she hears the greeting from the top fo the staircase, and she offers a quick wave of greeting before she goes back to the duo who first got her attention. She starts pulling out options. "See? Wat do you want to be?"

Rung lets himself be dragged back to the costumes, looking at the rack as Starstruck helps him don an appropriate costume. It seems to be automatically decided that the psychiatrist would be deemed a priest- ironically what Viviqueen formerly referred to him as- and outfitting him with a robe and staff. Unfortunately for him, the only appropriate vestments seems to be designed for a larger mech. The result is sleeves having to be rolled up and a good chunk of the fabric dragging across the floor. Amazingly the effect isn't overall disastrous, however, it actually has a somewhat mystic tone when combined with how the hood falls over Rung's face... until he nearly runs into objects from having his sight obscured or fiddling with the cloth to make it stop catching on things.

It is this movement Rung makes as Red Alert approaches, blowing out a puff of air to move the fabric from his face, "Good evening Red Alert. I didn't expect to see you here! Starstruck invited me to this ... 'larping' event."
<>

The dragon looms in closer to Folly, frozen in her tracks. <<YOUR HEROES...YOUR PRECIOUS HEROES ARE BUT SCRAPLETS TO BE CAST ASIDE AND DISMEMBERED! MY WILL IS THAT OF THE AGES, I...>>

And then someone passes between her and the Dragon hologram. She refreshes her optics, blinking, looks away, then considers the situation she just discovered. "The creature is unkind." She says to nobody in particular. Folly ambles over to another part of the tavern, closer to the meadow. Her optics open a bit wider. This scene was much kinder, much nicer. Look at the little illusory petkrats chirping as they flutter about. She stands within the hologram, letting the petkrats flutter over her. Three of them land on one of her arms, which she raises up to examine.
<I AM THE WILL OF CORRUPTION, OF DESPAIR, AND ALL THAT LIVE SHALL KNOW SORROW.>
It was going to be a long night for Folly.

And in the corner, keeping the ficus company, is what looks like a pile of leaves and twigs. With Mirage for a roommate, he couldn't very well <i>not make an appearance - or, something of an appearance as the case may be, if people found him. His blue armor had apparently been painted green for the event, and for hiding under the thick cloak of foliage where he sat observing the others. The leaves range from bright green to dark emeralds to browns and reds, while a particularly scraggly pair of twigs jut upward from the sides of his head like horns. With Fantasia's fronds pulled to rest on top of his head, he's still not exactly Mirage levels of camouflage but it'll do.

Mostly, he's just here to watch the crew. Their enthusiasm is charming, for sure, and he's glad to see such an excited turnout to Mirage's event, and hopes Mirage is glad that so many showed interest for his event. Beachcomber likes to see Mirage happy.

Starstruck quickly homes in on the perfect outfit, and yeah so it might be a few sizes too big, but hey, it still looks great! "Awesome! I knew this'd be the right fit for you," he croons, antennae vibrating and grin at full wattage. He can't help but laugh at the way the hood obscures Rung's optics, and gives the back of it a little tug to see if it'll settle farther back on the psychiatrist's helm so that Starstruck doesn't have to lead him around everywhere because he can't see. Star glances over as another mech joins them, and reins back the smile toward something more friendly and less blinding.

"Oh, hey, Red Alert! How's it going? You here to play too?" Starstruck is already searching for another costume, glancing between the rack and Red Alert, trying to size him up and figure out the best one. He's read Red Alert's file, obviously, he can make something work...

"So you're a weathermech?" Torque tromps up behind her roomie, Brainstorm, and nudges him playfully with an elbow as she chuckles. "Nice effects, though." She twirls her warhammer, which upon very close inspection is just foam and cardboard painted really well. "What're you supposed to be, Bits?" She eyes the seeker, wondering what's with the fascination with capes.

Bitstream takes a step back, wings flaring at the booming voice... But a grin could be seen just barely in the recesses of his hood. He snickers at the revelation and tilts his head to show that there's no judgement for lack of names. Primus, he's not the only one with special effects for tonight it seems! Exciting! "I believe the Storm Bringer is gonna burn out my optics!" He laughs and then he applauds from within his cloak.

"Impressive though- I'm impressed. That's not all your tricks though, right?" Bitstream looks down at the book in his fellow flyer's hand. Yeah, hopefully not. His helm jerks, wings flicking. "Hey, its not... It's not Bits." Loathe that name. "I... I am a traveller. I have no need for mundane things such as this Storm Bringer's trinkets and spell book. I weave my magic with words like a tapestry- the arcane poetry my art. I am a sorcerer, fine warrior." Haha, he loves this... And its not a cape! It's a cloak. Look how mysterious it makes him.

"A...larping event?" Red Alert repeats dubiously. He's not really sure what that is. He fears he's gotten himself into something rather strange again, but it would actually draw more attention to himself to cross the room again and exit than to just put on a silly costume and play along. "As long as no one's recording this," he mumbles as he helps Starstruck choose some adornments for him. He fishes a large hat out of the costumes and a pair of pointy finials which magnetize to the side of his helm. Some kind of open-fronted skirting gets shuffled up around his waist, and an attachment goes over his arm that looks like a strange weapon of some sort. "Does this look alright?" He asks nervously, but it seems like the event is already about to begin, so it will have to do for now.

"What?" Brainstorm turns a baffled look towards his approaching roommate. A weathermech? Sure, he may occasionally give erm, 'misinformation, but he look like he belongs infront of weather map? "No, he got it right" he nods at Bitstream "I'm a sorcerer. Made all the props myself. This isn't even half of what it can do!" he holds out the staff, before adding "I also do enchantet weapons" he flicks the edge of his robe to the side, like a back alley merchant, to reveal a row of sword...hilts, hung on the inside. The lack of blades doesn't seem to disturb him, and his expression is as cheerful as ever "Nice costume yourself!"

Conduit is about to say that he is what he wants to be, but quickly understands this is a metaphorical thing. And not really his jam. But, he is trying to assimilate to this crew he's found himself with, so, he takes a moment to search through the costumes for something acceptable. Soon he finds it: a robe, black with delicate yellow ribbing giving it the appearance of filigree, and pauldrons that swoop upward into pointed curves. He wordlessly wraps it around himself, clasping it in the front, and then takes up a similarly dark, twisted staff topped with a transparent orb. He turns towards Mercy and gently plants the staff onto the deck, as if to say, "Acceptable?"

As a sign that the actual event is about to begin, the lights in the room dim minutely. In the darkness the various holograms begin to take on a life of their own. The one that draws the most attention is the scene of the castle. A mob of people begin to filter into view beneath a window with a small balcony. The crowd is speaking in raised voices, pointing at the window and waving fists in a display of anger. Fading back into view, Mirage leans towards a mic and speaks in an overly dramatic voice, "It is the 12th year in the reign of King Edward, and the land is plagued by a terrible dragon. The people are restless, and sensing their unease the King has decided to give a speech to his people. Restless adventurers from all over the kingdom are gathering to hear what he has to say," he says.

"If any interested adventurers would make their way towards the crowd."

Whisper looks around the various costume options with a distinctly at sea look on her face. She goes, "I don't know," as Mercy goes through various costume pieces. She says: "What should I be?" Rung smile at Red Alert, chuckling at the costume he chooses, "Don't worry, I know about as much of what is going on as you do and I am confident no one will be recording this event." He looks up as the lights dim and watches in wonder as the holographic scene is narrated by Mirage. Quickly connecting what is happening, a look of understanding crosses over his face, "Oh, it is like we are acting out a fantasy novel!" Looking to Starstruck, Rung holds his staff close to his chassis as he waits for the other to decide what they should do. Clearly Rung is just going to go along with whatever Starstruck wants to do since he seems far more knowledgeable on the whole thing.

"A wizard!" Mercy actually claps her hands together when Conduit pulls out his choice of costumes. Her optics are bright, and she seems genuinely enthoused by it. When Whisper asks what she should be, Mercy hrms softly and paws through the costumes before pulling out a simple dark red tunic and a set of chainmail, along with a tabbard with a coat of arms emblazoned across the front. "You are strong, and amazing, and i think you make a perfect Knight..ess. Knightess!" As the lights dim, she looks over to Mirage. "Ohhhh."

Starstruck steps back, squinting one optic and holding up a thumb as he looks Red Alert over. "It looks fucking phenomenal, dude!" is his assessment of Red Alert's outfit. Elf cleric. Nice. A bard, a cleric and a priest. They don't have a tank but whatever, maybe they can drag someone else into their little group. "Yeah, Raj put a lot of effort into this whole shebang but I don't think cameras were part of that." He stops speaking as the lights dim, turning his attention to the castle and the first scene. He nearly claps his servos with glee. It was starting!

"C'mon, guys, we gotta go help the kingdom get rid of this dragon!" Starstruck takes Rung's arm, just in case Rung still can't see very well, and gestures with his free servo for Red Alert to follow as he starts making his way over to where they're supposed to go.

Bitstream tilts his helm, wings canting as he looks at the sword hilts. Interesting... But melee isn't his strong suit. Holding things- messes up all the intricate spells he has to perform. "Oh, showtime, fellow sorcerer," he says as the lights dim. Still trying to get a feeling if that's wireless or hardline. Eh, maybe he shouldn't try hacking it... For now. He flashes Brainstorm a grin in the dark of his hood before heading towards the fake crowd at the castle. His thruster heels click-click and his cloak swishes but remains fully closed. Let's see what the King has to say!

"Hrm, acting..." Red Alert considers this, then with a sigh and a shrug of his shoulders, he relents. "I don't have any acting experience, but I suppose I can try." He steps forward as Starstruck motions them onward, and says in a voice pitched slightly higher than usual--whether out of nerves or on purpose--"I-I will help get rid of this dragon menace!" He ducks his helm in embarrassment but scuttles forward anyway, joining the gathering adventurers.

Brainstorm looks up when the announcement is made. Dragons, huh? Personally, he'd preffer to leave any dragon slaying to all the warriors, but that doesn't mean he can't take a look. Nodding to Bitstream, he drops his cloack, and moves after the 'adventurer', staff clacking against the floor, the spehere at its end retututning to the original foggy red glow.

Whisper fingers the chainmail uncertainly. She looks at Mercy with her head canted to one side, and then kind of scoops it up. It's clear immediately that she doesn't get it, because she puts the tunic on over her wing like an overlarge sleeve, and then kind of loops the tabard and mail around her hips. Oh well. She tried. She picks up a fake mace and waggles it, thwacking it experimentally against her own arm with a certain amount of awkward skepticism. Just for the record, she looks ridiculous.

Conduit does nod indulgingly to Mercy; at least she appreciates his taste. When the lights dim, his biolights instinctively brighten, creating an eerie violet glow from beneath the robe. He watches Whisper equip her gear and, well, she tried. He won't judge. But, he decides that he won't join the quest right this moment, instead sliding over to the ... "tavern". He actually did come for a drink originally. "Please get me," he pauses to look at Tetroxide, "well, whatever you are serving right now."

As the crowd swells, the sounds of the hologram grow to a crescendo. It is great for impact; although, it may be a little bit difficult on the audials. Just when it is on the verge of being unbearable a hush falls, heralding a coming change. From the darkness a richly dressed king steps onto the balcony. His voice booms out as he address the crowd, "People of the land of Kanth, I have gathered you here today to assure you in our time of crisis. The great dragon may raze and pillage without restraint, but I have gathered the best adventurers from distant lands to vanquish the beasts."

The King pauses, the holograms eyes seem to pierce the players with his urgent need. "For the adventurers who succeed in slaying the dragon, great riches and rewards await. Which of our brave adventurers is ready for the task?"

Tetroxide perks up, glad to finally have someone to serve. He was beginning to worry if he wasn't pretty enough in this dres- Wait, no he wasn't. Even though Conduit can't read his thoughts, the rocket scientist clears his vocoder as if he's been caught in a despicable act. He offers up Conduit a goofy smile. "Well, we've got mead, mead, and... mead," he answers.

With a thunk, he drops a tankard on the table. Some of the engex sloshes over the edge of the glass. Almost immediately, the rocket scientist can feel Mirage glaring at his back strut. He runs across the bar to get a cloth to clean it up. In character or not, apparently his boss won't abide a mess. "So... how does mead sound?"

Red Alert does NOT appreciate the change in volume. Even with both hands muffling his audial receptors he can hear the booming voice like it's being beamed straight into his processor. "Tell him if he wants the dragon slain he doesn't have to yell," he grumbles to Rung and Starstruck. Scoot. Scoot scoot. Gradually the leaf pile that is Beachcomber makes its way to hover at the back edges of the crowd gathering to listen to the king. Scoot. Scoot scoot. Staying along the walls, he hopes he'll blend in with the landscape - though, then again, leaf piles may or may not be permitted around a castle. He's never really seen one to say what the policy is on leafblowers.

This setup is so neat, Mirage really did do an awesome job. Starstruck will have to make sure he knows his work is appreciated after the party's over. Right now, he watches the scene unfold, fairly unconcerned at the noise level. He's blasted tunes at higher decibals than this. Red Alert's comment gets a chuckle, and when the king asks for volunteers, he steps forward, pulling Rung along with him. "We accept this quest, Your Majesty," he intones, all seriousness and in character. What a NERD.

Whisper makes her way onto the floor with the other players. She looks around them. She looks at Starstruck and Rung. Her gaze narrows in a shift of yellow light behind her shielding visor, but she says nothing.

Rung glances around the 'crowd' in interest until the king steps out onto the holographic balcony. Listening to the booming voice he glances around to see who else is attending the event as he puts a comforting hand on Red Alert's shoulder. "I know it is loud, you just have tuber with it for a moment." The noise will die down soon. He looks up at Starstruck as the mech accepts the quest, in full seriousness and entirely in character. Its actually somewhat impressive. "Oh, uh.. Y-yes, we accept your ..quest?" Rung doesn't sound nearly as sure or confident as Starstruck but he is definitely trying his best! Looking around again he spots Whisper looking at them from behind. Giving a small smile as he pushes his hood back, he gives a small wave to invite her over if she wishes to join them.

Oh, a quest to... Slay a dragon? Good thing its not a real dragon, he'd rather not do that... But fake dragon on a quest? Bitstream glances at his fellow magicker. And to show who's a better sorcerer? The Seeker takes a quiet step forward. "I shall join this quest to slay the beast," he proclaims, wings angling upward. He looks over to Starstruckand Rung, as if to size them up. Fake riches will be his.

Brainstorm...doesn't volunteer. He doesn't back away either. He certianly didn't come here to drink, even if the options are the glorious variety of mead, mead, and mead. He does watch this whole spectacle with interest, however. Movement in the corner of his optics causes him to trun from the main event and towards...a pile of leaves?

A cheer goes up from the crowd in response to the parties who volunteer to join the quest. The King raises his arms and calls out to the crowd once more. "Great warriors, I wish you luck on your quest! The spirits of the people are with you! May heaven itself bless your quest and speed you on your way. We will be waiting to hear of your victory," he says.

The cheering crowd turns towards the parties, moving in as if to lift and carry them off. Just before the crowd reaches them, though, the hologram flickers and begins to fade away. Mirage's voice, now clearly tokened as the narrator, cuts in to continue the scene. "And so the brave adventurer's journey began. They traveled past hollow and hill, through spring, winter, and fall, to chase the trail of destruction left by the dragon. They faced many struggles along the way, but they continued to endure..."

The meadow begins to flicker to life, a small trail of smoke drifting on the horizon hinting that is where the adventurers should move next.

Conduit looks down at the "mead", supposing it is merely engex with some additives. "Mead sounds acceptable," he replies flatly, and then remembers he is supposed to be in character. "I mean: Mead shall be ..." He looks at his robe, and realizes with an optic roll that his "character" is likely evil. "Mead shall suffice, worthless peon." He slaps the bartop, not too hard though, and then unceremoniously grasps the tankard and takes a much-needed swig. He observes the adventure unfolding, somewhat comfortably from his seat.

Whoop. He's been spotted.

Beachcomber freezes, laying still and holding his vents closed so as not to rustle while he watches Brainstorm and waits for a reaction. Belatedly he realizes he might be mistaken for a low-level enemy as part of Mirage's hologram. .......well, at least nobody had their gun on them tonight. And the scenery is changing - he looks much more at home in a meadow, though he supposes it does beg the question why a pile of leaves would be sitting in a meadow where nobody lives. Finetune ... really should read the schedule more often. As it is, the femme is reading something -else- it'd seem, nose buried in a datapad as she heads into Visages'-- after all, Swerve's is the place for the loud and boisterous, right? Nothing ever happens there!

...except, apparently, for tonight, when hologram-induced fantasy seems to be the order of the day. Slowly, with wide optics, Finetune lowers her datapad and sizes up the situation. 
"Soooo. This was unexpected."

Tetroxide pauses as Conduit downs his 'mead,' forgetting to mop up the puddle of engex on the table. As he has been struggling staying in character all night, it comes as no surprise that he is caught a little off guard by Conduit's comments. His optics begin to bleed light, and that may or may not be a sniffle. He genuinely things he has upset Conduit. "If you're not satisfied with the fare, I'm sure that I can have Mirage mix up something a little different."

He turns away, trying to hide his faceplates.

<FS3> Red_Alert rolls Investigation: Success. (4 1 1 3 5 5 7 4 2)

Mirage pauses when he sees Finetune standing in the middle of his scene and temporarily shifts from the control panel to address them in a whisper. "I apologize for the surprise. You came during one of our theme nights. If you simply with to enjoy a drink and company, you may proceed to the bar in the corner," he explains, gesturing across the room.

Red Alert lets his gaze drift across the meadow in an attempt to regain a bit of character and seriousness. It's a little obvious where they're supposed to be heading, but he lets himself play around a bit as he examines the landscape and...a random pile of leaves in the midst of it?

"Mine elf eyes--" that sounded fantasy, didn't it? "--spy fire in the distance. We should go that way, um, fair companions of mine."

Aw, Rung and Red Alert are so cute. This quest is gonna be so fun with these two. Starstruck sees Rung gesture toward Whisper, and hopes she'll join their little party as well. She looked tank....ish. She looked something at least, something melee-centered, which would balance out their group better. He puts a servo to his brow as Red Alert speaks, pretending that he's looking off into the distance. "I believe you are correct, my pointy-eared friend!" Star turns his head to glance back at the tavern, wondering if he has time to grab another tankard and bring it along with them - that's kind of in character, right? - when he finally notices the barkeep, who he'd missed while checking out the holoforms earlier.

Uh oh.

"Or. Uh." Star waffles. Awesome quest vs. adorably cute mech in a barmaid's dress. Awesome quest....barmaid....quest....barmaid....yeah it doesn't take long for him to decide. "Ah, apologies! I just realized I left the fireplace on! Go on without me, and may your hearts ever be brave!" This is accompanied by a sheepish grin and a waggle off his digits before he's headed back to the tavern area of the room. He'll probably spend the rest of the night stealing Tetroxide's attention whenever he can and, of course, flirting up a storm. It would be criminal to miss this opportunity, after all.

Conduit isn't sure what's going on ... is this bartender also in character? He's quite good if so, that looks like real ... ah, no, he named Mirage. Conduit lifts up a hand. "No, no, it's fine, I was merely attempting to be in character. An evil character, so I was pretending to be ... rude ... the mead is fine." He tilts his head into one head while he uses the other to hoist the mug. The mead is fizzy.

Rung beams at Red Alert as he tries to stay in character, and as a result unintentionally breaks it, "Oh that is excellent wording Red Al- uh.. i mean.. um.. I-indeed my..." What is it fantasy characters are supposed to say??, "fellow travelers..." Then Starstruck is gone, rambling off something about leaving the fireplace on whatever that means, "Wha- Starstruck but you are the one who knows how to-" It doesn't take much investigating to see what Starstruck is really up to, and while Rung really can't hold it against him (he knows what the mech is like after all) it leaves him looking very obviously lost as to what to do now. As if sensing his distress, his hood once again comically falls over his face.

Oh, well... That went off without a hitch. Already three seasons into the quest too? This Dungeon Master sure knew how to get things goin. Alright, meadow with his... Companions. Bitstream looks over all of them, lips pressing into a line. He wasn't the most impressed buuut... It could be worst. At least the bard is big and could possibly- oh, there he goes. His wings sink and he pouts at the terrible excuse. "A plague of fire upon his house," he mutters before nodded. "Yes, that way seems to be where the beast went. We should make haste, least we loose the creature for another season." He looks back to his compatritots and he scowling. Fragging noobs.

Brainstorm watches as the bush shuffles along with the crowd and scene, and his expression contorts in to a mischevious smirk "I believe what we have there is a malicious spirit!" he declares, steping out, towards the pile. The orb of his staff glows brighter as he points it at his target. In the next moment, a burst of flames erupts from the staff.

The 'malicious spirit' has nothing to wory about, of course. The fire might look, and sound real, and the staff even gives off some heat, but it's little more than a hologram. Brainstorm still looks rather pleased with himself. Do you have a special effects staff that spits holo-fire? Didn't think so.

Finetune blinkblinks again in Mirage's direction. "Theme night? Huh." She hmms-- and, glancing over towards the party-o-adventurers, the femme heads in that direction! She comes to a halt a short distance away, and sizes up the ragtag bunch of adventurers-- though Brainstorm's holo-fireball-staff does earn a quirked brow from the femme. She gives a 'hm, and then looks over at Bitstream. "There's a beast?" She chimes in, blissfully unaware of the plot-- if there is such a thing.

Red Alert is about to reply to Starstruck's enthusiastic response when suddenly it becomes an enthusiastic retreat. "Wha--" he mutters, bewildered, and then his elf eyes spy Starstruck cozying up by the side of the bar and making optics at the peculiarly-dressed bartender. "Oh," he mutters flatly. Starstruck's reputation certainly isn't for nothing. He tosses a sympathetic glance at Rung who suddenly looks rather lost, and since it's someone Red generally looks to for guidance, he's starting to feel a little lost himself.

"Sorry," he mutters.

Mirage is torn between ushering Finetune out of the scene, as it ruins the feel, and stepping back up to the control panel. It is, after all, time to move on to the next step. However, he decides he cannot nag his patrons (as much as he might wish to at times). With a smile, he adds, "Yes, we are Live Action Roleplaying. If you have any questions about it, Tetroxide can answer them," he says, once again pointing towards the bar.

He turns back towards the the control panel just in time to see the holographic fire flowing in Beachcomber's direction (Yes, comber, he knows it is you). It looks so real that he gives a small yelp of terror, yellow optics widening in shock.

Meanwhile, Tetroxide is looking a little sheepish when he realizes his mistake. His hand is still covering his faceplates, but he turns around to face Conduit once more. "O-oh, I get it. Uh, I didn't mean to make you feel bad. How does a mead on the house sound?" he pauses. Would Mirage let him offer mead on the house? Mead on his tab then.

There's a slight sense of heat coming from in front of him.

Aw frag.

Beachcomber leaps back a step or two away from the fire he can't entirely see, pushing the hood of his cloak up from where it'd slipped in front of his visor. Aha. 'Twas Brainstorm with the firey staff - and stars only know what that staff is capable of if the scientist built it himself, so he was apparently wise to skeedaddle a bit out of range. "No malice intended, travelers!" Beachcomber giggles sheepishly before simply plonking himself back down into pile form.

No minibots here. Just ... leaves.

Bitstream feels rather... Annoyed. Just a tad. But he lets that go quickly to jump back as those realistic flames go spurting out, wings flaring in alarm. He would have quickly found something to... Carefully put between him and fire before he realizes there's no heat- we, well, not the intense heat that should be around fire. And he ought to know- Hotlink loves his special flamethrower. And now that he's looking, he can see the edges- its a projection! And a hell of one.

Bitstream's jaw snaps shut from hanging open. Okay, that's cool... Maybe Brainstorm and he can talk LARP weapons later. "Good... eye, Storm Bringer. But we should leave the spirit to test your fire's mettle against the dragon's," he says after a moment, not sure if the leaves are a real risk or a distraction, or a nuisance. Or all three, you never know.

Mirage looks relieved when he realizes that the fire is fake, having to take a moment to compose himself. Stepping up to the control panel he tries to steel himself to continue the scene. Although, an idea is beginning to form in his mind. The scout leans towards the mic and smiles to himself. He's a little too self-satisfied with his own creative streak. "Angered by the attack on one of the innocent forest spirits, the enchanted wood groans a warning," he narrates. Flicking a button, the burning trees on the horizon begin to shift. "The forest itself now bares down on our brave adventurers. What will they do next?" Sure enough, the holographic trees, many smoldering with dragon fire, are pulling their roots from the ground and crawling towards them with reaching branches.

Conduit relaxes somewhat. "Unnecessary. Perhaps we can simply remain ... not in character, between us. To avoid further confusion." Even as he utters the words he's not sure if his suggestion will in fact reduce Tetroxide's confusion, but an island of sanity is very desirable to Conduit right now so he lets the suggestion stand. Although Starstruck's banter certainly won't help. He continues to watch the tale unfold.

Finetune takes in the explanation with ... a puzzled look. "Huh." She says, taking a moment to process the situation- as well as the fact that apparently Beachcomber has chosen to play a pile of leaves? What? But then, there's narration-- and lumbering trees.

"Oh! It's a combat simulation!" Finetune says, with just a slight bit of eagerness in her voice. She bounces upon her bootlike feet, and falls into a practiced, controlled Circuit-Su stance-- feet wide, hands held up and at the ready to both defend and attack as needed. She prowls forward, and then snaps her right foot out in a quick flurry of side-kicks at the nearest tree-holo! Guess she's playing the Monk? 
"C'mon!" She calls cheerily over her shoulder at Red, Rung, and Bitstream. "We can take 'em!"

Rung suddenly notices that Red Alert is beginning to feed off his own uncertainty. Letting it get to him won't help Red Alert to enjoy himself any during this event, so Rung forces a small smile on his face, "It is alright, I suppose we will just have to wing it as we go!" He looks over as Brainstorm seems to attempt to set fire to a pile of leaves... only for the pile to jump up and skitter several paces away before sitting down again. Is that beachcomber?? Only then the holographic forest seems to come alive. The Therapist turned Priest looks around at what others are doing as one of the monsters approaches them. He lets out a chuckle at Finetune's eagerness before glancing uncertainly to Red. Rung tentatively holds out his staff before warily saying, ".... magic?" in an attempt to copy what others seem to be doing. The reactions to his holo-flame leaves Brainstorm looking quite pleased. Even Beachcmber's --erm, the leaves' retreat earns them a cheerful look "You sure?" he leans in a bit towards the 'spirit', rubbing his chin with his hand, having tucked his 'book' under his arm "Cause I know I've seen you before. How do we know you're not spying on us?" he looks up at the angry forest "Like for them?" He's well aware that this is all a hologram, but old habits die hard, and he finds himself taking a step back.

Bitstream is not a fighter. He's certainly not a lover but damn is he not a fighter- physically, at least. But this is fake! This he can do! He gets into a ready stance, ready to fling his cloak back and reveal his magicks to the onlookers when... Finetune starts kicking. He stops what he's doing, wings hicking up. The plebs! He's so complaining about these incompetent on his blog later. He honestly can't help but stare, so ready to show off but... Primus, how are they all so bad at this.

Beachcomber can't help but chortle at the questions about his errand, popping up again to grin brightly at Brainstorm. Might as well play the role of the fae, yes? "Spying? On Wizards? I was only curious what all the fuss was about - and why wanderers were tromping through- uh- my meadow." Yes. It's his meadow now. If that's okay with Raj, he supposes. "But you tried to set fire to me without even asking what I was! That's so mean!" He sinks down into his pile puddle again, hiding his face with a rustle of his cloak. "Such mean travelers..." A flash of fire has Red Alert jumping, but not as much as when the forest itself lunges forward to attack them. It's maybe not quite in character to shield Rung from the potential threat, being a healer and all, but he can't quite help himself as he pushes the both of them back.

"M-Magic," he agrees shakily, as he raises his weird arm-wand and waves it in a circle. "What would be a good-sounding spell?" he whispers to Rung, but then suddenly a flash of inspiration crosses his features. "Wait I've got one...Aura of Protection!" he announces, repeating something he once heard Drift say. If anyone is good inspiration for fantasy, it's Drift.

As if in response to Rung's word, the whole holoform flickers and disappears. Mirage's optics widen in surprise, and he leans over the control panel to try and find the source of the malfunction. When he figures out he will not be able to fix it in a timely manner, though, he does the only thing he can do. Once more, he improvizes. Leaning towards the mic, Mirage's slightly panicked voice directs the adventurers to continue. "Because of the pure, holy power of the priest, the party pushes back the demons with little trouble. The way is now clear to the dragon's lair."

The dragon in the cave opens it yellow eyes, watching the adventurers with a predatory grin.

Tetroxide, meanwhile, looks relieved at Conduit's suggestion. His voice drops to a whisper as he leans across the bar.

"Don't know what I'm doing here, honestly. I'm no bartender, but Raj called in a favor. I'd rather stick to rocket science. At least that's easy." His gaze darts to the mugs of mead and he picks one up. With a shrug, he decides he's through with pretending. He steps out from behind the bar and plops down next Conduit on a stool. He craddles the tankard at his chestplates. "At least he's letting me keep the dress."

Finetune barely gets the chance to start laying into the monster-flora before the simulation fritzes out. Aw. She doesn't QUITE pout, but there's still a bit of annoyance as she takes a step back and ... hey, a cave! With something lurking inside!

"Okay, so ... " Finetune muses, sizing the thing up. "That's the beast we're after?" She rubs at her chin, and looks between Rung, Red, and Brainstorm. "Is anyone carrying explosives? We could just collapse the cave enterance and starve the monster to death. Unless it feeds on geothermal energy, which I suppose would explain the fire breathing ... " She muses aloud, and then gives Brainstorm a nudge. "What do you think?"

Rung stands there and blinks in utter confusion as the hologram flickers out. What just happened? Oh Primus did he manage to break it!? He looks alarmed until Mirage speaks through the microphone but that only works to confuse him more. He looks utterly bewildered as they are moved forward in the quest. But.. all he said was magic! Fantasy books really made this seem a lot harder. "uh... Primus gives us his blessing! Now we shall... proceed?" Rung is clearly trying his best, even if his best isn't entirely cutting it.

Even before the words leave Red Alert's vocoder, the hologram winks out and is replaced. "Oh, we defeated it already?" he wonders, and stares down at Rung, the supposed turning-point in this battle. "That must have been some magic," he says, somewhat baffled.

Bitstream's optics shutter and... Harumph! He stands up straight, wings hung sulkily. Well... At least they made it to the beast's lair. He looks at the hologram and makes a face. Yech, organic! HE hates... organic- if it ain't cyberformed, he's not stepping on the planet. But, hologram, it's a little less detestable. His burning look from within his hood is directed at Finetune. ASFDSJKL! Explosives?! His vents huff. "Perhaps the great and holy cleric can exorcise the beast and send it back to the Pit wence it came," he mutters, not advancing on the dragon yet. Real or not, he's wary. Wanna win the campaign after all!

Conduit gives a wobbly nod to Tetroxide, superficially agreeing with his good fortune. He himself won't be keeping the robe. Probably. He sips more of his drink, then points to one of the winged adventurers. "That Seeker. Is that Bitstream?"

Even Brainstorm looks surprised when Rung's 'spell' seems to cause the demise of the entire scene. A moment to think, and a quick look at Mirage soon answers that question for him, earning the bartender, and Rung, an amused, and approving look "Just don't point that thing at me, okay?"

On to the next scene it is then. The dragon. This looks like a job for knights. Do they ha, however, seems to be advocating more radical methods "Of course I could cast a fireball, but then we'd have to wait until it dies, and then dig it out for proof before we can get our reward!"

Beachcomber didn't get banished with the hologram. So he lifts his arms slightly and shakes his cloak. Rustle rustle. "You should try talking about your feelings with the dragon, travelers! Perhaps he will be generous and altercations of the physical variety can be avoided. Diplomacy will take you much further than fire will." Rustle rustle. Rustle.

Finetune ohs. "We need the body?" Another pause. "There's a reward? Huh." She rocks back on her heels, blissfully unaware of Bistream's scorn. She glances curiously over at Beachcomber as he advocates diplomacy, and then nods. "Well, that's a good idea. Why don't you go talk to the dragon?" she says, cheery. And with that, Finetune moves to give Beachcomber a little gentle *push* towards the open cave mouth! What could possibly go wrong?

Something is bothering Red Alert, something he can't quite explain--

He listens to Finetune's suggestions, and while few have them have managed to stay entirely in-character this entire time, for some reason she seems to stand out more than the rest of them. She has the right enthusiasm, but something's not--

Oh! Realization flashes through Red Alert's processor, and he briefly retreats to the costumes. She's not wearing a silly outfit like the rest of them, and that's just not fair. "Here," he says, returning with a band to tie around her head. "You need this if you're going to challenge dragons."

Apparently the dragon is not too keen on letting the adventurers (and a pile of leaves) talk strategy; the yellow eyes draw closer as the creature lumbers out into the open air. In a display of great power, it stretches it wings and breathes blue-flecked flames towards the ceiling. "The time for the final battle has arrived. Will the adventurers save the kingdom?" Mirage asks. If indeed Finetune succeeds in pushing Beachcomber closer, the pile of leaves are dangerously close to the beasts huge feet.

Tetroxide, now having found a new drinking buddy, turns aroun to watch the scene with Conduit. He tilts his helm at the mecha he gestured towards and smiles sheepishly. "Uh, I don't rightly know?" he admits. "I don't know all the fliers on board just because I'm a rocket." That's right, folks. He is a rocket who is a rocket scientist. The world is full of ironies. "Any reason you're looking for this 'Bitstream?'"

Rung holds his staff closer to his body, looking to the others as beachcomb- uh the meadow spirit suggests they should talk to the dragon instead. Personally Rung would have nothing against talking to the dragon, it might be interesting to see what it has to say. One look at the others quickly brings that idea down though. It is highly doubtful that any of them are about to try and take the peaceful route, so Rung lets himself be shuffled to the back as the dragon walks out, where he can just let them have their fun and do... priestly.. things... A smile breaks across his face as he watches Red Alert give Finetune something to wear. Look at him make friends!

<FS3> Beachcomber rolls Meditation: Good Success. (2 8 6 5 2 7 3 6 6)

Finetune ohs at Red Alert. "Uh, okay?" She says, and neatly ties the headband in place. An inexplicable breeze rolls through, ruffling the trailing ties of the bandanna behind her. But, no sooner has she done this, the big dragon is making a ruckus! Well, so much for negotiation.

Still, even as Finetune readies herself for the coming brawl, she can't help but note: "... you know, something that size could NEVER fly on wings that small. Unless it's operating on some kind of jet turbine system? Or rocket propulsion, maybe? Honestly, this combat simulation really could use some peer review. The physics are all off."

Huhwha- Oh! Okay! Beachcomber is getting scooted into the cave with the dragon, then. Hm. This is a bit of a ... conundrum isn't it. He wasn't entirely intending to be part of the battle, but it seems he doesn't have much choice in the matter now. Hm.

Well he is a nature spirit of sorts, isn't he? And a dragon is part of nature. Sooooo... maybe? It's worth a shot just to see what Mirage does - though that does prompt him to send his roommate a quick, private message. Don't hold back because of me. ;)

The leaves of his cloak rustle, and he begins to hum. Low, steady tones in long stretches of droning, he sits and lets them roll from his chest. "Ohhmmm...."

Mirage, in his far corner, looks a little put off by the critique to his art. While he usually tries to be gracious to his customers, prodding at the authenticity of his art is nothing he will abide sitting down. Twisting around, he types a few quick commands into the hologram module and the roaring dragon's tail is replaced with with a jet turbine. It begins to whirr with a quiet whine.

Thusly 'fixed,' the dragon finally seems to notice the pile of leaves at its feet. Turning down to sniff them, blue fire begins to wreathe at the edges of its mouth. The newly created jet turbine is now facing the adventurers, and it creates the illusion of a breeze when holographic leaves and dirt began to fly away.

"Well, yes, of course not." Conduit couldn't even tell what Tetroxide's alt mode was. "He has something of mine." He keeps a watchful eye on the Seeker and the play as it nears its climax. The holographic display is certainly ... unique.

Red Alert winces. At this rate he's about to watch the pile of leaves go up in flames. Again. While he may still consider Beachcomber something of a general fire hazard, even he has to admit it's not his fault this time.

"Um, uh, Enchanted Fire Extinguisher!" he announces, waving the wand around again. It's not quite as good as the last magic spell he came up with, but it will have to do for now.

Rung watches as beachcomber begins to meditate in front of the dragon with amusement. That definitely seems in character, both his role and his actual personality. Then the dragon's tail morphs into a turbine.. that is rather strange. "Mystic Fire Shield" is what is whispered to Red Alert in a suggestion for a potentially better wording. He won't actually make any action unless required. Can Priests heal or revive allies??

Finetune 's optics go a little wide at the sudden change. "Oh hey, it transformed!" And then, there's almost a 'ding!' of a lightbulb as Finetune declares- "That gives me an idea! Keep it busy!" She says-

And with that, Finetune transforms down into her sleek roadster mode, and speeds off at a velocity that is sure to leave tire marks on the floor! *VROOM!*

"Other than your attention?" Tetroxide teases to Conduit, and then he pauses. The rocket scientist shifts in his stool and takes a deep swig of his mead. He just realized how awkward of a comment that is for a virtual stranger. He smiles sheepishly. "Sorry, shouldn't have said that."

Bitstream takes a step back, eying the dragon as he prepares to use his magicks. This is a stupid, organic beast. You can't reason with it, just gotta kill it. He's ready to go... When Finetune manages to make his wings snap up at attention. "For Prime's sake- it uses MAGIC! It doesn't need anything based in reality, or have you not... noticed..." He had turned to look back at the dragon and saw... Jet turbine. Holy Prime above... His wings twitch. Had those always been there? Was he going crazy?? And why did he have this feeling someone was talking about him??? He hasn't technically slept in three days... That might explain it.

And then Finetune transforms.

Bitstream slowly turns to Brainstorm and just gesticulates with his wings 'DID YOU SEE THAT?!' Along with what's sure to be several insults and curses in wing-speak. Then he looks back at the dragon, wings lifting slowly as he considers some options while the others are busy. He's in no rush to attract the Dragon's attention yet.

"Yes," Conduit answers both of Tetroxide's statements at once. "But perhaps now is not the best time to pursue that, among so many." He finishes his mead and places his payment on the bar. "Thank you for the drink." He rises and quietly moves to the exit, depositing the staff with the costumes on his way out. The robe, lit from within, flutters about him as he goes.

All the shouting, while having no impact on the dragon like before, does serve to distract its attention from the pile of leaves. It turns, at first, to watch the small party. That does not last long, however, as the mecha suddenly transforming into a car is a big distraction. By this point all sense of the fantasy of the game is basically lost, and Mirage has to heave a sigh at both the tire tracks being left on his floor and at the ridiculous storyline. However, it is his job to see this through to the end.

Pressing a few buttons, the dragon begins to chase the transformed vehicle in circles, much as a dog might do with its tail, and before long the beast stumbles from the dizziness and accidentally bumps its head against the mouth of the cave. Thud. It drops to the ground in a confused haze.

"Oh hey!" Finetune says, noting the sudden stomping of a giant lizard in her rear view mirror. "Not what I was planning on, but it'll work!" And in true autobot fashion, she tears around the room, until there's that *THUNK!* and a dazed dragon!

Chipper and smiling, Finetune pops back into her robot mode, and bounces upon the balls of her feet. "Woohoo! We did it! That means we get the reward, right?" She grins, and glances over at Bitstream-- he seemed like he knew what he was talking about, right? "Y'know, for a combat sim, this was pretty easy." She notes.

Rung watches as the dragon goes running around after Finetune, who has practically obliterated the fantasy setting by now.. only to bash its head against the cave. He lets out a small cringe when he sees how annoyed Bitstream is getting. He can't help but feel sorry for the mech, he seemed to be enjoying himself until now. That poor dragon too, holographic or not.

Bitstream's wing's panel and then twitch, optics narrowing at Finetune. A high-pitched whine could only be heard by the most sensitive of audios as his guns begin to power up. The guns attached to his arms- which he could just lift and then shoot the annoying Autobot... And then the armaments beneath his cloak stop powering up. He refuses to be bated by some... Some... Living troll! Instead, he turns and takes serveral steps closer to the beast. "Its not dead. Let's cut off the head and take it back to the King." Yay, woo, fake riches. If only the dragon had been real and stepped on Finetune. That would have been enjoyable.

<FS3> Red_Alert rolls Eavesdropping: Good Success. (5 4 3 4 5 7 4 3 8 7 2 2 6 3)

It seems his soothing hums are not working on the travelers as he'd've liked them to. Ah well. The dragon seems a little bit on the vanquished side soooo being the spirit of nature that he is, he quietly slips away back into the woods. Or, rather, scoots off to sit next to Raj's feet at the control panel and offer him a grin. "Hi Roomie." Beachcomber raises his leaves to rustle a greeting. "The spirits of the forest send their blessings."

It's all fun and games until Red Alert's sensitive audials pick up a certain, distinctive sound that he's heard many times over the millenia: the whine of a very much real set of weapons powering up. The sound sends an icy chill down his backstruts like a sudden rush of coolant. One moment he is coming up with silly magic names with Rung, the next he is ramrod straight, optics scanning and audials straining. The whine stutters and dies a short moment later, but suddenly he doesn't feel like the game is very fun, nor the bar very safe. "I think..." he says carefully, "that the game has reached its end, and it's time to disperse."

Even though he's a little grumpy about the turn this plot took towards the end, Beachcomber's sudden appearance helps ease Mirage into a calmer state. While he doesn't smile or answer him directly, Mirage leans down just enough to pat his roommate on the shoulder. He is glad that the small minibot always seems to have such a positive attitude. Leaning towards the mic, Mirage finally concludes the scene. "Having thusly vanquished the enemy, the party returns to share their victory with the citizens of the ravaged land. As promised, they received gifts of great value, but most of all they gained the love of the people."

With that, the hologram flickers out of existence and the lights in the room brighten. Mirage claps his hands together for his guests. "And that concludes our activity night. Thank you all for coming. It was a splendid performance."

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