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[F03-PP] <<Search for the Hoya>> Trying Too Hard


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The forest floor glimmered with strange patters as the sunlight made its way through the ceiling of leaves above. Ivory hadn't been doing nothing over the past long while, but then again she hadn't really done anything of importance either. She didn't have any friends really, and her skills lay in such a way that she couldn't really do anything by herself. She twirled a lock of her long white hair between her fingertips as she lost herself in thought. As time passed the people of Aincrad seemed to be getting sadder and more hopeless and it made her sick to her stomach that she couldn't alleviate that. Her skirt swished between her legs as she made her way over to a tree near the teleport platform, sitting down in the dirt as she waited. It was about time that she did something to help the other people stuck in this game, and to do that she needed to get stronger. To help her with this goal she had made a posting on the request board for some players to help her with one of the easier quests. It was drawing close to the time that she had listed and the woman couldn't help but be excited at the prospect of potential new friends.

Spoiler

Stats:

Level: 19

Mitigation: 62

Health: 410

Equipment:

Spoiler

Starter Two Handed Longsword, Heavy Plated Armor

Skills:

Spoiler

 

>> First Aid: Rank 5 (30 SP)

Mods:

>[Rank 2 First Aid Mod] Purify (4 SP)

>[Rank 3 First Aid Mod] Energize (5 SP)

>[Energize Mod Add-On] Hyperactive (5 SP)

>[Rank 4 First Aid Mod] Barrier (6 SP)

>[Rank 5 First Aid Addon] Field Medic (6 SP)

 

>R0 Combat Mastery Mitigation

» Heavy Armor: Rank 5 (30 SP)

Mods:

>>[Rank 5 Heavy Armor Addon] Iron Skin (6 SP)

 

 

 

Edited by Ivory Lotus
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"Larbrook?  You really strike me as more of a Stoik, or maybe a Kratos.  No?  Oh well.  It really doesn't matter."

Tall and lanky, dressed in shades of black and charcoal from head to toe, Freyd's back was turned to Ivory as she entered the main square of the treetop settlement of Aruyt.  Dozens of rabbit-eared Faune busied themselves about their daily tasks, getting ready for market, chasing after wayward children, or just generally looking busy for the sake of atmosphere.  His head was cowl-covered, as it so often was, and his tone was one of practical discussion as he engaged in conversation with a large Viking-like human.  Both stood out starkly against the domestic affairs of the square.

"Yes, you can tag along, if you insist.  I'm just going through the motions, checking to see if my quest information is up to date.  So many changes!"  The cowl shook, apparently exasperated, even as his left hand reached out to open up an interface window.

To @Astreya
From: Freyd

I'm in Aruyt, on floor 3.  There's a quest here that need verifying to ensure that it hasn't changed too much.  If you've got a bit of time, I can run you through it.  Let me know.  I'll see if these rabbit-folk have anything that can passably be called coffee while I wait to hear from you.

"Where the hell are you even from?  I thought that all the locals were either Fae or Faune."  Pivoting as he searched for a beverage supplier, the Whisper spotted Ivory standing a few paces away.  All that was visible to her was a pale-skinned, unremarkable face and a shadowed pair of red eyes, though their intensity spoke to the man's will and experience.  The cowl tilted in a manner reminiscent of a curious beagle.  "Are you here for the Hoya?  I was just about to set out, after waiting for a friend.  We can always bring another, if you're in need?"

***

Freyd | HP: 900/900 | EN: 124/124 | DMG: 24 | MIT: 66 | EVA: 1 | ACC: 4 | BH: 45 | LD: 5 | | FLN: 8 | HLY: 8 | V.O.: 90

Spoiler

Freyd,
Level: 31
Paragon Level: 60
HP: 900/900
EN: 124/124

Stats:
Damage: 24
Mitigation: 66
Evasion: 1
Accuracy: 4
Battle Healing: 45
Loot Dice: 5
FLN: 8
HLY: 8
V.O.: 90

Equipped Gear:
Weapon: Samael's Pride (T4-WH, VO 1, HOLY 1, FLN 1)
Armor: Skirmisher's Garb (T3 LA, MIT 2, EVA 1)
Misc: Night Shades (T3-Trinket, ACC 3)

Skills:
War Hammer R5
Light Armor R5
Searching R5
Battle Healing R5
Charge
Energist
Extended Weight Limit
Shades of the Gemini [Disguise Add-on]

Active Mods:
Large Pockets
Ferocity
Stamina
Meticulous
Resolve

Inactive Mods:

Active Extra Skills:
Disguise
Survival
Meditation
Forgotten King’s Authority

Inactive Extra Skills:

Battle Ready Inventory:Teleport Crystals: Gungnir: T3 Perfect HP Rec [Instant]: Mass HP Rec [Instant] (+30*Tier HP): Antidote 3:

Housing Buffs:
Rested: -1 energy cost for the first two expenditures of each combat
Clean: The first time you would suffer DoT damage in a thread, reduce damage taken from DoT each turn by 20% (rounded down)
Hard Working: +2 EXP per crafting attempt and +1 crafting attempt per day
Filling: Increase the effectiveness of a single food item consumed in a thread by +1 T1 slot.
Item Stash: +1 Battle Ready Inventory Slot
Delicious: Turn 3 identical food items (same quality, tier, & enhancements) into a Feast. A Feast contains 6 portions of the food items sacrificed.
Relaxed: Increases out of combat HP regen by (5 * Tier HP) and decreases full energy regen to 2 Out of Combat Posts.
Skylight (Searching): +1 Rank to the Searching skill.
Master Angler: +1 to CD & LD when fishing.  +2 EXP to fishing attempts.
Advanced Training: +10% Exp to a thread. Limit one use per month [0/1]
Multipurpose: Gain +1 to LD, Stealth Rating, Stealth Detection, or Prosperity to one post in a thread. Can be applied after a roll
Decor [Potted Tanabata Bamboo Tree]: This buff affects the player and their choice of up to two party members.

Guild Hall Buffs:
Lucrative: Reduce LD needed for Salvage by 5 (10+ for Alchemist crystals, 6+ for everything else). +2 EXP per craft. Rank 9 crafters receive +1 crafting attempt per day. Rank 10 crafters receive +2 crafting attempts per day.
Col Deposit: +5% bonus col from last-hit monster kills and +10% bonus col from treasure chests.

Scents of the Wild:
Kumatetsu Statue: +1 Base Damage for a thread

Wedding Ring:

 

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Ivory stood up as the stranger addressed her, making note of his strange colored eyes and extremely pale skin. They were some very nice eyes, but they were so serious...  She brushed the dust off of her clothes, a wistful look on her face. "I was, and that would be wonderful. It's been a long time since I've done a quest, or combat or anything really." She beamed at him for a moment before pursing her lips, looking like she was trying to remember something. There was a pause before she spoke up again, looking like she had figured something out. "... I'm Ivory, its lovely to meet you!" She exclaimed as she brushed her hair behind her ear, seeming completely unconcerned by doing a quest with a complete stranger who she knew nothing about. What happened happened; She would just go with the flow. Plus, she could already tell that she had made a great impression on this new friend of hers.

Ivory LotusLvl: 19 | Mitigation: 66 | Health: 465 | EN: 60

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Sitting with legs dangling off the side of the platform woven together by trees, the pink-haired player couldn't help but overhear on the conversation that was happening nearby. She plopped the last of her mini-cupcakes into her mouth before excitedly standing up. In a movement that could only be described as a mixture between walking and skipping, she joined the duo and Viking in conversation. "Hoya!" She spoke as a greeting to the other players. One was wearing some weird hood that covered most of his features. 'That one must be shy!' She thought to herself. The other was a white-haired girl who seemed to just be wearing standard equipment. 

"Are you going somewhere? I was getting pretty bored, so I'd love to join! Oh, I should probably introduce myself!" Throwing up a sideways peace sign in front of her face, she would introduce herself as she always did. "I'm Blueberry! You can call me Blue or Berry if you would rather though!~" She beamed the two players a smile. "I used to be able to heal until..." Her voice drifted off as she thought of the cold storm that had taken her. The terrifying loneliness. Her eyes dimmed a bit as it became obvious that she was bothered a bit. "... but now all I can do is provide snacks!" She said with a smile. 

Stats

Spoiler

Blueberry,
Level: 5
Paragon Level: 0
HP: 100/100
EN: 28/28

Stats:
Damage: 4
Mitigation: 12
Evasion: 2
BLD: 12
PARA
REC: 2

Equipped Gear:
Weapon: Blue Poison | T1 War Hammer : 2 Bleed | Paralyze
Armor: Blue Blazer | T1 LA : 2 MIT | EVA
Misc: Blue Bangle | T1 Trinket: 2 Recovery | EVA

Skills:
War Hammer R1

Active Mods:

Inactive Mods:

Active Extra Skills:

Inactive Extra Skills:


Battle Ready Inventory:
1: 2
2: 3
3: 4
4: 5
5: 6
6: 7
7: 8

 

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Astreya had loitered around on the Second Floor a bit after the quest with Freyd.  She'd taken his friend request, of course, and things seemed to settle down for her.  She needed time to process everything that she'd gone through, and she was just about coming to terms with everything that had happened- from the thugs to Freyd's actions following and was readying herself to head on up to Floor 3 in search of the Gypsy once more before a message came over her HUD.

She blinked, scratching her head slightly as she took a few seconds before she realized how to open it... before realizing that it was from Freyd.  Her heart skipped a slight beat at seeing the message from him, non-chalant, as if he hadn't taken the actions he had.  

All the same, the young woman had come to terms with it.  She didn't necessarily like it, but she understood the reasons behind the actions taken, and knew that he was just doing it to keep her (and Koko) safe.  That was not something she would hold against him.  The question was if he'd even consider that from her or perhaps this was his (strange? (which was Freyd, sometimes)) way of issuing an apology, inviting her on another quest.

Quote

 

Reply To: @Freyd
From: Astreya

Sure!  I was actually just about to head up there to keep hunting that Gypsy lady.  I'll be there in a jiffy!

 

With that sent, the girl nodded to herself, and began to head for the Teleporter on the Second Floor to get to the Third.

---

Moments later, she entered into Aruyt, and exhaled softly as she stepped out- before immediately seeing Freyd with two young women next to him.  She grinned as she approached, lifting one hand in an excited wave.  "Hey!  Freyd, I never realized you were such a Casanova," the girl teased as she approached, having caught the tail end of Blueberry introducing herself.  "Hey guys!  I'm Astreya- tank-in-training!" she declared, despite the fact that she was using a Two-Handed Straight Sword.  "We got a full party, huh?  This is gonna be so much fun!" she cheered.

Spoiler

 

--Level 14
--HP: 280
--NRG: 46

--Base Damage: 8
--Mitigation: 37
--Regeneration: 2% (Currently 4)
--Accuracy: 3
--Thorns: 18
--Taunt: 1


Skills:
Battle Healing: Journeyman
Fighting Spirit
Howl
|-> Focused Howl

2H Straight Sword: Journeyman

Heavy Armor: Expert
|-> Impetus

Concentration

Gear:
»Silver Frost [2H Straight Sword] | Rare T2
[Damage] - Gain +2 base damage per slot.
[Accuracy] - Add 1 onto your BD rolls (Cannot cause crits)

»Battle Dress | Rare T2 Heavy Armor
[Mitigation] - Prevent 12 damage from successful attacks against you.
[Thorns] - Successful non-critical attacks against you deal 18 unmitigated damage to the attacking enemy. Only activates on damage dealing, melee attacks.

»Dodgeball | Rare T1 Trinket
[Accuracy II] - Add 2 onto your BD rolls (Cannot cause crits)

»Spotlight | Rare T2 Trinket
[Taunt] - Adds 1 Hate generated from successful attacks, Howl and Furious Howl.
[Recovery] - Regain 2 additional energy on natural CD rolls of 7+. 

Consumables:
»Starter Healer Potions | Heals 50 HP
[3 Total]
»Tier One Damage Potion of Uncommon quality. (+1 Damage)
[1 Total]
»Tier One Health Potions of Rare quality. (+10% HP)
[3 Total]
»Tier One Immolation Potion (+10 Thorns Damage)
[1 Total]
»Fixer Upper (Salve) | Antidote I
[1 Total]

 

 

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"Casa..."  Freyd's cowl bobbed upward at the sound of Astreya's voice.  "Hah!  This is nothing.  You should see the harem that is Firm Anima.  The guild has more girls than guys, by a wide margin."  Looking over the trio before him, he seemed to be appraising each of them as much as their gear, evaluating their potential.  "Yeah, this'll work.  Not much prep required for this.  Just steer clear of the horns and try not to make any mooing noises.  The mobs consider it rude.  We're going to kill them anyway, but there's no need to be rude about it.  Besides which, Orgoth, this huge-ass minotaur champion, saved our butts up on floor 25, so I'm giving his bovine buddies a bit of extra courtesy on this run."

Freyd walked and talked, leading the gaggle of girls to the outskirts of the stone-walled labyrinth.   Nearly twenty feet high and perfectly smooth, the masonry was completely unclimbable, and too solid to damage.  He even gave it a whack with the strange black stick he carried around.  An error message popped up, confirm the walls' status as an immortal object.  Astreya had recently seen him kills two PKers with the very same weapon.  He seemed oblivious to any reaction she might have had to its appearance, though a passing track from the corner of his eyes suggested that he might not be so oblivious.  Maybe he just had the decency not to show it?  

Or maybe you're just weird, Freyd.

Granted, Montjoy.

Always with the silent conversations between himself and his shadow.  Freyd wondered what people would think if they could hear the exchanges aloud.  Probably nothing good, and he didn't need people thinking he was any loonier than they already did.

"There!"  A gap appeared in the wall, only visible as they were upon it.  From afar, this section appeared no different than any of the rest.

***

[Labyrinth search 1/5]

 

 

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The healer definitely approved of not being rude to the Minotaurs, although she really wished that they didn't have to kill them for the quest. She didn't want anyone or anything to have to suffer. She shifted awkwardly as the man with the red eyes looked over each of them in turn, seeming to be analyzing something. It was awkward because she had absolutely no equipment and imagined that she looked fairly helpless. Ivory could for the life of her remember what had happened to it. Maybe she misplaced it, or gave it away or something dumb like that. She tended to do those kinds of things without thinking. She smiled to the other two girls, a friendly smile. "Its really nice to meet you both, I'm Ivory. I hope we can all be friends." She stated hopefully.

She glanced around the labyrinth, already lost even though they had just entered. Not wanting to discourage the others or embarrass herself she decided to keep this fact to herself and let the man who had invited her take the lead. He really seemed to know what he was doing, unlike her. She kicked a rock in front of her absentmindedly, caught up in her thoughts. She wasn't sure why but she found cloaked man to be very intimidating and for once in her life she wasn't talking anyone's ear off excitedly.

[Labyrinth search 2/5]

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A fourth joined their merry crew, and she secretly became filled with glee. Her personal objective was getting really easy to do. Make as many friends as possible. Once, she had befriended an entire school and even became its idol. While she was more popular among the men, but she could definitely still work her magic with girls. 

"Hah!  This is nothing.  You should see the harem that is Firm Anima.  The guild has more girls than guys, by a wide margin."

'Firm Anima....' She picked up on word. Her eyes traveled up to the emblem embedded next to Freyd's health bar. A big grin split her face. "That's the group that Gaius is with!" The pink haired player seemed pleased with herself for coming up with the revelation. "I think there was some boy in a red coat that I met in a tavern that I was serving for was apart of your Anima thing." 

Blue followed the others, pulling out a small bag of chocolate covered cookies to begin munching on. There was nothing that could satisfy her sweet tooth. 

[Labyrinth search 3/5]

 
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"Firm what now?" Astreya responded, the girl blinking in response to Freyd's words.  This was about the first time she'd actually heard of such a thing- and now she was a little bit curious about what that might be.  Was that the name of Freyd's gang?  No, not gang.  Same idea, wrong word, wrong connotation.  She frowned for a half-second, trying to think of the word she wanted- it was hard when she wasn't exactly a gamer type- she didn't have all the fancy lingo on speed dial.

But as Ivory offered to be friends, Astreya grinned widely.  "Sure!  I'm already friends with tall dark and weird over here," she spoke, gesturing at Freyd, "but I'd love to be friends with you both too," she added with a cheer, lifting her hands up over her hand in excitement.  "I still haven't figure out how to work the uh.  Friend list thing though," she admitted, giving a slight grin.

Group!  No that still wasn't the right word.  Darn.  She needed to make sure she remembered what that word was, at some point or another.  But Blueberry seemed just about as lively and cheerful as Astreya did... and that was nice- it wasn't often that she found someone as bubbly as herself.

--

Once inside the labyrinth, Astreya glanced to the others.  "Let's pick a wall, left or right, and follow it.  It can take awhile, but as long as the walls themselves don't move, we like, totally can't get lost, y'know?" she cheered as they began to move deeper within the maze itself.

[Labyrinth Search 4/5]

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Posted (edited)

The white haired healer smiled to Astreya as her offer of friendship was accepted. She wouldn't admit it but she had never messed with the friends list either. It definitely wasn't that she didn't have friends though, oh no. She had more friends than she could count. They just were always busy and tended to give off the impression that they were avoiding her or didn't want to be around her. She knew that wasn't the case though. They just probably had a lot going on.

Ivory started to zone out a bit as they ventured further into the maze. "Well, we cant get lost if we aren't trying to get anywhere in particular in the first place." She mentioned in passing, revealing her trick for never being lost despite the fact that her sense of direction practically didn't exist. She continued to kick the rock from earlier around on the ground as they walked, humming to herself happily seemingly without a care in the world, despite the fact that they were searching a maze for minotaurs that could pop up at any second and may in fact be hunting them even at that very moment. She had a slightly zoned out look on her face, but a peaceful one.

[Labyrinth Search 5/5]

Edited by Ivory Lotus
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Mention of Gaius' name caught his attention as they wandered without any apparent direction, Freyd taking point with his weapon in hand.  "Oh, you've met Gaius, have you?  He's a good man and was really coming around as a responsible guild member before this whole shadow storm thing hit.  I'm still trying to put together all the pieces on that one, though it seems to have hit everyone pretty hard."  He didn't ask them about their experiences directly, but the those ever-vigilant eyes watched peripherally for any signs or reactions.  Events like Shadow's devouring flood of nothingness tended to leave a lot of trauma in their wake, and these three players seemed young.  It would have taken a toll of some form on each oh them.

"Yes, we're both members of the Firm Anima guild.  Technically, it's a group for crafters, but we've been broadening our skill sets for some time.  We're active and well-organized, and make it our mission to help players across Aincrad deal with threats as best they can - often by helping to supply them with the arms and armor required to do so.  All four captains were on the field against Shadow in the recent floor boss."  A hint of pride shone through as he spoke, though his praise was meant for Raidou, Haine and Kiluia.  It wasn't so long ago that all four of them were no more ready for the horrors of this world than those trailing behind him now.

"Good advice, Astreya, and wisely said.  We've been chasing the left wall since we entered, but our quarry is also mobile.  It may take some time before..."

Freyd's voice trailed off as silence fell like night around them.  The mood and feel of the labyrinth had starkly and suddenly changed and become more menacing.  A cloud of sinister, shimmering dust floated languidly in the few visible beams of light the managed to breach the thicket of weeds and brambles the enclosed the top of the labyrinth walls.  Each player held their breath waiting for something to happen.

Twin gleaming orbs of red manifest like harbingers of malevolence in the darkness ahead of them, momentarily obscured by a puff of steamy breath.  A pair of great, black horns emerged in instant later, polished to a shine and set upon the head of a massive bovine humanoid.  Something thudded, then scraped on the stone behind it, leaving a trailing shower of sparks.  The beast carried a great axe that was taller from haft to head than any one of the players, Freyd included.

Larbrook, whose presence everyone seemed to have forgotten, was the first to speak.  "Govarron.  The Keeper of the Western gate.  Beware.  They say that-"

Freyd had already rushed the giant beast, practically launching his weapon at Govarron and looking like he was just along for the ride.  The mob swung its axe forward, slamming into the black-clad man, and knocking him hard into the adjacent wall.  Freyd bounced off the stony surface with nary a bump or bruise and burst out laughing.

"Funny.  I didn't recall them having evasion.  Oh well.  Have it ladies!"

Spoiler

Post Action | Fling (CD 0/3) (x16, 12 EN): 12 EN - (Rested 1/2, Stamina) = 9 EN   Missed (-2 EN)

ID #188719 | BD: 2+4-1=5 (miss)

ID #188719 | MD: 7-1=6 (hit).  DMG (45-66=1)

Freyd | HP: 899/900 (900-1) | EN: 122/124 (124-2) | DMG: 24 | MIT: 66 | EVA: 1 | ACC: 4 | BH: 45 | LD: 5 | | FLN: 8 | HLY: 8 | V.O.: 90
Ivory Lotus | HP: 410/410 | EN: 56/56 | DMG: 1 | MIT 62
Blueberry | HP: 100/100 | EN: 28/28 | DMG: 4 | MIT 12 | EVA: 2 | BLD 12 | PARA | REC 2 
Astreya | HP: 280/280 | EN: 46/46 | DMG: 8 | MIT: 37 | BH: 4 | ACC: 3 | THORNS 18 | TAUNT

[0,0,0,0] Govarron | HP: 150/150 | DMG: 45 | EVA: 1

 

Edited by Freyd
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When the conversation changed to Gaius, Blue became a bit confused with the words Freyd was saying. "Are you sure we are talking about the same Gaius? Responsible isn't the word I'd use to describe him. He's uh..." A giggle escaped her lips. "Straight to the point." She finished, offering up a smile. However, as Freyd mentioned the storm, her smile faded and her normally electric blue eyes became a dull color. 

The feeling of absolute loneliness. The harsh cold of the void....

It wasn't something she enjoyed recalling. No matter what smile she put forward, the memory was enough to damper her spirits. After having spent enough time in the shadow's depths, she hated being alone. It made her think of the storm. 

 "Let's pick a wall, left or right, and follow it.  It can take awhile, but as long as the walls themselves don't move, we like, totally can't get lost, y'know?

Berry returned to reality. "Being lost can teach you more things. Wandering around without purpose also can let you meet new people! Like I did you guys today!" 

Everyone stopped in front of her, causing her almost to bump into Astreya. She looked forward, where a tall minotaur emerged. "Woah!" She whispered, and before she even realized Freyd was charging in headfirst to take a swing at it. However, The minotaur simply batted him aside. 

"Funny.  I didn't recall them having evasion.  Oh well.  Have it ladies!

Blueberry smiled. "I haven't really been in battle before, but i'll give it my best!" Opening her menu, she pressed to give her access to her weapon. Sprinting forward, she leapt upward into the air, using her speed and light air to gain as much upward momentum as possible. At the peak of her jump, an oversized frying pan with an elongated handle materialized in her handsUsing her downward momentum, she would bring the pan down on the minotaur. To her surprise, the minotaur brought its greataxe over its head, blocking her attack. As the two weapon's collided, the frying pan began to vibrate like crazy. Falling in front of the minotaur, it would glare her down until she escaped behind the party once more. 

"Sorry, I tried!" she told her companions. 

Quote

ID: 188724
BD: 4-1=3 Miss
CD: 4 Recovery does not activate.

Freyd | HP: 899/900 | EN: 122/124 (124-2) | DMG: 24 | MIT: 66 | EVA: 1 | ACC: 4 | BH: 45 | LD: 5 | | FLN: 8 | HLY: 8 | V.O.: 90
Ivory Lotus | HP: 410/410 | EN: 56/56 | DMG: 1 | MIT 62
Blueberry | HP: 100/100 | EN: 27/28 | DMG: 4 | MIT 12 | EVA: 2 | BLD 12 | PARA | REC 2 
Astreya | HP: 280/280 | EN: 46/46 | DMG: 8 | MIT: 37 | BH: 4 | ACC: 3 | THORNS 18 | TAUNT

[0,0,0,0] Govarron | HP: 150/150 | DMG: 45 | EVA: 1

 

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The young woman shared her smiles with Ivory then- having been glad to have made yet another friend here.  She'd need to ask Freyd how the Friending thing worked so she could be sure to have the girl available in the future if they wanted to hang out or do something.  When you lived in a game world like Sword Art: Online, you couldn't just power level all the time- you had to find some ways to have fun, too.  If you didn't relax at all, you'd find yourself wound up too tightly to focus properly, which was way taking time to just sort of chill and have fun with your friends (and find a way to add them to a Friends List!) was something that Astreya was a big proponent of.

She grinned as Freyd noted that she had spoken well regarding the maze, before both Ivory and Blueberry made mention of enjoying just the random going-about in the maze and just letting things happen as they may.  The dark-haired woman's mouth opened in something amounting to both shock and concern both.  "No, no no!  What if you get lost in here for, like, ever?" she responded, frowning slightly.  There was a decided difference between going through life with an aimless direction and going into a maze with the same aimlessness.  One might be willing to say that life was little more than a maze, but Astreya wasn't all that big on symbolism.

She kept note of the word 'Guild.'  That was the word she'd been thinking of earlier when she couldn't quite remember it, and so having it handy would be quite helpful...

But the Hoya, or the Minotaur, or whoever this thing was began to make its presence known in the darkness of the maze, and Astreya felt her throat constrict slightly, even with the four of them here, it seemed like this could be quite dangerous.  It was huge in size, and the great axe it carried was enormous- the woman swallowed slightly, and then very nearly jumped out of her skin as Larbrook began to speak before Freyd launched himself forward then, and seemed more than ready to take this down in a single strike... but the brute managed to knock Freyd off to the side, earning nothing but laughter from the black-garbed fellow.  

At that, much of Astreya's anxiety faded, and she exhaled slowly as Blueberry leapt past her and aimed to do a powerful overhand strike with a... frying pan?  "Wha..?" Astreya commented, but saw the minotaur begin to lift its axe up to parry the other woman- which meant that its body would be wide open.  "Thanks for the opening!" she called out as she darted forward, her sapphire eyes narrowed as the weapon in her hands began to glow as she triggered the sword art.  "One!  Two!  Three!  Four!" she called, each strike coming in at odd angles- but unlike Blueberry, she didn't retreat.  She was planning to be a tank- now was a good time to get used to being on the front lines.  "I declare a thumb war!" she finished.

Spoiler

 

Post Action | Lightning (CD 0/2) (x7, 9 EN, Stun):  Hit (-9 EN)

ID #188952 | BD: 5+3-1=7 (Hit!) 8x7 = 56 Damage + STUN

Freyd | HP: 899/900 | EN: 122/124| DMG: 24 | MIT: 66 | EVA: 1 | ACC: 4 | BH: 45 | LD: 5 | | FLN: 8 | HLY: 8 | V.O.: 90
Ivory Lotus | HP: 410/410 | EN: 56/56 | DMG: 1 | MIT 62
Blueberry | HP: 100/100 | EN: 27/28 | DMG: 4 | MIT 12 | EVA: 2 | BLD 12 | PARA | REC 2 
Astreya | HP: 280/280 | EN: 37/46 | DMG: 8 | MIT: 37 | BH: 4 | ACC: 3 | THORNS 18 | TAUNT

[0,0,0,2] Govarron | HP: 94/150 | DMG: 45 | EVA: 1
STUNNED

 

 

Edited by Astreya
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Ivory smiled to herself as they continued further into the maze. Astreya seemed to be a little confused, but that was okay. You couldn't be lost if you didn't have a destination. She wasn't going to try to explain it to her though. She would basically just be repeating herself at that point. She twirled a strand of her hair in her fingers as she looked all around them at the walls of the maze, the floor, and the overgrown ceiling. This place had a strange sort of beauty despite the air of unease that seemed to hang over the party and grew stronger the longer they continued on.

Ivory couldn't help but let out a little squeak at the appearance of the minotaur. The creature was way way scarier than she had expected. She was comforted momentarily as Freyd leapt at it with an incredible amount of confidence in himself. The comfort was dashed aside as the minotaur smacked the leader of their party out of the air and into the wall. The ensuing laughter from Freyd only caused her more worry. The poor man was obviously so injured that he had gone into shock. She couldnt allow herself to be distracted however, this was a dangerous battle for sure. Her eyes flicked to the side for a moment, catching a glimpse of color.

"is a that a flower growing on that vine?"

She shook her head. Right, they were fighting...

The young woman raised her hands into the air dramatically, her gold and purple embroidered cloak flapping around her dramatically. "Behold my power!" She shouted. "EXPLOSION!!!" What happened next was definitely not an explosion, nor was it all that visibly impressive. Her hands glowed a dark blue as an aura of the same color faintly appeared around each member of their party. 

Spoiler

Post Action | [Rank 4 First Aid Mod] Barrier(CD: 0/2) (15 EN): -15% Damage to party for 1 turn

Freyd | HP: 899/900 | EN: 122/124| DMG: 24 | MIT: 66 | EVA: 1 | ACC: 4 | BH: 45 | LD: 5 | | FLN: 8 | HLY: 8 | V.O.: 90
Ivory Lotus | HP: 410/410 | EN: 41/56 | DMG: 1 | MIT 62
Blueberry | HP: 100/100 | EN: 27/28 | DMG: 4 | MIT 12 | EVA: 2 | BLD 12 | PARA | REC 2 
Astreya | HP: 280/280 | EN: 37/46 | DMG: 8 | MIT: 37 | BH: 4 | ACC: 3 | THORNS 18 | TAUNT

[0,0,0,2] Govarron | HP: 94/150 | DMG: 45 | EVA: 1
STUNNED

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Freyd was too busy giggling at the absurdity of their situation, and could even manage a proper stance, let alone take a decent swing.  The giant, hairy beast was so staggered by Blueberry's strike that it toppled forward like an improperly balanced statue and smooshed it bovine snout face-first into the ground just as his wobbly staff swung overhead.

"Well, so much for that," he muttered to himself, under his breath.  "Aren't you glad I came along?  Apparently, I'd have a hard time hitting the broad side of a barn at the moment."  He knew that it was likely his old nemesis at work, that being Cardinal's random number generator program.  The damn thing never cut him any slack, and he was growing weary of being bound to its dictates.  Though a smile a remain plastered on his face, on the inside, he was feeling rather unmotivated to do much of anything since the raid had ended.  Maybe his lack of passion was affecting his aim?

Spoiler

Freyd regains +1 EN
Freyd regains 45 HP from BH
Fling (CD 1/3) 

Post Action | Boom (CD 0/2) (x10, 8 EN): 8 EN - (Rested 2/2, Stamina) = 5 EN  Missed (-2 EN)

ID #189033 | BD: 1 (miss)

Govarron is stunned and takes no action.

Freyd | HP: 900/900 (899+45) | EN: 122/124 (122+1-2) | DMG: 24 | MIT: 66 | EVA: 1 | ACC: 4 | BH: 45 | LD: 5 | | FLN: 8 | HLY: 8 | V.O.: 90
Ivory Lotus | HP: 410/410 | EN: 41/56 | DMG: 1 | MIT 62
Blueberry | HP: 100/100 | EN: 27/28 | DMG: 4 | MIT 12 | EVA: 2 | BLD 12 | PARA | REC 2 
Astreya | HP: 280/280 | EN: 37/46 | DMG: 8 | MIT: 37 | BH: 4 | ACC: 3 | THORNS 18 | TAUNT

[0,0,0,2] Govarron | HP: 94/150 | DMG: 45 | EVA: 1
STUNNED

 

Edited by Freyd
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A moment of rest would ensue as her new friends made progress on the fight. While it didn't seem the boy was making much work, they had managed to bring the health of the creature down a little. "My turn!" She called out, darting straight in unlike her high attack last time. Swinging her pan in a sweeping motion, the cookware struck in the wide area of a fan, making her attack almost sure to hit. The pan slammed into the stumbling minotaur and dealing a fair amount of damage. 

Sticking out her tongue in a teasing manner, she had asserted her presence on the battlefield. "I think we can finish it here!" she called out in a motivational manner. If she had managed to use the abilities on her weapon, it would have been far more helpful. Her eyes floated over to Ivory, who seemed to be granting them some form of forcefield cover. "She's a healer too?" Blueberry thought. Blue lost the ability to heal with the update, so most of her points were simply sitting and waiting. 

The light blue bracelets on her wrists gave off a soft blue refreshing light, recovering a few of her energy points, however Blue didn't notice this. 

 

Quote

ID: 189183
BD: 7-1= 6 Hit!
CD: 10 -> Recovery Activated! +2 EN
DMG: 4*5(Sweep)=20 DMG. 5+2=7 EN. 

Freyd | HP: 900/900 (899+45) | EN: 122/124 (122+1-2) | DMG: 24 | MIT: 66 | EVA: 1 | ACC: 4 | BH: 45 | LD: 5 | | FLN: 8 | HLY: 8 | V.O.: 90
Ivory Lotus | HP: 410/410 | EN: 41/56 | DMG: 1 | MIT 62
Blueberry | HP: 100/100 | EN: 23/28 | DMG: 4 | MIT 12 | EVA: 2 | BLD 12 | PARA | REC 2 
Astreya | HP: 280/280 | EN: 37/46 | DMG: 8 | MIT: 37 | BH: 4 | ACC: 3 | THORNS 18 | TAUNT

[0,0,1,2] Govarron | HP: 74/150 | DMG: 45 | EVA: 1

Quote

Cooldowns:

Crash(x5): (1/1) Cooldown over!
Sweep(x5 AOE): (0/2) 

 

 

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ID# 189184 results:
Battle: 9+3-1 = 11 (Hit!)
Damage: (8+1)*8 = 72!

The young woman had landed and stayed right up in the Minotaur's grill, not willing to back up or anything.  If worse came to worst, she could probably tank this thing for as long as need be.  She had more than a few healing items, and-

Suddenly she was caught by Ivory yelling out 'Explosion' and glanced over, her eyes wide.  What?  Was there some sort of magic in this game?  She hadn't heard of anything like that bef-

Her thoughts came to an abrupt halt as she blinked, tilting her head to the side at the rather... calming blue energy that washed over her.  "Um..." she began, about to speak when Freyd missed yet again.  She couldn't tell if maybe he was doing this on purpose to help them get more combat experience, but his incessant giggling at the situation didn't really help matters any.  "Freyd you goofball, come on!" she called over to him before the young woman cheered at Blue's strike.  "Let's keep up the momentum!" she called out.  

She shifted forward, turning her back to the Hoya for a moment to activate the Art as she turned, bringing the weapon down with a full powered swing, cleaving through a horn and nearly taking the head with it as well.  "Almost there!" she called out.
 


Freyd | HP: 900/900 (899+45) | EN: 122/124 (122+1-2) | DMG: 24 | MIT: 66 | EVA: 1 | ACC: 4 | BH: 45 | LD: 5 | | FLN: 8 | HLY: 8 | V.O.: 90
Ivory Lotus | HP: 410/410 | EN: 41/56 | DMG: 1 | MIT 62
Blueberry | HP: 100/100 | EN: 23/28 | DMG: 4 | MIT 12 | EVA: 2 | BLD 12 | PARA | REC 2 
Astreya | HP: 280/280 | EN: 38/46 | DMG: 8 | MIT: 37 | BH: 4 | ACC: 3 | THORNS 18 | TAUNT
[Backrush 0/2]
[Lightning 1/2]

[0,0,1,4] Govarron | HP: 2/150 | DMG: 45 | EVA: 1

Edited by Astreya
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Posted (edited)

 

ID# 189185 | Battle: 8-1 = 7 Hit! |

Damage: 1

The healer raised her finger to her chin thoughtfully. She had wanted to scare the minotaur with her shout, and it looked like it had worked! The great beast was simply too scared to do anything, not even attacking yet. She knew that she could be intimidating, but was still very impressed with herself. She should try it again, maybe she would scare the one horned monstrosity into running away and then they wouldn't have to hurt it. She didn't like hurting things, even the enemies in this game.

She moved to raise her hands again, planning to dramatically flourish and cast another support spell of some kind. However, her foot had somehow stepped on the edge of her cloak during her earlier theatrics, and upon trying to raise her hands she instead tripped, stumbling forward and hurtling towards the minotaur cartwheeling her arms in an attempt to catch her balance screaming the whole time, finally smashing head first into the creatures muscular abdomen before flopping face first onto the ground not moving.

Spoiler

 

Freyd | HP: 900/900 (899+45) | EN: 122/124 (122+1-2) | DMG: 24 | MIT: 66 | EVA: 1 | ACC: 4 | BH: 45 | LD: 5 | | FLN: 8 | HLY: 8 | V.O.: 90
Ivory Lotus | HP: 410/410 | EN: 41/56 | DMG: 1 | MIT 62
Blueberry | HP: 100/100 | EN: 23/28 | DMG: 4 | MIT 12 | EVA: 2 | BLD 12 | PARA | REC 2 
Astreya | HP: 280/280 | EN: 38/46 | DMG: 8 | MIT: 37 | BH: 4 | ACC: 3 | THORNS 18 | TAUNT
[Backrush 0/2]
[Lightning 1/2]

[0,0,1,4] Govarron | HP: 1/150 | DMG: 45 | EVA: 1

 

 

Edited by Ivory Lotus
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"Alright.  Enough of this."

Sliding the end of his staff behind the minotaur's hoof, he yanked upward, sending the creature sprawling onto its back.  Even as it fell, the stick of death pivoted in his grip, bringing the opposite end down to spear the beast in the chest.  Not normally a very effective maneuver, circumstances changed an instant later as the seal over the void that was Freyd's weapon pull back and drove pure nothingness into the thing's torso.  Its eyes froze even as they bulged with terror, the digital mesh of its body decomposing below and getting sucked into the screeching vacuum that had been exposed.  It sealed itself an instant later, once the last lingering mote of light had been extinguished.

Freyd, for his part, stood up straight, holding a perfectly black staff where one a mighty minotaur had been, his cowl dipped down to stare at the innocent tip planted against the stone floor.

"Well done," he said, softly. His voice simultaneously solemn and cold.  Internally, all he could feel was the numbing, reminiscent darkness that had swallowed Aincrad whole, and a doubt given voice echoed loudly in his mind.

Dear God, have I brought it with me?

Spoiler

Freyd regains +1 EN
Fling (CD 2/3) 
Boom
 (CD 1/2)

Post Action | Basic attack (-1 EN)

ID #18933 | BD: 6+4=10 (hit, Fallen +8).  DMG (1*32=32)

Freyd | HP: 900/900 | EN: 122/124 (122+1-1) | DMG: 24 | MIT: 66 | EVA: 1 | ACC: 4 | BH: 45 | LD: 5 | | FLN: 8 | HLY: 8 | V.O.: 90
Ivory Lotus | HP: 410/410 | EN: 41/56 | DMG: 1 | MIT 62
Blueberry | HP: 100/100 | EN: 23/28 | DMG: 4 | MIT 12 | EVA: 2 | BLD 12 | PARA | REC 2 
Astreya | HP: 280/280 | EN: 38/46 | DMG: 8 | MIT: 37 | BH: 4 | ACC: 3 | THORNS 18 | TAUNT

[1,0,1,4] Govarron | HP: 0/150 | DMG: 45 | EVA: 1 (1-32)

 

Edited by Freyd
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As their teamwork brought down their opponent, Blueberry would beam with excitement. Spinning her frying pan in her hands, a blue light would flash and it would no longer be found in her hands. "Ba ba da da, da da da!" She began to create her own fanfare before turning to her temporary comrades. 

"Thats was fun! I didn't get to fight the way I wanted to, but it was still good to bonk things!" 

Not being able to support was unnerving, but she would just hold onto her points until she could. She just needed to reach a higher level. "For starters though, you guys need to learn to pose when the song beings!" A random cracker was brought form her pocket and she began to munch on it. 

Then, as quickly was the pink-haired player arrived she was gone, set off into maze. She never looked back to her companions once, not even taking the time to say goodbye. She would see them again and she was safe to add them to her long mental list of friends. 

Thread Completed
Blueberry Receives: 200+500=700 EXP, 100 Col, Hoya of the West
Astreya Receives: 400+500=900 EXP, 100 Col, Hoya of the West
Ivory Lotus Receives:  400+500=900 EXP, 100 Col, Hoya of the West
Freyd Receives: 800 EXP


Note:  Astreya needs a roll for US. 

NIGHT:

ID: 190205 | LD: 4 | Astreya's US Roll. 
ID: 190204 | LD: 2 | Freyd's US Roll.

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