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 [HC Event] Nightmare

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Sailor Uranus
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PostSubject: [HC Event] Nightmare   14th January 2018, 4:28 pm

Dreamworld
Background Summary:
 
Quote :
Setting****
This takes place within the Dreamworld; characters may know the general rules before they enter, but everything within the dream seems real, so being tricked or fooled by what they see is the norm; constant reminders that it is a dream should be made in character.

Note to players: If the character dies in the dreamworld, they may die outside the real world.

What is a Hardcore Event?
Event Rules and Information:
 
Event Begins January 14.
Reminders:

  • Pay attention to the story. Read every post so you don't miss anything. Major Plot Points will be delivered through me - either via DM Quote within a post or bolded within my character posts. I will announce, for example,w hen we find objects/people, and what things look like when prompted. I will arrange for enemies to fight and I'll handle the combat system to determine hit/miss and damage dealt/healing. 
    Needless to say, if you don't pay attention to the story, your character's reactions / ideas / etc. may be out of place and will be treated as such by other characters. All RP Section rules are in effect for this HC Event, including the rule that you cannot go back and edit the substance of a post once someone has posted after you. Read Carefully. 
  • Activity Rule: Post once every 48 hours or your character will fade from the Dreamworld and expelled from the Event. The Activity Rule is in place to keep things moving, which can't happen if one character is waiting on another to post! If an emergency comes up IRL and you need an extra day, tell me and I'll carry your character for that third day.
  • Keep watch on Discord: OOC messages and game announcements will be made there (and I mean ooc chatter and who doesn't like that? ... if it's you, remember I @everyone when I make big announcements). 
  • Random Active Time Events can happen! - if the majority of players are active in the Discord Channel I may spring Random Events on the characters that players will need to react to within a few hours time or something bad happens! These will always be announced in the Discord conversation with an @everyone attached; discord will be open for questions/comments/concerns and will always come with the caveat that if you are online but unable to post, arrange with a player in Discord to move your character for you; if you are not online at the time that player will be me. Instructions will need to be followed else consequences are wordlessly accepted for not following any outlined specific directions.
  • This is an Advanced Event. All posts outside battle are required to be 100 words or more. 
  • Bold battle choices and actions that you would like me as the DM to respond to. Want to ask an NPC a question? Bold it~ Want to attack a tree? Bold it~ Want to attack an enemy with magic? Bold the attack name~ And remember please~ if your character didn't attend the "Decreasing ability time" panel and their ability has a title, they'll have to say it for best effectiveness~

Characters in the Nightmare

Character Sheets
Stats


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It would be risky. 

Somnus admitted she had never taken more than one person into someone's dreamscape with her, but this method... could be possible. To get them all on the same wavelength first with a simultaneous daydream, then settle them to sleep, and collect their consciousnesses like picking up sticks and whisking them off into a dreamwalk - it could be possible, especially if they already share strong bonds or keep their goals in mind: to defeat Chaos and rescue the captive consciousness of those sleeping senshi. 

The hard part would be in breaking into the dreams; upon thinking further on it, Somnus theorized the consciousness behind it was swapping dream "owners" to keep it constantly moving; the dream she entered - the planet Valdis and her friends had entered - was probably generated by all their friends that were caught there, the scape changing owners as they moved through to make it harder to break into. The force she felt was the conscious mind in charge forcing her out in order to keep them dreaming. Why was anyone's guess - their energies weren't being stolen... but that was second to the problem at hand.

They had to wake them up.

To wake them up, they had to find the consciousness that was controlling the dreamscape and defeat it - or else, make it loosen its grip enough to pull everyone else out.

But breaking into those dreams with the defense in place would probably result in their just getting tossed out and having to start all over again. 

... Unless they didn't try to break into an existing dream.

Somnus
"Once we're in I could try to find it's consciousness," Somnus stated, her voice quiet but tentatively assured, "If it's connecting multiple dreams together, there could be a web the information travels on centered on its host - if we followed it back into the host's consciousness we could destroy it there." Her deep purple eyes slid over to closed door, obviously implicating Sailor Aegle, who was still under watch in an office space in another part of the hotel; she blinked and returned her attention to the rest of the small group gathered. Potentially she could try this alone, but having more minds connected together could make it harder to be thrown out or overpowered - and with something that dangerous going around in there, she liked the idea of people watching her back. Still... she better liked just facing the problem head on. 

Sailor Aegle had not been able to detransform and their usual methods of determining if someone were a senshi were muddled with there being so many in such close quarters - they couldn't for certain say she was what she said she was. Somnus had half a mind to Beam her and just jump in without permission and see for herself! ...but the other half cautioned that if it wasn't Sailor Aegle, jumping in there could mean getting trapped, just like everyone else, and then they may have no way of rescuing everybody else. She'd have to convince everyone to go there first with her for backup, and that... she'd just have to bring that up again. Regardless, she didn't like the idea of going under with Aegle's mind free, and she couldn't set a daydream and dreamwalk - she had tried, the daydream always fell apart. 

"What do we want to do about Sailor Aegle?"

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   14th January 2018, 8:55 pm

Sailor Roshar

Roshar, again, felt impatient as Somnus explained the plan that Shadow had suggested earlier. She leaned against the wall, feeling like a slight outsider to the group as she learned that several of them had actually been team mates on their first missions and conscripted no less. It wasn't a pleasant thought but war was war afterall.

Somunus's plan seemed like a good plan and honestly, the only plan that was plausible at this point. Somnus had a connection to that world, the one Koru had talked about. He had called in Shadesmar but Roshar believed that must be the name the Spren had given it. She had heard other people in her travels refer to it as the cognitive realm and now here, the dream world. Though, from what Somnus had described, it sounded more like a nightmare for those involved.

Hopefully the bond Roshar felt for Ninlil, despite its short time, would be strong enough. She may have just started to get to know the girl but storms she wasn't about to let her die either. Not by some cowardly Chaos force that refused to fight them face on. She ground her teeth thinking about it.

Unfortunately, Somnus's idea to put this Aegle paradox into a daydream to distract her hadn't worked and inevitably, the question came up with how to deal with her. There was an option no one had suggested yet.

"Has anyone considered just knocking her out?" she chimed in, attempting to keep a small smirk off her face, because for some reason in her mind, it was kind of hilarious that was possibly the only option they had.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   14th January 2018, 10:18 pm



Hadley had been glad to hear that she might be able to join Somnus in this new plan. She'd do anything to help Ari and the others come back to the real world. Even if the tightness of anxiety clenched at her chest. This would be the first time she'd face an enemy without Ari at her side.

It would be strange to not have that familiar reassuring presence. Strange to not have someone beside her who was so finely tuned in to similar powers as herself. Strange to feel, in a way, alone.

But no, that wasn't fair. She had Hemera, Nyx and Alshain. And she had quite enjoyed what little time she'd spent with Somnus. And there was Crysdal too!

Well... sort of.

Hadley frowned as Somnus brought up the question of the potential doppelganger. A part of her wanted to pipe in that of course this was the real Crysdal. She had the same smile, and the same pretty eyes. Surely no imposter could replicate such personal details.

But there were others who were very convinced that this Crysdal was a fake. And if that were true, then it was a threat that couldn't be completely ignored, no matter how much her heart wanted to protest.

However, when a senshi with bright orange and yellows gave her own suggestion, a suggestion that consisted of knocking Crysdal out cold, Hadley couldn't stop herself from speaking up. "We can't do that!" The words came out a bit more alarmed than she would have wanted, but she still believed them to be true. Doppelganger or not, it didn't matter. "There's still a chance she could be the real Crysdal." And Hadley wasn't going to stand idly by while her friend was attacked. She glanced at the brightly colored senshi, uncertain what to make of a person who would attack without proof.

She went on in a calmer tone as she looked away, voice soft. "What if we brought her with us?" she asked, directing her question specifically to Somnus. "If she was there, would that help us to figure out which one is the fake somehow?"

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   14th January 2018, 10:48 pm

So this is what it feels like to be in your shoes..

Despite having wanted to distance himself from the memories of Sailor Enyalius, Shadow found himself contemplating how his present position paralleled that of the mighty warrior. Both were touched by Chaos at some point in their lives, both favored the use of swords, and each of them was particularly strong and robust. They also shared a tendency for finding themselves in some position of responsibility, spoken or otherwise, for other sailor guardians. Did she ever feel anything like his present anxiety when considering the lives of their associates?

Roshar's open question dragged Shadow's attention back to their current predicament. The young lady who was able to comfort Somnus in place of his own shortcomings immediately took exception to the comment. Now was the time to speak up before tempers flared and their common goal was threatened.

Shadow ran a hand through his hair, clearly displaying his opinion of their predicament with a plain frown. Perhaps he could help them channel their anger at the awful situation, instead of risking those emotions being levied at each other. "I have thought about it, and I don't like either result. Having Aegle as a loose end is dangerous, but Sailor Valdis is correct to say she might be genuine. What we've uncovered so far doesn't affirm her identity as a senshi or an impostor. I would expect a fraudster to retaliate if we put them to sleep, but if she's real.. then we're making Aegle a bed alongside the other victims."

He liked having a plan, a clear answer for how to proceed. This was not one of those times. Fumbling through his surface thoughts, Shadow searched the eyes of the gathered senshi for an answer to his next question.

"Do we know anyone who's close to Aegle that isn't trapped in the dream?"
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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   15th January 2018, 7:29 am



When the group exited, the rust-skinned woman with the pale cloud of hair followed, gliding along behind them. They moved with purpose, and purpose was exactly what she sought. Xtal-Diamante caught the end of Somnus' statement and question, but she offered no reply. She didn't know that anything was going with Sailor Aegle, after all. It was slightly surprising to hear the stranger suggest "knocking out" their blonde teammate, often leader, but Sailor Valdis immediately spoke out against it. Now they spoke about "genuine" and "fake" in reference to the girl...

This was another one of those times when there would be a lot of talking, wasn't it?

Sailor Xtal-Diamante settled into a more comfortable standing position and waited for all of that to be over.
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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   15th January 2018, 7:35 am



Hemera stood silently beside her sister, watching the group discuss a plan. Plans were not her strong suit, so she had opted to remain quiet, but it was obvious from her endless fidgeting that she was having trouble with keeping still and waiting until a decision was made. She itched with the desire to do something about this already. When a senshi she didn’t recognize suggested knocking out Aegle, she looked up worriedly, not liking the idea at all. Valdis spoke what she felt, but then again… there were two Aegles somehow. Hemera wanted desperately to believe the one they had was the right one, but what if they were wrong? They’d been duped by that “kindly old man” before and Valdis almost died because of his potions. She had learned the hard way that they couldn’t take people’s words at face value anymore.

The man she also didn’t recognize spoke next and asked if anyone knew someone close to Aegle. “Well, we’re all pretty close to her,” she pointed out, gesturing at Valdis and the others. “But I believe the one who knows her best is Sailor Alshain.”

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   15th January 2018, 7:50 am

Sailor Roshar

Roshar blinked at the little red-head's response, The mischief from her slight smirk disappeared and she gave a half hearted chuckle.

"Relax, kid. It was just a suggestion," she replied, shrugging her shoulders as she listened to the rest of Valdis's suggestion. She had forgotten that some of these girls were close to Aegle. They had just the right just as anyone to be worried about their friend.

Shadow posed an interesting question which in turn made her curious about another thing. If this girl was fake, where was the real one's body? Maybe the double Somnus saw was the chaos entity manifesting as a familiar figure to a handful of the comatose Senshi, since apparently several of them were all very familiar with each other. Another senshi, her fuku similar in colors to Roshar, looked just as impatient and Roshar currently felt. Her suggestion answered Shadow's question so time to bring up another.

"Look, I don't know much about you girls and your bonds and all that but something's been bothering me, if that Aegle chick was a fake, where is the real one's body? Someone would have found it by now right?"

Roshar knew that probably wasn't a question the others wanted to hear but it is what it is after all. She was itching to just jump in the dream world, see what it was like but the idea of falling into a coma like the ones out in the temporary infirmary didn't seem like a good outcome either.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   15th January 2018, 8:08 am

Somnus
Roshar caught her attention immediately - the 'knocking Aegle out cold' option was one she'd been turning around since she offered to put her to sleep, but Venus's refusal continued to stand - not for the morals of it, but for the risk. She'd be all for it if there was a guarantee it would be done right and put her consciousness right out, but if it just sent her to deep sleep it could end up making things worse if Aegle was the culprit. If she were this powerful while awake, while splitting mental resources... She frowned, considering how to bring that up when Valdis replied and saved her the trouble - for now, anyway. The conviction of the redhead's compassion would probably stave off a direct attack on Aegle's body anytime soon. 

Her question caught Somnus, making her consider an idea she had been hesitant to think about: taking that consciousness with them. On the one hand, it'd be convenient to know exactly what that consciousness was doing at all times. Who knew - maybe once she pulled them along they'd revert to their true form? But getting all of that settle would mean that if that did happen, whatever it was would be ready for them -- Shadow spoke, adding his own take, and she listened for any new information, but dismissed most of it as things she already knew, except for the last part, which revealed to her that he wasn't the type to sacrifice one to potentially save many others. As he asked for information about people close to Aegle, Somnus's eyes immediately flicked to Nyx and Hemera, who had come to her defense after the revelation that she was in the dream, and Valdis, who had just ardently defended her, and then to Alshain, who was dressed in a nearly identical fashion, and went back to considering Valdis's notion of bringing her with them as Hemera answered his question.

She had thought down the same path twice, unable to concentrate as Roshar asked her question - she answered quickly and factually - that part, at least, she had thought about already. "It's kind of like body-borrowing," she stated simply. "If it can link consciousnesses together, it could potentially push her consciousness aside and take control of her body while the real Aegle is caught up in the dream." It was something... she had been wanting to try. Not on the good guys, of course. Just the bad guys. She just didn't know how long she'd be able to manage something like that, or if she even could, but if she could think it up and this thing had done more than she thought possible, there was no telling -- 

But she had to get back on track and concentrate, and no matter where the conversation went, she figured she'd be distracted by voices, so she started talking. Thinking out loud should help. "If we took "Aegle"'s consciousness with us," she mused, not loud enough to override the conversation but loud enough to be heard if people were listening - and included quotation mark hand gestures around the threat's name. She cocked her head, interrupting her original sentence to get the obvious out there, " - if she's innocent it wouldn't really matter either way, she'd just be able to help us as a teammate and if we ran into the Chaos entity she could help fight it; the problem is if she's not innocent - if she is that thing, there's a chance that when I pull her with us she could keep the Aegle shape and continue to act innocent until she sees fit to attack us. And if it can't keep the Aegle shape up, it'd know exactly when we were coming for it and just attack us the moment I attempt to pull her along." She paused, obviously worried, but kept talking, "If we were well prepared though... if we took her in last and were ready to blast her, it could be over in moments and everyone could be saved without having to go so far into the dreamscape. And if she continues to look like their friend and act like their friend, we can still keep an eye on her and blast her the moment she messes up - get her before she gets us. ..." she paused again, brows furrowing, "We'd know where she was and what she was doing and wouldn't have to watch our backs in case she gets wind of what we're doing and goes in after us... but she could just as easily take this as a victory stroke. ... It's a big risk..." and she didn't know yet whether she thought it was worth it.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   15th January 2018, 9:34 am



Nyx glanced at her sister - she could imagine exactly how much she must be enjoying the whole discussing things over and over again and getting nowhere as usual. Well, even she, she had to admit, was getting impatient. This was what they always did, and it never felt like it was particularly useful to the final outcome. They should learn to think and act faster - and smarter. Easier said than done, of course, but...

Even though she did not feel good about Hemera tagging along in this, when whatever took hold of their friends was strong enough to overpower them all at once... She did not bother to raise any objections to it. She knew it would be a useless effort. She'd just have to go in with her and do their best. They were stronger together, she had to remind herself, but after those circumstances...

But what if she couldn't get in? Somnus had said that they needed a close bond with someone in the dream. A close friend or a lover... Sure, they had gotten friendly over the time, but it's not as if they were besties or anything... Valdis would make it in no doubt, be it for being the former or the latter - she still wasn't sure and supposed it wasn't important either - and her sister... She was always able to connect with others better than her. What if she got in while Nyx stayed out?

She closed her eyes, letting out a deep sigh and attempted to return her thoughts to the issue at hand. "We should take her with us." She felt a bit self-conscious all of a sudden, speaking out somewhat suddenly, but continued. "It's risky, but I don't see another way. What if we find the impostor in there? Could we really attack, when there would still be the possibility that she was the real one? Or if the one out here is the fake one, are we that confident that they will be confined in a room that easily, given what they have managed so far?"

"Our best bet is to bring the two of them together... If we ever manage to figure out who is the real one, that might be our chance."

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   15th January 2018, 2:33 pm

Alshain had already gone up to see Chaldys about the shield orb when things had gone, well south.  Again.  She helped the others find and locate the bodies, had taken quick note of Aegle's apparent awakeness (now being called into question) and gone about doing what needed to be done.  Now things weren't so easy, because the universe hated them (even if she had been brought back it still felt as if it was only to torture her more).  

"Two options, either that is Aegle in the other room or she is in the dream and there's someone possibly in her body.  It's no surprise that she couldn't show her sailor crystal or detransform, we'd only been senshi for a short time before this whole war pulled us into it and we've been transformed the entire time"  She looked to Somnus who seemed to be the only one who knew anything about the situation's rules.  "I could question her and see if it's her consciousness, unless the entity has the ability to access her memories, do you think they would?"  Even as she asked the question she moved towards the door, intending to begin anyways.  If this Aegle couldn't answer her questions then it was mute point.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   16th January 2018, 6:57 am

Somnus
Nyx, then, was for it, offering the flip side she hadn't thought through to see; if they were hesitant about attacking physical Aegle, they'd be just as hesitant to attack dreamscape Aegle if or when they came across her, especially considering what could happen if it were actually her that they attacked. Somnus's head twitched forward in a nod, her thumb and forefinger perched on her lips as she thought and listened to the rest of the group. Alshain's summary and subsequent question gave her a little pause. "It's possible?" she replied, shrugging her shoulders minutely, "When I'm in someone's dream I don't have access to all that, but if it's in her head there's no telling what it does and doesn't know or what it does or doesn't have access to. Earlier they - " she indicated Nyx and Hemera "said that she knew things only the real Aegle would know, but," she shrugged again, "it could've been picking up on social cues or something."

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   16th January 2018, 9:38 am

According to Sailor Alshain, she and Aegle had been recently conscripted into the Sailor War and were consistently employed against the recent swell of Chaos incursions. Just how much stress did these two have to endure together in such a short span of time?

The skeptic's eyes darted towards the door, then to Alshain with a slow nod of the head. Whether or not her proposed inquiry would prove fruitful, the dutiful senshi's suggestion had nonetheless made a good impression. "If I was to go in there.." He briefly raised his hands, bringing them together so that the palms faced inward and were roughly parallel to one another. The next motion from the man was a brief gesticulation, a drop of the hands to visually indicate emphasis as he finished his sentence. "I'd consider how she answers your questions, as well as the answers themselves."

Despite his words, Shadow had no actual intention to go and observe Aegle during the inquiry. Whether or not Valdis and the colorful duo whose names he'd yet to learn would accompany Alshain, that was likely to be a deeply personal talk. He was a stranger, a foreign presence that would tarnish the end result of their questioning.
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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   16th January 2018, 10:02 am

Great so then they weren't entirely sure what the impostrr could or could not know.  Wait... actual information would be easier for the impostor to find if they knew they needed to look for it and actually had access to that information.  However, if they didn't know they needed to be looking for certain information, then maybe....

"I have an idea, but I need to be the one to do it, I'm going to need some trust on this."  She didn't want to explain her plan out loud, never knew who was listening or if there were others working with their current inconvenience dream take over.  Alshain moved to enter the room where Aegle was currently being held.

OOC:
 

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   16th January 2018, 1:18 pm

DM wrote:
Alshain has left the room.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   16th January 2018, 1:34 pm



Could it be that easy? It was never that easy. She was not quite positive that Alshain's plan, whatever it was, would provide any sort of conclusive evidence about Aegle's true identity. And if they're not entirely sure, they couldn't neither attack nor trust her.

But it was worth a shot, if anything. The girl was closest to Aegle, so if she thought she might be able to figure something out...

She just hoped they wouldn't take much longer before getting into action. Sure, it's not like she was looking forward to entering that nightmare or whatever it was, but it's not like they had unlimited time... Things could take a turn for the worse at any moment.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   16th January 2018, 2:15 pm

Sailor Roshar

Eyebrows cocked in curiosity, Roshar watched as Alshain, whom she was starting to remember from one of the panels (that she may or may not have taken a nap in), left the room to carry out her plan.  Well, at least she was a senshi of action!  Better than this lot, sitting here planning and plotting. What good it did when in battle you needed to be quick and on your feet. What good is planning when you were about to head into the unknown?

"I hope her plan works because we need to stop chattering here like a gaggle of light-eyes and get moving before it's too storming late to save these girls and they are cursed to damnation," Roshar grumbled after the door shut behind Alshain. She made sure the tone of her voice reflected the annoyance she felt at their delay in taking action. She knew she had to learn to work on a team better, but it was so hard when all the team did was talk about what to do rather than just doing it.  If they were scared they needed to man up, wait no, Senshi up and get their warrior butts in there to get the job done.

She made her way to sit on an unoccupied chair. Her posture wasn't ladylike in the least, legs slightly spread and leaning back, slouching into the chair and soon Roshar found herself trying to bite her thumbnail through her glove as her mind began to wonder. She observed her now saliva dampened cloth and frowned, recalling memories of Mren trying to teach her patience and the art of the deal. The merchant had tried to show how to debate artfully with their buyer in order to get the best profit and satisfied customer. Though storming good it did with how some of the light-eyes treated them regardless.  Somehow Mren managed to have a loyal followiing, even among a few of the high princes in the war camps. Looking wistfully at the ceiling, she wished she had listened better to the man. His lessons finally looked like they had a place in her life and she had ignorantly pushed them aside.

Normally Roshar wouldn't be thinking about home. However, with the situation growing more dire by the second and all this excessive waiting, she was getting grumpy and restless. When that happened, she turned to thoughts of home and her old life. Was Roshar safe? Had the knights been able to hold back Chaos while she travelled? Queen Tiamat had promised she would do her best to protect Roshar but the poor woman already had thousands of other worlds to keep the same promise as well.  She could only have faith in the knights Koru had promised would protect the world in her absence.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   16th January 2018, 3:48 pm

Interrogation Between Aegle and Alshain:
 

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   16th January 2018, 5:42 pm



Hadley felt her hope grow in strength at the idea of Alshain's words. If anyone was able to know if Crysdal was actually Crysdal, it would be her.

She still felt convinced that this had to be the real Crysdal, but having Alshain's confirmation would go a long way in solidifying that conviction into plain fact.

She just hoped the others would see it that way. She wanted Crysdal to undergo such suspicion for as little as possible. It wasn't fair, especially if she was the true one. And, the less time they spent wondering about Crysdal - who definitely had to be the real one, of course - the more time they could spend getting to the root of the problem.

Which meant they'd get to save everyone faster.

Hadley watched in silence as Alshain left the room, waiting for her to come back with her verdict.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   16th January 2018, 11:12 pm



At some point, she had tuned out the talk, especially when it grew complicated with consciousness and going in and hypotheticals about the impostor. Basically, everything Somnus said. Her sister seemed to think bringing the two Aegles together was a good idea, and then Alshain offered to check the one they had. After she left, one of the senshi she didn't recognize yelled something about endlessly waiting around and Hemera sympathized with her. She seemed agitated even as she sat down, fidgeting in a way that was all too familiar to Hemera.

Hemera decided to walk toward her. They seemed to be on the same boat, and if they both talked to each other they could both have something to occupy their time other than waiting. 

“Hi,” she said brightly to the similarly colored senshi, managing a small smile despite her worries and anxiety. “I'm Sailor Hemera. I don't think we've been introduced. You have a friend who's sleeping as well?” she asked curiously. “I can't wait to do something either, but my sister always says rushing in without a plan is just as bad. I do hope they figure out something soon, though.”

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   17th January 2018, 9:19 am



She had no objections to any of the suggestions, nor did any additional input rise to her mind. This was far beyond the stony woman's wheelhouse. Sailor Xtal-Diamante tuned herself to these vibrations off and on, but it did little for her. The passion from Sailor Roshar manifested as somewhat harsher waves that jangled about in Xtal-Diamante's crystal core, reflecting the disquiet from the woman. Although the velveteen-clad teenager opted for a path more passive, she felt a similar restlessness. Sailor Alshain's departure would hopefully bring them closer to whatever would be attempted with Sailor Somnus. For now, she waited for her assignment.
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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   17th January 2018, 9:50 am

Alshain opened the door and entered back into the room with the others, Aegle by her side.  She cautiously looked to the guards before making her announcement, ready to physically intervene if necessary.  

"After questioning and behavior testing, I believe this is the original Aegle."  She paused for a moment, before continuing on that sharp tone she tended to have when raising her voice for others to hear.  "Not only did I test the knowledge that only Aegle and I would have, I also tested knowledge an impostor wouldn't know to look for at the same time.  By changing my behavior and personality while questioning her at the same time, even if they were able to access her knowledge, they wouldn't know that I was acting out of character without knowing to look for that information. " So she passed...


Turning to Somnus, Alshain indicated her readiness to move on, a head nod and a hand held out before returning to her side.  They needed to get a move on to save the others.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   17th January 2018, 10:25 am

Sailor Roshar

Hemera's words helped ease her agitation a little. At least she wasn't alone with these impatient feelings. Roshar cracked a small smile at the girl as she replied, "I'm that obvious, huh?"

She adjusted her position in the chair, stretching her arms before relaxing them behind her, using them as a head rest.

"Well, it's not like I was trying to be subtle either," she chuckled a bit before reaching a hand out towards Hemera, "Roshar. Plans are great and all but how does one plan for a world they've never been in? It's not even the physical world. Koru once mentioned the cognitive realm. Apparently that's where he's from but the useless spren can't even tell me anything about it."

She huffed. Koru was her closest friend, but sometimes the little guy was cryptic and withheld information; sometimes he just didn't remember. She still hadn't gotten a clear answer when he told her she would kill him one day.

Her inner thoughts almost brought another scowl to her face but thankfully Alshain walked in and announced Aegle as good. She had no real reason to trust her words other than she was a Sailor Senshi and that was good enough for her. As long as they got moving. Roshar stood eagerly.

"Let's get to it then!"

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   17th January 2018, 11:47 am



Hadley tensed in anticipation as Alshain opened the door. Hadley's eyes flickered to Crysdal - bright and warm Crysdal - but she couldn't bare to look too closely. What if it turned out that this truly was an imposter?

Impossible, her heart cried, and when Alshain gave her verdict on the matter, Hadley felt the first full smile pull at her lips in a long time.

She hadn't lost another friend after all.

Hadley took a few steps closer to Crysdal and reached out for the other girl's hands. "I knew it," she said, smile still present. In a quieter tone, she asked, "Are you okay?"

She heard the girl with the bright orange and yellow colors speak up, urging for action, but Hadley paid no attention to that. If it had been up to that senshi, Crysdal would be unconscious and people would still be doubting her.

Instead, Hadley focused solely on Crysdal's return and the sweet relief that her small group of friends, for now at least, remained unchanged.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   17th January 2018, 12:15 pm



After a short while, Alshain returned, together with Aegle. So she believed that she was the real deal.

"Believe..." She said mostly to herself, but loud enough for anyone paying attention to hear, before proceeding to speak up. "Sounds like a good plan, but... Exactly how certain are you? If we go in, chances are we'll encounter the other Aegle. She will try to deceive us for sure. And if she has fooled those she was with, she must play her role quite well..."

"How confident are you that the one inside is the fake one? Are you prepared to attack and defeat that one, when it comes to that?"

"...Just don't let your guard down, everyone." She hesitantly looked towards Aegle. Nyx still did believe it was more likely for this one to be the real one. After all, possessing someone and accessing all conscious and subconscious memories sounded less probable than simply taking the form of a trusted person in the nightmare they control. But they can't afford a mistake.

Aegle Eye Contact:
 

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   17th January 2018, 4:39 pm

When Alshain returned, Shadow held his silence; it was best for him to keep some amount of emotional detachment. He wasn't familiar with Aegle beyond their initial introductions in the conference, but Alshain was vetting her identity.

All I can do is watch and wait.

Where would the basis of real knowledge start in this situation? Since he had no prior experience with the kind of dream attack being levied against the senshi, Shadow had to begin with the assumption that he knew nothing and needed to remain vigilant. Just like the case with Sagittarius Zero Star, missing any detail could prove to be a deadly mistake.

"You're right," Shadow agreed with Nyx's declaration. He had yet to learn the name of the girl with dark blue hair, but she seemed to spend no less time thinking over the nuances of their problem. Meanwhile, her companion with the bright disposition had decided to visit Roshar, making introductions and finding solidarity or something to that extent. Given that it was kind of rude to eavesdrop into her chat with Roshar, Shadow had not listened too closely to their friendly banter.

The dark knight turned to face Somnus, thinking back to how Sailor Valdis had comforted her with a softer tone. Indeed, it was the dream senshi's own courage that would make this plan possible. "Somnus.. is there anything we've learned that can be used to prepare ourselves? When you first attempted to pry into the dream, you mentioned a burning city with brown sand and piles of bodies." He raised a hand to his chest, briefly shaking his head. "It's not like anything I have seen.."

Shadow trailed off, glancing towards the gathering of senshi. If they had close bonds with the comatose guardians, would any of them recognize that place?
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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   18th January 2018, 8:34 am

Alshain wasn't offended or even upset by what Nyx was suggesting.  She herself doubted her own abilities in this situation.   However doubt would only cause more problems, so she would need to move forward.

"I am prepared to do that yes, the others were suddenly thrown into a land that's different from this place and are unaware of a duplicate, I'd bet they're much more focused on their environment than on each other."

Sharp eyes glanced to the overly pink body next to hers as thoughts of failure rang through her mind.  "There's really only one way to know for sure and it won't be until this is all over."

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   18th January 2018, 3:07 pm


Crysdal took Hadley's hands and held them loosely, nodding once to her question, her mouth a line that looked like it might have been attempting a smile for her friend but never quite managed to get there, Nyx's words ominous but completely understandable given the circumstances. She looked down at their joined hands as Amaya spoke, knowing she just needed to stay calm and keep her head down - give them no reason to doubt her identity. ... Not that that was stressful or anything. Act normal - but not flat normal - you normal - or else chance throwing them off of the real culprit besides whatever they did to her. She didn't want to be hurt. She didn't want them to live with knowing they had made that mistake, either. It wasn't a good feeling, and she probably wouldn't have even thought of it if she hadn't been so recently reminded of it by Inara. And Elysande. ... What would she do if they tried, though? Just... take it? Or fight back and look more suspicious? Either way if someone else was out there looking like her, doing something to make them think she was whatever it was wouldn't end well.

She looked at Amaya, catching her eyes, "hearing" her apology in her head. She nodded slightly. 
Aegle Eye Contact wrote:
I understand. But I'm a little scared. Please don't hold it against me.
She admitted it only because she was afraid that the stress might show and someone could pick up on it. Faking it was second nature, but something like this... she swallowed, breaking eye contact with Amaya. Something like this had more than just her pride at stake. More than just the mental wellbeing of the group. 

There's really only one way to know for sure and it won't be until this is all over.

She squeezed Hadley's hands. Elysande had filled her in on what they were attempting to do; she was ready, but she'd feel a lot better about things if whatever it was in there was pretending to be someone else

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   18th January 2018, 3:28 pm

Somnus
Alshain returned, vouched for this Aegle being the real Aegle - not that that made much of a difference to her, she'd be watching her like a hawk the entire time anyway - and they were on her about getting started already. She guessed that only Nyx's opinion about taking her mattered, then. That or she had said what everyone else was thinking and they turned their attention to Alshain's interrogation and took it as a given that she would be coming regardless of the results. Either way. 

Shadow called her attention and she stared at him as he spoke, blinking only when he finished talking. She shook her head. "That dream is over," she said simply, "Most of the inhabitants fell out of it - unless whatever it was wanted to put the remaining two into a nightmare it would've changed the dream already. The scene was creepy, but not nightmarish, so I don't think it'd go that way. If we're ready," she said, looking at the gathered group and projecting her voice to be heard, "then get comfortable. When you see me in your dreams, don't question it, just come with me. To make it easier to find and connect all of us, repeat this phrase to yourself, over and over, and imagine it as a scene. Try to think about nothing else. Clouds. Waterfall. Rainbow. Got it?

She wished she still had the ability to project her own daydreams; it would make this process a lot simpler. 

"Clouds, waterfall, rainbow.

She was glad they had moved to a smaller room; they were less likely to be disturbed. There weren't any cots, but the moment they lowered themselves or looked comfortable enough against a wall or something, she'd put them to sleep, sure that the stress or excitement would make it near impossible for them to sleep otherwise. 

DM wrote:
Get comfy and stick with the prompt! Once every character gets into place, I'll have Somnus put them all to sleep and go in after them.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   18th January 2018, 11:20 pm



She offered a smile to the girl, who introduced herself as Sailor Roshar. The girl's last sentence, however, was completely lost on her because she had no idea who this 'Koru' was, and what was a 'spren' anyway?

However, before she could ask, their attention was drawn to the returning Alshain.

When she announced that she had cleared Aegle as the real one, Hemera felt relieved. It didn't even cross her mind that Alshain could be wrong; those two were best friends, so they must know each other well enough. If anyone were to impersonate Nyx, she liked to think she would know too.

Nyx still seemed uncertain about this plan, and Hemera didn't like the idea of facing both Aegles and having to decide which was the real one either. Could she attack one of them if it came down to it? The person wearing her friend's face?

She didn't like to think about it and decided she'd cross that bridge when she came to it. She glanced at Aegle and offered a smile, though all she really wanted was to go and hug her. Still, maybe now wasn't the best time.

Somnus was directing them all to enter the dream. Hemera sat on the ground, trying to relax despite the anxiety. Somnus' key words echoed in her mind as she closed her eyes. Clouds. She thought about fluffy white clouds in the blue sky. Waterfall. One of Dies Nox's beautiful waterfalls right by the palace. Rainbow. The colors that appeared among the water when the light hit them a certain way.

She combined all of them into one image and immersed herself in it, trying to forget where she actually was and everything going on with the sleeping senshi. It occurred to her then that she might not wake up from this dream either, but she had to try. For their friends.

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PostSubject: Re: [HC Event] Nightmare   19th January 2018, 1:14 am



Nyx's words echoed through her, even as Hadley continued to look at Crysdal. Was she prepared to attack someone who looked like her friend?

Could she defeat a creature wearing a friend's face?

She didn't know.

There would always be that fear: What if they were attacking the real Crysdal? What if they were wrong?

But no, Alshain was certain, and that made Hadley feel certain as well. This Crysdal, the one whose hands gently squeezed her own, this was the real Crysdal. Warm and gentle Crysdal. Surely there would be something to tell the difference between the two, especially if both were side-by-side. Something small, something that the imposter couldn't possibly ever replicate.

Hadley latched on to that thought like a life-line.

Somnus brought Hadley back to the present when she instructed everyone to think of a list of words to help with the process of getting them to the dreamworld. Right. It was time.

Hadley gave another small squeeze to Crysdal's hands before moving to sit on the ground. She found a wall to lean up against, trying to take a little room as possible.

Sitting there, she tried to clear all her thoughts except for the prompt she'd been given. Clouds, waterfall, rainbow. Clouds, waterfall, rainbow. She thought of a small hidden alcove on Valdis, and of the times she went there. A secret and secure place all to herself.

Maybe Ari would like to see it. Once this was all over. Once she was safe.

No. She couldn't think of that right now. Hadley forced herself to concentrate and relax, evening out her breathing. Clouds, waterfall, rainbow.

She went back to that secret place on Valdis within her mind. She thought of the wispy clouds that were created by the waterfall crashing down, and the way rainbows arced through the mist like magic. Over and over she thought of this specific set of images, hoping that she wouldn't mess up.

Ari and the others were depending on her to do this right.

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