S.L.I.C.E. {Game Thread/ Closed, Started}

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Beep boop, I am error.

D3 & D5

The 2 and a half remaining turned around to see a chuckling figure attempt to kill one of their ranks. Dog laid on the ground, gasping for breath, both hands on his throat.

"Shut him up, please shut him the fuck up!" Chicken screamed, as his partner tried to shoot the attacker. Managed to miss. Annoyed by that and the gurgling, he aimed his gun at Dog, putting a round between his eyes.

"There! Now shut the fuck up, and fish that mother fucker out of the bushes!" A light chuckle was heard, again, though not from Lars.

"Then there was Andy!" Pendragon shouted, springing from a tree ("How'd he get up there?" a human in a black suit shrugged), and bringing his sword down diagonally managing to cleave Cow in half. Chicken put a round in the back of his head.

"... That tickles." Andrew Pendragon muttered, tightening his grip on Avalon, "You'll die slowly." All was quiet for a moment, before the angel moaned.

"Need a doctor..." Chicken brought his gun up, before it was cleaved in half by Andy.

The Elf, leader of D5, finally stopped releasing smoke, taking on the view of the carnage.

"... We were supposed to take their place... God fucking damnit." He pinched the bridge of his nose, before sighing and throwing his hands up into the air, "Fuck it, we're strong arming it. Pendragon, get your men lined up in front of the windows, D5, follow me. We're going through the back door."

Pendragon shrugged off the others swearing, muttering something about chill pills, and leading his men towards the building, one staying behind to take care of the angel.

Up close, the building looked worse, and smelled of sulfur. All could guess that was the hulking figure inside, wearing bronze roman centurion armor. He ran his fingers over his shaved head, inbetween the large ram horns. His lower body was that of a faun, too. The ebony claymore on his back looked used, to say the least, crimson visible on the sawtoothed blade. He seemed to be smirking, looking through the walls, his eyes of lava passing over everyone.

He started pacing, deliberately, faster the closer the forces approached. He smiled widely, revealing jagged rows of sharp, long teeth. He stopped when all were ready, drawing his blade slowly, causing an irritating grinding noise.

"I am the most powerful demon to ever be. Are you ready to die?" A voice rang out to all around, though it didn't seem to come from his mouth. That was to busy grinning wildly.

"Arrogant, don't you think?" Came a voice from behind him, also clearly heard. The man wrapped in blue stood directly behind him, holding his hand to his hidden face, "And frankly, you smell bad." Abadon whipped around, cleaving the empty robe in half. Merlin stood in front of him now, 10 ft away, now wearing a steel breastplate over a dark blue robe. His face was old, that of a man in his late 40s, with a burn mark over a lidless, orange eyeball with only a snake's pupil to show it isn't a ball.

"Do you like this? They always told me I had my mothers eyes...." He smirked, and the demon sighed,

"Are you going to throw quips, or spells you has been. You could barely make it out of a cave, and you think you can beat me?" Merlin shrugged, grin dropping, before holding his hand out. The demon blinked, his sword missing, being held in Merlin's hand. He also had a dull throbbing pain on his nose.

"Help would be appreciated, you know." Merlin called over his shoulder, sticking Abadon's sword into the ground.

"You really want to hear words from a forked tongue?" The half-something whispered, not unlike a devil, in her ear.

The demon she had questioned look up at the misty man before writhing in pain, screeching out some adulation for the man before writhing in pain; two scythes emerging from her forearms. She cursed whoever had done it, now the demon was swaying drunkenly like a marionette. Her chance for information lost. They were facing a horde, there would be others.

The witch shot the hybrid a look that could indeed kill if she wished it, "Even if it is forked, the information truth, half truth or lies, it is still valuable to me."

Before her another portal opened up, a wave of deadly looker demons emerging from it. These were soldiers unlike the other in the arena. Pain would not take them so easily.

"Die" She pushed her hand out toward them, leaving it to hang in the air as she put together the new curse: wither and dry. She directed the hex towards them, instead of a pulse of magical energy a beam with the hex infused into shot towards the new demons.

"Pretty."

Haytham took a short bow, "I do try my best." With a smile, he readied his katars but was surprised when constructs of blood shot out of the demon's arms and began to spin around like a drunken ballerina. He quickly jumped out of the way and preceded to stand his ground for a bit, katars raised up in a blocking position. It would be rude to suddenly leave the conversation after all. Even if she gave him a look that could probably kill an efreeti, let alone himself. But then again, there were those words...

"Even if it is forked, the information truth, half truth or lies, it is still valuable to me."

Haytham smirked at this, and jested in response, "Each to their own, but demons always lie. Everybody knows that." As the woman shot the beam, he flipped over, switched to the AK-47 and fired at the horde. As he land in the rear of the newcomers in kevlar, he switched back to the katars. Whatever was on their was bad news and Haytham began to hack away at them in his usual slice-and-dice style. Still, there was that beam of magic(?) to take into account and he was ready to exit the fray when it reached the crowd of kevlar.

D2 & D6

The horde had shrunk significantly. It seemed most were either running away, or dying to gunfire and other weapons. The demon soldiers had managed to get a few of their brethren back through the portal, for medical treatment and rest.

Still, others stayed, firing blindly for the most part against the invaders. Zeke saw so many dead, and cast a spell, summoning large, sharp tendrils out of the corpses, swinging them at all nearby. Guerra had finished his foes, and was smiling in his human form, his gun empty and blade drenched in blood.

The speaker, clutching his stomach saw all of this, a tear forming in his eye. "So many brothers lost. Why are they so brutal?" He spoke mostly to the sky, though Samael approached slowly, speaking when hearing his words, "You people have brought it on yourselves."

The boot of the angle was the last thing he saw.

~

The division heads stepped around the bodies, already decomposing, to their men. They seemed shell shocked, a fact Zeke ignored. It seemed the battle was over for today, a surprise attack that would devastate the enemy. He couldn't help himself from smirking.

"Zeke, we need to get moving. Base is expecting us." Zeke tore his gaze away from the blood and gore towards his ward, the demon Guerra.

"Yes, yes. Summon a portal, a bus, something I don't care. I'll stick around..." Guerra shrugged, turning around and calling all to him.

"Alright everyone, D6 will prepare a portal for us outside the stadium, and D4 will move in to examine the remains. Great work today, though everyone will report to ground floor for psych eval." At his words, 5 mages gathered together, Samael and the Minnesotan elf among them, and began chanting. A portal opened after several minutes, a rift in reality hat showed the familiar church on the other side. Several men in white coats and hazmat suits stepped through, and began sifting among the bodies.

The group was free to leave now, the heads had already disappeared through the portal.

"Alright everyone, D6 will prepare a portal for us outside the stadium, and D4 will move in to examine the remains. Great work today, though everyone will report to ground floor for psych eval."

The demons had fled, although most of them were dead, lying on the ground or completely crushed. Will felt numb, and he staggered through the portal, ahead of Lucas. However, he stopped, and turned around. Lucas still had that arm, didn't he? When he saw the black thing that was a part of his brother, he shuddered. What had his brother been thinking? Not only did Will loathe snake, but more importantly, it was fucked up.

"Then again, what was I thinking? What was I doing" The feeling of demons being crushed by his invisible hands returned to him, making him a bit sick. However, he reminded himself of that it had been on purpose. These were not humans, they were demons. The enemy, in a war. With this in mind, he finally walked though that portal.

At the ground floor, he looked around. There had been some kind of psych evaluation, right? What were they looking for? "Would I be able to pass it? What do we need to do in order to pass it? Wh-what if I don't? No, I have to stay calm."

Worrying about it would only make it worse. Besides, he seemed calm on the outside, albeit he probably looked tired an sleepy. His mind was a jumbled mess of fear, disgust, despair, and plain shock, numbed by the constant presence of his powers. But he was calm. perhaps that was enough? He walked up in line for the evaluation, Lucas would probably be there soon, and he wanted to get this over with before having to deal with that again. When it was his turn, he stepped up to the people doing the evaluation.

"So, how does this work?" he asked. His distant eyes hid the emotions of a childish, young man who had just killed several dozens of demons with his mind.

The demons fled, as they went Lucas pulled his arm back into its normal shape, there was a sense of discomfort as the bones reformed and snapped into place, and a faint itching sensation as his skin reverted to normal. When it was finished he glanced back over his arm to make sure it was in the proper shape, stretching and wriggling his fingers to make sure everything was in order.

That done he turned and followed the others back to the base, following the crowd to figure out where to go, he figured there was probably a debriefing or something, if nothing else he would like something to eat, shapeshifting had left him feeling very hungry.

John's amorpha dropped as the division head dropped one of the remaining combatants and incapacitated the last one.

The D5 head spoke "... We were supposed to take their place... God fucking damnit." He pinched the bridge of his nose, before sighing and throwing his hands up into the air, "Fuck it, we're strong arming it. Pendragon, get your men lined up in front of the windows, D5, follow me. We're going through the back door."

Pendragon the D3 head shrugged it off and led him men towards the building, with one staying behind to tend to the downed angel.

Up close, the building smelled of sulfur, even through the mask and John took position at one of the windows, ready to smash it open. He guessed the smell was being exuded from the large demon. It was wearing bronze roman centurion armor, and was running its hands over it's shaven head inbetween large ram horns. Its lower half appeared to have been that of a faun. The ebony claymore on his back looked like it had been used, considering the crimson visible on the sawtoothed blade. It seemed to be smirking, with its molten eyes surveying the group.

John blocked the smell from his mind as tried to take in the image of the warehouse, his eyes being consistently drawn back to the image of the demon.

It started pacing, becoming faster as the forces approached. IT smiled widely, revealing jagged rows of sharp, long teeth. It stopped when the group got within striking distance, drawing its blade slowly, causing an irritating grinding noise, which John decidedly blocked from his mind as well.

"I am the most powerful demon to ever be. Are you ready to die?" A voice rang out to all, though it didn't seem to come from it's mouth. Something John was used to in his experience, it must telepathic, he'd have to watch for the inevitable probing.

"Arrogant, don't you think?" Came a voice from behind the demon, also probably telepathic. A man wrapped in blue stood directly behind it, holding his hand to a hidden face, "And frankly, you smell bad." The Demon whipped around, cleaving an empty robe in half. The man stood about 10 feet in front of it, now wearing a steel breastplate over a dark blue robe. His face was old, that of a man in his late 40s, with a burn mark over a lidless, orange eyeball with only a snake's pupil marking it.

"Do you like this? They always told me I had my mothers eyes...." The man smirked, and the demon sighed,

"Are you going to throw quips, or spells you has been. You could barely make it out of a cave, and you think you can beat me?" The demonic voice came again and The Man shrugged with his grin dropping. Then he held his hand out. The demons sword disappeared into the Mans hand.

"Help would be appreciated, you know." The Man called over his shoulder as he stuck The Demons sword into the ground.

John muttered something and began fiddling with his rifle, he hit a few switches, replaced the magazine with one loaded with Blessed JSP rounds, and loaded the launcher tube with a cold iron charge. He lined up a shot on the Demon and fired single shots at its head, the center of its torso where he figured he would hit a spinal cord, where he presumed its heart would be on its left, and where he assumed its lung would be on its right. However he full well knew most of these creatures didn't follow any standard form of anatomy.

D3 & D5

Merlin distracted the demon with petty insults, trying to give his troops more time to load up their shots. The one named John took the first shot, which Abadon quickly moved his hand to deflect, smirking.

'These humans are-'

Everyone felt a weird shift in the air, and in the blink of an eye, Abadon was turned around, with his claymore returned, straight into his arm. Merlin was chuckling in the corner.

'So weak.' He dropped his smirk, turning around to get hit in the chest. Merlin's idle chuckling turned into full barks of laughter at his opponent. Abadon, injured but not out, called out, actually speaking this time,

"Shut the hell up!" Merlin wiped a tear from his eyes, still smiling. He spread his legs out, pulling his arms out to both sides, black fire balls forming in each hand, veins popping in his demonic eye. His laughter returned, though more sinister this time.

He threw them both, both transforming into skulls that seemed to trace the demons movements, looking for a way to do maximum damage. They both managed to strike him, one in the armpit and the other in the face, knocking him off his feet.

"Shoot the bastard now!" Merlin yelled, to which everyone abliged. After a chaotic hailstorm of lead, the demon laid on the ground, breathing heavily. And then, in the blink of an eye, both were gone, leaving the rest to figure out what to do.

"... God damn it, we have no way of getting back, do we?" Pendragon moaned, his colleague preparing a spell.

"Calvin, what're you doing?" The elf didn't respond, though he finished his spell, smoke wrapping around everyone, taking them into the air, though the wounded angel and medic were gone, like the demon and wizard. They ended up back at base, just in time to be lined up for psych eval.
_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Everyone

The line led to another elevator. A slight annoyance could be felt by some, though most were used to elevators at this point. Besides, it was better than gun fire.

The elevator, which all could recognize from the first day, took them deeper than the barracks. Much deeper. An errant glance around showed they had gone deeper than logic dictated was even possible (Samael even thought he saw a fossil), until it stopped, suddenly, revealing a massive room they were in the center of.

The room was white, and sterile, several men in lab coats wandered around. The machinery looked simply alien, and hummed with slight arcane power. A handsome man in a suit led the group towards a long hallway, much like the barracks.

Each room seemed to conform to the mind of those who entered. Serene waterfalls, childhood homes, the ocean, it changed for everyone to be most comfortable. The only thing they all had in common was a man and a desk, with a single piece of paper and a name tag, that read simply "Dr. Gerald Mann". It was the third member of Division one, the G-Man.

"May we get started?"

They had been walked into an elevator, and into a really odd room, white and with odd machinery. After that, it had been a hallway. An illusion? How far had the elevator taken them, if not? They were to walk into separate rooms, and Will didn't feel all that well, suddenly. Sure, he had been willing to keep a distance from Lucas when he knew where he was, and that would only last a while. This place was strange and alien. However, as he walked into the room, whatever doubts he had about it disappeared, as a large wooden room appeared, with a tall roof and fairly open. A large number of chairs were put out in a half-circle, accompanied by music stands. In the middle, a conductor's music stand stood, albeit there were no one there.

"This is..." Will wasn't sure why, and how, but as always, the location was the place where he had always been able to lose himself, not being Will, but a flutist in an orchestra, a part of the harmony. Was the purpose making him feel calm and relaxed?

"May we get started?"

He noticed a man in the corner of his eyes, and turned around. Had he been there the whole time. "Y-yeah." Will walked over to the desk, having not noticed it with all the chairs and such in the room. The man behind the desk seemed to be named Dr. Gerald Mann. "Of course."

John felt the pain of teleportation again, and then he was back in the main hall at the headquarters. After a coughing fit he pulled his mask off and stumbled back to the bench he was at before as his lungs adjusted to the air again. He fumbled around in his rucksack looking for a detox vial. A minute later he found one, pulled the stopper off, and downed the red liquid. His eyes lost the silver sheen and his mind became less wild, but his eyes took on a bloodshot appearance and a headache began.

He got back in line for the elevator after another moment, and went down to the labs with the rest of the group. He passed through the labs into a hallway reminiscent of the barracks. Everyone seemed to be going to a different room and John pulled one of the unused doors open before walking in. The room was sterile and white like the rest of the surrounding complex. He had the nagging feeling that this was some form of illusion however.

The man at the desk apparently Dr. Gerald Mann spoke "May we get started?"

John sat down in the metal chair infront of the desk and spoke "Of course."

Lucas passed through the white lab room into something unexpected, the room seemed to have changed into that of his parents basement entertainment center, which he hadn't seen in some time, especially since before SLICE he had been busy with college. It brought a faint smile to his face, though he knew it couldn't be real, the desk with the doctor behind it where the TV should be was proof enough of that, but even so he felt himself relaxing as he sat on the familiar old couch.

"May we get started?"

"Sure, not like I have anywhere else to be," Lucas replied, trying to remain nonchalant.

The room... wasn't really a room. Well, it was at first, a plain white, squarish chamber that lacked any sort of decoration and looked about as sterile as an operating room. But the second Lyra stepped through the door and swung it shut, the room... well, it stopped being a room.

The walls and ceiling seemed to just disappear. They didn't slide into the ground or fall away, they simply vanished into thin air, as though they were nothing more than mere apparitions. In their place arose a sprawling forest, one that seemed to stretch for as far as the eye could see. Hundreds of trees, their leafy branches interlocking to form a emerald canopy, shook in a breeze that Lyra could hear but not feel. Sunlight filtered through the treetops, casting ever shifting shadows and patches of light upon the ground. About a hundred yards out, a small creek bubbled along merrily, its contents cutting a swath through the sea of trees.

"W-wow," the soldier muttered as she slowly spun around. "That's... Pretty damn impressive."

"May we get started?"

"Huh? O-oh, right!"

Shaking her head, Lyra marched forward, grabbing hold of the chair in front of her and sitting down. Taking a few deep breaths, she focused on the man behind the desk and forced her thoughts to calm down and sink back to reality. I'm not in the middle of a forest here. I'm in the SLICE headquarters, getting my psych evaluation. You can see and hear the scenery, but you cannot smell or feel it; it's an illusion, nothing more. A complex one, granted, but still.

"Sorry about that, Mr. Mann. I'm ready to begin whenever you are."

"Y-yeah. Of course."

"Sure, not like I have anywhere else to be."

"Sorry about that, Mr. Mann. I'm ready to begin whenever you are."

Gerald crossed his legs, studying the various reactions. 25 voices in his head, 40 in the background. 1 on the topside of the church. 100s in the city...

Gerald simply smiled, a small action that could be translated however the watcher wanted to. His eyes remained blank, studying every twitch in the patient.

"You've been on your first mission, for us of course. I can easily wait, and read the report your division head will send me... But yet, I wish to hear about it from you." he leaned forward a bit, still watching. A new voice entered his head, one he hadn't heard.

'Merlin has forgotten his barrier...'

A grey room, of brick and spartan design. There are no furnishings, but there are runes, and a lone window, showing sun, as it slowly fell over the horizon. A young man paces. His eyes are red, and puffy. He has been crying, of course. He has run out of tears now, however.

Fourth day of imprisonment. Memories of her. The lady in black, eyes burning orange, laughing. And laughing. And laughing.

He sits down, suddenly, covering his ears.

"SHUTUPSHUTUPSHUTUPSHUT"

Gerald shook his head. Fascinating, but deal with that later. Have his patients spoken? Perhaps, he would press on regardless.

"... If the background bothers you at all, objects can be made physical. If it makes this easier for you."

"You've been on your first mission, for us of course. I can easily wait, and read the report your division head will send me... But yet, I wish to hear about it from you."

The man looked like he had zoned out.

"I assume this is on the record. Okay, give me a moment to think."

The man shook his head and spoke again.

"... If the background bothers you at all, objects can be made physical. If it makes this easier for you."

"No, it doesn't bother me."

He mulled the mission over in his head for a moment, nothing that would need creative censoring came to mind.

"We were teleported to the mission site, and told to wait for... well I hadn't been told what the objective was, but I waited for a signal. Several men with animal masks drove into the area in an unmarked van. When one of the D5 men, approached it and... I hadn't seen who, but one of our men opened fire. I assumed this to be a signal and as the van attempted to flee, I as well as most of the team opened fire on it and its occupants. It flipped and one of the targets wounded a team member. The D3 head killed all but one of the remaining targets and from what I saw knocked the remaining target unconscious. I assume he was taken back with us for interrogation. The man I assume is the D5 head was angered at the state of the mission, and ordered the D3 personnel to take positions outside of the warehouse. It smelled like sulfur and inside was a demon of apparently considerable power. It telepathically broadcasted a boast and a man appeared behind it. The man attacked the demon, and I opened fire on it. It slapped my bullets out of the air somehow and was wounded further by the man after being distracted by my shots. The man and it disappeared, and we were teleported back to base."

"Is there anything that requires clarification?"

"You've been on your first mission, for us of course. I can easily wait, and read the report your division head will send me... But yet, I wish to hear about it from you."

Will looked at him. It was hardly a surprise that the man wanted to talk about the mission, it being a psych eval right after the first, stressful mission. For a number of people, this was the first time they ever killed something with human intelligence. As for him, it had been a very unpleasant event. The first of many. Of course, Lucas' shape-shifting hadn't really helped. "Sure. Where do you want me to start?"

He didn't receive an answer, and suddenly the doctor shook his head. Was it to him? Or someone else? From the first questions, Will had figured that this man was probably as much of an illusion as the rest of the room, a means of doing the psychic evaluation of many people at once. Which meant he might as well be shaking his head for some other reason. Still, it was odd.

"... If the background bothers you at all, objects can be made physical. If it makes this easier for you."

"I'm fine... I'd rather just get this over with." Rather than waiting for the man to tell him about a place to start, Will sighed. Starting from after they were teleported to the outside of the stadium was okay, right? Not to mention, few details were needed, he didn't doubt several other people would go more into details and not everything before or after was relevant, so he could probably sum it up in a short summary.

Besides, he just wanted to be out of there, really. Go back to bed, perhaps eat some breakfast first. Curl up and see if he managed to keep the events out of his head long enough for it not to appear in his dreams. If not that, perhaps practice the flute the very least. Read a book. Anything that brought him away from where he was for a couple of hours.

"I was sent there, put in a small group with a witch from D6, a guy named Haytham from D2, and my brother, Lucas Hale, and then ordered to attack. I used telekinesis to murder as many demons as I could manage, usually by breaking their necks or crushing their skulls. I don't remember the exact number, but a couple of tens. Some of them had emerged from a portal, with a strange device, capable of making people into bloody messes, but all were taken care of, either killed or driven away."

That had to be enough of a summary. He looked over at the chairs, thinking he probably should have asked for something to sit on. Well, hopefully he was out of there soon either way.

"What's next?"

"... If the background bothers you at all, objects can be made physical. If it makes this easier for you."

"No its fine, as for the mission, well I dunno there were demons and we killed them, not much more to say," he shrugged ambivalently, though his next words contained a bit of concern "I feel like I should be more upset or disturbed by seeing them die, but I feel fine."

He wondered if those feelings would hit him later, or not at all, perhaps the simple knowledge of what they were was enough to prevent him from feeling like that? Or maybe I'm an awful person he thought, before dismissing the thought. Might even be a side effect of my powers, well hopefully this guy can help.

Psych eval was a boring affair and he droned his account of the misson. Yes, he had killed demons by performing flip-floppy-fu with sharp objects. Yes, he wasn't disturbed by the whole affair. Yes, they should spent some more time with the women with the marks. Yes, she would probably hex them. No, he didn't need the objects to be made physical. At least the sand wouldn't get in his eyes. He leaned back and checked over the AK-47. Sturdy old things they were, and this one was no different. It hadn't ever jammed. And Haytham took his time making sure that would be case. Well, it was something to pass the time, at least. He sighed, he didn't need the doctor to tell him to pretend that all of the flesh and gore was just ketchup and mincemeat. Haytham had done this a thousand times already, and he was still smiling. Hopefully the doctor would pick up on that.

"You've been on your first mission, for us of course. I can easily wait, and read the report your division head will send me... But yet, I wish to hear about it from you."

"Of course."

Clearing her throat, Lyra prepared to deliver her end of the debriefing, just like she had done a hundred times before. It was a mechanical, routine process by this point; all she had to do was list off the mission objectives, which of them, if any, had been accomplished, and give a brief rundown of the events that had transpired.

"We were teleported into an empty field early this morning," the soldier began, her voice level and devoid of feeling. She was relaying details, and allowing emotion to influence her words would lend her words unintended bias. "Captain Pendragon and the D5 head provided us with some basic instructions, then left us to perform our own preparations; I hung back and used a rifle to provide long range support for the initial conflict.

"The mission itself was fairly straightforward: We needed to intercept a group of human arms-dealers who were preparing to sell their merchandise to a demon. The dealers were traveling in a large, unmarked van; we were supposed to take it down quietly, eliminate or incapacitate the dealers, and then approach the demon. But something went awry, and instead of stopping the dealers quietly we engaged in a full-fledged firefight. We had a few injuries on our side, but no fatalities that I'm aware of. The dealers, on the other hand, were all eliminated. So far as I know, not one of them was taken alive."

A practiced observer might've noticed something shift in Lyra's stance as she delivered that last bit of information. The muscles in her jaw seemed to tighten up just the slightest bit, and her fingers, spread out neatly in her lap, twitched a bit, as though they were resisting the urge to curl into fists.

The moment soon passed, however, and the soldier's report continued.

"With our cover blown, there wasn't much chance of getting the ambush off, so the plan was changed. We just charged the derelict warehouse the demon was in. Well, the rest of the divisions did, anyway; I just moved so I could provide better support.

"Inside the warehouse we encountered the demon. It claimed its name was Abaddon, but I'm not sure if it was the actual Abaddon or just an impostor going by that name. It went down a bit too easy for my liking...

"Regardless, the demon initially posed quite a threat. However, another SLICE operative, though I'm not sure which division he was from, appeared and engaged the target one on one. He managed to fight the target to a standstill, giving our forces time to position ourselves and get our shots lined up. When he gave the signal, we all opened fire, and while the target was certainly tenacious, it could only take so much damage before going down.

"Then we were teleported back to base."

Nodding once, Lyra mentally reviewed her summary. She believed she had gotten all of the important details; anything she had omitted was just fluff. Yes, she should have given Dr. Mann everything he needed to... do whatever he was doing. Checking her for signs of trauma or stress, most likely.

So why did he look so distracted, like he was only half-listening to her?

"Er... Sir?" she began, leaning forward slightly in her seat. "Is everything alright?"

Suddenly, the doctor seemed to snap back to reality. ...Or wherever this place was. "... If the background bothers you at all, objects can be made physical. If it makes this easier for you."

...He didn't listen to a word I just said, did he?

Barely repressing a sigh, the soldier sat up straight, unable to keep a slight twinge of annoyance out of her voice as she replied. "In all honesty, sir, I would prefer the background be dismissed entirely. I understand that it's supposed to be keeping me calm, but illusionary magic tends to agitate me."

Gerald got multiple reports, seperating them mentally.

'The lack of emotion is disturbing...' Gerald suppressed a shudder, sitting forward further.

"I suppose I was looking for your opinion. Sorry if I was unclear." Gerald smiled, a tiny, barely noticeable thing. The folks at mission 2 got some support it seemed, probably from Merlin. James was loitering around his office still...

"Give me a second, if you will." He spoke slowly, before exhaling, splitting himself was a tad more difficult...

"There we go. So, I suppose I have your reports, that was a part of this. Still, we feel we must gauge emotions here. Make sure you don't turn your guns towards us instead of the demons... I'm sure you understand, despite how uncomfortable this is for you people."

"There we go. So, a demon prince showed up to your mission? I suppose he's the new presence.... No need to be worried, he's heavily sedated. He won't be bothering anyone for an hour or two, and by then he'll be locked away.

"Now, Your mission must have been... stressful. An angel got wounded, but other than that the injury report isn't that thick. You've been lucky. Now, you may leave if you wish, though we would prefer you stick around for a quick moment, to gauge your emotions."

-

Gerald sighed, rubbing his temples in his office. Mental magic was the second toughest type of magic, and that spell took a heavy toll. He looked at the reports, halfheartedly. He already read most of it, through James, but he'd need to revise it for his superiors. He'd be alerted if one of the mind-clones saw an abnormality, an especially twisted mind or hostile action.

"There we go. So, a demon prince showed up to your mission? I suppose he's the new presence.... No need to be worried, he's heavily sedated. He won't be bothering anyone for an hour or two, and by then he'll be locked away.

"Now, Your mission must have been... stressful. An angel got wounded, but other than that the injury report isn't that thick. You've been lucky. Now, you may leave if you wish, though we would prefer you stick around for a quick moment, to gauge your emotions."

Huh. Apparently that had, in fact, been the actual Abaddon.

That said a lot about either the ranks of demon princes or the mysterious operative who had intervened in the mission. Though she certainly would have preferred it be the former, Lyra had a gut feeling that the latter was probably the correct explanation. Still, it was somewhat reassuring to know that SLICE had such a powerhouse on their side; it didn't look like she'd have to worry about useless back-up at this organization.

But there would be time to think about that later.

"My emotions?" Gone from the soldier's voice were the slight hints of annoyance. "Er... That's fine, I suppose. Go ahead and do whatever you need to do; I'll do my best to accommodate."

This wouldn't be the first time Lyra had been subjected to such an examination, and while she found them bothersome, she did acknowledge their relevance. It'd be quite the disaster if one of her fellow agents suddenly decided to go postal, and if all it took to avoid that was answering a few questions every now and then? Heh, that was a price that anyone should be willing to pay. "Ready whenever you are, sir."

"I suppose I was looking for your opinion. Sorry if I was unclear."

Will shrugged. He was about to open his mouth and comment on that, but the doctor spoke again, so he decided not to.

"Give me a second, if you will."

"Yeah, okay." "Can't we be done already?" Honestly, he didn't know what to say about it. What kind of opinion? It wasn't like it was explained much to them, nor were they given a reason for why they were attacking the demons. To him, it seemed more of a test than anything else. Still, he didn't think he would be allowed to say that aloud. He was fairly sure he wasn't allowed to question what he was told to do. Not knowing had both good and bad sides.

"There we go. So, I suppose I have your reports, that was a part of this. Still, we feel we must gauge emotions here. Make sure you don't turn your guns towards us instead of the demons... I'm sure you understand, despite how uncomfortable this is for you people."

"I don't have much to say when it comes to that. I'm not sure if you have been informed of it, but my powers tends to have a presence on my mind that numbs my emotions. It does not numb my morals, so you don't have to worry about me attacking you." Will then decided to add a little more, trusting the other a bit. "It wasn't a pleasant experience. But I'll be fine. Most of all, I just want to go to bed, relax, and sleep for a while."

"I suppose I was looking for your opinion. Sorry if I was unclear."

Opinion?

"Give me a second, if you will."

He paused.

"There we go. So, a demon prince showed up to your mission? I suppose he's the new presence.... No need to be worried, he's heavily sedated. He won't be bothering anyone for an hour or two, and by then he'll be locked away."

How would they know what sedatives work on them?

"Now, Your mission must have been... stressful. An angel got wounded, but other than that the injury report isn't that thick. You've been lucky. Now, you may leave if you wish, though we would prefer you stick around for a quick moment, to gauge your emotions."

Actually, it was surprisingly tame compared to the other jobs.

The man sighed and began rubbing his temples.

"All I ask is that you don't dig too far." I'll know if you do.

"Sure I suppose I can stick around, not much else to do," he replied.

He wondered how Will was handling this, he would have to ask him later, although he was also worried about whether Medea would try anything. He wanted to trust her, as she was his teammate, but he doubted her forgiveness of Will was sincere. Dr. Mann seemed distant somehow, so he doubted that he had his full attention, though that could mean any number of things in a place like this.

"Alright then, let's get this over with." Despite the seperation, all said this in tandem. Funny how people disliked the idea of others in their psyches. Still, only one left right away. The following couple of hours were miserable for Mann, but his clones did their jobs, helping some cope with the murders they were forced to commit, some revealed their history, one confessed to crimes previous this job. He would have to be terminated, of course, but Gerald was touched he was trusted that much.

When it was over, Gerald dropped the illusions, noticing it was 9 pm.

"... Eh, might as well go to bed." Gerald got up, hoping tomorrow would be a day of nothing, those were fun.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________

"-Yes, yes, we'll send some people out to go look for them." James raised both hands to the big, chainmail wearing motherfucker who had cornered him. Templars missing in the woods somewhere, yadda yadda. Fourth mission given that day, surprisingly. Demons seemed to be rather vindictive, but luckily SLICE wasn't on their radar yet. However, Templars were, and they were already getting hit. Hard.

James made his way through the church, finding his office and clicking on the PA system.

"6 am... oh well.

Ahem, rise, shine, report to the main hall. We've got a lot of missions and none of them are specialized. Find the mssion board when you're ready, you have all day, others don't."

"Ahem, rise, shine, report to the main hall. We've got a lot of missions and none of them are specialized. Find the mssion board when you're ready, you have all day, others don't."

As the screechy PA system relayed the message throughout the barracks, Lyra groaned, rolling over in her bed and barely resisting the urge to wrap her pillow around her ears. Christ, this whole early morning wake-up was going to become a daily thing, wasn't it? If she was going to make it through the week, she'd really need to stockpile up on coffee...

Though her irritation refused to fade so easily, the soldier was up and out of bed in a matter of minutes. A quick cold shower helped to shake the last vestiges of sleep from her mind, and a mere twenty minutes after the announcement had rung out Ms. Summers was ready to head downstairs and face the day.

GRRRRRRRGGGGGLLLLLL~

...Well, she'd be ready to face the day after she got some food in her gut.


Though it took a few minutes and a bit of exploration, Lyra finally managed to track down SLICE's cafeteria. Considering the building was only half-finished, the eatery had a surprisingly decent selection; a wider variety would've been nice, sure, but the soldier was willing to take whatever she could get. It felt like she hadn't eaten in a week.

Snatching up a tray, a glass, and a couple of plates, Lyra made her way down the rather standard breakfast set-up, selecting some bacon, a couple of pancakes drowning in syrup, a nice, crimson apple, and some whole milk to finish things off. Tossing a few bills at the man working the register, the soldier, carefully balancing her breakfast, ventured out to one of the long, mostly empty tables that filled the majority of the cafeteria's space; it looked like she was the first one here.

Well, hopefully that wouldn't last for long, she mused as she eagerly tucked into her food. Hopefully some of the other agents would show up soon; it'd be nice to get to know some of her comrades.

"Ahem, rise, shine, report to the main hall. We've got a lot of missions and none of them are specialized. Find the mssion board when you're ready, you have all day, others don't."

Will didn't wake up this time, as he had already been awake. All together, between wanting to be anywhere apart from where he was now, and his mind going from the sensation of crushing people with telekinesis and the sight of Lucas' snake-hand, he found himself sleeping less than two hours, not counting the nap he had taken earlier, after the psych eval. With that added, it would be around 5 hours. Which was 10 too few compared to what he'd prefer. As he heard the message, his mind instantly told him that it meant that he could just lie in bed until he was ready, and so he did. Will was staring at the ceiling, and he let a small sigh out as he closed his eyes, once again trying to relax.

However, after a while he got out of the bed, having decided that he should probably go get something to eat. He hadn't bothered to the day before, for different reasons. After getting dressed in a pair of loose pants and a sweater, and then going to the bathroom, he knocked on Lucas' door. His brother was probably awake by now, he tended to be. Will somehow doubted he had left already, though. "Lucas?" he said, yawning in the middle of his brother's name.

"Are you there? Do you want to go get some breakfast?"

Ahem, rise, shine, report to the main hall. We've got a lot of missions and none of them are specialized. Find the mission board when you're ready, you have all day, others don't."

Lucas yawned and forced himself out of bed, he got dressed, checking his arm again to make sure it was his even after all the shifting he had done with it the night prior, checking that the skin of his hand wasn't writhing under its own power or something of that sort. He heard a knock at the door soon after having gotten dressed, and shrugged and stopped staring at his hand.

"Are you there? Do you want to go get some breakfast?"

"Yeah, I'm here, lets go eat I'm starving," he opened the door and walked out into the hallway, forcing himself to smile, "How are you feeling? I'm feeling like having waffles, I hope they have those."

"It burns John, please make it stop, please make it-" SCREAMING
Their flesh was melting as the rays permeated the chamber and the electrical fires consumed them. There was nothing he could do for them. The room around him was coated in blood and he could only hear the screaming, the unholy screaming emanating from what remained of his comrades souls.
GODHELPUSWHYWONTITSTOP?

"Ahem, rise, shine, report to the main hall. We've got a lot of missions and none of them are specialized. Find the mission board when you're ready, you have all day, others don't."

John heard the announcement and pulled himself out of bed. Another day. He clothed himself and made sure his pistol was loaded and holstered.

He went to the cafeteria and grabbed some food he saw, a glass of orange juice, some dry cereal, and a piece of fried ham.
He sat at the same table as one of the woman he saw during the previous mission. He felt that she was human and therefore less likely to try to kill him.

Lyra flashed a quick smile as one of the other D3 recruits slid into a nearby seat. Unmindful of the strands of syrup she sent flying through the air, the soldier waved her hand, fork and all, through the air in greeting; it was about time she got some company!

"Hey there!" she called out cheerily, talking around a mouthful of bacon. "Glad to see I'm not the only one who actually gets up on time."

Hmm... She didn't think she'd met this guy before. Sure, she'd seen him in the barracks and on the battlefield yesterday, but at least to her knowledge, this was the first time they were actually exchanging pleasantries. Washing down her half-chewed food with a swig of milk and letting her fork and knife clatter onto the tray, Lyra extended a hand towards her fellow agent. "I'm Lyra, by the way. Lyra Summers."

John looked at the woman with a blank face for a moment and returned the gesture by shaking her hand.
"Nice to meet you Lyra. I'm John."
He felt the pulse in her hand in that brief moment of contact and pulled his hand back, his suspicion was confirmed she was human.
"So, how long have you been here? This base I mean."

"Yeah, I'm here, lets go eat I'm starving." Lucas came out from the room and smiled, if a bit forced. "How are you feeling? I'm feeling like having waffles, I hope they have those."

"I dunno. And I'm fine." He yawned, and stretched. It didn't really make him feel more awake. He didn't think anything apart from a large dose of caffeine or sugar would. For a short moment, his eyes lingered on the arm Lucas had transformed into that snake-creature-thing-whatever-the-fuck-it-was, making his distance from it by standing on the opposite side of Lucas. "I'd like some energy-drinks, and coffee. Both. And pizza. You know where the cafeteria is, right?" Even if Lucas didn't, he'd probably find out, something Will wasn't in the mood to do himself.

"I'd like some energy-drinks, and coffee. Both. And pizza. You know where the cafeteria is, right?"

"I think so, it won't be hard to find at any rate," he grinned and laughed inwardly at Will's appetite, though he doubted the cafeteria had pizza this early in the morning.

He led the way to the cafeteria, it wasn't hard to find and he remembered enough of the layout from earlier so they were soon there. He looked over the menu, sadly no waffles, but pancakes were an acceptable substitute, so he loaded up his plate with those and a donut or two, before walking out to find a seat, leaving Will to despair over the lack of pizza.

He saw a couple of people he recognized from before, the man introduced himself, and he picked up their names as John and Lyra respectively. He walked over to sit next to them "Mind if we sit here?" he asked, giving a glance over his shoulder back at Will.

"Nice to meet you Lyra. I'm John."

Though it was subtle, Lyra still felt John's fingers brushing against her wrist for just a second too long. There didn't seem to be any malice or cruel intentions behind the gesture, but it still struck her as a bit... odd.

Ah well. Odd was to be expected in this line of work.

"So, how long have you been here? This base I mean."

"The base? It's been all of..." The solider paused for a split second, flicking her fingers around as she mentally counted. "If you count the first night, this'll be my third day. You've been around for about the same amount of time, right? Thought I saw you when we were all moving in the other day."

"Mind if we sit here?"

"Not at all," Lyra responded cheerfully as she turned to face the newcomers. "Nice to see you again, er... Will, right? Or are you Lucas and he's Will," she continued, pointing at the younger boy behind Lucas. "Sorry, still trying to get used to everyone's names."

Lucas had gone over to most crowded table in the cafeteria, this crowd being two people, and Will mentally facepalmed. Why was he looking for people to talk, in the morning, when they could just as well have been eating in silence? At least he knew one of them, Lyra, from before, and she seemed to be a friendly person, so it should be okay. Then again, he had probably made a bad impression on her before, with his joke...

Or, Will could just sit on a different table, but then he might have to sit with a stranger without Lucas there, which he really didn't want either. A few years spent mostly inside the same house without interacting too much with people did that. Besides, Lucas would probably comment on it, and Will would seem rude.

"Geez, why I am even thinking about where to sit?" he asked himself, before asking for a red bull, a cup of coffee, and several kinds of danish pastries.

He then lifted them with telekinesis -if he had been too tired to use telekinesis like this, then he would have been too tired to carry the stuff in his arms as well- and made his way over to where Lucas was now sitting, and sat down besides him. Drinks and pastries were placed on the table, and he started eating, but not before having murmured:

"Hi."

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