/===================( - Port Island - SEES Co-Ed Dorm - )====================\
| On paper, this building is a co-ed dormitory for students of Gekkoukan High |
| to live in for whatever reason. In practice, thanks to meddling by Shuji |
| Ikutsuki, this is the home of SEES. Keeping close to one as protection from |
| the Shadow threat, this is where almost all of them come at night. |
| The lobby of the dorm is quite spacious, bearing an appearance akin to a |
| hotel lobby... all the way down to a sign-in sheet on the counter to keep |
| track of comings and goings. Brown, earthy tones are the dominant colors, |
| with a green floor with little yellow and orange tile patterns. A few |
| couches face around a table at an unfavorable distance from the small old |
| CRT TV in the corner. In the back is a small counter and dining table. |
| Generous numbers of lamps keep the area well lit at night. Two restrooms, |
| divided by gender, are off to the side of the hallway leading up to the |
| staircase. The staircase is something of a square spiral that leads to the |
| higher floors. |
| Most of the SEES members spend their time here. One of the most common |
| subjects among each other are primers on their own strengths and weaknesses |
| in battle, spoken in peculiar amounts of self-aware detail. The only real |
| downside to living here is that in order to get to Gekkoukan on time, one |
| has to take the monorail. |
|===============================( - Players - )================================|
|===============================( - Objects - )================================|
| The Possessed Table |
|================================( - Exits - )=================================|
| Up <U>: SEES Dorm - Living Quarters |
| Out <O>: Port Island |
In anticipation of today's social call, Tomomi gave any Strega members who wanted to come along a wooden box, about the size of a mailbox. The wooden boxes are crude and unfinished plywood boxes, but put together in sturdy ways. Some of them shake a little bit, hum, or otherwise make mysterious noises. Your instructions with the boxes are to be careful with them, and to otherwise not worry, as she will instruct you what to do with the boxes once they arrive at The Location. Just assume they are housewarming gifts.
Tomomi takes the Strega team to a charming looking dormitory on Port Island. It seems like a wealthy, well-kept, and safe place... the opposite of Nyx's church entirely. The sun is setting, though it's still far from the appointed time for supernatural shenanigans, a time when people aren't afraid to walk the streets. The Strega mob looks a little intimidating approaching as a unit.
Tomomi stands about a block from the SEES dorm and looks toward it, addressing her fellows. "I think it would be best to get inside before we deploy our helpful presents. I can get in easily enough and let people in, unless someone wants to try knocking on the front door of course."
"Certainly," Takaya says, who is walking along with Tomomi. It's the middle of February and the shirtless one is still supernaturally immune to all trivial environmental effects. Being supernaturally hard will do that to a man. "The rest of you find another entrance. I will draw their attention to the front door."
With that order, Takaya begins to walk right up to the front door of the SEES dorm. He is making no effort to be quiet or stealthy. He wants the dorm to see him coming and react appropriately.
Rin Hayashi does not actually have her backpack today. This is possibly a first. (It is at the Church of Nyx.)
What she has is a box, which has has tucked under one arm, and a burger from Wild Duck, which may or may not have been legally acquired. She is currently stuffing the remnants of an American-style double bacon cheeseburger into her mouth while she walks. Since Rin hasn't actually eaten since yesterday, it is disappearing pretty quickly.
She wads up the empty greasy paper and lobs it in the general direction of a trash can. It actually makes it in. Still with her mouth full, she attempts to indicate with one hand that she is both ready and going to follow Tomomi, but it's a difficult hand signal and she may not be getting across the right impression.
Toumei is here! He's wearing his stylized raven-themed drama mask, and black, tight-fitting clothing. He looks down at the box, peering at it curiously. His hands move along the edges of the box as if he can't decide whether to take a peek or not, but Tomomi's insturctions stifle that curiosity. He looks to the others, nodding at Takaya's own orders, and begins moving around the side of the dormitory, looking for an alternate entrance. He's sure Takaya will find a way to open it once the time comes.
Chidori's usual gothloli outfit was supplemented this cold February evening with something warm-looking, albeit also distinctly gothloli in design. Unlike Takaya, she had no resistance to inclement weather, despite her best efforts.
Considering SEES already knew who she was, she was not bothering with any sort of disguise. With her flaming red hair and white gothloli outfit, she stood out... although any spotters on SEES's side might be hard-pressed to detect any sort of resonance from her or the rest of the Strega posse.
Holding both her hatchets in one hand, Chidori held the box she had been given in the other, as far away as she could, like it was filled with disgusting insects. Considering the low droning buzz emanating from it, this may very well have been the case.
Aigis is on the way to the dorms rather than in the dorms already. She seems to be in a hurry to get back but can't actually run because she has a Koro-Chan on a leash whom she has to keep pace with. She walks at a quick, brisk pace but has not yet turned the corner to see Strega amassing at the steps, so to speak. She is murmuring hurriedly at Koromaru, which is probably inaudibly, who barks loudly, which probably is not inaudible at all.
Seiichi seems just about the opposite of The Shirtless One. He's covered from head to toe, a smart looking suit in black. Gloves, boots, even a cowel to cover the hair and a featureless mask. One half black and the other white. Under one arm is that nice box he was given, and on his back is strapped a two handed no-dachi. Oh yes, plenty of disguise for this one. Since he's /met/ more than a few SEES in his more pleasent face.
Wouldn't do to be revealed. Not yet at least.
He strolls along easily enough though, silent and curiously watching the others. This /is/ his first little op he's been on with this group. He isn't quite sure what to expect...
...but he's sure it will be more than entertaining.
Natasha's box is held in a leather satchel, which is currently slung over her shoulder. Despite the cold she isn't making much of an effort to keep her coat wrapped around her, maybe she's inspired by Takaya's impressive cold resistance? And how could someone of Russian descent show weakness to cold, anyway? It's disgraceful.
"I am more partial to finding my own way in..." She states. While open windows might be a rare sight in February, she's got the knowledge and tools to silently open one, even if it was locked. Of course, she may not be ready for SEES's unique security.
She laughs quietly as Takaya walks right up to the main door. She would not try something so bold, but it's good to see their fearless leader is up to the task. After tightening the belt around her coat, she quickly disappears into the darkened alley by the side of the dorm. She'll stay hidden until she wants to be seen, or until she gets inside the Dorm.
It's a quiet, lazy day for ALLCAPS TITLE Shiki Ichimonji. The last few days have all seen him leave town and only come back home a little late, so today? He's taking it easy a little, lazing about with a pile of manga on the lounge's largest couch. He's got homework to do, but sheesh, that can wait!
Certainly, nothing out of the ordinary is going to break him out of his nice afternoon, right?
He perks up at the faint sound of Koromaru barking from outside. Shiki loves that dog. And in a flash, he's up, ready to come greet him (and Aigis, presumably), once he'll be back! But before he can reach the door, he catches sight of something through the window... Or rather, someone.
The goggled boy stops in his tracks. Wait. He has never seen Takaya in person, but the young man has a very distinctive appearances, and Shiki has seen some files! What the... "Um, everyone?" He calls out to whoever might be in the vicinity! "Isn't that...?"
It's a quiet evening in the dorm... though only quiet in the sense that most of the students are in their rooms studying. A few of them have gathered downstairs in the lounge area, sitting around the table with their books; the moment Shiki alerts them as to the fact Takaya Sakaki is coming up the steps, however, they look out the window-- and then hurry off to find one (or all) of the senpais.
Mitsuru wasn't home... but that just meant they went looking for Shinjiro and Akihiko instead. Thus it is that Shinjiro comes swiftly down the stairs a few moments later, crossing over to Shiki.
"When did he get here?" is his idea of a greeting, concern momentarily flickering behind his eyes to remember that Aigis and Koromaru are still out there.
Yoshiro somehow managed to beat Aigis back to the dorm with a special delivery in tow! He hasn't yet worked out the sheer significance of the actual address beyond 'it's the dorm.' He's always been kind of an idiot like that, though perhaps a reflex that has become second nature thanks to how life tends to go for him.
He's just set this small box down on a table in the kitchen when a couple of his fellow dorm dwellers mention something. A goodly number of them suddenly go up the stairs. Yoshiro has no earthly idea what's going on.
If people are running up the stairs, maybe someone important's supposed to be here? He didn't hear anything, though. Since he /is/ often asked to get the door or change the channel on the TV or what have you, it's just second nature for him to amble up to the door to see who's there.
At one of the tables in the SEES general gathering area, a silver-haired head is bent over a notebook, a black-gloved hand deftly looping a pen in lazy, thoughtful spirals. Akihiko is, as always, engaged in his daily routine; training in the pre-dawn hours, school during most of it, more training after school, and after a shower and something to eat (usually provided by Shinji), has settled down to review what he needs to for the upcoming college entrance examinations.
That is, until Shiki alerts them to the presence of Takaya.
The heavy footsteps coming from the stairs causes him to finally lift his head, closing his textbook and unfolding his body carefully off his seat. "Just now, it looks like," he mutters towards Shinjiro, though he does not go towards the front door to look out at the window. "Is someone upstairs monitoring the situation through the security system?"
Regardless, he's already pivoting, to move further into the building. Par the course, considering he's usually the first person to move when /action/ is required. In his mind, someone just made a move to the front door. Hence, he's going to check out the back.
"Good, Takaya," Tomomi says, nodding to the shirtless man about his approach-from-the-front plan. He does make a somewhat intimidating distraction. She looks to the others. "So now this is simple - go inside, and when sufficiently inside, open the box and stand back. An out of the way area is best. If possible..."
Normally the direct approach is really Tomomi's method, but not today. Today she needs to find something like a heating vent with which to enter the building to make good on her own instructions. This would be best done if she were smaller, so she simply sets down her box and takes a few steps out of the line of sight of any immediate onlookers. That being said, it is still in the sight of god and everyone when she shifts down in to a form maybe a third of her size - a creepy little goblin with green skin and a pair of mechanic's overalls. Then she picks up the box again, hoisting it over her (its?) back, and hops off toward the side of the dorm.
Takaya is a man without fear of death or pain. This eliminates most inhibitions that would keep him from doing things. It doesn't matter to him if it's an enemy base teeming with people who want to kill him. Takaya will walk right up to it like he was any other visitor, standing at the door for a moment. He glances back toward the barking for a moment, then raps crisply on the door three times.
Takaya wants the house focused totally on him... just for a few moments. It doesn't have to be more than a minute or two. It just needs to be long enough.
Yoshiro, first to the door, might answer it if he is so inclined. If he looks through the peephole, he only sees Takaya and the box under his arm. One hippie, alone. Hardly cause for alarm (unless he's been briefed).
Rin Hayashi watches Tomomi do her trick with interest, finally managing to choke down the last of the burger and wishing she'd had the foresight to do something like 'steal a Coke, too'.
Rin does follow. She is already, compared to most of the other members of Strega, small and very skinny. Squeezing through a vent is not a problem, and she's used to breaking and entering anyway.
While Tomomi finishes her adjustment, Rin goes about trying to get the aforementioned little entrance open. She has a screwdriver in her pocket, apparently, and is not adverse to just unscrewing and prying.
Chidori scowled at Tomomi, but remained silent. If the box was filled with bees or something, Chidori would certainly be standing back. Quite far back, indeed.
For someone dressed like a Harajuku refugee, Chidori could blend into the background surprisingly effectively. This was probably due to Takaya being far more noticeable in almost any situation, and somehow more durable despite his utter lack of armour. Strega had about enough people to surround the building if need be; Chidori decided that her skills were best utilized supporting someone else, like the people who were assaulting the front door.
It wasn't like gothloli clothing was conducive to crawling around in vents, anyway.
Natasha hovers close to the group long enough to hear Tomomi's instructions. 'Find a place to set the box, open it, and stand back' is it? Seems easy enough. She misses Tomomi's creative method of entering the dorm, which is fortunate because then she might be tempted to do something similar, but her own shadow form is considerably less subtle than she is normally.
Finally approaching a window, she slowly peeks inside from around the corner with the aid of a small mirror. That, among other tools, was hidden in the many unseen pockets in her coat. Once she's satisfied she's found a window leading into an area where no one is currently gathered she hides the mirror again and removes a small glass cutter. For now her plan is simple, cut a hole large enough to open the window from the inside, then sneak in.
Plans have a way of going awry, but that's part of the fun.
Toumei looks at the box again when he gets his instructions. "Well damn. This is going to make quite the impression, I think." He shakes his box a little, the humming and buzzing becoming more strident as the contents are jostled. He steps back in surprise when he sees Tomomi... transform. "A nic trick. You'd make a great actor if you wanted to, I'm sure." Toumei chuckles, before he sits back and waits, stomping a bit to keep his warmth up in the chill January air and using his other hand to add some heat. Man, keeping yourself mobile sometimes means you get some discomfort.
Seiichi...did bring something to drink. He'd even be willing to share later. Possibily. If anyone things to ask. However he glances towards the front door and...looks like the boss has that well covered. So instead Seiichi follows the little breaking and entering specalist. No, he can't crawl though the vent, with with a two handed sword on his back. However he can help get the vent off.
"Tell me where to pry." He says with a slightly amused tone in his voice. He's never /actually/ done any B&E like this. So its rather new for him as he crouched down next to Rin to quietly help her get into the place. He'll back up the outside team when the time comes to do so, but for now...well an extra pair of hands is an extra pair of hands. Always a bit of help.
Shinjiro doesn't look around, but he knows Aki's there, and knows that the other boy isn't joining them at the front door. "I put somebody on it, so Mitsuru can review it later," Shinjiro responds lowly. He doesn't stop Akihiko or ask what he's doing when the other boy moves to check the back; as per their long friendship, Shinjiro already knows exactly what went through Aki's mind, and the decision is sound.
With Akihiko covering the back, Shinjiro feels comfortable to turn his attention to the front door. He moves up beside Yoshiro, noticing that the younger boy doesn't appear to know who exactly is calling.
"It's Strega," he says shortly. Shinjiro keeps a bastard sword behind the counter for occasions just like this, but he doesn't yet reach for it. He's about to open the door, or tell Yoshiro to, when suddenly... he gets a call. He grunts annoyedly, turns to one side, and angrily murmurs a short conversation. Midway through it, he prompts Yoshiro, "Open the door," and his grey eyes turn towards Shiki in a tacit order to help him deal with Takaya.
Shinjiro's parting words on his conversation are somewhat louder than the rest of his conversation, possibly because they're 'No harder'n taking the trash out, right?' He hangs up afterwards, and does his best to stand right in the doorway himself, preventing Takaya from getting at either Yoshiro or Shiki easily. Or inside, for that matter. "What do you want, Sakaki?"
Koromaru is a trotting along, heading straight for Tomom--no wait, he's not heading straight for Tomomi, he's headnig straight for the one with the most obvious scent. "Arf!" He barks happily, forcing Aigis to run to keep up.
"Koro-Chan! Wait!" She has no idea there's Strega here.
Of course, Koro-Chan is just thinking VISITORS at the moment, at least until he starts getting closer--his ears lay back and he keeps on barking. "Ruff! Ruff!" The smelly one is still smelly and not covered in chest wounds, it's not too late to help ^.^!
Or so Aigis seems to assume is Koromaru's state of mind, her line pressing into a small line as she runs into view, farther back--but Koro-Chan, well.
Koro-Chan leaps for Rin and starts pawing at her, standing on his hindlegs, and sniffing rapidly at her all of a sudden. WOAH THERE.
"Ah?" Yoshiro turns his head as his hand is on the doorknob. It's Strega? Yoshiro gets his hand off the doorknob until Shinjiro prompts to go on ahead and open the door. Should he... not open the door if it's Strega out there?
More importantly, shouldn't he run upstairs and get his Evoker? Rather than chance Shinjiro's irritation (he's already kind of intimidating on an everyday basis), he cracks open the door. Rather than peek out the proper hole, he peeks through the door's crack for several precious seconds.
Whether he gets to open it up all the way or Takaya decides to open it up the rest of the way for him, Yoshiro tries to stand tall (for a given value of, erm, 'tall') in the face of the enemy.
"Um... hello?" He asks nervously as he puts his hands in his pockets.
Shiki may have no idea exactly what Strega is up to, but Shinji's presence alone is already enough to make him feel 50% safer. "Huh... I dunno, I just saw him!" But-- oh, good, Yoshiro is going to get the door.
It doesn't occur to him, at least not right away, that this might just be a distraction, and that Takaya isn't here to sell them fine leather jackets. Akihiko's got the back handled, Shinjiro's busy talking strategy (right?) and then there's the matter of the Strega leader himself.
Nodding the Shinjiro, Shiki places himself in a position to intercept in case Takaya just strolls in and starts shooting! (Note: He proooobably won't do that.) The knives, always hidden in his jacket because the boy is overprepared like that, are swiftly drawn and twirled about recklessly, two of them in each hand. A Shiki appears! Command?
Tomomi locates a vent, and pulls it open with a wrench that she now just sort of has. What Gremlin worth its salt does not have a wrench?
Pushing the box in first, she then crawls inside the duct, letting out a small gremlin snicker. This gets her in to the spirit of the game. The movement is awkward, however, so she has to push it a few good times before she gets a pattern going of push, crawl, push, crawl.
It's not too important to go in very far, though, so this shouldn't take too long. There is a bit of scraping and giggling in the vent for those with good hearing.
Somewhere in the distance, he could hear Koromaru barking. Aigis is home. Some part of him is relieved.
Still, Akihiko manages to get to the back, eyes narrowing faintly when he sees the area deserted. Slipping a finger along the side of a drape, he peers through the small opening. The area outside of the door is empty as well, and the uneasy feeling returns. It's a wide area, and he's just one person, he can't cover everything at the rear.
"Tch," he mutters under his breath. He should've gone back for his jacket. Oh well, no helping it now. Twisting the knob between his fingers, he steps out, locking the appendage behind him and slides his gaze from left to right. Still nothing. Exhaling a quiet breath, watching it manifest in a puff of mist once it leaves his lips, he tugs his collar upwards, feeling the cold hit him, twisting on his heel and quietly moving around the rear perimeter of the building and towards the eastern side.
As if Takaya would do something so crass as bum-rush someone through an open doorway, or start firing blindly in the lobby. This is why he has Tomomi, or /henchmen/. Starting a fight right now would require way too much personal commitment. And what if he slipped on the rug? That would disrupt his ultra-smooth mastermind demeanor. Takaya does glance in through the crack when Yoshiro peeks at him, though he does not try to open it. He lifts his free hand and gives a little wave, smiling like the Buddha.
Then, the door opens properly, and Shinjiro gives him the standard Shinjiro greeting. "Now, is that any way to address a caller at the door," Takaya says, pleasantly. He gives a short, not-especially-low master-student bow to the men at the door to properly assert status before continuing. "Here I am, coming to the front door and knocking, and you treat me like a common /criminal/. I thought the Specialized Extracurricular Execution Squad," he delights in /every word/, rolling them in his mouth like smoke, "was supposed to be made up of model students."
Takaya makes no move to enter. The dog is apparently on someone else. Oh well, this is why he brought several backup cultists. He doesn't recognize Yoshiro, so it's time to introduce himself properly. "Have you been told about the coming of our Mother?" he asks of Yoshiro, who seems to be potentially most receptive to his message. "She will be the release of humanity from the endless cycle of desire that causes us to suffer. In our Mother's embrace there is freedom from all want or need."
Rin Hayashi isn't exactly a /specialist/. She just knows what she's doing.
Once the entrance is open (with Seiichi's help), Rin lets Tomomi up first and tries to look as nonchalant as possible. Go in after spreading out a little so that they don't all run into each other inside the tunnel. Rin eventually turns and prepares to pull herself up -
Right before a dog starts yapping at her. Rin doesn't have anything against dogs, but this one is absolutely in her way."Push off," she says, roughly trying to push Koromaru a little bit away when he paws at her, standing up on his back legs. "Goddamn, nobody said they had a guard dog. Push /off/, I said!" The last only a little louder, hissed through her teeth at Koromaru as she tries to convince him to go away by shoving, then turning to squeeze down into the vent.
She wishes she hadn't thrown away the burger wrapper now. She could probably distract him.
The sound of Koromaru barking at some other poor cultist doesn't distract Natasha from her task. The glass-cutting takes a few minutes, but that just gives her plenty of time to think. About how wonderful Nyx is and how much better they all will be once everything is ended. And hey, Takaya is getting to the good stuff right now! Go boss!
Finally, the hole is cut. Carefully removing the glass fragment, she slowly reaches a pair of fingers inside and unlocks the window. She returns the glass cutter to the mysterious hidden pocket she removed it from, and takes one final glance around her to make sure no SEESite wandered outside and in her general vicinity.
Satisfied, she quietly opens the window and crawls inside. Her dexterity makes this the easiest part. She should be somewhere in the back of the dorm, if she guessed correctly. She can only faintly hear the commotion going on in the lobby.
She begins looking for a place to set the box. Or maybe someone in SEES will find her first!
Chidori cocked her head to the side, listening to the yapping of the resident SEES pet. While normally Chidori did not have anything against animals, Koromaru had a /Persona/, which was just /weird/. At least it meant that he could be considered a combatant, rather than Strega adding animal abuse to their portfolio.
She listened some more, but apart from what sounded like Rin cursing, there was no further call for assistance. Oh well, might as well continue backing up the front door people.
A faint smirk as Takaya went into his door-to-door evangelical spiel. It was highly unlikely for SEES to be swayed by the truth that Strega preached, but hope sprung eternal.
Seiichi has /no/ clue what he's doing. That makes her a specialist in his eyes.
Thankfully, Seiichi /is/ there to distract the puppy. "Just go!" He hisses back as he reaches for the collar of the puppy to just try to jerk him away from Rin. "I'll cover your back." Awwwr. What teamwork huh? Seiichi seems perfectly willing to add animal abuse to his list of transgressions.
This might end poorly for him, at least it would if he didn't have his own Persona to protect himself with.
Fudge. Dogs. Toumei looks in the direction of the oncoming Koromaru, and he tilts his head. "Hey now. Uh.... Good dog? Nice dog?" He glances at the vent. He can't squeeze through that, they don't build those things for people to crawl through them! He kinda envies Tomomi for a moment.
Oh, there, window. Toumei sort of puts his back up against the side of the dorm and slides over towards that window, hoping Koromaru doesn't decide to try to have some bird for a late night snack. Seiichi comes to the rescue, and he nods, quickly moving to try to climb in behind Rin. His sacrifice will be remembered... though likely not attempted to be retireved.
Dislike shows its fangs plainly in Shinjiro's narrowed stare as he regards Sakaki. The phone put away, his full attention is on the Strega leader. This cold regard lingers up until Takaya comments on his rudeness; at that juncture, Shinjiro actually laughs. The sound is bitter with an unwanted familiarity; Shinjiro knows Takaya pretty well, and wishes he didn't.
Model students? "You ought to know by now I'm the exception," he replies, voice crawling with deprecation-- and not all of it necessarily aimed at Takaya.
"Comin -here- to preach?" Scorn pulls at the corner of Shinjiro's mouth, his expression chilling of any of that familiarity. Raw dislike reappears on his features. "You must be desperate. Not gonna find a lot of receptive ears -here-." And yet, he moves just a little, his shoulder partially shifting in front of Yoshiro as if to shield him from the proselytism.
The sudden clamor of Koromaru barking not far away is impossible to miss. Shinjiro stiffens, eyes turning briefly from Takaya in the direction of the commotion. "But that's not what you're really here to do, is it." He doesn't say anything, but the comment itself-- and the brief regard of his gaze on Shiki and Yoshiro-- implies they can-- and perhaps should-- search for the source of the disturbances.
UPSTAIRS, A SECOND OR THREE AGO
Hitoshi had d things going on outside of his little room in the second floor of the dormitory, which had prompted him to actually put his inkpen down and actually stop writing. Eyeglasses were removed, and Hitoshi moved to the door to open it up. As he did, he'd find Akihiko passing the door, saying something about going around back... And the fact there were other 'unpleasant' noises coming from around the dorm, he began to assume that Something Was Wrong(TM).
UPSTAIRS - NOW, YO
Instead of following Akihiko on outside, he had told the older student that he'd remain inside. With his fanny pack strapped to his belt, he looked toward something sitting on his nightstand... something that looks like it straps to one's arm.
"Next time," he tells himself. For now, he'll stick with what he knows. Leaving his room, he heads for the stairs, stepping off of the stairs and seeing what's going on... and he groans to himself quietly.
It's the canines!
Aigis slows down as she sees the two (well three with Toumei slinking in there). She squints at them and looks to Rin first who has Kormoaru hopping at her. At least until she pushes him away. Koromaru whines, then cocks his head as Rin starts squeezing on in--and...
Well, he's a smart dog. He lays flat and starts growling at the individuals. As Rin pushes in, he leaps forward and tries to bite her--in the leg! That's not sanitary! ... for Koromaru, maybe. Will Seiichi stop the canine commander?!
"What are you doing?" Aigis asks, this time focusing on Seiichi. "I remember you. Why are you here?" She is not nearly as smart as Koromaru otherwise, obviously, she'd be biting Seiichi already instead of giving him a chance to answer.
Yoshiro is a deeply-troubled boy, as many people are, with a lot of things and qualities in his life that he dislikes - very few of which have any sort of easy overnight answer, if any at all. It is this sort of crowd that Takaya can draw in in droves, the promise of ending all suffering by the grace of their kind mother underneath that umbrella of his charisma. It is very difficult to rebuke his gestures outright, however feigned the manners may be. If even at all.
"I, er..." Yoshiro has problems maintaining eye contact under the weighty question and takes a few steps back - perfect space in which for Shinjiro to help shield him. His hands are still in his pockets. He doesn't look any less pathetic than he did when the Chariot was trying to chew him up. "I'm... I'm not interested?"
It's not a very confident nor defiant tone of voice, but one of confusion and uncertainty as he casts a glance over to Shinjiro every so often. Especially when he starts laughing, something he's never seen or heard Shinjiro /do/. When Shinjiro looks him in the eyes, he figures out what he's asking.
He looks back to Takaya again. He doesn't know if he's got the courage to try and run past him.
Shiki was prepared to stop a violent Takaya, but he wasn't familiar enough with his style to expect a... gracious, polite one, if rather cocky. He still has his knives at the ready, but he at least relaxes a little. "So what made you decide to grace us with your presence, then?" he asks, cautiously. The model student bit... well, no comment on that.
Crap, Shiki realizes. Takaya isn't a door-to-door salesman at all! He's something far, far worse... A door-to-door evangelist!! "Don't listen to him, Yoshi-san! He's... a bad guy!" Speaking of good guys and bad guys is a habit the boy has been trying to shake himself out of, but from what he's heard about this man, there really... is no better descriptor!
And then... the sound of Koromaru barking from much closer this time, and Shinji giving him and Yoshiro That Look. ...And while his fellow Eclipse Squad member hesitates to try and get past Takaya, Shiki has no such reservations. He attempts to dash out the door without paying much mind to the Strega leader, and then make his way towards the sound of Koromaru's barking (and therefore Aigis)! ...that is, if Takaya will let him at all.
Tomomi crawls deeper in to the duct, wiggling slightly, and hitting a cross-roads. This should do, she thinks, and so she opens the box. The box is really quite sturdy, so, this involves first working at it with gnarled hands, and then, when that doesn't totally work, popping it open with the wrench.
Inside the box is a teeming mound of cockroaches, crawling all over each other and already desperate to escape. They immediately emerge in to the duct, and start to crawl around through the shaft. A few of them crawl over the Gremlin, but, really, she doesn't mind at all, even when one of them tries to work its way across her eyeball.
Your box may of course not contain roaches, since there are also bees, wasps, crickets, and other unlikeable things in the individual boxes.
As he moves around the corner, Akihiko continues moving, keeping himself low and moving as quietly as possible. Dully, he could hear Shinjiro speaking to Takaya, albeit the words are so muffled thanks to the brick that he can't exactly hear what they're discussing. He'll ask later, but for now he has a job to do.
The preppy pugilist is a big fan of routine, he is comfortable with it, he lives by a schedule. The best way to normally catch his attention is to do something uncharacteristic, or disrupt things from the Usual that he can't help but notice, considering how hapless he is when it comes to every day subtleties.
So it isn't surprising that, while he would've normally passed on without noticing anything, he stops at the movement in his periphery, caused by a drape, fluttering because of an open window with a measured and carefully cut hole within the pane of glass. Internal alarms start ringing inside, adrenaline rockets through his system at the realization that there may be intruders in the premises, and others than the person engaging Shinjiro at the present moment.
Only one way to find out.
Hopefully, this should be warning enough, as well as a surprise.
"Oh no you don't," Seiichi might not be successful but he /is/ going to try to staop Koromaru. Grabbing for his collar to try to jerk him away from tasting Rin. She likely tastes of junk food anyway. You don't want that boy. Really you don't.
He glances over his shoulder then before blinking once behind his mask at Aigis and raising one eyebrow. What was he doing? Really? Wasn't it obvious. "Costumed air conditioning repair services." He deadpans towards her. "Wern't you informed that we were coming? Can you call off your dog? Please?"
Rin Hayashi gets her upper body in the vent before Koromaru bites at her leg.
Rin's leg is under two pairs of pants and is pretty tough. Koromaru does not actually manage to open a bleeding wound, especially with Seiichi right there to drag him off, but it is both surprising and rather painful. She kicks the leg to try to get the dog off, swearing up a storm; her words echo through the vents.
She shoves the box ahead of her as far as she can, so that Tomomi can back up and grab it if she wants. Rin isn't going anywhere with Koromaru snapping at her.
Takaya's encounters with Shinjiro are likely too regular for Shinjiro's tastes. But once Takaya gets a claw into someone, he does not like to let go. Takaya's continued presence is a reminder of Shinjiro's darker times. The smiling madman holds his demeanor even in the face of Shinjiro's contempt and laughter. Shinjiro can see that growing gleam in Takaya's eyes. He's found another mark.
Takaya steps politely to one side as Shiki aims to run by him, allowing the disruption to work in his favor. He tries to step into the dorm in Shiki's wake, focusing mostly on Yoshiro. If he can lock two of them down in dealing with /him/, the others will have more of a chance to continue. And he's still got that box under his arm.
Takaya does not try to get too far -- really, he only intends to get past the door and maybe a step or two past the threshold. Nearby, a window breaks as Akihiko Pilgrim gets moving, but Takaya pays that no mind. He keeps talking in that low, soft voice, looking at Yoshiro.
"You may not think you are interested," Takaya continues. "But you have been deceived by things of the world. This existence, this life -- it is an illusion, a falsehood that divides us from the Mother. It is only pain and suffering because an illusion cannot give us what we cry out for. We yearn to be free of desire, so we may not suffer any longer from its ache."
"I think the guy said, he's -not interested, Sakaki-san."
From the stairwell, Hitoshi appears. And in the fact that Akihiko comes busting through the window... well, for a moment, that catches him off guard, and he looks toward that commotion... but only for a moment, not to be -too- distracted like a kid with ADD that forgot to take his meds.
As he moves forward, Hitoshi crosses his arms quietly, moving toward Yoshiro and quietly nudging him in the back of his shoulder as he moves to stand beside him. He just tilts his head a little bit, looking to Takaya and frowning slightly.
"Isn't this the same song and dance you pulled... a week or so ago?" He smiles pleasantly enough, arms still crossed in front of him...
Even as Takaya let Shiki pass without comment, Chidori moved quickly to bar his way. Where else would Shiki be going but to check out the other Strega people worming their way into the dorm, possibly literally, considering the contents of the boxes?
She held the buzzing box in front of her like a ward, which also had the advantage of keeping it as far away from her as possible.
"It's rude to leave in the middle of a conversation," she stated. Her first words since the mission began. Her other hand tightened on her hatchets. "Stay, and listen. You might learn something."
Natasha was prepared for a lot of things when she snuck into the SEES dorm. She was certainly ready for any number of defenders to burst in through the obvious entrance to the room she entered. But she wasn't quite ready for some knucklehead to burst through the same window she just came in from. Good show, Akihiko, it's not easy to startle Natasha but you pulled it off with your own... special determination.
"Oh my..." She finally says once she recovers from her initial surprise. "I was trying to do as little damage as possible, I had no idea you people cared so little for your residence." She tightens her grip on her satchel, which contains her pest-laden box, while slowly bringing her free hand inside the folds of her burgandy coat. She has a few weapons at her disposal. But what would work best against this boy?
Her mouth curls into a smile. "So tell me... have you accepted Neeks as your savior?" She asks, her foriegn accent adding an odd weight to the word 'Nyx'.
Toumei looks startled and confused, holding his box with all manner of trepidation. At least, provided one can read body language since his face is behind a mask. He mutters about sweat in places he can't do anything about for a moment before he looks up, simply trying to stay obscure and not get too much attention. He'll just be chilling over here, thanks.
Shinjiro lets Shiki run out. He has enough confidence in the boy he trained to believe he will be all right, especially with Akihiko out walking backup. Yoshiro... he's a little more worried about. Especially when that crash of glass sounds. 'Go check it out' rises instantly to his tongue, but he hesitates to send Yoshiro alone--
Hitoshi's arrival is thus something of a godsend. Shinjiro looks over his shoulder at both of them, tilting his head shortly towards the sound of glass shattering. "Go see what happened." That won't require them to go outdoors, after all, which Yoshiro's nerves probably wouldn't be able to take.
He seems perfectly content to stand here and possibly solo Takaya; he can't just run off, after all, not while the Strega leader is here. And now Chidori is stepping up, blocking Shiki's way... great, Shinjiro thinks.
It's obvious Takaya is a walking reminder of Shinjiro's miserable last two years. It's equally clear that he doesn't like it in the least. His eyes narrow further, his temper-- as always-- fraying twice as fast due to the fact Takaya makes him think about shit he'd rather forget. He moves instantly as Takaya tries to gain entry-- Sakaki only gets one step in before Shinjiro is in his face, bare inches away, bristling like a wolf whose territorial boundary was just crossed.
He doesn't reach for his phone quite yet, but his hand moves slightly. "I'm gonna give you one chance to quit whatever you're here for and get out, before I mass-text the dormitory to come down here."
"Costumed air conditioning repairs?" Aigis says, and after some thought, completely falls for it. "Well, certainly, Koro-Chan--don't bite the costumed air conditioner mechanics."
Koromaru is pulled off of Rin by the collar before he can really chow down. His ears lay flat against the side of his head as he whines pathetically at Aigis as if to say: Really, Aigis? /Really/?
Aigis looks at the dog for a few moments, and then nods to the canine companion.
The dog barks something else to her.
Aigis shakes her head, better to leave that aws an element of surprise.
"Koro-Chan tells me you are breaking and entering." She says, glancing back at Koromaru. Gunpowder? Really? "And attemptin the destruction of--"
Akihiko plows through the glass.
"School property which is apparently okay as long as Akihiko-Senpai does it." She says, "Please desist or I will sic Koro-Chan on you. ... again?"
She looks at Koromaru, as if for instruction.
Koromaru continues to look pathetic.
You could probably get a fishhook in Yoshiro's cheek and pull it out a significant distance, but this is going off a bizarre tangent of an unrelated point in so far as getting hooks into someone goes.
A breaking window makes Yoshiro visibly flinch, but he doesn't immediately dash off to see who or what that's about. Such is the power of Takaya's captivation that has ensnared even wearker minds.
He doesn't physically stop him from taking a step or two inside, if Takaya takes them. Yoshiro is the sort of person who probably couldn't physically stop anything other than small children (and even then it's arguably a coinflip).
Yoshiro's eyes are frozen when Takaya locks them onto him. How many times has he been disappointed with life, anyway? Especially so very recently when time was repeating - even in a best case scenario he never did get what he truly wanted. For what petty desires he had in a time of great crisis and concern.
Hitoshi speaks up on Yoshiro's behalf. Yoshiro turns his head briefly to ensure it's indeed him is enough to break him away from Takaya's gaze (for the moment). He flinches a tad exaggeratedly at the nudge and finally removes his right hand from the respective pocket to scratch the side of his head.
Shinjiro gives the command to go see what happened. "Ah!" Yoshiro's head rises with a start. "Y-You're right, senpai, we should." He clears his throat and turns his head over to Hitoshi before taking a couple steps away that soon breaks into a full-out run. He's completely unarmed at the moment (unless someone, say, leaves a damp cardboard box nearby) but maybe having two SEES-ites will intimidate whoever or whatever just broke the window?
Great, Shiki could pass by Takaya without problem!... That was easy. TOO easy, but the boy had never been the kind to look at a gift horse in the mouth in the middle of a tense situation, even if it came from Strega!
And he tries to make his way to find out what's up with Koromaru, but before he can take more than a few steps, he's already stopped by Chidori! Crap, now he's not any closer, it's obvious that Takaya wasn't alone AND they've been split up! Koromaru still barking. The sound of glass shattering. This is Bad.
He's still got those knives ready, though: He might not be able to summon his Persona outside like this, but he doesn't NEED to. All he needs to do is get past her! ...Never mind that passerbys catching weird teenagers all fighting like this outside the dorm would ALSO arouse suspicion. He's not worrying about that right now!!
"I don't need to listen to his crap! How many of you are there? What are you up to?!" Of course, chances are high she won't answer that! With a "thwip" sound, he tosses a pair of knives forward, not aiming to injure but rather to disarm. Without her... weird weapons (and... mystery box?), a dainty-looking girl like her probably won't be able to stop him, right?
Every group needs a Leeroy. Sadly, despite Mitsuru's best efforts, Aki is hers.
The young man rolls into a crouch, though he didn't leave his gamble unscathed - blood is already starting to blossom from a few cuts on his face and staining the pristine white of his collar peeking from the red sweater vest he favors. He doesn't seem to mind his self-inflicted injuries. He's in SEES. They're all masochists here.
He eyeballs the red trenchcoated woman standing before him, his form tightening into readiness at seeing his suspicions confirmed. He's blocking the way to the window, at least, and he's staying there until he gets some answers - namely, what the crap were they trying to pull. Sabotage? Wiretapping? Did someone win the lottery? He didn't know. However, when Natasha mentions something about them caring little for their own residence, he can't help but sweat a little, feeling Mitsuru's shadow at the back of his mind, looming over him with red pinpricks for eyes.
Yeah. He was going to get it later.
The accent is foreign to him, all the more emphasizing the older woman's sultry appearance - she already /looks/ like Carmen Sandiego with the red trenchcoat. "No, thanks, I don't follow basketball," he retorts. "What are you doing here?"
Bugs are still crawling within the ducts, and the Tomomi-gremlin backs up a bit trying to get back to the exit, this work now done. A few still crawl on her, but she still doesn't mind very much, though she pinches one stubborn one between her fingers just because it was there. It crushes in to ichor.
Of course the bugs will crawl on other people in the duct as well, but, they should also get used to things like cockroaches, just as SEES should.
From here, Tomomi can't know how well others have done, so, the question now is go forward, or go back. Her curiosity gets the better of her and she moves forward, opening the duct up in to an empty closet.
"Last week I was collecting a girl you threw away," Takaya murmurs to Hitoshi. "Today, well. We will see."
Takaya is gentle and soft until such point as someone does something to directly impose on him. Until now, he's been keeping his Resonance to a dull hum, barely a ping to the sensitive. Chidori's dampening has likely rendered him almost spiritually invisible. But now the time for softness has ended, because Takaya believes Shinjiro has forgotten his place. He will find that mark later.
Takaya closes in against Shinjiro as he blocks the way. He goes only so far as Shinjiro will physically permit, switching his attention from the fleeing Yoshiro to Shinjiro alone. Takaya's golden eyes bore into Shinjiro's, the red arteries at the edges of his eyes just beginning to throb.
The void within him yawns as he removes the grip from his Resonance, letting the emptiness flow out of him. It's a yawning psychic chasm, a feeling of desolation and lifelessness that sprawls around Takaya like the silent aftermath of Hiroshima. Those in Strega who feel it know that it is a signal that Takaya is nearing the end of his diplomatic mission.
Takaya speaks in a harsh whisper, not looking away from Shinjiro. "Call your friends. Bring them all here. Do you need them to feel secure in my presence?"
Takaya breathes up against Shinjiro's face. "Do you need them to tell you that you shouldn't ask me for what you need? I have some in this box, Shinjiro... enough to numb you for days."
Takaya's thumb runs against the edge of the box, but he doesn't look at it. He's trying to hold Shinjiro in his mind, to push him to do what Takaya knows he /will/ do.
Curse you intelligent dog! Curse youuuuuuuuuuuuu~~ he almost had her.
Seiichi never ever thought that would work. For a moment he seems suprised. He keeps his hold on the dogs collar for the moment so he doesn't go after Rin again. So move your arse Junk Food Girl.
"Ah." A glance at the dog seems to say...really? Is she /really/ for real? Yes. Alright then. I'll just run with this. Operation STALL. Continues!
"Techiniclly." Seiichi points out towards the Toaster. "I'm not breaking and entering. I'm crouching here, and you never actually decided to sic this dog on me so it would be the first time, and not again." Ah yes. Logic.
Rin Hayashi is not Junk Food Girl. Really. Most of the time.
Rin's feet vanish inside the vent once Koromaru is not biting them anymore. She must be a very dedicated air conditioner repair woman! Even though she's not really in costume, which probably breaks it. A little.
Rin starts to squirm her way through the vent, letting Seiichi stall the dog and robot. She retrieves her shoved-forward box and picks her way through the vents. She does not even slow down when she hits Tomomi's bug deployed area. She's seen worse. She's /eaten/ things with bugs on them.
Which way did she /go/, Rin thinks, making a bit of noise as she tries to catch up.
A small twitch of Hitoshi's lips comes up, and he watches Takaya for a moment after his little utterance.
"Threw away. She left this life to return to your twisted little religion," he quietly replies, shaking his head. He watches as he moves on up... and as Yoshiro takes the time to cut out and run, he frowns a little bit. Oh, Yoshiro...
Hitoshi decides to stand there, nearby, watching the exchange between Shinjiro and Takaya. He frowns a little bit, tilting his head and sighing a little...
"Special delivery," Chidori said, quite truthfully. She advanced one step towards Shiki, holding the buzzing box out. "It's a present."
Boots scrunched on the pavement as Chidori prepared to dart to either side, should Shiki try to make a break for it. She'd rather not be the one to start outright violence, since it often led to several varieties of escalation that she wasn't sure they were exactly prepared to deal with. This was supposed to be an insertion mission, not a brawl.
Of course, if it was a brawl SEES wanted...
She tensed slightly, as a ripple through her dampening abilities indicated Takaya's decision to stop being Mister Nice Shirtless Preacher. Oh, well then.
Chidori shook the box slightly. The buzzing grew noticeably in volume. "I don't know what's in here," she said. "I don't think you want to know either."
Natasha's smile doesn't falter when Akihiko shuns the almighty chruch of Nyx (as well as slams her accent, burn), since it was just a stalling tactic to begin with. A tactic she continues with, as she shrugs faux-innocently. "Spreading the good word, that is all. Since this place is one of the most stalwart anti-Neeks locations in the city, it is only fitting we try and convert you all, yes?"
Fortunately for Natasha, she doesn't have to stall for long. She had her free hand near one of many hidden weapons to use in case Akihiko got tired of bantering, but she won't need to use it. She can feel Takaya's resonance even more plainly than the cold air blowing in from the Akihiko'd window. She doesn't need to play around anymore.
She quickly swings the satchel down off of her shoulder, and peels it off the box. The satchel is carelessly tossed to the floor, just as the box is carelessly tossed at Akihiko's face one she partially opened the lid. Whether he catches it or dodges it, the angry angry bees inside probably won't wait around for the lid to be closed once more.
Bees. My God.
... was what Chidori was intending to end on, when Shiki suddenly flung a pair of knives at her. Chidori was prepared for him to attack her straight on, but to disarm was unexpected. As the knived thunked into the wooden box, Chidori made an undignified sound of annoyed surprise as she dropped it, shaking her numbed fingers.
Shiki had successfully disarmed Chidori of the box. Unfortunately, he had also broken the box open.
Fortunately it was February, and the mass of stinging insects (wasps, possibly) inside the box were lying dormant. But enough of them buzzed out angrily, looking for the source of their aggravation.
"Oh, damn," Chidori muttered, backing away hastily. If Shiki wanted to run through a cloud of wasps past her, she would at least enjoy the spectacle.
Shinjiro stops dead when Takaya steps up to meet him. The very corner of one eye flinches a little, his mouth thinning, the line of his jaw drawn as immutably as a sculpted curve in marble. As if to make himself feel better, he reminds himself the discomfort he's feeling now is a small price to pay to keep Takaya away from Yoshiro. Self-sacrificing as always, Shinjiro is... almost to the point of self-harm. And Takaya would of course know that intimately enough to leverage it to the fullest.
He can't feel the details of Takaya's resonance, but experience has given him the ability to discern the movement of supernatural energy. He feels it around him now, that same gentle tide that encouraged his suicidal tendencies-- swayed him to keep on using, week after week.
At first, he says nothing when Takaya asks what he needs to feel secure around him. The silence, momentary as it is, is damning enough evidence of that crack of self-doubt into which Takaya has expertly hooked his claw.
Takaya's breathing ghosts along the taut lines of Shinjiro's face. He hesitates one fatal moment more when Takaya reminds him of his needs-- invites him to take some from the box he's holding. It's been months, but sometimes Shinjiro does remember the way life felt while drugged. It was pleasant in a morbid way, like lying in a glass casket and waiting for the air to run out.
"I don't need anything," he says, though he swallows before he does: trying to hide that mental twitch of longing that plagues even recovered addicts for years afterwards. "Especially not any of your shit. I don't need -anyone- to tell me I shouldn't--"
And then WASPS. Shinjiro's eyes widen, and he forces forward, trying to push Takaya back out the door-- or at least get past him-- in order to drag Shiki back inside and away from the wasps. Shinjiro trusts Shiki to tank Strega, but Japanese wasps? You don't fuck around with those!!
Things are getting kinda ugly at this point. Toumei just does what he needs to do in order to try to put a box into position. There's too much attention going around for that. He waits for it... Waits for a good time. There's got to be one eventually...
"I see." Aigis says, nodding to Seiichi, "Since you wear masks so frequently it can be difficult to tell." She looks over to Koromaru for a moment, and then adds to Seiichi, "You are delaying me. Understood."
Koromaru barks again. Suddenly, Seiichi may feel a presence behind him, a resonance of loyalty, strength, duty--It is not Aigis, who is typically spiritually a blank spot what with requiring both evoker and being a soulless robot. There is no Aigis involved here, really, she is just watching.
If Seiichi looks behind him, he'll notice another dog--this one with another name, big and at least partially on fire.
"Ruff." Cerberus says which wouldn't be so bad if he wasn't spitting fire out of his mouth at Seiichi.
Aigis, meanwhile, moves for the vents which will surely end well for everyone involved ever.
"A present?" Shiki's eyes actually widen a bit at that one, actually entertaining thoughts that would involve the box NOT blowing up in his face, probably because he's japanese and has never seen the Smurfs.
Still, though, his curiosity (and attempt to disarm, mostly that one) has had the best of him! He watches in alarm as the box clatters to the ground, hoping he didn't free some kind of terrible evil spirit--
While the goggled boy's pockets can sometimes contain the key to get him out of the strangest of situations, he didn't bring anything to prepare him for /wasps/! This is February! Yes, even if it's had a long time coming!
With that realized, his first plan is to just... charge ahead anyway. While that should be endlessly entertaining to Chidori, however, Shinji proves once again why he is the one called Senpai. Read: by rescuing him from the absolute terror that is /japanese wasps/! "W-wha?!" He allows himself to be dragged back in, if a little confused as to why. Gratitude will come later!
And when Shinjiro begins to shove at Takaya, Hitoshi's eyes narrow, and seemingly without thinking, he lunges forward along with him. Arms outstretched, he tries to help Shinjiro shove the Crazy Hippie out of the door, and even goes as far as to provide cover for the man while he drags his fellow first year back in.
This probably isn't going to end so well.
"I'm not a historian or anything, but doesn't forced conversion typically go /poorly/ for everybody, usually?" drawls Akihiko, who manages to stand up from his crouch, shifting his stance in case something happens, which is almost guaranteed. He knows it, because he is blocking the woman's way out of the window and the door will force her to go through the entire dormitory where the kouhais would be waiting...
At least, he /hopes/ where the kouhais would be waiting, anyway. As much training as he does, he has yet to tap into the secrets of developing x-ray vision.
But when Natasha suddenly, moves, that's when he fully readies himself to engage. The Stregite has surprises of her own however, and when she throws something at him, he is quick to block.... at a cost. The box is batted to the side, the lid opening, and BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEES start swarming the entire room and around him. Gray eyes open wide. He did not expect that, and now, he's in trouble, because stingers hurt like bastards.
"Ow!" A hand slaps on the back of his neck, and one gets him on his cheek.... like small, flying carnivores, he's assaulted on every bit of exposed skin he has. "OW MY EYE!" ...thankfully NOT at the eyeball, having been stung in the eyelid over it, and pretty soon, he's flailing like a spastic marionette as he tries to ward the insects off him, knowing full well that if he does something, he'll either be a mountain of hives or until he's got enough toxins in his system to produce unwanted symptoms of anaphylactic shock. This is /not/ good.
Mitsuru is going to /kill/ him for this, but it has to be done. He'll get stung repeatedly but he can't let this SWARM OF BEEEEES to get out of this room.
He summons Polydeuces, calling out for his Persona, but not to attack Natasha. Instead, he erratically causes it to fire at the ceiling in hopes to trigger the room's sprinkler system and drown/chase off the insects off him. He can practically feel Mitsuru signing his execution order.
If he succeeds, he also gets a wet Natasha.
....until one remembers Akihiko has the libido of a walnut! Curse you, Strega!
Tomomi now inside the dorm, or at least a hallway, she isn't sure entirely what she would like to do. The bugs are vandalizing enough, and were the sum of her goal, but maybe there is something else nice she can do before splitting.
While thinking about this, she produces a powder-based gun, and loads it in a slow and methodical way. Then she procudes a knife, and carves her name in to the floor of the hallway in large characters.
Childish? Sure. But is it art? Undoubtedly. And isn't that what they should remember her by?
Yoshiro thinks Hitoshi is behind him. This will probably be his undoing whenever he manages to get to the site of the broken window, completely unaware as to who actually broke it.
As he draws closer there's this harsh buzzing he can't quite make heads or tails of in his haste until he actually sees it for himself. (Unfortunately for Akihiko, all he's getting in so far as backup goes right now is... Yoshiro, which is probably a worrying thin in itself).
He comes just in time to see Polydeuces being summoned and, really, a swarm of bees (Japanese wasps, more specifically), along with some woman he's sure he's never seen before. This last bit pales in comparison to the previous two.
"Sanada-senpaaai!" Yoshiro calls out more or less uselessly as a wasp lands on one of sleeves. "Aie! No! Get it off! Get it off! GET IT OFF!" He starts to flail around, further failing to help the situation very much.
"I enjoy the company of a person who can put aside their humanity for the glory of a mission," Takaya says at Hitoshi, even if he cannot see him while focused on Shinjiro. "Do you take pleasure in the suffering of others? She had been one of you for a time. Do you not care that she has fallen back into my hands? Or perhaps you believe yourself better than other people because of your Kirijo money and your adorable arm-bands."
Watching Shinjiro sweat is like watching a block of ice slowly melt. Takaya is willing to weather against him like water damage for as long as it takes. Weeks. Months. Years. Every tiny crack, every little weakness, it all adds up. Entropy always wins in the end. He will not break gaze. Because it's coming, he thinks, as the wasps start to buzz behind him. The psychic chess match has entered endgame.
Shinjiro moves forward, shoving at Takaya. Hitoshi joins in. Takaya is not particularly heavy and can be easily moved by two healthy teenagers. In fact, he allows himself to be shoved clear, aiming to crash down into the snow -- throwing the box inside the dorm past Shinjiro and Hitoshi, effectively creating another cloud of problems inside the lobby. The lid flies off the box in flight, knocked off by the small chemical heating pad Takaya dropped inside to keep all of his wasps and cockroaches in an active state.
And then the sprinklers go off inside. Takaya's eyes light up like Christmas morning. He starts laughing as he pulls himself up, aiming for a full retreat.
Rin Hayashi, against all expectations, manages to get lost in the vents.
She went a different way than Tomomi, having managed to lever herself /up/ a floor by sheer determination and using her knife like a climbing pick (complete with annoying metal-on-metal squealing noises). She opens the box with the same knife, dumping the bugs out and letting them finish 'waking up'. Rin has a lot more cockroaches and beetles and a lot less wasps than Tomomi.
And now Rin isn't sure where to go. She hears someone moving underneath her: Aigis, moving into the vents. She keeps holding herself up, trying to let Aigis go /past/ her, in the direction Tomomi went; only then does she drop back down, trying to make her escape.
Now if only it was likely to work.
"I'm a proprietor of free will, thanks," Hitoshi growls harshly as he shoves at Takaya, finally helping him to get him out the door, "so take your 'sufferin' of others' bullshit and get lo--"
Fuck. When he realize what is in the box, his eyes -widen.-
He's allergic to wasps. Badly so. In which case, he begins to swing his hands violently, to keep them off of him.
Oh my. What big teath you have.
Seiichi sloowly looks behind himself then. Oh look. A huge dog. On fire. With teath. He draws in a slow breath before looking back at Koro-chan. "I supose." he says slowly. "This means I should let you go."
He slooowly lets go of the puppy and reaches one hand for the buzzing little box at his side. "I'll just be walking away now. That alright with you two..."
He'll slowly stand and start to back away from the puppy and the BIG PUPPY.
Chidori made a tiny frustrated sound as Shiki was dragged back in. Not only was she now bereft of entertainment, but now the wasps had one target left to go for.
With as much insulted dignity as she could muster (not a lot), Chidori crouched down and scuttled forward, giving the wasps a wide berth, to reach out for Takaya, helping him up.
"I think we're done here," she murmured, pulling Takaya out of the way of the Angry Japanese Wasps. His laughter lightened her sour expression by a very very tiny bit, as Chidori surveyed the damage they had wrought. "They will remember this one."
Natasha wasn't quite expecting bees when she threw the package. She can't help but wonder what Tomomi's plan for this is in the grand scheme of things. If there is one. Which there has to be, of course. But what?
A bright smile lights up on her face as Akihiko starts flailing around. Mysteriously the bees aren't bothering Natasha. Maybe they're somehow scared of her? Or maybe they're all really well trained bees that will only attack SEES memebers! Or maybe not. Whatever the reason, she's not bee-bothered. She even starts circling Akihiko, moving back towards the broken window while he's preoccupied.
Though thanks to Akihiko's seemingly random flailing she wasn't able to read his movements, and his summoning of Polydecus catches her off guard. The sudden, apparently threatening, move almost causes her to call her shadow out instinctively. But it quickly becomes apparent that she's not his target.
She frowns as the sprinkler system kicks in. She looks displeased, as she brushes the beading water off of her sleeves. "That is a mean thing to do, it is so cold outside, after all. But I suppose SEES is not in the business of training gentlemen." She brushes a wet lock of hair aside, and eyes the window again. The others are probably getting ready to leave now. She ponders using a smoke bomb, but the sprinkler system will diffuse that far too quickly. So she settles for just throwing finesse out the window as she herself tries to leap out the window.
Well, it's time to go. Toumei isn't going to be the only one who didn't dispense his package, so he sttles for just throwing the stupid thing and hoping it breaks open. He doesn't know if it will or not, but he does turn to make his escape as quickly as possible. It's time to go, and he doesn't want to get cornered by a SEEShorde.
Toumei Minami also curses as he's stung a couple times. Thankfully, he's not allergic, just pain-averse.
Tomomi is now deciding on an exit. What looks good? Well, there is a conveniently broken window, but... she also has a gun.
So she breaks another one. There is a KABLAM
And a breaking glass sound, and then she leaps out in to the night somewhere. This may also serve as a convenient exit for anyone else who needs one and happens to have gotten in to the building, like Rin, who is still evading persuit.
She looks back to Koro-Chan, pulling out, "Koromaru. Siccer."
Cerberus vanishes as Koromaru bolts into the vents himself. You know what that means..!
THAT'S RIGHT KIDS! It's time for...!!!
*** KORO-CHAN'S HAPPY AD-VENT-URE TIME! ***
(sponsored by Teddie)
His barks echo through the vents (which probably only makes matters worse) as Aigis decides to make matters worse for Seiichi by lifting an arm up and shooting for his box, intending to puncture several holes in it now that she has a gist of what's going on.
"Yoshino, go get-- arrrghhh!" Akihiko grabs the insect that manages to sting him at the rear, and in frustration hurls it on the other side of the wall just as the sprinkler system activates (though thankfully in this room only) and starts chasing the insects off him. After all, there's a reason why the cliche is to dive in a pond when bees or wasps or whatever are chasing you. However, it seems that Natasha isn't content in making sure his face swells like a balloon by the morrow, she's also impinging on his honor with the gentleman comment!
He stares at her disbelievingly, half his face already swollen into the size of a melon. "/Gentleman/?" he utters disbelievingly. "You /threw a box of wasps/ at me!" What the hell? Bitch be triflin'!
He barely has the words out when Natasha is moving, knocked away from the window when Russiandiego leaps for it. He scrambles after her, but he could hear Yoshiro yelping somewhere behind him. Grunting under his breath, he lets her go, turning around and moving so he could help his kouhai.
Man, he would rather be studying.
Shinjiro drags Shiki and Hitoshi bodily back in the dorm and slams the door. This shuts out the majority of Chidori's terrible wasps, but does nothing to protect them from the contents of Takaya's. Shinjiro curses, very loudly and extensively; if Shiki and Hitoshi ever wanted to learn how to swear uninterrupted for no less than half a minute, now would be a great time to learn.
Trying to push the two underclassmen ahead of him, Shinjiro puts himself between them and the mad bees. This means he gets stung, of course, all over his back, across the arm he's using to shield his more vulnerable face and neck. He endures it, as best he can. "Get into the bathroom," he snaps, "or someplace they can't reach you." He does not intend anyone to die of anaphylactic shock here!! Except, apparently, maybe himself.
The Evoker comes out-- apparently, Shinjiro wears that thing at all times, and after this night, he'll feel -justified- about it. Castor comes into being, with a pulse of intense heat that verges on flame. The heat drives the wasps back, if not burning most of them to death straight off, but... Though he's trying to hold back, nonetheless he leaves a rather black scorch mark along the wall.
Shinjiro pales, eyes widening, suddenly terrified. A mental image of Mitsuru returning home and seeing the carnage rears up in his mind.
Turning tail and fleeing, on the pretext of checking on Akihiko and Yoshiro, Shinjiro arrives in time to find that Akihiko has... made as much, if not more, of a mess. Oh my God, they're both fucked.
"You have incoming!" Seiichi calls towards the vent as he starts backing up faster. The dog goes into the vent, and the Toaster comes out of the vent. The Toaster even lifts an arm to shoot at him...and Seiichi makes a quick judgement call.
The box gets tossed towards the Toaster With A Gun before Seiichi turns himself and bolts into the darkness. The box comes apart in mid-air and.......
MORE ANGRY BEEZ AND STINGING THINGS!
The remains of the box continues to fly though the air to smash against the opening of the vent as the masked man himself /dashes/.
Hitoshi's a swift learner. A few large wasps actually manage to get at him in his frantic swinging, but then... he's suddenly scooped up along with Shiki and he's thrown into the bathroom, still cursing and sounding -pissed- over the fact he's been stung by a -wasp.-
Shinjiro will come to find Yoshiro still flailing about like an idiot in an attempt to try and shake a (doused) wasp off of his sleeve, which may be the beginning and ending of a necessary description.
"Get it off get it off get it off!" Rather than do anything reasonable like RUN AWAY FROM THE ROOM FULL OF WASPS (even with the sprinkler on), he just starts doing entire laps around the room in question. He is extremely lucky that he hasn't been stung yet. He may be making up for this for the times he hits a wall or piece of furniture or what have you, stumbling about comically before picking himself up in his haste and running around ineffectually in circles /yet again/.
"Heeeeeeeelp!" He cries.
The silver-haired boy stands there as he watches his kouhai run around in ineffectual circles, looking all e_e.
Akihiko finally reaches out when Yoshiro passes him, in an attempt to snag him by the collar. "Relax, you're fine," he tells him. And with that, he'll proceed to drag him out the room, closing the door behind him....only to bump into Shinjiro when he does, who looks just as eaten by the bugs as he.
Yep. They're both screwed.
Takaya is helped along by Chidori for a few paces before getting enough of his footing to move along on his own. He nods to her as he runs off toward the waiting Escape Van, where they will all jump into the back and peel out into the night.
Well, the people in Strega who can make it there in time, anyway. Slowpokes get to walk.
"I think a valuable lesson was learned," Takaya says, in the back of the van, as he starts applying some salve to his arms. "By someone."
Rin Hayashi manages to dodge Aigis. This is a plus!
She does not manage to dodge Koromaru entirely, though she does end up looping around him. This means rather than getting trapped by him, she gets to be chased instead.
Rin drops back to the ground and immediately starts running. She is fairly certain she can run faster than a dog... but she's never had to try to run faster than a Persona dog. Unfortunately, she doesn't know about its Persona.
This will be fun.
Fortunately, Akihiko doesn't seem interesting in pursuing a wet Natasha. The boy really does need to lighten up a bit. Still, it works for Natasha, with all the others escaping now she'd hate to be the only one left in the SEES dorm. She has confidence she could escape, though that confidence is largely rooted in ignorance, but it would be far too troublesome.
Speaking of troublesome, the cold air immediately assaults her, with part of her hair starting to freeze due to the water. She refuses to appear bothered by it, though she very quickly makes a beeline (haha, bee line) to the nearest warm building she can take refuge in and dry off.
Shinjiro gets there in time to catch a glimpse of what Akihiko has DONE to the room. He turns a /stare/ on Akihiko. "Did you-- on Mitsuru's CARPET--"
He stops dead, however, when Akihiko mentions fire. Utterly speechless, he looks over his shoulder briefly in a fashion that screams guilt, before he just gets mad. Akihiko would recognize his anger as the 'yes, I fucked up, now SHUT UP' type.
"No, nothing caught on FIRE," he retorts, as he picks a wasp out of Yoshiro's hair. "Come on, we gotta do damage control before Mitsuru gets back."
"Gack!" Yoshiro nearly chokes when he is grabbed by the collar. Fortunately for Akihiko, Yoshiro is a gigantic wuss (well, a small wuss, he's small for his age). He flails for a little while longer uselessly, mistaking every cold drop of water for a possible landing by a wasp.
"Get... them... off!" Yoshiro chokes out in mid-drag, coughing every so often. Shinjiro saves him from getting a horrible sting on his scalp!
It takes him several more seconds to calm down to a state that is actually conversation-capable. Man, imagine if he got pounced by a Hunter or something. Or a Jockey. Or a... well, okay, wrong game. Ahem.
"W-Wait... when is she coming home?" He turns his head slowly towards Shinjiro, neck still feeling cut into by Akihiko grabbing his collar.
Aigis tries gunning down the beers before they get into the vent. This doesn't work too well. It seems not every roblem can be solved by bullet and if anythign can outsmart bullets, it would be the flying insect kingdom.
Koromaru in the meanwhile proves to be the most capable person on a SEES operation once again and chases after Rin a while, barking all the way. He's having a great time and does not summon Cerberus again since he's totally got this and doesn't need Cerberus backup. He'll chase for a block or two before letting Rin escape because one of those poodle girls passes by and aroooooooo~.
"Look, there were /bees/," Akihiko retorts to Shinjiro. "It was the nearest source of water I could find!" And then, the look in Shinjiro's face as he looks over his shoulder, and he does as well, inching his head slightly to the side to gauge what his friend is looking at. He, too, pales. Oh yes, yes, Mitsuru was going to kill them.
With that, he goes. Glancing over at Yoshiro, his lips press into a line. "Soon." Which means they don't have a lot of time left. "Don't worry, I'll explain everything."
Because he has no choice. He knows he's a dead man anyway.