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/tg/ - Traditional Games

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Why do you like Nechronica?

I enjoy it because it's so easy to reskin the mechanics and come up with your own setting and is built with physical modification in mind.

I also enjoy how simple the mechanics are while there also being a large collection of options thanks to the by high part count and even larger count of enemy only parts.
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I've played in a game with a crazy Necromancer before.
I've yet to play in a game with a delusional one, unless one of the 4 in the game I'm currently in is hiding it.

Have any of you had delusional Necromancers?

If so how did the GM run them, or if you were the GM, how did you run them?
>Why do you like Nechronica?
Oh man, where to start. The setting and lore serve as a springboard into absolutely unfettered madness. The scope and scale of Necromancers ensure that you can think of the most crazy things and it will somehow still make sense for the setting of Nechronica. I've seen games with people exploring everything between fairly standard zombie-apoc cities to surreal nightmare realms lost within the Ego Dimension. It lends itself naturally to tragedy and drama, but I've seen a few comedy games happen as well.

The mechanics are powerful too. A dynamic combat system that keeps everyone on their toes and things like Hinders, Supports and Madness re-rolls mean you're not entirely a slave to dice.

Finally the mechanics like fetters and memory fragments are of special notice too. The former encourage and change the role play of characters and the latter is plenty of plot ammo for the NC. All in all, good game!

The Necromancers I've seen clung to their version of reality and had absolutely no qualms about forcing their reality upon others. With beings who can pervert and warp entropy itself, there's a lot a Necromancer can do.
>surreal nightmare realms lost within the Ego Dimension.

Tell me more about this.

How was it done and how did the dolls get there?

What sorts of things did they find and how did it effect them?

What was the tone of the story in that particular game?
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My players will no doubt find and read the thread so I can't explain too much. The long and short of it is the Necromancer created a private Ego Dimension bubble that captured the Egos/Souls of all of those who died in a catastrophe and the captured souls now struggle to try and escape back to reality or the peace of final death.

Necromancers in Nechronica are much, much more than minionmancers. Their powers reach far beyond meatspace and they can inspire incredible plots and drama.

The first and best Necromancer.
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I hope we get storytime in this thread.
I should be able to compile a couple posts worth of Hombourg storytime later tonight, but tomorrow's a workday so I'm not sure exactly how much I'll get done.

In the meantime, bumpan with some OC from Violet's player and I.
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>I enjoy it because it's so easy to reskin the mechanics and come up with your own setting and is built with physical modification in mind.

This is a major part. You can just tell the ego dimension and slime mold stuff to go fuck itself and do your own thing and the system doesn't give two shits. You don't even need an actual necromancer if you want to have that aspect be like a force of nature or something.

>I also enjoy how simple the mechanics are while there also being a large collection of options thanks to the by high part count and even larger count of enemy only parts.

Because of how simple the mechanics are, it's pretty easy to come up with wild enemies and parts and what have you. You push the system pretty far before it breaks.
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Token bump.
One of the prospective PCs for the mini-campaign I'm currently running. She didn't wind up getting chosen tho.
Nicely done
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Credit for that one goes partially to one of my players. He spliced the face into a Jin Roh helmet and actually added the rest of the dome. I edited her eyes and did some misc cleanup.

This one actually got chosen and crushed a horror with her mind last session.
post moar vampmommy
I won't be swayed by seasonal trends, I still prefer my vampire ladies petite and overwhelmingly smug.
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Can you tell us how you've been portraying the ego dimention and what sorts of descriptions and methods of depiction you've been using to accomplish that?
Since your players are already aware of that I'm guessing you can do it without spoilers?

>I should be able to compile a couple posts worth of Hombourg storytime later tonight


I am having fun playing her.

Also the other two PCs are supposed to have worked together extensively in the past and they certainly act like it in combat, goddamn.
It's satisfying to see the matchup between backstory, behavior, and mechanical effect with those two.
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I've never leaned into the cannibalism aspect of the undead with a character in this game.

Have you?

It's not a real nechronica game without autocannibalism.
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>It's not a real nechronica game without autocannibalism.

Please tell us about the ways characters eatting parts of themselves have seeped into your games.
I've played a Gothic, so that's kind of a given. Half the class abilities are built around eating the enemy.
After suffering through the trashfire that is AdEva. And then trying other godawful Evangelion hacks, OREva, M&M Eva, D&D 5Eva. And despite not even really being a fan of the series, I swore that I'd file the serial numbers off Nechronica to make probably the best aproximation of a good Evangelion game.

I haven't done it yet, because I'm >nogames and horrifically lazy. But I still stand by that this is the right system for Evangelion. Maybe some weeb here will take up the torch and make that good homebrew in my stead.
Why is that .GIF so satisfying?

They are certainly fluffed that way. Though I've also seen it refluffed as warrior skill, killing intent, and auto-repair or healing factor.

A class that can be VERY shonen.

Let's see, there's Nine who was a Junk/Stacy/Psychedelic. Not really one taken to eating corpses, let alone their own body parts in most circumstances. Nine was one who did her best to protect her sisters from anything that might hurt them, whether it be emotionally or physically. During one particular fight, her pure Gothic was accumulating madness, which Nine took for her through Embrace of Souls to the point that the friendly fetter on said sister went into madness triggering Inordinate Empathy.

Now Nine was a Junk with Lame Beast who could have easily been confused with an Automaton if you didn't pay attention, which her sisters weren't. They were busy looking over the enemy the party had defeated which was a savant that the Gothic had known when she was alive. As they're doing this and seeing if they can somehow fix the savant to speak to them, Nine was standing back among the meat and metal that had been blown out of the combatants. Due to the madness and being in the gothic's head, she was hungry, a rare feeling. She kept a neutral expression and said nothing as she considered her options for food. Her sisters might want their own parts back or the parts taken out of the enemy for either repairs or the savant. That meant that the meat blasted out of her was the most sensible choice.

Now it had been stated previously that Gothics eating their own flesh was a very bad sign as far as mental stability goes. Apparently those that start doing such things rarely stop and usually don't come back from it. Luckily, Nine was not a Gothic so there was nothing wrong with her decision to calmly eat her own entrails as her sisters focused on their own task.
Can I ask what difference if any exists between this Ego Dimension and what could classically be described as a generic fantasy settings afterlife plane?
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>Now it had been stated previously that Gothics eating their own flesh was a very bad sign as far as mental stability goes. Apparently those that start doing such things rarely stop and usually don't come back from it. Luckily, Nine was not a Gothic so there was nothing wrong with her decision to calmly eat her own entrails as her sisters focused on their own task.

I love how straight-faced yet questionable this reads.
Did one based on a Hawk and Fisher story. A young incredibly powerful prodigy mage goes insane when his betrothed dies in an accident, So he animates her corpse as a zombie to always be with her, acts like she is alive and healthy and goes on insane homicidal magical rampages when anyone points out that she looks a bit pale or is starting to smell funny. It's a good problem for the players to solve if set in a large city, where magical destructive firestorms are a really bad idea.
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Requiem is a classy class.
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Nine was a very practical soul. Not bothering her sisters or inconveniencing them was a fairly high priority in her assessment of things. Also, looking at those logs again, there was a mistake made. The entrails Nine started eating were still attached to her so she spent a fairly large chunk of a session just ruminating her own entrails as people attended to important discussions and technical things that she could mostly follow. She only occasionally stopped to offer input when asked. Her sisters mostly didn't comment on it probably due to other, more important things going on. The thing that did get her to stop was when the Romanesque said they could go find other meat if she was hungry, since she didn't want to be a bother and make her sisters find more meat.
I'm undoubtedly one of the players in his game, but the quickest answer is basically, picture a typical post-apoc earth (that's what we all THOUGHT it was even, until the mid campaign plot twist about a year or two in) where the various weird factions possible in Nechronica (ever mutating flesh gods, super robot tech masters, cabals of dolls forming their own grim ramshackle dystopia) have distorted the cardinal points of the world into their own alien dwelling places, and there are places stranger still like floating upside down cities and sunken towns where proximity to the original Necromancer has made things even weirder (multi-dimensional mc-esther labyrinths, etc.)
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Pic related got put into a 999,999,999kcal deficit after one fight and basically went feral, devouring basically her bodyweight in corpse flesh until the adrenaline tapered off and she could think rationally again.
Not her proudest moment.

Ironically she's not a Gothic. She's a pure Baroque with a Court position, though I've seriously considered picking up Predator for fluff reasons.

And as implied in >>77272759 I gave Aster memories of craving human meat, though prolonged stasis seemed to distill it out of her. One of the downed comrades they found was actually a medic doll who gave Aster her own (regenerating) organs to help curb Aster's cravings.
For some reason I really like the idea of playing a Gothic that's a very cute and upbeat "team pet" type of girl, who also just happens to have an insatiable appetite for flesh and no idea why other Dolls might be unnerved by her chowing down on some zombos.
I'll sometimes casually glance at these threads, but I have a question: the classes that are based on power armor and on being part plant are both third-party, right?
They are homebrew from fans, yes. Most homebrew stuff (like always) is hit or miss but most of it is fairly well balanced.
What part of the world did you start in?
I saw a futa on f-list using op image as an avatar yesterday...
yeah, she's all over the place recently
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>tiddy monster from Popular Modern Franchise is popular
I've heard the ego dimention described as like the Warp in 40k but without the daemons around to devour souls and try to influence the living world to better suit their needs. So miserable insane souls just sort of pile up.

Though really you can do what you want with it.
>So miserable insane souls just sort of pile up.
More like
>souls just sort of pile up
Ego Dimension probably works more like the Khert from Unsounded, except without souls being scrubbed clean and recycled. Just the sum of human experience given form in an upper plane of existence where it piles on top of itself to infinity.

>I've heard the ego dimention described as like the Warp in 40k

Whoever chose that analogy needs to move beyond 40k as their sole reference for things. The ego dimension itself, and most everything else, in the core material is left as vaguely defined. Psychedelics have ESP which ties into the ego dimension but the exact nature of that is left equally vague. It ties in with the rest of game's fluff being left intentionally vague which does wonders for keeping discovery a thing as players can't already know about such and such because they read the codex or supplement that laid out its details.

Ego dimension works however it's defined in that particular campaign. You can have it be that, the warp, or the Noosphere, as a few examples. You can have it that souls exist in that plane forever, that they disappear after a year unless properly stored, that it's a temporary place and that souls reincarnate after a time, or that they merely decay at rate that involves the memories degrading until finally the core person "rots" away.
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would the decayed remains of a cult make for a good central hostile/neutral faction to focus a nechronicha campaign around?
also how would you go about making a legion with no direct attack
thinking of giving one a support/hinder maneuver with a timing of auto and an AP cost
Our DM likes to throw hinder/meatshield legions around. And yes, (post-apoc) Cults are a good good flavor of faction for nech games.
Two threads late, I come to grant your wish. If you happen to notice the point at which the writing blatantly stops being my style, well, long talking sessions are my bane. Guess what kind of session that ten was? Ultimately I had to call in my partner for an assist; this filename grows increasingly accurate. Regardless, links are provided below for those that need them, and let no further time be wasted. There's a lot to dump, after all.

http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/72655511/#p72732935 Session 1
http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/73453448/#p73480748 Session 2
http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/73453448/#p73509701 Session 3
http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/73798681/#p73848425 Session 4
http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/73798681/#p73860863 Session 5
http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/74251433/#p74289325 Session 6
http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/74251433/#p74358587 Session 7
http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/74563504/#p74653876 Session 8
http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/75560624/#p75592433 Session 9

With the conflict ended and the bugs' head severed, all is well. In driving off, the A-Team passes by first an absolute massacre of a scene, the ultimate evolved form of road rage, involving one truck and an obscene number of guerrillas. Secondly thereafter, one can see a trench of all things – judging by the tent and the bodies, it's likely this was supposed to be the second company's base of operations, before the queen hijacked that operation. No stop is made to inspect it however, it's straight back to the Russians' jeep. Arrival there is cause for their disembarking. Once they've gotten in and started it up, they pull next to a window, Vulovic calling out, “So, uh. We'll be fucking off, alright?” Huh? Not gonna stay for the victory celebrations, are they?
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“We didn't see anything of you two, if that's what you want,” Altina accepts their departure with. Their presence has already catalyzed one argument, in retrospect. Simplest if they don't stay on rightful Chinese clay.

Not that Adrian sees it this way. “You sure you don't want to stick around for a bit?” she queries, a little keen on the idea.

“Not really,” Buinov answers quickly, with fair explanation as to why. “We have a home, y'know?” And they'd much like to return to it.

Especially given Vulovic reports, “We did our job, already.” Deserters executed, bugs that made off with them leaderless – does seem to be a mission well accomplished on their end too.

All the same the muscle tries. “I mean, we're probably going to be leaving soon anyway. This place is gonna be too dull for me.” Ah, peace; truly, poisonous to the mind as naught else can be.

“... Well.” Vulovic's moment of thought doesn't consider staying, but something else instead. “If you're in a tight spot around Anatolia or Astana and it involves our kind, you can try mentioning my name. It might get you somewhere.” She scratches her head with the final admission of, “Not much else we can do for you.”

“Going up that way doesn't sound like a bad idea.” So does the muscle hint what it is they might do.

And Altina agrees, “We've solved problems here, anyway. I don't see any trouble in a road trip.” It will not, however, be a road trip in a Russian jeep; they're not primarily drivers and can't be strong-armed into providing rides.

“Anyway.” With this, Vulovic offers her farewell, a swipe of her hand bidding the A-Team goodbye.

“Bye-bye,” Buinov adds in tandem, as their jeep pulls away. Just a little ruefully, Adrian waves them off; there goes the idea of riding with them to Anatolia.
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Much more vigorously, Aida also gives them a final wave. Not that they see it, what with her inhabiting the back of the truck. At least they can hear her sage advice of, “Don't become bad Russians!” It would be truly unfortunate to have to fight them after everything.

Rather than feeling choked up as they depart, the trucker opts instead to feel relieved. “... Well, that's one less faction to worry about.” She should make a wish on the next shooting star, try and get things to stay that way if she's so concerned. “... Are you going straight to the bar?” she wonders instead, irrespective of the time, for there is no stopping the booze train.

It can, however, be slowed by the bomb. “Don't we need chickens first to celebrate?” she yells from the back, to remind everyone of this most important fact.

“Mm. Maybe?” Altina's response is neither the most convincing nor enthused, as she explains, “I don't really... Party etiquette is beyond me. I'm sorry.” Yet things are much simpler than that, bird.

“I guess chickens could work...” Adrian agrees with a noncommittal shrug, showing how easy the answer is, even if that's also not exactly high energy. Eh. Lola's fine with the destination anyway, so the wheels spin. The path to Kuku's involves a trip through downtown, which is now a much more quiet place. Blazes have petered out, the smoke no longer thick enough to dominate the horizon. Intermittently, small groups of girls are passed, going about post-chaos business. And if one wishes to see bug carcasses, they merely need look out the windshield, plenty littering the road – the endless stream of crunches is drowned out by the engine, however. In this manner passes the trip to the farm, which bustles at this point, a crowd having gathered at the place. The guerrillas from before are also present, hacked to bits and neatly arranged. “Looks like she's busy,” Adrian figures as the truck pulls up.
>Two threads late, I come to grant your wish.

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Lola finds herself more preoccupied with the macabre display of body parts. “Well, shit. Guess Kuku really does treat everything like work.” And if those guerrillas have been subject to a butcher's work, one thing may hold true.

Aida latches onto this possibility, stepping out to muse, “I wonder if we can eat those too?” She goes over to poke the pieces inquisitively, seeing only potential food on display, not the vestiges of some manner of unlife. While she does that, Adrian gets out, carrying Altina with her and leaving the body.

“... You're just leaving her here? Who is this anyway?” Lola's queries for the muscle go unanswered, for she's intent upon going to find Kuku. “... Whew,” the trucker sighs, watching that single-minded determination.

As attention turns to the truck and its occupants, Adrian's search is cut short when she's tackled – for the purposes of a hug, Kuku having found the muscle first. The first to express confusion is one among the crowd, Colonel asking, “... What's that all about?” as she looks at the butcher.

Adrian's response is less confused and more alert, and she's already got a fist raised, only lowering it when she realizes there's no enemies here. “Hey Kuku,what's the matter?” she asks the girl, getting no answer yet.

“Did something happen, Kuku?” the bomb adds, pulled away from wondering which part of the human body she wants to consume by this.

Kuku finally speaks up then, but doesn't quite answer either of them. “You came back to ush!” she cries, sounding so terribly relieved in spite of the relatively short time spent apart. “I don't believe it! It wash you all along! Why did you go away?”

Those followups are enlightening, at least to one person present. “... I think I know what's going on,” Rita claims, eyeing Adrian more than she does the butcher. The muscle is a bit busy to notice, reassuringly patting Kuku on the head and stumbling over her words trying to figure out how to respond to this.
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Colonel, in her infinite genius, knows the perfect means by which she can defuse the situation: completely sidestep Kuku's little moment like an idiot. “So, how did it go? Find anything?” she asks the A-Team.

That, at least, Adrian can answer, as opposed to the chickenmancer's emotional outburst, so she focuses on the bimbo instead. “We took care of the one behind it, it was the mayor,” she reports, of a job well done.

“We had to go get the bug-talkers,” Aida answers Kuku instead while those two ignore her, reminding her why the party left and lost as to why this is such a big deal. “Didn't we say we were getting the bug talkers?” she asks, now doubting her own memory a little.

“I guesh sho,” the butcher says, releasing Adrian with a sniffle to turn to Aida. Yet she sounds not sorrowful, but instead jubilant to declare, “But the necromansher came back to ush! It wash Adrian all along!” Well, that's a bomb to drop on par with Aida.

Adrian, in the middle of correcting, “Or mayoress, I gu-” is absolutely not going to be finishing that statement with this floating in the air.

“... Excuse me?” Colonel asks, rapidly swapping between both muscle and Kuku in several kinds of disbelief. “Well, both of you, really. The mayoress? The necromancer?” Puzzled doesn't begin to describe her tone. Adrian, too, is very much lost, certainly wanting for an answer to give.

Aida dodges confusion by jumping straight to denial. “Adrian's not the necromancer,” she tells Kuku, assuring her, “That'd be silly. She's Adrian.”

Similarly, the bartender avoids confusion, as she surmises perfectly, “Oh, did you find Carmila then?” The situation seems only to make sense to her. All the while, Adrian performs a stellar impersonation of a confused individual, using her immense confusion.
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“And Mariana was behind it somehow?” the radio host adds, trying to piece together approximately half a puzzle. In pursuit of the other half she adds, “I think it's about time you start spilling.” An excellent suggestion; Altina will oblige her.

“We killed them all,” the bird informs her quite simply, for there's little more to it. Excepting the rather interesting facet that they all had to be killed, “Mostly because they were all this one giant monster. So that was less than fortunate.”

Latching more onto nagging dread than this added fact, Colonel asks, “... Where did this take place?” Adrian, needing some out from her utter befuddlement, is quick to jump at this.

“Out in the dunes outside of town. Your lieutenant was workin' with'em.” … Oh. Oh, indeed. What more can one add to this?

“And the girl that was bad at making music!” Ah, yes, the bomb could also add that; it's pertinent enough information.

Having recovered from her emotional outburst, Kuku claims, “Oh, I remember her.” Which is good, as she was last discussed approximately one day ago.

“They're paste now,” Adrian more helpfully supplies, to keep things on track. It isn't exactly making the cowgirl's day much better.

With distant tinges of hope overshadowed by trepidation, the bimbo asks, “Well, if Trish was in on this entire... Ordeal, as it is... What about the rest of the second company?”

“They were enemies,” comes Adrian's straightforward assessment of their lamentable state.

Finding that just a little lacking, Aida would like to add, “All buggy! But we didn't blow most of them up.” Heartening news, surely, to hear that a number of them survived.

Or so one would hope, but an ample dose of stress resides within Colonel's, “Great. Just what I needed.”

“But hey, the bugs exploded,” Adrian informs her, as an attempt at offering a more optimistic outlook on the situation.
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Valiant, yet fruitless. “Well, if your account is correct I just lost half of our armed forces. Not to mention the substantial losses we had in the southern edge of town.” How will the productivity of her term recover from this?

“I don't think the Chinese are going to like that very much,” the bartender muses of this unfortunate situation; if only there were some solution.

And in fact, the muscle believes she has one. “Well, maybe the ones who were still intact when the bugs exploded can be saved?” she suggests with a shrug, not seeing any better ways to salvage a rather tough break – but it's enough.

“Right. I'll send what's left of our people over.” Thus is reached a resolution to do something productive rather than mope. May it preserve Colonel's position.

That settled, something dawns upon Adrian, considering those gathered were, last she checked, somewhat disparate. “Why are you all here anyway?” she wonders, having expected only to stop off and acquire a feast.

“No reason in particular,” Rita responds, coy as she tries to pretend there's no great meaning to any of this.

“At least you're safe,” Adrian settles upon as a response, reading nothing into this in her infinite blindness.

“... Weren't you the one who told us to come?” Carla further inquires in her stead, casting a querying gaze upon the evasive bartender.

Drawn out by this, Rita resolves to, perhaps, nudge things in the direction she knows they need to go. So prompted, she admits, “I had a feeling you'd swing by, so I took the opportunity to have the Colonel lose her Chinese friends so we could have a talk. But, like Kuku said, you showed up with something a little concerning...” All the better, perhaps, that Chinese ears aren't here to pry.

Having less than no idea what the bartender is going on about, Adrian can only ask, “What? We saved the day or something, didn't we?” And, true enough, 'twas the party who slew the incident's inciter.
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“Everything is done,” the bird asserts as well, seeing no final hurdles to clear. “We won, they lost, no more bugs to bother people – everything is as fine as can be.”

The bomb as well sees only victory before the A-Team, contributing her own, “Yeah, we blew up the big bug talker! So now we're gonna get chickens and celebrate.” Lighting the fuse of her mind, this reminds Aida that she promised Kuku a date when next chickens were acquired – so she slips her hand into the butcher's, as one does upon a date.

“Yay.” With this the chickenmancer settles into the grip, much pleased compared to her rather emotional outburst. “The necromansher came back and I get a date all in the same day. Amazing!” There's that claim again. Would Adrian like to say anything more on the matter?

“I just want to go back to drinking, which is what I wanted to do before all this bullshit started.” No, instead she would like sung a lament for all the alcohol not imbibed, for all the shots not slammed back.

She'll get nothing of the sort from Rita, who takes the stern tone only a mother can manage, getting the muscle's attention thus with, “Adrian. Honey.” When she has that assurance the girl is listening, the bartender asks, gravely, “... What did you do?”

“Beat the bad guys and had a snack.” For such a simple admission, it makes everyone's favorite radio host rather nervous.

Prodding further, Rita asks a none too pointed, “... What kind of snack? The flammable kind?”

“It was a little spicy...” Adrian admits, with but the mere suggestion of reticence.

“... We can tell,” the bartender informs her, tapping a few fingers together. “... So, uh. What are you going to do with all this spice?” The query meets only with another of the muscle's shrugs, the most noncommittal possible response. “If that's your answer, you might want to give it up,” Rita advises, quite hoping the advice is taken.
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Still lost as everything remains veiled behind metaphor, Colonel bimbo reminds everyone, “I don't understand any of this.”

She'll get nothing from Carla, whose own comprehension is summed, “I think I may have some understanding, but I'm not absolutely positive.”

It's the bartender who needs to provide a succinct summation, her statement chosen for this, “The power Mariana and her family inherited is all here, in her belly. Basically.”

“Adrian ate them right before they set on fire. So. That's about right.” Among Altina's infinite uses is the ability to corroborate such simple facts.

Within Kuku's mind, such facts twist to concerning ends. “What? You ate the necromansher?” She looks to the muscle and sniffles, betrayed by this deplorable act.

“It wasn't the necromancer,” Adrian stresses quickly, before that can go anywhere.

Likewise Aida provides, “No, she ate the bug talker.” Yet still there is more to explain.

Added last by Rita is a placating, “Well, not really. It's just a really large portion of the necomancer's power. That she never thought would go to making bugs and waging war on their own people.” The awfully knowledgeable bartender sighs, giving a deeply disappointed, “... Honestly, Mariana.”

“She was pretty crazy,” Adrian has to say of the A-Team's latest foe, as there's little else to remark upon.

“The mayoress was, uh, eccentric, for sure,” Colonel admits, not of a mind to fight the muscle on the matter.

Altina finds this an excellent time to volunteer, “I blew her skull to bits. She deserved it.” She's considerably less imposing than Adrian; will anyone deny her that?

Given Rita's the first to respond and her choice is, “I don't doubt you,” it would seem not. Thereafter, the bartender swings her gaze back to Adrian, to ask her a very serious question. “So, would you give that power back?”
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“Back to who?” the one so queried asks in turn, displaying the awesome acuity her mind possesses. While there comes a noncommittal stammer, Rita rendered looking as nervous as Carla, technically this is no answer.

By now even Colonel can be seen to connect the dots, looking to the humble bartender who'll confirm naught with a scarcely believing, “... Wait a minute, does this mean?”

“Um, m-maybe?” Rita responds, continuing to try and weasel out of things even now. The muscle, unappreciative of this, fixes her with an intense glare, which earns her a high, weak, “... Sorry?” Her face doesn't quite know what expression it wants to make at this point.

Nor does Carla's, as she comes up and rests a hand on the bartender's shoulder. Gingerly she speaks, “Look... It's hard to explain.” However true this is, Adrian bears another truth that works to counter the statement.

“I'd like to think considering how we don't really get paid shit around here, an explanation wouldn't be out of the question.” To this there can be and is no refutation. Nonetheless, forthcoming are answers not.

The bomb has sufficient time to glance between the complicated expressions the African pair wear, flitting from bartender to radio host as she wonders, “Yeah, why's everyone's faces all weird?” It affords them both a bit of a pause to comport themselves and finally lay bare the details. Nearly.

“Y'see...” Rita starts, then stops, giving herself another few seconds before she'll continue. “A long time ago, we were taking hell from all sides. The other African necromancers, the Chinese and the Europeans that were crossing over the middle east just to give us the middle finger.” Leading thus, she admits at last to her nature as necromancer, amid past misfortunes.
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Carla then chooses to cut in, aiding by adding her own share, “So... Taking into account that we were a bit, um, weak as it were, compared to the other necromancers and we got an offer from one of the Chinese necromancers...” Then does the now-unveiled other half of the necromantic duo trail, leaving in the air the ultimate resolution.

“... We resigned,” Rita supplies with a heave, Colonel glancing between her and Carla, conflicted over this unveiling of where and who her necromancers were.

This all before her to consider, Adrian arrives at a simple question, a fair inquiry of power fraught with problems. “Is this really something you want back?”

“... I don't know,” the bartender admits, unclear on whether she truly desires this onerous mantle. All the same, as things sit she reasons, “But we might need it.” The past's unveiling proceeds with this, an account of misjudgment. “We split our power among our best dolls and let the Chinese take over, as we were sure they'd make good on their promise not to slaughter everyone.”

The radio host, for her part, reminds Rita, “Well, it was that or get destroyed in the war. Not much choice, if you ask me.” Bound as they may have been, there is a concession made, obvious though it may be. “And they did keep their end of the promise, in the end.” But one rub can be found in this accord's resolution, in spite of this. A frank, “Even if we didn't.”

What duties were shirked in this agreement by the Africans is left to illumination by the bartender, who adds, “Yes, since they wanted us gone for good. As in, dead.” Doubtless, that poses no shortage of risks associated with a resurgence.

One such issue is pointed out readily by the muscle, hitting upon something seemingly obvious from her perspective. “Don't you think getting that power back might make you more noticeable?”
“It certainly may.” Saying this, Rita's voice wavers not, wholly resolute. “But after going through two bug infestations and purges I think it's about time we step up and take responsibility. We'll try and strike a deal with the emperor if need be. Unless you'd like to do it yourself.”

“Do you really think the emperor will be that forgiving?” Adrian sidesteps the idea of such responsibility, choosing instead to question the act itself with skepticism and a leery look.

Unconvincingly, she suggests in retort, “... Well, it's been a couple of years. Maybe he changed?” Where perhaps such idealism may not pan out, she can more confidently assert, “And if he hasn't, I can always try the Russians. They weren't an option back then.” Buinov and Vulovic do certainly point toward that possibility.

“... This is a bit too much for me to process,” Colonel comments, giving up as the talk of necromantic true identities segues with nigh immediacy to political ramifications and alliances.

The long-silent butcher finally is torn from silent contemplation, fitting together the difficult pieces of the puzzle that have been perplexing her. “... Wait, doesh thish mean Rita ish the necromansher?”

“More or less,” said necromancer answers her, in a fashion unnecessarily roundabout, the secret all but stated plainly prior. Such utterances provide pause, during which Adrian may ponder what next to say.

Its conclusion, then, spawns a swift, “Seems to me, if I give it to you, I'm just tossing a coin to see if you die.” An unacceptable risk after expending so much effort in defense of these African hovels and their inhabitants.

“And it sounds like war stuff,” Aida chimes in, discontentment evident easily in her voice. “Why do you wanna do war stuff?” Surely, such an endeavor would be foolishness. Even Colonel can see so.
Though her statement on the matter is, instead, of the dreaded coin flip, her opinion a straightforward, “I agree with Adrian. After our losses here, I don't think we can resist anything they throw our way.” This claim is in all likelihood true; moreover, it remains so without the opening qualifier, for of their thousand-strong second company, one may say that four dolls on a truck were nigh-invincible opposition, carving a swathe of slaughter without fear of retribution. China's armies would have to be minuscule indeed to muster only this much if roused to action.

The bartender lets out a noise at once confounded and defeated, knowing there's no convincing the muscle of her safety should that power be returned. But what of Adrian's safety? Rita has this to say of it. “Problem is, honey, we can't let you hold onto that much power either.”

“And why's that?” Adrian queries slowly, in search of aught able to convince her she should return this conundrum causing bounty.

“Well. Didn't you say Mariana was joined with Camila? I take it all five of them were joined somehow.” Yep. That's a fine supposition by Rita. “The amount of power we left for everyone should be safe,” the bartender further explains, once she has her confirmation. “But I'm guessing Mariana had the brilliant idea to absorb her sisters to try and overthrow the Chinese. And she went mad.” Basically. Her guesses continue to pan out without the need for firsthand experience, and so she continues to educate. “As dolls do when they have this much power. This much power can only be acquired through experience and training. If you just pour it into someone who doesn't know how to use it, it'll just drive them insane, basically. Which is why, right now, you are a ticking time bomb.” Of this final statement most grave, there can be many takeaways.
The bomb's is a distinctly literal, “Adrian's a bomb too? Is she gonna start blowing up?” as she looks up, towards her much larger partner in cannibalism, wondering if they may soon be comrades of another variety.

Others may well choose to contribute, “I do not want Adrian to explode.” And not merely because, as an avian in the muscle's possession, they would be at ground zero of any such detonation. Likely, however, it does occupy some portion of Altina's statement.

Yet still, another contingent may ignore it entirely, focusing on honest assurances such as, “I like training.” For claiming as such, Adrian finds herself the victim of Coach's biting, “Then why haven't you done any?” The best rebuttal the muscle can muster is a snapped, “Shut up.” Thus ends that short discourse, victor clear.

Rather than amuse herself with Adrian's verbal demise, Carla asks after that claim and its potential meanings. “... So, you're interested in taking up the mantle?” The reply is one of little surprise.

“Man, I don't know. I was just hungry and did what I do after every fight, now I'm on fire and all this shit.” To even ponder the idea proposes a scope of responsibility far beyond drinking during the night and fighting during the day. What is the muscle to even say of such a massive disruption to her perfect lifestyle?

“I understand your confusion,” Rita tells Adrian, empathy in her voice and a smile on her face. “Which is why I'd rather take this burden out of your hands.” Altruistic as the prevention of such an upheaval of lifestyle may be, it falls to one crack in its armor, the salient point covered prior.

“And possibly put your head on the chopping block.” The idea itself is one the muscle shall not conscience, let alone the reality.

Slightly exasperated comes Rita's reply of, “I think you may be exaggerating a bit.” It's unconvincing to Adrian, who wants better. She's given better, a perfect solution.
“Give it to me, then. I'm already on the chopping block.” Suggesting this is the beloved blonde bimbo, revealing that solution to be much less than perfect, in actuality.

Instanced, instantly, by the radio host's riposte of, “That doesn't really solve anything, y'know.” Colonel can only sulk in dejection as her plan is shot down.

“Why can't Adrian just keep it?” Aida asks, befuddled beyond belief that there is a problem here. “If she's just gonna blow up that all grows back anyway.” Further elaboration shows that Rita has picked a poor metaphor to describe the encroaching problem, as the actual bomb argues something no one else is debating.

The true conversation carries on, such misconceptions not enough to stall it, the muscle putting forth yet further evidence she should keep what she's found. “We were gonna leave here soon anyway.”

“So you're intent on leaving us behind with all our power?” Rita asks, less than keen upon the idea, not so much angry as hurt. And indeed, what would befall this poor African town, should a third plague of insects come following the A-Team's departure? 'Twould spell their demise without question, absent outside intervention.

Adrian's perspective on the matter differs though, the enlightening look into her thought process stated simply. “If the evidence of the shit you did is gone with us, they can't really find out, can they?” Truth hides behind her words, for China's eye would not likely follow the group. Refutations, however, require less even than reiteration.

“That's not the issue here. Did you not listen to what I just said?” The bartender's said a number of things, the most prominent of which some people did listen to. Such as Aida.
Displaying her mastery of Rita's words, she responds, “You said she's gonna blow up. But blowing up isn't so bad, I do it all the time.” In the discussion she thinks she's having, it's irrefutable, considering Adrian is quite adept at the art of regeneration. A pity this isn't that conversation.

That leaves the muscle to defend herself instead, doing so by a nonchalant, “I just gotta train and shit right?” How effortlessly these problems resolve themselves, or, rather, try to.

For first out of the bartender's mouth is, “With this amount?” A question bearing within itself a disbelieving dash of incredulity. A scrutinizing stare directs itself to Adrian to accompany these words, before Rita's features and her voice soften to inform, “... Might not be that simple. This power is going to put you in trouble as well, especially out there with the dolls that are actually dangerous.” Touching that she does care. Why not engage her elsewhere?

“You think I got this by being lazy about training,” the muscle inquires with her own pinch of disbelief, pointing here at her midsection, where behind clothes hide abs that serve as proof of genuine effort.

Rita's alternative thought as to whence the girl's physique originates does provide leeway in how it might have come about, one absent hard work, or much in the way of higher thought. An upfront, “I think your necromancer had a thing for muscles.” Lacking presence here, Adrian's necromancer can neither confirm nor deny such preferences. Neither can the muscle, but she can provide the next best thing.

“Nah, one thing I remember is doing it all my life.” Memory evidence is enough to exonerate her of the crime of laziness.
Likewise, it spurs Rita to recant with a, “Huh, nevermind then.” So convinced that Adrian will train, that finally resolves everything, leading to- “Anyway. I'm not talking about -physical- training, y'know.” No such luck, then; let the battle of viewpoints rage on, with all the staying power of undeath, lead still by the bartender. “And this isn't really stuff you can just develop by yourself these days. Not without some good books.”

“All training's somewhat mental anyway,” Adrian is in the middle of claiming, before it dawns on her what Rita next said. “What, do you actually have books about this?” she asks after, seeing the solution.

Which such books might be, were circumstances different. But as Rita must confess, “We -did-, that's the problem.”

“What, did you burn'em or something?” One could hardly blame them, if they removed hints of necromancy to appease the Chinese. But no, instead, as the muscle queries, the bartender's gaze twists upon Colonel.

With a nervous pause and a stalling, “Uh,” the bimbo sweats for a second, before bursting into a shout of, “... HOW WOULD I KNOW? HOW -COULD- I KNOW?”

“By looking before burning.” This advice of the Adrian's comes alongside a damning glare.

“Fantastic. Truly.” The bird in her arms joins in, pelting with sarcastic vilification under which Colonel crumbles.

Trying weakly to justify her burn first, ask questions never procedures, expedient in the worst way, the bimbo mutters, “... But... There were... Bugs...” It affords her neither reassurance nor solidarity, leaving her to stew in how her term may not be as productive as she cared to brag.

“But you did it before right?” the muscle asks of Rita, once she's had her fill of disdain. “Just write that shit down.” An altogether reasonable proposition, to pen the texts once more.
Yet it doesn't inspire confidence in Rita, who wishes to know, “... What are you up to, Adrian?” as she squints at the girl trying very hard to keep this necrojuice. “This is becoming increasingly suspicious. Surely you have something in mind for this power. You can't just be worried about us.” Can she not? Is this a certainty?

For the muscle's reply is a reasonably earnest, “I don't wanna chance you getting hurt.” If nothing else, its seemingly genuine nature abates the suspicion aroused.

“Look,” the bartender sighs for a start, “We survived this long not -only- because we split our power, but also due to other factors.” She beseeches, once more, that Adrian accept giving her this power is not the equivalent of readying the executioner's axe.

With a conversational parry, Adrian's response is instead an attack upon communism. “If it makes you feel any better, it's payment for services rendered.”

“... It really doesn't,” Rita lets her know, to little more than another of the muscle's shrugs. It is then she seems to run out of steam, done in by the stalled nature of this discourse. “... Will you at least try and take care of yourself?” she wishes, extending one of her hands for a shake.

'Tis then time for Adrian to view what should be a kindly gesture with some suspicion, as she glances at the proffered hand. “This is some kinda trick, isn't it?”

“Like what?” the bartender asks, looking between her hand and the one to whom it's offered a few times, questioning through these glances what she could possibly do.

“I don't know,” the muscle admits, her best guess beyond that, “like some kinda power sucking thing. I mean, we ain't leaving yet.”

Backing her up, Altina declares, “There's still a victory party to hold. It will be nice.” She'll likely spend a majority of it cradled in Adrian's arms, like now.
That interjection being of lesser importance, Rita keeps her eyes on the muscle. “... If it were this simple, you'd think Mariana would have done it instead of joining together with her sisters, don't you agree?” Sound though this logic is, one may overturn it.

“She was also crazy,” as Adrian reminds the bartender, sufficing in the job of doing so.

“... Fair,” Rita concedes after a short pause, not able to deny this fact. “There's a plausible explanation for why she did it, though.” What, pray tell, is this explanation that explains her otherwise mad actions?

Absent, that's what, for the muscle is steamrolling along. “Also you've been acting like you have some special ability that she didn't have.” Pointing this out leaves the bartender pondering a moment.

“... Well.” Waving a hand in Adrian's direction, she asks her to, “Look at your flame.” Bringing that hand towards herself again, she follows up, “Now back to mine. Not very impressive compared to yours.”

Of this observational asking, the muscle has to offer a cocky quip. “I've always been hot.” Her avian girlfriend offers agreement, while Rita's brought to smirk.

“... Truth is,” the bartender states as the little smile fades, “I was going to use this hand to do some therapy on you.” She looks again to the hand, still extended, not as yet grasped.

Nor still is it, as Adrian wonders with some slight offense, “You saying I'm crazy now?” Who, possibly, could say that? To her face. She might tear their arm off for it.

“I'm saying the flame is probably getting to your head already,” Rita clarifies, keeping things nice and civil. “So I want to clear up your mind a bit. Usually, talking with your friends does the trick, but you seem a bit off right now.”
Adrian stares at the hand moments more, shaking her head and assuring, “I'm not crazy, but if it'll make you feel better...” Hands meet and clasp, no sooner doing so than sparks fly from between them. Concurrently, Adrian is knocked unconscious, slumping forward onto the ground and atop Altina.

“Whew!” Having performed a not inconsiderable amount of conversational maneuvering to manage this, the bartender breathes a hefty sigh of relief. “Who wants to help me hold her while I extract the evil from its roots?” she asks all present, to capitalize quickly on whatever opening she's crafted. What her fellow Africans may think is of less import than what Adrian's sisters do.

The bomb, she sits there in puzzlement, staring at Rita and emitting interrogative punctuation above her cranium; not exactly a vote in favor, or period. Altina takes it upon herself to, much more violently, unleash her lightsaber arm, waving it around and warding anyone from trying as she shouts, “I disagree with this plan!”

“And I went through all the effort to knock her out.” Rita's shoulders slump in defeat, watching the bird menace everyone's shins like she is. “... Please, I just want some consent on your part,” the bartender pleads. “I don't want Adrian walking around with all that necromantic power in her belly. It's just going to drive her insane like Mariana. I mean, if she had a small amount like us... That'd be okay. But she has way too much.” This impassioned request is the best which she can offer, and its reply comes without delay.
“You'll have to do to me what you did to her before I give up!” One may witness, within the eyes of Altina, neurons reconnecting and firing, to better ponder the prone position from which she flails her energy blade. “Please do not do the same to me,” she requests, once she's actually engaged in more thought than a knee-jerk reaction takes. “I will be upset with you,” the bartender is informed, as further deterrence besides the threat of lost hands.

Try though Aida's neurons might, they fail utterly to connect enough dots to make sense of the situation. She's bereft wholly of a clue as to what's going on. She merely trusts the bird's reaction to be right as she absently agrees, “Uh... yeah! What she said!”

Seeing such stalwart defiance, Rita's emotions rapidly shift with her leading, “But guuuuuuuuuuuys,” straight into a petulance that doesn't match her appearance as she insists, “I really like you... I don't want that sort of thing in Adrian.”

“I am very confused,” Colonel comments amid this Mexican standoff. “You can knock people out with your hand?”

Once again comes the noncommittal statement, “More or less,” delivered this time by Carla. “It's not as useful as it looks,” she assures the bimbo.

Calming herself from her little outburst, Rita takes a breath and adds, “... I didn't just knock her out for no reason, duh. Like I said, it's therapy. That jolt should have cleared her mind up a bit.” At least she's not a liar, if that's the case. Let the record reflect her lack of guilt.
Likewise let it be known that the bird's reply to the bartender's prior plea is, “I like you too,” in defense of her character, “but I don't much care for this idea you have. Besides, didn't your crazed mayoress lose her mind -before- she merged with all her sisters?” From beneath her girlfriend, Altina huffs and claims, “-My- Adrian would never fall to madness so easily.” By the way, bird, quick question – are your ears feeling well? Any tinnitus? Adrian does have a habit of shouting often and loudly when fights break out – but let's not ascribe more to that than face value, I suppose?

Continuing her present function as an echo chamber, Aida declares, “Yeah! We're super strong. The talkiest bug talker said so, 'cause we're European.” That still isn't middle-eastern, but it applies to the muscle in question, so the thought does count.

Having made no headway and earned no leeway, Rita takes a seat before the pair standing in the way of her help. “Oh boy, you're being serious,” the radio host remarks as the continuing conversation moves closer to eye levels.

“Look, we sort of -need- this power to be here,” the bartender stresses, tone impressing precisely how true this is. “... Unless you wanna stay with us. But I can't let you leave with this. I -won't- let you leave with this.” Lovely as it might be that she would trust Adrian to wield the necromantic power that was once hers on her behalf, the reality is simply that the muscle would go stir crazy within the week. This week, the one that hasn't even passed since arriving.

“Oh, -this- is a fine thank you after we go and kill the bitch making everything terrible,” Altina says of this attempt to hold the A-Team here, voice suffuse with shards of sarcasm.
Hands tugging slightly at her hair, Rita eventually cries, “... I know! I know! I'm sorry, okay? We just never were very good necromancers to begin with. Which is why we were in this entire situation with the mayoress. We handed her power just because we liked her. We didn't really think into looking for qualified people.” Heartfelt as her admissions of guilt and incompetence may be, they do not rest well with everyone.

Mostly, they sit poorly with Colonel, who takes a modicum of offense at what they have to say of her. Seeing this, Carla stares in silent disbelief before reminding the bimbo, “... That still means we like you, y'know.” Simple as she is, that's enough to stem any negative feelings Colonel may have been developing.

Parallel with such tomfoolery, Aida makes the best summation she's able to of what's even being proposed here, that being, “But if you get the weird burny stuff back you're gonna have to do war stuff with the Chinese people, aren't you? That doesn't sound fun.” There are faults found within, waiting to be exposed.

Rita does so with the simple truth of the matter. “We won't go to war. Even if we wanted to, we can't.” … It doesn't truly attack the spirit of the statement though, which is that China presumably wouldn't be happy.
At no point during this has the bird's sword-arm regained its hand, blade of blue still humming out her wrist. “... I am in a damned difficult position to actually fend you off, you know,” Altina confesses from her sorry position on the ground. Her untransformed hand tries to remove the muscle, but all her shoving accomplishes is nothing. She irritably wiggles a leg that's partially free, which doesn't really budge her much. “I can't really cut you properly without doing unfortunate things to -her-.” The wild flailing has at least stopped, since the bartender sat down, and Altina adds a reticent, “... Not that I plan on cutting you unless you try something. Still.” That does leave all parties situated squarely in the impasse this interaction has long since become.

Irrespective of the immediacy with which the bird dropped into waving her saber around as a general menacing device, Rita looks saddened by the confirmation that Altina would actively seek to cut her. “Would you really go that far?” It's a hurt sort of question, by all rights rhetorical; it still receives an answer.

“You could get new hands! It isn't exactly difficult to find some,” the bird offers as a means of softening the blow, lest this cutting be misconstrued. She hardly wishes to do more than can be easily repaired.

“Adrian said no! And Altina said no! And no means no!” Lost as she may be, the bomb may state these simple facts with finality, backing Altina's position once more, proving that this is, in the end, a united front.

From this is garnered a sigh, lengthy, the kind that admits defeat. “Guess we suck both at being a necromancer and at being friends,” the bartender speaks with absolute resignation, letting this just sink in. “... Well. I tried to be reasonable. Guess there's no other option.” Dread may at these words spread, for their many potential followups, a snap coming shortly... but Rita simply asks, “Feeling better?” as Adrian begins to rise.
Groaning as she goes from laying to sitting, the muscle seems out of it momentarily. As soon as the grogginess of waking passes however, she's right to glaring at the bartender. “I thought you said that wasn't a trick,” she demands of the woman.

“Hey. I did treat you,” Rita defends herself with, saintly in nature and intent. “If you dropped like that, it just means you had a big buildup of madness. But you should be alright now.” Give it a fight or two, Rita. She'll be back there in no time.

Of course, whether she is there or not, Adrian skeptically breathes, “Why do I get the feeling you're making that part up.”

“What part?” Rita can only ask in light of this lack of trust. “I'm telling you, I treated you.” On this she is adamant, giving no ground.

“The part about me dropping,” Adrian stresses, not caring much whether the collapse cured her mind or not.

“... Well, you dropped, didn't you?” Rita states simply, expecting that established context may resolve the troubles her maneuver has conjured.

Were that only the case. The muscle wasn't convinced at first, and she remains so at the idea's repetition. “If you weren't planning something, you woulda told me about that,” she reasons of the unknown side effect.

“I can't really see how much you have just by looking at you,” Rita informs the madwoman, who was most assuredly full of the stuff. “... Unless you start ranting and raving like a lunatic, then it's obvious.” Rita, would you like to watch Adrian have a fight real quick? You'll get your answers with excellent expedience.

Instead, she gets another rebuttal for her trouble. “Still could have used a warning.” To establish an important point, then Adrian turns to the bird, who is, in spite of everything, still holding onto her muscle so that they don't have to separate – at least her lightsaber's been retracted. “Was she gonna try something while I was out?”
Beating Altina out, the bartender admits, “I was. But only if they let me. Which is why I didn't.” Such integrity is surely grounds for absolution.

“Because they would have taken your arms off,” the muscle asserts, tone more absolute than absolving.

“Wow, why the hostility?” Rita wonders, having been perfectly conscientious. “I just took the opportunity to ask them without you chiming in.” Yet the opportunity itself is a crime, you see, Rita.

Finally, the bird finds a moment where she might interject and confirm, “She wanted to take all that power you'd gotten. I didn't agree with her doing what she did in the first place.” It accomplishes little, as it's lost among the unending back and forth, spurred wholly by Adrian's obstinacy.

“Probably has something to do with you knocking my ass out,” said obstinate muscle has to say of why she refuses to calm down.

“I told you-” is as far as the bartender gets before she just gives up, realizing she's not making any better progress and heaving a weary, “Eh, forget it.”

Demonstrating an unnecessary lack of chill, Adrian is, during that, still continuing with, “And the fact that you were actually planning on taking advantage of it.” Apparently she was listening to her girlfriend.

“Well, can you really blame me for wanting to talk to them individually since you clearly weren't going to budge?” Rita inquires with exasperation, having enough energy for one final defense of her character.

The brick wall of muscle, having offered unending resistance, proposes that Rita, “Could have at least let me have a drink and dinner first.” As if inebriation has never been used as an underhanded means by which to achieve nefarious ends.

Still, the bartender, rather wanting an out from this discourse, suggests the obvious, seeing no problems. “... We can still do that, y'know.” Dinner is right here. The booze is back at Rita's place. She's entirely correct.
“Except now I can't trust you because you'll try shit,” Adrian raises in cautious counter, expressing a damning lack of trust.

“... Did I really fall that low in your eyes?” That this hurts Rita shows in both eyes and voice, each deeply awash in disappointment.

All the same Adrian points out, “You did it once.” In spite of Rita having justified herself well and tried nothing more untoward than consulting the rest of the A-Team.

“I just wanna have chickens and more special stuff,” the bomb pipes up for her vote. She knows not why so much has been made of this ordeal, but she's sure this time could be better spent on consumption.

This catches the bartender's attention, who not less than twelve hours ago solved at least half of this problem. “... Did your thermos run out already?” she asks, impressed and surprised in equal measure by the possibility.

“Uh-huh!” Aidra confirms, quite happy all the same. “I had lots to drink while we were driving around,” she explains, of how those extended, otherwise dull periods were spent,

“Huh, didn't think you liked it that much.” Well, now she's aware; she's likewise aware Adrian is being unreasonable, so she regards that girl once again, for purposes of informative illumination. “Anyway. Let me tell you this, since you want that power all to yourself. It's not something easy to relocate. I can't just yank it out of you with a magic word. Or touching you. It'd take a ritual and several hours. Or a day, depending on how rusty we are.” The frank and honest rundown of how the transfer would even work does get the muscle to think on things.

Her major consideration, once she's put the thought in, is a straightforward, “Am I going to explode or go mad in the next two days?”

“... Depends,” the bartender replies, just a little gingerly. Upon what does this variance depend, precisely? “How well can you hold your sanity while fighting?” Something incredibly concerning, then. “Be honest.”
Dubiously honestly, Adrian's chosen response is a barely believable, “... Enough.” For reasons surely unfathomable, Rita squints at her, not quite convinced. Coach, for reasons actually unfathomable, tries to look innocent, rather than ratting Adrian out.

“She likes to shout a lot when she's punching things!” the bomb exclaims, to make up for the second head's reluctance to throw the muscle under the bus. She then continues to muse, “But then she doesn't have a head so she can't shout anymore. But then it grows back! So she has a head again.” Her musings don't exactly contribute a lot of value.

Adrian still needs to justify herself for all the shouting, which takes the form of the claim, “I haven't hit or killed anyone who didn't earn it.” This, at least, is the honest truth. How much it reflects on her sanity is a debatable matter.

More debates, however, aren't really what Rita is after right now, considering the lengthy one that just occurred. There is one deflection she'd like to address again all the same, before she'll let anything rest. “You still haven't answered my question. What do you wanna do with that flame? Or what do you want to become?” To this, then, the same answer rolls in three times.

“We just wanna go blow up bad people, right?” Aida suggests with a shrug, not thinking much on the matter of the power.

Simultaneously does the muscle shrug and propose, “Someone who goes around fixing shit and punching shit like we did here?”

“We solve fight problems,” Altina states, to round things out. “Other people solve talking problems. It worked out here, didn't it?” So it did, to quite stellar effect.

Context on the matter has changed though, which is why Rita gazes upon Adrian with dissatisfaction amid the A-Team's unanimous agreement. “See? This is the problem. With all this power you got, you either become a necromancer or you go insane and kill everyone around you. Sometimes both. I'd rather you do the former.”
If the ultimatum truly is this, then it follows naturally the muscle can only give one answer. “Then I'll be a necromancer who goes around fixing shit and punching shit.” One minor addition is all that's offered, hardly altering the course. Its reception?

“... There you go, then.” So simple and accepting that it's a wonder this entire cavalcade of conversational combat was remotely necessary.

With that seemingly settled, Adrian seeks to know the very same, “What would you do with it?” Into the mold of this question, the bartender pours something much more concrete.

“... I guess I'd start by building a wall around downtown, make some dolls to beef up security, since the legions don't amount to much... I'd probably try to strike a deal with the Chinese or the Russians to keep us out of their little dispute... And if that didn't work out, I'd just take everyone and go settle somewhere deeper in Africa. Maybe the rainforest. The desert is getting a little old.” Outlined thoughtfully, idea by idea, Rita proposes a plan for the betterment of the African people. Who could find fault in such a thing?

Why, the muscle, of course, whose outlook on the matter is a dour, “And that's assuming one of them doesn't try to kick your ass immediately.” Something which she's already attempted to stress, to no effect before, managing as little now.

“... Well, honestly, right now, that'd pose a problem to them unless they became allies out of nowhere,” Rita informs her, to back up why she puts so little stock in the suggestion. “If they make a move on us, the other side takes the opportunity to make a move on them. I don't think they care much about diplomacy as long as either China or Siberia falls.” Amid this lesson on why retribution cannot arrive with unavoidable immediacy, Adrian finds a moment to cut in.

She gets as far as a dubious, “That's a pretty big if,” before the bartender is carrying right along and steamrolling over her attempts to protest.
“It'd be suicide for them. Besides, the Chinese have quite a long way to move to get here. Unlike the Russians who have settlements in Anatolia, the Chinese's advance bases are... Well, it's this right here. And not much else.” Through continued musings on the likelihood of any kind of martial force swiftly causing problems, Rita effectively drowns the muscle in geopolitics, finally cracking through the brick wall.

With waving arms that silence the bartender, Adrian relents, unable to withstand any longer. “Can we just deal with this shit later,” she demands more than asks, patience worn thin. “I'd like that celebration now.” The likelihood of that rests upon one principal factor.

“... Can you stand up?” So queried by Rita, the muscle proves that her legs are able to bear her, once more upright; the seated bartender rises in tandem, that both may ready themselves. “See? All better,” she says, as finally things settle, no points left to be proven.

“Is it time to go get chickens now?” the bomb is quick to suggest alongside this, more than ready for a heroes' feast following the A-Team's exploits.

“Oh, oh, I can help with that!” the butcher cries, ever eager to do her job, where she's free to bask in the company of chickens.

She'll have more than that, in light of an exuberant, “I wanna help too so we can keep holding hands!” Aida is naturally not rebuffed, and so finds herself dragged towards the coop; she hums idly as she and her date go to collect an assortment of cluckers.

“Speaking of chickens,” the bartender starts conversationally as they depart, “remember when I didn't want to see Kuku?” A half-curious sound from the muscle confirms this quietly, prodding, “Well, I was afraid she'd recognize my flame and make a scene. Turns out she couldn't recognize Carla's flame either.” Fears just as unfounded as Adrian's seem to be, germinating with naught but imagination run rampant.
The girl in question has little to say of the matter, having busied herself arguing rather than process being the object of such pent-up affection. A simple, “Instead she recognized me,” is all that comes as comment.

“She did,” Rita agrees, tone lightening considerably. “Because you have that huge thing in your tummy.” Poking the aforementioned abs, the bartender commences a close inspection, for reasons beyond musing upon musculature. Soon after is the assessment, “I'm not positive on it, but it's about five shards in here. Who knows, maybe Mariana acquired some power on her own.”

Having no idea how it might actually be done, the muscle's jesting suggestion is that, “Maybe we should go half and half.” It's met with a pause, during which the bartender begins to ponder, towards a slowly dawning revelation.

“... That'd work, actually,” she states when that realization hits, invalidating a not insignificant chunk of the recent past. “But you'd still need training. Or a mentor,” she reminds Adrian, lest she think half of this necromantic bounty might be wielded without concern.

In her usual idle nature, the bird in muscled arms comments, “... That doesn't sound terrible to me,” lest her silence reign overlong.

“Oh, right, I almost forgot,” Adrian suddenly says, her mind already away from the idea of training with necromancy. “There's something in the truck I wanna show you,” Rita is informed, displaying mild curiosity.

With a casual, “Well, show me,” the bartender finds herself lead a short distance away, where the object to be shown off rests.

Said object is not Lola, though she snatches priority away from unveiling it when Adrian leans in. “... Are you alright?” the trucker asks, eyeing the girl who, to her eyes, randomly passed out. The concerns are waved carelessly away, after which the muscle is further pressed, “Didn't you faint back there? Did the heat finally get to you?”
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“Please, I make others faint from the heat,” Adrian tells her, missing even an ounce of humility as she does so.

“... Never change, Adrian.” Smiling and shaking her head, Rita's tune changes abruptly as her surprise is unveiled. It has no limbs but for a head, and used to be protecting Mariana's sand-manor. “... Goddamnit,” Rita spits as she sees Hydra's body. “Where did you get this? And where are the other two?”

The latter query requires but one flat word from the muscle, “Dead.” The former, in these inverse answers, merits something more intensive. “They were protecting the queen bitch and didn't want to give up.” A pity, but their devotion is quite commendable, even if equally foolish.

“... That's a bit of a problem, but...” Brief retrospect follows this muttering, before the bartender concedes, “Actually, if you killed them, that just goes to show they weren't very good at their job.” Obvious as the answer seems, she opts all the same to confirm, “Bugs in them?”

With a cursory understanding of how a necromancer views the world, Adrian wonders, “Can't you see that for yourself?” She perhaps could, had gruesome combat not removed any potential bugs.

“Well, she looks clean now,” Rita claims as she gives the torso another once-over, “but it's pretty clear you patched her up. Did you remove the bug?” Nope. Hard to remove something that was never there. Understanding trickles out of the bartender's expression, dwindling to nothing before she breathes, “... Then why the hell was she..? Loyalty to Mariana?”

It's a question the muscle's ill-equipped to answer, for want of any context beyond staunch refusal to let the A-Team into that earthen mansion. “I dunno, was she?” the girl asks, as lost as the African necromancer.

“They weren't exactly related. Or close,” Rita informs her, further mystifying the why of such steadfast resolve as was displayed.
Rather than dwell and become confounded, Adrian opts to simplify matters, or at least try to. “I was gonna ask her when she woke up,” the bartender is told, and in pursuit of this, the muscle begins shaking the torso with one arm. The other, of course, continues to clutch close Altina.

“None of them had bugs,” that bird reports, to run things down slightly more formally, “but they were very rude and didn't much care to surrender.” With ambivalence is added a truthful, “It's more luck than anything that this one didn't die.”

If this is illuminating anything for Rita, it certainly doesn't show on her face, nor in her reply of, “That's a bit confusing. Hyena wasn't the type to do dumb things like that. In a way, we made her smarter than us.” But alas, intelligence and rationality fall to the wayside when emotions boil beyond their means.

“Well, I asked her if she wanted to give up, and she said she'd rather die.” As the muscle paradoxically demonstrates and defies, having been willing to curb her less civil impulses; a gesture amounting to naught when death is decided as preferable.

Now with a jolt does Hydra shoot awake, perplexed immensely as she suddenly comes to, still being shaken. She gets this stopped with an automatic and alarmed, “WHAT.” Mostly as it surprises Adrian.

“Oh hey, that actually worked,” the muscle remarks as she stops, having expected little of the gesture. Yet sure enough a conscious Hydra sits there in one arm, across from Altina.

Who takes it upon herself to address that inquiry, regardless of how little was actually asked. “You're alive!” Hydra is informed as the bird leans across her girlfriend, to better gaze upon this other passenger of muscles. “We're not sorry about everyone else, but you get to live by happenstance.” Her proximity hardly lends this reassurance what it lacks – actual reassurance.
The first person Hydra sees in retreating from the avian space-invader is the bartender, addressed with ample doses of haste, befuddlement, and aggravation. “Rita? What the hell is going on here?” Halted are any answers by Colonel's stern approach.

“... So, uh. Mind explaining yourself a bit?” Well meaning as she might be, the cowgirl's attempt at interrogation is cut short by Adrian's angry glare, under which she cracks, becoming instantly flustered. “W-what. I'm just asking,” Colonel insists. And Hydra's just answering, in her own way.

The bereaved doll spews forth shouts of justification, maintaining her moral high ground with all the fervency of a true believer. “I got nothing to explain! You're not my necromancer! The mayoress is! She is the inhe-”

“I am.” Two forceful words are all the muscle requires to silence this tirade, Hydra nigh instantly drawn to look at her.

“... No.” The word is whispered, disbelief unable to wholly assert itself. “You didn't.” This followup fails as well, nagging doubt more than evident in the waver of both eye and voice.

It's no wonder then that such attempts die in the face of Adrian's resolute, “Yes, I did.” There can be no doubt as to what transpired while the girl was out of it.

“You k-killed them all...” Hydra chokes out with a sniffle, tears building within her eyes until they begin to run down her cheeks.

Rita finally finds a chance to cut in as the grief is mounting, and her advice is to, “Calm yourself a bit, would you.” She would not, as instanced by the unceasing flow.

“At that point it was them or us,” the muscle points out, but this as well does little to quell, and in fact only throws upon the emotional flames further kindling.

With the newfound roaring of those flames, sadness turns instead to fury as she struggles against Adrian's hold. “This girl! She killed the mayoress! Kill her! Get the first company here!” Yet she inspires nothing, no matter her roused passion.
“Eh, I don't think so,” the very commander of that company casually says, stunning Hydra and leaving her dumbstruck.

In this void of outbursts, the bird finds time and cause to remark, “It's funny you ask for the first company to come here when your people were trying to kill them all.” One wonders if enough even remain to act as inconvenience; it seems unlikely, on considering the bugged second company's performance.

"I don't think it's funny,” Colonel claims, the humor of it all flying so far over her head it doesn't so much as disturb her ten gallon hat.

Thus with verbal scalpel in hand, Altina turns to the blonde bimbo, to autopsy her statement. “Not 'ha-ha' funny. Funny like irony. Or maybe not irony. I'm not sure I know the right word.” Inelegant though the cuts are, they get the job done.

“Oh, I get it now!” The dunce has finally arrived, and all it took to get her here was the death of one innocent piece of observation.

A moment of silence is not observed, as the muscle moves forward and adds to her body count; she did kill Marina, yes, “And her sister, and the other three who were also attached to her. Cat's kind of out of the bag on that one.” Having had full authority and just cause to do so, there is no guilt to the admission. No remorse. These are but simple facts.

“... You piece of shit,” Hydra hisses in the face of this, snapped from her stupor, expression building towards a snarl in time with tempers flaring once more. “That power is not yours!” she cries, having no real recourse beyond this.

That she hardly started with it is acknowledged and ultimately ignored in Adrian's immodest, “Maybe, but that's kind of my decision now isn't it?”

“It kinda is for now,” the rightful owner of the power agrees, after an awful lot of effort spent trying to reclaim it, most being fruitless.
With that small interjection passing, the muscle continues, “Just like how your mayoress decided that the other four were hers.” But how wrong she is to claim this, and the record needs to be set straight.

“Save for that nerd who was into bugs, they were all in agreement! You damn liar!” Such immense conviction coming from Hydra, boundless belief to be found in this baseless absurdity.

Having actually held discourse with them, Adrian offers an incredulous, “Really? Because they were all bitching at her when we came in. Like, that's how we found her so easily.”

“... And they were all in agreement? -Hah.-” The bird chips in as well, finding the very idea even more laughable than calling for the first company. “I have to wonder if you -ever- met the rest of their little council, seeing as they all seemed to despise her.” The devout loyalist can't even conjure refutation, as assuredly as the combination is delivered.

Before she can come up with something, the muscle presses forward to muse upon a fictitious truth. “So did the mayoress make you then?” To the one she knows was responsible, she slips a silencing glance; Rita looks as though she had something to say, but obliges all the same.

“... What do you care?” the half-intact girl spits, her mood careening downwards, cratering near but not quite at petulance. “The necromancer made us. And her. And she was the true inheritor.” At least one of these statements is true, and it's that one which is addressed.

With a knowing edge sharpening her tone, Adrian asks, “What about the actual necromancer? Would you listen to her?” And through these words she hands Hydra a shovel, with which the girl instantaneously digs a grave for herself.

“Obviously.” That's the only word necessary, unearthing six feet of dirt in a single breath, but all the same, with undue confidence, she continues, “But she's not here anymore, dumbass. She left all of her power with the big shots in town.”
In the face of such misinformation, what is the muscle to do but blithely correct Hydra? “Well, except for the fact that she's right here.” A statement of muted efficacy, for it meets a damning assumption.

“Don't you pull that shit on me. That power is not yours.” Understandably, Adrian's smugness undercuts what she means to imply, finding hostility rather that understanding. So a finger is raised to point at the bartender, Hydra's eyes following to the unassuming doler of drunkenness, whereupon she offers a dubious, “... Excuse you?”

Seeing that the mathematics of the situation seem to be confusing Hydra, the muscle aids her in adding two and two using the obvious. “You really think someone who could fuck with the dead and give all their power away couldn't disguise themselves?”

“A valid question,” Rita agrees with a smile, prompting everything to slide slowly into place for the confused, combative doll.

She still doesn't sound like she believes it, but with wide eyes, it's clearly more a matter of shock. “You're kidding, right? Right under my goddamn nose?” Precisely there, as it had to be if China should suspect nothing.

“Kinda clever, you gotta admit.” Commendations offered to the bartender, freely and sincerely, by Adrian.

A chipper chirp from the bird inside her grasp confirms, “We certainly never noticed.” Rightly proud can Rita be, though she opts instead for humility.

“... Oh, please, guys. It would be clever if I -didn't- have to do all that.” All that the bartender gets for trying to talk herself down is a shrug by the muscle, ill suited to matters of being humble.

Her considerations, then, are applied elsewhere, to the other girl in her arms. “So we told you something, so tell us, what convinced you that the mayoress was the one you should follow like that?”

“Only natural... She was our leader when the actual necromancer left.” At last, the girl has calmed to the point proper discourse can be considered.
Not that Adrian cares to carefully navigate anything, bluntly wondering, “Even when she was crazy?”

“... Who the hell are you calling crazy?” Hydra counters, a scrutinizing squint accompanying her words. “I saw you in that fight. You have no right to call her that.” Yet perhaps the muscle's insanity offers her the perfect perspective to do precisely that.

So viewing things, she defines precisely who it is she thinks is crazy, that being, “The one who decided they could do better with a fraction of the power the necromancer had.” An ill-considered path, that one.

“Well, to be fair, it was more than half,” Rita chips in, giving Mariana what credit she's due. Unleashing a plague upon the town is hardly cause to solely disparage her.

Ignoring this addition, Adrian dispenses further disparaging. “And was able to be stopped by four of us. Not a very good sign of her chances, was it?” Not really; nor are these facts good for Hydra's morale.

“Well, she also did not know how to use it properly, I reckon,” Rita states, sealing that the entire venture was a foolish one. Hydra's shoulders slump, and that marks the end of any attempts to defend her mayoress; not of Rita speaking, however. “And dolls are strong in general. End of story. Stories of dolls killing necromancers are plentiful. There's even a doll that is idolized like a god in Anatolia because of that.”

The bartender's words, mitigating as they may be, do not much hearten Hydra – nor Adrian, whose own head hangs and shakes as she mutters, “Way to undermine the point...”

“... Oh, sorry,” Rita says, apologetic only momentarily before she asks, “... What was the point again?” as she realizes she's not sure what she's apologizing over.

Illumination is provided through the yet disappointed statement, “That the mayoress was crazy and couldn't have done what she was setting out to do...”
“Right! And you're absolutely correct,” the bartender agrees, lacking reasons to refute this. Not even pride, considering more than half her power amounted to little. “Which, in turn, only serves to make me look bad.” Conclusions are thus drawn, and difficult to overturn.

Perhaps why the muscle opts against trying to do so, fixing her attention instead upon Hydra once more. “But anyway! What are we gonna do with you,” she asks of the fragment of a girl clutched by an arm.

“You killed my sisters. You know what to do.” The eyes glancing barely back at Adrian are listless and lightless, conveying easily what the merciful option would be.

In defiance of this comes the response, “Take you with us.” The mutilated body, its face once dour, changes at once to disbelief with what was just was proposed. “Yeah,” the muscle confirms simply, as if to assure Hydra she heard correctly.

“Alright, I'm convinced. You really are insane.” One may take the girl's tone as flat refusal, leaving no room to consider she might be swayed otherwise.

An attempt is made all the same with a none too pleasant query of, “Would you rather I beat your ass?” Its efficacy is startling; someone of the muscle's build should at least achieve a twitch.

“If that means I get to see them again, I don't give a shit,” Hydra replies instead, without any fear of what retribution this statement may bring. But what it brings is uncertainty, for when she thinks on it a moment, Adrian realizes she has no idea what it would accomplish. So she turns to the necromancer and expert; does it mean that?
That the leading gesture is a shrug bodes poorly for the words soon to pass Rita's lips. “We may mess with the dead, but we've never been dead ourselves. We actively try to avoid that, even.” As most tend to; sensible that necromancers follow this trend. “Or at least, that's what Barabas wanted to do.” The random name inspires, quite obviously, questions as to who this individual might be. Half-invested is the answer of, “Eh, some big shot European necromancer who was researching immortality and making the undead into living beings again. Something like that.” A queer goal for a necromancer, the latter, but whatever occupies the mind.

“Anyway, I betcha it's nothin' on the other end,” the muscle posits, not much grabbed to further discuss this Barabas character. “I mean, if that's where we go the first time we die, we probably forgot it for a reason.” A not implausible proposition; who would recall a void of nothingness, where the infinite black fills with boredom until even it runs over?

The bartender finds nary an objection to raise, and in fact decides, “I'll have to agree. Even I have gaps in my memory from when I switched bodies. It's not pretty.” Similarly, Hydra's present expression is hardly a beautiful one, as her desires seem doomed.

“... But you can bring them back, can't you?” the girl asks eventually, in dire need of a reuniting resolution. Consultation again finds itself directed Rita's way.

A second of ginger consideration passes, whereupon the bartender leads with, “Well, that depends.” And upon what does this girl's happiness depend? “Did you leave any behind? … Or did you eat it all?”

“We didn't eat everything,” the muscle reports, against the grim portents of normal procedures. “We were kind of in a rush.”

As to haste thanks are paid, corroboration comes with Altina's, “That's true! Mostly she just ate the mayoress at the end.”
“Entirely possible,” Rita then declares, with an upraised thumb of approval. “Although I'm not too sure because neither of us is at full power.” Such resignations shall have to be accepted, though with mitigating reassurances.

Such as, from the bird, “Well! If I can be brought back from that one time I was just a bit of my chest, I'd think we could manage -something- with the others back there. Probably.” She too, however, shall not complete certainty.

“Sure, let's try it. It'll be fun.” Guaranteed or not, Adrian is more than eager to give her new abilities a test run. Presently owning the majority of Rita's power, she can obviate her concern of wanting strength.

Eyeing the muscle, the bartender muses aloud upon the irrelevant. “I'm not sure if that statement is proof that you have the right mindset for this or if that just makes you insane.” Does she truly doubt that insanity is Adrian's essence?

“Hey,” the muscle protests, “might as well see what I'm keeping or giving up anyways, right? You want me to bitch and moan about having it instead?” She seems to miss the difference between this and calling the process 'fun.'

In turn Rita protests, “Hey, I'm just trying to be funny. You don't have to go all serious on me.” That Adrian missed this is shrugged off with that same gesture. “I'm still Rita, y'know. At least ninety percent.” This, at least, seems certain, after everything.

“Or are you?” With a sudden glare of dead seriousness, the muscle calls into stark question whether this necromancer truly is the bartender which she's been getting to know.

For her troubles she receives the understanding parry of, “Well, I guess Carla would have to explain that.” In so doing she steals all wind behind Adrian's sails.

“Oh, well I was joking,” the muscle explains, giving up the routine instantly when it doesn't pry any kind of concern out of the bartender.
Who, for her own part, claims, “And I'm serious. This stuff was needlessly complicated. We swapped bodies like, twice, I think.” Whatever convolutions these swappings produced are best not dwelt upon, nor shall they be.

“Anyway, new plan, try this necromancy thing then we get smashed afterwards.” So stands Adrian's decree as soon as the specifics become difficult.

Fine plan though it is, it hinges upon someone in particular, whose job entails getting everyone to both battle site and bar in a timely manner. Lola has spent her long stint of silence with mouth agape as she's watched these proceedings. “... Well, you lost me at the whole 'Rita is the necromancer' bit,” she admits, in search of some clarification.

“Don't worry about it,” the muscle waves her off, not having time for any of this when she's still sober. She settles upon the half-serious thought of, “Or I'll turn you into a newt.” With this, she assures the trucker's lack of protest.

Confirmation comes shortly in a thoughtful, “You might just be able to do it.” from Rita herself, resident expert on what necromancy can and cannot accomplish.

“... Why a newt?” Lola asks, utterly baffled. What she fails to see is Alexis' ghost possessing Adrian, forcing her to reference Monty Python in the girl's absence.

The muscle doesn't regard this query, but Altina opts to, countering with, “Why -not- a newt?” To this, the trucker has no retort, especially not when the bird realizes, “Ooh, party materials!”

“We got lots of chickens!” Aida announces over this, finally and triumphantly returning. One hand still holds onto one of Kuku's, the bomb's other arm struggling to clutch far too many chickens for both her size and strength. “Is it time to go get drinks?” The weight of her burden cannot hope to stymie her enthusiasm for the coming celebration.

What can is the restructured priorities laid down by Adrian. “We'll have the party after we do some of that necro stuff.”
“Oh. So we're not doing the party yet.” The energy of prior vacates Aida's voice in light of these most troubling of circumstances.

Less affected, Kuku bears queries of utmost import. “Do you want theshe in the back of the truck?” So indicated are her own armful of chickens, which strain her considerably less to carry.

“... Yes? Yes! Yes. Chickens go in the truck.” The bomb is roused from the depths of disappointment with these varying inflections, accompanying the butcher to offload the morning's meal.

Lola, lost yet, watches her truck being co-opted yet further and mutters, “... I'm still trying to wrap my head around this.” Though the muscle may not seek to assuage her, someone will.

“You get used to it,” Carla tells the trucker, coming up to the cabin and offering what little consolation she can.

Eyes upon the prize, Adrian takes this moment to confirm, “I guess you gotta come along too.”

“Yep. Otherwise Rita is going to be useless.” Tellingly, Rita has no point to raise against so dire a need for her other necromantic half.

She instead has her own requisite confirmation. “We're bringing Kuku and the Colonel along, right?” Its reply is a strange one.

“Do we have to?” It hardly feels as if the muscle needs to regard the bimbo and butcher joining in this venture with such reticence.

The bartender wards this away, glancing at both to speak, “Well, you can see their flames so... Do I really have to explain everything?” No, only until Adrian gets bored and tries to move things along.

“Do we really need all of it?” This attempt at inquiry dies in its tracks, for matters much greater loom upon the horizon.

In specific, Aida and her desire to keep her hand within the butcher's. “Is Kuku coming to the party too?” she wonders, question turning shortly to exclamation as she turns to chickenmancer. “Kuku! You should come to the party too!” Now the idea has hold of her, and it seems so terribly obvious in hindsight.
“Oh. Ish that part of the date? I forget how thish worksh shometimesh.” Kuku herself does not leap forward with unerring certainty, as she tries to recall what knowledge she has of dates.

The bomb needs no such thing, willing to place faith in her gut feelings, much as she does in Allah. “It's more of the date! I dunno how dates work either. But they seem fun, so let's keep doing it!” Concrete acceptance on the butcher's part is forestalled.

“... Y'know, I really gotta fix your jaw,” Rita sighs, reminded of how long she's let this speech impediment rule Kuku's mouth as she watches this.

She's met with prior alluded opposition, an argument rooted in misconception. “But the necromansher wanted it to be like thish.”

“We did not,” Carla stresses, which accomplishes little in the face of Kuku's misplaced affections.

The bespectacled bartender stares at one of her favored creations for a moment, before giving up with a resigned, “... I guess she'll understand eventually.”

“I can fix it,” the muscle proposes, owning the lion's share of the power that marks Africa's necromancer.

That same power acts as balm, soothing refusal such it turns to neutrality, expressed by the butcher's noncommittal, “... I guesh, if that'sh what you want.” That, however, is not good enough.

“Is that what you want?” Adrian asks, turning it back around, not content with a reply so lacking in vigor.
That, at least, is present in Kuku's, “I don't mind either way!” A stance or side taken is notably absent, but at least the muscle believes she'll really be fine with it. It's as the newly christened necromancer is setting her charges within the truck, freeing up her hands to work, that the chickenmancer finally sees which side she prefers. “Ah. But maybe you should do it. It'sh really hard to kish people like thish.” She will, after all, be on an extended date with Aida. Ever unobservant, Adrian herself misses the change in tune – but Coach raises an eyebrow in her stead. Nothing comes of this knowledge before Rita pipes up.

“Well, I assume you already did it once. But do you want a guiding hand or something?” The A-Team may be at present intact, but perhaps shifting flesh is more difficult than returning it to a form once held.

Whatever the case may be, the muscle rises again with an ever casual, “Eh, sure, why not.” So it is that she falls under the bartender's instruction. In the midst of this, Rita's fingers sink into Kuku's head as if ethereal, phasing straight through flesh, that she may indicate key areas to not disturb lest speech become altogether impossible. Shortly, Adrian is armed with the knowledge of this phasing technique, how to alter the butcher's jaw, and how not to; once she has this knowledge, it's surprisingly easy to mold the girl and do away with the source of the impediment. Not quite convinced it can be so easy, the muscle rises with an uncertain, “Done, I guess.” Well? There's a simple test.

“I dunno,” Kuku speaks, not calling upon the consonant that caused her such difficulty. “Did it work?” she asks, again dodging that troublesome letter and the sounds it represents.

For want of an actual echo, Aida opts to artificially create one. “I dunno. Did it?” Of course, it draws no closer to the truth.

“I think it did,” Adrian decides, with no proof but that she's pretty sure she followed the bartender's directions.
As a much more pragmatic means of finding out how well it's worked, said bartender lays forth a challenge. “Say 'sensational.'”

“Uhhh...” Slowly and uncertainly, the butcher begins her attempt. “... Sch...” Not quite that. “Sehnch...” Nor is it that. “Sensayyy...” That's closer; keep trying, just a little more. “Sen-sa-ti-o-nal?” There, in a storm of syllables, is the word she was bidden to repeat. Proof the operation was a success.

There can, however, be more fun had, slightly at the newly repaired girl's expense. What, precisely? The muscle's own devilish challenge, “She sells sea shells by the sea shore.” Emboldened, Kuku charges forth rapidly. Precisely what one doesn't do when confronted with a tongue-twister.

“She shells sheshells by the she sh... No, wait.” Pausing in her reminiscent butchering, the girl of that same profession realizes the truth. “... This is hard!” So it is. It is also good enough.

Satisfied that Adrian is capable of at least these basic repairs, Rita turns to her, to ask the all important question. “What do you think? Ready for two full bodies?” Sure. That doesn't sound all that much harder. “You might get a little tired there, but I guess we can serve as your batteries.” Necromancer and battery alike due to attend, all begin to pile into the truck. Or, most do. The bartender in particular opts instead to latch onto a ladder.

“... Excuse me, what are you doing?” Colonel asks, pausing in her own entry to look at the strange behavior before her. Not that it's quite as strange as Altina hopping back out and onto the truck's roof, but the bimbo can only process and question so much at once.

Making a rather childish noise as she tries to formulate an explanation, Rita eventually gives up on that to defend herself in the only way coming to mind. “... I always wanted to try this. Don't ask.”

“As long as you don't fall off.” A rather simple requirement laid down by the muscle, who receives surety in return.
With a dismissive wave of the hand and a confident, “Pshaw. I got this,” Rita secures her position, letting none take it from her.

“It isn't really difficult,” Altina says in defense of the act, quite certain of this after her first-hand experience. “Ooh, though you should have seen us when we drove through all the legions! -That- was a mess. It was great.” From above she reminisces on murderous rampages scant hours prior, as the front seat grows slightly crowded. Between Hydra's body, Adrian, Colonel, and Lola, squeezing Carla in there would prove a trial.

Looking at how much space she'd have for herself if she didn't settle in someone's lap, the radio host decides, “... Screw this,” as she jumps onto the ladder beside Rita's. The front seats are no further taxed then, as Aida opts to drag her date to the back, where both are content within the feathery pile of poultry.

“... So we're going back to the big bad's lair then?” Lola asks slowly, both to confirm her destination and to give herself slightly more time to process all of this newfound knowledge. Yeah. That is in fact the plan. It's not one she'll agree to without a slight condition. “... Fine, but only if you explain everything to me along the way.” There, then, the trucker is treated to the short version of things by Adrian, and when she presses for more detail, a slightly longer version of events is presented, still pared into the smallest fragments possible. The muscle isn't exactly much for longwinded explanations. Of course, even the short version leads Lola to the natural conclusion at the end of this tale of necromantic power trading hands. “... I'm gonna need a few drinks.”
To this is an imaginary glass raised by Adrian, suffering from the curse of sobriety. “Now you're speaking my language.” Right. Booze would be the muscle's mother tongue. “We'll get some after we're done with this.” Thereafter the trip continues through familiar territory. Few mind the corpse-strewn nature of the streets, except for Colonel, whose guerrillas these bodies used to be. Those still infused with unlife are working towards cleaning the carnage, distracted by the truck's passing; the bimbo waves for them to return to work, and so they do. A few repeats of this see everyone out in the dunes, where the cleanup detail hasn't reached. Sitting there among them, as before, is the manor created in sandy imitation of its now torched sister. No time is lost in exiting the truck, to see the mangled mess that used to be an alliterative trio of guards. “This enough?” Adrian asks, turning to her teacher in the necromantic arts.

“Well...” Sweeping her eyes over what remains after a bit of cannibalism, a bit of patching up, and a lot of slaughter, the bartender's assessment ends up being, “For a single one, maybe.” Clicking her tongue in disappointment, she poses a question of her own. “Isn't there more meat around here?” Oh, isn't there? If only she saw the mess left by Mariana and her sisters.

Prior to providing this information, Adrian asks a rather stupid question, considering every time the A-Team has patched themselves up. “I mean, do you mean their meat specifically? Because we can grab some more from inside.”

“Nah. Any meat will do as long as you have a little bit of their gibs,” Rita reminds her, much as Altina's anecdote earlier should have. The muscle's ears must have just missed it, like they miss many things – they're not terribly good, despite their animal nature.
Now armed with knowledge she forgot she had, Adrian is suitably prepared to pilfer. “I guess I'll go grab some from inside then,” she announces, vanishing into the duplicate manor by means of a recently added opening. There before the eyes sits another scene of slaughter, though it's changed slightly since last anyone viewed it. The great pile of meat has vanished, to be replaced with the giblets of several other unfortunate souls. At a glance, it seems to be chunks of the priest, the judge, and the executioner, barely recognizable as such. Never minding the magic trick of making a giant of gore disappear, raw materials are grabbed from the various deceased. In broad, the unceremonious jumble of parts so collected comes from the less mindful of the undead. Those that might qualify as a person – even the drummer, whose music should merit a death sentence – are largely left alone, that they might be returned in the future. For now however, there are two targets for resurrection. “So how do we do this?” Again alongside this query is the bartender regarded for her knowledge of the subject.

Motioning for those bearing a fraction of her power to gather 'round, Rita's lesson begins. The subject covered is the creation of a body from scratch, using only the fleshy equivalent of scrap and a few sprinklings of what used to be an individual. In capacities both physical and spiritual, the assembled inheritors perform their own share of the molding, working in tandem towards various demonstrative limbs and organs. At the conclusion of knowledge's instillation, there isn't so much a body as a new collection of marginally less mangled bits and pieces. Viewing this less gory gore with a minute measure of pride, the bartender's voice puts itself towards the nonetheless surprised utterance of, “Wow, I feel like a teacher.” The comment sends a slight cascade through the group, free now to speak.
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“And I feel dirty!” Colonel declares for her own addition, looking at the vast quantities of splatter, semi-solid and liquid, that the creation of a body's bits from mush entails. 'Feeling' dirty undersells her current state.

“I'm already used to this,” Kuku announces with a little giggle, unperturbed by one more set of stains upon her smock. Carla can find nothing to say however, looking even after these trial runs to be feeling the exhaustion this group effort was supposed to stave off.

Rest is not an item on the itinerary, despite this. Rita gathers attention once more, convinced skills are up to snuff. “But that's the gist of it,” she tells the assembly, confirming the lesson's end. “Now you just have to build the body. Getting on that...” is precisely what then commences, as everyone works towards the recreation of one of Mariana's guardians. Amid this gruesome task, surgery in only a questionable sense, varying levels of concentration are applied. In particular, the muscle amuses herself as she works with a bit of music.

“-Torches blazed and sacred chants were praised,-” she sings softly, getting into the spirit with an appropriate tune. In due time, bolstered by song, a shell of a body is formed; inside are placed the many and varied organs belonging there. Once this all has been created and sealed away, the process becomes markedly less messy. Then the work is much akin to the sculpting of clay, as skin and muscle beneath are shaped to conform to the features the original body once knew. Thereby, such efforts leave before the necromantic collective the unconscious form of Hammerhead, sans a few extremities; arms aren't terribly important.
With one of Triple-H's members behind them, the bartender looks everyone over with a smile. “... See? That wasn't so bad,” she cheerfully chips in, though not without a modicum of thoughtfulness upon her expression. “... Gotta say, it's much easier in a group.” And so she may at least, in this moment, enjoy that she is part of an entire necromantic cabal.

“That was easier than I thought it'd be,” Adrian agrees as she looks at the amputated body, still energized and hungry for more. Not literally, thankfully. “So let's do number two, then.”

With a nod and a, “Right,” Rita readies herself, pausing as she sees need to clear something up. “You sure about the whole arms deal, though?” The empty shoulders, portals to the muscle beneath, just look so very lonely without their appendages attached.

“We can give'em arms later, right?” the muscle inquires, intent on deferring the gifting of limbs. Sure. Of course that's possible. With necromancy, anything's possible; they could have no limbs and be just fine, as long as that's how they're designed. “You wanna chance them taking a swing at one of you before we explain shit to them?” Eh, what's a chunk torn out of someone's torso between friends?

The bartender chooses not to remind Adrian that one swing isn't really a problem, finding other wisdom to dole out. “We should make them now and keep them -handy-, though.” Or maybe she just wants to make positively awful jokes. To this the muscle shrugs, perhaps armored mercifully by her density, and in short, bloody order, arms sit off to the side, where they'll cause not even minute trouble.

“... How ethical is this?” the radio host is drawn to wonder, seeing the disparate pieces of the rebuilt girl laying around.

From her shoulder perch, the observing avian remarks, “More ethical than leaving them dead, maybe? I don't pretend to know.” A bird's brain is hardly optimized for pondering morality.
“... Does it even matter when you're undead?” Rita asks, looking over at the other half of her necromantic duo before barging bravely forward. “I think not!” And with such gusto, Carla's consideration is put to rest.

Taking a practical view of the matter, Adrian figures, “Can't be worse than raising them in the first place.” Thus are ethics temporally displaced to whensoever 'twas Triple-H found themselves granted unlife.

“Well, raising is easy. That's why there's so many legions around,” Rita explains, able and willing to unveil what inner workings of necromancy she can. “But dolls are an entirely different world. Same with horrors and other simple abominations.”

Of this miniature bout of mentoring, the muscle's only response is a deflecting, slightly dismissive, “You know what I mean.”

“I do,” the bartender is willing to concede, “but I have to explain things properly, y'know. What kind of mentor do you take me for?” Here sits, suffuse with diligence, an earnest instructor of these most dark arts.

And yet her pupil, having petitioned to abscond with a great percentage of her power, would so callously admit, “Well I ain't interested in making that other shit, to be honest.” A statement apt to wound, as might any blade.

“... Wait, so what do you have in mind for your army?” Such a question is asked as dejection colors Rita's face, disappointed in the rebellious student that wouldn't carry these lessons forward.

Yet bafflement, rather than apology, is what marks the retorting query of, “Who said I was making an army?” Has Adrian no shame, to deny the roots of this black profession she so frivolously accepted induction into?

“... Don't you want to be a necromancer?” the bartender, baffled herself, shoots back. “For crying out loud. That's what we do.” All the same, this upstart would cast aside these time-honored traditions.
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With the automatic immediacy of one taking their partner's side, Altina interjects, “What's wrong with not having an army? -We're- an army.” She fails, perhaps, to ponder upon the idea of armies made from such armies; but at least her heart occupies the right place.

“What, you think I'm gonna make an army and try to overthrow everyone?” The muscle treats her interpretation of Rita's meaning with reasonable absurdity. “Then they'd just get pissy at me until I did it.” Though it fades to a different, confident sort of absurd.

In mitigating manner, the bartender's head shakes. “Not necessarily overthrow, but... I guess to be safe?” she proposes, as an alternative to waging war upon the whole of the necro-world. Dipping in volume momentarily, she further offers, “... Some people did it to feel less lonely. But anyway!” And then she storms right ahead, before there's time for thoughts to percolate and arrive at some assumptive state. Into the second reconstruction she leads those who wield her power, further taxing the very same. Physically, the work demands almost nothing, and yet all the same a wave of exhaustion creeps steadily towards those participating, drawing from the dead flesh of some a very living reaction of sweat. Whether placebo or some deeper well of strength draining, it is no impediment grand enough to prevent Hyena from taking form once more, likewise lacking limbs above.

“So when do they wake up?” A poke is given alongside this bored question, now that things are done and Adrian is no longer arm-deep in a visceral muck.
Having, as she does, all the answers, Rita is able to do the muscle one better than estimates of when the girls will naturally awake. “You could force them with a bit of a spark,” she informs the girl foreign to patience, sparing her so much mind-numbing waiting. “But they're going to be weakened at this point, regardless of what you do. They might even refuse to wake up depending on their willpower.” These stipulations barely have time to get out the necromancer's mouth before Adrian is trying to discern the means by which she produces a 'spark' to speed up this process. “A bit more like this,” she's advised, the bartender's hands settling upon the cheeks of one girl, gingerly rubbing. A stark contrast to her sudden cry of, “And then you just LET 'ER RIP!” Certainly, though, this describes the process that her protegee hits upon, hefting and shaking the final member of the trio.

“Cool, it worked,” the muscle remarks in mild interest, watching the groggy stirrings of one pulled back from nebulously close to whatever exists beyond death's ashen veil.

Rita views this now habitual method of awakening, not wholly expressing approval, settling upon a tactful, “... That's a new method. You might be onto something.” Then thereafter is to be stressed, however, “... Seriously, though, it doesn't really matter how you inject them with that little spark. I just think the cheeks method is more... Ahem, delicate.” Mayhap musculature inhibits delicacy.

“I poke 'em with a knife!” Kuku volunteers as further alternative, drawing from her skullcap a blade in demonstration. One droplet of crimson has time to trickle down the edge before a new home in her head is cut.

Watching this, Carla can only surmise, “Good thing we didn't disguise as a chicken.” A statement not without its share of truth.

“... Buh, my arms!” It is at this point, laying upon the ground, that Hammerhead reaches such consciousness as to speak.
That allows Adrian to lay down the ground rules of resurrection. “You get your arms back if you behave.” Incentive aplenty towards good behavior, if substantial outnumbering fails.

“You.” Hyena, few as her options may be, does not shy away from staring the muscle in the eyes as she accuses, “Come to gloat?” An assumption none would deny being fair, considering whom it is about.

Ultimately false, but never let it be said that Adrian can't be accommodating. “No, but if you want me to, I will,” she retorts, daring the disarmed girl to ask for it.

“Do your worst,” the purple haired girl demands in response, not letting herself be cowed by what she believes to be going on.

Seeing this, the muscle settles upon the most compact condensation of events, “I killed your boss and took her shit.” The rest of the A-Team helped, but since only she stole Rita's necromancy, her presumptive pronoun may be excused.

“Rejoice!” That chirp could only come from Adrian's shoulder, where roosts her girlfriend. “You and yours get to live!” Despite explaining the situation, it does not abate any confusion.

Nor does Colonel looking over to the muscle to comment, “I don't think she meant that.” Mostly as her voice confounds the two.

“The Co'nel. What.” Indeed. What. Hammerhead is echoed swiftly by her sister, as both of them realize that, in fact, there are a number of people they know gathered here.

Of these, it is the bartender who takes the lead in announcing, “You get to live. Like Altie said. Ain't that swell?” So very, though only conditionally.

“Where is Hydra?” Hyena is quick to ask, seeing the third of her sisters nowhere among this happy little reunion.

Exploding back into existence enthusiastically, it is Aida who, from behind the butcher, points at the truck. “We came back to fix you 'cause she asked!” An assuaging answer, bringer of peace.
“I see.” With these two words, Hyena's eyes close, in acceptance of the new facts which rule her life. “So, you killed the inheritor.” In the face of this, a calm demeanor is the only thing to be found.

Adrian can further placate concerns before they arise, proffering verbally the next best thing. “Well, the... what's the word, the original is around.” Necromancer. That's the word, Rita assumes. “Well, I meant... inheritee? I don't know.” 'Testator,' she might pick, had she infinite access to dictionary or thesaurus; though one rarely has the chance to enact their own will. “But yes, the inheritor is dead,” the muscle reiterates, wresting relevance back to narration.

“I suppose a 'thank you' is in order.” From her placid position, the purple-haired girl offers a circumstantially surprising statement of serenity. It certainly shocks Hammerhead.

Too busy to accept thanks, the muscle continues trying to quickly disseminate details. In this case, through a mite cryptic, “Turns out, she didn't like the shit the 'inheritor' was doing.”

“... Phew.” Relieved at the lack of love lost in Mariana's death, the bimbo so exhales behind Adrian's information. By the time she questions Hyena with, “But then why follow her?” the muscle is confounded to hear this, seeing connection to her statement and not Hyena's.

All the same, light shall be shed by the more level head. “She was the inheritor. I did not know what she was capable of, having the necromancer's power. I also believed her, in a way. I wanted the Chinese to go.” Alas, the only ones to have gone seem to be African, and by overwhelming majority mere legions. Of this failed venture, the most truthful, fundamental admission is, “I was afraid she'd just snap her fingers and have me lie on the ground, lifeless.” A terrifying prospect of insurmountable power, that.
“Oh, dear,” Rita begins at this notion, adopting the very nature of a chiding mother. “We don't have that kind of power.” So is unwound the ultimate fear provoking the support of an ever-doomed rebellion, rendered silly to- “Unless she shook your hand!” The sudden appending of this exception blindsides Hyena towards befuddlement, as she tries to unravel whether or not her concerns were founded legitimately.

With firsthand understanding and a disdain for this anecdotal process, Adrian is drawn out of her daze, and lays plain one simple desire. “Don't do that, by the way.” A front on which she is cordially met.

“Sorry, sorry,” the bartender offers as apology, sincerity of tone backing her words. “I was cornered, y'know. I can teach you that trick, anyhow!” So the very inciting ability is offered as placation for its underhanded application.

By way of immense skepticism is Adrian's query transformed to statement, “Is that more or less tiring than doing it the normal way.” Doubt and disbelief are to topple as dominoes.

“Less.” This alone might suffice, such a confident, singular assertion of the trick's efficacy. But to extol it yet further, Rita offers the added benefit of, “It's more discreet, too.” To scream and splatter does lack in nuance and subtlety, beyond any doubt. So the muscle finds herself teased, “But I guess discreet isn't really your vibe, eh?”

Ignoring such insinuations of wanting subtlety, their root prior is struck by the blunt assault, “Other than the whole being obviously something you did.” Unfortunately, it ignores that the bartender held no ill intent; proper and malicious application could, certainly, silently subdue foes.

“Oh, come on,” Rita ripostes, having none of this sour mood when no real harm was done. In threatening jest she suggests, “Don't make me shake your hand again.” If only she engaged someone else in this light bit of ribbing.
For in a manner much humorless – one accusatory, it may be said – Adrian plays her metaphorical favored instrument: the harp. “So you were lying about it being a side effect of your therapy.” It's really quite beyond enough, truly.

“Guilty as charged!” the bartender thus responds, an exuberant exclamation that expresses nothing of the sort. Apologies and reparations have been offered for what little harm was done, and there is only ground already tread to be found in continuing such a confrontation.

By grace, a distracting thought flutters through the muscle's mind, adjusting the trajectory of its lone track. “Wait, if we did that again, wouldn't I win due to having more juice?” she ponders, grabbed by these revelations.

“Actually, if you know it's coming, you're pretty much immune to it.” Matter of factly, Rita dashes some of the usefulness of that particular trick. Possibly quite a lot of it, if she doesn't just mean those with necromantic power.

Having sat in the middle of this conversation with an increasingly lost expression, it is now that Hyena finally finds a moment to interject with, “I'm not entirely sure how to interpret this exchange of yours.” The solution to this is simple and direct.

“She,” Adrian starts, pausing to jerk a thumb, the purple-haired amputee's eyes following it to the bartender, “is your necromancer.” What else needs to be said?

Not a lot, evidently, as Hyena buys it at once, surmising, “So you disguised yourself?” Its answer lacks for immediacy, glances spared on the off chance the wrong listener has come to spy.

“Guilty as charged, again!” Rita shouts once she's sure of the claim's safety, vibrantly donning the mantle she once cast aside.

To Hammerhead, this unveils a number of dots, mused quickly over with a, “Wait, fo' real?” So before her do they connect, with an altogether sensible revelation. “No wonder the meat juice was so good.”
“That makes a surprising amount of sense!” Altina agrees, despite having no first-hand experience with the cannibalistic concoction, nor many intentions to change this.

More energetically spurred, the bomb's mind is dragged back elsewhere, from matters of necromancy to, “Meat juice! The party!” Ushering along those present with impotent impatience she inquires, “We brought them back, so we can go have that now, right?”

“So I have a question now.” That the muscle is as yet unsatisfied all is resolved answers Aida plainly, no matter that this ignores her; patience shall need to be exercised, for there is time yet before the feasting and the drinking is to begin. The habitual drunkard, having railed against her sobriety since being pulled from Rita's bar, staves these things off for an awfully compassionate concern. “What's the chance of the Chinese learning how these three were sided with the bugs.”

Hyena offers the solemn reply of, “Depends on how tight-lipped you are,” acknowledging the ultimate choice to be outside her hands. She can, at least, confess to what she is able, in hopes that it leads opinions towards a pardon. “The lieutenant brought over the entire second company to the desert during the sweep. They were ambushed by bugs, of course, as the lieutenant willingly led them into the trap. We knew of this, too.”

Admirable as the stance may be, to admit every aspect of wrongdoing and be judged for the whole of their transgressions, the bimbo's outlook remains, “Your honesty doesn't make me happier.” Those were her guerrillas at the end of the day, ineffectual as the lot proved itself.

“... I am genuinely sorry for what we did.” Where fact alone fails to suffice with surety, the amputee appends with all regret she can muster this apology. So it is that the Colonel considers clemency.
While that decision is weighed, Adrian takes it upon herself to wield her deputized authority. For the offenders, she thus lays down, “So you got three options. You can stay here, leave with us, or you can say you'd rather go back to being dead and I pound you into mush.” At no point does sound as though stating anything but simple facts.

“My sisters are here, no?” Hyena smiles just slightly with this simple retort. “I've no reason to offer you a suicidal rebuttal.” Unlike last time, worth a small, rueful chuckle over. “Why would you want us to go with you?” she asks, entertaining her curiosity as much as the idea.

To this, as with many things, the muscle's preferred bodily action is another shrug. “More company on the road,” she answers, with no hints of anything deeper motivating the offer.

“You're simple-minded,” the purple-haired amputee observes. For good measure, she's quick to clarify, “Not that it's a bad thing.” Here in a slight lull are thoughts collected and considerations made. When they find themselves arrayed adequately, it is to Colonel that Hyena looks as her mouth finally opens. “... I'd rather stay and atone for what we did in service of the committee as we always did.”

Having finished her own musings on the matter, the bimbo settles upon the terms for this return to service. “If you do, you're starting from the lowest rank.” Understandable. Really, it's the least of punishments she could give; likely also the greatest, considering the recent depopulation.

“Oh well, time to go to that party then.” At once the refusal is brushed off by Adrian, who's now ready to get suitably smashed. Perhaps she'll have two full bottles of absinthe to make up for lost time.

Or perhaps yet still, there are things that first need tending to. “Wait a moment.” With this beseeching, the purple-haired girl does stop herself being carried to the truck. The point of doing so is to find out, “Did you revive the others?”
“Yes.” The muscle says as much automatically, without bothering to give it any thought; that would slow her getting to drink. When thought nonetheless applies itself for her, she has to clarify, “If you mean you three anyway.”

Thankfully for Adrian's liver, the resultant reply is a forceful, “Of course not. I mean the lieutenant and that girl, Pauline.” Nope, no effort has been expended trying to raise them. Let it be pretended this is not deliberate in the latter case. “There were surely others involved, but I care not for them.” Unsaid though it goes, this is quite the cold outlook for someone who chose death over a world without her sisters hours prior.

“I mean, I suppose it's still possible!” In a burst of cheer, the bird perched just above Hyena makes this claim. Just as quickly that cheer vanishes as she admits, “I don't know for sure. I don't do the necromancy.”

Some here do, such as the bartender, who asks the most pertinent question, indeed the only real question. “... Well, do we have their bits?” The tenaciousness of the undead truly is a marvel to behold. Though in some cases, it does flag.

“I mean... I probably could but everyone else is probably tired at this point.” Gazing upon the various inheritors and ex-necromancers, the muscle so presumes this flagging.

Rather than refute the idea, Rita ponders momentarily, reaching the most reasonable conclusion. “... It'd be good practice to try it solo.” And how right she is, with Adrian fully intent upon departing. There will be no assistance in her future.
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“You got a coin?” … Wait, what for? Surely she wouldn't just- “I was gonna flip to see which one to try.” Of course she would. Well, whoever isn't chosen will still have giblets around here somewhere after the muscle's recovered from the alcohol coma. When caught up to speed, the bartender has no qualms with passing over a rusted coin. “Heads we do... what's her name, the one with the drum, tails we do the other one.” With the metallic 'ting,' fate swirls much like the coin borne aloft, caught and revealed against the back of a hand. The verdict: tails. Fate itself wishes to be spared Pauline trying to provide music for the celebration. Setting aside Hyena, Adrian retrieves the scraps of the girl who named herself executioner. With Rita beside her, lessons begin anew, covering aspects left to others in prior work while a sustainable pace is set. Steadily, fate's chosen is recreated, bit by bit until she looks exactly as she did in unlife. While being given a congratulatory pat upon the back from her teacher, the muscle sets to shaking the executioner. However, “There ain't no fire...” Glaring at the particularly corpse-like corpse, the evident solution to this is to shake the lieutenant even harder.

Before that gets out of hand and starts damaging the body and its raw materials, the bartender stops this with a, “Whoa there. I guess it can't be helped.” Vigorous as the attempt may have been, it has done nothing to bring even a grim facsimile of life to the deceased.

“She not coming back?” If this consideration bothers Adrian, it's only because this attempt has put her that much further from unshackling herself from sobriety.
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From where she left off Rita continues, providing for her pupil placation, needed or not. “But don't worry, it's not your fault. I guess she didn't have the willpower. Or she just didn't want to come back. It happens sometimes.” These are the realities that must be dealt with – more by the discarded amputee, who asked for the girl's return. “I can tell you that it's not your fault because you did a superb job on the reconstruction part.” Proffering more than a pat, such is the praise given to the muscle: experience could not have prevented this.

“So can we just replace the one bits with the other girl's bits and try that?” Adrian's tongue ties itself just slightly as she speaks; is the strain of the work finally starting to show itself?

The bartender believes this could be so, looking her ceaseless student over. All the same, she doesn't stop her forcibly. “You still feelin' up for it?” she confirms instead, doubtful as it is. “We can stop if you're tired.” Such a suggestion is, truly, one which can only serve to embolden the muscle.

“Nah, I got this.” Supremely confident in this assertion, there shall be no backing down. Adrian can manage this, all alone, and come out the other side more than fine.

Not quite all alone, however. “Alright, then. So it's basically time for a swap. This is a bit different...” Again, the time for tutoring has arrived. Rita sets upon a spiel, detailing the subtle nuances of converting one body to another, contrasting this with the process of turning loose viscera into someone's form. In practice, it really doesn't seem terribly complex, but the way she tries to outline it, one would think she's delivering a precise mathematical formula. However convoluted the process is chalked up to be, fate is soon defied. The drummer Pauline is held in the muscle's hands without so much as a hitch. The perfect place to undergo a shaking.
“... Oh god, hwhat.” In a daze, the drummer returns to the realm of the dubiously living, flailing the limbs she was kindly provided. Her head twists and turns, trying to get any kind of bearing on the situation, jumping between a number of individuals present.

One of these is the bartender, who would be lying if she said she wasn't surprised that this particular girl returned. She watches the freakout with a dry, “Funny. You'd think the lieutenant would have the willpower to come back, not her.” Yet the panicked musician is the one now revived; let no drum between here and the bar survive, lest she ruin the upcoming party. One may assume, with her stock still stare, that Adrian means to assure the coming celebration will have no musical accompaniment – they may quit doing so when her eyes close and she topples backwards, Pauline still in hand. Altina has no such gripping constraint, able to dismount and land with aplomb before the final crash. Impressive as it is, Rita is more focused on the again prone form of the muscle, remarking only a disappointed, “... Wow, really?”

“W-why am I here, naked?” the drummer asks, awash in anxiety as she joins Adrian on the ground, held tight and going nowhere, no matter what attempts to extricate herself are made.

Stepping forward, the bimbo takes it upon herself to give a quick explanation. That being, “You're under arrest.” Given her lack of practical skills, it's little wonder she's offered less leniency.

“Surprisingly, not for your music.” Carla certainly wouldn't complain if that charge were added. But the matter of aiding Mariana's coup is slightly more grave.

Not that this stops Aida from suggesting, “Can we arrest her for her music too?” It's one thing from the music snob, but even the nine year old agrees the girl's drumming is worth jail time.
“I don't think being a mediocre musician is a crime.” With level tone and head, Hyena makes an attempt to defend Pauline – at least, from unjust incarceration. There is no defending her abilities.

Leaning over and staring at the girl being held by her girlfriend, the bird disagrees in her ever-smiling way. “I'm pretty sure there's a count or two of auditory assault to be made there somewhere.” This claim does nothing to stop the increasing likelihood that the drummer is about to cry, plainer upon her face with each passing second.

“Hey, don't be so mean ta 'er!” Hammerhead's attempts at forceful demands are, in all honesty, much diminished by her limbless position on the ground. “She had a bug in 'er!” Such a position does not fell facts, at least.

Irrelevant to punishment as it may be, Hyena finds it worthwhile to note, “That is also true of the lieutenant.” Let her memory survive untarnished, if she's not to be returned.

“... I guess I'll clear her of the treason charges for the time being.” Colonel sees reason, in light of these infestations. Also, the only survivor of the two is presently undergoing her own ordeal.

Within the grip of the slumbering muscle, Pauline bears witness to a yawn, learning quickly just how widely Adrian's mouth can open, more than convinced of how sharp the teeth within are. “G-get her away from me! I-I don't wanna die!” Panic can grant her no surge of adrenaline sufficient to even budge one of the arms locking her in place, and from outside is no aid rendered.

“Does cowardice count as willpower, Rita?” Hyena's curiosity is rewarded with a lackluster answer: kinda. It works well enough that the drummer returned; and it will continue to work as an alternative means of punishment, since she's going nowhere until the muscle's conscious again.
Altina has no practical assistance to give, but she can at least clear up a particular misconception gleefully. “We're not here to -kill- you, silly! We did that once already! No, no, you get to live.” For some reason, this doesn't confer peace upon Pauline, who seems to not even register this. The bomb looks at her increasingly quizzically then; Adrian's just sleeping, is there actually an issue?

“... Only problem here is...” Why yes, there is. It is the bartender that realizes it, watching how the drummer fails utterly to achieve any reprieve. “How do we carry her into the truck?” General lack of femininity does bring with it certain trials – the muscle very likely weighs as much as several individuals present combined.

Dispel all doubt, for it is Kuku who comes to the rescue, entirely sure she is the solution. “I can do it! I'm strong!” She needn't sit alone in such bold claims, for another backs her up just as quickly as she proposes the possibility.

“Kuku's strong! She can do it!” As she has faith in Allah, so too does Aida believe in the butcher. Not that she has the remotest idea how strong Kuku is, but vouching for the girl feels right. This is what one does on a date, and even she understands this instinctively – surely only the thickest of individuals could fail to. Only those same people could withstand the chickenmancer's strength, as she hefts Adrian above her head, to an impressed, “Ohhhhhh!” The bomb claps appreciatively at seeing this, well convinced by the display.

Enviously, the bimbo views this, brought to one particular thought. “... Maybe I should have her as a bodyguard instead.” Would that she could rid herself of those Chinese children. Unfortunately, it's all too obvious what this dream is.
“Nonsense, who would care for the farm then?” Rita returns Colonel to reality, reminding her that beheading will remain on the table indefinitely. It is a sure blow to morale. It is not, however, as bad as the muscle shifting in her sleep. Closer does she clutch the drummer, much akin to a teddy bear, inching the girl ever towards the razors that pass for teeth. Pauline’s mournful shout is long, drawn out, and not regarded as she and her unconscious captor are loaded onto some seats.

Aida takes the opportunity then to climb in herself; setting a chicken in her lap, one hand pets at it idly, while the other slides back into Kuku's own at the girl's return. In much the same way, the seating arrangements repeat once the dismembered torsos are set up front. So begins the long, uneventful drive back to the bar. During this period, Altina makes sure to peek in on the drummer occasionally; not out of concern for her, but rather to ensure the girl doesn't get any ideas just because she's been selected as a teddy bear. Pauline's mind presently cannot form an idea more complex than the desire to not die, leaving it an ultimately redundant act. The sun hangs high in the sky, burning the world with the heat of midday, when at last Lola's truck pulls in front of the bar, that she and all she's ferried may imbibe their way towards intoxication. Is it early to begin such a process? Doubtlessly. But this isn't going to be stopping anyone.

Unfortunately for the drummer, her own shot of liquid courage will be coming a bit late; she could already use one, all the more as the stop jostles her head into Adrian's jagged maw. “OH GOD OH GOD OH GOD-” Already consumed by panic, a more acutely creeping dread dredges itself up next, when the muscle's tongue sleepily licks her, roaming about its confines. “No no no no no no, why why why why why?”
Adrian can only snooze so long through this commotion, and so she spits the head out and dazedly sits up. “Pffft, huh, what?” There comes another lengthy noise of distress from Pauline, to which Adrian aptly asks, “What’s eating you?”

“YOU ARE.” Whine and scream alike are masterfully melded by the drummer, who remains a long way from calm, even with the worst of her predicament behind her.

“No I’m not,” the muscle counters, and, full credit, she doesn’t have a head in her mouth anymore, which renders her technically correct. Doesn't much raise Pauline's spirits.

Outside the truck, Rita disembarks with a sigh, and then she and the other grownups opt to unload the torsos to provide them with clothes and limbs alike. As for the driver, Lola’s had a long day. “I need a drink, like, right now,” she heaves, hopping out to make good on this.

Aida thinks that sounds pretty great, so she leaves the drummer to her fate, that the mediocre musician may keep having fun with the musclehead. The bomb drags Kuku out of the truck and towards the bar. “Drinks and chickens and dates! Lots of fun! Do you like Rita's special stuff, Kuku?” Jubilant words of assent fade as they join the others inside, where such delights are found.

“A drink would be good,” Adrian agrees as she watches the little girls exit the scene, and then she looks at Pauline once more. “Maybe a drink or two would calm your ass down.” There’s a muted sound of sadness from the smaller girl, but the muscle is nothing if not reassuring. “If I wanted to eat you or some shit I woulda just done that. Also if you try to play any music I'll eat your arms.” Maybe she's not quite reassuring.

The drummer, struck still by fear, stammers out, “… I- I won’t.” Not that she has any drums to beat in the first place. This gets a smile of approval from Adrian, but there’s another presence who is less considerate.
“And if you try to touch Adrian,” Altina announces, leaning down from the roof to peer upside-down through the window, “I’ll cut your arms off! And by touch her, I mean in ways I find inappropriate!”

Pauline takes this new, terribly grinning sight about as well as might be expected. “W-who are you even? W-why am I naked? Are you going to rape me?”

Adrian is a bit too alarmed by that last question to properly explain anything, but the bird is entirely too willing to take up that responsibility instead, cheerily smiling all the while as she goes down the list of questions in order, “Adrian’s girlfriend! You died and had to be put back together! And only if you want me to!” The drummer takes that last sentence about as well as can be expected when it’s uttered by a wide-eyed, eternally beaming loon of a white-haired girl, and immediately starts bawling her eyes out while Altina's unblinking gaze remains happily fixated on the sobbing girl's despair over her imminent loss of purity, even if the bird is quick to assure her that, “You don’t want me to. I don’t want you to want me to. It would be terrible for everyone.” None of this is soothing the panicking musician at all, of course.

“Uhhhh…” With this uncertain utterance, the muscle watches these events with genuine concern, perhaps realizing that there are some serious issues with her particular choice of romantic companion. “Altie, please think about your words.” Whether the bird will actually listen to this advice is up in the air, but for now, Adrian turns her attention to Pauline. “No one’s going to rape you, so please stop.” The most articulate response the drummer can manage is to whimper about her nudity. “Do you want to wear clothes made of meat?” the muscle asks, somewhat exasperated.

This offer is ignored, because it’s kind of gross; likewise, other concerns loom large, such as, “H-how did I get here… I was rehearsing…”
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“It is a long and violent story.” Brushing all aside thus, Altina sticks her hand through the window, patting Pauline's head.

Adrian is happy to explain, however, possessing a quick means by which to do so. “You got a bug in your head and there was a fight and I had to put you back together but then I was tired.” Eloquent? Not terribly. But assuredly efficient.

“And there it's summarized!” The bird's grin looks even more off-kilter upside down.

The drummer is silenced temporarily by these statements, until the dawning, “... Oh. I got bugged?” When the muscle gives her confirmation, she sniffles. “… I guess that explains everything. C-can I please wear something now?”

“Uhh, sure,” answers Adrian, and so she gets out of the truck, carrying Pauline along with her, happily accompanied by a pale bird free of any notions of tact, decency, or common sense.

By the time everyone’s inside, Rita is already done outfitting the three enforcers with clothes. They're a bit raggedy, but hey, beats being out there in the nip. They’re also surprised by Mwamba, who is working behind the counter and now wears a bowtie for some reason.

“Got one more,” Adrian says, before her gaze fixes on Mwamba. “… What’s with the bowtie?”

“… I’m the bar-person,” Mwamba explains.

“I thought Rita was?” Considering that Rita is right there, it’s a reasonable question for Adrian to ask.

Even if Rita isn’t the one to answer, the Colonel instead stepping up with, “I reassigned her here. Figured Rita needed a hand with all the clients she has now.”

Rita is somewhat abashed, but Adrian sets Pauline down in front of her before she can say much of note, so the bartender/necromancer/office lady proves the officer’s point as she hurries off to get something for the very embarrassed girl sitting there covering herself with her arms. At least Pauline’s former comrades in arms are willing to step up and provide support for her in these trying times.
“Relax, will ya?” Hydra asks. “We’re all girls.”

Disregarding Pauline’s stammering protest about this, Adrian adds a, “Also they were naked until a moment ago,” like that will actually make the drummer feel any better about her current state.

“It’s not that big of a deal,” Hyena agrees.

Hammerhead? “Ah don’t mind.” Well, all in favor, then.

“Also,” says the Colonel, ever a lover of attention, “I had to reassign the other girl, the really big one. Apparently, she guarded the water plant for two years straight.”

Mwamba may be serving small cannibal children delicious meat juice, but she can still make time to go, “That doesn't mean she did a good job, okay!”

Altina is happy to add, “Adrian beat her up. It was a good fight.”

Aida takes a sip of her drink, which is appreciably meaty. This is the good stuff. “Adrian totally beat her up! And then there weren't any bugs there.”

“There were, underneath,” Adrian corrects.

Mwamba is suddenly, inexplicably overcome with a surprise fit of racism, grumbling something about ‘damn Russians’ just as Rita makes her return with clothing to make Pauline feel slightly less horrible about life right now. “Speaking of Russians,” says the necromancer-lady, “are your friends coming?”

While Adrian responds with a simple negative, it’s Aida who’s ready to explain further. “The good Russians went back home! 'Cause they have one of those, they said.”

When Mwamba asks if the bomb means a certain uniformed pair, Aida confirms it, and is backed up by Adrian and Altina in turn. This gives the bartender enough to go on. “They were here a while ago. Just took a bottle of vodka and left.”

“Oh,” says a disappointed Adrian. “Damn. Coulda stuck around.”

“It would be sad if they didn’t have drinks,” Aida figures.

“Ah, well.” Altina is undisturbed. “They must be fine.”

Rita is an expert on such things. “It’s for the road, probably.”
So it must be for the Slavic friends the A-Team has made along the way. But for now, everyone else is in a bar, a place for festivities, which is why Adrian, done waiting around, asks, “Anyway, it's way past time to get started, so where's my vodka?”

If parties are going to happen shortly, Rita is nothing if not a responsible steward about such things, unlike certain other duties she may have abandoned in the past. “Similarly, I may ask, are you going to use the chickens? We still have eggs you left in the fridge, too.”

While those two hash out just how things are supposed to work, Aida takes another sip of meat juice and looks over at Kuku. “What else do people do on dates, anyway?”

“Uhhh…” The little chickenmancer has to think really hard on this for a few seconds before realization strikes. “I dunno! I thought you just held hands, kissed and went home.”

“Huh.” Aida feels like this isn’t nearly enough, but what would make this a proper date, even? “Oh! Oh, right! Riiiight! Adrian taught me something!” Now reminded of what she learned earlier in the courthouse, she jumps up onto her tiptoes to try and get at Kuku's lips and imitate what she saw then. She does a poor job. Fortunately for her, Kuku reciprocates, in a way; this is as awkward for her as it is for everyone else except Aida, immune to awkwardness because she has no idea what she's even doing, only that it's a date thing. Adrian stops chattering with Rita about meal preparations to stare at this, and Mwamba silently hands her a glass of vodka in the confusion, which she drinks without comment or complaint because she needs the drink more than the words. Altina claps, very prim and proper and polite, at little girls doing such things in public, no sign of disapproval anywhere on her ever-grinning mug.

“I take no responsibility,” Adrian says, taking but a moment to defend herself from accusations to come before she redoubles her attack on her bottle.
“You probably should,” Coach tells her regardless, and is thoroughly ignored.

The enforcers are stuck staring at this, baffled (for the most part), as Hammerhead goes “… What.”

“Don’t ask,” Hyena says. “I’ve no patience to explain.”

“That looks nice, can we do that?” Hammerhead asks instead, causing Adrian to sputter as she tries to suppress a laugh.

“Absolutely not,” says Hydra.

Rita and Carla share a look, a nod, and a shared muttering of ,“Youth,” at this whole display.

“I should not be entertained by this,” says the Colonel, unable to look away. “But I am.”

Mwamba concurs with a, “I understand the feeling.”

Once the bomb-chicken kiss is broken off, Aida turns to the curious enforcers and says, “You have to be on a date,” talking like she's an expert on this matter.

“This is truth she speaks,” Altina adds, because it’s too funny a situation not to back Aida up on.

“Whoa!” says Kuku. “That was a wowie! But what does it mean?”

Aida looks over at Kuku, and then shrugs, taking another sip at her drink. “I have no idea! But it's a date thing. Adrian said so.”

“No responsibility,” says Adrian, entirely focused on her alcohol even as Rita’s gaze bores into the back of her heads.

“… What have you been teaching these kids?” asks the necro-office-lady. “… Better yet, where did you learn this?”

Adrian is firm on her position of, “I will deny everything.”

“I won’t!” says the traitorous Altina. “Adrian kissed me that way after we killed a lot of bugged things at the courthouse. It was a bad time until she did that. Then it wasn't.”

“Oh,” says Rita, speechless, as the bird smiles the cheeky grin of someone spilling secrets a silently staring Adrian really would rather she didn’t, because she sees nothing wrong with this. Then she slaps Adrian’s shoulder. “You DOG! Niiiiiiiiiiice.”

With such approval given over proper first kisses, Adrian just grins at Rita as the happy bird bobs merrily in place.
“Oh! Oh!” says Aida, however, forever curious. “Maybe Adrian knows more about dates! Hey, Adrian! Tell me and Kuku more about what you do on dates, they seem fun!”

“Yeah!” Kuku agrees, before sipping on more meat.

Still grinning, Adrian just says, “I'll tell you when you're older.”

“But I wanna know nooooow!” Aida whines. “I'm on a date, it's super important!”

Adrian still refuses to answer, but Altina leans down instead, reaching out to bop Aida on the nose with a pale finger. “It’s a victory kiss, for when you’ve done a really good job. Which we did!”

“Ohhhh,” says the suddenly more comprehending bomb, even if this isn’t actually telling her anything new. “Well, Kuku did a really good job bringing everyone back!” Yeah, that settles it. She clearly deserves a round two, so Aida jumps on tiptoes again to start kissing the chickenmancer once more. Kuku gets entirely too engaged in this because she did a good job, apparently.

Watching all this, Pauline and the enforcers are united in what they need to wash the sight away. “… I need a drink,” mumbles the drummer.

“I need -several- drinks,” Hyena one-ups her with.

Basically everyone present agrees with such sentiments, as Mwamba is suddenly overloaded with work passing alcohol along to all, especially a bird who desires one of seemingly every variety of booze on tap. “...Can I drink on the job?” the harried bartender asks, tossing drinks around as Adrian grabs another bottle of vodka and gets to work cooking eggs and chicken alike, and while drinking during cooking may be irresponsible, eh, who cares, she won’t feel any accidental burns she may inflict on herself anyway.

“It’s your first day on the job,” say Rita, very considerately. “We’ll let it slide.” Carla points out that this never stopped Rita, though, earning a chiding, “Shhhhhhh, work ethics.”
As food is prepared and shared, and merriment through liberal consumption of alcohol is had, Aida eventually just starts swapping between handholding with drinking and what Adrian taught her, because that's about as far as her knowledge base gets before running dry. She has no idea if she's doing it right, but by Allah, she'll try. Allah himself, meanwhile, is probably like: ‘NO, WAIT, GODDAMMIT. THIS IS WHY WE NEED STONINGS.’

Amusing/terrible though the sight may be, Adrian has to at least try to dampen their mood with a, “You can stop.”

Aida does pause at that, looking up at the muscle to ask, “Are you supposed to stop? I thought you did because the date was over after we blew everything up.” Kuku comments that dates are complicated, to which Aida agreeably nods along with a, “Dates are really hard.”

“You stop -eventually-,” Adrian says. “Unless you’re alone.”

Suddenly, the muscle finds herself getting glares from quite a few girls in the room, especially Rita. “… What is that supposed to mean?”

“Okay, wrong choice of words,” Adrian admits. “Just stop.”

Aida is now looking at Adrian curiously. “Is there special date stuff you can do when alone?"

“I'll tell you when you're older,” says Adrian, unwilling to dig herself too much deeper.

“That is true,” adds Altina, for once not being so socially inept as to talk about completely inappropriate things in front of little girls. And so Aida stops with the questions because the date expert has told her to. But she doesn't look satisfied to be told she needs to grow older. She does go back to sipping her drink, but she whispers to Kuku, “We should totally go try being alone and see if we figure out any super secret date stuff.” Ah, the rambunctiousness of youth.
“I agree!” Kuku loudly responds to this wonderful idea. She's not the brightest. She sips mo' meat. Mo' meat, mo' problems. Aida also continues to drink. That surely did not mean agreeing to some secret plan, nope. Just drink. Adrian, with only herself to blame, isn't sure what Kuku's agreeing to – but she's entirely sure she doesn't want to be sober for it. Better pick up the pace again.

The enforcers serve as an excellent peanut gallery, meanwhile, Hammerhead turning to her sisters to go, “I don’t get it.”

“You’ll get it when you’re older,” Hyena says, hoping that’s enough.

Hydra has to chip in too. “You’re too young to be playing doctor. Stop asking questions.”

This is only fuel for more questions from the little dinosaur. “… What do doctors have to do with dating?”

“-Goddammit, Hydra,-” Hyena groans.

“… Shit,” Hydra says, realizing how she’s just given Hammerhead more ideas.

And Aida too, for that matter. “What -do- doctors have to do with dating? Can you have special doctor dates or something?”

“It’s nothing, please,” Hyena desperately says. “No further questions. Wait until you're older. Etcetera.”

Mwamba mumbles something about how it might have been smarter if she’d just stayed a guard, rather than having to deal with this kind of thing.

The Colonel merely shrugs, meanwhile. “Youth.”

“Youth!” Carla concurs.

“I’ll drink to that,” says Rita, lifting her glass. “Youth.”

“… Youth,” says Mwamba, busy again serving drinks to everyone present.

“Drinking!” Aida cheerily adds. “And youth!” She joins the toast, even if she’s not sure why, exactly, they’re toasting youth.

“Y-youth…” Pauline hesitantly chimes in. This is a mistake, as it draws attention to her from Hydra thinking she needs to loosen up and Carla thinking she needs to practice more, the drummer's only response another, “Buh.”

“Youth!” Altina chirps, raising a glass in each hand because toasts are enjoyable and so’s the drinking that follows. “I have it!”
Adrian maybe feels a bit awkward about what’s precipitated this toast, leaning over to Rita to whisper, “I'll make sure whatever else I do is out of sight of her.”

“Good girl,” Rita replies, as the festivities truly commence. “Smart girl.”

Drink flows freely, chicken and eggs are devoured by all, and a grand time is had – Adrian consumes more than her fair share with a very confusing mix of grace and brutish table manners, while Aida carves apart chunks of chicken and skewers them on her elongated nails in an astonishing display of bad table manners, and Altina daintily manages to make how she inhales food and drink alike somehow look elegant, or at least not boorish. And at least Kuku brought enough utensils embedded in her head to serve her own needs.

Time winds on, everyone positively drenching themselves in liquor (or meat juice, in two very important cases) – and long enough passes that Rita has had her share of drinks and then maybe a few more besides. “So,” begins the besotted necromancer, leaning towards an Adrian who is maybe more than slightly drunk, “what about those unholy powers and stuff?”

“What powers?” Adrian asks, midway through guzzling another bottle.

“... Mine,” says Rita. “Yours. Ours. Everyone's. Yannooooooo.”

Adrian looks at Rita uncomprehendingly. “Ish that an invitation?”

Necromantic blinking ensues at this question. “... What. Howdidja reach that conclusion?” Adrian takes another drink. “ARE YOU DRUNK?”

“No,” says the muscle, despite evidence to the contrary. “I'm jush in-ineb-inebbriation.”

“Well me neither…” Rita retorts, of drunkenness. But of course there’s other things on her mind. “I'm talking about the n... Nnnn-cromancer powers that be.”

Now Adrian gets it, with a, “Oh shhhhit, I can make dead.”

“Yeah, dude,” Rita cheerily tells her. “I just showed you how. ‘member?”

“Oh yeahhh,” Adrian says, finding such things entirely good to know. “How do I gotta thank you?”
Altina plops herself down in the seat next to Adrian, uninvited. “Of course she can make dead! Have you seen her muscles?” She pokes one of the slabs of meat in question. “Now making -alive- is a different thing. Alive dead. -Yes-.” Everyone here is presently a moron, apparently, for such is having too much to drink.

Aida looks around. Everyone's getting all weird again. She pokes at Kuku, and points at the door. Slowly, she creeps her way over, trying to sneak out unnoticed. Kuku follows unwittingly. Nobody notices, or if they do, they don’t care.

“Oyeah,” Rita says, meanwhile, at bird reminders about muscles. “You -are- pee strong. Butt. And that is a big butt. I’d rather have the magic to myself thankyouverymuch.”

“Nah…” Adrian responds. “I want some. You shaid I was good at itt...”

“Hyooare…” Rita agrees, however fucked her pronunciation is. “Butt they're gonna wanna touch your abs out there if you go out with those powers yannooooo.”

Adrian is undeterred, because, “I'll shtop'em like I shtop all the bad guys.” What makes a bad guy? “If they try to take mah abs they're bad.” Ah, of course.

“The broblem is not the bad guys,” Rita explains. “The broblem isd them other negroemancers. I know y'feel like hot shit with these powers but... I'm gonna be honest. These powers are shit. Shit shit shit. Compared to the other nicromancers I look like a toddler that can't wipe its own ass. I brought shame ta 'frica.”

What’s the best way to soothe someone in the depths of such self-loathing, Adrian? “It'sh ok, I think you look nice.”

“Wow,” says Rita in the face of such fantastic reassurance. “Thank you. You're a tru friend, yanno that?”

“yeh,” Adrian agrees, full of magnanimity.
“But dude.” Rita cannot be swayed from her original idea. “Dude. You're a doll, my dude. You're gonna go batshiiiiiiiiiiiiiit.” But, Adrian wonders, isn’t Rita a doll too? “Yeah but I know how to use that bullshiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit.” Maybe Adrian wouldn’t mind being shown how it all works, Rita? “I already did ya dumroll, ‘member?” Okay so Rita’s just being drunkenly uncooperative at this point.

“Show me moooore,” Adrian drunkenly demands.

“Like hwhat?” wonders the drunkenmancer.

Adrian tosses an arm around Rita, which is going far enough that Altina straightens up in her seat next to them to watch with extreme suspicion. “I dunno,” the muscle admits, heedless of the dangerous ground she’s treading on now.

Rita responds to this with an intelligent “Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. I can, like, make dead things move.”

“That shounds fuckin’ cool,” Adrian says, before taking another swig.

Rita puts her arm around Adrian as if they were bros. Sick. “I knooooooow, right? I made shkeleton dance once. Was fucken cool. But that's all they're good for, yanno? Skeletons can't fight worth shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit.” Really, Adrian wonders? “Yeah, man. They just, like, burst into lil bones.”

“You know so much shit,” Adrian marvels, before her inebriated mind wanders to asking, “What day ish it?”

“Fuaaaaaaaaaark," Rita groans. “I don't know. What does it matter?”

“I dunno,” says Adrian, “don't wizards and shit gotta do things on like certain days cause the moon makes'em strong or somethin’? Am I wizard or a witch?”

“Nawwwwwwwww, mang…” Rita is sure about this next part, at least. “You're thinkin' of demons.” As for the question of witchcraft or wizardry, silence, until, “You’re a girl, right?” Once Adrian, sloshed though she is, confirms it, “Then yous a witch, duh.”

“And I got these ta prove it,” Adrian says, drunkenly jerking a thumb at her chest.
“Can confirm,” says Altina, perhaps staring too intently at where that thumb’s pointed, “they prove it.”

“I don’t geddit,” Rita says.

Adrian explains that, “Boys don’t got these, dummy.”

“Your muzzles?” Rita asks, oblivious. “But they do too.”

“Not the musclesh, muh tits.” Oh, that explains everything, Adrian.

“… Y’got tits my dude?” Oh, apparently not to Rita. Is she blind as well as drunk?

“Hell yeah I do,” Adrian says, taking no small amount of offense.“You sayin’ I don’t?”

“Siiiiiiiiiiiick.” Well, at least Rita finds it a good thing. She checks under her own shirt too, for reasons only she can tell. “Oh, duh. I'm sho silly. Thinking I wasn't a girl for a sec."

“Can you use your fukkin magic to change that?” asks the drunkenly curious muscle.

Rita is, as ever, puzzled. “... What for, tho?”

“I dunno, to turn into a wizard?” Adrian looks a little confused after saying that. “But I thought wizards could be girls too… like in those books.” What books does Adrian mean? Eh, it hardly matters.

“Maaaaaaan, fuck that,” Rita declares. “I'd rather git a bigger rack." Then why didn’t she, Adrian must ask? The answer, well, “Boobs is hard… if you don’t mold them right they look fake as fuuuuuuuuuck.” Of course the curious muscle wonders if Rita tried it and figured out how to make it work. “Hells yeah. But doing it on yourself is fuckin impossible. I had ta practice on Carla.”

“Dude,” says Adrian, suddenly eager, “do mine.” Such a declaration leaves Altina silently watching all of this with crimson eyes just about on the verge of totally bugging out of their sockets, but nobody pays her any attention.

“But,” says Rita, heedless of the murderous energies emitting from the nearby albino, “what about your muzzles my dude?”

“What about’em?” Adrian asks.

“Uhhhh.” Rita needs a bit to think. “Cause. Yanno. Science and shit. Titty is fatty, muzzle is muscle. Y'can't have muscly tits.”
But I hash some fat because I got tits,” Adrian points out. “People gotta have some fat.”

Rita is astounded, flabbergasted, and many other such words. “... Dude, I thought bodybuildin' was bout having zero per cent body fat. You're blowin' my fuckin' mind my dude.”

“Dude,” Adrian responds, “I'm not a body builder, they don't do shit with their muscle. They just like... have'em ta have'em.”

“But how come you're riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiipped?” Rita has to know.

Unfortunately, all she gets from Adrian is, “I dunno, I work out a lot.” Murder keeps the body fit, after all.

“Shiiiiiiiiiit,” Rita continues to marvel. “I could make your titty bigger, sure.”

“Can ya do’em both?” Adrian asks. Altina raises a finger to interject. She pauses. The finger drops.

“Yeah, yeah, obviously,” Rita assures Adrian. “Pfffft, what am I, a fuckin idiot?”

“Man, I just gotta be shur ya know,” Adrian slurs. “Tits are important.”

“I knoooooooooooow,” Rita drawls. “Tits are life. Ass is hometown.”

“My ass is great,” Adrian proudly concurs.

Nobody has anything else to say about their necromancer and the most powerful necro-dude in the room discussing the merits of making bigger tits, for they’re all secluded to their own corners in chatter and general drunkard things. Altina absentmindedly motions for another drink as she watches this, leaning against the bar’s counter and resting her cheek on a fist. Mwamba serves her, of course, though she has to ask, “… You alright?”

“Yes, yes, just... very distracted.” Altina can't take her eyes off Adrian and Rita, but that won't stop her from taking her drink and downing it in one go. “I think I want to be further distracted. Another, please?”

“Distractions, coming right up.” Mwamba makes haste with the drinks, as the albino soothes any jealousy that may be raging through her and demanding she pounce on Rita to shred the nice lady to pieces, because the power of dousing such feelings in shitty alcohol is too strong to fight.
“So,” says Rita, as her and Adrian go over what to do. “More titty, but ass is okay?”

“My ass is fiiiiine,” Adrian says.

“Well, I believe you my dude.” If such is what the muscle desires to remain untouched, then the chest alone shall be what’s modified, so says the necromantic oath.

Adrian drains what's left of her current bottle. “So can ya like, do it now?” Hearing this drives Altina into overdrive with slamming drinks back.

“But ‘drian, I’mma drunk,” Rita protests.

“I thought ya said ya weren't?” says a confused muscle.

Rita looks likes she's about to cry. “I fuckin' lied! Again!”

There’s mild disappointment from Adrian in the form of, “Aw sheeeeeeit, why'd ya do that?”

“I wanted to 'mpress you, maaaan,” Rita whines. Even when Adrian reassures her she doesn’t have to do that, Rita just goes, “But then you won't give muh power back…”

Adrian sees no problems here, truly. “You can fuckin' do magic shit and make bigger tits, that's cool. Like the coolestshtest. But if ya can't do it drunks, then we gotta go to beds so we can do it. Beds are magic like that. You closh your eyesh in the bed then wake up and not drunk.”

“Oyeah,” says Rita, as wisdom is dispensed to her. “That oughta fix shit. Riiiiiiiiiiight.”

With agreement so given, Adrian takes Rita's hand and pulls her up and away, stumbling towards where Rita's bed should be. Altina slides off her seat and follows on wobbly legs, because this is something that cannot go unobserved in case she has to dispense punishment.

“Hokay,” says Rita, not resisting as she’s pulled along. “Ho. Now I sound like Huhu. KUKU. I mean Kuku.”
Adrian is so drunk she manages to stumble straight out the back door instead of into any bedroom, dragging a necromancer along and accompanied by a sloshed bird all the way. What they come across, as they all stagger out into the cool desert air, is the location of absentee bombs and chickenmancers, as Aida is discovered – and while the three older girls are incredibly drunk, nothing could prepare them to see Aida making out with Kuku once more. The position is a rather compromising one, with the bomb laying atop the butcher, though thankfully they remain clothed; how long this would have held, had they infinite time to experiment, is unknown. A matter left to imagination's whims.

“… Uh,” says Rita, as muscly and necromantic interlopers to the scene stare blankly at what’s going on at their feet, tag-along bird blinking rapidly and owlishly at the sight before her, which shows no signs of stopping while the two small girls remain completely oblivious to their observers.

Adrian looks at Aida, then at Rita, and says, "This isn't bed… This ish kidsh making out.”

“Fuuuuuuuuuuuuck, 'drian,” says Rita. “You brought us outside my dudearoo. How the fuaaaaark did you do that? Are you a witch?”

“Yeah dude, did you forget?” Adrian is no longer bothered by such distinctions as wizard or witch, apparently.

Altina cannot look away from what’s going on below her. “This is… this is several degrees of wrongness. Isn't it?” She ponders this. “Maybe not. Zombie laws. Hah.” Well, she’s not putting a stop to anything, clearly.

“Hello!” Kuku says, between bouts of inappropriate kissing. “I’m on a date!”

Adrian must put a stop to things where no one else will. “Ya gotta stop that, kid. Yer too young. Itsh time for bed.”

Rita gives Adrian a conflicted look at this advice. “... Isn't it gonna be worse in bed...???”

“Not if we're shleepin',” Adrian declares with confidence.

Rita can only go, “Oyeeeeeeeeah,” at such impeccable logic.
Aida, meanwhile, is now aware of a drunkenly slurring Adrian. She is not quite aware enough to jump at being caught. “Do we have to? We're having fun and... is there something special to do in beds on dates?”

“Awwwwwwwwwwww sheeeeeeeeeeeeeit,” says Rita, alarmed.

Adrian staggers over and picks up Aida, “No.”

Rita staggers over and picks up Kuku, “Naw.”

“Are you suuuuuuure?” Aida asks, still holding onto Kuku's hand as she's pulled away, perhaps to pull the girl with her.

“Shur as shur,” Adrian assures her.

Kuku has a question, silly though it is. “Are you guys drunk?”

“They always get weird like this,” Aida tells her.

“Nawwww,” says Adrian, “we just been drinkin." Flawless.

Rita? “What. No. Nonononononono. I'm sober as SHIT. WOO.”

Aida is unconvinced. “They should just have the meat stuff, it doesn't make you all weird.”

Altina sniffs haughtily at such talk. “I -enjoy- being all weird, thank you.”

Adrian ignores all of this. With a bomb in one hand, she grabs hold of Rita with her other to pull the older girl back inside and, hopefully, through the right door this time. Altina spins about on a heel to stumble back inside after them as they weave their way through the rest of the party, straight into Rita’s room, and collapse into lesbians on her bed. Some cases attempt to make this literal, but the day has been long and inane, and the comfort of a bed lulls all towards slumber, no matter the hour or the sun's position.

So ends session ten. With this, I bid all welcome, formally, to Gravel, for this utter nonsense is its quintessence, I would daresay. If you're still on the ride, strap in, we're going places. My associate may or may not be along to further steal the thread. I'll exist to answer questions, and am not a corpse from trying to get everything typed up this time. Have a nice thread, everyone.
>Who is this anyway?

As in who is Aida or who did the butchered body parts belong to?
The 'who' is an unconscious doll sitting in the front seat, the member of Triple-H that the party took with them after the fight with the bugcromancer. She got loaded in last session, so maybe I should have just included a reminder, considering how long it's been.
>he reality is simply that the muscle would go stir crazy within the week.
>This week, the one that hasn't even passed since arriving.

This immediate retroactive escalation makes me laugh for some reason.
At least Rita and Carla know that they sucked.
>“... How ethical is this?” the radio host is drawn to wonder, seeing the disparate pieces of the rebuilt girl laying around.

>From her shoulder perch, the observing avian remarks, “More ethical than leaving them dead, maybe? I don't pretend to know.” A bird's brain is hardly optimized for pondering morality.

I feel like Altina is summing up a lot of the A-team's approach to unlife so far in this statement.
Altina just screams "more issues and trauma than you can shake a stick at and is probably suppressing even more" it feels odd seeing and NPC actually creeped out by her for once.
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Rita being more than she let on made sense.
Carla being more than she let on genuinely surprised me.
I don't. I just saved it cause it looked neat.
Please tell me what it's from.
From a Absolutely amazing game Called Library of ruina, which is a sequel to another game called Lobotomy Corp.
the thing in your pic is call jester of Nihil belongs to a set of Magical Girl themed Monsters, and is basically the reason why they're monsters
Pic related is the Magical Girl of happiness
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and Now I'm going to post all of them as they kinda Vaguely fit Necronica's aesthetic
Magical of Courage
Her dress looks like it's made of cards from a whole bunch of different trading card games.
oh shit made a mistake that on is Justice not Courage
this on is Love

Did the GM have rules for necromancy written up or were they spitballing this?

Were they surprised when the party didn't give the power over?
>is basically the reason why they're monsters
What did she do?
>So ends session ten. With this, I bid all welcome, formally, to Gravel, for this utter nonsense is its quintessence, I would daresay. If you're still on the ride, strap in, we're going places.

About what fraction or percent into the game would you say we are?

That's one way to do an intro arc.
It's interesting seeing so much "learn by trial and error" going on with the necromancers in Africa.
It also conveniently allowed the party to be themselves without getting killed by pissing off someone a lot bigger than themselves early on.
well it's not Entirely His Fault, but each of the Magical Girls where Suffering from wrangling with their emotions and the Distraught Nihil(Nihilism) Decided to relieve their Pain of struggling by making them give in to their Negative Feelings turning them into Monsters.
however it seem the Servant of wrath/miagical Girl of Courage getting Betrayed by a close friend was the Tipping point that made Nihil do it
and here's the servant of wrath, she don't got much fanart as she only shows up in Library of ruina, and not both Library of ruina and Lobotomy Corp
non transformed servant of wrath
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Nothing says I Love you more, Like fusing your Flesh with Your Favorite Person
Because it worked. Thank you for confirming my joke is funny to at least one individual.

Pauline's just a girl, really. She isn't cut out for the insanity that is the doll life. Much less the A-Team's version of it. Much, much, much less whatever the fuck goes through Altina's head at any given moment.

You were actually missing a hint as far as Rita goes, too. We were told explicitly by the GM that we were getting favor for checking off the drink list at Rita's bar. Carla was completely left field though.

As far as I'm aware, he had a general idea of how it worked, but he didn't really nail down a ton of specifics until [redacted] happened. That got him to really codify and explain it in more detail than was used throughout most of the game. For being surprised though, I don't recall him expecting it to be given up. By that point, it was too late anyway; the necro-juice had already been pumped into Adrian.

The game ran for around about two years straight, with almost entirely weekly sessions. There were some other things, but essentially, I'd say we're probably about a tenth of the way into things in terms of numbered sessions. How much time and how many words will be required to cover those sessions relatively, I can't be sure. But I can be sure we're going to be here a long while. Especially since my partner and I aren't exactly sprinting.

Gravel had a pretty solid opening act, yeah. Definitely helped establish the tone and set the stage for what happened going forward. Pest control's a nice, humble origin story; everyone's gotta have that cellar full of rats they kill. Our cellar was just an entire African town.
Thread theme?

I've been meaning to play Lobotomy Corp for ages in prep for Library of Ruina but my backlog keeps expanding.
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What about becoming your favorite person?
I have like zero experience in running games, but I want to try the game and I'm one hundred percent sure the potential players in my group have played the sample scenario. What kind of scenario could I throw together in it's place?
First TPK ever.

Players had a blast and can't wait to play the next collection of dolls consigned to this hellhole that consumed their first party.

What kind of group do you have?

That will help determine what sort of story is appropriate.
Why is the colonel so stupid and why would anyone give her any sory of responsibility?
Everyone there besides the party seems to be at least SOME level of incompetent
I was going to say Lola seems competent.
then I remembered her incompetence is the entire reason the party ended up in Africa in the first place.

Kuku seems competent, just very limited in scope.
Very small friend group, three people. Two already had interest in the game and have some experience, the third just likes the setting vibe.

Ask them what sort of tone and themes they are in the mood for.
The A-team are presently minor characters in someone's playthrough of CKII that has been modded to hell and back.
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Stat us.
Reinforcement parts:
>animal ears
>animal legs
>King Fu
>Superior Katana

Skills or Skill-based parts:
>Lick Jowls
>Super Strength
Several AP, mobility boosters, and damage boosters, a good dismember part with a built in bonus on the to-hit roll, some hinders, hinder move, and a skill that lets them increase the APmcost of an enemy's action. And tactics to help them position eachother at the start of the fight.

This all looks pretty good.

Though it seems like they are short on supports and other ways to increase their odds of hitting.

Can you tell me what your thought process was when making these three and what I am missing or mistaken about?

If these are supposed to be savants, they're breaking the rules of the game as enemies are not supposed to have position skills or Instantaneous. They also don't have classes or positions. If they're a PC, that's a build that requires 50 favor and also begs the question of why the obvious samurai is not the samurai class.
I pretty much just took what was visible, combined it with Samurai memes, like the fast singlular strikes [instantaneous] or cool and refined demeanor [Court], and cobbled something together that fit and was also rules-legal. Most supports/hinders are really visually obvious so I didnt think to include them.
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So looking back in the logs more for this game, there was a bit more to it which might require context.

The two other members of the party are Nai, an Alice/Romanesque/Thanatos who has a kind heart and a penchant for putting people together, and Ivana, a Court/Gothic/Gothic who has a very high amount of stock placed in authority above her. There's been rumors flying around about the necromancer's daughter, the one destined to replace the necromancer. At least some have decided that this mythical figure must be Nai, though such an endeavor won't be easy as the necromancer is a madman who exist in everyone's head and believes everyone should suffer for crimes most can't even remember. To facilitate this penance, the necromancer has a demonstrable ability to mess with the heads of the dolls and even hijack their body for a time. So with a bit look at the logs, a bit less sleep deprivation, and a little more context, here's the rest it.

So after she stopped eating her own entrails, more out of consideration for her sisters than a satiated hunger. She did, however, offer what was left of her entrails to Ivana, who refused the partially eaten organs of her sister for some odd reason. Nine lets what's left plop onto the floor before they head into what used to be Nine's home when she was alive, a research facility where they turned children with psychic potential into useful tools for the state. The reason they're going in after the fight is in hopes of finding information and material useful in repairing the savant. Going back through a door the party had already been through, they find the headless body of a zombie that wasn't there before. It's holding pages of a book. The pages are from a book titled "Slime Mold Computing: the New Prometheus," but little else can be gleaned from it other than the myth of Prometheus. The group takes this as a hint that they should try to find this book.
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Heading further in they find more headless legionnaires, but they had managed to destroy many of the books in the building before their heads popped, though the book they were looking for is under a desk and escaped destruction, handy. Unfortunately, at that moment, Nai is overcome with a feeling of anguish and her blade tipped hands slice straight through the book and she finds herself saying "Don't...do not...touch that thing." Nai is overcome with guilt as she regains control of herself and seems to be remembering things that make no sense. Trying her best to make sense of anything, she asks what people did when someone died before necromancy was a thing. Nine was slightly perturbed to hear her sisters questioning why someone would be buried in those times.

Nine goes from mildly perturbed to perturbed when her sisters start saying things like "A copy just as good as the real thing?"

"No one would notice the difference."

"Like we care if they rot."

Nine's figures that this is the necromancer's doing, though that provides little comfort as she does what she can to keep up a brave front, pointing out that Nai would care. "Like they cared when you started eating yourself?" Nai says in his voice.

"They had more important things to worry about."

"What was it that Mother said? When a Gothic starts biting herself, there's no coming back?"

Nine hesitates before saying, "I'm not a gothic."

The voice stops coming from Nai and is now in Nine's head. WHAT ARE YOU, THEN, NINE? WOULD YOU LIKE TO KNOW? WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE WHERE YOU CAME FROM?"

Nine's face remains impassive, but her voice betrays her unease as she musters a response. "I-I'm Nine. I came from here..." Then Nine sees her own hand coming out of a hole in the floor and pulls the back cover of a book down. Nine tries to focus on what that would mean, trying to push His words out of her mind as Ivana recovers from the puppeteering, confused. Unfortunately, He's not done playing with Nai.
"Go on, then. Give her a big ol' hug. Tell the automaton how much you love her, until you forget about her again!" Nai raises her arms stiffly with a saccharine smile plastered on her face. Nine flinches away and then, with that saccharine smile still plastered on, Nai turns her claws on herself as Nine hears in her head, "YOU'RE NEXT, NINE! YOU'RE THE WEAKEST LINK!" Ivana leaps onto the Romanesque to try and stop any further self-harm as Nai finally comes back to her senses with her own blades stuck in her shoulder. Nai breaks down in tears as Ivana tries to comfort her. She apologizes and tries to reach out to Nine, but Nine's already looking away, not wanting the others to see her weakness. Just as they are about to move on, they hear their own voices coming from below. Those voices need to find the book.

Despite everything that's happened, they decide they need to head downstairs. As they search, they hear sobbing, and then voices.

"Nine? Sweetie, what's going on? Oh, my goodness! Don't do that!"
"Uh . . . I'm s-sorry! I c-can't help it! There's something wrong with me, Nai!"
"Oh, shit! Nai, do you remember what Mother said about Gothics biting themselves?"
"Quick! What did Mother do for the little one?"
"Board soaked in blood to suck on. There's got to be something... There, break that desk. Nine, you can have my blood."
"Oh, Sweetie! Why didn't you tell us before?"

Nine has a lot of experience in ignoring unseen voices and tries her best to put that experience to use by not showing any reaction, Ivana demonstrates significantly less experience with a "This is...eerie..." Nai is shaking as she pushes herself forward but does have enough sense to chastise Ivana, "Ivana...shh..." Then they round the corner and find an actual source.
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A trio of horribly deformed dolls built from mismatched parts but clearly built in the image of the party. The smallest one, an obvious copy of Nine, though one with the top half of their head replaced with machinery, hugs itself tightly. "I... I didn't want to bother anyone..."

"Sweetie! It wouldn't have been a bother. We love you!" says another, this one, a copy of Nai, with arms bristling with spikes and surgical blades. The third, a copy of Ivana with one hand replaced with a scissor begins to cut its wrist. "Just hold on a little longer, Nine."

"Don't cut yourself!" the Other Nine says, aghast. "Nine, this is what any Gothic would do for another," the other Ivana says. It takes a broken piece of wood from the debris and smears it with its own blood. "But I'm not a Gothic..."

"You're my sister, Nine. That's all that matters."

"... Why is he doing this?" Nine can't stand to look at the copies, pretending to keep herself busy looking for any other possible threat in the room as the copies pull themselves into a group hug.

Then the copies notice the originals and things immediately break down into a fight as the copies are certain that this is a trick by the necromancer. Nai can barely hide her disgust at the copies as the emotional outbursts of Nine's copy deeply disturbs the junk. The parties attempts to talk down the copies fail miserable and an unfortunate combat begins and ends in relatively short order with the copies being annihilated even as He taunts and roars in Nine's head.

That's a good enough point to end this as this has gone on surprisingly long and the initial query was how autocannibalism played into the game. Amusingly, due to the fight, and what came after, Nine's bout of autocannibalism is forgotten once more. This retelling doesn't really do justice to how well the GM pulled the scene and playing Nine would have been a lot more frustrating if the GM wasn't so good at playing with how the other PCs neglected her.
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>tfw I can't help but do friendly, or at least non hostile, Necromancers
Can't even play a bad guy straight during the zombie apocalypse. I dom't have a face for this feel.

Few ways to help with this:
-Play up the crazy/ham it up
-They have goals/ideals that are wholly incompatible with the party. There's not even any malice in how they go about it, it's just what has to be done.
-They are a literal force of nature/don't have much will of their own.
I've been working on a general-purpose mecha conversion that would also work for Eva. It's pretty much all mechanical changes (most of which involve overhauling the battle map), so you'd still have to refluff things as needed, but I could pastebin what I've got so far if you're interested.
There is a third party class called "samurai"?
What our GM did was have clear badguys for the party and the necromancer to face.

One was a megacorp called Oculus invading the shattered North American continent from Europe that then got pushed back east by, and is now fleeing north to get away from, a mute necromancer named Ba'al who is burning the whole continent down going from west to east and immolating every man, woman, child, doll, and necromancer along the way.

Oculus was retreating north into frozen wastes of what used to be northern Canada and bulldozed over us.

In the current game, which takes place in the past and over a thousand miles south the big bad is Ba'al and we're out to take out one of his superheavy units which is a giant mechanical deer skeletons that exhales firestorms, incindiary explosions, and burning tornadoes.

We are dolls belonging to a group of Necromancers trying to fight off Ba'al as his forces push into the Dallas-Fort Worth area of Texas.

Ba'al is a big mystery because he doesn't communicate, and neighter do his creations from what we can tell.

Were not sure which if any of our Necromancers are going to betray the rest and doom us all, or if they plan to sacrifice us.

From what we can tell they are on the FUNCTIONALLY MAD end of the crazy scale though so they may just be the ones clued in enough to actually take teamwork seriously.

I don't know what Ba'al's deal is but he seems pretty evil what with the indescriminate killing and destruction by immolation of everything he can get to.

No, well there probably is somewhere, but Thanatos has a clear leaning towards samurai tropes so it's weird to go for, say, Gothic over that.
Gothic is totally the other samurai class
See >>77278507
The hard part isn't really that I don't know what to do and more that I just don't enjoy kicking the puppy. I don't like it when *bad stuff* happens with no payout. I can't even pick the mean options in games like Fallout most of the time because I feel bad if I make Moira cry, and I generally can't stand it when characters get Bad Ends they don't deserve.
I'm worried my preferences are going to put me in a rut desu.

>The hard part isn't really that I don't know what to do and more that I just don't enjoy kicking the puppy. I don't like it when *bad stuff* happens with no payout.

The payout is what the players make happen, not you. Speaking as someone who has similar tendencies in video games, you gotta understand that your place is the one playing the Enclave or The Master or whatever, it's the players that make the decision whether or not to make that character cry. Find that pay off and catharsis in what your players accomplish, not what your NPCs do. Understanding and embracing this is what will make it a lot easier to play horrid bastards and terrible monsters because the payoff is in what the players do in their encounters with these things.
You know.
Having sun-sentient undead scream suddenly may be a good way to make things more unsettling.

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Sudden storytime!
>>77274206 # >>77274598 # More tokens plz.
>My associate may or may not be along to further steal the thread.

I hope they are.
savant's at a baseline level are only as strong as horrors and the parts you give them. right?
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I don't have all that many knocking around, but I do have some of the necromancer tokens from that same game.

Savants have locations the way a doll does whereas a horror only has one location. This changes the dynamics of Dismember and how really big attacks without special properties work.

But I'm not sure what you mean by baseline level.
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Kind of a quick n' dirty token for a friendly NPC
Mine is basically like the groups dog. She happily eats away at leftover meat and hangs around the girls.
The group uses her as basically a meat shield and honestly doesn't care about her nearly as much and would sacrifice her to save themselves but she hopefully will never face reality or her mind probably won't come back.
Was she a later addition to the party or has she been there from the beginning?
How long has your game been going?
>the group Holic/Gothic doesn't eat people
>the group Court/Baroque finds human meat almost irresistible
Though she might really hate the taste of an undead whose body was properly breaking down. All the meat she's eaten so far has basically been fresh.
If she has acess go fresh food maybe broadening her pallete would help take her mind off human meat.
Thankfully she does.
Now that I think of it, the gothic doesn't have a sense of hunger at all. Of the group, only my character does. IIRC the Gothic thought my character was faking having an actual appetite for a pretty long time.
Which movie is this?
a short music video by ghibli believe it or not
Yeah i came into the group a bit later. I been playing only a couple of months so I
am stil getting my head around it.
I rolled random all my stuff and ended up with a Gothic/Stacy Alice which has been interesting.
Be party seem to have a very narrow set of things they are good at.
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Is Cloudcity from StarWars: The Empire Strikes Back or Columbia from Bioshock: Infinite a better place to take inspiration for a Nechronica setting?
>The group uses her as basically a meat shield and honestly doesn't care about her nearly as much and would sacrifice her to save themselves but she hopefully will never face reality or her mind probably won't come back.
Her smile must be protected at all cost!
Cloud City, so long as you use the supplementary artbooks with all the weird monsters living in the gas clouds.
in my humble opinion laputa castle in the sky and the Nausicaa manga
on your mark is great too
>supplementary artbooks with all the weird monsters living in the gas clouds.

Link plz?
Long shot but anyone in or close to Tokyo time that has a game or would like to plan one? I don't intent to run it but can help organize etc.
>Players had a blast and can't wait to play the next collection of dolls consigned to this hellhole that consumed their first party.

How did you do this?
What tone of game is it and what is the plot?
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I was considering running a game set in Rapture since it the setting lends itself so well to Nechronica. Maybe even add Entombed homebrew for those players who want to play as Big Daddy.
Columbia has the mad science and zany alternate reality tech angle to play on, plus the super power sodas. It's arguably easier to make work just by the 'softer' nature of the setting.

Cloud City could also work, in that it's a compact space with nowhere to run, depending on where on Bespin you actually are. But you're going to have to do a bit more legwork to make it fit into Nechronica since we don't have a whole lot of info on it.

This is assuming you're going to be running in the actual settings and not just cribbing stuff for style points.
Why does you gothic have no taste or appetite?
Who are the rest of your party?

Which timezones is that in UTC?
What is storytime?
Is it an App?
Something something people telling the happening from their games in those threads. It is turning into a tradition here to post the story of your nech games and there are about 3 different stories being told through multiple nechronica threads here. >>77287867 is a good example about storytiming.
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Party is Gothic/Requiem/Baroque. IIRC the Gothic and Req both dip into Thanatos as their secondary (in fact the Gothic might main Thanatos but I can't recall just now).

Neither the Gothic or the Requiem have a sense of taste or hunger. In the Gothic's case I anticipate it's because her Necromancer liked to make her miserable and in the Requiem's case I assume it was left out as a matter of utility (it's been all but confirmed that each party member was crafted by someone else, though we haven't met any of them yet).

The Gothic still does hunt undead, though. She has a compulsive need to hunt and attack undead but instead of consuming them she tries to salvage particular parts from them, which she keeps in a basket. It's not... exactly clear what's done with them, but it's been heavily implied she has an obsession with rebuilding someone else and is collecting parts that closely resemble ones from that person.
The world wide web is pretty good.
I should have started using it sooner.
>e. >>77287867 # is a good example about storytiming.

It's very wordy, written by two different anonymous members of the same group, and had two very particular styles to it.

So it's not the most common example but it is an example.

It's also what I read while I'm commuting for 2 hours on the train both ways.
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>Nine feet tall
9'6 in heels
Couldn't find em, but the Star Wars General could probably get them for you right quick.
Current Party, our first game we're just solo-class.

Gothic-Automnaton 2M, 3E - Laser Beam, Steel Bones, Extra Arm, Heart, Gauntlet. Rip and Tear, Vile Repast, I am a Doll.

Junk-Thanatos 3A, 2M - Shovel, Boot Knife, Flamethrower, Limiter, ZombieBomb. Dead on Target. Queen of the Underworld. Lame Beast

Court-Romnanesque 5E - Embalming, Assassin Blade, Remote Attack, Armour Skin, Reflexes. Composure, Deranged Gears, Many Charms.

Goth just slams everything with fist for extra damage and dismember benefits, decent all rounder.
Junk aims to charge in and blow up with zombie bomb, which is flavoured as the fuel tank to her flamethrower.
Court slaps shit with remote attack and just tries to hinder/support whenever possible.
Biggest issue they found is trying to play around Junks Zombie-bomb since the other characters are fairly melee.

One thing we noticed but weren't keen on trying, does the Thanatos ability that you can automatically declare an attack to be a 6 combo with the ability to turn 6's into a location of your choice, because that seems rather overpowered if does.
that's good and all until You become better than that
Anon, it looks like you've slightly misunderstood chargen. You should have three skills each from classes. Even if you've pure classed.

I.e., as you laid them out: Baroque-Holic 5M - Heart, Animal Ears, Extra Head, Tail, Bone Spear. Mad Demon, Super Strength, Mutated Being, Carnage.

But to answer your question, yes. That's exactly how those would work together, and it is a solid combo with potential for savant bullying.

>One thing we noticed but weren't keen on trying, does the Thanatos ability that you can automatically declare an attack to be a 6 combo with the ability to turn 6's into a location of your choice, because that seems rather overpowered if does.

It does combo but it's not as strong as you think. The declaring to be a 6 only works once per turn so it's not as broken as you think. It's pretty easy to prepare for, just keep defends ready or don't put all the relevant stuff in one location in the event they pop that. It also is only a factor against savants. Instantaneous and Drama of Death is the real broken shit in that class.
What are these?
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Dr. Killinger and The Investors four high powered Psychadelic sent back in time to ensure humans invent slimemold nanomachines.

The investors decided to breath with their creator's original orders and decided to take over the world.

Does that make the investors dolls and Dr. Killinger a savant?
Ghibli stuff.

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