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/qst/ - Quests

Archive: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=SRW%20Quest

Last thread: >>3535095

Last thread, thanks to the help of Saki Rukino of the Golden Seven, as well as the Flip Flap girls, we have defeated an enormous alien Armada. We also foiled an infiltration attempt by the Independentists lead by... Lelouch Lamperouge?

Ah... my eyes. My fucking eyes. Why do they hurt so much? I should stop rubbing them, but I can't. Last night some weird shit leaked through them. Am I going blind? This sucks.

Well, you can't win them all. The operation had been a success. Many people had to be lied to, but that wasn't a problem. It was just par for the course. Obviously it really did suck when that idiot's wreckage turned out to be all blackened and burned. Just what the hell was he planning to do?

It had been a very close call, but thankfully they bought all of my lies. Now to get that shit on lock and on quarantine. We'll pretend it's the Von Neumann, and hell, it might as well really be. I need to keep scratching my eyes or I'll go crazy. That bitch's parting present, huh? Serves me right. Serves her right. Serves us right.

My assistant can't finish her work. She keeps bawling her eyes out. How am I supposed to finish this on my own? Fucking...! Ah, get a grip, get a grip! Me, her, everyone has to get a grip if we don't want to end up in front of a firing squad. My eyes, why do they hurt so much?

And I still have to falsify the reports about the laboratory! By the Gods, how am I even supposed to do something like that? Yeah, the inspectors will be fooled all right, because they're morons who wouldn't know science if it bit their ass and called them 'daddy'. But I must debrief everyone else and then actually tamper with the machines. I can't do it on my own!

I need to close them. Yeah, I will close them just for a bit. I won't fall asleep. Of course I won't, I am in such pain after all. I will just close my eyes for a second, and then...

and when he opened them again, he could see the girl pointing a gun at him.
He sighed. Of course it would come to this. After all, even the best laid plans go awry.
Still, a faint smile crept up his lips. "Oh? That's an interesting question you're asking."

"Oh? That's an interesting question you're asking," the professor replied, a strange smirk plastered on his face. "And how did you figure it out?"
"You brought it up yourself with Lamperouge or what's his face, and now you've just confirmed my suspicions."
"Ah, forsooth. I gave myself away, didn't I?" the man asked, simulating disappointment. "Guess the cat's out of the bag now."
"I am losing my partience, professor," you pressed him. "I want to know the truth already."
"Here's the thing, miss Dubois: no one but me at this base knows the truth. If you kill me, the information will go with me. Thus, I propose a bargain."
"I don't like bargaining with you."
"Yeah, me neither. But it's come to this. So, what will it be?"

With the gun still aimed at this chest, you nodded. It was worth hearing him out first, at least. Your breath was getting ragged. Was the adrenaline rush reaching paroxysm? The professor better started talking, before your nerves forced you to do something regrettable.
"You want to know about your brother? Fine by me. But you must do something for me first."
"And what would that be?"
"I want you to kill my wife."

>What? No! I don't even know who she is.
>Fine by me. I'll kill her.
>Hold up, this is too weird.
>Other [specify]
>Hold up, this is too weird.
We went for 0 to 100 real fast here. Explain please.
>Hold up, this is too weird.
Kinda slow today.
[Your alignment has shifted towards "Synthesis"]

"What kind of request is that?" you protested, irated. "Start speaking sense!"
"You're frustrated because things around you don't make sense. I'd rather discuss them somewhere else, if possible. And once you've completed your final task, you'll be free to go. You can kill me too, if you want. Let's just move for the time being."

The man attempted to move away, which prompted you to close the distance, gun still in hand.
"Promise. I give my word." And despite all his idiosyncrasies, Deucalion was a man of his word.

"Put the gun away, then. Or do you want to get arrested the second we step out of here?"
Reluctantly, you complied. That man had proved time and again just how dangerous he was. Staying alert was the least you could do. For that very reason, you opted to keep the gun hidden, but not out of reach.

"Good. Follow me," he said, tilting his head to the side as if telling you to get out. He stayed behind for a few seconds, locking the door from the outside, and then quickly took the lead. Rather than having you walk through endless corridors, he simply reached a console you'd never seen before and input a security code. A few seconds later, what looked like a concrete wall parted, revealing an hidden elevator.

"Ready to see just how deep the rabbit hole is?"
He was trying to scare you, of course, but something was telling you that he wasn't really bluffing. Stepping inside, you waited until the doors closed and it started moving, slowly descending for what felt like minutes.

A loud 'ping' announced your arrival. The environment around you was pitch black, but the place was oddly familiar. It was as if...
"Bingo," the man replied, as if reading your mind. "This is where you first appeared. Correct. Feeling nostalgic yet?"

"No, I am good. Let's go."
"Very well. It won't take too long, anyway. So, Carlotta, do you have a firmer grasp on Mirror Energy yet?"
"I would like to think I do, yes"

"Fantastic. I mean it. Alas, you've neglected to study the functioning of this world, and that's why we got to this point."
"What do you mean?" you asked, irritated.
"That you do not understand what humans are going through. See, we are not as technologically advanced as you might think we are. We suffered from stagnation for several thousand years. Only recently did that change."

"With the opening of the portals?"
"With the opening of the portals, yes. And who opened them?"
"The Flaming Skulls."
"Wrong. The Gurren Brigade did."

"What's the difference?"
"They're as different as a real thing and its knockoff. The Flaming Skulls are native to this universe, and use proxies. Of course, all proxies are fake. We've built them reverse-engineering the robots coming from other dimensions to the best of our capabilities. Sadly, most of them do not hold up."
"I think I get the gist. So what?"
"Allow me to return to the previous question: have you mastered Mirror Energy yet?"
"We already went over this."
"We did, but I was hoping you'd see what I am implying now."

You stopped dead in your tracks. The dampness of the air, the rhythmic noise made by a single drop of water hitting the ground again and again, the deep darkness. All felt unbearable, but what was even worse was the feeling taking over you. If Mirror Energy belonged to this world, then why had no one been able to harness it before that failed scientist? And if it did not, then...

Who -or what- was Noah Deucalion?

>You copied Mirror Energy!
>You stole Mirror Energy!
>You've blurred the line between real and fake!
>Other [specify]
>You've blurred the line between real and fake!
>You've blurred the line between real and fake!

Honestly, I have no idea.

Copy seems off as he said copies mostly do not hold up.
Stealing also seems off as Mirror energy is native to this universe so whats the point of stealing it?
[Your alignment has shifted towards 'Synthesis']

"Not exactly. For starters, we never possessed the technology to produce something like that just out of theoretical formulations. Instead, we had to look at the travelers from the new worlds had brought with them, and then elaborate our proposed practical applications on the basis of what already existed. Come," he invited you, resuming the walk. "Some of these rooms used to be located on our spaceship, you know. We transferred them after a certain incident. Anyway, the former laboratory is dead ahead."

Just a few meters ahead lied a dusty room, its door slightly ajar. Deucalion entered without reserve, turning on the light and then dusting off his glove-clad hands. The laboratory -or at least, that's what it looked like- was an eerie place. If you had to describe it with a word, it'd be 'retrofuturistic'- even though you were not sure it meant what you thought it meant.

"Ta-dah! Welcome to my humble abode, my pride and joy. Ah, Gods, the memories. Anyway, enough of this cheap sentimentalism. We're talking Mirror Energy here. We ascertained that someone like me could never come up with the idea myself. But then, where did it come from?"

You shrugged. How were you supposed to know? Still, you didn't want to give in that easily. "An unidentified 'real' robot without a pilot?"
"Close enough. The Gurren Brigade didn't come here for a pleasure trip. They came here seeking for the beast that ravaged their world, the so-called Anti-Spiral. You have seen one of their minions during the battle against the first Angel."
"The ASI?"

"The ASI. So we at the laboratory averted our gaze. We looked at the villains, not at the heroes. And we started thinking: what if we could harness their power, and turn it against them? What if we could crack the code and see what lies beyond? And so we experimented. Prof. Keter was the leader of our team. I am sure you've read his encyclopedia, but turns out he was an extremely talented astrophysicist too. And then there was Naamah Pyrrha."

Wandering through the room, the professor walked up to a desk covered in thick dust. Almost nothing was left over there, just a few machines in an obvious state of disrepair - and a picture in a frame. He blew air upon it and then tossed it to you. It was a portrait of an old man with his two young assitants. One of them was clearly Deucalion, his eyes dark and piercing, not yet concealed by the shaded glasses he was wearing. The other was a beautiful woman, of caramel complexion and with long, curly hair. "Your wife?", you inquired
He simply nodded.
"We did the maths, you know? Careful and complex calculations. We deduced that the Unified Power had to exist for every explanation to make sense at the same time, and that Mirror Energy was its closest approximation. We studied the ASI and replicated their patterns, thanks to Keter's expertise. And then we produced the robots. But I soon realized that I was the only sane one left. "

"Were your colleagues overworked?"
"Gods, I wish." He let out a bitter laugh, as if mocking himself. "They went mad. Keter went mad with fear once he met the Getter scientists. Said we had to destroy everything. Pyrrha, on the other hand, wanted more. She tried to become the Antispiral itself. Naturally, I had to kill them myself."

Having finished his explanation, he walked up to you and took back the picture, placing it where it used to be. "Well, that sort of backfired. And that's why I need your help."

>You told me nothing about my brother, though
>But isn't she already dead?
>Sounds like your problem, not mine
>Other [specify]
>But isn't she already dead?
[Your alignment has shifted towards 'Synthesis']
"Right, the woman you have already killed. Sounds easy enough."
"If only. That thing is alive. It is no longer a woman, perhaps it never was. Corrupted as she was with the power she sought, I doubt she..."

"Why?" you suddenly interrupted him. "Why do I have to do it? I never asked for this. Sure, I carried out my duty and I tried protecting my teammates. I put my life on the line day after day, and this was not the deal. The deal was that you would send me back! That's what I worked so hard for. I... I don't even think of my home that much anymore, because if I do, I know I'll give in. I know I'll retret into some sweet delusion and I'll stop facing tomorrow. But it's not like I forgot about the place where I belong. This is not part of our deal, Noah Deucalion!"

The man nodded. For the first time, his words sounded genuine.
"Then let's make another deal. Kill her for me, and I'll send you home right away. On top of whatever else we've agreed upon, of course. Know that this base won't survive if you refuse my offer, however. It might not matter to you but I, too, care a lot about the place where I belong."

You sighed. In the end, it again came down to fight whoever you were instructed to. The life of a soldier really did not suit you.
"Alright. If Pyrrha Naamah shows up, I will be the one to kill her."
"Not if. When," he promptly corrected you. "Or what did you think caused all those aliens to run away?"

Blood was draining for your face, and your heartbeat was increasing. Just what was he hinting at this time?
"Pyrrha and her army are coming. By now, she is one with the dark power she sought. The Meganoids confirmed that she is indeed approaching. We can't let her fulfill her objective. We must defeat her before the Gurren Brigade and the Flaming Skulls notice us, or we'll be deemed accomplishes and executed."

"We can't do that," you calmly stated. "We're too undermanned. There are only three pilots on this base."
"A fourth is coming. Not a correction officer, this time, so you should have a bit more room to maneuver. That's as much as I can do."
"How are we supposed to win like that? The odds are stacked against us so much it's not even funny."

"Well, how did you win the last time?"
"We took out the leader, and it was a miracle. Had we lost that gamble we would've been wiped out."
"Then take out the leader again. She doesn't have the same control over Mirror Energy as you do. I can promise you that.

Your mind couldn't afford lingering on the worst case scenario. Instead, it was already simulating the encounter, playing out its different outcomes. Enemy machines exploded upon destruction, releasing highly explosive confetti-like material. A few bad shots would've been enough to wipe out your entire team.
"Once again we have no choice. I'll tell the others and we'll try to come up with something. I don't have anything else to say," you concluded, tossing him your gun. Would he kill you with that? Perhaps. Perhaps, it would even be an act of mercy under certain perspectives.

The next two weeks were spent devising a plan with your team, or rather, what was left of it. Matheus and Lukasz helped you dig through every possible history book, military strategy manual and alien compendium to come up with a battle plan. Naturally, neither of them were told that the Von Neumann operated on the same energy fueling the enemy. Perhaps Joan was the only one who noticed, hence her seemingly unwarranted hostility. And what about Mark?

Dwelling on such questions was meaningless. The dead were dead, and they would not come back; you had to take care of the living.

>I am going to look for Lukasz
>I am going to look for Matheus
>I want to take another peek at the lab
>Other [specify]
>I want to take another peek at the lab
>I am going to look for Lukasz
No seriously is he okay. He had a pretty spectacular meltdown during the slumber party.
Rolled 2 (1d2)

>>3570695 (1)
>>3570744 (2)
tossing a die to break the tie
[Your alignment has shifted towards Synthesis]

Speaking of which, the first order of business was probably checking up on Lukasz Chtograd, the pilot of the Solarion. It felt like his state, both mental and physical, had been slowly eroding over the course of your stay. Naturally worried about that, you knocked on his door and receive an invitation to step in.

The enormous man was wearing glasses and reading a book at his desk. His room was unusually tidy, and he looked bizarrely intellectual.
"Oh, Carlotta. What can I do for you?"
"Nothing in particular, really. I just came here to make sure you were doing fine, and given that you are, perhaps I am bothering you."

"Nonsense! I am glad to see you. But shouldn't we heed for the hangar? Old man Deck said the new pilot was coming today."
"Is he? That's great. Shall I accompany you, then?"
"With pleasure," He responded, putting his glasses way.

Aparently, there was no scheduled time at which the guest was supposed to reach the base. Even so, you decided that you could've as well just gone to the hangar. If the pilot had really arrived, it would be beneficial to include him in whatever discussion concerning tactics. Furthermore, evidence in suffrage to their arrival was the apparent stream of personnel headed in your same direction.

Thus, you were not surprised to find a girl around your age in there. It was surprising, however, to which extent she seemed enamored with the Von Neumann. She was caressing it, leaning on it, placing her ear on it as if listening to something. What's more, she looked completely serious while she was absorbed in her task.

"Yes, yes, this one's good. It has a good heart, I can tell. A great power dwells in it," she remarked, seemingly finished with her examination of the Von Neumann. Next up was the Simulacrum, and with no one looking like they were gonna stop her, Father Matheus -who had just appeared on the scene- started trembling.
"Oh boy, do I have a bad feeling," he commented.

It seemed however that the Simulacrum too had passed its examination with flying colors. The unknown girl was extolling his pride and his courage, even though her repeated attempts at climbing over it made the priest clearly uncomfortable. His brow was sweaty, and his hands were still shaking. Patting his shoulder, you tried to encourage him.

Solarion was not that fortunate. The young woman was shocked and almost disgusted at her findings, for some reason.
"What is... what even is this robot? Is it Frankenstein? It's Frankenstein, isn't it? It has to be. So many... so many parts have been used to build this, like a real Frankenstein! Wow... It has so many different parts! Why though?"
"No shit, Sherlock," a nearby mechanic pointed out. "Of course a massive thing like that is full of parts."
Everyone laughed but you and the other pilots. Matheus was not that petty of a man, and Lukasz was probably offended. But you were actually curious: how did this girl of all people know about Frankenstein? Not that you knew a lot either, but it was surprising to hear such a reference coming from her.

"Alright, that's enough," Lukasz declared, breaking that uneasy stalemate. "You, what's your beef with my machine?"
"It's a Frankenstein!"
"You already said that and I still don't get it. Speak, woman. What's the problem with the Frankenstone?"
"It's Frankenstein. The Frankenstein needs a partner, or it will destroy its creator. Why have you not given it a partner?"
"Why don't you shut your whore face, huh?"

"I don't care for your insults, Chtograd. You're in danger, don't you understand?" she suddenly reprimanded him, in a sudden show of maturity, which left everyone astounded for a minute. "Chtograd, the Frankenstein is..."
"This is my choice. You have to respect it." In turn, it seemed like the colossal man had calmed down as well. "And it's called Solarion. Don't go naming it on your own."

>Alright, let's take a step back everyone
>Hey, newbie! Got a problem with my mate?
>Enough of this commotion. Introduce yourself, newcomer
>Other [specify]
>Alright, let's take a step back everyone
>>Alright, let's take a step back everyone
[Your alingment has shifted towards 'Synthesis']

[Social Background] "Ok, that's quite enough," you said, trying to defuse a situation. "Let's all take a step back. Lukasz, it seems like she was concerned for you. I am sure she didn't mean it as an insult. As for you, miss, please weigh your words. It's no mystery my teammate here perceived them as offensive, straightforward as you are."

She then composed herself and cleared her throat. "You do have a point, I guess. In the future, I'll try to keep that in mind. In any case, my name is Miroku Nagare. I am an Apostle of Getter, and I came here to save this base!" she proclaimed, proudly folding her arms over her chest. Her long, blonde disheveled hair coupled with her bright red scarf gave her a wild appearence, which certainly matched well with her overall attitude.

"We're very grateful for your support, miss Nagare. Now, if you would kindly follow us to the meeting room, we could start devising a strategy for..."
"No need. So long as we put out faith in Getter, we will be saved," Miroku sentenced, abruptly stopping the priest's speech. "Shame there's four of us, though. Three would have been a much better number. Or six, for that matter."

"As I am sure you've noticed, we're a bit short on manpower. That's why professor Deucalion called for you," you explained. It felt strange to be the one in charge of explanations, for once. If anything, however, it did testify to the fact that you had by now become a part of the team.

"Deucalion, eh?" Nagare continued, cocking her eyebrows. "Shrewd old fox. Keter did warn him that..."
"Ok, look, I couldn't give less of a shit. My legs are killing me, now my head is killing me too, and I want you out of this hangar. You can preach about Getton somewhere else," Lukasz complained.
"It's Getter," she corrected him.

"Well, how about you Get-the-fuck out?" he insisted, clearly pissed.
[Social Background]"I suppose we could move, what do you say, miss Nagare?" you proposed, trying to be diplomatic. "I am sure we can talk about this, uhmm... Getter somewhere else, no? That would benefit everyone."

Her hazel eyes moved to focus on you, and she smiled faintly.
"Oh, you're the pilot of the black thing, right? Yeah, I'll take you up on your offer. You seem to be a good person."
It was distressing that she had reached this conclusion just by examining your robot and not by actually talking with you, but then again, this was hardly the weirdest thing you witnessed since your arrival. Placing a hand on her back, you guided her out of the hangar, followed by your colleagues.

On your way out, you could feel some glances aimed at your direction. Some of them even looked outright hostile. Trying not to think too much about them, you redirected your attention to the newcomer and to how to best take care of her overflowing impulsivity. Miroku, on the other hand, looked like she had calmed down, and was now happily walking around the corridor. She looked like a little girl taking a sightseeing tour.

On the downside, a strange silence had befallen you. It was somewhat unnerving, as you could feel that there was still some unresolved tension. Mustering your courage, you decided to make an attempt at a conversation.

>Did you have a safe trip?
>Who sent you here?
>Is that a proxy or a real super robot you're riding?
>Other [specify]
>Did you have a safe trip?
>Who sent you here?
Rolled 1 (1d2)

>>3572477 (1)
>>3572554 (2)
We're gonna break ties the usual way
[Your alignment has shifted towards Synthesis]

"So, miss Nagare... How was the trip here?" you asked, trying to break the ice.
"Rather unremarkable, I would say. There's lots of detritus in the sector, however. Did you guys recently fight something big?"
"You could say that, yeah."

The conversation, however short, was distracting enough that, you did not notice that a corner was coming up, and upon turning it you bumped into Deucalion and his assistant, professor Isomäki. Thankfully, neither of them were hurt, but you still thought an apology was in order.

"I am sorry, I should've paid more attention."
"Don't worry about it. The same goes for us," the bespectacled man seraphically replied. "More importantly, could we borrow miss Nagare for a while? We'd like to debrief her."

The newcomer pilot took a few steps forward with a defiant expression on her face.
"Noah Deucalion. Was it you who killed..."
"Yeah, it was me. The old man was off his rocker after he met you guys, and my only regret was not killing him before he infected others with his stupidity. Any more questions?"

[Social Background] The professor's barefaced confession was something beyond surreal. It was the ultimate power move, or at least the biggest he had pulled so far. Strange as it might have been, he probably did the right thing. Miroku looked like the kind of girl who wouldn't tolerate vague answers or straight-up lies, so perhaps this was the best course of action.

As proof of that, she grinned and again folded her arm over chest.
"And you have the gall to admit it like that. Heh, tell you what, coming here might not have been a waste of time after all."
"Oh no, not at all. Thank you for accepting our invitation. So, will you follow us or...?
"Of course I will. I wanna hear the details," she replied, turning to look at you and the other pilots. "Well guys, I'll be seeing you later. Take care."

Casually waving and adjusting her scarf, she took her leave, following the duo of professors and winking at you.
"Well then, seems like bonding time is postponed," Matheus commented. "Lukasz, do you need some help to get to your room?"
"Yeah, I could use some assistance," he answered, looking rather dejected.
"Alright then, let's get you to bed. Carlotta, can you help us?"

"Ah, me? I am not sure, I don't think I can lift him or something."
"It's fine. I just need someone to lean on," the big man explained. "I'll try not to make it hurt."
It was hard to deny him, considering the state he was in, so you gave your assent and helped the priest escorting him to his bed.
"That girl sure is crazy," he pointed out as you marched on. "I admit I get a bit fired up when talking about the Mother of Machines, but the Apostles of Getter really do amp it up to 11"
"Those people are really dangerous. You saw how she was messing with my machine, didn't you?"
"How was that dangerous?" you inquired, befuddled. "She was just touching it."

"People who claim to commune with Getter do tend to go crazy. It's debatable whether they're faking it or not, but that's definitely a trait they all share. They tend to be brutally honest, too, and I leave it up to you whether that's a negative or a positive," Matheus explained. "Make no mistake, though: crazy or not, we need everyone we can spare."

>Are you speaking from experience?
>Lukasz, how are you holding up?
>Will we be able to make her come to her senses?
>other [specify]
>Lukasz, how are you holding up?
>Lukasz, how are you holding up?
I always think it's a little weird when SRWs have Getter Energy and Spiral Power in the same universe. Two green evolution-powered energy sources can't be a coincidence, right?
[Your alignment shifts towards Synthesis]

Matheus was telling the truth: the base was in no position to pick its allies. The incoming battle meant that everyone was necessary and no one was expendable. Speaking of which, it would probably be wise to check up on Lukasz.
"How are you holding up?" you asked him, worried.
"I am fine. I was fine, until that batshit girl started messing with my machine. I suppose the sudden burst of anger did not help. I just need some rest at this point. We should all rest."

"Good point," the priest replied. "We should all make sure to get plenty of sleep. You too, Carlotta."
"Very well then. Shall we reconvene tomorrow and take stock of the situation?" you proposed.
The two guys accepted, and apologized for not being able to join you for dinner that evening. Naturally, given the situation, it was perfectly understandable. Still, it was a bit saddening to eat all alone. Not even Miroku seemed to be around.

The following day, you were awaken much before usual. Someone had entered your room and was now shaking you up. It wasn't exactly surprising to see that it was Miroku, who was also staring at you with an eager look. You almost missed those days in which people would knock on your door.

"Ahem, miss Nagare, I am awake. You can stop shaking me up now."
"Ah, that's good. I heard everything from Noah. You're one crazy chick, do you know that?"
"I see, so this is the famous moment when the pot meets the kettle," you replied, staggering on your feet. "So? What's your reason for waking me up so early?"

"Isn't it obvious? I wanna learn more about the girl who harnessed Mirror Energy. After all, the two of us are gonna fight together, maybe even die together."
"Woah, woah woah. Easy there, sunshine. I have no intention to die."
"Death is a limit, a boundary. And Getter is to surpass all boundaries. So not even Death should be feared."

Her speech and attitude were starting to get on your nerves. Never mind how ominous she was, or how creepy her excitement was getting, all of this could be tolerable if not forgivable if she at least could use some proper manners.

"I don't even know what Getter is, though. Is it one of those weird things that everyone here worships? A god, or something?"
"Yes, exactly!" she exclaimed, clasping her hands together. "Except it's completely different."
"Then why did you say 'yes'?"

But your question was destined to go unheeded, as she just proceeded to extoll the virtues of her object of worship.
"Unlike those fake fetishes, Getter is real. It's the energy guiding humanity ahead on the road of evolution. It's the spirit of curiosity that dwells in every soul. We and Getter are the same, so it's only natural that we bet on each other. As such! We must cross every boundary and break every barrier!"
Her way of presenting her beliefs was surely captivating. Had she lived under different circumstances, you thought she could've been a fine politician. Still, she was probably doing a fine job as a preacher. You did not much care for her speech, yet it wasn't hard to imagine hoards of people captivated by her rhetoric.

"That's great and all," you observed, "But it's not my cup of tea, really. I got decently skilled at harnessing Mirror Energy though."
"Oh, yes, that's fantastic! Getter must surely be pleased with that. After all, the mirror is a barrier in itself too."
"Is it?" you asked, perplexed. You were half-expecting her to be mad about it.

"Naturally. The mirror is the most terrifying thing humanity invented. It's the source of all despair. The man who looks into the mirror looks into himself, and has to come to terms with the picture he sees in front of him. He has to face his darkest friend, and realize it's alwasy been a part of himself. Can you do that, Carlotta Dubois? Can you?"

"How do you..." You stopped partway. It wasn't the moment to ask stupid questions. "I don't know."
"Then figure it out. For you'll be facing the largest mirror of them all."
"Are you referring to...?"

She wordlessly nodded, confirming all your fears. If the Von Neumann and Pyrrha operated on the same principles, then you just had to learn more about it.

>What do you know about the enemy?
>What are our odds of winning?
How do you know so much about me?
>Other [specify]

It's weird for the people living there, too. That's why Unified Power Theory exists.
>How do you know so much about me?
>What do you know about the enemy?
Rolled 1 (1d2)

>>3574311 (1)
>>3574910 (2)
[Your alingnment has shifted towards Heritage]

Hold on, this was cause for more than just a little bit of concern. Just where did all this information come from?
"You must've talked at length with the scientists yesterday, I take it."
"With the scientists, yes. And with Getter. And with your robot. A lot of untapped potential still lies within you," she responded, putting a hand on your shoulder.

"I don't understand. And I don't like this."
"I know," she nodded, still smiling. "But this is your trial. If you're worthy, you'll pass it. And I have no doubt that you're worthy."
"Thank you. That's... really nice of you."

"Well, that about settles it," Miroku declared, her chest puffing with pride. "Now it's time to grab breakfast and discuss strategy."
"You didn't look like you were up for it yesterday," you objected.
"Oh, I am up for it now."

And with that, the conversation was over. Grabbing you by the wrist, she dragged you out the moment you were done changing, in spite of any protest or argument such as 'I can get there on my own.' It really was true, then, that Getter pilots were either mad or really good actors.

Not just the other pilots, but the rest of the staff was also understandably surprised to see the two of you get to the cafeteria and then sit together at the pilot's table.
"Good morning, comrades!" she greeted them in an impeccable roister fashion.
"Hey guys," you echoed her, with much less enthusiasm.
"Stay sit, Carlotta, I am going to fetch you some food!" she decided, before quickly rushing to the counter.

Naturally, both Matheus and Lukasz were looking at you puzzled.
"Did something happen?" they then timidly asked.
"Ah, beats me. She was like that when I woke," you replied.

Something felt out of place, however. It's as if the atmosphere in the dining hall had suddenly turned darker and more ominous. In a second, you realized that people were no longer talking among each other. Instead, they were secretively whispering. Unsettling as it was, you convinced yourself that at least it had a logical explanation and that it was nothing worth fretting over.

But that was not to be. You realized that when food violently impacted your face, wetting it and soiling your clothes.
"Is that so?" Miroku asked, getting in a fighting stance. "Then who will protect you?"
"SHE'S NEVER PROTECTED US! SHE'S ONLY PROTECTED HERSELF! WE NEVER FACTORED INTO IT!" he retorted, having reached the point of hysteria.
The other pilots also got up, ready to fight. It looked like a brawl was about to erupt, when professor Deucalion boldly stepped in.

"Return to your meal, folks, there's nothing to see here!" he ordered. "Those involved in the incident. Follow me."
Professor Isomäki was standing just slightly behind him, and motioned both the pilots and the nervous man to follow. The poor sod sobbed all the way to the scientist's office, where it looked like an interrogation would be held.

"I didn't mean to do that, please forgive me..." he kept whining, and you were not sure who he was apologizing to. As for you, you didn't think it was that big of a deal, but it was debateble whether or not he was addressing you with his pleas.

>Deucalion can handle this
>Tell the man to grow a spine
>Let bygones be bygones
>Other [specify]
>Other [specify]
>"While it is true that I originally fought solely to protect myself, I'd like to say that I've made at least few friends, like Matheus and Lukasz here. Furthermore, I've spent the last several weeks working with you to make sure we all get out of here alive. I'd like to continue to do so with all of your help, if you are willing to lend it."

Huh, the guy is definitely under the influence of something, but it seems like there has been some kind of resentment building up that we haven't really seen yet. I'd just like to nip that in the bud, or at least get a bandaid on it while we can.

If I'm misreading the situation too much or if it will just make things worse, then just go with:
>Let bygones be bygones
>Let bygones be bygones
>>Tell the man to grow a spine
[Your alignment has shifted towards Synthesis]

Either way, it probably made sense to reassure him.
[Social Background] "While it is true that I originally fought solely to protect myself, I'd like to say that I've made at least a few friends, like Matheus and Lukasz here. Furthermore, I've spent the last several weeks working with you to make sure we all get out of here alive. I'd like to continue to do so with all of your help, if you are willing to lend it. So stop apologizing, ok? Let's all work together," you proposed amicably.

"WHO THE FUCK CARES ABOUT YOU!" he violently snapped. "I HAVE HAD IT WITH YOU AND WITH ALL THE TROUBLES YOU BROUGHT US! THE ONLY PERSON I OWE SOMETHING TO IS PROFESSOR DEUCALION!" He kneeled in front him, and started crying uncontrollably. It was really a sad scene to behold.

"See, I can understand breaking under pressure. I do," the scientist explained, standing up from his chair. "But you've severely compromised the morale of the staff members, not to mention that of the pilots. Feel free to hate them to your heart's content - but don't interfere with their operations again. Understood?"

He said this with a smile plastered on his face, as he helped the other man stand up. He gave him a hug, and then sent him on his way. As soon as the weeping guy left, Deucalion nodded to his assistant, as if telling her to follow him. Before leaving, however, she turned around to face him.

"Before I go - I want this to be clear. And I am glad this happened, or I would've probably never gotten this off my chest. I hate you too, Carlotta. I hate you more than anyone else ever could, on this base or elsewhere. Rest assured, I will never cause you any harm. But you're the source of all of my misery. As such, I will never truly stop hating you." Having said that, she excused herself out of the room. Her expression was something profoundly sinister, like that of an executioner.

[Social Background] Something about her confession felt insincere. As if she was forcing her one-sided hatred on you, just to make sense of her pain. It wasn't the first time you witnessed that, humans always needed a way to cope with unwanted circumstances. All that was left to figure out, then, were her circumstances and her real feelings. That was something you felt you absolutely had to do, hopefully on a later date.

"Since we're here, we might as well hold the strategic reunion," Matheus proposed. "Or do you guys prefer the Round Table?"
Everyone unanimously decided to proceed, and so the meeting was called. The topics discussed ranged from possible strategies to the specifics of each model being deployed, mostly for the benefit of miss Nagare.
"The real discriminant," Deucalion explained, "Is how many ASI units Pyrrha has been capable of creating. We know that their concentration should be relatively modest, or we'd have some illustrious guests knocking on our door as well. The problem is, relatively modest can mean anything in the range from a few hundred to several hundred thousands."

"We would need an hyper weapon to wipe them all out," Matheus lamented. "We barely have enough to keep ourselves alive."
"Do we have no planetary defense system? Long-range orbital cannons? Anything at all?" Miroku asked, scratching her head.
"Nothing of the sorts, unfortunately. Even our spaceship has limited battle capability," Lukasz replied, dispirited.

>What about Getter, then?
>We should just rely on teamwork, just like we've done up until this point.
>Would fleeing be impossible?
>Other [specify]
>>We should just rely on teamwork, just like we've done up until this point.
>>We should just rely on teamwork, just like we've done up until this point.
[Your alignment has shifted towards Synthesis]

"We may be at a disadvantage during this battle. Probably the biggest we've faced yet. But haven't we overcome all of our hurdles through teamwork?" you remarked.
"No, we won them thanks to the power of the Von Neumann. This much is a fact," Lukasz retorted.
"That may be so. But whichever trump card the Von Neumann dealt me, I could only play it thanks to your help and support. All the flashy stuff comes afterward. So let's be each other's last resort, once again."

The meeting ended on that note, and no one really wanted to go back and grab a bite. Miroku, on the other hand, had no intention to let you be. She followed you to the hangar when you went there to train and run some simulations, she insisted on having a virtual sparring match and complimented you on your performance, and finally she took care of the maintenance on the Von Neumann together with you.

The only moment of resting for the day came when night fell, and everyone went to sleep. At least you hoped so - the Gods knew that she had somehow gained free access to your room, one way or another. And yet, the person who disturbed your sleep that night wasn't the new girl. It was Deucalion.

"Couldn't this have waited tomorrow, professor?" you asked, rubbing your eyes.
"It can't. Tomorrow we're moving out. All the robots are being loaded on the spaceship. I needed to talk about this privately."
"Doesn't the ship have a name, now that I think of it?"
"We never gave it one because we rarely used it. Back when Keter and Pyrrha were around, however, we called it the Ark. Why do you ask?"

You shrugged. "I don't know. I suppose it feels weird to call it just 'the spaceship' when everything else has a name."
"I understand. Unfortunately we're not at leisure to discuss naming issues. What we'll be facing out there is the real deal."
"How is it different this time? How is it 'more real'?"
"Because your sanity will be a stake," he explained, taking a dramatic pause. "Pyrrha is... trying to become an Antispiral."

"I already know that. What's your point?"
"That man who tossed food at you was wrong. Antispiral is not just an entity. It's a species. A collective consciousness. Whoever tried to usurp their power becomes overwhelmed in turn. What's worse, they think they're acting out of their own volition. That's what happened to Naamah, and sad truth is that we don't know why she's coming this way. What's more, this will happen to you too, if you're careless."

Having your ego annihilated was a terrifying prospect. It was even worse than death, if possible.
"Thank you for warning me about that. What should I do?"
"Keep your wits about you. Have faith in your comrades. And have some faith in yourself, too," he replied, getting up and heading for the door. "Rest well now. We'll be starting early tomorrow."

Needless to say, falling asleep proved to be extremely difficult. Nightmares, anxiety, and excitement were haunting your mind, making it near impossible to find respite and forcing you awake when your consciousness started drifting. Your final hopes of getting some rest were dashed by the dynamic entry of Miroku Nagare, looking as sharp as ever.

"Do you ever get tired or worned out?" you responded to her energetic greeting. She looked like she'd just returned from a trip to the spa.
"Of course I do, and that's what sleeping is for. Come on Carlotta, this is a great day for us!"
"Is it? I was under the impression that we were going to fight a terrible battle."
"It won't be terrible, it will be glorious! After all, the Getter Messiah is on our side!"
"Getter Messiah? Is that one of your friends?"
"Don't be ridiculous, Carlotta! YOU are the Getter Messiah!"

>I knew it, you're crazy
>And what exactly makes you think that?
>It does sound kinda cool.
>Other [specify]
>>And what exactly makes you think that?
>And what exactly makes you think that?
>>It does sound kinda cool.
Continues on >>3579431

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