Futuropolis

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LoopyPanda

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cyberia cafe
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WELCOME TO FUTUROPOLIS!
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[size=medium][size=large]ABOUT[/size][/size]​
Futuropolis is the one of the most technologically advanced cities in Empire State (arguably all of Booga)! The megalopolis houses many skyscrapers, home to the region's most innovative companies and people. What historically was a city of plain, ordinary people has grown into a hub where creative minds come together. It's this identity of creation and innovation that has truly left its mark. Hundreds of themed restaurants, shopping mega-malls, and clubs offer a plethora of choices for entertainment and dining. Those who feel hungry for something else can enjoy tours of robotics, fashion and art shows, sightseeing or one of the many other recreational venues.​

Venues of Interest
  • Waystar Corporation HQ: This serves as the landmark for one of the largest skyscrapers of the city. Many well-respected scholars in the scientific fields come here and collaborate on the latest projects underway. It's not typically open to the general public or mass media coverage in order to keep projects a secret from outside competitors. The HQ does have a floor solely for press conferences and public reveals, so occasionally, they will allow outsiders to enter on these event days. Sometimes they will recruit bright minds that have no funds to put their innovation to fruition. It is rumored that this is also home to a laboratory working on pilotable robots as a combative countermeasure to threats even the Heroes Organization cannot handle. Waystar Labs declines to comment when confronted about these rumors.
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[align=center]The Entertainment District
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Photo by Ethan Redd
Hotel Strano: A hotel that is 'manned' exclusively by robots! Taking pride in efficient services and reduction of costs, a stay at this hi-tech hotel is actually far cheaper than a typical five-star resort. Instead of a typical hotel being run by humans, the workers are actually all cyborgs and androids programmed to make your stay at Futuropolis as comfortable as possible. Some are simple autonomous machines that cart your luggage off to your room for you, while others are humanoids that can easily arrange a nutritious meal for room service and call a cab for you to head to your next destination. Hotel Strano's mascot is a cartoonified sun named Sunny, who also is found in each room in the form of a small desk lamp that can answer questions such as the time and the forecast, as well as operating certain functions of the room itself (Air conditioning and lights). If requested, she will also transcribe breaking news from around the globe. She can do most anything you ask without moving from her spot.
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Zero Gravity Square: A shopping supercenter with innumerable shops of all kinds to choose from. If you get hungry, there are restaurants on every corner as well! There's nothing you can't find. The sidewalks are also mechanized, so you don't even need to walk all the way down the long streets to your favorite clothing retailer! The walk to the parking lot is a different story, however...[/align]
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Popular spots:
  • The Lunar Shuttle: A particularly popular restaurant with a space and extraterrestrial theme. Its reviews are overwhelmingly positive, but the pricing ranges from fair to somewhat expensive depending on the choice of entree. Its food also has a focus on space-themed things. The building is shaped like a rocket shuttle-- you can't miss it!
  • Mecha Flamingo: A booming night club that also has a casino; called the oasis of the concrete jungle.
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As safe as Futuropolis may be, the casino is speculated to be where criminals gather and make discreet transactions between each other. Bosses from Los Demonios may also lurk in the shadows, for their grunts are the ones out doing the dirty work for them while they maintain an invisible identity. For your own safety, it's advised you don't cheat playing poker.
These criminals in particular are of higher-class, tech-savvy, and have better street smarts than your average Demonian ruffian, making them more dangerous. But they are generally not interested in harming civilians with robots all around the city as a deterrent, so they fly under the radar rather easily.[/align]
 
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In several locations portals of black and blue energy opened up across Futuropolis, the distinctive portals utilized by the Meeting of the Dark’s mass transit system. Though capable of traveling long distances, they had the drawback of being a bit imprecise, thus all appearing scattered and random. Out of each portal, an unmarked and armored van emerged, numbering 7 in total. Each van was carrying a team of Meeting Soldiers, equipped with high issue gear and modified with dark powers that augmented them, several cases of various pieces of equipment, and a single or pair of ambassadors from the seven major guilds across Booga: The Meeting of the Dark, the Heroes Organization, the Brotherhood of Black Magic, the Sisterhood of White Magic, the Clan of Swords, the Crescent Hunters Guild, and the Beyonders. Each of the ambassadors had been picked up and briefed by the Meeting Operative currently sitting shotgun in the van, explaining the stakes or refreshing them. An alien threat was on it’s way to Booga, and unless measures were taken, he would destroy all life on the planet.

Sitting in the Meeting’s van was a particularly skilled Operative, one of the best among the Meeting’s ladder. Sitting in the van, he reached for a bottle of wine in a bucket of ice.
“Suyoi have mercy upon me, for my Leader shall have none.” He stated to the other people in the van, before looking to the driver. “Did the other vans arrive in the city?” He asked.

“Calling in all Meeting vans, are you present in the target city? Over.” The driver asked, to be met with 6 cases of “Roger.” This amused the Operative, who leaned back in his seat and chuckled.

“At least I’m not dying today.”

Though this accord was to protect Booga, the accord itself needed protection. The Meeting was paranoid about people with the hatred and means needed to attack a country would use this chance to try and destroy any chance of unity of purpose the guilds had, and as a result took extra precautions. The vans themselves were armored against attack, but inside each was a team of four soldiers outfitted with the best guns and the best modifications the Meeting has developed. Although obvious these soldiers had never yet seen combat on this expected level, the hope was enough quality could beat any attacker’s skill. Not to mention that each ambassador had an Operative with them, worth more than a team of these soldiers combined, that would give their life for their protection.

The van containing the Operative made a turn, pulling onto a street in view of a smaller office building with all the lights off. The radio within the van went off.

“We see your approach towards the location, you are visually guarded.” The radio stated.

“Thank you, we confirm that your invisibility mask is functioning, you are unseen.” The driver replied. The ambassadors had been assured a team of snipers would take positions in the area to act as the first line of defense.

The vans all pulled into the back of the building, descending through a parking two levels lower. There, the vans were stopped. The Meeting Soldiers opened up the vans and grabbed the cases of equipment, heading out and heading into a room within the parking lot, a large storage room of concrete that had been emptied. There, the Meeting Soldiers put down the cases and pulled out the equipment, quickly setting up a conference room, along with various recording methods, including: video, an auto-transcriber, and a plain voice recorder. Seven copies of each, one for each guild.

The Operative stepped out of the van, a figured dressed in a black suit. An unnatural pale skin on a feminine figure, highlighted by saturated, vibrant red arteries shining through the skin. Wearing a white mask with red makeup applied, it was obvious she was trying to hide a questionable appearance for the sake of being a diplomat. Following her Soldiers into the room, the Operative pulled out sheets of paper and sat down at the foot of the table, rather than the front, a place of subservience.
 
Valerie, the guildmaster for the Crescent Hunters standing in as their lone ambassador, gingerly took a few moments to look around the room. She wasn't used to seeing so many people, especially those of certain organizations her people came to scorn over the millennia. The other thing she wasn't used to were the abundance of technology their guard detail were using. Desolatians only had at most, crude weaponry from the olden eras of War, if they didn't make their own tools.  Even if this were an accord to forge an alliance of some sort, it didn't dissolve the clear differences that Booga's history carved out over the years. But, for what it was worth, Valerie was willing to set that aside just long enough to understand the urgency of the situation. Without saying another word, she took a seat squarely across from the Operative, unsure of what to say.

The only other Desolatian here is the one from the Clan of Swords... she thought to herself. Not sure if that's good or bad.
 
“Well, this is the first time I ever step foot in Futuropolis. Hero City City is one thing, but this place is purely amazing upon all counts.” Jayden, the Space Commander of the Beyonders Guild, praised the city. “Once this whole thing blows over, I can take my crew for a little field trip here.” He was oblivious to the possible tension in the room. He took a couple of seconds to look around the room, to familiarize everyone’s faces before the meeting commence. 

Minute Man, the sole General of Heroes Organization and ambassador, entered the conference room and took a seat between Jayden and the Operative. “Everyone has been brief and well aware of the scale of how dangerous a threat this thing to the world.” Minute-Man spoke while he type ton of information on the phone, without even looking at it. “Let’s start this meeting, shall we? I hope you folks can keep up.” He said in the condescending tone.

“Oh boy…” Ballows uttered under her breath in reponse to Minute-Man’s comment. She is an ambassador for Brotherhood and Sisterhood, since Tort is unavailable, Faunix and Black Shadow are in Shina Ania, Z is unwilling to join the meeting out of sheer laziness. “This is why I hate these type of meetings… always too much condescending.” 

Silence, leader of the Clan of Swords, took a look around, before eyeing Valerie the most before turning to take a seat next to her. “The abundance of technology is an eyesore…” He said. “So you’re Valerie. Heard a lot about you from my former members, contrary to their perception of you, I seen you are a high-class warrior. It’s a pleasure.” He held out his hand for a shake.
 
The Operative watched everyone get seated, seemingly preparing herself. When she felt it was right, she began to speak.

"Thank you all for coming to this accord. My name is Mary Ann, and even if I am the technical host here, I am by no means in any position of power. Though you may not feel it, the people of Booga may come to praise this day in thanks for protecting them. With the Solarian coming, for some of us tensions have been high. Considering that this is a being capable of and willing to destroy our home, there's a lot of pressure. But this accord is not about killing him. This accord is about protecting the people of this planet from his wrath. The Meeting realized that, in it's hubris, it could not protect all the people of Booga. Instead, we realized that the rest of the guilds would be the most effective at that. Unlike my bosses, I realize the work we do in the Desolate Lands helps no one but the few and the privileged. The Clan of Swords and the Crescent Hunters Guild do much better jobs than us, in every way. And so, I have to beg you all to do what you can to protect those that you can. The Brotherhood and Sisterhood of Magic are among the most powerful groups in Paradise. The people of Empire State purely adore the Heroes Organization. And the Beyonders are capable of things that I never thought possible. You all working on your own, can protect more than all of us working all together. But we all share a limit in what we can do." She cleared her voice and quickly drank a liquid not quite water and not quite human fluid.

"This accord's true purpose is to gather us together to make an agreement to help each other in our own plans to protect the people of Booga. We each know how to best protect those under our influence. But together, we'll have the resources to do the job. Are you willing?" She asked.
 
"The place certainly looks a lot cleaner than back home, but the air reeks of gasoline exhaust." Valerie said, feeling at ease once Silence started up conversation with her. "I haven't gotten to hear much from you in my neck of the woods lately, but I hear you run things well enough." She shook his hand, but before they could continue any further, the meeting had started.

She listened intently and was the first to speak up.

"While I can do what I can with my people to keep our part of the Desolate Lands protected, we don't have much resources or manpower... My Guild has only recently started up-- not many experienced hunters are around that easily anymore. Praise and things like that, is nice and all..." Valerie said before gesturing towards herself and Silence. She did care about protecting people, even working with others, but for her, there needed to be a more compelling reward than praise from strangers. "But I'd like to be rewarded something in return for our efforts in the alliance. Plenty of things need fixing back home that money can't exactly bring..."

Maybe if the Empirican's organizations could have dealt with this correctly the first time, we wouldn't be here cleaning it up and leaving the credit of honor to them... Valerie thought with apprehension, although she kept this comment to herself.
 
“I have to agree with Valerie; as long compensation is guaranteed, I will offer my guild will offer full support of what’s needed.” Silence said. “If the big wigs of Empire State couldn’t handle this, then it’s clearly an enemy that needs to be dealt with quickly.” 

“Of course Desolatians would like something in return.” Minute-Man said. “Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but obviously awards will be given out for your contributions; it shouldn’t be the first thing in your mind right now, in fact honored you lots are even in the room right now.” Minute-Man checked on his phone to see any updates is happening in Empire State at the moment. 

“Ahem…” Jayden tried to buffer the tense atmosphere and prevented Silence from saying anything that would escalate things. “Well, my crew will be willing to provide some assistances—plus, it’s a chance to restock our stuff we needed for space travel. That and we need this planet to continue existing anyways, where else we’re going to crashed and sleep?” Jayden attempted to break the ice by making a joke of the situation.

Ballows sweated. “Well, my intuitions will also be offering support, hehe… I don’t think there’s anything wrong with asking if rewards will be there at the end….”
 
"I believe we all can offer things to each other that would help out the people we protect." Ann stated in response to Silence and Ballows. "The Meeting can offer monetary compensation and some of our hoard of magical artifacts to the Brother and Sisterhoods of Magic." She said to the mage. "And the Hero Organization might be able to offer technological devices to help clean up in the Desolate Lands, much better than my thick headed bosses could." She added to Silence and Valerie. She took a drink before continuing.

"Jayden, there is a request I am supposed to deliver to you. A relatively small one according to my superiors. We're asking for you to track the Solarian's incoming meteor, to give us time and to know when it will hit, and where on Booga it will crash. Is that too much?"
 
"Might is a bit of a stretch. We have no interests of aiding countries of their domestic issues. They should take what they get for their respective guilds and keep it moving." Minute-Man said. "This is simply a truce to stop an emery that greatly threatens the stability of the world; his defeat, alone, should be worth more than any measly compensations." 

Ballows mumbled under her breath. "God, this is why I hate this type of meetings, I wonder if the Leaders' Board is the same way."  She looks up to Ann, to give her confidence by responding her questions. "That'll be wonders to the Magic Societies; there are still tons of magic that still left unknown in this world... and now beyond it considering this... Alien you described."

"That'll be easy enough to accomplished." Jayden stated. "I'll give you the details once my team managed to track it down to the nanosecond it comes." 

Silence raises his hand once more, ignoring Minute-Man's taunt; he isn't interested in any technological materials, but more an assurance that his guild is able to survive long enough to pay his members to continue slaying monsters. "Another question, if you don't mind me asking. "Is there a possible connection to this Solarian to the man named ShineCero?"

Ballows narrowed her eyes. "H-hey, why are you bringing his name into this?"

"Simple; ShineCero supposedly threatens to destroy the world under the alias as Negative; don't you think it's a bit of a concidence that we're facing an powerful mage with outworldly abilities? It would be great to see if there's any connections; if not, then you can ignore it for the time being."
 
"I hadn't caught wind of that, but now that you mention it, I too find it an odd coincidence, considering that..." Valerie stared vacantly in Minute-Man's direction. "One of the smaller cities in Empire State was nearly wiped off the map by a similarly otherworldly being. I saw the headlines on one of the big jumbotrons during the ride here. Port Graham, was it? With the Solarian attack, that's two strange coincidences that both have taken place in Empire State. One more happening like that, and the entire continent might go into... civil unrest. This continent needs the most help with the Solarian, not the other way around, it seems."

"It wouldn't be too off the mark to say the next incident would be headed for Empire State again. It is one of the most advanced places in the world after all. A huge population... expensive buildings... lots of potential civilian casualties. Why bother with "dumps" like ours, when you can aim for the most peaceful and technologically advanced of the regions and make your presence known?" Valerie didn't take Minute Man's comments very lightly, so she decided to turn the remarks against him by disguising it as concern. "Not to mention there's the city of criminals to worry about. You're going to need some help with wrangling them back to their prisons when the Solarian inevitably causes enough chaos that they can go on the loose. I hear the criminals in Los Demonios can be particularly nasty."
 
Ann shook her head in disappointment at Minute-Man's statements, holding back the normally nightmarish teeth of hers.

"Cooperation is how we'll kill the Solarian Minute-Man, and from where I sit, at the foot of this table, the Meeting is confident in its ability to kill the Solarian, and we are more than certain that the majority of the members of the Heroes Organization would rush headlong into battle against the alien without a second thought. This accord wasn't called to ensure the death of the Solarian, but instead to protect our people from his wrath as effectively as possible. This is not just a truce to kill an threat to our planet, it is so much more. Now if your help in the Desolate Lands is an issue, the Meeting is perfectly willing to simply buy technology from Empire State to keep the Desolate Lands guilds in our cooperation." She said looking to Silence and Valerie. "If your buy in, Minute, is killing the Solarian, their buy in is compensation. And they are perfectly willing to walk away from the table if their needs aren't met. That's why I'm here, brokering this." She said. She then focused in on Silence in particular.

"The Meeting has turned up no results between the Solarian and any other mages, our own investigation states that the Solarian comes to Booga for the sake of avenging his master, who was murdered here back when the Desolate Lands was still Rupee. Even if the leader of the Brotherhood was behind these events in some form, I doubt he has telepathic powers allowing him to converse across to another galaxy. Though the fact that I have no idea who this Negative is, troubles me greatly. My bosses must be even more blinded in their zeal than I thought."
 
Minuteman’s conduct remained stern, unwilling to back down from his position on supplying other countries with resources. His eyebrows twitches when Valerie brought up points that Empire State was attack multiple times under his watch. Before he has a chance to make a comment, his phone blasted loudly as multiple text messages arrived on his cellular phone. He took a quick glance; his expression went from shock before frowning in an instant before putting his cell away.

“Don’t bother, Ann. I have no interest of buying any form of technology from Desolate Lands. My Guild just wants to be paid sufficiently and that’s it.” Silence smirked after Valerie called Minute Man out, giving the woman thumbs up before continuing. “Compensations mean very little if the Solarian destroys the planet, so our cooperation is going too happened regardless of our interests.” Silence listened in to Ann’s explanation regarding Negative. “Then I have no comment; if Negative and this Solarian have no connection, there’s nothing to discuss at lengths.” 

Ballows clears her throat. “Well, Negative can be dealt with at another time until we have more information about him anyways…..” Ballows turns to Ann. “Your group came to our offices a while back that you needed two of our mages. How is that going? I would very much like to know how our mages are doing.” 

Jayden chose to remained silence since he has no idea and not interested in squabbles about who gets what for their contributions.
 
"We're more accustomed to being 'old school' with our lifestyles at any rate. The most we would need in terms of technology is the kind that is simple enough for our commonfolk to maintain and repair themselves. We've little use for expensive technology that costs more to pay an outsider to fix, but we can discuss that at a later time," Valerie explained to Ann. The Dalv Tribe will find a way to hoard the high-tech things for themselves, at any rate. she thought to herself before crossing her arms and keeping her composure. 

"So what's the first plan of action? If he has held a grudge for thousands of years, I can't imagine we can do much to reason with him. I hardly even remember the history of Rupoee, and my elders could barely hold onto the war stories themselves. We could have our guild members team up and track down the lost history, but..." she trailed off.
 
Ann turned to Ballows, the misplaced anger at Minute Man subsiding. With a strange smile, she spoke.

"The mages working in the Opera House have been a great asset in handling some magical artifacts we came across that our uh... Less than scientific method of examination didn't work out well. We've been paying their salaries, but the best thing they've done is assist in a little project that Vincent was working on. A way to try and remove the lingering radiation from Paris. A small step, but a big one for the Meeting's members." She said, expressing some genuine happiness, before cynicism rapidly returned. "And a massive PR boost for the Gunner's little 'save the Desolate Land' from itself bull. 'How to cure the Desolate Lands' is probably what he'll title the speech. Oh well. If people stop getting sick in the city, and my boss gets to stroke his ego, so be it." She then looked over to Valerie. Instead of explaining herself, she just tried to answer the question.

"We could work together to locate some lost history. I know the Dark Gunner would jump on that personally, if he could dump everything else onto anyone else. Long story short, what we found through two sides of the same story involving some aliens, is that the Solarian's master was pretending to be a ghost in Paris, and secretly operating a sort of, proto-Heroes Organization, after the Desolate Lands became livable again. Problem is the people in that time thought he was an actual ghost, and well, he overestimated his ability to survive a shotgun. So, no, I don't believe we can reason with him. As for the first step of action, I need a drink first." She said, grabbing the red liquid and taking another drink.
 
Ballows smiled. “I’m glad the mages are giving out their best to assist the Opera House, but…” She turns to Valerie, concerned about the lack of an actual plan. “I was brief about the alien mage coming here to destroy everything… and…”

“And words would mean squat at this point. The mage already made up its mind to flat out sent this world to outright oblivion over something trivial.” Silence chimed in midway through Ballows talking.

“Yes…” Ballows agreed, although she was slightly annoyed. “So, what is the first course of action? Should we gather our strongest warriors and wait for it to appear somewhere?”

“I thought the Meeting of the Dark is developing a super-weapon against the mage.” Silence said. “That’s the gist of what I heard, anyways.”

“Yeah, I remember something like that as well.” 

Minute-Man, breaking out of his silence, closes his phone. “The Heroes Organization had data on the alien mage and currently attempting to develop a prototype weapon against it. However, we were promised we would get information on their side in terms of weaponry against the Solarian.” He turns to Ann, his eyes narrowed. “So, what’s the hold up?”

Jason remained quiet, wanting to hear more about the "first course of action."
 
Ann focused on Minute-Man, unnatural eyes focusing in on him, producing a phone of her own.

"While we've been chit-chatting I had a personal assistant of mine go through some of the Dark Gunner's things so I can have a better idea of what's been happening. Few things that haven't gotten properly communicated from the higher ups to people like me, the third ring on the ladder." She stated, looking down. "Things like the Dark Gunner's design for a super-weapon. That I'll get to in a moment." She looked back up to Minute-Man.

"That's strange, I was the one who was supposed to deliver the information on Solarians to the Meeting. Typical Gunner couldn't even get those orders sent out right. Anyways." She stood up and walked away from the table, reaching into a bag that was sitting nearby, sorting through bottle waters and snacks, she pulled out a book and tossed it backwards, landing right infront of Minute-Man. On the front was written A Report on Solarian Biology and Magic, and How to Kill One. She went back to the table and sat down.

"In short, Solarians store magic inside their bodies in special organelles. The easiest way to kill a Solarian is to use a special material that causes said magic to explode when exposed to Solarian flesh. A bit ironically, they developed it themselves." She said. "But that's a full report on their biology that we managed to get from what library archives the Withereds had on the Solarians, along with detailed analysis of how their magic works and how to counter it. I'm certain it'll be useful for training whoever wants to try and save the planet." She stated before looking at her phone again.

"Now, the information that I have on the Dark Gunner's ideas for a super-weapon built entirely for killing the Solarian... This is just a materials list." She said in confusion. "Mana-Burn bullets, sourced from the Withereds of Destiny's Fall... Able to explode magic on contact with Solarian flesh, effectiveness is similar to internal combustion in humans, but more violent. Void Energy Orbs located in Shia Ana by Meeting Operative... Tests from samples purchase indicate ability to rapidly dispel the energy of photons and freeze rooms, effective against the Solarian's innate preference for heat magic, track down seller's supply source. No weapon design, but that stuff... Sounds like it could kill a god level threat." She remarked looking up to the group. "In addition there is instructions for the day the Solarian arrives. Strongest warriors converge on weapon emplacement as decided by the Beyonder's, engage the Solarian to keep him distracted until the weapon can successfully hit him for a kill shot. All guilds enact their citizen protection plans as outlined by the end result of the Accord. Even a god level threat can fall to the might of heroes defending their home."
 
"So, while someone works on the design, we help harvest the materials for your superweapons?" Valerie asked with a slow intonation of the syllables as she was trying to digest all of the information presented to her. "And then work on coordinating everything for when he shows back up?" She crossed her arms pensively. "I do have one mage as a recent recruit..." 

But I'm not sure about the extent of her experience with magic being a non-Paradican... Valerie finished the sentence in her thoughts.
 
"Sounds simple enough." Jason downplay the issue, but in reality, it does seems to have a lot of work to be done here. "Get the materials, you guys build this super weapon and bam, everyone is done and over with?"

"I can probably sent out a few more mages than needed that wish to seek out this journey of finding those materials." Ballows said. 

"If my team isn't busy with their quest, I supposed I can send them on a quest to find those materials. They need the exercise anyways." Silence said.

"And in the meantime, what happens if this thing decides to attack a place? Just hold it off until it gets bored?" Minute-Man said. "It seems counter-productive that this alien thing would either not doing anything until it wants to cause a ruckus or wait for us to build this weapon." He closes his eyes for a second. "I wouldn't be surprise if he's already aware of what we're doing."
 
Ann focused on Minute-Man, the red eyes of the vampiric person trained on him as she took her seat.

"You make a solid point. The Solarian very well could appear in this room and blow us all up with one well placed fire ball. That'd be the end of organized resistance against him. Yet." She looked upwards, and then towards a wall, before then addressing the group.

"He hasn't. I can't say for certain that he's not aware of us, nor that he is. But thinking about where he appeared, the Paris Opera House, then Magician's Square, followed by Hos Complex... None of them had any linking traits. No ties to his dead master, no individuals tied to two attacks, no sort of proclamation or manifesto. It's almost like they were truly random attacks, that coincidentally involved the guilds. Paris is one of the largest population centers in the Desolate Lands, Magician's Square and Hos Complex both were major urban areas. Why would he attack any particular place, if he's just intending to burn the planet down to ashes and wipe off all life from the surface? Perhaps, he just doesn't care who he kills, as long as it satisfies an insatiable need for revenge."
 
"Let's hope he doesn't decide to pick Shina Ania as his new proving grounds," Valerie said. "That's a continent chock-ful of cultists, from what I hear. If anyone's looney enough to ally themselves with him, it might be them. But if he insists on operating alone, that might not be a problem other than indirectly giving them more motivation to cause more trouble around these parts."
 
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