BZPRPG - Ta-Wahi

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  • Posted 2021-11-21 00:54:39 UTC
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  • OOC: Quoribay from Ga-Wahi

    IC: Quoribay [Ta-Koro]

    As I was saying, I had to go to Ta-Koro. Quiet hike over there - I did see a pair of Ta-Toa fed-lookin' goons, probably on their way to see the new ships, which was a good sign - I knew as long as the island's eyes were on the women from overseas and their inevitable antics, they'd be less likely to focus on little ol' me and my exploits.

    In a good way. Look - I want to be infamous as much as the next guy, but you also gotta have a healthy appreciation for laying low and not winding up dead. Dorian Shaddix was famous too. Alls I'm sayin'.

    So with the Dasaka drawing the attention of the island, and somehow, my story, I casually slipped into Ta-Koro through the front door. It had been a while since I'd been there.

    Why was I in Ta?

    Well, I had a coffin to buy.

  • Edited on 2021-11-21 00:55:19 by BULiK
  • Posted 2021-11-25 03:25:33 UTC
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  • IC: Torana - Ta-Koro, outside the Magma Lounge

    And she laughed.

    Laughed. Madwoman!

    Torana braced herself as the Ta-Toa closed the distance and took her swings. The first jab was caught against her raised arms, after which the Vo-Toa executed her response. See, Saeva had some pretty toned legs - Torana had noted as much.

    But hers were longer.

    Torana’s torso leaned out of the way of the remaining pair of jabs as she brought her leg up in a round kick, directed at Saeva’s ribs.

  • Posted 2021-12-01 04:46:59 UTC
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  • IC: Chiaki - Ta-Wahi - The Charred Forest
    Good thing I have my jitte out, because that green Skakdi just doesn't seem to want to go down.  It's time to take a more active role in changing that.

    While he's occupied charging up his laser vision, I make my move.  I dash forward, boosting myself with a blast of air energy.  (The sharp movement hurts a little; I'm going to feel it more when the adrenaline wears off.)  My aim is true, and I end up landing exactly where I wanted to- right around his unguarded midsection.  I thrust my jitte forward, its blunt point making contact with him and sending jolts of electricity running through his body.

    In the moment, it never occurred to me to apply brakes, though.  Instead of a clean stop, I end up practically slamming into him, taking us both to the ground.  (That one I'm definitely going to feel when it's over.)  The only benefit I can find to this new situation is that he can't take the jitte away from his body... if only because they're pinned between us while we're down.

    OOC:
    @Razgriz @Geardirector sorry about the wait mates

  • Posted 2021-12-04 19:43:27 UTC
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  • IC: Zelvin and Ash Lads (Charred Forest)

    Chiaki had picked his moment well. Between getting attacked at such a vulnerable moment and getting a sustained electric shock applied right to his guts, Torben was out for the count by the time he hit the ground. He would continue to spasm erratically as the electricity coursed through him. Zelvin could turn her attention to what was happening with the other Skakdi.

    Drabak got to feel the full force of Jolek's final blow, and it did everything hoped for and more. The Skakdi gurgled something that may have been words, but he no longer had the strength to shape them.

    There was one part of his body that reacted differently, however. His spine's many points hummed with their own power, electrical arcs jumping across them as something built up. Whatever "work" Drabak had had done to his spine, it was about to go off, and Drabak himself wasn't there to guide it in any way, if he even could have.

    Thinking quickly, Zelvin pulled out her one piece of truly high-tech equipment. The air around Drabak was getting uncomfortably hot as Zelvin fired her launcher at the ground next to him.

    "Get to cover!" Zelvin shouted to the others, even as a mound of crystal burst out of the ground to grow upwards from where Zelvin had just seeded it. It grew upwards to wrap around the unconscious Drabak, sealing the Skakdi inside the crystal that had spontaneously started to grow, and whatever his modified spine was about to do.

    OOC: @Razgriz @capMARVELOUS

  • Posted 2021-12-05 03:30:34 UTC
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  • OOC: finally we are out of Le-Wahi

    IC Kanohi - Ta-Wahi - the Charred Forest

    The trek out of Le-Wahi had seemed endless. The burnt trees scorched by the recent fire had stretched far to the north, blending with the fiery landscape of Ta-Wahi. Kanohi hardly was aware that they had crossed the border, until he realized all around the trio was black volcanic rock.

    The Charred Forest differed from the trees of Le-Wahi who had been caught in the forest fire. This was a stain on the land, the result of a battle between the Matoran and the Makuta, long before even the Toa Mata arrived on the island. Long before Kanohi washed up on the shore. For centuries the jungle had not regrown, no new plants fed off nutrients left by the charred trees, the cycle of life had ended. It was eternally a jungle of ash.

    Kanohi shivered at this place, fidgeting with his bracelet. Now that Hakari and Lapu knew some of the Telegraph language, Hakari in particular seemed to be a quick learner, they might realize Kanohi was repeatedly clicking the simple prefix “Ta” from his bracelet as an unsteady mantra. After all the Element of Fire strengthened him, visions were easier to have through it. But fire also brought fear, pain, confusion.

    Some visions were horrific memories, of Aurax’s death, or of the false Makuta’s torture burning into his optics and roasting his voice box in a monstrous attempt to harvest prophecies from the Fe-Matoran. Other visions were of nonsense, like Stannis being an ancient undead possessed by something like the Makuta, Nichou being a Toa of Iron who had donned the Mask of Creation, and Mata-Nui being a barren landscape. Reality was distorted by the flames, he not only saw glimpses of where might happen and what haunted him, but what never could be.

    The cross-wired vigilante kept fidgeting and clicking this mantra to himself, his right arm practically clenching the bracelet. The inferno that rocked this jungle had long diminished to embers, but he could still feel the glow of fire on him. Still could hear snatches of that cruel Matoran who thought himself the Makuta, and Kanohi’s visions a resource to exploit.

    Ta. Ta. Ta. 

    OOC: @ARROW404 @Snelly Setting the scene

  • Posted 2021-12-05 12:15:47 UTC
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  • IC: Lapu

    The Toa of Plants could feel no plants around him. His eyes could see them, but there was no life there. A chill ran down his spine that stood at odds with the overbearing heat of the region. This was less pleasant than he had anticipated.

  • Posted 2021-12-05 23:10:04 UTC
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  • IC:

    His quarry slumped fully, awareness leaving the eyes as his thinking mind was ripped from its grasp upon the body. Luckily, the Fa-Toa was a quick worker, wasting no time in calling upon his sense for the innate, invisible forces he commanded. Set the backs of the wrists opposite charge to eachother, locking them together behind his back— cuffs minus the metal. It'd keep his arms in a position where he couldn't generate any kind of power to work with. Once he woke, he'd be restrained.

    That was the idea, and yet...

    ...The Karz is all this?

    As the Skakdi's hands floated together, Jolek for the first time was cognizant of the aforementioned "work done" on the spines of the burly red criminal. Sure, the body modifications were visually striking, after a sense, but not what caught his notice. Instead, the feeling of fuzz in the air— one that he, in spite of his rudimentary understanding of the element, knew to be a rising charge. It was the reason he, and every other magnetic always knew which way north was— that sense for the fields. And right now that was a tripped wire in the back of his head, a klaxon blaring about something that didn't make any sense.

    His golden eyes narrowed, waving a hand through the air in front of him as if to confirm the texture of the thrum that had crept in from below. That much charge in one place without a Vo-Toa or another Fa-Toa around... didn't make sense. Honestly, he rarely had gotten a chance to work this side of his brain, of his abilities before... Maybe he could figure out a few things with this rare opportunity. Didn't see anything like this in the Le-Wahi jungle—

    Lines of jagged white, arcing from tip to razor tip of Drabnak's back. The taste of the fresh storm on his breath, its scent in his nostrils, filled the air as those crackling bolts continued to brighten and intensify. The gunmetal Toa stood tall after a solitary step back, feeling the invisible force brew and churn beneath him, casting flickering bursts of white onto the contours of his Pakari. The steady humming had now risen to a fever pitch, and the charge it carried began to be matched in the air in front of the curious martial artist. Since like drove off like, what would happen if he both backed off to the point that all this heat died down—

    His thoughts were brought back to stark reality as the sound of crashing glass erupted near his feet, heralding an erupting ring of crystal that surged over the Skakdi's spread-eagled form, a dome-shaped mound that shelled him and the rising thunder within. It was here that Jolek realized two things.

    The low tones of the hum continued, muffled but not silenced, and he could still feel the remnants of that charge skyrocketing within.

    This is pretty dangerous.

    "Get to cover!" Zelvin shouted. The launcher in her hands was new, one he'd never seen before, but he could only guess it the reason that crystal grew out of the ground so quickly.

    And I'm being way too complacent!

    At once, he abandoned his growing Idea in favor of obeying the screaming choir of instincts and rational brain, turning fully and bolting for all he was worth. He had wasted a lot of time already— that charge was gonna pop any moment, and depending on how thick that crystal was or wasn't, it'd end up popping too, just like a Madu fruit on a tree struck by lightning.

    What is wrong with me?

    His feet slammed into the earth, and his silver Pakari shone, pumping unnatural strength into his legs. It'd have to be enough.

    And if it wasn't. It'd be a lesson.

  • Edited on 2021-12-05 23:34:37 by Razgriz
  • Posted 2021-12-10 03:32:45 UTC
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  • IC: Hakari - The Charred Forest -

    Hakari looked at the endless amount of charred trees with curiosity. Unlike the noise of life that you heard in Le-Wahi's jungles, it was much quieter here. Every footstep they took was much louder and more noticeable. 

    "A bit eerie, isn't it?"

    @ARROW404 @Harvali

  • Posted 2021-12-10 19:22:00 UTC
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  • IC Kanohi - Ta-Wahi - the Charred Forest

    Kanohi shook himself out of his daze to nod at Hakari’s words. The air was still, and no life seemed to stir here. He vaguely heard this place was once used to harvest lava surfboards for Ta-Matoran and Matoran of Plasma, but if that was so it had not been used for such a purpose in some time.

    This was one of Kapura’s old haunts, wasn’t it?

    Dece, when he washed up on the island, amnesiac and confused, the stories of the cross-wired Ta-Matoran was some comfort. That Kapura was so strange, his brain module processing the world around him at an unusual speed, and despite that he had been the left-hand Matoran of Vakama. He had been in the Chronicler’s Company too.

    It was some comfort for him. That maybe Dece could accomplish great things. 

    Then Kapura was killed, painfully, helpless. Cruelly. Kanohi sometimes saw him dying in the flames, telling that vile Toa a riddle. It horrified him. It … Dece was never going to be worthy of the Wanderer’s Company, he was too much of a freak, he could never be a hero.

    But he … he had to try.

    Kanohi shook his head, rattling his many masks to try to calm down. He tapped his bracelet frantically for a time, trying to calm. Ta Ta Ta.

    His pumps pulled in the hot air of the Charred Forest as he tried to steady his fears, breathing heavily among the cacophony. He stumbled against a tree, it snapped against him and he smacked to the blackened earth. His heartlight was flashing as a lighthouse before a hurricane.

    He was not strong. Still he … he needed to be there for the others. He  had to help them. He shoved himself upright after laying for a time, his breathing still shallow. He reached over to the two taller beings and offered his hands, in case they would need to hold each other for comfort inthe ruins of a forest.

    OOC: @ARROW404 @Snelly 

  • Posted 2021-12-11 08:40:36 UTC
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  • 13 hours ago, Harvali said:

    IC Kanohi - Ta-Wahi - the Charred Forest

    IC: Lapu

    The tall Bo-Toa noted Kanohi's odd behavior. The repetition over and over, Ta, Ta, Ta. Something was eating at him. As the wood-armored Matoran raised his hands, a rare smile touched the corners of the jungle protector's mouth, and instead, he placed a hand on top of the Matoran's head and gave it a little rub. He didn't know much about insecurity, but he certainly understood worry and concern. Looking down at his armor, he selected a long, gnarled root from his armor, and poured his energy into it. It grew and lengthened, long enough for the three of them to hold it at a comfortable distance, like a safety rope. He nodded to Kanohi, and gestured for him to lead the way.

    OoC: Did something happen to our Ta-Matoran friend?

  • Posted 2021-12-13 02:21:27 UTC
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  • On 12/11/2021 at 3:40 AM, ARROW404 said:

    OoC: Did something happen to our Ta-Matoran friend?

    OOC: Yeah, the player of said character was banned. 

    IC: Hakari - The Charred Forest -

    Hakari noticed Kanohi's distress as well, but as she watched Lapu place a hand on the Matoran's head she knew the Toa had everything handled. It was also cute! She gave a thumbs up and smiled before taking the end of the rope offered to her, humming to herself as she did. She was perfectly happy for Kanohi to continue to lead the way, especially since she had no idea where she even was!

    @ARROW404 @Harvali

  • Posted 2021-12-13 02:59:11 UTC
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  • IC Kanohi - Ta-Wahi - the Charred Forest

    Kanohi leaned into Lap as he tapped his bracelet over and over. Ta Ta Ta. Fire enhanced his powers yet tormented him, and its effects were everywhere in this forest. Like a verbal tic he clicked the two letter phrase on his bracelet, stimming with the repetitive motion.

    Finally he calmed, and shook his head, rattling his many masks. The noise was of wood thumping together, like the hero Kanohi thumping into branches as he raced through Le-Wahi. He was a hero, not a great one, but he could do some things, handle some problems.

    His breathing was steadier now, and so he pulled out the tablet. He wrote on some of the paper that Ta-Matoran had given him. Odd that the Matoran of Fire had … was he a fan? That was still odd to think of. But maybe, maybe Kanohi was proving he was not useless. That he mattered.

    But convincing a Ta-Matoran guard was not the same as convincing the Koros, or convincing Dece.

    Still, he seemed to matter to Hakari and Lapu

    He smiled faintly at that beneath his layers, before he finished writing, “should we continue to Ga-Wahi, or stop in Ta-Koro?” Kanohi’s expression was somewhat hidden by his many masks, and he would not advocate. He would not speak over these warriors. But underneath his armor, he hoped they could head to Ga-Wahi. Ta-Koro lay among lava, that much heat and fire, a panic attack might be inevitable. 

    OOC: @ARROW404 @Snelly regarding my last post if Kapura is the Ta-Matoran you meant, Kapura died in the opening of arc 1 in this rpg, after being forced to give info to Plimbo. I did not handle it well, (not like in a rude way, in a depressed way) and it’s partly why I stopped playing until arc 3 started this year. 

  • Posted 2021-12-13 09:33:54 UTC
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  • 6 hours ago, Harvali said:

    IC Kanohi - Ta-Wahi - the Charred Forest

     “should we continue to Ga-Wahi, or stop in Ta-Koro?

    OOC: @ARROW404 @Snelly regarding my last post if Kapura is the Ta-Matoran you meant, Kapura died in the opening of arc 1 in this rpg, after being forced to give info to Plimbo. I did not handle it well, (not like in a rude way, in a depressed way) and it’s partly why I stopped playing until arc 3 started this year. 

    OoC: Snelly answered my question. I meant the one with the bird. I forgot his name.

    IC: Lapu

    The Bo-Toa stuck out his tongue in disapproval at the thought of going to a village of fire. He knew nothing about it, but he didn't have to, to understand it wouldn't agree with him. Le-Koro alone was already testing his tolerance for sedentary civilization, a town of flames was a hundred times worse. He tapped the word "Ga-Wahi" on the message.

  • Posted 2021-12-14 22:06:11 UTC
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  • IC: Hakari - The Charred Forest -

    "Ga-Wahi." She had blurted out the words before she even realized it. Much like her two companions, this climate didn't seem to agree with her. 

    @ARROW404 @Harvali

  • Posted 2021-12-15 16:01:49 UTC
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  • IC Kanohi - Ta-Wahi - the Charred Forest

    Kanohi let out a sigh of relief, his shoulders releasing a tension he had not been aware he had been clenching. Ta-Wahi, he was sure it was comfortable to Ta-Matoran and Matoran of Plasma, and maybe other breeds of Protoderms. But this desolation, the memories, he did not want to stay here.

    The vigilante pointed to the word “Ga-Wahi” on his tablet, much like Lapu had. Then he began to turn towards the north, towards the marshes of the region of water. He had not been there in some time, he was not even sure if he had ever been there. It might just have been visions he had experienced.

    Still, he knew there would be trees there. The forests of Ga-Wahi were not as dense as Le-Wahi, but they were not sparse for trees. Mangroves and forests alike lay there. Again Ta-Wahi felt unnatural, breaking up Le-Wahi and Ga-Wahi like a knife impeded in wood.

    Still he began to hike, hopefully they would leave the region of fire shortly. It was such a thin strip of land, if Mata-Nui was kind, passing through it would not take long.

    OOC: @ARROW404 @Snelly 

  • Posted 2021-12-15 17:22:17 UTC
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  • IC: Chiaki - Ta-Wahi - The Charred Forest
    "Get to cover!" the blue one yells.  And with whatever's going on with the red Skakdi, the surge of electricity around him and the crystal growing to swallow him up, getting to cover sounds like a great course of action.  Maybe it's my sheltered upbringing, but I've never seen anything quite like this, so I have no idea if it will go wrong, or what will happen if it does.

    I kick the green Skadki off of me- no easy feat, considering his considerable heft and my hurt leg- and toward the swirl of electricity and crystal.  (It's not ruthless, I tell myself; it's pragmatic.)  Before I leap back into the high branches of a nearby tree, I activate my mask power again to rip thick, body-sized slabs out of the ground and move them near the blue one and the gray one, ready to drop in front of them should they need shielding.  If something does go wrong, hopefully whatever blast ensues wears itself out on the makeshift shields before it gets to my acquaintances.

    OOC:
    @Razgriz @Geardirector

  • Posted 2021-12-19 18:14:44 UTC
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  • On 12/15/2021 at 6:22 PM, capMARVELOUS said:

    IC: Chiaki - Ta-Wahi - The Charred Forest
    "Get to cover!" the blue one yells.  And with whatever's going on with the red Skakdi, the surge of electricity around him and the crystal growing to swallow him up, getting to cover sounds like a great course of action.  Maybe it's my sheltered upbringing, but I've never seen anything quite like this, so I have no idea if it will go wrong, or what will happen if it does.

    I kick the green Skadki off of me- no easy feat, considering his considerable heft and my hurt leg- and toward the swirl of electricity and crystal.  (It's not ruthless, I tell myself; it's pragmatic.)  Before I leap back into the high branches of a nearby tree, I activate my mask power again to rip thick, body-sized slabs out of the ground and move them near the blue one and the gray one, ready to drop in front of them should they need shielding.  If something does go wrong, hopefully whatever blast ensues wears itself out on the makeshift shields before it gets to my acquaintances.

    IC: Lapu - Charred Forest

    As they made their way through the forest, the thought that they might be going in circles crept slowly into the silent Toa's mind. Every tree looked alike when it was burned. The subtle signs in nature that he had learned to identify instinctually were absent here. Burned away by centuries of incendiary flows.  The trees were marked by countless Xs, but they helped little, as each proved more likely to lead to a loop or a dead end than to the actual destination.

    He debated trying to climb to the top of the tallest tree around when a sound caught his ear. A shout, followed by the crackle of electricity. He tensed and held his arms out to his companions, calling them to stop and be silent. He doubted their senses were as keen as his, but he hoped the message would come across. He strained to hear more of the noises in the stillness of the forest. Yes, the fight continued.

    Curious, willing to help, and also more than willing to have an actual direction to head towards, he gripped to rope linking him to his traveling partners and moved again, working his speed slowly up, in the direction the sounds were coming from.

    OoC: Hope you don't mind if we drop in!

  • Edited on 2021-12-19 18:15:05 by ARROW404
  • Posted 2021-12-23 21:06:39 UTC
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  • IC Kanohi - Ta-Wahi - the Charred Forest

    Ta-Wahi was not as desolate as it first appeared. Embers still lingered on the charred bushes and shrubs, each orange glow that drifted made the Fe-Matoran flinch. He tapped his bracelet as he walked, trying to ground himself in the clicking.

    Because of the embers Kanohi kept his head tilted down in an attempt to avoid the flickering glow. He followed after the sound of Lapu’s footsteps crunching through the charred black ground and the shadows that trailed from each of his companions. The Toa took the lead, even as Kanohi became less and less aware of his surroundings.

    Then Kanohi caught sight of a shadow moving. He looked up to see Lapu extend his hands, his palm forming a vertical wall in front of the vigilante. They were not to move. Kanohi fell silent, but was not quite still. His optics probed around without moving his head, as he looked if there was somewhere he would need to grapple to.

    Then the vigilante felt the rope wrench him forwards as Lapu began to hurry towards something Kanohi had yet to hear. Kanohi did not question, just raised his Volo Lutu Launcher to fire it’s hook at any tree that seemed sturdy. Just in case he would need to respond to trouble. 

    OOC: @capMARVELOUS @ARROW404 @Snelly 

  • Posted 2021-12-23 22:31:03 UTC
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  • IC: Zelvin (Charred Forest)

    Zelvin didn't run quite as far as the other two did. Instead, the old huntress came to a stop facing the now positively vibrating mound of crystal. The humming was filling the entire clearing, and Zelvin motioned for the others to stay back, as she took one determined step forward again.

    A moment of total silence fell upon them all, just as the crystal before them reached the point of glowing white-hot like a sun. A single, solitary hairline of a fracture ran its way across the glowing mound, before it all fell apart.

    Had Drabak been awake to say anything, they would all have learned that this particular modification of his was something he called the "Storm of Spines". Exotic technology was implanted into his spine, giving its spikes the ability to burst out of his back into electrified spikes that would chain their lightning after hitting something. He would have controlled where they hit if he had his consciousness, but now it was just a crapshoot.

    With Zelvin's addition, the force of this violent launch was absorbed by the crystal, and shattered it. While Drabak's discharge shot harmlessly into the air, the crystal seal shattered into a storm of shards that flew in all directions like a wall of razor-sharp death.

    Zelvin had counted on it. Crystal was crystal, and the corona of shards cascading from the explosion shifted their path as she gestured powerfully to make the shards follow her guidance. She was working with her element now, and she wasn't going to accept anyway other than her way.

    The cloud of crystal shards were sucked into a vortex surrounding Zelvin, one that slowly shrank, tightened, slowed down. Finally, Zelvin could could guide it all into her palms, reforming the cloud into solid gemstones. Which she appraised for a moment without a word.

    "There we are. A bit hairy, but results are results. Let's bag them" she said, quite business-like, and approached one of the downed Ash Lads.

    OOC: @Razgriz @capMARVELOUS

  • Posted 2021-12-24 19:31:43 UTC
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  • OOC: This was posted while camping a wall plug at an airport. Please be patient.

    IC:

    Even as he surged forward, even after months of wearing down beneath the burgeoningly industrial confines of the small world of Ta-Koro, Jolek’s senses had yet to leave him through the heat haze of adrenaline. If anything, they’d sharpened, moreso than he’d felt in ages. Combat had its way of heightening the Self. Whatever that may have been.

    He heard the crack. Through the hum that had practically become the roar of an oncoming swarm, one that engulfed the clearing in lockstep with the pulsing alabaster light that washed over it, his ears still caught the sound of rock fracturing in hairline.

    In spite of his good senses, he instinctively threw his head over his shoulder, beholding a second sun rising from beneath the ever present fog of thick, sulphuric Mangaia ash—

    “Hey, wait—“

    And Zelvin standing tall, almost in perfect mimickry of his earlier folly. He wanted to trust her to know what she was doing, after all, the crystalline shell was her idea to begin with. He knew that logically, she had enough experience to keep herself safe.

    The gunmetal Fa-Toa nonetheless skidded to a stop, turning and inexplicably doubling back. Even though he’d barely had time to make safe distance… he’d already passed Mama Clench. That old woman was even stepping forward.

    She’s gotta be way too close. The built up force of that popping’d—

    Oh, Karz.

    A solitary filament, a ribbon of lethal white, forced its way through the the hairline.

    Too late. 

    The dome burst, exactly as he’d realized it would, sending a cascade of crystal shards in all directions. The almighty thunderclap had raced the fragments there, washing over the clearing and rattling Jolek’s eardrums. He grit his teeth, thankfully far enough that the explosion’s concussion didn’t hurt him—

    Something quick slammed into his brow, prompting him to duck down behind crossed forearms in that same pastiche of a shoulder roll from earlier, as wet warmth cascaded down over his eyelid. A small shower of fragments buffeted his cross guard for not even a half-second storms of nicks, scrapes, and bruises—

    Before a shield of earth bore the brunt of the heavier, larger chunks flying out from the epicenter. There weren’t any Onu-Toa that he’d spotted before now… the newcomer’s mask?

    And then, inexplicably, he felt the shards pulling back. Even the fragments that had embedded themselves into his arms (one even in his Pakari, shamefully) were drawn out, the earthen shield crumbling as that first wave of chunks tore its structure out with them. He looked onward, with a tight, pensive jaw, as the brunt of the shrapnel, before it could even reach those two layers of defense, had stopped in midair.

    He wiped the crimson blood from atop one of his golden eyes. He hated being wrong this many times in quick succession. First complacent, then panicked, and now totally out of his depth. He thought he’d felt enough force built up within that bubble that Zelvin was endangered by the bursting air alone.

    I wasn’t even close to judging the range, then? Or is it that I thought her to be too fragile?

    Unconsciously, his teeth ground together beneath the thin, tight line of his expression.

    …Don’t even have the luxury of knowing, do I? Amateur. Numbskull. You knew you were dumb already, but now…

    Okay. So, she used her elemental control to take care of all but the smallest and quickest shards, coalescing them into those two gems in her hand, right? That’s why I’m not picking rocks out of my armor right now. I thought I felt enough force built up in that thing to send a shockwave through the air, like a Madu, but…

    He walked forward to meet her, minding the cut on his brow with a couple fingers. Head wound bleeding like all karz… but not very deep. Tale old as time. At the very least, he could recapture a little dignity, maybe even a little pride, by continuing to look at how he’d messed up without making excuses.

    I guess I need to figure out how all that electricity relates… to explosions. I guess. Did the rock absorb some of the brunt too? Maybe it’s that. Harder to break through taking more of the raw force. And that was why the shrapnel managed to get a little sneakers out and into me.

    ”All yours, ma’am. I… I actually don’t know if Guards can process bounties the same as freelancers like you.” he said, somewhat deflated as the high tension left him. Reaching forward and concentrating, he bound the pair’s hands together with magnetic force— first Red, then Green.

    He regarded the gems in her palms again. Mastery bred that sort of cool head, huh? Like he felt in a fistfight, she knew her exact capability when it came to manipulating those shards, that dome, the vortex that had swirled into them. She could take those risks all day, because she had the experience and training.

    He looked down to his own palm, the same he’d cuffed the Skakdi with, and grunted beneath his breath, an unvoiced grumble.

    Couldn’t dream of holding a candle to that. Not now. Maybe never… No. That way lies dea—

    A rustle in the bush, far off. Branches snapping. He scanned the field, spotting their mutual acquaintance perched in a nearby tree. Too close, not him. Good that he was okay, but not their incoming—

    “Company.” he spoke, voice caught between the states of tension and the previous release. He wouldn’t get caught unawares again. “I hear ‘em. They’re not trying super hard for me not to, either.”

    Not knowing what was headed his way, Jolek felt his hand returning to that short guard’s sword, and his stance settling low as he faced the direction of the noise.

    Prepare for worst, hope for best.

  • Posted 2021-12-26 11:31:15 UTC
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  • IC: Zelvin (Charred Forest)

    "It's a Sanctum Guard warrant either way, you'd need a bit of leave to collect this, I suspect," Zelvin remarked "but don't worry. I can cover for it in advance"

    She tucked the reformed gemstones in under her cloak, and did the same with her launcher. Zelvin had to admit, she was finding that fancy device she'd gotten from Mr. Shaddix quite useful.

    "And I'll of course have to say thank you to both of you," she added, nodding to both Jolek and Chiaki, "you're both entitled to a share of the spoils, no question."

    Zelvin spent a moment collecting the weapons of the downed duo. She regarded Torben's staff with particular interest. Apparently this device had somehow let the Skakdi influence even the mostly-dead vegetation of the Charred Forest. Very impressive.

    "I will say, if there's one thing about Skakdi I envy it's those vision powers," she remarked idly, "Laser Vision would suit me rather well, I think"

    “Company.” he spoke, voice caught between the states of tension and the previous release. He wouldn’t get caught unawares again. “I hear ‘em. They’re not trying super hard for me not to, either.”

    Zelvin nodded, and put aside her loot to instead have her hands free. She could also hear them, if she engaged her Kanohi. These people weren't trying to sneak up on anyone, which in this case made her feel less on guard.

    OOC: @Razgriz @capMARVELOUS, and now also @ARROW404 @Harvali @Snelly

  • Posted 2021-12-26 17:55:01 UTC
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  • IC: Hakari - The Charred Forest -

    "Hmm?" As Lapu tugged on the rope, the Lesterin's attention was drawn to the figures up ahead. Hakari strained her vision to get a better look, but she found it was easier just to get closer. So she did. As she approached them she smiled and waved. "Hello there!" Being the only one of her group that seemed capable of speaking currently she figured it fell to her to speak out.

    They seemed friendly enough to her, even if she'd only observed them for no more than a few seconds. 

    OOC: @Razgriz @capMARVELOUS @ARROW404 @Harvali @Geardirector

  • Posted 2021-12-26 19:49:17 UTC
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  • IC: Chiaki - Ta-Wahi - The Charred Forest
    It would seem that my makeshift shields ended up almost wholly unnecessary, but I'm still glad I pulled them up.  The column of lightning shoots into the sky with a brilliant flash, one I might admire were it not for the storm of crystal shards that accompany it- a storm that I didn't get fully out of range of.  Instead of ripping up a new shield for myself, I simply brace myself as best I can while exposed on a tree branch.  Plenty of smaller shards open my armor and skin as they shoot past... and do the same on the way back.

    I watch, fascinated, as the blue one coaxes shards both large and small to her and compresses them in her hands.  I've never seen a Toa of Crystal at work before.

    That, it would seem, is the end of that.  Leaping down from the tree- gritting my teeth against the impact jarring my hurt leg- I rejoin my acquaintances in sweeping the area around the downed Skakdi for any extra goodies that might have gone astray.  The blue one offers me spoils for my efforts.  "I'll not say no," I reply, picking up my ruined hat.  "Maybe just enough for a new hat, though."

    The gray one announces company, and I hear their approach with him.  Perhaps, like me, they're making themselves obvious to show that they harbor no ill intent.  I don't want to be on my guard again so soon after a battle, but as has been noted, better to be safe than sorry.  Being on guard doesn't stop me from cupping one hand around my mouth and calling to them, "Ho there!  'Fraid you missed all the action, friends."

    As they approach, I get a better look at them.  A bronze Matoran, a teal Lesterin, and a... tree man?

    OOC:
    @Razgriz @Geardirector and that'd be @Harvali @Snelly @ARROW404

  • Posted 2021-12-26 21:20:19 UTC
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  • IC:

    "Sanctum... isn't that Ko-Koro?" he asked in undertone, half to himself, as his eyes continued to study the shapes marching through the burnt brush and into the clearing. Friendly looking group enough, and certainly not hungry for a fight given how openly that Lesterin called out her greeting... He let his shoulders slack some, posture rising a little even as he stayed in stance, one foot behind the other, ready to move swiftly. His right hand loosened too, now resting upon his pommel as opposed to clutching the hilt. With his left, he waved back to the trio. "I got started helping process some of the refugees from there... huh."

    His tone seemed to almost be one of reminder to himself rather than venturing towards any real point. Perhaps he was hunting down a connection to the frozen north he'd never visited. A context to place things within.

    Be a change of pace.

    "You three traveling to the village?" he called, voice carrying clear now that the fight had closed off. As a guardsman, he was pretty sure he owed them (and their Le-Toa compatriot) a trip back... Plus, he knew the shortest way all but like the back of his hand. That was the reason Mama Clench had taken him aboard after all— as much as anywhere in Ta-Wahi had been, this was Jolek's neck of the woods.

    Reminds me, actually.

    Out of the corner of his mouth, he circled back to the matter of the Ash Lads one final time.

    "If you insist I'll take some, Zelvin, but I don't need too much. Never have."

  • Edited on 2021-12-26 21:30:43 by Razgriz
  • Posted 2021-12-27 02:00:13 UTC
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  • IC Kanohi - Ta-Wahi - the Charred Forest

    Kanohi shuffled in behind them, before catching the glint of their weapons. Weapons were a part of life in Mata-Nui, but he still felt his heartlight slightly speed up. He knew all to well he was useless in a fight. At best he could try to keep civilians safe in a fight, but with none around, his limitations were all the more visible.

    He swallowed though and shook out his many wooden masks, trying to center himself. He shook his head once more, before approaching what looked to be a Toa of … Magnetism maybe and slowly upholstered his wood tablet. Unlike the tablets of Onu-Koro it was just a wooden slab, with a wooden clamp holding down some paper.

    Kanohi glanced at the top sheet of paper, searching for a specific phrase. Finally he pointed to the words “Ga-Wahi.

    The wooden mask he worn above his true mask covered his expression, but his metallic head’s cheeks were beginning to turn red with heat. This Toa, some of his gear was familiar. like that Ta-Matoran they ran into in Le-Wahi, he had been in the Ta-Koro guard loaned to Le-Koro, right? And that guard had heard of Kanohi, that fast grappling Fe-Matoran vigilante who wore armor of wooden masks, the vigilante who traveled Le-Wahi trying to rescue villagers from forest fires and rahi.

    Kanohi’s brain module heated enough to discolor his cheeks, making him blush beneath his masks. Would this Toa have heard of him too? He … he was … that had been so awkward and uncomfortable, he was not exactly eager to be recognized so quickly.

    OOC: @capMARVELOUS @Geardirector @ARROW404 @Razgriz @Snelly

  • Posted 2021-12-29 07:10:01 UTC
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  • IC:

    "What's with all the..." the Fa-Toa squinted at the Matoran, carefully shuffling towards him with what looked like a wooden tablet in hand, likely a more rudimentary form of the clipboards that dominated the workrooms of any Guard higher-ups. "...wooden kanohi?"

    His question was posed rather bluntly. As far as he was aware, he'd never really come across this particular...

    I guess you'd call it styling?

    When it came to external protection, even those armor sets composed of wood he'd come across had always been geared more towards simple function than such consistently recurrent form. Noble Ruru. Noble Ruru. Noble Ruru. They formed pauldrons for his upper arms, a skirt of rounded plates for his lower body, even one over his true mask to shield the face from incoming strikes as well as (well, maybe more importantly) from view. Certainly unique stuff...

    On his back was a launcher, probably modified for grapple and reel in the cable and hook were anything to go off of. Didn't seem a bad idea once he gave it a little thought— the denser trees near the center of Le-Wahi, from which their course'd suggest they came, would be more than amply robust enough to support the weight of everyone here combined. Even throwing in the two unconscious lugs in the background would sooner wear out the crank than the tree.

    As a weapon, it... might have served some off-kilter use, too. Probably more slapdash fighting than, say, a simple spear, but a sharp end was a sharp end. Sharp ends getting launched were dangerous no matter how, why, or what.

    All in all, it made for a karz of an ensemble. This must have been a pretty colorful guy, to contrast the simple transparency Jolek had known in those very same jungles for years.

    Odd though it seemed, he had no right to begrudge.

    While he had been taking stock of the bronzed matoran's equipment, the matoran had in turn been searching— and with a single finger, indicated a specific phrase upon the sheet of paper attached to his clipboard: Ga-Wahi. At this, Jolek leaned back with a slow nod, look of dawning comprehension gracing his Pakari as he folded his arms.

    "Ah."

    So he's a mute?

    "Ga-Wahi, then, we're just the throughway. That isn't too hard," he replied, content not to press any further for the moment his curiosities. "If you want to use the main Koro-to-Koro roads I can lead everyone outta the brush and back on the trail to Ga—If not, and you're content to just keep cutting through the forest... straight shot North oughta work." his right hand, the same hat had formerly rested upon the sword, swung out directly to the side, eyes still trained perfectly on the matoran of many masks. As a Fa-Toa, his internal compass was good to a fault— saved him countless times in the jungle.

    "You ought to either run into the city, or into the coastline. So long as you keep straight as the Kahu flies, you'll hit one or the other, and you can probably spot the first if you just keep walking along the second."

    His eyes now recentered to bring the other two back into his vision. The Lesterin seemed a good sort and her demeanor hadn't really changed through the one-and-a-half-sided conversation, but their third compatriot remained silent. He...

    Did trees come to life when Jolek wasn't looking?

    He'd be harder to read.

  • Posted 2021-12-29 21:45:23 UTC
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  • IC: Lapu - Charred Forest

    The "tree man" stared at the source of the energy burst they had just witnessed. He had no idea what it was, but he didn't like it. It was out here in the burned forest though, so he didn't particularly care either, as long as it did not disrupt the course of nature. He listened impassively to the conversation. He had thought they were about to walk into a fight, but the conversation had an amiable tone to it, which was just as well.

  • Posted 2021-12-30 03:22:45 UTC
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  • IC: Hakari - The Charred Forest -

    "These two are Kanohi and Lapu." Hakari gestured to each one as she named them. "They don't really get along well with their vocal cords, but they can communicate other ways!" Hakari said with some enthusiasm, giving a thumbs up. "And I'm Hakari, a Lesterin of Plantlife. Thank you for the directions by the way, they're most helpful!" Hakari was speaking kind of fast, as much as she liked her companions, she hadn't realized how much she missed talking with someone who could talk with their voice, it was making her excited. 

    "I'm sure Ta-koro is a nice place, but I don't think the heat agrees with me or my friends much. Especially after nearly getting cooked in a wildfire!" 

    OOC: @capMARVELOUS @Geardirector @ARROW404 @Razgriz @Snelly

  • Posted 2021-12-30 17:56:52 UTC
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  • IC Kanohi - Ta-Wahi - the Charred Forest

    Kanohi walked back behind Hakari, not cowering behind her but letting her stand in front. After all she was the only one of the trio who could verbalize, so it only made sense she take point. His inability to speak out loud left him hardly able to contribute, same with Lapu.

    Fortunately this stranger had not seemed to identify him, that embarrassment was avoided. Though, Kanohi had not exactly realized how odd it might looks to see a Matoran of Iron wearing a collection of wooden masks, using them as shin guards, shoulder pads, chest pieces, et cetera.

    And Lapu was covered in plant life, and much like Kanohi he did not speak. But the trio was not even consistent in that, as Hakari could speak fine, and dressed more typically. Between the three of them, the Kanohi, Hakari, and Kapu sure made an “Odd Company.”

    OOC: @capMARVELOUS @Geardirector @ARROW404 @Razgriz @Snelly We have a title. 

  • Posted 2022-01-09 11:25:37 UTC
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  • IC: Zelvin (Charred Forest)

    "Everyone, a pleasure" Zelvin replied, much more focused on shepherding the two slowly recovering Skakdi up onto their feet so she could get them going. Had they tried to use their vision powers, the crystalline visors she had stuck to their faces would put a stop to that.

    "We're just in the middle of something, don't mind us" she said, as she moved across the clearing and patted the pockets and pouches she had on her person underneath her robe.

    "Mr. Highwind," she called to the guardsman who had shown her the way, "catch"

    Jolek got a small bag of something tossed his way. The way it clattered on impact made it pretty obvious what it was. Zelvin didn't seem overly concerned about the fact that she had just tossed a bag of money to someone in full view like that. She didn't rate the risks at the moment very highly.

    "A little something as thanks for your help."

  • Posted 2022-01-12 01:09:25 UTC
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  • IC:

    A small, quick blur out of the corner of his eyes, even as he held his gaze with the same quiet neutrality he'd rattled off his directions beneath upon Hakari, whose words seemed to nearly spill out of her in her excitement. Accompanying it was the jingle of metal upon metal— So I guess she means it.

    Though his gaze didn't waver, the corners of that thin, passively calm line found themselves upturned into a small smirk regardless, as his free hand swiped the flying pouch out of the air, and he felt the small discs of metal beneath the loose burlap.

    "The thanks are mine, Clench," he replied, loosing the ghost of a chuckle from his shoulders, a wan, passing hitch in the breath that left as quickly as it'd arrived. "Felt good to finally get a little action. Showed me how rusty I'm getting, so..."

    As he pocketed the pouch, the thought seemed to die on his lips. At the end of the day, where would it go from there? Was it back to the same old, same old? Knowing something was only, in his mind, as good as your ability to do something with it. Even if he was aware, more than ever, that he needed to tighten his focus back up— He knew if he kept the same doldrums hanging over his head day in and day out it'd amount to nothing. Something needed to change to get outta the cage. Either you find a bend in the bars to push for all it could handle...

    Or break it altogether. Always an option. "Not enough fights to get into, sorry."

    Hadn't been training quite as hard for a while, had he? Maybe a good bit of bareknuckle on that one tree would get his head right, bring back that necessary crispness in the form, a bit of danger to light things back up. Not the one standing silent vigil, Lapu— the one he'd kicked a fair dent into, that he'd used as a trailhead in getting here.

    Speaking of trees. And Lapu's group.

    "Forest fire, eh?" he folded his arms, shifting his weight a little in the ash as he looked Hakari and her odd little company over again. Never quite leaving stance, mind you, but serving to ease his urge to keep moving, even as he spoke. "You three coming from Le... Madu burst on a dry day? Ash's been thicker as the winds take it south recently, probably would make things go up like tinder." he ventured a guess, speaking with the particular tone that expressed personal experience.

    Worst week of his life for a good two years, that one.

    "Either way, you can just give word if you'd like a guide to the road."

  • Posted 2022-01-16 19:25:29 UTC
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  • IC: Hakari - The Charred Forest -

    "Well..." Hakari glanced back at her two companions before looking back to Jolek. "We'd appreciate a guide...if it's not too much trouble!" 

    The Lesterin wasn't sure about Kanohi and Lapu, but she had no idea where she was going! Mata Nui was so big!

    OOC: @capMARVELOUS @Geardirector @ARROW404 @Razgriz @Harvali

  • Edited on 2022-01-16 19:25:40 by Snelly
  • Posted 2022-01-17 01:37:53 UTC
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  • IC: Chiaki - Ta-Wahi - The Charred Forest
    I nod in greeting to each newcomer as the Lesterin introduces them, though with my luck I'll end up forgetting their names soon and resorting to calling them by descriptors.  Sure enough, all thought of names flies from my head as the Lesterin goes on to mention a wildfire in Le-Wahi- my home turf.  I frown.  Where in Le-Wahi, I think?  Did it get to my old village?  I suddenly feel a pang of guilt over leaving.  Even though they mistreated me for being friends with a witch, the Matoran there are still my fellows; as a Toa, isn't it my job to help my fellows and leave old misdeeds behind me?

    The merry jangle of a pouch of widgets jolts me back to the present.  It would seem that preparations have begun for the parting of ways, if the gray one offering to play guide back to Ta-Koro is anything to go by.  I move to stand beside the newcomers and nod assent, remembering that I, too, wanted to go to the Koro before I got sidetracked by the little scuffle.

    (I can't help but notice that my eyes keep drifting back to the tree man.  What was his name?  Something with an L?  I've already forgotten, perhaps due to my fascination with him overriding the common courtesy of remembering.  Again, maybe it's my sheltered upbringing, but I've never seen such a being before.  How much of him is actually tree- is it just his armor, or is it his body too?  Was he always a tree, or did he used to be a regular being?  If so, how did he become that way?  All these questions and more I want to ask him, but fortunately I retain enough common courtesy to know that asking this early into our acquaintanceship would likely be a gross invasion of privacy.)

    OOC:
    @Razgriz @Geardirector @Harvali @Snelly @ARROW404

  • Posted 2022-01-17 07:08:15 UTC
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  • IC:

    "No worries." he reassured her, returning Chiaki's nod as the Le-Toa quietly slipped himself into the group of travelers. He'd nearly, in the scuffle that'd erupted so suddenly, forgotten that the poor guy was lost too— needing a path found out just as these three were.

    That worked out easy, then. One big travelling party back through the brush from whence he'd come— even Zelvin and her quarries would likely be marching out of the forested stretch here, though he had to wonder if she intended to drive them all the way up to the frozen north or just process through Ta-Koro...

    Well, not his business, he guessed. That sorta clerical work, thankfully, was a step yet removed even from his quietly endured daily routine.

    "I don't mind this sorta thing too much— One way or another, we're all headed out the same way anyway, right?"

    He spun on his heel and began to walk, eyes on the trees.

  • Edited on 2022-01-17 07:36:50 by Razgriz
  • Posted 2022-01-19 03:48:04 UTC
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  • IC Kanohi - Ta-Wahi - the Charred Forest

    Kanohi dipped his head in thanks at Jolek, relieved to have a guide who actually knew what he was doing. Kanohi could not speak for Lapu or Hakari, but he knew his own sense of direction was poor. He had only been on Mata-Nui for …

    He shivered with unease, clicking his bracelet anxiously. The months and years blended together, he wasn’t sure how long it had been since he landed on the island of Mata-Nui. He could ask someone, folks might know if he brought up the Companions, but he did not want to be identified. He feared being found again.

    The vigilante realized the contradiction of course. After the torture he faced, the ability he had that could be exploited, he should avoid drawing attention to himself. Least he be found. But after the former Companions … did not look for him, did not try to find him, did not notice he was gone…

    Again he had no ill will to Stannis, he knew too well that his old ally was a noble hero, a great savior, he had earned his rank among the Maru, same as the rest. So for Stannis to forget Dece, clearly Dece was forgettable. Even with his abilities he did not matter, not compared to the Toa Maru. Even Aurax had been more worthy of joining the Wanderer’s Company, and he still died before he could achieve his destiny. Dece was … he never stood a chance.

    But he would still try. And while Dece was a failure and possibly a target, maybe Kanohi could be a hero. Not a great one, but he could still prove he had some value. He could not fight, not save the day, but at least he could save lives, rescue people caught in battles between true heroes and their foes. As a vigilante he could accomplish that at least.

    Kanohi then realized he had been zoning out, and blushed beneath his many layers of masks, though he continued to click his bracelet to stim. 

    OOC: @capMARVELOUS @Geardirector @ARROW404 @Razgriz @Snelly