B-Squad (6-29-18)

[WP] You have lived on earth your whole life. One morning, you wake up in the center of a modestly sized crater, as you look about you see fields of violet-tinted grass, a faint red sun in the sky overhead, and two moons in *much* closer orbit than our own. [Link to post.]

Lupe Villalobos standing around in a crater would not answer any questions. She reached up one of the sides gripping the violet grass around the upper rim of the hole. The texture of the violet grass felt the same as the green grass on Earth. The girl’s coppery hair shimmered under the moonlight that she was making a point to ignore. She scanned the large field, turning slowly and staring out along the grassy plain. 

“Whoaaaaa,” Lupe whispered to herself. Despite the situation, she marveled at the beauty of wherever she was. The sight encouraged her to face the two moons she purposely kept at her back. She turned around and found that she could still feel surprised. 

“Hi.” Underneath the two giant moons, she saw a beautiful, giant woman at least twice her size. The woman’s pale skin glowed in the blue moonlight and Lupe noticed a long red braid hanging over the front of her shoulder. She sat on a rock several feet away. The strange woman smiled at Lupe when she spoke. Lupe took a step toward her, then paused. 

“Hi,” she replied. “Where am I?” The woman chuckled, then turned her head to glanced at the twin moons. After a second she focused on Lupe again. 

“Earth,” she said with a smile. Lupe shook her head. 

“I’m from Earth.” She spread her arms wide to gesture at the field of violet grass. “It’s nothing like this.” 

“You don’t have grass?” She asked.

“Yeah. We have grass, but it’s not purple,” she said. Lupe reached down and grabbed a handful of grass blades and tossed them into the wind. Violet glimmers floated away on the breeze. 

“It’s violet,” the woman corrected her. 

“No, my grass is green. This isn’t Earth, so where am I?” The woman’s lack of hostility encouraged Lupe to step closer and she felt relieved when the stranger did not move. She decided to close the distance completely and kept walking. 

“Earth,” she repeated, then shrugged. “Just not yours.” Lupe stopped walking. Her eyes went wide and her mouth dropped open. 

“Huh?” She looked around again, then stared at her. “No way, it has to be a different planet. Earth doesn’t have two moons and pur-violet grass.”Why am I here? It has to be you because you seem to know a lot and there’s no one else around.” The woman smiled. 

“Technically it is a different planet, but it’s still the Earth of this universe. You’re quick, that’s part of why you’re here.” She cocked her head behind her. “C’mon meet the others.” She stood with easy grace making sure she did not scare the girl away, then began walking in the direction she suggested.  

“You’re special,” she began to explain, but Lupe interrupted her. 

“How do you know that? Actually, how do you know anything about me?” She asked. The woman must have heard her footsteps halt in the grass because she turned to face Lupe. She sat again, in the grass, to put the girl at ease. 

“We brought you here to have a talk. That’s it. If you’re not interested we’ll put you back on your Earth, and go our separate ways,” she said. “We didn’t talk to you on your Earth because this way makes more of an impression. We’ve been watching you for a while, and you’re pretty quick to change. I put you in that crater to distract you with questions we have the answers to and force you to listen.” 

“You brought me to a parallel universe just to talk to me?”

“Alternate, not parallel,” she said. The smile remained on her face and Lupe found herself becoming more at ease with the woman.

“What’s the difference?” she asked. 

“Proximity I guess? It’s not exactly that, but that’s the best way to put it. If we were parallel with your Earth, the grass would probably still be green.” She looked up. “There’d definitely be only one of those. The further you are from your home universe the bigger the changes.” The woman’s focus dropped to Lupe again. “But that’s not why you’re here. Although If you do stay you’ll learn all that stuff.”

“Okay. You said I’m here to listen, so I’m listening.” Lupe walked to the woman and sat in the grass next to her.

“We want to invite you to a private high-school next year,” she said. Lupe burst into laughter. 

“You’re kidding! I’m in an alternate universe because I won a scholarship???” Her laughter died down as she took in the violet field again. “It is beautiful though. I guess thanks for not just sending a letter.” The woman stood again, with less care this time. Lupe felt comfortable enough with her that the tall stranger did not need to measure every movement. She walked away again, and Lupe scrambled up off the grass to keep up with her large steps. 

“This is just where we train,” the woman said. Lupe realized she led her towards an encampment in the distance. She recognized an orange glow and saw several figures seated around the fire. “I thought it’d be a good idea to show you where you’d spend a lot of time if you decided to join up.” The woman said. Lupe made up her mind during the walk. Once the pair entered the orange glow Lupe saw a group of four kids her age, two boys and two girls. Each of the girls wore a glassy visor on their faces. One solid black on a dark haired girl, and the other translucent purple on a blonde girl. 
As they approached the four kids stood from their seats and greeted Lupe and the giant woman. 

“I’m in.” Lupe blurted out when she saw the friendly faces gathering around her. She felt a hard slap on her back from the tall woman. 

“Great to hear!” she said. The four kids stood before Lupe. The tall woman stepped forward, turned, and extended a hand to Lupe

“My name’s Flutter,” the red-headed giant said, then she turned to introduce the rest. She pointed at the blonde girl, then worked her way down the line. “Purple visor is Eurys, black visor is Abby. Green board shorts is Todd.” She gave a dismissive wave towards the fourth boy standing at the end. “And Felix.” 

“Flux,” Felix said and stepped forward to offer Lupe a handshake. #46, El Sol.”  Lupe shook the boy’s hand but looked at him with confusion.

“46? What?”  She felt a reassuring pat from Flutter on her back. 

“We’ll get to that. By the way, you’re #47, La Corona.” 

Weapons of War (4-6-18)

[WP] I didn’t want to start this fight, but I’ll finish it. [Link to post.]

“I will NOT.” Flutter growled at the kids in front of her. She stood still, though maintaining her composure took effort. 

“You think you have a choice?” Felix, the natural leader of the group, and the instigator of their revolt stepped forward from the group. He shook his head. “Ballisea’s off world, she can’t protect you.” The brown haired boy gripped his weapon tighter; his hands began to glow with a golden light. Scales formed over Flutter’s body to protect her. 

“I always have a choice,” Flutter said. Todd, a blonde boy, dropped his weapon then took a step backward leaving the two girls between him and Felix. Flutter smiled at Todd.

“Oh, they didn’t mention that I’m half dragon, did they? Good, I’m glad one of you is reconsidering.”  Abby, a dark haired girl wearing a pitch black visor over her eyes moved to grab Todd’s hand and pull him forward.  

“C’mon Todd! We can totally take her!” Abby encouraged him, then leaned forward to whisper something in his ear. Todd glanced upward in an obvious fashion and Flutter followed suit. She gasped when she saw thousands of spiders, in all varieties, streaming down from the ceiling at her. 

“Your armor won’t do you any good if you can’t move,” Abby said with a smile. The spiders began to land on Flutter’s golden scales and she brushed them off as fast as she could, but there was always more. They swarmed her, covering her tall 7′ form in crawling black and brown. Flutter had enough sense not to open her mouth, but in seconds she toppled over as the spiders encased her in layers of webbing. She wriggled on the ground trying to free herself while the four kids ran to her. 

“Nice one, Abbs,” Todd said, and they exchanged a high five. The spiders continued to wrap Flutter while on the ground tighter and tighter. Felix kicked Flutter’s prone form in the stomach. 

“You always have a choice, huh?” He kicked her again for good measure. “Not this time.” Abby lifted her weapon, but Felix held a hand up to stop her. He shook his head. 

“Eury first,” he said. 

“What? But I trapped her!” Felix nodded. 

“You did, your spiders are awesome. But we’re a team. We help each other,” he said. Felix waved the blonde girl with a purple visor over her eyes forward, and offered her his weapon. “C’mon Eury. you’re in this with us too.” She looked at Abby. The dark haired girl nodded her head and smiled in return. 

“He’s right.” Eury took the blunt weapon from Felix, and a slight smile tugged at one corner of her lips. Abby’s spiders cleared from Flutter’s wrapped body, leaving behind a large wriggling mass encased in white. Todd chuckled.

“She looks like Mundo,” he said. Eury’s smile grew, and the rest of the group laughed. The laughter was drowned out by Flutter’s scream. The two seconds the spiders did not maintain the webbing keeping Flutter contained was enough for her to tear herself free. She shredded the webbing and rushed to her feet to stare at the four slackjawed kids. The exertion took a lot out of her, but Flutter spoke through her ragged breathing.

“I didn’t want to start this fight, but I’ll finish it,” she said. The giant 7′ woman leaned down and grabbed a velvety purple pillow from the floor. “And after I win this pillow fight, it’s definitely bed time you guys.” An answer hit Flutter in the face as Eury threw her blue pillow at her. 

Circus to Circus (4-4-18)

[WP] ”Everyone here has their story” she said, looking around her. ”So what is yours?” [Link to post.]

Todd took a couple of deep breaths to relax before he pushed the solid, grey metal door open. It swung into the room easily, then he stepped across the threshold. The size of the room surprised him. When Ballisea told him to join “the others” in the cafeteria he expected a bright, wide open room filled with seats and tables. Instead he found a smallish dim room and a group of four people sitting at a round table. Dozens of pizza boxes were piled on a buffet table that sat against one of the walls. Most of the boxes looked empty and some looked older than others; it seemed like pizza was all they ate here. Todd wouldn’t complain. 

He looked over the four “others”. The first one that caught his eye was a giant pale woman with fiery red hair braided behind her. The other three looked about his age. Two girls and a boy. The blonde girl wore a translucent purple visor over her eyes, the dark haired girl wore a pitch black visor. Todd wondered how she saw through it. The boy sported a chestnut colored crewcut and wore a pair of sunglasses, but he seemed more focused on his slice of pizza than Todd’s entrance. The other three stared at him, as far as he could tell. He waved.

“Hi. Uh, I’m Todd. Ballisea told me to come introduce myself.” The giant woman stood from her seat and walked to Todd, with an outstretched hand and friendly smile.  

Hey Todd, I’m Flutter. That’s EuryAbby, and Felix.” The towering woman pointed to the the girl with the purple visor, the one with the black visor, then the boy. Todd shook her hand while staring up at her, he guessed she was at least 7′ tall. “Grab a slice, and have a seat.” Flutter said, then went back to her own seat. Todd shook his head and went straight for the table.

“No thanks, not hungry at the moment.” He sat in an empty chair between Felix and Abby. “Am I gonna get cool glasses too?” he asked. Abby chuckled. Felix started on another slice of pizza, while Eury stared at Todd. She did not so much as crack a smile. 

“Abby and Eury have their reasons, Felix just thinks he looks cool,” Flutter said. She mussed Felix’s hair, then yanked his sunglasses off while he tried to fix it. 

“Hey!” Felix said. “I’m sorry we don’t have them on my Earth.” Felix tried to snatch them from Flutter, but gave up after the third try. 

“Your Earth?” Todd asked, looking around the table. “You guys are from alternate Earths too?”

“Yep! Each one of us is from a different one. It’s awesome!” Abby said, with a large smile. Eury only nodded. 

”Everyone here has their story,” Flutter said, looking around her. ”So what’s your deal?”

“Hey I wanna hear you guys’ story too,” Todd said, looking at Eury specifically. 

“Abby is #33, La Araña. Felix is #46, El Sol. Eury is #14, La-” Flutter’s quick introduction was interrupted by Eury. 

“I’m Death.” Eury said. She stood from her seat and walked out of the room. 

“She’s still warming up to the group,” Abby said. “Which one are you?” She asked Todd. 

“#54, the frog,” Todd replied. “But, I’m already feeling kind of useless. From what Mundo told me Sol and Death are wicked powerful.”

“Oh yeah, I’m #42, La Calavera,” Flutter added. “Just to rub it in,” she smiled. “Don’t sweat it, everyone’s here for a reason.”

“I’m just a Spider, we’re on the same tier,” Abby said. “But how’d Ballisea pick you up?” 

“Uh, she bought me?” Todd shrugged, the right side of his mouth turned up in a half smirk. “My parents run a circus. We’re on the road a lot, so I’m supposed to be homeschooled. My parents never bothered with it though. Ballisea saw my act and said she wanted me to go to school, but my parents didn’t want to lose one of their biggest acts,” Todd said. He spread his arms wide and leaned forward in a mock bow. “So she asked how much it would take to convince them otherwise. They named a number, Ballisea made it happen, now I’m here.” 

“So you’re a Frog, what can you do?” Felix asked, then started on a third slice of pizza. 

“Man, you sure love that pizza,” Todd chuckled. Felix began to reply, but the mouthful of bread and cheese prevented any discernible words from leaving his mouth. 

“They didn’t have pizza on his Earth either,” Flutter said. Felix nodded vigorously while chewing. 

Choices Choices (3-21-18)

[WP] Technically, I’m a dragon. [Link to post.]

Felix sat in the corner of his darkened cell and waited. No matter how comfortable he felt sitting on the large bed, he was a prisoner. They treated him well. Instead of bars, a clear wall with air holes kept him in the pleasant prison. No torture or interrogation. Delicious food or drink any time he wanted, he only needed to ask. After the first day he assumed they were trying to starve him until he asked why he hadn’t been fed yet. 

“You didn’t ask,” his guard said. He learned her name, Flutter, the first time they met. The giant woman stood at least seven feet tall. Her pale skin made the coppery red hair atop her head even more fiery. She kept her hair in a long red braid that hung straight down her back. The first time she fed him she brought him a simple brown wooden bowl filled with a sickly white paste. The smell made him hold his breath, the taste made him retch. 

“You call this food?” Felix asked Flutter sarcastically. He emptied it into the toilet. The woman shrugged, and gave a half smirk. 

“You asked for food, I brought you food. Next time be specific.” She sat down outside his cell, put her feet up on her desk and thumbed through a book. Felix sat down on his own bed to wait for the next time. Five minutes later his stomach growled and it occurred to him that next time could be now. 

“Hey, Flutter?” He asked, using her name cautiously for the first time. She sat up quickly and looked at him through the clear divide. “What are my options?” She smiled broadly and stood up. 

“Now you’re getting it, shortstack. Anything you want, we can get,” she said. Flutter leaned against the partition with her arms crossed, waiting. Felix longed to be home. The day he met Flutter he left some taproot stew simmering in the kettle.

“How bout some taproot stew?” Felix asked. Flutter’s face lost all composure, and heavy, heaving laughs flowed from her mouth. Her body doubled over as she held her abdomen. 

“Taproot stew??!” She continued to laugh. Despite being a prisoner, Felix still somehow found his feelings could be hurt. Taproot stew was delicious, especially if he added some meat. “Talk about backwater. Kid, I’m gonna do you the biggest favor anyone will ever do for you. I’ll be back.” The giant woman turned and walked out of the room. 

A while later she returned holding two flattened square boxes stacked on top of each other. She stood at the invisible barrier, grabbed the top box then pushed it through. On the other side Felix grabbed the box and set it on his bed. Unsure what to do next, nor what Flutter’s favor actually was. She smiled at him and opened the remaining box. Inside the box Felix saw steam rising from a golden disc. The edges of the disc looked like toasted bread; bright red dots decorated the inner portion. 

“This is pizza,” Flutter said. She grabbed a toasted edge and pulled a triangle from the golden circle. She put the point in her mouth and bit. “Go ahead. Careful, it’s hot.” Felix followed her lead. He opened the box and peered in. He grabbed a toasted edge and pulled a triangle free. He never saw any food that looked like this, but it smelled amazing. He bit into it and the ecstasy forced his eyes shut. A sound he’d never made before welled up from somewhere inside him. 

“Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm….” he chewed the magical food. “I love you, Flutter.” Felix said while chewing. She giggled while eating her second slice. 

“You’re too young for me kid, but you’re pretty cool,” Flutter said. Felix wanted to know more about her. Even as she kidnapped him she treated him kinder than any kidnapper would be expected to. As his guard she remained friendly and helpful towards him. 

“How’d you get so big?” Felix asked while he pulled a second slice from the box. 

“Technically, I’m a dragon,” Flutter said. She smiled, but kept eating. Only a single slice remained in her box. 

“No you’re not! I’ve seen dragons. They’re HUGE!” Felix spread his arms wide, to emphasize how huge dragons were. Flutter stood and wiped her hands on her red silk shirt as she walked to the cell. 

“Watch,” she said. Felix watched. Felix stared at Flutter’s black eyes, but noticed a change on her forehead. The smooth, pale skin of her face began to change. Thin lines formed a pattern on her face, and it seemed her skin grew thicker around the lines. Her creamy white skin turned to gold. Her blemish free face was overtaken by rough, jagged layers. She lifted her shirt to show her stomach to Felix. He looked down and saw more golden scales covering her stomach, her arms, everywhere. 

“Whoa. You ARE a dragon!” Felix smiled, then cocked his head to the right slightly.

“How’d you get so small?” He asked. Flutter chuckled. 

“Technically, I’m a fairy.” Flutter turned around and lifted the back of her shirt completely, revealing more golden scales. Two sets of translucent, veiny dragonfly wings popped out of her back and fluttered frantically. 

“I wondered why your name was Flutter,” Felix asked with a chuckle. Flutter let her shirt fall and turned around. 

“There you go.” Over the next week Felix asked for pizza regularly, and Flutter was happy to deliver. But, he was still a prisoner. 

He sat in the corner of his darkened cell and waited. Flutter was due with lunch soon, something she called Chinese, but Felix didn’t want to be a prisoner anymore. Despite asking for food, it did not occur to him to ask to be let out. He decided he would try today. Flutter returned with two white bags. 

“Hey halfpint. Ready to chow down?” Flutter asked. She pushed a bag through the clear wall, but Felix did not rush to grab it like he normally did. 

“I’m ready to leave,” Felix said. He straightened his back to give himself a boost of confidence.  Flutter dropped the bag on the inside of his cell and pulled her hand out. 

“Finally. You’ve got two choices. Join Ballisea or join Ballisea.” Flutter sat down at her desk and pulled out several small white and red boxes from the bag, one after the other. 

“That’s not much of a choice,” Felix said. Flutter nodded.

“May not seem like it, but it’s important which one you choose. One is willingly the other is…less willingly, more painful.” 

“Which did you choose?” Felix asked. Flutter stared toward the other end of the room, and answered Felix with a cold, sad tone.

“It hurts. A lot.” Felix looked down at the dark cobblestone floor of his cell. He felt bad for his friend. 

Bright Light! Bright Light! (3-6-18)

[WP] In a world where manipulating the four elements is common, you come from a line of light users, a magic thought extinct. One day you come across a deadly situation and your powers must be used. [Link to post.]

Felix walked along the side of the dirt road towards town. The blue sun peeked out of the horizon, ready to start the day. He stayed on the outside of the road to avoid bumping into anyone or being trampled by a cart. Felix preferred solitude, and only made the trip to town when necessary, usually once a month. He always did it invisibly. He discovered his light magic at age seven, and in the seven years since then he learned to bend light around himself. He hated to steal, but was afraid that if he left money regularly someone might notice the pattern. He assumed theft would be less suspicious.

Felix reached the outskirts of town as the sun found its footing in the sky. He felt glad there had been no rain recently, he hated to contend with leaving footprints in the mud. He turned a corner toward the store he picked to steal from this particular month. Along the way he passed an alley between an inn and a brothel. As a 14 year old boy that could turn invisible, he knew all about the brothel. Fisticuffs often broke out there, and the Madam tended toss troublemakers out into that same alley. He heard a familiar ruckus, and it sounded like that situation was playing out right now. Someone just got thrown into the inn’s trash cart. Curiosity struck him when he realized the day just started. The women weren’t even working yet, and most of their clientele would still be sleeping off the previous night. 

“Help! SOMEONE HELP!” A man yelled, and Felix moved to the entrance of the alley. He saw a giant red headed woman with pale skin, not one of the workers he was familiar with, angrily holding down a red faced fat man in the trash and laughing hysterically.

“SHE’S GOING TO KILL ME!!” The main flailed his short arms and legs, trying to somehow leverage his girth to wriggle free. Felix looked left and right in a panic, turning his head back and forth several times. He hoped to see a sign of anyone that might have enough magic to help. The roads were empty. It was too early for anyone to really be on the streets, and the chances were slim it would be someone with magical training. 

I’m the only help this guy’s getting,” Felix thought to himself. He knew he could easily help, but he could not stay invisible while doing it. He turned left and right one more time, checking for any sudden wanderers. “I’ll have to blind both of them,” he decided.

Felix looked up at the situation again as he walked forward. The woman now held a glowing green sword above the fat man’s neck. 

“So long, Chuck.” The woman said, then she pulled the green blade upward to gain momentum. Felix was now close enough to act. He let loose a giant flash of white light between both of them. It surprised the two strangers.

“AAH!! I’M DEAD!!” The fat man yelled, thinking he entered the light. He stayed still, his hands resting on his stomach. Felix noticed his right hand showed a red tattoo of the number 1 on it. 

“Gah!” The giant woman dropped the sword and brought her hands to her eyes. She rubbed them to get her sight working again. “You little asshole!” She said with a combination of anger and annoyance. Felix dashed toward the trash cart. He grabbed the man’s thick, tattooed hand, then whispered into his ear. 

“I’ll lead you out of here.” Chuck turned his head toward the whisper, and Felix saw the pupils of his dark green eyes were little more than pinholes.

“WHO SAID THAT?” Chuck yelled, then squeezed Felix’s hand. 

“sshhhhhh.” Felix tried to shush Chuck. 

“WHO ARE YOU?? DID YOU BLIND ME??” Chuck squeezed Felix’s hand tighter.

“I’m *trying* to help you, idiot!” Felix hissed the words at Chuck. He tried pulling, but the fat man was too heavy for Felix to move without Chuck himself helping. “Hurry up it’s going to wear off soon.” Felix didn’t understand why they weren’t running away yet. He decided Chuck was an idiot, but wanted to help him anyway. Felix concentrated and tried to form sunlight into something useful. He’d been experimenting with hard light, but still had a long way to go until he could do it reliably. He hoped the stress of the situation would help it kick in. 

“Hey, it’s wearing off,” Chuck said, surprised. Felix opened his eye to see Chuck blinking repeatedly. 

“*This guy’s beyond saving,*” Felix thought. He decided to blind them both again and flee on his own. He gave off a fresh burst of white light, and Chuck let his hand go. 

“DAMNIT! STOP THAT!” Chuck yelled and rubbed his eyes. Felix turned to leave, and ran into the giant woman’s stomach. Her eyes were closed, but she opened them when she felt the boy run into her. She looked down at him through dark black eyes. She palmed his face in her large hand. 

“Hi. We’ve been looking for you,” she said. Felix did not move a muscle. The woman’s grip felt overly delicate, like she was actively trying *not* to crush his skull. Felix heard the fat man move behind him, finally getting himself off the cart. Felix realized she said, “we”, and sighed. 

“Geeez. Take it easy next time, Flutter,” Chuck said. He reached into the tattoo on his hand and pulled out a black crystal. He tossed it at the ground and a black hole appeared in the dirt.
“Hold on little guy,” Flutter said, then jumped into the hole while holding him.