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Wanderlust

Discussion in 'General Role Play' started by Chadwyck, Jun 24, 2010.

  1. OoC: Okies everybody, please PM me if you'd like to join. It's a sorta mixture of a few different ideas that I just sorta came up with while sitting around at work today. So far it's Me and Sem, so there are openings for TWO and only TWO others. PM me with a draft of your first post and I'll tell you if you're in after looking at all the potentials.

    BiC:

    LOG IN: COMPLETE….DIGITALIZATION PROCESS: COMPLETE… YOU ARE NOW BEING INSERTED; ANY PAIN YOU MAY EXPERIENCE IS REGRETTABLE BUT UNAVOIDABLE… CONSCIOUSNESS DOWNLOAD: COMPLETE. APPEARANCE DOWNLOAD: COMPLETE.

    “Welcome to Wanderlust, where your imagination because a whole new reality.” A woman’s voice spoke from nowhere in particular as the young man was drifting through an infinite blackness that seemed to swallow him completely. He felt weightless, but knew that feeling would soon fade. Once inside the game, it would be as real as, well, reality. No sitting at a computer, staring at the monitor and tapping away at a keyboard; this game inserted your mind into the world. When it said your imagination was a whole new reality, it meant it in the most literal sense.

    Suddenly the darkness was ripped away, rapidly being replaced by the view of a lush green field surrounded by hills. Trees lined the outside of the clearing, along with flowers and different assorted shrubs; it looked as if he had been inserted into a picturesque postcard of some long forgotten wilderness. What’s more, he could actually feel the wind and smell the wet grass as the world materialized around him. It wasn’t some simulated setting, that was confirmed when his feet finally made contact with the ground, firm beneath his feet. This was definitely real.

    The young man took a deep breath of the crisp, clean air. He knew that his actual body was sitting lifeless somewhere in the real world, inside a capsule that contained the game. Wanderlust didn’t take anything into it but your mind, constructing a new body out of different programs and inserting your consciousness into it. The complexity of the game itself was astounding, let alone the programs that went into creating the players ‘avatars’ and the abilities that they possessed.

    “Please state your name.” The woman’s voice said again, asking for a simple gesture to log the player’s voice, face, and playtime. That way, if he were to log out and return, his items and achievements would be retained.

    “Scott Kennedy.” The young man said with a smile, the only reply he got was a light beeping noise and fingerless gloves materializing on his hands, beginning as nothing but binary code and then fading into existence. The gloves weren’t simply for fashion, they were his player interface; all he’d have to do to use it would be to hold his palms up toward the sky to open a screen, then he would be able to type out messages to other players and check his various stats and inventory. To close the screen again, he simply had to grab the edges of the screen and press his hands together.

    Aside from the gloves, he was dressed very simply. He was in a black tee shirt with electric blue designs all across it; faded blue jeans and an electric blue hoodie that with black designs that matched those on his shirt. On his feet were white trainers that lacked any special marks or designs aside from the blue shoelaces. His hair was straight, short and dark brown; the fringe barely covered his hazel eyes. “Well,” Scott said simply after the flashy log in had finally completed, “Hell of a long install, but it looks to be well worth it.” He smiled as he looked down.

    Beside his feet was a medium sized black case. It wasn’t quite a suitcase or an instrument case, it definitely wasn’t a coffin either, it was just a square case that didn’t look to be important at all. Sitting on top of the case was a key-ring with eleven keys on it. Each key was slightly different in appearance, though they weren’t easy to tell apart, except for one that had a skull on it. The Skeleton Key. “Awesome!” Scott exclaimed as he picked the case up, it felt lighter than he expected, and he cupped the keys in his other hand, “It’s exactly the way I imagined it. I had no idea when it asked for a weapon idea it would followed my outline this specifically.” He spoke happily to himself, a habit that he had picked up years ago.

    “The best thing about Wanderlust,” all the reviewers had said, “Is the ability to do or have anything that you can imagine. If there’s a weapon that you’ve always wanted to be skilled with, you simply have to imagine it and it will be yours. If there is an ability you wish to possess, that’s within your grasp as well,” Now Scott knew what they meant, of course there was a catch, aside from the item you begin with, which was a freebie, anything else you’d like had to be searched for, acquired only through the item forges.

    When you found an item token, the rarest and most sought after item in the game, you had to take it to a forge; then you just tossed the token into the fire and it would create anything you wanted. Whether that be a weapon, armor, treasures, or even magic abilities such as flight or invisibility. The purpose of the game was to do whatever you wanted to, one simply wandered from place to place doing quests or entering tournaments, anything and everything.

    That wasn’t the reason Scott had joined the game, however, he had been scouted and hired by Wanderlust Incorporated to track down a group of hackers who had entered the game in order to take control of the server and hold it for ransom. While there were ways to hinder their progress, it was only a matter of time before they broke through the system defenses. The game had a registered three billion players. That was three billion minds linked together, if something were to happen to the games servers while they were connected, the results would be disastrous. In that way, if the hackers, whom in this instance were more akin to terrorists, got control of the game then the company would have no choice but to meet any demands to keep players safe.

    As this game was in every sense real, it was possible for one to die while playing. The risk was astronomical, but there were ways that the Corporation attempted to protect players. There were isolated areas of the game where fighting amongst players was legal, in those areas you were fighting for your life. “Of course, this isn’t a game for the faint of heart. One can only access the game after essentially signing away one’s life,” The reviewers continued, ”As Wanderlust is in some ways just as real as the world in which we live, death within the game results in death in reality. Naturally, Wanderlust Incorporated has done everything in their power to limit player deaths; however it is a natural occurrence that cannot be helped. The body lives but the mind dies, meaning that there is no way to return to reality.” This didn’t deter the flow of people to the game, in fact, in some ways it attracted more players. People who weren’t interested or lacked the skills to defend themselves from other players and NPCs simply remained in cities or populated areas where there was no threat of being attacked. Most players didn’t attack each other, out of fear of being outmatched, anyway, so the threat of that was low as well. But the hackers changed that, they would attack people anywhere at any time.

    “Scott Kennedy, you have been granted moderator status. You and three others have been inserted to actively pursue these criminals. Detain them by any means necessary.” The woman spoke again after a moment, “You will rendezvous with the others at Port Haven in three hours, the city is due west.”

    “Three hours gives me some time to practice with this thing,” He said looking at his case, he took the first of the keys and inserted it into the case’s lock. He set the box up, as if laying it on a table, in front of him in the air where it stayed suspended above the ground. He turned the key and the box opened with a click; golden light began to pour from the case as Scott reached in and pulled two pistols with small blades attached to the barrels. As the pistols came out, the case disappeared.

    Scott got a feel for the pistols, and then opened fire on the nearby trees, blowing branches off with precise aim. It was as if he’d trained with pistols his whole life, when in actuality, thanks to his moderator status within the game, his mind had been programmed to know precisely how to use each and every weapon that the keys would produce. With a flick of his wrists the guns vanished and the case and key-ring took their place in his grasp. “This is even better than expected.” Scott said with a smirk as he set off toward Port Haven.
     
  2. Sem

    Sem The Last of the Snowmen
    Former Administrator

    “Noah!” came the shrill cry of a woman. Her voiced echoed within the large hallway, whose floors were creamy marble with dark beige walls and a white ceiling with ornate carvings. “Don’t do this thing,” she said with a huff, following after a young man.

    “Gabriella…” he answered as he walked briskly in front of her. He was dressed very nicely, in a cream blazer with cream slacks and a light blue dress shirt. The young man, Noah, was dressed to the nines, looking very much like the young master of the mansion. He skin was pale, and he had light brown hair, styled short in the back and bit longer in the front – the fringe was slicked off to the side. He looked like a boy still, but he was actually twenty-one. “You worry too much, really,” he told the maid with a wave of his hand and in his light and smooth voice.

    “But… Señior,” she said, hesitating and choosing her words as she picked up her pace in order to walk by his side. “You already risk your life every time you play that game,” she held his arm firmly and stopped him as they went down a short flight of steps, forcing him to turn around. “This time, with this… assignment, you may never come back.”

    “Gabriella, dear,” he said softly, putting his hand on her arm. She reluctantly let go of his, allowing him to continue walking. “They sought me out because I am good at playing the game and because I’m good with my abilities, abilities which may come in handy in order to stop these… terrorists.” he said the word with mild distaste.

    They entered a room which seemed to only contain a pod, large enough to hold a person.

    “If you don’t come back I will bury you in that thing,” she told him, pointing at the machine in disgust. “It’s already like a coffin to me.”

    “I wouldn’t want anything less, m’dear,” he answered her as he walked up to the machine, turning the device on. The pod opened and he sat himself inside of it, smiling in satisfaction at the comfortable material for the seat. The original material used had not been to his tastes, and so he paid to have it replaced.

    He placed the many sensors onto various parts of his body, most of them being on his head. Once he felt he was settled he activated the device, causing his world to go black.

    -------

    LOG IN: COMPLETE….DIGITALIZATION PROCESS: COMPLETE… YOU ARE NOW BEING INSERTED; ANY PAIN YOU MAY EXPERIENCE IS REGRETTABLE BUT UNAVOIDABLE… CONSCIOUSNESS DOWNLOAD: COMPLETE. APPEARANCE DOWNLOAD: COMPLETE.

    ”Welcome back, Noah Butler,” echoed the disembodied voice of a woman that seemed to surround him.

    The darkness was soon driven away, replaced by new scenery. It was a city, with tall skyscrapers and thousands upon thousands of people walking the streets. There were people of various colors, some even unnatural, with a variety of outfits all mingling and playing in the vast world that they called Wanderlust.

    Noah himself looked very much like his real self, minus the outfit. He wore a nice white jacket with the sleeves rolled up. He wore a plain black t-shirt and a pair of tight dark-wash jeans. His shoes were simple black Converse with white midsoles, which he wore because they were vintage. Around his waist was tied a blue sash, and a watch was on his left wrist. On his face rested a pair of oversized sunglasses. It was with those sunglasses that he could access his player interface, which would project itself before him and then use a combination of touch and blinking to work.

    ”Noah Butler, you have been granted moderator status,” the woman began. Noah nodded with a satisfied grin, knowing that he could now control his abilities to an even finer extent than he could already, and also stand up against much more.

    ”You and three others have been inserted to actively pursue these criminals. Detain them by any means necessary. You will rendezvous with the others at Port Haven in three hours, the city is due South.”

    ”Well,” he said as he accessed his inventory, selecting one of his favorite items and summoning it. He blinked, closing the inventory and then looked at his object. It was a hoverbike, black and sleek. Not terribly good for off-road, or even travel outside of the city environment, but it worked fine so long as there was a road. He activated the bike with a touch of his hand as he straddled it and in seconds he was off, moving quickly and almost noiselessly through the streets towards Port Haven.
     
    #2 Sem, Jun 24, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2013
  3. "Leave me alone!" The yell echoed across the alleyway as a girl at around 17 years bolted out of it into the brighter sunlight of the main street. Clutching her bag in her arms, Marie ran down the streets, weaving in and out of the crowd as her tears streamed down her fairly pale face. Her slight frame allowed her to work easily around the people whilst her blue eyes reflected her anxious self through thick-rimmed glasses. As she took her last turn, she slowed down, taking furtive looks behind her every so often. They had found her again. They always did, and she wished they would go away, leave her alone. She had just barely made it this time without getting hurt, but the words always stung her face with timidity. She turned onto a small house that she modestly owned. It was white, with a few windows, but most importantly, it was safe. As the key turned the lock in the door, she entered the house. It wasn't exactly much, just a small kitchen and other necessities. Grandmother was likely upstairs, sleeping. She usually is nowadays. While her parents were away, Marie was charged with watching her grandmother's health. Setting her bag down upon the table, she wiped her face with a napkin she had left there in the morning, and went down to her heaven, the basement.

    Marie eagerly trotted down the steps to her room in her plain old long sleeve shirt and jeans. The place was rather plain, mostly a lamp, desk, and a bed. But she certainly was not aiming to use those things. Instead she strolled over to the out of place pod like object in the corner. It was a gift from a friend, and it had turned out to be more like a necessity. She hopped inside it after doing all the usual things, with all those fancy sensors. She didn't flinch at all as her vision blanked out, it was routine. Marie didn't really hear that much of that woman's stuff anymore, her excitement drowned out most of the non-essential robot voices.

    "Welcome back, Odette Bisset."

    She knew she had fabricated a whole new identity for herself. She tried to avoid facing such truth, but Marie never wanted to think about real life while playing. As such, Marie looked completely different. She was Odette, a chakram-wielding tailor, who placed curses and enchantments upon what she made on a whim. Her interface came through her accessories, although they varied upon each time she logged in. It was a hell of an ability to find, but she managed to track it down and claim it for her own. This time, a nice shining locket would do the job. It opened up to allow her access to the menu and other such important things. Her arms, connected to each other by a cloth that looped around her back, had a complexion of a slight tan, but still mostly light. She tipped her white and red patterned bowler hat up a bit so as to allow her vision to shine through her neck-length blonde hair. Her body was covered by a sleeveless white dress with a red pattern running along the bottom and heading up a side, which flowed gracefully as Odette moved her hips. This time, however, she had heard a new voice.

    "Odette Bisset, you have been granted moderator status," Hearing this, Odette's hazel eyes lit up as she listened further. "You and three others have been inserted to actively pursue these criminals. Detain them by any means necessary. You will rendezvous with the others at Port Haven in three hours, the city is due South." In light of this, Odette smiled a bit. The whole deal sounded exciting, although she was well aware of the consequences of failure, the whole situation, to be frank. Examining her surroundings, she was indeed near Port Haven. Odette had been there before, she had set up shop there during a festival or something at one time. Everything she made was of lovely quality, although their properties varied depending on who she sold it to. Odette found it to be a great game to do so.

    The tall women took off towards the Port, running at a far faster speed than other people. Her shoes were a plain white, however the ruby laces seemed to sparkle as her feet took each step. She had made them out of lightweight threads she had found from a nice respectable vendor in some place or the other, and it made her feel like she was running on air, which if one looked closely, she was moving around a half an inch above the ground. she gripped her hat with one hand to keep it on her head, and took off to the port through the nice meadows.
     
    #3 Tangrow, Jun 26, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2013
  4. Between this and a bottle of booze, he often times found more happiness at the back of his immersion pod than he did find it at the bottom of the bottle of hooch. He locked the pod shut, and attached all the necessary sensors. He closed his eyes as he did so. He didn't want to see his reflection.


    LOG IN: COMPLETE….DIGITALIZATION PROCESS: COMPLETE… YOU ARE NOW BEING INSERTED; ANY PAIN YOU MAY EXPERIENCE IS REGRETTABLE BUT UNAVOIDABLE… CONSCIOUSNESS DOWNLOAD: COMPLETE. APPEARANCE DOWNLOAD: COMPLETE.

    ”Welcome back, Arthur Reeves,” echoed the disembodied voice of a woman that seemed to surround him.

    "You have been granted moderator status," It spun off for near the thirtieth time. For a program claiming to be perfect in every way, that was one glitch in his program that just annoyed the piss out of Arthur.

    The program shot him straight into his usual seat, arms folded across the railing of the bridge, legs dangling above the water. The twenty-something man removed himself from the entanglement of the rails he put himself in and stood up. He tugged down on his brown, pinstriped vest to remove some wrinkles. It smoothed out nicely and he adjusted the gold pocket hanky, to look presentable. In a word, his game avatar was everything he wasn't in real life. Smooth. Beautiful Burnt Auburn hair combed perfectly to the right, half-rimmed gold glasses hanging low on his nose, a gold pocket watch in his black slacks and polished shoes, the loose white dress shirt that perfectly accented the outfit, and his smooth, unbroken face. A face he didn't mind having stare him back in the mirror. He pulled out the golden pocket watch from his pocket, playing with the Casino-Themed coat of arms on the back as he flipped it open. A menu popped up, and a familiar message appeared, the same one he'd read before he stopped to have lunch.

    You and three others have been inserted to actively pursue these criminals. Detain them by any means necessary. You will rendezvous with the others at Port Haven in three hours, the city is due South.”

    "Oh great," he muttered underneath his breath. Even his voice was slathered in a thick coating of charm and class. "I've got to meet three other, most likely brand new, moderators to track down a few hackers that can bend the code of the game. Today's going to be amazing. I can tell." He flipped the pocket watch closed, and placed it back in his pocket. As instinct, he retrieved his deck of cards from his pocket, and began shuffling them. His deck was that of a Tarot Deck, and every card you pulled from it created what was on the card, save for everything above the 3's of objects. They produced different results, though they were a complex gaggle of them and were hard to correctly communicate. He didn't see the girl whatsoever, when he stepped out into the middle of a supposedly clear pedestrian avenue towards Port Haven, but as the footsteps got closer, he heard them. He turned around immediately to find himself plowed into by a small girl in glitzy-looking red-laced white shoes. Arthur's deck of cards scattered above him, but they automatically retreated into a tight deck, and slid itself back into Arthur's hand. A pleasant secondary effect of the weapon. He drew himself up, and held out a hand to the young-looking girl.

    "Need a hand?" He offered charmingly. "My name is Arthur."
     
    #4 Kalseng, Jun 26, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2013
  5. Scott was having a particularly uneventful trip to Port Haven, apparently wandering through the wilderness that he had been inserted into was less dangerous than it would be in other games. It was understandable, having been placed in the forest as a starting point, that there would be next to nothing to worry about. After all, joining a game that risked your life and coming under attack immediately after joining the world of Wanderlust would result in many unprepared players meeting their untimely deaths. What this place was probably used for, if it were following the basic MMORPG formula, was to get a feel for the world and how the game was to be played. Though, it seemed sort of unnecessary since it was more or less reality, at least that's how the mind perceived it.

    The young man spun the keys around the index finger of his left hand before stuff them into his jumper pocket, he set the case down on the ground and opened his hands with his palms facing skyward, opening his user interface. "Map." He said simply, causing the imagery on the screen to show his current location on an overworld view. "Good, I'm not too far from Port Haven now, should be there ahead of schedule." He grabbed the edges of the screen and collapsed them, causing the interface to close with a small clicking noise. He grabbed his group of keys again and resumed spinning them about, when there was a rustling in the bushes around him. Out of the bushes stepped stereotypically dressed bandits, dressed in clothes of varying degrees of raggedness, and almost all wearing a bandanna. There were only five of them, but judging by the identical dress and the way they emerged, they were almost definitely NPCs. Still, Scott thought it better to ask, "I take it you're here to rob me? Before you do that, I'd like to know, you aren't human players, correct?"

    "Hand over your money and you won't have to die." Was the only response, muttered with slightly different wording by all of them. Judging by their lack of interest in his question and their intent on robbing someone in the middle of nowhere, it was obvious they weren't human players. Since he was nearing the city, the game obviously meant to introduce him to combat by sending incompetent enemies at him. More than likely they weren't even programmed to kill him if he wasn't able to fight back.

    "Well, that's good to know," He said with a smile before they all took basic brawling stances, "No weapons? Fine, let's at least make it fair then." He placed his weapons' case on the ground and pocketed the keys once more, taking a fighting stance as well. The five men rushed him, though in actuality only one attacked him at a time. Basic beginning-of-the-game tactics. The first man threw a punch aimed for his face, Scott deflected the punch off to the side and used the man's momentum against him, colliding his fist with the man's nose. The second man attacked with a leg sweep, Scott jumped into the air to avoid it and kicked the man in the face as he flew over him. "Two down, three to go." He said as he landed, this time not waiting to be attacked first he kicked one of the bandits in the stomach, palmed another in the nose and brought the last one's face into his knee. Within a course of only a few seconds, the group of men had been incapacitated successfully. Scott picked up his case and continued on his way, still twirling his keys on the index finger of his left hand, leaving a group of men writhing in pain in his wake. "Oh, relax," He sighed without turning around, "I barely touched you. Though, I suppose you're simply reacting the way you're programmed to. Sorry, constructs." He chuckled and disappeared into the thicket of trees.

    While it was true that Scott Kennedy was not an experienced player of Wanderlust, he'd never been keen on giving it a try. Not for fear of losing his life, but from fear of becoming addicted. After all, there were people who spent days on end in their pods, some even months. Their earthly bodies becoming frail and weak from lack of movement, surviving only because they were being sustained by the pod itself. But Scott's lack of experience in this particular game didn't mean that he was a new player, on the contrary, he was actually a skilled fighter in reality, given even more skill by the fact that he had become a moderator; thereby enhancing his physical characteristics such as speed, strength and reflex through the mechanisms within the game. He had been scouted by Wanderlust Inc. for the skill he had shown in other games, as well as his real life abilities with hand to hand combat and basic weapon trainings, both also enhanced by the upgrade to moderator. And his background as a former hacker himself made him a good choice to track down the criminals, though he had a sneaking suspicion that the others would be paying close attention to him. Not that it mattered, he gave up hacking a few years ago, so they wouldn't have anything to fear from him.

    Scott was shaken from his thoughts when he heard the sounds of civilization drawing closer, and as he emerged from the trees, he saw the city of Port Haven. It was still a little ways off, about another thirty minute walk, but he could smell the salt of the ocean and he could feel the sea breeze, so he didn't mind the walk too much. Soon he would be meeting the other members of the team, and they could get to work on tracking down the terrorists. With three billion lives on the line, there wasn't much time to waste. He started passing other players, coming and going from the city, there were a lot of people in this one city. Though, again that was to be expected, with the exception of the hackers, there was no threat to being attack in the cities, still it made discerning the hackers from the normal players even more tedious.

    At the city gates, there was a man dressed as a police officer, he quickly scanned every member of the game who passed by, though he did it without drawing too much attention to himself. There hadn't been a public announcement of the hackers, the company was trying to avoid a mass panic, and there hadn't been an open attack. Yet. "Mister Kennedy," The police officer said as Scott approached, "So good to see you made it all right."

    "Ah, an NPC programmed to look for suspicious activity?" Scott asked approaching the man.

    "Not quite, sir. I've been hired as basic security. Not quite as powerful as a moderator, I'm mostly here to be on the lookout for you know who." The man said, looking rather nervous, "Of course, I'm just meant to report to you if I see anything."

    "Oh, right. Well, sorry, I just assumed that they'd have a program watching the gates. Though, I guess that these aren't normal circumstances." Scott shook the man's hand.

    "I'm supposed to tell you that you and the others are to meet at the Illuminate Cafe, right on the waterfront. That way, it's an easy landmark for each of you to find." The man said with a smile.

    "Okie dokie, thanks a lot... uhm..."

    "Jonathan, sir."

    "Right. Thanks, Jon." Scott walked through the gate and straight to the cafe, deciding not to take in the sights, he had a job to do after all. Though, the city was amazing. It was incredibly modern, with tall buildings that were glistening and streamline. Automatic window-washers cleaned a few of the buildings while some people whizzed about in the air, "Seriously, who'd waste their free item on flight. Lot of good that'd do you in a fight." Scott rolled his eyes as he continued along the busy streets, finally taking a seat outside of his destination. Immediately a waiter appeared.

    "Can I get you anything, sir?" The waiter asked very formally.

    "Just a glass of water." Scott replied, setting his case at his feet and stretching after the waiter had gone. "I do hope the others get here soon." He sighed, staring out at the waves lapping up on the beach.
     
    #5 Chadwyck, Jun 26, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2013
  6. Sem

    Sem The Last of the Snowmen
    Former Administrator

    OOC: Yeah, no excuse for this taking so long. Here it is finally.

    BIC:
    The scenery was but a blur on the back of a motorcycle. Trees and fields were blurs of green and there was a continuous streak of white down the center of the road. Noah weaved back and forth, going around slower vehicles, though they tended to travel quickly as well. A car crash in the game was fatal, but because it was a game people tended to take more risks behind the wheel in-game than they would in real life.

    Noah really had no way to justify his speeding. He was well aware of how dangerous it was, but the rush was just too alluring to ignore. The experience was only enhanced by his new status of moderator.

    He slowed as he neared Port Haven, coming to a stop by a police officer monitoring traffic.

    “Noah Butler,” the man addressed him.

    “Afternoon, officer,” Noah replied with a flirty grin.

    The officer ignored him. “Riding without a helmet again I see…”

    “Life isn’t life unless it’s on the edge,” the young man shot back haughtily. “What’s up, Popo?”

    “The four of you will be meeting in the Illuminate Café – one of them has already arrived,” he said. “And… it’s Jonathan by the way.” The two had met once before and the officer hadn’t given out his name.

    Noah shook his head. “I don’t remember names well, but whatever you say officer.”

    With a wave of his hand the motorcycle revved and he was off again, traveling at a much more reasonable speed through the city. Illuminate Café was a place he frequented, so he knew the city well. He pulled up right in front of the establishment, dismounting his bike as it disintegrated into a flurry of pixels.

    He watched a wave crash on the beach before walking inside with an air of confidence, smiling as the rush of air conditioned air blew on his face.

    “Welcome back, Mr. Butler,” an NPC said, recognizing Noah. “What can I get you?”

    The boy nodded to the program. “I’ll have a cosmo if you don’t mind,” he said before lowering his shades and peering over the rims at the people seated about the restaurant. None of these people seemed to be the ones he was looking for. He waved at a few familiar faces before turning around to go back outside.

    Looking again he homed in on a character dressed very street. He seemed to be about Noah’s age and he had in his possession a large case. The only thing on the table was a glass of water.

    ”There’s my guy…” he mused to himself as he made his way over, a waiter not far behind.

    “You really should try what I’ve got here, hun,” he said as he slid into the chair across from the young man. The waiter set Noah’s drink down on the table. Noah took it, swirling the liquid in the glass flute as he lifted it in the guy’s direction before taking a drink. Alcohol usually didn’t have much of an effect in-game for safety reasons. It only served to give you a slight buzz most of the time. Of course, there were controlled places where you could get drunk, but that got old after a while.

    “My name’s Noah, Noah Butler,” he introduced himself, extending his hand. “And I guess now we’re just waiting for number three and number four…”
     
    #6 Sem, Jul 1, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2013
  7. When Odette is focused, she gets focused. The girl made this decision a few years back, when she played those games that have all sorts of achievements. It got to be too much for her, so she decided to rudely ignore all other tasks until the one she was going for was done. She would even ignore the crying child that needed to be saved if she was busy collecting bananas for the weird old merchant. This carried over everywhere else as well, and as such, Odette didn't notice when she ran straight into this random man in the street, resulting in herself being knocked over and her hat flying off her head, landing in the street. It was run over by a car thereafter. Due to this development, Odette was rather annoyed and simply brushed off the this fancy man's hand and his fancier cards. Instead, she picked herself up to her feet, and began her tirade.

    "Excuse me, where do you think you come off knocking into me when I'm utterly busy! Certainly I don't need a hand you creep, and you even got my nice hat flattened!" As she uttered these words, the cloth wrapped on her wrists glowed a lovely shade of green, which spread to he tattered hat in the road. It was quickly pulled into Odette's hands. Without allowing the man a word in edgewise, she kept spewing words. "I'm on a terribly busy schedule and I certainly don't need some fancypants man in my way on this very important day," She ripped off some cloth from her own and pressed it onto her hat, which caused it to reform to its original round shape. "And now, if you'll excuse me, I will be taking my leave." With a little 'Hmph!' noise, she was on her way yet again, but this time, she was quite a bit slower in pace as the cloth she ripped off earlier reformed itself, as if invisible hands were stitching it back together.

    Shortly thereafter, Odette spied the gates to Port Haven in the distance. She slowed herself to a jog, then a trot, and settled on a brisk walking pace as she passed by the gates. She would have missed the police officer standing guard if she hadn't called out to Odette.

    "Excuse me, Miss, you get back here immediately!" She spoke in a rather loud tone and was a tall women with graying hair and sharp brown eyes. She was dressed in garb, wearing pants and all the other stuff. You could have mistaken her for a man if it wasn't for her long hair. Regardless of, Odette made a quick roundabout and backtracked to the women.

    "Um, yes, lady? I wasn't doing anything wrong." Odette had said this in an annoyed fashion, causing the officer to become equally irritated and irate,

    "You're one of the moderators, so please head off to the Illuminate Café posthaste. Two of them are already there, so do make haste and don't be late." With this, the aging woman shooed off Odette, who was too eager to take leave anyway. With a destination in mind, she...got lost. After asking a few people, she headed off to the waterfront.

    Odette bumbled around the waiters and people a bit before seemingly finding her correspondents. After failing a few times and leaving confused looks behind at each table, she tried the last table, which seated two people as of now and left two more empty chairs. Odette took the third, and sat down. "Okay okay, you two are the other two, right? I keep messing up...oh, right, I'm Odette Bisset. I'll just have something like a shirley temple, I never have time to have them." She added the last bit to the waiter who had arrived, whom then quickly took leave inside the establishment. "Right so, uh, the last guy, we're waiting for him then? Unless I'm wrong. Eheheh." She chuckled nervously as she took the drink from the waiter whom had returned.
     
  8. Any other young girl in the world would have gladly accepted his hand, but this young girl seemed to have a particular penchant for burning bridges until there wasn't even any oxygen nearby. She ran off towards Port Haven, speeding past as her clothes mended themselves automatically. She'd get there fast enough, but Arthur wasn't one for walking to far places like the Port. He jumped up onto the stone railing of the bridge, and pulled the top card from his Tarot Deck. The card he wanted was drawn, and he threw it out in front of him, face up. It spun around until it hung in midair, spreading into a three foot long square. It flashed white, and stepped onto the floating white panel. It flashed back to its original art, a picture of a man riding in a horse-drawn chariot. The picture face rose up in various spots, morphing and twisting around Arthur, until finally forming the transportation device of his choice.

    The device was an interesting hybrid of a jet plane and a motorcycle. Arthur sat back in the seat, gripping the black handles and placing two feet down on the pedals. It had a pair of engines coming out of the back, and a small set of wings branching off either side of the frame. Arthur plugged his deck into the ignition, and the black chariot fired up, a small wave of heat forming on the back of the engines. He pressed down on the right pedal, and the motorcycle zoomed forward, rising up above the heads of pedestrians, but not above the buildings. Arthur turned the vehicle back onto the streets, gliding noiselessly over the heads of the other player characters. The trip to Port Haven was severely cut down, and Arthur ended up hovering above the quiet water outside of a café. He stood up from his chariot, and jumped over the railing. His deck disengaged itself from the device, and his chariot flashed back into the Major Arcana card it originally was. The deck slid the card back into place, and zipped over into Arthur's hand. He spied a table of a few other player characters, each appearing to match the images of the new moderators that he'd received a few days prior.

    Arthur walked over to the table, removing the last chair and sitting down at his place. He looked over at the two men and one woma-

    "You!" Arthur declared excitedly, a childish smile spreading across his face. "You were the girl I ran into earlier! I must apologize for that. I really should watch where I'm going." He turned back to the other two, and scratched the back of his neck absently. "Arthur Reeves," He said with a familiar charm. "I'm the fourth moderator of this little task force. Assuming we're all interested in catching this hacking player, where should we begin?" A waiter walked up to him, and offered a drink. "Lemonade please? Pink." Arthur smiled at the waiter, and then turned back to the table. Greenhorns, maybe. Total newbies, no.
     
    #8 Kalseng, Jul 7, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2013
  9. Not even five minutes after the waiter had brought back his glass of water, a man approached him. He didn't say anything immediately threatening, but Scott still shot a hand toward the case at his feet. Only after realizing that the man taking the seat on the other side of the table was one of his companions did he relax and register what the man had said. "Nah, that's all right," Scott said with a smirk as he picked up his glass of water, it felt real and quenched his thirst as water in the real world would, but he knew that it was only a program. "I'll just stick with water," He took a sip of the liquid, "Though, the concept of food and drink in this game astounds me. The fact that it is so well programmed that my mind believes it to actually be filling and possessing the essential nutrients to sustain a body. But, in actuality, our bodies don't benefit from the food or drink at all, even if our minds think that it does. I find it truly interesting." He smiled when he realized that he was probably getting a bit boring, "Sorry, but I'd love to get my hands on the coding of this game and see how they did it."

    "Scott," He added in quickly, after another sip of water, "Scott Kennedy, nice to meet you." He set the empty glass of water on the table and it was immediately picked up by a waiter.

    "Can I get you anything else, sir?" The waiter asked as polite as ever.

    "Just another water, thanks." Scott smiled disarmingly, "I suppose so, hopefully they get here soon. I'd love to start looking for these guys and test out my freebie item." He said patting the side of his case.

    A girl caught Scott's eye, for the sole purpose that she had been going around to every table and leaving behind nothing but quizzical looks on the faces of the customers. She seemed to be looking for someone, then she spotted their table, and took the third seat at the table. She spoke in quick succession, switching to the waiter who had arrived to take her drink order and then back to them. She seemed a bit nervous, "Hey, Odette, if you're asking whether or not we're the moderators you're supposed to meet, then I suppose the answer is yes. It's nice to meet you, now we've just got to wait for the last of our little group and we'll be ready to go." Then he noticed an interesting display which appeared to be a flying motorcycle hovering over the water next to the cafe, "There's a very good possibility that's him." Scott said with a nod.

    The man came over and took the last seat, confirming that he was the fourth member of their group. Apparently, he knew Odette from some previous incident. He quickly apologized and introduced himself. "Scott Kennedy," Scott replied to both the man and Odette, "And I wouldn't know where to start looking, but Port Haven looks like a big place. There are a lot of player characters walking about as well," He added, glancing up at the massive groups of people moving along the streets, "If they want to hack the servers and have access to everyone's mind, well, they're going to need time. A system this huge is full of fail safes and firewalls, top of the line security would be a necessity since people's lives are on the line. Assuming that the people we're dealing with know what they're doing, they'll try and create as many distractions as possible to keep people away from wherever they're performing the hack."

    Scott spoke quietly, conspiratorially. He didn't intend to take charge of the conversation like this, but given his background, he had a fairly good idea of what was going through the terrorists minds. "In a place this big, there's bound to be some sort of information to be dug up. I'd say we check whatever area in this city is most like a market, since they'd be needing supplies if they're taking on the admins and moderators."

    He downed his water quickly and waited for any other suggestions, "Of course, I'm still getting used to the mechanics of this game, so someone else may have a better idea of where to check." He shrugged, resting one of his feet on the case on the ground.
     
  10. Sem

    Sem The Last of the Snowmen
    Former Administrator

    "Noah Butler," the young man said warmly to Odette and then Arthur shortly thereafter. Mr. Kennedy got right to the point as soon as Arthur arrived. Noah leaned back in his chair and sipped on his cosmopolitan as Scott spoke, listening to his ideas. Going to the market sounded like a good idea, but if these hackers were as good as they sounded then would they even need to use the market? It wouldn't be that hard to hack the NPC shop owners - easier then hacking into the servers. Which means that there wouldn't be anything to go off of even if they went to the market. They might even be able to hack items directly into their inventory without even needing to go to the markets.

    Part of him wasn't going to say anything, but that wasn't good team playing. Despite his confidence he wasn't much of a leader, though he wasn't a better follower either. Still, he repeated his thoughts aloud, explaining his concerns.
     
    #10 Sem, Jul 15, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2013
  11. Odette allowed herself a breath of relief when she heard from one of the other men, who went by Scott, apparently, confirmed that this was the group of people meant to stop the hackers from running rampant across the game. She then graciously received her red drink from the returning waiter and quickly plucked the two cherries out of it just as an earlier acquaintance had came over to the area. He quickly acknowledged her as the same girl who had run him over earlier, and had then taking a seat after apologizing. Odette's face flushed a bright red as she removed her hat from her head and started gnawing at its rim. She felt bad that she had been all aloof and hot-headed earlier, and the guy didn't even call her out for it! How could he be so calm? Regardless of, Odette turned an ear to listen to Scott and the other man voice his thoughts.

    She nodded at both Scott and the other one as one voiced his ideas and the other his concerns about said idea. Personally, Odette thought it would be a much better idea to go to the marketplace, although for different reasons than what Scott voiced. Shifting her balance on her chair, she removed her mouth and articulated what she believed.

    "Personally, I really do think it would be best to go to the marketplace. Not cause of the need for supplies or anything, but because of the people! There's like so many people we can ask about the issue, and I may know a few shadier ones who would know about the subject of the information we may necessarily need," Odette was gushing with happiness inside, for she actually sounded confident, unlike how she was outside of the game. "So I vote marketplace anyway. Even if those mean people decided to hack into items and stuff, I'm sure they would have accidentally told someone else about this kinda stuff!"

    She certainly wouldn't mind doing some shopping, either.
     
  12. "Market this, market that," Arthur said with a huff. He took a long sip of his water, and placed it back down onto the table. "I'm with Noah. The hackers could probably just clack away at their keyboard and get enough Super Elixer what-have-you's to last them a decade. Though Odette does rase a point, one can't always trust such information. But if the market is where we're destined to go, it's where we're destined t go." With another particularly long sip of his water, Arthur gave himself time to collect his thoughts once again. "I suppose we wouldn't even need to capture or detain the hacker, either. By simply attaining a username, we could freeze or delete his account." He drained his glass, for some strange reason, feeling oddly parched. "It all seems rather simple for the powers that be to call in four moderators to do the job of one. Any theories on that one?"
     
    #12 Kalseng, Jul 22, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2013
  13. "Well," Scott started, looking around at the other moderators, "I hadn't considered that they could just hack in their own items," He confessed, "But Odette does raise a point. There's bound to be some sort of information to be found there." Scott finished off his water, setting the empty glass back onto the table for it to be immediately scooped up by the waiter. If he were being completely honest, he was a bit embarrassed about not thinking that the hackers would hack in items instead of buying them, especially since he had been a hacker himself until recently.

    Though, he wouldn't hack in items, he'd hack in the money to buy the items, maybe, but having a bunch of items without ever visiting a shop almost screamed suspicion. It didn't matter though, with a team of hackers as opposed to just one, they were bound to do things differently than he would. '

    He looked up at Arthur's question. Sending four mods to do the job of one? Scott didn't exactly think that it was an easy job that they had been sent to do, but it shouldn't be too difficult. Then again, there were billions of lives at stake, obviously they wanted to cover all of their bases. If anything happened to the players, there would be a massive lawsuit, not to mention the game would be shut down and they'd lose hundreds of millions of dollars. They had been sent to prevent that from happening. One moderator versus an entire group of hackers equally as powerful as a moderator? Scott was surprised they hadn't sent more than four.

    He was so lost in thought he barely noticed what sounded like far off fireworks, he heard them in the back of his mind. He was waiting for the waiter to bring him another water, when he noticed that everything had come to a standstill, even the NPCs at the restaurant. He looked up and noticed a flood of people running from the direction of the town gate, and smoke rising up from the same direction.

    "Or," Scott said eying the chaos unfolding, "We can check out whatever is going on over there. And if it's what I think it is, we can just ask the hackers ourselves."

    OoC: Meh, weak post, sorry guys. I've been busier than I thought I'd be.
     
  14. Sem

    Sem The Last of the Snowmen
    Former Administrator

    OOC: Oh, Chad. You always do an excellent job of forcing people to wing it ;P

    "Well," Noah started as he finished the last of his cosmo, gazing calmly at the mass of people as they ran as fast as their virtual legs would take them. "Let's get going then, shall we?" He set his empty glass down on the table for the NPC's to pick up whenever they were unfrozen. He quickly walked out into the street, smoothing out his clothes before taking off in the direction of the smoke.

    He couldn't help but smile at this new-found speed that the moderator-status offered him. He felt light as a feather and imagined himself looking quite graceful as he ran. He cut very cleanly into the mob of people, running against them. He dodged some and jumped over others. "I think I'll only use my bike for long distance now," he mused, and then realized that if he ever had to fortune of finding a token he would deeply consider further enhancing his speed and agility. As the plume of dark smoke became clearer he focused on being more serious, considering that this was a serious matter in which he was asked to lend a hand in.

    The people had mostly cleared the area by the time the four of them had arrived, which was impressive as they had all been sitting down at the table only a minute or so before. Noah stopped and gazed around, using his enhanced vision to scout out the area. He immediately spotted a few users that seemed to have been injured. These people had to come first, he realized. His powers were perfect for these types of situations.

    He ran over to the closest one, pulling them away from danger with ease. He set the user, a woman, down on the sidewalk and place his hands over the wound on her leg. Even though the blow wasn't lethal, the leg would bother her in the real world upon her disconnection due to how closely linked the human mind was with the game. It also, of course, hindered her ability to stay safe in the virtual world. In a mere few seconds the open wound mended with new flesh growing back quickly. Muscle was repaired and lost blood was restored. What would have taken him fifteen to twenty seconds before only took him less than five seconds now - he couldn't help but marvel at his new efficiency.

    "There, there, dear," he said softly. "You're perfectly fine now. I suggest that you disconnect right now, just in case."

    She stared at him for a moment with fearful wide eyes before nodding quickly. She made a few strange movements with her fingers, which would look awkward in real life, but in game if meant she was accessing her user interface. In a matter of moments her clothes and skin melted away to briefly reveal a blue wire-frame that burst into hundreds of blue pixels that quickly faded like sparks from a fire.

    "One down," he muttered as he quickly went on to the next injured person. Hopefully his supportive skills weren't needed by the others just then.
     
    #14 Sem, Aug 6, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2013
  15. Arthur's eyes rolled over to look at the source of the explosion. Of course, something had to go wrong right then. There was obviously no other option. The man stood and watched one of the new moderators, Noah, run off to the market.

    "I'll follow suit," He muttered, and found himself jogging along at an easy speed. Arthur may not have been the face of the moderators, but he knew his business. Keep the player's safe, keep the game working, make sure people are following the rules. In that order. When he arrived, he found Noah dealing with a hurt woman. Two other users, apparently some kind of escapist couple, were holding each other's hands in fear. Arthur knelt down in front of them, and pulled the top card from his deck. Waving his hands in front of each other, the card turned into two silver chalices full of a dark blue potion, and he handed one to each of the players. They took large gulps from their respective cups, and found their wounds instantly healing. "If your interface appears to have not changed, you are allowed to continue playing. However, we moderators and administrators would highly recommend any players involved in an accident file a report upon logout, to help us continue keeping the game running." Arthur finished reciting the usual garble, and flashed a charming smile. The two of them logged out, the familiar logout explosion happening in front of him. Flipping his watch open, Arthur pointed to the screenshot button, and a small, silver frame popped down in front of him. It was a camera, minus all the fancy camera bits. It copied whatever the frame contained in your sight, and made it a portable picture file. Holding it up, Arthur framed the site of the apparent explosion.

    "Click," He spoke, and the frame produced a digital picture, which hovered above his head. Pointing it at another charred piece of ground, Arthur noticed something. "Click." The frame produced another picture, and Arthur walked over to a dislodged brick. It flew away from the building, yes, but it was very far away from the rest of the building. Slipping his hands around the brick, he felt the digitally charred object break apart. At the back of the brick, a sizable, spherical section had been blown out. Arthur wandered up to the building, and saw a perfect, sphere-shaped area indented in the building.

    "Click," Another picture popped above Arthur's head. "Save in Default Folder." The three pictures collapsed into Arthur's head, and he closed his watch. The silver frame vanished from his fingers.

    "Noah!" Arthur called behind him. "You got any thoughts on this?" He gestured towards the destroyed portion of the building.
     
    #15 Kalseng, Oct 8, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 19, 2013

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