2010-08-10 - Swords! Arrows! Ice...?

Log Info

Title: Swords! Arrows! Ice…?
Emitter: —
Characters: Jonathan Stevens, Winter Storm, Rioghan Mac Cionaoith, Antigone
NPCs: —
Place: Thunderdome
Time: August 10, 2010
Summary: Thunderdome brawly things: Jonathan finished up an agility-testing program, Rioghan starts another. Winter attempts to observe and gets caught in the battle. Holograms are shot, stabbed, and…tripped. Antigone is called "m'lady."

Log text goes here. Don't forget to change the title!

It took a little while before Jon was comfortable with it, but she's finally reached a point where she's more or less comfortable in the Thunderdome, to the point where she customizes it somewhat for simple workouts. Advanced scenarios? No. But this, yes. And what is this? Right now the 'dome features an assortment of pipes, poles, platforms and planks, from floor to ceiling. Jon's currently walking along a pole, arms held out to help her balance, though she doesn't seem to need to help. She's got a version of the Thundercome uniform on, modified for her tail, a smidge looser fitting than normal people wear it, since normal people don't have fur. She stands on the pole for a moment and then closes her eyes. She turns in place, and then takes one small step backwards, dropping down! She reaches out, eyes still closed, catching the pole and stopping her fall with a jounce. A brief grin, eyes open, and she starts to work back and forth, building up her momentum, moving faster, looping up around the pole once, twice, then launching herself across the room towards another one.

Antigone moves quietly as she enters the Thudnerdome. She has her sword strapped to her belt, a black blouse and blue jeans making an appropriately dark-modern look. Antigone waits for Jon to land, then applauds lightly. "Most impressive, Jonathan. I hope I am not interrupting?" the Englishwoman asks in a clipped, propper accent as she walks to Jon's landing spot, stopping an appropriately respectful distance away.

Uniform for Thunderdome? What? Winter may have skipped over that little blurb of info in the packet he received. Reading: not really his thing. But his legs work just fine; he can walk over and take a look-see. So he looks. See? Here he is. Frowning. He does that a lot. For the moment he stands in whatever protective little corridor there is before the floor proper.

Rioghan has been up since dawn, training, studying… it's what he does. Anyone who's been at the Steranko Institute for the last three years would say that the young man does little else. Kept to himself. Didn't cause trouble. Rarely spoke up in classes. He's been away on 'holiday' since the last semester ended, having only just returned to campus this week. So any new faces that have arrived since Summer School began, he doesn't know them yet. He does, however, have a session reserved within the Thunderdome that Coach Mason and Mr. Murphey confirmed with him earlier.

Which explains why he arrives in the Thunderdome shortly after Antigone and Winter's own entrances. Rioghan? Well, he's not wearing the standard uniform for the Thunderdome. No. He's wearing armor. Yes. Real armor. The lighter kind, designed for archers to wear in battle. A sword belted around his waist, a quiver full of arrows on his back, and an intricately carved longbow in hand. Upon seeing the group gathered in the Thunderdome, he clears his throat, and speaks. The accent is unmistakably of Ireland, "I didn't realize that it was t'be a group session…"

Jonathan is some ways up in the air, sitting on the pole that she launched herself at. She's got one hand holding onto it to steady herself, but seems fairly comfortable, all told. She offers Antigone a wave. "Nope. Just getting a little workout in, stretching out, so to speak. Trying to get used to doing, well, what I'm able to do now." On hearing Rioghan's voice, she looks over his way, nodding to him and Winter on noticing the later. "Did you have it reserved?" she asks, her own accent a bit softer, a drawl instead of a lilt. A bit south of Maryland, rather than way easterly of it. She lets go and casually drops the fifteen feet to the floor, landing lightly on bare feet, knees flexing to effortlessly absorb the landing. "Damn but this is still so neat," she says brightly.

"I do not believe it was intended to be," Antigone says to the new arrival. In armor. With an Irish accent. Antigone's eyes narrow distinctly, as if she could see through to his mind. Which maybe she can. Antigone's always been cagey about that. "Always a more difficult proposition than it appears," Antigone tells Jonathan.

Winter's from the northeast originally: New York. Wait long enough and you'll hear it. However, right now he's just not talking that much. "I'm not part of any group" is all he says, folding his arms and leaning someplace 'out of the way.' Belatedly, Jonathan gets a brief nod.

"Aye, Mr. Murphey and Coach Mason wanted me to run a program they said they set up for me," Rioghan says. He shifts the bow to rest the weapon lightly on his shoulder, lifting an eyebrow as Jonathan lands lightly. "But I don't mind if you'd like ta participate in whatever they've set up. I saw you 'round campus before I left for the Summer break, didn't get your name." The young man's impossibly blue eyes look first at Winter, sizing him up, and then Antigone. The woman's sword is noted as are her narrowed eyes, but Rioghan simply offers an easy smile in return. "Nor either of yours. Quite a few new faces around campus than there were before I left."

Jonathan looks at Antigone questioningly. "What is?" she asks the other girl, not following her. Her tail gives a lazy twitch as she shifts attention back to the armored boy, nodding to him. "Dunno if I saw you around or not, myself. Probably did, if you saw me, but I was still just getting used to all this place." She steps over, holding out a hand. "Jonathan. Jon if you like." She shifts attention to Winter. "Didn't get your name at the museum. Good work there. Wish I could've kept hold on my fish."

"Getting used to a new situation," Antigone elaborates for Jon. She looks at Winter and Rioghan, a polite nod for the first and a lingerling look for the second. As he looks at her, she shifts her weight, her hand resting idly on her sword. "There seem to be new students every week," she observes. "Perhaps there is a deeper meaning to that fact. I would be curious to join you in this 'program' of yours," she says to Rioghan. "Perhaps it can be educational."

Winter certainly does not register any recognition for the pair that arrived around the same time he did. Then again, nobody recognizes him, either. He hasn't been some wallflower; he's brand spanking new. It's pure coincidence he ran into Jonathan at all, and even then, not much interaction. So the new guy gives the… cat-person a visual once-over, briefly, before offering a very simple introduction. "Winter."

"Rioghan Mac Cianoaith," the armored young man introduces himself, the name sounding like 'Ryan McKenny' spoken with an Irish accent. "If you ever saw anyone practicing archer out in the field in the middle o' the track, you saw me around." As Antigone's hand rests upon her sword, Rioghan's hand drops to the hilt of his unconciously. The other hand retains its grasp on the bow easily enough. "I've been here for three years now, an' there's always new faces ta add to the campus. Nice to make your aquaintances," he says. Inclining his head, he moves towards the control box, looking towards the felinoid student, "If'n you're done with your workout, Jonathan?" He gently sets his bow down next to the control panel so that he can queue up whatever sequence the teachers pre-programmed for him tonight.

"Mmf, yeah, definitely," Jon says to Antigone. In more ways than one for some people. "Don't think there's any deeper meaning other'n folks having kids and some kids have powers and stuff. I mean it's not probably not like there's beings out their shuffling kids together here." She nods briefly to Winter as she gets his name, leaving it at that. "Sure, help yourself," she says to Rioghan, stepping out of the way. "Didn't realize anyone else had something scheduled or I would've done this another time."

Difficult for Antigone to recognize Winter when she hasn't met him before. "Antigone," she says to Winter and Rioghan. "I would have remembered such a sight," she says to him. "Perhaps I should come and observe." Archery was never her thing, as she took more quickly to the sword than the bow. "Perhaps not," she says to Jon, "although perhaps I should investigate the matter." She makes a mental note.

Winter shifts over, presumably so he's not in anyone's way; he eyes Antigone sidelong. Or maybe her sword. He gives her a nod for the intro, unsmiling. Then he asides to the cat-person, "Jonathan's an odd name for a girl."

Rioghan frowns at the controls for a moment, trying to remember just how to work the blasted thing and then, thinking he's got the right of it, presses the buttons. The field of pipes and platforms that Jonathan had been using for her workout fade into outlines and then dissipate as the holographic projector that is the Thunderdome pulls up a new scenario.

The lights within the dome darken, filling the space with what appears to be a night sky riddled with stars and a full moon shining down. Around the perimeter of the space outlines of trees rise up and then fill in. Grass seems to ripple outward in an expanding circle from the center of the room. And tall stones carved with ancient runes first form as laser outlines and then solidify into a circular monument. Rioghan stays where he's at by the console for a long moment, just staring at the construct, then looks at his peers. "If you're certain, you want to join… I imagine it will start the moment we step up to the stones," the boy tells them. He picks up his bow, reaching over his shoulder to draw one of his arrows. The easy smile is gone, replaced with a far more serious expression as he starts to step onto what was and will be a battlefield.

Jon gives Antigone a shrug and a bit of a grin that is more of a smirk in a nice coat. "If you like. Probably a waste of time, but hey, won't know until you look." The not quite a smirk turns wry and more crooked as she looks to Winter. "'scause I didn't used to be a girl. Supposed to be a guy. Short form is I'm cursed with fur and boobs. I can give you the full version later, if you like." She grows quiet as Rioghan messes with the controls, watching the simple feline playground turn into a forest. "I should bow out, I think. Gotta couple things to finish up before class tomorrow. Thanks for the offer, though. Nice meeting you." She gives everyone a friendly nod and wave, and then turns to depart.

"That seems overly dramatic," Antigone mutters as the stones rise up in the middle of the simulation. Antigone steps up to the stone, studying the runes carefully. She says, not looking away, "Be well, Jonathan." Antigone runs her fingers along the runes. "This is from Aran," Antigone finally pronounces as she turns about to face the others.

Winter squints a little as 'moonlight' floods the area. Then he's left blinking at Jonathan's explanation. "Uh," he says, eloquently. To judge by the hesitation, and the expression as he twists a little to look after Jonathan, he might not need that full explanation. His shoulders give a little twitch, and then he looks back to the new setting. "Huzzah, fieldtrip to Stonehenge," he mutters. Mystical runes, apparently not his forte.

As Antigone lays a finger upon the stone there's an ominous crackle of sound and a spark of pale silvery light begins spreading from one stone to the other in an intricate web-like pattern, coalescing into the center of the stone circle. Rioghan plants his feet and knocks an arrow. "People called it the Dance of the Gods," the young man explains. Not Stonehenge, though the mistake is easy enough to make for the uninformed. Then the runes light up and the virtual appearance of magic spreads as if opening a portal. "m'Lady Antigone, you may want to arm yourself," he says, tone low. A look is given towards Winter, who is safely on the perimeter for now.

There's one last flash and without warning several large, dark, twisted-looking demonic creatures of shadow start coming out of the circle. One lunges towards Antigone almost straight away and receives an arrow between its eyes for its efforts. The holographic beast drops, the arrow still appearing to stick in it's face. Overly dramatic or demonic apocalypse in the making, you decide.

There's a *shhhhhhlink* and Antigone draws her sword as the demons appear. The first one gets shot down by Rioghan's arrow, falling to her feet before she even gets a chance to strike. A nasty glare towards him, as Antigone bristles. She takes a few steps away from the pillar, rotating in the process to check her range of vision. She can tell there's more….

'M'lady,' Winter mouths, no sound audible. He smirks a bit. Then, stepping forward, he finds a tree — a fake tree, he can't help but think — to examine. He rests a hand upon it, then leans against it. Once again he folds his arms, a spectator watching some kind of 3-D video game. He can't quite wrap his mind around the tech, perhaps. He fully understands Antigone's black look, however, and he can't help but snicker.

Rioghan moves quickly, as shadowy targets come pouring out through the gateway. Many of them rush away, consequently towards the 'fake tress' that Winter has decided to rest against. Three snarling beasts begin to circle Antigone like she might be a choice morsel. It really is like a giant video game for those of the modern mindset. Rioghan is from a world of magic rather than technology, though, and that the Thunderdome is capable of producing something so real — largely in part to Mr. Murphey's contributions no doubt — is unsettling.

That same adrenaline pumping, heart racing feeling that he had earlier today when Maggie's demonic-side cornered him in his room is back. But these monsters he knows aren't real, no matter how real they seem to be. The look from Antigone is met with only the briefest of nods. She can handle herself? Noted. The boy has his own quarry to worry about now anyway as two of the shadowy beasts and a more humanoid figure in a dark robe approach him. Two arrows are knocked simultaneously to be shot at the beasts flanking the humanoid figure.

One of the monster shudders and lifts off the ground, getting thrown back a good distance. Given the look of concentration on her face, it seems Antigone could be the source. The second of the beasts lunges for Antigone, who ducks underneath his arm by a hair's breadth. The blade slices through its stomach, getting a roar from the beats. Not deep enough, unfortunately, and it's just made the creature mad. And that leaves her with the third monster. Antigone rolls from under her target and gets back to her feet.

"What the fuck, man," Winter grumbles. "I didn't join the game." He still does evidently consider himself an observer: he climbs the tree. The highly observant will notice that he palms climbing spikes 'out of nowhere,' apparently conjuring them — but without the benefit of magic. Icy hand and footholds are jabbed into the tree, and he hauls himself up with their aid. They fade behind him, and he draws his legs up to crouch on a thick branch.

Granted, the 'demons' just might think of climbing, too.

The demons don't climb after Winter, but they do start massing beneath the tree. Snarling, snapping, waiting.

"You're on the battlefield, you're part o' the battle," Rioghan says without looking away from his own battle. The two arrows both meet their targets. One falling like the first he hit, the second is struck but only made angry by the arrow fired by the archer. It's the cloaked figure that worries him though, the cloak is tossed back and a man with dark hair and eyes as black as pitch is revealed. The man draws a sword and surges forward with it. The bow is brought up in time to block the sword that swings at Rioghan's neck. The wooden weapon catches the holographic blade with a 'ching!' that sounds more like metal upon metal than metal upon wood. With his other hand, Rioghan reaches across his body and draws his own sword. The bow being used to parry and the sword being used in an attempt to strike the armored young man is ambidextrous. But his opponent has been programmed to have more skill than he does with the blade. It's meant to be a challenge and he's engaged now in a sword fight, unable to pick off multiple targets with his bow.

Antigone takes quick steps back, inching towards the tree as she assesses monsters. She waits for them to get close enough as they come towards her. There's a big *fwoooosh* and the ground beneath them lights on fire. The flame spread to their feet, distracting them severely. Antigone dances with the flame, coming closer and then letting her sword slices into it, connecting with one of the demon's necks and decapitates it, sending a smouldering head rolling along the ground.

Winter heaves a huge sigh of long suffering, like he's too good for this or something. With a muttered curse he simply jumps down from his tree limb, and upon hitting the ground in a crouch to absorb the shock, he frowns and assesses the best spot. Which is right by Antigone. This has less to do with what one might expect of a teenage boy and more to do with avoiding friendly fire: he slams a hand down on the ground, courting a few burns, but accepting it as a reasonable price. Radiating outward, frost crackles and quickly thickens, forming a glassy, slick surface beneath the demons' feet or cloven hooves or whatever the hell (get it, hell) they have, sending the majority flat on their backs or otherwise sprawled. You know. Easy targets.

Antigone takes advantage of Winter's ice-slick, giving the demons another telepathic shove. One of them stumbles and topples, while the other lets out an angry roar. Antigone's left hand lances out, emitting a bright burst of light which shoots to the demon. The bolt goes through its mouth and bursts out the back of its head in spectacularly gory fashion.

Winter keeps himself near Antigone's back to avoid catching her in the next ice slick, should he choose to use it again. For the moment, it appears he won't have to: instead, he steps forward and pantomimes launching something — a baseball, a spear, something — only in actuality it's a jagged javelin formed of ice, which strikes true through the meaty part of a demon's arm, eliciting a roar and a gush of whatever fluid holographic demons might possess as 'blood.'

"Great graphics," he mutters.

"The school spared no expense here," Antigone says. "You have a very useful set of powers, Winter, if somewhat on the nose." With the demons apparently defeated for the moment, Antigone lowers her sword and turns to face her fellow student.

"Whaddya mean?" Winter asks, a little guardedly. He still hasn't taken his eyes off of his surroundings, expecting another ambush, but it seems there's just Ryan and his nemesis over there, trading swordblows and stuff. Winter grimaces a little at the bow-as-shield.

"Your name is Winter and you have ice powers. It is as if my name had been 'Sorceress'," Antigone explains. She takes a look over her shoulder towards Ryan. "He seems very involved," Antigone observes.

"Oh." Winter swipes a hand over his face, and flicks a stray strand or three of hair back. Good thing the school doesn't have draconian dress code regarding hair length. "That. Yeah. Who knows. Maybe my parents were precogs. I think they were just stoned. Whatever."

He finally turns, and eyes Antigone. "I'll probably just think of you as… 'm'lady,'" he drawls. Since 'Ryan' came up with the title, Winter looks his way as well. "Involved, yeah."

"Both seem possible," Antigone says. She actually groans outright, her head dropping. "I beg you not to," she says. Antigone's lips press together as she watches Ryan. "He is a spirited fighter," she notes. "I wonder why he allows the conflict to drag on."

A smirk slips into place at that groan, but at least — at least? — Winter doesn't laugh outright. And he doesn't call Antigone 'm'lady,' either. Not now, at any rate. Finding that selfsame tree, he leans against it again, arms folded 'casually.' "Maybe 'cause a girl's watching, hell if I know."

Antigone steps back, resting against the tree as well. "Quite presumptive of you. It could be because a boy is watching."

Winter's shoulders stiffen at the suggestion: that he's one of 'those.' "Yeah, well," he says 'lightly,' or aiming for that (poorly). "He can polish his own sword. I ain't no buttfucker."

"I do not see how your status would have any bearing on his," Antigone says, her tone going frosty - frostier, which is a trick for her. "Unless you have already had a conversation with him on the topic."

The 'icy' one grunts. "No. First time I've met M'lord Lucky Charms, there. I guess he's a regular." Winter, decidedly not. A glance goes to the very close-by Antigone to ask the question tacitly.

"It is my first time meeting him as well," Antigone says. "It would appear," she says, watching him continue the fight, "he has the innate Irish desire to show off."

A hand comes up as Winter rubs at his jaw. "Wonder if he's got some booze in his dorm, too," he murmurs.

Not so much showing off as simply struggling with the hologram. He's taken a few good zings with the holographic blade, which with the way the program is set up only delivers some nice little shocks rather than real injury. And then add the fact that while the teens were engaged a tall man in a three piece suit has come in and is presently at the controls. He's not really meddling with them, just observing. Meanwhile, shadowed beasts continue to pour out and spread away into the darkness of the 'setting', leaving Winter and Antigone alone for better quarry. A few linger around the armored young man and his 'nemesis', though, watching. And waiting for a mistake or a mis-step, which they get when Rioghan is knocked backwards, disarmed and "stabbed" with the holographic blade by his opponent.

Just before the waiting demons can pounce, however, the entire scenario flickers. The solid objects and 'dead demons' turn into outlines and then fade away altogether. Arrows that were stuck in the forms drop and rattle against the Thunderdome's floor. Rioghan pushes up onto an elbow with annoyance, rubbing at a spot on his chest.

"Sloppy. The new students did better than you, lad," the man at the controls says. That would be Mr. Murphey. One of the history teachers, who doubles as a weaponry coach. Coincidentally (right, because so many things around campus are coincidence) he has the same accent as the young archer… and arrived on campus at the same time he did three years ago.

"I may be new at this institution," Antigone says, in partial defense of Rioghan, "but I have been trained in the mystical and martial arts for nearly my whole life."

Winter stoops to pick up a nearby arrow. He examines it curiously rather than with any actual eye for craftsmanship or practicality. He has no comment on training or the lack thereof.

"Aye, an' so you have Miss Elric," the teacher says, resting his arms on the console while looking at the trio. Mr. Murphey's smile for her is genuine, but fleeting when replaced with the frown for Rioghan. "But so has young Rioghan, here. And I dare to ask just how much slacking off your Uncle let you do back on that farm these past two months?"

There's really no good answer for his tutor. Rioghan just pushes up to his feet and sheathes his sword. The bow is completely unharmed from being used as an aid in his fighting, but he checks it over anyway. He doesn't voice complaints about the scenario that was chosen. About the figure he was fighting against. All of that is distinctly kept to himself as he moves to gather up arrows around the emptied course. Those are things for private conversations. "I'll do better next time," he says, moving towards Winter to extend a hand for the arrow.

"Aye, you'll do better next time. Always next time. An if next time is the real thing, you might be dead," the teacher says bluntlty.

"Has he?" Antigone asks, more rehtorically than anything else. She focuses on Rioghan. That comment romthe reacher has just underscored to her that this is somebody she *should* know. That she doesn't proves either something is afoot or a distinct blind spot in her knowledge. She'll have to do some research into him.

Winter hands off the arrow without complaint. He might have used it as a letter opener or something, otherwise. "Maybe there's a distinct advantage to being dead," he muses, glancing toward Mr. Lucky Charms, Sr.

Rioghan just nods a thanks to Winter and drops the arrow over his shoulder back into the quiver. It's still good. The hologram program didn't damage it, afterall. With Antigone's eyes on him, he just looks back at her and raises an eyebrow. The downside of finally starting to interact with others on campus are the number of looks like that he's received since he got back. All of his arrows collected he looks at Mr. Murphey and asks with a little resignation in his native dialect, "Ba choir dom a laps siul anois no ar maidin?"

[OOC] Rioghan says, "Translates for the readers (ZOMG Subtitles!), whether the characters speak Gaelic or not: Should I run laps now, or in the morning?"

"Now," Mr. Murphey says, nodding towards the exit. The teacher stays put though, even as the armored student heads towards the door, beginning to pull said armor off over his head. "Leave it on." Addressing the newer students, now, he says, "Advantages in death, surely, but what of fates worse than death, lad?"

"Lectures?" Winter hazards. He gives a wolfish kind of grin.

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