[That was it.... the Lady is gone and Leos no longer has need to fight anymore and he could go back to his treatment. After some deliberation the Filial was to be disassembled and studied in depth in order to gain a better understanding of the Precursor Martian Technology.  But that at the current moment was neither here nor there. With the Raven's Nest collapsing completely, people needed an alternative to the arena battles, a chance to watch pilots give it their all in head to head mechanized chaos...  and PROGTECH - after much redevelopment and reworking of their goals and hierarchy delivered.]


[Cheering loudly from the stadium seat, Leos threw his hands in the air without shame. An advancement in Virtual Technology, miniaturized robotics and a complex particle emission system known simply as HIDEO, Project: Formula Front allowed for people of all ages to purchase and design miniature Armored Cores with ease and pit them against each other in configurable arenas - allowing everything from standard combat in non-standard environments to multi-Core Races through obstacle laden tracks. It was the last lap through a volcanic arena that was under considerable stress, often tearing the track apart - destabilizing footing or making unexpected ramps... and Lana - on the board as Hustler Nine with her AC Cueball just barely managed to cross the finish line, the gundam-colored machine stretching its arm across it as the rival it went head to head with was just mere millimeters behind her. The crowd went absolutely wild as the contestants who didn't have their ACs wrecked all crossed.

Within moments the area reconfigured, a winner's stand with an erupting Volcano as its backdrop and jumping in joy was not just her machine, but also Lana herself.]


[From the looks of it, her competition had no issues with their loss as well, the second and third place contestants having their AC's put the Cueball up on their shoulders. The three beaming brightly as they held their trophies up for a picture.]

Read more... )

Read more... )

[One would expect Leos to be absolutely devastated when you find him after the mission. With who died... who went missing and how badly he fared. The screaming and crying all the way through... that he would be an inconsolable mess. Yet instead when you find him, he's humming cheerfully as her walked through the base with several packs of pudding. A little too cheerfully. Something was worrying about this.]

Oh... hey! One minute...

[He snaps off a pack and places it in your hand, giving you an almost heartrendingly sunny smile.]

Friendship pudding now. Just so I don't forget like I did a lot of times before.

I've got a meeting with Progtech that Lana's taking me to so I won't be back until waaaay later.

[2] [Later that day...]

[It was closing onto midnight and still no Leos. One would almost be worried as to what was happening to him... but he's a grown dude. He can take care of himself right?]

H... elp....h...help...m..me...

[Except that belief would be refuted. Utterly. Walking down an intersecting corridor was a horrifically bloodied Leos with a frighteningly vacant look in his eyes from the absolutely gigantic amount of pain he was feeling before he just collapsed into the ground and bled there.]


[The good news first: Leos isn't in any danger of dying. The bad news: All those wounds and injuries? They weren't random. They were surgical scars. It was less about what could have been removed... but more about what was put in. Specifically it seems that Leos was now the proud owner of a large amount of cybernetics. Ones that in theory could allow him to literally interface with machinery and link his mind to it.]


[The surgery itself was horrifically invasive and traumatic as Leos can attest to. Diagnosis revealed that a minimal amount of anesthetic was used in order to ensure that the cybernetics were properly linked to his body. As he recovers in the infirmary you can see Lana sparing the Raven a glance before walking away.]

[Could she... and by extension PROGTECH be responsible for this...?]

[As Leos is still in no state to be visited... Discuss this matter with others/Confront Lana?]

[The moment Leos was dragged back to base it was clear things were going to be pretty bad. Why? Because his handler was chewing him out royally right there in the hangar.]


Pale Rider is being put into repairs again Leos, and not only that your actions are having PROGTECH question your competence. They are planning to drop your sponsorship altogether because of your childish, undisciplined and impulsive behavior-

He was there Lana! Hustler One... Nineball... He was there! I had to-

[This was punctuated by a tremendously hard slap that sent Leos to the ground with a cry. That definitely left a mark, and that whimper he let out was more along the lines of a kicked puppy than the wild, anger driven animal that had been out in the field. Lana didn't even raise her voice as she proceeded to tear into him like a frigid wind with a side order of ice cold rain.]

Cause irreparable damage to several of Pale Rider's systems for the sake of revenge. Revenge I may add that you aren't even prepared to take because of how under-trained, inexperienced and ill equipped you are. Not to mention your immaturity and utter lack of ability to maintain focus on a designated objective.

You. are. pathetic. I'm locking down the Pale Rider after its repairs are complete and speaking to PROGTECH about suspending your access to the Arena for the time being. Until you can actually learn to grow up as well as use a machine without completely destroying it, don't you dare so much as even get five feet of that Armored Core.

[Lana does a precise turn without even looking back at Leos, who looked up at her with a piteous expression on his face.]

Lana... Lana wait...'m sorry... please don't go... don't be mad... please..?

[No dice, she just walks out the closest exit, leaving Leos to slump to the ground.]

[Do you go after Lana? Or Stick with Leos?]