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Author Topic: Ace of The Duck Pond Thunder of the Ghost Ships.  (Read 5982 times)
Stella Gaslight
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« Reply #100 on: December 10, 2015, 03:56:41 am »

There was a song here wordless and sung by two voices.  She knew how it went deep in her heart and longed to sing it but first worldly things had to be banished staring with her heavy overalls.  Pure she returned his embrace and they were whole until both of them fell fast asleep under the palm in the warm green light.
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MWBailey
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"This is the sort of thing no-one ever believes"

rtafStElmo
« Reply #101 on: December 10, 2015, 06:29:25 am »

"Patron"

A whirl of memories, ideals and ideas stormed through Meri's mind.
Patron; Father; Guardian; Master.Mistress. Sire.

Bargain; Pact; Debt; Contract; Repercussions.
Decisons. Destiny. Fate. Happenstance. Probability. Permutation. Outcome.

Different meanings, different levels of meaning within those meanings.

Soul; Spirit ; Sword; Honor.

And one word before, behind, in front of, above and below it all:

Blood.

Not just the liquid of life, but the blood that must be spilled to maintain both life and unlife, make pacts and contracts, break them - and to bind the immortal to eternity, be they alive or unalive.

A distant light on teh horizon of her awareness gave Merovingia pause; it was bright grreen and blinding, yet also red-pink and soft. A bonding, of magic, spirit, and soul.

As above, so below.

Literally.
-----------
Meri broke out of her reverie and found herself looking into the eyes of the young foxwoman, whose gold-red tail had slipped free and now swished full and lovely behind her, and her ears stood erect atop her head, as she gazed into Meri's eyes. There was a feeling that surrounded the group and their immediate vicinity that gave the impression that although the bar was as loud as it had been all along, they themselves resided within a cocoon of privacy; the sweat on the bartender's forehead explained why.

"My veins?" The young woman asked, pulling aside her hair and showing her neck.

A brief urge to lunge forward - and then control asserted itself; The vampiress checked herself before her muscles could even twitch to betray her bloodlust. Instead of pouncing to feed, as her mind and the beast within whined and raged for her so to do, Meri smiled both lovingly and sadly. "No, young one, that is for your proposed patron. I am not the demon you should contract with."

"I will accept your offer to regain my Foster-Father's sword, weighty though the responsibility may be for both of us. But tell me, what shall be the price of this boon?"

"That you will protect this station and both human and supernatural for a decade."

"Only a decade?" Meri was surprised.

"bargains must have limits, else they are nothing but endentures." The young woman responded practically.

Wisdom from one so young,
Meri mused. Out loud, she said, "I accept your offer, and your price. I do not accept lightly, however; if you will reconsider, I shall be happier. Though I am happy as I am, I can tell you from the tale of my own life that it is a long and hard road to become either a servant or an ally of the left hand. Do what you will, but consider the consequences first.

"I will, and have."

"Then, go."

Suddenly, the noise around them surged, and the coccoon of privacy melted away as the fox twins seemed suddenly to melt into the throng and disappear. After a moment, Madame Lee spoke.

"Friends of Merovingia," the Proprietress said, although she was somewhat nonplussed by the exchange between Meri and the aspiring smith (though she'd be damned herself before she'd willingly show it) "If you you will follow me, I will show you to our new 'storage facilities.' "

She means the Gate," Al whispered in Jaces ear, as he slipped an arm arond her.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2015, 06:37:38 am by MWBailey » Logged

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CPT_J_Percell
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« Reply #102 on: December 10, 2015, 07:35:08 am »

Wilfred finished his glass of blue, picked up his weapon and followed after Jace, Al and meri, "Somebody need to make sure you don't cause a mischief"
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Stella Gaslight
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Looking for a few good lobsters.


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« Reply #103 on: December 10, 2015, 10:02:19 am »

The gate was built in what Jace guessed was maybe a vault door.  It was thick but it didn't look it closed.  Jace wondered if that was to.keep things out or in.  As soon as she stepped over the threshold Jace sneezed.  "It's all fizzy sort of."  She said blinking.
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Ranger Reid
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« Reply #104 on: December 10, 2015, 12:54:01 pm »

Liam woke.  It could have been minutes or hours.   Donna lay beside him and was glorious in her bare state.   He sat basking in the feeling of complete satisfaction.   No way he was going to remove the skull/ coconut.

He sat and considered the alcove.   Pulling on his clothing, he began to look around.  At the base of the tree was a pile of husks from discarded coconuts.    These would do just fine, he thought.
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Stella Gaslight
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Looking for a few good lobsters.


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« Reply #105 on: December 10, 2015, 07:09:56 pm »

Donna was warm and feeling deeply comfortable.  The air smelled fresh and clean.  She wanted to linger in sleep and not brake this perfect moment but the heartbeat that felt like the other half of hers was gone.  There was no fear he was close somehow Donna could feel him.  Savoring every moment she woke slowly and much to her own surprise felt no need to dress hurriedly.  Normally being caught without a stitch of clothes on would make her stammer and hide but now that seemed rather childish.  "Did you find what you needed?" There was a purr in her voice that added an extra edge to the question.
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MWBailey
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"This is the sort of thing no-one ever believes"

rtafStElmo
« Reply #106 on: December 10, 2015, 09:07:47 pm »

Eyes other than Donna and Liam's watched from the cover of a stand of breadfruit trees, the rank undergrowth beneath them providing ample hiding places for curious people to see who visited teh lighthouse.

"Wots that, they're more naked than we are!" a harshly-whispering voice of a male child said.

"Hush yer yap, Milo," a little-girl voice snapped in an equally harsh whisper. "they'll ear us, and we'll be cauhght! Mum an' Dad'll ground us in the bait tank again!" A child's mer-tail slapped wetly on the sandy soil in indignation. "Don't ell me ter shut--Mmpphmmfyfrmf..." the girl's hand covered the merboy's mouth as two pairs of human eyes sudden;ly scanned their far- off stand of trees. Teh mergirl pointed back to teh water not five feet away andmade a down motion, as if to suggest a dive. A quick and noisy crawl, two loud splashes and the slap of tails against the water's surface later, the pair disappeared beneath the waves of Coconut Lagoon, as it had come to be called.

-------
"Old Rory said once that teh tingles ya get from walking through one of teh gates is 'cause there's somethin' he called a 'forbidding' across them. I think hge meant a spell kept ion place to warn of people comin' through, and to keep certain types out- and certain other types in, if you hget my drift. Plus, there's that what we jus twalked through is one of teh old pressure hatches from before the airlocks were intalled for the float-keel diving wells; that's how they sent the divers out underneath to weld the underside interfloat joints on, so I hear. Those kida doors are all ove rthe place dowm here; it's all fulla giant rooms, like the holds in a cargo ship."

Al is right, it is a forbidding, and for good reason," Meri said. "There are beings here who would do great mischief topside - but then again, many undertowners fear teh mischief of topsiders." She drew aside a sliding pamel door that was about ten feet high adn about half that wide. "Behold, Undertown!"

before, below, and above them spread out, not an empty, cavernous cargo-hold, but a giant, cavernous cargo-hold-like gulf that teemed on every level (some built in and some Jerry built in odd locations) with a population that rivalled, and perhaps even outstripped, that of teh Station above  Teh population donw here was much teh same as that abovem save for a few rathe rtelling differences. Here, every other deniozen sported some kind of animistioc or supernatural feature, some obvious, some not so  much so, and some not at all - but the sense was that something extra was there, nonetheless. In betweenn, beside, cheel-to-jowls, but alsio in some cases isolate, stood, walked , sat, drove, etc., humans of every description as well...
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CPT_J_Percell
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« Reply #107 on: December 10, 2015, 10:39:54 pm »

"Well now, we are here, What are you looking for?" Wilfred asked.
Wilfred pulled something out from his jacket and handed it to a person in a robe who walked passed. There was no exchange of words on movements beyond the hand over and Wilfred didn't even look.
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Ranger Reid
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« Reply #108 on: December 11, 2015, 01:21:55 am »

"Yes, but the cave appears to continue.  I wonder if we should explore further?"  Liam said.   In the dim light he could see that a few feint threads of power seemed to be tethered down the hallway leading away from the entrance to the cave.   

"Might find something we can use?"
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Stella Gaslight
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Looking for a few good lobsters.


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« Reply #109 on: December 11, 2015, 02:07:30 am »

Jace closed her eyes and she could almost feel currents in the air.  It was like a vast pool. she could feel herself bobbing along tugged by invisible currents.  "What we need is a contraption that will detect the grennies as soon as they show up or a little before.  Then we can hit them before they can strike here."  Jace could not help but look around everywhere, she had been a lot of places but none like this.

Donna stretched languidly and smiled.  "Guess I better get my kit on."  She dressed with a sigh and looked out at the cave. "So should we go down that over grown hall?  I can cut back the vines if they get persistent."

Going in the tunnel was like entering a strange secret garden the walls glowed in the darkness with tiny luminescent mushrooms. Donna could not help but gasp in delight at what she saw next,  A tiny human with wings flitted about collecting mushrooms and seemingly not noting the giants standing down the hall from them.  "It is like every fairly tail I ever heard as a child."  she murmured and stepped through the vine covered opening at the end of the hall.  It was like every deep dark forest she had been warned about as a child.  There was the smell of deep rich earth and night blooming flowers almost intoxicating welcoming them deeper in to the wood were shadows flickered like fire light among the trunks and branches.  Donna took Liam's hand both enraptured and afraid of this place.  A shadow moved in front of them gnarled as the trees.  "It has been some time since the people of the tree have sent an envoy. We thought you were gone to time." He looked exactly like the images of Fenoderee in the storybook that had been her grandfathers.  "Hello."  She said with as much grace as she could muster.  Donna looked back at Liam worried to make a misstep.  After all the fairies in her story book could be cruel as much as they were helpfull,
« Last Edit: December 11, 2015, 03:09:38 am by Stella Gaslight » Logged
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« Reply #110 on: December 11, 2015, 08:49:23 pm »

Wilfred looked around the cavern from the balcony just inside the door, the place was as crowded as normal, but he was able to see what he was looking for. "This way" he said as he led them down the ramp the lead into the middle of the hustle and bustle.
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MWBailey
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"This is the sort of thing no-one ever believes"

rtafStElmo
« Reply #111 on: December 11, 2015, 09:26:29 pm »

"Try not to stare, Hon,"  Al Reminded Jace. They're just people, same as us. he nodded to a cat-eared girl at a stall selling what looked and smellwed like ckam chowder. he knew it coudl jkust as easily be barnacle chowder; soe of teh aquatic types dove and harvestred teh colonial crustaceans fom teh bottoms and sides of teh floas and teh ships that came to call at teh Station's harbors. Sme evenb cleaned teh barnacles off ofd shipe =s for a fee and then turned around and sold them in chowder down here. He'd tried teh stuff; it wasn't bad, but was a bitg of a shock when one expected clam chowder from the aroma.

The girl smiled back and waved. A ripple ran through the crowd as they recognized Al, Wilfred and Meri, and realized who Jace was. Al took kis -peaked cap off, dusted iit off, and put it back on. "brace yerself, we're suddenly famous." he noticed Jace eyeing teh chowder girl. "Just an acquaintance. She makes good barnacle chowder."

Meri rolled her eyes at Wilfred's attitude. "Be careful," she said to Al and Jace.  "They all look up to you, for the most part, as protectors of the station, but some are not quite so benevolent. I've already glimpsed one of the escapees from our last creche-purge. Be wary, and guard your weapons. The pickpockets can be quite stealthy, and bold."
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CPT_J_Percell
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« Reply #112 on: December 11, 2015, 10:09:12 pm »

Wilfred stopped and turned to meri, " No one has started shooting yet so they are being very friendly!"
Wilfred caught movement out of the corner of his eye, a flutter of robes and adjusted his path to head in the direction.
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Ranger Reid
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« Reply #113 on: December 11, 2015, 11:56:48 pm »

Liam bowed at the waist.   "Greetings father.   We are not "of the tree", sadly they have faded, but my love and I are travellers, and are cousins to the coconut people.

(Drawing on his training), he added "We greet thee new friend with a gift and warm wishes"

Liam reached in to his pouch and pulled out a perfectly off shaped bonsai tree.   It seemed to large to have come from bis pouch, but it was undamaged and flawless.


As Liam said "my love" red sparkles of energy arced between him and Donna.   He was unsure if she could see it.  She did flush, but it might have been at the name.
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Stella Gaslight
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« Reply #114 on: December 12, 2015, 01:21:22 am »

Ok Jace thought it was time to test if Liam was right about how her powers worked.  He had taught her quite a few ways to hold an image in her mind so she focused on something like a sticky film that she would be sure to notice if anyone tried to take her things.  Much to Jace's surprise she could feel it working.  She took Al's hand and strutted like the cat that got the cream.  Happily they strolled along until several figures in black appeared at the shadowy edges.  All of the sudden Jace felt like she was getting bombarded with flash pictures inside her head.  Being careful not to let it show much this disoriented her she whispered in to what she hopped was Al's ear.  "I can't see the light inside my head it too bright."


As soon as he said my love she felt fizzy like champagne. It was pleasant and full of warmth.  Donna was unsure if that was because of the faint sparkles she could see at the edges of her vision or because her heart was in his hands.  "Come children made introductions with the king under tree.  It has been long since one from above has greeted us."

Donna looked down at herself expecting to see dirty overalls but the shadows stuck to her like a gown full of dark twinkles.  Liam seamed to be covered by armor black as a beetle's shell.  She was both happily surprised by this and a little nervous,  Were her best manners good enough for royalty?
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Ranger Reid
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« Reply #115 on: December 12, 2015, 04:38:22 am »

Like a slow somber parade, Liam and Donna followed the old sprite and all manner of creatures followed along.

They eventually found themselves under a gigantic oak tree.   The roots draped over their heads like branches.   A very old and wrinkled gnome-like creature sat on a rock studying them as they approached.   

Just as they arrived, the king shouted    "Seize them!"  Before Liam or Donna could move, they were entangled in tree roots and ropes.

As they struggled helplessly, the old brownie cackled and laughed.   "Be still so we may decide your fate human."

Liam forced himself to calm.   He looked the little man over and asked "Why have you attacked us?"

The short monarch answered  "I could ask you the same, hunter.   Or will you deny that you came here to destroy our own cousins."

Liam answered  "By calling the foul creations of the Germans cousin, you insult yourself and demean your people.   I do not deny I came for them.  But that was my only mission.   You know as well as I that the beasts I hunted were perverted and ruined.   I did them a favor.   I released them to the White Court so that they might be reborn.   Now I ask you king under the tree, why have you violated the rule of the host?   I came with a gift, and was invited to your presence.   You ARE still a child of Danu are you not?"

Immediately the entanglements released both Liam and Donna.   Donna reacted by snatching a knife from her belt and turning towards the little king with death in her eye.   Liam held his hand out and hoped she would calm. 

The king sat in silence for a moment ignoring Donna.  Then he looked at Liam and said "You know the old customs.  Very well you may leave in peace."

Instead of leaving though, Liam, inspired by his memory of the old ways,  decided to try to help his friends: "But sire, we were invited.  We are allowed to ask a boon."

The little brown man's eyes grew wide and for just a moment he looked angry.  "Speak your wish human, but know this, we will not grant you riches or the deaths of your enemies, and there will be a cost."

Liam nodded.   "I know the history from the time of Nemed.  I accept the terms of the bargain, provided that both sides know first what they are agreeing to."

Again the king's eyes widened.  This time he didn't look quite so upset.  "Well spoken human.  An accord where both know the cost.  Now what do you wish of us?"

"I ask not to destroy my enemies, but a means to keep my friend safe from perverted magic.   We were attacked by flying ships today.  Our weapons did no harm to them.   I need help for my friends."  Said the young man.

"And what will you offer?" the king replied.

"I will heal the tree above us."  Liam answered.   He could see with his ability the frail and failing lines of energy flowing into and out of the old oak.

"I will need something from you both." smiled the wizened old brownie.
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Stella Gaslight
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Looking for a few good lobsters.


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« Reply #116 on: December 12, 2015, 05:15:20 am »

Donna's curtsy was a clunky thing she learned from movies and the fact she was trying to re sheath the knife didn't help.  "I don't have much but I will lend what I can."  That sounded about right from what the fairy stories said.  She was not as elegant and sweet as the princesses in the book but hopefully the fact that her heart was in the right place mattered.
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MWBailey
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"This is the sort of thing no-one ever believes"

rtafStElmo
« Reply #117 on: December 12, 2015, 07:38:02 am »

"Meri? Wilfred?"

"they are not anyone I know," Meri said, an edge to her voice that hinted at a violent urge; the katana's hilt suddenly jutted from a shadow at her hip. "I would suggest your Khukri I instead of the pistol, Al," she said, "And concentrate on it's dream-dispelling power. These people feel like Oni but are, I think, more western..."

Al drew the ancient tibetan's huge knife, repeating and repeating the words that the old man had chanted when driving away the fever and nightmare's of his mining partner all those years ago in the amazonian goldfields - and to his surprise the edge shone with a purplish light, almost as if reflecting a lamp of that color from far away. In response to what seemed like a whim, he touched the flat of the blade to the back of Jace's head, about where it would lie on a pillow if she slept on her back. Slowly, the mind-blinding light faded from her mind.

To her slight surprise, the Vampiress also felt the effect of the knife; it felt as if her own aura were being tested with a razor-sharp blade, and the fog that had begin to cloud her mind seemed to fall away.. "Name yourselves," Meri addressed the figures, hand to the katana's hilt, and a deadly cold in her voice.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2015, 07:53:19 am by MWBailey » Logged
CPT_J_Percell
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« Reply #118 on: December 12, 2015, 09:37:15 am »

"Put your weapons aways!" Wilfred ordered meri, jace and all, "And will you use your voice and not the mind, she has not had the training yet!" Wilfred ordered the cloaks.
One turned to look at him, after a few moments he gave a slight nod and the others turned away. "This way." wilfred said as the cloaks started walking away.
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Stella Gaslight
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« Reply #119 on: December 12, 2015, 01:06:10 pm »

"Friends of yours?."  Jace asked blinking the last after images away.  "They come on a bit shiny."  She was a bit nervous now and feeling rather out of her depth.
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CPT_J_Percell
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« Reply #120 on: December 12, 2015, 02:05:44 pm »

"Aquantences," Wilfred said leading the way, "not very sociable, but thats the way they communicate in private." They weaved there way around between building and stalls the people parting to let them through.
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Stella Gaslight
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« Reply #121 on: December 12, 2015, 03:25:59 pm »

"They communicate with blinky lights?" The smells of food were getting stronger and Jace's tummy rumbled making her rather sorry she skipped breakfast. They seemed to be in almost a food hall now with titbits cooking on every side.  she was considering asking Al if any of this stuff was truly edible.
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Ranger Reid
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« Reply #122 on: December 12, 2015, 03:37:43 pm »

The sprite that had greeted Liam and Donna spoke   "The Hunter and the Warrior standing before the King.   Let there be an bonding for the good of all.   The Hunter will provide one of the tools of his trade.  A bullet with the sacred remains.  The Warrior will provide her blade which she has foolishly brandished at the king.  And we will provide that which you seek.    Do all accept this accord?"

Liam nodded solemnly and waited for Donna.   He could only hope that the blade was not precious to her.
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Stella Gaslight
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« Reply #123 on: December 12, 2015, 04:10:41 pm »

Donna took out the knife and sheath. It was a cheep thing with an etched dragon and worn paste gems with a leather and cardboard sheath. There was a time when Donna would have fought them, the knife was one of the last gifts he had given her before he died and for a while had made it one of her holiest of holys.  Liam had changed that.  With him she saw that holding on to her loss was hollow and that holding her heart closed was only hurting herself.  The time for grief had passed and it was time to move on.  "Here I don't think it is doing me much good anyway."
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« Reply #124 on: December 12, 2015, 04:22:39 pm »

"The blinking lights are images. They sense you ability but are not aware of the level of your control." Wilfred said over his shoulder, "Yes she is knew to all this and is still learning." he spoke to one of the cloaks as if they had asked him a question,"No its a recent development and no she is sensitive to the green light." The cloak nodded, " Yes that is why I have brought them down here." Wilfred said answering another unspoken question as they were lead to a large bulkhead door.
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