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A thief's retribution.

Marisa walked to Tear labs resisting the urge to run from her fate having already dropped her weaponry back with Nitori. No she'd face it head on and would deal with the consequences. Reaching the front gate she'd stared simply as she wondered how she was going to do this. Would... someone just see her and bring her in or would something else happen? Well hopefully she hadn't missed the time limit but she had a feeling she had. Oh well, she had to do some stuff anyways. She was a busy woman and she still held up most of her side of the threat to show up.

Quote:i'm back to finish this up.
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"While shooting concentrate your mind, gently muttering the spell to the Mini-Hakkero. Aiming at someone you don't like, a magicannon of love will be unleashed!"

As Marissa draws closer to the front gate of TEAR Labs, she can't help but notice every turret on the wall turn to face her. While certainly an intimidating sight, the fact they hadn't opened fire is a good sign, right? The four guards in heavy black armor outside the gate seem to notice her a split-second later, though with a far different reaction.

"Well well well! Look at that, Tank," one of the four guards hollers out, lifting his repeater up over his shoulder. "The little thief showed her pretty blonde face. Looks like you owe me a drink!"

"She's over a week late. Don't owe you a damn thing," the second guard, Tank, responds. 

"Quiet down you two," a third guard snaps, the chevron on his chest clearly placing him as the highest rank of the gate guards. "You there, Marisa Kirisame. You're under arrest. Come quietly and we won't have to hurt you."

To suit his words, the higher ranking guard strides forward, pulling a set of handcuffs from a pouch at his side. "Oh no," Marisa mutters. "Big scary guards threatening me to do exactly what I came here to do. Whatever shall I do?"

The sarcasm was lost on the chevron. "Not a damn thing, that's what."

Chevron roughly pulls her arms behind her back, locking the handcuffs around her wrists and just as Marisa goes to take a step towards the gate, something clicks in place around her neck. "And this will make sure of it.

"Top of the line in Prime detainment. Better get used to the feel, thief, cause this baby isn't coming off anytime soon. Now get moving. I'm told the boss wants a word with you."

If it wasn't for the helmet, Marisa would've swore he was smiling. Even so, she let herself be lead indoors, not that she could've stopped him if she wanted at this point. This collar, whatever it was doing, it was certainly effective. Her movements felt sluggish, her mind just foggy enough to prevent any deep thought, and all of her abilities might as well not have existed. She felt, well, normal. Sort of.

Before she realized it, she was handed off to some unmarked trooper in black armor and shepherded into an elevator. Was the door locked? She couldn't remember to save her life at this point. What was she even doing here? 

As Marisa pondered the question, she was led deeper into the facility, the surroundings blurring together until she was stopped in front of a large metal door that looked like it belonged on a starship rather than an underground research lab. A blue light scans over the two of them before the door slowly opens. Several large slabs of metal, easily resulting in a door that's a foot thick, rotates open revealing none other than Captain Keller.

Marisa's mind focuses as she sees the six-foot-tall man in the flesh, taking in the finer details of his tidy white hair and slightly glowing red eyes before starting to drift off once more. The Captain looks the thief over and smiles, casually lifting a mug up to his lips before setting it to the side. 

"You're late Miss Kirisame," he says calmly, somehow already at her side. "Though, since you did deign to come of your own volition, the least I can do is cancel the order on your companions. A shame really. We might've been able to use Nitori.

"Regardless, I would've much preferred you come on time. Now we have to go through an entire reprogramming before we can begin proper tests, and there's no guarantee you'll come away unscathed from such a thing."

Keller gently lifts Marisa's chin so that he can look into her slightly clouded eyes before continuing. "Should the process be completed successfully, your debt will be considered paid in full. Should you make any attempt to resist, and I do hope you remember this clearly, I will reinstate the order to capture your companions, namely this..." Keller casually glances to a display on the wall. "Alice Margatroid. You will be disposed of and she will take on your debt."

Turning away from the collared prime, Captain Keller issues a few commands that are lost to Marisa and she gets led away.

Quote:This has become a quest for redemption. This will be a varient on the "There Are No Lines" quest already in place and will have simlar minimum word requirements to complete. I personally recommend 8k.

Additional requirements needed:
-Must go through a "reprogramming" scene

I'll be happy to help out with ideas if you get stuck along the way. While this is meant to be a punishment, I hope you rise to this challenge rather than try to blaze through it. Best of luck!
In battle it is important to keep a sharp blade

But it is by far more important to keep a sharp mind.

Marisa was getting pushed around and she while something screamed in the fog of her mind to retaliate and escape it was silenced by the deafening mental fog. So she continued to be ushered through the pristine, white, tiled, halls. Reaching the elevator she entered as they went down into the basement levels. 

Taking a left she entered a darkened room with unsteady steps as it was quiet except for the footsteps and machines running in the background.

A bright light turned on in the room as the witch blinked away the pain as her unfocused eyes looked around slowly. In the room it was lightly furnished, toilet, bed, sink all in metal riveted to the ground, and an white psychiatric outfit in a dull blue color lying on the beds simple sheets. The walls were a simple light blue in nature, and the roof with the floor were that same tiled white as outside. On the wall behind the sink was a mirror also bolted to the wall

A voice came out behind her as her caretaker spoke with a deep and commanding voice. “Change into the clothing then knock once your finished.” Pushing the woman lightly into room the door slammed behind her.

Walking over to the bed Marisa picked up the clothing with a gentle hand as she started to undress letting the pieces of her identity fall to the side. Then began slipping the gown on feeling the cheap clothing drape over her skin. Slipping her shoes off then her socks she grabbed the socks and pants on the bed before slipping them on as well.

Taking one last look at the clothing on the floor she began to fold them with practiced motions. Once laid on the bed neatly, walking over to the door she gave it two short light knocks. Opening the door the man nodded slightly as he motioned her to follow. The witch would follow with a unsteady but determined look to her fate.

Quote:had nothing to continue it with and I should get a post out so...
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"While shooting concentrate your mind, gently muttering the spell to the Mini-Hakkero. Aiming at someone you don't like, a magicannon of love will be unleashed!"

The sound of footsteps was the only sound that could be heard while the witch was being corralled into a room. Once inside the witch could see the massive amount of medical equipment. After a few seconds they started to manhandle her into a chair causing her to start to weakly struggle against the men and women. To call it a fight would be over exaggerating it, she lacked the strength to really make an effort against her captors.

Once strapped in time seemed to slow down to a crawl while machines went to work. A scream ripped from her lips against her will as electricity rushed through her veins. After only in reality a few seconds the electric shock ended as her vision and her mind hazy. Around her various men and women went to work. 

One in particular was writing stuff down while they sifted through the many memories of the witches mind seeing how they could rearrange these memories and adjust them to their advantage. There was one bright idea in the head though. It wasn’t to gain power, nor was it to gain immortality at least not anymore. While those dreams and aspirations were quite powerful in guiding her actions it was actually something more humanitarian, to greenify the dunes using magic. While the mind reader prepared to head to the doctor to relay his findings. Until a memory came into sight, it burned with an intensity of a sun forcing the doctor to look and see what the memory was.

It was her hatred for the power-hungry bastards that ran the city and then ran and hid only desiring power and not the responsibility for such power, she even considered Gilgamesh  to be not much better than the power hungry gods and leaders of the various factions in her old world. Blinking a few times they began to tweek and manipulate her memories to intensify these powerful emotions.

After a few hours the first session was over with a silent witch who was mentally thanking it to be over. Being released from her bindings the witch shakily got off the chair as she used the arm as to keep her from collapsing. With a few doctors surrounding her to help her from collapsing and hurting herself. But she forced herself to walk by herself, even in her foggy mind she wouldn’t give these people the knowledge that she needed their help her pride wouldn’t allow it. What she didn't know however was that they all were like this and they all broke down eventually.

Quote:word count 730/10000
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"While shooting concentrate your mind, gently muttering the spell to the Mini-Hakkero. Aiming at someone you don't like, a magicannon of love will be unleashed!"

Time passes in the room with nothing to show if it was day, night, or even if the outside world had ended since she had been stuffed in it. And the only way she could have any decent way of telling time was her stomach and the three meals they slid into her room via a small hatch , and even those blurred together in her foggy and unfocused mind. The few times she tried to talk to any of the other patients as she had come to call them.They however had failed to respond most of the time, empty husks of what once was a mentally sound person.

The problems started to arise when they found out she had run away from home of her own volition and had lived in a forest alone for most of her life. The mind reader that had found her brightest dream was assigned to giving her help, and so they would oblige.

Marisa had a faint idea something was off when they took her a different way than her normal schedule. Those internal warning sirens grew when she entered a plush and comfy room that reminded her of the Scarlet Devil Mansion’s rooms, except it was brighter and less red. “Come sit and we can get started Ms. Kirisame.” The voice was neutral as they sat in an expensive looking leather chair.

Marisa tentatively stepped across the clean carpet as she looked towards the doctor quiet wondering if she had done anything wrong. “A-am i in trouble?” Her foggy mind couldn’t comprehend what if anything she had done wrong and she was shaking visibly under the person’s stare.

A short shake of the head with a “No, you aren’t here because you are in trouble.” gave the witch some hope as she relaxed some. The man continued to speak. “No you are here because while we were doing stuff with you we came across some things that had happened when you were a child. And Keller has given the green light to help make sure these issues are dealt with.”

The man would give a slight smile as he picked up the report he personally had started for her. “Now what do you want to talk about?” Marisa gave a confused look towards the psychologist as her mind started to roar with much needed activity even with her mind clouded.

“I can talk about anything?” The black and white witch asked with an excitement that only grew larger with the nod from the Psychiatrist.

“I don’t see why not.” The man wanted the woman to get talking and lower her guard around him so he could ask the big questions.

With an enthusiastic nod Marisa started with a question. “Well what is your name?” The man nodded a simple question, likely something to test the waters. Even in her less than completely mentally active state this person was still wary, they would do her well with what Keller had planned for her.

“My name is Jackson. It’s nice to meet you Ms. Kirisame. I assume you’re time here has been fairly satisfactory?” He kept a calm and friendly demeanor as she poured some water for himself.

After a few moments the witch replied as she sunk into her chair. “It’s been boring. Some books would be nice.” Her clipped tone showed she was hiding more than she was willing to admit.

Jackson smirked continuing with the topic on books. “Any genres you like Ms. Kirisame? Mystery perhaps, or maybe a good adventure novel?”

“Oh, I don't have much in the way of preference.” She didn’t know how much she wanted to say to him and yet this she was having a conversation. One that didn’t involve the other person not speaking or just grunting and it; well it felt nice to have a conversation where she was being treated somewhat like a normal human being for once.

Drinking from his glass before setting it on the table Jackson stood up before walking towards his bookshelf. Looking through his fairly extensive library he stopped on a hardback and pulled it out gently before walking to the witch and holding the book out. “I think you might enjoy this book. All I ask is that you keep this book in good condition while it’s in your care.”

Marisa felt her mouth turned upwards ever so slightly against her better judgement as she took the book from his grip. Looking at the cover she saw the title Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. And began to read it curled up in the chair.

Quote:word count is 766 and total word count is 1496/10000
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"While shooting concentrate your mind, gently muttering the spell to the Mini-Hakkero. Aiming at someone you don't like, a magicannon of love will be unleashed!"

Marisa looked at the chessboard and was wondering how Jackson had out maneuvered her so efficiently. A light chuckle could be heard across the chess board as another piece moved into place. “And I believe that is checkmate once again.” Looking with wide eyes the witch did indeed see she had been defeated again.

“How? How has this happened so many times?” The girl racked her mind to try and figure out what went wrong and why.

“You need to learn patience and when to strike Ms. Kirisame.” Jackson in a tone a teacher would use with a student. “You like to rush down your opponents but as you can see, your defensive game is weak, allowing me should I get past your offensive to smash whatever remaining defenses are left and give me the win. A castle does no good if it isn’t protected so to speak.”

Marisa shook her head having a completely different idea on how combat should be done. “Firepower is everything. If you pound the enemy into submission quickly and efficiently you will have no need for strong defenses. Speed is the name of the game.” The witch would say with a neutral voice as the man nodded in response.

“I can understand where you are coming from but how many fights have you won?” He said simply drinking some coffee much to the annoyance of his patient.

“That’s a low blow and you know it. I might not have won an actual fight here but i was going up against people like Yuuka, who back home is highly dangerous.” She exclaimed with an annoyed expression while her stomach throbbed from being punched through like a piece of paper. “She’s honestly terrifying when you get her mad enough i tell you! Besides I didn’t have all my magic I had back home.”

Nodding the psychologist set down his coffee cup, then began setting his side up again and motioning Marisa to do the same with her side. Once both players were ready another game had begun and for once Marisa was beginning to connect to someone.

Her mind was slightly clearer here in this room. Not enough to make any complex plans of escape if she wanted too mind you but enough to give a decent conversation. And it helped heal her wounds as a child.

Quote:Word count 1887/10000, 391 words
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"While shooting concentrate your mind, gently muttering the spell to the Mini-Hakkero. Aiming at someone you don't like, a magicannon of love will be unleashed!"


Subject Kennedy:  Deceased. Estimated revival time - 2 days
Reclamation team preparations complete. Ready to be deployed.

Subject Hokori:  On leave. No complications expected.
Tracking device fully functional. Audio recorder fully functional. 

Subject Cerberus:  Stasis.
No change in vitals.

Subject Atlas:  Test completed. 9% performance increase.
Stabilization of power at 84%. Technicians request the use of Gaia platform for…

Subject Marisa:  Reprogramming in progress.
Requesting additional input.

Subject Koal:  Test successful. Recovery time - 5 days
Structure bonded without issue. Estimated destructive output increased 400%.

Subject Frank:  Stasis.
No change in vitals.

Subject Davids:  Deployed to tier 7. Under monitoring.
Minor lacerations detected. No further complications.

Subject Maverick:  Solitary Confinement.

Subject:  Marisa Kirisame
Status: Reprogramming in progress

Report by Commander Mathews-
The initial complications we encountered during the early days of the procedure have only magnified with continued use of current methods. Where most primes we have had to reprogram needed to be weakened to a state of subservience, Marisa's vitals and in turn her brain patterns would turn completely hectic at the slightest application of our machines. Upon further inspection, we believe this to be the result of her below average constitution and have taken notes for future subjects.

A different tactic a handfull of our telepaths have suggested is providing much better results. Lieutenant Jackson has been assigned as a psychologist for the subject and is using her own natural brain patterns to plant the necessary hooks and pathways for reprogramming. As of this report, progress is advancing in leaps and bounds with completion expected before the weeks end. In addition, scans are indicating an affinity for the Lieutenant, no doubt arising from the more hands-on approach.

Recommend Lieutenant Jackson be given direct command of the subject as her handler.

End of report.

Message to Commander Mathews:
Your recommendation appears sound. Ensure the Lieutenant is adequately prepared as soon as possible and keep a close watch on the subject's scans. 

Keep up the good work, Commander.
-Captain Michael Keller
In battle it is important to keep a sharp blade

But it is by far more important to keep a sharp mind.

Marisa laid against the bed flipping through the pages of the book while deep in thought mulling over her time in Nippur. She cared for the common person in the city that wasn’t something she was arguing but she knew primes could do amazing things creating things out of nothing so why did they do nothing to improve the dunes? She could tell from a glance they had the ability to do so if they put their minds to it yet they did nothing. It infuriated the simple hardworking human who had an equal chance to be a secondary as a prime yet was given this chance to become something more than she was.

Getting up and closing the book she started to pace around the Psychologists room muttering to herself in annoyance bouncing from topic to topic before heading back to her room unable to calm herself down in this state. Once back into her room and with less mental capabilities she simply sat down looking towards the ceiling with a blank look as one particularly strong memory was running through her head through the fog and fluff filling her head.

It wasn’t anything particularly special or unique being rather mundane in nature with a very young version of Marisa on the shoulder of her Master. The two were out late looking up towards the stars with Mima teaching her charge the stars and constellations.

The vengeful spirit pointed to one very specific star before speaking. “Polaris, or the North Star, if you ever need guidance just think of this star and you’ll find your way in this unforgiving world, my little witch.” Marisa nodded in response as she raised a tiny hand towards the sky to try and hold the star.

“Lady Mima?” The young child said as she reached for the stars. A hum could be heard from the Spirit before she responded to the trainee.

“Yes, Marisa?” The spirit asked simply as they turned to look towards the child.

“Once I become as amazing as you, will i be able to reach the stars and touch them with my hands?” The child asked with wonder in their eyes much to the amusement of her guardian.

Finally after a few seconds of thought Mima responded with an answer. “Not only will you be able to reach the stars, you’ll be able to turn things into gold, and so much more with my tutelage nothing will be entirely out of your reach my young apprentice, but only if you put your mind and body to it young one.”

A yawn could be heard from the young witch as she rubbed her eyes mumbling out a response. “Mmmm, not tired.” 

“Alright then, we’ll keep on talking about the constellations, Ursa Major is right there.” The spirit pointed to a group of stars as the two talked the night away. The memory fades into the background with a melancholy sigh from the witch who simply looked at the pages of the book blankly.

Meanwhile the psychologist was preparing something for the witch. Everything was working towards one very intricate goal and the wrong moment could undo days and weeks of work. The consequences if Marisa were to retract back into her mind were too great. 

Finally, with a few keystrokes of their keyboard finished up the planning part of the plan to push Marisa in the direction Keller wanted. All that was left was to put the plan into action.

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"While shooting concentrate your mind, gently muttering the spell to the Mini-Hakkero. Aiming at someone you don't like, a magicannon of love will be unleashed!"

Marisa walked into the office and sat down as her handler finished up his report on his various patients. “Ah Marisa it’s good to see you again, please sit down and if you are alright with it i’d like to talk about something that is pertinent to you.” The man said with a calm voice while he pulled out a folder and opened it before grabbing and pulling out a thick report, and setting it down all the while staring at Marisa.

“You want to atone for your crimes, correct Ms. Kirisame?” The tone from Jackson went from being warm and calm to being a cold, hard, neutral tone waiting for an answer from the Japanese woman.

Marisa grew silent as her mind started to freak out at the mere idea of dealing with her consequences. The Witch was always one to run away from her problems and keep them in a dark corner and now she was cornered with her crimes surrounding her.

Jackson leaned forward with one hand on the desk while they motioned with the file in their other before speaking his voice always calm and collected but still having enough emotion to worry the witch who has only up to this point ever heard the man being completely calm and collected. “Do you want to atone for your crimes Marisa? Do you know how many people won’t have fathers and mothers returning to their wives and husbands?”

Marisa finally got her mental footing back and began to speak with a slight hint of fear in her voice, alongside a terrible urge to know just how many deaths she caused in her mayhem. “No… how many?”

Jackson sighed before he pulled out individual photos of each of the men and women who perished in the break in. “Forty families have lost a loved one for your actions, forty who will never return to their homes and meet their loved ones.”

“Let's watch the breach shall we Kirisame.” pulling up a dataverse device they pulled up the security footage, moving the footage to the moment the Master Spark bored into building like it was papier-mache and soon after the sounds of gunfire and magic filled the video clip occlud anything else out while Marisa simply stared at the screen with a blank look as she took in everything her wake of destruction caused.

Then she saw the fire fights where she gave no mercy to her opponents. When did her mental ideology change to kill anything in her path? She had stuck to the Spell Card rules as much as possible but here she was murdering guards who were trying to stop her from doing whatever she was their to do. “Why did I kill them…” The witch's voice was full of concern and confusion being unable to understand her actions.

“I never killed back home, i don’t understand why I would do such a thing. The Spellcard rules are a thing to keep unnecessary bloodshed to a minimum.” The Witches muttered to herself while she watched each death in full with a feeling of pure dread incessantly through her veins while the sound of screaming could be heard the sounds and fake smells burn a clear image in the woman's mind. 

“And that’s just short term losses Miss Kirisame. That technology you stole was going to help deal with the overpopulation that Coruscant faces on a day to day problem. But due to the loss of that equipment precious man hours and resources will have to be spent rebuilding the prototypes leading to a further loss of life.” Jackson said with a calm tone while the man shut down the video of Marisa’s attack on the laboratory's. The man then began to walk around the plush room with a glass of water taking a sip from the cup.

“But… why don’t you expand?” Came the naive reply from the magic user while she looked towards the psychologist with her hand cupping the cheek of her face.

Jackson gave a silent sigh before speaking. “The Empire is great in many respects and while some of the complaints against the government are honestly justified. It’s main problem is a cold war with Camelot, alongside a lack of funding for such a project and many other problems.”

“So there isn’t a way to make the Dunes a viable place to live?” Came the next response which caused Jackson to raise an eyebrow.

“Mind explaining more on what you mean, make the dunes a viable to live in?” The man was honestly intrigued by the question and wished to know more about this.

Marisa nodded before speaking honestly. “It wasn’t anything beyond an idea floating in my mind but with technology and magic working in tandem. I could see with enough testing and help from Nitori and any others I come across that the dunes could hold life once again. If this were to work there would be plenty of land to spread across and it would help deal with the food problem.”

Jackson grew quiet thinking the idea over. It wasn’t entirely out there the Lieutenant realized considering the Pale Moors had a similar thing in reverse from what they’ve heard about the verse. Though this would be the first time something like this would be embarked on. The repair of an entire verse was a large order still, and he was incredibly cautious about the whole ordeal but he thought it was possible.

Finally the psychologist spoke. “It is entirely possible that something like that could happen. But like i said before, the Empire has neither the resources nor the funds to allocate such a venture without a working prototype or data that says it would be widespread. If someone were to do such an idea they’d have to go it alone at the start before showing it to the government.”

Marisa nodded finding the answer she was looking for all the while picking up on the not so subtle cue from her handler. “So it’s possible, alright i think i understand a bit better, thanks for clearing that up for me.”
Jackson decided it would be a good idea to move into the next and final topic for the day they had. “Marisa since you’ve been a good patient, how would you like to leave the labs for a day?”

These words seemed to perk the prime up with a mixture of surprise and confusion. “Outside as in outside the labs?”

A nod came from the Lieutenant while they continued to explain the details. “Yes, you would be allowed to leave the Labs for a day though you would be with a couple guards and me of course. We would visit a few specific places and if we have any other time i don’t see why you couldn’t see some of the sights of Coruscant.”

“But what about Keller wouldn’t he be opposed to something like this?” This confused the witch greatly but Jackson had a reply already prepared for such a question.

“What Keller doesn’t know won’t hurt him.  This’ll be our dirty little secret, just between you and me. Unless of course you want to stay here in your cell.” This seemed to kill any further questions or complaints from the woman as she didn’t want to squander a perfectly good chance to leave the small room she called her home and see people besides Jackson who would talk to her.

“Good, you’ll have a fresh set of clothing to help let you blend into the crowds when we head out. Oh look at the time, we will have to continue this next time. As always it’s nice to talk to you Miss Kirisame.” Marisa looked over at the clock and saw that it was time to return to her cell. The sound of footsteps could be heard while Lieutenant Jackson sat down and began to write out a request for specific files on the Dunes.

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"While shooting concentrate your mind, gently muttering the spell to the Mini-Hakkero. Aiming at someone you don't like, a magicannon of love will be unleashed!"

Marisa stared towards the guards with a frown while she looked towards the outfit that was being given to her for going outside. Taking the clothing she set it down on her bed before feeling the tough clothing. A small fear ran through her head wonder how they knew the dimensions she needed but it was squashed as quickly as it was formed.

Closing her eyes and tipping her head to the ceiling, a myriad of questions, concerns, and ideas ran through her head. Was she really going to be able to go out into the tier and see something new and not this stale, unnaturally white and grey tile and paint scheme. This unnaturally clean… prison of her own making. Too clean and not dirty like the magic forest she called home.

Looking towards the set of clothing she started to slip it on ignoring the odd feeling of pants and a shirt. Sighing she walked calmly towards the door giving a nod to the guards walking out of the bland room. Past the unnerving quiet and the few potted plants she soon reached the elevator and stopped before putting the last part of the outfit on a hat over her shoulder length hair.

Entering the elevator two of the guards took her up to the monument. Looking over at an analog clock she could see it was about noon and her stomach grumbled in response. After a few seconds the doors would ding before opening showing a small interior plaza where the hustle and bustle of the labs was in full swing. Marisa tentatively walked out wondering why this wasn’t outside. She was promised she would be able to leave and yet they lied to her. Grumbling as her excitement quickly soured she walked out and started to head to the monument.

Tipping her cap down to cover her eyes she stared towards the memorial. It was minimalist in nature only having a piece of scorched and bent metal alongside cracked and blackened concrete. Surrounding the design was pictures of everyone who died. Ignoring the various stares of the scientists and guards who likely knew who she was, she glanced over to one of the pictures of a man.

Upon the picture frame was a name etched onto it. She gave a sigh before moving onto the final part of the memorial, various flowers spread around it a final goodbye to friends, co-workers, and maybe even family. Marisa shook her head slightly before starting to walk away ignoring the various glares from the men and women who worked at the labs who’d like nothing more than to hurt this prime.

The tension was so thick one could cut it with a knife until someone walked forward. It didn’t matter who it was all that mattered was that Marisa stopped and stood her ground. “So your the one who killed people huh. You think those guards will keep you safe? Oh i think they’d want nothing more than to harm you as well you fucking scum.”

Marisa sighed as Kellers words rang in her mind, warning her to be good or else her friends would be in trouble. “So what?” Her voice, crisp and clear retorting the insults turning her head away from the person.

“So what… what sort of weak response is that?” The seething tone could be felt while Marisa began to walk back to the elevator only to stop. Turning her head to look over her shoulder she spoke.

“That’s the sort of response of someone who’s trying to protect their friends. And I'll deal with barbs, attacks, and harm to make sure they don’t get any more involved than they already have.” Marisa’s voice had a sort of finality in it before she walked away again trying to keep her quickly thinning patience in check. 

Unfortunately for her the person wasn’t quite done with her walking up to her and holding her shoulder to stop her. “We aren’t done yet. I have some retribution to dish out.” It was finally at this point the guards decided to get involved only for Marisa to stop them with a single movement of her hand.

“No, If he wants to continue this let him. Just know this is all on him if he gets hurt. I tried to leave and my friends will not get involved because I couldn't leave without a fight.” Marisa shook her head slightly before waited to see what the person would do.

After a few seconds of standing off between the two the person made a tch sound before walking away. Marisa while she kept a cold and hard exterior was internally sighing relief at the fact she wasn’t getting into a fight. Finally she got back into the elevator with little other problems and thus was ushered back into the bowels of the laboratory to begin testing.

Tapping her foot quickly she didn’t know what they had in mind for her but she was starting to hate the cooped up nature of her activities and it was beginning to show in her actions. She needed space to move around and not this. “How much longer do i have to follow along this till i can leave?”

Even if her ability to manipulate Omnilium and most of her powers were sealed by this collar she still had her mind to fall back on. Something she had been using lightly over this imprisonment. A ding could be heard and the two elevator doors opened to show the home she’d been forced to accept while she dealt with her crimes.

She then decided to shove her actively planning mind into the backburner for a time when she could think about it during a safer time. Soon she found herself back in her room staring towards her walls with a calm expression before heading to her bed and laying down on it.

She then spoke out calmly and clearly to no one in particular. “I wonder if you have a Satori working for you Keller? Mind reader. It’s quite strange i have to admit. I come in here and my usually active mind gets smothered by some power raises some questions. Though, If I could have one thing beyond leaving it’d have to be a nice war jar of sake” With that final sentence she shut up running her hands around the collar doing very little in terms of physically messing with it.

The hours ticked by with no real value till Marisa got up and started to scratch sigils and a very basic magic circle into the tile. Using whatever magic power she had left to her devices she’d been working on this work an entire week. Slowly but surely building up wards against various mental attacks. Against a sufficiently powerful psyker they wouldn’t do a thing to help keep any intrusions at bay. She might call herself paranoid but after the fact her mind had been slow and unfocused for a while had only given her concerns after seriously thinking about it.

Hopefully either Keller got tired of  Marisa and let her out, finished up her required time to stick around or she herself found a way to break out. But Keller and T.E.A.R. Labs weren't the only ones watching Marisa’s actions with a close eye. A group of shadowy individuals also had quite the interest in Marisa after all. This only intensified with their infiltration of various Empire workers and officials, mostly low ranking people originally who had risen up in the ranks.

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"While shooting concentrate your mind, gently muttering the spell to the Mini-Hakkero. Aiming at someone you don't like, a magicannon of love will be unleashed!"

Quote:Second Storyteller coming in.

Quietly through the night, the slow engine rumble of a Lambda-Class shuttle informally dubbed “The Runner” swept past the buzzing city skyline. The engines themselves hummed in unison a deep baritone tune. The Runner’s inverted Y wings cutting the air like butter as they adjusted course and went towards tier four’s ground level before stopping the decent altogether just to keep the aircraft several feet high. It was soon to arrive at its destination. 

Slowing down its pace, even more, the shuttle cut a right turn and found itself near towards the back entrance of a facility that readout as T.E.A.R labs. The building itself couldn’t be any more than three stories high. Nearing closer, someone with observant eyes could see that the back entrance was no ordinary back door but a small docking bay. The Runner herself slowed to a complete crawl. 

Punching in several commands, Chief Pilot Michel geared the ship for landing procedures. Unknowingly to him Imperial Protector Faunyer silently lurked into the cockpit and stepped behind him and his copilot Auren. Faunyer himself was intent on watching and making sure the shuttle passed its landing procedures and properly gain access to the facility. Clearing his throat, Michel motioned with his right hand towards the ship’s command console, his index finger activating the Runner’s built-in comlink.

“This is Chief Pilot Alexander Michel of the Runner, we are requesting for direct landing sequences, over,” Michel spoke clearly and released the comlinks activation tab. 

On the direct opposite side, an officer swerved his chair towards the docking bay observation deck’s main console. Adjusting his headset, the officer activated the console’s comlink. 

“Landing codes are being sent Runner, please fold your wings and stand by.” The officer said at the same time waving and gaining the attention of another Imperial to come close. 

“Tell Captain Keller, his visitors have arrived.” The officer shot out his command in a quick tone, the other gave a nod before rushing away.              

With the press of a single button, the Runner’s wings folded upwards at a slow steady pace. Staring at the console for a mere few seconds, its dashboard rung a series of numbers that made up the docking bay’s landing coordinates. Turning to face Auren, they both gave a slight nod to one another. Switching his gaze back to the ship’s console, he punched in several commands and locked the coordinates into the navigation system. Some time passed and the comlink hissed back to life. 

“This is Captain Keller, Pilot Michel I need to speak to one of your passengers for a moment.”

Without even getting a chance to speak, Faunyer’s ebony cloak motioned to the comlink. Leaning in over both pilots, his right black and red gauntleted index finger pressed the activation tab. 
“This is Imperial Protector Faunyer, you may speak.”  

Dead air and static hissed for a few tiny seconds before there was a response.

"Ah. The Protector himself. It's an honor. Be advised, sir, that after the recent attack there is a high likelihood of the labs being under surveillance by several undesirables. It is highly advised that you and Admiral Isard dress down if at all possible before the craft lands. I will greet you all in turn as I make my rounds to look over the oncoming troops to further protect your identities. That is unless you feel none of this is needed." Captain Keller answered. 

“If you insist Captain, is surveillance and security becoming a problem you can’t handle?” Faunyer asked in return.

"Not as of yet. I prefer to err on the side of caution so that it never reaches that point, however."

“Yes, this is a wise choice. It is good that I do not have to remind you of how important your projects are to the Emperor. I shall inform Isard of the situation and my men are at your disposal to bulk the security… use them wisely Captain.” Faunyer said his head briefly turning back to face the door back to the ship's transport section then back forward-facing the cockpit’s window.

"Oh they will not go to waste, sir, and I am very aware of the Emperor's presence in my work. I look forward to working with you and Isard personally." Keller replied cordially.

“Good, Protector Faunyer out.”

With that Faunyer lifted his finger from the comlink’s button and motioned for the vessel's transport hold door. With a slight hiss of air, the door slid open and the Imperial Protector stepped inside. Towards the starboard bench seating Faunyer’s men sat accordingly, silently eager for his command and to directly serve their Emperor. Opposite of that sat Madam Isard on one of the many portside seatings. The woman sat quietly keeping to herself, in hand was datapad that she furiously typed her daily work into.

“Men, Madam Isard,” Faunyer got their attention, Isard herself took her different colored eyes away from the datapad. “I have just been in contact with Captain Kelle, there seems to have been an issue with security. He wants us to appear as normal Imperial Citizens to keep from gaining attention. I believe this to be a wise decision, use the refresher accordingly, that will be all.”

“A security problem, you say,” Isard spoke up before giving a slight chuckle. “I am the Director of Intelligence, if there is an issue then it will surely be a threat no more.”

Quote: This post and this post alone will deal with eyes and the removal of them. This is the only warning you will get.

Marisa was asleep while the higher up’s talked about the testing on the prime. “What are we going to do with Kirisame? Machines won’t work on her due to her… disappointingly weak constitution.” A doctor spoke with a muted tone while they looked through various files.

“Are you sure we can’t lower the strength of the machines to counteract her weak vitals?” Another replied as the quiet thump of a file was dropped into the negative pile.

“Yes, Tom the last time we tried she almost died if you recall and those were the torture devices.” The person replied in an annoyed tone before looking into another file to see if it was even worth trying. “The Commander and Lieutenant both want results and getting her to be willing to work isn’t going to be enough.”

A third voice finally spoke under the artificial lighting of the labs while the many machines hummed and chugged along quietly into the eternal night of tier four. “What about that liquid we worked on a few years back?” Setting the file down onto the metal table they opened it up to show the contents that were inside to the others.

“We need results right? Why not use this thing to help try and get some. It’s doing nothing of value just lying around in the storage rooms. I’m sure both the Commander and Lieutenant wouldn’t mind one of their least valuable assets being tested on like this.”

“Well it would finally give a use to that liquid and we still need something to test on her.” The second person agreed while they flipped through the dossier on the liquid in general.

The first person finally relented after hearing the arguments of their fellow scientists and doctors. “Fine, I'll get an examination room for tomorrow though i’m not sure it’ll even work. They shelved the research already due to being tough to even see if it worked.” Getting up the person walked away to set up the test.

A few hours passed and the sound of banging could be heard as the black and white witch groaned before she got up. “I’m up, i’m up so you can stop making a racket.” She grumbled rubbing her neck as she quickly puts on her clothing.

Getting dressed a few seconds before they opened the door she stretched her limbs. Upon seeing a doctor flanked by a pair of stormtroopers enter her room, the witch looked baffled at the doctor looked her paitent over.

“So this is Marisa Kirisame. I was expecting… something more.” Her voice was neutral before opening her file on the operation.

“What is going on? Could someone tell me?” the subjects voice spoke with confusion and annoyance lining her voice, while she wondered to no avail why a doctor was here.”

“You’ll be having an operation Ms. Kirisame, if you will please follow me.” The woman said as she turned on her heel and began to walk out with the two stormtroopers following behind her with trained movements prepared to detain the weakened prime should anything amiss arise from them.

The sound of humming and churning machinery that breathed life into the laboratory could be heard in the undertones of the facility. Soon Marisa and the others reached the examination room in particular. Looking into the room one could see that it was simply unnaturally clean being completely void of any dirt, grime, and it all seemed artificial and fake which put Marisa off kilter as she entered staring at anything of interest. 

A jar of green liquid sat placidly on a table near the operating table, while Marisa could feel some tension rising inside of herself at the whole situation. The woman walked over to the table looking over the various tools and machinery a voice too calm for Marisa’s liking could be heard from the taller woman not paying attention towards the prime. “If you could lay on the operating table that would be great.”

Warily walking towards the operating table she could feel the cold metal on her palms. After a few seconds she pushed herself onto the table with little issue and laid down with a tense look all across her.

Grabbing a needle the woman stuck it into the liquid before collecting the liquid till she had enough for the quick and easy operation. Setting it down on a tray next to Marisa she started to prep the witch which started with a gas of some sort she was forced to breath in. It was only once she was ready to stick the needle into the witch that someone interrupted the entire operation. “Julie, there’s been a change to the operation. Orders from higher up.”

A fairly incoherent Marisa could hear the two somewhat argue while the world around her spun wildly. “What do you mean orders from higher up? Didn’t we get this approved last night?” the female's voice came out perturbed as she looked at the items that would be used.

The second voice sounds nettled by the question before they responded. “Yes, I understand clearly that we had everything set up to work on the subject but the higher ups want her eyes replaced.”

Even in her almost delirious state of being Marisa could still tell something was going to happen and tried to get off the table. Her voice slurring she spoke without any real rhyme or reason. “I'm... going to read some books!” Only for her to fail to get off the operating table.

The two doctors finally looked back to the patient before they finally began to go to work. Julie set up the restraints and the machines while the other voice prepared to rip the eyeballs out completely out and replace it with new ones.

Then the machine with a needle came down, almost piercing the eye with a slow and meticulous motion as the two doctors worked in tandem. Marisa’s mind finally kicked into an active fear while she struggled against the bindings that kept her from moving an inch. She managed to get out a shaky and fear filled please before the needle pierced into the eyes.

Initially no pain was felt and Marisa almost sighed out of relief verbally. Then the world turned blindingly and the uncontrollable screaming and sobbing began. What felt like a long, torturous, hours was in reality minutes and then the last thing Marisa saw was darkness before passing out.

Quote:total word count 6,137/10,000. posts word count 1077
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"While shooting concentrate your mind, gently muttering the spell to the Mini-Hakkero. Aiming at someone you don't like, a magicannon of love will be unleashed!"

The Runner hovers slowly into position as Keller exits the Labs, making his way to the makeshift landing pad with a small member of his personal guard in tow. While this meeting with the Protector is certainly a welcome surprise, he has been dreading the arrival of the admiral for a good while now. It is an obvious fact to anyone who has any true knowledge of the machinations of the Empire’s upper echelon that Madam Isard is a barracuda in the water. A predator to be used against the Empire’s enemies, certainly, but should she smell blood in the water she would be all too happy to stab anyone in the back she was able to in order to further her own standings. Regardless, there is nothing to hide.

As the bay doors open on the shuttle numerous armed troopers come stream out, dressed in either fairly standard armor or civilian clothes, much to Keller’s joy. Striding forward away from his guards, the Captain walks up to each of the oncoming soldiers and makes a point to shake their hand, asking a few small questions along the way. It wasn’t until around halfway through the line of people that Keller comes to Isard, extending a hand much the same he has to all the rest. Slightly to Keller’s surprise, she actually shakes it.

“Admiral. It’s a pleasure to have you in my humble lab. I trust your flight was pleasant?”

“Far from the worst I had, Captain. I hear you are having issues with security.”

The Captain’s smile barely flinched at the sudden jump. There is no question in her voice. “I’m afraid you are mistaken, Admiral. These measures are simply taken as a precaution and nothing more.”

“I hope this is true, Captain.”

The unspoken threat lingered as Keller moved onto Faunyer next, extending a hand to the Protector. “Here is a meeting I hoped I’d never have to have. What brings you to my lab, Protector?”

Taking the Captain’s hand, Faunyer doesn’t betray an ounce of reaction when he finds a datastick being pressed into his palm. Keller’s hands hadn’t left sight the entire time. “Your work is of great interest to our Emperor. I am merely here to ensure things proceed smoothly.”

“Of course, of course. My lab is completely at your disposal. I do have something of note to add, however.”

If it wasn’t obvious before that Isard was listening in, at this point it’s fairly clear she was dropping all pretense, openly turning to the two men. Keller continues, “one of my guards is a psycker, you see. He is the only of the soldiers in my command with such telepathic abilities. He has informed me as you were landing that several of your men have the ability and are able to learn. If it pleases you, I’d be willing to set them up with courses while they are assisting in filling the gap left from our recent attack. All we ask in exchange is that they perform several tests to help with our understanding of the abilities.”

“Is that so. You have my permission to ask them, though they are not your guinea pigs to be played with.”

Keller smiles back at the protector. “Of course not sir. Any and all tests will be completely voluntary, the same goes for any upgrades they may wish to apply for. Most are ready for the field anyway, if not for the...”

The conversation comes to an abrupt halt as Keller’s personal assistant, Emmers, strides out of the lab at a brisk pace, stopping at his Captain’s side. “I’m sorry to interrupt, Sir, but a situation has arrived that requires your immediate attention.”

Emmers offers a datapad to Keller before turning to regard the admiral with closed eyes. Bowing his head slightly he gives a polite “Ma’am” as Keller reads.

“What seems to be the problem, Captain,” Isard asks, an air of command practically dripping from her tone.

“There was a project conducted without my authorization. I’m afraid you will have to excuse me, this needs to be dealt with immediately.” Keller’s eyes were glowing a faint red as he turned back to the rear entrance to the labs. “Emmers, see to it that our guests are settled in.” 

“Of course, sir.”

Not five minutes pass before Keller is once more in his office, a rather proud looking researcher standing across from him. By all reports, the man who had authorized the replacement of a subject’s eyes…

“I want you to tell me,” Keller starts softly. “Why you chose to perform this experiment on Marisa.”

The scientist smiles, all the world looking like he is about to reveal one of life’s great secrets. “It is rather simple, sir. After a bit of sampling and research, I discovered that the subject had an immensely high potential compatibility with Project Horus and…”

“I was aware of this,” Keller interrupts.

“Then surely you can see why I jumped on the opportunity to begin the procedure! It is truly rare to find someone with such a high compatibility quotient. It’s almost like it was begging us to begin the procedure immediately. Besides, I made sure she wasn’t scheduled for any deployments in the next seven days. She will be fully recovered in no time and be ready to begin the field…”

“She wasn’t scheduled for deployments, professor,” the Captain says quietly, “because she hasn’t yet finished her indoctrination. I do hope you realize what this means.”

The man’s demeanor drops, the true purpose of the sudden meeting starting to sink in as Keller continues. “You performed this operation on an individual not yet allied with the empire and very possibly ruined any chances we had of recruiting her.”

“Captain please…”

Keller slowly stood up from his desk, making his way closer to the offender before him. “You planted highly sensitive Imperial secrets into the body of a prime. One who could easily die and walk away with these secrets. This means you’ve created a security breach.”

Keller casually lifts the man up by his throat, holding him in the air as effortlessly as one would a ragdoll. “You created a security breach with The Imperial Protector and the Head of Imperial Intelligence literally on my doorstep.”

Keller’s eyes burned with a flaming red glow as he regarded the pleading man in his grasp. “Cap… tain… I… Can fix this,” the professor gasps out.

A simple flick of the wrist and the researcher flew across the room into the far wall. Laying in a heap and gasping for air, he looks up as Keller comes closer. “You better hope so, professor… Luckily for you, it just so happens that I can think of a way for that to happen. Guards!”

On cue, two heavily armored troopers are at the researcher’s sides. “Take him to a cell. Make sure there are eyes on him at all times, I need him alive for the time being. Also… Let me know the moment that the subject Marisa wakes up.”
In battle it is important to keep a sharp blade

But it is by far more important to keep a sharp mind.

Marisa drifted in and out of consciousness sleeping in her bed in a dream filled state. She sat in a dark room with one beam of light lighting up the area around her. Then the voices began to speak with the first being a tall stockily built man while they glared towards a much smaller, and younger version of Marisa. “You’ve brought dishonor to this family by trying to learn how to use magic. What will everyone think when they hear the only child of the Kirisame family is trying to learn how to use magic?!”

The small child held a simple scroll in their hands as they shivered, like a leaf in the wind. “Father please,” The child’s voice wavering with tears welling up.

The man shook his head before starting to walk away. “If you continue with this childish ploy Marisa then i will have no choice but to disown you.” While stern the man had an almost forgotten hint of sadness in his tone. Walking away from the young girl the memory came to a close as she fell to her knees and began to cry.

Then the darkness covered the child and the next memory began, faint and hazy at first. Then her mentor formed staring at her specifically with a dark expression. “Marisa, you failed to stop the shrine maiden from getting past you. The witch could see the purple dress and her naturally red hair noting time had passed between the first memory and this one. The vengeful spirit’s wrath 

“L-lady mima, i… wasn’t strong enough to stop them. Please forgive me.” Dipping her head towards the spirit, she could hear the scoff loud and clear.

“You’ve failed to reach my expectations Marisa try as you want in your current state you’ll never reach the strength you desire. But… you did give that child enough trouble to keep her busy long enough. You’ll get one more chance.” The woman’s voice cool and uninterested in the human infront of her.

Mima handed a tome to the apprentice before floating away in a silent command. The memory faded back into the background. Years passed by in an instant, the scarlet mist incident, the spring snow incident, the shattered moon, the fake moon incident. Past the abnormal flower blooming incident, The abnormal weather incident, the geyser spewing the spirits. Even freeing the buddhist from their imprisonment. Marisa closed her eyes as they weren’t her life now. Against all odds she had faced gods, demons, even time travelers in her quest to reach her goals, to become stronger.

Even here people questioned her skill, being wide eyed and naive had led her to believe she could work with Gilgamesh and his cult like group. But… in reality they would never work out in the long run. Her ideals ran perpendicular to theirs, one where the empire was a necessary evil to work with. It was in this moment when a very familiar animal spirit showed itself to the witch.

“You,” The black and white witch spoke with a steely voice with memories of the take over by the animal spirit became crystal clear, it’s prideful glare looking away from the human filth.

“It certainly has not been long enough Kirisame, but… the boss requests your help once more. They hate having to call upon their old puppets for help but business is business after all.” The Eagle spirit said from its perch before staring towards staring directly towards the witch.

“Good grief, i don’t want to help you and your shady organization. Last time was getting tricked and used to go against that sculptor goddess.” Marisa glared towards the eagle spirit before the two other animal spirits showed their faces.

“So you all showed your faces. The answer is still no.” The witch began to walk away from the spirits who simply stood in place.

“Then you’ll pay.” The three voices spoke in unison fading into the background and into the ground as an inky black puddle.

Marisa ignored the voice as she walked in the beam of light while the hairs on her arms began to rise at some unknown threat. As the proverbial seconds and minutes ticked by, the voice in the back of her mind screamed with animalistic intent to run. 

Then the sound of china being shattered could be heard forcing Marisa to stop moving, before forcing her head to turn towards the noise. Behind her, her shadow had begun to raise from the ground forming a shadowy monstrosity, with a pair over oversized and razor sharp teeth. Shadowy drool dripped from the front teeth in anticipation in devouring the witch.

Marisa tried to move and run but couldn’t fear had taken hold  and forced her to watch as the jaws snapped shut forcing her to scream. And she found herself in the covers of her bed with her heart pounding. Marisa laid in bed her eyes closed while the dim lights forced her to keep awake.

Opening her eyes the witch slowly got out of bed looking towards the uninteresting room. The first thing she could tell was that it was like she could see beyond her room. It was faint and she almost missed the piping but it definitely was visible. “What?” Her tone full of confusion she walked up to one of the walls and began to run her hand along where the piping was.

Once she had her fill with the interesting new power she had she began to walk to the sink. Turning the faucet on she began to wash her face and brush her neck length hair. It was during this point she saw the red irises and stopped doing anything.

The hairbrush fell out of her hand hitting the floor with a loud clack. Her breathing began to become sporadic while her legs began to give out forcing her to use the sink as a railing. “What… happened to my irises? Where are they?!” Yelling at no in particular she began to sob at the loss of one of the things she liked about herself the most. And it was all on tape as the people watching over the witch could now tell she was wide awake.

Quote:word count: 1040 total word count 7177/10000
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"While shooting concentrate your mind, gently muttering the spell to the Mini-Hakkero. Aiming at someone you don't like, a magicannon of love will be unleashed!"

“Sir, the subject is awake.”

Looking up from the report the captain had been reading, he nods towards the trooper who had poked his head in to give the message. Casually waving a hand over his desk, Keller brought up a display revealing Marisa’s chambers. Emotionless, he watched as she realized her eyes had been replaced and the subsequent breakdown immediately following. 

So many things to prepare, so many things already set in motion, all of it depended entirely on what happened next. As much as Keller hated to admit it, he was rolling the dice on the whims of this subject, and no matter how many ways he hedged his bets, it still came down to a gamble. He hated gambling. Regardless, the only way to definitively wrap up this potential security risk was to move forward, and he didn’t achieve command over these labs by being passive.

Pressing a small red button on the communicator on his desk, Keller issues a simple order. 

“Send subject Marisa to my office.”

Thirty minutes drag out before the witch was ushered into the captain’s office looking, understandably, confused and slightly worse for wear. Her eyes still red and puffy from crying, (truly a miracle of science, there, with the eyes not even being organic) Marisa quietly shuffles forward and sits in a rather comfortable looking armchair that Keller casually motions toward. Watching her sink into the chair, Keller stands up from his own and starts walking around the desk.

“Marisa Kirisame. I do believe this is the first time we’ve talked in… Oh, at least a month… Do you know who I am?”

Marisa’s face scrunches up as she tries to focus a moment before responding with, “Captain Keller.”

Keller nods and smiles as he comes up to her side, reaching a hand towards her. A sharp beep sounds followed by a clicking noise and Marisa can feel her thoughts rapidly clear. She looks down in disbelief as she realizes Keller, the one who had sentenced her to the labs in the first place, had just removed her collar.

“There,” Keller says, tossing the collar onto his desk. “Now that that is off, you should be having your thoughts clearing up. Which brings me to the matter at hand.

“Marisa Kirisame. I am deeply sorry.”

Marisa’s eyes almost look to pop out of her head as she watches this Imperial Captain bow his head to her. As crazy as this morning had been so far for her, the collar might as well still be on with how much actual thought she is able to process right now. It isn’t until he reseats himself that she manages to stammer out, “W-what for?”

“Your eyes, Miss Kirisame. The procedure was performed without clearance and, to be blunt, was executed in an extremely inhumane way. One of our lead researchers spearheaded the operation without my knowledge, even going so far as to cut all pain killers and anesthetics for better results. You can rest easy knowing I intend to hold him accountable for his actions which were, in more ways than one, borderline treasonous.”

Keller pauses a moment to let his words sink in, pressing a few buttons and showing on a monitor the researcher’s cell. Marisa leans forward to get a better look at the miserable looking man whose cell is significantly smaller than her own, though why she took particular note of that was beyond her at the moment.

“So,” Marisa starts softly, “why did you feel the need to tell me this? Why take the collar off if you just wanted to tell me ‘Oh I screwed up, but don’t you worry because the people are already being punished?’”

“Because I feel you should be the one who decides his fate and you can’t exactly make a clear decision while hindered.”

Once again, Marisa sits stunned. Looking at the face of the man on the monitor, memories of the operation start coming back. Little bits, foggy, but enough to remember his face. His words. Time slowly ticks by in silence as Keller watches Marisa think, waiting patiently for the dice to finally stop rolling. 

“I want him to go through the normal punishments,” Marisa finally says, her red eyes meeting Keller’s grey. “Let him be tried for his crimes… In front of a judge, or however that goes here.”

Keller smiles. “Is that your final decision?”

Seeing her nod, Keller passes a small tablet over towards her. “I understand how hard this is for you, Miss Kirisame, however, I have a few things here that might be able to make things a bit easier. What you are looking at is a few options for eye color… We can even replicate your old eyes down to the last detail if you so choose. There is just one catch, I’m afraid.”

Keller leans back in his chair and reaches for a mug that has so far gone untouched. Taking a small sip from it, the captain takes a deep breath is what could almost be mistaken for relief. 

“Marisa Kirisame, I am asking you if you would join the Empire.”

Raising his free hand to stop any kind of response, Keller continues, “I will have you know that 
I am aware of your current project in the Dunes. There is a non-zero percent chance we may even be able to assist in this as well… Now. I will give you twenty-four hours to think this over, without a collar, mind you, before requiring an answer. I do believe that much is fair…”

The rest of the meeting passes without much of note and, before long, Marisa is being returned to her chambers. Leaning back in his chair, Keller nurses his tea, long since cold. Hearing a small shuffle behind him, the captain doesn’t bother turning around to regard the Imperial protector he had known was there the entire time.

“It is good that you were so forthcoming about this situation, Captain,” Faunyer says, remaining in the space behind Keller’s chair. “Most I’ve been sent to observe would have attempted to sweep a situation like this under the rug.”

“With any luck, this little breach will seal itself up with her joining. I trust the scientist will be executed, sir,” Keller asks calmly.

“Unless you have other uses for him.”

Keller finishes off his mug, grey eyes burning red for the briefest of moments. “There are always uses for expendable test subjects.”

“And should she refuse your offer?”

“We will reclaim Imperial assets through any means necessary, ensure she is alive long enough for memetics to be administered, and a banishment circle used to dispose of the failed experiment.”

“Escape attempt?”

“While she was here, I had her cell outfitted to block any possibility of teleportation, tech-based or otherwise. Further, her handler has already slipped a thought into her patterns to ensure she doesn’t attempt anything stupid using one of the hooks we plant early in the program… All that’s left to do now is wait.”
In battle it is important to keep a sharp blade

But it is by far more important to keep a sharp mind.

Marisa laid in bed thinking clearly for once about the idea for working with the empire. On one hand she could see the potential for a long and fruitful relationship between the two. She could see amazing things that could form, from her joining. The empires great monetary reserves being it’s greatest strength. And the ability to get her eyes to be her natural eye color was a boon. But of course that was all that she could see being of use to her plans.

She hated working under a person if she could help it. And how Keller talked about the Empire saying it’s a non-zero chance made her more and more wary about this. Even if she wanted to hope and pray the empire would help but this all but worked to dash her hopes that they’d be willing to even help.

Then came the negatives with working with the empire. The fact that doing trade deals with both major verses would be difficult. Camelot wouldn’t work with someone exactly willingly if they found out Marisa was working with Coruscant and the Empire. Then came the offer out of the blue.

Marisa came to deal with her punishment not to get an offer, it fell in line with Okina’s offer to work with her. Gain boons but at what cost? Her eyes had already been taken by the empire due to reasons she hadn’t been given privy too. It felt too suspicious for her to ignore even if she were too push down the fact she didn’t work well with people who ordered her around.

Grabbing the side of the bed she forced herself off it before standing towards towards the door with a grimace. The witch began to form an orb of Omnilium as it changed in size and shape to her iconic furnace of magic. The hakkero gleamed in the artificial light towards marisa almost urging her forward, telling her to bust out of the building. But yet she ignored the tiny voice in the back of her head as she waited for the time to answer yes or no to Keller.

The minutes and hours ticked by while Marisa passed it alone working on her Mini-hakkero tinkering with the magical furnace. The sound of the door opening could be heard as it screeched across the tile floor. “Marisa Kirisame, it’s time.”

Looking to the pair of guards she placed the hihiirokane back into its place on the hakkero hearing a click. Pushing herself off the bed the woman pocketed the hakkero and began to walk towards the guards with a neutral expression. “Well then? You got me up, let's head to Keller.”

It was a quiet few minutes with Marisa stretching her arms giving a content sigh before entering the elevator. Upon entering the machine the doors closed with a quiet hiss, the monotone grey being the most striking feature of the box. Seconds passed while the elevator rose before it dinged opening its doors.

Marisa stepped out and started to head to the room she last met Keller in. On her way there she could see an old acquaintance. Jackson smiled towards her nodding ever so slightly before walking away having other duties to do.

Entering the room with the Captain Marisa could see Marisa sitting nursing a cup of tea looking at a data pad with a serious expression. Behind him the flicker of a shadow could be seen but after Marisa blinked it was just a normal shadow. Looking up from the data pad the man in charge honed in on Marisa before forming a slight smile as if he already knew the outcome of what was to happen. The smile was then covered up by a neutral expression. It was only now that Marisa could tell he had red eyes not unlike Victors.  

“Ah, hello Marisa. I hope you’ve figured out your answer?” The man set the data pad down as he interlocked his fingers and awaited the witch's answer.

Marisa nodded ever so slightly before sighing. “I have had plenty of time to think, and while I understand the potential value of working with the empire i can’t accept such an offer. I won’t go into details but I have done my punishment completely with the loss of my actual eyes. We’re even now.” And with that Marisa began to turn and walk away not waiting to see Keller’s reaction.

Quote: Word count 740 total word count: 7,917
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"While shooting concentrate your mind, gently muttering the spell to the Mini-Hakkero. Aiming at someone you don't like, a magicannon of love will be unleashed!"

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