RP: Elysia [Elysia] Ascension, Verse 1.5: How to (or not to) Hire a Mercenary (or four)

META_mahn

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#1
Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXIV a.m. (11:24 a.m.)


It was certainly an odd choice for Antoni to come here. Normally for lunch meetings, he'd choose somewhere simple and eat kebabs and pita bread, as Akilina's being a very high-class restaurant was suitably expensive. Normally he'd try to curb the expense, but today he decided the meeting should be here.

Maybe it was strategic. Akilina was a campaign sponsor of his, so when he requested a private room, the owner scurried off to find him one. He wasn't one for secrecy as he didn't like to have anything to hide, but he knew Barachiel liked his secrecy -- somewhat. It was a good restaraunt and he wanted to make a decent impression on the people coming, so he made sure to ask Akilina to check if he had any dirt on him or something.

Maybe it was catering for the visitors. Antoni knew they were from Yamatai, and as such, they must have had to contend with seafood plenty. It was likely they were fans of seafood, or could tolerate it at least. And they could order from a much finer menu this time around as compared to what he guessed. The prices were high, but he had the budget to take people out on fine dinners. So long as they didn't simply order too much. Although even then he could probably pay for it. He wasn't frugal with his money, and neither was his wife. She would most likely understand.

Or maybe, it was the fact Antoni had a weakness for salmon and scallops. Grilled scallops were delicious and he liked the recipe Akilina's chefs used.

He decided to order a pot of tea and a bottle of sparkling wine. He brought his own actual wine.

Crazy Second Chance, giving him so much wine his wife had to take a day off to call some storage company to help them manage all of it.

Now, to wait...

----------------------------------------------------

Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXXII a.m. (11:32 a.m.)

Meissa arrived outside the door, dressed in proper Elysian robes. She took one look up, and one look down over the place.

For a deal to go shoot things this was an awfully fine place. She better not be dealing with the mafia or something along those lines. She preferred to not have mafia obligations. At least Star Army had a definite contract she was forced to stay in unless she wanted to buy herself out.

What the hell, just get in already. The receptionist lady asked her if she had a reservation, until she got a good look at Meissa's face. Then the receptionist ushered her towards a private room.

Whoever asked her to get over here to make this deal or whatever really wasn't helping his or her "mafia" vibes. That guy must think of him or herself as some ultimate strategist or some bullshit.

Eh, if it works, it works. Star Army taught her that, at least.

 

FrostJaeger

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#2
Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXXII a.m. (11:32 a.m.)


"Meissa Nashira," said a smooth, baritone, almost silken voice from behind the brown-haired Caelisolan. It was a statement, albeit a polite one; it was a greeting that an officer would offer to an enlisted soldier under his command- which, thought the owner of the aforementioned voice, is an accurate description of our future relationship should this stratagem of mine succeed. Being a Patrician (and, at nearly two-point-five meters in height, a rather tall one at that), he towered over Meissa, yet despite being nearly eight times her age, his physical features - including his black hair and amber eyes - resembled someone only a decade or two her senior. He was clad in an iyko mostly obscured by an intricately-wrapped, violet-hued teigha, which in turn was mostly obscured by a white soh'k'tohs with a violet hem; had he not been delayed for nearly half an hour by one of his more insistent "colleagues" asking about his opinion on the five-hour-long counter-counter-counter-counter-counter-debate that had taken up the entire morning session of the Senate, Barachiel Valeria, the owner of the aforementioned voice, would have arrived long before Meissa - for he'd literally come straight from work.
 
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META_mahn

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The strange girl turned around, looking up at the gigantic Patrician looming behind her. Her posture nor her gaze had any respect, nor fear, nor resentment towards the gigantic angel. Her head was tilted, upwards, at Barachiel's face, her posture tilted, almost perpendicular to the ground, her wings pressed against her back.

"How do you...know me?" she asked. Confusion, it was. Pure confusion.

She had only had contact with few Patricians in her life. From one Patrician that was a cool guy in her childhood, to the upgrade clinic receptionist, to Arinori Sora, she only counted...three? Four?

Dammit all, this guy knew her due to the upgrade clinic records or something, probably. This was the mafia or something.
 
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FrostJaeger

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#4
Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXXIII a.m. (11:33 a.m.)


Had he been a lesser man - like, for instance, many of his peers in the Senate - Barachiel would have harshly berated the Caelisolan female standing before him for not paying him the proper amount of respect someone of his extraordinarily lofty position was entitled to. Because he was not a lesser man (and, more importantly, because he had spent close to eight decades playing politics in the Church and Senate), however, he simply chose to smile. It wasn't cold or cruel, nor was it warm or comforting; rather, it was simply...patient, like an officer who'd just been asked a question by a private fresh out of boot camp.

Like Machariel, she's used to being in control of situations - and when she isn't, she's probably used to regaining that control through brute force or a witty comment or two. I, therefore, present a unique challenge - for I cannot be defeated through strength alone, nor is she willing to openly disrespect someone of my power. Combined with her obvious lack of knowledge about who I am - unfortunate, but understandable for one who has been in the service of the enemy - and she is nervous, perhaps even scared. This needs to be remedied.


"I have my sources, Meissa-" a pause, as the Archangel stepped past the Caelisolan and keyed in the code that would open the doors leading into the private room "-including some who you may find to be quite familiar." He paused in front of the now-open doorway, then - in a move that, had it been done in public, would have effectively crippled his political career - gestured for Meissa to go in first. "After you."
 

Alex Hart

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#5
Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXXIII a.m. (11:33 a.m.)


Mat, approaching slightly behind Meissa, had not heard the beginning of the conversation. He also was unaware of the identity of the man who he saw acting suspicously. He approached the two Elysians, and placed his hand on Meissa's shoulder in a gesture of reassurance.

"Meissa, is everything okay?" He asked quietly, and then turned to face the Archangel.

"Listen sir, I don't know what's going on, but I'd like an explanation." His voice was soft, but was laced with an undertone of uncompromising steel.
 

META_mahn

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"We found the mafia," Meissa joked. "Let's go inside and see what they have to offer."

Meissa reached for the doorknob as Antoni looked out the window's heavy curtains. Well, this was going to be interesting. He knew her -- as a childhood friend. He wasn't sure how much Meissa changed over the years, but if his early experience with her was anything to go by, this would be...an interesting meeting.
 
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club24

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#7
Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXXV a.m. (11:35 a.m.)


Icarus had received the mysterious message without a sender, usually being a sign to avoid it at all costs however the specifics intrigued him along with whoever it was that knew so much about him and could mask their own identity. Since reading where it asked him to meet, the caelisolan officer had dug up whatever he could on the place and true to what he'd seen and read the venue was quite the eye pleaser. Having no idea of exactly what he was walking into the elysian had worn his usual off duty uniform consisting of a long black coat and pants that covered most of his body, his wings were neatly folded and his hair had been pushed to one side to avoid affecting his vision.

With a cool expression hiding his wound up nerves Icarus stepped into the reception room and made his way over to the desk, with no information to work with he didn't need military police training to know its better just to ask around. With no name to give all he could do was ask if there was any patrons expecting extras today as he'd received an invitation with no name attached, the receptionist nodded and smiled politely as she'd been informed of his arrival and was expecting, he simply thanked her and moved to look around the place.

From his position in the lobby Icarus took note of the few people eating in the main dining area and wondered how much a place like this must cost as he caught sight of some of the food, there seemed to be a small group by a private room presumably for a business or political meeting of some sort. Rousing him from his thoughts was the voice of the receptionist once more informing him he was to join the party in the private room, he thanked her and made his way over to the group, "Good morning all, I believe one of you contacted me with an invitation to be here today?"
 
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Alex Hart

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#8
Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXXV a.m. (11:35 a.m.)


Mat turned to the newcomer, somewhat suspicious. "Listen, I don't know what's going on right now, but I don't trust any of you." He took up a subtle hand to hand combat stance, not noticeable to the senator in the building, who most likely was not accustomed to combat.

"I want some explanations, and I want them now."

It seemed Meissa's abrasive nature had been rubbing off on Matsuvo, no pun intended.
 

META_mahn

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"Mat, he's a senator." Meissa flatly stated. "Big guy. Sits in the government. Decently good humored. People like him."

People also liked the guy sitting on the other side of the door that Meissa opened, her face expressing a hint of surprise as she saw Antoni on the other side, sipping a glass of wine.

"How many years has it been?" Antoni asked.

"Eons." Meissa joked. "Since our last battle."

"I was being serious, Meissa." Antoni replied. "I was stuck in a conference for the entire morning and I don't want to do math right now based on childhood memories."

"And I had to show my boyfriend here-" Meissa stated as she jabbed Mat in the chest with her thumb, "-how to put on traditional robes fitted for people without giant wings. And it's been two years since our last contact."

"Two years since one of the crowd-pleaser fighters in the Pankration ring's middleweight leagues suddenly stopped showing up to every competition, earning the title of crowd pleaser 'only' due to a brilliant tournament upset, and appeared on the lists of Elysians enlisted in the Star Army for subsidy and government benefit records." Antoni stated. There was another, unspoken phrase passed between the two, as their eyes met. Then the stare broke apart.

"I'm still proud of how I won that match, by the way." Meissa pointed out.

"Right. Who else is coming, Barachiel?" he asked.
 

FrostJaeger

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#10
Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXXIII a.m. (11:33 a.m.)


A heathen, here in Empyrean? What in God's name is- Barachiel bit back the half-formed interrogative he'd planned on giving voice to as he realized that the staff up front would've stopped said heathen and prevented him from defiling the establishment any further with his unholy presence - unless they'd been told to expect him. That, however, simply doesn't make sense - Raphael is a close friend who has faithfully served me for several decades, not som newly-hired Plebeian assistant. He is quite acquainted with my distaste for the soulless ones who destroyed our sacred home - so why w-

Although not quite as familiar with Yamataian body language as he was with that of his own kind, Barachiel was more than capable of recognizing the universal gesture of protectiveness and support the heathen made towards Meissa - and the implications it provoked were...unsettling, to say the least. It appears the two have become romantically involved. Heresy - albeit not surprising for a mere Caelisolan in service of the enemy - and utterly profane heresy at that, yet also of great utility, as it allows for one to serve as leverage for the othe-

The Patrician concealed his mild surprise at a heathen actually having a backbone by letting a bit of his own steel flow into his features. As repulsive as the notion is, they've definitely involved. I wonder, though - how much of this heathen's bravery and stubbornness stem from a desire to protect the woman he loves? A momentary flash of anger at being compared to a mere criminal then flickered through Barachiel's eyes, only to vanish almost as soon as it had appeared - for a very, very important asset had just arrived. So my invitation was accepted. Splendid-

The Senator's train of thought was momentarily interrupted as he recognized the threat in the heathen's tone and combat stance, ignored it - Barachiel, after all, wasn't just accustomed to combat; rather, he was very, very proficient at it and, unlike the vast majority of his retired colleagues, had never lost the intangible "edge" gained from decade after decade after decade spent fighting on the battlefield in the name of the Elysian Celestial Empire - and was made aware of several facts.

The first, that Meissa was an acquaintance of Antoni's, was unexpected, but not terribly so - and handily explained why the former had not bowed or properly addressed the latter. Had I bothered reading the dossier Raphael prepared for me, I would have most likely known of their relationship - and its presence, though highly unusual, is...reassuring, to be honest. During our interactions over the past few months I have learned that Antoni is not one who issues trust lightly - which is sadly more than can be said of our Senatorial colleagues - thus this Caelisolan is most likely going to be an asset of extreme valu-

The second, that the Caelisolan and the Senator had fought, came, to put it mildly, as quite a shock to Barachiel - because such things simply were not done - and very nearly shattered the charismatic aura he was projecting. What? A Caelisolan female fighting a Patrician - and then casually discussing it afterward? That...That makes absolutely zero sense! Only the legendary Hikael could ever stand a chance against a Patrician!

The third, that Meissa and the heathen were romantically involved, was of little surprise at all, as it merely confirmed Barachiel's suspicions - and was in fact nearly missed entirely, so great was the Senator's surprise at the previous revelation.

The fourth, that the Caelisolan had been apparently been a combatant in the Pankration ring's middleweight leagues who after earning the title of "crowd pleaser" following a surprise victory had vanished and reappeared in the service of the enemy, explained why Barachiel had never heard of her (he had far greater things to do than watch cheaply-made media intended for consumption by the masses) and how the Caelisolan had acquired her martial prowess - but failed to answer a far more pressing question: Why did this highly-talented individual choose to serve the enemy instead of her own kind?

The fifth, that Meissa had won in her fight against Antoni, again nearly succeeded in allowing Barachiel's surprise to overwhelm his ironclad self-discipline - roughly a month prior, the two Senators had sparred against each other in the arts of Pankration and the Xiphos; to Barachiel's surprise, Antoni was almost his equal, coming far closer then any (even Selaphiel) had ever come before - however the knowledge of just what was at stake allowed him to maintain his charisma-laced composure and, without missing beat, reply "One more, Antoni - and I believe you'll find her rather familiar, to say the least."

He then turned to face the newcomer and, with his features and tone once more smooth, baritone, and almost silken, responded to the uniformed Elysian with a short bow - nothing much, but still an unusual courtesy for a Senator to extend to a mere Archangel - and a reply: "That would have been me, Icarus Asellio. Shall we step inside? Although my so-called 'Honorable Colleagues' in the Senate have done much to erode its value, you have word as a Senator of the Elysian Celestial Empire that all will be explained once away from prying ears and..." - he shifted his gaze back towards the heathen, amber eyes staring directly downwards into their hazel counterparts - "I promise that no harm will be visited upon any of you during or as a result of this meeting."

The voice, the expression, the body language - all suggested that Barachiel Valeria was the best friend a person could ever ask for, that he was someone who would have your back or lend a kind and empathetic ear no matter what the time or circumstances may be. His eyes, though...

While they were outwardly friendly and caring, somewhere within their weathered depths, behind the facade of niceness and charm of the Senator, behind the unwavering steel and strength of the soldier, behind even the faithful devoutness and purity of the Exarch...

Somewhere within their weathered depths was something dark - something horrifying...
 

Alex Hart

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#11
Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXXIII a.m. (11:35 a.m.)


Matsuvo was no fool. He noticed that Barachiel recognized his combat stance by the subtle movements of his eyes, and that he did not expect to see him here. And speaking of his eyes, Matsuvo couldn't help but feel uneasy at the sight of them. They were the eyes of someone who was hiding something. Someone who wanted to hurt... someone.

Mat didn't trust Barachiel as far as he could throw him. Which, admittedly was probably very far, but the point was that he didn't trust Barachiel.

Mat cautiously let down his combat stance. "I see you're no stranger to combat senator, but surely you ought to have known about me being here. After all, an official of your stature could not have gotten to where you are without reading all of the intelligence reports that you've surely gathered on every one of us."
 
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#12
Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXXIII a.m. (11:34 a.m.)


It was around this time that a youngish-looking Elysian slipped inside the quaint diner, the Patrician's red-orange locks fell loosely around her shoulders, obscuring much but the briefest glimpses of her aetheric purple eyes as she gazed at something in her palm. Her skin was a snowy white, as if she had made her way through a light mist of flour, gooselike wings held close behind her.

Kianal seemed engrossed in a datapad held loosely between the fingers of her right hand as she guided the door closed behind her absentmindedly. Her clothing was an alien sight, one not often seen these days. The 6'2" woman seemed to be dressed in a modified la'khas from the Celestial Navy, a robe made of a single sheet - as opposed to the three most senators wore - that slipped from her left shoulder to waist, then cascaded down to the floor.

A couple of heads turned, perhaps even a few eyes widened at the sight. The battle-dressed Kianal padded towards the counter, still tapping at her little pad. Where the angle and breeze allowed, one could just about make out beneath her robe the Elysian-standard mesh jumpsuit from years ago, clinging tightly to her frame.

Tucking a few stray strands of sunrise-toned hair behind an ear, it was revealed that while the majority of the dress was midnight black, as was the jumpsuit, the la'khas' hems and edges had been woven with intricate and striking purple, the same as her eyes. The apparent ex-officer wearing Senatorial colours glanced up from whatever she was doing and began to chat with the person at the counter, likely not bothering to register much of what was happening in the room.
 
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FrostJaeger

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#13
Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXXIII a.m. (11:36 a.m.)


Barachiel blinked in surprise. What? Why in God's name would he think that I had access to any sort of intelligence reports besides the ones that Raphael prepared? Elysia doesn't even have a proper intelligence service, besides the pathetic attempt that is the Military Polic-oh. Barachiel smiled - an actual smile, not the utterly fake (and, to all but the most careful of observers, utterly indistinguishable) smile he typically utilized in matters both private and public - in amusement as he realized just what the heathen's confusion was stemming from. He actually thinks this is an "unofficial" venture officially sponsored by the Senate. Unsurprising for a mere heathen, but nevertheless highly amusing - and dangerous if left unchecked. "This meeting, Matsuvo Shinomori, is not on behalf of the Elysian Senate," whispered Barachiel, knowing that the heathen would be able to easily discern what he was saying. "It is on the behalf of me. My subordinate was the one who contacted you specifically, not I."

A violet-hued flicker of motion near the restaurant's lavishly-decorated counter then registered in the Patrician's peripheral vision - Marvelous, the final attendant of this questionably-legal gathering has arrived - and was promptly sent a telepathic message. "It is a pleasure to see you again, Honorable Colleague Adrasteia. Honorable Colleague Castor and I are waiting for you in one of the private rooms at the back of this restaurant."
 

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#14
Gamelion VIII, MMMMXI (8/1/4011)
Empyrean, Elysia Novus
Akilina's Ocean Diner
XI:XXXIII a.m. (11:36 a.m.)


Kianal's rosy lips met the warming tip of her coffee mug as she gave it a tenative sip. The near-bubbling, steaming liquid exploded rich flavour to her senses. 'Mmmm...' Sometimes it was good to indulge a little, especially to relax during an important meeting. Or at least, she thought that was why she had been called here. For some reason it seemed to be rather hush-hush but she was more than used to that sort of dynamic from the Senate.

Taking another deep sip, the wafting scent played across her nose delightfully just as she tipped the ceramic, a message branching into her mind. 'Barachiel and Castor?' This was going to be an interesting few minutes for sure. "Of course, Honourable Colleague Valeria, the pleasure is all mine. I will meet you presently." The message was slightly apologetic, though she wasn't late Kianal would have made special effort to have come earlier if she'd known exactly who would be here.

Tucking the slim, glossy pad under her robe somewhere, the snowgoose winged woman slipped from the counter towards where the others were gathered with a modicum of haste in her step. In no time, the functionally-dressed Patrician was within talking distance. "Honourable Colleagues." She began pleasantly, before noting the others there she did not recognise and.. was that a Minkan?
 

club24

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Icarus returned the small bow to Barachiel dipping his head slightly lower than the other Elysian had done to acknowledge the difference in their roles and standing, he wondered why this senator had even bowed to him being clearly far more important than himself. Looking around at the others gathered he had noticed Mat quickly due to the obvious lack of wings, the combat stance he displayed while subtle was all too obvious to the Ex SAoY officer who'd spent the better part of his life training and serving. He would have taken on one of his own however the situation seemed to be stable if not a little tense.

His comment on the supposed intelligence gathered by Barachiel seemed odd considering he had clearly served with the Star Army having just used a basic CQC stance and the Star Army, as Icarus knew all to well were not fond of handing out information. "I am at liberty to trust your word senator however with no apparent reason for my being present I believe it would be a good idea to move forwards with this gathering, the entryway seems to be getting slightly crowded as it is." The tall Caelisolan spoke up from the back with a flat tone, formalities were all well and good and often crucial to official business but from his interpretations this meeting seemed slightly more "off the books".

Icarus may have been invited by this man Barachiel but he couldn't shake the notion of being an outsider in the current situation from his mind, it appeared most of the others already knew each other with the exception of the Minkan who appeared to be accompanying one of the others. It was possibly due to this that he had decided to speak up to try moving things forward, he knew no one and had as much credibility with each of them as a second hand starship peppered with plasma scorch marks. "I expect we will be having quite an interesting discussion, provided we make it past the pleasantries."