2017-06-19: A Panel Of Berries (Ending)

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This scene concludes 2017-06-19: A Panel Of Berries (Side A) and 2017-06-19: A Panel Of Berries (Side 1).

=================================<* Berry Cave *>=================================

The Berry Cave once held an underground grove, where the curative berries found throughout Filgaia grew. However, monsters moved inside of it, which made the cave dangerous. The tenders of the Berry Cave relocated to Surf Village, located nearby. Since then, the cave has become a nest of the monsters known as Wels. The locals advise against entering these cavernous depths, but nonetheless, the Berry Cave's namesake lures people in: those berries still grow on vines in the depths and sell for a pretty penny.

BGM: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C55flOnlXMg
<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

The horrible remains of the gigantic Reaper have been dealt with. This involved a great deal of firepower on the part of two dungeoneering groups, but eventually, it was rendered into a format that would not block the door, regardless of where it oozed on its vile fluids. Ida, at least, was apologetic about the whole thing.

Now, the two groups have convened on a small chamber deep in the cave, where the terminal rests. It appears to be built into the wall, and the letters "SEED CORPORATION" are stenciled on the wall above it--below this text, the words "Botanical Laboratory BN-1303". The terminal is inert, and there's a little damage that looks like it was caused by an electrical surge.

Ida stands in front of it, unfolding a screwdriver from her multitool. "I've never heard of any SEED Corporation," Ida murmurs. "But I suppose it makes sense. Seeds, botany."

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

Lunata doesn't look like she's been having a great time. She's wheezing, her favourite garden trowel's gone and stuck itself on the top of some royal rat authority's head somewhere, her ankles are wet, and she's having a no-good very-bad Lunie-disapproves kinda day! ... but they're at the end, so...

She coughs just a little bit as she -- peers at Ida and the rest, before saying, "M-Miss Ida?"

She wants to sit down right now...

"Seed Corporation...?? Just what is this thing?" Lunata doesn't look like she understands.

<Pose Tracker> Rose has posed.

Rose remains where she was earlier-- sitting near the panel, resting, and trying her very best to not pay attention to the fact Ragnell is there, somewhere, who knows where. Maybe right in her face. Maybe she's poking it right now.


It was just the wind.

Or an itch.

But almost assuredly not Ragnell.


Rose calms down, all frowny, pouty, and kinda panicked. "I've never heard of it either," she finally manages. "But, if I was going to take a wild guess, maybe they're the reason this cave is full of magical healing berries. Experiments or something like that?"

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

Shalune - a cute bundle of energy about Lunata's age and height, carrying a broom and enormous backpack and bundled up in a warm black hoodie with cat ears on the hood, out of which long pink hair pokes - looks like she's had better days, but is still chipper and full of cheer as her group manages to blast and heave the rest of the corpse out of the way; she helps Lunata inside, one arm around the other Lunie.

"Oooh..." she breathes afterwards at the sight of the terminal, her eyes flicking to and fro as she traces possible wiring points and junctions with the wall. "I wonder-- I mean, you wouldn't normally find vegetables in a cave, right? Maybe this was some kinda old lab or something like that?" Automatically, she gravitates forwards towards the panel, intensely curious.

<Pose Tracker> Neriah Parringer has posed.

Sitting by the terminal, Neriah sighs wistfully and looks up towards the ceiling. She's daydreaming about Lunar.

And now, a sampler of Neriah's daydreams about Lunar:

. o O ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I9MZNEXrElw )

The sound of Lunata showing up startles. With a gasp, she slides down from her seat, but stops herself as she realizes that Lunata's at least moving alright. "Lunata," she calls, her cheeks colouring a touch. "Are you hurt...? And Shalune, you're here too?! Geez... okay. Uhm. I'm glad you're both okay! C'mon and rest. It's safe now."

Well, more or less safe. She bites her lower lip and looks down at the terminal, scratching at one cheek. "...I'm not sure," she admits. "Some kind of techno-box...?"

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Ragnell has posed.

Ragnell is, in fact, sitting also near the panel, next to Rose, holding a finger out approximately half an inch away from Rose's face.

"I'm not poookiiiing yoooooou," she sing-songs.

<Pose Tracker> Sephilia Lampbright has posed.

Sephiia does not look pleased. Chauncey is just completely covered in gore. Sephy herself is still soaking wet from falling in the water and limping from twisting her ankle when she did. And there's a thing she doesn't understand going on--electricity is still beyond her comprehension.

She DOES understand what's happening with Ragnell and Rose, though. "It's true, she's not poking you," Sephy says to Rose, since she's able to see the Seraph just fine. "She's just doing that thing where you hold your finger really close to someone though."

<Pose Tracker> Jacqueline Barber has posed.

Jacqueline was glad to see some friendly faces on the other side of the Reaper. She hadn't expected to see them here, but without them they would've likely had an exhausting trip back empty-handed.

(Actually they would've found some gross monster berries that were probably still usable, but that isn't canon.)

"This panel...I think it's the same one..." Jacqueline says, reaching into her bag for her notebook. She flips through the pages, until she eventually settles on the notes she took last time she came here.

"I think it'll need to be repaired before we can access anything proper, or at least that's the conclusion I came to last time...but I think, with any luck, we'll learn at least something soon enough." Jacqueline says, glancing toward Lunata. They had enough mechanically-inclined individuals here that she was sure at least one of them would have an idea on how to fix this thing.

She does, idly, glanced towards Ragnell with a small smirk. Was she always the type to tease like that? Poor Rose.

"Anyone have any idea what to do about this?" She asks, strolling up to the panel and inspecting it.

<Pose Tracker> Emma Hetfield has posed.

Emma emerges, wet and smoking, from the direction. "Oh good! It's Ida," Emma announces, sauntering forwards. "Ida, this is Shalala," does Emma know Shalune's real name?

Emma gives a brisk nod to everyone as she approaches the panel, wiggling in relief. "This is a place where electrical connections are made," she explains to Neriah as she gets up near Ida and leans in to squint. "Seed..."

Emma trails off in philosophical silence, then says, "I wonder if they were here to study the berries. Does anyone know off hand if they've been cultivated elsewhere?" Then back to Neriah, as she wedges open the panel. "The armor covering here prevents stray animals from urinating, nesting, or eating the material. The occasional check and clean-up effort and the connections should last much longer!"

Emma then looks inwards. "Should," she concludes, wearily. "Well, this is a mess..." A pause, and Emma reaches in to flip a switch, which makes SOMETHING stop shorting, and then she digs in her pocket for a roll of black shiny tape.

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

Shalala, if that's actually her name, waves brightly - and then tugs a pot off of a leather loop on the base of her backpack. "Oh, well--" she perks up brightly. "--if it's repairs you need, I can definitely help out! Teach, if you just sorta describe what you need in the way of specific parts to bridge the circuitry, I can probably just chuck some of the old scrap in and make it up for you," she adds as she sets the pot down on the floor to hunker next to it. "I've got some bits here, too--..."

She trails off, humming to herself as she digs through her bag for some pieces of metal scrap, tossing a few into the pot. ... she definitely wasn't at that sort of knowledge level a year ago, but seems entirely confident in herself even as she offers not the slightest explanation for what on earth it is the pot actually does.

<Pose Tracker> Rose has posed.

"Eh?!" SO SHE WAS RIGHT. Ragnell is right there! Sephilia just confirmed it! Rose is overcome by a sense of panic, and also anger, but mostly panic, and rather than think this through the entire way, she gives in to her base instincts.

While everyone else is busy doing SCIENCE, what Rose does is, she suddenly snaps forward like a crocodile and attempts to CHOMP Ragnell's outstretched fingers. And wouldn't you know it, there is just enough raw desire to harm her right that second that Rose's Resonance shines through and lets her be able to touch the Seraph, for all of one second.

Which escalates into further panic if Rose actually manages to bite something. Now she might have ghost in her mouth! How would she know?! Oh god what do what do what do.

Rose is a very mature person. How did she manage to organize this exactly?

<Pose Tracker> Neriah Parringer has posed.

"Quit bein' dorky to Rose, the dead," Neriah chides Ragnell, though it's with a playful smile and an equally playful invocation of the nickname she's bestowed upon the Seraph. "You can poke her later, when she least expects it."

Then Emma Hetfield emerges, and Neriah defers to the expert. She tugs the hem of her vest down, pursing her lips. "I'm not sure. I've never run into them cultivated elsewhere, anyway. I just assume most people pick them here," she says as she steps aside, making room for Emma. "Still, I... guess it's a good thing it's got safeguards against critters pooping in it...?"

<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

"Hello again, Miss," Ida says, as polite and civilized as she can manage while in the middle of a god damn monster cave. She manages to get the panel covering off with the cross-head screwdriver, and once that's out of the way, she lets Emma do her thing. "Berries are a valuable commodity," Ida says. "Perhaps they wished to breed them for pharmaceutical purposes? I've never heard of anyone managing to grow them on such a massive scale--that's why they're so terribly precious." And that Beastwoman at Aldehyde just had a big old pack full of them. Who knows where she got them?

"Now all we require is a power source, I believe?" Ida says. "It doesn't look as though there's one back here." She looks at Shalune as though she will somehow magically have one on hand.

Hey, Shalune claimed that she just kind of hung out in a junkyard full of miracle devices. It's a reasonable guess.

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

Lunata perks up at the other members of the party -- she remembers Neriah, of course, as she smiles warmly and says, "I didn't know you were here too, Miss Neriah... I'm not hurt, just... we've had a bit of a slip and a stumble and a fright. Also, it really stinks in here."

Ragnell, as well -- she's served her once, and it's with no particular difficulty that the waitress just waves at her to say, "Ah-- wait-- why are you poking her, Miss Ragnell-- wah!?" Rose chomps her way forward!

She's completely helpless when it comes to tech stuff, of course. The most complicated device she's ever utilised in her entire life is...! Well, a stove.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Ragnell has posed.

Ragnell cheerfully wiggles her fingers at Sephy (for being so helpful) and Jay (definitely always). "But I'm *not* poking her. That's the whole point!" Ragnell points out to Neriah and Lunata. But Emma, Shalune, and Ida all get to work on attempting to figure out the SEED box or whatever it is out, and she turns her attention their way for the moment. Is this Rose's chance?! Not that Rose would be able to tell that she has a chance, but that doesn't matter, because Ragnell's assessment of Rose's spitefulness was dead accurate. The moment Ragnell takes her eyes off her, Rose flails into a panic, which rapidly turns into murdermode, and goes CHOMP.

Out of sheer surprise, Ragnell YELPS, jerking back unsuccessfully as Rose's teefies dig into her finger as she snaps her head around to gawk at her. "Well, damn, you can do it if you try!!" she declares, even as she palms Rose's forehead and attempts to SHOVE her off herself.

This might quickly devolve into a wrestling match. With a ghost. THIS IS YOUR LIFE, ROSE.

<Pose Tracker> Jacqueline Barber has posed.

Jacqueline steps back from the panel to let Emma do her thing, a writing utensil at the ready to take notes on her process. She does also glance toward Shalune as she brings that Alchemy Pot of hers out.

This...might be a good opportunity to take some notes on it, too.

She is, for the moment, distracted by Ragnell palming at Rose's face and...just kind of sighs. This was a side of both of them she had yet to see, and...she wasn't sure what to make of it. For now, she just focuses on the SCIENCE at hand.

<Pose Tracker> Emma Hetfield has posed.

Emma pauses.

She looks at Shalune then and says, with a cosnpiratorial slyness, "You've learned. This is astonishing, darling. You're really getting me excited. Were you studying yourself or did you have a master? I don't know if I told you many stories about old Zepet."

"He's dead now," Emma says a few seconds later, after getting something in the right place. "As for collecting them... it could be. But there are no doubt not many places on Filgaia that could host such a plant..."

<Pose Tracker> Sephilia Lampbright has posed.

Sephilia shakes her head at the antics of Rose and Ragnell, while keeping an interested eye on what Ida, Shalune, and Emma are working on--though a certain amount of frustration boils up in her.

"I feel stupid," she admits. "I don't get any of this stuff and I hate that. I wanna understand what you guys are doing!"

As she speaks she pulls out a cloth and starts wiping Chauncey down--the cloth seems to get the worst of the dirt, gore, and muck off of the doll somehow.

"I just don't like not understanding stuff."

<Pose Tracker> Neriah Parringer has posed.

"Yeah, I am," Neriah says with a crooked smile as she heads for Lunata, moving to check the girl over. "The smell's not so bad over here... I take it you had to move a dead body too, huh?" She says it like it's the most normal thing in the world.

Her cheeks colour a little. "...And you can just call me Neriah," she offers Lunata in a quieter voice.

Reaching into her well-stuffed Excavator's pack, she comes up with a couple of folded brown sheets. They're rough, but clean. She holds them out and offers, "Anyone need to clean up? I've got these, if they'll help...."

<Pose Tracker> Rose has posed.

Mistakes have been made.

Rose is pushed back by Ragnell, and with that flare up of emotion behind her, cannot fight back. She falls to the ground (not a grand feat considering she was already sitting down, so it's more like she gets gently shoved towards the ground and tips over) and flails, unable to fight back against Ragnell's ghostly hand.

"Damnit, that's cheating! How do I do it again?! How do I do it again, I'm gonna hit you, I swear!" She says that, but her incoherent flailing and cracking tone indicates she probably couldn't do it. Still, getting ONE bite in is a pretty good track record so far.

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

Shalune lightly puffs up her cheeks, looking up at the scientist with a distinct pout. "Uuu-- of course I have! I didn't just go off on my own for nothing! Look--" she adds, tilting her head towards a distinct hole in the circuitry where several of the wires congregate.

"You're totally missing a power brick or something there, right? Something-- mm, you'd probably need something long-lasting that can provide a slow burn, I guess, so you don't have to come down here too often? It's, what, about three inches by six - looks like it's got a strip to pass the power..." she wonders, trailing off as she scratches at her cheek thoughtfully before she turns back to her pot.

"I guess it's to regulate the place, maybe? Gotta be some way to get that much water down here, after all, and the temperature's way cooler than it should be this far down..."

<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

Ida looks at the spot on the wall, thoughtfully. After a moment, she turns to Rose. "Miss Ragnell," she says, "Could you come here a moment? We need your services." She then looks at Shalune, looking at the pot. "I don't suppose you have anything that fits the requirements? I believe we have a short-term solution, but a long-term one would be welcome. I would hate to have to come down here every time someone decided to shock it to life."

<Pose Tracker> Jacqueline Barber has posed.

"Hm...the problem is, what do we do about it?" Jacqueline comments with a frown. They needed to somehow find a way to power this device...she's sure to take down the dimensions that Shalune mentions. As she thinks, she glances toward Sephilia.

"It's alright, don't feel too bad about it. It takes a lot of education to get to where they are. I'll admit, even I don't always understand all of it." She says with a smile, hoping to reassure her somewhat.

Unfortunately, Jacqueline's area of expertise was not technology, though she had a workable knowledge of it. She felt like there wasn't much she could do to help here, either...which was why she was sympathizing with Sephilia somewhat.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Ragnell has posed.

"What, really? That's all it takes? Rose, you suck!" Ragnell complains of Rose when that one shove tips her over, but evidently not that seriously, since she laughs and winks at her audience of Sephy and Jay while she does it. "You really wanna beat me up, you're gonna have to try WAAAAY harder than--huh?"

She pauses at the sound of her name, looking over her shoulder at Ida. A glance down at the device. Electronics may not be a big thing on Lunar, but Ragnell went local with remarkable speed on Filgaia, and one of her personal items *is* an electronic fan that she powers with her own magic. She cocks a pair of finger-guns at Rose and says, "To be continued," then gets up to her feet and peers over Ida's shoulder, then over at Emma and Shalune. "Whatcha need?"

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

Lunata gratefully takes one of Neriah's brown paper towels and dabs it over her face and hair, with a genteel sigh as she steps on over to where she wouldn't be bothering the SCIENCEtists. (The capitalisation is important). Unlike Sephy, she doesn't seem to be really frustrated at not understanding... though she still watches Ragnell and Rose and says, "Y-you shouldn't give up, Miss... Rose? Hi, my name's Lunata, from the Starfall Saloon..."

<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

"This device needs power," Ida says, to thin air. "If you could touch the panel and just gently feed it electricity, we can reactivate it now that it's been properly repaired." And assuming that proceeds...

The screen flickers. It flashes. It lights up with a bright blue light, and a slightly different message than the one Rose and the others might have seen.

You have one print job in the queue.


There's a little blinking cursor. Part of the screen... flickers, strangely, taking on the appearance of a typewriter. Except the keys are there on the glass, and not actual keys that you press, which makes no sense.

"Print job?" Ida says. Something slides aside, revealing a long horizontal slit. How odd!

<Pose Tracker> Emma Hetfield has posed.

Emma looks around for a few moments before finally settling on looking approximately at Ragnell. Maybe. She adjusts her glasses with a wrinkle of her nose and states, "We need high voltage. 220 if you can manage it, but I think it'll step up and down if you're a little out of phase."

<Pose Tracker> Neriah Parringer has posed.

Neriah has the technical aptitude of a four-year-old. She stays out of the technicians' way.

She passes the towel to Lunata, though. The towel's a bit rough, but it gets the job done. Neriah smiles crookedly at the girl before shifting to lean against a wall, crooking a knee and planting a heel against the rock behind her. "I'm sure you'll see her eventually, Rose," she assures even as Ragnell joins the machine nuts.

Then she scratches at her nose. "I wonder what a print job is," she murmurs. "It sounds like something you'd hire a newspaper reporter for."

<Pose Tracker> Emma Hetfield has posed.

Emma looks around for a few moments before finally settling on looking approximately at Ragnell. Maybe. She adjusts her glasses with a wrinkle of her nose and states, "We need high voltage. 220 if you can manage it, but I think it'll step up and down if you're a little out of phase."

And soon enough...

"Oh! It's like the Emulator!" Emma says, seeing these funny 'letters'. She extends one hand to commence to hunt'n'peck out '?', 'help,' and 'print job'.

"I have no idea," she says. "It's exciting!"

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

Lunata helpfully adds, "Oh, like -- you know, when you carve out a lithograph, and then smear ink on it to make prints? Or like tie-dye shirts!"

<Pose Tracker> Rose has posed.

Saved from the ghost by Ida.

Rose lets out a sigh of relief, knowing for the time being that Ragnell is over there by the panel doing a... thing. Something scientific, no doubt. And so Rose is left to be cheered up by... the little girl from the Hellion invasion?

That's ironic.

"Oh, hi there Lunata! How've you been since Port Timney? I guess we haven't been very lucky and run into each other since, huh?" Say what you want about Rose but, as ever, she bounces quickly.

Her eyes wander towards Emma and Ida, as they manage to make the panel sing (metaphorically). "You two really are geniuses at this stuff. Thanks for accepting the job on such a short notice, miss Hetfield!" Judging by her enthusiasm, she suspects at this point the job itself is its own reward, but Rose still wanted to get that out.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Ragnell has posed.

"220 volts? That's it? No problem," Ragnell says, laughing a little. She reaches out her hands to the device, shuts her eyes, and concentrates on feeling out the pathways of lightning slumbering within the machine, then gently coaxing her natural element through them...

Once she has the hang of it enough to keep it going without having to concentrate so continuously, she opens one eye to peer at the screen. Print job. Huh. The hell's that mean? Lunata suggests an explanation, but it's still not... *quite* illuminating.

<Pose Tracker> Neriah Parringer has posed.

Neriah opens her mouth. Then she closes it again, frowning faintly.

"I've... I've never tried to tie-dye a shirt," she admits to Lunata, deflating slightly and cupping her cheeks to hide her blush.

<Pose Tracker> Sephilia Lampbright has posed.

Sephy is completely lost but paying attention, honest.

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

Focusing on her pot and the work within it, it's possible that the teenage girl hunkered over it as if it were a campfire can't actually see the Seraph - but in her focus, does at least manage to pick up the sound of the Seraph's voice over her shoulder. "Mm, but that's only gonna be temporary, right? You can't keep supplying the panel forever, not without somethin' to generate and capacitate the charge."

She's almost mumbling to herself now, taking some baggies out of her bag and unpacking them to retrieve and place several bits of scrap inside the rounded pot, followed by a small bar of metal that carries the reddish tint of copper. As she starts to concentrate, glowing neon lines of white spider along the sides of the vessel, and when she starts to stir it with her broom, it begins to actively shake - but no more than that, as if something was missing.

"Um. ... hmm--" but the familiar crackle and tang of electricity in the air pulls her head up with a gleeful smile. "Oh, oh! Can you, uh--" a brief moment of floundering, then on impulse: "Blast the pot?"

<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

Emma enters her command. The blinking cursor takes on the shape of a small circle, which slowly fades from black to white. It takes a few seconds, but a garbled little image appears in the corner of the screen. It looks like it might be an apple, cross-sectioned so its seeds are exposed, except with big, friendly eyes and a gormless smile.

It looks li$3 mr9erying to 49int a quarterly 49rport! Just type 'PRINT' and I'll do the rest!"

Ida is staring at the cartoonish apple character, trying to figure out what the hell it is supposed to be.

<Pose Tracker> Jacqueline Barber has posed.

Oh, now this was exciting. Something entirely new! Jacqueline's attention is once again focused on the screen, rapidly taking notes about everything she sees there. Maybe it was a bit unnecessary, but she was sure that someday this might help her if she runs across another machine like this somewhere out in the wild. What were the chances that there was only one of these out there?

Pretty good, actually, but Jacqueline was a bit of an optimist.

...But...what was that apple thing? Was it important? Well...she didn't know, but...into the notes it goes.

"I see...it's still a little garbled, but easy enough to understand now. I wonder what did it...?" She commments.

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

"Y-yeah..." Lunata nods slowly at Rose, before blushing to say, "Um, I've been busy... I got lucky and didn't get badly hurt during the attack on Adlehyde, and I was actually here because we needed more berries back at the Saloon for the injured. I've also been..." A pause. "Ah, I've been training my senses, I guess."

She looks at Neriah to smile and say, "We should do it sometime! It's a lot of fun, and not actually that hard to do!"

She stares towards the screen when it comes alive, gasping. "It's-- cute?" She pauses, squinting just a little bit harder. "Is it a kind of... guardian spirit? Of the print... reports? Is it a device that controls the seasons?"

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Ragnell has posed.

"You're right about that," Ragnell tells Shalune. "I can keep this up for a while, it's real nice an' easygoin', but I'm not gonna do it forever." She doesn't say if she *could* or not, just that she *won't*. (She probably couldn't anyway. Eventually she'd get tired.) She pauses to peer at that weird apple thing in the corner and its message, then focuses back on Shalune.

"Blast the pot?" she echoes. "Like... hit that pot you're holdin' with a lightning bolt? Are you sure about that?" Given how quick Ragnell usually is to do any manner of things, and how dubious she sounds over the request... it'll probably be fine! Right, Shalune?

<Pose Tracker> Emma Hetfield has posed.

"The Emulator was in a box when I found it," Emma says. "Corroded on the outside, but inside it was dry... And it hadn't been left activated. How very interesting..."

Her manicured nail starts tapping out 'PRINT'. "It might just be a comic strip character. Perhaps it can read our thoughts..."

After punching it in, she beams at Rose and Ragnell and everyone. "Thank you for such kind words! I worked very hard, so you can too. Though I'm also a natural talent for this sort of thing, which will be harder to accomplish. I'm still unlucky in love, though, so don't feel that there's nothing you've got going for you."

She concludes, "Don't blast anything, please~."

<Pose Tracker> Neriah Parringer has posed.

Neriah's hands fall away from her cheeks. The blush she wears is light, but it seems more pronounced given how incredibly pale her complexion is. "...You think it'd be fun?" she asks Lunata, dipping her chin, before she smiles with growing warmth. "Okay... sure. Let's tie-dye a shirt together. I'd like that....!"

(Maybe she wasn't scared of me after all,) a little voice in her thoughts chirps with some relief.

Her lips come together in a little moue as her attention is dragged to the terminal. The sight of the apple leaves her blinking, but smiling a slightly charmed smile. "...At least it's a cute talking apple thing, at least...?"

<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

"Dear goodness," Ida says, in response to Emma's hypothesis. She hopes not.

And then, a humming sound emanates from the bottom of the machine, near the slot. It picks up speed, then turns into a sort of whirring accompaniment for a rhythmic, high-pitched squeaking noise. Paper starts unspooling from the slot, yellowed with age, but still clearly readable.


Damn it, it smudged. Fortunately, the rest of the report seems to be coming out all right, complete with perforations for easy folding. After ten pages, it shows no signs of slowing down. Twenty pages pass, and it's still going. Page after page after page of graphs, data points, raw data, words that are probably meaningless to the layperson. There's even annotations and footnotes.

After a hundred-odd pages, there's a snip from inside the machine, and the document reaches an end. The slot slides closed, leaving Ida with the folded document.

"This is a substantial find," she says, trying to contain a growing sense of excitement. "But I would rather analyze it somewhere a bit more hospitable, hm?"

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

"I've gotta charge up the battery somehow!" replies the girl towards the Seraph and Emma both, perhaps a little too brightly. To be fair, it's not like her broom has metal on it to conduct the shock to her - well, outside of the shaft. But the bristles are fine! Really! "Normally I'd use some old ones and get some sparks going, but it's not like I brought any myself. It'll be fine! I've sorta done this before! --uuu, fine," she adds with something of a pout as Emma vetoes the idea, pumping her fists as she looks back down at the pot and its present contents.

"--maybe it'll work if I add something to actually hold it, at least, then we can stick it in there and charge it up in place--..." but she's interrupted as the dot matrix printer starts churning out a reel of information, her eyebrows perking up again as she watches it print. "Oh-- ohh, it's to write stuff out? I wondered what that big spool was for, y'know, but I didn't think it'd be paper." A pause. "--wonder where it's storing that? It can't be in great condition after this long in a watery old cave, right?"

<Pose Tracker> Emma Hetfield has posed.

"Oh that's true," Emma says, as the NOW PRINTING prints. "But that's more of a steady flow thing. I did some fun stuff with an electrical discharge into electrolyte jars and nearly had sulfuric acid thrown in my face. Good times!"

<Pose Tracker> Sephilia Lampbright has posed.

"More book words," Sephilia mutters.

<Pose Tracker> Neriah Parringer has posed.

Any other comment Neriah might have vanishes as the device starts spitting out perfectly printed and perforated pages. She gasps and jumps back a bit, staring with wide eyes at the huge stack of documents. "How's it-- how's it possibly doing that," she murmurs, curling her fingers loosely into the fabric of her scarf. "I've never seen a device do something like that before...."

The science nerds seem so blase about it. Part of her wishes she could be that cool about it.

She tilts her head, sending a blink Sephilia's way. "I don't know, I understood what a discharge was, and what sulphur and acid are."

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

Lunata nods rather amiably with Neriah, her hands behind her back as she-- gasps when she watches the machine start to just... spit paper out! "W-wah! Oh no, did someone blast something?! The guardian spirit's ... printing... papers out!" Ohhhh, that's probably what print job meant.

She peers down towards it with Ida and says, "I don't really understand what it means at all... but... do you think we could use it to print out other things? Like -- fliers?" She's excited at that idea... "Or shirts?"

Smash cut to Lunata imagining her swank new custom T-shirt business, with the gormless apple as its logo.

Smash cut back to reality.

"... nah..."

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Ragnell has posed.

"Good Goddess," Ragnell says of the printed paper feeding out of the machine at what seems like incredible speed. "That's amazin'! What won't they come up with next?"

TEN PAGES: "Damn, how long d'you think this'll be?"

TWENTY PAGES: "Hey, it's got pictures an' everything! That's really somethin'!"

FIFTY PAGES: "Uhhh... How long is this thing, anyway?"


*snip*, the report finally goes, and Ragnell grumbles, "Good goddess, that took forever. Are we done with this thing now? Can I turn off the juice?" ...It's testament to how important Ragnell realizes this is that she *asks* first, rather than just immediately unplugging the power as soon as the print job is done. It's just as well that Emma shoots down Shalune's request for a lightning bolt. Though, Emma's words of gratitude get her a raised eyebrow. "Don't remember sayin' anything t'you before now. You're mixin' me up with someone else."

<Pose Tracker> Sephilia Lampbright has posed.

"I don't understand any of this thing. It'd be way easier if it were just magic but I know it's not and that makes my head hurt."

<Pose Tracker> Jacqueline Barber has posed.

"Wow. This is...amazing!" Jacqueline says, clearly impressed. "I wonder what it all means...?"

She's curious, but Ida has a point. This wasn't exactly the best environment for studying all of that. Shalune has a good point, too.

"I am curious too, admittedly...but I think it's best that we leave it alone for now. We might be able to learn more from it later...possibly." She says, shooting the girl a look.

And then Emma brings up an event from the past.

"Ah, yes...I remember that. But at least you figured out how to get it working in the end!" Jacqueline replies, then looks around at the others.

"Well, thanks for all the help, everyone. This was certainly exciting." She says brightly.

<Pose Tracker> Emma Hetfield has posed.

"I'm describing the flow of electrical energy, which is both what powers the lightning and what makes your hair stand up on a dry day," Emma answers Sephilia, before saying cheerfully towards Ragnell, "Let me just be sure it's turned off first-- but no, I was talking about someone else!"

Emma tries to punch in 'help shutdown' with her fingernail. "We have fun," she says, as the light shines off her glasses.

<Pose Tracker> Neriah Parringer has posed.

"It's okay," Neriah assures Sephilia with a lopsided smile. "This is easier than that for me... but magic makes my everything hurt. So."

She bites down to one knuckle as she admires the sheer size of the paper stack. It falls, though, as she flashes Jacqueline a smile. "Thank you for inviting me along. I know I'm a hassle sometimes but this was a great adventure."

<Pose Tracker> Rose has posed.

"Did that machine just create a book out of nothing?" Roses asks, because that sure seems to be what happened. The book isn't quite bound, but what else do you call a hundred pages?

"... am I the only one thinking maybe we should find a way to get this machine out of here so we can use it for... other stuff?" Printing fliers is an idea, thanks Lunata. But there's tons of possibilities here.

"Though I'm not sure how to even move this out... what if there's actually a building in here somewhere that this machine belongs to? Shouldn't we be looking for a door or some sort of access point or..." Yeah, Rose has no idea where to even start. Surely they could keep exploring the cave day in and day out, but it might not be worth the time.

<Pose Tracker> Emma Hetfield has posed.

Emma also finger-guns at Jay: "I found an artist for the new logo!"

<Pose Tracker> Sephilia Lampbright has posed.

"Why not just say it plain then?" Sephilia complains, hugging Chauncey, now clean. "I hate not understanding stuff."

<Pose Tracker> Jacqueline Barber has posed.

"Excellent. Work is coming along well on my end, too. I think the world will have a hard time overlooking us once everything comes together." Jacqueline replies to Emma with a grin.

Should...should people be worried? That was an hopefully-accidentally menacing statement she just made there.

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

And thus the list of accidental crimes Jacqueline Barber has committed grows by another...

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

"A-aww, Sephy, c'mon, don't worry," Shalune adds as she pumps her fists, all grumpiness gone in the face of a good find. "Tell you what, I'll teach you how some of this stuff works! No science words, I promise, 'cause I'm honestly not all that good at them myself," she says brightly, having picked up the nickname somewhere along the way. "But I do understand gears and cogs and stuff, and it all kinda goes from there. Okay?" she adds, risking a pleased pat on the head for the younger girl.

The sight of Lunata perking up at a thought makes her grin, tapping at her lips. "Well-- I mean, now that I've seen how it works, I could probably replicate something a bit like it? It looks like it uses a roller and some kinda inky ribbon, then you just sorta press-- guess I'm not sure how it really works yet, but I could always take some closer looks before we head out?" don't take it apart, shalune

<Pose Tracker> Emma Hetfield has posed.

"Hmmm, a roller and some kind of a cloth soaked in ink? But you'd have to prepare the roller," Emma muses. "How could you prepare type that quickly?"

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Ragnell has posed.

"Oh?" Ragnell says to Emma. "Well, never mind then. Lemme know when you're good."

<Pose Tracker> Neriah Parringer has posed.

Neriah opens her mouth to say something.

She closes it again and just scratches at the back of her neck, looking off to one side with a faint smile and a distant look in her eyes.

<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

That God damned apple mascot reappears, slightly more garbled this time.

It loo9894 li49 s944hutdown! Just type QUIT! See you later!

"Once Emma gives the go-ahead," Ida says to the thin air where Ragnell is presumably still standing. "Thank you for your patience, Seraph, I was honestly not expecting it to be... this." She looks down at the paper, and back at Lunata. "Perhaps it has a big butcher-sheet of paper inside it, and some sort of motor to unspool it, and more mechanisms to keep it from getting snagged or jammed. I don't know how you could get it to print an entire document this quickly. You'd need an astoundingly long set of plates." Emma seems to have the same idea. Ida shrugs.

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

Lunata looks somewhat daunted as she places her hands to her chest and says, "M-Mister Apple is telling us to quit... that feels a bit menacing. Is it a warning from the guardian spirit that we shouldn't abuse this...?"

oh lunata you're the best science muggle ever

<Pose Tracker> Sephilia Lampbright has posed.

Sephilia nods shyly at Shalune. "I can show you stuff about...uh, I don't know. Explorin' stuff, I guess? That's all I'm good at." She frowns, looking at the paper. "It doesn't look like it's actually letters, though, Ida, just a buncha dots. Maybe it like...just has a dot and moves that back and forth and kinda dots in the right spots to draw the letters with dots? Would that work?"

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

"Umm, I guess that's the question..." Shalune murmurs as she sneaks up to the panel, trying to squint through the lot. "This is kinda advanced... normally I can just take a peek at something and get the hang of it, but-- hmm..." she's extracted a slim screwdriver from somewhere, looking dangerously close to just detaching bits of it right there and then. "Oh, I guess there's that little arm-thingo! It's like-- it's like a little guy with a pen, maybe, just automatic-- right," she adds, pointing the screwdriver in the direction of the girl as they both answer. "See, you got it!"

<Pose Tracker> Emma Hetfield has posed.

"Oh, that's easy," Emma says, typing in QUIT.

<Pose Tracker> Neriah Parringer has posed.

"Maybe there's a tame scribe demon bound inside the box," Neriah suggests as she looks back, sliding her gloves off and pushing her hands through her hair. Her hands and forearm are pretty unremarkable. "Maybe Mr. Apple is the binding spirit, and when you press his letters, he compels the scribe demon to pen the document for him. Maybe it's been dormant for thousands of years in there."

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Ragnell has posed.

Ragnell opens her mouth to tell Lunata that she didn't sense any spirits inside the box and she's pretty sure they're good. She shuts her mouth, then opens it to say, "You know, you could be right, Luna. If you're not careful... you might get *cursed*."

To Ida, apparently already cooled off from her grumbling from five seconds ago, she shrugs and says, "Eh, it's all good. None of us were expectin' this, I'm sure."

Oh, is it off? Hm. It *is* off. That's interesting. Even without seeing Emma enter the word, she can tell when the device powers down. That's *really* interesting. Maybe Ragnell should learn her a few more things about electronics... For now, though, she eases off the power, letting her lightning disperse harmlessly into the ground.

Then she turns to Shalune and smiles brightly. "Hey, so I can blast your pot now," she tells her. S-so the issue wasn't the blasting itself?!

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

Finally coming down from her SCIENCE high, Shalune turns and-- "E-eh?!" she blurts, eyes solid blank circles of white as she promptly hides behind Lunata. "W-who said that?!"

<Pose Tracker> Neriah Parringer has posed.

Neriah gives Ragnell a dry look. "C'mon, the dead, don't go blasting Shalunie. She seems cool."

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Ragnell has posed.

Ragnell pauses at Shalune. Then she grins wiiiiide. "The guardian spirit o' the box. You've incurred my wrath! WoooOOOOooooOOOOOO, prepare to be SMOOOOooooOOOOOTE~!"

To Neriah, she sends a similarly toothy grin and a wink. "Told you I'd have to try harder," she says sotto voce.