2018-09-16: A Babe In ARMs

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  • Log: A Babe In ARMs
  • Cast: Josephine Lovelace, Lunata Croze, Shalune Amira
  • Where: Adelyn Ranchlands
  • Date: September 16th 2018
  • Summary: Josie provides a little shooting practice for Lunata and gives feedback. So does Shalune, who's also present. In the end they work out a manner of shooting that suits Lunata best.

<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    "Now hold it there. Just like that, kiddo," Josie says, reaching out with her left hand to lift the barrel of the rifle a degree. She tilts her head, squinting at the far-off target, then readjusts the lift a little more.

    "Looks good. Let's see what your form's like, okay~?" She takes a few steps back, pacing well behind where Lunata stands. "All clear?"
    Josie might not be the ARMs safety rolemodel or anything, but perhaps it's best to make sure no one gets accidently shot right away.
    "Now~! What I want you to do is keep your eyes open and keep your arms steady. Don't squeeze 'em shut and don't jerk the rifle. It's gonna have a kick so get ready--"

    It takes her back, in a way.

    "Alright! Let 'er rip!"

    And besides, she just wants to get a look at how her latest piece of work handles itself.
    Even if she has to fight to keep a straight face every time she takes a look at the rifle's engraving.

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

    Lunata's been taking the attack on Adlehyde deeply seriously, it seems; in the last couple of days, the waitress has been spending most of her time in the Yggdrasil, tuning up the Rephaim and... gearing up herself in part.

    When Josie contacted her and said that she had something ready, Lunata's showing up -- in full combat gear, it seems; her usual black dress and Yggdrasil jacket's been enhanced with the high-mobility cabling box behind her waist, and what looks like square ablative pads have been added to her dress alongside her fingerless gloves and combat boots.

    She hefts the shotgun up -- so unnamed right now, save for the ridiculous engraving that reads 'Zeldukes is in Heaven now'.

    She's got the shotgun held with the support on her left, squinting for a moment--


    There's a thunderous roar of slug as the shotgun cracks open and Lunata recoils significantly from the shot. "Whoa!"

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

    Shalune is sat off to one side, perched atop the Little Dipper as it sits motionless in the air, hovering in much the same way that a brick doesn't. Next to her, on the wide bed of her vehicle, the odd ARM she uses to shape metal quietly purrs away, the interior lined with light as she works on rebuilding some of her stocks of spare parts and common fixtures.

    The mechanic doesn't appear to need to pay attention to it all that much. The only real indication she's even working comes every few minutes, when she turns to extract the latest bracket or half-dozen screws and tuck them away into a pocket of her coat. A different pocket has what appears to be a paper bag full of assorted scrap, and there's a rattle as she tosses a handful into the receptable - which starts to glow, and off the cycle goes again.

    She looks-- much the same as she ever does, really, at least when it comes to her appearance. Though she's working at the Starfall Saloon again, it's not like she's going to come out and test ARMs dressed like a waitress, and at the same time she can't really bring herself to gear up as solidly and obviously as Lunata has.

    Still, when she looks down at the notepad on her lap, 'prepare for Elru' is listed in the middle of the page, circled in red. Around it are a collection of drawings - sketches of New Petra and some of the components she needs to provide them, the twisted fake-musculature of an Elw golem arm and schematics of patches of her shotstaff, the slim weapon propped up against the scooter's side for the time being.

    She's been pensive in the way she quietly stares at the paper - but whips her head up at the crack of the shotgun's blast, eyes wide. "--wah! H-hey, watch out! You gotta brace a little until you're used to it! Gunsmokes have a lot more recoil than swords!" she blurts, which is a bit rich when her odd weapon... doesn't.

<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    On one hand, there's a certain practicality that Josie can appreciate to the combat gear. On the other hand...

    Does this sort of get-up really suit Lunata? Granted, the girl's changed -- grown up some, certainly -- since their first meeting nearly a year prior. And all children out on a journey will end up growing from it at some point.
    That much is certain.

    The shot cracks off.
    "Whoa now, watch for the kick--" Josie prompts, far too late for it to make much difference. "A shotgun's gonna kick you like a mule. If you're not careful, it'll drop you right on your ass. Still, at least it's kinder than some revolvers. Heh..." Her hand rests on her hip, and for a moment, she glances over at the notepad in Shalune's lap.
    Raises an eyebrow at the drawings there. Interesting...

    "Okay. Looks like you're a little off. See where it hit on the target?" She points, distantly. "Granted, a shotgun's never gonna be as accurate as some ARMs, but you'd be surprised what you can hit just about dead-on with it. Try it again and keep your sight a little more to the left."

    A pause lingers on outwards. "Still, it's not a bad shot for a first-timer. You sure you haven't done this before?"

    Outside of the Gear, that is.

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

    There's a little huff from Lunata as she says, "You're right on that front, Lunie..." as she comments about how gunsmoke ARMs have much more recoil from the sword. "That makes it feel like a real drawback. I wonder if there's a way to take advantage of it?"

    She looks at where she kind of hit the target off-centre, before having a little hum. "No, my father's an ARMs meister but... that's also kind of why I've gone off ARMs until now. He kind of annoys me." Ah, youth, the ever-qualifier.

    She tilts her head as she hefts the shotgun again, bracing it a little more firmly as she says, "Adjusting... then..."


    It gets... a bit closer, at least. "... can't I just walk up to them, then shoot?" she asks what she feels is an obvious question.

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

    Shalune's expression is kind of drawn as she watches Lunata recover; whatever other thoughts are rolling around in her mind, she does at least have her attention on the scene in front of her. "Mm... it kinda feels like it's pulling to the right a bit. Is it just me?" she wonders as the Little Dipper drifts around behind Lunata, and as the mechanic lifts a finger to draw a line up from Lunata to the target in the distance.

    She glances at Josie, the notepad in her lap temporarily forgotten. "I wonder if it's a matter of, uh--... well, the length of Lunie's arms," she admits sheepishly. "Trying to hold it both hands might be throwing off the aim a bit - shorter arm, you hold the gun more at your side to compensate? I was kind of wondering if she might do better with a sidearm, especially if she's gonna be holding onto her sword at the same time.

    She watches the second shot more closely this time, tilting her head to one side as she quietly evaluates it. "Mm... I mean, um. If you know to expect the recoil, you can make use of it, but it tends to be pretty fiddly. One time I tried to fire an ARM and near broke my dad's nose, though, if that helps!" she adds, doing her best to try to keep a positive spin on things.

    Her face goes flat shortly afterwards, though, as Lunata asks her final question. "... see?" she glances at Josie again. "This is why I was sayin' a shotgun."

<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    "Your dad, huh. What's his name?"

    An interesting question to ask, out of the blue. "Heh." That's how it is with father figures, huh?

    "No, it's not just you. Hmm..." Is it off? That would be an annoyance if it were off.
    Or maybe it's just Lunata's arm length that's the issue. "I suppose I could adjust the barrel," Josie offers, when Shalune points out the problem with Lunata's small size with regards to the ARM's length, shrugging as if this were effective punctuation. "But at a certain point... Guess it depends on if you want more power or more range, right? Both are good. What are you planning to do with this one? Compensate for the sword, compliment the sword, or replace the sword? ...Mind, I don't know nothing about fighting with a sword..."

    Just knives, and where to stick them for maximal effect.

    Using the recoil as a weapon?
    "Maybe if it were a pile bunker," Josie says. "But I wouldn't mess around with those unless you really want to do some weight-training on top of it all." They as a rule tend to be classified as heavy-ARMs for a reason. "Besides, I've never used one, so I couldn't even start on giving you pointers."

    There's a pause at Lunata's last question. "Sure can. It'll be even better at that if I take the barrel down. Still, aiming practice is good for you. Get the basics down, and then you can work at shooting down doors, eh?" She flashes a quick grin. "Besides. Once we start on moving targets you'll want this."

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

    "Uh... Atheron Croze," Lunata remarks. He's one of Adlehyde's ARMs meisters, and a relatively known Drifter at least some years back -- though his fame kind of pales in comparison to Lunata's mom, Meredin Croze, who's more or less renowned in all Ignas for her work in archaeology and Drifter studies.

    She huffs just a little to Shalune and says, "I'm-- not short! You're as short as I am!" with that kind of familiarity, before remarking to Josie:

    "... kind of a complicated story. Try growing up and just starting to think of wondering if you're into boys or not when your dad's bringing over really cute guys that make you second-guess yoruself," Lunata kind of just lays the issue utterly bare, before heaving the ARM again.

    "What'm I doing, huh..."

    She puts more shells into the shotgun and starts to kind of just -- heave it around on one arm, get used to the weight.

    "... I guess what I really wanted is some kind of freedom from the stuff Ge Ramtos' trapped me in," Lunata points out. "... for one day if I ever get the chance to break free of it."

    There's a sigh, before she grins and says, "Hey, I have an idea. Give me some moving targets."

    Uh oh.

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

    "Oh, I tried to make a pile bunker once! It worked pretty good, if I say so myself," Shalune lights up in earnest pride, as if she weren't talking about a pinpoint destructive weapon. "At least, I thought it did, but the problem was actually lugging it around. It was super heavy, and wasn't really any good for gettin' up close enough to use it. In the end I just used it to punch bits of steel apart when I needed to separate them."

    The mechanic pauses, and then continues on in her well-meant natter. "I tried to stick a mini version on some reinforced gloves, but it mostly just felt like I was gonna dislocate my wrist if I tried to really hit anything with it. Still, it's pretty cool... I should give Big Shal one," she impulsively decides, glancing back down at her pad to scribble a couple of reminders to herself.

    When she looks up, it's with her cheeks puffed out at Lunata. "I know that! I'm not saying I'm taller, I'm just sayin' you can get that kinda effect! There's a reason I use a staff I can shoot from the hip if I need to!" she adds, nearly hopping off the Little Dipper to give a demonstration... but pausing as Lunata continues, and falling quiet again as she looks to one side and works at her lip.

    At least until the call for 'moving targets' goes up, at which point Shalune abruptly and urgently hugs onto her backpack. And then casts a fearful glance at her scooter, and slumps to one side to try to hug the full size of that, too.

<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    "Atheron? ...Huh." Josie makes a 'tch' sound, only to grin a lopsided almost sardonic smile. "Well, guess I'm the idiot now, huh?"
    Of course she knows of Atheron, even though they've never crossed paths. "And your mom's Meredin. Talk about missed opportunities," she mock-laments, shrugging her shoulders. "Then again, I never did collaborate with either of 'em on anything. Maybe when all this Mother business calms down..." Right now, even she's having trouble finding the time to really focus on her own work, given that there might not be a world to do it in before long otherwise.

    Mother's eventually going to properly wake up, and then they'll all have a problem on their hands.

    And then Lunata... explains her family life. A little bit. "...ooh. Awkward," is Josie's comment on the matter, making a face. "At least my father's love of his life was magical research." It's chained to a rather bitter laugh, before the archaeologist tilts her gaze up towards the sky.

    "So a replacement. Someday."

    Josie pauses, as if considering what Lunata has just said. "You sure you don't want me to take that cube apart?"
    It's probably a bad idea.

    "You still have those pile bunkers around? I wouldn't mind giving one a look. I've only ever heard of them before, see, and it'd be a change of pace. If you've got one you wouldn't mind letting me disassemble, either. ...Don't suppose we could do a trade or two? I've got another piece hanging around that I wouldn't mind you taking a look at, while I've got you hanging around, kiddo."
    Shalune's got a natural mind of this sort of thing, and even if she might still be a kid, well. No sense in letting age-related pride get in the way of anything.

    "...Moving targets, huh? Sure. We can go monster-hunting later. But for right now, let's see if this thing's working right!"

    And she gives the odd squat machine at her feet a light kick before, gesturing to Lunata, shouts: "Get ready!"

    She jams her boot into the button.

    *phut* says the machine as it spits a small clay disc high into the air.

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

    "... well. The last time my mother had a breakthrough it ended up with Rujm el-Hiri and... you kinda know how that went," Lunata lets out a heaved little sigh. Well, okay, that's terribly unfair and her mother is still regretting it, but she can't help but feel like it all started when her mother (not Mother) poked her head into one too many ruins she shouldn't...

    "Magical research. Better than the dancer called Timothy from two blocks down," Lunata actually manages to go all the way to 'snarky'.

    Lunata listens to Shalune talk about making a pile bunker... she... doesn't remember that. Was that in Elru? She wants to see it one day. "That sounds like it could just wreck your wrist, but..."

    A pause, as she complains, "No! Big Shal is a friend to everyone -- a pile bunker ruins that image!"

    She hums and stoops down into a stance that's more familiar with swordfighting even though... her sword isn't around.


    Lunata's actually just launched herself into the air and manages to just about keep tandem as she leads the shotgun's barrel towards the clay disc. She grazes it enough to fracture, but more importantly braces herself so that she's more or less propelled higher into the air--

    --where she flips and lands on the other side with that little boost from the recoil.

    "... huh. Yeah... that can work?"

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

    "... Mrs. Croze and Mr. Croze are kind of, um-- they're the definition of special cases," Shalune mutters to herself, a lot of the fire having gone out of her all of a sudden. "They're both really proud of Lunie in their own way, y'know, just kinda--... I guess the best way I can put it is that life keeps happenin' to everyone around them, all the time," she sags, not really finding any more diplomatic way than that to put it. "Lunie, too. I guess I just about managed to escape, occasional scrapes an' bruises aside."

    She sighs, and then shakes her head, trying to forcibly dislodge the thoughts and swing back towards the here and now. At least she has something to focus on, scratching at her hair as she grins faintly. "Ah-- yeah, I do somewhere, hang on. The big one I left way back in Elru, because it really wasn't worth tryin' to carry back, but--" she lifts up from where she's still protectively hugging her backpack to start rummaging through it instead.

    Evidently the handheld version is a much more recent project, though she still has to turf her way down to the base of her backpack before she yanks out a thick leather gauntlet. A welder's glove, except reinforced with bands of metal and with a pipe mounted on top; she jiggles it, and a tentpeg falls out of the latter. Shalune, using rusted metal is probably against the rules, even in a prototype... "Yeah, that's pretty much what it did just from firing it. Good job I never tried to actually use it - bet it would've hurt like hell," she grins faintly at Lunata, and faintly to herself, before she looks back at Josie and offers it over.

    "If you can think of a way to dampen the shock, it'd probably even be usable. Kinda? Needs a lot of compressed air, though, or a spring mechanism. And-- yeah, I'd be happy to. Could kinda use the practice, after so long on Lunar."

    If she's surprised when Lunata suddenly launches into the air, she very definitely doesn't show it beyond sounding out an impressed 'ooooh' at the waitress' stunt. "... see, Lunie's always fighting all 'zap, fwoosh, babam' - so I figured that'd work better."

<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    Meridin's breakthrough. Yes, Josie heard about what had happened, even if she hadn't been present for it. All the more reason not to have kids, she thinks.
    And the other thing she thinks, as she glances away from Lunata is, 'hopefully she at least gets to write a paper on it'. But she knows better than to vocalize that one.

    Instead, she only speaks up again when Lunata speaks more on her family life. To wit: Josie makes a face. "No kidding," she says at Shalune's comment. She may be into her thirties but some things don't bear thinking on. "Well, kiddo, now you've done it. There's a mental image I never needed," Josie comments as she rubs at the back of her neck, perhaps imagining her own father with...
    Well, canoodling with anyone else in Marze, let's be honest."

    But the last project of Shalune's -- the smaller-sized pile bunker -- is one that she happens to have on hand. "Oh yeah? Let me take a look at that," she says, collecting the device to turn it over in her hands. "Hmm... maybe if there's anything left of Rephaim's arm," she hazards. "Testing it's also going to be a pain, along with the compression system if it's gotta be small like this... Might be good for academic work, so to speak." By which she means, 'ARMs development practice' and not so much 'archaeological work', though perhaps there's a way to combine the two.
    In a fashion that would immediately engender a surge of blind unknowable rage in most of the practicing archaeologists across Filgaia, as if a million ancient ruins cried out in despair and were suddenly silenced.
    "I think you'll liked it," she adds cryptically, referring to the 'other' thing she'd like some advisement into.
    (It's also something's arm, as it happens).

    The little disc-hurling machine (very basic, fortunately it didn't blow up or shoot all its discs at once, though good heavens either would have been an interesting spectacle in its own right) spits out a little clay disc.

    They're in fact called 'clay pigeons' despite not being at all pigeon-shaped. Fun fact!

    Lunata swoops after it like a bird of prey herself.

    "...Damn," is Josie's ultimate assessment, shading her eyes against the light as she confirms Lunata's landing. "Yep, you called it, kiddo," she off-hands to Shalune. Her gaze returns to Lunata. "Okay! Maybe you could give me pointers, if that's how you're gonna do it. Though I don't often use a shotgun..."
    Reaper's Hand's alternate mode aside.

    "...So, ready for another? Keep your eye on the prize and take it out!"

    She boots the machine again; it obligingly spits out another disc.
    "Maybe I should try and mix up the angle for the next shot..."

    She has the feeling this aspect of practice might be a little too easy for Lunata...

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

    In the end, maybe that's what Lunata's got to adjust -- downplaying her weaknesses, like standing still and having to aim and just... taking advantage that her gun is going to kick her in the face and just flip in the air, as she acrobatically bolts once more and flips--

    --angling the shotgun upwards this time as she just lets the recoil bounce her down to the ground where she rolls with her landing impact. Keep moving, keep moving, never stop for a moment.

    "Well... I can't really say this is great if you want to keep any sort of distance from your enemy," Lunata admits. "But that's kind of... what I've wound up doing. So that Jay or Shalune doesn't get hurt..."

    A pause, as she raises her eyebrows to go, "What happened to the scrap from that arm anyway? Weren't you salvaging some of it to make something? Anything come out of that?"

    She raises her eyebrows at Shalune and kind of bonks her gently on the head, saying, "You're no less a special case yourself, Lunie! Run off to Elru on your own and everything."

    She does look back to Josie though. "But... thanks for the training. Sorry I didn't really wind up being a model markswoman or anything," she remarks. "But it's given me a lot to think of..."

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

    Shalune keeps watching until Lunata is done; she's obviously kind of awed with the way the waitress zips and zooms about mid-air in a way she never could, not without the Little Dipper - and that just makes it more impressive to her. She stares for a moment once Lunata lands, and then--

    "--it's not like I did that cuz of Mrs. Croze or anything, though," Shalune pouts back at Lunata, though the pink-haired mechanic does at least lean forward to accept the bop on the head. "I mean-- Mrs. Croze and Aunt Hilda were always super nice to me, always have been. I didn't wanna make light of that, or anything, I just--" she pauses, and hesitates a little. "--I just needed to get away for a bit, when my own folks died. I mean, I know they're family as well, just not-- family family."

    The last part comes out hesitantly; it's not a topic she touches often, not least because she feels a little guilty about referring to them in that manner given everything Lunata's family has done for her. At least she has the presence of mind to puff out her cheeks. "And just think - if I hadn't done that, we wouldn't have Big Shal with us, so it all worked out in the end!"

    She's happier mentally skidding away from the topic of death, so she does so - blinking in open curosity at Josie's comment that she's something interesting waiting for Shalune. "--um-- just be careful you don't break your wrist? I mean, one time I got curious and stuffed that glove with a small pillow. It wasn't exactly pretty," she notes blithely, scratching at her cheek with a sheepish smile. "And, um-- well, I'm mostly just helping at the Saloon for the time bein', so just grab me whenever."

    "Aww--" she adds, lighting up all over again. "I think it's fine! So what if you're not so hot at shooting? It's just a matter of figuring out how you wanna fight, I think. And you look cool!" she insists openly, pumping her fists. So that's what it comes down to...

<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    "Don't worry, I've got no plans on testing this myself until I know it won't snap my wrist," Josie replies, turning the device in her hands over again to inspect the workings on it.

    At such apologies, Josie immediately waves a hand in the air. "Kiddo. Lunie. Listen to me, don't you apologize for bein' you, got it? If that's how you'd prefer to fight, that's how you'll fight. I'll make some tweaks to it to make it easier." Her lips quirk in a lopsided smile.

    "Still, a little target practice never hurt, y'know? But that's for you to decide~"