2019-05-22: Inazuma Five To Theoretical Infinity

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  • Log: 2019-05-22: Inazuma Five To Theoretical Infinity
  • Cast: Layna Manydays, Seraph Lanval, Prissa, Lydia Seren
  • Where: Luca - Blitzball Stadium
  • Date: May 22, 2019
  • Summary: Layna Manydays, pirate captain, tries to branch out into the amateur leagues of Blitzball with a few trusted friends under the banner of the Ruby Raiders. Their opponents... young children. The stakes rapidly escalate. Betrayal threatens to tear the team asunder, bad words are said, and shenanigans abound. With help from her best friend Prissa and loyal(?) companion(s?) Schrodinger, will Lydia be able to overcome the greatest challenge of her life? (...Not counting the cake thing.)

=============================================<* Luca - Blitzball Stadium *>=============================================

Where the Holy City of Bevelle is the spiritual centre of Spira, the blitzball stadium is its beating heart. The stadium is an enormous, open-air construction capable of holding several thousand spectators; as a result of its size, in addition to games, it has often been used by Maesters of Yevon to deliver particularly important speeches or sermons.

The stadium itself is an ancient blend of machina and sorcery, capable of holding a suspended sphere of water in place for hours at a time. Tournaments The stadium is one of the only machina formally sanctioned by the Grand Maester of Yevon, and countless Crusaders have sacrificed their lives over the centuries to turn Sin away from the city. The reason for this is simple - Blitzball lifts the heart of all who live in Spira, and even the smallest joys must be cherished.

BGM: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M-QpnYvldmo
DG: A party led by Layna Manydays is now entering Community Blitzball.
DG: Party formation is now over. An Entry Challenge will now be drawn and displayed to the party.
==========================<* Community Blitzball *>===========================
========================<* CHALLENGE - Trash Talk! *>=========================
|Type: Entry       |Dungeon Ability: Wits      |Challenge Rating: 1          | 
--------------------------< Challenge Information: >--------------------------
 Community Blitzball 101: This is a pick-up game of blitzball, played at Luca  
 in the off-hours, when the arena is not in use by the pros. The exploration   
 cards will assume that you or your opponents have the ball roughly half the   
 time each, but if you'd like to ignore that suggestion and go the other way   
 with the card's scenario, that's completely fine. The score is rarely         
 mentioned; keep as much or as little track of it as you find fun! (You are    
 broadly encouraged, for purposes of excitement, to assume that it's a close   
 game at all times.) Much as one doesn't necessarily detail walking down       
 every single corridor in a dungeon in a pose, this Dig isn't so much          
 designed to simulate every continuous moment of a blitzball game as it is     
 made to create Great Sports Moments In Blitzball for you to enjoy.            
                                                                               
 Today's Opponent: The Little Lightnings don't technically have a maximum age  
 but in practice none of them are more than ten years old. They play after     
 school, and they play to win -- underestimating them would be a big mistake   
 (and one that people make constantly). Their size is a real disadvantage,     
 though, one that they overcome by being clever, sometimes infuriatingly so.   
                                                                               
 LF: Jeri of Luca. Most likely to hog the ball. Also most likely to score,     
 so...                                                                         
 RF: Makki of Besaid. The new kid in town; homesick, but enjoying the          
 attention they get by being great at blitzball. Can perform the Sphere Shot.  
 MF: Elsa Guado. Somehow both the tallest and lightest of the team; extremely  
 quick to get the ball, but can lose it very easily. Kicks shins.              
 LD: Katy of Luca. A biter, but her tongue is as sharp as her teeth -- she     
 nasty.                                                                        
 RD: Rels Ronso. The youngest, and the biggest. Too good for this world.       
 GL: Pike of Luca. Team captain which is unusual for a goalie. Shouts a lot    
 of encouragement and instructions... and trash talk.                          
                                                                               
 BGM: Blitzoff! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0iJdLRpS_zA                    
                                                                               
 NOBODY is meaner than a little kid, and before the game has even started      
 these brats are going at it with obscene gestures, silly faces, and, worst    
 of all, absolutely dead-on impersonations of their opponents, right down to   
 both expression and swimming style. When the ball enters play they're going   
 to get it first simply because your team is too distracted to act quickly,    
 unless you can keep from rising to their bait.                                
=Dungeon Conditions: Stupify==================================================
<Pose Tracker> Layna Manydays has posed.

Blitzball - Spira's greatest (and...not only, exactly, but close enough) pastime! Layna was iffy on it at first, with her first introductions to it being with some rather unpleasant people, but after sitting in on the big tournament a little while back, she found herself interested!

So interested, in fact, that she decided to form a Blitzball team of her own - the RUBY RAIDERS, formed primarily out of members of her crew.

They even have their own uniform - it's as red as the name implies and bears their team's logo, a skull with a pair of armblades like the ones she used to use crossed behind it, with coins for eyes and the team's name in Spiran font.

There's a game today, but some members of the crew are off elsewhere, so Layna has had to request some outside assistance - people she figured would be a strong asset on the Blitzball field.

For today, the Ruby Raiders are up against the some of the most dangerous opponents Luca has to offer outside of the professional circuit. They're the quickest, most deviously clever blitzball players around, possessing a short temper and debatable sportsmanship skills.

They're also literally children, which explains a lot. They're good kids, really - they just get pretty into it. But hey, who can blame them?

Both teams stand on the opposite side of the field. They haven't jumped into the sphere yet, but already the other team is jeering and making ridiculous gestures.

"It's good to see that the youth of Spira is pretty spirited, aye?" Layna remarks with a chuckle, and then returns a gesture of her own - nothing too obscene, she's trying to be a responsible adult but what fun would it be if she didn't egg them on a little?

The tone to start off the game sounds and both teams dive in...and the ball is out!

Even so, the Little Lightnings haven't stopped with the trask talk...try to focus on the ball, not their actions!

DG: Layna Manydays has contributed a Wits Basic Action toward her party's challenge, Trash Talk!.
<Pose Tracker> Seraph Lanval has posed.

    Lanval ended up in the Blitzball Sphere because of... well, let's start from the beginning.
     *...deep breath*
     Today, he's decided to rest and chill out in his vessel, in the stands, alongside a bunch of other foodstuffs Fox Company bought and/or smuggled with them. They're going to watch the Ruby Raiders, because why wouldn't they? Lanval snoozes off well before the pick-up game begins.
     Then said bottle accidentally fell off as someone reached for some food while in the middle of a conversation, as all great antics happens, and he sleeps through his bottle rolling across the stands, down the steps...
     There's an upset Blitzball fan over some slight or another who just picks up the bottle and hurls it into the sphere. It's a hell of a throwing arm, and nobody catches sight of this. Lanval sleeps through all this as the bottle escapes into the sphere, because this is now a buddy sports comedy and not a tropical pre-post-current-cycling-apocalyptic existential horror flick.
     Inside his vessel, he stirs as he hears familiar voices and feels familiar presences... and then he can see them, in the water. All the pyreflies, arranged and compelled to specific patterns and movements by the surrounding mechanisms. When did he get in here?!
     He sees everyone dive in. Layna, especially, catches his eye (figuratively). What's going on, the water elemental panics, as he considers the environs. Sure, pyreflies seem to be harmless (even completely intangible!) to him, but...
     ...Suddenly, Seraph Lanval emerges from his bottle, dressed in those aquamarine, blue-ish hues of his choice of clothing, like a drunken lout's decided to put on some priestly clothes. Normally, this would be a call for the game to stop and eject him because wow.
     The ball shoots up past Lanval, and he sizes up everything--
     He looks to the ambitious, self-centered Jeri, who looks so fierce.
     He looks to Makki, who seems troubled but has found some sort of joy.
     He looks to Elsa, whose speed matches her eagerness.
     He looks to Katy, aggressive and fiercely focused.
     He looks to Rels, a pleasant (and large) soul with such mirth to simply being here...
     ...and all the way to Pike in the back, who shouts not in fear nor panic, but in broad strokes.
     Lanval is in an uncomfortable position, because he doesn't like being in bodies of water that host a lot of pyreflies. They're weird, but somehow, in the moments that pass... he starts to smile, relax.
     As a Water Seraph, this sort of place... is basically the equivalent of his house. He could bend the water any way he pleases. For all intents and purposes, there is no single greater possible athlete among them than this fellow. The Ruby Raiders have this in the ba--
     "Ha ha ha!" Lanval laughs as he waves a hand vaguely in the ball's direction...
     ...and...
     ...compels it towards Rels, all the way back there?!
     Then... that means...
     *another breath*
 
     Lanval was the traditional Tales traitor all along...!! I mean this was totally foreshadowed, his clothing coloring is only a few shades brighter than the Little Lightnings uniform color, wow, even from before he came to Spira - WHAT A TWEEST
 
     ...
 
     *pant* *pant* *wheeze*

DG: Seraph Lanval has contributed a Wits Basic Action toward his party's challenge, Trash Talk!.
<Pose Tracker> Prissa has posed.

 
Prissa shares the burning blood of a professional Blitzer!!!!!!!!

By which we mean:

SOMEWHERE, IN A LOCKER ROOM, the free agent Linna lowers her head and sighs.

PRISSA, who now has the job title "Free Agent," because she has taken a SIGN ON FEE, floats in the water. The sign-on free was 110 gil plus expenses (as in lunch and a couple of drinks).

Prissa has stripped out of most of her knife carrying gear, although she has her face-mask forged on Filgaia on. Apparently it was either waterproof or she is dealing with the problem of water damage by not giving a shit.

"Don't take them lightly," Prissa tells Layna. "Children have many advantages in the game. They have excellent reflexes and will do whatever it takes to win. Also, their lack of the anxieties and doubts that come with puberty give them an intense focus on the prize. On the goal!!"

Prissa gestures at the goal for emphasis.

"However, they are vulnerable to being tackled, as they remain small and weak," Prissa concludes strategically.

Her attention turns towards Lanval gesturing, and the ball going towards the children.

"Huh," she says. "A bold strategy."

DG: Prissa has contributed a Wits Basic Action toward her party's challenge, Trash Talk!.
<Pose Tracker> Lydia Seren has posed.

"Oh good, Lanval." Lydia says. "We needed another teammate!"

A blitzball is kicked into her horn and it deflates, forcing a replacement ball to be tossed in. She is not getting paid to do this because she didn't think to ask for money here since she just wanted to play. Woops! She could've removed another 100 gil from Prissa's debt!! This isn't to say that trying to scrounge up money for this purpose isn't really her primary activity on Spira right now.

Lydia has to endure plenty of trash talk. She is called various names and insults as she kind of hangs out with a blitzball stuck on her horn.

She looks towards Katy.

She stares at Katy.

And she throws Schrodinger at Katy's face before swimming out to try and snag the ball.

"MRREOOW..!" Schrodinger shrieks, claws extended as he flies towards the child's face.

Lydia doesn't react well to being teased, apparenntly.

"So we should just beat them up?" Lydia asks, a little too late, of Prissa.

DG: Lydia Seren has used her Tool Schrodinger the Cat toward her party's challenge, Trash Talk!.
==========================<* Community Blitzball *>===========================
========================<* CHALLENGE - Trash Talk! *>=========================
|Type: Entry       |Dungeon Ability: Wits      |Challenge Rating: 1          | 
--------------------------< Challenge Information: >--------------------------
 Community Blitzball 101: This is a pick-up game of blitzball, played at Luca  
 in the off-hours, when the arena is not in use by the pros. The exploration   
 cards will assume that you or your opponents have the ball roughly half the   
 time each, but if you'd like to ignore that suggestion and go the other way   
 with the card's scenario, that's completely fine. The score is rarely         
 mentioned; keep as much or as little track of it as you find fun! (You are    
 broadly encouraged, for purposes of excitement, to assume that it's a close   
 game at all times.) Much as one doesn't necessarily detail walking down       
 every single corridor in a dungeon in a pose, this Dig isn't so much          
 designed to simulate every continuous moment of a blitzball game as it is     
 made to create Great Sports Moments In Blitzball for you to enjoy.            
                                                                               
 Today's Opponent: The Little Lightnings don't technically have a maximum age  
 but in practice none of them are more than ten years old. They play after     
 school, and they play to win -- underestimating them would be a big mistake   
 (and one that people make constantly). Their size is a real disadvantage,     
 though, one that they overcome by being clever, sometimes infuriatingly so.   
                                                                               
 LF: Jeri of Luca. Most likely to hog the ball. Also most likely to score,     
 so...                                                                         
 RF: Makki of Besaid. The new kid in town; homesick, but enjoying the          
 attention they get by being great at blitzball. Can perform the Sphere Shot.  
 MF: Elsa Guado. Somehow both the tallest and lightest of the team; extremely  
 quick to get the ball, but can lose it very easily. Kicks shins.              
 LD: Katy of Luca. A biter, but her tongue is as sharp as her teeth -- she     
 nasty.                                                                        
 RD: Rels Ronso. The youngest, and the biggest. Too good for this world.       
 GL: Pike of Luca. Team captain which is unusual for a goalie. Shouts a lot    
 of encouragement and instructions... and trash talk.                          
                                                                               
 BGM: Blitzoff! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0iJdLRpS_zA                    
                                                                               
 NOBODY is meaner than a little kid, and before the game has even started      
 these brats are going at it with obscene gestures, silly faces, and, worst    
 of all, absolutely dead-on impersonations of their opponents, right down to   
 both expression and swimming style. When the ball enters play they're going   
 to get it first simply because your team is too distracted to act quickly,    
 unless you can keep from rising to their bait.                                
=Dungeon Conditions: Stupify==================================================
=====================<* Community Blitzball - Round 1 *>======================
==========================< Results - Trash Talk! >===========================
Player                               Exhaustion                      Pass/Fail
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Layna Manydays                      0 --(5)--> 5                   Fail
Investigate                         0   Wits    Effects: BASIC                
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Seraph Lanval                       0 --(5)--> 5                   Fail
Investigate                         0   Wits    Effects: BASIC                
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Prissa                              0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Investigate                         0   Wits    Effects: BASIC                
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lydia Seren                         0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Schrodinger the Cat                 2   Wits    Effects: Enlighten            
----------------------------------< Party >-----------------------------------
Leader: Layna Manydays              0 --(20)--> 20                 Pass
Conditions: Stupify(2)
Effects: Enlighten(1)
==============================< Dream Chasers >===============================
DG: The party led by Layna Manydays has passed this challenge! The party gained 20 exploration! If anyone needs to use
party management commands, do so now. Otherwise, the next round's GM may begin the next round with +dungeon/draw.
<Pose Tracker> Layna Manydays has posed.

"Aye, aye, not to worry. I remember how I was when I was their age - a real hellion, I was!" Layna remarks with laughter, then pauses. "...That's lowercase hellion, I should say, aye?"

That was an important distinction to make these days.

And...blitzoff!!

Layna focuses primarily on egging the Little Lightnings, returning their jeers and gibes with equal fervor, though all in good fun. Dahlia, watching from the stands, rolls her eyes and lets out a sigh.

But she's so focused on the act that, when she goes to try and catch the ball...she doesn't know when it slips out of fingers at the last second, through Lanval's grand betrayal!!

Rels is just surprised that the ball is flying in their direction - they usually never got their hands on the ball!

Lydia, meanwhile, goes with the clever strategy of hurling a cat at a child's face. This works surprisingly well and, surprisingly, isn't against the rules?

A case was made against it some thirty years ago due to a scandal some years ago where a star Blitzball player's pet cat ended up taking their place in the game and earned the team's victory, but the movement lost steam before it could pick up any real supporters.

Prissa, being perhaps the one with the most experience here, will have no problems resisting the trash talk, and even points out the Little Lightning's greatest weakness.

And so, the game begins in earnest! As it continues, momentum shifts in the Ruby Raider's favor...but how long will that remain the case?

DG: Prissa has drawn a new Challenge.
==========================<* Community Blitzball *>===========================
=======================<* CHALLENGE - Invisible Shot *>=======================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Wits      |Challenge Rating: 1          | 
--------------------------< Challenge Information: >--------------------------
 They have the ball and you don't. At least, you think they have the ball.     
 They definitely HAD the ball. Someone just took a shot -- and struck with     
 such perfect technique, and such a cunning angle, that the ball has vanished  
 into thin... water!                                                           
                                                                               
 If nobody can figure out a way to find the ball before it reaches the goal,   
 your goalie doesn't have a chance of stopping it. It has to be there          
 somewhere...                                                                  
=Dungeon Conditions: Save Point===============================================
<Pose Tracker> Prissa has posed.

 
BLITZ!

The scrum continues. Prissa is...

Well... Lydia may be disappointed in her friend, because the fact of the matter is that she gives her all in everything she does! As in, she overcommits to literally every move as if she has learned that mashing 'strong kick' means she will do the most damage. That's a metaphor, but may show her spirit.

Some play evolutions later...

"HRAH!" shouts Jeri of Luca as he twists round for a shot towards the goal -

Prissa sees it coming and positions herself, smugly, ready to bounce the ball off her abs and catch it.

It doesn't come. Prissa looks up and points towards -- Elsa!! Who is sliding those big Guado hands behind her back. But all of this is a feint within a feint, because the ball has in fact gone secretly towards --

Where?

It's not immediately clear.

Though there is one clue: Rels Ronso floats there, making even more of a :3 face than his face naturally trends towards.

DG: Prissa has contributed a Wits Basic Action toward her party's challenge, Invisible Shot.
<Pose Tracker> Seraph Lanval has posed.

    Lanval seems to spend the time mostly laughing along and having the joy of SHOWING HIS TRUE COLORS AT A CRITICAL TIME IN THE FATE OF THE... blitzball scrimmage. Katy says a bunch of mean things, because they are Katy and in some ways they are more cat than the actual Ronso, because wow, the claws on those words. He seems to just be swept up in the fun of it all.
     ...
     When the ball disappears, Lanval, too, is drifting by, making the exact same kind of cat-like face as Rels.
     :3
     ...This needs a correction, he's now wearing that stupid cutscene-ruining novelty glasses attachment as he drifts by, so it's more...
     83
     This doesn't help, unless... they see it in the reflection?!

DG: Seraph Lanval has used his Tool Amber Tinted Glasses toward his party's challenge, Invisible Shot.
<Pose Tracker> Layna Manydays has posed.

It's been quite the game so far, Layna has to admit. She figured she'd just go in, try to play well but not overwhelm the Little Lightnings, but it turns out what they lack in height and experience they make up for with teamwork skills and speed. Having Lanval on their team certain helps, too.

Layna has had some time to recover from this SHOCKING REVELATION, and now she's keeping a close eye on him, just in case. He's one with the water, after all, and they were currently surrounded by the stuff. This was, literally, his element.

Jeri throws the ball and it...vanishes? Layna frowns, looking from side to side. Where did it go...? It could be anywhere by now. She knew where it was likely heading, but if they couldn't find or intercept it before it got there...

Out of the corner of Lanval's glasses, Layna catches a sign of movement. Quickly she turns and rushes forward, trying to catch up with it...!

But is it the ball, or merely a feint...?

DG: Layna Manydays has contributed a Wits Basic Action toward her party's challenge, Invisible Shot.
<Pose Tracker> Lydia Seren has posed.

Schrodinger continues to latch on, horrified by its present circumstance. Lydia is grinning with a mad look in her eyes. "Neheheheheh.....! Yes... Yesss...! Good work Schrodinger!!" Another cat appears in her hands. This cat is also Schrodinger. "MROW?"

Lydia lets go of the second Schrodinger and says, "Go! Find us the ball!"

"Mewwrr..." Schrodinger starts 'dog paddling' through the water at a gradual rate. "If we split up we can cover more ground!"

She is not disappointed in Prissa because she is just assuming Prissa is playing easy on these kids because they are preteens. Lydia is doing the same! Right? Well maybe that was her plan before they made fun of her height WHICH SHE IS SENSITIVE ABOUT OKAY?

The prior blitzball remains deflated around her horn.

DG: Lydia Seren has used her Tool Schrodinger the Cat toward her party's challenge, Invisible Shot.
==========================<* Community Blitzball *>===========================
=======================<* CHALLENGE - Invisible Shot *>=======================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Wits      |Challenge Rating: 1          | 
--------------------------< Challenge Information: >--------------------------
 They have the ball and you don't. At least, you think they have the ball.     
 They definitely HAD the ball. Someone just took a shot -- and struck with     
 such perfect technique, and such a cunning angle, that the ball has vanished  
 into thin... water!                                                           
                                                                               
 If nobody can figure out a way to find the ball before it reaches the goal,   
 your goalie doesn't have a chance of stopping it. It has to be there          
 somewhere...                                                                  
=Dungeon Conditions: Save Point===============================================
=====================<* Community Blitzball - Round 2 *>======================
=========================< Results - Invisible Shot >=========================
Player                               Exhaustion                      Pass/Fail
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Layna Manydays                      5 --(5)--> 10                  Fail
Investigate                         0   Wits    Effects: BASIC                
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Seraph Lanval                       5 --(0)--> 5                   Pass
Amber Tinted Glasses                3   Wits    Effects: Fanfare              
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Prissa                              0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Investigate                         0   Wits    Effects: BASIC                
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lydia Seren                         0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Schrodinger the Cat                 2   Wits    Effects: Enlighten            
----------------------------------< Party >-----------------------------------
Leader: Layna Manydays              20 --(20)--> 40                Pass
Conditions: Save Point(1)|Stupify(1)
Effects: Enlighten(1)
==============================< Dream Chasers >===============================
DG: The party led by Layna Manydays has passed this challenge! The party gained 20 exploration! If anyone needs to use
party management commands, do so now. Otherwise, the next round's GM may begin the next round with +dungeon/draw.
<Pose Tracker> Prissa has posed.

 
Lanval has some anatomical differences from Rels, who is a pleasant shade of blue - potentially a superintelligent one. And yet: Same energy.

"If you aren't in the spirit of the game, Seymour feeds you to his Aeon," Prissa complains at Lanval a little bit, but only a little bit. Layna turns to rush the ball, which may in fact be just a disruptive eddy in the water produced by the mad skills of a mighty Guado hand!

Schrodinger meanwhile takes his own sweet time to swim over towards things.

Prissa looks round for a moment.

And then...

The truth is revealed as Katy unfolds her arms. Yes!! She was using Obfuscate!! (No; she's wearing fairly blue clothing and was swimming on the far side of all the cavitation bubbles that Elsa was creating.) She's holding the ball, and she's out of the range of everyone.

Prissa's face: D:

"Hehehehe! Score for Lightnings! POW," Katy declares, spiking the ball towards -

Schrodinger?!

The cat bats the blitzball several times while splaying out as if laying on a table. Despite being hurled in a technically excellent and not particularly weak serve, the blitzball rolls away, toppling off on a weird bubble-trail curve approximately towards the center of the fields.

"I didn't see the cat move!" Elsa cries out.

"Well, nobody was looking!" Prissa calls back, radiant with the satisfaction of defeating a child in a battle of wits.

DG: Seraph Lanval has drawn a new Challenge.
===============================================<* Community Blitzball *>================================================
==============================================<* CHALLENGE - Tiki Taka *>===============================================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Agility   |Challenge Rating: 1          | 
-----------------------------------------------< Challenge Information: >-----------------------------------------------
 They have the ball and you don't. And they keep PASSING IT!                   
                                                                               
 'One Touch Blitzball' is really hard to do. The idea here is that you just    
 keep passing the ball around, all over the arena, throwing it onwards with    
 the same motion with which you caught it. Short, quick, safe passes. Back     
 and forth and back and forth and back and forth -- advancement to shooting    
 position is almost an afterthought. If done well, it can disorient and        
 exhaust your opponents; once they make a mistake, you go for the goal.        
                                                                               
 But it's often done poorly, because it requires an extraordinary amount of    
 skill.                                                                        
                                                                               
 And this isn't exactly the big leagues.                                       
                                                                               
 There are many opportunities to catch up with that ball, if only they can be  
 seized....                                                                    
=Dungeon Conditions: Exhaust==================================================
<Pose Tracker> Seraph Lanval has posed.

    There is a common truth that even the simplest mind can pick up here within the Blitzball Sphere - having the ball is good. Having the ball, in short spurts, is fun! Short spurts, because having the ball tends to attract people who don't want you to have the ball, which often means one will accumulate... boo-boos. And sadness. And then they won't have the ball any more.
     Lanval, who technically does not have a brain in the conventional sense, has a solution! Which he enacts, and also enforces, because the water is his to project and control out of sheer whimsy.
     "Let'sh jusht keep throwing the ball...! Ha ha ha!" He's enjoying it! It takes him back to the days of the Rylia settlement, watching the children play by similar means. Now he gets to play too, and...
     ...they do indeed keep throwing the ball.
     Makki, the new kid in town, shows impressive fundamental passing skill, deftly passing it back over...
     To Elsa, who catches it between her large hands as she gracefully torpedoes through the water, holding onto it for a moment before throwing it towards...
     Katy, who has nothing nice to say about how Elsa kept holding onto it as she passes it off-handedly to...
     Rels, who gently pats it, all smiles as the ball glides towards...
     Pike, who yells a reprimand for throwing it towards their goal and, knowing better, hurls it over to Jeri.
     Jeri lines up and hurls the ball towards the Raiders' goal because of course they're going to try to, they're here to win--
     Only for Lanval to catch it, incidentally, a rare beneficial moment as he laughs and then just tosses it back over their way.
     "Awww... why would he feed ny of thish to an Aeon," Lanval says as he drifts by lazily, the FELL TRAITOR TO THE GOOD GUYS, "it'sh sho much fun... why not play too~"
     ...which is what they're doing... if not maybe the same game he's playing, but if he's giving the invitation for them to come play, then that means there might be a chance that Lanval doesn't mess with the way the ball travels. A chance to take back possession of the Blitzball!
     Except the kids are kids, who are the meanest things in existence, and will tauntingly keep the ball away from any and all of the Raiders. Complicating(?) matters is how Lanval happily sighs out airy bubble pockets that might catch and disrupt the ball, too, but also be a chance unto themselves?!

DG: Seraph Lanval has used his Tool Bubble Pipe toward his party's challenge, Tiki Taka.
<Pose Tracker> Layna Manydays has posed.

Layna watches as Schrodinger intercepts the ball. She stares, blinking...and then shrugs.

Hey, as long as it works!

There's a brief moment, in between this round and the previous, where Layna ducks out of the sphere to grab a drink. It's non-alchoholic for once, but it's still enough to give her a little boost.

Back in the sphere, Layna watches as the Little Lightnings and Lanval pass the ball back and forth. She consider it for a moment. She...could try to intercept it as they're passing it around - someone's bound to slip up eventually - but she has a different idea.

She swims down, below the entire group...and then, with a touch of wind-based sorcery to enhance her speed, she rockets upward while spinning! This is enough to put out a wave of force that might just disrupt the ball and make it easier for one of her teammates to grab it - and if it puts the ball through one of those bubble pockets too, all the better.

This might seem like a little overkill, but hey, if they're doing it she can do it too.

DG: Layna Manydays has used her Tool Quartermaster's Stash toward her party's challenge, Tiki Taka.
<Pose Tracker> Lydia Seren has posed.

In Lydia's experience, the actual meanest thing in all existence is old men with power but kids probably make the top 5, sure.

Lydia moves to catch the cat before the inertia from the ball sends it bonking into something. Despite how Lydia treats this cat sometimes, well, she still cares for the critter. Luckily these antics are more cartoony and aren't meant to be taken super realistically or she'd be in real trouble!!

"You know..." Lydia starts RAD ... SWIMMING??? as she aims to kick the ball towards a friend, skates and all. "I just realized something."

Her eyes narrow in thought. "Are we supposed to be trying to beat the children or like just make it seem like it's tough? Or.... completely destroy them?"

Oh no philosophy she might be losing out on effectiveness soon!!

DG: Lydia Seren has used her Tool Radical Skates toward her party's challenge, Tiki Taka.
===============================================<* Community Blitzball *>================================================
==============================================<* CHALLENGE - Tiki Taka *>===============================================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Agility   |Challenge Rating: 1          | 
-----------------------------------------------< Challenge Information: >-----------------------------------------------
 They have the ball and you don't. And they keep PASSING IT!                   
                                                                               
 'One Touch Blitzball' is really hard to do. The idea here is that you just    
 keep passing the ball around, all over the arena, throwing it onwards with    
 the same motion with which you caught it. Short, quick, safe passes. Back     
 and forth and back and forth and back and forth -- advancement to shooting    
 position is almost an afterthought. If done well, it can disorient and        
 exhaust your opponents; once they make a mistake, you go for the goal.        
                                                                               
 But it's often done poorly, because it requires an extraordinary amount of    
 skill.                                                                        
                                                                               
 And this isn't exactly the big leagues.                                       
                                                                               
 There are many opportunities to catch up with that ball, if only they can be  
 seized....                                                                    
=Dungeon Conditions: Exhaust==================================================
<Pose Tracker> Prissa has posed.

 
Prissa is not like the fox, who knows many things.

Prissa is not like the chocobo, who knows two things (KWEH and, depending on who you listen to, WARK or CHOCO METEOR).

Prissa is like the hedgehog, who knows one thing.

And that one thing is to go all out. She swims upwards for a few body lengths even as she answers Lydia. "You shouldn't crack their brains open, but we should play our all. Isn't that right, you little ones??"

"Don't call us little"
"YES. GO HARD."
"you can just give up if you want"
"uuugh"

Katy of Luca is about to say something to add to this response when PRISSA ABRUPTLY SLAMS INTO HER, a sort of flying Javelin-Woman tackle which would probably get a foul in a real game! Fortunately the water buffers much of the actual force, this would be comically reckless on land! Here it's just kind of reckless.

DG: Prissa has used her Tool Zipline Javelin toward her party's challenge, Tiki Taka.
===============================================<* Community Blitzball *>================================================
==============================================<* CHALLENGE - Tiki Taka *>===============================================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Agility   |Challenge Rating: 1          | 
-----------------------------------------------< Challenge Information: >-----------------------------------------------
 They have the ball and you don't. And they keep PASSING IT!                   
                                                                               
 'One Touch Blitzball' is really hard to do. The idea here is that you just    
 keep passing the ball around, all over the arena, throwing it onwards with    
 the same motion with which you caught it. Short, quick, safe passes. Back     
 and forth and back and forth and back and forth -- advancement to shooting    
 position is almost an afterthought. If done well, it can disorient and        
 exhaust your opponents; once they make a mistake, you go for the goal.        
                                                                               
 But it's often done poorly, because it requires an extraordinary amount of    
 skill.                                                                        
                                                                               
 And this isn't exactly the big leagues.                                       
                                                                               
 There are many opportunities to catch up with that ball, if only they can be  
 seized....                                                                    
=Dungeon Conditions: Exhaust==================================================
==========================================<* Community Blitzball - Round 3 *>===========================================
================================================< Results - Tiki Taka >=================================================
Player                               Exhaustion                      Pass/Fail
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Layna Manydays                      10 --(0)--> 10                 Pass
Quartermaster's Stash               2   Agility Effects: Quicken              
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Seraph Lanval                       5 --(0)--> 5                   Pass
Bubble Pipe                         3   Agility Effects: Rally                
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Prissa                              0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Zipline Javelin                     2   Agility Effects: Stalwart             
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lydia Seren                         0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Radical Skates                      3   Agility Effects: Fanfare              
-------------------------------------------------------< Party >--------------------------------------------------------
Leader: Layna Manydays              40 --(20)--> 60                Pass
Conditions: Exhaust(1)
Effects: Quicken(1)
===================================================< Dream Chasers >====================================================
DG: The party led by Layna Manydays has passed this challenge! The party gained 20 exploration! If anyone needs to use
party management commands, do so now. Otherwise, the next round's GM may begin the next round with +dungeon/draw.
<Pose Tracker> Seraph Lanval has posed.

    Layna takes the chance, as she stirs the winds and whips around the waters - which Lanval opens his eyes half-lidded and starts to fight back against, because HEARTFELT TRAITOR DUEL TIME (or not), but this changes the course of the ball's destiny...
     As Lydia TOTALLY RADICALLY GRINDS THE BLITZBALL SPHERE, FROM THE INSIDE, SOMEHOW BECAUSE IT IS THAT RAD (she is racking up a mad stunt multiplier) culminating in her somehow doing a sweet trick around the Blitzball itself as she stops it just shy of Katy's hands, punting it away.
     why just shy? Because Prissa just bowls over her, and oh wow that is a curse word. That is a salty curse word that is fit to go on fries and also on the rim of a margarita. Rels whines about using bad words.
     "...It'sh the happiesht I've sheen anyone here," Lanval comments as his latest TRAITOR PLOY is foiled, the ball in possession of the Raiders, "...I don't wanna take that from 'em..."

DG: Layna Manydays has drawn a new Challenge.
==========================<* Community Blitzball *>===========================
=========================<* CHALLENGE - Mark Mode *>==========================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Wits      |Challenge Rating: 3          | 
--------------------------< Challenge Information: >--------------------------
 They have the ball and you don't. They also have sweet moves that you don't   
 have, so back in the locker room you all decided to each pick an opposing     
 player to watch very closely. Spreading out like that can make it tough to    
 stop plays, though. Can you keep up with your mark? Can you learn from them?  
 Or are you in over your head, and about to learn another kind of lesson,      
 when they dunk on you and score?                                              
                                                                               
 If you succeed at this challenge, you may learn one of the following          
 techniques:                                                                   
                                                                               
 Venom Shot - Poisons the goalie if they touch the ball.                       
 Venom Pass - Poisons a blocker if they get a hand on the ball.                
 Venom Tackle - Poisons the ball-carrier, whether or not you get the ball      
 from them.                                                                    
=Dungeon Conditions: Secret===================================================
<Pose Tracker> Layna Manydays has posed.

"Well," Layna says, giving it some thought as she glances toward Lydia. "You don't want to let them win, or go too easy on 'em. These kids are pretty bright - they'd figure it out right away. But you don't want to completely demoralize 'em, either. So...Prissa's got the right of it, I'd say."

That was how she was approaching it, anyway. She wanted to make sure they had a good time, but actually had to put forth some effort in doing so.

And put forth effort they do - after their previous plan was foiled, the Little Lightnings decide to break out some special techniques they learned by studying some of the other Blitzball players they've watched, causing various negative effects to those on the receiving end.

It might be a pretty surprising change, and them breaking them out now is enough to turn the momentum of the match in their favor.

Fortunately, it's half-time - there's time to go back to the locker room, get a little rest...and, more importantly, consider just where the heck they learned those skills, and whether or not they can learn them too.

"It's pretty impressive that they've got techniques like that, aye? I thought we were the ones who'd end up teachin' them, but they might have some thin's worth learnin', too..." Layna considers.

She'll watch their moves carefully in the coming round, very remniscent of using her telescope.

DG: Layna Manydays has used her Tool Captain's Telescope toward her party's challenge, Mark Mode.
<Pose Tracker> Seraph Lanval has posed.

    Lanval waves in a friendly greeting to one of the children. More than understandably, one of these children - it rhimes with Lady - straight up Venom Tackles him and in all fairness that's natural, he's this weirdo who showed up uninvited.
     Come halftime, the officials in question try to chase Lanval out of the sphere, since he is technically an extra party. They run into a snag - Seraphim are not native to Spira, and thus they do not understand one of the more 'annoying' qualities as relates to them.
     He's tied to a vessel they've yet to remove. So he just pops back into the bottle that appears to have continued to miss scrutiny. This is good, because that means he can't possibly BE A TRAITORPANTS who will LEAK PLANS TO THE ENEMY because now he's too busy making sport of the whole thing.
     When they come back the next round, marks are made, and eyes are on what they do and how they do it. Lanval re-manifests in the water again and everyone is confused about how he even got back in there.
     The game only persists because sports comedy.
     The ball ends up in his grasp by... well, probably not accident, for how often he's bent the way the water flows.
     "Aww, that sheemsh like it'sh a bit rough, ain't it..." He says, as he's simultaneously mobbed by Jeri and Makki who would really like for the ball to be in their hands. Elsa starts kicking at his (metaphysical anatomical equivalent of) calves to get him to let go. Katy's got a new swear in there as she screams for said ball. Rels comes up to give Lanval a hug because Rels is full of love and does not know better.
     "...Mmm... okaaaay, whatever makesh ya happy... ha ha ha! Have funnnn~" He releases the ball and Jeri fights it right out of Makki's hands to some protests as he lines up a Venom Shot. Unwittingly, he might have given everyone a clear view of how this technique is done.

DG: Seraph Lanval has used his Tool Amber Tinted Glasses toward his party's challenge, Mark Mode.
===============================================<* Community Blitzball *>================================================
==============================================<* CHALLENGE - Mark Mode *>===============================================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Wits      |Challenge Rating: 3          | 
-----------------------------------------------< Challenge Information: >-----------------------------------------------
 They have the ball and you don't. They also have sweet moves that you don't   
 have, so back in the locker room you all decided to each pick an opposing     
 player to watch very closely. Spreading out like that can make it tough to    
 stop plays, though. Can you keep up with your mark? Can you learn from them?  
 Or are you in over your head, and about to learn another kind of lesson,      
 when they dunk on you and score?                                              
                                                                               
 If you succeed at this challenge, you may learn one of the following          
 techniques:                                                                   
                                                                               
 Venom Shot - Poisons the goalie if they touch the ball.                       
 Venom Pass - Poisons a blocker if they get a hand on the ball.                
 Venom Tackle - Poisons the ball-carrier, whether or not you get the ball      
 from them.                                                                    
=Dungeon Conditions: Secret===================================================
<Pose Tracker> Prissa has posed.

 
"I refuse to learn anything from these delinquents," Prissa says.

CHANCE OF BEING OWNED BY A BLITZBALL IMMEDIATELY AFTER THIS: 85%

DG: Prissa has contributed a Wits Basic Action toward her party's challenge, Mark Mode.
<Pose Tracker> Lydia Seren has posed.

"Prissa!" Lydia says. "We have to learn... otherwise we'll lose! We haven't even gotten the ball yet, really. Geeze! I want to make some plays already!"

She places a Schrodinger on her head and studies the players intently-- particularly focused on the folks in the front and middle of the formation to try and get an idea of how they're doing what they're doing. Sure, she can METEOR CRASH but it turns out there are plenty of other options in Advanced Community Blitzball against Ten Year Olds. This isn't like the Ronso which made the game less a game and more a casual brawl.

DG: Lydia Seren has used her Tool Schrodinger the Cat toward her party's challenge, Mark Mode.
==========================<* Community Blitzball *>===========================
=========================<* CHALLENGE - Mark Mode *>==========================
|Type: Exploration |Dungeon Ability: Wits      |Challenge Rating: 3          | 
--------------------------< Challenge Information: >--------------------------
 They have the ball and you don't. They also have sweet moves that you don't   
 have, so back in the locker room you all decided to each pick an opposing     
 player to watch very closely. Spreading out like that can make it tough to    
 stop plays, though. Can you keep up with your mark? Can you learn from them?  
 Or are you in over your head, and about to learn another kind of lesson,      
 when they dunk on you and score?                                              
                                                                               
 If you succeed at this challenge, you may learn one of the following          
 techniques:                                                                   
                                                                               
 Venom Shot - Poisons the goalie if they touch the ball.                       
 Venom Pass - Poisons a blocker if they get a hand on the ball.                
 Venom Tackle - Poisons the ball-carrier, whether or not you get the ball      
 from them.                                                                    
=Dungeon Conditions: Secret===================================================
=====================<* Community Blitzball - Round 4 *>======================
===========================< Results - Mark Mode >============================
Player                               Exhaustion                      Pass/Fail
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Layna Manydays                      10 --(0)--> 10                 Pass
Captain's Telescope                 3   Wits    Effects: Fanfare              
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Seraph Lanval                       5 --(0)--> 5                   Pass
Amber Tinted Glasses                3   Wits    Effects: Fanfare              
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Prissa                              0 --(5)--> 5                   Fail
Investigate                         0   Wits    Effects: BASIC                
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lydia Seren                         0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Schrodinger the Cat                 2   Wits    Effects: Enlighten            
----------------------------------< Party >-----------------------------------
Leader: Layna Manydays              60 --(20)--> 80                Pass
Conditions: Secret(2)
Effects: Enlighten(1)
==============================< Dream Chasers >===============================
DG: The party led by Layna Manydays has passed this challenge! The party gained 20 exploration! If anyone needs to use
party management commands, do so now. Otherwise, the next round's GM may begin the next round with +dungeon/draw.
DG: Lydia Seren has drawn a new Challenge.
==========================<* Community Blitzball *>===========================
======================<* CHALLENGE - Double Overtime *>=======================
|Type: Final       |Dungeon Ability: Agility   |Challenge Rating: 4          | 
--------------------------< Challenge Information: >--------------------------
 The game went to overtime and both sides scored; double overtime is about to  
 start. The players are about to re-enter the pool when... IT HAPPENS.         
                                                                               
 The voice -- smarmy, self-righteous, and utterly, perfectly confident, comes  
 out of nowhere. "Hey... how 'bout you pick on someone your own size?"         
                                                                               
 "BIG BRO!!" someone cries gratefully.                                         
                                                                               
 Bickson, star player of the legendary Luca Goers, tags out his sibling.       
 "Hey, kiddo. Don't worry... I'm here to save the day."                        
                                                                               
 He sniffs at your rag-tag team. Or maybe his face always looks like that.     
                                                                               
 And then he gets in the arena and is liable to score about twenty goals in    
 the next five minutes. Can you stop him, much less score against him?         
                                                                               
 This is... the ULTIMATE CHALLENGE...!!                                        
=Dungeon Conditions: Cripple==================================================
<Pose Tracker> Layna Manydays has posed.

This time they're ready for the enemy's techniques, and that makes all the difference. The Little Lightnings, irritated as they are, give a few more tells than they normally would.

Rels goes to tackle Layna(nicely, the poor kid doesn't have a violent bone in his body) and she just kind of...stops him with a hand to the head, careful to avoid the horn.

'Oh, that's how that works.' She remarks to herself, taking note of his technique before pushing him away gently.


> Learned Venom Tackle!

Lydia, too, will be able to take notes on a technique, and Prissa will get a good look at one of them as a Blitzball heads right for her face. Good thing she's wearing a mask!

Lanval, meanwhile, continues to be Lanval. Layna sends him a questioning look with an eyebrow raised. Even she isn't quite sure what, if anything, he's up to here.

<Pose Tracker> Lydia Seren has posed.

LYDIA SEREN HAS EARNED VENOM SHOT.

She also has a poison icon over her head. Luckily there's a break for overtime shortly after and Lydia and the rest head back into the water relatively refreshed.

"Hey... how 'bout you pick on someone your own size?"

"Um we did. This is just a chill game I--oh." Lydia begins.

"BIG BRO!" Jeri shouts. It's canon now.

Bickson tags Jeri out, "Hey, kiddo, don't worry. I'm here to save the day."

He turns to look towards the RUBY RAIDERS and seems to recognize Lydia.

"Oh hey... it's you. Been wondering where you've been at."

Lydia awkwardly kinda shrugs a bit.

"You tryin' to carry this team? Maybe you're not as good as we thought... Here, let me show you how to carry a team."

The whistle blows and--

--you know how in every Inazuma Eleven game where the hero team is suddenly confronted by new rivals and the new rivals, to show how good and evil they are, score like a million points and leave the hero team broken?

THAT'S YOUR FATE UNLESS YOU SOMEHOW HANG ON!

Lydia does her best, but--

BUT--

<Pose Tracker> Lydia Seren has posed.
DG: Lydia Seren has used her Tool Radical Skates toward her party's challenge, Double Overtime.
<Pose Tracker> Layna Manydays has posed.

Layna takes some time during the break to grab another drink - she shares it with any of the others who might also want it. It's as she's going back out onto the field that she hears someone shouting for their big brother. Who happens to be none other than...

"Oh great. It's one o' them." Layna remarks with a sigh. Indeed - Bickson, star player of the Luca Goers.

Layna rolls her neck. This just got leagues more serious.

"Hey now, we were just havin' a nice, friendly game. But if you want to show us a thing or two...then by all means! In the name o' the Ruby Raiders...show me what you got, lad!" A wide, malicious grin crosses over her face. Before her now was a dangerous opponent...this would not be an easy match - but that was what made it exciting.

Diving back into the sphere Layna takes a moment to limber up...and then shoots after Bickson to try out her new Venom Tackle on him!

DG: Layna Manydays has used her Tool Quartermaster's Stash toward her party's challenge, Double Overtime.
<Pose Tracker> Seraph Lanval has posed.

    The mortals among them learn important life lessons, like how to poison the life out of your fellow blitzball players. Lanval is just laughing and having fun even if he is being an outright disruptive presence. He's been helping the kids, mostly. He can't help that. They're happy. They're happy in a way he has never really seen Spira's people be. He wants them to be happy, and they're having fun playing with the ball, so... he kept giving them the ball.
     He used to be afraid of being submerged in pyrefly-filled waters just out of suspicion something bad could happen to him, or other Seraphim, if they got exposed to too much of it. Despite all evidence to the contrary. He continues to be a kind of pestilence... but this time he plops out of the water.
     Jeri shouts for their big bro, and Lanval's eyes open half-lidded to that fully-grown man he's seen a few times around the Markets. Something about competing to kick a ball? He mostly sat around and watched (and sometimes accidentally caught a ball).
     "...Why are they not comin' back in ta play?" Lanval asks. The tone of his voice goes lower, as though... worried? No, it's something else. "I don't like that." Lanval comments. Nobody should, because that's Bickson. The best player in the actual for-real pro leagues.
     He watches as Bickson dresses down Lydia verbally. He has no vocal commentary for that, because he doesn't have words. He has something else, as he walks...
     ...upright...
     ...back into the sphere.
     "Mortal," Lanval speaks in a more regal voice, eyes open all the way to that shining color. He is frowning at Bickson. "Thou seeketh to take away the mirth the child hath found in this land of suffering?"
     He sounds uncharacteristically angry. Misplaced, yes. Angry, very very yes.
     "Thou shalt answer for coveting the mirth that doth belong to them!" Um, this just got very serious, as Lanval does not lazily drift so much as take this position in the water, staring the star down as sorcerous power builds. "Relinquish thy blitzball and trouble them no more!!"
     Then things get crazy.
     Seraph Lanval's power as a water elemental now spans both of the worlds - his natural Seraphim birthright, and the Filgaian Guardian of Water, Schturdark. The water is his to bend, command, and do as he will. The very water of this Blitzball Sphere is, by and large, at his mercy. Bubbles flit out, as impediments to shooting or even maneuvering. Even if Bickson can get past that, the water flows as such it threatens to overpower and fling him right out of the sphere at any time.
     "Thou shalt grovel before those thou hath taken the joy from! Return the child to this place, and trouble Lydia no more!!" He commands, unaware that Bickson's sibling actually voluntarily tagged him in - ramping up the intensity in which he turns the water against them.
     The target of his ire should not be sold short. Bickson is an athlete in his prime who lives, breathes, and thrives in this environ, a master of the sport who (in seasons past) could sometimes even solo the Aurochs and, at least once, the Beasts. His game is so top of game that even the very water turning against him is no showstopper.
     If it were just these two, it would be a stalemate. An epic stalemate... but no way to determine a victor.
     Now is the time for the dawn of the Ruby Raiders in the annals of Blitzball history!!

DG: Seraph Lanval has used his Tool Bubble Pipe toward his party's challenge, Double Overtime.
<Pose Tracker> Prissa has posed.

 
'Prissa!!'

Prissa feels a sudden burst of shame. Guilt, almost. They've been playing so hard and being foiled. Lydia's been dreaming of the game ever since the time on Filgaia, and here she is asking like a brat. Her eyes turn towards the bottom of the sphere and she clenches her fists.

"Lydia," she says. "You're r-"

THWAP

> Learned nothing!

And by the time they return...

A Bickson has come. "You know him?" Prissa asks Lydia, as she adjusts her mask. Then she raises her voice: "OI!" Because now the honor of her team has been impugned.

Then Lanval wakes up. Prissa's head turns to look at him with profound shock and, for a moment, awe. Then her expression fades... and she pulls her mask back up from round her neck, to her face. When the Blitzball sweeps near her, she elbows it -- towards her friend

"Do you remember what I said about the children, Lydia?" Prissa says, as she puts her hands on Lydia's hips.

"About how we would be able to defeat them with the power of our superior body size? Well... now, the body size won't matter. But there is an advantage that you hold that none of us do. Not that Seraph, not Manydays... not I. Nor even Schrodinger. This is a power that rests within you. I know you may not care for it. But within you rests the power of..."

"-Inertia.-"

Prissa heaves back then as if she is going to hurl Lydia at the goal like a living javelin.

And then...

... She heaves Lydia at the goal!! Like a Living Javelin!! The throw would not have worked out nearly as well if she had not comically over-committed herself... and yet! CAN SHE DO LESS? In the face of this kind of a GREAT, PREDATORY BIRD?

DG: Prissa has used her Tool Zipline Javelin toward her party's challenge, Double Overtime.
===============================================<* Community Blitzball *>================================================
===========================================<* CHALLENGE - Double Overtime *>============================================
|Type: Final       |Dungeon Ability: Agility   |Challenge Rating: 4          | 
-----------------------------------------------< Challenge Information: >-----------------------------------------------
 The game went to overtime and both sides scored; double overtime is about to  
 start. The players are about to re-enter the pool when... IT HAPPENS.         
                                                                               
 The voice -- smarmy, self-righteous, and utterly, perfectly confident, comes  
 out of nowhere. "Hey... how 'bout you pick on someone your own size?"         
                                                                               
 "BIG BRO!!" someone cries gratefully.                                         
                                                                               
 Bickson, star player of the legendary Luca Goers, tags out his sibling.       
 "Hey, kiddo. Don't worry... I'm here to save the day."                        
                                                                               
 He sniffs at your rag-tag team. Or maybe his face always looks like that.     
                                                                               
 And then he gets in the arena and is liable to score about twenty goals in    
 the next five minutes. Can you stop him, much less score against him?         
                                                                               
 This is... the ULTIMATE CHALLENGE...!!                                        
=Dungeon Conditions: Cripple==================================================
==========================<* Community Blitzball *>===========================
======================<* CHALLENGE - Double Overtime *>=======================
|Type: Final       |Dungeon Ability: Agility   |Challenge Rating: 4          | 
--------------------------< Challenge Information: >--------------------------
 The game went to overtime and both sides scored; double overtime is about to  
 start. The players are about to re-enter the pool when... IT HAPPENS.         
                                                                               
 The voice -- smarmy, self-righteous, and utterly, perfectly confident, comes  
 out of nowhere. "Hey... how 'bout you pick on someone your own size?"         
                                                                               
 "BIG BRO!!" someone cries gratefully.                                         
                                                                               
 Bickson, star player of the legendary Luca Goers, tags out his sibling.       
 "Hey, kiddo. Don't worry... I'm here to save the day."                        
                                                                               
 He sniffs at your rag-tag team. Or maybe his face always looks like that.     
                                                                               
 And then he gets in the arena and is liable to score about twenty goals in    
 the next five minutes. Can you stop him, much less score against him?         
                                                                               
 This is... the ULTIMATE CHALLENGE...!!                                        
=Dungeon Conditions: Cripple==================================================
=====================<* Community Blitzball - Round 5 *>======================
========================< Results - Double Overtime >=========================
Player                               Exhaustion                      Pass/Fail
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Layna Manydays                      10 --(0)--> 10                 Fail
Quartermaster's Stash               2   Agility Effects: Quicken              
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Seraph Lanval                       5 --(0)--> 5                   Pass
Bubble Pipe                         3   Agility Effects: Rally                
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Prissa                              5 --(0)--> 5                   Fail
Zipline Javelin                     2   Agility Effects: Stalwart             
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Lydia Seren                         0 --(0)--> 0                   Pass
Radical Skates                      3   Agility Effects: Fanfare              
----------------------------------< Party >-----------------------------------
Leader: Layna Manydays              80 --(35)--> 115               Pass
Conditions: Cripple|Secret(1)
Effects: Quicken(1)
==============================< Dream Chasers >===============================
DG: You have overcome the dungeon's trials! This run is a success!
DG: The party led by Layna Manydays has successfully explored Community Blitzball!
==========================<* Community Blitzball *>===========================
====================<* CHALLENGE - The Weissman Trophy *>=====================
|Type: Discovery   |Dungeon Ability: Conclusion|Challenge Rating: 1          | 
--------------------------< Challenge Information: >--------------------------
 You didn't realize it when you started, but it turns out that this was a      
 pick-up tournament, and, given the seed as the newcomers, you've just won     
 the finals!                                                                   
                                                                               
 Your reward is a beaten-up but well-loved tin cup. And the jackpot, which     
 the other teams all donated originally when the tournament started: all the   
 50% off coupons for local cafes that they could find.                         
                                                                               
 Your responsibility is to show up this time next month to defend your title,  
 Champions.                                                                    
                                                                               
 BONUS! If you defeated the Secret Ultimate Challenge in Double Overtime:      
                                                                               
 On your way out of the locker room, you're approached by a man in a very      
 fine suit. He oozes charisma as well as wealth, but that doesn't make him     
 untrustworthy, necessarily. Especially since he's looking at you like you're  
 the Second Coming of Blitzball.                                               
                                                                               
 He hands you his card; he's an agent!                                         
                                                                               
 "If you ever want to play professionally... get in touch."                    
=Dungeon Conditions: Treasure=================================================
<Pose Tracker> Lydia Seren has posed.

Bickson destroys the team for a few minutes of play. He purposefully runs up to the goal and avoids making it just to toy with our heroes. Spirits are frayed, pirates are in pain, the children aren't even having fun because some dude is just beating down on the enemy team all on his lonesome, really, at this point.

All seems lost. Even Lydia is pounding her fist into the, uh, floor? But then Lanval steps in. Floats in? Drips in?? More importantly, Lanval starts talking shit.

Granted he is missing that he was tagged in willingly but the spirit of what he is saying still holds true. This was a game for FUN and Bickson saw it as an opportunity to assert Alpha Male Dominance.

Lydia's frustration is compounded, of course, by the fact that she looked up to this team when she first arrived until she saw that their behavior was less aggressive self confidence and more arrogant cruelty.

Bickson has no idea why Lanval has gotten shakespearian and is calling him Mortal and all that. It's unnerving though Bicksen, being a jerk jock, naturally double downs.

"Hey fatso don't know what you're on, but I'm the best player of the Luca Goers.. so how 'bout you make me?"

There is a collective gasp! Teasing and trash talk is one thing, but body shaming?!

Lydia stands herself up. The aches and pains and frustration is fading away, funneling into one emotion.

Rage

"You don't understand anything about blitzball."

"Pffh, I know how to score."

"Blitzball isn't about winning..."

The song starts up. Stand up, stand up! Let's stand up!

"It's about having fun!"

INAZUMA CHALLENGER!

Bickson decides that's enough messing around but gets surprised by Layna's SECRET TECHNIQUE that she had not shown for the whole match because...she did not know the technique until today.

Punch away your pessimism!

The strike is enough that he loses control of the ball! He tries to get it back but the water of the sphere itself seems to work against him.

Slide with your wit!

Lydia's eyes widen and she nods once to Prissa when she reveals her scheme, scarcely hearing it all out before begging. "Do it, do it!!" She grins fangedly. "This is our chance...!"

Getting all muddy only adds shines to your courage!

She is flung like a javelin towards the ball and bounces it up with her knee as she rapidly swims past children towards the goalie.

With the greedy challenger's spirit

"HEY BICKSON!" She shouts.

Don't cry, fight without giving in!

"Shit--!" Bickson breaks free and swims rapidly after Lydia but she's too far out to reach so easily...! "Kid! Stop that ball no matter what!"

Let's turn that vexation into power!

"Blitzball...." Lydia cries out as she kicks the ball up into her iconic METEOR CRASH shot, twisting upside down as she looks towards a very terrified goalie who realizes that the ball is still managing to be on fire underwater.

Dreams bloom in sweat and tears, We're burning hot like magma, Inazuma style

She kicks the ball that bursts into flames, cleaving open a vaccuum of water even as it surges towards the goal.

Like a worn out wild samurai, looking shabby but tough on the inside!

The ball slams through the net in the last moments and the buzzer rings! Lydia lets out a vibrant cheer, a game she was kind of being casual about has become one of the toughest matches of her life! She rushes back towards the player to dispense hugs and gratitude.

Stand up! Stand up! Let's stand up!

"Thanks everyone! It was tough but we pulled through! We gotta shake their hands now to show we're good sports!"

The kids line up but Bickson makes a 'tch' noise and leaves, swallowing his pride...FOR TODAY.

INAZUMA FIGHT! INAZUMA HERO!

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Lanval has posed.

    Lanval finds that Bickson might be the fiercest foe he's fought in so long, for he has never encountered a mortal who is so confident and capable in the water - but he does not relent. Spira struggles to find any lasting happiness, and that he watched the children be the happiest he has seen anyone here...
     It helps him double down on the sheer indignation of it all. Spira is not his realm to specifically protect, but if Obsession is running off of everyone's unhappiness, by Schturdark, Bickson is going to get it.
     It is Lydia who breaks through and makes the decisive goal alongside Prissa with a shot that shakes the very foundations of Blitzball... and he just booms in laughter as the single gretest player of Blitzball is thusly punked.
     He doesn't even let Bickson have the pleasure of taking the Blitzball and going home with it if he tries to retrieve it, as Lanval goes to retrieve his bottle and get out of there.
     "Ha ha ha... that wash fuuuuun~" Lanval smiles, the more casual slurring a revelation of the MISPLACED INDIGNATION having subsided. There'll be hand shaking... and even giving the Blitzball back to Jeri, because he noticed Jeri really likes having the ball. Maybe it means that much to them, he thinks. He had that ball more often than the rest, makes sense.
     A man in a very fine suit - by Spira standards, 'suits' are very different and kind of straddle the line between 'a merchant' and 'a high priest' - approaches Layna, the captain. He gives him her card, as an agent - apparently he thinks the Ruby Raiders could be going places. He'll make similar offers to the rest.
     Including Schrodinger.
     At least seven times.

<Pose Tracker> Layna Manydays has posed.

Layna nods to herself with a slight grin, as Prissa and Lydia's team attack manages to score the final point they needed!

Even with the addition of Bickson, the Ruby Raiders are victorious! Layna waves her pirates over, and they all shake hands with the Little Lightnings, congratulating them all on a good, hardfought match - and promising to challenge them again any time if they'd like a match.

More than that...it turns out that this was a pick-up tournment, the whole time, and they've won it all!

"Oh, uh...did I forget ta mention that when I asked for ya? Slipped my mind, it did!" Layna remarks, and then laughs, looking toward Prissa and Lydia. "Looks like I made the right choice in askin' the two of you, though! Great work out there - couldn'ta done it without ya!"

Layna is given a rather well-loved tin cup, which is currently stuffed full of coupons - and, from a fellow in a fine suit, a rather interesting card, which she stows away with interest.

"Come on, you're just as responsible for this. Let's show it off, aye?" She says, raising the tin cup up alongside everyone else for all to see.

As things start to quiet down, Layna glances Lanval's direction.

"So, uh...min' if I ask what that was all about, lad?" She asks, curious. Judging from his speech at the end there, though...she was sure she had an idea of it.

<Pose Tracker> Lydia Seren has posed.

Lydia says, "Heh heh... I should thank Bickson for making the match easier for us. Those kids were trouncing us until he fired us up!" She gives Lanval a big ol' hug right then and there. Prissa gets one too, even if she's too tired to pose. That's just how it is. Layna gets a high five.

"Wait we were kind of playing for real??" Her eyes widen. "Well...heh heh... we couldn't have done it without you! You sure learned that VENOM TACKLE real quick."

She blinks as a suit gives Layna a card, and uh--her one too.

Her eyes widen in shock...!

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Lanval has posed.

    Even though he's kind of a weirdo in a lot of ways, of all the kids there, it's Rels who probably gives Lanval the most spirited goodbye as they all go about going back to their lives, so he does his. Which is to say he lies down on the ground because when water isn't suspended up there, it tends to pool down this-a-way. So he likes it there.
 5tNot as much as the Luca Market street he is infatuated with, though.
     "Mmm... whaddaya mean?" He asks of Layna, looking up to her inquisitive and kind of disapproving gaze as she towers over him. "...Oh. Ohhhh. Ha ha!" It's not funny, though, he TOTALLY BETRAYED THEM like a TRAITOR. Until the end.
     "...'m... not shure if ya notice it the way I can... 'n do." He says, lying there like a rug, but whether he is also lying like a rug, it is up for the reader to detangle the disambiguation. "Thish land... everyone'sh sho shad. Afraid. Glum. Deshperate..."
     Sure, it's happy here, but the moment they step out the air will grow more sedate yet.
     "...it'sh the firsht time I'd ever really sheen the people of thish place... happy. Really happy. They were havin' fun... fer real. I kinda got caught up in that... ahhh. Shorry~"
     Doesn't make him any less of a traitorpants, though.