2019-11-10: Snatched From the Claws

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======================<* Valeria Chateau - First Floor *>=======================

The first floor above ground level in Valeria Chateau is currently used to house the members of ARMS. The central hallway has many rooms branching off of it, each comfortable with more than enough space for sleep and work both for each member of ARMS. At the far end is a balcony overlooking the ground floor on the side leading to the coutyard corridor; closer of course is the central elevator.

The wolf-like insignia of House Valeria is in place regularly, as are statues of presumably honored ancestors. Additionally, there is a small clinic staffed by slightly unsettling nurses who apparently specialize above all in injectios, and a plush if not luxurious eatery. Often, Lady Altecia Valeria helps here with her skill in the culinary arts, and for a cafeteria it's quite comfortable.

BGM: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RBxWlVGd9zE
<Pose Tracker> Tio has posed.

    Valeria Chateau, headquarters of ARMS. The building that has grown increasingly crowded in recent months. It has been a week since the battle at Arastell.

    Laying inside a lab, on a table, is a small mechanical woman. She has remained unmoving since she was brought in. Diagnostics have revealed that some function still remains, but for much of that week, she has not stirred. There have been shifts watching over her, but until a few moments ago, they had yielded nothing.

    As of a few moments ago, there was movement. Her hands twitched, slightly, and her head began to move. It was slow, but it was a sign.

    Now, her eyes slowly open, flickering awake. They track around the room, before looking into the lights of the lab. She slowly sits up, and moves a hand to cover her eyes.

    She speaks slowly and haltingly, parts within her whirring to life. "...The light... is so... bright."

    She starts to look around the room, and see her new environs, and any who were waiting for her.

<Pose Tracker> Kamui has posed.

    Kamui has spent a good long number of shifts sitting by the lab at Tio's side, having clearly remembered her name and... a good whole lot of nothing else actually. But it's clear that the Reploid places some kind of great importance in the other robot -- who looks much more human than she herself does, with the extensive damage to her.

    There's a pause as she lulls her head and dozes off... then perks up as she hears a sound.

    She excitedly hops up and down as she exclaims, "Tio! Tio, you're awake!"

    She looks towards Eleanor and the others in the room with excitement, bounding as she jumps up again, holding her arm (and Buster) up. "Do you feel okay...?"

<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

Eleanor has spent fewer shifts--she's had to be out and about, taking care of matters back home as well as here, but thankfully, some of her paperwork she can simply bring here. She hasn't spoken yet about how things went in Klein...

But she's found the time to pull a couple of shifts--moth particularly right now. So, she looks up from some papers and--

"Oh!" she says, in her typical way, and a warm smiles spreads on her face as she watches Tio rise. "You're awake," she repeats, and then considers--she's thought about what to say...

"Welcome," Eleanor settles on. "You're among friends, I'd like to hope--and one worked very hard to help you. Any questions you have, we can answer once you catch your bearings, all right?"

She beams at Kamui.

<Pose Tracker> Clarissa Arwin has posed.

Clarissa hadn't made it to the battle in the depths of Arastell. Something had stopped her, even though Guts-Dozer had escorted the group there.



"Oh my gosh, it's adorable!" Clarissa titters as she pets the soft fluffy Carro perched in the grass in front of Guts-Dozer. "It's a good thing I stopped before we ran him over.... Aww, hello there, cutie! I'm so sorry we scared you.... Would you like a poff nut? Here you go... it's all yours! Eat up...."

There is a pause. A cloud floats by.

"Aaaaaaa," Clarissa squeals, "look, Felius, he's glowy!!"



Clarissa has been taking more than a few shifts watching over their visitor. It's the least she could do, after hearing about what happened. With Kamui asleep, though, she'd pulled out a book and taken to reading. It's a light novel about princesses.

The sound of motion stirs her from her book - and so does the sound of Kamui bouncing to life. With a widening of her eyes, Clarissa closes the book and reaches forward, moving to kneel beside Tio's bead.

"Please don't push yourself, miss," she urges, beginning to extend a hand, but stopping halfway there. "You're safe here, with friends...."

<Pose Tracker> Marivel Armitage has posed.

Marivel Armitage is naturally present. She takes certain things seriously and Valmar is one of those things. The Crimson Noble is putting tools away in the heart-emblazoned bag she wears around her waist. She whistles to herself as she puts away the inventory, glancing towards Tio only once the light fades. "Ah, Tio. You are awake." She smiles at Kamui's own excitement. "Well, well, well. I am astounded. To think that we could free someone who had been under Valmar's control for so long. I am impressed with ourselves, heh heh heh...!"

She pauses and then nods once to Tio. "Welcome to your first day of freedom. Take your time getting up."

She turns to start closing drawers and clean up from her work.

"We should probably test your logic engine first. When you are ready, please count to ten in sequential order."

She finishes her cleanup and scootches herself up on top of a counter to look at Tio, her legs kicking back and forth slowly.

<Pose Tracker> Acacia Saitani has posed.

    Acacia's had a lot to do on her return to Meria Boule - it's been a long time since she's put out an edition of her newspaper, after all, and she'd wanted to check that everything was as she'd left it, and put out some feelers as to the current state of Odessa. Not to mention looking after Minder and trying to catch any word of Yue. So she hadn't spent as much time at the Chateau keeping an eye on Tio as she'd like.

    But at the same time, she hadn't minded the idea of Kamui doing so. Rather the opposite, honestly - it's another piece in the overall puzzle of Kamui's past, and it's so rare to see the Reploid so insistent and earnest about something that she couldn't help but give in. ... besides, it's not like she's out to prevent her assistant from doing what she wants.

    She'd turned up today to deliver some lunch to Kamui, Eleanor and Clarissa, waving a bag of rolls in their direction as she walks through the door - just in time for her eyebrows to go up as it turns out that Tio is in the process of waking up. Rather than step forward like everyone else, she smirks quietly to herself, leaning against the wall with her arms crossed so as not to crowd the poor girl.

    Also, so that she can stuff a quarter of a ham sandwich into her mouth as her first piece of food of the day. With Kamui busy and Minder gone, someone's reverting to bad habits...

<Pose Tracker> Zhang Xiumei has posed.

Xiumei, for her part, hasn't been checking on Tio. She read the reports -- she knew she was here -- but she was easing back into things. There was some expectation from the Valeria Chateau support staff, after what happened before she left Spira, that she take it easy and rest. Claims that she was fine went only so far.

She didn't want to shock her if she was the only one there, when Tio awoke. But, she walks down the hallway, carrying a couple of books from the library -- and comes to a stop as she hears the commotion.

Her green eyes blink a few times, and then the purple-haired woman pokes her head in through the door. She glances about; briefly to Kamui, then to Eleanor and Clarissa, and then at Acacia. "Is she--" She spots the ham sandwich. "...um?"

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Clarine has posed.

Clarine couldn't help but be concerned about Tio's condition. She was important to Kamui, after all. And so, when she isn't out exploring, she has volunteered to help keep an eye on her.

It helps that she doesn't really have any...responsibilities to take care of or need for lunch breaks, as one of the Seraphim. She has a lot of free time on her hands.

At the moment, though...she's currently napping! Specifically, she's resting inside her vessel, which Kamui always keeps safely on hand.

But then, suddenly, Clarine hears a commotion, and it feels like she's bouncing up and down... and so, she emerges from her vessel to see what's happening, and lets out a gasp of surprise when she sees Tio sitting up!

She opens her mouth to speak...but, pauses and elects to keep silent for now. This is probably a lot for her to take in, and Clarine doesn't want to burden her with too much right after waking up.

She does, however, send Xiumei a polite smile and a nod of confirmation as she pokes her head through the door.

<Pose Tracker> Dash Caskett has posed.

Nearby the Chateau's exterior, there is an extra flying airship! This one of course poses zero threat to the location, as it has no weapons. It also is painted very bright colors and shaped like a sunfish. The Caskett family was in town, following up the events at a mysterious ruin. Surprise! It held evil as they often do, but at least they rescued someone from inside!

Professor Barrell has probably already begun rubbing elbows with the higher ups of ARMs. Being a renowned researcher and digger in his hayday, the wealth of knowledge of source he comes in contact with is no doubt helpful. Roll is... curiously absent. A shame! Dash wants to introduce her to some folks.

He finds himself at the headquarters today, trying to learn a bit about the company of heroes he has run into so many times.

Most surprisingly to everyone present is it isn't in armor.

Indeed, he is wearing some kind of shirt and cardigan, along with some jeans and worker's boots. If people didn't know it, he looks just like a human!

"I wonder how well they know the Digger's Guild..." he muses. Dash soon plans to take a Digger's Test for a lisence, and perhaps doing so can promote ARMs in some way...?

A loud commotion comes from a nearby room. Familiar voices. He turns and raises an eyebrow before following it.

Dash showing up in a room without a certain signature noise is probably strange to some. "Wh-What's going on?! Everything Okay? I'll--" The young man holds out a fist. He then slowly retracts it. "Oh, right."

No, it seems everything is well! That robot lady is stirring. "Oh..!"

<Pose Tracker> Ashley Winchester has posed.

Ashley has...

Actually, after the operation concluded, Ashley's not spent as much time at the Chateau as a member of ARMS might be expected to. Not that he hasn't been available necessarily, it's just that he's racked up a few vacation days since he got whisked away to Spira, and he's been making good use of them while simultaneously trying to engineer his work schedule so that he's 'on patrol' more often than not.

...On patrol where you ask?

On patrol in Meria-Boule, of course! Specifically, the city of Meria. What is he doing, spending so much time there? It's a mystery...

Though as he follows the others into Tio's room, he does appear to have brought several boxes of... donuts.

So many different kinds of donuts.

...So maybe this delicious mystery is... best left unsolved??

"Is everything alright...?" Ashley asks, peering at the gathered busybodies. "I saw that there was some kind of commotion and thought I should check it out. Uh. Is our... guest... showing signs of waking up...?"

<Pose Tracker> Ziara Tanir has posed.

Ziara has been in Tio's room before. Given she is a mechanic, it would almost be more surprising if she had never been.

She is not in Tio's room now. She is in one of the other nearby workshops, hunched over a work table and doing something complicated-looking with customized cartridges. Whatever it is involves a bullet-making kit and several exotic materials, one of which is a small container of multicoloured powder that she treats as if it might explode at any moment.

One person going past her workroom does not get her to look up. Two people does. By three she has pushed up her goggles to her forehead and is closing up the container of powder with a screwed-on, airtight lid so she can go see what all the noise is about, and by four she has figured out where people are going. She is no longer irritated about the disruption.

Zi opens the door to Tio's room and almost runs straight into a whole bunch of other people. She tries to slip further in so she can actually see what's going on, drawing her wings closer to her body to take up less room.

She is still holding a single completed shotgun shell because she forgot to put it down. Zi spins it in her fingers without thinking about it.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Nimue has posed.

Nimue has never read any report or looked at any object, because that's all for nerds. She *does*, however, have a pretty good intuitive sense for when stuff is happening in a space she's in -- so when she notices significant movement all in one direction in Valeria Chateau, well, she decides to go too.

Like Acacia, she has lunch; unlike Acacia, there's no obvious place it came from. Nimue is just here with a giant paper bag full of shredded cheese which she slowly moves from the bag to her mouth.

"Hey guys, what's going on in *this* room?" comes the question from the door, amid a distinctly full mouth. "Who's our Naptime Pal over here?"

<Pose Tracker> Brad Evans has posed.

Brad Evans, The Guy Who Knows How Every Machine Works For Some Reason, has not, actually, been heavily involved with the Tio recovery. He was not involved in the operation that brought a new asset to Valeria Chateau - 'unavailable,' his only reply.

He has since then mostly been whiling away the hours in his room, or occasionally helping ARMS' support team with lifting heavy objects and fine-tuning their vehicles. But he does finally appear now, as commotion starts up in Marivel's section of the Chateau. The big man has no trouble seeing over the crowd now peeking into the door, blinking owlishly at the sights inside.

"Seems to be working now," he says, in his usual low, dry tone.

<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

    Ida has been keeping a weather eye on Tio's situation. She's seen people successfully purified of Valmar's taint, but this case seems different--she has no proof, but she suspects the Claw fled its host rather than die with her. Only time will tell what long-term effects it might have on the android. As it so happens, her arrival coincides with Kamui's cheerful shouts and animated response. A brief detour is in order.

    "The patient is awake?" says Ida, as she strides into the room, following Ashley. Like him, she brought refreshments--in her case, a large tea tray bearing two tea pots, sugar, cream, and cups. She's seemingly recovered from the injuries that Neriah inflicted on her, but she's also wearing a long scarf, and it covers her entire neck.

    Ida sets the tea tray down, and turns to Tio. Stripped of the hideous mass of tissue, she looks... human. She doesn't even have any visible damage, like Kamui. "Tio," she says. That's the right name, good.

<Pose Tracker> Tio has posed.

    It's Kamui who gets Tio's attention first, the small automaton turning to the first sources of noise. She's still a bit slow to respond, but something sparks to life in her mind, and she utters a word. "...Sister?" She looks confused as she says it. She doesn't seem to entirely understand why that's the first word to come to mind. But as the first questions come up, she tries her best to answer them. The first being 'is she okay'. "My functions appear normal." She says, but pauses again. "Where am I? I do not remember."

    She looks to Eleanor, then to Clarissa. Confusion is still writ across her pale blue face, but she moves towards the edge of the table so she can sit up more easily. "Friends..." She says, seeming to be testing the word out. But then there's another f word, and she blinks. "Freedom? I do not understand." Fortunately, Marivel issues instructions and, she nods. "Confirming. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten." Well, her logic circuit seems to be fine at least.

    As Clarine emerges, Tio turns to look at her. She doesn't seem to register surprise so much, as she tries to identify new face. Dash and Ashley, starting to crowd at the door, boxes in tow. Ziara emerging to see what's going on, and Nimue just turning up and devouring cheese. There is another question. She closes her eyes and looks down. "...My unit ID is Tio." She responds to Nimue. Then the large and imposing figure of Brad registers on her scanners. Tio responds when her name is called, looking at Ida and seemingly staring at her, waiting for her to say more.

    After a few moments, she speaks again. "Unable to identify command unit." She shakes her head. She looks troubled by this, and looks at Kamui again, the only person she seems able to recognise. "I have no registered commands." She looks out at the crowd. "Please give me orders."

<Pose Tracker> Kamui has posed.

    Kamui watches a lot of people come in! There is Clarissa, who was with her and Eleanor... and a lot of other folks as well! In particular, she waves to Master (Acacia) as she comes in and tries to look cool but ruins it with a quarter of ham sandwich, because cool people (in her mind) eat sandwiches in triangles.

    And Xiumei too, who she hasn't seen since Macalania... "Xiumei..."

    She also hasn't seen much of Brad, pumping her hands as she waves to Ashley and Ida as well. It kind of looks like she's overstimulated right now. Dash has also arrived, asking what's going on and Nimue asks who she is...

    Marivel asks her to count to one to ten, and she does so. She looks really giddy right now.

    Then Tio calls out to her: ...Sister?

    Kamui pauses for a long moment, that excitement coming out of her as she looks dead-on and confused.

    "... Sister ...?"

    The big red gem at her chest starts blinking. She clutches it.

    "... I don't remember," she speaks at almost the same time as Tio. It's almost comical if it weren't kind of sad. "Um, you're in..." She squints again. "V Castle," because she doesn't remember Valeria Chateau's name.

    Unable to identify command unit. ... please give me orders.

    Kamui panics a little. Orders! "Um--!!" she flails. "Do a dance?? No, wait, don't!!"

<Pose Tracker> Acacia Saitani has posed.

    "Mff mf mff," Acacia helpfully explains to Xuimei, amusement in her eyes as she makes no attempt to be understandable, then wags the bag in her direction. There are at least plenty in there, if only because she's made an art out of being such a regular at Marina's that she can swing one or two extras from time to time. Thankfully she swallows shortly afterwards to translate: "Lunch?"

    Of course, as someone who lives damn near next to the bakery, and who is even halfway decent at investigating, Ashley isn't fooling her; there's an audible snort as the blue-haired man enters. "She's up. And being doted over by half of ARMS, I think," she snickers, though she can't help but let out a quiet sigh of relief herself, too.

    ... maybe she's getting a bit used to having to explain things. Is it the reporter background, she wonders, as she swivels towards Nimue - and Brad. "We found her in a ruin, stuck to a piece of Valmar," she says slowly and patiently, as if still catching up to everything that happened herself. "So we tore her out of it. Kamui knows her," she adds, and her voice makes it clear that this is more than enough as far as she's concerned.

    There's a note of surprise from her when Tio says 'sister'. Acacia is not exactly a trained scientist or a engineer when it comes to ancient technology, but she's learnt enough from Marivel's lessons on maintaining the Reploid that she's fairly sure the two of them have a slightly different makeup. On the other hand, she supposes she should take it as something encouraging - that the two of them reach for and recognize a bond between them, even if they don't remember it.

    She freezes at talk of 'orders', though, and winces hard. There are a lot of people here, and that means that the girl's probably going to be rather malleable. "Don't crowd her too much," she warns the open air in a quiet and not unkind tone as she pats Kamui on the head. "She's going to be seriously confused if everyone yells all at once."

<Pose Tracker> Clarissa Arwin has posed.

"Ah, yes, I think she is," Clarissa says with a small smile for Xiumei.

Clarissa, at least, is likely an unfamiliar face to Tio. When she turns her gaze back to the little automaton, smiling gently back at her and resting her hands on her thighs. "You're in a safe place. The people here freed you from the bad folks who'd been holding you," she explains gently.

But it doesn't seem to register. Blinking quickly, Clarissa opens her mouth slightly, then closes it again, pressing her lips together. She looks back over her shoulder, to where Felius has slipped into the room to stand unobtrusively at the very back of the gathering, expression as opaque as it always is.

"...I'm not sure what to do," she murmurs honestly, soft rosy colour beginning to glow across her cheeks as she hangs her head. Ordering Tio around seems wrong to her. She's hardly some kind of princess, after all.

    'do a dance'

"Kamui," Clarissa gasps. "That's not a good way to wake up!!"

<Pose Tracker> Marivel Armitage has posed.

Marivel waves a hand towards Nimue. "Well for the moment we're calling her 'Tio' after her unit model. Glad to see you made it to Aquvy, Nims. I'll be happy to show you around sometime if you've got the interest."

Her gaze shifts towards Acacia's ham sandwich. She watches just long enough so Acacia knows she saw it before her gaze shifts to Xiumei. "Welcome back, Xiumei." She doesn't ask about her well being just yet because the last thing she wants to do is overload Tio. She's probably got enough on her mind right now.

Dash's ship isn't harssed. Indeed, his entire crew has been treated as being 'expected' even though they didn't get an invitation. How very strange. Nevertheless, Marivel nods once to Dash. Again, she has business with this guy but doesn't bring it up right now to avoid overloading Tio. Judging from what Kamui's excitement invited, Tio is probably already having to deal with a lot. Her gaze strays over the donuts but Marivel, unlike other vampires, is capable of restraint but she does look hungrier...

"Why did you bring that with you, Ziara?" Marivel asks of the shotgun shell because, okay, it kind of caught her off guard.

She focuses on Tio. Judging from her analysis, she is missing some memories--probably to be expected when you're being hijacked by a biohazardous claw.

"Tio it is then." Marivel says. She doesn't seem surprised to hear the request for orders. Tios weren't built by somene like Dr. Lumen whose foolishness was actually someething to admire...but there is a raised eyebrow as well--Tio used the term 'Sister'. That is unusual.

She would've definitely killed the hell out of Tio if it hadn't been for Kamui's words and empathy. Tio should not be looking to her for a future.

She considers Acacia since that's her natural first thought but a flashback of all the times Acacia complained to her rolls in her head and she supposes she ought to not add to her burdens. That leaves...

"We should avoid crowding her is correct both physically and otherwise." Likely referring to ideas on how to be and what sort of person to be. Everybody has their own view. Tio will have enough trouble starting with one. "Eleanor."

She smiles at the elf. "Would you mind lending Tio hand?"

She then enters her own thoughts. Sister, huh.

Kamui. She just makes family wherever she goes. She admires that about her.

<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

Eleanor smiles at the new arrivals, but keeps her focus for the moment mainly on Tio, which is for the best, because no one is ready to see someone just munching on a bag of shreddar. ...Xiumei though gets a wave as well as a smile, a happy little one and a gesture twoards the awake TiO! But now--

"Ah, sisters!" Eleanor notices between the two, seemingly cheerful about it. She doesn't understand freedom, it seems.... But her mind seems to be sound according to Marivel's tests. And she asks--

Eleanor tilts her head, and looks over her face--before Kamui talks. "Kamui," she says, and laughs faintly, shaking her head. "You can dance if you want to," Eleanor says.

She considers Marivel's answer--and quickly, makes it her own responsibility, nodding once and focusing on Tio.

"Very well, Tio. Your orders are to think about what you want." A beat, as she rights her expression, "Freedom means that you have the opportunity to choose your own goals. ...But you don't have to figure that all out at once." Eleanor rises, then, to offer Tio a hand to stand, if she wishes, and maybe move to a chair. It may be uncomfortable on the table.

"It's going to be all right."

<Pose Tracker> Zhang Xiumei has posed.

"Ah--right," Xiumei says to Acacia. "It looks... good?"

Her nose wrinkles. Then, she glances sideways when she hears Nimue speak. "This is... Tio?" Xiumei says to the other Seraph; she stands just ahead of her, being in the door. "I think she was being used by a sorceress--ah--I'm a little unsure on all of the details. She is... also a robot?"

She refers to Kamui, as the other robot.

She quiets down, though, as Tio speaks. She realizes something: she is much more robotic than Kamui acts. She wonders, for a moment, about how it would have been to meet Varius.

He seems to think the same, as he speaks to only her: <<I've never met her. After my time. But... the way she's asking for orders...>>

"...mm," Xiumei murmurs. "Miss Saitani is right."

She glances at Eleanor -- blinks once at the orders -- and then smiles. She folds her arms, and looks pleased with that response.

<Pose Tracker> Ashley Winchester has posed.

It is pretty hard to disguise the fact that you've been spending most of the past few weeks stress-baking (or rather, baking to destress) when one of your coworkers lives basically next door to the place where you do all of said baking.

Ashley shares a meaningful, conspiratorial look with Acacia, who has probably seen him wrestling with ovens full of bread several times in the past few weeks or so. But he, too, has to breath a relieved sigh as he realizes what all the commotion is actually about. "That's... That's good. It'd have been hard for everyone if we came out of that chaos without her. I'm glad she's alright, but-- uh."


Kamui don't tell your sister to dance. That's an awful idea. Not only would it possibly kill one of them if she misinterprets that order, but also she just woke up. "Ahahaha, well, if the two of you are sisters, then..."

Ashley sets down his boxes and prises open the one on top-- and offers a selection of delicious treats to the convalescing reploid. "Here! On the house. I made plenty for everyone. If you're anything like Kamui, I know that mornings are probably a bit rough without something sweet to start the day off right."

He glances at the others, then. "You're all free to have some too. Like I said, I made plenty."

<Pose Tracker> Ziara Tanir has posed.

Ziara finally does manage to squeeze to one side. She takes up a lot of room for a girl her height. She also only recognizes about two thirds of the people in this room, which is more than she expected and less than she hoped for.

She also hesitates a moment when she accidentally brushes Nimue with her wing. Ziara squints. It seems like she's having trouble seeing her, but she knows there is something there... She eventually nods, more to herself than anyone else.

Turning back to Tio, Zi lets someone else give orders. Instead, she asks: "Is this the first time she's been up?" It's addressed more to Marivel than anyone else. "I came in near the beginning in case there was something for me to fix, but there really wasn't. Beyond that, I hadn't seen her since... that whole... thing."

She looks down at her hand where she's still spinning the shell. "Oh. This. I was working on these before I came here - um, into the room, I mean. It's experimental but it seems to work. Want it?" She makes as if to toss the shell to Marivel, gently and underhand. (Zi this is not how you treat bullets)

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Clarine has posed.

Nimue also gets a smile of greeting from Clarine, but she doesn't say anything just yet - she's keeping quiet at the moment.

And then, Tio speaks.

'Sister'. Clarine looks between Kamui and Tio. A subconscious memory? Clarine's head tilts curiously as she tries to puzzle through this. But, Tio seems alright, at least, even if she doesn't seem to remember anything. That's good, at least.

"Yes...please be quiet and try to give her some space." Clarine agrees with a nod as Acacia says not to crowd her. It seems others agree, as well.

Clarine's head tilts curiously as Tio says to give her orders. She frowns a little, at that...but then, at Marivel's insistence, Eleanor gives her an order.

Clarine considers this for a moment, and gives a subtly-approving smile.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Nimue has posed.

"Uhhhh... hi, Tio," Nimue says, giving one of those awkward little multi-finger waves. A couple of shreds of cheese fall from between her fingers. She does not make a Five Second Rule attempt, because as a Seraph she is not subject to the laws of time and space.

Well, that, and because after a few moments her whole demeanor changes. Tio makes what is, to Tio, probably a very reasonable request; Nimue does not -- quite -- take it that way. Her expression turns to something not-quite-revulsed, lips pulling back a bit but eyes scrunching up in sympathy. She forgets to answer Marivel at this point; instead, she just watches. There's a little bit of caution in the way she regards everyone else in the room, suddenly; her shoulders are just a little tight -- tight enough that she flinches at Zi brushing against her.

Then Eleanor actually speaks. Nimue listens very closely. She gives Eleanor space enough to help Tio move, for precisely that long.

The instant Eleanor's body isn't otherwise engaged and doesn't look like it's going to be, Nimue hugs her fiercely from behind with precisely zero warning. It's tight enough to probably be a little uncomfortable.

<Pose Tracker> Dash Caskett has posed.

It is good to see the firefight didn't damage her as badly as he had thought. Or perhaps she has a similar repair function as himself. He doesn't even ask how it works.

Surprisingly, most folks he knows from on Spira arrive! Brad in particular gets a cool wave for a cool customer. Afterward, he thrusts his hands in his pockets, to make sure he doesn't touch anything. Dash has the problem of picking up and looking at things, and it already gets him in trouble with certain members of the family.

And he was a guest here. He had to make a good impression! "Tio... huh? Well, nice to meet you! I'm Dash. Whatever that thing was that was affecting you is gone now! You don't have to worry about it any more."

For commands, he looks to everyone else around here. He is definitely not going to be the one to say something.

A hand does come out of a pocket to hold over his mouth at Kamui's order, however. "I think that is a great order," Dash comments afterward with a smile and nod. "Wait, is this how robot siblings come together?"


<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

    'Unable to identify command unit. I have no registered commands. Please give me orders.'

    Ida folds her arms, and looks over to Kamui. "Kamui," she says, a thoughtful frown crossing her face. "I think we'd best exercise caution. Your sister recognizes you, but to her, the rest of us are unknowns." Wariness edges into her voice. "If she was constructed with security protocols, then--"

    Then Eleanor issues orders. Ida turns to the Crest Sorceress, momentarily alarmed. A moment passes. Tio does not go berserk, nor does she attempt to vaporize Eleanor with previously-unseen death lasers. Ida relaxes, visibly. "Right. Perhaps introductions are in order? I brought tea to go with Ashley's desserts. Would anyone like some?" When in doubt, fall back on tea to defuse potential awkwardness.

<Pose Tracker> Brad Evans has posed.

Brad is noticed, and gives his usual grunts of acknowledgement as he is greeted. "Piece of Valmar," he mutters. What a concept - not the strangest he's encountered by a league, but still a strange thought, particularly to think something was attached to it that way. He opens his mouth as if to question further, then uses his amazing engineering brain to read the room and settles his posture back, hands finding their way to his jeans and resting. "Requires orders...?" he adds. "Reminds me of a Reaverbot."

The words are barely out of his mouth before he flinches and grimaces, but there's not much for it at this point, other than a grunt of acknowledgement to Ida's urging for caution. Always treat an unknown machine like its last orders were to kill everyone it can see. That's just sound Digging practice.

<Pose Tracker> Tio has posed.

    Tio has no idea why requesting orders would make people uncomfortable. That's just not a thought that goes through her mind. That's just what she's meant to do. "Understood, sister." She says, and starts to get off the bench, but the order is countermanded immediately. Tio looks confused again, and moreso when there is a concerted effort to NOT give her orders. She looks from Kamui, to Acacia, to Clarissa, to Marivel. And then finally Eleanor speeks up and Tio watches her. "...I do not understand." Well. That's not the response you might have been hoping for. Still, she takes Eleanor's hand as she is helped off the table, and allows herself to be guided. But her eyes remain locked on Eleanor for the moment.

    At least until Ashley proffers donuts. She looks up at him. "My functions can be maintained without the intake of foreign materials. Do not concern yourself with my well-being, please."

    She acknowledges Nimue's awkward wave, by turning to face her, but it's not much of a reaction. But she does nod at Ida. "I concur. To achieve superiority in combat, adequate infomration must be gathered and processed." She pauses, waiting for others to speak.

    And then Nimue leaps at Eleanor from behind, and Tio stands up with a start. She reaches for the chakrams at her belt, their outer edges glowing red. "Master!"

<Pose Tracker> Kamui has posed.

    Kamui is berated! A dance is not a good way to recover, and she agrees! There's an awawa going Clarissa's way as Acacia chides her that she shouldn't crowd her, and gets her a pat on the head.

    Xiumei asks if she's a robot. She nods. "She is! I don't know what kind, though, if you're asking..." Come to think of it, she doesn't remember if Tio is a Reploid or not. Marivel called her a 'Tio class automaton', but it makes her think--

    Is she a Kamui class automaton?

    Ashley offers treats, and she just about starts up as--

    Wait, some of the treats from Ashley's box is gone.

    Kamui's face is stuffed and round at about the same time this muistery happens. Gob gob gob gob. "Mmm..."

    Brad mentions that her desire for orders reminds her of a Reaverbot. "Sheff differenf from Feaffferboff--"

    You can see her chewing getting set to 2x speed gobgobgobgob. Maybe she's not so different from Nimue. She also looks to Ziara, who she dimly remembers from the chaos from the Arestill Catacombs. "Oh, hello! I'm Kamui!!" she speaks with crumbs in her mouf.

    But... then Eleanor speaks wise words.

    Your orders are to think about what you want.

    She pauses for a moment, and it makes her more introspective. She doesn't disagree, however. She looks towards Tio as she suddenly stands and reaches for the chakrams! "W-wah! It's okay! It's okay!"

    Assuming that Tio doesn't go full chakram, though... she looks to Marivel.

    "Did I ask for orders too, a long long time ago, mom?"

<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

It's fine. It's all fine, in fact. Eleanor doesn't look worried at all about horrible consequences, has no terrible feelings about dangerous robots probably because this is Eleanor's level of caution:

Eleanor's laughing and smile portrait appears. 'Danger! This is fun!'

But here, with Tio, outside the tutorial... Eleanor watches Tio's response, and she says she doesn't understand. "That's all right," Eleanor assures her. "I don't expect you to yet."

She glances to Ashley--"Oh, you... you brought snacks...!"

Eleanor is fully prepared to lavish her love on snacks. However--

Suddenly Eleanor is hugged! She blinks in surprise, yellow-golden eyes widening before she realizes from the size, the... breathing? The arms at her front--that it must be Nimue, and her surprise melts casually into ease--

Right up until Tio goes for her chakrams. She immediately understands who 'Master' is and can think about that after she--

"Tio! It's all right! I'm safe, she's my friend!"

She pauses, and then softens her expression from alarm and 'forced calm' to something gentler. "...Don't worry. Like I said, it's okay if you understand it all. Just rely on me for a while, all right? I'll take care of you."

<Pose Tracker> Clarissa Arwin has posed.

Clarissa blinks a couple of times as Eleanor steps in to start issuing orders. At least someone feels comfortable doing it!

Instead, Clarissa herself withdraws to give Tio and Eleanor a bit of space. She ends up beside Ziara, offering her a gentle smile. "Hi... my name's Clarissa," she says, her voice quiet enough not to intrude much on the chat going on around them. "I'm sorry for not introducing myself before now...."

But Tio doesn't understand. With a cant of her head, Clarissa looks back to the little blue robot and smiles gently. "Eleanor is a very kind person, Tio. I don't think she wants to force you to be something you don't want to be. Everyone has dreams... what do you dream about?"

Do robots dream?

They reach for chakrams, at least. Gasping, Clarissa holds both hands out. "Nooo, Tio, it's okay!" she exclaims. "That's called a hug! Hugs are very good and so are Nimues!"

<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

It's fine. It's all fine, in fact. Eleanor doesn't look worried at all about horrible consequences, has no terrible feelings about dangerous robots probably because this is Eleanor's level of caution:

Eleanor's laughing and smile portrait appears. 'Danger! This is fun!'

But here, with Tio, outside the tutorial... Eleanor watches Tio's response, and she says she doesn't understand. "That's all right," Eleanor assures her. "I don't expect you to yet."

She glances to Ashley--"Oh, you... you brought snacks...!"

Eleanor is fully prepared to lavish her love on snacks. However--

Suddenly Eleanor is hugged! She blinks in surprise, yellow-golden eyes widening before she realizes from the size, the... breathing? The arms at her front--that it must be Nimue, and her surprise melts casually into ease--

Right up until Tio goes for her chakrams. She immediately understands who 'Master' is and can think about that after she--

"Tio! It's all right! I'm safe, she's my friend!" Pause. "...Thank you for your viglance," she adds, after a moment, not wanting to hurt her feelings.

<Pose Tracker> Acacia Saitani has posed.

    You can't shame Acacia out of her illicit ham sandwiches, Marivel! Not even Kamui's managed to stop her from eating on her feet, stomachaches be damned! But at least she has the decorum to wipe her mouth on a napkin, then tuck it away into one of her pockets.

    She does have kind of a tendency to grouse, it's true - but at the same time there's a core of responsibility to Acacia's habits that she can't seem to give up. In the moments before Marivel suggests Eleanor look after Tio, she's already finding herself turning her head and opening her mouth, ready to volunteer for the position - but she obviously doesn't disapprove of the Crimson Noble's choice either, letting out a satisfied huff as she watches the young noble fuss over the new member of ARMS.

    There's a slight suspicion in the back of her mind that orders like those might be a bit too... high-level for Tio to handle right now. But any objection is stolen away when she gets called 'Miss Saitani' and immediately scrunches her face up. "'Aki' is fine, jeez. Here," she adds, pushing the bag in her direction. "Best breakfast roll in Aquvy, and unlike Ashley's pick it won't kill you with sugar." (Months away and he goes stress-baking, of all things. She's beginning to feel sorry for Marina.)

    With Eleanor looking after Tio and Kamui flitting around her, it's easy for her to hang back - and her fingers stray towards the camera tucked in her pocket before she thinks better of taking a commemorative shot. Startling the newcomer is probably a bad idea, so instead she just hums as she watches Nimue crash into Eleanor, steals a surreptitious glance in Clarine's direction to gauge her response as well, and quietly composes the article in her head: 'ARMS prevent Valmar Menace' seems a little hokey, but perhaps it's time to start blowing their own trumpet a little.

    An instinctive wariness is what makes her not jolt forwards at the perceived attack. Escalating seems like a really bad plan right now, so she prefers to freeze in place, trusting Eleanor to straighten out the confusion. At least Tio is only readying for battle, rather than going outright into it. "... you nearly did when I woke you up," she adds to Kamui, though she has to wonder if that was as much her own confusion at the time as it was Kamui just waking up.

<Pose Tracker> Zhang Xiumei has posed.

<I see why you like her.> Varius's voice rumbles in Xiumei's mind as she watches Nimue hug Eleanor from behind. Xiumei flushes, then pushes her glasses up by the bridge with her finger. The light glints off them when she does.

She tilts her head at Kamui. "I wasn't sure. Varius says... he doesn't recognize her."

Her eyes drift down for a second, in thought, at that. then her eyes widen sharply as Tio reaches for her weapons. Xiumei stands up straighter, and reaches a hand out.

"Tio, wait! It's fine!" she calls out, nervously. "Nimue is just--um--just... hugging... her. Clarissa is right, okay?" She looks at Nimue, then tilts her head, and mouths: 'You okay?'

<Pose Tracker> Ziara Tanir has posed.

"I'm Ziara Tanir," Ziara says to Kamui, when she's given a name. Though she seems just fine with investigating Kamui too. The mechanical parts, the armour plates... "Call me Ziara, or Zi, everyone does. Hi! I'm a mechanic around here." She gives the same nod to Clarissa, sticking out one hand.

Ziara looks at Tio again, this time more thoughtfully. She didn't fight the Claws, but it was pretty much impossible to miss them. She's having a bit of trouble linking the big, scary monster with this...

Well, kind of passive robot. Maybe a soul-eating demon can't eat your soul if you don't have one, Ziara thinks - then feels vaguely guilty for that thought.

"Oh, hey, donut," is what she actually says. She thinks she could be Ashley's friend now. Ziara sidles around until she can help herself, having forgotten to eat anything while she was working. She filches one with a thankful nod to Ashley, takes a big bite -

"Mph!" Tio has suddenly turned into an ATTACK ROBOT and Ziara's hands are full. She attempts to juggle half a donut, holding it in her teeth while one hand reaches for the holster at her hip. She doesn't *draw*, thankfully, but she definitely has it at hand.

Ziara asks "Mph?" again when it looks like everyone else making a good attempt at talking Tio down.

<Pose Tracker> Marivel Armitage has posed.

Marivel considers Nimue. She smiles upon seeing the Seraph hug Eleanor. It might seem a bit strange for Marivel who often seems so confident, but at this time, and in this moment, it's quite a relief to see Nimue react in such a way.

It tells her that she made the right choice. And that Eleanor, too, made the right choice. If anyone could judge their handling of Tio, it would be Nimue. This was not a planned test on Marivel's part, but it does work out well doesn't it? It sure does. She doesn't weaken the moment with a 'well done'.

"Sure I'll take a look at it." Marivel adds to Ziara because every single ARMSmeister is weird. She catches the shell casing and studies its craftmanship.

"Since the event," Marivel tells Ziara absently. "Yes. It seems to me like she'll never be alone no matter where she goes now," She chuckles a bit before looking back to Ziara. "Well, it's good to see you. We should talk more in less busy settings. I appreciated the second pair of eyes." Brad says something that draws her attention. "Well, I wouldn't say they're comparable, but the misconception that mechanical people ought be slaves is sadly pretty severe across Filgaia. They are, of course, meant to be our friends." It is a line of thinking not unlike Dean's own regarding golems being friends but that might be why they get along so well. "It's important to love your children after all."

Ida offers tea to go with Ashley's donuts. "Okay, you got me. I'm down. Tea and donuts for everybody. I think we've earned it."

"That's right. Nimue was thanking Eleanor." Marivel explains. "She meant no harm. Quite the opposite, really."

She smiles at Acacia, seemingly unworried by the weapons but, then again, it's not like she is in danger. "Seems like it's going to be busy here for a while, no?"

<Pose Tracker> Marivel Armitage has posed.

Marivel Armitage also, strangely enough, has a donut in her hand that she obtained when everybody else was freaking out about Tio mauling Nimue.

<Pose Tracker> Ziara Tanir has posed.

The shotgun shell Ziara passed to Marivel has a custom load and looks hand-forged. Intact, it's hard to tell exactly what it's loaded *with* beyond the fact that it's got shot in there rather than a single solid slug, but someone (Ziara) has painted a bright cyan stripe on its side, presumably so it is clearly identifiable when mixed in with other shells.

[OOC] Ziara Tanir says, "ugh, blue-ray, apparently it ate my second paragraph"
<Pose Tracker> Ziara Tanir has posed.

The shotgun shell Ziara passed to Marivel has a custom load and looks hand-forged. Intact, it's hard to tell exactly what it's loaded *with* beyond the fact that it's got shot in there rather than a single solid slug, but someone (Ziara) has painted a bright cyan stripe on its side, presumably so it is clearly identifiable when mixed in with other shells.

The contents of the shell, however, are faintly magically active. Not enough that it's a sorcerous shell, but enough that some kind of magic material was probably used inside it somewhere. Huh.

[OOC] Ziara Tanir says, "there's the blu-ray"
<Pose Tracker> Seraph Clarine has posed.

Ida suggests introductions, and Clarine nods.

"I am Clarine... I am a friend of Kamui's, and everyone here. And I would hope to be yours as well, in time..." Clarine says to Tio with a polite bow of her head.

Nimue hugs Eleanor - but then, in response to this, Tio stands up quickly. Understandably, people are worried about this.

"Y-yes, Nimues are very good!" Clarine agrees, chiming in with Clarissa. She nods toward Tio, clasping her hands in front of her. "Please do not be alarmed... This is a safe place. No one here means anyone else harm."

She looks toward Nimue, then.

"Nimue, are you okay...?" Clarine asks. Tio didn't actually attack, so things were probably be okay...but she wouldn't be Clarine if she didn't fuss over her friends.

Meanwhile, Clarine...does not acquire donut or tea, but this is probably expected - they're probably all aware by now how particular she is about what kind of foods she eats, and when.

<Pose Tracker> Brad Evans has posed.

Kamui crumbily assures Brad Tio is not the same as a Reaverbot very soon before Tio interprets a hug attempt as a violent act. He gives ARMS' resident and-now-specifically-senior automaton an arched eyebrow for a moment but seems content to leave it at that.

This is about as close to sass as anyone has ever seen from Brad.

His response to Marivel is more attentive, and his eyes turn down somewhat, thoughtful. "Friends, huh," he murmurs. "Maybe so."

Brad picks the weirdest topics to be a romantic about, sometimes.

<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

    Tio looks right at Nimue. Ida looks between the Seraph and the automaton, brow furrowed. She plucks the teapot off the tray and pours Marivel a cup, taking advantage of the lull in tension. The activity is familiar, comforting. "An artificial person who behaves like a machine," she says, as she hands the cup to Marivel. "But with resonance. Unit Tio, do you--"

    Of course Tio can see something, because she immediately seems to interpret Nimue as an aggressor. Ida whirls towards the trio, biometal pouring from her skin and hardening into exoskeletal gauntlets. She barely notices she's doing it.

<Pose Tracker> Ashley Winchester has posed.

    "If you must know," Ashley huffs at Acacia's RUDE DISMISSAL of his delicious donuts. "I try to minimize the sugar I use by making the dough a little saltier. That way the sugar that does get used in the glaze has something to contrast itself against, and that makes it taste sweeter even without filling you up with sugar! Nutrition is important, Aki!"

But more than that--

Tio, also, denies the baker his dues. Even as Kamui stuffs her face and the others filch bits and pieces from his assemblage of pastries, Ashley is regarding the gynoid herself with a knowing smile. "It's not about needing fuel for the body, Tio. Eating delicious food with the people who care about you is fuel for the heart and the soul. It's a chef's pride and joy to see other people smile when they eat the food he prepares...!"

Oh. Wait, why is Tio going FULL BATTLE MODE!?

Ashley looks between the automaton and Eleanor and then from Nimue to the automaton, and then says: "Tio... Do you not know what a hug is?"

Could anything BE more sad!?

<Pose Tracker> Dash Caskett has posed.

So it seems it is true! Robot sisters connect so easily! Fascinating. Does that go for brothers?

Something twinges inside. It garners an odd look down to his cardigan. "Brad is kinda right, but she is far more advanced than them! You sure? Maybe the fight jostled something around in her head." Was about the best guess he can give. He's not the genius in the family.

He is in last place in the Caskett family for that one. He even feels like he is behind the monkey somehow in that race.

"Whoah hold up, easy o nthe weapons Tio!" Dash says, holding his hands out and waving them. "She is just playing around! No one is attacking anyone!"

...Did Kamui just eat something?

"Anyway," Dash says, looking back toward Tio (And just a bit more concern for Kamui is present now) "My name is Dash! I am like you and Kamui! Just uh, not equipped right now. It is good to meet you! Eleanor is a very nice person." A look toward Eleanor. "Seems like you are akin to Acacia and Kamui, now! I be you will make a great team."

Dash didn't pilfer around much after the fight like a normal dig. Felt wrong in that place. He does ask Marival something, however. "Any kind of effects or belongings found beyond i nthere that may be Tio's Maybe it could help her get re-acquainted with everything.

It was a long shot, couldn't hurt to ask.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Nimue has posed.

It takes Nimue a second to realize she was very briefly in extreme danger! ... She doesn't quite let go, though she does at least pull her face out of Eleanor's back a little and straighten up a bit. Marivel gets to speak first.

"Uh -- yeah. Hi. Things. Things are fine! Really! No murders here," Nimue says, a little bit awkwardly. "I just -- uh. I had a feeling." She pulls away at this point, taking a moment to stabilize herself.

Eventually, she looks at Tio with a smile. "... Don't worry about me! Just, uh. Focus on you. And doing your... you... things. You've got a crazy road ahead of you and I hope it goes way better than mine!"

<Pose Tracker> Tio has posed.

    Tio does not attack immediately, and as others quickly intercede. Even her Master says to stand down, and, with some cautious reluctance, does. Her eyes track to Nimue, but she nods. "Understood." The chakrams go back on her belt, hanging next to the mana egg. Nimue, at least, gets designated as 'not an immediate threat', then. "My apologies." She says, seemingly meaning it.

    The immediate danger passed, she turns to Clarissa. "...What is a dream?" And then the second question. "What is a hug?" That's a real depressing one-two punch right there. She tilts her head to one side to look at Clarissa, seemingly requiring explanation.

    Her eyes track to Ida, watching the metal flow over her skin. She doesn't draw again- she's supposed to be among friends, and friends, according to Master, are safe.

    She nods at introductions. Dash. Ziara. Clarissa. Nimue. Clarine. She adds the name she hears and then she turns to Ashley. "I am an automaton. I do not possess a heart." She doesn't even try to grasp the concept of a soul at this point.

<Pose Tracker> Kamui has posed.

    Brad gives her some raised eyebrows after Tio nearly flips out, and she pouts at him and goes, "She's just confused. Besides, she doesn't make that one noise all Reaverbots do, you know, the--"


    Which probably gives most Aquvy Diggers in this very room a minor heart attack, good job Kamui!! And either speaks ill of her nature. Or her skill as a Michael Winslow-like SFX mime.

    Ziara gives her name in turn, and she excitedly waves back with a, "Hi Zi!! What a fun name! I like your wings," she adds, also totally unaware that the engineering lady wants to secretly scuttle her for Secrets.

    She looks a bit alarmed at Dash though, leaning closer to whisper, "Is it okay? I know it's sensitive." She nods though, encouraging to Tio as Clarine also chime in, "Clarine and Eleanor are really really nice. You can trust them to guide you, Tio..."

    Acacia and Ashley sass at each other for a moment, and she looks confused, and offers the most insightful quote that really explains everything about her:

    "What's wrong with eating pure sugar, Master?"

    Tio asks what dreams and hugs are. As if proving the very last thing she says, she starts intensifying as if asking for Eleanor or anyone for Permission to Hug.


<Pose Tracker> Marivel Armitage has posed.

Marivel blinks and looks towards Brad. "Is ... everything alright, Brad?"

It isn't like Brad doesn't say these things from time to time but it's the way that his eyes turn downward that makes her feel compelledd to say something.

She takes a cup of tea and says, "Thank you," to Ida because she really needs to complete her whole aesthetic here and Ida is being a great help. She hands the shell back to Ziara with an approving nod.

"Everything that seemed to belong to Tio, is with Tio." Marivel explains to Dash though lets be honest, it's entirely possible Marivel is lying. She treats Valmar seriously, not unlike a major biohazard, and on matters such as that she is safer rather than sorry. It's why her first instinct regarding Tio was to eliminate her, not to free her, but compassion won the day and Marivel isn't the slightest bit dour about that. But she is a person who is working hand in hand with Irving Valeria and part of her is worried even now by what may come for which they allowed to escape by focusing their efforts on recovering Tio. Worrying about those scales is the burden of her responsibilities. She's seen such reflection in Acacia from time to time as well.Perhaps she'll see it in Eleanor.

Marivel eats her donut and drinks her tea. She studies Nimue.

"You have a lovely heart, Nimue." Marivel says. "Did you know?"

She looks to Tio and adds, "Hm... Kamui could provide you an example of a hug if you'd like." Marivel's instinct is more to pinch Tio's cheeks.

She wonders what that says about her for a few moments before taking another donut brazenly right out in the open.

<Pose Tracker> Acacia Saitani has posed.

    Acacia steals a glance towards Marivel as well, because at heart she's one of those people who likes to watch other people, and perhaps that's something she has in common with the Crimson Noble. She's curious about people's reactions and interactions with Tio, comparing them to her own with Kamui; it's a definite reminder of how far she, Kamui, and Marivel have all come together.

    But the vampire smiles at her, and she can't resist a chuckle back. "Something like that. I get the feeling she might be a little slower than Kamui to pick some things up, but... well, we're pros at fussing over them, right? ... think she's okay?" she adds more privately, but the expression on Marivel's face is answer enough to that question.

    She looks glumly towards Ashley, because she's not quite immature enough to respond to the lecture by talking about how Marina probably has enough salt right now for the entire batch. She can save that when she yanks Marina out to go blow off some steam. "She's not gonna understand that right now," she huffs with a half-grin instead. "All you can do is offer some, and nudge her into it. Let her experience it, first."

    That part sounds suspiciously like the voice of experience, although... well, it's not like Kamui really needed that sort of prompting, in the end. But it marks the reporter trying to sober up as she plants a hand in her messy red hair to give it a scratch. "Ah, well-- as Dash says, my name's Acacia. I'm Kamui's Master, but more to the point we work on a newspaper together. She's my assistant. In charge of photos and tall places."

    Her expression hardens just a little when Tio claims not to have a heart, and she winces softly to herself once more. Definitely not Dr. Lumen-made, then. For all that her ancestor appears to have been deeply eccentric, Acacia's learnt enough about her to know that Marivel wouldn't put that much trust in her if she instilled a belief like that into her creations. She finds herself gravitating towards Kamui, letting out a breath as she leans on the Reploid's shoulder in something-- like a hug, at least. An invitation to one, perhaps.

    Then Marivel makes a suggestion and Acacia follows up on it, giving the quivering Reploid a push towards her sister.

<Pose Tracker> Clarissa Arwin has posed.

Blushing a little as she steadies herself from the Tio outburst, Clarissa looks back up to Ziara, taking her hand and shaking gently with a small smile. "That's a really cool job... if you'd like to do mechanical things, I'm sure our Gear would like to meet you. You saw Guts-Dozer, right?"

When Tio finally does stand down, Clarissa sends a gentle smile her way, clasping her hands together. The questions, though, take her aback.

"She may have less experience in the world than Kamui, Clarissa," Felius says quietly, his voice barely managing to carry, before Tio herself explains she's an automaton.

Swallowing lightly, Clarissa nods back to her brother before turning her gaze to Tio once more. "Ah... a hug is when you gently put your arms around someone you care about. It's a way to show them you're there for them! But you shouldn't hug everyone! Consent is important...."

She dips her eyes, then looks up to Tio once more with a small, shining smile. "...People - humans, crimson nobles, beastmen, elves, even robots - they often desire to accomplish things in life. A dream is something that you wish could be real. Something you strive for, even."

<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

"Oh, he doesn't?" Eleanor asks, because of course she's still listening to Xiumei. She immediately draws conclusions about this, and flashes a guilty look at no one in particular for a very brief instant.

Eleanor would love to comment on the nature of servitude and automatons but for the moment she is busy caring for one. The introductions come, and... "Ida," Eleanor says, in what almost might seem scolding, if gently. "She's all right. You don't have to worry."

She pauses, and then softens her expression to look at Tio again. "It's okay if you don't understand it all. Just rely on me for a while, all right?"

Ah--Ah, the way Ashley talks of his donuts...! Eleanor glances to him, giving him the 'please save me some' glance before she returns her attention to Tio properly. She gestures to Nimue, behind her, and says, "This is Nimue. She's a wonderful person."

"I can give you a lot of introductions, really--but first..." She considers, and then--"A dream... It has many meanings, as Clarissa says.. But a hug...I could tell you, but I think Kamui showing you may be best."

Doesn't have a 'heart'...

"Hearts, too. It's a metaphorical statement... we can talk about that, when you're ready to learn."

"This," Eleanor points out, "Is Xiumei, my very best friend."

"...I hope you can make friends of your own, in us. But you can take your time. I'll take care of you, all right? I promise."

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Clarine has posed.

'What is a hug'... That is indeed a very sad question.

"I...do not know if those are necessarily exclusive to each other. Kamui, too, is an automaton...and yet, she perhaps possesses more heart than anyone else I know." Clarine says with a smile. "Perhaps you simply still need time to find yours."

As Eleanor says, they can talk about that when Tio is ready. There was no need to rush - she should be allowed to take things at her own pace.

Explanations on hugs are given and Clarine nods exuberantly, feeling very passionate about the subject. And Clarissa explains what a dream is. Clarine nods at that, too - dreams are very important.

...But, did she have a dream of her own...?

She could worry about that later.

<Pose Tracker> Ziara Tanir has posed.

Ziara relaxes when Tio seems unlikely to attack. She lowers her hnd away from her shotgun and applies herself to finishing her donut instead so she can talk again. She still isn't sure what to make of Tio. Part of her is *really excited*. Another part... well, she's just not sure yet.

And Ziara would never scuttle Kamui!

Investigate, sure. Take advantage of her missing some exterior plating to shine a light in, definitely. (And Dash, too, when he says he's like Tio and Kamui, which she didn't know.) But scuttle? Who do you take her for??

Ziara can't tell if Kamui is making fun of her wings or not, so she decides to take it as honest. Kamui is so *earnest* that it's hard not to. "...Thanks, I think? I know they're pretty, ah, unusual around here." She isn't going to unfurl them, though. This is less embarrassment and more because they take up a *lot* of room and it's a pretty crowded room. Zi's wingspan is quite a bit wider than she is tall. "And pure sugar will rot your teeth and make you fat, that's why. ...maybe not your teeth."

She tucks the shell into a pocket of her outfit when Marivel hands it back. To Clarissa, she says, "Guts-Dozer? I saw it, but I haven't had an opportunity to do anything with it. ...could I?" You can practically see the stars in her eyes.

<Pose Tracker> Ashley Winchester has posed.

Marina Irington is quite possibly the most long-suffering woman this side of Filgaia.

Woe betide us all if she ever is gifted with phenomenal cosmic power by one of the many sources of phenomenal cosmic power that float around the world searching for young and emotionally complicated individuals to grant said phenomenal cosmic power unto in the hopes of spreading chaos.

Marina would probably take said power, use it to slap the capricious god who provided it to her across the mouth, and then do unspeakable things to Ashley Winchester as she goes mad with power.

(Such as asking him increasingly more direct Questions.)

Ashley's frown deepens as Tio provides the absolute saddest answers possible. Not knowing about hugs? Or dreams!? Maybe... maybe she really doesn't have a heart.

Or maybe it's just something that they need to help her find, first...!

"I know," he sighs Acacia-ward. "You can lead a horse to water, right? Or I guess, in this case, an automaton to donuts." Delicious, delicious donuts.

People are introducing themselves. Ashley suddenly realizes that he hasn't actually done that yet! "Oh! Uh. Right, I'm Ashley Winchester," he says, bowing his head slightly, "Pleased to meet you, miss Tio! I hope we can help you find a heart and a dream to call your own. It'd be a shame to go on without either one."

Ashley gives Kamui a look and sloooowly slides one step to the side, just in case she explodes into a sudden fit of hugging. Not that he's not okay with that, just-- he's holding a box of donuts, still. That could get messy.

Eleanor gets a look-- and a nod. Don't worry, he's got your back, miss Eleanor...!

<Pose Tracker> Brad Evans has posed.

"Fine," Brad replies quickly to Marivel, straightening. "Just reminded me of some things."

And then Kamui replies and he's following her right up until she makes THAT NOISE and he starts, eyes wide. "That was ....credible," he says, a little lamely. It shook him enough he almost misses Tio's questions, but that makes him...

....actually mostly just look at her, a hand coming up to his chin thoughtfully. "Vocabulary could've been damaged, maybe," he offers. He can't help it, sometimes; Brad's an engineer, and he thinks of automatons as machines when it comes to considering their problems. Still, he puts his own hand up. "Brad," he says, by way of introduction.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Nimue has posed.

Nimue lets other people focus on actually helping Tio understand the world around her; that kind of thing is a little beyond her. At the very least, it *feels* a little beyond her. Besides -- Marivel says something that catches her entirely off guard!

"I have a what?" Nimue asks, blinking a few times. "I. ... Sounds fake but okay!" She smiles a little awkwardly, rubbing at the back of her head. Eleanor follows up with more of the same and Nimue turns steadily more pink. "I'm going to die if you keep saying all these nice things!!"

Nimue does not, in fact, die of this. Instead, she suddenly tracks over to the box of donuts with her eyes. Looking thoughtful for a moment, Nimue returns to the paper bag full of shredded cheese she started with. She briefly entertains the thought of combining the two, but the memory of Jerky Sandwich stays with her.

She consumes a donut separately.

<Pose Tracker> Dash Caskett has posed.

Man, those are some rough answers Tio is putting out there. He never liked to think about the last one too much. It could be true.

When Kamui emits THE DREADED NOISE, There are just slightly swining doors in the back of the lab. Dash has literally exited the room with some kind of evasive maneuver.

He slowly peeks his head in afterward. "Don't... do that, please!" he says, looking freaked out. He cautiously re-enters the room. "H-Huh? Oh! No it is fine! I just wasn't sure you could do that in your condition!" He appears to be a bit embarrassed at being called out! Well, he can eat too. Just, uh.

Where does it go?! He has always wondered that! Is the food still inside him soemwhere?! Being a robot is very weird at times.

Marivel recieves a small nod in return. "Okay. Hum! I wonder if looking around ruins nearby could help. Though I wouldn't want something like that to happe nagain!" he says, bewilderment i nthe voice at the end. That Neriah character was bad news.

"A hug couldn't hurt, I bet! Though got to stress, it isn't anythign that will harm you," he mentions toward Tio.

<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

    Tio stands down. Ida lets out a breath that she didn't realize she was holding. The gauntlets dissolve, flowing back into Ida's skin. Within moments, there is no sign that they were ever there. "You have my apologies, Tio," Ida says. "As Eleanor said, you are among friends here. We are all comrades, and we would not want for one of our number to come to harm, accidentally." She starts distributing tea and water, and once she's finished, she pours a cup for herself. She finds herself thinking back to Maekir as the others tell Tio about souls, dreams, and hearts. Ida takes a long drink, and adds her own thoughts.

    "We could spent all day talking to you about what these mean," Ida says. "But if we did, you'd be no closer to knowing what they mean to you. Eleanor gave you good advice." Good advice, but poor orders--an order is something to be followed unthinkingly. "But where are my manners? Ida Everstead-Rey."

<Pose Tracker> Zhang Xiumei has posed.

Xiumei, for a moment, makes a face. Nimue may be fine, but Tio doesn't know what a hug was. She couldn't imagine that Ashley was right. Her expression falls, for a second, but then she blinks -- she looks up when Eleanor introduces her. She doesn't have the big, bright smile of the elf; as a rule, she's more subdued, with a smaller smile, but she looks genuinely happy.

"Zhang Xiumei," she says. "My family immigrated from Guild Galad, so--ah, family name, then given name."

This seems like the sort of thing Tio might not know.

"It's nice to meet you, Tio." She bows her head, politely, and then stands up straighter. "Let us know if there's anything at all you need, okay?"

<Pose Tracker> Ziara Tanir has posed.

"I'm from Guild Galad too but my name goes the other direction," Zi adds, unhelpfully. "Given, then family."

She looks at Nimue again. She seems to have a better idea of where she is this time. She is JUDGING your FOOD CHOICES.

That or she wants some cheese; pick one.

<Pose Tracker> Tio has posed.

    Kamui's sound does not trigger something deep in Tio's soul (if she has one), so she's probably not a reaverbot. She's certainly not as advanced as Kamui, despite being more intact. But few and far between are the people who can tell that.

    But much of the conversation seems to be going over the small automaton's head. She continues to note names, but that confusion only continues as people try to explain dreams to her. "A desire to accomplish things?" She asks, and blinks. "Is that not the same as following orders?" She has a desire to do that, sure, but that's probably the same thing. Simple and achievable might be the goal.

    "Acknowledged. Xiumei is Master's best friend." She pauses again. "Should I also follow Xiumei's orders?"

    She looks over at Kamui who is... Kamui-ing. A demonstration? She turns to face Kamui, and tilts her head to one side again.

<Pose Tracker> Ida Everstead-Rey has posed.

    "Guild Galad is a cosmopolitan place," Ida says. She looks at Xiumei a moment, then at Ziara, with interest. "Where in the city are you from? I grew up on the First and Second Tiers." As if someone with the name Everstead-Rey would come from anywhere that wasn't one of the literal upper districts.

<Pose Tracker> Kamui has posed.

    "... hehe," Kamui grins at Brad and says, "It's come in handy sometime. The lesser Reaverbots can fall for it." This sounds like the basis for Kamui developing a new Vocal Mime tool...

    She stares agog as Dash actually actively flees the room though. "Wah!" she exclaims. "I'm sorry Dash! But it really could be useful. I'll give you a heads up."

    Nimue thinks of combining donuts with cheese. Kamui glances at her for a moment and cryptically murmurs, "No one has committed such a sin as to deserve the Sinner's Donut."

    ... what.

    Eleanor introduces Xiumei to Tio, which prompts her to gives Xiumei a smile again. Ida comments that the best way would be to understand what they mean to her.

    I think Kamui showing you may be best.
    Kamui could prvide you an example of a hug if you'd like.

    Acacia also nudges her towards her sister, and for a moment she looks up towards the ceiling.

    As if the ceiling just opened up and the blue skies made themselves avail and a rainbow beamed down with a trumpeter chorus of angels sent to debilitate her limbs until they were naught but luster candy.



    Despite all the excitement, though, Kamui does settle down a lot when she moves towards Tio. "I'm going to hug you, sister, if it's okay."

    If Tio does acquiesce and let her do so, she moves forward and wraps her arm (and Buster) around her very, very gently. She's extremely quiet for like five seconds.

    Then a tear rolls down her eyes.

    "I'm not going to fail you this time," she speaks without understanding why. "I'm gonna be a much better sister."

<Pose Tracker> Clarissa Arwin has posed.

"Yes! You really can!" Clarissa downright beams at Ziara, her eyes brightening. "I'd love to show him to you. He's got a lot of guts and he wants to help!"

But things seem to be bouncing off their little antennaed friend. Looking back to Tio once more, Clarissa brushes back a lock of fluffy blonde hair, shaking her head.

"Having a dream - or a desire - is about having something in your heart that you want to do," she explains, hand moving to her hip. "But don't feel like you have to have something right away. Eleanor here is a very nice person, and she's extremely kind. I know that she'll take wonderful care of you and help you find your way in the world...."

Kamui steps in and offers up a hug. Clarissa trails off, then presses her lips gently together.

She can't help but sniffle a bit and brush a finger beneath one eye. "...Kamui...."

<Pose Tracker> Tio has posed.

    Tio assents with a nod, as Kamui comes in for the hug. It is a gentle thing, much less boisterous than the one Nimue provided Eleanor. Tio is largely still, letting Kamui embrace her. During that five seconds, Tio's expression changes. It seems sad, responding to something she can't properly recall. But she seems to feel something in this moment.

    She looks up to Kamui, and sees the tears in her eyes. "Sister..." Why? What is it she's responding to here? And why does it feel like... something Tio can't explain?

<Pose Tracker> Marivel Armitage has posed.

"Well, you don't have to believe me." Marivel assures Nimue. "But I believe me." She leaves it at that though so Nimue doesn't actually die. That would be counterproductive. "We should talk soon, Dash." She adds. "You too, Xiumei. Sometime soon."

Introductions are going out. Marivel closes her eyes in thought for about six seconds. When she opens them again, Kamui is offering hug. She isn't going to interrupt that and waits to see if Tio accepts or refuses hug.

And then and only then she approaches Tio.

"My name is Marivel Armitage, a monster. I am also Kamui's mother. Thank you for looking after her. In return, the Armitage household will be ready to give you their aid." Though that is a complicated matter in of itself. "You were possessed until very recently by 'The Claw of Valmar'. It has been removed from you. There is no trace left."

She nods once. "I do not wish to push you beyond your comfort zone, but you may stay for however long you desire. And if you decide to leave, we will not stop you. If you desire guidance, you can receive it. It's good to meet you, Tio. I look forward to seeing how you live your life."

<Pose Tracker> Ashley Winchester has posed.


That's positively heart-melting.

Ashley's expression softens visibly when Kamui gives her sister a great big hug. Doubly so when Tio reciprocates, and even moreso when her face begins changing in apparently confusing ways.

"It looks like you do have a heart," Ashley says with a smile like the first ray of sunshine peeking through a dreary, rainy sky. "I'm glad, Tio. Welcome to the family, even if you might not join ARMS properly. If you're going to stay with Eleanor, then that's just as good in my books...!"

The Sinner's Donut...

What is that... Exactly...?

...And yet--

<Pose Tracker> Eleanor Klein has posed.

Eleanor is being very careful and so doesn't outwardly react to That Noise, but oh. Oh, she knows it. She knows it well. Just like she knows joy, when Ashley reassures her with his silent reply. And just like, "Hmmm, Nimue, I'm not so sure that's true..."

"It can be the same," Eleanor explains to Tio about orders and dreams, "But the goal may be one you've chosen, instead of one instructed to you. Were you ever obligated to make decisions about how best to accomplish something, within a set of general orders? It's a similar principle."

Eleanor thinks that explanation might work. As for orders--"Xiumei won't steer you wrong, I'm sure. You can trust her." A glance to Xiumei, and a smile--and back to Tio. "But you don't have to follow her orders, unless it's a dangerous mission and she's put in charge, all right? You can consider her... a reliable source of input." That may be a good balance.

She takes a moment, while the hug is happening and it's adorably wonderful, to aside to Ida, "You misunderstand; Xiumei was rasied here in Meria. I'm sure your family has had dealings with the Zhang Great Sea Trading Company?"

Eleanor's reminded, though, not only from Tio's emotional response, but from Marivel's statement...

"Ah!" Eleanor says. "...And I am Eleanor Klein, daughter of the Marchioness of Klein, a region to the east of here, part of this nation."

"I will not order you to stay or leave. ...But I'm happy to meet you properly, too, and I look forward very much to getting to know you."

She beams a little, because, Ashley's words, too, are nice. But, "...And as Marivel says--we will keep you safe, as you set forth on this new leg of your life's journey."

<Pose Tracker> Zhang Xiumei has posed.

Xiumei glances at Eleanor, and she nods her head. She glances back at Ida and Ziara. "Mm-hm. My family immigrated," Xiumei says. "About a hundred and fifty years ago, when the burroughs in the city back then got very crowded. I've only been there a couple of times. But... the Zhangs and a few other families were from the city itself, I think."

She blinks a couple times -- then she looks up. Her eyes widen for a second at Tio's question. "Ah, no--you shouldn't--you don't have to follow my orders."

She smiles back at Kamui. Then she blinks, as Kamui hugs Tio. (If they're sisters, she thinks, then why doesn't Varius know who Tio is? Is it because...)


Her eyes are on the floor, then, and her expression is concerned. She glances sideways -- at Marivel -- and then she nods once, loosely.

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Clarine has posed.

Clarine smiles softly and proudly as Kamui offers a hug and Tio accepts. She hopes things go well for the two of them. Clarine clasps her hands in front of her, emitting a soft, warm glow.

"If there is anything you need, Tio, please feel free to ask us...we will do what we can to help you." She offers.

That's about all she can offer right now - in a way, she too, still had to figure her own way in this world, as well. Maybe she could sympathise with that a little.

<Pose Tracker> Ziara Tanir has posed.

"Sure, sure!" Ziara seems pleased with the possibility of meetingworking withworking on Guts-Dozer. "I'd really like that."

But Clarissa turns back to the group, and so does she. To Ida, Ziara's explanation is: "Not that high. I was trained by Earle Marlin, down in the worker's districts. I lived down there too." As an obvious Beastman, it is not really a surprise where Zi lived in Guild Galad - they might not have quite the prejudice against people who work with machines as other cities, but their *other* prejudices are, regrettably, perfectly intact.

Kamui gives Tio a hug. Zi had been planning to ask something, but she doesn't. She smiles instead, letting that happen. It's cute, aaaah. She has the stars-in-eyes thing going again.

<Pose Tracker> Dash Caskett has posed.

"Huh." Dash considers Kamui's statement. "You know, it could! A heads up works just fine." Imagine fooling a Reaverbot with that noise somehow. That would be quite the sight.

There is something magical about this moment, showing Tio what a hug is. He watches the two attentively. He wonders if muimories will come flooding back...! Sadly no. Well, mostly no. Tio reacts, but not nearly as much as hoped. A look is cast toward Marivel. "Huh? Oh, sure!" Wonder what it was about? Perhaps that is why Barrell recommended a visit after the ruins incident?

That old fella is so mysterious sometimes. Speaking of mysterious, he sword he saw Data come off the ship. Where did he get off to?

"You two will surely get along well," he says toward Kamui and Tio. "Gosh, are more of those evil items going to be locked up behind magical chain doors? I can keep an eye out when digging."

<Pose Tracker> Seraph Nimue has posed.

"As for me, I've never once been helpful and have no intention of starting," Nimue says, "but if you just need, like, a weirdo to hang out with, well. I'm your weirdo! For hanging out with." Nimue weighs the wisdom of Additional Donuts, but decides to be good for now.

She also kind of blandly ignores the history of human immigration and its effects on name order. Well. Near-human, in some cases. ... still weird to her! Human names are weird in general. There's a moreinteresting topic, anyway:

"I also want to see this..." she pauses. "Guts... Dozer." There's mischief in her eyes for SURE.

<Pose Tracker> Brad Evans has posed.

"That so..." Brad murmurs to Kamui's assurances. That...makes a lot of sense, actually. He seems appeased by it. He nods to himself.

Something in Kamui's powerful emotions and the way Tio grapples with same makes the big man turn, though, something unreadable on his face. "Seems like this is under control," he says to the air, and shuffles away, off to whatever job he has next.

<Pose Tracker> Kamui has posed.

    Kamui is being surprisingly lucid and tender here, even as Tio's expression changes and she doesn't quite reciprocate or fully understand. It's like she in turn understands the time and space Tio needs... and Eleanor, and everyone else has been telling her to understand it at her own pace as well.

    "I'm here, Tio," she whispers sadly... but with relief in it too.

    She still doesn't understand any of the words she's saying, but to call Kamui an emotion-based creation is... underselling it. All she can do is live according to her emotions.

    Clarissa and Eleanor put it beautifully. Of dreams, something everyone has... even her. And Eleanor's assurance that they'll keep her safe on the next part of her life's journey.

    "I'm here..."