Sep 15, 2019 6:24 AM
A Lian and a Kyn in Fallen London
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She sees the light ahead of them before any of her crew, a gathering near the ceiling of the Neath and then an arc downwards into the black waters of the zee. She throws her arm before her eyes, and is still left blinking spots out of her gaze.

"What was that?" a crewmember calls out in alarm.

"I don't know," she replies, "but we're checking it out."

There's murmurs, but her crew do as commanded.

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Being human hurts, and her new flesh burns in the intensity of her light. She screams and tries to draw it in, muffling all things.

(In the water is a woman, naked and glowing and simply floating there, not quite touching the cold waves, as if the water itself shies away from her. Steam rises from wherever the greatest intensity of her light touches.)

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"Ho there!" Sarah calls out when the strange woman becomes visible. "...Do you need help?"

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A muffled shriek, and her glow recedes - and she splashes into the water, flailing, sinking, unable to coordinate her limbs enough to swim.

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She curses under her breath and directs her ship closer, before diving into the waves after the sinking woman.

They're soon both on board again, and the ship's doctor hurries over with blankets.

"Are you alright?" the doctor asks.

"I'm fine," says Sarah, glancing at the woman.

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Who can't quite figure out this 'talking' thing, her mouth opening and closing uselessly. She eventually makes a sort of 'unh' sound.

The doctor sighs, says, "Let's get you inside and clothed. Captain?"

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"We have enough spare provisions. We'll get her back to London, maybe find someone who knows her."

There is general assent, as the doctor hurries the strange woman inside.

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Some time later, she's been clothed and taught how to form sounds - marvelous, that humans speak in such a way - and has figured out how to stop shimmering. When it came out she lacked a name, the crew dubbed her Lillian. Apparently in honor of someone, she didn't understand who.

They're approaching this 'London,' now, and Lillian has pressed herself against the front of the ship, watching the approaching lights in wonder.

It's a lovely city.

When they dock, she initially stays on the ship as instructed, but then it's been a while and her curiosity overcomes her, and while none of the crew are looking she slips onto firm ground, gazing in open-eyed astonishment. All the buildings! And the people! All sorts of different people, she'd never heard 'lesser' beings could be so interesting.

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Kim has been tracking the judgement since they fell from the sky. Sometimes by herself, sometimes with other reports from her fellows.

Now she waits in a shadowy corner, rifle levelled. She's ready to end the judgement's life, to preserve the Great Chain, to ensure life continues in the way that is right and proper. 

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There's a rather mangy looking cat over there. He looks grouchy and sad, so Lillian walks up to him - she doesn't have all her words, but she can hum an old song her mother sang, and giggle when the cat jumps onto her shoulder, purring. The cat's fully willing to give instructions as to proper care and petting, and whispers in her ear between rumbles.

Mostly welcomes to London, and a confirmation that she's been told the highlights, so far. He asks her if she's been told about the Bazaar, she says not much, and he lowers his voice and leans in to whisper quieter -

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She comes into view, and Kim knows it's her, that she is the target. She's mostly suppressed her glow, but no one else in London has that...brightness she has. Kim sucks in a breath, and aims for her head.

...but can't. She can't pull the trigger. The judgement is...well. She's bright, and joyful (her smile), and beautiful. There's just no one in London that could have the light she does. But she has to be put down, she's a weakness in the Chain, and it must be protected. Kim puts her eye back to the sight, and levels the rifle again.

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The cat leans in, whispers - "I suggest you run."

Lillian startles, looking around, even as the cat digs his claws in her shoulder - and meets the gaze of her would-be assailant.

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...and Kim can't. Her gun lowers. She meets the gaze of the fallen judgement, and feels a shift in her heart.

She could rescue her, get her somewhere safe. Away from the cult. Maybe they're wrong about her, anyone that innocent couldn't actually be bad, could they? 

Then she remembers her fellows, posed ready to shoot should she fail-

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Her gun comes back up, aiming at someone on a roof, and fires. The person crumples. Kim doesn't wait to see if it's fatal, and vaults over obstructions to get to the judgement. 

"We have to go. Now," she orders, grabbing the woman's arm and tugging her into the shadows.

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What just happened, what was that noise -

She follows along after, craning her neck around.

(The cat hisses at the newcomer, then digs his claws in and clings on).

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A shot ricochets off the wall just by the judgement's head, and Kim pulls her away quickly. "Keep running! Head down!" She pushes her ahead, and then readies her rifle.

As soon as a familiar shape comes into view, she lifts her rifle, aims, and pulls the trigger. 

Like the first, she doesn't check to see if they're dead. She simply holsters her rifle and runs to catch up with the judgement. 

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She glows a bit when she's startled, then whips around to glare at where the shot came from - but lets herself be dragged. "What's going on?"

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"They're (we're) trying to kill you. We've got to go before they actually get a shot in." 

Where's the closest inn? She remembers one being not too far from the docks, but that's not far enough from them. Further in, there'd be a safe space for now...she hopes.

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Too late!

A bullet rips through her shoulder, and she screams, a high-pitched, distressed sound. Her blood shimmers golden, and sizzles where it falls. What is this stinging, what is this hurt in her flesh?

She whips around, something gathering about her - 

"This is not the time to fight! Those weapons can harm others, too!" the cat on her shoulder hisses. He then yowls and jumps down, calling out, "Follow me!" and darting into a narrow alley, barely visible at all.

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No! NO!

Kim turns and fires at the pursuer, not caring to make a perfect hit, only to stop whoever was hurting the girl- and sees her cat sprint away. "Follow the cat! I'll watch our backs."

She keeps firing as she backs up.

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She pokes at the wound, still a bit stunned by her own blood, then glances after the cat - and grabs her would-be rescuer and starts dragging.

Incidentally, all the lights on the street go out, rushing towards her before melding into her skin and vanishing.

Humans can't see in the dark, right. (It's incredibly uncomfortable, she can hardly breathe in the dark, but - Better than people getting hurt.)

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"Wow," Kim says on a sigh, watching as the lights get extinguished.

Her serious demeanour returns once the girl starts dragging her away, and slips her hand down to grab hers and runs after the cat. She tells herself it's too keep her getting shot and keeping up, not because to keep her safe- 

She sees the girl getting uncomfortable, and takes a tighter grip on the girl. "I've got you. I'm not letting go. We need to keep moving."

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"Right."

She follows the cat through the twists and turns of the alleys of Wolfstack, breaking into Spite and then clambering up to the roofs of the Flit. Lillian is nimble, never putting her feet wrong as she leaps across rooftops, even in the darkness.

Before long - another high-up alley, a short maze through an abandoned building, and a rickety door, leaning against the wall rather than hinged. The cat skids up to it, and mrows.

A single bright feline eye peaks out from a gap beneath the door. "Password?" says a young, feminine voice.

"Hiro, I don't have time for this - " spits the cat. "Let us in."

"Not without the password, Senna!" she sing-songs, but the door creaks open nonetheless to her "Hey!"

A rather grubby child looks out. "Wot you want?" they ask, putting a hand on one hip. "This's my hideout."

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Kim manages to follow, albeit less gracefully, her landings are always heavy. 

Once they reach the door, Kim keeps an eye and a rifle on the way they came. "Ascendant Protectorate are after her. We need somewhere to lie low."

Doesn't mention that she is one of them...formerly one of them? A problem to consider later.

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"And that's my business because...?"

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"It's not. We're asking for help. You refuse us, we'll keep moving. But she-" Kim looks at the judgement. "...my friend is in need of medical attention. If I can just have a few hours to help her, we'll get out of your way."

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