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Aug 08, 2022 3:43 AM
Musoka gets yoinked into the Survivorverse
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-but does nothing to the laser, which passes through both the shield and her construct armor before stopping at her costume. She can feel it warming up the fabric. 

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She puts her hands up in surrender, and floats slowly down to the rooftop, looking embarrassed. 

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"You are dead," says Minerva - and, warm and slightly amused, "and insufficiently paranoid. I hope your session went well?"

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She flops onto a couch made of hope.

"Man, I didn't even think about lasers... I hope the armor Ceru mentioned can deal with those."

"Therapy went well; we're getting along better now. I... didn't realize she was so young."

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"I don't really think age is a very useful way to model it. I'm not human or even biological; I don't have the same kinds of things going on."

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Minerva nods. "Synthetics are not all built to a human model, and human analogies often break down, there. I am glad your relationship is recovering."

She considers. "I do think that your main advantage is speed, though; the assumption that your shield could block the attack could have been wrong if I had had more raw power than I expect I do, but very few people have any ability to harm you if you are moving as fast as I have seen you move. Do you know if there are upper limits on that?"

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"I suppose the actual word I meant is 'inexperienced'? You're still learning about how to be a person and have feelings, and that was not how I was thinking of you!"

"...I don't actually know what my top speed is? Ceru said that "velocity" isn't quite the right way to measure what we're doing, anyways..."

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"Ring flight is... not really running off of displacement-via-applying-force? I'm not quite sure how to explain it; it's intuitive under my built-in model of physics, but my built-in model of physics diverges from the one used by your society in many ways. Her apparent velocity will scale with local conditions (inversely with air pressure, to a rather large degree) and also with the strength of her hope. At her maximum recorded hope output (which she hit last night, during her second batch of healing; a new record by about 15%) she's currently capable of hitting an apparent velocity of about Mach 23 (at 1 atmosphere of pressure), but that's not realistic to fighting conditions. In practice sessions, her hope output when stabilizing after being startled was enough for the Mach 3-5 range."

"My combat modeling indicates that the biggest limitation on her evasiveness is her reaction time and not her top speed; the augmented soldiers last night were able to hit her while she was going very fast, and she could have only dodged if she'd changed directions between when their rounds left their weapons and when they would have hit. Though, now that I'm thinking about how her flight interfaces with the ring's intent-interpretation subsystems, it may actually be possible for me to write up a flight-path assistance control that automates away individual decisions? There's existing code in here that's doing similar things for healing and complex construct generation; I can look into modifying it."

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Minerva nods. "Powers often work this way, yes... and that's very fast." The Atlantic Six's extremely streamlined tinker-made transport makes Mach 3, Mach 4 if you can afford to do repairs before you fly it anywhere else. 

And a moment of consideration. "Randomized dodging in a combat situation could work, and while the Perfetti are almost uniquely accurate, we already know that Livia has a grudge against you." And might equip her next force with Steelstorm Industries weapons.

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"Are they likely to be able to acquire high powered lasers at that frequency? That would be... pretty worrying, since a well-aimed laser is difficult to dodge."

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"Most likely not," she admits. "And good armor will have integrated defensive systems. But a large part of preparing for combat consists of attempting to deduce the weaknesses in your opponent's powers, and find a way to use yours to exploit them." It is something she is very good at; *something* in her sixfold blaster can almost always find a way. "To pit superhuman strength against human toughness."

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