2019-06-03 - So Close To The Surface


Recuperating after going after Sifror doesn't go as smoothly as it should.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Mon Jun 3 00:00:00 2019
Location: Koa's Place

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Koa's place is full of magical things. They're generally relatively minor magical things. A drinking horn that will give whatever drink is asked for. A stone lion that moves to watch where people are. An stone slab with a magical circle on it that helps Koa contain potentially explosive experiments.

Right now it's also full of people. Hurt people. Keiko was hurt physically. Koa a bit more… metaphysically. And Illyana…?

Well, Koa's not sure. He got Keiko bandaged about twenty minutes ago and has been leftovers - corned beef hash mostly, dinner edition. There's whatever drinks people have said they needed already out. He's not sure the food will help or that people will be hungry but it had given him something to do while he tried to regain control of himself.

The skillet clinks on his table as he sets it down and some plates nearby.

"How are you feeling Keiko?" Since she's the one with the bandages on her and all.

"And you, Illyana?" It probably says something about the intensity of what happened that he asks. Normally he wouldn't assured that predators don't show weakness anyway, so the answer he would get would be 'fine' regardless of the truth.

Now though? Perhaps a different answer.

For a change, when Koa puts out food, Illyana doesn't come running. Well. Not that Illyana runs very often. Anyhow, instead of joining them at the table, she instead paces in front of the window with a tumbler of vodka. While Koa bandaged up Keiko, she availed herself of his shower, and is currently also wearing his bathrobe which is way too big for her. It's wrapped tight and belted around her, the hem dragging the floor. Her wet hair is pinned on top of her head with some strands loose and falling about her face.

The blonde looks over as Koa calls her name, her gaze distant. She drains what's left in her glass and pads over to set her glass down near him for a refill. "Hoping it worked." Comes her answer.

Keiko hadn't stirred when Illyana transported them back to Koa's, just lay prostrate on the floor as they left her. Burned and clawed, the small peruvian was a patchwork of injuries. It was more than that though, she remembers the way the power had burned through her and how that burden had been shared.

She'd still not said much as she huddled on the floor by Koa's sofa, knees gingerly drawn to her chest.

"I'm alright." she answers. Really, had Koa expected any other answer? To show weakness was a failing she couldn't allow herself.

"I'm not even sure how we'll know." she says lowly, but they'll both hear her.

Koa picks up the drinking horn and refills the vodka. No one has spoken much for the last 20 minutes or so. It has been very much a case of him mostly listening to the sound of meat sizzle. And for a moment, again, after Keiko speaks the only sound is of a serving spoon hitting plates as he dishes up food.

"Well…" His phone goes off and he looks over to it, and smiles ever so slightly at the message.

"WAND remote viewing has noted several locations suspected to be in the hands of the Nightfall are on fire or currently experiencing some kind of ongoing conflict. I'd say it worked. They're turning on each other. That means someone must have sensed weakness. Like… Plokta withdrawing his support and blessing."

Or at least that's what Koa hopes. Hard to know how to interpret that right now.

Koa pushes the food out, in people's direction though he doesn't actually tell them to eat. Instead he gets himself a drink and sits down heavily.

"Which is good. I'm… not sure I could manage that again." He could DO it, certainly. But without snapping?

Good question. It'd be a little bit like what Illyana had spoken of earlier. Endlessly pushing and pulling power in and out of him. He'd break sooner or later. Possibly sooner.

Illyana Rasputina's pale gaze slides over to Keiko as she speaks, and then Koa. Watching. She picks up her refilled glass, folding one arm over he chest as she cradles the vodka close with the other. It's a long time after Koa shares the news before she speaks. "Well. That's something then." She leans her head back, rolling it from side to side and blowing out a sigh.

"Siffror got his cheap shot in. He isn't likely to escalate this any further, and I don't know of another being powerful enough that's looking to pick a fight with Plokta. Besides, I think we burned out the link to hit him with." 'The link' being y'know, Keiko. Well, the mark Keiko carried.

Keiko must feel Illyana's gaze on her as she glances in the womans direction and quickly drops her eyes. It takes her a moment to pull the plate towards herself and listfully moves the food around it.

"That's something. Maybe the corrupted Magi have made a move…" She knows there was at least one here in New York recently. "I don't know I could do it again, even if the link still exists. My spirits …."

Koa had felt them, fighting her. Felt the pain as they tried to tear her apart from the inside out.

It's not like Keiko would break if it happened again. Her control is so strong it would shatter.

"How is he likely to respond?" Koa asks. "How would you respond, Illyana?" Respond if someone took a shot at her like that. If it were one of her rivals. A splinter lord. Belasco perhaps though he doesn't name him.

"I saw. I felt it, a bit." Keiko's struggles had been the most visceral of any of them. "I think…"

Koa suddenly blurs. It's like his astral self is partly pushing out for just a moment. Then he's doubled over, dropping out of his chair and onto his knees, eyes open wide, pupils narrowed to pinpoints. He lets out a low, pained growl

Illyana Rasputina purses her lips, tilting her head side to side in a thoughtful manner, like she's trying to decide between a pair of options. "By all accounts Plokta's not the fighting sort. He's more of a seducer. He might decide to reap the Nightfall. Bring in all he can and sacrifice any further 'harvests' of worshippers." Nasty business for the Nightfall, but they're the bad guys here, right?

The blonde glances over as Koa's form blurs, and then she's putting her glass down as she moves over to where he hits the ground. Kneeling down she looks him over to see if he's hurt in some manner.

"Then we should watch Otherworld." Keiko says quietly. "If we've injured Plokta, he might try to pull from his influence there…" she nods though. Illyana's right. Some of the Nightfall at least will be taken.

As Koa doubles over, she moves as well, whimpering as her abused body responds. "Koa?" Not Agent Turner and there's something akin to emotion in her tone. She's not as 'well' as she said she was. Strange that.

Trying to keep her distance from Illyana, the peruvian doesn't think as she touches his arm.

Koa's whole form shakes in a very weird way. It's like he is physically displacing between two positions, hunched over and slightly more hunched over, and more strangely two body forms. His usual body and his beast form. The two women have seen his astral body. Usually it climbs out of his physical one, it doesn't replace it.

He's not physically hurt. That both Keiko and Illyana can tell. But he's throwing off enough magic to make Keiko's tattoos itch and Illyana can see his astral form wraping something fierce. That sense of a predator about him grows even stronger.

He stabilizes… but not in an entirely good way. When he lifts his head in response to Keiko his eyes are blank and solid blue. He looks from Keiko to Illyana and back again.

He looks… hungry.

Illyana Rasputina doesn't touch Koa, but she watches as it's clear he isn't physically hurt. There's nothing her touch can do. "I thought we'd tapped you out." Illyana murmurs, as much to herself as to Koa.

Then her pale blue gaze slides over to Keiko as she reaches for him. The sorceress slowly pushes to her feet, giving her the height advantage to look down at Koa. "You should talk to me." She advises the hungry magic-eater. "Before I take the cautious approach." Cautious as in, putting him down in case he might be a danger. Illyana doesn't take her eyes from him. "What do you feel, Keiko?"

"Koa …" Keikos arms are burning. "… talk to us …" She forces herself to hold that hungry gaze of his when it falls on her. "Could he have drawn more from the environment?" That's to Illyana, though Keiko hasn't seen anything else whither and die.

"My arms are burning. Normally they'd itch … It's him but I don't know if it's his power or what's happened to me that's making them burn …" beat "He feels different. I don't know how though. It … tastes … different."

"You did…" Koa rasps. Like he wants to growl and it's an effort to force himself to speak. "I don't know what it's eating right now to… nnngh!"

The Agent hunches over more. There's now visible, ghostly steam or smoke coming off of him. Illyana can feel something through that collar she has on him. A very familiar sensation. That of a soul being consumed. This is, a little bit, what it felt like when she went through the ritual of the black virtues. Only in her case her soul was being coated in ick, not burned for power.

Keiko gets a sympathetic pang in her brand, routed to her from her own collar.

A shark's tooth burns itself into the silvery lock on the front of Koa's own… ornamentation.


Illyana Rasputina curses suddenly, the harsh demonic words falling like shrapnel on the area. She steps forward and this time she does touch him, her palm finding skin and her eyes kindle with power. White this time, with her own power as she calls it up from within herself.

Flames spark into being along the floor, and start to light lines as though someone's lit a fuse, starting to carve out a magical circle around the three of them. The magic Illyana raises is pushed into Koa. Since they're on Earth, that source is much more limited than if they were in Limbo, but at least it's mostly pure and not tainted by the Limbo.

Illyana Rasputina curses suddenly, the harsh demonic words falling like shrapnel on the area. She steps forward and this time she does touch him, her palm finding skin and her eyes kindle with power. White this time, with her own power as she calls it up from within herself.

Flames spark into being along the floor, and start to light lines as though someone's lit a fuse, starting to carve out a magical circle around the three of them. The magic Illyana raises is pushed into Koa. Since they're on Earth, that source is much more limited than if they were in Limbo, but at least it's mostly pure and not tainted by the Limbo.

Keiko grunts as the pain hits her. Her shoulders flinching, making her cry out as muscles pull on her already tortured skin. "What are you doing …"

It stings. "He's drawing something from me…" Of course she wouldn't understand what's going on, this is so far outside her wheelhouse.

"Make it stop…" The shower of magic from the Limbo Queen, has the peruvian hunching over. She'd rather be anywhere else but here, right now.

The circle carves around both of them. Koa's inner form is now consuming bits of his soul and Keiko's to power itself and the agent is struggling against a portion of his own being to cut it off. It hasn't worked yet and it BURNS.

In a way it makes sense. Why not take from Keiko? She's never challenged Koa. She's been stubborn but from a point of view of a predator she's clearly prey. And predators only stop for bigger, meaner predators.

"I'm trying." The agent grits out to Keiko. He's trying but he's still eating something from within her and not only does it hurt but as he does it, it leaves her feeling… numb. Like there's a hole, if only a small one, waiting to be filled.

The magic circle completing has him looking up at Illyana and despite himself, snarling in defiance. The magic she pushes into him at least stops the consumption. It starts eating that. Koa's eyes flare bright white, same color as hers and then he pitches forward as a MUCH more bestial version of the astral form emerges, clutching a ball of red/white power, and a little violet, that might be from Keiko.

Calling the Circle around her gives Illyana options. Such as drawing on Earth's magic, such as it is. Not in the way Koa does, by feeding on the life of things, but the actual magic that pulses in the world. It's a mere trickle from what she's used to, but between that and what she has personally, hopefully it's enough.

As Koa's astral form slips free of her body, a breath hisses out of her slowly. "Well. At least that's a little more normal." Her tone is grim. Not at all her usual teasing, mocking manner. It's enough to make you miss it, even if the mocking was turned on you. Because then things weren't deadly serious.

"C'mere boy." Illyana coaxes the beast her way, glancing briefly at Keiko to check her condition.

At least Koa didn't try to eat Keiko's spirits? Keiko might think that, later. Now though she's desperately trying to stop him drawing from her "Stop.it." she growls. She doesn't challenge Koa. Stubborn she might be, but Keiko knows her place in the 'pack'.

Thank the Nightfall for that. They trained her well.

The numb feeling starts to spread, she hunches over a little more. If only that feeling would cover her body right now - her spirits are fighting her as well, not that anyone can see the tattooes writhe beneath the bandages.

Beast-Koa looks down at Keiko like a dog might a delicious rawhide bone but when Illyana coaxes him forward he drifts toward her. Literally floats toward her. And that's when both women might notice something interesting.

Astral Koa is ALSO wearing a collar.

The moment of calm is enough for the agent to reassert control over this part of himself and the astral creature is seemingly pulled back into Koa's physical form. He gasps and rolls over onto his back.

"Ow." Is all he says, but at least he's not looking like he wants to take a bite out of either the sorceress or the tattoo bearer.

"Did I hurt anyone?" When he was 'out of body' he means.

Well, Illyana certainly didn't plan for *that*, but she's been working with imperfect information. "Yes. I suggest you make it up to her." Illyana says, kneeling down next to Koa and placing one glowing hand over the center of his chest as she continues to feed magic into him. "Keiko is friend. Not food." She chastises him.

Things must be looking up if she's making jokes. "Why didn't you say you were starving?" The sorceress scowls down at him and looks over to Keiko again. "Let him make it up to you. You need rest." She'll wait to get a closer look at Koa's beast until later. When they're not all licking their wounds.

The peruvian just whimpers, curling over more as the Beast looks at her. They might have found the limits of her endurance. There's nothing stubborn about her at the moment.

"He's hungry?" That's what registers when the dark haired woman raises her head. "I …" Let him make it up to her? How? She hurts all over, except that one part of her that is simply … empty now. Not even her trials left her like that.

"I'll just be over here…" She curls into a ball, making herself as small as possible.

"He's supposed to be hungry… and he's never done that before…" He. Koa is speaking of that part of him as if it's another person with a mind of it's own. That's not true of course. But it's… easier to think of it in those terms somehow.

"Sorry, Keiko." That… is not something he would normally say, not with his predator this close to the surface and Illyana about, two factors against sort of… normal social interactions. But he is sorry. Sorry he hurt her. And sorry that he took something… fairly important to her.

"I'll… try to make it up to you." He's not sure he can but the first part of doing so is picking himself up off the floor. Slowly. Painfully. Very carefully.

Keiko is friend. Not food.

"Why don't I start by getting us a bit more to drink." Drinks, and quiet may be in order. It's possible at some point people will want to go home, or do something or watch something. Koa has no idea. He's never done anything like this before.

All he knows, right now, is that they've been through hell, they need a rest and right now the three people in the room are the only ones who understand what all of that means.

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