Description: After their round 2 fight, I-No and Rose have a conversation about the kind of things grown-up women talk about, like Ryu's junk, the fate of the universe, and having sex with Johnny Depp. They have so much in common!
Two women held an epic battle at this dead place, an epic clash of powers, decided in a hair's breadth, all of the drama of which was entirely sucked out of it by one of the parties suggesting they stop because she was bored.
There was a requisite amount of panting, sweating, and inelegant floor sitting at the end of the fight, one in which Rose put a question to I-No that has yet to be answered. Now, at least, one would imagine these two women have recovered enough that they're not going to have to talk to each other sprawled on the ground like peasant farmers.
Case in point: I-No got back on her feet, dusted herself off, and proceeded to have a seat on... uh, midair, basically, crossing one red-clad leg over the other and removing her pointed hait long enough to shake out the sable length of her hair. Despite the ridiculous amount of power being thrown back and forth on both sides of the previous battle, she doesn't look particularly the worse for wear, though definitely exhausted enough that more fighting is not in the future.
"Came here freely and of my own will? Sure. I was bored." She inclines a head toward Shang Tsung's palace in the distance, its towering form vague and indistinct given the purple haze of the wasteland sky, but still barely perceptible. "You think all you... jesus, what are they calling it? Earthrealm? Can we just say 'good guys'?"
She pauses, pulling the red witch hat back on top of her head, and shrugs, crossing her arms over her ample chest. "Anyhow you think all these DEFEND THE LIGHT bozos are here by choice? They got conscripts, mercenaries... well, so does General Side-of-Guac and the rest of these interdimensional fuckheads. I get bored easy and I like punching people and they asked nicest."
Rose herself is bruised and somewhat dishevelled; enough that she was glad to stop throwing fists. She even got out a jug of what is probably water, which she brought along (presumably in case she was stuck here for days, months, years). The cup is small but comfortable for sharing: best not to think of what it's made of.
Also she sat down. She keeps sitting down. Unlike I-no she is not floating saucily in the air, but the height disparity doesn't bother her. "Mm," she says, looking back the way they came.
"It is certainly up for debate if Earth would necessarily be "the good guys." History has not always been kind to us. And there are both saints and sinners from our lands." She refills the cup of water, swirling it but not pouring it down her throat.
"I can't say," Rose says. "I haven't mingled much. I can sense someone who I would rather not encounter without preparation." Her eyes turn upwards to I-no's as she shifts herself, crossing one leg over the other, the heeled boots remaining slightly ridiculous on her as she does. "Though tell me of this General Guacamole. If I understand you, perhaps he is someone I ought to meet. I've always been fond of a nice avocado."
"Ha!" The bark of laughter from the Red Witch is genuine, strong, clear; it rings out in the otherwise empty space. Well, that and the skin-on-skin sound of her smacking a hand onto her leather-clad hip. The idea that Team Earthrealm are No Angels is the understatement of the goddamned century, though it doesn't perhaps rise to the level of 'kneeslapper'. Hence the hip placement. "You fuckin' think? If I were a rando normie out in Dubuque who realized there was a tournament out on some fuck-off Pacific island you can only find with a Hogwarts invitation for the fate of planet and saw the jerkoffs that they've got fighting for Mother Earth up in here? I'd drink a bottle of bleach on the spot."
Harsh but fair.
There's a pause, and then I-No grins, tilting her head somewhat at Rose, giving the fortuneteller a mischievous expression. "Present company excluded, Dame Shawl of Scarftopia, but pretty sure you alone isn't gonna be enough to wrap this shit up before it's apocalypse o'clock."
Another pause, and then I-No rolls her head on her shoulders a bit, working out a crick in her neck, her gaze travelling away from Rose as she responds to that final question. "Some... I forget his fucking name. Blue-green Legends of the Hidden Temple-looking motherfucker who's in charge of the Bad News Interdimensional Bears. What's his name?" She stops, thinking, brow furrowed, then snaps her fingers and turns her gaze back to Rose. "Kotal! That guy. The one who beat seventeen shades of emo into Bubbles, which is probably why he was down sobbing into his theoretical beer underground."
Rose parses the city I-no mentions as something in the Middle East. It's probably for the best. "If it truly is a war, perhaps maniacs and jerk-offs would be our great hope," Rose answers mildly, but she does give a rueful smile.
"No," she says; "Not enough on my own."
She purses her lips at this update on the situation. Damn, Rose thinks inwardly: Theoretical beer? I wished there was actual beer here. (This is important for daily survival in the face of Kombat.) The rest is digested. "Kotal," she says. "And he fought... Bubbles."
The cup is waved around towards I-no as Rose's head tilts to the side. Her lips purse - which they are naturally inclined to do, of course, but even for her it pops. "This isn't the first time you've mentioned 'Bubbles'. Does he have a trade name?"
Rose then slides her fingers through her hair, which frankly needed a little bit of smoothing at this point. "Maybe we should throw a mixer when we get back, but if the beer is only theoretical I doubt it would go terribly well. And where would we find a venue?"
"Did you just ask me if he's some dude's closeted fuck buddy?" I-No inquires, when Rose asks for the 'trade name' of someone named 'Bubbles'. In general, this probably says more about I-No than it does about Rose, though it's very likely there are drag queens who do amazing versions of both in some bar, SOMEWHERE (probably Australia). Before Rose can protest, gasp, or do something elsewise ladylike, I-No shrugs her shoulders. "In any event I dunno what his damn name is. He's got a dirty gi, no shoes, and no fucking cojones either."
For a moment, the red-clad witch thinks back to her fight with Ryu, one where the World Warrior's legendary capacity for directed martial arts violence did not seem up to its typical levels. 'Either you're gonna settle this shit, or someone's gonna barbecue you and use your spare ribs as a xylophone,' she had said.
Hopefully nobody's playing a marimba solo on his corpse right this second.
"Anyhow there's not enough alcohol on the planet to get me to spend leisure time with these chucklefucks unless I'm attempting to bury a pickaxe in their skull," I-No adds with a shrug. "I don't know what his deal was. One second he was hesitant, the next second he sounded like a D-tier comic book villain." She pointedly does not add: I deliberately goaded him into trying to kill me and he wouldn't do it no matter how hard I hit him. Rose can find that part out on her own.
"He's got the skills to back it up, though. Or he will, if you can find whatever buried treasure box his testicles are in."
Rose's actual response is another brief burst of laughter. It would seem the ladylike demeanor was punched out of her... or perhaps she's against a ruin in saucy attire and talking to a woman who would be topless if she took off her jacket. The rules differ.
"I suppose helping a man find his testicles is certainly going to present a challenge, particularly if they were left in his other pants," Rose continues, eyes lidding slightly. But she gets slightly less saucy in tone: "He didn't have a duffel bag with him, did he?"
Continuing on, though, she says, "I thank you for telling me. I will certainly find him; I had been hoping to finish THESE," Meaning her improvised hand-etched tarot cards, presumably, "but it had been slow going and there is likely not much time to waste."
This actually earns a grin from I-No. She may give everyone -- EVERYONE -- shit, but the type of person who can laugh at it with grace is one she can, if not like (she doesn't like anybody), then at least respect enough to get along with peacefully. "Who knows," she says loftily, raising a palm into the air with what she would think is a dainty gesture but which any proper society lady would see through in an instant, "maybe they're tree nuts. I bet if you walk into that fucked up, Wonkaland-on-crack forest that The Host with the Least has underneath Castle fucking Greyskull you'll find SOMEONE'S balls hanging off a branch."
A brief pause, before she adds: "The GOOD Wonka. Gene Wilder. Not that fucking Disney pirate doing a bad Keith Richards act."
There's a pause, and then I-No slides forward off her invisible 'seat', brushing the dust of centuries off her red leather pants and looking at Rose with an appraising, critical expression. "You want my advice? Forget the Miss Cleo shit for now. Besides you and Bubbles I ain't seen much in the way of people with more bite than bark on your side of the ledger. I'm just in it for shits and giggles so I don't fucking care if they pave Earth and put in a parking lot and a Starbucks. But I guess that means I don't really give a shit who wins?"
She shrugs one final time. It's her definitive physical gesture in this encounter with Rose, the shrug; everything about her cool tone, her blasť speech, and her crass-but-accurate dismissals suggests a sort of bored indifference to the situation. "I just like people who can show me a good time and we still got a ways to go with this fuck-off carnival."
"Oh Johnny isn't that bad once you've gotten to know him," Rose says, but the matter develops before she can amplify further.
"Your point is taken, but the Miss Cleo Bullshit is not truly an act for me," Rose says with a theatrical little sigh. She does push herself up against the wall, though, walking herself upright rather than pushing up directly. She reaches an upright position and only briefly has to adjust her own top. "But if there's ways to avoid such things... Well, you know the story of the elephant rider and the holy man?"
Rose then places a fingertip at her temple. "I would ask if you would like to stroll back together, but I expect you are going to ride that guitar into the sun-set."
"I never said there was anything wrong with Depp," I-No fires back, just as casually. "Shit wonka but the man's got... other skills."
Two can play this game. Some have played it multiple days in a row.
The intimation that Rose's tarot cards are not for mall goth-y show but rather represent a genuine psychic gift gets an eyebrow, but this is I-No, who can't take anything seriously, so the eyebrow is about as much legitimate recognition as she can manage. "Subtle," she says, with a nod to the story of the elephant rider. "Last I saw he was in the caves under the castle but I may have, uh, kicked him off a waterfall or some shit." A brief pause. "I doubt he's dead though if Earth's Only Hope is currently washed out to sea face-down in the brine I guess that's, you know, on me."
For a moment, her distant expression -- her potentially well-constructed facade of not caring -- briefly vanishes; barely for a fraction of a moment, but Rose can see it. The expression that suggests she's considering saying more, but something that has real weight, real impact. And then it's just the crooked smile, the eyes that seem like a different shade every time you can catch their gaze. Like the briefest flash of the moon on a clouded night.
And then she turns to go, giving a jaunty wave as she walks off, turned away from Rose. "I'm ridin' something home tonight but it ain't my fucking guitar, that's for fucking certain," I-No yells back. "See you on the flip side, Crumpets."
Rose smiles with a bit of wistfulness.
"Well," she says, "I will have to hope that he washed away somewhere safe. If not I will have to resurrect him - perhaps after I locate his testicles." She does not seem to anticipate that his demise is likely.
That look, fleeting as it was, is also seen, but Rose has heard a lot of people's secrets, and so she does not remark further on it. She snorts as I-no speaks, and calls after her, "Be careful of the skulls!"
Why? "I nearly snapped a heel in one!"
As I-no fades into the distance, Rose says to herself, "'Bubbles'... well, I suppose she found him attractive. I can hardly blame her."
More quietly, "And I hope that there will be a future with somewhat fewer skulls."
Log created on 19:52:30 10/26/2016 by Rose, and last modified on 22:38:06 10/26/2016.