Description: In what was supposed to be simply a matter of business process has ended up into a miserable day for me. After we secured the Command Gear, I had hoped to be washing my tools in preperation for the creature's examination. Imagine my despair when I found out that not only I had to oversee the transfer of valuable NOL secrets to the Sacred Order, but their leadership practically treat me as a hostile attacker! Really, it's not my fault they want their little Command Gear back...
That was it then.
The Command Gear was secured, at hardly the cost of the bounty. Not even the broker the information. It was, for all purposes, perfect. The Novus Orbis Librarium had won, thanks to his most precious son, and dearest of friends. Relius Clover already was eager for his... personal audience with the Command Gear, to have her stretched on the altar of creation and discovery. The depths of scientific discovery was ripe for Relius to plumb...
Until the terms of the deal reached Colonel Clover's ears.
The transactions at the Sacred Order would be coming immediately. The arrival of the Imperial Guard would be sudden and swift. An invasion, perhaps. The arrival of soldiers was only the thinnest level of guards, as they arrive to the neutral territory of the Vatican. Marching orders, step in step. And yet, there were not even that many, in comparison to the rank and file of the scholars. And yet, the presence was here, as the soldiers of the NOL come to full force, spreading across the square. And at the head of it was Relius Clover himself.
To bring what was requested.
The blonde-haired man was clad in a suit of violet, with puffy white pants tucked into his gold and purple boots. His magenta cloak was clasp around his chest in gold, twirling behind him. Upon his face was a mask of gold, covering only the upper half of his face, where white eyes glow outward. At his side was Ignis, the magenta human doll, constructed of an unknown alloy, and just as blonde as him. She hovers beside him silently, holding a crate in her arms... as the adepts and acolytes scatter, the bells of the Vatican ringing. Of course, he didn't even come announced, but, well.
His very presence would be his announcement.
Leo Whitefang always knew that this day was coming, on way or another. It was impossible to keep Dizzy perpetually hidden from the world and as soon as word of the escaped Darkstalker had reached him, he knew it was only a matter of time before things came to their head. To him, the ideal situation would have been to present Dizzy to the world, a ready Dizzy, fully confident and in control, to assuage fears and argue for her right to exist free and to benefit the world with her presence ..but Dizzy's own lack of maturity, lack of control..seemed to say that this was not an ideal move or that the time simply wasn't right yet.
And yet perhaps he underestimated her and her own tenancity and ability to make decisions and place others before herself. It would seem that treating Dizzy as a child has led to this as much as the carelessness with the Darkstalker.
And so, with Ky often sent forth out into the world and The Grandmaster not readily available..it has fallen to the Greatknight Leo to attend to this meeting.
This is not necessarily a good thing. One almost feel the impending clash of egos long before the lion maned knight makes his way into the vast open court before St. Peter's Cathedral and begins marching across it, flanked only by two imposing, large and fully armored Sacred Order Soldiers and ..nothing else. And even at that, as he he draws closer to Relius he signals for the soldiers to stand in place and hold back , letting him approach Relius on his own, and unperturbed by the rank and file of NOl's soldiers. Seemingly of little concern to him.
"I am Leo Whitefang, third in command of the Order." he growls out, "Welcome to the Vatican. I see you have wasted little time..."
Ah, finally, his welcoming commitee.
Relius lifts up his palm into the air, striding forward as the rest of the squadron stays back... except of course Ignis. Even then, as Leo Whitefang gives up his escort, he motions for his wife to stay put. The construct obeys, hovering in place as Relius continues to stride forward. He finally meets in the middle, just two men, before the eyes of God in the heart of the Vatican. Relius is patient, looking up and down on Leo as he introduces himself. And Sage wastes no time responding.
"Only third in command... hmph!"
Relius says brightly, adjusting his white gloves. "Well yes, I do not wish to waste any time. I am Colonel Relius Clover, the head of the Novus Orbis Librarium Engineering Department. Oh, I suppose Novus Orbis Librarium is quite a mouthful of words for you; you can refer to it as the NOL. I am not sure if you even know why we are here, so I will be blunt. The Command Gear Dizzy, having been discovered here in Rome, surrendered herself to the NOL, and is now happily in protective custody." Relius gives a frown. "And if that was the end of it, I wouldn't even be here. This is hardly the most attractive place in Rome. So..." He scuffs his boot on the ground.
He gestures dismissively at the St. Peter Cathedral. "But as I have been informed, at the last minute of course, without any consultation, is that the creature actually made some demands of us before she surrendered, that we, the NOL, had to surrender our own information on some Illyria to the Sacred Order, as well as absolve you of your hideous crimes against magic and nature by keeping the little pet in your cages." Relius shifts his attention back to Leo, and he gives a smile.
"And now we are here, to give you exactly what she asked for~"
Leo listens. Patiently. A remarkable feat, some might note, considering what his temperament can be like at times. He hoods his eyes slightly as Relius' monolog continues and then he casts his eyes down towards the ancient stone that makes up St. Peter's Square as Relius scuffs his foot along it and then he looks back up the man and simply inclines his head while raising an eyebrow slightly.
"I see.." he rumbles, looking thoughtful and then looking over the men behind Relius. It all seems that this is news to him. Information given that he was unaware of or not privy to.
"I had no idea you had so little taste or appreciation of art and beauty." he muses, "I suppose NOL employing such classless and artistically dense individuals is to be expected in consideration of what behavior the last NOL member of some rank and authority I encountered demonstrated."
He rubs his jaw, drumming his fingers through his light beard as if letting this all sink in and then finally says, "I am aware of what has transpired... Relius ..is it? I thank you for the information but I should like to verify the status of the Command Gear for myself before any sort of exchange is made. I'm sure you -believe- you know what you are doing and -believe- you understand her but I assure you run the risk of undoing the great strides that were being made here with Dizzy with your blundering antics and ignorant blustering into matters you don't really grasp. I know you are a....uh..technician, was it? But..I think it would serve us all well to allow me a chance to see Dizzy for myself."
Certainly, Relius could have ignored it.
He could just have pretended not to hear Leo Whitefang direct a coarse and vulgur insult. Not just on his intelligence, but his taste. Certainly, it was an insult designed to start a conflict. To lash out against him. Relius was the better man here, after all, and he could simply pretend that the man had said nothing.
Except it was wrong.
"Please, you confuse ignorance with culture?" Relius corrects Leo Whitefang. "You have the Teatro dell'Opera di Roma! Galleria Borghese! Ancient history to cross through at your footsteps. And here, in the heart of Rome, you have..." And Relius actually sneers. "The patronage of popes looking to show off to one another while sauntering around their pretend religion with the invisible man in the sky. Really, it's almost insulting to see the works of some of the greatest artists and architects wasted on some make-believe imagination. Of course, I can understand how the Sacred Order has a long standing, almost provincial loyalty to the church." Relius's lets his sneer fade. "But yes, yes, I do not want to waste any time. Of course, on the matter of... oh, you call it Dizzy."
"Anyways, the Command Gear is currently perfectly safe. She has her own little garden, and even some pillows as I understand. I have not had the opportunity to meet her yet, but I am very... eager to do so." You could almost feel the soft pressure of his fingertips at those words. "As far as you seeing her.. that's not possible anymore, Leo Whitefang." He shakes his head. "She is NOL property, not yours. Of course, if you don't want our generous donation, I can be sure to tell the Command Gear. Certainly, she can appreciate how stupid it was of her to senselessly sacrifice herself, over the people she once considered her friends." Relius rubs his chin, a spark of curiousity over him.
"Maybe she can cry into Colonel Kagura's lap..."
"Technician Relius, please. You do not need to spout your jealousy over The Pope and the influence of The Church here at me. That is between you and him and I suppose God, should any of them be inclined to listen to something so trivial." Leo's voice is tired and dismissive, nearly cutting Relius off before the man has finished.
"As to ..yes..Dizzy.. 'property'? You say? This concerns me. She is no ones property. In one breath you acknowledge her ability to exercise free will by acknowledging that she willfully surrendered to you and brokered a deal that -your- organization with it and then within hardly the space of a breath you refer to her as property and scoff at the fact that she has a name she identifies as? What are you, juvenile? Again, the caliber of NOL's leadership gives me much reason to pause..."
He swells his chest slightly, clearly not budging, "You have given me more reason to doubt the sincerity of your efforts then to take them at face value. Again, I will speak to Dizzy myself to verify her current status and well being."
Leo inclines his head and says simply, "You will, of course, comply. There is really no need to debate. Telling Dizzy that the agreement has been refused is simply not an option as that will create a potential scenario that you do not have control over. You will also, of course, show me the information you have on Illyria, now, so that I can see what you have brought and determine its value."
Leo speaks. As far as he's concerned, it is so. He lifts a hand, gesturing for them to comply.
Relius tightens his hand into a fist.
His frown intensifies. And yet, he simply inhales, and exhales. This was a battle beyond simple physical violence. This was a battle of will, a battle of resolve, a battle of... false kindness. The sort that Hazama was a master at, and Relius was... merely an educated dilettante. And yet, every aside from Leo Whitefang was almost certainly a direct attack. He could just turn and walk away, and let this all stay behind.
But that would be admitting loss on a matter of mental comptency.
"She is our property, Leo Whitefang." Relius says with a terse chill. "She is the Command Gear that you decieved the proper United Nation authorities on. I would dare say, lie about. Just because she looks and even acts like a human, doesn't make her anymore than an artificial weapon, a Gear, a tool, crafted into the shape of a woman. So no, Leo Whitefang." Relius says firmly. "I will not comply. Is there a 2nd or 1st in command I could talk to?" The engineer says with a dismissive smirk.
"Someone... more important?"
Leo purses his lips, working his mouth as if chewing a hard piece of candy in slow motion. His face visibly tightens, the first sign of true aggravation here. It seems that them's fighting words. The last part at least.
"I am attempting to resist the urge to set the record straight and failing..." He rumbles, a deeply threaded lion's growl in his throat "The Sacred Order is supported by the Vatican -and- Interpol with authority and was brought into the war explicitly to attend to the situation with the Gears by the United Nations. Our decision on how to handle Dizzy and to keep the information from becoming public was -not- an issue of legality and strictly in our hands or would you care to elaborate on precisely what international law was broken and how war crimes were committed? Where I see it - no laws were broken and it is an internal matter between us and the U.N. We were containing and rehabilitating a sentient being."
Leo drums his fingers against his legs, against a pouch where his previous dictionary booklet is kept, "This newfound 'authority' the NOL has to ad hoc declare bounties and govern the actions of the supernatural is being tested to its limits. I highly suggest you watch your step. You have no idea how important I truly am.."
Leo raises both arms and folds them, "You will have to deal with me for now, Repairman Relius Clover. I will concede speaking with Dizzy another time but you must show me this information on Illyria you have brought and explain why this information requires a fully armed escort?"
"Colonel Clover, Leo Whitefang."
Relius's contempt was beginning to show through, his lips in a slight sneer. "And our authority is from a power higher than any other that -you- serve. As far as my steps stand, well." Relius taps his foot. "I think I am well aware of how important you really are. But, at least you are focusing on the most important matter." Relius looks down at his tiny pouch, almost chuckling at it's size. "Do you have anything to write this down with?"
"I think it would be important for you to take notes."
Relius snaps his fingers, as the construct advances forward. "As per the agreement, we at the NOL has generously offered our resources on this Illyria Dizzy wished for you to have. Naturally, there are books of course, lost tomes, carvings and engravings, you know, writings." Relius ons and ons, as Ignis lowers down the crate. "And naturally, we are pleased to hand over all such material. I am sure you must have a few literate folks here. But of course, our resources don't cease there, just in case."
There is almost a sinister gleam in his eyes as he gestures to the army behind him.
"We have in tow our scholars, our translators, and our archeologists with the materials, a team of NOL experts ready to assist you in every step of the way. And must assist you." Relius adds, with a hint of weight. "And naturally, with so much of our personnel on hand, we need an escort force to ensure their safety. Now I understand that you Sacred Order types have your own brute squad to settle any troublemakers, but well, obviously after your little mistake with the Command Gear, we have every reason to provide our own security. And of course, if you need to leave this site for any expeditions, we have every required right to mobilize their reservists to ensure that every member of NOL personnel is suitably protected." Relius's grin stretches across his face. "Are you keeping track of this, Leo?"
"It's an awful lot to go over~"
"Your authority means very little, in truth," comes the soft, French accented voice of one Ky Kiske. The blonde haired Knight strides of the shadows of an open doorway. He's in full on Sacred Order regalia, with his trademark white coat with the royal blue trim, and the black and blue cross shaped tabard fastened to his chest, and spilling down between his thighs from under the glistening silver buckle inscribed with the simple word "Hope".
"Your only authority is granted to you by the crumbling foundation of the UN, which, in and of itself is not, in truth, any form of true governing body, but a simple conference of allied nations. Seeing as the Vatican is a sovereign nation of its own, and its association with the UN is currently forfeit, you could say, in fact, that the UN has even less authority than its nominal "gentle suggestion" style authority it has before. And thus, the NOL has... well... zero authority in Rome, other than what Italy deigns spare it, and even less than zero authority on this sacred ground."
The Knight Errant strides forth proudly, one fingerless gloved hand resting on the hilt of his relic sword, Thunderseal. His boyishly handsome features look far too sharp and severe for his years, and the fire in those deep, azure eyes is an inferno of rage. A thunderstorm barely contained under a thin veneer of civility. His soft lips are drawn taut enough that the blood has left them, leaving them pale.
"So, before you start spouting off non-sense that involves words such as "war crimes" and "NOL Property", you would do well to remind yourself that you are not always the only intelligent person in any given room... Janitor Relius, was it?"
"My, my, my... no matter how well they dress, it seems that peasants will always be fools."
A voice drifts through the room, soft and wispy with no obvious source of origin as if the air itself is speaking. Though Ky would be unfamiliar with its owner, Leo would likely recognize the deceptively quiet feminine alto as belonging to the young officer with which he had quarreled some time ago. A subtle touch of cold runs across their skin as the magic carrying her voice dances around them, ruffling hair and clothing with a sudden breeze.
The sharp rap of hard heels on the stone floors announces the girl's presence before she steps into view, a faint smirk laced with arrogant amusement visible above the high neck of her elaborate greatcoat. She marches casually over to stand at the colonel's side, her arms folding neatly behind her back into a parade rest stance as she stares the knight commander down with crimson eyes.
Up close, her attire is even more ostentatious than Relius' fancy purple uniform. Masterfully crafted golden designs cover nearly every surface of the large coat with ornate decorations. Half a dozen buttons of polished gold run up the front of the folded center, standing out even more so than usual against the pitch black fabric. Bright golden epaulets drape from her shoulders and even the large hat, which looks like something a band conductor might wear, is plated with a golden lion's head radiating rays of light in a pentagonal design. Overall the outfit is clearly designed to impress, looking more like it belongs on the field of a military parade than any battlefield. Yet despite that, the heavy gauntlets that cover her lower arms up to the elbow and the thick metal bracing over her feet seems to indicate that for all its pomp, it most certainly has the ability to function as armor.
"You seem to have forgotten that your presence here is tolerated because the Church offered you sanctuary as guests. How then, I wonder, will the Vatican feel about the fact that you have been keeping a dangerous war machine within their holy places? A monster that you not only lied about to the international community but allowed to roam freely and unchecked."
Katarina's head tilts slightly to the side like a cat eyeing a mouse that it wishes to toy with. Her eyes sparkle with mischief and the chill that had brushed the two Sacred Order officers earlier comes back with a vengence as the mage increases her presence, bearing down upon their spirits with invisible force as if to add yet more gravity to her words.
"Do you think they will be so keen to continue their support of your organization when it comes to light that those explosions that demolished large portions of the city yesterday were brought about by that very same monster?"
"Yes, one might wonder indeed why a peaceful girl desperate to help others and show herself a valid citizen of the world despite what she's been through - might have been forced to unleash her powers and then has now mysteriously surrendered herself to the NOL without consulting with her hosts. I wonder what that investigation might uncover indeed." Leo's deep voice seethes with barely restrained vitriol as Katarina enters the scene.
"Again, need I remind you..,both.,,.that The Sacred Order operates under Interpol charter. We have jurisdiction in these matters.."
Leo cuts his gaze towards Ky briefly, acknowledging him and then looks back to Relius, "Well your wish is granted. You can attempt to reason with Sir Kiske but I doubt you will find his opinion on these matters much different from mine."
Leo cuts his gaze to Katarina and frowns a touch more, "So many important people here and with a full armed guard. Just to drop off some information... So fine. What of it then. The information on Illyria? That is why you came..remember?"
Did... Did someone seriously just call him... nobility by birth... a peasant? Moreover, as this... person comes into view, Ky's eyes tick to her. She keeps speaking, and with every single word she says, Ky's eyebrows lift just a fraction of an inch higher.
The Knight Captain of the Sacred Order offers just the vaguest hint of a wry smile in the direction of Katarina.
"Literally every word you just said was wrong."
"Now, if you do not mind, people who actually somewhat matter are having a very serious discussion about how very serious it is that the NOL has brought a military contingent onto the soil of a sovereign nation, which could be seen as a hostile invasion. Which, for the record, would be against the UN charter rules. So, please do mind your manners and remain silent," Ky admonishes Katarina, and then gives his companion Leo a nod of recognition for his own input on the matter.
"As Sir Whitefang has pointed out, we of the Sacred Order do, in fact, operate under Interpol, which actually has a real, true set of guidelines of jurisdiction. As far as the Church goes, we are a joint operation with them, not just guests. And I have been in deliberation with the Church since we have returned from our mission to Japan. They are very well aware of the situation with Dizzy, who is not, in fact, a war machine at all. In fact, it is avoiding that very fate that brings us to why she has been kept here, under the protection and guidance of the Holy See. After the immature and heavy handed demonstration of how the UN utilized Justice in Japan, it was determined that an innocent should not suffer the same fate. We will, simply put, not allow you, or anyone else, claim Dizzy as property, strap her into armor, and use her to blow up cities. This is my absolute final say."
"You will find there is a great number of important people here."
Relius had stayed silent with the arrival of the blonde haired commander. Certainly, there was a level of irritation. But above all, Relius's irritation serves the top point. As Katarina helpfully intervenes, Relius is not so outnumbered. "And you will find that the authority of the NOL transcends simple matters sovergnty. Besides." He sniffs. "To keep INTERPOL as politically neutral as possible, its charter forbids it, at least in theory, from undertaking interventions or activities of a political, military, religious, or racial nature or involving itself in disputes over such matters. I had -hoped- that the Sacred Order would have shared some of this before it decided to intervene with the nature of the rogue Command Gear, but..." A smile spreads across his face.
"I think that's a bit of a distraction from the Illyria detail."
"And YET!" Relius raises a hand up. "I can see that there is some degree of mistrust on the NOL keeping Dizzy in it's grips, well." Relius bows his head cheerfully. "I can promise that Dizzy will be treated as if she was a member of my own family. I will treat her like she was my own daughter, and that is a vow I hold on the highest honor!" Relius gives a bow.
"Will that satisify the knights, then?"
"No." Ky says. Flatly.
Leo leans forward, prepared to deal another verbal assault..but then Ky intervenes. Simple, to point, and sharp edged and Leo's words die on his lips leaving only an audible, "Hurk.." as he snatches whatever he was about to say backwards so as to avoid any contradicting of Ky. He instead just blinks and looks at him and then back to Relius, awaiting the NOL's response.
He did ask to speak to someone 'more important'. So here we go..
Relius frowns harshly.
"I hardly think you are being very reasonable. The Command Gear wanted all this, Ky Kiske." The Engineer declares. "It wanted to absolve all of you of your crimes, it wanted to anything to protect you all. It wanted to force us to give away our secrets to you. And now, it is happily and loving secured by the likes of Colonel Kagura, who is making sure she is -well- taken care of." Relius shakes his head. "Really, I think if you really cared for it, you would be grateful of how much she had been willing to give up for all of your sakes." Relius adjusts his gloves.
"So where shall we have my people set up, Ky Kiske."
Rather than get upset at being so casually brushed off, Katarina merely closes her eyes and takes a long deep breath that she then lets out with an exaggerated sigh. The colonel is swift to speak and brings up the obvious flaw in the knight captain's excuse for his organization's deceptive behavior. It's almost adorable how inept this man is, to bring up the matter of jurisdiction as if it were a shield when the very laws he invokes condemn his actions.
The young officer lapses into silence, allowing Relius to speak. He might very well take that as some sort of victory but she needn't even contradict his delusions of importance. It is only a matter of time before his foolishness is made clear.
"In order for there to be a crime, we would have had to break a law. Tell me what law did we break, again? We found a person who was in need of assistance, and we brought them back here to receive that assistance. You also try to twist my words into a declaration of what the jurisdiction of Interpol is, when, in fact, the only reason I bring up Interpol, and our relation to them is simply to point out that there is... you know... SOME jurisdiction, and actual authority there. Rather than the NOL who... are... what exactly again? A sort of unofficial research and detainment group who now believes that they have global authority to... invade nations, unlawfully detain people who have claimed sanctuary on holy ground, and put out bounties on people? Last I checked, offering to pay someone to kidnap or murder someone is a crime," Ky says, rubbing his chin thoughtfully.
"Secondly, if Dizzy wanted to absolve us of crimes, that meant that someone put it in her head, wrongfully, that we had committed crimes. As I have clarified, we did not. Which begs the question of who put that idea in her mind? Who coerced her? Dizzy has... a very innocent and childlike nature. She is easily misled, and that could be very easy to use to prey upon her."
Regardless, Ky Kiske shrugs his shoulders, and says, "It really doesn't matter. You are not going to be taking Dizzy. Let me make that exceedingly clear. It would be rather unfortunate if there were to be some sort of miscommunication of intent, here."
"Keeping her, that is..as....She's already gone thanks to their underhanded tactics.." says Leo, under his breath, though sharply, to Ky.
It is becoming clear to the lion maned great knight that he and Ky need a moment to converse alone but furthermore that this conversation will get them nowhere without some sort of sign that the SO will acknowledge the NOL in some capacity.
Leo is not nearly the optimist as Ky either. The charter of the SO may be clear in regards to their position within the International Police but he also knows that if placed under pressure the odds of Interpol throwing the SO under the bus where handling the Command Gear is concerned is...very high. They can only play that card for so long.
"Have your soldiers wait back out in Rome and remain there. You can 'set up shop' there so to speak. NOL does have some degree of global policing where Darkstalkers are concerned no? They can sniff out some Darkstalker trouble we've had of late." Leo suggests, "You, on the other hand, can deliver the information Dizzy turned herself in for so we can review it and determine its validity. -That- much should be afforded us as an organization that mutually deals with magic and the supernatural no? At that point we can .. 'finalize' what is to happen with Dizzy.. As gentlemen - and lady - of two auspicious Orders."
Acid practically burns the cobblestones from Leo's tone.
" Fair enough?"
His body language should be clear. This is it. Agree or get the hell out.
It also should be a sign to Ky. 'We need to talk'.
Katarina opens her eyes, the glint of predatory amusement still shining within her quiet gaze. Neither that hairy brute nor the over-inflated pretty boy seem to understand where they stand at this moment. Do they honestly believe they are immune to the consequences of the actions they have taken? Ky certainly seems to think so if his blustering bravado is sincere.
Though she remains silent as Leo speaks, the internal laughter is visible in the look Katarina gives him as the faint smirk slowly seems to grow in size. When he is done, the girl glances aside to her superior, putting on an overt expression of tolerance and patience. Though her words are directed at the colonel, it's clear from her tone that she is mocking the two knights and she makes no attempt to hide it.
"Sir, it would seem that their grasp of the situation is founded upon some rather... glib interpretation of the laws. I fear that our presence here has been misunderstood. Shall I enlighten them to the reality of the position they have put themselves in?"
"Tread..carefully..girl." warns Leo, clearly impatient, "These are matters that you've little say in. You're little more then a desperate pet tugging at the leash right now."
Ky's words seem to draw nothing but calm ire from the man.
Relius does let him speak his keep... as it becomes all too clear, that sadly, it seems that the NOL and the Sacred Order simply wouldn't be getting along. A pity. Relius had actually hoped Ky Kiske would be like Jin Kisaragi; they certainly looked close enough to be brothers. And yet... Well. As Katarina lashes out, Relius raises his hand.
"At ease, Katarina."
Relius says with some command. "I am afraid that your words would be wasted on the stubborn folk of the Sacred Order." He looks back at Leo, and grins. "But your... underling is correct, Ky Kiske. We have Dizzy. And you can't simply take her back like some upset toddler throwing a tauntrum. But I will be sure to share your words about her, Ky Kiske." The engineer says with a smile. "I just hope her heart won't be so cruelly broken as she learns about the true Ky Kiske... instead of the one she won't shut up about." Relius gives a short bow, before turning around, striding away. He snaps his fingers. "Come now; the Sacred Order has offered us hospitality outside the Vatican."
"Who are we to deny it?"
Leo's eyebrow twitches but he avoids taking the bait. "Our people will make sure your...entourage...are...well accommodated during your stay. " He eyes Katarina as he speaks but also subtly is slightly infront of Ky where she's concerned. If she only knew.
"And the information on Illyria?" asks Leo returns his baleful gaze to Relius as the colonel turns, "When can we expect it so to do a full examination and then get back to you? You -do- have ..valuable information that's made this all worthwhile..yes?"
Hearing that they've already taken Dizzy from this place, as well as the snide, ignorant words of the uneducated harlot, Kiske's eyes grow cold and dead. He says nothing, as the grip on the handle of Thunderseal grows tighter and tighter, until his knuckles strain the leather of his gloves. Very quietly, he says, "You have overstayed your welcome in this place. Should you return, Relius Clover, you would do very... very well... not to bring with you such degenerate filth. If she steps foot on these grounds again, any dealings between the Sacred Order and the NOL will be forfeit. As will be her life. Good evening."
With that, Kiske turns on his heels and stalks back towards the darkness of the corridor through which he emerged.
Though her smile does not falter, Katarina's eyes narrow sharply at Leo's warning, betraying her true feelings. After a moment or two of deliberation, she opens her mouth as if to offer some biting retort only to be cut off by Relius's sudden intervention. Glancing at the colonel again, she frowns slightly but inclines her head slightly and lapses once more into silence. Unlike the uncouth rabble of the Sacred Order, she possesses enough discipline to show a little restraint and decorum. That doesn't stop her from staring at him, her neutral expression somehow radiating enough animosity that it can actually be felt in the faint pressure that her aura continues to exert on the room's occupants.
When her commander turns to leave, Katarina follows suit. She smirks at Leo one last time as Ky unleashes his final outburst, clearly having won this round. She lifts a hand to flip her long waterfall of shimmering silver hair at him dismissively, both at Ky's threat and Leo's question. If Relius wants to bother offering an answer that's up to him but she finds it a delicious bit of infuriation to leave stewing in their wake.
His efforts to 'protect' her from Ky's wrath are as pointless as the captain's attempts to deflect responsibility for his actions. Even without his visible anger, she can hear the rampant melody of the man's soul, the turmoil in his heart brought about by this unexpected turn of events filling the air with a melody of wrath and pain. To her ears it is a thing of beauty, the Music Box's corruption turning his pain into a composition of exquisite pleasure. She relishes his anger, quietly wallowing in the raging emotion like a pig in mud.
She would love to stay and torment him further, continue to poke at the obvious weak-spot that they have revealed until he finally breaks. Being attacked by the leader of the Sacred Order himself would make their job so much easier. Alas, it is not to be this day. Instead, Katarina simply marches torwards the exit at a leisurely pace, trailing after the head engineer without any sense of hurry or fear.
Relius stops dead, beside his Ignis, who was already turning to follow. He snaps his fingers. "That's right, Leo! Thank you, I almost forgot." He clears his throat. "The information will be delivered to Biyu Zhou. Well. She can come retrieve it herself. I am certain an academic like herself would learn to appreciate a good book. And Ky Kiske?" Relius pauses a moment, not looking back to the man already leaving.
"I hope you only make promises you are commited to keeping, young man~"
And he strides through the army of NOL, his darling Ignis in tow.
Log created on 23:21:56 02/28/2018 by Relius, and last modified on 01:05:58 03/04/2018.