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File 160243551405.jpg - (759.04KB , 1470x2311 , Divergent 1.jpg )
978305 No. 978305 ID: 2bd15b

chapter 1 https://tgchan.org/kusaba/quest/res/757996.html
chapter 2 https://tgchan.org/kusaba/quest/res/777113.html
Discussion thread https://tgchan.org/kusaba/questdis/res/107070.htm
Chapter 4 https://tgchan.org/kusaba/quest/res/929115.html
Draw thread, where you can ask me to draw certain things

wiki https://tgchan.org/wiki/Root_and_Branches
405 posts omitted. Last 100 shown. Expand all images
No. 1000729 ID: e51896

*puts her hand on top of the others*
No. 1000775 ID: d63ea8

*The presence watches silently.*
No. 1000873 ID: 9fc89f

You in this too bud? Cuz what I’m seeing here, it’s a new word for you.

No. 1001027 ID: d63ea8

If that is the word this presence is offered,
Then that will be the word this presence will take.

*The presence adds its hand to the pile.*
No. 1001057 ID: 5329cf

Well I’m gonna give you one more.

No. 1001132 ID: 47be15
File 162152428396.jpg - (663.50KB , 1529x1124 , Divergent 69.jpg )

No. 1001133 ID: 47be15

No. 1001134 ID: 47be15
File 162152457054.jpg - (497.85KB , 1486x921 , Divergent 70.jpg )

This was more of a joke update, whatever you post I will not make an update in the story for it. But you are free to discuss what would be the best solution for that problem.

No. 1001136 ID: 5f4030

I got you.

>Scarred casts Altar Self, making the tattoo disappear.

The mark and the magic it gives me is still there but now it can’t be seen. If push comes to shove maybe me and Fortune can do a swap in-swap out kind of deal.
No. 1001473 ID: 47be15
File 162174564857.jpg - (1.19MB , 2668x3125 , Divergent 72.jpg )

Finally, we arrived at the epilogue of this part of the story. After this, there will be a short intermission and then we return to the investigation.

No. 1001474 ID: 47be15
File 162174569807.jpg - (238.21KB , 2338x731 , Divergent 73.jpg )

No. 1001480 ID: e51896

I have plenty of time. I'm listening.
No. 1001486 ID: f3eb46

*Sigh* Alright.
No. 1001539 ID: d9a59f

Also, maybe it’s the history geek in me coming out, but did you know the Titanic actually shot up signal flares and fireworks that were seen by a nearby boat? Normally these would have been used to signal for help, but some incompetents on the other ship just thought they were having a party.
No. 1001608 ID: 47be15
File 162186653591.jpg - (1.90MB , 3508x2775 , Divergent 74.jpg )

No. 1001618 ID: e51896

The hunter cooked the rabbit, and it was still conscious all through that as well...

but the rabbit healed inside the hunter's stomach since the Tortoise promised he'd heal from any wound no matter how severe, and messed with the hunter's insides. Poor hunter didn't even knew what hit him.

Either that, or he just got digested and was still conscious all through it, and the Rabbit would have probably became a conscious literal piece of shit

moral: even if you are immortal, you can still be in danger
No. 1001624 ID: 5f4030

Yeah that was my take a away too. Being immortal doesn’t mean your free from life’s pain. If anything, being immortal just means you will suffer through more pain in life.
No. 1001699 ID: 47be15
File 162195054137.jpg - (1.12MB , 3508x1859 , Divergent 75.jpg )

No. 1001703 ID: e51896

A pretty good fable. Will have to look up who the author is.
No. 1001728 ID: 5f4030

Ehhh, not particularly, it’s not a story I’d tell kids any time soon. I’ll stick to Aesop’s version of the tortoise and the hare if it’s all the same.
No. 1001801 ID: 47be15
File 162203183090.jpg - (654.82KB , 3084x1595 , Divergent 76.jpg )

Poltergeist Ethanoic Acid if you choose to remove your mask you are free to show me how you imagined your character to look or simply describe his features, that can work as well.

No. 1001823 ID: d05489

With all due respect, I apologize, but unfortunately, removal of my mask will result with a conflict of interest with one of the things Penelope from the Smiling Sinners ordered: stripping off my mask anywhere except my own room will be seen as sacrilegious in the Smiling Sinners' eyes and will result with Penny getting angry with me and having her entire group punish me, and I am not so much into BDSM, not my kink. So I'd rather not take that risk, I know my limits.

Penelope told me the Smiling sinners are already pretty angry with Anthony keeping his mask off in public everywhere as is, but can't really do anything about it because of his high position in the ranks as Root's prophetic artist.
I however can't get away with that with my lower rank.
No. 1001844 ID: f23235

Euuggh, don’t remind me. She comes across to me as horny for torture. She actually tried to whip me once but due to my status had let me go. I’ve never forgotten her saying she was upset because of “how much she needs this.” I think she’s just using her own position to force her kink on people, and I will endlessly kink shame her for it.

As for the mask thing, either do it or don’t. I have no issue with it.
No. 1001918 ID: 47be15
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No. 1001960 ID: f23235
File 162216931022.jpg - (721.14KB , 1175x2732 , 1575E2E5-403E-4B62-9BE5-60CF4F9E95DD.jpg )

Yeah yeah, here you go. And honestly, I’ve stopped being really that affected by people’s appearance. Strange and unusual people are just par for the course. I’d rather judge people by the strength of morality and character.
No. 1002423 ID: 47be15
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No. 1002424 ID: d63ea8

"You do know that one of the benefits of stealing these pictures is rubbing it in Anthony's face later on."

"Something that is ruined when you pass the picture over right in front of him."

"Not even ten second into our meeting and you're already disappointing me."

*Dervan looks over to Nathaniel*
"Oh look, the gimp is here too."
No. 1002439 ID: 5f4030

Wow, you’re rude as fuck, don’t insult my friends. And what do you mean “stealing” the picture. He asked me to make it for him and I agreed. If it came to you either way, what difference does it make how it got here?

Also Spikey, I hope you see the hypocrisy in your whole argument against Feasance. Saying I’m working with someone who isn’t human and can’t be trusted. You’re working with a walking wine-opener who openly talks about stealing stuff from me. Pot meet kettle buddy.

So, are we done here?
No. 1002440 ID: d63ea8

"My deepest apologies. Let me correct my statement."

*Dervan glances back over to Nathaniel*
"Oh look, the submissive is here as well."

"But back to matter at hand, I feel like you wouldn't have given this drawing your best effort if it was made out to me. Not that I'm besmirching your skill and creativity as an artist, but you do tend to fall into gluts of animosity."
No. 1002446 ID: 5f4030

Given who you’re working with, no. I don’t think I would have. And given the circumstances, I’d say the only thing you’ve earned is my animosity.

And you’re still rude as fuck, and I think I can add “gaslighting” to that tally as well. So, yeah. Fuck you.
No. 1002447 ID: d63ea8

"Come now, I'm trying to be diplomatic, aren't you one for fresh starts and new beginnings?"
No. 1002448 ID: 5f4030

Not with your crowd. Somethings I don’t forget, and I certainly don’t forgive. Are we done here?
No. 1002501 ID: e51896

Anthony, thanks for defending me, but honestly, I'm an adult. I can handle a few insults.

hm. I actually have something to say... Anthony, I kind of see Spikey as something as kind of like a king's jester, one that is harsh, insulting, and annoying, but brings up really good points to help a king rule their kingdom better by saying things the king's citizens would be too scared to say to their face.

And well... what I may say might severely disappoint you, Feasance and Anthony, but I think we should have trust in Spikey. For one, he wanted to introduce his boss, even ignoring strict orders to steal your picture, Anthony, and instead asking you for it which is a more honest way of doing things...

I mean, he even did warn you about a ghost dog haunting you, if you remember...

And that whole gift thing he gave you... I kind of want you to think about one thing to yourself... why did he give you that gift if it wasn't to help you. and if you didn't decide to give it to me, what moment do you think Spikey wanted you to use it for that could have helped you or someone else if I didn't have it, and you had it instead?

I mean, I'm not saying you shouldn't agree with all of Spikey's actions and what he stands for, but I think we should at least allow some trust between us and him... The world is full of weirdos anyway to the point of it being normal now.

The question about Feasance though... I believe he does bring up some important valid points. For one, she kind of just inserted herself into our lives... and what was it that she wanted Cleo to do, and why?

And of course that mask... Your right, Anthony, she shouldn't have a good reason not to remove it. I have a good reason not to remove mine, but Feasance could because of her position as the Carpenter's daughter... If its scars, or a monster behind it, it wouldn't really surprise us considering how we saw how the rest of the world is... Spikey did reveal who is employer was, its only fair she revealed her face as payment...
No. 1002504 ID: 5f4030

You bring up some good points, however the thing is, while I do believe Spikey may do things that help us, no one does anything around here for the good others and the sake of their happiness the lives of others. It’s either for some crazy idea and beliefs, or for themselves. I want to hold people to a higher standard than that. No exceptions.

As for Feasence showing her face, I honestly don’t care but there is something I do care about. What is it she wanted Cleo to do? If it is something that could result in her getting hurt, then I don’t think I could forgive that.
No. 1002517 ID: 47be15
File 162273035909.jpg - (2.02MB , 3508x1761 , Divergent 79.jpg )

No. 1002520 ID: d63ea8

"I'll let it slide this time Spikey. Just take this as a lesson on making assumptions."

"Besides, Anthony may be obstinate and rude, but it is our job as mediators to be better than that."

"And yes, my meeting hadn't gone as I had hoped, but I'm sure we'll be able to handle Anthony's eccentricities."

"Though as for your sister Spikey-"

*Dervan reaches into his pocket, produces a business card, and tosses it over.*
"-I am more that willing to lend out my consulting services when it comes to all things otherworldly and extradimensional. It's a complete freak show out there!"
No. 1002535 ID: 5f4030

I wouldn’t take it if I were you.

Yeah Spikey, I did want to meet him. Your boss would be an indication of your own allegiances. It would have saved us a lot of trouble if you were just told me who it was though, because here’s the issue, while DerVan himself isn’t the worst option for a boss, I don’t like him at all. But I can work around it, despite my eccentricities and despite his many facades.

And by the I don’t owe anyone my best side. It’s not eccentricities, it just brutal honesty. Sorry not sorry.
No. 1002679 ID: e51896

Hmm... refresh my memory, did you ever draw her, Anthony?

And also, as far as wearing a mask because you feel you don't belong is concerned... If you want my opinion, I don't think anybody belongs in this world... it feels like it was made to make us suffer, and has a standard of making normacy the new freak while freak is the new normal, so it shouldnt be a problem if you're too worried you don't belong and we'd see you as a monster if it is appearance you are worried about...
i guess the real concern with that in mind is that because we don't know what is under the mask, we won't know for sure if you are someone who had a reputation of being sinister or doing bad things that had harmed us in some way in the past, or working for someone really sinister and you want to hide your identity from us because kf that... either that, or your not Ms. Feasance at all, but someone disguised as her trying to fish for information...

and if you're someone who has hurt us in the past, and want forgiveness but are too afraid to ask and instead created a new identity to live a new life, worried you might reveal your identity that you are someone who had hurt us then, why not ask for forgiveness?

Also, Anthony, I'll just say that it probably isn't a good idea to view everyone as pure good or pure bad, and see things in only black and white. Otherwise you'd hold everyone in too high of a standard. Everyone i've found have their reasons to act the way they do, and well, with the state of how everything is, maybe we should try to look for the good in people instead of focusing on just the bad... yeah? Nobody here is a saint. I honestly can get behind the never forget attitude you said you have, but understand that I don't follow that "never forgive" mindset...
No. 1002756 ID: 47be15
File 162298578501.jpg - (2.30MB , 3508x2060 , Divergent 80.jpg )

No. 1002780 ID: c41d93

*eye roll* the only ugly thing I see is how one sibling treats another.

Inner thoughts: And as for looking like demon he looks more like a Victorian caricature of a fool in some penny dreadful play.
No. 1003047 ID: e51896

I'll just give you this warning to consider then: The harsh reality is that with the state of things in this world currently, life doesn't care if you're not ready for something, nor if you need time to come to terms with things in order to feel comfortable doing something... do you think that people outside of our group were ready when the fog just suddenly appeared and took many lives for example?

I'll just say that whatever goals you want to pursue, especially whether it be to confront someone, or gain power, you better consider that there will be a lot of moments where you won't have any time to prepare when something unexpectedly terrible happens, sometimes in rapid succession, and you'd be forced to be taken out of your comfort zone during all those times.

Get a stronger resolve, that is my advice to you, Ms. Feasance... Take of that what you will.
No. 1003092 ID: d63ea8

My dear employee is correct, these horns are fake and the demonic appearance is a bit of an act, but I assure you it is for my client's benefit.

If I just approached them with regular suit and tie then they might underestimate the wider scope of the dimensions around them. To bargain with me is to bargain with power. A power that transcends their world, and I as a broker don't judge my clients.

If I say... dressed myself up as an angel, then people would dismiss me for being sanctimonious. It'd be bad for business.

I am here to offer my services, regardless of my client's background or motives, and to give them my support without the need for moralistic judgements.

*DerVan gives a nod to Ms. Feasance.*

And of course, if you wanted to try your hand at greener pastures then I'm sure that we can come to some form of arrangement. I have been toying with the idea of entering the travel agent business.
No. 1003094 ID: 5f4030

Heh. You know now that I think about it, we actually had a pretty good deal. Your employee gave me something in a rather… Unorthodox method, but I consider it a pretty good trade all things considered. That is unless you can verify what he gave me as the real deal in exchange for my services. Mind giving me a written and signed document verifying the deal? Think of it like writing a receipt, don’t want false goods and all.
No. 1003155 ID: 47be15
File 162341497945.jpg - (2.46MB , 3508x2015 , Divergent 81.jpg )

No. 1003239 ID: e51896

Hm... If Anthony or ms feasance is not going to take the card, then I guess I will ask if I can have one, please.

So in what ways were you responsible for what happened to this world, feasance? I should also mention that there are people out there who actually feel the fog had actually saved their lives, so trying to better the world in one way like you want might actually be seen as destroying it in another person's eyes. Keep that in mind.

And Spikey, why do you think she can't change her ways? in what ways can she redeem herself in your eyes... without involving her killing herself of course?
No. 1003437 ID: cb5572

I'm interested in this too. I'd like to know what really created all this animosity to begin with. I know you two are the children of the Carpenter, I actually did a portrait of him a while ago, Feasance I know you're a teacher, and Spikey you just kinda do your thing... But I don't really know that much about why you guys do what you do.
No. 1003467 ID: d63ea8

A resolute choice Ms. Fearance, but feel free to contact me if you do change your mind.

And of course Nathaniel, I am more than willing to extend my services to you as well.

*Dervan flicks another card through the portal.*
No. 1003567 ID: 47be15
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No. 1003568 ID: c41d93

*sees her go down*

Jesus H. Christ man, I’m not worried about seeing her face at the moment and the way you implied that feels like it would be some kind of sexual assault! If this was that triggering where it brings her to having a damn seizure who cares about her face?
No. 1004228 ID: e51896

Hmm... I am going to be blunt, but I really don't have faith in her if she is going to faint like that especially if she plans on trying to save this world. Honestly, unless she can learn to keep a level head, she is going to lose her life. Right now, I see her as weak. again, I apologize for being blunt, but sometimes, the truth hurts. She needs to get stronger, there's no question about it...

And I'll be lying if I said I didn't want to remove her mask right now, because right now, I am really curious. Honestly, if we really want to know what is really going on behind the scenes with the acolytes of the ash tree who are higher up in the ranks like Lorence, or the Carpenter, and if you really desire to take them down, Anthony, then removing her mask and revealing the truth might be the only opportunity to find out what they had in store for her and maybe get her the help she needs...

I would try to remove the mask myself, if only to see what our superiors are keeping secret from us, but I just know you're going to stop me, so I won't do it unless you change your mind Anthony. But just know that sometimes it's better to do something you'll regret now but gain something out of it than to regret it later when it is too late.


like this matter with Dervan. Well, what I want from Dervan might seem pretty bland and boring in comparison to what others would want to make a deal with the devil with... Rightfully so since people tend to find me boring. But what I want isn't even for me to begin with, but moreso for Anthony.

what I desire is nothing more than the ashes of an Ana. From what Anthony and I was told, Ana was killed, gunned down by several bullets, and then cremated in this timeline.

I remember Anthony telling me all about her in his dreams pretty much every day to the point where it became an annoyance. And while I really could care less about Ana as I don't know her, I do know that ever since Anthony heard she died, Anthony was never the same again emotionally. He's traumatized.

He wanted to hold a funeral for her, but never got the chance to because he never got access to her body to give her a proper sendoff. So I would like to request you, Dervan, to transfer to me Ana's ashes directly to me so that I may give it to Anthony in the future, if only to give him closure on that chapter in his life. If for whatever reason you can't get this timeline's Ana's ashes, then any other Ana's ashes from another timeline will do.

But I believe with your services you take great pride in, I have faith you will accomplish this one simple task for me without issues, correct?
No. 1004232 ID: f1e7f7


Fuck you man, that’s cold. Look I appreciate the help, I do. But I don’t want you helping me out of some sense of pity for me, or because I’m “traumatized.” Everyone handles grief and trauma differently, I’m still coping, and what happened when I get emotionally scared or vulnerable, I see things okay? It’s kind of like schizophrenia, and it’s why I got withered Ace, Victoria, she helps keep me grounded.

Look here’s the deal. For me, Ana was an example of how a person should be, especially in times like this. Right now, I’m not focused on what my “enemies” are doing, I don’t want to have enemies. All I’m concerned about is Feasance and her own well being. When I learned Ana died, it hurt a lot because it was like someone who I looked up to had just vanished, and by the sound of things she caved in the end, because it was just too much. But what if she had help? Could it have been any different? Just knowing that there was someone willing to help her when she needed it? Why is no one willing to do the right thing anymore? Why is everyone choosing to be a one-man island? Everyone just wants to take for them and theirs. I’ve seen what happens when others just stop taking each other for granted, and actually swallow their pride. Amazing things happen, heroic things. Nathaniel, I know you’re capable of those kinds of small miracles, you showed it to me when I was suffering, Ana did the same for others too she tried so damn hard to for it, why is this moment any different?

Is walling yourself off supposed to make you stronger? Or more emotionally mature? Or does it just make you more numb? People have had enough suffering, enough for a thousand lifetimes. When can we start healing?

So Nathaniel I put it to you then, is it better to earn someone’s trust to where they would show you what you want to learn, out of their own free will? Or do you go behind their back and just take it? I’m not thinking out of necessity, I’m thinking, what is the good and right thing to do here?
No. 1004554 ID: d63ea8

"Of course my dear Nathaniel, such a task is easily within my capabilities, in fact..."

*Dervan pulls out a sealed urn.*

"I happen to have those ashes on me right now. I was planning on delivering this to a gaggle of idiots I am overseeing, but I think you can put these remains to better use then they ever could."

*Dervan holds out the urn to Nathaniel.*

"We can discuss payment at a later date, unfortunately my schedule is requiring me to be elsewhere soon. But I'm sure you'll be good for it if I extend this as a line of credit. Take it as a sign of good faith."
No. 1004602 ID: 47be15
File 162510596442.jpg - (1.53MB , 2980x1760 , Divergent 83.jpg )

First of all, let's all give a rousing applause to Door who portrayed DeRvan. You even manage to give me a couple of curved balls while playing that character and I hope you had fun being in the role of him in the first place.

No. 1004622 ID: e51896

The thing about me, Anthony, good and bad are two sides of the same coin, and I try to balance those two sides with what I do. I realize that while we should strive to do the right thing, sometimes, there are moments where one is reuqired to have to do something evil. There is such a thing as being too good, just as there is such a thing as being too evil. But overall, we shouldn't try to have our actions dictate or label who we are. Despite everything I do, I know who I am, and I'm still the same person deep down.

Which is why I had to be harsh there with my opinions of Ms. Feasance. While I'll respect your wishes not to remove her mask, my opinions remain the same: If she wants to save this world, She needs to learn to cope with her inner demons, or else she will not survive out there if she is just going to faint easily like that, which is why at this moment, I would not trust her with my life.


Thank you for the ashes, Spikey. Wish I could have thanked Dervan, but I understand he was busy. I will for now keep it somewhere safe and secure.

Though I must say, Anthony, please do not tell Ms. Feasance that I got you Ana's ashes. I know you highly respect Ana, but from what I heard, Feasance actually doesn't share your opinion. She actually despises Ana from what I heard, as well as the voices she follows, and whoever Essence is. Letting her know you and I have Ana's ashes is not going bode well. Which is why after we talk about Lorence and his heart here, I'm going to leave with the ashes before Ms. Feasance wakes back up so she doesn't inquire about the ashes I'm holding.

Please proceed with the discussion of Lorence and his heart, Spikey.
No. 1004659 ID: 5f4030

*shudders and cringes at the name of Essence*

I know who she is. We've... Met.

*grumble* did not want to stick my dick anywhere near that crazy bitch *grumble*

Ughh... *shudder in disgust*

Yeah okay let's get on with this.
No. 1004713 ID: 47be15
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No. 1004723 ID: 5f4030

*looks at the doll in disgust.*

Yeah she came to once and tried to seduce me, literally ripping my clothes off. I ran away pretty much naked and with my tattered clothes covering my junk. Never been so embarrassed ever, ended up running right by Delilah trying to escape who yelled "Where you streaking off to pretty boy!" So yeah, I got cat-called into damn near being sexually assaulted. Also, you do know she's dead right?

As for Lorrence, I figured it wouldn't be that easy as just taking a knife to the heart. All that would do is make him vulnerable. Any ideas where we should start looking?
No. 1004756 ID: 47be15
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No. 1004778 ID: 5f4030


I want to be someone who does the right thing. Someone who isn't afraid of the dark, and someone who stands against the idea of what this cult believes, that being human is a flaw, or that everyone is bad so you might as well take as much as you can, that you look out for yourself first.

I've never believed that crap. Basically, all I want to is to be a good man in a world gone mad.
No. 1004928 ID: 47be15
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No. 1004951 ID: bc9acc

Actually despite acting creepy he actually hasn’t done anything here. He DID threaten to blow me up a while ago but given that I’m starting to get a feeling of this guys M.O. I suspect it was just some kind of unfunny joke. I still haven’t forgotten that one, Spikey and it still wasn’t funny. Get better material. So the only thing you could get him on is threats and possibly assault but even then I don’t want to press charges. I don’t like Spikey, but this is unnecessary at this time.

This is how you be a good man, you be honest and keep your word. And maybe forgive an enemy if you can.
No. 1004952 ID: bc9acc

Tell you what though, let’s just clear the air. Why the hell do you two want each other dead? This is just creating more bad blood, we’re talking this out now. Because I’m willing to bet money that if I help Spikey, Feasance will feel betrayed, and vice versa. I’m not doing that. We’re having this out now. Why is there so much bad blood? We’re talking this out.
No. 1005014 ID: 47be15
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No. 1005018 ID: 5fd914

I accept.

And actually no, she came to me. If anything I just consider her a friend. In order to get closer to Godfrey and everyone, all I had to do was pretty much exactly what I’m doing now with you and her, just be myself and be honest. I went to them and we just became friends. I was really looking for people who I had believed could qualify as human. It’s the same reason I let you go, I think there’s more to you than let on, and I want to help heal that rift between you and your sister. I just don’t want to see either of you dead, especially by each other’s hands
No. 1005203 ID: 47be15
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No. 1005204 ID: 47be15
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I am sorry for not having the time to finish the update for the next part of this chapter. But to make one thing clear this is the continuation of the investigation and all characters that come with it.
No. 1005251 ID: 47be15
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No. 1005274 ID: 5f4030

I suppose “unimpressed” might be a better term, as well as irritated with some of our… “colleagues” on this investigation team.
No. 1005276 ID: e51896

Admittedly, getting a whole bunch of vaccinations before traveling to this place was kind of an unpleasant experience, but necessary to not catch diseases from other agents from other universes. And I'm still trying to process the fact that I am actually so far away from the universe where my god resides, but other than that, my destined path lead me here with a responsibility to fulfill and I will accept it.
No. 1005366 ID: d63ea8

Inner Thoughts: Discard the subtext of Corax's statement, it's likely directed and Dervan more than anyone else. Focus on your composure.

*Threshold sighs and squares his shoulders.*

Inner Thoughts: There is still a small chance that Larry's questions are meant to test your current conviction, especially since there was likely a report filed due to Dervan's conduct. This could be an attempt at damage control. Be honest, but do not be too open.

"The fact that there are other dimension does not bother me in the slightest. Due to the station of my family, I was given... lessons... before being assigned to this team."

Inner Thoughts: And those were only building upon the ones father had already ingrained into your life. Agree with the overt elements of Corax's statement, let his words mask your true thoughts.

"As Corax put it, there has been issues of conduct in regards to some of the team. But if such elements were ironed out, I certainly see our performance improving as a result."

*Threshold then folds his hands behind his back.*
No. 1005404 ID: 47be15
File 162608793046.jpg - (3.20MB , 3508x2991 , Divergent 91.jpg )

No. 1005439 ID: 5f4030

Funny, I thought you looked like some kind of fop and a dandy, as everyone around here does. You however, excel at bad fashion taste, especially with that ugly hat. And if we’re really judging based on appearances, you’d be better off with the mask than our newest companion here. Also your nose is quite red now that I look at it. Been snorting illegal substances? Or perhaps it’s from blushing at having your face in the pillow as you bite it, perhaps that’s it, a pillow biter. Nothing wrong with that of course, my cousin is one of them.

Honestly, if you’re going to just come in here and insult me based on appearance, try harder. I’ve dealt with too much of this nonsense from others already, and I don’t need it from you either.
No. 1005465 ID: d63ea8

Inner Thoughts: Intercede, now.

"C-corax please. That isn't -uh- how we a-are meant to speak to -um- new colleagues."

Inner Thoughts: Appeal to reason, otherwise Corax will push back.

"You and -uh- Mr. Peregrine were s-selected for this investigation due to the -um- skills and perspectives you both bring to the -er- table. If M-mr. Triumphant has hand selected another partner for us to -um- work with t-then they must trust in the fact that it was for a -uh- good reason."

Inner Thoughts: Paint it as a misunderstanding, have it be no one's fault.

"I'm sure our new -er- investigator here meant no harm with their -uh- statement. It could -um- easily b-be an issue with the -uh- translator."

Inner Thoughts: That isn't true, but lean into it. Draw the conversation back to the exercise. This is a discussion on perception and appearances.

"O-our investigation may -uh- take us to places were others might judge purely on -um- appearance. And -er- depending on what we add or -uh- remove..."

*Threshold gives a nod towards Larry before continuing:*

"... we might be s-seen as someone or -uh- something different."

Inner Thoughts: And Corax doesn't give off the most friendly -or even stable- aura. And the new investigator might have picked up on that.

*Threshold fidgets.*

Inner Thoughts: This provocation may have been a test of Corax's defenses, and he failed. Remain attentive, but try to smooth this over nonetheless.

"Perhaps -uh- more formal introductions are in order."

*Moving towards the figure on the couch Threshold extends a hand.*

"My name is -um- Threshold Glorious, it is good to make your acquaintance."
No. 1005472 ID: 5fd914

Of course, sir. *nods respectfully and goes over to a tea tray*

Would you like a cup, sir? I feel I would appreciate one.
No. 1005538 ID: d63ea8

*Threshold nods.*

"-uh- y-yes please."

Inner Thoughts: And like that he's back to being curt and restrained. Your initial guess at military training may have been an accurate one. Whenever you exercise authority Corax responds with 'sir.' Might be something to add to your notes later. Right now you need to answer Larry's question. If you fail to respond he may draw his own conclusions, and they might end up more accurate that you would prefer.

*Turning his head over to Larry, Threshold says:*

Inner Thoughts: Be vague. A lie will get caught and a half-truth will get picked at.

"It is a -er- interesting experience, seeing all of these -uh- people of v-various shapes--um I mean- various walks of life. Most people have been upfront w-with their -er- thoughts and f-feelings so... I haven't really noticed the -uh- mask issue."

Inner Thoughts: Not the wisest statement to end on, but not a lie either. It's true that you haven't given much thought to 'permanently wearing a mask,' but that's because you have already worn one all your life. Honesty is a weakness, and every weakness is a tool for someone else to exploit. Dad was sure to hammer that into you. Every perceivable flaw must be filed down until it's a mirror's sheen. Otherwise you'll get eaten alive. Move to the next question, put the focus on him so he might miss your comment.

"A-as for your mask -um- Larry. I'd say that the smile is -er- fitting. You seem l-like a kind person, and I'd think even a f-fake could reflect that."

Inner Thoughts: A bit of a hollow compliment, but it is something you hope to be true. Though, the smile does serve a more practical purpose. A blank mask would have you infer emotion onto it, and such assumptions might make you miss more subtle details, better to have a fake smile that might clash with Larry's words or actions, you should be able to parse the inconsistencies. Also keep Corax in your peripherals. It's unlikely that he'd do anything to the tea, but... better to cautious than surprised.
No. 1005542 ID: 5fd914

Milk and sugar, sir?
No. 1005557 ID: d63ea8

Inner Thoughts: Is he trying to probe at your background? Probably not, disregard that thought.

"N-no thank you."
No. 1005588 ID: 5fd914

Very good sir. One for you Peregrine? *preps two cups one with sugar and one with out.*

Here you are sir.
No. 1005596 ID: e51896

Appreciated, but no thanks, we're on the clock. I'll have tea time later.

To answer your question, i feel there is a reason why we are required to have our faces look like tools and objects to other people. So i accept it as a necessity which influences and pushes us towards what our purpose in our life is, and where we will be in the end of our life.

And you can keep the mask on if you want, or remove it. Do whatever you like.
No. 1005599 ID: 5fd914

*sips tea*
I am of the same mind as my colleague. It matters not what you look like in the end. We came here to complete a task set to us. The appearance of the team assembled shouldn’t matter. Right? *stares at the spork man with narrowed eyes before turning away, bored.*
No. 1005607 ID: 47be15
File 162635838328.jpg - (2.45MB , 3508x1954 , Divergent 92.jpg )

No. 1005610 ID: d63ea8

Inner Thoughts: Play the diplomat, recontextualize both of their words in a way that both parties find agreeable. Breathe first.

*Threshold takes a slow breath and blows on his tea.*

Inner Thoughts: There. Now, show that this as an issue or timing, rather than personality.

"Thank you Ms. Algich for you're openness, and I apologize for our team's lukewarm reception. Unfortunately Mr. Glasshrauder was one the first figures we encountered during our investigation and has left us a little wary of new faces."

Inner Thoughts: Now focus on the merits.

"As you say, Mr. Corax did put himself in harm's way to protect the person we were interviewing, and was -uh- b-badly injured as a result. Seeing as he had r-received those injuries from our direct superior, it is understandable that he'd have a more -um- muted view of the world."

Inner Thoughts: A white lie. It's far more likely that Corax's worldview stems from a far worse encounter. You saw him stabbed, beaten, shocked and drugged; Corax didn't even bat an eye. No amount of 'training' can prepare you for that, so that only leaves a few other options... Move to his willingness to adapt.

"I'm sure that once we get the chance to work alongside one another things should smooth out. I humbly ask for your patience and understanding Ms. Algich as we move forward."

*He takes a sip of the tea and winces.*

Inner Thoughts: Erg. Bitter.
No. 1005611 ID: d63ea8

Inner Thoughts: Set the tone for the discussion, avoid criticism, even of Dervan for now. As their evaluator anything you say could be seen as open season for the others, and that would reflect poorly on both your conduct and your position of authority within the group.

*Threshold turns to Larry.*

"I think we have the foundations of a good team. Mr. Peregrine has shown himself to diplomatic, a team player, and very knowledgeable in a variety of fields. When forced to work on his own Mr. Peregrine quickly established a rapport with our subject and was able to pull a number of strong leads from the subject. As for Mr. Corax, he demonstrated the ability to remain focus and level-headed under even the most strained of conditions. His more-"

Inner Thoughts: Practical.

"-practical perspective of the world of the allows him to see past the tactics other might employ against him. Beyond that he is quite resolute in his station -and as seen- is more than willing to put himself at risk in the defense of others."

Inner Thoughts: A bit flowery, but it should do. It's not an accurate reflection of the notes you've taken, but you need to tread carefully around Algich, she's far more perceptive than her first impression would let on.

"Unfortunately I have not had the chance to meet with Mr. Triumphant face to face, but going off of reputation he seems to be a very accomplished investigator in his own right."

Inner Thoughts: He was able to meet with father without scheduling an appointment months in advance. Meaning he's a big deal.

"And seeing as we are still being acquainted with Ms. Algich, I'm not sure if I'll able to offer much commentary beyond my eagerness to work with her."

Inner Thoughts: Now for the hard part. Weigh each word before speaking.

"Mr. Glasshrauder had an... unorthodox way of communicating with the team-"

Inner Thoughts: Sidestep the incidents, defer to the reports.

"-and I'm sure that the report from both the stenographer and on-sight d-doctor would provide a more complete view of what transpired."

Inner Thoughts: And now for the conclusion.

*Threshold clears his throat.*

"Regardless, I believe due to the actions that each of us took the team has gotten stronger overall,-

Inner Thoughts: Truth.

"-we've gotten a better understanding of how each of us operate as a group,-"

Inner Thoughts: Mostly true.

"and that we've fostered a great deal of trust with one another."

*He then takes another sip of tea.*

Inner Thoughts: Lie, but that's not anything on them. 'Trust' requires you to understand what action each of them will take provided the correct stimuli, your still in the initial mapping of their profiles, those gaps in your notes will lead to unpredictability. You will have to correct this as soon as you are able.
No. 1005650 ID: 5fd914

Hahaha! Not so much a fop, but a thespian, I’m impressed. Though I would advise you to mind your tongue good lady. You may find it gets you in worse trouble than with someone who would merely enjoy an engagement in harsh banter. And really, a children’s cancer ward? I wasn’t aware one was around; a cute answer, but I suspect it is merely smudged makeup. And given your answer, I would not be surprised if you had a background in theater. Nevertheless, I am interested to see what you can bring to the table, madam.

As for my compatriots here, Mr. Glorious and Agent Peregrine, I have only respect. Peregrine is succinct and matter of fact in his deductions, to which I am most grateful. He has shown himself to be good man of faith, but such does not get in the way of his duties.

Mr. Glorious here, though perhaps a bit green has a well seasoned mind in reading emotions and people’s character. It can be perhaps misguided at times but such is only telling a lack of experience. That in of itself is not however a bad thing, only that when he gets it all down, he will be a force to be reckoned with. I respect him as our chosen leader for this assignment and am confident in his abilities as such.

As for our superiors, I have mixed feelings about them.

Triumphant is a determined man, and I believe he does his best with the choices he is given. His choice of companions is… Bizzare, but to each his own. I trust him as a competent man of action and belief. If there was one man I’d put on top to do the right thing, it would be him.

Dervan on the other hand… *Sips tea before setting it down and pulling out a small hand written notebook* This is an account of all his multiple misconducts I and my compatriots have seen during our time spent before and during the investigation and interrogation of our newest staff member. Such infractions include *opens note book and clears throat*
- multiple accounts of fraud and dissent
- interrupting an officer in/during the line of duty
- assault and battery of an officer in/during the line of duty
- attempted 1st degree murder
- attempted murder/assault and battery of a suspect while in custody

Understand, this is not personal, sir. As much as I detest him entirely, my personal feelings do not matter. This is merely part of my duty as officer and investigator of this department to see that our efforts come to a successful conclusion. If he seeks to undermine and disrupt our efforts further, I ask that he be disciplined, removed from office, and any and all criminal charges pressed immediately. I am aware of his legal status may keep him from an arrest but enough that his time spent with court proceedings will keep him away from our investigation.
No. 1006087 ID: e51896

I find Dervan to be harsh, but fair. I respect him and I think he is important to the team with his mind games on our opponents. I dont share the same thoughts as Corax on Dervan and would rather not have Dervan reprimanded. He has his own way of getting things done effectively.

Triumphant I havent worked much with Triumphant yet, but he seems to have a handle of things, anf already have ideas. I look forward to working with them in the future.

Corax... kind of a loose canon, but I feel he can get the job done with his bravery.

Threshold is good mannered, and seems to have a lot on his mind, since I see him thinking a lot. Could be very good to have someone like him think logically in a lot of thing.
No. 1006097 ID: d63ea8

*Threshold quietly sips his tea.*

Inner Thoughts: Something about Corax's words seems to make your skin crawl. Your not sure how to describe it. Maybe it's the force behind his laugh, or how his words seem entirely alien to what you've seen thus far. Is this just a side of him you haven't seen yet?

*Threshold glances at Corax, but then quickly goes back to staring at the floor.*

Inner Thoughts: No. Not even remotely, that underlying edge of raw... that danger is still present. This isn't so much a wolf in sheep's clothing as it is a wolf wearing a sheep's skin. It's as though there is a disconnect within him that- discard that thought for now, speculation without a proper foundation will lead to wrong conclusions, work on what is observable. The pointed language is still there, though Corax has put in effort to make it more 'civilized,' likely for your sake, but the effect still comes across as uncanny to you.

Corax: "Mr. Glorious here, though perhaps a bit green has a well seasoned mind in reading emotions and people’s character. It can be perhaps misguided at times but such is only telling a lack of experience. That in of itself is not however a bad thing..."

Inner Thoughts: You seemed to have gained Corax's respect, whether you keep it or not remains to be seen. While he does note your lack of experience, he does not underestimate you. But it may be more in his nature to not underestimate anyone. His compliments is not empty, which is good, but unlike Peregrine you still haven't fully gained his trust. Or at least the amount of trust he is usually willing to give.

Corax: "Understand, this is not personal, sir. As much as I detest him entirely, my personal feelings do not matter. This is merely part of my duty as officer and investigator of this..."

Inner Thoughts: Not a direct lie, but not entirely honest either. There is an undercurrent to Corax's actions. This is a personal matter, Dervan saw to that, but it is... unlikely that Corax act on a personal vendetta, his discipline wouldn't allow it. He wants to do this buy the book, but you think that if Dervan were to endanger the integrity of the investigation, Corax might take matters into his own hands.

Peregrine: "I find Dervan to be harsh, but fair. I respect him and I think he is important to the team with his mind games on our opponents. I don't share the same thoughts as Corax on Dervan and would rather not have Dervan reprimanded..."

Inner Thoughts: Peregrine isn't just being polite like you are, he does believe what he is saying. You can't help but think of the words he said previously:

'Threshold, when I read through the case files, and was told about the mission we are going to head into, it made me realize that this mission is going to require everything we've got and all our endurance. The stabbing isn't just about dominance over us, it is about taking a job that we are going to need to bleed for and even sacrifice for in order to succeed, one which if we are not careful could destroy our spirits. A mission in which is required to get our hands dirty for.'

He sees Dervan's action as tests, or more accurately, trials. There is always a spiritual element to his words and actions. You're not sure if this is a post-event rationalization or-

Peregrine: "Threshold is good mannered, and seems to have a lot on his mind, since I see him thinking a lot. Could be very good to have someone like him think logically in a lot of thing."

*Threshold looks up and gives a sheepish smile.*

Inner Thoughts: Your not in the interrogation room anymore, you need to keep up outward appearances. Of the two Peregrine is the more likely to get a good read on you. Engage in the conversation, maintain eye-contact, wear the mask.

*The smile broadens.*

"T-thank you, Mr. Peregrine. I will -uh- try to help as best I can."
No. 1006099 ID: 47be15
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No. 1006107 ID: 5f4030

Again madam, such words you banter with me. Words that in the ear of the wrong person, may imply great bodily harm. And as for my mother, *eye roll* bless her poor old withering heart to have to bury her only son.
*smiles like someone who’s just won a hand at poker* and I knew you had a theater background. The play’s the thing, and here we all are walking in shadows, poor players that struts and frets our hour upon the stage and then is heard no more.

*sips tea*

And as for the idea throwing a chair at dart board, an apt metaphor to be sure.

Inner thoughts: I’d like to follow the rules as planned but when results are needed, I am there to act.

I’m glad Mr. Dynamo places such trust in you. I believe I can also trust you in not leading our golden boy here astray, yes?

Now, if I may enquire, what is to be done about Dervan. I do
not share the idea that he is a man worth of respect,
Inner thoughts: I’ve yet to meet a single lawyer who is. In fact…
I understand that Dervan himself is a lawyer by trade, to my own knowledge, working pro Bono is something they rarely ever do, mostly out of a sense of civic or moral duty. Regardless, I’m curious, does he represent a single client in this organization? Or more the organization as a whole? With all due respect to those in the legal profession, usually their job is to keep those guilty of committing crimes from ever seeing justice. Hence why his impediment of our investigations do not seem more as trials or tests, and more him trying to keep us from doing our duty.
No. 1006123 ID: d63ea8

*Threshold pauses momentarily when the name Dino Dynamo is brought up.*

Inner Thoughts: Don't freeze.

*He sips more of his tea.*

Inner Thoughts: Still, that is... worrisome. It seems that Dad read the report and decided to give you a minder. The stenographer must've caught the fact that you were muttering to yourself like an asylum patient. Such conduct would 'unbecoming' of the office...


Inner Thoughts: That or he wants you to send a report covertly. Or you've failed to meet expectations. Or he's having another affair. Probe lightly, keep in the conversation.

"I-" *ahem* "I -um- imagine you were p-picked for this position for more than just your -uh- categorization skills Ms. Algich. As shown with you're -er- a-analogy you are quite skilled in discerning both motive and potential action, even from brief conversation and secondhand accounts."

Inner Thoughts: You still need to maintain authority in this engagement. Correct her theory, assert yourself.

"Though while it has been r-rather accurate, I'd say that there is one issue with your construction of the d-dart tournament. Mr. Corax isn't the sort of person to throw a chair in place of darts. No, I would s-say an individual like Mr. Corax would have an assortment of darts on his person, each with its own weight and size, and that he would pick the one that best suited his current needs. Be that a bullseye or breaking the target in half."

Inner Thoughts: While Corax appears to be inhumanly brutish, he isn't a blunt instrument. He is forceful, but that power can channeled through the swing of a sledgehammer or the point of a chisel. Ensure there are no hard feelings, be conciliatory.

"But again I m-must say that the rest of your display is-"

Inner Thoughts: Beautifully.

"-beautifully presented, quite solid, and I certainly w-welcome any more insights you wish to bring."

Inner Thoughts: Hold off on any comment regarding Dervan for now. See what Peregrine offers in response. Also make note of Corax's family life, they could hint at some requirement of self-reliance, or perhaps something else.
No. 1006125 ID: e51896

I will say that his agency, Maverick Law Agency is a sponsorship of a group I'm a part of, which significantly helped our group's growth back home, and we're grateful for that.

But, haaaaah, that shouldn't be the only thing I should respect him for lest I be biased... My interpretation of him is he is someone who follows an end justifying the means ideology, as long as he gets the results we need to solve the case.

And, well, from what I hear, this case is going to be a pretty intense case in a world full of cruelty in which we've never experienced before, and is going to test our endurance mentally and physically. Dervan's harsh treatments is most likely a stepping stone to that and what is going to be needed for solving the case.

I feel if we can't handle his harsh ways of doing things, we ourselves won't be prepared for what is to come. his harsh treatment of Corax for example did help immensely in intimidating the prisoner we were interrogating after all, and him wanting to kill her was just something he was required to do from orders from the higher ups at the time... Just business and him following orders. forgive me if that sounded uncaring. I guess in a way, he's like a drill Sargent: harsh but fair in getting us to toughen us up with his intense treatment of us... a drill sargent taken up to 11, but required for the case we are about to go into.

It is part of my belief that everyone is destined to be here for a reason, Dervan included. I would request that we do not get him written up or reprimanded at this time and just try to see the good in him. In fact, I can't help but feel our adversaries is expecting us to try to get him written up or kicked off the team for some reason... just a hunch. Probably best to let the issue be and let Dervan do his thing.

Honestly, we shouldn't worry about how Dervan will treat us, but rather, our concerns should focus more on how the case itself will treat and possibly change us.

I'll end by saying that we are in a different investigation organization, this one does not follow the same rules of morality we are accustomed to back at home.
No. 1006126 ID: 3e7c34

Hmm. You use an interesting term, one I have heard many a time. “Just following orders.” A classic excuse to be sure, but one that does not hold up under scrutiny. And think about this if you will, say he was under orders. This means it was his position to treat us as such and impede the investigation. It makes me wonder, had Zirzam not arrived, would his orders have changed?

Alternatively it may have been Zirzam himself who issued those orders, then called it off. However, I suspect it was some one directly below him. It’s only a theory after all. And having worked directly with drill sergeants, stabbing and otherwise attempting lethally harm your subordinates is a good way to get court marshaled. Hitting and harsh language is acceptable, but never extremely lethal force outside of sanctioned live-fire training.

I do think he had two motives in fact. One was to test us, and by extension, see how we will act during the course of our duty. The second was in fact to do as I have suggested, get rid of us, discourage us from continuing. Which then implies that our culprit is in fact, someone within our organization.
No. 1006207 ID: 47be15
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No. 1006208 ID: 47be15
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This was my abrupt response because I will have to leave my town for a couple of weeks and this is what I came up with within a short period of time. Just to let you have something to do while I won't be able to post. I am not sure if while I am outside of my town if I will be able to use my photoshop but I will see. This is the best I can do for the little time that I have before I go on my trip.

No. 1006210 ID: 5f4030

inner thoughts: How intriguing…

*presses button* Of course sir, I am ready to begin whenever you are
No. 1006217 ID: 7687fc

(Presses button)
No. 1006220 ID: d63ea8

"O-of course. I will do my -uh- best to advise the a-agents."

Inner Thoughts: This is bad. Dervan is looking for leverage on the case so he can't be removed from it. Worse yet by being the one to 'bring in' these -voices??- he may be able to elevate himself into a higher and more entrenched position in the investigation. He's also created a situation were you're isolated from the others, without them as a base of support it will be much harder to put up any resistance.

*Threshold crosses his arms in order to keep his hands from shaking.*

Inner Thoughts: You need to calm down. Triumphant has already shown that he's keeping tabs on the situation, if Dervan gets violent with you he and the other agents will know. But your best defense is to play along and not make yourself a target like Corax. Throw yourself into the exercise, make yourself indispensable. Breathe first.

"M-mr." *sigh* "Mr. Glasshrauder, may I borrow that file? Any information in regards to their psychological profiles or personalities would help in creating a more effective line of questioning."

Inner Thoughts: Back down if he gives any resistance. Use the communicator, hide the fact that you were contacted.

*Threshold activates the communicator and says:*

"Testing, one two three. Mr. Corax, Mr. Peregrine, can you hear me alright?"
No. 1006228 ID: 669448

Loud and clear sir. Ready to begin.

*presses the button*

Hello? Pardon the interruption madam, is this the being known as “Fortune Ana” I have the pleasure of speaking to?
No. 1006259 ID: 47be15
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No. 1006274 ID: 3e7c34

Inner thoughts: If there is one thing I cannot stand it’s department politics at play and it interfering with my job. Triumphant, I may have overly judged you. If someone is guilty of a crime they should be punished. But, this notion? Gods? Absolution? I have no idea what any of that means. Finding that out was not my job description. I’m here to bring a criminal to justice and Dervan once again poking his head in where it doesn’t belong, this feels like he wants us chasing a red herring. Well, we’ll just see where this takes us.

Greetings to you, Fortune Ana. My name is “Corax” and you may refer to me as such for the sake of this call. I represent an organization known as the “Dimensional Tribunal.” I believe you and some of my associates here have already been aquatinted. And some of my investigative colleagues are looking into a case concerning one “Happy the Tragedy Phantom,” and believe you may aid us in our efforts. Understand this is not an interrogation, think of this more as a interview.
No. 1006275 ID: d63ea8

Inner Thoughts: So the file likely contains blackmail or convincing fabrications, though Dervan did drop that note about lying so it could easily be an empty folder. In either case the supposed contents therein will likely be more about the others than yourself. Still, be cautious and apologetic. Maintain your composure, he's still being diplomatic with you, which is a good sign.

"My apologies sir, I did not mean to pry into your personal logs."

*Threshold looks to the rooms where the two agents sit.*

Inner Thoughts: Dervan has spent a lot of time planning this scenario, and has already preempted Triumphant's interference, you worry that Corax may not be subtle enough to direct the questioning. You will have to side with Dervan in any altercation and possibly be the one to strike out against any perceived resistance. But you will have to be careful not to incriminate yourself, that'll just give Dervan the leverage he needs.

"We'll get to the bottom of this Mr. Glasshrauder."
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