Outworld/The Amethyst Tower

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Violets Are Blue

Author: Dynamics, after Event I

“What do you mean they’re blue?!”

Dynamics, currently holding a bunch of perfectly blue and white flowers, had never found colour-blindness to be a problem in the daily life of a Liberator. He could distinguish between black and red, and red and gold, and the shade of red that he was meant to be wearing and the shade of red that was meant to be coming out of other people, and so it hadn’t really bothered him.

Of course it was now that it came to bite him in the arse.

The porcelain-faced security doll made a movement which could be best described as a shrug, before a voice sounded from the front desk, “Shall I tell Ms Violet that you are here, Mr, er, ‘of-the-Victory-Through-”

“Just Dynamics,” he said, exasperated, running his hand through his hair, “and no, please don’t tell her I’m here, please for the love of everything don’t tell her I’m here.”

“If that’s what you want, sir,” the receptionist smiled, “If I could offer some advice in your predicament, sir, it seems that you might be in want of some purple roses, and, well, we do appear to be in ample supply.”

She gestured to the thorny flowers growing up the side of the tower and Dynamics laughed a slightly hollow laugh, “That’s a really, really bad idea,” he remarked, before muttering “and somewhere a certain ex-crewmate is likely finding this hilarious…”

“What was that, sir?”

“Never mind, are you sure that Violet won’t notice if I pick some of her own flowers and give them to her?” he asked.

“Who can say, sir. I’m sure she’d appreciate the sentiment either way.”

“If you say so…”

Hours later, heading up the tower, Dynamics examined the damage that the thorns in the flowers had done to his gloves. There was a certain irony in that, he felt, and noted to tell Gatling about this if she ever came back. At least Violet might find the whole thing cute.

That was a good thing, though, right?

The ambient music stopped to quickly whisper “What do you want?” at him, and he let out a laugh. He was beginning to like this place.

A Brief Visit

Author: By My Crooked Teeth, after Event I

By My Crooked Teeth enjoyed a walk, while waiting for the next Nexus to make itself known he decided that it was worth seeing this new world, the foundations anyway. He took to wandering about Outworld to see the sights up close and personal.

Some places he decided to leave alone unless invited, others he only wanted to see the beauty of this new world in the making. It was this exploration that lead him to Amethyst Tower, and so far, he thought it a beauty. Purple was never his colour even before he took up the grey of the Order but he could agree that it was pretty.

He stopped and sniffed the purple roses with the impossibly sharp thorns. He enjoyed the appearance of his former student’s handy work but did not feel like earning some new scars, not today anyway. He made his way into the lobby where he was greeted by a security doll with a face of finely carved porcelain. They moved swiftly and quietly the picture of professionalism with the promise of potential violence.

The building was sterile and stark. The labyrinth spanned out throughout the skyscraper full of offices for various business dealings. He was sure watching Ms Violet work would be a most entertaining prospect. But first he would have to work out exactly what it was she did.

Crooked was pulled from his musings when the doll at the desk repeated Their question. “Can I help you sir?”

“Yes, I am wondering if Ms Violet is around?”

“I am afraid sir that she is not here presently. She is visiting a gentleman.”

“A Mr Dynamics perhaps.” Crooked asked with a smirk.

“I could not comment sir.”

Crooked’s smile got wider, “But of course. Might I be permitted to leave a message for Ms Violet?”

“Certainly.” The Doll pushed a pad of paper and a pen towards Crooked. He paused and wrote a note which said,

Ms Violet,

A shame that I missed when you were away from home but I trust you are enjoying yourself whole heartedly. If the mood should strike you, you are most welcome to the Gallery of Truth and Lies. Whether to simply see my Territory or to garner the usage of my Hailer if you have found a need. My doors are open for those who wish to walk through them. Give my regards to Dynamics.

By My Crooked Teeth.

He then folded the page and passed it back. “Thank you, Sir.”

Crooked nodded and walked towards the exit. He heard a voice say ‘What do you want?’ Crooked chuckled to himself.

“If knew that I would be a wiser man.” He said to nothing but the air.

And with that he exited the Amethyst Tower and on down the way.

In Which Axle Is Very Confused

Author: Axle, after Event II

“Axle, if you’re reading this you’ve missed me! I’m off in Amethyst Tower, Come find me there?”

Axle glared at the scrawled message on the door, ripped it off, and headed to find an airship she could pilot to Violet’s territory. This was not how she had been planning to spend her day.

The small battered airship almost crashed into the ground outside the tower- Axle hadn’t piloted anything in a long time, but she hadn’t been about to admit that to anyone when she had commandeered it. She staggered out, and looked up apprehensively at the tower.

Walking in, the first thing she saw was a large, dazzling lingerie store, plastered in pictures of Flare. She stared at the glamorous shop dummies, draped in tiny pieces of fabric that appeared to be totally useless, with some confusion.

Well at least that answers the question of what Liberators wear to bed…

She looked around, making sure no-one was watching her, and slipped inside, red-faced but intrigued.

“Well hello there sweetie, what can we do for you today?” An intimidatingly handsome man was leaning on a counter, a name-badge on his purple waistcoat identifying him as staff, an amused expression crossing his face as he watched the uncomfortable looking volunteer go even more red.

“I… um… nothing? I’m just…. Ok no, I have to ask. What’s the point? Underwear is…. Practical. It’s to stop chaffing… right? This just looks…” she awkwardly gestured at something that largely looked to be made of ribbons and string, “... uncomfortable?”

“Oh my dear thing!” The man almost lept from the counter, and went over to the piece Axle had looked at. “Some of our pieces are very comfortable… but underwear isn’t just about being practical my dear… Imagine, if you would, that you are on a date with a beautiful… Liberator? Is that the right word?” Axle snorted, and the man grinned broadly, “I can see it is. So you take this lovely liberator home, and you slip out to get drinks, and you come back and she’s wearing this, would that not be very pleasant for you?”

Axle pressed her lips together, her face one giant frown. “I don’t really umm… do dates? But like… surely it would be just as good to walk in and she’s um… naked?”

“Ahhhh, a common error, but no, this way the intrigue is there, the excitement of removing the garment, the dazzle, the glamour…”

“You… put something on… just to take it off?”

“Why yes! Now, what about for yourself? Do you have a… particular person you’d like to impress?” A tape measure had mysteriously arrived, floating in the air next to Axle, moving around and measuring various dimensions.

“Umm, no... I was just umm… interested? And I um, don’t believe in Capitalism so I couldn’t buy anything anyway” Axle shuffled her feet, as the tape measure tried to wrap around a leg, wondering if it would be rude to literally run out of the door.

“Oh, but you’re obviously a shaper. One doesn’t have to spend money when one exudes such power. And one doesn’t need a special someone to look nice. Perhaps you could get something just for yourself?”

Axle’s brow furrowed. “I… don’t understand?”

“Do you not do… nice things for yourself sweetie?” The handsome man had come a little closer, his face the picture of concern. “Treat yourself to a nice meal, just because you deserve it? Have a long, luxurious bath after a hard day? Nothing?”

Axle looked down. “Umm… I don’t really… That’s not… It’s not what we do.”

“Oh how awful.” He grabbed the tape measure out of the air and gave it a glance. “Well we can’t be having that. Everyone deserves a treat once in awhile.” He turned to a screen on the counter, pressed a few buttons, and a vivid bag came sliding down a ramp to one side. “Here,” He handed the bag to Axle, who almost dropped it in horror. “Take this. It’ll look stunning on you. And maybe one day you’ll even have someone to impress with it.” He gave a gentle laugh.

“Umm… I really couldn’t... I don't…” Axle floundered, trying not to look in the bag, which to contain entirely black lace, but when she looked up, the man had disappeared behind a door, his laughter hanging in the air around her.

She stuffed the bag into her rucksack, hoping desperately that neither Dynamics nor Violet would find it, and rushed out of the shop, her face flushed.

Gloves and Hands

Author: Dynamics

Dynamics always seemed to arrive at Amethyst Tower while Violet was, as Receptionist Jade of the Reception Desk put it, “Unfortunately but unavoidably otherwise scheduled”. If Dynamics were a person with phenomenal cosmic power to bend the laws of time to the whims of his subconscious, one might begin to suspect this wasn’t necessarily coincidence.

Receptionist Jade of the Reception Desk (which struck Dynamics as a rather dull name for a ship) did make sure Dynamics was comfortable. Reliably, sweet violet tea that was initially requested in a misunderstanding by the Liberator but he found he had a taste for, was brought to him while he sat inspecting the assorted reading material available in the lobby of the purple tower, and Jade made sure that the Liberator wasn’t devoid of conversation.

After establishing that the answer to why he was here was never going to be met with anything but babbling and blushing, they had moved on to discuss anything ranging from the weather to Dynamics’s analysis of the multitude flaws of capitalism to Jade’s criticism of the later series of the Ziggy Love Show.

Today’s topic of conversation was a book Jade was reading and had persuaded the Liberator to thumb through. Jade liked it; Dynamics was unimpressed. Aside from being idealogically unsound at a start, this book about a romantically inclined Opportunist felt to him to be incredibly boring reading material.

“But half of every page is just description,” Dynamics protested, “and not particularly useful description. Who cares what colour the curtains of the room are? I just want them to actually do something.”

“It’s symbolism, Dynamics,” Jade explained, having long since dropped the ‘Mr’ from addressing him, “the curtains being red sets up the conflict and betrayal in the room.”

“But they then have an argument,” Dynamics pointed to the text on the page with a gloved finger, “that’s the conflict, there. They don’t need to waste half a page on it.”

“It’s not wasted, it draws you in. It’s like how the storm at the start sets the mood for Saff’s parents dying, or how Saff being hurt by the thorns on the rose is symbolic for how her lover betrays her later, or how he always wears gloves which means-”

Jade stopped, glancing at the gloves on the Liberator’s hands.

“Which means?” Dynamics continued, oblivious to the reason for the pause.

He didn’t find out, as the call of, “Dynamics, sweetie!” came from across the lobby as a pair of white gloves preceded Violet as she descended the staircase. Jade closed the book and went back to her desk as white glove met black, and the Receptionist of the Reception Desk thought to herself, “he’ll get it eventually, right?”