27 December 2013 @ 05:36 pm
[From here.]

After having it built up so much, the Records Archive turned out to be a rather unassuming room.

It looked much like a number of the other rooms scattered throughout the institute. There were computer consoles all along the walls, interspersed with bookshelves that held countless different volumes -- journals, notebooks, and files, all looking to have been organized and cataloged in a very methodical way. There was a table in the center of the room surrounded by chairs; atop it were a few open journals, along with one large binder. Was this what Landel was referring to whenever he mentioned paperwork?

Castiel used his flashlight to take in the whole room, noting that there was yet another teleportation pad in the corner, but it was abandoned save for them. Maybe Landel hadn't expected them to get this far...

Other than the computers, though, this was the sort of thing that Castiel was comfortable with. This was research.

He turned back toward the others. "It looks like we have plenty of work to do."
24 December 2013 @ 12:39 am
[from here]

By some miracle, the very door they had been seeking was immediately to their left. Kratos found himself double-checking the wording on the sign posted next to the door to confirm that yes, this really was the Records Archive. After so many nights spent wandering through rooms and physically straining himself in ways that were incredibly healthy, it was just a little anti-climatic to turn the corner and find exactly what they were looking for.

"Finally," he breathed. He tested the lock out of formality; as he'd expected, it held fast. Above the door handle, though, was a little black slot - a card reader exactly like the one that had graced the door to the third floor and many others in Welgaia. Castiel seemed to be in charge of the keycards, so Kratos stepped aside to allow the angel to unlock the door.
22 December 2013 @ 06:24 pm
[From here.]

As Lloyd peered down the hall, first one way, then the other, he quickly came to the same conclusion the others must have drawn. Turning right would lead them to a dead end. Left was the only option.

There were no doors in sight, just another stretch of hall, walls featureless and oppressive. The silence hung heavy and thick between them. It made Lloyd's skin itch, tempting him to say something, raise his voice and yell just for the sake of breaking the atmosphere that this whole building tried to create. He tamped the urge down. The halls looked empty, but that didn't mean they were safe.

On the right he could see a set of stairs that led down. No, definitely not that way. The second floor wasn't where they wanted to go. In a way, though, it helped him orient himself. Stairs. The only stairs he'd seen on the floors below were...

He kept his voice low. "Do you think that's the Sun Room up ahead?" Had they just come around in a circle?
20 December 2013 @ 11:35 am
[From here.]

"I know, I know," Lloyd grumbled. Sheesh, couldn't he just be glad that they might not have to face those traps ever again? Although, it was weird how the door had changed like that, but he wasn't going to bother questioning it. If it worked and brought them closer to their goal, that was good enough for him.

The hall beyond was a lot like the other halls in the institute, dark and foreboding, an air of disrepair making everything seem a little more grim. The only thing that looked shiny and new was the lock on the door to the right of where they stood. In sharp contrast, a door on the left had a lock that looked rusted and weak. Lloyd thought they could probably break through if they wanted. The hall continued on until the dark swallowed everything beyond the edge of their light.

Left through the door, or right...? Lloyd frowned. Which way did they want to go? The door was right there, but what if the door they were looking for was just down the hall? "I think we should look around before we go through any more doors," he said. "We can always come back if there's nothing."
19 December 2013 @ 10:21 am
[From here.]

Castiel hadn't known for certain where they would end up. Logically, the last place they'd been had seemed like the right choice, but he refused to assume that. That was the best case scenario, after all.

But here they were, crammed into this tiny space once again, where he had originally found these cards that they had officially proved to be keys.

It was a far better outcome than he would have expected.

Castiel pocketed his key and turned to make sure the others were in one piece. There was only one door to go through, so it wasn't much of a question where they'd be headed next.
18 December 2013 @ 06:49 am
[From here.]

At this point they all knew the steps to get up to the third floor's entrance, and so Castiel didn't hesitate to step onto the escalator, expecting the others to keep up as it started moving.

As they made the short trip to the top, Castiel shifted around to look back at Kratos in particular. This area had been safe of any kind of monsters every time they'd been here, so he was willing to let his guard down at least enough to ask a question.

"How are you feeling?" He needed to assess what kind of state Kratos was in, so that he would be able to factor in how much or how little help he could expect him to be if they were attacked. Clearly Kratos could walk fine on his own, but being deprived of oxygen for so long still may have had some lingering effects.
17 December 2013 @ 09:16 pm
[From here.]

The library was dark and quiet - eerily so, in fact - and the row upon row of shelves would make it all to easy for something to hide in the shadows. Tense, Lloyd gripped his sword and tried to piece the dark with his eyes while Kratos went for the book that would open the secret passage.

He almost jumped when his light abruptly failed, then cursed under his breath. "Hang on." Fumbling for the lantern's crank, he tried to ignore his hammering heart. Damn, he was going to have to get used to this if he was going to use this lantern all that much. At least he had the light from the others' flashlights to see what he was doing.

By the time his lantern sprang back to life, Kratos had the passageway open.
17 December 2013 @ 08:27 am
[From here.]

The expansive room was as dark and as quiet as last night, but that didn't do anything to set Castiel at ease. He took a moment to tilt his head upward, trying to see if he could make out even the slightest sign of the third floor through the skylight. But somehow, even through sun streamed through that window every day, there was no way to make out anything above the second floor.

Some kind of illusion, maybe? It was bizarre, either way.

Castiel refocused his attention, shifting to step toward the library doors. They couldn't waste too much time here and risk getting attacked.
18 November 2013 @ 12:46 am
[From here.]

Caught in mid-step when the warp pad flared to life, Lloyd stumbled once it had finished transporting him, his outstretched hand closing around empty air. Panic spiked even higher, worse than the realization that they'd been trapped. He whirled back around - there was Castiel.

Where was Kratos?!

"Dad!" Barely even registering the clean, organized janitor's room (such a sharp contrast to the last janitor's closet he'd been in) or the neatly stacked shelves and cleaning supplies, Lloyd lunged straight back to the pad. He might have still been lightheaded. He didn't care. Kratos wasn't here, which meant-

Strong arms caught him, jerking him to a stop before he could step foot back on the pad. "Lloyd, think!" Castiel snapped. "We can't go back to that room, or we're dead."

If that was supposed to convince Lloyd to give up, it failed miserably. The teen struggled against the older man's grip. "But Kratos is still back there! We can't just leave him!"

"Neither would he want us to return and die for his sake." Castiel's response came swift and sharp. "He'll be fine. He can take care of himself."
15 November 2013 @ 01:54 am
[From here.]

So they'd get through fast.

"I don't want to get stuck in here," he said, as they passed the threshold. He didn't break into a run, but he did cross the chamber in a few strides.

Nothing set up this way could possibly be good news. Even if they were already test subjects in a larger sense, there was a kind of testing that could be much worse than what they had already endured, more personal, more torturous, more final. It could happen; he wasn't sure that there was any way to say it wouldn't. There was a certain slope to the morality in this place, a direction in which it slid, and the limits weren't clear. He suspected they were flexible--maybe more flexible than they'd seen so far.

The condition of the animals' remains was present in his mind.

[Technically behind Lloyd & Co!]
[From here.]

Unfortunately for Lloyd, the moment he stepped through the door was the moment the light in his new lamp gave out. It didn't leave him completely in the dark; Castiel and Kratos were behind him, both with their flashlights out. In the abrupt dimness, though, it made it hard to see the contents of the room he'd stepped into. "Dammit," the teen cursed under his breath, fumbling with the lantern for a moment to see if he could get it to turn back on. To his relief, once he wound the crank for another minute, the lamp flickered back to life.

They weren't in a hall. It was a large, vacant room, almost empty except for a few metal carts and stacked plastic crates. What dominated Lloyd's attention, though, were two large metal... boxes? Houses? They were large enough to have doors, but surely they couldn't be someone's home. They weren't that big. The wall of each chamber had a window that didn't quite feel like glass when he touched it to look into the nearest one. Plexiglass, and bulletproof, though he didn't know either fact. On the other side of the glass...

Excitement sparked.

"Kratos, Castiel, over here!"

Through the window, he could see the distinct platform of another warp pad.
08 November 2013 @ 06:16 pm
[From here.]

The room they reached next was a drastic change in scenery compared to some of the more mundane places that they'd passed through before. The room with the metal detector was interesting enough, though it was only meant as a means by which to access something more important.

They'd made it to some kind of lab, and while Castiel only vaguely recognized most of the equipment here (and he imagined that was the case for Kratos and Lloyd, too), he could tell that it was meant for analyzing biological samples.

That was something he could usually do on his own without any use of microscopes or centrifuges or anything else, which explained his lack of knowledge.

"... We may want to search this area before we continue on, in case there's something useful here," he said as he stepped up to one of the refrigerators. He doubted there would be any food inside...
01 November 2013 @ 11:13 pm
[From here.]

Maybe during the day the room Lloyd stepped into would have felt homey, maybe even luxurious as far as apartment rooms went. There was a nice, wide bed, a desk with a chair, a boxy item sitting on top that Lloyd vaguely recognized as a computer, though its screen was completely dark. There was a small kitchen alcove and a bathroom adjoining the room, the sinks in both dark with grime. Lloyd grimaced at the thought of trying to get drinkable water from either faucet. He didn't even want to think about the tub, too far recessed into the alcove for him to see. Something about the whole place felt eerie, disturbing. Fortunately, that wasn't what he was here for.

"There's the next warp pad," he said, striding across the room with purpose. His nerves only twitched a few times now from the memory of electrocution. Shining his flashlight as he walked, just in case there were monsters lurking, he almost didn't notice the small case sitting on top of a nightstand in the corner of the room. He blinked, the red cross on the box seeming familiar somehow. Where had he seen something like that? "Hey..." His footsteps slowed, the memory nagging. "What's that over there?"
[From here.]

Instead of the door leading into another room with another teleportation pad, they were instead let out into a hallway that was lined with doors. Well, that was just great.

Sora let out a sigh and glanced back at Tsurugi and Link. "Guess we should try all of them, huh?" He stepped up to the first one on his left and attempted to turn the knob, but the lock was sticking. There was enough give that he was pretty sure he could break it, but were all of them going to be like this?

"Looks like you might need to use some of your soccer skills here, Tsurugi," Sora said with a small smile as he lifted a leg up and kicked at the door. At least his shoes were hardy enough that he wouldn't hurt himself doing that, but he might end up throwing himself against the door before long.
[From here.]

At least the pattern that the pads took didn't change night by night. It would probably be impossible for them to make any progress if that was the case.

But here they were in the locker room, as he'd expected.

"Through that door, and we'll be at the spot we ended last night," he said, mainly for Lloyd's benefit. They really hadn't made it that far, but with the rebels acting as the perfect distraction, maybe that would be different this time around. Plus there would be three of them to check the doors, rather than two.

He stepped away from the pad, only giving the room a brief glance as he waited for the others.
24 October 2013 @ 12:32 am
[From here]

The sensation of being pulled from one point in space to another was one Link had grown well used to. Not for the first time, it dawned on him how useful having Oocoo here would have been.

He stepped off the pad, shining his light about the area to ensure its security.

There was strange machinery in here... Link frowned, taking note of the portal in the opposite corner of the room. He inspected the large machines, searching for switches or dials... Some indication of what to do next. He moved to wander between the prongs of the metal detector.

Doorways didn't exist for no reason.
19 October 2013 @ 05:56 pm
[from here]

The lights flickered on as Kratos entered; he quietly sheathed his sword and then walked onto the escalator after checking to make sure that Castiel and Lloyd had made it in after him.

"I realize our keys may not match," he said, mostly for Lloyd's benefit, as the escalator began its slow climb upward. "We have the radios, though, so if there are any issues, call." Both Castiel and Lloyd had easily remembered numbers; hopefully, they both recalled his.
18 October 2013 @ 07:27 am
[From here.]

The library was quiet and dark when Lloyd entered, barring the light from their flashlights. Lloyd let the light from his flashlight play across the books, the floor, even the ceiling for good measure. He hadn't forgotten the monster that had seemed to slither out of the darkness just a couple of nights ago.

"You guys see anything?" He kept his voice soft, barely above a whisper. If there was something in here, he didn't want to attract its attention. Not that they'd be able to avoid it once they opened that secret door, but hopefully they'd be able to get out before anything blocked their path.
16 October 2013 @ 07:32 pm
[From here.]

Even as Castiel took a few bold steps into the Sun Room, he didn't sense anything out of the ordinary. He hesitated for only a second or two, waiting for someone to inevitably show themselves, but when that didn't happen he nodded to himself and veered to the right, moving at a quick pace.

While he wasn't resorting to outright running, he was making a beeline for the library door. If Kratos and Lloyd knew what was good for them, they'd be fast on his heels.
16 October 2013 @ 03:57 pm
It was the usual from Landel, and by now, Kratos had trained himself to tune out whatever the doctor was saying. Instead, he focused on getting dressed for the night. He would have to forego his Cruxis uniform since last night had proven that removing and then replacing the intricate mess of belts that made up the uniform's outer harness was too much of a hassle for him to do it night after night. His other set of clothes from home wasn't acceptable either: although less belts were involved, there was still a significant amount of metal involved. Thankfully, he had other options, like the uniform left over from the military occupation, for one. There was still a belt to deal with, but it was just the one; the rest could be kept on.

The difficulty was always in the gloves, since one of his hands had an extraneous fixture, but eventually, Kratos was able to get them situated. As he flexed his hand to check mobility, he thought about his Crystal. For the past two nights, it had acted up without warning...it certainly made him wonder if perhaps he would be dealing with something similar again tonight. Unfortunately, it wasn't something he could control.

With a sigh, he put the thought out of his head and refocused on the task at hand. It was time to go meet Castiel and Lloyd. They had work to do.

[to here]