bagropa: (for onus related reasons only)
[personal profile] bagropa
Croach is wrenched from his dream by an explosion. It is followed by a hissing noise not unlike the sound of a laser pistol cutting through and cauterizing flesh. He is alert immediately, abandoning his nest to seek out the danger in the park. Danger that... he does not sense. Instead, he hears the sound of human laughter, and he remembers the significance of the current date. It is some sort of human holiday, celebrated (increasingly, of late) by the baffling tradition of colorful explosions, perhaps as some sort of attempt to recreate a successful battle in their history. Regardless, it is unsafe, and Croach tracks the source of the explosions and warns the younglings away from using explosive devices. (It does not require much to convince them; they are eager to leave once he arrives, surely guilty upon being caught.)

He has been on this planet for fifty-seven days, he tabulates, as he dismantles the explosive to harvest the primitive chemicals within for use in new techno arrows. He has run out, unable to repair the damage done to the few he arrived with during the course of his travels and rescues. He has explored the length and breadth of the island and come no closer to discovering the purpose of his presence. He has learned that the denizens of the city are not always receptive to his assistance - in half of the assaults in which he has intervened, the victim has attacked him, often due to his appearance or 'nerve' or something called the 'patriarchy'.

It is... frustrating, he decides, emptying the black powder into a pouch and cinching it shut. He cannot identify the emotions this lack of progress causes him to experience and he is uncomfortable confiding in any of the - friends - he has made so far. He knows they are negative emotions - he recognizes the unpleasant feeling in his lower intestines - but they are either too foreign or too complicated to name in detail. Not that he has thought hard about that, really. He has actually put significant effort into not identifying the emotions. They make him agitated, and though he would deny it if anyone asked, he knows it has been showing. The way he treated the younglings he chased away was not kind, he will admit. They left abruptly because they were frightened, not apologetic. But he does not wish to acknowledge his emotions, because he fears - yes, he fears - that if he does, he might realize that there is no reason for his presence and, as several have insisted, no way to return to his home.

Croach returns to his nest with his find, hiding it safely in the cover of the roots of a tree. He has not ventured far from the area for the past Earth week, deciding instead to provide himself with a more comfortable and perma-- a more suitable place to live. In his explorations, he found a abandoned cave full of animal skins. He praised Nah Nohtek for the gift and took them to the copse he calls his own, intending to build a tent. He finds himself inexplicably reluctant to do so, though - to do anything, short of helping those within proximity who require urgent assistance. He has not visited Sunshine four Earth days. He wonders if she has noticed his absence.

That is not an entirely unfamiliar emotion, he realizes. He wondered that often about Sparks Nevada after he declared his onus complete and left, leaving Sparks Nevada with the author Rebecca Rose Rushmore. The Red Plains Rider had, concurrently, wedded Cactoid Jim. Croach had felt… superfluous. He had lied openly to Sparks Nevada in order to disguise his reaction, declaring that he would return to his tribe indefinitely. He did not feel successful when Sparks Nevada believed him. He had experienced - sadness.

Putting names to his emotions - frustration, sadness, loneliness - does not make them easier to bear. But something had, he recalls, and his feet carry him south out of the park with purpose that he has thus far lacked.

“I wish to begin a tabulation,” he declares with more confidence than he has felt since he arrived in the city, sitting heavily on a stool at the bar in Wilmot’s End. He has heard it is open to - that they would not be averse to his appearance. “One of your wheat-based beverages. You may entrust me with the bottle.”


((WHO WANTS TO GET SUPER DRUNK WITH CROACH because he is going to get pretty drunk. He will eventually be leaving with someone - not like that, gosh - but in the meantime he will be... an inappropriate drunk.))
mr_fring: (regrets)
[personal profile] mr_fring
[[ooc: Heyyyy remember Gus. I haven't been neglecting him on PURPOSE, it's sort of a thing that happened. Here's what he's been up to.]]


Gus barely even realizes that more than a month has gone by. Strange to think of it. He's settled into his new life reasonably well - after all it's the sort of thing he's had to do a few times before - but he still feels somewhat trapped. Not just because he is actually trapped - it's been made clear to him that he can't leave the island, for whatever reason - but because his life now is so much more insular than it had been. He's all but avoided meeting people, perhaps finding his predicament too tenuous to bother with it. But it really has been over a month now, and he's grown into a routine. Working, meeting with Cecil to discuss broadcasts, occasional dinners. He rarely takes time for himself.

Today, though, restlessness drives him out. He doesn't seek company; he doesn't want to crowd Cecil. Things must be taken slowly. Cecil's still showing a strong attachment to his old life, and the arrival of Dana has not helped matters any. If Gus wants to get any closer to him - which he does, and not entirely for noble reasons - he's going to have to move with slow, perfect precision.

So instead he strolls about the city. It's easy enough to lose himself for periods of time, though it's not a great comfort. Everything is still relatively foreign, and he's never been particularly attracted to the Manhattan lifestyle. Before too long, wandering makes him feel as restless as when he'd been sitting in his apartment. He has to do something.

This is how, after coming up with no good alternatives, he finds himself seated on a bench in a reasonably well-trafficked part of the Central Park, balancing a large, freshly purchased sketchbook on his knee. He used to have a mildly artistic flair, and though he feels a bit foolish doing this in public, it feels good to practice that again with no pressure. There's also something oddly safe in it. Here, no one knows him; and it does have a certain benefit. It makes him seem trustworthy, for whatever reason. It's only after the first few tourists ask him if he's taking commissions that he realizes there's no reason to say no. People will sit with him while he works, and will make conversation. Talking openly, thinking he's just some random stranger. Nothing wrong with that. He goes so far as to invite questions, drawing up a little sign soliciting requests. Let's see where this gets him.


[[ooc: Gus will DRAW YOU SOMETHING and he'll also casually ask you questions about your secrets if he thinks you're interesting. Have at it.]]
rae_of_sun: (backing away now)
[personal profile] rae_of_sun
Sunshine can't say that she's a fan of Manhattan in the wee hours of the morning. Getting up early for work isn't so bad. She's used to it - hell, she still wakes up naturally at four AM more often than not - so it's more of a return to routine than a hardship.

And really, Manhattan isn't inherently more dangerous than Old Town. There seems to be a pretty even trade-off between one being louder and busier but boasting a more homogeneously human population, and the other being smaller and quieter but with a significantly higher chance that the shadowy figure in the alley is not human (and also thirsty for your blood).

Of course, humans can be trouble, too. It's easy to forget that when you're used to worrying about vampires and ghouls and whatnot. So when she approaches the still-shuttered bakery and sees two people lurking around outside, her first thought is that someone's really impatient for some muffins. Then she realizes that they seem more focused on the Radio Shack next door - and that one of them is holding… what is that, a crowbar? A pipe?

Oh. Oh, carthaginian hell. Is she interrupting a robbery?

She pulls up short a good fifteen feet away, but her shoes scuff against the sidewalk and draw their attention. Double carthaginian hell. She stumbles back a few paces, her hand automatically going for her knife pocket - a stupid move, because her tiny knife isn't going to deter a pair of criminals and she can't fight humans, her magic's no good for that.

"Hey!" says the one without the crowbar, starting toward her. Something in his hand flashes. She's not the only one with a knife, and his is out and ready to do damage. Oh, gods.
bagropa: (Default)
[personal profile] bagropa
Croach has never wished his senses to be inaccurate, but the longer he goes without sensing a familiar human, the more inclined he is to desire it. He searches, sleeping when necessary in the small groves the humans call parks. For safety, he travels mostly at night - his senses are as hale in the darkness, and he finds it is quieter. He interacts with the occasional being, usually inebriated, often complimenting his 'costume' and wishing to take a 'selfie' with him (for which he places them under onus, even though (or because) it is unlikely he will ever encounter them again).

After several medium units of time observing the humans from a safe distance, though, Croach finds himself... lonely. These brief relationships are of a less satisfying depth. One evening, when the lack of companionship has become too conspicuous to ignore, Croach sets out into the city earlier than usual, before the sun has set. He assists a woman looking for transportation, rescues an Earthen feline from a tree, and helps an elderly woman navigate across a busy road. If he truly is here for a reason, he is confident he will fulfill it among these 'good deeds' eventually.


((So Croach is gonna be wandering around the city actively looking to help anyone who needs it. Dropped your keys down the drain? SURELY THIS WILL AVERT SOME FUTURE CATASTROPHE. CROACH WILL ASSIST YOU IN RETRIEVING THEM. Et cetera. Big problems, small problems, Croach is here to help.))
bagropa: (praise nah nohtek)
[personal profile] bagropa
Croach awakens suddenly in darkness. He cannot recall the pattern or shape of his dream, merely its uniqueness. Were he among his tribe, he might consult Blelk the Interpreter of Dreams. He will endure the curiosity. More pressing is his current surroundings - the ground beneath him is unfamiliar, smooth and cold, and upon further review of his senses, the waves in the air and the quality of the darkness are foreign to him. He has no recollection of retreating to a tunnel or cave, nor of being apprehended by a robot rogue.

"Sparks Nevada?" His voices echoes shallowly. He anticipates a response, but there is no one present to misconstrue his behavior for concern. He can detect no past or present sign of Sparks Nevada or Pemily Stalwark. It is concerning. He stands slowly and allows his eyes a short unit of time to adjust to the lack of light. Small cracks of faint light line the walls - windows, he surmises, and the greater of them a door. A domicile, constructed of stone by the feel of the walls.

The door responds to none of his commands and though he runs his hands methodically across its face, he finds no manual latch. He bears his weight against it from several angles to no effect. The jostling of his holster against his back reminds him of its presence and he removes an arrow. He is reluctant to expend any of his implements, unsure of what he will face when he escapes, but he will shortly possess a multitude of suitable bludgeons should he require additional weaponry.

Set on a timer, the arrowhead wedged under the crack of the door detonates while Croach is shielded in a collinear corner. The stone door cracks and, with a good prod from Croach, falls back into pieces on the floor with impressive weight. Croach emerges cautiously into a copse of deciduous trees, curiously interspersed with stone markers. He can sense humans several small distances away in varying directions - none near enough to be a threat, and no metal enemies that he can detect - but every one of his twenty-eight senses tell him that he is no longer on G'loot Praktaw. Which... Sparks Nevada would undoubtedly designate Mars, were he present to do so.

In no particular direction, Croach makes his way through the trees. The ambient noise is discordant and unwavering. The ground is softer, a shade more green than the red plains he is familiar with. The sky, too, strangely featureless through the leaves save for the half-light of a large moon, is more blue than the violet he is fond of. Overall less red, definitely less red than G'loot Praktaw. The stone markers he passes, irregular in form and placement, are labeled with words - Earthen names, though for what purpose he cannot guess. As the trees thing and bring him to a path, he sees a large number of lights.

He has no singular moment of understanding, and yet he knows he is on Earth, and that Sparks Nevada is not. And there is something familiar, he realizes, a waveform he both recognizes and cannot comprehend, originating almost indetectably from one direction. He knows without understanding that as his proximity to the source of that waveform increases, so will the probability for receiving answers to his many questions. Checking that his quantum bow and techno arrows are safe in their holster across his back, Croach commences down the path to track the unknown.


((So Croach is starting out in Trinity Cemetery, just on the edge of the rift. He'll be making his way, though he doesn't know it yet, toward the Ramble in Central Park. It's a roughly 3.5 mile journey that could conceivably bring Croach anywhere between the cemetery and Central Park, so if you'd like to have your character cross paths with him, feel free to comment with a location and I will have Croach happen to track his way there! Also this is ever so slightly backdated because I started writing it last night shhh.))

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