|Everyone Has a Mask|
"I've not spent much time in Neo-Edo myself, but I'm sure there is many a fascinating find there... of all kinds. Perhaps I can join you there sometime?" Ren 'blinks' eyes inward as Sae appears suddenly, then smiles as she recounts her story. Ren offers her a pat on the arm as she sits. "I hope that I will have a chance to meet this Edward," Ren says, then motions a pair of fin edges toward Dante. "Dante is one of the first people I came to know here," Ren relates, "and the one who encouraged me to work for TASK."
Dante nods a bit. "Sure, I can letcha know the next time I g-..." He trails off as he gets a glomp. Now, his back is FINELY attuned to the sensation of....certain female attributes and he grins a bit wider. He turns to address the new person and...his face falls just a bit, although he seems of good cheer. "Figures the first touchy-feely I get in a while and it's a youngin'." He laughs at that and shakes his head. He offers Sae a hand to shake. "Heya girlie. Name's Dante. Good to meet ya." True he's a bit lascivious but...he certainly has age boundaries! He offers what's almost a 'sad' look to Ren as she mentions TASK but he seems over it one frame later.
Sae is pretty oblivious to a lot of things! One of which is how her more 'feminine' curves tend to press up against people when she's all huggy and such, but since Dante seems not to mind she takes no notice of it. "Eeeee! Dante!? Nice to meet ya! I'm Sae!", waviing excitedly from her seat next to the pair. "I hope you'll meet him soon too Ren! He was asking me a buncha questions about Twisted and stuff and I don't think I answered them too well! Plus he seemed a lil sad about not being able to go home! I showed him the bunny-face I doodled on a chocolate pie I made, so I'm sure he's all better now!". That too is something she's pretty oblivious about! Not everyone is able to get all their troubles pushed aside by cute things like her or Flandre might. "And I'm not super young! I'm 16 thank you very much!", giggling enough to show she's just being silly.
Serenity regards Dante curiously as he flashes the discontented look. "I've not yet seen anyone matching that description at the Welcome Center," Ren mentions to Sae, "but I hope that we will be able to answer those questions for him." Ren smiles and motions to Sae. "Of course, providing some thoughtfully-chosen food doesn't hurt, but accurate knowledge of the extent of the bad news may be comforting."
Dante waves his hands in 'joking defense' at Sae. "I know, I know. You're a big girl. You're just too young for old uncle Dante here n.n" He shakes his head with another chuckle and peers over at Ren. "What the heck are ya talking about now? Is that nerd-speak for ' let's get food' ? I just polished off a pizza but...I guess I could go for a second one. Or did everyone want something different?" He doesn't seem to GET anyone not living off of pizza, but...
Sae says, "Pizza's good! I'm already a lil chubby though, so I totally can't eat that much of it! But but but! I still have some chocolate pie in the back from yesterday, if anyone wants some! It's a got an adorable bunny face on it!". Turning Ren, Sae nods bunches and adds "I hope you'll be able to help him out Ren! You're really smart about that kinda stuffs, so I'm sure he'll feel bunches better after talking with ya!". Then to Dante "So so so so! Ren said you introduced her to TASK kinda? Do you work there and stuff?"
"I was referring to the personalized pie," Ren clarifies for Dante before returning an encouraging expression to Sae. "I will do my best if I happen to be the one on duty." While Sae is inquiring about Dante, Ren settles into a seated height at the table as well, 'kneeling' above the forcefield generator next to the two.
Sae pauses a moment as Ren adjusts herself, and..drops to her knees and starts crawling over? Huh?! The girl's peeeeering intently at the forcefield generator, along with how Ren's 'kneeling' above it. "Hey Ren! Is it comfy..sitting like this? Maybe someone should make you a chair for here! Or a hammock! Or somethin' cozy!"
From the entrance of the Usual Restaurant, Rayne's voice can be heard, "I don't know about here, but it might be worth setting up an... aquarium for lack of a better word, for her in one of the offices in the Welcome Center." Yes, the rainbow haired girl has just entered, and she's already approaching where the three are currently, apparently having caught the tail end of what's been said. "Hey Ren, Sae..." She pauses as she looks at Dante, one eyebrow raised. "I could swear I've seen you somewhere, but I can't place it."
Serenity glances down as Sae drops to the floor, leaning over to peer at her with a puzzled expression. The black disk is unremarkably featureless on the outside, other than the small currently-empty storage box affixed to the top. "Hh? I was only trying to put myself closer to eye level with everyone," Ren explains. "The environment suit can be a bit confining at times, but there is no current to oppose, so I am generally equally 'comfy' whichever way I rest." Ren twists to look as Rayne speaks up. "Hello," Ren calls to her, rippling sideways to make room for her. "An aquarium for decoration sounds like a wonderful idea. Perhaps Silencia could help to ensure a balanced ecosystem inside."
Dante peers down at Sae, getting an odd look on his face. He sighs just a bit with a soft chuckle and shakes his head, muttering. Something about it ALWAYS being the young ones. As he hears Rayne's voice, he perks up just a tad. He glances over and offers a wave. "Probably on the cover of 'Twisteds hottest bachelors' I'd think n.- On a totally unrelated note, care to join us? We have booze and I *could* make sure we have more pizza..."
Sae says, "Awwwwwww! Yeah Rayne! That's a perfect idea! Lots of beautiful fishies and plants and maybe even coral or somethin'! I bet it'd be fun to swim around with ya Ren! Or even better, watch you swim and stuffs!", giggling at the thought since she's pretty sure a flexible being like Ren would be rather graceful. Looking to Dante as he talks of food, Sae adds "And pie! With a bunny-doodle on it!"
Rayne shakes her head at Ren with a slight grin. "Noooooot what I was talking about, Ren. I meant a tank for you, actually. Like... a place where you can look more at home in the office?" She nods to Sae as she seems to get the idea, then raises an eyebrow at Dante. "Well, sure, you're sitting with my friends... Uh, Rayne Hurris, by the way." No, there's no offering of her hand to him.
"This would be the Dante Sparda," Ren supplies to Rayne with a smile, motioning to him. Ren then glances between Sae and Rayne. "Yes, I realize that you were speaking of something that I could relax in. Of course, I certainly don't mind attention, but I am not sure how I would feel about being a part of a display of caged animals." Ren grins, "I've not heard any calls to liven up the office with a circus act."
One. Two. 1, 2, 3, YEAH~!
No, 'Kocchi Muite Baby' is not suddenly playing on the jukebox. Except maybe in someone's mind. Deis does push the door open quickly, though. She stands in the doorway a moment, looking around inside. She's chosen to go in her human form, so covering her legs is a... well, one could call it a split skirt, but it's more like two hanging panels of cloth, one in front and one in back. It does nothing to hide her legs. "Hello there, lovelies~!" she warbles happily. Since it's not clear whether she's seen the gathering at the table, it's hard to tell who she's actually talking to.
Dante doesn't try to force a handshake on Rayne. If any touching has to occur, they can worry about it l-....So yeah, it's fine! He offers a nod to her and grins. "Yep. That's me. Good old Dante. Good to meetcha, miss Rayne. Feel free to find a s...." He trails off as he notices Deis. THIS is more like it! He grins more widely and offers a wave. "Well HELLO there. How are YOU? In fact, just WHERE have myou been all this time and why haven't we met? Please, come join us! I provide the booze and food stuffs. n.n"
Sae pauses as Deis comes in, freezing place! She's currently crawling on the floor to inspect Ren's floaty-bubble machine thing, and rushes over the same way to peeeeeeeer at Deis' legs "DEIS?! Oh my gosh!!! What happened! Did you misplace your snakey half!?", crawling in circles around the girl a few times, shocked! "Ren Ren Ren! Someone stole Deis's snakey half! Eeeep!"
Rayne blinks and looks at Dante again. "Oh... Wow, I kinda thought he'd vanished into the wastelands or something." She shakes her head to get rid of her surprise before saying, "Yeah, um, I'm actually the second in command of TASK now, so..." Well, she can tell when someone no longer has any attention on her, and it's very very clear that all of Dante's attention is now on Deis. With a light sigh, she waves to the newcommer with a greeting of, "Hello, Miss Deis," before she returns her attention to Serenity. "Well, what I was actually thinking was just a place for you to move more freely in one of the offices, not really as a display or with marine life thrown in. Kind of more like something that was just your desk, really." Sae's antics, however, just get an exasperated sigh from Rayne.
Serenity offers Rayne a sympathetic look as she trails off. Ren eyes follow Sae over to Deis's feet and then to her face. "Hello," Ren says, waving a fin edge to her and looking generally unconcerned by Sae's fear. Returning attention to Rayne, Ren remarks thoughtfully, "I certainly wouldn't mind some additional space without air in it, but the decor should really be for the benefit of the clients. Now, perhaps a fair-sized garden could provide some justification for the addition."
Deis giggles quietly at Dante's words, and heads over to the table. "Well, well. Hi there~," she greets, making to place a hand on Dante's shoulder briefly, in greeting. The smile she offers is partly teasing, partly knowing. She can definitely tell she's not dealing with some random dude here. Though she knows not to point it out, particularly not in public. Sae's crawling about on the floor worried for the state of her snake half gets a laugh. "No no, no one's stolen my scales, Sae," she assures the girl. "I just decided to wear my legs today." She reaches down to ruffle Sae's hair. "Though you'd probably get around faster on your feet," she suggests, with a chuckle. Rayne's greeting gets a smile. "Hello there, Rayne. How are you doing?" Notably he doesn't touch Rayne! Maybe she's got it figured out that much? A wave of greeting is offered to Serenity as well, in return. "And hello to you, too!" Pause, and she listens to Serenity's statement there. "Oh! You mean TASK's HQ? Why not have a network of tubes connecting various tanks all over the facility?" she suggests. "Fishtanks are beautiful, particularly when they're custom. And then with the network of tubes, you could still come and go as you pleased."
Dante wasn't necessarily forgetting about Rayne. He just has to prioritize at times! He nods over to the seat next to him though. "Well, miss Rayne-bow, do feel free to cop a squat by old Mr. Dante over here if you want to n.-" He does indeed offer a wink. That being said, back to 'fertile ground'. He offers Deis a dazzling smile but...falters slightly. He sniffs the air a few times...and his grin widens. He nods to a different seat on the OTHER side of him. "I do have another spot for m'lady?" *wink* Yep. Another wink. He thinks he's smooooth.
"Huh... well, I guess you're right there, Ren." Rayne frowns lightly, but shrugs. "Not sure we could really do a garden... at least not when we're in the TASK building. Might be a note worth remembering if we ever move out, though." She glances at Deis and tilts her head. "Tubes through the facility? Not sure we can really... change the building that much. Uh.... well, I'm fine, though, really." She offers another shrug to emphasize her point, somehow. Dante, however, gets a raised eyebrow. "'Cop a squat'? Uh... sure..." She looks like she thinks she might soon regret her choice, but she does take the offered seat.
Serenity also looks somewhat skeptical of Deis' suggestion, casting a glance to Rayne. "Rayne and Sunset have determined that the decor in the Welcome Center should be more the understated sort, so as not to intimidate anyone," Ren supplies. As Rayne goes to sit by Dante, Ren slides over a bit to take a spot behind and between them. "I believe that you were saying something, Dante," Ren observes with a smile, "about age differences dissuading you from certain lines of conversation?"
Deis smiles brightly and sits down in the seat on Dante's other side when invited. "Thanks! Some people have objections to reptiles sitting next to them," she says teasingly. She's not actually a reptile, especially not in this form, but he's probably picked up the scent. Which might be why the sniffing! Rayne's words of not being able to change the building that much gets a frown. "Oh. Pity, that seems like something I'd love to see. One of these days some office building will have to do that, because they end up hiring a sapient octopus. You watch." She lifts a hand, waggles a finger teasingly. Serenity's words of the welcome center not being intimidating get a nod. "Oh, I guess that makes sense. Though fishtanks can be pretty relaxing as long as you're not putting piranhas and sharks in it." And then she snickers at the mention of Dante's line of conversation. "Oh, I don't think he meant anything by it. It really is difficult to find suitable ones on their knees for the right reasons," she says, in an innocent tone.
Dante nudges a beer over to Rayne, although he has no idea if she drinks. He also gestures at a second pizza that manages to pop up out of nowhere n.n He snerks at Ren. "Is that a subtle way of telling me that I'm misidentifyin' some ages here?" He shakes his head with a laugh...and addresses Deis. "I keep padded kneepads around the DMC for JUST such an occasion. I'd be happy to show you my collection sometime? n.-"
Rayne tilts her head and looks upwards before nodding to Ren. "Well, it wasn't what I was initially thinking, but I think you've convinced me that we should have an aquarium or two." She looks around Dante to nod at Deis. "They really can be relaxing, after all..." Then she raises an eyebrow with a slight cough at what the not-currently-snake woman says afterwords. It's a good thing she didn't have anything to drink just yet, or she probably would have done a spit-take. She then coughs into her hand before saying more directly to Dante, "Well, no one around here is really the age they look, it seems. Well, maybe half of the people. Certainly not Miss Deis and I."
Serenity gives Deis' prediction an amused nod, but just looks confused by the exchange about kneeling. "Yes, I did want to avoid that sort of misunderstanding," Ren agrees, motioning to Dante. "I look exactly my age," Ren cheerfully contributes before continuing, "I do like the idea, Rayne. But I hope that we don't become too focused on the superficial elements and neglect to address the provided services at the Welcome Center, too."
"I will definitely take that into consideration~," Deis replies to Dante's offer, with a wink. Though she giggles at Rayne's words of not looking her age. "That's true. I'm actually..." She trails off. "...Actually I have no idea." Suddenly she slumps in her chair, as if tired. "Obviously really old." Though she also nods at Serenity's statement. "That's true. That place is for newbies to learn. Then again, I'd think Serenity would be a good object lesson for 'this is not your home world', so making sure she's where she can be seen quickly might be a priority."
Rayne says, "Yeah, that's true... I guess Sae's enthusiasm for decorating has apparently rubbed off on me... " She lets out a sigh, then grins at Deis. "Oh, trust me, Ren's filled that purpose plenty of times already. But don't worry! It's not how old you are, it's how old you carry yourself! I'll call someone a quarter of my age an old coot if they act like an old coot, thankyouverymuch!"
Serenity leans over to look curiously at Deis with the shift in her posture, then nods to her supposition. Rayne's bit of information, too, catches Ren's curiosity. "What does an 'old coot' act like, then?" Ren inquires. "Someone who trusts the wisdom of long experience to new information? Someone who insists on unflattering comparisons with 'the good old days'?"
Deis laughs to Rayne's words of 'old coots'. "Oh definitely. My sister was horrible about that. Well, she was horrible about a lot of other things too, but mainly that." She nods sagely. Serenity's words get a smirk. "Ever met someone who was just so rude it was hard to talk to them? Thought they were better because of an older-- and possibly more difficult-- way of doing things? Bonus points if their behavior involves shaking a cane at someone." And she mimics an old curmudgeonly old lady-- she closes one eye, hunches her back forwards, raises her shoulders, and shakes a fist at the air.
Rayne laughs at Deis's antics, and nods to Ren. "Exactly! See, Deis and I both are way older than humans are supposed to be able to be, but we both try to act more like what we look like!" She sobers up a slight, then. "Of course, I've been kinda thrown into things a bit more heavy than my apparent age should be handling... But I can at least be younger when I'm off duty! ...So long as Sae and Flandre aren't around to make me feel old."
"I can't say that I've had the experience of someone too rude for conversation," Ren replies after a moment of thought, "but certainly I have seen the rest." Ren then motions toward Rayne. "That's an intriguing bit of personal information, Rayne," Ren says, regarding her inquisitively. "I never considered the possibility that you might be putting on a mask of some sort."
"Well, 'old' and 'way too freakin' much energy' are two different things," Deis points out. "The latter can happen to people of any age." A wink. As for Serenity's statement? "Everybody wears a mask," she replies. "The differences are what the mask is... and how, why, when, and for how long we wear it." She leans back in the chair, crossing her legs. "You'd think I'd have the freedom to choose all that, but I didn't always. Sometimes there isn't a choice." A surprisingly solemn-sounding statement.
Rayne at the mention of a 'mask,' Rayne visibly deflates a little. "You have no idea, Ren. You have no idea," she says, suddenly sounding a lot more tired. "I'm not gonna put on a mask about who I want to hang out with, what my opinions are, that kind of thing. I'm not gonna straight up lie to you, but..." She shakes her head. "I'm not gonna pretend I'm an open book. I'm not." She then looks up Deis and nods. "It sucks when the choice is taken away. Been there, too. Sometimes, though... It's hard to just take the masks off, even if you want to and there's no outside force preventing it."
Serenity nods thoughtfully at Deis's observation. Ren doesn't deflate or slouch, though, but continues 'kneeling' mostly upright by the table with just a slow station-keeping ripple. "I understand that you have had many more opportunities than I to experience something that you would rather not share, Rayne," Ren reassures. "I wouldn't expect that an aspect of oneself would necessarily be any quicker to recover than to bury in the first place."
People come and go in the Usual Restaurant. As some of them original group depart the place they are quickly replaced by even more patrons drifting inside. In this case, it is none other than Kotal Kahn who enters the premises of the Usual. The doors open abruptly and in filters the light of sun that shines behind his back to accentuate his massive figure, making a flashy entrance as he often does. But the narrative did say patrons, right? That is because Kotal Kahn is not by himself. Perched a top the crews of his Aztec Eagle Knight helmet is a tiny owl that most people present will likely recognize for who it really is. "Greetings and salutations everyone!" Announces the warrior looking to be in a good mood for once. His glowing golden fall upon Deis and instantly all his cheer and good humor is replaced by being paralyzed on the spot. "Uh oh." He tenses up suddenly and leans back and away from the serpent witch, almost as if he was half expecting a glomp.
Oh yes, the tiny owl was on top of the world, or the equivalent, after all she was riding in on a war god as a mount. Tiny talons clutch the corona of Kotal's helm and playfully she beaks at sweep of crimson feathers. As she is carried into the Usual the little owl looks about and hoots a greeting on the heals of Kotal's greeting to the room. Wings flutter and and the little owl fluffs up. Great golden eyes blink as Kotal comes up short and he makes that oddly uncertain sound. "hooot?" she calls and makes a soft beak clacking.
"Like I said. Everyone wears a mask," Deis replies. "No shame in that. It's just part of being... well, I'd say 'human', but that's not accurate. 'Sapient'? It's what separates sapient beings from animals. Also the only thing, ironically enough-- sapient beings can lie." As for aspects of oneself? "They can, or might not be. Hard to say. There's too many variables to put a blanket over that and call it figured out." And then Kotal appears! With an owl on his head! "Oh spirits, that is hilarious and adorable," Deis remarks, with a giggle. She's in her human form here, leaned back in her chair with her legs crossed. Her feet are bare, and she's got golden greaves around her shins and calves. She shifts, to stand and head towards Kotal. But instead of glomping him? She reaches up to the owl. "Do you accept pets and preenings, little one?" she inquires.
Rayne sighs and leans back in her chair, looking up at the rafters. "Aspects, sure, we'll call it that. I wish I could mask some things, but no, I gotta hide the wrong crap sometimes, and I don't even know why." She then glances at Deis. "You've not had many pets, I don't think. I've had some that sure as heck felt like they were lying. I had a dog once that faked a limp all the time to get people to feel sorry for it." Her attention is then diverted to the two entering as Deis' attention is diverted as well. "Oh, hey Kotal, Minu. What brings you two out here today?" Of course she can't help but grin at Kotal's hesitation upon seeing Deis.
Serenity pats the table next to Rayne with a sympathetic look as she sighs. Then, the reactions of Kotal to Deis and Deis to Minu to each other bring a smile to Ren, too. Serenity shifts a pair of fins from the suspended water to flash a wave to Minu and Kotal. "Hello," Ren rasps to te arrivals, motioning toward the table. "Would you join us?"
As one might expect, Kotal winces slightly when Deis' first reaction is to titter in delight at their presence and walk up to them. Fortunately for Aztec, it is not the fellow deity's intention to torture mercilessly with her affection and instead sees another target to try and fraternize with whist breaking major personal space barriers. Kotal sighs as he releases some tension and reaches up to his head to offer Minu a new perch on his finger so she can better see everyone and accept or deny Deis' request as she decides. "Hello again, lady Deis." He offers a more formal salute before turning to his Second. "Patrolling was uneventful so we thought of joining you here this evening." The Aztec returns Serenity's smile moving closer towards the table where all are sitting. "Absolutely. Though dare I ask, what manner of insightful konversation are we interrupting this time?"
The little owl fluffed her feathers as the Lady Deis stepped up close to Kotal. As the lady reaches to pet and speak to her nearly as Kotal offers his finger for her to step up onto, the small owl chooses the war gods finger first. She flutters her wings as she is brought down to a lower level , nearly eye to eyes with the Lady. The little owl hoots then makes a soft hiss and beak clatter. Most who know the little owl know she is not one to let strangers get overly touchy feely with her in this her most vulnerable form. If the Lady were to reach for her again, the tiny elf owl would hop along Kotal's hand to his wrist and then to his arm and away from the offered touches. If truly pressed , the Lady might well get nipped.
"Animals, not pets," Deis replies to Rayne's mention. She winks. "It's contact with people that's taught the animals how. They go 'oh, two-leggers do this thing I want them to do if I just do this thing'. Which, arguably, is the basis of training. They generally aren't really able to consider the consequences, though." That's right, too... Deis doesn't make with the glomping. This time. +_+ Though given Minu's presence and current status relative to Kotal, that might be better for Deis! Though as Minu appears to not want to be petted, Deis draws her hand back. "Aww. That's a pity. You're just so adorable. In either form, mind you." She winks playfully. But, thus thwarted in pettings, she goes back to her seat at the table. As for the conversation-- er, Konversation? "The masks we wear, and how to manage to not be an old coot even after thousands of years," she offers with a smirk.
Rayne nods to Kotal and stifles a laugh at Minu's antics around Deis. "True, true, that's a pretty valid point..." She nods at the point on pets learning the behaviors. "But would you consider certain animals that mimic the behavior of other animals in order to hunt? I'm pretty sure there are some terran insects that do something like that, I've heard? The little beetles that flash, different species hunt the others." She then sighs again at the mention of the masks. "I'll have you know I'm only hundreds, not thousands! Don't confuse me for my father."
"Among other things," Ren replies to Kotal while motioning fin edges to the sides, "I am learning from wiser minds how to remain mentally youthful, flexible, and open into my old age. As that period of my life is rather distant, the lessons may take a while to sink in."
Kotal chuckles softly when Minu declines to be preening by Deis. He cannot blame her, honestly, as even the mighty god of war such as himself also flinches whenever his fellow deity tries to touch him. Something about Deis' demeanor and teasing makes him want to hide his head in the ground like an ostrich instead of acting like his usual proud eagle self. Maybe its a bird/snake dynamic thing.
Nevertheless, Kotal neither reproaches nor encourages Minu, he simply brings the tiny owl elf to rest on his shoulder since she seems to want to steer away from Deis. "Aah, an insightful topic indeed." Offers Kotal as he takes a seat with the others. "And one I can gleefully partake in being as old as konflict itself."
"Personally, it is the thrill of battle that makes me feel revitalized." He says while stretching his arms sideways, flexing his bulging biceps a bit in the process. "Nothing like inventing new and exciting ways to eviscerate my foes to feel young again." Well, everyone probably saw that one coming from miles away. Kotal quite noticeably only wears one mask, and that one is the Eagle helmet he always has on.
"Still just training," Deis replies to Rayne's mention of animals mimicking other animals. "Nature is adaptable. Whatever gets you ahead, that's what you gotta do in nature. It's brutal." Looking to Serenity, "I didn't realize that. Are you pretty young for one of your people? I've never seen another of yours, so I don't have a basis for comparison." Aaaaaaand there goes Kotal flexing again. Deis smiles broadly. "That's it, big guy. Stoke those fires," she teases. See, they were having a moment, and she had to go and ruin it.
Rayne shrugs, not really wanting to argue the point rather than feeling Deis is actually more correct in this manner. "It helps, Serenity, to still look youthful. If I looked like I was in, say, my eighties, I'd probably act that way just because... It's what I'd see in the mirror." She motions to the mirror behind the bar as she says this. Okay, bad mirror for this example. "But I look under twenty, so I feel comfortable acting that way usually." She then glances at Kotal. "...Of course you would." Deis' comment to Kotal, however, is met with a sigh into a facepalm.
"A young adult, albeit with a rather shorter expected lifespan than some others here," Ren replies to Deis. Unlike Deis, Ren does not seem amused by Kotal's behavior. Ren frowns and uncomfortably scratches at the beginnings of the gill-feathers as he offers his advice. Rayne's explanation gets a thoughtful nod. Ren starts to follow her gesture but then looks at the ceiling instead of the mirror before returning eyes to her. "I suppose that I never gave much thought to how my appearance affected my personality. Now, in the other direction, the exercise demanded by my interests does affect my appearance, ensuring that I don't end up looking limp and round."
Kotal is suddenly reminded why is it exactly about Deis advances that makes him feel uncomfortable. She makes him feel incredibly objectified. The mighty warrior, who was once enjoying himself at the thought of inventing new creative way of slaughtering people, suddenly pales when Deis starts eyeing him and nearly licking her lips as if he were a tasty morsel. The Aztec tenses up and lowers his arms, no longer feeling like showing off his physique. "Youthfulness tends to be needed in most cases of immortality." He decides to offer despite Deis' cat calls (or are those snake calls?). "It would be far harder to maintain my position as the god of war if my body was subject to the changes of time. I would not be so eager to engage in warfare if my body refused to cooperate."
"Most mortals do not have this luxury, and must put down their weapons at some point despite what their spirits may desire."
Deis makes a face when Rayne points the mirror out. "Not THAT mirror," she notes. "Specifically not that one. That one needs to go away, it's creepy." Though Ren's mention of exercise gets a nod. "Yeah, it's not all about looking young. But taking care of yourself makes it better." A grin. Though surprisingly she is helpful when Kotal speaks up. "Unfortunately, that's true," she says. "Lifespans are definitely a thing, and they're pretty unforgiving. A mortal being can take care of themselves perfectly and they'll still die. Feeling young can only go so far. So it's a little different for non-mortals."
Rayne laughs a bit. "Well, Ren, the current company is a really bad example of average life expectancies." She shakes her head, then frowns. "Let's... change this subject. It's too... depressing. It doesn't matter, sometimes, if we're immortal..." She shakes her head again sadly before looking up. "I'd rather talk about something more... optimistic tonight."
Serenity simply nods in reply to Deis' observation, motioning out to the sides. With Rayne's words, Serenity regards her sympathetically for a moment before supplying another subject in a brighter tone of voice. "Well, you heard that I was shopping for breathing gear for humans. I was looking for an all-in-one solution to breathing, speaking, and hearing and not finding it." Ren continues, "Johann's suggestion to to find a partial solution was more fruitful." Ren motions toward Rayne, "You mentioned something about wanting to see the kelp forest in the summertime?"
Kotal can understand Rayne's apprehension even if he actively and shamelessly engages in topics of death and violence constantly. He is a god of warfare, and basically being made of battle makes him quite comfortable with the subject despite the morbidity of it. As the topic changes to the talk of underwater, Kotal smirks and offers in Serenity's direction. "Wishing to intrude in Morgana's realm, are you?" That ought to be interesting.
Suddenly, however, he is standing with Minu still perched on his shoulder looking somewhat alarmed. "Ah, my apologies, ladies, but I suddenly remember that I did have something to do." He says somewhat mysteriously and makes his way back to the door.
Deis nods to Rayne's request, but she doesn't immediately speak up. Mainly because she's not quite sure what to change the subject to. Though Serenity provides one! "There's always magic, though that's my suggestion for everything, I admit," she offers. "An enchantment could let air-breathers breathe underwater. Or if you want to work with science, some experimentation with fluorocarbons might hold the answer. It's all about increasing the surface area of oxygen-absorbing tissue. There's not enough in a lung." and then Kotal's suddenly taking his leave. "Awww.... visit for longer next time, won'tcha sweetie? You always light up a room." She giggles at her own joke.
Rayne says, "I dunno, Ren, that device you showed could easily hold a small comm system inside it for ease of communicating. Set up an underwater microphone and speaker inside your apartment it connects to? And we're not intruding, we're visiting! There's a big difference there! Tourism is always a valuable industry!" she protests before tilting her head as Kotal suddenly leaves with Minu. "Huh... I guess he had more to do on his patrol... Oh, crap, I'd actually better get going, myself... I'm supposed to relieve Sunset in ten minutes," she says as she glances at a clock. "Sorry to cut and run as well, but, well, work and all that." She then winks to Deis. "Not that you'd know what that's like right now, right? See you two later!" With that, she heads for the door."