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Bowed down to temptation. Joining in here with [livejournal.com profile] nagasvoice and [livejournal.com profile] greenjudy in exploring the bug-infested potential world they've created. For some idea of what the HELL this is all about, check out their journals (under the tag "snake crossover" in GJ's, and all OVER the place in Naga's).



The thing, whatever it is, is not human. Neither is Wren, according to some people, but her humanity is something that can be argued, questioned. There are lots of questions she’d like to ask this, but none of them end in anything even remotely like, “So you’re human, then?”

She pants, leans back against the wall – corrugated steel rough with rust, her jacket slides along the surface, and the rasping noises seem almost too loud for tender eardrums. Shit. The thing took…a lot of killing. She hasn’t pulled the stops out that far in a long time.

Jian squats next to it, the thing that looked like a man until Wren announced herself and asked to see some identification, and reaches out with one black-gloved hand, lifts a – are those mandibles? He lets the jointed, saw-edged dagger of bone or horn or chitin or whatever it is drop, and it hangs from the thing’s mouth, strangely stiff. It has antennae. Too many of them. Any is too many, really, but it has more than any natural insect she's ever seen.

Insect. It feels like an insect. A beetle. She stares at the compound eyes, already filmy with death.

Jian gets up and comes to her, checks her over. There are a few cuts – one of them feels odd, a bit tingly, almost numb, and as she realizes it she pulls her open jacket aside, looks down at the slice in her shirt and the already puffy, reddening skin around what should be a minor injury. She raises her eyes to Jian’s face. “I think maybe we should get this thing to Laith, see what he says.”

Jian nods, gaze fixed on the wound on her side. “I think you’re right.”

They find a piece of tarp to wrap it in, careful to avoid the – claws, talons. What. Ever. It’s heavy, now that it’s limp and dead. Hard to believe it was able to move as fast as it did. Takes both of them to get it over and into the stakeout vehicle across the street.

“This was supposed to be a simple bust,” Wren gasps, a bit dismayed by the sweat on her arms, the liquid she can feel trickling down between her shoulder blades. She’s chilly, not hot. The muscles in her side under the cut are doing some funny things, seizing up and then relaxing. “A break from the rougher stuff. What happened?”

Jian doesn’t have an answer for her.

Date: 2008-08-26 07:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greenjudy.livejournal.com
Shit.

Be careful of latent markers, for tracking purposes; those can be secreted in venom, saliva even.

Date: 2008-08-26 09:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kiyakotari.livejournal.com
Fuuuun idea. >=D Not something Wren, Jian, or the rest of WUNPO would think to look for, at least not immediately. This whole thing is way outside of their realm of experience.

The way I'm approaching this draws heavily on the time bending stuff you guys were postulating. Works on the idea of the war having taken place in a...pocket outside of normal time. See, my crew's world is advanced, but not nearly as advanced as all the bug-stuff and Kipling stuff. It's like...Wren and Darryl and their contemporaries were the predecessors, technologically speaking, of Hideo and others like her. And the tech used to alter the bugs, to design Dance and such, could have grown out of that. So we could say there's some continuity there, however flimsy. That's all I need to play a bit. ^_~

Assuming that these pockets can bend and warp a bit, we can have an intersection of the WUNPO world-period and the Snake-bit world period and the future/past/neverending war period. Or something like that.

I swear it makes sense in my head.

Date: 2008-08-27 03:12 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nagasvoice.livejournal.com
Yeah, that. And I think some of the intersections which aren't officially mapped probably run through Simon's Strangeways network.
I'm still wondering about Edward's comment on the Caves of Altamira.

Date: 2008-08-27 04:45 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kiyakotari.livejournal.com
Yeah, no kidding! Wren and Jian are older here than I usually write them, too. I'm getting a late-30's read, maybe early 40's. Aiko's already moved out, on her own. That would make Hideo - hell, that means Hideo and Aiko have probably already met. ^_^ Cool.

Date: 2008-08-27 04:57 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nagasvoice.livejournal.com
I'm reading it that way too, which is *really* interesting. And Wren's picked up a few extra tricks during that time which helped her here, is the odd impression I get. That's itneresting. Where are we getting that from in the words you gave us??

Date: 2008-08-27 05:08 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kiyakotari.livejournal.com
I went over it all again, from the reader perspective. I think the main cue is here:

She hasn't pulled the stops out that far in a long time.

Date: 2008-08-27 06:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nagasvoice.livejournal.com
Yeah, I agree, I think that's it. Isn't that intriguing?
And I should mention I love how that first paragraph ends, such a great sentence.

Date: 2008-08-27 03:11 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nagasvoice.livejournal.com
It might also be a two-part poison with the marker, so that another bug can trail them and smack her with something innocuous that triggers the first poison.
Fun guys, these. I love the description of the saw-edged something or other.
Lordy, wouldn't Simon love to get a look at it too?

Date: 2008-08-27 03:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greenjudy.livejournal.com
He would, though bugs are not his metier.

Date: 2008-08-27 04:47 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kiyakotari.livejournal.com
Or a poison that, while it wasn't too much for her system to handle right now - even though it should have been, the feeling I'm getting from this is a paralytic, the kind that takes your lungs out of the picture - did weaken things a bit, overtax them, and so another dose of something similar might be too heavy.
Edited Date: 2008-08-27 04:48 am (UTC)

Date: 2008-08-27 04:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nagasvoice.livejournal.com
Ahh, yes, like snake venom that paralyzes your diaphragm.
Is somebody eventually going to need to perform CPR on her until her liver can detox the poison and the muscle is functional again?

Date: 2008-08-27 05:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kiyakotari.livejournal.com
Very possibly, if she gets hit with another dose. Gotta love that weird metabolism - it's technically fatal, but, HEY, maybe this liver can handle it! Oh? Yeah? Cool! ^_^

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