Nov 28, 2020 9:31 AM
season two: in which the council notices our heroes
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Past the lakes of fire there are cities. On closer inspection they are inhabited by human-sized cockroach-things. 

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...do you, uh, know how to talk to human-sized cockroaches?

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Osanwë works with most things with thoughts, these have thoughts -

- uh, you're freaking them out. They're contemplating calling up various things that could fight you, there's - oh, there's humans here too, they're a food source 'cause they regenerate pretty fast, I think...lots of people have one? And stores do...

 

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Someone decides to call up a thing to fight her, apparently. It coalesces out of the sky into a batlike form, made of sharp black glittering bits, and speeds at them.

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- um, so, do I want to fight this thing or run away or put up forcefields while you try to sustain some kind of conversation, or -

She's going with forcefields by default.

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Honestly I'm not remotely qualified for cockroach diplomacy! I wanna tell them to hand over all their humans but I can't even figure out whether humans are in fact their primary food source! 

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Kind of also not qualified for this! Uh -

She dodges the thing; it's a little harder when she has to think about her Alex-bubble but she's mostly able to stay ahead of it.

- we could probably get them some other food but I don't know what we can get them on short notice that's - renewable -

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I want to know why humans are renewable! That is not default human behavior!

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Yeah, I guess not - mrrgh - I can probably keep dodging if you're making progress -

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The vast majority of these stupid cockroaches are thinking about cockroach celebrities and their cockroach jobs and not what percentage of their food is carved off still-living humans tied to poles in their pantry. I'm not getting anything at all off the bat thing.

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Oh, if it's not alive I can probably just -

She summons, like, a hundred green spears and simultaneously stabs it with all of them.

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There's more stuff descending from the clouds now.

I want to get out of here for now, circle the planet looking for more lakes of fire?

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On it.

She flies.

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There are some more lakes of fire; some are empty of humans and some quite densely populated. Maybe another ten thousand people in total.

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Well, they're all gonna get scooped. Luckily flight speed isn't something she's super constrained on.

(Getting people out through the sewers is harder. On the second trip she drills through the earth to give herself more space. Maybe the repairs will come out of the Mayor's Evil Budget or something.)

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Hopefully the airforce base is equipped for thousands more medical emergencies.

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They're almost definitely not, but they're just gonna have to deal.

OK, any thoughts on the cockroaches?

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Yep, I wanna stop for ten minutes and discuss things. Ten full minutes even if we make our minds up faster.

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...all right.

She flies them to a mostly empty part of hell and lands.

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Most of those houses have humans in them. People keep humans in their pantries and cut bits off them when they want meat, because it grows back - I think humans are indestructible, here, and it sure isn't like anything else grows here. I - don't really know what the fuck to do about this, I guess we can just smash our way through a lot of houses but they're gonna fight back and I don't think we can negotiate with them because it is not clear that they have any other food sources. Also not sure the humans will keep having regenerating powers in our world, because it didn't look like the burned ones did. I'd say about half of them have injuries that ought to be lethal?

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I might think of a brilliant plan in a second, but I don't think we can meaningfully solve this with two days of us and two hours of everyone else. We can maybe fix it later, if the portal stays open, not that we have a great way of accessing it without someone who can fly. Depends a lot on the population and resources of the people who live here.

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I haven't thought of a brilliant way to solve it with smashing things either. 

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Um - I think some green lanterns have ever been able to turn invisible via light manipulation but I have no idea how to do this and I can't reasonably quickly kidnap people one by one anyway. I have not yet tried to contact Oa but I guess in theory they could be out in space somewhere and we should check that so we don't accidentally unmake trillions of people. If they existed they could help. Um - the American government could maybe do something but it's not like these are citizens - well, some of them maybe are, depending on how they ended up here - and I don't really wanna send people into a humanitarian war anyway -

I bet we could come up with a way to grow food here, but I don't know how we'd handle the diplomacy side of things -

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We make Maitimo do it. How would we come up with a way to grow food here, I wouldn't expect us to be more qualified than the locals -

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They don't seem to have, like, plant life? NASA's been doing stuff with growing plants in greenhouses. I bet Earth has people who could grow plants in space now, and if we can grow plants in space we should be able to grow them in hell, right? If they're obligate carnivores that's a lot harder but not, like, completely hopeless -

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