Portal Breach: The Collision of Worlds :: v.4.0


    Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

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    Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg)

    Post by Lawrence on Sun Oct 23, 2011 10:00 pm

    Time: 8:00 PM
    Date: 10/23/2011

    Lawrence's wanderings had gone a bit later into the day and then the night than usual, and he didn't care one bit. He would return to Factory Zeta when he was good and ready, though to be honest he was considering heading for Jo's house and asking if he could spend the night. He saw her and the Evil Emperor sporadically in the Sanctuary, but other than that, he really hadn't been with either for long since their furniture shopping trip. The all too familiar feeling of loneliness swirled in the depths of his systems as he walked, and a faint sigh escaped him.

    The butler had been to the park earlier in the month and saw some of the changes fall brought, but in the dark they were even more apparent. The fireflies that were there during the summer were nowhere to be found, and he could only hear a few crickets as compared to the hundreds back then. There were fallen leaves all over the place in varying colors, though the trees still had some of their foliage remaining. It was also a good bit colder outside than it was in the summer, though it wouldn't bother Lawrence unless it dipped far below freezing.

    It was strangely quiet, and even less people were around than the one night Lawrence was here with Samara. Suddenly feeling even more lonely than before, the butler thought about leaving the park, but just kept walking anyway. If no one he knew appeared in the next few minutes, he would head for Jo's place as he had no desire to spend the night alone.
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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Zurg on Sun Oct 23, 2011 10:22 pm

    Oho, Lawrence... What are you doing out here, all by yourself? Don't you know, my boy? There are monsters that lurked in the dark, and not all of them were particularly friendly at this late hour... In fact, one such monster was about to come around right... about... now.

    Click... click.... click...

    There was something approaching the butler's way, something with a rhythmic pattern. If the robot was keen, he would recognize it as a person's steps, but most footwear didn't make such a pointed noise, did they? No, no. The sound obviously came from heels, but not a woman's heel. No, these were metallic, solid. A boot, perhaps? It remained yet to be seen, the steady repetition becoming more pronounced as the owner drew near.

    Lawrence didn't have to puzzle it out for long, however. From his cozy spot in the park, he would be able to make out a very familiar outline. Horns, broad shoulders, cape; ah, yes. It was none other than the Evil Emperor Zurg, but it was interesting. What was the self-proclaimed tyrant of all evil doing out here, walking around all by himself? Wasn't that a bit odd, don't you think? Shouldn't he be doing things like, say, coming up with evil ideas, dastardly weapons, horrific plots for the population to thwart? Walking around alone was hardly evil, unless he was planning to cause some late night mischief. That was most likely not the case as no weapon was out or a legion of robot guards.

    Well, whatever the reason, Zurg had seemed not to notice Lawrence and in that, the butler had a unique advantage. Wonder where the despot was going?


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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Lawrence on Mon Oct 24, 2011 9:41 am

    Lawrence just blinked in confusion as the Evil Emperor walked right past him without noticing he was there. His first thought was to call out to Zurg, to make him notice, but somehow he had the feeling that wouldn't be the best idea. Curiosity eventually won out over any faint outrage he felt, and he followed Zurg with his optics, not moving just yet. What in the Breach could have the alien so distracted that he didn't even see his minion standing there? It could be something of no importance or something dangerous, but in either case, the butler intended to find out and began tailing his master.

    Lawrence wasn't quite built for stealth, but he had the programming and training for it, as well as years of experience in sneaking around while looking for decent sniper's nests. He dimmed the lights in his optics and audio receptors as they were more for others' benefit than his own, and moved from the paved path and into the grass alongside it. Thankfully it had rained recently, which would keep the rustling of fallen leaves at a minimum. He followed Zurg as quietly as he could, occasionally using the bushes and trees along the way for cover. Sure, the Evil Emperor probably would hear him eventually, but the butler was going to try his best to stay hidden for as long as he could.

    Now then, Zurg, what are you up to?
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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Zurg on Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:28 am

    While the robot butler was making apt use of his Assassin's Creed skills, they certainly had worked their magic. The Evil Emperor, for the most part, showed no signs of noticing Lawrence in the slightest and the towering alien merely kept his aimless, calm gait. He simply kept heading straight down the sidewalk, eyes determined forward and oblivious to everything surrounding them. It was quite odd, really. Didn't the Evil Emperor often boast that his hearing was impeccable? He seemed to make great use of it in the Sanctuary, pointing out people's hushed whispers or less-than-confident remarks.

    They were nearing the edge of the park now, a large bush an indicator of the corner about to come up. Due to being in front, the Evil Emperor rounded it without incident, his heels still going click... click... click... Would Lawrence follow faithfully behind, or would he try for something more... debonair?

    Really, what was Zurg up to...


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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Lawrence on Mon Oct 24, 2011 8:03 pm

    Lawrence was a bit surprised he managed to stay unnoticed, but he wasn't about to let that go to his processor. He kept his slow and steady pace while trailing Zurg, knowing better than to try anything too fancy. He knew damn well that the sort of things used in the various spy holovids Nefarious liked to watch would never work, and had seen numerous young recruits to Solana's black ops squads pay with their lives for trying them. That was one of the reasons that he disliked Clank so much, that the logical little robot would agree to star in such insults to the shadier business most governments get into.

    Not letting that thought distract him, the butler noticed his target rounding a bush up ahead. He approached it carefully, trying not to let his feet make too much noise when he had to get back onto the path again. When he got to the bush, he used it for cover but made sure not to touch it as that would make the leaves rustle. Lawrence peered around the bush, watching Zurg walk up ahead. He was beginning to think his master was just stringing him along . . . surely the Evil Emperor would have heard something by now, right? Still, the robot kept tailing him, still too curious to give up on seeing what the alien was up to.
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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Zurg on Mon Oct 24, 2011 10:47 pm

    Was the Evil Emperor stringing Lawrence along? The butler would have to find out as Zurg stopped at a kitty corner, looked both ways, and crossed the street. Hm, seemed like he was heading for the freeway overpass. What was over there? Nothing but vagrants and transients, if the locals were right. Oh... no, wait. Spoke too soon. The tyrant took an expected turn down an alley out of sight, and vanished, his cape quickly trailing.

    Click..... Click......... Click........................

    It sounded like he was getting away! Hurry, Lawrence, ride like the wind!


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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Lawrence on Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:28 pm

    Lawrence followed the Evil Emperor out of the park, hopefully staying at enough of a distance to not be detected. Initially it looked like Zurg was heading for the freeway overpass, but there was really nothing of interest over there. Soon enough, he ended up changing directions, ducking down an alley and disappearing from sight.

    The butler was still able to get a reading from the Emperor's armor, and so he used that to track him until he could catch sight of Zurg again. He followed quickly and quietly, also proceeding into the alley. While Lawrence was quite focused on following his master, he wasn't so focused on it as to drop his guard completely. No, just about anything could happen in these back streets, so his sensors were primed to pick up on anyone else approaching as well. So far it was only him and the purple alien in the vicinity, though.

    Inwardly Lawrence was starting to debate on whether this was such a good idea, but still he kept following.
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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Zurg on Tue Oct 25, 2011 4:26 am

    Still holding on, my boy? How nice.

    Just them around, it didn't look like the Evil Emperor being out so late was of any real purpose. Typically villains came out to harm the masses, didn't they? Being out at this hour had little benefit to either party. Still, why were both out regardless?

    The alley ended up opening again onto a main boulevard and at last Zurg walked out, still rather oblivious to Lawrence tailing him. Of course the robot better be on his guard, as this street was poorly lit and rather dark. Feral cats could be heard yowling, garbage pails disturbed. If one were to scan around, there was hardly anything worth noting here. Just some shops, bus benches, teenagers defying their curfew; your typical city streets. Oh, and one intergalactic criminal who had obscured himself from Lawrence view for the third time. This was no doubt getting to be all kinds of annoying on Lawrence's end, but would his rising irritation lead him to ignore an important fact?

    Click... click... click...

    A stabilized rhythm, and unbeknownst to Lawrence, Zurg, while out of the robot's vision, turned around and slipped through yet another opening. This opening, however, led straight back into the alley and now Lawrence was the subject of stalking.

    Oh, yes. The despot had been very aware of that lingering presence.

    As Lawrence continued to walk ahead, tailing a ghost, the Evil Emperor quietly crept up from the darkened shadows of the alley, eyes aglow and metal talons extended, to place a heavy gauntlet upon one of the robot's shoulders at last. "Lawrence."


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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Lawrence on Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:45 am

    To his credit, while Lawrence did end up jumping and let out a startled gasp when Zurg suddenly gripped his shoulder from behind, he kept enough control to not immediately defend himself. Anyone else, he would've either grabbed their wrist and tossed them into the nearest wall, or just turned and shot them. A certain Evil Emperor should be thanking his lucky stars he spoke up while the butler was still startled but before he could react, though.

    There was a shake in Lawrence's voice as he recovered from his slight scare. "Y-your Evilness? Fancy meeting you here." When there was no response for a few seconds, the butler sighed and then continued. There was no point in keeping up the pretext that he actually managed to sneak up on his master. "So, how long were you aware that I was following you? I'll have you know I was not planning anything untoward . . . I was only curious as to what you were doing."

    A pause, and then he spoke a bit more quietly. "I've missed you, as well..."


    Last edited by Lawrence on Tue Oct 25, 2011 6:37 am; edited 1 time in total
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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Zurg on Tue Oct 25, 2011 6:26 am

    Ah, Lawrence... Figured you wouldn't be far from your master's shadow. Zurg released his heavy hand from the robot's shoulder and withdrew it back to the confines of his cape. While he would have normally been amused at the butler's startled state, the Evil Emperor seemed... rather exhausted. His face wasn't easily seen thanks to remaining in the darkened overhang of an awning above, but the reddened glow of his eyes was duller than usual. It wasn't quite as withering, which was possibly a good thing.

    "Yes, fancying meeting you here, as well." And his voice didn't have that typical antagonistic lilt, either. It was rather dry and subdued. "I noticed you following me back at the park, where you were sitting at a bench. I didn't bother to disturb you, seeing as how I like my own privacy when wandering these streets alone." Something was off, but would Lawrence be able to put a finger on it? Finally the tyrant left the sanctuary of the shadows and he walked forward, perhaps too fast for Lawrence to get a proper look at him. He was now back upon the sidewalk, paused under the amber glow of a nearby streetlight, and Zurg glanced around both ways to assess his surroundings.

    The robot missed him, huh? Sometimes Zurg ended up forgetting how long he had been away, or how rapidly the calendar started to diminish to the end of the year. Days were starting to feel like a blur to him. "Missed me, did you." That should have been a question, but it lacked the proper curious tone. "It seems you are not the only duty I've managed to neglect."

    A sense of duty? Now where have we seen that before.

    ((My last post for the early morning -- both here and for the NOS thread. Night, Shadow!))


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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Lawrence on Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:48 am

    Lawrence immediately noticed the change in attitude, knowing very well how much it usually amused his master to scare him. To hear Zurg sounding so subdued afterward definitely sent up alarm bells in his mind. Likewise, the rushing forward just fast enough that the butler couldn't get a good look at him was another indicator that something was definitely wrong here. Concerned, the robot followed the Evil Emperor out onto the sidewalk, and then under the streetlight. He started to look up at his boss, only to pause and then look away, not sure if he had permission to see if the alien looked as tired as he sounded.

    Even if Lawrence wasn't quite willing to push things in that manner yet, he was still perfectly capable of speaking, and so he did just that. "Your Evilness? There's something wrong, isn't there." As with some of his master's words, that was not a question. Not content to leave it at that, the butler went on, trying his best to sound accepting above all else. "I may not understand it all immediately, but I will listen if you are willing to speak."

    What went unsaid was the thought that this was one of Lawrence's duties that he was neglecting as of late. It wasn't something programmed, and didn't have anything to do with his duty as a minion. No, offering a kind audio receptor to listen was simply part of his duties as Zurg's friend. Inwardly, he hoped his master wouldn't push him away.
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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Zurg on Tue Oct 25, 2011 2:05 pm

    Friends. Zurg never really had friends, and it was quite apparent the more he socialized on Portal Breach. He was awkward and clumsy around them, both caring and abusive, and never sure how to handle them when they needed emotional or physical support. As such, the Evil Emperor often times appeared either very selfish or sadly lame.

    But not this time.

    For a first of what would hopefully be many, the Evil Emperor at last lowered a defense. Not all, but a defense. "Yes, something is terribly wrong, but I don't want to speak of it out in the open. I don't trust this world anymore. Lawrence..." And here the alien turned to face the faithful butler finally, but it was not the face of his master that would look down upon him. It was Zurg, but a hollow and empty Zurg. There was a waning sign of life in his eyes and his usual scowl was not apparent. If anything, he seemed like he was just going through the motions. The motions of what, would hopefully be addressed. "Can you find somewhere secure enough to speak? I've wandered these streets for months, and there are other competing powers here that make use of them along with me. Once you find a location, lead the way and we'll talk." Hmm, a rather passive position the tyrant was taking. Complete trust in the butler's hands at finding a suitable spot?

    This might be an interesting night...


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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Lawrence on Tue Oct 25, 2011 6:59 pm

    That he managed to get Zurg to drop one of his defenses was quite a shock, but Lawrence kept his expression neutral. Even when the Emperor finally turned to face him and he saw the emptiness there, he kept a tight grip on his emotions. The last thing he wanted Zurg to do was mistake his sympathy for pity. The Emperor's request to find somewhere secure to talk was a surprise as well, but as it was also a sign of trust, it was a welcome one. The butler nodded, then motioned for his master to follow. "Very well, Your Evilness. I know the perfect place, though I hope it's secluded enough for you."

    Lawrence began to lead the way, and it seemed as if he was going back the way they came, off towards the park. Indeed, he was headed there, and on their arrival he kept walking, leading Zurg to one of the far corners in the rear of the park. It was well off the paths, and no one would be going back there that late at night. The butler skirted around the bottom of a hill, and on the other side, there was an elegant stone table and seats that would've been shaded by the trees above it if it was still light out. Sitting at the table, one could see a stunning view of a nearby pond if they cared to look. Perhaps it would've been a romantic spot during the day, but that was not what he was going for . . . no, just the fact that it was rather hard to find was the only thing that mattered in this case.

    The butler indicated the table and moved to sit. "Well, here we are. I do hope this is suitable..."
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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Zurg on Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:22 pm

    That was correct. The Evil Emperor wasn't looking for sympathy or pity; he just wanted someone to talk with. Talking, he had to admit, was one of the few things he liked to do and he did trust Lawrence enough with the task. Upon hearing that the minion knew a perfect place to have a chat, the Evil Emperor followed obediently and made up the back of the party. He strangely didn't desire to lead for once.

    They were soon heading back in the direction of the park, and the smell of damp leaves replaced the aroma of wet asphalt. It was dark now, the sun long set, and the birds had gone to roost. As they walked the grass was plush and soft, neither of the pair making much sound besides the rustling through the miniature jungle. At last they came before a secluded park table complete with chairs, and Zurg scanned the area with a few glances before agreeing to approach the seating arrangements. No one should be out around this time, right? He took the chair closest to Lawrence, unlike what he would normally do, and he sat down quietly.

    "I've always loved the park at night," Zurg began weakly, resting his cumbersome hands upon the table and peering out at the world. "It feels like I can enjoy the beauty of nature alone, and I don't have to worry about appearances or people's impressions about me. Why do you like the park, Lawrence? I notice you frequent it just as well."

    Huh... that was interesting.


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    Re: Drifting Aimlessly (tag: Zurg, those with permission)

    Post by Lawrence on Tue Oct 25, 2011 9:42 pm

    Lawrence noted how unusual it was for Zurg to sit beside him rather than across from him, and took it as a sign of how much his master needed to talk to someone he trusted. It would likely take a bit to get to the actual problem, but he was willing to listen as long as it took. The butler was a tad annoyed with himself for taking so long to notice something was wrong with the Evil Emperor; normally he was much more observant than that. He kept that to himself, though . . . right now, the important thing was listening to Zurg.

    The first thing said would qualify as small talk, but that was all right. Lawrence glanced at their surroundings for a second to take in the sights before facing Zurg again and replying. "I enjoy this place for much the same reasons as you do. Even during the day, it's quiet and peaceful, and most people will mind their own business. If one really wants to be alone with their thoughts, there are always secluded spots like this that are rarely frequented by anyone. I'm sure it must seem odd that a mechanical being like myself would enjoy nature, but I find it so much more relaxing than being out in the city proper, or even at the Factory."

    The butler quieted then, to allow Zurg to respond.

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