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


    In the Shadow of Trepidation...

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    In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Mortis on Mon May 11, 2015 9:08 pm

    Time: 6:00 PM
    Date: May 11, 0006

    ...There walked decay.

    Shambling across the grasslands was a most gruesome form, a leather uniform, tattered and worn clung tightly to a body that was emaciated to the point of being near skeletal. Ribs could be easily viewed against the black, shiny material, nearly each and every one with any tilt or turn that the being made. Where there was a lack of leather, green, rancid skin took its place. Leathery clawed feet tromped among the fertile green, grasses and flowers wilting and turning a dead, dry brown. Maggots and slimy worms wriggled and writhed up from the earth where he had walked, any creature that passed into the traveling pestilence's aura promptly withering and falling dead to the ground.

    As one would expect, it made for a rather blatant and easy trail to follow, as this creature left a permanent stain of blackish brown across the grasslands, an inky line to reveal his movements. As for its name? One only needed to glance at his chest, for upon it was a wooden badge, carved in a mirror visage of the sheep skull upon his shoulders, along with the name MORTIS carved in large, thick letters. Yes, none other than the honorable Judge Mortis had decided to travel out this way, nearly identical to a trip that had transpired but months ago.

    However, this evening there was no sign of his caped brother, he was traveling alone.

    Though his travel was silent, within his mind a myriad of thoughts were puzzling themselves out...

    Do not bring a single scale upon Kev's head to harm, he remembered promising the night before. No tossing him out of windows like what had transpired earlier on... Yes, he would need to remain polite, he would need to remain patient. At least until the green sinner had done something to warrant a swift, effective punishment. Hm, something promising to look forward to, hopefully. Unlike, Fear however, the rotted Judge of Decay brought with him no concealed treats or tea, only the judicial tools that were required to get the job done sat within his belt pouches, and only rotted organs and maggots sat within the tatters that were his uniform.

    All the same, the ghoul was mindful of his aura as he reached Kev's house and ascended up the porch with a creak of wooden steps beneath his bare feet. Upon approaching the door, the ghoul paused for a short moment, claws curling slightly while he pondered this entire exercise. After all, what did he need to get to know Kev? The alien himself held little interest in getting to know him until last night. Who would say that after a few days he would have merely dropped all this interest and went back to his old behavior? Mortals were not exactly all that long lived in their grudges, were they. Finite life spans made for finite memories... After a while likely he would not have remembered anything at all from that night.

    Nonetheless, here he was. It was a little late for having second thoughts about a meeting he had agreed to earlier on in the morning. Thus, he raised his hand and gave a knock on the door.

    Rap, rap, rap!

    After all, he had said that he would do this if it would make his brother's plans go smoother, and above all he wanted to make sure things went off without a hitch, both externally and internally.
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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Kev on Tue May 12, 2015 5:23 am

    As far as 'nights' go, last night had been one of those nights that...could have gone better. One sheep pun later and he had been chucked out of a window. Everything probably would have been fine afterwards except that Kev hadn't had the best reaction afterwards. Passive aggressive comments, hostility abound, being an angry and belligerent little alien. It was pretty bad, and thinking back on it still made him feel rather ashamed and embarrassed. It could have been a lot better, but if anything did come out of it, it was that Mortis had offered to meet up with Kev. Frankly, he thought it was a great idea. Just that night, he and Fear had discussed the possibility that Mortis may have been feeling left out. His own comments and behavior the previous night seemed to point to feeling left out rather then feeling protective. At the very least, having time to get to know each other would give him the chance to talk to him and see how Mortis felt.

    Kev really did like Mortis. At least, he certainly didn't hate the man with a sheep skull. He was brother to Fear, and he was not nearly as socially awkward as Fear, so he could keep up a good conversation sometimes. However, he really didn't know much about Mortis besides what Fear had told him. Mortis was a Judge. Mortis had the power to rot things. Mortis really liked giving little skull kissies. It wasn't exactly an expansive list...and with Kev's relationship to Fear, Mortis was obviously going to be a part of that. If they were going to get along and co-exist, they would need to understand each other. Surely, they could do it! Even if he hadn't learned anything new or created some connection, at least he would have upheld his part in letting Mortis see the sheep. It had been nearly a year, after all.

    The alien did not spend much time worrying about the meeting with Mortis, he had faith that it would go well. Kev went about his daily life. He did his job, he took care of the animals, he tidied up, until finally the time had come. Though Kev didn't need to look at the clock to know that their meeting was encroaching. Though he was definitely used to Fear's aura, he could still pick up on the fact that someone was approaching. Someone who brought with them, much rot. At least spring was ending, so it wasn't like fresh flowers were being destroyed. By the time the Judge was rapping his knuckles on the wood, the alien was shoving every single smaller animal out the back door. "It won't kill you to go outside for a few minutes!" Time with Fear had acclimated the animals to the aura of the undead. However, Mortis' aura could be different. Besides, Oscar had a slight...toe stealing tendency, and the last thing he needed was one of the animals getting Mortis angry. So outside they go!

    Kev slammed the door shut so that no one would slink back in. He turned on his heel and straightened his clothes out. His hands moved over everything to dust off his clothes, smooth out any wrinkles and make sure he didn't answer the door looking like some sort of slob. The scaly alien strolled over to the door and opened it wide. "Hey, hope you didn't wait too long." Kev shifted out of the way so that Mortis could enter the rather narrow entrance without trouble. "You can go ahead and sit down, and I can get the tea started. Unless you'd rather go see the sheep right away, it depends on what you'd prefer." He wasn't sure if maybe the ghoul may want to sit for a spell or if he wanted to get right down to seeing the sheepies outside of the barn. Maybe this...wouldn't be exactly as easy as he thought it would be.


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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Mortis on Wed May 13, 2015 4:00 am

    The moment the ghoul's knuckled touched the wood of Kev's door, he could the creak of the side door opening, a multitude of tiny paws and claws scattered across stone before manifesting themselves running off into the grass. his skull could not help but turn for a moment to watch them scatter their separate ways before resuming his vacant stare at the front door. It appeared someone wanted to make the best impression possible, only seconded by the mental complaints within Kev's abode as the last few stragglers were ushered out.

    Yes, certainly it would not kill them to go outside... Not when something else could cut their furry lives short. However, Mortis' interest was not in purging Kev's small, fluffy companions, even if one of them did have a certain tendency for stealing toes. Despite the commotion going on out back, his empty sockets rested adamantly upon the door, listening as there was some shuffling around echoing from within before it swung open and he was greeted with a familiar, green and scaly face. Apparently some of the shuffling inside was straightening up, with how neat his clothing was. Someone really wished to make a good impression with the sheep-skulled Judge today.

    "No, not too long." The ghoul slowly rasped in reply after looking over his clothes. As for Mortis, well, there was little that could be done to make his rotted form look all that neat and pristine. By living standards at least. The ghoul himself thought he looked very presentable, as his uniform was correct and to standard, fitting neither too snug nor too lose in his sense of judgement. Even the flies that hovered around his bony head were to code. At once he was invited inside, the smaller alien moving out of the way so he could walk in easier. Ducking his head down, he shambled on inside, his form still slumped slightly even within Kev's home due to the unaccommodating height of the ceiling.

    Alas, being a towering undead harbinger of doom was not the most glorious of existences, especially in a world that was not built for beings that were his or his brother's height. "I would not mind if we had tea firssst, Kev." He replied to the offer, making his way over to the couch and taking a seat. With his towering frame, as he leaned back, the Judge's form appeared to take up most of the seating space, long gangly legs splaying relaxedly to either side, while his tail curled around his hip bone to rest just beneath his thigh. given that the couch faced the kitchen rather directly, it would make for easier conversation than if he took one of the chairs which faced away from it.

    Speaking of which...

    "Ssshall we have the quessstionsss while the tea isss brewing or after?" Mortis asked, skeletal jaws flapping with every ethereal utterance. With how the Judge was, it was a wonder he even needed to move his mouth at all to speak.
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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Kev on Fri May 15, 2015 2:21 am

    Every last little creature was outside. The only ones still inside were the turtles, and the turtles were confined to their own little glass cage. Set to make his best impression after...well, earlier that morning, the alien opened the door and stared back at his visitor. Taut leather uniform, hands and feet that were green and decayed, and of course, a skull that resembled a sheep's. Behind Mortis, there was also a telltale trail of decayed plantlife. He had nearly forgotten about that part of Mortis' powers...but it was no issue. That just meant they were likely going to give the greenhouse a wide berth. Judge Mortis replied that he had not been waiting long, before he shuffled in the house, carrying flies and of course a certain smell. His nose wrinkled for but a moment, he was pretty used to this, thanks to Fear. Cuddling up to a corpse would do that to one's sense of smell.

    Kev shut the door behind Mortis, watching as the Judge slumped and made his way into the living room. At least Mortis wouldn't be entering the kitchen, he'd find it even more confined and stooped. "Alright. I have a proper tea cozy now, so we won't have a repeat of...that." Mortis sat himself down on the couch, taking up a good portion of it, mostly due to those long legs of his. That was fine though, there were two other chairs to sit in. Kev walked across the living room to enter into the kitchen and grab out supplies, primarily the tea tray, tea pot, tea kettle, tea cozy, and the tea cups. He pulled the tea kettle over to the sink and began to fill it up with water as Mortis spoke up from the living room. Kev glanced over his shoulder, considering the question. It shouldn't take too long to make the tea, and he could see Mortis easily from the kitchen.

    "We can have some questions while it's brewing." The faucet was turned off, Kev placing the kettle on the hob and turning it so that the water would begin boiling. The tea pot was placed on a hob that was further back on the stove, on a lower setting. Kev turned around to face Mortis, leaning onto the counter and giving it a good think. From here, he could see the stove and see Mortis all in one direction. Now for a question to start this off... "Fear said that he was raised in Law School to be a Judge, from a young age. Law School seemed difficult, from what I heard. He also has a hard time remembering other details about his life before being a Dark Judge. Do you have a hard time remembering your life as well? And were you raised in Law School from a young age too?"


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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Mortis on Sat May 16, 2015 1:17 am

    Thankfully, the ghoul's rotting aura was left outside when he had walked in. Not a single inch of Kev's wood floor was marred with blackened rot or writhing maggots, although the nature of his corpse was bound to leave some odd smudges in the shape of his leathery toes on sealed coating. Like his small, the Judge could not do much about it, but the flies...

    Snatch!

    With a swift snap of his arm, one of the buzzing annoyances was trapped in his rancid grip. The buzzing promptly ceased, when Mortis opened his hand next, the fly had disappeared, save for some dusty remains that clung to the palm. For a moment the Judge was idly fascinated with his work, already positioning his hand to catch another before he heard Kev speak up. Tea cozy...? Ah, yes, the prior visit. "Yesss, I am aware." He calmly hissed, hollow sockets focused upon the green alien. "Fear wasss the one who had gifted it to you during the holidaysss." A purple one, from what he recalled. Indeed, as Kev went to fetch the required materials for tea, a fluffy purple cozy was revealed. Kev, upon glancing over his shoulder at the ghoul, would find him staring right back, with one less fly hovering about his head then there was before...

    Snap!

    ...Make that two less.

    Another fly reduced to dust, there were only two more that circled about his rotted form, searching for a place to lay their eggs. Without having take his sights of off Kev, the superfiend lowered his arm back down to rest on a bony thigh, at least until he decided to catch another of the buzzing creatures. Ah, so Kev wished to ask questions while the tea was brewing. "Very well." He rasped, the dusty remains of the fly wiped off upon his pant leg while he waited to hear what the alien had to say.

    Of course, it was about what things were like when they were still alive. No, not a question about their duties or philosophy, something that could be easily remembered. He had to ask about the academy, about their childhood. Regardless, he had proposed that they talk while the tea was brewing, and therein allowed Kev to ask him questions. A stale, detached puff escaped his hollow chest as he leaned back and thought for a moment. "Of coursse." Mortis replied, a unimpressed sneer lacing his tone. "I am a Judge, am I not? The only Judgess who roam around without any law ssschool training are Jimpsss. My name isss not Jimp Mortisss by any meanss." How else would Mortis have become a Judge, Kev? Perhaps he thought there was an alternative to be visited by the Justice Fairy and bestowed a badge and lawful knowledge with a flick of a magical daystick. As for the question regarding his memory, the sheep skulled Judge tilted his jaw before replying. "I remember enough." He remembered his designation and purpose, their laws and the punishments for breaking them. He remembered the numerous souls he had put to rest and then some... He remembered the encompassing darkness and chill of death, the void which whispered to him the secrets of the dead and enlightened him in the ways of death and decay.

    He remembered...

    Or did he? It had been so long since he had been alive. So many he had judged and sentenced, how many of his memories were actually those he had read from others? Did it even matter anymore? Perhaps it did and perhaps it did not, but there were far more important things to focus on.

    Yet the images at the back of his memory still perplexed him, fuzzy landscapes and blurred faces. Voices that were so familiar and yet he could not pair them with a name or face. Some at least he could see something a little clearer, but not enough to make it out too fully.

    Mortis gave a small shake of his skeletal head. "I remember enough to do what we mussst." He repeated, a little more sternly than before.
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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Kev on Tue May 19, 2015 3:43 am

    A snapping noise, almost like the crack of a whip or clap of the hands sounded through the room, Kev turning on his heels to spy Mortis...apparently having caught something. Kev craned his head to get a look, but he couldn't tell from across the room. Much like Shally when she tried to catch something, Mortis' gaunt hand was poised to snatch something out of the air before his eye sockets turned to Kev. Ah, yes. Of course, he already knew about the tea cozy. "Yes, he was." Naturally he would know, being mentally bonded with Fear, and on a much deeper level. So...how many things did Mortis know about anyway? Particularly when it concerned Kev and Fear. Was Mortis lurking right there, watching everything? Particularly during...cuddles? A little unnerved by the idea, Kev focused on the tea for the moment. Though he still peeked over his shoulder back on Mortis as he prepared it, getting to watch Mortis in action this time as his long fingers snatched a fly right out of the air. "Nice catch." It really was quite a nice catch, methodical and calculating. Yet, it was a reminder that Kev needed to keep his impression good for this visit. If he made a mistake...if he said the wrong thing, then he'd be the fly getting snatched out of the air and wiped on Mortis' pants leg! For a moment, Kev watched Mortis silently, waiting to see if Mortis would snatch another fly, though it seems the Judge was content for now. The two buzzing bugs weren't bothering Kev any either. Though now Mortis' attention was all on Kev...

    And of course his answer was sarcastic. A bit of that Dark Judge wit and snark, that he had had a year to acclimate to. Yet, though he tried to expect it, the Judges still found a way to keep him on his toes. Mmm...best behavior, Kev. Don't want to be like those flies...Kev clasped his hands together calmly. "Ah, of course. I was just curious about the Law School, if they all take Judges in and raise them from a young age or if some may take cadets in as teenagers. But it seems that all Judges are raised from a young age. Thank you." So being a Judge really was all that they knew, and he even learned that Judges without Law School training were called Jimps. "Can Jimps do everything a Judge can? Or are they basically just citizens with a title?" Judges, cops, officers, lawyers, he had heard of all of those terms. But never a Jimp. Mortis replied that he remembered enough, and Kev inclined his head. After 300 years, they probably just held onto whatever they held as the most important details, which would be their teachings and their job. Everything and...everyone else, was collateral. Especially since they had outlived them all.

    Mortis seemed distracted for a moment, and Kev tilted his head in response. The Dark Judge must have been in deep thought...Judge Mortis shook himself out of it with a shake of the head, and he reiterated that he remembered enough to do what they had to. "Of course." Right, right...no more questions about remembering the past. It seemed to agitate Mortis. Kev was silent, contemplating other questions to ask. "You and Judge Fear are very close...you two seem to be closest with each other, too. Why is that, do you think?" Of course, given that the other brothers were a jerk who took his sweet time coming back for them, and a fiery hot-head who seemed like a big personality...yeah, Mortis and Fear were the best candidates for a stable partnership in that quartet.


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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Mortis on Wed May 20, 2015 5:56 am

    How many things did Mortis know? How many secrets, how many memories and lives had the Dark Judge seen pass before his empty eye sockets... Countless in their vast numbers, in order to know exactly what Kev wished to know, the only method was of course to ask.

    But would he be able to ask the right questions?

    In the meantime, the undead Judge took a moment to idly read over the alien's thoughts, finding their unnerved nature to be rather entertaining. Indeed, the Judge could be watching silently in the background, observing every private moment they held together. That is if Fear was not careful to cut off their link beforehand. Even so, if that was the case, the honorable Judge still would be able to puzzle out just what exactly was going on from the silence alone, especially after a few unexpected visits to the Sanctuary. The fact that it was Judge Fear and Kev's relationship however that made him grow tense was particularly intriguing. What was the alien afraid of him finding out, aside from their cuddling sessions? What made him squirm internally like the flies that he so effortlessly snatched out of the air before they were decayed to mere dust?

    "Yesss." Mortis agreed, his catch was on par to the point where the fly held hardly an idea of what hit it when his talons struck. His eye sockets still trained upon Kev, the two shared a small moment of watching each other before the alien realized he was content to leave the other two be for the moment. A quiet hiss slithered its way out from between his teeth as the alien's thoughts grew somewhat agitated.

    Almost as if the small sinner was not content with what he had heard in reply to his question. One could only wonder why...

    Regardless, his response above all was calm, if not out of fear of being turned to dust like those flies. While the ghoul knew exactly what he would do should Kev step out of line, he was content to keep that information hidden away. He did so like to see the alien keep on his toes after all. "Yesss, our training was required from a young age, nearly infantsss." If the Justice Department was able, he would not doubt they would have taken them from a younger age and raised them from day one out of the delivery room. Not that it would do any good, even when they had been taken in around five years of age there still were ones that came out crooked, plenty of them in fact back on Deadworld.

    Alas, such ruminations were once again interrupted by a green scaly sinner who could not help but be curious about everything. Thankfully the question was not centered on himself this time. "I would no sssooner call a Jimp a real Judge as you would call your kettle a teapot." And yet, at one point Kev did. Thus, with a shake of his bony head, Mortis went on to educate his diminutive host. "A Jimp is an impossster, sssomeone who makesss their own knockoff mockery of the uniform and walksss around asss if they are the real thing. They certainly act like they can do everything a Judge can, but they neither know what they are actually doing, nor do they care. A Jimp merely likesss the feeling of being able to pussh an ignorant mind around, that feeling of having control and power like a Judge carriesss." As Kev could imagine, it tends to make things rather muddled if a citizen would be approached and ordered about by a Jimp.

    With that thought, Snap! went his hand and another fly was removed from the world.

    His gaze for once left Kev's bluish black eyes to regard the dusty smudge that remained on the palm of his hand upon opening it again. Thankfully the alien was not so inclined to keep prying into what exactly he could remember regarding the past, regarding his living past. Instead he decided to ask yet another obvious question, and like all obvious questions...

    "We are clossse becaussse we are brothersss in undeath. All of usss are clossse." He hissed, none too impressed with Kev's question this time either. Currently content with only one fly buzzing around his skull attempting to lay an egg in his rotted hide, the Dark Judge leaned back into the cushions, empty eye sockets once again focused upon him. "We are all equally clossse to each other, none isss more important than the other." He reiterated, wishing to make that perfectly clear. The last thing he needed was for the green alien to think that there was bias out in the field merely because they decided to throw some quips around regarding the other two.

    Even when they were apart, Judge Mortis preferred to think they still thought of each other as a unit, a single whole that could be separated but never truly divided. All the same, the undead's skull tilted as he pondered Kev's question, his jaw shifting from side to side thoughtfully before his graveled tone filled the quiet once again. "Why isss it that you asssk, Kev?" Certainly he could read the alien's thoughts crystal clear, but he could not help but ponder if he thought up his inquiry for other reasons.
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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Kev on Thu May 21, 2015 4:57 am

    Nearly infants, eh? "My people were similar. We were hatched and raised in a nursery where we were taught everything that we needed to know. Culture, language, ways to identify dangerous plantlife, easy ways to avoid predators, how to build a flat in the tree branches...certainly nothing like the Law that you had to be taught, though. It wasn't as difficult, either..." Judge Fear could have been exaggerating, but...mm, he doubted it. Everything he had learned about how cadets were and what cadets had to do...the way Law School was like a 'dog eat dog' environment, it seemed daunting. To be raised from infancy in that environment...no wonder the Judges were the way they were.

    However, this...'Jimp' was unlike anything Kev had been imagining it to be. The alien tilted his head to the side as Judge Mortis explained. At first, Kev had thought that maybe a Jimp was just someone with an excessive title that was within the field of Law. Like someone who called themselves a King without any land to rule over as King. A useless title, from the way Judge Mortis had spoken of it. However...a Jimp was in fact an impostor. Much more like someone who dressed up in a police uniform and walked around the city, taking advantage of treatment he would receive from dressing like a police officer. Without real knowledge of the law or any idea how to even pretend to be a Judge, a Jimp did whatever he wished and relished the power and control he had over people. "These...Jimps, sound positively horrible. I suppose the penalty for impersonating a Judge is death." Thankfully, the ISOs were not so easy to impersonate. These Jimps sounded dangerous...more so then the Judges themselves, even.

    Another swift Snap!, another little fly life snuffed from existence. How many did that leave, did Mortis get them all? Kev squinted to see across the room, and could barely make out a little shape buzzing around Mortis. Ah, one more. Mortis seemed to be looking into his own hand, to gaze at the fly's dead body. Oblivious to the dusty nature of the dead fly, Kev imagined it instead to be a carcass with oozing green blood, perhaps some other weeping fluids from the rot. "Would you like a napkin?" Wouldn't want to get any of that in his tea, right? Then again...the Judges couldn't taste. Maybe he wouldn't mind. As for the question, Mortis insisted that they were close because they were brothers in undeath, and that they had no favorites between their brothers. Without the other brothers here, Kev could not compare how they treated each other, so maybe the brothers were equally close after all. Though he had been hoping to hear more...how they all had met. What drew them to each other. Why they followed Judge Death. Perhaps these details were simply lost to the sands of time. Though Mortis was obviously not pleased with that question, he did not seem inherently hostile either, so Kev nodded his head to the Judge. "I see. That is good, to keep them all important." Favoritism scarcely ended well.

    The tea kettle whistled loudly, the alien turning around to pull the kettle off of the hot burner. One hand turned the knob to turn it off, along with the other burner that was keeping the tea pot warm. The tea pot and tea kettle were moved to the counter, and Kev grabbed a container of black tea and scooped three scoops of the tea leaves into the pot. The only sound was the pouring of water and the clicks of Mortis' jaw shifting before the Judge spoke up, curious about why Kev wanted to know such details. Why did the alien want to know about the bond between Judge Fear and Judge Mortis? Kev pondered the question as he placed the top on his pot and slipped the tea cozy over it. The tea now steeping, Kev turned around to face Judge Mortis once more. "I was just curious. You two have a bond, and...it is one that I honestly could not understand on my own. I've never known someone as long as you two have known each other. You are brothers, true brothers." Much like how Skyler and Livewire were true sisters. Though not genetically related, there was a bond and it was a bond he had not truly known. The alien was silent, almost contemplative before he spoke again. "I'm sorry about what happened last night. I don't want to seem like I'm trying to come between you and Fear. He has a deep bond with you. It...isn't my place to get between that."


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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Mortis on Fri May 22, 2015 3:16 am

    A nursery?

    While Kev explained, the Dark Judge could not help but find it appalling that the alien would even think to compare this treetop youth camp to their Law Academy. They were far from similar, in fact Mortis found it all to be "Primitive." Came his graveled reply, not all too impressed with the alien's native methods of education. "I would not call a treefort sssurvival camp sssimilar to our Law Academy. What bringsss you to thisss particular path of logic?" Or perhaps a lack of logic. Mortis' hissing statement, or more challenge, was accompanied by a creaking of aged leather as he leaned forward. Yellowed talons curled against his knee pads and his skull tilted with a crackle of aged joints and withering skin. Go on Kev, do explain how these two completely different methods were similar.

    Thankfully his understanding of a Jimp was far better. A low hiss pushed itself between his teeth, nodding in agreement with the alien's observation. "To a citizen, yesss. To usss, they are more nuisssancesss and an insssult to the uniform." He rasped offhandedly. At Kev's guess for the penalty, Mortis straightened some, rolling his shoulder with another dry crackle. "Yesss." The Dark Judge affirmed, his tone sounded a bit more pleased on that note. Although Kev should not be fooled, there was nothing more dangerous than irritating the real thing. Undoubtedly the alien was already well aware of this from having witnessed the Dark Judge's abilities during that one eve with Daemeon, and now the flies.

    After having snagged the third fly that had been buzzing around his head, while he had been interested in the remains that were smeared across his palm, his gaze had lifted to look at Kev once more as he was offered a napkin. While polite, it was unnecessary, "No thank you, Kev." He hissed, wiping the dust remains upon the thigh of his leathers. "My touch would rot the napkin jussst asss I rotted thisss fly, you sssee." Much like his profession, his powers did not discriminate. Now then, what was this about his closeness to his brother? Apparently dear Kev was not all that enthused with the answer he had given, despite how he had asked a very vague question. It was only fair he received an equally vague answer!

    With a shrill whistle from the kettle, it seemed the water for their tea was ready. He observed quietly as Kev went to the stove and turned off the burner, moving the kettle off the stove and readied the pot for brewing. Hm, looked as if he kept the loose leaf that fear had given him all those months ago. As he poured the water in and left it to steep. With that done, it was time to get to the bottom of his question. As expected, the Judge heard nothing but envy.

    Envy of a relationship he had never once even began to grasp. A gurgling, thoughtful hum emanated from his hollow ribs as he pondered the statement, the both of them silent for the time being before Kev's thoughts interrupted. This time, it was an apology, oddly enough, and for getting in the way of Fear and Mortis's relationship. For a moment, Mortis' jaw shifted to the side before realigning, giving the green alien a long stare before a loud laugh barked from his empty head, his jaw opening wide enough with the expression that it looked to be dislocated. "HA! You think your cuddling sssesssionsss with Fear are getting in the way of our bond?!" The ghoul paused for a moment, as if to think over what Kev had said once again, an ethereal cackle filled the room shortly after as testaments to his judgement on the matter. "I hold no jealousssy towardss my brothersss and their interessstsss. Ssso long asss thisss little arrangement," He gestured with a gnarled claw to Kev, "Doesss not get in the way of hisss dutiess, I hold no care for it one way or the other. Either way, he hasss made it clear you will be sssentenced once thisss fassscination hasss ceassed." He finished, still finding amusement in the whole idea. Him, a sinner, getting between two eternal undead Judges to the point of threatening to sever their bond... There was not a joke he had heard to be funnier.

    He chuckled at it once again before settling back into the couch cushions, his claws resting upon his knee pads. Admittedly, Kev's declaration and his apology brought up a question of his own. So, if Kev had never experienced the kind of bond that Fear, Mortis and their brothers held, and he was worried in getting in the way of the two... "Isss thisss why you have grown ssso clossse to Fear, to try and tassste what it isss like? And now that you have ssspent a trivial amount of time with him, you think your relationssship to be enough to threaten our bond." Mortis shook his head, finding the alien's statement to be rather, well, dumb if not arrogant. It took centuries, not months, to get to where they were. Centuries of work, of tolerance, of trials and hurdles they all had to face.

    Thirteen weeks of bootcamp, a spot of afternoon tea, and cuddling in the Sanctuary could not hold a candle to it.
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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Kev on Fri May 22, 2015 5:18 am

    Primitive. The Dark Judges really did not think much of his people, though few seldom did. Kev could admit that his people were dumb, their Xenophobia was baseless, and he wouldn't want to return to his home world. The comparisons to tribes, cutting chicken heads in a dirt hut, were something he could very much live without. Even moreso, the Judge apparently found his comparison laughable, wondering how Kev could even think that and leaning forward, as though interested to hear the answer. "You're right. No one ever died in our nursery, unless the egg was damaged or some other random occurrence. In Law School, failure was the same as death. I find them similar though, because Law School and the nurseries of my world both took people from a young age, raised them away from their parents and instilled their own values, ideas and lessons into them. Different values, ideas, and lessons but it is still all we know after growing up with only that. Everybody else had their living space and their space for education as something separate. They were raised by their parents. We were not." He thought it was a fair comparison. Judge Mortis was allowed to disagree, however.

    Jimps were horrible to citizens, though for a Judge they were an annoying gnat. An imbecile, prancing about as something they didn't earn. Judge Mortis affirmed that they would have killed any Jimps they saw, and it was probably easy enough to catch a Jimp. They didn't seem like the smartest people around... "For the best, I'm sure." It wasn't like the Jimps were doing anything good for their community. Mortis wiped his hand on his leg, the leathers functioning as his napkin, and Kev tilted his head to the side. "Your powers can affect napkins too?" Well, there was a subject to ask more questions about! Kev already knew quite a bit about Fear's power...maybe he could learn more about Mortis'. The tea was actually some he'd gotten himself, though he also had tea from Livewire and Sonia. Those teas were more flavorful though, and his experiences with Fear seemed to point to the Judges preferring the dark stuff. No flowery teas or minty flavors for hardcore Judges.

    Mortis seemed to make an odd gurgling noise, the alien blinking at the noise and almost wincing at the noise. Was something skittering in there? Was he...hungry? The Dark Judge fixed a long stare, one that made him uncomfortable and when he suddenly barked a laugh, it made him jolt. One hand grasped his counter, staring at Mortis as he laughed. Well...that made his theory that Mortis may have felt left out pretty much null. "I don't think I am, no, but I wanted to make sure you didn't think I was." In the process of his laughing and explaining, Mortis answered another question Kev had been curious about. He apparently held no real feelings for Kev and Fear. He neither hated their relationship nor adored it. It was just something Fear was doing, and he wasn't jealous of it. It brought Kev some comfort, though it didn't quite last.

    Judge Mortis wrote:"Either way, he hasss made it clear you will be sssentenced once thisss fassscination hasss ceassed."

    "Fascination?" Was that all he considered them to be? Some curiosity that Fear could entertain before killing him and doing away with him? "I am not a fascination. And I'm counting on him sentencing me at the end of all of this." Dying at Fear's hands did not bother him, but the idea that Fear could really just see Kev as some...insignificant thing that was mildly interesting...something to toy with until he got bored...the very idea made him puff up. He stood on the tips of his toes, making himself look bigger then he really was. Fear had to think of him as more then a banal fascination. While the words had definitely rubbed Kev the wrong way, Judge Mortis was amused, if not annoyed with such an idea. Certainly not upset, which was for the best. And yet the fact that he could say such things as if they were simple fact...

    Mortis then asked his own question, wondering if Kev had gotten close to Fear in order to obtain what he had never had. The alien shook his head vehemently. "No. At least, I certainly didn't intend to get close to him because of that. I had my own bonds in the past, but they aren't anything like this with Fear, and perhaps the loss of those bonds made me linger near a strong psychic like him. But I did not intend to get close to him just to get a taste of something like this. It is a privilege to have this kind of relationship with him. I never expected us to get this close." He never expected Fear to reciprocate. Mortis' deeming their time together as trivial was like a knife to his chest, the time they had had become so significant to him. For Kev, it certainly wasn't trivial. "Again, I did not think that it was enough to threaten your bond. Of course it isn't. But I was trying to be sensitive to how you may perceive it. You seemed to feel like a third wheel when you walked in on us cuddling. You are first. You, your brothers, the Law." No matter how Kev felt for the Judge, he was still alive, and that alone put him several notches lower on Fear's list of concerns.


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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Mortis on Sat May 23, 2015 4:14 am

    Well, the Judge certainly was not going to call the tree nursery advanced by any means. With the prompting of Mortis' challenge however, Kev appeared to relent in his attempt to compare the two, at least until he finally came to a single place where they could be considered similar. Ah, of course, the one area that they were both the same was that they were both taken from their homes to be taught a specific way of life. As Mortis was allowed to disagree, he took the opportunity to do so. "That isss ssstill but one sssmall and insssignificant facet of a greater picture." Mortis replied, finding Kev's answer rather lacking. "The number of differencesss in your argument greatly outweigh the amount of similarities. If you go by that argument, your people could be sssimilar to a military regime, a cult, or even a orphanage. What similarity you have put forth isss only one that isss a very broad term." Therein, it was only about as similar as comparing a lizard to a plant in that they were both green or stating a Judge and Jimp to be similar in that they wore the same uniform.

    In that case, for the best indeed. Though the Dark Judge had to admit, for as long as he had walked around the city, he had not seen a single jimp that attempted to copy the uniform of the ISO's. Then again, the Judge had never seen any ISO's around to know what they looked like. For the best, should the arrive, likely it was the same reason a Judge would approach a citizen. Only for the best intentions under their laws, equating to being arrested and locked away in a prison.  as he heard Kev's next curious inquiry, Mortis' first reaction was a flat, albeit puzzled "What?" What sort of sarcastic quip was this? Of course his powers could-! Oh, that's right, this sinner did not have a single clue about his capabilities...

    The undead Judge gave a rasping cough, an imitation of clearing his throat. "...I mean, yesss. Of courssse my touch can affect the napkin. I can russst through sssteel beams, disssintegrate even the thickessst of plassssteel." Given enough time, that is. However, that was enough of Mortis' time to pridefully boast of his abilities, for apparently Kev's jimmies were starting to get a little rustled. Mighty rustled in fact, once he had calmed down from being startled by the Judge's amusement, the alien apparently had decided he was far better than mere fascination.

    He stood on his toes, he puffed out his chest, his tone turned downright venomous!

    And here the Judge thought he could not get any more entertaining. Even Fear had never seen this particularly feisty side of his little companion. To top it off, the green sinner went ahead and declared he found it to be a privilege that his brother had returned the same amount of interest that he had shown him initially. Throughout it all, he remained silent, his skeletal grin may as well be acting as a mirror to his amusement at the whole display. Although, as Kev fell silent, he too remained silent for a few moments before he decided it fitting to speak. "That isss the thing, Kev. We are eternal, we do not feel, we do not sense as you do, we do not think as you do. What isss one grain of sssand among a desssert? What isss one sssinner among billionsss we have purged? My brother enjoysss your presssence, yesss, but in the end, he came to you becaussse your sssuffering proved interesssting enough to sssavor." He hissed, sadistic pleasure thick in his voice. "Once you have been sssentenced asss you are ssso counting on, he ssshall move on to the next sssinner that happensss to catch hisss interessst, and the next after that, and the next after that." Mortis rasped, leaning back in his seat, claws curling with a creak of ancient, leathery skin.

    As for worrying about getting in the way, about Mortis acting as a third wheel? The undead Judge gave another chilling laugh. "Perisssh the thought. Ssshould I wisssh to experience the sssame thing, I could find my own idle fasscination to entertain me." Otherwise, the Judge was fairly confident in his place as first and foremost just under their duties. That said, Mortis tilted his bony snout towards the kitchen counter.

    Hmm, how was that tea coming along?
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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Kev on Sat May 23, 2015 7:01 am

    Like a true Judge, or perhaps a lawyer, Judge Mortis took Kev's argument and dissected it in his disagreement. What Kev considered a good comparison, something that made the backbone of their respective systems, Mortis saw as small and insignificant. The differences were just too striking for Judge Mortis to see any comparisons between their culture. "I do believe my people to have been similar to a cult." Their entire planet was isolated, and almost every other species was considered dangerous. Kev never learned anything else until he had come to the Breach. It was pretty cult-like. "Alright." Mortis was free to disagree, and Kev was free to think that it was still a significant similarity. There was no use arguing for Mortis to accept it, it wasn't important and Judge Mortis wasn't going to admit that Law School could have any similarities to Kev's nurseries. Maybe that was fair. The nurseries on Kev's world didn't exactly prepare him for the world or anything...not this world at least.

    Kev blinked back at Mortis, confused. What, what? The two stared at each other in confusion before Mortis realized that Kev didn't know much about his powers, and explained himself. "So your touch doesn't just affect organics...that's interesting!" Really interesting, actually. All this time, he figured that Mortis could only rot that which was alive. But he could erode metals, rust them easily. All materials could melt under Mortis' touch, either rotting it or merely disintegrating it. "Impressive, too." He said with a thoughtful hum. Mortis could kill by touch, Fear by sight. Fire...well he could set everything on fire, and Death could slip his hand into someone's chest to give them a heart attack. The Judges were quite varied in their powers, and perhaps equally strong.

    However, them jimmies were soon rustled, and Kev spoke sternly, taking issue with what Mortis was saying. The Dark Judge in question was merely watching the alien, seeming quite amused with the show. Kev's feet flattened on the wood, no longer on his tiptoes, and he stared back at the Judge intently. None of this was making Judge Mortis angry. And that was good, really good for this visit. But the way Mortis was looking at him now...he almost preferred anger. It was an almost predatory amusement. Like some wise adult watching a child throw an amusing temper tantrum. When Mortis spoke again, it just sent all the wrong shivers down his spine as the Judge spoke, seeming to take pleasure in this topic. Kev was highly aware that the Judges were almost on another wave length. It was like the two of them walked in a different plane of existence, which they very well might have. Sometimes, trying to understand the Judges and how they worked was like trying to understand the work of the Gods themselves. They were 'other', they were different, they saw things differently, they had been dead for hundreds of years. Kev's stare was unrelenting.

    "I know that. I know that he came to me at first, because he could see how much I was suffering. He thought he could use me for his own needs, and I was willing to go along with it so I could get what I wanted. He wanted Daemeon dead, I wanted Ridley dead. It was fair. I understand this, and we would have never grown close if we hadn't started off like that. If he hadn't taken an interest in my suffering." Perhaps in the beginning, Kev was merely fascinating, and it'd be fair because Kev found Fear fascinating. But what they had now was more then curiosity and fascination. Kev's fingers clenched tightly, as Mortis insisted that once Kev was dead, Fear would just find a new sinner that fascinated him, moving on and on from sinner to sinner. The idea of being so easily replaced struck a chord, but the alien's gaze turned cool as his demeanor relaxed considerably. Considering that very idea...Fear moving from sinner to sinner that caught his attention...it didn't sound like Fear.

    "That sounds like a vicious, unproductive cycle...and Fear isn't very fond of those." He responded coolly, eyes still set on the eye sockets of Mortis. "But, if he did decide to move on to another sinner after me...I wouldn't mind. If it means he'd have company for himself after I'm dead and gone, he is welcome to find a sinner who fascinates him." But Kev was confident that Fear would never try to replace the alien, even if he really did find a new sinner that interested him. Just as how Kev would never try to replace Fear, if anything happened to him. Mortis laughed again, waving off any concerns about Mortis feeling left out. Along with Mortis' bond with Fear being too strong for Kev to get in the way, he also insisted that if he felt left out, he could just find his own sinner to be fascinated with. "I understand. I'm glad you don't feel left out, then." It really was a relief, that Mortis didn't feel like Kev was a threat. The way Mortis saw him as being something so insignificant though...that was something else entirely.

    Mortis' snout soon turned to the counter though, where the tea pot was resting to allow the tea to seep. Kev followed his gaze and stepped closer to the tea pot. Hmm...throughout all of that, surely enough time had passed to allow the water and leaves to mix into a fresh pot of tea. Just in case though, Kev peeled the cozy back and lifted the top off to peer inside. Dark brown inside. "The tea is ready." Kev tugged the cozy back on, to keep it warm, and placed the pot on the tray. The tea cups had already been placed on the tea tray, though he grabbed out another bottle of honey, this one shaped like a bee hive, along with a small dish of sugar that came with a spoon. He grabbed the tray and held it steadily as he set it on the coffee table. He poured a cuppa for his guest first, and then himself. A quick squirt of honey and he was content with his tea for now. The alien grabbed up a spoon and stirred his tea, spoon making a soft clinking noise as it tapped the edges of his cup. All the while, Kev kept his gaze neutral and his body language calm. He did not want to get angry again, no matter what Mortis said. This was a visit, a friendly one, and they were trying to get to know each other. He'd already nibbled the bait, he wasn't going to get reeled in.


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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Mortis on Wed May 27, 2015 1:43 am

    Alas, the details that Kev saw as important were indeed insignificant, even if it were not from a lawful standpoint. to compare Kev's people to a cult however... The Judge was quick to shake his head at that opinion. "Cultsss are more focussed around obssscure deitiesss and entitiesss." He corrected. The ghoul should know after all, he and his brothers had been worshiped by a Death Cult for a long while during their stay in Mega City One. "What you dessscribe isss common in tribal sssettingsss. Ussually taking the men away from their parentsss at a young age to teach them how to hunt and fend for themssselvesss, acting asss a guard for the tribe, huntersss, and leadersss." The ghoul elaborated. Kev's experience with Portal Breach compared to his home world could be considered nothing more than culture shock. His training did not prepare him for this world, but upon his own planet, likely it would be all that they needed to survive.

    To each their own, he decided. Kev was not making any attempts to press the issue further, and in the process, was not making any attempts to compare Deadworld's Law Academy to a treefort camp.

    Instead, the alien took a mild interest in his abilities. He supposed he could take this with more tolerance, so long as Kev was wise to not skimp out on the praise. "Yesss, it isss." The Judge agreed, something of a smile lacing his tone. "If given enough time, I could likely rot the entirety of Portal City to the ground." He mused, partially to himself and partially to Kev. As for Mortis' greatest interests... He happened to find something worthwhile in what Kev was doing.

    Uneasiness spread over Kev's mind the longer their gazes remained locked on each other, the alien's posture starting to relax and become more controlled as he found his guest was not so easily angered. Would you rather face the wrath of an indignant Dark Judge? To have Fear swoop in as swiftly as he could and stop things before they got too far out of hand and someone nearly lost their life? Alas, it appeared not as the alien continued to remain level headed in his response to Mortis' well placed jabs. Instead of ignorance however, what came from him this time was an understanding. He knew what he was getting into with his brother along with the repurcussions, and yet he wished to remain despite the unease. He was well aware that this whole fiasco started with Ridley and an interest in using their gullible green accomplice to gather some weapons of mass destruction, and through that they needed to get on his 'good side' as it was called.

    Although he commended Fear with how close he managed to get to the alien and earn his trust for their purposes, he could not help but wonder if the alien had grown too close. Thus, as Kev went on ahead and stated that he knew Fear well enough to know he would not go through vicious cycles of taking on new interests and abandoning them, Mortis rolled his shoulders and tilted his skull to be more level with Kev's gaze. "Of coursse he would not go through sssuch viciousss cycless, Kev. Do you not believe I would know him besst asss hisss brother?" He gravelled, a sneer curling its way into his words. "I would have thought after thirteen weeksss of training, you would know a tessst when you heard one." His intent finally realized, the undead Judge gave another hoarse chuckle before falling silent.

    The padded cloth beneath him hissed as his tail curled slightly next to his leg, empty eye sockets remaining fixed upon Kev. How well did he do? What was the verdict on the results of the Dark Judge's little test? That would be for the Judge to know, and for Kev to find out in due time. In the meantime, there was tea to serve. As Kev prepared the tea tray for the both of them, Mortis could not help but slightly tilt his snout upward, as if he were detecting a rather pleasant scent. While he could not rightfully make out a scent as he would have when he used to be living, Mortis held enough memories to remember. Granted, most of the scent was from biscuits that were not present on the tray, but it was enough for him to indulge for a short moment.

    When Kev turned to bring the tea to the coffee table, he would find the undead Judge retaining his empty stare. Sugar and honey came with the pot and cups, which were set on the table before he poured a cup for Mortis and then for himself. "Thank you." He hissed, taking his cup to his teeth and tipping the contents into his jaws.

    Any and all control Kev was exerting to keep himself in line seemingly went unnoticed by his guest, who was enjoying his first few sips.
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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Kev on Thu May 28, 2015 1:56 pm

    Obscure deities and entities...? That made the alien give a thoughtful hum. Seemed he'd been using the word wrong this whole time...he'd usually used it to just describe a group of allied people who were close-minded and bigoted. Seems cult were a lot more specific then he had realized. Mortis described how Kev's own people raised their spawn apart as being typical of tribes, though the description still made him uncomfortable. Apt though it may be...if it weren't for the bombing of his planet's surface, they'd surely be further along. Or, well...would have been further along. "Our 'guards' were female." Though they weren't called guards. "In a few cases, they were even an Elder's own bonded." If there was anything more dangerous then a Kryptonistanian female, it was a Kryptonistanian who was in love.

    The slight topic change to Mortis' powers seemed to brighten the Judge's mood, his tone quite light and pleased as he explained the extent of his powers. "No wonder you and your brothers were able to create a Dead World." The entire city, rotted to the ground and reduced to rubble. It almost drew a shiver, just to think of it. Indeed, the Dark Judges were quite strong. Every single one of them. "Were it not for the ISOs, I'd imagine the city would be helpless under that kind of power." Even more reason to keep on Mortis' good side.

    As Kev's anger began to settle and disperse, their gazes remained settled upon the other. The alien had to admit, Mortis knew exactly which buttons to push to really get him riled up. He hadn't given into the button smashing entirely however, and the more quiet it was between the two of them, the calmer he became. Though, Mortis was far from happy. He took Kev's retort as a jab that he didn't know his brother. The alien's eyes narrowed, leaning forward slightly as he began to reply before Mortis continued.

    Judge Mortis wrote:"I would have thought after thirteen weeksss of training, you would know a tessst when you heard one."

    "A test?" That bait, those cutting remarks, were a test? Kev blinked, utterly gobsmacked. "I know a test when I hear one, but I did not expect any...tests...this evening. I'm also more used to doubts, arguments and debates over a remark that is testing someone." Kev had been present for enough arguments in this world to at first think that any critical remark or negative remark in general was simply an argument. Arguments over people's merit and morals, their choices, their relationships...though the place had settled for the most part, he still remembered them. Though, with some thought he could think of a couple of instance where someone had said something that could be seen as a test. Perhaps they really believed in their words, and perhaps not, but the words were said with a purpose in mind. A purpose that usually involved measuring how the other reacted. And if this was a test...

    "Mmm..." The alien was quiet, focusing his attention on getting the tea ready. Mortis wanted to see how Kev would react, giving a few well placed jabs and prods. Likely, it was to see how the alien did under pressure, especially when faced with doubt regarding himself and Fear. Would Kev allow the doubt to overpower him, causing him to collapse into a sobbing mess on the carpet? Perhaps once, but not now. Though getting snappy wasn't the best reaction either... Kev chewed the situation in his mind, thoughts brewing as he served the tea and evaluated his own reactions. At least Mortis seemed pleased to get his tea, sniffing the air and thanking him as he poured a cup. Kev inclined his head in return. "You're welcome." The scaly alien leaned back into his seat, spoon now set aside and both hands cradling the cup close. It was too hot to drink, but he could at least savor some of the warmth while he waited for it to cool. He stared across at Mortis, fingers rubbing against his cup gently before he spoke.

    "I'm sorry I yelled at you during your...test. That wasn't very professional of me."


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    Re: In the Shadow of Trepidation...

    Post by Mortis on Wed Jun 03, 2015 5:17 am

    Ah, so Kev's people did not tend to stick to the usual method of having the men do all the fighting and work. Likely a good thing given how the alien who was standing in the kitchen looked... less than capable. Even with his more toned form, thanks to his brother's coaching, little green Kev did not look like he could stand up to all that much. Could he break through a wall if needed? Could he toss aside a boulder as if it were a mere pebble? His eye sockets, albeit empty, roamed over him in scrutiny. Certainly, he fit what they required for their plans, but otherwise there was little threat to be found from him, to anyone immortal or mortal.

    And if this was what he could presume to be the peak of their people's physical ability... "How were the femaless different from the maless?" He hissed, curious. Certainly Kev had insinuated that they were more adept physically for the job, but by how much? Were they the same size as Kev? All of course were trivial in the end, as death claimed all no matter their strength or devotion to who or what they desired. Nothing more than a topic to pass the time while the tea brewed, he supposed. That, and a means to get to know this Kev better, at least on his own terms. For a moment Mortis pondered how easily he could just wrench open that little mind of his and take all that he wished to know... At least, if Fear did not object to it first. However, there was also a matter of a statement he made earlier on in the Sanctuary.

    This all was to make things more smooth between Kev and himself, to allow their plans to be carried out easier. Forcing information was not the best method, nor was this test. As much as he enjoyed how the alien had jumped and snapped at the bait earlier, showing such devotion to his brother, he would need to ease up. For the sake of keeping all of this from becoming more tumultuous.

    Yesss, all would be rather helplesss to our purge." He uttered distantly, continuing to brood for a few moments more before he returned his full attention back upon the alien. "I have heard that thessse ISO'sss are not all knowing. What elssse isss known about them?" He asked, the ghoul's curiosity sounding more genuine than amused.

    Although as Kev thought to reply before he got his full thought out in the open, Judge Mortis could not help but find entertainment in the alien's nuances. The squint of his eyes, how he looked as he was taken aback by the "true intent" of his sadistic interrogation. "I don't believe I sstuttered." Mortis hissed calmly as Kev went on to repeat his words. "Of courssse you would not have expected it, I am Mortisss, brother of Fear. It would not be sssurprisssing if sssome nuancesss carried over from your time ssspent with him." He reasoned with an idle roll of his wrist. "However, we both know I am not him, and he isss not me." Any who thought otherwise was making a very crucial mistake.

    Sssip.

    Whether or not any more mistakes would be made had yet to be seen. The undead Judge gladly took another sip while he let Kev sit and think over this new information, patiently waiting to see the outcome of attempting to puzzle out a single piece of an eternal enigma. Setting the cup down on the saucer once more, his bony eye sockets came to rest on the alien once again. Ah, so he wished to give an apology...

    "There isss no need." He idly rasped, "I merely find it to be an interesting way to get to know someone better." Speaking of which... There was a matter that piqued the ghoul's curiosity greatly. "You and Fear tend to enjoy each others company, a very... intimate company. If we cannot rightfully feel your presssence save for our sssupernatural ability, what isss it that you gain from it in return?" Mortis asked, bringing his hands together to tap the tips of his claws against each other.

    What did Kev get out of cuddling with a corpse?

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