We’d been told we had a week and I took that time to finally tell my family the truth about me…and my powers. Bryce, understandably was happy to finally say that he knew all along and mom was less than pleased, muttering about how her daughter was the one on the news in flimsy clothing. I finally talked to dad about the truths I’d discovered while in Asgard – it was a hard thing to swallow, to know that an ancestor was, in fact, a valkyrie. Or that I was engaged to a Norse god. Yes, that went over well.
Before the week was up Barbaracalled us in and we had to leave – now. Something’s happening and we needed to get started. Vance’shalf brother, David, handed us our watches, reminding us of the option to either synch partially or go for the full effect. Kirtcouldn’t stop muttering something about leaping and sliding. Then we pow-wowed for a moment – Ericcame up with the plan for everyone to meet at the city center of the alternate-dimension version of Freedom City for a week at mid-day until everyone who could was there. Alex brought up the point that if we die in this alternate dimension that one of the others hit the ‘return’ button on the watch and send the deceased home – the watches are only perceptible to us. He also recommended that he and Eric synch fully instead of me or Kirt, which makes sense.
Then we wave ‘bye’ to Vance, since he’s sticking behind to lead the new team and enter what I consider one of the worst ideas ever – a white sphere that has a hatch that’s to be our ride to the ‘other side’. The door closes and it’s pitch black and the stupid watch starts to hum and vibrate, the only sensation in this hell hole. I’m not claustrophobic, but this is testing even my courage. Then there’s a pinprick of light, followed by a sea of stars…then candlelight?
Oh crap. I’m on the other side, for good or bad. Looking around, I see a low couch, flowing draperies, a fresco on one wall. Candles are everywhere and a woman is asking me a question about…wine? For Kalends? I err on the side of caution and go with the white. I’m wearing an elaborate gown that looks like something I saw once at an exhibit for Ancient Rome at the Freedom City museum. Glancing around, I see more people that are dressed plainer than I am and it seems that everyone around me is treating me with some sort of deference. It seems they’re all servants and I’m a lady? Great. Looking around some more, I note that while most of the lighting is candle or firelight, there seems to be an artificial light source in the main room of what I can discern is a actual Roman villa.
The woman who’d been speaking to me is looking a me oddly but I demur and ask about the area, which earns me an even odder look, but then she asks if I have business in the city. I grab onto that excuse and a carriage is ordered for me, which I take into the city, Libertas. It seems I’m in this world’s version of Freedom City, which I take as a sign. It’s a lengthy journey and I’m so very tempted to just up and fly, but that would be tipping our hand a bit too soon.
I take it as another sign that I spy Eric and …Vance? What the heck? I get over my shock after we meet and start talking. Something, perhaps my partial synch with ‘Kenandia’ my counterpart here, that it’s acceptable that I’m seen with Eric, as he’s from a powerful family. Seems Vance has no idea how he got here either, being in the other room, but he’s here now. Looking around the city center we see what we ‘know’ is the Senate building, complete with guards. Approaching, we’re halted but I send in a message for my father – who is, you guess it – a senator. The reply is terse and he’ll make time to meet with me tomorrow during Kalends. I recall seeing the guest list and Eric’s family was listed, of course. But that’ll make it easier, perhaps.
We leave the building and wander around a few moments, noting ornate ironwork, wondrous fountains that are run by powerful pumps and more of those light sources that produce no heat. We also cross paths with Babarous Kanus…she looks tough and no-nonsense, much like our own. Eric ducks behind a wall to do some reconnaissance into the atmosphere, as we note one thing – there’s no sign of the damage and destruction that Gravitas had told us was happening on this world, which is why they invaded. He returns stating that while the world is a Ceasar’s dream come true, there’s no sign of any devastation.
After wandering around a few more minutes we start to encounter the poorer areas of the city, where starvation and worse are prevalent. I feel awful, seeing that my family is evidently wealthy and could help. When we start getting a few hard stares at the state of our clothing, we flee decorously, soon running across an empty building that a local identifies as an arena of law. I’m furious that such a place is empty! Turns out the emperor makes all the laws and the governor’s enforce then and there’s no place for the common man to make his plea.
Eric spies a library and we do some research – turns out the emperor ‘_descended from the heavens and brought forth a golden age_’ before he started taking over the world, literally. He doesn’t have a name but has the power of the gods, as he killed them all. After that sobering news we agree to meet again the next day and we go our separate ways.
After a not-so-restful night, I wake up again to more clothing and wig choices. I settle on the red one as it’s what I’m used to. After the maid leaves I experiment with hovering and I can still do that. The maid was asking about why I’m so intent on the city center and seems excited when I mention Eric’s family. I don’t ask why, as I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t like the answer. I ask if Bryce is available…the maid looks uncomfortable and I’m plagued by the faint knowledge that something happened to my younger brother. What sort of world is this that I haven’t even seen my mother, my father is distant and my brother is dead or worse?But at least another carriage is made ready for my trip into the city. The mission… concentrate on the mission and then we can go home.