Do not discuss spoilers about new episodes within the Cbox until at least a week after the episode has aired, if you wish to discuss spoilers simply make a thread about it (Keep the title spoiler free aswell).
The Quartz practically stumbled forward with the force of their own motion, their mounting desperation to find the Sapphire really digging into the back of their mind as 7XB settled in for the long process of berating themselves for allowing such a precious gem to slip out of their sight, and though it was dormant amongst their twisting emotions, there was a certain amount of anger directed at Padparadscha as well. They could not help but feel that the persnickety little Sapphire had done this to spite them.
But still, the thought of her wandering around the planet alone, fairly well at the Earth and it's denizens gave them cause for concern. It was fortunate, then, that the sapphire came scurrying through the crowd towards them.
Their expression melted into one almost euphoric relief, but this lasted only a brief moment before a darker emotion set in.
“You!” They steamed, voice thick with accusation born of worry,” what did..why..eugh! What are you thinking, wandering off alone like that?!” You could practically see the steam radiating from each unfortunate, incinerated snowflake that has the audacity to land upon them. “I said to..I said to stay close!” livid as they were, 7XB had yet to see the single figure moving against the crowd.
Padpara kept her eyes scanning for signs of her comrade, but wondered if the human would have continued trying to get her down to whatever department had been mentioned. She peered over her shoulder to make sure the officer had given up, though it was hard for her to see through the crowd.
She jumped and swiveled her head forward at the sharp sound of 7XB's voice, her eyebrows shot up. Her eyes fluttered as she processed their words, making the realization that they hadn't left her intentionally after all, and it seemed that leaving them to themselves had proven to be more effective at irritating them than she would've hoped. She hadn't intended to give them quite so much space, but it was already done. The sapphire didn't like the way they spoke to her one bit, her brows furrowed. But, in this moment, she had seen through their barrier more than she had for most of the evening, emotions slipping loose in their charged state. It was hard for her to decide how she felt about that, and she didn't have much time to think about it before her words preceded her thoughts.
"I should say as much to you!" Her voice rose, as their tone sparked her unstable mood. She scurried up as she spoke,"I wasn't expecting you to-- ugh," A heavy sigh left her lips. Still, her anger prickled at her nerves, but, she stepped close to them, finished with her passive-aggressive maneuver. Though she could see they were agitated with her, their fervor was as attractive as always; it was good to know they felt so strongly about something like this. She made a mental note, and peered up with a demure look in her eyes,"I suppose you'll just have to keep me close at hand,"
She glanced behind her, and eyes widened as she realized the human officer was still in pursuit, pushing her way through the crowd a ways back,"Um, well, the good news is that I have some quality data. There is a security caste. Though, long story short, it seems I've been targeted by it," She muttered hastily, then pressed her lips together as her head turned back to meet 7XB's gaze. A bit sloppy of her, to allow herself to be caught like this, though truthfully she hadn't realized she was so high-profile here. Having realized that a bit late, she hoped there was a way to get this human off of her trail. Then, Padpara spared a thought for Amethyst. If they were to have to make a hasty escape...would they be able to find the gem? The sapphire began to feel more guilty about ditching her guard.
Though their temper was infamous with their subordinates and countless gems across the universe, 7XB was frustrated to find that they were, for reasons deeper and more confusing that simple honor and duty, unable to truly exert any of that rage on Padparadscha, even as she added such fuel to the fire by way of her retort; But that smoldering, gently peach-hued gaze found their edge dulled, and the most they could manage was a sigh. It was frustrating, this inability to stay angry with her, and their own apparent inability to discuss their feelings.
“Perhaps I should do that..” they began sullenly, though the Quartz was to perk up immediately at the mention of her being tracked back to them, switching to another mode entirely. It was almost a relief to them, the sudden danger, because it was at the very least something they knew how to deal with.
“Get behind me,” they said seriously, eyes catching now upon the form making its way through the crowd-likely this security caste she spoke of. 7XB wouldn't let any harm befall her, that much was certain, but how would they keep from making a scene?..
Her agitation was soothed a bit more at their answer; she could tell they were still irritated themselves, but relented nonetheless. It was much easier to put brakes on her offense now that they were nearer, and there would have to be a truce for the time being anyway-- the officer continued pushing her way through the people, going straight for the gems. In response to the quartz's order, the sapphire gave a simple nod, and slipped around to stand behind them.
As the human made her way up, she spotted the sapphire as she stepped around the quartz. Her eyes scanned the huge gem, and her lips pressed together as she puffed up a bit. The officer marched straight up to 7XB, and rested her hands on her belt as she looked up at them,"Would you happen to be in association with this woman, civilian?" She gestured around toward the smaller gem before her hand went back to her belt,"If so-- I'd appreciate it if you both would come with me. The department is investigating an incident. If everything checks out I should be able to get you back before midnight,"
While the officer spoke, people around them began to shoot glances over and try to guess at what was going on. Realizing how easily their cover would be blown in this situation made Padparadscha all the more anxious. The gem's fingers tapped together as she tried to think of something, and she wondered what exactly 7XB's plan would be. For the time being she didn't speak, trusting their judgement, and that they would act on what was important in this situation.
However, the train of thought she was on just kept piling the anxiousness into a heap on her mind. Her experience with humans was limited, but she knew that they had technology that could disrupt the form of gems; she prepared herself to react, just in case. She also noticed something, that this security human seemed to go about her job similarly to the way the sapphire underwent her own arrests. Padparadscha hoped that this human lacked the tenacity of a gem field investigator like herself, and that there wouldn't be more of them.
Whatever these humans brought to the table in the way of defensive capabilities, 7XB did not seem all that worried. Though they had never dealt with this class of human personally, they could only imagine that they were as weak and ineffective as every other example of humanity they had ever come across. Keenly aware of the eyes that laid now upon them, 7XB crossed their massive arms across their chest in what could be interpreted as quite an aggressive stance, fingers curled tightly into their palm; Eyes cut into the officer from above, peering out from beneath a mane of snowy white hair. “You don't know what you're talking about,” they began somewhat confrontationally, “and neither do you. I-..”
“Hey!” Came the interrupting voice, belonging to one of the burliest humans the quartz had ever heard, followed shortly by the second and third, “what's going on here, huh?” As 7XB exchanged glances with the group, they could not help but notice that they shared a similar style of garb with them; what appeared to be the leader couldn't help but notice the smaller gem hiding behind 7XB, turning his gaze then upon the human security.
“You giving these girls some kinda hard time here?” 7XB didn't exactly know what that meant, a bit of confusion shading their gaze as those three humans seemed to take them for one of their caste, “Haven't you turned on the TV? It ain't ‘76 anymore.” The male cursed, attempting to wave the woman off dismissively.
Padparadscha, despite the tension rising in her shoulders, was fascinated with what she saw going on here-- her eyes darted around the scene as the interloper's arrived. It was impossible for her to know what exactly it was that was going on, but these humans seemed to come to the gems' aid against this security member. Was this an example of a higher-caste human? It was easy to think that by the dismissive words and gestures, as hard as it was to interpret them. But just as well, this could've been an example of the in-fighting humans were noted for.
The officer was not amused. Her eyes flicked between 7XB's intimidating stance, and the group that had arrived. She gave a sigh as her attention turned to the human man who'd addressed her, "Alright, keep moving civilians," Her hand slid closer to a black case on her belt, and the sapphire's eyes followed these movements carefully,"This situation is well under control,"
The smaller gem wasn't the only one keeping an eye on the officer's movements, one of the humans who had intervened in the situation had his hand-held recording technology out, pointed toward the officer as he spoke, "That'll be a flattering headline, wont it? This just in, ECPD uses excessive force on the holidays!"
"Enough of that," The officer answered, though she seemed to respond to the pressure of the situation as her lips pressed into a line and she kept herself puffed up. She glanced around, attention thoroughly on the conflict that unfolded here on the sidewalk. The human cleared her throat, and looked toward the video record she was being captured on,"There's a warrant out for the West Street arsonist--"
"Oh so you're just out here taking down names then?"
The sapphire kept her eyes moving as she attempted to get a read on the situation. Inspiration struck her as she paid more attention to what each person was wearing-- it seemed that humans telegraphed their caste with the things they wore. It was such a clear idea to her in that moment, she wondered how she hadn't noticed it before. Her brows lifted as she made another realization; had 7XB's disguise come as an advantage in this situation? Further, what was the function of this caste that they seemed to be associated with? It became her goal to figure that out as she scrutinized the three humans who had come to their defense, occasionally looking back to the officer and the quartz.
"Listen," The officer said, a bit of an edge in her tone as she tried to hold back her increasing vexation,"All of you need to keep moving, this is official ECPD business,"
Though they knew little enough about what was going on, 7XB hoped they could somehow take advantage of this case of mistaken identity in order to escape. While they could no doubt outpace this human, it was almost a given that they would be in possession of some sort of tracking or communications device with which to harass the two gems later on. Whatever all these humans were saying to their counterpart seemed to be pulling her focus, and though they were not exactly small, 7XB’s eyes began to open to an alternative method to get away as a even more humans added themselves to the small, gathering crowd, their recording devices pointed in the direction of the bothersome example of their species.
“Hey, we know our rights, man!” Came another rousing voice from the crowd, distinctly more feminine, “Leave 'em alone!”
"This is harassment! " You should be ashamed of yourself!”
They took this moment to duck down behind the swelling mass of organic life, turning to take hold of Padparadscha. Silently, they nodded in the opposite direction, assured that the plan was simple enough to be communicated nonverbally. They began moving, many of the humans too distracted to really mind being shunted to the side. Behind them the commotion only got louder.
The sapphire was completely enthralled in her effort to try to understand the complexities of whatever had just unfolded, brows furrowed, tapping her chin as people pressed around the scene. Her head flipped and swiveled as she tried to look around at everyone and identify different castes or interpret things that were being said-- though being so short didn't exactly come as an advantage in this pursuit. Just as she was thinking of how convenient it would be to get an overhead view of the place, she felt the familiar grasp of 7XB. She swiveled to peer back at them, her brows lifting over her expression, a bit surprised to be pulled out of her investigative state. At their quiet suggestion, she returned a short nod, knowing that now would be the best opportunity they could hope for to ditch this human official.
Though, even as they lifted her up and began moving through the crowd, she tried to turn to peer back at the increasingly rowdy mass that had gathered around the unfortunate officer, "Fascinating!" She muttered. Her eyes trailed to the quartz's visage, then quickly averted as she made a realization,"Ah, I mean, I apologize, I hadn't meant for...that," After the words left her lips, she remembered the quarrel that had lead up to it. The sapphire wondered if she had ever apologized so much in one day, and decided it would be better to keep her words sealed up for the moment. She released some tension with a quiet sigh, and kept an eye on what was going on in their wake for them.
From where she was, it was very hard to see anything that went on in the node of chaos they'd managed to escape, and resigned herself to just keeping an eye on whether they were being followed. It looked as if more officers were arriving on the scene behind them. Only a portion of her focus was on that, however, as she was preoccupied; facets of the mission had been compromised, on behalf of her carelessness, and now she didn't really know where to collect her data now that there was too much heat in this side of the city. What she did know was that she might have to reconsider her disguise, and her approach to both of these research projects.
Whilst navigating the tricky situation in which the two gems had found themselves, it had been easy enough for 7XB to forget about the argument that has preceded it, and in fact they had done just that. Until she has mentioned it, of course. It would be easy enough for them to act as if they were still angry, but truthfully they were far more concerned with ensuring their escape.
“Let's just forget about that,” the quartz gem insisted hushedly, still hunched over to some degree as they broken free of the dense mass of humans, unwillingly to be seen above the heads of these short creatures after the effort has already been put forth to get away, “what's more important is that we find our way out of this region.” Having been here in the past, 7XB knew how sprawling these humans settlements could be, but they would be a fool to think that their knowledge equaled the Sapphire's when it came to these human cities.
“Ideas?..” they were anxious to keep moving, a sudden realization coming to mind as they rose fully, ducking around the corner of the nearest building. "Amethyst..!"
There was an odd look or two spared in the direction of the gems, though whatever was happening further up the street seemed to gather a fair bit of the attention that might have otherwise been on the escaping quartz and sapphire.
Unfortunately for 7XB, the sapphire was not one to easily forget things, and she continued to internally agonize about it despite their request. Additionally, she didn't like the quartz's tendency to try to avoid or forget things (even if she was guilty herself), especially where it came to this. If she were going to treat it as a research project, she needed to understand the whys and hows. Even if it wasn't research, she felt the same. She had the urge to keep talking about it anyway, to try to get to the root of it, but ultimately she decided to let them have a moment of rest from that issue.
After all, what they said was true; the gems needed to continue the mission elsewhere. Where was the question, though. Compelling data was everywhere, she just had to make it into something that could be observed in an organized way. Her eyes went to the buildings that rose up around them, many different ideas popping up in her mind all at once. She shifted to be more comfortable as 7XB stood up, and was glad to be out of the crowded street while she thought about what they said, fewer wandering organics to distract her.
At mention of Amethyst, the sapphire gave a small grimace. "Oh...I'm sure she's fine, but I'll check," She reached over to tap her wrist and bring up her holopanel, and she pushed in a message. Immediately after that, she looked around to try to get an idea for where they were in the city, but decided instead to pull up her map while her holoscreen was out. She thought back on her experiences in this city, and began to think aloud. "The cubicles of each building contain room for human activities, many of which are inexplicable at the moment," She spoke in a measured pace, modulating her tone somewhat to be more cheerful while she pointed around her map,"Nearer to the bay, there is another district somewhat like this one. There are some cubicles in that side of the city that seem to be particularly useful to them, if not quite so packed as this area," Or she hoped at least; too many people in one area made it far too dangerous, and aside it was difficult to categorize them when they weren't performing a proper, identifiable function. She still had no idea what this festival was about, but perhaps she still had a chance to figure it out.
“It's not her survival instinct that I'm worried about,” the Quartz returns somewhat sullenly, glancing about with some suspicion, jagged gaze hacking through the chilly, late-night air. “It's just how much damage she is going to cause before we find her again.” While they were not exactly known for their discretion either, the short time they had known 6UE had given the Clear Quartz what they needed to put together, in their mind, a logical judgement of the Amethyst and her methods. They had long since begun to trust in their ability to gauge other gems, a skill that quite often came in handy when it came to their particular line of work. Who knew what kind of trouble she was getting into out there, but this was Padparadscha's mission after all, and it would fall upon her to deal with any possible repercussions of the purple gem’s unmonitored activities.
Until that moment came, however, there was still a mission to attend to. “Cubicles..” they echoed absently, letting the Sapphire back down to her feet as they searched still for some manner of transportation that could beat their weight and hers while still providing them with a quick means of egress. “Have you any sort of transportation in mind to get us closer to this 'bay’?” That was one of the seemingly infinite names the humans seemed to designate for water, they knew, but as for the specifications of what it meant, they were not sure. With a gesture, practically casual, towards the road, they cut a glance towards her, “Is this all humans have in the way of vehicles?” Then came a light frown at the thought,” I weight more than most of these, for Diamond's sake.”
Her brow twitched as she realized what 7XB meant, and her eyes flicked back down toward her holopanel in anticipation of a message. Though, no message came as of yet. Lips pursed, she took a moment to give herself an internal scolding, likely in preparation for the more overt one she would have to give in the wake of whatever price she would pay for setting Amethyst loose into the city with almost no direction. But, she found herself not yet so worried about it. In time she would get a return message, and would know the state of things on Amethyst's end.
Of course there was the possibility of no message being relayed, but the sapphire didn't want to dwell too much on that while the two of them were still in the general vicinity of possible pursuers...or while there was still time to spend trying to get to the center of what was happening between herself and 7XB. Perhaps it would be selfish, but for the time being, she didn't see another way-- she needed her answers, and she had a feeling that having Amethyst around would impede that goal.
After they set her down, she straightened her coat and peered around, then back down to her map of the city. "I only have first hand experience with taxis," She admitted, pointing toward a bright yellow vehicle that slowed down as if hovering near them, before speeding off,"They'll take you around as long as you compensate, as I mentioned. Bus works in a similar manner, I believe. There are subway trains...but, I'm not really sure how they work, I've only seen one in a dilapidated state," She swept her eyes up 7XB,"If you're concerned about, um, fitting, maybe a bus would work?" She imagined the quartz trying to fit through the door on a bus, and wondered if that would work out. Shape shifting was an option, but they seemed to have a distaste for it, and it wouldn't change their overall weight, on top of the fact that it would blow their cover as "humans" to be seen changing shape. "--Or I suppose we could try to figure out how subways operate," She panned around on her map, pointing toward a subway on the map, then toward the direction it would be in relative to where they stood. All options were a risk of sorts, along with the fact that this would be quickly taking them from the last general area either of them had seen Amethyst.
Many of the terms Padparadscha spouted were utterly foreign to 7XB, but out of all of what was essentially gibberish to them, one word stood out: 'train’. This phrase used in such a context beckoned forth a memory from the foggy corners of the Quartz's mind, a recollection of their last visit to the city, and a cramped metal tube that fired humans from one underground access point to another. In the case of their last mission, it had been to the next human city over, a greasy place known to humans as 'Jersey’ on the other side of the river that separates the two cities. While they didn't exactly remember it fondly, at least it was a method of transportation they were somewhat familiar with; It was more than they could say about these 'taxis’ or.. whatever else she said.
“Trains..yes, I've used a trains before.” Inclining their head in the direction of the terminal, their voluminous mane of bone-colored hair ever so slightly disturbed by it, they extended a hand for Padparadscha to take. “Lead the way, quickly.” The Quartz didn't mean to come off as brutish, not this time, they were simply still in that decidedly serious state of mind. The path to the platform, as expected in a place that was already so densely packed with creatures, was a bit crowded, but no moreso than the last time 7XB had undertaken such an ordeal.
She glanced at them, brows floating a bit. It was a surprise to hear they'd used a train before, and she hoped their experience would come in handy here...because she hadn't the slightest clue what a functioning train even looked like. Though, she had been called upon to lead, and she wouldn't want to seem like she wasn't up to the task. She could sense by their tone that they were "in the zone" now that there was a more tangible goal, and she gave a faint smile as she took their hand, and turned to take them toward the subway.
Her perceptive eyes scanned the entrance of the place as they neared, a hole leading down into the underbelly of the city. "Watch your head," She chimed as she realized how steep the steps were, heading down into the hall way that echoed with footsteps and voices. She noticed lots of things as she stepped down; strings of numbers, color patterns, displays that seemed to be requesting compensation, as she recognized the "$" symbol on them. It seemed likely that, in order to use the train, they would have to give some kind of compensation, which she had been prepared for. The question was, how?
Her eyes passed over a cubicle surrounded in glass, with a few humans standing around it, the words Information Desk stamped overhead, and further down, turnstiles blocked the path. The humans seemed to use some sort of key to get through the turnstile in an orderly fashion. Her eyes lit up as she spotted a big map hanging on the wall next to the Info kiosk, and went over to it while she tried to figure out what to do. She took a photo of the subway paths, then lingered near the information center.
"Greetings fellow human," She chirped as the desk seemed to clear of other humans,"How do we gain access to the trains?" The older woman behind the desk pushed up her glasses, and leaned over so she could peer at the small gem. Then, her eyes flicked to the much taller gem Padparadscha had in tow. The human just sat for a moment.
"Didja get a card?" The woman said languidly. The sapphire blinked at the woman, who did the same in turn. "Ya need a card. Costs five bucks to head downtown during this hour, plus the new member fee. Could get one down at the ATM," Padparadscha's eyes lit again as she knew exactly what to do. With a bit of a smile, she reached down into her hard-light purse and pulled out the box that Pink Pearl had handed her before they headed out. She popped it open, and set a bill down on the counter. The woman's brow raised, but she took it, and held it up to the light. "Two I'm guessing?" The sapphire nodded with an excited look on her face. It was always a good feeling to figure something out."Okay...88 dollars in change, and here are your cards,"
"Oh!" She was surprised to see the clerk giving her money back, but she collected it, and turned to give 7XB a triumphant look as she passed them a card. Before taking off, she jotted a note down into her holotech about the caste this human seemed to represent. "So...um, you've used trains?" She asked, tilting her head toward the quartz. She wanted to know what to do next, though she also had a simple curiosity, wanting to know more about how they'd come to learn about this sort of transportation in the past. For now, she headed more timidly toward the turnstiles, trying to follow what the humans were doing with it.
The advice echoed up to them from farther down the crowded staircase could not have come at a more opportune time, for no sooner had 7XB reoriented their gaze forward before they nearly collided with a poorly placed concrete beam, ducking low out of the way to avoid it. They almost couldn't help a passing chuckle at the perfect timing of Padparadscha's statement, wondering again if perhaps she did possess just a touch of that famous sapphire intuition. Feet touch finally with the once-white, grungy tile of the terminal that waited at the bottom of the staircase, the unflatteringly yellow luminescent light fixtures overhead guiding their way to through the artificial tunnel towards the kiosk behind which sat the rather worn-looking human. High as the ceilings were, 7XB still found themselves somewhat grumpily dodging low-hanging light fixtures.
As deeply as they tried, 7XB couldn't recall how it was they had avoided the 'compensation’ part of this equation last time around, but it seemed as if it didn't really matter, as Padparadscha pulled some manner of green.. fabric out of her hard-light bag, a brow quirking as the human returned many more fragments of ‘compensation’ than Padparadscha had given her.
“I'll never understand these creatures.” they groused inroute to the turnstile, pushing lightly upon the bar, which they had done before, to allow the sapphire egress before turning sideways to saddle through themselves. The platform was packed, the dull screech in the distance warning the civilians of it's impending arrival. "Once before, yes," they admit, hands sliding into the newly discovered pockets of their course human clothing, "the very first time I came here to the Earth, following my objective." That mission took a bit of an aggressive turn, but the knowledge gained was invaluable.
This Roleplay is a prequel to Steven Universe to an extent with some slight retconing and its own progression to the story that will turn out differently to how stuff plays out in the show.Thanks to the message by Rose Quartz several gems are rising up to protect Earth and have labelled themselves as the Crystal Gems. Others on earth are remaining aligned to Homeworld though despite the isolation of Earth from Homeworld
All gems on earth are still stranded, the communication hub is still offline and all the space warps are shattered, it has now been revealed that this is the work of Rose Quartz and her small group known as the Crystal gems. They have rebelled against Homeworld and have chosen to protect the Earth (Trapping themselves on Homeworld to keep the warps down).
Now both sides are fighting among themselves along with fighting against the 'Corruption' a virus is infecting many gems turning most of them into mindless monsters, but those with a stronger will seem to becoming something more sinister.
The Game has changed now. The question has finally been posed, are you against Homeworld or allied with them. Or do you have your own agenda that may or may not been assisted by the ‘Corruption’. Regardless the seeds have been placed down and although it is only the beginning the fight for or against Earth and the corruption has begun. The choice is yours for how it is shaped on the Original Steven Universe Roleplay Site.
Orginal Opening Plot Here Thread That Changed Everything
Differances Between the Roleplay and the Show
*Thanks to Rose Quartz' message the Gems on Earth are entirely aware that the Homeworld Gems intend to wipe out the human race.
*The "corruption"'s Origin is still unknown, some suspect it was a viral infection, other claim it was a Diamond experiment gone awry and other suspect the organics were behind it. Regardless no one seem to have a proper answer about what it was and why its only isolated to Earth
*Garnet, Pearl and Rose are assumed capture on Homeworld
*Garnet,Pearl and Rose broke the space warps to delay Homeworld
*Thanks to Roses Message gems now know what the Kindergarten was used for