1964-08-06 - In This Sleep: Nexus II
Summary: Wanda does not go quietly into that good night.
Related: The Nexus Arc
Theme Song: Hurricane - Fleurie
strange wanda 

The spread of her call into the depths of the earth is wide, encompassing the immediate perimeter of the castle itself. The foundations of the architecture may repel her call entirely being so deeply inundated with a blackness of Dark Arts, but around it, the floral life springs in accelerated growth.

“«HOLY SHIT!!!»”
“«Don’t shoot, don’t — »”

The spray of gunfire is abrupt, white-fire bright, and whatever ammunition they use disappears into the willful rise of greenery around them. Bullrushes weave up and about boots and shins. Tree limbs droop and swat and ensnare. One enterprising soul makes a muted cry when a volley into a nearby sapling’s trunk ends in a sharp twap against his skull to knock him to his back. The wicked briars of the blackberry bushes cause agony for their canes lashing about, strafing as much as the guns can with each sweep to sides and arms. They leave behind embedded thorns and yelps.

“«Run, run!!!>”
“«Edvard, you fucking chicken, get back — »”

Whomever chastises the fleeing figure disappearing in a dead run away from the castle is silenced by some hyper-growth with glossy leaves that quickly nets about him, crunching his gun against his throat in the process. Awkward, yes, but not deadly.

When all is said and done, in those few critical minutes, the remaining six officers are all in various stages of disarray. A few are desperately entangled beyond identification save for a nose here, an ear there, a hand twitching and clawing at ungiving vines or branches. Some handful of others are knocked flat, one dragged into a pile of leaf litter deeper into the woods, and one hanging upside down, cursing up a blue streak as he tries to cut at the whippy twigs that bind his legs haphazardly with a bowie knife. He earns a brief respite in the hangtime of his drop to the forest floor, but a nice root upon impact head-first does the job of ending his flailing.

If she wants to risk opening a door, no one guards them now…at least, from the outside.

That finder spell, the orb of many arrows, reappears in a translucent manner, nearly a ghost of itself. It aligns towards the castle proper, towards the tallest of the towers, and flashes three times.

Something, a blob of consciousness, oozes across the soul-bond and then explodes upon the psyche with the searing pain of saltwater upon open chest wounds to rip one to wakening — vision going to sparkles for the overload of receptors — unspoken, projected like an icy knife, What did you do?! — muffled speech, nearly lost to the frantic heartbeat: “I did tell you that I could not have you wriggling about. The ceremony went as planned, the first half of the invocation is complete. Your…possessed handkerchief…has been contained. We will see if you retain…” It begins to break up more still: “…within our tend…care.” — another solid blow shattering the world — silence.

The force of that blob puncturing her inner defenses doubles Wanda over, an arm wrapped protectively around her midsection as though she anticipates another knife stabbing in. Gods, it hurts.

Her eyes sting and the salted kiss dampening them blurs the world, even as she struggles to ascend above the pain like a bubble. Rather than fight it, she rides the distinct throbbing in her temples and the staccato piercing of her vitals until some clarity seeps through the gaping wound in the psyche.

She can hear her adoptive father’s voice deep in memory, the conscience cast in drippings of slagged iron: This is why you never give way to sentiment, stupid girl. You want to live, you always be prepared to leave behind everything.

She pushes her hair off her face with a shaking hand. If she could see herself, she would possibly be alarmed by the pinpoint black holes in her amaranthine eyes. Troubled by the stark red motes swirling around on a bed of plum.

Trishul, I come. Call your gods and we rise together.

Some part of her psyche screams and some part knows the secret. It never really mattered in the first place, the link, given something else has always been there in its place.

It takes little more than a touch to put one of those hated robes over her clothing. The gun can be forgotten; she knows how to use it, but pointless, really. Wanda stalks to observe the net, seeking the spot of weakness. And that, with the Sight, she is very good at seeing. Fate bleeds over her eyes and shines dully, pointing out where the gap is big enough for her to slide through without triggering the ward.

The Scarlet Witch is going home and for the one time in her life, she’s out to be a homewrecker.


The robe on her body clings, almost jealously, nearly molding itself to her curves and corsetry regardless of the masculine build of its previous owner. It feels subpar to the winding of an overly-friendly cat. It’s a greeting, but one filled with subtle malice and faint echoing impact mentally — the single, muted drop of a piano key perhaps. Or a velvet-padded tumbler falling into place.

Like a Leviathan churning up silt in the depths, deep within that abyssal black internally present, something stirs.

Between the threads of Dark-touched warding one can slip with a twirl of the metaphysical dice and the landing atop the roof of the castle wall is soundless, no doubt. Three stories of empty, dark windows flash by in her ascent. No physically-present guards exist here. It may be hard enough to balance on the cusp of the sharp inclines of the main hallway roof. The courtyard within and far below is also still, nearly mockingly so and a reflection of the apparent certainty of the one driving this madness.

Foolhardiness or years of planning come to fruition? Only time will tell.

To her left, the largest of the castle’s three towers, apex of the triangle in theory.

To her right, one of the two smaller towers with its sibling separated by a broader, less steep roof.

Slipping carefully down could mean attempting to open a window and gaining entry this way. The largest tower has a open gorge rather than a cap; perhaps a doorway exists here? A rain-soaked German flag flies limply from a flagpole rising up from this surface. The courtyard, empty as it is, is guaranteed to grant access somehow into the castle itself.

Where to go?

Regardless, continuing along the narrow spine of the roof will mean adopting the grace of a cat to avoid tripping the webbing of warding that hangs down. It may be simpler here than below; the strands are farther apart. A slip on wet tiling would be enough to trigger a reaction.

The finder beacon is still present, fail and blurring with difficulty in keeping cohesive, but its arrow remains true. Mostly. Like a compass over a lodestone, it’s having a hellacious time keeping one particular direction in mind. It may come down to intuition itself if whatever feedback is screwing up the tracking spell has its druthers.


Choice. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter the route she takes. The outer walls of the castle lead to the same place, towers portioned in a triangle. How much violence she intends to unleash is another matter. Not for the first time in her life, Wanda might wish for the devastating speed of her quicksilvery brother, the brighter twin, for whom time is optional.

Scarlet shimmers abandoned under the robe created simply to blend in, she turns once more to the task at hand. Rather than threaten her neck trying to find one of the narrow upper-storey windows on the steep roof. Better to nudge the panes open while seated atop the triangular peak than risk anything more.

Her movements are cautious and efficient, sparing a little speed for the assurance of not falling headfirst into the inner courtyard. As soon as the window slides open, she flips onto her stomach to ease her way through after scoring a glance with the Sight over the interior.

The hinges of the window have been recently treated by the smell of oil when one gets close and make no noise as they allow it to open. Someone was lazy and forgot to latch the lock, but…three stories up? Really, bosses? No one’s coming in through this way…

…except the Witch.

The room beyond seems to be a small office of sorts, very clerically organized. A desk takes up the majority of one-third of the room, the back of its chair facing towards her. The stacks of paper are crisply-aligned, all the pens put away in their holders. Manila file folders, about four in total, lay to the left of the desk. Neat handwriting in German on the topmost tab translates to: “Tibet - Jan-Jul 1962”. The rug beneath the desk, a Persian design with fringe, is clean, and the wooden floors around it waxed. Whomever works here does like to make an impression. Masculine touches abound and then…there are the more esoteric notes that shade the room towards the occult.

Hanging from the wall, in a glass case, a sabre that, to the Sight, has a clinging slime to the blade. Cursed, perhaps, but it’s all contained behind clear archival paneling. A clear ball, the size of a grapefruit, sits on a black marble pedestal to the upper right corner of the desk. A stuffed raven sits by the door on a smaller desk by the door, mantling, its beady eyes glinting in the low light entering in from the window. It seems to guard the letterbox. The smell of the room contains a fine cologne, notes of burnt paper, and incense, but not cedar- or sandalwood. Something darker, sweeter…blackened sugar might do it justice.

A clammy gust of wind coming in shifts some of the papers in their neatly-organized stack. In bold font, the title at the top left-hand corner of a page revealed reads:

Hexenkarthotek vol. 10
Organisiert von…

The rest of the page covers the remaining text. A scrap of paper seems to be acting as bookmark deeper into the stack, more handwriting present on it.

The door to the room is solid save for a frosted pane with numbers painted backwards on it and a name. The hallway itself seems lit by a homely golden light through the glass.


The scents reach her first, attuned as she is for the unusual. Under the circumstances, cologne might tell her much about the occupant. Inhaling the concoction allows for only the briefest diversion, though she’ll rightly accept blame for appreciating the dark notes among the crisper intellectual stimulants.

It heightens the logic struggling through a sea of simmering anger and pulls her back together bit by bit. Wanda ceases her aromatherapy, nudging the window mostly closed with a light touch of her fingers.

Then the survey, done quickly. A card index of curses, a manila folder for the functions in Tibet. These tell her a fine idea of what they might be looking through, and rather than disturbing them, she points at the nearest blank page of paper.

And the first test: a very simple spell to bless her.

Her caution is warranted, the spell used to decipher whether anything /else/ comes jumping out of the woodwork. She’s listening for wards even as her sight is overlaid by the Sight opened to a wide panorama instead of narrowed down.

Should nothing bite, she performs a quick amanuensis spell to copy the material from the files onto the other page. That’s easy and portable to take with her, armed as she is. Next comes the careful, light pace to the door. Interesting as the office is, she’s not intending to stay there and ransack the place for information when her beloved is at risk.

The blessing is manifold — double-edged in its own way. The wards outside of the building do not react. They are cast to be literal: alert and prevent invasion externally. Inside the castle proper, the atmosphere itself is charged in a way that the sensitive and gifted can feel. Not uncomfortable, just…full of potential.

That her castings trigger no internal wards could be of note.

Mystical sympathy?
Prowess on her part?
…expectation on the part of the castle-minders, talented in their own insidious ways with the Darker Arts?

She takes the paper without reaction from the room as a whole. The information copied will be damning in its own way, given the time to be read and considered. The ambient light glints in the eyes of the stuffed raven when the Witch walks by.

The door will open out into the hallway soundlessly. More oil on those hinges. Whomever worked in the office really doesn’t like squeaky hinges. The hallway itself is broad, wide enough to stand nearly six men shoulder to shoulder across. Carpet runs along its center, more utilitarian and a scuffed tan, leaving a foot of revealed stone flooring on either side. The decoration is sparing here: a few portraits and landscapes on the walls without placards of names or places, a handful of waist-high tables that could have housed a fern if someone cared, a tapestry far down, nearer to the main door leading to the smaller of the two towers accessible from this level. To head to the smaller tower is to turn left.

To reach the largest of the towers is to turn right. She’s managed to enter the upper story of the wing about two-thirds of the way down towards this direction. It’s not but a simple jaunt a few dozen yards. Nothing to it, she should she head in that direction.

Well…nothing but the sudden sound of voices conversing from one of the various office doors in that direction. The occupants can be heard discussing something in low, brisk tones. It has the feeling of being just shy of an argument, one commanding officer at odds with another within his chain or at his level. The crack of the door is wide enough that passing by it unseen will be incredibly difficult; the sunlight shining in through one of the windows in the wall would mean a glancing shadow in the field of vision.

Passing by will be very difficult and require some mitigation. Luck, perhaps, or a twist of Fate?


The darkness within that hallway implies sneaking past the door may not be the smartest idea. A quick hop of teleportation, on the other hand, does away with the need to worry about silent creeping around. She might just as easily take the ceiling, her fingers poised to move along it, and her toes, though that runs the risk of not being exactly quiet either.

The blessing still carries with her, the simple spell at her breast hoping for a moment of unfurling. Wanda releases that first to tilt things in her favour.

Without a sound, she pulls her energy into herself and releases it through two short gestures, allowing for a very short hop. Around the office further down the hall — that’s all.

|ROLL| Wanda +rolls 1d100 for: 93.

The conversation doesn’t even break. Luck is decidedly twisted in her favor and the spell holds true. Perhaps one of the officers glances over, but the castle has an atmosphere all its own and he’s used to little frissons here and there.

The basement level of the largest tower exudes its own malevolent tap-tap on the shoulder every now and then. They’ve learned to ignore all but the most pointed of spikes from it.

Reaching the heavy wooden door, likely the original panel of hundreds of years of age save for the modern lock-fittings, means needing to open it. Placing one’s palm upon it is to feel the coolness of the air clinging on its surface…and then the phantasmal mirroring, the passing dream of broader fingers fitted against hers, the scarred dexterity reflected.

“ — kshasi, can’t — stop — ” The mental communication scatters like dandelion fluff in the wind and the sense of a harrowing high of nauseating adrenaline, consciousness bolstered by it, slowly slips away again beneath a dark surface.

The pull-ring to open it is icy-cold.

The tower itself is as expected. The narrow stone stairs, with railing bolted in by more recent society, go down, down, down… Electrical lighting, with the wiring hanging on the walls themselves, shines every ten feet or so. A landing can be seen to indicate the next level, one floor down, with another door. The stairs then go on still. The lights farthest down seem to have trouble shining, as if the air is thicker or…something naturally abhors their presence.

Sometimes the Vishanti ride with their Conduit, and betimes they bother to extend tiny graces upon the other practitioners on the arts. Have no doubt, she denies her importance to their tale except as an impediment and an object lesson. Wanda Maximoff, the girl who must not be named, expects no favours.

The only favour she anticipates is protection of their chosen against Oshtur’s dread brother. His vessel, profoundly denying her fate, snaps her hand back when resurgent memory claims her as its volatile victim. How much here is real and how much emant to torment as visions from the corner of her eye could? The darkness has many terrors. A wise woman keeps walking or supplies her own light.

Fuck you, vile fearmonger. She could waste the time thinking worse things, but enough rebuts the sentiment with minimal force. The weight of the necklace is a reminder, the embrace of her corset a dark shadow ‘round her waist and chest. Thoughts to buoy her up, for rage is hot and not chilling, a dish fueled on the warm memories of a horrifying night in Vienna that turned out for the better. Even that damn jewelled quetzal of Baron von Mordo, arsehole supreme, satisfies her mind against worst things.

Her gaze flows briefly to the tower spiralling higher, but if this is the only route to her, then the choice is clear enough. Down then, her Sight bleeding to the point of being exhaustive in its width.

Something is there, there on the stair
coming down, coming down, stepping with care.
Coming down, coming down, slinkety-sly
something is coming and wants to get by.

If only the poet Moore knew she’d be unconsciously pulling from the Witch’s descent to the depths of the tower. Step after step, so very many, to be taken at a soundless mince or a pattering speed. Crossing the landing of the second floor triggers nothing.

No triggers. No insurmountable defenses.

Is it worse waiting on a hair’s balance for something to lash out or considering what such a lack might entail in the end?

The Sight proves to benefit her immensely in the end. She can easily spot the aura of another practitioner suddenly appearing at the bottom of the staircase, the oily threads proof of dabbling within the Darker Arts. Hooded, short, it seems that they might, at any second, begin making their way up the steps and onto a collision course.

But no. Past the end of the stairwell and towards the far wall of the tower. To the door that leads to the dreary rain of the outside and…stopping short of it. There’s a moment of muttering, an audible cover in case she wishes to sneak further down the spiraling stairwell and see precisely what the warlock is up to. It’s in German, strung together to form a command — not words but Words — and the air in the tower suddenly dances like water in zero gravity.

To the Sight and such heightened senses, there comes the sound of heavy weight moving. A Mystical door opens instead of the proper old wood. With a resounding thud and the sound of a seal sucking back into place, the acolyte in their woven wool robe of ash-grey is gone.

From that direction comes the sweet draw of cello strings to wend through the mind, a speechless entreaty, to tug at the heart strings in minor key.

The Witch frowns from her strategic perch on high, pressing her back to the wall to obtain some measure of shelter and cover as needed.

Those terrible sweet songs torment her in their fashion, and she cannot possibly unfurl all the threads at once. Her hands open and she flings her fingers through a sharp, twisting correction that pries open the vanishing portal. Choice cannot be understated.

The cost to her hurts, in a way, the surge of energy borrowed from the line buying her time and purchase, but it’s like raking her fingers into a closing door and hauling it back. Something always gets pinched.


Luck on the Witch’s side has the falling oculus wrenched open once more. Stepping through the portal leaves a momentary smearing of discomfort upon the aura, like accidentally swathing oneself in mucus. It dissipates quickly, but not before lingering just long enough to possible incite a shiver.

The ‘Hall of the Dead’ extends for a length distance ahead. Lit at strategic points along the walls with round frosted orbs kept alive by flickering electrical wiring, there’s enough light to tell that the brickwork composes the original foundation of the castle as well as elements of shoring in newer stone and cement. There’s not a sloppy inch to be seen. By the careful dryness, cool as it may be, it’s clear that the occultists intend to keep the space reverent. Beneath her feet, wine-red carpeting sans a pattern spreads thick to prevent the chill from soaking up as best it can.

Various tapestries and tabards hang along the walls and every dozen feet or so, mirrored on each side of the hallway, a carefully-carved colonnade rises to meet the low ceiling. Looking closer at what the artist chiseled reveals various historical events in the Mystical span of humanity. Demons cavort on Earth, gods tear holes in warriors and reality alike, and there’s the pervasive continuity of Norse aspects to it all.

It’s so very quiet, in the way that only being completely underground can convey. Combine this with the thickness of potential in the air and the closeness to the ley lines beneath, muddied as they are, and the fine hairs on the neck and arms are set to crawling. Turning towards the distant end of the hallway is like aligning on some unseen compass.

But why is it unguarded? Sneaking in quietly enough will mean not drawing the attention of the Sonnenrad’s acolyte, walking yards off still towards what appears to be another giant doorway beyond a widening of the architecture.

Always use the force necessary for victory. There is no fair fight, girl. There is survival.

Lessons of a Chthonic cultist, the highest priest, lingers hard in her thoughts. Terrifying, once, to stare up into the face of her adoptive father and see bitter truths writ large upon those unforgiving features. What child didn’t long for a smile?

Fear sits back as she falls into the oldest of patterns, padding on very quiet feet. A pinch of fate in her favour stands as a small adjustment, just enough to allow for correction. So far magic has been her gain, but nothing stands in the way of dead drills, practiced over and over, until they come as a natural factor.

Wanda was trained to survive, trained to kill if need be, sanctified in violence. Her birth was in blood. It’s not much different now as she descends purposefully upon the acolyte. The backup choice is flinging an arc of silence around them, provided she is spotted first. If not, then the precision point strikes are hard to the side of the neck until she can weave her arm around the exposed neck. Choke-holds are a terrifying thing, when applied correctly to the jugular to cut off oxygen and blood flow.

Five seconds, someone falls.

|ROLL| Wanda +rolls 1d10 for: 1.

Nearly perfect, but her adoptive father still would have found a lesson in her approach. After all, her magics and powers are sympathetic to the pervasive miasm around the castle and within this dimensional oddity — but her aura has the touch of a certain triad, a brushing of lively gold and the ever-present wendings of amaranthine.

Somewhere, he rolls over and mutters about the idiocy of feelings.

As the Witch casts her sound-proofing, the acolyte wheels and a knife flashes out, a wave-edged ghurka in not steel, but bronze. It dances along the corset’s leather, diagonally from hip to upper outer ribs. The tough armor parts like silk beneath its sharpened swish and a thin line of red is sure to appear shortly in its wake. It won’t sting at first, only after the further actions of movement drawn attention to it. The young woman’s eyes, wide with fright at actually encountering the dreaded Scarlet Witch, blessed of their Lord, disappear as the blow to the neck causes her to contort in an unavoidable rictus of pain. Another, and the descending blade is dropped from numbed fingers. The Witch knows her nerve points well. Easy enough to slip around and lock beneath the delicate jawline of the teenager.

The knife makes a muted sound of impact on the ground, quickly to be covered by faint gurgling gasps. The acolyte digs fingernails into the forearm within reach and tries to reach back with the other hand, going for the face. Her nails aren’t manicured politely, no, more spear-tipped than anything else. They would break skin easily enough.

Five seconds. Five seconds of a wriggling, horrifying, kicking follower trapped. The pulse felt against engaged muscles surges in pressure as the cardiovascular loop is stymied and then…the frantic scrabbling lessens dramatically.

The acolyte goes limp like a life-sized doll. Dead-weight. Dead?

Wanda anticipates the usual: Scratches, attempts to break her pinky or thumb in an hopeless effort to release her grip. Not with her elbow hooked just so, and the position with her feet planted for a rotation to the wall or floor as needed.

The trick to bearing someone’s weight down or adjusting a pin lies in adaptability. Trying to cut through the sleeve of her oft-mended coat takes an effort, doubly for the sleeves gauntleted by a few bracelets. The Witch is hardly dread, though the amaranthine blur over her narrowed eyes grows so intense it burns.

Don’t kill. Hippocratic oath, sis.

The acolyte could to drop to the ground, but instead she’s placed in the most convenient spot Wanda can hope to stow the girl without wasting extra time. The knife comes with her, just in case of poison, and any extras on the unconscious girl are checked for. A length of cloth binding wrists and another stuffed in her mouth as a gag is unfortunately essential.

She’s going to snatch a victory from the jaws of defeat even if it’s her own damn forefather.


Not dead after all, though sure to wake with an amazing headache and nightmares in sleep and waking alike. The Sonnenrad does not approve of weakness and even becoming an acolyte was a trial. There is no room for failure.

Alone again within the hallway, all that remains is to continue down its length towards the expanse of a larger room at its end. Those double doors still stand, foreboding in size and material, and as one approaches, it seems…there’s a trick to them.

A set of cement doors, ostentatiously large and decorated in scrolling patterns of thorny briars appears to be the next barrier. The designs are inlaid in a metal that hums and pulses like a heartbeat. The walls of the decagonal foyer angle outwards; if observant, one can see that four of the room’s walls have a squared inset about waist-high with closely-aligned cement bars that allow only a half-inch of space between them. Airflow through these dark spaces is minimal. No sound issues from within them.

A huge circular motif, centrally placed in the two giant doors, is the focal point. The motif itself is three hares, all stretched in frozen leap, captured in full flighty extension of body in eternal chase of one another, nose to tail. It embodies the essence of threefold rotational symmetry. Each hare shares one ear with another. Inscripted around the outer edge of the giant coin is the following:

The secret is not great when one knows it.
But it is something to one who does it.
Turn and turn again and we will also turn,
So that we give pleasure to each of you.
And when we have turned, count our ears,
It is there, without any disguise, you will find a marvel.

Three crank-handles inset within a rectangle of thick wood stand ready for touch beneath the motif.

( 1 ) ( 2 ) ( 3 )

Surely it can’t be as easy as turning the handles…?

The Witch approaches the doors, and indeed, for a moment she calculates the likelihood of a blast blowing them apart. Mayhap vanishing through the gaps or seeking a means around. Her thumb runs along the charms at her waist and finds one, a disc of soft cloth inside a rim of wax. It snaps with almost no pressure, releasing the healing spell buried within.

Small comfort for a cut, but at least it closes up the ruby line. The knife will be another matter. She has to wet her lips and clean that another way.

Doors, wheels, hares. Sacrificial rabbits, when she is neither rabbit or wolf, but prone to bridling a curse. It’s not an option. Her gaze flows over the mentioned statement, and then she reaches for one of the wheels. The Sight is already burning alight, she has a choice there to see what becomes. But it’s a puzzle. Probability. Twofold turns, ears.

Someone doesn’t eat rabbit. A good thing. She reaches for the first wheel and rotates it, marking its position. And those damn hares.

The sound of giant interlocking mechanisms within the door herald the sound of the progress. The hare motif rotates clockwise one hundred-and-eighty degrees before stopping.

Nothing else happens.

First, the counting of ears. Because there could be four ears or seventy-two ears, or no ears.

The Scarlet Witch pauses to consider. The riddle doesn’t say to turn another dial, nor does it indicate she should not. One can sit there and guess, or they can go on instinct. Second turn this time around goes with the original. No reason she can’t crank the thing back if she needs to as a reset and move on to the second of the rondelles.

//And I get an extra jar of honey because fuck you, Prince of Flies. //


Turning the first handle again brings her continued progress.

More smooth clanking of interlocking gears and the motif rotates another one hundred-and-eighty degrees to return to its original, upright position. The metal inlaid into the designs takes on a low glowing, orange in color, and the humming intensifies. The shine seems brightest in the shared ears of the hares.

But those gigantic cement doors still don’t open. There are two other handles to crank once.

“Rakshasi…” comes the breath into the curl of her ear.

The only marvel in the world is life. Arguably; just ask someone obsessed with ending it.

Shoulders back, the brunette shakes out her hair and the shimmering scarlet expanse of gemstones and garnet stones suspended upon a backdrop of luminous entwined threads marks exactly whom she is, the hood and plain robe of the Sonnenrad concealing the avenging lover; the Witch; the wife, mother, and sister. Not the daughter.

The only capacity is one turn of the middle pattern, her fingers skimming along the rotational boundary. A pause, a look to the rabbits. Three, three, three. Another turn to the third.

|ROLL| Wanda +rolls 1d4 for: 1.


The inlaid metal of the door flashes bright-red before dulling to a familiar sickly black streaked through with ocean-green.

The distant thud comes not from the tumblers within the door, but from within the sudden falling of one of the sets of barred barriers in the foyer’s walls. From the depths, a low, purrling growl is heard, no higher in pitch than that of a small wildcat.

What emerges is something from another age — dimension? — in white fluff, beady red eyes, and nails that should belong to a harpy eagle. It’s…the offspring of a komodo dragon and an arctic hare, limbs angled in knobbly joints and someone got really creative to stick cuttlefish tentacles where those adorable whiskers would normally be.

Thank goodness she used that healing charm earlier. Free-flowing blood would have been an immediate draw. As it is, its movements speak to senses heavily utilized other than vision itself. A suckling, snotty inhaling sound is heard as it attempts to scent her, crawling across the floor towards the door.

Turning that third handle was the definitive point in unlocking the entire mechanism.The sudden shift in air as one of the doors loosens in its stalwart moorings is noticeable…and draws the attention of the killer squid-bunny. It arrows its stare in that direction and begins a freakish lolling lope towards it!


Stupid Chthon, ruining even nice rabbits and bunny stories. It’s not Beatrix Potter’s fault; she was not an evil English cultist inculcating children against the dangers of tentacle faces.
Lovecraft did that well enough, thank you.

Wanda isn’t standing around sucking down air and holding her sliced side, even mostly mended. She isn’t twirling her knife like a bloody carny waiting for exciting audiences to show up.

No, she’s dropped back into a highly defensive stance with the knife gripped in her left hand, the right for the spellcasting if needed as the door slides. And those curious panels reveal their use, as bunny hutch doors. There are no marshmallows and pretty flowers here, only violence.

A springing run for the door, then, hauling it back to allow her admittedly slender body through. Pietro might not think much of that start, but then he’s not here being any use rescuing the Sorcerer Supreme, either. Jerkface McCoy and his nephew, Mini-Awesomeface McCoy, are probably off having adventures.

She flies through that gap, hauling the portal behind her. One has to hope Mama Bunface isn’t waiting.


The cement doors move with surprising ease given their weight (someone really doesn’t like rusty hinges) and the heavy panel slams shut with an echoing BOOM.

A single tentacle, having licked at the curve of her hip, lies flopping on the ground by her boots. Beyond the doors, the faint sounds of nails being gouged into the poured rock can be heard. It sounds really annoyed to be deprived of sucking the marrow from her bones and makes this god-awful raspy, dying-rabbit-scream to accent this. Still…it’s not getting to her, not with easily three feet of solidity between it and the Witch, all stabilized with a lattice of rebar cursed through and through with some nasty tricks.

Another room, the end of the line. It dips in the center, two steps down, towards a large circular space. Perhaps a table could have stood there at one point…? No windows and the only tapestries hanging from the walls are plain save for the lightning-wheel of the Sonnenrad displayed proudly, blue-green upon inky background. Oddly spartan…and recently cleaned. The scent of ammonia and…the tiniest lacing of eucalyptus play through the air.

At the very end of the room hangs a mirror and beneath it, a thin box. Ovaloid, about two feet in diameter, three in height, it has presence and may even strike one as being counter to the decor of the room itself. Baroque scrolling in a dark wood nearing black frames it. Old world opulence projects from it even as it reflects her approaching self back at her.

Or is it herself? This reflection has a sense of being delayed in movement — and along with this comes a wary discerning of whom she is. If that’s not enough to draw attention in the sepulchral silence of the room…

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