Taura in Wonderland

Coffee Lounge: Early Morning
Robin: It's been awhile since we've seen each other, Taura. Um, it doesn't bother you that I'm in this form, does it?
Taura: Oh, of course not, Robin. I wish I had wings like those. No wonder you were always such a good pilot. You had a natural affinity for flight.
Robin: It is definitely the one saving grace of this unfortunate situation. If it does bother you, I can try changing back into my human self, but I might need to rest awhile afterwards. It takes a lot out of me.
Taura: Don't stress yourself, Robin, it doesn't bother me at all. And I don't think you should feel it's unfortunate, either. Chester certainly doesn't seem to mind it.
Robin: No, he doesn't. Chet may have his flaws, but I really don't know what I'd do without him.
Taura: I know what you mean. I feel the same way now about Sesa. Hey, does Professor McRaven still teach here?
Robin: Yes, he does. He'd probably love to see you again. Maybe I should take you around to visit everyone and I can even introduce you to my friends you haven't met yet.
Taura: Sounds like a plan. Sesa needs to rest awhile anyway, so I have nothing else to do right now.
Preston: Good morning, Ms. Calypson...and, you...Dear me, I don't believe we've met.
Robin: Dr. Abirok, this is my friend, Taura Ása. She used to be a crew member aboard my airship...until Droma blew it apart. Taura, this is Dr. Preston Abirok. He's our school psychiatrist and accountant.
Taura: My, you're a cute one!
Preston: Oh, eh-heh... Thanks, but don't get too used to it. I'm actually a lot older than this picture implies. You see, my other picture was giving me headaches and giving Mr. Tomasaro stomach convulsions, so this one's only temporary until FO draws me a new one.
Taura: Well...you were at least cute when you were younger, then. Wow, it's so rare to see a desert-elf these days. I was beginning to think Christopher was the only one.
Preston: Yes. Once we were so many, and now we are so few. If I hadn't left Aridia all those years ago, I probably wouldn't have survived Karma's attack, either.
Taura: That's so sad. I'm sorry if I brought up some bad memories.
Preston: No need to apologize, Ms. Ása. It's been a real pleasure talking with you, and I hate to cut our meeting short, but I have an early morning appointment to attend to. May Leohtiss's blessings be with you.
Taura: Bye!

...He seems like a nice fellow.

Robin: He is. Preston helped me a few times when I was feeling depressed about this whole Earth demon thing.
Taura: You shouldn't get depressed about it.
Robin: Thanks, Taura. That's basically what he said, too. C'mon, I'll take you around to visit the others.

School Library
Cory: I think that's him in the lower right corner, at the edge of the train tracks.

By Lord Drago, I have no idea how you can tell.

Cory: Yup. I'm pretty sure that's him. Okay, your turn:

Talon: You have got to be kidding me.
Cory: C'mon, Talon, you've got 2 minutes.
Talon: Waldo wears blue pants. There's not a speck of blue in that picture.
Cory: Well, just pick the indescribable object you think is most likely to be him.
Talon: Who on earth drew that scribbly mess? *I* can draw better than that!
Cory: Wow, it's nice to hear you actually admit you have talent for a change.
Talon: Is that what this is? Some sort of bizarre attempt at building my self-esteem?
Cory: Your time's up.
Talon: Ah heck. He was probably hiding in one of the tents.
Robin: Hi, Cory! Hi, Talon! Cory, you remember my friend, Taura, right?
Cory: Yes, of course I remember. She saved my father's life one time when he got careless and was accidentally struck with one of Christopher's lightning bolts. It's not that I don't love him, but sometimes I think that if Amadeus tried to make brussels sprouts without reading the instructions, he'd blow himself up.
Taura: It's nice to see you again, Cory. And, Talon...I don't think I've met you and yet somehow you seem very familiar to me...
Talon: It's probably because you've met my father and I look so much like him. Well, except that I have more hair...
Taura: Oh, I see. You must be Bazil's son. Damn, I just seem to be striking the wrong nerve with everyone today.
Talon: No, it's okay. It's not talking about him that bothers me. It's just when people assume that I'm anything like him.
Taura: I wouldn't do that. You're also a lot cuter than your father.
Talon: Gee, thanks. >)
Cory: What? You're not even going to argue this time?
Talon: What do you mean?
Cory: Every time I say you're cute, you just start going on about how "ugly" you think you are.
Talon: Oh. I dunno. Maybe I'm starting to get over it?
Cory: Or maybe you don't take me seriously.
Talon: Of course I do! But...can't we have different opinions?
Cory: If I say something's cute, it's cute, end of discussion.
Talon: That's not real fair.
Taura: You're both cute.
Cory: I might be if I wasn't stuck with this horribly freaky profile picture right now...
Talon: Hey...why do you get to argue and I don't?
Cory: You don't look like you're maniacally murdering somebody offscreen in your picture.
Robin: Well, we'll see you two again later. C'mon, Taura. Places to go, people to see.
Taura: It's been nice talking to you two!
Talon: Bye! Nice meeting you, too, Taura.

...I thought you were just casting a spell in that picture.

Cory: I am. I can't believe how ugly it makes us look. Maybe you're lucky that you don't ever have to embarrass yourself like this.
Talon: Well, the few times I tried casting spells, I probably didn't look too pretty during the resulting seizures.
Cory: Heh. Wanna play another round of Where's Waldo?
Talon: Only if we get an actual book. I can't take that level of eyestrain anymore.

Astral Observatory Loft: Nucleo's Study
Image: I'm sorry.
Nucleo: Huh? What's wrong? Why are you apologizing?
Image: It must be hard for you to tolerate me sometimes...
Nucleo: Tolerate you? Dear Skiva, what's brought this on? Did I say something that upset you?
Image: No...but I know it must be difficult for you to deal with me...I remember a lot of things...but not everything. And I love our daughter with all my heart, but I still don't feel like I know her yet...
Nucleo: You will in time. You and Cory have a whole lifetime ahead of you to get acquainted. Unlike me. I'm just getting old.
Image: Don't say that! You're only 40, and you look great for your age.
Nucleo: But I'm starting to feel like I can't do the things I used to do when I was younger anymore...
Image: Look, if Harrison Ford can do a fourth Indiana Jones movie at his age, then you can still go on expeditions, too.
Nucleo: Well, I won't argue with that point, I guess. But I will say that you're not difficult to deal with. Especially not compared to what you were like as a teenager.
Image: So, you're sure you don't think things would've been better if I had just stayed gone for good?
Nucleo: Thoughts like this are frightening me, Im. I would never think that. You don't understand the nightmare I went through.
Image: I'm sorry. I didn't mean to upset you.
Nucleo: It's okay. I know you didn't. But please don't ever doubt that I love you and would never want to lose you again.
Image: Okay...was I cuter as a teenager or cuter now?
Nucleo: Hard to tell the difference, really.
Robin: Excuse me, Professor McRaven, are you busy?
Nucleo: Robin, what can I do for you?
Robin: Just thought you'd like to see an old friend.
Taura: Hello, Nucleo. Do you remember me?
Nucleo: Taura, how could I possibly forget? I heard what happened to Sesa. I'm sorry about that, but it seems he's recovering well.
Taura: Yeah, he's doing fine. It takes more than a 50-foot plunge off a cliff to keep Sesa down. Well...so long as there's a lot of sand at the bottom, anyway. Oh, forgive my rudeness. How are you, Mrs. Arcane?
Image: I'm okay...I suppose. So...you really saved my Nuclee's life once?
Taura: Sort of. He was hit with a lightning bolt and took a bonk to the head when he fell over. But he's a tough old cat and was around in a few hours.
Image: I see. Thanks for helping him...How did you get hit with a lightning bolt, Nuclee?
Nucleo: I was trying to show Christopher how to use a spell and I had no idea his magic was that strong...or that I was that weak to it. It was an accident and entirely my fault. A group of Nispatian mountaindevils were drawn to the noise and attacked Christopher and knocked him out, too. If Taura and her friend Song Savis hadn't come along at that moment, we'd probably both had been killed.
Taura: Oh, that Song. Sometimes, I miss being with her, but she could be a real pain.
Nucleo: Well...I was certainly grateful for her assistance, but it was a little bizarre waking up to find myself chained down like a rabid animal.
Taura: Good thing you didn't wake up an hour earlier, before I had removed some of them.
Nucleo: ... How many chains did she originally have on me?
Taura: Pretty much every one we had...She wanted to put the ship's anchor on you, too, but couldn't fit it through the door.
Nucleo: What the hell...? Was she really THAT scared of one little middle-aged mountaindevil?
Taura: What can I say? She's a cynic.
Nucleo: Well, if you ever see her again, tell her I said hello...and no hard feelings, okay?
Taura: Sure. I'd love to chat with you longer, Nucleo, but I think I'll leave you and Mrs. Arcane alone now while I go catch up on events with everyone else. See you later!
Robin: Bye, Nucleo. Bye, Image.
Nucleo: See you both later...Is something wrong, Im?
Image: No...but do you remember when I saved your life?
Nucleo: Of course. You've saved me numerous times...we've always looked out for each other...but then I failed you...
Image: Nuclee, we were dealing with a god whose power was far beyond anything we ever saw before and could ever have imagined. It wasn't your fault. I'm just happy that you went on with your life without me and did a wonderful job raising Cory on your own. If it had been you instead of me, I don't know what I would have done.
Nucleo: You would've done the same thing. That's one reason I was able to go on. I knew that if it had been me, I would've wanted you to do the same.
Image: That's okay, Nuclee. Let's go do something fun before this sketch gets any sappier.
Nucleo: Allright. Wanna help me painstakingly clean some dust off of some excavated earthenware with a tiny little brush in a very thorough and meticulous manner for the next few hours?
Image: Of course I do! Ah, the life of an archaeologist is certainly the life for me!
Nucleo: I could not agree with you more!

East Wing Science & Research Lab
Honen: I am telling you, lizardman, you are wrong. You do not have enough proof to back up your theories. Until you do, I say you are wrong and I am right.
Lizaki: Look, just because my proof isn't good enough for you, that doesn't make you automatically right without any proof at all.
Honen: What! Outrage! I show you lots of proof already. What more you need?
Lizaki: You haven't performed your tests according to proper scientific method. What variables have you controlled for, huh? Hmph! And you call yourself a scientist.
Robin: Dr. Calzoun? Dr. Lizaki? ...Would I be interrupting something by asking...
Honen: Yes, you are interrupting! We are having very important scientific discussion here!
Taura: Oh, it's that adorable little Oni man. Do you remember me, Honen?
Honen: Oh, no, not you again, annoying woman. For ze last time, I am NOT cute! I am an evil and corrupt dictator and proud of it.
Taura: Well, you'll be the cutest dictator the world has ever seen. Why don't you come here and give me a hug?
Honen: Femme folle, get away from me!! Gack!!
Taura: *SQUEEZE* My, you seem a little thinner than last time. Are you eating well?
Honen: Ebanashka!!!! Put me down!!!!
Lizaki: *snicker* Heh heh, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!
Honen: What you laughing at, stupid lizardman? Hrmph.

*dusts off*

My eating habits are just fine.

Taura: Dr. Lizaki, was it? Pleased to meet you. My name's Taura.
Lizaki: *bows* Greetings from the planet Zyrcon, Ms. Taura. Although I resemble the lizardman race of Phainein, I am actually from a solar system far, far away.
Taura: Wow. Just like Deuce and Tomi. So, what was it that you two were discussing before we interrupted? I just love hearing great scientific minds clash in a war of words.
Lizaki: Well, you see, I have a theory that if Wendy's founder Dave Thomas was still alive today, he could kick actor/comedian Dave Thomas's ass in a one-on-one fight, but Dr. Calzoun here rejects it.
Honen: You are such quack!! What about Bob and Doug McKenzie? Hoser's 12 Days of Christmas was pure genius!
Lizaki: And the Frosty Dairy wasn't? Hmmm?
Honen: Only one way to settle this!!



Lizaki: For some reason, that never seems to work for this argument.
Robin: I think maybe we should go before this discussion causes a universe implosion. See you guys later...I hope.
Taura: Bye, Lizaki. Bye, Honen.
Honen: *soupir*

...I still say you're wrong.

Lizaki: Oh yeah. Well, I still kick your ass many times over on Googlefight.
Honen: Dat's cause I'm not named after Polish candy, iguana.
Lizaki: Neither am I. It was just a coincidence.
Honen: Hmmm... Well, I still say you're wrong about ze Dave Thomas thing.
Lizaki: You can't prove it.
Honen: Aye, yai, yai...

School Cafeteria
Lukyan: So, tell me, how does a guy like you land a babe like Robin, anyway?
Chester: Dude. Same way you land all your other passengers. Uh, kind of hard to explain it, though...You might have to take some flying lessons.
Lukyan: Are you sure you're not just misunderstanding me in an attempt to be funny?
Chester: Dude, uh...run that by me again?
Lukyan: Nevermind.
Christopher: ...
Samantha: What exactly are you saying, Luke?
Lukyan: Nothing. I said nevermind.
Samantha: I don't like the way you talk to him sometimes.
Lukyan: Geez. I'm sorry. Forget I said anything. What else do you want me to do?
Chester: Uh, dude...I mean, Samantha...it's okay. Pilot's reflex - mention any word that has something to do with flying a plane and...heh.
Samantha: No, it's not okay. It seems he was implying that you're not good enough for Robin, and objectifying her by calling her a "babe".
Lukyan: Do you people take everything this seriously?
Samantha: I do when it comes to my friends, Lukyan.
Lukyan: I wasn't objectifying her. What's wrong with thinking she's pretty?
Christopher: ...uh well...maybe he lacks tact, but I think it was just some bizarre way of asking Chester how they met...I hope...I really don't want to see a fight in here...
Lukyan: Yes. That's all it was.
Samantha: Hmmm...well, okay...I'll drop it. For now.
Chester: Robin and I met in the scrapyard where we built our airships. I was living there alone for awhile and one night when it was raining I came home and just found her huddled there. Dude, um...she was lost, confused, cold, wet from the rain, and scared to death of me at first...and yeah...I didn't have much, but I took care of her for awhile and she started telling me that she wanted to fly...and then she started helping me with the airships...Um, I think...once I found out that she was half earth demon, I began to think what happened is that she must've flown a long way from somewhere, and then dude...she must've transformed back into a human, but it was so stressful that it took away almost all of her memories...

Dude, so that's pretty much it...although, we still don't know where she came from.

Lukyan: She was probably from Spochella. Earth demons and humans had a deal goin' with the Stone God there. It makes sense that they might intermingle in more ways than one. If that's the case, there's a million reasons for her to have run away. She's better off with you. Sorry if I offended.
Chester: Dude, that's allright.
Robin: Hey, so that's where the rest of you guys are. Taura wanted to visit you while she's here.
Taura: Chester, Christopher, Samantha, and Lukyan! Good to see you all again. It's just like old times.
Lukyan: Minus all the wars and fighting.
Honen: Dave Thomas could not kick Dave Thomas's ass, you ignorant dinosaur!
Lizaki: Yes he can. Now leave me alone while I grab a bite to eat.
Honen: Two words: Uncle Trevor!
Lizaki: Two words: square hamburger!
Honen: Dave Thomas could eat Dave Thomas's square hamburgers for breakfast, lunch, and dinner!
Lizaki: Argh. And people wonder why I use the air vents. I'm getting away from you.

*scuttle* *thwoomp*

Honen: Hey! I'm small enough to fit in there, too! I come after you!


Lukyan: Well, minus most of it, anyway.
Christopher: Is it just me, or did the fighting used to make more sense?
Taura: Well, I guess that's just about everyone. I already met with Aurora and Chance last night. Deuce, Tomi, Jack, and Raymond are all out on the road. And Crow...well, I saw him last night, too, and he just muttered something and walked off. So, I guess I'll just spend the rest of my day with you guys if that's okay.
Samantha: Sure. You're quite welcome to do that, Taura.
Chester: Yeah. Stay with us awhile. Both of you.
Robin: Wait a minute. We haven't met with Zumo yet...
Taura: Honen's lecherous little worm friend? I met him last night, too...unfortunately.
Robin: Oh...I see...I guess that explains the handprint I saw on his face this morning...
Taura: Yup.
Robin: And the footprint on his tail?
Taura: Yup. That too.

The Infirmary
Zumo: ...
Sesa: And this one here, is a Sharp Elsi Mate EL-620 calculator. And this one is my Accuron 831M. Vintage stuff. Now this baby over here is a Bosch sliding calcu-clock. You see it...slides open, and it has the Coca-Cola logo on it. Now this...oh this ungainly thing is the Xinkewei XK-203 calculator. And this one is...
Zumo: *sigh*...shoot me.




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