OoC: This RP happens some time before the events in Datura and the Twilight Tea.
IC: Yet another door. It was just as well. The current world, as much as she appreciated the scenery, was growing dull. Dinosaurs were poor conversationalists compared to dragons and a good percentage of people. So, of course, the summoner went through.
Then, promptly fell on her knees, retching and hacking violently.Only well after her heaving had ceased to be productive was she able to take any notice of her surroundings. She looked around, and what she saw, heard and felt nearly made her weep.
A dying planet surrounded her. The air was thick with the smell of waste and burning. The hillside she stood on was craggy and desolate, studded sparsely with stunted, gnarled trees and weedy plants reaching feebly and clawing toward the sickly grey skies for a few weak rays of sunshine. They clung desperately to life, overlooking a city the likes of which the ancient woman had never seen.
Buildings reached to the very sky, taller than the most ancient trees of her home. Miles of monstrous concrete spires lit up by thousands of tiny windows, all encased by one giant bubble. All to keep the people in and the death out. All so they could ignore the death throes of their planet.
And, dying it was. All the energy around her was poisoned, festering like an open wound as it coursed through her. She sat on the hillside, clutching her head in pain as it hung between her knees, listening while every sign of life for the miles of her empathic range screamed in her mind.
Some cried for release, others for rescue, but the over note of the chorus was rage. The planet was angry... so, so angry with her children in their bubble cities, who had ignored her for so many centuries. Now, Aurora did something she had never done of her own volition. She slammed the door on her power, cutting herself off from the world around her until it flowed around her like a stone in a stream instead of through her as always, shutting out the cacophony from her mind.
Now, at least she could think, but the damage had been done in the minutes before she cut herself off. She could feel the festering poison of the planet in her body, corrupting her own aura, her own core of personal energy. Her empty stomach churned bile, her joints ached, and her head pounded, sharp pains in her temples threatening to pop her eyes from their sockets.
She knew this place could kill her if she stayed long.
Sparks crackled and danced above the ground as tiny forks of lightning criss-crossed between them. They grew in number and intensity until they seemed to form a sphere containing a miniature lightning storm. A moment later however the sphere exploded into a blinding flash of white light accompanied by a deafening roar of thunder.
When the light cleared a smouldering scorch mark marked where the sphere had stood only an instant ago, and amidst the faint tendrils of smoke now stood a figure in white and black – a full body suit with a helmet that obscured the face. However the suit was form-fitting enough for one to tell that the wearer was female.
One minute she was confined within the sterile white walls of the excursion centre and the next she found herself in the middle of a barren wasteland.
Aprella looked around through her opaque black visor and her gaze quickly fell on the woman perched on top of the hillside. Suddenly the helmet seemed to disassemble itself and retreat into the neck of her suit, and long white hair fell down far past her shoulders as sky blue eyes looked at Aurora curiously. She seemed to be more interested in her rather than the state of the world around her, and with a grin to her lips that showed hints of fangs she made her way towards her apparent quarry.
Aurora winced and nearly dry heaved again at the blinding flash of light and thunderous crack of another traveler's arrival, raising one hand and turning her head to shield her eyes from the flash. Ordinarily, she would have felt the rending of space announcing the new arrival before the physical manifestation was apparent. The summoner didn't much care for this new ability to be surprised or sneaked up on. "Most High, I hope I don't have to be hear long..." she muttered, pulling a pair of dark, wraparound sunglasses from a side pocket of her pack, blocking out her distinct blue eyes despite the overcast skies.
She looked up again to see a lithely shaped figure approaching her. Aurora was actually watching over the young woman's shoulder as she neared, more interested in the menacing line of vicious looking greenish black thunderheads than the girl's bare glimpse of canine. She rose, shouldering her pack again, and turning to judge the distance to the city in comparison to the fast approaching storm.
Aprella's grin widened excitedly when Aurora glanced in her direction, but faded into a disappointed frown instead the moment she looked away again. Her large, sky blue eyes almost seemed hurt at what she perceived as sudden indifference, her thin lips forming a pout. It was only then that she realised the other woman had been on her knees and looking unwell, at which she arched her eyebrows both in curiosity and concern. With a few quick bounds and leaps she quickly scaled up the rest of the hill towards her, landing nimbly a few feet behind her in order to give her some space.
She opened her mouth to address her back but hesitated for a moment, deciding to think it through thoroughly before speaking. Aurora didn't seem all that well at the moment and she wanted to be as polite as possible to make a good impression. Greeting her in her own language would definitely be a welcome step.
"Hello!" she said excitedly, and when Aurora didn't respond right away she quickly tried greetings in different possible languages. "Hola? Marhaba? Ni hao? Konni-" Her voice fell short when she finally noticed the immense domed city in the distance that Aurora had been looking at this whole. Her eyes widened in excitement at the new discovery and the pitch of her voice rose at least an octave. "Oh, it's a habidome city! And a very big one at that! I'm not even sure the ones on my world are that big..."
"Not unless the population of an entire continent lives there." Aurora looked over her shoulder at the storm once more as a wicked arch of lime green edged lightning danced across the surface of the thunderheads before rocketing to the ground many miles away. But, not as far as she would like. "Yup.That's a bad day... Stinks like hell..."
"Unless you want to know what sulfur rain is like, I'd suggest you not hang out here." The summoner started down the hill at a surprising pace, skidding and bounding over the steep, rough terrain without a moments loss of balance. At the bottom, she hit the ground at an easy loping stride that is second nature to marathon and cross country athletes, heading toward the domed city.
Aprella looked around her surroundings at the woman's prompting and nodded her head in agreement at what she said. "I am actually getting readings that the pollution levels are much higher than what would be acceptable," she began without checking to see if the summoner was still paying attention to her, "but – hey wait!" she concluded abruptly when she saw the other woman already bounding down the hill towards the city.
With quick bounds and leaps she cascaded down the hill after her much like she had previously climbed it, landing at the base a mere few seconds after Aurora had departed from that very spot. Glancing ahead however she saw that the summoner had already covered quite the distance at a pace which both surprised and intrigued her. She didn't have trouble quickly catching up to her though, and about half a minute later she was following by her side with a stride almost giddy with excitement.
"Hey, why didn't you wait for me? Oh, I should introduce myself! I'm Aprella! What's your name? Are you from that city we're heading to?" Her sky blue eyes scrutinized every inch of the golden-haired woman, almost like a toddler being given a new toy to play with and probing it from every angle. With the difference being that the toddler was probably being much more mature about it.
Aurora glanced sideways at her new tagalong. "Because I wasn't aware I suddenly procured a travel companion, Aurora, and no, I just want to stay out of the rain, and figure out why I'm here so I can leave this festering tumor of a planet. That about cover it?" She wasn't usually that short, but the fact her head seemed to favor the idea of imploding wasn't improving her mood at all.
"I guess..." she replied meekly, her eyes lowering to the ground submissively. The tone of the other woman's voice sent a very clear message that she wasn't in much of a talking mood. If that seemed to curb her hyperactivity for a minute, she was quickly over it before that minute had passed. Her attention span wasn't particularly impressive.
"You mean you're not from this world?" she asked excitedly, her voice rising almost to a squeak momentarily. "I'm not either! In fact I just arrived here!" She paused for a moment as if contemplating a philosophical question. "...Though I think you already knew that... But that's not the point! I could travel with you! Would you mind a travel companion? Oh, you're so interesting! How did you get here without any form of transuniversal relocation technology? At least it doesn't look like you do... But yeah, you're the most interesting speci – I mean, individual, for at least fifty-two point zero six five kilometres! That's actually the distance to the city according to my readings!"
All of that was said in the span of one breath. Maybe two.
"Look, honey, let's just say I'm new in these parts, and the environment doesn't exactly agree with me physically, so if we could dispense with the small talk until I feel less like my brain is going to explode, that'd be great." She lengthened her stride at this point gaining ground on the other woman, despite having shorter legs.
If she had cat ears they would have drooped at that. "Okay..." she replied in a downtrodden voice, and this time there wasn't any room for a quick recovery. Her feelings felt slightly bruised and the disappointment was all too evident on her face. She was like a child being scolded without really understanding what she'd done wrong. Her eyes lowered again and a moment later she realised that Aurora had already gained distance from her. She looked back up and hesitated for a moment, then caught up with and matched her pace again.
When she finally spoke up her voice sounded like she'd just lost all her Halloween candy. "I'm sorry, sometimes I talk too much... At least that's what they tell me..." Suddenly the excitement picked up again. "It's just that you're so interesting and I want to learn more about you and - ...Sorry... I'll be quiet now..."
The kid was so innocent, Aurora nearly felt bad for being so short with her. Almost. "Sorry, I'm really not feeling too hot, and sounds and lights make my head hurt so bad I want to vomit, so if we can just quietly hurry to the city where I can maybe rest a bit and hopefully feel better, I'll try to answer what questions I can then." Honestly, she hoped when they got to the bustle of the city, she'd get distracted by something shiny and disappear.
Aprella perked up almost immediately at Aurora's somewhat less austere request for her incessant blabber to cease, and her usual grin was once again plastered on her face like it'd never left her in the first place. She now had a clear purpose – keep as quiet and unobtrusive as possible until they reached the city and then she would have all the answers to her almost infinite questions. In a way she was still very much a child – promise her candy and she'd be the most well-behaved little girl in the world. That's all she really needed to send her spirits soaring back up on cloud nine.
"Oh, I'd love that!" she blurted out almost too quickly, then immediately tried to tone down her excitement. "I-I mean, if you're feeling well enough, of course! I don't want you feeling... unwell. That would be bad..."
The rest of their journey continued in near silence – most likely to the summoner's relief – and the excited grin never left her face. She would occasionally become distracted by something or other along their path – never any animal or even a fresh shoot – falling behind Aurora and sometimes wandering off for a couple of minutes, but always making her way back to the summoner's side before she got too far ahead. She was far too much an interesting subject for Aprella to forget about her for more than a few moments.
Details of the distant city became progressively clearer as they approached. The city was perched upon a massive circular base with a diameter of at least ten kilometres, that probably rose a good hundred metres above the barren emptiness surrounding it. Above that soared an immense domed canopy of some white semi-translucent material which covered the entire megacity and extended a good deal out from the base structure. It was like an enormous egg resting in an egg cup far too small for the size of the egg. The silhouettes of innumerable buildings could be made out through the protective shell that kept the city alive.
Aprella was left behind much further than she had been the previous times as she paused to take in all the details of the biodome, her grin widening excitedly so that she almost looked like the Cheshire cat itself. When her awe subsided she quickly caught up with her travel companion, literally gushing with excitement.
"It's so amazing! I can't wait to see what it's like inside! It really is nothing like the biodomes of my world!"
If there ever was supposed to be a main entrance in the gargantuan hull of black metal that made up the base of the city, it wasn't made quite obvious enough. The only way to enter the city was through what appeared to be seldom used – if ever – airlocks situated almost two-thirds of the way up - quite some height above the ground. Simply reaching one of those airlocks would be a challenge in and of itself. It was as if those who built it never expected the inhabitants of the biodome to ever want to step outside of their eggshell again.
"Idiots! They locked themselves in a giant bubble forever rather than clean up their mess?!" She looked over her shoulder at the approaching storm. "We have maybe ten minutes before we find out what an acid shower is like." She looked up at the door again, easily some fifty feet from the ground. If she hadn't shut herself off totally, this wouldn't be an issue. She could have levitated to the ledge around the door and muscled them open, but even the thought of opening herself up wide to collect enough energy from the dead landscape was enough to make her head swim.
She looked at the young woman. "Do you have a way to get us up and in?"
As the woman spoke Aprella glanced back at the sickly green thunderheads quickly making their way towards them, lightning forking almost incessantly beneath them and ripping the ground asunder in the darkness they spread in their wake. They had more to worry about than just acid rain – it was nothing less than an acidic thunderstorm of immense proportions heading their way.
Her eyebrows furrowed in what could only be considered genuine concern – an expression rarely seen on her features mostly due to her not realising a danger unless it was explicitly pointed out for her - and turned back to face Aurora. Aprella knew her suit and abilities would probably be enough to keep her safe from the storm but she fully knew the same did not apply for her companion. And she wouldn't let anything happen to Aurora if she could help it.
“Sure!” she replied excitedly, grinning widely. “Just make sure you hang on tightly!”
Before the summoner could reply Aprella had picked her up in her arms seemingly without effort and - following a brief instant where her legs seemed to grow in thickness and build up tensile energy – leaped into the air towards the nearest ledge a good twenty feet above them. If Aurora had been looking at her eyes she would have seen her irises turn from their normal sky blue to pitch black.
Aprella bounded off that first ledge and was already hurtling through the air when she realised there wasn't another ledge to land on within range of her leap. She blinked in surprise for a moment and then translucent green thrusters formed around her calves to propel them up higher with fading trails of green left behind them. The white-haired girl leaned back slightly as a third thruster formed from the module on her back and fired to counter-balance her trajectory. They quickly soared up the rest of the way and she deftly landed on the platform providing access to the airlock with the summoner in her arms, all the thrusters immediately dissipating the moment her feet touched solid ground.
Almost delicately she set Aurora back down on her feet and then almost bounced ahead with excitement towards the sealed doors. She inspected them and her first instinct was to interface with the door mechanism using her suit – she disliked having to break things. Her helmet reformed as she approached and she was silent for a moment as she tried to override the controls and activate the airlock.
“This will only take a minute!”
A bit more than a minute passed however and as the menacing green clouds approached them it became apparent that there was no way to open them remotely. It was almost as if the airlock was never intended to be used again after admitting the initial residents of the biodome.
“That's too bad...” she said with a pout as her helmet deconstructed itself again. “I really didn't want to have to break it...”
Aprella took a step back and raised her right arm to chest height as what appeared to be a translucent green battering ram formed around her forearm. She drew back her arm back and it seemed to pulsate and grow in thickness as it gathered energy, then with a cry she slammed the ram with all her strength against the metal doors only to have it rebound away. Again and again she drew back her arm and battered the doors until she was panting, her eyes having gone almost entirely black and her teeth becoming fangs. The most she managed however was to dent the middle where the two doors met – enough for a minuscule opening.
The incessant flashes of lightning were deafening by now and the wind had picked up considerably, tossing her long white hair about wildly. It was clear that their time was almost up and that if she ever was to open those doors it had to be now.
Suddenly she knew what she had to do. She held both arms towards the doors and two long, thin blades of translucent green grew out of her forearms and forced themselves into the tiny opening she had made earlier. The girl gritted her fangs as now both her arms thickened to twice what her right arm had previously and with a grunt started trying to spread the doors open. Her eyes went completely black without any hint of white and her mouth seemed to elongate slightly as her lips drew back, the opening between them spreading along her cheeks.
Finally she managed to spread them far enough for the blades to slip through completely and they immediately curved at the ends to hold themselves in place. Aprella gave an almost feral growl and pulled at the doors with all her strength, the acidic rain only mere metres away from drenching them with substances that made the very ground sizzle and steam. Eventually the doors spread wide enough to let a single person through as raindrops pattered the edge of the metal platform they were standing on.
“Quickly!” she cried out to the summoner above the deafening din, her voice much deeper and throaty than how it had sounded thus far.
The moment Aurora had gone through she pushed outwards at the doors and then rolled in after her as the blades dissipated, the doors slamming shut right after her and almost catching her foot between them. However she wasn't fast enough to avoid a drop of acid from falling on her cheek, and as she collapsed on the floor in exhaustion with her back against the wall a spot on her cheek sizzled and steamed.
Whether she was too exhausted to care or honestly didn't consider it much of anything, she didn't really seem to care about her injury. Her chest heaved as she tried to catch her breath and when the sizzling ceased there was a nasty burn on her right cheek. Her mouth was slowly returning to its normal shape albeit still adorned with fangs, and her eyes began to show hints of white again. By some wicked stroke of luck, there was a whoosh sound as the air in the airlock chamber was replaced by the sterile air of the city. The inner doors began to slowly slide open out of their own accord, even though the seal on the outer doors wasn't perfect after Aprella's actions.
At the very least they were safe from the elements now.
"Good work." Aurora patted the white haired girl's shoulder as she sat panting against the door. Ordinarily, she wouldn't have tried physical contact with a vampire after such a display. It usually made them hungry. But, the summoner had a feeling she had little to fear from this particular dhampir. A touch revealed an innocent, inquisitive mind, and boundless energy to learn and explore. This was a heart without guile, and any offense made by this youth was made in innocence. It softened the ancient's heart a little, and the girl's answering grin nearly made Aurora chuckle. It was quite grotesque with the fangs and receding distortion of Aprella's face, but she seemed blissfully unaware. It was almost as though she had no idea what she was...
The stale air within the airlock was then replaced with a waft as the next set of doors opened. Sterile was the only word Aurora could think of. Metal and plastic and disinfectant. Aprella's breathing seemed to have slowed, and the wound on her cheek was already knitting slowly, so Aurora stood, brushing off the dust from the outside. "Well, no sense in standing around. Let's go find out what the hell is wrong with this place." She held out a hand to help Aprella to her feet.
They emerged into a large atrium, long unused, that appeared to be some sort of receiving area for newcomers. Posters studded the walls promising safety and security and prosperity within the confines of this "biodome" city dubbed New Los Angelos. Three sets of doors stood at the other end of the room, past three derelict office cubicle. "Well, which way?"
Aprella grinned at the summoner like an excited child as she patted her arm, oblivious to how ghastly her fanged mouth made her seem. She felt extremely proud of herself for having made a good impression on Aurora as well as immensely happy that the summoner seemed to actually like her now. It was a much welcome change from Aurora's earlier disposition and Aprella was quickly back to her easily excitable self. She had completely forgotten about the healing burn on her cheek.
The summoner offered to help her up and she took her hand with an even wider grin even though she didn't really need the help she liked the meaning behind the gesture more. They made their way into the large reception area as Aprella began looking around excitedly at everything she could lay her eyes on. There wasn't really much to see the place looked deserted and unused in probably decades at the very least but she made what was there seem like so much more in her mind.
Oh, this is so exciting! she exclaimed, eyes wide with curiosity and her mouth stuck in a permanent grin as she tried looking every which way at once. It was a few seconds before she even realised Aurora had asked her a question. Oh, um... She glanced at the summoner then placed a finger to her lips in thought as she regarded their three possible destinations. I think we should go through the one in the middle!
They made their way towards the doors and sure enough they opened to admit them further into the domed megalopolis. Before she had taken more than a few steps past the doors however everything changed.
Aprella gave a sharp gasp and froze in place as her eyes widened in surprise. It only lasted a mere second because she then clutched her head with both hands and screamed as she fell to her knees. There was suddenly something in her head a presence forcing itself past her mental barriers and into her psyche, trying to tear away at the very foundations of her mind. Her wide, terrified eyes darted about erratically as tears streamed down her cheeks. Her nose burst and spilled blood as she screamed again, writhing about as if trying to get something unseen out of her head.
Suddenly a feeling unlike any she had felt throughout her existence gripped her like an iron vice - a tightening in her chest that infected her with a growing sense of dread. That feeling quickly escalated into something she did not know the name for - pure, unadulterated terror. She shook and shuddered uncontrollably as it took over her entire body, her mind teetering over the brink of panic and barely managing to keep it under control.
M-My head, there's... Her speech was interrupted by another scream as she toppled forward onto her chest, curling up almost into a fetal position with her knees under her as she desperately clutched at her head. There's something... trying to get inside... I think I'm s-scared...
She screamed again but the scream was cut short with a gurgling sound as her body started to convulse on its own. Whatever was assaulting her mind was succeeding in its attack and if someone didn't shield her from it she would soon be dead. For the first time in her life she felt truly helpless. Alone, afraid and helpless.
Aurora watched her companion drop to what was clearly a psychic attack. She should have seen it coming. She would have had she not made herself utterly numb. The ancient silently cursed herself as she knelt by the convulsing dhampir. Whoever their attacker was, he was trying to kill the girl with fear. Most people didn't actually believe you could be scared to death. Not healthy people anyway. Aurora knew better.
"Look at me." She clasped the girl's hand in her own, pushing a thread of her own calm into the girl. The convulsions slowed enough to give Aurora a chance to pull her shaking body close, cradling her, stroking her hair and whispering soothing noises. She took off the wraparound sunglasses. "Look at me, Aprella." The girl's terrified eyes met her own and Aurora fed her calm into the girl.
Psychic attacks became more brittle over greater distances, and touch boosted connections exponentially. So, Aurora didn't have to open her aura very much to get the job done. Not while hugging Aprella closely and skin to skin contact as Aurora held her hand and stroked her hair. She wiped the blood from under the dhampir's nose crooning softly as her aura slowly and deftly pushed the attacker out. Only the most adept psychic would have thought she was using psychic powers herself until the presence had been pushed from the young woman's mind like water overflows from a cup, and Aprella's aura was gently engulfed in Aurora's own, concealing them both.
It took several more long moments for the silver haired girl's breathing and heartrate to slow as Aurora rocked her, stroking her hair and making quiet comforting sounds. Eventually, Aprella looked up, eyes full of a peculiar mix of curiosity and bewilderment. Aurora smiled. "Atta girl, Appy. Nothing to fear here. Just stay close from now on."
Aprella gazed up at the summoner in shock when the mental torture so suddenly ended. She took to several minutes to recover from the experience and come to terms with the fact that she had been so close to death. Aurora's soothing embrace at this time felt extremely comforting and Aprella found that she needed it more than she ever thought she'd ever need another person's embrace. It felt surreal to her and almost illogical in concept were it not happening to her just then. Aprella's lip trembled and her eyes wavered as they met Aurora's calm blue ones and suddenly the girl was seized by a sudden wave of euphoria simply at still being alive.
She sprang upwards onto her knees and pounced at the still kneeling Aurora, throwing her arms around the summoner and seizing her in a fierce bear hug as tears of relief cascaded down her cheeks. Burying her face into Aurora's shoulder she squeezed her almost too tightly for several moments, before finally relenting and drawing back to face the summoner with a grateful smile. She was suddenly acutely aware of the moisture that had gathered on her cheeks and frowned in confusion as she tentatively touched her cheek. She raised tear-stained fingers to her eyes and marvelled at the wetness like she'd never seen anything quite like it before.
“...Why does feeling joy bring tears to my eyes?”
Throughout their whole exchange after Aurora had repelled the psychic attack a whirring sound could be heard faintly, like electrically driven machinery being operated in the distance. Faint as it was however, the sound was deep as if the machinery being operated was quite enormous in size. The sound was all but gone by the time Aprella had spoken.
She slowly rose to her feet and wiped her eyes clean while looking around them once more, trying to remember where they were headed before her incident. Her mind was not yet fully clear and she found herself remembering the sensation of some foreign consciousness invading her mind. The trace left in its wake left an oddly familiar sensation but she could not quite place its source yet. All the information in the data bank of her suit could not help identify what was little more than a feeling or a hunch. She was beginning to wonder whether there was something wrong with her and making her act so impulsively.
“I get the feeling something doesn't want us here. Especially me.”
Aprella continued onwards through the door they had entered and her bubbly demeanour seemed vastly subdued – almost being murdered would do that to you. In fact she seemed almost serious.
As both women made their way beyond the deserted reception area they were greeted by immense blast doors that seemed to allow entrance into the main city. If not for the absence of palisades it seemed almost like an outlandish gateway to some medieval bastion. There was a stark difference in the quality of the reception area and the vast space that opened up beyond the door. Whereas the chambers they had traversed thus far were bright and sterile, the landscape before them was grim and blackened as if nobody had been there to wash the walls or repair the lights in decades. In fact everything pointed to the blast doors having been sealed until very recently.
They continued further ahead amidst dark alleys and run-down, deserted apartment buildings that had began to erode into debris. Everywhere around them lay piles of discarded junk and garbage – remnants of a technological consumerist society that had gone astray. Blackness covered everything from the mangled metal pieces to the masses of electronic trash and shredded wires.
Eventually they managed to make their way out of the abandoned slums and found themselves walking out into light. Their journey had brought them only slightly into the domed city and as they exited the last of the alleys they found themselves into the vast open area beneath the glass dome. They were just at the periphery of the city and in the distance innumerable spires and towers rose as if trying to escape their domed constraints, the tallest of them in the middle surrounding a colossal structure which seemed to support the centre of the dome. The main city seemed to lack the decay and decrepitude of the slums – in appearance at least – and in the distance people and vehicles could be made out. Unbeknownst to our two travellers, the great blast doors they had walked through were once again closing.
"It's disgusting. They killed their world and proceeded to cram all the people they could into a bubble. Appy, please stay close to me. I'm hiding you inside my aura so the enemy can't find you. The further you wander the thinner my aura is stretched and the more will come through. The air, the emotion, the sheer volume of people I can scarcely hear myself think." Wave after wave of nausea swept over her as she tried to push the psychic noise to the back of her mind.
"You probably understand this place a good deal better than I. We need to figure out where we are and how this world got in such a state, so I can figure out why I was sent here, so I can get out of here before it kills me. How do we find a library or something?"