A Multifandom Asylum RPG

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Day 48: Cafeteria (Breakfast)
should_be_dead wrote in damned
Luckily for Mele, the night had ended before Tenzen had changed his mind and deemed Mele appropriate for target practice. Even if the situation of who was mocking who had seemed to change into the Iga ninja's favor. Despite her behavior, perhaps the insolent woman could serve some sort of use nonetheless. He had been trapped in this place for a week by now, he would not accomplish anything on his own.

A week was a long time, a lot could have happened. Of course, he was thinking of the war, the bloody clash of two rivaling ninja clans, whose hatred had gone back for four hundred years. After that infuriating peace treaty had been broken, he, too, could finally release the hatred. And despite their losses, Tenzen had been certain that the Iga clan - no, that he would be the one to remain standing.

Four had remained on both sides a week ago...had the remaining Kouga already been killed? Or had they somehow succeeded in disposing of the remaining three Iga (excluding himself) during his absence? Of those three, two were blind. The situation was not a favorable one, and with himself trapped here before he could return from death, he had to wonder if the Kouga had removed the name 'Yakushiji Tenzen' from the scroll and would believe they had eliminated all of Iga's chosen ten.

The thought - along with no manner of telling this - was enough to make his jaw tighten. The longer he would remain here...

But as unfuriating as it was, it would not help him return. After confirming the presence of the scalpels he had retrieved, a nurse entered his room to escort him to the cafeteria for ridiculous Western breakfast. Unfortunately, the same ridiculous food was the only source of nutrition.

Upon entering, the ninja noticed he was the first to arrive to the area. After deciding on a salad rather than these so-called 'pancakes', he moved to one of the many vacant seats.

[Free to a good home. No limits!]

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Scar knew as soon as he lay eyes upon the white ceiling above him that another night had been wasted. Apparently, one night of an interesting discovery must be compensated by a set amount of time wasted. The length of such wasted time possibly depended on the worth of the discovery itself. Two nights and a day in a row right now. The head doctor still possessed his infuriating sense of humor, it would seem.

As if they had some instinct on determining whether a patient was ready to leave for the cafeteria or not, the nurse entered his room right after Scar had managed to stash away what little items he had. And despite the fact he had the ordeal of 'consuming human excuses for food' to look forward to, his stomach growled. He had not eaten at all yesterday; being hungry was only natural despite the questionable nature of his meals.

As Scar finally entered the cafeteria, he did find something that remotely resembled meat, and seemed to be somewhat edible. Unfortunately, the nurse wouldn't leave him alone if he didn't at least take an 'apple' with him before finding an empty seat. With a roll of his eyes the former lion ended up taking the infuriating piece of fruit with him, only to ignore it for the duration of the meal shift. Next they were trying to offer him those silly leaves. What did they think he was, a giraffe?

At the very least, she hadn't dragged him over to a random stranger and allowed him to pick a seat on his own. Granted, it was still fairly early judging by the amount of patients that had already entered.

[For the Scarecrow!]

It seemed like he blinked, and the Scarecrow found himself in bed again, as if he'd never been in the Chapel at all. He stayed still a moment, staring at the ceiling, reveling in the fact that he could feel the bed beneath him, the sheets around his hands, the low thumping in his head reminding him that there was a wound there. He closed his eyes again- his conversation with Abe had made it apparent that he had a lot of thinking to do.

The Wizard Landel brought people from all sorts of places to the Institute, but for what reason? It seemed he wanted to observe some and experiment on others, but what determined which patients would be treated which way? And why was it some people were sent home while others remained? Were those who were sent home really returned, or were they simply released from the Institute's walls, their minds tricked into thinking their entire lives had been some sort of a dream? Was that what happened to Dorothy?

The most unsettling questions were the ones about himself that had arisen since his arrival: was this torture, or some sort of a blessing in disguise? The answer should have been an easy choice. He would go home if he could, right? Now that he knew he could die, he couldn't help but wonder what would happen if he expired before finding out the answers he wanted.

He shook his head- thinking like that got him nowhere. He had to assume the Dorothy he'd met was the real Dorothy, and that she needed his help. He couldn't leave or die until he'd accomplished at least that much. Now, Abe had said there were a lot of events that could kill a human man. Most of them had slipped the Scarecrow's mind already- the fact that moments before they were listed to him he realized that he actually could die was probably the culprit- but he was aware he needed to tread the Institute with more caution from now on. He wasn't made of straw and rags anymore- fixing himself wasn't as easy as finding some new straw and putting himself back together again. Avoiding the Horrible Hallway, if he could help it, was going to be his first choice.

The Scarecrow's thoughts continued as his nurse fetched him and led him through the Sun Room and into the Cafeteria, stacking his tray with a variety of food before sending him to find an empty seat. He noticed it immediately while looking around the room, though he should have thought of it before- no feeling in his hands, that lighter feel of his body that set him oddly off balance. It seemed the clever little thing was already hard at work. Maybe if he took his mind off it, the time would pass more quickly and he'd have his sensations back before the shift was over. He smiled as his eyes landed on a familiar face.

He took a seat opposite of the former lion. "G'morning, Scar. It seems like ages since we've spoken, doesn't it?"

Scar had been in the middle of (making attempts at) eating one of these so-called sausages - they were a far cry of the sort of food he was used to, unsurprisingly - when someone took the seat opposite of him. Curiously enough not someone dragged over by a nurse, but actually a familiar face. This was the man that had said to be a scarecrow, wasn't he? Hnn.

"Good morning", the former lion said after swallowing. Despite his annoyance at both the food and the way the night had been spent, he could manage a polite facade well enough. "About a week, I suppose."

Even though it might as well have been several moons. Then again, shower shifts were usually preferred to be forgotten...

"Has it really been that long?" the Scarecrow asked in genuine surprise. Maybe he'd been trapped longer than he thought- it seemed so strange he'd not noticed. He ran a hand through his hair idly, realizing only after that he'd probably run his hand straight over his wound. It was one of those rare times he was thankful he couldn't feel anything. What was it that set the clever little thing off? It seemed it occurred a lot in the Chapel the night before, usually when he was putting a lot of thought into--

His train of thought stopped abruptly as realization hit him. Thinking! It seemed so obvious- it activated whenever he started really putting a lot of effort into his thoughts. That was a troubling notion, and certainly something the Wizard Landel would have planned intentionally, knowing the Scarecrow was a thinking sort of fellow. He was sure that had to be the cause, but couldn't test his theory until his senses came back. In that case, he needed to stop thinking and get back to the conversation. He was only making it worse!

"So," he said as he took his utensils in hand, quickly trying to think of something to say not involving brains or the clever little thing, "How was your evening?"

"Apparently," Scar added dryly. Or at least he thought it had been a week, but it was becoming rather difficult to keep track of time in this place. Well, he supposed it hardly mattered either way.

He took another bite from his sausage in the mean time, not certain if he was eating this 'correctly' as most individuals were apparently content with these so-called 'pancakes'. He had figured those required utensils, but the sausages? Even after remaining here for a period that was most certainly much too long, he could not quite tell, so he ended up trying to eat them with 'his' hands.

Well, it wasn't like he was actually trying to get used to all this...

"Rather useless," he answered to the Scarecrow's question, and took this as an invitation to complain about the head doctor's sense of humor; "I had barely left my room before ending up back inside again because the night had ended, possibly for the sole reason that the head doctor considers such things entertaining." He couldn't quite keep the annoyance from his voice as he spoke.

Time flies when having fun, but this was ridiculous. Not to mention that there was hardly anything fun about this place to begin with.

"Funny you mention Wizard Landel's particular interests," the Scarecrow noted, carefully cutting his pancakes into neat squares. "I was talking with Abe- a friend of mine- about something along those lines just last night, about possible reasons why we were brought here, why some of us had to be put into human forms, that sort of thing."

The Scarecrow shook his head, stopping himself before taking a bite of pancake- it probably wasn't a good idea to eat with his condition. He was sure he was probably hungry, too. "Most of it doesn't make sense. Why would he bring us here and take what we were from us? If it was to make us all alike and easier to control that way, then he's not really observin' us as we would normally be. I can't figure out what the Wizard Landel is getting out of bringing us here. He's got to be gaining something of value, if he's willing to go to all this trouble."

Ah, so the Scarecrow knew Abe as well? My, Landels was such a small world, wasn't it? "I see," Scar said. Well, the subject was at least an interesting one.

Odd thing to name the head doctor as well.

"Half of the problem would be solved if only we'd know why we're here," Scar said before pausing, taking another bite from his meal while considering what to say next. He was never too keen on handing out information if he couldn't regain anything in return, but then again, this was most likely well known enough. Hmm, perhaps something could come of it by merely mentioning this.

"You know when Landel had been considered dead and some voice belonging to I.R.I.S. had temporarily replaced him? She certainly mentioned some odd things."

"That was peculiar," the Scarecrow said, thinking. He'd put those evenings in the back of his mind, his thoughts almost always preoccupied by something else. It wasn't hard to find other things to worry about, being a scarecrow in a strange body in a world unlike his own, trapped in a place with several fascinating individuals, and concerned that one of his closest friends had been here before and was now bewitched in some way and out of his reach. The clever little thing the doctor had put into his brain was another matter entirely.

Still, now that he thought about it, that time certainly had been strange. "I wonder where he could have gone during that time. I can't imagine any one of us managed to find and threaten him. I've yet to meet anyone who even knows if the third floor is any more than a rumor, so I figure he's hidden up there somewhere, if it's there at all. That's what Abe and I were looking for last night, but we ended up trapped in this chapel room with a strange fountain."

"If he is in this building to begin with," Scar answered. "Either way, I doubt it had been one of the patients that had attacked him." Though he had no idea why he and von Karma had been among the few to have been transported back to the institute, he had heard the intercom announcement late in the night. It had sounded like the head doctor had been attacked by one of those animated corpses. "It certainly hadn't been enough to kill him. His absence could be easily related to injuries of some sort."

And it would seem Abe was still looking for that third floor. As for the chapel, well, he had only visited it once during the day. "...a strange fountain?"

The Scarecrow nodded. "On the second floor, in this large room past the main hallway that overlooks the Sun Room. There's some sort of a statue at the end of the room with a fountain beneath. I don't know what kind of creature the statue was supposed to be, but it didn't look friendly. The font has got something other than water flowing through it. There's also a strange panel in the floor that I was warned not to touch, in case it set off some sort of trap. There was an inscription near that, but I didn't get a good look at it.

"Abe's a professional in these sorts of things, and even he wasn't entirely sure what it was, though he concluded it couldn't be good. I don't suppose you've heard anything about it, then?"

"Not anything good? Gee, I'm surprised," Scar said dryly, sarcasm rather obvious in his voice. But judging from the description, it hardly sounded like anything placed to aid the patients. Not too surprising considering where they were.

"I do know where this place they call the chapel is," Scar pointed out before continuing. "I don't recall a fountain there, however..." Or the human variation thereof, as they enjoyed changing everything and it hardly sounded as if it was some regular spray of water. This one did not even involve water, it would seem. Well, perhaps they had added it later; he could hardly be called a frequent visitor of that place.

"I don't suppose you know what sort of thing did run through it, other than water that is?"

The Scarecrow shook his head. He couldn't recall whether or not Abe had said exactly what it was that was flowing through the fountain. The strawman was sure he'd seen it before, but couldn't put his finger on where. "Abe thought it was maybe for some sort of ritual or sacrifice. I wondered if it might be a source of power for the Wizard Landel's magic. He's got to be awful powerful if he can put us all to sleep each night without anyone seeing hide nor hair of him."

Slowly, but surely, the Scarecrow could feel his senses coming back- they were dulled at first, but better than nothing at all. He took a couple of bites, disappointed that he still seemed to be lacking his sense of taste. Well, flavorful or not, he had to eat something. Taking care of his human form needed to be a priority from now on.

"So you've been there before, but there wasn't a fountain there?" the Scarecrow asked, curious. Could it be that the strange statue only appeared at night, when the Institute changed?

"I suppose the easiest way to find out is for someone to stand on that panel and see what happens," Scar said with a shrug. "I wouldn't be surprised if some poor fools have already done so, in any case." Which would mean that all you had to do was ask around. Well, he supposed not everyone had enough brain capacity to think of something so simple.

And if no one had? Well, all you had to do was convince someone dumb enough to try and stand on it. Pity Mozenrath had long since disappeared...

"Yes. That had been on my third day here, however, and I haven't visited it since" Scar said, "So I suppose it has either been added later or it appears only during the night." The latter seemed plausible. If it truly looked as the Scarecrow had described it, he had to wonder why those nurses would expose their fragile and unstable patients to something like that during the day.

The Scarecrow's brow furrowed as he put some serious thought into this: it was likely the fountain wasn't a recent addition and did actually appear only at night, given the rest of the changes that occurred during the twilight hours. The fact that going through the Horrible Hallway seemed to be the only way to access the chapel, combined with the witches and somethings that guarded the Horrible Hallway each night, made it even more likely that the fountain had some sort of special purpose. Oh, if only he'd investigated it more while he was there!

Still, how could he investigate it safely? Abe had warned him that the consequences could be dire, and his own prodding hadn't produced any results. "I really would like to find out what it does, though I don't know if there's a way to do it without causing harm to anyone. Abe warned me not to try it, though I can't help but wonder. I'm definitely going to ask around and see if anyone knows anything about it, and maybe head back there tonight to see what else I can learn. If it is a source of the Wizard Landel's power, it could give us an advantage if we can figure out how it works."

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