Cutscene: Drawing Dead: Liquid Negrocity

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East, Fate starts to make its turn. The keys to this world are placed in Kandori's hands. Will he be satisfied with what Aki can offer him? In his hands, a small mirror, the power of a God should he desire to wield it. There are still challenges ahead for the director, but will he be bored? That is what one of the uncertainties that makes Aki, also a deity, nervous. Should the power to control existence fall into their laps, even the collective unconciousness would bend to their will--and in bending to their will, be destroyed. But that was fine. A new world was always there for the making. As Aki relaxes in her Castle Mana, where once a hospital stood, filling it with demons--the second anxiety forces itself into her conciousness. A bunch of strangers, accepting her. Even if they were just lying because they knew she had the power, the lies were so sweet to hear. But they could not help her. Only Daddy could do that. He always was there for her. Always accepting her. Feeding her. She had the power she had now because of him, and so she graciously returned the dividends. It's how business worked. It was how farming worked. She wondered how long Maki would remain alive. Someone, she thought, though she would never say it. Save us. Please.

West, Hope remains. Even as Dark-O solidifies control over Rebellion HQ the true battle is not over space but Shiki Ichimonji's mind. Others seek to manipulate his mind in an attempt to reach the delicious prize within: The DVA system. Its power has been made apparent thanks to Shirou Sekigawa. With this, total world domination can be under anyone's control. With an unholy alliance between Dark-O and Aki, it seems impossible even to Mai that both worlds can be saved.

But, she reflected, she would have to be brave like Ritsue. That is why she gave the compact to her. What she didn't tell Ritsue is that it weakened her own power. Even now, within her gingerbread house, demons turned on her, Aki's minions scoured the forest searhcing for her. Cornered, with only Mr. Bear at her side, she reaches for a compact that is no longer there. Mr. Bear leaps out of her hands, enlarging to gigantic size. He stomps on several beasts, crushes a Yaksa, and hugs several others to death.

"Don't worry, Mai! I'll always be bear to save you!"

Mai contemplated fleeing but she knew she'd just be in a dead end if she tried. She could teleport, but she'd have to leave Mr. Bear behind. That was not acceptable. "No," She murmurs, a bow materializing in her hands. She snipes a demon thug in the eye. A Pyro Jack gets blasted apart with a torrent of ice and water, even as she calls out the name of her Persona. "Matsu! No more hiding! Ritsue... Sis..., they both have things they still have to do! They all do!"

In the subway, Ideal Maki hesitates. A few more steps she's in Aki's side, in Kandori's side. If she goes to the Harem Queen, she won't be able to escape until she saves Chisato. But on the other hand, she knew her true self lay with The Rebel. They had to be saved too! Either choice she made, she'd be leaving someone in danger. Was she ready to wake up? Not really. She could only imagine the pain she was causing the outside world.

What would Naoya say in this situation. Probably something wise. What was it he always used to say? "...Be your true mind..." Ideal Maki murmured to herself, imagining herself in his arms. He was once a punk, he made himself into someone better. And yet he was not here. She had to imagine his presence, talking to her.

"The others... I can trust them. And even if I was bad... I can get better! So no more moping!" Maki says, charging for the East Side stairs. "But someone has to free them, and Chisato too!"

Outside the barrier, Ambassador Thorman is gaining more and more ground to his nuclear option, something he may have put forth himself. The world outside must rely on Strega to make it to Mikage-Cho. Hope is growing dim. The bet deciding the fate of mankind may soon be over.

True Maki remains dormant, still unwilling to face the reality of herself, or the reality outside. The words of Iblis F. Disaster comfort her in her sleep.

And a dark heart behind a sealed door beats that much more quickly.

And much more quietly, half of a Compact shines.

Liquid Negrocity - Drawing Dead -

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