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With This Ring (Young Justice SI) (Thread Fourteen)

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by Mr Zoat, Jan 27, 2019.

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  1. Vaermina

    Vaermina Well worn.

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    Eris probably would have been super useful against the Anti Life given it was Order based and she represents Chaos.
     
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  2. Ngamer11

    Ngamer11 Experienced.

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    The Anti-Life was useable against gods, so she would've been infected if she exposed herself to it.
     
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  3. Vaermina

    Vaermina Well worn.

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    Maybe.

    But Anti Life can't infect Freedom, and Freedom is a subset of Chaos.
     
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  4. Ngamer11

    Ngamer11 Experienced.

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    Yes it can. We've seen it infect Mister Miracle.
     
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  5. Vaermina

    Vaermina Well worn.

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    No, it tried to. Its didn't succeed. In attaching itself to him.
     
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  6. Ngamer11

    Ngamer11 Experienced.

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    It was succeeding until Paul interrupted it with Doctor Mist's help.
     
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  7. Vaermina

    Vaermina Well worn.

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    Doctor Mist directly stated it was trying, not succeeding.

    As far as we know, Mist just accelerated the process of Scott shrugging it off.
     
  8. Ngamer11

    Ngamer11 Experienced.

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    It seemed like what Doctor Mist was doing either wasn't helping or making it worse.
     
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  9. Threadmarks: Reconstruction (part 10)
    Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    5th March 2013
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    Dorian's feathers look pretty dirty as he mantles himself and tries to press himself backwards into the wall.

    "Dorian?"

    "Leave me."

    "I'm afraid that I won't be doing that. Your sister only gave me a vague idea of what happened."

    "Daphne should not waste her time. What I did was unforgivable."

    "Since she appears to have forgiven you, I'd say that you're factually wrong-."

    "She hasn't forgiven me, she just lies to herself about what happened."

    "Alright, ah…" I nod. "Why don’t you tell me what happened?"

    "Everyone else on the island rejected the evil voice. I was the only one who listened. The only one who it… It made sense to."

    "That might be the case around here, but on the mainland a lot of people went with it."

    Though it raises the question of what's different about him.

    "But I am not from the mainland. I am from here." He's spiralling. "None of my people-."

    "So what's different about you? What is it that you do that the others don't?"

    He shuffles awkwardly. "I look-. I was interested in the human ships."

    "Okay?"

    "Even before… Before you visited, I used to fly over to look at them when they were sailing nearby. I was probably the reason why they kept coming."

    "Did you actually land on any of the ships?"

    "I-. It-. No. I flew over them, or landed on a rock and watched them. It wasn't-. I was the first of us to land on the ship we stole. And after that I flew over to any ship that was in the area. I liked talking to the people-. Even if I couldn't understand them."

    "Ah."

    "Was that it, then? Was I wrong to do that?"

    "No, but-. The Anti-Life has larger effects on people who aren't… Moored. Most harpies don't know other ways of life. But you saw a lot more."

    He looks directly at me for the first time.

    "So it was my fault."

    "No, you just-. You were unlucky. Different people think in different ways, and you had the bad luck to encounter something that your way of thinking made you more vulnerable to. What did it tell you?"

    His wings relax slightly. "The.. evil voice?"

    "Yes."

    "It didn't-. Tell me, it-."

    "I understand. I heard it too. It's more like it's your own thoughts coming back at you. Things you don't like thinking about-."

    "But you know that it's true. Yes, it was-. I… I said…"

    He starts shrinking back in on himself.

    "Please. Tell me."

    "My own voice told me that I wanted to learn about humans because I recognised that we had done nothing for three thousand years. We live on the same island as our ancestors, we do the same things, tell the same stories, and nothing changes and nothing will until one day the humans will destroy us and it will probably be by accident. We rely on the fish, and they nearly drove them off without realising that we rely on them. There was no malice, but the big boat they use to sail around for fun did that. And-. And once they were no more able to make things than we are, but now they make things that we cannot imagine. That we physically cannot make."

    His wings are fully drooping, his muscles relaxed.

    "They will always become more than they are, and we… We may as well not exist."

    "Mm. Yeah. Honestly, I'd go crazy living on an island this this."

    "What?"

    "What did you expect me to say? Just put it out of your head and stop thinking about it? It's not that simple. We both know that. What has been learned cannot be unlearned. The white light might have gotten the evil voice out of your head but you still know what you know."

    "So, what? I just stay in this cave until I die?"

    "What were you planning on doing?"

    "I don't know! I don't.. know. It's like there's something missing in me, and I can't-. I don't know."

    "Okay. So if you've got no real idea, any idea's better than what you're doing now. Right?"

    "I-I don't know." … "Yes."

    "We found the man who did it." His eyes widen. "He was a bandit chief trying to get weapons that would let him steal better. He made a pact with a god, and that god's magic gradually took him over."

    "What happened to him?"

    "The white light freed him too. So we put him to work as a wagoner."

    "But he-. He did-."

    "He didn't mean to, and the god's magic overwhelmed him. We could punish him, but he genuinely hates what he did and wants to make up for it. So we put him to work."

    "Oh."

    "If you did anything while you were under the influence? Whatever it was, it can't have been as much as him."

    "No, I-. I stole-. I tried to steal a boat. The humans on it were-. They didn't seem to know what they were doing. I learned enough New Greek to give them some orders and they… Often, they obeyed. That was something else the voice said was normal."

    "The strong give orders, the weak obey them."

    "We don’t obey our elders because they are stronger than us, we obey them because they know more, they have more experience. Because they care for our community-. I was so sure I was right. A-and I want to say I wasn't, but…"

    "I have a suggestion. Come with me. I'll put you to work fixing things, and you can see some of the drawbacks of human civilisation. Once you know a bit more, you can have a think about whether you think your people need to change the way they live or not."

    "That would be too arrogant of me."

    "Have any of the elders ever been to mainland Greece?"

    "I…" He frowns thoughtfully. "Think that Iolus did once."

    "For long enough to learn how their society worked?"

    "No."

    "Then you'll know something that they don't, even if all you do is tell them about it. So how about it?"
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2023
  10. Ngamer11

    Ngamer11 Experienced.

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    That's a good way to simplify Mannheim's situation to someone like Dorian.

    Good to know he genuinely regrets what he did. Now I'm curious as to what happened to the rest of Intergang. Are they all dead? Are they still criminals?

    It's nice that Paul is helping this guy out with what he experienced. The little things like this may seem the most insignificant, but they still matter.
     
  11. KenNM

    KenNM Actually 22

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    It’s also a nice bit when you remember that aside from the well-being of his loved ones, Paul genuinely can’t empathize with the thought of using his powers to help individuals rather than as many people as possible.

    Taking time to console and help one person, in spite of arguably how valuable his time is in the rebuilding. It might not be the most efficient use of time from a utilitarian perspective, but it’s still a life helped rather than some abstract “big number”.

    I admit to being very curious about what’ll happen to Dorian, I mean, fundamentally Paul absolutely agrees that the harpies’ continued stagnation is not an optimal situation and they need to gradually open up and reconnect with the outside world.

    Wait..I just had a funny thought, Dorian’s basically their Diana and Paul’s the Steve, they languished about the same monotony and after a tragedy is engulfing the world, this outsider is offering to show them the world XD.
     
  12. Chojin Patriarch

    Chojin Patriarch Veteran Lurker

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    No can do, friend. Your sister pushed herself hard getting to Themyscira's location looking for help for you. So I hope you'll excuse OL if he doesn't just take 'Go away' for an answer. :p

    We still don't know what he did. I'm sure what seems onerous and monstrous to him may well be something simple to OL.

    I don't know, exhausting herself trying to get help doesn't sound like lying to herself.

    Is that all? Kid, thousands of millions of humans did the same thing.

    Indeed. What makes him different? What experiences did he have that gave the Anti-Life a foothold?

    Ah, OL. Direct as usual. Just ripping the plaster off.

    Nothing wrong with that, I suppose. Everyone needs a hobby.

    Would give an interesting spin on the situation that led to him first meeting the harpies...

    A curious little man-bird. I'll bet the people he visited with were excited about it too.

    It opens up places in the mind for it to attach to. Dissatisfaction. Longing. A secret desire for something else.

    No, it just means you had... An interest outside the life you lived. Great things have come from less.

    Since even if it was a single fragment, every person would have interpreted it differently.

    That's what makes it so insidious, after all. The things it tells you aren't that different from things you might think deep down. It pushes them further, says them louder than you can ignore...

    If nothing else, talking about it will pull those things into the light, where you can see them for the petty, pointless ideas they are.

    Stasis through contentment and laziness. And a jealousy of those that were not trapped by it. Understandable.

    But it can be overcome. Change can come to any community, though not without risk.

    Some people just have certain drives. Some good, some bad. It's up to them how they use those drives.

    Pfft. Boring. No, i suspect OL's offering a different possibility.

    Kind of a typical teenage feeling, really. That moment when you realise you don't know what to do with your life, and the fear that everything thus far has been a waste of time...

    Sitting around won't change anything. Movement is what you need. Doing something you want to do, not what the Anti-Life told you to do.

    A grossly simplified version of the backstory, but I suppose those terms are easier for Dorian to understand. After all, how often has messing around with a god's stuff worked out well in myths?

    No, the Anti-Life did it. It's Master did it through him. Like a rock cracking an oyster. Do you blame the tool or the hand wielding it?

    And if he could do that, then why not you? Which means you can make up for anything you did, too.

    Since the harpies would speak an old Hellenic tongue rather than modern Greek.

    That was the Anti-Life doing the thinking for you, kid. That's what it does, making things like that seem perfectly reasonable.

    A single voice can change minds. And sometimes that's all that's needed to change a culture.

    Surprising. I assume that was a courtesy visit following the cruise liner thing.

    Certainly, you can be famous for generations as the one that saw the world. Who knows perhaps other young harpies will go on to follow in your... Footsteps?

    If nothing else, his tales may well lead to the harpies being more outgoing. Who knows, perhaps the harpies will one day expand beyond their islands and find places to live on the mainland. As it is, as Dorian said, one change in the fish population could wipe them out. But even if no-one decides to follow his example, at least he'll make the effort to seek out change. And that alone is a powerful choice.
     
  13. Duke Long

    Duke Long Glomerulus

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    ’ships’?
     
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  14. Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    Thank you, corrected.
     
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  15. Darko

    Darko Connoisseur.

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    Well we know he has a thing for arachnids.

    It's not that much of a stretch that he'd have a thing for avians.
     
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  16. Coda

    Coda Versed in the lewd.

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    He's not been particularly enamored with the Thanagarians he's met.
     
  17. DougA

    DougA Getting out there.

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    Wingbeats?
     
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  18. Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    There's a scaly coming up, if that's any help?
     
  19. KenNM

    KenNM Actually 22

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    On the other hand, Kon's arguably OL's most intense emotional connection (admittedly I still ship him and OL than Cheshire) which started because OL felt the need to help him.

    But OL did admit he liked being needed, it's hard to feel too attached to someone already self sufficient. Dorian's gonna be entering a new, and unfamiliar world. One just barely passed a big tragedy and rebuilding and will need OL's help to acclimate every step of the way.
     
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  20. Threadmarks: Reconstruction (part 11)
    Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    5th March 2013
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    "Dorian!"

    The female harpy-. I should have asked her-

    "H-hello Maia."

    -what her name was. She flap-hops over to hug him, nose wrinkling only briefly at the smell.

    "If you like, I can fix your feathers."

    He makes eye contact with me over his sister's shoulders. "Yes. Please."

    Okay, scan his sister so that I know what feathers look like when they're in good condition, then remove whatever dust, skin cells, sweat and other detritus has accumulated on his body, remembering that feathers need oil. Okay, that-.

    Maia pulls away slightly as the orange wave finishes its work, sniffing curiously. Dorian frowns and sniffs his right wing. They make eye contact, and Maia laughs.

    "It's better!"

    Dorian ruffles his feathers and then steps past her. "I will-. Please tell our parents that I am leaving the island for a while."

    "But-."

    "I will be coming back once my head is clear. But I.. need to leave for now."

    She nods.

    "Don't worry, he's in good hands." I turn to Dorian as I rise into the air. "Shall we?"

    He flaps his wings, rapidly gaining height as he rises off the cliff.

    "Where are you going?"

    "The Themysciran embassy in New York is still there, and the staff both speak Ancient Greek and know how to introduce people from the Greek mythos to modernity. But first we're going to spend a few hours doing a search of the area. The Greek government is concerned that without Themyscira around some other peoples might start getting rowdy."

    "You should check on the sirens. I do not know if they are actually doing anything, but they had very bad habits in the past."

    I nod. Despite some depictions showing them mermaids -and the notably weird one in Ducktails where they're giant angler fish lures, the sirens are actually demi-god harpies. A bit larger, a bit stronger, much longer lived and possessing a knack for manipulating the air to create entrancing sound. Diana wasn’t entirely sure if the hypnotic element was inherently magical or if the hypnosis was just the result of exposing the human brain to that noise. Ancient Greeks didn't really distinguish between magic and feats of extreme skill.

    I wonder what they'd think of Werner Vertigo's device? Wouldn't hurt to show them a copy.

    "Are they still living on the same island?" Maia nods. "Then that's our first stop. Thank you."

    I transition upwards, pulling level with Dorian.

    "You sister wants us to look in on the sirens. Are you alright with doing that, or would you rather wait while I handle it?"

    "I will come. They are less likely to be violent if I am with you."

    "Rightoh. You may experience a moment of disorientation as we appear near their island."

    He nods, continuing to flap. I attach a filament and-.

    And we're there. What was once a series of small rocks sticking out of the ocean but is now a siren-made island of wood taken from wrecked ships. The sea is fairly shallow, strong currents easily able to smash a ship into the barely-submerged rocks.

    Huh. So maybe the harpies could have built that jetty. It wouldn't have been easy, but the main issue would be getting the metal ore to make the saws-.

    They're mind control specialists. They could just have gotten the surviving crew to build things before they ate them.

    Not a lot of metal. Their action in grabbing a British ship during World War Two was what led to their first confrontation with Diana, and after that… No fibreglass either, so I suppose that they're behaving themselves. Scans show nothing, because they've had plenty of time to ward this place.

    "Hello!"

    "WHAT?!"

    That.. was interesting. The air around me trembled, but there wasn't any entrancing property. And the air between me and the island didn't vibrate, so she wasn't just shouting.

    "I said, 'hello'!"

    The door of a structure that looks like a cabin that was ripped wholesale from the deck of a eighteenth century warship opens, and a somewhat dishevelled siren stalks out.

    Though when I say dishevelled… That's a t-shirt. A printed t-shirt, long enough to serve as a nightie. Harpies don't bother with clothing. Their island is too small for raising wool animals or planting cotton, and their feathers cover… Well, the essentials.

    "And I said 'what'?" She rubs her eyes with her wings. "I'm still on American time. What do you want?"

    "To.. check that you were in good physical and psychological health."

    She blinks up at me. "Yeah?"

    "And your sisters?"

    "Probably? They're all-. Wait." She appears to become more alert. "Do you think we all live here?"

    "I hadn't researched the topic in detail, I just… assumed so."

    "We don't-. Get down here." Dorian flies down at once, and I follow a moment later. Is that… Mascara? And lipstick? "We don’t live here. After our fight with Diana, it didn't take us long to realise that the world had gotten a lot more interesting. So we talked about it, and then we went on a journey."

    "Just… Wandering around, seeing the sights?"

    "We paid our way by singing. Not hypnotic singing, just the regular kind. And it was a lot better than living on a pile of rotting wood."

    "So… Why are you here?"

    Her talons clench, gouging a furrow in the wood.

    "That Anti-Life stuff-. They tried to make us sing it. It-." She ruffles her feathers. "I wanted to sleep somewhere familiar." She looks around. "But it turns out a mouldy pile of wood is a mouldy pile of wood. Next time I'm going to the Hilton."

    "And please understand that I'm only asking this at the request of the Greek government-."

    "We're not entrancing anyone-. Not ships, anyway. Not to wreck them. Once the music industry starts up again, we'll be back to work. But if you're looking for someone who isn't doing so great, I saw some statues of people on the mainland that-" She points. "-way."

    "Greece does have a lot of stat-."

    "As in petrified people. I think one of the gorgons is on the run again."

    I nod. "Thank you for that information. Is there anything you need?"

    "How fast are the banks going to be working again?"

    "We're not prioritising it, so maybe a few months if you're talking about anything beyond local banking? Though if you and your sisters are interested in a commission, I could probably sort something out."

    "I'll talk to them about it. You're with the Justice League, right?" I nod. "And who's the mute?"

    "I'm Dorian."

    "And why is the mute?"

    "He got hit hard by the Anti-Life, and wants to see society outside of the islands."

    "I can do that. My sisters and I can teach you modern human languages, show you around. How about it?"

    Dorian looks at me for confirmation, and I just shrug. His choice. They've probably got cultural knowledge and time that I don't, but if he's reluctant then I'll do it.

    He thinks for a moment, then nods. "Thank you."
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2023
  21. Darko

    Darko Connoisseur.

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    "nod"

    It can make sense thematically.

    The supposed beautiful thing is in reality a monster.

    Let's not give the potential mind-controlling monsters any new toys.

    Maybe they've wised up.

    You know, if any of them are interested in going back to their roots and destroying people with their singing then I'm now picturing them entrancing fans with their music until the fans leave everything behind to follow them.

    "interested"

    Hmm, maybe their singing could help people still suffering, like Dorian.

    Music therapy.
     
  22. Bud-E

    Bud-E Stand up so I can push you down!

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    I like the Siren I hope we see more of them in the future:)
     
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  23. KenNM

    KenNM Actually 22

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    Huh, nice surprise.

    I actually like that bit. The sirens realized the world's changed and adapted because it'd benefit them and break the monotony.

    Staying stagnated when you've got an idllyic island separate from the world makes sense. Not so much when the only entertainment is making ships wreck themselves while staying on a crappy hunk of rock.
     
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  24. Chojin Patriarch

    Chojin Patriarch Veteran Lurker

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    Ah, now for some deserved sisterly hugs, and then a bap around the ear or similar for making her worry. I do hope he plans to say goodbye to his family before he heads off, though. It's the least they deserve.

    I'm guessing it's been a few days since he's bothered to preen himself.

    Nothing like a Power Ring to give someone a good deep clean.

    And nothing like a good shower (or the equivalent) to help shake off a funk.

    ...Aw, you haven't the heart to tell them yourself? I suppose he can only make so much progress with a quick pep-talk from OL...

    Ah, good... I hope she can explain it to their family.

    Hopefully OL doesn't expect him to fly by himself to wherever he plans to take Dorian. Still, it helps to see that he can get about fine.

    Since the waters around it would have been a safe haven for mythological beings of the Hellenic region.

    Really, the mermaid interpretations were kind of iffy. Mythologically, they were more like harpies than merfolk. Kind of a different strain, with a different vocal talent.

    Ooh, that'd be trippy. Still, better to get a handle on their character before you go doing that.

    Eh, I'd go. It's good to get to know your neighbours, after all. And if he hangs around here, he might get some visitors he's not in a mood to see right now.

    Yet another first time transition. It's getting to be a bit of a theme these days. :p

    A bit more industrious than their harpy cousins, I see...

    ...Or the sirens are just very good at leveraging their talents, yes. That would probably have been the easiest method.

    To be fair, for all we know, Diana looks in on them occasionally, given their historical reputation.

    Remote speech in some form. Likely a rarely-used trick they possess.

    Ah, good, there's someone home. I assume she was the one to reply.

    Huh. How worldly. I do like the image of a woman-bird in a T-shirt. :p Sounds cute.

    Well, there was a whole thing the last couple of months, dear. Surely you noticed? ;)

    ...I mean, I'm sure it's a big island?

    ...Huh. I'm guessing they had some manner of illusion or shapeshifting magic to hide their... More exotic features.

    Well, that's a bit more impressive than the harpies, I suppose.

    Seeking a familiar place, perhaps, during the Anti-Life event? A safe place to hide...

    Ouch. No wonder she sought out home. I have to wonder what the other sirens have been up to, though.

    ...Wait, Statues of what?

    ...Ah. Stheno or Euryale, I wonder? Given that Medusa is still dead, most likely. The joy of her being the only mortal sister, though there were 'Wonder Woman' stories involving her revival now and again.

    Because hotel stays are expensive, and with money being unstable, it could prove very costly...

    ...I wonder, have there ever been any harpy-siren relationships before? x3 I mean, I don't expect these two to hook up, but there must have been some...

    Which may get a little sidetracked as OL goes on a whistle-stop tour of Hellenic Mythology...

    Well, that's one thing less for OL to have to deal with, I guess.

    So, then. A Gorgon going about on the mainland? That's quite a bit more dangerous than the harpies or sirens playing up. Sounds like finding her or them just became OL's top priority. At least their petrifying powers aren't likely to trouble him, with all the sensory options of a power ring. And I hope we get to see something of Dorian and the sirens later. Shame to lose such an interesting character at this point...


    "And why is he mute?"
     
  25. BR549

    BR549 This is filth! FILTH!!

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    Isn't that basically what the Equestria Girls sirens were up to, more or less?
     
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  26. Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    Thank you, corrected.
     
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  27. Darko

    Darko Connoisseur.

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    Yeah, mermaids would probably be very, very different compared to the Little Mermaid.

    Or they just played it off as some eccentric makeup and style.

    They're Greek mythological beings.

    It would probably be easier to list the things they haven't had relationships with.
     
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  28. ForeverShogo

    ForeverShogo Not too sore, are you?

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    Interesting. I mean, sure, basically being a different kind of harpy is more mythologically accurate. But I don't think that's how DC chose to portray them. They either looked like normal, blonde women or sea serpent style mermaids from what I remember.

    The blonde ones got turned into trees by Aphrodite. Wonder Woman kicked the serpentine mermaid one's ass, but it's revealed all the siren did was fuck off to Norway to kill fishermen there instead of targeting Greek fishermen.

    Put it in spoilers because it's kind of big, but here's an image showing the mermaid style one off. Well, its human looking half anyways.

    [​IMG]

    But that aside . . . Uh . . . Good on these sirens for not being evil anymore.
     
  29. Stsword

    Stsword Versed in the lewd.

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    Siren of Vandal Savage's anti-Titans Tartarus is a hypnotic, green mermaid.

    According to the wikipedias, her origins purportedly lie in the Loa and not Grecian mythology.
     
  30. gattsuru

    gattsuru Getting out there.

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    … Did OL just make a male harpy smell like his sister, and then drop him off to go globehopping with some eligible bachelorette demigods?

    I guess that’s one way to get demidemigod harpies.
     
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