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so. let me paint you a picture here

They stand up from their uncomfortable-looking chair. Walking over to the empty canvas, the artist begins sketching some rudimentary shapes, vaguely resembling a walled-off city.

"There," they say, pointing to the cube that's clearly meant to be some sort of small building. "That's where we used to live."

Scene 1

Our likely protagonist lies in their bunk-bed, groggy but unable to fall asleep. The day had been one of many eventful ones in a row, leaving the entire squadron increasingly exhausted with every coming night.

Having fallen out of their bed (for context, they were on top, that can be misread), Mercuron decides to just give up on sleeping for the night. Absentmindedly they straggle towards the door. Blinded by the light of the street lamp placed right outside, they can barely make out the shadow of their squad member having a smoke out, with some liquor in his left hand.

DIALOGUE ENGAGE

Hyun: Ay, havink trouble sleeping, ay?

Merc: Ebisu almighty, how are you still drinking that shit at this hour?

Hyun: You'rr dodgin th' questin... hav trobl sleepink, ya?

Merc: ...Yes. Aren't you nervous about the shit that's been trying to break into the city? These things are like nothing I've ever seen before.

Hyun: WELL why'd'ya'nk tha I'm stillllll up a' this hours, y' ni'wit???

Merc: Ugh. Why do I even bother.

DIALOGUE END

Mercuron decides to go on a stroll throughout the city, falsely justifying it with "double-checking the place's security". They pass by a couple of residential lots, the local brewery and one of many war-oriented museums. The smell of decay and alcohol litters the air; mysterious stains and leaking trash bags litter the streets. Not many people are up at this time, just the ones who endlessly try to scrape together basic supplies needed to live, having only each other to steal from. The night here isn't particularly great when you're outdoors, so most well-off people tend to, well, not go outdoors at night. Mercuron starts to wonder what about this is lucrative and turns around, going back home.

Dazed by the slightly toxic air of the downtown, Mercuron finds trouble in walking in a straight line. They experience it as a strange sensation, kind of like being drunk without having had anything. Figures, depriving yourself of sleep tends to lower your natural defenses.

...

Mercuron has passed out on the sidewalk.

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