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After•LifeTopic%20Title
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Spoiler: Table of Contents

Spoiler: Cast
Southern Corn: Patrick Murphy
DootDootDoot: Edgar Gray
Joker: Kris T. Ian
WinterCoat: Maria Washington
Kachu: Light Stoutt
NIKI_4829: GUNS
Planetbox: Akari Atamanai
Franzise Deauxnim: Mai Nomiya
Doctor Nanjo: TV Head (Gertrude Cornell)

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"TO ANSWER SOME OF THE MOST COMMON QUESTIONS I GET, YES, YOU ARE DEAD."

A group of people, quite bewildered, took in their surroundings as they tried to figure out what was going on.

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"YES, THIS IS THE AFTERLIFE, OR AT LEAST, PART OF IT."

They appeared to be in some kind of... court room? But the floor beneath their feet was a black void, and the whole area was deserted apart from themselves.

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"NO, I WILL NOT DELETE YOUR BROWSING HISTORY FOR YOU."

The sonorous, yet chilling voice addressing them seemed to be coming from all around them, with no speaker in sight. All of a sudden though, an epic guitar riff began playing, and a cloaked guitarist steadily rose up from behind the judge's bench as though being raised on a moving platform. He was accompanied by smoke jetting out either side of him.

[Epic guitar: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D0xsTC-YImc]

The figure was, unmistakably, Death. He'd traded out his iconic scythe for a guitar, but there was no mistaking those bony features or that black cloak. He had glowing orbs where his eyes should be, piercing yet as bottomless as eternity, but in the smoke they looked more like sunglasses.

[Death: https://i.imgur.com/Su9OVy0.jpg]

He addressed the gathered crowd while continuing to play. Despite the shredding echoing in their ears, they could hear every word he intoned.

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"THE CIRCUMSTANCES HERE ARE UNUSUAL, THOUGH THERE IS NOTHING UNUSUAL ABOUT ANY OF YOU."
"TYPICALLY, WHEN A MORTAL DIES, THAT'S IT. THE END. NO 'TAKE-BACKSIES'."
"FOR THOSE GATHERED HERE, HOWEVER, I AM OFFERING A SECOND CHANCE."
"I AM, INDEED, DEATH. IT IS WITHIN MY POWER TO RESTORE YOU TO LIFE."
"I WILL HAVE YOU PARTICIPATE IN A 'PROGRAM' TO DETERMINE WHICH AMONG YOU WILL HAVE THAT RIGHT."
"IT WILL BE A HIGHLY-COOPERATIVE PROGRAM. I AM TOLD THAT YOU MORTALS REQUIRE 'SOCIALISING' IN ORDER TO COOPERATE."
"AS SUCH, YOU WILL BEGIN BY INTRODUCING YOURSELVES. BREAKING THE 'ICE', I BELIEVE."
"I WILL EXPLAIN THE REST ONLY AFTER YOU HAVE ACHIEVED THIS BASIC TASK."

Last edited by KamiPanda on Wed Nov 03, 2021 5:08 pm, edited 11 times in total.
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"What 'n the...?"

An old looking man slowly managed to speak up. Despite the bewildered expression on his face, he seemed to have a kind, pleasant air about him. He looked to be (or had been) in his early sixties with his hair and well-trimmed moustache a perfect white; and his eyes a glossy blue. He seemed to be dressed for winter, dressed in a sweater and a scarf. And judging by his accent, he seemed to be from the countryside.

"Is this some kind of fever dream or what?" The man scratched his head, unable to comprehend what was in front of him. Had he not already died once it would have been safe to say Death's epic guitar shredding would've killed him on the spot. "Last thin' I remember I was just in my house and... when do I get to wake up?"

Noticing there were others nearby, he turned to acknowledge them. "Hey, folks", he addressed them with a worried look. "I'm not sure what's goin' on here. Any of you have a clue or what?" Despite the confused expression, he spoke to them in a familiar way. Clearly this was a man who was used to talking with others.
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"Everybody shut up. Just shut up. One minute. Just shut up for one minute. I think I have something here." said a disheveled man who had quickly taken over what was either the defense or the prosecution's bench to use as a desk, papers and a cup of coffee almost spilling out from the sides. He didn't react to Death's appearance outside of clutching his head in pain whenever the guitar riff got too sick.

"... Nevermind, this is all shit." he took a sip of coffee, before grimacing and pouring out the rest of the cup over the papers, that were quickly carelessly pushed over the edge of the table and onto the floor. Void. Floorid.

Not to be discouraged, he continued to pay no mind to his surroundings and simply took more paper out of a binder to write on.
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"W-Wait, I'm dead...?" Spoke a quiet, feminine voice. She looked quite shocked to learn of her circumstances.

The voice belonged to a beautiful young woman dressed in religious garb. She appeared to be somewhere in her twenties.

"The last thing I remembered was going to sleep." She continued, clutching her crucifix quite tightly. "I suppose my sickness finally claimed my life..." She sighed. "I suppose this is the part of the Lord's plan for me and I shouldn't question it, but it's still surprising to find out I'm dead..."
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"Dead?" a star-spangled woman wondered aloud. She then let out a hearty laugh and held a sword to the sky. "Ahahaha! Very well! Though I may be dead, the spirit of Lady Liberty lives on forever!" She did some EPIC spin tricks with her sword and then thrust it into the air once more. With her theatrics done, the woman formally introduced herself as Maria Washington.

"In some strange way, I suppose the afterlife being a courtroom makes a bit of sense," she noted.
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A young, well built man in a hood stood idly by, subtly nodding at the words spoken to him by the glamourous guitar-wielding skeleton, and tightening the wraps around his wrists.

"Is that right...? Well, it's better to roll with the punches..." He nodded once more, affirmatively, and crossed his arms. "Guess court really is my hell."

He shook his head at the old man's question. "No idea, but I've got a hunch. If this is some setup... I swear, I'll have Slim's head. Zippy? C'mon." He calls out, and glares around the room, eyeing everyone suspiciously. Eventually he gave up and sighed, refusing to elaborate any further.
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"what. WHAT!!!!!!!!! I CAN'T BE DEAD!!! UAUAHAAHHGHGHHH!!"
A girl with... an interesting look suddenly screamed, she appeared to be wearing skates judging by the fact that she was spinning around uncontrollably. She stopped for a moment.

"My boss insisted I took a dang break from work 'n this is what I get............"

She clapped at Maria's epic sword performance obnoxiously, stars in her eyes. "Ma'am you're so cool.... I'm glad there's another leotard enjoyer in here!!!!"

"Also, y'all can call me GUNS. That's what evryone calls me." GUNS offered no further explanation.
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WinterCoat wrote:
"In some strange way, I suppose the afterlife being a courtroom makes a bit of sense," she noted.

"Well, it has basis in myth and in popular conception. We all 'know' souls get judged somehow after death, so even if the concept is fantastical, the reader is on board immediately. Fantastical yet sensible, if a bit played out." the man said, not looking up from his writing. "... The rockstar grim reaper notwithstanding. Once I wake up, I should write this down."

"Assuming this is another dream I'm having passed out on my desk, of course." he paused only to sniff his empty cup. "There's every possibility my editor finally snapped and poisoned my coffee. Or maybe I poisoned the coffee? That doesn't sound right but the entire last week or month or whatever is a blur to me..."
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"OOOO ARE YOU A WRITER???!!" GUNS skated towards the dishevelled man and started to go through his papers without his permission.

"Y'know, I was workin' on a bit of an autobiography myself. My life's pretty eventful, I'd say!! I used to work in a hair salon, but the guy who owned the place fuckin' died in prison or somethin', it was crazy.............."

She's still going through the papers.......
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A scream rose from the void. It was no doubt feminine, but it sounded rough, as if it came from a throat caked in coal dust. Despite the present circumstances, the cry was tinged with anger rather than fear.

"Where is it?" she roared. "Where...the fuck...is it?"

Just as they knew Death was speaking in spite of his rigid jaw, they knew the voice somehow emerged from the woman in a dark grey dress. Her most striking feature was her head—more specifically, her lack of it. A leather strap hung around her neck, which abruptly cut off at a slanted horizontal line flaked with dried blood. Her hand's trembled erratically above her neck like she was caught in the first movement of the Macarena, and her pale skin made her look like either a department store mannequin or a freshly-butchered corpse.

"Just...a few minutes ago! I had a head!" she screamed. "Now it's gone! Why does everyone else get one, huh? Who the hell is responsible for this?"

Her long nails clawed at her chest, forming dull white lines in her skin.
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This CYOA follows Vesti Gates and Lauren Tehra, two detectives who search for the truth, whether in their own dimension or otherwise.

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NIKI_4829 wrote:
"OOOO ARE YOU A WRITER???!!" GUNS skated towards the dishevelled man and started to go through his papers without his permission.

"Y'know, I was workin' on a bit of an autobiography myself. My life's pretty eventful, I'd say!! I used to work in a hair salon, but the guy who owned the place fuckin' died in prison or somethin', it was crazy.............."

She's still going through the papers.......

It takes a minute or two for GUNS' words to register, but eventually he snatched the papers away from her. From what little she could gleam from the chicken scratch and the scattered pages, it seemed to be some kind of courtroom drama? "Excuse me, did I say I was looking for beta readers? Don't answer that. I didn't."

"And yes. I'm a writer. Edgar Gray, you've probably heard of me, don't ask me about your autobiography I don't give advice for free. Technically speaking I'm no longer allowed to talk to fans without a script from my agent anyways."
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"Edgar Gray,, erm.. oohhhhh!! THAT Edgar Gray?? Awesome!!" GUNS pretended to know who Edgar was after he snatched the papers.

"I mean, you're dead anyways, so they'll probably release some of your unfinished stuff as a last cash-grab attempt......."

Planetbox wrote:
"Just...a few minutes ago! I had a head!" she screamed. "Now it's gone! Why does everyone else get one, huh? Who the hell is responsible for this?"


"o-OH MY GOD...... OH MY GOD!!! EDGAR, THAT LADY DOESN'T HAVE A HEAD, WHAT THE HELL!!!!!!" GUNS pointed at her, shaking.
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Edgar took a long sip of coffee. When did that cup get refilled? "... Oh, so you can see her too? I was ready to write it off as a hallucination."
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"A harrowing headless horror..." Maria mused, then sheathed her sword. "Wasn't me."
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The young woman screamed at the sight of the headless woman in front of her. "Begone, demon!" She shouted, holding her crucifix up in an attempt to ward her off.
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The old man didn't seem satisfied with how things were going at all. People seemed to be accepting of their circumstances surprisingly easily and had even begun introducing themselves already. As he was about to interject, he suddenly got interrupted by the woman who seemed to have lost her head. Literally. Going as pale as a sheet, the man looked ready to faint- sadly though, he was unable to do so in this stage of purgatory.

"Right... this is the afterlife, huh!" He spoke some minutes later. He seemed a little confused still but much more willing to accept things than he had been before. "This is, uh... somethin'. T'think I'd die at a time like this... Might havta accept it though." He gave the decapitated woman a worried look. "What was it that Death said, again? We're bein' offered second chances? Well, gosh, I sure as heck want one'a those." He gave a sporting chuckle. Oddly enough it seemed that his usual friendly demeanor was starting to return to him now as he was finally managing to take in what was in front of him. Funny how accepting people can be sometimes.

"So if we're gonna be breakin' the ice, folks, we might as well be quick about it. Got nothin' 'gainst you, course, but I got somebody I need to return to soon, so..." He cleared his throat. "The name's Patrick Murphy. Nobody too important, just your local postman. Feel free to call me Pat for short... or Murph, I don't mind either."

He smiled, both to ease himself and the others. "Now, seems like we've got some interestin' folks 'round here, huh... Pleased to make your acquaintance. Let's hope we can get ourselves back to life, eh?"
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"Oh... Mr. Murph, you remind me of one of the regulars at my job...! A sweet old man..." GUNS skated closer to Patrick and took out a little notepad and a pink glittery pen. "C-can I pretend I'm taking your order? I miss him already... *SOB*"

"ALSO...... how exactly does this 'coming back to life thing' work? Will we be like... zombies?? Or has no one found out about our deaths???"
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"Zombies aren't technically alive, so I would guess we'd just get a round two," Maria guessed. "Besides, certain people definitely know about my death, and I'd imagine at least more than a few of us were done in by an injustice most foul -- murder!" She gestured to the headless girl when she spoke.

"Or maybe not, who knows? Either way, we won't know more about what's going on until we finish Mr. Bonjangles' little ice-breaker."
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"Oh god oh god this can't be happening I can't be dead what about Rei what's going to happen to Rei who's going to be there for..."

A young woman who appeared to be in her mid-20's was rambling to herself in a barely contained panic. She had long, light blue hair with pink highlights, deep red eyes, pink-lensed sunglasses that currently sat on her head, a heart pendant around her neck, and several blue, red, and pink earrings. In sharp contrast with her otherwise flamboyant appearance, she wore a brown suit with matching jacket over her shoulders, black gloves, and black ankle boots. Despite her surroundings, she'd been rather skeptical about the idea of no longer being among the living until she noticed the woman who was literally missing her head; that sure didn't look like a costume.

"Okay, okay, chill out, just... chill," the woman continued talking to herself, slowly coming to terms with her situation. "There's a way out of this, right? Some kind of program... just do that and I can be with Rei again... yeah, it'll all be fine..."

She cleared her throat, then walked on over to the group and flashed a bright and obviously nervous grin. "Hey, everyone!" she cooed. "I'm Nomiya Mai, but just go ahead and call me Mai. 24 years old, up-and-coming fashion model... yeah! I guess that works for introductions, huh? Go ahead and ask if there's anything else you want to know about me, and I'll do my best to answer! Let's get along and get out of here, okay?"
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"THIS IS HORRIBLE!! How many other pretty girls died today, HUH?????? We don't deserve this."
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Heavy breathing wheezes from a hunched form. Each breath is slightly distorted by static, like a radio station right in range.

There's something to the breaths or the way the figure curls and uncurls their gloved hands - whoever this hunched figure is in this in this weird costume is fuming.

Like the others, this thing must be a ghost, but instead of gasp in surprise at their surroundings, they groan in frustration and malcontent.

"I was fooled?! ME?! FOOLED?! AaaaAAAAARRRRGHHHH!" Soft sobs can be heard as the jump-suited person pounds the desk in front of them, pathetically. "And ANOTHER game?! That is so CHEAP!"

Weakly, they sob, "Am I... a m-moron?"

Their bulky tv-like head lifts slightly, and the others can see a green smiley-face on an otherwise black screen.
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"Salutations, fellow deceased!" Maria greeted the strange TV fella, unfazed by its appearance and demeanor.
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"Yoooooooooooooo this is a cool cosplay!! Did you suffocate in it or somethin'? What's your name???" GUNS proceeded to poke the side of the screen
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TV-Head, as that's the only real natural way to refer to them, stands up and stares at the star-spangled speaker of those words and derisively spits (on the inside of the tv? that's the only thing that makes sense).

"Don't put me in the same sentence as the common dead! I didn't deserve to die! I died because other people were either malicious or quite frankly incompetent!" Their voice raises a semitone with every word until the last one comes out as a high pitched squeal. "Could I have done better?! Could I have DONE BETTER?! Who can say. Who can even say, but the one thing that is absolutely true is that nobody else could have. So I think objectively out of everyone here I deserve this chance to live the most."

TV-Head then jumps at GUNS's touch. "That's harassment! Don't tap people like that! This is not a cosplay, this is a cool device I used to strap a bomb to my head for strategic purposes! I'm not going to show up to the afterlife in cosplay!"

"Regardless, my name is Gertrude Cornell, one of the many gorgeous girls who died today."
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NIKI_4829 wrote:
"THIS IS HORRIBLE!! How many other pretty girls died today, HUH?????? We don't deserve this."

"Oh, you're so, so right," Mai nodded and pulled her glasses down over her eyes. "I'm very taken, but thank you~"
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Joker wrote:
The young woman screamed at the sight of the headless woman in front of her. "Begone, demon!" She shouted, holding her crucifix up in an attempt to ward her off.


“Put that thing away!” The headless woman snarled, her voice taking on a demonic tone. “I’m just a woman like you. Worked in an office. Made some questionable choices. Then some asshole chopped my head off. It doesn’t make me any less human!”

She tried to shake her head, but the stump above her shoulders just waved back and forth.

“Anyway, my name...uhh,” she said. “I’m Akari Atamanai. I’m surprised so many people hear speak my language, since...some of you don’t look Japanese.”

If she was staring at Maria, no one could tell.

WinterCoat wrote:
"Zombies aren't technically alive, so I would guess we'd just get a round two," Maria guessed. "Besides, certain people definitely know about my death, and I'd imagine at least more than a few of us were done in by an injustice most foul -- murder!" She gestured to the headless girl when she spoke.

"Or maybe not, who knows? Either way, we won't know more about what's going on until we finish Mr. Bonjangles' little ice-breaker."


“Yeah, yeah...” Akari continued, her voice quieting. “There was someone in my town. Media’s been going crazy for them lately. They cut three or four people’s heads off...and I think you get the picture.”

Akari’s body trembled slightly.
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Franzise Deauxnim wrote:
"Oh, you're so, so right," Mai nodded and pulled her glasses down over her eyes. "I'm very taken, but thank you~"


"I thought that was only until death!" Maybe TV-Head has a special someone in their life they were hoping to get rid of.

Planetbox wrote:
“Yeah, yeah...” Akari continued, her voice quieting. “There was someone in my town. Media’s been going crazy for them lately. They cut three or four people’s heads off...and I think you get the picture.”


"Apparently you didn't get the picture if you kept living there," they add, apparently solely trying to make enemies.
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Doctor Nanjo wrote:
TV-Head, as that's the only real natural way to refer to them, stands up and stares at the star-spangled speaker of those words and derisively spits (on the inside of the tv? that's the only thing that makes sense).

"Don't put me in the same sentence as the common dead! I didn't deserve to die! I died because other people were either malicious or quite frankly incompetent!" Their voice raises a semitone with every word until the last one comes out as a high pitched squeal. "Could I have done better?! Could I have DONE BETTER?! Who can say. Who can even say, but the one thing that is absolutely true is that nobody else could have. So I think objectively out of everyone here I deserve this chance to live the most."


Maria coughed and then laughed nervously. "Aha, alright friend, let's just keep calm, alright? I think we all have our reasons as to why each of us deserves to live more than another. Let's all just stay on the same channel, now, and try not to lose our heads."

She glanced over at Akari. "Oh, uh, probably a poor choice of words."

Planetbox wrote:
“Anyway, my name...uhh,” she said. “I’m Akari Atamanai. I’m surprised so many people hear speak my language, since...some of you don’t look Japanese.”


"I don't know much Japanese, but it sounds like you're speaking plain, old-fashioned American English to me. Maybe everything is universal in the afterlife."
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Planetbox wrote:
“Yeah, yeah...” Akari continued, her voice quieting. “There was someone in my town. Media’s been going crazy for them lately. They cut three or four people’s heads off...and I think you get the picture.”

Akari’s body trembled slightly.

"I get that death must have something against you, considering Ms. Bomb Head over there didn't come back as a dullahan." Edgar gestured towards TV Head with his mug. "Unless she didn't actually die from it going off, which would be a terrible anticlimax. And awkward for me, as the only one carrying my own murder weapon around."
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The hooded man rubs the back of his neck and groans. It seemed like neither Slim nor Zippy would be coming.

“Guess it was only a matter of time. Though if there’s a second chance…” He mumbles and shakes his head.

Planetbox wrote:
“Yeah, yeah...” Akari continued, her voice quieting. “There was someone in my town. Media’s been going crazy for them lately. They cut three or four people’s heads off...and I think you get the picture.”

Akari’s body trembled slightly.

"I wonder what's up with you. I don't think I'd have ended up in one piece, but here I am, right as rain. Poor lass." He frowned in Akari's direction, though he had no idea if she would even see it. "Takin' it better than most, though. Maybe you have some high tolerances... Not bad. Not bad at all... Shame you're wasting that potential workin' at some office. Or were, I guess. Not much work down here, unless you're one of those lawyer types."

NIKI_4829 wrote:
"THIS IS HORRIBLE!! How many other pretty girls died today, HUH?????? We don't deserve this."

The man in the hood seemed to wince slightly at GUNS' comment, though it was extremely subtle. "Damn shame half of ya are dressed funny, too. Heh."
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NIKI_4829 wrote:
"THIS IS HORRIBLE!! How many other pretty girls died today, HUH?????? We don't deserve this."


Akari wilted at what should have been a perfectly acceptable compliment.

“Wish I’d been attacked by some nose-removing killer instead. Would have been better off...”

Doctor Nanjo wrote:
"Apparently you didn't get the picture if you kept living there," they add, apparently solely trying to make enemies.


“Oh, listen, look. Just listen,” Akari formed her hands into claws and shook them in Gertrude’s direction. “In case you haven’t connected the dots yet. You’ve got a little more head than you need, and I don’t have enough. So unless you want these around your throat, keep your opinions to yourself!”

She turned back to Maria. If she took offense to her comment, she didn’t show it.

“Ah, yeah. That would make sense. Especially, since I’m still able to talk, despite not having...you know. Those strings in your throat that, uh. Make the words happen.”

She tried to massage her forehead but finding it not there, held her hand out in front of her.

“How do I still have a headache without a head? Someone out there must be laughing real hard at all this.”
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Doctor Nanjo wrote:
TV-Head then jumps at GUNS's touch. "That's harassment! Don't tap people like that! This is not a cosplay, this is a cool device I used to strap a bomb to my head for strategic purposes! I'm not going to show up to the afterlife in cosplay!"

"Regardless, my name is Gertrude Cornell, one of the many gorgeous girls who died today."
"

"Ah!! So you strapped a bomb to your head and you died! WHY?? Fuck around-find out situation, I'm guessin'!"

"Alright Getrude, as a fellow pretty girl, we will figure out the way to become alive again!!!!!"

Planetbox wrote:
“Anyway, my name...uhh,” she said. “I’m Akari Atamanai. I’m surprised so many people hear speak my language, since...some of you don’t look Japanese.”
Akari’s body trembled slightly.


"Whut. I'm pretty sure I don't know Japanese... we must be speakin' some sort of universal language or somethin'!!! That sounds so epic."

Kachu wrote:
The man in the hood seemed to wince slightly at GUNS' comment, though it was extremely subtle. "Damn shame half of ya are dressed funny, too. Heh."


"YA GOT ANYTHIN' TO SAY ABOUT OUR 'FITS?!?!?!" She pointed sharply at the man. Apparently GUNS has very acute hearing.
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Doctor Nanjo wrote:
Franzise Deauxnim wrote:
"Oh, you're so, so right," Mai nodded and pulled her glasses down over her eyes. "I'm very taken, but thank you~"


"I thought that was only until death!" Maybe TV-Head has a special someone in their life they were hoping to get rid of.

For a moment, it almost looked like a searing light flashed behind Mai's tinted lenses. "...m-maybe that applies to most people, but... I'm not most people," she responded with restraint.
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"That's only if you're married, right??? And even then..... we get a chance to live again supposedly, so HANG IN THERE!!!!!" GUNS aggressively pats the model on her right shoulder to give her some reassurance.

"I, myself, was on my way to a date in these here... roller skates... oohhhh. I think I know what happened to me now......"
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Planetbox wrote:
“Put that thing away!” The headless woman snarled, her voice taking on a demonic tone. “I’m just a woman like you. Worked in an office. Made some questionable choices. Then some asshole chopped my head off. It doesn’t make me any less human!”

She tried to shake her head, but the stump above her shoulders just waved back and forth.

“Anyway, my name...uhh,” she said. “I’m Akari Atamanai. I’m surprised so many people hear speak my language, since...some of you don’t look Japanese.”

If she was staring at Maria, no one could tell.


"S-Sorry!" The woman said, lowering her crucifix. "I was just on edge with everything going on. Please forgive me, Akari." She smiles for a moment before speaking up again.

"I-I just realized I forgot to introduce myself!" She continued, speaking a little louder so the others could hear her. "My name is Kris T. Ian, but you can all call me Kris! It's a pleasure to meet everyone! I just wish it were in happier circumstances, however..."
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"YOU NEED NOT WORRY ABOUT YOUR DEATHS."
"IF YOU RETURN, THOSE WHO WERE AROUND YOU WILL PERCEIVE WHAT THEY NEED TO IN ORDER TO RATIONALISE IT."

The conversation was cut off as Death began speaking. He then started playing something new as the backing track to his explanation.

[Epic guitar: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pXKjIgvRr0s]

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"NOT ALL AMONG YOU HAVE YET SPOKEN, BUT TIME IS OF NO CONCERN HERE."
"YOU WILL ALL BECOME ACQUAINTED."
"FOR NOW, I WILL EXPLAIN YOUR PURPOSE."

Death snapped his bony fingers, and the clatter caused a number of ghost-like beings to fly into view all around. They all wore identical, tattered, purple capes that obscured their faces, the glowing features of which were all that could be seen.

[The Numina: https://i.imgur.com/OxkkuJd.png]

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"THESE ARE THE NUMINA. SINGULAR, 'NUMEN'. YOU CAN THINK OF THEM AS THE CLERKS OF THE AFTERLIFE."
"THEY WILL PROVIDE VISUALS FOR MY EXPLANATION."
"YOUR PURPOSE HERE WILL BE TO DEBATE MURDERS IN A TRIAL."

Two of the Numina acted out a scene where one stabbed the other, which melodramatically fell to the floor. A group of other Numina then swarmed around the "killer", carrying it to the defendant's stand. The Numina's largely unchanging expressions gave the scene a very uncanny feeling.

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"JUST AS WITH HUMAN TRIALS, THERE WILL BE A DEFENDANT."
"YOU WILL SPLIT YOURSELVES INTO TWO TEAMS FOR EACH TRIAL."
"ONE TEAM WILL DEFEND THE ACCUSED, THE OTHER WILL PROSECUTE THEM."
"IN SIMPLER TERMS, ONE WILL ARGUE FOR THE ACCUSED'S INNOCENCE, THE OTHER THEIR GUILT."

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"the defendant stabbed him!"

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"objection!"
"the victim is immortal and therefore cannot actually die!"

Two teams of Numina had taken opposing positions in the courtroom and were badly acting out a courtroom drama. They were completely silent, yet those watching could somehow hear the words they were 'speaking' directly inside their heads. Or, perhaps inside their 'souls' as it were, given Akari's circumstances.

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"ONCE THE DEBATE HAS GONE ON LONG ENOUGH, I WILL GIVE MY VERDICT."
"THE SIDE WHO HAS MOST CONVINCED ME WILL WIN."
"TO BE CLEAR, YOUR AIM IS NOT TO FIND THE 'TRUTH'. IT IS TO PURSUE YOUR TEAM'S OBJECTIVE UNTIL THE END."
"THERE WILL BE THREE SUCH TRIALS."
"ANY AMONG YOU WHO MANAGE TO WIN AT LEAST TWO WILL BE GRANTED THE RIGHT TO LIVE ONCE MORE."
"I BELIEVE THAT IS ALL. THE PROCESS WILL BECOME CLEARER ONCE THE FIRST TRIAL BEGINS."
"THAT SAID, ARE THERE ANY QUESTIONS BEFORE WE PROCEED?"
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NIKI_4829 wrote:
"Oh... Mr. Murph, you remind me of one of the regulars at my job...! A sweet old man..." GUNS skated closer to Patrick and took out a little notepad and a pink glittery pen. "C-can I pretend I'm taking your order? I miss him already... *SOB*"


"Depends on what place you're workin' at. I gotta warn ya, though, Chinese food isn't my thing!" Pat responded to GUNS rather brightly, eager to have somebody to talk to.

"Anyway, seems like this bunch is an interestin' collection for ya, huh, Death?" He asked the grim figure. "Lots'a variety, one person with a TV for a head and another with nothin' at all! And yet we can still all understand each other... this is kinda like that one tale, right? Tower of Babel! Oh, but I guess it's the other way 'round..." Pat scratched his head.

"In any case, what's all this 'bout murders?" Pat asked after giving Death's lecture a listen. "So we gotta split ourselves to either defend or accuse a guy we've never heard of of murder? Seems kinda rough... Are these murders all real or didja make 'em up for the sake of this game? I'm assumin' they're totally unrelated to the rest of us, but doesn't that mean we know nothin' going into these trials? How're we supposed to figure out which side we'll be on then? Just go by instinct? Then again, I guess that might not make the biggest difference... 'specially if it's about how we present our cases in the end."

"Anyone here familiar with this sorta thing, though?" He asked the others. "Murder mysteries and the like, that is. Or even a courtroom drama. Never been into either. All I do is deliver the post." He let out a small chuckle. "If any of ya know what you're doin', that'd be a great help in all o' this."
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Southern Corn wrote:
"Anyway, seems like this bunch is an interestin' collection for ya, huh, Death?" He asked the grim figure. "Lots'a variety, one person with a TV for a head and another with nothin' at all! And yet we can still all understand each other... this is kinda like that one tale, right? Tower of Babel! Oh, but I guess it's the other way 'round..." Pat scratched his head.


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"IS THAT UNUSUAL SOMEHOW?"
"YOU HUMANS ALL LOOK DIFFERENT TO ME REGARDLESS OF WHATEVER STRANGE MODIFICATIONS YOU APPLY."
"EACH A UNIQUE SOUL."
"THAT WILL ONE DAY PERISH."

He punctuated the remark with an energetic strum.

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"AS FOR YOUR OTHER QUESTIONS, THEY ARE REASONABLE QUERIES."
"YOU WILL NOT BE THRUST STRAIGHT INTO EACH TRIAL."
"YOU WILL FIRST BE SENT DOWN TO THE LOCATION THE MURDER WILL LATER HAPPEN AT."
"THERE YOU MAY FAMILIARISE YOURSELVES WITH THE AREA AND ITS PEOPLE."

"LATER YOU WILL BE TAKEN TO A PERIOD AFTER THE CRIME HAS BEEN COMMITTED."
"THIS WILL GIVE YOU A CHANCE TO OVERSEE THE INVESTIGATION BY HUMAN SLEUTHS."
"YOU WILL ASSEMBLE EVIDENCE AND WITNESS TESTIMONIES IN THIS MANNER."
"ONLY THEN WILL YOU ALL DECIDE WHETHER YOU WANT TO DEFEND OR CONDEMN THE ACCUSED."
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Southern Corn wrote:
"Anyone here familiar with this sorta thing, though?" He asked the others. "Murder mysteries and the like, that is. Or even a courtroom drama. Never been into either. All I do is deliver the post." He let out a small chuckle. "If any of ya know what you're doin', that'd be a great help in all o' this."

"If I could write a courtroom drama or a murder mystery, I wouldn't even be dead to begin with." Edgar elucidated. "But solving the murder isn't the objective anyways. All you have to do is write a convincing enough conclusion."
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"Trials? Mysteries?" Akari shouted. "Ugh, screw this. I've got a mystery for you, ya worthless bag of bones. Where's my head? See if you can puzzle that one out."

She then turned to Postman Pat to address his question.

"Yeah, I guess I got some experience with murders...Err, murder mysteries, I mean. I'd read mystery novels occasionally, while waiting till it was social acceptable to leave work. Can't say I ever took a crack at solving them though."
Vesti and Lauren's Interdimensional Investigations
This CYOA follows Vesti Gates and Lauren Tehra, two detectives who search for the truth, whether in their own dimension or otherwise.

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