By the hands of the Gods, you have been plucked from your time and from your world, dropped into the box.
Only the box is a world of its own.
We are a mass crossover based on the concept of Pandora's Box. Characters from nearly any fandom can be played here. Because of the endless character possibilities, we are canon only here at Pandora. Take a peek at our rules and plot information before starting your new life in Pandora.
The sun surprisingly shown brightly on a place dubbed Misty Hollow. It'd taken her a bit to get to the particular place, but now that she was there she had to glance down the street veiling her eyes with her fingers. Mist did seem to hang low among the streets, but the sun's brightness seemed to cut through it. Rather that made the whole place more eerie or not she wasn't sure. The sixteen-year-old dropped her hand, allowing it to tug on the bookbag that remained her constant and often only companion.
She'd spent some time learning about various locations within Pandora, Centria and the Vales specifically. More so the former as she'd found that she was more comfortable amongst it than the constant magic of the Vales. Besides, the kind of gruesome and creepy horrors were more down her alley than in the Vales. Seriously, Vales seemed to have more demons and monsters. Ark City was full of people, with its murders and fires. Even if proving demons and ghosts weren't real was something she enjoyed-- especially because it freaked at least one of her less than a handful of friends out-- she preferred human matters.
Which was what brought her here to Misty Hollows, which seemed to have the most rumors out of it of any of the locations in Centria. Monsters and hauntings. A half magical barrier that once protected it, it only made sense that she'd think it was cool and interesting enough to check out. Or more precisely an old abandoned graveyard at the edge of the little town that some people in one of the cafes were in Ark City had been talking about might be haunted (thanks to some gruesome murder non-the-less). Given no one had any solid answers and she was just, well, bored and the kind of person interested in it she wanted to prove that it was simply just a creepy graveyard.
People liked to make something of nothing she'd long ago realized. Pandora had more weird than usual, but not everything could be haunted just because someone said it was. She figured that they were, decidedly, just creeped out because graveyards already were but old and unattended ones were even worse. That was the theory she was going with as she checked the map on her phone once more before making it through the multiple back-streets to where an old, half down fence with a rickety gate led to a sloping, certainly unkempt cemetery.
"Well, if any place would be haunted this would be one of them," Michelle mentioned to herself as she approached the gate. Barely a push on it sends it open, the metal half-falling off with a cracking sound that made her wince. If anything else was there it would definitely know from the sound alone. Great, she thought to herself as she went further in, one hand on her camera bag. Where others found graveyards creepy she could find it a solemn kind of beauty-- This place just made it seem like a world lost in time rather than someplace that was intimately haunted.
"All right," She breathed to herself passing by another row-- many of the stones over-turned, "they said the scene was near an old digger's shed in the far right corner..." Her voice didn't quiver as she spoke to herself even if being there did send some kind of internal shivers, she ignored it-- creepy was often synanonmous with cool in her book. Though the further she went in the heavier the fog got so at one point she had to pull out the phone proper to use its flash
Misty Hollow never made Toby feel all that comfortable. But she had heard a rumor that a certain demon had vanished. She didn't know whether to believe it or not but Toby felt like she needed to look into it. To look for him or Juliet. Trying to find either of them at his house. Or was it his old house? Had he moved? Toby couldn't actually remember too much about him after everything had gone to shit. Qrow had spoken about an apartment so there was a good chance Toby was being antsy about Misty Hollow for no reason.
She was here on a case. She hadn't gone looking for any trouble labeled Crowley. But since she was around, why not just triple check? There were plenty of reasons to do that. She hadn't seen Crowley since May, when he had shown up at her front door with an apology guaranteed lay dress. Crowley had spent a ton of time in Misty Hollow. It had been his home before everything had gone to shit.
Supposedly a local cemetery was haunted. Toby had brought a few things to help her cleanse it of evil spirits. Toby was going to clear it, set a ward to keep spirits out, and then roll back home. She had walked a little out of her way to make sure that everything was good to go on that Crowley front.
That front gate was already open when Toby got there. Someone else had been through and they had been through recently. There was dust that had been disturbed around it and Toby didn't have to be a "tracking expert" to notice that sort of thing. She moved past it and crept in between grave stones within a few steps. She paused when fog seemed rise for no reason. There was a figure ahead of her and Toby squinted trying to take a look at it. It didn't seem to be a ghost, not with a light coming from its hand, but there was always a chance she could be wrong.
"Hello?" Toby's hand was halfway into one of her jacket pockets just in case though. There were so many things that ghosts might not have been able to do in her world, that they could do in others. Toby wasn't going to take anything for granted until she knew what she was dealing with.
Nothing out here except a creepy shed Michelle thought decidedly-- Something of a disappointment given that Pandora seemed bent on proving all of its creepy things were real. Her hand lowered to her side, flashlight aimed to the ground, as she inspected the nearest tombstone. This one was cracked in half, the statue of a formerly winged angel beheaded. She snorted to herself, only just hearing the crunching steps of footfall in dried out grass before she heard a voice.
Ghosts usually didn't sound like people walking and they certainly didn't call out a greeting, not in her (admittedly) limited experience. But ghost stories involved a lot more horrifying sounding things than that of someone approaching. Michelle's brow arched expectantly as she turned around and raised her phone just enough to cut through the heavy air. The person approaching was a woman. Seemingly unarmed, but that never really meant anything. Especially here.
"Hey," Michelle greeted, not really forcing her voice any louder than usual and with a lack of enthusiasm. The hand that held her phone bumped against her leg as she considered what more to say. Or if she should let this go by as an awkward greeting, but given that she was a very observant person and it didn't take much observing to realize that this place was: One, abandoned. Two, not likely visited often unless by kids in a prank (or in her case a very bored teenager who liked creepy places). Or three, likely not haunted and just genuinely creepy... Well, given all of that she lacked a belief the woman approaching was either a caretaker or an actual honest to goodness ghost.
"So, you come here often?" the girl asked decidedly, "I'm guessing this isn't a real hot spot for the dead, either." At least short of making it seem extra spooky nothing had popped out at her yet. Maybe that would change, but it seemed like the most she'd get out of this place today was some really bizarre and off-putting photos. Which was cool enough, she thought, but it seemed like this entire place had been avoided for years-- Either for good reason, superstition, or the more depressing (and usually real) reason most cemeteries went uncared for: A lack of anyone left around to look after them.
Toby Daye came face to face with a teenager. A human teenager who seemed to be as excited by Toby being there as she was with mold growing. Funny enough, Toby smirked slightly and shook her head. She did not come here often. "No, I was hired to take a look into--" Toby cut off for a second and her brows drew together. An odd smell was coiling around them. Apparently their fog could have been a magical fog or maybe something magical was hiding in it. Thank you, Misty Hollow.
Human teenager, Toby Daye, some sort of magical something causing problems. This was going to get interesting really quick. Toby tensed without saying anything and took another couple of steps towards Michelle to make sure she was within grabbing distance if shit really went south. That was when it suddenly got colder. "Cold spots, magical fog, and where is our fucking gh--" Something solidified suddenly a few feet in front of them. A solider of some sort, though he looked to be from some old timey war that might have happened in Pandora's fake kick over or maybe just what he was wearing when had been brought through to Pandora.
"Stay next to me, alright?" Toby didn't know anything about this kid but that had never really mattered. Instead Toby subtly moved so that she was placing herself between Michelle and that ghost. Even as it stared at them with eyes that seemed creepier than it should have been. Except... more figures started to appear. All in a semi-circle blocking off how Toby had gotten in. Almost like they were supposed to move further into this cemetery. Not creepy at all.
Toby's left hand dropped to her thigh and then pulled up her iron bladed weapon. It was half pistol, half knife, but its iron was important when dealing with ghosts. Then she reached out to that teenager and gently put her right hand on her shoulder. "Get ready to run." Just in case. She couldn't let someone get hurt here. Toby wasn't about that kind of life. Her priorities had shifted in a short amount of time and her illusion covered eyes dragged over those ghostly forms while she waited for something to happen.
No, I was here to take a look the woman had started and stopped with such abruptness that Michelle's brow arched upwards. It's only a few moments later she realized why as nostrils flared at a wafting smell. She tucked her phone back in her bag as she noticed the woman moving closer. Brows furrowed as a hand stayed on the strap of her bag, freezing at the sudden shift of the air.
As much as she liked creepy and macabre things, it wasn't as if every place she went to actually responded. Most places were just quiet and (unsurprisingly) false. So the woman going off about cold spots and "magical" fog-- why was it always magic?-- made her sound, if momentarily, like those ghost detectives on some tv show. All up until a figure appeared from the mists, more solid and real than any experience on said crummy tv shows.
If there was one thing Pandora didn't hold back on it was its own level of creepiness. At least she's not like Flash would be, video recording a ghost-- Even if she doubted she'd ever properly get a chance to again. The woman seemed to know something about ghosts though, from the way she spoke. Michelle gave a short jerk of her head in recognition. "They don't seem interested in us getting that far anyway," She mumbled, more to herself than to the woman or the ghost.
Maybe she should be more crept out by blackened eyes than she was, but weird things were just getting to be normal (and she'd never been that scared by them anyway, she'd taken special enjoyment from terrorizing Ned with facts about the locations they'd went to). Her eyes darted to the weapon the woman pulled out, brows knitting together. "Does that work on ghosts?" She inquired in rapid way, still more to herself in the same quiet kind of panic she'd been wearing. Her mind always whirled to life, looking for solutions, but it also helplessly supplied more questions than it did answers.
Be ready to run the woman says and she nodded grimly. Somehow, from the encircling of ghosts, she doubted that would be as easy as all that. It certainly didn't seem as much-- but then what could ghosts really do-- and it was the woman who was clearly more experienced. And again, her brain supplied in the same helpful manner, she'd said magic. Which annoyingly meant magical ghosts. The ghosts crowded further in, seemingly multiplying by the second as the crowd grew. Dark eyes ominous and weapons in hand seemingly less translucent by the second. She shifted her weight with a mumbled word, watching as the nearest one properly raised its weapon to aim it at the pair.
Those ghosts were not interested in them getting away. If anything, or how this normally worked, those ghosts would want them to stay for a very long time. Which was something that Toby wasn't about and she doubted her teenager in tow would want to stay either. Living was always preferred to death.
"Iron." Toby's answer was straight and simple. There was no point in beating around that bush. Iron worked on ghosts. Not every ghost, but apparently ghosts from a lot of different worlds didn't like iron. Made Toby wonder if there was any connection to faerie but she doubted. Just another one of those things that seemed to spread across many realms. Common knowledge did make shit a lot easier to handle and Toby was glad for it.
Except there were far too many ghosts for Toby's single blade. Good thing she had bullets to. With little hesitation, Toby leveled her weapon at a pack right in front of them, firing off a shot. Instantly any ghost in its path disappeared. Not forever, but it would startle them a little to make sure that they had some breathing room.
One of them had been aiming at them and Toby had made sure to target back. Of course, once she got confirmation that her iron bullets would work on these ghosts as well as they did faeries, Toby cracked off several more shots. Her hand moved almost in a blur, snapping in different directions just long enough to stabilize and shoot, before whipping over to its next stop. But more and more ghosts kept appearing.
"Alright, start moving back. Put your hand on my shoulder and pull me with you." Toby would protect her back and keep close. She'd trust this teen to lead her without looking over her shoulder. That way they could move as fast as possible while they tried to find a better spot to be.
Iron, the woman supplied simply and it's not like Michelle had to ask. She'd spent most of her time rolling her eyes about what supposedly kept ghosts back-- they were often the most random things and predictably never worked-- so the idea of iron working here is hilariously underwhelming. But the woman's barely breathed the word out before the air is ringing with shots. Michelle grimaced, unused to the sharp sound, mouth forming a small bow at the sight.
The ghosts that had been there had scattered, at least momentarily. A few of the ones that had disappeared were already starting to form back, though they never wavered at the sides of the crowd. The bolder of the ones still with weapon ready in hand-- She momentarily had to wonder if ghost guns would work so well on humans. It was a question she both wanted to know but also, well, not. As much as she liked researching creepy and otherwise "scary" things she did in fact enjoy being... Alive. Mostly in one piece, even if her sanity didn't remain intact.
Ringing remained in her ears even as the unidentified woman began giving her instructions. Michelle gave a grim sort of nod and took a breath. It wasn't like she had anything more useful or helpful to do-- she woefully had neither iron or holy water, or any other spirit finding items-- so the seventeen-year-old can do naught but listen. "If we die here do you think we'll join their undead army?" She mentioned wryly, ignoring the quiver in her voice as she reached out to grip the woman by the shoulder. At least they were the same height, that would make it less awkward, but she still let out a puff of breath.
Her attention turned to behind them. The gate they'd entered was now unable to be seen through the thickness of the fog. The crowd more scattered behind them, the armed ones on the other side. It didn't mean anything, though, seeing as the flickering in the corner of her eyes showed that more (or perhaps those that had disappeared) were filling out their ranks. "Uh-huh," She uttered, the sound low as she considered the situation-- Another puff of breath and fingers gripped Toby's shoulder and she pressed forward. If she was supposed to be scared she didn't really show it, but then she was fairly good at compartmentalizing until things were safe (and she definitely like showing emotion, especially in front of strangers).
Toby had to admit that she had no idea who this teenager was. There was a chance, a very small chance, that she was involved in all of this somehow. Not with that flashlight and those questions. She had seemed properly scared, if calm about it, but she was not prepared for those words. Joining their undead army? There was a startled snort even if Toby was trying to keep her attention on what was in front of her.
Weird girl, which was not an insult in Toby's mind, put her hand on Toby's shoulder and started to lead. Toby kept her gaze directly on their ghostly friends and brought her other weapon up as well. It was a silver blade, so it wouldn't do anything directly to these ghosts, but it was also filled with iron bullets. So that had to count for something.
Those ghosts seemed to understand what they were doing to a certain degree. They moved to keep them from exiting, and still attempted to herd them backwards. Into that cemetery further. "Alright, where are you fucking herding us." Toby muttered in under her breath but any time a ghost got too close for her liking, she shot it. One bullet, two. Each weapon held ten shots before she had to reload and her reload time was under thirty seconds, at least for now. It was difficult to do one handed but Toby was working on it. It helped when she saw someone better do it, like Ozpin, but those were small things that still needed to be worked on.
"Is there anything on that side?" Toby raised her voice only a little to make it clear that she was speaking directly to MJ. Still without moving her head. There had been another cold draft down her spine, which could mean more ghosts or it could just mean that there was a breeze that happened to tickle her while she was moving. One could never know in a place like Misty Hollow and there were far too many general smells in a place like this for Toby to pick out too much.
She just hoped that these ghosts were all they had to really deal with. After spending her ammo, she had an idea to get this kid out of here. She'd reload, have MJ hop on piggy back style, and then would blast a path out. Dropping MJ off somewhere safe, before charging right back in to figure out what was going on in this goddamn cemetery. At least, that was what she was hoping for. Saving lives now was more important than solving a mystery and it always would be.
Her wryness had left even a smidge of amusement and that was enough to make her relax. Slightly. If they did die here then whatever weird army was surrounding them would probably be where they ended up, but she seriously didn't want to join a gaggle of ghostly ghouls. The teenager breathed out wishing that she had anything helpful in this situation, but she lacked even her mace companion.
"There's probably some open grave they want us to fall in," Michelle wagered. It was the least sinister thing she imagined a ghost could do, but then that's the sort of thing they did-- Create accidents. And an open grave would be deep and out here unlikely to be heard if someone fell in. At least everything else she'd faced had been a tangible being. Her fingers twitched anxiously at her side and she gives a huff of a laugh at the woman's question.
"They have a cult following," She supplied after a moment, "the graveyard doesn't even look like it holds this many people." But then some cultures built on top of old gravesites, so who knew how many actually could be here. Maybe being magic ghosts meant they weren't even the ghosts of the people here, which meant that the possibilities of more was infinite. As many questions as she had about the whole situation, none of them were exactly helpful now staring down a small mob of them-- At least the direction of the gate there were fewer, as if where the fog were less dense there were fewer.
Which would be helpful knowledge if she had any idea how to do something about it or anything more than a cellphone in a sidebag and her bookbag (books would be awful against ghosts). "So, uh, you don't happen to have any handy tricks to disperse fog, do you?" She questioned over her shoulder idly, doubt in her voice. Not unless that gun also was capable of that. "We should be able to get through if we backtrack. Maybe." She doesn't sound entirely confident, but then she's no expert in, well, any of this.
Toby couldn't help but regret speaking out loud a little bit. Kid had a really dark sense of humor, didn't she? Which was normally alright with Toby. She didn't enjoy all dark humor but she could get there. It just seemed a little more startling when it was coming from a teenager. Or was this how she dealt with stress? Toby didn't want to really think about that too hard.
She kept on talking though and Toby tried to listen in between her shots. As well as counting how many bullets she had in each weapon. So there wouldn't be any missed time if she pulled that trigger and nothing damn well came out. So Toby was juggling a good amount of things while she got pulled backward. Plenty of ghosts kept showing up whenever Toby cleared a path.
Then her teenaged companion brought up all that fog. "It's magic, it's not going anywhere." Because it was meant to be there. Whoever was tethering all these ghosts here was doing something with that fog. Maybe they were connected? "Are there any clearings back there?" It didn't seem to be poisonous, which was good. Toby could fight it but she couldn't be sure about her tag along.
She used her last bullet in her left and then started to reload, counting down how many shots she had left in her right weapon. Two. Some ghosts surged forward. One. Those sharp cracks sounded loud in her ears but with how wooded this area was, she doubted any noise would get very far. Her last shot rang out and then she was reloading both. And turning. Because she didn't have enough ammo to get them out this way. Time to run. Her hand closed around MJ's upper arm as gently as she could manage and then she was pulling her along. Keeping one weapon out, just in case.
"You can say it's magic as much as you want, but there's like gaps. Which means there's gotta be some way to disperse it, unless this person just sucks at keeping the middle contained," Michelle mumbled, more to herself. There's not much she can help in these situations except to observe. And right now the weakness was in the fact some of the fog seemed thinned out which probably meant whatever it was spread itself too thin. But she'd think that'd be like at the ends, making it a smaller diameter than in the middle. Call her crazy, but maybe it could be dispersed. Somehow. Wind, maybe? Too bad she didn't come prepared with a portable fan (it wouldn't have worked, but she'd feel better).
It doesn't matter that she wants to say no there aren't really holes behind, they're running out of solutions fast and a few more winces and the gunfire suddenly stops. The woman's reloading and then grasping Michelle's arm. The girl's dark eyes flicker uncertainly, but it's definitely the woman and she's moving towards the aforementioned (seemingly) well-guarded exit. The fog isn't as dense over here and there were patches that were empty, as if the fog couldn't quite make it all the way through.
Just walk through the ghosts, get through. That's all they could do and maybe hope that their friends didn't shoot them-- But given all they'd done was leer at them and hold weapons... She doubted they could. They didn't even talk. Maybe whoever it was just really didn't want them seeing what was going on in the graveyard. If it was magic. She could only mumble something under her breath, frown deeply, and follow along-- She definitely didn't have anything useful and she was pretty sure all of the metal on her was not miraculously iron that she could just throw if something went south.
The teen was talking straight about all sorts of logical things to pick out about those ghosts. Toby didn't have time for logic. She didn't have time to think through anything on a logical fucking level. Instead she just moved as quickly as possible. There was an uptick in that magic smell and Toby knew that it was going to be bad news if that smell continued to increase. She needed some space and she needed it fast.
"Anything you can pick out, kid!" Toby didn't know what else to do in that moment but she twisted them along a path and then realized they might have had a chance to get out if they moved quick. Which meant she had no time to warn the teenager before she suddenly bent at the waist to pick MJ up. Bridal style, because that was the easiest.
Then she was moving with no warning. Faster than anything they could have managed together. Faster than the ghosts by a long shot as she sped along the cemetery path. "Hold on!" Then Toby kicked it up another notch, dodging a few more ghosts with a leap that landed them on top of a small grave site. She then kicked off of that and started to head for what seemed to be another exit.
Skidding out of the cemetery, Toby put MJ down as soon as possible. As gently as possible to boot. Then she took a breath and looked up at the cemetery to see if anyone was following. "You got a working theory on this?" Teen had to be here for a reason, right? Toby didn't have too much left in the way of iron bullets. She wanted to know what MJ had figured out before diving back in.
It wasn't as if the woman gave her much of a chance to say anything before she was picking her up. In the most embarrassing way possible. If Toby had the senses to hear her give an annoyed grunt then she certainly would have, but as confused and irritating as the whole situation is--- Michelle is still at a loss when they're suddenly outside of the cemetry. She's used to crazy by this point. She lived in a world with freaking super hroes and her closest friend like was... what? Part spider or something?
It didn't mean she liked it. She didn't like moving that fast. She didn't like feeling this jumbled or weak on her feet. She hated it. The woman then was addressing her and for all of her attempts at nonchalance the teenager frowns. Was she supposed to have a theory? Sure, she'd gone because people said there might be ghosts. But she'd also gone because ghosts rarely, if ever, actually existed. More likely there was something creepy there and she could take the chance to sketch it or something... Or maybe she'd take a picture of an actual ghost (a fact she failed to do, but apparently these ghosts weren't even real ghosts).
So she frowned more deeply.
"It might surprise you to know, but unless I'm watching this Unsolved show because the one guy is hilarious and the other pathetic, I don't have much experience with ghosts," Michelle retorted with something of a shrug. Her dark eyes still clearly whirling with thoughts all the same as she huffed out a breath. She tossed a look at the cemetery. Misty Hollow was foggy, but that place definitely had a different kind of fog. An artificial one.
Another huff as her fingers fidgeted at her side. "It's spread to thin in places, I guess. Ghosts aren't there or they're really faded," She said after a moment, helplessly, and sounding as if she doubted the information was of any actual use, "whatever it is seems to be like, I don't know? Running out of power fast? Is that a thing?" Admittedly, she doesn't know much about magic. But every thing had its limits she couldn't imagine magic didn't either-- But what did she know? She was just a nerd from a tech school.
Toby would have understood MJ's feelings on the matter. She had had similar ones herself before her aura and even after it. There had been her stay in the hospital that was still ringing around in the back of her mind. Something to keep in mind when she didn't have Sans around to teleport her straight to an ER. Something to be careful about.
As much as she could.
Kid didn't have much experience with ghosts, she said. "And you're rooting around in Misty Hollow?" This was like ghost central, wasn't it? It had been before the Calamity but Toby really hadn't been here since then because of... well, because of Crowley reasons.
"Could be tied to a spell that isn't holding right." Kid had a point though. Or maybe the strain was the issue. Maybe there were too many ghosts colliding around inside. Or maybe Toby had kicked something that needed to stay still in her mad dash to escape with both their skins still intact. "That's the problem with Pandora. Anything is fucking possible." Toby growled out those words and then started to reload her guns, not really caring as the iron sizzled against her fingers. She really should have brought gloves.
"Look, I need you to stay out here but I'd appreciate it if you could give me some kind of warning if so--" Toby cut off as there was a flash off green light off to one side of the cemetery. Suddenly there were no ghosts inside at all. What the fuck was that all about?
Michelle shrugged at the woman's near exasperated question. It's not like she knew much about the place. There were a number of places in Pandora folks called haunted, the few she'd visited so far hadn't been. All she wanted to do today was take photographs, so it wasn't like she expected to find actual ghosts-- if you could call them ghosts, ghosts by magic probably shouldn't be called ghosts-- still she had no answer for the woman's question. It's hardly as if she knew the town's reputation before a hundred years ago.
"So probably not even real ghosts," Michelle reasons easily, dark eyes scanning between woman and the fog behind them-- Her attention returning to her as she placed more bullets in. She should reasonably be worried about someone loading a gun in front of her, or even the way the woman's fingers turned red against it, but she's not. There's really no time to be worried as the woman goes on-- Talking about what ifs (which were annoying, she liked hardcore answers). And then there's a flash and her attention turned back to the cemetery.
The fog still lingered, though not nearly as dense, but the figures within it had vanished. "You were saying?" Michelle questioned grimly, leaning forward to press the gate closed-- Undoubtedly no one needed to go back in there. She doubted the woman would appreciate if she just went back in and Michelle was curious, not entirely stupid. "Couldn't be some kid wizard playing a prank? They didn't exactly attack or anything. They just stared menacingly." Maybe if they'd been given a chance to attack something more would have happened, but this whole thing seems sketchy and all Michelle can do is stare into the fog with brows pinched together.
Her fingers twist around the bag's strap as she let out a breath. Now what...? The girl squinted at the woman, "You're not going back in there are you?"
"They could have been real ghosts." Enough so that Toby preferred taking the situation seriously. No point in taking any chances that these things weren't the real thing. They could have easily killed them if the ghosts had been strong enough. If they had different kinds of abilities. Strong ones could kill them easily and it was difficult to fight against a ghost once it got ahold of you.
She was glad they hadn't taken any chances. There was still a mystery to solve but Toby thought she could take it a little more slowly. Compared a bit more prepared and warn off the people who had hired her until she could take a second pass around. "Not right now, no." Toby answered the teen's question even though her illusion covered gaze was still stuck on that cemetery. She would have had an easier time by herself but it was best not to take chances.
"Walk you back to the nearest way out of town?" Toby didn't want to leave the kid by herself walking away from here either. Even if it was a kid wizard being a punk and playing pranks, those sorts of things could still go wrong. Sometimes there was a thin line between a prankster and a bully. People could cross that line if they had a bad enough day. So the brunette wasn't going to budge on this. She'd walk MJ out of the sight of the cemetery at the very least, and think over what had actually happened. Then she'd go home herself. But portal, bus, car, whatever it was. Toby would walk her to it and then take her own personal portal back home.
"They could be a lot of things," Michelle countered, "doesn't mean they are something until you have solid evidence. Our magical-apparition friends have disappeared, so finding out what they are exactly ain't gonna happen." Well, maybe if they decided to go back into the graveyard. Something told her that if they did that they'd probably be surrounded again. It seemed like something had triggered, though by her or the woman she's not entirely certain. She's not going to bring that fact up, especially given the other female seemed intent on pushing her out now.
Michelle rolled her eyes. "Doesn't sound like a choice,"She grumbled, "how do you know I don't live here? I could be the ghost queen in question." Okay, she wasn't. But that would have been... Kind of cool. Maybe she should look into learning ghost magic in Pandora (she wouldn't, but sometimes you just had to amuse yourself with the insane). She shrugged her shoulders, flicking a quick picture before she sighed. It wasn't like she'd come there to stick around anyway.
She stuffed her hands in her pockets as she stepped away. The teenager doesn't bother to give it another glance over her shoulder as she shrugged her shoulders. "I can handle myself if you want to go back in," Michelle added as she began the trek back to where she'd earlier been dropped off. It seemed like the woman still had interest in doing as much and maybe she didn't exactly get it, but someone should probably figure out if it was magic or ghosts. Clearly the woman was more experienced than she was in that front.
Wow, this one liked to talk. It was kind of an interesting way of talking though. Very unimpressed with many things and saying other shit bluntly because it was almost like a club the kid was trying to wield. There wasn't anything wrong with it in Toby's opinion, it just wasn't a common personality to run into because there was also a certain bit a maturity behind it too. Like she was confident in what she was saying and Toby had never been the best with confident people. It was a little more difficult for her to understand them, even if she could appreciate it.
"Ghost Queen." There was a chuckle after that before Toby advised exactly how she could tell that the teenager wasn't her evil doer. "You're human and you don't smell of magic." Toby knew that wasn't exactly the best way to have most conversations but there was also a bit of a gut instinct with this one. Talking bluntly was likely going to get Toby a lot further.
There was a little bit of a smile on Toby's lips but she kept walking with the girl. Back towards the main part of Misty Hollow and where they could both get home. "I'm not prepped to go back in yet. I need to find a few more iron things to help me out. Might have a buddy of mine come check it out instead, he's good with ghosts." Hellboy apparently could talk to them and all sorts of things like that. Toby was certain he'd be good back up to bring along. Ghosts weren't all that scary to her but they did have some abilities that were difficult for the brunette to fight against.
With her little girl at home, it was better to be safe instead of sorry. But she was basically telling MJ that it was time for her to go too, which was why she was walking her back. "My name's Toby." The brunette held her hand out to the teen, keeping an eye out ahead of them but otherwise politely introducing herself. Probably a good thing to do at this stage.
Another shrug. She doesn't mind. There's all sorts of people in her life. She had one teacher who would tell any student who crossed his path about his tragic back story. He practically thrived in being pathetic and sad and sure it wasn't something she understood, but New York was full of all types of personalities. Sure, this woman seemed to be from some magical world where ghosts and magic exited, but she wasn't that odd or strange. "Not all magic needs spells and funny words," She countered easily, "I could be one of those types you can't smell." Which was weird, admittedly, but she can roll with most things. Michelle had always found it important to not be surprised and be quick-witted in response. Besides things couldn't be universal, maybe there was someone out there this woman couldn't smell that would surprise her.
The teenager nodded as if all of that made sense (in some ways it didn't, but the woman didn't have to know). At least she definitely seemed like she wasn't going to leave her alone though which, although she wouldn't admit it, Michelle was quietly grateful for. For as much bravado and "you can't touch me" attitude as she tried to put up... She was also still a teenager, a very normal teenager just trying to get by. She'd seen more shit than some maybe, but she was in a sense as powerless at the woman just bluntly put it. "Maybe he should make a show. Conversations with ghosts," She said wryly stopping only when the woman offered a hand. It's a brief moment before she took her hand.
"Michelle," she offered simply and although the smile is small and hesitant, she tries for one all the same.
Michelle had a point but Toby just grinned at her in response. "That's true but for me, all magic has a scent. Doesn't matter if there's a ritual, an object of power channeling it, or a person using non-verbal magic. I know when magic is being used and typically, who is using it." Toby knew that she was explaining something she didn't have to but it almost felt like a little bit of bantering. Back and forth on the what ifs. MJ was welcome to shoot more at her because Toby... well, Toby enjoyed a good silly conversation or three when she could take the time.
Conversations with ghosts. Toby chuckled slightly before shrugging. "I don't think he's big on being on T.V. Kind of stands out in a crowd as it is." Hellboy was seven feet tall and so bright red that it couldn't be missed. Getting him on a show would have been interesting but Toby also didn't want anyone going after HB for those reasons. "There's plenty of ghost work in Pandora though. Always something going on." Wasn't that always the case though? Always something going on in every corner of the box.
Toby was still smiling and she walked along with Michelle at an easy pace. Even if her ears were tuned for more trouble and her eyes slid along the trees without commenting. "Ghosts a normal thing back in your world?" Maybe there was a reason Michelle was here. Whatever it was, Toby wanted to keep up the conversation. It would help if anyone creeping up behind or around them thought that Toby was too distracted to be paying attention.