Ch59 – You Can’t Disown Me, I’m Renouncing You!
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Thanks to the two ladies' interruptions, Jonathan hasn't actually had a chance to get very far in the check-in procedures over at the self-service kiosk. Please disregard the fact that most of the interruption was in the form of him being doubled over in laughter at the creative insult-compliment hybrid that was sent Lucas's way.

Lucas, being the oversized man-child that he is, sticks his tongue out and blows a raspberry at Miss Masher before turning his back to her and going over to check on Jonathan's progress, if it could properly be called that.

Behind him, she snorts and stalks over in the direction of the glasses-wearing woman. Once she's in close range, she starts a low conversation with the other woman.

As Lucas leans over Jonathan's shoulder, it's his turn for a dismissive snort.

"What, did you stop and take a nap when I wasn't looking? Uhh, let's see, what should it fall under..." As Lucas looks over the various options available for entering in your reason for your visit, Jonathan reaches up to push his hand to the side.

"Don't! You'll... Um, you'd probably break it." As Jonathan interrupts Lucas's pending destruction, Miss Masher barks out a loud laugh from across the room, resuming her quiet dialogue after a short pause.

"Okay, okay, fine. But seriously, do people come here for all this nonsense? You'd think they wouldn't bother..." As Lucas muses out loud he goes to lean on the little privacy wall next to the kiosk, but promptly stands upright again after it makes a loud creaking sound from the pressure.

"It... It really is a lot... Oh! Familial changes? Uhh... I guess I need to start with being disowned..?" While Jonathan is quietly wondering out loud, Miss Masher makes a pleading whine at the woman behind the service counter, who seems to finally cave.

"Fine! Fine. Guys, just cancel out the check-in and come over here. Not like Mash would let me work on anything else right now anyway." As the harassed woman admits defeat, Miss Masher lets out a whooping cheer and fist pumps in the air twice. From the enclosed counter next to hers, there's a brief snort of laughter.

Jonathan pauses for a moment, seeming rather surprised that an actual person is going to be working with them. Before long, he snaps out of it and cancels out what portion of the check-in he had actually accomplished so far.

As the self-service kiosk is located at the opposite end of the large room, they have to go past the four other service counters before getting to hers. Three of them have service bots manning them, though they appear to be in a sleep-like standby mode.

The service counter directly next to the glasses-wearing woman has a pale man reclining in his chair, proudly displaying the soles of his black leather dress shoes as he has his feet kicked up onto his side of the counter. All of his attention is on the tablet resting against his thighs. Occasionally a few long strands of bleached blonde hair fall in front of his eyes before seeming to tuck back behind his ears once again on their own to rejoin the rest of his undercut-styled hair. There's a bowl of popcorn on the counter next to his legs, occasionally a few pieces of its contents will leisurely float over to his waiting mouth, seemingly of their own volition.

The trio continues past his counter, going completely unacknowledged by him.

Miss Masher had stepped aside a bit to make room for both Lucas and Jonathan to fit at the woman's counter, but she most definitely does not move far enough to give them any privacy. Lucas does his best to try to ignore her, but it's rather challenging, considering she's openly staring at him.

'I'm intimidated in a completely different way than she probably intends. One creepy stalker is enough, thanks. Is she gonna randomly jump out of trashcans or manhole covers to challenge me to a fight from now on?'

[With how oddly specific that is, I'm going to assume it is another reference to your previous world. The more things you mention from it, the more confused I get.]

Lucas only deigns to give 427 a mental laugh before turning his attention back to the task on hand.

"Ah, hey. Uh, thanks. Appreciate the help." As Lucas falls into an awkward greeting, he briefly makes the mental connection that the employees seem to have a dress code of a white button-up shirt with black slacks, further confirming that Miss Masher probably doesn't actually work here.

The woman behind the counter has just finished closing a nearby filing cabinet drawer that she had stuffed a rather full folder into. As she sits up once again she brings over a wireless keyboard from a nearby stack of binders. Setting it down in place before her, she leans forward and taps a spot on the desk twice. A small slit opens and a very thin translucent green screen slides up in front of her, slightly off to the side.

"Well then, what brings you here today? Mash, give the poor man some room. Goodness." After she addresses Lucas, though her gaze does go over Jonathan as well, she scolds Miss Masher without even looking at her.

With a small "Hrmph" the scolded hoverer squats down and turns her attention to Willy, reaching out to pet him. A few ear rubs later, she goes to play tug of war, finally noticing what the toys in his mouth are.

"Oh my god, is that Mind Flare? Bwahahaha!" She firmly grabs the mini Mind Flare's legs and holds them in place, letting Willy tug to his heart's content. He goes to drop the other two toys, gives her a clear bark in acknowledgment, and then gets a good toothy grip on the faux supervillain. His four little paws slide against the tile flooring as he uses his whole body to try and make it budge, to no success. This doesn't serve to deter him in any way though.

With the battle maniac distracted, Lucas is able to breathe a little easier. After clearing his throat, he finally gets to business.

"I figure there's a few steps to go through first, but I'd like to go about adopting this brat over here." As Lucas exposes his tsundere tendencies to an increased audience, he is answered with a blank stare from both the woman behind the counter and the one crouching nearby. Jonathan's basically the only one to give any active reaction as he looks away shyly for a moment before he manages to compose himself.

[…Did you forget what world you're in? People don't just casually adopt homeless kids, at least not here.]

'Oh shit, right, uhhh...'

Clearing his throat again, Lucas leans forward towards the protective glass of the enclosed service counter, lowering his voice with a bit of a conspiratorial tone.

"To tell you the truth, he's my sidekick, and we both hate his parents. We don't want them trying to mess with our org at all, and getting to spite them at the same time makes it even better than just killing them." Now that Lucas phrases it in a way that locals can understand, he's greeted by a huge grin on the face of the woman behind the counter and a raucous laugh from Miss Masher.

"Now THAT is the kind of petty I can get behind. Perfect idea, I love it. All right, so first you should renounce previous familial ties to cut off any connections they could try to claim..." As she starts typing away with a speed that looks borderline enhanced, she trails off speaking when she goes to reach over for a mouse she hadn't actually brought over. Pausing to awkwardly clear her throat, she reaches off to the side and just uses the wireless mouse where it is, on top of a random book.

[...That was a good recovery on your part. I'm honestly impressed, apparently, you're fine with twisting the truth a little, unlike your inability to convincingly lie.]

'Heheh, it's pretty much the truth, I just left a few details out.'

"Tch, no not that one, renouncing, not disowning." As she starts going through the extensive lists of potentially applicable forms, Jonathan flinches once when she says the word "disowning" but it is thankfully unnoticed by anyone else.

[Well, that's certainly a perk for being the one to submit the paperwork. They can't prove they're the ones that kicked him out, so that's a little bit of an ego boost for him.]

'Heh, small victories can still be pretty satisfying.'




Lucas kills this chapter: 0

Lucas total kills: 7

Lucas deaths this chapter: 0

Lucas total deaths: 10

Lucas current GDV: 8.9

Lucas's fame level: 2.5* (Mostly just local)

Lucas's hero suspicion level: 1* (Only highly paranoid people)

Jonathan kills this chapter: 0

Jonathan total kills: 5

Jonathan deaths this chapter: 0

Jonathan total deaths: 2

Jonathan current GDV: 1.92

Jonathan's fame level: 1.75* (Just local)

Jonathan's hero suspicion level: 1* (Only highly paranoid people)




Little character theater:

Jonathan is frozen in place as it sinks in that this is really happening.

Willy is still scrambling against the immobile chew toy, his tail wagging so much it's nearly a blur.

Lucas wouldn't ever admit it, but he's a little hurt that Willy is playing tug of war with a strength supe other than him.

427 is busy scanning the contents of the cluttered yet organized enclosed service desk, she has some interesting books he previously didn't have any data on.

Author, clapping their hands in front of Jonathan: Jonathan, hey, Jonathan! Wake up! You're gonna have work to do soon! Also, [name redacted] is now my spirit animal. Optimal power usage, for sure.

Mr. Quacks, proud of Jonathan for pulling one over on his shitty parents: Quack!