Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

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Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by fuyumin on Wed Jul 22, 2015 11:05 pm

The old scooter roared and squeaked its way along the mountain trail, shadows from the leaves above scattered across its brown paint. The young woman seated atop was scowling, brows furrowed in concentration. go run get away faster faster behind you something big something bad

Breaking free of the Outskirts felt like the break of open air over one's head after surfacing from deep water. She let out a slow breath, and eased up on the throttle. The scooter's engine dropped to a satisfied purr, its rider wincing apologetically.

"I know, Friday, it's rough. We've got a lot to do ahead of us though." She patted the headlight set between the handlebars and pressed on. The city wasn't as comfortable as the forest anymore, but even the tall structures around here were better than... whatever that was. She was passing an academy to her left. Could she maybe fit in as a teacher? No, she'd feel awful if there were student casualties. Better press on.

Further down the street, the compass clipped to one handlebar started to whirr. Its face flipped just as she felt a tingle down her spine - the crystals whirled around the inky blue face, then pointed the way. She grinned broadly and turned sharply, back towards the mountains.

This way, there was no sense of looming, of being watched. Of great, hungry power. The closer she got, the stronger the pull of the ley-line hummed in her body. It made her teeth itch and her hair stand on end. At the end of the trail there was a building - a temple, old but well-maintained. She moved her goggles up onto her helmet and popped both off of her head, curls falling out and spreading like dandelion wisps. She cut the ignition and kicked out the stand, adjusted the pack on her back, and proceeded towards the temple, jaw set with determination.

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by Damascus on Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:47 am

A large stone staircase led upwards through the woods to Ryuudou Temple, which sat at the top of the hill. Just past the temple gate was a middle aged man with short blue hair and scruff on his chin. He hummed to himself as he swept dirt from the path, while to young children with blue hair played nearby. He looked up as Fuyumi came through the temple gate.

"Hello there, young lady! What can I do for you today?"

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by fuyumin on Thu Jul 23, 2015 5:02 pm

She glanced once more at the ley-finder now in her hand, watching the crystals swirl around each other across their tracks, vibrations pushing into her palm. She wondered if the monk or anyone else could feel what she felt on these grounds.

She looked up at the man, locking her eyes to his. "Are you the head priest?"

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by Damascus on Thu Jul 23, 2015 5:14 pm

He chuckled softly. "Not quite yet. My father is head of the temple, but I do most of the work around here. My name's Isshin Ryuudou."

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by fuyumin on Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:17 pm

"May I see your father? I have something important to discuss with him."

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by Damascus on Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:35 pm

"I suppose so. I'll take you to him." He waved for Fuyumi to follow him, then pausing to address the children chasing each other around the yard. "Issei! Reikan! Behave while I go talk to Grandfather!"

He led Fuyumi into the temple proper and into a back room, where an elderly man sat quietly sipping tea.

"Father. We have a visitor that would like to speak with you."

The elder turned his head and squinted, as though peering through a dense fog.

"Ah, hello young man," be finally croaked. "What can I do for you?"

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by fuyumin on Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:50 pm

She knelt in front of him, tucking the hem of her skirt underneath her legs. "My name is Fuyumi Inoue. I've come to Fuyuki on very important business, and while looking for a place suitable to carry out my research and activities for the coming year, this temple happens to be the ideal location for what I have planned. Therefore..."

Fuyumi bowed forward, planting her hands on the ground at each side, hair bouncing and bobbing wildly in the air. "Please let me stay here at the temple!"

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by Damascus on Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:19 pm

The elder raised his eyebrows in surprise, though his eyes remained as squinted as ever.

"Stay at the temple, you say?" He paused to take a long sip of tea, smacking his lips and savoring the taste. "That's quite a request. Ryuudou tradition is that only men can stay in the temple." He smacked his lips again. "May I ask what kind of important business brings you to Fuyuki?"

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by fuyumin on Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:21 pm

"You can consider me a man, if it would make it easier." She lifted herself back up, remaining on her knees, and idly scratched her cheek.

"Mmm... you wouldn't know about the Holy Grail War, would you?"

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by Damascus on Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:25 pm

"Can't say I do. A war, you say? Sounds serious."

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by fuyumin on Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:29 pm

She waved a hand, tone upbeat. "Oh no no, it's not like a normal war. At least, there are fewer combatants. The only people that fight in it are Mages, and only a few. That's why I came to Fuyuki, I got these symbols on my hand! They're called command spells, and it means I get to summon a heroic spirit and fight in the War!"

Fuyumi raised her hands to fluff out her hair with a reassuring, almost haughty smile. "Also, since I'm a magus, I can make sure your land and family are safe, and I promise to keep all of my affairs out of the way."

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by Damascus on Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:39 pm

The elder's gentle smile faded, and he looked more seriously at Fuyumi. He stood up and nodded at Isshin, who bowed and left the room.

"Girl, you're using a lot of words that I don't quite understand. Holy grails, command spells, mages. I don't know exactly what you're saying you are involved in. Ryuudou is an ancient Buddhist temple, over 400 years old. This is sacred ground, which we are dedicated to protecting. Whatever protection you say you can offer, I cannot allow someone to bring conflict to our doorstep.

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by fuyumin on Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:45 pm

Her eyes widened. "400 years... wow! Even my family's temple is only almost a century!"

She sighed, pensive. "I don't want to intrude or deny your wishes... but one way or another, all of Fuyuki could be swallowed up by the War. If you really don't want me here, I don't blame you. This would just be an extremely practical and secure place for me to be, and could be beneficial for the both of us. Is there anything that could change your mind?"

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by Damascus on Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:59 pm

The elder scratched his brow and stared pensively at the cieling.  "To Buddhists, war is akusala -- unskillful, evil.  Sometimes we fight to defend our nations, home and family. This is not 'wrong.' However, participating in any act of war that sows the seeds of future harmful karma is still akusala. We must try their best to avoid any kind of violent act."

"I bear you no ill will.  But I'm afraid I cannot let you stay here if it may bring danger to my family."


Last edited by Damascus on Fri Jul 24, 2015 12:35 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by fuyumin on Fri Jul 24, 2015 12:03 am

She sighed and slumped with a pout. "I understand. Good day, and thank you for listening to my request." She stood and walked back towards the gate, unfolding a city map from her pocket. Should she have lied? No, she only would've gotten into trouble later. Maybe the northern suburbs would be more accommodating... She would miss the tingle of the ley-line, though...

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Re: Prologue: Brokering Negotiations

Post by Damascus on Fri Jul 24, 2015 12:20 am

As Fuyumi walked back down the mountain path, the elder shuffled to the door to watch her go. Holy Grail War? Mages? There was a lot to think about. For some reason, it all sounded familiar. He thought back to when he first took over as the head of Ryuudou Temple, sixty years ago. World War II was about to begin, but there were rumors of battles in the streets of Fuyuki even then. And for some reason, as he had meditated, he felt the strange presence of something dark throbbing under the temple.

He coughed and rubbed his brow again. If this young lady was telling the truth, the city was about to become a dangerous place to live. He'd have to take extra care to keep the temple protected.

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