Author Topic: Lanterns and Mystique  (Read 47 times)

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Offline Malkavian Riddler

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Lanterns and Mystique
« on: June 15, 2019, 08:36:06 AM »
Bao led Chtahzus'aak out of the temple gardens and towards a covered rickshaw - it was pulled by a moped and could seat two. Bao looked towards Zeus with a secretive smile and hopped into the vehicle, shifting across to make room for him. The driver was a Chinese man dressed all in loose-fitting black clothing, and when he saw his mistress he bowed deeply before hopping onto the electric bike. He waited for Bao to tell him their destination and he sped through the streets - the small engine made no sound but he rang the bell constantly for others to get out of the way.

They reached Shogun House, the tallest building in Chinatown with pagoda-style roofs every third floor until the eighteenth, where it finished with a curved roof and Chinese dragons at every upturned tip. Not that either Bao nor Zeus would be able to see that from their position on the ground.

She stepped out of the rickshaw and moved with Zeus into the building, the lobby magnificent and with a chi-style flow, with shallow teardrop-shaped pools of water, spherical shrubbery, oval coffee tables and a curved reception area. Bao ignored the few people milling around, including the staff, and took Zeus with her to the elevators where they were swept swiftly upward to the penthouse.

There she had an assistant greet her, who she addressed as Jiang. Bao was told her dress was laid out on the bed and then she stepped into the elevator and left them in private. The penthouse was one large room - not taking up the whole of the building upstairs, but one of four rooms - Zeus would likely know this from being spatially aware. They could see her bed, a larger than normal king-sized bed, with a pretty silk blue material draped over it.

Lan Bao touched Chtahzus'aak's hand for his attention before heading for the bed, removing her robe and letting it fall to the floor in a green puddle. The scroll was in her hand even as she continued to walk, naked, smooth and with fluid movements, to the bed. Once there, she pulled on her Qipao dress over her head and adjusted it before turning around - the scroll had vanished in the process.

"Shall we?" she asked, gesturing to the side where her balcony awaited. The furniture was low and tasteful, the style of her penthouse was minimalist though the wall panels were split into fabric above dark wood - and the fabric was a rich red that showed varying scenes of herons. It gave the effect that her penthouse had more in it than what it actually did.
Digital: Of this chalice, I do drink
Lan Bao: Of this harvest, I do reap
Cain: Of this instrument, I do strum

Online rainshadowck

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Re: Lanterns and Mystique
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2019, 03:44:27 AM »
There were a few points in their journey to her penthouse that he considered closing the distance between them, carefully keeping the thoughts deeply hidden out of habit. 

The first time was during the ride in the rickshaw, their legs touching as the driver pulled them noisily to their destination.  It was a bit too cramped for his liking and he wouldn't do anything to her while others could observe them.  However, he found himself imagining how he would loom over her, pressing her small form into the seat, and trace her slender neck with his large hand.  The demon was still and silent during the ride, watching the surroundings go by while making a mental map of the area to distract from her body beside him.  Though, he did occasionally glance sideways at her, a subdued smile on his lips.

The second time was in the elevator.  Chtahzus'aak quietly absorbed the building's layout when they entered, the people they passed, the decor, and the exits.  He murmured a compliment about the pretty lobby, but his thoughts were elsewhere.  When the doors to the elevator slid shut, his mind wandered to pushing her roughly against the wall so he could feel her body against him as he greedily took her mouth in his.  The demon made no move to indicate what was on his mind as he stood beside her with arms crossed casually across his chest.  He waited for her to lead the way out of the elevator.

Her hand on his drew his attention from taking in the room and he gave her a quizzical look.  His eyes widened as her robe fell and he allowed his gaze to trace appreciatively over her skin and the liquid way her body moved through the space.  Whatever reaction stirring in his body was contained.  This was her game now.

By the time she turned to face him, habit had him averting his eyes respectfully even though she had clearly wanted him to watch her dress.  He missed the disappearing scroll.  When she addressed him, his eyes found hers then briefly glanced over the blue silk containing her body.  His response was a nod and a smile before he moved with her to the balcony. 

If there was one thing that the demon appreciated the most about the room it was the view from the balcony.  He went directly over to the edge and leaned against the railing to take in the sight of the city below. 

"This makes me want to take to wing."  He shared quietly with her. 

Offline Malkavian Riddler

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Re: Lanterns and Mystique
« Reply #2 on: Yesterday at 08:58:22 AM »
Bao offered a smile before she looked down at her neighbourhood, her people - not a single tourist among them. The Lantern Parade was just for Chinatown and its usual inhabitants, to those who understood its culture and beliefs. The streets had been cleared, no cars were moving below, though there were a few electric rickshaws or scooters zipping quietly through the space - stragglers hurrying to their location before the parade began. She could hear the rest of the city beyond, their beeps and rushing cars, but here there was an air of anticipation. The crowd that lined the sidewalks were silent.

And then, a roar of joy from the next block and the first glimpse of bobbing light. The first part of the parade rounded the corner after a full five minutes of listening to cheers of delight, and then Bao and Zeus could see the first wave of entertainers. Forty acrobats in shiny gold suits performing pyramids and other human-made structures on the fly, even as they walked. From where Zeus and Bao stood, high on the eighteenth, they would mostly see a moving golden mass of bodies forming patterns - it would look like a living creature. Some patterns were very obviously for those who were on balconies looking down at the parade, for a bird's eye view showed them what looked like morphing golden snowflakes. Walking in front and behind the acrobats were people holding different coloured lanterns on sticks, so that the street lit up with a rainbow hue. There were floats and musicians and Chinese Dragons, all broken up by hundreds of lantern bearing folk, creating a river of multi-coloured light through the streets, and the cheering that went with it.

And then Chtahzus'aak heard gasps and applause, more cheers, as entertainers on fire danced in the streets. Very obviously fire demons. And there were others - all of Bao's kin were in the parade, the Kuei Jin using their talents to show their citizens how powerful they were, that they were worthy of being protectors and guardians. They were respected and loved and feared all at once, and Bao could hear it in the hysterical note of their cheers. It was grand.

"Now is the time, Chtahzus'aak, when you can do what you wish," she said, looking down at the parade at its fullest and busiest, everyone was on the streets.

Bao looked first at Zeus and then closed her eyes briefly to centre her Jade Shintai, then, she crouched like an Olympic sprinter ready to put their feet on the blocks, then leapt. Her jump took her high into the air and then across the parade to the roof of the next building. She turned and grinned at Chtahzus'aak, waving and gesturing for him to follow. She ran across the thin line of tiles, leaping from roof to roof like she was in a platform game.
Digital: Of this chalice, I do drink
Lan Bao: Of this harvest, I do reap
Cain: Of this instrument, I do strum

Online rainshadowck

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Re: Lanterns and Mystique
« Reply #3 on: Today at 09:20:17 AM »
Chtahzus’aak watched the sight below with great interest, not quite knowing what to expect at any given interval.  He thought it would be like any other human celebration and parade, though with a specific cultural flavor given the location.  Needless to say, he was not disappointed.  The artistry was a delight and he was glad to have accepted her invitation.

When the fire demons displayed the splendor of their destructive form, Chtahzus’aak’s eyes widened in surprise.  He glanced at Lan Bao, then back at the scene below.  This was how they should be treated.  Their kind should be celebrated.  Feared, yes.  But in the way that one fears the might of Nature: with awe and reverence. 

Lan Bao’s words affected him in a deeper way than he expected, and there was a fierce look in his eye when he turned to face her.  He watched her jump, an almost childish smile on his face.

Should he?
This is her territory. 
She calls the shots here.
If fire demons could parade below…

Chtahzus’aak dropped the tension from his shoulders that had gathered with his excitement and took a step back from the railing.  Just as she touched on the opposite rooftop and beckoned him over to her, he shed his human facade.  He stretched his massive wings to their full length and flapped once before taking to the air. 

His eyes were only on Lan Bao as he followed her journey across the rooftops with impressively tight maneuvers.