Author Topic: Sword Maiden  (Read 496 times)

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Offline Black Philip

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #45 on: September 21, 2019, 06:53:16 AM »
Jake's question was not directed at what results might be found. He was clear on the fact he couldn't control what was found. He was asking more about the process. However, he didn't seek to belabor the point. Instead, he decided as long as he didn't have to leave the blade here he would comply. He hoped she wouldn't feel such a condition was purposely directed, but he wouldn't even trust Lisa-Joe to hold the sword for more than a minute. The only two other people who'd even held it in recent years were Sabrina - a person Jake called his mother - and Lisa-Joe - his closest and oldest relationship. What was that saying from the drag television show Sam liked?

It's not personal. It's drag

In this case it was, it's not personal, it's swords. However, he kept all of those thoughts to himself. "Okay, let's do it," he replied. "I am curious to discover the truth behind it."

He would follow her out of the sparing room, taking one last look.
Be a sadist. Now matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
- Kurt Vonnegut Jr.


Nox Jake Benny Kyle Lisa-Joe James/Jimmy Tess Tyler Freddy Drew Flick Apep Ari Lacy Mithras

Offline Malkavian Riddler

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #46 on: September 21, 2019, 10:49:47 AM »
Once Jake gave his okay, Bao nodded her acknowledgement. She closed her eyes and sent a mental alert to her closest brethren as to who she was after. They would collect the man she needed and she didn't need to push any further. Once that was done, Bao opened her eyes and turned to Jake with a girlish smile, pleased that she would be learning more about his weapon and that there was another favour bestowed between them. The exchange of pleasantries and gifts always allowed for a good bonding between relationships.

"He is being summoned. He lives in the building but he likes to present himself formally, so as he gets ready we likely have some time to chat."

She said 'chat' but what she really meant was 'for you to inform me about what happened at the meeting', but would not ask.
Digital: I drink from the poison chalice
Lan Bao: I reap the harvest of my people
Cain: I am the instrument that vampires play
Shan: I take what is mine and what is yours

Offline Black Philip

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #47 on: September 21, 2019, 11:01:16 AM »
Jake looked around the room as Lan Bao sent her message, not understanding exactly how it was done. For vampires it could've been through the blood bond, or through telepathy. There was still so much he didn't understand. Jake was happy for the subject change for the moment, even if it meant delivering less than good news. Still, there was an alternative.

"Yes, I would like to discuss the meeting we spoke about last time," he began, sounding as controlled as possible. "While there was some interest in expanding your rights, the conversation was struck short by two of the leaders. They felt as though your territory is too small for a full district. There were some, as I said, who favored talking about it more, but we were in the minority."

Jake scanned Lan Bao's face for reaction. This was hardly what she'd hoped to hear. "I personally don't see why they got a say, considering one of them appointed another, and the leader of the north just started going around telling everyone he was."

He let his last comment sound suggestive, like he had more to say, but he wanted to give her a chance to reply. If she were angry, he better hear it now.
Be a sadist. Now matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
- Kurt Vonnegut Jr.


Nox Jake Benny Kyle Lisa-Joe James/Jimmy Tess Tyler Freddy Drew Flick Apep Ari Lacy Mithras

Offline Malkavian Riddler

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #48 on: September 21, 2019, 11:10:30 AM »
Lan Bao had expected this and she could have kept her face a mask but she let her disappointment show, if only to reveal to Jake that his failure had affected her. There was no anger because she didn't have all of the information.

"So two leaders do not wish to even discuss the matter," she repeated, a brow arcing before it returned to its usual position. "Which two?"

When Jake had said 'some' favoured talking about it more, she couldn't think as to who they would be. Chtazus'aak was optional as one, but 'some' implied more. Who was open minded about her? She'd met none of them. She would ask about them next, depending on whether Jake showed her loyalty in his answer, or if he would be secretive and show loyalty to the others.
Digital: I drink from the poison chalice
Lan Bao: I reap the harvest of my people
Cain: I am the instrument that vampires play
Shan: I take what is mine and what is yours

Offline Black Philip

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #49 on: September 21, 2019, 11:21:14 AM »
Jake had promised to do exactly what he was currently doing. He would go no further than reporting what happened, and decided he would do his best to keep his personal prejudices out of his truth telling. There might be a time for Jake to tell Lan Bao that he thought Zoheret was a superficial, self-absorbed, histrionic, but that day was not today. Right now, he wished to look like a leader.   

"The lady of the North West, Zoheret was not in favor. Her opinion seemed mostly influenced by what she saw as the math of the matter. I trust that her stated reason is likely her actual one. While she's capable of being duplicitous, she's glaringly easy to read when not plotting. The leader of the North, Saraekeil, seemed to vote with Zoheret all night. I suspect an alliance."

He knew Zoheret had secrets, and for important things she knew to keep her mouth shut. Jake was speaking for the moments when she wasn't in the know, and her motivations then became obvious. Her reason for voting for the election was technically a mystery, although Jake had a strong theory. Her reason for not supporting Lan Bao was more obvious.

"The leader of the east objected to the mere idea though. He made sure the whole topic was discussed for less than five minutes. When I called him out for it..." He chose his next words carefully. He didn't want to sound like a sensationalist or a gossip. "...he acted childish."

There. That was a good balance.
Be a sadist. Now matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
- Kurt Vonnegut Jr.


Nox Jake Benny Kyle Lisa-Joe James/Jimmy Tess Tyler Freddy Drew Flick Apep Ari Lacy Mithras

Offline Malkavian Riddler

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #50 on: September 22, 2019, 09:33:35 AM »
When Jake spoke of Zoheret, Lan Bao was thoughtful. She did not know the beautiful dark angel personally and recognised that she had been one to have made the transition from Oligarch to District Leader. By Jake's words, it sounded as though the new risen leader in the north also objected to her leadership. He was one she'd not met either. She'd expected to be dismissed, for Jake's plan not to go through. What leader willingly shares control of the helm? Only someone who did not know which direction to go.

When Jake phrased the old vampire's objection, calling him 'the leader of the east'... was that a joke? She looked carefully at him but saw no humour in his eyes. How peculiar for him to slip in such a way. The ancient one's rejection was not a surprise. She'd heard of his family and others like it so his resistance to her rise was expected. Jake McCloud's slow-built alliance with her was the opposite of that; it was a huge surprise considering he'd personally fought in a battle against her kin.

And then Jake commented that the ancient one had been childish? She didn't understand what could cause that word past his lips when speaking of someone so great in age. She wondered what he would say of her.

"I am curious what your next step in the process will be," she said, thinking back on his words about his recognition of making her District Leader of Chinatown. It was possible he would do it unofficially, as an announcement. Much like the dark angel had claimed his territory.



Digital: I drink from the poison chalice
Lan Bao: I reap the harvest of my people
Cain: I am the instrument that vampires play
Shan: I take what is mine and what is yours

Offline Black Philip

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #51 on: September 24, 2019, 09:49:32 AM »
Jake found Lan Bao's overall reaction to be accommodating of his misstep. Was the other shoe going to drop, or was she really interested in continuing their relationship? Would she run to Ben and ask what deal he could give her? That was likely, and while he didn't know what Ben would promise, he knew what he could. He hadn't long to think on this issue - what was to be done with the Kuei Jin - but he'd found himself drawn towards one action and was willing to follow his instincts, for now.

"Well, I say we move forward despite them," he answered, waiting a minute before explaining his point more fully. "All they can really do, is deny you a seat for official, city wide votes. They can't really manage how I organize my district, including who I let lead a part of it. We can say you rule Chinatown, and that I, as a DL, offer protection and permission to operate. Otherwise, lead as you've led now, and call yourself whatever title best suits you. District Leader if you want that official feeling, but I think Mistress of Chinatown has more appeal. I won't interfere in your rule, but you can also count on me for support. As to Chinatown's ability to voice concerns to the other leaders, I can always have you come in to the meeting as an honored guest of mine, and you can present Chinatown's opinions and needs to them in that fashion. I will also directly support your needs as an ally. Two states, working as one, for the betterment of all."

He laid out his vision for a free Chinatown, where Lan Bao only saw Jake's status as a protector. If the others tried to push her around, or tell her to stop operating alone, Jake would intervene and support her. Otherwise, she was free to rule Chinatown as she saw fit. It wasn't much different than what they had already. The only change was an open endorsement and the ability to work together.   
Be a sadist. Now matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
- Kurt Vonnegut Jr.


Nox Jake Benny Kyle Lisa-Joe James/Jimmy Tess Tyler Freddy Drew Flick Apep Ari Lacy Mithras

Offline Malkavian Riddler

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #52 on: September 24, 2019, 04:20:17 PM »
Her eyes flashed momentary anger. She averted her gaze to one of her displayed weapons as Jake tried to sell her on what she already had. Mistress of Chinatown, indeed. He didn't say anything of interest until the very end, when he laid out their working relationship and spoke of how he would grant her access to the other leaders. A shallow offer after the grand promise he'd made. However, it would be foolish to burn the bridge between them. He was in a position of distraction, with the election and the dark angel only recently taking over the north, and Chtazus'aak only recently returning. She would have to visit him as he'd visited her twice already. Thinking of the demon brought a secret smile to her face.

"I thank you for your candour and honesty. Prosperity makes friends and adversity tries them." She bowed, giving a formal feel to their meeting.

She heard footsteps on the other side of her vault and she moved a hand, gesturing to one side. The door opened and an elderly Asian gentleman stepped through. He was dressed in a traditional Chinese suit, navy in colour with loops instead of buttons keeping the jacket closed and intricate gold threading on the jacket and pants cuffs. He approached them and offered a deep bow.

"Keung, thank you for coming so quickly. This is Jake McCloud. He would like information about his sword."

Keung bowed again, not as deeply this time. He smiled and bowed once more before reaching both hands out to accept Jake's sword.
Digital: I drink from the poison chalice
Lan Bao: I reap the harvest of my people
Cain: I am the instrument that vampires play
Shan: I take what is mine and what is yours

Offline Black Philip

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #53 on: September 25, 2019, 04:24:40 AM »
Jake had more yet to say, and found Lan Bao's statement to be confusing. It wasn't the more surface meaning of her words. That was easy enough to understand, but what did she really mean? Was she saying they could no longer prosper, or that their friendship - or did she mean alliance - was now in a state of adversity? He didn't have time to analyze her words, but he stowed them away to look at later. He would ask Benny for help. The rat loved solving riddles.

When the oracle came, Jake bowed respectfully, and then handed the sword over in the way that was accustomed, extending the blade out with two hands, his own body dipping in respect of his weapon. He cleared his mind of his political doubts, now curious to hear about his blade, and strangely friend. He'd wondered so much about the sword, but since he had only Mithras to ask before he'd never been able to discover much. Sabrina had unlocked a portion when she told him it was made of draconic magic, but what other secrets did it hold?

He was happy to share this moment with Lan Bao, and decided then he shouldn't give up on their plan so easily. If even one district leader backed the idea other than him, then it was an issue that would have to be debated. He might be able to appeal to Sabrina's humanity and kindness, or perhaps Zeus's mild interest could be stocked into a more electric one. Perhaps Ward law could be helpful, and provide a structure to them. The real question, was should he tell her his new plan? He debated surprising her with better news when he had it, but decided that he should ask for her help. It was her district after all. Why should he do all the work? That part of their conversation would come after the oracle had finished. Jake returned his focus to the wise master before him.
Be a sadist. Now matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
- Kurt Vonnegut Jr.


Nox Jake Benny Kyle Lisa-Joe James/Jimmy Tess Tyler Freddy Drew Flick Apep Ari Lacy Mithras

Offline Malkavian Riddler

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #54 on: September 29, 2019, 09:11:22 PM »
As soon as the elder man touched the blade, he jolted. His hand closed firmly around the hilt as his eyes rolled to the top of his head, showing most of the whites. Keung said a few things in ancient Japanese, none of which Bao understood, but she recognised the name Iesayu when the old man whispered it.

There was a lot of moaning and crying out before the clairvoyant's eyes returned to their normal state and he handed the weapon back to Jake with shaking hands. He bowed again and then unleashed a tide of Chinese at Lan Bao, speaking fretfully and gesturing to Jake.

"Thank you, Keung, you may rest," Bao dismissed with a smile. The old man bowed to each of them twice more before departing, looking more frail than he had when he'd entered. "So, he believes that your sword was forged with dragon blood and that if not bathed in blood during battle, then it will take from its owner." She looked from the blade to Jake with a mischievous glint in her eye. "Do you feel exceptionally tired, Mr McCloud?"
Digital: I drink from the poison chalice
Lan Bao: I reap the harvest of my people
Cain: I am the instrument that vampires play
Shan: I take what is mine and what is yours

Offline Black Philip

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #55 on: October 04, 2019, 06:53:47 AM »
Jake watched with careful awe as the seer preformed his craft, his own face locked in confusion at the unfamiliarity of what was being witnessed. Magic was still so foreign to him, Maria only joining his ranks recently, and Sabrina being rather conservative with her spell work. It was an interesting thing to study, and Jake decided he would ask his resident witch questions about seeing in the future. As the seer and Lan Bao spoke, Jake could barely contain his interest, a slight electricity behind the eyes showing as they darted back and forth. When the clairvoyant bowed, Jake did as well, and echoed Lan Bao's thanks to the old man.

Dragon blood. It was consistent with Sabrina's messaging, and explained it's unquenchable thirst. Bathed in blood was ominous, but the sword didn't feel evil to him. Then again, were vampires evil because they too needed blood?

"Not tired," he classified, "hungry. When I use it I find myself almost feeling starved afterwords. I probably have to consume double my normal amount of blood if I use it in a major fight, unless I draw blood of course."

This was all so fascinating. If he were human would he feel fatigue? Would it still take blood, or would it extract another form of life? "I wonder if you used it if you'f need more life force. Did he learn anything else?"

Jake's expression clearly hoped he had, a boyish excitement showcased to the new District Leader in front of him. 
Be a sadist. Now matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
- Kurt Vonnegut Jr.


Nox Jake Benny Kyle Lisa-Joe James/Jimmy Tess Tyler Freddy Drew Flick Apep Ari Lacy Mithras

Offline Malkavian Riddler

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #56 on: October 08, 2019, 12:05:48 PM »
The sword might have drawn from her when she'd shadow-fought with it, but perhaps not because it wasn't battle. The sensation was subtle, if it had.

"A vampiric sword for a vampire owner," she declared with a growing smile. How much she wanted it now for her collection - but mostly because of the sword's history. She would have to research it.

"Not all Keung's words made sense, such is the plight of seeing and being unable to direct one's vision. But he did say a name I am familiar with, and which intrigues me. He said Ieyasu." She checked Jake's face for a flicker of recognition. "I believe he was referring to Tokugawa Ieyasu."

She waited for Jake to react to this news, and then would come her offer.
Digital: I drink from the poison chalice
Lan Bao: I reap the harvest of my people
Cain: I am the instrument that vampires play
Shan: I take what is mine and what is yours

Offline Black Philip

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #57 on: October 14, 2019, 03:30:14 AM »
The first part of the name meant nothing to Jake, but the second one stuck out. Where had he heard it? Then he remembered his source, and his face visibly soured. Mithras. He'd told Jake all those years ago that someone named Ieyasu had given it to him as a gift. He let his face relax, and decided to explain his discomfort.

"Forgive me, but the memory of how I know that name isn't pleasant."

Hoping to change the subject, he decided to let his ignorance be fixed. "Who was he exactly? All I know is that he was a war hero in Japan during a great conflict there, the war of feuding states I think it was."

Her oracle had seen much, and slowly the sword's history was being revealed. Jake had no idea an offer awaited him.
Be a sadist. Now matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
- Kurt Vonnegut Jr.


Nox Jake Benny Kyle Lisa-Joe James/Jimmy Tess Tyler Freddy Drew Flick Apep Ari Lacy Mithras

Offline Malkavian Riddler

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #58 on: October 14, 2019, 09:41:46 AM »
Bao angled her head as Jake's expression shifted twice and he apologised for his emotional display. She gave a brief nod, thinking that he'd contained himself rather well, but obviously to him it must have felt exaggerated on his face.

"I know only a little more than yourself. He is famous not only as a war hero but as the creator of the shogunate. He was the first shogun. Perhaps the sword contains his spirit." Her greedy eyes found the blade, sheathed on Jake's hip. "Perhaps you would consider adding it to my collection for a price you wish to name?"
Digital: I drink from the poison chalice
Lan Bao: I reap the harvest of my people
Cain: I am the instrument that vampires play
Shan: I take what is mine and what is yours

Offline Black Philip

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Re: Sword Maiden
« Reply #59 on: October 16, 2019, 06:21:13 AM »
Jake was thankful for the new information, and decided to look into the history of this man a little more. Perhaps his sword was somewhere in history, waiting to be found. He didn't understand exactly what the shogun did, as opposed to the emperor, but was able to determine from Lan Bao's description that he was very important. He never understood why Mithras would've been given the shogun's blade as a gift. Mithras likely stole it. He never asked for anything.

Lan Bao's offer was unexpected, his eyes darting to the blade and then back to his host. He'd never considered parting with the blade before, and found himself unable to think of a price. The sword was his most potent and personal weapon. Then again, was he hiding behind it? Was its desire for blood fueling Jake's own? Jake had only one thing in his mind that would make him give up the sword, and he doubted Lan Bao could provide it.

"Forgive me," he said, sounding somewhat flustered. "I seem to lack imagination. I can't think of anything at the moment that would make me part with it. We share a bond, and I rely on it to defend myself."

He decided to test the waters with his desire. What was that old adage; questions unasked remain unanswered. "If I were to tell you that I was half a dragon, what exactly would you think I mean?"
Be a sadist. Now matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
- Kurt Vonnegut Jr.


Nox Jake Benny Kyle Lisa-Joe James/Jimmy Tess Tyler Freddy Drew Flick Apep Ari Lacy Mithras