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Ziran Chao

0 · 118 views · located in Pangaea

a character in “Pangaea”, as played by ༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ

Description


christmas gift for eva. do not steal/copy & repurpose. you have been warned.
also note to self that Xiao Wen Ju has been an active model for 10+ years so make sure you get that picture-to-picture age consistency.




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ziranchao_
32xxfemalexxchinesexxpansexualxxhuman witch with fey (魉/仙女) ancestry
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It never occurred to Ziran that she would take over the business, but it was always in the back of her mind. Being the middle of three children (and the only daughter), she expected to inherit nothing aside from taking her of parents once they retired. Both were hardy in different ways, her father a stalwart authority figure and her mom, a tenacious and guile woman. Chen Hao might have run the coven, but Rui Xiao ran him. Ziran took after her mother naturally.

Image is always at the back of her mind and control at the forefront. Her graceful stride and elegant casting exude effortlessness while the certainty behind her words leave little room for criticism which is just the way she likes it. Beneath her curated exterior are sleepless nights, migraines, and hours on the elliptical. She's the woman that needs to have it all. She needs to be the smartest one in the room, the strongest in the building, and look pretty while doing it. However she's none of those things, at least not inherently. All of Ziran's skills originate from the hard work and dedication that she's poured into her branch of magic over the years. Medicine is her passion, not because she's good at it, but because it's something only she can do. Da Xiang, her older brother, was focused on taking over as the leader of the coven and her other brother, Vic, was (is) too immature to be more than a career student. Years of irresponsibility left her picking up his slack and she knew that if he took over the business he would run it into the ground. Rather than risk that possibility, she took matters into her own hands.

Taking on a sizable loan from her father, Ziran opened a new branch in Ariosas, the first in the region. A handful of corporations dominated Ariosas' marketplace and she wanted to break the mold. It wasn't a hit at first due to the ample number of conventional healers; however, Tian Guan Pharmaceuticals (天官藥品) found a niche market among those looking for more "natural" ways to heal or if traditional methods didn't work. In some cases, Tian Guan's prices were cheaper than their competitors. Aside from being affordable, her shop offered exotic (sometimes contraband) ingredients and she was willing to work with small businesses to boost one another. Business cards for realtors, handmade soaps from forest sprites, and baked goods drew attention from tourists while fostering good will in the neighborhood. Building on her previous connections, she continued shaking hands with larger and larger figures in the food and beverage industry and soon, the pharmaceutical one as well.

Her base grew to include health gurus, socialites, and tech bros hoping to jump on the latest trend of alternative medicine. Suddenly, "TCM" was the panacea and all those people who wrinkled their noses when they passed by the shop clamored for goji berry tea and cupping sets. That wasn't to say she invented the herbal tonic (potions were common across all schools of magic), but the allure of the wooden drawers and satchels of dried herbs added a sense of exoticism.

After a few years, Ziran paid back her family in full and flew back to China to discuss the future of the coven. Now that their father retired, Da Xiang would be the new leader while the family business would be decided at a later date. The night before the inauguration, Vic confessed to her and their older brother that he needed help. In an attempt wrestle control of the family business away from Ziran, he stuck a deal with a Money Demon. In exchange for seven years of prosperity, he would pay the demon back with seven of his blood. If he didn't, the demon swore to steal a month of his life for every day that he didn't repay his debt. After years of squandering everyone's good will, drawing a contract was the only way for him to prove that he deserved the still-contentious position of Tian Guan Pharmaceuticals's owner. In his mind, all of the money he donated to coven was worth more than the branch Ziran opened in Ariosas. He begged them to find a loophole, exorcise the monster-anything to keep him from spilling blood.

Ziran had to laugh. Not only did Vic lie, but he broke the tenets of the coven. He endangered everyone and burdened his siblings with his ill-conceived bargain. She was done rescuing her brother. Traitors didn't deserve her help. Unfortunately, Da Xiang pointed out that if they didn't help, Vic would act recklessly. It wasn't worth punishing the rest of their family just to punish their brother. They estimated that he would have twenty years left assuming he fulfilled the contract by the end of the month; however, it wouldn't be a simple task. Neither of them were well-versed in exorcism magic nor could they find anyone powerful enough to vanquish a monster of that caliber. Their only option was outsourcing a mediator. After a few phone calls, they arranged a meeting to summon the demon and void the contract.

Negotiation came naturally to Ziran whose silver tongue eased the demon's hostile disposition. Between the mutual deprecation of Vic and the endless grievances the Money Demon had with humans, their motivations soon became clear. It relished in her brother's downfall. They loved watching Vic beg for mercy as his life toppled over. She knew it wouldn't be swayed by his tears nor would it fall for Vic's excuses. Instead she appealed to the demon's maliciousness. Humans had a short lifespan; their lives were a blip compared to that of a demon. Why shorten Vic's life when the demon could continue savoring her younger brother's misery? Suffering was a meal best savored and accelerating his death was too merciful. Humans ought to be punished for their greed so what better way than to spectate from afar. They could rebuke all of his successes, leaving him in the same position he was before: resented, shamed, and (she had to hold back a smirk) single. The demon cackled heartily before shaking its head. It couldn't survive off of schadenfreude alone;it needed sustenance. With a lick of its lips, the demon offered a single alternative: Ziran's womb. If she could bear its child then the demon would not only void the original contract, but become the new patron of their coven. Before Vic could accept, Da Xiang stepped forward. He would shoulder half the debt. Instead of taking a month from Vic each day, the demon would siphon two weeks from the both of them. Despite Ziran's protests the three of them sealed the contract in blood.

It wasn't fair. The callous side of her screamed at Vic, asking why he couldn't take responsibility for once, but Da Xiang held her back. He reminded her that he wanted to help her for once. Since flying back from China, Ziran has thrown herself into the world of exorcism and shadow magic. Whether by sword, tome, or hire she's resolved to save her brothers and the future of the coven.

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So begins...

Ziran Chao's Story