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Kiba Bayushi

There's too much intrigue in this story... (wip)

0 · 203 views · located in Edo Japan

a character in “Tsukiakari”, as played by XianEvermor

Description

Image






[img]IMAGE%20OF%20CHARACTER%20HERE[/img]

The world in which we exist is naturally apathetic: an object that's not acted upon is content to rot where it is. Our existence is the result of a huge series of chain reactions. Every action a ripple; every choice affecting every other choice in a never-ending cycle where larger ripples cancel out the smaller ones. There's no point in acting small: those that don't make ripples may as well not exist. That's why, when I jump in the pond, my fat ass will make waves which won't be ignored.


Normal || Drunken Lullabies | Flogging Molly ||
Angry || White Knuckles | Five Finger Death Punch ||
Emotional || The Tragic Truth | Five Finger Death Punch ||
Heist || Thrift Shop | Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, feat Wanz ||
Battle || The Walker | Fitz and the Tantrums ||
Master Sword Battle || If I Fall | Five Finger Death Punch ||






[img]IMAGE%20OF%20CHARACTER%20HERE[/img]
♔ || Name || ♔
Kiba Bayushi

♔ || Nickname(s) || ♔
I wish I had a cool nickname, or like... an alias... like "Okami Shiroi" or "Fang." You know, something that sounds intimidating. Maybe in another life...

♔ || Race || ♔
Human

♔ || Specializes In || ♔
Human of Brigands

♔ || Age || ♔
24

♔ || Gender || ♔
Male

♔ || Sexuality || ♔
I like chicks, bro

♔ || Face Claim || ♔






[img]IMAGE%20OR%20GIF%20HERE[/img]
♔ || Height || ♔
5'10''
♔ || Weight || ♔
210 LBS
♔ || Hair Color || ♔
Black, with very... very... very slight, hardly noticeable graying about his temples. (It's a touchy subject for him)
♔ || Eye Color || ♔
Blue / Green (Heterochromia of the eyes)
♔ || Skin Tone || ♔
Tan
♔ || Build/Appearance/Preferred Clothing || ♔
Kiba is a little squat for his frame at a mere five feet and change, broad through his muscular shoulders and barrel chest... in fact, Kiba is rather shaped like a barrel. His upper body is toned and muscular through years of hard labor and training, and he'd have a rock solid six pack... if you could pick it out beneath that layer of flab. He's not fat, by any means just... round about the middle. Kiba was one of those kids that stopped growing up, and instead began to grow out as he reached the end of his adolescence, and it's a losing battle he's fought for his entire life. It was a rather disappointing turn since his father was basically a human "V" and looked like he could kill a man with a folded napkin. He probably inherited his shape from his mother who was a little plump, politely speaking of course. Needless to say, however, Kiba is built like a tree, and strong as an ox.

His face is a little round about the cheeks, though not heavyset and he keeps a kind of rugged handsomeness, with that perpetual scruff he sports. His black hair is shaggy but not long and hangs in his eyes on occasion. His eyes are striking, almost unforgettable and probably his most prominent feature, since heterochromia of the eyes is rare in Japan: his right eye is as blue as a clear sunny day on the beach, and his left is green like a freshly polished emerald. On his left shoulder, running the length of his arm is a tattoo of ten demons, each holding a unique blade. The demon at the very top wields a sword looking startlingly similar to Kiba's Swordbreaker, and has a long, straight scar running across it.

Kiba normally wears a black kimono with loose sleeves and a hood, belted at the waist by a worn leather belt with a silver clasp, white breeches and sturdy leather boots. A second strap crosses his back, loops over his right shoulder and then ties in to the buckle at his waist. Hung on the back of this harness is the baldric for his unusually shaped broadsword, the tip of which pokes out over his right shoulder and the handle, which is held in place by a leather snap hangs against his waist near his left hand.






[img]Image%20or%20gif%20here[/img]

♔ || Weapon || ♔
Swordbreaker: The sword itself was obviously crafted by a master smith, and though the scabbard has seen much wear, the blade is immaculate. The weapon is nearly forty inches in length from tip to pommel, with a grip designed for one handed use with the option to wield it with two. At the top of the handle is a simple cross guard with a trigger indentation for his index finger. The blade itself is three inches wide and made of the highest quality steel and has a gentle curve to it to facilitate slashing. It has a sharp point that can be used for stabbing, but ends in a wicked looking hook designed to trap and disarm opponents. The unsharpened edge has a serrated finish that will swiftly ruin an opponent's weapon.

Underneath his tunic he's been known to wear a lightweight vest of steel lamellar plates. Rumor has it, he also keeps a length of steel chain weighted at both ends wrapped around his right forearm.

♔ || Abilities || ♔
"My special power is the ability to turn any mundane object into a weapon of serious inconvenience!"

[img]Image%20or%20gif%20here[/img]
♔ || Personality || ♔
Charming, a little brusque, a hit with the ladies, or he'd like to think so. Kiba is what happens when you give the gift of gab to someone who has trouble tying his metaphorical shoes in a social situation. He would LOVE to think that he has a silver tongue, but his real skill is finding exactly the wrong thing to say at exactly the right moment to get himself in trouble. As you can imagine, this has lead to a long history of bar fights and duels. Being a fine purveyor of the brew hasn't helped much either, rather it's led to more than one fine night of reflection in the drunk tank. He's quick to champion a cause, and always tries to do the right thing, but more often than not ends up causing more chaos than was intended. Sometimes he firmly believes that he was born under an unlucky star...

[img]Image%20or%20gif%20here[/img]
♔ || Likes || ♔
*Beer!
*Women
*The very occasional friendly bar scrap
*Defending the weak
*Contests of strength
*Fine crafts, forging, sword making
*The simple things...

♔ || Dislikes || ♔
*Girly drinks... (Only women and effeminate men drink that fruity stuff)
*All this supernatural hocus-pocus...
*Sneaking
*Hiding in the shadows
*Being quiet in general

♔ || Talents || ♔
Kiba isn't a master swordsmith, but he's right handy with a hammer and a forge and can repair damn near anything. The weapons he's made are of good quality, great for bounty hunters, soldiers, or generally anyone who uses a standard run of the mill weapon. A master crafted katana would be way beyond him. He's ambidextrous and quite strong, and if you count being able to chug a pint of beer in under fifteen seconds as a "special talent," there's that too.

Unorthodox Fighter: Used properly, his broadsword can trap blades, spears, and shields, pull them out of position, or even break them. His sword is also not his only weapon: Kiba weighs more than two-hundred pounds and is mostly muscle. He fights using his entire body, including his mass to his advantage. Fists, elbows, knees, his head, crushing an opponent into a wall with his body, anything is fair game... anything, meaning any object that's not nailed down. Just like it says in his special power, any object Kiba can pick up is suddenly a dangerous weapon. That chair you're sitting in is pretty innocuous, until you figure out that it has four pointy ends and a big flat surface to use as a shield. Nice ones are even braced along the bottom for stability and can easily trap, disarm, or otherwise incapacitate an enemy. Plates become dangerous exploding projectiles and that table isn't just for eating on: It's good cover, and the nice round ones roll at a surprising clip! Kiba may have been trained in traditional martial methods by an ex-imperial guardsman, but he refined his fighting skills in pubs and alleys. Fighting in cluttered, awkward spaces is his specialty.

♔ || Flaws || ♔
*(Functioning) Alcoholic

*Lost Love: Kiba pretty much has a one track mind where his father's swords are concerned. If any information comes up concerning the 9 remaining demons or the 9 remaining master swords they stole from his family he MUST pursue it, even if it ends up being a red herring. Trying to stop him from doing this is the easiest way to end up crossing blades with him.

*Tendency to become existential and over-analyze the meaning of existence while drunk... so pretty much all the time.
*Kind of gullible... how do you think he ended up in this outfit anyway?

♔ || Fears || ♔
*Apathy: Doing nothing is tantamount to non-existence.






[img]IMAGE%20OR%20GIF%20HERE[/img]
♔ || Family || ♔
None to speak of

♔ || Romantic Interest || ♔
Um... Well I'm not embarrassed to admit that Akiko is pretty fine. She keeps telling me she's a man, but she's just playing hard to get.

♔ || Bio || ♔
"I'm gonna be a great warrior! A hero who defends the weak and 'whack, whack!' kills the bad guy!"

"Excellent, Kiba... a great warrior needs a weapon," his father exclaimed.

"Yeah, a mighty sword and a sturdy shield!"

"Here is your weapon, hero," his father said, thrusting a heavy stick into Kiba's hand.

"But, it's a stick," Kiba whined with a note of obvious disappointment.

"Yes, a stick. Every hero starts somewhere," his father explained as a length of rope with a small iron weight stuck on the end whipped around the end of Kiba's stick and it was suddenly ripped from his grasp, leaving him with empty hands and a startled look of wonder. "And when you can best this rope with your stick, I will give you the rope. When you can best the whip with your rope, I will give you the whip. When you can best the chain with your whip, I will give you the chain, and finally when you can best the sword with the chain, you and I will forge a sword worthy of a true hero together. Until then, you'll work this hammer at the forge: down on their luck heroes need to earn a living somehow and no son of mine will be a slacker!"

This was Kiba's childhood. He worked his body at the forge, learned metallurgy, proper care of his equipment and handy trade skills like shoeing horses, repairing pots and pans, and forging kitchen knives. In his free time he studied with his stick. Kiba's father was once part of the Imperial Guard, and since he was little Kiba wanted nothing more than to be a great soldier and a hero like his dad... because what good father isn't their child's hero? His father found love fairly young, and retired once his wife was with child to pursue a safer career... though not before he absorbed years of training and service at the guard. He hadn't any non-martial skills, save some natural strength and an impeccable work ethic which was good enough to land him an apprentice position with a local swordsmith.

Kiba was raised in this manner, training his body and muscles at the forge from a young age, and honing his hand-eye coordination with the hammer at the anvil. Smithing was hard work, and Kiba grew up to be a promisingly large and strong youth, much larger than the other kids his age... though his height stopped increasing in his early adolescence and the other children quickly outstripped him. Instead Kiba's girth increased in spite of his many hours of hard labor at the forge. Nobody dare tease him, however, since he could pick up and throw a fifty pound bag of sand fifteen yards over his head. As his skill with the stick and his father's strict training increased, he eventually graduated to the rope, which took him years and many black eyes to master. It wasn't until his late teens that he graduated from rope to whip, and then whip to chain... ah that age they start letting fresh young whelps into bars. The training and work weren't enough for Kiba, and in spite of being a little heavy, he always had plenty of energy to burn at the end of the day and chose to refine his art in bar brawls. There's no substitute for experience as they say. When Kiba was twenty-one he finally graduated to the sword, which Kiba designed himself to fit his unique fighting style, and his father forged from the finest materials as project to finally graduate to master swordsmith.

That year he and his father forged ten unique master blades, including the Swordbreaker. One day while Kiba was out getting supplies, his father's shop burned down with both his parents inside. Although the investigation turned up nothing to suggest foul play, the ten master blades went missing and Kiba knew that the fire couldn't have been hot enough to destroy all of them. After a year of fruitless searching turned up nothing, Kiba turned to the drink. He'd all but given up until he saw something in a half-drunk haze: a figure with a scabbard that had a strong resemblance to one of the swords his father had made. What else could he do but follow, somehow manage not to be detected even though he was positive stealth was completely out of the question (he stumbled into a chicken pen at one point and was chased about by angry roosters for what felt like hours), and find ten demons.

Ten demons, each with one of his father's master swords.
♔ || Other || ♔

So begins...

Kiba Bayushi's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: [NPC] Bartender Character Portrait: Amaiko Soranagi Character Portrait: Misaki Akhito Character Portrait: Hiruko Character Portrait: Mizuki Matsushita Character Portrait: Hachiro Takeaki Character Portrait: Kasumi Character Portrait: Akiko Character Portrait: Kiba Bayushi Character Portrait: Zalenetsu Character Portrait: Rin Fukushima Character Portrait: Kichirou Matsumoto Character Portrait: Kanika Character Portrait: Naomi Asai Character Portrait: Ankoku Character Portrait: Kumorimaru Character Portrait: Tsukiko
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Demon | of | Revenge




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Laying, bored as usual, in the center of the Tsukiakari shrine, Ankoku, the demon of revenge, stared stultifyingly at the tree's slowly beginning to lose their charm, blossoms, and leaves. Fall was approaching along with winter following afterwards. Not that she cared. Ankoku hardly paid attention to the seasons. In fact, she was quite apathetic about many things after all the years she's lived her dull life, 'It's always the same thing, over and over again.'
She thought tiredly to herself. Lately, the individual prayers that she had gotten were all stories about how someone's loved one was killed by a demon or another human, and she, Ankoku, had to go hunt down the killer and take care of them herself. She was named the demon of revenge for a good reason, but sometimes, she wanted a more interesting request than the same stories over and over again.

Ankoku glanced over at the donation boxes, ones where people tossed any extra money in hopes that their luck of their wishes being granted would be increased. Out of boredom, and curiosity, she got up, walking barefoot, as usual, on the smooth wooden floors of the Tsukiakari housing until she reached the front of the shrine. It was no surprise how quiet it was and how no one was in sight of the shrine. They were, even during the war, still quite unpopular.

She walked by every single demon, spirit, and their great god's boxes until she reached her own. A few coins, as expected. Ankoku was still quite a minor demon, hardly known, hardly powerful. But what told her that she was still there and remembered was when she got prayers. Of course, they were mostly from bad people. What good person would want revenge? No one.

Just as she scoffed at how poor Tsukiakari really was, she realized that she was getting another prayer, 'My brother was killed in this war. A demon killed him on the battle field, one with a large head and a tiny body. It was tall and intimidating. Please take revenge for me, Ankoku.' Ankoku frowned with annoyance at this and wiped the memory clear from her head, deciding not to take that job. As unsatisfied as she was, she'd rather be that than have to replay the same story all over again for the hundredth time.

'It's just another damn prayer. Who the hell cares if I don't take revenge for them either? Honestly... humans are so tiring... We don't have to do all their work. If they really wanted revenge, they wouldn't call on a demon to do their bidding.' Just like the gods who had unleashed hell, Ankoku, too, despised most humans.

Ankoku was orignally about to walk away, seeing as there was nothing of interest to her there until there was a chime of the bell; the bell belonging to Tsukiakari's shrine. That meant that there was a prayer for the whole entire group. The whole entire Tsukiakari group. Quickly, she ran back to the largest saisen, the donation box, which obviously was for the Tsukiakari group, and found a prayer written across the board, how they are usually written for the group.

''The demons are spreading to my village lately, and they're terrorizing everyone. It started with just a few pranks, like breaking pots or tripping the kids, but it's gotten more violent. People are dying and we can see them clearly now. They're wiping out the whole entire village. Our men, including myself, can't stop them, and the women and children are being killed. Please, Tsukiakari, help us.'

It was from an adult male villager, and this made Ankoku grow eager. Rudely, as usual, she called throughout to those who were still in the area of the shrine, "Off your asses, fools! Get over here! We finally got a prayer." She felt the excitement rush through her while she yelled. Hell, she could care less if anyone was bothered by her yelling at this point.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kiba Bayushi Character Portrait: Kichirou Matsumoto Character Portrait: Ankoku Character Portrait: Kumorimaru Character Portrait: Tsukiko
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The intricacies of the duel were often lost to those who weren't trained in the art of iajutsu dueling. Iajutsu masters could strike their opponent down with only their gaze, without even having to lift a finger. A master, he was not, so Kiba dare not even move to wipe the sweat dripping from his brow and stinging his eyes. Could he feel paralysis creeping into his bones as he locked his blue and green gaze with his opponent's disconcerting amber one, or was he imagining it? His opponent's thumb twitched, sending a jolt of electricity down his spine.

He must have flinched involuntarily, since he could feel the weight of her intent now crushing down upon his shoulders. Her piercing gaze widened, and a tattooed hand darted with lightning quickness to her belt. That was the moment he knew it was over, even before he felt here eyes lock straight onto his weakest point.

"Check," she intoned gravely, snapping a knight which she had taken from him earlier onto the board. It clacked down with finality, and Kiba knew he only had one or two moves before all was lost. He mustered the fiercest gaze he could under the circumstances and locked eyes with her once again. Try as he might, however, she was unreadable, even after they sat for what felt like hours in unblinking contest.

"Well?" She asked.

"I'm thinking," he replied.

"You're stalling," she accused, twisting one corner of her plush red lips into a sly little grin. That was all it took to smite the weakest link in his armor and send his fierce exterior crumbling. "Watch your mouth," she commanded afterwards, right as he was about to open it to swear.

"How did I end up like this again?"

"You made a bet," she informed gravely, her eyes narrowing as if she knew where this conversation was headed.

"I think I've sweat out most of the booze and come to my senses by now... besides, you can't hold a drunk man to his word..."

She didn't reply, only held out her tattooed hand palm up to him, the light glinting off the tips of her blue painted nails.

"Dammit, Zahn..." Kiba swore, deflating like a balloon. He dug one of his weathered hands into a pouch hanging from his belt. "One of these days I will beat you," he promised as he slapped a shiny rock into her hand.

He felt her amber gaze slice through him once again for a fraction of a second, but she held the rock up, and as the light hit it just-so, it shimmered brilliantly and projected a rainbow onto her face. After a long, tense minute she broke out into a big smile, exposing her pointed canines and closed her fist around the rock.

"When you have something else shiny, feel free to come back and try again," she sang merrily. "By the way, your babysitter is calling."

"What?" He raised an eyebrow at her, but after a moment off in the distance he could hear the bell from the Tsukiaki shrine give a single tone. He couldn't help but look over his shoulder in the direction of the shrine. It didn't seem to matter how far away he was from that place, he could hear whenever that bell chimed... rarely as it did. He turned back to spear Zahn with a suspicious look. She'd already vanished with nary a sound, though he could feel her giggling at him from... someplace.

"Don't meddle in the affairs..." Kiba trailed off, noting some words of wisdom his father used to tell him with some chagrin, and yet whenever he found a shiny trinket to gamble (emphasis on shiny and not necessarily valuable), he always made his way to Zahn's Shogi board.

Kiba used his last few yen to buy a bottle of saki for the road with an air of disappointment and made the long trek back to the Tsukiakari shrine. He passed Kichirou in the hall talking to his brothers on the way. Kiba usually greeted him with a hearty hello and a stiff shoulder slap... that is except when he returned from one of Zahn's thorough lashings. He unhooked a skin of wine sealed with wax that he'd "bartered for from a travelling merchant" (read: stolen, probably from highwaymen who'd taken it from said merchant) and thrust it into Kichirou's hands as he passed.

"Not to my taste," he grunted sullenly and tromped heavily up the steps into the shrine where he leaned his considerable weight against the frame in the entrance and listened to the announcement. He didn't reply: the steely look in his eyes at the mention of demons causing trouble was enough for Ankoku to know he was in... when it concerned demons, he always was.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Mizuki Matsushita Character Portrait: Kiba Bayushi Character Portrait: Kichirou Matsumoto Character Portrait: Ankoku Character Portrait: Kumorimaru Character Portrait: Tsukiko
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Demon | of | Revenge




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Not too long later after Ankoku's rude remark came the first person who heard her shouting across the shrine of the Tsukiakari; Kumorimaru, the demon of the dead and wind. Fellow demons, ones who Ankoku found to be wise, were always a good thing, to her, since now days, all the demons were just killing machines with less than a brain, “It would seem that there is an interesting task ahead, does it not, Ankoku? I myself do not have much to do. Alas, the main box has been relatively empty, has it not? This task does sound interesting- I shall help, if I am allowed.”

A smirk spread across Ankoku's face. Perhaps she wasn't the friendliest person or politest person at all times, after all, she was a demon, but she never turned down company when it was offered openly to her, "Doesn't it? Killing my own kind is a taboo, but they're all such idiots. Its because of demons like them that my people are degraded to be such low lives." She scowled a bit, but brought composure back to herself and responded, "The more the merrier, I suppose."

Soon afterwards, in fact, less than a mere few seconds from their small conversation entered the human, Kichirou Matsumodo. He was one of the few humans in that world, besides the others in Tsukiakari, that Ankoku could deal with, as she despised humans. He passed over, and said, "My deepest apologies. I have a bit of a...business meeting to attend to shortly. I hope you understand."

Ankoku stared at him blankly, then suspiciously but shrugged, "Too bad. You'd be missing out on a mission, seeing as this place hardly gets any prayers, even in this time of war..." Ankoku turned back to reread the prayer on the board behind Tsukiakari's saisen, "Well, if this business meeting is really as important as you make it to be, do what you wish." What exactly was a business meeting? Ankoku surely didn't know, even after all those years of being alive.

“Is there a need to yell?” Ankoku turned around to the cold and icy voice of Tsukiko, spirit of storms. If Ankoku were concerned with her appearance, she'd be jealous of the girl. However, she wasn't, "What in the name of the moon is this?” She questioned.

"Prayer." Ankoku said, not wavering her eyes away from the slowly fading words. She chuckled a bit when she added, "Surprising, isn't it? It'd been ages since someone's actually requested our help."

“My assistance will be provided.” Tsukiko said.

"Good, we'll be at a full-house in no time. That'll make this a little easier, since it is, after all, a whole village of demons we'll be taking care of." Honestly, Ankoku could care less if it were a pack of wolves, or taking place as a soldier in the war, or something as silly was trying to find a lost cat. She'd been used and called upon far too many times for revenge, each having the same story, that she was sick of it. All she wanted to do now was to take a new request, and luckily for her, the one she was staring at now had arrived to her ennui. Once more, she glanced over at Kichirou and muttered, "Shame."

There was a small crack in the wooden floors behind the group which Ankoku had caught with her sensitive ears. She turned, and there was Kiba Bayushi, another one of the few humans Ankoku didn't mind. In fact, he may have been her favorite of the few in Tsukiakari. Then again, what exactly was a favorite? "Not drunk are you, Bayushi?" Ankoku snickered.

Ankoku didn't speak for a bit, just looking at him silently. There was a look in his eyes which Ankoku easily saw through and said, "I guess that means you'll be joining us as well then, am I correct?" When she looked back at the board, the message had already faded to words that one could only see if they squinted hard enough. Ankoku moved her black hair out of her face and said, "The sooner we finish this, the better it is for the few remaining survivors of that village. I suggest we all get ready now before departure." She stated, then paused, "And someone find Matsushita. I'm concerned that girl's getting her nose in those books again... She, too, may miss out on this opportunity." Ankoku sighed and began her walk behind the Tsukiakari shrine to get to her own room, "I'll be fetching my sword in the mean time."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kiba Bayushi Character Portrait: Kichirou Matsumoto Character Portrait: Ankoku Character Portrait: Kumorimaru Character Portrait: Tsukiko
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The world tilts; his head tilts, a wind blows, annoyance grows. “My deepest apologies. I have a bit of a...business meeting to attend to shortly. I hope you understand." Darkness- and then the figures come back to focus. Irritation flows, teaming in the air as death streamed from Kumorimaru. A shake of the head, a sigh from the mouth, another step backward for a better view. "Too bad. You'd be missing out on a mission, seeing as this place hardly gets any prayers, even in this time of war.. .Well, if this business meeting is really as important as you make it to be, do what you wish." Eyes flicker to and fro, distrust filled the air, from demon to human. “Thou,” He started, death filling the air. “Thou must learn that thy…” Colors dull down, spin around. “Thou must learn that thine attitude-“ The swish of cloth, a nonchalant look from Kumorimaru to Matsumodo. “-could earn thee thine death, human.” No more was the conversation, breath stilled and hearts pounding. His heart did not pound; a wind pounded against the doors.

Thump thump thump- A voice pierced through the wind- pierced through Kumorimaru’s fake heart. A twist, a turn, a white figure appeared ice cold- cold as ice. Frosted wind from the river, from the sky- no, from Tsukiko. His eyes flash, mirroring the coldness that flashed in hers. What had she said- the wind had blown too hard- what did she say? Tea? What tea? “Tea. Doth thou wisheth to have some tea?” Did she ask? No, no- colors swirled, a prayer appeared in Kumorimaru’s blank mind. “Drag my shop rival to Jigoku- oh demon! Drag him down!” A step, a thump. Nothing more. A shake of his head and the voice was no more. Foolish humans. He exclaimed, exclaimed in his head. Hath the race of humans fallen to a state- A figure in the doorstep, a drunken figure, falling over, falling towards the floor. Another step back, a jingle, a shake of the head; flowers fall to the ground, petals float to the ground. "Not drunk are you, Bayushi?" A shared glance with Tsukiko, a shake of the head.

Ankoku was gone. Revenge was gone- off to fetch its sword of death and anger. A wind blows- away with the drunken smell! A step forward back to corridor of darkness, a beckoning of the hand for the cold to follow. “Tea. Didst thou not want tea? Feet on the floor- cold, cold- slow paces leading towards a hidden room. Hidden in a corner right above the lake, right next to the lake. The slide of a shoji, the light steps on tatami floors- a soft gust of wind to blow flowers to the sides of the room, a beautiful path for a beautiful guest. Petals dance in the air as a pot flashes in the air then out of the room, into the cold waters of Tsuki-ko. “But is there time for tea, is there?” Swishes of color, his kimono patterns dance around before settling down, the question now spelled across the light fabric. Is there time for tea? Is there time for tea? Is- The pattern folds, a fire is struck, the pot placed not over the fire but on a drawer. “Doth thou wish to drink gyokuro? Sencha? Bancha? Matcha?”

Drawers opened, bags pulled out. Lined up on the ground, carried by a soft breeze. Another flick, another fold, two seats appear on the ground in place for the lady of the storm. “Or dost thou wish to drink Konacha? Hojicha? Genmaicha? Kocha? Or Oolongcha that hath come from China, the land of the Earth?” More bags of colors varying, fly into the air and down in front of the- was she there?- the lady. Cat cries, cat scratches, a sudden leap and bound onto Kumorimaru’s back did Hikaru do, sniffing his hair and licking his cheeks. A quick scratch under the chin, but Kumorimaru went back to his tea, his dearly prized tea. “Or Kocha? Sanpincha? Mugicha? Kombucha? Which doth thou wish to brew, fair Tsukiko, old friend of mine?” Big and small, colored with all colors, the small bags lined the ground. Fragrances filled the room; the pot still was held in Kumorimaru’s arms. His eyes shined, his smile faint and small- but another prayer hailed him once more, forcing colors to swirl once more and his skin to shed halfway. “Oh, youkai! O-,” A shake of his head- a jingle of a bell- Kumorimaru was back again. Hikaru glared at him with red eyes that changed back to black, claws sheathed, fangs hidden. Quickly, he was a flash as he sat on the ground, the chair creaking under the sudden force. “Which shall it be, hath thou made up thine mind?”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Mizuki Matsushita Character Portrait: Kiba Bayushi Character Portrait: Kichirou Matsumoto Character Portrait: Ankoku Character Portrait: Kumorimaru Character Portrait: Tsukiko
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Kichirou's response was met with a suspicous stare, but he kept his complexion. "Too bad. You'd be missing out on a mission, seeing as this place hardly gets any prayers, even in this time of war...Well, if this business meeting is really as important as you make it to be, do what you wish." As the demon finished, another supernatural being approached the group gathered. “Is there a need to yell?” it was Tsukiko. Her icy presence all but overwhelmed his sixth sense. After the spirit understood the quest, despite her hatred of humans, she accepted. The spirit then ran off with Kumorimaru, another demon. Which was the result of Ankoku leaving to retrieve her weapon.

Ankoku glanced at Kichirou once more. "Shame" The demon's disappointment was interrupted by the entrance of yet another member of the Tsukiakari. Kichirou had already passed Kiba on his way to the shrine and expected the man to arrive shortly. "Not drunk are you, Bayushi?" Now Kichirou glanced down at the bottle of sake in his hand. Kiba had handed it to him earlier when they met on the way here. Making the decision of giving sake another try to impress his taste buds, Kichirou lifted the bottle to his lips. As the vile substance entered his mouth, he could feel the buds on his tongue recoil and express their revolt to his brain. It took but all of his self control not to spit the disgusting liquid onto the ground. The sting of the sake running down his throat to Kichirou's embarrassment made him cringe in a most embarrassing way.

Kichirou then made his exit, going to find the girl who wasn't present with them. "Like Ankoku stated, reading, no doubt." The man walked towards the dwelling of the younger female. "Surely she had heard the chime of the bell... he thought. "But however powerful her love of books is, that is no excuse for completely ignoring the more important task at hand." Kichirou approached the room that Mizuki dwelled in and paused for a moment in front of the door. "And of course, she acts 'mature' all of the time." With that thought, Kichirou swung open the door without bothering to warn the girl of his presence.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Mizuki Matsushita Character Portrait: Kiba Bayushi Character Portrait: Kichirou Matsumoto Character Portrait: Ankoku Character Portrait: Kumorimaru Character Portrait: Tsukiko
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”Not drunk are you, Bayushi?” Ankoku asked him. He noted the very slight snicker in her voice, which just caused him to loft an eyebrow.

"If you've got to ask, you must not know me very well by now," he answered haughtily. "I've had plenty long enough to walk it off, so no I'm not drunk... not drunk enough at any rate, considering there's a whole village teeming with filthy demons to slay," he laughed, digging a small skin from his belt and taking a draft of what smelled potent enough to be shochu before capping it and hanging it back on his belt. He smacked his lips with satisfaction.

"Aaah... there's the sauce. Amiright?" He grinned broadly around the room before it started to falter... considering the present company was made up of mainly spirits and demons. Kiba pressed his lips shut and did his best not to say anything else, although he knew it was inevitable: he was going to say something stupid before this was all over, and he'd probably end up in a fight with someone.

Ankoku probably wouldn't care, in fact she was probably the only demon he regularly got along with aside from Zahn. Although he couldn't quite peg Zahn for being a demon, he knew she wasn't quite human. A weaker minded individual might have called it "divine providence" that he met Ankoku, but Kiba didn't believe in all that supernatural hullabaloo. He made his own destiny: that's why it was completely coincidental, non-suspicious happenstance that Ankoku appeared in his life with the means to facilitate his revenge right after he prayed to someone, anyone who would listen for the strength to carry it out himself.

Yep... flukish stroke of luck. Something like that will probably never happen again.

Then there was Kichirou. Kiba held in wicked smirk as he glanced back in time to see the kid try and choke down a swallow of the "gift" he'd received. Priceless. Kiba never got tired of that, and instead flashed the "I got that just for you" smile. Kichirou immediately fell into the "little brother" catagory as quickly as they had met, not that the poor kid needed any more of that with the two oafish larger brothers he already had. But, as the closest thing he had to a friend, Kiba would move mountains to come to Kichirou's aid. Not that it mattered, since Kichirou routinely used that wicked tongue to talk him into doing all kinds of ridiculous stunts. How do you think he ended up taking "dueling" lessons from Zahn?

More like repeated, grueling, and agonizing defeat at Shogi, since she refused to instruct him until he could beat her at that silly game. Now he had to find another shiny bauble to pay her with... since his pride wouldn't let him back out.

Kiba flicked his blue eye over towards Kumorimaru and sucked air through his teeth (as quietly as possible). He couldn't help but think the guy was a wierdo in addition to his usual prejudices against demons. To say he was creepy would be something of an understatement... but then again maybe that was the point. And of course Tsukiko was as frosty as ever. The two made a perfect couple.

He didn't really have an opinion about Mizuki, who had yet to show up but somehow Kiba knew she would be coming. Mainly he couldn't shake the nagging feeling that, for some reason, she really didn't like him. Couldn't be his personality... she probably just didn't like guys that were overtly masculine, he thought, as he rapped his belly once with the palm of his hand. He felt the booze slosh to one side, which made the room feel like it was tilting for just one moment. Afterward his stomach uttered something that could have been mistaken for the howl of an enraged beast, or the savage growling of some dragon.

"Guess I better eat something before we go..." he muttered with some slight embarrassment and shuffled towards his room.