Fairy Tail RP

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    The Food Chain

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 14th November 2020, 10:40 am

    WC
    835 words
    TAGGED
    @Mercury Arseneault

    Dear Tsubasa Kageyama,

    We, on behalf of StarChef Industries, hope that this message finds you well. Your LacTube channel has come to our attention not only as an exciting channel of your personal adventures, but also as one wherein you show off your baking prowess. We hope that you will be pleased to know that you have been selected as a guest judge for our National LacTube Competition: This Year's Bakers. We have carefully curated the competition and, in order to more accurately promote the particular audience that we intend to target to, we wish to invite a LacTuber as a judge and due to your particular unique skillset and videos, we have chosen you as a rising star in the baking world.

    In lieu of RSVP, please come to the Sheffield Warehouse District which can be found a short distance from Morgate Town, and find Warehouse 311A. For privacy purposes the warehouse district will be otherwise empty. We expect to see you tomorrow evening at 10PM and no later. While we will be pleased to work with you, please note that there is a strict filming schedule and lateness will not be tolerated.

    Sincerely,
    StarChef Industries Promotional Department



    Tsu re-read the message for the twelve thousandth time as he stood at the outskirts of the Warehouse District. He had given himself sufficient time to be there at 10PM and in his hoodie was his partner in crime but he had little else on him, except his method of transportation. His LacTube videos were mostly for fun and a way for him to express himself, as he had grown up relatively sheltered in the temple and had never really had a normal childhood, which one could argue explained a lot of his social awkwardness. Nevertheless he had never dreamed that it would actually lead to something, much less something to do with his baking prowess rather than his fighting abilities, the primary attraction to his LacTube channel and the videos that pulled in more than quadruple the baking videos.

    He had intended to arrive early at first, but then figured that the timing was so exact that he best arrive exactly on time in order to not mess with preproduction or whatever technical things were happening behind the scenes. He could now use terms like "preproduction" and "behind the scenes" un-ironically and this secretly made him giddy as a schoolchild. Thus he walked slowly along the pathways between the warehouses, looking for any hint that may give away their intended purposes. "What do you think they use these for?" He asked absentmindedly.

    "Who knows? It's probably a filming lot for lots of other stuff," Ahab said. This had piqued his interest as well, but he was playing it much cooler than his more eager ally. He was laying on his stomach in the recesses of Tsubasa's hoodie but had pulled down the fabric enough that he could peek through and look at the surroundings as well. He, like Tsubasa, was looking for some hidden sign or clue that these places may have hid special sets for some popular film franchise or otherwise interesting program. Honestly to the both of them any kind of brush with fame would have been amazing, although it would have been icing on the cake for their general experience.

    At 9:59PM, Tsubasa arrived at the assigned Warehouse, 311A, and stared at it. There was nothing especially remarkable about it, not even a sign signaling that he had found the right place or that there was filming happening within. He figured that it was because of the prior mentioned privacy that things were so top secret. Taking a deep breath, he turned the knob and stepped in. Immediately he was hit with the overwhelming brightness of the lights in the room.

    The place was definitely built as a stage for a televised cooking production. It had several ovens, stoves and preparation areas fully stocked, cameras on dollys and tracks were stationed on one side of the room with rows upon rows of seats for an audience of at least a hundred. Along the other side was a long single table in front of three lavish chairs which were made up to look like royalty. There were oversized buttons before each chair which seemed to be part of some setup for judging or something else overly dramatic in true televised fashion. Beyond that there were staging areas and the rest of the warehouse was probably dedicated to the backstage part which was, likely, even more important than what was seen. It was truly made up to look like a televised set.

    Except there was no one there. Not a soul in the building.

    "Hello?" Tsubasa called out. He pulled up the message again to check that he had the time and everything correct. Everything checked out. Absently as he called out again and again, he walked towards the very center of the cooking area, the excitement within him beginning to shift into dread.

    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 19th November 2020, 9:32 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Mercury earnestly had no idea exactly how this was going to go down. Tsubasa was a bright kid, extremely talented in everything he put his mind to and always so chipper and easy going. The Ace thoroughly enjoyed his company, enough so that she had developed a bit of a bond with him and actually cared about his well being more than she did everyone else in the guild. They got along exceptionally well, had similar senses of humor and adventure, and to top it off he had a mind nearly as inquisitive as her own -- and just as sharp. He was a quick learner, too, which was refreshing. Mercury didn’t have the patience for slow learners, and thankfully most members of Silver Wolf were pretty scientifically minded. But, Tsubasa held himself above even most of his peers in that regard, and Mercury wanted nothing more than to see him succeed.

    Which was, of course, why she’d set up a giant, elaborate death trap for him today.

    Her reasons for doing so were her own, for now at least. It had been more than easy to set everything up, given her magic. A room full of metal and light and electronics had taken little more than a snap to erect, and from there it was just about putting in the bare minimum of furniture to give the place just enough authenticity to put him on edge without throwing red flags at him outright. Then, it had just been about luring him there. Luckily, that was also simple enough. Tsu was impressively attentive to his social media accounts, as well as to replying to the messages he received from fans and potential clients alike. A fake account had been easy to create, and thanks to Mercury’s own skill with electronics there was no way he’d be able to trace the message back to her, even if he got suspicious about the oddly specific instructions.

    He showed up right on time. Mercury grinned from where she sat in the central control station that she’d set up for herself. There were dozens of screens in front of her taking up nearly an entire wall, with a large console that sported an array of unlabeled buttons and switches. Each screen was dedicated to different rooms of various sizes that were each set up with their own special surprises. Her own room was fairly dim with lighting, most of the illumination coming from the bright monitors that filled the room. She sat lazily on a swivel chair, grinning at the front camera like a cheshire cat.

    Tsu walked in and immediately looked around, taking in the stage and the obvious baking set up. Though he was clearly more focused on the fact that there was absolutely no one around. Mercury waited patiently to see what he would do. He had a number of options to trigger the trap, as she had set up multiple trips around the main stage area. Really the only choice he did have was walking back out the door, as it had already been programmed to seal itself shut the second it had closed behind him. As he made his way toward the center of the room, calling out for anyone that might be around to listen, her grin grew. “Showtime..” she said to herself.

    She waited until he was standing right where she wanted and then pressed her first button. Suddenly, the floor dropped out beneath his feet, sending Tsu and Ahab both plummeting down about four floors through a steel paneled shaft in the ground. At the bottom of the circular hole was a grid of blue colored lasers, and there was nothing at all along the sides of the tunnel that he would be able to find purchase on to keep himself from falling through the grid. As soon as his body hit it, he was almost immediately stopped in his decent like he’d hit some kind of pocket of anti-gravity, floating in the beams of light that had stopped him from becoming a Tsubasa shaped pancake on the very hard looking steel floor below. Weirdly enough the lights seemed to have their own kind of gravitational pull that would make it difficult for him to move his limbs at all, like he’d been caught in a spider web. The light shifted and tugged until Ahab would find himself being pulled from the hood of Tsubasa’s jacket toward a small, squirrel sized hole in the wall that would quickly suck him out of sight, leaving Tsubasa isolated.

    Once the squirrel was gone, the grid deactivated and shut off, leaving Tsubasa to fall the remaining eight feet to the cold, hard ground. A panel slide out from the ceiling and sealed the tunnel above him, leaving him trapped in the room. It was well lit and circular in shape, with only a singular door that appeared to have no handle or means of opening it. Everything was made of metal: the floor, the walls, the ceiling, the door. There was no furniture in the room at all, and for a long moment he was met with silence and suspense as to what was about to happen to him. Suddenly, a couple small panels opened up in the floor in arbitrary positions around the room, revealing small nozzles that suddenly burst into flame, filling the room with heat and smoke as continuous streams of fire spat toward the ceiling. He would find that every minute, a couple more such spouts would reveal themselves, threatening to hotbox and burn him alive if he couldn’t find a way to get through the door.

    Meanwhile, Ahab’s quick journey through an airlocked tube would deposit him on a pillow in the same room where Mercury sat. She looked over at him, a pair of chopsticks hovering over the bowl of ramen in her hand. “Good evening, chief! Thanks for dropping in. You hungry? Got some ramen for you to eat, and some buttons for you to help me push.”

    WORDS: 1006 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 20th November 2020, 6:12 am

    WC
    1102 words 1937/3000 Minimum required
    TAGGED
    @Mercury Arseneault
    No one learns the secret name
    No one burns in the absent flame

    As often happens in stressful situations, everything happened all at once but also extremely slowly. It seemed as though the moment Tsubasa realized that there wasn't actually a program that wanted him as a judge, or if there was this wasn't from them. The entire thing had been conceived as some sort of set-up and someone was going to play a trick on him. At first he thought that it was Ahab, and so the moment that it dawned on him, the dread melted into a kind of jovial relaxation. "Good one, I guess," He said, "Definitely mean, but good,"

    Ahab looked at him with some confusion. "Yeah this wasn't me," He said. Before he could add any more the floor opened up underneath them. The two of them plummeted like stones with Tsubasa reaching for Ahab with one hand while trying to find purchase with the other. The walls were smooth as though they were freshly polished and the size difference between him and Ahab kept the two of them just out of reach. Just as Tsubasa gained enough sense to attempt to use actual magic to charge forward and grab his companion, the gravitational lights hit him and forced him to stop in place. With everything that he had he continued to reach towards the little flying squirrel as though his tiny little partner's life depended on it. For all he knew, it did. Tsubasa had always prided himself on being fast. This time, however, he wasn't fast enough.

    Before he could reach, however, the wall opened up and sucked in Ahab like a superpower straw. Tsubasa and Ahab simultaneously shouted each other's names as the wall closed back and Tsubasa was left to fall the last few feet. He had the presence to set a wave of energy with a swipe of his hand which kept him from accidentally breaking a bone on landing. "HEY," He shouted, going from a zero to a nine pretty much immediately, "YOU GIMME BACK MY RAT." He walked to the closest wall and punched it as hard as he could, his own stubbornness keeping him from feeling the pain at the moment. Nothing happened for a moment so he punched it again. And again and then kicked it and tried that again. Finally, a reaction.

    The floor opened up and tried to burn him alive. Leaping backwards with the speed that he wished he'd had just a moment prior, he narrowly escaped being a Tsu-flambe. "Hey!" He said, "Not cool! I mean— You know what I mean!" He had at least gathered that there was something behind this, but hadn't had the wherewithal or really the time to try to consider who it may have been. Whoever it was, however, he was going to say vaguely mean things about them. As he began to look for a way out of the room, he shouted, "Why don't you come down here and—" He was cut off by another jet of flame that burst out of the wall. "DANGIT!"

    Meanwhile in the secret control room, Ahab was deposited gently onto the cushion finishing whatever he had started saying with the term, "—Kick the shit outta your fuck!" He was not well versed in cursing, but his anger was apparent. He grabbed at the pillow and pulled it out from under himself as though to use as a weapon. As soon as he saw who had abducted him, however, his ears immediately went back signaling clear confusion. "Hey…" He set the pillow down with some hesitation.

    Next came the promise of food which, combined with someone he trusted, disarmed him completely. He scampered towards her and said, "I'll be writing a strongly worded letter to you after this. I'm guessing you have a plan with this." He took the ramen and sat on the control panel where he started to dig in. Looking out at the screens, seeing Tsubasa dodge the fires while screaming at the walls, he said, "Oh he big mad," Whether by accident or not, he leaned against a lever and flipped it downwards to use it as a reclining chair. "Whoops. I'm guessing that does something."

    As Tsubasa dodged through the fire jets making his way towards the round knotless door, a hatch in the top right corner opened and sprayed an almost aerosolized-like mist of flammable oil, which fucktupled the intensity of everything in the room. The gouts bursting from the flamethrowers seemed to expand rapidly, like pigs gorging on their favorite meal. Soon there was much more flame than anything else in the room.

    Tsubasa immediately felt the difference in heat, the intensity of which threatened to take him out immediately.  Rather, keeping his wits about him even if only at their end, he murmured to himself in a sing-song voice,

    "So you got a cooking fire,
    and you're starting to perspire.
    Water won't solve it,
    Oil fire can't drown.
    Take away its oxygen
    and it'll die down.
    "


    He made a ball with his fist and took a deep breath, before exhaling until his lungs were empty, using the last of it to repeat, "it'll die down." Then he opened his palm, revealing a small black hole in his palm. A miniature gateway to the void was more accurate, but it completed the same objective. Within this room of limited air and no ventilation, he sucked the blazing fire as well as the air out into the nether, killing the flames off quite quickly and taking away his own ability to breathe in the process. Now he had a very different problem, one with an arguably faster timer going. He snapped his hand shut to kill the black hole before turning around to face the other other problem. The door had no visible way of opening it, but it did seem to be a door. He merely needed to convince it to fulfill its purpose.

    With force.

    With the fires out at least temporarily (he couldn't guarantee something wouldn't reintroduce them into the room), he took the moment of freedom to run to the other side of the room then apparently straight up charge the door.

    Thankfully he was at least a little more clever than he seemed at face value, as he began to glide along the metal floor with his speed increasing, and actual energy covering his fist as he'd done when he fought that demon guy Samael, sending a force punch straight at the door with hopefully enough intensity to slam it open. Assuming it did, the first thing he would do was take a deep breath.
    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 30th November 2020, 4:57 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    As she had expected, Tsubasa was quite unhappy with Ahab being taken away. The younger man dropped hard onto the floor and immediately began protesting about his partner’s abduction, yelling for the green squirrel to be returned to him. The demand was made with a number of punches and kicks to the walls, which was appropriately timed to when the fire spouts appeared and started going off. Mercury simply watched patiently with her cup of ramen in hand, softly slurping the noodles into her mouth as she awaited Ahab’s arrival.

    The squirrel came bouncing out of the tube and onto the pillow with a string of curses that didn’t quite add up to anything coherent, but it was the effort and spirit that counted. The soft object was in his hands in seconds as though he intended to use it as some kind of weapon. When he realized he was not in any danger, and that it was in fact Mercury in the room with him, he gingerly set the pillow down with a wary greeting. The Silver Wolf Ace then mentioned food, and it was all Ahab needed to be pacified completely. He wasted no time rushing over to her side to collect his bowl, with a side comment about writing Mercury a strongly worded letter when this was all over.

    Mercury chuckled. “I think that’s fair. I look forward to reading it. And yes, there is a purpose to all this. Whether or not Tsu forgives me for it later is entirely up to fate, I suppose, but I like to think taking the time to keep you out of harm’s way will earn points in that direction. That, and the fact that I’m recording everything so he has it to put on his LacTube later. But really I’m just giving him a test to see how far along he’s progressed. There was no need to put you through all that though, and I’d like to see how he handles himself when you’re not there to back him up.”

    Ahab took time to get himself comfortable, pushing a lever down as if to make a chair for himself. It was only after the lever was pushed that he stopped to realize he’d probably just made things worse for Tsubasa. “Oh you know, just released a spray of flammable oil into a room that’s already on fire,” the lavender haired woman informed him innocently. And indeed, they could see right on the screen the effect it had, with the room now being filled with more heat and flames than anything else. The heat and smoke alone would have been enough to wipe out a lesser person, and it was apparent that Tsubasa was struggling but he was still up and trying to figure things out.

    In fact, it sounded like he was singing something to himself, though even with Mercury’s advanced technology it was impossible to hear the song over the pressurized jets of flame. He finally stood still for a moment and held up his hand, conjuring some type of energy. The sensors on her monitor started beeping and she rolled her chair over to the screen to check the readings. “Oooh… a vacuum to suck out all the oxygen. Very effective, Tsu! Not entirely wise but effective.” She kicked back over to her prior spot to finish watching as the flames all were completely extinguished from the black hole he’d summoned, leaving him without oxygen to breathe. He wouldn’t be able to survive very long in a vacuum, so she was interested to see what he planned on doing next.

    Apparently, that was simply to use what strength he still had to force the door open. Tsubasa tapped into another portion of his magic and used it to heighten his strength enough to punch the door open. The heavy device swung open with a loud bang, its hinges barely holding together enough to keep it from flying off onto the other side of the room, though it was now a bit lopsided where it was fixed to the threshold. Oxygen poured back into the room for him to breathe, and Mercury reached over and punched the button that deactivated the flames in the room he’d just come from so they wouldn’t reignite again.

    That being said, he wouldn’t have a whole lot of time to relax. Only a few steps in to the next room would find him falling into a large pool of water if he didn’t manage to catch his footing in time. The current room was about sixty feet from wall to wall with nothing but water to see. Not that he’d be able to see much. The space was so dimly lit it may as well have been pitch black, with the only source of light being a small lantern hung next to a door on the far side. If he made his way over to the door, he’d find a small five foot platform that he could stand on before it. The door was locked like the last one was, though this one at least had a handle on it and an obvious keyhole. There were large steel bars running the length of the door to fortify it, enough so that he could reasonably deduce that force would not be adequate enough to get past into the next area. He would need to find the key, and the only clue seemed to be coming from the water itself.

    The pool was as dark as the rest of the room, and it was impossible to tell how deep it was, though Mercury knew for a fact that it was quite deep. The waters churned and shifted slightly, as though there was possibly something -- or several somethings -- swimming within its depths, out of sight. But something that was within sight, if he took a moment to look closely enough, was a single, small source of light glowing down in the waters far below the surface...

    WORDS: 1003/2009 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 13th December 2020, 8:21 am

    WC
    1084 words 3021/3000
    TAGGED
    @tagged
    This is where any notes or fancy quotes/song lyrics can go! If you don't need it, simply delete the text within this space. It will scroll if needed.

    With the force of his initial punch carrying him forward, Tsu found the edge of the water much quicker than he probably would have liked, his absurd dexterity being the only thing keeping him from immediately falling in. His right foot hit the ledge and instinctually he reversed his momentum. He kicked his left leg out, tossing off his own balance and allowing himself to throw his upper body back, then hop-wiggle-hop backwards until he was relatively safe. By that time, of course, the door behind him had shut and the room was nearly black as pitch.

    With a simple snap of his fingers, however, he brought at least another pocket of light to him, allowing him to look around and get a sense of the room. No obvious traps, which made sense because if they were obvious they wouldn't be very good traps. He found the door on the other side and felt that it would probably withstand more than a few of his force punches. Even summoning one of his weapons would probably be useless here. Heck, he briefly considered pulling out the Thousand Pulse Cannon but the blast would probably do much more damage than he wanted to in general. He didn't know where Ahab was, so blowing this place up was off the list. Sliding slowly around the room he examined the smooth walls for anything that betrayed their fine, clearly elaborate design. He was either looking for an alternate exit or a hint towards who had designed this place. The big gouts of fire had given him one idea and this giant evil swimming pool was reinforcing it strongly.

    When he noticed the light at the depths of the water, it spelled out exactly what he had to do to get out. Unfortunately he didn't look within for more than a moment, devising the obvious plan rather than waiting to get a closer look, he dismissed the churns within the water as some natural waves. With a deep breath, he jumped in.

    ——————

    Ahab spoke up as Tsubasa examined the room. He'd been quietly watching how he solved the fire debacle and once Tsu was full on into search mode, Ahab, mouth full of noodles, explained, "It was cooking fire to him. That's a song his mom taught him for how to put out cooking fires. What a little dork." There was a very familiar tone to his voice, however, similar to how one would talk about their own sibling.

    "But hey I get what you mean. It was a good idea to keep me away from him for this, you know. I'm like… 93% of the brains at least. And also at least 70% of the brawn. He's mostly there for show, really." As he watched Tsu jump in, he said, "You know if we're bein' real here, I'm kinda interested in what's gonna happen if he actually… loses his cool. I've only seen it happen like twice and the most recent time, he vaporized a guy who tried to kill his sister." Seemingly interrupting himself like a distracted child, he said, "Oh hey twisty." And turned a knob. The water started to thrash harder.

    "Oh very twisty."

    —————

    Tsu had never been the best swimmer. He could move through the water and dive and things, sure, but he wasn't going to win any Olympic medals any time soon. As he started to sink into the pool, he headed straight for the single light in the darkness.

    And that's when the water started to toss and turn around him. From his perspective it happened slowly at first, just enough to stop his descent before he felt things start to smack into him. Little nudges at first, as though something were testing him. Then they started hitting with force. Faster than he could move and definitely faster than he could dodge. He couldn't see anything around him with one particularly hard hit to his back, the breath was quite literally knocked from him.

    With urgency, he started to head back to the surface, only to find that these things were grabbing on to him and trying to hold him down. Flailing and floundering under the water, he turned his head downward and opened his mouth. Rather than trying to breath or some other stupid thing, he fired out a burst of sound. The sonic waves were enough to get him to the surface, even if just barely. He looked up quickly, a veritable tsunami surrounding him as he took a breath. "You should probably know," He shouted as he struggled to bring his hands together, "Water was the first thing I learned. And the second…" He brought his hands together for just an instant, which was enough. The water parted around him, trapping him and whatever had been grabbing onto him in an air pocket surrounded by the now still waves. As he began to drop towards the ground, Tsubasa let out a battle cry and with it a charge of electricity which fried everything in the water except himself.

    Except, now he was falling with increasing speed, quite deep into the murder pool. With a look of very careful precision on his face, he pulled small chunks of water out of the trapped space and used them as either stepping points or to just slow his fall to the bottom. He still hit with decent force, but his farrago plan had succeeded well enough. He did his best to reintroduce the water into the vacant space quite slowly, forcing it to carry him back to the surface. Roughly three-fourths through, however, he lost control and the water started to surround him with more force than he could take. His hoodie seemed to activate on its own and popped him back to the surface in a flash. He stumbled backwards on the small platform he had been given, looking around confused as though he had no idea how he had gotten back up to the surface. The key still in his hand, he placed it in the keyhole but didn't turn it yet. Instead, he reached in his pocket and seemed to dig around for a moment.

    Finally, he pulled out an energy drink, his signature brand, and chugged it all in one go. Crushing it down, he tossed it into the murder pool, unlocked the door, and turned to leave.

    Then went back and grabbed it out, because littering is bad even in an evil torture palace.

    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 7th January 2021, 2:20 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    “Aw, that’s cute,” Mercury commented in response to Ahab’s explanation that the little song Tsubasa had been using to help with the fire room had been one the young man’s mother had taught him to know how to put cooking fires out. She was quite certain that her protege would resent being called something so unmanly as cute, but he wasn’t exactly there to protest it. She continued to chuckle and watch as the green squirrel explained that separating the two was for the best as Ahab was the bulk of their joint operation, and thus Tsubasa would clearly struggle all the harder without his support. “Well, he does seem to love a good show.”

    After that, Ahab admitted that he was kind of hoping he’d get to see Tsubasa lose his cool here. It was a phenomenon that was so rare he could count the times it had happened on less than one hand, and apparently the last time Tsubasa had… Mercury blinked and looked at the rodent. “Wait, he what now?” she asked, almost unable to believe her ears. Tsubasa had vaporized someone? Granted it was to save his sister, so it sounded like there was some kind of situation happening there, but still. This was Tsubasa. He could hardly be convinced to squash a bug most days, and had always taken a great deal of effort to ensure that the people he fought always survived. Or at least, weren’t killed by him. He just wasn’t the type to murder someone, even in self defense. Yet apparently he had done so after losing his temper, and he hadn’t even told Mercury about it yet.

    Of course, then Ahab found the knob that turned the pool into a vortex, and soon Tsubasa was dealing with all sorts of problems under the waters. For a moment it looked like he might drown as he got knocked around beneath the waves and pulled away from the surface, but he utilized some kind of sonic ability to shoot him up toward the fresh air. Mercury was met with a defiant shout as he informed her that water was the first type of magic he had learned, before demonstrating his mastery over the second, wrapping a safe bubble of air around himself and descending safely down to the key below the water, charging the liquid with a violent flash of lightning that killed everything in the pool that had been considering him a snack. “Very nice,” Mercury complimented as Tsu snatched the key and mae his way back up to the door. Before he opened it, he chugged an energy drink and crushed it, tossing it carelessly behind him and strolling out, causing Mercury to chuckle with appreciation. She loved when he got sassy.

    Of course, that was all ruined about two seconds later when he hurried back in to collect the trash, having suddenly thought better of his littering. “Oh my stars, he is such a dork,” she lamented playfully, calling back to Ahab’s own word that he’d used to describe his partner earlier.

    As Tsubasa moved into the next area, Mercury enacted the mechanisms that would shut the door behind him, keeping him from being able to go back the way he’d come and sticking with the theme of trapping him in one room at a time, forcing him to move forward. This was another large room with a vast expanse of space between his current platform and the platform sporting the exit door. However, there was no water in this room. Instead, there was a hole in the ground so deep that it was impossible to see the bottom. The ceiling was as high as the ground was low, the vaulted expanse difficult to see the top of. Littered between the large expanse of space was a number of platforms that seemed to hover in place, each one facing a different direction -- even if that direction would make it impossible to walk upon it, such as being turned sideways. These platforms were scattered throughout the room with plenty of space between them, meaning that Tsubasa was going to have to find a way to traverse between each floating ramp in order to reach the door at the other end.

    Oh, and it would only take a few seconds after reaching the first platform for the artificial gravity mechanisms to kick in, which would frequently change the direction that gravity pulled his body, thus turning gravity quite literally upside down, side ways, and every which direction that would force him to slide off platforms that had been perfectly level only moments before.

    WORDS: 772/772 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 15th January 2021, 2:31 am

    WC
    1549 words
    TAGGED
    @Mercury Arseneault
    I can feel the heat but it's soothing...


    "Oh yeah, big whole thing," Ahab continued, perhaps not reading the air as well as he should have been. "So he's been going around doing things, you know. Adventures. It turns out like… every little thing he's been doing has been messing with some dark guild he had no knowledge of. Weather Control, they call themselves." As Tsu moved between rooms, he adjusted a few knobs, most of which just adjusted the lighting and air, because atmosphere was equally important in things like this.

    Fluffing up his tail to lean back on, creating his own recliner, he continued, "So he got caught up in all this stuff and then the leader, some guy with like an S name, sends Tsu a picture of our family temple as like an I'm-gonna-kill-yer-family invitation type thing. We never flew so fast. That's when he broke the first boomerang thingy you and him made. He kaboomed it straight into some demon's chest. And then he sword fought with this guy and the guy was like," He did a deep voice, "You ruined all my plans and you suck," His voice went normal, "And he said uh… he said Tsu stole me? He said they made me." He grew silent for a second as there was a wave of seriousness that he fervently tried to push past, "Anyway they were sword fighting and this guy was better at swords than Tsu and so he was cutting him like… a lot. And then Dehlia threw her heel at him. The S guy, hit him right in the thinker."

    He mimicked throwing a shoe, "You met Dehlia? You'd love her, she's like your exact flavor of bitch. But anyway then he, the S guy, turned like he was gonna attack Dehl and—" Ahab finished, not with words but with hand gestures like fireworks exploding, "Night sky lit up like it was day. Guy was gone. Tsu was sittin' there with the Thousand Pulse Cannon over his shoulder and everyone was still as a meditation pond." He pointed at one of the several screens on which Tsu was featured, "Oh look, he's doin' stuff."

    Tsu was, indeed, doin' stuff. He had walked towards the edge of the hole and loudly asked, "Did you just not have an interior decorator for this one? Should I come back later? What's the theme here? Is it art? Because I'm not good at that. Fire, water, esoteric?"

    He walked back to the entrance and said, "I mean I guess you expect me to just—" And he took a running start, picking up some of his trademark speed and leaping to the first platform. He held his hands up like an Olympic athlete's flourish, showing off to whomever was watching. Of course, pride goeth, as he dropped his hands so too did gravity, sending him tumbling like a wayward apple across the first platform. "Ah pumpkins!" He shouted, as he started running again. From a complete stop he couldn't do much more than keep his current position for a few seconds, but it seemed to be enough for him to think of something else.

    "Oh the P word," Ahab interjected, "You must'a really caught him off gourd there."

    Tsu activated his battle suit without any incantation, a flash of transformation as his hoodie engulfed his full form and wrapped him in the awesome guise of a space pirate. Sending out a burst of sound from the suit, it was enough to throw him to the next platform just as gravity shifted again, causing what was once the side to become the bottom and flattening him against the platform he'd been flying towards.

    "Okay!" He said, "Not art, just science! Too bad for you my teacher is super good at science!"

    He righted himself and started running towards the next platform, keeping sight of the goal in front of him. Which was now sideways but still before him. All he needed, he figured was to make sure that he knew where it was. Everything else was just in the way.

    Feeling the gravity begin to change again, he crouched down to get a sense of which way it would go. He was now sliding forward and at an angle, which would throw him straight down into what was originally the upward hole. He had a plan for that one. He eyed the next platform, approximately fifteen meters away and far enough that he couldn't jump it himself. He could, however, give himself a little boost.

    Turning his hands outward as he leaped into the air, he fired two continuous jets of flame behind him, powering flight for just a few moments against the combative gravity. It was enough to get him to the next position where he moved slowly but surely while waiting for gravity to change again. It did, of course, and much harder this time, slamming him against the ground and seeming to increase forcefully.

    Ahab whistled innocently.

    Undeterred, Tsubasa continued crawling forward, eventually gripping the edge of this platform as gravity shifted again, this time turning so that his grip was now all that was keeping him from falling into the abyss that was… he was pretty sure it was once the one on the bottom. The door was right side up now, which told him he was correct. Now was the best time to make a break as fast as he could. Shoving the platform away from him, he lit his palms again, flying towards the next platform and kicking off of it to get to the next one.

    He'd nearly made it there before gravity shifted once more. Unfortunately his flames had extinguished with the expectation of landing, and he was sent falling. This happened a few more times, as many times as he seemed to catch himself, the gravity shifted and threw him into another platform. He was completely off whatever rhythm he'd had at the start, and he was definitely taking punishment for it. After one particularly hard hit, near the middle of the room, he couldn't catch himself in time and went sailing towards the abyss.

    The top abyss this time. He looked back down and for a moment he seemed to just... fall. His abilities had gotten him this far but he was getting tired. What if it kept on like this? How much further could he go? Ahab's stupid little face popped into his head. Weather Control had said they'd created him, hadn't they? What if they were experimenting on him now? What would become of him if Tsu gave up? So many people counted on him, what would they think of him if they'd known he doubted himself for even a moment?

    He mumbled to himself, closing his eyes underneath the masked helmet, "Ah heck this... Come on do it on purpose this time do it on purpose this time — NOW!" He shouted the final word and the hoodie, now presented as the suit around him, teleported him upwards to the platform he had barely missed, causing him to land in a roll.

    He was in the home stretch now, but with a quick look at his hands, the jets of flame were a poor idea. He'd yet to master their energy output, therefore as long as he held them, he took considerable damage to his own hands. The suit-provided gloves had long since burned away and the flesh beneath indeed looked severely charred, but he persevered undeterred. Someone had stolen his rat.

    He made a break for the door, there were only two platforms left between him and the one on which the door stood. He was currently horizontal in relation to it, but feeling the shift in gravity once again, he threw himself to the next platform just in time to keep running alongside it, the first time he had done so. It seemed as though something had shifted in him when he had successfully performed the teleportation with his hoodie. His speed increased exponentially, as it had a tendency to do when he was in a combat situation, and as he leapt towards the final platform and gravity shifted again, he summoned the Bottle Rocket, the smaller of his projectile weapons and fired three consecutive shots away from the platform, hurtling him hard onto it. He threw the gun away and it dissipated back into the ether.

    Standing up, he took a deep breath and placed his hands together seemingly in prayer. A cascade of water covered his hands and soothed the immediate damage. However, they still looked incredibly raw. "I feel like I've been super patient up until now but I'm only gonna ask this like, one or two more times tops," In one fell swoop he summoned the Thousand Pulse Cannon from the ether and fired the rocket launcher sized railgun it into the door. The blast had been exactly as Ahab had described it just minutes ago. The cameras went stark white at the sheer brightness of the attack lit the room up like the sun, causing at least one or two to fitz out. When the rest returned to normal, they would show the aftermath of the attack, a hole in the metal roughly twice the size of the original hole.

    "Where's my rat?"

    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 18th January 2021, 2:51 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    One of Mercury’s favorite things about Ahab was that he was excessively chatty, often not stopping to really think about whether or not he should be saying things before he proceeded with doing so. It was a favorable quality to the woman, whom no one realized was both not human and also a spy. She loved getting maximum information with minimal questioning, and Ahab was just a constantly turning water mill of gossip and speculative chatter. While she was certainly keeping an eye on the cameras and watching Tsu as he attempted to navigate the platforms, her emerald gaze kept flicking back to the fluffy rodent as he wove the tale of how Tsubasa had stumbled into becoming a killer.

    He reiterated how the young man was a bit of an adventurer, going around and doing random things for the fun of the experience, which of course Mercury was already well aware of. She was an avid watcher of his LacTube channel by this point, and spent a lot of their interactions actively supporting that passion by helping to film his content when she was around. Even now, half the reason all these cameras were in place was so that he could get all the footage to post later if he wanted to. But apparently, by what sounded to be pure coincidence, all of his exploits up until that point had been unintentionally screwing with a dark guild called Weather Control. According to Ahab, Tsubasa had accidentally interfered with them so many times that the group was actively hunting him and even trying to use his family as bait. In fact, even Ahab himself had been a creation of the dark guild’s designs, the only point in the story that the squirrel told with a sense of sobriety that betrayed he was still trying to work out his feelings over the matter.

    The most recent encounter, or at least the most astounding one, happened when Weather Control’s leader threatened to kill Dehlia, Tsu’s sister, and the Silver Wolf mage had immediately whipped out his Thousand Pulse Cannon and obliterated the man before he could get the chance. Ahab finished the tale as quickly as he had started it, jumping right back into watching Tsubasa with interest as he started to deal with the sudden changes in gravity. Mercury, on the other hand, was still idly turning over the information that she’d just received, dissecting it at light speed and pondering over the matter. She wanted to be surprised that her enthusiastic protege hadn’t brought any of this up with her before, but at the same time it made sense. Tsubasa wasn’t afraid to ask for help when it came to learning and educating himself, but he did seem the type that wouldn’t want to involve other people in his personal problems, especially those of a life threatening nature. Even more than that, he wasn’t trained to kill like Mercury was. He had been raised in a nurturing, nominally healthy environment in comparison to the harsh, hostile one that Mercury had endured. Having to take a life probably wasn’t something he was readily capable of coping with, and he was likely trying to keep it to himself.

    It was a bit, well… saddening. Mercury wasn’t the most compassionate of individuals. In fact, she rarely cared at all about the struggles other people endured, rarely going out of her way to assist or support anyone at all without some kind of ulterior motive or hidden agenda in place. However, her time around Vandrad and his family was teaching her how to care, slowly breaking down her walls in ways that should have -- and did -- alarm her. And while she was still unsympathetic to the general populous, individuals that she had come to know well and to respect or even like found themselves in the rare position of Mercury actually contemplating if and how she should get involved in trying to help them out. Tsubasa was one such individual, and the thought of him struggling to come to grips with something so profounding traumatic pulled on her limited emotional heartstrings in a way that left her a little more quiet than usual as she watched him navigate her gravity course.

    His battle suit snapped into existence around him, aiding his efforts in keeping solid footing for as long as possible as he exclaimed out loud about how this room was definitely keeping up with a science theme. Tagged in with that was how his unseen enemy had made a grievous error as his teacher was a science master and had greatly helped to hone his own scientific abilities. If only he knew that it was that self same teacher putting him through the ropes now. Truthfully, Mercury had run the data and had at first assumed about a thirty-five percent chance that Tsubasa would realize it was her after going through enough rooms, but now that she’d gleaned some new information she couldn’t help but wonder if the young man thought Weather Control was behind all this. It was entertaining, but with that came the understanding that perhaps he might wind up being even more emotionally charged over these surprise tests than even she had calculated he’d be.

    The young man was tossed around for a few minutes by the gravity chamber, which Ahab took great delight in helping to make all the more difficult, until Tsubasa finally managed to get to the other side. His hands were charred from the magic he’d been using, which he quickly healed with one of his water spells, though from the look of things on the camera that hadn’t quite restored the flesh to full health. He spoke once more, stating how patient he’d been up until that point, and how he was going to ask only a couple more times where Ahab was. In the midst of that, he’d summoned his Thousand Pulse Cannon and demonstrated the exact display of destructive power that Ahab had attempted to describe, vaporizing not just the door but a large chunk of the walls around it.

    “Alright, so bear with me here,” Mercury told Ahab as the next room revealed itself to Tsubasa, and thus to them. “I may have taken a liberty or two that Tsu might not like, but it’s gonna be like… super effective. For a while. Until he figures out it’s a trick, in which case we might finally see him get super angry cause… you know what, you’ll see.” There was no point in explaining what Ahab was about to witness with his own eyes, anyway. The room beyond was just as massive as the last room, except the floor and ceiling were both visible here. Additionally, while he could see everything in the room he could not easily get to everything, as the room was filled with thick, see through walls that appeared to be an insanely more durable plexiglass type of material that he would quickly realize could not be blasted through, even with his cannon. The walls were set up in such a way as to have created a maze, sectioning off smaller portions of the room that each held their own miniature obstacle that he would have to deal with almost one after another in quick succession as there was very little space to pause and rest between each. There were laser beams, swinging scythes, pitfalls, dart traps… just about every type of gimmick one could find in a Louisiana Jones movie was jammed into this room for a high paced, quick thinking, very-real-and-definitely-not-cinematic-magic, deadly obstacle course.

    And at the center of the course, a small metal cage hung from a heavy chain in the ceiling. Inside was Ahab. Or at least, what would appear to be Ahab. Due to an odd mixture of Mercury’s organic-synthetic genes and her magic that allowed her to manipulate and create things with what was essentially the components of her own body, she was actually quite adept at building blueprints for synthetic beings that would look and feel fleshy and real, just like she did. And on top of that, she could program these clones with a limited selection of personality and vocal features that made it difficult to peg the clones as fake. The green squirrel currently freaking out in the cage would look and feel and sound exactly like Ahab, even capable of mimicking his mannerisms and phrases, and having knowledge of some of Ahab’s memories. Specifically, the ones Mercury was aware enough of to instill in the clone. It would probably take a bit for Tsubasa to realize that it wasn’t actually Ahab. In fact, it was entirely possible that Tsubasa would manage to get to this clone, get it out of the cage, and complete the rest of the obstacles to get out the other side and into the next room before he figured it out.

    Presuming, of course, that he managed to save the Ahab double from the very real, extremely heavy duty, industrial grade shredder that his cage was slowly being lowered toward.

    WORDS: 1517/2289 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 22nd January 2021, 2:25 am

    WC
    2186/3735 words
    TAGGED
    @Mercury Arseneault

    Alright it's time to blow this scene
    Get everybody and their stuff together
    Okay?
    Three
    Two
    One
    Let's jam

    When Ahab saw what Merc had created, he sat back and laughed like someone finally getting a naughty joke, "Ohhhh man this ain't gonna be good. You got like an emergency button to pull him out if he's gonna kill himself right??"

    Tsubasa stopped and took in the room. The gun wouldn't help here, whoever was doing this was stronger than him and knew what he was capable of. With a tug of the small cord at the nape of his suit it reverted to its jacket form. His hair had been mussed up ever so slightly by the suit and presented now in such a way that it seemed to cast a shadow over his eyes.

    He took a step forward. He could see himself running in and tearing through this place, using up every bit of his magic to ensure that Ahab was torn from the cage as quickly as possible, but something didn't sit right about that… Voices, memories of his elders tugged at him from all sides. They all echoed the same thing.

    Haste is not speed.

    There are last second victories which are still victories.

    Moving quickly is not moving fast.


    But they had all said the same thing:

    Slow down, Tsubasa.



    He took a moment. He wanted to run. He wanted to dash through literally everything, no matter how quickly it would kill him, to get Ahab. Instead, he grit his teeth, sat down and focused. It came back to him.

    Before he had left his house for the first time on his initial adventures, his family had showered him with small presents. Food for the road, charms and items that would bring him luck and prosperity, and things that could be sold for a small sum if he needed the jewels (he'd never sold anything, of course). And finally, the gift from his father had been a family heirloom. A small necklace which seemed to be a glowing stone surrounded in what could have easily been misidentified as octopus tentacles.
    "When you finally slow down, you'll see how much energy you've been wasting." He said, as he put the necklace around his son's neck.


    And even now, under his hoodie, beneath the sight of anyone, was the same necklace that had been given to him by his father before he'd left. It seemingly did nothing other than look strange, so he had never really thought about it. But now, as he let himself breathe and concentrated, he could feel it growing warm and had his eyes been open, see that it was emanating light as well. Thankfully, all of this happened in merely a few seconds, though in his now calm state he could hear the chain rattling as it drew closer, clank by clank, towards its gnashing nadir.

    The necklace around his neck filled him with the latent energy that he had been wasting in his efforts. Had it all been channeled into here? This was nothing like the energy that he'd kept charged up with the energy drinks. This felt pure, like the difference between sunlight on your skin and that strange orangeish lamplight seen in the poorer hotels. Of course the body doesn't know what it's missing until it feels it. His heart rate slowed and his breathing grew under control. These meditation techniques were things he had been taught by both Dayu of the Stone and the ancient Wizard Melandrach, but had up until now only been used for the quickest of instants rather than something to be focused on.

    His eyes snapped open as the calmness washed over him. His mood had not changed, he was still extremely angry at this entire situation, though rather than a churning ocean eager to rage into a storm, he had changed to a still lake within which lay an endless abyss, that which would peacefully drag the unsuspecting down to their watery grave without so much as a gurgle.

    He stood up and pulled the hood onto him. He seemed to have formed a plan. Taking a step back towards the entrance, he took off into a run. He would have no place to stop for a breather throughout this, but that would work towards his advantage as there was no place for him to lose momentum.

    He started out in a run. There were traps he could see, and he was certain there were more that he wouldn't be able to. That's why they were called traps. But in this blank slate state, he took everything as it came without the surprised gasp or stalling that one would expect from someone his age or general maturity level. Instead, he moved like the young monk he had been trained to be. The lessons behind the training that hadn't fully clicked until now. Not that it had become time for him to understand, but that he had finally been willing to.

    First came an uneven dart trap. It would be difficult to dodge each and every one of them, judging by the various holes coming from both sides of the walls. As such, he tossed his hands forward and two stone slabs formed, blocking them in their tracks. The darts were powerful, to be sure, cracking into the stone, but not breaking it. Had that been by chance or by choice? Had Tsubasa been able to foresee the power of the darts and create just enough of a barrier for them?

    He'd passed through it already, rounded the corner and was on to the next thing. Ahab (as he understood him to be) was calling out to him. Shouting something. Tsubasa had to ignore it. He had to cut him out to get to him faster. Any reassurances were time and effort that would better be spent actually getting to him.

    A pitfall opened up just beneath him. Without slowing, he stepped onto the side of the wall and continued running along side it, the momentum he'd gathered up until this moment enough to carry him onward. A short stretch of running forward followed another turn. He could hear the clanking of the chain as it dropped just a little bit further down. As he whipped around the corner he saw a series of lasers before him, just a short moment away. Reaching into his pocket he pulled out the empty can from before, throwing it at the lasers. Sure enough they turned it into recycled aluminum in a flash. What's more, they rose and fell just out of sync with each other like the world's worst spa jets, roughly two meters forward, a bit too long for him to safely outright jump.

    Tsubasa reached to the side of his neck and pulled on the two strings of his hoodie, tightening it and getting rid of any slack of the back of the hood. Additionally, rather than move straight forward he lurched towards the wall and kicked off of it, going straight downwards onto the steel floor instead of forward. He dropped hard, but lost little momentum and continued rolling forward, narrowly missing each laser past its raising point. It seemed that the reason he had thrown himself off in that second was to recalibrate his timing and continue onward without missing a beat.

    He cleared the lasers, but continued rolling along for a moment before kicking outward and throwing his legs around like an experienced breakdancer, pulling himself to his feet and continuing onward. Seemingly hitting a certain point, the swinging blades started their mechanical oscillation, and his eyes moved with them as he timed their movement. Too wild to run through, too close to pause between, no gears to gunk up—

    No gears to gunk up.

    He threw his left hand out and extended a whip of raw electricity, which he then threw at the first swinging blade. In a move straight out of Arachnae-Boy, he threw himself into the air, right with the perpendicular swinging of the blades, letting the first blade take him up even higher at which point he released the whip and threw another one. In a move that would have absolutely killed him if he hadn't done it just right, he latched onto the third blade and swung right past the second, the sharpened edge coming within centimeters of his face. He hit the ground in a roll and continued onward. On any other day he would have stopped to remark about how cool that was.

    He reached the same chamber as Ahab and could see that the bottom of the metal cage was extremely close to getting caught, which would no doubt turn Ahab to gristle in a few precious seconds. Tsubasa jerked his hoodie off of his body, unzipping it smoothly like he was throwing it off after a day of exercising.

    Instead of tossing it aside he balled it up and hurled it straight at the cage, covering it like one would do to the cage of a sleeping bird. He had to break the chain then move as quickly as possible to the extraction point.

    As he rounded the shredder, he started snapping, causing sparks to fly from his fingers, little fireworks that seemed to dissipate as quickly as they were made. It would take a second for all but the most trained eyes to see what he was doing.

    The chain was starting to heat up. Snapping rapidly like an offbeat poet society, Tsubasa heated up one particular link, a weak point that connected the cage and the rest of the chain. It would take the least effort to burn through. Not that he would be able to tear through it, considerable effort was put into every snap, but all he needed was it to weaken just enough and the weight of the cage would do the rest.

    Now.

    The chain snapped and the bottom of the cage got caught in the gnasher. At that instant, it disappeared and reappeared in the air roughly four meters in front of Tsubasa. He ran to catch it, having done all of this without stopping. His hoodie had done its job in the teleportation, pulling only the cage and not the entire chain with it, which would have been beyond its movement weight as it likely would have attempted to dislodge the entire ceiling.

    Unfortunately this was only half of the way through, which meant that Tsubasa had to continue onwards, now carrying a metal cage. He gripped one of the bars and his hand lit up again. This… hurt. A lot. But as he bent through the heated metal and Ahab ventured outwards, it was definitely better than lugging around a cage through the rest of the maze. This time he didn't look back as he threw the cage into the shredder before swinging his hoodie back on and continuing through.

    Now he was starting to look winded. Was he tired? Absolutely. But the weight against his heart had been more than lifted now that he had Ahab in his hood. The flying squirrel made some remark. He shot a glance to the side.

    A series of metal spikes revealed themselves and threatened to impale him and his flying squirrel companion. He turned his upper body towards them just in time and threw both hands out in front of him. A blast of force magic jammed the spikes from erupting towards them for just long enough that the two passed by. Ahab made some joke about being too close for comfort but Tsubasa didn't respond. They weren't clear yet.

    He continued on. The flamethrower was drowned by a wave of water, the pit spikes were flown over with the help of a burst of sound. The poisonous blades would have been trouble but for the miniature void that swallowed them up and the final series of darts, ending parallel to the beginning, ended with another wall of stone. This one was bigger than the last, possibly foreseeing a stronger ending than beginning.

    As he slowed to a stop, he pulled Ahab out of his hoodie, took a look at him. Ahab said something to him but it didn't register to Tsubasa. Instead, something else hit him like a ton of bricks. Like the optometrist finally setting your new pair of glasses and letting you realize that individual leaves exist.

    Instead, he cradled the little flying squirrel and looked into the air, "This isn't my rat. Who are you and why are you testing me?" He took a deep breath and said, "You put me in a fire place to test my fire magic. You put me in a water place to test my water magic. You put me in antigravity to test my black holes. You seem to know exactly what I can do but you don't want me dead because you could have killed me at least fifteen times here. Heck, you could have just left me in the fire box. What do you want from me? You want me to join your gang? How about you show yourself and we can settle this like grown ups?"

    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 27th February 2021, 1:57 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    “If the danger isn’t real, it won’t truly push him.”

    It was the only cryptic response she gave to Ahab’s question, neither confirming nor outright denying that she didn’t have any failsafes in place to protect Tsubasa should things take a turn for the worse. Still, it was obvious by her forward posture and her locked gaze that she didn’t plan on taking her eyes off the screen for even a second as the younger man worked his way through the series of obstacles. She wondered how he would fare in a situation like this, with Ahab in full sight, descending closer and closer toward a grisly death. Or at least, what appeared to be Ahab. Mercury had interacted with enough Earthlanders to know that they were at their stupidest and most desperate when it came to watching their loved ones suffer, particularly when the end result was an apparent demise. Would Tsubasa be the same?

    There was certainly a brief moment of consideration as his eyes honed in on the damn near perfect clone of the green squirrel. She didn’t need to see him panic outright to know the sense of urgency that was surely flowing through his veins. And yet, rather than beginning to race through the course, he took a deep breath and sat down. Mercury sat forward a little more fully, resting on her elbows with her fingers interlocked in front of her face as she observed him. It was hard to tell over the monitors, but after a moment it seemed like there was a faint glow coming from his chest. From what, she wasn’t sure. When he finally opened his eyes, there was a look of focus and determination on his face that she recognized well, though up until this point it was a look she had seen on others rather than on Tsu himself, who had always been a rather carefree, nigh unflappable and constantly upbeat individual. Now? He was serious.

    He back up toward the door to give himself a bit of space before taking off at a steadily paced run toward the path that laid before him, handling the obstacles with a practiced grace that she hadn’t realized he was capable of, as though at some point he had learned to move without having to think about the placement of his body. Or perhaps, this was his first time tapping into that kind of mental state. It wasn’t an ability one simply learned how to do. He slipped right through the dart trap, summoning two slabs of stone just large and sturdy enough to protect him on either side. The pitfall barely even broke his stride, with Tsubasa instinctively shifting his feet to the more solid wall and relying on the momentum he’d already built up to keep him moving toward the other side.

    The lasers would be a tougher challenge. He had just enough timing to test their lethality by throwing the emptied can at them and watching them disintegrate it before it was his turn to pass through. He tightened the hoodie around his head and continued to press forward. Mercury was so invested that she hadn’t even noticed her hand was hovering over one of the buttons as though she were getting ready to react should he not get his timing right. And as far she she could honestly tell, he wasn’t going to. Seen onto to her own eyes through the optic lenses that were a biological feature of her race, she had already mapped out a visual trajectory of the results he would see at his current pace: he would manage to slip by the first two beams, but the third would get him. He leaped up onto the wall, and her finger flinched over the button as she prepared to press it…

    Only for Tsubasa to use the wall as a platform to adjust his timing at the last second, by just a fraction of time long enough to allow him to roll right beneath each laser just as it was passing out of range until he was back up on the other side unscathed. A deep smirk of pride dug small trenches into Mercury’s cheeks as she slowly withdrew her hand from over the button and relaxed, loosening a bit of tension in her shoulders that she hadn’t been aware of until that moment. But the danger wasn’t over yet, not by a long shot. He still had to make it past the pendulum scythes, and that was not going to be an easy task. She could only watch as he tapped into his control over electricity, shaping some kind of lasso like cord for himself and using it to latch onto the pole of the blade, pulling himself up for height. As the first blade reached its apex and began to fall, he released the electricity and sent out another bolt that bypassed the second blade and went straight for the third, from which he swung down like he was hanging from a rope to just barely slip past both the second and the third blades, once again rolling his way out with mere inches to spare.

    And he was just in time, too. The cage with the faux Ahab was on the precipice of getting minced by the industrial sized gears below it. Tsubasa would have very little time to think. Luckily, it seemed he wouldn’t need it. Off came his jacket, which he swiftly threw over the top of the cage to cover the squirrel. Mercury watched with a curious frown, waiting patiently to see what the purpose of that act was. He started snapping his fingers, causing the digits to emit sparks that she couldn’t quite understand at first. Then, she saw it: The growing red hot sign of heat being applied to a singular link in the chain that held the cage aloft. He was striking it repeatedly in the same spot, causing the link to weaken and weaken as the heat softened the metal enough to make it malleable until the weight of the cage alone was enough to break it. The cage plummeted the last few inches to the grinder, getting caught only for a moment before it disappeared entirely and materialized in the air in front of Tsubasa.

    “You clever little bastard,” she murmured, her smirk from before spreading into a little grin. The man caught the cage, not once having lost his momentum since he’d started moving, but now he had another problem: There was no way he could feasibly carry the cumbersome contraption around without it being a liability. So, he elected to get rid of it in the quickest, most efficient way possible, though it would come at a cost. Gripping a bar, he once more began to heat the metal up, this time directly with his hand. It was impossible to tell from here if this was hurting him or not, though she assumed it was by the subtle winces and twitches on his face as he worked to pry open a hole big enough for the clone to slip through. Once that was done, the cage was tossed back onto the grinder and Tsu had slipped his jacket back on, ready to get them out through the second half of the course.

    First were the spikes, which he easily evaded by utilizing sonic force to keep them at bay long enough for them to get past. In fact, he made his way through the rest of the hurdles nearly as smoothly. In almost no time at all he was at the end of the run, clear from the immediate dangers and ready to inspect Ahab to make sure he was uninjured. Or at least, that’s what she assumed at first. That didn’t seem to actually be the case, however, as he tucked the clone into his arms and looked up, announcing that he knew it wasn’t the real Ahab. Well, he had figured that out faster than she thought he would. Certainly faster than others had in the past, as her clones were extremely realistic and expertly programmed to mimic the real deal. Still, there was only so much that programming could do to replicate a living being, and clearly she had made a miscalculation somewhere that had given it away. He ran down the list of challenges that he’d faced, and how each of them had challenged his very specific skill set of magic. He called his unknown assailant out on not taking steps to actually kill him, questioning why he was being tested and asking if this was some kind of gang initiation. Clearly, he still thought this had all been put together by Weather Control.

    His final request was for her to show herself, to stop fiddling around with tests and challenges and face him like an adult. Mercury sat for a long moment, watching the monitor with a focused, unreadable expression, her fingernails drumming lightly against the surface of the console as she thought. Her first inclination -- and her original plan -- was to don a suit of armor that would fully cover her from head to toe and engage him directly in one final test. He was tired. She could see it clearly in his face and his posture. This was the moment to press him harder, to keep pushing his limits until he broke so he could build himself back up even stronger, learn to cope with the intense pain and exhaustion and battle without slipping up or losing focus. If he was going to survive…

    She stopped, her eyes losing focus as something managed to break through the mental tirade. Then, with a gentle sigh, she stood to her feet. “Alright, chief. Let’s get you back to your partner, eh?” the lavender haired woman said, inviting him to climb onto her shoulder so she could reunite the pair.

    A moment later, a door would open in the wall near where Tsubasa stood, and from it Mercury stepped into view. “I can’t really initiate you into a gang that you’re already a part of,” she told him simply, leaning against the door frame with the same light smirk on her face. Ahab was, of course, free to return to Tsubasa as he saw fit, revealing that Ahab had never really been in danger. “On the off chance that you might draw the conclusion, Ahab had nothing to do with this. I just figured you would have a better time forgiving me if it was just you I put in danger, rather than both of you.” That hadn’t been the only reason, of course, but Mercury wasn’t about to open up with some big long monologue. If he had questions, she would answer them. In the meantime, she knew she didn’t really need to say or do anything to acknowledge that this had all been a big long stress test of his abilities. That much was obvious in merely revealing herself.

    “You did good, champ. Your magic has really come a long way, and you handled yourself well. I’m impressed.” It was all she would say for now. He had been overwhelmed enough since he got here, and he deserved the chance to react how he saw fit, to get anything off his chest that he felt the need to. She had been doing enough of the controlling for him the better part of the last hour. This time, it was his turn to decide how things would play out.

    WORDS: 1925/4214 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 2nd March 2021, 4:09 pm

    WC
    1059/4749 words
    TAGGED
    @Mercury Arseneault
    No haven safer
    than the one they tore down


    There was no immediate answer. Tsubasa stood, ready and waiting for the next challenge to appear. Sweat was pouring from his brow and although he stood tall and seemingly prepared, his mana reserves were at their limit, even with everything else he had pulled out. It wasn't pure luck that had driven him to discover that this Ahab was a fake one. It was an exact replica down to nearly the exact scent. It was simply that he didn't belong there. Not that Tsubasa and Ahab had some impressive way of distinguishing each other, but having him there simply didn't make sense as far as everything he had seen.

    As he'd stated before, if they wanted him dead he would be dead. If they'd wanted him dangerous, they made him dangerous. But by giving him Ahab they had made him calm. Taken away a considerable amount of the pressure that had been put on him and made him less dangerous, contrasting the feelings that had been welling up within him up to this point. This was emotional manipulation and very well done. Done so well, in fact, that it was only due to his training that he was able to notice that he was feeling emotions capable of being manipulated.

    Still, despite knowing that this Ahab wasn't a real one, he tucked it into his hoodie like a stray cat being shielded from the rain, determined to protect whatever it was until the end. It wasn't his flying rat, but it sure was a flying rat. If what Samael had said before about creating Ahab was true, there was no reason why Weather Control wouldn't have been able to create another just to make him work towards it. It seemed to have pretty much the exact personality, which caused a part of the back of his mind to feel like it had become an endless void, that which he dare not enter. The idea that his best friend's entire personality was manufactured and could thus be replicated was sickening to say the least.

    In the barest moments of respite he had been given, water swam over his hands in what could have easily been mistaken for customized aquatic boxing gloves. The healing magic did what it could about the burns all over his hands because, honestly, once this spell expired he would have to rely on his raw strength and innate speed until he could regain his mana back enough to cast properly.

    The door would open and something else would pop up or a giant minotaur would attempt to kill him or a giant pop up minotaur would make him play a board game. Exhaustion was setting in properly, as he simultaneously recognized the absurdity of the board game idea and hoped for it. He took a step back from the door in preparation. He worked best when he started from a short distance, after all. Instead, when the door opened, the voice that came from it shocked every absolute inch of him both physically and spiritually.

    Mis— Mercury.

    Everything clicked in the moment before she spoke, but it was as though each independent thought becoming a revelation was also a debilitating punch straight to the gut. He had surmised correctly that this had been a test, but to what end had been completely different. Put simply, it had never crossed his mind that his friend and teacher would have been the one to put him through this. To say that it wasn't dangerous or that it wasn't life threatening was a complete lie. His hands were proof of that, as were the minor injuries that he had sustained elsewhere.

    He had known that her way of teaching was often done by throwing him into the sea and telling him to swim by simply shouting 'stop drowning', but that had always been an interesting challenge for him. This time she had brought him to a raging whirlpool filled with sharks and lured him there by telling him there was going to be a day at an amusement park. Needless to say the calmness that had consumed him had fallen prey to the 'bigger fish' that was the intense rush of emotion that came with this revelation. It was had to say, hard for him to parse out, which part of it angered him the most. Hurt him the most. They had gone through training sessions before, they had risked their lives together too. But she had never masterminded a situation for him to be hurt.

    Had he been a little older, he may have seen the reason for this through her eyes, but the naïveté had blinded him to any possible positive to this. She explained Ahab, the real Ahab's innocence in this, as the flying squirrel sat innocently on her shoulder, giving a tentative wave when mentioned. She praised him on his deeds and there would later be a small part of him that reveled in those words. She was, after all, the teacher he had chosen and he overall took great pride in pleasing her. But not right now.

    Right now it fell on deaf ears and the look of calmness on his face, no fear or anger, nor happiness or relief, was the only reaction he gave her. Walking slowly towards her, he reached his hand out towards Ahab, who jumped from one shoulder to the other, and looked down at the other Ahab. There were probably questions about that, but he wasn't going to ask them now.

    Once Ahab was on his shoulder, Tsubasa let out a brief exhalation through his nose. This was the only warning he gave before his fist flew through the air and he attempted to full force deck Mercury across the jaw. There was no hesitation nor restraint because she was 'a lady', but nor were their any magical empowerments in his fist. It was just his strength against hers, literally the only reaction he could possibly fathom to give her after all of this.

    There came no apology afterwards, whether it connected or not. The Ahabs performed a simultaneous gasp in surprise but said nothing otherwise. Ahab definitely hadn't been expecting that from Tsubasa. The other Ahab hadn't either.

    "I understand. I have things to work on," He said with dangerous calmness. "Where is the exit please."

    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 9th March 2021, 6:42 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    It took a while for him to say anything. In fact, he was surprisingly unreadable at that moment. Tsubasa nearly always had his heart on his sleeve, or at least masked behind a layer of comedy and casual playfulness. It was that reason alone that she knew that he was well and truly upset, perhaps even pissed off. There was no quippy remark, no voice of concern or question, just complete, resounding silence. He walked over close enough to wordlessly invite the real Ahab to clamber onto his shoulder with the robotic clone that she had created, and the moment he sighed she knew what was coming.

    Mercury made no effort to dodge the blow, only turned slightly so that his fist would strike the side of her face rather than head on. It wasn’t enough to send her flying backward -- after all, she took high powered hits from Vandrad on a near daily basis. But, that didn’t mean it hadn’t hurt. Though truthfully, the pain was more in her chest than on her face, as a crushing pit of emotion formed her stomach. The feeling didn’t show in her expression, but it was there nonetheless. He made no apology and she expected none. Truthfully, she knew that she owed him one but Mercury had a suspicion that it wouldn’t mean anything to him right now.

    As calm as the eye of a hurricane, he voiced his understanding that he had things he needed to work on and asked where he had to go to leave. Mercury nodded gently behind her through the threshold where she leaned. “Follow the stairs up,” was all she said, as even in tone as he was. As he walked past her and left, Mercury remained where she was to give him plenty of time to get out and away from her without having to be around her any longer, leaving the Xocili alone where she stood. Her mind was blank yet racing at the same time, a wave of emotion weighing her down that she didn’t fully understand. All she knew is that it wasn’t a good feeling… but then again, that was all too familiar, wasn’t it? It wasn’t the first time someone had left her after she’d pushed things too far, and it probably wouldn’t be the last.

    It was just the first time it had hurt.

    Feeling a bit numb, she remotely tapped into the control panel and shut it down, along with the rest of the building, wiping all the electronics completely of all the data stored within them. The footage had already been uploaded into her mind where she would always retain a copy of it, though for now she was keeping the files shut and locked away. With the wave of a hand, most of the interior of the structure disappeared, leaving the place a barren, abandoned warehouse once more. After that, she summoned her translocator ray, opening a teleportation field to take her to her home in Bellum where she could forget about the night in peace and solitude.

    Over the course of the next few weeks, Tsubasa was decidedly absent from the entirety of the Silver Wolf complex. It wasn’t that he was just avoiding her and not talking to her around the halls of the guild, he simply was not there. Where he had gone, she wasn’t certain, though if she had to harbor a guess it was most likely back home. Mercury was a bit more numb for those few weeks, going through the motions as usual and carrying on with her life, though her normal charisma and friendly energy was more of a front than it typically was. If anyone saw through it, they failed to comment on it, which was just as well. She was upset, of course, and worried about him, though not necessarily about his physical safety. She had been doing a lot of research on anything she could find regarding this Weather Control group, hoping to find out more and keep tabs on them as closely as possible, particularly in relation to Tsubasa. The research wasn’t as enlightening as she would have liked.

    It was a few weeks later that she received a letter in the mail, one that caught her by surprise and perhaps a bit of trepidation. It was an invitation to the Kageyama family shrine. She held the letter carefully, staring at it with a blank expression and trying to ascertain its intention. Her first inclination was to assume it was some kind of trap or trick, some scheme to lure her into a revenge plan, which frankly she would own up to deserving. It didn’t really seem like Tsubasa’s type of scheme, but then again hitting her wasn’t really his kind of thing either. It also could have been an attempt by his family to reach out to her for one reason or another, either to press charges or inform her that something had happened to him, likely as a result of her actions. Then again, it also could have been just an invitation… but her negativity and paranoia didn’t really put too much likeliness to that idea.

    Mercury held on to the invitation for a solid day or two mulling over the possibilities and trying to decide what to do, but eventually she accepted that the only way to know the intent of the invitation was to just go. And no matter what the outcome, Tsubasa did deserve at least that much from her. Using her teleporter, she opened a portal to the nearest coordinates she knew to get her as close as possible to the shrine, coming out the other side somewhere in Oshibana. From there, she hopped on her hoverdisc and traveled the rest of the way, her brain running calculations and scenarios the entire trip.

    The shrine was about what she had been expecting, lots of greenery and Midian inspired buildings. The entire place had an extremely tranquil feel to it, and she could understand immediately why anyone would have retreated here for some peace of mind. Her sensors picked up a few people milling about the place, though none of them were currently in eyesight as she touched down to the ground, gently stepping off the hoverdisc, folding it back up and tucking it into one of her many pouches. She scanned the area carefully and slowly, turning in place to take in the sights as well as to assess it for potential dangers and threats. Her history and nature simply wouldn’t let her shake the feeling that this trip was going to involve a bit of retribution…

    ...Yet, she still was there. Appearing to be calm, but keeping herself alert, she slowly started making the trek toward what appeared to be the central building, the invitation tucked away in a pocket, as she looked either for Tsubasa or another member of the shrine that may have sent it to her.

    WORDS: 1162/5376 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 27th April 2021, 6:08 am

    WC
    812/5561 words
    TAGGED
    @tagged
    This is where any notes or fancy quotes/song lyrics can go! If you don't need it, simply delete the text within this space. It will scroll if needed.


    Although the shrine was well kept, it seemed to have more than a few visitors on most days, evidenced by a well worn prayer wall, which held several wooden tablets upon which different prayers and wishes had been written by shrine-goers. Things varying from "I hope she says yes." to "C'mon promotion…" and all the way to "Would a bigger allowance kill my parents???" written in all languages.

    However, on this day, it seemed pretty empty, whether on purpose or by happenstance, which probably raised the alarms that something was going to happen here. And yet it seemed almost that such violence would be… unnatural here. As though this was a place where that kind of attitude, that kind of mindset was forbidden. The wind whistled softly through the trees and it almost seemed as though the weather here was different than the rest of the surrounding area. As though it was blessed by something greater, whether one believed in it or not.

    At the top of what one could suppose was the main house, there was a wooden carving of a large bird, most likely a phoenix or some very similar mythological bird. Ironically, it did seem like this one had survived a very real fire, as it was charred black and bits of it had fallen off. It was likely that this was a victim of the wreckage that Ahab had told Mercury about during Tsubasa's trial, and that everything else had been rebuilt, with it being one of the only things to fully survive. Evidence of either a higher power or really, really sturdy wood.

    Following this theme of silence and tranquility, as Mercury reached the steps of the main house, a woman seemed to appear out of nowhere, almost as though she had been standing right behind one of the giant wooden pillars that held up the roof of the veranda. Betraying that sudden arrival, however, was an air of absolute peace surrounding the woman. A gentle smile seemed to naturally fall on her face and she wore garb fitting to the location, indicating that she was probably one of the people who lived or worked her. Completely grayed hair pulled back into a tight bun, she was much shorter than Mercury and walked with a hunch suggesting a bad back or simply old age. With each step she showed that there was no magical power to how she moved, she simply had on very quiet, comfortable slippers which, combined with the environment, left no noise.

    "Hello! You must be 'Basa's little friend," She said, approaching Mercury to shake her hand."It's lovely to meet you. I'm his mother, Tomeko Kageyama. You are... Mercury, correct? Come, come. Lunch is ready." She gestured towards the door as she turned and headed inside, trusting that Mercury would follow her. As she reached the indoors, she switched from the quiet outdoor slippers to fuzzier indoor ones. There were a row of guest slippers sitting in a neat row at the entrance, and the old woman gestured towards a pair and said, "If you please."

    As soon as Mercury switched out, she lead the way down the hall and said, "I do hope the sudden invitation didn't bother you, dear. Basa's been so busy but he asked me to send you a summons. I told him I thought it was a little formal but, oh well he's always been a bit… dramatic, I suppose. Have you seen his little show? You were in some of them, you know. Your magic tricks are very impressive." There was literally nothing betraying the pleasantry of her voice. It was literally the praise of an elderly woman who, while not quite understanding the depth of something, wanted to show support for it. It was, to put simply, praise from a loving mother.

    Or… Grandmother? Taking a moment to analyze her approximate age, and Tsubasa's age, it seemed quite literally impossible that she was his birth mother. He had never mentioned anything about him being adopted but, surely he would know if that were the case? Nevertheless, she was lead to a large dining room which looked almost like a cafeteria area for visitors, although there seemed to be a special table in the center for the Kageyama family. "Please, have a seat. I'll go and fetch the boys. Sadly, my daughter won't be joining us today. She works for a bank in the city, you know. Rarely has time for lunch visits." Again, there was nothing biting in what she was saying. She did quite seem to be apologetic that her daughter couldn't also join the lunch. Indeed there were seats prepared for six, although two of the plates and settings seemed to be roughly child sized. Or… squirrel sized. In just the time that it would take Mercury to look over the table, Tomeko was gone.
    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 4th July 2021, 1:41 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Mercury took her time walking through the shrine grounds, her keen eyes taking in its layout and filing the information away even as her brain ran simulations after simulation to try and ascertain all the various ways one could potentially get the jump on her in the area. It certainly wouldn’t have been her first choice for a trap location, but that didn’t mean it was without advantage. Swapping her vision over to infrared, she carefully scanned each of the buildings as she walked by, taking note of which ones had bodies in them. She wouldn’t have been able to pinpoint Tsubasa, of course. Ahab, perhaps, but only because of how small he was. The clone she’d made of Ahab would have been easily found as well, but the moment it had become clear that Tsubasa planned on keeping it Mercury had all but severed her connection to the pseudo creature, opting to leave her protege with his privacy. All things considered, though, there really weren’t a great deal of people present. The knowledge did little to settle her nerves.

    Despite the paranoia keeping her on high alert, she couldn’t help but stop to examine the prayer wall. The various wooden tablets had a great number of messages written upon them in various Earthland languages, most of which she could read. While Mercury did not understand the concept of prayer, it was hard to miss that this was clearly some place where people wrote out their desires -- a strange custom. She stared at it for a couple minutes with a perplexed frown, trying to comprehend the purpose such a wall might serve before giving up. While she had recently experienced a spiritual awakening and been forced to come to grips with the weight behind beings known as gods and demons and the like, the concept of religion still evaded her. At this point, she wasn’t sure she would ever fully understand the strange spiritual habits Earthlanders kept.

    She had to admit the place was strange, though. Something about it felt different in a way she couldn’t altogether describe. The air was calm, with nary but a gentle breeze swirling lightly between the buildings and rustling the leaves on the trees and the vibrant grass on the ground. There was a sense of tranquility here that could wash away even the deepest worries from all who set foot on the hallowed land. All, that was, except for Mercury. So unfamiliar was she with ideals of peace and contentment that the area only felt all the more… hostile. The only times she had ever experienced this kind of calm was before an attack; the quiet before the storm. The stillness here was so palpable that it was tickling upon the edges of her fight or flight reflexes. Out of all the bizarre, foreign, and even dangerous places she had visited since coming to this planet, this shrine by far felt the most alien to her in a way that she just couldn’t quite shake.

    Pulling herself away from the prayer wall, she made her way over to the main home, and as she reached the steps she was greeted by an older woman that seemed to have materialised out of nowhere. Mercury’s gaze snapped onto the woman, who seemed to physically personify the strange energy of this place. The lady greeted her warmly, acknowledging her understanding of who Mercury was as she stepped forward and offered a handshake. Green eyes glanced down at the proffered limb, hesitating for only a moment, before extending her own. As they shook, the woman introduced herself as Tomeko, Tsubasa’s mother. Granted she seemed a little old to have birthed him herself. Perhaps it was more a term of endearment than an admission of biological relation? Only time would tell.

    “That’s me!” Mercury affirmed, slipping easily into her more casual demeanor. Any hint of nervousness in her eyes or body language was gone without a trace in the blink of an eye as she gave Tomeko an easy smile. “It’s a pleasure to finally meet you, Mrs. Kageyama.” Tomeko invited her inside and Mercury obliged with her request to have her replace the shoes she had worn outside with the clean pair of slippers that had been provided for her, so as not to track dirt all over the home. As they walked through the hallways, the woman addressed the matter of the invitation and explained that Tsubasa had been quite busy since returning home. She admitted that the formal invitation had been a bit much, but then again her son was quite the dramatic sort, as anyone who knew him could attest.

    When she brought up Tsubasa’s show and Mercury’s appearances in it, the lavender haired woman chuckled lightly. “I’m no mage, ma’am. Just an engineer, though I suppose science could be interpreted as a form of magic. But, thank you, nonetheless.” Mercury took great pains to keep her magic abilities close to the chest, often taking extra steps to ensure that her abilities weren’t perceived as anything other than mundane -- if advanced -- science. This went doubly for when she was around Tsubasa, knowing the human had a habit of filming just about every minute of his life and posting it on the web. Granted, Tsubasa had spent more than enough time with her that he may have had his suspicions, but even if he did she doubted that she’d ever given him enough to confirm them.

    Tomeko led her to a dining room that had been set up much like a cafeteria. In the center was a table that was set up a bit differently from the others. Mercury could only assume it was the one set aside for the actual Kageyama clan. She gestured for Mercury to take a seat and advised that she would fetch “the boys”. It seemed there was to be a meal with Tsubasa and his family, though his sister was to be absent due to the demands of her day job. Before Mercury knew it the older woman was gone, leaving the Silver Wolf ace alone in the large dining room. Glancing about the room briefly, she carefully took a seat on one of the sides of the table, wishing that there was a wall a little closer to her back. Worrying about being exposed wouldn’t do her any good here, however. Despite her overly suspicious nature, Mercury’s analytical mind simply couldn’t stop drawing her back to the single conclusion that this was very unlikely to be an ambush or ruse of any kind. She was just going to have to relax.

    Taking a deep breath to calm her mind and nerves, she waited patiently for Tsubasa and his family to return.

    WORDS: 1126/6502 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 1st September 2021, 9:06 am

    WC
    439/6000 words
    TAGGED
    @Mercury Arseneault
    Our Mother has been absent
    Ever since we founded Rome


    "Oh yes, yes, science," She nodded along politely. "You know he's very particular when he explains those kinds of things. You'd think an old mind would be able to remember them but, oh, here I go," A good natured, if someone raspy chuckle as she gave her polite apology for the misinterpretation.

    —— —— —— ——

    She wouldn't be alone for long before she was joined by the first resident of the Kageyama house, the newest resident. He looked exactly like the Ahab that she knew, but wore a squirrel-sized neckerchief that was currently tied up around his ears, pushing them back like a makeshift hairnet. He fluttered into the room, landing on the table and landed in front of one of the appropriate plates, adjusting it a little.

    With the back of his hand, he rubbed his cheek and eye, much like a squirrel would, and looked up at her, "Tsu says it would creep you out if I call you Mom. Ahab said it would be hilarious." Taking off again, he aimed to land on her shoulder, although he wouldn't force himself if she seemed against it. Either way, he adjusted his neckerchief back to its resting spot around his neck, a slightly cavalier look off to the side. "I read all of the books here to find a name and it turns out my name is Ishmael." His pronunciation of the name rolled off in the classical sense, Ish-my-el, instead of the more casual pronunciation of Ish-mel. "We're calling me Ish. It's also a joke. Because I'm Ahab… ish."

    "I came ahead of the others because I wanted to, you know, see if I could stay here without any troubles. Tsu thinks that if he just says that I'm fine then I'm fine. He offers no hard data to back up the claim but there is not hope in his voice, rather certainty. Ahab doesn't talk about it much. That seems both impractical and entirely understandable. But I would like to know for certain, before the others get here. I like it here." Already there were subtle but noticeable differences between Ish and Ahab, the former's syntax more analytical and precise. Even his voice seemed to have a little more of a tine to it, compared to the rounded and lax way that Ahab spoke. Someone with a degree in something could likely spend time dissecting the minor differences that had already evolved out of them within the short period of time between his creation and the present.

    "No one has been secretive about my creation, but nor are they particularly knowledgable about the details. I think you know the most about how I was made, Mom."

    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 6th September 2021, 2:32 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Thankfully, Mercury wouldn’t have to sit in awkward solidarity for too long before a little green rodent hustled into the room with her. Or at least, it looked very convincingly like a real rodent. As the person who created it, however, Mercury knew better. It was the fake robotic copy of Ahab that Mercury had created, something she’d used to push Tsubasa to his limits without actually putting the real Ahab in danger. Her intention had been to decommission the creature when the test was over, but instead her pupil had elected to take it with him. In truth, she could have used the robot to keep an eye on Tsubasa from afar as well, as she was technically still connected to it, but after the way everything had ended Mercury had thought it best not to invade Tsubasa’s privacy. She owed him that much.

    The fake Ahab, sporting a handkerchief around his neck, looked up at her and informed her that Tsubasa had advised him to not call Mercury mom, thinking it would be creepy. On the flip side, the real Ahab had found the idea amusing. Mercury smirked at him, her anxiety at the situation curbed just a bit by the humor. “All things considered, it wouldn’t exactly be inappropriate, I suppose.” He leapt up to her shoulder and Mercury didn’t discourage him. Even if she wasn’t entirely sure about Tsubasa’s intentions for inviting her here, and even if her instincts were keeping her paranoid in this all-too-serene place, she knew that it would have been impossible for this particular creature to have been reprogrammed to target her in any way.

    As she reached up and gave him a gentle stroke along his chest with the backs of her fingers, he explained that he had been reading a number of books on the property to find an appropriate name for himself, and had gone with Ishmael. Tsu and Ahab were calling him Ish for short, turning a little joke out of how close he was to being Ahab, but not really. “So does that make Tsubasa the whale? Because I feel like he would have something to say about that comparison.”

    Ish went on to explain that he had chosen to come ahead of the others because he was hoping to speak with her alone, primarily to ask her if he could continue to stay with Tsu and Ahab. He told her that Tsubasa seemed of the mindset that no permission needed to be granted, and while Ish could isolate the determination in Tsubasa’s voice there was no data to support the claim. Ahab seemed to not really have an opinion one way or another on the matter, which was both weird and yet also made sense to the cybernetic clone. But for his own sanity, he’d needed to speak with her to know for sure, as he truly liked it there and wanted to stay.

    Mercury regarded the creature with a thoughtful expression. He was certainly more academic in tone and inflection than Ahab was, though given his origins that was hardly a surprise. He was a product of science and technology, a fact that those around them were aware of, if not in detail, but as he surmised Mercury knew that better than anyone else. After a moment of silent consideration, Mercury held out an open palm for him to climb onto so she could hold him in front of her and talk to him without having to crane her neck. “The truth is, Ish, I don’t really think that’s up to me anymore. I didn’t really have plans for you outside of what I had set up, though I really should have realized that Tsubasa would want to keep you when all was said and done. Essentially, you are an android. A very realistic one, at that; practically a full artificial intelligence unit. I only programmed you with basic protocols and functions, but one of the key programs I installed was the ability to observe and adapt to the world around you -- to learn. At the time, that was a short sighted goal with only one scenario in mind, but now that you have outlived those plans… Frankly, even I don’t know what your true limitations are.”

    “Either way, you are your own person now, kiddo, and free to make your own choices. So if you wish to stay with Tsu and Ahab, and they wish to keep you, then it sounds like this is where you belong. You’ll just need to be careful about making sure you are selective about who learns of your true nature. You are a highly advanced product of engineering that most of the world has never seen before. There are many people who would not respect you as a living, sentient creature should they discover that you were built with rods and wires rather than blood and bones.” Not only would that put Ishmael in danger, but it could also endanger Tsubasa and Ahab, even Mercury if anyone traced the work back to her. Ishmael was technically alien technology, and many scientists on Earthland -- even well meaning ones -- would jump at the chance to pull him apart to try and recreate her work.

    But she elected not to mention that. It was best that Ish make the choice based on what he wanted, and not out of fear of the off chance that he might bring harm to those he cared about just for existing. “That being said, if it’s okay with you and Tsu, I could make a few adjustments to you later. Things that could help you protect yourself and increase your capacity to acquire and utilize other skills. You’d just have to let me know what you want to do.”

    There was a brief pause as she let him think that over. Then, looking around and checking her sensors to make sure no one was on the verge of walking in on them right away, Mercury looked back down at the cybernetic squirrel and with a quiet voice asked, “So… How has Tsu been..?”

    WORDS: 1021/7523 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 20th September 2021, 8:54 am

    WC
    700/6700 words
    When we are older you'll understand
    It's enough, when I say so


    "When we finally explained the context to him, he listened to the book on recording — since reading still isn't very easy for him — and at first he likened himself to the ship itself." He explained, "Although this was in a time when his mood was quite dour as the fate of the ship is quite sorrowful. I believe it was a method of self-expression, because a few days later as he rallied the conversation came up again and he likened himself to Starbuck, simply because, as he put it, How cool of a name is that?. I think you will agree that this is a little more in character for him."

    He scampered onto her hand and listened thoughtfully to her explanation, seeming to stare down at her wrist as he took in the information, likely finding a focus point on which to concentrate while he assessed what she was willing to tell him, no doubt unaware that he was not getting all of the information. When she finished speaking of blood and bone, he looked at his own tiny hands instead and flexed his fingers. Clearly this was something that had crossed his mind before, and he was aware of his own construction and had indeed heard it from others, but hearing it from his creator was a confirmation that he had either longed for or dreaded. His attention perked back as she continued about giving him defensive measures.

    He considered this as well, then nodded, "Provided that it would not be a huge risk to do so, I would like to be able to contribute when we begin adventuring again. If you could provide me with roughly the same skills and abilities as Ahab himself, I think that would put us on even ground without me becoming some sort of overwhelming destructive force. I feel that would cause some contemplative issues within as I would start to question the malleability and therefore permanence of my, as you said, rods and wires."

    There was a pause before he added, "Ahab will ask you to put a machine gun in my arm. Please do not put a machine gun in my arm. This has been discussed."

    At the next question he turned around and his ear twitched before he said, "They are almost here and I would not betray Tsu's trust by giving too much information on his current and previous state, but I believe it is safe to tell you that he has taken his magic… back to school, as it were. Top down rearrangements of everything that he has acquired up until this point. From the moment he arrived, he also began training with his Father again, a monk and master martial artist — two things that often go hand in hand, I surmise — in order to retrain his mind and body. He does seem more… chipper than he was previously. I doubt you will notice a difference in him. Except for the missing eye that he sacrificed in exchange for untold demonic power."

    There was a beat before Ish added, "I'm kidding."


    And indeed, true to his statement, Tsubasa came around from behind the kitchen carrying a large pot of some kind. It seemed he had not heard the conversation as he said, "Hey M-Miss Mercury! I hope Ish isn't bugging you too much. What are you guys talking about?" It seemed that Ish had been right on the money in stating that Tsu had been physically training, as he looked quite a bit more toned and refined since they had last met. His hair was a bit longer, likely something that his Mother had gotten onto him about, although it seemed to be properly styled and set, indicating that it was -- or had become -- something of a choice to keep it that way. And yet, despite how much he had seemed to grow in the short time between their meetings, he was undoubtedly still Tsubasa. The smile on his face was as innocent and dopey as ever, and his eyes (both there) carried the same positive energy of someone seeing a version of the world that he couldn't help but love.

    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 11th October 2021, 6:40 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    Mercury chuckled lightly as Ish explained the path of comparison Tsu had gone through in finding his place within the Moby Dick series amongst both the appropriately named squirrels. “Yes, that sounds much more like Tsubasa,” she agreed, though there was a strange pain in her chest at the thought of the young man spending any time at all equating himself to the ill fated ship. It was an odd sensation that she wasn’t used to feeling, one she couldn’t really explain, and one that had become more frequent in recent months. She didn’t like it.

    So, in typical Mercury fashion, she elected to ignore it for now, intent on focusing on the interaction at hand. Ish inquired as to his origins and Mercury elected to be up front with him, seeing no reason to keep him in the dark. The only thing she didn’t tell him was specifically that he was crafted from alien technology. There were only two people on Earthland that knew what she truly was, and Tsubasa was not one of them, nor did she intend for him to find out… though at this point she wasn’t entirely sure if that was for her own protection or for his. The robotic squirrel fixated on a spot on her wrist as he processed everything, and when she was done he nodded his understanding, expressing his wish to have at least enough augmentations perform so as to allow him to be on par with Ahab -- who apparently was quite keen on Ish having a machine gun in his arm.

    Her smirk deepened, emerald eyes twinkling with mischief. “Aw, c’mon. Not even a tiny one? It could be fun.” Then, after a brief moment, she continued in a more serious tone. “I would be more than happy to make some adjustments for you. We’ll make some time to discuss it.”

    Shortly after that, she gathered her courage to ask about Tsu’s wellbeing. Ish politely informed her that his state was for Tsu alone to update her on, but he did reveal that apparently her protege had been hard at work since returning home, training with his father and revamping his magic from the ground up. From the sounds of it, Tsubasa hadn’t left himself much down time. That being said, he seemed happy, or at least happier than he was back when Ish had first been brought into the world. The only real difference was that he was missing an eye that had been exchanged for phenomenal demonic abilities.

    She snorted at the joke. “Nothing wrong with a little deal with the devil here and there.,” the Xocili teased, Ish quite unaware that Mercury herself had made deals with not one but two demons for power in the past, power that had aided her greatly in creating Ishmael himself.

    It was about that time that Tsubasa finally entered the room, balancing a large pot of some kind in his hands. He greeted her like barely any time at all had passed. In fact, he greeted her as though the last time they spoke he hadn’t been so angry as to punch her in the face. A weird emotion of… something… washed over her, though it was masked by her perfect poker face as she once more brushed her personal feelings aside and smirked at him. “Oh you know, Ish here was just sharing with me about how you spend your mornings in front of a mirror, practicing and coming up with zingy one liners for your Lactube videos.”

    No matter how he talked to her, she could see that he wasn’t the same person that had walked away from her weeks ago. His hair was longer, and he was a bit more toned from all the training he’d been doing with his dad. Hell, he looked pretty damn good, actually. Was it appropriate for her to think of her own student as being so attractive? Probably not, but frankly Mercury had crossed worse lines. “Do you need any help..?” she offered as she started to stand to her feet.

    WORDS: 681/8204 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 18th December 2021, 5:58 am

    WC
    645 words
    TAGGED
    @Mercury Arseneault
    Do you know about her strength and convictions
    Or how she puts all her faith in religion


    "Hey come on don't lie about stuff like that," Tsu responded, almost sounding serious for a moment, before cracking a grin. "All of my quips are entirely authentic and impromptu. Any notebooks filled with witty banter are entirely unrelated."

    As he brought the pot to the table, setting it down in the middle he nodded and said, "Yeah actually if you could grab— there's like a rice bucket—"

    "Asking guests to help set the table? Were you raised in a barn?" A raspy voice came from the kitchen. The owner of the voice revealed himself a moment later, an old man hunched over carrying the rice bowl, which did indeed seem to resemble a type of wooden bucket, to the table. He, much like Tsubasa's mother, looked far too old to be the parent of a late teen. In fact, if possible, he looked even older. Mercury's keen senses might even pick up a hint that his aging wasn't entirely natural, but rather came from some sort of outside influence, whether magical or otherwise.

    Still, he moved with the same grace that Tsu's mother had, almost gliding along the floor as if he were barely walking at all. Most notably, atop his head was a strange toupee of sorts, that looked more than a little out of place upon his noggin.

    "No, I was raised in an ancient temple with two old coots." Tsubasa responded with all the knowitallism of that kid in class who memorized the textbook. "Besides, she's not a guest," He added, "She's Miss Mercury." This was clearly meant to be a compliment. Somehow.

    "Right right. The teacher." The elderly man said. He set the bowl down on the table and turned to Mercury, his voice softening towards her, "You'll forgive my gruff nature, I hope. Somewhere after your two hundredth birthday, you just stop giving a shit. Gonnohyoe Kageyama, the Grand Priest of this temple."

    "You can't be a grand priest if there are no other priests." Tomeko, Tsubasa's mother chimed in.

    He shot his wife a playful glare, "Well then I'm just Grand." Gonnohyoe responded. Turning back to Mercury, he gave a nod of his head. "It is a pleasure to meet you, Mercury. Please, sit."

    As he gestured towards her seat and made his way to his own, his toupee opened one eye. Seeing that it was food time, Ahab leapt from Gonnohyoe's head and floated down to his own spot.

    Meanwhile, Tsubasa had been serving everyone. It seemed that today's meal would be a homemade curry and rice. Steaming plates of fresh white rice and a beautiful golden-brown sauce was plated quite well on each person (and pet's) plate, a feast for the eyes as well. "Let's eat!"

    "Prayer first," Tomeko said gently. She turned to Mercury, "Don't feel obligated to join in, dear. It's just our way."

    The other four clasped their hands together, but rather than the traditional palms together praying gesture, they held their left hand at almost an upside down V and clasped their right over it, covering the knuckles with their palms.

    The Grand Priest lead the prayer. "The spirits of the land that give us sustenance. Our bodies will return to feed the land. The spirits of our ancestors bless our meals. We will bless the meals of our descendants."

    And that seemed to be it. They unclasped their hands and Tomeko gestured to Mercury to dig in.

    "Now then," Gonnohyoe said as he took a fork to the rice, "What exactly are all of my son's vital weaknesses?"

    "Dad!"

    "Gon!"

    "What? She'd know better than anyone!" He turned back to Mercury and said, "What do you think? How could I kill him?" This didn't seem to be any kind of threat or insult towards her. Rather an actual request for an assessment of his pupil, combined with some playful banter.

    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 1st February 2022, 6:16 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    “You forget that I’ve actually walked in on you rehearsing your lines,” Mercury teased her pupil. She asked if there was anything she could help with, standing to her feet as he started to describe some kind of bucket of rice, only to be interrupted by his father who scolded him for having guests help set the table. The man looked far too old to be Tsubasa’s parent, much like his mother had. It was hard to tell if that really was his age or if something had happened to him to make him appear older than he was. Anything was possible, she supposed.

    Mercury watched in amused silence as the family bantered back and forth with one another, which explained a lot about Tsubasa’s own personality. He clearly had a good relationship with his parents, which was heartwarming to witness, even for someone as mal-adjusted as Mercury who had never experienced that kind of familial bond. As if it was his cue, his father turned to introduce himself to her after setting the aforementioned bucket of rice on the table. He asked her to dismiss his mannerisms, explaining that it was hard to give a shit about certain things after two centuries of life. Mercury honestly had no idea if that was actually how old he was or if he was just teasing; to her knowledge, Earthlanders only lived about half such a lifespan on average. But Mercury’s own species was exceptionally long lived and as such those kind of numbers for age weren’t really that out of the ordinary in her experience, so she just elected to roll with it.

    “The pleasure is mine, Grand Priest Kageyama. Thank you for having me in your home.” She may not have much direct exposure to religious institutions, but she did know enough to be respectful about using people’s titles. At his insistence, she sat back down at the table and resigned herself to not helping with anything. As he sat, the toupee that had been looking suspiciously out of place shifted to reveal Ahab, who hopped down to his own place without saying anything. Meanwhile, Tsu went around plating bowls of curry and rice for everyone, which smelled absolutely scrumptious. Before they could dig in, however, his mother insisted on the tradition of prayer, though she politely informed Mercury that she did not need to feel obligated to join.

    Matters of faith and religion were still things that Mercury had never quite felt like she really understood, despite all her research, and the thought of going along with it just for the sake of blending in felt awkward. So, she merely nodded her understanding and waited patiently while the Kageyamas put their hands together, with Gonnohyoe giving a brief prayer, and then it was over. At the invitation to do so, Mercury picked up her fork and scooped up a bit of the food, putting it to her mouth. She had not over stuffed her mouth, keeping the portion to a size that wouldn’t be uncouth, but that didn’t stop her from choking slightly on the mouthful as the Grand Priest opened up with outright asking Mercury what all of his son’s weaknesses were.

    Even as his wife and son practically barked at him, Mercury somehow managed to keep the food in her mouth without coughing it all over the place. It took her only a moment to compose herself and swallow the bite, her mind racing at how to answer his question and wondering just how much of her little “test” his family was aware of. As always, humor was her go-to cover for buying herself time to answer or address awkward statements, so once her mouth was clear she flashed the older man a small smirk. “Well you know, I’ve actually put a lot of thought into that. Right now, my leading theory is that the most effective method of assassination would be to trap him in a small cage of some kind that’s enchanted to rain constantly inside, and his only escape is to read Paradise Lost all the way through in the original Bellia translation.”

    Giving them a moment to digest her own wit, she took another polite bite of the curry and swallowed it before giving a more sober answer. “If I’m being honest, his only true weakness is just inexperience, and there’s only so much control he has over that. But he’s exceptionally intelligent and remarkably adaptive, which are the two best tools to overcome that. And I’m not just saying that to earn brownie points.” She smirked again briefly, flashing a playful look toward Tsubasa before sobering down again, her next words slow and carefully articulated as though she were having to really put thought into what she was saying to make sure she was expressing her thoughts concisely.

    “Outside of that, I’m sorry to admit that I’m not entirely sure how to answer your question. As I’m sure you’ve noticed, I’m fairly young myself; not much older than Tsubasa, in fact. I’ve never been in a position before to mentor anyone before him, and honestly never thought I would be. I didn’t really have a mentor figure of my own growing up, so it’s a bit of foreign territory for me all around. The truth is, he is teaching me things as much as I am trying to teach him, and at this point… I’m not entirely sure which of us is learning more about ourselves along the way.” It was a humble, if somewhat sheepish, admission, but the truth nonetheless.

    WORDS: 930/9134 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 8th February 2022, 3:36 am

    WC
    672/8015 words
    TAGGED
    @Mercury Arseneault
    I don't know
    When things will be
    Back in our control



    Her response drew laughter from the Grand Priest and Ahab, a more polite chuckle from Ishmael and a begrudged smirk from Tsubasa. Although his mother seemed to refrain from any kind of smile, it was probably because she was less than enthused about talking on the subject of Tsubasa's theoretical death. Still, she kept any objections to herself, as she knew well enough that no one at the table was speaking seriously.

    As Merc let it sink in, Ahab chipped in, "She's right, that would do it." He was less polite than Mercury, speaking as he was chewing. This drew the tiniest bonk on his noggin with a grinning Gonnohyoe's fingertip on the top of his head.

    "No, yeah, absolutely," Tsu admitted, "I would quite simply roll over and die."

    As Merc delivered her actual answer, the rest of the table seemed enraptured by her response. Both the Grand Priest and his wife nodded along knowingly. Her brief pause gained smiles from three of the five others at the table, but they quickly nodded into seriousness with the next portion of her comment. Meanwhile Tsubasa almost seemed as though Santa had just pulled off his beard and stepped off of his boots and just revealed himself to be a fat goblin.

    There was a calm silence in the air after she finished, while the elders (and Ishmael) absorbed the knowledge, and the younger two looked a little squirmy. Not necessarily negative but more in the sense that they had known this to an extent but had never wanted to hear it.

    "Humble knowledge of your own experience is the mark of a growing master," Tomeko offered, extending a gentle hand towards Mercury, as though to ensure her that they had positively received her comment. "I think my husband and I share a reassurance that our boy is being taught by someone who's so aware of her own situation."

    "Yeah that's what the first kid is for," Gonnohyoe added, "You make all the mistakes with that one and your next student will be better." He looked at Tsu, "That's what happened with your older brother."

    "I don't have an older brother." Tsu said.

    "That's how I learned kids aren't flammable."

    Ahab chuckled. Tsu looked confused.

    Turning back to Mercury, the Grand Priest offered, "From our little practice sessions recently, I can tell that you're exactly right. I appreciate your honesty. And if I can take my turn to be honest, I've never exactly been the biggest fan of the… permanence of this lifestyle." He looked fondly over to Tsubasa as he spoke. The boy himself was momentarily distracted from the conversation by serving seconds to Ahab and Ishmael. "I tried to convince myself that the boy would go off on his computer adventures then come back to take my place in the temple… but it seems as though the quiet life was never going to sit right with our Basa. It's best for Tomeko and I to come to terms with this sooner, rather than later. Nevertheless, and quite possibly as a result, it's my estimation the two of you have reached a point where your relationship has to change."

    Having come back into the conversation at some point, Tsubasa's cheeks definitely didn't redden.

    "Haha gross."

    Ignoring that, Gonnohyoe continued, "Therefore, if it's acceptable with you, from one teacher to another, I would like to know if you think Tsubasa is ready to graduate. With your permission, I would like to take the boy under my wing again and bring him along to the next level. It might require some time away for a bit, we'll be returning to our ancestral home in Midi for a time, by which I mean I can't exactly put a time frame on his return. It's one of those 'He'll be ready when he's ready' things. But you're one of his closest friends and his first real teacher. So I wouldn't want to subject him to that without your approval. I hope you understand what I'm saying."
    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    Last edited by Tsubasa Kageyama on 11th April 2022, 9:30 am; edited 1 time in total


    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 28th February 2022, 5:10 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    If nothing else, it would be painfully evident that Mercury did understand Tsubasa quite well, seeing as her theory about the best way to torture him was pretty much dead on accurate, even if it was just a joke. However, in an odd twist of abnormality Mercury chose to carry on the rest of her answer with far more sobriety, earning the respect of Tsu’s parents and a mixture of comical horror and discomfort from both Tsu and Ahab. And frankly, it was obvious that her own honesty was a bit foreign for Mercury as well. She was grateful for Gonnohyoe’s timely intervention of humor as he teased about the first students being little more than experiments and guinea pigs more than anything else, his jests about a supposed older brother going right over Tsubasa’s head.

    Smirking in genuine amusement, she turned her attention back to the older man as he admitted his agreement with Mercury’s assessment of Tsubasa’s skills. From there he provided her with some insight of his own, explaining that he had hoped his son would go out and get his adventerous nature out of his system before returning home to settle down and take over the temple. Instead, he’d had to accept that that simply wasn’t the lifestyle that Tsubasa wanted, and because of that he had to make an adjustment for educating his son moving forward. In turn, that meant that the boy’s relationship with Mercury would have to change.

    Aside from a brief twinkling of amusement shot toward Ahab as he joked about their relationship changing, and at least letting Tsubasa feel like she hadn’t noticed his blush, Mercury kept her focus on the grand priest as he more or less asked for Mercury’s permission to resume being an active mentor figure in Tsubasa’s life, continuing his training personally from home for a while. An expression of surprise crossed Mercury’s face, the woman caught off guard by the request for a number of reasons. “I do understand,” she assured him, buying herself a split second to formulate her answer. After a moment of thought, she said, “I appreciate the gesture, but truthfully I think that decision is up to Tsubasa. I have done my best to guide him as well as I can since he joined Silver Wolf, but he is not beholden to me. He is free to follow his own path to growth in any manner that he sees fit.”

    She turned her attention toward Tsubasa once more. “If staying home for a time is what you feel you must or want to do for your personal growth, then that’s the path you’ve gotta follow. I’m here to give you pointers where I can and to push you out of your comfort zone when you need it, but I’m not here to make decisions about your life and where it leads. So if you want to make an adjustment for a while, you have my support. No matter what, you are and always will be a member of Silver Wolf, and when you are ready to return we’re not going to hesitate to welcome you back.” At the end of the day, the choice was entirely up to him. Mercury’s job was not to control his life, and while she could impart to him as much of the little wisdom she had, no one truly knew what was best for him better than he himself.

    Once matters were decided, the group went back to the dinner and from there things were a bit more casual and lighthearted. A good thing, considering both Tsubasa and Mercury weren’t exactly the greatest at holding serious conversations, particularly with one another. They were both out of their element in that regard, and getting back to some sense of normalcy was a relief.

    When all was said and done, Mercury would at least offer to help with any dinner clean up. Whether or not they allowed her to actually do so, she would thank the grand priest and his wife graciously for the meal and their generosity in inviting her to their home. Before heading out, she asked Tsubasa for a private moment of his time and the pair made their way outside of the main home where she walked the grounds slowly back toward the entrance of the temple grounds. There was a long moment of silence as she struggled with figuring out what she wanted to say and how she wanted to say it, and in her nervousness she defaulted to her most comfortable defense mechanism: humor.

    “Well, I think it’s safe to say now that I’ve met your parents your dad and I are probably going to be swapping notes for some time on the best ways to torment you. I hope you’re prepared for that.” She flashed him a small, impish grin before turning her attention forward once more. When she spoke again a moment later, her voice was softer. “I’m going to be honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect when I came here tonight. When I got that invitation, I was a bit wary, all things considered…”

    Finally, she stopped walking and, with a small sigh, turned to face him fully. “Listen, Tsu… about what I put you through… It was wrong. And I’m sorry.” She could only imagine her apologizing to him was the last thing he was expecting, and it would likely make him squirm uncomfortably, but unfortunately she didn’t stop there. Fighting through her own pride and embarrassment, she continued. “I know you know that this is my first go around of being in this kind of a position, but the truth is a lot more complicated than just that. I grew up in a very harsh, hostile environment, to put it mildly. I’m not… I’m not used to looking for the good in the world around me, like you and your parents do. I’m used to looking for the danger, for the threats and red flags, and having to do whatever it takes to protect myself and to survive.”

    It was the most she had ever told him about her past, and while it wasn’t exceptionally detailed it was more than enough to paint a very bleak picture of Mercury’s world view for him, revealing that all her humor and charm and abundant confidence was a heavy front covering a scarred and traumatized life. She was having a hard time meeting his eyes as she talked, and there were subtle gaps and pauses between her words as she fought to find the right ones even as she worked out what all she wanted to say. “I know what I did was harsh, and that it put you in danger. I’d say that wasn’t my intent, but that would be a lie. The only teacher I ever had was cold reality and necessity, and I’m starting to realize that those methods aren’t the kind of things I should be imposing on you. But the truth is that life often is cruel, and I may not always be around to shield you from that or face it on your behalf, and…”

    Her voice trailed off as she seemed to be on the cusp of admitting, or at least hinting toward, a part of her life that still left the security of her safety in question. Instead of continuing down that line of thought, she shook her head and changed course, finally raising her emerald gaze to meet his eyes. “When you left, you told me that you understood that you still had things to work on. That was when I realized I had failed. The point of all that was never to point out your flaws; it was to show you how powerful you have become. I just… wanted you to have the confidence to know that you are strong enough to handle anything that comes your way, and that you are more than capable of protecting yourself and the ones you care about, so long as you keeping pushing forward and never give up.”

    WORDS: 1346/10,480 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Tsubasa Kageyama
    Tsubasa Kageyama

    Main Account- Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Demon Slayer- Christian Minecraft Server- Achiever- Magic Application Approved!- Obtain A Secondary Magic!- Character Application Approved!- Complete Your First Job!- Obtain A Lineage!- Player 
    Lineage : Adventurer’s Spirit
    Position : None
    Faction : The Ironheart Pact
    Posts : 261
    Guild : Silver Wolf
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 273,376

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Hodgepodge
    Second Magic: XVI Battle Suit
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Tsubasa Kageyama 11th April 2022, 9:43 am

    WC
    965/8980 words
    TAGGED
    @Mercury Arseneault
    If you put this scene
    On a movie screen
    Is it called a happy end?



    As had been pointed out throughout this meeting and never in an offensive way, in so many ways, Tsubasa remained a growing young man. There were several skills in which he lacked both social and academic. Not to say he was unintelligent by any means, in fact as both of his teachers had both graciously pointed out, he was extremely quick on the uptake. And yet there were matters that confounded him beyond reason. Still, hearing the explanations from others helped him fully understand his own feelings better than he would if he took the time to contemplate them himself. Granted, this was something that he was taught to do, being the son of a priest who frequently meditated, but combined with his general personality and neuro-divergency, this was something with which he was rarely successful, particularly compared to his sister.

    So as much as he could, while the "adults" were talking, he mentally configured himself to focus on his own thoughts and decisions regarding the topic. He'd had a lot of fun training with Mercury and it was undeniable that he had increased in skill several times over, but he had found himself at somewhat of a plateau in terms of growth. This, in his mind, was what had set him up for the fall following his… incident with Mercury. And in moving beyond, he knew that he would need to take what he had learned from her and apply it back again at the base level. This was, after all, part of what he had learned throughout his youth: that the process of growth could only be done through creation and destruction cyclically. At her side, he had experienced a level of unparalleled creation.

    He now had to enter a phase of destruction.

    And as an unfortunate effect of his mind tending to rush at a thousand times the average person, there were times when he would begin a sentence while not knowing the middle and yet arrive precisely where he wanted in the end. Therefore, as she was preparing to leave, he hurried back into his room and then into the kitchen and rounded back just as his parents had bid their final farewells.

    He walked with her to the gates, keeping his hands carefully behind his back. He listened to her, in earnest, with the due diligence of someone who was listening to learn rather than listening to speak next. Throughout the conversations today, all of them had given him a better understanding of her perspective, but none more than her final explanation to him.

    He was quiet for a little bit, clearly gathering his thoughts, before he said, "I think… that we both might have misjudged what we wanted out of our last meeting as teacher and student. I understand that you wanted to show me my own strength. I wanted you to not… put my squirrel in a blender." The meager smile on his face gave away that there was more levity than not.

    "With the benefit of hindsight, I do understand what you were going for. And I appreciate it. But… in all honesty, I don't think that I needed a final test to show me that I had gotten strong enough to protect people I care about. I knew that I had done so just by being at your side. And that's… really not to say that I don't want to be your student anymore or anything. I just gotta… kinda… do this, I think. This new training. But I don't think I would have been ready for it if I hadn't been under you. Trained… under you. I think. And I know you did your best. And I think that was good. And I'm happy to carry it on to the next step. So you did right by me. And I..."

    The sentence floated in the air, ellipses hanging thick above the conversation like an oncoming torrent before "And I just—"

    He finally removed his arms from behind his back and revealed what he'd at least tried to hide from her. It was a small boxed lunch wrapped in a white cloth, which featured the Kageyama family crest embroidered into it. "There's a… tradition in my parents' homeland that before a battle, a warrior could be presented with a… a meal from a loved one. And this is of course super different from... Because you're not going to-- And by lov-- I… I mean it's kind of like a…"

    He found it really difficult to look her in the eyes, but forced himself to. He spoke with a strange halted determination of someone who would continue pressing buttons until this goddamn plane landed one way or another, "I mean look it's absolutely impossible to miss that I'm young and I've got just like… all of the hormones and you're… outrageously attractive." He held his hands in a defensive position immediately and tried to backtrack.  "And I'm not… I don't want any kind of… that. But I just… My brain was saying like 'hey it might be cool to ask for a goodbye kiss now that she's not your teacher' and then to other parts of my brain that felt weird because we've killed zombies together but I didn't want you going away without knowing that I— I care about you. And stuff. And—" He gestured to the cloth, "It's got our family emblem on it. You can only get them here. I actually… sewed this one myself. So that's… that's pretty special."

    The statement ended rather lamely before he offered the boxed meal to her and said, "I just don't want you for a second to think that I'm gonna forget you while I'm gone. And it would be super cool if you didn't forget me."

    STATS

    HP: 000
    MP: 000
    Current Durations: Spell Name 0/0
    Current Cooldowns: Spell Name 0/0
    Spell1:
    Spell 2:
    Abilities Used:
    Weapons Used:
    ivyleaf33 of FTRP




    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    Let us use our hands to help and hold...

    ... let us pour love into the Mighty Soul.
    Mercury Arseneault
    Mercury Arseneault

    Quality Badge Level 1- Quality Badge Level 2- Quality Badge Level 3- Player 
    Lineage : Gold Rush
    Position : None
    Posts : 526
    Cosmic Coins : 0
    Dungeon Tokens : 0
    Experience : 2,194,802

    Character Sheet
    First Magic: Gunblade Master
    Second Magic: Mecha Primordial Slayer
    Third Magic:

    The Food Chain Empty Re: The Food Chain

    Post by Mercury Arseneault 16th April 2022, 3:02 pm

    Mercury Banner
    Cunning is the art of concealing our own defects
    and discovering other peoples' weaknesses.
    He listened to her words as carefully as he always did. Tsubasa had always been an eager learner, which was part of the reason that she liked him so much and had found herself in a position to be a more personal mentor figure to him. Mercury had never viewed herself as much of a teacher, mostly because she earnestly felt like she didn’t have that much to pass along, but Tsu had always been fun and about as quick of a learner as she herself was. She appreciated his carefree innocence, which was something she’d never truly been able to experience for herself given her upbringing. But in a way, too, she had been wary of his seeming ignorance to the colder realities of the world, knowing that it could leave him unprepared and hurt someday. Specifically, for a conflict that she herself knew that she was very likely to cause…

    But that didn’t make her actions right, and as unfamiliar as she was with trying to patch things up with really anyone except for Vandrad, she had to make an effort. Tsubasa deserved that and more from her. When she finally finished speaking, more than a little nervous considering some rather sensitive facts she’d briefly touched on about her own secretive personal life, he took a moment to consider her words before finally admitting that he felt like the two of them had really approached their last meeting from two completely different angles. She had wanted to teach him confidence, and he had simply not wanted Ahab to die.

    Mercury nodded gently, a light smirk tugging on her lips as his comment had been delivered more on the humorous side though her own expression was a bit muted. She hadn’t put the real Ahab in danger, of course, and had never meant to. But what she had been aiming for was to make Tsu believe that the danger was real, knowing that was truly the only way to push someone past their limitations. Still, that didn’t mean there wasn’t a twinge of guilt over the matter.

    Her former pupil acknowledged that he understood what she had been going for now, given that he’d had time to reflect over everything and cool down. That being said, he felt that the challenge hadn’t really been necessary. He already knew he was strong enough to protect those he cared for, and that was something he had learned simply by spending time with her and learning from her. From there he explained that he had not lost interest in necessarily being her student, but he had simply realized that, at least for the time being, he had learned everything he could from her. And now, it was simply time to move on to the next phase of his life and shake things up so he could continue to be sufficiently challenged.

    He began to fumble with his words for a moment, his sudden anxiety drawing her attention back to him, her emerald gaze watching him carefully before he pulled his hands in front of him and revealed a small box wrapped within a white cloth. She took note of the crest of his family that had been carefully embroidered into the material, and a quick swap of her vision settings told her that what laid within was a box with food. With a curious frown, she listened quietly as he haltingly explained about a tradition amongst his people wherein they provided a meal to someone they cared for. Well, the term he used was “loved” one, which was a much more intimate expression that struck a certain cord within Mercury. She knew he wasn’t professing any sort of romantic love toward her, so she certainly didn’t jump to that conclusion, but that didn’t mean that she didn’t understand on some level that this was his way of saying that he really deeply appreciated her presence in his life – sentiments the likes of which she had only ever really heard from Vandrad, before. And for a woman like Mercury who had spent practically her entire life in isolation with no one to support her but herself, it was difficult for her to process the emotions that she was feeling in that moment.

    As patient as ever, she remained silent as he continued to stumble his way through his explanation, stopping at one point to take a hard detour in a direction that she was not expecting as he half-joked-but-also-sort-of-really-not-jokingly teased that he understood, on some level, that he was a young man with certain bodily functions that released chemicals in his head when he was looking at her. Despite how awkward things had been at that moment, Mercury couldn’t help but return to form at the comment as her posture relaxed and a small, somewhat knowing smirk settled onto her lips. Still, she let him finish uninterrupted as he took the long way around toward his point that he simply wanted her to understand that he cared about her, even after what she had done. He had even taken the time to embroider the cloth himself, just to ensure that it was extra meaningful – and it was, in a way that Mercury would probably never be eloquent or self-aware enough to put into words. Finally, he held the box out for her to take before concluding by saying he was not going to forget about her, and he just hoped that she wouldn’t forget him either.

    After only a brief pause, Mercury slowly reached out and took the parcel in hand. She looked down at it for a long, quiet moment as her brain struggled to come up with appropriate words to convey what she wanted to say before she eventually looked up at him with a smile that was a mixture between playful and sincere. “Tsubasa, I could live for a thousand years and I would never, ever forget about you.” Then, before he would get a chance to say anything else or even protest, Mercury leaned forward and gave him a kiss right on the lips, the gesture gentle at first but deepening after a moment as she committed herself to something much more intimate than a simple peck. After several long seconds of very un-teacher-like behavior, she pulled back and gave him another smile. “Thank you.”

    Once the moment had lingered for an appropriate time – so at not to brush off or cheapen what had just taken place – Mercury gave him a small nod. “Well, I have to get back to the guild to get some work done. And I’m sure you’re eager to start your next chapter. Thank you for having me over. I really enjoyed spending time with your family, and it was good to see you and Ahab again. I had a small talk with Ish to answer some of his questions and he’s got a few things he needs to decide about his own life moving forward, but if there is something he decides he needs from me, don’t hesitate to contact me. I’ll see you when I see you, champ.”

    As far as Mercury was concerned, this wasn’t any sort of permanent goodbye. It was likely she wasn’t going to see Tsubasa for quite some time to come, but for a woman who’s species lived for thousands of years, time was a bit of a relative concept. She knew she would see him again eventually, so there wasn’t any reason to linger or draw things out. Pulling out her hoverdisc, Mercury stepped onto the floating device and prepared to leave, only to stop. “Oh, and before I forget.” Turning back toward him, she pulled another device out of the pack on her thigh, tossing it down to him. When he caught it, he would find it to be a storage drive chip for his computer. While she didn’t reveal its contents to him, once he plugged it in he would find that it was a video recording of the tests that she had put him through, providing cinematic footage of all the stunts that he had performed. “Just in case you thought I wouldn’t realize how badly you’d want copies of those.”

    With a teasing wink she gave him one last wave farewell before her hoverdisc lifted her up into the sky and back in the direction of the guild, leaving the Silver Wolf Ace with a soft smile on her face… as well as a lot to think about.

    WORDS: 1419/11,899 | @Tsubasa Kageyama
    Serilda Sinclair



    _____________________________________________________________________________________


      Current date/time is 10th August 2022, 11:08 pm