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Saturday, 13th November, 2004, 04:23 AM #1
[Rokugan] Blood and Cherry Blossoms
This is the In Character thread for Blood and Cherry Blossoms, a game set in the Rokugan campaign setting.
~ Isida Kep’Tukari: Togashi Cho
~ Scotley: Ikoma Itarabi
~ Tailspinner: Hyota
~ Pyske: Shosuro Zhiko
~ Festy_Dog: Daidoji Kaji
Those no longer with us...
~ Li Shenron: Kakita Ai
~ Ankh-Morpork Guard: Isawa Renshi
~ Valeren: Shosuro Reiko
All right everyone! Please put speech into quotation marks, and thoughts in italics. Please keep out of character comments in the OOC thread. Everybody ready? Let's go!
Last edited by Dark Nemesis; Friday, 11th March, 2005 at 06:39 PM.
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Saturday, 13th November, 2004, 04:24 AM #2
Some Uncertain Location
Slowly, Shosuro Uji regained his senses. His head ached, and his mouth felt dry, no doubt the result of whatever drug that had been mixed in his tea. Not wanting to reveal that he was awake just yet, he kept his eyes closed and relied upon his other senses to learn what he could. He was lying on his back, his arms stretched above his head. Both his wrists and his ankles were bound. It was cold, bone-chillingly so. Nearby, he could hear soft chanting, though he could not discern the words of the chant. Worst of all, the air was filled with a sickly-sweet smell, which turned his stomach. Blood, death and decay, three unmistakable odors.
At last, he dared to open his eyes. The room was dark, lit only by two braziers, which cast an eerie red light thought the room. He could see shapes moving nearby, but could not tell if people or merely a trick of the light created them. The stone walls were spattered with something dark… more than likely blood.
Uji silently cursed his carelessness as he twisted his wrists, trying to squirm free of his restraints. However, the ropes held firm.
“I see you are awake,” a soft voice murmured. Uji turned his head to see two figures emerge from the shadows. One was a tall, slender man, clad in white robes, his dark hair tied into a topknot. The other was smaller, and walked stiffly. She also wore white robes, and but her face was obscured by shadow.
“I can tell that you have been watching us for some time. The notes you kept were very… specific.” The man moved forward, and pulled a tanto from his belt. The blade glittered wickedly in the firelight. “I am told you made copies.”
Uji glared his defiance at his captors. “Damn you all to Jigoku. By now, Suki has discovered my absence and he gone to make her report to my superiors.” Soshi Suki had been working with him ever since this project began. She did not have his notes, but her word would be enough to provide testimony.
“And then what? Do you hope to be rescued?” The man’s voice took on a mocking tone. The other person moved closer, and Uji finally recognized her face. Soshi Suki’s eyes were dull and lifeless, her gait was unsteady. Her white robes were stained with blood. “How do you think I learned about you and your investigation in the first place?” The man continued, as he positioned the tanto above Uji’s abdomen.
Uji started to reply, but his words were replaced by screams as the tanto arced downward. His screams permeated the darkness, and did not stop for a very long time.
Last edited by Dark Nemesis; Saturday, 13th November, 2004 at 05:02 PM.
Saturday, 13th November, 2004, 04:26 AM #3
Seasons are changing.
In the shadow, evil stirs.
With winter comes death.
For a moment, perfect silence filled the air of Kyuden Kakita. The atmosphere was tense, as if the entire castle held its breath in anticipation. All it took was one word to break that silence.
A loud clang followed the word of the sensei, as hundreds of katanas were drawn in an iajutsu strike. Though Amaterasu, the Sun Goddess, had completed her descent past the horizon, the students of the Kakita Dueling Academy were still practicing. More than likely, they would continue to practice late into the evening. After all, one had to practice in order to perfect their art.
As Onnotangu, the Mood God, began his nightly journey, he would find Kakita Ai in the gardens of Kyuden Kakita, reading a scroll by the light of a small paper lamp. The only sounds that could be heard in the garden were the water flowing through a nearby man-made stream, and the sound of the duelists practicing at the nearby dueling academy. There were few other people in the gardens, and most were content to leave her to her studies.
“Ai-chan!” Kaitsu, her older brother called out to her as he approached her on the path, disturbing the serenity of the gardens. Offering her a wide grin, he dropped into a sitting position on the ground. “I have been looking all over for you.”
Togashi Cho sat upon the flagstones, eyes closed in meditation. Occasionally, a chill breeze brushed against his skin, bringing with it the scent of wood smoke and incense. At last, he finished his meditations, and opened his eyes to the marvelous sight that lie before him. Below him spread the valley that surrounded Shiro Togashi, heavily forested and ringed by mountains. As she set, Amaterasu cast red light over the valley, setting the trees ablaze in hues of red, orange and gold. Yet another beautiful autumn.
Behind him, Cho heard a soft scraping sound, he turned to see a servant clad in simple brown robes, kneeling nearby, waiting for acknowledgement. It was impossible to tell how long the servant had been waiting.
Itarabi’s footsteps echoed off of the walls of the empty library. He stood in one of the many rooms that housed the Ikoma histories. Shelves stood in neat rows, laden with scrolls, neatly arranged and organized by subject matter. Though these scrolls were lovingly cared for, the air still smelled musty.
For the moment, Itarabi was alone. The librarians had retired for an evening meal, trusting the guards who stood silently outside the heavy wooden doors to guard the scrolls from thieves.
“Itarabi-sama,” the silence was broken by a familiar voice. Turning, Itarabi saw Shinoba standing in the doorway. He bowed deeply, before approaching. “Sumimasen, excuse me for interrupting. Your father wishes to see you.” He held out a small scroll.
Hyota made his way along the worn path, making his way through the heavy forests of the Kitsune Mori. The path was littered with fallen leaves of varying colors. Birds sang in the trees, and occasionally the soft rustle of leaves could be heard. The sun was beginning to set; soon Hyota would have to find a place to rest.
Those thoughts had just crossed his mind when a loud rustling could be heard from behind him. He paused in time to see a reddish-brown vixen leap on to the path in front of him. She paused, cocking her head to one side as she looked at him with interest. Then, she scampered down the path in the direction that Hyota was headed.
Isawa Renshi closed his eyes and leaned his head back against the cool stone wall, listening to the soft sound of chanting that could be heard in the distance. There was never a moment when the sound of shugenja chanting could not be heard within the walls of the castle, and Renshi could not imagine what it would be like if the chanting ever stopped.
As he stood atop the parapet, he breathed in the cool evening air, and watched as Amaterasu disappeared below the horizon. It had been a magnificent sunset. Unfortunately, he would soon have to return to his studied. Taking a final breath of fresh air, he began making his way back into the castle to his rooms. However, a servant, who scurried to a halt and knelt in front of him, stopped him in the hallway. “Sensei Isawa Boten-sama wishes to see you, Isawa-sama.”
Reiko took a deep breath and allowed himself to sink deeper into the hot water of the bath. The soap that had been mixed with the water created a pleasant scent, which wafted up with the steam. Lilacs. For a long moment, he allowed himself to relax, letting the hot water work on his exhausted muscles. It had been a long trip back to Tear Drop Island, and he had quickly made his way to his favorite bathhouse.
In this late hour, these was no one else in the bath; a fact that pleased Reiko. The only sounds that could be heard were the soft splash of water, and the voice of the bathhouse owner speaking quietly in the next room.
A clatter disturbed Reiko from his reverie, and he turned to look for the source of the noise. He was still alone as far as he could tell. However, next to his clothes of a nearby wooden table, he could see a small, rolled up scroll. He was certain that it had not been there a moment ago.
Saturday, 13th November, 2004, 05:08 AM #4
Acolyte (Lvl 2)
*Turning and nodding to the servant girl, Cho rises in one smooth motion, his mind and spirit refeshed with the beauty of the natural world.*
"Speak, please," Cho says quietly.
Saturday, 13th November, 2004, 10:34 AM #5
Novice (Lvl 1)
A bit surprised, Reiko scans the room for any sign of the messenger. Correctly assuming that he will find no one, he resigns himself to the fact that whatever is written in the scroll must be of some importance for the courier to have such level of skill at being undetected. Even with that thought, he does however still take the luxury of allowing himself to squeeze the excess water from his hair before proceeding to slowly walk up from the bath to where his clothes and the scroll are located. Still dripping wet with bath water and not even taking time to cover himself, Reiko unrolls the scroll and begins to read.
Saturday, 13th November, 2004, 03:29 PM #6
Lama (Lvl 13)
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Itarabi Human Rogue/Courtier
Itarabi takes the scroll with some apprehension. "Thank you Shinoba." He takes a deep breath and carefully opens the scroll.
Saturday, 13th November, 2004, 06:42 PM #7
Novice (Lvl 1)
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Renshi was surprised by the servant, but did his best to hide it. He managed a simple nod, starting to turn away from the calm of his room to the direction of his summons. He did not speak to the servant, not out of any negative emotion, but simply because he did not feel he need to. Renshi was in one of his moods, which many of the instructers had chastised him about.
Monday, 15th November, 2004, 01:20 PM #8
Grandmaster of Flowers (Lvl 18)
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Ai rolls the scroll up and takes a sitting position directly in front of her brother. "Kaitsu-san..." she slightly nods at him and attempts a gentle smile, although she feels some apprehension about such a sudden visit on her brother's part.
"There is no survival without order, there is no evolution without chaos."
"You have to see past the RAW to understand the rules of the game."
"And rules are OVERRATED by the way!
Monday, 15th November, 2004, 10:27 PM #9
Cutpurse (Lvl 5)
Hyota : Male Shugenja 8
When Hyota first heard the sound his hand had instintively gone to his wakizashi. His thoughts went to his inherent epilepsy. Would he be able to keep it together this time. He could feel his muscles tense at the anticipation of what may come. But then the vixen jumps from the brush and he relaxes a bit as she pauses to observe him. He finds it interesting that the animal does not immediately run away. He does not move as the creature studies him. It seems like an eternity of waiting. He tries to keep perfectly still. She represents his clan perfectly. But then she runs in the same direction that the young Kitsune was heading. Strange that she would head down his path. After a momentary pause, he began to run after the creature. This must be a sign from the Chikushudo.
Last edited by Tailspinner; Monday, 15th November, 2004 at 10:28 PM.
Wednesday, 17th November, 2004, 02:42 AM #10
Upon realizing that Cho had finished his meditations, the servant leans forward to touch his forehead to the flagstones. “Tamori Kuroi-sama requests your presence for tea, after you have finished your meditations,” came the muffled reply.
Vaguely, Cho remembered hearing of this Tamori Kuroi. He was a Dragon shugenja, who had arrived at Shiro Togashi only a few days ago. He had met a few times with the Daimyo, Togashi Hoshi, as well as with a few others, including Cho’s sensei. However, the purpose of his visit remained a mystery.
Unfolding the scroll revealed a detailed picture of a flower arrangement. It was one of the methods that Shosuro Aroru used to communicate; hidden within the art was a message, written in delicate kanji. The dim light of the bathhouse made it difficult to read, but Reiko was soon able to discern the message. It read: “The hour of Togashi, at the House of the White Orchid”. Shosure Aroru wished to meet with him at midnight.
It is easy to recognize his father’s firm brushstrokes, though the message was relatively simple. He wished to have tea with his son at the hour of Bayushi, six o’clock, to discuss a matter of some importance. The tone of the message made it clear that there would be no excuses for missing the appointment.
It is clear that Shinoba is also apprehensive. He remains, watching Itarabi as he reads, wringing his hands silently. “It is good news, Ikoma-sama?”
The servant remained kneeling as Renshi made his way past him, awaiting Renshi’s reply. However, none came. After the shugenja was halfway down the hall, the servant risked a questioning look at him, before getting to his feet and continuing about his business.
It would not be difficult to find Isawa Boten-sama; at this hour of the day, he could be found in the gardens, at the reflecting pool beneath an ancient willow tree.
“It is quiet here,” Kaitsu said, looking around the gardens. “I can see why you like it here so much,” he nodded then, as if agreeing with his own words. “Do you think my new wife will like the gardens?” In the spring, Kaitsu would be getting married to his betrothed, a young lady from the Unicorn clan. His impending marriage was all he spoke of these days.
Together, Hyota and the vixen ran along the path, amid the gathering shadows of the Kitsune Mori. The path was relatively clear, making it easy to traverse, and the vixen stuck to that path. The chase lasted for a few minutes, however, Hyota lost sight of her as she crested a small hill. The vixen had apparently vanished, but further down the path, he could see the light of a small campfire.
Last edited by Dark Nemesis; Friday, 18th March, 2005 at 04:04 AM.