Visionary Tales

IC => Fantasy => Topic started by: PendragonXeno94 on October 20, 2020, 10:30:57 PM

Title: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on October 20, 2020, 10:30:57 PM
Isao looked over the map a fifteenth time. He already obtained the trade route for the Hanamura family, and he couldn't be any more excited. His prince could use it to his advantage and sabotage their supplies. Seeing how Prince Hikurai was understandably upset over them killing his favorite concubine, he was more than obliged to help him seek revenge.

His blue and gray flecked brown eyes glanced over the map before he moved the pieces to pinpoint where the supply caravan would be. Light gray hands gingerly over the paper before pulling away. Long raven hair was pulled back into a ponytail, showing off his short horns that protruded from his forehead. And small, sharp fangs were on full display, though only just the tips were in view.

"Ah, Uneo!" A richly dressed man said as he entered the war room, his angelic wings spread open. "Any luck on that tip?"

"Yes, Your Grace," Isao replied. "The Hanamuras will be sending their caravan through this valley and attempting to go through the mountains. If we can position some men along the base of the mountains when they rest for the night and sabotage their wagons, the head of the family will have no choice but to send his second son to check on them."

"Very good!" Hikurai patted Isao's back, his long hair freely cascading over his wings as his dark eyes glanced over the planned route. "Let me know if you find out anything else. Perhaps we can find a secret that the old man is hiding or uncover an assassination plot."

Isao rolled his eyes. "Wow, I never uncover assassination plots... My job is so boring."

"Oh, quit the sarcasm! You enjoy it! It's better to stop someone from killing a figurehead than to do the deed." Hikurai shook his head. "Go get some fresh air. You look like you need it."

Bowing, Isao exited the room and headed toward the bustling marketplace and pier. He had only lived in the capital of Okaona for ten years, and he somehow got appointed as spymaster after being in the prince's service for a year. Granted, it was a better life for the oni than being with a man who would try to beat him into submission and try to have him detach himself from all emotion. He had access to all the secrets he could unveil and knew the ins of outs of this city... and beyond. But with Hikurai looking for a wife, it had him wondering if he was meant to have his own hand to hold. Though, he was already approaching his mid thirties and he was nowhere near being intimate than he was years prior.

For the time being, he was content with providing for his prince and enjoying his off time.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on October 20, 2020, 11:11:20 PM
Evanna Rose Lancaster; youngest and only princess of the kingdom of Duvaria. Of course it was all over the gossip mill that she'd disappeared but considering how she'd changed her appearance she doubted they'd ever find her.  Her previously long locks were cut short and well above her shoulders, and she'd used magic to hide her ears and the bright shine of her green eyes had been dulled. She had tattoos now proudly on display on her right arm and shoulder and carried a sword along with her drawing utensils.

She was an air pirate and proud of it. Her magic had helped her along in this path she'd chosen for herself and she would never go back to the life she'd led before. She coveted her freedom much too much for that. She was happy to look the way she felt was most like herself now, instead of the constraining corsets and dresses. She felt beautiful and powerful and definitely was never going back.

Today though, saw them docking in a town to gather some supplies before they took off again. She was only a bard to them, but she still loved each and every one of them. DeLune was the captain and an interesting woman to deal with. She was a pirate, yes, but they only took from those that deserved it. They disliked authority but didn't break the laws in towns or hurt innocent people.

Grinning to herself, Evanna took a deep breath of fresh air as she moved along the docks to restock her supplies. Adjusting her pack, she gave a short whistle of sound and felt a soft weight on her shoulder as her familiar and best friend Gif landed. Gif was a fae bird and often spoke telepathically to her and no one else. She'd found him as a chick and saved him from life in a cage. She loved him and their bond was very close.

She heard DeLune call out to her about when they'd be leaving and waved her captain away; knowing she wouldn't be left behind. "See you later, Captain, your bard is going to restock her supplies. Don't worry, I won't get lost or forget to come home." The woman scowled at her then waved her off, used to this by now. Evanna - Eva to her friends - grinned over her shoulder then headed into the nearby marketplace to do her shopping. Oh but she did love this life she led.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on October 21, 2020, 08:39:16 AM
Isao was still scanning the crowd as he weaved his way through. He paid little mind to the ship that had docked. They were most likely resupplying and then heading back out, like the ships before them. He could make out the model of ship they used, and even though he could decipher that this was a pirate ship, he let them be. So long as they didn't cause trouble, that was good enough for him. But before he turned a corner, he saw a young woman making her way through the market.

He wasn't sure what happened. Something instantly and strongly drew him to her as if he were a moth and she was the flame. It was like he had known her before and yet he knew he had never seen her before. Perhaps he knew her in another life. Still, he had to speak to her. If only just once.

He reached to gently touch her shoulder. "I hate to bother you, miss," he said, "but I couldn't help but notice your little friend." That certainly didn't catch his attention, but he had to play it off somehow. "Is this a fae bird by any chance? We don't have many of those around here."

He knew. He knew he probably sounded like a total idiot to her with the way he kept going on. But anything to catch her gaze and have her even acknowledge his existence was good enough for him.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on October 21, 2020, 07:41:22 PM
The sudden and unexpected touch cause a flash of alarm to go through Evanna and she jolted back and away, throwing out her opposite arm where Gif shifted to so he wouldn't fall and pulling out a dagger to defend herself with as her familiar made a hissing sound and her own green eyes flashed with defiance. Upon putting space between them she realized he wasn't someone from her kingdom - wrong sort of magic - and slowly dropped her defensive stance though her eyes betrayed her caution and suspicion of this person. "It's very rude to touch someone when you don't have permission and don't know them, Sir." Her tones were sharp but melodic, a hint at her ancestry she couldn't shake. Still, she wasn't going to be backed down by this stranger.

She looked to Gif as he settled back on her shoulder and pressed close to her cheek, his own distrust seeping into her mind through their bond. This man could be all sorts of things from a vagabond to an exotics trader looking to get Gif from her by any means necessary. Still, they had an agreement with this kingdom not to attack innocent people in exchange for safe passage and she wasn't about to ruin that for her captain and crewmates. Taking a deep breath, she tried again with the given topic.

"He is, yes. Gif is my familiar." At least that much wasn't dangerous to say as owls like Gif were known to choose who they would regardless of race so her looking human didn't mean he wouldn't have chosen her. Still, this entire situation had her uneasy. Mentally bracing herself, she knew she'd have to end this conversation fast for her own safety and Gif's. "I don't imagine you see any around here, they're very reclusive and only come into the mainland area to choose a life-partner amongst the populace. He just chose me is all."

Her mind was racing now, how did she make him go away? She could just excuse herself and leave it there, that would work. Still, some part of her felt there was a reason for this meeting but she didn't trust the feeling as a good thing so she needed to get out. this man wasn't safe for her to be around. So she rose her eyes up to his and let the striking green touch his own darker eyes in a locked stare for a long moment; letting herself adjust to the strange shock the action caused her before dropping her head and stepping back again. Her tone was concise and to the point when she excused herself.

"Now then, if that's all you wanted Sir, I have errands to run before my crew sets sail again. If you'll excuse us and good day to you." Something deep inside her, some instinctual magic, told her she'd met this man before some where. When she pressed the not-quite-a-memory all she got in return is blood and pain and terror and betrayal. So then, it hadn't been a good thing when they'd met so it's best that she forgot. Or else...maybe she was picking up on a memory of his but that was none of her business.

Moving passed him she returned the touch he'd given her with a gentle hand brushing down his arm as she passed him by. There, now they were even since he hadn't asked permission to touch her she didn't have to ask to touch him this time. It made her point, and let her make herself scarce in the busy streets of the marketplace. What a strange man. She felt Gif nudge her head and felt his inquiry through her mind. She shrugged. "I dunno who he was Gif, but you know how I feel about people touching me without permission. He deserved the same rudeness in return." Gif hooted at her, the sense of smug amusement coming from him and making her snort with laughter. Silly bird.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on October 21, 2020, 08:04:37 PM
Seeing her turn and pull a dagger out, he reached for his katana before the tension left her. "I apologize..." he said as he lowered his hand. "I didn't mean to be intrusive." He knew she didn't exactly trust him, but it was best to try and show that he meant no harm. As she told him that her bird chose her as his life partner, he nodded. Though before he could say anything else, she walked past him and brushed her hand down his arm. He made a note of where she went and he decided that, for the time being, he would let her be before he tried to approach her again.

As he thought of where he had seen her before, all he could think of was a lifeless body and he was clutching it. Pushing the dark thought away, he lingered along the edge of the marketplace before he went to the dock where he sat and stretched.

Well, today proved to be quite interesting. First, he found the trade route for Hikurai, and now he ran into what felt like a ghost. But he was still drawn to her, and he would at least get her name before she departed. Scanning the horizon every now and then, he pondered over what he was feeling, and why he felt such a strong connection to her.

But once she appeared again, he decided to let his presence be known instead of reaching out for her. "Miss..." He give her a small bow. "I apologize for bothering you again, but I couldn't help but notice you when I was leaving the castle grounds earlier. I know my initial approach was less than welcome, but I wanted to have a chance to speak with you." He extended a hand, knowing that it was a custom for foreigners to shake hands. "My name is Isao Uneo. I am under the service of Prince Hikurai as a trusted advisor." Well, technically he was one for Hikurai, though his work was more secretive. He already knew this wouldn't be the last time he saw her, otherwise he would have let her be to begin with.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on October 21, 2020, 09:33:56 PM
It took a few hours before Evanna felt more like herself again and tension eased from her gate to be replaced by an effortless sort of grace that marked her as other than she appeared. It was when she was heading back towards the ship that trouble came again. Gif gave a sharp sounded warning through her mind and she stopped in her tracks as the man from before again called out to her. She scowled, green eyes sharp and not at all willing to deal with an idiot. She stared at his hand as he offered it and curled her own behind herself, glowering at him. Her tone was sharp with warning when finally she spoke, so clearly she didn't think this was a coincidence. "I don't shake hands, it's too easy to have your lifeforce stolen that way. Now, how about you tell me what you want from me, Uneo."

She knew he'd been waiting for her; could feel it in the press of him against her magic. She wanted nothing to do with him. Even worse, he was in service to the crown which she also didn't like. Those that served a crown tended to be sympathetic to it, after all, and he would be the sort to try and make her go back to her home kingdom. She valued her freedom too much for that. So she'd use his name that he'd foolishly given to her but she'd be damned if she gave him her's...or well her actual name. "I doubt we'll see each other again, but if it'll make you go away you can call me Rose. Under service to Captain Amora DeLune of the Confederation of the Sky."

That marked her as an Air Pirate but it wasn't illegal so long as they were careful so best to give him that information since they travelled enough it wouldn't let him find her easily. For now she held his gaze steadily; her expression closed off as it ever was. If he thought throwing his title around would impress her he had the wrong girl. Maybe that would make him go away. "I'm sure there are others out there more than willing to entertain you, Sir, but I'm not one of them. So unless you have actual business with me I'll be on my way back to my ship." They'd leave in the morning and this man would be a bad memory. Gif hooted at her, his mind strong and curious against her's even as he gave her quiet inquiry in the form of the vague images she'd gotten before.

He wanted to know what those were about; she did too honestly but now was not the time so she merely turned her nose into the familiar feathered form and breathed in his familiar scent slowly to steady herself. She was an Air Pirate, after all, she didn't make it a point to entertain royals or their lackeys. So what exactly did this man want from her? She'd rather go back to the ship but something told her he'd follow her so she stayed put until she could make him go away.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on October 21, 2020, 10:44:29 PM
Isao pulled his hand back as she said she didn't shake hands. When she gave him a name, he chuckled to himself. "I doubt that's your real name." Something told her that it wouldn't be the last time they saw each other. "And you realize that I can easily use your captain's name and her ship against you. Technically speaking, I can easily divulge some secrets and give them to the prince. Though I doubt you'd want that."

He was certainly an intuitive one. "I suppose you're like me and value your freedom after escaping an undesirable fate." Though it seemed she had a feisty spirit, he couldn't help but wonder what was going through her mind.

He sighed, his gaze softening a little more. "Look, I know you don't want to be bothered, but I feel like I've seen you somewhere before. I know we've never met and I sound crazy for saying this, but it feels as though I knew you in a previous life. I don't know, but..." Now he was rambling. He took a few deep breaths as he knew he never rambled on like this. With one more deep breath, he continued. "I just... wanted to speak to you. I'm not trying to impress you or anything, I just wanted to have a moment with you. I can promise you if anything comes up involving you or your crew, I won't say a word. And I usually don't slack off as a spymaster."

Well, since she outed herself as an Air Pirate, there was no use in hiding what he really did. They needed to keep things even, after all.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on October 21, 2020, 11:37:24 PM
Evanna only leveled her cool gaze towards the stranger, not caring what he thought one way or another. She snorted darkly at his comment about finding her with her captain's name. "Being an Air Pirate isn't illegal so don't speak as if you're going to do something that will cause me trouble because unless we break the treaty with this kingdom we are well and safe. So tell your precious prince whatever you want, he knows we're here and why, we have nothing to hide." She tilted her head, clearly prideful, but unwilling to back down.  She wasn't afraid of this man that thought he could pull one over on her because he was some prince's pet spymaster; if anything he gave away too much information.

She wasn't unperceptive though and was listening to him. She could feel Gif's emotions about putting this man in his place and grinned to herself at the commentary from her familiar. "I think you're grasping at straws trying to throw your weight around for no apparent reason. I don't care who or what you are, Sir, and I don't need your promises about saying anything about my crew. You clearly don't know what an Air Pirate is if your first thought is that we aren't safe to be her. We are our own nation, we aren't illegal anymore. I'm proud of what I am and have no reason to hide it." He made himself look stupid for not knowing these things but she wasn't going to tell him so.

The rest of his commentary was nonsense and she rolled her eyes again wondering if he'd hit his head or something. Gently she ran a hand over Gif to steady herself before just being blunt. "Okay, several things, the name Rose does belong to me just not my first name. The rest you haven't earned yet so that's all you'll get from me name wise. Do you realize how much of a bad line 'I feel like we've met before in a previous life.' sounds like? Even if that's true the only thing I'll agree to is that if we met before it wasn't under good circumstances at all. So just stop bothering. My fate or choices that led to it are none of your business. As far as you're concerned I'm a random woman you met on the streets of the market. And you aren't making a good impression let me tell you what."

He said he wasn't trying to impress her but promising not to use his title as spymaster against her crew was, in fact, him trying to impress. She ran a free hand through her hair before keeping her no-nonsense commentary going; even if she did sort of thing his random bout of randomly was sort of cute. "I don't appreciate you threatening me, by the way, and that's what your comment about divulging secrets was it was a threat. We don't belong to this kingdom, so we don't fall under the rule of your precious prince. So if you want something from me, be honest and tell me what. I don't have time to mince words with you; Spymaster." Her free spirit would always demand she keep moving so she really didn't have time for this nonsense.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on October 22, 2020, 08:49:13 AM
He rubbed his eyes with one hand. He knew he sounded like an idiot. He never sounded like an idiot. Was he this out of touch speaking with a woman? Letting her go on, he simply shook his head. "I know how bad what I said sounds," he said. "You don't need to remind me." Finally, he couldn't take her going on like this anymore.

"Stop," he said plainly. "Let me explain." He brought his gaze up to meet hers and took a deep breath. "I'm sorry. I've been so involved with my work I haven't had time to speak to anyone outside of it, let alone a woman. I just... saw you and wanted to talk to you. And I made myself look completely foolish. You have every reason to be angry with me." He paused, focusing on her features for a moment before he spoke again. "May I say you have the most vibrant looking eyes I've ever seen?"

There. His charm was coming back, if only just. A smile crossed his lips, showing off his fangs more, and his lower canines barely curled upward to touch his upper lip. "And you must be a good person if you have your little friend with you. And..." He looked at her shoulder. "Whoever did that knew what they were doing." Well, even if he started off on the wrong foot, he wanted to at least regain a little traction.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on October 22, 2020, 09:55:10 PM
Evanna raised her eyebrow at the clearly flustered male before her. She blinked quietly at his attempt at an explanation then raised her other eyebrow at him in clear disbelief as he then shifted from trying to explain himself to trying to compliment her eyes. Really now, how could anyone be so socially inept as to believe anything coming out of his mouth was appropriate? It grated on her, but she held it in as she knew she'd never get him to go away if she didn't deal with this carefully.

She tilted her head to the side as he decided to try his hand at being charming. She snorted in amusement as he picked her familiar as a topic then the large tattoo covering her arm and shoulder. She turned her head to look at Gif who sent her his quiet annoyance at this stranger's continued presence. She ran a gentle hand over her familiar to soothe him before considering the man again. He was clearly an idiot, and by the looks of him an Oni. She fought the urge to crinkle her nose up at him and only just managed it.

She considered her tattoo and shrugged. "That was a wright of passage for joining the Air Pirates. They wouldn't let anyone mark others that couldn't do so correctly." She eyed him again and wondered what his angle was so she decided to just go ahead and ask. "Look, I don't know what you think you're doing in talking to me other than trying to exercise your clearly nonexistent charms, so whatever it is lets just be done with it so you can stop making an idiot of yourself." She ran a hand through her hair, throughout put upon.

He felt he knew her from somewhere, this led him to wanting to be close to her or talk to her. Yet he seemed to be dragging this on like it was important; it made no sense. "Try being clear about what it is you want. If it's conversation, fine, but my ship leaves in a few hours. If that's what it takes to make you stop coming after me then fine, I'll give you a bit of my time before we part ways. If it's your intention to work on your flirting, sorry but you've failed spectacularly already and I'm not of the mind to teach you to be any better at it."

She looked him over and considered all options, raising an eyebrow at him again. "If it's your intention to work out some frustrations I'm sure there's a brothel better suited to that than I am, but if you're just determined I can humor you since you  aren't bad looking I suppose. Just...I hate people that say one thing and mean another. Speak plainly to me,  you'll get further." And that was all she was helping him.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on October 22, 2020, 10:06:11 PM
"I see." He sighed to himself, knowing he was failing spectacularly at that moment. When she told him to just speak plainly, he sighed. "Alright..." She was probably going to laugh at him, but she did say to speak plainly. "I think you're very beautiful and would like to get to know better. But if you have to leave in few hours, I understand. I just hope that you'll at least let me have some sort of chance."

He took another deep breath. "Sorry, I'm not used to talking about anything outside of work. But I assure you that I'm not looking to jump into bed with you or steal you away from something you clearly love. I just... wanted to talk to you." Really, could she fault him for that? And he wasn't about to say that he knew that he was going to marry her someday. He didn't need things to be any more awkward than what they were.

It was bad enough he made things worse than what they needed to be.

Still... She had a strong spirit, and he liked that about her. Now it remained to be seen if she would actually leave or stick around. He didn't need another potential relationship to blow up in his face.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on October 22, 2020, 10:50:57 PM
Evanna blinked then snorted with amusement as the first honest thing came from the mouth of her companion. Alright, so he was attracted to her and wanted to spend a bit of time with her until she left. She could do that. Nuzzling against Gif for a moment she rose her arm into the air for a moment before giving him the impression of letting the captain know what she was doing and launching him into the air. She also knew that if this situation went pear shaped it was better he wasn't with her.

Moving back to her companion, she decided it was amusing to fluster him and reached out to grab one of his hands with both of her's pulling him along the path back towards the marketplace. "C'mon then, if time is what you want I can give you some of that. Let me show you this city the way we Air Pirates see it. I promise you won't regret it." It was a few hours, then she'd be done with him. Still, the vibrant light in her eyes said she was excited to let him see her world that way she did it. Gif was safe, and she could escape if she needed to, so this would be fine. In the meantime she'd have fun flustering this idiotic man.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on October 23, 2020, 10:34:45 AM
Seeing her decide to go along with it, Isao allowed her to send her familiar back to the ship before feeling her grab his hand. "A-Alright." He wasn't too sure what she meant, though he at least had some way to defend himself should the need arise. Though something told him that it wouldn't be necessary. She seemed so full of life and so sure about herself. If only he were half as bold...

As he let her pull him along, everything felt like a blur as they weaced their way through to wherever it was that she wanted to take him. He didn't dare ask her where she had in mind. He was only just able to get her to spend time qith uim, and he wasn't about to screw things up again.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on October 23, 2020, 04:31:34 PM
Evanna was secretly amused with just how flustered this strange man was by her being a little bit bold. It wasn't even over the top as far as she was concerned but it was funny still and she couldn't help but enjoy herself with teasing him. She grinned to him and pulled him along through a hidden passageway that she had to open by pressing a hand against an old bit of stone and putting a little burst of magic into it so that the passage opened up to reveal what was beyond. Inside was another marketplace but this one held people from all walk of life and cultures. This was the Pathway Marketplace, it connected several of the kingdoms and allowed for quick passage between to those that knew the secret.

He wouldn't know about the secret passages or what magic made it work, and she wasn't going to tell him. Instead she was showing him a place that was previous to her because it had given her the freedom she'd always longed for. It was also at this marketplace that she'd first heard Gif calling to her. Her entire being lit up as she kept one hand on her temporary companion so she wouldn't lose him as she interacted warmly with the venders and her fellow shoppers. She laughed at things she was told, shared gossip and general harmless secrets, and caught up on the news from the larger Confederate of the Sky Nation and her fellow Air Pirates. She was clearly in her element and enjoying herself, but she kept a firm hand on his and led him along; introducing him here and there by his last name as she herself called him that way.

When she didn't feel threatened, it was clear she was a warm and loving person that enjoyed touching others to show her affection and connection to her. She snuggled against the small children her friends had had in her absence and snuggled on more than one familiar that had chosen someone she knew. All the while she told him stories about her life and just did what she'd said she would and gave him some of her time. It was only a few hours, of course, but that was what he wanted and then she could get on with her life. For now she just gave him what she was willing to and enjoyed teasing him quite mercilessly as she was pretty much bulletproof here in her natural element.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on October 23, 2020, 04:44:02 PM
As he was taken to a hidden passageway, he let her open the door and pulled him along into another marketplace. He was clearly awestruck as she pulled him along and interacted with everyone. Having only heard whispers of this place, he could hardly believe that it existed. And should anyone of power find this place, he suddenly feared that they would use it to their advantage. It was best to not ever utter of its existence for the sake of everyone here.

While she didn't really speak to him, he could tell that she was a warm and kind soul who loved being with people. And she had yet to let go of his hand. But he inclined his head in greeting to whoever she introduced him to. She was clearly in her element here, and this place meant something to her. He had a note to try and not to flirt with her again until he felt confident in doing so. For now, he would speak plainly as she had suggested.

"There are any special spots here?" he asked, before quickly clarifying, "For the view." Of course, if he were to gain his trust, he had something in mind for her to show that his intentions were good.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on October 23, 2020, 10:39:21 PM
She could feel the awestruck feeling coming from the man she pulled along with her and smiled to herself because this was exactly how she'd reacted the first time she'd stumbled upon this place as well. She tilted her gaze back to him after a while when he finally spoke up again it was to ask about a special place here and she only grinned. "Oh there are a few places, here I'll show you." She excused herself quietly from the friendly crowd and gently pulled him with her down another alleyway before pressing her hand against the stone again and opening up another path.

From the moment they stepped through it was clearly different from where they been. For one it was nighttime and they were up on a cliff instead of the daytime busy marketplace. Once the door closed behind them they were surrounded by thousands of stars and a warm breeze with the scent of the ocean carried on it. She pulled him further and settled them down into long grass that was an off shade of dark lilac purple and smelled like apples. She released his hand then once she got him to sit down next to her and urged him to be still.

It wasn't long before little sparkling lights started floating up from the ground and down from the sky around them. They lit the colors in Evanna's eyes and seemed to be the stars coming down to greet them. She spoke quietly to him, though she was clearly distracted by the view around her. "This is Starlight Peak, it's one of the most magical places in the land. Only certain people can even find it as it takes a certain kind of magic. It's always night-time here and the stars shine brightly, singing to those souls that know how to listen." She never took her gaze off the sky even as she ran a gentle hand down his arm without really realizing it. There was something familiar in the movement though if she'd realized she was doing it she'd have stopped herself.

The world seemed to hum around them and the intimacy of the place made it easy to believe they were the only two people in the world. Eventually she dropped her hands into the grass again before dropping onto her back to look up through the grass into the starlit sky above. She loved this place so much, and if nothing else came from this annoying man, at least she'd gotten to visit here again.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on October 23, 2020, 10:59:30 PM
As he was pulled along once again, Isao quietly followed until they reached a cliff and there was nothing but a sea of stars around them and the smell of the sea and apples. He stayed perfectly still as sparkling lights surrounded them. His eyes remained on the sky as he felt her hand run down his arm.

Perhaps she wasn't as callous as before?

At any rate, he slowly moved to lie on his back and he simply took it all in. This place was certainly beautiful and he couldn't feel any more content. "This place makes you forget about the outside world," he said softly. "I wouldn't mind coming back here to meditate."

With everything that happened within the last few hours, he couldn't help but feel as though he and this woman were fated to meet one another.

"I have something for you." Reaching into his pocket, he pulled out what looked like a small compass with the north star covering most of its face, repurposed as a necklace. There were only a few of them, and he had one. "Should you ever need aid, whisper 'Watashi no tasuke ni kite, gado' and help will come." Of course, it would ruin the surprise if he told her what would happen if she did that.

*the wearer of the necklace is basically saying "come to my aid, guardian"*
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on October 24, 2020, 11:02:51 PM
Evanna realized her mistake in being so kind to the man as his commentary began again. Oh for the love of freedom what was he suddenly in love with her or something? This was ridiculous. Maybe it was an Oni thing, who knew. Still, it was only for tonight so she could deal with it. "Well...you need to know the path in order to get here as well as a certain type of magic to open the door. It's not somewhere everyone can get to. It's a place meant to soothe a worried heart and ease the burdens of life. Gift showed me the way." Speaking about her familiar made a gentle smile flit across her face for a moment before she shook her head and looked back up to the sky.

She didn't want to encourage him but something told her he was stubborn and she'd have to leave before he'd take the hint and leave her alone. This thought was proven correct when he suddenly offered her a compass looking necklace. She rose an eyebrow at him, feeling the magic in the item, before rolling her eyes. "I don't need anything from you for giving you a bit of time, you know. Kindness doesn't come with a price, after all." And clearly he thought she'd be nicer to him if he gave her gifts, it was frustrating. Well whatever. She started at him at his offered gift and understood the offer of protection and assistance for what it was. She didn't want to lead him on as she wasn't that sort of woman so she shook her head. "That is a gift best given to someone precious and that isn't me."

She shook her head and rose gracefully back to her feet, the warm breeze lifting her short hair slightly as she shut her eyes and lifted her face towards the sky and stars. This was the core of her magic and she loved to just bask in it sometimes.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on October 24, 2020, 11:22:39 PM
He smiled softly. While he knew that he would likely not be able to return unless she helped him come back, he was glad to at least experience this place. Even if it was just once.

Seeing her roll her eyes at the gift and hearing her say that it was only for someone precious did sting a little. He let out a soft huff, knowing he had his work cut out for him. "It's not that kind of gift," he said. "You're the first person in years that I actually consider a friend. That's why I want to give this to you." Well, while he knew she was someone special, he didn't want to take her to bed right away or try to sweep her off her feet.

Dropping his gaze, he took a deep breath. Really, he knew she thought little of him, but her reaction was completely unnecessar. "Look. I know we started on the wrong foot. I know what I said made me sound like an idiot. But even if we only stay friends, that's more than enough for me." He brought his gaze back up. "Did I speak plainly enough for you?" He kept the necklace in his hand, obviously hesitant about putting it away.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on December 17, 2020, 08:06:40 PM
Evanna blinked once, then again, trying not to be confused by this very wishy washy man. Any treasure that nice was worth giving to someone important so yes it was that sort of gift. Also, friendships weren't made just on a feeling, they took time and effort and she knew that very well. He said he felt like she was a friend, that was ridiculous since they'd just met but at the same time at least he was being upfront about the things he wanted. She looked him over again, then sighed before pushing her hair back away from her face. "I think friendship takes time and mutual trust and understanding, and I think you are very bad at social interactions. Also, that necklace is a small treasure to be very careful who you offer it to lest someone misguide you so they can steal it. "

She watched him drop his gaze at her refusal of his gift as he tried speaking plainly; which she appreciated. When he finally looked back up at her she knew he really wanted her to have his treasure and didn't want to leave without her having it. Still, she was no thief to take something she didn't deserve. She mentally cursed herself for her morals and shook her head again before stretching out and turning back to face the man by her side. "Look, I appreciate you trying to speak plainly since it seems hard for you. But you move too fast too soon for the things you are asking of me. We are strangers, you seem to forget that." She placed a hand on the one of his that held the necklace, closing his fingers back around the gift to keep it safe and gave him a small half smile. Mentally cursing her kind nature once more, she drew a quick rune on the back of Isao's hand and watched it glow briefly with her magic before disappearing. Nodding to herself, she looked back  up at him.

"How about this as a compromise. That rune will allow any letter you write to me to find me no matter where I am in the entire world. Write to me, get to know me, let me get to know you. Then if you still feel we should be friends I'll let you send me the necklace. Sound fair?" It allowed him to keep contact with her in a way which was more than he'd have gotten from her before. She hoped he appreciated it in the very least as she didn't use her magic for many people these days.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on December 17, 2020, 08:46:40 PM
Isao fell silent, feeling so defeated at that moment. Was he really that out of touch in a social setting? Before he could say anything else, she took his hand and drew a quick rune on the back of it, explaining that they could write to each other while they were apart as a way of being able to get to know each other.

He nodded. "That's fair." Well, it was the best thing he could have for now. And he knew that if anyone caught wind that he was trying to talk to a woman, they would be all over it and never let him live it down... or leave themselves out of wanting to help him in his endeavors. He put the necklace back in his pocket and smiled at her. "I... I hope that you don't always find me awkward." He couldn't believe that he was so caught up in his work that he forgot how to charm a woman! Still, he had time to try and get that back.

At least she was willing to give him a chance and put up with him, even if they started off on the wrong foot.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 11, 2021, 11:46:03 PM
She almost felt bad for the guy at the defeated expression on his face, but it wasn't enough for her to change her mind about what she thought of him. She was an Air Pirate, it was in her nature to be brutally honest and to value her own freedom over all else. If this man thought he could chain her with pretty words and offers of friendship when he was very much a stranger then he had another thing coming. Still, she wasn't unkind.

After straightening herself up and dusting herself off again, Evanna let herself stretch before she went another round with this awkward and wishy-washy man. "Alright then, that's settled and your time is almost up. Remember, address any letters you write to 'Rose' and when I feel like you've earned it then I'll give you the proper name to call me. Until then, let me lead us out of here so you don't get lost." She grabbed his arm to lead him, and also to comfort him in her quite way since he seemed so upset.

She let them walk back to the hidden entrance in silence and didn't speak until they were back on their way to the docks. "Look, it's fine to be awkward, but maybe think a little harder about what you're saying before you say it when speaking to a woman; especially an Air Pirate. We prefer blunt honesty to beating  around the bush and sometimes we're stubborn and hard to trust, but once you earn that loyalty there's nothing we won't do for you. Your title isn't who you are, it's what you are so Isao,"

She looked up at him, eyes swimming with so many thoughts and mysteries that had yet to be unraveled. They were warm though and a strange spark was hidden behind the green depths. She was special in more ways than one, that was for certain. "When you write to me, let me know you. I don't want to know the spy, I want to know the man. Think you can do that for me?" She gave him a half smile and reached up to brush his hair from his face before pressing a gentle kiss to his cheek. "There, that's for at least trying to be better. Now walk me back to the dock so I can retrieve my familiar."
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 12, 2021, 10:30:35 AM
Isao stared up at the starry canvas for a moment before he heard her speak again. "I will remember that," he said gently. Well, he hoped he could at least sound better when he wrote to her. Before long, she pulled him up and led him back to the docks, all the while letting the silence settle between them. He certainly never met a woman like her before, and he never met a woman who was able to hold her own.

When their eyes met once more, he saw that hers held a certain warmth to them... almost as if she let her guard down, if only just. He would have to try and capture the charm he once had before even attempting to draft a letter for her. He kept himself from commenting about her eyes as much as it hurt him, though he was able to conceal that.

When told that she wanted to know the man and not the spy, he nodded. That shouldn't be so hard. Before he could speak, he felt her fingers brush his hair away and her lips press to his cheek. He knew then that she would see how much his cheeks would darken. He hoped that none of his colleagues was witnesing this... he would never hear the end of it.

"Yes... I'll, uh. I'll walk you back." He began to head to the docks as he felt a little giddy over the kiss he received. "I hope that you have safe travels," he added.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 13, 2021, 12:59:22 PM
The blush her kiss to the cheek got her had Evanna grinning brightly in the first real and brilliant smile she'd given him that day. This one reached her eyes and lit them with warmth and amusement. Before she shook her head and kept walking next to him. "You're sort of adorable when you're embarrassed, just so you know." She was feeling cheeky and the amusement was better than the wariness from earlier as it let her relax a bit more.

She nodded to his comment about her travels. "Thanks for that, looks like we'll have good winds and if we get out on time we might avoid the storm that's coming which is always a plus." That and she wouldn't have to use her magic to make certain the ship stayed in the air where it belonged if they hit rough skies. It had happened before and was one of the reasons the captain had asked her to join them.

As she neared the ship her expression gentled and warmed as she sensed the mind of her familiar brush up against her own as Gif dropped out of the sky to land on her outstretched arm. He moved up to her shoulder crooning gently and began to nuzzle against her cheek; something that had her nuzzling against him in return and shutting her eyes as the warmth of his affection for her washed over her. She did love her familiar very much and that was clear.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 13, 2021, 02:20:25 PM
Isao blushed even more when he saw Rose grin and heard that he was adorable when he was embarrassed. Well, at least she seemed to lighten up a little more. And the smile suited her, though he preferred to keep that to himself for the time being. As they neared the ship, he looked on as her familiar nuzzled against her cheek.

Knowing that she would soon leave, he looked to her one more time. "May the winds be in your favor." Oh, it sounded a lot better in his head. "Safe travels, Rose." After a few moments, he turned to return to the palace, looking over his shoulder every now and then to catch a glimpse of her until she was out of his line of sight.

He entered through the gates and made his way to the large zen garden where his tower stood. He thought over what he would say in his letter over and over as he went to sit under the cherry blossom tree. He pondered over what had transpired that afternoon and touch his cheek a few times as if her kiss left an imprint on it.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 13, 2021, 04:23:49 PM
Evanna snorted in laughter at the darkening blush on her companion's face and snorted in amusement at his attempt to wish her well. "Hey, just so you know, when we part ways with another Air Pirate, we say 'Fair winds find you.' So you don't worry over what to say each time." He was such a strange man and his awkwardness was something both she and - now that they were reunited and he could see what had happened from her memories Gif - found highly amusing.

She waved at him as she turned and moved up and boarded her ship, greeting the crew as she went and grinning brightly at some of the comments which she brushed off and explained away with good humor. Honestly she didn't expect him to write to her since all he'd wanted was some of her time, but some small part of her sort of wanted him to write to her if only to amuse herself with his awkwardness.

It wasn't long after that the ship pushed off from port and once the warm air hit her face again as they ascended into the sky Evanna hummed in contentment because once again, she was home.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 13, 2021, 05:15:32 PM
"Fair winds find you. I'll remember that for next time."

He spent the rest of the evening contemplating over what had transpired. She probably didn't want him to write to her, though he would likely humor her by sending her just one and see where things went.

Sitting at his desk, he tapped his finger on the paper, his head reeling. How long had it been since he sent a personal letter? How long had it been since he sent a letter to a woman he was interested in? He thought it over carefully before he finally set the pen to the paper.

Rose,

I hope this letter finds you well. I promise I won't sound as awkward as I did when we first met.

I have a view of a large garden from my window. I like to go there and just sit and meditate. It helps my clear my head whenever I need an escape from work. I also sometimes sit on the roof and look up at the sky. I find it calming. I especially enjoy it when a storm comes around and I can see the lightning in the distance. It is something I have enjoyed since my boyhood.

I have lived in the palace for roughly eight years. I was a foot soldier for a small warlord and a poor farm boy before then. Leaving my parents wasn't my choice. The last time I saw them was before we marched across the country.

I would have bled out on the battlefield if not for one of Hikurai's spies.

But I realize you wouldn't be interested in knowing how I became a prince's spymaster. You said you wanted to know the man, after all.

But a spymaster leads a more interesting life than a farm boy, no?

Also, you have a beautiful smile. You should wear it more often.

Fair winds find you,
Isao


With that, he sent the letter out, hoping to get one in return.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 14, 2021, 03:26:59 PM
Given how far out they were it took a few days for the letter to find her even with her magic all over it because of the rune she'd embedded into Isao's skin. Still she did get it and read it over with an amused roll of her eyes over how awkward this man really was. Honestly she'd much prefer the words of a farm boy to a spy because at least then he'd be honest about himself, but that was another matter altogether.

She admitted to herself she was surprised he'd written to her at all considering how badly their first meeting had gone. Still he had written to her indeed and she was kind enough to decide to write him back. It seemed the man wanted her time still and so long as it was only through writing letters she didn't mind giving him that. It did no harm and gave her something to do.

So as she sat high up in the crows nest at the highest point of the ship she could get - other than the top of the sails but the captain made her swear not to go up there after the first time - she decided to take her rest up there as she usually did and return a letter to the strange male she had met. It took her awhile to decide what to say to him, and eventually Gif joined her and she nuzzled against his warm feathered body; taking comfort in the familiar press of his mind as she always did. At last she began to write.

To the adorably awkward spymaster,

It does find me well now that it's found me, and I'm certain you shall remain in my minds eye as awkward as the day we met. I could never understand someone that prefers to stay in one place such as you do, is it hard being tied to that room even with it's view? Do you ever feel trapped in place? I do not ask to be cruel but merely as a curiousity given that we Air Pirates are nomadic I could never imagine belonging to one place as you do.

I can relate to watching the sky, but my magic is part of that sky so it only makes sense. I've stood at the eye of those storms you watch from a distance and basked in the chaos of them. Being so close to the danger and raw power of it is one of my life's greatest joys. I have thrown my power into that sky and watched the storm rage around me out in the open sky, and I never felt more alive than when I felt that power accept my presence there as part of it.

Being allowed to share in the wild joy of the sky, it's one of the reasons I became an Air Pirate. I've been one for three years now ever sense I threw my magic into the sky the first time and saved the ship from a massive hurricane field. Granted I passed out after that since I was still learning my own magic, but it granted me the freedom of the sky and friends I'll cherish forever so I can never regret such a thing.

Honestly, fighting for something you believe in is a noble thing to me, but I'd rather hear the honest words of a farm boy than the guarded lies of a spymaster. I do hope one day you get to return to see  your parents, that can be a difficult thing if they loved you at all. Being a spymaster must be lonely, but that's your choice I don't tend to judge the choices of others. As to the smile, I do so often and readily to those that deserve it. You might be adorable and fun to embarrass, but you also threatened me and mine and that isn't something I can easily forgive. I give you a chance in writing to you, don't forget that.

I will admit to a curiousity though, if you'll indulge me. What is an oni doing so far from where they usually roam? Because your life was saved? The horns threw me a bit at first, I'll admit, but I've met your lot before so it wasn't too much. Is being a spymaster so important to keep you so far from home? Or did you make that place your home? As I don't just, if that kingdom feels more like home to you, then I wish you well. Be that as it may I hear the others calling for me; the life of a bard is never boring. Until next time.

Fair winds find you,
Rose


She brushed a rune across the letter for protection and sent it off. This man had a lot to learn if he ever expected to become a friend to her. As it stood he was just as likely to find out who she was and turn her back over to her kingdom for the reward as he was to show her loyalty of any sort. Still, the fact he was an oni was something she found curious and reluctantly intriguing. She grinned to herself, betting he'd blush if she told him that. It was too easy. Still, now she had work to do and she pushed the letter and the male attached to it far from her mind.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 15, 2021, 09:15:28 PM
It was few days before a courier brought a letter to him while he was charting a map based on a few tips he came across. He thanked him and went off to the side to read it. He shook his head over her reply; of course she still found him awkward. Although... he could try to be better.

After rereading the letter a few times, he quickly penned out a letter.

Rose,

I apologize for threatening you and yours. That was never my intention, and that was out of line for me.

It's not so much that I stayed because my life was saved. It's more out of feeling that I belong somewhere. I went from place to place from age fifteen up until eight years ago. I grew tired of not staying in one place, but I am happy to hear that you find some solace and freedom of not being tied to one place. If I was honest, I do feel trapped from time to time. I do eventually want to go to other places again so long as I have somewhere to come back to. But yes, it does get lonely. I haven't even tried to court a woman let alone be intimate with one for almost ten years.

This will sound strange, but I was not born as an oni. I can't explain how I transformed. I was tortured for disobeying orders and after I awoke, I noticed that I changed. I wish I knew how that happened. The warlord I served was always creative with his punishments... sometimes torturing someone almost to the point that they are about to die.

I plan on seeing my parents eventually, it is just a matter of tracking them down. I recently found out that they no longer live on the farm I grew up on. I've been scouring for anything I can find about them. I hope to learn of their whereabouts soon.

I am curious: what's like being a bard? I doubt you just sit there and sing for everyone. Where did you learn your magic? I find it fascinating that you know how to use it.

I hope you are faring well in your latest voyage. It sounds like you get to have all sorts of adventures.

Fair winds find you,

Your adorably awkward spymaster


"Who are you writing to?" a voice behind him asked.

Isao's body jolted. "Just a friend."

"Is that all? Then why are you blushing?"

He turned to see Hikurai behind him, grinning from ear to ear. "Who is this friend you're writing to?"

Isao rolled his eyes. "Her name is Rose."

"Oh, so you-"

"Stop. We're just friends." He had a courier come in to send the letter out.

"Just friends?" asked Hikurai. "Are you sure?"

"I'm sure..."
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 17, 2021, 01:15:22 AM
It again took more than a bit of time for the runes she'd planted on Isao to lead his letter back to her. Once it did she rolled her eyes and headed for the hammock in her quarters to read it. She'd explained to the others the man just wanted someone to talk to a bit of her time so she didn't get teased about it because they all understood that sometimes people got lonely. After reading the missive over a few times she at last settled in to writing her response. Gif was hunting so he wasn't with her - a fact she felt acutely - but that was alright at least she had something to distract herself with.

Master Spy,

Intent and action speak for themselves and yours were clear in what they meant. Be that as it may, this correspondence isn't about that it is a mutually agreed upon thing so the incident is neither here nor there. At least you acknowledge that what you did was wrong in what you did so that is something in your favor. Doesn't mean I forgive  you, but it is a start.

That aside, it's good you found yourself a place to belong. Everyone should have that place. Having a place to call your own and knowing you can go back there no matter how far you roam is a good feeling. Even a nomad like myself has a place to belong, my home just happens to move constantly. The ship is my home; it is my place to belong. It might seem strange to you, but it is who I am.

I'm sorry that you get lonely, I hope my letters do help with that. I may not like you much, but that doesn't mean I am cruel. No one deserves to be lonely if it can be avoided. Perhaps you should focus on finding yourself your hand to hold instead of pursuing friendship with me. I'm sure there are plenty of women who would love you given the chance. It would help you not to be so lonely, just a thought.

So then...if you weren't born Oni then were you human once? Oni are immortal so it must seem like such a curse if you were human before. I myself am Fae so such things are second nature to me. Violence begets violence so I've no doubt your life has been full of it if you came from the realm of man. All species are capable of violence, don't get me wrong, but I've found that often the most violent comes from the realm of man.

Being a bard...it's challenging at times. It is more than just singing yes, it's history. Music to soothe troubled hearts, quiet words to cool hot tempers, and the memory to tell the stories of those that have come before us so we learn from their mistakes and our own. As to my magic...well I was born with it. All Fae have magic at the core of them and each draws power from a different source. Mine just happens to be sky. I learned on my own, no one taught me. It was hard at times but I've managed just fine. It drew me to Gif, my magic did, so I can never regret it.

Life is an adventure,  you know, being an Air Pirate is just part of that adventure. I hope you find out what happened to your parents, and remember what I wrote earlier about finding someone. Don't be alone, that's sad.

Fair winds find you,
Rose


She rolled up the message and sent it out, feeling strangely nostalgic at the mention of him finding a hand to hold. It was an old phrase not many used nowadays and was considered old fashioned at times but that was fine. Also if he found someone maybe he'd leave her alone. One could hope, at least.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 17, 2021, 11:44:44 AM
After a few days, just like last time, Isao received Rose's letter. He knew this because Hikurai came ambling into the war room waving it in his hand.

"I believe this is for you," he told Isao.

Isao huffed. "Thank you."

"Perhaps I can make a suggestion about what to write in the next letter."

"Not the best idea right now."

Hikurai shrugged. "Alright, but let me know if you change your mind."

Now alone, Isao took the time to read the letter over. How could he not tell that she was a Fae? He couldn't have been that oblivious when he first met her. Still, the phrase she used... a hand to hold... where had he heard that before? No one in the kingdom used it. Perhaps it was a quirk of hers.

Rose,

Home is where you feel belonging. The ship is your home, but I do not find it strange. I don't know what your life was like before you became an Air Pirate, nor will I ask you about it. That is something that should be brought it if and when you're ready to talk about it. As for finding someone here... well, all the women keep their distance or try to use me in some way, no matter if they live here or if they are visiting. I simply chose to not try and find someone for the time being. Because I wasn't born an oni, I was cast aside by women of my kind. They preferred "those who were born with a darkness about them." I find that to be nonsense. The women that have been kind always leave. Who wants to be with a man who keeps secrets all the time and can't discuss work with them?

Your letters do help some. For the time being, I feel more comfortable pursuing a friendship as pursuing a relationship hasn't worked at all in the past.

The phrase "your hand to hold" sounds familiar, but yet I don't believe I've ever heard it. Is that a common phrase where you're from? It is a nice sentiment, though.

To answer your question, yes. I come from the realm of man. I agree that the most violence comes from there but all species are capable of violence.

I have no doubt that you enjoy being a bard since you consider your crew as a family and Gif is there with you all the time. I can imagine it was difficult to learn magic on your own without much guidance. But you're a strong woman, you always find a way to figure things out.

Out of curiosity, what would you do if you weren't an Air Pirate? I'm sure you would have been something as equally interesting.

And please, Isao is just fine. You need to use my title every time.

Fair winds find you,
Isao


Sending the letter off, he sighed to himself. He wasn't getting his hopes up too soon, was he?
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 17, 2021, 02:02:43 PM
Though the letter found her fine, it was actually much longer before she could respond. The reasoning behind this lay in a nasty and rather unexpected series of lightning storms followed by the creation of a hurricane field. It meant it was more than a month before things settled enough that Evanna found the time to return the letter. At least she was relieved of her duties for a few days to recover because of her constant use of sky magic to keep them all alive. She was exhausted and sore so the chance to just sit in her hammock and relax was a welcome one. This time Gif was settled against her shoulder and she nuzzled against him in quiet contentment. She'd nearly lost him, he'd nearly lost her, the strain on her telepathic pathways still rang through her mind from the near loss so being together was best for them right now.

She knew how terrified Gif had been, had felt his fear as part of herself, but now the danger had passed and they were still together so they should make the most of the situation while the calm lasted. The life of an Air Pirate was never certain and who knew when next danger would find them. She knew Gif didn't like the danger, but loved the freedom of being with her without being hunted so there was nothing for it. Evanna made a mental note to take them out for shore leave at some point into the forested mountain rain of Belvair City next time they were near it. Gif would love it there and the serenity of nature would do both of them very well. As to the letter, that she had to consider for a very long time before finally responding to it since it had been so long.

As you wish it then - Isao,

Sorry this letter finds you after so long, but I fear the ship has fallen on rough skies that kept my attention whole-heartedly until just now. Our lives were in danger for a while; nothing I'm not used to as it's normal for danger to be part of life for an Air Pirate, but it still took its toll. All are well with some injuries but my magic has been used to its limit and I'm fairly exhausted now that I can finally get some rest. I nearly lost Gif as well, it wasn't pleasant given the nature of our bond. I don't think you would understand well, given the familiar bond isn't part of most cultures, but to lose him is to lose part of myself thus the situation was fairly painful. He's with me though, and we're taking the time now to reaffirm our bond and soothe the damage done for both our sakes.

I think those that judge you by your circumstance are foolish, but that is neither here nor there. If continuing the correspondence is what you desire then I won't stop you. We all have secrets, both you and I, and it is a mark of someone character to be patient enough to wait for secrets to be shared rather than be upset about not being able to force those same secrets too early; though perhaps I am odd in thinking so. Honestly though, the fact you were born to man explains a lot of the difficulty you've had with dealing with me. I've never been human, thus our cultures are vastly different so misunderstandings are bound to happen. It doesn't excuse, but it does explain and I'll take that into consideration moving forward.

Learning magic...it's second nature to me, and though I taught myself I was also taught in a way by the soul of the sky itself. Once I learned not to fight to control the nature of the sky it was much easier to learn what I needed to do. To that effect, I'd bet you're wondering how you didn't realize I was Fae when we met. The answer is simple, I used a simple glamour to pass as human to avoid drawing unnecessary attention to myself. I'm considered...exotic in this particular area of the world and should they realize what I am...well I've no wish to be kidnapped and sold into slavery again; it wasn't fun the first time. So try not to make a big deal out of it, alright? Not to offend, but I've found some species, like humanity, tend to crave that which they feel beyond their reach and I've no wish to experience such a thing again.

As to the phrase...it's very old I can say that. It's...how to explain...it's something that's just apart of me rather than some learned sentiment. I've honestly never heard another use it aside from me, but the fact remains that I believe in it strongly. It's the belief that somewhere out there is a person whose hand fits perfectly inside your own. It is your compliment, your other half. Perhaps that is overly romantic of me, but it is my belief just the same. My people do have a similar concept though not exactly the same. We call it your Compliment, that person whose mind fits perfectly against your own and whose orbit you are forever drawn to no matter the time or distance between. It is...rare to find and the knowing involved is said to be rather frightening to those caught unawares by it.

If I wasn't an Air Pirate....well the answer depends on some circumstances. The captain helped to remove me from...a certain situation and I'm uncertain I'd be where I am today without it. Given my connection to the sky, probably I'd still be a wanderer if I managed to remove myself still without the help. Being an Air Pirate is the thing that I got to choose, what I'd be if I wasn't doesn't bare speaking of. Given a choice...? I'd probably be a travelling minstrel or something. Perhaps travelling amongst the Gypsy in the far south given my love of their nomadic ways. I couldn't say, though I'm content where I'm at. What about for you? Surely you couldn't have wanted to be a spy given you were forced to become something other than human. Perhaps remaining on the farm?

Just so you know, the address of your title in my last few letters was meant in teasing not to be formal; but I endeavor to use your name now as you wish it. I believe that is all I can think to write this time. Until next time then.

Fair winds find you,
Rose

She realized she may have told him more than she initially wanted to, but that was all fine since they were so far apart and it felt good to just speak her mind to someone other than Gif for once. Pushing the thoughts aside, she sent the letter on its way and settled back into her healing bond with Gif so she could let the two of them just be for a little while. She shouldn't speak to him of such things, after all there wasn't a human alive that could understand the bonds that Fae formed since their minds weren't made for it.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 17, 2021, 08:33:09 PM
Days went by, and Isao grew worried that Rose no longer wanted to write to him. Did something happen? Did he say something wrong? He found it hard to concentrate as he sent out ravens and various spies to carry out tasks as he pondered over what could have happened.

"Isao..." Hikurai called as he walked in with a letter. "For you, I believe."

Isao quickly took the letter from him and frantically read it over.

"Why don't I help write your next letter?"

"That's not necessary..." He located some paper before he began to write.

Rose,

I'm relieved to hear that you, Gif, and your crew are alright. I can imagine how terrifying it was to almost lose Gif, even though I don't know much about having a bond with a familiar. I hope you can get all the rest you can get.

Yes, most forget that I was born to man. And some issues have come about because of it. I have learned to move past that. That being said, I still have some difficulties with being an oni. My abilities sometimes get out of hand or my instincts of being a guardian overtake me. But that hasn't happened in sometime. I'm told that I become more intimidating at that point.

I was wondering how you passed as a human when we met. That makes sense now. I understand those... circumstances aren't fun, that is all I will say about it. But I understand the need of using magic to conceal your identity. I do that as well whenever I left the city. So long as I wasn't provoked, then things went smoothly.

Well, it is nice sentiment to believe in. It isn't overly romantic, either. Most people have a better half, I believe. It's just a matter of finding them. I... well, you know what I said before. Embarrassing and awkward as it was.

I see that both of us are where we are now thanks to someone helping us our of our situations. That is another thing we have in common. But a traveling minstrel or a Gypsy would have been an interesting pick as well. As for me... I'm not sure. I probably would have remained on the farm, although I probably would have gone off to be a sailor or a trader or... anything that let me move about from place to place. Wanting to be a spy wasn't exactly my choice, but I wasn't ready to be a soldier again so soon after escaping one warlord. You'll have to forgive me, this is the most open I ave been with anyone for some time. I feel a little vulnerable because of it.

And I see I can't decipher teasing in a letter either. My apologies. Get all the rest you can.

Fair winds find you,
Isao


"Compliment her eyes," said Hikurai.

"No," replied Isao.

"Her smile?"

"Already did..."

Hikurai pursed his lips and opened his wings slightly. "Maybe her... well, what is it that you like about her that no one else would say about her?"

Isao paused as he sent the letter out. He could think of maybe one or two things, though based on her reaction from his compliments before, it was likely unwise to try again so soon.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 17, 2021, 09:36:37 PM
The next letter found her in better spirits though she was still sore and worn out from before. It was getting better and the crew was understanding considering what she'd done for them so that made it all a bit easier. She smiled faintly at the message and shook her head; settling back into her hammock once more and nuzzling against Gif as she enjoyed the warm press of his mind against her own.

Isao,

Sorry to have worried you, really, it wasn't my intent I promise you. I'm still very tired and sore, it's a serious thing to nearly lose my familiar...honestly it's something that could kill me if you'd believe it. I tell you that in confidence, so don't try and use it against me or I'm not against coming to kill you myself for the attempt.

Threats aside, I've met Oni before and they range in temperament so I imagine it has been an interesting time for you. They are an overly protective lot and gods forbid someone goes after their mate. They are an honorable lot though and never turn down a charge no matter the difficulty. They can be hot-headed though but I've found most to be of good humor.

It must be...frustrating to have become something you were not, the instincts alone are intense I know. It's a note of your strength that you weren't driven mad by such things. It must be some powerful curse to have turned you, though I couldn't imagine what it was since I stay away from such types of dark magic. Still, it is sad to have to become something you are not and I'm sorry for that.

Speaking of romantic notions, do tell me what caused you to say such things to me before? You sounded completely out of your mind and it certainly didn't leave a good impression on me. It is possible to have past lives, I don't doubt that, but what you said came across more as a bad pick-up line than an honest sentiment and I'd like to know what brought it on? Especially as, given certain things being true, it's completely impossible. Still...I find myself curious as to what drew you to my side that day; especially given how massive of a fool you made of yourself.

Something in common indeed, but don't put much emphasis on it alright? Working the land is a noble ambition, honestly, and if you fancy travel being a trader would have suited just as well. It's terrible you didn't have a choice, I know all about that, but at least where you ended up feels like where you belong so that's something. I apologize if writing to me makes you feel vulnerable, you don't have to tell me anything you know. I don't ask for such personal things and you shouldn't feel obligated to tell me. It's a matter of trust, after all, and we barely know each other so don't feel like you must make yourself vulnerable in writing to me.

Gif and I rest as much as we can, and we thank you for your concern. Don't worry, I won't push myself when I don't have to, I know better and Gif would scold me besides that. Nothing so aggravating as being scolded by another that can reach inside your mind in the early hours of morning and wake you up with his displeasure, after all. It's why I try to avoid it because he does so love to aggravate me when he's upset with me. It's fine, I drop him in flour when he gets on my nerves too much so it all works out.

Fair winds find you and starlight guide your steps,
Rose


She hummed quietly at the press of warmth against her mind from Gif. He was curious about this strange man that had threatened them. "I don't know really, Gif, but I think he's just lonely. He was human so I don't expect much from him, and writing to him doesn't harm anything. Besides, it's not like he's my Compliment or anything. That's not possible since he was human, so he wouldn't have the right sort of mind for someone like me. I think he's just infatuated with a pretty face and it'll pass with time. Until it does, indulging him hurts nothing."

She felt Gif's sorrow over her being alone and nuzzled into him again, sending quiet reassurance back his way. "Don't worry Gif, I'm very young yet and will find my hand to hold one day. That person that's the Compliment to me is out there somewhere, I just have to find them." It was true enough, and she used both terms to mean the same thing. Besides, she couldn't ever be lonely with Gif by her side and in her mind. His affection echoed in her mind and she returned it before sending the letter off again so she could continue resting.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 17, 2021, 10:32:34 PM
Isao managed to get his hands on the next letter when it arrived before Hikurai did as he was afraid of him wanting to barge into his love life. He a small smile on his face as it seems that the tone of her letters became gradually warmer.

With that in mind, he secluded himself in the tower for the rest of the morning.

Rose,

I know it wasn't your intention to worry me. You know I have no intention to use anything against you.

Oh, yes. Oni tend to be very protective over their mates. I learned that the hard way once, but in my defense, I wasn't trying to flirt with her. I was simply complimenting her and her husband overreacted. Frustrating is an understatement sometimes. It takes so much to fight off the instincts, and it takes so much willpower to just to keep me from losing myself. I don't blame you for steering clear. But please don't be sorry. It is just a part of my past.

Honestly, I do not know what caused me to say such things when we met. I know it sounded better in my head but... I don't know. All I know is that I found myself strangely drawn to you and I wanted to speak with you. Even now I still feel it. I don't know what it is about you, but I want to know what it is. I'll probably always be known to you as the idiot who went on about knowing you in another life.

It's alright. I know of like being vulnerable. Do not tell anyone I told you. I'll never hear the end of it. Already, the prince I serve is eager to figure out who I'm writing to. He's not convinced that you and I are only friends.

Gif scolds you? I never would have thought of that. How do familiars choose their people?

Fair winds find you. Starlight guide your steps,
Isao


He sent it without a second thought. But why would she start ending her letters with both "Fair winds find you" and "Starlight guide your steps?" What does the second one even mean?
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 18, 2021, 12:07:15 AM
It was honestly the first day in a long while that she'd felt well and herself again once the letter found her once more. She stretched her arms skyward; taking in the sunlight and enjoying the warmth. Gif flew alongside the ship, stretching his wings and taking in the magic in the sky around him as he did so. He was a fae creature like she was so it was good for him to draw magic from the same source, it made them closer. Once again settling herself up in the crow's nest, Evanna considered what to write before doing so.

Isao,

The warning had to be made for its own sake, you know it did. That aside, thank you. I don't know if I trust your words as truth yet, but I'll give you the benefit of the doubt for now.

Yes they are very protective over mates as well as those they are drawn to protect, it's really amazing how you can see the change in an Oni from calm and cordial to sudden so full of fire and life when their mate is about. I admit I do envy them that passion though I know one day it will be my turn to experience it when I find my own mate.

As to you and your instincts, a word of advice to you regarding that. The more you fight your own instincts the stronger they will become until they overwhelm you. If you move with them instead of against them you'll both learn more about yourself and not be so strained against the person you have now become. You won't lose yourself if you give yourself to your instincts unless you fear them, those instincts can only make you stronger I promise you that. You set yourself up for failure in fighting that.

As to the oni and his mate, it was likely because you are another male of the species that he took offense to and not so much the flirting. Oni are very territorial in their protection of a mate, after all. As you say though, the past is the past and I will leave it to lie where it is. I am only sorry that such a thing was done to someone that was innocent of wrongdoing. To be cursed to be something you are not, especially for a human, can be the greatest cruelty I can imagine. It would be akin to taking Gif's wings for me. But as you said, it is past so I will drop that subject now.

All things sound better in our heads before we say them, but it seemed you couldn't contain yourself that day and it was...a bit insulting honestly. You won't always be seen as the idiot who spoke of past lives; though I may always see you as the male that made a fool of himself quite epically in an attempt to impress me. Honestly it's a bit adorable; especially considering I can make you blush so easily and you are a large male so that is saying something.

What we choose to do in our free time is not the business of others, Isao, and you can tell that prince of yours to pull his nose out of your ass and mind his own business. He knows nothing and shouldn't speak of such. We aren't exactly friends either, we just...we just are for now.

Oh yes, Gif scolds me quite often when he doesn't like something I've done. He's a fae bird after all and thus his lifeforce is tied to magic just like mine is. He is just as intelligent as you and I, after all, and sometimes I think he's smarter and just hides it so he doesn't embarrass me accidently. How  do they choose...they don't, the magic does. It's...difficult to explain. It's...a brush of warmth that pulls at your mind and soul. It's a knowing that you're meant to be somewhere else and that someone waits for you there. I heard his call from miles away and broke him free from his cage. He was a hatchling and terrified and I killed two people to get to him; I couldn't do anything else. It takes over the entirety of you and before you know it there's this other living breathing being whose soul is so intricately tied to your own that it's like they were always there and you had never been apart. Distance doesn't matter. It's...rare. Magical beings like Gif don't bond like that very often, I am honored he chose me and I always will be.

Ah, and I've said entirely too much. It's not something easy to explain to someone that isn't inherently telepathic. I mean nothing cruel by that truly it's just how things are. It's beyond words to explain and just as much instinct as trusting the magic. That aside, why does your precious prince seem to think he can butt in to another's conversation?

Fair winds find you and starlight guide your steps,
Rose

PS - 'Starlight guide your steps' is said because you travel over land. It's the landbound equivalent to 'Fair winds find you.' It means safe travels.


Shaking her head, Evanna stretched once more before sending the letter off. She stood and dropped from the crow's nest, drifting in the air currents as she did so before coming to rest back on the deck. Gif immediately landed on her shoulder and nuzzled into her; he knew she was thinking about the day they'd bonded and he was just as grateful she'd found him as she was that he'd trusted her enough to accept her. They didn't doubt within the bond and never would. It really was something impossible to explain to someone that was born of man and thus was mortal. They tended to be very closed-minded about such things. No matter, at least she'd tried.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 18, 2021, 01:22:57 PM
Isao was able to slip out of the palace and move about the marketplace as they were rumors that slave traders were likely afoot. He used magic similar to Rose's glamour magic to hide among the people in case he ran into his targets. Some whispers of missing loved ones here and there and a glimpse of the traders in question were enough for him to slip by and pickpocket one of them to have a map and letter in his possession. Satisfied, he quietly returned to the palace where he went over his findings. He found a letter waiting for him and read it before writing a reply.

Rose,

I know the warning had to be made. I realize I haven't gained your trust yet, so all I can do is give you my word and hope that it would be enough.

Honestly, keeping my instincts in check is easier said than done. And because of that, I hesitate to start traveling again. But yes, my only crime was freeing a woman who would have been forced to serve the soldiers in... less than savory ways. I couldn't stand by and let that happen. She only reveled in her freedom for a few shirt moments before she was met with a rain of arrows.

I am so sorry about how I went about it. It was never my intention to be insulting. And when have I ever blushed? As I recall, you're the one who does the blushing.

I'm joking, by the way.

The prince seems to think he's good at putting people together. All I can do is shoo him away and tell him that I'm not taking his suggestions. He seems to be getting a little better with it.

I'm glad that you and Gif found each other and that you two can share a special bond. It's better that he moves about freely than in a cage.

At the moment, I'm attempting to track down slave traders as they have been causing trouble and taking the locals as of late. I may ir may not have to leave the city to track them down. I will let you know.

And please, don't worry about saying too much. Nothibg you tell me will be used against you.

Fair winds find you,
Isao


As he sent the letter out, he received a short note from the courier.

Isao,

Please come see me at your earliest convenience.

Prince Hikurai
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 19, 2021, 11:57:18 AM
Word of the the children of Air Pirates going missing reached the ship and everyone had been called in to help find them. It wasn't unusual for people to take the children thinking no one would miss them since they belonged to the nomad clans, but it was a very serious matter indeed. She was preparing to go landside herself to aid in the search with Gif in the air when she snagged the letter and some strange sense of alarm went through her as she finished. She couldn't place the reason; perhaps her own sense of intuition telling her of impending danger, but it shouldn't cause her to worry for someone she barely liked. She was one to listen to her instincts though, so she was quick to return the missive before she headed out to assist in the search.

Isao,

Hopefully this letter finds you in time, be safe I sense danger on the winds. I don't know how to explain it, but just....when you are investigating the traders do be careful. I trust my instinct, even if I don't like you much at all most of the time. Still the feeling of foreboding won't leave and I've never ignored those feelings before and I'm not about to start now.

It might be awhile before I write again, some of the clan children have been kidnapped. It happens from time to time as they seem to believe we won't retaliate. As I said before though, we are our own nation and we don't abandon our own. Isao...this may sound like the strangest thing ever, and even I don't understand it completely but...

I'll be in South Port City until we find the children so I can aid in the search. If something happens...if anything happens to you come and find me. It's not more than a few miles from your kingdom. Please, for the sake of my nightmares becoming reality, if something happens come and find me and I will help you. And remember, your instincts are strange and different to you, but don't try and fight them and they will see you well.

I hope my intuition is wrong in this, but please take my words to heart. I will help you if I can.

Starlight guide your steps,
Rose


Shaking her head to try and get rid of the feelings of dread clutching her heart, Evanna was quick to head out of the ship and launch Gif into the air to begin searching for those young ones lost to them. They wouldn't leave until they were found, and they vanished from this area barely a few hours ago. They'd find them, they monitored the air and sea and land. The young ones would be found and justice would be served. She just hoped she was wrong about something bad happening to Isao. Even more, she wished she knew why she worried so.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 19, 2021, 08:35:37 PM
Isao went to Hikurai's room once he received the note. "You called for me?" he asked.

"Yes," replied Hikurai. "I'm afraid that I need to ask you to track down those slave traders. It seems they're not only taking our people away, but they are targeting other groups as well. We need to stop them as soon as possible."

"I can easily retract their steps as I have a map and letter of theirs."

Hikurai gave Isao a reassuring smile. "I can always count on you to be resourceful."

As Isao made quick with his packing, he found a letter from Rose. So it would seem that her people were being targeted as well.

Rose,

I fear that I do have to leave Okaona for a time to go free those kidnapped by the slave traders. I will be as careful as I can be. I will come to you if anything happens, I promise.

Unfortunately, I can't promise that I will return in one piece. I will do whatever is necessary to deal with the slave traders. If I can, I will come to you and aid you. I hope to write to you again soon.

Starlight guide your steps,
Isao


He made his way out to the city gate where he began his trek out toward South Port City. Thankfully, the map would help lead him to the slave traders' next rest stop as they would no doubt need to recuperate before going to their next target city.

Quickly teleporting to where the map showed their small hideout, he pulled a cowl over his head and began to sneak into the camp. He scanned the camp over numerous times and figured out his exit strategy as he slipped by the supply tent. With a few other spies waiting for him, he moved to where some of the captives were kept and he slit the guard's throat from behind. He signaled for two spies to come in from the back as he worked to free the townsfolk from their binds.

"Where are the others?" he whispered to a young man.

"They're on the other side of the camp," the man whispered back. "That guard said the rest would be in some cave."

Nodding, Isao had the two spies take everyone out to safety as he began to move to the other side of the camp to free more captives.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 19, 2021, 11:39:46 PM
Evanna never got the letter, she was outside of the ship when it arrived and it was left for her to see whenever she returned. Still, she'd be angry if he came to assist when she hadn't asked him to. She had other things on her mind just then as she spread out her magic to see if anything had passed through there to disturb the nature flow of the sky magic. Something had and it meant she was hunting and her mind was far from the man that had worried her so before.

Gif flew overhead, touching his mind to her own periodically so they both knew the other was alright while they were on the hunt. She may be the bard for her ship, but Evanna was far from being helpless or weak. She was vicious when she had to be and knew how to fight; the blades hidden on her person spoke to that fact. She moved with silent steps, barely leaving footprints in the mud as she kept her steps light and sought for what she knew had to be nearby.

She had long moved away from the sounds of the large city and was at home in the deep roofed forest that surrounded the port town. It was some time later that she picked up the trail and let herself slip into the mindset of the hunter. She pushed out all warmth other than her bond to Gif and moved with lethal intent towards those that needed justice. She was fae, and no stranger to death. She valued life, but not when it came to situations like this.

She actually got into several fights along the way as she discovered a cage in a half submerged cave filled with small children. She took a nasty knock to the head before she slit the man's throat and watched dispassionately as he dropped and quickly bled to death. She slid into the cold of her mind as she dropped three others present; her mind full of thoughts from long ago of another lost child forced into a cage and any hint of compassion in her was smothered by a deep, dark rage.

Blood was everywhere by the time she came back to herself and the tide was coming faster now so she knew she had little time. At least Air Pirates always taught their young to swim. Getting the cage open wasn't easy and she ended up using some of her magic to loose the children and then had them clump together and hold onto her and each other as they all began to swim through the icy waters towards land. She knew there was danger still; there were others, she was ready for them then as she and the children slowly began to make their way back to the ship.

She ended up having to hide them all in a hollow tree and put up a glamor to keep them safe. She had her own wounds to treat first so she didn't weaken from blood loss. She was still alright, but she had a headache and she was dizzy enough to worry Gif. Still, she knew what she had to do. The children had to be saved and she'd risk all of herself to see them so.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 20, 2021, 12:03:02 PM
He slipped to the other side of the camp where he dispatched four more guards and free more captives. Once he confirmed that all hostages were freed, he drew a symbol in the sand for them to simply teleport back to Okaona.

Now turning his attention to where the cave would be, he thought he caught a glimpse of Rose heading toward the same cave. Knowing that she didn't ask for his help, he simply let her be before a small cry came from a tiny caravan nearby.

"C'mon!" one of the men yelled.yel "We've already lost most of the cargo! We can't lose these Air Pirate brats!"

Isao shook his head, noticing a few small children in a cage. Taking a deep breath, he teleported to the cage and put a finger to his lips as the traders continued to argue. Slipping his fingers into one of their pockets, he fished out the key and quietly unlocked the door.

"You're gonna haveta pay for them once we reach-"

A large lightning bolt struck the man before he could finish.

Isao scooped up the children and made a run for it, teleporting from place to place in order to throw the traders off.

"Oy!"

Isao stopped by the hollow tree before setting the children down. He stumbled forward as an arrow struck his back. Before anyone could blink, he sent a wave of electricity toward the group and charged toward them, now towering at roughly nine feet with enlarged horns and fangs. His fingers grew into claws as he swung them at the traders and let out a horrible roar.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 21, 2021, 06:20:54 PM
Evanna didn't expect the ruckus that occurred beyond her in the forest as she hid with the children in their hidden hollow as she kept them safe. So when a familiar presence hit her senses she scowled first then realized it was a coincidence and let her ruffled feathers settle back down. She was startled when he sat another few children down where she was hiding and pulled the children in with her and soothed them with quiet words in her native language.

She looked at her injuries and pressed some nearby moss into them to stem the blood flow and ease the pain a bit as she grit her teeth against the pain and breathed carefully so she didn't frighten the children with what was going on. A sense of ill-ease hit her hard just before a bellowing roar filled the air. Her hair stood up on end and she quietly warned the children to stay where they were and be safe.

He was massive in his true - so to speak - form, yet she knew this was normal for Oni; even formerly human ones. Still the task before her was a bit daunting. She didn't care if he killed the kidnappers; they deserved it, but if he kept going forward this way he was going to get himself killed. Sighing she stepped out; drawing her swords as she did and launched herself into the fight.

She moved with the breeze and avoided those that got to close to her; keeping part of her attention on the now feral Oni that was rampaging nearby. When they finally had some breathing room she turned and quickly sheathed her swords before holding small hands up and announcing very clearly to gain attention. "Isao! Be easy male, be easy. Your enemies are defeated, you've won. Easy now."

She gently pressed her magic against his own feeling a strange familiarity in the vibrations but pushing it aside and taking it to be caused by their very similar types of magic. She couldn't control lightning, but it was still part of sky magic so she was capable of dealing with it. Some strange instinct came over her and she lightly placed her hands just above the rampaging oni's chest without touching as she didn't have permission.

She whispered lowly to him, soft and melodic words that she knew meant nothing to him but were natural to her. She just hoped this worked as she was going on her own instinct here. Something was pulling her to help, so she was, besides he'd saved some of the children. This was the least she could do.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 21, 2021, 07:47:07 PM
Isao continued to swing his open hands at the kidnappers, easily tearing a couple of them to shreds. As he kept on, he was struck with more arrows as he cut the rest of the men down. He continued to mutilate the bodies as he kept on with his rampage. It didn't matter if he had won the fight long before now, he was so consumed with rage that he continued to throw corpses around and let his lightning go in every which way.

Hearing Rose's voice had his falter a little as he heard her say things in the most soothing way. He soon began to lower his hands and felt himself losing all feeling in his legs. Snorting softly, he nearly collapsed as he felt himself revert to his former self. His horns and fangs began to shrink and is muscles relaxed as he started to feel himself reaching for the earth to keep his balance.

As he took deep breaths, his vision grew hazy from all the wounds he garnered while he tried to keep his head up. Soon, he collapsed at Rose's feet, too exhausted from his rampage and the blood loss he had. Still, her whispers were so melodic. Even as he lied at her feet with tattered clothes, he attempted to look up at her as if he was waiting for her to tell him that what he did was good. He just hoped that she and the children were alright.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 21, 2021, 09:30:18 PM
Evanna let out a startled huff as the large male before her suddenly shut down as she spoke to him. She watched him impassively as he staggered near her before falling at her feet; struggling to look back up at her as she spoke softly to him. Shaking her head as something inside her raged in alarm, she sighed and moved forward to kneel next to him. "You, sir, are more trouble than you're worth. Still, you did find some of the children."

Huffing again, she mentally summoned Gif to let him know she was safe before sending him away again. She knelt next to Isao and gently pressed his hair away from his face. "There you are, you're a good male. The danger is passed, the children are safe. It's alright, rest easy, you are safe." She'd have to take care of him and that rubbed her the wrong way.

The melodic words began again as she cast what healing magic she knew over the worst injuries to staunch the bleeding before heading back to the children to comfort them before heading back to Isao with her satchel in hand as it had her supplies. She did what she could to bandage up the wounds on his body and considered the children. She knew the risk in what she was thinking about, but the children needed to be safe.

She sighed and decided it was worth the risk. "Come on darlings, let's go home. Don't worry, the male is coming too since he helped. I bet you lot miss your parents." They crowded around her and she looked skywards, drawing on strength from her magical core and the distant Gif before breathing deeply and putting her hands on Isao. This was because he was larger than her so moving him was harder.

The wind kicked up around her, the breeze warm and crackling with energy before suddenly the clearing was empty. Sparks of magic floated off her skin and the transfer took just a moment and then they were back in South Port town. The children she'd sent back to the ship where Gif waited with the captain to bring them home. She had brought Isao to the room she'd gotten at the town inn.

She kept up the melodic flow of words as she worked around him, cleaning him up and bandaging up his wounds. She used herbs to ease whatever pain he might be in and help with blood loss. Mostly the chanting was to help keep the male calm until he recovered himself enough. Once she'd settled Isao she finally took the time to properly look after her own wounds. Her clothes were soaked through and she looked a mess, but at least everyone was finally safe.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 22, 2021, 11:09:24 AM
Isao drifted in and out of consciousness as Rose looked after the children and transported them the South Port City. It wasn't until much later when he finally stirred and put a hand to his head.

He was covered in bandages and he felt his head throbbing somewhat. A quick glance around the room was enough for him. He even saw Rose tending to her own wounds as he tried to sit up.

"I... I hope my coming didn't startle you too much," he said. "I didn't even know you'd be out there." Well, he didn't think she would be in the same area as him as he thought that she would be at another slave trader's camp. But he supposed that she made quick work of them beforehand.

Lying on his back, he began to wonder what her reaction wad when he lost control of himself. Still...

"Thank you," he said meekly, "for saving my life."
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 24, 2021, 07:24:06 PM
Evanna was busy pulling her hair back up into a proper ponytail when she sensed the first signs of her companion waking before he spoke to her. She turned to him, green eyes full of quiet awareness as she shook her head and returned to his side. "Try not to move too much, silly male, your body is still healing itself. It's fine, by the way. It wasn't like you came here because I was here in the first place to disrupt me. Also, I'm relieved to have been near when...that happened. You were very much not yourself."

She remembered with crystal clarity the strength and power of him as he changed into his true shape. That he had no control of it was cause for concern but moreso was the feeling of his magic against her own. It was...not unpleasant but just...troubling. Honestly she didn't know what to make of it and that was what worried her the most. Pushing the thoughts from her mind she refocused her attention on the man that was, for the moment, her patient. He seemed concerned and then thanked her for saving him. She only shrugged. "I only did the right thing, there's no need to thank me for it."

Life debts were a serious thing amongst her people, yes, but only if both parties agreed to such. She would never put someone unknowing of such things through that, it just wasn't who she was. She regarded Isao for a long moment in quiet contemplation before she blinked and carefully stretched to test the boundaries of movement in her body now that she was injured. This led to more than a few moments where she winced at the tight pull but that was fine at least now she knew her own limits.

She knew he was likely worried about what he had become, being human originally meant he fought against such things as losing control to instinct after all, so the least she could do was help him a bit while he recovered enough to bring himself home. "If you're worried about before, don't be. The only ones harmed were the ones that deserved it most. Their deaths will not be mourned. That aside...thank you for helping save the children." She inclined her head in quiet respect before turning her gaze outward towards the sky and listening to the distant Gif as he informed her of his travels.

She sighed, pushing a hand through her short-cropped hair. "Gif tells me there is a storm coming quickly, so it will be best for us to remain here until it passes. I don't mind rain, but we both are injured and I'd rather not risk it. A few days should be more than enough for both of us to be adequately recovered from our injuries as well." For her that was the truth but Isao was a mystery so she would have to wait and see.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 24, 2021, 07:52:04 PM
Isao nodded. "Yes, I... am not myself when I transform. I get provoked fairly easily whenever I'm trying to fight off whoever." It certainly brought back some unpleasant memories from when he served the warlord. He reached up slightly when she winced from pulling a muscle.

As she thanked him for saving some of the children, he smiled softly. "I only did what I thought was right." Settling into the bed some, he sighed to himself. "I still have nightmares about what I've done. When I change... and I have strange dreams from time to time. I don't know how to describe them."

He had never told anyone about his dreams before. It was something he considered personal. But the strange dreams he had... he never recognized where he was. Some of the buildings' structure always looked familiar to him. The language he spoke sounded similar to his native tongue. Even a few faces in the dreams looked familiar. But he could never describe what he saw exactly.

He sighed when he heard that a storm was coming. "I suppose this gives us a chance to get to know each other better..." He turned away for a moment. "If that's alright with you."

As he tried to stretch his back, he winced and let out a soft hiss.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 25, 2021, 12:14:28 PM
Evanna regards her companion quietly for a long moment as he comments about not being himself in his other shape. She supposed that would be so to someone that was once human but really she'd told him it was that he feared it so that caused the problems. Perhaps he needed to hear it more to understand, but somehow she felt he'd be stubborn about it. "It makes sense you wouldn't be yourself in that state. Besides the fact you don't have a grounding force to help you keep steady, the more you fear a thing the harder it is to control. I could help you, if you'd like."

She nodded in respect over his comment about saving the children. She did appreciate it and she understood about the nightmares killing others could cause; though the dreams caused by his transformation seemed a bit odd. She considered him again and shook her head before settling down against the far wall away from him. He seemed pleased about getting to know her more, but honestly she was still hesitant in his presence. Nothing to do for it though since they'd be stuck here for the next few days. Besides that, she wouldn't abandon someone that couldn't even stand.

She shifted and glowered at him when he winced and hissed in pain when he stretched the wrong way. "Do try not to pull out those stitches, male. I don't want you bleeding out again before I could fix it. So take it easy, won't you?" She paused for a long moment then shook her head carefully. "Dreams are often our mind's way of trying to tell us something, in this case it might be because your human mind is trying to understand the changes caused to you because you are now Oni. It is a trait I've seen many times that those that fear what they do not understand cause themselves many undue problems."

She looked up at him again and made certain to be clear so she didn't offend him unless she intended to. "That is not me saying your feelings regarding this are invalid, it's just my opinion on the problem itself." She ran a firm hand through her short cropped hair and carefully stretched herself within the boundaries she'd found with her injuries. She'd speak with him if she had to, but she wasn't going to get too personal with it since she didn't trust this man. Still...something about the situation brought about in instinct in her that was impossible to ignore.

She stared at Isao for a long while, considering her feelings and what her instinct was telling her. She supposed he'd earned this much from her since he'd done as she'd asked - for the most part - so far. So she shifted carefully up next to him and touched his arm lightly to gain his full attention then as her eyes met his she gave him a little piece of herself that he had earned. "Don't share it with others, but you can call me Evanna. It's my first name." She gave him a tired half smile before dropping her hand away from him and moving backwards carefully until she could rest against the far wall again where she was comfortable.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 25, 2021, 12:33:12 PM
As he settled back into the bed, Isao rested a hand on his chest. Hearing that Rose was willing to help him find some grounding in order to get over whatever it was that he feared, he turned to her briefly. "I would appreciate that." It was so odd that she distanced herself from him and yet she seemed to want to help him in some ways. Did something happen that would make her be this way?

He knew she wasn't overly eager to be stuck with him for a few days, but perhaps it qiuld ease some tension between them. For now, he kept himself in place as he was scolded about taking it easy before the stitches came out. "Sorry." He let her go on about what the dreams could have been caused by, though he doubted some of them were caused by his transformations.

He turned his head again when she touched his arm. He gave her a somewhat puzzled look when she gave him her real name. After a moment, he recalled that she would give him her proper name when she felt that he earned it. "That's a beautiful name," he said. Taking a deep breath, he closed his eyes. "I... I'm not sure if I can stay up long enough to try and explain what dreams I sometimes have."
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on January 27, 2021, 10:31:15 PM
Evanna watched her companion closely as he drifted in and out of consciousness from his exhaustion caused by both his injuries and his transformation. She slowly moved back next to him and grabbed a bit of moss growing outside the inn and returned back to him to use it to clean his face and neck to help make him more comfortable. She started humming lowly a healing song to help lull him to rest; her voice soft and melodic as she worked.

"Be easy and rest,  your work here is done for the moment. Sleep will aide in your healing and I will remain by your side until you wake are are well." She may not appreciate having to be there with him, but things were as they were so she would manage for however long she had to remain. It didn't help that this man made her nightmares return with a vicious wrath that she often couldn't shake easily. Looks like she wouldn't be sleeping any time soon.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on January 28, 2021, 09:52:49 AM
Feeling the moss on his dace and neck, Isao finally drifted off to sleep... only to be troubled by his dream.

He was running through some unknown city with strange buildings. Gunshots were ringing through the air as he barged his way through the doors, only to find a woman lying in a pool of blood. He sobbed, apologized over and over, and picked her up to cradle in his arms. He looked down, seeing Evanna in his arms.

Was this her? Her hair was longer and she looked so...

He jolted as he awoke, gasping softly as he opened his eyes. Another quick glance around the room indicated that he was still in the inn, and Evanna was against the wall. Why did he keep having these dreams? And why has Evanna suddenly begun to appear in them?
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on February 08, 2021, 03:39:18 PM
Evanna watched the man next to her carefully and quietly until finally he succumbed to sleep. She herself was exhausted and rested a bit only to be plagued by nightmares of betrayal and pain and bloodshed along with a heartbreak so deep there seemed no end to it but with her own death. She startled awake, alarmed and quickly worked to get her heartrate under control; using the strength of the distant Gif to steady herself as she felt his alarm and worry for her and reached to comfort him. That horrible nightmare again, she wondered if it was something she'd forgotten from before...Perhaps, those days hadn't been the best and her father wasn't exactly beyond using torture to get his children to listen and do what he wanted. She shook her head; knowing she'd die before becoming that dying bird in its gilded cage ever again.

She noticed Isao beginning to stir as well and he also seemed to be having a nightmare. Grabbing some more moss she quickly rinsed it with the rain from outside and placed it on his head to cool the fever there, hoping he wasn't getting an infection. She didn't want to remain longer than she had to, but an infection would force her to do just that. He'd helped save the children, so she couldn't just abandon him it went against everything she stood for. Focusing instead on her task, she spoke soft words in her native language to try and soothe his clearly frazzled nerves. "Breathe easy, male, no harm will find you here. You're safe, the nightmare is finished." She hummed quietly to him, the song an ancient lullaby taught to her by her grandmother ages ago. It had always soothed her, so perhaps it would do the same for him. She wasn't a cruel female, after all.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on February 08, 2021, 03:59:10 PM
Hearing soothing words and humming, Isao began to calm himself as he glanced up at Evanna. He soon took deep breaths as she dabbed the moss on his forehead. "I... I hate having the nightmares," he said, clearly sounding shaken. "It's like I know where I am, but I don't recognize where I am at all. They usually in pain and suffering." He brought his gaze up to meet hers. "That is not strange, is it?" There had to be some explanation for them. And there had to be one for Evanna suddenly popping up in his dreams. 

He felt so... odd. As he didn't want to say much more for fear that Evanna would find him more awkward than what he was.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on February 11, 2021, 02:13:18 PM
Evanna took several deep breaths before continuing her quiet humming and soothing words even as her companion finally seemed to focus back on her and the here and now; asking about nightmares. She only gave him a sad smile, taking strength from Gif where he rested far away. "Nightmares are often our mind's way of telling us something important we have forgotten or left unresolved. Sometimes they tell us of the person we were in a previous life so we do not repeat those mistakes. I would take that to heart and not fight so much to remember if pain is what it gives you." Because anything that hurt so badly as her nightmares did wasn't something she ever wanted to remember or repeat in the here and now.

It was normal to not know where one was if it was a dream of who they were before, but she didn't need him to know she had the nightmares too; especially as it was the reason - one of them - she was so wary of him. She disliked him, true, but more that she felt threatened in his presence as if her life were always in danger and she hated that feeling. Taking another deep breath, she offered him the cool moss to wipe his face with so she could stop doing so now that he was awake. "Here, it'll help cool you off. Don't try and sit up it'll hurt your injuries, just lay where you are and focus on breathing. You have a strong heartbeat, so follow that to steady yourself. You're safe here, after all, I owe  you enough not to let harm befall you while under my care."

She finally removed herself from his side and looked out the window at the raging storm beyond. She'd rather be out in it with Gif than stuck inside like there where she felt so trapped but her sense of honor wouldn't allow for it while this male was still so injured. She'd wait him out, then she'd leave. It wouldn't be too long considering how quickly Oni healed.  He'd be fine, then things could go back to how they were before. It was much easier to deal with him through letters than in person, at least then he didn't make her feel as if here life were constantly in danger. How she hated the nightmares.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on February 11, 2021, 05:26:15 PM
As Isao cast his eyes down, he listened to what Evanna had to say and nodded. He wasn't sure what mistakes he shouldn't repeat if it were true. All he knew was that he shared enough of what he saw in his dreams, and perhaps once they were more comfortable with each other, he would be more open about it. He knew she didn't exactly like him, but she seemed to have softened some since the incident with the slavers.

He took the cool moss and gently moved it around his face and neck. Nodding, he tried his best to focused on his heartbeat and breathing. The storm outside seemed to distract him some as Evanna moved away from his side. It would likely be another day or two before he recovered enough to be able to move about on his own and return home. Though, a part of him was concerned for Evanna.

What if he inadvertently put her in harm's way? Was that what his nightmare was telling him?
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on February 13, 2021, 01:24:33 PM
Evanna watched the storm raging outside quietly, green eyes glowing slightly in reflection of the storm's power. The raindrops seemed to chase her fingertips on the windows as if begging for her to come out and join them in delighting in the storm overhead. She wanted to, badly so, but with someone to watch over she didn't dare to give into the screaming inside her that begged to be out there in her element. It would be alright, it wasn't the first time she'd denied herself something her very being wanted like this.

She still felt Isao's presence nearby and knew he was struggling internally with whatever his nightmare had shown him. It was up to him to figure out what his mind was trying to tell him, she had no way to help him that she was willing to give. The silence wasn't uncomfortable at least, so that was something, but she had to wonder how they were going to handle each other in the coming days. He was still way too attached to her and she'd rather forget he existed if she could. Still, for now it couldn't be helped so she would have to deal with it.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on February 15, 2021, 07:12:08 PM
He turned to the storm outside. As he moved the cool moss over him, Isao sensed that Evanna would rather be in the thick of it than stuck in an inn with him. And he felt that it was his fault. What would their relationship be like if he wasn't so awkward around her? It was something he mulled over for a moment before finally turning to Evanna again. He could see it in her eyes that she was saddened by the fact that she couldn't be out there with her crew.

"Um..." he started, thinking over his next words carefully. "I haven't said this yet, but you fought beautifully." While he was far from his old charming self, he hoped that it was a start despite how stupid he must ave sounded just now.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on February 17, 2021, 01:16:46 PM
Evanna blinked slowly as she heard Isao speaking from behind her. After mentally bracing herself to deal with him she turned and realized the man had just accidently stumbled across an acceptable compliment. She rolled her eyes at herself before turning to deal with him. "No you haven't said so, but thank you for the compliment. A lady does like to know she's appreciate for more than how she looks, after all."

Her words were cool but still politely pleased and she gave him a tiny smile before turning back towards the window. She was beginning to physically ache from the separation from Gif as usually they weren't so far apart for longer than a few hours. She'd been through worse, but it was grating on her a bit. She sighed and tried again without looking at the man that confounded her so with his need to be near her.

Surely if his nightmares were anywhere near like her own were it was best to stay well away from each other, so why do otherwise? Because he found her attractive perhaps but that really was ridiculous. Regardless it didn't change her opinion of him. She told him so. "I don't understand you, you know. You insist on knowing me but at the same time you know I'm uncomfortable around you. Awkwardness aside, why go through so much trouble? It doesn't seem worth it to me."

She wasn't being mean, more that she honestly didn't understand and was honestly trying to. Turning to him, she gave him the full weight of her starlit sparked green eyes and waited to see if he'd tell her the truth or just give her another 'just because' answer. Dreams said to stay away from each other for risk of death and pain, so why bother?
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on February 17, 2021, 08:28:16 PM
Isao slowly shifted to where he could sit up without risking his stitches coming out. "Well, it's important to let a woman know that there is more to her than her beauty." As much as he knee to stay away, he just... couldn't. It was like there was a risk getting too close to her, but the risk seemed worth it. When asked why he continued to pursue getting to know her, he sighed.

"Honestly, I don't know. There's just someyhing about you. I don't know what it is. But it's like... I don't know how to explain it." He wasn't about to tell her that he felt that they were supposed to be together. No need to make things more awkward than they already were. "There's just something about your aura..."
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on March 10, 2021, 02:51:40 PM
Evanna watched him closely and with a serious expression on her face as he explained why he just wouldn't leave her alone considering the nightmares associated with doing so. He was such a strange man, then again he had been human once so maybe that was it. She'd never been human, having been born fae so the rules she lived by were much different than his even though he now was an Oni.

She tilted her head to the side when he made a comment about her aura and she snorted lowly in faint amusement as that sounded like something a friend of her's had once said to her. Although Mira had told her she had the aura of an old soul; something she'd found but interesting and amusing. She figured that might be similar to what Isao was saying to her now. Still, she would rather he stay away, the nightmares weren't so bad that way.

She considered him for a long moment before finally settling on just being honest with him as she always tried to be with others and herself. "First off, thank you for the compliment once more, I do appreciate it since I'm more often just seen for being a pretty face than an actual individual. Still, not to offend you as that is not my intention but...wanting to stick around despite the dangers seems...selfish to me somehow."

She looked thoughtful for a long moment, eyes distant and lonely, before she refocused back on her companion. "Perhaps it's the difference in your being born human, I don't know. It's just confusing to me that anything could be worth the nightmares. They are pain and death and sorrow and a loss so deep and intense it often hurts to breathe. " It was really the most she'd spoken about the nightmares she herself had and indicated just how similar to Isao's they were.

Even thinking about it too long caused flashes to float before her eyes and she had to shake her head hard to clear it. She wouldn't fall to that darkness again. When finally she regained control of herself, she made certain to cover herself. "Sorry, I'm only trying to understand since we are very different. Differences give strengths, so I'm naturally curious. Feel free not to answer if it makes you uncomfortable." At least it gave something to pass the time and ignore the knawing need she had to go out into the storm.
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: PendragonXeno94 on March 25, 2021, 09:17:39 PM
He sighed. "Maybe it is selfish, but..." Damn it all, he had to know! "But perhaps it's also because I was born human. Perhaps it's also because I have never been one to shy away from danger. Thay always worried my parents."

As she seemed to speak cryptically of her own nightmares, he noted that hers sounded similar to his. Perhaps the reason behind them was to warn them not to make the same mistakes. It was still unknown to him. He sighed to himself, sinking into the bed as the storm continued on outside.

"It's hard to say..." wad all he could think of. Gods, how could he feel so distracted?
Title: Re: The Spy[m]aster
Post by: Kei on April 04, 2021, 08:50:06 PM
Evanna tilted her head curiously at the words of her companion. He sounded frustrated, but she understood his choices in a way. She didn't agree with him - her desire to have anything to do with him proved that - but that didn't mean his opinion wasn't also valid. She watched him with a critical eye as he settled back into bed, assessing him quietly to be certain his moving about hadn't ruined any of her hard work. When it seemed her work had held, she nodded to herself and settled back against a wall.

She looked out the window for another moment at the raging storm before pulling her focus back to her temporary companion. "I suppose that makes sense. I don't agree with the sentiment, but each of us is entitle to our own opinion. Thank you for explaining it to me." Green eyes narrowed at Isao for a moment before she sighed and just outright asked what she wanted. "You seem...distracted. May I know why or is it something you'd rather not share?"  It was safe ground and gave her something besides the storm to focus on.