Jump to content
Hida Jitenno

Dark Winter in the North

Recommended Posts

As you can see, it is made of red jade, in shape of a dragon's claw, about as long as an index finger.  I found it in an abandoned shrine in the domain of the enemy during the war.  At one point, when an oni attacked me, a fire kami seemed to appear and protect me.  So I think there must be an invocation embedded in the stone, but I have not divined how to unlock it yet.  My father was studying the properties of jade when he was killed so I think this is somehow connected to him.  Perhaps his ghost even led me to it.  With all due respect to my esteemed Crab, I believe the signal expertise of the Isawa may avail us in this matter."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Itto then mets out a chuckle.

”I see, I am afraid I was completely at a loss about that one.”

he bowed to Kamaitachi.

He then turned his attention towards the red jade pendant.

”Interesting... Have you requested an audience with the esteemed Masters?”

he then asked the monk, stroking his chin under his mask, which covered the lower half of his face. 

It was a typical Scorpion mask, shaped like that of a Tengu’s face, with a mouth hole for the male to speak clearly and even eat and drink with the mask on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jinyo looks around to ensure the trio is at least theoretically out of earshot of other revelers. 

"We were just discussing that when you came by.  I was of the mind that our Phoenix host might be inclined to meet somewhere less formal; perhaps an apricot tree in one of the gardens?  But my esteemed Crab friend here suggests we go straight to the Isawa and request a more formal meeting.  Have you any thoughts on the matter?  My upbringing makes me ill-suited for courtly graces though I'm also for discretion in this matter.  The forces of shadow have eyes and ears everywhere, as I'm sure you most definitely are aware."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

A bit of quiet surprise moves through the main area. A mid-20s woman walks into the terrace, midnight-black kimono with a simple yari mon patterned in red down her right arm. She wears three layers, suggesting she is lower-ranking than many in attendance, yet wealthy enough not to wear merely two as a high-placed servant would, and she has no family or clan mon either. Her hair is pulled up into a warrior's topknot, but she carries no short blade to suggest her status as a samurai.

In short, the hubbub seems to be centered around her contradictory appearance.

 

Kamaitachi, you recognize her as the second-in-command of the Hida's Legion vanguard during the war: Suda Ayaka. She led troops into the densest fighting, the most deadly situations. If there was an embodiment of the "tip of the spear" it is her. However, after the War she did not choose to join the Crab when offered fealty and disappeared from the pages of history as far as you know. It's unlikely anyone outside of the vanguard or other heavily-engaged units would recognize her in a non-armored situation. Her favored weapon was always the yari.

Edited by Hida Jitenno

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Kamaitachi immediately puts down her glass, walks over to the woman and bows deeply, despite her own apparently higher status.

"What an unexpected honor to meet you, here of all places, Yari-Sama. Many of our brothers and sisters feared what might have happened to you.
Would you like to join us over there? I am sure my companions would be happy to make your acquaintance."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Several courtiers snap open fans in surprise, the whisper growing more intense.

For her part, Ayaka gives a characteristic smirk, one Kamaitachi would recognize as her "pre-battle chutzpah," and bows back. "Kamaitachi-san! What a surprise to see you so far north. But please, 'Ayaka,' between battle sisters, is more than enough for me." She gestures for you to lead the way. Now that you get a better look at her face, you see two light scars, one running over her right eye and one parallel down her temple right beside it. Her eye itself is fine - it looks like the cuts must not have been deep. This is new since the war.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jinyo stands, sake cup still in hand.  "I, too, fought beside the Crab.  But I know of the Seven Spears only by reputation."  He places his cup down, then encloses his right fist inside the left, offering the standard salute of the Togashi Order while bowing slightly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Ayaka returns the bow in kind. As she does, you see a tattoo on each inner forearm: a simple three-tier temple on her left arm and a yari on her right. The tattoos look like they were done within the last month or so. "Suda Ayaka, formerly a taisa of the Legion's vanguard," she says, to explain knowing Kamaitachi.

 

TN1 Earth/Theology would reveal the meaning of the tattoos.

Edited by Hida Jitenno

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Itto had bowed to the newcomer as she came.

”Greetings, Suda-San. I have heard of you through my comrade in arms. It is an honour to be able to meet you in person.”

Itto said, executing a bow.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

After a few moments of concentration Jinyo smiles at Ayaka approvingly, "I admire the work of your tattoos.  I see you look to Bishamon for strength.  We need such assistance in these dark times for I do not think we've seen the last of our foe."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Itto nods at the female as he smiled.

”Indeed. I remember many a time when I was on the frontlines of the war, that I had to pray to Bishamon for strength. And a benevolent god he is, for he always answered my prayers and granted me strength.”

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ayaka inclines her head, then tucks her thumbs into her obi. "Yes, reliance on the Fortune of Strength is essential in time of war. The question remains whether he can be remember as highly during the new peace. So, Kuni-san, who are your friends?" She gestures to the two who didn't introduce themselves.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jinyo laughs.  "What are names really, in this dusty world of illusion?  But if it's a name you must have of me, I go by Togashi Jinyo, of the High House of Light.  We must certainly talk more of your tattoos.  I admire the work.  Please join our small group here.  It seems your arrival has ruffled feathers, and not just those of the Phoenix."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Nice t-," she clears her throat, "an honor to meet you," Ayaka finishes, the words sounding rote and trained rather than her natural greeting. She throws a glance back over her shoulder to the main terrace, then turns back. "Yes, so it seems. I can spare a moment for friends, but I must keep it short."

She turns her arms over to show her tattoos to Jinyo more. "Yes, they are relatively fresh still, though I'm sure your trained eye already caught that. New paths in life, new symbols of that path."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Jinyo looks at the tattoos more closely, clearly admiring the work.  "As they say, a journey of 10,000 ri starts with the first step.  And of course the Way which we call the Way is not the eternal Way.  Whatever path one chooses, enlightenment is possible."

Edited by Masakiyo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...