[Fate RP] Romance of the Three Kingdoms: CE184

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Re: [Fate RP] Romance of the Three Kingdoms: CE184

Postby Kivutar » Wed Mar 06, 2019 8:30 pm

Dewang stares at the newcomer in confusion. This is no mere beggar, he can tell. Is it who he thinks it is? Impossible, surely.

"New god of death?" he hears his own voice say.
  • 2

Then the LORD said to me, "Go again, love a woman who is loved by her husband, yet an adulteress, even as the LORD loves the sons of Israel, though they turn to other gods and love raisin cakes."

Hosea 3:1
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Re: [Fate RP] Romance of the Three Kingdoms: CE184

Postby Scarik » Wed Mar 06, 2019 10:16 pm

Baozi

The older man prays quietly in traditional style. He chants his mantras and blessings as one would to any deity for several more minutes before invoking the goddess herself.

"Oh Lady Senlin, great queen of the dark wood, healer of the sick and ruiner of the false, bestow your wisdom on this insignificant servant so that he might render judgement in this life according to your divine mercy."


Dewang

"Ho oh!" the man laughs, "No, nothing like that. I am a traveler and a friend to the just and the merciful."

He changes how he is sat upon the low wall and the snake and the turtle both come up under him so that he can rest his bare feet on their backs.

"But enough about me, what brings you here to this forgotten place? You must be foreign to not know that the people here now pray to Senlin Gui to protect them in the afterlife."
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Re: [Fate RP] Romance of the Three Kingdoms: CE184

Postby CarrieVS » Wed Mar 06, 2019 11:04 pm

That sounds like what a magistrate might pray for, if he was sincere about his job. But it's not much to go on to form an opinion of the man, except that it seems likely this is indeed the head of the Hui family.

Baozi stares at the fish pond a moment longer, then at the nearest of the three gardeners, as though weighing up the safety of venturing closer. He yawns, and pads away from the main shrine, looking for an opportunity to slip out of this room into the north wing.
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The Dungeon Master wrote:Those who don't want to be baptised, make a dexterity saving throw.
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Re: [Fate RP] Romance of the Three Kingdoms: CE184

Postby Kivutar » Wed Mar 06, 2019 11:24 pm

Dewang kneels hastily.

"I am honoured to be in your presence, Sir," he says. "How can I serve your purposes?"
  • 2

Then the LORD said to me, "Go again, love a woman who is loved by her husband, yet an adulteress, even as the LORD loves the sons of Israel, though they turn to other gods and love raisin cakes."

Hosea 3:1
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Re: [Fate RP] Romance of the Three Kingdoms: CE184

Postby Scarik » Thu Mar 07, 2019 4:53 am

Baozi

His chance comes quickly when a devilishly handsome young man in rich robes sweeps into the shrine accompanied by a woman of such stunning beauty that even the cat spirit stops for a moment before dashing past them into the high family wing.

The pair are accompanied by a dozen servants and they seem to have excellent timing as they come to stand by the older man just as he has finished his prayers.

"Father," the man says, "I trust your devotions are satisfactory to the goddess?" The woman says nothing though her eyes betray her alertness.

"Be still that arrogant tongue, Jiao," father rebukes his son. "Lady Senlin may indulge you and tolerate such familiarity but you will do well to remember whose house this is and who it was that raised you to such prominence."

Jiao does not seem very affected but he bows and apologizes anyway.


Dewang

The god nods in approval, "Well mannered and well educated, I see. And I can sense a great devotion and understanding of the Tao within you, Zhiteng."

Xuanwu stands up then and for a moment puts his full weight on his animal companions, who bear it without a sound, before he steps forward. As he does his demeanor grows more intense and his appearance more profound. The stick in his hand grows and widens until it is a strong staff fit for a warrior-monk and his clothes, while still un adorned improve in quality beyond any cloth not worn by an emperor.

"This is a dark time, when the Mandate of Heaven falls from the grip of its bearer, and is left to the deeds of the mundane and the ambitious. Sorcerer Jue betrayed the trust of the Yellow Emperor and allowed wickedness to grow like bamboo in his heart. Now all the world will suffer a full cycle* of war and none can know who will prevail."

He stops and appraises the prostrate magicians before him once more.

"The hearts of your students sing for you, their faith is strong and pure. There is no greater proof of a man's goodness than the love of his charges. No law or custom demands that you remain in this place or that you risk yourself for those who are missing. That you do will see you through many terrible days to come."

Then, as suddenly as he appeared, Beidi, the Northern Emperor, vanishes before their eyes. The snake and the turtle, however, remain.

"Beware the Lin Kuei," the snake hisses, "They will not forgive you lightly."

"But they are devout," the turtle croaks, "and they will attend their goddess on the new moon."

*60 years
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Re: [Fate RP] Romance of the Three Kingdoms: CE184

Postby Kivutar » Thu Mar 07, 2019 9:49 pm

Dewang and his clerks stay in place, awestruck, for several minutes. Eventually, they get up and look at each other, none of them saying a word, and all understanding.

Before they leave, they collect the bones of the unfortunate priests and attempt to lay them with more dignity.
  • 2

Then the LORD said to me, "Go again, love a woman who is loved by her husband, yet an adulteress, even as the LORD loves the sons of Israel, though they turn to other gods and love raisin cakes."

Hosea 3:1
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Re: [Fate RP] Romance of the Three Kingdoms: CE184

Postby CarrieVS » Thu Mar 07, 2019 10:41 pm

Baozi begins to dash for the door as it opens, but on seeing who is entering the shrine room he stops in his tracks an instant, and makes a split-second decision. Better to follow the twins than to poke about empty rooms.

He turns on his tail and bolts in the opposite direction to that he had been going, as though startled by the approaching crowd of people. He halts, bristling, tail straight out, still feigning fear, next to the wall, and watches the conversation between the magistrate and his son.
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The Dungeon Master wrote:Those who don't want to be baptised, make a dexterity saving throw.
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Re: [Fate RP] Romance of the Three Kingdoms: CE184

Postby CarrieVS » Wed Mar 13, 2019 1:50 am

That was a bad move. The cat is now too much of an intrusion to be tolerated and some of the servants employ their brooms to chase it out. Baozi avoids the blows easily enough and once they have herded him to an outside door and sent him dashing out into the garden they leave him be, but he has blown his chance of seeing the family rooms.

He darts under a bush and turns to look back and survey the situation. He still might be able to discover something useful from the grounds - or perhaps even a way back inside. Nothing catches his eye, though. Except a building which appears to be a grain store, standing not too far from the doors where he was ejected.

All granaries are havens for rodents and it doesn't take too long to stalk and pounce on a fat mouse. The cat tastes blood and he has to resist the urge to eat his prey now. Instead, he carries it back towards the house: a good cat, a lucky gold cat sent as a mild favour from heaven to protect their stores. He lays his offering down and sits licking his paws and restraining the cat-spirit's urge to eat the meat. After a while his patience is rewarded by a servant returning to the house by that door.

She sees the mouse first, reacting with initial disgust, and then the cat. When she looks at him, Baozi raises his right paw for a moment to the level of his head, in such a way that he might just have been scratching his ear or batting away a tiny insect - but that it also looks very like a lucky cat beckoning good fortune to the house. She looks startled, but smiles, and although she disappears into the house she comes back a few minutes later with another woman - and some fish. Baozi stands up with his tail straight in the air and an excited "Mao." They watch him eat, purring, although when one bends down to touch him he backs away just beyond her reach.

He's been taking note of the comings and goings as he's sat there, and it starts to seem odd that with all the bustle across this huge complex no-one comes or goes to the pagoda that stands in the north-east corner.

He gets up with a yawn and saunters off vaguely in that direction, taking care to nose around in the gardens' plants and take a roundabout route. It's obvious before he gets too close that the pagoda is heavily guarded. The only windows are high, and the door is shut and flanked by armed men. Baozi flops down in a patch of sun with a good view of the door and pretends to doze while keeping a watch on the building.

There seem to be a dozen guards, stationed around the door, at posts to either side of the building, and patrolling its perimeter. Some with crossbows, some with halberds, all with heavier armour than the soldiers around the walls of the compound. There is a valuable secret in there for sure: but how to make certain of what?

His chance comes when a woman passes a short distance from him: the first person to approach the pagoda so far. She is bearing a tray and the cat's sensitive nose detects both cheese and tea. He jumps up, raising his tail in greeting and giving her a friendly, pleading mao. She is a little too well dressed to be a servant - some more trusted employee or lesser family member, perhaps? Whatever she is, he's misjudged his assault, or else she simply doesn't like cats. She glares, but her tray is heavy and awkward and she can't shoo him away without losing her balance, and Baozi follows close on her heels, still putting up a show of begging for the food he can smell.

One of the guards comes to the lady's assistance and aims a blow at the cat with the butt of his halberd as another opens the door to let her in. Baozi dodges easily but is unable to slip through the opening at the same time. Nonetheless, he manages to glimpse the interior: nothing on the ground floor but stairs: up, and down to what must be the tomb. The lady goes upward, and Baozi darts away from the pagoda. He turns once out of reach and hisses defiance, but again he has missed his chance. Still, food - and at least enough for two to judge by the weight of the tray - being brought into an excessively guarded outbuilding which no servants may approach is almost conclusive.

He trots back towards the southern gate where he came in, and leaves with no more difficulty. It takes a little while to travel back through the city to their camp, but it's uneventful.
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The Dungeon Master wrote:Those who don't want to be baptised, make a dexterity saving throw.
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