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Tenkai Matsumoto

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Tenkai Matsumoto last won the day on August 18 2019

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About Tenkai Matsumoto

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  1. “No!!!” Tenkai watched as Asil made his bold attempt to strike down the weakened daemon, only to be impaled on its hellblade. After most of their group had been slaughtered by the Blackened Knight, Tenkai had resolved to prevent any further losses and send the beast screaming back into the Warp. But seeing another one of his comrades cut down was a painful blow, carrying with it the bitter sting of failure. It was a feeling he knew all to well, even in the days long before he joined the Order, before he even left his homeworld. There was a time when that biting edge would cut off a piece of him every time it struck, each successive failure chipping away his spirit and adding to his burden. No longer. Now every loss, every sacrifice made by those who fought alongside him and put their trust in him burned in a furnace of vengeful fury. As deleterious as the effects of revenge could be on ones karma, drawing them further down the Path of Asura, it was undeniably a powerful resource in times of desperation. It was a font of strength that Tenkai no longer hesitated to draw from when time came, and now was that time. Tenkai drew his sword back into a sha no kamae, a tail guard parallel to the ground as he focused his ki. The magitek circuitry in Muramasa’s hilt came to life in response to this abrupt surge in power. The monk and the sword’s combined aura rose from them like vapors as arcs of energy sparked to life and grounded themselves to the floor. He deepened the stance, turning his hips to the right until the sword was behind his back, an exaggerated posture that had far too many openings and impracticalities to be a functional guard. But it wasn’t a guard. Tenkai was simply winding up. Up until now, all they had managed to do was chip the daemon’s armor, riddle it with holes, small cuts and leave it hamstrung. Though this had clearly worn down the monster, such debilitations were only worrying cuts and flesh wounds to the daemonic champions of Khorne. It would not stop, carried forward by its unrelenting bloodthirst, so long as it could still move and function. The only way to put down these berserkers was with a decisive killing blow. And thanks to the relentless assault of Inquisitor Alexa and the Custodes, dealing such a blow was now possible. Tenkai made no move to advance. There would be no need to come within measure, for the daemon was already within measure. With the last of his strength, Asil managed to keep the daemon’s blade in place so that even if it gained the courage to betray its own nature and flee from Tenkai’s strike, he would not be able to do so. And though Tenkai would not end up hitting Asil, it was clear that the Greatsword’s fate was sealed. There was no way the daemon could use that against him now. I have HAD IT with you! “Zetsu...!!!” Having mustered up the strength, Tenkai swiftly raised the blade up from his exaggerated posture, transitioning into a high guard and cutting downward decisively in a single beat. “...Itto Ryodan!” 絶・一刀両断 Zetsu Itto Ryodan (Absolute One-Stroke Bisection) The sheer force of the ki released from Tenkai’s strike displaced a massive amount of air in the shape of a blade beam that streaked over the ground on a direct course with the daemon. It was similar to the attack Tenkai had used before, except far more condensed and far taller than the daemon. The wave blade would cut the Blackened Knight completely down the middle, armor and all, and still possess enough force to continue traveling down the corridor until it collided with part of the ship, dealing collateral damage to its cursed hull and whatever awaited in the room ahead.
  2. Tenkai was waiting outside the room, arms folded, not within earshot of the meeting itself but close enough to know when it had ended. As soon as he saw their guest being escorted out by the Custodes, he knew their business had concluded. Based on the way Ana was bantering with her escort, one would almost think that things had gone relatively smoothly. But that simply wasn’t the way body language worked, and Tenkai was a good enough reader of people to know that he outcome of this meeting was probably less than beneficial. He did not change his position as the broker passed by, paying no more than a passing one-eyed glance as the Custodes led her out of the Komturie. Tenkai hadn’t stepped two feet into the door of James’ office before his gauntlet communicator started beeping. It seemed like the Master Knight had wasted no time putting out an all-points bulletin after the meeting had concluded. This was no surprise, of course. James was a careful one, even when subterfuge was unlikely. One had to be that cautious when dealing with the sort of batters that the Order dealt with. There were always infiltrators seeking to compromise their operations. Switching off the alert with a push of a hard light terminal key, Tenkai relaxed his arm at his side and regarded James with his single eye. ”I take it that went well. You rang?” @Fierach
  3. They call him Panda on a platform called Discord.
    Bringin more destruction than a new world war.
     

    But on Valucre anyone will tell ya.

    He ain't no one trick pony livin' in a celler.

     

    His name's a Tenkai, the badass.

    And if you wanna go he'll give it to ya deadass.

     

    He'll draw his katana blade and cut you down.

    and the last thing you'll see is that serious frown.

     

    all you gotta do is give him some sass.

    He'll drop on you screamin' "FEAR MY MASS"

     

    Crushin' your windpipe with a fuzzy hug.

    Rollin' over and you're flat as a rug.

  4. Ren, is it?, thought Tenkai. A fairly simple name. Had it been short for a much longer given or chosen name? Would the spirit have even remembered, were it so? None of that mattered now. They had given their proper introductions, and Ren was in no mood to tarry. Eager to sate his worldly desire for combat, the spirit had made the first move as he sought to pressure the monk into attacking. Tenkai noted that his opponent was left-handed, something that could complicate matters of measure versus his own right-leading posture. Despite what could have been centuries of undeath, Ren’s positioning and footwork were still careful and calculated. This was no mere ghost whose warrior spirit was ground away by his own torment. Tenkai could tell that Ren fought as if he still lived and breathed. As the ghost suddenly half-stepped forward and moved to change his posture, Tenkai made a swift and sudden gathering step with his leading right foot, landing on the ball of his foot as he straightened the angle of his sword and reached out with his arms in order to poke Ren in his right elbow. @Spooky Mittens
  5. Tenkai's distraction had worked far better than he could have anticipated. With the daemon's attention focused on the monk, Guardian Drachenberg was given the opening needed to deliver a crippling blow. The halberd jammed into its heel would make it harder to move and turn on a dime, which is exactly what was needed in order to outmaneuver the beast. For her efforts, Lena had been repaid with a violent backhand, keeping her from pressing the advantage further. But she wouldn't need to. Her actions were not in vain, for the time the daemon had wasted switching its attention once more to an entirely different source of ire had taken its mind off of the one who had originally snatched it in the first place. It had made a grave mistake, for the brief moment it had been distracted by the Guardian was like an eternity for Tenkai to work with, closing the distance from the rear on the side near the Herald's crippled leg. Though that backhand had surely given it the satisfaction of crumpling Lena's form, it had also given Tenkai an unloaded and outstretched limb well within his measure. As if without warning, a flash of steel so bright and so brief that it could scar the very air shot out as Tenkai took full advantage of the opening, cutting the daemon's arm right at the elbow. Oh, did Tenkai love how much the warriors of Khorne were such slaves to their own aversion to showing weakness and cowardice that they so brazenly wore armor that would show off their "blessed" physique, corded muscles made of fibers like spun iron. Though their gauntlets and breastplates could protect them from blows and bear the mark of their god, their exposed biceps and elbows were prime targets. Against an ordinary swordsman with an ordinary sword, armor was a trivial thing to a Bloodletter, let alone a Herald of Khorne. But Tenkai was no ordinary swordsman, nor Muramasa an ordinary sword. Landing that strike earlier had managed to achieve two things. It left the daemon feeling overconfident in its own gifts, knowing that the blades of its enemies could not pierce its hide. However, it also gave Tenkai a fairly good idea of the thickness and toughness of the daemon's flesh, with his hands honed by years of training and test-cutting to understand just what kind of force and angle was needed to drive his blade through it. Enemies who relied on their armor-like skin did not last long against Tenkai so long as he was able to land a few hits to get used to the resistance. That was why this time around, there was no getting stuck half-way through the muscle or stopped by bone. Tenkai's Muramasa would end up cleaving straight through the limb in a single clean stroke, severing it at the elbow and leaving it disarmed. And while simply disarming a Herald of Khorne was in no way a finishing blow, it would be more than enough to turn the tables on the creature and overwhelm it.
  6. The matter of Tenkai being a monk was a confusing one indeed, both true and yet in several ways not quite accurate. He certainly looked the part, at least as far as his manner of dress, his adherence to Buddhism and other aesthetic evidence. Indeed, he had been instructed alongside his brother monks at a Buddhist temple many years ago, long before he ventured off-world to live the life most people knew him from. Yet his chosen path in life had led him in directions that he could not truly follow the strict tenets of a monastic. This was reflected in the fact that he had not shaved his head into a tonsure. Given the manner of death-dealing that invariably followed with being a "professional thorn-in-the-side", Tenkai knew that if he ever was to free himself from the Samsara, it would not be in this life. Thus would his own path to Buddhahood was delayed so that he might do what he could for others to have their chance to go before him. In a strange way, this would make him a "shepherd-like bodhisattva", though Tenkai would never accept such a thought so long as he wielded a sword in violence. To that end, what little she knew of him was perhaps the one thing he came to be known most by. Thus did Tenkai seem far more like a samurai than a monk, as much as he denied the former. And yet for as skilled at killing with the sword as he so seemed, if he was truly here to hunt her down in such a way, he had already failed. Brandishing a sword so suddenly in the middle of a casino was a great way to make a mess of things very quickly. After all, Tenkai could no longer benefit from the privilege of anonymity. Ever since he very publicly stood with the Order and the Terrenus military in defense of Last Chance, he was no longer just a random nobody wandering around slaying demons. Hasty actions on his part carried ramifications for both himself and the Order. That said, putting himself out in the open like that was such an amateurish move that it was hard to think that anyone so experienced in combat would ever do something like that. This meant one of two things; either Tenkai was not as good as she had thought, or he wasn't here to kill her. If the truth was the latter, then why exactly was he here? Tenkai turned to her as she spoke. If he had recognized her at all beneath that glamour, he certainly didn't show it. She may as well have been a stranger to him, which was not to say they were ever truly familiar back in the day. As he turned his head to her, however, it would be clear that time had not been kind to the monk. She had remembered that he was a monk and good with a sword, but part of what had made him such a "goody gumdrop" was how warm and friendly he had been, almost annoyingly peaceful and optimistic when he wasn't fighting. After all, how else would such a moniker enter her head upon the sight of him? Yet something had clearly changed about Tenkai, and it wasn't just the fact that he was very clearly missing his right eye. The eye that remained was calm yet scrutinizing, wary but not apprehensive. It was a look of healthy suspicion, one that she would feel far more familiar with than a cloyingly bright-eyed gaze and far more comfortable than a cocksure ogling. "I guess I'm in luck," he said plainly with the slightest of smiles and nods. "Let's hope that bodes well for this game." Little did she know, Tenkai didn't have to play the uncultured traveler to pull this off. Though he was not entirely unaware of how certain games worked, his experience with them was actually lacking. He understood a bit of how blackjack worked, but his acquaintance was clearly the more experienced of the two, and he considered anything she wished to impart on him valuable information. All good covers were at least in some way rooted in an honest truth. Tenkai listened as Gloria explained the rules briefly, a small nod here and there to show that he understood what she was saying. It seemed that the game was as much as he had pictured, a tenuous balance between luck and skill bolstered by one's aptitude for numbers and probability. Truth be told, a man of Tenkai's skills would probably be far better suited to poker than blackjack, as he was far better at reading tells and gleaning intention from eye movement and facial expressions. Both of them were psykers of some fashion, but Tenkai was no mind-reader or manipulator of probability. Gloria's psionic abilities were likely more robust, though she probably didn't need to use them here. "Mm," Tenkai replied with a small nod. As she gave him the run-down of the rules, the dealer had already set about preparing the game. It seemed like dealing the cards, as was his wont. He dealt the first card to Tenkai, face up. The 9 of Hearts. The next card he dealt to himself, which turned out to be the Jack of Clubs. The dealer dealt Tenkai his second face-up card, this time being the 9 of Diamonds. The dealer's second card was dealt face down. "18," said the dealer, though that much was evident to Tenkai. He may not have been an avid card player, but he could do basic math. Thankfully, the cards he was dealt were not face cards, or else Gloria would have to explain how a "king" counted as a "ten". "Hit, stand or split?" Split? Tenkai understood what hit and stand were, at least from previous knowledge and Gloria's explanation. He had no idea what a "split" was. He'd pause for a moment in case Gloria wanted to provide a bit of information on splitting pairs. Of course, with a number as high as 18, it was probably close enough to 21 to be better used as a pair, and splitting would just require her to bet more chips. That was probably not something she wanted to risk on a newbie like Tenkai. "Stand." The dealer turned his hole card face up. 8 of Diamonds. 18 against 18. The dealer was forced to stand. "18. Push," he said, raking back his bet. It was a tie. Tenkai quirked his brow in amusement. This was actually quite fun. The dealer re-shuffled the deck and started another deal. Tenkai did This time Tenkai's was dealt the 2 of Clubs first. The dealer dealt himself the 10 of Clubs. Tenkai's second card was the 3 of Hearts. Once the hole card was dealt, the dealer spoke. "5. Hit or stand?" he said. The dealer could already tell Tenkai was inexperienced with the game by the way he used none of the common gestures to signal hitting and standing, so he'd continue to provide him with this options. "...Hit." The dealer dealt Tenkai another card. The 8 of Clubs. "13!" Tenkai did not hesitate. "Again." The next card was dealt. The Ace of Hearts. Perhaps that would have been a good time for Gloria to tell Tenkai that the Ace counted as either a 1 or an 11. In this case, it was automatically a 1, as an 11 would have made him go bust. "14! Hit or stand?" Once more, no hesitation. "Hit." 6 of Hearts. A 20. "Stand," said Tenkai almost immediately, waving his hand. The dealer turned over the hole card. 9 of Clubs. A 19 that was forced to stand against Tenkai's 20. He had won the hand. "19. Well played, sir!" said the dealer as he pushed the chips over to Tenkai and Gloria. The monk turned to her. "I guess it did bode well," said Tenkai. "If your good luck hasn't completely rubbed off onto me, would you like to swap in?" @The Usual Suspect
  7. "I never said anyone begged me for it." Tenkai folded his arms, resigning himself to his decision. Despite his companions' displeasure, though only Arthur had managed to make it known, Tenkai wouldn't be dissuaded. Decisions such as these were always within his character to do so, and no influence from the Order would lessen nor bolster it. It was true that out of the lot of them, Tenkai was more or less the only one who was part of a larger collective that should all but disqualify from being considered "self-employed". This implied being bound by a code or a single unifying purpose which may or may not always clearly align with what was truly right or just for a situation. Orders were systems, and systems were often rigid. Tenkai could only imagine that his compatriots here had questions about that, given what he already knew about them. Artanthos had said nothing, but it stood to reason a fallen knight who rightly spurned knightly orders for their inherent corruption would feel similarly. Tenkai could understand the mistrust. After all, he had been the same way before he had joined the order. In some small way, it was still true. Despite it feeling like ages so far, he was relatively new to the Order compared to others, like the eager and hot-blooded Jinsoku. The distrust he felt as a representative of a larger order was the reverse of the distrust he had felt from some upon first joining, feeling he had not "earned his place" among them. Though ultimately respecting James's decision to induct Tenkai, there were still others he had to prove himself to before it was finally settled. It had been like the Vatican all over again, though now Tenkai was not entirely the same person anymore. And yet despite earning that trust, Tenkai still felt the need to keep himself distant. James had been fairly clear that Knights were not bound by oath, united solely by their shared causes, but there was always the lingering thought that he could let himself get too comfortable if he relied that assurance. He still held reservations about how close the Order was with the Imperium of Kadia, and James' penchant for glory-bound heroism clashed with Tenkai's pragmatism. There were even occasions where Tenkai had questioned whether he had done the right thing in choosing to join rather than remaining a ronin much in the same vein as Arthur and Artanthos. For good or for ill, Tenkai had to understand that being part of an Order had given him no small amount of privileges, something he had become fully aware of. He knew that it meant being unable to relate to the struggles he had once gone through and opened himself up to a new kind of scrutiny. Indeed, it was a scrutiny he needed to hold himself to as much as others would him, lest he find himself straying too far from his chosen path. Ultimately, this was the path Tenkai had chosen, and so long as it was he who chose it, he would accept whatever consequence came of it. "Mm. Perhaps not," Tenkai replied. "Not alone, at least." This was not meant to imply that anyone else give up their share for what was a seemingly futile effort. If anything, it was a reminder of why Tenkai ultimately decided to join the Order. It was a reminder of why despite having all of his hope in the goodness of adventurers literally clawed out of him, he still found himself joining with others on quests like these. Because there were some things he just couldn't do alone. Tenkai listened to Arthur and Archibald discuss the matters of their quest while Artanthos set abound his business stabling his mount. Considering the latter, Tenkai couldn't help but spare a thought for Kuroshiro, his old friend that he had parted ways with long before venturing to this world. One of the last vestiges of his rose-tinted halcyon days on Gaia, the monk had left the gentle panda somewhere where he could live out the rest of his days peacefully. The path Tenkai had walked down since then was not one he wished to drag such a creature along with him, lest the suffering that came with it further burdened him with guilt. But now was not the time to be distracted by the past. Archibald was giving them much needed information, and Tenkai felt he at least had some way to contribute. "Portal activity?" Tenkai replied, not so much a question as it was an expression of surprise. Ever since the Order came into possession of the Cornerstone of Space, Tenkai's discussions with the Order's magitek engineers had taught him much in the way of how portals operate. He had thought he had understood enough about them through his experience with the City of Doors, but he had been quite wrong about that. Indeed, portals required a surprisingly large amount of energy compared to their size, a necessary expenditure in order to open them as well as keep them stable. It was for this reason that most portals were temporary or required constant channeling to maintain them. Some portals required alternative means of energy or channeling, as the power required would otherwise tear a mage apart. On top of that, it was never as simple as simply opening a space big enough for one's body to pass through. There were factors that had to be accounted for, such as where the portal was opening to or from, the sheer scope of the space-time they cut across and, most importantly, the power of that which passed through them. "If a portal was opened in Yh'mi that created an energy spike large enough to grab Dr. Heydrich's attention, then this doesn't bode well," said Tenkai. After all, who or what on this world or another would possibly want to enter Yh'mi in such a manner? And yet, perhaps a far more dire implication would be what could be using such a portal to escape Yh'mi? If James' original hypothesis about these lands were true, either possibility was potentially catastrophic. Nevertheless, there was no need for him to bring that up just yet. These were mere postulations for now, requiring more evidence of their probability before they became relevant. They were to proceed with all due haste regardless. Tenkai nodded to Artanthos in agreement. "A sound plan. We should be on our way." @Spooky Mittens@Damnatus@Voldemort@Phoebe@Fierach
  8. "So that's how it is. I guess it can't be helped." Tenkai kept his distance from the threatening spectre as he pointed his tachi directly at Tenkai, directing a wave of concentrated bloodlust in his direction. It was a very familiar feeling to Tenkai, the kind that he felt whenever he encountered any warrior firmly set down the Path of Asura. It was likely that in the ghost's lifetime, conflict and strife were ever-present. Perhaps he had lived in an age of war, knowing nothing but the battlefield throughout his young life. Perhaps he had been an assassin, where dealing in death became his very livelihood. Or perhaps he was just another wandering warrior, giving his whole life to the sword and the perfection of his art. Whichever it may be, this aura was unmistakably the one of someone who had lived for nothing but battle, and all the blood that came with it. For such a desire to be strong enough to tether one's spirit to the mortal plane was both awe-inspiring and terrifying at the same time. This was not she kind of spirit that Tenkai was capable of quelling as a monk. He could only do so as a swordsman of Yagyu Shinkage-ryu. Carefully, Tenkai undid the string tying the end of the cloth that concealed his sword, revealing its odd-looking hilt. It held a shape similar to that of a typical tsuka that Ren would recognize, but the materials and make were completely different and unlike that of what he would remember from his lifetime, should he remember any of it at all. With his left hand holding the blade by the saya, Tenkai carefully undid the harness on his kesa until both it and his entire robe fell to the floor. Underneath his robes, Tenkai was clad in an unusually modern-looking pair of sune-ate over a tsutsu-hakama, held together by an armored utility belt and a long gray waist cape. He withdrew his armored right arm through the sleeve of his charcoal black kimono jacket and pulled it through the center, shrugging the garment off of his shoulders and stringing his arm through his rosary necklace so that it wrapped across his chest. As he exposed the shoulder of his armored kote, the darkness of the tomb was suddenly illuminated by the light of small, thin streaks of cerulean energy that formed the outline of additional pieces of armor that materialized on his body as if summoned by magic. An imposing shoulderguard of lamellar plates connected to a larger pauldron carved in the likeness of an angered Acalanatha appeared on his right shoulder. A magitek housing unit not that much bigger than the saya of his sword appeared at the left side of his hip, encasing the saya itself so that the sheathed sword would stay anchored at his side. All this was done without Tenkai's attention ever leaving the spirit, unfazed by its aura of bloodshed and the natural sense of terror exuded by disembodied spirits. He took note of the fact that the spirit was leading with his left hand, though he did not immediately assume that meant he was predominantly left-handed. Presuming that the spirit did not attempt to take the initiative as the monk prepared himself, he would finally draw his sword, turning his hips to pull back the scabbard in his hand and draw the blade in a single, fluid motion. With the tip of the blade pointing at the spirit's eyes, it took little more than a small step back with his left foot and a twist of his blade for Tenkai to assume seigan-no-kurai. Unlike the usual seigan-no-kamae, Shinkage-ryu's seigan-no-kurai was a more angled posture, with the right side forward and the fists held just to the right of Tenkai's center-line from the spirit's perspective. Despite the angling of his body and the blade itself, the tip remained level with the spirit's eyes. A cold determination burned dimly in Tenkai's eye like a flickering blue ember. If the only thing that would settle this spirit and therefore rid the tomb of its disquiet was a duel, then Tenkai would do as he must. 我は柳生新陰流の松本天海。推して参る! "Ware wa Yagyu Shinkage-ryu no Matsumoto Tenkai. Oshite mairu!" (I am Tenkai Matsumoto of Yagyu New Shadow School. Have at thee!)
  9. For a moment Tenkai had thought his blow had struck home, and in some fashion it had. The tip of his sword had managed to bite into the side of its knee, but before the cut could travel all the way Tenkai would find himself blindsided by the heavily armored form of Davath crashing into him. The Herald's violent backswing crashed into Tenkai's unarmored left side, swatting him away with the weight of a fully-armored Custodes. Presuming that the daemon let go of Davath, the two of them would be sent flying backwards before crashing into a heap. Tenkai's bodysuit had afforded him some manner of protection from any cuts and scrapes he would have received by having his skin snag against any sharp or pointed sections of armor, but there was little to be done about the concussive force other than to go with it rather than resist. Had Tenkai not been made of sterner stuff, the crash would have broken every bone in his body. Meanwhile, Alexa's valiant efforts to hold the daemon at bay were met with a powerful roar of unbridled hatred as the Blood God's blessing surged within the Herald. It sought to repel them all with a psychic scream that burned with Khorne's infinite enmity towards psychics and magic-users. Tenkai was nearly beaten back down by the scream alone, but he braced himself on his knee like a stone in a raging river, clearing his mind so that the unrelenting force would pass him. Alexa's attempt to deal a decisive blow to the daemon had bought them some breathing room, despite the disorienting roar. It was not unlike a daemon of Khorne to take a moment to savor their own rage and delight in the bloodshed, resulting in the briefest of pauses. Normally that would serve as a good opening, but after being waylaid by the scream, that opportunity wasn't in the cards for now. But it did manage to buy Tenkai a second wind. With a flash of steel the swordsman lashed out with a powerful swing of his Muramasa, cutting through empty space with such force that it split the very air in two, displacing it and sending a blade of air pressure flying toward's the creature's neck. 風神斬! "Fuujinzan!" (Wind God Slash) It was true that direct psychic assaults did not work against Khornate daemons and warriors who held great favor with the Blood God. Khorne's own being as a penultimate Warp entity, a god among daemons, was a psychic force in and of itself that could overpower even the most powerful psykers. But that did not spare his followers from indirect psychic attacks, such as objects thrown via telekinesis or daemon-quelling magicks focused through a physical weapon. Tenkai's attack worked in an almost similar fashion, using his ki to launch a strike that turned the air itself into a weapon that would deal damage to the Herald irregardless of its god's blessing. Though the strike would likely not pierce its armor, whether or not it cut flesh would not matter as the force of the blow would still rattle the daemon's helmet enough to anger it. Tenkai wanted to keep the Herald's attention focused on him. After Ashil and Davath were waylaid so, Tenkai remained as the only one with a chance of standing toe-to-toe with the daemon in full on melee combat. In the meantime, he could only hope that Inquisitor Alexa or the Custodes would notice the wound on the Blackend Knight's knee and focus on it. There were other points where its armor was compromised, but this was a wound to its corporeal form. Exploiting and compromising it would make it easier for the daemon's entire physical form to unravel. @Fierach@Maverick
  10. "Gladly," Tenkai replied with a wry half-smirk. He knew that Arthur was being a bit tongue-in-cheek, which was ironic given how he was sticking it out of his mouth. Interestingly, however, there was more than just jest at play with the monk's reply. "I intend to give my share to Inn'sth." Tenkai looked around at the run-down hamlet and its despondent inhabitants. He could see how much the land had scarred them, both in body and soul. How any of them managed to hold on to sanity with such little resources was astonishing, which was probably why such cases were so few and far between. "It's important that whatever we find out there in the wastes is kept there rather than being left free roam the continent, and the people of this town have a part to play in maintaining this redoubt. Not just the Order of the White Hand, or the Order of Force Majeure. For all they've been through, the least we could do is give them a better wall." It was true that Tenkai could afford the luxury of giving away his share of the bounty. The Order's resources ran deep, and there was little Tenkai needed in this life. Whatever he did need was well within the Order's ability to provide. In that sense, he had fallen out of his old vagabond ways into a more privileged existence, but that privilege was not lost on him. Regardless of the Order's aid or no, the result would have been the same. Even in days past, Tenkai had no need for trinkets and treasure. The only difference now was that the hopeful sense of adventure he had once possessed had been snuffed out. Tenkai wasn't the least bit surprised that Arthur knew the researcher that they were supposed to rendezvous with outside of Inn'sth. Arthur was a very resourceful individual and a magus to boot, and mages were a very academic lot for the most part. In a way, hearing that there was some manner of personal investment to their task on his compatriot's part felt oddly refreshing. This meant that their aims would align all the more, despite the end result of their venture. The monk made no indication of quarrel over what could have been considered withheld information, and it seemed like Artanthos was of the same mind. With that settled, he let Arthur and Archibald take the time to catch up as the whole group got up to speed together. Tenkai graciously accepted the provisions from Archibald's assistant, inspecting each one. The enchanted lantern was one of the more fascinating items. Tenkai possessed various magitek gadgets himself, but even the small flashlight mounting he kept in one of the compartments still ran on power cells. Magitek power cells, but power cells nonetheless. It was better to rely on this ensorcelled cold-flame lantern to light the way, saving his backups as a last resort. The fact that it gave off no heat signature would undoubtedly be very useful for keeping themselves hidden. Truth be told, Tenkai had often overlooked the value of alternate light sources, given the fact that he could generate light as needed using his own abilities as a monk. However, using one's spirit energy simply as a light source was not a very cost effective means of doing so, and in Tenkai's case it would require him to chant a mantra in order to keep it up. There were ways to maintain it more easily, but that required other pieces of Buddhist paraphernalia that Tenkai did not bring with him. Ultimately, Tenkai was far more fortunate to be provided with the lantern. The flares would also come in handy if they needed to split up for any reason, though Tenkai was loathe to even consider that possibility. Splitting up sounded like a very bad idea for a place like Yh'mi, but the possibility was always there. They had to be prepared. Besides all of these, the only other piece of equipment that was of most use to this situation besides his sword was the small book that James had provided him with. The book contained a brief bestiary of the many denizens of Yh'mi and the terrible ways they could kill you. There were a few in particular that James had specifically warned him about already, but having the book to review was a good way to keep this knowledge fresh. It seemed like the book would be the perfect way to pass the time in the event that they had to set up camp on their journey. While many might think of reading such literature in the middle of the wastes themselves akin to reading the Malleus Maleficarum while traipsing the Nine Hells or Little Red Riding Hood in the middle of a wolf-infested forest, Tenkai was not so easily disquieted. If anything, reading such a text helped him feel just about as safe as he possibly could be in a place like this, armed with the necessary knowledge of the darkness before them. The monk saw no problem when it came to rationing the provisions, either. Going for days without food was one of those skills that managed to stick with Tenkai long after his traveling days had ended. Monks were taught to live off the alms of strangers, and on pilgrimages Tenkai would have to put himself at the mercy of other peoples' kindness or cruelty. Doing so had taught him a deep appreciation of even the most meager of meals and the nature of the suffering brought on by hunger. This was needed in order to develop compassion for the preta, the hungry ghosts of those whose previous lives had been filled with greed and gluttony and now suffered greatly for it. That being said, he felt it was best to leave the food portioning to the party leaders, and he would take only what was given to him. "Understood," Tenkai replied with a nod. It was surprising to see Artanthos in what could only be described as an affable mood, especially in a situation like this. Not to say that Artanthos was particularly dour, but what little he knew of the fallen knight had shown him to be rather stern and severe when it came to the grim work he was often faced with. Perhaps this was simply the side of him that could only be seen by those who gained some modicum of his trust, something that Tenkai himself had seemingly lost the ability to do long ago. Or at least he thought he had. There was a grim honesty about Artanthos and his self-imposed duty, and that was something Tenkai could understand and relate to after everything that had happened to him. It was something that made the fallen knight seem worth trusting, far more than anyone of a more lighthearted nature. While Artanthos saw to his steed, Tenkai was as much intent on learning what he could from their current host as Artanthos was. No doubt Arthur would like to learn what Archibald knew of those they sought and what they had been seeking as well, and it was likely he was already asking the old researcher just that. Regardless of which, proper introductions were in order. "I have to say I concur with my companion on this one," said Tenkai as he stepped closer to the rest of the group. "It's best that you tell us all that you know of these missing researchers and just what exactly they were looking for out here. But before that, I would have all your names." His attention was primarily focused on that of the two mercenaries who had came to the forward camp before them, as Tenkai already knew Arthur. However, despite knowing the researcher's name, it would be good to receive a proper introduction to Archibald. Perhaps Arthur could do the honors, given his previous acquaintance? To that end, Tenkai gave Arthur the slightest knowing tilt of the head. "My name is Tenkai," he began, not one to ask for that which he would not give himself. "I am a Knight of the Order of Force Majeure."
  11. So your end goal for her character is to become a historical figure? Wouldn't that happen regardless of how events transpired? Maybe I'm just not understanding what you mean with the whole Zengi thing.
  12. @Ataraxy I'm sorry, just as an additional here: I'm not trying to start a fight/argument over this here, and I don't want you to be put off by what I'm saying. These are just things to keep in mind and consider, as well as me addressing the points you bring up that seem to be holding you back on this story. I 100% understand and respect the level of attachment you have with Lilith. I'd be a hypocrite if I didn't believe that. I just think that requires some definite agreement here so that we're all on the same page. It should be none of this "well, that's what YOU guys thought, but I think--". Once we're in the story together, there has to be communication and honesty of what's doable and what isn't, as well as whether people want to do it or not. That being said, I think we've at least settled what will happen in Nede 2.
  13. I get that, but that's kindof what I'm asking about here. "Planning on following through" and "give no guarantee" are two statements at odds with each other. Planning to follow through while equivocating with the "no guarantee" is like trying to enter a room while keeping one foot out the door. Now, if what you're getting at here is that you want to use the Nede thread as a litmus test going forward with regards to your availability, I can understand that. But if Nede ends up showing that you don't have the time for it, what then? Would we have the capture happen at the end of Nede 2 instead of in a new thread "months" down the line in IC time? A few things here. The "unfairness" I mentioned is more a matter of player involvement. You're the one who made this interest check and proposed this part of the story. How is that pressuring you? If you're not 100% ready to do that, why even do an interest check? I get it, you wanted to see if there was an interest, but then it's less of an interest check into a roleplay you want to do and more of the "I wanna know how many people want to see Lilith defeated." You could have accomplished that without ever proposing a potential plotline. I agree, again, that changing your mind six months down the line would cause issues. That's part of the reason why these things get set in agreements, so that there is no confusion or changing of minds here. You changing your mind about it after saying you want to do it is more of a problem on your end than a problem with everyone who came in expecting what was discussed. (This actually reminds me of a similar issue regarding a much-hyped PC game that I'd...rather...not remember... ._. ) So that's why you have to ask yourself, what would make you change your mind? And if you could change your mind, why not just...not propose the interest check? Don't even think of the plot because it feels more like something you don't want to do rather than want to eventually do. Then, when you've finally decided to have it run its course, you could bring it up again. That way you'll have interest from everyone who would want to be involved in it from then on rather than people who showed interest before, only to lose it because they were unsure whether or not it was ever going to happen. (I know this from experience given the fact that I've 100% made that mistake before, to my own detriment.) I'll also add that just because Lilith is captured doesn't mean you can't roleplay as her, unless she's held in some sort of stasis, but that doesn't mean it has to happen that way. Even if it did, there's still ways around that in terms of writing and character development. Dream sequences exploring character depth, some form of incorporeal communication with the other Cult members, etc. The point of this isn't to "ban" you from playing Lilith at all. Not to mention, I don't remember there being any rule with regards to the time taken for her to be captured. I'm even being told about Valucre's "Brevity Rules" applying there if that's the case. There's many ways that can be accommodated if the issue is simply your attachment to Lilith. Since you brought up Tenkai, however, I would like to point out that him getting captured in an RP that I myself proposed would not be "banning" him from roleplay. If I intended for the capture, then I'm either roleplaying out the capture for a plot, or I'm putting him on a character-developing hiatus for whatever reason. And even then, I wouldn't be barred from RPing him if the other places I wanted to play him happened at a point before his capture or after his eventual escape. (also, not that important, but I think if I had Tenkai do everything that Lilith has done to the exact same scale and gravity, I would actually want him to be stopped eventually). Moreover, I don't know how you wanting to play Lilith in other plots and storylines further down the line has anything to do with her capture. Thinking about that, if you wouldn't have time to play out this story and her capture, why would you have time for any other roleplay? Are you saying you wouldn't have time IRL to play this out but also have time to play in other plots elsewhere? ...this ended up being more than a few things. .w.; I'm sorry. Not sure why this is "last ditch". Last ditch for who? For Lilith? That sounds more like a last ditch to have Lilith escape/benefit rather than save the story. A real last ditch would just be coming together to wrap it all up in a post-mortem between the players and just...moving on with everything. Now, I don't know anything about Zengi other than him being a historical figure in Val lore, so I don't really know what to say to that or what you're getting at. Are you saying you'd just have her poof, no repercussions, no consequences, and then force her into being codified as a legend? I guess I can't really say anything to that because you have BL powers, though. 🤷‍♂️ Wait, so Lilith won't know what happened, but she has to know she's being contained, right? She'll know it the moment she tries to leave Nu Martyr. Also, are we talking about Nu Martyr the city, or Nu Martyr the entire province? I mean, was it? What was the joke then? It's still a joke rooted in an outcome you thought was what we were going for until I corrected you. Had I agreed with you and went along with it, would it still be a joke?
  14. I didn't want to do this before, but I feel like I should probably talk about it since I guess I still feel confused. This interest thread is neither for the Toto thread or the second Nede thread to follow it, correct? It's simply an interest check for the overall plot idea of Lilith's "fall and defeat". And as such, that same "fall and defeat" may or may not happen during the Nede thread. But then you add: "I'm currently still interested in this happening, however, but that is not a guarantee it will happen, especially with my IRL time constraints." "There might come a time where I simply cannot post and have Lilith poof from Valucre in some way. Who knows." So this is an interest check for a story that may or may not end up happening? Now, to be fair, I realize the irony of what I'm saying here. It's not like I haven't made interest checks for things I wanted to do only for it to change dramatically along the way (like my own canon quest) or being in an RP that never reached its fruition. But it's definitely the first time I've gone into an interest check where the prevailing thought is that it may or may not happen, or that there's no guarantee it'd happen. Usually its just "I wanna do x, and we're gonna try to do x. Hopefully life won't get in the way but if it does, we'll work it out or around it." And then if things peter out its not because anyone went in thinking that was what was going to happen, since that kind of mindset practically causes it to happen. Would it not be more pragmatic to think of some sort of contingency in terms of making sure the plot ends up wrapped up some way for those who were involved and everything they wrote for it? Not just for this interest check, but for the entire arc regarding the Cult of Power. It isn't a good idea to start everyone off with the looming idea in their head that they could get themselves invested in the story that is to come after Nede (that is, everything leading up to Lilith's inevitable defeat) only for it to go nowhere due to RL constraints, and then simply be left with "well, I told you it could happen, soooo..." I'd rather we go into it with a more definitive idea of things, try to make it happen so that we all write a good story together, and if RL gets in the way, just give RL the time it needs. And if it really did get to the point where you seriously never can post again, that's what the contingency is for. Finding some way to wrap up the plot that doesn't require a player who is permanently indisposed. Simply having Lilith "poof" from Valucre would be a slap in the face to everyone who put in time and effort writing these stories. It would be a slap in your face, too, to be honest. So I think that maybe this is something that should be settled before going forward for the sake of everyone who has shown interest. Mind you, I could be a complete idiot and this could have already been resolved to that degree without my knowledge, leading me to to be incredibly behind on the times. But I'm willing to risk looking like a buffoon for the sake of mental clarity. :U Aside from that, it looks like you all spoke already about the matter of capture, saying that this Nede part 2 thread will not end in Lilith's capture, just her containment. If that's so, then are we just using "capture" as synonymous with "fall and defeat"? Because I'd argue that since we all agreed Lilith's capture was going to be temporary, it's not synonymous at all. This is sortof what I mean about the possibility of the plot going nowhere. But if everyone's already in agreement that the eventual capture after the events of Nede part 2 is the aforementioned defeat, then I won't object further for sake of ease. What I WILL say, however, based on this little tidbit I missed: I hate to burst your bubble, Raxy, but homie don't play dat. You already got your "very bloody Tenkai Matsumoto" at Nu Martyr. The fact that it never got a chance to be written out isn't my fault, and I have contacted you several times about doing something short so that the canon can be complete. You don't have time for that, I know, but barring that the only thing we can really submit for canonization in that regard is the post-mortem of the event that I used at the beginning of this thread. I said that for Nede 2 we'd do a give and take since we're writing a story. More of an even clash that ultimately results in Lilith escaping to Nu Martyr while Tenkai has to pull back to help the OFM fight Ankou. I'm not doing a Worf Effect repeat performance where he gets thrashed around like a red-headed stepchild. If you really want the satisfaction of Lilith doing a number on Tenkai, we're going to have to write out that old Nu Martyr battle encounter like I said before. Nede 2 is a different animal. Tagging the rest of you for thoughts and acknowledgement. @amenities@Fierach@danzilla3@supernal
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