Shadows of Jade


Date: 2018-06-13
Pose Count: 22
Sora Hisakata 2018-06-13 22:39:16 92082
Kazeko had a peculiar situation. One of her old familiars, one of the few that still roam was showing unusual amounts of strength and size. Rather than the slinking little shadow rodent it was supposed to be, it had grown to be as large as a car and as aggressive and hostile as a hungry predator. Of course, while it was tempting to try to capture and analyze it... Kazeko didn't exactly have the tools.

Fortunately Kazeko's wind-assisted speed does mean she could fight it fairly well. Even this large and strong, it's still restricted to close combat. Thus, she's already made good progress on trying to take it down. It's ragged and torn, the shadows fraying heavily at the edges. Unfortunately, Kazeko wasn't quite paying enough attention to where she's going, and the alley she thought would open back up to another street turns out to be a dead end. While she can fly, she can't fly and fight at once, and so if she were to take off she'd give it an opportunity to go after innocents.

Perhaps she should've asked for backup. But... like so often, there's the matter of pride.
Miho Kagami 2018-06-13 22:58:22 92083
A few moments ago, Miho felt a tug on her soul. This time, she knew immediately that it was one of the shards of the Shadow Jade, and her feeling was that it was over by Korma Chameleon, so she called up Rashmi for backup. Still in her Seishou Middle School uniform, she reconvened at the Korma Chameleon ...

... and now the two approach the alleyway. Miho pauses and frowns as she hears the sounds of battle as they draw nearer. "What in the world ..." she says, in her scratchy and androgynous voice. She grins back at Rashmi. "I guess someone else got to it first. Explains why I suddenly started feeling like it was moving, too."

At that moment, the oversized familiar suddenly turns towards the entrance to the alleyway, distracted, as if something more important than Kazeko had suddenly caught its attention.
Rashmi Terios 2018-06-13 23:05:43 92084
*BONG!* << WARNING. ANOMALOUS DARK ENERGY DETECTED, MASTER >> Nicomachea chirps.

Rashmi's expression flicks from worried to determined. "All right. Miho, the air is gonna look funny for awhile, y'know? But it's okay. We're just making sure no innocents get hurt, and nothing gets wrecked. Fights can get... splashy." Tugging Miho to one side, she takes a step back... And suddenly becomes shrouded in golden light that shatters a moment later, leaving her in an ornate bolero jacket and lace-edged skirt over a black bodysuit, holding what looks for all the world like a giant, armored encyclopedia.

"Last question," she says, as a circle traced in golden light spreads beneath her feet, eye-twistigly complex diagrams and geometries rotating in opposition to each other.

I've got a good few ways to keep you safe; but how much d'you want to be able to *move?*"

*bing!* << TIME-SPACE BARRIER >>

And now Kazeko has proof that backup is on the way; starting from its very apex, a dome spreads out and down to cover the surrounding neighborhoods, seeming to filter the sunlight through a fractal screen of green and black.
Froggy Lamya 2018-06-13 23:12:03 92085
Lamya was on her way to the Korma Chameleon to grab some of that 'curry' for lunch. While not sweet and delictable as donuts are, she has found that the smoky flavor reminds her of the human dishes that were cooked back when she was a proper dragon, so there's a small pang of homesickness there as well. Besides there's a slight kick to it that pleases her palate, though for some reason humans always look at her funny when she asks for extra of that spice.

She doesn't get a chance to order her lunch when she sees her friend Rashmi rush out of the restaraunt, and run right past her without so much as a comment. Odd. The dragon turns and chases after her until they all meet up in the allyway.

"Fascinating!" she exclaims when she sees the youma, and her eyes cross slightly at Rashmi's barrier magic. "Wonderful!" she squeals in delight, the youma totally forgotten, a hand reaching out and touching the golden barrier. "Such complicated magical calculus! It would have taken me decades to work out the formula for this!" A forked tongue flicks out and tastes the barrier's residue from her fingers.

"You'll have to show me how you do...." begins Lamya, turning back to her friend, the youma returning to her line of sight. "Oh, yes. That."
Sora Hisakata 2018-06-13 23:19:53 92086
A barrier, a distraction, a ... possibly future friend and current acquaintance of some sort in apparent danger, a stranger who kept demanding food, a stranger who provides good food. Kazeko process all these new imputs quickly, and responds the only way she knows how. By starting a graceful pirouette, and then speeding up, and speeding up, along with the winds that surround her.

"Get back!" Kazeko warns as she continues gaining in force. She knows what barriers are like, so she doesn't hesitate to go F5 on the Fujita scale, tearing apart the nearby buildings to bring her full strength to this tornado she's cladding herself in, bringing it all to bear on the shadow familiar.
Miho Kagami 2018-06-13 23:29:42 92087
Miho blinks as Rashmi's light show begins. "Wow, that's handy," she says. "Did Nico-san just say 'Time-Space Barrier'?" She shrugs and shakes her head. "I don't really have any issues with not moving, if, if I can at least see what's going on I guess, but, uh, I'm not picky as long as I'm safe and ..."

She trails off as someone she doesn't recognize suddenly shows up and starts poking at Rashmi's magic. "Um ... hello?" she says uncertainly, peering at Lamya. She slowly starts moving her arms up from her sides, as if she's about to cross them, then jerks back as she hears Kazeko's voice and immediately covers her face with both arms. (Though she does leave a small gap between them that she can see through.)

And then a tornado happens! The familiar looks back up at Kazeko just in time to get caught up in her attack. Thrown around by winds which are clearly going much too fast, it falls to the ground like a sack of potatoes, and promptly dissolves ...

... into a dark green mist, revealing the usual, smaller form of one of the Shadow Witch's familiars, which dissipates the normal way almost immediately. Lying on the ground in its place is a small shard of what appears to be black jade, pulsing with curse-energy and emanating wisps of green-black shadow.
Rashmi Terios 2018-06-13 23:37:03 92088
"Hi Lamya-chan!" Rashmi chirps. "One sec, first we have--" And then, tornado.

*bing!* << SOLAR SHIELD >>

Another, much smaller dome of hard, transparent light -- kind of like stained glass, but much more see-through -- slams down over the trio, as Kazeko's winds rip the empowered youma apart like the finger of Kami.

".....Orrrrrrr," Rashmi says, somewhat nonplussed, "we can wait for Kazeko's spell to finish. Miho-chan, this is Lamya-chan. Lamya-chan's a dragon, and Lacrima's roommate. Lamya-chan, Miho-chan's got a really big curse being counteracted by *really* big light magic, apparently." Introductions out of the way, the redhead turns her attention to the winds, absently adjusting her spectacles as she takes in the singular experience of being in the middle of a tornado. ".....Movie didn't really do it justice... um. Anyway. Lamya-chan, I don't actually *do* the calculating, it's Nicomachea here," she says, hefting the book. "He does the math and uses my energy to power it."
Froggy Lamya 2018-06-13 23:43:42 92089
Lamya seems to the tornado that suddenly whips up around her, gale force winds whip at her hair and skirt until Rashmi's barrier protects her from it. A hand raises in greeting as the introductions are done. "It's good to meet you, Miho-chan," she says stepping closer to the two. She stops when the familiar shrinks and disappears, leaving a shard of evil behind and carefully approaches it.

She squats down and reaches out to touch it asking, "What is this?"
Sora Hisakata 2018-06-13 23:47:45 92090
The winds die down quickly after they stop being necessary, the pieces of rubble in the air deposited out of the way of the others present. "Hey Terios-san, Miho-san, great dragon of almighty doom. Sorry, I just realized a timey wimey barrier had gone up and I could go all out, so I did. I'm not sure what happened to that familiar to make it so big, it's not supposed to be that way." Unfortunately, she didn't hear Rashmi's explanation over the wind. "Name's Kazeko, the winds are mine to command."
Miho Kagami 2018-06-13 23:55:23 92091
Miho lowers her arms as the barrier appears. "Oh, right, I think No-- uh, Lacrima-chan mentioned a dragon when I met her at the ECFH," she says distractedly. "In other news, wow, remind me never to get on Kazeko-san's bad side."

She watches Lamya approach the shard. "Hi, Kazeko-san," she says, giving a quick bow. "Lamya-san, that is a shard of the Shadow Jade, which was this artifact of doom I guess. Or something." She shrugs. "Uh, it got shattered almost seventy years ago, and gave my great grandmother Miho Oujino a Death Curse, and a magical girl called Life Mahou Wonder gave her a Life Blessing to counteract it, and I basically inherited them, and now ..."

She suddenly realizes something, and smacks her forehead. "Of course! Youma which have been buffed up by shards of the Shadow Jade can ... 'use' the connection to my Death Curse to draw me towards them, which means that hypothetically they could use me as a sort of magical metal detector to find the other shards and put the Shadow Jade back together!" She shakes her head. "Uh, anyway ... Hokuto Minase, the, the onmyouji, she has one of the shards right now after ... she, the fox-girl Jiaying Maki-san, and Cure Gull the Pretty Cure saved me." She sounds like she's running out of steam, and as though she's handling by talking more quickly. "And Hokuto-chan taught me how to actually use the Life Blessing and now I have healing powers and I can possibly transform I guess." In the process, her voice has a slight downward shift in pitch.
Rashmi Terios 2018-06-13 23:59:18 92092
"....So you probably don't want to touch it, Lamya-chan," Rashmi sums up for the terminally intellectually fascinated. "As magical as you are, I don't like the thought of a Dark superdragon going nuts this close to home." Looking from Kazeko to Miho, the redhead smiles nervously. "So do either of you know how we could get that safely to Minase-chan? Only I could... but I don't know how well alien space magic would interact. And... Well that's good that you know how to handle it, Miho-chan! Only, you don't sound really happy about that."
Froggy Lamya 2018-06-14 00:05:32 92093
Lamya's finger hovers mere centimeters over the jade, as she studies it. "I'm sure I could handle it," she says her voice filled with longing for power. A moment's temptation passes, however, and her hand lifts up to finger the collar that encircles her neck. "No. I suppose I shouldn't take the risk."

She stands and turns to her friend Rashmi and suggests, "A barrier, like the one you provided before, but small and around the shard could do the trick I would imagine."
Sora Hisakata 2018-06-14 00:12:59 92094
Kazeko listens to the explanation, and her winds wrap around the shard and move it up in the air and towards her, making it float near her. "If getting these together is what the youma want. Shouldn't we be keeping them separate?" She asks, clearly curious. Her free hand opens up the old chained book she's holding and then grabs a pen, writing down a quick note. "I could keep an eye on this one. I know a couple sealing methods, and the Boreal Tome says it knows a few more." She kind of doesn't seem sure about the rest of Miho's story, other than a simple offer. "If you ever need help, ask. Jia-chan and Lacri-chan know how to get in touch with me, as do Chiba-san and Terios-san."
Miho Kagami 2018-06-14 00:22:34 92095
Miho frowns. "Hokuto-chan just covered it in a bunch of sealing-charms," she says. "And ... yeah, Kazeko-san, I was gonna say, my gut says we shouldn't put too many of them together." She looks down at her right hand. "I think it ... wants to be put back together ... if that makes sense. I know the Death Curse can talk, though it's only just sorta said 'reflections' on my bad moods I guess."

She sighs softly, and her voice has a downward-shift in pitch again, albeit a more subtle one. "... I'm totally fine with the healing part, I want to get in touch with the ECFH to see if I can be, uh, 'on call' I guess, I just ... dunno about the 'transforming' part. I'm exactly balanced between staying out of the extra danger and actually being able to do something about the danger. And ... but ..." She shakes her head. "... Lacrima-chan said I'd need to transform, and that's just ... it sort of ..." She shakes her head again. It's clear that Lacrima's comment did not make it an easier decision. She brings her pitch back up again. "... sorry, I'm just being a downer, huh."
Rashmi Terios 2018-06-14 00:46:47 92096
"You'll let us know if it starts getting.... insistent, Kazeko-chan?" Rashmi says... probably the most diplomatic way she can think of to note that Kazeko might have her own issues with temptation. Standing next to Lamya, she pats the dragon's shoulder, giving the dragon a grateful look; her resistance did not go ignored. "Miho-chan? It's something a *lot* of us have to deal with; some people can't imagine doing anything else, some wish it hever happened to them... Personally, I intend to go into politics after university, so I won't be carrying Nicomachea forever. So seriously, it's up to you where the balance is."
Froggy Lamya 2018-06-14 00:52:10 92097
Lamya, hand briefly clasps Rashmi's in acknowledgement as she shakes her head. "I don't understand what it's like to be anything other than me," she says helpfully. "So you will have to rely on Rashmi for sage advice." Her eyes narrow. "Unless you're a dragon. Then I have a lot of advice for you."
Sora Hisakata 2018-06-14 00:58:05 92098
"Or full of yourself, then she knows quite well what that's like." Kazeko responds to Lamya with a grin, then eyes Rashmi and ponders the question. "Will do." There's a little bit of obvious hurt in her voice. She's not massively hurt, but she knows why Rashmi is making that comment, and it stings. "Kagami-san. I don't begrudge you if you don't want to fight. I understand. But if these things are after you, you should consider learning to defend yourself. We can't always be there for you to protect you."

She stretches and looks at her watch. "But look at the time. I'm late for an appointment. Sorry. Bye." And then off she goes. The jade shard into a pocket.
Miho Kagami 2018-06-14 01:03:16 92100
Miho nods slowly. "Yeah ... I mean ... I guess ..." She smiles weakly to Rashmi. "Making the decision is kind of the entire problem in the first place, so ... I'll just keep poking at the question, I guess."

She nods to Lamya. "I'm human," she says. "I mean ... as far as I know. The first time I went to the ECFH, I said 'I'm not magic', so I'm a little ... less-inclined to make any absolute statements, but. I don't think it makes any logical sense, I guess."

She waves to Kazeko. "Oh, um, see you later, Kazeko-san," she says. "I'll ... well, I mean, I'll definitely keep your suggestion in mind."
Rashmi Terios 2018-06-14 01:16:21 92101
"Kazeko?" Rashmi says, as the witch turns to leave. "I didn't mean to hurt you, asking that. I'm sorry I did. I just worry about my friends, y'know? And you are my friend too. Oh, and Lamya-chan? That's a figure of speech, meaning you have too high an opinion of yourself. But she was joking when she said it, so she doesn't mean it."

Now slightly upset herself, that she hurt someone she likes, she turns to Miho and puts on an answering, slightly weak, smile. "Nobody's perfect, Miho-chan. ....Y'know, as you just saw... But just because you have magic doesn't mean you're not human. I mean, I still think of Lacchan as human, even if biologically she isn't, y'know?"
Froggy Lamya 2018-06-14 01:20:37 92102
Lamya blinks innocently at Kazeko. "What else am I supposed to be full of other than me?" she asks. "I mean. Besides donuts and curry." Her eyes drift over to Rashmi as she explains. "Oh."

She nods at Miho. "I would think you would know if you were a dragon," she muses rubbing her chin in thought. "But I suppose it is possible that you are under a spell to where you believed you were human." She leans in close to examine the girl, a red slitted eye taking in critical details. "But I think It's unlikely."
Miho Kagami 2018-06-14 02:12:34 92103
Miho smiles wanly to Rashmi and shakes her head. "Don't worry about the 'human' thing, I'm just ... splitting hairs there." She lets Lamya examine her, and just nods once and gives the dragon-girl a thumbs-up.

Then she looks at her hands. "... huh. You know, I just realized, I haven't actually done that, that gesture since I joined up with you here, Rashmi-chan," she murmurs. By way of demonstration, she briefly crosses her arms with her left arm grasped by her right. "It's ... this gesture is a sign of the Death Curse and the Life Blessing fooling around when I'm particularly stressed or worried, I never really got to that point emotionally."
Rashmi Terios 2018-06-14 02:19:38 92104
This news brings a smile to Rashmi's face. "It sounds like you weren't super-stressed, then. That's good! I'm glad I could help. And if you want help with training, just because control means confidence, let me know? I've been doing kind of an obstacle course-slash-sparring session with a couple friends, I'd be happy to include more."

Watching Kazeko take her leave for a moment, Rashmi takes a deep breath, and puts on her brightest smile. "But for right now, let's go back and ask Papi for some chom-chom."