Cursed Archery

Amu and Tadase come across Liselotte as she's practicing archery.

Date: 2015-11-21
Pose Count: 19
Liselotte Henschel 2015-11-21 19:06:26 15873
It's very, very early in the morning, at least by most student's standards. The sun's even still coming up, it's about an hour and a half before school, and Seiyou's archery range already has someone making use of it.

The blue-haired, freckled, bespectacled foreigner might not be most people's pick for an archer. She's just tall enough to be awkward, but not enough to be towering. The glasses and messy hair don't help matters.

She's currently dressed in stock-standard archery safety equipment she took from the club's stocks over her school uniform. The bow, however, is a lot larger than most. It's oak, and beautifully engraved with pictures of stags and hunters, hand crafted rather than the machine-made things most often found here.

There's also music to liven up the morning: from the sounds of things, the radio that Lise has brought with her is tuned to an opera station, belting out drama.

She takes a deep breath, knocks an arrow, and let's it fly.

THUNK! It hits the bullseye straight on. The opera dips into a dramatic turn, and Lise does a spin, flipping her bow in the air and catching it as she dances from target to target. Each catch, an arrow in hand, she aims another shot. A bullseye, then one just to the right of the same, timing each shot in rapid succession in between dancing about and singing her heart out along with the radio in a dance of skill and pure passion.

She seems oblivious to the world as she goes about her prctice.
Amu Hinamori 2015-11-21 19:16:00 15876
"But why do we have to be here so early?" Amu Hinamori is not known for her extra early arrivals to Seiyou Academy. Instead, the school's number one 'cool and spicey' fifth grader is best known for her ability to arrive on time at the last instant, and somehow make it look like she planned it.

Today, however, urged by a trio of meddlesome Guardian Characters, Amu is on campus more than an hour before school, dressed for success. Which is to say, one leg warmer isn't even fastened properly and has fallen down onto her shoe, and her armband is pinned on slightly lopsided, and one of her hairclips has fallen out, leaving her with a side-pony instead of pigtails. Okay that last one, at least, is something she would totally rock whether she meant to or not.

"Because I want to draw the sunrise on the hill!" Miki--that would be the little blue one--proclaims.

"It should be very pwetty, at least, and we all get a nice morning walk," Su chimes in encouragingly, though with a decidedly more neutral tone than Mika.

Ran, meanwhile, seems about as enthusiastic as Amu, for once. The little chara mumbles, "But we could be sleeping, still." Which is perhaps surprising, given the little pink cheerleader is usually the most energetic of the trio.
Tadase Hotori 2015-11-21 19:22:22 15878
Tadase Hotori is here early because he's /always here early/ - sometimes it's on Guardians business, sometimes it's on Virtue business, and sometimes, like today, it's because he's got nothing better to do and he gets up early every morning.

This is why he is strolling around the Seiyou campus, hands behind his head, basking in the slow sunrise - and then he sees Liselotte practicing. Kiseki makes a little murmor of approval, and he moves out of the way (since his path was going to bring him across her firing line!) and snakes back around to watch her. He's quiet, because he doesn't want to interrupt.

Kiseki, on the other hand, is not quiet. "She's very good." he murmurs, approvingly.
Liselotte Henschel 2015-11-21 19:34:57 15879
The presence of Amu and her three charas, and at first, a Guardian of the school goes utterly missed. Lise continues her practice: smoothly switching from european styles of archery, to the Japanese style that she's still learning. She's not quite as quick on the draw like this, there's far less dancing about, but she still manages to draw and shoot in tight patterns that speak of years of familiarity despite her very young age. She could barely be older than Tadase or Amu herself.

It's the voice of Kiseki, however, that throws her for a loop. She turns, bow lowered, and blinks.

About three times, as she stares pointedly at the tiny prince in pure confusion. There's a long sigh, she turns back, and lets that arrow fly. Thunk!

Then she sets it aside, puts down the bow, and takes off her glasses. Quietly, she rubs them with the edge of her skirt, and puts them back on. The beanpole of a girl leans in.

It's the look of someone questioning very hard over what she's seeing right now.

"...Well, this is unexpected. Either this is some sort of very strange dream, or I have had too much coffee this morning. Are you really there, mein tiny little Prinz?" Comes the girl in heavily accented japanese. She seems to stumble with her words a bit. There's a finger gently reaching out as she tries to pat the little Chara!

It's about then that she realizes she has an audience, and she blushes deeply. The opera music is flicked off, and her hands go to her sides. There's a gentle smile on her face.

"Oh, I did not see you both...there..." Her eyes flicker to multiple Chara.


"Good morning!" Concludes the girl, trying to /not/ stare too much here.
Amu Hinamori 2015-11-21 19:43:02 15881
"Morning walks are not my idea of a good time," Amu grumbles at Su, but she does trudge along anyways, undeterred. She and her charas crest the hill, and the sunrise comes full into view. All four of them pause to let out a simultaneous, "Wooooooow," soft-voiced, at the sight of the sun rising over the city and ocean to the east.

Miki pulls out a pad of paper and immediately sets to drawing. Amu, meanwhile, kneels down and starts fixing her outfit. She wasn't fully awake when she put it on, but the walk did encourage her to finish waking up, despite her words to Su.

Su hums to herself and moves off to pick flowers, but Ran ... ran spots something far more interesting. "So elegant," she murmurs quietly, as she zips towards the archery range entirely on her own. Ran swoops in next to Kiseki just in time to see Liselotte fire a shot with her bow. "Wow, good job!" Ran intones, and a pair of pom poms appear in her hands. She shakes them excitedly, then calls out, "Amu-chan, Amu-chan! Archery!"

"Hn?" Amu asks, then straightens and looks around for Ran. With her uniform put together properly, she looks far more the cool elementary schooler she's been labeled. "Miki, I'm going to go see what has Ran so excited. Don't daydream too long," she warns the blue-haired Chara, then slings her leather bag over her shoulder and wanders in the direction of the archery fields.

Just in time to spot Liselotte's final shot with the bow. Amu's eyes widen in surprise. "Whoa," she murmurs, then blinks in surprise at Liselotte's blush. "Good morning. That shot was impressive."
Tadase Hotori 2015-11-21 19:51:47 15883
Tadase looks over at Liselotte. "You can hear Kiseki? And see him?" he inquires. Before he can even ask Kiseki the question himself, Kiseki pipes up. "I don't sense a chara or an egg around her." he adds, kind of half-ignoring the girl.

But then... Tadase and Kiseki both hear the heavily accented 'prinz'. That means that Liselotte has about a moment before Tadase blinks, and a very visible crown appears on top of his head.


He moves very close to Liselotte, before whispershouting "WORLD DOMINATION!" He's completly oblivious to Amu for a moment. And, clearly, to reality itself.
Liselotte Henschel 2015-11-21 20:06:46 15884
Where are all of these tiny little people coming from!?

Such are Lise's thoughts for a good three seconds as Amu finally makes herself known. She's trying to be polite, she really is. But Ran is getting a lot of her attention here. One eyebrow scrunches.

", no, that's too kind! I am nowhere near my grandmother in ability! And I am still getting used to Japanese archery. Stances are awkward to move in, though I do suppose they were meant for horseback riding." When bewildered by crazy tiny guardian chara, seek refuge in the normal and comfortable.

"Oh, but where are my manners? Liselotte Henschel! Foreign exchange student if it was not obvious. It is good to see fellow early risers! What are your names?" Comes Lise. From the way she sweeps her bow, that includes the Chara.

What have you done, Lise!?

Tadase's question is utterly ignored as he's suddenly shouting, a crown appears, and it's time for Lise to just /stare/ mouth slightly agape at Tadase.

She summons up every bit of willpower, smiles, and then Lise dips into a dramatic bow.

"How rude of me! Not even recognizing the local monarch of Japan himself! My bow is at your disposal so that we may conquer all that lay before your eyes! Blitzkreig!"

She pauses, oh-so-serious and graceful. For about three seconds, then just devolves into howling laughter.

"Oh, my, and they say the Japanese are reserved! That was the best act I have seen in ages! Are you in the drama club? Opera, perhaps? I love it! You really must show me more of your work!" Comes Lise, the ice thoroughly broken by the 'act'. She still does look to those Chara, though! "What is your name, my budding theater star?"
Amu Hinamori 2015-11-21 20:13:32 15885
There are times when people might question why Amu has a chara as annoying to her as Ran. There are other times when it is very obvious that the two are cut from the same cloth. This is one of the latter moments, as both pink-haired girls stand, slack-jawed, staring at Tadase's involuntary Chara Change with no idea what to say or do.

When Lise joins in on the act, the pink-haired pair become even more incredulous, jaws dropping even further.

Miki, who has up until now been trying to draw despite the distractions, decides to break the ice for them. "My King!" she says, charging in at full speed to join them. "Is it time for world domination? What do we do first?"

Meanwhile, over there, Su is humming to herself, arranging flowers, and generally oblivious to the insanity at the archery range.

When Liselotte devolves into laughter, Amu's mask of confusion starts to crack. She twitches a little, then shakes her head free and says, "Ahaha, yes, that's our Tadase-kun. Such a kidder. He is the school's King's Chair, though; one of the Guardians here at Seiyou Public." She doesn't mention her own role in the Guardians. That cape is way too embarassing. "I'm Amu Hinamori," she introduces herself.
Tadase Hotori 2015-11-21 20:23:59 15887
It's her laughter that somehow seems to bring the rampaging King out of his enforced Character Change. He hears something vaguely about Drama Club, and perhaps he could've written it off or played around it - it's not the first time he's had to do that in public.

But then Miki is over there talking to Kiseki. And while Kiseki is still really into the whole World Domination kick right now, Tadase has broken out - and if Miki's there... that means...

Tadase's eyes move /really slowly/ in Amu's direction - and upon confirmation that she's there too, there's not much of a space for him to make up excuses on the spot.

So rather than continue to talk - he just panics. Visibly. He doesn't run, but he gets VERY still. Rigid, almost. "H...hello." is all he can manage to string together.
Liselotte Henschel 2015-11-21 20:30:09 15889
More little people! Lise gives a wave as Miki rushes over, but most of her attention is on Amu and Tadase (especially Tadase) for the moment!

Her laughter fades into a giggle, already warming up to the pair and company. "It is certainly one way to be introduced to my fellow students! Guardians? King's Chair? Forgive me, I am only about three days off of the boat. Or the trio of connecting flights, as it were." Shudder. /Airports/!

Then she looks back to Tadase. Poor thing, he's panicking, and oh-so-still. Lise pushes up her glasses, walks closer, and reaches out to try to take both of the slightly younger boy's hands in her to grasp and shake with both hands.

"There is no need to be so shy. I find your performance endearing, Tadase-san. Besides, I was the one leaping about on an archery field not five minutes ago, so if you think theatrics is going to somehow make me uncomfortable, then you are silly. Deep breath, alright?" Comes Lise, trying to be reassuring.

Then, she lets go.

"...Though I do wish to address the floating elephant in the room. Where do all of these tiny people come from?"
Amu Hinamori 2015-11-21 20:50:08 15894
Amu shouldn't be surprised at Tadase's sudden shy nervousness. Heck, the first time she did something like that in front of him, she wound up running away from school straight into a cat. How embarassing.

"They're called Guardian Characters," she explains in a subdued tone as she looks at Tadase. "I'm surprised you can see them." Turning to Liselotte, she seems to perk up a little. "None of our Charas can sense any charas or eggs about you, so I'm guessing you don't have one of your own ... are you a magical girl?"
Tadase Hotori 2015-11-21 21:12:48 15897
Tadase manages to find a smile, in all of this - especially when Liselotte goes out of her way to be so kind. "T..thank you." Then there's a huge breath and he lets go of it. The strangeness. The odd feeling. The best thing he can do is just let it go, so he does.

And rapidly, he's back to his normal self. "Right. Guardian characters." he says with a smile. "I'm part of the Guardians of Seiyou Public School, the King's Chair. We help... administer things. Like a student council, but not." The Guardians are actually a hard thing to explain to someone who's not from the school, he's found. And yet so easy to understand for him.

"Right! If you can see Kiseki, there must be something special about you!" he says, suddenly super-curious. "Most people can't see or hear him, so sometimes he forgets to keep his mouth shut." he adds, with a side-eyed glare.
Liselotte Henschel 2015-11-21 21:20:57 15899
Lise mouths over the words for a bit, looking over to all of the various Guardian Characters.

"...So most cannot see them. Well. I am glad then that I somehow missed a race of pixies that existed alongside humanity for millenia."

And then Amu asks a question oh-so-delicately right out in the open. Liselotte visibly winces, and her glasses fall from her face.

"I...ah!" She's kneeling down, hunting for them, coming up with a sigh. She crosses her arms, and there's this slight frown to her face.

"I do suppose it is the obvious question..." She seems a little annoyed, but soon seems to settle down, especially as Tadase finally calms down and explains.

She waves the others to follow her towards the other end of the range as she starts to yank arrows out of the targets.

"So you are problem solvers for the school, hm? A bit stranger, but if that is how things are, that is how they are. I suppose I will just have to learn all about you so I can understand."

She's quick to look around.

"No, I am not normal." She reaches into her pockets, and pulls out a hand-carved image of a stag with embedded red gems.

"This is a trinket that has been passed down in my family. We Henschels have been monster hunters for generations. If it goes bump, howl, roar, or blargh in the night, it is our job to make sure they do not hurt anyone."

"I am actually in the country looking for of specialists. You see, my family's work made us enemies. Long story short, my family was cursed." Her teeth grit here, a mixture of sadness and anger in her eyes.

"So I am looking for people who can help me break it."
Amu Hinamori 2015-11-21 21:27:59 15900
It is, of course, Miki who is excited by the stag-and-ruby image. The blue-haired Chara flies down to inspect it very closely. "It's beautiful," she says, quietly.

Amu leans forward just a little to inspect it, as well, then nods her head like she knows anything about curses and straightens up. And then she realizes, "Wait, c-c-cursed? You mean like ... ghosts? Demons?" She shivers a little and backs away.

"Amu-chan," Ran says with only a tiny little hint of exhasperation. "There aren't any ghosts or demons here now."

This seems to bolster Amu, who straightens up a little and peers at Ran. "Of course not. Everyone knows Ghosts and Demons aren't real."
Liselotte Henschel 2015-11-21 21:36:45 15901
"I would say 'feel free and touch', but that might be a bit large for you little one. You are an artist then? Remind me to show you some of my work some time. Mostly wood carving. It's a family thing."

Poor, poor Amu. Lise holds in a laugh politely, and puts away the trinket only to walk up and try to take both of Amu's hands in her own. Seems to be a habit of hers.

"Hinamori-san, it is alright. I have chased down so-called ghosts, and most of the time they are poorly made rafters that creak and groan in the night, or are simply the neighborhood children playing pranks on old women." She doesn't quite say they don't exist. She's seen too much weird things to say that.

"No, no, not a demon. Definitely no demons." She reaffirms gently to Amu before letting go.

"It was a dragon that my ancestor killed. Terrorizing peasant villages and all of that." She bites her lip. Should she tell them the curses nature?

No, it's too soon. She can still see her dying brother's face too keenly in her mind.

"What of yourselves? You two are not exactly normal either. What do Guardian Characters do?" A more comfortable topic this one.
Tadase Hotori 2015-11-21 21:50:49 15904
"A dragon, huh?" Tadase says, hand to his chin and musing. Because dragons and medieval kings and knights are all very much part of one big fairytale wheelhouse, in a way. Kiseki has the same exact expression and movement.

"Guardian Characters are manifestations of the you that you want to be... of your hopes and dreams. Sorta magnified." he says.

"And with them, you can do great things. Even if they are a little troublesome at times." He looks to Kiseki, then to Ran. And exchanges a glance at Amu.

"Even if they are real, Amu..." he says with a smile. "You're kind of an amazing magical hero now, so you could probably just punch them."
Amu Hinamori 2015-11-21 22:03:27 15906
Amu blinks in surprise as Liselotte invades her personal space. And yet, she doesn't seem entirely put out by it; just startled. When Lise backs away again, Amu smiles at her, then turns to give Tadase an agreeing, knowing look at the menition of their Guardians being troublesome.

"Turns out, they're only troublesome because they care," Amu notes. Such a change from her opinion just two weeks ago. "They just have opinions and ideas entirely their own, and sometimes they don't think things through any more than we do."

"Aheh," at least Ran has the good sense to look a little ashamed at this. Sh e rubs the back of her head with her pom pom, then flies around Amu and Liselotte in a circle. "Dragons sound cool. I bet Amu-chan could beat them up."

"Only if she didn't freak out because it's supernatural," Miki jobserves wryly, drawing a glare of irritation from Amu.

Amu gives a little grunt of disapproval, but gets over it quick enough as she looks back to Lise. "I'm still figuring out what all of this is really all about. Tadase-kun~ has been teaching me, because he really is a great guy," she glances towards him, blushes a little, then says, "I think I'd probably be completely dead right now if it weren't for him." So melodramatic.
Liselotte Henschel 2015-11-21 22:15:08 15908
Pardon Lise while she's utterly fascinated. "So they are your hopes and dreams personified." Blink.

She gives the tiniest of little eee's as she finally gives in and goes about head-petting each and every Chara that doesn't run away in pure fear!

"And they are so cute! So tiny and lovely and I just want to hug each one!" Flee! Flee little Charas!

But thankfully she manages to resist the urge, turning back to the two as she starts putting aay her archery equipment.

To Amu, she chuckles. "They are like cute little brothers and sisters!" Her voice, for a moment, chokes audibly. She recovers quickly, but she's definitely dwelling inward for a moment or two.

"Well, if we find any, I will get you both to help!" There's something oddly serious in the way she says it, as though it's some solemn duty. It likely /is/.

She turns to the pair.

"It is getting a bit late, though. I hope we can speak again, Hinamori-san, Tadase-san. Somehow I have a feeling that it will be inevitable." A little mysterious smile, and with a wave, she's off to stow away equipment before the class bell rings!
Tadase Hotori 2015-11-21 22:25:31 15910
"I'm sure you'd be okay, Amu-chan." Tadase says, helpfully. But then Kiseki floats down. "I don't think so." Kiseki says, prompting another glare from Tadase. He grabs him by his cape and yanks him back and a way.

He only lets him go so that Liselotte can squeeze him, which sadly, she doesn't. He does get that head petting, and looks somewhat put out.

"You should treat your king with more respect!" Kiseki says, his hair now a bit mussed.

Tadase considers offering more, but he realizes he's actually already said a lot. It's a good thing he's got such a front-facing role, because he's very bad at his secret identity! "Yeah, at some point we should see if we work well together. It's not all fun and games." he admits.

The bell rings and he smiles to both girls. "Oh! Spent more time than I thought. I'll see you later, Amu-chan, Henschel-san!"