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Zeroth Post
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Zeroth


In the frozen north there is little beauty, the pallid blanket of snow over rugged stony earth. Cracks in the stone let out thin streams of cold air and blow thin fogs of white and grey over a black and white landscape, making it out to be blurry and difficult to pick one location from another. This homeland of Pikatok is her wastrel paradise, her comfort in the absolute cold is tantamount to the survival of all things.

The silently humming gateway behind her enormous throne of stone is the thinnest point of the barrier between spirits and men. If just anyone were allowed through completely unchecked they could unleash Hell on Earth. Guarded solely by the shaggy beast woman, a goliath among men. The culmination of all shamanistic power that should have been distributed among the guardians of every other gate.

Those gates have since lost their guardians, and the gateway in the North is the only one known to all.

This morning she'd left home without a word, still fuming over the recent events of the funeral at Pundambaya. She hadn't dropped her bestial form since two days prior and hadn't said a word since the burial. Having been insulted and unable to do anything about it, Pikatok's mood was quite fowl. So much so that she'd made herself more dangerous, adding spines and poison and even some chemical sprays to her body. She was feeling incredibly spiteful and angry, ready to tear the head off of anyone who dared to approach her gateway.

In the throne she scrapped her claws against the stone, scoring their surface with a dull scraping rumble. Her eyes narrow and scanning, there wasn't much other way they could approach her save the narrow pass. Wind blew through her enormous mane and shook her hair wildly, exposing the dark bronze of her skin at the thinner points of the hair. The brown leather thong where she'd carry her anchor was bare, the massive slab of rusted iron and coral lay resting on the right side of the throne. Her dim green glow enveloped the entirety of the chair, her frustrations emboldening its brightness and intensity.

Today felt off, and a pit in her stomach told her she wasn't finished being angry.
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Rilla
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Rilla SuperNova Generation / The Lazy Storyteller

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He was back again, the harsh tundra that shines bright white with snow and not much else. There were a people here, and animals, but otherwise this place was virtually devoid of life, as many animals were not accustomed to this level of cold, one that could reach down past your very bones and into your soul to provide a chill. There was nothing here for him, except one thing, and that was what he had sought to avoid before being forced back here.

Rosuto, his father, wanted to speak with him but as always would not jus whisk him away to the land of powerful spirits, but instead, forced him to travel to his domain via specialized gate. There were at least four, but oddly, three of the four were not active. He'd wanted to avoid the guardian of the tundra gate, Pikatok, going so far as to travel the nearly impossible distance and checking the gate that her supremely powerful Husband, Drom, sometimes guarded. When that produced not welcome effects, as the man was missing, he tried the gate to the West, guarded by Limand, the Sceptre of the West.

RyuKyu, did you also find it odd that Limand was not at his post. He mused aloud, fully knowing that unless there was great danger, RyuKyu would not be making an appearance here. He was born of earth and fire, not snow and Frost.

In either event, hand in his newfound weapon, Wukong, a bestial key that took the shape of a decently sized staff, he continued on his trek through the cold. To hopefully garner passage to his father by way it the only gate he had yet to checks. Hers.

On his approach, he thought back to the former times he used this gate. Once resulted in him not only outlasting Pikatok, but beating her as well - even if she did swell his eye. The next, he attempted the same strategy, but she was prepared and managed to avoid it, and land a solid, electrically infused, punch the eye she damaged. He cursed her name every day since, because he lost that eye.

But perhaps he should have thanked her. Without taking that loss, he would not have leaned the truth about his skin, his Creature Skin, that allowed some keys to take over as parts of his body. Alas though, he was back here - going to face her to the third time and as many years it seemed like.

His approach was not stealthy, it would have done no good here, they were solidly in her domain. Having known Pikatok for as long as he had, he could tell what level of power she was, and today, he would be in for the fight of his life. She was bigger, and covered in more fur than a wholly mammoth. There was another dead giveaway to her mood and power. Pikatok lived and died by way of her Anchor. When in an enraged state it was her weapon of choice.

Pikatok, Kei'taro said as he came within hearing distance, You do not seem to be in the mood for this and neither am I. I ask that you kindly just allow me passage. As fruitless as he knew it would be, he had to try. He had grown up, more hair on his face, a little taller, more defined. Without Kusanagi, he seemed more regal, more kind.

His left hand reached up and adjusted the patch of his afflicted eye, a constant reminder of what she had done to him. He didn't need it, his eyes were fixed - but she, nor any opponent, needed to know what was different about that particular eye now.

Kei'taro stared across the fifty foot expanse, all snow, and up towards the giant of a woman. Thunderbird, Kusanagi, and Tortoise Shell would not work this time, but he had another plan that would surely catch her by surprise.
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by LeeRoy
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So long had it been that she'd almost forgotten the eye incident entirely, the details fuzzy at best. For him it had been the worst day of his life, the loss of an eye and permanent disability. For her it had been just another fight with Kei. The man had changed since then, no more was the deadly blade upon his hip, instead a long staff in his hand. Was he aged as well and needed a walking stick? She thought not, this was another trick weapon in his arsenal.

She stepped down from her throne of stone, reaching back to grab the malignant heap of iron and coral. With a terrible rattle of chains it scraped away from its resting position and she heaved it over her shoulder into a new place of rest. The chains fell down to the ground into the snow where the sank deep and silent, only the dull dragging of ice against iron could be heard.

Pikatok lumbered towards him, the raw bestial nature of her visage becoming increasingly clear with each step. The long ropy hair, the dangling loose skin, her eyes two piercing lines of green through a veil of hair. "No, most certainly I am not." She drew her left hand up to the girth of the anchor and gripped tighter with her right. Flakes of rust and coral fell from where she gripped, scraped off by her hard claw-like fingers.

At twenty feet away she and her anchor seemed to lumber like a mountain in the smaller man's path. Now he truly could see how enormous she'd become since their last encounter. Kei could feel it, she could too. The pair would soon be one this day, and Pikatok's lingering fury would not ebb.

The sight of him was more frustrating, she'd wished for someone to unleash on, some fool who'd trespassed or come from the gate. But no, it was the boy once more, her face would have bent into a frown if her lips were still visible. "Boy this day, I have anger in me." She spoke, her accent heavy even in the universal tongue.

"My love has wounded me, my kindness rebuked." There was anger and sorrow with every word and her fingers gripped so tightly that rust flaked further up the anchor's length.

"And you once more arrive, and ask me to let you through."

She leaned down towards him, letting her left knee bend as the foot slid forward. "It will not be, you shall go through the hard way." He would know what she meant, she meant to make a mockery of him this day.
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Rilla
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Rilla SuperNova Generation / The Lazy Storyteller

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A heavy sigh parted the lips of Kei'taro, this day would truly not be one of joy and happiness. Only twice before had he seen her in any combination of her present state, and he knew which he feared more. Already a formidable opponent, she was outright unbeatable in this state. Pikatok was a specimen of bestial authority, slightly different than himself. This was the most powerful state he had seen her in, a near complete amalgamation of her powers. What made it worse, in the eyes if Kei'taro, was that she brought along that impossible weapon of hers. The anchor. It was heavy, he could never lift it, but she swung it with finesse and control, like he had once done Kusanagi.

His right hand increased his grip on Wukong, a subtle glow hidden beneath his shirt. In her current state, this battle would need to conclude shortly, though he could see no other way for it. Their engagements never lasted much longer than a couple of minutes, often with him on the losing side.

Pikatok, today is not the day for either of us. My brother is here, I felt the arrival of Yggdrasil, do you know of that transdimensional transport? She had to know what this meant, but he wouldn't reveal it. Not what his brother had done, not what he failed to stop. Not the chain of events that had led them here today, or what other atrocities his brother would commit.

Separated by twenty feet, he was silently glad his eye was covered, so she couldn't see the sadness in it - nor the difference. Perhaps she would think it were just missing.

Pikatok, whatever sadness had befallen you, let it not control you this day. Whatever pain you wish to inflict, allow it to subside. He knew it would not, it would never until her anger was abated.

He kept himself loose and limber, Wukong feeling almost weightless in his hands. He could see each breath, but his eye never left the woman apart from him. Two powers in the animal kingdom, destined to stay locked in battle, until one is the Victor. The woman who was almost all creature or the man who was covered by animal motifs.
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by LeeRoy
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@Rilla
A thin wisp of steam escaped Kei's lips, he'd sighed, he was concerned with something other than her. Something troubled him as much as something troubled her, and together they were thrust once more. Pikatok's obligation to those above her and the gateway, Kei's obligation to the King beyond and to pass through. Neither of the combatants truly wished for this confrontation, it always resulted in undue suffering for both parties.

It was a sad state of affairs, Pikatok was emotionally vulnerable right now and the animal instinct fueled brain of hers pumped anger and fear into her brain. In this state she was unable to think beyond her primary directives, effectively making her a spiritual machine. Though she was there, consciously, aware of her actions and thoughts.

Kei's face was dour, something more was going on than simply needing to pass by her. The white knuckled grip on his new weapon and the change in his stance to something lighter and more comfortable.

She matched the intensity and raised the anchor to about chest height, leveling it to the same position where she naturally rested her hands in the Tyrant's Stance. Left hand fingers upwards, right hand fingers downwards. Arms extended just enough to open up reach but close enough to draw back into a guard. Her right elbow was about chin height and outwards like a wing, her other elbow bent down to level with her diaphragm.

Her right foot and left foot drew to even horizontal line with her shoulders and she bent her right foot out and away from her body. Her left foot remained pointed forwards. Finally she drew in her chin, the bulging skin flap of her pelican throat became noticeable as the hair on her chin was pulled away.

Each breath that left her mouth became shallower and shallower, she measured each breath and every single one of the fibrous optic nerves that lined her body directed their attention towards the young man in front of her.

She'd been relying more and more on her bestial prowess as age had taken her, he however remained largely the same.

He spoke of his brother, how he was here, how Yggdrasil was here. The Brother she'd never laid eyes on, she was ignorant of who he was largely. Only that he was no small threat, stronger than Kei. She wished to avoid him, for his diabolical nature was known even to her. Yggdrasil being here meant much trouble as well, great events followed its arrival.

She wished not to be among those great events, she wished to fall under its view.

But.

Great things follow those who know the spirits, and both knew them well.

Pikatok lunged forward, pushing down on the snowy ground with her immense muscular fortitude. Almost leaping she crossed the distance in an instant and drew back her arms, bringing the full length of the anchor around her back entirely. The thick hairs flung forward on her body and were caught in the whirlwind of her motion as she brought it back the opposite direction. An enormous amount of snow was blown away in this movement, a virtual snowstorm erupted at the point of her leaping and where she'd wound up.

Point first and fully extended she aimed to knock him fully in half with the first blow. At its farthest point he would risk being struck by the rusted iron hook, at the closest he would risk being bludgeoned by the coral infested rod. It had all happened in a quartersecond, the tremendous instantaneous speed of the long legged fly was a deadly tactic.

Even if she completely missed her swing she would still be a missile of hard flesh and bone, projected at speeds faster than the human eye towards her expectant victim.
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