Hidden 1 mo ago 1 mo ago Post by Tasuke
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Tasuke Tifaholic

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How lovely is the full moon this summer night as it hangs brightly in the twinkling, starry black; milky white pouring upon the great oriental capital of Wutai amidst celebration of her annual festival. A sticky humidity permeates air perfumed with the slightest scent of smoke and jasmine incense carried by refreshing zephyrs; collected in a halo fog wrapping a sea of white-robed denizens standing in the central square awash in rosy glow of hanging lanterns crisscrossing above.

Solemn silence is the practice of these kimono-clad folk who've gathered before a massive, miniature pagoda; an almost watery glow seeps from its not-quite-see-thru windows: ripples and spots curiously playful while they flash and fade continually.

Then the boom of the drums.

A musical pulse; a steady heartbeat building for a gong's bong, together a prelude to the somber strings of violin in a mellifluously melancholic variant of Wutai's signature anthem. Louder and louder into climactic crescendo, beckoning the event they've come to witness as the tiny temple's aurora frenzies from what's roused within.

Hence all the instruments hush and the windows are opened to free a blizzard of what must be ten thousand flickering fireflies welcomed by gasps of awe and admiration for the multitude dispersing in all directions: some to fly far, some to flit close to faces for a friendly kiss; others hover and bounce, others swirl and pirouette, but all move with a personal hypnotism. So majestic; so mesmerizing; so easy to become lost in their sweeping shimmer...

...that is, were it not for the ripping roar of razing on the horizon.

In seconds the true pagoda, the honor of Wutai, is swallowed in a bright blaze of terrible, chapping heat. Its childrens' joy melt into horror in a heartbeat and it must be wondered from where their champion watches: one white rose named Yufi Kisaragi...

...as for her father...

Inside its top floor he stands centered in authoritative black robes with arms astride and unblinking eyes locked to the closed double doors while smoke stings his nostrils and throat, congregating in a bubbling mass above as everything burns with hungry crackles; a sword slung at his side he stands still, patient for the arrival of what can be heard downstairs: what comes heralded by the screams of his subordinates, the so-called legendary four protectors of the oriental capital; all of them food for the famished, all of them weak, so like trash they are each thrown out of the towering structure with a pretentious crash.

The first bounce of one who falls for stone steps releases the crispest of cracks; their body made to spin on downward course and strike the unforgiving stairs in a second bone-breaking crunch; and another, a pop of dislocation; again and again, a human-turned ragdoll until they roll to a stop at the bottom. Now a man-turned pretzel: a tender, bloody mess of meat, white-eyes, gaping mouth and hanging tongue whose throat has been ripped out.

Already their destroyer has learned so much from the sanguine buffet: each drop a bestowal of precious memories, all of them now lost to the owners, swept away in delicious death. And when they reach the final steps before the inevitable ingress of the infamous warlord, they slow, savoring the sweet seconds until the pair of sliding doors, seemingly immune until now, are also devoured by tongues of insatiable fire before bursting to empower the flames all around them.

Now Lord Godo may behold the longhaired dame of his demise whose icy azure stare nails him into place: a lithe female smiler with a dripping, bloody beard; lustrous black locks and glittery black kimono; comely facial curves framed by silken strands hanging down her drooping face.

She grins a fanged set of too many teeth, all of them glistery scarlet daggers which would make even Dracula covetous. But she is no vampire and she is not finished; indeed, far from it. He is handsome in royal black, silver-hemmed robes with his chiseled, face and goatee; his focused brow and spiky ponytail plume of black.

His eyes are intense and fierce but when they look into hers they soften; the man perhaps bewitched, she strides to him in powerful, prideful steps of snapping sandals atop tatami; he's unflustered as if to play nice will deliver him from recompense. He is obedient, allowing her to stand less than a foot from him; rigid, stiff so he may look down upon her crown of hair.

Then she lifts her face with a lustful leer and unchanged, glittery grin, canting her head left and right to let loose strands fall in alternating licks of her face. Soon the sway spreads down her spine in a bemused wobble of frame as if dancing to a soundless song only she knows.

Whether or not the missing kunoichi, now so vividly imprinted into her mind at behest of The Four, should appear, the movement is as sudden as a cobra strike.

Into the soft flesh of his throat those teeth enter, sinking the bottom row thru the carotid artery so she may slurp the coppery ambrosia of life and learn of unknown events since her slumber was shattered: first his greatest regret...

Sluuurp!

A peaceful evening, a different one within the center of a similar but larger and far more lavish room: gentle, glowy and presumably safe as the Four stand in each corner amidst wallpaper of black-on-white calligraphy scrolls offering insight into the man's many musings. Behind him is a towering, winged and winding seaserpent of glimmering gold who hangs over Godo protectively: Leviathan, god of Wutai.

Still it's an evening not unlike tonight, she'll find. Even in presence of The Four the silence is stifling; he should feel so powerful yet is so very nervous. One must wonder why it is he who trembles; why it is he who, at a muffled but scintillating scream from outside the room's large conjoined doors, gulps anxiously with a fast-drying mouth and throat…

There is no formal knock by the intruder; no, instead a shingingseries of slices across the ingress precedes an inward burst by a shrilling silver-black blur; so graceful, so quick, they're across the room in moments. It's only after cold steel painfully pierces his collarbone, clean thru, and pins him to the wall by a preposterously long blade that the wincing Godo may behold them:

And oh, how beautiful you are to behold…

His silvery head sunken and veiled by likewise long locks; his metal pauldrons and black leather agleam in that Kasumi-no-Kamae form -- a lefty -- and then he slowly lifts that face framed by those long bangs to reveal spellbinding feline eyes of tourmaline, a long, narrow nose and the most kissable, smirking lips.

And that voice… That deep, flinty voice… her heart cannot help but heat and flutter...

"I've come for your surrender… Godo Kisaragi…"

Blood has encircled the wound and the snarling simpleton replies, "I was hoping we could discuss that…"

That voice has humor."I propose..." They lift their face higher and cant it leftward, pushing that sword to cut in further. "Yield… or die."

"You're an impressive negotiator." A throaty chuckle. "Very well. I hereby surrender the war to the Shinra organization… leave with no more bloodshed…"

A bemused hmph and a single nod; "I accept your surrender…" A pull of that sword and it's free; Godo falls and palms his injury, watching the black-cloaked figure as they finish with a stern, "Farewell."

They turn to the exit and that sword rings because it is so long; his back covered in so much hair. Then they walk in a lengthy, prideful gait and disappear around the corner, out of her life bittersweetly...

Godo exhales sweet relief, still staring at the open door thereafter occupied by a peeking child in colorful, flowery kimono; half her frame seen but her emotions fully felt: teary-eyed anger; a quivering glower of sadness and shame.

Yufi's tears streak free and moves away, vanishing just like him to smash Godo's heart like glass; just like him: the man whose name befits a god and is at last hers.

Sephiroth...

Sluuurp!

Next, his proudest moment:

A hazy reverie sluggishly sharpens into focus; a de-pixelization revealing a certain Wutainese warrioress standing over his defeated, belly-grounded being with a helping hand extended for him. Yufi, her grinning face scuffed and dirty; hair unkempt; dark eyes wet in tearful joy cutting lines down grimy cheeks. She giggles, her voice high in youthful timbre as she says, "Looks like I didn't hafta kill you after all…" A tilt of her head. "...did I, Dad?"

She winks.

A bit of silence; then the pinnacle of parental pride melts his confusion from loss into chuckling jubilation at his daughter's victory. Then a celebration! A feminine woo-hoo! multi-toned cheers and claps of praise from the edge of the room where a curious band of eight spectate; each as unique as their appearance and dress infer:

"Yufi! Congratulations!"

The green-eyed, beaming brunette waves as bracelets gleam and jingle before hands hide abaft; she is gorgeous with her protruding bangs and curls; her black choker and red leather jacket over a sugar-pink button-up dress flowing down legs tipped by brown boots.

Aerith…

To the right is another lass of long black locks; lean, bosomy and less-dressed in her white tanktop strapped to an obsidian miniskirt while she stands in simple shoes; a single arm bent to rest gloved knuckles against her hip. Their brown eyes convey unspoken words, as if to say, 'never had a doubt'.

Tifa…

"Nice job, kid." says another scruffy voice. A blonde man in blue denim, white shirt sporting aviator goggles; he's rugged, as if older than the rest.

Cid...

"Well done," a cooler, raspier male chimes in. He is tall, pale; dressed in black and a tattered crimson cape; a flowing mess of darkest hair, a gold claw and a devilish ruby stare which would make lesser women shudder.

Vincent…

"Not bad for a daddy's girl…" adds a rough, robust tone as deep as their skin is dark. A tattooed monolith of vested muscle whose gentle chocolate hues are betrayed by intimidating, camo-panted stature and let's not forget the gun replacing one of his arms…

Barret…

Add in a dancing cat atop an overweight moogle, an orange-red dog laying watchfully with a whiplike fire hazard of a tail -- Cait Sith and Red XIII -- and who is left but the spiky-blonde in blue standing in wide military posture with arms folded at his chest; wielder of a behemoth brand at his back whose bluer eyes are unnatural but whose smile is genuinely warm -- proud of the victorious materia hunter as he gives her an affirming nod.

Cloud...

All of them friends; all of them dangerous; all of them no doubt future foes during this maiden's midnight massacre.

Until then...

Sluuurp!

A finale of fear:

Thereafter is a vision of calamity beheld from the pagoda balcony: a sky-melting fireball of apocalyptic proportions roaring in burning glee while it intrudes upon some far off continent. A dazzling doom bound for earth but clearly destined to fail, and in witness of such a spectacle only one name is upon its onlooker's tongue:

"Yufi…"

Like one snapping themselves out of a nightmare she blinks back into reality and continues to hold up the husk of a warlord only by her bite. A new wave of scorching heat slams them with want for water but there is no oasis to be found tonight which will not be mixed with blood.

Now three questions smolder as hotly as the structure around them: where is Sephiroth, where are those comrades and most importantly: where is Yufi Kisaragi?
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Hidden 1 mo ago 1 mo ago Post by All-Player
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Thirty-one minutes before the mayhem....

Yuffie, our main protagonist of this story, is getting ready for the festival. An annual gathering that happens every February in Wutai. Tourist from various regions come to take part in this glamorous night, filled with lights of many. Paper lanterns, small pyrotechnics and even the glow of the cosmos sets the mood. Of course it wouldn't be a festival without the merriment of music.

Violins riddling, taikos struck rhythmically, an assortment of brasses blaring are dulled by the walls of a room. Inside, sitting in front of a mirror, she's applying the finishing touches to make her ceremonial getup cohesive. Rouging her cheeks with dainty swirls, Yuffie sets the brush upon the vanity table. She takes one good look at her reflection, and admires the efforts she has wrought. Her kimono, palest of pinks, is embellished with a colorful imprint of Leviathan parting the seas from front to back. At the waist is a maroon sash tie matching her modern zōri sandals.

Normally, Yuffie prefers a more casual style to fit her tomboyish demeanor. But she'll make an exception for this occasion. Besides, she has matured a little since battling alongside her comrades against numerous terrors, and travelling the world as an WRO (World Regenesis Organization) operative. Those experiences opened up her eyes to everything around her. What she didn't appreciate back then; the notions of Wutainese tradition, have come to respect to it. All thanks to strengthening the bonds she has with her father Godo, and the pagoda masters over the years.

With a satisfactory wink, she gathers additional trinkets to wear before sauntering out of the room. One in particular is a bracelet she faithfully dons. It's molded from the technologies held within the WRO laboratories. Trouble is always lurking. Yuffie knows this to be a certainty. Being prepared is the cogitation of the wise, to mitigate danger if it should appear. Unbeknownst to her, that danger is soon to arrive.

Five minutes before the mayhem....

Yuffie has mingled with the locals and visitors for a fair amount of time. Even a few of her associates from WRO decided to partake in the festivities. They've witnessed two customary dances; one of prosperity and another that, eerily enough, depicts misfortune. No one, not even Yuffie, saw this as an omen. And why would they? Their very beings are brimming with fun and excitement. The worries of imminent peril isn't a factor at the moment.

Mayhem's solemn introduction is upon them....

What seems to be instantanous is a burgeoning blaze, casting off one of Wutai's great monuments. Specifically, the epicenter of the warrior spirit, and where Yuffie's birth as a kunoichi, amongst other things, began. The pagoda, in all irony, became the brightest light of the night. But unlike the festival, it doesn't bring joy and mirth to those in attendance. Screams and panic is what this disaster ushers to the masses.

Surreal. Yuffie is totally baffled. She just gazes at the flames absentmindedly as if it can't be happening. Like a film, her most cherished moments plays in her mind. Times where she endured rigorous training, got into mischief as a youngster, and defeated the pagoda masters for the first time. Though Yuffie can no longer stand motionless after seeing something horrific.

One by one, bodies flew out of the window. Yuffie hurries over to the burning building to find who they are; but deep down, she already knew. Gorky, Chekhov, Shake and Staniv, the pagoda masters, were all dead. Beaten to the point that their likeness is marred beyond recognition. Only the clothing they wore made them identifiable. The one that wasn't accounted for is Godo, the man who faces the bringer of tragic nights.

Replete with grief, which swiftly melts into anger, Yuffie disregards her safety and heads into the pagoda. Despite being aflame, the stairwell remains structurally sound. To preserve what's left of it, Yuffie begins her acts of heroism with a spell. An algid magic known as Frost, blankets the stairwell with a thick layer of foam-like substance. Eventually making its way to the bottom to extinguish the fire.

The bracelet Yuffie had put on earlier houses several materia. Some of which she's encountered on the job, going on explicit assignments. Such as the Zero materia, imbuing the caster with frost runes. The rest are those prized to her after Sephiroth's downfall. The materia, once plentiful before the war against Shinra, was also used to restore monetary power and status to Wutai sometime ago.

As she makes her ascension to the top floor, Yuffie continuously quiets the conflagration. She chills each level subsequently, up to the fourth floor with the Zero materia. At this juncture, though, passage to the highest floor proves to be more of a challenge. A segment of the staircase collapses due to the destruction laid upon it. Still, the pagoda remains intact, holding up for as long as it can.

Lightweight and nimble, Yuffie squats deeply and springs into the air with great height. A surprising feat due to how restrictive her kimono is for mobility. Because of this action, however, the kimono loosens its constraints. She lands into the upper room heavily, slowly making herself upright afterwards. Now looking forward, regaining a sense of her surroundings, Yuffie attest to the death of her father. His murderer, whose visage obscured by the length of black hair, stands before Godo's lifeless body.

Eyes welling with tears, Yuffie's world begins to crumble. The man she knew all her life is now gone; returning to the Lifestream. She's already angry about the pagoda master, the stress-stricken countrymen, but now...unadulterated rage floods her soul. With clenched fists, Yuffie prepares to exact her revenge by using the next materia: Armament.

Meanwhile, outside the pagoda, members of the WRO are rallying the civilians. They take them to a more secure location, far from the torching pagoda. Disbelief is seen on many countenances, wondering why--out of all nights--were they robbed of their happiness. But Wutai is resilient, and like countless instances before it, she will bounce back. Her premier ninja is on the scene, reestablishing the hope of her people.

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Hidden 29 days ago 27 days ago Post by Tasuke
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Think of the devil...

One impunctual daughter is heard and felt; joining the motionless murderess in this sweltering, razing, crackling room as if the question summoned them. Oh, the ache of hunger at another heaping helping of fresh, flavory life...

She doesn't know it's Kisaragi... but who else would dare brave the blaze? Who would forsake all safety and ascend into hell to hunt a demon?

Yes, they must be Wutai's hopeful heroine: the White Rose unknowingly come to attend her own shattering in witnessing the lacerating loss of the man who matters most! What a poetic prelude to their own fateful death; a destiny at work long before Yufi set foot within the smoldering walls and a climax to a horror patient in its pacing.

A cool, shivery sweat; the rushing high of adrenaline; prickly goosebumps! How tantalizing a prospect it is to drink the youthful Yufi! They will surely lead her to Cloud Strife and his merry band… to the tall, dark and dashing Sephiroth!

What heartfelt heat from that name and the thought of making him smile...

She grins with all those sparkly teeth, blinking blissfully betwixt her smoked spell of internal, contemplative romance as thoughts swim:

Oh, Sephiroth...

To be near you… at your side; to behold--to witness--your majesty and grace with words and with style and with that sword; to breathe your manly, robust, heavenly cologne: a scent worthy of my champion to apply as redolence…

To hear that voice...

To listen to the poetry of your story: your parents and your upbringing and your motives and your loves and your likes and your peeves and your hates and your regrets and your wishes; your turn-ons and offs and whatever else machinates in that mysterious mind!

Until then… and before we meet…

I will kill Yufi Kisaragi.


She loosens her jaw and with it her prize; Godo sloughs off her sinister shoulder, grazing the arm in frontal sprawl with a heavy, dead thud.

Her unseen tongue extends to lick those fangs clean, overwriting them with smaller, perfect pearly whites worthy of a toothpaste commercial before retracting so she may close widely smiling lips.

Then she thinks:

How, I wonder, would you reveal your face to a newly made nemesis? How would you say all you needed without words yet fuel their fire? How would you give despair before you envelope them in hungry flames which devour into ashes?

Or do I read you wrong and within your mystique is kindness and mercy... Would I not still complement your compassion with wrath or would you find me mistaken... wretched... even pitiful?

My dear Yufi, please... Tell me more....


Resolved, she turns her head to internal sound of laughter; recollective residue from a father's favorites: girly giggles and throaty bellows while she inches her portrait leftward into better view; one side revealed and affixing that lit, devilish stare upon the pissed-off princess amidst the loudening, cackling cacophony.

It fades slowly into the ambiance while she studies the ireful kunoichi; how she crumbles and withholds the teary need to wail and weep. Alas, not so easily broken, for Yufi is of strength and must balm her burns by felling her family's butcher.

Almost butchered, that is…

Now their father groans dryly and claws at the smooth tatami for grip, lifting his pale, ghoulish and white-eyed face at his beloved; soon pushing himself to a slouch of suspenseful seconds before he sprints at her in a craze of starvation, having his own mouthful of razory teeth.

Not unlike The Four, minus one, who also stir outside: ravenous and hungry for any human flesh in their midst; a trio hunting any and all they may find. The bringers of a horrible Halloween party whose bite will hastily transform their victims into brethren.

How Yufi is puppeteered to arrive at so agonizing an impasse: ignorant of and unable to help those outside yet desperate to destroy the damsel within...

She need only cleave down her own father to pursue insatiable vengeance...
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Hidden 29 days ago 29 days ago Post by Tasuke
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Tasuke Tifaholic

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Somehow I double-posted. I'll ask a mod to remove this...
Hidden 29 days ago Post by Tasuke
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And somehow I did it again...
Hidden 16 days ago 8 days ago Post by All-Player
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This night. This disorderly night doesn't desist from bringing more abomination. While the WRO members are swathing people with some semblance of order, a new threat awakens. The pagoda masters, revered as mighty gods in Wutai, had received the stamp of evil before their untimely deaths. Now they're nocturnal servants, doing the bidding of their mistress.

One WRO agent happens to catch a glimpse of the reanimated masters. She narrows her eyes, focusing in on them to peruse the situation from afar. Not long after realizing who they are, her vision widens with astonishment. She alerts two of her colleagues close-by, yelling "we have incoming!" At first glance, they aren't sure why their associate is on edge. To them, the shambling gods are just injured civilians in need of their help. The young woman quickly tells them something is amiss with the masters.

She explains to her compeers that she saw what happened earlier. Like Yuffie and many others, she was a bystander to Gorky, Shake, Chekhov, and Staniv being thrown out of the window. Having watched Yuffie run towards them, she does the same from several meters behind. It was after Yuffie rushed into the pagoda; the woman approached the quadriad with caution. They were so disfigured--so contorted, there is no way they could have survived. To see them up and about now goes beyond reason.

Additionally, she said she could’ve gone into the flaming pagoda to back-up Yuffie. The gravity of everything she saw was too much to bear. She, in lieu, decided to comfort the frighten tourists and the wutainese people in ways she knows how. “It’s apart of my line of work, after all.” With this put into perspective, the two WRO members understand what needs to be done.

They enjoin the woman to inform the other agents as to what's going on. They'll hang back and ward off the bereaved for as long as possible. In agreeance, she nods and sprints in the direction of the local pub, where the masses--a few of them--are kept in refuge. The rest fled to their homes for safety, which was ill-instructed by the WRO. They wanted to keep everybody together for obvious reasons.

Back at the pagoda, Yuffie faces a dissimilar plight of her own. The once reposed Godo is now approaching his daughter like a frothing beast. Seized with shock and bewilderment, the formerly rageful Yuffie is left helplessly vulnerable. This is displayed through her unclenching fists that hangs limpingly aside. The glower she has is replaced with despair, and already teary browns.

Time seems to slow to a crawl as she recollects on her past. Flashes of high and low moments she had with her beloved father. Especially the one from tonight, where Godo expressed his appreciation to Yuffie for taking part in the festival. Two hours before it began.

He knows she's a very busy lady. Having to be of service to Gaia and her children on a daily basis. For Yuffie to make reservations to accommodate her father, and Wutai tradition, delighted Godo. Also, as a commemoration to her deceased mother, Kasumi, Yuffie asks Godo if she can wear her kimono. After hearing this, nothing can make him happier than he is in this moment. Godo smiles from ear to ear, doing a cringe-worthy dance to display his jubilance. Yuffie, even though she's slightly embarrassed, let daddy dearest do his thing.

Fast-forward into the present, Yuffie comes out of her memorable trance. What she knows of her father back then is misrepresented by this ungodly thing. It may share his lineaments, but it doesn't possess what makes Godo...Godo. It's just a husk driven by predaciousness; to hunt and feed on anyone or anything. Much to her dismay, she must exercise extreme prejudice against this Godo lookalike. Her survival depends on it.

Enter the Armament materia...

A one-of-a-kind artifact, this silvery materia was created by WRO scientists. Its purpose is to supply the user with militaristic resources such as guns, swords, detonators, tech suits... the works. In Yuffie's case, she calls upon a couple of sentinels to her aide. They appear as holograms, flanking their summoner who takes two steps back. Both materialize instantly, moving in unison to assume a fighting position.

No taller than an average human, the sentinels are comprised of a light yet sturdy alloy. A precious metal called adamantite. They needed to be strong enough to take on tasks where their agents cannot. Such as physical feats that exceeds the limits of their human counterparts. Or--in Yuffie’s dilemma--to provide support when the situation calls for it.

Just as the corrupt man comes within range, the sentinels engage in offense. With their back turned to one another, they chamber their lead leg and thrust outwardly into a sidekick. Their heels impact the gut simultaneously, causing Godo to reel back with tremendous force. Enough to send him flying through the wall just meters away. The artificial duo reclaims a combative stance once again, taking stronghold to thwart all besetting dangers.

Meanwhile, beckoning her right hand with a wave, Yuffie casts frost unto the room. The cold snap deadens the flames that had engulfed the upper level. Transforming the inferno into a dazzling mist that fills the area. Yuffie takes this moment to relocate, concealing her whereabouts for a surprise assault. She is a kunoichi by trade, and trickery is what a ninja does best.
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