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9 mos ago
ying yang and all my pal
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9 mos ago
Do share those screenies!
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9 mos ago
Ratstick's my spirit animal
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10 mos ago
Oh, I was talking more about the status bar and all.


I run things from time to time, and exclusively write smut.

Maybe we can do something.

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Like hounds these grandmasters were, for when the White Queen called them superior, they nearly snapped right back in anger, but alas, every hound submits to a higher force; this flower of Ascendant youth were silenced with two words.

"I am Soaring Sunrise, master over the Sky Fist Sect!" said him, the oh-so-loud young man of a fearsome visage. "And in this, I say we speak as one!" His fellow sect-leaders would agree, "Your attempts to tame us are laughable, queen! If you defeat us in the tournament, we shall be there! And if not, then I laugh at you, for your city will be ours, as it already is!"

Soaring Sunrise turned away, leaving through a hole in the wall, his sect following. One by one these little gangsters left the field of battle. The only one that remained is Unfettered Serpent, with no small uncertainty. As many before her, she suddenly turns dour and timid when her fellows have left her. Words were stuck in her throat, words that Iko, the Blade that Sings, ached to spill forth.

Bloodily, if you catch my meaning. It was well known, I say, that she's rather short on patience, particularly for disrespect.
Les... boissons? What manner of word was that, wondered Unfettered Serpent. The young girl's eyes were narrowed, much like a serpent poised to strike, but ah, a fool she'd be if she dared strike the Empress now, no? Ha! The strike was one of doubt, and deep down, is there any blow worse than doubt?

By what right did a foreigner rule this city? The side of this outsider she took, for Serpent herself was one, and that uncomfortable truth dawned on her as she gazed back to her own crowd. Once fiery, the girl now was sullen, in a manner much reminiscent of a certain lad. Lad? No, man now.

"Hahaha! I sup... with nobody! Speak your condition, o' empress, not to me, but to us all. In the world of martials art, jianghu, we are all equal." All on his side agreed over these wise words, their spirit renewed; for they were a brotherhood that surpassed blood and lineage. This was a brotherhood of ability!
That was an offer not lightly given.

For the White Queen, Alexsasha of Ascension, daughter of the Sun At His Zenith is no lesser in the arts of warfare. Like a puissant painter, like a calligrapher drawing beautiful curves in black, she made of war her gift.

Yet... in Ascension, one's ancestors were a person's letter of introduction, a measure of their worth. The way of Lucille's warrior-ancestors, although known to us... is foreign to them. Alas, one of the girls was valiant, and dared into the unknown. "I'll take you up in that!" said her, and none else.

In the back of the chamber, one man laughed. "Does the Alexsasha know finesse in combat, however? It is said you fight with a blade most uncouth, but what about your body? Can that be turned into a weapon, asks I? Steel is not the way of our great Schools! Take her, good queen, take Unfettered Serpent, train her, and we'll see how much she measures up to our apprentices!"

"In the Descending Wood Tournament!"
Thus quoth the queen, and thus did the youth of her country snarl at her. "Yet, it is widely known that an army under your banner can live weeks on nothing but air!" It seemed like he would speak more, for his mouth lingered open like a taut bow drawn. The arrow he was going to fire, metaphorically, was stolen from him.

"It is that you fear battle, o' queen," said the fiery girl, "for you have lost your edge."

A silence fell upon the chamber like a blanket. An itchy one, doubtlessly you know the type. The redheaded Airfolk's gaze was strong, brave, not unlike the Zenith's own. Her arms were crossed, tensed against her chest. Chin high, brow furrowed in that silent dare, spoken only between warriors.

"Should I..."
began Iko, her words nearly a whisper, "uh, you know, strike her down for impertinence?"
I'm really goddamn nervous right now.
Hello, hello, hi, hi, hi.
"The way we act," spoke the fiery redhead, whose foe had been bested. The boy leapt to his feet, harmed, yet resolute in his stare. Was that stone or iron in his eyes? "is our regard for those lives lost! What is our battle, if not a celebration to the dead?" He was black haired, with a silky mane that reached his waist, tied up in a neat silver bun, eyes narrow, and brows that were like a form of art.

Valiant were their words in the shade of danger. The retinue that had come with the Empress were none other than her own bodyguards, those hand-picked chosen. War paints scarred their hauberks and masks, brilliant plumes of seven-colored feathers. One of them was a known face to us, but why not introduce her again? I speak of Iko, the Silver Sword, whose iajutsu was like a blur. No person had ever stopped her strikes. Alone, her green jade armor made her seem bulkier than she was, her near-innocent visage hidden beneath a menacing war-mask. Her presence alone seemed to hush the martial artists here gathered, like a gust will silence a fire.

She spoke no words, and needed none. The severe straits of these youthful gangster was evident. Some cowered, but not these two stars, that rose bravely before Lucille. "This... passivity of yours, o' queen, is the root of all these issues! Lead us into battle anew! We breathe not to be farmers and tillers! Our blood demands combat!"

"And battle we have provided," said one of the masters behind, silver and black wings unfolded. A black eyepatch covered an amber eye. His smile would be disarming to any woman, but alas, Lucille was not any woman. "can you blame us? What had to happen, happened."

I remember not the year, so I will not attempt to frame this. Far from the overwhelming Realm, far from the plains of Beltagne, even far from the Haltan League; in the distant North did this tale unfold. The Ascendants had been broken, yet at the Battle of the Seven Suns, the advance of the deathly horde was halted. A slightly uncomfortable stalemate reigned, for the Ivani clan held the southern marches against the occasional raid, while the rest of the survivors rebuilt their city anew, this time, in the banks of the Valley of Dandelions. Xavier, the son of the White Queen, was the first child born to this nascent folk.

New Ascension thus matured around the Cradle of Thunder, ancient war-manse of an old goddess. A year had passed, perhaps. Flowers bloomed with ease, but the Ascendants scarcely settled smoothly. They were miners! Their toil was stone, not wormy soil! They turn clay into artforms, craft grand palaces of marble, stone-like-silk and fire! Oh, and let us speak not of the overbearing sun and moon! What of trade? No clansman would willingly be a merchant, but here they come, these winged men of the clouds, with their tall frames, fluffy things and charming smiles. And coin, much of it.

They were frustrated, unfortunately. The youth that had followed Lucille saw themselves with a bitter drink to taste. The abandonment of the life that they had led took a heavy toll upon their faith. The new city had, then, a little bit of an issue. A small issue, no real concern. An entire generation of dispossessed youngsters with energy to spare. Like ice to a cocktail, the Airfolk brought in the second ingredient to this funbag. Martial arts.

You see, Ascendant warfare is a rigid thing. The clansmen of the high clans are the ones trained as warriors. Scale and mail they wear, great shields locked with each other, short stabbing weapons and spears. It served for the ant-nest that was old Ascension. It served for the majestic mountain ranges they dominated, but... as you well may guess, served not for the snow-dunes and valleys that made their new home. But these? The styles of the wind that the Airfolk brought to New Ascension were taken by the Ascendants like fish take to water. Schools formed, grew and gained influence in the city. Soon, merchants paid their respects to the local masters rather than government officials. Underground gangs were formed, fights broke out under the gaze of Luna.

There was strife under Lucille's home again, but I need not speak of this at all, do I?

There was not even time to court the local god-court during the first days of New Ascension, but now? A city-mother had been seen prowling amongst the streets, and a home was built for the charming goddess. She gave few blessings to the people that had yet to prove themselves worthy, but alas, this was a start. Her shrine was planned to be thrice-folded, with three roofs and three floors; all planned according to the theorems of sacred geometry. A grand project, to be sure, but lengthy.

And in the shade of lumbering, chiseled stone did four schools gather. No guards stood, no vigil was kept. The center of this shrine would be baptized by might. Challenges were issued, and rang though the empty halls. Adepts and initiates to the styles of the wind stood there, arrogant in their prowess. The masters watched from behind, wings folded. Indeed, many of the ones here towered over the Ascendants; bronzed skins, tattooed eyes and vibrant gazes. The Airfolk.

Two of them met in combat, dust rising in the wake of their blows. Her stance was aggressive; his was still like water, and like water wrapping around the strikes of the girl. They turned and twisted, grappling to the ground, and then back to their feet. And to this dance were the heavy gates of the temple flung open by a kick!

A booming sound. The gates crashed down. Somebody coughed from the hail of dust.

"The White Queen!" gasped the gangsters.

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