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cats are cute.

- 21
- slow writer
- slow reader
- orz

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t h e
f o r e s t

Without wavering, Yan Huiyin replied to Na Jiayi immediately, "Mmhm."

If not weak, then definitely a bit dumb, at least for wanting to take this challenge on so young. To prove her point, she plucked the bag from Na Jiayi's shoulder in a quick swipe. For a second, she considered it in her grasp. What all was there to bring on a camping trip? Surely nothing more than a blanket, right? Having came from an affluent family & having never slept in the outdoors, if Yan Huiyin had set off toward the forest by her own plan, there was no doubt that she would've brought much more than herself & a snack.

The younger girl let out another whine, reaching for her stolen bag. Like a playground bully, Yan Huiyin rose her brows & dangled it above her. In doing this, she added: "It's as Shixiong said: none of us are strong yet."

She didn't wait for a reply & slung the bag across her furred collar. Turning on her heels, she walked in Feng Tai's direction. Just barely turning her chin back, Yan Huiyin called, "Coming?"

Na Jiayi bit her lip, but couldn't find the strength to retort. That was her stuff! First her plums, now her bag. To Feng Tai, she now found him easy to play with, like one of her brothers, but Yan Huiyin was... distant & she'd never had a sister. Not someone she wanted to mess with. Shijie could have the bag if she wanted, so the smaller girl called after her, "Y-yes!"

With a nod, Yan Huiyin cupped a hand around her mouth to call after the boy ahead: "Shixiong, take care of us!"

Though she'd skipped her lessons โ€” or they were cancelled after that day's address; either way she hadn't been there to find out โ€” that afternoon, she could already feel the fatigue that came from a long day coming on. The urge to yawn was overwhelming her &, every so often, she'd succumb, muffling the sound into her collar. Were did the energy of these two come from? Had that Feng Tai napped? Knowing this girl, she likely did. Curiously, she squinted at the back of their forms.

She was the tagalong here, without a doubt. Still, she supposed it couldn't be helped. Yan Huiyin didn't feel any sort of kinship towards the girl, but she hardly expected the two before her to have exchanged many words prior to today. Were they all something of strangers? Their peak was only so big, so of course they'd all met before, but... effectively, she supposed they were. Right now, though a bit awkwardly, Na Jiayi was idly chatting to herself as kids often did, turning to gauge Feng Tai's reaction every so often.

Yan Huiyin bit her thumb's nail, as she darted her eyes between Feng Tai's retreating form & the girl beside her. No doubt could Feng Tai handle himself, but did he know how to use that brutish strength to protect others? Initially, she couldn't identify her reasoning for tagging along, but she supposed this was it. Tagging along tonight was infinitely better than to hear her name come up at the end of the next week in the address of deaths within the peaks. The mere thought made her feel heavier, her shoulders drooping a bit.

Not wanting to further depress herself, she skipped up to squeeze herself between the pair. A bit uncharacteristic of her usual composed self, but she was tired, alright? She rested her arm on Na Jiayi's shoulder & gestured ahead with her chin.

Still one of few words, her clarification came only as a single word: "The forest." For how vast it was, the forest could always have been seen from their walk down towards it, but only now did its trees begin to enwrap their path. They stood a little ways away from its entrance. marked by an archway overtaken by greenery: The Spiritual Beast Forest. At the top were the three characters engraved into a bronze nameplate, framed perfectly by twisting branches & vines.

"Alright," She started, turning to Feng Tai, "What's the game plan?"

๐•ฟ๐–๐–Š ๐•พ๐–Š๐–—๐–›๐–†๐–“๐–™ ๐•ผ๐–š๐–Š๐–Š๐–“
@chickadees x @miztli


Nearing the end of his life, the king of Vivell has realized that he has no heirs to pass his power to after he passes. So, he did what any reasonable person would do, and made Eloise, their most trusted servant, their heir. Suddenly forced into the limelight, Eloise must adjust to their newfound position of power and the politics and responsibilities that come with it. This decision has caused a stir among the other nobles, advisors, and those who had a vested interest in gaining power for themselves.

Thankfully (or maybe not), the new queen has been appointed some help.


Vivell is an economically strong kingdom due to its prime location at the nexus of the three kingdoms that surround its borders, meaning that there are plenty of major routes and crossroads taken by merchants, royals and commoners alike. Despite how it does not have any coastal claims, a major riverway that defines its northern border provides ample fishing opportunities. Rich land in the south was divided by King Linus early in his reign amongst nobles who, in turn, divided amongst farmers that they are in charge of. The rich forests in the west were also given to landowners to produce lumber, though a large section remains off limits to help preserve the lives that dwell in the forest, both wild and fantastical. The center of the kingdom is the key city of Minat that is almost entirely comprised of different merchant shops, both by merchants that live in the kingdom and merchants from other kingdoms given licenses to sell on Vivell lands.

Because of the division of labor created by King Linus, there is a strong noble class that has a vested interest in keeping the status quo. This also means that there is a large population of working class individuals in the kingdom, divided among the farms, forests and merchant towns. When it was announced that he was dying, nobles from across Vivell travelled to the castle - located a half day's travel north of Minat - to try and influence the king's decision in who should be the next ruler. This does not include the litany of advisors to the king who also tried to influence this decision. Now that a commoner has been made ruler, the once-bickering nobles and advisors have a common goal of keeping the state of affairs from changing.

The castle, located in a small town named Norus that is inhabited by families of the servants and knights and advisors that wish to live near the castle, sits on a sprawling property. The very edges of the property are protected by a high wall and, right behind the wall, a moat. The moat, however, is more like a miniature river in that it is home to some smaller species of fish, turtles and plant life seen along riverbanks. Guard posts are situated in intervals across the top of the wall. The castle itself sits in the center of the property, with a long, tree-covered laneway leading up to the house. The front of the castle boasts an impressive water feature and a circular drive for carriages. The castle has a traditional east and west wing, three floors, and a grand ballroom illuminated almost entirely by skylight situated at the center of the castle. Servants live in the east wing while the royal family and notable guests reside in the west wing. The entire backside of the property is covered in an extensive garden, featuring a tiny orchard and small hedge maze amongst its flora. To the east of the castle is the stables for the six horses that are the king's personal property and those that belong to the knights. The knights that protect the grounds reside in small cabins built close to the wall and most are hidden from sight by trees and other foliage.

I still like the CS format I first saw in TGM's 1968 RP. Linked below in a second.

Version One, there's an example and the Sheet Code


Oh, this is so beautiful! Thank you for sharing!
g a t e h o u s e s

Never before had Yan Huiyin found herself for a loss of words.

Today, that changed. From her mouth, came a sole 'uh!' sound, escaping her jaw that had dropped from pure shock. Her usually sharp mind blanked, not able to offer her any sort of retort to save face. Was she really being spoken to like this? Was this karma for even attempting small talk with this lout? Or had she perhaps truly offended him from throwing that plum?
Whatever it was, she wouldn't stick around to find out. Not where she so clearly wasn't welcomed. At a moment like this, she wished she'd studied a bit harder to have been able to take him up on that offer of showing him up in a match.
She jerked her chin away from his direction, not wanting to spare him a glance. If she had billowing sleeves, she surely would've shook them out in indignance. Instead, came the next best thing & so she flipped her hair with a 'hmph!' as she took her leave. What an awful day to have woken up for.

Yan Huiyin found herself lingering aimlessly in the plaza. Few crossed her path & she greeted them nicely enough, but ultimately, she was a hostage to her thoughts again.

How could that girl earlier have so thoughtlessly almost gone to the forest right after the address? Was she perhaps in there now? The thought to check did cross Yan Huiyin's mind, but... Truthfully, she was scared.

And then what? Would she follow along with a group, finding strength in numbers as she always had? What would happen when they finally came across a fruit? There was only one pit within each to present & surely they couldn't split it up; would she even have contributed enough at that point to warrant a piece?

However, the thought of going alone... It immobilized her. Every so often, she'd look toward the gatehouses & stagger. Surely, this was the true test, she thought. Finding the courage within oneself to venture into that forest. Still, couldn't she take a damn written exam? What of all the stress put onto the four arts throughout her childhood? What of the stories of those who found immortality through painting one damn picture in the mountains for over a century? What of them?!

Yan Huiyin, at this point, took to sitting on a ledge near the gatehouses. The darker it got, the more she tended to misstep on the uneven stone floor of the training grounds. To an onlooker, she was sulking, frankly. She held her cheeks with her palms, her collar up to her ears. A desolate sight, really.

"Yan Huiyin?" Speak of the damn devil, "A-Yan! Oh, it is you. Why do I keep running into you? You're gonna stop me again, huh? I-I'm gonna face you too, then..!" What was it with her sect siblings & challenging her to duels today? Just what had that elder inspired in her peers today?

Like a switch, Yan Huiyin straightened her back & breathed in deeply, feigning an appearance of having been meditating rather than moping. A faint roar echoed through the mountains. With a clear voice, she said out to the valley below, "Alright," & rose to her feet. Gently, she took the girl's hand & lead her to the gateway. Behind her was a dark, dimly-lit road to the forest & in front of her the girl.

Not a single other word left Yan Huiyin, but the meaning couldn't have been clearer.

"I, Na Jiayi, will get that fruit..!" This affirmation seemed more towards the little girl herself than for Yan Huiyin. Wordlessly, they took their formations. So that's her name, Yan Huiyin thought idly. No motion was made on Huiyin's behalf, so the smaller girl took to charging at her.

If someone else didnโ€™t step in, surely things were going to get real ugly, real โ€” Oh, never mind. As soon as Na Jiayi extended an arm, Yan Huiyin yanked it towards herself & twirled her into a light armlock, mindful of not letting the girl's face touch the ground. Effectively, their little spar was over. Minutely, Yan Huiyin felt herself deflate at the thought. Compared to the little match between those boys from earlier, this was nothing. Of course, that was to be expected; this girl was easily her junior. Yan Huiyan's mind immediately went the forest; would her ability be enough to face a beast on her own? Her form was clean, sufficiently practiced, but ultimately meant nothing if her opponent was severely under her own ability.
A sigh escaped her. "A-Yan..." The girl, whose face was mere knuckle's length away from the ground, whined miserably.

โ€Š .

Central Nahuatl

1. puma

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