[Closed] Aftermath

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Re: [Private] Aftermath

Postby Yuugi Hoshiguma » 20 Feb 2012 20:10

In a way, that curse was Yuugi's pride; and in a way, that pride was Yuugi's curse. The beefy shackle she wore on her arms and legs were, in a way, physical emblems of that dichotomy. Bindings, and yet symbols of strength. But it wasn't her way to worry about it - in the end, the shackles only served to prove that nothing could hold her back for long, and she was strong enough to carry any burden.

Carrying the burden of another was a relatively new experience; however, after having known Parsee for so long, she was beginning to feel it wasn't too shabby at all. Seeing the bridge princess so energetically wishing to change for her sake alone was a surprisingly enheartening experience, and the deva couldn't help another of her trademark broad grins. Privately, that clinched it for her. If Parsee was going to try for her sake, Yuugi couldn't do anything less than be there to help her.

And roll with the teasing, of course.

"Ahahaha! Hey, y'oughta be careful, y'li'l tyke," Yuugi replied, before reaching over to the side and taking up her sake dish again. Once more did she fill it, with a sake bottle she never did explain where she kept. "I ain't gonna get ya sweets, y'get too cheeky." She took a drink of the sake, then stood up straight again, and rolled her neck. "Y'sure there ain't nothin' I can help with on the bridge? Holdin' stuff in place for ya, somethin' like that?" The previous topic had been more than dealt with, and she felt no obligation to linger on depressing things when there was more enjoyable building and lifting to be done.
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Re: [Private] Aftermath

Postby Parsee Mizuhashi » 21 Feb 2012 17:21

Parsee is only too happy to follow Yuugi's sudden change of subject. Dwelling on it for any longer, after all, would be unfortunately awkward. Yes, it was best to move on.

Well, move on from most of it, at least.

"None at all?" She asks, looking pleadingly up at the oni with eyes that look for all the world like those of a scolded puppy. A moment later, she resumes her typical expression with a dismissive shake of the head. "Well, that's quite alright," she concludes. "I'm not sure if I can remember you bringing any in the first place. Not that I would ever think of stopping you if you happen to get the idea in your head, of course. As for help..."

She begins to walk away, only to look back at the deva for a few moments, stopping in her tracks. The bridge princess does not speak until she has turned away again, and only quietly at that, though she seems content enough. "Just stay here, for now. That's help enough; I can handle the rest. Besides, I should get back to watering the flowers in any case."

Having picked up the can again, she walks towards the waterfront, talking as she goes. "They've been here for... nearly eight weeks now," she explains. This was the first time she had shown them to Yuugi - it really had been far too long. "They were planted here by request as a... gift of sorts, I suppose." She pauses for a little while, filling the can before walking back up the rocky slope, only speaking again when she comes closer to the oni. This was not something she was willing to miss.

"I've been caring for them daily since then; a small reminder of my home. I have a youkai from the surface to thank for that." She pauses briefly, a faint, mischievous smile stealing over her face even as she attempts to sound as nonchalant as she possibly can. As if what she is about to say is completely inconsequential.

"One Kazami Yuuka. I don't suppose you've heard of her?"
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Re: [Private] Aftermath

Postby Yuugi Hoshiguma » 25 Feb 2012 19:16

Eh? She'd never brought Parsee sweets? Why that simply would not stand. Heck, maybe she could go up topside and learn to make them herself! Then she could have them whenever she felt like it. There weren't too many sweet-makers in the oni city she could think of off the top of her head. Ah well, something to worry about later.

The bottom line was, this had to be rectified.

If Parsee didn't want her help, there wasn't a whole lot Yuugi could do. But if her presence alone was enough, that was fine by her. She found herself curious about the flowerbed as Parsee began to explain about it, and never one for holding herself back, she stood up fully again and crossed the distance in a few broad strides. The deva towered over the sweet-smelling plants, but kneeling down was easy enough, and she reached out to brush fingers along one bloom with interest.

"Aah, these're real nice," she murmured to herself, taking another sip of sake afterwards on pure subconscious reflex. Half the time she didn't even seem to notice she was doing it. "Maybe I oughta start keepin' flowers at home, it's been ages. Ain't sunlight down here, but if I could get ahold o' that hell raven..." She was murmuring to herself, not even realizing she might be revealing surprising things.

Of course, 'Yuugi used to keep flowers' probably couldn't compete with 'This flowerbed courtesy of Mugenkan Enterprises'. It certainly didn't in Yuugi's mind.

"Yuuka y'say," the oni replied, her face lighting up. She hadn't turned her head from the flowers, but the one eye on Parsee's side had shifted to look right at her like a laser. The expression that had taken over her face was one of intense interest, with just a hint of another look that Parsee had seen only a little while ago in the city.

"Never met 'er. But I hear tell she's pretty strong." Griiiiiiin.

Uh-oh?
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Re: [Private] Aftermath

Postby Parsee Mizuhashi » 26 Feb 2012 15:47

Ah, Yuugi. Predictable as ever, and yet, somehow, Parsee never expected this. Still, the typical oni reaction was hardly her problem. Yuuka would be the one left to deal with that, and privately, she suspected that the two would get along rather well. That is, if they managed to survive for the first few minutes - all bets were off if those two were ever brought together, after all.

"Strong? Yes, I suppose you could say that. Certainly rather hard to break her grip," she recalls, wincing slightly. Almost immediately, the bridge princess walks off, speaking with her back turned to Yuugi as she waters the flowers. "Yuuka is... tiring. In the few weeks that we've known each other for, she's threatened to kill me at least twice, came within seconds of drowning me to death once, and insulted practically everything about me more times than I can count."

Every word is spoken in a completely conversational, casual tone, as if not one part of it was significant in the slightest. Even then, her next words seem to have little basis in common sense. "She's a good sort," Parsee concludes with a small smile. "Difficult, but decent enough. Not that you'll ever get her to admit that, of course." And somehow, for once, she says this with perfect sincerity and not the slightest trace of sarcasm. For whatever reason, the bridge princess believes every word of this.

"I'm sure it won't be long before you see for yourself, in any case. She's asked to meet you some time - assuming, of course, that you can find the time for that. With any luck, the two of you will even be able to go for five minutes without breaking anything. Meeting her is easy enough, in any case - she comes here every week, after all." She finishes with a small shrug, emptying out the remaining water before walking back to the river.

"I admit, I was told to expect a monster. Still, that doesn't mean a great deal any more. After all, we've been called the same often enough, haven't we? Of course, it gets a little harder when she tries so hard to maintain that impression, but that's another matter entirely. There's more to her than meets the eye, and the same is true for anyone else."
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Re: [Private] Aftermath

Postby Yuugi Hoshiguma » 28 Feb 2012 23:56

Hearing about Parsee's troubles with Yuuka was a little troubling for Yuugi; her expression dimmed just a little, but she quickly reminded herself that, whatever may have happened, Parsee'd clearly come through it just fine. She was here to look out for Parsee, not fight her battles for her, and it sounded like it had all turned out for the best, even. So she lifted up her dish enough to gaze at the nostalgic flower designs along it briefly, then tipped another swallow of the booze past her lips.

If there was something strange about being told Yuuka was a decent sort, the oni sure didn't notice it. Then again, she came from a society where 'decent sorts' would suplex each other through a wall at the drop of a hat. "Sounds like a pretty fun youkai," she decided, letting that grin back onto her face. "Lot o' stories goin 'round 'bout the flower youkai from the surface. If she's lookin' for Yuugi the Strong of all people... well, any oni gets an invitation like that and refuses it, they ain't an oni at all."

Technically, Yuuka's presence in the Underground was a violation of the agreement between the oni and the surface youkai, but if she was having a positive influence on Parsee, Yuugi wasn't exactly inclined to call her on it. However, that did lend to certain... ideas, quickly forming in her head. Yuuka probably needed no more excuses for a fight than the Deva herself, but all the same, it never hurt to have some pretense in case people asked.

And so, Yuugi stood up again, satisfied with her inspection of the flowers. She reached down to brush herself off, then straighten her shirt a bit, talking all the while. "Next time she comes down here, y'tell 'er I'm lookin' forward t'meetin' 'er myself. She can come visit the Former Hell, or I can come on out here, don't make much difference t'me."

Yuugi looked around, rubbing her chin thoughtfully. The place had been pretty wrecked by some of Parsee's recent clashes. With the Yama especially, apparently. She thought about it, then added, "...well, maybe it's better if she comes to the oni city. Don't know how well this place'll hold up when the two of us meet..." Not to mention how much more work it would mean for Parsee.

The thought that her and Yuuka getting into a rumble in the middle of the oni city would inconvenience a lot of oni didn't seem to occur to her.
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Re: [Private] Aftermath

Postby Parsee Mizuhashi » 29 Feb 2012 15:33

For all her theatrics - or jarring lack thereof - Parsee was, privately, relieved to see how well Yuugi had taken this. Though she might not show it, she was certainly rather surprised to hear that Yuugi had grown flowers in the past. Still, it didn't seem entirely impossible, unlike most of what had happened in the past two or three months. She would certainly have to pass that along to Yuuka, given how little faith she seemed to have in the oni; the look on her face would, no doubt, be worth the trouble by itself.

"Right," she answers, "I'll be sure to tell her next time she's..." The bridge princess slowly trails off, beginning to process exactly what Yuugi had said. She lets out an exaggerated sigh, muttering and shaking her head; a typical reaction whenever she realizes just what the deva was saying to her. "You... don't know how well the bridge would hold?" She asks, less of a real question than simple repetition for her own sake.

She gives the oni a tired look that stops just short of any real annoyance, asking what she had suspected from the outset, to some degree. "You're going to pick a fight with her, aren't you?" An entirely rhetorical question; she might have been a little more irritated if this brought her any real surprise, but that was far from the case.

"I would try something if I thought it would help, you know. I really would. Maybe explain what 'best behaviour' means, try to talk you out of it, warn her ahead of time, or even try to show you how to do something besides getting drunk, picking fights and looking after some cranky hermit of a youkai. I would do that and whatever else I could think of, but... this?"

She buries her face in both palms momentarily in a gesture of exasperation; one which just fails to hide a small smile of grudging amusement. "This is exactly what she would do. Hopeless, both of you. At least try not to get yourself too hurt, will you?"
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Re: [Private] Aftermath

Postby Yuugi Hoshiguma » 03 Mar 2012 20:42

Of all the things Yuugi could have been in response to Parsee's abrupt realization - guilty at being 'caught', amused at the reaction, eager all over again at the thought of a rousing battle with the Green Death herself - the one that came to the fore was probably unexpected:

The oni looked confused, and maybe just a little surprised.

"'course I'm gonna pick a fight with her."

She didn't add 'why wouldn't I', but her tone of voice made it clear as day she was thinking it. If they were both the type to enjoy it, why not?

The oni waved a hand casually, laughing a little with amusement. "Don't you worry 'bout me none, Parse. I'm used ta takin' hard knocks 'n' cuts as part of a fight. It ain't like my body's real fragile, after all." She rolled her arm demonstratively, as if to make herself look a little tougher. "T'be honest with ya, it's been a few decades since I really lost a limb. I've kinda forgotten what it's like!"

It was there that Yuugi stopped herself, because she was beginning to work herself up again. "Jeez, listen t'me. Gettin' all excited over a fight when I ain't got a clue when it's even happenin'. Ah, it really has been a good long while, hannit?" She eyed her sake dish, then topped it off, before slamming the entire thing in one long gulp.

And then she filled it again.

"I gotta calm down a little," she decided with a chuckle. "Can't help it, y'know." She looked down briefly, then, satisfied her spot was relatively clear, merely sat straight down, right there. "Thought of a good tussle gets the blood boilin'. Just tossin' disrespectful whelps through a wall ain't the same. Y'know the last real good match I had was with that Hell Raven? Nuclear fusion sure is amazin'."
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Re: [Private] Aftermath

Postby Parsee Mizuhashi » 04 Mar 2012 14:31

"Calm down?" Parsee asks, giving Yuugi a raised eyebrow, then a puzzled frown. "That's all well and good, but how am I supposed to recognize you if you do that?" She stares at the oni for a few moments, then nods to herself, apparently satisfied. "I suppose the horn will have to do for my only clue, then."

She quickly turns on her heel and walks away, walking over to the final patch of flowers before bending down to pick bugs out of the blossoms' midst. "I haven't seen anything the hell raven is capable of, myself - up close, at least. I prefer to avoid danger, not that anyone could guess that, these days." The bridgekeeper shrugs slightly, facing the deva behind her for a moment. "There's nothing for it, either way. Go ahead and have you fun, but at least try to keep yourself safe; I'm not quite as comfortable as you seem to be with all this talk of losing limbs."

With her work - as far as it concerned the flowers, at least - done, she stands up, surveying the ruined bridge and cluttered heap of supplies. One look was enough to tell her that this was going to prove an incredibly long day. Not that it mattered, of course. It never did. She looks back to Yuugi, with a somewhat apologetic smile. It wouldn't be too bad, at least. Her old friend was quite used to the bridge princess's little - and sometimes hopelessly large - quirks; this, most likely, wouldn't bother her at all.

"Sorry, Yuugi, but I think this is going to take a while. I'd appreciate it if you could stay a while longer, but... well, I'm sure you're quite busy, so don't let me keep you if you need to be anywhere else." She pauses for a few seconds, struck by a stray thought, then nods. Even a small touch of regularity was something she could easily appreciate. Knowing what was to come, even in part, gave her something to work towards, something to look forward to: Yuuka had shown her as much.

"Say, do you think you could find the time to come here again in a week from now? I don't mean to impose if you're too busy, obviously, but if you happen to have the time anyway, I should have most of this repaired by then. At the very least, it'll be a little more presentable."
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Re: [Private] Aftermath

Postby Yuugi Hoshiguma » 07 Mar 2012 22:13

"Ahahahaha!" Yuugi laughed openly at Parsee's jab; she'd set herself up for it, in a way. "Just watch for th' girl drinkin' everyone else under th' table," she suggested, still chuckling a little. "Don't fret none 'bout me losing an arm or two, though. We're youkai, ain't we? I'd be a pretty poor oni if I couldn't bounce back from somethin' like that."

Casually, she leaned back, planting one arm behind herself in order to get comfortable. It was very nearly a sprawling position, stretched out and lazy, the sort of posture that screamed 'I ain't goin' nowhere' without actually saying it. However, it being the particular oni in question, she didn't even think of her posture, so naturally she said it anyway. "I ain't got anythin' else planned, I was thinkin' I'd make today a break day. Might as well spend it here, eh?" And with that, her decision was made; it would take quite a feat - or Parsee herself asking directly - to get rid of her.

The future was another story, however. She rarely planned so far in advance. When she did, it was usually some 'project' or another she'd assigned herself, or some event she was helping with. Simply being asked to come visit for the sake of it in a week's time was somewhat out of the ordinary, but by the same token, it wasn't like it would be troublesome to fulfill. "Ah, hmm... ain't got any big stuff planned in a week or so, no! Think I'll be able t'manage that. Y'got anything in mind, or y'just wanna sit'n'drink for a bit?
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Re: [Private] Aftermath

Postby Parsee Mizuhashi » 11 Mar 2012 15:34

"Oh, I see," Parsee nods, agreeing immediately with Yuugi's assessment, wearing a small, sardonic smile of - at first glance, at least - relief. "Yes, I suppose any oni worth their salt can just walk it off. Go right ahead and maim yourself to your heart's content, then. You seem to think it's important." Whatever she might say, she is clearly rather less nervous now. It is, after all, as clear as day that the deva can survive worse than that, and most likely has quite a few times. Youkai were hardy enough.

When Yuugi finishes speaking, she blinks once, then twice, very slowly, doing her best to look thoroughly confused by the question itself. "Goodness, I need reasons now?" She exclaims, trying to seem distressed by the supposed demand, before dropping the act. Her expression looks a good deal more thoughtful now, her tone oddly contemplative, each word carefully chosen - more so than they usually are, at that.

"I want you to be here, simple as that. A little regularity wouldn't hurt, and neither would seeing you a little more often; it's been far too long, really. In a week, I should have the bridge patched up... well, enough to avoid being too embarrassed about showing it to you, at any rate." The bridge princess shrugs, then gives her friend a small, genuinely cheerful smile; rare, but less so with every passing day, now.

"Now, if I have to give you an excuse, I'm sure I can invent one, but it's going to take some time. I'll need... call it one week. How does that sound?"
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Re: [Private] Aftermath

Postby Yuugi Hoshiguma » 14 Mar 2012 21:16

Once again, Parsee's sarcastic humor set the oni to chuckling. "Hey, 'I feel like it' is plenty reason for most oni t'do..." Yuugi stopped for just a moment, trying to think of any limit to what she'd use that to excuse. "...just 'bout anything." She lifted her dish amiably, agreeing to the terms in gesture as well as word. "But if y'want me here in a week, then a week it is!" She'd have to see if she could come up with something entertaining to do, or bring along for that matter.

Maybe she'd get to run into Yuuka then, too. Or before then, even!

For now, though, she had a nice, lazy day ahead of her hanging out near the bridge. If Parsee didn't want her to help, the least she could do was offer a different sort of assistance - passing the time, keeping the bridge princess entertained. She thought about it for a moment, then sat up, grinning. "Say, Parse, I tell ya about that big fracas down 'round south gate in the city? I betcha this one gets a laugh out of even you!"

(And on that note, I believe this thread is at an end!)
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