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Fate/After Empty Fate/After

Post  EpicMasterMind on Wed Oct 02, 2013 4:51 am


Mikyo has long since become a hotbed of commercial and industrial advancement. While once a sleepy pass-over of a town nestled at the base of a mountain, the number of traditional Shinto shrines hidden in its leafy tresses proved a large draw for those whose inclinations toward the spiritual beckoned them thus. There they experienced a profound pristine preservation of culture in the serene atmosphere and beautiful backdrop of the town. That was long ago, mind you, years before word of mouth made the tiny city into a scenic hotspot.
With the tourist came the businesses and with the businesses came the revenue and with the revenue came the transformation. Over the course of a decade it evolved from a small gathering of lineages steeped in religious devotion to an ever growing modern metropolis. Those things that had served to catapult it to the mainstream of economic success were quickly dozed over in favor of another concrete monstrosity or asphalt abomination. No one noticed the dwindling ties to the heritage of the area, not as the lush valley disappeared beneath the steely heels of progress.
Not until the Nanjo Group declared their intention to save what remained of the historical landmarks. They began a vicious acquisition campaign to purchase land and rights, taking every effort to restore and preserve the mountain and its bounty. They used their clout to claim the vast area at the base of the mountains.   There they started a new controlled community which would serve as a buffer between the thus far untouched slopes and the advancing border of the city.
The success of the project was marked by the final declaration of a protected district designed to maintain the cultural landmarks originally responsible for the city’s economic boom.  The result is a clear dichotomy between what citizens have come to call “Old Mikyo” and “New Mikyo”.   The first is a rustic expression of a bygone era, a scenic residential era comfortably eased against the foot of the mountain.  The second is a harbinger of prosperity, a sprawling concrete jungle rife with burgeoning new businesses that dominate the skyline as powerful portents of the future.
That’s the common knowledge: the spark-notes, easily digested, back of the brochure version.  What doesn’t go into the tour-guides is this.
Mikyo sits atop a vast crossroads of mystic energy.  A vast collection of spiritual tributaries formed by the tightly woven network of shrines and temples, they form a particularly powerful leyline supported by the generations of local faith and the centuries of their belief.  It forms a veritable font of power that teems between the physical and supernal.   The Thaumaturgical possibilities did not go unnoticed for long.
The first pilgrims to the area were those Mages who wished to conduct their research with the bounty of resources offered by the leyline in the relative peace offered by the quiet little village.  No exodus, however small, goes unnoticed and this was no exception.  Curious, the Apostles followed and with them came the Church and its executioners.  The only thing that prevented the area from becoming the first battlefield in an all-out war was the arrival of the ordinary.
The flow of outsiders spread beyond the boundaries of the world behind the veil as the mass influx of funds saw rapid changes and developments.  The town grew overnight.  A combination of tourism, the arrival of new businesses, and outward development supplied the once quiet area with a bustling, new age economy.  It wasn’t long before Mikyo’s unchecked growth began to threaten the very source from which its success originated: the leyline that flowed beneath the land like blood through veins.
The Mages Association stepped in with the creation of the Nanjo Group, a coalition of public corporations that supplied the Association with funds.  Under the guise of preserving cultural heritage, they took swift and decisive action in preventing the leyline from being disrupted.  The campaign proved a success and the land’s spiritual active has remained untouched for decades, pure and perfect.
Perfect, that is, as the next battlefield for the Holy Grail War.
A war not between nations or ideals, but seven individuals, seven magi deemed worthy of vying for the ultimate prize—the Holy Grail itself.  It is said to be within the Grail’s power to grant any wish, to make reality any desire that haunts the human heart of captures the imagination if its owner.  To that end, they are armed with the only weapons worthy of warring for the Grail.
Servants.  The legendary souls of the heroes of yore recalled and remade by the Grail itself.  They are more than familiars or spirits.  They are the realization of a miracle, beyond the scope of what is possible through modern thaumaturgy.  Beings of almost limitless power made real, divided into seven categories—or classes—based on the strengths that made them legends.
Saber, King of the Blade.
Lancer, Warrior of the Polearm.

Archer, Master of the Bow. 

Rider, Lord of the Steed.
Assassin, Death from the Shadows.

Berserker, Mad Beast of Battle.

Caster, Wielder of Thaumaturgy. 

Masters, summon your servants and prepare for battle!

The stairs were rough but even.  A stone affair that winded its way under a comfortably shady canopy, they were clean and well maintained.  The thick forest on either side proudly displayed its autumn plumage and the sounds of nature rolled along the gentle afternoon breeze, disturbed only by the rhythmic tap-tap-tapping of an old man’s cane in a young man’s hand.
James Halloway-Tohsaka was known for having the gait of a man thrice his age and the enthusiasm of a child half.  His three-piece suit was flawlessly arranged like unblemished snow glistening in the morning sun.  It hung about his athletic frame like the soft embrace of angelic feathers.  Dirty blond hair—barely arranged just short of his shoulders—fell about an angular face, perfectly accentuated by sharp eyes the color of the sea foam in a rolling wave.  His left brow sported a deep scar that nicked it nearly in half.  He was handsome, in a rugged sort of way, his features sharp and predatory, lupine even. 
He favored his right leg and leaned heavily on his pommeled cane every time he used his left.  Like that, he hobbled along at a comfortable pace, enjoying a rare commune with near as untouched nature as existed anywhere in the world.  It was too slow for the liking of his companion.
Rin Halloway-Tohsaka, unlike her husband, was all elegant curves and plastic smiles.  A heavy tan coat clung to her shoulders, all billowing folds over a functional black skirt and warm crimson turtleneck.  A slender neck emerged from the collar to show off soft porcelain skin, pale and unblemished.  Raven hair tumbled to the small of her back in a silk cascade that burgeoned on a decadent luxury.  Parted bangs framed a pair of large aqua blue eyes that sat under thin, carefully groomed brows.  Her face was a portrait of delicate beauty and her features possessed of a rare dignity.  She carried herself with an almost regal air.
She glared daggers at her husband as he hobbled along and, when he noticed, her husband returned a smile as pleasant as the fall aroma carried by the wind.
“I’m beginning to think,” James breached the silence, “that you picked this place on purpose.”  He tapped his cane a little harder to punctuate the statement.
“It’s possible,” Rin returned with practiced ease.  “I had to get you moving somehow.  You were starting to show a little paunch, dear, and I was afraid you might blow up like a balloon if you sat around much longer.”   Her voice was sweet as the honeyed scent of spring but it rolled over the man like the frigid gusts of winter.
“That paunch,” he feigned indignant as he battled up another step, “is something to be proud of.  Sign of good health.”
Rin jabbed a finger hard into his gut, “Sign of a sedentary lifestyle, maybe.”
“Maybe,” James allowed with a smile and a laugh.  “But we’ve all got flaws, right?  Being an overly critical killjoy, for example.”
Rin turned a sickly sweet saw-edged smile and replied, “Better than being the kind of pervert who marries his own student.”
“Ah,” supplied his razor sharp wit.  Then his smile softened and he added, “But she was such a beautiful and graceful and brilliant and beautiful girl.”
“Is,” James corrected.
Rin shot him a sidelong glance, “You said beautiful twice.”
“I meant it twice,” he said.  “Those—well, you can barely call them skirts—were half the reason I married you.  You, uh, you didn’t happen to pack a few, did you?”
This time she elbowed him in the side.  Not hard enough to throw off his balance, it was a symbolic gesture more than anything. 
James thought it best to change the subject before she decided the stairs would make a convenient murder weapon.  “So,” he said, “why’d you choose this place?  A little high up for my liking.”
“It’s an old place,” Rin told him.
“The kind of place where things tend to accumulate.”
Rin nodded, “That’s right.  Plus, it’s well situated.  The top of the mountain should give us a good vantage point to learn the lay of the land.”
James fought back a smile, “Isn’t there a better way to figure that out?”
“A map,” he offered with a wolfish grin.
“You know what I mean,” she said around a sigh.
“Sure,” James admitted.  “Problem is, the war might be over before we reach the place.”
Rin scoffed.  “You’re the one slowing us up,” she said.  “It’s a slow pace, even for you.”
“Fair enough,” James nodded.  “To be honest, I was just taking the time to enjoy it.  It’s a nice place.  And,” he saddled a little closer to Rin, “I happen to enjoy the company.”
A little blood rushed to her face and painted her cheeks a scarlet hue.  “Whatever you say,” she suddenly found something very interesting to look at in the surrounding woods, “just pick up the pace, alright?”
“Maybe if you gave me a hand, I could.”
“Fine,” Rin almost snapped.  Then her hand was over his, slender delicate fingers woven together with her husband’s in a tapestry of flesh.  “Let’s—let’s just hurry up.  You’re wasting time, you idiot!”
They took their time to walk hand-in-hand to the top.
By the time they neared their destination, the sun had already begun its final descent.  The forest thinned as they approached the summit.  The stairs began to level off as they stretched toward a wooden archway.  It was a simple, unadorned affair that seemed as much a natural part of the landscape as the trees themselves.  Leaning against the edge of the threshold waited a single figure that stirred only when it saw the pair approaching.
Her hair was like threaded moonlight set aflame by the setting sun overhead.  It fell about her shoulders  and to her waist in great rolling waves, luminous with a milky glow shamed only by the pale splendor of her ivory skin.  A sweet smile played across full lips the color of fresh berries; every bit as lush and inviting.  Her eyes, perfectly almond shaped, were a blue such that the sea and the sky both seemed the lesser by comparison and the face which framed them was without compare.  There was strength in her visage, pride behind her eyes, and above all, power in every little motion.
When she stepped forward, she did so with a sensuous grace in the slight sway of her hips.  She was easily taller than Rin with more generous curves accentuating a more than modest bust.  Her spaghetti strap shirt and jeans adhered almost perfectly to the natural lines of her body, concealed only in part by the denim jacket that was draped almost carelessly over her shoulders, more a cape than a coat.
The woman waved from the top of the stairs, “Hail thee, Master!  Welcome.”
James leaned against Rin in order to wave back.  “Saber,” he called, “glad to see you made it.  How’s the place look?”
“Excellent,” Saber replied.  She strode down to the meet them with the confident air of a conquering king.  Falling in line with the others, she continued, “The Lord seems an honorable sort and the halls of his keep are large enough for our purposes.  Still, it is a curious place.”
Rin chimed in, “How so?”
Saber went on to describe the lacquered woods of the halls and the paper mesh of the doors, the people scurrying this way and that in an effort to keep everything tidy.  She spoke of the strange beds that weren’t really beds at all, of the low tables, and the almost complete absence of proper chairs.  Mostly, she lingered on what the others explained to her was an open-air bath behind the establishment.  It seemed a great oddity to her.
The group crested the top and James finally interrupted his Servant’s spiel.  “It’ll do,” he assured her, “it’ll do.  I’m just glad you like it, Saber.  We’re going to be here for a while.”  He paused at the top of the stairs and turned to face the direction they had come.
The Mikyo skyline stretched out before him.  A great expanse of forest slowly gave way to asphalt and cement.  In the distance, industrial skyscrapers loomed across the landscape.  A few lights began to blink on here and there as the sun finally dipped beneath the horizon.
“Nice place,” James said again.  Then they were heading down the path toward the doors of their new lodgings.  The words Daidouji Inn stretched across the entrance—James had rented out the entire place.


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Fate/After Empty Re: Fate/After

Post  Magoo111 on Thu Oct 03, 2013 12:30 am

The eclectic olfactory cocktail of formaldehyde and fetid corpse was far from pleasant perfume. The morgue was at least sterile, stainless steel devices and white tile floors scrubbed after each body was opened up and examined. It was one of the nicer morgues in the world, though a morgue could never be called nice.

“You must me kidding me? I'm here to play consultant for a few months, not play substitute,” Priscilla Mort said to her Japanese compatriot, giving the man a frustrated glare as they walked down the hallway. She was an elegant sort, tall with substantial legs and a delicate build. Too many hours spent in in the company of flickering florescent have given her pale, almost ghostly skin. With hair a deep german chocolate shade, to use the word haunting to describe her would not be far off. The chocolatey strands were pulled back in a messy bun, a few strands falling loose and just slightly covering the rightmost of her hazel eyes.

She clacked softly as she walked, her choice of black boots having the slightest heel of them. A pair of gray slacks loosely swished around her ankles with each step while her slender arms were left bare from the black turtleneck top with a grey scarf accompaniment. She was fairly devoid of color in her dress, save for the four earrings in both ears running along the top and side of the outer ear. Tonight, half of them were red and the other half yellow on both ears, though she often changed colors.

All the same, she was a woman who believed in the body's use as a canvas: her left arm was covered in a lace of rose bushes, colors fading from red to purple from her wrist to her shoulder. Her right was similarly tattooed, though it was an intricate series of vines holding three spherical orbs down to the elbow as opposed to flowers all the way down. Today the orbs were white, though she had a tendency to paint over them as her mood changed. Sometimes, she changed colors midday.

“I am sorry. Hitake-san is very badly sick this evening and we needed a routine check performed on the deceased. While the death is expected to have been natural causes, there is a family dispute that is causing one of the children to claim poisoning,” the shorter Shoji Kondo said, bowing once. His English was impeccable, though he often dropped between English and Japanese when speaking with Priscilla. He was a proper sort, dark suit, blue tie, trimmed hair. Comparatively, he looked plain, but on his own one would call him handsome.

“I am just giving you a fuss, Shoji. You know I like when I get a chance to actually do work here,” Priscilla said with a slight upturn of her lips. As the two entered the mortician's room proper, Priscilla pulled a smock from the wall to cover her clothing with.

“Giving me a fuss?”

“Giving you difficulties, for the sake of entertainment,” Priscilla clarified, nodding her head once to Shoji. His eyes lit up a bit, a soft acknowledgment leaving his lips, before he turned away.

“Regrettably, the body is still needed in one piece, so you cannot have it for your medical research. As usual, take as long as you need to confirm it is a natural death. We will test the fluids that require testing tomorrow,” Shoji said, bowing again before leaving the room.

It was a fully sterile environment, with a wall for body storage on the far end. The cadaver, one former
businessman named Watanabe, was already prepped out on the center table. Priscilla drew back the white cover from the corpse, shaking her head a bit to clear the dust from her nose. With gloved fingers, she lifted the right arm, looking at it thoughtfully.

“Mmm...would not have been good anyways. It would be difficult to transmute away that much fat,” Priscilla thought as she put the arm back down to the man's side. She could tell at a glance poison was unlikely: the man looked generously healthy, even in death. A man of his size would have had to consume a large quantity of the typical poison, or something incredibly more deadly, to have died as quickly as he had. Dying during an after meal nap thirty minutes after consumption? Unlikely, for such a fellow.

He was convenient for her needs this evening. With a scalpel, she calmly incised the cadaver's chest. She would need to in a moment anyways for her job, but right now she needed some blood. She grabbed a cotton swab from her supplies and dabbed it around in the body, getting a bit of blood.

“This will probably take a while. I should probably multi-task.”

Fifteen minutes later, Priscilla was fairly certain poison was not the cause of death, as there was little in the way of external damage caused by chemical consumption. Still, she had bottled up a few fluids to send off to lab techs to tell her how right or wrong she was.

More importantly, she had drawn a rudimentary summoning circle on the floor nearby. She was not too worried about clean up: she had already messed up the room a bit to claim that the cadaver had flopped and she could easily rub the circle into a veneer of blood once she was done with it. She was worried about if she had drawn the circle properly. It was sloppy, with crooked lines and imperfect symbols. She did not even have a good catalyst: she was throwing the dice of fate, as it were.

She stood in the circle, shaking out her arms a bit. “This is absurd. Who ever heard of a coroner with half-assed mystic codes becoming a master?” Priscilla found herself wondering as she exhaled slowly, extending her left arm. All she had to do was focus on the summoning, complete an incantation, and get who she got. It was simple, really.

“Ye first, O silver, O ste...iron, O stone of the construction,” Priscilla started to chant, though she knew she was getting it wrong. It was supposed to be foundation, right? Or did she even start it right? Did it actually matter?

“Let thy body rest under my dominion, let...oh bugger this. Good spirit, come down for a spot of tea. We'll have a jolly old time of it, maybe get in a fight or two, and see where we end up. Watch my back, and I'll watch yours. I make this oath with you, whoever you may be, so let us move forward in jolly cooperation!” Priscilla finished, spitting in the face of tradition. She hoped, as the circle glowed and prana burned rapidly away as part of the summoning, that she at least got a servant who liked tea, if nothing else.

The summoning was mercifully quiet. Or perhaps it was too loud for human hearing. Either way, there was no thoroughfare, no fire, no explosion. There might have been a crack of thunder, though it was equally likely it was going to storm that night.

What had changed was the air in the room. It had been heavy during the casting, but now it was lighter since the summoning was complete. Another key change was the giant of a man standing in the morgue with her.

The man stood tall, about as tall as the door frame, if not a hair taller. Broad, statuesque shoulders threatened to burst from under jade green robes, an ornate iron pad on the left shoulder. Gold trim ran along the hems of the robe, with red accents along the bottom of a black under-tunic Underneath the robe was dark grey armor, with accents of red and gold on the arms. Upon the man's head sat a green turban with a royal gold circlet, inset with a ruby. His face was lightly bronzed and strong, dark eyes piercing the dim light of the morgue. From his face fell a waterfall of deep black hair, cascading down the center of his chest.

“Your lack of respect for protocol is peculiar. Regardless, I ask if thou are my lord?” the man asked, raising one hand to Priscilla. Even talking at a casual volume, his voice was simply booming. Priscilla, too surprised to respond, just nodded.

“Very well! I pledge my service to you, my lord, until such a time as death takes me or we are victorious! My blade shall claim the heads of your foes!” the man said, clasping fist in hand and bowing the top of his head to Priscilla.

“That...sounds wonderful. Do me a favor: smudge the circle around some so it just looks like a blood spill, then do that invisible thing you spirits do while I finish up here. Once we get home, I'll brew you that spot of tea,” Priscilla said, motioning with her fingers to the corpse and room around them.

“That sounds delightful. I shall eagerly await our tea time,” the giant responded, nodding his head.

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Fate/After Empty Re: Fate/After

Post  Cremator of the Sky on Mon Oct 07, 2013 4:33 am

OOC: Epic, I apologize beforehand if this isn't good. Just wanted to get it done as fast as I could.

Mikyo, Japan, a city of promise and potential. The Shining Star of the East, the town of tomorrow, and many other names like those. This city was a beautiful and remarkable example of mankind’s ability to grow and expand their surroundings. Of course, there was more to this city than its size and history, much more. This town was to be the site of a conflict known as the Holy Grail War, a conflict between seven individuals and seven legendary heroes of mankind’s past. Of course, not all was well, at least for one its participants. In fact, this war was the worst thing ever to happen to her.
In fact.
Let’s go check on her right now.
It was a typical morning, a mostly clear sky with a shining sun and a collection of clouds of various sizes spread out. It seemed another peaceful day was at hand for the city of Mikyo, of course, some people were having better mornings than others. Case in point, the scene of our distressed war participant in her bed at about 8 AM. Ada was tightly wrapped under her generic white sheets within the apartment she was currently living in, her room being nothing special with its sky blue walls, ceiling, and its wooden floor. However, the young girl was tossing and turning every five seconds or so while muttering something to no one in particular, of course, it’s not like she was alone. For suddenly appearing at the girl’s side was another girl around the sapphire haired girl’s age, but she wore a cloak as black as the night sky itself and possessed purple eyes emptier than an abyss.
“S-Stay away from me…” The girl known as Ada whined in her slumber.
“…Master…” The soulless girl said.
“N-No, get away from me!” The longhaired girl would toss and turn.
“Wh-Where’d you get that rope? No, stay back!”
“How’d you tie my arms and legs up? This isn’t possible, it can’t be happening!”
“No, keep your hands away from me, you pig! I’ll… I’ll…”
At this point, the soulless girl reached out with both her pale hands and placed them over the other girl’s chest, lowered the hands, and then applied a firm grip. Needless to say, the following loud and terror filled scream from Ada was expected. After that though, the girl in bed was now awake and sitting up, albeit terrified and shielding her chest, despite the fact she was wearing a plain white nightgown.
“Good morning Master…” The cloaked girl said.
“A-A-Assassin…” Ada said, now shivering and still shielding her chest. “Wh-What did you do?”
“I woke you up the only way I knew how to…” Assassin replied.
“Th-There wasn’t any other way?” Ada was VERY red in the face, flustered and embarrassed, with more emphasis on embarrassed.
“Well Master, I couldn’t have poured a glass of cold water on you, that’d be very suspicious to explain to the cleaners considering you’re living here alone,” Assassin began. “And I simply couldn’t strike you in any sort of way Master.”
“A-And you couldn’t wait?”
“Your nightmare was getting worse, and calling your name didn’t work.” The emotionless voice had quite a lot to say.
Ada would simply whimper as she got out of bed and walked over towards an opened closet door straight across from her bed. There she reached into the closet and pulled out her usual attire of a plain white T-shirt and a long black skirt… but both didn’t fit well as evidenced after Ada made the change in clothing.
“A-Assassin,” Ada began, her face a lot less red then it was before, “never grab me there again.”
“Then shall I wake you using you other sensitive areas?” Assassin asked with an adorable tilt of the head.
“What do you-!” Ada got her answer upon feeling a single hand stroking up and down her rear and thus, bolted away from Assassin, who was now behind her. “An-And don’t do that either!” Ada’s face was back to being as red as it could be.
Assassin’s head would tilt again and she would ask, “Then… How shall I wake you if you have another nightmare, Master?”
“D-Do something else, just don’t do that.” Ada replied, slowly but surely calming down. She would then sit back on her bed and on the nightstand a couple inches away, was a simple black digital clock showing the time as 8:05 AM with an ordinary pair of glasses sitting upon them. Ada would swiftly pick the glasses up and equip them, feeling satisfied knowing her magical ruby eyes would be just normal ruby eyes as long as she wore the glasses. To many, having a pair of Mystic Eyes would be a really cool thing. To Ada Graves, they were a curse. For she had been born with Mystic Eyes of Charm, a type of Mystic Eyes that upon eye contact, would make any man, and perhaps some women, see her as a highly desired woman of great sex appeal.
With her Mystic Eye Killers on, Ada went on to make her bed as best as she could and then sat down in one of the few chairs within her apartment before sighing. This whole thing began roughly a couple weeks ago when the Sea of Estray had assigned her to observe the Grail War that was about to take place in Mikyo. Simple enough just keep tabs on everyone and report her findings. Well, they also gave her a list of names of possible candidates involved with the war, and only one of them she was able to meet with.
He was a rather arrogant fellow by the name of Moganji Kotetsu who was rather adamant about letting Ada observe his summoning ritual. So she entered his house, he kept going on and on about how he was going to summon a powerful Servant from one of the three knight classes. You ever get the feeling the person you’re discussing with has no idea what they’re doing or about to do despite all of their passion and plans for it? Yeah, that’s the situation Ada was in. And judging by current events, you could say that everything went up in spectacular flames, well for Moganji anyway.
The two went on to enter his basement that he had prepared for the ritual. And so, with Ada watching, he went on to start up the ceremony and on to go about doing everything typical of a summoning ceremony. And this is exactly when the whole thing went up in his face. For not only did Moganji fail to summon a Servant of any of the classes he desired, he didn’t even wind up becoming its Master! The Command Seals that should have been his went to Ada instead; probably due to the fact Ada had quite the amount of mana within her in comparison to Moganji.
Between him summoning an Assassin instead of one of the Three Knight Classes and Ada becoming the Master of Assassin instead of him, Moganji kind of snapped. He then went on to draw a knife, fully intent on taking the seals now upon Ada’s left hand for himself, only for Assassin to spring into action and kill him by grabbing his head and then somehow causing it to explode leaving only a pair of severed arms and his lower body behind. Ada was of course, horrified and went on to scream as Assassin identified herself and explained to Ada about the Holy Grail War. And Ada only continued to freak out now knowing she was a part of the very thing she was only told to observe. Between the murdered Moganji and being dragged into the Grail War, Ada couldn’t think so thus, Assassin did her best to get her Master out of the basement and into a secluded area. Of course, first came covering up the summoning ritual to make it look like a mess of blood and then destroying the rest of the body and then getting Ada out of the house without notice.
Against all odds, it had been done without a hitch and the two managed to retreat back to Ada’s apartment where Ada immediately tried contacting the Sea of Estray for help… only to be dismissed with laughter and a “Nice knowing you Ada”. After that, Ada had been in her apartment room for several days, simply in a shock and completely fearing for her life. Assassin tried to do as much as she could for her Master, she truly did. Time however, was the real cure as over the past two days, Ada had been recovering. Of course, Ada would need more time to truly recover, and sadly, being in a war wasn’t exactly the best thing for that. And that brings to where Ada is right now.
“Master, maybe you should go downstairs and get some breakfast?” Assassin asked, breaking the silence within the room.
“Yeah, you’re right Assassin, I should go eat something,” Ada said getting up and leaving her room with Assassin following her vanishing into Spirit Form as she did so. Today would hopefully be a much better day for her Master.
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Cremator of the Sky

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Fate/After Empty Re: Fate/After

Post  Zeldaman2.0 on Tue Oct 08, 2013 2:17 am

Sighing for perhaps the fiftieth time already that day, Jacqueline hurried after her guardian as he darted off in a sudden new direction.

The man in question had darted off in the direction of a nearby diner, eager to slake his hunger and find a spot to do a little bit of research before heading off on important business. He quickly entered the establishment, with Jackie just steps behind him. Neither of them spoke to each other for a while, instead waiting to be seated in a Western-styled restaurant. The waitress quickly approached them and offered a smile, but held back a quizzical look at the two of them.

The man in question was of average height for a Westerner, with light brown and exceptionally curly hair, eyes that seemed a tad unnatural shade of green, and a lopsided smile. The man was dressed in a simple white button-up, sporting a light brown leather jacket, and a neat, black tie. Complementing the look were a pair of khakis and loafers, on which he was excitedly bouncing around from foot to foot.

The girl next to him looked a little strange for typical day wear, but nothing too unusual for a city in Japan. She sports long, jet black and straight hair that extends to her waist. Appearing to be about ten, she wears a rather tight-looking outfit consisting of a strapless and sleeveless black shirt, black gloves that extend halfway up her forearms, a flowing indigo skirt, grey stockings, and black boots. The outfit accentuates her growing body quite well, the waitress notices with an inner raised eyebrow, but says nothing and redirects her attention back to the man before, hopefully, her gaze lingered too long. "How many will you be seating?"

The girl answered quickly and curtly, "Two, miss." The waitress looked back at the man for confirmation, who only nods in agreement. The waitress then escorts them to an empty booth, places two menus, and then hurries off to tend other customers. The man quickly opens up the menu and begins examining each of the items. "Goodness, what to choose? The local fare, or something more familiar? Augh, so many choices...!"

Jacqueline quietly peruses her menu, looking only at the appetizers. "You know as well as I do you'll buy anything you want, anyway. It's not like we have a lack of funds or anything." She makes a note of what she wants and gently puts the menu back on the table. "Besides, if we're going to do this we may as well go all out in all that we do. So do whatever you like, Kain."

Kain made his choices and then awaited the waitress. Upon her return, Jacqueline ordered a sushi roll set, while Kain ended up ordering five different dishes. Deciding to spend the wait doing something productive, Kain logged on and quickly began surfing the net. "Do you know where we're supposed to go?" Jackie asked. "You haven't mentioned it once since we got here."

Kain ruefully smiled and shook his head. "I'm sorry, but it's been a task and a half getting this ruddy thing to work here. Japanese make good technology but I'll be damned if us gaijin can ever get any of it to WORK." A few more keystrokes and he sighed happily. "Finally! Now, to see where we're meeting..."

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Fate/After Empty Re: Fate/After

Post  EpicMasterMind on Mon Oct 21, 2013 12:27 am

Fate/Day—One, The Church

Early morning light streamed through the stained glass in a rolling rainbow collage of greens and blues and reds and yellows that hugged around the cross and painted the pews with color.  Elaborate tapestries cascaded along the walls and from the balconies, each a rich celebration of religious zeal and everyone more decorative than the last.  Even the carpet was as lush beneath the feet as God’s own greenery and rivaled his finest fruits for its wine red color.  The pulpit loomed over it all, finely handcrafted from equal parts mahogany and things rarer still, rivaled only by the confessionals tucked neatly near the corner.  There were sweeping arches and pillars a plenty one either end; everything was bronze and gold and silver and anything that wasn’t was tucked away, embarrassed, beneath fine crimson cloths and under candelabra or charity plates.   It was beautiful, breathtaking in its way, but most of all, it was just—
“A bit gaudy,” James breathed as he hobbled along between the pews, “but that’s the Church for you.”
Though dressed with as much elegance as before, his palette had changed its whites for blacks and blues for forest greens; a button-down shirt under a fine suit-vest with slacks and smart oxford shoes.  His cane carried him to the end of the isle where he lingered a moment, paused as part of the profound silence which pervade the sanctuary; it was a quiet stillness, a soundless blanket, as near to the sublime as anyone could ever hope to be.  His breath bled away, his heart beat a thunderous percussion, and it seemed even the slightest twitch would tip the balance and shatter the illusion of serenity.
James cracked his cane against the side of the pew once, twice, thrice, and then finally a fourth before anyone stopped him.  “Okay, okay!  Sorry, just—I’m coming, so stop with the racket,” a woman’s voice echoed from some back hallway.  A few seconds later the speaker stumbled out with a stack of books tucked under her chin.
She was maybe a head shorter than James and probably a few years younger.  Her hair was dark blue and a little messy; it fell a little longer in the front than the back with parted bangs that framed a feminine heart-shaped face.  A pair of bright blue eyes shone from behind a pair of oval-framed glasses, which were riding down the bridge of her nose.  She was dressed in all black, a sort of Nun habit that clung a bit more closely to her curves than traditional religious modesty normally allowed, about as standard as the heavy duty work boots she wore. 
“My bad,” she apologized with the exact opposite of priestly eloquence, “I was just putting some stuff away and—!”
“Ciel!” James barked in surprise.  “You’ve got to be kidding me.”
The woman, Ciel, stared at the man over the rim of her glasses.  She blinked, once, and then cocked her head, slowly, quizzically, to one side.  Then, all at once, the books were everywhere but in her arms and her lips had curled into a broad grin as she strode over them. 
“Halloway,” she laughed, “James Halloway.”
“Halloway-Tohsaka,” James corrected her and with that comment the situation snapped into perspective.  His surprise bled into cheer as he met her smile with one of his own.
“Oh, that’s right,” Ciel nodded, “I heard about that!”  She strode boldly into his personal space and James had to beat a hasty retreat to avoid the finger she leveled toward his chest.  “Isn’t she a little young for you?”
James pushed her arm aside with his cane.  “No offense,” he said, “but you are literally the last person who should be playing the age card.”
That seemed to deflate her enthusiasm.  Her finger curled, her arm fell, her shoulders seemed to slip a little, and her eyes lost a little of their mischief.  “Yeah,” Ciel mouthed more than said, “fair enough.”  Then the light flew back into her eyes, “So, what’re you doing here, James?”
“Registration,” James said, "I think."
“So, that makes you the Association’s representative then, right?”
“Right,” James affirmed.  “And I’m guessing that you’re not here as part of the Burial Agency.  Which means,” he played at a sigh, “that they made you the ref, didn’t they?”
Ciel nodded with a self-satisfied smirk.  “Mmm-hmm.  Ever since, well, y’know—Narbarek’s been trying to get rid of me.  Sending me here, sending me there.  I swear, her orders might as well just read: ‘go die and stop bothering me’.”
“She’s a real doll,” James agreed.
Ciel motioned for James to follow her up to the pulpit as she spoke.  “I think the only reason I’m here is because she’s hoping that I’ll go the way of my predecessor.”
 “Kirei Koto-somethingornother.  Real dour sort, I hear, but I’m not totally sure what happened to the guy.”
James arched an eyebrow, “They didn’t tell you?”
“They don’t tell anyone,” Ciel shook her head.  “Everything about the Fuyuki City Incident is locked down by Narbarek and her favorite cronies make sure it stays that way.  I’d wager the only way to find out the truth is to hear firsthand from someone that was there.”  She paused, leaning on her elbows over the pulpit, and gave him a sly grin, “You wouldn’t happen to know anyone like that, would you?”
James shot back a wry smile of his own and shrugged, “Can’t say that I do.”
“Sure,” she chuckled, “sure.  Hold on a second.”  Ciel disappeared behind the pulpit for a few seconds.  When she popped back into view, she was holding the kind of plain notebook a high schooler would have.  The words Holy Grail War were scrawled across the cover in permanent marker and a pen was stashed in the binder rings.  She handed it to him, “Here you go.”
James eyed the notebook, “Seriously?”
Ciel clicked the pen out.  “The others should be arriving shortly,” she said, “if you want to stick around.”

Last edited by EpicMasterMind on Mon Oct 21, 2013 6:28 am; edited 1 time in total

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Post  Magoo111 on Mon Oct 21, 2013 5:35 am

The soft crash from inside the church stopped Priscilla's hand just short of pushing open the church door. She hesitated, pulling her left hand back. She waited for a few moments. Maybe she heard muffled noises and laughter, though she could not be sure. She settled for tapping her foot a few times, waiting for what seemed to be a decent time for any conversation or murder that could be occurring within. She traded the previous night's black and white for various beige tones, her orb tattoo and earrings all red to contrast. She reached her hand out again to push against the door, firmly but with enough restraint to not make too much noise. The door did not so much as creek.

"Oh rubbish, is this the wrong church?" she thought as she backed up a step, looking around the grounds again. It had to be the right church. As far as she knew, it was the only bloody church like it in the whole city! She pushed the door again, this time with both hands. Nothing. She braced her back, huffing once as she exerted herself, still not making any effort. Was this some kind of damn test? Did she have to magically whiff the door open or some nonsense like that?

"What kind of bollocks is th...oh bugger," Priscilla said, brief rage rapidly dissipating as she settled her hand on the actual door handle. And then pulled the door open effortlessly. She resolved to explain the red in her cheeks was far too much makeup if anyone asked before sighing softly and entering the building.

She seemed to be the third person there! Or, second, she guessed, as the nun-like lady would probably have always been there. She entered the church and gently let the door close behind her, holding it slightly to slow its return to neutral as to avoid a slamming noise. She did not want to disturb the others already in the church, after all, though the carpet did little to muffle to heel of her boots anyways. That, and the length of the walk to the pulpit, meant she had no chance of avoiding the attention of the others in the church.

So she waved twice with her left hand as she approached, attempting to look amiable as possible. Ciel waved back, which was enough in Miss Mort's mind to make up for the door incident.

"Good morning, lady and gent," Priscilla said once she was within comfortable talking distance. She did not recognize...either of them. A shocker, truly. The man, a handsome fellow to be sure, handed her a notebook with a mix of a smirk and bewilderment. Puzzled, Prisiclla looked at the cover, stifling a chuckle with tightly closed lips. It was an adorable little school binder!

"Oh, that's...that's beautiful. That's righteous. I like you!" Priscilla said to Ciel, flipping past the already filled page to put down her own information. "Right on off to Poundland to buy a murder book! I love it," Priscilla said as she finished up, shutting the binder and handing it back to Ciel. Ciel grabbed it back with a sweet smile. Sweet, except for that slight shadow behind her eyes that suggested murdered.

"I did not buy this at a dollar store. Just so you are aware," Ciel said, smile unflinching as she held the binder until the next person arrived. Priscilla nodded a few times, rubbing her hands together to fight the sudden extreme chill up her spine. For some reason, the hand rubbing was not working.

"Oh come on, there is no shame in dollar stores! I got these earrings at a thrift shop. There is virtue in a woman who makes anything work," Priscilla said, crossing her arms lightly, returning Ciel's 'smile' with a mild lowering of her eyelids. Though a chill crept up her spine and gripped her heart from inside, she held her ground. A moment later, Ciel's smile was genuine as she nodded her head once.

"I appreciate a woman with good boot taste," Ciel said, as an awkward gesture of friendship.

"Righteous! Too many women walking around in stilettos these days! What's a gal ta'do if some yank rights on up to wank on you if you don't have a good pair of boots? Not like a heel wearing huss can kick a man in the twig as easy as we can, eh?" Priscilla said, glad that the conflict over thriftiness vs cheapness had been settled with both of them on the high ground. She shook hands with Ciel once, a wide smile on her face.

"I'm Ciel, this war's ref, more or less. I'm glad to meet you."

"I'm Priscilla Mort. It's a pleasure, Ciel!" she said, having no idea who the woman was. "That is a pretty name, though!" she thought before she turned her attention to the handsome man, holding her left hand out to him as well.

"It is a true pleasure, Mr....?"

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Post  EpicMasterMind on Tue Oct 22, 2013 12:28 am

“It is a true pleasure, Mr…?”
“Halloway,” James answered.  The young woman, one Priscilla Mort, held a hand outstretched to him.  He glanced at it a moment and then, with a resigned smile, his cane passed from one hand to the other.  His weight shifted with it, a little awkwardly onto his good leg.  Then he took her hand in his and shook it politely, “James Halloway.”
“Halloway-Tohsaka,” Ciel chimed in with a devilish grin, doing her best to mime his earlier tone.
“That too,” James kept smiling, “but I guess you can just call me the competition.”  He sized her up as he spoke.  Priscilla was tall, leggy, with porcelain skin and messy chocolate hair.  Beautiful, perhaps, but also delicate—probably not the type who knew her way around a fight, sure, but 'probably' always bothered him.

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