Fate/ Scheme Naive- [Nekomancer & Noel] IC
Nestled away on a big private lot on the outskirts of Woodglen stood a two story cottage, mostly surrounded by tall evergreen trees. A thin gravel driveway snakes through the four acres of wooded land towards paved streets and the borough proper. It was the sort of place that comes to mind when you think of fancy bed and breakfast, or a wealthy retiree's summer home. The house itself couldn't even be seen from the road, you'd need to walk onto the property for a couple minutes before it came into view. It gave the distinct feeling of being secluded, despite how close it was to the rest of city's residential area. On the other hand, there are lots of places like it in an ecotourism spot like Stone Lake.
On the back patio of that quaint house stood a small woman, perhaps just reaching five feet in height. She wore a red silk dress which rustled softly about her body in the spring breeze, and had her long brown hair done up in a loose ball held with a simple mahogany hair stick. Before her was a man in a dark overcoat, reading from a handsomely bound book as he drew intricate symbols on a sprawling vellum that had been laid flat on the wooden deck. As he finished a sigil within the large circle he smirked and gave a self-satisfied 'Hmm', closing the book and putting his palms on his knees to help himself up.
"Alright, favor repaid. I've done the hard part, all that's left is for you to complete the incantation and make an offering of blood. If that's all, I'll be off. I want to get the hell out of here before this whole thing starts." The man spoke harshly, the short goatee on his chin wobbling as he addressed the Asian woman. Fan had known him too long to be put off by his grumpy show of defiance, and just smiled warmly and offered a gentle wave. "Take care, I wouldn't want you getting caught up in something. I really appreciate your help." The middle aged magus turned on his heel and began walking with dramatically heavy steps towards the front of the house, clearly miffed. "It's not 'help'. I owed you, and now I don't. Understand?"
That drew a raised eyebrow from Fan, whose expression faltered momentarily before being replaced by a teasing grin. "Hmm... you're thinking too hard." She said with a bit of mischief creeping across her face. "Thanks again, Teagan. Until next time." She smiled wider as her words had the intended effect, eliciting an irritated shutter from the purple-clad magus. With a huff he doubled his pace away from the wooden cottage and brusquely barked over his shoulder "God forbid. I don't care if I get into trouble again, I'm not asking for your help. Good-bye." He broke the last farewell into two staccato points, underlining the finality in his words as he all but ran the the rest of the way off of Fan's property.
After Teagan had departed and the teapot she'd made for them had cooled, Fan moved to where her old acquaintance had prepared the summoning. Honestly it was a big help, she mused as she inspected the tripartite crimson mark emblazoned on the back of her hand. Without his help she wouldn't even have known what the command seals were, much less things like the grail war or how to preform the ritual to call a servant. It was all new and unusual to her, but on the other hand magecraft always seemed strange and new to her. Nearly a century of contact with magi hadn't changed that fact. She counted herself lucky to have such a good friend among the mages at the clocktower, and even more so that he was willing to help to this degree. It still seemed peculiar to her that he was so caught up with whom owes who, and why. It seemed plain as day to her that you help your friends and they help in return, but whenever she found Teagen in trouble he seemed almost depressed to see her; like she was just compounding his problems by putting him in her debt. She hurt his pride, she supposed.
At any rate it was all water under the bridge. She just did what felt right to her, and now karma had seen fit to repay her. Fan took a rolled piece of parchment that Teagan had left for her, marked in chicken-scratch with the words of the summoning. Unwinding the twine that kept the scroll tightly bundled, Fan opened the parcel with a little shake and began the reading.
"Das Material ist aus Silber und Eisen. Der Grundstein ist aus Stein und dem Großherzog des Vertrag. Der Ahn ist mein großer Meister Schweinorg.
Schutz gegen einen heftigen Wind. Schließ alle Tore, geh aus der Krone, zirkulier die Gabelung nach dem König.
Füll, füll, füll, füll, füll.
Es wird fünfmal wiederholt.
Nur ist es die volle Zeit gebrochen.
Du überläßt alles mir, mein Schicksal überläßt alles deinem Schwert.
Das basiert auf dem Gral, antwort wenn du diesem Willen und diesem Vernunftgrund folgst.
Liegt das Gelübde hier. Ich bin die Güte der ganzen Welt. Ich bin das Böse der ganzen Welt.
Du bist der Himmel mit dreien Wortseelen. Komm, aus dem Kreis der Unterdrückung, der Schutzgeist der Balkenwaag!"
Last edited by Nekomancer; 01-26-2013 at 01:28 PM.
As the incantation began to be recited by the woman the intricate runes drawn onto the floor responded in turn. A vibrant red glow slowly began to make its way around the magic circle with each new line recited. From the center the light grew brighter, more intricate scrawlings revealed themselves as the light once again continued outwards. With the ritual in progress the air within the room was permeated with energy, like a subtle feeling of static flitting through the air. The summoning circle grew brighter still, and a duplicate raised from the base , the twin lights let out by the two resembling a shining glass pillar. The energy within the room was quickly drawn in between the two circles, and then, it began to materialize. The servant began to form, from toe to head the body materialized from nothing. Tall dark leather boots stretching above the knees, a simple black pant below a white tunic, a black belt slung around the waist and finally a matching cloaked draped over the tall woman’s shoulders.
The energy began to dissipate. The light of the summoning circle began to fade leaving only a faint mist of residual energy wafting through the room. The servants deep crimson hair fell against her back, sharp green eyes opened slowly and gazed about the room taking in the new distinctly foreign surroundings. The last thing her eyes landed upon was what was surely the most important subject in the room. A small woman standing at least a foot below her in height and dressed in rather elegant attire. The newly summoned Lancer stared down at the woman for a long moment, clearly analyzing her without a single effort to hide the fact.
She began to step forward slowly, footfalls landing heavily upon the floor with each step. She moved until standing just before the smaller woman. “Tell me, are you the one who's summoned me?” The woman stated with eyes locked onto the smaller womans, her voice a deep stern tone which demanded immediate answer. A fairly obvious question being the only other person in the room, but a suitable bridge into introductions and thus a necessary formality. The Lancer's arms raised to her chest and crossed, calmly yet a bit impatiently awaiting the response from her soon to be partner.
As the ritual hit its stride, lights issuing forth from the circle and phantasmal winds jostling the boughs of the evergreens around the yard, Fan watched quietly until it had reached its completion. All crimson lights abated, winds stilled, and any other signs of the summoning vanished, except of course for the actual object of the magecraft. There within the confines of the vellum sheet stood one who cut an imposing figure. Taller than Fan, and of dark countenance; a shock of red hair and finely hewn features upon her face. In summary, quite the striking presence. And of course, the fated words issued forth from the woman's mouth. The question brought a musing look to Fan's face before she answered ponderously.
"Hmm... I am, I suppose." She tilted her head slightly as she answered, raising her hand to show the red mark inscribed there. Her lips quirking up at the corners when she thought about the question. Teagan had done most of the work, Fan just did what she was told. It was like signing a painting someone else had finished, but since the magus had no intention of participating in the war Fan reasoned that the pedantics were neither here nor there. The servant's meticulous inspection didn't seem to bother Fan in the slightest, as she returned the sentiment by intently looking over the woman before her. Having answered the question asked of her, Fan returned one of her own. "Would you care to drink with me?"
The servants brow rose slightly at the smaller womans answer which did not make it sound like she was sure if that was the correct answer herself. But the red markings appearing upon her hand showed that she was in fact the one that had summoned her. The crimson haired woman nodded lightly, this tiny person certainly did not look to be formidable but brawn was not all there is to being a warrior. Brains, cunning, agility, tactfulness, they were all qualities that could make a good warrior and furthermore were not things which one could tell by a simple glance making them all the more valued. The lancer stood silent for a moment longer before letting out a light breath and letting her posture relax a bit.
The question the small summoner gave in response to her own made the woman laugh out lightly, a faint smile spreading across her lips. ”Well I suppose I'm in no place to refuse. I hope you can hold you drink young lady.” The servant responded, giving the summoner a hearty pat on the shoulder. Her eyes once again drew around the room to take in the surroundings now that the light from the summoning had fully dissipated. The world was truly different then the one she was used to, if nothing else seeing it would be an intriguing prospect, but the one that summoned her would be a factor that would effect just how her brief stay in the world would pan out, leaving her all the more interested in this person.
Hearing her servant's reply, Fan only smiled a bit wider. Turning in place, she moved towards the door that lead into the cabin's dining room and kitchen. In the room beyond was small round table with four chairs, a credenza close to one wall, a waist-high partition that divided the eating area from the actual kitchen. The kitchen had all of the modern essentials: a gas stove and oven, refrigerator, microwave, kettles and so on. From the doorway where they entered, Fan walked over to the sideboard where a bottle of whiskey and a pair of tumblers sat. Unscrewing the top, she filled both glasses before turning to Lancer and offered one to her. "My name is Fan Wong. I'm sure that there's much to discuss between us, but for now I think we should take our time to save ourselves from a false start." Taking her own glass with her as she seated herself at the table, she angled her seat so that she could see Lancer and swept her hand towards an unoccupied seat opposite to her. I hope that we can enjoy one another's company throughout the war." Raising her glass slightly to the taller woman in a toast, Fan tipped it back and took a large sip from it.
The servant continued close behind her new found partner and most when she turned and headed out into the dining room. Once more Lancer took a moment for her eyes to draw over the room, yet another one that was entirely foreign when compared to her experiences. But such things would be normal within this world so her interest in the differences between the modern world and her own quickly dwindled. She watched the smaller woman idly before she turned and presented one of the glasses to her, taking it and nodding lightly to the introduction. ”Well spoken, then to a new partnership and a splendid victory” The woman responded while sitting across from Fan and raising her glass to return the toast, a faint clink of glass sounding through the room. The lancer then took the class and gulped the alcohol back, looking to the swiftly emptied with a faint but satisfied grin. Setting the glass back down and crossing her arms once more she looked back to the smaller woman.
”Now then, I believe it is important to know one you will fight beside well. What skills will you be bringing to the table little lady?” She continued on, her voice growing a bit more stern as she switched to a more serious matter but still remaining casual. It would be important knowing what abilities her partner would employ so their course of action could be properly decided. Her character on the other hand would be something which had to be observed over time but there was little to be done about that, and the first impression had struck her well.
Another expected question from the lips of her servant. Of course it would be wise of them to understand each others' capacities, and to know how they'd each participate in the war. Fan had known that the question would be forthcoming since before the summoning, but she'd yet to find an answer she found satisfactory. In her long years of life being Xian had become natural to her, so it felt odd to try and explain. It was like a regular person explaining that people can think, and then trying to explain what thought is. In and of itself the self examination was not strange to her, but having to eloquently explain it to another person was new to Fan. Her expression clouded slightly as she searched for words.
After a momentary pause, she tried to put it as best she could. "When we are within our mothers' wombs, we move and breath perfectly. As we grow old, everyone forgets how to do this. I remembered how to breath and walk correctly." As she finished her thought, she continued on in hopes of clarifying. "Breathing is the fundamental to life. From birth until death it is how we exchange good and bad. It propagates life force, it can undo wounds, connect oneself to the world around them."
Her thin eyebrows knit together as she continued speaking, still searching for the right way to answer. Although she felt that she had explained well, in practical terms she had said very little. It was likely the practical terms that Lancer had been most interested in, so explaining the philosophy might not be entirely appropriate. Replacing the thinking look on her face with her usual smile, she settled to explain it in as plain terms as she could. "No living man can match my Kung Fu, the wind obeys my will, I move through the air like a swallow, and I can mend injuries." Having explained everything she that she felt needed to be, she grew quiet. She leaned in towards Lancer, waiting for her servant to reciprocate the talk. Her eyes seemed expectant, like those of a child awaiting a present.
"If you believe in it, it is real, if you do not, it is fiction." - Chapter 009
As her master began to speak Lancer sat quietly, and a bit curiously listening to the womans speech. They way she began to explain had taken her by surprise and sparked a bit of interest, there were not many who would begin to explain their combat abilities with philosophic musings and theories. A brow rose slightly and her head tilted a bit, crimson bangs falling over her face. Truthfully speaking the philosophic ramblings were entirely unnecessary to explain what this woman could do when it got right down to it, but it did make the servant further ponder what sort of individual Fan may be. Religious, simply curious of just how everything in the world works, or something else entirely? Lancer pushed the line of thought to the back of her mind for the moment to address the more immediate situation.
”So I see, an unconventional adaptation of the arcane. Most prefer indirect means too highly to consider martial arts.” The servant began while looking over Fan. She had expected this girl would too gravitate more towards ranged combat with her small stature, but height was little issue to a skilled fighter and at times could even be an advantage. When the master leaned forward and stared at her with expecting eyes Lancer fell silent for a few moments, looking across the table at the eager looking woman. It was obviously her turn to go into just what her own capabilities were. She flashed a faint smile and a light laugh before her expression grew stern and she was ready to begin.
”I myself am a master with the spear and have accumulated a great deal of knowledge on the arcane in my many years. I was a witch as well as a warrior in life so it is a simple matter to accelerate the regeneration of energy within my form even without being supplied energy from a master. Unfortunately most witchcraft seems to be sealed by the contract.” Lancer began once more, speaking firmly and directly. While her master seemed fond of flowery words to describe her abilities the servant was quite the opposite, merely wishing to explain her current capabilities as simply as possible. ”Furthermore, I can augment my blade with the use of prana, while charged it can even tear through powerful barriers or disrupt enemy spells, if not simply discharged to attack. Lastly I can draw a single being into my own realm, separating servant and master. However this separates ourselves as well.” When the short lecture on her own abilities was finished Lancer took a breath before leaning forward a bit herself, staring directly into her masters eyes, her own expression holding a look of quiet confidence.
”For better or worse, in life I had slain countless mortals, spirits, even gods fell by my blade. Though the battles may be long and arduous, have no doubt that if the cards are played wisely we will emerge victorious.” When the final statement was made Lancer eased back into her seat, recrossing her arms to await Fan's response.
Fan waited quietly through the explanation, not interrupting even when she had questions or when things were unclear to her. She wouldn't really have considered her own abilities arcane, but maybe in the eyes of others they were. Certainly she wasn't a normal person, and she was at least a match for magi, so there seemed little point in worrying needlessly over her servant's choice of words. For the most part she gleaned what she could from Lancer's explanations, bridging gaps in her understanding with simple guesswork when she needed to. In summary, Lancer was a physical powerhouse that could remain largely self-sufficient and had a number of interesting techniques. Fan was somewhat surprised though to hear that Lancer had at one point been a talented spellcaster. From the few magi she'd met in the past two centuries, they had been almost uniformly frail, bookish people. That image clashed against the firmly built woman before her, but Fan hardly tended to rigid preconceptions. On the contrary, the new perspective on her servant gave root to a budding curiosity. It was quashed only momentarily by Lancer's sterner statement about victory in the war, and choosing their course of action wisely.
Fan's face seemed almost reassuring as she spoke. Not condescending, but as though she was certain everything were going to be alright. "It makes me glad to see such confidence. I don't believe that the grail would have chosen us to participate if we had no chance to succeed." A lively sparkle sneaked into the corner of her eye, and her voice took on a curious tone as she asked. "So you were a witch? I can't say I know much about magic, but that comes as a surprise. I wouldn't have guessed."
Quietly finishing the whiskey that still swirled in her glass, Fans set down the empty tumbler on the tabletop. Her words were noncommittal enough that they left the conversation open to move on, she silently hoped that Lancer would choose to speak more on the matter. Regardless of where their talk took them, Fan supposed she'd be fine with it. Some part of her considered the coming war, making preparations and so on. At the same time it'd likely be easier to wait and see. Eventually the other servant's would make themselves known, and then she and Lancer could participate at their leisure. In contrast, she had no real way to actively search out the other pairs. Unlike a proper magi she had no familiars, no bounded fields, or anything else that could be used to that effect. There would be no easy route, if they wanted to find the other participants they would need to use their brains.
Deciding that it would perhaps be better to be up and about, Fan stood from her seated position and spoke up. "Alright, would you walk with me around the city? It would give you a chance to learn the lay of the land and such."
"If you believe in it, it is real, if you do not, it is fiction." - Chapter 009
Lancer's brow rose when Fan began to speak once more. She knew little of magic yet claimed to be capable of feats beyond that of the average person? Those to points did not add up cleanly at first thought, but in the end there were anomalous existences within the world. Even in her own time she had came upon a few, in this time far after her own it could only be guessed what kind of abilities and even what kind of magecraft had been developed over the years. The question rose in her mind how this woman even performed a summoning with little knowledge of the arcane but that too mattered little. Even if it had been done by trickery the servant would have to work with the cards that were dealt or lose the only chance at victory.
”Yes I was. I had learned to weave spells along side mastering the spear. Many warriors had shortsightedly disregarded the usefulness of witchcraft and sorcery, in inversely spell weavers tended to neglect training their bodies. I've found such things foolish, to limit ones self to a singular path.” The crimson haired woman began speaking calmly, with a bit of a wistful tone showing in her voice as she recalled events of her early life. ”My efforts in learning both were not for nothing either, I could not have accomplished as much as I had in life with merely a single set of skills.” Lancer finished up speaking shortly before Fan stood and proposed the duos next course of action.
Lancer gave a nod and stood herself. ”A wise idea, though I would advise to stay on guard. One may never know when an enemy is watching.” She stated firmly, it was unlikely an enemy would strike so soon but the fact it was unlikely could be taken as just the reason for an enemy to strike. An inattentive opponent was after all the easiest to strike down. Without another word the servant stepped with heavy boot-falls to the homes exit, stepping outside to the sight of tall trees. A small smile spread over Lancer's lips, the scene faintly reminiscent of tree lined fields of her own time.