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Koutaku
Koutaku
Citizen
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Clan Specialty : N/A
Village : Kirigakure
Ryo : 30650

A Journey Beyond [P] - Page 3 Empty Re: A Journey Beyond [P]

Sat Oct 30, 2021 2:47 am
Prickling, smothering, strangling darkness enshrouded him, engulfed him, invaded his person, pervaded his senses. Violated and utterly helpless in his state of frozen terror, the wraith wrapped him in its clutches and wouldn’t let go. It whispered through his mind and tore at his sanity. Bereft of purpose, focus, and autonomy, Koutaku tried to scream, but no sound came. Struggling as he felt something press painfully into his ear canal, slithering through the inside of his head where nothing ought to go, Koutaku suddenly knew with certainty that he would die here and now.

A rabid anger surged up through him, a terrible instinct to survive, even at the cost of wholeness. He raged, his chakra burst from him in coruscating rays of burning light. The old woman shrieked, then giggled, and cackled. Her grip grew tighter, and something in his mind simply snapped.

The black took him.

He drifted in that tractless ocean of unconsciousness for a long time, curled up within himself, hiding from the world. It was cold outside that place somehow, but here he felt safe...secure. Nothing could harm him here, not so long as he stayed unaware, remained blissfully asleep. Yet, something beat against the edges of his unconscious mind, raking its influence against his only remaining haven. Then, a fierce ray of light pierced the black and struck him. He coiled in on himself and swam through the black, fleeing its light, knowing it could bring only pain and terror. Like a dog who had never known love, only abuse and misery, Koutaku fled the light as if it had only ever burned him.

Yet, he could not outswim it, could not flee from himself. So it was that with a flash, Koutaku’s eyes snapped open and he surged to his feet, reaching for weapons. There were none. His eyes--already wild--grew wider with terror and realization as the gravity of his situation dawned on him. He turned, whipping his head around and felt the faintest shred of relief as he found Takashi nearby, out of his reach, but alive and largely unmarred.

Still, the experience had shaken him to his core, it had played on every fear he knew. Fear of helplessness, of powerlessness, of despair. It had touched an insecurity deeper than any other, those that had driven him ever forward to seek control, to remain prepared and ever vigilant so he could never be surprised. Then, every gate, every defense he’d erected around those weaknesses had been torn down all at once until nothing remained.

Yet, some part of him remained, seeking control, seeking order, desiring calm. He breathed, and that breath became his lifeline. He slowly relaxed back onto the ground, curling into the fetal position, avoiding Takashi’s gaze as he focused every iota of his being on the in and out of air as it passed through his lungs. With each exhale, the tension eased an inch, with each inhale the wildness slowly left his eyes until eventually he seemed slightly more himself. Still shaking uncontrollably, Koutaku spoke, his voice just as filled with tremors.

“A-a...are you...o-k-kay?” His teeth chattered together as he spoke, but he wasn’t cold. He still couldn’t meet her eyes, couldn’t face the rejection or the disappointment she might feel...or the pity. Even compassion might sting. He was in no shape to be around people, but at least it was his closest friend who sat some few meters askance.

Spoiler:


Last edited by Koutaku on Sun Oct 31, 2021 5:05 am; edited 1 time in total
Takashi
Takashi
Citizen
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Clan Specialty : Bukijutsu
Village : Kirigakure
Ryo : 56000

A Journey Beyond [P] - Page 3 Empty Re: A Journey Beyond [P]

Sat Oct 30, 2021 3:36 am
“I-I’m… okay. Okay. Yeah.” Takashi’s voice replied, suddenly small and meek in the face of the horrors that seemed just now to be catching up to her flow of consciousness. She staggered forwards a little bit, looking down at his prone form with the concern of a sister or a close cousin--but somewhere beneath that gaze a hint of contempt blossomed beneath her. It gripped her viscerally once she realised it was there and the feeling shocked her immensely, causing her to stumble backwards into the pipe on the wall with a shuddering clang. Her eyes went wide and her pulse trembled, her teeth ground into each other relentlessly like millstones at work. She crumpled to the ground in a dejected heap, viscerally disgusted with herself and unable to cope with the enormity of the conflict in her chest.

Then that voice came again. Hunger cannot be denied. Neither theirs nor yours. Let his essence nourish yours; let his lifeblood spill in service of you. It is what you need. It is what you deserve. It trickled into Takashi’s mind like a softly enveloping haze, soothing the fraying edges of her sanity and knitting the fabric of her reality back together with its warm simplicity. Survival at any cost, that most primal of instincts, brought on and coaxed into fullness by that strange voice whispering in her mind once again. It didn’t seem to be a part of the nightmare that she was experiencing, but truth be told she had no way to tell if it was or wasn’t. All she knew was that without it propping her up the world was coming apart and the agony of witnessing it was too much to bear again--if this voice offered sanctuary from that awful place, she’d offer it everything she had.

In the distance the circle of moonlight began to inch closer and closer, shadows writhing within its coruscant glow in the shape of that terrible symbol once more. The apparition of the elderly woman from the hotel made itself known once more, slithering into being like a puff of smoke from outside of this horrible space.

“A heart unbars the way, offered in righteous praise.”

The sound filled the air for a second, Takashi not fully recognising what it meant--as she looked further into the room and saw the door, she recognised the scene from Kirigakure earlier repeating itself again. There was a circle of candles on the floor, and within a circle inscribed with a thick, darkly glistening liquid… that same triangle as before… but no heart this time. No offering. Takashi recognised immediately what she had to do, and her hand went for the kunai in her yukata without thinking about it before she caught what she was doing and batted her hand away, crumpling into a choking sob as she did so.

“I think one of us has to die here, Koutaku… I-I’m… I…” she started, but she found herself unable to continue as wracking sobs left her chest in ugly gulps and heaves… and yet some part of her remained keenly aware, coiled within and waiting to ensnare whatever wandered into the web of her most insidious desires.


Spoiler:
Koutaku
Koutaku
Citizen
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Village : Kirigakure
Ryo : 30650

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Sat Oct 30, 2021 4:14 am
Deep breaths, once calming, now barely buoyed him to sanity, to order, to reason. He only nodded in reply to Takashi, unable to watch her longer than the time it took her to utter the words. He saw the flickers of emotion across her face, the subtle ones, some she attempted to hide, others that she couldn’t. He felt them too, but not how she did, or why she did. At least, he didn’t think so. Think hah he could barely form a cogent idea in his head, let alone a proper thought, a completed concept, a plan, or a stratagem of any kind. He was pitiful, useless, impotent, and utterly unprepared. Without his weapons he felt naked, but...was he truly weaponless, could a shinobi ever by fully disarmed?

Koutaku raised his hands up before him, but before he could come to a true conclusion, the dreadful cadence of a now familiar voice rang out, shattering his concentration, forcing him to retreat. Scuffling into a corner--and immediately feeling incredible shame alongside his terror--Koutaku cowered from the ghastly crone. Her words washed over him, but found no purchase, he derived from them no more meaning than any other sound. There were as sand through his fingers, lost and impossible to hold.

He turned his gaze, saw the strange arrangement of candles, of symbols etched into the ground. Perhaps fuinjutsu? It didn’t matter. Nothing mattered. What could they even do in this place? This terrible hell to which they’d been dragged by some inhuman spirit wearing the guise of a woman, if aged and wrinkled. He shuddered again, but slowly the clutches of terror eased as he continued his breathing. Some small part of him remained resolute, defiant in the face of tragedy, of misery, and shame. It would not give in, would not relent, would not bow. Couldn’t.

But it was small and it was fighting an uphill battle where the hill was a mountain, and its foes numerous. Koutaku clenched his teeth against the terror, stilling the shaking in his jaw. He gripped his hands into fists, one coiling its grip around the chain at his ankle. He raised his eyes and saw Takashi again. His closest friend, his confidant, a sister of sorts. There had to be a way out of this and she soon presented it, but those words...they roused cursed knowledge that had seemed to pass him by. They revealed to him the words of the hag, and their dreaded purpose.

To break him.

Tears slipping down his cheeks without the slightest sob or whine, Koutaku spoke. His voice was clear and true, if quiet and low with somberness and shame. “I can’t, Takashi,” he said, and then he met her gaze. There were many things he would do to survive, to prosper, to innovate, and indeed to make his mark on the world. Yet, to ask him to betray the one person who had been there with him through everything? Who had been patient with him--moreso even than his own family--who had grown with him, learned alongside him. Buoyed him and taught him how to face the world just as he had taught her how to conquer it. To betray her? To betray anyone that close to him?

It was not within his power. In that moment he discovered a fear greater than those he’d known before. The fear of loss. One borne of selfishness. He could fail the world perhaps, fail the expectations of others, but to fail himself...truly and completely? That he couldn’t stomach. Crawling as closer as he could manage, Koutaku knelt upon the floor and used his hands to pry open his own shirt, exposing the center of his chest. With all the calm he could manage, all the bravery he could muster, Koutaku met Takashi’s eyes again.

With a thread of steel seeping into his voice for one final time, he spoke.

“I can fail my family, strangers, my clan, my peers...” he trailed off, swallowing as he channeled chakra into his fingertips, sharpening the energy to gouging scalpel-like points before poising his hand over his heart.

“...but I will not fail myself and I will not force that burden upon you either.”

In his gaze was something stronger than the boy she’d known for so many years, someone wiser, and more mature. It was perhaps a version of Koutaku that had not been meant to exist for some years yet. Still, now in that moment of extremes, he had emerged despite the odds, tempered by the incredible stress of their situation. Alas, he existed only for a moment before Koutaku plunged his fingers downwards and into his own chest, then twisted. Suppressing the pain with a single handseal, Koutaku anesthetized himself. Then, with a final pull, he tore out his own heart and let it fall from his hand, rolling across the floor and to his friend.

As he faded, falling to his side, his vision already fuzzy and vague, Koutaku whispered one last phrase.

“I do this, not for you, but for the me I should have been.”

Then, with a coughing, sputtering, gasp, he began to quickly lose consciousness as blood seeped out the gaping hole in his chest where once his heart had been.

While perhaps not how he might have liked to, he’d left his mark upon the world. One would only have to look upon Takashi to know that single undeniable fact.

Further, in those final moments he’d transcended his former goal and done something noble and good.

Perhaps that was enough.

Spoiler:


Last edited by Koutaku on Sun Oct 31, 2021 5:09 am; edited 1 time in total
Takashi
Takashi
Citizen
Stat Page : Takashi's Stats
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Clan Specialty : Bukijutsu
Village : Kirigakure
Ryo : 56000

A Journey Beyond [P] - Page 3 Empty Re: A Journey Beyond [P]

Sat Oct 30, 2021 4:39 am
Koutaku’s little moment of heroism played out before Takashi’s eyes, her own welling with tears as the enormity of what he was about to do hit her. She moved as if to protest what he was going to do, but the strange sense of serenity that had overtaken Koutaku cowed her rebellious instincts, and the soothing voice inside her mind whispered comforting promises of future dividends if only she allowed this to play out. It was his choice, after all, wasn’t it? He’d chosen to go down this most noble route of sacrifice because he truly believed that it was the best option for him, because he’d found some source of inner strength so that he could stand just a little taller before the inevitable end? The voice tittered menacingly in her ear at the triteness of the thought--a valiant hero’s noble sacrifice for his friend… for himself? An utter waste of ambition and talent, it purred, and Takashi shuddered in revulsion at how intensely sweet the sensation felt.

“... I’ll remember you. I’ll make them remember too…” Takashi managed to get out, but despite herself a smirk crept its way across her mouth as she watched his heart fall from his chest and onto the ground. She watched his death throes intensely, shock and a macabre enjoyment interspersed across her features. She touched a line down her Yukata and severed the threads of silk from the rest of the fabric, twisting and reshaping it in her hands into a makeshift kunai. With it she performed several one-handed seals and cleaved through the chains that had held her back in a single swipe of force upwards, stumbling from the panic and desire to get to Koutaku before it was too late. She arrived by his side just in time for his last breath, squeezing his hand in hers as the other went to pick up his discarded organ.

She placed it in the circle reverentially, kneeling before the door and bowing her head as if in silent prayer. She did not know to whom she was supposed to dedicate these prayers, so she simply thanked whatever it was that had given her the strength to cope with this nightmarish situation and walk out alive. When she opened her eyes the door was open, and through it was her bedroom. She tore through the door in record speed, collapsing into the soft fibres of her bed immediately as slumber overtook her and fully overwhelmed her senses.

Spoiler:
Koutaku
Koutaku
Citizen
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Clan Specialty : N/A
Village : Kirigakure
Ryo : 30650

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Sat Oct 30, 2021 5:02 am
Slowly, a languid haze lifted. A delirious mist twisted away into the ether with a cackling howl. Wind roared and a high-pitched keening cut through all else. Darkness was pierced by sound as once light had done. Eyes opened, sticky with the residue of death--no, sleep. This figure, they were slow to rouse, but beyond the confines of their vicinity, they heard the clatter of a family in motion, of life. A deep gasping breath filled their lungs in the next instant and the figure sat up in their bed. Blue eyes shot around the room’s wooden walls, noting the various schemata, the weapons, and the garb of a shinobi, a stranger. No...not a stranger, it was their own.

It was... his.

Reaching down with seeking fingers, he pressed his fingertips gently against his abdomen, over where his heart had be--...no, no...he was intact. His skin lay bare and unblemished, not a scar in sight. His mouth gaped for a moment, one hand gripping at his blankets. It took another host of minutes before came to grips with the reality. He’d been dreaming. It had merely been a nightmare.

Yet...it’d been so real...and...why couldn’t he smell the sea?

Bolting up from his bed, Koutaku rushed to the window and threw it open, looking out into the village. It was different, yet familiar. He’d seen this place before...in his sleep. Had he been sleeping? Perhaps he’d been miraculously healed. Yet, if that had been the case, why had no one been watching over him, why was he in his bed and not laid up in the village’s medical center surrounded by the learned.

Lips slightly parted, his expression rife with confusion, Koutaku turned his gaze to his armaments and felt things click into place. It didn’t matter, he’d find out what had truly happened, but first...first he needed to find Takashi. Performing several handseals, Koutaku summoned all his gear onto his person, and then took a minute or three to adjust things and ensure that all was well with each and every piece of his gear. When he was finally satisfied, he climbed out the window and lept into a body flicker. Rather than head for the mission center, where he knew they’d planned to meet, and instead headed straight for the Yuganori estate.

Bounding across the rooftops, Koutaku spared no time for onlookers or the like. He avoided all contact he could manage as he blurred through the village--realizing only halfway there that if this weren’t Kirigakure that it made no sense for Takashi’s home to be where he was headed. Yet, as he arrived, it indeed was there. Glancing about and using his senses to detect any guards on patrol--Koutaku slipped in unnoticed, his movements silent and measured as a shinobi’s ought to be. In swift order, he had found his way to the living quarters, and that was where things grew slightly more difficult. Picking the lock, Koutaku entered the building and then activated two techniques. The Sticky Paper Adhesive Technique, and the Surface Walking Technique. Then, in swift order he leaped onto the ceiling and--much like a gecko--swiftly made his way through the halls. When the cost was clear and he was soundly above Takashi’s door, he dropped from the ceiling in an effortless twist and landed on his feet.

Once there, he knocked quietly and leaned in--knowing that the door opened inwards, thus not risking that he’d be struck--and whispered.

“It’s me Takashi, let me in.”

Spoiler:


Last edited by Koutaku on Sun Oct 31, 2021 5:10 am; edited 1 time in total
Takashi
Takashi
Citizen
Stat Page : Takashi's Stats
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Clan Specialty : Bukijutsu
Village : Kirigakure
Ryo : 56000

A Journey Beyond [P] - Page 3 Empty Re: A Journey Beyond [P]

Sat Oct 30, 2021 3:40 pm
Dark, tormented dreams stalked the edges of Takashi’s sleep after she was freed from the grip of that all-too-real nightmare, hidden safely at the very edges of her perception that her unconsciousness blurred into comfortable darkness. Even ensconced within the caliginous reaches of her soul as she was, vague intimations of darkly addicting bloodlust and a rising will to dominate seethed within her, eager to be freed and indulged in equal measure. As she approached wakefulness those wretched emotions quietened down to a hateful simmer, only barely noticeable, and it was not the bright of the morning dawn that fully drew her out of the dimension of dreams but Koutaku’s whispered voice.

Her eyes shot open and she bolted upright in her bed, suddenly wild with shock and anticipation--for a few pregnant seconds she did not deign to answer his call, her lungs greedily sucking in gulpfuls of air that overtook her ability to speak. Then, as she finally regained her wits, she performed the Dog handseal necessary to unstick the various silk folds of her door that kept it securely locked, causing the curtains to fall back and in so as to allow her friend passage. As soon as she did so she got up, still dressed in her nightclothes, and wrapped her arms around Koutaku’s neck in an unusually tight embrace.

“Oh, you’re okay! Oh, thank heavens--did that really happen, I mean, there was the mission centre and the house and the wolf and then the… the… d-did that really happen? I m-mean it didn’t because we’re here but did you also--” the words flew from Takashi’s mouth like an unstoppable flood, and she was unable to contain her relief in the slightest. She took a few seconds to compose herself before letting him go and pushing herself back enough that they could have some space without it being terribly awkward, looking down at him with a broad smile on her face and that same warmth he’d known from her before the nightmare they’d shared.

Spoiler:
Koutaku
Koutaku
Citizen
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Village : Kirigakure
Ryo : 30650

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Sat Oct 30, 2021 4:38 pm
A long silence in which Koutaku found it hard to breathe passed before the door slid open and he could once more see his friend--safe and sound. Relief flooded him, and then as he entered, she took him into an embrace and he stood there blinking in shock for a moment before returning the gesture. It was strange, being that close to another person, the warmth of their body a comforting heat against his own. As she pulled away, he let her go without protest, just glad that she was whole. Her words spilled over him and he nodded his assent, turning and slipping the door closed behind him. Then, exhausted by the tremendous weight he’d been holding--which had now been released by her presence--Koutaku let himself sit on the floor with his back against the wall.

“Yeah, I remember it too...vividly. Almost more real than anything I’ve experienced before it,” he swallowed hard and the room drifted into silence as he tilted his head back, leaning it against the wall behind him. His breathing steadied, no longer hitching in his throat on occasion and he realized that a part of him felt like crying. He didn’t let himself though, for he knew that not all was well, not yet. Things were still faintly off, ever so slightly unhinged, surreal...unreal.

“Takashi, I think...I don’t think this is...entirely real either.” He confessed, meeting her gaze. Some of the steel she’d seen in his gaze in that terrible nightmare remained. It seemed that the experience--real or not--had changed him, left its own indelible mark that was just as real as they were, even if this was indeed some sort of twisted dream or illusion. Then, eyeing her a moment, he let his head lean back once more. He closed his eyes.

“You uh, you should get dressed. I don’t think this is over, and we should be ready for anything.”

Idly, he extracted a kunai from his belt pouch and began to spin it between fingers, clearly fidgeting despite the fact that he was not willing to leave while she put on something decent. Takashi knew him though, it wasn’t out of some lewd fascination with her--or any woman’s--body, but rather out of a general unwillingness to be alone after what they’d been through. He couldn’t stomach it, couldn’t imagine having a barrier between them where the whole world could change in an instant.

“I’ll stay like this until you’re done…. I just...I don’t trust anyone else in this place right now. I don’t know if they’re real, like we are.” He swallowed again, clenching his eyes shut a moment to suppress the tears that wished to fall. His body shuddered once before he steadied himself.

In the back of his mind, some small part of him whispered a terrible possibility.

But what if she’s just a dream as well.

Spoiler:


Last edited by Koutaku on Sun Oct 31, 2021 5:12 am; edited 1 time in total
Takashi
Takashi
Citizen
Stat Page : Takashi's Stats
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Clan Specialty : Bukijutsu
Village : Kirigakure
Ryo : 56000

A Journey Beyond [P] - Page 3 Empty Re: A Journey Beyond [P]

Sat Oct 30, 2021 5:35 pm
Takashi nodded along thoughtfully to what Koutaku was saying, glancing around her room as he voiced his suspicions about the veracity of the world. She began to scrutinise little details about her familiar bedroom, looking down into her weaver’s kit to check its familiar compartments of dyes and threads. She broke away from Koutaku while he was still speaking to sit on her bed and open it, eyes trained steadily downwards as she looked at all of the colours in order, trying them against the patterns she was so familiar with in reality. She thought for just a moment that they did, but something in their perception shifted subtly and she realised it was exactly like the note that she’d handed to the old woman in the hotel--it was indistinct nonsense that the dream had made her interpret in a specific way. She focused on the finer details of the world around her, and as she extended her senses outwards she realised that he was right to have been suspicious of the reprieve they’d apparently been given.

She performed a few handseals in order and her nightclothes were happily removed from her person and replaced immediately with a fresh set of ninja gear, minus the scarf she normally wore. She clutched her hands up to her neck to feel for its presence but found that it wasn’t there, and she eyed the room suspiciously to see if it had fallen off somewhere, still slightly clinging to the hope that it might not be gone. When her search yielded no results she sighed and sat on the bed, bringing her hands together in the familiar posture of a weaver as she began to spin a new scarf for her to use in battle. The process took mere moments, each second passing in tense silence as the pair of friends basked in the warmth and comfort of one another’s presence. Knowing that someone who’d experienced what you had was there was a tremendous comfort, and she did not feel the need to further sully the air with their presence. Who knew what else they’d find in this ethereal hellscape..? Once she’d finished Takashi placed the scarf around her shoulders, then walked up to Koutaku with a steely glint in her eyes to match his.

“It’s us against whatever this dream world is. We find the source and we crush it--it is an abomination that cannot be suffered to continue. Kinuko would say it affects the balance… but honestly? I want revenge. I want to make sure it never makes anyone suffer like that again.” the words trickled out of Takashi’s mouth slowly, thoughtfully, as she psyched herself up. She had to steel herself to get through this--she had to do her duty to the village and to the balance of the world. Her left hand grasped Koutaku’s right firmly, squeezing it in affirmation of her ersatz vow. She was ready.

Spoiler:
Koutaku
Koutaku
Citizen
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Village : Kirigakure
Ryo : 30650

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Sat Oct 30, 2021 6:06 pm
Eyes closed until she clasped his hand, Koutaku silently considered the various discrepancies he’d essentially been forced to shelf due to more important matters up until now. The hazy and indistinct nature of the buildings in the night, the disconnected way people moved, themselves included, seeming to suddenly arrive in locations instantly as if space had warped to meet their needs. Sudden shifts in locale, streets that were deserted when they shouldn’t have been. Time shifts as they rapidly went from day to night in seemingly random changes in scenery and environs. The ghost...dying, but still being there living and breathing. Then little details, like the indistinct nonsense that had been on the paper from the dead man, or the way that no one had discovered the fellow before them as if he’d been placed there only moments before just for them to discover.

The way they hadn’t heard or seen anyone else up until this point with the exception of what amounted to placeholders. It was like they were facsimiles of people, false or on autopilot. If he paid close attention when they spoke or moved he’d noticed that their words were similarly nonsense, or just on a loop. Their motions weren’t robotic, but they seemed glitched...off in some hard to pin down manner. None of it was right. The symbols that Takashi had described on the moon, they pointed towards something else, something insidious that had taken ahold of them, snaring them in this nightmare.

As Takashi took his hand, Koutaku opened his eyes, taking that as the signal it was that things were safe for him to look. Meeting her gaze, he found that he was further relieved to be in this with someone as close to him as Takashi. It made all this easier to stomach, she grounded him and simultaneously buoyed him against the horrors of this strange hellish realm. Just as her words helped her build up her own courage, they had a similar effect on Koutaku. In tangent with the harsh memory of his sacrifice--regardless of its exact nature or his precise intentions--it reminded him that he was capable of whatever he set his mind to. That he wasn’t powerless, even in this place that must have largely been under someone else’s control.

Rising to his feet, still clasping her hand, Koutaku nodded, his expression firm and filled with willful defiance.

“Agreed, I don’t much like my mind being tampered with. So let’s see how they feel when we not only meddle in, but destroy their well-laid plans.”

With those words said, he squeezed her hand once and held her gaze for a long moment before turning towards the door and sliding it open. Smelling something rotten, Koutaku deftly slipped open his weapons pouched, extracted three kunai, and tossed one over his shoulder such that Takashi could catch it. Then, as the door fully opened and a shambling corpse was revealed, Koutaku lunged forwards and drove the weapon into the thing with such force that the walking corpse was driven backward and into the wall even as it became truly inanimate and crumpled in a heap to the ground.

“I have a feeling they know we’re onto them. Nonetheless, we’ll have to play along. Only engage if necessary, let’s make our way to the graveyard. I have a hunch.”

Darting from the room, Koutaku extracted his kunai with a skillfully placed wire and dashed down the hall. Any resistance he met was dealt with or dodged. He knew Takashi could hold her own and there was simply no reason to engage every one of the corrupted bodies.

Spoiler:


Last edited by Koutaku on Sun Oct 31, 2021 5:13 am; edited 1 time in total
Takashi
Takashi
Citizen
Stat Page : Takashi's Stats
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Clan Specialty : Bukijutsu
Village : Kirigakure
Ryo : 56000

A Journey Beyond [P] - Page 3 Empty Re: A Journey Beyond [P]

Sat Oct 30, 2021 6:46 pm
Takashi caught the kunai deftly, her left hand reaching out to grab it as her right hand performed the one-handed seals necessary to activate Yokoito Sōsa. The newly minted scarf animated itself with bright white cords of chakra, and Takashi flowed her chakra through it to achieve lethally keen edges. She flowed chakra through the kunai also, certain that she’d need it to interact with the environment in some manner. As Koutaku opened the door and reduced what looked like a walking corpse into a disgusting pile of misplaced limbs and bones she darted out after him on high alert. The edges of the scarf tailed behind her as she dashed, occasionally flicking back in little loops and whorls to avoid hitting some of the shambling corpses that seemed to be manifesting around them as their environment flickered and rippled with change. The rules of how they moved in this place were still unclear, but as long as they followed the dream deeper it seemed to draw them closer and closer to its centre where its insidious will was more real. Out here in the boundaries of the experience it felt more muted, only ambiently terrible rather than invasively so.

She moved through the familiar halls of her clan’s estate deftly, scarf occasionally tapping on Koutaku’s shoulder to guide him as she weaved her way through passages that were not immediately obvious in the silk-lined halls. It seemed that while the buildings each had modern frames and fillings, much of the exterior of the structure was covered in fine layers of richly coloured woven silks. The wind rustled through them in such a way as to animate the beautifully stitched artwork, and little ripples of movement barely perceptible beneath the rustling waves of silk alluded to hidden movement within that made the whole building seem connected in unseen ways. Takashi knew almost all of these tunnels herself, and was even capable of making new ones practically on the fly--she dipped herself and Koutaku into one such corridor that took them on a winding route through the walls of the building into an exit on the west side of the building.

As they travelled down it they had a brief reprieve from the constant moaning and shuffling of the corpses, and she allowed herself to voice a quick thought to her friend: “I think we just need to… let ourselves believe we’re in the graveyard. The dream wants to draw us closer in, so its power is stronger over us. We can direct that desire to somewhere useful if we focus, I think?”

Spoiler:
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