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1Two Clouds At Sea. Empty Two Clouds At Sea. on Mon Jul 29, 2019 12:55 am




Two Clouds At Sea. Anime-background-scenery-clouds_97583

He was just outside his apartment, going on near the main road. Chiaki and himself were supposed to spend the day together. He’d given her his address, but he decided to just stand out in the open and wait for her.

It was a little embarrassing, he thought, to have a completely barren home. Nothing but chocolate cosmos, a sofa and a lamp. And nothing he’d want someone as confident and put-together as she was, to see.  He wasn’t materialistic by any means, but he didn’t think decorating was mawkish. It just wasn’t something on the forefront. For now at least.

A bright sun. Already he could feel his forehead going slick with sweat. He couldn’t feel the pain of the hot day, but he could feel it whenever his clothes got damp and clung to him. That alone was enough to warrant a mesh shirt for the day. Typical shorts and wrappings to swathe his thighs and legs. His blue markings were visible through the shirt’s netting. It shouldn’t be an issue anyways.

A single puddle pooled on the street. A sign of rain a few days ago. Xion looked at his reflection, his eyes that shone the color of ivory, the weirdest of his traits. He’d brushed his hair for this day out, surprisingly. Snow white locks that always danced in between an ice or opaque snow,, so that it now was worn in faint waves than curls. His skin was as deep as usual, hiding any natural imperfections. 

He walked with some momentum, he was in a good mood. Come to think of it, he wasn’t particularly nonchalant about meeting up with her. Well, not as nonchalant as he usually was. She’d captivated his interest since they met in the forest some months ago. Ever since then, he’d come to realize that she was very well rounded, capable of adapting to any situation. He was more used to underhanded remarks and pity than genuine kindness. So there meeting was a much needed change of pace.

If he could put what he had been feeling into words he’d say that there was kindness in her smile, a gentleness. It was the smile of one who laughed with ease and saw a person under their behaviour, a soul-connector. She was the kind of person who lived how she believed people should, as if she were sunshine that only radiated from the best aspects of those she met, their flaws entirely invisible to her gaze. He hadn’t met too many people like that since he’d been here among the Shinobi world. She was a calm sea, dancing birdsong and the new buds of spring. Yet, most of all, she still had the will to fight. And fight well.

He couldn’t help but grin. She was a lot like his first father. Kind and gentle, but never let his pupil relax just yet. And he made sure that one knew not to repay his kindness with malice.

She seemed to be in direct conflict with other Ninja he’d met. Shinobi were inherently cold and calloused. Hardened warriors, trained blades, and the coldest hearts. It was the natural order of things though, he thought. Weakness seemed to be a thing people despised more than an empty stomach and harsh nights. Paling in comparison to the elements. To put it simply, one would rather die a hero, than return a failure. A golden rule he didn’t quite understand. Even someone like him who could not register wounds or their scale, still valued his own life. Maybe he was being stubborn. If he wanted to become as strong the people he once knew, and the people he knew now, then perhaps he should be more open-minded. 

Each step he took kicked up coarse dirt behind him. Even with rain just days ago the earth was already thirsty. Pity to any vagabonds.

Xion’s expression was rigid as his stoic eyes brooked the sun. Already moving to the west. “You sure like to take your time eh?--Chiaki.”

WC: 694


Reality is the finest flesh, O'reader mine.

2Two Clouds At Sea. Empty Re: Two Clouds At Sea. on Tue Jul 30, 2019 12:17 am



Chiaki awoke with a start, and a snort. She had been snoring and, wiping the dribble of spittle from her mouth she blearily looked around the room, her eyes attempting to adjust to her surroundings, albeit poorly. She yawned, stretching in the light of the morning, the dew she could see cascaded off of the roof tops of the village hidden in the leaves. She wondered what she was going to be up to today.

Groping around blindly, or rather, not wanting to see, she picked her way around with her hands until she hit the desk with her fingertips. Recoiling in pain she put them in her mouth and suckled them, glaring at it. Noticing the paper there with a note to her, it had Xion's address. Oh, right, she was supposed to meet him. She stretched again, another yawn breaking her concentration and she looked at the clock.

Shite! It was that time already!? Chiaki bolted out of bed, her long blue hair cascading around her as she ran out of the room, her billowing nighty behind her as she slipped on the rug in front of the bathroom and bowled straight into the kitchen on her side, knocking over the two bar stools there, and tossing the contents of one, a bunch of overdue papers on it, around the room. Groaning, she untangled herself from one of the stools, it had landed on her back, pinning her right hand behind her, and righted herself, placing the stools back in their places.

Bruised, but not hurt, more bruised in pride than in body, she growled as she bent low to pick up the papers, her nighty getting in the way once or twice as she did so. All of the papers back in their places, she stumbled out of the kitchen, not because she was asleep or feeling sleepy any longer, but because of her battered and bruised pride, and her stiff muscles from being whipped around by her own momentum.

Her dad's voice crept into her head, "A rushed job only makes twice the work." She shook her head to get it out of there, she knew that already, but she had reason to try to rush. Sighing and looking at the clock, she had no reason to rush, she supposed. She was already late.

Kicking the door aside with the outside of her foot, she stepped into the bathroom, shrugging off her nighty and starting the water. She wanted a hot shower so that she could perhaps loosen some of the sore muscles, now, and perhaps rinse off some of the hot mess that she had made of herself that morning. Chiaki wasn't all that impressed with the person that she saw in the mirror and opted out of her morning check to see if she had grown any. She hadn't, she knew it.

Chiaki knew why she had slept in, it was because she was getting less and less good sleep since… well… since that happened. She put her hands against the shower walls and watched as the water rolled off of her in rivulets, arching her back to let the hot water cascade down her small frame. She didn’t want to get out, wanted to stay there all day. But bills don’t pay themselves. She reminded herself of that once or twice before she finally got out, having scrubbed all of the nightly grime from herself.

Her fingers worked like clockwork as she started to get out, already pulling at her hair and twisting it into smaller braids, before bringing it to the top of her head, grabbing her towel with one hand, she wrapped it around herself, holding it closed with her teeth as she opened her drawer and put her hair into a braided bun. She would let it out today at some point, and it was a cheap way of getting her hair, usually wavy, to curl it.

She looked at herself again in the mirror, her pink and tanned skin standing out in stark contrast to the towel that she was holding in her teeth, which was a pale teal color. She lifted a leg onto the toilet and inspected her tan lines. She had been wearing a bathing suit when she had gone out, but she probably should go to a tanning salon to get rid of the ridiculous lines that she had formed from baking herself in the sun a couple days in a row. After all, she needed to make sure that if she went out she didn’t have clashing tan lines.

Chewing her bottom lip and putting her towel away, she gathered her nightie up and tossed it in the dirty laundry hamper, which was in the closet. She buried herself, picking out some comfortable clothes, ones that she didn’t mind getting dirty if she was to spar with Xion again. She hadn’t had a good spar with him in a while, and she wondered how much he had learned since last time.

A smile lit her face, as she remembered their last battle, and how she had knocked herself out. She even chuckled audibly about it, as she pulled a sock over her heel and up her leg, it fit snugly and stopped at mid-thigh.

Slipping into some shoes, she inspected the outfit that she had picked out. It was going to be a sunny and bright day, so she had opted for a bright and sunny outfit, a sundress, plain yellow with a sinched waist held together by a string that came with the dress was her choice. She had picked out a little blue bralet that could be seen underneath, but was lacy enough to be fashionable, and was really, meant to be seen and have the characteristics of an undershirt. Chiaki had also picked out a pair of horizontally striped blue and white socks, which were tucked into some black shoes with golden buckles that held them to her feet. She looked herself up and down and nodded to herself.

Walking to the bathroom, she threw on some mascara and eyeliner, put some lip gloss on and packed all of them into her bag should she need a touch up later and blinked. She finally grabbed her keys and took a cursory look through her apartment, it was a bit of a mess, but she would have to leave it like that to be at least a little bit on time for Xion.

She sighed and took to the roofs, jumping off of her balcony from her stairs onto another roof, and took off. She didn’t know exactly where she was going, only that she had the address. The damned address! She groaned and spun on her heel, digging into the tiled rooftop, making the tiles creak and break under her heel as she jetted back to her front door, fumbled with her keys and unlocked it again.

She fast-walked through the apartment, making sure not to have a repeat of what happened earlier and nabbed up the piece of paper that she had written his address on. Perhaps she wouldn’t be so late? She winced while looking at the clock, hoping to the great sages that she wouldn’t be too late.

Sighing, she figured that she would have a hard time making it there in good time, but she didn’t figure on being this late. Speed walking back out, she jammed the keys into the door, dead bolting it again and took off across the roof tops.

Attempt two.

As she sped over the city, some of the puddles caught her eye as she looked around for the house that she had been given the address for. She wondered where she would find the youth and as she jumped across the roof tops, the puddles illuminated her. Chiaki flew like a blue bird across them as easily as breathing, having done this for a good while now.

She spyed Xion, probably before he did her, and changed her trajectory to intercept him. She jumped, holding her hands in front of her, holding her dress tight to her crotch so as not to give the entire street a view of her panties, she landed softly next to him, giving a small wave and smile.

“Good to see you Xion.” She fussed with her dress, making sure that she didn’t look as rushed as she felt. “It’s been a little bit since we last met. How’s the training been?”

She mentally scolded herself, but it was true that their relationship had started with him training, and that it really had grown into a relationship of steel sharpening steel, where she had helped him grow through training, and he her. Was it enough to apologize now for that? No, it was too late now, it would look like back tracking.

Stupid. She chastized herself.

“So where are we headed?” She tilted her head and pulled back a stray hair that had escaped her tight bun on the top of her head, secured by a hair tie and two decorative senbon.

WC: 1534

3Two Clouds At Sea. Empty Re: Two Clouds At Sea. on Thu Aug 01, 2019 2:59 am




He heard a collapse. Wind rushed behind him. Xion pivots on his foot; it was Chiaki. Looking bright-eyed and bushy-tailed as usual. A dress as yellow as any sunflower, immodest-lacy straps. She actually--looked nice.

“Are you late? Or was it me who forgot the time? Strange. I’m not really sure if I’m over-analyzing things--”. His eyes trailed over her form. Both of them were dressed for a hot day out. A faint breeze caught her hair just at the ends. When he stole another glance she was flawless, fair skin and eyes that shone brightly -- making Xion want to get to know the person within.  He watched her move, there was something of the warrior in her combined with a gentleness that made her heart reach out.

“--But--I’m not usually this forgetful. Usually.”  His facial expression was one of absolute stoism. He wasn’t sure if he admired or simply tolerated her. But he knew he didn’t mind her presence. His face may read to her that she was less than the mud on his sandals, but that wasn’t the case at all. He played with the netting of his shirt, with a face of utter nonchalance, as if he were merely waiting for a bus on a spring day, cosmo in hand. He isn't slumped at all, his body is clearly too slender for that, yet it is just as relaxed as his face. He's almost smiling. Well--almost.

He offered her the chocolate cosmo, eyes flush of emotion, but then something flashed beneath the surface of his hardened expression. Up until she arrived, one could describe his facial expression as a blank sheet of paper. He could have been in a coma for all the life his face showed. But the way he greeted her, bright eyed. Emotion that he struggled to hide. “I wanted to go into town. Maybe to the coffee shop we went to a while back.” He paced forward, sure she would follow. 

Secretly he had an itinerary of things he wanted to get done, but he’d never had the urge to want to do these things with anyone else. Not until recently. And he couldn't think of anyone else to invite. Strange. Was this some jutsu of her’s, he thought. There wasn’t anything particularly extraordinary about her. The only person whom he’d ever willingly “hung out” with was Kvothe. And in that same breathe, trained with.Then he thought, It never is the event that defines what happens after, yet the attitudes and manner of those involved. He’d had a long standing belief that fate was never left to chance, and that everyone was merely guided to their proper places. Was this his place? Here in this point of time?

Eh, could be worse. 

One can meet challenge with humility, grace and a brave soul... or one can do the opposite. And though these things are never easy, that each time is significant and important, and one would only need trust to get themselves through. No one is capable of knowing the future, but they do get to choose their response and how open they are to learning the lesson and emerging more empathetic than they were before.

He looked up at the blue, hoping that Kvothe could rest easy. He’d made a friend. His mood only got better. On this fine day they were walking down the street under a sun that warms their skin in the same vain as the market pastries brings warmth to one’s core. Music comes from a radio, distorted. Distant. Yet somehow the background ambiance is clean, as if this music was the pastries upon a white tablecloth, the tune dancing in the same way a fragrance does.

White heaven-bound birds were as brilliant rays from wind-dappled sky; their brightness amid otherwise infinite blue, gliding as free souls. In each wing-given arc they were the tips of a conductor's wand, a music for both eyes and soul, bringing a wave of sweet earthly joy. It was one of those baby-blue skies, not the psychedelic candy-blue nor the washed out grey so characteristic of wintry mornings. The clouds were as puffs of radiant joy, ready to disperse into the wind, to travel Earth. His eyes, no lighter or darker than the white puffs themselves, watched the clouds eddy, pure reflected rays dappled and swirling with the sky, until all that remained was that perfect baby-blue, the same hue as before, as if inviting those born of wing to ride warm currents up above..

Birds chirped, leaves rustled, men cried out their wears. The usual white noise.  “Have you been here in this place? All your life?” He asked. “Sorry if that seems forward. You’re just very--interesting to me.”

WC: 819/1513


Reality is the finest flesh, O'reader mine.

4Two Clouds At Sea. Empty Re: Two Clouds At Sea. on Tue Aug 06, 2019 10:13 am



“I am a tad late, yes.” She nodded solemnly and gave an apologetic smile, “I am sorry, I tried to make it on time, but you know how things get in the mornings around here.” She giggled a bit, hoping to break the tension.

“Ah, I don’t tend to analyze things enough.” She nodded a bit and blinked to his admittance, “It’s alright, it is a hot day, a nice thing that we have such nice weather. It makes us lazy, and forgetful sometimes, you know?” She just shook her head and smiled.

She looked at the chocolate cosmo and blinked as he was offering it to her, “I ah, is this for me?” She took it dumbly and smiled, turning a bit of a shade of red before she nodded, “as for coffee would be nice, and going into town is always good. Are you looking for anything in particular or just looking around?” She asked, because she had no idea what they were to to with the day, but she was excited to be out and about with a friend.

“I am pretty much up for anything at this point to get over the monotony of the day to day.”
She shrugged, “And I told the hospital that I was taking the day off. They asked me if I would be there tonight, but you know what?” She put her finger to her lips and looked up as he did, he was lost in his thoughts, but she was still in that moment there, “I don’t think I will.” She nodded to herself and then, only then she relaxed and basked in the glow of the day for a bit with Xion.

WC: 1848

5Two Clouds At Sea. Empty Re: Two Clouds At Sea. on Tue Aug 13, 2019 2:24 pm




People walk through the quieter streets so differently. Some almost skip, so exquisite is their joy of leaving for whatever their day may bring. Others walk as if they are boarding a badly kept bus, no more exciting than any other commute. Then there are the nervous ones, quick steps and stern faces, everything about them tight and fearful.

Xion paid attention to these types, and to Chiaki. Ten years ago, he could remember he smiled as he walked, now he might dare say, he wept inside for those times passed. People walk like soldiers even to buy wheat and vegetables, eyes hard, mouth set in a grim line. Anyone with energy were only those who advertised their wares. When he was younger he could recall that he beamed at everyone, friend and stranger. He’d slap backs and shook hands, chatted over glasses of pale tea and wished blessings to others. He felt like something in his chest that used to burgeon there was missing. It is as if they have been driven so deep into his person that it wasn’t even able to surface at all. He knew what changed him, he just didn’t know what part of himself he'd lost.

Chiaki said that she turned down a shift just to enjoy a day with him. To be perfectly honest, he didn’t really care what she was talking about. He didn’t have the need for small talk, nor was he good at it. But the words about the hospital brought him a thought. About when she said she’d taken a life. He didn’t want to pry, but that experience of her’s interested him. He taken one as well. A long time ago. But only because he thought he was protecting home, his memories. Everything he’d ever known. What were her motives, he wondered. Would she even want to talk about it? People like her don’t just walk away from something like that without scars. Afterall, it’s an experience that doesn’t leave you completely normal afterwards. Despite one’s reason.

He had to figure out a way to frame this. Approach this in a way where she didn’t feel forced to say anything she’d rather not. “What do you think about Kumo, and the decisions made by Lord Thirteenth? When I was stationed at an outpost, it was pretty unremarkable. Lots of--fire, though.”

He was watching her from over his shoulder. His expression was of one being forced to endure an unpleasant odor. His gaze was unwavering and unabashed. Those icy eyes behind dark pupils did not travel up to her face or down to her boots, but they followed her as if really focusing on something a couple of feet further away. Perhaps his introspective nature lead him to be locked in thought as he observed, it was hard to know. But he made no gesture of recognition, no raised hand or stiff nod. Her pace was close behind his. He’d pry, stopping when she seemed burdened by emotion.

“I remember not feeling as though I was briefed on everything. Going there solely on orders. Don’t you think that’s true, Chiaki?”

WC: 538/2051


Reality is the finest flesh, O'reader mine.

6Two Clouds At Sea. Empty Re: Two Clouds At Sea. on Sun Aug 18, 2019 10:45 pm



"I think." Chiaki looked down, trying to answer his question, her brow knitted together and she grit her teeth. A faint pulse came from her, a faint hint of the anger she had, "I think that it was despicable what the konoha ninja did to the land hidden in the clouds. There were innocents there, people who had lives, just like ours, just like the people of this village." She closed her eyes, "It was like a coming storm hit a monsoon. It was both inevitable and everyone saw it coming, and it was unexpected and no one did. Takao took off towards the land hidden in the clouds much before I did, but because I was halfway there already, I was able to get right behind him, to see the great monkey battle the great dragon. I was there to see a child die in my arms, and to heal someone without my jutsu."

She flexed her hands and stared at them, through them, to the battlefield, "And I wasn't briefed on anything except that I was needed at the front lines. I saved I don't know how many people, but it wasn't enough. There was death, chaos, decay, burned bodies and bodies split asunder everywhere. It was, in a word, hell. But that is cliche and doesn't lend itself to anything here. I suppose what I am getting at is, unless you were there, you couldn't understand the horrors of it."

"I was right on the edge of the action, right on the edge of all that fire, all that wind that tore mountains apart and cascaded everywhere. I was probably taken far away from the battle but by the time that the smoke settled and I regained consciousness, It was all dim and grey. I am not sure that the clouds were all water, as they hung heavy in the air, and the snow was so heavily laden with ash that it was black by the time it hit the ground. The whole of the village hidden in the clouds was just... black, and scarred."

She looked to Xion, "And that, was what happened on the sixteenth's warpath. That was what happened to the village hidden in the clouds, no games, no punches pulled, just the raw truth."

WC: 2235

7Two Clouds At Sea. Empty Re: Two Clouds At Sea. on Wed Aug 28, 2019 6:32 pm




Xion’s own frontier had been totally unremarkable, if he were to be vocal about it. Nothing eventful happened at any point. All he’d done was arrive at the outpost and rummage through the charred remnants. He had seen the ashes, and he did see the blaze not too far off in the distance.

He responded in a thin voice, “So--that’s what that was about.”

He watched her hold out her arms and just--stare. Riveting, honestly. He could visibly see how compelling the experience had been for her. She looked like she couldn't breath, like someone might have their hands around her neck. He could tell her heart was racing and that all she wanted to do was curl up into a ball and wait for someone to save her. But no one would. No one was there. A choked cry for help could force itself up her throat at any moment. It seemed as if this was the end of the road for her. 

He had a thought. Why should someone like her be on the front lines? What did the Sixteenth have for her, and what did she have for him? It definitely made him think. If so, he hadn’t realized she was mingling with high-ranking officials. She was certainly heading all the way to the top.

He pried a little more. “I--guess that’s enough of that. Say, have you and the Hokage been talking directly? You said you were ‘right-behind him’ after all. I know you’re a medical kunoichi, so it’s beneficial to have you around in a fight. But with him? In the frontline of all places? Strange.”

‘Shaper of Wishes, O’ coveter mine. She is equally as guilty. You can see it in her fair hands. She knows! She is a brother-slayer!--”

Xion covered his ear. Like someone trying to cease the ringing. He answered meekly, “She’s not.”

‘--SPAWN-KILLER! Annihilator. Murderer. She consumed their lives, along with their [dreams]. Their [desires]. Fulfilling the unholy union between the eater and eaten. Does that not make you burn with envy? You’ve been bereft of that flavor, Xeol--Xion. Just what will she do now that she and her victims are bonded for the rest of her life?-- ”

There was a voice, and then, instantly, there was nothing. This tedious repetition of phrases and anathema, afflicted him. But they weren’t without their reason. And he agreed.

But what was the point? She was right. He believed to the same vain, that whomever had lost their lives, that they once had--lives. Mundane things. Decisions that in the grand scheme were insignificant. But routine. [Tedious repetition]. The right to swing one’s arm should stop at another’s nose, correct?

“No turning back time now.” Xion said, curtly. “Well, if I were as close to him as you were, that would be something I reminded him of. I’d tell him that we gave him everything he wanted. Everything he needed in that moment.--”

He smiled, perhaps at the wrong time. “--Afterall, don’t you think that this is all a wager? Just think for a minute, you could do what he wants you to, which is wrong, right? Or you could do so much more than what he bargained for. Besides, those who makes bargains must always be prepared to lose them. Remember that.”

He thought back to his old home. Before The Wolves, he remembered a time when sunlight bathed the surface of the wen. Rays touching everything at one time or another, boundless, almost endless energy travelling even to the smallest regions of that fragile city. What a rich and contrasting world he lived in, before that women came. Claiming to be queen. Mother nature had strength then, the progression of life seemed unstoppable. And he thought that dark part of his life had drowned in the light. But the dark is a like a curtain that closes on the colors that play in the sun. Unwillingly, it always returns to the dark. Even now, it seemed like they were playing with fire. Darkness has taken its stranglehold, squeezing life and consuming his good thoughts, turning them into forgotten lost dreams. The only thing that stopped Her back then was lethal force. But the Hokage’s strength, sounded, smelled, looked, insurmountable. Tested and earned ire that like any mountain, did not just simply bow.

Xion said in a thin voice. “I don’t think I trust him.”

WC: 757/2808


Reality is the finest flesh, O'reader mine.

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