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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Lost Without a Place, Without a Home [Northern]
PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 4:37 am GMT 
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The sun had begun to sink beneath the skyline, the buildings glinting gold in the dying light as the streets emptied. The soft clack of the wooden geta echoed off the buildings as Takumi made his slow way down the sidewalk. The weather had begun to turn colder and he pulled his haori closer, bowing his head against the wind; for once, the furisode hardly helped to calm him. He brushed his long hair from his eyes, glancing up to find the door that he was searching for, and pushing it open and slipping into the warm interior.

He made his way into the bar almost as though he was sleep walking. The low, almost smokey lighting of the bar played off the deep purple of the furisode he wore, highlighting the hazy flowers and the faint backdrop of mountains on the fabric around his legs and ankles, the darari obi a striking burnished gold that shimmered in the flickering light. His hair was piled loosely on the top of his head, the dark strands falling gently into his face, and spilling over his shoulders. In his hair was a simple kanzashi - not like the maiko of Gion; that would seem far too fancy for this place - but an elegant trail of small flowers and a comb. They were light blue. After all, what did tradition mean here? His face, though, was still done in the usual make-up of a maiko, to seem all the more exotic to these foreigners. The furisode hung low on the nape of his neck, baring his slender neck.

He ordered some drink or another - wasn't even sure what it was that he ordered. He didn't care. It wasn't saké.

Even the memory of saké was fading now, he could barely remember how it tasted. All he wanted, now, was the memory of home and something that would take this place away from him for a while. The liquid burned the back of his throat in a way the saké never had but he didn't stop, didn't care.

His thoughts turned, gyred into old thoughts, things lost. There was a sharp sting at the back of his eyes not caused by the amber liquid in the glass. The sounds in the speak were flickering in his ear now - oddly loud one moment and suspiciously absent the next - until one laugh was heard above the others and he swung his head back to try and catch sight, both hoping and dreading to see a familiar face among these strangers.

She always used to laugh. He remembered; she never seemed to stop that snickering, mischievous, playful laugh that he'd grown so fond of over the years, that he missed so desperately now. That laugh that no one would likely ever hear again. Yuzuki, after all, was dead by her own admittance. She was Xuán now, she'd said. She'd erased everything but her face and Takumi ached, mourning his friend.

A sigh slipped from him as he turned back to the bar.

In a way, he was mourning his own fate. One did not, after all, leave the yakuza. He knew, if he ever saw Yuzuki again then things would end poorly and he would have to follow the traditions. Those damn traditions. . .those traditions that ruled his life, even in this place, so far away from his father. It was fear of the man that kept the charade from ending. When he closed his eyes, he could still see the man's cruel sneer, the words spat at him in the privacy of their home, when the men were gone, when Daisuke was gone, when they were entirely alone with only the iei of his mother.

His grip on the glass tightened then, and he desperately took another gulp of alcohol. The things that no one knew haunted him yet, the horrors of that house that he could never escape.

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What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

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 Post subject: Re: Lost Without a Place, Without a Home [Northern]
PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2013 8:10 am GMT 
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Don had already been sitting in the bar an hour, most of the time he had spent with Magnus discussing business. When the man had gone home to take his dogs out for a walk Don had decided to stay behind, nursing a drink and mulling over some of the things he and the other man had been talking about. Their first shipment of alcohol had come through from their favourite apothecary, and was now waiting in a warehouse; Magnus' plan had been to use it as payment in an attempt to eke out a territory for themselves, or buy their way in to someone elses. But caution and patience were important, they didn't want to attract unnecessary attention until they had enough footing to not be pushed over, to this last crucial step was still not taken. Not to mention that they had tested their luck enough by setting up business with Denmark Jones.

Sighing slightly the big man leaned back a little in his chair, only to have his attention grabbed by a loud, female laugh in the crowd behind him. Turning his head to look at the source he briefly touched at the thought that it could be Carmen; but he doubted the woman would laugh like that. It was too childish in a way, and the girl didn't look dignified enough to be his sister. But when he turned his head the large Frenchman's eyes were caught by something a great deal more colourful by the bar. Someone else had looked towards the laughing girl and Don was instantly drawn towards them, his body turning a little in his chair.

The woman was younger than him, as far as he could tell from this distance, and she wore a dress and a kind of make-up vastly different from the others in the bar, making her stand out quite harshly; not to mention someone of such delicate appearance did not seem to fit in to theses surroundings. She looked a little bit like a flower to him, and caused a curiosity he had not felt in quite a while rise in him. He couldn't help that he smiled faintly at the image of the young woman, first deciding he would leave her be until he noticed the way she poured the alcohol down her throat. The smile faded in to a soft frown and he wondered if perhaps she did not only fit in here, she ought perhaps not even be there in the first place. Someone who drank like that should not be drinking. Interference was not always appreciated, the possibility that she would ask him to leave was big but perhaps a bit of positive attention would at least slow the drinking.

Carefully the big man got to his feet, emptying his glass to have an excuse to approach the bar. He was hard to miss as he made his slow way through the room and then leaned lightly against the bar; he stood a good head taller than most other men, and typically a great deal heavier in his appearance than them too. It was easy to tell that under the slightly strained shirt it was not much unnecessary bulk however. The Frenchman was strong, that was no secret, reminiscent of a bull in some aspects as he was. But like a bull, there was a certain calm in his face, something that said that if you were brave enough to try his patience, you would most likely have to try hard before you'd achieve anything.

"Another of these," Don told the bartender, gesturing with his glass slightly, and turning his eyes to Takumi. "And... perhaps a glass of wine for the lady?"

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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Re: Lost Without a Place, Without a Home [Northern]
PostPosted: Thu Feb 19, 2015 8:17 pm GMT 
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The grip of memories lessened with the sudden presence of the large man. It was strange to see someone so large – he still wasn’t used to how tall some of these Westerners were. Despite this, he hardly gave the man more than an absent glance before looking back to his empty glass and the way his fingers smudged it. He didn’t even acknowledge the glass of wine that the bartender dutifully set before him. Interruptions were not appreciated; Takumi took a less desperate gulp of his drink and frowned.

It was nearly gone – he hadn’t realized, so caught up in his thoughts and memories. Again, his eyes were drawn to the glass of wine and he wondered if an interruption – a distraction – was as irritating as he thought. Perhaps he could even forget properly, even if just for the night, and if not then there was at least free alcohol to be had from it as long as the stranger believed him to be a woman. Steeling himself, he turned just enough to offer the stranger a small, confused smile that – thought he tried – did not reach his eyes.

“Thank you,” he murmured, keeping his voice light and feminine; he took a tentative sip of the wine. It was almost sweet, and a bit dry, with no burn whatsoever. He ran his tongue slowly over his lips to savor the taste, his eyes taking in the much larger man. “You…did not need to do this.”

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Play it across the table
What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

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is a spider-child
 Post subject: Re: Lost Without a Place, Without a Home [Northern]
PostPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2015 2:13 pm GMT 
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Don offered a soft smile and a slight nod in response, leaning slightly on the bar as he sipped his own drink. "It is my pleasure," he said, eyes drifting over the woman's face, taking in the colour of her eyes; they seemed almost black in this dimly lit bar, and he liked how they were slanted at the corners. She truly was an exotic flower, a splash of colour in the middle of all the grime and colourlessness of this city. It felt like a long time since he had seen something like her, that had made him so fascinated.

"If you wish me to leave you alone, that is okay," he then added on. "But I could not help but notice you when you walked in." Instead of turning towards her Don stayed facing the bar as he offered a hand to take hers in. He found people he didn't know seemed to become less nervous when he wasn't facing them head on, and by now it was an unconscious choice he made when interacting with strangers, or at the very least strangers he didn't actually want to have leave him alone. "My name is Donatien. Don, most call me."

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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Re: Lost Without a Place, Without a Home [Northern]
PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2015 9:43 pm GMT 
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Takumi looked at the hand, knowing what the gesture was, but he merely bowed instead, somewhat lower than he normally would bother with. "Kumi," he murmured. "It is good to meet you." He raised again, those dark green eyes fixed on the man. He was large - so foreign in his stature - but Takumi felt no fear from him. Indeed, he wasn't sure he would have cared if the man was violent in the end. He had trained in martial arts and while he was not as adept at them as he was with a katana, he could certainly defend himself.

"You may stay," he said, "But I may not be good company - I am missing home."

It wasn't entirely a lie - he was both homesick and terrified of home. He missed the niwa, the Tetsugaku-no-michi, and temples. The cherry blossoms. He looked down at the wine before taking another sip. He knew he should not think too deeply of home - Daisuke had warned him so. He inhaled deeply - cigarette smoke and foreign scents - before he looked back to the man. "You. . .do not seem Amerikan." He raised a delicate brow.

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Play it across the table
What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

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is a spider-child
 Post subject: Re: Lost Without a Place, Without a Home [Northern]
PostPosted: Sun Nov 01, 2015 11:14 am GMT 
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It wasn't exactly a surprise that the woman said that she was missing home, it was obvious that she was not from around here after all, but for some reason the words struck somewhere near Don's heart when he heard them. To say it felt good to hear was perhaps a bit lacking in sympathy, but the big man still felt like such a stranger to this land that to hear someone else have a similar experience was a strange relief, and he felt an even stronger urge to try and cheer her.

"I am not," he replied in that steady voice, that with its deepness almost sounded like a murmur without it being lost in the background noises of the bar. "I am missing home, too."

He picked up his own drink and took a sip from it, not really relishing the taste but taking the moment to do this none the less. He was glad that the young woman didn't seem scared, and that she hadn't immediately rejected his presence; perhaps it meant that she would also welcome his interfering with her drinking.

"I come from France. And you?"

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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Re: Lost Without a Place, Without a Home [Northern]
PostPosted: Mon Jan 18, 2016 11:40 pm GMT 
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"Nihon," he replied at that, without really thinking that it wasn't the name the Westerners called it by; he remembered a moment later and sighed, correcting himself. "Japan." It was a frustrating thing that even the name of his homeland was different here, where everything was so foreign and grated against his self. It felt as though this country wanted to take everything from him, every part of him that made him who he was or that gave him comfort.

He looked back at Don, taking him in again with the new information. France was a foreign to him as America was and he really knew nothing of the country, only having a vague idea of where it was situated within Europe. Still, he nodded for the man's benefit. He seemed nice enough, so far - he wondered if he'd remain so nice if he knew. . .

"Why. . .here?" he asked slowly, taking another sip of the wine and starting to vaguely feel the affects. "This place is far from Fransu, as it is from Japan. Why come?"

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Play it across the table
What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

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is a spider-child
 Post subject: Re: Lost Without a Place, Without a Home [Northern]
PostPosted: Sun Mar 27, 2016 4:29 am GMT 
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Japan. The woman might as well have said she was from a country in a fairytale, then Don might have had a bigger chance to try and relate to it; France was indeed far away but Japan was of a different world. He'd heard about it, seen the odd photograph or postcard from Asian countries —he had the grace to feel a bit ashamed that he now couldn't conjure the memory of one and say for sure that it had indeed been a picture of Japan— but just like Takumi knew little of France Don couldn't really boast to really know anything about Japan, or the East in general. It certainly explained the exotic and alluring appearance of his new company however.

"Japan..." he echoed, looking momentarily thoughtful and then smiling faintly, just a slight lift at the corner of his mouth. "You have come a longer way than I have."

In response to the question the big man shrugged his broad shoulders a little, looking down in to his drink and tilting the glass this way and that, letting it catch the dim lights of the bar. "I came here with friends," he explained. "Helping with business." The question of why she was here wasn't returned in kind, which was the usual faire in a conversation, you ask me and I ask you, but by now it would possibly become apparent that Don didn't really carry on a conversation as most people would. He was most of all content with hearing others speak, which ought not work well together with his lack of inquisitiveness and his own concise replies. Quite often however, silence prompted those around him in to talking, if only to curb the silence that might grown between them; to Don it wasn't awkward in the slightest but most others seemed to think so, and once they started talking some people didn't seem to need a lot of incentive and encouragement to keep doing so. This woman with her contrastingly vibrant attire and demure way of carrying herself might be the kind that needed some of that encouragement though, and she had made Don curious. When he looked over to Kumi again the warm, brown eyes that carried a surprisingly softness in them for a man built like a bull betrayed some of that curiosity.

"I do not know much about Japan." While it wasn't a question it did sound like one; Don didn't know anything about Japan, but he would definitely not mind hearing about it.

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Amicitia concero omnis
 Post subject: Re: Lost Without a Place, Without a Home [Northern]
PostPosted: Tue Oct 11, 2016 12:22 pm GMT 
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The question - or rather the answer it entailed - made something twist in Takumi and he he took a long drink of wine, something pained flashing deep in his eyes for the briefest of moments. "Japan is. . .different. There are parts of town - the hanamachi - where the buildings make a maze, endless rooftops." He sighed, unconsciously gripping the glass a bit tighter, knuckles whitening. "I miss Tetsugaku-no-michi - a path, it follows the river and there are so many sakura trees that it is like snow when they fall." Each word twisted his heart more, and he could feel his throat closing up. "There are merchants - carts along the road that sell treats and snacks—"

He broke off suddenly, squeezing his eyes closed and shaking his head, silent for a long moment. He let go of the glass, pushing it away with his finger tips. "I. . .should go," he mumbled, slipping off the stool and starting towards the door.

It had hurt, speaking of home like that, so far away from anything he knew. He kept his head down, intending to simply limp back to Daisuke and the small apartment they now shared, to crawl into the large, cold Western bed that felt so strange.

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Play it across the table
What if we steal this city blind?
If they want anything, let 'em nail it down.
— Carl Sandburg


Det tog 25 år att ens komma så här långt och jag ser en framtid där jag kunde bli något stort...

Characters, and Timelines! Char solos!


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