2019-03-27: I Want You to Hit Me as Hard as You Can

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  • Log: 2019-03-27: I Want You to Hit Me as Hard as You Can
  • Cast: Ivan, Kaguya
  • Where: Kilika - Jungles
  • Date: March 27, 2019
  • Summary: After learning that Kaguya hurt Talia badly in the past, Ivan challenges Kaguya to a duel of sorts.

=============================<* Kilika - Jungles *>=============================

The island of Kilika is filled with a massive jungle, which is no stranger to Fiends. The recent attack by Sin has made the jungle a dangerous place indeed; powerful Fiends patrol, and a few Sinspawn are rumored to be sighted. Much of Althena's Guard, having arrived, is devoted to making headway into the jungle and protecting the route to the Temple, which is nestled up in the mountains beyond the jungle.

BGM: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kHw2V0C-D-o

<Pose Tracker> Kaguya has posed.

Daytime in Kilika--hot, humid, by many standards 'balmy'--It's beautiful out here, really, just far enough in from town, just far enough down the roads that the wooden decks have fallen away some, and the town of Kilika is between this place and the open ocean. Very green--trees, grass, plants, stone from old ruins strewn about...

And, on one of those stones is seated one Kaguya, dressed still in the finery appropriate to her position and... frankly, sweating as a result. It's terrible. Her short hair, the cut of her tunic--they all verge strictly towards 'boyish'. The thick weapon at her belt--actually a pair of butterfly swords, if one's paying attention and up on Kaguya's preferred weapons--are the only allowance she makes just now for the Fiends that lurk here in the jungles even now. There are probably some that sense her and wish to make trouble. She does not seem to care much about that, at the moment. Instead, she has a small glass(?) object in her hands, something that very few would recognize as a screen she's looking at.

She does not have an escort.

<Pose Tracker> Ivan has posed.

Ivan has no intention of attempting to assassinate Kaguya this afternoon by catching her alone and unawares, but the way that he set out quietly on her tail when she made her way out of town and into the jungle was certainly out of that playbook. But once he's ready to confront her, he strides up openly, taking a moment before he speaks to size her up. She does not look intimidating, but he's been told the same about himself. If she was able to hurt Talia so badly, it is best to assume she can make extremely good use of those blades.

When he has made his assessment, he announces without preamble: "Hey. I want to fight you but I can't get kicked out of the Guard."

He doesn't clarify what he means for her to do with that information.

<Pose Tracker> Kaguya has posed.

There are many who have known kaguya who assume certain supernatural qualities about her. ...This is accurate; supernatural, superhuman. However... It's not true of everything. A trained assassin can still get the drop on her, if he chooses. So, he does get the benefit of some surprise--

It's true that she doesn't look at all intimidating; strange, perhaps, with her sharp teeth and pointed ears, but she's small, and looks young.

And, for the moment, turning Ivan's way and looking at him sort of blankly, or maybe gamely. He announces it. He looks at her; she looks at him. ...There's silence, for a moment.

"Huh," Kaguya says. "Gotta admit, it's kinda refreshing to see that kind of honesty."

She sounds surprised... but not confused.

She tips her head over to the rock across from her, a broken pillar that is an easier seat for someone taller than it would be for her. "Okay, so, that's fair. What kind of fight are we talking here? Do you want to try to take me out, or just take me on, or what?"

<Pose Tracker> Ivan has posed.

Ivan looks over at the pillar, but doesn't find this to be a "sit down and chat" kind of a conversation, so he stays where he is. He wants to be angry, but her chillness is taking the wind out of his sails. He doesn't need to help that along by getting all civil about it.

"...On, I think." he says. The "on" versus "out" question kind of depends on clues he hoped to gain from her reaction, but didn't. Was Talia's cover blown when they fought? Would Kaguya have similar suspicions about him, that he needs to silence? Or this just such a minor and a random event to her that she doesn't feel the need for an explanation?

"But I thought you would have questions. Or... if you know why I'm here, then you would have different questions. Do people show up and challenge you all the time?"

<Pose Tracker> Kaguya has posed.

Kaguya shrugs, when Ivan stays where he is, and scoots herself into a turn so that she can more easily face him without craning her neck. It might be a little grudging, it might not--she's sort of melting in the heat regardless. Regardless, in a few moments...

She grins, at his question. "I mean, not all the time, but I'm not surprised that someone would have an issue with me, if that makes sense. I've stepped on a lot of people along the way. Sometimes they live, or sometimes, somebody related does."

She waits a beat, "And I mean, I don't mind a good fight now and then, either. That's why i asked the first question. I mean, honestly, if you just wanted to fight me to see how strong you are or whatever I might go for it. Gotta stay in practice, right?"

"Buuut, I don't get the idea that that's why. So, since the first question's taken care of... I do have some others. Why do you want to fight me? You don't have to tell me... But if I like your reason, you might get your wish."

<Pose Tracker> Ivan has posed.

"Do you remember my sister?" Ivan asks.

Maybe he should not admit to being her brother so readily if there's a chance she was caught in a betrayal, but if his face is able to do that for him, then it's better to know while he's in a position to do something about it. It sounds like even if Kaguya was the one betrayed, she's just as often the betrayer, so he doesn't have to feel too badly if he's trying to avenge Talia for a fight she started.

Besides, whatever she might have done was probably Lubov's directive, anyway. (He doesn't have a very good idea of what actually happened, for someone who wants to fight over it).

<Pose Tracker> Kaguya has posed.

"There it is," Kaguya answers, and it is just as strangely, perhaps off-puttingly casual as she's been through this entire conversation. Easygoing; relaxed, unconcerned. Her bangs flutter in a bit of a breeze, in the moment, and it aaalmost looks like she could read minds, given her thoughtful look.

She can't, naturally. She's just good at looking thoughtful.

"Yes. Talia, right? You look like her. I noticed... But of course, I couldn't be sure without asking, and if I asked, you'd wonder how I knew her, and the whole thing would be trouble. But since you ask, I bet you know we've got a history."

"Was it the battle at Tryfan Vale? Or the later one, that wasn't so public? ...Eh, either way."

"I'd assume the first one, anyway. Have you run into her, or something? I'm sure she didn't send you. She didn't seem like the type to try to get her brother killed."

<Pose Tracker> Ivan has posed.

"It was twice??" He frowns. "No--she sent me a message about some of the things that happened to her. I haven't seen her in a long time."

He mostly intends to go on talking as if Talia's dead for her safety, but he didn't understand Talia's whirlwhind story about world-swapping and near-death experiences well enough not to mess up the chronology if he tried that now with someone who was there for part of it. He still doesn't want to mention she's so close to Kilika when Talia seemed frightened by the prospect of Kaguya being in the same town.

Besides, it's kind of a nasty lie in this context to imply that Kaguya had a hand in her fictional death. Even if Kaguya seems like she could not give less of a shit about this.

That much is enough to boil his blood on its own.

"It's my own thing. You hurt her, so I want to hurt you back. And I'm a competitive shit and I want to beat someone she couldn't."

<Pose Tracker> Kaguya has posed.

"Well, I didn't tangle with her directly at Tryfan Vale, but we were on opposite sides. But you know, I dunno your standards. Both might count." She considers, though. Sending him a message... She doesn't answer that immediately. Instead, she listens to his further explanation, and nods along, as if chewing something over--until--

She gets a very wry expression on her face all of a sudden, though. "You know," the blonde answers, "That's exactly why I went after her, at Azado. ...Oh, yeah--most people don't know I was there. I didn't really announce my presence. I definitely didn't stay, considering. I had to teach her a lesson, about hurting what's mine."

"But you've got something--what's the word...? Eh, whatever--that's a good reason. I like it better than her sending you, anyway. So..."

Kaguya nods, then. "All right. You got it. I'll make the arrangements, so you can have your fight without running into any more trouble than the obvious. You can see if you can beat me, where she couldn't... And I can see the same thing."

She grins, but this isn't casual--this one shows off her sharp canines, fanglike, and is not a 'nice' kind of expression at all.

"Buuuuut... I'm gonna need something, too." Pause. "...I'm gonna need you to tell me how you got a message from that planet," she says, pointing straight at the Blue Star, "'Cause she was alive when I left her and I know damn well what that Elw machine down there did. I happen to be looking for someone who was there, myself."

"Sound fair? I won't give you any patronizing bullshit about it. We might need to observe some kind of... whatever ceremony, so the White Knight doesn't get grouchy about it, or we can meet up in secret and pretend we ran into monsters, whatever. But you get your shot at revenge, and I get my clue. That's the deal."

<Pose Tracker> Ivan has posed.

She accepted his challenge! Ivan hadn't expected that. He thought he would have to compromise by winning something off of her in a game, or maybe stealing something he thought she would miss. This is better.

Though it comes with a number of mysterious insinuations about the incidents he missed that answer few of his questions and raise several more.

"Deal. But who are you looking for? And who did Talia hurt? Are they the same person?"

She has been so weirdly accomodating about his wish to try to stab her that he feels almost like he owes her a better favor than a more plausible lie about his contact with Talia. Looking around for a missing person directly would feel less risky than giving the truth.

<Pose Tracker> Kaguya has posed.

Kaguya sure did. She shows no signs that it's a trick, either, that she means anything other than what she says about it. ...That might be better for her, too, though. She has superhuman strength, not superhuman poker abilities...

And making a lot of insinuations is part of the fun.

"Good," Kaguya answers, and then 'hmms' as she debates answering--and then, decides--

"Same person. Name of Dr. Matilda Whitehead--my tactician... and also, my girlfriend. She's a talented compounder, among other things. She was also in Azado, back then."

By this point, the thing Kaguya was messing with is back among her things. "She's smart--I'm sure she'll find a way to return to this moon eventually... but until then, if you've got a way to contact people on the Blue Star, then I want it so I can drop her a line, get an update."

"If you hear anything from her, I'm willing to make passing it on worth your while, our deal aside. As to that..."

"You can choose weapons, if you want. Our normal for each of us, or something of your choosing. Think about it. I need to make sure the White Knight doesn't have plans for us to move imminently that would get in our way, but I can give you a time and a place once I have."

<Pose Tracker> Ivan has posed.

"I don't think the method is transferrable," Ivan says. "Magical twin thing."

Didn't he mean to do a more plausible lie? But she put him on the spot!
"...But I'll see if I can learn anything to help find your girlfriend, instead. Do you know anything about why a bunch of people in Azado would be sent to the Blue Star out of nowhere?"

He didn't think to ask Talia if anything in particular sent her back, but the idea that it might have been temporary isn't out of the realm of possibility. Maybe everyone who bounced away has just recently bounced back.

<Pose Tracker> Kaguya has posed.

"Hmm." Kaguya frowns, faintly. "Well, that sucks. Maybe..."

...She might actually buy it. Twins can be mysterious. There's a lot of weird amgic out there. She can't account for all of it, maybe there is something like that. Shit.

"All right, that's just as good," she answers, and then grins--this is a little more pleasant, a little less... violent, than the one from moments ago. "Actually," she says, "I do. But you're gonna keep to keep it a little quiet, or we might have some issues."

"So, it was some ancient technology that did it. I've seen it before; I saw something like it move people between the two worlds already. So, when I saw it there, it was easy to piece together what was happening. It was pretty much the only thing that saved most of them, I bet, considering Sin. So, I know there's more than one..."

"But they're not easy to find, or to make work. And even if there is one, there's no telling where on Lunar they'd show up."

"Most people wouldn't get it, or would ask too many questions about that kind of thing, but that's what happened a while back, while the war was still heating up. Cool, huh?"

<Pose Tracker> Ivan has posed.

Ivan's brows knit at the story. He has quite a few more questions, now. What did it look like? Was someone operating it? To make an escape route? Or did it activate by mysterious means and spirit them off of its own accord? Where was the other one she saw, and which world was it on?

"...Cool," he affirms, warily.

But at least she may be willing to answer his questions, if he's going to help in her search. He faintly worries that this is not how making an enemy is supposed to work...