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Exorcising the City

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Exorcising the City

Post  Thiago Lopes on Sun May 20, 2012 3:14 am

Thiago woke on his side in a strange place. He could sense the sounds and feel of waves, so he was definitely on a ship. Said ship was just as definitely not an Assassin ship. He was almost completely naked. He tried to get to his feet, but this was made difficult by the ropes which bound his hands behind his back. He looked around for some kind of indication as to who brought him here. Someone else was in the cabin, outside of the iron cage. He looked to be a guard. Thiago hadn't done much other than sit up before the man stood and left.

His memories were a blur. He remembered assisting Masumi with an errand. He remembered a scream. He remembered nothing else.

Now, he was a prisoner on a ship. Perfeito. He knew better than to waste his energy struggling until he had a plan.

*tap tap tap*

The guard had returned with an official-looking man, probably their captain. "Ropeshu Chiyago [Thiago Lopes], welcome to our ship. To what do I owe the honor?"

"There is no honor in this, você bastardo Templario."

"Don't talk to me about honor, you who preach that everything is permitted. I lost my brother to your ilk. He wasn't in a fight. He wasn't doing any wrong. He was guarding his post when you killed him."

"I am sorry for your loss."

"Apologies do not raise the dead. But still, I am also sorry."

"Why?"

The captain gripped the bars and lowered his head.

"What are you going to do?"

The captain shook his head.

"Answer me!"

"We will invade your city."

"WHAT?!"

"Do not worry. The people will be unharmed. Lord Oda plans to use persuasion instead."

"Strange, Oda's persuasiveness is not usually so limited."

"Don't fret about that. We still plan to wipe out the Assassins, but we will give the people a reason to beg Oda to save them."

"How do you plan to do that?"

"I have told you everything I know about that. We are taking you to Nagoya for your public execution," the captain said with a tearful smile. With that, he left Thiago alone in his cell with the guard and... Masumi?


Last edited by Thiago Lopes on Sun May 20, 2012 12:58 pm; edited 2 times in total

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In the latter half of the 19th Century, Japan grew from a feudal society into one of the few great powers to determine the fate of the world. Abstergo recruit Gabriel Marshall visits this time to relive the memories of the Assassin Washio Tsume.
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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  The Templars on Sun May 20, 2012 3:33 am

Their Master was kidnapped and their Mentor was away. Two of their better fighters were away on a journey. One master and a few dozen novices were not going to be a challenge. They had heard word that many of these novices were foreign. One claimed to be from a land further east than Japan, but everyone knew that nothing but water was in that direction.One was a hybrid of those accursed white people and a normal person. One had once worked for Oda. He should be easy enough to get back. One was from a place called Ejito [Egypt] across the continent. We had even heard rumors that they were hiring homeless. What an idiotic concept! Of course, they also held one of our own prisoner.

We left them a message telling them to come to the ruins of the old temple in the bamboo forest with our missing shinobi under a full moon. There, they believe we will exchange their Mentor and the old man for the ninja. They don't know it 's a trap.

We donned our Oni masks. A hundred strong, the Templar bandits' plan was ready.
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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  Masumi on Sun May 20, 2012 6:20 pm

Wha-?” the housekeeper mumbled, as she awoke to a splitting headache and a churning in her gut. She blinked a few times, trying to orient herself and understand why the world kept rocking. The air smelled distinctly salty. Two voices, male, bitterly exchanged words before footsteps silenced the conversation. Trying to sit up, her arms seemed remarkably uncooperative, and Masumi only succeeded in rolling over.
Her eyes strained in the dark, trying to focus on her surroundings. “Tono? What happened to your clothes? Why can’t I move?” Of course, what really puzzled the young woman was why she couldn’t think clearly. “Did someone poison me, Tono?” Even through her haze, Masumi could brainstorm several suspect concoctions, but was unable to narrow it down without knowing the amount or method of delivery.

As her head gradually cleared, Masumi tried to piece together what happened, “I was really worried about you. There were so many oni, I tried throwing beans at them, but it didn't do anything. I didn’t realized it was a trick until-“ try as she might, Masumi couldn’t draw anything beyond that but a blank.


Last edited by Masumi on Mon May 21, 2012 12:23 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : Grammar, question answered)
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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  Thiago Lopes on Mon May 21, 2012 5:00 pm

Masumi wrote:Wha-?” the housekeeper mumbled, as she awoke to a splitting headache and a churning in her gut. She blinked a few times, trying to orient herself and understand why the world kept rocking. The air smelled distinctly salty. Two voices, male, bitterly exchanged words before footsteps silenced the conversation. Trying to sit up, her arms seemed remarkably uncooperative, and Masumi only succeeded in rolling over.
Her eyes strained in the dark, trying to focus on her surroundings. “Tono? What happened to your clothes? Why can’t I move?” Of course, what really puzzled the young woman was why she couldn’t think clearly. “Did someone poison me, Tono?” Even through her haze, Masumi could brainstorm several suspect concoctions, but was unable to narrow it down without knowing the amount or method of delivery.

As her head gradually cleared, Masumi tried to piece together what happened, “I was really worried about you. There were so many oni, I tried throwing beans at them, but it didn't do anything. I didn’t realized it was a trick until-“ try as she might, Masumi couldn’t draw anything beyond that but a blank.

Thiago slid down the wall into a sitting position, "I am so sorry, Masumi. If I could go back and leave you out of this organization, you know I would. The streets must be looking wonderfully inviting right now. Certainly, they would be better than life threatening danger striking you every other week."

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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  Masumi on Mon May 21, 2012 5:32 pm

Thiago Lopes wrote:Thiago slid down the wall into a sitting position, "I am so sorry, Masumi. If I could go back and leave you out of this organization, you know I would. The streets must be looking wonderfully inviting right now. Certainly, they would be better than life threatening danger striking you every other week."

The imprisoned woman pondered this for a minute. Life on the streets had been unpredictable and hazardous. Life in the Assassin's den had been hard work, with her concept of society and social protocol being repeatedly called into question. "But then I wouldn't have gotten the chance to try one of those delicious apples," she stated, humor hinted in her voice. While amongst the Assassins some irked her, some bewildered her, and some down right struck fear into her, Masumi had still gradually grown fond of the various members of the Assassin's guild.

"Maybe I'm just finally getting what I deserve. With death's shadow is upon us, I have nothing to hide. Care for a story, tono?"
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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  Thiago Lopes on Tue May 22, 2012 5:23 am

"Certainly. It will help to pass the time while I plan our desenrascanço*."

*Desenrascanço doesn't have a very good equivalent in any language, but the closest is English with "disentanglement." It's an old Portuguese sailor philosophy that no situation is hopeless; the solution just has not been found yet.

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In the latter half of the 19th Century, Japan grew from a feudal society into one of the few great powers to determine the fate of the world. Abstergo recruit Gabriel Marshall visits this time to relive the memories of the Assassin Washio Tsume.
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Tales of Kyoko

Post  Masumi on Tue May 22, 2012 6:28 am

She raised an eyebrow at his foreign word, wondering just what it was he was planning, but all the same began, “The truth is I never deserved any of your kindness. I was born to a merchant family in Kyoto, but that place is no longer home. Back then I called myself Yamamoto Kyoko.” Masumi was self-conscious of her inability to read, wield a weapon, or even cook beyond simple folk recipes, but she secretly took pride in her story-telling capabilities. She retold everything from being sold to the brothel to her initial months trying to live as a run-away.

Her narrative finished, Masumi commented, “Tanaka-san told me to commit suicide*. She said it would be more honorable than abandoning my obligations and living off society like some parasite. Maybe I should have listened, but I suppose I was too much of a coward. Perhaps it is fate that I should answer to my sins in this matter.

*Suicide was not considered morally wrong in feudal Japan the way it was in feudal Europe. In fact, it was seen as a socially acceptable way to protest or to escape intolerable situations.
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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  Thiago Lopes on Tue May 22, 2012 1:07 pm

Masumi wrote:She raised an eyebrow at his foreign word, wondering just what it was he was planning, but all the same began, “The truth is I never deserved any of your kindness. I was born to a merchant family in Kyoto, but that place is no longer home. Back then I called myself Yamamoto Kyoko.” Masumi was self-conscious of her inability to read, wield a weapon, or even cook beyond simple folk recipes, but she secretly took pride in her story-telling capabilities. She retold everything from being sold to the brothel to her initial months trying to live as a run-away.

Her narrative finished, Masumi commented, “Tanaka-san told me to commit suicide. She said it would be more honorable than abandoning my obligations and living off society like some parasite. Maybe I should have listened, but I suppose I was too much of a coward. Perhaps it is fate that I should answer to my sins in this matter.

"That is no way to talk about yourself. Yes, our pasts affect who we are, but we choose how. Your past does not begin in a bordel {brothel} or with your family. It begins the day you made your own decision. Suicide is for the weak and selfish. Your death means nothing. Your life does. Dead men are as useful to changing the world as well-behaved men."

"I do not remember when I was a child, because I have been an Assassin longer than I remember. It was in Egito {Egypt} when I decided that this was my path. It was not because I wanted to follow my parents, but because I feel that it is truly right.

"Não obstante {Nevertheless}, we need a solution soon. It is only a single night from Nagasaki to Owari. I only hope that the others can handle them."

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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  Masumi on Tue May 22, 2012 4:18 pm

Thiago Lopes wrote:"That is no way to talk about yourself. Yes, our pasts affect who we are, but we choose how. Your past does not begin in a bordel {brothel} or with your family. It begins the day you made your own decision. Suicide is for the weak and selfish. Your death means nothing. Your life does. Dead men are as useful to changing the world as well-behaved men."

"I do not remember when I was a child, because I have been an Assassin longer than I remember. It was in Egito {Egypt} when I decided that this was my path. It was not because I wanted to follow my parents, but because I feel that it is truly right.

"Não obstante {Nevertheless}, we need a solution soon. It is only a single night from Nagasaki to Owari. I only hope that the others can handle them."

With her concept of reality yet again facing a major obstacle, Masumi initially balked at her superior's declaration. He claimed it was her life that held meaning, a direct contradiction to the reaction she expected from anyone who learned of her origins. If anything, the elder seemed vehemently against her claiming otherwise. Furthermore, what about choosing your fate? Warriors were born in the warrior class, as were commoners, royalty, or any other. The only way to change this was by descending into the hinin class... which was a choice. Well, maybe it was at least partially true? Hadn't she been the one who chose to take Lopes's hand ("The Beggar's Corner") in the first place?

It seemed the Master Assassin was trying to look for a way out, and it was beyond the housekeeper how he could fathom escape. They were tied up, stripped of their possessions, locked in a sturdy metal cage, and a guard was standing outside. If they worked together, it was possible to untie one another's knots, but not with a guard to intervene. Masumi's arms were slender enough to slip outside of their prison, but what good would that do? But she also knew her employer saw the world in choices, not in fate. "Yes sir," she answered, as she tried comprehend a world with those possibilities.

In the back of her mind, the young woman wondered what the residents of the den were choosing to do now.
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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  Rogelio Martinho on Wed May 23, 2012 3:34 pm

"Ummm, Martinho-san..."
"I am TRYING to enjoy some *Bacalhau! What is it?" the man asked grumpily.
"We just got a message from the Templars..."
"Hand it over!"

A few minutes later every assassin was gathering in the sanctuary. Rogelio was looking over the note with a grave look on his face. Once everyone was assembled, he cleared his throat.

"Brothers, sisters, I have grave news," he began. "We just received a ransom note from the Templars. They have kidnapped Thiago Lopes and the mentor. They want a prisoner swap at a temple not too far from the city. Obviously these are the two most influential men in our organization, without whom we would be lost."

He let that sink in for a moment, before unloading his bombshell. "But we won't go!" He looked around at the shocked expressions of everyone present. "Not on their terms! We are Assassins, we do NOT accept our enemies dictating our strategy! Remember, the only fair fight is the one you lose! Now, with that said, we must formulate a plan. We're going to rescue the old man and the mentor. And to do that we'll need to sneak into that temple. Anyone with ideas can step forward now."

* Traditional Portuguese fried dish, the precursor to tempura.

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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  The Templars on Fri May 25, 2012 5:17 am

Eyes on the moon. They knew not to expect a prideful lot like the Assassins to actually comply with their requests. Likely, they had already killed the prisoner long ago. Still, the plan did not need to be executed perfectly. A rough plan is often better than a smooth one, because it gives room to work.

"What if they don't bring him?" one Oni asked of their leader.

"Their numbers were badly cut just a month ago. We can hunt them down in the streets just like we did the old man. They've resorted to importing others from around the islands and the mainland. Even if they are familiar with Nippon, I doubt the other guilds would give over their best students for a struggling guild. Once we have eliminated them, then we will terrorize the populace. Oda's samurai will show up, and the Oni will pretend to run away. We will then join the ranks of the samurai who enforce the city."
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The Ruse

Post  Masumi on Fri May 25, 2012 1:10 pm

Masumi thought of an idea, but it would involve swallowing her nonexistent pride, and acting skills that were sorely inadequate. Still, the unusual situation left Masumi feeling uncharacteristically bold, and so she chose to act. Yet another choice. It had been many years since she had flirted with a man, but Masumi still managed, "Tono, since the day I’ve met you, I’ve always wanted you.” She was painfully aware her facial expression showed her embarrassment, her insincerity, but thankfully, it wasn’t Lopes that she was trying to fool. "If this is our last day alive…” she trailed off, springing on the older man as if half crazed, twisting her head around his body to begin gnawing on his ropes. Ugh, I feel like a rabbit, or a rat. What I wouldn’t give for my knife, or even just my hands. Wait, did I just make that knot tighter? She hoped the Master Assassin would either cover for her bad acting skills, or at least tolerate her long enough for her to make progress before the guard caught wind of her ruse.
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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  Thiago Lopes on Sat May 26, 2012 6:31 pm

Thiago was laid onto his front by his housekeeper. At first he questioned her words. She had never given any indication of interest in him before, but now that he felt her lips and teeth gnawing at the ropes which bound his hands behind his back, he did not care. He realized that her intentions lied in their desenrascanço.

"Oh Masumi," he tried to play along, "How did you know that this is exactly what I wanted?"
He hoped that she understood what he was getting at.

Still, even if she managed to chew through the ropes, he would need some kind of trickery to break out of this cell.

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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  Masumi on Sun May 27, 2012 1:22 am

As she continued to chew on the rope, she discovered not enough progress was made quick enough, her ruse would only work so long. She tried targeting the knots.

Thiago Lopes wrote:"Oh Masumi," he tried to play along, "How did you know that this is exactly what I wanted?" He hoped that she understood what he was getting at.

Thank you Tono, say anything they want to hear in order to leave us in peace until I'm finished. The previous beggar knew a few basic knots from her travels. This knot was new, but the underlying ideas were the same. By trial and error, she untangled the rope from itself.

She almost gasped when she the rope slipped away from itself. Wait, is this success? She started unwinding the rope off the wrists until the binding went slack. Rolling away, Masumi pondered how they were going to get past a metal cage, guard, and off a ship with one freed Master Assassin, one still tied-up house keeper, and a bit of rope. Was there a way to pick lock with rope? Did someone carry the keys?


Last edited by Masumi on Sun May 27, 2012 5:28 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Fixing typos)
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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  Au'lani on Wed May 30, 2012 4:01 pm

Au'lani had tiredly woken up that morning, she tended to be sleeping in and neglecting her training. With no father to continue to keep her on time with her exercises, she held no motivation to do things on a timely matter. If worst came to worst, Au'lani would skip her weapon exercises and simply go for a run, and then go through training of leaping from rooftops, balancing on beams, keeping her agility up.

Stealth and agility were an assassin's greatest ally.

She had just been ready to go for her run, not wearing her usual garb, but rather just her leggings and undershirt to keep the hot air of the city off of her; when someone had stopped her.

"Au'lani, come on, we're asked to go to the Sanctuary," he explained.

Nodding, Au'lani obediently followed along, "Do you know what's wrong?"

"No, we've just been all told to come here.." he trailed off as they entered the Sanctuary and huddled in together to hear what Regelio Martinho had to say to them.

Rogelio Martinho wrote:
A few minutes later every assassin was gathering in the sanctuary. Rogelio was looking over the note with a grave look on his face. Once everyone was assembled, he cleared his throat.

"Brothers, sisters, I have grave news," he began. "We just received a ransom note from the Templars. They have kidnapped Thiago Lopes and the mentor. They want a prisoner swap at a temple not too far from the city. Obviously these are the two most influential men in our organization, without whom we would be lost."

He let that sink in for a moment, before unloading his bombshell. "But we won't go!" He looked around at the shocked expressions of everyone present. "Not on their terms! We are Assassins, we do NOT accept our enemies dictating our strategy! Remember, the only fair fight is the one you lose! Now, with that said, we must formulate a plan. We're going to rescue the old man and the mentor. And to do that we'll need to sneak into that temple. Anyone with ideas can step forward now."

Hesitantly, Au'lani stepped forward.

"Well, we know the Templars are trained as hard and lethal as we are," Au'lani spoke up, "So if we want to strike, we want their guard to be down. Maybe..." she trailed off, actually not too sure where to go with this, "maybe if we dress two random prisoners up as the ones they wish to have, and then burn their ships, they'll have nothing else to do...but surrender...?" She shrugged slightly, "Without a ship, they hold no transportation. Without transportation, they can't get off the island."
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Re: Exorcising the City

Post  The Templars on Wed Jun 06, 2012 1:32 pm

"Kuro, you're coming with us."

The shinobi stood. He hadn't left the cell for what must have been months. Maybe he was going to see his family again? Too generous. Maybe they were going to start torturing him again? No, he enjoyed his gifts too much to lie. "Care if I ask you a question for a change?"

"The Templars are bargaining for you back."

"That answers my question."

They had cuffed him and guided him out to the main hall of the den. There he saw a wide variety of Assassins, probably from all places and cultures. Still, if they were desperate enough to give up their best source of good intelligence, they were either extremely stupid or extremely weak. He honestly could not find a way for this not to end in his favor.
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