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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 9:57 pm 
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She nodded, "Fortunately they picked the right woman to pay homage to. Sadahako-sama was a lovely woman. It shouldn't be too difficult to get the right people in the Tortoise to move the resources around to see that a shrine for her is created and maintained."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:09 pm 
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"I am pleased to hear it. Though I must admit some regret in never having had the chance to see or meet her myself."

Another sip of the warm tea. "How do you feel about it all, considering this project was placed in your lap very suddenly?"



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:14 pm 
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"She was the nurse-mother of one of my closest friends. It allows for some repairing of goodwill between the Tortoise and the rest of the Empire. And it gave me the opportunity to save dozens of people that may have been killed without protection back on the mainland. It's unexpected... but not entirely unwanted." She replied with a list of reasons why she would want to see it succeed.

"And I don't do things half-hearted." She said with a cool certainty.



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:31 pm 
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Utsu nodded, understanding the sentiment fully.

"How fortunate to have met a woman like her," she smiled faintly, thinking of what she meant about the 'refugees' on the ship. "... I admit, I do not know much about your clan's and these people's circumstances. News do not travel fast to the lands of my family, and much of it seems to be lost along the way. If it does not trouble you, I would like to understand it better."

If Berena wished to elaborate, it would be her choice.



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:42 pm 
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She chuckled, "It's probably best if I don't speak too much about my opinions of mainland politics. I'll come off in a light I don't wish to portray. You're a nice woman and all... but nice women are usually the ones to be particularly careful with when you speak. Because they are sure to have friends who want to hear 'interesting' tid-bits."

She stretched out her neck a bit, "Besides... I tend to be a bit more direct with my criticisms; if I have an issue I bring it up with that person. Makes no sense to spread complaints downward in the chain of command. Only ones who can do anything are higher up."

She then put both hands on the helm and stretched out her shoulders, "So... all that needs to be known is that these people are fortunate to be here, and have skills that will help in the construction of any edifice to a woman who truly deserves much more respect than she was given in life."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 10:47 pm 
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Utsu couldn't help but to chuckle mirthfully. Life back home would have been more entertaining with more people like Berena in the courts. "Sounds like you've learned all you need to know about mainland politics if you are distrustful of nice people. I would reassure you that you will find me a more reasonable person than many others on this journey, but only you can make the decision on how much you are willing to trust me."

"But you have my word I will do all I can to bring honor to Sadahako-sama. Perhaps I am a little silly, but I it is the right thing to do, not for political play, but because she deserves our respect and admiration."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:00 pm 
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"Fortunately, you don't have to make a decision this time between the 'right thing' and the 'proper political play'." Bellena said with a nod.

"Any help you can provide will be greatly appreciated. I'm the type of person who thinks credit should go where it is due. So if you are to help, then we'll make sure people hear about it. And hopefully you won't stab us in the back at the first opportunity. I hope it's a relationship where you wouldn't want to. But I can never tell these days with people from the mainland; probably too many interactions with Mantis and Imperials are fresh on my mind."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:19 pm 
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Her lips pursed slightly. "Honestly, sometimes I don't understand why the Mantis are even still considered a clan. Even the Gusai name is nothing but the legacy of a rather brutish, uncouth man who thought only of his own glory." It was probably the most vitrolic thing most had heard her say.

She shook her head slightly. She had called in favours for labourers, craftsmen, and priests to accompany this journey, so these actions would have to speak for her so far. There would be more work to be done once they reached their destination.

"Any Imperials in particular that have been especially vexing to you? I agree that interacting with them can often be quite tedious..."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:25 pm 
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She chuckled in a sardonic manner, "Our interactions with them have been anything but tedious over the past year... but there's no one specifically I'm comfortable voicing my opinions on at this moment. Our captain certainly isn't the type to tolerate ill-speech of the Imperials. On this boat, his word is law."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:30 pm 
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An understanding nod. The captain's word is law, and she had allowed herself to get a little carried away... not that she could blame Berena for being easy to speak with, as she seemed to have a more open disposition than most.

"You're right. It is best we steer away from the gossip," she chuckled, "I apologise, as a courtier it is a natural habit to slip into. Perhaps you can tell me more of the place we are going to?"



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:38 pm 
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She chuckled, "You have a real ability for asking for sensitive information without appearing to be doing so in guile."

She looked over to Utsusemi with a soft expression, "You'll forgive me if I sound dismissive... our destination has been a tightly held secret by the Tortoise for quite some time. In order to ensure that the Mantis don't reach out into this part of the ocean we've had to be very careful with what we have revealed to anyone who could have a connection to the mainland. So it's a bit jarring to suddenly be asked what the place is like... I have a built in reaction to clam up."

She let a breath out before continuing, "It's a island located near the middle of the ocean... A jumping off point to a number of destinations across the globe. Accordingly there are a great number of peoples and cultures all mixed together on a single island. It's divided into different administrative regions to help reduce some of the difficulties between different cultures... I work as the chief advisor for one of the three... I guess you would call him 'governors' of the island."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:45 pm 
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"Oh," she flustered for a moment over the slight misunderstanding, recovering swiftly. "I did not mean... well, I was more curious to the flora and fauna, and such, honestly. As an artisan I do alot of work with what nature provides, either for ikebana, creating incense, or just for inspiration for poetry or paintings. So it was less knowing the destination and more knowing what will be there; in preparation of the work to be done."

"It does sound like a fairly large place, if so many different groups live together that the administration must be divided. That, or very populated." There was a small sense of wonder to her voice as she seemed to be imagining what it must look like. "But smaller than this desert city you told me of, yes?"



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:51 pm 
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She nodded, "Much smaller. Kameyama's populace is centered on the ports at different points of the island."

She then thought for a moment, "I'm not much of an artist myself... I am familiar with the concept of ikebana, but I'm not sure how helpful I can be other than saying that the flowers will most likely be very different from what you are familiar with. There are certainly beautiful landscapes though. Much of Kameyama is picture-esque. It has an equitable climate for most of the year... One of the most beautiful places I've seen actually."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 12:03 am 
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"I promise you I adapt easily, Muhaki-san," she giggled breathily. "The flora of my husband's lands is quite different from the verdant lands of the Doji where I grew up. In the palaces of the Doji and Kakita, you can hardly turn your head in their gardens without seeing a carefully maintained beauty. The lands of the Agasha, on the other hand, are much harsher with a colder climate... but I've found its almost untamed nature is more beautiful than perfected gardens."

"But, I am rambling," Utsu waved her hand slightly. She did seem to get carried away when it came to the subject of art and beauty. "If you say it is the most beautiful place you have seen... well, I am greatly looking forward to seeing it. Even more so since you seem very fond of it when you speak of the place."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 12:07 am 
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She smiled a bit but tilted her head, "It has plenty of 'untamed' nature too, if that is something you enjoy. It's good as places go. But a place is usually only as good as the people that are there. After you travel around the world as much as I have the destinations stop mattering so much... you learn to focus on the people you go with more."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 12:13 am 
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"Hm," she nodded thoughtfully. "Yes, I can see how that changes if you travel more. Though, having never left the shores of the Empire like this before, I do feel a sense of excitement for seeing sights I have not seen before... and I am lucky to have family and good friends on the journey as well."

She figured both Sanjuro and Kenzo would be interested in taking trips to see more of the lands of their destination, rather than just staying in the city.

"And I hope you will at least appriciate journey with us here, even if we have not known eachother for long."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 12:15 am 
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She simply nodded and smiled slightly, her eyes looking out at the dark sea's waves.



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 2:57 am 
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The quietness of the moment lasted for a little while, as tea was had and Utsu too seemed to just be appriciating the night.

"... This might probably be a silly question, so you don't have to answer, but I was wondering if it was usual for Merenaese women to travel the world and sea like you have?"



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 3:00 am 
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She tilted her head to think for a moment before shaking it gently, "There aren't a lot. Mostly men to be honest... The women tend to find a place to plant some roots and raise a family even if they are out on the sea much."



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 Post subject: Re: Starry, Starry Night (Rooster 21, Night)
PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 3:06 am 
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"I suppose some things are universal in a way then," she smirked slightly. "Men get to travel around, women need to stay home. Then again, it is one of the few things that can't be helped." A small sigh.

"And the clothing you wear... is typical of Merenaese women?"

It was, after all, quite different from traditional Rokugani wear.



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