Never Going Out of Style
Jigano Silversmith
Provost / Lorekeeper ☆ Loreseeker's Guild
Age: 28 | Height: 6'2" | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 7 - Strg: 14 - Dext: 30 - Endr: 30 - Luck: 25
ISUMA - Mythical - Gryphon (venomous)
Played by: Cirago Offline
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Posts: 1,537
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#15
He hadn't planned his little speech, hadn't even put it into words before Jiao had stung him into introspective inspiration for why the barrierfolk did what they had - and continued to do, despite Delah's wrath. It had come from the heart, unpracticed and unpolished, and perhaps because of that it finally seemed to get through to the petite seamstress. His somber mien lightened a little, lips quirking slightly at the information that Jiao wasn't a friend of Delah. He bit back the rather tactless comment that Delah didn't seem the type to have many friends at all, knowing that it was both petty and unfair to the chieftess who strove to protect her people - and not without reason, given what the gods had locked away in the barrier with the innocent descendants of those original humans, whatever their race and sins had been.

He stayed seated as he watched Jiao walk towards him, smile fading back to solemnity even as Isuma looked up with open curiosity and delight. He wasn't sure what she would say or do, so he remained still and patient, letting her take her time and set the tone of their continued conversation. Her words were almost a surprise, but her smile brought out the beauty of her delicate features and brought a tentative smile to Jigano's own face in return. "Trying is all we can do," he said simply. "And you're wise to take each human on their own merits. Some will be worth your time... others will not. And some will be dangerous," he cautioned, honest even if it damaged their current truce. "As a wise Fae once taught me, not all of your people think the same or agree on everything, or are even very nice... and the humans from the barrier aren't really any different in that regard. There are good apples and bad." He didn't know a 'Peter' off the top of his head, but he filed the name away for future investigation. If the man had so easily befriended a Fae as wary as this lady he would be worth talking to, to find out how he had done it and if the lesson could be passed on to others.

"This is Isuma," he said with a smile, lifting the chirruping gryphlet off his shoulder and holding her gently as she stretched towards Jiao, reep?ing a curious greeting. He kept her from being too inquisitive, however, so that Jiao could choose whether or not she wanted to reach out for the soft little head that offered itself for scritches or not. Hazel had known that she was a gryphon immediately, but perhaps the seamstress had different interests? "She's a gryphon," he explained with a fond smile for the cheerful little creature. "She's my companion... she chose me to bond with, linking our hearts and spirits. And she loves having her ears scratched," he teased gently, as the kittenish gryphlet squeaked happily at being the center of attention.

"My name is Jigano, by the way," he added, realizing belatedly that he hadn't introduced himself earlier, too busy trying not to give offense. "Is there a name I may call you?"
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Jiao Chen
Seamstress
Age: 45 | Height: 4'6" | Race: Fae | Nationality: Natural
Level: 1 - Strg: 9 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 10 - Luck: 14
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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#16

Jiao laughed and shook her head as Jigano tried to tell her that some humans would be dangerous. She was sure she could handle anything they could throw at her -- even the big man who had made her the fabrics. It was not hard to outsmart humans and if they tried to use brawn over brains, she could just fly away. It would have to be a silly Fae, she thought, to be beaten by a human.

She leaned in curiously to see Isuma, in a way that almost mimicked the way the gryphon did. "She's kinda cute." Jiao concluded after a while, stroking the top of Isuma's head and scritching her neck. "But isn't it kinda weird to bond your heart with an animal? You mean like...married?"

"I'm Jiao. ..Our names are kind of similar...I hope people don't get us mixed up." Curiousity overflowing now that they were inching towards civility, she sat down nearby and asked: "So what was your world like?"

JIAO
Some girls fight hard
Some face the trial
Some girls were just meant to smile


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Jigano Silversmith
Provost / Lorekeeper ☆ Loreseeker's Guild
Age: 28 | Height: 6'2" | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 7 - Strg: 14 - Dext: 30 - Endr: 30 - Luck: 25
ISUMA - Mythical - Gryphon (venomous)
Played by: Cirago Offline
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Posts: 1,537
MP:
#17
Blithe and confident, Jiao brushed off his warning and Jigano didn't know enough about the Fae to be able to see whether her lack of concern was justified or not. Bowing to her greater expertise on her own abilities - literally, making a half-bow to her laughter - he instead raised Isuma for controlled pets, suspecting Jiao would not appreciate little prickling talons plucking at the threads of her garments if Isuma tried to hop up to her shoulder. "She thanks you for your kind words," he said with a laugh as the gryphlet bumped her head up into the petting, beginning to pur at the scratches Jiao delivered.

"No, not like married," Jigano chuckled. "There's nothing romantic about it. It's a different sort of bond entirely... like there was a piece of myself I didn't even know was missing until Isuma came along and filled it." He smiled at the shameless gryphlet, whose wings were flexing in contentment as Jiao found a particularly itchy spot. "I know what she's feeling, and she knows mine. Do the Fae not bond to anything?" he asked curiously, realizing that he had been assuming that they could, but without any real evidence or reason to, aside from their superficial similarities to human appearances.

"It is my honor and pleasure to meet you, Jiao," he said formally, offering her a nod of respect as she joined him nearby. Her question was met with a smile. "I lived in a northern land, called Numeria," he said, beginning his tale again, this time for a new audience. "It was cooler there than here, with rolling plains, tundra, and thick forests. The life was more like the Greatwood - healthy and green - than the tired land within the barrier. And there were many, many different races who lived there, and worked together, and sometimes fought each other. Humans and elves, orcs and dwarves, kitsune and tengu, and the elemental races, too." He smiled at his Fae companion as he recaptured a gryphlet who was determined to go curl up in Jiao's lap and distracted her by tickling her hind paws.

"What about your world?" he asked curiously. "I've read the human histories, but I've not heard the Fae side of things. How would you describe your home to a distant traveler?"
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Jiao Chen
Seamstress
Age: 45 | Height: 4'6" | Race: Fae | Nationality: Natural
Level: 1 - Strg: 9 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 10 - Luck: 14
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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#18

"Oh...huh. I mean, yeah, I guess they do...but I haven't. I don't know if I'd wanna share my...soul...with an animal." Jiao said. Her voice wasn't disgusted by the idea, not quite, but clearly uncomfortable. She had always liked to keep her most personal things, her core, close to her heart. Most people only got to see a layer at the surface. That something could so easily pierce through and know her was a terrifying idea.

"Numeria..." She repeated to herself, tasting the new word. As much as Jiao felt the customary Fae distaste for Outlanders, her great curiosity got in the way. It was fun to learn about new worlds, almost like myths.

Honestly, compared to other Outlanders who had told her of worlds torn apart by war and covered in 'glowing evil clouds', Jigano's world sounded pretty soft. Still, he had a whole host of unfamiliar words. Jiao petted Isuma's head as she was taken away and asked: "What's a Kitsune? Or a...Tengu?"

How would she describe Sidhe to a traveller? She tapped her chin. "I guess...I'd say it's a village in the forest, where the Fae live. We live a lot longer than the humans, and um...we can fly. There's a lot of crafters and artists there, and some...boring people like Delah too. We work a lot with the forest and the nature here, and we worship the Gods." It did not even occur to her to refer to her Gods as 'Old', since The Voice clearly was not a 'new god'.

JIAO
Some girls fight hard
Some face the trial
Some girls were just meant to smile


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Jigano Silversmith
Provost / Lorekeeper ☆ Loreseeker's Guild
Age: 28 | Height: 6'2" | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 7 - Strg: 14 - Dext: 30 - Endr: 30 - Luck: 25
ISUMA - Mythical - Gryphon (venomous)
Played by: Cirago Offline
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Posts: 1,537
MP:
#19
He nodded understanding at Jiao's choice, his smile rueful. "I thought the same thing, but Isuma didn't give me much choice in the matter... and I'm grateful for that. From what I've seen, the types of creatures that form these bonds tend to be... hmm. Smarter than normal animals, generally speaking. More complex and aware of past and future. But it is a lifelong connection, and that isn't a responsibility many would choose to bear, I think." He said it simply, with the understanding of one who knew what it was like to hoard and hide his soul away. That it was thanks to Isuma that he had begun to heal some of the grievous scars upon his heart so that it could begin to open again and let others in was perhaps more than Jiao needed to know, and so he kept that to himself as he supervised the gryphlet so she didn't get into accidental mischief.

He was pleased with her curiosity in his world, and grinned at her questions, tilting his head to the side with a chuckle. "They are both races that blend aspects of human and animal, at least physically, though each has their own distinct cultures. The Tengu have traits similar to crows; although they are a little shorter than humans and walk on two legs, they are covered in feathers, and they have beaks for mouths, with taloned fingers and toes, though they lack wings. Kitsune are the fox folk of my world, like the Tengu but with vulpine traits instead. But unlike the Tengu they are born shapechangers, able to take a fully fox or fully human form at will from the time they are born."

In return he listened to Jiao's description of Sidhe Village, nodding at her words, and tilting his head curiously at the news that Fae lived longer than humans. "The elves of my world can live half a millenia or more, but they are tall and wingless. And the dwarves are shorter, stout and broad, delvers and miners, usually, who live around three hundred years," he offered. "But I haven't heard of any such similar races here." He considered her wording on the gods thoughtfully before adding: "Did you continue to worship Ludo and Safrin and Frey, while they were within the barrier?"
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Jiao Chen
Seamstress
Age: 45 | Height: 4'6" | Race: Fae | Nationality: Natural
Level: 1 - Strg: 9 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 10 - Luck: 14
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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#20

"I think I'd be kinda mad if some animal decided to just join with me forever without even asking..." Jiao pointed out, raising her eyebrows as she looked down to the ground. Any companion that tried to bond with her without consent would find itself consumed with plenty of her rage shortly thereafter, she thought.

As Jigano began to explain the races on his world, Jiao wondered if that was why he seemed so into bonding with an animal. Sounded like the line between humanoid and creature had been blurred in his land; she looked him up and down trying to see if he had any particular animalistic qualities. She supposed he reminded her a bit of a swan, but that was more to do with his hair and his attitude than anything physically important.

"Well, we can. I'm 45. Humans at 45 look wrinkly and old, but I don't." She pointed out, splaying out her fingers before her face.

As for the Gods...Jiao had never been a particularly pious person. But still, she had an answer. "Some people did. But most Fae pray right to Vi or Mort or Caido. You know, the important ones. Or at least, I think they do. I don't know what people do at the shrine in their house, you know? Do you follow one of them?"

JIAO
Some girls fight hard
Some face the trial
Some girls were just meant to smile


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Jigano Silversmith
Provost / Lorekeeper ☆ Loreseeker's Guild
Age: 28 | Height: 6'2" | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 7 - Strg: 14 - Dext: 30 - Endr: 30 - Luck: 25
ISUMA - Mythical - Gryphon (venomous)
Played by: Cirago Offline
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Posts: 1,537
MP:
#21
"As you say," Jigano agreed with a wry smile, giving up - for the moment - his attempt to explain that Isuma was hardly a normal animal. "It is not for everyone." She seemed a poised and cocky kind of person, and as a seamstress she was likely fastidious. A pet of any kind seemed a poor match for her, though he hoped she might someday find the joy that he had, in the most unexpected of places.

"You most certainly do not," Jigano agreed to Jiao not looking wrinkly, offering her a small half-bow. "From a human perspective you look completely untouched by the ravages of age." a teenager, perhaps, as humans measured things? Forty-five, though... yes, the Fae were more in line with elves and dwarves than humans, he decided. If she were 45 and in her second decade, he mentally calculated... round up to fifty or sixty, divide in half to get the equivalent of a human decade...Twenty-five or thirty or so years to a human ten, perhaps? So they likely lived between 250 and 300 years, more akin to dwarves than elves.

"Of course," he murmured, nodding wry agreement that Jiao couldn't know what other people did in private. "The gods we were closest to inside the barrier were Ludo and Safrin and Frey, though some worshiped the Old Gods as well. I respect Safrin greatly, and Vi through her, though the one I pray to most is Ludo," he confided gravely. "Their task is one that resonates with me, from the path I walked on my world. But what of you, honored seamstress? If I may ask, which god do you feel most drawn to?"
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Jiao Chen
Seamstress
Age: 45 | Height: 4'6" | Race: Fae | Nationality: Natural
Level: 1 - Strg: 9 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 10 - Luck: 14
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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#22

Jiao nodded. It definitely wasn't. She was trying to be less judgemental with Jigano after he had called her out, but it was hard when she knew he tied his brain to a weird bird. Still, if he was willing to drop it so would she, with an odd look towards Isuma (who was still cute, admittedly).

She seemed very pleased indeed by Jigano's compliment and touched her cheeks, smiling widely and battering her lashes. Jiao was well aware she looked young compared to the average human of her age but it was always nice to have a reminder.

But it seemed Jigano didn't want to dwell on her looks (pity) and instead wanted to talk about the Gods. She wouldn't have pegged him for a Ludo guy, not really. Safrin would have been her first assumption, though he spoke of her like an accquaintance. "I...I don't really go to the shrines much." Jiao stared at her feet, a little like a naughty child. "They don't usually respond to me anyway. But when we do festivals Vi and Caido are mentioned a lot, so..I guess those two."

JIAO
Some girls fight hard
Some face the trial
Some girls were just meant to smile


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Jigano Silversmith
Provost / Lorekeeper ☆ Loreseeker's Guild
Age: 28 | Height: 6'2" | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 7 - Strg: 14 - Dext: 30 - Endr: 30 - Luck: 25
ISUMA - Mythical - Gryphon (venomous)
Played by: Cirago Offline
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Posts: 1,537
MP:
#23
He grinned at her coquettish antics, laughing appreciatively at the way she batted her eyes at him, and pulled Isuma back into his lap to distract her with teasing fingers until she was more focused on batting at them than trying to sneak over to investigate Jiao more thoroughly.

He almost chuckled at her reluctant admission that she wasn't the most pious of people, though he certainly didn't blame her for that. "It's rare that they respond to anyone," he agreed with a nod. "They have their own reasons, and their own priorities... I have heard a little of Vi." He tilted his head curiously. "A stern god, but a powerful and beautiful one, from the vision I was given. But, I must admit, I know very little of the god Caido. The writings about them that we might have once had were long ago lost to those within the barrier. Can you tell me about them, please?"
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Jiao Chen
Seamstress
Age: 45 | Height: 4'6" | Race: Fae | Nationality: Natural
Level: 1 - Strg: 9 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 10 - Luck: 14
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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#24

Jiao laughed a little to be asked a question about the Gods; the other Fae would be mortified to know she was the spiritual ambassador for their race. "No one knows much. Caido made the world and then...hasn't spoken to anyone, I don't think. Which is weird. If I made a world I'd want to ask everyone what they thought, you know? And if they didn't like it..." Aiming a finger at the ground, she made a little 'zap!' noise.

"They say that they live in the mountains...but no one's been there for a long time, not that I know. But I guess if they did go to the mountains and come back I might not know. And now that the storms there...no chance!" Jiao hugged her knees to herself and rested her chin on them. "I don't think it matters anyway. Caido probably doesn't care about any one person...someone like Safrin or Ludo is much more likely to help you with stuff. What did Ludo help you with?"

JIAO
Some girls fight hard
Some face the trial
Some girls were just meant to smile


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Jigano Silversmith
Provost / Lorekeeper ☆ Loreseeker's Guild
Age: 28 | Height: 6'2" | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 7 - Strg: 14 - Dext: 30 - Endr: 30 - Luck: 25
ISUMA - Mythical - Gryphon (venomous)
Played by: Cirago Offline
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Posts: 1,537
MP:
#25
Jigano grinned at Jiao's display of godly disapproval, laughing quietly at her zapping noise, which Isuma followed with bright, golden eyes, trying to see what Jiao was shooting at. "A lovely goddess with a fiery fist?" he teased. "But I suppose a deity that grand has loftier concerns than a mere mortal can come up with," he agreed with a nod for Jiao's perspicacious point. "The mountains... I saw a map once, with mountains west of the Greatwood." He said it casually, but he sighed a moment later. "And there are storms south of us, too. How long have the storms you  mentioned raged?" Something else that dated to the fall of the barrier? Or were these older?

He tilted his head at her rather personal question, lips quirking in a wry smile as he remembered how Eliza had also poked and pried at what made him tick. "I gave them my dreams for a time, in exchange for their agreement not to play tricks on a... on someone dear to me," he said, expression softening for a moment before he regained his usual composure, offering a light shrug. "And I would like to do something about the monsters that roam during Long Night... at least, within the barrier there were monsters." He raised a quizzical brow, wondering if Jiao was familiar with them. "Some of them seem to be disembodied spirits or angry ghosts, and so I wanted something that might serve to capture and hold them, until they could be returned to Mort."
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Jiao Chen
Seamstress
Age: 45 | Height: 4'6" | Race: Fae | Nationality: Natural
Level: 1 - Strg: 9 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 10 - Luck: 14
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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#26

Jiao quite liked the phrase 'lovely goddess with a fiery fist', nodding and smiling at it. If she could ever hope to ascend to divinity (something that sounded like quite a lot of work, really) she could only wish for such a title. "They began after the barrier fell...I'm sure they'll end eventually, but no one can get through anymore. They're really bad, apparently." It was clear from her shrug she had not tried personally.

She tilted her head at Jigano's description of his relationship with Ludo. "Why would it play tricks on someone? If you just leave Ludo alone it should leave you alone. It just wants to play." His ambitions were oddly high too, wanting to get rid of..monsters? "What do you mean monsters?"

"You want to do a lot of things, don't you? Are you trying to get back home?"

JIAO
Some girls fight hard
Some face the trial
Some girls were just meant to smile


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Jigano Silversmith
Provost / Lorekeeper ☆ Loreseeker's Guild
Age: 28 | Height: 6'2" | Race: Attuned | Nationality: Outlander
Level: 7 - Strg: 14 - Dext: 30 - Endr: 30 - Luck: 25
ISUMA - Mythical - Gryphon (venomous)
Played by: Cirago Offline
Change author:
Posts: 1,537
MP:
#27
"They must make things terribly inconvenient," he murmured with a faint, thoughtful frown, considering how they had kept the barrierfolk limited in where they could go... funneling them straight into contact - and immediate conflict - with the Fae.

His expression lightened somewhat at Jiao's questions, and his lips quirked back into a wry smile as he gave Isuma a finger to gently nibble with her beak, her talons clasped carefully around his wrist. "They certainly seem that way now, at least. But inside the barrier... I think they were frustrated, even bored," he admitted. "They couldn't fulfill their duty to bring the souls of the dead to Mort while the barrier remained up. So their idea of play could be dangerous for mortals caught on the other end of it." He smiled ruefully, glancing up at Jiao again, though his humor faded somewhat at her question about monsters.

"Monsters that we didn't see, but we heard and felt," he tried to describe, finding that he lacked the words that he wanted. "Within the barrier, those caught outside during Long Night are usually killed before they can reach safety again. You can hear them, outside the walls, scratching and cackling and trying to get in." He shivered, and Isuma stopped her play to look up at him with wide golden eyes, worried for her companion and the darker memories that were rising. They could do more than that, of course, but he wasn't sure Jiao would believe him even if he tried to explain it, so he took a deep breath, and resumed his wry smile at her other questions.

"Ah, well, keeping the body and mind busy helps one to sleep at night, they say. I've certainly found it to be true. I like to stay moving and keep sight of my goals." He hesitated only briefly, then shook his head, his smile turning a little sad as he scratched Isuma's fluffy chest. "Home... my home is here, now. Or at least, my heart is, and that's the only home I could ask for. My family died several years ago, and many of my friends. Those of us who survived went our separate ways quite some time ago so... no, there is little for me to return to, even if it were possible."

He tilted his head at the pretty Fae, smile warming as he found a more neutral topic, he hoped. "Have you always wanted to be a seamstress?"
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Jiao Chen
Seamstress
Age: 45 | Height: 4'6" | Race: Fae | Nationality: Natural
Level: 1 - Strg: 9 - Dext: 12 - Endr: 10 - Luck: 14
Played by: Lancydulac Offline
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#28

"Mmm...well, I never left that much anyway." Jiao shrugged. She watched with a little smile as Jigano gave Isuma his finger, the action sweet despite her confusion and discomfort around the bond between them. He explained about monsters of the sort she had never heard of before, ones that could not be seen but were real enough anyway.

"I've never heard of that at all." She said, which made sense if they were something borne of the barrier itself, she supposed. "...Maybe thats why everyone from in the barrier is so sad and boring. You're the first one I've met that wasn't totally traumatised over something." Though he still had time to prove himself troubled, she supposed.

There was little for him to return to, he said, which was unusual; most people she'd spoken to seemed passionate about their homes one way or another, either glad to be free of them or desperately wanting to return. "Hmm. Then maybe it's good you came here. I dunno how the Outlanders were picked, but a lot of people seem to not like that they were brought here."

His question made her shake her head and glance back towards her fabric, which had floated to the surface in some parts, the colour already a slightly translucent red. "No...not really. I just...ended up doing it, and I'm good at it, so it's fine. I get to use pretty colours and there isn't really anything else I'd like to do." The answer was surprisingly honest for Jiao, delivered in a more sombre voice than her usual flippant tone.

JIAO
Some girls fight hard
Some face the trial
Some girls were just meant to smile


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