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Year 18

About EmperorWhenua

  • Birthday 07/23/1992

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Dark Hunters Attack

Dark Hunters Attack (201/293)

  1. IC Inokio | Sado, izakaya ::Just Inokio,:: he corrected. He'd lost the right to call himself a Korae when the rora stripped him of honour and privilege. ::I wish for an audience with the Mashtet and speak of the future—I cannot say more. But I will need assistance in both getting smuggled out of Sado to Hanaloi and unraveling the mystery of the 'lost clan's disappearance. And if you help me, I can promise you riches of plant and herb regardless of my own success.::
  2. IC: Sulov | Sulov Maru’s Trail Mix and Hookah Bar "What the koro and our leaders do in the future is something we can influence in time," Stannis said calmly, making a plea for pragmatism and patience with his tone. His eyes belied his fierce determination, however; usually dull pearly grey, they suddenly glowed with a brilliant intensity of fiery determination. "As a warrior, I know there are current threats below that need contending. I intend to stem their danger. Do you require something before lending your strength, brother?" @Void Emissary @Emzee
  3. IC Sigrus | Po-Wahi Road "Of course he doesn't go into detail," the often silent but always observant administrator said with a stir. "Speaking plain ruins his brand as a ✨prophet✨." Accustomed to the high-elevation forests against the Ko-Wahi slopes and their cool climes, Sigrus was absolutely suffering under the sweltering Po-Wahi heat. His hopsack woolen cape, usually kept close and tight, was now thrown wide open, its cloth bunched together on his back, and exhibited his rarely-seen twin meteor maces dangling at his sides—for some, it was a glimpse that even the most peaceful of men could be dangerous. "There's a lesson that even Stannis, in his 'wisdom,' is still learning, yes—That is: Not everyone who performs miracles is holy, no."
  4. IC Umbraline Yumiwa | The Yukanna I dismissed the toa's gesture with a disarming smile and gently guided her hand off my shoulder. "Maru, your apologies, well-intentioned as they are, are of no use to me," I retorted, perhaps in a tone considered too curt for imperial court manners but probably welcomed on Mata Nuian's ears. "I trust that your people will make things right because such is right to do, and not out of any remorse that your actions affected realms beyond your own. If your great enemy is ours too, and our cultures are not alone in this world, then how many other nations may have failed to end this darkness?" I let the thought linger a moment, like a seed falling to the earth and left to be watered later. "The matoran who accompanied my uncle in the prophesy's fulfillment sailed with us—our exodus was their return," I finally said in answer to Maru's question. "Their names are Lekua, Leli, Tarnok, Soraya, Kellin, and Seven, and they are likely still here in Ga-Koro. I imagine you'll seek them out and hear the tale from their own mouths." @Vezok's Friend @BULiK
  5. IC Stannis | Onu-Koro, Sulov Maru’s Trail Mix and Hookah Bar A philosophical objection. Stannis hadn't expected this sort of a argument from Sulov but he nevertheless welcomed the occasion. These sorts of concerns were what he, the most spiritual of the Maru by far, was particularly well equipped to negotiate with. He instinctively wanted to argue that darkness is just a lack of light, that spreading Matoran influence in the understories of their island was dispelling the evil below akin to spraying mold with vinegar, but that wasn't right. That didn't do justice for all the terrible things they'd seen as a toa team, that Sulov had born witness to as a brother or an individual. They'd dealt with evil in many forms, and each time it had been a tainted, wretched, mutated nothingness, the sort of thing that keeps children up at night and soldiers alert in day in expectant terror, not a mere infestation one dispatches exterminators to deal with. That sort of argument was not suited for this wise audience. He could have said that they would be claiming the Dark Walk by mere posting their koro-banners, claiming by act of martial colonization, but after so many scuffles and near-wars between akiri and mercenary armies it was foolish to lend any credence to notions of imperialism even if it were generalized to a sense of united Matoran cultural expansion. That premise had fallen flat in discussions held in learned circles before. So why did Stannis say the word "claim?" It certainly wasn't because Renaka had uttered the term in his presence—her concerns lied in promoting Po-Koro's security interests above anything else. The Wanderer knew why, of course, but the answer was not very palatable to most other characters: "Claim" sounded cooler and apt for the proposal given and it was a usage not concerned with semantic exactness or regurgitating the demagoguery of popular politicians. Stannis used a word that seemed fitting, and Sulov was reading into it. Which is why Stannis should have been more careful—after all, he knew his brother was whip-smart and keen as a honed blade, and nary a speck of ore escaped his senses so a simple misplaced word was as prominent as the most glowing of lanterns. Sulov questioned everything, as it was in his nature to inquire in all things with cautious vigilance, and among equals he would never hesitate to question Stannis himself, as he so did. So what other avenue did Stannis have but to explain his speech with the most direct, humorless response? "Seemed like a good word to use," he said with a tilt of his head, a shrug of a shrug. "The idea is to take the passages away from the Makuta, not to merely borrow them. I haven't given up on the hope of doing away with the Darkness from our island, and if they shall not be the Makuta's hallways for eternity then to whom shall they go?" @Void Emissary @Emzee
  6. IC Stannis | Sulov Maru’s Trail Mix and Hookah Bar "If Onu-Koro wants to enact a similar strategy for your dark walk passageways, that is," Stannis clarified. In now way did Stannis command his koro's love the way Sulov did, a shortcoming that grew equally from his non-native Po-Koronan status and ******able mystique, but in a small window of time he grew to comprehend Renaka considerably. Stannis knew she had a deficit wrought by her predecessor and favor to cultivate with the other akiri. Rejecting an offer to assist another koro doing the same dangerous work Onu was asking them to support would be a misjudgment Renaka could not make. "You'd have Po-Koro's support in kind."
  7. IC Stannis | Sulov Maru’s Trail Mix and Hookah Bar Stannis leaned back and crossed his arms and cracked his signature lopsided smirk. The Maru's leader was indomitable but his thoughts were often lost in the clouds of the Massif, so he relished it when more grounded personalities of people like Sulov kept things real. "Yeah," he murmured, "so, I'm happy to say I'm not just betting on the Virtues on this one." He glanced at Ra' as if to say Fill in the blanks if I miss anything, then went on. "The chambers down there are like a garrison building power, and if we don't claim and seal these passageways we'll allow our enemies to make free use of the Walks to their own whims. No other Koro has the same affinity as your ilk do, we're all drastically underprepared to protect ourselves if—and when—counterattacks come, so we aim to deprive the Dark Walk of its usefulness to the forces of the Makuta. "Akiri Renaka wants to claim and fortify the Dark Walk under Po-Koro; Ra'lhen and I would rather close and bury it; neither idea is foolproof but I think they can be combined with good effect. An expedition to properly map the Dark Walk, followed by a taking of it by force to as close to the Mangaia as possible. Then, from there all the way back to the surface, establishing a network of reconning towers, seismic sensors, guard stations, and fallback points, with more hardened fortifications enabled with artillery and technology to withstand and rebuff attacks, and sufficient toa to create seals as needed at those points. "We know that, if truly pressed to do so, rahkshi could create new passageways, more Walks, so the idea is not to close off the Dark Walk entirely but rather to control its use and, failing that, provide ample warning to the koros in order to prepare. If we can employ this with success, other koro will be encouraged to do the same, and perhaps we'll even be able to completely root out the darkness down there. "And your input and expertise is, as always, expected and respected." @Emzee @Void Emissary
  8. IC Inokio | Sado, izakaya Interest was good. Interest meant he had a chance to get her help and he'd be morose if this went sideways. He wiped his chin with a cloth, then set his hands on his lap to fidget with the tassels of his obi as the distraction had become a necessary outlet for his anxiety. Sydelia would only be the third person to learn he was not killed in action, let alone still on Sado—the only other two being the late sergeant of the guard and Umbraline Rayuke. ::Thank you for your consent. ::I am Inokio, formerly of Clan Korae, branded Battlemaster and dismissed Minister of State... and I was in the employ of the Fursic Diplomatic Corps. Those credentials are how I know about the hidden Umbraline botanical caches, but also why I know of you, and that Clan Mashtet still exists.:: He poured another cup from his carafe of sake. ::Soooo. Have I lost you, or do I still have your interest?::
  9. IC Yumiwa | Ga-Koro, the Yukanna "Then it would be an honor to be your toaship's ambassador." Assuming that I retained continued consent from our mental link a moment before, I deposited a series of images in the toa's mind: A map of the archipelago; the view of the Sado skyline at dusk from Zuto Nui's temple; a detailed chart of Mount Koshiki's terrain; a view of kanohi dragons; and a faded secondhand image of the gate Rayuke had opened taken from his mind's eye. "That's the Archipelago—our homeland. Fifty-nine islands all in all, each diverse and unique as the hues of sunset. Some are ecological paradises of field and herb, others are urban metropolises of quartz made edifice, and all others are in-between. For the urban, we have Sado—our empire's capital, as much a city as it is a jewel-adorned coronet, and my home where I grew up and ruled from. Thousands of Dasaka, Dashi to Datsue, dwelled and worked in the midochondric core of the Empire. "This 'lock,' as you refer to it, is on Mount Koshiki on Odaiba, the largest island and most volcanically active of them all. The dragons my culture holds affinity for dwell there, but there was apparently much more to see. My uncle and a retinue of mystically-transported matoran of your villages opened that lock, and unveiled the gate. Upon its unlocking, this last image you see is Rayuke's very memory of it... and of the entity that emerged from it. Our Zataka—or, your Makuta." The mental slidehow ended with that scene of the gateway and the dark, gorgeous deific entity that emerged from it. "By now, however, all that you have seen has since changed."
  10. IC Stannis | Onu-Koro, Sulov Maru’s Trail Mix and Hookah Bar "That's good, new product is good, I suppose I'll stay subscribed for now," Stannis said with a satisfied nod. "Our second business item is more sensitive, but there is no way to address this delicately. Po-Koro has a new akiri and she is good, fair, and decisive, and we've been appointed her special envoys. There is darkness growing in the Dark Walk as the archfoe is returning from the beyond, and to fight it we are planning an expedition to seal the Dark Walk, but Po-Koro is not powerful enough to do this task by itself. We need Onu-Koro's strength, and I need your strength." @Void Emissary @Emzee
  11. IC Sigrus | Po-Wahi, Papa Podu's "Hm? Land routes? Ah, I do, yes, yes," the wayfinder said to Nichou. He offered slightly more context this time to his friend, adding, "The Massif is secluded by intention but relies on trade routes by necessity. I charted all the major and minor trading roads before taking office."
  12. IC Yumiwa | Ga-Koro, the Yukanna Maru's question caught me by surprise. "Lady Toa," I ventured gently, "could it be true that, despite my people's representatives being among you for some time now, I am the first Dasaka to tell you about our home?" @Vezok's Friend
  13. IC Sigrus | Papa Podu’s Sigrus’ brow cocked back at Ranok in response. “Yes, yes.” His nose pointed north.
  14. IC Yumiwa | Ga-Koro, the Yukanna “Tsu-ru-gi.” Leah echoed Yumiwa’s word for the sword. I could feel the awkwardness in her torturous atempt. "Very good," I lauded, more for the toa's effort than her butchered pronunciation, then explained, "it's what we call such a straight-bladed sword." “I’m afraid the parallels continue. I know little about the sword or it’s original owner - but as far as my people are concerned: It was given to, wielded by and survived Makuta’s favored servant - Heuani. In his hands it brought death and destruction to our villages. Until Toa Joske stopped him. After that…it’s path becomes unclear. As far as I know Joske kept possession of it - until his death.” She paused for a beat, expression visibly pained. “He was… the Maru’s vanguard. I don’t know who took up the blade afterwards, or if it remains in the Mangaia.” How odd it was that this purported group of six toa, of which Leah Maru belonged, all had the same name despite coming from distinctly different families, I thought. Perhaps it was a fashion of camaraderie to refer to themselves as a singular, a form of demonstrable unity. In a sense it was inspiring to me, and I wondered who this Maru person was they all fashioned themselves after, but before I could turn that stray thought into a question to sate my own curiosity she asked me about my own family. The toa glanced out to sea for a moment and said, “Your uncle… is he here?” I joined her in looking out over the azure horizon, though with fundamentally different intentions from hers. Whereas she gazed there and found her focus, I easily lost myself in the far off seas. Water was her elemental home, but for me it was a long and anguished passage. "No, Lady Toa," I said, and grasped the railing tightly. "My uncle is somewhere out there, back on Sado. I need to hope so—he's the last Umbraline at home." A tear slithered down my cheek as I thought of my uncle left on the far side of the world where I hoped my appeals to Zuto Nui were heard. It was an equal exchange with the toa—I could sense her feelings as they dwelled in her head but now she could sense my own as it congealed to a rivulet of water and slid off my chin. And then I beat back the feelings and looked at Maru. "Whatever investigations we do will have to be here." @Vezok's Friend
  15. IC Inokio | An award-winning eatery in Sado Sydelia rightly guessed Inokio's wish to enter her mind, the equivalent to entering a private room and shutting the door to outside listeners. As far as he was aware neither of them had been followed to the eatery, but the ronin's life was rife with paranoia and espionage so he took great pains to make all risks measured to the milligram. Telepathically inserting his thoughts into Sydelia's mind just so offered him the least amount of risk. He nodded at her invitation and then waited in silence. As soon as the food and drinks were provided, Inokio wasted no time in seizing a quail egg with the chopsticks and entered. ::I know who you were,:: his voice said in Sydelia's mind, or rather, a voice that sounded as Inokio imagined himself to sounding. It came in broken sentences that were more pictures than words, thoughts that sunk into her own thoughts like claws in dense fur. ::I know this about you because of what you are now. We were once butterflies who flitted at the same tree.:: The implications were visceral—the man was claiming to be a former Fursic, and by means of his demonstrated precautions was adept at spying. Claiming to be a former spy was a dangerous thing to do, it meant he had enemies and agendas, and spoke nothing about his current loyalties. With a 'normal' Dasaka that may have been the end of the discussion, an exit explained with a No thank you—this is too much drama for a lunch meeting, but Sydelia was not one to adhere to those standards and she didn't back down. For her, Inokio's words likely excited her for the dangers it all but guaranteed and he indulged her fascination further ::Knowing someone's name from behind a one-way mirror holds unbalanced power over the other, which I want to address. My name carries no honor, my dignity is a thing of memory, and telling people who I am places them in danger, but I am compelled to tell you my name so that you may know who you are dealing with. I wish to deal with you. I wish to gain your trust, or, failing that, your respect, because I wish to work with the versions of you from both the past and present.:: He deposited the quail egg in his maw and savored the creamy yolk. It was a shame for Sydelia that none of Inokio's speech was carnal. ::Do you want to know my name, Mashtet Sydelia?::
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