Description: Sheeva arrives in Earthrealm to find it nearly in ruins! Could this be the work of Princess Mileena? No, it is some other yet to be identified party. Thankfully for her, a local, overly-trusting fox seems quite eager to help her not only track Mileena down but introduce her to some of Earthrealm's more powerful parties. All she asks for in return are a few human lives..
The kitsune had seen better days : obvious bruises not concealed on her face, a bloated lip, yet in spite of her obvious injuries she stood tall and proud. In due time, she would heal, and even if they left scars or mark they would be that she fought for ideals, a mark of her background, something to be proud of. At least, that's her belief and what she had been taught.
The woman has been acting as a sort of vanguard after the many lost her kin endured at the hand of humans. She is standing atop a desserted building, watching over a devastated scenery for signs of guerila from humans. They were resilient and tenacious and fought to fend them off with all their might... Alas, they weren't the only ones who were resolved to see this through the end.
She keeps a low profile but moves from a building to another, eschews safety and jumping from one spot to another, proudly showing her tails and not concealing them even as she acts as a scout and vanguard.
But apparently even these bastard races that had long forgotten their true origins could sometimes manage brief sparks of enlightenment.
Such as the glory that Metro City had turned into thanks to Majigen. It was truly a sight to behold.
"Beautiful.." Called a voice from a statuesque figure standing over a tall building. The destruction, the slaughter, the chaos that now extended across the landscape. It looked much like Outworld, reminding this tall figure of home. "Earthrealm may yet have potential." Said Sheeva to herself as she oversaw the fire that was once the imposing Metro City, reduced to how much rubble and debris with scattered groups fighting each other. This what it meant to be an Outworlder, to know nothing but constant battle for survival, and ignore the petty temptations of luxury that only the slothful sought out. This was a warrior city.
Ripe for Konquest for the Emperor.
Sheeva however couldn't stand idle to enjoy the landscape. She had a duty to do, and that was to find the wayward princess Mileena and her bodyguard Skarlet, both of them having previously spotted here. The tall Shokan woman exhaled and began to turn when she sensed a presence approaching her position quickly.
A figure approached, feminine yet with the scent of blood about them. Not a refugee either by the smell of steel about them, a warrior perhaps? Sheeva sought to find that out, mayhap they would know more about where to find the Princess.
As Kiyomi travels from building to build she would suddenly find her path barred by an amazingly tall woman, way past 7 feet tall. A woman who also seems to have two sets of muscular arms.
The woman was athletic and graceful as she soared from a rooftop to another, performing the long jumps required to move from one observation point to another. Her tails aren't quite as spread out as they use to be, holding on closely behind her.
Upon landing on another building, with Sheeva moving into her sight to block her way, Kiyomi's hand move to the handle of her katana instinctively. She stays in her knelt position, ready to draw her sword until she has the time to process who is the person in front of her. Her amazonian built definately marked her as a fighter, yet the second pair of arms she had made her inhuman enough for her to think she might not be her enemy.
The tension in the vixen's muscles obviously ease and she straightens herself up. She moves her hand away from the handle of her sword and she nods slowly to the other woman -- she seemed mature enough not to be a newborn darkstalker... Who knows, maybe she was one of Lord Dohma's associate?
Kiyomi glances over her shoulder, off into the distance, "Isn't it splendid?" She comments, "It's a blessing to be able to witness this marvellous happening..."
An unexpected response!
Not the basic iaijutsu stance, Sheeva was enough of a veteran warrior to recognize the position instantly. It was a wise decision to make when encountering a stranger, especially in a war torn environment such as this. With battles raging all around them, there was no way to tell if Sheeva was friend or foe. Kiyomi's quick reflexes and caution told the Shokan that she was no amateur scout.
What Sheeva was not expecting was to hear her agree with her previous thoughts of how beautiful this landscape looked. To think that moments earlier Sheeva thought only an Outworlder could appreciate the sight of such destruction. It looked like she still had much to learn about Earthrealm. Not that Mileena, Skarlet and Emrac's reports had been particularly informative. Sheeva could hardly blame all three of them, their whole purpose in existence was to do Kombat. Reconnaissance was well beyond their normal abilities.
Still, information gather was essential for any invasion, and /someone/ had to do it, and thus, Sheeva sought to learn more about this strange fox like woman instead of immediately attacking her, like most of her compatriots would have surely done.
"I concur." The Shokan's red eyes focused on Kiyomi, her voice was deep even for a woman, alluding to her Amazonian nature. "A sight worthy only of the strong."
Although Sheeva glanced in the direction Kiyomi was looking briefly, her gaze was mostly focused on the kitsune. Judging by her appearance, Sheeva concluded that she must be one of Earthrealm's Darkstalkers.
Only in Earthrealm could something so beautiful be born.
"I am known as Sheeva. Who may you be, warrior? Do you lead the pack responsible for this exquisite art?"
The only certitude Kiyomi had was that the person before her was not human : she might have once been and turned into this, or has been born like this, her appearance made her closer to the kitsune than what Sheeva might expect. Her origins, for the time being, didn't seem to be much of Kiyomi's concern as she didn't expect this woman from some otherwordly place.
Kiyomi shakes her head slowly before she returns her gaze upon Sheeva, "Alas, I do not possess the strength or powers to create a place like this. However, I serve the one responsible for this : Lord Dohma," Her tails sway slowly as she speaks, the woman casually assessing the warrior in front of her.
Lips curling into a smile, Kiyomi says, "They call me Lady Renard -- I am one of Lord Dohma's loyal enforcer. Tell me, Sheeva, why have you been drawn to this place?"
An assumption that might cost Kiyomi a lot. Something about the kitsune told Sheeva that she did a good bit of generalization considering she did not question the Shokan's origins. Something that the tactician of Outworld could use to her benefit.
Sheeva folded all four of her arms over her chest and regarded the kitsune carefully while returning her greeting.
"Well met, Lady Renard."
The Shokan warrior quickly reviewed what she had learn from reports before proceeding with her conversation.
FACT 1: According to Mileena, Earthrealmers did not know about Outworld's existence, Darkstalkers included. The fact that Kiyomi wasn't immediately running away from her or defending herself was evidence enough of that.
FACT 2: Some of these Earthrealmers could be compelled to working for them, either through intimidation or ignorance.
FACT 3: Some Earthrealmers called Outworlders Mermaids. That's still something Sheeva is looking at with a lot of scrutiny.
Knowing these few facts about the behavior of Earthrealmers, Sheeva devised a plan that would make full use of Kiyomi's strange trust towards her without compromising her mission. From the looks of it, the kitsune was none the wiser as to who Sheeva actually was, and if she didn't know better, then she wouldn't divulge too much about the Shokan's motivations.
"I commend you and your Master's work then. You have given these loathsome humans what they deserve." First lay on the compliments to really let Kiyomi know she's on her side.
"I seek two people very close to me, both lost to me in this conflict. Mileena is one.." Sheeva pauses, trying to think of a possible description she can give Kiyomi without betraying Mileena's Tarkatan origins. "She is a Kuchisake-onna." There, an Earthrealmer equivalent thinks she. "Her body is strong but her mind is.. fragile. She goes by Princess, Princess Mileena."
"The other is her guardian, Skarlet. She is a blood golem and was created to protect her."
"They were both last seen here from what I have heard. Might you have seen either of them, perchance?"
Creatures from Outworld was the least of Kiyomi's worries : to her, it was either humans or Darkstalkers, with Darkstalkers being obviously non-humans. In Sheeva's case, she was obviously not human, which made her a Darkstalker. Being one of her own, Kiyomi was less suspicious or at least, she allowed Sheeva the benefit of the doubt.
The woman's ears perk up at Sheeva's answer. It was a shame : she had hoped she might have been rallied up to Lord Dohma's cause and join them in this battle, though maybe the other two she speaks of have already done so.
Kiyomi shakes her head slowly, "I am afraid I have not heard either names... It is possible that they have joined our struggle and fought against the humans already, by our side," Kiyomi states. For some reason, she assumes the two she is looking for must be alike Sheeva -- abberations or monsters in some way, with inhuman features like Kiyomi and Sheeva possess.
Glancing back at her, Kiyomi says, "You seem like a strong warrior -- I am certain the person you are seeking must be as well, if they came here. Why don't you join us, and fight along our side against humans? We could look for them together," Kiyomi offers.
"What do they look like?" She adds. "I... Do have no idea what a Kuchisake-onna looks like... Nor a blood gloem," Kiyomi admits.
"An intriguing proposal.." Sheeva actually considers, bringing her right upper arm to stroke her chin.
In time, this alliance would cost Kiyomi dearly. She would no doubt pay for trusting an Outworlder so implicitly. Even if Sheeva /is/ one of the most reasonable creatures that Outworld has spawned, which is not saying much, she is bound to the Emperor and his lackeys, and if they so much as order Kiyomi's execution, Sheeva would not think twice about carrying out the sentence personally.
Such is Shokan's honor.
But for now, this might prove helpful for both of them. Might as well learn as much as she can about Earthrealm before the invasion while also scouting for Mileena and Skarlet. Besides, it would also give Sheeva the opportunity to thin the realm's defenders.
"It is entirely possible that they might have taken up arms with your brethren. They are both indeed very strong warriors." Although inwardly, Sheeva doubts very much either Mileena, Skarlet, or even Ermac had banded with any of the locals, they are all too.. volatile to do that.
A Kuchisake-onna looks like a normal woman save for the mouth. When exposed, she will show that her jaw is gigantically elongated and covered in razor sharp fangs. Prin--Mileena.." Sheeva catches herself from her slip up. "Wears a mask or a veil usually to hide it. She'll be easy to recognize when seen, her favorite color is pink and makes a point to wear it constantly."
"As for Skarlet, she looks much like a red headed human woman. However, being made entirely of blood means she lacks consistency. She will often drip with blood as if wounded. If you see a red headed woman with deep blue eyes, wielding two Tanto, and drenched in blood, chances are high it is her."
"If you can give me any information as to where locate them, I will ensure you are rewarded handsomely."
Sheeva smiles and bows her head slightly before straightening up. "As for your proposal.. it does sound.. appealing. However, I serve another Master and my allegiance is bound to Him. Should I be called to His side I will have to heed the call."
"If this is acceptable to you then I see no reason why we cannot help each other."
Years of oppression of the humans against Darkstalkers have led them to be more trusting toward their own kin. Not having anyone to turn to, there's always been this implicit solidarity amongst them. At the very least, her many experience and the various Darkstalkers Kiyomi had met all across the world seemed to all share this common trait.
It may be an assumption that might cost her dearly, but for the time being she has no reason to doubt Sheeva's words or expect something wicked from her. She knows well not to judge her by her appearance. Though if Sheeva proved to be a menace to her own, Darkstalker or not, Kiyomi would not hesitate to do what is necessary...
The more Sheeva was talking to her though, the more something seemed amist. The kitsune nods to the amazonian woman, her tails swaying back and forth lazily behind her, "I will keep an eye out for the two you've described to me. I will tell them you're looking for them,"
Kiyomi nods to the part about the rewardm, silently agreeint with her. It only made the whole mystery around Sheeva thicken... She was not just an ordinary Darkstalker... And on the lookout for a 'princess'
"Your Master must be the father of this Princess Mileena, is it?" Kiyomi risks herself asking. It was the first time Kiyomi ever heard of such noblity, which made it just more awkward, "Where do you and Princess Mileena hail from?" Kiyomi asks, "It is the first time I've heard of such nobility..." The woman adds, without hiding her skeptisism.
A half a smile spreads through Sheeva's lips when Kiyomi begins to catch on.
A good thing too, the Shokan was starting to be rather disappointed of Earthrealmer's simplicity. If it were this easy to fool them then there would be little to no resistance to the invasion.
In fact, they might not even put up a fight, and there is no honor in that. There cannot be honor if there is no Kombat.
"You are very perspective, Lady Renard." Sheeva says with a devious grin, perhaps alluding to her true nature. It changes to a softer, good natured smile, not yet given the Kitsune any reason to mistrust her. Although the Shokan's red eyes did sharpen considerably, a sign of someone becoming alert to a fight if necessary.
"My Master is indeed Mileena's father and I am here to retrieve her. They form part of a very ancient royal lineage which have lived in seclusion for centuries. It has been only after the recent troubles began that we have dared to come out into the open again. Princess Mileena in particular, she is still very young and whimsically curious of the world around her, she is not one to enjoy being bound for long."
The Shokan rests her many arms to her side, taking a more relaxed stance yet formal stance. "Her father and mother are both very protective and they will not suffer their daughter running about aimlessly for long. You can see then how it is very important that I retrieve her."
"I apologize as well, but I cannot tell you of our origins, doing such would betray my Masters' trust. I am sure you understand, surely you would not wish to betray your Lord Dohma's secrets to a complete stranger either, would you?" Incidentally, everything Sheeva has said thus far is completely true. She's just withholding information.
Could it be that Princess Mileena could be the youth of an old and powerful lineage of Darkstalkers? One who have, for some reason, forced to remain hidden and secluded, with various monstruous servants who have been chased away into exile due to humans? The kitsune attempts to understand the situation from her point of view : this whole thing sounds like some old forgotten myth...
Just as Kitsune were creatures of legend and folklore...
It is possible -- Kiyomi doubts Sheeva is lying to her, though her instinct tells her there's more to it than just that. Whatever it may be, Sheeva had not proven to pose a threat or showed any wish to interfer with Lord Dohma's plan. If anything, even if she was not a Darkstalker, her appearance alone would be enough to earn Sheeva some sympathy from Kiyomi as she does for every other Darkstalker.
Just a proof that her reality and Sheeva's one are two different things.
"Feel free to roam within Majigen as you please," Kiyomi says, gesturing her hand about, "And slaughter any humans you might encounter," Kiyomi's lips curl into a gentle smile, "I will do everything I can to help you -- I will seek them out as if they were one of my own pack, as I can understand the worries that must be haunting her parents and that you find her with haste,"
The kitsune nods to Sheeva, "In due time perhaps," She simply replies, not pressing the matter. Her answer seems to have pleased Kiyomi enough not to ask for more for now.
"Gladly." Sheeva makes a gracious bow, putting her lower hands together as if in prayer and her upper arms extended forward. A strangely elegant reverence for a muscled woman. It also looks strangely foreign, not at all from the Americas or Europe.. Asian perhaps.. she gives an Indian vibe if Kiyomi is knowledgeable of such a culture. She's not from around these parts, that's for sure.
"I will tear these pitiful humans asunder and lay their mangled corpses at your Master's feet." Says the dark skinned warrior woman as she straightens up. "I shall do this and more if you can assist me in my plight. This land is most treacherous and not yet welcoming of my wayward Princess." There is a genuine touch of worry from Sheeva's tone of voice, whatever her origins are, its clear she really cares a lot about this Mileena.
"Certainly." Sheeva gives a strange smile as Kiyomi nods to her. "I have no doubt that we will get to know each other more... intimately.. in due time."
The kitsune does not fully recognize the gesture but she knows enough to understand the deferent bow : she returns the gesture with one of her own, bowing gently and folding her arms in front of her chest. Hearing the fate Sheeva will earn to humans she might meet make her wonder if she shares her hate for them. Though the way she offered to do it so coldly makes her believe she most be a fearsome assassin or some sort of warrior who killed more than her share.
The kind you don't really want as an enemy...
Kiyomi straightens herself and nods to the other woman. She slowly strides by her side and moves toward the edge of the building, to glance off the distance, "Let us make haste then -- I suggest that we split up, to cover as much ground as possible... We can then meet up again here, by dawn... Hopefully, you will have found her or I will have, and you'll be able to be reunited once more by then,"
After all, looking for a Princess isn't that much extra work for a scout : "I'll be heading toward the tree, over the bridge, I suggest you take the eastern part of the town,"
If only Kiyomi knew how many has Sheeva killed.
"A sound tactical maneuver." Responds Sheeva, perhaps too eager to get things into motion. She is not a young Darkstalker by any means, so much can be seen by her composed attitude if not her stature, but she does display the signs of someone that has been locked in an area for too long. Something about her just seems completely foreign, like she hadn't done any interaction with other cultures in a long, long time. She's too formal and ancient despite her clear attempts to try and fit in.
Which just means she has that much ancient experience.
"I will meet you there then." Nods the Shokan as she begins to walk away from Kiyomi. "Good hunting, Lady Renard." And with a mighty leap that causes the concrete around her to explode with a sonic shockwave, Sheeva jumps hundreds of feet into the air and sails through the skies to land on what can only be the other side of the city.
Log created on 13:24:01 05/01/2015 by Sheeva, and last modified on 23:34:26 05/01/2015.