Description: Tracked down through the wonders of technology and human information networks after being tipped off overhearing a meeting with one of her plants, Sybil confronts the tanuki and tries to work out a mutually beneficial arrangement. One or both might end up drunk by the end.
Well, being violently assaulted by a blood-wielding member of this Library-place certainly changed Daichi's habits on how he interacts with humans. Having been carefree on the restrictions of his humanoid transformations, most people are wary or suspicious of tanukimimi's; his tail and ears are a potential tell currently on the record, and he's as a result being much more mindful.
The first order of business was purchasing a beanie and loose coat; both done with transforming leaves, but he could care less if those trying to track him down figure out he's also getting clothing. With that, he's taken the shape of a young, inoffensive-looking human with black air and light skin, ears covered up by a black beanie. A white tee-shirt and jeans, with his tail mostly-covered by the jacket, he's taken to skulking around for the last few days...
But he is completely unaware of the level that humans can monitor and track in their cities. It's not a minor task, but a sufficient leverage of money and investigation can put together the clues to point to a simple hotel; one that asks for cash and nothing else to get a room. The form he's been using definitely went there, although he keeps the front door locked and chained, windows drawn closed as he continues his research more desperately...
Which currently includes a television! The hotel has one, and once he figured it out, he has a talk show on talking about pointless politics. Mostly, it's tuned out... Daichi really needs to find a better source of info then these magazines and newspapers. So much info, none of it anything he cares about. Pollution and global warming are concerns, but he's not sure they are causing what he's come to the Earth realm to find...
The poor Tankui left behind a data trail. In the age of information, the sheer tech power of tech creates so much data to be found. Too much, the human can hardly process it, so it must be deferred to machine. But machines must first be told what to find. If a human is lucky, the intuition of knowing what to find will save the time of a score of servers.
Sybil didn't need to wait for luck. For her, it was just a matter of one of her little babies being in the right spot. A hotel that likes the taste of cash just needed one of their bills to be one of countless favorites. Before all the cameras and records got the Raccoon dog caught, the non-descript notes of Yen in the register had him found.
*KNOCK! KNOCK! KNOCK!* Sounded upon the door
Standing just outside the hotel room door was a pair of women. The shorter wore mundane white blouse and grey pencil skirt, with a head billowing long golden locks. To her side, was a lady who was taller to a grand degree. She was wrapped in a white suit that seemed to shimmer despite the limits of the light. The top of her head was capped by a wide silk hat, with long black hair pouring out behind it. Her face, that had a thick pair of dark shades covering her eyes and a grin that let out a little sentence.
"May I come in Daichi?"
Such subtle things, that would barely be a blunder, can rear their ugly head. This might be the last time that Daichi bothers to try and roost in Southtown... hiding in the forest might be a much safer bet, after all! At the moment, he's gnawing fiercely upon the end of a candy bar, having not bothered to retain his demihuman transformation when private. But the rattling knocks make his round ears perk, startled. ...doubly so at that. His name. Two people in the entire Earthrealm know it -- that human in the forest he met, and the bat who had some inadvertent egging. A female voice... is it the demon, then? She'd already transformed once, and he'd not be surprised if she tracked him down again. Padding over to the door, he presses an ear to it and listens. While focusing his senses, assessing the life force and chi of both. Sniff-sniff. Two...? Why are two here? And that doesn't feel like Echo at all... "Who is it?!" he says, in a gruff, growly sort of baritone. "How do you know that name!" Already making sure both his sake and walking staff are settled, in case he needs to make yet another rapid exit...
The tall woman began speaking in response to the guteral questions. "I know you won't realize the significance of my name, so you may just call me Sybil, and this is my assistant Goldie." The blonde casually raised her hand and gave a small "Yo". Her taller gave a cheerily positive voice as she began her pitch. "I have a business offer for you, and knowing things happens to be my business, so how of me knowing things is proprietary." She lifted her hands up in parallel in front of her. "I think we both can help each other" She lightly clapped her hands together.
"Would you be so kind as to let us in"
Sybil? As stated, Daichi has no clue who that is. Nor someone named Goldie. Still, he's incredibly suspicious how anyone could know his name... it's not as if it's merely hard to find. Information on the tanuki literally does not exist in this world, yet! But he's far too short to reach the peeper, and for now can only listen and assess as he rests against the door. He doesn't trust any humans in the first place, and these two... what do they even want with him? Although the mention of a knowledge specialist is certainly intriguing, he's no reason to believe anything she claims...
In the end, he does finally unlatch the door, shift the chain free, and slide it open. Although it's not a tanuki they see; he's transformed back into a young demihuman; round furry ears, and that long tanuki tail. He's a considerable aura that doesn't fit a Darkstalker, but visually at least, it's quite a trick.
"What do you want with me?!" he snaps. His voice is nothing like the one he used in his true form, more light and airy. "My business here is my own... what'll it take for all you humans to leave me alone?!"
She had gotten to the first step. Sybil began to speak in the doorway "It's not about what I want, it is about what -You- want. " She pointed her left hand in a finger gun. "You have a mission, a mission to find out what is causing that awful business back in your own realm"
Sybil leaned in for half a whisper, pivoting her height about her . She changed to a more somber and seemingly concerned tone "but knowing something is difficult, I can tell you first and second hand, People will study things their whole lives only to know even less than nothing about it. It could take close to ten or twenty years to even catch up with society, let alone start to know what esoteric source might cause corruption. Trying to learn all of this alone, while trying to be half underground like you are, the corruption might beat you to the mark."
She affixed her dark sunglasses right into the Demihuman's eyes. "Would you be to consider accepting my help? To not spend the rest of your life among humans?" She stretched out her hand to offer a shake.
"..." Daichi does not respond much to the information that Sybil is privy. But there's only one person he mentioned 'awful business in his realm' to. There are other ways to know, of course. Divination, spellcraft, other ascended beings, but... He had been eager to find some failing or cause to hate that particular human, so will take what he can get. If they seem legitimately surprised by his angry accusations, THEN he'll let them off the hook!
"Eheheh... their whole lives...? Interesting! You're right about one thing... I don't care to be here forever. And I'd rather know things sooner then later... but don't mistake me for having *human* motivations. Ten or twenty years...? That is nothing to me. I've lived far longer than that, and my kind don't die of biological concerns like 'age'. I once spent ten years just mastering tossing a hoop, and I can't say I use it much..."
Handshaking? That's a cultural thing he's not familiar with, and he eyes the human's hand warily. "C'mon, c'mon... I'm not excessively stupid..." Daichi continues, drawing open his sake bottle and taking a sip. Tanuki-tail giving lazy flits, as the seemingly eared human turns back towards the pair. "Yes, I want what you can offer, if it's genuine! But what interest do you have in ME? My allegiance is to the Spirit Realm, after all... and I'll do nothing to betray or threaten my homeland!!" After some thoughts, "But petty, boring human concerns...? I don't care about those. I'm sure my talents would be rather useful to any number of enterprising mortals, maybe..."
Offer bitten, the women stepped inside, Goldie closed the door behind them. "How many mortals are good enough to know your name without ever being told? And of those, who could learn of your problem without selling you out for the bounty? And I can assure you, the other options who are left will make your stomach churn."
In a display of her power to provide a hint of proof, Sybil let slip a great wad of money, that swiftly formed a semi-sanitary stool for her to sit upon. She pointed to the television, still playing the politics, before curtly "next that politician is gonna talk about the trade impact the new stock prices pose." As she awaited for her proof to develop, she turned her left palm upwards, cupped it, and spread apart her middle and ring fingers. Goldie filled the space with a wineglass, and filled the space within the glass as the TV rang on just as Sybil said.
The idea of her ability provided proof, she continued. "My interest in what I am buying from you is much like what I am selling you. Information. " She sipped from the succulent vintage. "it would be easier work for me to get bits of information from all across such a wide world, while it would be trivial for you to do a few disguises here and there to hear this and that. " She swished her wine in fitting directions as she said such. The broker readjusted her grip upon the glass as she recentered herself to directly deliver the clarification. "Would you be willing to do such tasks?"
"I have no idea!" Daichi says, bitterly. He seems to know of the possibility, although it still makes his metamorphed stomach turn. After conflicting with Katsuro, being seen in public via strange light on a rooftop, and his own machinations... ah, the tanuki has been careless in general. Impatience has not been tempered by a long life, that much is certain. "And... what? What bounty?" His presently human face pales at the thought. The papers spoke of bounties fairly often, but he didn't recall ever seeing his own... unsurprising, as he's both very low on the totem pole, and quite new.
Predicting the future...? Seers are not *exactly* rare in the Spirit Realm, and likely much more common then on Earth. Although he's equally baffled by the literal use of money to make a seat. Suspicious, squinty eyes stay on Goldie, who's purpose being here he can't yet finger. Definitely not to intimidate him, that much he knows. "I don't know how this magic artifact box works... here."
Daichi grabs a couple dice from within his pouch, then sits on the edge of the bed. "Can you guess THIS?!" Of course, she can. Ascertaining the future of a couple normal dice is a simple thing for Sybil. He'll do it enough times in a row to be VERY STATISTICALLY UNLIKELY, before closing his fists over. The last time he tosses it, it'll come up 'tanuki tail', given he just transformed them. If she can guess THAT before seeing it, then he'll know her claim is the real deal. ...that she has certain restrictions to it he's not even the slightest inclination!
"Mrrf... I see... a human seer would be very valuable..." Daichi agrees, kneading at his chin. "And money I didn't have to transform.... fine!! As long as I agree to your tasks, it seems a fair trade. But I demand you assign someone to teach me more of what this dumb realm has. Two weeks, and I feel like I'm barely scratching the surface! There must be someone to work as a guide or whatnot to... human... weirdness...!"
Dice, the tanuki picked dice. Sybil had been kicked out of casinos and nearly killed over her ability to predict dice. With an ever so slight movement of her long legs, her toe touched the bed frame. She poured over the disturbing details of that bed's past to find its future as fast as possible. The dice shook in the demihuman's hands. The first few fragments started to appear, but the piles upon piles of the past had to be filtered passed. "5,3,3," she said at just the last moment. A bead of sweat had just began to form on her forehead, obscured by hat, hair, and glasses.
She downed a large gulp of wine to regain her composure. Seemingly as cool as she was before. When her lips were freed from the glass, they formed a wide, confident grin. "Next. You will roll 2,3,3, followed by 2,4,6 and then 2,3,4." She drained the remainder of the drink, letting the dice prove her right three more times. When she finally finished, she spoke again before the tails showed.
"Do you really need to cheat on the fifth?"
"Ehh... it's not *cheating.*" Daichi argues. "A seer would know it came up something other then pips." Still, he seems sufficiently content with the explanation thus far. She might have some way of interfacing with the television he's unaware of, but... she never touched the dice, and she got it right each time. Perhaps not with casual effort, but it would explain how she divined his location and name. If there's people like her... that must mean the humans would have access to similar resources and spells... troublesome!! "But, helping you or not... are you just going to randomly find me each time? That sounds inconvenient! I'm not sure how you hope to communicate well. Or the specifics of the arrangement and my demands..."
And he asks just the perfect question. When there is all kinds of talk of communications and logistics, Sybil just gives a light clap. Goldie pulled out a small jewelry box. Opening the box, Sybil pulled a golden pedant, engraved with all kinds of superfluous circuits. She spoke again, presenting the object to be seen. "Much like the magic box, this device will serve as a one-way communication device. " She let the chain slide over her palm, to and froe. She pointed at what was a useless mimic of a power button "Press this, and simply speak. This will let me hear you no matter the distance, but you will not hear me." She neglected to mention this would apply even when he was not pressing it, but such things are details.
Sybil freed her left hand of the by returning it to Goldie. The broker folded her hands together, weaving the gold chain between her fingers. "Now, the specifics of the arrangement, why don't you start with telling me -Your- demands." She freed her index fingers and turned both hands just to point Daichi, to highlight the ending of the statement.
The pendant is eyeballed dubiously. Some kind of magic listening device...? Daichi is surprised that it's going to be offered so casually. "Mhm..." He'll find a nice, safe tree to store it in when he has no reason to try and talk to her... the tanuki is wary of any human gifts, let alone ones from a seer!
"Demands...? Uh..." Daichi's not seeming frontloaded with immediate temptations of any sort. "I need a better way to learn this world, like I said earlier." He reaches to pick up a stack of magazines and newspapers, to drop them across a bed. "This is too slow and scattered. And mostly stuff I don't care about. Nothing that describes... basics of... magic and... those weird things all over the place..." He seems at a loss to even try and describe what he's talking about.
"The machines? " Sybil gave a wide guess regarding the clear confusion the tanuki had in modern society "You can consider all such matters of modernity part of employee training. We can't have you sneak into a building when you don't know how the automatic doors work." She gave a jovial smile, considering such term a given.
When she shifted to the next topic, control seemed to return to her voice and face. "As for magic, that is a far more obscure subject. While I could gather such information in teachable form, it may be more efficient to point you to experts who might be trusted to learn directly. If you can pull information from them, both of us can profit at once. " She let a moment for Daichi to process what Sybil said, before cheerily concluded. "If these are acceptable, we can continue to the whole of the arrangement"
For the most part, the offer seems a bit generous. Daichi's more wary about that sort of thing then most humans might be... in his world, there is only trading favors or items, and there is binding power to even verbal agreements for many spirits. Outside magic and other such things, that only require consent... it makes his fur crawl! "I'm listening. And tentatively interested... but don't pretend this is all for my benefit! I'm not AGAINST working with a human, if I get something out of it! But that's all it'd be, for sure. Business! I don't want humans as friends or companions. Nuh uh!"
Sybil listened with rapt attention as the Tanuki seemed to try and hide his desire for the deal. When he finished his speaking, she began a light counter to his lack of desire. "A first free lessons, in this world do things we don't want to, but we do it because we need to. You need to learn about humans, and the only source for that comes from humans. " Returning to business, she began clarifying the terms.
The broker steepled her fingers, pedant hanging. "On the arrangement, I will seek out information to aid in determining the source of your realm's corruption. In exchange for this information, you will preform tasks for me where you use your skills to gather information that will be relayed to me until an equitable exchange of information has occurred. " Goldie began wiping down the glass of contamination. "Is that an acceptable deal?" Sybil finished.
"I'm here to do what I don't want to do, believe you me. Loafing in the sun and drinking sake at home's a hell of an upgrade! I'd not be talking with you right now if I wasn't gonna hear you out. I've no attachment to humans, or it's society... and that brings a lot of benefits, I imagine!" The transformed tanuki takes another long pull of his sake bottle. "I've nothing against the deal, in theory. But it's informal. While it's mutually convenient. You want something more concrete, you're going to have to make me trust you. You know a lot, and I don't know much. It's pretty stacked against me, wouldn't you say?"
Sybil leaned back in her money chair relaxed as she prepared to explain. "I'll give you some pieces. My last name is Katherine, I live in Metro, I am a big shot stock broker." She sprawled back her arms. "If you think I cheat you at any time, you can go to all those lovely humans and tell them all about how I am untrustworthy, then no one would want to do business with me."
Sybil's voice grew a slight frightful venom when she sat back up "If your worry is the overpaid Librarians, well.." From behind the seat Sybil formed, tendrils of money grew into sight. Undulating with serpentine menace. "If I worked for them, I wouldn't need such pleasantries to bring you in. "
The broker from Metro pushed herself back to a stand using the lengths of cash, and the bills flooded back into her pockets. Her heels dug into the carpet as she let her height tower over the demi-human. "So if you can trust me with that, I can give you your second free lesson." She put her hand out in front of him and spoke with an amicable tone.
"On earth we shake hands when we finalize a deal."
"Uh huh, uh huh..." Daichi agrees when provided the information. Right or wrong, he's no idea what to make of it. He's only glancing seen the term Metro in reference to some large city in another place, and assumes that she works with the random, nonsensical numbers of the 'stock market' that seems to often take up the papers with very tiny print. He's squinting towards the manifested money, but as yet appears unintimidated... not that it seems he's required much. The tanuki is apparently open to these ideas, at least on the surface.
This is the second time Sybil's thrust her hand at him, although he has some sense of what it means. He's seen humans do it before. Something formal and business-like, indeed. "I'm only a VISITOR on Earth." Daichi rejoinders, before holding up the sake he's got dangling from a strap. "I'm not interested in doing human ones. In the realm of Spirits, a tanuki shares a swig of sake to similarly share futures. If you want to start on a good foot..."
He then tips it back, taking a fierce mouthful. Before making a content sound of alcoholic satisfaction and twisting back the stopper, then lobs it underhand towards Sybil. "Take a drink!" What an exotic gourd! It's crafted in another realm, after all, even if beyond it's history there's not much special about it. "Now you can gimme your pendent, I guess. Don't feel too upset if I don't trust whatever magic's inside it, though... it's just for communicating, eh? Well, I'll check in with you using it now and then... until we exchange some favors successfully, you better bet I'm gonna be wary!"
This would suffice, Sybil thought to herself. The tanuki could think he had reasonable influence, while she could check for psychical poisons- And then it is tossed. The object was airborne and heading right for her. Where it was roughly going could be surmised, but she had to send out a grouping of tendrils from up her sleeve. In a great wide arc the bills spread out before clasping about the jug. "Bottoms up" she said cheekily, bringing the brew to her lips.
She poured through its past as she pour out it's contents. From the moment its owner entered this room, to when the satyr span it about the potter's wheel. It was all rushing over Sybil. Every moment Daichi had carried it, Sybil would be able to hear and feel to some extent. Nearly everything, it would be at Sybil's fingertips, or at the tip of her tongue at the least. The sake itself was more than accommodating to her palate, so much that she was chugging it. She drank. And drank. And drank.
She was born greedy and she would not be stopping now.
When the gourd was empty, it was finally allowed freedom from the woman's lips. "This sounds like a fine-*burp!*" She patted her chest to try to clear it of any further gasses she may have sucked down. "Excuse me, But that sounds like we have a deal." With a slightly less steady step, Sybil brought back the Tanuki's gourd, and haphazardly handed over the necklace. "Oh! She interjected. "Goldie, give him the bottle." As her assistant moved to gift the bottle, the broker herself held herself up on the couch by her arms, to playfully talk of the wine. "This was from the Earth year of 1990, that was a very good year for wines." She began a slight spin in her propted up place. "Oh, and it is from Bordeaux, very fancy, they got many nice awards." She sprung back up to full attention, realizing how hard the sake was already hitting her. With the sobriety pure willpower provides for but moments she made a recommendation. "Do try it."
The toss is mostly showboating; Daichi is obscenely accurate about things, and it would land in Sybil's lap and hands with ease. Not that utilizing her strange ability to control money isn't a far more interesting way of doing it, though. Certainly, it would be a new experience for the girl, although the tanuki cared little about that -- after the first drink leads into another, then another, then another, the transformed demihuman's eyes bug out.
"Oye, oye, oye!! That's SPIRIT sake! And that's the last I have, until I return back home!!" He sounds more annoyed then anything, waving his arms around as if that might somehow stop the girl from finishing, as he snatches back both gourd and pendant, trying to upend the last few drops sadly on his tongue. He's a few days until he reports home... maybe he'll have to bring more. It has a special purpose to him, after all. The souls of those in Earthrealm tend to... decay, after awhile... "Jeez..."
He takes the bottle of wine, looking at the label uncomprehendingly. Wine is a haughty thing of the elves, and he was never a fan of what passed for it in nearby villages. "Sure it is, sure, very fancy for humans, I bet. I'll try it later." Daichi grouches, setting it down to the side. "We done here, for the time...? I've things to do, and a human mentor to find!"
"Then we have a deal!" Sybil managed to not slur out with grand cheer. She Spring boarded herself back to a stand, and delicately span or stumbled from toe to heel. "You are real lucky I both found you first, and cared enough to come offer you help." She lowered like a jack knife and lifted her palm to her mouth's side as if to whisper, but loudly "I highly recommend finding a new location, there are spying eyes everywhere. "
Up righting herself and turning her back, she continued talking anyways, fiddling her thumbs. "I can send if some people or do some uh.. deaddrops. When the guy shows up, the passphrase will be... uh.. something? What was it?" She tapped the side of her head, trying to recall what she had just known a moment prior. "Have you invested in smoothies" Goldie reminded. Sybil snapped her fingers "yeah, the smoothies thing. Oh reminds me, can we swing by for smoothies on the drive over." The assistant's face grew confused and concerns, as she somewhat cautiously "uhhh, Sybil, ya till going there? You sound kinda well, oiled." The broker gave an enthused rebuttal "I planned to and I am very well going to do it. It was one jug of sock. Uh, sak, sak egh. The rice wine like stuff. And we are going to let our racoon be! Okay Goldie." The blonde gave a defeated "Yes." The broker playfully patted Goldie golden hair while waving. "Good girl, and bye Daichi, catch you latter."
The pair exited and haphazardly from the room and walked to their vehicle. Sybil's daughter, Tulip, had been under great emotional distress, so mommy was swinging by to give a surprise visit, just more liquored up than planned.
"Mhmm..." Daichi replies, tone still bitter. How can squished wines possibly compared to the best sake within quite a hike from his homeland?! He'll definitely try it later, but... he expects nothing. "Spying eyes even worse then a seer... good to know!!" He looks confused by the idea of dead drops and passphrases, bits of subterfuge he's not familiar with, but says nothing of it. What even IS a smoothie? He saw pictures of them in the paper. More booze, most likely. "I'm not a raccoon!!" he barks, quickly shutting the door and hopping on his bed. So there are people who can track him down...?! Will this headache never end? He stares a the pendant before stuffing it deep into his pouch. He'll hide it in a tree, like he planned, except when he has need of using it. Never trust a gift or the generosity of a mage, or so he was taught. A strong urge to drink comes over him, as he POOF!'s back into his tanuki form. "Augh... my sake... FINE!!"
He grabs the bottle of wine, and manages to gnaw off the tinfoil and cork enough for a swig. Immediately, his gaze brightens. THIS is what wine is supposed to be like...?! "Eheheh... those elves might've been on to something after all...!" For the next hour or two, the disruptive tanuki chugs and sings baudy songs of his homeland, before eventually falling off his bed passed out with the empty bottle rolling away, snoring deep and passed out until well into the next morning... maybe not all things in this world are bad, after all!
Log created on 16:41:26 06/16/2021 by Daichi, and last modified on 00:36:15 06/20/2021.