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Fantasy Tales of Tengoku (FULL)

Sub Genres
Action, Adventure, Magical, Supernatural

CatJones

Tap A to not die as fast.
Supporter
I'm going to have to drop out as well. Work's picking up for me and I won't even be in one place the next three months, so I can't guarantee I will be able to reply. Sorry about that. Good luck
 

darkborn

Member
So Yokai are eeeviiilll? Whyyy?? I want my Kitsune girl...

A-anyways... So, is there any lore-specific place for western peeps?
I keep on thinking the western world is going to be steampunk, for some reason... I know its probably not, but I can't help but think that for some reason...
 

StormWolf

Member
I am neither a GM or co-GM, so this is take/leave as you like, at least until the GM weighs in.

If a tengu/Kenku can be sold, it isn’t outside the realm of possibility that more “chaotic” entities are just that. Chaos. That can, in one light, be expressed as the raw, untamed force of creation and nature, which could be countered by the entropic forces of “the Devourer” and the order brought by civilization. All are part of the Great Wheel. Without one, everything falls apart. Which seems to be part of the overall driving plot.

As to the west, consider the established magic, and gamble with a magical twist on period parallels. How magic will impact trade and commerce, and how that in turn will change national development.
 

OSWonder

Currently Existing
Wanted to have my CS up like now but my OC's background is turning out to be a novella gg. Also @StormWolf do you mind if I mention the Akyoto clan in my sheet? As warriors sent by the Palace to exterminate a wild beast that's killed quite a few men.
 
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The Black Knight

Senior Member
So do I remove my CS for now or do I keep it there?
No. Leave it.

I can just do my cs here right?
Yes.

So Yokai are eeeviiilll? Whyyy?? I want my Kitsune girl...

A-anyways... So, is there any lore-specific place for western peeps?
I keep on thinking the western world is going to be steampunk, for some reason... I know its probably not, but I can't help but think that for some reason...
In some interpretations, kitsune are not youkai and servants of Inari. They are allowed. But this is a fictional world called Garden. All of it is fantasy asia. There are no western races or influences.
 

Crayons

Junior Member
So Yokai are eeeviiilll? Whyyy?? I want my Kitsune girl...

A-anyways... So, is there any lore-specific place for western peeps?
I keep on thinking the western world is going to be steampunk, for some reason... I know its probably not, but I can't help but think that for some reason...
Make the kitsune!
 

OSWonder

Currently Existing
Note: Items marked with * have further explanations of origin or limitations in the Extra page


requisite
appearance
personality
background
gear & weapons
abilities
extra
"he who travels in the shadow of falling snow"


name:
Yín [銀] || Luó Xuě Yǐng [羅雪影] of the Phantom Valley *

nickname:
Ying’Er

aliases:
Snow Lotus of Thousand Blossom Manor || The Silver Reaper

previous aliases:
Silent Smiling Blade, The Sixth Star of the Phantom Valley [Assumed Dead] || Wild Great Serpent of Jīngshu [Long Forgotten]

age:
18-21 [Apparent] || 464 [Real]

gender:
Mostly Male

race:
Bā Shé [巴蛇]; Magic Beast

role:
Renowned Entertainer/Courtesan || Strategist || Assassin

birthplace:
A Cold Cave, Somewhere Deep In A Forest, Jīngshu City

height:
180cm [6ft] - Human Form || 24m [78ft] - Snake Form**

weight:
143lbs [65kg] - Human Form || 7000lbs [3200kg] - Snake Form**

hair color:
Light Grey

eye color:
(Very Pale) Yellow

skin:
Glistening white scales often disguised as porcelain skin in most areas of his body. The scales show up sometimes in combat or when he is angered even while in human form.

physique:
Toned muscles packed into a lean body that looks deceptively willowy when covered under layered clothing.

written appearance:
Xuě Yǐng has two forms: that of a snake and that of a human. In the former, he takes the appearance of a giant serpent, mouth full of venom-dripping fangs and stretching long enough to cover the length of an entire street. While most of his kind are covered in pitch black or jade-like green, Xuě Yǐng has rare, pure white scales that led him to be hunted down many times over in his youth. As a result of men constantly trying to cut them off, there are many faint scars on his scales — that they haven’t healed despite his regenerative abilities are a testament to how deep the wounds were and the pain that he suffered during those years.

In human form, Xuě Yǐng has often been described as Hóngyán Huòshuǐ [红颜祸水]; a beauty to fall nations. He, himself, would like to agree. Narcissistic? Perhaps. But it is undeniable that, even for a magical creature, Xuě Yǐng has a striking appearance. Bright eyes that seem to see into your soul, a tall, sharp nose and petal-like lips — a combination of exactly what humans of his country favors on a face. With his slender structure and delicate features, it is not unusual for him to be mistaken for a woman, especially due to the nature of his workplace. To be fair to those who have, however, gender is not an important factor for Xuě Yǐng and he dislikes adhering to the traditional picture of how men dress and hold themselves. This is clear from how his long and silky silver hair is often left to fall freely around his shoulders, decorated with beads and pins to his liking as well as the powder and rogue he always wears in public... though the purpose of the makeup is so that nobody can exactly pinpoint his true appearance and Xuě Yǐng feels he looks far better without it. Though his looks generally pitch him in his late teens, the elegance and mystery with which he carries himself often makes people reconsider this.
personality:
Xuě Yǐng is a rather complicated soul. He is too old to be bright-eyed yet too young, by the standards of his kind, to be completely immune to being affected by emotions. The experiences throughout his life has hardened him, instilling in him the idea that mercy is dangerous. Yet, it was not until recent years that he became too quiet, too suspicious and far too apathetic — a sly and cold-blooded schemer true to the stereotypes of the snake-kind.

Before, though he was as heartless as an assassin should be, he was also naive. He admired the beauty of the world and the songs of the people as much as any young man, finding great pleasure in freedom. Though his sense of humor is rather dark and scathing, he doesn’t find enjoyment in the pain or shame of others and used to hold back his sharp tongue around people he felt would take offense to it. He had a relaxed warmth to him, much unlike one would expect from his frosty appearance. His smile was rare but it was genuine when it appeared, saved for the moments when he felt truly happy and free. In part, this was due to the influence of his only family, Song Yi, who was gentle and caring to him when he needed it most, providing him with one last hope for the world and the people in it.

That hope died with her. Now, he is seemingly left only with the part of him that is cunning and vicious. His strengths are his weaknesses, in that he is single-mindedly determined to get what he wants and intolerant of anything that might hinder him. He is unceasingly rational and cool-headed, relying on logic rather than emotion to get through life, yet sometimes he forgets that feelings are, in fact, a big factor in life. He is guarded and cautious of everyone around him, detaching himself from the world and locking himself in a fortress he will soon find is as tremendously difficult to escape from as it is to enter. He is always smiling, now, but it is clear to all who can see beyond that it is a painted smile. His sarcastic and cutting humor, however, is in even fuller a swing now than ever before.

Perhaps unexpectedly, he has a secret soft spot for the young, helpless and alone. Should he come across someone who fulfills all three criteria, he is unable to help himself from lending subtle aid to whom he considers one of very few humans that deserve kindness.
background:
Born in a dark and dreary cave, he was alone from the moment he hatched from his egg. No name, no family, nothing. Just him, the darkness and mice for food. He does not know how long he spent like that before he ventured outside his habitat into the forest outside. He didn’t even realize he was a magic beast until quite late after his first century.

Due to his lack of cultivation, he remained a relatively normal-sized snake and was a murky grey that nobody really paid attention to. He has already forgotten how but, at some point in those hazy couple centuries, he named himself Yín after a human word for the color of his scales. Though he didn’t know exactly what he was, the humans who came in contact with him did. As the people of the city he was born near regarded Bā Shé as sacred animals who served the god Haepi, hunting them was considered immoral and, hence, Yín was mostly treated well by the people he met. It was only when he discovered cultivating and began to grow that the problems began.

As Yín grew larger and more powerful, his dull scales revealed themselves to be a glittering white, a rare and gorgeous coloration. For collectors, hanging his skin on their wall would have been worth paying hundreds of thousands. And so came the poachers. One by one, they attacked him mercilessly, determined to tear off as much of him as they could. Cornered and terrified, Yín inevitably began to fight back, began to kill. He killed hunters, killed so-called defenders of justice that came to put him down, killed people that so much as accidentally stepped on his tail, becoming increasingly paranoid with each fight. He killed and killed until he gained a name for himself as a crazed beast. Eventually, he caused enough of a fuss that warriors of the famous Akyoto clan were sent by the Palace to get rid of him. It was one fight he had no way of winning and it forced him back fleeing into his cave, tattered and dying.

That was when he met Song Yi. A tiny human child, who wandered somehow through the labyrinth-like structure to end up where he lay. She brought him food and tended to his wounds, chattering on and on to him despite never receiving even one word back. She continued this for months. How she didn’t get caught and questioned, he didn’t know. She claimed it was because she was an orphan, someone nobody cared about. Without knowing it, he began to feel a sense of kinship with the weird little human.

Let’s become family, you and I. I’ll take you everywhere I go. She had claimed. He thought she must be crazy.

Sure, if you’ll carry me. Those were the first words he had said to her. It was only after she spent half a day trying to lift his already 20 feet long body that he accepted her sincerity. At that point, he had no human form and could only shrink himself. And, so, he followed her, a tiny snake in her pocket.

When Song Yi turned 13, she was picked up by recruiters from the Phantom Valley who recognized her martial talent. Yín, of course, went with her to the mountain where hundreds of children gathered to be trained. Phantom Valley was a mystical place, built on a giant spiral statue of a dragon. Rumors said that it was once a real dragon, a minor god that ruled the mountains under Haepi, but it angered the dark god and was turned into stone. Despite the menacing appearance of their residence, unlike many other Assassination Houses, Phantom Valley was more like an actual dojo and kept their training relatively humane. Even so, those without talent or good attitude were immediately thrown out of the sect, their memories of any martial art they learnt erased. Song Yi, however, was not one of those many.

As she grew, Yín grew with her, secretly learning Phantom Valley’s arts through her. He cultivated regularly, too, until he eventually gained a proper human form. It was then that the relationship between the two grew from a simple childhood friendship to something more complicated and, perhaps, romantic.

One day, Song Yi was called to meet her Master, the Lord of the Phantom Valley. It was a sudden call and, in her haste, she had brought Yín curled up in her bag along. Unsurprisingly, he was caught by the Lord right away. Though he was prepared to fight a battle he knew he couldn’t win, the Lord instead accepted him fairly easily. When the man saw his talent in the Valley’s martial art, he even went so far as to take Yín in as a disciple and give him a proper name: Xuě Yǐng.

To the other students of the Valley, he was known as the Master’s nephew, previously hidden away to be trained alone. His rank in the sect rose like a storm, quickly earning himself a spot in the coveted Seven Stars of Phantom Valley, the elite of the elite among the new generation. With that title, he was accepted into the Lord’s family, becoming known as Luó Xuě Yǐng of the Phantom Valley.

Song Yi, unfortunately, failed to rank among the Seven. Cracks appeared in their relationship, as she distanced herself from him and all her friends to immerse herself in training.

When Ichirou’s ascendance began, Xuě Yǐng argued with the Lord on which side they should join. He felt that it was inevitable for the dark god to win, now that he had such a powerful vessel. Though he knew that his race was meant to serve Haepi, he had never once seen or sensed the god himself and felt there was no need for loyalty to something that clearly cared not about him. Before they could even come to a decision, however, disaster struck.

Youkai attacked Phantom Valley. It should have been an easy victory, really. But with their newfound strength, the evil spirits corrupted and twisted the minds of many disciples, inciting them to betray the sect. Even Song Yi, his beautiful, brilliant, loving Song Yi, turned, raving and manic, raising her sword against the Seven Stars whom she wished so strongly to be a part of but couldn’t.

It was snowing that day. The scene of carnage was far too beautiful. Red on white. Crimson blood against pure snow, like a painting, a poem of passion destroying purity. And Xuě Yǐng stood in its midst, holding the hilt of a blood-stained sword. Impaled on it was the woman he loved and around him were the bodies of people he called brother. He had killed. Again. Because he had to; he always did. But he killed. People he had loved, he had slain to survive. He wondered if this was punishment; that for daring to think of betraying his god, he should be betrayed by those he cared about the most. It drove him mad. He tore into his own mind and body, quite literally, in a futile attempt to destroy himself and follow the souls of his dead friends.

Clearly, it didn’t work. While he lay unconscious and seemingly dead for a long time, the strength of his race was too high and he remained alive, despite a multitude of internal injuries. The death of his newfound family sowed two seeds in Xuě Yǐng. One, the seed of hatred for Ichirou and his evil forces. Two, a cold emptiness that replaced his heart, engraving cruelty and ruthlessness into his heart.

While he thirsted for revenge, he knew that it was impossible on his own. Thus Xuě Yǐng entered the Thousand Blossom Manor, a high-end courtesan house, as Yín, a musician and dancer to collect information while scheming in the shadows, searching for a sure way to strike down the dark god. His unprecedented popularity with the customers, however, was entirely unplanned and, in Xuě Yǐng's eyes, more than a little unfortunate. He moonlights occasionally as an assassin-for-hire, merely as a way to keep his skills sharp, thus earning himself the moniker of The Silver Reaper.
gear:
While in public as the entertainer, Yín, he wears mostly white traditional clothing, often with gold threads and embroidery. A relatively flamboyant look, one might say, despite his reputation for being cold as ice behind his fake cordiality. As himself, on the other hand, Xuě Yǐng adorns himself with far darker fashion. However, he dislikes tight clothing and wouldn’t be caught dead in the typical skin-tight suits of assassins, keeping to cloaks and loose pants to allow flexibility as well as leather vests and gloves for extra protection — very light ones, as his style means armor isn't particularly important in combat for him. He wears a metal mask to cover half of his face — while it does nothing much to hide his features, it works well with his martial art when confusing the enemy and leaving them unable to pinpoint exactly what he looks like.

weapons:
Fangs - Not his literal ones but rather a pair daggers shaped in the likeness of them, soaked in his venom for good measure. They are his favorite and most commonly used weapons. Often hidden away under the first layer of his clothing or tucked in his belt. ***

Dancer - Used to be Xuě Yǐng’s primary weapon. However, Dancer was a gift when he became the Sixth Star and is well-known as belonging to the Silent Smiling Blade of Phantom Valley. Hence, he is very careful about using it, in fear of his identity being found out.

Bladed Fan - Seemingly innocuous but tactfully equipped with thin, needle-like blades within. He rarely uses this and only keeps it in case of emergency attacks while in his courtesan persona. Thus far, this has not happened.
magic:
Typical Traits of a Bā Shé- As most magic beasts do, Xuě Yǐng has a natural predator’s instincts, heightened senses and increased regeneration. His scales are tough as steel and require either superhuman strength or strong martial arts to cut through. He is immune to all natural poisons and possesses poison of his own, widely considered to be one of the most lethal venoms in the world, which is secreted through his fangs.****

Shape-Shifting - Between his snake and human form. This takes way too long to complete fully and leaves him mostly defenseless while it occurs. Hence, the transformation is never done in the middle of battle, except when he covers parts of his human body with his scales as a defensive tactic. Contrary to the usual abhorrence of magic beasts toward human skins, Xuě Yǐng instead finds his exorbitantly huge snake body cumbersome and almost never uses it. He does, however, shift into a shrunken version of his snake form (about 7 inches long) when he needs to fit into somewhere small or spy on someone — note that this small form is extraordinarily useless in combat.

Snake Eyes - As one of the very rare few of his kind to ever really interact with humans, Xuě Yǐng has had the chance to refine the hypnotic trait of his gaze from its natural use in capturing prey to a stronger form. He can stun enemies and instill fear in them with a glance, allowing him the opportunity to attack, though the effectiveness differs depending on the willpower and mental strength of his opponent.

fighting style:
Huàn Yǐng Dǎo [幻影蹈] - The Phantom Dance, a school of martial arts once feared throughout the lands, used by the ghostly assassins of Phantom Valley. It is said that those who had perfected this art were able to walk through large crowds without being seen by a single soul and slice dozens of necks in the blink of an eye. After the death of his master and the dissolution of Phantom Valley, Xuě Yǐng remains one of the only vessels to preserve the great art in its full form. However, his version of the art differ greatly from the original and incorporates his own edits and ideas — it could be said that his Phantom Dance has already become a branch made to suit fighters like himself, rather than the true style. While he can use the original style, it no longer comes naturally to him.

martial arts:
Shadow in the Mist - A breathing technique that draws on forces of air to create a thin layer of mist that wraps tightly around its user, allowing them to move without being detected/while being extremely hard to detect. Someone using Shadow in the Mist to walk through a crowd will likely be perceived as an odd, cold gust of wind passing by. Even when detected, which is possible by other martial artists or inhuman creatures with hypersensitivity, the user’s face and figure will appear blurred and difficult to recognize.

Melodic Steps- A movement art that strongly emphasizes on agility and takes inspiration from traditional dance and acrobatics. While it is excellent for use in any battle, its power is best displayed when used against multiple enemies.

Whistling Blade - Named as such due to the similarity between the sound of blades cutting through air when moving at high speeds to an eerie yet oddly cheerful whistling tone. The technique involves flowing yet rapid moves and teaches the user how to meticulously arrange series of feints, swings and strikes in short time-spans. It is often combined with Melodic Steps to create an exceedingly smooth and efficient fighting style. To the untrained eye, the combination is like an elegant and gentle dance. To the keen observer, it is a lethal and ruthless combat technique.

Ki Cultivation [Lower-Advanced Tier] - His immortality, combined with his inborn talent for this art, made him a monster in terms of Ki among martial artists. The nature of his Ki is akin to ice, so cold that it burns those who come in contact with it. He can infuse this Ki into his strikes (which will strengthen them) or release it in blasts which feel like a gust of bone-chilling wind but with enough force to blow your average grown man away by a few feet. Those who are hit by this blast will, at worst, suffer internal injuries from their blood being momentarily frozen. At best, they will suffer fairly nasty frostbite wounds on their skin. Once upon a time, Xuě Yǐng had enough inner Ki to win battles against a dozen martial artists using only that and his fists, without any other technique. After he nearly destroyed himself, however, the internal injuries has left him with only a fraction of his previous Ki cultivation. It is now barely enough to be considered advanced by human standards and, if pushed beyond that limit, brings about serious physical damage to Xuě Yǐng as an after-effect.

[Note: Due to his race and cultivation thus far, Xuě Yǐng can only learn arts that originate from the forces of Water or Air. Regardless of how hard he tries in other elemental-based arts, he will not be able to go past the most basic level in them.]
*Luó Xuě Yǐng is the official given name of his human persona, gifted by his Master when he joined the Phantom Valley. Thinking this way, although he no longer considers it as such, Yín is his true name.

**Bā Shé were mythical snakes big enough to swallow elephants whole and occupy entire mountains as its sleeping space so 24m is considering that Xuě Yǐng is a young adult for his race. The weight was calculated with the same rate (kg per m) as an anaconda. Apparently that's over 300kg per meter, who woulda thought?

***Fangs : https://i.pinimg.com/564x/d3/8f/34/d38f34f75a00ff662552dbb6ff92f202.jpg

****The capabilities described here only apply to his snake form. He only retains the passive traits in human form and they are significantly reduced.


code by Ri.a
 
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The Black Knight

Senior Member
@OSWonder Overall, I love it. I like how you immersed yourself in the story and developed the your own character's story. This CS is 100% approved, however, there are some things I want you to revise:

The venom I want to restrict to his fangs like actual snakes. Having it seep through his skin and as a gas from his mouth is not natural to snakes.

Shadow in the Mist - You need to be more specific. Is a mist being created to hide the person? Because air is transparent.

Melodic Steps is smashed into the same paragraph as Shadow in the Mist. Did you mean to separate it?

Whistling Blade- so the blade makes a sound. What actually happens? You're not explaining what this technique does. Is making a sound all it does? Because in Melodic Steps you already explained how his fighting is like a dance.

Ki Cultivation - When you say he releases it in blasts do you mean ice blasts? Also, what does the icy strikes do when they hit a foe?
 

OSWonder

Currently Existing
@The Black Knight Edited them! Thanks for the notes and sorry for the general vagueness with the martial techniques. I imagined them in my head but had no idea how exactly to describe them >< Also, about the Whistling Blade, the whistle is just an effect created from how fast the sword moves. Normally, you wouldn't hear it at all or only vaguely but with this technique, once you perfect it, the whistle can be clearly heard, hence the name. Basically, it's just a bunch of moves that emphasize on speed haha That's why it's specially intended to be combined with the agility & flow (??) Melodic Steps provides, to create a style that's (ideally) as methodical and accurate as a dance. Hope that makes sense at all.
 

The Black Knight

Senior Member
I read what you are typing but...it just seems like you're sacrificing a technique slot for aesthetics rather than an actual move? If it increases the speed at which his sword strikes move, then that would be a technique. If it makes something sparkle, I feel like you would be short-changing yourself. In this case, instead of sparkle, make a sound that doesn't really do anything.
 

The Black Knight

Senior Member
@OSWonder This description you JUST wrote is way better than what you had originally:

Whistling Blade - Named as such due to the similarity between the sound of blades cutting through air when moving at high speeds to an eerie yet oddly cheerful whistling tone. The technique involves flowing yet rapid moves and teaches the user how to meticulously arrange series of feints, swings and strikes in short time-spans. It is often combined with Melodic Steps to create an exceedingly smooth and efficient fighting style. To the untrained eye, the combination is like an elegant and gentle dance. To the keen observer, it is a lethal and ruthless combat technique.
 

The Black Knight

Senior Member
@Gunnhilder Yes. But understand CS approval is subjective. It has nothing to do with whether you are a good writer or not. It is everything to do with the story you present me.
 

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