Currently the scene is: Temple in Nola and it is Night ( Sneaky Man is Sneaky (Set by: sapph) )
<Bai> and Nishi were moving around the Temple proper area, closing up the building for the night, since they hadn’t gotten requests to stay open later. The two worked mostly in silence to chase down stray fallen leaves and close doors and windows.
<Ashe> arrives at the temple shortly after sunset. He was fortunate that there were not that many new Shinto Temples in New Orleans – one in fact – and he was able to pin down the location easily enough. He was wearing an unassuming outfit, just black jeans with a Navy t-shirt that was snug enough to show off his fit form and a light jacket to help cut the wind. His long black hair was tied back in a loose tail at the base of his neck and all things
considered, this man of Japanese ancestry did not look that traditional. Not considering what Ashe normally would have worn if he’d planned on presenting his gift properly. Instead he simply planned to tuck it out of the way for the monks to find and had written a note in Japanese and English to explain what the long wooden box contained. It was a deceptively simple box that was made out of unfinished ash wood and constructed without the use of
nails. Inside, resting on a bed of black silk over fresh straw was the sword he’d crafted for the temple. It’s decoration was mostly white, but there was find and delicate silver and gold accents the painted a scene of mountain mists to match the style he’d used for the tempering line of the blade itself. He approached the temple with the case under one arm, trying to be silent enough not to draw attention and poked his head inside the main doorway
before ‘stealthily’ attempting to slip the box inside and to the side. The downside of this plan? Ashe was not a stealthy man.
<Nishi> intones a greeting – the old japanese greeting that monks gave people visiting temples. The other monk -looks- older than Bai, even though he’s a lot younger. And, ironically, he has features that the Japanese tended to think of as fox features, oval face, long nose, and narrow slightly curved eyes. He’s dressed as Bai usually is, in the off-white shinto robes, though the cut of
his robe is shorter and gives way to full slacks. Nishi is standing far enough away not to acidentally get hit by said large box, but close enough that the politely curious expression is clear in the dim light.
<Ashe> blinks once and his storm grey eyes turn towards Nishi with the look of a child who’s just been caught with his hand in the cookie jar. Ashe had grown up with his grandfather so he at least issued the proper reply to the greeting, but despite his fluent speech in Japanese, there is a clear American accent to it and Ashe switches back to English, “I’m sorry. I saw this left outside and I thought it might get damaged if it rained. I didn’t mean
to disturb you.” Ashe… was not a good liar either.
<Nishi> hums and tilts his head a little. Bai was behind the temple, not necessarily being quiet as he closed the doors and lined up the wood that braced them closed. “We clean here first.” Nishi does have an accent, the unfortunately difficult sentence filled with Ws Rs and Ls that are too soft so that it sounded more like ‘ue cuin hea faastu’ The statement is said mildly, as if he
isn’t contesting Ashe’s lie. He steps forwards then and considers the box. Black eyes turn back to Ashe and Nishi just sort of waits – either for Ashe to fess up or to hand the box over. Since Ashe isn’t frothing at the mouth nishi doesn’t worry tooo much about him being a zombie (but then he hadn’t heard about the vomiting thing yet).
<Ashe> can only smile fondly at the accent. He had no trouble understanding Nishi since his grandfather and mother had both spoken in much the same way. A calloused hand was run over his black hair as Ashe chuckled lightly, “Right, of course you did. I’m sorry, I wished to make a donation to the temple in my Grandfather’s memory, but I didn’t know if it would be accepted. It was shameful of me to lie to you.” And a dishonor to Ashe’s grandfather,
despite the man’s good intentions. Ashe bowed his head, “Forgive me, please.”
<Nishi> stares a moment longer, then will bow and step closer. “lack of knowing not shame, lack of heart is.” If Ashe allows, he’ll take the box, and gives the note a curious glance. The monk’s hands will pet the wood in reverent appreciation, and with a small smile he’ll look inside. He’ll stare a moment, stoic expression turning to quiet awe. It takes the monk a moment before he
can snap his attention back to Ashe. “You -give-?” His tone is a bit incredulous, as he’d not expected anyone in america to be devout or kind enough to offer such at the temple.
<Ashe> was relieved by the kind words and understanding. He didn’t really know how to make a ‘proper’ donation and what he’d brought wouldn’t exactly fit in a donation box. He had gone with his grandfather to a couple of temples, but he’d been young and it wasn’t his interest at the time. He knew enough that westerners might mistake him for following a shinto-like religion, but not enough for him to say that he did. His own hands are gentle on the
wood as he sets it down for Nishi to examine. The mark burned into the lid of the case wasn’t Ashe’s, but his grandfathers and Ashe held a nervous breath when the monk opened the case. Ashe finally exhaled at the question, nervous, but to try and explain he switched to Japanese for the monk, “<Japanese> If you will accept it, yes. My grandfather followed this faith and when I heard that these were sometimes used in ceremonies, I crafted one in his
style, the style he passed down to me through his teachings.” Ashe followed up with a hasty, “<Japanese> I understand if you already have another…”
<Nishi> smiles broadly and looks up. <Japanese> “No. We consecrate the blades to a temple, and they are not meant to travel. I think commissioning a sword is on Bai’s 5-year plan, but recent events have drawn his attention. A blade is used as focus for many ceremonies and purifications. I am humbled and honored you would think of us. ” He reaches out to lightly touch the saya, excited
enough that he can’t just totally act indifferent, especially since he knows enough to see it was finely crafted. But politeness has him pulling back, <Japanese> “It is beautiful but will such a gift cause you hardship?”
<bai> wanders over just then and he grins at the sight of Ashe. The box gets his curiousity and he leans on Nishi’s shoulder as he bends down to look in the box too. He whistles appreciatively.
<Ashe> smiles as he picks up on the monks appreciation of the blade, “<Japanese> My Grandfathers name was Sadamune Haru and the blade was crafted in the Soshu style with traditional equipment and materials.” He didn’t know if Nishi knew much about the history of crafting katana, but Ashe didn’t want them to think he might have cut corners as an American, though it would be apparent if he did once the blade itself was viewed, “<Japanese> I gave it
life on the night of Samhain as the morning light crested the fiends outside my forge and it is named Konjiki no Yoake – to symbolize new beginnings and the bringing of light to the darkness.” He shook his head slowly then, “<Japanese> No, it will cause no hardship that I am not willing to bare. I am not as successful as my grandfather was, but I do well enough.” Then he laughed and shrugged his shoulders in good natured humour, “Odd that few people
trust a japanese sword made by a man with an American name, Ashton Blake.” He took light of it, but it was true. Then he grinned to Bai in greeting, “Henry, huh?”
<nishi> knits his brows when the conversation turns back to english, partially because he had no idea why the name would matter. Having done his duty in offereing Ashe an opportunity to back out of offering the blade, he’ll ease the blade free from the box and cling to it – quietly gleeful and excited as he studies the work on it more.
<Bai> gives Ashe a broad grin, “Yes, well. I -could- chase you, but I think I do not want to deal with your mate.”
<Ashe> grins with a warm expression and motions with a finger, “<Japanese> You should look at the blade, the rest is just dressing… but I’m not telling you how I did it.” He leaves that little tease for Nishi to look at the masterfully polished and sharpened blade to see the pattern of the hamon line left from when the blade was tempered. The effect like rolling mist on the steel, but he imagined that the monk would have little trouble picking
out the subtle likenesses of the two foxes near the guard that were hiding in the pattern. He hadn’t used magic for it, simply skillful application of the ash and clay paint that gave the pattern. Ashe grimaced and shook his head playfully, “I will never need to worry about people hitting on me again. I suppose it is a good thing.”
<Bai> stops leaning on Nishi… mostly because Nishi has a sword in hand and Bai’s not 100% sure Nishi wouldnt at least hit him with it. He snorts at Ashe, “I can have a lot of fun in a three plus, as long as Henry’s comfortable. Buut, i don’t think Maryska likes me that much, and I’m pretty sure Henry doesn’t swing straight at -all-” Bai shrugs. Nishi, however is focused on
the blade, which he has bared at Ashe’s urging. He stares at the decorative work for a moment, then finally tilts his head and looks between the pair of them before finally speaking up. “So.. you know?” Nishi motions towards the foxes on the blade
<Ashe> had noted that Henry was more confident and attributed some of that to Bai as he nodded, “You never know.” He meant about Henry since he had never asked, “But I can safely say that Maryska doesn’t share well and since she’d pregnant with our child… I really don’t want to upset her. I don’t mind the mood swings, but… It’s better to have a quiet home.” He winks and then sobers to nod to Nishi, “I know, my mate is similar.” He nodded to Bai,
not sure how much the man knew.
<Nishi> squints a little at the vague reply. Bai pats Nishi’s shoulder and nods.
<Bai> turns to Ashe, “He’s human, sensative enough to energies that he may start making real wards. He knows what I am, though, and I keep him appraised of the dangers nearby.”
<Ashe> nods his head and gives Nishi a warm smile, “<Japanese> I’m what is called a mage, mostly human, but a step beyond just making wards. My… tradition or faith is similar to what you study here as a monk. I try to live my life simply and I don’t use magic lightly. Only if something can’t be done another way.” He nods to the sword, “<Japanese> Like the sword – It was all made traditionally, but it will never dull, break, or rust.”