Cliched 9

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Cliched 9

Postby LawOhki » Wed Aug 17, 2011 9:20 am

Ranma slowly opened her eyes as a sunbeam moved across her face. Blinking several times, she noticed immediately that few parts of her didn’t hurt. Her ribs felt like they were broken and her left arm was restrained by something hard. Rolling her head to the side, she looked out the window, and saw that it was a cloudless day. ‘Guess I’m alive.’ Honestly she was a little surprised. Lifting her head up enough to look around she saw only a generic room. Aside from the bed, there was a small table with several drawers, and on top of that was a metal tray containing some medical supplies and a pitcher of water.

Attempting to sit up was a mistake and she hastily dropped back down on the bed. “Hey.” She called out, trying to reach someone out the open door. Her voice coming out in a dry whisper. “Anybody there?” She tried again with more force. From outside the room she heard a chair slide across the floor and a moment later an older woman dressed in a white nurse’s outfit entered the room.

“You’re up.” The gray haired woman noticed happily. Bustling over to the side of the bed and giving her a quick visual exam. “How are you feeling?”

“Not well.” She answered briefly, considering it equivalent to the beating she took once from a troll.

“You’re going to be fine.” The nurse patted her gently on the shoulder. “You have been asleep for two days now.”

“Where’s Kasumi?”

“Your friend left just an hour ago. Poor dear has been at your side most of the time.” Heading over to the table, the nurse poured her a cup of water.

“Thanks.” Ranma had been just about to ask for something to drink. Gritting her teeth, she forcibly hauled herself up to a sitting position. The blanket that had been covering her fell away revealing a generic white gown and that her left arm was covered by a cast at a ninety degree angle.

“Easy.” The woman quickly supported Ranma’s back before tying a piece of fabric around her neck and arm to form a sling. “Dr. Nuara said that you have several bruised ribs and your left arm is fractured in several places. He was able to heal your wings and your broken ribs but it can be difficult with tieflings.”

“What about Kasumi?” She was thankful that her wings had been healed, realizing that with how much they moved, she would be in constant pain. Ranma tried to give them a stretch but the action quickly aggravated her ribs so she stopped.

“She’s fine, only some minor bruising now. You’re both very lucky that you were inside the protective zone. Those horrible dead would have been waiting otherwise.”

Since Ranma wasn’t having the easiest time sitting up without help, the woman quickly moved over to the table, and pulled out an extra pillow to help prop her up. Ranma would never admit it but she was grateful for it, just sitting was proving to be very difficult. ‘Of course, I have wings, and it’s a fall that nearly does me in.’

“I’m going to go send for the doctor.”

“Alright.” Ranma nodded and watched the woman go. Alone, she had nothing to do but sit and notice the constant ache that would be plaguing her while she healed. Looking out the window again, she could see some of the city. Constructed from heavy stone and painted white, it reflected sunlight to appear even brighter.

‘I made it, now what?’ Ranma realized that she had not exactly planned past getting to this place. There was the magical academy here that would have to be the first stop after she secured lodging. Kasumi seemed to have that in hand if she had been here for two days.

She dropped her gaze to her lap, realizing that she didn’t even know when the next airship off the island would come. This may have been how she traveled with Genma but after inadvertently shifting her wings, she was reminded that she wasn’t human at the moment. She would just have to make herself appear to be which would allow her to find a job easily.

Growing bored with waiting and feeling weak from her forced slumber, Ranma carefully swung her legs out from the covers, and tried to stand up. Wavering on her hooves, her head spun, and she braced herself against the wall with her right arm. “I’m going to have to kick the necromancer’s ass for this.” She grimaced as speaking aggravated her ribs.

“Get back in bed.” A male voice commanded and Ranma was startled out of her thoughts enough to nearly fall over. Storming into the room was a short man with graying hair wearing a long white coat. “I hate treating infernals, every last one of you thinks you’re unbreakable, and you can just walk out after a little rest.” The man ranted and nearly shoved her back on to the bed. Before she could protest, he was pulling back her eyelids to inspect each of her eyes before feeling around at the back of her head.

“What gives?” She pushed his hands away.

“What gives?” He asked sarcastically, moving rapidly over to the table, and fretting with his hands over the various things on it before coming back to stand in front of her. “Two days ago I had to spend seven hours healing you away from the brink of death so if I say sit you should ask how long?”

‘I couldn’t have been that bad.’ Ranma thought sourly.

“Yes you were that bad.” The doctor seemed to read her mind and reached out a hand to poke at her ribs. Ranma immediately doubled over in pain. “To start, six of these weren’t broken when you came in.”

‘Bastard!’ Ranma cursed to herself, unable to unclench her jaw.

“If it wasn’t for Lord Favian I wouldn’t have even bothered. But no, he has some kind of interest in you. So live you shall.”

‘I don’t know any Favian.’ She didn’t feel like talking to the doctor, who went about prodding her left arm without a care to its broken status.

“Yes yes, you appear to be healing nicely, all that work won’t go to waste. Two weeks at most and it’ll be impossible to tell you were injured.” Straightening up the man seemed very pleased with himself. “Of course you have me to thank for that. Even with your infernal constitution hindering my direct healing spells.”

“Gee thanks.” Ranma would have been thankful if the guy didn’t rub her the wrong way.

“Now be a good little infernal and stay in bed or I will have you strapped to it.” He proclaimed and practically patted her on the head before storming back out of the room.

“I’ll get out of bed if I want to.” Ranma said haughtily and stood up just to show that. Unfortunately she ended up falling flat on her face as her exercised starved legs failed to hold her up. “Ouch.” She moaned.

X x x x x x

Kasumi sipped at her tea briefly before setting the cup down and looking out over the city from her seat on a balcony. Lutansk itself was such a beautiful city that she was deeply saddened by the threat it was under. Rolling plains surrounded the city leading into two different mountain ranges at the North East and South West sides. The Northern were dark and foreboding with several active volcanoes belching smoke up into the sky. To the South was the former home of the Phoenix, a race of avian humanoids who had recently been overtaken and all but wiped out by the undead.

“I don’t know how I can thank you, Lord Favian. If it wasn’t for you--.” She looked down at the fancy pastry on her plate and sighed. Kasumi was still shaken up over the events on the airship. It had been a miracle that only six had been lost in the attack. Most passengers had taken refuge within the cargo hold while Kasumi had panicked. The back two neutral stones had been enough to keep the ship from crashing to the ground.

“Nonsense.” The older man’s strange orange eyes twinkled with good natured amusement. “Your friend is a-- hero. Seeing that she and her friends get taken care of is only right.”

“Still-- I feel indebted to you in a way that I fear I can never repay.” Since being found near the crash with Ranma crushed and broken beneath her body, Favian had ensured that Ranma was not simply left for dead and that Kasumi had wanted for nothing.

Pepa had awoken shortly after being moved to the hospital and Kasumi was just as worried about the spell creature. The fairy had said nothing, choosing to stare intently at any object that caught her eye for hours at a time. But she seemed to be in good condition physically and was even eating and sleeping now.

“Then it is a good thing I will not ask for it.” He turned to a servant who crouched down to whisper in his ear. “It seems your friend is awake.”

X x x x x x

Favian scratched at his chin and allowed the two tieflings to be reunited. Kasumi was asking Ranma questions about her condition and the small red head was trying to play off nearly dying as an everyday occurrence. He remembered his visitor from several nights ago, and had discretely searched her for any magical spells. The results of the search were that this girl had encountered some powerful magic before arriving in Lutansk.

The first was an absurdly powerful protection spell that would resist any magic used to change the girl’s physical form. This contrasted with the shape changing magic that had been all but dissolved by the protection spell. The one he was concerned about was a nasty piece of work that he had removed as soon as possible. It wasn’t a mind control spell per se but it would eventually break down the victim by depriving them of sleep and assaulting their mind with terrifying visions.

He remembered the figure telling him that the girl had a problem mortal magic could not solve but he saw nothing mortal, divine, or infernal magic would need to fix. Especially with the powerful divine protection spell in place. ‘Dark figures who appear in the middle of the night should learn to be more specific.’ He simmered but kept himself from showing his anger outwardly.

“Sorry to interrupt.” He broke into their reunion before Kasumi could say anything about what had happened after Ranma had been injured.

“Oh-- I’m sorry.” Kasumi quickly moved to the side from her position on the bed so Ranma could see him better. “This is Lord Favian.”

“I’m an instructor here at the magical academy.” He inclined his head slightly towards the girl. “How are you feeling?”

“Like I got into a fight with a troll-- again.” The girl answered. “The doctor said you’re the one who had him fix me.”

“And I’ve secured a room for you two to stay at the academy.” Favian was amused by the surprised looks on both of their faces. Kasumi had been staying in a nearby inn and he had debated on whether it was a good idea to take her as a student as well.

“You what?” Ranma asked incredulously.

“That is why you’re here isn’t it?” He looked between them.

“No, I’m under a curse.” The red head answered.

“And you?” He looked to Kasumi.

“Well-- I originally just wanted to be able to talk to teachers here who knew my mother. But I would be honored to receive any instruction you would be willing to give.”

“I see.” These two were certainly different than the usual travelers to Lutansk. “What is your curse?” Ranma stiffened in response to his question and glanced nervously at Kasumi. “If you mean that shape changing one girl then you don’t need to worry about that much longer.”

“That’s my curse, I’m not a girl, or a tiefling. I’m a guy.” She finally answered. “Although my mom is a Succubus so I am plane touched but I never knew it until I met her a while ago.”

“Really?” His interest in this girl was definitely piqued now. “Tell me how this came about.”

X x x x x x

Ranma stared forward blankly and barely noticed the world around her. A few words from Favian had utterly decimated her optimism for finding a way back. She had explained how it had happened and he had flat out told her it was impossible to break the protection spell. Obviously the man couldn’t know everything but to be told without any reservations that it was impossible to find a cure with mortal magic had hit her hard. Even though she was still battered and bruised, she had walked out of the hospital to wander the city.

She had spent all day visiting every temple she could find, begging and pleading for one of them to help her. Nothing she had ever done could possibly deserve this kind of punishment. If the divine were so great why did they remain silent? Why did one of their own do this?

It was getting late and night had fallen some time ago, but she had no clue how to return to the hospital. So she just sat alone on a wooden bench seat, in a small temple, and occasionally trying to communicate with the deity it was dedicated to. There was no response, the God known as Razu remaining silent to her pleas.

“Excuse me, but I’m closing up now.” A gentle voice drew her attention and she found an older man wearing a simple gray robe snuffing out the candles lighting the room.

“Could I-- just sit here a little while longer?” She asked, not wanting to go face Kasumi and be pitied.

“Problems?” He asked and his eyes widened when he finally took a good look at her. “Oh-- I’m sorry, I just wasn’t expecting a tiefling to be here. Especially not in Lutansk.”

“Is that a problem?” Ranma half expected a yes answer to that question. Part infernal? Get out and go back to whatever hole you crawled out of fiend.

“A house of Razu does not turn away visitors.” The man answered and took a seat a respectable distance away. “I imagine that there is a reason for you being here.” He paused, his eyes going down to her arm held in a sling. “Word spreads quickly, you must be the one who helped defend the airship. I do not think you traveled all this way just to visit this humble temple.”

“Does your God ever talk to you?” She asked.

“Not with words. But I can feel his presence when I am doing something good.”

“I don’t feel anything here.” Ranma’s eyes went down to her lap.

“Not everyone does. Is this your first time seeking advice from the Gods?”

“Yes.” There had never been a reason for her to as a human and even less of one after becoming a tiefling. Finding out that there was no hope to be had in mortal magic was as good as reason as any to seek divine help.

“I’ve lived in this city for a long time. When the dead first started attacking there was a sudden influx of people seeking guidance and comfort. Far too many forced themselves to find what they were looking for, to justify whatever they wished.”

‘That’s not helpful at all. These are the guys I have to find the answers from.’ Ranma simmered, angry over the inability to find a quick response. “Is there a way to be more direct?”

“No one here works with such things. If your prayers are to be answered then you need to be willing to listen. Shouting, screaming, and demanding attention is the surest way to get only the answer you want.”

She didn’t pursue that line of questioning further, deciding that she would have to look for worshipers of other Gods and see if they knew of a way. Ranma remembered how Kuno always talked as if his Goddess actually spoke to him but then again, Kuno wasn’t completely right in the head.

“Maybe I could be of some help? What is it that brings you to Lutansk?” The man asked helpfully.

“A fool’s errand.” She answered before standing up and wincing as her bruised ribs protested the movement. “I should be going, sorry I kept you.”

“No need to apologize. Have a nice evening young lady and I hope you find what you’re looking for.”

X x x x x x

Stepping out from a back chamber, the caretaker for Razu’s temple paused and looked around at the candles that he had just been coming to extinguish. “Well that is odd.” Shrugging, he went to make sure the temple was locked up for the night.
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Re: Cliched 9

Postby frice2000 » Wed Aug 17, 2011 10:16 am

Those horrible dead

Minor point really but isn't it, 'undead' or simply just 'monsters'? I guess dead works, just don't think I've ever heard it referred to that way.

Pepa had awoken shortly after being moved to the hospital

How'd she get out of the room? She went and retrieved her off the airship? Someone brought her her goods from the room?

had removed as soon as possible

Oh...I thought that was needed to remove but it's had removed. Sounds awkward with the as soon as possible line attached since that makes it sound like he hasn't removed it yet.

“Like I got into a fight with a troll-

Hmm...I don't know but here considering what you've said about succubi and how even their tieflings don't seem to be 'fighters' could have him surprised that she's so physical which could lead nicely in to Ranma explaining he was human.

“No, I’m under a curse.”

Good time here for him to say he removed the mind warping curse. Making sure that is explained and knowledge to them. Seems a logical thing for him to assume she's talking about.

surest way to get only the answer you want.”

Oh I see what you're trying to say here now. Think it could be said a little better, but it makes sense nice line.

the caretaker for Razu’s temple

Very nice. Would say the previous caretaker needs to give some sort of enigmatic more deep answer or saying something stirring in saying goodbye to Ranma but I really like this bit.
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Re: Cliched 9

Postby LawOhki » Sun Aug 21, 2011 1:01 am

Shivering from the cold, Ranma didn’t resist when the man who had crushed her hopes draped a white fur cloak over her shoulders. Her wings were trapped inside and it aggravated her ribs but the escape from the cold was worth the discomfort. The cloak must have been enchanted because as soon as it was in place she felt like she was sitting next to a pleasant fire. “Thanks.”

“First lesson, dress appropriately.” Favian joked.

“You come to laugh at the sex changed freak?” She asked and wavered on her hooves, unable to stay balanced.

“I will mock and I will torment you for any mistakes that you make, big or small. But I will not do so because you were-- violated by a God.” He explained, venom entering his voice near the end.

“Thanks.” She repeated, feeling like a heel once again for judging someone. “Why do you want to teach me anyways?”

“Because unless you get that God to change you back you’re going to become very powerful and be targeted by entities who will use you for their own ends. So at the very least I will make sure you learn how to resist binding magic.”

Ranma wanted to protest that such a thing would never happen to her but there was Ryoga. All it took for him to make her powerless was a couple bits of metal. There was that tracking enchantment that would have caused extreme problems if it hadn’t been removed. Maybe she had just not thought about the possibility of it happening to her because she could change back into a human with Jusenkyo. But with that gone, she really was vulnerable to becoming bound to someone.

“Are the ones that attacked the ship being controlled?” She asked, uncomfortable with the thought of killing them if they were not able to stop their actions.

“Them? No. Those are the children of Ladon, the dragon attempting to take this city. You had the joy of meeting Raxus, and the one you killed, Lethanial. Which only leaves four others and every last one of them is as monstrous as their father.”

“Guess I won’t feel bad if I have to kill any more of them then.” Ranma guessed that she had only killed one since Favian felt the need to point that out.

“Pity them because they never had a chance to be anything else. But that doesn’t mean the world isn’t better off without them.” Favian nodded to a man as they walked back towards the center of the city.

“Master Favian, I was sent to find you.” The man bowed his head respectfully and gave her a quick glance. “Master Varis wishes to speak with you in the council chambers.”

“Tell him that I’ll be there as soon as I’ve escorted my new student to her quarters.” Favian answered and the man bowed again before hurrying off to perform his task.

“You mentioned that earlier, is it like an apartment?” She asked.

The quarters did not turn out to be an apartment. In the center of the city there was a tiered layer that started at the highest level of the buildings surrounding it and encircled the barrier tower. To get there they had taken an elevator with a guard controlling it. Around the outside of the tier were buildings of various sizes all lit up brightly from the magical lanterns that lined the city. Inside of this ring was a sparse forest hidden from the outside that obscured by bottom of the central tower. Ranma could hear running water and

“This is known as the park and it sits directly above the ley line. Channeling and molding mortal magic is easiest here.” Favian explained, pointing to the left. “Only students and faculty are allowed here, the buildings here are allotted for our use.”

Passing by a pair a boy and girl who were around ten years old, she stopped to watch as the girl cast a spell that caused the water in a bowl between them to rise up and form into a rose made of ice. After a moment the ice melted back into the water and it was the boy’s turn to perform the spell. Ranma’s eyes looked downward for a moment before she resumed following Favian.

“This is my home.” The man indicated a long one story building with blacked out windows lining the entire side. “For privacy.” He joked and with a wave of his hand a ripple passed over the glass making it transparent as it passed. Inside she could now see that it was a lavish home with large rooms and big furniture. The nearest room had a large fireplace in it.

“Your accommodations are next door.” He pointed to the building to the right. This structure was also only one story but was noticeably smaller and unlike Favian’s the fireplace was happily puffing out smoke. “Your luggage was recovered from the airship and should be inside. I recommend getting some sleep because tomorrow we’ll begin. Night.” He waved casually to her as he strolled away.

Physically warn out, Ranma nearly stumbled over the small step up to the door as she entered into her temporary home. Removing the cloak because it was pleasantly warm inside, she padded towards the room with the fire. Kasumi was sitting on the floor in front of the blaze and was currently turned towards her.

“Hey.” Ranma greeted and gingerly sat down next to her fiancé.

“I’m sorry about your cure.” Kasumi set what she was knitting down. “I know how much it means to you.”

“I’ll find a cure.” She boasted. “If not here then somewhere else.”

“That’s good, stay positive.”

“But for now I think I should lay down.” Struggling to get up on to her hooves, she paused when Kasumi helped her. “I can do it.”

“You’re only like that because you saved my life. So just let me do something to help.” Kasumi smiled and Ranma caught that she had once said something similar to the eldest Tendo sister.

X x x x x x

Rubbing his fingers across the highly polished wood table, Favian frowned and rubbed at the dust that clung to them. It was a testament to how quickly this meeting had been called that the usual standards of decorum had been ignored. Arrayed around him were the twelve senior staff members of the academy and the council that decided matters for the city.

“Master Favian how could you think that this would be acceptable?” Dorik, a man in his early thirties asked petulantly one then two fingers. “Not just one but two tieflings. We could sense one coming from across the sea and the other is part red dragon. Do I need to remind you what type of Demon is currently threatening our city? What type of Demon has just destroyed our last contact to the outside world for two months? What type of Demon has just wiped out the Phoenix to our South?”

Standing the man slammed both hands down on the table and slowly scanned the assembled council. “We are surrounded by the undead, assaulted by a dragon’s spawn, and he wished to train more of them!”

Dorik was stopped by the gavel of Varis, the elected leader of the council. Scratching at his long white beard, he took his time before speaking. “Master Dorik may be high spirited but he speaks the concerns of the council. At any other time we would have no issue with the training of these two girls and I hope that our concerns are wholly unfounded. But until such time that the city is no longer under threat, it is our decision that you will not train them.”

“Is that it?” He asked, looking between several of them. “I am a senior teacher and I have been a member of this council for twenty years. Who I teach, when I teach, how I teach are my business and mine alone. Do you think I’m ignorant of our situation with an army at our gates? A situation that was made exponentially worse by your decision to send our meager military force on a suicide mission.”

“Master Favian this is not about past actions.” Another younger member named Broder interjected.

“Of course it isn’t. Only my judgment is being questioned.” Standing, he straightened out his robe. “My decision has been made and with the threat my two new students are under by remaining untrained, I find it despicable that you would wish they remain weak and needing our protection.” His statement resulted in several members grumbling and others openly declaring him unfit for his position. The outcry came to a halt when Lonus once again banged his gavel.

“It is your right as a senior teacher to choose and refuse any student.” Varis said with a sigh. “As such we will accept your decision under the condition that they will be monitored.”

“Monitor all you want.” Storming from the room, he would see to it that every one of them would regret questioning him.
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Re: Cliched 9

Postby frice2000 » Sun Aug 21, 2011 10:35 pm

“You come to laugh at the sex changed freak?”

Could use something surrounding that. How Ranma says that and her facial expressions would be welcome.

children of Ladon

Aw poor guy has such a vanilla name can see why he's gone evil.

“Pity them because they never had

That's maybe to dark for Ranma to accept here? Not sure about that characterization.

The quarters did not turn out to be an apartmen

I'd substitute that line with Favian saying something like 'Not exactly. '

recommend getting some sleep because tomorrow we’ll begin. Night.” He w

Exchange ends a little too abruptly. Feels like it's missing something.

ust one but two tieflings. W

Needs a comma.

We could sense one coming from

One is so powerful that we

and he wished to train

and he wishes to train

Again scene ends seemingly too abruptly but that may be fine when the other next bits are included.
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Re: Cliched 9

Postby LawOhki » Tue Sep 06, 2011 11:15 pm

Three days later

Sitting on the ground with Kasumi to her right and Favian across from both of them, Ranma briefly stopped listening to Favian to try and move her cast bound arm. Another day or two and she would be able to have it taken off and then all she had to worry about was her bruised ribs. Her magical training with Kasumi had been slow, primarily it was relearning how to call up and use mortal magic. Before she had been using a mix with infernal energies and within the barrier it was next to impossible to project infernal magic outside of the body.

“Elemental magic is one of the simplest systems to learn but the hardest to master.” Favian continued on, waving his hand over a sandbox between them. The material shifted and moved, forming into square with circles at the corners and one in the center. “Earth, Fire, Wind, and Water are the elements around the outside. For lack of a better term, the center represents the void. It’s an incorporeal force that acts as a way to bridge the gap between and combine the other four.”

“The best way to explain void is to demonstrate it.” Holding his hand out in front of him with the palm up, a small ball of fire burst into existence. “Wind becomes fire.” The fire solidified and became a rock. “Fire to earth.” The rock lost morphed and became transparent, turning into water. “Earth into water.” The shifting ball of water thinned and evaporated. “And water back to wind.”

Kasumi clapped her hands together. “That was amazing.”

“That was nothing.” Favian dropped his hand back to his lap. “Simply controlling one of the elements at a time is child’s play. Combining the various elements is the true strength of elemental magic. Incantations are very powerful but can only ever do one task. Now, gather up some sand because you’ll have to do change it between all elements before we’re done for the day.”

Gathering up a hand full of sand, she was confident that performing the task wouldn’t take her very long. Listening as Favian explained the process of using this void element to transmute the sand, she hastily attempted the feat, and the sand exploded in her face. Wiping the coarse material off her face, she gave a giggling Kasumi a baleful look.

“Focus on the act, not how much magic you use.” Favian instructed. “It doesn’t matter how much power you have if you’re incapable of performing even the spells.” He said with a superior smirk.

“How about I do both?” She asked and tried again, channeling the same amount of magic as the previous time, she also focused on what she wanted it to do. Her efforts were rewarded by the sand transmuting right through water and wind before her entire arm was engulfed in flames. Crying out in shock, she didn’t have time to pat out the fire before it vanished.

“Maybe it would be best if you did not play with fire.”

X x x x x x

Shifting her bundle to hang off of her shoulder better, Kasumi smiled to herself as she enjoyed the cool morning air. Ranma was still sleeping back at the home they were sharing and Kasumi was happy that her fiancée was getting some much needed rest. It didn’t matter how tough the red head was, not even a week prior she had been subject to grievous injuries, and Kasumi could see that Ranma was still in a lot of pain. Patting her bag, she was looking forward to making a nice meal for dinner tonight.

Her own recovery had been very quick because her injuries were only bruises and minor scrapes. Stopping as her mind flashed back to a few minutes after impacting the ground, she had to take several deep breaths. She had frozen up from the shock of seeing Ranma’s broken body beneath her, the small red head laying completely motionless. Kasumi hadn’t realized how much she cared for Ranma until she saw that her fiancée could be taken away from her. While she didn’t know how she could repay Favian for everything he was doing for them, she knew that she could never repay Ranma for her sacrifice.

Any internal thoughts were cut off when something hit the building next to her with a soft crack. Looking down, she saw that it had been a small rock. “Ow!” Jerking as something hard struck her in the upper arm, she turned to find that there were several young children gathered together in front of a three story apartment building.

“Demon!” A little boy yelled and threw a rock that missed her. Other children in the group yelled slurs against her heritage and clumsily threw their own projectiles at her. In their haste only one of them hit her dress near her feet.

“Where are your parents?” She advanced towards the children to scold them for their poor manners. Several of the less brave immediately screamed and ran up into the building. The three that didn’t immediately run saw that their backup had left and hastily followed. They slammed the door behind them and she stopped briefly to wonder what strongly worded but polite words she could give these children so that they didn’t act so rude in the future.

She paused and reconsidered that course of action. Not that she didn’t want to help these children grow up to be responsible and respectable members of society, but being so direct about it rubbed he the wrong way. Acutely aware of the other people in the street who had noticed the children’s shouts, she decided that discretion was the better part of valor in this situation. She was nearly a block away before a city guard approached her.

“Excuse me ma’am.” He was in his early twenties and looked like he had some elven ancestry from his tall stature and the points to his ears.

“Yes?”

“Can I see what you’re carrying?”

“Sure.” She shrugged and handed him her bag. “Is something the matter?”

“Some complaints.” He briefly made a show of looking through her purchases.

“Oh, what kind of complaints?” Frowning, she had not received a warm reception here, but it had been primarily indifference and not hostility.

“They’re all frivolous but I needed to make a show of following through.” He answered and handed her bundle back to her. “I’ll accompany you till you’re back in the park. Just to be sure there isn’t any more confusion.”

“Thank you very much.” She was grateful for the company and the he was willing to give her the benefit of the doubt.
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Re: Cliched 9

Postby frice2000 » Wed Sep 07, 2011 12:35 am

Another day or two and she would be able to have it taken off and then all she had to worry about was her bruised ribs.

Could be broken up a little.

she was confident that performing

Subject of 'she' is unclear until you get to the giggling part, since Kasumi was the last female to talk thought it was her.

what strongly worded but polite words

Eh, showing a little of the internal demonic anger/fire she's inherited would be nice here. Her first instinct being to punish them, before she tempers that off maybe?

company and the he

company and that he Again, can't help but feel she should have some more anger here, or on the flipside of that just acceptance because of continued racism. One or the other, just the mildness of her reactions is kind of blah. Something could be done with them.
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Re: Cliched 9

Postby LawOhki » Thu Oct 27, 2011 8:26 pm

Sitting on the floor in front of a pleasantly burning log in the fireplace, Ranma unrolled more of a scroll detailing detecting magical forces. She would have preferred to sit on one of the comfortable pieces of furniture that was in the building but with her arm still in a cast she couldn’t hold the scroll. Briefly pausing her reading, she gave Pepa a baleful look before going about her task. The semi-solid fairy was sitting to her right trying to read as well. Ranma had been curious on whether or not the spell creature was even literate up until she started to ask questions about things that were written on the scroll.

“Why do I have a tail now?” Pepa asked. While the fairy was apparently interested in the scroll, she also kept asking random questions.

Ranma opened her mouth to berate Pepa for going inside of her somehow but stopped herself. “Karma.” Pepa while being annoying wasn’t being her usual obnoxious self and Ranma wanted to reward that.

The blue haired fairy grabbed the appendage in one hand to inspect and gave it several tugs. “I don’t like it, I want to be the way I was.”

“Welcome to the club.” Choosing to squash any feeling of sympathy for the fairy who had literally done it to herself, Ranma continued to read on.

Reading was the largest part of learning magic so far. Several books and scrolls were given to her and Kasumi with theories, descriptions of spells, some history, and techniques that were at the moment impossible to decipher. Some spells required complex physical movements while most required a certain mental flexibility to perform katas within her mind in the span of a second.

The most complex spell she had come across required one of these mental katas with each word and the spell itself made up an entire scroll. She had subtly asked Favian how it was that someone as inept as Kuno could possibly perform such complicated spells with simple incantations. His answer was that it wasn’t Kuno performing the spells but he was acting as a conduit for the divine power of the Goddess he served. This made those channeling divine and infernal magics very powerful but limited in what they could do. Mortal magic by contrast was normally quite weak but far more diverse.

Giving up for the moment, Ranma squirmed as she used her tail to scratch an itch between her wings. This one ability was almost worth keeping the appendage. She stopped quickly when she noticed Pepa imitating her. “Why didn’t you go with Kasumi?”

“Hmm, I don’t know.” The fairy shrugged and with a flap of her wings was up and over the scroll to get a better look at it. “Kasumi is nicer but like she said, you’re like my mom.”

“I am not your mom.” She clarified and put special emphasis on the word not.

“Creator then.” Pepa conceded and landed delicately skip across the paper. “So shouldn’t I be friendlier to you?”

“No!” Slapping her forehead, Ranma wondered how she could explain it so that the fairy would understand. “I mean-- if you want to be friendlier towards me, that’s alright. But I’m not your mom or creator.”

“Okay.” Pepa looked down and chewed on her lower lip.

“Okay.” Ranma nodded. “How about you help me out with something?”

Pepa smiled and the light intensity of her body increased. “What?” She asked excitedly.

“I want to practice sensing magic. Can you go hide somewhere so I can try to find you?”

“You just want me to go climb into a cupboard.” The fairy pouted.

“No really, I’m going to try and find you.” Ranma tried to reassure the spell creature.

“Alright then.” Instantly darting off out of the main room, Pepa quickly vanished.

Ranma briefly considered doing something else and using this as a way to get some solitude. She remembered quite clearly that Pepa had always found a way to laugh at her misfortune. Maybe this was Pepa trying to turn over a new leaf? Even if it wasn’t, Ranma was trying to get better at sensing magic so she would have to operate under the assumption that Pepa was being sincere in helping her.

Closing her eyes, Ranma relaxed, and focused on sensing the world around her. It was difficult with the ever present buzz from the barrier but she had the vague feeling of a source of energy in the home. Opening her eyes only long enough to navigate the home, she continued to narrow down where the fairy could have hidden. Pausing, she reached down to rub at her shins. Lately it had felt like she was walking on crooked surfaces even when it was a flat floor, and made it increasingly uncomfortable to stand in place for long periods.

Wandering around Kasumi’s room, she suddenly pulled open a drawer, jostling the clothing within but finding no fairy. ‘I could have sworn I had it.’

“Boo!” Pepa exclaimed, having pushed open the top drawer.

“Ack!” Stumbling backwards in surprise, she fell unceremoniously on her butt causing Pepa to burst out into giggles. “Don’t do that!”

“Aww but it was funny.”

“Just go hide again.”

“Okay.” Pepa gave one last giggle before leaving the room.
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Re: Cliched 9

Postby frice2000 » Thu Oct 27, 2011 8:34 pm

she couldn’t hold the scroll.

Gross movement with the tail maybe? Could be helpful.

Choosing to squash any feeling of sympathy

Not sure if that's appropriate really. You want to maybe move Ranma to being more emotional and you've just got ultra camaraderie joint hardship in a very similar way there and it's just nothing? No emotion, just instantly quashed. I'm not saying make a giant deal of it, but maybe a more emotional description of how she says, 'Welcome to the club.' A brief feeling of guilt? It's just a little too unemotional for her to that really. I don't buy the justification that well she did it to herself. At the least Pepa should call her on it or huff in irritation from that lack of response if you do want to go with this.

to perform katas within

I get what you mean but you kind of mean 'kata-like' right? Because as written it's a bit too literal.

“Just go hide again.”

Description of how she says that would be nicely telling here. Nice scene with her treating her a bit better. Like it feels natural.
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Re: Cliched 9

Postby LawOhki » Sun Nov 13, 2011 8:44 pm

Three days later

“Kasumi I don’t like this.” Ranma fidgeted nervously as a Dwarf inspected one of her hooves.

“I dun like it much either.” The Dwarf chuckled to himself speaking with a thick brogue. “But you’re a fine sight fairer than my usual clientele.”

Ranma barely resisted the urge to pull her foot from his rough hands. Grimacing in disgust, she did not want anyone to ever know for any reason that she was at a farrier to have her hooves cleaned. Kasumi just smiled reassuringly and patted her on the shoulder.

“You are the one who said that you were having trouble.” Kasumi told her.

“I just said I was tired of standing around. You’re the one who ran with it.” Ranma protested.

“Not sure how you got to our age without needing this done fore. I’ll just give ya a trim.” Releasing her, he went over to a rack of tools on a work bench designed for his height and pulled out a set of sheers, curved knife, and a metal file. “Nothin to be worried about.”

“Uh-- alright.” Her hooves and been growing and had begun to cause her pain due to standing on an uneven surface. Increasingly over the past few days she had been unable to stand for any length of time on hard surfaces. Kasumi had noticed and had tricked her into coming here after sneaking off to ask Favian if he knew of anyone that could help.

“Hold still now.” The Dwarf instructed.

Ranma nearly jumped from her seat as he made a cut into the bottom of her hoof. He barely paid her any attention, merely tightening his grip to hold her foot steady as he continued to expertly remove material. She kept expecting the next one to leave her bleeding and limping until it grew back but that moment never came. Finished cutting, he used the file to quickly smooth over the rough cuts. Next he moved on to trim the other hoof.

“Weren’t so bad now was it?”

‘Guess not.’ It was still unnerving to have someone cutting off pieces of her body. Tentatively putting her weight down on her right hoof, it set down on the floor flatly, and the stress on her ankle was almost entirely gone.

“Well? What’s the verdict?” The Dwarf asked while putting his tools away.

“A lot better.” Ranma answered sincerely while bending slightly sideways so that she could look down at her feet without her breasts obstructing her view. Now that her hooves had been trimmed, her ankle pointed nearly straight down like when she had first been changed.

“That’ll be a piece of gold then.” He stated and held out a hand.

“Thank you very much.” Kasumi told him and gave him the coin.

“Yer welcome.” He answered. “My suggestion, not that hitten me coin purse is in my best interest, is if ya don’t enjoy a clip then to walk upon hard surfaces more often. That’ll slow down the build up.”

Ranma pouted, realizing that her recent inactivity had been the cause of this. “Well thanks and uh-- could you not tell anyone about this?”

“Lass, you’re a tiefling, I don’t think anyone would care.”

‘Doesn’t that just put my mind at ease.’ She groused.

X x x x x x

One week later

Walking with her teacher, Kasumi drew in a deep breath and let it out slowly. She could hear Ranma nearby training and it reminded her of her shortcomings. She wasn’t resentful but she was jealous of Ranma’s rapid advancement. Since her ancestor was a red dragon, she should be able to perform elemental manipulation with ease, except she was incapable of moving past the most basic exercises.

“I feel like I’m only in the way.” She admitted to Favian.

“You’re not.” He said reassuringly. “Manipulating the elements at a high level is simply not one of your strengths.”

“But I’m part Dragon.” Kasumi protested without thinking before realizing that she had slipped into being overly familiar with the older man. For some reason she found herself confiding in him as if he would understand her situation even though he was just a human.

“Stop thinking like that.” He commanded and put a hand on her shoulder to stop her from moving. “This is why you aren’t making the progress you want. When Ranma casts a spell, she is not thinking about how her mother should be able to do it. She is the one doing it. You can’t rely on your ancestors to act for you.”

Kasumi nodded her head. “You’re right.”

“Just relax and focus on your studies. You have it in you to be far better than Ranma.”

“I do? But look at her.” She motioned towards where Ranma was practicing. The red head was performing a rapid series of impressive spells and physical attacks at an invisible opponent. “I can’t even light a candle.”

“I didn’t say you would be more powerful. A Succubae’s nature is simplistic. Companionship, food, and any measure of pleasure is all that it takes to make their life fulfilled. Ranma has inherited that to an extent and so she is simple and direct. She dedicates herself to each task to the exclusion of the world around her. What is happening now is more important than what could be or what has been. But you-- you stop to think and it affords you a wider view of the world.” Favian paused to allow her a moment of thought before continuing. “You will be better because while Ranma would walk around the world and overcome any hardship to accomplish a goal, you would realize that you need only turn around.”

“Thank you for seeing so much in me.” She answered, unsure if his trust in her abilities was warranted.

“Here.” He drew out a note from his robe and handed it to her. “This is the only teacher I found for your mother still in the city.”

“Really?” Kasumi took it after a moment of hesitation.

“That’s what I said.” He laughed to himself briefly. “Take tomorrow off and go see her. I have a task that should keep Ranma occupied for the day. And it seems we have been spotted.” His orange eyes shifted towards Ranma before he leaned in to whisper in her ear. “Remember, have confidence in yourself, not in what you are.”

She felt his breath on her ear and she blushed at the brief instant of close proximity before he was already walking away at a brisk pace. “Thank you.” She bowed quickly to him, flustered over being complimented.

“Hey Kasumi.” Ranma called out as she approached.

“Hi.” She greeted back, noticing the strangely relaxed way that Ranma was walking. Usually Ranma moved with a very stiff gait to try and mimic the way a man would walk. But this time Kasumi saw only a smooth feminine sway accented by the added length caused by her inhuman feet. The only time that Ranma had moved like that was when under Nodoka’s charm. While she kept a smile on her face, Kasumi internally marked this as something to keep an eye on or possibly bring up with Ranma later.

X x x x x x

Shortly before

Pivoting on her hoof perfectly, Ranma was able to execute a quick kick that would have broken the jaw of her invisible opponent if he existed. Her ribs along with her arm were fully healed and she was able to focus on training her body back into condition. She could already tell it would be a longer task as a female, having noticed the drastic decrease in her strength a long time ago, and the way the same amount of work resulted in less result. Ranma found it too depressing to consider that she was being hurt by both being female and part Succubus. So she focused on the progress she had made.

She may have lost a degree of strength from her injury, and it did seem very slow in returning to that level but her magical training was beginning to more than make up for it. Drawing a hand across her chest with the palm facing outwards, she dropped down into a crouch before sweeping it out to the side. In front of her a wave of force cut through the air like a scythe before abruptly vanishing. Any snow that still lingered was violently thrown up to mix with the large flakes that were slowly descending from the sky. If she couldn’t have the same level of brute force then she would be more skilled and with a greater range of options open to her.

Driving both palms into the dirt beneath her, she felt the lines of connection that ran through the material. Areas of density, moisture, dryness, and heat all caused their own reaction. Channeling power into a chosen path, loose dirt exploded upwards in a one meter circle a short distance away. Hanging for a moment, the loose material coalesced into small spears before raining downward with enough speed to embed deeply back into the dirt.

Straightening up, Ranma released a breath slowly, and magically erased her destructive practice. Twirling her hoof in the dirt briefly, she contemplated how to push herself. Even being limited by the barrier she found it hard to exhaust her reserves of power without performing spells that quickly grew too large for the city. Rolling her shoulders and briefly stretching out her medium sized wings, Ranma considered taking her training outside the wall.

‘Then again.’ Holding out her hand with the palm up, she caught snowflakes as they fell, and then melted on her skin. She had been working out for over an hour now and it was getting late. Her day had been spent focusing on fine control exercises and she had needed to cut loose. Seeing Kasumi watching her while talking to Favian, Ranma decided to call it a night, and start up her training again tomorrow morning.
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Re: Cliched 9

Postby frice2000 » Sun Nov 13, 2011 9:38 pm

and been growing

had been growing

She kept expecting the next one

Define one. Pretty much not clear.

she is not thinking about how her mother should be able to do it.

I do wish we got into more value questions regarding Ranma's innate abilities though and how she will or won't use them, but don't need that here.

A Succubae’s nature is simplistic.

Not saying that's wrong and this is obviously a summary but really isn't at least some of that nature mutable by their human sides?

and overcome any hardship to accomplish a goal, you would realize that you need only turn around.”

Very nice line.

This is the only teacher

This is the only teacher of your mothers

But this time Kasumi saw only a smooth feminine sway accented by

Hm...so using the magic is going to help to accelerate those sorts of natural changes...Or are we just getting more comfortable with the new form. Don't need the answer now but very interesting.

Very nice additions all in all. Really like the changes you made to the training scenes that you didn't show me previously. Made it flow very nicely.
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Re: Cliched 9

Postby LawOhki » Sun Nov 13, 2011 10:11 pm

Not saying that's wrong and this is obviously a summary but really isn't at least some of that nature mutable by their human sides?

Which is why the next line has him specifying that Ranma just tends to be similar.

frice2000 wrote:Hm...so using the magic is going to help to accelerate those sorts of natural changes...Or are we just getting more comfortable with the new form. Don't need the answer now but very interesting.

Ranma is just getting comfortable and is tired of going out of her way to present a front that doesn't work anyways.
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