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/ By Willofiam [+Watch]

Replies: 8 / 9 days 12 hours 32 minutes 1 seconds

Keita and ___ are two people who have become very close over some time, it was clear how they both felt but have not acted upon anything yet. Some of the reservations would be their difference in species. Keita was human, she was Their species didn't get along in a general sense, they were separate, sometimes by law, sometimes by factions, there was always something that made it hard for them. He did want to find a place where they could coexist in peace.
So their struggle is a daily thing, wanting to be together, having reservations, thinking about what might become of them, they don't even begin to mention farther in the future, what may befall any offspring they have, but it's in their mind. Should they be able to overcome these things? Even on top of that Keita had secrets of his own {which I don't exactly want to reveal in interest of surprises!} it could be these secrets make him feel even worse, maybe even make her angry or not, who knows. He kept them secret, for how long is also a mystery they certainly weighed on him, she might be able to sense that.
But above all they do know they'd like to be together, how long can they deny themselves that? Or will they even be able? How many problems can they run into.
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Hearing her speak once more he supposed that did help with some of the problem he was thinking in his head. At the very least they weren't starting from scratch, being an herbalist was sort of an important part of alchemy. Though the mention of her specific homeland was rather curious again to him, would that make her a demon, he had no real clue because she didn't look like or not look like a few races, which was possible in itself, he just supposed it was rare. He had never been a teacher before still...though he was an avid learner if he thought on it. In many ways there was so much to consider about this, though if he was honest her eagerness and perhaps good cause was a big factor in swaying his own mind.
"[b Your cause is just..]"He pointed out and scratched his face a little bit, the slight neglect he had allowed for having formed a stubble. "[b I suppose I can try to teach you then, I'll do my best, but I have never really worked with another before.]"He shrugged a bit. "[b Though I honestly can not accept such a large sum.]" Sure, there were some potions and items from alchemy that were worth a few or even a large sum of gold, but the things he dealt with were mostly worth coppers and silvers, and anyway a whole bag of gold was hardly necessary for this in his mind.
  Keita Takeru / Willofiam / 3d 14h 30m 59s
Imari retreated into the recesses of her own mind for a moment, uncertain as to whether she ought to mention that the chief was her father. From her lack of escort and easygoing nature, she shared no resemblance to the rest of her family or even their brethren. There was no way to truly tell, not without her saying so or someone outing her as such, that she was the first daughter of the Qingese royal family. And so it was that Imari withheld the information from the start, instead honing in on Keita's body language.

If he were as humble as he let on, she was DOUBLY pleased and also DOUBLY persistent in paying him handsomely for his time. She drew nearer and nodded in agreement. [left [pic https://i.imgur.com/W2pN29K.png]]

[b [#FF40B0 "I have devoted myself to learning of herbs from the time I was very small, but herbal medicine has its limits and what you might call 'botany' has had limited use on our crop yield. Your alchemy, it serves more than one purpose. Those of our nobility who shun it and forbid it within our borders would rather the children not eat so long as the traditions are upheld. I am here because I disagree, and I would like very much to bring it back home to Qing with me. Yes, I know that I will not master it overnight, but if you can spare the time, I'm willing to devote myself to this, too."]] she promised again, gesturing toward the money.

[b [#FF40B0 "Would you teach me and allow me to observe you? I'll do my best!"]]

If he were to agree, all Imari would have to figure out might be lodgings. She couldn't travel to and from home every single day, she'd need to spend AT LEAST a night or two somewhere while she was away from Qing... Her father would never have agreed to let her stay outside Qing for any overly lengthy span of time with no updates and no contact, as even despite her being considered some manner of mutant by her people, she was still a member of the royal family. It was nice to know that at least if she went missing, someone would look for her, even if it was only to keep up appearances!

Hm. Would the alchemist allow her to stay if she could convince him to take all of the money? If not, sleeping outside wasn't such a bad thing, she had done it before. She would much rather be indoors but wouldn't complain either way, not at this point.
  Imari / Monticello / 4d 6h 25m 12s
By the excitable nature he was already picking up from her, he did truly wonder at the prospect of this person being here. As she vigorously took in his hand and shook it about, he watched her face as she tried to explain what she was doing here precisely. It seemed she didn't need urgent help..or more accurately she needed a lot of help, being taught? He truly had to consider the prospect, but so far he wasn't exactly convinced she'd make the best alchemy student, forget learning customs, she had to learn a more calm attitude for things like this.
Seeing the sack of gold coins his eyebrows did raise up, she was totally serious about this, she came from the chief, of Qing apparently, to learn how to be an alchemist. Putting aside all of his non-prejudice he had to consider what exactly could be going on here. He didn't want to judge her too roughly too soon, but her rather upbeat and excitable nature so far seemed to..not preach to being the best student, nor being precise with measurements, or patience, of course these were assumptions he knew, and he'd never truly chalk them up to what she was capable. It really boiled down to two things to him, she was [i rather] capable, thus being sent here, or she was meant to disprove the usefulness of alchemy to her people by example, unwittingly being used as a bad example.
Hearing her talk about not knowing how much to pay he shook his head a little bit, "[b I assure you it is not so much that I've ever been paid doing alchemy..Nor do I have any specific rate for being a..teacher.]"He said and let his eyes search her's, maybe trying to suss out some reasoning behind all of this. Was he the kind able to be a teacher himself? Surely her journey was rough enough trying to find him in the first place. He let out a rather large sigh as he pondered what to do. "[b I can not feel right accepting so much..perhaps some, but becoming an alchemist takes a lot of practice and dedication, it requires a lot of specifics and even more studying, so much so that there are plenty of different kinds of alchemy..are you sure you are willing to go through with all of this?]" He didn't really say no, if that was any statement.
  Keita Takeru / Willofiam / 7d 14h 10m 28s
To say Imari was overjoyed when he opened the door would have been the understatement of the century.

Really, was there anything more satisfying than finding something after a long and disheartening search? She was practically beaming, her tail bobbing behind her as per her elation. Imari took up one of his hands into her own blue fingertips and shook basically his entire arm without making any prior move to [i alert him] to the intended handshake. She had seen people on this side of the border shake hands many, many times in her past visits to other primarily human villages and settlements. Unfortunately, the idea that one initiated a handshake by first extending a hand and waiting for the other person was entirely foreign. No, she wasn't much aware of the finer details of the customary greetings of other nations, but she was more than willing to learn!

[b [#FF40B0 "Hello! Keita, you said? My name is Imari, I come from the capital of Qing to find an alchemist for Chief Horan! I suppose it is something like... needing a potionmaker's help? Ah, what do you call them? Teaching? Yes, a teacher!"]] she declared, finally releasing his hand and reaching for her outer thigh. [left [pic https://i.imgur.com/W2pN29K.png]]

Much like the bit of chord she used to tie backher long hair, a similar chord hung around her hip, holding in blace a compact little red-brown bag. After unfastening it, she opened it and extended it toward Keita in the hopes that it might incentivize him to at least consider her request. Inside was a large sum of expressly gold coins, seeing as how Imari so rarely saw silver pass through the palace halls. No, a job like this would require a solid mass of coin, and she was prepared to return home for more if he requested it. [b [#FF40B0 "Will you instruct me, please?"]] came the hopeful inquiry, biting back the [i urge to beg] if he seemed averse to teaching her.

A small white lie; Her father had not sent her and had not in any way promoted her to delegate on his behalf, but he had... 'approved', in a sense? He was relatively indifferent to what his mixed-race child did. This could be her chance to make him proud or at least aware of her, seeing as how he expected her to fail miserably while here across the border.


[b [#FF40B0 "Money is no object if this is not enough. I must apologize, I do not know how high an alchemist's fees would run. You are the first I have met."]] Imari admitted, shifting back and forth in unease. At times like these she did take awkward glances down at her soft, pink-blue feet, remembering that people generally weren't as cordial as Keita had been when he opened the door. It was nice to be able to get a word in before people could turn her away.
  Imari / Monticello / 7d 14h 23m 7s
Her assumptions about alchemists may have remained correct if some of them hadn't started to dabble with darker and more foreboding things. The number dwindled considerably after certain laws were enforced, and their like were ostracized for their practices. Though Keita rarely dabbled in anything too bad himself, it was a profession he knew shouldn't be thrown by the wayside, it had so many uses and helpful properties.
Keita was pouring in some liquids to vials for storage, the smoke dying off, when he heard a few raps on his door. He knew by the tone he was picking up that this wasn't exactly a matter of life or death, so it was curious he was being called upon at the moment. It did happen often enough though, and he let out a resigned breath as he approached the door. Opening the door, however, his eyes went a little wide for a moment, this was certainly..new..as a matter of fact, based on what he took in about this person in front of him, he had no clue as to what she might be. "I am an alchemist yes..My name is Keita, was there something you urgently needed Miss?" Even with his initial surprise, his tone was more or less business, somewhat curious. Though he knew much better than to blatantly ask, 'what are you' or questions of that nature.
The man had clearly been at work though, his clothes having a small amounts of soot or stains about him, his hair slightly tousled, perhaps even small dark circles under his eyes. This was possibly contributing to his calmer nature, but he was calm usually as it was. Still though sating his curiosity might be harder to do in this situation, by all regards he didn't ogle this woman in front of him, but even with his small studying glance he noted so many different features, the human-like skin, the demonlike horns, draconian, tail..well more or less..she didn't have a scale on her, it was fascinating to him to say the least.
  Keita Takeru / Willofiam / 8d 6h 36m 35s
As she had not been expecting to get very far, Imari was deeply grateful for the barkeeper's simple instructions. Of her many talents, map navigation was not among them. If it were near a forest, she would likely feel more at home, anyway! This city was a large, crowded place, which was more than easy to digest from a tourist's perspective in small doses, but she wasn't sure she'd be able to acclimate quickly enough if she'd had to live there for the duration of her intended stays in the future. Imari was sure to bow and to leave the barkeeper some coin in return for his tip, as was customary in Qing for the exchange of information. It was common practice to compensate people for their help, especially with demonic pride in mind. Most demons were damn near [i allergic] to personal debts, they hated owing anyone things. The faster people were compensated, the easier it was to clear your slate of any lasting debts.[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/W2pN29K.png]]

Imari picked her way toward the edge of the city after bidding those in the tavern farewell, with the noise of the busy streets dying down considerably along the way. More interested looks, but not all hostile in nature, which was refreshing. The city had its fair share of mammalian, reptilian, and even avian anthropomorphic folk roaming its streets, considerably better regarded than she was as she scooted toward the dwelling of the alchemist in question. It was a marvelous display of potential, were you to ask Imari. If humans were managing to live alongside other races, then maybe it was simply the fault of demons and draconians for prolonging an unnecessary demonization? Maybe bringing alchemy home could break the vicious cycle, and give her father a reason to be more open to human relation?

With the poor soil quality, less than a third of fields came to fruition. The soil itself would have to be 'fixed', and they didn't have 100 years to wait for it to replenish in mineral value. If someone was going to try to do something, it had to be [i now].

Imari saw it then, after quite a bit of deep thought, determined walking , and keeping an eye out for the house in question. The first thing that struck her was the extraordinary color of the smoke wafting out of the window, shifting in hue as it drifted out into the open air. Imari did stare for a moment before picking up the pace and scurrying for the door and following up with an enthusiastic series of knocks. [b [#FF40B0 "Excuse me! Is this the alchemist's house?"]]

Imari was not quite as well informed as she could have been, admittedly so, but it was to her understanding that human alchemists were a step or two above the apothecaries of Qing. It was a detriment to Qing to refuse advancements, and she would prove it to traditionalists like her father by improving things with said advancements. Er, after learning them, of course. She'd never met an alchemist, and so imagined they'd be easier to find than they were. With all the steam-piping and levers and gadgets she'd passed in the city, she'd have thought EVERYONE was an alchemist!
  Imari / Monticello / 8d 7h 45s
This recent peace with the other races was exactly how everyone thought, barely received but well noted. Since it was still so fragile at the very least sneers and disdainful looks were the most that went around, nobody wanted an all out war with anyone at present. The demonkin with their food shortage, the draconian's with their hidden dwindling of wealth, some knew of it, but they still put on heirs, and the humans, ever industrious and always growing. Growing too fast as all would point out however, they had the same problems but becoming more and more on a personal scale, a mess of problems from all the races with all the appearance of none, some inventions were great and revolutionary, some inventions were simply for show, rarely though were inventions recently about maintaining foods or sustainable life for the people.
Of course, every area had it's own brand of human's depending on where you went. This city closest to the demon's was one of the more industrious steam-engine cities. Putting all pride aside it was a marvel, and it ran efficiently, of course the lower down the rung you went the more you saw people struggling.
Keita was a rather complex individual, complex inside, but very simple on the outside, he treated everyone with the respect they deserved, until they proved otherwise. There were too many races and species on this planet for prejudice to have a hold over him, whether someone be soft, scaly, furry, dressed up well, or barely clothed at all and in a gutter, no deserved to be treated with some form of disrespect they hadn't earned. He was an alchemist by trade and by work, but things were constantly blurring as to what alchemy was, when before it was liquids, now it was a range of things from animating objects, and beyond, though the latter seemed to be more frowned upon even among humans. It ventured toward a darker side, but as with that there was a lighter side as well.

Imari was lucky enough to wander into a tavern that had a simple enough owner. Large man with a larger beard, cleaning a mug, this one was certainly a sight to behold, especially in a place like a tavern. There were many looks for simply how unique she was, but it wasn't as if everyone in there were human, though some were more anthropomorphic animal looking creatures, those were more easily integrated than demons or draconians, though not by much, they had only been at peace with humans for around eight years, so not much longer. The owner knew Keita, and knew how the man functioned, he wouldn't turn away someone who looked like they needed help, and the tavern owner, being helped by Keita before, wouldn't forgo a chance to make the man coin. "[b Aye, er..Pink one. You head outside of the city near the forest, a man's house be there, only one so close to the forest, can't miss it.]" On the one hand he sounded very helpful, and while he was unsure of this..person before him, he still didn't want the business getting rowdy.

Keita was indeed at home near the forest, currently working on some tinctures and potions, the basic things. A smoke that would shift from green to purple every so often coming out of the window near where he was working. He didn't know quite what he was in for today.
  Keita Takeru / Willofiam / 8d 8h 11m 9s
It had only been a little over a year since the lawful segregation between humans and their [i in]human counterparts had been lifted. Much like lifting a ban on anything else, the attitudes were residual. The prejudice had not gone away simply because the borders had been opened for trade, with the number of brave souls trickling into once forbidden lands being few and far in between. Merchants found it risky but often rewarding to travel across the border to grow their base of clientele. Racism was to be expected, but with the new regulations being so very clear and specific, there were few inherently life-threatening issues to contend with when moving to and fro across the border.

The demons and draconians had been only been on good terms again for the past ten years, with a great deal of trade, intermingling, and good faith having passed between them in that time. After a long and grueling war, a decade of peace has left both with some room to breathe. Demonic and draconian displeasure for humans has been shared in that both races have always been deeply rooted in tradition, leaving much to be desired as far as humans were concerned. Humans were always experimenting, changing, and crafting new bits and baubles with no respect for the natural order.

In short, [b none of the three races had much love for one another]. From the time man had taken up the lands to the south centuries ago, the races of the northern lands were in contempt of their constant change and advancement; Seen as inconsistency and betrayals to honor and tradition.

There are those amongst the nonhuman races, however, that have no greater wish than to see advancements within their own nations. Harvests have been poor for three years in a row now, though as how all three races are so incredibly proud, no one has made an effort to [i share] what little grain there is between borders.[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/W2pN29K.png]]

And so it was that the first daughter of the Grand Chieftain of the demonic nation of Qing fell upon the human city nearest the border, bright-eyed and as sunny as could be. Her mission? To learn of 'alchemy', and to bring the practice home to her people. Surely there was something she could use to tend to the poor soil quality there, in Qing?

Imari was going to do everything in her power to make use of her platform as a 'princess' of sorts, albeit she doubted she'd be well received. In truth, there was a more selfish reason for her excursion. Despite her father being a demon, her mother was both human and draconian. Thus, Imari... [i was a mixed drink], a cocktail of all three races. The rarity of the resulting 'strangeness' was cause for quite a bit of staring, indeed. Very, very few people in the world would look anything like her. With the horns of a demon, the tail of a draconian, and not one scale elsewhere as per her soft human flesh, Imari was exotic. A novelty. If she could do something substantially helpful for her people, they might respect her more. The temptation of lessening the constant ostracism was too great to pass up.

Clad in the garb of her people, the very pink and somewhat blue Imari wandered human streets for quite some time, mesmerized by the steel pipes as they huffed with steam and creaked with effort. Humans and their fascinating contraptions decorated the streets as they pedaled their goods or went about their business, though Imari quickly found herself overwhelmed.

What did alchemists... [i look like], exactly? Perhaps, if she asked nicely in the common tongue, someone could direct her to one?

[b [#FF40B0 "Hi there! Is there an alchemist nearby?"]] she began asking at once, earning sneers and shoulder checks from many of the humans passing her by. It was certainly worrisome, but she'd come too far to back off now. After about an hour of asking around, she eventually wandered into what appeared to be a tavern of sorts; Maybe the barkeep could help her?

She wasn't big on the staring, no, but she forced it to the back of her mind as she scurried toward the bartender, still as upbeat as before she'd left home. [b [#FF40B0 "Hi! Could one of you point me toward an alchemist, please?"]]

Quite a sight, that. A creature whose race they couldn't place, inquiring as to the [i one thing] that the other races hated them for so much. It was not likely that they would help her, even with her coinpurse being as fat as it were. Was she going to find an alchemist? Were they hard to find, or too rare? Was this the wrong city?
  Monticello / 8d 6h 33m 33s
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