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Welcome to Lore, one of the worlds created by the Deities of Alyth, where almost anything can happen. With some magitech, Lore nevertheless relies heavily on beasts of burden and family-run, eco-friendly industries. Towns are somewhat numerous over the gigantic world yet far between and the wilderness is rife with danger, but Lorians have thrived here. It is home, it is wild, and it is breath-taking ľ but mind your step.

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New Knowledge; Tag: Cae
Topic Started: August 2, 2014, 6:58 am (318 Views)
Ash
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The cart trundled along through the forest, the pair of wooden nutcracker dolls not making any sounds other than the creak of wood and thud of impact onto earth as they dutifully pulled their owner's wagon. The owner, whom was restlessly shifting around inside the covered wagon, having been cooped up for several hours straight so far.

There was only so much maintaining of her toys she could do on her trips before she needed a break to stretch her legs with. She loved her toys, Ash really did. But even a dragon with a lifetime that could stretch eons could get bored, the younger ones especially. If only she had reached the next town along already! Then she could get to work trying to ply her wares, and see how many shades of red she could send the more prudish of customers turning. A small smirk crossed her face at that thought, causing a brief stop to her shifting. It was one of the small pleasures to her work.

But for now, she was just so bored! There was only so much longer she could stay in here without wanting to jump right out of the cart! Strangely, Ash was used to having to travel for long periods, so this restlessness was odd for her. Didn't take her long though to eventually pull on the reins of her dolls, making them come to a halt, as the dragoness jumped off the front, not even bothering to grab a cloak to cover the wings sprouting out her back.

The sound of rushing water drew her away from the path, and down to a nearby river. Water was burbling over stones, and Ash felt a sense of relief as she dipped her bare feet into the cool shallow water. The lower temperature caused her to slow, not wanting to run like before now that she had some fresh air and water rolling over her feet as she walked down the riverside.

There was the sound of children shouting and laughing faintly hanging in the air. Turning her head towards the way it had come from, Ash could spy the tops of some building through the thick brush of trees. It seems her next destination was less than an hour away. And yet her outburst of energy had made her stop just short. Ah well, wasn't like it would affect anybody other than herself.

The maddening stirring of her mind was slipping faster as she continued to just take her time along the shallow bank area, rolling a larger stone with her foot to send it tumbling down into the deeper middle of the stream and into its currents. One wing stretched out, flexing the muscles along the spines and membrane as the dragoness sat down by the water on the dry earth. Her feet were still in the water as she sat back, closing her eyes for a little while as she enjoyed the peace and quiet that came with being in an isolated spot of forest, empty of any other people.
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Nagisa Aoi
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Ah, sometimes it was a joy to mingle with humans - at least their children anyway. The little ones had a strange fascination with her tails, and it was rather fun to run around playing a modified game of tag. Or just to prod and poke the curious ones with the tips of her tails. Honestly, the energy they put out was tantalising for someone who could see that plane. Plus, the pureness of their joy was....intriguing for a chaotic such as herself. Fortunately for them, she was in not in the mood to twist the pureness in a way that would easily inspire the wrath of any Divinist.

After spending a couple of hours as the 'friendly aunt' who happened to live a bit outside the town's borders (it wasn't hard to manipulate the minds of the more skeptical adults), the tailed yokai bid the children goodbye and turned back to the forest surrounding it, skipping past the boundary of trees before they could chase after her into the wilderness.

It was strange perhaps, for one such as her to revel in the positive energy that surrounded the younglings. Amongst her kin she was rather...strange, in that her powers and nature were specialised beyond normal standards. In some ways she was quite like those borne from the Void - but they would be repulsed by the positive energy of the children. They certainly wouldn't have acted as a conduit for the production of such energy either. But she was not entirely like them, or their Celestial counterparts. She was wild, far wilder than a lot of those that fell into the region of the Nogitsune. She was chaotic to the extreme, with an incredibly unstable power. Somehow she skirted the borders and boundaries, occasionally even breaking them. Her behaviour matched her temperament; sometimes she was utterly benevolent, such as when playing with the children. At other times, she could easily stomach forcibly taking someone's virginity, or destroying their bodies and souls.

She was certainly an odd individual.

Bounding into the forest, the woman with nine tails dropped into a quadrupedal stance, her form shifting rapidly. Gone was any semblance of humanity; instead, she became a nine-tailed fox, her fur dark as midnight but patterned by hundreds of twinkling 'stars', fluxing between blue, white and yellow in colour. The edges of her form were shadowy, almost hazy, as if not fully solidified in this realm.

In this state, her senses were unclouted by the more complex emotions and thoughts that plagued her other form. Indeed, she was able to trace an unusually earthern scent amongst the forest; it was pleasant but out of place with the land - it certainly hadn't been present when she had first ventured through here. Curious, she trailed after the scent, quickly finding her way to a river running through the dense forestry. Padding down alongside it, her footsteps softened and slowed when the scent became far stronger.

Approaching the clearing almost silently, the curious fox's crimson gaze zeroed in on the draconic woman relaxing by the shallows. She sniffed once, confirming that the scent was coming from the woman before she wandered closer, her nine fluffy tails flickering behind her. If she was allowed to come close enough, the fox would even nudge her nose against the woman's hand, inhaling the pleasant scent of the forest that seemed to emanate from her.


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Ash
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The only sounds breaking the soft silence that lay over the area was the chirps of bugs hidden in the bushes, and the slight scuffling of animals foraging for food during the still daylight hours. Sounds that she was well used to from her years after having hatched, being raised by her parents and family in a forest well away from any settlements made by other races and creatures. That home was not even near where she was now, but the memories of that place made this spot feel more familiar, and even more calming.

Maybe it was because she had spent so long in mostly towns, cities, or in her cart that her restlessness had demanded a stop in such a spot. With the weather so fair, and the water just cold enough to chill the skin on her feet after having kept them submerged for so long, she barely felt any urge to get back to her travelling soon. And with the town so close by, Ash could probably leave it until the end of the day and still safely be able to make her way to it to find an inn. Though it might be best with that in mind not to leave it for so long, lest she find herself locked out by gates at night.

A kick of her leg made a small splash ripple along the water's surface, only to quickly disappear back into the regular flow of the steady river current. Her wings hung loose behind her, the tips of them almost brushing the earth the dragoness sat on. With no one around, and certainly not any sounds of animals that could pose even the slightest threat, this seemed as good a place to fully relax as any. It was her element she was in, after all.

Perhaps it was that thinking that caused a sharp jolt of surprise to race through her at a cold, wet nose pushing against one of her hands lying loose on the ground next to her. Acting on instinct, her wings flared out to their full length, an immediate flap hauling her off the dry bank and into the air. Rising up ten feet, Ash twisted around as she started to drop back down, getting a good look at the nine tailed fox with a coat made from the night's sky.

A greater splash could be heard as both feet hit the river's surface again, this time the water rising up to mid-calf, and wetting the bottom of the skirt that was a part of her regular get-up. She obviously hadn't been paying enough attention to her surroundings for the fix to sneak up behind her like that, but maybe this wasn't a bad situation given that it hadn't taken the chance to try attacking her. Although, the realisation that this was a fox with nine tails finally sinking in did not make things much better.

She might be a dragon almost bordering on a thousand years in age, but a kitsune with more than three tails was nearly always something to be wary of. Especially those that showed up unannounced. "Hello?" Ash called out, hoping that the fox hadn't taken the small flight as a sign that the dragon was going to get aggressive.
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Her approach had apparently been a little too successful in being quiet, as the dragoness didn't notice her at all until she made contact. The sudden movement made her rear back though, scooting a couple of metres backwards and dropping low, muzzle by her paws, eyes following the other's movement closely. She waited though; the movement seemed more reflexive than aggressive to the fox, so there was no need to attack.

Indeed, it paid off when the dragoness returned to the ground, splashing into the river. The scent of the river and the forest mixing was a little unusual to her sensitive nose, but still rather pleasant. Enough to entice her forward again, slowly, driven by instinct in her animalistic form. She did yip, however, when the dragoness called out, tails flickering behind her as she kept moving closer.

She was tentative, though, as most sly creatures were when around jumpy things; it was not wise to rush at them after all. Still, if allowed, she would once again wander right up close to nudge against the woman's hand, tails moving rather erratically, as if they had minds of their own.
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Ash
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Her greeting had earned a small yip as a response, though Ash would have preferred more than just sounds. Perhaps actual words would be better in swaying her back from being tentative about this new arrival and it's nine tails that flickered behind it. That star spotted ink black coat, plus the hazy form that was hard to keep her eyes directly on, said enough about the fox to make there no hesitation that this was not an ordinary creature at all.

Still, the fox did come out of the defensive stance it had dropped into after Ash's short flight, and came into the cool water to approach her once more. Her wings were hanging half furled behind her now, still alert while trying to determine whether the fox was friendly or not, and ready to actually take off if something happened. Her cart would be safe enough, the dolls quite able to pick right back up if she flew over them, and drag her wares to the next town.

The ripples from the fox's movements were easily felt in the otherwise slow running river, the dragoness shifting her feet when it was close once more, but otherwise making no attempts to move away. Her main focus was those twitching tails, trying to decipher if they were about to make a move or not. A cold nose nudged once more at Ash's hand, causing it to jerk up slightly in response. "Just what are you now?" She said softly, though still loud enough that the both of them could clearly hear the words.
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She practically whimpered when the dragoness moved her hand away again, ears flattening against her head. She just wanted to enjoy the scent after all, and maybe some light petting, but it was mostly the former. Still, the fox didn't press forward immediately; crimson eyes peered up to watch the woman's face, in case she had angered or upset the dragoness.

Gently easing forward once it seemed clear that she wasn't about to be struck, the nine-tailed fox sat down beside the dragoness' legs, unperturbed by the flow of the water. In fact, her form seemed to ripple in sync with the current of the water wherever the two edges would otherwise collide, like a shadow moulding around a stronger force. Her tails settled a little, and the fox curled them around herself enough to brush against the woman's legs, provided she didn't jump back. Despite their immaterial appearance, the tails would feel like silken fur against skin upon contact.

The question brought about an instinctual response first; a soft, thrumming noise, like a purr bit a little deeper and louder. A native sound for her kin. It was only then that she finally made a more formal attempt at communication, transforming her thoughts into a vocal projection, borne of magic. At the same time, she leaned forward to press her nose against the woman's hand a third time.

"A lonely traveller..."
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Ash
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The hazy image of the fox opted to sit down almost between Ash's legs, drawing out a small bit of amusement from her. Was the fox simply a magical pervert? She had met a few of those in her time, it wouldn't be too much of a surprise for that to be proved true. Definitely magical by the way the water was acting around the creature, it's ebbs not even affected by the mass while small ripples were caused from having to flow round the dragon where she stood.

As that thought came and went, she felt the back of her neck start to prickle as the sense of magic filled the nearby air. A small purr came from the fox, and then finally some words. Ash paused for a moment, before a doubtful smirk came along.

"Tch, like I haven't heard that line before. Or at least many just like it." She said, relaxing a small bit more. Her hand did not jerk back from the nose this time, although she couldn't say that having a cold wet dog nose pressed against her skin was all that good. "You can try playing the 'mysterious talking animal' all you like, but both you and I know that isn't all you are, kitsune." Being able to turn into a giant reptile capable of flight and a seriously long life did have its perks when it came to knowing about other races and creatures.
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The fox's shoulders seemed to slump somewhat at the dismissive response, as if sighing. It was certainly not her intention, but having the example brought up did make it apparent that it could be seen as such. It was a little annoying to have as much presumed against her though. Ah well, fate was fickle like that.

She retreated a little towards the embankment, stretching out and letting her tails flicker behind her again. "Not exactly what I was doing, but fair call. We do actually get lonely, you know. Sometimes, being an animal is...simpler. Easier." Taking a seat at the embankment, she eyed the dragoness with a certain amount of curiosity. Unfortunately, if she let herself think too hard, the complex stuff came back to mind, defeating the purpose of having reverted to her true form.

With another sigh-like motion, the fox began to shift back to her humanoid form, the shadowy edges of her fur sifting like smoke as the twinkling light of the starry coat vanished into a soft red and green glow. In a matter of a few seconds, the fox disappeared, and in its place stood a young woman with nine, larger bushy tails of that same dazzling midnight coat extending from behind her. Much like before, they flickered about of their own accord, appearing rather dexterous despite their size. She wasn't exactly wearing much more in the way of clothing now, but then again, a lot of kitsune were known for their despise of restrictive things. At least she didn't have to use magic to speak now.

"There, happy now, dragoness?"
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The fox didn't seem too happy in being called out so easily by Ash, but the dragoness added little for the hurt feelings of the kitsune for having someone realise exactly what they were before they could slyly get what they wanted out of the situation. Too bad that this time they had tried that technique against an actual dragon of all people.

The fox drifted back to the shoreline, puffs of steam emerging from the hazy form to mask it as they changed over to their more humanoid figure. For a kitsune, maybe it was easier for them to hide as an animal than it was for a dragon. With a kitsune, it was just a matter of extra tails to hide or disguise, whereas the dragon had its massive size and wings to worry about. Hell, at most, Ash could only hope she could pass herself off as a Komodo Dragon, and that was only possible back when she was young.

"So...you really are a nine-tailed kitsune." Sue quietly said, looking on at the form the other had taken now. Nine tails. That meant a lot of trouble, of at least a lot of power. Whether anything would happen, would be up to the other woman today. But for now, the memory that she hadn't yet been able to find a suitable research test subject for making a kitsune themed version of her tentacle box was calling out to the dragoness, now that she had a golden opportunity to gather some more knowledge right now.
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The way the dragoness commented made her sound almost unsure of her presumption. As if she'd been masking the number of her tails - which was possible, since most kitsune were skilled with illusionary magic. "Kyuubi no kitsune." Smiling wistfully, the brown-haired yokai tilted her head inquisitively, as if assessing the other woman, now that she was less...animalistic.

"An earth dragon, given the scent and colouring. I would hazard a guess that you are a forest dragon? Most mountain dragons are far larger, no offense intended." Golem dragons were very distinctive as well, so that really only left the forest subspecies. She'd met numerous dragons of a great many kinds over the eons, including ones that did not exist in this version of Lore. Thankfully, her mind was able to process and catalogue information regarding different dimensions and realms rather efficiently, so she didn't get things mixed up very often.

"Curious, though. I don't think this is your home, which would suggest travel. However, most earth dragons stick to their own territory. From previous experience, anyway." More of an observation than anything, the kitsune simply shrugged and began moving closer again, albeit with slow, languishing steps. "Any particular reason for travelling, if that is the case?" Her crimson gaze also picked up on something else - or, so she thought anyway. It definitely seemed like the dragoness had been watching her tails rather closely.

"Do you have some sort of fascination with my tails perchance?"
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Seems the kitsune knew her way round races as well, correctly guessing Ash's own sub-species of dragon shortly. Then again, she had probably gotten a big hint from being able to breathe in the dragoness's scent beforehand. And that Ash also favoured keeping her wings out while in human form. Forest dragon wings were made for tight turns and twists between trees, while mountain ones were most definitely made large, and intimidating fish the rock like scales that would cover them.

"Your guess would be right then." She answered, one foot drifting in the water for a better position on the rocky riverbed. "As for travelling, it's pretty hard to be a merchant if you stay in the one spot all the time." Although she did have a store back in Mrak that got frequent customers, travelling was where she was able to get more reputation for both herself and her toys.

Indeed, during nearly all their short conversation, the dragon's eyes had remained glued on the nine tails floating around behind the kitsune. Finding kitsunes was normally a tricky and difficult affair, and could often turn into a dangerous situation depending on their mood, and if they felt more like mischief than being helpful. And while she may have wanted to make a kitsune toy for quite some time, there had been no finding a good test subject willing to co-operate up to now. Perhaps, maybe this was her chance?

"Ah, yes." She admitted bash fully when it was noticed, a slight cherry red coming to her cheeks. "I was wondering, if I may..." She drifted off, her eyes still focused on those nine tails, though maybe it was obvious what her request was from her hands half reaching out towards the woman, eager to touch and get a feel for what they were like.
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Well, at least her memories had proven useful, even if that use was limited to identification of race. A forest dragon merchant...that was certainly an exception to remember. Now the kitsune was rather curious - what kind of merchandise would draw a dragoness away from home? Something with a strong, personal attachment of course, and reasonably portable if she were travelling around to peddle her wares. In fact, there was probably a cart or something similar nearby with the wares. Unless the dragoness had happened to invest in a magical container of some sort.

Nevertheless, her train of thought shifted quickly when her company began to blush - my, oh my it was cute. It seemed her intuition had been right yet again, given the outstretched hand. Shaking her head ruefully, the kitsune continued closing the gap, returning to stand at just under an arm's length away from the draconic woman. Around her, a few of the tails flickered and then weaved in front of her, providing the woman with all the opportunity she might need to get a feel for them. One even slid across to rest below her hand, hovering in the air, awaiting that touch.

"Tch, you could have petted them while I was a fox you know..."
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She almost couldn't keep her glee under control once the kitsune relented and gave a non-verbal sign of consenting to letting the dragon take a look at her tails. A shine came to Ash's eyes as she wasted no time putting her hands on that soft fur and running them up and down the tail held out before her.

The fur flowed like silk under her fingers, the dragoness trying to take in every detail of the texture to her mind in order to replicate later. She sensed maybe that there was some magic involved in order to make it feel so nice, but that would only be part of the challenge in making a toy version of them. There was still the question of just how flexible and strong such tails could usually be to figure out.

"I didn't think you would take kindly to someone just grabbing at your tail." Ash explained, never taking her eyes off the tail as she continued touching it, fully absorbed in her research. "Most races don't quite like me grabbing at the parts of them I want to research without permission first."
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The suddenness of the woman's response at the unspoken consent spoke volumes about her interest, though the kitsune did not know exactly why she was so interested. Still, that didn't stop her from smiling warmly, emitting that same, deep murring sound she had made earlier in her fox form, except a little more throaty given the shift. The tail in question would press into the woman's palms as she rubbed it; the sensation was rather pleasant for the kitsune, much like a kitten having its head rubbed.

"Kitsune are a little more lenient with their tails. Especially in animal form, as long as you don't go tugging on them, or trying to tear out fur." It had happened before, after all - idiot hunters who thought they might get a sample of the fur to examine later. Instead, they got a slow and incredibly painful death at the hands of an infuriated yokai.

That was why she stiffened a little at the word 'research'. "What...exactly, do you mean by research? Just what kind of merchant are you?" Despite a slightly more apprehensive tone, the kitsune didn't pull her tails away...yet.
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A beaming smile on her face, Ash barely noted what reaction her words had drawn out, already envisioning what kind of materials she could use to make a close replication of the tail. Faux fur would be a definite, though she'd definitely need to go for the highest quality possible, maybe even with an extra enchantment attached to get as close to the actual feel as possible. After that, maybe she'd just fit it over some cores used for the tentacles in her other toy, and that might just work.

"Hmm? Oh, for toys." She had almost missed the question during her little thought bubble, still running her hands over the tail in front of her. "I make special toys for people that help them find pleasure. You know, whether on their own or with someone special." Ash wasn't one to normally care about talking about her profession, but there wasn't even a care in her head right one about what reaction it might bring, too absorbed in building up the prototype toy in her head to bother with trying to care.
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