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 Poem of two masks [Closed]

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Senpak Chu
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Age: 25
Position: Bodyguard/Butler/Personal Assistant for hire
Nation: Fire Nation

PostSubject: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Wed Aug 06, 2014 11:33 am

"It was a calm and sunny day at the city of Ba Sing Se" Senpak mused to himself. He wasn't feeling particulary poetic, but the excessive propoganda he had to endure ever since he got here started to rub off on him. If there appeared only one more tourist-guide out of nowhere she or he would find a very annoyed butler. Trying to escape the continious avalanche of touristic 'suggestions' and rhyming oneliners, the desperate young man had fled to the only place that sounded safe. "The oasis of peace" also known as the central park. If the touristic-guide sold more than cheap restaurants and was just a bit reliable, this might be the only place he wouldn't be harrassed with more stories about the awesomeness that was Ba Sing Se.

So far he wasn't dissappointed. The park seemed well tended to. The turtleducks swam in the lake peacefully, fed by some visitors. It was relief to be here compared to the crowded city. Granted, Ba Sing Se was a marvel to visit and Senpak was very happy he decided to go. Aside from all the marketing, it was actually a very nice place to be.

From where he stood, the unemployed butler noticed that some people had put out chairs and tables and it seemed people were playing Pai Sho. Feeling like he could use change of pace, the young man decided to walk over and see if anyone needed a partner to play against. Under the cover of his umbrella he camly walked over and noticed an unoccupied chair. The lady sitting on the other side didn't look very sophisticated. Infact her hair was horrible and she definetly could use someone to help her with grooming herself. However, Senpak figured that beggars couldn't be choosers and with a polite voice he asked "Is this seat occupied?"

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Noriko
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PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Wed Aug 06, 2014 11:48 am


Noriko Tatsumi



Noriko had been sitting cross-legged on her chair, contemplating the board in front of her, when she heard someone ask about taking the opposite seat - presumably to start a game. Glancing up, she caught sight of the owner of said voice... a veritable mountain of a man. "Please," She nodded once in response, gesturing to the other seat, for him to sit.

As per social niceties, the currently-unmasked vigilante had sat herself on the second-turn side of the table, allowing her opponent to begin. Resting her elbows on her crossed knees, Noriko held her chin in her hands, watching both the Pai Sho pieces as well as her bearded, smiling opponent. She was smiling somewhat, herself, though it was more polite than warm. As little as she looked the part, she was the equivalent of a prickly old veteran playing chess.

Mood: Focused
Condition: Good

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Senpak Chu
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Character Description
Age: 25
Position: Bodyguard/Butler/Personal Assistant for hire
Nation: Fire Nation

PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Wed Aug 06, 2014 12:10 pm

Gratefully, Senpak sat down and looked at the board. As he had to make the first move he was trying to asses his opponent. Even if she looked quite rough around the edges, it was clear she was not somebody to be triffled with. Her whole body was covered and she had the mannerism of a man. Here whole posture wasn't very lady-like. He pegged her as some sort of soldier. Deciding that the best way to get to know someone was confrontation. He put the first piece forward, setting up a classic frontal assault. The tactic allowed for some deviation, but it would be interesting to see how she would respond.

The young butler had been so relieved to get away from the city, he realized he had forgotten to introduce himself properly. "Pardon me, where are my manners. Thank you for allowing me to sit opposite to you. My name is Senpak Chu, I am a visitor from the Fire Nation Capital". He couldn't manage to pass the word 'tourist' over his lips.
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Noriko
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PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Wed Aug 06, 2014 12:48 pm


Noriko Tatsumi



Glancing up from the board, and the single piece upon it, Noriko offered a wry, understanding smile. "Sick of hearing about how great Ba Sing Se is, yet?" She asked, reaching up to brush a lock of hair back behind her ear, "My family came from the Fire Nation Capitol as well; my name is Noriko." She didn't typically give her last name, figuring that it wasn't too important, but it wasn't like she was hiding it, either.

"Thank you, for the game," She continued, choosing her piece and placing it just out of range of Senpak's own, starting her counter maneuver, "I like to play a variety of opponents - it helps keeps things interesting." The old men who played each and every day had very set styles and had become too easy to defeat, because of it.

Mood: Focused
Condition: Good

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Senpak Chu
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Age: 25
Position: Bodyguard/Butler/Personal Assistant for hire
Nation: Fire Nation

PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Wed Aug 06, 2014 1:07 pm

Senpak looked at her and smiled genuinely. "No thank you. It has been a while since my last game. Also it is very pleasant to not have to talk about the greatness that Ba Sing Se has to offer. After three times, it is very hard to remain polite."

He paused a moment to look intently at the board. The blackhaired lady seemed to choose a circumventing move before she would strike. It wasn't clear yet what she was planning to do. For a whole minute he pondered on what to do. Finally he decided he would have to wait and tease her a bit more. The young butler took a piece at the far side and moved it inward, setting up a potential counter-strike.

"It is quite remarkable to meet a fellow Fire Nation citizen in such a big city. Have you been here long?"

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PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Wed Aug 06, 2014 1:18 pm


Noriko Tatsumi



"I'm a dual citizen; I was born here, though my older brothers were not," Noriko explained, already placing her next piece - this time in a support maneuver, for her first, "My parents traveled back and forth, between Ba Sing Se and the Fire Nation Capitol, so I saw a fair bit of both."

This man was testing her, she could tell, and so she gave no clear indicator of her own tactics, yet. Noriko enjoyed testing others in much the same way, so she knew how it went. It would be interesting to see which of them broke the holding pattern, first.

"As far as Ba Sing Se being so wonderful..." She shrugged, her expression a bit unreadable, "Maybe it is, in the Upper Ring, but the Lower Ring is in a fair bit of turmoil, with all the drug dealing scum down there." They were currently in the Middle Ring, so Noriko wasn't sure where this man 'fit in', so to speak. She assumed, from his clothing, that he'd either be Middle or Upper.

Mood: Focused
Condition: Good

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Senpak Chu
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Age: 25
Position: Bodyguard/Butler/Personal Assistant for hire
Nation: Fire Nation

PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Wed Aug 06, 2014 1:48 pm

"Yes I heard it can be bad out there. I personally try to avoid such areas as much as possible. I don't think I would last long amongst the rabble. I have great respect for those charity-funds that they have set up to help the less fortunate" Senpak said very matter of factly.

The butler looked at the board again. His opponent was either clever or unaware. Either way, now was not the time to strike. Another piece was put in place, providing cover for his first piece. This granted his oppenent a little bit more room to move forward.

"So your parents were travellers? Must have been exciting. This is my first time away from the capital, so you can understand I need some time to adjust. Last time I left the city-centre was only to meet family downcountry. My former work did not allow for much travelling. It is nice to have some new experiences". told Senpak. "Even if the city tries to shove them down your throat" he added with a smile.
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PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Wed Aug 06, 2014 11:31 pm


Noriko Tatsumi



"I did a lot of my traveling during my stint in the military," Noriko mentioned, confirming Senpak's suspicion that she was (or had been) a soldier, "Though, it was far enjoyable to venture back and forth between nations, when I was a child. A lot less dangerous, as well." She was interested in his Pai Sho tactic, as it was not one that circulated among the older gentlemen of the park.

Deciding to make a rather minor attack, Noriko placed a lower general piece on the board, directly in front of Senpak's support piece. It was something that she could definitely afford to lose, and really more her way of feeling her opponent.

"What was it that you did, formerly?" She asked, out of simple curiosity. It was evident that this man liked conversation during games (or, it seemed evident, since he was rather inclined to talk, himself), and so Noriko did not want to be rude by remaining silent the entire time.

Mood: Focused
Condition: Good

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Senpak Chu
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Character Description
Age: 25
Position: Bodyguard/Butler/Personal Assistant for hire
Nation: Fire Nation

PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Thu Aug 07, 2014 9:55 am

Trying to keep the defensiveness out of his voice, Senpak answered lightly "I was a butler until recently. However job-security is no longer what it used to be". He didn't like talking much about what had happened after his master got arrested. It had been an embaressement for the entire household and some people had blamed Senpak for the masters' arrest. That hadn't been the entire truth, but who cared about the story of a young butler?

For a moment he remained silent and pensively looked at the board. Her move was interesting and clearly mend to tempt him into action. Deciding to not go for the bait immediately, Senpak put another piece in place that would allow the 'general' to move out of harmsway, but only towards her piece on the flank. If she decided to take the way out, there would be room to advance.
From the board the young butler looked back up to his opponent, carefull not to let his eyes linger longer than was proper. So she was a soldier, as he had guessed. And by the sound of it, quite an experienced one. Remembering how the soldier-caste was less appreciative of pretense and unnessecary activities, Senpak started to catch on to the fact that Noriko was answering most of his questions out of politeness. He noticed how her smile didn't seemed to reflect in her eyes and how the aha's and ahum's were perfectly timed. She didn't seemed bothered, but as a butler who had done his fair share of acting interested he knew that after a while it would become taxing. Heavens knew how he sometimes had wished his former master would just stop talking.


Trying to compensate her hospitality with a bit concideration he young butler said apologetically; "I am incredibly sorry if I bore you with my questions and stories.This is maybe the first time I have been on a holiday and I am dreadfull with small-talk. If it is distracting you from your game then please say so. I do not wish to inconvenience you."

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PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Thu Aug 07, 2014 11:29 am


Noriko Tatsumi



Though it might surprise the young butler, Noriko smiled again, this time with a touch of genuine mirth to it. "You're very good at reading your opponent," She mentioned, considering what to do on the board, while glancing up to look at Senpak, "No need to worry about bothering me. Four moves in, and this is the most interesting game I've had in weeks... I don't mind the small talk that goes with it, in the least." He had earned her consideration, at the very least, if not her respect.

Placing a less commonly used piece on the board, directly behind the bait piece she had left, Noriko immediately bolstered its defenses, making it a more dire threat. It wouldn't take the entire line by itself, of course, as no piece could, but it was certainly more than a throwaway general, now.

"I had considered rejoining the military," She mentioned, since he had told her something about his previous job, "It's the same, however, in terms of job security being... lacking." Then again, it wasn't like being retired was a bowl full of cherries either - at least Noriko was doing something she considered worthwhile.

Mood: Focused, Entertained
Condition: Good

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Senpak Chu
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Age: 25
Position: Bodyguard/Butler/Personal Assistant for hire
Nation: Fire Nation

PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Thu Aug 07, 2014 12:07 pm

Senpak felt relieved that his opponent showed genuine appreciation of him and he was humbled by her compliments. His mood was instantly improved and the young butler started to feel a lot more at ease. Being a dignified gentleman, it did not necesarilly show on his face. Maybe that the corner of his lips twisted a bit more up and that his shoulder lowered ever so slightly, but if you hadn't dealt with nobility before, you couldn't tell any shifts in behaviour.

It came natural to Senpak to show a certain amount of restraint. Years of dedicated education and uprising had molded him into the person he was today. A professional butler with a fine sense of etiquette and proper mannerism. "Madam, you have my thanks. I am very pleased to hear my presence pleases you and I'd like to extend the same compliment to you. You are pleasant conversationist and are providing me with an very interesting game."

Looking at the piece she put on the table, his eyebrows rose. "A very interesting game indeed" Senpak mumbled to himself. Noriko had just used a very controversial move. It provided her with the possibility to come down hard on his flank, making her general suddenly a reasonable threat. If not countered in time, the young butler risked exposing his 'lord'-piece. However, there was a catch with this tactic. By putting her general in the centre, she could push only half his line towards to outside. This also set her up for a very vulnerable position in the middle. With approximately three rounds before she could attack, assuming the veteran soldier didn't know a way to attack sooner, Senpak had several options to consider. Either he could react preventive, by trying to counter the strength of the general and reinforcing his lines, or he could retaliate by creating a threat on the other side of the board, or he could do nothing against the general and prepare a risky counter offensive that would pierce her defenses the moment his were breached. The butler felt he needed to keep his opponent guessing as to what he was intending to do a bit longer, and took the lion-piece, which he placed behind his lines.

"I can imagine the soldiers' life being a risky one. Poets like to give it a certain charm and heroism which undoubtetly it often lacks. Nor does it seem a very healthy occupation. It tends to leave a lot of scars, most of which can't be seen." Senpak said. "Though I have great respect for the soldiers willing to risk their own" he added quickly. "I even considered joining the military recently. However... I felt I lacked the proper mindset and mannerisms" the butler said with some regret. "Also I like being a butler. I don't think I could go entirely back to that after surviving the battlefield" Senpak mused.
"No, I'll just have to wait until I encounter the proper person to offer my services to." the butler said almost like talking to himself. He looked up and smiled. "Your turn."
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PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Fri Aug 08, 2014 12:48 am


Noriko Tatsumi



Though it was a subtle change, Senpak would probably notice the slight wryness that came to Noriko's smile, at the mention of returning to civilian life. "Most of us never do go back to our old lives, no..." She agreed, looking down at the board, though not really seeing it, for the moment, "They say that most of us never really leave the battlefield, even if we do survive it. That it haunts us forever afterward." Noriko didn't mention if she believed that or not, but it was implied.

Her Pai Sho tactics, much like her preferred battlefield maneuvers, were all about partnering the pieces to make them stronger than before. Another support piece was placed on the board, apart from the others, but well out of harms way, as well. It was placed with such confidence that it would likely be clear that Noriko had used this combination before - it was one of her favorites, as it were.

Mood: Contemplative
Condition: Good

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Senpak Chu
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Age: 25
Position: Bodyguard/Butler/Personal Assistant for hire
Nation: Fire Nation

PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Fri Aug 08, 2014 9:08 am

Senpak had noticed and felt a tinge of sympathy. His respect for this lady was growing by the minute. She looked rough from the outside, but this soldier seemed a special specimen regardless. No doubt a world of hurt was hidden behind those eyes. Though she carried her burdens without complaint and with an air of dignity. The butler almost regretted complaining about unemployment infront of someone who so clearly had seen the darkside of society, had waded through its dirt and still had come out on top. His own concerns seemed so meager in comparison.

The way Noriko placed the piece, with an air of confidence and naturality suggested several things. One; Noriko had no real aptitude for a pokerface. The way she put the piece on the board looked, deliberate and rehearsed showed that guile wasnt something ahe regulary put in her repetoire. Two: she seemed a creature of habit. Whether this reflected in the rest of her life he didnt know, could be. However, the way she made her move suggested that was a tactic she had used more than once. Three; she didnt like losses, a good quality in a soldier. To confirm his suspicions, Senpak placed his own piece opposite to the new piece. If she didnt want to lose it she would have to interfereimmediately, but this would bring the initiative back to him. Tge young butler deliberately hesitated a few times before actually placing the piece down to see how well she saw through misdirections.

He almost felt guilty that he analysed her so much. But she was a fascinating person and to Senpak Pai Sho was a game you didnt really play on the board anyways.

From the corner of his eye Senpak noticed another man had decided to sit down for a match of Pai Sho. However something about him seemed off. He looked pale and nervous, continiously scanning his surroundings while tapping with skinny long fingers on the table. On his lap rested a small box which the skinny man carefully held there with a trembling hand. Nothing about him suggested that he actually was in the right mindset to play Pai Sho. Only the fact that he started preparinf the board gave away that intent.
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PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Fri Aug 08, 2014 9:45 am


Noriko Tatsumi



The jittery man stood out so well that even with the game, Noriko noticed him immediately. Something was wrong - she could feel it, as well as see it. When her next piece was placed, it was almost done absently, so that she could keep half an eye on the man and his package, rather than her opponent; losing a game of Pai Sho was something that Noriko could live with, but having someone get hurt because she wasn't paying attention? No.

She had, however, caught sight of her opponent's acting; the fake hesitation as he placed his piece. There was no way that she believed it, considering the game so far and the move itself, though he was a good actor. Much better than she was, herself. When Noriko needed to have a pokerface, she generally had a mask on - in those times, it was her body that remained still, giving away nothing.

Mood: Unfocused
Condition: Distracted

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Senpak Chu
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Age: 25
Position: Bodyguard/Butler/Personal Assistant for hire
Nation: Fire Nation

PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Fri Aug 08, 2014 3:46 pm

Senpak noticed how their new neighbour was shifting back and forth on his seat. Once in a while the man would pull out a sundial to see how much time had passed. When the skinny stranger noticed that the butler was watching him, he quickly turned away and started whistling as if nothing was going on. The young butler couldn't deny that he was intrigued. Though he also deemed it not his concern and wanted to focus fully on the game infront of him.

However Senpak noticed he wasn't the only one getting distracted. Noriko seemed to glance at the strange man from time to time as well. It was clear she the man had her distracted. She was looking away when she put her next piece on the table. 'Seems her strategy is a defensive one' Senpak thought while he also took another glance. In the background he noticed a small stand where they offered tea. Suddenly feeling thirsty and figuring how he and Noriko both could use a break, Senpak adressed Noriko; "Would you care for some tea?" Getting some tea would also give him an excuse to look a bit closer at the package the man was holding.
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PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Sat Aug 09, 2014 11:57 am


Noriko Tatsumi



Glancing up at the offer of tea, Noriko nodded, uncrossing her legs and getting up from her seat. "I could use a drink, yeah," She agreed, stretching out her back now that she was standing. Noriko wasn't particularly tall (especially compared to her new companion), but she held herself with confidence.

Following the ex-butler over to the tea cart, the young veteran did take one final look at the fidgety man, both curious and suspicious. Usually when people acted like that, they had something to hide.

Mood: Unfocused
Condition: Distracted

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Senpak Chu
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Character Description
Age: 25
Position: Bodyguard/Butler/Personal Assistant for hire
Nation: Fire Nation

PostSubject: Re: Poem of two masks [Closed]   Thu Aug 21, 2014 1:50 pm

OOC: sorry, I was working on my thesis, but I'm back again

The young butler ordered to cups of hot water and glanced over the assortment of herbs and teas on display. It was a smart setup. The tea-merchant boiled water on a small stove behind his stand. Buyers could select their own tea from the counter and then let it draw by themselves. Off course that didn't allow for a very reliable quality of tea. However, that was no problem for the experienced tea-veteren that Senpak was.

Daftly and with purpose he selected several leaves from the small compartments and made himself a soothing combination that would allow him relax even more.

The man was being joined by a cloaked individual.
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