1089: Legendary Adventurers, Futuristic Saviors – Chapter Four, Part Three

Title: Legendary Adventurers, Futuristic Saviors
Author: Stone-Man85
Media: Movie
Topic: Princess Mononoke
Genre: Adventure/Romance
URL: Chapter 4
Critiqued by SC, Simon Bellamay III, Miss Aubrey Hist, and Sir Paulo Rori

Hello, and welcome back to Legendary Adventurers, Futuristic Saviors, by Stone-Man85! I’m your host, SC, and last time, the author was PISSING ME OFF with how bad he was at history.

What else is new.

This week, hey, we’ve got the band back together! Simon finally managed to score some free time to get back to the riff with us! It only took three months, but what can you do?

Simon: Yeah, good to be back. Although I might get beat with the flat side of a sword later when the powers that be learn of my, uh, “taking time off.” I didn’t exactly ask permission.

…You skipped out on them while their backs were turned, didn’t you.

Simon: Yes sir, I did.

Paulo: How long before they notice, do you wager?

Simon: Uh…

???: Oh, THERE you are, you little shitwipe!

*A portal opens suddenly, and through it steps none other than Miss Aubrey Hist, chief arcane advisor of the Bellamay Order, and one of three representatives of the Siuland Order*

O hai, Aubrey!

O hai, Aubrey!

Simon, white as a sheet: …Decidedly not long enough.

Paulo: Madam, I do not mean to alarm you, but your eyes appear to be glowing.

Simon: They always do that. So do her brother’s. Especially when they’re angry!

Aubrey: Thought you could get one over on me, eh? Didn’t think I’d notice the disturbance a portal leaves behind in the air, especially when all portal usage is forbidden at the present time, did you?

Simon: U-uh…

Aubrey: Boy, you must think I was born yesterday! How do you think someone like me becomes Chief Arcane Advisor if I’m not able to catch something like this?

STOP.

WAIT A MINUTE.

*The room falls silent as all eyes shift over to SC*

Portals are forbidden? Why?

Aubrey: Oh, we’ve only been having demons following our agents through when windows of opportunity presented themselves, and so we had to initiate a lockdown until the matter was resolved. But apparently, boy genius over here didn’t get the memo – or the other memo that states that he was to remain on standby until the lockdown is lifted!

Dude, for real?

Simon: I told you I didn’t exactly ask permission to come here!

Aubrey: I should have guessed that you using portals meant you can’t here without authorization, but now that I’m certain? Bend over and spread your arsecheeks, boy, this staff is going straight up your-!

HOLD UP.

*Somewhere out in the hall, Specs drops a beat*

Thanks, bro!

Anyhow, Aubrey, while I would very much find the brutal insertion of your staff up Simon’s rectal orifice hysterical, I’m afraid that for the same of keeping this riff PG-13, I’m going to have to enforce Contractual Immunity upon you, wherein the extent of the violence you are allowed to enact on Simon is purely superficial.

Aubrey: What?! That’s not-!

My riffing chamber, my rules.

Aubrey: Hrkghk-! Can’t believe I’m a grown fucking woman and I’m still being bound by that!

It’s either you do, or I give you the space-time warp boot.

Aubrey: Ugh, fine. I’ll play nice.

Simon: Thank God for small favors.

Aubrey: Fuck you say, boy?! You’re only off the hook until the riff is over, then I’ll have Miranda here whooping your arse right alongside me!

Paulo: I am beginning to understand why Simon fears Aubrey so.

“Hardass” is a polite term for her. But she honestly does mean well, for all her hardcoreness, it’s just that her method of teaching is tough love with a side of whoop-ass.

Anyhow, we should get this riff on the road. We’re burning oil, here – and I mean that literally, Contacts bust out my lights, now all I have is this old oil lamp hanging perilously above the desk. I swear that shit’s gonna drop right on me and light my ass on fire…

But meanwhile!

Back in the Shrine

*Aubrey gives a polite golf clap*

Why thank you.

“But what are we to do with him?” Kogifa asked, “We’ve already broken many of our laws by allowing him to regain his health in our village.

Aubrey: Context?

Gary Stu gets hit by a crazy curse after killing an angry god-turned-demon, villagers grudgingly nurse him back to health.

Aubrey: They’ve broken more than a FEW of their laws, I’d wager.

It’s good that Aubrey is like us Librarians, and I can give her the barest details in good faith that she’ll be able to pick up what I’m putting down.

Simon: Wait, they finally dealt with Nago? How long did that take?

About a month and a half, somewhere thereabouts.

Aubrey: A month and a half worth of riffing to finally deal with a pissed off, demonized god? Either the kid responsible was off their game, or taking their sweet time.

Bit of both, really. Along with him complaining about how screwed he was.

Aubrey: Figures. Damn rookies, thinking they’ve got time to bitch and moan about how likely the odds of them dying are in the middle of a demon battle…

Simon: It goes without saying that I was much the same way.

Aubrey: And that was BEFORE your much needed attitude adjustment. You were already insufferable, that just made it worse!

Paulo: Refresh my memory – is it good that I know how bad Simon once was?

Ah-haaa, no.

Paulo: Fair enough.

You said yourself that he was cursed, so why not get him as far away from our village as soon as we can?”

Aubrey: With the Siuland Order, standard procedure with cursed-anything is to take it as far away from the Sanctuary as possible and give it a thorough arcane nuking.

Even if it’s people?

Aubrey: That’s a trickier situation, but still technically applies if it needs to. When it comes to curses, we can’t really afford to worry about the moral implications.

Simon: I don’t really know much about it myself, but I do know that part of the process for dealing with cursed stuff in the Bellamay Order involves some heavily-padded room barred from all outside access and sealed airtight from the inside with nigh-unbreakable arcane barriers. Beyond that, I can only assume that the same sort of deal happens like how the Siulands deal with it.

Aubrey: Basically, yes.

Well, that got dark. Moving on!

“But the lad saved Princess Kaya’s life and fought the Demon by himself,” Ji-san retorted rubbing his injured arm gently, “We should be grateful to him for what he’s done.”

Paulo: Grateful, perhaps, but he is still a threat to your well-being at present. If for no other reason than because, as SC is fond of using as an argument, he is a Gary Stu.

You’re learning!

“He’s an outlander, and if we don’t get rid of him, his curse will eventually spread to all of us!”

Yeah, it’s already causing issues for Kaya, as part two very clearly showed.

Before a heated argument could erupt,

You mean it hasn’t already?

Aubrey: Oh no, if this were a meeting of the representatives of the Demonslayer Triumvirate, this would be considered a mild discussion.

Simon: After I got officially initiated into the Triumvirate, I saw some arguments that almost went into full-on fisticuffs. And you don’t want to see three insanely powerful Demonslayer Orders trade fisticuffs. Especially not since two of said three Orders have representatives who are siblings.

Aubrey: Oh, James and I have had worse scuffles before becoming Demonslayers. At worst, we’d probably blast each other once and go unconscious from the double impact.

the dwarfish old Oracle slowly rose to her feet, “This boy’s fate has already been laid out for him by the hands of the universe. None of us can alter what has already been decided.”

Why you gotta go dragging the universe into things?

“If you feel that, this is the wisest way to go about the boy’s presence here, Oracle,” said Kogifa, “then we shall graciously abide by your wisdom.”

Aubrey: You’d damn well better!

The Oracle smiled at the outlander as she addressed him, “I suppose there is much you must know. Very well, let us begin…”

Warning, previously-learned exposition incomi-

Minutes Later

YOU AVOIDED EXPOSITION WITH A TIME SKIP OH MY GOD I CAN’T BREATHE!

Simon: That’s one way to avoid repeating yourself, I suppose.

For a long span of time, Alex found himself staring at the dwarfish old woman Kaya, and the man named Sojai, had referred to as the Oracle. He sat cross-legged at the far end of the shrine with Kaya sitting just beside him. The only sounds that could be heard throughout the wooden structure was the crackle of burring oil lanterns, the howling of wind blowing through the thatched roof and the clatter of the Oracle’s stones of foresight.

Er, I’m pretty sure they didn’t use oil lamps. But more importantly to me, she’s scrying again? This is the third time, now!

Aubrey: Scrying by Lithomancy? Oh, that takes me right back to my school-witch days…

Paulo: Was magic an easy study for you?

Aubrey: Not all the time, but otherwise yes.

Simon: Whereas I, in spite of my entire family being magically proficient and myself being a hybrid of a race of winged arcane masterminds, can only seem to grasp the very basics of it.

Aubrey: Well, if you ever took the time to be more like Maria and less of a shitty student…

Simon: Hey, I’m trying!

Aubrey: Try very much harder.

Now now, let’s keep things civil, here.

“You’re kidding me, right?” Alex asked with a wide expression on his face.

The Oracle smiled gently, “I’m afraid that I am not, young man,” she said casting another stone onto the beige cloth in front of her, “The stones have never provided me with false answers.”

Aubrey: She’s clearly far better at reading them than I am, then, because all I ever got was a mixed result, or the scrying equivalent of, “Try Again Later.”

Simon: That there was a point in your life where you were bad at magic is impossible for me to imagine.

Aubrey: Yes, well, I like to ensure that that part of my past stays right the hell where it belongs.

Alex shook his head as he tried to take this all in, “You honestly expect me to believe that I’ve been sent seven hundred years into the past by a tree that was supposedly the burial ground for some dead God?”

Now we’re SEVEN HUNDRED years in the past?!

Dude, for fuck’s sake!

2009 – 700 = 1309!

THE MOVIE TAKES PLACE IN THE LATE MUROMACHI PERIOD, NOT THE EARLY MUROMACHI PERIOD!

GET!

YOUR!

FUCKING!

DATES!

RIGHT!

Aubrey: God, he’s worse about this than you are, apparently.

Simon: Wh-? I get my dates right!

Aubrey: Not recently.

Simon: It’s only been like a year since I became a Demonslayer! I’m still adjusting from Earth time!

Aubrey: Adjust faster.

Remember what I said about being civil?

Paulo: …He asks, after having verbally bombarded the author for yet another incident of incorrect history…

That’s different. The point of this riff is to let the author know just how bad their work is. If I’m not dissing him for getting his facts wrong, I’m not being honest with myself.

He cocked an eyebrow and gave her a very skeptical look. “And I’m sorry if I’m being insulting, but all because a few shiny rocks say so?”

Aubrey: WHAT DID YOU SAY, YOU LITTLE BITCH?

Paulo: And when her body begins radiating an ominous blue light? Is that also natural?

Simon: Only when she’s mad. I’d suggest finding cover.

Kaya nudged his arm lightly and whispered, “I know that it all seems so hard to believe, but the Oracle’s wisdom has always spoken the truth.” She then looked to him with a skeptic look as she asked, “And haven’t you seen enough to know that all of this is real?”

Yeah, what Kaya said. You’ve been here how long now, and you’re still not buying that this shit’s going down for real?

“I have but it’s just so… so hard to believe,” Alex retorted.

Author, I think you need to learn the definition of retort before you use it. A retort is a snappy comeback, not a whiny response.

Simon: Maybe in your world.

See? That’s a retort.

Simon: I’m really good at delivering them.

Aubrey: One of the few things he’s ever been good at…

Simon: Hey!

Paulo: Why do you berate the boy so?

Aubrey: He came to the Order a whiny little pissant with a bad attitude, and despite that literally EVERYBODY, including myself, tried to warm up to him and get him to think more reasonably about his situation, he instead continued to be a whiny, often abusive, little pissant for the next six months, and it ended up taking watching the people he had grown closest to out of everybody else becoming possessed by demons due to their grievances with him finally coming to a head, before he finally shook himself out of his pathetic little pity party and decided to act like a decent human being. And even after that, he’s STILL a whiny little pissant! So, quite honestly, I’ve about given up on him at this point.

Simon: I guess that makes Maria better than you, then, because she and the rest of my team all stuck through it long enough to, you know, actually get to know me? Whereas everybody else was being nice, but making no real effort to get down to the heart of the issue?

Aubrey:

*Aubrey shifts uncomfortably in her seat*

Simon: Yeah-huh. Ten bucks says you thought I didn’t notice.

Chalk that point up for Simon on the board…

“I mean, this sort of thing doesn’t happen in real life, It’s just not possible.”

“As much as your young mind tries to deny it, you know that what I told you is the truth,” the old woman said,

Darth Vader the Oracle.

“The tree you stumbled upon in your time was the final resting place for an ancient God. A God that has died in this time, yet the energy that was left behind had fused to the tree,”

And it only decided to wake the fuck back up in 2009?

Simon: To be fair, it was a GOD. Shit that passes over the course of years for us is probably like fifteen minutes to them.

Aubrey: If that.

She gazed at Alex with her friendly eyes, “And possibly because you disturbed it, it must have sensed your presence and had you sent here for reasons even the stones will not tell me.”

Because they don’t fucking know either, because the author doesn’t fucking know either.

Literary buzzwords: I can see through them.

Aubrey: You say that like it’s impressive, but this author basically spelled it out for us that he’s writing it by the seat of his pants.

Paulo: It is rather difficult to not come to this conclusion; after all, it was previously stated that the Oracle’s scrying had never led her astray, and yet here we are.

Yeah, you got me there. If anybody didn’t catch that drift, they weren’t paying attention.

Though Alex wanted to reject the Oracle’s explanations up to one of his aunt’s stories, he knew that she was more than likely telling the truth. Because if she was, everything Alex had seen and witnessed for the past day would make much more sense to him.

Is the dumbass FINALLY coming around?

Paulo: The miracles, do they cease?

“This is… this is really happening,” he said lowering his gaze to the floor, trying his best not to faint from all this weight on his shoulders.

arnold-squats

Simon: That is a lot of weight.

Paulo: One might almost feel sorry for the boy.

I feel dizzy after ten reps of fifty-pound squats, I’d hate to be that guy.

Aubrey: Eh. I’ve lifted heavier.

By yourself?

Aubrey: Obviously not by myself, I’d be dead if I tried.

“I assure you that it is, young traveler of time. The tree that you came in from might be able to send you back to your own time, though,” The Oracle replied, and then saw Alex’s face lit up after she had said the tree would send him back. But then she frowned as she continued on, “But there are things far more crucial to your existence that you must worry about, now.”

“Like what?” Alex muttered, “What could possibly be more crucial than being trapped seven hundred years in the past, or going home after all this weirdness?”

For once, I’m with Alex. You literally just told him that he could very easily go right back in the hole he came out of and end up back home, no trouble. What, then, is obligating him to stick around, if he isn’t blocked off?

Simon: Smells like Inuyasha.

Yeah, I got a whiff of that, too. Kagome could freely travel between her world and feudal Japan via the well in Inuyasha, and the only thing binding her to one period for an extended amount of time was the fact that she had to collect the scattered shards of a powerful crystal, lest they fall to the hands of demons and royally fuck up history.

I’m starting to wonder how much of this is going to be Inuyasha, and how much will actually be Princess Mononoke.

“Lift up your right arm, and show everyone the golden band on your wrist.”

Alex raised an eyebrow, then looked at Kaya who just nodded. He then lifted his arm up and showed everyone the wrist chain that the Oracle had created for him. He then looked to the Oracle and asked, “So do you mind telling me what this is? Kaya mentioned this was holding back a curse that’s inside me.”

Aubrey: That… that should literally tell you everything you need to know. I’ve made hundreds of curse-dampeners, and that’s the only explanation I’ve ever needed to give. Dear God, I think I’ve found a bigger idiot than Simon.

Simon: I feel like that should make me happy, but it doesn’t.

“Traveler of time,” the Oracle began, her composure unchanged. “Are you prepared to learn what fate the stones have foreseen in your future?”

*game show host* OR WOULD YOU RATHER HAVE A NEEEW CAAAAAR?!

The dark-haired youth did not look at her, for his eyes were locked on the wrist chain on his right, “A few minutes ago, I would’ve cried out like a baby in fear. But now, yeah. I’m ready to know; I’ve practically been ready ever since I nailed that machete into the demon’s brain.”

#BitchQuitLying.

“Very well,” the Oracle said, nodding, “The band shows that you have become a half-demon, or Hannyo, as we call it.”

And here we are: the first time the… wiki… for this fic… comes into play.

Simon: Whoa, back the fuck up. This fic has a wiki?

Made by the author himself, no less.

Simon: How do you cram your head that far up your own ass?

I don’t fucking know, man.

So, according to Wikipedia, the term “Hanyō” is not actually a thing in Japanese mythology. The closest you’ll get to that is a humanoid Yōkai/Ayakashi/Mononoke (fitting, isn’t it?). But, according to the Inuyasha wiki, Hanyō are:

A) the hybrid lovechild of a Yōkai and a human,

or

B) a human with unfulfilled desires who merges with Yōkai and subsequently becomes a hybrid.

So, even though it doesn’t technically exist in Japanese mythology – at least, not where Wikipedia is concerned – it still sounds pretty plausible, right?

According to what I’ve inferred from reading the Legendary Adventurers, Futuristic Saviors wiki, Hanyō can be classified as a weird mix between Magical Girl, super sayian, and organic gundam unit.

So, yeah. There’s that.

Simon: That has to be the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. And seeing as how I’m a hybrid myself, I’m pretty sure I can count myself as an authority on the matter.

Paulo: Seems a reasonable enough claim.

Aubrey: Can’t really say much to argue, I’m just human and nothing else.

I could potentially voice a counter, but I don’t feel like it. Simon’s line of thinking is born from my line of thinking, which is infinitely better than Stone-Man85’s line of thinking just by the fact that I give a damn about what I’m making up beyond coolness factor.

[My mind is so fucked. -Book Specs]

“A… a half-demon?”

“Yes,” the Oracle answered as she explained into great detail, “The markings that were absorbed into the band are the marks of true evil. The marks are gone but the curse it left on you is still there. As time progresses, the poisons that saturate them will spread through your body, consuming your flesh and bones until their is nothing left to consume. It will then shatter your soul and take possession of your very body, turning you into a demon, just like the one that placed those marks upon you.”

Aubrey: You know, most demons one ever dealt with just skip all the bullshit and go straight for the jugular if they want to try and possess you.

Simon: Yeah, even the demons that possessed my team one by one only waited until a deep-rooted grievance between us reared its head. After that, they just kind of muscled their way in, and it was all downhill from there for me.

Aubrey: …He says, despite somehow coming out of it victorious and with his entire team still alive.

Simon: Hey, you weren’t there, you have NO idea how difficult that fight was.

“So what you’re saying,” Alex began, trying to control the panic building up within him, “… is that I’m cursed.”

…We’ve. Only been saying that. For the past CHAPTER AND A HALF!

Simon: WOW.

Aubrey: You’d think he’d know if he was cursed after it happened.

Apparently frickin’ not!

“That is correct,” the Oracle stated, but then she continued, “But there is hope for you.

Oh-ho-ho, we are BEYOND that now. Like… like… “lower than F-” beyond it.

Simon: This is ironic for me, in that Aubrey made up the grade “Q” to tell me just how bad at magic I am.

Aubrey: The Q stands for “Quit while you’re behind.”

Ouch.

Paulo: One could almost feel the impact of that.

Simon: I sure felt it.

The band that you wear was forged from the boar’s flesh and blood; acting as a link between the two powers.

No, it was made from blood and HAIR, which is not flesh. Stop getting this wrong you fuckwit.

It will halt the spreading of the curse and safeguard your soul. But there is a downside. The band was created from the essence of the God that cursed you. Merging the essence with the curse has created an entity within the band, that has become a parasite to you.”

This fic is now Parasite Alex, a terrible spinoff of Parasite Eve.

Paulo: Parasite Eve?

Here’s what you need to know:

Paulo: …Oh. My goodness.

Aubrey and Simon: Heh, cool.

It’s a bad sign when the resident Demonslayers aren’t even fazed by horrific bodily mutations at the cellular level.

“Parasite? You mean like a symbiote?” Alex asked, “A creature that needs a host body in order to survive?”

No, we meant like a God damn mammoth, Alex. What the fuck other parasites could we possibly be talking about?

Stop. Trying. To look smart. You’re only succeeding in looking like a moron.

“Yes,” the Oracle answered, “The essence will sense your anger and rage at all times. If it is peaked, it will cause the curse to strengthen and be unleashed, transforming you into a creature that possesses a demon’s powers, and yet the cunning and craft of a human.

Aubrey: Psh. Part of the reason demon slaying is so dangerous is because demons are craftier than humans. You can’t fool me into thinking we have the advantage, here.

Also, cunning and craft are the same damn term, author.

*Alarms Blare*

Of course…

Simon: Shit, that startled me. Haven’t heard those in a while.

Well, since Aubrey is the new girl here, let’s let her have her first crack at the DRD.

Aubrey: I assume this means I get to hurt things, since apparently Simon is temporarily off-limits?

Yup.

Aubrey: Good.

*Aubrey taps her staff on the ground; a second later, screaming erupts from the hall; Paulo decides against seeing the carnage when three spears made of arcane light suddenly pierce through the door*

Paulo: I have a fair guess what just happened.

Yep.

Simon: That’s not even the scariest magic she’s capable of.

Aubrey: I can perform magic capable of blasting me violently through the air if it goes wrong. A few light spears don’t mean shit to me.

However, the band will react against this and protect your soul,” but then she gave him a warning, “But be forewarned. If the red gem, which is the source of the curse, is shattered, the curse will spread, adding the band to its power, transforming you into a full demon. A demon far more powerful and destructive than the one that you slew.”

Ten bucks says that this happens to Alex at some point because the author just can’t let the potential for his little Stu being more powerful than a god go unwritten.

Simon: Given that the author went out of his way to set it up so that the consequences of unleashing the curse would make Alex more powerful than Nago, I’m pretty sure he intends to go that route anyhow.

Shit, even my making it so that your mortal soul was a retainer for flippin’ Hesperia is more tame than this, and that’s on top of you being a hybrid AND the heir to a powerful family of Demonslayers. I took my time and am still fleshing it out, meanwhile Alex is just this dumb human kid who suddenly- BAM, demon powers.

Aubrey: It’s a bad sign when three, what could be called “overpowered” individuals are less obnoxiously powered up than a fanfiction protagonist.

Paulo: Three?

Yeah, you. You don’t have any angels living in your soul, you’re not a hybrid of a powerful race and your own humanity, and you don’t know magic, but I’m pretty sure I’m giving several HEMA swordsmen hemorrhages with your dual swordsmanship. Which, you know, it’s not like dual swordsmanship is impossible, it’s more like it’s not really practical, but since when have I ever written a practical fight scene?

Paulo: And this qualifies me as “overpowered?”

Just barely, but yes.

“Wise One!” Kaya said, “Is there no way we can stop this and save Alex?”

Kaya, if you’re about to offer a solution that isn’t convoluted bullshit wrapped up in a bow and presented as sound logic, you may as well not bother. This fic doesn’t allow things to make sense.

Ji-san nodded at this, “The Princess is right; there must be something we can do.”

“The boy got this curse by defending our village and saving the life of our princess.”

“Are we to just sit here and watch him cower in fear of dying or killing us all? No one deserves to have that burden on their shoulders.”

If you poor fools knew who Alex is going to become in the future, I highly doubt you’d be throwing your support in with him.

“You cannot run or alter from your fate, traveler of time,” the Oracle continued, “However, You can rise to meet it, if you choose… by learning how to control the power that has been given to you.

Simon: Cue eighties training montage!

Wait, I have music for this:

Simon: Perfect.

Aubrey: Some days, I feel like I’m surrounded by idiots.

Paulo: If it is any comfort, I fail to understand any of this, myself.

Look here.

fe9f0eb5b7517419028a977c87c3798b43a542d75fab13f5113fcf69acce0ba8

Her hand disappeared into the folds of her large sleeve,

Aubrey: Hack! I call parlor tri-!

and then she produced a jagged black sphere and dropped it onto the cloth,

Aubrey: Oh.

Well, now YOU look like an idiot.

“Do you remember what happened after you killed the Demon God?”

“Sort of. I remember that black ooze covering it melted all away,” He rubbed his chin thoughtfully, “But before I blacked out I thought I saw this huge wild boar standing over me. Must’ve been the size of an RV; I mean, it was so big.”

Would you perhaps classify it as, “Big As Fuck?”

Simon: Or maybe, “Bullshit-Huge?”

Aubrey: Perhaps you’re even privy to, “God Damn Gigantic?”

The oracle continued, “This ball of iron was found inside the boar’s body. It tore its way deep inside his flesh, shattered his ribs and burnt away his innards.”

Ah, the bullet ball. I was wondering when that would show up.

“That’s just lovely,” Alex grimaced, looking like he was about to hurl, “And it’d probably be even lovelier if it had a point to the subject at hand. Just what does an iron ball have to do with anything?”

Well, if you’d fucking shut up and let her finish, Alex, I think you’ll find that the bullet ball responsible for kickstarting the plot is actually quite central to things.

“This ball of iron,” The Oracle answered ignoring the youth’s tone, “…is what turned that boar into the Demon God which you fought.”

Alex stood and slowly walked towards the Oracle. He sat down on the other side of the cloth and looked closely at iron ball, ‘This thing was able to do all that?’

“There is evil at work in the western lands, traveler of time,” the old woman said. “The stones say that it is your fate to start your journey there, and see what you can see with eyes unclouded by hate. You may even be able to find a cure that will lift the curse that plagues your body, if you choose to lift it.”

I’m willing to set aside the rest of this block, but the fact that the author used the “eyes unclouded by hate” line for Alex, when it made FAR more sense for Ashitaka, just offends the hell out of me.

“And just how am I supposed to do that?” Alex replied placing the iron ball on the cloth once again.

Simon: You start by going west.

I can’t just go trekking across Feudal Japan. I probably wouldn’t last a single day out there,” he then looked away as he mumbled, “I was barely able to survive Junior high.”

Alex, you’ve been in Feudal Japan for two days now, and survived a fucking demon god attack. Don’t bitch and moan about how screwed you are, I’m in no mood to hear it.

Smiling, the Oracle looked deep into his dark eyes, “Whether or not you choose to journey to the west is your decision,” she said. She then picked up the iron ball and dropped in Alex’s hand. “But I’m afraid that I cannot allow you to stay in our village much longer. You may have saved the life of our princess, but you are still an outlander, and all outlanders are considered unwelcome among our people.”

Paulo: Finally decided to start laying down the law, have you? It only took the course of an entire chapter.

Alex gripped the ball tightly in his hand and stood, This is almost too much for me to handle, right now,” he said turning around and making his way for the shrine’s entrance. “I just… I just need some breathing space.”

“Alex,” the Oracle said suddenly, using the boy’s actual name for the first time. “By traveling to the west, you may also find a means of knowing why you were sent here in the first place… and maybe know if there’s a way for you to return to your home.”

That’s his incentive for sticking around? Potentially finding answers in the west? Shit, if it were me, I’d STILL leave.

The raven-haired youth

Jesus, this is the second time I’ve seen his hair described and wondered if it wasn’t brown before. Why do I want this little shit to be a brunette so bad?

Simon: Because you’re surrounded by brunettes?

You know, I didn’t even think about that until now. Save for Shades, Monocle and I think one other guest, I’m pretty sure everybody in this riff has had brown hair.

Aubrey: What is it with you and having characters of importance be brunette?

I don’t know.

stopped and thought about what the old woman had just said. He then sighed and continued to make his way back to the village.

Kaya looked at Alex as he disappeared from sight. She looked saddened, silently praying for some way to help him after he had done so much, and had suffered so much as well.

He floundered around, got lucky and stabbed Nago once, and then got cursed. Doesn’t sound like all that much to me. Of course, then again, I write characters who literally GO TO HELL AND BACK, so maybe my definition is a little bit fucked.

“If you wish to help him, my Princess, help him prepare for the difficult journey that lies ahead,” the Oracle stated, causing her to jump in surprise,

*Oracle* “And no, I’m not saying that because I sensed your dismay, om saying it so that you’ll stop moping about like an idiot over that Stu.”

“He will need food and a weapon to defend himself. He will also need a small amount of the golden pebbles to buy other supplies he might need along the way.”

He already has a weapon, or did Kaya take her sword back?

Simon: “Golden pebbles?” Do the Emishi seriously not know what gold is or how it works?

I think they know what it is, I think they just don’t have any need for it and don’t understand why everybody gets so nutty over it. Probably a fair assumption, given that they’re a secluded hunter-gatherer village with old traditions that they adhere to religiously, and probably only live for themselves instead of for trade or commerce or anything like that.

The Amishi Princess smiled as she bowed again and stood up, “I will do just that,” With that, she quickly exited the shrine, leaving the old woman and the elders alone to be with her thoughts.

*Elders* “…Oracle, what is this strange, rainbow-excreting cat flying through the stars?”

Simon: Did you just insinuate that the Oracle knows about Nyan Cat?

Are you trying to tell me she wouldn’t?

Simon: Yes?

Well, fuck you!

After a While Later

Aubrey: It was another while later! Aha! You thought I wouldn’t know, didn’t you?

Damn, foiled again.

Paulo: Fear not, we shall have her on our next attempt.

Village’s Path to the West

You literally could’ve just written “western path,” and the audience would have known what you were talking about.

Paulo: Clearly, that would have been far too easy.

When everything was tightly packed away in the animal skin sack that Kaya had given him, Alex picked it up by its leathery strap and looped it around his shoulder. The sack to his surprise was not as heavy as he had thought it would be.

It’s probably only big enough to hold a few small things, I’m not surprised that it doesn’t weigh much.

Paulo: Packing a bag smartly also helps to even the weight out. We were taught this in basic Page training before we graduated to full knighthood.

Simon: For us, Maria’s usually kind enough to magically lighten the load on our bags whenever we’re out long-term on a demon hunt. I say usually because sometimes she forgets and we end up breaking our backs.

Aubrey: That’s my ‘Ria – can list every spell ever conceived off the top of her head, but can’t remember to enchant the weight out of an obnoxiously heavy travel bag. Rather in line with the entire Siuland family, if I’m honest. They’re great archivists, but shit workhorses.

Makes you wonder how they get shit done, huh?

Aubrey: Makes me wonder how demons haven’t razed their Sanctuary to the ground yet. Conversely, the Bellamay family are amazing workhorses, but shit archivists.

Simon: Well that’s fitting.

They balance out their shitty selves. Wait, but then, where’s the third Demonslayer Order of the Triumvirate come in?

Aubrey and Simon: They’re the sneaky ones.

Ah.

“Everything that you’ll need for the first half of your journey is all there, lad,” said Ji-san, whom Alex had instantly recognized as the man from the tower. “We gave you a week’s supply of rice, a few spice bulbs and a piece of smoked meat.”

“Sounds yummy,” Alex replied examining the Machete hanging from his jeans, something else Kaya had given him.

Paulo: It does sound enticing, but I rather doubt that the Emishi people had as sophisticated a system of food preservation as my platoon did.

You had the mage preserve it, didn’t you?

Aubrey: Hey, he did say sophisticated.

That he did. And that they don’t. The Emishi people would, at best, probably salt-cure their meats or do something to dry them out in order to keep them fresh for longer periods of time. Freezers weren’t exactly common in the Muromachi period, see.

And I just realized where Paulo was going with that train of thought: they didn’t just hand Alex a raw hunk of meat, did they? Because that shit’ll spoil by sundown otherwise, and probably give Alex a horrible night of the shits, or worse. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

Simon: Did I just hear concern for the Stu come out of your mouth?

Dude, I’ve been a victim of food poisoning before, it’s fucking horrible.

[So he’ll outright wish for death upon the Stu, but still has it in him to feel badly for the boy getting sick off sour meat? Oookay… -Book Specs]

It all seemed so strange that these people, whom he had known for barely an hour were showing him this much generosity. When he had gone on that camping trip with his friends back in Florida, the only things his dad could give him was a half empty can of bug repellant. a bag of trail-mix and a flash light. The rest he had to improvise on camping training he had learned from his ex-Marine uncle in Nebraska.

Oh yeah, I forgot, the fic’s stupid wiki makes mention of an ex-Green Beret uncle living out of Colorado named Jaye who supposedly taught Alex a whole bunch of badass shit prior to the story. In fact, his martial arts training is attributed to the guy. You see how well those lessons have been paying off, huh?

Simon: Um, you just said “Colorado” and “Green Beret.”

Yep.

Paulo: But, the fic clearly-

This idiot can barely even hold to the movie canon, and you dummies still think he can hold to his own fic canon? You haven’t been in this riffing business long, have you?

Aubrey: See, this is one of those situations where it would help to have a Siuland archivist handy. Those bastards record everything and commit it to memory. You actually have to be born with a photographic memory to even qualify for a position in the Siuland Archives, they’re that anal about it.

Well, I guess it sucks to be Stone-Man85, huh?

Ji-san then handed Alex a small red pouch, “The Princess also told me to give you a few pieces of gold.”

“Gold?” Alex asked staring at the pouch, in utter shock, and looked back to Ji-san to confirm it, “Did you just say that there’s gold in this thing?”

“Our people don’t have a true form of money, Lad,” Ji-san replied. “And you’re going to need money where you’re going.”

“But, uh… don’t you think that the gold’s sort of… well… over doing it?” Alex asked, still can’t believing he was given such a commodity on this journey,

What, you think people have fucking paper currency in this time period? Hell no, that paper is still being used to make doors for noblemen’s mansions over in Kyoto!

Paulo: I assume the paper doors were more for show than security?

Well, rice paper houses were a status symbol of sorts. You hired guys to defend the place for you, and you built thick stone walls around the joint and built the house like a maze that only you, your guards, and your house staff (if any) knew the layout to, so that even though the structure itself was flimsy, you would still be safe in one. Plus, only the outermost walls and doors were rice paper, the rest of the house was built with stronger materials in the event that a bad storm hit so that the fucking place wouldn’t fall down. That would be pretty crappy, taking a nap and then the roof caves in on you out of nowhere, you know?

If you lived in a rice paper house, odds were you could probably afford to have at least ONE bodyguard. Not necessarily well trained, but good enough to be called passable. If you were upper-class, but of the lower echelons or perhaps of a scummy nature, you could possibly hire some big-ass thugs to hold the fort. Higher up the chain, you could maybe get some kind of civilian guards. The really upper-class folks would even go overboard and hire their own freaking Samurai guard force to keep the peace. They were probably mainly comprised of masterless Rōnin-for-hire, because most Samurai were already pledged to a lord or cause of some sort, and were so fiercely loyal that trying to poach one was tantamount to treason according to their Bushido code – and they’d kill you for that bullshit.

And if you WERE a Samurai, of particularly high rank (but not quite a Shogun – or, shit, even if you WERE a Shogun), that guard force was made up of the men you commanded.

And if you happened to be, say, a good friend of the local Shinobi clans (or at least someone they weren’t likely to try and kill in the immediate future), and you named the right price, you could even have your own attack ninjas on the premise to REALLY fuck up an intruder’s day.

So, I mean, it probably wasn’t anymore dangerous to live in a rice paper mansion than it was living in the city, proper.

Paulo: Would it be logical to assume that the master of the house was likely a trained swordsman, himself?

Oh, just about any homeowner will beat the hell out of a dumbass trying to break in. Even if the guy wasn’t a trained swordsman, he probably still kept a stick somewhere to whoop ass with. That’s just common sense, at that point.

Simon: I feel so educated now. And I didn’t even ask for that lesson!

I try.

“I mean, you and Kaya are practically the only ones giving me everything save for the kitchen sink.”

The old man raised his thick, white eyebrows, “The… kitchen…sink? What’s that?”

Alex slapped himself in the head as he berated himself in thought, ‘D’oh! That’s right, I’m talking to a guy who probably doesn’t even know what a kitchen is’.

He finally figured it out that nobody is going to understand his terminology. It took TWO FUCKING CHAPTERS.

Simon: “Probably doesn’t know what a kitchen is?” How the hell do you think people in Japan COOKED, dumbass?! The Muromachi period was sophisticated enough to have decent cookware, I’m pretty sure they had at least a rudimentary kitchen setup in most houses! Not everybody lived off of campfires and fresh kills, you know!

Eh, he’s kind of right though, the Emishi people probably DON’T know what a kitchen is. Or if they do, it’s an outdoor kitchen set over a fire, and the food is all prepped in a big communal pot. Remember, they weren’t exactly big on pleasant relations with others, so they probably didn’t have much to work with in that regard. You certainly wouldn’t see an Emishi village using egg whisks and Tandoors, now would you?

Aubrey: I’m shocked you knew what Tandoors are.

I heard someone on MasterChef say that they had made a “Tandoori-style” something-or-other that wasn’t chicken, got curious and looked it up.

Paulo: So then, you were merely seeking a reason to weasel a new bit of knowledge you had just learned into this riff, yes?

Yes sir, I was.

He shook his head.

Don’t you fucking judge me, Alex!

What I meant was, you people are being just a little… I don’t know, just a little too generous with me, that’s all.”

They’re not.

Simon: They’re really not.

Aubrey: Like, really not.

Paulo: Honestly boy, they gave you a weapon which was not described as having had maintenance done after its previous combat usage, so the edge is likely beginning to dull, amongst other notable issues; they gave you meat which was not specified as having been cured, rice for five days – perhaps seven, if you ration yourself properly – and some spices, if you feel like using them at all; and it is very likely that you only have enough gold for maybe the most basic amenities, should you need any. That is not being “overly generous,” that is basic troop supply for short-term marches. You lack even a bedroll to rest on, or any means of building shelter against storms! Not to mention, no medical supplies! If anything, you have been had, sir!

And there it is. And I wasn’t even the one who said it.

but then he chuckled, “But seriously, in the future, Indoor Plumbing: it’s gonna be big.”

…Alex, fuck off with your stupid movie quotes, already. I know that came from a movie – it was fucking Hercules, for Christ’s sake.

Ji-san chuckled at the outlander’s humor and simply replied, “Believe it or not, lad, what we’ve given you is really not all that much in comparison to what we have stored away.

Yeah, the riffers are well aware.

And because we coexist with the world around us, there’s almost never a shortage of food or resources. Those small nuggets of gold you have there hold no value to us. In our eyes, they’re just pieces of metal we find in the ground where we plant our rice.”

Whiiich is probably a good part of the reason the rest of Japan subjugated their asses, if we’re honest.

“I see your point, Nathan said, tying the pouch to a belt loop, “Though I still think the gold’s gonna invite trouble for me in the future.”

Only if you go crossing bandits, bro. Mind you wallet and where you walk, you’ll be fine.

Also, there’s Nathan again! Been a while since he popped in, but there’s your friendly reminder that this fic is RIPPING OFF a similarly bad piece of work.

Aubrey: Wait, what?

Yep. Almost the same fic name and everything.

Aubrey: …Is it possible to punch somebody with my mind? I should really look into researching that.

“But even more importantly, lad,” Ji-san continued. “You risked your life and your humanity to save our Princess Kaya, even though you had absolutely no ties or loyalty towards us. You fought and killed a Demon-God by yourself with only a mere sword as your defense. You saved our village, Lad. In these aging eyes of mine, the sacrifice made on your part is worth a thousand times its weight in rice and gold.”

Simon: You know what they call that in my world?

What’s that?

Simon: “Just earning his wage.”

Wow, the native residents of Altirand* really don’t respect you Demonslayers, do they?

Aubrey: On the contrary, we’re very respected. It’s just, they have a very ho-hum way of looking at things.

Oh.

Alex just nodded, understanding the old man’s logic, but he shook his head as he let a small smile creep up on his face, “That may be, but to me, well… it was, well, it was the right thing to do. I couldn’t just stand by and do nothing.”

Is it weird that I’m starting to get sick of characters who act like assholes but secretly have a warm fuzzy side to them?

Simon: So, Aubrey and I, then?

No, you two are legitimately assholes with good intentions. Characters like Alex act like good guy assholes, when they’re really just idiots. That’s what I’m getting sick of.

Aubrey: Oh, whew! I was worried we’d become obsolete.

Nah, I take of my OCs. Sort of. Barring the Specs and Co. because I hate them.

[Gee, thanks. -Book Specs]

Feeling embarrassed at what he had just said, he ran his fingers over the black leather of his sack, checked to be sure his jacket was still tied around his waist, and looked himself over one last time. “Well… I guess I’m all set then,” With a slight grin, he extended his hand towards Ji-san, “Thanks for everything, Gramps.”

The white-bearded man looked at the young outlander quizzically for a beat, then slowly extended his own hand and clasped Alex’s, “May the Gods be with you on your journey, Lad,” he said with an elderly smile.

“With an elderly smile?” What, did you go to the Tara Gillespie school of adjectives?

“Let’s hope so, and that they’re friendly,” Alex replied with a half grin, “So far a really pissed off Boar God just made my life more difficult than it needs to be. The others probably don’t like me very much now that I’ve killed one of their own.”

Depends on who you talk to, really. Like, Amaterasu might be mildly disappointed in you, but understand that Nago really had just lost his shit and nothing could have been done to help him, but on the flipside of that, good luck explaining this to Nago’s fellow Boar God later on.

Simon: Pretty sure Tsukiyomi can’t be bothered to give a shit, though.

Yeah no, Tsukiyomi’s too busy to care right now.

It was after that, they both shared a brief laugh.

*Watch tower guard* “Ahaha! You’re joking about the gods’ ire and you really shouldn’t be! So funny!”

Paulo: Surely the gods think so as well.

Oh, of course.

He then turned around and started towards the western edge of the Amishi village. As he walked across the village’s central ring, he notice that many of the villagers had left their huts to watch him. Many gawked at him as though he were a being from another world, while others just seem to glare disgustedly.

Somewhere in the crowd is just Shades flipping him off.

Paulo: Grumbling insults all the while.

Though their expressions varied, Alex could tell just by looking at them, the same desire in all of them: his immediate absence. It was a desire he had learned to recognize, even at some of the jocks, bullies, and troublemaking gangs he had seen.

Simon: In my experience, jocks, bullies and troublemaking gangs would rather you stick around and let them kick your ass for shits and giggles.

I don’t know, most of the jocks I knew were actually pretty cool guys. They were still douchebags, mind, but I could stand to be around them for longer than a minute.

Simon: You got a hell of a lot luckier than I did, man.

When he finally reached the gates that lead into the forests, he found that Kaya was waiting for him. The young girl was leaning heavily on a wooden support and her injured ankle was tightly bandaged.

So she was just walking on her bum leg like it was nothing up until this point?

Simon: And now she needs a crutch. Shit, my mom had a broken leg at one point, and the way she walked on it, you’d have never known unless you asked her, because she refused to let herself be put out of commission. I mean, I know – Demonslayers are unusually strong, and Angelborn are more stupidly so, so I’m probably using a bad example – but Kaya sprained her leg, and it’s only now bothering her. What a wuss.

Aubrey: It could be that the adrenaline is finally wearing off.

Er, speaking from experience, no amount of adrenaline stops a sprained leg from hurting like a bitch. Not with me, at least.

He stopped as he stood in front of her, and asked, “What’re you guys doing here?”

Kaya smiled, “I wanted to say goodbye,” she then grabbed his hands in surprised and placed something in them, “I want you to have this so you’ll come back to this village again.”

He then opened his hand as he looked at what she had given him. It was a beautiful green crystal shaped like a dagger blade.

Why would you want him to come back?

AND WHERE DO YOU GET OFF GIVING HIM ASHITAKA’S DAGGER YOU BITCH?!

Simon: It’s official. I hate Kaya now.

He looked to her and smiled, accepting her gift, “It’s beautiful, Kaya,” but then he asked, “But I thought the laws forbid me from coming back here.”

Kaya frowned as she stated, “Do you think I care? You’re welcome here anytime you come back. Cursed or not!”

I’m pretty sure that’s liable to lose you your head, Kaya. Princess or not, the Emishi laws are pretty solid. And I’m not entirely sure that the princess had a say in it – the price? Sure. Village elders? Sure. Oracle? Sure. The princess? Not too certain.

He looked down at Kaya, and smiled, ‘She’s just like my sister back home. Stubborn and cute.’

Of course, her canon personality lists her more as a sweetheart, but this is Stone-Man85. “Canon” is that thing you shoot holes in pirate ships with in his world.

Paulo: I still have vivid memories of my first days with Captain Pendra aboard the Silver Rose, when we were beset by pirates and I had to learn cannon operation whilst ducking incoming fire because I had never seen time in naval combat before.

Aubrey: Fun times, right?

Paulo: Pfft, indeed.

“If it’s alright, I’d like to give you something too.” He reached into his jeans pockets and pulled out his Swiss-Army-Knife, “Here you go; I want you to have this.”

Oh. How… thoughtful of you.

Simon: Pretty fitting, for Alex. “Here, have this keychain accessory I bought at a gas station for two cents as a memento of the jackass I truly was.”

Well, now that you put it like that, yeah, that works.

“It’s so strange looking. What is it?” Kaya asked, eagerly taking the little red object in her hand.

A crappy little knife that you can barely even shave a cockroach with. You’re welcome.

Paulo: Quite like the one who gave it to her, is it not?

Very.

Aubrey: Alex is a crappy little knife you can barely shave a cockroach with?

Are you trying to tell me he’s not?

“It’s called a Swiss-Army-Knife,” Alex explained, “Those metal things on its side are different tools that you can pull out and use when you need them.”

Actually, that’s Swiss Army Knife. No hyphens.

And honestly, Kaya, you’d be better served using the impractical balisong-style extendable sword I came up with after seeing how Corvo Attano twirls his extendable assassin sword in Dishonored. At least that thing could actually do some damage; the dinky little knife Alex just gave you can’t even fucking pierce regular animal hide, let alone (God forbid) another Nago incident.

Paulo: “Balisong-style?”

You ever seen a balisong knife? Also called a butterfly knife? Well, the sword looks kind of like that:

Revel in my shitty drawing and chicken scratch handwriting!

Revel in my shitty drawing and chicken scratch handwriting!

The sword flips open like that, and then there’s a special trigger inside the hilt that you press once, and it extends the blade out to full length. You press and hold the trigger to retract the blade, and then flip the hilt shut over it, and then you can lock it shut with a little latch and hook it on your belt loop for easy carrying. It can be used as a large dagger or a short sword. Part of the reason that it’s impractical is because balisong blades are difficult to use on their own because of the flip-handle, and the blade is retractable, but still manages to retain efficient cutting edge and structure, which simply would not happen with real hollowed-out blade. And that’s just two examples.

And it still makes more sense than Alex’s tiny-ass knife.

Simon: That actually sounds really cool, if I’m being honest. Sucks that it’s impossible to make one that functions, though.

I know, I’d use the hell out of one.

Kaya’s large eyes gazed at the contraption as she pulled out the cork-screw. “Thank you,” she said with a giggle.

Corkscrew is one word, dumbass.

Also, saying Kaya has big eyes makes me think of a fish.

Furthermore, Kaya doesn’t behave like a little schoolgirl. Stop it.

But then she looked at him worried as she asked, “Are you sure that you’ll be alright alone?”

I sincerely hope not.

Aubrey: And nobody here disagrees with you.

I’d have claimed heresy and shot you if you did.

Alex replied with a shrug, “I’ll manage, though I don’t know how exactly. Having an ex-Marine for an uncle who trains you on survival is useful knowledge in the wild. And three years of martial arts training as an extra curriculum for school just to learn how to defend yourself.”

And we’ve all seen how much good that’s been doing you so far, which is exactly enough to not die but otherwise no good at all.

Simon: I find it hard to be impressed by any of this. I’ve done at least four years in fencing and kendo, and another six in survival training when my brother and Stratholme had the time, and then another seven years learning how to play piano, followed by my past year and counting of Demonslayer training. Whoop-dee-doo, you’re a three year red belt with an uncle who taught you survival techniques, so what?

Paulo: Likewise, from sunup to sundown every single day of my life over the course of about five years, I was taught everything a knight would need to know. What I did not learn in Page training, I was taught forcefully on the battlefield. That equates to somewhere around twenty-four years of training, from the time I was thirteen.

So, that would make you… Almost thirty-eight years old, wow.

Simon: You don’t look a day over twenty-five!

Paulo: I have been told that I hold my age well.

Aubrey, anything to add to the discussion of how Alex’s training isn’t ask that impressive?

Aubrey: Sixteen years of arcane training from the time I was four years old, and counting; twenty-nine years of self-defense, survival, and combat training; twenty-nine years working as Chief Arcane Advisor of the Siuland Order; eighteen years working as Chief Arcane Advisor of the Bellamay Order; six years of medical training; also, I’ve taken up cooking lessons. Currently, I can make a souffle stay puffed up for about two minutes before it caves in on itself. Progress!

So, those twenty-nine years of combat, self-defense, and being a high-ranking officer of two separate Demonslayer Orders are all the same time frame, right?

Aubrey: Yep. That’s what happens when you’re born a Demonslayer.

Simon: Cooking lessons, though?

Aubrey: Someone in the Stratholme family has to learn; we were all Demonslayers from the very beginning, so our meals were prepared for us when we had time to eat at all between missions. James might see differently, but I don’t plan on being that lazy for the rest of my life.

There’s nothing wrong with taking initiative. Now let’s get back to the fic, I feel like we’ve bragged enough about our accomplishments.

He chuckled, “But then again, I don’t know it’ll be enough now that I’ve been thrown seven centuries in the past. So I guess I really don’t know what to expect.”

I can give you a brief run-down: Everybody is a fighter of some sort. Many are professional warriors. You’re as likely to run into a guy with a sword as you would be to run into a Buick parked by the sidewalk. The animals you’ll encounter are far more deadly than the ones you’re used to. Oh, and gigantic animal-gods are everywhere. Two in particular are going to be factoring massively in the events to come.

So have fun with that, kid.

Simon: But hey! At least it isn’t demons!

Aubrey: Maybe.

Simon: No guarantees.

Paulo: Really, it would be best for you to just keep your sword at the ready at all times. Perhaps get some practice with it as well, while you are thinking about it.

Kaya’s smile returned as she shrugged as well, “No, I suppose don’t know either.” She then bowed respectably, “Good luck, Alex. No matter what comes to pass, you will forever live on in our memories and our hearts.

*Villager* “Have I ever told you about that… that kid, uh… Apple, I think the name was? Yeah, he was an idiot. Don’t even know WHY we let him hang out with us.”

And you are always welcome here in our village.”

Simon: Not a good idea.

Alex was completely thrown off balance by Kaya’s words of kindness, and felt his throat tighten.

Paulo: If it takes merely the strength of words to unbalance him, I can say with certainty that the boy would meet his swift end by my blade, should we ever cross paths in combat.

Simon: Ditto.

Aubrey: I third that, and I don’t even use swords.

The best I can manage to fake with a sword would barely even faze a novice swordsman, and I could still take Alex on. Come at us, fuckboy.

Alex bit his lip and locked eyes with the young Amishi Princess. Thank you,” he said softly, “… for everything.” He then turned and walked through the gates.

Kaya stood and watched, along with Ji-san as he walked and stood at Kaya’s side, in total silence as the young outlander for the future waved goodbye to them and disappeared into the darkness of the forest.

“No, Alex Killian… ” Kaya said as a small tear fell from her eyelid as she smiled sadly, “Thank you for everything.”

Simon: Anybody else feel like they just ingested ipecac reading that?

Can you contact diabetes from badfics?

Aubrey: I need some bloody mouthwash, now.

Paulo: I never realized one could make sweetness taste so vile.

Author, there’s such a thing as being too sappy, and after all the shit I just read, even that small amount of sappiness was too much.

Next Chapter: The Power Unleashed; Terrified of Yourself

Simon: I’m only terrified of myself because my soul contains a being far beyond any mortal being alive on the power scale, and if I piss that guy off, he’s liable to self-destruct me.

Hesperus, via telepathy: I should like to think that I would be more merciful than that, young Simon.

Simon: So would I, but then I remember that you’re the guy who, while in control of my body, forced my powers to swell to a point where I caused a literal supercharged shockwave that dislodged and disintegrated like six hundred demons who tried burying me under a dogpile. So, honestly, who the fuck knows what you might do?

Paulo: That you have that amount of strength somewhere within you that can be accessed as an unstoppable weapon instills fear of you in me.

If it’s any consolation, Simon can only do that when Hesperia is calling the shots, and he usually gets wiped out as a result, so it’s not like he could really threaten you with explosive disintegration at any point.

Aubrey: Honestly, I forgot Hesperia was even in there until just now. Rather puts a damper on my plans to kick Simon’s ass for going against lockdown protocols, because I’d also be beating up a really powerful angel.

Hesperus: On the contrary, Madam Hist; though young Simon may come to harm, I will remain undamaged.

Aubrey: OH REALLY?!

Simon: Gee, thanks for defending me, asshole!

Hesperus: I did not conjoin my being with your soul to provide you an easy escape from reprimand, young Simon.

Well, looks like things are about to get violent here, so I guess now is as good a time as any to sign off.

Thanks for reading, folks, and stay tuned for the next chapter! We finally get out of the EMISHI village and start heading west, where the story happens! In the meantime, I’m SC, and on behalf of Sir Paulo Rori, Simon Bellamay III, Miss Aubrey Hist and last-minute addition, Hesperia, Light of the Evening Star, I’ll see you next time!

…What, did Aubrey decide to wait until-

Simon: OH GOD THE PAIN!

Paulo: No she did not.

Hesperus: She chose to wait only until you had finished your salutations, Master SC.

Aw, well that was nice of her.

~~~

*I changed the name of the world Simon was taken to after becoming a Demonslayer because I realized that what it was named previously sounded way too much like “Auldrant”, and I didn’t want to rip off Tales of the Abyss. Also, I realized that I’ve been calling Hesperus the wrong name – Hesperia is one of the Hesperides, who are the DAUGHTERS of Hesperus.

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95 Comments on “1089: Legendary Adventurers, Futuristic Saviors – Chapter Four, Part Three”

  1. SC says:

    Author comment: I just realized that I made two different backstories for Aubrey – that she was born a Demonslayer, and that she and get brother James were brought into the life. To clarify, they were both born Demonslayers – I’ll just use the excuse that they were too young to be brought into the life when they were little tykes, yeah.

  2. Herr Wozzeck says:

    “But the lad saved Princess Kaya’s life and fought the Demon by himself,” Ji-san retorted rubbing his injured arm gently, “We should be grateful to him for what he’s done.”

    Not that this stopped you from exiling your own prince in the source materials, but whatever, you gotta suck the Stu’s dick, right?

    • SC says:

      Can’t really exile him if he’s not part of the club to begin with, but I still don’t see why they’re pandering to his ego.

  3. Herr Wozzeck says:

    The Oracle smiled at the outlander as she addressed him, “I suppose there is much you must know. Very well, let us begin…”

    Oh no, no, please no! Anything but–

    Minutes Later

    *flops back*

    Oh thank fuck!

  4. Herr Wozzeck says:

    He cocked an eyebrow and gave her a very skeptical look. “And I’m sorry if I’m being insulting, but all because a few shiny rocks say so?”

    *BAM*

    If you’re saying sorry for being insulting, don’t be insulting!

    We’re supposed to hate this douche, right?

  5. Herr Wozzeck says:

    For once, I’m with Alex. You literally just told him that he could very easily go right back in the hole he came out of and end up back home, no trouble. What, then, is obligating him to stick around, if he isn’t blocked off?

    Because destiny!

    *waves hands in front of him*

  6. Herr Wozzeck says:

    Simon: Whoa, back the fuck up. This fic has a wiki?

    Made by the author himself, no less.

    And I was the unlucky soul who was first told about it. Also by the author himself, no less.

    • SC says:

      Aubrey: …How DO you shove your head that far up your own arse?

      I’d ask the author, but I’d like to get further into the riff before I drop the bombshell on him that he’s an egocentric idiot.

      • Herr Wozzeck says:

        Yeah, pretty much. Like, maybe twenty chapters in.

      • SC says:

        Would totally suck to get this riff yanked out from under me prematurely because I went and pissed the author off before I was comfortably enough through the riff to risk it.

      • GhostCat says:

        That’s why you should always have back ups.

      • SC says:

        I mean, it’s no problem for me to copy down every chapter and save them all in a file for when I’m ready to riff them. Frankly, I’m not sure why I’m not doing that.

      • Herr Wozzeck says:

        Well, don’t worry about that. I’ve saved it on a PDF somewhere. Copy-pasting it onto a word doc is going to cause all sorts of wonky formatting problems, but I have the fic in full.

      • SC says:

        I backed up the chapters individually into my word document editor, so if the PDF doesn’t work out I’m still covered.

  7. Herr Wozzeck says:

    According to what I’ve inferred from reading the Legendary Adventurers, Futuristic Saviors wiki, Hanyō can be classified as a weird mix between Magical Girl, super sayian, and organic gundam unit.

    Of course it is. ‘Cause why have an interesting story when you can have an awesome dudebro coolness story with no tension and an annoying twat for a main character?

  8. Herr Wozzeck says:

    It will halt the spreading of the curse and safeguard your soul. But there is a downside. The band was created from the essence of the God that cursed you. Merging the essence with the curse has created an entity within the band, that has become a parasite to you.”

    Wait, so the God itself is trying to eat at you from the curse, and then you just decided to tack on the essence of the God itself to hold you back.

    Because that makes sense!

    *BAM*

    • SC says:

      I mean, I just tend to fudge up how my magic works in my stories, but even that’s territory I know better than to step into because of how stupid it is. Canceling out curse A with inflictor A’s essence isn’t how that works. If anything, the extreme close proximity between curse and inflictor SHOULD BE EXPEDITING THE CURSE AT BREAKNECK SPEEDS.

  9. Herr Wozzeck says:

    I can’t just go trekking across Feudal Japan. I probably wouldn’t last a single day out there,” he then looked away as he mumbled, “I was barely able to survive Junior high.”

    Ah yes, because Feudal Japan is totally the same thing as fucking Junior High. Don’t you know? The late Muromachi period was renowned for its schoolyard bullies who take your lunch money and give you wedgies and shit! Oh, and also call you “poopyhead”, and swear at you on Xbox Live ’cause they’re fucking idiots!

    *BAM*

    Dumbass.

    • SC says:

      I mean, that’s what I remembered, isn’t that what you remembered?

      • Herr Wozzeck says:

        I more remembered the fact that the teachers used to hand them all green slips for detention and shit!

      • SC says:

        They were called “referrals” in my junior high school, because “[color] slip” apparently didn’t get the point across.

  10. Herr Wozzeck says:

    This idiot can barely even hold to the movie canon, and you dummies still think he can hold to his own fic canon? You haven’t been in this riffing business long, have you?

    Linke, purty plz?

  11. Herr Wozzeck says:

    “Our people don’t have a true form of money, Lad,” Ji-san replied.

    *frown*

    When did this fic start having more to do with fucking Brigadoon than Princess Mononoke? For fuck’s sake, this guy sounds like Mr. Lundie!

  12. Herr Wozzeck says:

    “I mean, you and Kaya are practically the only ones giving me everything save for the kitchen sink.”

    Alex, do you want the kitchen sink? I mean, I know you get it later on anyway given what I’ve read on the wiki *shudder*, but holy shit, dude!

  13. Herr Wozzeck says:

    “I see your point, Nathan said, tying the pouch to a belt loop,

    Oh goddammit.

  14. SuperFeatherYoshi says:

    Why isn’t this one numbered?

  15. Herr Wozzeck says:

    A crappy little knife that you can barely even shave a cockroach with. You’re welcome.

    Unless it’s one of those super high-end Swiss Army Knives that can do literally anything. But this is Alex we’re talking about, the damn cheapskate.

    • SC says:

      Yeah, no, I’m pretty sure Stone-Man85 doesn’t even know those ones exist.

    • TacoMagic says:

      Depends on how you use the term. A true Swiss Army knife is actually not a bad gift as even a low-end one with only the blade, file, and scissors is like a $20 knife made out damn-good steel. Unfortunately the term has grown to no longer be unique the Swiss Army brand, so covers all the dollar a dozen Chinese-make folding knives you get at the gas station.

      Now, if it’s true Swiss Army and has the corkscrew attachment, you’re looking at a $30 knife at minimum.

      Wouldn’t be terribly useful as a knife in the way a larger multi-purpose knife is, but it’d be far, far more nimble than anything they would have ever seen before. A small Swiss Army knife would be amazing for finer work that they’d otherwise be hard-pressed to achieve with period tools. Things like making fish-hooks or sewing needles out of bone.

      • SC says:

        Pay no heed to the thumbs down this comment got, I missed because I’m like barely awake at the moment.

      • SC says:

        Okay, more awake now.

        I do remember even saying myself that the true, honest-to-God Swiss Army Knives are like, as high quality a multi-purpose knife as you can get, and can even be the size of a small sword depending of the manufacturer (what was it, like two feet that I read they could get up to?), so yeah, if it had been a legitimate one of those, I’d eat my hat for talking shit.

        But, let’s be reasonable, here. They only issue those TO THE SWISS ARMY.

        And I still very highly doubt that Alex knows of any other types of Swiss Army Knife that aren’t the shitty gas station ones.

        I suppose, if she can’t find any other use for it, Kaya could always make a little necklace out of it and just wear it around like a fashion statement.

      • TacoMagic says:

        You can buy Swiss Army knives; they’re sold by Victorinox. Hell, you can even buy the full-blades from them.

        They’re rather expensive, so you just don’t see them very much these days. People would rather have the 25 cent key holder than a $30 utility tool. And their full knives are just crazy-expensive. Awesome, but expensive. I only own one of those and even then I bought it used.

        They also got edged out quite a bit by Leatherman in 90s, so most of their US market dried up and hasn’t really recovered since then. Which I can understand, I’d rather have a Leatherman on my belt than a Swiss Army in my pocket.

        Granted, I usually have both and a full-fold, but that’s a different story.

        But I agree, it’s highly unlikely Alex would have a real Swiss Army knife rather than a Chinese knock-off.

      • SC says:

        On another note, however, I would totally get a legitimate Swiss Army if I was able. The full size ones probably look really cool, if Google image search is any indicator.

      • Herr Wozzeck says:

        And now the timeline has been borked irreparably. Thanks, Alex-Stu.

      • SC says:

        Meh, probably not. I give that knife like a month’s regular use before it breaks and Kaya goes back to the usual stuff.

  16. Herr Wozzeck says:

    “No, Alex Killian… ” Kaya said as a small tear fell from her eyelid as she smiled sadly, “Thank you for everything.”

    Um… define everything, please? ‘Cause it doesn’t sound like he did all that much…

    • SC says:

      He saved her keister, bitched about the time period, insulted her people, insulted their ORACLE, and grudgingly decided that maybe he was wrapped up in the shit they said he was. Then he gave Kaya a shitty knife.

      I have no idea why she’s giving him a tearful farewell, AT ALL.

  17. neji7hyuga says:

    I wonder what’s up with people making unlikeable Mary Sue and Gary Stu characters. I mean, one would think that if one wanted people to read their story, they would make sure their character was likeable…

    I mean, there’s a difference between getting character development and going from a jerk to a likeable person (like what happened to Neji in Part 1- went from being someone many did not like at first to being very likeable after we found out what really happened in his past), and having a character who is a jerk and stays that way and keeps doing things and no one says anything about it (what likely happens in a lot of the fics in the library…)

    • Herr Wozzeck says:

      I think that, in this case, it really is “Rule of Cool” (as it’s called on TVTropes) overriding common sense. I.E., they think more about what’s cool and assume that everything else will fall into place, instead of trying to moderate the cool and thinking about what would actually work for the story.

      It’s something that happens quite a lot in fanfiction, honestly.

      • neji7hyuga says:

        That’s very likely.

        Sounds like “Rule of Cool” goes in with the balances thing. Have enough, and you could make a great story better. Too much, and your story becomes unbelievable and thus your readers will end up going “Are we supposed to believe that?!”

        Not surprised really that it happens a lot in fanfics.

      • Herr Wozzeck says:

        Yup. That pretty much hits the nail on the head.

      • SC says:

        Rule of Cool and Suspension of Disbelief are intrinsically codependent of each other: make a really believable story that’s boring to read, or a really cool story that nobody takes seriously, and the story’s sunk.

        Stone-Man85 has gone the latter route, and here’s the result.

        The fic is a jumbled mess; the characters are obnoxious and out of character; the “protagonist” OC is an unlikeable twerp that the author is trying to puff up as this really badass hero type when he honestly has none of the qualifications. I’m sure I’ll find more stuff to add to the list as we go on.

  18. GhostCat says:

    So, according to Wikipedia, the term “Hanyō” is not actually a thing in Japanese mythology.

    Ah, but it is a thing!

    :cracks open Japanese-to-English dictionary:

    汎用 (han’yō) – Noun, Suru verb, No-adjective; generic, general purpose, all-purpose.

    The name for these super-special hybrid things is literally the most generic name you could give them.

  19. Tie Dye Mage says:

    I don’t know about everyone else but my policy of dealing with cursed-anything is to study it, discover any weaknesses or cures and figure out how to use it against my enemies.

    ….

    And if all else fails, kill it with fire.

  20. Tie Dye Mage says:

    Simon: How do you cram your head that far up your own ass?

    The author’s a contortionist?

  21. Tie Dye Mage says:

    According to what I’ve inferred from reading the Legendary Adventurers, Futuristic Saviors wiki, Hanyō can be classified as a weird mix between Magical Girl, super sayian, and organic gundam unit.

    Hmm. The Stu is strong in this one.

  22. Tie Dye Mage says:

    Simon: This is ironic for me, in that Aubrey made up the grade “Q” to tell me just how bad at magic I am.

    Aubrey: The Q stands for “Quit while you’re behind.”

    I got one: T for Troll.

  23. TacoMagic says:

    “Parasite? You mean like a symbiote?” Alex asked

    If she had meant symbiote, she should have said symbiote! They aren’t the same, numbnuts!

  24. CrunchyRaptor says:

    “The boy got this curse by defending our village and saving the life of our princess.”

    Thus, the obvious remedy for the curse is to lay waste to the village and eat the princess. Or “Monday” as I like to call it.

  25. TacoMagic says:

    One of the coolest things is watching fresh Naan being baked in the correct Tandoori style:

  26. CrunchyRaptor says:

    Simon: I find it hard to be impressed by any of this. I’ve done at least four years in fencing and kendo, and another six in survival training when my brother and Stratholme had the time, and then another seven years learning how to play piano, followed by my past year and counting of Demonslayer training. Whoop-dee-doo, you’re a three year red belt with an uncle who taught you survival techniques, so what?

    Paulo: Likewise, from sunup to sundown every single day of my life over the course of about five years, I was taught everything a knight would need to know. What I did not learn in Page training, I was taught forcefully on the battlefield. That equates to somewhere around twenty-four years of training, from the time I was thirteen.

    Aubrey: Sixteen years of arcane training from the time I was four years old, and counting; twenty-nine years of self-defense, survival, and combat training; twenty-nine years working as Chief Arcane Advisor of the Siuland Order; eighteen years working as Chief Arcane Advisor of the Bellamay Order; six years of medical training; also, I’ve taken up cooking lessons. Currently, I can make a souffle stay puffed up for about two minutes before it caves in on itself. Progress!

    Ahh, my youth. Three years avoiding the machinations of both my mother and siblings toward my untimely demise followed by fifty years of intense gene therapy and tutelage under Darth Cognus. Then nine-hundred-odd years ruling over a modest sector of space wielding only fear as my weapon.

    *happy sigh* Memories.

    • SC says:

      A raptor just trumped all three of my characters, while still making more sense than Alex. How’s that for irony.

      • TacoMagic says:

        It only counts as a trump if it’s true. And, honestly, I stopped trying to figure out when Crunchy’s telling the truth about halfway through Raptor and I.

        But, Crunchy’s about 1,200 years old if you ignore the 95 million years worth of time-travel, so at least the timeline is mostly consistent with that… provided we don’t ask too many questions about that missing 250 years.

      • SC says:

        We’ve learned not to ask those questions.

        Not since The Incident.

    • GhostCat says:

      :nudges Ishi:

      Well?

      “Well, what?”

      Don’t you have some quaint little anecdote about your training? Grueling hours slaving over a churn while learning the zen of butterfat? The disturbing origins of your leech fetish? That sort of thing.

      “Apologies, but nothing of that nature has occurred. One’s training was quite proper. But one did attend a sleep-away summer camp once.”

      …And?

      “It was a very pleasant experience.”

      :sighs: Where’s Gumdrop? Maybe he has a good story about his training.

      “One was not aware Dragon-kun underwent formal training.”

      …Dammit, you’re right. I usually just point him at the problem and hope for the best.


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