Finding The Sword

July 06, 2016:

May and other members of Primal Force travel to China to retrieve the practice blade that marked May.

China

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NPCs: None.

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Plot:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

After the discussion about what might be needed for this ritual, realizing that a decades-old scar on her arm and the practice weapon that put it there might be crucial components, Agent May started the planning to return to China to try and acquire said weapon. Getting approval to travel is easy enough, though they'll have to do so either via ley line or commercial airlines because blatant SHIELD presence might not go over so well, especially not at a highly revered and very public shrine.

Finally, they get the go-ahead, and May gathers who she can to accompany her. She's privately glad that both Jesana and Zee will be there, even if she took a moment to warn the former to be on her absolute best behavior. She even insisted that the Coyote-kin wear more … conventional clothing. Jeans and a t-shirt and shoes, please. Or a skirt at least knee length and midriff covered if the jeans are that objectionable.


Leylines, commerical transport or Air Zatanna. May had also given Zee similar dressing instructions, and she'd mostly complied. All black leather, of course, but her limbs and midriff are covered.

When the group is gathered, she teleports them to edge of the temple grounds. It's disrepectful to just 'arrive'. The walk up to the main building takes a while, and the young mage speaks to her companions. "May was telling me, Jes, that the weapon is a practice one and it will be hard to find the one that made the scar. We might be at this a while." They'll have to do some tests, of course.

As they approach, the front doors open wide and they're greeted by a older man in saffron coloured robes. "Young dragon. It has been many years. Namaste…"


Jesana doesn't show any sign that she's a little worried about the best behavior thing. That can be a problem when there aren't two ancient immortal beings trying to subert her Will and soul. She's dressed as if she's prepared for this though. May needs them and dammit she's going to try her hardest to do whatever is asked.
So it isn't jeans or a skirt but black business slacks flat-heeled dress shoes and hose, a dark blue dress shirt and matching black suit jacket. She's soooo uncomfortable and this stuff cost more than she spends on clothes in six months but she looks like a young business woman and not.. herself. Maybe it's still showing that shes still pretty embarrased over the last time she saw her friends, the end of the battle and her subsequent flee in shame. She's unusually quiet during the walk up to the Temple but seems alert as ever. "Well. I mean I might be able to scent it but.. like, how long has it even been? And if it was used a lot since.. Yeah actually I probably can't but I'll try." She quiets again as they approach the Elder.


"It's been over twenty years. If you can pick it out by scent, I will be amazed." And then they're at the gate and the monk greets them. In English. Siiiiiiiigh. But, propriety must win out, so May offers the man an entirely proper and respectful bow. "Namaste, Elder. It has been many years." She's waiting for the peanut gallery to start in and already mentally muttering.


Returning the bow, Subhuti, regards the group. "You are always, daughter, as are your guests but I must ask what brings you here." Gesturing, he steps out of the way to let the trio in. The building is ornate with gently sloping roofs that 'tick' up at the edges.

"I was once told that the roofs are like that so the gods may rest on them." Zee murmurs, looking around as they walk. Whether that's true or not, she really has no idea, but it's a nice story.


Jes kinda squints at May. How old is she? Not something the demigod will wonder aloud for sure and while she'd love to be all amazing, and could easily do that if the weapon had been say, sitting in a case collecting dust for twenty years, Jes doubts that's true. I mean what kind of practice weapon even lasts that long?
It takes her a moment to realize the Elder just greeted them in English and Jes blinks. She wishes the Dragon's people did that more often. It'd make her life so much easier. While it might seem like a great opportunity and something she'd normally do, her dad was old fashioned and one of the few things he taught her was manners. A gentleman's manners. She'd never ask a woman their age. You just, do not do that. Especially not if you want to get or remain in their good graces. If she can manage to catch that Elder alone however… Jesana smiles. A friendly, innocent smile that she probably spent alot of time practicing if it isn't some ingrained skill related to being a Trickster's daughter.
She eyes the roof at Zee's comment but wonders.. 'Gods, or Dragons?' "It's a beautiful building and grounds."She has no idea what to say about the reason for their visit and so looks to May.


Melinda May falls into step with Subhuti, her own dark blue shirt of black jeans and sensible ankle boots (the jacket and its array of concealed weapons notably left behind) similarly contrasting with the saffron robes of the elder. "I was telling my friends Jesana and Zatanna," she indicates them as she names them, "about my training here, and they were curious about the scar I acquired." She pushes up the sleeve of her shirt to show the incomplete brand-scar to the monk, suspecting he'll remember it.


The Elder nods to the two women. "Zatanna is known to us, even here." his eyes, incredibly bright for his years, settle on Jesana "And those who commune with the earth are always welcome."

Looking at the scar, there's a hint of a smile "Ah yes, the Young Tiger was proud the day he managed to best you. You didn't give him another chance after that."

Those eyes fix on Mays and he lets the silence draw "Still. That doesn't answer why you are here."


Melinda May tries to think of a better way to answer this, but… she can't. "Nu-Wa has tasked me with repairing the Pillar of Heaven. The weapon that caused this scar may be an important component in the spells to complete the repairs." God, does she sounds as completely insane as she thinks she does? She's talking about myths like they're real.


There are no guns on her person but Jesana does have several small and thin knives carefully concealed under her clothing. She'd let Jyoti dress her, he's good at the expensive fancy outfits and certainly didn't seem to mind picking this stuff out. Or strapping the blades to her skin.
She nods in response to May's remark and glances at the scar. That's even completely true. She is curious how that happened, who did and if they're still alive. The little mark hidden beneath her clothing pulses and she feels the strong desire to hunt that person down and… Jesana's eyes narrow slightly. She's not going to do that. She's going to behave. Behave and hope that frozen ancient bastard chokes on her daggers until the end of all time. Stupid thing probably shattered them though and those had been-shit. People are talking! Jes smiles at the Monk. "I thank you for your welcome, Wise One." Tiger? A coyote could beat a tiger… if she were clever… and three times the size of an average coyote… Jes ducks her head respectfully and takes a moment to quiet her mind. Or at least turn it to less trouble inducing thoughts. She actually manages to come up with what she thinks is a plausible reason for being there when May tells the truth.
Jes blinks again. Okay, she can roll with that. If the Monk can sense her connection to the earth then he probably can sense the rest. May does not sound crazy to the man, Jes is betting. Still she'll wait a few moments more before saying anything else. He could surprise her.


Subhuti looks at May, considering. "Nu-Wa. That is a great honour." gesturing he leads them to the practice area. A large outdoor area surrounded by undercover verandahs. Fires in braziers flicker merrily. Along the walls are the practice weapons… there's a lot. "If you can find it, it is yours. What can you tell me of this ritual?"

This might be an opportunity they'd not considered.

Zatanna hands May a small wooden box, one sealed with a Nordic Rune. Inside are the five coloured jade stones that so like her, clearly Zee thinks these will be helpful.

"Jes, use your magic. Carefully. See what you can sense." If they split up, they might work a little quicker.


Jes smiles and nods. Scenting isn't magic actually but.. that kinda gives her an idea. Sometimes she just finds who or what she wants simply because he Will is so strong it takes her to them. Or she gets really lucky, of course osmetimes that luck is bad but.. Jes closes her eyes and spins around a circle.
Her voice murmurs softly in her native tongue. "I am Coyote's Daughter, for good or ill I do as Will." And right now she wills to grab the right weapon. The blade that cut May. It's here and she can find it. Jes stops spinning and turns towards the far wall, heading towards a seemingly random spot. Fenris, but this will look stuupid if she fails.


Melinda May accepts the wooden box but doesn't try to open it. Instead she spends a few moments explaining the ritual as they've figured it out thus far, and very much aware of how closely it parallels the stories of Nu-Wa. She's not paying close attention to what Jesana's doing, so she isn't doing anything stupid to May's eyes.


Nodding at Mays story, the Elder looks interested and glances at the box in her hand. "Burning the reeds may be symbolic about renewal." he murmurs to May, watching Jes wander this and that. "Perhaps, the location of this weapon is part of the trial. A way of preparing you for the task. Your friend seems to think that box has meaning, maybe you should use it…"

Jes' will leads to her to a sword rack, several of them really, on the East Side of the courtyard. So many practice blades are stored there, and they all look the same. Something might tell her that she needs May's help here.


Melinda May nods and bows to Subhuti again. "Thank you, Elder. As always, your wisdom and guidance is invaluable." She then turns to look at where Jesana is wandering, and after taking a breath opens the box. Okay, stones, please be helpful here. This is all getting way past normal SHIELD stuff, and May loses her patience quickly when she's out of her depth.


Jes is a relieved that she at least seems to have found the right area. Part of her wants to be a bit disgruntled, there are so many, she's all for recycling but damn, don't these people ever throw anything away?? Though, then they'd never find this thing. "I think it's over here. I'm just.. not sure about more than that."
It has been a long time and these weren't sitting in a room or case unused all this time. She hadn't thought htey'd be that lucky. Jes turns a bit as she feels the stones when May opens the box. They have a sort of sound or, sense. It gets louder when May handles them. It's a good idea. Her will is strong but it's far from absolute and they're in China. In a temple that has nothing to do with her Father or her heritage. It makes sense that she couldn't find the sword exactly but it doesn't lessen the sting. Jes does not like to fail.


The stones do respond to May, Zatanna is used to that now. They buzz a little, resonating, as they spin into the air, circling around moving inexorably to where Jesana stands.

Subhuti simply looks between May and the stones. "I see…" he murmurs and steps back. Not one to interfere with the divine.

Eventually, the stones settle in front of three swords. "Use your pendulums, to determine which one it is." Zee speaks quietly from the behind them. "May, focus your will through yours. Jes, channel power through yours to Mays."


Melinda May pulls her pendulum out from under the neckline of her shirt and looks at the three swords the stones have narrowed down. Again treading down an unaccustomed path, the tries to focus on the pendulum, then on the pendulum indicating which of the three swords was the one that burned the partial dragon-image into her arm so many years ago. She takes a step closer to the dulled practice blades, reaches a hand toward them without any real intention of reaching for one in particular. She figures her hand will touch the correct one based on the pendulums. Hopefully.


Jesana seems to wilt a bit as she watches the Monk step back. Wise man for sure. If only she could stop interfering with divine things. It's just, they keep pissing her off! Her Father had been right. She reacts poorly to being angered. She nods at Zee and closes her eyes, touching her pendulum with one hand where it rests beneath her clothing.
She doesn't immediately channel to May, first sending to her bonded and then borrowing from him as well. Anyone able to see it would notice two colors flowing from Jes to May. Warm brown tinged with a strange, fel green. "You can do this, May. I know it." Jesana murmurs encouragingly.


As Mays hand reaches out, the scar starts to throb. It's not painful, uncomfortable sure, but not painful. The throbbing gets stronger near one of the swords and eases off as her hand moves away from it. That's the one that she needs.

For Jes the sensation echoes back through the pendulums… but all she to do at the moment, is keep that energy flowing, slowly and easily.


After a moment of hesitation, May takes down the sword that causes her scar to react the most strongly and turns to carry it back to Subhuti. As she does so, she turns the practice blade until the dragon emblem etched into the metal is visible. "I think we have found the blade, Elder."


Knowing May is already uncomfortable, Jes would take that sensation away if she could but, it's not a thing she's learned yet and this is hardly the time for one of her experiments. Also, the last time she accidently did something magical is still fresh in her mind. Jesana blushes deeply. It might have only lasted a second but a second is a freaking eternity when you think you just woke the world serpent because your own God's arrival scared the holy hell out of you.
It's much easier to stop thinking about all that and just keep her focus on sending the power to May. The coyote demigod grins. Hey, they're doing this, she hasn't screwed up and only owes about two bucks to Frederick's cursing jar. She'd honestly not this was going to be possible without the drugs Jyoti picked from her pockets. Pointy eared bastard. Dammit, now its three.. shi- auughh! four..five dollars. "Better than yesterdays one hundred and sixty five…and a half." Jes mutters softly. Then louder. "I knew you could do it!"


As Mays hand wraps around the sword, it starts glowing and the five coloured stones return to the box. "So it seems, Young Dragon." Sbuhuti smiles and gestures to the hilt. Around the dragon emblem are five empty sockets.

"Well done, May and Jes." Zee joins the group, watching the sword glow but saying nothing. "My thanks to you, Subuhti." she murmurs as she inclines her head in a small bow. "If there's nothing else, we must be off."


Melinda May looks at the empty sockets in the practice blade. Go figure. She nods to Zee, then bows respectfully to Subuhti once again. "Thank you, Elder." She then looks to Jesana before turning her attention back to Zee. She's ready to leave.


Jes inclines her head respectfully at the Monk once more. "Thank you." Then she moves up to May and Zee's side. She knows this magic stuff isn't so easy for May. She seems to prefer dealing with the physical world and Jesana really understands that. She put off any talk of her learning to use her connection to the earth or anything else magical for a long time. It was so much easier to try and carry on as she'd been with what she knew and understood and was comfortable with. "You did it though. And now it's time to go." And she's ditching these clothes to roll around on the ground the second they are away from here because really, she's never worn this much during the summer in her life and they itch! Jesana beams. She was good… uhoh May's looking at her. God, how did she know!? Seriously. Jes smoothes her suit jacket down and tries to look innocent. Clearly she's ready too.


"Then lets away…" Zee murmurs her teleport spell and they all disappear, leaving Subuhti in the courtyard on his own.

"Did she find it, Elder…" a little red mushu peers over the edge of the building "Did the daughter of dragons find the sword?" His voice is sped up, of course.

"That she did my little friend. The Young Dragon passed this test and well. She has good support with her too."

"Oh good. Nu-Wa will be pleased."

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