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Previous chapters:https://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=Heretic%20Cultivator%20Quest
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You are the beneficent, sagacious, glamorous and more or less benevolent Wild Princess, Huanliuxue (欢流血, Happy Bloodshed/ Happy to Shed Blood), Heiress apparent to the sealed legacies of Demonic Beasts and the most regal and beautiful amongst cats. Fulfilling your duties as Sect Head, Teacher and foremost elder (besides you adoptive mother, The toad witch) amongst the heretical Palace of Natural Laws (宫殿的野生彝宪, Gōngdiàndīyěshēngyíxiàn) sect, you traveled to the underworld in the company of your ghostly serpent student, Yùjījiǎo (Jade Horn, 玉 犄角), to figure out how one without a body to cultivate Qi within, lacking Meridians, Spiritual Roots and everything else require to absorb, containing and refine Qi, could cultivate, not wishing the unfortunate girl to be left behind by her peers considering her unique...handicap.

However, while you were searching a devilish bazaar for a trinket or scroll that could solve this quandary, you stumbled upon a strange, vanishing bookshop. You aren't sure what happened when you stepped past its doors, but you emerged with four strange scriptures. One of which seeming to be the answer to Yujijiao's plight, the Manual titled The Famine of Breath (饥饿的气, Jī'èdīqì). However, the other prizes you left with, were simply strange. One seemed drawn from the fable of the man devouring sword, detailing the creation of intelligent steel, another a record of your history and techniques, constantly updating itself with blood red ink, and the last...was a letter.

Which when opened revealed the last will and testament of the first Demonic Beast betrayed by the heavens and slain by their fellow Daoists, when all Magical Beasts were named a product of Demonic cultivation, which revealed numerous delectable secrets, such as the fact the two storied enemies and legendary rivals, The Five Colors Emperor and the Supreme Devil Mind, were in fact once lovers and even married and that the Ling Clan are the descendants of this supremely controversial and colorful pairing and thus descendants of a demonic lineage. But, more importantly than that, the letter, when it reached its end and showed you the depressing final thoughts of its writer, spat out a dust covered Manual wrapped in green dyed leather into your arms with enough force to nearly throw you to the ground.

Stunned, and hearing the moth spirit who brought you to the parlor of the artisans whose services you were waiting for when you opened the letter, you shook your head and then waved the Manual through the air to clean away the dust, creating a dense, choking cloud of it around you and the gates leading into the manor of the weaver, Anjing-Yinshi (安靜-隐士, Quiet Hermit)

Wiping the stubborn dust that refused to be removed with the back of your hand, you saw the name of this most ancient of Manuals.

Beast Saint Doctrine (野兽圣教理, Yěshòushèngjiàolǐ)

Cont
>>
>>5544110

In spite of feeling an almost religious sense of awe just from holding the object of your distant inheritance, you had no time to study it or even open it past the cover. Since you had only managed to clean it enough to read its name when the moth spirit came up to your side

"Anjing isn't patient today, she wishes to see you immediately. It seems we had the ill fortune of interrupting her sleep and she is in a somewhat sour mood" The girl meekly explained, not wishing to demand you to move out of fear of offending you "So if you would deign to her request and follow me to her studio, so the two of you may discuss business? She will not leave the comfort and safety of her home, you see. Otherwise I would have asked her to meet you at the gate, and thank you for your generous purchase and continued patronage, as one should do when a new, wealthy customer falls into their lap like a meat bun falling from the sky!"

"Oh, well I didn't even think I'd get to meet this reclusive artist directly, at all, and would just have to hand you a list of my desires!" You shout cheerfully, patting the fretting moth on her fuzzy head "I'm overjoyed the artist herself is granting me an audience in her own abode. Spiders are territorial, so this shows her gratitude well enough on its own. Well, enough at least for me not to feel insulted and take offense, Heh-Heh-Heh"

The spirit nodded, but said nothing more as they guided you through the maze of webs and bones that formed the garden in front of the manor, and then through the labyrinth of hallways and rooms, with peeling green wall paper and defaced portraits and web and dust ruined landscape paintings drooping from the rot and water logged walls. The air was damp and very unpleasant, and the rugs squelched under your feet. And judging from the feeling of that wetness, you knew they weren't soaked in water and burdened mildew alone. The place stunk of decaying flesh, rotten wood and wet dust, and every where you looked, hordes of spiders of all sizes and types scurried about, so thickly they seemed almost like a single organism surging through the cracks and crevices of the walls and floors.

The corpses and bloody bones hanging from the ceiling by webs, grew fresher the deeper you went into the manor just as the manor itself became more well maintained and cared for. Until you reached a lit room, fire light pouring through the paper screen separating it from the rest of the bone strewn maze of winding halls and oddly sectioned rooms. Two demons, still living and squirming, were bound to the wall on either side, lanterns held in their hands and deep bite marks in sides, oozing pale greenish white ichor and coagulated blood.
Cont
>>
>>5544112

And behind the paper screen, a gargantuan shadow moved, clicking chitinous limbs stretched out, and mandibles snapped as Lady Spider Demon revealed herself...as much as she was comfortable doing. She remained behind the screen, her shadow facing side ways as she straightened her eight limbs and lifted up her head.

The moth bowed and scurried away, leaving you alone before the lady of the house. Sighing, you decided not to press her boundaries and take on the quiet humiliation of sitting on the cushion set just in front of her room.

"M..my. My friend tells me you wished to place a custom o..order?' She squeaked shyly, sounding on the verge of suffering a panic attack. Immediately your mind leapt to Yuyi and you hand to bite the back of your knuckle to keep from laughing from the mental image of a giant spider with her face in place of its own

"That is why I've come here and disturbed your solitude" You say kindly bowing your head "I warn you though, its going to be a rather large order...Uh, well that's actually putting it as lightly as I can. I love your work, and the fabric you use, so I wish to empty your stores of silk, cloth, fur and leather"

"O..oh! She said you were a w..well to..to do" She stammered "That's wonderful! I've been meaning to fix thi..this palace up...it fell into a bit of disarray before I moved here, you see. This is truly...w..wonderful. Please! State you d..demands"

"I might be a beast by nature, but I know artists such as yourself don't like be leashed to another's vision. While some of what I'm looking to buy will need to be made precisely to my order, the rest you have my permission to indulge your creativity and alter the designs whims" You say, and briefly think the girl is dying or choking on a previous meal before you realize she is crying with joy

"C..continue!" She shouted, or more spat, like if she only just remembered the two of your were talking business "St..starting with what needs to made exactly as you specify"

"Well, I am the head of a sect of cultivators. But we have no banners, even though I've already thought of and designed a fitting heraldry for it. And that's because, I refuse to have the symbol of my sects power be made of subpar materials and woven by novice craftsmen!"

"Do you..have a r..reference for this symbol? Or could you describe it to me?" She asked haltingly, like you'll yell at her for asking a necessary question

"Of course. I had a few robes adjusted to see how it'd look when worn" You say, tossing one of the robes you had borrowed from Lanfen over to the Anjing-Yinshi "And speaking of robes, I'd also like to order many Daoist robes, Red like my fur, and Pink as well, since it'd be boring other wise, and my hide has some spots of pink as well! And Sashes of the same color! Oh and Cloaks as well! And those will be the last of the ones you'll have to design to match my desires exactly!"
Cont
>>
>>5544117

"Oh..a.are those for you and your students?" She asked curiously, making small talk as she pulled examined the robe by holding it up with her two front legs

"Some of them will be, some will be for me, and I expect those ones to be of finer materials. However, I don't intend to set in place a dress code, always thought it was kind of cultish how the other sects make all of their disciples dress nearly exactly the same" You explain "Never liked conformity, you see. So, I'll tell you about my lovely students, their looks, personalities, their three beliefs, as much as you can stomach to hear so you can make the rest of their wardrobe as you think would suit them, as individuals"

"And t..their measurements and yours?" She asked giddily as her bulk shuddered from just how delighted she was to be paid to express her own ideas in her art for once, which did bring a smile to your face

"Of course, Of course!" you laugh, clapping your hands and sharing in her happiness "But, I'll do that after I tell you what else I want! I need dress! Two kinds. One extravagant, imperial fashion mixed with the fur of beasts to make a proper wardrobe for a princess of the wild like myself, complete with jewelry and accessories like any imperial princess would wear. Not a concubine! I intend to rule by my own authority after all! And a second of humbler but still fancy dress, made with a cheap but still good batch of silk. For a friend of mine. She is much less confident than I am, and would be scared to wear anything too daring or expensive, and make those in the usual fashion of girls, not from the yellow springs or heavens, just ordinary women, if you would"

"I...I see. Well that gives me quite a bit of freedom in how to design both of those sets of dresses, ther..there are quite a few different styles of imperial fashion and dress etiquette as you w..well know" She said happily as she audibly gulped "Uh..co..could you undress and come in, I ...I need to measure you to figure out how much silk I'll need to make your clothes"

"Of course, of course!" You say, slipping your new white, robes off of your shoulders "I'll have a pig spirit who owes me a favor deliver the measurements of my students, you might know him, he served the Crow King until...recent advents"

"Oh r..right, humans can't..li..live down here, I forgot!" She chattered back nervously "I..also didn't expect you to undress that willingly"

"What do I have to be ashamed of?" You asked boastfully, smiling smugly as you proudly sauntered forward "There's no part of me that isn't more beautiful than any of the stars in the sky, but before you look upon the work of art that is my body, I have one last item I wish to commission"

"Y..yes?" The now very flustered spider demon asked

"Make me armor from your silk. That can transform to fit my natural feline form and the one standing before you now, if its possible. If not, make it for my cat body" You say

The air in the room becomes heavy with tension
>>
>>5544125

"I will only give my silk if you give me a fortune enough to rebuild my home and pay off my parasites of brothers and sisters to leave me alone!" She snapped angrily

"Alright" You sneer, meeting her threat as a challenge "here! Twenty souls, undirtied by mortal sins and transgressions"

She then rolled over onto her back, her legs stiffening in the air as she fainted at the sight of all of the caged ghost lights you poured out of your Dimensonal gourd.

"I take it there'll be no problem then?" You tease, skipping up to her and tapping a finger on your chin, eyes aglow with mischief.

"Not at all!" She shouted happily, rolling back over to her side, looking up at you with eight pink eyes "I'd be happy to make it for you! Not like I'm using my silk for anything anyways! As soon as I get all the measurements, I'll have your clothes order done within a week at most! The banners, sashes, and cloaks will be done within three days time! And I'll personally buy the jewelry and accessories for your formal dresses! I wouldn't want to give my best customer anything but the best, after all! N..now please stand still, so I can get your measurements"

You grin ear to ear as she uses a piece of sticky silk to measure and record your limbs and sizes.

What do you do, now that your order is placed and you've found the answer to Yujijiao's plight, Huanliuxue?

>Go back to the mortal realm and hear the report of Siwang's and Fu's mission into the dusk marshes

>look for some trouble, to test out the basic martial strikes, stances and techniques in the Beast Saint Doctrine, to see if you can incorporate them in your own feline/ ghostly martial art (Martial Training. DC 60)

>Stay around, still nude, to chat with Anjing and try to get to know the skittish spider better, since her Yuyi like personality has made you rather fond of her, already.

>Steal some of Lady Spider Demon's silk and venom, to give to Feiqing to use to make deadly weapons and artifacts (Stealth Trial. DC 20) [Bad Karma]

>Write in
>>
>>5544127
>Stay around, still nude, to chat with Anjing and try to get to know the skittish spider better, since her Yuyi like personality has made you rather fond of her, already.

>Ask her for more info on her more vile brothers and sisters. You are looking to test some new skills against someone, and you may as well benefit your new friend in doing so. If not against her brothers and sisters, then perhaps some of their ill-tempered lackeys. (Martial Training. DC 60)

>Ask if you may sample some of her venom and bring back some of her unspun silk. Your own master is an alchemist of great skill, and you have learned much from her. Such materials will assist in our own ascent. Perhaps some of your cur may be used in trade? Perhaps she will be grateful enough to simply give it to you for asking so graciously.

General way I see it is we talk with her, ask about the silk and venom, and if she refuses then we roll on for a bit before cycling back to ask about beating up some demons that are troubling her. If she agreed to the silk/venom, it’s a favor for her being generous. If she refused, it’s a guilt trip. Either way, we earn favor and test our claws. Win-win.
>>
>>5544127
. . . how could you even suggest stealing from such an adorable creature Grandfather?

>Stay around, get to know her better
>Test out strikes, stances and techniques in the Beast saint Doctrine [dc 60]

I feel like we should do this swiftest. I also want to do it so that I can get a black BOLDED text outlining what the saint doctrine does so I can update the pastebin.
Then, once we've IMPROVED
>Return to the mortal realm to get our report.

Nothing else is really needed from hell. And Yuji can get to work cultivating.
>>
>>5544163
Martial brother is cunning. I'd not be opposed to testing our claws upon bastards.
>>
>>5544168
To clarify, I don't care about the venom or silk for our own uses. It's probably better to wait for her to warm to us naturally.

But her family, if she wants some of them roughed up, will be fantastic targets and further indebt her to us.
>>
>>5544163
Seems like a good plan to me, indeed why steal what you can buy, either with souls or for a favor of fraticide?

>>5544166
We will eventually need to find an auction for the soul of the emperor while the memory is fresh, but that can be delegated to piggy when he returns to deliver the measurements to spider-yuyi.

I advise caution however if mama spider were to object to a bit of killing
She might end up being stronger than the crow was.
>>
>>5544194
Caution is always great to have.
>>
>>5544193
Agreed actually. I’m not too invested in gathering materials, so I don’t care about stealing it. But I have no shame in asking! She may say no, but I think we’re at the point where she won’t throw us out.

>>5544194
And why buy what you can possibly get for free?

If I end up starting a fight with another demonic lord, I apologize for nothing. It’s just another notch in our legacy.
>>
>>5544242
Nothing against it actually, Demon lord tusslin' is a time honored tradition after all..
Just be prepared
Nosing around after her family may be a bit touchy but she probably needs to vent about it, besides speaking of families, was it ever told what happened to huan's?
Usually cats come in litters so were there any other around from hers? I don't remember.

And another question
What do the demons do with souls?
Eat them for power?
Torture for fun?
Just look at the pretty lights?

I'm asking because it seems to me like soul trafficking should logically have repercussions on karma but apparently not even pure souls are protected.

Kicking an orphan is bad karma but selling their souls to demons is not?
>>
>>5544127
>Chat with Anjing
>Test the Beast Saint Doctrine
It’s been far too long since we’ve gotten some training of our own.
>>
>>5544127
>look for some trouble, to test out the basic martial strikes, stances and techniques in the Beast Saint Doctrine, to see if you can incorporate them in your own feline/ ghostly martial art (Martial Training. DC 60)
>>
>>5544163
>>5544127
Ahh trips in hell always end up interesting. +1
>>
The last thread isn't archived
>>5544127
>Steal some of Lady Spider Demon's silk and venom, to give to Feiqing to use to make deadly weapons and artifacts (Stealth Trial. DC 20) [Bad Karma]
>>
>>5544127

>Go back to the mortal realm and hear the report of Siwang's and Fu's mission into the dusk marshes

Go back for now, check on our students and study ancient tomes. I'm also a bit nervous about Yuji dallying through hell by herself so we should get back to her quickly.
>>
>>5544488
https://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/2022/5501769/
It got archived a while ago because it was a victim of someone mislabeling threads on suptg and the owner/mods had to manually relabel it
>>
>>5544568
That explains it
>>
Right, updated our wealth tally.

Though I do have to ask >>5544488 why bother stealing from Lady Anjing when we plan to bust up her siblings. We can steal their venom from their still bleeding mouths.
>>
Y’know, I kinda wish we could find a way of making spider lady and Yuyi into pen pals. We’d need to teach Yuyi how to read and write, but it’d could be the start of a good relationship as they vent to each other about the assholes (family for Anjing, Huan for Yuyi) in their life, offer advice, and share bits of their professions.

All so we could inevitably introduce them somehow and see Yuyi scream at the giant spider that no doubt will wrap her up and eat her.

We are a benevolent princess. But we are still a cat, and thus find joy in the suffering of others.
>>
>>5544163
>>5544127

Support. Let's test our claws and maybe grab some useful materials in the process.
>>
>>5544127
>>Stay around, still nude, to chat with Anjing and try to get to know the skittish spider better, since her Yuyi like personality has made you rather fond of her, already.
>Go back to the mortal realm and hear the report of Siwang's and Fu's mission into the dusk marshes
>>
>>5544127
>>look for some trouble, to test out the basic martial strikes, stances and techniques in the Beast Saint Doctrine, to see if you can incorporate them in your own feline/ ghostly martial art (Martial Training. DC 60)
>>Stay around, still nude, to chat with Anjing and try to get to know the skittish spider better, since her Yuyi like personality has made you rather fond of her, already.
>>
>>5544127
Vote roundup. Not as needed as last time, but why not?

Votes - 11
aLZIAV+F
WONtuIio
dxhQ6mr0
7UgGYwfH
u7AhlJrf
lIgsNHcJ
nBVtJOwA
DLhMx1Xi
ZT4Lal/5
yPgfHj+G
oKzyjg0/

Stick around - 8
aLZIAV+F
WONtuIio
dxhQ6mr0
7UgGYwfH
lIgsNHcJ
ZT4Lal/5
yPgfHj+G
oKzyjg0/

>Look for trouble to test the manual - 8
aLZIAV+F
WONtuIio
dxhQ6mr0
7UgGYwfH
u7AhlJrf
lIgsNHcJ
ZT4Lal/5
oKzyjg0/

>>Ask Lady Anjing for a target, even if it’s her family - 5 (All these votes are implicitly a vote to look for trouble as well)
aLZIAV+F
WONtuIio
dxhQ6mr0
lIgsNHcJ
ZT4Lal/5

>Ask for her venom and silk as alchemic materials - 4
aLZIAV+F
dxhQ6mr0
lIgsNHcJ
ZT4Lal/5

>Go home - 3?
- WONtuIio (After we train and chat)
DLhMx1Xi (Immediately)
yPgfHj+G (After we chat)

>Steal venom, thread - 1
nBVtJOwA

All three votes for heading home mean it at different times. I’d guess only 1 vote truly counts as “head home right now”. The other 2 votes are after doing something else, which I feel is implicit after we do the other options anyway.
>>
>>5545153
Posting again to know which one is me.
And even if it's not as needed, it still helps to keep track. And makes so I don't need t do it later
>>
>>5544127 >>5545153
Count me in for the write in to
> Stick around Anjing
> Ask her for some of her silk and venom
> Offer to solve some of her troubles in exchange if she refuses, offer it anyway if she accepts. Look for trouble if she doesn't have any.
>>
Ending the vote now, tallying the result.

Stay around, still nude, to chat with Anjing and try to get to know the skittish spider better, since her Yuyi like personality has made you rather fond of her, already.:10

Look for trouble:9
-Ask her for more info on her more vile brothers and sisters. You are looking to test some new skills against someone, and you may as well benefit your new friend in doing so. If not against her brothers and sisters, then perhaps some of their ill-tempered lackeys.:6

Ask if you may sample some of her venom and bring back some of her unspun silk. Your own master is an alchemist of great skill, and you have learned much from her. Such materials will assist in our own ascent. Perhaps some of your cur may be used in trade? Perhaps she will be grateful enough to simply give it to you for asking so graciously.:6

Go back to the mortal realm and hear the report of Siwang's and Fu's mission into the dusk marshes:3

Steal some of Lady Spider Demon's silk and venom, to give to Feiqing to use to make deadly weapons and artifacts:1

So You'll try to get to know Heizhizhu Anjing-Yinshi better, since you've grown fond of the skittish spider swiftly, and ask about her parasitic siblings and offer to test your new techniques on them or their henchmen and ask if you may sample some of her silk and venom, perhaps in exchange for some of your fur or for dealing with her familial issues directly and with finality!

Update will arrive shortly

>>5545153
Many thanks, Junior!
>>
>>5544256
Various reasons, usually to use them as servants or trade them on, though some do torture/ eat them [Though they can and do reform afterwards, like how the ones Huan stole Qi from did]/ Display them as prizes.

And it isn't bad Karma cause the souls were already dead, and being traded is part of their punishment in hell before reincarnation. Its why sinner souls, which will stay longer and suffer more before reincarnating, are worth less than those who weren't bastards in life. Since they stick around longer, and tend to sell themselves into servitude to try and "Lighten" their punishment before reincarnation. A common commodity.

This is why the less evil/ wicked souls are worth more, cause its rarer to convince them to offer themselves to their service, and they aren't around long enough to be easily captured/ tricked into confinement. And usually they are put in birdcages/ jars cause they acquired debt or couldn't take life in Diyu

And that's why the Pious soul is much more valued than even those souls, since it is an extreme rarity. Same as the emperor's soul, though that one is worth big moolah cause, well, bragging rights for possessing the Son of Heaven and the status that will come from having him as a indentured servant for...well, a very long time

Anyways, figured I should answer this before I got to work on the intermediary update that leads to the martial training roll.
>>
>>5545657
Dog-pig Tianlong is going to be in the yellow springs until at least the next dynasty falls.

There is no way this bastard isn't the single most sinful individual of the past 4 generations, both directly and indirectly through his abuse of the power which led to the rebellions, and ALL the shit that came from that.
>>
"So, it would seem to me, Lady Spider, that you are something of a shut in. Judging by your nervous manner and your...shall we say apt choice of an art name? Your friend, the moth spirit, told me your rarely leave your house" You chatter, trying to strike up a casual conversation with Anjing-Yinshi, as the overside arachnid is surprisingly cute and her skittish manner reminds you of your Friend, Yuyi. Both of them kindle your maternal, protective instincts something fierce, since they just seem so helpless and in need of coddling and a guardian to protect them from all the ills of the way

"I..I don't like being in public. Spider demons are often squashed underfoot, its why we have broods larger than most other breeds of devils" She mutters ruefully, a darkness falling over her eight eyes that had been glittering like gemstones before "We're dangerous when we're grown, so the other demons make an effort to stomp us before we mature. This makes many of us cruel, sadistic even. Monstrous even amongst the natives of the netherworld. Feral, I..I'd say. Us devils are rarely personable, and the empathy mortals feel is al..alien to most, kindness is a weakness, selfishness and ambition a virtue, and ge..generosity a sin"

"Oh, so you're traumatized by your childhood, and an outcast because you're more...human than the rest of your peers. A cheerful child, despite her bruises and meekness" You say cheerfully, lifting up your arms for her to measure the width

"More like a spirit. Never met a human, so I cannot...cannot say I am like one" She says quietly "But its..its nice that someone thinks good things of me...besides my..my friend, I mean. Usually I..I'm called a freak be..because I'm not like everyone else, heartless and ..apathetic to anything besides myself or my b..buisness"

"Those bloodsucking, money grubbing siblings of yours, they have bullied you, haven't they?" You ask quietly, anger lurking in your gentle voice as sweet as the morning sun

"H..how could you t..tell, that's kind of creepy" Anjing mutters nervously

"It is my most austere and noble duty to protect the innocent children of the world, no matter what shape they take" You answer sweetly, though the smile you wear doesn't reach your eyes, which are filled with a cold malice "And to punish those who'd harm or torment them. I hate bullies and children killers, and think those who'd trample the young are the lowest amongst scum"

"Well, yo..you're right, my siblings...all my family are scum. Wild animals..m..more or less" She hissed, venom seeping from her fangs as she corded a thread of web tightly around your leg, to gauge its precise measurements from hip to toe "When they aren't trying to d..devour me, they're mooching or in..insulting me. The..they're the reason my home is such a horrid messsss"

"Malice doesn't suit you, weaver" You say sharply "You'd lower yourself to their level if you indulged in it. Its like wine. Addictive if one guzzles it habitually"
Cont
>>
>>5545683

"You s..speak from experience?" She asked quietly, respectfully bowing her head before she skittered away to fetch her silks

"I am made of grudges, my darling spider" You say proudly "I understand enmity, for it fills my every breath. My heart beats with resentment, pushing as much animosity as blood through my veins. Rancor is my Dao, in many ways. My three views, my very soul, are dyed in scarlet bitterness. I know how controlling a grudge can be, how all consuming they can become. How easily they can come to rule their hosts"

She stood, listening a she stretched out rolls of dyed silk, running her bristly legs over them to judge their quality

"I devour grudges, relieving those suffering from them of their poisonous fury, freeing them from the shackles of their own spite. A Grudge can ruin she who holds it as easily as the subject of their vendetta" You explain quietly

"Why ar..are you telling me this?" She asked suspiciously, as she presented to you four different rolls of red, scarlet, crimson, and carmine silk

"I need to practice some new moves I learned, see if they work for my martial arts. You have siblings you wish to see dead and gone, but are too kindly to seek them harm" You cackle, eyes aglow with killing intent as the meek spider clicks her mandibles nervously, just from standing close to you as you imagine battling her kin "I'm fond of you, you remind me of a beloved friend of mine. I'd hate to leave here, knowing you'll suffer in my absence, when I can go and crush some chitin under my heel and make your life a loooot easier. Surely, even a nice demon wouldn't be opposed to a little kinslaying, riiiight~?"

"They..they're strong" She whispered, trying to dissuade you "Y..you would..wouldn't want to fight them. F..for your own good. I.w..wouldn't want to lose a customer to their gl..gluttony"

"Then I'll slaughter their lackies and thugs if I decide they're too dangerous" You say, pausing to yawn and fluttering your eyelashes cutely "I killed Baoli-Wuyawang, and he...well, it doesn't shame me to admit, he was a superior opponent, even if I won in the end. What a monster he was! I almost thought I'd die rather than kill him a few times while fighting him"

"THAT WAS YOU!" She shouts out

"Yeah, that birdy was a real creep. I still feel dirty thinking about those lecherous looks he shot towards me, grrr. I'm glad he's a bunch of bones and feathers now" You say gleefully, grinning ear to ear "Does that prove to you, that I, the great Huanliuxue, am the hunter rather than the hunted, in this contest between Cats and Spiders? If you don't want me to solve your problem, I'll leave well enough alone and keep my nose out of your personal, familial affairs but.."
Cont
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>>5545684

"P..please get rid of them, I can't tolerate their existence or stand being around them. Please..please release me from the curse of my family" She said, sounding on the verge of tears, sounding almost guilty that she was so overjoyed to be offered a chance to see her brothers and sisters murdered.

"You don't need to beg" You drolly reply, rolling your eyes

"B..but I can't let you do it without compensating you! They are..r..really dangerous" She said, skittering away in a panic "I..I must have something I can offer in exchange"

"How about a sample of your venom and some of your unspun silk? I was going to ask for it anyways" You say before she can get carried away "My Mother is a peerless alchemist and I have learned much from her, such rare and high quality material will assist me in my continued cultivation, surely. I was thinking offering my own fur in exchange to convince you, since it'd be wrong to get such a valuable resource for nothing"

"I..I'd like to use your fur, but...it's too fire for..for me to work with. Ge..get rid of the worst of my sibl..siblings and it'll be a fair price for my silk and venom" She said after a moment though "I..I am amazed you'd offer so fine a material to me, for just a bit of web and venom"

"I know treasure when I see it" You declare "Its why I sought you out to begin with! You're an amazing weaver! The best I've ever seen"

"I..I..thank you" She squeaked, as she began to stitch the first of your robes over your bare body, to serve as a basis for the rest of the clothing she'd make for you to wear.
-
Roll 1d100. Best out of 4. DC 82*DC increased because of the opponents you have chosen*

Bonus can be used. Total: +132
>>
Rolled 19 (1d100)

>>5545685
>>
Rolled 62 (1d100)

>>5545685
Anjing is a cute
>>
Rolled 20 (1d100)

>>5545685
nope
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>>5545697
We still have one more roll to go Gramps
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>>5545698
Sorry I am tired and reverted to old habits.
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>>5545699
It's ok.
I would vote to use the bare minimum this time around, if the fourth roll still doesn't succeed.
Unless some anon can think of another chinese number magic that would be related to our cultivation and combat
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>>5545700
We'll see how the last roll goes
>>
Rolled 40 (1d100)

>>5545685
Guess I’ll try.
>>
>>5545700
I’d also back using 20 to meet the DC.

40 is nice because of death, but I feel it’s not death enough. And 6 + 2 is 8, which is considered lucky.
>>
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>>5545694
Alright, so. Bonus vote

>Spend 20 of the bonus. Result: 82. 112 total bonus left
>spend 40. Result. 102. 92 total bonus left
>spend 60. Result. 122. 72 bonus left
>Spend 80. result. 142. 62 bonus left
>Custom ammount
>Take the failure, spend no bonus.

Anyways, I'm really tired, and feel it'd be a bad idea to try and write in this state.

So I'm going to sleep, and will end this Bonus vote when I wake up or a few hours afterwards.
>>
>>5545731
Ah. Know what, I’ll bump it a little.
>Custom amount - 26
>Final result - 88
Haven’t gotten an 88 for training, right?
>>
>>5545731
Also, good night Grandfather! You’ll probably be up after I finish up work, which is great for me at least!
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>>5545734
I'll support this, even if it doesn't work we would only be wasting 4 points.
We really need to meditate/train some time to stock up on more points and then try to become stronger soon
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>>5545734
I'll support this, it leaves us at 108.

I don't want to go any lower, when we get back to the surface, do another training session with the kids, get the shit we need for our cultivation in order and then start CULTIVATING like fuck.

This next session, we just need the dice to give us a minimum of 36 for me to be happy. Since 108+36 = 144. And even if we get 46, I still only recommend going to 144, let's have our magic number or a mimum of two degrees higher [164+]
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>>5545768
Time to start our training montages, put Eye of the Housecat on repeat
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>>5545768
Wait, we’ll have a roll of 88 with 108 points left over? I didn’t realize that. It’s more auspicious than I thought!
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>>5545769
Rising up, back on the street
Did my time, took my chances
Went the distance, now I'm back on my feet
Just a Dao and her will to survive

So many times it happens too fast
You change your Honour for glory
Don't lose your grip on the dreams of the past
You must fight just to keep them alive

It's the eye of the Cat
It's the thrill of the fight
Rising up to the challenge of our rival
And the last known Fox
Stalks their prey in the night
And she's watching us all with the eye of the Cat

Face to face, out in the heat
Hanging tough, staying hungry
They stack the odds 'til we take to the street
For the kill with the skill to survive

It's the eye of the Cat
It's the thrill of the fight
Rising up to the challenge of our rival
And the last known Fox
Stalks his prey in the night
And she's watching us all with the eye of the tiger

Rising up straight to the top
Have the guts, got the dao
Went the distance, now I'm not going to stop
Just a Cat and her will to survive

It's the eye of the Cat
It's the thrill of the fight
Rising up to the challenge of our rival
And the last known Sister
Stalks her prey in the night
And her watching us all with the eye of the tiger
The eye of the cat
The eye of the cat
The eye of the cat
The eye of the Cat
>>
>>5545731
I don't know if it isn't better to just eat the small initial loss and just roll with it afterwards.
Rarely a battle is decided in the first bout and to use cultivation resources for this feels somewhat wasteful.

>>5545734
With that said if using our points wins i guess this auspicious alignment works well enough

>>5545657
Thanks for the explanation grampa!
>>
>>5545788
Rising up, back on the street
Lost the kids, took my vengeance
Killed that fucker, now I’m back on my feet
Just a cat and her dao to survive

>Later on
It's the eye of the tiger
It's the thrill of the hunt
Stalking prey who would challenge our existence
And the last known Princess
Stalks her prey in the night
And she's watching us all with the eye of the tiger

Fits the meter a bit better. I’d want to say “eye of the housecat” to keep the rhythm with two syllables, but that doesn’t sound terrifying at all. So tiger it is.

>>5545795
It’s also a training roll and not a combat roll, hence why we can access the bank of points. I’d prefer if we didn’t need to use it, but passing training rolls are also important since we’ll be teaching this to our juniors.
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>>5545814
I want to find out where these magic numbers are from, get a list of them and their meanings and then start crossing off what we've found
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>>5545734
supporting.
>>5545768
At the very least I want to go deeper in the tomb so we can have more ghosts to drain/whatever treasures we find
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>>5545831
That would be a good idea
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>>5545831
4 and 8 have connotations in Eastern numerology, so that extends to 44, 88, 444, 888 etc. 108 is sacred in Hinduism and Buddhism. It’s also central in an important foundational Wuxia text if I remember right, Water Margin. In there, there are 36 heavenly spirits and 72 earthly fiends so those numbers could be significant.

5 is important as we’ve seen (Five-colored Emperor, Five Element Springs etc.) since that’s the number of basic elements that spark all of creation. 25 (5 of 5) and 125 (trinity of 5 and 5) could hold meaning as a result as well, but I don’t see anything specific to them.

3 is always an important number because triangles are the first real “shape” you can draw. Trinities hold a lot of appeal.

12 holds significance in a lot of places. Number of months, number of zodiac animals etc. It’s easily divided by 2, 3, 4, and 6, so it’s convenient to break apart into small numbers for various purposes. Probably the big reason for the popularity.

I’m not an expert in numerology and some of this is from 10 minutes of searching + old knowledge, so take it with a grain of salt. I’m also definitely not a cultivation/wuxia/xianxia expert and only dabble in it, so I may be missing some more specific numbers to the genre.
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>>5545734
+1
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>>5545915
4 is considered unlucky, sounding like the word for death, while 8 is considered lucky, sounding like the word for wealth/fortune.
Also 8 is important in budhism, with 4 being important on tibetan budhism and/or bon.
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>>5545956
I thought 4 was unlucky for the japanese for the pronunciation but is it so even for the chinese?
Also i heard something about especially mistycal individuals having 40 teeth but maybe that's in india..
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>>5546026
4 sounds similar to death in chinese, so any nations that had a chinese-influenced alphabet like the japan, korea and vietnam, share the same superstition.
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>>5546035
The "the" is there because I was going to mention how Kanji is just the chinese han alphabet imported. Korea had something similar with the Hanja, and Vietnam had Chu Han
>>
Sorry if I took longer than expect. Managed to lock myself out of my room.

Landslide victory for spending 26 points, making the final result 88, a most auspicious number, and also how many legs and eyes spiders have! Leaving you with a total of 108

Update will arrive shortly

>>5545788
>>5545814
Beautiful.
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>>5546383
>88 legs and eyes on spiders
Er, Grandfather, most spiders shouldn’t have that many of either. Have you been spending too much time traveling the realms again?
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>>5546535
Maybe it's eleven spiders together.
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>>5546535
The spiders of high realms are truly monstrous creatures
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>>5546541
>Demonic Compendium Page 512 (Illustrations 513-520)
>Pinwheel Spiders
>These creatures, nightmarish to many first-timers in hell, is at first glance an accidental mishmash of several spiders in one. Many are drawn to notice the faces in the thorax, or the fangs at the joins of the legs, or the eyes that have hair trowing through them. The truth is that these “creatures” are truly one singular organism. Dissections of the creature (seen in the fourth and fifth illustrations) reveal a complex organ and nervous system underneath the skin, one that is consistently orderly and comprehensive in contrast to each spider’s uniquely grotesque outward appearance. This allows the pinwheel spiders unparalleled coordination for what seems like a mass of appendages wielded by several different spiders.
>One of their favored feats to terrify newcomers is to spin like a wheel while staring down the poor sap, hence their name. What anyone seeking to fight them should be more worried about are the extra spinnerets in various places around the body. While they lack the “reach” of the main spinneret, they can still generate enough web to ensare anything that attempts to strike them. Ranged weaponry or weapons coated in acids are recommended. For more information on acids, please turn to the “Taking On Hell” section for the full list of…
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>>5546564
This is now canon
>>
"Are you sure you don't need my help?" Yujijiao asks seriously, eyes glinting with the same light as the sharpened edge of a blade or blood clinging to a claw, her resolve to stand by her teacher tested and enduring despite of the danger you now face and walk willingly towards

"Of course, you haven't even started your training yet. Besides, I haven't gotten any good practice in since I humbled that brute of an ogress!" You cackle manically, rolling of your shoulders and flexing your arm "And I have many new strikes and moves I need to test out, a horde of techniques to evaluate and the best way to do that is in a fight! You'll learn more by watching, Dear Disciple, just keep your distance, and leave the nasty vermin to master. I'll squash them with utmost ease, you'll see!"

"You're confident in everything you do, I have every right to fear for your safety when you choose to use monsters as your practice dummies" She sighed, hissing as she curled and coiled in on herself, turning into a venomous green and black ghost light, the flame flickering and dancing as if it were caught in a gale "Which, I, as your royal peer will once again state my thoughts on the matter. Its stupid, brash and foolhardy"

"Heh-heh-heh" You titter, flicking the sleeve of your new robe, watching its hues shift and dance in the fire light of the burning bone torches and corpses piles around you "One cannot learn to be a killer, if they do not risk being killed themselves. Its one of the laws of the wild. Eat or be eaten"

"I know that, all too well" She growled angrily "But, you can turn human, you don't need to..."

"I do. They're my laws, my virtues, my beliefs. I will always be a beast no matter the hide I will. I can see clear as day you're worried for my well being. But trust teacher. I'll be alright" You say sweetly, patting your scaled student atop her head, between her beautiful horns "I'll be done with this pest control quicker than an incense stick burns up, and I can't be swayed to change my mind, we've already found our prey!

"What do you meaAAAH!" Yujijiao shrieks as the ground erupts and two chitinous limbs erupt, trying to grab hold of you. With the arm you waved early to dramatically flick your sleeve, you raise an open palm and smirk, eyes narrowed. The fool fell right into the trap set for them, how amusing!

"Seems Miss Anjing was right, her family is nothing but a bunch of brutes" You sigh, as the spider's fangs bounce of the barrier spell your erected the moment it leapt out of the ground "Can you even understand words? If you can, know that I have come to kill you!"

"Frrrressssh meat" It growls impudently, spitting and shrieking in a display meant to intimidate. Still smirking rather smugly, you adopt the stance of your ethereal martial style, but instead of separating your fingers to mimic your claws, you ball them one into a tight fist, clenching it as hard as you can, muscles tensing all the way down your arm and the other your leave open.
Cont
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>>5546570
Feel free to toss some other prompts my way. I got a couple more hours before bed and I’m feeling energetic. I can BS some more entries in the Compendium.
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>>5546572

This is what was drawn for the first technique of the first style on the first page of the Beast Saint Doctrine, the form for a simple strike that can be used in one's natural or human forms.

The closed fist, can be exchanged for a headbutt, horn gouge, hoof strike or hard slam of the paw, tail or body. The open hand , can become an open mouth, extended claws, long tail or ensnaring spines. It is a move meant to teach beasts how to adapt their forms and attacks between their bodies. Something you've already figured out, but figured your could improve upon.

"Deaaaad meat" You mock, mimicking the gurgling voice of your opponent, welcoming them to attack with a quick beckoning gesture. And they do, pulling on two strings hung up iron barked trees and pulling themselves back to catapult themselves forward as they curl into a ball.

You blink, thinking of the other, basic techniques you studied and master in all but practice from that manual gifted to you across ten generations. Numerous drawn images dance in your imagination, moving in stilted motion, switching from the animal whose movements they were styled and intended for, before turning into a human figure mimicking them to the best of their abilities. One stands out in your mind

Iron Ox style. Niu Bingwen's personal martial art and the first made by any beast. Able to be used with axes or open hands, it followed the metal principle of martial arts, so the earth nature of its first practitioner could empower its strikes with his purely earth aligned Qi. A master of it could split steel with a chop of their hand, as easily as they could fell trees with even a dull axe. Or, they could use the same hand as a spear, and impale their opponents with it like they were a bull's horn. Breaking hooves, stabbing horns. That was the principle behind the Tieniu style (铁 牛, Iron Ox). You didn't have a great quantity of earth Qi in your cultivation base, but you did have a fair amount of Metal. Pale blue lightning crackled at your finger tips, as you pressed the fingers of your open palm more closely together and took in a deep breath.

The shadow of the spinning spider ball fell over you, judging from the brute's size and weight, it'd be enough to crush most of the bones in your body.

"Moonlight Ascent (月华上升, Yuèhuáshàngshēng) You uttered, thinking outload. An technique created by Yuehuajian (Moonlight Orchid, 月华蕳), the first insect known to ascend to become a magical beast. It was a tweaking of the common lightness skill, utilizing channeled Qi to create false wings upon ones back, and the thrust would provide lift akin to flight, which is an advance technique. Your Specter Lightness skill [幽灵-轻工, Yōulíng-Qīnggōng], already allows you to levitate and float like a leaf in the wind.

The spider fell.
Cont
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>>5546577

You combined your variation of the lightness skill, with Orchids' Moonlight Ascent and Niu Bingwen's Stone Shattering Horn (石震裂犄角, Shízhènlièjījiǎo), and caught the descending spider in the sphere of your Specter Lightness skill's illusionary time. For a second, then, using the Phantom Cat step [幽灵猫步, Yōulíngmāobù] alongside the Moonlight ascent, using Blood Qi for it, wings of bloody mist burst out of your back, and you rocketed upwards, the lift intermingling with the "Blinking" motion of The phantom Cat steps activation. Appearing directly under the spider, timing your ascent perfectly so its rotation would expose its soft under belly, you drove your open hand forward like a spear point, as you released the lighting gathering at your finger tips with a crack like thunder.

Its own fall drove your arm deep into its belly, cracking the weak chitin protecting its innards as a bolt of blood red lighting shot out its back, an extra surprise you made by the addition of blood Qi and destructive Yin Qi channeled through your palm the moment the lighting in it arced from your hand into the flesh of the spider.

It was split in two, and showered steaming gore across the ground

And would've splatted you as well, if you didn't use the specter lightness skill to retreat to keep yourself and your new robes clean.

"See?" You boast, flicking your tongue over your teeth "I told you it'd be easy!"

"We still have seven more to kill" Yujijiao reminds you grouchily "And...what a stench they left behind! Disgusting!"

"At least it didn't get in my hair! I think I'll fight the next one in my natural form. To make sure this new combination I made works for cats as well!" You merrily exclaim, clapping your hands together

"Can you even call that a fight?" Yujijiao asked, complimenting you, clearly "It seemed rather one sided. That was a remarkable technique you used, have you thought of a name for it"

"Hmmm" You tapped your chin, eyes sparkling as you thought for just a moment "Cat catches star (猫捕获星, Māobǔhuòxīng), I like the sound of it and it is fitting"

"A worthy name of such a marvelous strike!" Yujijiao praises "I can't wait to learn it"

Now that's a thought! Flying snakes! Whose thought of that before, huh?

The seven remaining assassinations are finished with just as much ease as the first though each one takes longer than the last to complete, since the siblings get smarter and more cunning as you move down the list Anjing gave you. But, as she said, they're basically mindless animals, even if they're fairly cunning as far as feral beasts go. You learn that Cat Catches Star can be used in your native form, with both your claws and fangs, and you get enough practice to feel confident in including most of the basic techniques from the Beast Saint Doctrine into your fighting style. Which greatly expands your Ghostly Feline Martial arts.
Cont
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>>5546578

Though, you add your personal touch to each stance, move, strike, feint or counter, so it'll fit more seamlessly with the rest of your self taught style. And with the abilities you've already trained, this creates two new moves you think, like Cat Catches Star, deserve titles and names!

Four Step Execution (四步行刑, Sìbùxíngxíng) is actually two techniques in one. One inspired by Qiang, who had learned to use the phantom Cat step to perfect her method of swift execution via decapitation, and the other learned from your time in Yuyi's body. The first, one uses four "Blinks" to get behind their target, and then bites their neck, killing them or severs their head entirely. The second, strikes acupoints and uses poison if its on hand, to kill ones opponent in four strikes, weakening them with the first three, before the fourth stops their heart. And one can be changed to the other mid-execution, if the target proves capable of countering one of its two forms. You created the second half by building off of the Fang Flurry (尖牙疾风,Jiānyájífēng) a barrage of thumb and two finger jabs to strike vital organs beneath skin and deliver poison smeared on hands or nails, to function in the place of a snake's fangs. Of course Fang Flurry was made by a viper who preferred their human form greatly to the one they hatched with.

And, you'd be lying if you claimed to not take inspiration from a few of your past battles, where you actually exploded the hearts of your opponents through various means and types of Qi.

And the Second technique you've dubbed the Shooting Star Stampede (流星挤踏, Liúxīngjǐtà). Inspired by the kick, stomp and knee heavy styles favored by former herd and prey animals, and wanting to find a use for your human legs and Hind Legs in battle besides movement, clawing or grappling, you set out to make a move that only uses them and squashed four of the eight spiders to make a worthwhile technique for both your forms out of your clumsy first kicks and stomps. It makes liberal use of both The Blood Red Lightning Cat Step (血紅色列缺猫步, Xuè hóngsèlièquēmāobù) and its components, the The Blood Torrent Rush (衁急流奔,Huāngjíliúbēn) and Phantom cat step, as well as your basic use of Youling Qinggong to rapidly stomp and kick your opponent, usually from above, to trample them into the ground. It has several levels of speed and difficulty, starting with just using the area of the specter lightness kill to outpace and overwhelm your opponent, then the phantom cat step to hit them rapidly if they learn the trick behind your lightness skill, then relying on the blood torrent rush for additional speed, before ending with the blood red lightning cat step to strike from several angles seemingly at once, when the previous levels proof inefficient in beating the crap out of whoever got on your bad side that day.
Cont
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>>5546579

And its that last form that gives the technique its name. Because when it is used, at least according to Yujijiao, your feet and legs look similar to Meteor shower of falling stars, glowing with the blood Qi wrapped tightly around the muscles of your legs as you kick their heads viciously, several times, in rapid succession.

And to your surprise, after squashing the last of her most treacherous and wicked siblings under your hindpaws, Anjing herself greets you at the gate to her home, Kowtowing and bowing deeply as she and the moth spirit present you four bundles of her steel like silk and a clay pot filled with her venom!

Four spindles of Spider demon silk, 1 pot of Spider Demon Venom

"I..I am i..in your de..debt, Lady Huanliuxue! Y..you'll never need an appointment to s..see me a.again or to seek my s..services my friend!" She declares tearfully "And..and I'll inv...invite you to my house when I've f..finished renovations"

"Thank you" Is all you can manage say, overwhelmed by her show of gratitude and thanks. It makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. You did a good deed killing those eight demons, surely.

And so you are in high spirits as you leave with the spoils of those killings and the first few robes Anjing managed to finish of your commission when, you're stopped in the middle of the street.

Fateful Encounter! Eighter Armed Assassin. Roll 88 against a spider demon, or kill several of them in one day. Both conditions met \

By a demon wearing a straw hat, with eight swords strapped to his back and armor seemingly fashion from a black widow spider's chitin.

"Crow Killer. You can't seem to keep yourself out of trouble here in the springs' They said, lifting their hat to reveal eight red eyes on their otherwise human and heavily tattooed face, which was framed by a well groomed beard parted at the tip into two, fang like points. Black lines of ink made webs from their brow down to their neck, and looked to continue all over their body. His hair was long, black and messy

"You looking for a fight?" You asked churlishly from behind your stack of spider silk

"Just here on business" He replied drolly "Unlike the Crows. Our clan doesn't take kindly to interfering outsiders. Nor do we forgive slights easily"

"Ah" You say, realizing why they were talking to you now "You're here cause I trimmed the branches of your tangled family tree"

"Clever kitten" He said with a nod "We can't let a string of open murders go unopposed. We're already abhorred and reviled by all other demons. Can't let the killing of named clan members go unanswered. No hard feelings, just a matter of our families survival"

"What a twisted sense of loyalty, consider how they were acting towards family" You say, rolling your eyes "So what, you expect me to smack my head on the ground and beg forgiveness? Surely you don't think you can just cut me down"
Cont
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>>5546581

"Nor do I want to. It'd be a waste to kill a girl as beautiful as you but...orders are orders, so I have to at least try and do enough harm to send a message. Mama is angry with you. Not at Anjing, before you ask. She's actually rather proud of her growing something resembling a spine" He said, bowing "So please, prepare yourself"

What do you do, Huanliuxue?

>Just step back into the Mortal Realm with Yujijiao, making a rude gesture towards the would be assassin as you leave him looking like an idiot.

>"I did your clan a favor. Beasts that can barely think or act outside of their base instinct are worthless" (Fight him)

>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)

>"Eh, I don't really feeling like shedding blood right now, despite my name. Surely I can compensate the death of some trash with a few souls or spirit stones"

>Write in
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>>5546575
Memory eating demons and their technique copying cartel is a must
>>5546583
>Just step back into the Mortal Realm with Yujijiao, making a rude gesture towards the would be assassin as you leave him looking like an idiot.
>>
>>5546584
Although I wouldn't mind this one
>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)
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>>5546583
>No moves at the moment.
>”If you’re truly so reviled then you should be seeking shelter under me, not fighting me. The Wild Princess stands reviled to all the orthodox sects and heavens solely by her birth. To extend a paw in aid of demons under the same burdens in hell is just common courtesy.”
>”The fact is that I saw nothing in those spiders worth my mercy. I find striking at children an unforgivable sin, and Anjing is soft enough to seem as one. Perhaps with more leaders like her, you’d find yourselves more welcomed amongst the parlors of hell. You’d at least be welcomed in mine.”
If he still wants to fight after being berated,
>Ready your claws.
>”
>>
>>5546583
>"Eh, I don't really feeling like shedding blood right now, despite my name. Surely I can compensate the death of some trash with a few souls or spirit stones"
>"And if a material compensation is not enough, then I hope a more diplomatic approach and a apology is enough. I understand the problem your Clan have with others, and the unforgiving world your youngers live, or at least to a basic level"
>"I just wanted to help sweet Anjing with her problem and that's it, I didn't came here to go after your Clan."
>"But if my words aren't enough for you, nor will be to your honorable Mother..."
>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)

We know we fight for Anjing for our own moral code, they don't and surely they won't grasp the idea (even less than other Demons with how their lives are)
>>
>>5546584
I can try. Keep in mind I know little about actual Chinese mythology so I might miss the opportunity for some easy references with the prompts. I also forget if we already know anything about them.
>Demonic Compendium Page 342 (Illustrations 343-346)
These demons are difficult to find references to, for perhaps self-evident reasons. These demons anchor themselves onto human hosts, and consume their memories. In time, their hosts not only become forgetful but are show less of their previous personality, struck with listlessness and apathy. They often seem to recover fully after a long period of decline, only to pass away as though they’ve simply forgotten how to live.
>More accurately, “memory-eating” demons only eat memories as a side-effect of their feeding mechanism. They seem to feed off a person’s soul, using their mind as a “straw” into it. It’s unknown exactly what they’re deriving from it, but souls that have been consumed by the memory demons do not possess any great weight of virtue or sin. It is as though they have lived simple, unfulfilling lives with no opportunity for any actions that could shape their moral compass. As such, it appears they are truly dining on both the sin and virtue of their hosts.
>Make no mistake, a memory demon can be a fearsome foe if threatened. As a consequence of their memory stealing, they have at the fingertips a vast arsenal of techniques and tricks used by their former hosts. Due to the weight of these memories, they are also able to “overpower” their hosts simply by letting them interface more closely with their mind. A memory demon in a capable body is a terrifying force. Conversely, one in a weakened or ill-suited body is merely a dangerous foe, as they will be limited to whatever spiritual energies they may be able to force through their host before it destroys itself. Do not underestimate their political and social acumen however. Their ability to ingratiate their own thoughts into their host to protect their interests is greater than any spell or martial art they could use.
>Curiously, it seems memory demons can’t last without a host, appearing as a faint purple mist before being destroyed or returned to hell. They can survive for some time in non-living bodies, though it seems they lose parts of their own memories and powers as they stay in them.
>With all that said, I have yet to meet anyone who has seen a memory demon in hell itself. I have found no instances of them feeding off of hell’s inhabitants, yet no one can speak of where they live. Is their true form far different from what is seen by exorcists? Have they managed to carve out their own small home in a section of hell no one else dares tread? Are their powers actually greater in hell, and they can eat our memories without injecting into us? Sadly, I fear I will move on before I have discovered these answers.
>>
>>5546583 >>5546605
>”If you’re truly so abhored then you should be seeking shelter under me, not fighting me. The Wild Princess stands reviled to all the orthodox sects and heavens solely by her birth. To extend a paw in aid of spirits under the same burdens in hell is just common courtesy.”
>”The fact is that I saw nothing in those spiders worth my mercy. They were mindless brutes guided only by their lust for blood and flesh, scum truly worthy of being condemned as demons. Anjing is nothing like them, soft spoken and well mannered as she is. Perhaps with more leaders like her, you’d find yourselves more welcomed by others. You’d at least be welcomed by me.”
If refused:
>"Oh well... I guess I could use another scrap. Although, since you've been so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)

Might be too much but I felt like write fagging.
>>
>>5546605
>, if the target proves capable of countering one of its two forms. You created the second half by building off of the Fang Flurry (尖牙疾风,Jiānyájífēng) a barrage of thumb and two finger jabs to strike vital organs beneath skin and deliver poison smeared on hands or nails, to function in the place of a snake's fangs. Of course Fang Flurry was made by a viper who preferred their human form greatly to the one they hatched with.
>>
>>5546640
I can back this tweak to mine.

And don’t worry about writefagging. They’ll break down my door first, I’m sure.
>>
>>5546583
>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)

An assassin that aproaches from the front and explains themselves. What a bizzare difference to what we've learned to be the common standard of spider demons. Either he's strong or perilously lovestruck.
>>
>>5546654
Im not worried about the write fagging per se, more the fact that, the more you writefag on a prompt the less likely it is to be supported. That's been my experience at least.
>>
>>5546688
It’s been a mix for me. I’ve gotten people to switch for mine fairly often. I probably whiffed on even more, but I do write-ins often enough that I don’t notice the failures so much.

The biggest danger is that you take a while with the write-in, a bunch of people vote, then some more vote shortly after you post, and yours gets lost in the shuffle. Depends on the quest though. We bounce around enough things here that I feel most people are reading each other’s votes. Enough to swing a write-in.
>>
>>5546583
>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)
He has Eight arms. Eight hands. Just imagine the petting.
>>
>>5546583
>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)

While the rude gestures would be funny he did have the good sense of being reasonable and introducing himself first, and we did kill spider mama offspring so making this fight public on the streets would be good for both reputations.

If he carries himself well or, hell forbid, wins we can still try to negotiate a monetary compensation.

I sense a parallel between this fight and the one the two idiots had in the middle of the city that we stopped but this time it's a demonic city so who cares for their inconvenience really?
Just hope there are no hidden masters in the crowd who can take offense.
>>
>>5546583
>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)
>>
>>5546746
>Support
>Let's add spider killer to my titles.

Dude was kind enough to give us a heads up.
>>
>>5546583
Spiders valuing a spine, lol and lol.

>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)
>>
>>5546626
Nice job
Obliviously the ones in hell are hiding while controlling the manual and book market from the shadows
>>
>>5546581
>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)
>>
>>5546583
>>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)
>Let's move this somewhere less crowded. No need to make a mess.
If it's just business, then we can resolve it professionally and without complications.
>>
>>5547397
Nobody can actually die here.

Nobody is being threatened, so there's not really a reason to do it in private. Especially when this is a public declaration by the spiders.
>>
>>5546583
Vote roundup: I'm actually on a computer this time instead of my phone edition!

>Votes - 11
yPgfHj+G
aLZIAV+F
pYIy8ll8
HhUpbQCY
lIgsNHcJ
oKzyjg0/
dxhQ6mr0
ZT4Lal/5
WONtuIio
Ix0GcDa+
mejpffXw

>Just leave - 1
yPgfHj+G (also backs polite assassin as a lesser choice, but that vote is strong enough on its own)

>I did you a favor (fight) - 0

>Aren't you a polite assassin? (fight) - 7
lIgsNHcJ
oKzyjg0/
dxhQ6mr0
ZT4Lal/5
WONtuIio
Ix0GcDa+
mejpffXw

>Payment - 1
pYIy8ll8 (implicit vote based on their write-in)

> Write-in: They weren't worth mercy, if you were kinder you'd find more allies (berate) (fight if pressed) - 2
aLZIAV+F
HhUpbQCY (using this anon's version for both votes)

>Write-in: Compensation plus apology, if it fails then (fight) - 1
pYIy8ll8

>Write-in: Move fight someplace less crowded - 2
mejpffXw
aLZIAV+F (Adding my vote here)

>>5547406
Death isn't a concern here, but property damage still needs to get fixed. We wouldn't want to be like those churls who hurled things through shops and disrupt someone's meal. So I can support wanting to move it away from buildings.

If a crowd wants to watch, so be it.
>>
>>5547425
I'll support telling him to go to place less crowded
>>
>>5547425
We can just not cause property damage. We're skilled enough, I think.
>>
>>5547440
You say that, but it’ll need a roll. Luck can always turn sour.
>>
>>5547433

I'm alright with taking consideration of our surroundings.
>>
>>5546583
>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)
>>
>>5546583
>"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" (fight him)
>>
File: 1670129170613944.jpg (1.06 MB, 1800x2400)
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1.06 MB JPG
Ending the vote now, Tallying the result

Just step back into the Mortal Realm with Yujijiao, making a rude gesture towards the would be assassin as you leave him looking like an idiot.:1

"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with":13
-Let's move this somewhere less crowded. No need to make a mess.:2

”If you’re truly so reviled then you should be seeking shelter under me, not fighting me. The Wild Princess stands reviled to all the orthodox sects and heavens solely by her birth. To extend a paw in aid of demons under the same burdens in hell is just common courtesy....etc":2

>"Eh, I don't really feeling like shedding blood right now, despite my name. Surely I can compensate the death of some trash with a few souls or spirit stones":1
-And if a material compensation is not enough, then I hope a more diplomatic approach and a apology is enough. I understand the problem your Clan have with others, and the unforgiving world your youngers live, or at least to a basic level...etc: 1

They weren't worthy of mercy: 2

So you'll tell them ""Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either. Draw your blades and lets get this done with" and fight the spider demon

>>5547425
Many thanks, junior.

>>5546626
A wonderful entry!
>>
"Well, since you're so polite, I won't kill you either!" You declare, loud enough for everyone in the street to hear, wagging a finger as you disrobe with the other hand. No reason to ruin one of your new robes by tearing it up and soaking it in blood, besides, it'll be ill fitting when you adopt your natural form. You don't have any weapons, and while you are confident in your martial arts, you'll feel much more at ease facing steel with claws and fangs instead of soft hands and dull teeth.

The spider demon merely cocked his head, eight eyes glowing as he watched you transform into the ox sized house cat that is your true self, as your now discarded robes floated through the air, before Yujijiao caught them and held onto them for safe keeping.

"Draw your blades and lets get done with this" You commanded, snapping your jaws as the locale peasantry of ghosts and lesser devils ran for cover, while the stronger spirits, hungry ghosts and demons formed a crowd and began placing bets and cheering like this was a cock fight.

"What a beautiful monster you are! My hand trembles in your presence. What an oppressive aura. You're a death dealer, that's for sure. Why else would standing before you feel akin to walking through a field of rotting corpses! Magnificent!" he applauds, extra hands beyond his two emerging from under his cloak to clap, as his upper most arms reach to unsheathe his eight blades, tossing and almost juggling them between his eight hands, which you see aren't so much armored as they are covered in sleek, elegant chitin formed into the shape of human hands. Plus claws.

"You...truly deserve your self given epithet of empress of beasts, Huanliuxue" He said in a cool, measured tone, not losing his guts or composure despite his trembling hands "I can't tell if it is excitement or instinctive fear shaking in my arms"

Ah, that'd explain it

"Enough talking, enough stalling, lets get to tearing eachother apart already! I'm a busy woman and you can only hold my interest for so long!" You laughed, throwing your head back and lifting up a paw to extend your claws as your eyes glowed with excited glee "I've never fought a demon with multiple arms before, this should be fun!"

"I've never fought a cat. I concur, this will be a lesson that's as much fun as dice!" He cackled, throwing off his straw hat and whipping his hair around as he adopted a very odd stance, drawing his lower four lower blades into a shape like two X's stacked atop one another, while he placed the upper four for through the gaps, drawing them along the edges of the other four. A very bizzare and uncomfortable looking sight, since a human frame was not supposed to have eight arms, and indeed, his appearance shifts more towards arachnid as he prepares himself, Becoming some horrid and disgusting to look at combination of both rather than his previous, human favoring looks.
Cont
>>
>>5549412

"Gross!" You chime playful, as you begin to circle around him "You were more handsome before'

"My fighting style doesn't work with only two hands" He said politely "Forgive me for offending your eyes with this abominable form, I to, dislike to rely on it. It is, as you said, rather gross"

You just smirked in reply, telling him the fight had started with a quick flick of your tail. He went on the defensive, moving his blades around in a distracting way, that made it hard to figure out and keep track of where each sword actually was.

What is your first move, Huanliuxue?

>Using the whispering death claw, challenge his eight swords with your claws (Martial Trial. DC 80)

>Use the ranged version of the Vein draining fang against him, keeping your distance from his blades (Magic Trial. DC 70)

>Use the Moonlight ascent to get high into the air, using your specter lightness skill to remain floating, and then unleash a barrage of destructive yin Spheres! (Magic trial DC 66)

>Test out the shooting star stampede on a living target (Martial Trial. DC 50)

>Write in
>>
>>5549413
>Use the Moonlight ascent to get high into the air, using your specter lightness skill to remain floating, and then unleash a barrage of destructive yin Spheres! (Magic trial DC 66)
>>
>>5549413
>>Use the ranged version of the Vein draining fang against him, keeping your distance from his blades (Magic Trial. DC 70)
>>
>>5549413
>>Use the ranged version of the Vein draining fang against him, keeping your distance from his blades (Magic Trial. DC 70)
Put him on the time trial. It's easier to know how long the blades are and his overall reach and watch his hands than to try and track the individual swords. After all, swords move faster than fists.
>>
>>5549413
>>Use the ranged version of the Vein draining fang against him, keeping your distance from his blades (Magic Trial. DC 70)
I would keep in mind that he may be able to spit poison at us.

Banter as distraction:
>Tell me, are there other interesting spiders like you and Anjing? Her brothers and sisters weren’t much better than mindless brutes. She’s sweet, and you’re very respectful and a flatterer! I can enjoy my time spent with spiders like you two.
After we see him fight a bit, I’d like to try and weaponize flirting since we have the Yin Physique upgrade.
>>
>>5549526
I'll support.

Also yeah, this dude is either a flirt, entranced or really damn smart. He's made sure that even if he loses he's not gonna be hurt by playing on our ego. Supreme spider smarts.
>>
>>5549413
>Use the Moonlight ascent to get high into the air, using your specter lightness skill to remain floating, and then unleash a barrage of destructive yin Spheres! (Magic trial DC 66)
>>
>>5549526
+1 this guy is cool.
>>
>>5549526
Support
>>
>>5549413
>Test out the shooting star stampede on a living target (Martial Trial. DC 50)
>>
>>5549526
+1
>>
>>5549526
+1
>>
>>5549413
>Use the Moonlight ascent to get high into the air, using your specter lightness skill to remain floating, and then unleash a barrage of destructive yin Spheres! (Magic trial DC 66)
Vein Draining Fang's DC is a bit high for my taste, but I will +1 for the banter in >>5549526
>>
Ending the vote, Tallying the result now.

Use the Moonlight ascent to get high into the air, using your specter lightness skill to remain floating, and then unleash a barrage of destructive yin Spheres! :3

Use the ranged version of the Vein draining fang against him, keeping your distance from his blades:8

Tell me, are there other interesting spiders like you and Anjing? Her brothers and sisters weren’t much better than mindless brutes. She’s sweet, and you’re very respectful and a flatterer! I can enjoy my time spent with spiders like you two.:7

Test out the shooting star stampede on a living target:1

So you'll use banter as a distraction and the ranged variation of the vein draining fang , to keep away from the edge of his blades.

update will arrive shortly.
>>
And you had absolutely no desire to find out which was were by feeling them slice through you. Keeping away from them would be the wisest course of action, it always is when dealing with something sharp, but particularly now when those razor edged blades were a blur of motion and speed. There was absolutely no need for you test your claws against steel, at least presently. Even your ego wasn't bloated enough to make such foolishness seem intelligent.

You'd keep away from his eight flashing swords, at least until you've figured out their rhythm and the trick behind their confusing movements and rotations. However, that meant you'd have to attack from a distance, at least as long as you wanted to keep your hide flawless and unmarred by bleeding cuts and wounds. Which was fine, after all, you knew plenty of ranged spells and techniques. The issue was getting the spider to lower his guard to sneak a spell through beneath his overly aggressive form of defense, as certainly those swords could parry as easily as they sliced.

'A distraction' You thought as the two of your circled one another, tracing your heels over the street, each movement ponderous and gradual, anticipating the first blow to come at any moment or anywhere 'he likes to talk, if I get him talking again, I might be able to slip a Vein Draining Fang through his whirring wall of blades, and exsanguinate him enough to fatigue and slow him down. Then my victory will be as easily grasped as a cattail!'

Flicking your tail up and turning your smirk into an inviting smile, you set your devious plan into motion! You'd flatter him with casual banter and sweet praises! Then he'd lower his guard, and you'd strike before he could raise it again and realize your trick! A clever ploy if there ever was one!

"Tell me" You say with a breathless sigh, haughtily raising up your chin as you prowled around the ogre spider, his fangs drooling venom as they hung from his monsterous face, poison clinging to the bristles of his chin and rising as putrid green vapor "are there other interesting spiders like you and Anjing?"

"Didn't you just request me to hold my own wagging tongue?" He asked with a gurgling chuckle "A battle is no place for idle gossip"

"Oh" You say raising a paw to your chin "its just that her brothers and sisters weren't much better than mindless brutes"

"Brutes with names" He warned, clicking his mandibles and cocking his head to the side "but brutes nonetheless. Were are you getting at, Princess of beasts?"

"I just can't understand how they shared blood with her, and you" You pout "She's sweet, and you're very respectful! And quite the flatterer! I can enjoy time spent with spiders, if they're like the two of you"

His eight eyes blinked and his swinging fell out of rhythm, but just for a moment. A momentary distraction, an idle thought or shock, but that alone was enough. Enough to give you an advantage over him, and give you the glory of shedding first blood!
>>
>>5551589
Roll 1d100. best out 4, DC 68. DC lowered slightly by Distraction
>>
Rolled 11 (1d100)

>>5551590
bequeath us luck o seven fingered spirits of fortune
>>
>>5551591
no not that kind of luck..
>>
Rolled 7 (1d100)

>>5551590
big money big money
>>
Rolled 27 (1d100)

>>5551590
>>
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>>5551591
>>5551602
>>5551606
darn, we need a miracle fellas.
>>
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>11, 7, 27
SPIRITS PLEASE
>>
Rolled 40 (1d100)

>>5551590
>>
>>5551614
Failure. 20 under DC, nearly thirty. Ouch. Update will arrive shortly
>>
>>5551617
Even if we lose, I’m still fairly confident I can do write-ins to keep our rep up and at least swing him to look after Lady Anjing. We’ll see what happens.
>>
Gathering Qi into your tail, you swiftly move it through the air, casting your spell swiftly between your steps as you turn your casual prowl into a gallop. A dart of dripping carmine light forms just above the tip of your tail, forming itself into the shape of the vague outline of blood coating a knife. Flicking your tail, you throw the vein draining fang at the slouching spider ogre's neck, as you move to get behind him and nearly trample the spectators who aren't quick enough in getting out of your way. And just to make sure you open up his veins to spill out the ichor flowing through them, you conjure another Vein Draining Fang and prepare to throw it at him the moment the first buries itself in his chitinous hide!

It never does, he moves, with such haste his image seems to flicker like smoke in wind. Adopting a two handed grip with one of the uppermost of his eight blades, while still holding its twin at and angle, he twists around on his heel and slams it against the shrieking spell, blood red sparks flying from when they meet as his expression shifts suddenly from enamored and dazed to fierce and determined. The spell, some how, deflects, ricocheting off of seemingly ordinary steel and high into the air where it explodes like a firework. Either he has an amazing technique, or those swords are special in someway. Swallowing hard, you throw another spell, and another, one after the other. He steps forward to meet them, keeping his legs crouched as he pivots his swing to swing his blade upwards, utilizing the momentum of his first strike to drive it straight through the second dart, before pulling returning to a one handed grip to deflect the third Qi blade with the twin of the sword he had parried the first two with. The halved Vein draining fang flies past him, as he smacks the third into the sky. You stare, dumbfounded by his display of swordsmanship as he whistles as well as a spider abomination can, as two of the specters behind him, one a one eyed devil and the other a boar head brute, grasp at their necks, that are erupting with geysers of blood.

He stops rotating and twisting his blades, and holds them out from him like the legs of an ordinary spider.

"A similar technique felled the crow king's pet sinner bone centipede" He remarks, as you continue running, hopping to get behind him still and looking for a chance to throw more spells at him "I was in the audience that day, you know. Remarkable form and execution!"

Something catches on your tail, and your hind legs. Binding them and holding them in place, digging into them like a garrot of steel wire. Looking back, as you stop running to keep from bowling over and falling, you see a faint glint in the air and recognize it.
Its spider demon silk! You realize this, as it begins to pull and tug, as the polite assassin wrenches with all his might. Is he trying to pull you through the air? Or rip your legs and tail off!? You can't tell! You can't read a spider's expression!
>>
>>5551633
Strength Trial. Roll 1d100. best out of four. DC 75
>>
Rolled 42 (1d100)

>>5551634
Uhhh... break a leg?
>>
Rolled 3 (1d100)

>>5551634
okay this time I'm calling on dragon spirits instead
>>
BUDDHA
>>
Rolled 94 (1d100)

>>5551634
shamful
>>
>>5551668
young ones these days,always tying to make more complex then it need to be
>>
Rolled 34 (1d100)

>>5551634
>>
>>5551668
He's good, but should remember a cat is no mere fly to be ensnared in a web
>>
>>5551668
Nice success! 10 over DC and a hair's breadth away from 20! Update will arrive shortly
>>
>>5551668
>>5551699
Phew I don't think Huanliuxue's pride could tolerate another failure
>>
But you certainly aren't going to stand still and dumbfounded until you find out! Spider Demon Silk may be able to cut through flesh, bone and even mundane metals as if they were soft jelly, but to the great huanliuxue they are naught by ordinary cob webs! Glaring, making sure to make eye contact with the spider who dared to imagine he could catch you in his web like a common fly, you sheathe the muscles in your hind legs and tail in blood Qi, strengthening them and using a simple skin hardening technique to keep from searing through your flesh through the explosive demonstration of strength to come. The ground cracks as your muscles and veins bulge, steam rising from your fur as tense your legs, and leap from the street, pulling the strings of silk wrapped tightly around you, digging into your fur and threatening to slice through your flesh.
Kicking off a nearby roof, you pull the strings as taught as they'll go and see your opponent struggle to hold his ground, his eight arms pulling forward by their wrists. A grimace of pain can be understood now matter what sort of face makes them. His eight eyes widen with panic, as he realize just how much strength lies within the body of an ox sized cat. He snarls, digging his heels and claws into the stones of the street, clenching his fangs together as his eyes squint from the sheer exertion required to try and keep you still.

And its from his stance you see how he got you caught in his web to begin with. His wrists The strange movements of his swords was a distraction, so he could use slight of hand to shoot out invisibly thin, yet iron tough strings of silk across the street, for a dome of web and barrier of silk above and around the arena he chose. He might've even put some strings before he alerted to you of his presence by approaching you so boldly. He must've been telling the truth of seeing you fight before, cause now that you're looking for them, you see the air is filled with miniscule, steel hard wires. But, that means nothing. The ones that have caught you are on the verge of snapping. All you need is one more stretch and they'll either break, or the arms holding onto them will!

Twitching your ears, a dying grudge shield appears under your front legs and you see a dread look of realization flash in eight ruby red eyes. Unable to contain it, you flash a wickedly amused grin as you push off of them with your paws and leap higher into the air. There's a snapping sound, and you look down, to see that he's severed the strings wrapped around his own wrists, which are now dripping with pale ichor, that pours from a gouge cut through his arm and into his chitinous skin. Behind you, silk strings hang limply

Cackling like a witch, you drift through the air and gently touch down on a rooftop across the streets, hanging on with your claws as you crouch on it, haunches coiled and ready to launch into a pounce.
Cont
>>
>>5551724
"Impressive" He praises in pain, rubbing his wrists as he turns to you, gesturing to you with one of his many blades "I see my usual tricks won't work against you"

He throws a sword, controlling it with more silk strings, you deflect it back with another dying grudge shield, he catches it before it can be impaled in him or the ground, having jumped into the air to close in on you. Exactly as you hoped!

What is your plan of attack, Huanliuxue?

>Launch your self at him, and try to get your fangs on his throat, or else rake his armor away with claws drenched in Destructive Yin Qi (Martial Trial. 65)

>Use Enmity incarnation and become the devil of Monu's grudges, then, using her ice magic, unleash a gale of freezing wind upon him (Magic Trial. DC 45)

>Turn human, hoping a second distraction will work better, and try to land Cat Catches Star on him (Martial Trial. DC 75)

>He's too quick and strong to attack directly. Take a deep breath, and smother him with grudges! Infused with Sorrow through blood Qi! Weakening and draining him of energy! (Magic Trial. DC 55)

>Using Blood Control, turn a portion of your blood acidic, and purposefully allow him to land a blow, hopefully before it causes any internal damage (Trickery/ Magic/ Fortitude Trial. DC 70)

>Write in
>>
>>5551726
>>Use Enmity incarnation and become the devil of Monu's grudges, then, using her ice magic, unleash a gale of freezing wind upon him (Magic Trial. DC 45)
>>
>>5551726
>Use Enmity incarnation and become the devil of Monu's grudges, then, using her ice magic, unleash a gale of freezing wind upon him (Magic Trial. DC 45)
>>
>>5551726
>>He's too quick and strong to attack directly. Take a deep breath, and smother him with grudges! Infused with Sorrow through blood Qi! Weakening and draining him of energy! (Magic Trial. DC 55)
It's a classic.
>>
>>5551726
>Use Enmity incarnation and become the devil of Monu's grudges, then, using her ice magic, unleash a gale of freezing wind upon him (Magic Trial. DC 45)
We shouldn't use the techniques we used against the crow king, and those we used against the other spiders may also be compromised.
>>
>>5551726

>>Turn human, hoping a second distraction will work better, and try to land Cat Catches Star on him (Martial Trial. DC 75)
>>
>>5551726
Can't we do the spell that opens old wounds (I forgot the name)? He's a veteran demon assassin, I'm sure he has his fair share of scars...
>>
>>5551763
Yeah, good idea. But isn't that a touch spell?
>>
>>5551774
Ok, maybe something for next round then after we wear him down with some grudge fuckery

>>He's too quick and strong to attack directly. Take a deep breath, and smother him with grudges! Infused with Sorrow through blood Qi! Weakening and draining him of energy! (Magic Trial. DC 55)
>>
>>5551726
>Use Enmity incarnation and become the devil of Monu's grudges, then, using her ice magic, unleash a gale of freezing wind upon him (Magic Trial. DC 45)
Finally time to see what we can do with this grudge
>>
>>5551726
>Use Enmity incarnation and become the devil of Monu's grudges, then, using her ice magic, unleash a gale of freezing wind upon him (Magic Trial. DC 45)
>>
>>5551763
Didn't we get another ability instead of that one?
>>
>>5551819
They might be getting it mixed up with Cat Court’s effect of giving the rage buried in blood a physical form temporarily.
>>
>>5551763
We don't have it.

>>5551726
>smother with grudges

Set us up for long term victory without revealing trap cards.
>>
>>5551819
>>5551865
Well shit we should get that ASAP
>>
>>5551819
There’s the one we used to kill the Crow King. I believe they’re thinking of that.

>>Use Enmity incarnation and become the devil of Monu's grudges, then, using her ice magic, unleash a gale of freezing wind upon him (Magic Trial. DC 45)

More banter!
>”Ah, you’ve never seen my mother have you? She’s even more beautiful than I am. Even this proud cat must freely admit to that! Allow me to show her to you.”
>>
>>5551884
Yes, it's on my wish list for when we get back home and have our training montage.
The spider hunting and duel interrupted that
>>
>>5551726
>Use Enmity incarnation and become the devil of Monu's grudges, then, using her ice magic, unleash a gale of freezing wind upon him (Magic Trial. DC 45)
Man, i'm loving this Spider Assasin, he's cool.
>>
>>5551884
It is as the other anon says, on the wishlist.

Probably something we get from a breakthrough or other significant personal refinement, as all our other landmark techniques have been. Just think of what we can get with +108 to our modifier training.

>>5551898
We used the Vein draining fang with our claws, made them burst open with blood.
>>
>>5551930
Took a look, it was Cat’s Court that we learned and used against Baoli. The physical form of it is probably where the confusion is like >>5551832 said.
>>
I just had a thought.
If a culvivator remade his entire body, would the old wounds ability become useless, since the scars don't exist anymore, or more effective, since the entire body is a healed wound?
>>
>>5551956
Hmm.

I'd say it's useless. Because what we're doing with the technique is prying open all the injuries that the body healed and remembered, then damaging by exasperbating them.

If you remake a body, at least as far as I'm concerned, you've taken new materials and constructed something new and flawless. We just need to avoid getting injured again, for that creates a flaw.
>>
>>5551956
I had this thought while thinking about how useful it could be against old sis students, and then expandaed on other situations.
For example, patchwork old body would be devastating, since he just stapled new parts. But would it work on his new one, since he had a rebirth? It's still different parts, but they are no longer just stiched together.
Then I remembered that during Huan tribulation to get a new body, she turned into pool of blood and shaped into her new form. Would wounds previous to that new form still count, since it's a new body, and made only of her own parts? Would it be stronger, since you could count melting and being remade into a entire body wound? Or is it something more esoteric, with the blood remembering the wounds of combat/mutilation no matter, but not tribulations, breakthrougs or techniques?
Say that a cultivator remakes his body to be steel, would the old would still work, even though there is no more blood? If something like that is even possible
I think it's important to ask that because body reforging is a staple on these stories.
Also thought experiments can be fun.
>>
>>5551968
The simple answer is it'll work according to the needs of the plot.
>>
>>5551755
I don't see a need to show off techniques he may not know in a battle that isn't to the death. That'll just give him more info for next time if he does come for our head.

But I'm pretty sure we did use enmity incarnation against Baoli. Or at least against someone in his little tournament. He's totally not dead by the way, I'm not paranoid.
>>
>>5552149
Pretty sure we did use our Rooster General form against him. Monu is def new though.
>>
>>5551968
Effectiveness probably also depends from the roll of the dice on special cases.

You have to count some innate spiritual defenses that counteract this or perhaps it doesn't open all wounds ever, but it only reopens those acquired from a specific battle or span of time.

Being a never used before technique grampa has a lot of say in how op it is.

But never the less it would be hella distracting for huan to bristle her whiskers and the enemy starts bleeding randomly.
>>
Do we have a character sheet with our cultivation, techniques, spells, ect. on it yet? If not I might try to put one together at some point.
>>
>>5552316
We do my friend.

I'll need to try and get grandfather to post it in the OP.

https://pastebin.com/x5rCdZpq
>>
>>5552324
Nice. If you do, maybe get him to post the link to the lost thread as well?
>>
>>5552149
>>5552158
Did a quick check, we didn’t use Enmity Incarnation against Baoli. In fact I think we only used it against the child eating Toad and off screen while we were trying to get the attention of Owl Son.
>>
>>5552375
Lost thread was linked the thread after it. So it's fine.
>>
>>5552379
We didn't use it against one of the other fights?
>>
>>5551726
>He's too quick and strong to attack directly. Take a deep breath, and smother him with grudges! Infused with Sorrow through blood Qi! Weakening and draining him of energy! (Magic Trial. DC 55)
Anons are too spooked by a single failure! Immediately jumping to fighting as someone else, bah. That opening was great, both of us testing the other, and both of us finding our opponent simply too canny to catch.
>>
>>5552539
Honestly, since he finds us attractive now I’m wondering how he’ll respond to Monu. I want to mess with him more.

We’ve also never used her before so it’ll be nice to see what embodying her will mean in a “real” fight.
>>
>>5551726
>Use Enmity incarnation and become the devil of Monu's grudges, then, using her ice magic, unleash a gale of freezing wind upon him (Magic Trial. DC 45)

I absolutely want to do this just to see it in action.
>>
>>5552428

We accidentally summoned the Rooster while fighting a demon cannibal, maybe you're thinking of that? But that was outright summoning, not Emnity.
>>
>>5552428
The toad is the only one I recall using it in. We kept our cards pretty close to our hand in the Baoli fight, other than when we used our newly acquired Cat's Court: Spiteful Blood Legacy, after the 108.

>>5552419
Its just good form to link archive, lost threads, pastebins with character info or side info in the intro post... back when quests were on /tg/ we had standards dammit.
>>
>>5552584
Now now, that era is long in the past. And in some ways I’m glad. I can NOT keep up with the update pace of /tg/-style quests anymore. There’s a QM who is running a couple I got into and I burned out hard as a result.

Of course, I’m also the mad lad with 16 quests open so I’m kinda stretched thin anyway.
>>
>>5552583
Must have mixed that then
>>5552597
I'm following 31, but some of them are probably dead
>>
>>5551726
>Use Enmity incarnation and become the devil of Monu's grudges, then, using her ice magic, unleash a gale of freezing wind upon him (Magic Trial. DC 45)
Also voting to not mention our momma to the bug demon hitman. We don't want to give him any cute ideas.
>>
>>5552753

That would be fucking hilarious if a spider assassin tried to poison Monu. She'd critique the work, demonstrate how to produce a better poison, then kill him with it.
>>
Ending the vote now, tallying the result.

Use Enmity incarnation and become the devil of Monu's grudges, then, using her ice magic, unleash a gale of freezing wind upon him:9

He's too quick and strong to attack directly. Take a deep breath, and smother him with grudges! Infused with Sorrow through blood Qi! Weakening and draining him of energy!:4

Turn human, hoping a second distraction will work better, and try to land Cat Catches Star on him:1

”Ah, you’ve never seen my mother have you? She’s even more beautiful than I am. Even this proud cat must freely admit to that! Allow me to show her to you.”:1

So you'll take on Monu's grudge and use her talents/ abilities against the spider assassin, starting by unleashing a bone chilling gale.

Update will arrive shortly
>>
Your mother Monu, has held a potent grudge saturated with anger and hatred as cold as the ice atop mountains. A spite pure and refine as she herself is in beauty, as venomous as the vermin she cultivates to make gu poison and as harsh and unrelenting as a deadly blizzard. And, while playing the role of the rooster general is as restrictive as benefits granted by his directionless enmity are power, Monu should be a much more forgiving of part to play. If only because you're her beloved daughter and protégé and know her almost as well as you know yourself or the whiskers on your face! She is perhaps the only thing beneath the heavens yet living worthy of being idolized by the beneficent and mighty Huanliuxue! And that reverence and filial respect you pay to her, will make it all the easy to act as her, or rather an ideal version of her.

Allowing your eyes to droop, looking bored despite the crooked, toothy grin you flash as if your opponents attacks did little more than amuse you, you transfixed the spider kin and imagined him dressed in the white and blues of the winter blossoming wisdom sect, thinking back to your murdered elder sister xuebai whom you have never known and the children you did know and loved as deeply as Monu adored her little snow fox. A chill runs down the length of your spine, from your neck to the end of your tail as tears fall and immediately freeze to your fur, forming a ring of frost beneath your eyes as your breath becomes white mist. Her grudge rises up your throat, like a snap freeze gripping your throat. It is bitter, but possessing deeper and complex notes of flavor beyond most other grudges. Love scorned and betrayed, confusion turning to wrath. Black curls of smoke intermingle with your frosty breath, sizzling and popping as their heat melts the ice within it. You call forth your mother's spirit and the spite she has carried within her for decades if not centuries, her murderous grudge against the man she once loved and those she called her brothers and sisters, undying and pure as clear ice.

Your fur smooths, becoming fox like and flowing as you tilt your head head, and turn your gross, frog like smile into a teasing, playful smirk. A pale white mist flows around you, circling your paws and infusing your fur to cling to your skin, to fall as powdery snow as you adopt Monu's casual and carefree posture and lift your ears high to look like a foxes. Thinking like you imagine Monu does, visions of pretty girls and boys, flowing dark violet wine and crawling centipedes, spiders and beetles fill your mind, proud memories of both you and the murdered Xuebai. Mummers of regrets, whispers of curses, flirty giggles fill the rest of the space within your head until it feels like it is ready to burst, before dryly read recipes for the most dreadful of poisons known to god or man rise up like morning fog.
cont
>>
>>5552949

A piercing, sober clarity overtakes the clouds of mirth and self indulgence. A bitter cold infects you, as whispers of guilt and declarations of revenge speak themselves with your lips as the mist around your paws turns to hard shackles of ice. Over the face of Huanliuxue, the mask of the toad which falls, as the dark miasma of grudges sinks from your lips, dripping like venom.

Then, as the spider ogre steps onto the rooftop, you yet out a wail of sorrow, throwing back your head as you channel Monu's cold magic and unleash the coldness lurking within her heart in the form of a freezing wind that could snuff out life as easily as it does fire!

"Oh that's unexpected" Is all the spider demon has to say as he faces down the blizzard born of a mother's lament

"Come here boy! The night is young and the air is sweet and chilled, don't you want to be put to bed gently by a beauty such as I?" You mock, rocking your head side to side as you move through the icy wind with ease "Just let the cold take you, intoxicate and muddle your thoughts, relish in this mind numbing chill, the first of my presents to you. Lets go crazy together, Dar~Ling!"

And with that said, you flick your tail, casting a spell to take advantage of the chill around you, causing the already low temperatures to plummet fiercely, and form fist sized icicles to pelt your opponent as he tries not to freeze solid where he stands!"

roll 1d100. Best out of four. DC 45
>>
Rolled 75 (1d100)

>>5552951
>>
Rolled 43 (1d100)

>>5552951
>>
Rolled 25 (1d100)

>>5552951
>>
Rolled 19 (1d100)

>>5552951
>>
>>5552957
Great success! Exactly thirty over DC

update will arrive shortly
>>
>>5552985
I'm glad this was done in hell, could you all imagine if we lose sight of things while drunk on a grudge this deep and depopulated an entire city?
Especially as monu deals with indiscriminate powers like cold and poisons.
>>
>>5552988
Xiongji's bottomless rage would also be a issue in a populated area
>>
Cackling you bound around him, jumping on plates of ice that form beneath your paws, taunting him your coy laughter as he struggles to endure a barrage of ice coming at him from all sides. Ice that after impacting against his armor, even going so far as to dent or pierce through it, begins to spread and lock the plates and joints of his elegant black armor in place, reducing his mobility and creating a horrible cycle of using his strength to break himself free only to be struck by more icicles he could dodge, deflect or cut in half as you assault his ears with haughty mocking giggling, using the snow thrown up by your fur to hide as he quickly begins to lose his cool despite how cold he must be!

"Oh don't tell me you're all tuckered out all ready boy! Where's all your confidence and bravado gone!" You say with a squeal of girlish laughter sure to break the pride of any man "you looked like you knew how to handle a sword, was that all just bluster! Come on! Keep up! You're starting to bore me"

"Nrrr" He snarls, his fangs and mandibles locked shut by his now frozen venom, two of his eight eyes twitching in anger "Yrr wrnt"

"Sorry? What was that? Cat got your tongue? Or is it starting to get a little frost bitten? Surely one as talented as you can over come a challenge as simple as this!" You shout encouragingly, hopping back down to the roofs on the other side of the street, where you lift up your paw and cover your mother as you titter and sneer "Come get me! I'm right over here, waiting"

"Wrrrn" He hisses, shaking his head as the winds continue to buffet and batter him, and more and more icicles crow from him into dazzling pillars of ice. He closes his eyes and slams the pommel of one of his many swords into his face "This is no time to flirt! At least wait till I'm off the clock!"

"Oh you think I'm interested in you? I see you've got an ego bigger than your head' You say coldly "You have a long way to climb before you catch my eye, boy"

He squinted his eyes, clearly baffled as to your sudden change in personality. Maybe he's trying to figure out if its just banter meant to distract him or something more.

"Then I shall sweep you off your feet, watch me dance, girl!" He blusters, trying to match your kittenish provocations with bold words of his own. And rears his ugly spider head back, and spits out a green glob of sizzling goo, before swinging across the street on a single line of web. To the amazement and awe of the now cheering crowd below, who've huddled together for warmth. You hear just as many teeth chattering as you do voices cheering, actually.

"Poison! Against me! Are you an iiiiidiot~?" You declare, laughing brazenly "or is that meant to be a gift? Aww, so thoughtful!"
cont
>>
>>5553001

"What?" He said, as you casually avoided his plunging strike, but let the ball of venom to hit you in the face, feeling it boil and froth under your fur and cackling manically as you saw a look of dread wash over his face as it harmless drips from your whiskers and the chin of your fur, not even scalding your or making you feel sick at all!

"Tastes acidic, but a little sweet" You cackle as he takes a fearful step back, raising his guard "Oh? Did you think I had only one trick up my sleeves? Boy! A proper lady is only worth as much as the number of secret she keeps"

"Oh, this fight is going to be much more interesting than I first anticipated" He said, fear replaced with blood lust that pulses out from him to the beating of his heart in great torrents "How lovely! Join me in my dance and, as you said, lets get crazy!"

He becomes a blur of steel and motion, spinning, hopping and Pirouetting towards you with blinding speed, laughing manically as he tears up the roof with his swords. Which he gathers the tiles he rips out on top of, and throws at you with his very next sequence of wild swings.

How do you try and defend yourself, Huanliuxue?

>Just put a wall of ice between him and you. (magic trial. DC62)

>Drool a mess of poisoned bile, soaking your tongues and fangs in it, and grab a hold of one of his arms mid-swing, before the blade it holds can cut you (Martial trial, DC 73)

>Just keep leaping backwards, taunting and teasing him and trying to muddle and pollute his thoughts (agility trial. DC 55)

>Infuse your claws with poison and ice, and sneak a single claw through the gaps in his armor, sliding past him on a slick of ice (Martial Trial. DC 80)

>Write in
>>
>>5553003
>Just keep leaping backwards, taunting and teasing him and trying to muddle and pollute his thoughts (agility trial. DC 55)
Fluster the spider
>>
>>5552996
I imagine Monu is worse since Xiongji is a more “up close and personal” attacker. He doesn’t have the AOE Monu does to chew through low-level mobs quickly.
He’d probably be quicker to tear through high-level ones. Monu would need a bit of time to let her poisons work, but Xiongji would just rip them apart and move on.

Either way, it turns out grudges worth embodying are destructive! We have the self-writing book, so I hope it’s already got a “Protip: Grudges kill people!” as a warning somewhere.

Y’know, I do wonder something about this form. Can our opponents soothe our grudges to weaken them? Something like an opponent agreeing that the Winter sect is vile for refusing to let a woman mother the cub who saved her.
>>
>>5553003
>Just keep leaping backwards, taunting and teasing him and trying to muddle and pollute his thoughts (agility trial. DC 55)
And just because I’m curious and don’t actually mind if we lose as long as we learn things.
>Mention offhand about how men are useless at courting mothers. Become more enraged when discussing what men do when they learn your daughter is a fox. See if he says something to appease the grudge you embody, and if you must fight to keep it from weakening your form.
>>
>>5553003
>Momentarily hide behind a snow cloud and use this time to create copies of ourselves out of ice, painting them with colored venoms and hiding acidic eating poisons inside of them to be splashed onto the enemy by his own blows.
>>
>>5553003
>Drool a mess of poisoned bile, soaking your tongues and fangs in it, and grab a hold of one of his arms mid-swing, before the blade it holds can cut you (Martial trial, DC 73)

Defeating a spider demon with a poisonous bite is too funny to pass on
>>
>>5553003
>>5553019
Ohh, I like this one. We can keep taunting while hiding amongst the clones.

I’ll refine my write-in as well with some flavor. Not gonna try connecting all of it though.
>”Men like you are useful playthings, at least while you think me solely a jade-like beauty.”
>”Even my beauty isn’t enough to keep them fully enraptured when they learn I’m a mother as well. You’re all easily roped back in, but men don’t know how to behave once they hear of children.”
>”Especially when such children look different from the rest. When they have fur instead of hair. When they have claws instead of hands. When they have many tails when there should BE NONE!”
>”WHEN THE CHILD ISN’T WHAT YOU WANT, YOU KILL HER! WHEN THE MOTHER ISN’T WHAT YOU WANT, YOU BREAK HER! WHAT LITTLE WARMTH I HAD IS NOW GONE! FREEZE IN WINTER THAT REMAINS!
Maybe if he doesn’t interrupt this, we’ll get a power boost for embracing the core of the grudge so tightly. If he does interrupt it, at least we’ll learn that our grudges can be weakened!

I wouldn’t want to test this in our sect. I kinda don’t want them to die. Normal opponents probably couldn’t say the right things to weaken us either. So this makes a good opportunity for research against demons for whom that isn’t a concern and who may be sympathetic to Monu’s plight.
>>
>>5553019
I'll Support that.

It's Cool. literally.
>>
>>5553019
This sounds fun, and i imagine his surprise at being hit by a cat's poison.

Do we actually know any of monu techniques thought?
I imagine she has some really crazy stuff in her sleeves but we haven't been offered the chances to mimic them in this fight.

Anyway these grudge embodiments are incredibly op since it seems like we can copy their dao.
I don't know how much the copycat(heh) power scales off but even if the poison immunity of monu turns "only" into high resistance for us it's astounding.

Yet this is a particular case, an incredible combination of a grudge that powerful and from someone huan knows intimately.
>>
>>5553019
Supporting
>>
>>5553003
>>5553019
and a this +1
>>
>>5553032
Also my vote includes this because yea.

>>5553072
imagine if we'd cultivated the grudges of a birdcaged broken baoli, head kept on a pike style
I voted to kill him but maaan that would've been strong
that idea to cultivate a grudge against ourselves in someone was pretty wild; imagine incarnating the power of something (very strong) constructed to defeat us, the switch-up would be heaven crushing.
>>
>>5553003
>Just put a wall of ice between him and you. (magic trial. DC62)
>>
>>5553180
But setting aside questions of karma, we would need to embody their resentment towards us and i'm not sure that would be healthy.
For those cases we would need to develop a technique to get stronger from their resentment not embody it.
>>
>>5553233
indeed! self hatred isn't our forte.
in others words, we'd have to be doing the grudge manipulation kin of metaphorically wearing the fabric of enmity, in place of embodying it as a mask.
perhaps taking its own technique. although souls with grudges can hate themselves well enough, our embodiment requires a sympathy to their resentments that we can't necessarily conjure from within from the perspective of a true enemy.
>>
>>5553233
>>5553240
Learning to keep ourself as the “master” of the grudge we embody was something we learned the first time we used it if I remember right. I believe it tried to overwhelm us since truly embodying the grudge robs us of the ability to turn it “off”. The grudge doesn’t care if we go back to being Huan, after all.

Embodying a grudge cultivated against us may be harder or impossible, but we have a solid foundation for the attempt at least.
>>
>>5553003
Voting roundup.

>Votes - 8
yPgfHj+G
aLZIAV+F
a/v0TfFU
WONtuIio
dxhQ6mr0
7UgGYwfH
lIgsNHcJ
nBVtJOwA

>Tease him while leaping backwards - 1
yPgfHj+G

>Wall of ice - 1
nBVtJOwA

>Write-in: Hide in snow cloud and create poison-painted ice clones with acid inside them that can dissolve him and his blades as he slashes to find you. - 6
a/v0TfFU
aLZIAV+F
WONtuIio
dxhQ6mr0
7UgGYwfH
lIgsNHcJ

>Write-in: Embrace the grudge of Monu more tightly while vocalizing it, to see if it can be further empowered or if he can weaken it by being sympathetic to the root of Monu’s grudge - 2
> Flavor writing >>5553032
aLZIAV+F
lIgsNHcJ

Looks like the write-in tactic is winning. The science experiment and regular options, not so much.
>>
>>5553420
Hmm. I'll add to my vote here >>5553064 with the science option. It is a reasonable idea.

One more and we do SCIENCE.
>>
>>5553003
>>5553032
Support just for the pretty good write in. Monu is cool af, but holy shit she is probably way more bitter that Huan realizes.
>>
>>5553019
I'll change my vote to support this.
But only if we continue teasing him
>>
>>5553454
If science experiment doesn’t win, I fully expect we’d continue teasing. Monu is good at it.
>”How violent! I would have felt something if you knew where to put that.”
>”Your sword is softening. A shame it weren’t made of sterner stuff.
>”Ah, maybe some supplements would help? I’m quite the alchemist too.”
>”Perhaps you are too inexperienced for a beauty of my caliber.”
>>
>>5553484
I'm hoping he is a viable contact in the underworld.
>>
>>5553525
I’d want to have him as part of a “sect”/court on the hell side. So far it’d be Yùjījiǎo as leader, Lady Anjing as backup leader, this guy as enforcer, and pig as the unreliable broker. Maybe moth merchant as a better one.

We already have a court among the dead and wild. Why not hell too? I wouldn’t want to be a major player since we’re still living and have stuff going on there, but it makes sense for someone challenging the heavens to have at least a small permanent presence in hell.
>>
>>5554348
Seems hell once was part of the world, and was separated either during or a bit before the Ling marital dispute.
So that means that our birthright as the empress of the wild extends to hell as well!
>>
>>5554348
A presence in hell is definitely needed. But I doubt it needs to be a sect, probably just retail focused.
>>
>>5554348
I feel like his loyalty for spiderkind wouldn't be so easily bought.
He is one of their enforcers they deemed competent enough to match with huan and that is not very common.

Even to have his services as a mercenary we would have to patch up relations with the spider matriarch which doesn't seem viable at the moment without a big investment.
>>
>>5554574
I mean, it's not a massive thing. Our being willing to ally with them is itself a big bargaining chip as personal power is always a big consideration in the world of cultivation.
This assassination is just a formality.
>>
Ending the vote now, tallying the results. Meant to do so yesterday, but RL stuff got in the way.

Just keep leaping backwards, taunting and teasing him and trying to muddle and pollute his thoughts:1

”Men like you are useful playthings, at least while you think me solely a jade-like beauty.”...etc/ science experiment:4

Just put a wall of ice between him and you. :1

Momentarily hide behind a snow cloud and use this time to create copies of ourselves out of ice, painting them with colored venoms and hiding acidic eating poisons inside of them to be splashed onto the enemy by his own blows.:7

Drool a mess of poisoned bile, soaking your tongues and fangs in it, and grab a hold of one of his arms mid-swing, before the blade it holds can cut you:1

So the write in of ice puppets coated in venoms and acidic poisons wins! DC will be revealed in the intermediary update

>>5553420
Thank you for the help, Junior
>>
>>5555774
Dang. There’s an extra vote in the roundup, but that’s not enough to get the other write-in inserted so it’s a moot point.

At least we can keep applying ice burns through our teasing.
>>
Shaking yourself, like a dog would to get dry, you fill the air with a cloud of powder, white snow, that hangs on the wailing winds and in some places even hardens into ice. Flicking your tail and shaking your paws, you keep the cloud nice and dense, forming an impenetrable screen around yourself, only able to be see as a vague shadowy outline.

"Tch tch" You click your tongue, as you manipulate your shadow into wavering and becoming even more distorted with a little bit of Yin Qi manipulation, pulling, tugging and stretching it to make your exact location beneath the cloud of snow and ice untraceable "No peeking! You're not some sort of beast in heat are you? Hiding behind a gentleman's mask? How Scaaary~"

Swaying side to side, you dodge the flying roof tiles as you work a somewhat complicated bit of magic, it isn't quite a spell, but you know Monu has experience in creating and controlling puppets. She used them to help build your sect's temple and still uses a few to keep it clean so the outer disciples can do more important and strenuous work. Even if they can't cultivate, she told you one day, its good to make sure they're nice and strong even if they lack potential. SO, it stands to reason, even if you've never really had an interest in the art of making and controlling puppets, and actually still have a chip on your shoulder concerning them and might be the reason some of your mother's wooden puppets were found mauled and clawed into splinters and sawdust, after you ran into them while half awake and mistook them for a certain handful of troublesome and loathsome stone goliaths with triangular heads, that while acting as her and borrowing her multitude of skills, that you can create and puppet magical puppets yourself! Even if you feel a certain shame in doing so!

Opening your mouth, you spit up five balls of flesh and bone eating poison, and using your specter lightness skill, hold them in the air long enough for a thin surface of ice to form, to keep them from spilling out and melting through the roof.

"Don't think blinding me will slow me down" Your opponent boasts as he continues his skipping and bounding charge towards you, becoming a twister of steel and spraying venom "I can sense even the slightest and most subtle of vibrations, every move you make I can track"

"Any worthwhile admirer can, dar~ling" You tease as you create five large blocks of ice around the five balls of flesh corroding poison and with a few swipes of your claws cut them into the shape of a truly beautiful cat "I didn't know you were such a fan, or should I call you a stalker? The line between the two is rather thin and muddled, I suppose the only thing really separating them is how they present themselves"
Cont
>>
>>5555793

"Well, is wanting to stab their idol the action of a fan or stalker?" He laughs back as you paint the ice statues with colorful and exotic venoms, from all sorts of different types of frogs, lizards, serpents, spiders and centipedes, many of which Monu has told you of before in the same way she would reminisce about her past conquests. Of both the martial and romantic kind.

He lunges, stabbing five of his eight blades where he thinks you are. But you leapt in the air and began to float their, curling and bumbling around as his swords pierce through nothing, besides clay roof tiles.

Landing back down behind him, you yawn and with a swipe of your paw banish the snow cloud, revealing the five ice puppets and yourself.

"What a fierce thrust, and what brutish strength! I might've felt something if only you knew where to put them" You sneer, as you and your poison filled doppelgangers circle around him "Maybe you'll have more of a chance now? Or perhaps you'll be overwhelmed! Inexperienced as you are with a beauty of my caliber! Surely six fairy cats will make you weak in the knees, young boy!"

"Okay, okay, after this is done, you'll have to tell me how you're doing this" He laughs, standing slack and calm in the middle of six circling Huanliuxue's "Its so rare to find an opponent as full of surprises as you are, every time I think I have you figured out, you reveal a new, unexpected technique"

"Exciting isn't it? Wondering which layer will be the last to be removed until all is laid bare?" You giggle girlishly, making sure your copies move their mouths in sync with your own

"And there's that as well. I've never even met a demon who could flirt while partaking in a deadly battle" He said, rolling his eight eyes "You're a strange one, bloodshed"

You smirk, thinking, 'well if you find that fun, you'll love the surprise I have waiting for you'

Roll 1d100. Best out of four. DC 66. Trickery/ Luck trial
>>
Rolled 77 (1d100)

>>5555798
>>
Rolled 73 (1d100)

>>5555798
DAO
>>
Rolled 95 (1d100)

>>5555798
>>
Rolled 79 (1d100)

>>5555798
>>
>>5554348
Anjing isn't a leader in any way or form so her being there is almost purely to aid with the construction and facilitation of fashion.

If we induct her into our group, it'll probably be best for using her as a grounding element in hell. Especially when she gets stronger to act as deterrent.

Yujijao makes sense as our eyes down here, though her pride may cause issues. Issues that unlike us, she may not be able to solve.

I'd say wait till people get to golden core before we are able to leave them to their buissness.
>>
>>5555809
Good success. 20 over DC, A hair's breadth from being 30 over!

Update will arrive shortly
>>
"Strange? How mean! How am I strange?" You pout and mewl, with an exaggerated whimper in your voice and a painfully fake pitiful look in your eyes "Such a harsh tongue! I see I'll need to teach it how to wag in a pleasant way! That's now way to talk to a lady you know!"

"Hrrn" He snarls, not giving your relentless teasing any response besides that and and confused look in his eyes, the waves of his killing intent wavering as he tries to figure out the trick behind how you suddenly multiplied, which must be truly difficult when he has to also contend with constant pestering and playful mockery. His reactions are almost adorable, when you look at them from what you think would be Monu's view of them. Nervous, hesitant and hiding it all beneath a gruff exterior. You can see why she likes to play with other's hearts so much. Its actually quite fun, in a weird way.

"Oh, has this cat taken your tongue?" You titter, prancing about him as you can easily imagine is ruby eyes swirling with bafflement as he tries to comprehend the true form of this strange technique or your intentions. Why, if you squint your eyes, you think you can see smoke billowing out of his ears. Wait, do spiders even have ears? A question for later!

"Or do you just not want to embarrass yourself. There's nothing to be ashamed of, all cats know how to steal one's breath away" You tease as you saunter and slink around him, glaring at him with twelve eyes as he tries to keep track of each of the Huanliuxue's stalking around him, his eight sword arms flicking this way and turning that way as he tries to keep up. If he really can sense vibrations, he's probably figured out something is off about your doppelgangers, but because of how vibrations travel in ripples, your own real footsteps prevent him from sussing out which of the Huanliuxue's are the real one and which are the puppets. Maybe its their weight, but the ripples from your steps bungle his sense and confuse him as much as your toying with him does!

"King Yama dammit!" He cries out, squinting his eyes like he's just been struck by one hell of a headache "Could you be quiet! Your constant chattering and vapid remarks is...Oh, that's your plan, isn't it?"

"Most men like to hear girl's talk, though I think you'd prefer me screaming" You giggle, hopping and skipping around him with your ice clones

"The flirting, the teasing, the lurid remarks. Like the cold. It's meant to confuse me, to mess with my head! What a dirty trick!" He shouts out loud as if he wants all the people huddled together in the street below to hear.

"Are you so sure?" You ask with drooping eyes and a bowed head "B~o~y~?"

His eye twitches

"Grrnth" He chokes, and to keep from dwelling on your words or the emotions they must be enticing within his little spider heart, he throws himself at the near Huanliuxue, swords raised and eyes burning with as much anger as they are confusion

Unfortunately for him, the real you was two puppets behind that one.
Cont
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>>5555839

And he's swinging so blindly and so furiously, he moves from the first fake to another, before he realizes something has sprayed out of the one he's just cut in half and decapitated, and by time he notices the sizzling sounds, its too late.

All eight of his eyes widen as he sees one of his arms melting, the armor he wore already oozing down his bristly haired limb, and then, as he move to take advantage of this pause in movement, his eyes flick to his other arm intime to see the poison eating away the sword it held and already dripping onto his flesh! So quick is the poison to burn and melt through flesh, that it can't be felt until it touches the marrow of its victims bones. And spiders don't have marrow or bones, in fact, you aren't sure they even have nerves! You really need to study spiders, once you're done fighting this one.

He sprints away, before your claws, also coated in acidic poison, can rake his back. You frown, seeing he's cut away the two arms that were coated in the special surprise you snuck inside of your puppets.

"Okay...Okay" He pants, deliriously "What the hell. I can't...you're..I didn't think you had...so many and so varied techniques! I thought I had you figured out as an opponent, as a martial artist, as a sorcerer, as a cultivator! Death ya know, grudges and...and all that, blood. It was a unique fighting style, befitting a heretic of cultivation, but, I could...could figure it out, solve it once I...I fought you but, poison! Ice?! I mapped out your meridians when we fought! and your spirit roots They had ghostly Yin Qi, Pure and refined, and Raw, untampered blood QI! Where is this ice magic coming from, this cold water Qi? And the poison! I couldn't detect even a drop of toxin in your blood! So what's up with that! What's up with that!"

"Seems I'm a little too much for you too handle, after all. Good thing you and I decided this was just a dalliance, rather than anything serious" You snicker as you stalk towards him, allowing your spiritual aura wash over him as he stares at the guy, entirely unbothered by the lack of his arms "But I thought you were harder than you're proving to be, ya know, made of sterner stuff. But now you're panicking, freaking out. It's kind of cute, I like my prey helpless, ya know"

The Spider is completely confused. +20 to every roll against him

"Ain't helpless, just...need time to study you..." He mutters, rubbing his head "Come get me"

"Are you sure I'm the girl here?" You mock, rocking your head side to side with a jubilant smile "You should be more aggressive! Aren't you a man?! I shouldn't have to make the first move, didn't your papa teach you anything?"

"Mama ate papa" He said cheerfully as if it is the most natural thing in the world. Maybe it is for spiders. You wouldn't know, you aren't a scholar of spiders.

"Huh, gross" you say back, already planning your next attack "Guess that explains why your family is so messed up"

Cont
>>
>>5555840

How do you take advantage of his confusion, Huanliuxue?

>Drop Monu's mask and instead Wear Xiongjis! The sudden shift in personality, mannerism and speech will certainly mess with him! Then beat him to a pulp! (Martial Trial. DC 70. +20)

>Use your specter lightness skill, catching him inside of it, and make him think you've slowed his perceptions with the poison that melted his arms, before knocking him over (Trickery Trial. DC 40. DC lowered by previous actions. +20)

>Use the Vein Hunting Eye to find find his weak points by tracing his life energy, then strike them with open palms, one infused with Metal Qi and the Other carrying an ice spell! (Martial trial. DC 90. +20)

>Monu likes curses. So curse him! (Magic trial. DC 80. +20,Curse effect randomly determined, since Huanliuxue isn't experienced is using them)

>Offer to call it a draw.

>Write in
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>>5555843
>Use your specter lightness skill, catching him inside of it, and make him think you've slowed his perceptions with the poison that melted his arms, before knocking him over (Trickery Trial. DC 40. DC lowered by previous actions. +20)
Seems the most funny to me
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>>5555843
>We've got to make this last bit look good! Then we can stop, or maybe you'd like for me to go even harder~

>Use the spectre lightness skill to knock him over.

But yeah, lets just make this the last move look good for the spectators, prove that we can kill spiders because we're that fuckin' good.
>>
>>5555843
>Offer to call it a draw
>… if he promises to look after Lady Anjing while you’re gone and tell you of other worthwhile spiders and other demons he believes we’d enjoy the company of.
>As an aside, ask if he’d be willing to be a sparring partner in the future. You could benefit from a partner with more presence than a ghost yet also can’t die.
If he refuses, or doesn’t give enough info for us to be satisfied then
>Use your specter lightness skill, catching him inside of it, and make him think you've slowed his perceptions with the poison that melted his arms, before knocking him over (Trickery Trial. DC 40. DC lowered by previous actions. +20)
Cursing would be nice to try, but I don’t want to hurt him with something we don’t understand. Experimenting nearly killed an entire village long ago.

Interesting to note that he could see our unpolluted blood qi. He hasn’t been close enough to read our roots directly, so he (and others in hell) must simply recognize the purity of what we’re using from a distance. Which means others can learn of our heretical nature through demons.
>>
>>5555843
>Use the Vein Hunting Eye to find find his weak points by tracing his life energy, then strike them with open palms, one infused with Metal Qi and the Other carrying an ice spell! (Martial trial. DC 90. +20)
>>
>>5555843
>>5555860
Mhm, Baoli pointed it out too, guess it's not that unique of a talent. Come to think of it, we never did quite figure out the /why/ of why someone like Baoli had a chip on his shoulder about corrupting Blood Qi, outside of generalized demon corrupts pure things context etc.

Also +1. The more we can get out of this the better, competent allies in hell are hard to come by. I expect he'll have a point of pride in exacting what he was sent here to do, making the offer first will force his consideration to options fewer. IE draw or be mauled to death.
>>
>>5555860
this is a better advancement scheme. I'll switch to support it.

I feel like the statement has been made here.
>>
>>5555860
+1
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>>5555860
+1
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>>5555843
>Use your specter lightness skill, catching him inside of it, and make him think you've slowed his perceptions with the poison that melted his arms, before knocking him over and removing his remaining limbs(Trickery Trial. DC 40. DC lowered by previous actions. +20)
>If successful, call for a draw

This is much better imo
>>
>>5556032
Now this I can get behind
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>>5556032
You just added in the original vote that we take his other arms, my guy. How's that better?
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>>5556230
Oh shit, I didn't even see he added removing his other arms.
I just saw the part of declaring a draw after we use the lightness, which is what I would support.
>>
>>5556230
You answered your own question. We've just started drawing blood and are already calling a draw? Chop off some other limbs at least before doing so.
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>>5555843
>Use your specter lightness skill, catching him inside of it, and make him think you've slowed his perceptions with the poison that melted his arms, before knocking him over and removing a couple more of his remaining limbs(Trickery Trial. DC 40. DC lowered by previous actions. +20)
>If successful, call for a draw

Just remove another pair so he's down to 4 like all other decent animals.

>>5556252
He was acting a bit unhinged so i'm not sure he wouldn't have cut off our limbs if given the option,
Besides given the masochistic nature of spider mating he probably even expects a few limbs to be a good trade for a dance with a dangerous female.
So i'm voting for the sadistic side of cats to surface.
>>
>>5556318
Let's not tell him that "cats eat spiders" or he might cream himself.
>>
>>5555843
>Offer to call it a draw.

Too good of a roll might kill or cripple him at this point, and this guy is too great to kill.
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>>5556841
higher rolls is the better outcome. We won't kill or cripple him unless we want to.
>>
Count

>Votes - 10
yPgfHj+G
WONtuIio
aLZIAV+F
a/v0TfFU
HWtqfN5G
wb6qQp9Y
pYIy8ll8
HhUpbQCY
dxhQ6mr0
fELAs3vc

>Knock over + Drawn - 1
yPgfHj+G

>Tease - 0 (1)
WONtuIio (?)

>Conditional Draw + conditional Knock over - 5
aLZIAV+F
HWtqfN5G
WONtuIio
wb6qQp9Y
pYIy8ll8

>Weak point - 1
a/v0TfFU

>Arm removal + Drawn - 2
HhUpbQCY
dxhQ6mr0

>Drawn - 1
fELAs3vc

Tease has a ? because WONtuIio changed his voted, but I think it still could be used in case Spider-Man here refuses the draw
Also I put a draw after knocking over because I like the idea of beating him up ad then saying it's a draw, but don't want to rip off his other arms
>>
>>5557129
There is a distinctly catlike essence to either option, honestly. They're both kinda perfect and I'd be fine with either but don't want to complicate things too much more.
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>>5555860
Supporting. Also funny how the puppet incident is still a source of trauma for Huan.
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>>5557956
Did we ever destroy those puppets after we became stronger? I don't remember.
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>>5558038
We did not.

We should probably turn it into a training area for our disciples. The initial goal is to steal what they are guarding. The next goal is to place something else back there.

Continue until only one golem is left. Then see how smart it is.
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>>5558048
While this is the smart option, my blood calls for vengeance and retribution
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>>5558051
For that, I’d wait until Golden Core, have our disciples finish off every golem but two, and power through the last couple golems at their best. I’d leave two at first so they can engage in more complex tactics, and after destroying one we can see what the solo golem is capable of.

If we want to be sadistic, we can really rub in its failure afterward. It may be smart enough to feel shame!
>>
>>5558048
>inb4 one disciples don't struggle anywhere near as much as we did with then
>>
Am I the only one who thinks Huan would rather be fascinated by what is essentially an AI becoming sentient and effectively creating a new kind of life? I wonder if they have the potential to form a construct civ down there.
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>>5558176
I mean yeah, but also. . . >>5558051
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>>5558176
It's very tempting to get them on our side, to me at least. But Huan is more traumatized by them than by owls at this point.

There's also how OP sentient objects-turned cultivator can get, and yet another thing that's likely a deep heresy to our world. But it vilely outsmarted us once, can we really overlook that?
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>>5558230
Maybe we could get Feiqing and Monu to work together dissecting the puppets, so they can create one of their own.
And then we can get that one to awaken and cultivate.
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>>5558234
It should be possible, but I'm more thinking about the awakening circumstance of the tomb guard to be peculiarly unique. A series of stone warrior puppets that awakened (or were gifted) into a clever multitasking/multipossession dao isn't something I can reasonably see us repeating in a decent timeframe.

Particularly given the circumstances of a Qi filled library of manuals and knowledge in a yin tomb for what we know has to have been a ridiculous amount of time, and as far as we can tell it's just one soul using many vessels. It could also be a combination of spirits whom reflected that guardian role nature then condensing into an awakened mind of sorts, which puts it on the more interesting spectrum with evolvable monsters, which means it could just get stronger on its own without too much of a push.

The deepest concern I see for us in making it a servant is that it would need more materially convincing effort than basic diplomacy to redirect its objectives, and if it can't speak or won't it'll have to be better off being dust or training material.

If we want to make an experiment of it, I'd suggest trying for capture at the least. To avoid the whole "now that the frog is dissected we have learned it is dead" problem that might occur with a sapient statue.
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Ending the vote, tallying the result now. Sorry for vanishing for three days, wasn't feeling well and was in a bad mood, since I lost two beloved pieces of teaware due to butterfingers and a hardfloor. Loved all the discussion

Use your specter lightness skill, catching him inside of it, and make him think you've slowed his perceptions with the poison that melted his arms, before knocking him over:10
- And removing more limbs, if successful call a draw:2

"We've got to make this last bit look good! Then we can stop, or maybe you'd like for me to go even harder~":1

Offer to call it a draw:7
- if he promises to look after Lady Anjing while you’re gone and tell you of other worthwhile spiders and other demons he believes we’d enjoy the company of/ and be your sparring partner:6

Use the Vein Hunting Eye to find find his weak points by tracing his life energy, then strike them with open palms, one infused with Metal Qi and the Other carrying an ice spell!:1

So you'll use the specter lightness skill to mess with his head and try to knock him over. And if successful offer a draw...with some extra demands

Update will arrive shortly


>>5557129
and as always, I appreciate the help. Tallying is an austere duty.
>>
And a certain mischievous, playful whim speaks up as you calmly plan out the destruction of your, honestly, polite and endearing opponent. Maybe its because of trying to think like your mother to better act as her or just because you're fond of those who shower you with praise and the respect you deserve yet are so often denied or even scorned for expecting. Its clear this spider's head has gone all screwy and he'd believe anything you told him, since to his many eyes, you've proven capable of many feats and strange techniques.

And that makes him open to all sorts of tricks and illusions, such as the interesting effect of your specter lightness skill, which you've been holding back in using against him despite how easy it would've made avoiding his eight swords or keeping up with his flashy movements. And that's because you've noticed that whenever you use that ability against anyone with experience as a warrior or blessed with the simple instinct of one, they eventually realize its trick and that it doesn't truly slow time, just the perception of it in a bubble. And to most, this wouldn't be a true distinction between truly slowing time or just one's view of it. But this spider is clearly skilled enough to alter his reaction times and movements to overcome that hurdle. And while you could use the "Flickering" of the Youling Qinggong against him with the phantom cat step and not risk him figuring out the true form of either technique, you have a feeling he'd be able to keep up with you, perhaps even if you included the blood torrent rush

But now his head has turned to mush, because of your teasing words and pulling of unseen techniques out of your sleeves like some kind of stage magician. Which means, you can make him believe the specter lightness skill is anything. And thus keep its secret from spreading amongst dangerous demons who might want a cup of cat blood or a new fur coat to flaunt!

The whim, is deciding what to disguise your most basic yet perhaps most reliable technique as! You could strengthen the illusion of it altering a sphere of time, or some kind of hex rather than a variation of the lightness skill. Or...or you could fuck with him! Really mess around with him! You've been having a great time messing with him. And he already thinks you are a poison user, since he doesn't realize the techniques you've used and your flirty manner are just you pretending to be Monu. And technically you are a poison user, though you wouldn't call yourself as such if only because for all your pride as an alchemist, your knowledge is a pale shadow of your mothers. Even if you still keep a few nasty concoctions on you at all times, like the Maddening Salve refined from poison Ivy, one of the first you learned to make.

But you could make a poison that alters perceptions. It'd be pretty easy. And He must know that, and imagine you could make something far nastier. And he must know Cat's like to play with their prey.
cont
>>
>>5559815

Flashing a wicked grin, you put this nasty plot into motion. He's on the defensive, not daring to take the chance to approach you and risk falling for another trick or leave himself open for a new, yet unseen technique. He's gone passive, studying you, know that you've only shown him a fraction of your ability.

Taking in a breath, you let out a sigh filled with longing. Which would be enough to fluster him, but from the vapors you put in your breath, dying it lilac and green, set him on edge. The poisons that give your foggy breath its color in the deathly cold air are more less harmless and couldn't even kill a man with a normal physique, a weak one might die if they breathed in too much, but one with a properly trained, tempered, or refined would only have an irritation in their lungs and a dry cough. And maybe a bit of internal bleeding. Nothing to worry about.

Which probably would make him imagine the poisonous cloud to be more treacherous than it truly is, disguising itself as some harmless bad air. And that's when you'll trick him, making him think your specter lightness skill is just a toxic haze. Then you'll knock him on his back, humiliating him before offering him a draw, making it clear to the crowd and him that he's outmatched thus allowing him to forfeit without losing too much face.

Still grinning, you step forward, and activate your Youling Qinggong

Roll 1d100+20. DC 40. Best out of four
>>
Rolled 74 + 20 (1d100 + 20)

>>5559816
there is a certain poetry to a creature whom ordinarily exists with so many limbs being so summarily tripped
>>
Rolled 97 + 20 (1d100 + 20)

>>5559816
It is almost midnight here, but I am still able to roll.
>>
>>5559838
and roll like a god, anon. beautous
>>
Rolled 1 + 20 (1d100 + 20)

>>5559816
Oh no it was all a trick and he's been baiting us the entire time, this 1 will prove it.
>>
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1.9 MB
1.9 MB GIF
>>5559851
>>
Rolled 98 + 20 (1d100 + 20)

>>5559816
>>
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119 KB
119 KB PNG
>>5559851
>>
>>5559851
This being the first one we have rolled, and it being best of 4, grandfather may only have crits take precedence when nothing has passed.

I hope so anyway, two wasted 95+s would hurt
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>>5559897
>the 95+'s are for tripping the spidder
>the 1 is for the demon lord replacement taking off his invisibility cloak and cutting our tail off
>>
>>5559901
Don't worry I'm sure the worst that could happen is the spoder successfully flirts back and makes it to first base. Or he notches Huan's other ear. I'm just happy I finally managed to call a natty.
>>
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>>5559851
Well that's eerie. Update will arrive shortly
>>
Immediately, you realize something is wrong and your plan has gone awry as soon as you set it into motion. And you only realize this because the specter lightness skill allows you to see the movements of the spider in excruciatingly slow and ponderous detail. Movements that would otherwise be missed by the speed of their motions or the intricacies of them. Slight twitches, subtle changes in demeanor, a minor shift in the stance. You close your eyes, having already bowed your head to headbutt him in the chest and knock him over comically, seething in silence as a surge of bile fills your throat and the sensation of burning shame blots out most of your thoughts. But despite your wounded pride and the rising waves of indignity washing over your mind, you retain enough composure and clarity of consciousness to understand what has happened and which step in your plan that you've bungled with a precision akin a hawk swooping upon a field mouse.

He...he was in the crowd when you fought the crow king. You used the specter lightness skill in your bouts then. As did Qiang. It wouldn't take a genius to figure out the basics of the technique, that it was a variation of the common Qinggong. And from there, a sharp mind could theorize and meditate upon what it had seen and create a vision of the technique it has seen only briefly. While this is exactly what you were hoping to take advantage of. You forgot just how patient spiders are, waiting in their webs for their prey. His confusion wasn't an act, thankfully for your self esteem and proud bearing, its just that he managed to get ahold of himself the moment he was met with something he recognized. And the fact he had enough presence of a mind to recognize anything when you could practically see the stars swirling above his head, speaks to the depths of this assassins disciple. Should've taken that into account, you scold yourself, considering Qiang herself was once an assassin.

But, he doesn't know exactly how the Youling Qinggong functions, or the scope of its power and influence on those who fall within its grasp. This isn't a total loss! In a show of what others would deem as outrageous stubbornness, you keep your head bowed and do not stop running. Stopping your charge, stepping back or turning away would be the logical course of action to take. He's adopted an aggressive stance again, forsaking all but one of his six remaining swords, to grip it with his six remaining hands from hilt, to guard to blade to muster all of his strength behind one, singular, desperate strike. Shifting his clawed feet back, turning to face you with his shoulder as silk wraps around his chosen blade, ready for anything your can throw at him. But mostly he's ready to catch you in the middle of your pounce. Which is why, after being faced with so many unexpected kinds of magic and attacks, he will not expect you to be as bullheaded as the first Ascended beast and keep running at him!
Cont
>>
>>5559972

Truly you're a genius without peer!

His narrowed eyes widen as you get close enough to claw him, and he switches his blade around, turning its cutting edges away from you as you lift up your lead and jump. The crown of your skull meets his stomach, as the flat of his sword meets the back of your head and neck. Oh, he was able to adjust his movements under the influence of distorted time. Just like you knew he'd be able to. Just like old Crooked fang did. Despite the cumbersome flow of time around him, he was able to accurately judge his slowed motion against your unaltered movement and react accordingly. The world within the sphere of altered time fractures, as your concentration breaks with the ripples of pain rolling around your skull and stabbing into your neck, and all within the specter lightness skill's range stutters as time snaps back to its usual pace. A snap that increases both of your momentum greatly as time doesn't so much as stagger as it returns to its natural rhythm.

He goes flying back, but keeps his footing. Roof tiles break beneath his heels as he maintains his stance even as he is thrown over the edge of the building even though your head did dent his armor. So in away, you succeeded! You knocked him off his feet, even though you had to knock him off the building to do so! However, you got hammered like a nail through the building, your delirious mania clearing as your skull rings like a bell.

Why did you do that!? That was idiotic! Chalking the mistake up to panic and wounded pride spurned by being outwitted by someone you underestimated, which isn't the first time such a rare occurrence has happened, but at least this time the one who came out on top over you wasn't a walking pile of rocks. Stewing in anger, you lay on your back, gathering yourself and thinking a carefully cultivated sequence of thoughts to prevent Monu's mask from slipping and falling away and taking with it the bitter cold that has kept the demon who just slammed you through a building sluggish. Last thing you need is him not to be covered in ice and having to constantly break himself free to be able to move.

You can't be getting overly confident or...at least any more cocky. You made a mistake, that's true, but it isn't a disastrous one by any measures and you're sure you'll come out on top still! After all, having your skull hammered really brought renewed clarity to your mind and sharpened it! While he's probably imagining that your fuck up was all a part of your plan after your earlier trick with the venom painted ice puppets! But even so, that knowledge isn't enough to keep a dark cloud of humiliations from falling over you! Choking on the bile of shame, you rolled off your back and stood up

"Idiot. Idiot. Idiot" You curse yourself as the smoke clears and you see a black armed forge demon peering at you over a countertop. It seems you've fallen in a weapon store! How fortuitous!
Cont
>>
>>5559975

If anyone stops to ask you if you had foreseen this, you'll act like you had and indeed had plotted every move of the fight to keep anyone from talking behind your back! Quickly you clear the daze of being forced so suddenly back into perceiving the world at its usual pace from your eyes and thoughts and with renewed vigor and a pounding headache, begin planning your next move.

Stepping forward, you find you have a not insignificant ache in your back, hurting you enough to make moving around with anything resembling your preferred and natural grace and elegance a challenge.

Which makes you think back again to your battle against that child eating tiger. He hurt your back to. Damn near broke it. A wisp of a grudge rises from your snout as you ruminate ruefully on how that old bastard battered you around like a ball of yarn. The trembling store owner looks up through the Huanliuxue skylight now gracing his establishment, as snow falls through it. You can hear the spider plodding over, stomping his way across the roof.

But you can also see two battle axes.

Old Crooked Fang. Fu chopped his head off with his first axe.

You frown, now in deep thought, since its surprisingly hard to keep a clear stream of thought when your head has been pounded by a massive spider ogre demon wielding a sword thick enough to slice cleaning through a boulder. And certainly, slamming your head against hard metal hard enough to dent it isn't helping your keep what's happening inside of your head steady and coherent. Seems this honorable duel has degenerated to become a brawl between the confused and the concussed.

What do you do, Huanliuxue?

>Cure your migraine and concussion with a bit of Blood Qi Manipulation. A lesser cultivator wouldn't dare to attempt messing with their own brain, but you've practiced this technique before and for you it is as easy as condencing Qi in any other organ (Magic trial. DC 80. DC sharply raised due to head pain)

>Shamelessly offer the draw, since both of you have made fools of yourselves and its pointless to lose more face fighting in your current state

>Turn human, and grab the two axes and see what becoming the devil of Fu's grudge will do for you! His bitter resentment has always been strong, and you yourself planted the seeds of this grudge! (Martial Trial. DC 70. +10)

>Actually spew a "Poisonous" cloud on him. This might be a friendly bout, but you have no problem resorting to dirty tricks like drowning him in the weight of enmity and draining sorrow! (Magic trial. DC 75. +10)

>write in

You got bonked.
>>
>>5559977
>>Turn human, and grab the two axes and see what becoming the devil of Fu's grudge will do for you! His bitter resentment has always been strong, and you yourself planted the seeds of this grudge! (Martial Trial. DC 70. +10)
Eight swords meets two axes. Well, six swords now.
>>
>>5559977
>Turn human, and grab the two axes and see what becoming the devil of Fu's grudge will do for you! His bitter resentment has always been strong, and you yourself planted the seeds of this grudge! (Martial Trial. DC 70. +10)
>>
>>5559977
>Shamelessly offer the draw, since both of you have made fools of yourselves and its pointless to lose more face fighting in your current state

Turn human
Exit the forge in a dignified manner wearing a scowl of annoyance
Then greet him like so.

"The well of my patience has dried up, accept that this is the depth of my techniques you will see today or the next you will witness will be your last."

Now intimidation may not work on a trained assassin/swordsman, but the tone shift should make him reconsider at least.
>>
>>5559977
I want to mantle Fu. But it is best to call it quits.
Though if we call it quits, I think we can still call him up on favoring Anj with protection and good relations. After all, no reason for a few worthless branches to act as a barrier between good relations with another sect.
>>
>>5559977
>Turn human, and grab the two axes and see what becoming the devil of Fu's grudge will do for you! His bitter resentment has always been strong, and you yourself planted the seeds of this grudge! (Martial Trial. DC 70. +10)
Interestingly, if crits take precedence then rolling Bo4 puts us at more risk of a crit fail. Currently it's 3.9%
>>
>>5560032
they appear to possess a "they don't override a success but they do cause us a mischief"

We DID knock him down, we just got hurt in doing so.
>>
>>5559977
>Shamelessly offer the draw, since both of you have made fools of yourselves and its pointless to lose more face fighting in your current state
>>5560032
I have been worried about the bo4 increasing critfail chance for a while.
>>
>>5560032
>>5560106
Well i mean, 4 is the number of death so it fits.
But so long as huan still has her 9 lives however that's a lesser concern.
>>
>>5559977
>>5559989
>Shamelessly offer the draw, since both of you have made fools of yourselves and its pointless to lose more face fighting in your current state
I’ll back either the flavor from >>5559989 or
>”My head is ringing and this cat is no longer willing to play with her food. But I’m aware enough to know you’d find being devoured by me an honor when it’s really a waste of a good demon. Accept a draw so I made free myself of this headache in peace and return to being pleasant with you.”
>>
>>5559977
>Turn human, and grab the two axes and see what becoming the devil of Fu's grudge will do for you! His bitter resentment has always been strong, and you yourself planted the seeds of this grudge! (Martial Trial. DC 70. +10)
>>
>>5559977
>Turn human, and grab the two axes and see what becoming the devil of Fu's grudge will do for you! His bitter resentment has always been strong, and you yourself planted the seeds of this grudge! (Martial Trial. DC 70. +10)

Tough choice but I can't resist making this fight even more confusing and convoluted. Greatly enjoyed this update! "LoL I'll just barrel through and headbutt the bug, truly my genius is unmatched beyond and above the heavens!"
>>
>>5559977
>Turn human, and grab the two axes and see what becoming the devil of Fu's grudge will do for you! His bitter resentment has always been strong, and you yourself planted the seeds of this grudge! (Martial Trial. DC 70. +10)
>>
>>5559977
>Turn human, and grab the two axes and see what becoming the devil of Fu's grudge will do for you! His bitter resentment has always been strong, and you yourself planted the seeds of this grudge! (Martial Trial. DC 70. +10)
>Pay for the damage first
>>
>>5560706
>Pay for the damage first
Oh yeaaah.
+1 to not being a hypocrite
>>
>>5559977
>>5560161
Adding
>Pay for the damage first
to my vote. Priorities! I should have had them!

I blame the concussion.
>>
>>5560161
>>5560745
+1
I don't wanna hurt our spider friend anymore. And I really hope we can mend his limbs or grow him new ones with our Blood Qi, and that's something that surely can help us understand more the uses of it and if there's some weird interaction in using it on demons
>>
>>5560706
Yeah, we should pay for this
Secluded gang was right
>>
>>5559975
I don't like how this critfail was handled. Critfails are supposed to be bouts of bad luck, not the character becoming an idiot out of the blue.
>>
>>5560993
I think the idiocy was more on the vote chosen to use a skill the enemy knew.
And even then it was a toss up if the spider had been able to see through the technique and/or develop a counter.

We lost the roll resulting in our attack being less successful and the reposte got us on the backfoot.

So more bad luck and happenstance forcing huan into a bad choice than true idiocy on her part.
>>
>>5561090
Nah, the skill chosen is on us, but continuing with the attack was pure narrative idiocy.
>>
>>5561090
I think if that choice was truely bad, the DC wouldn't have been so low.
It's probably just an IC justification for the failure, while OOC we know that wa sjust bad luck.
>>
>>5559977
>Turn human, and grab the two axes and see what becoming the devil of Fu's grudge will do for you! His bitter resentment has always been strong, and you yourself planted the seeds of this grudge! (Martial Trial. DC 70. +10)
>>5560993
This being our first critfail after over a year of play means QM genuinely might not have had something in mind for when this happened.
>>
>>5560993
To me it looked like a decent extension of Huan's pride and its inherent weakness combined with the respective consequence of a repeated (and telegraphed) technique to someone who likely meditated on our battle after watching it. We've done other dumb catlike things without a roll, they're just in situations without much social or physical consequence. Huan going for consistency out of pride to cover for a mistake doesn't feel ooc at all. It should feel stupid, because that's a genuine limitation of impulsive pride in committed action.

I can think of some kinds of bad luck that would make us look smarter for our choice, though dcs got lowered and we got +20 because we shook the spiders' spirit, but not too much would come across as fair to our character.

It's also not even that bad. I suspect if our assassin here hadn't had his confidence bisected by weird techniques he'd have tried driving forward beneath our neck, since I'm fairly sure he almost tried that before. Which would've afforded us quite a bit more than a DC-raising slap to the noggin.
>>
>>5561233
>if our assassin here hadn't had his confidence bisected by weird techniques he'd have tried driving forward beneath our neck
I read his actions as basically sparing us, possibly out of pity for our stupidity.
>>
Counting a bit

>Votes - 10 (11?)
XoBIjUnC
nBVtJOwA
n07guUp7
HWtqfN5G
wb6qQp9Y
bbv1vAYC
oKzyjg0/
dxhQ6mr0
1u9x17S2 (?)
yPgfHj+G
aLZIAV+F

>Fu - 7
XoBIjUnC
nBVtJOwA
n07guUp7
HWtqfN5G
wb6qQp9Y
bbv1vAYC
oKzyjg0/

>Draw - 3 (4?)
dxhQ6mr0
1u9x17S2 (?)
yPgfHj+G
aLZIAV+F

>Deal - (1?)
1u9x17S2 (?)

>Speech - 1
aLZIAV+F

>Pay - 4
oKzyjg0/
HWtqfN5G
aLZIAV+F
yPgfHj+G (v32kvNXT) (bGhjT8pr)

Put a ? because this anon >>5560017 voted, but didn't greentext it

I got to confess, I hate combat, it takes forever. This fight has been going for 10 days and has been somewhat simple so far (except the crit fail on a easy DC part). It's why I voted to leave every time we had the chance. I was very surprised that the killing of Anjing's brute siblings was done so quickly. So personally I'm sad about this crit fail not because of failing, but because it's dragging this on even more
Although it is fitting for cultivator stories.
>>
>>5559977

Supporting paying for damages and any axes we might borrow.
>>
>>5561394
the ? vote is for draw and still going through the deal

Thought it will be from an inferior positin of bargaining. I'll also add paying the damages to my vote to get it to 5. Best that we be courtious.
>>
File: d5iqg0cgr3fa1.png (892 KB, 1620x1220)
892 KB
892 KB PNG
Ending the vote now, tallying the result.

Turn human, and grab the two axes and see what becoming the devil of Fu's grudge will do for you! His bitter resentment has always been strong, and you yourself planted the seeds of this grudge!:8

Pay for the damage :7


Shamelessly offer the draw, since both of you have made fools of yourselves and its pointless to lose more face fighting in your current state:4
-”My head is ringing and this cat is no longer willing to play with her food. But I’m aware enough to know you’d find being devoured by me an honor when it’s really a waste of a good demon. Accept a draw so I made free myself of this headache in peace and return to being pleasant with you.”:2
-"The well of my patience has dried up, accept that this is the depth of my techniques you will see today or the next you will witness will be your last.":2

So You'll turn human, grab two axes and use enmity incarnation to switch Monu's mask for Fu's to continue the fight, after paying for them and the damage to the building.

Update will arrive shortly


>>5560993
Yeah I could've handled it better admittedly. I accept the loss of face.

>>5561371
>>5561233

Do recall you both did agree to not kill each other
>>5561394
Thank you junior, and yeah, I know combat drags on, been trying to figure out how to fix that, thinking multiple updates per day would work. Though as you pointed out, it does fit for cultivation lol
>>
>>5561575
We seen some of these cliches, but they been changed quite a lot.
Still waiting for the old god to reveal his identity so we can confirm our suspicions.
>>
But that's fine. You've fought with far worse handicaps and against far more dangerous foes with greater at risk than just your reputation among the scum of the dead. Still, while you know you won't suffer any great loss by surrendering besides having to contend with hotshot devils who think you'll be an easy means to lift up their own reputation if you yet this spider get the better of you, your stubborn pride balks at the prospect. And so does most of the rest of you, even your ever cautious and reasonable sense of self preservation which has kept you out of trouble worse than your present circumstances. Though right now its whispered suggestions and mutterings aren't needed or wanted. You're angry. Pissed off at yourself for being so bullheaded and at your opponent, who you realize you don't even know the name of, for getting your fur all covered in dust and splinters. If he can still talk through the broken jaw you intend to give him as a bit of fair and deserved retribution for ringing your skull, you'll be sure to ask him for it.

But for now, its apparent you need to change your strategy. You don't know Monu to be an adept martial artist, or all that strong physicals, her strengths lie else where and are plenty enough, but after feeling just how much brutish strength that spider demon can muster, it might not be the best idea to approach this fight with the subtle killing arts and seductive trickery. And that blizzard you conjured should linger for awhile longer, even after you toss aside your mother's mask and stop acting like her. Though performing few more ice spells might be worthwhile, you don't exactly know what kind of ice magics Monu knows, since you've never seen her fight and while you may be a genius prodigy without peer presently or for ten generations back, innovation can only take you so far.

'What I need' you decide, 'are tried and tested techniques, not spells made up on the fly'. Once again the two axes hung up on the wall catch your eye, and you realize that while this assassin has studied your ghostly feline martial arts and has seen how a human girl would use them with a sword and a lethally quick draw, he hasn't ever seen how your first follower Fu fights. Two Axe Fu might be renowned amongst men, but do the denizens of hell know of him beyond the souls he has sent down here? That could work!

Smiling, you transform into your humanself with a shower of crimson sparks, the cloud of smoke and dust wrapping around you just densely enough to cover up your bare body. Though you notice the shopowner is respectful enough to turn away his eyes as you march up to the axes, grab them just beneath their heads and loosen your grip the moment you take them from their mounts.
Cont
>>
>>5561650

Letting their handles slip through your fingers, you catch them about half a hand's length from their end and test their weight by swinging them up, opening your hands and catching them in their middle to give them a circling swing at your sides, cutting two great gouges in the floor.

"H..hey! you can't take those without paying, lady! I know you're beautiful, but don't think cause I'm being a gentleman I can't see your intentions!" The forge demon bellows through the furnace like mask he wears, his steaming body turning red as you lift your head, thinking how Fu stands and walks, with a confident stride and swagger, long stomping steps and lifted chest. A Woodcutters walk, throwing around the weight of his shoulders as if always ready to hew through a log of wood or body of a villain. But his eyes, always narrow and annoyed, like he's suffering a constant headache. And he only really smiles while in your company or that of his friends or family. He can be a rather serious boy, which makes sense. He was nearly mauled to death.

Yet he can also be boisterous. Not as much as Hong or Lei, but he is of good humor and spirits, certainly less dour and gloomy than say, Qiang can be. Strong sense of justice, but not like Siwang. He's more focused on revenge, which is different from justice, very much so. And he is fierce in his pursuit for retribution, for any he knows to have been wronged. Almost as fiercely as he is loyal to those who have helped him, like yourself.

Reflecting deeper on your disciples personality, your mind turns to the grudge you instilled within him. He was an atheist when you found him, a true sceptic who only believed what his two eyes could see. But you taught him the gods were very much real, and could never to be trusted. And that was enough to make a grudge strong enough to replace the hole left behind by the one he held against the tiger that tried to eat him and his sister and killed his father. But...what exactly does he hate about them, besides their hypocrisy and unfairness

You swing the axes up as the dust begins to settle and a six armed shadow falls over your head. Closing your eyes, you ponder this, since you always took it for granted that Fu hated them for exactly the same reasons as you do, but now that you're trying to feel like him, to replace your heart with his own, you don't think that's the case.

Rather, you feel Fu despises them for not intervening, for allowing suffering to exist to begin with and because they leave allow tragic fates to befall even their most ardent of believers. That they let a tiger tear him apart and take his father from him, yet abhor a much more kindly and benevolent beast to the point of hunting her like some kind of vicious animal when she has done nothing deserving of such persecution!

And then it clicks into place, you roll your shoulders and bite your tongue to draw blood out of it.
Cont
>>
>>5561653

Slouching, you bow your head and allow your scarlet hair to fall over your eyes as you stand exactly like Fu does as your thoughts become painted with his bitter black disgust for the heavens and their apathy. It is a different kind of enmity than Xiongji's or Monu's. There's are two extremes, blazing hatred and cold spite. Fu's is...darkness. Heavy and weighty, but with not heat or cold to it, it is the sensation of watching a mugging, seeing a bruised teary eyed face, witnessing a man get stabbed for being heroic and brave. It is the shadow of sheer disgust that he must feel when he sees men acting like beasts and monsters, performing all manner of villainy and sin without suffering any comeuppance for their wrongdoings. It is like, rather than a belly of boiling oil or breath of freezing air, a cloak of vengeful spirits whispering and pleading for you to chop their killers into tiny little pieces, to seek out evil and sever it from this world, chop by hacking chop.

Fu's scarred, bandage wrapped mask falls over the face of Huanliuxue as you let out calm and collected sigh, letting your mouth full of blood drip down your chin, over your neck to cover your chest, where, as you walk to face your opponent, you take it and turn it into liquid bandages to wrap tightly around your uncovered form. The streamers of glistening wet blood bind themselves to you, and somehow you feel more naked being dressed by so many strips of tightly hugging "Cloth". Maybe its because how they make your flesh bulge from under its wrappings while beneath it it is constricted and compressed, both extenuating and hiding your bodies curves and features, leaving enough exposed for make a wandering mind drool. Which, now that you've noticed this, is especially noticeable around your thighs and chest. Shrugging, you wrap your face with the last of your blood bandages and end up with a rather strange and striking hair style, that makes it seem like you combed half of it up and shaved the other side of you skull bare. Certainly not the prettiest look, but, hey! Fu's never much cared for appearances even though he'd have a handsome face if he didn't have most of it clawed off!

"Are we done here?" The spider as woozily.

You answer with a whistle and a thrown axe, which you attached one of your bandages to, so you can pull yourself up to wherever it lands and gets stuck in. But before you do, you toss the shopkeeper a paper talisman, with a written promise to repay him for the axes and the damages to his shop. Then, crouching down and pulling, you fling yourself into the air, and spin around just to get a look at the face of your opponent as you rocket past him
Cont
>>
>>5561654

"Oh that isn't fair" He says, trying to keep from staring openly by covering his face, but he can't help but peek as you roll around, and stick the landing, retrieving your axe with a confident bounce in your shameless stride "This is why I don't fight pretty girls! You know how to use your natural weapons against men like me! Could you, for my sake, wear something with a bit more material than easily cut ribbons! I don't want to seem like a lecher!"

"Too bad! No reason to fight fair against a dog like you!" You snap back, grinning cockily as the spider pauses and adjust his stance

"You're acting entirely different again, holding yourself like you're an entirely different person" He says, drooling more than he did as he watched certain parts of you bounce with each step you took "What's up with that, huh"

"Did you give your victims any explanation?" You ask sharply, resting one axe on the ground to lean on, as you rest the other on your shoulder

"Fair point" He concedes, bowing as he steps back

"Then lets get started" You huff, raising up both your axes as you recall how Fu swings them around together. And you realize just how strong the boy is to be able to swing both of them in a steady rhythm, ONE HANDED! Truly, your students are nearly as amazing as their teacher!

Roll 1d100+10. DC 70. Best out of four
>>
Rolled 54 + 10 (1d100 + 10)

>>5561659
FU ATTACK
>>
Rolled 52 + 10 (1d100 + 10)

>>5561659
Will there be another 1?
>>
Rolled 99 + 10 (1d100 + 10)

>>5561659
>>
>>5561674
Best boy Fu.
>>
>>5561674
this is much more like it.
>>
Rolled 55 (1d100)

>>5561659
>>
>>5561674
What an auspicious success! And also an incredible one. 30 over and just one shy of 40 over! Truly, a Student and Teacher fighting as one is a force not even a hurricane could overcome.

Update will arrive shortly
>>
>>5561693
With two heavy axes, I’m certain we ARE said hurricane.
>>
The shadow you feel clinging onto your back, as if it has claws to dig into the bones of your shoulder feels as natural a part of you as the fingers holding onto the axes in your hands and the hair only head, or the legs beneath you walking in a steady, stalwart march towards a monster that'd make most hardened soldiers cower and cry out for their mothers. It must be because you've spent so much of your time in darkness only kept from being complete by the light cast by the spirits and ghosts long imprisoned within it. Its so familiar as to be comforting, like a mother's warmth or the chill of morning, as soothing as the aroma of grave dirt and stillness of forgotten graves. The grudge you wear now is very close to one of your own strongest, but different as well. More bitter tasting than it is sour, closer to smoldering embers than the ever fed fire you keep locked inside your belly, growing larger and more wild the more you learn of the past and just how truly repugnant the crimes the gods have committed are. A cloak of scorn rather than loathing, but just as pure and raw as that hate you feel for the heavens that turn their nose up at you.

Yet, while by taste and texture alone you can tell it is more similar than it is different from the grudge your hold against the gods, all gods except that old man who had no part in their betrayal and the atrocities that they continue to commit, you cannot shake the feeling it is different. Even if you can't quite place how exactly it is. But you don't yet this question slow you down, and keep a steady pace as you casually approach the spider demon, walking so briskly as if you were just in a market to buy fruit or walking down a river admiring the clouds. Your grin grows and grows as you willingly take in more of Fu's grudge, letting it seep into your and grow like roots worming through old bones, letting it contaminate every inch of your flesh with its magnificent darkness. A darkness so deep it must beautifully match the black dyeing a portion of your spiritual roots!

The spider is cautious again, studying your carefully as you, almost instinctively, begin circling eachother once more. He keeps himself lowered, despite his great bulk and you keep your head held high and chest puffed up, shoulders relaxed and hanging as you move without effort. Not like a cat would, gracefully and with a looseness to their movements, relaxed in everyway. But more like boulder rolling down a hill, moving with an ease that belies the destruction its capable of unleashing. There's a threat in your every step, which are more like stomps. Fu moves something like a pissed off ox, well aware of his size and strength, and using the way he moves to broadcast it to everyone around him. Great steps, with a sturdy and unyielding stance, walking with all the poise and stature of a stone giant. Which must seem somewhat ridiculous when you're immitating it, considering the differences between you and him.

Cont
>>
>>5561769

Your opponent, so focused on you, nearly slips and trips on a loose tile. And that momentary stumble is all the opening you need, drooping your axes to grip them by their bottoms, you drag them through the roof, lowering yourself in a charge. Leaping over the cat shaped hole in the roof, you throw your axes up, catching them about two hands below their heads, and swing them down one after the other. The first cleaves through tile and timber, splitting the roof nearly completely open and sending great cracks throughout the building. You hear the forge demon shriek like a kettle boiling water, as the spider looks back both with equal parts fear and admiration in his eight eyes. He brings two swords to block the second axe, and you break two blades, summoning up Fu's hard earned strength to break iron as if it were word

Their wielder only walks away unscathed because he leaned back, and so had his dented breastplate cut in half rather than having a wound hewn through his chitinous chest. Expecting banter and teasing he opens his mouth to speak, but you know Fu wouldn't hesitate to strike or play with his prey. He isn't a cat like you are, and isn't of a blithe spirit like your mother. He is an executioner.

So, instead of teasing the demon, you rise up with a swing, lunging forward with a scything strike that knocks off one of his shoulder guards as he hastily tries to block the blow. You nearly make a spider shaped hole in the next building over with him, but he manages to keep his feet to the ground and duck, trying to slink under your swing to stab your belly. You meet him with a jab, slamming the top of the other axe's head into his throat, and sending him hurtling back. He bounces once, rolls back to his feet and grabs his throat. Knowing now you aren't in a playful mood anymore, he leaps forward, spinning around four of his arms in an unnatural, painful looking fashion while keeping two of them lifted like fangs to pin you down so their siblings can tear through you at their leisure. You stomp one foot forward, lifting your axes high above your head and do not dodge or move to deflect his wild attack, instead favoring Fu's very hard style of fighting, summoning his ferocity to make your own.

Both of you step past the other, him plunging his blades down like biting fangs, while you swing your axes in a long crescent arc, only stopping because your arms cannot rotate completely around. Speaking of arms, two of his, with still holding their blades, fly off from him as he kneels and huffs as if it were just a slap to his face

Turning around, you throw your axes up, catching them beneath their heads so their blades just just below your fists. This is one of Fu's two axe styles strangest techniques, where he uses the hafts of his axes like sectioned staffs but the axes themselves like they were bladed brass knuckledusters!
Cont
>>
>>5561770

You aren't sure were he got the idea for this, but it seems like its effective from the few times you've seen him use it in practice. Your gentlemanly opponent, the oddly chivalrous and honorable assassin rises, turning and moving with an almost casual indifference to the danger, you, that he faces so readily.

And attacks, locking two of his swords in an axe patter, for defensive and stabbing with the remaining two through their gaps without rhyme or reason. This is probably to trick the foresight of skilled swordsmen, to baffle their fighting instinct.

You just ignore it by sticking the axe heads between his crossed swords and using the leverage you now have over him to push him back and over, and its as you try to push him through the hole in the roof and block his counterattack with the hafts of the axes holding him down, that you realize why Fu's grudge feels so different than others.

It isn't his own, not really. The spite he feels, the enmity and resentment, he feels out of sympathy for others, aligning his heart with the grudges with their own. The method of grudge cultivation he found. He welcomes the vengeful ghosts of the dead on his own back, inviting them to haunt him so he may avenge them by hunting down and butchering their killers. Embodying their dying curses, taking their place as a symbolic revenant to met out vengeance on their behalf. A different sort of technique from your grudge devouring. A symbiosis of spite. A purposeful possession. So that is how Fu gets power from grudges! Rather than eating them, he chains them to his back! Becoming a walking repository of curses! A true heretics technique! You couldn't be prouder of him!

Black, spectral hands emerge from behind you, holding down the spider assassin as you push against him harder, the edge of the axe biting into the "shoulders" of his lower set of arms. He blinks, trying to throw you off and looking horrified as more and more hands emerge from your shadows to help in holding him down.


"I...I surrender. Call of the phantoms of your back, and I'll admit defeat" He says meekly, looking at something truly terrifying that must be peeking over your back

"Only if you promise to look after your sister Anjing, like a brother should, and tell me of any spiders or demons you think I'd enjoy the company of. The worthwhile sort, like you and her" You say cheerfully, grinning as you breath a grudge onto his face for no real reason besides thinking it'd be funny "And be my sparring partner in the future. Ghosts might not die, but they have less presence than a demon who can. Promise I'll be gentle"

"Yes! Yes, anything! Just...I recognize those faces" He says, smiling as his monstrous body shrinks back down to his human like form, which is bloodied, bruised and battered all over, but missing no limbs "and I've lost enough arms already to not feel confident that I could take my past marks in a fight, especially with the great crowkiller commanding them!"
Cont
>>
>>5561771

"You are remarkably unbothered about being disarmed, what? four times?" You say, standing up and unwrapping the bandages around your hair, letting it fall its natural way, dripping blood as you allow Fu's mask to fall away

"They grow back?" He says, shrugging

"They do!?" You gasp as Yujijiao slithers up the roof, your newest robes on top her head, looking fretful as she hands them to you so you can cloth yourself and stop walking around covered only by a few splotches of blood stretched out and thickened to look like ribbons. The spider sighs in relief as you dress yourself, doing so more for Yujijiao's sake than for anything else. After all, the spider at your feet has proven to be quite the courteous sort!

"You really are shameless sometimes, Teacher" The serpent ghost sighs as you secure your robes

What do you do now, Huanliuxue?

>ask the spider his name before you leave, and help him up to show there's no ill will between the two of you

>Leave your bested opponent on the ground, deciding to tease him one last time before you leave hell before anyone else can leap out and challenge you to a fight

>Take his broken blades and severed limbs as trophies/ materials.

>Demands to see his mother, so you can tell her to never try to kill you again and to treat her children better...even though you killed a few of them!

>Write in
>>
>>5561773
>ask the spider his name before you leave, and help him up to show there's no ill will between the two of you
>"If they grow back, then you wouldn't mind if I took them, would you?" Take the severed limbs, but leave the blades
>Fulfill the payment promise to the furnace demon.
>>
>>5561773
>>ask the spider his name before you leave, and help him up to show there's no ill will between the two of you
>Leave hell.

I want to leave the Spidermother around as an antagonist, she'll be annoying and a problem later, but it should be better to let Grandfather set up and foreshadow conflict with her, rather than executing her plot thread immediately
>>
>>5561773
>ask the spider his name before you leave, and help him up to show there's no ill will between the two of you

>Invite him to come and visit your sect, if he is so lucky to ever find himself in the mortal world. You have a disciple who might enjoy learning some of his assasination techniques, if he is feeling generous from being spared by us.
>>
>>5561773
>>5561783
Supporting.
>>
>>5561773
>>5561791
>>5561792
Supporting the write-in here as well.
>>
>>5561791
I support this too.
>>
>>5561773
>>5561783
>>5561791
Pluuus 1!
>>
>>5561783
I like this plan.
Solves this outing nicely so we can move on to hearing what our disciples did in the swamp.
>>
>>5561783
>>5561791
I'll support these write ins. And then we can go and get our stuff done with our students.
>>
>>5561773
>>5561783 +1
>>
>>5561773
Supporting >>5561783
>>
>>5561783
Even though everyone seems to be agreeing with me, I feel like explaining my reasoning for leaving the blades but getting the limbs, to get some discussion.
My main reasons are that he could have them repaired, and keeping a trophy from a friendly bout seems weird to me.
Also, I don't remember us getting we haven't kept trophies from our most difficult or emotional fights, it being Baoli and the Ling, only really emperor and the ghost lord souls, if we can even count those as trophies. However, we do collect materials and reagents, even from defeated enemies, like the beast cores and Baoli's corpse.
This reason is weaker, because while it appeals to Huans past actions, we could always just choose to start collecting trophies anytime we want, since it's not something that would drastically change her character out of nowhere.
>>
>>5562109
I follow this line of reasoning, that cat like lady is all about getting what is useful.

The sword's aren't useful to us, except for their construction which isn't unique to assassin here, while his arms [and their attatched silk gear] can be used by our genius mother to refine into other crap.

Though honestly speaking with you, I'm excited to see what Baoli's corpse will yield to us. Spider's silk and arms? probably something protective. But the crow demon?!
Gotta be something of at least golden core/nascent soul quality. I think gold core, since Monu said she would have an issue with him and we were foundation establishment when we fought him.
>>
>>5561773
>>5562109
Aaaactually, I can think of a change to your write-in for the blades. Hear me out.
>Take his arms and one blade with us. The arms will be reagents, the blade will be for Feiqing to study.

I was fully on board your line of thinking when I first voted. The blades are unnecessary so I don’t care, but reagents are never bad to turn down since Monu will use them eventually if we don’t. Especially when it’s free like this!

But the blades are finely crafted and of hell make I’m sure. Taking one for our own student to study would be sensible as he’s unlikely to see hell-forged blades often. He can’t pop in and out of hell like we can.

If we want, we can promise to wield Feiqing’s answer to the spider’s blades next time we fight. If he likes it, he may always attempt to arrange a purchase from our fine smith through us.

Perhaps as a source of souls and income we can have Yujijao and Feiqing ply his blacksmithing trade here occasionally.
>>
>>5562138
Hmmmm, Feiqing's dao is the ancient furnace deity, and hell's weapons are made by furnace demons. He might learn something interesting or useful studying them.
There's also the two axes we just bought. We could give it to Feiqing to study, gift it to Fu, or keep them to channel him later. We could always ask Feiqing to forge a new pair if we get rid of them.
Feiqing might be busy with whatever is on that smithing book we got from the spooky library, or forging the throne if we decide to ask him that, but he could always prioritize.
Didn't we ask for Anjing for some of her silk? Feiqing could use them to make a new pair of spider assassin blades. I bet Qiang could make use of them.
>>
>>5562158
>>5562158
We have Anjing's silk and venom.

I think we'll have to prioritise ourselves with what we want from Feiquing. He can't just walk into hell as he wishes, so we'd need to make prep.

Anyway, desires things is
Grudge axes for Fu, using our chaos blood orb
Cultivation throne for us, using our star jade.

We could also see if he is able to find any way to awaken the secret power of the forge-masters bangle, which we've never really needed to bother with. But will probably be helpful for.

>Bangle of the Great Forge Devil, One of the favored servants of the Demon Lord Zhìzūn-Móxīn (至尊-魔心, Supreme Devil Mind), A Supreme token of Fire Resistance.
A bangle of Enchanted Copper and Demonic Iron, hammered together to form a solid ring in the vague shape of bat wings. Blood Red and Pitch black, in glows with an inner light that casts the space around it in a deep, dark crimson shadow. Hanging from it, from a length of chain connected by what seems a rope spun from fiery red hair that almost seems to be actually aflame, sits a black knuckle bone and a curious carving of jade, the waxy colors of it mingled between brown, black and red, to form a swirl of color that has been carven into a pendant shaped like a fearsome, horned devil surrounded by flame.
Possesses magic that will allow its wearer to resist heat that could melt metal, and work a lit forge as if it there wasn't any heat at all.
Appears surrounded primarily by Fire Qi, but holds Metal Qi within.
Noted to clearly be hiding a deeper power or more complicated ability behind the appearance of "merely" fire resistance

for help and reference.
Once he's finished with our throne, which I believe we should prioritise, we can give him the magic sword manuel as a reward. Or maybe restrict it for until he reaches foundation establishment?
>>
>>5562138
Don't forget that we also have two shiny new axes, bought and paid for. These should naturally go to Fu, being demon forged they are certainly better that whatever he's currently using. But maybe before we give them to Fu we can have Feiqing have a look at further upgrades, maybe involving the blood mist pearl as we have planned for so long.
>>
>>5561773
>>5561783
Supporting this. I just hope that the hole in the roof won’t be too expensive. <.<
>>
>>5562838
We managed to buy out the entire stock of a moth merchant using only a small fraction of souls. We are apparently disgustingly wealthy right now.
>>
>>5562840
As it turns out, much easier to get souls from the realm of the living.
>>
>>5562849
I think most of them were part of Baoli's hoard.
Although it could have been from those ghost that refused to surrender. They are the only ones we trapped so far, other then the emperor
>>
>>5562856
I was sure we got the majority from aluminum claw. Though I may be mistaken.
>>
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Ending the vote, tallying the result now.

ask the spider his name before you leave, and help him up to show there's no ill will between the two of you:10

"If they grow back, then you wouldn't mind if I took them, would you?" Take the severed limbs, but leave the blades:7
-Take his arms and one blade with us:1

Fulfill the payment promise to the furnace demon.:8

Invite him to come and visit your sect, if he is so lucky to ever find himself in the mortal world. You have a disciple who might enjoy learning some of his assasination techniques, if he is feeling generous from being spared by us.:5

So you'll ask the spider his name, ask to take his severed arms, and pay the furnace demon for the damages your brawl caused before returning to your sect.

Update will arrive shortly
>>
As you tighten the belt to make sure your don't suffering any embarrassing slips, you flash the bruised demon on his back in front of you a friendly smile, intrigued eyes focused on his now singular set of eyes as he looks up at you, not at all concerned with his defeat or maiming. And while your smile is kind and your expression curious, you're really at your wits end not knowing what to call the polite and gallant killer, who has a sense to show proper respect that's rare amongst even the living be they beasts or be they men let alone the natural residents of the yellow springs.

"But, ignoring your prodigious regenerative capabilities, I have to ask you assassin, what are you called? Its getting awkward not knowing the name of you, and makes me feel ruder than I am because I don't know what to call you despite my growing fondness of your honorable manner and keen eyes and intuition of whom to respect and admire, Heh-Heh-Heh"

He hops to his feet, sheathes his remaining swords, swings his arm across his chest in a practiced and greatly theatric manner before stepping back with a deep, cordial bow.

"I am one of the favored sons of the spider demon clan, one of its eight fangs" He declares with all the etiquette of a well reared and trained courtier "Heizhizhu (黑蜘蛛, Dark Spider) Bāmóushā (八谋杀 , Eight Murders), Elder brother of the youngster who calls herself Anjing-Yinshi (安靜-隐士, Quiet Hermit), though I am a century her elder"

"What a macabre name, but a fitting one. I like it!" You declare was you secure your belt and put your hands on your hip, grinning so brightly it threatens to blind both Bamousha and Yujijiao "Now that we're introduced, since you already know I am Huanliuxue, back to the matter of your severed limbs"

"Grisly, but expected of the mistress of corpses" He says, flashing a smile that reveals his polished white fangs "What of them, I doubt you'll find you have a taste for demon flesh, considering the purity of your, admittedly, blood stained heart"

"Do I look desperate for a meal? of course not" You huff, lifting your arms to cross them and pout angrily "I was just wondering if they grow back, then you wouldn't mind if I took them, would you?"

"Why would I? there's like discarded shells, not worth my time" He says with a frown "I'm sure you'll find a better use for them, perhaps in a poison or some sort of weapon, I wouldn't know, my education is lacking in subjects beyond the art of killing...and poetry"

"Really?" Yujijiao asked in disbelief

"I have to have something I can be proud about that I can openly brag and boast about" He offered with a shrug "It's consider the mark of a poor assassin if we go around talking about what we accomplish, very poor form you seen, a grave breech in ettiqutte"

"But you yearn for recognition" your disciple asked mockingly
Cont
>>
>>5563032

"Beyond whispers and hushed tales" He says with a wink as he turns away and begins to hobble away "Which will certainly sting with as much mirth as you speak down to me with, serpent, considering I failed my duty. Luckily, my clans knows my worth, so I shall not be executed for it"

The more you hear about demon spider society, the more you want to tear it down or least keep far, far away from it. Shrugging and turning your back to the assassin, you set about gathering the arms and storing them in your dimensional gourd, as the crowd, disappointed no one died, disperses with bitter mutterings and a few shouts of being ripped off or conned which you ignore since it isn't like they paid for a show or anything.

The forge demon whose shop your fight wrecked, is remarkably polite and doesn't try to swindle you, perhaps because you're still holding two heavy axes and have blood smeared on your faces and hands still. And to your surprise, he asks for spirit stones rather than souls

"Why?" You ask what you're thinking

"I have contacts above, easier to find good timber in the mortal realm" He huffs, smoke curling around him "Just need raw materials, prefer to work for my own hands. And I'm giving a generous discount to you, who used my weapons to beat a spider demon assassin, that's a fantastic advertisement for my craftsman ship, don't you think"

You have to admit, it is. So with a smile, you give him what he asks for to fix the mess you made.

24 spirit stones lost. Total remaining 4244. Black-Bile-Iron Axes purchased (Demon forge axes made out of an iron pulled from a forge demon's belly, known for their durability and the burning pain inflicted by cuts made with it, caused by the gastric juices worked into the metal by the forge demon's stomach. Weapons made with them are tougher to break and corrosive

And all your business done, and a date set for you to return to collect the rest of your commission from sweet Anjing, you leave hell with Yujijiao before you can find any more trouble. And return to your ghostly court to find a few remarkable bold specters ready to petition you, furious and outraged over something. At first you think its Xiongji, but as you listen to the slavering, half rabid complaints of twelve or so hungry ghosts and struggle to understand what they're actually talking about through their gnashing teeth you eventually realize that its your sect that's gotten them so angry. Though you only figure that out with the help of one of your court officials, a record keeper you think, who translates their howling and slobbering shouting in a way you'll understand.

Seems Monu saw fit to throw one hell of a party for your returning disciples, to celebrate the success of their mission. And now that you're walking closer to the surface, you can understand while your deceased and accursed subjects are so furious.
Cont
>>
>>5563033

The festivities are so loud and wild, they're shaking the catacombs themselves, and the lights and music are actually slipping through the Demon Head Gate sealing the dead inside the crypt, which is really upsetting to the ones trapped inside it and disturbing the schedules they've made for themselves out of the madness and strange habits all but branded into their heads from their long imprisonment under the mountain.

Yujijiao seems very excited to join the party herself, though she at least acts like she shares the rest of the ghosts irritation at the ruckus.

What do you do, Huanliuxue? two actions can be taken

>Join the party and commended Siwang and Fu for their success in the sects first mission, before asking what happened during it and what was eating people in the dusk marshes

>Stop the party early, so your ghostly subjects don't descend further into madness from all the noise, and tell your sect of your adventures in hell with Yujijiao

>Figure out what to do with the axes you bought, the Bamousha's discarded arms and maybe some of the other treasures and materials lying around your sect

>See if Ping is recovered yet, and give Feiqing the Last Will of a Heaven's defying Smith to study

>Apologize for not being there to welcome your triumphant disciples when they arrived, and reward all of them

>Ignore all that, and meet the new magical beasts that your students rescued, who are currently being watched by a sulking Qiang, and Yinying, Zhurou and Houmougui, while Frog, Chuandapo and Huili are celebrating with the rest of the sect. Also call frog over to name him

>Write in
>>
>>5563035
Why don't we have the dead throw a festival just as grand as the celebration above? I'm sure we can procure whatever they need to have a truly macabre dance. Then again, they just want to sleep so they're likely not game for that.

>Apologize for not being there to welcome your triumphant disciples when they arrived, and reward all of them
>but ask them to dial back the celebration just a tad. Partying hard enough to wake the dead is quite the feat, but in rather poor taste when they are your neighbors.
>>
>>5563035
>Apologise for not being there to welcome them, but get them to dial down on the party and then reward them.
>Figure out what to do with the axes and our treasures

FINALLY. LETS GET THAT THRONE BUILT!
>>5563065
and I don't think instructing them to quiet down will take a full action. though if I'm wrong, I remove it from my first vote. It's ultimately not that important.
>>
>>5563035

>Join the party and commended Siwang and Fu for their success in the sects first mission, before asking what happened during it and what was eating people in the dusk marshes

>Figure out what to do with the axes you bought, the Bamousha's discarded arms and maybe some of the other treasures and materials lying around your sect

I'm back from hell and I brought presents!

And maybe if Grandfather will let me sneak it in...
> Take a moment to weave our shadow into a veil to block out the light and sound of the party from the restless dead.
>>
>>5563035
>Apologize for not being there to welcome your triumphant disciples when they arrived, and reward all of them
>Join the party and commended Siwang and Fu for their success in the sects first mission, before asking what happened during it and what was eating people in the dusk marshes
>>
>>5563102
+1
>>
Okay, listen to this, guys:
With blood refinement, we can fix Fu's scars.
It can't be harder than removing Yuyi's tail.
Restore the looks he ought to have and make Lanfen die of nasal exsanguination.
>>
>>5563243
I don't know if fu would want that, better ask first since he has history with his scars.
Besides why stop there when we can fix lanfen herself with a little touch up there and asset enhancing here, so she's less self conscious of other jade beauties.
>>
>>5563035
>Apologize for not being there to welcome your triumphant disciples when they arrived, and reward all of them
>but ask them to dial back the celebration just a tad. Partying hard enough to wake the dead is quite the feat, but in rather poor taste when they are your neighbors.

>Figure out what to do with the axes you bought, the Bamousha's discarded arms and maybe some of the other treasures and materials lying around your sect

Shit, I want to do everything
>>
>>5563243
He doesn't want to heal them. He's content to be vengeful spectre covered in bangages.

But we can of course offer, I just don't think he cares about fixing them due to sentimental value and a reminder of his first Grudge, which is essential to his Dao.

>>5563252
I'm also leery of improving her looks. It can serve as important motivation on the path of immortality, if beauty is what she desires.
>>
>>5563035
>Join the party and commended Siwang and Fu for their success in the sects first mission, before asking what happened during it and what was eating people in the dusk marshes

>See if Ping is recovered yet, and give Feiqing the Last Will of a Heaven's defying Smith to study
>>
>>5563035
>Apologize for not being there to welcome your triumphant disciples when they arrived, and reward all of them
>Figure out what to do with the axes you bought, the Bamousha's discarded arms and maybe some of the other treasures and materials lying around your sect
>>
>>5563035
>Apologize for not being there to welcome your triumphant disciples when they arrived, and reward all of them
>but ask them to dial back the celebration just a tad. Partying hard enough to wake the dead is quite the feat, but in rather poor taste when they are your neighbors.
>>
>>5563035
>Ignore all that, and meet the new magical beasts that your students rescued, who are currently being watched by a sulking Qiang, and Yinying, Zhurou and Houmougui, while Frog, Chuandapo and Huili are celebrating with the rest of the sect. Also call frog over to name him.
Aww, our daughter is pouting because she didn’t get to join the adventure or the party! We can bring it to her instead. Kind of.

We should get that beastmen village started so we can have parties in the open.

>Figure out what to do with the axes you bought, the Bamousha's discarded arms and maybe some of the other treasures and materials lying around your sect
We can do this while we leave the others to party hard, maybe spend some time with the new disciples.

I really like the “Don’t wake the dead as a challenge” write-in though.
>>
>>5563035
>Apologize for not being there to welcome your triumphant disciples when they arrived, and reward all of them
>but ask them to dial back the celebration just a tad. Partying hard enough to wake the dead is quite the feat, but in rather poor taste when they are your neighbors.
>Name Frog, he's been nameless for too long
Didn't comment on it at the time due a misclick getting me slapped by a mod but Fu's mask's back ghosts could in theory combo really well with the reopening of old wounds spell if/when we get it. Bamousha's fight was pretty educational for Enmity Incarnation all around.
>>
>>5563307
Changing my vote to
>Apologize for not being there to welcome your triumphant disciples when they arrived, and reward all of them
>but ask them to dial back the celebration just a tad. Partying hard enough to wake the dead is quite the feat, but in rather poor taste when they are your neighbors.
>Ignore all that, and meet the new magical beasts that your students rescued, who are currently being watched by a sulking Qiang, and Yinying, Zhurou and Houmougui, while Frog, Chuandapo and Huili are celebrating with the rest of the sect. Also call frog over to name him
I want to mix these options as joining the party, asking for it to be toned down, meeting the new arrivals, rewarding our disciples, and meeting the new arivals all at once
Also name Froggert.

And I'm counting while at it

Votes
XoBIjUnC - 10
1u9x17S2
ZT4Lal/5
n07guUp7
pYIy8ll8
dmYi3mNo
wb6qQp9Y
HWtqfN5G
iFcqTluX
7UgGYwfH

>Apologize - 7
XoBIjUnC
1u9x17S2
n07guUp7
dmYi3mNo
HWtqfN5G
iFcqTluX
aLZIAV+F

>Dial down - 4 (5?)
XoBIjUnC
dmYi3mNo
iFcqTluX
7UgGYwfH
aLZIAV+F (?)

>Treasure - 6
1u9x17S2
ZT4Lal/5
dmYi3mNo
wb6qQp9Y
HWtqfN5G
aLZIAV+F

>Join - 4
ZT4Lal/5
n07guUp7
pYIy8ll8
wb6qQp9Y

>Shadow - 2
ZT4Lal/5
pYIy8ll8

>Ignore - 2
aLZIAV+F
dmYi3mNo

>Name Frog - 1
7UgGYwfH

The ? Is because anon said he liked the write-in, but didn't vote for it
There are two different write-ins on how to make the party more silent, but I didn't mix them, and one write-in that is part of a vote, I'm interpreting as anon only wanting to do that part.
>>
>>5564743
It feels a little weird for me to vote the write-in when I’m not voting to pop in at all, y’know? That said, if we do pop in the party then I’d vote the write-in over “pump up the party” and “SHUT. DOWN. EVERYTHING.”
>>
Ending the vote, tallying the result now.

Apologize for not being there to welcome your triumphant disciples when they arrived, and reward all of them:7

but ask them to dial back the celebration just a tad. Partying hard enough to wake the dead is quite the feat, but in rather poor taste when they are your neighbors.:5

Figure out what to do with the axes you bought, the Bamousha's discarded arms and maybe some of the other treasures and materials lying around your sect:6

Take a moment to weave our shadow into a veil to block out the light and sound of the party from the restless dead.:2

Join the party and commended Siwang and Fu for their success in the sects first mission, before asking what happened during it and what was eating people in the dusk marshes:4

See if Ping is recovered yet, and give Feiqing the Last Will of a Heaven's defying Smith to study:1

Ignore all that, and meet the new magical beasts that your students rescued, who are currently being watched by a sulking Qiang, and Yinying, Zhurou and Houmougui, while Frog, Chuandapo and Huili are celebrating with the rest of the sect:2


Call frog over to name him.:3

So you'll apologize for not greeting your disciples at the sect gate when they returned victoriously and present all of them with rewards, before finding some place relatively quite to figure out what to do with the axes you bought, the spider demons limbs and some of the other invaluable treasures and materials you've been hoarding.

Update will arrive shortly


>>5564743
Thank you junior!
>>
So You'll give her leave to join the fun, even if only a scant few of your sect's membership can interact with her let alone see her, but it'll at least make her feel welcome and if all goes well give her an experience that she was denied by having her life cut down so tragically short and that would of course being partying and playing around with her peers and friends. A rare comodity indeed for magical beasts, of whom it'd seem that a number of which have had to good fortune of being found by Siwang's party and have been brought into the safety and comfort of your underground retreat. Though they still seem skittish and on edge, probably because of the sudden change of their surroundings, you hope that is why they look so on edge and not some tragedy they suffered in their old homes. For, surely, whatever your students found that was eating entire villages in the swamps wasn't restricting its diet to humans.

So you'll leave the newest members of the palace of natural laws' sect alone for now, a giant cat would probably only scare them if one were to approach them before they've settled and gotten accustomed to their new home. And so would the woman you are now, less so, but still you are well aware how unnerving your "graveyard" Aura can be when you reveal it and you fear in your excitement, it might go wild and give those youngsters the fright of their lives.

Giggling at the thought, you hide your mouth behind the sleeves of your new robe and try to sneak into the party being thrown in the main hall of your temple. Someone has dragged the tables and chairs from the dining room out here and there's casks of wine rolled out, probably bought from Fu's village and musicians, some of whom you remember from the staff of Yuyi's maids and the soldiers who turned their coat over to yours when you left the last imperial capital of men, and you think you recognize a few more of them as Fu's friends who were blessed at birth with the innate talent to cultivate, the rest you're fairly certain are strangers to you and you just haven't forgotten or never cared to learn their faces or names. Except for Lei, who is playing in a very exhausting and wild way, dancing around like a man driven man as he plays his lute in an unpleasant and tone deaf way, far too fast and out of rhythm with all the other musicians who are earnestly trying to play music that is enjoyable and nice to listen to.

Still, at least Lei is being enthusiastic, so you give him a friendly wave as you stalk closer to the center of the party, where Fu and Siwang are standing high atop a table, Fu wearing his robes loosely and having let his bandages come undone and begin to slip from his face and shoulders. His cherry red cheeks tells you the boy has gotten himself drunk, and impressive feat considering his physique and harsh training regimen.
Cont
>>
>>5565458

Siwang, thankfully, is not intoxicated, but is acting like a drunkard with how energetically he joins Fu in his boastful recounting of their adventure in the swamps, as he stands atop a queer ball. A sort of tangle of red thorned vines that writhe and twitch and just from looking at it you can sense the curious object is rich with Qi, densely packed and refined. Almost like a beast core but a plant. How strange.

Using your natural feline sneakiness you come closer and closer as Fu tells his martial brothers and sisters the tale of their own accomplishments, while Monu listens intently with the smile of an adoring grandmother. And now you can understand why Qiang is gloomy, or gloomier than usual at least. It seems they had quite the fun adventure, even if Lanfen, Liu and Hong are still wearing the bruises and cuts they earned from it they are still smiling and overflowing with pride over hearing their two leaders tell the story they themselves wrote with their martial arts and daring.

You also notice Ping, Feiqing and Qinxin sitting down, chatting amongst themselves amicably, but closer to Lei and the musicians and judging from the fact that, between their cups of wine and plates of steaming dumplings, there are instruments laid out, the three of them have been taking turns ruining the parties nice music. Maybe you should join in on the fun later and shame them all with your talent in play Ghost Empress Melody? Well there's things that need doing before you can give into any flight of whimsy.

"My dear disciples!" You shout, alerting them to your presence as you stand behind Monu and receive a swift but soft chop to the head for yelling directly in her ear while she was entranced by Fu's storytelling. You flash your mother a mischievous grin as she pouts and holds her hands over her ears

Flicking your wrist and the sleeve of the lovely spider woven robe you're wearing, your students turn to look at you. Hong looking in the wrong direction and Lanfen spilling wine over her robes, seems she's still on edge after their experiences in the swamp and is a little jumpier than the rest. Fu cups his fist, grinning ear to ear, not caring at all his scars are exposed for all the world to see, while Siwang salutes and goes deathly silent, looking a little embarrassed you caught him acting a little foolish with Fu. You also see then, that Chuandapo is lazing on the table, next to Huili and Frog, who you really need to figure out a name for or gently push to find one himself cause it feels really mean to keep calling him frog when all of his fellows have good, proper names!

"Forgive your witless airhead of a teacher" You say jokingly, slapping your forehead "For under estimating the time she'd spend going shopping in hell and getting carried away with some"
Cont
>>
>>5565459

You pause as you think how to word exactly all that happened down there in hell, including that experience you had with that strange, vanishing store that seemingly hid a secret realm within it. Repressing a shiver, and with a beaming grin you continue were you left of, having figured out what to say next.

"...business down there in the yellow springs! I have meant to meet you when you arrived, to hear of your triumph first hand, but alas, my idiot self discovered the joy of spending cash and went a little wild down in the underworld and ran afoul of some trouble out of the goodness of my own heart. Funny how that can happen, and how easily some can take offense to a little charity work, Heh-Heh-Heh"

Yujijiao rolls her spectral eyes

"Oh no reason to be so self deprecating, my dear" Monu says, pinching and pulling on your ear "That you realized your mistake and apologized at all makes you the better of ninety percent of the sect heads in the world! I'll have to hear what exactly you got up to, since it seems you had quite the adventure if you came back dressed in such fine clothing!"

"Of course! Of course! When I have a free morning I'll excite you with mine and Yujijiao's trek to the land of the dead" You say cheerfully as Monu grins and sits back down, leaving your ear red and aching "But, before I do that, and before I can hear you me what you encountered in the dusk marshes and of your, clearly victorious battle against it, I've brought some gifts for you all! Rewards for a job well done, and for returning home safetly from such a treacherous mission"

"Yo..you don't have to be so generous, Lady Huanliuxue" Hong says, wiping his mouth clean with his sleeve

"Oh you're too kind master" Fu giggles, swaying back and forth "But why can't you listen now! Me and Siwang were about to get to the part of the man eating plant! You know, the one that wrapped Lanfen all up in its vines, like that Dusk Marsh cultivator we saved"

"Do..don't tell our teacher about that!" Lanfen squeaks, clearly ashamed "It was embarrassing enough my robes and shirt got torn, but for a stranger to see me in such a pitiful state! And Fu as well"

"Yes, yes, this is the fourth retelling brother Fu!" Liu chuckled as he poured Lanfen another glass of wine to drown her sorrows and shame as all the other's laugh loudly, even Huili joins in, and you do after a moment of hesitation "And I do not believe in the prior three, you and brother Siwang were so dramatic in your entrance from the treetops, or that he seemed like a phoenix spreading his wings rather than a mud drenched and confused pigeon you were hanging onto for dear life!"

"I couldn't tell you, I didn't see it" Hong hollered, spraying half chewed through in the air and onto the table

Siwang has reached Qi Condensation Rank 6, Fu has Reached Qi Condensation rank 7, Lanfen has reached Qi Condensation Rank 5, Liu has reached Qi condensation rank 4, Hong has reached Qi Condensation Rank 5

cont
>>
>>5565460

"I'm certain I'd rather hear it when you've sobered up and won't tell such a tall tale" You say with a wink, putting your hands on your hips "Besides, I have every right to be as generous and beneficent of teacher as I choose to be, dammit! And considering how happy I am that none of you died, I'm going to be very generous with my rewards of both praise and material wealth"

"I could tell you the story, though, I fled when the Cultivator we found half drained of his Qi and Juices woke up, so brother Fu would still have to describe to you what exactly happened when he was allowed into their pavilion" Siwang says, throwing out one of his wings

"Siwang tells it better" Hong chuckles "Fu is many things, but a cunning linguist he is not"

Lanfen smacked him for some reason and Liu nearly choked on his wine, while Monu laughed even louder than before, finding that funny somehow, while poor drunk Fu seemed as Confused as you were. But you have a feeling you'll feel rather foolish if you ask for an explanation, so instead, you move across the table, presenting each of your students their gifts.

"For you, Fu! I decided since you're always getting cut up, some proper armor would do you good. I've commissioned some made out of Spider Demon Silk, to go along with the set I'm having fashioned for myself and the outfit the lovely artisan is making for you! Since all of you deserve good clothes befitting the students of royalty, that extends to all of you as well!" You yell joyfully, smacking the boy on his back as you step up onto the table so you can be heard "Quality and luxurious fabrics, you deserve fine robes and dress for how diligently you've been working!"

"I am indebted to you once again, Lady Huanliuxue" He chuckles bashfully, leaning against you as he is overcome by the liquor he's imbibed

"For Siwang" You say, moving on after the cheers of adoration, even from those outer disciples who you really don't know all to well or at all quiet down, and the girls of your sect stop praising the robes you're wearing "A satchel, so he can carry important things around without having to carry them in his talents, I'll see about making it a dimensional storage treasure, but for now, it'll at least let you carry poisons and other useful things"

"I would never use poison" he says proudly "But, I to, am humbled by this gift, teacher"

"For Hong, I'll be honest Hong, I don't know you all to well, So I just got you a hammer to replace that pitted and dented monk spade you've been swinging around" You admit, shrugging as the blind man claps his hands like an excited little girl

"Oh just what I wanted, Master. My spade broke on the roots of the monster we fought!" He shouts, cupping his fists and all but kowtowing out of sheer gratitude and delight

"Lanfen, I got you some make up that's higher quality than the stuff the imperial consorts smear on their faces " You say briefly, before turning to Liu
Cont
>>
>>5565461

"Wait, what kind of make up?" She asks wearily "You got that from hell, didn't you. It isn't made of human fat, or blood, or ground up bones or"

"it isn't made of human fat" You say with a teasing smile "And I doubt they used blood or bones, though I'd stop asking about what's in it if I were you, considering you do not share my love for the grim, grisly and macabre, Heh-Heh-Heh"

She pouts but thanks you nonetheless.

"And Liu, knowing your fierce loyalty to Lanfen and your family's tradition of serving hers I" You begin but he raises a hand

"You got me a dog collar?" He asks, somehow knowing what you'd got for him, can he read minds?

"Yes?" You say, asking if he can read your mind in your thoughts while reading his expression for any subtle tell that he can

"Is it at least a magic dog collar?" He ask tiredly

"Of course, it'll let you keep in touch with any one holding the twin of the amulet tied to it" You say with a frown, deciding that he can't read your mind and just got lucky "By broadcasting voices between them. Very useful, but I was only able to find one. Otherwise I'd have bought more"

"Is it because you asked half of it to be put into a dog collar" He asks as Hong, Monu and Fu struggled not to burst out laughing

You do not answer him since that is exactly why you were only able to bring one of set of those magical tools here as a gift, since they'd be very useful. Useful and damn expensive!. So much so that you only got that one set and the other gifts besides Fu's armor by learning some of demons were indebted to you after leaving Anjing's house and before her brother challenged you to a fight in the middle of the street, and debts they got from their gambling in the crow king's tower and that you used to get the various gifts you've just given to your triumphant disciples.

What do you decided to do with your treasures/ Materials. Huanliuxue Each crafting choice will eat up Feiqing's time

>Give the Black Bile Iron axes to Fu when he sobers up, and here exactly what he found, what that ball of vines are, and why he has a token to enter a martial tournament.

>Have Monu grind up Bamousha's arms into a poison or elixir and help her do so(Alchemy trial. DC 80. Failure still produces a poison or potion, success just makes it higher quality/ quantity )

>Have Feiqing use Blood rain, chaos mist pearl and the BBI Axes to make Fu a mightier weapon [crafting]

>Finally get that Slab of Star jade carved into a proper throne [crafting]

> Write in [https://pastebin.com/x5rCdZpq so you can check on the treasures/ materials you have ]
>>
>>5565463
>Finally get that Slab of Star jade carved into a proper throne [crafting]
>Give the Black Bile Iron axes to Fu when he sobers up, and here exactly what he found, what that ball of vines are, and why he has a token to enter a martial tournament.
>Have Monu grind up Bamousha's arms into a poison or elixir and help her do so(Alchemy trial. DC 80. Failure still produces a poison or potion, success just makes it higher quality/ quantity )
>>
>>5565463
>Have Feiqing use Blood rain, chaos mist pearl and the BBI Axes to make Fu a mightier weapon [crafting]
>>
>>5565463
Sorry not sorry Feiquing. Learn something from working with such intricate materials.

>Make a proper throne FIRST PRIORITY
>Make Fu the better Axe. Second priority
>Speak with Ping about his encounter with the organ stealer
>Spend whatever time is left before the throne is finished Teaching.

right, so gameplan here is simple.

Once Feiquing has managed to make the throne, the current court we have should be sufficient to advance. While we do so, I would ideally like someone to keep tabs on Quiet Rain's known locations.
To the end of cultivation however, teaching would provide us with a bonus by how much over we roll the DC, so I figure it can't hurt to have.
>>
>>5565463
>Finally get that Slab of Star jade carved into a proper throne [crafting]
The people have wanted it for a while
>Give the Black Bile Iron axes to Fu when he sobers up, and here exactly what he found, what that ball of vines are, and why he has a token to enter a martial tournament.
Axe upgrade can be a gift for when he hits the next stage of cultivation.
>Check on Ping and ask about his encounter
He's finally in a decent condition to talk
>>
>>5565587
Supporting checking on Ping.
>>
>>5565587
+1
And I also believe that the axe upgrade we can give it to him once he get's out of Qi Condensation stage.
>>
>>5565463
>Finally get that Slab of Star jade carved into a proper throne [crafting]
>Give him the Black Horned skull as well to use in the throne

>Give Feiqing the Bangle of the Great Forge Devil, and the spirit sword manual. A smith will have more uses of it

>Have Monu grind up Bamousha's arms into a poison or elixir and help her do so(Alchemy trial. DC 80. Failure still produces a poison or potion, success just makes it higher quality/ quantity )

I want to keep the axes so we can use them when channeling Fu
>>
damn look at all these good ideas

>>5565463
>Give Feiqing the Bangle of the Great Forge Devil, and the spirit sword manual. A smith will have more uses of it
>Finally get that Slab of Star jade carved into a proper throne [crafting]
>Have Feiqing use Blood rain, chaos mist pearl and the BBI Axes to make Fu a mightier weapon [crafting]
>When Fu sobers up, hear exactly what he found, what that ball of vines are, and why he has a token to enter a martial tournament.
>Check on Ping and ask about his encounter

Ping's good to bookend anything we do. It's time!

>>5565703
Can Feqing survive using the Black Horned Skull as a crafting material at his current rank? If he can, +1 to that. But if he needs our help for it +1 to helping him not die. It's a lotta yin.
>>
>>5565463
>>5565703
Same as this but
>Have Feiqing use Blood rain, chaos mist pearl and the BBI Axes to make Fu a mightier weapon [crafting]

But only after we get our throne.
>>
>>5565463
>Give Feiqing the Bangle of the Great Forge Devil, and the spirit sword manual. A smith will have more uses of it
>Finally get that Slab of Star jade carved into a proper throne [crafting]
>Give Hǒumóguǐ the Humming Vine
>Ask Monu if the liquor preserving the Sanguine Divine Spirit Peach can be used for something
>Have Feiqing use Blood rain, chaos mist pearl and the BBI Axes to make Fu a mightier weapon [crafting]
>When Fu sobers up, hear exactly what he found, what that ball of vines are, and why he has a token to enter a martial tournament.
>Check on Ping and ask about his encounter
>Give Huili the Two Fire body stabilizers and the Orange Yellow Sunburst Poppies.
>Give Chuándǎpò the flood dragon scale
>>
>>5565841
Oh yeah, there are those things as well
Maybe she Chuan could use the dragon turtle shell too?
And Ping the prayer beads?
There's the white fur bear hide as well, maybe we can ask someone to make a cloak out of it. It's water aligned
There's the matter of the emperor's souls and possibly the book of beast transmutation. Maybe we could write some addendum on our own experiences to help our students when they become powerful enough to try?
And there's the pearl too
Oh, and the qilin horn could be useful for a metal aligned weapon, since it has ligthing powers

We have way too much loot
>>
>>5565463
>Give the Black Bile Iron axes to Fu when he sobers up, and here exactly what he found, what that ball of vines are, and why he has a token to enter a martial tournament.
>Have Feiqing use Blood rain, chaos mist pearl and the BBI Axes to make Fu a mightier weapon [crafting]
>Have Monu grind up Bamousha's arms into a poison or elixir and help her do so(Alchemy trial. DC 80. Failure still produces a poison or potion, success just makes it higher quality/ quantity )
>>
>>5565851
Also good ideas, maybe we could even make a copy of the book of beast transmutation for the princesses
>>5565841 (You)
supporting this
>>
>>5565841
I disagree on giving our students materials until they hit a bottle neck. Using aids before they need them is something that tends to backfire.

>>5565703
IF he can survive using that much Yin, that's the perfect fucking idea. Holy shit.
>>
>>5565463
>>5565552
Supporting.

Ping knows some important stuff that we haven’t gotten the chance to talk about previously.
>>
Ending the vote, tallying the result now.

Finally get that Slab of Star jade carved into a proper throne:9

-Give him the Black Horned skull as well to use in the throne:4

Give the Black Bile Iron axes to Fu when he sobers up:4

hear exactly what Fu found, what that ball of vines are, and why he has a token to enter a martial tournament.:6

Have Monu grind up Bamousha's arms into a poison or elixir and help her do so:4

Have Feiqing use Blood rain, chaos mist pearl and the BBI Axes to make Fu a mightier weapon:7

Speak with Ping about his encounter with the organ stealer:7

Spend whatever time is left before the throne is finished Teaching.:2

Give Feiqing the Bangle of the Great Forge Devil, and the spirit sword manual. A smith will have more uses of it:4

Give Hǒumóguǐ the Humming Vine:2

Ask Monu if the liquor preserving the Sanguine Divine Spirit Peach can be used for something:2

Give Huili the Two Fire body stabilizers and the Orange Yellow Sunburst Poppies.:2

Give Chuándǎpò the flood dragon scale:2

Dragon shell, prayer beads, fur hide, Pearl, qilin horn...etc: 2


So at Eleven votes

You'll order Feiqing to Carve the slab of Star Jade into a proper throne/ Cultivation platform, Use the pearl of condensed blood Qi and Grudge energy to upgrade the Black Bile Iron axes into a more powerful weapon, for Fu or yourself

Speak with Ping about the corpse stealing monster he and the Former dog of the Ling fought together, the so called corpse thief

And then, when Fu has sobered up, as him what he and Siwang found in the swamps, what that ball of thorned vines exactly is, and why he is presenting you with a token to enter a martial tournament between cultivation sects!

Update will arrive shortly

ALSO! MY JUNIORS! If you have the time, I insist you study the scripture "My disciples are all big villains". This old man had stumbled across it, and is enjoying it greatly!

>>5565801
>>5565805
>>5566030
He'd need to pass a trial to accomplish it without injury/side effects
>>
>>5567473

I think for the recommendation and have it added to the library of scriptures I study
>>
"You called for this humble disciple, Master?" Feiqing asks, as you lay curled at the edge of your sects miraculous Five elements spring, relishing in the purity and potency of the Qi radiating from within its shimmering, bubbling waters and admiring your reflection in them. Lifting your head lazily, your notched ears twitch and your whiskers raise as you greet your kneeling student with a wry smile and beckon him to sit before the edge of the radiant waters at your side. He bows his head once before coming to you as you commanded, remaining diligently standing and looking ahead as you gaze into your reflection's beautiful eyes that glittering like polished gemstones

"I have need of your talents as a smith and prodigious skill as a craftsman" You answer, not looking up at him as he stands vigilant at your side, as if some shadowy assassin that is now Qiang will suddenly leap out and lunge to cut your head from your neck. And, probably also to avoid looking at his own hideous mirror in the beautiful waters of your spring, which is a thought that makes you rather sad

"To be approached by my teacher and savior, and asked to make a great treasure, is a honor above anything even the imperial or heavenly court could grant me" He says, so touched by the gesture of asking him to do what he was seemingly put on earth to do that it sounds like he is about to cry "What, if I may be so bold to ask, is it you wish me to make for you? One as worldly and wise as yourself surely knows of great craftsman than I"

'I really don't' you think with a pout as Feiqing smiles almost as bright and radiantly as the waters before you 'You have a rare talent Feiqing, a natural aptitude for the forge, I wish you'd take more pride in yourself'

"That slab of star jade we found in the primordial wilds, it is perhaps our sect's great treasure" You say, licking the back of your paw to brush and preen at some pieces of fur that have decided to stand up in rebellion atop your noble brow "A high quality cultivation material that produces a great amount of spiritual energy, unstained by substances of the mortal realm"

"Of course I remember such a good piece of jade! I was once one of the emperor's own artisans!" Feiqing says proudly "It produces that rare heavenly Qi, Primordial like the wilds we found it within! I often find myself dreaming of it, to just gaze upon it and when we traveled with it, I remember how energized I felt from standing in its aura. It is rare to find a source of Qi already so pure and refined in this world"

"Yes, I want to make it into a throne, a proper throne, befitting one of my stature and position in life" You say with an air of haughtiness and imperial pride, flashing a grin that stuns Feiqing to silence "Then it will be worthy for me to use in my cultivation, and I'm sure a man as learned as you will find uses for its cuttings"
cont
>>
>>5567505

"I see...how clever of my master, benefitting the whole sect with one move, fools would think this an act of vanity, but I see your beneficence , do not worry lady Huanliuxue!" He says, rubbing his chin in thought and over thinking your motivations. Really, you just wanted a throne, but he is right, the cast offs of his carving could prove valuable still and benefit your disciples in their own cultivation or be used to craft great artifacts whose quality would surpass even the treasures of the mightiest of sects!

"Of course, teacher is very wise!" You declare happily and vainly "But a throne can be bejeweled and decorated with more materials, one day, I plan on improving and upgrading it with other rare treasures to make it the envy of even the heavens themselves, Heh-Heh-Heh"

"Your ambition is without bound and extends far beyond my own imagining, master" Feiqing says excitedly, overjoyed to be given a challenge of his skills "I will show you how far I have come"

'This challenge might be enough for you to join me in the foundation establishment stage' You think, idly extending a claw and checking that it remained keen and sharpened to your liking, but you do not tell Feiqing that. He doesn't need that big of a head, and it wouldn't do for a student to surpass their teacher so quickly!

"But that is not all I will ask of you, humble disciple and valued smith. I have another task for you to complete after that!" You shout commandingly smacking your paw on the ground "These demon forged axes I've bought are nice, but they can be better. Take this pearl of cursed energy and combine them, make them a terrible artifact worthy of respect and fear!"

Feiqing pounded his chest

"As you command!" He shouts "I shall seclude myself in my work, until the labor you have demanded is done! I shall bring to you two great treasures!"

And with that, the ape faced man hurries away to make what you've ordered, very joyfully.

Resting your head atop your paws, you sigh and wait for Ping to arrive, as you had sent Lei to fetch him and help Fu recover from his over indulgence the night before.

"You've summoned me, Lady Huanliuxue?" Ping asks cordially, cupping his fist as he enters the spring "What is it you wish of your loyal disciple?"

"I overheard you and that Qinxin fellow discussing some rather interesting things during last night's festivities" You say at once, rising to your feet and circling around him, flicking your tail back and forth "Something about Quiet Rain and stolen organs and bodies? Does that have something to do with that Demonic Cultivator you failed to slay"

Ping's eyes flashed with anger and his whitened hair raised as his aura pulsed with his rising rage. He lift's his pale arm and clenches it into a fist, taking a deep breath before releasing it. But the glare he wears does not vanish as easily. Grinding his teeth, he looks to the spring to try and subdue his anger before he speaks.
Cont
>>
>>5567506

"Jingyu. We were speaking of my former brother, a fellow outcast of the winter blossoming wisdom sect, though unlike myself, he was expulsed with good reason" He says sharply, clearly angered just talking about the man "He has become a heretic, a true demonic cultivator. He steals body parts and organs from other cultivators and implants them within himself, replacing his useless body parts with their innate treasures, stealing their potential alone with their lives. I...recognized many of the pieces of flesh he draped himself in, they were once my honored elder brothers and sisters"

"My my, how frightening!" You gasp, raising a paw to your mouth "How did he come to learn such a frighteningly gross art? Surely he couldn't have conjured such terrifying techniques from his own twisted mind? No"

Ping grits his teeth, his expression becoming a grimace of demonic rage.

"I had heard rumors, spoken amongst my fellow outer disciples in hushed whispers, that he was beguiled by a fox demon" he explains "And so was punished like Granny Monu was"

"So that is why my mother forbade you and him from talking of this matter to any but her or myself" You mutter "Because he was aided by the ghost of a fox"

"More than aided" Ping says "He is possessed by them and seems to regard them as their teacher. After our final clash, he emerged from his old flesh as a hybrid of fox and man, but that ghostly fox as well, took a charm Monu entrusted to me. And after seeing the token, the ghostly fox called off her disciple and they retreated"

Ping lifted his living hand, contemplating the wounds he sustained on it, taking half of its pinky and a quarter of its middle finger.

"I believe, she had knowledge of this duo. If not the organ thief, then the fox spirit that's taken him on as their student" Ping says slowly, cautiously, knowing he is treading on treacherous ground "I believe..."

"Xuebai, my elder sister" You answer to end the awkwardness of this exchange "That'd explain the spirits reaction to Monu's charm, and her reason for giving it to you to begin with. She must've heard rumors of this monstrous partnership and guessed she was her daughter reborn, using one of the martial descendants of her killers to reap a bloody harvest. How admirable! If she is my sister, I can already feel my respect for her growing"

Ping says nothing and just keeps staring at the missing parts of his fingers.

"That is likely" He says after a few moments of tense silence

"She's kept this a secret from even me. She must have her reasons" You add, shrugging your shoulders "If nothing else, her charm saved your life"

"And Qinxin's" Ping adds bitterly "That monster was ready to butcher us both before the fox intercede on our behalf, even bound our wounds. I should feel gratitude but..."

"You have a righteous heart" You state simply "And are furious to be saved by a monster...again"
Cont
>>
>>5567507

"You are no monster. I cannot say the same of Jingyu. He delights in what he has made himself" He says simply "But, I shall not intercede on family matters. If you wish, I can lead you to where Qinxin and I fought against him and the dogs of the Winter blossoming wisdom sect"

"We shall see how the wind turns" You answer vaguely "You may return to your daily training, Ping"

"As you command" He says, cupping his fist and bowing "But I warn you, Jingyu is a wild devil. You may have to put him down, even if it displeases your sister. A rabid dog should be put down"

And without another word, he vanishes into the darkness of the southern most tunnel connecting to the spring's chamber.

Feeling suddenly vexed, you decide to take a calming dip in the spring's waters. Not wanting to deal with wet fur, however, you turn human and wade into its depths, sitting on a ledge inside of it and relaxing. Fu will take sometime to wake up and recover from his hang over, and it is well within your rights as sect head to bathe in the spring, so you'll do just that to try and improve your mood after Ping sullied it with his unwanted advice.

You're splashing water on your face when Fu enters, dragging his feet, your blood red hair floating all around you.

"Lady Huanliuxue" He grumbles, rubbing his aching head "You called me here? if it is to scold me for drinking too much, trust me, I've already cursed myself enough to haunt me for two lifetimes"

"No, I've called you to hear your report of your and Siwang's mission into the dusk marshes" You say with an nonchalant wave of your hand "Just the basics for now, I don't need a step by step account or dramatic reenactment of everything He, you and the rest did"

"Of course" Fu says, kneeling down and bowing his head

"Begin with what exactly you found, the danger you dealt with and subjugated" You say, swimming across the spring so you can be closer to the side he kneels before

"I...don't think it exists anywhere else in the world" He begins hesitantly "It wasn't like anything else I've seen in this life of mind. It was some kind of monstrous flower, filled with malice and of a gluttonous nature. It devoured anything it could get its roots or vines on, draining them of their life essence, their Qi and every drop of fluid in their body. The moment Junior brother Siwang and I laid eyes upon it, we agreed it must be destroyed"

"Was it intelligent?" You ask, pulling up to peer over the edge he's kneeling before, hair flowing over your back and legs

"We believe so, at least enough to be aware of the utter depravity of its actions" He answers, opening his eyes which look rather fierce "We decided to slay it, to avenge the countless lives it consumed and end its threat"

"You both acted decisively, as leaders should, showing no weakness" You praise, shrugging your shoulders and kicking off the side of the wall you were hanging on to swim backwards "And what was that tangle ball of vines Siwang was perched on"
>>
>>5567508

"It was in its root ball, we assume its like a beast core but uh...for plants" Fu says with a carefree smile and shrug of his shoulders "We didn't know for sure, so we brought to Monu, who never saw anything like it, so we figured maybe you had heard of it before in hell or from some ancient ghost or something!"

"So honest! But I have not. Your guess is probably right" You say before diving down to wet your hair, kicking your legs in the air to propel yourself deeper into the spring. Fu remains where he first knelt, eyes never once trying to spy on you as you bathed or even showing any interest in peeping. No wonder Lanfen hasn't had any luck winning his heart yet.

Peeking out of the water, you noticed Fu was holding something in his hand

"What's that?" You ask excitedly, standing up and walking out of the spring the moment it caught your eye. Fu started, turning away hurriedly as you grabbed hold of his arm and pulled it up to inspect what he was holding. And dropped him to the ground as you recognized it immediately. It was a jade slip!

"An invitation" he said bashfully, bowing and presenting it to you, head still turned away, his neck straining as if he was trying to force himself to twist it around to look behind himself "We saved an orthodox cultivator. We...Siwang and I, could not leave a man so heroic to die in the swamps, or kill him ourselves. That flower monster took everything Siwang, Hong, Lanfen, Liu, the young beasts we found and myself to take down. And this man tried to fight it alone, even though Liu could've probably beaten him!"

"So~" You urge, poking his cheek playfully "What's it an invitation to"

"So, while Siwang lead the awakened beasts away, Lanfen, Liu, Hong and I acted as if we four alone slew the monster that had been in the process of draining him of his life and Qi" Fu explains, face contorting with exertion as you continue to poke it "Lanfen used her Spring Fairy Blossom art to bring him back from the verge of death and he was grateful, very grateful. And...well one thing lead to another, turns out his elders were beginning to worry about the disappearances of their sects followers and they were also very grateful"

"And?" You say, continuing to provoke your disciple with pokes, now using both hands

"They offered us a great gift, an invitation to a tournament between several of the sects in the region, not realizing we are heretics" He says, trembling, with a vein popping on his forehead "Master, please stop"

You smile innocently, holding your hands behind your back
Cont
>>
>>5567509

"As I was saying" He continues, looking very much relieved "The Dusk Marsh Wolves Sect head gave this to me in thanks, hoping we'd side with them against their rivals of the Summer Sea dawn sect, rigging the tournament in their favor without making it obvious. I wanted to spit in his face, but Lanfen pointed out this could be a great opportunity for our sect, so I restrained myself. The jade slip contains everything we need to enter the tournament as a"

Fu tensed as if resisting the urge to vomit

"A minor sect, whom would be allowed to enter three disciples, plus their sect head, if they were willing, to any of the brackets of the tournament" He says, eyes clenched shut and fist trembling with anger "I am told four influential sects have already entered and more may join as well, despite the current state of turmoil in the Chuan and Ling regions in the world of cultivation"

"Interesting" You sneer, taking the slip from his hands and sticking it under your ear

"Do you need anything else of me?" Fu asked earnestly

"No, go and sleep off the rest of your hang over!" You order cheerfully, waving him goodbye and ending up alone at the edge of the springs again.

"What to do, what to do" You ponder out loud, pacing around and tapping a finger to your chin

What do you do, Huanliuxue?

>Travel with Ping to search for this Jingyu, since he might be possessed by the ghost of your dead elder sister

>Decide it'd be fun to humiliate several orthodox sects at once, and enter the tournament personally, bringing Fu, Qiang and a third to enter as your sects three entrants, entering without naming your sect or self (Who is the third student you'll bring?)

>Study the plant core and see how it differs from a beast core (Mental trial. DC 85)

>Just consume the plant core to gain more power!

>Devout yourself to training and meeting your sects newest members...and give frog a name (Training trial DC 80)

>Write in
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>>5567511
>Devout yourself to training and meeting your sects newest members...and give frog a name (Training trial DC 80)

Could we use our Blood skills to at least somewhat improve Feiqing's appearance?
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>>5567511
>Devout yourself to training and meeting your sects newest members...and give frog a name (Training trial DC 80)
The urge to dab on the orthodox is strong, but we’ve got new students to meet and a Frog to name (or make him earn his own)
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>>5567511
First
>Devout yourself to training and meeting your sects newest members...and give frog a name (Training trial DC 80)
Then
>Travel with Ping to search for this Jingyu, since he might be possessed by the ghost of your dead elder sister
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>>5567511
>Sit down with Lei, Ping and Monu to finally find a fix for what is troubling

We keep forgetting about one of our first students. Should really remedy this.
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>>5567538
I'll change my vote to
>Sit down with Lei, Ping and Monu to finally find a fix for what is troubling
>Meet the new sect members and name frog, but don't teach them.
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>>5567560
I removed the teaching because I hoped it would allows us to do two things at once.
But if teaching them and fixing Lei can both be done, I'm ok with it.
>>
I wonder if these might might be good questions for Siwang to meditate on

If someone unfamiliar with local customs breaks a serious taboo to save the life of which in their culture is more important than following laws and you're asked as an outsider who's version of justice do you follow? That of the native culture, that of the accused or your own? If you choose to not to follow your own sense of justice can you see any way your decision doesn't go against what you stand for?

It is justice to simply detain someone who keeps committing terrible crimes and has no intention of stopping out of the fear that killing them yourself might send you over the edge and make you worse than them?

And finally how would someone who picks differently than you claim their choices are just?
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>>5567560
Fuck it, I'm keeping just fixing Lei
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>>5567560
+1
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>>5567511
>Devout yourself to training and meeting your sects newest members...and give frog a name (Training trial DC 80)
Be a proper sect leader first, then

>Travel with Ping to search for this Jingyu, since he might be possessed by the ghost of your dead elder sister
Ping needs to get stronger to purge Lei. We’ll use this as a training opportunity too.

>Ask Monu if she would like to accompany you, or travel to the tournament under the guise of the sect leader.
I know Monu would want to meet her first daughter again. But if she feels she isn’t ready for it yet, perhaps because her failure to protect her still weighs too heavily, then she can lead the tournament instead.

Unsure on who the third student would be though since we’re taking Ping and Feiqing is busy. The others can sort that out.
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>>5567519
I remember very early on Feiqing was doing body remodeling as part of his cultivation, so it’s possible he’ll do it himself as part of his training.
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>>5567511
>Sit down with Monu and Ping to fix Lei.

>Train our students and meet them

I don't wanna get involved in the sect conflicts. not until we are minimum of golden core. I don't even want to send Monu until we are sure there is a prize for the winner.

And besides, how long does it take for Fequing to finish the throne? Because I'm not big on facing our sister either until we have the power advantage.
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>>5567593

I will support this, the tournament is a secondary concern to the wellbeing of our sect, but if we were to go i would suggest to have Monu as acting head and Fu, Qiang and Huan as students.

Since Monu is known it may cause uproar, but other than the waning influence of her old sect i don't think the others would ostracize her outright since she isn't strictly an heretic by herself.
And would be the perfect foil to cover huan being the true and nonhuman leader.

I also feel like pointing out that this will be a good smack in the face of orthodoxy, with all the repercussion and fame that this action will generate.
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>>5567511
>Travel with Ping to search for this Jingyu, since he might be possessed by the ghost of your dead elder sister
Time to find Big Sis!
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>>5567508
I like how Ping regains his old confidence when it comes to important things, even though Huan doesn't like it. That crazy stubborn confidence of someone trying to argue the existence of magical beasts to a magical beast in a wilderness full of monsters has upgraded into a stalwart moral compass that can say the ugly things with patience to himself and with reverence to us.

>>5567511
Can we pick two?
>Devout yourself to training and meeting your sects newest members...and give frog a name (Training trial DC 80)
>Travel with Ping to search for this Jingyu, since he might be possessed by the ghost of your dead elder sister
>+write in:
It would be wise to talk to Monu about her old sect before we go. Depending on how things go with Jingyu we might want to use Xiaosi's name for all its infiltrative worth with the Winter Blossoming Sect. Any additional information about them before we go will be helpful... and it feels like common sense to talk to her before we potentially meet our ghost sister.

>>5567519
I think someone brought it up before but yeah we properly could now. We could even just turn him into an actual monster (but symmetricly undeformed) to make up the difference. He'd be eternally grateful for any positive change we make for him.
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>>5567673
I think the repercussions might be a bit more than we can handle at this point to be honest. Our students strongest abilities are heretical techniques, and while Fu and Qiang are the only ones I'd trust to hold back on their more obviously weird stuff I don't trust the other sects disciples to not push things dangerously to the point where they'll need to use their actual power.

It feels like a good way for us to make bad mistakes. Not least of all the fact that sect heads will have strong enough senses to know what we are if we hang around them too closely, you cannot underestimate core-formation or golden cores pretending to be righteous, they'll try to fuck us somehow, beyond literally. Direct fighting between us won't be needed for them to want to put down a minor sect potentially able to challenge their own strength.

On the other hand, I really want to go because they absolutely deserve us. And any information we can glean from the tournament will be incredibly helpful later on.
I'm 100% sure that by participating (even without our ridiculous bullshit) we'll wind up causing the complete disbanding of multiple minor sects when their disciples look on to a beauty like us fighting on par or better than major sect disciples.
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>>5567889
We don't know what kind of opposition there will be, if that guy was that feeble and his third rate sect could get enough pull to extend an invitation on the spot i think this regional tournament won't see many masters on the level of monu, if any at all. (I don't actually remember what her level is but i think that with her dao not many would risk her ire, even the confident wolf won't dare attack a viper unless starved after all).

Besides grampa won't thrust us into a den of vipers without the chance to discreetely skedaddle if needed.
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>>5567904
That's true. With the sect conflicts we have ample time to avoid any major regional players from diverting their major resources against us. It gives me another idea if we wish for caution, too.

There's nothing stopping us from engaging in early espionage of the contenders before we arrive in actual complement. We can cover our bases with Monu and the intelligence we gain by just looking at who's attending. We'd still need to be careful, all our techniques tell a story that the righteous will begin plotting against with awareness if we showboat them.
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>>5567511
>Fix Lei dammit
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>>5567673
Yeah, pissing off the orthadoxy directly isn't a great idea until we can make a golden core. We need to be the bigger fish in nearly every situation when interacting with them, it's quick death otherwise.
>>
Ending the vote, tallying the result now. Hope you all had a wonderful time with your jade beauties or young masters yesterday. I, however, spent the event practicing closed door Cultivation and testing medicinal elixirs on myself.

Devout yourself to training and meeting your sects newest members...and give frog a name:7
-No teaching:1

Travel with Ping to search for this Jingyu, since he might be possessed by the ghost of your dead elder sister:4
-It would be wise to talk to Monu about her old sect before we go:1

Sit down with Lei, Ping and Monu to finally find a fix for what is troubling:5

Ask Monu if she would like to accompany you, or travel to the tournament under the guise of the sect leader.:2

And yes, you can pick two

So you'll devout yourself to training and meeting your sects newest members, and give frog a name

AND THEN sit down with Lei, Ping and Monu and try to exorcise the demon sealed within him, after the training roll has been made!
>>
The intermediate update is big! Almost as big as my love for you all.
>>
Well, despite how fun it sounds to publicly humiliate the orthodox sects and humble their disciples with a string of beatings, you know well enough that that'd be courting death since where there are students there are sure to be masters. And those masters, your strong and healthy sense of self preservation is happy and keen to point out, would present a real threat and might even be able to sense that you were a beast even if you met them while in your human guise, and even if they couldn't they would be more informed than their disciples and might then be suspicious about the odd techniques, skills, abilities and powers shown by yourself and your disciples. And even if you sent Monu in your stead, she'd recognized surely. She was a legendary beauty in the time of the old men who now run the sects of the world, and you know men don't easily forget a pretty face. And you know your mother to be vain and proud enough to refuse to disguise herself with the wrinkled face she had before she was revitalized and de-aged

So you decide to put of that fun outing for later date, when you'd be strong enough to face slap anyone who tried to pick a fight or reveal your true nature to the crowds and attendants. Fighting Ping's old martial brother and seeing if he was truly possessed by Snow White...you want to do that, as Monu's daughter, you really do. You've always wished you could've met your senior sister but...But, there's more important things to do and from what Ping has told you before, he actually died for a few moments when he fought this Jing...Jingwhatever fellow! And Ping is tough, he's thriving with a hunk of ghostly Yin Qi infused flesh attached to him and survived the root growing arrow and initial burst of death Qi you used to rid him of that parasitic plant, before it could rend his heart apart. So you'd want to be certain you'd be able to thrash that corpse devouring boy before you do, And since Ping knows where he is, it'd be wise to make certain he was completely recovered, just in case you need his help in a fight.

That shouldn't take much longer, especially if he focuses on resting. And if your sister's supposed toady really is recovering from being exploded in meaty chunks, you shouldn't have to worry about him being stronger than he was when he almost snuff out Ping's life. Since he has to be resting to recover from that.

Come to think of it, you have a bunch of new disciples you need to train and Monu hasn't yet told you if Yuyi can cultivate or not. She might not have tested her yet, you aren't sure exactly how much time you spent in the yellow springs with Yujijiao. Not to mention, some of the entourage you took from that dog of an emperor and his underling Mao can cultivate as well, and it'd do to learn their names and help them begin their cultivation as well.

That's what you'll do. Meeting your newest students and helping them train! That shouldn't take long!
Cont
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And, as you head of to do just that, deciding it'd be best to greet the beasts as a beast and the humans as a human, you spot a flash of red and sense a familiar presence, spying on you shamelessly

"LEI!" You bark, snapping your fingers. Immediately the head of your mute disciple pops up from behind one of the decorative rocks set around the artificial pond containing the wonderous spring, looking guilty behind the red cat mask he has taken to constantly wearing

"Out!" You snap, snapping again and pointing to the nearest tunnel leading out of the room

He staggers away, and you shake your head. Once you've finished greeting your newest students and helping them take their first step on the paths of their cultivation, you'll scold him more severely. And see if something can be done about his curious affliction, since he is one of your earliest students and it is rather pitiful for the man to be left behind by his brothers Ping and Feiqing.

"I should also give Frog a name, before I do any of that" You mumble to yourself, as you turn back to your natural shape and plod off to find where the first of your marsh born disciples have caroled their fellow students.

Luckily, they haven't taken them on a tour into the depths of your temple and you find them rather easily, gathered by the golden lotus pedestal.

"Ah! If it isn't the princess herself!" Zhurou huffs, lifting his one horned head just to kneel and bow it deeply "I was just discussing how all of us a have our own storied lineage to compare ourselves to and perhaps one day define! Nothing as awe inspiring as your own Imperial bloodline, of course, sect head, but, for example the Meiwei name is one that is spoken in reverent tones even amongst the two legs. I..I don't know why, but elder brother Huili laughed when I told him this! The nerve of the barbarian!"

"He is our senior brother, he doesn't have to be polite to us, Zhurou. Ribbit" Frog said plainly

"He's given me a slap already" Houmogui growled "He's got quite the temper, so I've been keeping out of his way"

"You shouted in his ear, challenging him to a fight, he was merciful" Yinying says sharply, approaching you and reminding you how you used to be quite a bit smaller "Mistress, I have made certain to keep the newest arrivals to our illustrious sect from wandering, so you may meet them all at once"

"Thank you, you deserve praise for your initiative" You say, making your fellow house cat purr in delight "Deliver these orders to Qiang and ask her to gather the latest hopefuls who are human in one room, so I may meet them after my fellow beasts have introduced themselves and Frog has been given a name"

"oh! I'll be named by my own teacher! What an honor! What an honor!" The young beasts chirps cheerfully, hoping around as Yinying bows once again and swaggers away, but not before turning to the group of young beasts Siwang brought back and lifting his head, motioning them to move forward and present themselves to you

However
Cont
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>>5569889

Zhurou marches in front of them and lifts his head high and haughtily, and you can already tell he intends to make them adhear to the proper protocol of introducing themselves to their betters.

"Hah! You cannot all present yourselves to the great Huanliuxue! She is the scion of a high house of the beastly folk! You must seek a personal audience and bow your heads deeply! Kowtow and beat your foreheads on the ground for being of so arrogant manner! Forgive them, they have not been taught proper etiquette as we of the wild nobility have, tch" He says, scolding the poor, confused creatures before bowing his head "I will take it upon myself to be their etiquette tutor, so they shan't make fools of themselves or offend one as might as you, Huanliuxue"

"Thank you for interjecting, Zhurou" You say through your teeth, but the Pig doesn't catch your annoyance, Houmogui does and titters behind her wings as the dignified hog wears a self satisfied smile and steps out of the way.

It seems there are four more beasts calling your sect home. A moth, a Tiger, a Sika deer, and an otter.

The moth crawls up to you, moving sluggishly and tiredly. She had a white, fluffy body with black bands and skull patterns on her glittering wings and one atop her head.

"I...haaah" She yawned, clearly having been woken up consider it was the middle of the day "am...am Báifěnchì ( 白粉翅, White Powder Wings) or at least that is what the uncle who kept me in a cricket cage called me. But, he had breathed his last and returned to being naught but dust"

"Oh was he a poet?" You ask, noticing that the little girl seems to speak somewhat like one

"I..yes" She says meekly and gloomily, not daring to look you in your eyes "He read a poem to me, before I recognized myself and awoke to the world, and hid me from the others like him before they all became ghosts"

"Senior brother Siwang said they found her weeping under his corpse" Houmogui said sadly, sniffling as she crawls up to your "What a sad story, innit?"

"No sadder than my own" You sigh, shaking your head "I can trust he was buried then, if they found him like this"

"Oh, no, I kept his tiny corpse" Baifenchi giggled darkly "I can't bear to part with my uncle"

Oh, so she and you are much more alike than you thought, you thought he to be more like Yuyi but she might be even more macabre minded than you are!

"We all grieve in our own way" You laugh, as she continues to giggle, clearly disturbing Houmogui, Zhurou and the other three. Not Frog though, he seems blithely unaware of how creepy it is to carry a desiccated corpse around with you. You can already guess she might be able to become the second of the heirs to the Ruler of the Great Wheel's Law(统治者的这重大轮回法律, Tǒngzhìzhědīzhèzhòngdàlúnhuífǎlǜ) or perhaps follow after Ping's nameless exorcist arts or Fu's own nameless cultivation method.

"N..next in line" Zhurou says quickly, so scared he forgot to be polite
Cont
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>>5569892

The tiger approached next, looking you up and down scrutinizing you carefully and judging every part of you. He had a shimmering silver coat, which made you wonder if all Demon Tigers had metallic fur like Jiùqūliáoyá, but he was clearly longer than him, with black whiskers and a broad chest.

"You're a house cat!" He gasps in disbelief, looking down at you since, like the old crooked fang, he's the size of a horse "Why, you had such a presence I believed you to be a tigress! You certainly surpass them in beauty, princess. You've taken my breath away! Wanna be my woman?"

You tilt your head, baffled by his response and can see Zhurou fuming already that he'd speak to you so casually

"Hey, are you a playboy or something!" Houmogui barked, the tiger just grinned "Don't talk to the boss like that! Her mother's around ya know? Do you want to be neutered"

"Heh" He chuckles, looking quite smug "I'd be a fool not to take the chance! She is a stunning beauty, even as a"

he stops, noticing you were glaring at him. He fell to the ground, paralyzed as you swamped him with your ghostly aura, shivering from the chill of it

"I appreciate flattery and compliments and respect confidence, but you're being too bold, boy" You snap with a low, threatening growl as you place your paw on his head, claws outstretched "I'll forgive the wagging of your tongue, tell me your name and quickly!"

"Yòuzǎiwáng ( 幼崽王, Young King)" He barked obediently "The old wood gatherers called me as such, after seeing how many mates I had before...well I became so proud of their compliments I realized how stupid they all were, heh"

"How presumptuous and vapid" You say dully, rolling your eyes "You may stand"

He smacked his head to the ground twice as he backed away, hair standing on end and tail fluffed up.

"What pretty fur you have brother. Ribbit" Frog remarked as the deer cautiously stepped around him. They had golden horns and a coat the color of a Buddhist robe, orange and red, with nine green pearls set beneath their neck and over their shoulders

"I greet you, my elder" They say politely, so much like a Buddhist monk, you'd half expect Yongzheng and his master Shoushan to walk from behind him "I have named myself Sēnlín Zhérén (森林 哲人, Forest Sage) And I know the one known as Houmogui, for she and I shared the monastery she nested in as our home"

"Hey hey" The bat herself huffs angrily, flapping her wings "Don't act familiar when I don't even know who you are!"

"Oh, forgive me, this monk forgot that he was not awakened when he first met, you ate some of my brothers, drained them of blood, but I hold no grudge for you must feed on blood. Tis the nature of things"

"Oh...sorry" Houmogui says, deflating and acting like her trueself

"How did you awaken then?" You ask, as the Baifenchi and Youzaiweng told you
Cont
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>>5569894

"I fed on the bones of monks" He says, and you open your eyes a bit, that is new. Most beasts seem to ascend from experiencing a strong and complex emotion, not by eating dead people. How curious

"Do..do not eat me" He says nervously as your smile reveals your fangs

"I wouldn't" You say with a grin "I haven't eaten another demonic beast in a few years, Heh-Heh-Heh"

He chuckles nervously, and tries to graceful return to his place in the lineup, but his trembling legs prevent him from looking dignified as he does so.

The otter is in front of you, and grins widely. He has a red coat like you, though his under belly is spotlessly white rather than pink and his fangs are black as charcoal.

"Oi. Oi! I was told you're a good killer! Can teach me how to kill better, yeah?" He says, crudely, clearly only recently learning how to talk properly and sounding younger than even Frog, and unlike Frog or Siwang or Chuandapo, Or Houmogui, he doesn't seem like a good kid, but rather like the brats who'd pull on your tell when you were just a dumb cat or the thugs who stand outside of seedy inns "Is that true? Is it? Huh? Huh?

"Do you have a name?" You say strictly, puffing up your chest and fur and using an authoritative tone to make the little hellion know you're the boss around here

"Jiangliehuo(江劣貨 , River Bastard)" He sneers, blinking rapidly "Good name, yeah? You're Huanliuxue, that's also a good name! I like you! You smell of death! Like the other red fur! But different. Much stronger. I like you"

"R...river bastard?" You gasp, caught off guard by his name which sounds like it began as a curse or insult

"Did I say it wrong?' he asked, distressed and frantic

"No you...you said it right" You say with a big smile "Uh, you did good kid, just get back in line. All of you will begin training and be properly inducted into the sect after I've met the other new arrivals"

"And what about my name, huh, huh?" Frog asked, leaping atop Jiangliehuo's head "Will I be named? Will I? I really want to know what to call myself, teacher! Ribbit Ribbit"

"Of course, of course, in fact, like Wusheng Siwang and Senlin Zheren, I'll give you two names, since you've waited so long to have but one"

Your heart melts in the pure joy radiating from the youngster's gem like eyes and the warmth of his overjoyed smile, and it broke your heart that you had to tell him that he'd have to wait

"After your training" You gently, turning away to avoid the full brunt of damage seeing his sad eyes and disappointed frown would inflict on you, but you need time to think of a good, fitting name. You had some ideas, but you couldn't rush this, it'd stick with him for the rest of his life or at least until he had enough skill to take an art name.

You turn around, and head to your. There you turn human and get dressed, and then find out where Qiang took the Maids and Guards with the ability to cultivate Qi and sought them out.
Cont
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>>5569896

Oddly enough, there were four of them as well! Two maids and two guards. So two girls and two men

"Oh my" One of the maids gasped as you entered the room with a confident stride "I heard you were beautiful as a girl, but I didn't think you'd be so breathtaking"

"Oh! You're Huanliuxue! I had heard gossip you could transform into a human, what beautiful hair! I'd love to brush it" The other maid said, clapping her hands and clearly delighted to see you

"Pick your jaw off the floor" Qiang scolded, smacking one of the guards on the head "And stop looking at her like Lanfen does Fu, its weird"

He bowed his balding head, clearly embarrassed. The other guard was a young man, with strange hair like that one brat you scolded in Suiqi, but duller and more like dried grass than gold.

"Wait! You have to remember us right! You were in lady Yuyi, or uh so I heard" The first, younger made cries happily, her freckled face beaming with excitement as her older, more dignified counterpart frowned. Neither of them were beautiful, considering the younger's freckles and the elder's long face.

And to your astonishment, you actually did remember the two once you got a better look at them!

"Mao Weixiao's cousin, Mao Yue" You say, smiling at the freckled faced girl, who covered her mouth and squealed happily, nearly fainting from hearing you say her name "And Niu, sorry your parents just called you girl"

Niu sighed and hung her head "They wanted a son" She said defeatedly and glumly "At least you remembered I wasn't just girl"

"Poor Niu thought she'd get a name after her training, but she wasn't, and then she thought she'd find a good man to marry in the emperor's court, but she didn't!" Yue said carelessly, causing Niu to reel from the wound dealt to her already limited pride. Qiang glowered at her, but said nothing.

"And who are you two, I don't remember if you came from Mao or the palace" You say bluntly, stomping to the two guards.

"Wang Wencheng" The older, balding one said meekly "An old drunkard! Not sure why I was brought here! Your daughter didn't tell us! I thought we were going to be sacrificed to be honest, ehehe, why else would a demonic beast summon a useless third son of a impovershed noble family?"

"Oh? She's the big cat" The younger man yawned "I thought you were red hairs sister, nice to meet your acquaintance, divine beast. I'm Bo. Mao hired me cause I could fight good, couldn't remember which direction my family's farm was in, so I followed Lady Yuyi"

"Are you an idiot?" you ask bluntly

"Yeah, probably" Bo said shamelessly

"Please make it quick, oh benevolent beast queen' Wencheng cried "M..may I be so bold to ask for one last sip of wine before we go?"

"She isn't going to kill us, you fool" Niu sighed heavily and dourly "Obviously she has need of us"

"oh! Are we to be your servants, oh illustrious beauty?" Yue asked cheerfully
Cont
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>>5569897

"You'll see, Qiang, lead them to the practice yard and get them some proper daoist robes" You say with a smile and nod, Qiang understanding immediately that you intended to elevate them to the level of inner disciples without more being spoken

Twelve. Twelve new students.

This was going to be a real pain, teaching them all how to cultivate and figuring out cultivation laws and methods for so varied a gaggle of novices.

'A challenge even for a genius prodigy such as I' you thought with a nervous smirk 'and I still need to decide frog's new name!"

You found yourself chewing one of your nails without meaning to.

Roll 1d100. Best out of four. DC 80

Next vote will be a double vote, One for Lei's inner demon and one for Frog's name
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Rolled 96 (1d100)

>>5569898
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Rolled 57 (1d100)

>>5569898
>>
Rolled 63 (1d100)

>>5569898
So many cuties!
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Rolled 13 (1d100)

>>5569898
Blammo
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>>5569894
Here are my admittedly simple ideas for some of our new students
For Sēnlín Zhérén I'm thinking either a bone or wood based dao, maybe a pride based dao Yòuzǎiwáng and given how aggressive Jiangliehuo is he could benefit from at least learning Fu's fightingstyle even if he isn't a good match for our first student's dao
>>
>>5569904
Good Success! 10 over DC

Special condition met!

Update will arrive shortly
>>
But! You would not be Huanliuxue if you backed down just because you were faced with difficulties in the road. It is the nature of a genius to overcome all obstacles in their way and you are of course a genius among geniuses! While this would be a great challenge for any other, it will be as easy as turning over your paw you are certain. Confident and composed once more, you seek out your twelve new students in the practice yard of your temple. And so many disciples being gathered in one place has garnered the attention of their seniors, who stand by the side, observing them but doing little else. Except for Qiang who has taken it upon herself to keep peace between the twelve students, since the men are frightened by the beasts and the beasts are frightened by the men, which is how they usually react to the other, actually.

Approaching them in your human guise since you don't want to waste time undressing so as not to ruin your clothes, you walk into the yard and raise a hand as Monu moves to rise from where she was lounging and smoking her pipe. This is a trial you shall face alone, otherwise you can't say you truly overcame it now can you? Qiang, seeing that you've arrived steps out of the yard and joins her peers in their spectating. She looks exhausted from babysitting them all even though she only had to look after her juniors for a few minutes.

The eight beasts and four humans stand at attention, looking rather nervous in their own ways, not sure exactly how they're supposed to act while being watched by all of the best and brightest of the sect and its leadership nor knowing why you've gathered them all together and what's going to happen to them now

"You should all feel honored, you're all blessed" You say kindly and loudly so they won't think you're planning on eating them or anything like that "With rare potential, the potential to cultivate! Of course I'm saying this to the human amongst you, since I haven't met a magical beast who wasn't born capable of cultivating, and I doubt they exist in this world, no matter how vast it is"

"Cultivate?" Yue asks airily, raising a hand

"Cultivate Qi" Yinying helpfully answers "The spiritual energy of the world that exists in all things, living or not. Forgive me, Princess, for speaking out of turn, but I did not believe you should waste your breath on explaining the most basic concepts of Daoist Cultivation"

"Oh do not worry, my kinsmen, I appreciate the help. It is oh so tiresome and boring to have to repeat myself whenever I accept a new batch of students" You say with a witch like cackle, shrugging your shoulders as you skip closer to them "But that's the gist of it! You were born with bodies that can draw in and refine Qi within themselves, and thus they can be tempered with it and refined themselves, thus your vitality and lifeforce can be strengthened!"
Cont
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>>5570087

Houmogui, Frog, Zhurou, and Yinying listen but not closely, since they've already had Qi Cultivation explained to them before, but Mao Yue, Wang Wencheng, Niu, Bo, Senlin Zheren, Youzaiwang, Baifenchi listen intently hanging on your every word in an almost enchanted fascination. Jiangliehuo however has to be smacked before he pays attention, since he was busy chasing after his tail when you began speaking.

"Thus you can perhaps one day become immortal, but between now and then, you can harness the spiritual energy of heaven and earth to become powerful, far powerful than any mundane man or beast and use it to perform fantastical techniques or to fuel mystical spells" You continue on once you're certain the otter will be listening "However, Two thirds of you would be slaughtered if you were found by your fellow daoists and the other third would be stuck practicing their pathetic Orthodox laws had they found you before I did! A tragic fate either way, to be sure"

You cackle, trying to lighten the mood with that joke, but it doesn't seem to work so you move on before things can become too awkward.

"So consider yourselves all twice blessed, that you were born capable of becoming magical beasts or that your spiritual roots and meridians are of fine enough quality to cultivate to begin with!" You shout, covering up your stumbling attempt at humor. And, Mao Yue's hand shoots up again

"You're wondering what spirit roots and meridians are, aren't you" You sigh, realizing just how little knowledge she has and thus how much you have to teach her before she can begin her cultivation. She nods with a big, dumb smile on her face. Your own smile twitches, but you hold it up and do not grimace as you much as you want to. A headache is already rippling inside your head.

"Well then" You say gingerly, repressing the urge to grit your teeth or disdainfully roll your eyes "I'll include a detailed explanation of what spiritual roots and meridians are, as well as the location and purpose of the eight Extraordinary meridians and the twelve Principal Meridians, in your first lessons."

"What else will we learn in these beginner classes" Frog asks excitedly, hopping up and down

"The three dantians, how to measure your cultivation base" You say, counting down with your fingers "Simple Breathing exercise, novice Qi circulation techniques, Meditation methods, and body strengthening exercises and mystical studies if you're able to grasp everything that comes before"

Only now do you truly grasp yourself, just how rigorous these first lessons will be for both student and teacher. Especially teacher since you're determined to teach all twelve at once
Cont
>>
"When do we begin? Can we have lunch first?" Bo asks hopefully

"Yeah, starving!" Jiangliehuo barks

"Oh...oh this is going to be harder to learn than I thought" Houmogui winces

"Lunch can wait" Zhurou says with a pained expression "It is a great privilege to be taught by Huanliuxue herself! An incomparable honor!"

"It is for Lady Huanliuxue to decide' Yinying says simply

"Oh! Oh! Will I get my name once I've began cultivating?" Frog asks excitedly, eyes aglow with anticipation

"I think this curriculum is reasonable, but I understand my fellow students could not handle more" Shenlin Zheren states simply

"What's that supposed to mean!" Houmogui barks, trying to act tough

"Oh! Oh! this is going to be fun, right Niu?" Yue says as you notice that Niu's eyes are burning with ambition, and have been since she heard you say "immortality"

"Wait...so I'm actually not worthless!" Wang Wencheng cheers suddenly, leaping up into the air, throwing up his hands in triumph. Frog joins him, hopping up and thinking its a fun game

"You can have food once I'm confident you've made progress and entered the lowest stage of Cultivation, Qi Condensation" You say sternly, crossing your arms and sitting down "Now, we'll begin with the most basic of the basics, how to meditate. Once you have that down, we'll move onto breathing exercises, and if none of you fall behind, I'll so you how Absorb Qi from the natural world and then, once you've figured that out, how to refine and purify it with Qi Circulation"

Special Condition Met! Successfully train/ teach 10 or more disciples at once! You have become Great Teacher! This and Any future training secession you lead will provide greater benefits to your students! And greater rewards for you!

You're exhausted, you've been working for days to teach all twelve of your sects latest inner disciples and guide them along their first bumbling steps as cultivators, ensuring their initial development and studies go by without issue. Each of them have problems unique to them, have trouble understanding one step or another, or need to have some simple detail explained to them again and again before they can comprehend it. This is, of course, expected of beginners and you had to do it with everyone else you taught. However you never taught this many students at one time! So it is much more tiring and annoying. But, you endure this hardship and gradually move forward with them, finding it easier to teach them all as you progress further and further with lessons that, individually, might've taken a week or so, but with them all together takes almost an entire month.

But in the end, your greatest challenge as a teacher and mentor bears fruit, even if you feel more stressed than you ever had before. None of your prior training or teaching efforts compare to this undertaking but...you've succeeded.

And the twelve youngest of your sect can now be called Cultivators and proper daoists, even if they are the least of both
Cont
>>
>>5570092

Frog has achieved Qi Condensation stage rank 2 (Focus: Purity), Houmogui has achieved Qi Condensation stage, Rank 2 (Focus: Martial: Grappling), Zhurou has Achieved Qi Condensation stage, Rank 2 (Focus: Grace), Yinying has achieved Qi Condensation stage, rank 2 (Focus: Stealth), Baifenchi has achieved Qi Condensation stage, rank 2 (Focus: Necromancy!?), Youzaiwang has achieved Qi Condensation stage, Rank 2 (Focus: Martial), Senlin Zheren has achieved Qi Condensation Stage, Rank 2 (Focus; Longevity/ Meditation, Jiangliehuo has achieved Qi Condensation stage, rank 2 (Focus: Martial: Ferocity), Mao Yue has achieved Qi Condensation stage, rank 2 (No Focus, an all rounder like Siwang), Niu has achieved Qi Condensation stage, rank 2 (Focus: Longevity), Wang Wencheng has achieved Qi Condensation stage rank 2 (No Focus), Bo has achieved Qi Condensation stage, Rank 2 (Focus: Martial: Brawling)

A large school is like a large household, its head is blessed with prosperity and deserves recognition for their talents, only a truly sagacious mind could handle the strain of training so many disciples! +60 to your next training/ cultivation roll. Total Bonus 168!

They're not ready to pick their cultivation methods, but they soon will be. And if you had the energy to do it now, you would be able to help them pick, you're sure. But you need to rest, or else you might go crazy! Besides, there's two matters that take precedence, at least in your mind.

Frog's naming ceremony, which he is very excited for.

And freeing Lei of his curse at long last, which will probably be very dangerous and not just for him!

Double vote

What do you name frog?

>Bright Spring

>Bubble Chorus

>Murky Gem

>Cheerful Venom

>Write in

And how do you prepare/ Deal with Lei's treatment, Huanliuxue? Ping will need to make an Underling Magic Trial. DC 60, no matter what is chosen

>Seal a chamber and have Ping rip it out of him, and if it doesn't submit immediately, beat the hell out of it with Monu and Ping

>Prepare a vessel to transfer it into, so you don't have to fight it (Magic/knowledge trial DC 75)

>Give Ping some pills that'll protect him from the cold, then, along with Ping and Monu, drag him to hell so you can release the demon into its natural habitat (Alchemy trial. No roll needed because of Monu and your own expertise)

>Decide it'd be amusing to release the demon into the territory of an orthodox sect, and do that. The enemy of my enemy is my friend, right? [Bad Karma]

>write in
>>
>>5570100
>Bright Spring
Froggo is the purest sonnu


>Prepare a vessel to transfer it into, so you don't have to fight it (Magic/knowledge trial DC 75)
>>
>>5570100
>Murky Gem
>Prepare a vessel to transfer it into, so you don't have to fight it (Magic/knowledge trial DC 75)
>>
>>5570100
>>Bright Spring
I don't know which name sounds the most like croaking in Chi nee so I'll pick this one. Because he likes to jump.
>Prepare a vessel to transfer it into, so you don't have to fight it (Magic/knowledge trial DC 75)
Ayo bruv the hell you doin in there and how'd you get in there?
>>
>>5570100
Bright venom?
Chirping opal? (Did the chinese knew of opals?)

Given i know nothing about chinese names this mix and match may be wrong.
In which case bright spring is good.

>Prepare a vessel to transfer it into, so you don't have to fight it (Magic/knowledge trial DC 75)

Best prepare for a fight regardless though, you never know with crafty devils.


Also as a suggestion since i get lost with chinese names and how the cast balooned with this new influx of disciples if you could include a minimal description or attach something after the name (like zhorou the pig, or horned hog, or graceful suine) after they reappear into the story it would be much easier to understand who is who.
>>
>>5570100
>Bright Spring
The monk deer reminds me of the story that Shoushan told us about his beast friend. Maybe all deers are buddhist-like?
>Seal a chamber and have Ping rip it out of him, and if it doesn't submit immediately, beat the hell out of it with Monu and Ping
>>
>>5570100
>Bright Spring
it's inoffensive.

>Prepare a vessel
>Seal a chamber

We should do this in a sealed area anyway.
>>
For those who want an idea of what it'd look like in Chinese
Bright Spring (Cànlàn chūntiān)
Bubble Chorus (Pàopào dàhéchàng)
Murky Gem (Ànsè bǎoshí)
Cheerful Venom (Huānkuài dúyè)
>>5570100
>Bubble Chorus
Hard to resist the last name having Huan partially name a frog after herself, but Paopao sounds cute
>Seal a chamber and prepare a vessel
Sealing a chamber is a smart move either way, especially with all our newbies around

Also
>Baifenchi has achieved Qi Condensation stage, rank 2 (Focus: Necromancy!?)
Is she planning on reviving her "uncle"?
>>
>>5570293
I'm more interested in what the "Purity" focus is.
>>
>>5570294
My first bet would be something tied to how he was able to absorb the toxins of the waters we found him in.
>>
>>5570100
>Bright Spring
>Prepare a vessel to transfer it into, so you don't have to fight it (Magic/knowledge trial DC 75)

> Focus: Purity
Monu should be an excellent teacher. She can whip up the poisons, they can work on cleansing them.

> Focus: Grace
Interesting. If he can figure out a dao of nobility, I’d laugh.

> Focus: Necromancy!?
Oh god. If we can get her to play disciple to asshole spirit jumper that’d be amazing.

All the martial folks should appreciate the book on fighting techniques for all types of beasts and man.
>>
>>5570100
>Bright Spring

>Prepare a vessel to transfer it into, so you don't have to fight it (Magic/knowledge trial DC 75)
It's not the easy way, but perhaps we'll scrounge extra info by this method.
>>
>>5570100
They're novices so complete judgements can be set aside for now, but I am ambivalent about their overall composition. Lots of natural fighters is good, but we might want to aid those currently only focused on longevity or broad strokes with greater breadth or depth, ofc only what's suited to them. It's fortunate we've been left open to helping them pick cultivation methods.

Perhaps pillaging the tomb library for what'll serve them well and give them the extra weird edge to their dao that makes heretics like us legitimate threats to our "betters."

Houmogui's early martial focus of grappling would, of what we currently have, be best complimented with Blood Qi\Lifeforce Qi related techniques. Most of our own are highly effective close-range/contact techniques, and if they sync with it well they'll be combining it with natural flight abilities and that's scary. As well we know, this also makes a martial fighter able to be a mobile healer. Might be hard to drum that second half into them, but worthy. And already being a blood drinking Bat ofc as another anon pointed out before.

Báifěnchì... extremely interesting. Infinitely adorable. Necromancy as a starting proclivity means they have basically as many options as we did, minus the transient spirit roots. They'll need to explore battlefields at some point, but our tombs would be their safest start.

Zhurou is obviously going for a poise/badass sidestep build. I'd hesitate to give him Mountain Shattering Hammer or anything like it. While useful, if he's going to focus on grace he might be strengthened best by a soft martial art. Lightning Messenger is redirection/spell focused, but I think we should be patient with him and encourage/challenge his philosophy.
His unique perspective has him believing in nobility and beasts as one, and as far as I can tell that's largely been a unique awareness to us and Yinying by circumstantial/fated heritage. However, he acquired it by having lived as royally as a pig can. A truly unique lifestyle among our students, which could yield something more esoteric.

Yinying's clearly aiming to be an honorable green flavored assassin of some kind, if he leans into his name. A dao favoring speed & stealth feels obvious. Concerned he's made his initial selection purely to serve us better, but time will tell. A nice sentiment but I doubt we want him limiting himself for servitude's sake. That said, hyper focuses can have their truly unique facets too.

But much like Jiangliehuo, Sēnlín Zhérén, Mao Yue, Niu, Wang, and Yòuzǎiwáng, their focuses are initially broad enough we should examine their roots in detail before giving them a direction.

Bo can be Bo. A heretical brawling art isn't something we've found. I wouldn't want to marry him into one of our current laws, though. A real blank slate student is a rare commodity... for experiments. The helpful non-tortuous kind.

>>5570335
Yes to all of that.
>>
>>5570493
Zhorou the horned dignifiend pig + lightning messanger arts

We can make him a Quilin!

Also baifenchi.. wasn't there an exorcist art about lanterns?

Memes aside might be good to let them find their footing before giving them a path to follow, let them see and consult their seniors and decide then on what to do.
Good idea to tap into the catacombs, hoping that some manuals remain.
Besides it's high time we extend our rule and conquest the last stronghold of ghosts.
>>
>>5570615
>wasn't there an exorcist art about lanterns?
That's the one Ping and Huili follow

Also, I still think that Zhurou should learn or develop a Dao with Earth Qi. When I read Grace that's something associated with water and air, but I doubt he has natural affinity to that, maybe he's also inclined to Wood maybe

The point is that, my theory that maybe Zhurou could be our default arquitect could still work. With his focus on nobility and etiquette, maybe he can develop a way to mold rock and stones like they're clay and make some wonderful structures, and that can still develop to a Dao of Etiquette. After all, pigs are usally portrayed as rude and dirty creatures when they're actually really clean, and it could be poetic that a pig is extremly well manered and cordial, and the rock being crude and strict, and while the pig has those tags or being dirty he can still act regal and honorable and at the same time molding the neverchanging Rock into beautiful works of art, and both the Pig and the Rock denying how people in general percieve them
>>
>>5570493
Very good point. We've got that many students I may need to turn back on my stance of not including them in the pastebin.

Still, they all rest at level 2 of 8, while our best is level 8 [Fequing] and 7 [Fu]
>>
>>5570100
>Bright Spring
>Prepare a vessel to transfer it into, so you don't have to fight it (Magic/knowledge trial DC 75)
>>
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2.04 MB
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Ending the vote now, tallying the result.

Frogs Name
_
Bright Spring:8

Murky Gem:1

Bright venom:1

Chirping Opal:1

Bubble Chorus:1
_

What do do with the possessing devil
_
Prepare a vessel to transfer it into, so you don't have to fight it:8

Seal a chamber and have Ping rip it out of him, and if it doesn't submit immediately, beat the hell out of it with Monu and Ping:3

Near landslide victory for Bright Spring and Preparing a vessel! Fun, fun!

Update will arrive shortly and bring the first 2d100 roll we've had in a while, how exciting.

>>5570196
I will make an effort to

>>5570673
Beautifully put.
>>
The ceremony you've planned for frog, though he won't be known as that for much longer is mostly austere, simple and plain, without much pomp or revelry, since you feel that the boy's own happiness will provide enough color to the occasion without the need for excessive decorating or careful planning. And more than anything else, that such distractions might soil his memory of when he was presented with his proper name, which should be a gift greater than any other and one that would only be diminished if it was given after an extravagant party with complicated protocol and traditions to adhere to. So instead, with a tail dipped into ink, you paint a white cotton banner to present to the sparkling eyed youth. And as you write his name, having already chosen what it will be, you remember how you met him in that pure spring with the village of singing frogs and he approached you with child like innocence and open hearted curiosity. As you swish your tail, you remember why you're gathering beasts to begin with as without your intervention, he would've been hunted down for his beast core despite having done no wrongdoings and harming no one at all in his short life!

The first part of his name, the surname you're giving to him, is something of a play on words and quite ostentatious, but you feel the cheerful little tike deserves such a proud name! Cànlàn, the name he will give to his descendants should he sire any or choose to adopt his students into his family, should he take on disciples of his own some day, is spelled with the characters 灿烂, the first half meaning bright and the second meaning many things, including rotten, but when they come together they mean glittering, brilliant, splendid! You had so many words to choose for the Bright part of his name, but you chose this one because the fact it has the character for rotten, when the first Canlan can purify and cleanse waters with his presence alone.

Well it amused you and you thought it clever.

However, his personal name, means Spring. Yuánquán, spelt using the characters 源泉. The first meaning origin or root, and the second meaning spring. You promised him two names, and that is what you'll be giving him

Hence, he shall be known, and you have written Canlan Yuanquan ( 灿烂 源泉, Bright Spring) elegantly and proudly, with the same red ink you use for your talisman, mixed with a bit of your own blood and Yuanquan's as well, since even though you wanted his naming ceremony to be a brief affair as the daughter of a witch you couldn't help but to put a little bit of ritual into the affair.

He is sat atop the golden lotus altar, and looks like he about to burst from the anticipation of getting a name like all of his peers. And it is with great pride and dignity that you walk up to him, with the rolled banner in his mouth, and present it to him atop the gold lotus.
cont
>>
You sit with him for awhile, explaining the meaning of both his surname and personal name, and that of the characters you used to write it and see his Amethyst eyes sparkle with understanding and glee as he realizes just how fine of a name he has been gifted. And you couldn't help but to be endeared when he began to repeat his name, louder and louder, in that rural dialect of his and that croaking accent he spoke with.

"Canlan Yuanquan! I am Canlan Yuanquan! Ribbit!" He declared, jewel like eyes narrowed and you were certain he'd be crying if frogs could shed tears. He holds out the piece of cloth painted with his new name proudly as if it were a token handed to him by the emperor himself er...well if the emperor were still alive that was. You could've gotten his soul out of the place you've caged it to present him his name, if you wanted this ceremony to be anything more than the public honoring of a student by their teacher.

"Elder sister has given me a wonderful name! Now everyone I meet will know who I am and if they're clever like my teacher, know what I am like! Ribbit Ribbit!' He cries out, croaking a song as Monu looks away, wiping a tear from her cheek as Fu and the other disciples with hands begin clapping them as their junior hops around, no longer able to contain his excitement.

"A wonderful name, for a polite young gentleman" Zhurou remarks
"Its fitting, and he seems to like it, so its a good name" Houmogui says, hiding her eyes as it is clear she is crying"
"Better than mine" Fu chuckles
"Oh don't say that" Lanfen scolds
"I wish I could see his smiling face" Hong sighs
"Sounds like an art name" Qinxin said, glancing at Ping
"There is an art when one writes an art name for themselves, it is the same when one is granted to them by a teacher" Ping replies, nodding his head
"Remember when you thought she was a demon" Feiqing cackles
"Hrrrrn" Lei grunts
"At least we have something to call him besides frog" Qiang said with a shrug
"It was getting awkward" Liu agrees
"I wish I had waited to name myself, can't help but feel jealous of my martial brother" Yinying sighs wistisfully
"Did you really need to wake me up for this? He would've told me anyways" Chuandapo yawns
"I should name my brothers and sisters" Huili snorted
"You did an excellent job remembering the time of the ceremony, Chuandapo" Siwang huffs, as he picks a few feathers from his chest
"How lively" Yujijiao says sadly
"Am I getting more names?" Jiangliehuo asked Houmogui, who he had latched onto as an older sibling
"A beautiful ceremony" Senlin Zhenren says "the boy deserved to be given such high honors"
"What a poetic name! Rot in Bright springs" Baifenchi giggled darkly "
"Eh? where's the rot in his name?" Yòuzǎiwáng asked her
"Oh my, what a cute creature" Mao Yue said, clapping still
"He reminds me of my nephew" Niu said wistfully
"I guess not all demonic beasts are scary" Wang Wencheng said nervously
"Hey, Fu! Just realized we both have short names" Bo laughed
>>
>>5571266

"Hah, if only my Xuebai was met with such kindness" Monu says quietly to herself, as you, her and Ping slip away from the festivities starting as Yuanquan is surrounded by his fellow disciples and congratulated by them, one by one. Lei took a moment to catch on that he was needed as well, despite Ping motioning for him to follow the three of you three times. He followed on the fourth, slipping out of the crowd of your students and sprinting to catch up.

"The past cannot be undone, grandmother Monu" Ping sighed, running his fingers over his prayer beads of teeth and finger bones "We can only try to shape the future to be better. I just hope we all emerge from this trial to come unscathed"

"It will be quite a challenge" Monu said with a sneer and a cackle, curling his tongue around her lit, silver pipe "Its been so long since I got to let loose, being an old hag as I was"

"If we're lucky, they're be no fight beyond ripping the freeloader out of Lei's body" You say sharply, flicking your tail clean of any ink that has dried to it "I trust you to prepare the ritual circle well? While I make the vessel to contain the demon"

"Of course! You can count on your mother" Monu said, slapping you on the back "Wouldn't want a handsome face like Lei's to get messed up or end up belonging to a corpse"

"I...am confident I will not fail either. I refuse to allow my sworn brother to come to harm. I shall banish the evil within him" Ping said confidently "Should I fail, I might as well cut off one of my arms"

"Oh? If you do, can I ferment it?" she giggled, plucking her pipe from her lips

"It..it was a metaphor" Ping says nervously "As, Lei is my brother, it would be like losing an arm"

"Damn" Monu sighed, with a flippant shrug of her shoulders "and here I was hoping I'd have more flesh to add to the pots"

Ping swallowed hard, but you and your mother laughed. Lei tried to join, in his own way

roll 2d100. First roll. Best of four, to prepare the vessel. Second roll, Best of three, for Ping to exorcise Lei
>>
Rolled 97, 72 = 169 (2d100)

>>5571270
I BELIEVE, BELIEVE IN STEEEEEEEEEEEEVE
>>
>>5571273
STEVE, YOU BEAUTIFUL BASTARD!
20 OVER AND 10 OVER!

The rest is just crit fishing.
>>
>>5571275
Still gonna need the rolls thou
>>
Rolled 18, 25 = 43 (2d100)

>>5571270
>>
>>5571310
I know, but now we've no need to fear the rolls. Only a dreaded one or a beloved hundred.
>>
Rolled 95, 77 = 172 (2d100)

>>5571270
>>
Rolled 65 (1d100)

>>5571270
>>
97 and 77. That's pretty nice and seveny
>>
Rolled 97 (1d100)

>>5571270
We are missing one roll
I love Bright Springs, he is cute
>>
>>5571364
Oh wait, we weren't missing a roll, since the second was bo3, bo4
It's funny how we got another 97 though
>>
Fell asleep there for a little bit, my bad.

>>5571340
Great success and Good success.

Update will arrive shortly
>>
You need to venture into the catacombs to find a suitable container for the devil within poor, tongueless Lei. Luckily you inherited the services of several sagely spirits from you silver taloned predecessors, some of them are in the pots, chests and other prisons you collected to contain those who clung to the old rule of the shallows of the crypts, but many more saw that within you was a sea of wisdom and insight deeper than that pathetic puddle of wit that ghoul possess and were all to happy to lend their knowledge cultivated throughout their life and after it to you whenever you demand them to. And their knowledge is vast. The forgotten king had an interest in the occult and esoteric and sought all manner of forbidden wells of power and wisdom to sup from. Before of course, a god dropped a mountain atop him and his whole army and all of the heretical texts and apostate treasures they had gathered for his benefit. One day, they shall all be yours by right of conquest or if the forgotten king is smarter than his dogs, willing submission.

Of course, you had already alerted these dead sages and scholars to gather all the materials you needed and to gather in your cultivation chamber. Where you shall drain them of the Yin Qi forming their ghostly forms, reducing them to ghost lights for a time, not long of course considering how deeply saturated the catacombs are with ghostly essence and spiritual energies so no harm will be done to them. In fact they even volunteered to serve as fuel for you creation of the vessel, the design of which you had actually improved from their initial suggestions as you have educated yourself on the matter of spirit sealing vessels and consider yourself well informed on the matter. After all, you used similar tools to trap their fellows and former masters.

First, the red jade box you had them procure, is lined with the mystical salve made of a mixture bone ash, blood and grave soil imbued with your own potent spiritual energy combined with that of your assistants. This creates the spirit trapping salve, which will serve as the foundation for the vessel's sealing qualities. Then, you add a layer of talismans marked with prayers and wetted with a holy man's blood. Ping donated that particular ingredient. These are layered on the inner and outer walls of the box, hiding away its oily sheen and marvelous, deep red color. Then, before closing the box, you drip a few drops of Harmonious Five elements spring water. Then, you apply thicker talismans, made with a high quality paper, leaving them stuck to the bottom of the box but not the lid. Once they are stuck to the lid, the box will be sealed and anything sucked into it will be trapped.

These are the same talismans that Ping make for the lesser prisons you made for the ghosts you trapped during your first conquest of the tombs, bearing the characters of death, prison and eternity. They're the finishing touch to the vessel and with them in place, it is done
Cont
>>
>>5571503

The ghosts, soothed by your draining of their excess and then some of ghostly Qi, float away the moment they are no longer lead, lazily drifting through the air, happy to have been of use to you.

Then, with jade box in hand, you're ready to begin Lei's exorcism at long last. And the scene that greets you when you present Monu and Ping with your masterpiece looks more like a cult's sacrifice than an exorcism. Lei is laid out on a stone table, nude except for a pair of short, butterfly wing thin pants. He is chained to the table, with carmine ink painted all over him in numerous mystical and ritual sigils and diagrams. You recognize nearly all of them, the only one unknown to you is the one drawn on his forehead. He is remarkably calm, despite having Ping standing over him, wearing half a score and dressed like some kind of barbaric shaman. It might be because his eyes are focused elsewhere, namely Monu's chest as she leans over his head, muttering mantras and painting more and more intricate designs and caligraphy, adding to the thousand diagrams drawn all over him.

"Is the vessel ready?" She asks, nearly smothering him as she leans over him, looking at the small seal smother box in your hands

"What do you think" You smugly reply, proudly lifting up the lid of the palm sized box "Its some of my finest work"

"I can tell, a true treasure. A shame we have to use it, we could've caught quite the powerful monster with that" She says proudly, smacking Lei on his forehead, smearing the characters of the diagram drawn on it "Ping! are you prepared? You'll only get one shot at this, after the demon inside him will be prepared and if you aren't able to cleanly pull it out of him he'll be further crippled, if not killed. I know you two are close, so I want you to be certain, Not to mention I'd miss the mute something terrible"

"As would I, there is no shame in holding off his treatment to be certain he'll survive it" You, placing a hand on Ping's shoulder, feeling that he is trembling, his eyes bulging and twitching as he asks himself if he is truly strong enough to cure Lei of his curse "If you aren't strong enough as you are now, I'm certain it won't take you long to become mighty enough to rip the bastard out in one clean pull"

"Might not even take a year!" Monu shouts happily

"Sect-Head, I am ready. With both my own techniques and those of the Night Lantern Sutra, I am positive I will be able to relive Brother Lei of the parasite sealing his meridians" He says, closing his eyes and opening them again, conviction burning within them like a dark blaze "I've dealt with hungry ghosts, poltergeist, nature spirits and all other kinds of hauntings. I've ended the possession of dozens and become renowned for my work as an exorcist. You call me strong but..."

He smiled and stretched out his cursed arm, admiring its pale, black veined skin.
Cont
>>
>>5571506

"I am not strong enough to force out his passenger with brute strength alone" He says, wrapping his prayer beads tightly around his wrist, winding them between his fingers "However, I am skilled enough to remove them through skill alone"

"I'll trust your judgement Ping, you're smart and know yourself better than I ever could" You say, feeling that he is no longer trembling, but rather has become straight back and filled with an unconquerable resolve "But, I do know you seem as certain of yourself as you were in that cave during that storm"

"When I stopped fooling myself and opened my eyes to you for the first time" he says fondly

"Your finest hour" You say respectfully "Draw on the man you were then, his convictions, courage and selfless virtue, and tear that fucker out of Lei"

"On the count of three" He says, bowing his head "Can we get something for him to bite on, this arm of mine is many things, but gentle it is not"

Monu nods, and sticks her pipe in his mouth

"Don't worry about denting it" She says, ruffling Lei's hair as sweat begins to bead down his forehead to soak into his mustache

"Nrrrrrhhrr" He whimpers, reaching out with his hand, not so silently pleading for comfort. You kneel beside him, and grab hold of his hand, pressing it against your chest and locking his eyes with your own

"You're going to be okay" You whisper soothingly in his ear, supporting and trying to get him to relax and calm down by acting as an anchor he can trust to hold onto. But with your other hand, you hold the open box.

"One" Ping says stepping in front of him, pulling his cursed arm back with an open palm, measuring where he'll have to strike and checking it. Its just above his bellybutton, where his lower dantian is located

"Two" He says, lowering it just above his target, before taking in a deep breath through his nose and pulling it back, using his normal arm to grab hold of the table to steady himself. Lei cries out, eyes bulging open as he clenches your hand, shaking his head and squirming, more panicked than you've ever seen him before, even when you first met him when he was about to be burned alive!

"THREE!" Ping roars, black Qi wreathing his arm like ink drawings of fire, he slams his palm flat on Lei's belly and clenches it into a fist. You see a red mass gather in his hand and he pulls himself back, nearly falling backwards as the red mass becomes a bramble of red light, forming a fanged shadow that surrounds and wraps itself around Ping's ghost arm. Ping's face is shadowed, become a demonic mask as he bares his teeth and clenches his jaw, sweating pouring down him as the sleeve of his robe are torn to tatters from the mere presence of the demon in his hand. He twists on his heel, and opens his hand as he slams it over the top of the box. Lei has fainted, and lays still on the table, having lifted up and then fallen as his sworn brother grabbed and then yanked the devil that had been inside of him for who knows how long.
>>
>>5571508

Ping struggles to close the box, and it takes you and Monu pressing both of your own hands on the box after you drop it to the ground to close it. Then, together, the three of you in perfect synch perform the hand sign to to complete the sealing spell. The box shakes, dances and leaps into the air, before falling still, glowing with an unearthly blood red light.

The moment it falls still, you look to Lei, your heart pounding and mind blank except for worry and fear that he might have...a cool sense of relief washes over your mind like a wave as you see his chest slowly rise up and fall again

"he's alive!" You cry out, some how on your knees and wiping tears that have somehow gotten onto your cheeks

"The world isn't so cruel" Ping says, panting and sounding exhausted

"That was fun" Monu says, wiping her brow "Shame it won't do anything about his lack of a tongue....Wait, why is he a"

"Foundation establishment!?" You roar, leaping to your feet and shaking him by his shoulders "Wake up you mute bastard! Why didn't you tell us you were already a..."

His eyelids struggle open, as if they were held down by a heavy weight. He looks at you confused, and shrugs

"You..you didn't know?" You ask. He shook his head

"Then why did you keep this secret from us, huh?" Monu asked, jabbing her nail in his cheek

He moves his lips, desperately trying to speak, and you realize he is mouth words

"Amnesia?" You ask, slumping down and dropping him.

"Mhmm!" He grunts "Aaah aunh reehmmmbuh"

"From how far back?" Ping asks between tired, sucking breathes

Lei frowned, and held out his hands, asking for a brush and ink.

He writes on his own bare chest "My first memory is waking up in a burnt village, blood on my hands and corpses around me. How I ended up there, or why I was there, I can't remember, nor anything before that"

"You didn't tell me?" His sworn brother asks, sounding deeply hurt

"You know how you used to be" Lei writes, after quickly brushing his chest off before shooting Ping a judging look "I was hoping that getting that thing out of me would"

He drops the brush, eyes going wide as if he had remembered something suddenly. Oh you have to be kidding!

"You just remembered!" You shout, wanting to strangle him. He nods, as he tries to pry your fingers off his throat.

"Well?" Ping asks curiously, while Monu rubs her chin.

"I figured it out" She says coldly, jabbing her pipe at Lie "You put that demon in you, didn't you"

Lei looks away. Monu sighs through her teeth.

"You're a cultist, and you were the one who made all those corpses" She accuses. Lei shakes his head

"Then why?" Ping asks, not accusingly or even angry, just confused

He looks to you and smiles. Just like his ancestor in hell. Who was also a cultivator. And then it clicks

"Family tradition. He comes from a line of heretics, is that right?" you ask. Lei nods. Monu frowns, looking grumpy that you were right and she was wrong
Cont
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>>5571509

"You were always a heretic" Ping says, laughing in the ridiculousness of this situation "Oh, well, aren't I a hypocrite! Naming an actual demon worship my brother when I called the one who'd become my master a demon without knowing the true contents of her heart! What a fool I am"

"So" Monu says quickly, pushing Ping away, pointing a finger at Lei "you put that demon in you to become stronger! to feed off its Qi! But you fucked up!"

Lei nods

"YES!" Monu cheers, pumping her fist in triumph

"Mother..." you say weakly as she grins ear to ear

Ping eyes narrow

"To defend your fellow cultists. Not all of them were your kinsmen, were they" He says slowly, picking up on his brother's body language easier than you or Monu. Lei nodded.

"No wonder you got along with me easily" You say, realizing what Ping is implying "You've killed cultivators before. The enemy of mine enemy is my friend"

He gives an enthusiastic thumbs up

"Guess we know why he acted like a child so often, he was as innocent as one without his memories" Monu said, almost wistfully "Wonder how he'll act now"

Lei shook his head and his hands, dissuading the notion entirely.

"Eh? you were always like this?" Ping asks incredulously

He just smiles

Red Jade Box: Sealed demon Acquired
Lei has returned to the Foundation Establishment stage, Rank 1. He practices a demonic cultivation law (Currently unknown), Focuses: Meridian Sealing and Qi Stealing

What do you do now that Lei is cured, Huanliuxue?

>have him record all he knows of his cultivation method in a manual.

>Interrogate the demon, and ask exactly what happened, since Lei...well asking him is a pain in the ass.

>Look over the jade slip Fu was given.

>Decide that since Lei is actually quite strong, that now is the best time to hunt down Jingyu, bringing him, Ping and Monu with you.

>Write in

Juniors. I shall admit. I've been DYING to drop this reveal since you picked up Ping, Feiqing and Lei back in the 2nd thread.
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>>5571513
>Interrogate the demon, and ask exactly what happened, since Lei...well asking him is a pain in the ass.
>have him record all he knows of his cultivation method in a manual.
>Tell Lei about the ferry keeper that looked like him in hell.
I don't think it's that much of a reveal since we found a potential ancestor of Lei's
>>
>>5571513
>Decide that since Lei is actually quite strong, that now is the best time to hunt down Jingyu, bringing him, Ping and Monu with you.
>>
>>5571513
FOUNDATION ESTABLISHMENT?!?!?!

You WHAT?! Lei! My boy! My beautiful pervy boy!
First things first.

>Record his shit in a manual
You WILL donate these techniques to the sect.
>Interrogate the demon
We need to figure out who we have in this box, what he's worth and who to toss away with.

Grandfather how much longer is that throne expected to take?
If months then
>Decide that since they are quite strong, Now is the time to hunt down Jingyu.

Because while I wanted to go after them after cultivation time, They are already getting stronger.

>Tell Lei about his ancestor
We don't know much, but why not.

>>5571519
Speak for yourself bud, I didn't think he'd be foundation establishment. I just thought that he would have some super potential since that's the only way to keep up with his brothers.
>>
>>5571524
To be honest I was expecting him to be a cultivator already, only one at Qi Condensation instead of foundation.
>>
>>5571513
LET'S GOOOOOO

Guys, we already have TWO disciples that bound demons and ghosts to their bodies for cultivation, Fu and Lei. If we put them or see how they develop, then we could actually make a Dao that's just a Stand, bounding ghost, demons or any kind of spirits in a possesion.

>>5571519
+1

I honestly do want to go and search for Jingyu, but because we know now that Lei it's a Cultivator, we still don't know what Dao does he have, or what kind of Cultivation he has. If Grandfather can slip us some information on the next update of the abilities that Lei has and there's no necessity to spend days trying to figure it out (Or an action to do so), I say maybe go and actually hunt Jingyu.

Also damn, bounding an spirit to yourself and feed from their Qi? That shit is metal as fuck.
>>
>>5571540
>>5571532
Also gents, I know we are waiting for the throne to be finished, but we are level 4 of foundation establishment. half way through which is good, but we really do want to advance by absolute leaps and bounds when we next sit down to meditate. Teachers should not be overtaken by their students.
>>
>>5571568
Yeah, you're right. I don't think that Feiqing is going to have the throne in the next couple of days, so we still have time to keep teaching our students and also maybe pay a visit to the Geges with some of our bestial students.

Some people were saying about bringing them, but they have their own subjects and stuff to do in their side. So maybe giving them a visit, bringing some books that helps them for cultivation and maybe helping them to prepare some special room for cultivation might be enough for them to develop by their own and still keeping tabs with them.
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>>5571573
Yeah, where they are is safe, thankfully.

But when we are next free, we can go and visit and make a field trip of it. It's a venerable safe haven for magical beasts in those wilds, and the stronger we get the girls, the more fortified a fall back location we can have.
though they will need to forgive us our long abscences, the path to immortality is one with many concerns.
>>
I wonder if we could convince the demon to join us so we can use it to strengthen Lei like he originally wanted too
>>
>>5571540
I think there was a suggestion of getting snek and Lei to work together to do something like that.
The details have changed though.
>>5571568
Yeah, I want to cultivate first. If we try to recruit fox sis and she is stronger then us personally, she might not respect us enough to behave. At least Monu and most of our student have should be enough to stop any usurpation attempt (except from Huili, now that he has a backbone)
>>
>>5571580
Yuji and Lei? Maybe, but I see snek daughter to make a better pair with Fu. Yuji is a ghost and has a grudge against the Ling Ogress.

But what i'm worried about this is that we don't know if Yuji will still be able to interact and act without Fu, or if she's going to just morph into Fu gigant repertoire of Ghosts.
>>
>>5571590
We have moth girl now. Necromancy is one viable solution to Yuji’s problems.
>>
>>5571594
She works better as a testbed for the ghostly cultivation method. Once we get her along the path, any who come after her can be taught by her.
>>
>>5571509
>it takes you and Monu pressing both of your own hands on the box after you drop it to the ground to close it
Holy shit what a strong demon.

>>5571513
Holy shit what a strong Lei. Binding demons to your own dantian to steal their Qi? Badass.

>Interrogate the demon, and ask exactly what happened, since Lei...well asking him is a pain in the ass.
>have him record all he knows of his cultivation method in a manual.

>write-in
Maybe we could fix Lei's tongue now that we know he can take the trial of being our second restoration experiment, and there won't be any demonic interference to our Blood Qi manipulation?

>>5571579
A harmonious relationship instead of enslavement? Or giving it the deal of being able to defy the heavens alongside us? Sounds fun to try.

Even if it doesn't work out it we can still follow through with the thematically appropriate act of giving Lei the support/assist he needs to conquer it himself as he'd originally tried, under a more controlled and magick'd up environment. In that context we can frame our argument as "work alongside us or get dominated inevitably", though we already know it's of a murderous sort of spirit.
>>
>>5571625
Yeah those options could both work and if not we can point that being inside Lei's body and actually affecting the outside world is bound to be more interesting than being inside that box
>>
>>5571625
>>5571694
I'm not sure, unless we can actually put a demon and see it and actually work with our Demon Encyclopedia to know how much trust worthy they are.

Remember that the Crow King himself said that he would betray us if we let him live, and the Demon and Lei we're basically in prison, Lei with amnesia and the Demon inside Lei for Heaven's know how much.

I say that maybe if we can drag Lei to Hell and let him seek for a Demon partner instead of taking one as a prisoner
>>
>>5571762
I agree, we passed over the chance of having a loyal demon with the egg. No need to get one that is going to be understandably pissed about the attempt of being trapped and drained of qi.
>>
>>5571513
>>have him record all he knows of his cultivation method in a manual.
>Decide that since Lei is actually quite strong, that now is the best time to hunt down Jingyu, bringing him, Ping and Monu with you.
Though, Monu may not like it, if it is Xuebei we have a familial duty to tend to her.
>>
>>5571513
>>5572007
+1
Also, should we take the book that is our chronicle with us? It seems like the sort of thing that could be used to prove how true our statements are as it should be recording our thoughts as well as our actions.
>>
>>5572052
Idk about the book, I don't see how it can work... Unless there are some pages where it says how Monu told us their story and prove we talk seriously
>>
>>5572163
Basically that. If she doubts our sincerity, there’s examples to prove that no, we really do see her as our elder sister and rage at the injustice she has been dealt.

There’s too much in that book for it to be fabricated. She should be able to recognize that.
>>
>>5572177
Then I guess it's ok.
>>
>>5571513
>have him record all he knows of his cultivation method in a manual.
Whenever convenient.
>Talk more at length with Lei, tell him of his ancestor in hell. Heal his tongue and have him recount his memories as well as making the occasional question to the demon etc.
Lots of stuff but it's all important.
>Decide that since Lei is actually quite strong, that now is the best time to hunt down Jingyu, bringing him, Ping and Monu with you.
And this is the next task we shall see to, family business.
>>
>>5571513
>have him record all he knows of his cultivation method in a manual.
>Interrogate the demon, and ask exactly what happened, since Lei...well asking him is a pain in the ass.
I want to hold off on chasing Jingyu until we know how long it’ll take for Feiqing to finish the throne
>>
>>5571513


>>have him record all he knows of his cultivation method in a manual.
Not only for our school but also for ourselves! The best teachers are those willing to learn from their students. It might synergize nicely with our most versatile technique: Enmity Incarnation.

Speaking of which: there are further ways, this ability might be further enhanced. One might be adapting Fu's cultivation method and the other would be to strengthen the channelled individuals: break Monu's bottleneck, help Fu being Fu and introduce the constantly angry Ghost who's name I forgot into methodical cultivation.
>>
Something I don’t think people have commented on: We should train Fu while wearing his own grudge. I don’t know if he has the “grudges from our back” technique like we discovered, and fighting himself will give him insights into the strengths and flaws of his own style from the perspective of the enemy.
>>
Here's a tally

>Votes - 10
nrgG1RcC
nBVtJOwA
1u9x17S2
pYIy8ll8
HWtqfN5G
oKzyjg0/
aLZIAV+F
HhUpbQCY
7UgGYwfH
31s0Orb1

>Interrogate - 5 (6?)
nrgG1RcC
1u9x17S2
pYIy8ll8
HWtqfN5G
7UgGYwfH
HhUpbQCY (?)

>Manual - 8
nrgG1RcC
1u9x17S2
pYIy8ll8
oKzyjg0/
aLZIAV+F
HhUpbQCY
7UgGYwfH
31s0Orb1

>Ancestor - 4
nrgG1RcC
1u9x17S2
pYIy8ll8
HhUpbQCY

>Hunt - 3 (5?)
nBVtJOwA
1u9x17S2 (?)
oKzyjg0/
aLZIAV+F
7UgGYwfH (?)

>Heal - 3
HWtqfN5G
HhUpbQCY
nrgG1RcC


Put a ? on anons' vote because it was conditional on how long the throne would take. Also, one of them was just talked about instead of a vote, but i try to be fair.
Shame that the healing Lei's tongue write-in is getting that many votes, seems to be something that would be worth a try, unless it's part of his cultivation method.
>>
>>5574116
isn't, not is
Also I counted this anons' vote for healing, ancestor and interrogate all at once
>>5572253
>>
>>5574116
Ah, I missed the tongue write-in. Found it now, it wasn’t greentexted when I posted so I skimmed over it. Seems I missed the later votes with it too.

>>5571513
>>5572052
I’ll add
>Talk more at length with Lei, tell him of his ancestor in hell. Heal his tongue and have him recount his memories as well as making the occasional question to the demon etc.
to my vote.

I’d greentext my book vote, but I assume that’s coming with us by default in the same bottomless pouch as all our pills and such.
>>
>>5574159
>I’d greentext my book vote
I knew I had forgotten to count something
But as far as mistakes goes, it's not that bad, because like you just said, we probably are already carrying it.
>>
Ending the vote now, tallying the result. Sorry for making you wait over the weekend.

Interrogate the demon, and ask exactly what happened, since Lei...well asking him is a pain in the ass.:5

have him record all he knows of his cultivation method in a manual.:9

Tell Lei about the ferry keeper that looked like him in hell.:5

Decide that since Lei is actually quite strong, that now is the best time to hunt down Jingyu, bringing him, Ping and Monu with you.:4
-Make sure to take Huanliuxue's scripture with you: 1

Try to regenerate Lei's tongue:4

So You'll order Lei to record his Cultivation knowledge, the techniques and methods of the law he follows, as well as any insights he has earned, But not before telling him of his ancestor in hell.

Then you will interrogate the demon that he had sealed inside himself.

Update will arrive shortly

>>5574116
Junior is diligent as always! You are deserving of ten praises!
>>
"You know, you don't have to fret about him like his wife, Ping" You remark dully, resting your chin on your paw as Ping practically flutters around Lei, acting as if he were made of glass as the three of you walk along one of the many streams flowing out of the Harmonious five elements spiring deeper into your temple. You think this one actually feeds into one of your spirit grass gardens, eventually. Lei chuckles, throwing a strong arm around Ping's neck and giving a thumbs up and judging from how the white haired young man starts, also grabs his ass.

Ping swings his cursed arm around, grabbing for Lei's face, but he just ducks under him and makes a show of silently laughing at him, hopping between his feet and putting his hand to the huanliuxue mask he wears like a woman trying to be polite and hide her tittering. You roll your eyes and get up, having decided to take a short rest on the cool stone floor as Ping was busying himself checking Lei over for any signs of weakness or oddities in the flow of his Qi and internal energy.

"Bastard!' He barks, as Lei dodges his following chops and grabs with ease, hopping backwards on one foot all while still mocking him with his silent laughter "Look what you've done, master, you've given the fool a new game to play! When I! his loyal sworn brother had only just been worried for his well being! Now he shall never stop his mockery"

"Isn't that how siblings are supposed to act?" you cackle as Ping sighs through his teeth and folds his arm, deciding their is more dignity in ignoring Lei's playfulness than there is in seeking revenge against it, though it is clear his antics have wounded his pride.

"Hmmph, I suppose" Ping says with a roll of his eyes "While I'm glad he's energetic and more lively than ever, I hope he calms himself soon, or else I will show him a novice of Qi Condensation can beat a foundation establishment cultivator"

"If you're going to fight, do it outside" You drawl, shaking your head and flicking your tail as you walk in front of Ping, as Lei continues his spritely, childish skipping and hopping. You think he's trying to taunt Ping into trying to hit him, or he's just forgotten why he was doing it to begin with and just finds it fun. You can't tell, since it is his habit to wear some kind of mask more often than not. But, watching his mischief, you can't help but be reminded of his ancestor you met twice in hell. He also wore a mask. Is that some kind of shared family eccentricity? Or is that odd habit of theirs just one hell of a coincidence. Both of them were also mute. And Lei hasn't ever said how he lost his tongue. Though his ancestor was mute because his mouth was sewn shut so what's up with that?!

Maybe Lei will know, now that his memories have returned to him? Its worth a shot. The man might like the mess around and act like an absolute fool, but he wouldn't dare refuse to answer you. Of course, you're assuming he knows he even has an ancestor in hell.
Cont
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>>5575526

Well its worth a shot to tell him, if he recognizes him, you might be able to start to unravel the many mysteries surrounding your odd disciple.

"Oi! Lei!" You shout, causing the hopping idiot to stumble back, waving his arms to try to maintain his balance, but he can't stop his fall once it has started and he falls ass first into the stream. Ping laughs, and you have to struggle not to join him.

"That's what you deserve for acting the fool, brother" Ping sneers, wagging a pale finger as Lei stares up at the ceiling, not caring to lift himself out of the water even as his robes get more and more soaked through.

"He might have, but that's besides the point, I have something to tell him" You say as you walk up to him and stare down at him "Lei?"

He nods to show he is listening, his eyes looking through his mask up into your own with an innocent curiosity as the springs waters wash over him

"I found someone who looked remarkably like you in hell. He has the same face as you, wears a mask like you and is a mute like you. He is also a heretical cultivator, like you turned out to be" You say seriously so he'll understand the gravity of the question and the pressing weight of your curiosity "I have every reason to think he is a relative of yours, if not an ancestor"

Lei stands, water dripping from his sleeves and hair and he marches with as much dignity as a man in soggy robes can have, and begins using his wetted hands to write on the stone wall of the tunnel.

"I've never heard of this before" Ping says, watching as Lei writes his response with water

"Qiang knew, she was with me the last time we met him" You say "Didn't think it mattered enough to gossip about it, it was just a curiosity, you see"

"Oh! He actually knows who you're talking about!" Ping gasps, and you plod forward, pushing past him to see what Lei has written.

"It was tradition for the heir of my clan to render themselves mute" You read as Lei steps back and sticks out his stump of a tongue, poking and prodding at it "So we wouldn't reveal our inherited arts and secret techniques if we were captured by our enemies. I guess you met one of my predecessors, how was his voice sealed, madam? "

"Unexpectedly polite" Ping remarks, nodding as you frown and glance back at Lei, who is already scooping more water into his hands to write with

"Sewn shut. Though at the time I thought that was because he had been punished for his heresy, how laudable it is you both willingly silenced yourselves just for the sake of secrecy. It is a shame you seem to be the sole survivor of the sect that raised you, Lei" You say, your respect for that bit of self sacrifice evident in the manner of which you speak and the featheriness of your voice when you tell him this

"It is quite respectful, to be willing to cripple yourself just to protect your comrades" Ping says, rubbing his chin as Lei writes out his message
Cont
>>
>>5575527

"I can always make more" You read as Ping looks scandalized and offended by his crude remark "Not like much was lost, only the heir inherited the completed form of our techniques, our law wasn't even recorded in a manual for safekeeping. My uncle had to have the balls of a bull to choose the needle and thread! That method was considered the most painful"

"Oh, so you still remember the forbidden art you cultivated through?" You ask predatorially, grinning and flashing your fangs in Lei's face as he nods calmly, and taps his head for emphasis "All of it?"

He nods again and more forcefully and pulls his arm back to give a very dramatic thumbs up

"I find that hard to believe. I know you recorded the contents of five entire manuals after reading through them once, but you're a genius prodigy and Lei is" Ping says trying his best to remain polite as he flicks his sleeve and draws a circle around his sworn brother with his hand "Lei"

Lei nods in agreement with his brothers insult, before writing a diagram for a spell on the wall unlike any you've seen before. Most of its writing is in the demonic language.

He steps back and gestures to it with both hands, like a fisher presenting his largest catch of the day to a crowd or an overly smothering parent showing off their child.

"Well, I'll be damned" You laughed as the spell diagram begins to activate, but Lei stops it from releasing its magic with a palm strike, pulling the water he drew it with into his palm "Do you think you could break tradition, shame your ancestors and write what you know down"

He taps his chin

"You cannot ask him to betray his clan, even if they're dead or were villains deserving the fate they met" Ping scolds, tugging gently on one of your whiskers

Lei just nods and turns to Ping, making a very rude gesture

"You accepted just to prove me wrong, didn't you" Ping hisses, eyes narrowed to snake light slights that seem set aglow with the annoyance he is so obviously feeling.

"Thank you Lei! That'll be your first responsibility as an inner disciple! Recording your Demonic Cultivation Methods down into a single Manual. You've immortalized your dead family by gifting us their strength!" You declare happily, flicking your tail and patting him on the shoulder with your paw"

"So I should change his schedule so he won't have to assist Monu in processing that Crow Demon's corpse?" Ping asks, as you continue to walk and follow the stream towards your spirit herb gardens

"She's still working on refining that piece of shit?" You ask disdainfully and in a very undignified and churlish manner

"She's almost done" Ping reassures "its just that there was a lot to take from that corpse, it was a gold mind of materials"

"Oh I'm getting giddy just thinking about it!" You cackle "Yes, change his schedule and make sure he's free to spend most of his day writing"

Ping nods, and grabs Lei by the ear, pulling him away from a diagram he was busy himself drawing.
Cont
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>>5575528

'And speaking of bastard devils, there's one I need to talk to. Lei might remember what happened to his clan and family, but actually getting him to tell it would be a real pain in the ass' You think as the two of them leave you alone by the stream 'And his writing is pretty bad, and having to read too much of it is sure to give me a headache!'

So turning around, you decide to talk to the demon trapped in the jade box you made.

"Hey! Hey! Wake up!" you shout at it, slamming a paw atop it "I have questions to ask you!"

"Oh! You're the one who trapped me again!' The demon barks back in a surprisingly feminine voice "That's a real mean thing to do, ya hear little girl?! I was just about to thank you before you stuck me in this stinking box!"

"Wait your a woman?" You gasp in disbelief as the devil, who talks very much like Tiexingege and Houmogui do, but somehow even more rough and thuggishly

"What do you mean I'm a woman!" They bellow and drawl, stomping the jade box up in down "Is it obvious! Why the hell did you put me in this box of jade filled with shit anyways! You ripped me out of that fucking bastard who tricked me years ago, only to trap me again! I don't get what your game is girly"

"Hah? You've talked down to me twice now, bitch" You disdainfully spit back "And I caged you because you'd rampage around if I didn't. I don't enjoy picking up other's messes, its beneath me!"

"Tch, acting like you're royalty" They grumble "Big shots like you piss me off"

"I am" You answer earnestly

The silence that falls could be cut with a knife.

"Oh you're serious...well, your majesty, what exactly do you want to ask me and it better be how to beg for forgiveness so I don't eat your pretty face when I drag myself out of here! I caught a glimpse before I lost my sense again! You were a tasty looking..." They rage back, you smack the box against the wall and bat it around until they talk to you in a more respectful and pleasing manner.

"Alright! Alright I give! I give!" They squeak out "I'll tell ya whatever you want to know! I know plenty of things! Curses, demonic cultivation, shady drug recipes! Places where bigshots died and left their loot behind! Just stop throwing me around, please!"

"What happened right after your were sealed inside the man I exorcised you from?" You ask

"I don't get why you'd care, but I'll tell you anyways! I had been invited by this cult of demon worshippers. They seemed like good, friendly people. Made me feel at home, treated me like a princess. Gave me corpses and pretty boys and wine until I got sick of them!" They laughed "I didn't realize they were fattening me up so I couldn't run! Which I have to praise, since it takes guts for a mortal to treat us devils like usually treat them! Anyways, I had uh..."

Gotten completely tamed? Grew too fat to lift themselves from their own bed? Became a worthless drunk?
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>>5575529

"I had taken several of them as my students, the handsome boys they had, ones I had marked to make into men when they were grown" She rambled on, sounding like she were drooling over herself and slurping it back up "And I was teaching them my martial arts and some magic I knew, it was part of the deal we had and how they got stronger, they'd lure in demons, drown them in vices and offerings and then when they were backed into a corner, they'd refine them into pure spiritual energy and absorb them! Devouring them like a ripened peach! Fucking disgusting right"

'Didn't you just admit to eating your own hosts and grooming their kids into being your lovers? Why are you acting like you were the one wronged here' you think but don't actually accuse them as much as you'd like to 'Also that isn't what Lei's technique was"

"Actually, from how I understand it, they'd just force you to possess them and then drain your cultivation base to increase their own " You say slowly, careful not to let her realize just how stupid you think she is "Otherwise you wouldn't still be alive. Its like the reverse of a parasite, that feeds off the intruder into their body rather than the other way around"

"There's only so much Qi to give before its all sucked up" She growls "Don't think I don't know what was going on. I got nailed to his meridians and they sunk into me, it fucking hurt. Like a thousand leeches latched all over me. He was trying to eat me"

"No" You say, shaking your head "you had a much worse fate in front of you if he had actually performed the sealing spell right, you'd be an eternal battery"

"Eh? What's that?' The ask back, sounding completely lost

"Doesn't matter" You sigh, realizing they were actually dumber than you thought they were "So, what happened to this cult"

"Oh, all slaughtered, apparently one of the boys I was raising got a bit jealous and did a suicide run directly into a righteous sects training yard and uh, well called divine retribution down on the rest of that bastard clan" She said, talking like it was the punch like to a great joke "Young man actually took some heads before he got pinned to the ground and torn apart and uh, well I wanted to run but that one boy, the one who I was stuck inside grabbed me, his mouth filled with blood and smoke and shoved my head into his chest and started using me like a uh bah tur aye"

"Oh?" You urge

"Yeah, I was trying to grab my favorites and run, since the cultivators had already broken through the walls and started the killing, and next thing I knew I was swallowed up