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Roads Untraveled

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Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Tue Jul 17, 2012 10:34 am

A wayward cerulean glare fell upon the leather gently set upon the seat of the assassin's car. Jacket, coat, trousers... even his black combat boots set neatly atop the pile, wiped, shined, and cleaned... all had been shed. It was as if he'd evaporated and left behind nothing but his clothes. And, unfortunately enough for Ayden, that wasn't the case.

A mumble resonated through the Audi's still air. "I can't believe I'm doing this," He spoke gruffly, running one hand through his silver locks, before, finally, wrenching the keys from the ignition, opening the car door, and stepping out into the warm back-streets of Xi'an, bathed in yellow Xingese sunlight. It was beautiful... and apparently, far too hot for leather, according to his fiancé. Letting the door click shut behind him as he sighed, Ayden Derocha pressed the 'lock' button on his keys, and pocketed them, before looking down at his attire.

Somehow, Jeu-Hee had convinced him that it was a good idea for a change of pace, to look more like a tourist, and less like a serial killer. Wearing a loose Hawaiian flower-print shirt in red and orange, a pair of beige shorts that just covered his knees, and a pair of sandals... Ayden begrudgingly began the ten-minute walk from this side of the city to his bride-to-be's family home. The clothes, he'd agreed, reluctantly, were a good idea, and fairly cheap, but left him grossly unable to walk around kitted out to all hell. Beneath the shirt were twin shoulder-holsters, the hide of which were rubbing against the bare skin of his collars, which his only armaments, the twin M1911A1 pistols, hung in. Perhaps he was crazy for this woman, crazy enough to warrant a significant change in his dress sense... but he wasn't walking into anywhere unarmed. The shirt was loose enough that the pistols' frames didn't show beneath it, so, there wasn't any risk of detection, unless his would-be parents-in-law had a metal detector installed.

From beyond the simple sleeves protruded the inked tendrils of his transmutation arrays. In Xing, alchemy and alkahestry were both studied intensely, and both accepted as arts. There was no point trying to hide it, in reality. Only the most basic of individuals couldn't tell when an alkahestrist or alchemist was present; the scientists usually had a certain... air, about them. Of intelligence, of intensity, of command... for Ayden, he translated it as power. Knowledge was power, and given his recent chat with the Chancellor, and his promotion...

All of his other gear was stacked up high in the R8's trunk, leaving him to trek around town, hands in his pocket, feeling naked with only two pistols, a phone, a wallet, and a set of keys. The trail out of Xi'an was slow and calming enough that he was allowed a little time to take inventory before Jeu-Hee's home appeared on the horizon, and Ayden straightened himself out, running an anxious - yes, anxious - hand through his hair. Was fearless assassin, Ayden Derocha, scared, for perhaps the first time in his life?

As much as he would later deny it, yes. Yes he was. Whilst murderers and soldiers armed to the teeth bore minimal threats to him, and he wasn't afraid of heights, fast cars, or loud noises, he was still very much averse to the idea of meeting the elder Hans for one simple reason. His mind was running on overdrive, and calculating every possible negative possibility, every possible response they could come up with denying him his daughter's hand in marriage. 'We don't know you enough'. 'You're not Xingese'. 'You seem like a bad person'. All hypothetical, but the last the most damning of all, left Ayden feeling inadequate, vulnerable, and above all else, like a normal person.

Ayden didn't like feeling like a normal person.

He'd been preparing responses to just about any question he could fathom; this was hopefully going to be quick-fire and painless, but, for some reason, for the first time in years, his body was highlighting the margin for error within each one, purposefully blundering, remember the wrong facts. "Keep it together, Derocha..." He mumbled, under his breath, reduced from the dominant, powerful, striking visage of a serial killer to a bumbling wreck with one word, four letters... and, of course, the Hawaiian shirt set him even more out of place.

"Keep it together!" Ayden hissed, swerving onto the path leading up to his fiancé's home. He'd kept in contact with her all the way from North to Xing, since setting off early this morning all the way up to pulling into the outskirts of Xi'an now, at close to six in the evening. Plans? Plans had been made. He'd meet her parents, invite them to dinner on his behalf, make sweet talk for a while, then hope that he'd be invited to stay whilst they planned the wedding. Since the Briggs fiasco tying in with the battles last month, he'd been granted an additional three weeks' leave, all of which he intended to spend in Xi'an with his love. Once those three weeks ended... it didn't bear thinking about. It was really just unfathomable; he couldn't think beyond the next thirty minutes given his current situation, heart pounding in his throat.

The ritualistic routine that he'd made at least four times since departing on this ten-minute stretch of the journey came once more. Hands run through hair. Shirt straightened. Check pockets. Check buttons. Crouch down and check sandals. Stand back up. Begin walking. This time, he completed and checked everything with fluidity and perfection, now still second-nature, but the last step wasn't necessary. He'd turned into Jeu-Hee's drive. He had reached his destination. It was time to do or die, the make or break moment. Lights were on inside. She'd hopefully told them of his arrival... or, perhaps not... ah, shit. It didn't matter, either way.

Crunching gravel beneath his feet as he ascended the steps to the Hans' front door, taking a quick look from left to right and adjusting his attire and checking he was clean-shaven in a nearby reflection off one of the windows, Ayden finally sighed, rose one hand, and rapped his knuckles on the front door, three times, equidistant, less than a second between each knock. Signature. Fluid. Well-oiled. Everything thus far was going to plan... but there was still so much to screw up.

Knock. Knock. Knock. The die was cast.

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Wed Jul 18, 2012 2:27 am

It was here. The day was finally here. Ayden was going... to meet her parents. While he was freaking out in his own way, she was... a nervous ball of mess. She was currently sitting up in her room wearing a tank top and short shorts that she relaxed in about the house, her slippers forgotten next to her dressing table. For now she was combing out her long hair as she bit her lower lip in hard thought. When she had broke the news to her parents that she had, in fact, been seeing someone, their reactions had been... surprisingly not exactly what she thought. Well, her father was her father, he was of course in full "protect his girl" mode, while her mother was rather excited. She had half expected them to explode on her and demand to know why they hadn't this man immediately when this happened. Why she hadn't told them sooner. She had described him a little to them, and they were (not unexpectedly) surprised that he wasn't a Xingese man. Though they hadn't looked at her either and told her that she should only date within their people, that was stupid.

The brush clattered to the counter top rather loudly as she sat bolt upright, staring at herself quite intensely in the mirror, forcing herself to stop biting her lower lip. At this rate she might chew through it! Her hair was showing tinges of red as she fought against changing into her fox form out of sheer nerves, her chest still sore from where she had gotten thrown by that monster not too long ago. God... was this happening? This was happening. What should she wear? Were they going to be ok with this? After telling them, they had immediately noticed the makeshift ring upon her finger and her father was the one to ask her exactly what it was. The smartass answer would be a washer and a bullet casing, but she hadn't said that. Ancestors had she been stammering so badly! Her cheeks still flushed a brilliant red just thinking about it. THAT was when the room had gone quiet, when she told them that she was actually engaged to him. She could still feel the weight of her fathers gaze on her back even up here in her room. Thank goodness for her mother being there to smooth things out and be calm and understanding and... Oooooo!!!! They weren't going to eat him alive were they? She hoped they liked him. She hoped that they wouldn't disown her or anything. She hoped.... Oh what in the world was she even thinking now??? She had to be positive! This was going to go well, they would plan out her wedding, and everything would be dandy right?

.... Right?

Rising quickly from the stool, she paced around her room in total distracted thought, just... just... needing to move. For heaven's sake she couldn't sit still she was so nervous! "Jeu-Hee! Are you ready yet? You know he'll probably be here soon!" Came the sound of her mothers voice from downstairs in Ishvallan, not at all uncommon in their household of languages. "Yes!! I'll be down in.. uh... f-five minutes!" She stammered, running over to her closet and tripping over the corner of her bed. She promptly tumbled into the wall, and winced, rubbing her head with a soft curse under her breath. Ancestors above, get it together girl! But her mother was right, she couldn't dally. "You alright up there?" Her father was calling now, and she could hear him on the stairs, quickly scrambling to her feet as she opened up her armoir to look at her clothes. "Yeah! I'm fine! I just tripped!" She called quickly, grabbing the first thing that her hand fell upon. It was a black linen dress that wasn't too long on her body, but not too short either. It fell down just past her thighs closer towards her knees. She threw on black slippers that matched, hurrying over to the mirror to give herself a quick look.

Lordy she looked like a frazzled mess. She began to coil up her long hair into a braid that went about her head and ended in a bun at the base of her neck, pinning a couple of flowers into the long train. "Jeu-Hee, are you coming?" Eep! "Yes mother!" And with that she flung the door open and bolted down the stairs, almost sliding down them in her haste. It would be fine, it would be fine, it would be fine... She came to a stop as her father stepped into view with his arms folded over his chest, giving her a once over with his eyes before nodding once. Jun Han stood at about 5'6" with wavy black hair that was definitely graying. Glasses were perched upon his nose which really accentuated the fact he was a researcher of some sort. His build was slim to the point where plenty of people asked him if his wife fed him enough. But he just waved it away with a laugh and smile. A "fast metabolism" as he put it. "So he's a militant who also works as an assassin, and he lives in Fort Briggs. This is correct?" She nodded, feeling the urge to bite her lower lip again as she stared up into her fathers hazel eyes. "Ok." And he just walked into the living room with another word. AAAARGGGH?! What did that mean?! "Ok?!" Just ok?! Was that a good ok or bad ok? awijfawiefja wijaweiojf peorjfawe!!

"Now now, don't stress her out. I'm sure she's already doing that to herself as is. Aren't you?" "Y-yeah... Don't be too harsh on him ok? He's probably freaking out too. He's never done anything like this before. He's really sweet, you'll see! He's always-" Her mother laughed as she came into view, poking her head out of the living room to look at her daughter. Mei Han was a warm woman who stood at 5'5" and was as skinny as her child. Her dark hair was pulled back into a simple chignon at the base of her neck, a few streaks of grey tinging the color like her father. Jeu-Hee was the perfect mix of her parents, her mothers chuckle resounding just a bit like her daughters. "Shhh, we will get to see when he gets here." And there came the knock at the door. Jeu-Hee startled to attention and let out a little eep, her mother glancing towards the front door before nodding in its direction. "Well go answer it!" Her chuckle softened as she joined her husband in the living room leaving Jeu-Hee alone in the entry way.

Oi... Here it was.... Taking a deep breath, she summoned up her sweet smile though she didn't really need to. She was about to see her love again after all! Walking up, she gripped the handle and deftly undid the locks, opening it slowly to see him standing there... in... Snrk... A hawaiin shirt. She couldn't help it, she let out a giggle and promptly hugged him tightly, having to jump up a bit to compensate for height difference. "Hi." She said brightly, her nerves starting to calm as his presence began to fill her. She could feel that he still had guns beneath his shirt. She hadn't expected any less. Pulling away slowly, she pecked him on the lips and grinned, her hands slipping into his as she gestured for him to come in. "You ready for this?" She asked him quietly as she searched his face, already detecting that he was just as nervous, if not moreso, than her about this. She gave his hands a gentle squeeze, feeling his skin that had seen plenty of battles, one hand closing the door behind him. They could do this.

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:15 pm

The door swung open not a moment after he rapped on it. "Hi." There she was, standing, in that simple black dress, as beautiful as ever. A bright smile; for that moment that she stood still, the pair of them both looked as dumbfounded as ever. Engagement stars in their eyes, like every time they met was the first, and every song on the radio was about them. "You ready for this?"

What a good question. In some senses of the word, yes, he was ready, but, for the most part, no, he wasn't. Despite Ayden's motto of always coming over-prepared for just about anything, today, no matter how many measures he took towards it, the assassin hadn't felt at all so. He felt entirely, wholly, and completely underprepared. And in his line of work, underprepared meant inadequate... and inadequacy was not going to impress the elder Hans, Ayden knew that much. But, because he didn't want to worry her, and, because such is the way of love, he simply stepped inside, pecked her back on the lips, and brushed it off with a brief reply. "As much so as I can be," Hm. His Xingese felt a little rusty, probably because he hadn't used it in a little. Today would be an opportunity to oil the works, so to speak.

She was right, however. Beneath the anxiety and the nerves, together, they were a team with a will of iron and the ability to conquer just about any obstacle. And in their hearts, in the very pits of their stomachs, they knew this much, so, within, they knew that this was well within the realms of possibility; Ayden himself was just so frightened because, aside from Heart, whom, even then, had kept things subtle at the most touchy-feely of times, he hadn't ever really had an emotional bond on this level. That, and, the obligatory in-laws interrogation session was going to be... interesting. Ayden didn't know quite how much Jeu-Hee had told her parents of his... occupations.

Slipping off his shoes and pushing them neatly aside the others, Ayden scratched the back of his neck idly, scanning the foyer of the humble Xingese home. He recalled it vividly from his last visit, but he'd only really seen the place in the dead of night and the early morning. Now that the times aligned properly... it had a far more homely feel. Ayden turned to her once more, with the blissful smile of an idiot upon his face, and swept down to kiss her gently upon the cheek, happy enough that he was here. It was a welcome contrast to desk work at Briggs, but after the Drachman debacle and capture, he and Reila were close enough that asking for three weeks' leave was of no real event. "Where do you want me to go?" He murmured, doing his best to stay quiet, and making no espionage-based attempts to switch into another language; he knew of his lover's linguistic sense, and suspected that she followed from her parents in that vein.

The house, however, seemed more than an adequate place for her to have grown up in, and would hopefully be a more than adequate place for the pair of them to spend the next couple of weeks together if everything went to plan; otherwise, he'd find a nearby hotel, stay here during the day, and just go back to his room to sleep. The assassin blinked; he didn't mind either way, but his gut was fully churning now, nerves taking their toll. What would they think of his being an alchemist? Of his body art? How eager he was to express himself? His mannerisms? His speech? His intelligence? His quirks, habits, tendencies-

Gah, he was being stupid! Hearing the subtle echoes of conversation and the gentle noise of two people gathering from the nearby living room, Ayden nodded to Jeu-Hee; he didn't need an answer now. Taking a long, deep breath, possibly the deepest of his life thus far, the assassin took a moment to consider on how different things had been lately. Emotion had been flecking the blood he shed; Heart was gone, and he was still in the process of seeking vengeance for this very fact. And now, he was nervous, concerned, in love, and engaged. Finally, he exhaled, hissing out every last molecule that he'd inhaled, and, with his lungs vacant, stepped into the living room, and smiled down at Jeu-Hee's parents.

For a moment, he stood there, trying so very hard to stem the tide's flow on this one, to keep his mind from making assumptions, presumptions, and trying his best not to let that cold, callous analytic sense kick in, trying not to judge before he got to know them properly, and remembered that he was here to be judged, and not the other way around. And with that, he opened his mouth, smiled as pleasantly as he could, put on a brave face, and spoke. "Good evening," He said with a smile, bowing his back gently out of sheer formality. Beginner's Xingese tips and tricks were kicking back in. Things were becoming less stiff and wordy with every syllable. "My name's Ayden. It's a pleasure to finally meet you,"

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Shula Brighton on Sun Aug 05, 2012 2:37 pm

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Mon Aug 20, 2012 4:35 pm

Oh dear, it was so obvious to her how much he was stressing out over this! No that he shouldn't stress, this was a perfect situation to stress over except maybe he shouldn't stress so much? Oh she didn't know anymore! They were such goofballs right now with how much they were fretting over this. He was trying to hide it, she could sense that much though he still smelled slightly of fear. But not in the "oh god battle" sort of fear, the "oh god parents" sort of way. She smiled sweetly at his little peck"As much so as I can be." Well that was a good answer. "We've got this. My parents already saw how nervous I was and I told them to be nice. Not that they wouldn't be nice naturally because they really are nice individuals, but-- Oh you know what I mean." She rambled on, blushing faintly out of embarrassment for showing just how nervous she was when he was containing himself so well! Aiya.... How was this going to go?

NO. BAD THINKING. This was going to go FINE. In fact, this was going to go so swimmingly that there just wouldn't be any issues because there just... wouldn't be any. So there! She turned her eyes towards the living room where her parents were waiting in hushed voices, zoning out for a moment in her little tizzy until she felt his lips upon her cheek. It caused her to startle a little, but the grin that followed filled her entire being as she gave his hands a soft squeeze. Her heart that had been racing so out of fear began to slow, to calm down to a still water of a pool as she stared up at him. He was here with her, and neither of them were alone in this endeavor. This extremely exciting endeavor! She could feel the weight of his makeshift ring upon her hand and it calmed her even further as she took one last deep breath, exhaling slowly as his voice reached her ears. "Where do you want me to go?" Jeu-Hee gestured with her arm towards the living room, one hand continuing to hold his as she smiled softly up at him before leading him further into her house.

Though she slowed as she felt his steps falter behind her, turning back to stare up at him. He looked like he might burst a blood vessel from how hard he was thinking about this and worry pricked at her as she watched him quietly. "It'll be alright Ayden." She murmured quietly though it didn't seem like he needed it as he exhaled such a long breath and stepped right past her into the living room. She followed after him and stood next to him with a little bit of meekness in her stance as her parents looked up from their conversation to the pair that now stood before them. Jun Han seemed both relaxed but a bit serious, his eyes calmly looking over the tall man that stood next to his daughter in such.... interesting... clothes. He began to rise, his wife's arm looped through his as they both gazed upon the man that their daughter was engaged to. Mei Han, on the other hand, wore a warm smile that held hints of Jeu-Hee, standing next to her husband with one arm through his and her other hand resting on his elbow. They considered the two quietly as they waited for them to make the first move, Mei leaning close to her husband to whisper something in his ear.

Jeu-Hee, on the other hand, stepped forward with Ayden, her hand holding onto his rather tightly. Here it was. Here it was, they were about to meet and then her parents would know who he was and everything. "Good evening," "Good evening." Mei answered with a bow of her head as her husband nodded the return greeting beside her. It was a bit amusing how formal the boy was being, but then again they could guess at how he might be feeling inside at this rather important meeting. Jeu-Hee met their gaze for a moment, praying and pleading for them to be kind. They had to know how much this meant to her, how much Ayden meant to her. But earlier they hadn't seemed too harsh at all so this should go well, right? "My name's Ayden. It's a pleasure to finally meet you," Her mother was the one to step forward first and offer her hand with her easy smile, staring up at the silver haired man with some of the brightness that shone in her daughters eyes at times. "Mei Han, a pleasure indeed Ayden. I'm glad you could come see us today." She began, turning towards her husband as he stepped forward and offered his hand as well to the man, his neutral-calm expression not really shifting in the least bit. "Jun Han, a pleasure. So you are a militant in Amestris, yes?" He asked as he gestured for Ayden to take a seat if he so chose to.

Jeu-Hee started to move towards the loveseat across from the couch, finding that her voice had vanished for a moment as her parents first spoke to her fiance. Well, so far so good.... She wasn't seeing any immediate signs that she should worry about between any of them so this would definitely go well... Right? Right! No doubts, no doubts at all. She couldn't have those and make herself fret more. Startling a bit, she let go of Ayden's hand as she bit her lower lip and moved towards the door frame that led into the kitchen. "Does anyone need a drink? Tea or something?" Normally whenever she had a major meeting like this one she had tea ready, and this time she didn't! Though this was hardly a business meeting or anything but still..... Oi..... "None for us dear, thank you though." Her mother answered in Cretan, her father shaking his head as well as they sat back down on the couch. "Ok." She mumbled as she sat down on the loveseat, her green eyes staring up at Ayden. Aiya.....

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Mon Aug 20, 2012 6:27 pm

"We've got this. My parents already saw how nervous I was and I told them to be nice. Not that they wouldn't be nice naturally because they really are nice individuals, but-- Oh you know what I mean." Ayden inclined his head gently and chuckled, moving down to peck her on the cheek. He knew she had a tendency to ramble when it came to things like this, and she just needed to calm down for her own safety; it was in his hands, now. And he was going to do the best job he could.

"Shh, stop stressing yourself," He muttered quietly with a wayward smile before entering. She'd probably been flitting around all morning trying to make sure everything was up to standards and in place for their little gathering. God, he could slaughter a warehouse full of men without batting an eyelid and take on a man on a minigun without a scratch, but it came to meeting his fiancé's parents, and his stomach was vibrating jelly.

"It'll be alright Ayden." Somehow that reassurance worked its way into the assassin's very core, and helped at least stem the tides generating overwhelming waves of chaos racking through the General's body and causing him immeasurable instability. He could maintain his cool through even meetings with the Chancellor. He was a Major General, composure was to be a standard, and yet here he was breaking down?! It was Murphy's Law all over again.

Both half a foot shorter than him, he could see where Jeu-Hee's height came from; and her black hair. She didn't look dissimilar to her parents in the slightest. Interlocked arms created an idyllic snapshot of family life as they smiled briefly upwards, her mother speaking first. "Mei Han, a pleasure indeed Ayden. I'm glad you could come see us today." Ayden shook her hand swiftly and turned to her husband next with a smile, his fiancé's smile, who seemed to have a bit of an inquisitive nature about him. "Jun Han, a pleasure. So you are a militant in Amestris, yes?"

"Really, the pleasure's all mine, and I'm glad I could come along," Ayden was of course one to remember his priorities: first impressions. Being polite would make this whole thing a lot smoother. "And, yes, Mr. Han, I am indeed a militant. Major General working out of Fort Briggs, the country's Alchemy Specialist." Normally he'd give the usual "artisan" speak, but his gut instinct was telling his mind it was a very bad idea. No confusion, just speaking when spoken to and putting on a brave, happy face.

At Mr. Han's gesture, Ayden swiftly took a seat, planting himself upon a couch opposite. Almost mechanically, at the same time, Jeu-Hee rose to her feet, fretting again. "Does anyone need a drink? Tea or something?" He smiled fondly, losing himself in memories and appreciation for a moment. It was so very like her. "None for us dear, thank you though." Aha, such a seamless shifting of languages. It seemed the parents were just as linguistic as their daughter. She obviously came from an intelligent family. That was good. "Ok."

They were playing language hotseat, so it was a little difficult to keep up; especially seeing as he only knew six to his fiancé's dozen, but he tried his best to wrestle with the flow of the room and prove easy to talk to and personable. "I'm fine, thank you," He tried to keep terms of affection out of his speech; from his analysis, her parents seemed reasonable enough, but his brain wasn't working at full capacity, and he didn't want to seem crude from getting emotional too quickly. Then again, he didn't want to seem totally mechanic. It was a game he'd played many times at all, estimating the tone of the room, and Ayden was well beyond an expert; but here, the conditions were starting to bear down quickly, and they were the only ones that would apply any sort of pressure whatsoever. Meeting Jeu-Hee's parents.

The Xingese July heat was relentless, but that was another purpose of the assassin's surprisingly pragmatic attire, to at least give him some ventilation room. Usually, he was fine with temperature extremes; here, tiny beads of sweat were forming on his forehead for another reason entirely. "Before we go any further, thank you for allowing me into your home," He was trying to word things delicately and not step on his feet. "Both today and on the day of my last visit. I'm sorry I wasn't around to thank you then; the day..." He looked to Jeu-Hee with a smile, and wrapped his hand around hers once more. The memory was still vivid in his mind. The smells rising slowly from the bar. The gentle sound of trickling water. The dull thunk of wood as he shot through the lock trying to ensure that she was okay. That was the day they'd gotten engaged. His tumbler ring still glinted on her hand, bringing a smile to his face and offering a temporary reprieve as a contented wave slowly drifted over him and set him at ease for a moment. "...got away from us, to say the least." And it was the truth, misinterpretations aside.

Turning back to the elder Hans and raising his free hand with a warm smile, Ayden tried to raise the tone of the room a touch. "Please, ask as many questions as you'd like. I'm an open book," Hoping that it would at least help oil the rusted cogs of the conversational machine keeping the room going as grindingly slow as it was, he looked from Mr. Han to Mrs. Han then back again, indicating that he was very much ready. In his mind, he'd made a verdict; they were good people. "Interrogate me as much as you see fit," A gentle, joking chuckle, and the assassin drifted back into the chair. He was out of his element... but the air was clear enough, and slowly, but surely, looking into the giant emerald orbs of his love, he smiled, and realised that he was at ease.

Good people. And he hoped to whatever God or supreme being was out there that they'd accept him as up to the standards when it came to marrying their daughter. With their blessing, they could get to planning the wedding; and he could be with Jeu-Hee.

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Tue Aug 21, 2012 2:29 pm

Jeu-Hee couldn't help but glance nervously between her parents and her fiance as they exchanged greetings, fighting as hard as she could to not bite her lower lip. Aiya this was so stressful!! "Really, the pleasure's all mine, and I'm glad I could come along," Both parents smiled and nodded to this, Mei glancing to her husband with a small little smirk of her own before both turned their attention to the boy as he continued. "And, yes, Mr. Han, I am indeed a militant. Major General working out of Fort Briggs, the country's Alchemy Specialist." It was Jun's turn to nod, quite impressed with the rank and his specialty. "Impressive. I have friends that work in teams similar to your rank except with Alkahestry. One of them took in our dear daughter here when she was much younger." He spoke, gesturing to Jeu-Hee with a fond smile. There might have been the smallest hint of discomfort hidden in his hazel eyes, but she knew that he would always feel conflicted over what had happened. "I went of my own free will papa. And besides, Dr. Wong helped you out greatly with your own work." She reminded him, falling quiet as she started to sit down before offering everyone drinks. Anything to settle her nerves somehow.

"I'm fine, thank you," She nodded slowly before sitting back down next to him, taking a deep breath as she could feel her hair beginning to grow red as she drew close to transforming again. She had to straighten her back to sit up a bit because her side was beginning to complain at her poor posture. Damn chimera those days ago... "Before we go any further, thank you for allowing me into your home," Mei smiled and waved a hand as if to say it was no problem at all, neither saying a word since it was clear that he had more to say. "Both today and on the day of my last visit. I'm sorry I wasn't around to thank you then; the day..." It was Jeu-Hee's turn to look up to her love, meeting his gaze with her small sweet little smile, her hand tightening its grip on his ever so slightly. The day she showed him one of her favorite places, where she broke down, where they healed, where... Hee...heeeheeeheeeee!!! He proposed~ When she said yes~! She could feel her cheeks beginning to flush at the memory, unable to contain the small giggle that had gathered in her throat. Mei and Jun couldn't help but glance to each other with knowing smiles of their own, Jun placing a hand on top of his wife's to stroke her skin softly. "...got away from us, to say the least." Mei was the one to chuckle now as she remembered the state that her daughter had come home in that particular day. "As day's often do. She came back quite giddy and soaked despite the cuts on her palms."

Jeu-Hee startled a bit and sat bolt upright, her cheeks growing right rosy as she stared at her mother in disbelief. "Moooom!" She pleaded out of complete embarrassment, quite relieved when Ayden continued the conversation elsewhere. "Please, ask as many questions as you'd like. I'm an open book," Oh dear, was that quite wise? Her parents could be quite... probing.... "Interrogate me as much as you see fit," Her parents looked at each other and seemed to decide who would speak next without any words, both now turning to look at the pair before them. "Well, I don't think this needs to be a full interrogation, we aren't that intense!" She chuckled and glanced towards the door as there was a ring of the doorbell, nodding to Jeu-Hee for her to go answer it. "So, Ayden, Jeu-Hee also mentioned that you take some assassination work as well besides your military. What exactly does that entail?" Jun paused here and tilted his head, growing rather stern for a moment as he stared with a sudden intensity at him. "You didn't have a contract for our daughter, did you?"

Jeu-Hee, meanwhile, had risen from her seat to go answer the door, her face growing pale at the questions that were being asked. Aiya.... They could be so straight and to the point sometimes! What ever happened to normal questions like, "What about your family?" Or "How did you two meet?" Or anything! But then she focused on the other question on her mind which was, who in the world could be at the door? She opened it to find......

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Tue Aug 21, 2012 3:39 pm

The sun was setting on another beautiful day in his homeland of Xing, and boy did it bring such a smile to Wei Zhao Han's face. His pipe dangled from between his lips as he hummed a tune to himself, shoes slapping quietly against the stone of the streets. The smoke trailed upwards as he exhaled a stream of smoke with a smirk to himself. The summer heat did reach him through his various layers, but he hardly felt it since he was used to how much hotter it could get out in his home village with all of his people. There he may very well abandon a shirt altogether and play with the children in the river nearby. Ah... he did miss it there with the more open spaces and clearer signs of nature that surrounded them. Xi'an was certainly a gorgeous city that still valued the riches of nature much higher than other countries, but it was still a city. And a city always gave up spaces for trees and whatnot for buildings instead. So he wound his way through the streets with his hair spiking up towards the sky with one last puff of his pipe. He tapped out the contents in an appropriate bin so as not to litter about the city, the carved object vanishing into the folds of his clothes as he cracked his neck.

"The road goes ever on and on..." A low voice sang softly as he approached the quaint looking house on the row near the palace by a few blocks. After that delightful meeting with the young Lucrezia (or maybe not so young heh), Wei had indeed found himself at the doorstep of part of his purpose for returning to the capital. The Han residence. While the family had separated itself from the clan in terms of location, they still remained part of his family by extension and so it was a friendly, no, a DUTIFUL, visit to their humble abode. Especially when they were doing so well for the clan and bringing them such honor! And well, Wei wanted to see if Jun Han would even remember him from when they were children and his parents had them move into the capital away from the rest of the Han Clan. "I suppose it is true that you never know where your feet will take you." He murmured to himself with a soft chuckle, checking over his appearance before deciding that he appeared quite presentable and not too bum-ish. He really had to wonder why so many people mistook him for a bum! He was far too clean to be a bum! Well, except for his scruff perhaps, but that was an acquired look that he just preferred.

Raising a hand, he pressed the doorbell and waited patiently for someone to get the door, hoping that there were people home for him to meet. That would be rather unfortunate if he came at such a wrong time. Then again... it wasn't as if he had called ahead or anything to ensure that it indeed was a good time to stop by. Oh no matter! This was a social visit! And they didn't know him anyways, this would be fun! A few moments later the door unlocked and was opened by a short young woman with very distinctive green eyes that peered out of her Xingese face. She appeared rather nervous and surprised to have an extra visitor at their house, but she still smiled politely to him as he couldn't help but grin like a goof. "Can I help you?" She asked him, and he realized then that he hadn't quite thought this through as best as he could have. "Yes you can! My name is Wei Zhao Han, are you... Let me think... No don't tell me..." He had to think for a moment before his expression changed to one of realization that went with an "A-Ha!" moment. He pointed towards her and somehow seemed to grin more, "You are Jeu-Hee Han if I am not mistaken, yes?"

Well now she just seemed completely at a loss at this bright and cheerful man on her doorstep, but she still nodded to him glancing back towards the living room as if something were happening there. "Yes I am. You said your last name was Han? What brings you here?" It was now that Wei's brows furrowed and he peered into the entry way a bit, turning his own green eyes down to her. "What brings... OH right! I'm, well, your clan leader. Is it alright if I come in? I hope I'm not interrupting anything." The moment that he mentioned his rank the girl startled and instantly opened the door wide to allow him to enter, bowing as if he were the emperor himself. "Aiya! Please excuse me sir! I... we... Um..." Wei couldn't help but find the whole thing rather adorable as he chuckled softly to himself, stepping inside and closing the door behind himself. "It's alright child. Do rise, I'm not THAT important. Where is he now..." He patted Jeu-Hee on the shoulder before proceeding further into the house, following after the faint sounds of voices that emanated from the living room.

Peering in, he saw that Jeu-Hee's parents were speaking to another individual with distinctive silver hair that was.... extremely long. Ancestors that must be a pain to maintain. "Forgive the interruption, I just-" "Wei Zhao? Wei Zhao Han?" Jun Han immediately rose to his feet in complete disbelief, excusing himself from his wife and his daughters fiance to approach the man from his child hood. "As I live and breathe. How are you doing Jun? It's been years!" His laughter boomed out as the two men shook hands, though then Jun seemed embarrassed for a moment as he turned back to the two he had been speaking to. Jeu-Hee had slipped back from the door to the silver haired man's side and held his hand tightly,the awe still clear on her features. "I do apologize, I wasn't expecting to see this man today. Mei, Ayden, this is Wei Zhao Han. He was a childhood friend of mine who was the son of the-" It was here that Wei held up a hand and appeared more modest, patting Jun on the shoulder. "A pleasure to meet both of you. I have indeed interrupted something and I do apologize. As Clan Leader I wished to visit the extended family of my own, especially with everything that has just happened. I'll go get myself some tea if thats alright." Jun was now staring at him dumbfounded, blinking twice before he snapped out of it and nodded, gesturing towards the kitchen before returning to his wife's side on the couch. "Of course. Help yourself." With another bow of his head to the family, he vanished from sight for a moment to make himself a fresh cup of tea.

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Tue Aug 21, 2012 8:48 pm

"Impressive. I have friends that work in teams similar to your rank except with Alkahestry. One of them took in our dear daughter here when she was much younger." Ayden nodded slowly, knowing well of the alkahestrical advisors to the emperor himself. He hadn't had the good fortune to meet any; even a few hours of their time could have increased the potency of his Necrosis array tenfold. Hmm... perhaps a visit would be in order during his tenure in Xing-

No. The assassin stopped himself from getting onto that train of thought. He was here for Jeu-Hee. And not just that; for the two of them. He couldn't let himself walk off on selfish, power-hungry tangents like that. With a smile and a brave face, he nodded and let the interrogations continue. "I went of my own free will papa. And besides, Dr. Wong helped you out greatly with your own work." Smiling, he nodded again, Jeu-Hee having told him of just where Ms. Foxy had originated. He didn't mind. It was good that she openly embraced alchemy and alkahestry. Anyone who didn't wouldn't stand much of a future with Ayden - let alone marriage.

"As day's often do. She came back quite giddy and soaked despite the cuts on her palms." Ayden arched an eyebrow and looked towards his fiancé, rubbing her hands and flashing her a cheeky smile as she flushed bright pink. "母!" She exclaimed in a foreign language shortly and sharply, and, quickly, he joined in with the chuckles and let the full force of the smile penetrate through, speaking slowly.

"Is that so?" They'd switched back to Xingese; the continual mishmash of languages was starting to confuse and disorient him. And he'd considered himself a linguist and a scholar! Regardless, it was good to be around intelligent company for once. The military up at Briggs had tacticians few and far between; and whilst Reila, Murazar, and Daigoro were all far from idiots, he couldn't indulge himself in true discussions like these, even if it was his fiancé's parents interrogating him on such a level.

Then the worst thing that could happen came to be. The door rung. And to Ayden's horror, watching every step of the way, Jeu-Hee rose to her feet, bubbly as ever, to answer it.

Oh. Oh... shit.

Ayden was now alone in the room with his fiancé's parents. This was not good. Slowly, their brows furrowed, and with their daughter's absence, they became ferocious investigators, with stares that could pierce the hull of a battleship and words sharper than knives with edges a molecule thick. He braced himself for the oncoming storm of questions-

"Well, I don't think this needs to be a full interrogation, we aren't that intense!" Ayden blinked. Well, maybe that was a good sign. "So, Ayden, Jeu-Hee also mentioned that you take some assassination work as well besides your military. What exactly does that entail?" Or... maybe it wasn't. If the assassin had been drinking anything, he would have just spat it out in a vicious spray all over his fiancé's parents, sitcom-style. His eyes widened, and he looked to Jeu-Hee's tiny frame brushing over to the door as he struggled to keep his balance, feeling his knees going weak. She had told them!? Was she MAD?!

"I, uhm," For the first instance in a very long time, Ayden Derocha was totally and entirely speechless. He gulped, swallowing down the lump in his throat. Well, the cat was out of the bag. On the bright side, it would save some awkward conversations later if he had to kill her grandmother or something... that was a joke. He hoped. "The majority of my work comes from contacts inside the Amestrian military. I just... mop up the undesirables, in that case." He paused. That was probably a bad way of putting it. A way that would leave them thinking "Well, what about the others?" "It's a sideline occupation, really. My mainstay is my military work." That was... something of a lie. But it would suffice. He was an assassin before a military man; or, he had been. He'd joined Amestris to help bolster his resource pools. Granted, he had forged ties within and ascended so quickly that he'd absorbed part of the facade; it had become who he was. So... in truth, the assassin wasn't entirely sure where he stood between assassinations and military research - though he knew he'd choose Jeu-Hee above both in a heartbeat.

"You didn't have a contract for our daughter, did you?" Ayden blinked. Well... her father was certainly brusque. No beating around the bush there. At least he could appreciate that. He did have to resort to scratching his head slowly, before releasing his hand and shaking it vigorously, with a chuckle.

"No sir," He stated quickly. "I met Jeu-Hee whilst I was taking some personal time in Xing." Ayden looked over to the door as she reached up to unlock and answer it, a gentle smile slipping onto his face. "And I know now..." Memories of their engagement, unorthodox as it was, flitted in front of his eyes. "...that there couldn't possibly be a soul in the world that wanted to hurt her. And if there was, I'd protect her with every last ounce of my being." Slowly, his gaze fell back down upon his parents, and inclined his head. "I hope you can accept me for my occupation. All I ask is that you don't let it define me; think of me as the man marrying your daughter rather than a man who kills for money."

In that truly defining moment for Ayden, with sparks and shows of redemption on the horizon in the form of his bubbly Xingese fiancé, Jeu-Hee opened the door. "You are Jeu-Hee Han if I am not mistaken, yes?" And in stepped a man who inadvertently shattered the beauty of that scene, whether his fiancé's parents appreciated it or not. The voice was blurred; and Ayden couldn't see the source. Not until he peered his head in.

"Forgive the interruption, I just-" Mr. Han quickly cut off the long-haired man in his mid-thirties, immediately rising to his feet. Ayden sat back and simply watched the scene unfolding, taking a deep breath and glad that the subject had swiftly been changed. "Wei Zhao? Wei Zhao Han?" Old friend? Ayden took a deep breath as he felt Jeu-Hee clench his hand again, and smiled back down towards her, extending another to draw her closer and gently rub up and down her back.

"As I live and breathe. How are you doing Jun? It's been years!" Old friend! Right on the money! Ayden had never felt more like the intervention of a random stranger than now. It was all a touch confusing, but his heart was quickly slowing... surprisingly loud beneath the flower-print garb he'd taken to. "I do apologize, I wasn't expecting to see this man today. Mei, Ayden, this is Wei Zhao Han. He was a childhood friend of mine who was the son of the-" It was a constant labyrinth of interjections and cut-offs, with Wei seeming to take the lead. Mei was apparently just as confused as he was, with Jeu-Hee being a runner-up. "A pleasure to meet both of you. I have indeed interrupted something and I do apologize. As Clan Leader I wished to visit the extended family of my own, especially with everything that has just happened. I'll go get myself some tea if thats alright."

Not having had time to make his introduction, Ayden simply inclined his head in Wei's direction. The man seemed to be in his mid-thirties, and personable enough, with the assassin wondering just how Jeu-Hee's father had known him, being at least five or ten years his senior... or maybe his chronic hair-greying was just getting the better of him. Hell, the murderer wasn't one to speak in that regard, with his hair already far paler than anyone's, Jeu-Hee's parents included. "Of course. Help yourself." As Wei scuttled off to pour himself some tea, Ayden took an intake of breath and smiled.

"If you'd like to catch up, Mr. Han, I don't mind at all if you want to do this another time." Ayden was wording things delicately. He didn't want to seem like he was shying away from questioning; though knowing today's luck, even with the sudden appearance of Wei, Jun would probably take it as such. So he did all he could; he looked down to Jeu-Hee, and smiled, rubbing his lithe fingers over her petite hands once more and giving her that reassuring look that told her "everything will be alright in the end" - even if he was a little sceptical of how chaotic things had gotten himself.

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Sun Aug 26, 2012 11:40 pm

Well so far so good, Ayden and her father were managing to discuss things rather easily so that should normally point in good directions, right? Her cheeks were still flushed from her mothers comment, her fiance's smile doing nothing to make it go away any faster. She puffed out her cheeks like a chipmunk and pouted a bit, looking down so shyly as embarrassment wanted to explode out of her. Did her mom really have to say just how happy she had been?!?!?! Aw geez....... She tried to tell herself that it was a parents job to make their kid embarrassed, but it didn't really help her relax any or calm down. The only thing that really kept her grounded was the sensation of Ayden's hands rubbing her own. "Is that so?" Her mother only chuckled and nodded with a small little smile as she stared at her daughter, glancing to her husband whom was also smirking. "Yes. We were quite confused until she explained."

Jeu-Hee had to sigh as she went to answer the door, taking deep, calming breaths as she turned the knob to see who it was. It was a man dressed in purple robes and hair that spiked upwards towards the sky in its ponytail. He had some scruff upon his chin, and very distinctive blue-green eyes that startled her in a Xingese face. It was like how her eyes often surprised people since it was rare for a Xingese person to have anything other than brown eyes. She guessed that it was her fathers genetics since he had hazel eyes, but who knew for sure. "Can I help you?" She asked him with her usual sweet smile, tilting her head slightly since she had no clue at all who he was. "Yes you can! My name is Wei Zhao Han, are you... Let me think... No don't tell me..." Han? His last name was Han? Then... He must be a part of their clan then! She hadn't gotten a chance to meet anyone else from their clan so this was rather exciting! She waited patiently as he was thoughtful for a moment, blinking twice as he seemed to catch his thought. "You are Jeu-Hee Han if I am not mistaken, yes?"

She nodded once with a brighter smile upon her lips, now really curious why he was visiting them. After all, hadn't her father told her that the rest of her clan lived in a village that was a decent distance away? Oh. Ayden... She couldn't help but glance back worriedly towards the living room. She had left him alone with her parents. Oh but they wouldn't eat him alive! "Yes I am. You said your last name was Han? What brings you here?" So she shouldn't be too worried at all about it. He could manage, and it would be good for them to bond without her there. "What brings... OH right! I'm, well, your clan leader. Is it alright if I come in? I hope I'm not interrupting anything." Wh-What?! Jeu-Hee's eyes grew wide as she stared at the man in utter shock, immediately bowing out of habit when she encountered someone of higher status than her. "Aiya! Please excuse me sir! I... we... Um..." Oh Ancestors she was being such a blundering fool right now!! If only she were calmer before all this, then maybe she wouldn't be such a goof! But he was chuckling, the door shutting quietly behind him. "It's alright child. Do rise, I'm not THAT important. Where is he now..." As she straightened up, he patted her on the shoulder, blinking a couple of times as she stared in wonderment after him. Her clan leader... Here.... Now of all times.... Aiya....

MEANWHILE IN THE ROOM...

Her parents stared at him with curiosity about his answer, her father a bit more serious than her mother was at this point. "I, uhm," Mei Han's expression softened as she could see how nervous the boy was, her thumb stroking her husbands hand to which his features also seemed to relax. Perhaps he was being a little hard on the man. "The majority of my work comes from contacts inside the Amestrian military. I just... mop up the undesirables, in that case." Jun Han nodded slowly, taking a moment to roll the words over in his mind. "It's a sideline occupation, really. My mainstay is my military work." "I see then. Jeu-Hee had work like that as well when she was still with the facility. They were quite pleased with how talented she was." Her mother spoke, looking to her husband for confirmation. "Yes, they were. I was also relieved when they assured me that my daughter wasn't just a tool to them."

But back to the more pressing question on Jun's mind, had the man encountered his daughter because of his secondary job? "No sir," He breathed in relief and seemed to relax further, pushing his glasses further up on his nose as he listened to Ayden continue, "I met Jeu-Hee whilst I was taking some personal time in Xing." Mei almost commented, but they both fell silent and merely watched as he looked towards where their daughter was talking with whomever was at the door, both instantly recognizing the affection that was inside his features. "And I know now..." The Han parents began to smile softly, any worries they might have held over this slowly beginning to fade away. "...that there couldn't possibly be a soul in the world that wanted to hurt her. And if there was, I'd protect her with every last ounce of my being." They met his gaze as he focused back upon them, the two of them already making up their minds even as he finished his thought, his words only solidifying it further, "I hope you can accept me for my occupation. All I ask is that you don't let it define me; think of me as the man marrying your daughter rather than a man who kills for money."

Mei and Jun looked at each other, neither one needing to say anything as they turned back to him, Jun being the first to speak. "Well, I can see that I can trust her in your hands. You were there for her when she needed it most, and you both pulled through shining for the brighter." "Yes, and besides, our daughter used to be an assassin as well. We wouldn't judge you because of that. Everyone does what they need to do. So-"

"Forgive the interruption, I just-"

Jun looked up at the voice, his brows instantly furrowing as his hazel eyes focused upon the newcomer. Aaand shock instantly flooded his features. "Wei Zhao? Wei Zhao Han?"[/i] Jeu-Hee walked in after Wei Zhao and quietly sat down next to Ayden, her hand slipping within his own. She still couldn't believe that her clan leader was here! What had brought him? Were matters serious? "As I live and breathe. How are you doing Jun? It's been years!" She had never seen her father like this before, and she certainly knew he did not talk too much about their clan. It wasn't like it was due to bad memories or anything, he just never did. Maybe he didn't see the need to? "I do apologize, I wasn't expecting to see this man today. Mei, Ayden, this is Wei Zhao Han. He was a childhood friend of mine who was the son of the-" She looked up at Ayden and smiled back to him, leaning her head against his shoulder as she felt his hand run along her body. Mmm... It had such a soporific effect upon her, like a cat getting petted even though she was blended with a fox instead. Perhaps it was just an animal thing? She had no idea.

Mei, on the other hand, was watching with a mixture of amusement, confusion, and surprise. She had heard her husband talk about Wei Zhao a bit, but she had never gotten the chance to meet the clan that he hailed from. "A pleasure to meet both of you. I have indeed interrupted something and I do apologize. As Clan Leader I wished to visit the extended family of my own, especially with everything that has just happened. I'll go get myself some tea if thats alright." Jeu-Hee nodded, her mother nodded, and it was her father who seemed at a loss for the moment before he finally also nodded. Jun walked back to the couch and sat down, gesturing towards the kitchen for Wei to go to. "Of course. Help yourself." And so Wei Zhao left, Jeu-Hee's green gaze following after for a moment before looking up to her fiance. "If you'd like to catch up, Mr. Han, I don't mind at all if you want to do this another time." Eh? But she saw the look in his eyes and she could only smile, forcing herself to resist kissing him at that particular moment for her parents sake. Oooo, but she wanted to so terribly!

Jun blinked twice and smiled to them, chuckling embarrassedly since he had gotten so distracted from the matters at hand. "Oh no, thats not necessary. I get the feeling he'll be staying in the city for a while. Unless you'd prefer we continue at a later time?" He asked, glancing to his wife for her thoughts on the matter. Mei only smiled and stared at her daughter sitting there so happily next to the man she was to marry, knowing that this was what was right for her child. "I am happy with what I have seen and heard, but I certainly would enjoy getting to know you better Ayden. We certainly wouldn't think you rude if you would prefer to finish this another time." Jeu-Hee was in awe, he must have done well with her parents. She looked up to her love and tilted her head a little more into his shoulder, feeling his warmth beneath his shirt. "Maybe he could even be the priest at our wedding! That would be cool, wouldn't it?" She asked with a bright smile, already able to picture it in her mind. Though..... EEEEEE!!! She always got so giddy when she imagined the scene!!!!!

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Wed Aug 29, 2012 8:57 pm

"Oh no, thats not necessary. I get the feeling he'll be staying in the city for a while. Unless you'd prefer we continue at a later time?" Almost immediately after the older Mr. Han finished shaking his head, Ayden burst into a similar motion in response, smiling and letting a chuckle slowly seep through as he grasped Jeu-Hee's hand.

"Of course not, I'm perfectly happy to keep on with your questions," He looked down into those deep green pools she called eyes, and smiled. "Infact," Ayden spoke softly, turning back with an almost challenging glance. "I'd encourage you to." Confident enough that he'd nailed it so far - especially with what he'd said when his fiancé was absent, the assassin thought he could more or less deal with it. By God, was he lucky that her parents were so open-minded; the fact that she had also been an assassin, which, fortunately, he already knew, did help ease the transition a touch.

"I am happy with what I have seen and heard, but I certainly would enjoy getting to know you better Ayden. We certainly wouldn't think you rude if you would prefer to finish this another time." The warmth of Jeu-Hee's head slowly burrowing upwards into his shoulder served only to comfort and reassure the silver-haired General as he shook his head politely towards Mrs. Han with another smile.

"It's entirely up to you, Mr. and Mrs. Han. As I said, I'm an open book," Ayden looked back to Jeu-Hee with another calm look on his face. He was happy that his fiancé's parents thus far liked him. He was happy that they more or less gave their blessing for the pair's union. But what the assassin was most happy about was how peaceful he felt here, under this roof, in this quaint living room his bride-to-be had grown up in. A place of no violence. Even carrying two measly pistols felt wrong - not as if that would stop him, though. Old habits die hard, and this was a habit older than time itself... to say the least.

"I've enjoyed our meeting so far, but..." The silver-haired man looked to the kitchen, Wei clattering around within as he apparently made himself a cup of tea. He had seemed reasonable enough. If a touch... odd. "...I know what's like more than anyone to have an old friend pop in out of the blue." With a smile, he looked to the others. "Perhaps he could join us, if he wants? If he's the clan leader as you say, then..." Ayden looked to Jeu-Hee, nodding slowly. "...it can't hurt for him to get to know the pair of us, right?"

"Maybe he could even be the priest at our wedding! That would be cool, wouldn't it?" Ayden chuckled lightly. Already his bride was fretting and hypothesising about every little thing, plotting out their wedding in minute detail. The assassin had heard scary stories of brides before their big days; just how on-edge they are... looking off into the window of the living room, he thought it strange. How that whenever he'd heard those stories, he'd never imagined that all this time later, he'd find himself here.

But Ayden nodded. From the assassin's analytical first impression, which had kicked in despite his attempts to turn the profiling sensors off for an hour or two, he'd picked up that Wei seemed like a good enough man, and they didn't have a minister - or appropriate equivalent - yet. Given that the assassin's family was practically non-existent, even more so with the recent loss of his surrogate father, he had obliged his love altogether when she had said she wanted a traditional Xingese wedding.

Heart had been a man of culture, too; and as unsure as he was that the man would have appreciated Ayden tying himself to a peg, inside he did know that the old, xenophobic, grumpy cynic of a librarian would have loved Jeu-Hee. She was intelligent, kind, and stronger than she looked; together, the pair were perfect, an unsuspecting duo of unreasonably dangerous strength. And now they were going to get married. The assassin winced at the thought of their possible children. They would conquer half of the globe, given the train of logic thus far.

The man had long-since passed, even unfortunately enough moments before the man had a chance to admit his love for the small Xingese girl; his hand traced back over hers, gently thumbing over her knuckles and stroking against her oh-so-soft skin, interlocking with her palm and shuffling just to keep the heat and action going. It was the only intimacy they could have in front of this audience, but he didn't mind, so long as she was there. A smile cropped onto his face. Yes. Heart would have liked her. Just a shame he never got to meet her... and never would.

And he would have enjoyed a traditionalist wedding, even from a glance, so it seemed that the late ex-assassin and scholar had given just about as much of a blessing as he could muster, the young boy's biological father or not. But a Xingese wedding... it was good. It was a chance for the assassin to indulge himself further into the culture he was so openly stepping into. And this time, Ayden wasn't afraid of the possibility of part of him being absorbed by something else, so desperately protective of his identity as he usually was. No. In fact, somehow...

...he openly welcomed it.

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:32 pm

Now where was that tea..... The young clan leader wandered about his childhoods friend kitchen and quickly pulled together a kettle, water, and a cup for his tea. While it was boiling, he went rather calmly through their cabinets in search of tea leaves. Normally people would feel some sort of weirdness going through their friends things, but he didn't. Not when it was Jun. Or maybe it was because Wei himself was just so laid back that he couldn't quite bring himself to worry about it. The one thing he did feel slightly weird about, however, was the fact he was inadvertently eavesdropping on the business occurring in the other room with that Ayden fellow, Jeu-Hee, and her parents. Apparently he had come at a rather... delicate time. At least, he would call it delicate. Generally when one was meeting parents for the first time and discussing marriage it was a delicate situation. Then again, this was Jun! Although.... he hadn't exactly gotten the chance to see him as a father. He had heard that changes things rather drastically. Maybe he would find out eventually a few years down the road or something.

He could hear the family, or families perhaps, in the other room whispering about the situation he had now caused. "Of course not, I'm perfectly happy to keep on with your questions. Infact, I'd encourage you to." Huh. A spunky young man. That was good to see in this day and age. Well, perhaps he shouldn't linger too long here. Jun was right, he could always come by another time. What with the events that were happening in the world, he was definitely going to be here for a while. He had to speak with the new emperor upon many a subject and he certainly wanted to be sure that the Han clan was represented. The world was changing. The kettle began to whistle, signaling that the water was done, his hand reaching to turn off the stove. He began to hum a tune softly to himself as he set up the tea leaves, pouring the hot water through it so that the liquid began to turn a slight green. Mmm... green tea..... "...it can't hurt for him to get to know the pair of us, right?" Hm? What was this? Wei paused as he stepped away from the counter, tilting his head slightly at these fresh words.

"Maybe he could even be the priest at our wedding! That would be cool, wouldn't it?" He burst out laughing as he came back into the living room, leaning in the doorway as Jun also began to chuckle. "Wei? The priest? I don't know-" "Dear, it would be appropriate." Jun snorted and adjusted his glasses, his laughter certainly out of amusement as opposed to potentially thinking it a bad idea. "No, it would be appropriate. I just-" "I would certainly be willing to as amusing a mental image as that is." He called with a continued chuckle, sipping at his tea before stepping more into the room. Jun smirked, the aging man almost seeming to grow younger the more that he was around his old friend. "No one ever asks me back home, and I may as well given the situation."

He paused before slowing to a stop on the one side of the coffee table, staring at the two couples as a thought hit him. He grinned like an excited school boy as he turned towards the young ambassador and her fiance. "Though, my one requirement is that I make the fireworks." Jun now seemed to be a little bit concerned as he sat up a little bit, sitting forward on the couch as his hand remained on his wife's knee. "Now Wei, I don't know if thats really necessary or advised. I would hope you don't use anything too.... excessive." He commented while glancing towards his daughter who did seem interested at this. Sweet girl that she was. "Oh Jun don't worry yourself! There won't be any dragons or anything I promise. The twins aren't here." He pointed out with a smirk as he sipped some more of his tea. Jun paused to consider a memory before chuckling, sitting back next to his wife as he nodded twice slowly.

"This is true. They aren't here. Well, in any case, Ayden," He now turned to the young couple, now quite content in all that was happening. "What are your plans for the two of you? You are centered in Amestris after all, while she is here. Are you planning on remaining in Amestris or move here? Or Jeu-Hee, what about you? Is there something we should know?" He asked the two children, gesturing with his other hand for Wei to sit. The clan leader did decide to, leaning back in the chair to listen. After all, he certainly couldn't leave when the prospect of getting to make fireworks was at hand! He never got to make fireworks ever anymore. Although... he was going more important work.

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Fri Sep 07, 2012 3:45 pm

After a touch of conference between the three in the room Ayden's senior, Wei finally made a bold statement, having since re-entered, clutching a small mug of green tea that filled the room with a deep, soothing aroma. "No one ever asks me back home, and I may as well given the situation." Slowly, the assassin looked to his fiancé, and gently inclined his head. If she wanted him to, and could make the decision now... it was one less thing for her to spend days fretting over when the wedding's date loomed overhead. His job, as the groom, was simply to make hers, as the bride, easier.

"I'd be absolutely fine with you doing so, Mr. Zhao," Unsure of how to address him given both status and his pseudo-clan name, Ayden simply brushed ahead, hoping he'd been formal enough. "I think a formal Xingese wedding would be good for everyone present, and a chance for me to embrace the culture of a country I've long-since adored." That was truth in its purest form. Ever since his first trip to Xing, where old man Wu had healed his eyes, the country had been something of a spectacle for him. The archaic skyline of Xi'an had been the first thing he saw when he opened those eyes for the first time in over a dozen years... and it held a special place in the assassin's heart, even as cold as some branded it.

"Though, my one requirement is that I make the fireworks." Ayden blinked and cocked his head. The man seemed a tad quirky, but... fireworks? Remembering the weight of the Children beneath his shirt, the assassin reconsidered. He had a penchant for things which went bang, so did Wei. Though Wei's weren't lethal. He hoped.

"I have no qualms with that, but the decision is up to..." He looked to Jeu-Hee with the most comforting smile he could muster. "Well, my beautiful bride, of course." He squeezed her hand a tad more and rubbed his thumb over the top of her palm. He knew the prospect of being married and a wedding did excite him, a lot, but compared to how he was, Jeu-Hee had to be either on some form of medication or doing ancient qi exercises to ensure she didn't just explode with eager anticipation.

"Now Wei, I don't know if thats really necessary or advised. I would hope you don't use anything too.... excessive." ...excessive? This was starting to sound- "Oh Jun don't worry yourself! There won't be any dragons or anything I promise. The twins aren't here." Dragons?! The explosion fanatic in Ayden grinned at the premise, but the rational man - who reminded him he was in the presence of his love's parents - quickly stomped it out. More out of apathetic curiosity than anything, he pressed further.

"...dragons?"

His question was brushed over with a quick statement from Jun. "This is true. They aren't here. Well, in any case, Ayden," Wait, wait, wait. Dragons? He still wanted to- "What are your plans for the two of you? You are centered in Amestris after all, while she is here. Are you planning on remaining in Amestris or move here? Or Jeu-Hee, what about you? Is there something we should know?" ...well, okay, maybe that did take precedent.

As he went back over Jun's words to fully process them, still a tad stunned that they not only knew, but openly welcomed the fact he was an assassin... the currently-calm maniac mused with a slow hum. What was their plan? His work was... not exactly something that could be stopped. Not the assassination side of it, anyway. Heart hadn't retired until he'd reached his mid-fifties, and not for lack of conviction - the man, whilst alive, had still been a dab hand with a pistol.

"I'm..." He really needed to confer with Jeu-Hee about this, but... the assassin cleared his throat and got to talking. "I'm not quite sure. I'd like to maintain my post at Briggs for a couple of years or so; though I know Jeu-Hee's occupation does demand she's in Xi'an on a regular basis..." Ayden hummed. "I apologise, Mr. Han, but I think the jury may well still be out on that one. Perhaps we could try and purchase a house close to the border, and both come back for weekends." Five days a week away from his future wife would be the five bleakest days of the week and five he wasn't sure he'd be able to muster. Five where she'd be alone. Five where he'd abandoned her. But five that he wasn't quite sure about yet. "Or, I do have an apartment I've got my sights set on in North City."

The assassin shrugged, smiling as pleasantly as he could between Wei, Jun, Mei, and his fiancé. "After all, we can't tell yet what the future holds, can we?" An age-old adage that the murderer seemed to live by.

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Sun Sep 16, 2012 9:52 pm

Her father began to laugh at her suggestion, or chortling would be the more appropriate word, but still! Why was he chortling? That would be appropriate right? [color=orchid]"I would certainly be willing to as amusing a mental image as that is." /color] Why was that so amusing? "No one ever asks me back home, and I may as well given the situation." A grin quickly found its way to her delicate features, already beginning to look up at Ayden as he was slowly turning to look at her. That would be so exciting! Having her clan leader be their priest! And that certainly meant she didn't have to worry about that anymore either. "I'd be absolutely fine with you doing so, Mr. Zhao," For a brief second, she wondered why he didn't say Mr. Han, but then again that would be confusing with her father sitting right there. So it worked. "I think a formal Xingese wedding would be good for everyone present, and a chance for me to embrace the culture of a country I've long-since adored." She knew this to be true, for she remembered when they first met when he expressed his love for her country. It made her swell still to hear that, her hand tightening about his as she managed by some miracle to contain all the excitement bubbles that grew inside her bubbly self. "I would love it if you did Clan Leader!"

Mei smiled and nodded as well, glancing between her daughter with her fiance, and Wei. "That sounds delightful to me. I also do enjoy seeing an appreciation for a culture that is not your own in a person." The last statement was directed at Ayden, which was the absolute truth. Her daughter hadn't just gotten that love out of nowhere after all! She knew her mother would certainly like that about him! Not that she hadn't been positive they wouldn't accept him, but then again.... OOOOO WHATEVER! It was fine now! "Though, my one requirement is that I make the fireworks." Yip? Jeu-Hee blinked twice at that request, but giggled, especially at her fiance's reaction to the oddness of the request. So her clan leader had a love of fireworks it seemed. "I have no qualms with that, but the decision is up to..." Huh? She tilted her head as she turned her gaze back to Ayden, blinking even as she smiled sweetly up to him. "Well, my beautiful bride, of course." Huh? Oh yeah... it was up to her wasn't it.... OH CRAP THE WHOLE WEDDING PLANNING WAS UP TO HER WASN'T IT?! Aiya, aiya, what was she going to do?!?!?!?! Shock registered as she was overwhelmed for a moment by just what exactly all of her responsibilities were, unable to think of an answer for a couple of moments until she really focused upon Ayden's smile and she knew, it would be fine. "I certainly don't mind-" "Now Wei, I don't know if thats really necessary or advised. I would hope you don't use anything too.... excessive." Yip? "Oh Jun don't worry yourself! There won't be any dragons or anything I promise. The twins aren't here." Twins? What twins? What was going on? Had Wei designed a firework with dragons?

"...dragons?" "Now that sounds exciting!" She perked up a bit, now really intrigued to hear THIS story. She did love fireworks.

But her father wouldn't let them dwell. "This is true. They aren't here. Well, in any case, Ayden," Hm? What was her father going to ask now? "What are your plans for the two of you? You are centered in Amestris after all, while she is here. Are you planning on remaining in Amestris or move here? Or Jeu-Hee, what about you? Is there something we should know?" Oh boy.... She almost wanted to yell at her father for asking that since not even they had gotten to talk about it to each other yet! Her eyes lowered to her lap, sliding over a little to their clasped hands sitting there so comfortable. She certainly couldn't go anywhere for very long, not unless she was ordered to or had leave to. And she would never ask him to give up his career in the military for her, not when she certainly give up her obligation either. And she knew far better than to ever try to give advice on his assassin's occupation either. She knew better than to do so. Especially not when her own assassin career had revolved around government contracts, each hit explained to her so she wouldn't ever have to worry. Not like she worried on that battlefield...

But that was in the past now, and right now she was discussing her future with her fiance and parents. "I'm..." She raised her eyes up to her love as he began to speak, herself curious to see how he would answer her father. "I'm not quite sure. I'd like to maintain my post at Briggs for a couple of years or so; though I know Jeu-Hee's occupation does demand she's in Xi'an on a regular basis..." She nodded to that, "I apologise, Mr. Han, but I think the jury may well still be out on that one. Perhaps we could try and purchase a house close to the border, and both come back for weekends." Heh, it was a good answer and it was the truth. Better to be honest than give a half answer that may be incorrect. The border was still so far apart from where either of them had to be during the week. No... They would just have to wait and get leave for a week or so of absence so that they could see each other that way. "We haven't really had a chance to talk about it papa. But for now we can just take leaves when we can to visit each other. It's how we've survived so far, so it could work." She watched how her parents nodded slowly, accepting their answers with a quiet look to each other. Wei was quiet off to the side, merely watching them.

"After all, we can't tell yet what the future holds, can we?" See, when she saw him smile like that, she could almost forget that he killed people for a living. Not that she had ever seen him on the job, but still! Her mother chuckled, "This is very true. Well, as long as you take care of each other that is what mattered. When your father and I first dated, we lived on opposite sides of town which made it quite the commute for either of us!" Her father began to chuckle himself as he looked fondly to his wife, "Sometimes taking a bike all the way back at some odd hour of the morning." As her parents had their moment, Jeu-Hee gave Ayden's hand a gentle squeeze, the smile upon her lips gentle as she looked up to him once more. Was that going to be them in the years to come? She snuggled her head against his shoulder affectionately, knowing that no matter what, they would find their way.

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Mon Sep 17, 2012 5:04 pm

"I would love it if you did Clan Leader!" Ayden smiled and smoothed his thumb over her hand again and again, just happy that she was happy. Because, in the end, that reciprocating of mutual contentment was all he'd ever wanted. Just for her to enjoy his presence and decisions as much as he did hers. Just to even out the balance so they loved each other just enough.

Ayden stayed silent and listened as Mei spoke again. The room was quickly turning from a humble meeting into a wild conference, everyone simply waiting for their turn to voice their opinions as the lovers stayed contentedly alongside each other, the assassin smiling as he looked into those deep, emerald pools. "That sounds delightful to me. I also do enjoy seeing an appreciation for a culture that is not your own in a person."

The assassin nodded. Culture was something he tried to absorb, and something he often had to given his occupation. With proximity to the border, so many Drachman refugees came flooding into North City that it wasn't even funny; and his wandering for the assassination side of things consistently left him in new and exotic scenarios. Thus, he was open to any culture. Hence his being a polyglot; he almost inhaled language, ancient or modern. That was why Gelemorté and La Cerisé had interested him so much; culture that differed so vastly. Even if the monarch of the former was an absolute moron.

Xing, however, had long-since been keeper a special place in his heart. It was the first conscious sight he could recall since getting his eyes repaired. Just wave upon wave of sand on the outskirts of the Great Desert, gazing upon the empirical Xi'an in the distance, grinning, a pale teenager on the horizon, as Wu said to him the only words he'd ever needed to hear. "Your father has given you a great gift. The gift of sight. So do not make him worry. Walk your chosen path with enlightenment and understanding, and let those eyes not see simply that which you wish for them to, but everything in front of you."

They were the first Xingese words he'd ever heard, save for Heart off-handedly reciting some poems or idioms. And all of the bookwork had paid off; Geoffrey Heart had successfully taught him his second language. Amestrian came far later. In a way, Ayden rejected his tainted bloodline from his biological father; in a way, his Amestrian half was truly non-existent and replaced with his Xingese half. But he had a dedication to his country, and many within were pleasant human beings, and tolerable. So he hadn't forsaken it. Not just yet.

"Now that sounds exciting!" His fiancé's squealing brought him back down to Earth with a smile. He rubbed her hand again, remaining stoic and diving in to steal a taunting little peck from her cheek with a dumb grin. God, he felt so helplessly bound to his love; but for some reason, it was all fine, this loss of control had all been willing. If, a year and a half ago, someone had told him he'd fall in love and be as detestable as this, he would have spurned them away with maniacal laughter and a few bullets. And yet... the pair of them had come so far. "We haven't really had a chance to talk about it papa. But for now we can just take leaves when we can to visit each other. It's how we've survived so far, so it could work."

Ayden nodded confidently as his fiancé reinforced his point; the pair of them still had, obviously, issues that they had to work through. But this was possible. Hell, not even possible; it was beyond probable. "I have absolute faith in the pair of us. We'll sort it out." His statement was bold, and slowly he nodded. Not often did the assassin make such claims; only when sealing the deal for a kill did he state something with such certainty. The only thing he had held belief and effort in than his killing was his love for a certain short Xingese chimera ambassador.

"This is very true. Well, as long as you take care of each other that is what mattered. When your father and I first dated, we lived on opposite sides of town which made it quite the commute for either of us!" Ayden smiled, and compared the elder Hans' dilemma to theirs. What was so different from a commute from one side of town to the other to a simple plane journey from North to Xi'an? The principle and motive was both still the same. "Sometimes taking a bike all the way back at some odd hour of the morning." And he'd be damned if the effort he was going to put in wouldn't be, too.

"The things we do for love..." Ayden murmured, trailing off and staring down to Jeu-Hee, before sighing and finally settling back against the couch, smiling up at his fiancé's parents, confident enough he'd nailed it as his stupid-looking Hawaiian shirt almost clung to his frame. "Is there anything else you would like to ask me, Mr. and Mrs. Han?"

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Wed Sep 19, 2012 2:05 am

"I would love it if you did Clan Leader!" Wei hadn't honestly been quite sure what the young bride might say, but he was quite pleased to hear her enthusiastic answer. Well then! That practically settled it! He made a mental note to ask them whenever the wedding was happening so that he could ensure he'd be free that day. Though, considering where he would be most of the time during the day, he wouldn't exactly be able to forget. "That sounds delightful to me. I also do enjoy seeing an appreciation for a culture that is not your own in a person." Now where in the world had Jun managed to find himself such a delightful wife? Heh, it almost made him feel like the odd man out here (which he was). Married couple on the left, soon-to-be newlyweds on the right.... And he remained quite content in single-dom there in the middle. He had his people, there was no sense in worrying about such pressures unless the right kind of gal came along. He certainly didn't ponder too long and hard about what he might be looking for in a woman, though when amongst his people he certainly saw some things he liked! Like Vien's mothers melon bread.... Ohhhh if he could find a woman that could bake like her, he'd be set. Hrm... and probably not mind fire, explosives, or his smoking. Meh, life would lead him wherever it would.

A traditional Xing wedding though... Hrm... There HAD to be a law or ten that regarded fireworks. He should ask the emperor about it whenever he went to the palace. Would that be too odd a thing coming from a Clan Leader offering his fealty and whatnot to their emperor? "Hello sir, I'm leader of the Han clan. Oh, and what are your laws regarding fireworks in the city?" Nothing could possibly go wrong from that scenario, could it? Ohhhhh...... So very many things could. "Now that sounds exciting!" Eh? Oh right! Fireworks and dragons! Yes yes, he would have remained on subject however it was not meant to be. Jun was the leading man here, not him. And he'd be damned if he got in that mans way. His blue-green eyes kept sliding back and forth as the conversation bounced along, lingering for the moment upon the young couple as they expressed their affection. There was a delightful fluttering in his chest at the young love before him, and he felt positively giddy from it! This was what he liked to see in life. Those smiles.

"We haven't really had a chance to talk about it papa. But for now we can just take leaves when we can to visit each other. It's how we've survived so far, so it could work." Ayden was nodding, "I have absolute faith in the pair of us. We'll sort it out." Wei raised an eyebrow slowly at their answers to such a demanding question, his iris' sliding back towards Jun for his reaction. He was quite surprised that his friend had asked such a question of them already, but again, it must be that whole father thing. "This is very true. Well, as long as you take care of each other that is what mattered. When your father and I first dated, we lived on opposite sides of town which made it quite the commute for either of us!" Ho? "Sometimes taking a bike all the way back at some odd hour of the morning." "Now THERE is a story there you must share with me sometime Jun." Wei murmured with a chuckle, sipping at his tea as he fell quiet again.

"The things we do for love..." Aye, wasn't that the truth. Even though Wei hadn't been in many relationships, he had certainly done some nutsy things for his clan. "Is there anything else you would like to ask me, Mr. and Mrs. Han?" "I actually have a question, if I may." Wei interjected, ignoring how the elder had begun to exchange glances. He figured Jun was done for now considering they seemed satisfied and quiet at ease. "This is more for a technicality thing on my part," he began as he scratched the back of his head with a goofy sort of grin. "Ayden, will you be joining our clan once the wedding is completed? I know that the bride typically takes her husbands last name, but given the appreciation for culture here I can't help but wonder if you'd be willing or want to. I'm certainly not going to force you to." Heh, that would make two non-Xingese people he was admitting into his clan within a single day if that were the case. If Ayden did accept, his would be more of a 'fill upon completion of deal' sort of thing. No need to jump the gun after all! He leaned forward a bit now in interest to hear the assassin's answer, his gaze quite intent upon the young man even as his fiance blinked and stared just as her parents were. Oh it was an odd question, though he appreciated how quiet Jun and Mei were about it at the moment.

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Thu Sep 20, 2012 6:23 pm

"I actually have a question, if I may."

Ayden's ears pricked and he turned towards the clan leader; Wei. The source of the voice. That was unusual; this was technically the Hans' time to interview him, but supposing his seniority within the clan and his status as such a good friend of Jun, the assassin didn't want to appear rude and gloss over him. For all he knew, the question could very well provoke an even better response from his fiancé's parents!

"Ayden, will you be joining our clan once the wedding is completed? I know that the bride typically takes her husbands last name, but given the appreciation for culture here I can't help but wonder if you'd be willing or want to. I'm certainly not going to force you to."

That was... overall, a very good question. Ayden blinked to start with, not having fully processed the information. Joining... the clan? He looked from Wei, to Jeu-Hee, then to her parents, then back to her, and spluttered out some noise in surprise. People were trying to blindside him today, weren't they? "I..." He trailed off, before leaning back and truly thinking about it.

He wasn't Xingese, of course, but this didn't seem to be a problem. It was an excellent opportunity to become involved in his future wife's culture and her extended family, and it would provide social status that clanless tourists couldn't achieve. But at the same time, Ayden asked himself, would he have to give up his heritage in order to become an amalgamated part of the Han clan?

He presumed that there was some degree of lenience, but in reality, it was a big decision to make. This would make him spiritually a Xingman, in spite of Cretan and Amestrian blood. Being of Creta originally, plus with Heart hailing from a Londonian lineage, there was an element of home always to be found on the streets of London there; and the patriotic sense of belonging that the Amestrian military had instilled in him during his short tenure with them, plus his rapid ascent through the ranks... he wanted to stay just as much Amestrian and Cretan as he did want to become Xingese.

A sense of identity was one he'd never truly had, a sense of family and a sense of bonding in this way. Of course, his peers and his "father" loved him and appreciated him, but his biological parents had never granted him a family. The name he had was the only thing he'd held onto. It was hollow to begin, a blank slate; the Derochas were just another military family no-one gave two flying fucks about. Now, the name Derocha made scumbags and underworld-dwellers universally shiver for an understanding of finesse and relentlessness when it came to the assassin's forté: slaughter.

The practicality of it wasn't to be disputed. It gave him more reason to take leave to Xing and see Jeu-Hee, and Amestris wouldn't argue; the Lieutenant General was a prime example. Though with his ties to the country, if any future incidents went down, almost immediately, Ayden knew he'd be ousted and ejected from the military like a quick slap to the face, and possibly tortured for information. Of course, he knew he could handle the odd spot of "harsh interrogation", occasionally enjoying it, but it was always better to avoid these events.

It was going to create great diplomatic event and probably end up involving a fair amount of paperwork, but... Ayden figured it was a step worth taking to show his dedication to the entire process and the seriousness of it all: this wedding was no joke. And he knew that if this didn't make any onlookers realise it, then, nothing would. "Yes." His response was short, simple, blunt, and there was no beating around the bush.

But soon came an addendum from the mouth of the silver-haired warrior. "But I want to keep my name." He smiled to himself. It was the only keepsake of a hollow family and a hollow home he still had. And it was him who wanted to return, one day, to Lukas Derocha's door and show all of his achievements, all of these records, done under the putrid, stinking name of that drunkard moron who deserved to asphyxiate, face-down, in a pool of his own venomous blood.

Not only that. The reputation associated with it was too much for him to simply vanish overnight. Though it would possibly help throw the police off... Ayden Derocha was simply too prideful to just release his name like that. "I don't want to change it in the slightest. It's no issue with becoming a Han," He begun to explain. "It's a name I'm quite attached to after twenty-seven years of living with it, for better or worse." The assassin smiled. "Hopefully, that won't be a problem?"

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Tue Sep 25, 2012 7:07 pm

This was so good! See, there was no reason for her to have been so nervous about this at all. It wasn't that she didn't trust her parents to be the awesome people that she knew them to be, she just.... ITWASSONERVEWRACKING!!! But! Everything was going perfectly swimmingly right now so there was no need to worry anymore! Blinking as her clan leader spoke up, she blinked and nuzzled into her fiance, continuously glancing up affectionately at him every time he glanced down to her. He was the best thing that had ever happened to her in all seriousness. Her life was so blessed, and she had no idea how she could ever pray and give thanks enough for it. She had delightful parents, she helped her country, she could become a fox, she had the best fiance ever..... She was so very lucky. "I actually have a question, if I may." Oh yes yes, he was asking a question of Ayden now!


"This is more for a technicality thing on my part," Oh? What sort of technicality? GASP! DID IT HAVE TO DO WITH THE FIREWORKS?! "Ayden, will you be joining our clan once the wedding is completed? I know that the bride typically takes her husbands last name, but given the appreciation for culture here I can't help but wonder if you'd be willing or want to. I'm certainly not going to force you to." Ooooo, that was a good point! How WAS the last name thing going to work? Did she keep her last name, or did she become Jeu-Hee Derocha-- HOMG SHE HAD TO NOT SQUEE!!! The biggest grin spread across her lips as she pictured her name as such, suddenly nuzzling her fiance with renewed love to try to compensate with how giddy she had just gotten. AS if she hadn't been giddy before!

While Ayden was confused, she was positively bubbling beside him, squeezing his hand gently to offer some reassurence to him. "I..." Oh right! She should be more serious about this. After all, this was a rather big deal after all! It was a complete shift in someones name! And that could be a change in who they were, though wait... There was a play.... OH YEAH!! "A rose by any other name would still smell as sweet!"* That was a line! So... in the end did it really matter? Hrm..... She should ponder this another time. "Yes." HE SAID YES! Though, even as Jeu-Hee gazed up with those emerald eyes at him, she could tell there was more to follow it. Her expression softened slightly as she his words flowed from him. "But I want to keep my name." That sounded just about right to her. Ayden Han..... It did sound a bit odd to her, she'd have to admit. "I don't want to change it in the slightest. It's no issue with becoming a Han. It's a name I'm quite attached to after twenty-seven years of living with it, for better or worse." Her clan leader seemed to nod slowly at that, considering Ayden's answer quietly. "Hopefully, that won't be a problem?"

"Clan Leader," She began, now curious what he would have to say about her question as well. "What about me? I mean," She looked up at Ayden once more with her sweet little smile. She knew he would understand no matter what, and honestly.... "I'll always be a Han, but I will probably take on my husbands name as is customary." She finished as her eyes turned back towards Wei, her mind already made up on the matter. She just wanted to know what he would say about it. "You could always keep it as well. It'd be like the Esparians with how they treat names." Her mother added with a warm smile, her husband remaining quiet beside her. Jeu-Hee perked up at that suggestion, "Oh yeah! I hadn't even quite thought of that. I could certainly do that!" Her eyes flittered between her mother, father, Wei, then Ayden, lingering as she gazed upon him. "Does that sound good?"

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Re: Roads Untraveled

Post by Guest on Wed Sep 26, 2012 3:18 pm

"I'll always be a Han, but I will probably take on my husbands name as is customary." Ayden, still smiling, arched his eyebrow at the mention of her taking on his name. Jeu-Hee... Derocha? That didn't... it was... was she... this marriage thing was confusing. He stared at her eagerly, awaiting a response or elaboration.

"You could always keep it as well. It'd be like the Esparians with how they treat names." The elder woman of the family perked up immediately, and Jeu-Hee seemed to like that idea. Jeu-Hee... Han-Derocha? Or Jeu-Hee Derocha-Han? Maybe an amalgamation, a portmanteau of the pair? Derochan? Hanrocha? His mind flew away, and, just in time, his common sense snatched it back and slapped him upside the face, sending him reeling back into reality, slapping the blissful grin from his face.

"I like that idea." He agreed. Keep a sense of where you belong, and a sense of the one you love. And in essence, by joining the Han clan, he was taking on her name, too. No patriarchy, no matriarchy. The pair of them were equal, as they always had been in Ayden's eyes. He kept on smiling at her, rubbing his thumb over and under her hand in strong, reassuring motions.

Ayden looked to Jun. The man seemed quiet and indifferent; arching an eyebrow for but a split-second, he nodded and understood. His name was one that carried weight and reputation in the underworld. To slap his own daughter with such a label was not only dangerous, but in some ways demeaning. He could understand. "Oh yeah! I hadn't even quite thought of that. I could certainly do that!" Even if his fiancé didn't quite.

Those deep emerald pools flew across the room, making express stops to glance at each other, before the glare finally lingered on him. Blue met green and she smiled as she always did. "Does that sound good?" For a moment, he froze, processing all the information, still a tad stunned that things had gone so well; for the obligatory pre-wedding meet-the-parents scene with an assassin, at least.

Then his look of thought cracked down into a pure, warm smile that would endear even the most intelligent. No facade; truth in that smile. Ayden Derocha was happy. "Whatever you want." He muttered. And that was the truth. A loving husband, a car, a home... he looked down to those pale hands beneath the ridiculous Hawaiian shirt. A family?

That was a question that would have to be answered later as he finally broke his grip with Jeu-Hee. The tension had all but dissolved and silence's firm vice-grip had taken the room in full. Jun's quiet voice cracked the lack of the casual chatter, addressing the assassin, and the silver-haired warrior looked straight up to him from below as the man stood up, trying to signal his respect. Well, how about we discuss what comes next hm?"

With a smile, the assassin nodded, got to his feet, and began to follow Jun, stalking out of the room, almost a full foot higher than the man - possibly the only living male in the entire world he was afraid of, considering that his judgement could mean the approval of their marriage - to leave Wei, Mei, and his love alone. Before they finally departed, silver locks of her fell over his shoulder and his neck flexed. Azure eyes twinkled in the Xingese sunlight and he flashed her the most perfect smile before the pair disappeared further into the depths of the house.

[EXIT THREAD]

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Re: Roads Untraveled

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