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Anton La'croix
Tracker

Name : Anton La'croix
Epithet : Screaming Grasshopper
Age : 23
Height : 5'9''
Weight : 186lb
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
World Position : Rear Admiral
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Crew Role : Captain
Devil Fruit : Bug-Bug Fruit, Model: Grasshopper
Haki Level : 6
Hitpoints (HP) : 352
Attack (ATK) : 360
Defense (DEF) : 360
Reflex (RX) : 400
Willpower (WP) : 360
Level : 61
Experience Points : 6116
Quality Score : S
Income Multiplier : +23%; +20% (to all allies)
Berries Berries : 27,734,300
[[bookworm]][[hardboiled]][[berryprinter]]
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Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 445
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Wed Dec 16, 2020 6:43 pm
It wasn't certain just how long Anton had been unconscious. Just that when he awoke, the room was dark. His whole body ached, after effects from the non stop fighting and the damage he had been taking. It took him a moment for his mind to catch up with what had happened.

He had won. Minion Island was under their control.

Anton slowly sat up, looking around the room. This wasn't his room on the Grand Steamer. After his victory, Dr. Black and Celia had moved him to one of the bedrooms in the mansion. He noticed the numerous bandages on his person, no doubt first aid granted by the good doctor.

Well, now he was in control of an island. Where do they go from here?
Yumiko
Tracker

Name : Yumiko
Epithet : Kamaitachi
Age : 26
Height : 5'5'' / 165 cm
Weight : 128 lbs. / 58 kg
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Marine Rank : Petty Officer
Crew Role : First Mate
Devil Fruit : Ita Ita no Mi, Model: Kamaitachi
Haki Level : 3
Hitpoints (HP) : 220
Attack (ATK) : 300
Defense (DEF) : 120
Reflex (RX) : 250
Willpower (WP) : 240
Level : 34
Experience Points : 3438
Quality Score : S+
Income Multiplier : +13%
Berries Berries : 93,166,800
[[baneoftheweak]][[dragonheart]][[childofdestiny]]
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Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 227
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Thu Dec 17, 2020 4:13 am
Shadows covered the murky room like a thick blanket. The beaten furniture was merely vague shapes against the old wallpaper. It was quiet... So quiet that when injured man’s motions made the bed creak ever so softly, the sound sauntered across the whole room. There was a pause. A twitch. Something stirred at the foot of his bed. Slowly a grim, inhuman figure rose from the floor. It was like a messy clump of loose flaps and hanging hair. A pair of eyes lit up with a predatory gleam. Without any warning, it pounced!

“Mashterrrrh!!!”

Yumiko crashed onto the bed with all the grace of an excited dog. Completely disregarding her injuries, she actively sought to tackle and straddle her master. Her strong arms snapped around him like a bear trap, desperately trying to grab him into a tight, warm squeeze. Behind her, a messy pile of Anton’s clothes flopped back onto the floor like an empty shell. They had been keeping her warm during her vigil. Her own uniform had gotten ruined after all. Now only a pair of dark boyshorts and loosely wrapped chest bindings were protecting her dignity. ...Well, what little was left of it anyway.

Once the Captain’s eyes adjusted, he would find himself pinned down beneath his First Mate. Bandages covered her toned body as well. A dried stain of red marked the spot where she had been shot. Her long hair was a disheveled mess, cascading down her back like a white waterfall. Finally her grip loosened enough to let the poor man breathe. He wouldn’t get any personal space, however. Not even if he politely insisted. She sniffled weakly... “Thou had me sho-sho worrhied.” ...And broke into snotty, tearful bawling. Her already slurred words turned utterly incoherent. Every breath carried the unmistakable stench of booze. Several kinds of booze, actually. The smell brought fermented grapes and rubbing alcohol to mind.
Anton La'croix
Tracker

Name : Anton La'croix
Epithet : Screaming Grasshopper
Age : 23
Height : 5'9''
Weight : 186lb
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
World Position : Rear Admiral
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Crew Role : Captain
Devil Fruit : Bug-Bug Fruit, Model: Grasshopper
Haki Level : 6
Hitpoints (HP) : 352
Attack (ATK) : 360
Defense (DEF) : 360
Reflex (RX) : 400
Willpower (WP) : 360
Level : 61
Experience Points : 6116
Quality Score : S
Income Multiplier : +23%; +20% (to all allies)
Berries Berries : 27,734,300
[[bookworm]][[hardboiled]][[berryprinter]]
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Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 445
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Thu Dec 17, 2020 4:48 am
Anton let out a yell of surprise as the woman, barely dressed as she was, came down atop of him, bawling all the while. The pain of having someone slammed atop of him was overshadowed by the surprise he felt. "Yumiko!?" he yelled, more shocked as and concerned rather than angry, "What's gotten into you!?"

As Anton tried to struggle free of his first mate's embrace, he noticed two things. One, she was barely dressed (stop thinking about that Anton!) and two, her breath smelled like the inside of a brewery. He had never suspected Yumiko would drink, but it gave him some understanding why she was now bawling hysterically. As someone who tended to get hysterical himself, he knew this required a delicate touch.

With some effort, he managed to pry her arms off of him, allowing him to sit up, but still leaving her straddling his waist. "I'm fine Yumiko, really. It's ok." he said gently, holding onto her shoulders softly. "Now tell me, what's wrong?"

And why are you utterly hammered?[/color]
Yumiko
Tracker

Name : Yumiko
Epithet : Kamaitachi
Age : 26
Height : 5'5'' / 165 cm
Weight : 128 lbs. / 58 kg
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Marine Rank : Petty Officer
Crew Role : First Mate
Devil Fruit : Ita Ita no Mi, Model: Kamaitachi
Haki Level : 3
Hitpoints (HP) : 220
Attack (ATK) : 300
Defense (DEF) : 120
Reflex (RX) : 250
Willpower (WP) : 240
Level : 34
Experience Points : 3438
Quality Score : S+
Income Multiplier : +13%
Berries Berries : 93,166,800
[[baneoftheweak]][[dragonheart]][[childofdestiny]]
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Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 227
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Thu Dec 17, 2020 8:05 am
When Anton tried to reassure Yumiko, the bawling mess did something unthinkable... She talked back. To her superior officer no less. “Ish not ok! Thou got hurht ‘cush of me!” With nothing to hold, her restless arms flailed as she rambled rapidly. “I failed thou and I wash shupposhed to die forh thy shake...” Her head drooped with the weight of heavy disappointment. “But I’m sthill alive... I hhhate it.” She raised a finger and aimed a weak poke at the man’s chest. “I hate thee.” The pointing finger turned towards her own chest, as if to clarify. “And I hate me.” More poking punctuated her slurred words.

“Why won’t thou hate me ash well? Whyyyy...???”

An awkward hiccup stopped the whining. As the captain had figured out by now, his loyal first mate had been drinking. Heavily. Her body felt far warmer than usual. A rosy coloration painted her pale cheeks. She was gently swaying in place, struggling to keep her balance. Down on the floor, dozens of empty bottles were scattered around. Wine, rum, even sake from her home country... A cocktail potent enough for a giant, not to even mention for a lithe woman. The fact that she was even conscious at this point told a grim tale about her tolerance.

Suddenly, the wounded woman grabbed the bindings covering her chest and tore half of them away. She wiped her face on the bundle of cloth, before blowing her nose like she was a practicing trumpet player. The torn strips were carelessly cast aside. She saw no issue with her ever dwindling clothing. A swordswoman was only naked without her blade, which she had... uh... somewhere around here probably... Oh, but she was not supposed to call herself a swordswoman anymore. Well, then there was no problem, right? Right. It made perfect sense. Leaning far too close, she steadied herself against his chest. “Doctorh shaid thou need rhesht...” Her warm breath brushed against his skin, as she tried to push him down.
Anton La'croix
Tracker

Name : Anton La'croix
Epithet : Screaming Grasshopper
Age : 23
Height : 5'9''
Weight : 186lb
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
World Position : Rear Admiral
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Crew Role : Captain
Devil Fruit : Bug-Bug Fruit, Model: Grasshopper
Haki Level : 6
Hitpoints (HP) : 352
Attack (ATK) : 360
Defense (DEF) : 360
Reflex (RX) : 400
Willpower (WP) : 360
Level : 61
Experience Points : 6116
Quality Score : S
Income Multiplier : +23%; +20% (to all allies)
Berries Berries : 27,734,300
[[bookworm]][[hardboiled]][[berryprinter]]
[[atkt4]][[atkt3]][[deft3]][[rxt3]]
Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 445
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Thu Dec 17, 2020 10:50 pm
Anton listened quietly, patiently to Yumiko's bawling, how she blamed herself for what happened to him, even though it had been Anton's choice. He gently gripped her shoulders to steady her. "Yumiko, it was my choice to fight. If I wasn't ready to get hurt doing my job, well, I'd be a terrible marine, let alone a Rear Admiral."

The woman seemed so fixated on dying for his sake, even saying she hated him for sparring her. The words stung, even as he tried to reassure himself it was just the alcohol talking. "Yumiko, you're a loyal, dedicated woman, with more willpower than this entire crew put together. Whenever you were knocked down, you got back up to keep fighting. That's more than I ever was when I was your rank. How could I possibly hate someone li-YUMIKO!?"

It was at that point that Yumiko pulled off her chest bindings as a makeshift tissue. Anton's head snapped to the side,trying to preserve her modesty.

Don'tlookdon'tlookdon'tlook!

...Well, she's not exactly hiding it.

She's drunk! And clearly she's not in her right mind!

Well, it's not like you're going to do anything to he-


At that point, Yumiko was pushing him down on the bed, getting way too close. It didn't help that Anton himself had been dressed down as well, only in a pair of pants. At that point, both parts of Anton's psyche agreed this had to stop before something they both regretted happened.

"And what, pray tell, did the doctor say YOU should do?" he asked, gripping her shoulders and with as much gentleness as he could, rolled the drunk woman off of him until she was laying on her side beside him. Thankfully the bed was large enough for two.
Yumiko
Tracker

Name : Yumiko
Epithet : Kamaitachi
Age : 26
Height : 5'5'' / 165 cm
Weight : 128 lbs. / 58 kg
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Marine Rank : Petty Officer
Crew Role : First Mate
Devil Fruit : Ita Ita no Mi, Model: Kamaitachi
Haki Level : 3
Hitpoints (HP) : 220
Attack (ATK) : 300
Defense (DEF) : 120
Reflex (RX) : 250
Willpower (WP) : 240
Level : 34
Experience Points : 3438
Quality Score : S+
Income Multiplier : +13%
Berries Berries : 93,166,800
[[baneoftheweak]][[dragonheart]][[childofdestiny]]
[[atkt3]][[deft1]][[deft1]]
Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 227
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Fri Dec 18, 2020 3:40 am
Alcohol talked. And it had no filter whatsoever. Yumiko’s unfocused gaze narrowed when Anton suddenly averted his eyes. His kind words were parried with pure, drunken logic. “Liarh... Thou rhefushe to even look at me afterh I brhought shuch dishhonorh upon thee...” Naturally, the state of her undress didn’t even come to question. In her mind, the reason was far more obvious. She was not even worthy of his attention anymore. Painful, but understandable. Such was the fate of failures. Only an honest death would cleanse this dishonor now.

Toppling the drunk proved easier than expected. She practically crumbled in the captain’s grip, flopping face down onto the bed. The mattress muffled her groan. Her arms trembled as she tried to push herself back up... And failed miserably. After some feeble struggling, she managed to turn to her side and prop herself up with her elbow. “Doctorh shaid that ‘shomeone musht look after h-*hic* before *hic*-e hurts *hic*shelf...’ Her impression of Doctor Black was terrible. ...But not inaccurate. The pointing finger was back, this time aiming to poke the man on the nose. For such a playful gesture, it sure came off as accusing. “He obvioushly meant thee.” There was the drunk logic again, drawing conclusions for her.

Continuing to ignore the novel concept of personal space, the drunken woman pressed against the captain softly. “Sho... Herhe I am... To carrhy out my final tashk ash thy vasshal...” She reached over his waist, trying to grab the blanket and pull it over him. Between the awkward motions, mumbled muttering wandered from her lips. “All my life I have been a fake shamurhai... A fool playing prhetend... But at leasht I can die like a trhue shamurhai afterh thish.” Tears were building up again and she struggled to keep the flood gates closed. She had to stay strong...! Strong for the captain! And make sure he wouldn’t try anything completely reckless in his vulnerable state.

Anton La'croix
Tracker

Name : Anton La'croix
Epithet : Screaming Grasshopper
Age : 23
Height : 5'9''
Weight : 186lb
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
World Position : Rear Admiral
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Crew Role : Captain
Devil Fruit : Bug-Bug Fruit, Model: Grasshopper
Haki Level : 6
Hitpoints (HP) : 352
Attack (ATK) : 360
Defense (DEF) : 360
Reflex (RX) : 400
Willpower (WP) : 360
Level : 61
Experience Points : 6116
Quality Score : S
Income Multiplier : +23%; +20% (to all allies)
Berries Berries : 27,734,300
[[bookworm]][[hardboiled]][[berryprinter]]
[[atkt4]][[atkt3]][[deft3]][[rxt3]]
Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 445
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Fri Dec 18, 2020 5:00 am
Anton had a suspicion as to who Dr. Black really meant, but decided not to press the issue. After all, Yumiko would gladly follow him to hell and back without a second thought. But seeing the woman now, close to breaking down and talking about ending her life so easily, it tore Anton up inside.

As her hand fumbled for the blanket, Anton's own gently took hers, guiding it to the blanket. "Yumiko..." When the blanket covered him, it didn't stop until both of them were underneath it as well.

Anton was now looking right into Yumiko's eyes. There was compassion in those eyes, but also pain. "Is serving under me so horrible that you look forward to death?"

It was a question that had been gnawing at Anton for some time. "You said you dreamed of dying for me. Every single time you make a mistake, you think I want you to die, seeing yourself as nothing but a tool. You wont even call me by my name! Just master, like you see yourself as just a servant, instead of my comrade and friend."

He could feel tears of his own forming. But he wouldn't look away. He looked right into Yumiko own pained eyes. "Am I truly that bad of a leader to you?"
Yumiko
Tracker

Name : Yumiko
Epithet : Kamaitachi
Age : 26
Height : 5'5'' / 165 cm
Weight : 128 lbs. / 58 kg
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Marine Rank : Petty Officer
Crew Role : First Mate
Devil Fruit : Ita Ita no Mi, Model: Kamaitachi
Haki Level : 3
Hitpoints (HP) : 220
Attack (ATK) : 300
Defense (DEF) : 120
Reflex (RX) : 250
Willpower (WP) : 240
Level : 34
Experience Points : 3438
Quality Score : S+
Income Multiplier : +13%
Berries Berries : 93,166,800
[[baneoftheweak]][[dragonheart]][[childofdestiny]]
[[atkt3]][[deft1]][[deft1]]
Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 227
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Fri Dec 18, 2020 8:58 am
With great, fumbling effort, Yumiko managed to find the edge of the blanket and properly pull it over Anton. ...All thanks to his hand guiding her, really. However, when the warm cover reached her as well, she visibly hesitated. A servant was not allowed the same luxury as the master... Then again, she was already breaking one rule by laying on the same bed, so one more wouldn’t make much of a difference. Also, the room was kind of chilly, which motivated her to accept the kindness. Just this once. The first time and the last.

The drunken woman stared back as intently as her swaying vision allowed. When she heard the first question, her expression went from stern to puzzled. “What...?” She didn’t really understand the question. Fortunately, the captain clarified. And when he did... Her eyes widened with utter shock. She recoiled, nearly falling out of the bed. The blanket flapped as she escaped from beneath it. “What?! No! Thou arhe a grheat leaderh!” Finding surprising strength, she managed to sit up and lean over the man. “Have thou feverh? Arhe thou delushional?” Her hand moved up to his forehead to check his temperature. Except her touch was much warmer than his, making the attempt fruitless.

After failing to find any proof that the beloved captain was feverish and thus spouting nonsense, the first mate stopped to ponder. He clearly didn’t understand how the world worked... With a determined huff, she started explaining. “Hrm. Look, I am thy vasshal. A vasshal ish theirh lorhd’sh shworhd and shhield. To die for a warrhiorh’sh death forh the shake of a worthy lorhd ish the grheatesht of honorsh.” Her slurred words didn’t make the explanation any clearer, unfortunately. Well, she made up for it with sheer fervor, bringing a hand to her chest as she spoke. “‘Tish prheshicely cush thou arhe a wonderhful leaderh that I wish to prhotect thy honorh. To cleanshe thee of the dishonorh I have brhought upon thee. Yet thou keep denying me... Do thou not shee me ash worhty...?” Drained of strength, she flopped onto her back with a frustrated sigh.

“Forheign cushtoms are sho shtrange...”
Anton La'croix
Tracker

Name : Anton La'croix
Epithet : Screaming Grasshopper
Age : 23
Height : 5'9''
Weight : 186lb
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
World Position : Rear Admiral
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Crew Role : Captain
Devil Fruit : Bug-Bug Fruit, Model: Grasshopper
Haki Level : 6
Hitpoints (HP) : 352
Attack (ATK) : 360
Defense (DEF) : 360
Reflex (RX) : 400
Willpower (WP) : 360
Level : 61
Experience Points : 6116
Quality Score : S
Income Multiplier : +23%; +20% (to all allies)
Berries Berries : 27,734,300
[[bookworm]][[hardboiled]][[berryprinter]]
[[atkt4]][[atkt3]][[deft3]][[rxt3]]
Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 445
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Sun Dec 20, 2020 10:22 pm
While anton felt some relief with the fact that he wasn't a bad leader, this still left the problem with a despondant and frankly suicidal Yumiko.

Still, her words did give Anton an idea. A way he might finally get through to her. Anton sat up, the moonlight shining from the window forming a halo around him. "It's because I find you worthy that I do not wish to lose you."

He took a deep breath, looking at the woman beside him. "You wish to be my sword and shield? Then hear this. Do not give up. Do not find shame in defeat. Instead use it to grow stronger. BECOME the vassal you desire to be. Your will to keep on fighting does us both honour. Giving up and taking your own life, now that will bring us shame. Do not dream of how you will die for me. Instead, strive to live for me, to remain by my side, just as I shall remain by yours."

Anton took a deep breath. Hopefully that will get through to her. Still, there was more that had to be said. He looked right into Yumiko's eyes. "That being said, you are far more important to me, than just as a vassal. You're a comrade, a friend, and one who holds a special place in my heart. To lose you would hurt me more than any sword or gun ever could." He gave a sad, rueful chuckle. "Sorry, this just sounds like the ramblings of as fool, doesn't it?"
Yumiko
Tracker

Name : Yumiko
Epithet : Kamaitachi
Age : 26
Height : 5'5'' / 165 cm
Weight : 128 lbs. / 58 kg
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Marine Rank : Petty Officer
Crew Role : First Mate
Devil Fruit : Ita Ita no Mi, Model: Kamaitachi
Haki Level : 3
Hitpoints (HP) : 220
Attack (ATK) : 300
Defense (DEF) : 120
Reflex (RX) : 250
Willpower (WP) : 240
Level : 34
Experience Points : 3438
Quality Score : S+
Income Multiplier : +13%
Berries Berries : 93,166,800
[[baneoftheweak]][[dragonheart]][[childofdestiny]]
[[atkt3]][[deft1]][[deft1]]
Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 227
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Mon Dec 21, 2020 3:16 am
Dark clouds parted like a theater curtain. Moonlight flowed into the room, bathing Anton in its pale glow. His words rang clear and pure. Yumiko had wanted to protest, but was left staring in awestruck silence. Never had anyone, especially not a superior, spoken to her like this. All her life, she had clutched onto the traditional teachings of her home country. They detailed her role in life from the cradle to the grave. And she had been perfectly happy with that. Now the man she respected the most challenged everything. Each word was like a sharp spear piercing a hole into the imaginary painting that detailed her worldview.

Finally, the sad, rueful question was left hanging in the air...

Without missing a beat, the drunken woman nodded. “Yesh, it doesh.” Blunt like a whack from a rolled-up newspaper. She had never been the tactful type, always leaning firmly towards honesty. Considering a mere servant one’s comrade, a friend even, was utterly scandalous. Only once in her life had she heard something almost as foolish and it was from an ancient Wano legend titled ‘Fool of a Lord’. As the name suggested, it was a cautionary tale of what happened to those who tried to break traditional roles. However, the master’s word was absolute. Always. And she couldn’t quite find the resolve to dislike his ramblings...

The puzzled marine closed her eyes and folded her arms with a pensive hum. Death was preferable to the shame of defeat... So a proper seppuku was the obvious solution... But doing so would hurt her master for some reason... Which in turn was even more shameful... After a moment of pondering, she gave up on trying to understand. The thoughts were just swirling inside her head, riding bubbly waves in endless circles.

Yumiko’s unfocused gaze flickered open and shifted back onto Anton. “Mashterh.” Since she was getting nowhere just thinking about it, she resolved to take a direct approach. “Thou shaid thou conshiderh me morhe than jusht a vasshal. That I hold a shpecial place in thy hearht.” She reached out, pressing her warm hand on his chest. “What doesh thou trhuly mean by that?” She leaned closer, squinting inquisitively. Her voice got quiet. Careful. “Doesh thou shee me ash a shamurhai warrhiorh... orh a woman...?” A dangerous question. Any half-hearted answer would not do. If the man answered carelessly, he had the power to do more damage than he ever imagined.
Anton La'croix
Tracker

Name : Anton La'croix
Epithet : Screaming Grasshopper
Age : 23
Height : 5'9''
Weight : 186lb
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
World Position : Rear Admiral
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Crew Role : Captain
Devil Fruit : Bug-Bug Fruit, Model: Grasshopper
Haki Level : 6
Hitpoints (HP) : 352
Attack (ATK) : 360
Defense (DEF) : 360
Reflex (RX) : 400
Willpower (WP) : 360
Level : 61
Experience Points : 6116
Quality Score : S
Income Multiplier : +23%; +20% (to all allies)
Berries Berries : 27,734,300
[[bookworm]][[hardboiled]][[berryprinter]]
[[atkt4]][[atkt3]][[deft3]][[rxt3]]
Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 445
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Mon Dec 21, 2020 4:06 am
Anton's heart pounded in his chest, as Yumiko's hand rested upon it. It seemed like his words were getting through to her, though he would be lying if he said he wasn't embarrassed by it. I mean, he practically confessed his feelings for her.

Her question gave him pause. Did he see her as a woman, or a samurai? He had to answer carefully. He was holding her metaphorical heart in his hands.

"I do not claim to be an expert on samurai," Anton spoke, "But I know you're a skilled warrior. Brave, devoted, honorable, who will not hesitate to fight to defend her ideals, who will continue to fight, even to her last breath. That sounds like a samurai to me."

Anton then took a deep breath. Well, he had gone this far. "But my heart also sees you in another light. A beautiful, courageous woman, who if she so chose can make any man more fortunate than even the mightiest ruler." Anton gave a small sigh. "So, do I see you as a samurai, or as a woman? My answer...would have to be both."

Anton's words hung in the air. He could only imagine what Yumiko was thinking.

"I guess, all that's left to ask is, how do you see me? Not as your lord, but as a man." His heart froze in his chest, awaiting her response.
Yumiko
Tracker

Name : Yumiko
Epithet : Kamaitachi
Age : 26
Height : 5'5'' / 165 cm
Weight : 128 lbs. / 58 kg
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Marine Rank : Petty Officer
Crew Role : First Mate
Devil Fruit : Ita Ita no Mi, Model: Kamaitachi
Haki Level : 3
Hitpoints (HP) : 220
Attack (ATK) : 300
Defense (DEF) : 120
Reflex (RX) : 250
Willpower (WP) : 240
Level : 34
Experience Points : 3438
Quality Score : S+
Income Multiplier : +13%
Berries Berries : 93,166,800
[[baneoftheweak]][[dragonheart]][[childofdestiny]]
[[atkt3]][[deft1]][[deft1]]
Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 227
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Mon Dec 21, 2020 7:08 am
Words were dangerous. When wielded carelessly, they could cause worse damage than any blade. Unfortunately for Anton, despite his best intentions, he chose perhaps the second worst answer. It started off so well too... At first Yumiko’s intense -or intensely unfocused- stare softened. Giving him her undivided attention, she gently shifted her weight until she was sitting on her knees facing him. She even found a faint smile as her master, the man whose words meant the most, offered his honest praise. Indeed, bravery, devotion and honor were all traditional samurai values. Gently he lifted her heart into his hand...

And crushed it.

The wounded woman’s smile shattered. Beneath the cracks, her pain and shock were all too visible. Slowly her fingers curled, tightening their grip against her thighs. So he too... saw her as a woman after all... His pure, honest intentions only made it more painful. Closing her heart to the evils of the world was easy. If she knew someone’s words were born of ill intent, she could simply cast them aside as meaningless drivel. A samurai was not swayed by empty insults. So that’s why the kindness cut so deep... Because she knew he truly meant it.

Once Anton had spoken his mind, deathly silence filled the room. Yumiko’s head drooped. “I shee...” Glimmering like pearls in the moonlight, tears rolled down her cheeks. “Sho that ish... how it ish...” She only managed to get out a wavering mutter. Gritting her teeth, she tried to fight against the tidal wave of sadness rising from her soul. Being utterly sloshed made it impossible, however, Her nails dug into her thighs, drawing blood. The tears wouldn’t stop. Soft sobs slipped through her guard. “I trhuly... am... a fool...” All this time she had been chasing the impossible.

Fighting against the flood of tears, the crying marine raised her head. She tried to look at her superior through the watery mess. After several strained seconds of sobbing, she managed to finally get out a strangled whisper. “A woman... cannot be a shamurhai...” Simply admitting it hurt worse than any wound she had suffered. “Thush it hash alwaysh been... Shince the dawn of Wano...” There were no half measures. To even claim she could somehow be both was a grave insult to her entire heritage. She bit her lip in a futile attempt to stop it from trembling. Another trickle of blood stained her pale skin.
Anton La'croix
Tracker

Name : Anton La'croix
Epithet : Screaming Grasshopper
Age : 23
Height : 5'9''
Weight : 186lb
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
World Position : Rear Admiral
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Crew Role : Captain
Devil Fruit : Bug-Bug Fruit, Model: Grasshopper
Haki Level : 6
Hitpoints (HP) : 352
Attack (ATK) : 360
Defense (DEF) : 360
Reflex (RX) : 400
Willpower (WP) : 360
Level : 61
Experience Points : 6116
Quality Score : S
Income Multiplier : +23%; +20% (to all allies)
Berries Berries : 27,734,300
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Mon Dec 21, 2020 10:50 pm
Anton could almost see Yumiko's heart breaking, the sight causing intense guilt to swell up in him. Dammit! He had said the wrong thing again! He wanted to say something, ANYTHING to help mitigate the damage, but he held back. Continuing to blunder through like h ed had would only cause more problems.

Then came her last statement, how women could not be samurai in Wano. Wano. The thought caused anger to simmer within Anton. The country th hat told her she was only valuable if she died in battle, who taught her she should kill herself for failures, to see herself as nothing but a tool. And now to say the role she held so dear was beyond her because of her gender. The more he heard of Wan ok,  the more he was growing to dislike it.

But then, a thought occured to him.

"Yumiko, if I may ask, why are you so fixated on being a Samurai..." he looked into her eyes, "When you serve under me as a marine?"

Anton could feel a determination burning within him. "Marines are honorable, brave defenders of justice. And whether you're a woman or a man is irrelevant. Atari Lahira. Do you know the name? She's a Rear Admiral, my peer. She's not only a woman, but a wife and mother,  and she Carrie's herself with more dedication and professionalism than myself.

Murasaki Yoshiko. She's one of the most respected Vice Admirals in the marines, and she's old enough to be my mother.

Even Admiral Aokami is a woman, one of the top brass of the marines!

Does the fact they are women make them lesser than their male counterparts? Does the fact that they're not samurai diminish their standing and worth?

If not, then why should it do so to you?"


Anton allowed his words to sink in before he continued. "If the samurai will not accept you because you're a woman, than that's their loss, for we the marines will welcome to with open arms." He turned his gaze to the window. "The people out there, they wont care if you're a samurai or not. But they will care if you come to their aid or not. So do so. Become a hero to them. Become a hero to the marines."

His soft, gentle eyes looked into her own. "And become a hero to me, like I know you can."
Yumiko
Tracker

Name : Yumiko
Epithet : Kamaitachi
Age : 26
Height : 5'5'' / 165 cm
Weight : 128 lbs. / 58 kg
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Marine Rank : Petty Officer
Crew Role : First Mate
Devil Fruit : Ita Ita no Mi, Model: Kamaitachi
Haki Level : 3
Hitpoints (HP) : 220
Attack (ATK) : 300
Defense (DEF) : 120
Reflex (RX) : 250
Willpower (WP) : 240
Level : 34
Experience Points : 3438
Quality Score : S+
Income Multiplier : +13%
Berries Berries : 93,166,800
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Tue Dec 22, 2020 2:59 am
It was a good thing the captain chose to bite his tongue, rather than voice his thoughts regarding the land of Wano. Carelessly criticizing the first mate’s home could have done irreparable damage. He avoided it narrowly. Unfortunately, alcohol was a poison, a terrible toxin that poisoned the thoughts and corroded away mental barriers. During the thousands of years people had enjoyed it, the fact had slipped from the minds of many, but that didn’t make it any less real. In drunken stupor, one could easily say things they would later regret.

Speaking of which...

When Anton voiced his question, Yumiko froze stiff. Behind those teary eyes, sorrow flared into fury. She snapped. “Becaushe I am a shamurhai firsht and a marhine shecond! Alwaysh have been! I am naught but a shimple tool meant to sherhve a worhthy caushe!” It may have sounded cold, cruel even, but it was still kinder than what many of her superiors had told her thus far. Some had made it clear she was just a soldier among countless others. Few had told her she had no value beyond her body. She had taken those lessons to heart.

In the throes of the poison, the furious woman cast aside her stern, polite exterior. Her melodramatic soul flowed freely. “A woman who hash shtained herh handsh in blood ish not fit to be a motherh! Rhearh Admirhal Lahirha shhould abandon eitherh herh posht or herh child!” There, she said it! She had always thought about it, but had kept it to herself. It was not her place to question her superiors, but... Well, a warrior could not raise a child! It was not only improper, but utterly backwards.

Yumiko gritted her teeth. Every single example from Anton fueled her frustration further. She knew those names, of course she did. They were her heroes. Unfortunately, that also meant she knew what her peers said about them... when they thought she wasn’t listening... Did them being women make them lesser...? “Yesh, yesh it doesh! They arhe alwaysh comparhed to men in everhything they do! And all theirh failurhesh arhe blamed on theirh genderh!” She sniffled, barely managing to draw in enough air to keep shouting. Her voice kept cracking. “I have hearhd what the otherh marhinesh whishper amongsht themshelvesh! They shay that Admirhal Aokami ish the weakesht of all Admirhalsh, even weakerh than a Vice-Admirhal!” She was, of course, talking about the stories surrounding Vice-Admiral Warp. The man was said to be stronger than all the Admirals. A poor comparison, perhaps, but true nonetheless.

Finally running out of air, the drunken mess had to stop to gasp and sob. “I purshue the path of the shamurhai... Cush ‘tish the only thing I have left. The lasht noble purshuit in my worhthlessh life.” The last connection to the traditions of her home country she missed so much. ...Well, aside from all the sake in her blood right now. She lifted her hands to wipe her tears. A wasted effort, really. “I had hoped that I could become a shamurhai ash long ash I am not sheen ash a woman...” She took a long look at her hands. The sharp nails dripped with crimson. “I would gladly be sheen ash a tool, a weapon... Even a monshterh.” Anything other than a woman. The stained fingers curled into tight fists, trembling briefly, before falling limply to her lap.

“But I shee now that I have failed.”
Anton La'croix
Tracker

Name : Anton La'croix
Epithet : Screaming Grasshopper
Age : 23
Height : 5'9''
Weight : 186lb
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
World Position : Rear Admiral
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Crew Role : Captain
Devil Fruit : Bug-Bug Fruit, Model: Grasshopper
Haki Level : 6
Hitpoints (HP) : 352
Attack (ATK) : 360
Defense (DEF) : 360
Reflex (RX) : 400
Willpower (WP) : 360
Level : 61
Experience Points : 6116
Quality Score : S
Income Multiplier : +23%; +20% (to all allies)
Berries Berries : 27,734,300
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Tue Dec 22, 2020 4:20 am
Anton had hoped that his words would have some effect on Yumiko, a possible path for herself to take in life. One that would hopefully lead to more confidence in herself.

But the words that poured out of her mouth. Those vile, hateful words that caused Anton's eyes to widen. Was this how she truly felt, or was it the alcohol? The anger building inside of him couldn't care either way.

Anton's hand moved without thinking.

The sharp crack lingered in the air, Anton's hand trembled as it hung in place, his palm still stinging. His eyes were wide as his mind raced to catch up. He had slapped her. This woman, whose cared for, and he slapped her! But...that didn't matter did it? She had crossed the line with those words.

As the silence hung, his mind finally was able to get words out.

"Who hurt you?"

It was almost a whisper, but in the silence the words were loud. "Who hurt you so bad you've developed such hatred for yourself? So bad that it's now spilling out onto others. Who Yumiko? Tell me! And don't you dare say it's how things are done in Wano, because I refuse to believe any land would do this to people!" Tears were stinging his eyes, running down his cheeks as he awaited her answer, the anger inside him roiling, looking for some target to focus on other than the woman in front of him.
Yumiko
Tracker

Name : Yumiko
Epithet : Kamaitachi
Age : 26
Height : 5'5'' / 165 cm
Weight : 128 lbs. / 58 kg
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Marine Rank : Petty Officer
Crew Role : First Mate
Devil Fruit : Ita Ita no Mi, Model: Kamaitachi
Haki Level : 3
Hitpoints (HP) : 220
Attack (ATK) : 300
Defense (DEF) : 120
Reflex (RX) : 250
Willpower (WP) : 240
Level : 34
Experience Points : 3438
Quality Score : S+
Income Multiplier : +13%
Berries Berries : 93,166,800
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Posts : 227
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Tue Dec 22, 2020 5:06 am
A sharp sound pierced the air. Soon after, the pain followed. Yumiko’s head jerked with the impact, wholly unprepared for it. A red mark slowly formed on her pale skin. Everything seemed to stop. Eventually, Anton broke the silence. She looked back at him, eyes wide with bewilderment. With fear. Her hand rose to tenderly touch the red mark on her cheek. She recoiled beneath the weight of the heavy questions. The only answer he received was a weak whimper.

“I’m... sorry...”

Unfortunately, the drunken woman’s body had finally reached the breaking point. All of a sudden, a distinct tint of green painted her features. A wave of sickness washed over her. It twisted inside her stomach like an angry snake. With trained swiftness, her hands clamped over her lips. This was far from her first rodeo. She knew exactly what was coming... Her cheeks puffed with a dry heave. “HURK-!” Nonono! Not here, not now! Without a word, she jumped up and staggered to the door. It slammed open, the sound echoing across the silent mansion. She rushed down the hallway and vanished into the shadows.

A couple of corners later, the wounded woman crashed into a ruined bathroom. She didn’t even have time to close the door behind her. In her last seconds, she clawed her way to the toilet bowl. Not a moment too late... The dam was broken with a haunting sound. “BLEEEURGHHGHHH!” All that sickness and sorrow came spewing out violently. She clutched onto her porcelain bucket of shame weakly, bracing herself for another wave. This was not the first time... And wouldn’t be the last either. She could only pray that none of her allies and especially not Anton saw her like this. Well, perhaps the gruesome sounds would keep them away.

It wasn’t exactly a show of rainbows and glitter in there...
Anton La'croix
Tracker

Name : Anton La'croix
Epithet : Screaming Grasshopper
Age : 23
Height : 5'9''
Weight : 186lb
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
World Position : Rear Admiral
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Crew Role : Captain
Devil Fruit : Bug-Bug Fruit, Model: Grasshopper
Haki Level : 6
Hitpoints (HP) : 352
Attack (ATK) : 360
Defense (DEF) : 360
Reflex (RX) : 400
Willpower (WP) : 360
Level : 61
Experience Points : 6116
Quality Score : S
Income Multiplier : +23%; +20% (to all allies)
Berries Berries : 27,734,300
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Turf : Minion Island;
Posts : 445
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Tue Dec 22, 2020 9:55 pm
That look of fear in Yumiko's eyes caused a pang to shoot through Anton's heart. Her timid apology caused guilt to well up inside of him. But before he could apologize, her drunken state finally caught up with her, causing her to flee the room.

"Wait!" Anton called out, try to pursue her before a sharp pain in his side stopped him. Funny how he ignored th ed pain of his battered form for so long. Hampered, he tried to follow her, his first mate already getting a good lead on him. In the end, it was the sounds of her retching that drew him to the door. He thought to step inside, to help her, but paused. He knew enough that him seeing her in such a state would only hurt her further.

Anton let out a defeated sigh, leaning his head on the door. "Forgive me Yumiko..." he said softly, though whether she would hear him or not vfc was uncertain.
Yumiko
Tracker

Name : Yumiko
Epithet : Kamaitachi
Age : 26
Height : 5'5'' / 165 cm
Weight : 128 lbs. / 58 kg
Species : Human
Faction : Marine
Crew : The Guardian Knights
Ship : The Grand Steamer
Marine Rank : Petty Officer
Crew Role : First Mate
Devil Fruit : Ita Ita no Mi, Model: Kamaitachi
Haki Level : 3
Hitpoints (HP) : 220
Attack (ATK) : 300
Defense (DEF) : 120
Reflex (RX) : 250
Willpower (WP) : 240
Level : 34
Experience Points : 3438
Quality Score : S+
Income Multiplier : +13%
Berries Berries : 93,166,800
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[Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko) Empty Re: [Social] Matter of Worth (Yumiko)

Wed Dec 23, 2020 2:38 am
All things had to come to an end eventually... And thank the heavens for that. The disgusting noises slowly subsided to weak hacking and coughing, occasionally punctuated by a soft sob. Awkward minutes stretched into the night, until only deep silence remained. Finally all the exhaustion, injuries and foolishness caught up with the drunken woman. Darkness swallowed her mind as she blacked out. It couldn’t be called sleep, not really. She resembled a corpse, slumped lifelessly against the porcelain throne. Nothing could rouse her anymore. Only the softest breaths confirmed she hadn’t truly died. Some wishes simply refused to come true.

Yumiko missed Anton’s apology completely. The soft words had drowned beneath the vile retching. Perhaps it was better that way. Her already wounded heart would surely split in two if she knew her superior had seen her like this. However, even the grim, gloomy cloud hanging over the poor, unfortunate souls found a silver lining in the moonlight. With so much poison in her system, the events of the night blurred together into an indescribable mess. She wouldn’t remember much. For better or worse. It was the reason why she drank. To numb the pain. To calm herself.

To forget.
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