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  • 📅 February and March 2024 are YE 46.2 in the RP.

RP Lunch and Learn


Convention Veteran
RP Date
YE 44.7
RP Location
Port Jiyuu
Fletcher strode along the promenade of the the Space Station, Subaru walked just behind him and to his left. While the YSS Densetsu was his flagship, he preferred to use a Fuji-class while he was traveling. Asagumo City was a huge city with a wide variety of places to eat, one of the nicer ones was Takeda house, which had been founded by Tachiko who was the adopted daughter of Katsuko. In his experience, the dining was universally excellent. He arrived first and was seated at a table that was both private and overlooked a beautiful view outside.

"Look what the winds pushed into shore," Katsuko said when she spotted Fletcher, a fond memory in her mind of the change-of-command ceremony for the Seventh Fleet came drifting back, "The luxury of being mobile is showing, I hope our lunch isn't taking away from something more important?" she asked, even though he had been the one to suggest the lunch, then she presented him with a small decorative case of eight Sekai Ichi Apples from the Iga Fancy Fruit Emporium. She loved to give people gifts, especially when it was in-season fancy fruit from Jiyuu. She had worn her new Fifth Expeditionary Fleet uniform, minted pressed, and displayed the updated patch.

Katsuko had wondered a few times about what would become of Fletcher, the man had some serious age on that body - it was rude to ask if he planned to eventually trade it in for something more accommodating, so she never really did. She lowered herself into the seat across from him and said, "It is good to see though, " she said, then glanced out the window, and gave an appreciated sigh at the beauty of Asagumo City, for an artificial Yamatai-like biome in the middle of a space station, it still fascinated her with its beauty. She returned her attention quickly back to Fletcher though.
The Maître d'Hôtel bowed respectfully when he approached the table. Good afternoon, Taishōs." With a flourish, the impeccably-dressed Minkan produced two menu-cards, delicately printed in gold leaf on rag-paper.

  • Hors d'œuvre: Mussels on the half shell with ginger-tamarind mingionette
  • Soup: Mushroom-onion gratinée
  • Entrée: Cumin lamb biang-biang noodles
  • Fish: Ginger-lime crab cakes with five-spice aioli
  • Main Course: Roast duck breast stuffed with with smoked tofu "foie gras"
  • Cheese: Baked brie topped with red-braised crisp pork belly in honey-chili
  • Dessert: Seasonal fruits in a Shaoxing sweet rice wine reduction with citrus purée and basil
"The only thing you are taking me away from is worrying about things that aren't in my control. Some days I wish my problems were as easy to solve as shooting the bad guys in the face again." Fletcher explained.

Fletcher gave a warm smile at the apples. "I appreciate it." He took the apples with a bow. He selected two of them and put one beside his plate and the other beside Katsuko's. He handed the case to Subaru. He pulled a card out of his pocket. It was about the size of a business card, but embedded into it was a memory chip with a huge amount of storage. The card it's self was beautiful, an arrow that was the symbol of his family and the flower that was the symbol of hers on a black background with gold trim. "I had my engineers send you the files that I thought you might need. They are also on this. I had a team compile everything you could need out there. I also included some things best kept secret that you may find useful if you get yourself in a jam. They are encrypted to yourself and loyal members of your family. If information is power, than I put as much power as I could into it."

He sat as Katsuko did, "Thank you." He said, taking the menu and perusing it before nodding and accepting what they would be served. "It's good to see you as well. With all of the preparations, I can imagine there is always more to do. How are you doing?" He asked his friend.
Katsuko smiled and said in encouragement, "There was a time when it was easier to tell who the bad guys were, idle times lead to idle hands and measures. Many wish to fix problems that don't really need fixing, while the things that make us worry about those, not within our control go unnoticed. Just remember Fletcher, there are still plenty of problems you can solve." She examined the card he handed over, it was always his way to give gifts that were detailed and specific to her preferences, much like the sword he had given her during the change of command ceremony, "Thank you, it will come in useful. I have a gift for you as well, just a little something to remember me by *- I expect the frontier is soon to swallow my ambitions which is probably better than me, worrying about things outside of my control as well," she glanced at the menu and gave a nod of approval.

"I have to admit Fletcher, while I may be well in terms of keeping myself busy as a Taisho, I find myself feeling uncomfortable. That personal attack on me in the media has me feeling ill in my own skin, I fear two, four, eight years from now I will return home to an Empire that is unrecognizable if it is even an Empire by then. Not that I want to get political today, I just will be very glad when I am away from the dark overhanging cloud of it all," she said in honesty, using her own pause to order an umeshu for both her and Fletcher. "Outside of that, I'm just glad to be back at doing what I do best," she said. "What about you, how have you been?" she questioned.

Will be sent via transmissions after the meal.
"Few remember it, but I do. I remember the day we had been working for. The day we crowned Saito. I might have been a small part, but I was a part. I remember why we did it, and the effort not just by the Ketsuri, but by everyone who had a belief for a better world. I look around now and see the vindication of everything we sacrificed; blood, sweat, tears; to put the empire in place. Our rulers, you included, might not have always been perfect; but they have done better and finally brought peace and prosperity to our people." Fletcher said with a conviction in his voice.

"As for me, with my youngest son gone, I feel the years more. I've given so much of mine and my family's blood to the Empire. The Kuvexian war is over, and if the Swarmtide is something we can just handle, I think I may want to retire again. Perhaps raise some good children and enjoy the peace. Appreciate your children while you have them, can still talk to them. Because there may come a day where you can't anymore and things left unsaid will remain unsaid forever." He said, looking out the window.

He looked back at Katsuko, "Enough with the past, let's talk about the future. Mine remains here, protecting what we've built. What about yours?"
"Wise words, and keeping my children close is exactly something I am hoping to do. They've all grown up though, my grandchildren are slowly climbing the ladder behind them. A reminder I guess that the years pass differently for us all," she said, she felt compelled to ask something but was unsure of how to phrase it, sure he wanted to move the conversation forward. She took a sip of the water they had put out, while she waited for the umeshu she had ordered, "Will, have you considered a transfer to a newer, younger body? Please don't take that wrong, I just see a man who has a lot more fight left in him - not one ready for the pastures of retirement. I found retirement not what I thought it was going to be and I would hate to see you with those same regrets," she commented, there would be time to come back to the talk of the future for a moment.
Fletcher gave a smile at the younger Neko, "Yes and no. I keep my backups up to date, it would be easy for me to get whatever body I want, even a Eihei if I really wanted. It is tempting to stop some of these old bones from groaning at me. On the other hand, I keep mine for the same reason you are taking these stations with you, your fond of them. I like my body even with it's age. I was almost fifty when I died the first time during the Elysian war, the first one. Older than Yui is now. We had only acquired ST technology the first time recently, and not everyone was sure that it was going to work for us. I grew up in a world where once you died, that was it. You didn't get a new body and go on with your life with a few memories missing. You didn't swap bodies because you felt like you needed an upgrade." He touched his white hair, "A bit of this is also the affectation of a old man who wants others to know he's earned his stripes. My mother-in-law used to say 'Gray hair is a crown earned by living'. She died in the great plague, a lot of my family did. The history that is downloaded into your head I lived through a lot of it. So yes, I've thought about getting a new body. Next time I die, I'll have a better one. But no, I still have an attachment to this one that's carried me so far. Do you think I need a new one?"

"You also should remember that it won't be the first time I've retired, or the last. I often retire when times are relatively peaceful, do something else to help the empire. Like you did when you became the Empress or Premier. Although my jobs tend to be less glamorous." He pointed out.
Katsuko gave a warm smile to fletcher and said quietly, "You're right in a lot of ways, I'd never swap bodies just for an upgrade. It was short-sighted maybe of me to suggest it, and as much as I find your points comforting, I find them haunting. Something I fear, perhaps more than anything is permanent death because it is an unknown - I can't wrap my mind around religion, or belief in some grand afterlife - so it truly is something I fear." She reached across the table and placed her hand over Fletchers, "Your gray crown is well earned, maybe more so than any crown I have worn. It is your choice when you die, I will respect you either way my friend but I see a man who is not done yet, " she commented thoughtfully as their Hors d'œuvre were brought to the table.

"Just maybe consider too that you aren't done yet. As for glamourous jobs, the Empress has the worst job in the Empire. Being Empress is living every day where it feels like you're served dinner, only to have your plate cleared before you lift a chopstick to it. While I hold out that someday a member of my clan may ascend to that seat again, I would never accept it unless Yamatai itself broke and I could lead it from the bridge of a ship and step down when the crisis was over," she reminisced about her time as Empress. For her it was no longer about the shame Kiyoko and Tio brought, it was more about what had been accomplished in a very short period of time. "As for Premier, they should consider giving it to a KAMI with an undeveloped sense of opinion or self, you conduct an orchestra of ego and self-centered expression. The Senators are supposed to represent the people that elect them, but for the most part - they represent their own selfish goals. To be a good Imperial Premier you sit on your hands, it's against everything that I feel I was made for, it lacks action, it lacks delivery, and the system is fundamentally broken as people lose sight of the Empress' voice, her devotion to her people." The former Empress, the former Premier hung her head for a moment, "You have done the most prestigious job in this sector, I promise that Fletcher. By Yui, that cap and rank still mean something, and if it ever stops I hope I'm incinerated like an old unwanted war doll," her words may come as a shock to many, but she meant them.

She paused, feeling a bit bad for her ranting, and pointed out, after a bite and a careful chew, "These mussels are lovely."
Fletcher ate while Katsuko talked. "Mingionette is lovely with the Mussels. Every time I come here, I'm reminded of why I love coming here. If this uniform loses it's meaning, I hope you're not incinerated, I'll need your help to make it something again. I'm not ready to die, there is so much that needs to be done, and the Empire won't forget me easily. I won't let them. You have a huge logistical project going on here, and it interests me. What are your plans?" He asked.
"Uh-huh!" Katsuko exclaimed in victory, "See, you're not done yet. Retire when you've run out of things to do my friend, in other words, I expect to see you still in that uniform when I get back," she said with a chuckle, feeling like she had defeated him at his own words. She ate a few bites as well and took a sip of the umeshu that finally arrived. " It is a hell of an undertaking, I think even command is reeling a little under my constant demands for things fleets don't normally ask for, " she said, then paused and continued, "To give a simple answer though, I have promising long-ranged telescope data and some old drone footage - We're headed Rimward." She took another few bites, then sipped her plum wine again, "To be honest, my plan isn't for one mission, more of many missions. Go out there, build, colonize, and connect back to Yamatai. Wash, rinse and repeat, " she explained.
The lunch was an enjoyable one, Fletcher enjoyed catching up with Katsuko. Unfortunately, all good things had to come to an end. There was a soft buzz from his watch as they finished their meal. Fletcher seemed slightly saddened by the imposition of time. "Neither of us are done yet, we'll carve the path of the future. You your way, and me mine." He said, paying for the meal and standing. "We'll see each other again, standing in a stronger empire." He said as he and his aide left.
When lunch was over, Katsuko stood from the table and gave a deep bow, "It was good to see you again Fletcher, hopefully, we will see each other again soon." She made a note that she still needed to send him his gift before the colonization group left, she pocketed the special card and headed out the same way she had come. She made a transfer and added more KS to the tip, as well as made a donation of to the Norian Arrival in Fletcher's name for 5,000KS.