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RP The Norian and the Ice Queen


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RP Date
YE 44.8
RP Location
Ice Queen Mountains, Planet Yamatai

Ice Queen Mountains​

Yamatai Star Empire, Planet Yamatai
Sometime in YE 44.8

Airwin found the ride up the mountain on the overnight train from Kyoto to be a fascinating experience, the antiquated steam-powered locomotive, and the very traditional Yamataian customer service on the train were something for him to write home about. He felt more comfortable as the train ascended the elevations, the cold air from the window he opened was like what others would experience from a warm tropical wind in a paradise world. The air was fresh, the snow packed in the sparse evergreen forests which littered the mountain. On the way up Airwin had used SYNC and the Civilian side of PANTHEON to find out as much about the sakagura and its owner as he could. Unfortunately had no choice but to bring work with him, the crisis spurred by the arrival of his people meant he had to be available day and night. Airwin ran his fingers back through his short blue hair and settled back into his sleeper bunk, feeling rather satisfied with the cup of Sencha Tea that had been served to him. It was better than his failed attempt at trying sushi the night before, he had never really dove into the whole omnivore movement and probably would not again unless forced.

The wee morning hours would pass by, with a short nap and a couple more cups of tea. It was not long before the train arrived at Shingō Village, where he and his single suitcase, a rather small MERN duffle bag were deposited on the terminal deck. Hopefully, the transportation to the Sakagura was around somewhere close, for he didn't have a clue of where to go. Thankfully his symbiote was efficient in its connection to the civilian networks, in case he needed to call. For now, though he placed his faith in the invitation but took the time to explore a little. He took in the sights of the village and the slopes around it. He stopped briefly at Ito Miu's Takoyaki stand but got out of line quickly after he realized what it was that was being served. He settled for a bottle of Tokyo Cellar Ginger Ale from one of the vending machines and eventually found a bench to enjoy it on. He gave friendly smiles and nods of his head to those who passed, ever grateful to the people who had saved his people.

Deposited the night before, a thin blanket of freshly-fallen snow covered the A-frame rooftops of Shingō Village, softening the snarl of an antiquated internal-combustion engine as it rolled into town in a white car with "氷の女王酒" stencilled on the side in black paint. At the wheel, Fusako pulled into the train station's loading zone and scanned the crowd. It didn't take long to see Airwin, at which point she killed the engine.

Fusako stepped out of the delivery car looking nearly as out-of-place as the Norian she was here to meet. In stark contrast to the vehicle, obviously battered and beaten back into shape over several decades of hard use in a harsh environment, Fusako was an older Geshrin who very clearly took excellent care of herself. Her shorter, stockier body was wrapped in the thick layers of a light blue kimono, whose surface had a simple volumetric effect that made it look like water flowing languidly beneath a layer of ice.

"Senator Aestaesys Airwin Caeyara," she said to the dark blue haired Norian, suddenly feeling but almost as quickly dismissing a sense of déjà vu. As she did so, she extended a gift bag towards him with both hands. "I am Kinoshita Fusako. It is my pleasure to meet you. Please accept this. It is a sample of my akiagari sake along with a bottle of fresh mountain spring water. I am here to take you to my sakagura when you are ready."
Airwin stood up with a smile, he wore his full-length black MERN coat with its polished niranium buttons, standard-issue boots, and a rather fashionable gentleman's hat that he had found matched when he was in Kyoto. He would have worn a traditional robe, but he didn't want to stick out like a sore thumb on the train. A few more experimental outfits were in the duffle bag, along with one of his Aest Vyrdi robes. "Finally, to meet you in person is refreshing Kinoshita Fusako," he said, a solemn nod followed. He accepted the gift with a smile, then opened his duffle bag. He handed her what looked to be a very fancy bottle, colored and stylized by hand looking almost like it held a nebula within its contents the way the glass was blown to capture the light. "A bottle of Chaclle; it might be one of the last of our seed vaults aren't recovered from our distant home," he said with careful wording, "I wish to thank you for the invitation, it was good to come to see this place - I have to admit, the climate is very much to my liking. As I said, one of my Uncles is on Jiyuu, and he finds the place dreadfully hot," he said, following up on what he had stated in his letter.

"I hope this day finds you well, I'm sure the campaign trail is keeping you busy?" he asked, curious to learn more in person from what he had already researched through the public networks. "I must apologize in advance if I find little interest in some themes of the political climate, it is hard to go from running across space fleeing extinction to such comfortable surroundings," he said in sincerity, a slight bow of his form forwards as he struggled to put what he wanted to say from Nira'las to trade, the lack of vesper link had a way of making things seem empty to him, that missing obviously projected emotion lacked context.

His slender tipped ears twitched within the short threads of his dark blue hair, he couldn't help but note the smell of the internal combustion engine. He reached into his pocket and discretely placed the small bullet-shaped selective membrane filters into his nostrils that would not only filter out the scent of the exhaust but would reduce the amount of atmospheric oxygen just a little more below standard, enough to keep his lungs from feeling they were on fire.
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Fusako's finely honed expression faltered when she took the bottle from his hands and stared at its contents. "I..." she began but couldn't come up with the words to continue her sentence until she shook her head and looked away from the bottle. "I've never seen anything like it and I hate to seem rude, but you must tell me more. What is Chaclle? How does it look so beautiful? Does it use some kind of volumetric projection? I can hardly look at it without being entranced."

Clearing her throat, Fusako tried to reset herself back into gracious host mode. "The campaign trail is less busy than one might expect. Few Senators have responded to my invitations. So far just you and my esteemed competitor, Senator Anslen Volontany. Though, to be fair, I have yet to work my way through inviting the entire list of Senators," she explained with an embarrassed smile. "And there is no need to apologize for political disinterest. It is difficult to explain why I decided to give up my hermetic existence, see the extent of our Empire, and eventually run for Premier. But it is not out of interest in politics, I assure you. I suppose that I feel a lifetime of leading others has prepared me to offer this small contribution to our Empire, freeing up those who might serve in more meaningful ways."

Bowing, she gestured to the car. "This way, please. It is a short trip over the mountain pass to my sakagura," she reassured him, then gestured to his bag. "May I take your luggage?"
Airwin gave a bit of an awkward look, it would take some getting used to - having to explain everything, "Well chacelle starts with the Ph'ggno fruit, it is um..." he said thoughtfully, "...a special fruit that is very hard to grow, it has a gorgeous burgundy color. When it is pressed its juice is then fermented in a cask made of wood native to our homeworld. The end result is a bubbly, frothy liquid wine with a deliciously sweet and tangy flavor," he told her, "It is very expensive, especially now because there might not be any more made. It is something to be savored a lot of work has gone into that bottle, including the bottle itself." The mention of it all made Airwin a sort of sad, the dark blue-haired Norian turned his head slightly and looked away for a moment. He swallowed hard and returned himself to the matters at hand.

"Politics is an interesting gauntlet, the debate of philosophies applied in a maze. It's more of an interest in politics that may not be business as usual," he said, unsure if she would understand his reference. He handed her his luggage and he gave a meaningful bow, still getting used to all the bowing. "Sure, I'll get in," he said as he got into the passenger's seat. Another adventure was ahead.
A mask of contented calm hid Fusako's excitement at hearing more about chacelle as well as her frustration at Airwin's hesitation. Fusako watched carefully as he turned and cleared his throat. It wasn't much to go on, he clearly hid his feelings as well as she did, but he'd given her enough context to guess that he felt sad about leaving his home. As much as she wanted to press him for more information, she held off for now.

Taking his duffel bag, she walked to the car, put it in the back, and then got in the driver's side. Turning her key, she started the engine and, remembering what he'd said about Norian temperature preferences, Fusako quickly turned the heat off and cracked the windows open a little to let the cold air in as she pulled away from the station.

"Please adjust the environmental controls to your comfort," she said as she used her gear-shifting hand to indicate the dials and switches that were normally set to warm the interior of the car. "Or open your window more, if you don't mind a little snow," she said with a gesture to the hand crank on his door. "I prefer the cold, myself, having found Jiyuu's climate too warm for my comfort. I look forward to visiting whatever world on which your people eventually settle, since I expect to find at least its climate much to my liking."

Fusako skillfully piloted the car up the road that led out of Shingō and deeper into the Ice Queen Mountains. Almost as soon as they left the village, the road curved to approach the steep incline at an angle, making a series of hairpin turns to climb slowly upwards and over the heavily wooded foothill. At each hairpin, Fusako calmly kicked the clutch to make the rear tires spin in the snow so she could pull through the curve without dropping the engine revs. It was a tricky process, but Fusako's decades of experience let her drive so smoothly that a full cup of water in one of the car's cupholders wouldn't let a drop fall.

"You mentioned philosophies, Aestaesys," Fusako said now that she was deep into the rhythm of the drive, so she could take her eyes off the road and look at Airwin with a polite smile. She also took the liberty to try out his Norian title, since she wasn't sure how best to address him. "My disinterest in politics doesn't extend to philosophy. Do you or the Norians have a philosophy that guides you in these difficult times?"