Sengoku Horizon

Look towards the Horizon

The Warring States Period: Fierce warlords fought for control of Japan, and many would perish. When a warrior falls, where does the passion they once held go? Possibly into something dear such as a favorite weapon or heirloom. These heirlooms have been labeled as “relics”, and those that carry them are labeled as “Scions." Recently more and more of these special relics have been activating, signaling the start of a great change as ancient power meets the modern world!

Now For The Local News, 7/10/2017 A blood red summer has come. As the Edo Bugei students finish facing off with the ikko forces all across the nation a massive steel ship floats towards Edo Harbor. The final battle between the Ikko Ikki rebels and the Edo Bugei students is about to begin. The lingering question now, just how much of Edo will be left standing once the battle ends?

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Yesterday at 06:45 pm
Salty sweat stung his eyes as he pushed the last log into place. He rested his body against it and the frame didn’t budge at all. He sucked in large gasps of air as his muscles ached and buzzed with exertion. A sour taste buzzed throughout his mouth and he staggered to one side, kicking aside a rock on the edge of the pit and spat. He dropped his hands to his knees and panted with his head hung low. Sweat slid down his nose and he could see his hair, shaggy and unkempt clumped together.

He inhaled deeply through his nose and stood up. Leaning back, he swept his hair back with one hand, dislodging the hair tie that had come loose. He closed his eyes and swept his hair back again before tying it back into a ponytail. He hadn’t been taking care of it, there were split ends, the roots didn’t match, and it was getting long, like the old days.

He took off his gloves and tossed them at the pack off to one side and considered his hands. They were raw, red, even with the gloves, it had been a lot of rough wood. He closed his fists slowly and felt them crack. He closed his eyes and breathed out slowly. When he opened them, it was time to get back to work. He knelt beside the ring of stones and replaced the one he’d knocked aside. Then he packed them in tightly with a layer of sand. The tarp was starting to peak up from the edges so he walked to the cart full of stones. He picked up the first and began carrying it to the make a second circle of stones.


Junko had seen and experienced more death since receiving his letter than he could ever have prepared for. He’d arrived at the school just after the earthquake and it had been a city recovering from disaster, but it was not the only one. In a way, he was also recovering. Hachi was gone, killed while doing his job leaving Junko alone with his mother. But he’d left gifts, his sword set, though Junko could not bring himself to pull them out, and the acceptance letter to the academy. Here at the academy, Junko ha abandoned who he was before, a metaphorical death to go with the others.

It would not be the last. Going out into the world, he’d seen more dead, abandoned and forgotten, ignored by society before and cast aside after their death. It resonated inside him, like a bell that just kept growing. He sometimes closed his eyes and saw their faces, not as they were in life but now, long after time had ravaged their bodies. He compartmentalized them but the memories would not stay in their boxes. They would escape and beg for help as he stood helplessly before their half eaten bodies, seeing it in vivid detail and seeing every small insect and animal now using them for meal and shelter.

That would not be the end, he was left behind as friends and classmates charged into the unknown on missions for the school to deal with rebel disruptions around the country. He had nothing to offer, so he stayed behind. Soon enough, the rebels came to the city. He killed people, bad guys, that’s what they were. They had done terrible things, they didn’t feel remorse. People told him all these things but it didn’t make him feel any better. He sometimes saw them in his dreams as well, not like the corpses, but like they were as he shot them. Their red glow fading to nothing as they came at him.

At the time, he’d focused on treating them like any other animal to be hunted. It had worked at the time. They were wild and savage, a well placed arrow put them down. It was important to kill them quickly so they did not suffer. It was a mercy. And yet, they kept coming back to him. Lights winking out in what could only be seen as accusingly. Junko wanted to be there for his friends, they were hurting, but he wasn’t sure he could help them while he was having such trouble himself.


The second circle was completed and he added more sand to hold it down. His shoulders were starting to ache. He walked over to his bag and leaned down to pull out a bottle of water. He took several long gulps and wiped his brow. His hair was coming loose again. He slid the tie off and poured water over his head and shoulders. It wasn’t cold, not anymore, but it was cool enough to provide some relief.

The pit had taken a while to dig and then refilling it partly over the tarp had been difficult too. Then there were the logs and bricks. Even away from the forests of home, his name had some clout, and he’d managed to get wood delivered and dropped off at the beach. Stone as well, but it wasn’t simple or easy. So much of it had been claimed for the rebuilding efforts. All he’d been eat with were scrap logs, not good for anything but burning. But that was fine, he would not begrudge anyone in need.

The bonfire was for everyone. He secretly hoped that a lot of people would come and be healed. But, in the end, he knew the bonfire was for him. It was selfish and childish. But he wasn’t sure that he could do anything else, not until the bonfire had been completed. He dropped the bottle on the sand again and ran his hands through his hair before rebanding it.

He couldn’t sit down, if he did, he might not be able to muster the strength to get up again as his muscles rebelled. He walked to the wooden tower he built. This was selfish, that’s why he had to do it alone. There were plenty of people who would probably have helped him. But he didn’t want to. It was his pride, he had to do it on his own if only to prove that he could. It wasn’t exactly machismo either. It was, also, a penance.


Junko had received very little medical assistance after the big event. Partly because resources were stretched thin and partly because most of his wounds were superficial. He was banged up, his hearing was returning, but he was technically healthy. Certainly healthy enough to keep helping and so he did. The city demanded that he find new depths. It needed him to be the best he could be and use his talents in a new way.

In the past, Junko had used his vision for hunting. He didn’t have to worry about anything sneaking up on him and he didn’t have to worry about anything getting past him. But he had taken it for granted. He had not had much use for it except as a casual way to avoid foot traffic during conversations. Even less useful was his ability to create a talisman that he could see through. Junko had no idea how that would be of any use until the disaster. For the last week, Junko had spent day after day hunting for survivors. Sometimes it was enough to walk through the rubble, other times he had to get deeper.

The first time he’d put the talisman on a drill, he’d vomited instantly and felt sick for awhile after. From that point on, they put it on the part of the drill that didn’t spin. He had been able to help some people. Locating them under buried rubble and getting the crews digging in the right spot. But those moments of joy didn’t compare to the far more likely event of him seeing nothing. Seeing those hopeful people and being forced to tell them that nothing was alive in the rubble hurt so badly.

They said his power was wrong sometimes. He never knew it to fail but he hoped it was, what else could he do. But he had to move on. Sometimes he’d be monitoring somebody in the rubble and he’d see as the last fading light went out before the crews could get to them. One heartbreaking day, they’d been digging and were almost to the victim when the whole thing shifted and the bright light went out instantly. Day after day, and the red lights were growing fainter and he was finding fewer and fewer as time went on. But what could be done, there was only one of him.


The wooden cabin was complete. Interwoven logs were stacked up high, slightly above his head. In the center of them all was the teepee of smaller logs. But above that and resting on the top of the box design was a pallet. On this, he set up the startings of the fire. The kindling and tinder would be placed there, then the fire would spread over the pallet and ignite the wood beneath. The small flame would turn into a raging inferno.

He took a small rock and set it on top of the pile of twigs to keep it from being blown away from any stray gusts of wind. The sun still was high in the sky, it wouldn’t be time to start the fire for another few hours. He wanted it blazing as the first shadows of night started creeping in. The fire would be a beacon. Hopefully it would call out the people of the city, give them a place to release their grief, to see their loved ones go into the fire.

But it was more than just the lost people. There were many missing, likely people who would never be found. There were bodies who would never be identified. People had lost friends, family, pets, jobs, livelihoods, histories, and memories. This fire might be a way to say goodbye, a funeral pyre for all that the city had lost to the rebels, the earthquakes, and whatever else happened in an unfair world.

Satisfied with his work so far, he collapsed by his bag and wrapped his arms around his knees. A bright light on the coast to draw people in. To attract them like a moth. But also to attract spirits. To draw the angry ghosts out from troubled minds and send them off to a peaceful final resting place as ash in the wind. After a few minutes of complete stillness, he reached into his bag and pulled out the buckets of paint and the brushes.

Lacking the physical objects to burn, he would let people make their own symbolic bodies to throw into the fire. There was a lot of left over pieces of wood and he’d also collected a large bag of flat chips. With brush and paint, people could write the name of what they had lost and give it to the fire for cremation. He’d also brought a sheath of papers but those might not be as easy to add to the bonfire. It would burn hot and throwing a wood chip in would be easier for sure.
Aug 4 2017, 10:03 PM
She needed a new wardrobe. Her clothes were ill suited to this more muggy and wet area. Her preconception of the coast had been a long road alongside the beach with her gang, not this busy, crowded, and always wet place where she had to walk everywhere. It was miserable. Back up in the mountains, it was dryer and all the clothes tended to be of a thicker fabric. Down here, those fabrics all absorbed water and held it close to the skin. Absolute misery. A few hours later, she was experiencing an entirely different kind of misery.

And it was the same today. What was supposed to be, and had started as, an easy and simple clothing excursion had turned into a scarring mess. It had all started, as it so often does, with a slightly too helpful clerk. The shop had been nearly empty which was a pretty lucky find and the merchandise was pretty darn reasonable, especially for what she was looking for. That being cheap and disposable clothes to go under her leathers. Or, better yet, some new leathers. There were always patches to be mended or replaced after all and Bu wanted to be ready when she got her bike.

Perhaps it was because it was so empty that she had found herself trapped. Trapped like a rat with the most over attentive clerk that she'd ever met. All Bu had wanted was help finding the leather stuff, if they had it, but Miss Clerk had gone off all about fashion and being fashionable and her colors and her seasons and her alignments and all kinds of other things. It was like being back in front of the camera and she wasn't at all pleased about it. Which wasn't to say she was displeased either. Mostly Bu was just flustered.

This was not helped by Miss Clerk's seemingly sporadic and erratic choice in clothes for her. Soft pastels, light frills, transparent shawls, none of it was her style anymore. But Bu couldn't get a word in edgewise. It was easier to just swing with the current and let Miss Clerk do what she wanted. Besides, the clerk wasn't wrong. Most of the choices were the sort she had been offered when she was younger. They'd look good on her, but again, she just wanted some loud clothes and some leather. Perhaps after she tried these ones on she would ask about the other things. It would be a waste to not try the clothes on after they had picked them out. Maybe she would even buy a few and wear them, it would only be polite. It wasn't as if she liked wearing that kind of thing.

Bu had relented and that meant a long stay in the changing room. It was a weird feeling, wearing more fashionable clothes rather than the rough leathers and recycled stuff. It put her in mind of a happier time, when she had sang her heart out and performed and shone like a light. She liked that feeling. But the memories of those times brought with them the bad memories. Almost every experience back then was tainted by that man.

What she had gained was overshadowed by what she had lost. It was like this school. She had lost her bike, her position, and her gang. And she'd gained a fancy magical toy. It didn't come with money or an estate or any clan ties, just a history she hadn't known or cared about and a few magical things that were neat but didn't make up for the loneliness, the feeling of being trapped. Bu was horrified to realize that she had started crying.

"Are you ok, ma'am?" This was worse, now Miss Clerk was intruding and here she was in some stupid sundress and she looked weak and pathetic and she couldn't stop crying.

"Ah-Ah'm fine." Bu fought but suddenly bawled. It was so embarrassing. Thank god it wasn't crowded or anything or she might have died on the spot. The girl peeked through the curtain and saw Bu curled up in the corner of the tiny changing booth.

"Ma'am." she hesitantly held out her hand and lightly touched Bu's shoulder. Bu flinched away and the girl pulled back before advancing the hand again. "Miss, what's wrong? Are you ok." Bu nodded unconvincingly and sobbed loudly. There were too many things going on in her head, too many painful memories. The clerk girl took Bu's arms and gently tried to pull Bu up to standing but Bu was a bit too much like a wet noodle. But in doing so, she revealed Bu's naked palm.

The brand stood out against her skin, she had taken off the gloves to see how the clothes looked. The salesgirl's reaction just made Bu's choked sobs come harder. "Oh, I'm so so sorry." the clerk apologized. "Are you ok?" Bu nodded her head and then buried her face into the fabric between her knees to muffle her sobbing. She'd have to buy this stupid dress now, she'd ruined it with her face juice.

The clerk pulled away. There wasn't much to that she could do and such open and rather public displays of emotion. So she pulled away, stepped out of the booth and closed the curtain. At least this way she could give some semblance of privacy and dignity. Not that there was much of that left for Bu.

It took several minutes but eventually she was able to compose herself. She looked at herself in the mirror and nearly lost that composure she had managed to scrape off the ground. She looked a mess, she hadn't looked this pathetic since she lost it all back home. She'd been so low that she'd attacked five bikers with her bare hands. She remembered the look on Yo's face. And Ken just bailed on them. She laughed and wiped her eyes with the hem of the dress.

Yeah, things had gone alright after that. This new school and new city was just a new opportunity to go beat up new friends. She pushed herself up to her feet and put a smile on for the mirror. Bu wiped her face again, trying to clear off any other sign that she'd been crying. There wasn't much she could do about red puffy eyes but if anyone gave her shit then she'd just deck them. Bu stripped out of the dress and started putting her regular clothes back on.

"Miss, are you doing alright?" Bu turned toward the curtain. She'd forgotten about Miss Clerk. Bu sniffed and nodded.

"Yes Ah am. Ah apologize about that, Ah was...Ah am better now. Just a few bad memories, Ah was weak."

"I apologize for my rudeness," the clerk began, "but was it something to do with your hand?"

Bu held up her hand and looked at the branded skin. It was a reminder to be sure, a reminder of what she had given up, a reminder of her crime. "Ah guess it isn't unrelated, it's not really pretty is it?" She turned her hand over and back, looking at it in the mirror. But it was also a reminder of what she had done in another way too, wasn't it?

"It's not that bad." The clerk said but Bu was stuck in a thought. It was a sign of her taking back her life. Retaking control, punishing the guilty one who'd ruined her. "It's hardly noticeable." Bu was still not paying much attention. Sure being sent here was a punishment, but it wasn't a real punishment, it was a slap on the wrist and easily a new opportunity to move forward in life with new tools and stronger people. A chance to toughen her fists against a higher caliber of person. The burn could be seen as a badge from the right angle. Proof that she could stand with the hardest of them.

"Honestly, you're very beautiful under those dirty leather clothes. I bet your boyfriend must feel very lucky." Bu smiled and then shook her head as the words started to register in the jumbled mess of a mind.

"No." she said rather overly forcefully. "No Ah don't have one. A boyfriend Ah mean." She shook her head vigorously. "Don't have, don't want, don't need." Bu stated adamantly. "One girl show is what Ah am."

"Oh?" said Miss Clerk, holding her hand to her mouth. "I've never met somebody like you before." She stepped into the booth. "What's it like?"

Bu tilted her head. "Well it's pretty good. Ah mean, Ah do it all, Ah've had a lot of experience." The girl stepped in closer and Bu scrathed the back of her head. "Ah guess Ah've always wanted to stand out and get some personal attention, you know? Ah mean, when you're with fifty other girls all trying to get noticed, you kind of want to be the one chosen."

"Did she choose you?" the clerk asked.

Bu frowned. "No one ever really chose me. Ah left, gave up. thought Ah could do things alone, be alone, but Ah was wrong." She slowly shook her head. "Turns out Ah need somebody else, it's just not the same. Ah've been hoping to make a new connection now that Ah'm out here but it hasn't worked out. Just ended up in a fight." Bu sighed and the clerk gasped.

"Oh no. Was it bad?"

"Not that bad." Bu just shrugged. "Fell off the roof but it happens. No harm, no foul."

The clerk's eyes bulged and she began to look at Bu even closer for any signs of massive damage. "How long ago did this happen? Were you in the hospital?"

"Nah, Ah'm pretty durable sometimes so Ah just ended up with a couple bruises and a twisted ankle. It was a week ago so it's all faded." She stood a little straighter, kind of proud to show off how awesome she was for doing something so dangers so casually.

"Wow." The clerk breathed and ran her finger down Bu's stomach, making her laugh.

"Hey, Ah'm kind of ticklish, you know?"

The clerk pulled away and held her finger to her lips. "You're still soft, you know. Not rock hard like a man would be."

"Thanks, Ah guess." This conversation was going in a weird direction and Bu was not sure where she was standing. Figuratively of course, she knew she was standing in a dressing room with a clerk. And she was only dressed from the waist down. Actually, she was suddenly feeling very confused. This felt wrong for several reasons. But surely it was her imagination, after all, this was a girl.

"I know what it's like to feel left out sometimes. Maybe I could help you out, since you're so new in town. And you can teach me what you know." She looked up into Bu's skittish eyes.

Bu was still trying to fit in words like these with the girl right in front of her. This was the kind of things guys said to get you into bed. But the girl was being friendly, right? Just trying to be helpful to the hick girl from up north. Maybe encourage her to spend a bit more money, just perfectly normal behavior.

"Why don't you try this one on?" Miss clerk held up a new dress and Bu took it. She was still confused as the clerk slipped out of the booth. This was all in her imagination, right? Nothing untoward had happened in here, nobody had even hinted at weird behavior. Bu breathed out slowly and regathered what wits she had left.

Well, she wasn't going to give up just because of some weird feeling in her chest. She held up the dress, it seemed like it might be a bit small but the clerk seemed to be pretty knowledgeable and Bu hadn't really kept up with the latest trends in fashion. But, in deference to that weird feeling in her chest and the heat she felt when she thought about the clerk girl getting in close, Bu kept her pants on. "Are you ready, come on out." the clerk said from outside.

"Ah'm." Bu said and stepped out. The dress was a bit tight, mostly around the chest where it brought the girls in and up tight. The hips were a bit snug but that was probably due to the rough leather riding pants. They weren't exactly designed for fashionable layers. Miss Clerk seemed a bit disappointed that Bu was wearing her pants but she hid it well.

"Oh you look so good. It really suits you." Bu was a little less sure about that but nodded and pulled down the back of the dress a bit more. It didn't go down nearly far enough for her liking even with pants. Probably would make straddling a bike pretty easy though. "You know, that's my favorite color." The clerk added. "And on you I like it a whole lot more."

Bu blushed. "Wh-wh-what? What are you talking about?" This was suddenly seeming to be exactly what it looked like.

"The boys in my level are all idiots. You sound like somebody really interesting." The clerk said, her finger twirling around one of her ringlets of hair. "I think you're very pretty and if you think I'm pretty maybe you could teach me everything you know."

Bu's face was redder than a cherry tomato. She had no idea what to do. Guy's did this to get something out of you but this was a girl. What was she supposed to do? With no other protocols in her head, Bu panicked. With snakelike reflexes, she punched. A straight jab into the center of the girl's face. The girl tumbled back and Bu's eyes went wide. Holy shit, she'd just punched the girl. What was that? Why did she punch the girl?

Bu looked left and right in a complete panic. She bent down, grabbed her bag and ran out of the store. She was several blocks away before she realized that she had forgotten her shirt and was still wearing the stupid dress. And then there she was, sitting on the bench hours later trying to figure out what to do. She wanted her shirt back, she didn't want to be a thief. But she also didn't want to go back and see that girl again. Why had she punched the clerk? Stupid reflexes. Bu buried her head in her hands. This day was awful.
Jun 13 2017, 08:58 AM
Bu sat in the library with her nose in a textbook. Some might think that this was out of character for her. Those people would be correct. From the right angle, it could be seen that inside the math textbook was actually a magazine catalogue with motorcycles and parts in it. That pen she held to her lips was not being used to highlight problems but to circle prospective purchases and that intense look of concentration was her building a budget.

She'd had to give up her old bike on coming to this school, passing it down to the new commander like the previous commander had passed down to her. And her bike from before was long gone. She hadn't really expected to ever need a new one which was, admittedly, foolish. Certainly she hadn't expected to need one so soon. Without a bike, Bu felt trapped, moreso than she already was. A bike meant freedom, even if you never did go riding off into the sunset to disappear forever, the fact that you could was all you needed to make staying a little more bearable.

She underlined the price of a body that she thought looked pretty good, the trick was finding one that she could comfortably straddle as well as lean against. No weird angles or boxy dsigns, she wanted it smooth, sleek, and aerodynamic. Speed was nice, especially if you could get that good kick off that threw you back into yourself, but more importantly was the look of it right now. She didn't expect races on the street or crazy chases in the night, she expected an attack to come while she was doing nothing on campus. Any danger would be coming to her so souping up the engine into something special could wait until later.

A few banners and flags would bring the whole thing together but she was a ronin now, a girl without a gang. She'd have to join a new gang which was not her scene, or start a new gang among the preppy nobles and wannabe heroes of the academy. That was just as unappetizing. Maybe she ought to check the history of her new legacy. She was a sion now, whatever that meant for her. Perhaps there'd be some thing in history to give her an idea what she should do, but she didn't feel optimistic about it. Nobody in history rode motorcycles and did anything cool.
Jun 13 2017, 08:42 AM
Bu didn't like this place, which wasn't really saying much. The school was a prison, a prison with a lot more freedom perhaps but a prison nonetheless. A lot of new rules, new territory, and new groups that had to be allied with, subdued, or destroyed as the case may be. And she wasn't particularly well equipped for any of those options. Especially the last one, but then, that wasn't why she was here. She was there because....because she was a thug, let's be honest. She was a thug, she didn't follow the rules, and that kind of attitude might be needed to fight off some rebel cult.

She missed her gang, her bike, her everything but then she had made the decision and been prepared to accept the consequences. She'd expected real prison and gotten this school. Best to just treat it like prison for ease of adjustment. One of the things she'd been taught before the old commander went off trading bars for stripes was that you had to make friends when you went to a new territory. Make yourself known, make it known that you were not going to be pushed around or taken advantage of while still showing that you understood that you were the visitor, that you were intruding.

In an effort to be diplomatic, Bu had done some asking around and found that there were several groups around the city, but she didn't care for most of them. Besides, she needd to meet with the one who held things up at the academy grounds first and foremost. So she'd sent out a message requesting that the leader of Iga Revival meet her on the roof. One leader to another. She didn't bother saying to come alone, though she hoped he would. If things went wrong, the last thing she wanted was to have to fight a whole gang by herself, not that it would stop her.

She wanted to put on a calm front, but it was hard in the unfamiliar clothing. THe uniforms here were crap, she'd gotten her sleeves rolled up and it was half unbuttoned and hanging open, but wearing it at all made her feel like an idiot. But she couldn't stir the pot too much too quickly. She was supposed to be staying out of trouble.

Bu looked out towards the city. She'd been told that there were cultists everywhere and anywhere, but she couldn't see it. Rooting out a conspiracy was not where her talents lay. But, at the very least, when they did strike, one person could be ready for them. Then maybe she could go back home and be free, or take a bike and go around the country. She would not supplant the new commander, it was not her place, it was against her code.
May 23 2017, 09:08 PM
Bunch of NPCs probably. But with motorcycles being a big thing, at least in the shop and more so than cars, there ought to be something devoted to it in the school. Maybe a full garage.
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