Moisture hung heavy in the early afternoon air. The steam rising off the warm water seemed to grow thick and thin, like the rhythmic breathing of a sleeping child. Outside, a lone shinigami stood watch, both to protect the person inside the bath, and to protect others from her.
Sylvia breathed again, and settled further into the warm water. To say that her meeting with the captain commander of the Gotei United had gone poorly would be the world's greatest understatement. Now, she waited on a messenger to find the captain of the Fifth Division, who she was told could give her information that she and the Vandenreich had needed.
Another sigh brushed passed her lips, and the dense fog of steam rising from the bath rolled out towards the door. In the changing room outside, she had left her clothes neatly folded and within a bubble of reishi that most would be unable to penetrate; even her leiden hant had been carefully removed, which now made it a task in and of itself to repel the abundant reishi around her on her own.
The Quincy stretched out until even her toes were splayed apart in the water, and breathed. She'd thought a bath would help her to relax and stay calm while the messenger found the captain, but waiting was still waiting, in the end.
Restless with the commander's words still on her mind, she sat up, until the water was just below her collarbone, and played idly with the Quincy cross that hung from her left wrist. Her untied hair hung heavily down her back, before being pulled away by the current she had inadvertently made in the water.
The weight of her mission was growing heavier with every moment. She wondered whether she could even carry it for any longer.
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There was a gentle displacement of water, lapping softly at Sylvia as she saw about in the bath. Ulv's arrival was so silent and so sudden it would be easy to miss her, wrapped up in one's own thoughts as Sylvia was.
"Aye kitten. Heard about your promotion. And subsequent attempt at Mirja-Style Diplomacy" Ulv spoke, to let Sylvia know she was there, and to broach the subject. And to frighten the life out of her, probably. There was struggle sometimes, realising that people weren't quite the same as she was in awareness and power. Being practically born into it would do that to a girl.
She had been too far into her own thoughts, perhaps. Lost in that maelstrom, she was sure she would've heard if anyone had approached, or that her guide would alert her when someone was entering. Neither of these things had happened, however, and the Quincy nearly jumped out of her skin as a familiar voice and presence appeared with frightening suddenness.
Sylvia had yelped aloud, and in her rush to react, slipped and fell underneath the water of the now shared bath. She returned to the surface a few seconds later, dripping and spitting water, but ultimately, no worse for wear. A bashful look of utter embarrassment looked at Ulv from behind the blonde locks hanging over her face, until she was able to brush them aside and behind her head.
"Ms. Quincy? Is there something wrong?" The man's voice came from the other side of the curtain.
"Nein. Nein," Sylvia called back, glancing between Ulv and the curtain all the while. "I slibbed, is all."
Once her guide had been assured that things were alright, she grinned back at Ulv. The warmth of her flame, masked as it was by the bath, met with and joined that which came from the redhead in magnitudes more than she could ever manage.
"Schould I efen bother to ask how vu already know about that?" The blonde giggled and smirked a little bit, and returned to her seat, not too far from the larger woman. She sighed, "Zis looked much easier in zee mofies."
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"Inferno Vizard Queen is not just a petty title. My network of information is vast and robust before you factor in my capability to keep an eye on basically the entire Seireitei at the same time. But hey, don't worry to much about it. You are still allowed to stay and haven't been executed yet, so I say you've done a great job. Mirja was kicked out of Vastime, just short of being splattered across the wall by Hayden when she tried to diplomat" Ulv explained. Maybe not the best consolation, but Ulv wasn't super great at that sort of thing.
"zee mofies are already done. Each knows what the other is going to say, and each is given what they will say in return and how they will react. Narrative causality doesn't, unfortunately, drive real life. So it's more effort. But, talk to auntie Ulv. What did you and her say that so upsets you?"
To be entirely honest, the title that came out of Ulv's mouth made her laugh briefly. It was so grandiose and bordering on edge that she couldn't help it. Then again, maybe something like that suited the woman perfectly well.
"Vell," Sylvia did her best to stifle her grin. She hated to laugh at Ulv's expense, but she couldn't help it. Just being around the woman made her more joyful, and so much easier to succumb to those feelings. "Frau Kyoraku-Hayden gafe us permission to mofe zrough zee Godei's territory. That vas good.
"Then, sche said... If Schadowfall vants to attack us after, zee Godei vill side vith them und hand us ofer." She fell quiet for a moment, though surely, Ulv could feel the anger she was trying her hardest not to let out. "I didn't take it vell." She had begun to play with her bracelet again, as a means of calming herself.
"Zere vere no less than four Godei schinikami at Beijing, fighding zee undead. Two of zem vere confirmed vizards vho had lost control. Zee other two vere vith me, hiding behind ein magic barrier or being of no helb. One I had met before, und sche vas trying to destroy Hollow, instead of burify zem. I nearly killed myself vith Vetterhexe because of zee Godei's incompedence.
"Und now, zey vould rather vipe us out again, to appease demons und Hollow." She had said more than was necessary, but the events of Beijing had been troubling Sylvia for months. It felt good to finally say it.
She sighed again, and looked up at the other woman. "I know it's not fair to chudge zem all, but how can ve call zese people our allies?"
This is a correct alternative to sleeping and staying inside, yes? No doubt after Ulv’s warning about taking care of her own wellbeing, Elyss would at least make an attempt at something to relieve the stress hanging over her shoulders. Of course, the redhead completely her own duties for the day and focused her mind on ignoring everything else around her to finally get the rest she so well deserved. Though, she felt the need to do something different than just resting, something a bit peculiar of her. Many have spoken about the public baths around that provide a nice moment of relaxation and serenity for any who partake in them. Elyss was a bit unsure about a public bath, but surely a place like it would have strict rules on tomfoolery and indecency.
As she entered the area, she could already tell nothing of major concern should occur for a guard stood right outside the entrance, but she paid little mind to his existence as she entered and stripped herself as required till only a towel covered her form. Mmm… Is she a bit pudgy? Hugging herself, she couldn’t help but feel slightly self-conscious of her body: the way her muscles bulged as she kept the towels still, her chest taking up more space than she thought it would, and the fact that the towel hugged her so tightly. Mmm… Maybe this was a bad idea, but she’s already here, and she’ll be damned if she backed out of something so easily. Besides, it seemed like none other was around. A quick soak to ease her soreness wouldn’t hurt for just one small hour.
Why? Why of all places? Two faces she instantly recognize as she walked into the bathing area: Ulv and Sylvia. Both of them she is a bit miffed about having to experience once more in a situation such as this. Her arms only hugged herself tighter as she starts backing a bit slowly. Why is a Quincy in a bath with Ulv alone? Do they know one another? Is the world really that small? Ugh… Elyss feels like she doesn’t want to actually know the reasoning behind this situation, so it seems her trip will have to be cut short. Maybe she still has enough time to escape and retreat and come another day.
"That does sound bad. Tone-deaf, surprisingly not like Abalia. Out of context? Misheard? Misunderstood? It's easily done in high stress scenarios. I have done it several times in the past, so that isn't something to worry about. Don't let it bother you" Ulv told her, sliding into the water a bit more, and giving Sylvia the eye of really judging you right now.
"Nine. There was eight Shinigami there. Myself, who was preventing it from becoming a continent-wide calamity, Kuro and Henrex, who were dealing with one of your own - Sofia - who was there to make the place worse. And Colin and Jaeden, who were dealing with the source of the issue.
But on the Vandenreich side, despite having several high powered Quincy that would have been well capable of containing that situation, they sent one Gemischt who nearly got herself killed rather than accepting her limitations and not getting herself almost killed. It's an arguable point who was the incompetent ones there, Sylvia"
She would then smile and look to Elyss as she walked in, gesturing with her head to the bath. "Come soak, dear. It will do you good on multiple points"
"Ja," Sylvia agreed quietly. "I haffe... I haffe been questioning zee Vandenreich's leaderschip, Herr ast-Auramazda especially." She paused, and wondered just how much of that she should say aloud in her current location. Maybe that discussion would be better had at the Harbour or Stadt des Lichts?
"He sent me chust after mein promotion. I vasn't told vital information. It's been months, und ve're only chust acting on Fräulein Montero's betrayal.
"Und..." She paused again. Ulv's words were cutting deep, but she couldn't call her wrong. She sighed again, "I'm vaiting to speak vith Herr Okami now, to ask him about his fight vith Fräulein Montero." Slowly, she slid closer to Ulv and rest her head on the woman's shoul- er, on her arm.
She had hardly reacted to the entrance of a third individual, and one whose signature she recognized. She tried not to think about how their last meeting went, with her electrocuting the woman and running off.
Last edited by basswalker on Sat Jan 25, 2020 4:57 pm; edited 1 time in total
Ugh… Of course Ulv was going to call her out as soon as her presence was made slightly known to both the women enjoying the baths. Elyss has no idea what the conversation is about, but she feels it’s something a bit on the hush hush. Still, she doesn’t want to hear Ulv berate her about skipping out on this chance to relax simply because of silly reasons as not wanting to impose. Though, it’s more the reason that Elyss wanted to avoid any shenanigans that may occur with being naked around Ulv. As much as Ulv speaks such nice words that uplifts her spirits, the woman is quick to transition into playful flirting and beyond.
With a defeated sigh, Elyss gives up and returns to the bath turning her attention away from Sylvia as she slips in with her towel still on letting her red hair spread out from around her head as she sinks and feels the warm water soak her skin. She couldn’t help but let out an exhausted sigh as her eyes closed and the fact that she has company slips from her mind as easily as they bothered her. This is actually rather tranquil.
"Sofia is an earth-shatteringly powerful Quincy, on a scale you can't begin to comprehend. You have nobody in the Vandenriech capable of going toe to toe with her, and she has fled to one of the most dangerous orginizations in existance. Do you want the Vandenreich to charge after such a foe, screaming curses and flailing arms?"
Ulv asked, before nodding to Elyss. It was a coincidence beyond her ken that the two would know each other, so she decided to introduce. "Elyss, this is Sylvia. Quincy friend. Sylvia, this is Elyss, my daughter of sorts kind ofish if you squint hard enough"