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[RP] Enter the Cursed City

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The woman trudged through the crowded street, the hood of her jacket pulled up, and sunglasses concealing her features. Her body seemed to hum of its own accord, vibrating with a hidden energy, and people edged away from her slightly as if detecting it. Not that they could actually hear it, she mused. No, only she could, and only because she felt the vibrations in her very bones, nerve endings carrying the shock impulses throughout her frame. Hazel eyes, now a shade of golden brown, gleamed with a sardonic light as she walked with no real direction, lost in thought.

The portal opened and she stepped through, her disappearance completely unnoticed by passers-by, herself barely noticing the transition. She’d stepped into this parallel dimension where only the Cursed –others who had been “blessed” by the devil – could walk. She knew there were others here, as she had seen several before. This was the place where their souls gathered, though she knew not why. Perhaps this was their hell. It was a fair replica of the “real” city, she thought. Or perhaps the city was a replica of this one. Mirrored worlds were so bothersome that way. She pulled her left hand from her pocket, skin sparkling with what at first appeared to be body glitter as she angled her arm to check her watch.

Turning her hand over, she studied the large reddish crystal that filled the center of her palm, scraping a fingernail against the stuff. Despite the dense solidity, the crystal remained flexible, to a degree, as it was still part of her flesh. New crystal structures formed at the tips of her fingers, which she pressed together to create a single mass. Gazing flatly at the growing crystal, she watched as the slightly irregular orb disconnected from her body and fell into her other outstretched palm. She tucked the gem into her pocket with a sigh. At least she had a new piece to sell when she got back to the real world.

Stefan had been relaxing against a wall, enjoying a quiet cigarette while the world almost swam around him, the hordes of people going about their daily business barely noticing him. He took another deep drag from his cigarette when he suddenly felt the lurch as he got sucked into the devil's city and he resisted the slight urge to throw up that he always got when the portal unexpectedly appeared. Unfortunately for Stefan he had also been halfway through drawing in a drag from his cigarette, so the surprise caused him to burst into a coughing fit and throw his cigarette to the floor while he swore loudly before looking up at the "sky" and shouting in a general manner "Can't you give me some damnable warning?!" in the vague hopes that the devil might actually listen.

Stefan sighed and brushed his suit off as he looked around the street he was in before humming to himself and walking towards where he THOUGHT he could remember a bar being, if he was stuck in hell he may as well make a night of it. As Stefan walked his mind began to wander. He had always been curious as to whether his devil was THE devil or whether he was subservient to THE devil or perhaps the devil was subservient to him... Their politics all seemed so very feudal with demons swearing fealty to each-other, it was rather hard to keep track of. Stefan's thoughts continued in this vein for some time as he continued his slightly aimed attempt at wandering to a bar.

((This came out much longer than intended. -.-' Shion should probably look over it, in case something is wrong, since I go to quite a bit of detail and make a lot of assumptions.))

Xu Bai was used to getting a lot of attention. A well-dressed man of his looks was bound attract attention, no matter where he went. That's why it always amazed him how no one noticed when he simply vanished into thin air. Or turned invisible. Or switched dimension. Whatever.

It had been a sunny afternoon, a really nice day for a walk. A good day to die, too, Bai hoped, for the sake of whoever was dying right now in the third floor of the building before him. A moment ago he'd been walking in the street like any other man going about his business, but then he'd felt it. Death. It called to him, an irresistible promise of a soul to harvest - and an even more irresistible duty to do it. While walking, his form became ethereal and he shifted partially to another dimension, disappearing from the sight of other people. No one seemed to notice, not even those who'd had their eyes on him. That's how it always worked, it was as if his exitence was removed from reality every time he changed, and no one remembered he'd even been there.

Then came the pain. You never get used to feeling your own body high-speed rot all the way to a skeleton, no matter how many times it happens. Of course, after a while you no longer feel anything, your nerves are dead, but the beginning is... indescribable. Then came the equipment. Bai had long since stopped wondering about his clothes blurring and changing into ragged black robes, and a huge scythe materialising out of nowhere when he outreached his hand and gave the weapon a brief thought.

It was done, then. Xu Bai had changed into the very image of death, so terrifying that had the transformation not taken most of his feelings away, a glance in a mirror might make him tremble in terror. His existence had shifted partially to another dimension, a much darker one, where the sun seemed as weak as a lightbulb. He could still see everything that happened in the real world, although everything seemed... different. Slightly blurred maybe. Or maybe it was just the darkness. He wasn't sure if it was all in his eyes, which were now just a couple of ghostly lights burning in the darkness of his empty eyesockets, or if the distortion and abnormal darkness were caused by his existence between two dimensions.

Matter was now somewhat... subjective to him. He walked on the ground like everyone else, yet he had no need for doors. He walked through walls like they didn't exist. Maybe they didn't, not in the other dimension. Yet the stairs, oddly enough, did exist. Common sense was useless in this dark realm, its natural laws were different - yet logic and reason were all Bai had left, since his emotions had been taken from him.

He entered the room where the "stench" - if it could be called that - of death was strongest. He walked right through the wooden door, to find an old man lying on his bed. His soul - an ethereal, almost transparent twin of the physical body - was floating over the unmoving body. It was almost completely separated, there was only a thin silver cord tying them together. The old man had died peacefully in his sleep, his heart stopped, and the silver cord would snap any time now.

Normal humans couldn't see him, but a separated soul could. It noticed him, its eyes widend and its mouth opened to scream. It was right to be afraid - after all, a reaper has come to take it away. Before the soul could make a sound, the reaper's scythe swung, severing the silver cord. For a moment, there was a shocked expression, then the soul lost its form and became a floating ball of light.

It was pure and strong, full of energy. Bai suppressed his hunger and reached his skeletal hand towards the soul. An hourglass materialised on his palm, golden and ornate, with blood-red sand inside. The soul let out an inhuman screech as it got sucked into the hourglass. One more poor soul to be taken to the devil. It was the third one: the next one would be Bai's.

Xu Bai turned to leave the room. There were two reasons to leave quickly: one, pure souls like this attracted others besides reapers. Bai had no desire to meet an angel after taking a soul from right under its nose. Two, now that the presence of death was weakening, he'd soon change back to human, and it was always a good idea to get away from the dead body before that. The guilt could hit really hard otherwise, and there was always a chance of witnesses.

The process of returning to life was pretty much the same as the process of changing to a reaper, only in the opposite direction. His scythe and hourglass vanished, his clothes returned in place of the robes, and flesh was born out of nothing, knit over his bones and finally kickstarting his vital functions back to operation.

Bai gasped for air. It felt wonderful. As did the heart pumping in his chest. Feeling anything at all felt wonderful. Even the pebble in his shoe. Then he opened his eyes, expecting them to be assaulted by strong sunlight, forced to squint.

"...Oh. Damn." He wasn't back to the human world. He was in the city of his employer, the devil. "What do you want now?" he asked aloud, unsure if he'd be heard. Usually he was dragged here when the devil wanted him to turn over his collected souls, but this time it'd only been a few weeks since the last time, he hadn't had time to gather many souls yet. The devil was usually more patient than this.

Sighing he started walking in a random direction. It didn't matter where he went, the devil would find him when it wanted to.


Eight sets of legs to the right and seven sets of legs to his left.


The rush of wind above him and the unfurling of a parachute.


The sound of feet against the iron cargo boxes.

"I've been set up for an ambush..."

In a flash, two knives were flying towards the two on the iron cargo boxes. They hit there mark in no time and both fell dead. Another knife above and the man was separated from his parachute. That man fell to his death.

"Spl~at!" Mr. Hanes yelled. "Your friend makes a very nice spl~at!"

The 15 men on the ground were very mad. He couldn't, nor did he want to, make out their curses against the sky. From the sound alone, he could tell they were armed with cheap swords, cheap guns, and cheap combat knives. He could almost smell the old, army surplus armor the men were wearing around their chests. And they were very loud.

"Assassination missions are meant to be silent," he pointed out to the men. "You guys are just-"

"Get him!" one yelled.

Mr. Hanes sighed. This was starting to get old really fast. He mumbled to himself before finally opening his eyes. He turned straight to the man and looked him dead in the eye. "You really want to die tonight..."

With a grin on his face and a glint from his eye, he was speeding towards his opening, knives twirling in his hand. He ducked under the first ones punch; his hand moved up and sliced the mans heart in half. A kick from the left and he's in the air, kicking two men with a sickening crunch. He lands on yet another one and stomps on the mans face, crushing his skull. He hears a bang and quickly ducks and spins in place, dodging the bullet. He throws a knife at the man; the satisfying sound of a thunk tells him the man is dead.

"Come on! 5 of you haven't even given me a warm up!"

They all rush in at once, in a very well spaced, well practiced circle. He clicks his heels together and knives pop out of the tip of his feet; he does a handstand and spins, effectively cutting all their throats.

"And done!" he says with a flourish. He clicks his heels and puts all his knives away; he tips his hat down and smiles. "Hows that for a devil?"

Blur. A bright, waving blur. Sens eyes opened slowly, light striking out at her eyes. " Guh.. " She groaned out, lifting her aching arms up to cover her face form the offending light, rolling onto her side and pressing her elbows into the dirt. Grass. She was outside. What had happened? the last thing she remembered was running into the woods.. So far away, so.. foggy. Like it had been years ago. Sen pushed herself up, stumbling a little and leaning against a nearby tree for stability until her balance and vision properly returned to her. She looked up, craning her neck in discomfort, groaning a bit. She was so stiff.. how long had she been asleep? She blinked the stars and spots out of her eyes and rubbed them roughly, shaking her head and looking around to get her bearings. Something was off.. it took her a moment to notice.

It was dark. How could it be dark? was the blinding light her imagination? no.. the ground around her was lit up. She narrowed her eyes and looked up slowly, seeing a seamless stone pillar of sorts, tall, narrow.. and at the top, light shone down through a tree. She blinked a few times, touching the stone with her fingers nervously, feeling the rough, but very stable surface. " What is this..? " She whispered aloud in ancient Fury, stepping back away from the pillar and stumbling backward, feet landing on a hard surface beneath her feet.. more of that stone material, in a pathway leading off in two directions. " A.. path? Road? " she asked aloud again, looking around slowly. This forest.. it was spread out. lots of grass, and quite a few trees.. the occasional bush, but nothing else. If there were any animals, she couldn't see or hear or smell of them, and everything seemed so.. intentional. it was unsettling. She looked down at herself, checking for injuries, checking her head for blood.. was she dreaming? dead? she dearly hoped not. if this was the spirit world her mother spoke so highly of, she might prefer going to the pentacle.

She sighed loudly, calling out with her hands cupped up over her mount. " Hellooo~? " Her voice loud and echoing. Nothing. Unsettligly so. Usually when you yell, birds awaken and flutter off.. or at least it does not sound so.. reverberated. like ti was bouncing off of stone. She pursed her lips and fixed her shirt and trousers, the material looking the same as it had been. her hair was a mess, but not unmanageable. She pulled a band off of her wrist, and tied it around her hair into a ponytail, the length reaching her lower back. She had not had the chance to put her shoes on before running into the woods, and she had no pack, no supplies.. how would she survive here? Best to get moving in any case. The paths stones felt uncomfortable against the young Furys feet, so she stepped off the path, comforted by the feel of the grass, even if it was strangely even, and began walking, not sure what she would find.


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