Age : 24
Posts : 56
|Subject: An Inconspicuous Cave (Improved Perception training) Wed 16 Jul 2014, 9:14 am|| |
|The Ambient light of the rising sun was replaced all to quickly by the warm flickering of a torch as Katsu entered the cave. Upon first inspection one would assume the cave to be shallow and empty, but upon taking a closer look, a steep, narrow hole can be seen leading deep into what Katsu now knew to be an expansive cavern system. Katsu carefully and tediously moved down the hole, if one were to lose their footing it would be a fast, rough slide straight to the bottom, a mistake Katsu had only made on his first visit.|
Katsu fondly remembered the days that him and his brothers would enthusiastically explore the nation and its secrets, far away from the prying, worried eyes of their parents. It was on one of those thrilling, forbidden adventures, that they had found this cave, he remembered the adrenalin, the fear, the excitement, as they delved deeper and talked about the horrifying monsters they imagined to be lingering just out of sight. Those days had ended all to soon. Katsu would sometimes imagine showing his brothers just what they would see if only they had more time to go further, the subterranean rivers, the odd glowing fungus that lit the roof of the cave as if it had its own little cosmos, the strange bats and other rodents that would have no doubt helped fuel their young imagination of other fantastical creatures. But that time was gone, Katsu was a different person now.
When Katsu had begun to go even deeper it was partially out of a lingering childhood sense of adventure, part curiosity to see what might lay at the bottom, and the excuse he would use to justify going there, to sharpen his senses. If Katsu were to extinguish his torch the caverns would come alive in a whole new way, barely visible creatures would scurry about under the dim light of the glowing fungus, bats would swoop down, no longer frightened of the alien torch light. It offered Katsu a safe and captivating way to hone his senses.
As Katsu had continued this training and continued to explore, his curiosity was ignited in a whole new way. As Katsu delved deeper he would more and more often catch glimpses of something, hiding around corners, stalking him. With an unlit torch whatever it was became braver, perhaps seeking to satiate a curiosity of its own, Katsu and this odd creature would see each other, and almost in synchronism leap out of sight, Katsu's sense of perception progressed even further through his encounters with this creature. As their encounters continued Katsu began to try and deduce what it was, it seemed serpentine in nature, yet carried itself on two, clawed, legs, it moved silently, the only thing giving it away being the metallic Clink of its claws across the floor. The thing seemed to be almost playful with Katsu, until he intruded deeper into its territory. On Katsu's last visit the thing had straight up attacked him, scratching a shallow wound before extinguishing the torch and darting out of sight. This time Katsu was ready, he would go without the torch, a final test of his perception, and either capture or kill the beast.
As Katsu reached what he assumed was the beginning of the creatures territory he extinguished the torch, allowing it to fall the ground with a solid thud, announcing his presence. Oddly enough, Katsu had not seen the thing yet, though he usually would have at this point, but he knew it was there, out of sight, maybe it knew that play time was over.
This far down the cave didn't seem to suit the glowing fungus well, as they were far less abundant. Katsu's eyes strained to work in the dim light, had he not grown accustomed to this he doubted he could have functioned at all down here. Finally after entering a large chamber with no natural light, and having not yet encountered the beast, Katsu decided to allow himself to take a brief look around with his lighter. What he saw in the brief moment of light was a large, natural chamber, the only entrance being the one he had just gone through, with a large river cutting through, and various stalagmites and other rock formations obstructing the cavern floor. This brief moment of light ended with a screech, and with a douse of water hitting Katsu's lighter, the creature was here, it had spat water to put out the lighter, and now Katsu could clearly here its metallic claws scraping the floor. Showtime.
Katsu drew a kunai and slashed in the direction of the approaching footsteps, carefully aiming his swing from what little he could see of the creature, the sound of ripping flesh and a shrill scream pierced the silence of the cavern. Katsu saw the creature leap back, before darting out of sight, it had to be wounded, but not enough. More footsteps, this time fast, too fast, Katsu leapt out of the way as the creature pounced, a quick roll and Katsu was back on his feet, quickly making a counter attack, the creature dodged with ease and proceeded to dart away. "dammit" Katsu muttered under his breath. There was a brief pause, and then the horrendous, grotesque sound of ripping flesh, and then more quiet, this time Katsu did not hear the beast coming, but rather felt it, as it rammed into his side and knocked him on the floor. Katsu was stunned, how did it surprise him? the beast bore down on Katsu, striking him with its limbs, and Katsu got his answer, the thing had ripped out its own claws, it would be silent now. Katsu kicked the thing off and it once again darted away. Katsu readied himself for the next attack, desperately trying to think of a way to turn this around, he remembered the many times he had encountered it, chased it, ran from it, and now, fought it. There was a pattern, clear as day, Katsu knew what to expect, his suspicions confirmed by that slightly out of place sound, Katsu spun, and in a solid motion, struck the beast with his Kunai. This time the thing collapsed, and Katsu smiled.
After drying his lighter and illuminating the room Katsu went to inspect the beast, it seemed to have the body of a snake, but with short, thin limbs to help it move, spines lined its back, and two, thin eyes sat at the top of its head, staring back at Katsu. What was it? An ancient, long forgotten monster? A failed experiment? A rogue summon? As he watched the thing bleed out he felt a tang of sorrow, why? He had no purpose for this thing, no reason to desire its survival, maybe he had let himself grow attached to it through all these months? Maybe he admired its will to survive, its intelligence, maybe he thought he owed it his new found skill in perception. Or maybe he could tame it, maybe it remembered favours, mercy, maybe there was more to be gained from this creatures survival. A sly grin spread across Katsu's face as he performed the Mystical Hand Technique, the creatures wounds were not quite fatal if treated properly, and it did not take much time to heal, the creature cautiously stared Katsu down throughout the process. Finally the creature rose to its feet, face to face with Katsu, narrowing its eyes. Katsu extinguished his lighter, and dropped some of the rations he had packed on the ground, a peace offering, an indication that he would return. As Katsu left he wondered about this creature, what could it offer? could it be a pet? could it offer him further wisdom into sharpening his senses? This certainly wouldn't be the last time Katsu would set foot in this cave.
(Got a little bit carried away with this one in terms of exposition and characterisation for Katsu, my apologies )