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- "Walk with your head high, blade in hand, and never accept defeat."
- — Asa
Asa was born shortly before the arise of Sengoku Jidai (or, the Warring States Period within Japan). Her father, fearing that his only child would be caught, abducted, and abused in fashions he would never want for her, taught her all he knew of the blade.
This form she had learned, dealt with the drawing and sheathing of one's blade. Iaido it was called. Asa learned the very ways which she could conceal her blade as well as draw it in a multitude of fashions to not only confuse her opposition, but more importantly, to kill her opposition. Her training continued into her early twenties until her father was killed. She had challenged the two men which had killed him however, they would not raise their weapons. Despite them not drawing their swords, she charged them and was quickly bested.
With a foot upon her face, one of the told her:
"We aren't your average ji-samurai woman...if you've a problem, take it up with Nishke."
After kicking her in the face, the two left. She laid in the dirt unconscious until the sound of thunder brought her out of her slumber. The next day, her father was buried. Despite having a cold due to her being out in the rain the previous night, she buried her father. In addition to this, she immediately left her mother and sought revenge against her wishes.
Asa traveled the land honing her skills until she was greeted by a woman. A foreigner with green eyes and red hair. With sake in hand, they spoke. She offered an alliance to her, but not one of the Shogun's pacts or anything dealing with Japan, but one in darkness. Asa was offered to use her blade to end the lives of others.
Before she spoke another word, Asa searched about the area with her eyes. Judging from the actions of those around her, this woman was not alone and out of the people happily drinking and talking only a handful of them were actually minding their own. The rest had been focused on Asa.
"This is too exposed for such a conversation. If you wish to continue it, it will be done outside of prying eyes."
Standing, Asa paid for not only her sake but the woman's as well. Watching her leave, the man whom had served them both sake had leaned in and asked the Messenger what should be done.
"I will speak to her on her own terms."
As this was said, the Messenger held a small roll of paper with the words "black island" scrawled upon it.
Days later, Asa awaited the Messenger, however, as she reached the destination in the dead of night, she was greeted by none other than a green-eyed, red haired woman. Without her robes or hood, she could see her quite clearly.
"How did your travel go?"
"...well enough. There were no guardsmen about."
Coming to a stop, it then hit her.
"I suppose you had something to do with that?"
"Ah, I'm innocent." With her arms raised and a smile upon her face, Asa hardly believed the Messenger was completely innocent.
"Sake?" Asa looked to the railing and spotted a full flagon. A foreign object from the West but one she was familiar with.
The two women drank. Speaking of Japan's history and even history and events occurring within the West. Asa knew well enough it was merely verbal foreplay to soften her up to the main point for which they were both here for. That said, she chose to cut the formal foreplay and ask a question which was on her mind ever since she left the Messenger behind the first time.
"If I am to embrace this choice, can you do me a favor?"
"Hmph, well that depends on the favor, love."
"...I want someone...by the name of Nishke."
"Vengeance is it? Or is it passion? Or romance? Or..."
"He killed my father."
"Ah....passionate vengeance. I will help you locate them, if they are still alive. With anything found, I will relay it to you when you're not preoccupied."
Twisting the small cup within her hand, Asa closed her eyes and nodded.
"Is that your way of accepting my offer? A bobbing head can mean oh-so many things these days."
"Embracing more than accepting."
"Ohhh. Well, that said, all that is needed is to seal that choice."
"A kiss. Naturally."
Asa ceased to move at this point.
"Oh, I am very serious of this as it is our...custom. For the better of words."
Lightly growling, Asa set the small cup upon the railing, still holding it within her grasp and sighed.
"Egh...just get it over with..."
With an arms wrapped around her waist and a slightly chilled palm against her cheek, the Messenger kissed Asa. Asa closed her eyes as she did not want to see what she had accepted while the Messenger closed hers out of enjoyment. Even when she leaned against Asa, it seemed as if the Messenger was enjoying every second of it.
After what seemed an eternity, the Messenger slowly pulled away from her yet, she made sure to lightly bite Asa's lip before letting her go.
"Do be sure to meet me here as if it were this very night for assignment, Asa."
She wanted to ask how she knew her name, but if she surmised correctly, then this Messenger had been following her for quite some time. Though, it mattered none. If they helped her find Nishke, she would owe them for that debt.
Yet upon this Seal...or Kiss, she had become a Contract Killer. Those with wealth were oft ones she was assigned to behead and as such, she carried her contract out to the very end. Rising officials and politicians were slain. Over the time of five years, she had built upon her reputation in terms of stealth, precision, seduction, and outright brute force.
Deception was an art and as such, even her allies knew not of her when they sought her out. Of course, the Messenger could always find her in some fashion.
However, in June 1467, she was given an odd contract. This contract in particular was of no true interest at first until she met the man whom she was to kill. His name was Yoshimasa. Ashikaga Yoshimasa to be precise. This man was not only in ties with power, he was the current Shogun.
She knew that due to the current Shogun having no heir, a discrepancy had reared and in the faces of the warrior clans, she could tell that war would soon erupt. Yet, she worried nothing of this due to the fact that this contract would be the pinnacle of her career. Of course, it would not be easy to get close to one with such power or status; thus she began her surveillance.
She studied the men whom guarded the Shogun but more importantly, she studied their strengths. She had heard of several renowned warriors ally themselves in order to protect this man and as such, she would need to know just how to bring each one down. While in the capital, she made contact with the Messenger once more.
"Your employer, the one whom has asked for you, is there."
Asa had become accustomed to the darkness and the fact that the Messenger preferred to make contact within that darkness. However, Asa ultimately believes its so that she could get her customary "kiss", so that it would not attract attention due to the darkness. Yet, even that was something which Asa could also do without much rejection to as it was the Messenger.
Looking him over, he was roughly in his mid thirties. Bald, frail, and in the company of five guards.
"Just letting you know..."
The Messenger turned away to leave before stopping.
"Oh, but before I forget..." She said in a song-like voice.
"Forget? Since when do you forget?"
Asa looked back as she asked that question and was not surprised by what the Messenger would say.
"A kiss for a secret."
Asa scoffed before pinning the Messenger against the rooftop and giving her the kiss she wanted. Biting her nether lip, playing with her tongue and even lightly playing with her. However, the two stopped when the Messenger gently pushed Asa upwards.
"Let's not get carried away now."
Getting to her feet, Asa crossed her arms while the Messenger wiped a small trace of saliva from her own chin.
"Hmph...stingy aren't we?"
"No...your employer is that of which you seek."
Asa froze. Her eyes were agape with the words which the Messenger spoke.
"Yes, he is "Nishke", Yamato Shinjuro to be exact."
As the Messenger pointed to him, Asa's brown eyes were now fixated on Yamato.
As she watched the man from the rooftop, the Messenger noticed the sadistic smile upon her ally's face.
"Do remember to be professional Sasaki."
"...I'll remember that..."
"Ah, well I suppose it to be rude but, why've you not ask of my name?"
Asa looked back but said nothing. Upon looking at Yamato did she answer.
"It isn't being professional."
The Messenger giggled.
"Well, by the next time we meet, do address me by name."
Lightly scoffing, Asa asked the Messenger of her name.
"I did say next time didn't I?" With that said, she vanished; as she always does. Returning her sights to Nishke, now known to be Yamato, she knew that he had been one to roam about at dusk with his "entourage", that said, there was a possibility that the same two men were with him out of those five. Killing them would be sickly sweet...but orders are orders.
Asa plotted to kill all six of them.
As daylight approached, Asa took a temporary retreat into a dwelling which was uninhabited in order to rest for a few hours. By eleven of that same morning, she was in the middle of her surveillance that war had broken out. Men began to rush about and once she saw the first spray of blood fly, she immediately sought out Yamato. With chaos and fighting, she knew the guards around him were either scattered, near him or dead.
One of the guards she had come across while another she killed herself but only after pulling him out of sight. As she stalked her prey, she watched as his guards did their best to fend off other attackers but were overwhelmed by sheer numbers. As she passed them by she looked down to the faces of the men and saw them both. The same two whom were present and whom initial killed her father. With a small waive and a smile she continued on as one reached for her while the other died while staring at her.
In July of 1467, the Ōnin War had begun. Her opportunity had failed and as such, she fled. However, not before she caught eye to her "employer" losing his head amidst the chaos...
It took days, yet she managed to reach the village. This area was used as a temporary retreat from authorities as well as a place she could easily rest. Here, she had setup a small "civilian" life in which none would or could suspect anything of her.
As she arrived, it was in the middle of the night and as such, everyone had been fast asleep. Due to the uprising which she had escaped, practically all the men had left in order to fight. Of course, there were also a few women here whom could hold their own with a blade. Slipping into her home, she crept past a distracted Nikai, whom was trying to cook, however, she had been huddled over and regurgitating after she decided to taste her own food. After that, she made her way pass another room. This was Shira's sleeping quarters; just without Shira. That small kitten of hers was well awake. She knew so due to its eyes reflecting the light and the fact that the kitten stared at Asa. After a few seconds of silence, the kitten finally gave a small "mew". Greeting the kitten with a wave, Asa continued on.
Finally, she entered her own private quarters and as such, she set her blade at rest, and set herself upon the floor.
It was her first contract in which she had failed. Despite war breaking out it was easy to lose her target but at the same tie, there had been several opportunities as well. Sadly, she chose to retreat after taking her own revenge. It was not much a difficult choice as both woman and man were being killed, but at the same time, there would have been an increased chance of her dying if she chose to go after her as such. That said, her employer was killed--which relieves her of her contract as she would not have been paid upon completion and with that, she took his sword as a personal trophy.
It was of little use to ponder on the terms of war, let alone what started it. Perhaps it was a slowly ticking bomb the entire time? Shaking her head free of the political thoughts, she slowly succumbed to slumber, she believed that she had made the right choice to avenge her father. In her mind, all was true and all was well...
Until Morning had Come
Asa awoke to screams and explosions. Instantly getting to her feet, she armed herself before charging outside. To her horror, Kyoto had seemingly followed her to her own peaceful retreat. Women were slaughtered for resisting and the few men which had remained were picked off by archers.
Hoshino had been pinned to the wall of his home by arrows while his wife was forced back into that very same home. Without a second's delay, Asa charged into the home and as soon as she set a foot across the threshold, a sword nearly took her head clean off. Parrying the man's sword, Asa pivoted and then thrust forward, impaling him. Withdrawing her blade, she then drove it into the man's skull.
Following the screaming, Asa soon came upon two men stripping Hoshino's wife, Kimika. Quickly yet, silently approaching, Kimika caught sight of Asa whom then remained silent for a second after knowing what would happen and as such; Asa took the Wakizashi which he had upon his waist and then bashed the other man with her shoulder. As he fell, she hurled the Wakizashi at him which entered his chest and pinned him to the ground.
Helping the other woman to her feet, she told her to head south to the stable. Asa had several horses which could carry many of the villagers to safety and from there, Asa advised her to head towards the Ryukyus. It was a small haven which Asa originally hailed from as well as a haven for criminals and thieves. Asa was well-known in this area as well as respected by some. After the woman dressed, she did just as Asa had advised.
Exiting the home, Asa then engaged a group of men whom were pillaging homes and forcing women to gather in the center of the village. She fought as best as she could and saved the lot of them, however, she was ambushed. She was unable to hold her ground and as such, Asa fled, suffering from arrow-fire and grievous wounds along the way. She doubled back to the dwelling she used as a home here and once she returned, she came across Shira.
Shira and Nikai helped run a small food stall out of their shared home and as such, the three of them were friends. Collapsing upon the floor, Shira immediately did what she could to tend to Asa's wounds. Bandages were applied and ointment had been placed yet, she would need days to recover. Upon the door being kicked in, Asa rose to her feet yet again but ultimately fell to one knee. With Nikai panicking, Asa told Shira of the same place to head for a horse as well as a place in the Ryukyus to hide. For Shira, she was even more precise:
"Head to Kuroshima in the Taketomi Prefecture..."
"I'll do it and bring Nikai but you have to promise not to fight until we all meet up!"
Asa had acceded to Shira's ardent petition. It was a fool's choice on her part yet, one she would honor for as long as she could. Shira had also bade Asa to head out first as they would easily catch up to her and after being reassured, she took her leave.
After she had left the village behind, she slowly and painstakingly made her way to the stable which she had pointed many in the direction of. When she arrived, she had found it set ablaze. Horses were running about, women were screaming as children were crying. She could not run nor could she hide, thus, she stood her ground once more. Challenging the men, they laughed at her as she quickly closed the distance and decapitated one of them--immediately stopping their laughter--from him, she took his blade and engaged another while dual wielding. Negating his attack with her blade, she drove the other into his skull; drenching them both in his blood.
As she faced the third, Asa was knocked to the ground and before she could rise, she felt something wrap around her legs. She cursed her luck upon realizing it was a rope. Without warning, she was dragged off. Her blade still in hand, she tried to turn onto her back but a stone had painfully sliced into her stomach and her cheek. Increasing her grip upon her blade's tsuka, Asa turned and pulled herself upwards with her free hand by her clothing, and cut the rope which had acted as a tether to the man upon horseback.
By doing this, she uncontrollably was set down a slope and after suffering cuts and scrapes from more jagged rocks, she last recalled entering a body of water which after that, she lost consciousness.
Emerging from the river, she observed her surroundings before trekking any farther.
It was a welcome thing. Especially after her recent experience. Dragging her battered body across the wet earth, Asa came to a halt as she recalled the last things she remembered.
Shira had begged her not to fight. Yet, Asa knew better. Reality would not allow her that luxury; especially with the life she had willingly chosen. Continuing her initial pace, she kept her eyes forward and upon spotting the open local, she easily recognized where she was.
She had emerged from a river in Osaka. Her mind could not comprehend the name, but one thing was certain: She needed to reach Kuroshima.
Her youngest son and one whom was named by Asa herself. Kuro took warmly to her as a child does by all naturality, however, with the coming of his abilities, he relied on her more than before. He wanted to learn and harness his abilities so that he could protect her. She knew of this to be the truth, but she also knew that he often watched the Ryukyuan named Mi~Na as she trained. He learned to hunt and stalk people and prey with a swiftness that rivaled her own and when she found out why, she was not upset. She was rather happy that her youngest had found one at such a young age that he wanted to protect or even love as well.
It warmed Asa's heart to teach him what she knew. Whether it be by blade, claw, fang, or simply hunting wild game; she took pride in raising her children the best she could while she still drew breath.
Sieg was named by his father, her husband. He also carried the name of his grandfather--a man whom he had never had the chance to meet--and with it, it marked him a Champion by definition. Sieg was honest but most importantly, he sought methods to save the lot opposed to himself. He was caring but stern. Strong but gentle. Lastly, he was far more human than even she was herself. Asa could ask for nothing more for her own views on the world were darker than that of her children and for them to be raised with at least a hint of innocence, she could sleep easier knowing that she has done the best that she was able to see them both grow and live honest lives.
Unfortunately, with her death, the two now seek a manner of possibility to kill Aneko. Despite this being something she would never wish, she can understand their motivation all too well.
A powerful Hybrid. Born in Persia, he made his way about the land scavenging and surviving. To this day, he has not told her much of his past as he has said it is best for her not to know.
This she respects.
He fought alongside her and fended off or killed Lycanthropes whom were in pursuit of her. Willingly exposing himself to danger in order to protect her. They were two wolves, both strays by nature, whom had been brought together by chance.
Oddly, these two were close. Respectful to one another and feared by all else if working in tandom. Malice was one of three friends which Asa freely spoke to. The others were Arsenic and Heresy; the latter, like a daughter to Malice and just as powerful.
When it came down to Asa's escape, Malice contronted her, but it was to warn her of the path she had chosen. In the end, Malice allowed Asa to escape without so much as to lift a claw or intone a spell. Malice understood what Asa had suffered and as Malice (at that time) had not been degraded as Asa had been, she understood her pain as did she understand her humiliation.
Asa was a warrior. she fought, tooth and claw in order to defend her home and the innocents which inhabited the land. The war which was raged upon Japan was more than Asa could handle and it was out of sadness and regret that Asa made her choice to choose Life. In the end, Malice chose to head the search for her and purposely led her sworn kin (excluding Heresy) in the wrong direction and in time, searching for her proved to great a risk--this led to Aneko temporarily abandoning the search. Malice was then made to stay close to home, yet, this was no act of paranoia, Aneko had become suspicious.
Her former Queen. Asa was on the brink of death when the Messenger, whom introduced herself to be Aneko found her and when she did, Aneko offered her another choice. To live, or to die. Asa chose life over death and Aneko granted her that choice as well as the power and the curse which carried on to her children. While alive and within the Silk Road Ruins, Asa was touched and teased in fashions that a woman has no right to inflict upon another of her own gender. After years of enduring this torment, she fled. Not on any day, but the day which Aneko would claim Asa as her own. It was not a marriage but it was close enough.
It took nearly 60 years for Asa to be located and once she was, Aneko met her personally. It was through deceit which she lured Asa and that same deceit led to Aneko enjoying her body once more before outright killing her. Indecent and exposed, Asa died within the very same place which her children were born and it was by Aneko's fangs that she met her end. Ironically, this is also the same place which Asa and Aneko first formed their pact in which Asa embraced the choice of becoming an Assassin.
To follow her demise, her husband, Lev Volkov, a half-breed of human and Werewolf challenged Aneko and was killed in no time at all due to him being only a half-breed.
|Main Characters of Hell|
|Asa | Agony | Aneko | Isai | Sephtis|