Ghost Touch 3 bit – Pieces of a Puzzle

Resting her chin in her hands, Miss Ochi grinned, recalling how she’d first put together that Something Was Up with Kurosaki Ichigo. First, there were the sudden bouts of class-skipping; though his grades hadn’t slipped, by dint of what heroic effort she could only imagine. Then, and almost concurrently, came the sudden rash of unexplained scratches and bruises… and one quiet, grim-faced Kurosaki joining Chad in his daily kenjutsu instruction.

A physician-alchemist’s son, taking up sword-training. And he was good at it.

Yet somehow, carefully, never too good. Mr. Kagine had been overheard to swear Kurosaki was deliberately flubbing some of the moves. Just enough to keep him from any consideration for the competitive team roster. Not that he ought to be on it in the first place, Kagine would hastily add; what swordsman in his right mind wanted to fight without armor?

“Sword-sages do,” Miss Ochi had informed him cheerfully, having run into a few of those rare and closed-mouth swordmasters in her decades of wandering worlds and planes. Decades most of her fellow teachers didn’t even suspect; knowing some very odd alchemists was handy for many, many things. Potions of longevity, for one. “Oh, and some duskblades, and every once in a while you run into a really strange sorcerer-”

Which always made them stop listening right there. Kurosaki didn’t have sorcery. He’d been tested. Thoroughly. Over his father’s strident objections.

Very interesting, those. Most people thought highly of having a sorcerer in the family; it was almost certain proof of dragon blood in their lineage, and so a connection, however tenuous, to the noble creatures that ruled all of Yamato.

Kurosaki Isshin, however, was not impressed by sorcerers. Or nobles. Or even dragons. He was what he was, a healer who treated the patients who came his way, and until three months ago, Ichigo had had every declared intention of following in his father’s footsteps.

Not anymore. Though he doesn’t know it yet.

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22 thoughts on “Ghost Touch 3 bit – Pieces of a Puzzle

  1. Not anymore. Though he doesn’t know it yet.

    Actually, he is still following in his father’s footsteps. Just his much earlier footsteps.

    Through to be fair to Ochi, she doesn’t know that.

    Hmmm . . . they don’t think Ichigo has any magic at all because he isn’t a sorcerer. Which we know isn’t entirely true – he isn’t a sorcerer but he can use a type of magic. Somehow I don’t think shadow magic is commonly known to the people of Ichigo’s world. Makes me wonder what else has been ignored or is otherwise slipping by the radar because it doesn’t fit in the normal categories . . .

    what swordsman in his right mind wanted to fight without armor?

    One where the added weight is unnecessary hinderance?

    Or their most common foes can tear through most metal like butter?

    “Sword-sages do,” Miss Ochi had informed him cheerfully, having run into a few of those rare and closed-mouth swordmasters in her decades of wandering worlds and planes

    Show of hands, whose brain immediately thought of at least two people at reading this. Hint, one of them is tall, dark of hair, and a natural genius. The other is smaller, hair of scarlet, who says oro a lot.

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      1. … Well. Now I have some new heroic NPCs to stat out for my next Pathfinder group.

        (Hmm, I’m thinking… Slayer Archetype? With a unique smattering of Iajutsu from Sword Saint/Kensai and an Unchained Monk’s ki pool? Maybe throw in some feats for both Sorcerous Bloodgift and Swashbuckler Deeds? Or are they just multiclass… Decisions, decisions.)

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      2. S’okay. I just like thinking about character design aloud for DnD and it’s off shoots. I find the rigidly numerical system calming in the abstract.

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  2. I really like Miss Ochi as a character in this story. I’m very glad you are giving her some air time. I’ve been smiling at her humor and smarts all through the two snippets you’ve posted. Does she get to be more enlightened later on? I’m almost hoping Ichigo stays a mystery.

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  3. It actually happens. Try watching UC Gundam. Anything with Bright Noa in it. The man is the very definition of Reasonable Authority Figure.

    I will admit it’s rare though.

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  4. >what swordsman in his right mind wanted to fight without armor?>

    Fun thing. There was a video about a western medieval book (Talhoffer documentary) which depicted among many other inventions and designs shows methods of combat in which an unarmored opponent can effectively fight and hurt/kill a fully armored one.

    If you google ‘half swording’ and check the video links it’s the second one from the top.

    That’s the fun thing about western style swords there are just so many ways to use the things. *G*

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  5. Well, Dragons actively run the place? Huh. Specifically Chromatic or Metallic? Or a mix of the two varieties with the various planar types showing up as they will? I’m guessing mostly the dragons who run things are of the ‘This is our land, we’re just letting you use it. Don’t break anything we care about and do everything we tell you to if we bother to tell you anything and don’t bother us. Got all that? Good, we promise the Metallic dragons won’t raid you, the lawful dragons will negotiate before raiding, and the CG will just occasionally show up to pull random pranks. And the CE will probably keep the raiding to a minimum’ types?

    If the dragons are like I’m guessing, then probably it’s the dragon descended nobles who really run the sh-… Ah. The Dragonmarked noble houses. You had mentioned those before. Well. Hmm, but obviously this isn’t bog-standard Eberron since the dragons are still an active presence and…

    Oh. Oh-ho-ho. You’re a fan of Gatekeeper Orcs… And Chad’s a Half-Orc with an apparently unknown father. Well. That explains an equivalent of his random spiritual armor for this setting.

    Speaking of everyone’s favorite Half-Orc, I spotted that reference to Rao last chapter. Is that a DnD god I don’t recognize, or are you using the Kryptonian god of the Sun as the church encouraging Chad to Pal around?

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      1. Oh, that reminds me: I forgot to include this in my earlier comment: If Isshin’s a healer, what class is he?

        Or maybe more accurately: what class do people /think/ he is?

        Because while there are Arcanists who can pull off healing, usually you’re looking at Divine Casters for healing magic. But no one’s talked like Isshin is a Priest or Cleric or Favored Soul or nothin’.

        So, we readers are pretty sure he’s whatever class(es) makes a Shinigami (Duskblade was actually something I considered, but there’s that silly alignment restriction I didn’t want to assume you’d hand wave), and so can supplement stuff with healing Kidou as needed… As far as I know the only DnD Alchemist class – one of those other Arcane Healers – is in Pathfinder.

        So how do they think Isshin is accessing healing alchemy? Because unless you’ve got one ‘eck of an obscure feat tree than you need access to healing magic to make healing potions/items. Or is that something Artificers can do that I’m just not remembering?

        Or am I being too meta about this? That can happen to me sometimes. I just… I figure even not understanding classes and levels in setting, people can recognize ‘Ah, you need to know X before you can do Y’ and access to healing spells to make most healing items would fall under that.

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      2. /Nii~iiice/. Definitely answers any questions… And if Ichigo was intending on /actually/ following that path… hmm. Does that mean he’s got access to some miscellaneous skills to at least understand what’s going on when the Spellcraft checks are called for? (Or understand better than most front-line classes usually do at my rate.)

        Because a well-rounded and flexible party is always excellent for group survival! Along with at least one character no bigger than small size category. Easier to sneak away from TPK situations and pay for resurrections that way.

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