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Onsen Omake (Semi-Open OOC Welcome)

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((OOC/IC for other prizes are fully open. If you'd like to join the hot springs trip, you'll need to post a reason (maybe winning a ticket yourself?), which is why it's semi-open))


He walked up to the merchant, tossing a 100 gil coin in his direction. 


"Welcome! Good Sir, are you here for the lottery drawing?"


He nodded, giving a small grin. "So what kind of prizes are there?"


"Why Sir, I couldn't possibly list them all!" The Lalafell took out a long parchment and began reading from it. "A few of our lucky winners will receive tickets to the Camp Bronze Lake hot springs, some others will get a free ticket the our eating contest for desserts in the desert, and...", the list went on. By the time the lalafellin man had finished, he couldn't remember any of the possibilities. 


"So please Sir! Try your luck! Everyone is a winner!" Merc reached into a small box and drew out a card with a number on it. The card had a small number, embossed in gold ink written on it.


"CONGRATULATIONS SIR! You've won one of our grand prizes, a ticket for three at the Forgotten Springs resort, naturally at the Forgotten Springs here in Southern Thanalan! Bring your friends and have a merry time! All expenses such as food, drink, and inn are paid for!"


As he took the tickets, he had but one question for himself, "do I /even/ have any friends?" Certainly, a part of him had friends at one point, but that wasn't who he was now. Hells, he'd even done some terrible things to one of them...

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Natalie yawns and weaves through the crowds on patrol, when suddenly she spots the back of a familiar head, rising above the crowd. Her ears twitch in excitement, and her mouth stretches into a devious grin as she approaches the man. She'd been on patrol for hours, it was time for a break, perhaps a snack.








Nice Juicy


"Porkchop!" She says happily with a wave as she approaches. "What are you up to?"

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He immediately turned around. There was only one person who would call him that.


Perhaps a bit harsher than he had been lately, he growled, "why do you always call me that?!"


Seeing the tickets still in his hand, he tried to hide them away in a pocket before Natalie would notice them...


In a calmer tone, trying to collect himself. "Uhh...nothing. I happened to give the lottery a chance." He used his head  to point to the overly-excited merchant, which possibly was a mistake, as the merchant noticed him. "WHY MISS! This man just won tickets to the Forgotten Springs Resort! Would you like to your luck as well? Everyone's a winner!" The merchant gave a wide innocent grin.

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"Hmmmm... I call you that because Porkchop is Porkchop of course." She nods as if this was an obvious fact. Grinning at the merchant's words, "Oh... ho ho..." she chuckles. "Quite the luck you have. I might as well try myself."


She slides a coin across the table, "One ticket please," then reaches in and pulls out a small card with a silver number.


"Congragulations Miss! One of our silver prizes. An all you can eat buffet at Ul'dah's finest restaurant for a party of four."


Natalie pumps a fist up in the air, then her eyes wander back to Merc. She clutches the ticket close to her chest, "How many tickets did you get again?"


Natalie grins.

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Kage sighed as he walked through the streets of Ul'dah. His ears twitched at the idea of a lottery. He'd started to frequent some of the betting circles and a lottery? That sounded just fine.


He stopped short seeing the familiar bald head.


Then he gaped.


Natalie. Natalie was smiling at him. Merc. Frhanz.


... Porkchop?


Kage blinked and rubbed his eyes before they slowly rolled to the back of his head and he crumpled to the floor in a faint. His body hit the floor with a loud audible thump.

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He looked down to the three tickets in his hand. "Three. Heh, I don't even think I could find another person to even invite. Why don't you take them and bring a friend? It's not like I could use them." He passed Natalie two of the tickets as the sound of someone loudly crashing to the floor was heard. 


Instinctively following the sound, he looked around. "Kage?!" He looked over to Natalie, "you uh, might wanna take care of that one. I don't think Kage could handle seeing me of all people. Especially helping him." He started to slowly back away. If he really was lucky today, Natalie wouldn't try to drag him over. x_x

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Natalie blinks and takes the tickets, "Uh... thanks," she says in surprise as he walks off looking down at her hands as if she can't trust they're there. Her face breaks into a wide smile and Natalie almost skips over to Kage, doing a little twirl, if you can believe it.


"Kage!" She bends down and pokes him in the cheek.


*squish squish*


"Hey Kage!"


*squish squish*


She sighs and stops poking him, and instead walks to the nearby fountain, filling a bucket with water. "Quick, the Garleans are storming the city." She shouts, as she dumps it on his head.

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Merc makes a small chuckle, hearing Natalie's shout. While she might annoy him from time to time, he could tell she was a valuable friend to Kage. 


And the Garlean message would probably make him wake up faster than anything else. He half-hoped Kage would wake up and find him. Even if there was a part of him that felt an incredible urge to toss Kage into the fountain for fun, there was another part that wanted to make sure he didn't hit his head too hard falling down.

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"...Garleans are storming the city!"


Kage jerked, eyes wide from the water and at the noise. "WHERE?!" He roared, reaching for the flat blade he carried as well as his shield. He blinked as he realized Natalie watched him with a curiously wet bucket in hand.


He wiped his wet face with a palm, realizing that there -was- no actual threat when he saw him. The bald head. Again. So it really wasn't just a dream.


"YOU! Merc! ... Frhanz? WHATEVER YOU CALL YOURSELF NOW! Stop walking away!" Kage demanded. He needed to know how and why Natalie and the mercenary knew each other.


He shook his wet hair again, before softly trying to tip the bucket out of Nat's hands. "So, you look happy, Nat. What has you in such a good mood? I doubt it's my looking a fool."

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"If that was it I'd be happy all the ti..." She clears her throat and shakes her head the bucket tumbling to the cobblestones. "Hotsprings!" She exclaims and shows him the tickets, "And a buffet.... but hotsprings!" she repeats.


Patting his arm, "Don't worry, I'm sure you'll see him again. Anyway grab your stuff Kage, it's vacation time."


She taps her jaw, "But I don't have any leave days saved up." Natalie snaps her fingers suddenly, then approaches a local man, they haggle for a few moments before gold is exchanged, and they proceed to tear up his clothes. With a handshake he walks off, straight towards the local Brass Blades watchpost.


"Bandits... my caravan... all killed, forgotten springs." He collapses in mock terror.


Natalie taps her foot for a moment before her linkpearl crackles to life, "All available blades, investigate reports of bandit activity in forgotten springs."


Natalie grins at Kage.

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One nice thing about being aetherically-stable: Packing.


The echo of Fhranz had given him a lot of knowledge and theory on aether, but he hadn't quite put it into practice. Especially after his last attempt at a physick seemed to come out more like a ruin spell. Simpler tasks that didn't require a conscious effort worked well enough though, like the vast array of aetherial garments that Frhanz owned, and had seemed to adjust to Merc's larger build rather well. As always, Frhanz's prized possessions, a couple soul stones and some old-looking tomes would stay in the aether unless absolutely needed. Merc added a few of his own belongings to the inventory, like his prized axe. "Kinda hope I don't need to use that though..."


Ticket in hand, and a fresh tabbard, pants, and thighboots, he walked to the Aetherite Plaza from the inn. He hadn't gone near an aetherite crystal since "that" day, but a walk to Southern Thanalan could take days. "Hope this doesn't backfire..." He placed his hand on the large crystal and focused on getting to Forgotten Springs. Following what Frhanz had done, he imagined a door to the aether and stepped through, travelling a short path to a gate with 'Forgotten Springs' transcribed. As he stepped through the gate, he arrived safely at his destination. 


"Seem to be in one piece", as he patted himself down, making sure he came through all the way. Clothed. He rubbed his stubbly beard. "Could get used to that." As opposed to his last "travel" through the aether, the trip had been rather relaxing, probably due to the finesse Frhanz had always placed in the teleports. Ticket still in hand, he made his way to the resort.


Ticket still in hand, he was greeted by an overly-friendly miqo'te girl. "Well-come to the resort. I heard on linkpearl we had a winnerrr~! Pray-tell, you are not alone are you? The springs are meant to be enjoyed by many." And in a very small voice, "and the merchant did say he'd pay for everything. Everything."


She looked over to Merc, "Shall I show you to your room?" He nodded. She seemed friendly enough, and he could use the relaxation.

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Kage blinks and shakes his head grinning. He takes one of the tickets before giving Natalie a quick peck on her grin and raises an eyebrow. "So, Forgotten Springs? And a buffet? Let's go eh?"

He tilted his head, adjusting his beret as he pointed towards the Aetheryte Plaza.


"Time to investigate the Forgotten Springs, love."


Even if he could not use thaumaturgy as he used to, teleporting was still something that he could do. ...Even if it was exhausting. He was glad that he typically had his lighter clothes on his person. Closing his eyes he teleported to the Aetheryte at the Forgotten Springs, hoping he didn't fall sick. He knew Natalie would follow.

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Natalie blinks as he hurries off, "But... we need..." She holds out a hand impotently as he vanishes, "Bathing suits..."


"Guess he's just going to have to go in naked" she shrugs, and heads home to grab her things. She arrives eventually, but an hour or so after Kage. Who knows what could happen in the meantime~~.

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It had been ONE BELL since Kage had teleported to Forgotten Springs. One would say that he was quite out of his element. He had once been here... when he was swearing his Oath... It seemed so long ago.


Kage sighed, checking his pack once more. He wasn't joking when he mentioned he kept a pack of lighter clothes. He had the shorts he wore when swimming or bathing with him. A few of them just in case, as always. He hadn't needed to go home... perhaps that is where Natalie went.


He plopped himself on a rock, waiting to see if he saw Natalie. He should have just waited for her.

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As the young miqo'te girl led Merc out of the main resort building to show him his party's "private chambers", she spied a certain miqo'te sitting on a rock and a certain ticket he was hold. 


Excited to see another source of income "winner", she called out "Hey you! On the rock! Are you one of the resort winners?" As Merc looked over to who the girl called out to, he realized it was Kage. He muttered to himself "She would give him one. Not  single surprise there." 


The girl turned around, easily hearing  what he had said "Sir, are you acquainted with that man?" As he nodded, she immediately yelled out in joy, "EXCELLENT~! I'll show the two of you your room at once~", and began running towards Kage, calling him out as the second "lucky ticket holder". Merc followed. Walking behind, thinking of what the chances were that a fight could break out on the vacation.

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Kage jerked out of his idle thoughts as he waited for Natalie to appear. He had no idea what to do with this ticket but then he heard the shout. He twisted and gave a curt nod to the Miqo'te female.


"I've got this ticket right here, ma'am."


He smiled gently before giving a deadpan expression to the slow-walking figure following her.

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(Disclosure: This is full-on Elseworlds OOC for me.)


Warren sat unmoving in the pool. He wasn't even sure what he was doing in Bronze Lake and his mind flushed when he tried to remember. He'd been identified correctly by the smiling miqo'te girl while on patrol and listened to her plea.


"You've won, Mr. Castille!"


"...But I didn't enter anything."


"You didn't have to! Lotsa' people have won for other people. It's the way the world works!"


A gift. A lucky raffle ticket. For him. The whole scheme sounded like a set-up, and he'd arrived thinking it was one. The first several bells were checking up on histories, running profiles on the folks who were allegedly running it. Everything turned up clean.


Warren grumbled and sank up to his nose in the hot spring. Some luck, sequestered half-way across Eorzea by himself.

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Upon seeing Kage's expression, he couldn't help but laugh. In a genuine-sounding voice, "Kage! It's good to see you".

Hells, he was here on vacation, and he wasn't gonna miss his chance at some fun at least. If Kage had any issues, then they could sort them out later.


Reaching out a hand, acting in a friendly gesture so as to not tip off the inn girl, and possibly throwing in a little Ishgardian dialect to sound more like Frhanz, "let's enjoy our time here, shall we?"


With any luck, Natalie would arrive soon enough and maybe prevent a fight. Merc was trying to be friendly here, something he hadn't exactly been around Kage. Ever.

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While their out at the springs I am just imagining Aya walking randomly through the background in her bikini, maybe a little excited jumping or cheering "Whoooo!  Hot springs!"  They're second only to Costa for fun times, right? ^_^

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A large bundle of bags, is thrown from the Aetheryte with a distinctive pop. The bundle tumbles a few times in the sand, then a bedraggled Natalie emerges.


"I... brought some... supplies." She gasps as she sucks in air. "Oh!" She grins as she brushes her self off, "Kage! Porkchop!".


Natalie laughs, and slaps them both on the backs, pushing them together, "I'm glad you found each other so quickly. "Oh does she work for the hotel?" Natalie asks glancing at the uniformed female Miqo'te.


"Yes Miss... are you a member of the party as well? I was showing them to their rooms." The woman bows slightly.


"Rooms?" Natalie shakes her head, "We only need one! Let's spend some quality time together!"

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Natalie seemed to arrive just in time. He winced as she called him "Porkchop", yet again, and sighed. "You win. You can have the bloody nickname. I give up..."


He walked over to pick up some of Natalie's bags that had fallen. Giving just another subtle hint of an Ishgardian dialect, "Perfect timing as well. It seemed that Kage was getting bored all by himself."


If he were to survive with all of Frhanz's life floating about, there would need to be some compromises in his speech. It had been more difficult /not/ to sound fluent than before, and the..."enriched" vocabulary certainly wasn't a bad thing. Perhaps Frhanz had been too smart for his own good.


Returning to the group, he confirmed with the inn girl that Natalie was the third and final person in their party.


"Well then, let's enjoy ourselves, shall we?" If Kage was gonna be grumpy, Merc had decided to try throwing him into the springs, clothes and all.

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"We only need one! Let's spend some quality time together!"



"... let's enjoy ourselves, shall we?"


Kage couldn't believe his ears. But he had to. He couldn't even believe his eyes. The pain in his arse, the menace... and Natalie got along. Natalie wanted them to be in the same room as him.


He blinked. He blinked some more. He sighed, attempting to bend down to grab a bag. He turned to Natalie and the Merc. They were getting along. It wasn't a dream still.


His eyes rolled again, dropping the bag to the floor before he crumpled on top of it.

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The young miqo'te girl stared in shock. "D..does...he....do that often?" She looked to Natalie and Merc for answers. Answers they probably couldn't give, not knowing each others' side of the story. 


Merc looked over to Natalie. "Would you prefer to carry your bags, or Kage? At this point, they're kinda both luggage."


Maybe by the third time, Kage wouldn't faint at the mere sight of his worst enemy and best friend having a nice time together. The entire scene simply made Merc burst out in laughter.

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Natalie sighs and scratches her head, "What is wrong with that man? Maybe the heat is getting to him."


She bends down and pulls Kage over her shoulders, he weighs less than she does after all. "I'll handle him, he faints just from seeing you, if he woke up and you were carrying him, he'd probably explode."


She seats him comfortably over her shoulders as the employee looks on in confusion, "Onward~" She follows them to a room and plops Kage onto a bed. "By the way... how do you two know each other? Ex boyfriends?"

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There mere thought of being Kage's "lover" causes to him give a deep laugh.

"HAHAHA...", suddenly becoming extremely serious, "no." 


"Let's just say I've been the cause for a lot of pain in his life, and recent events have turned that around. At least I never tried to kill him. Mostly." Sitting on one of the luxurious looking couches in the room, "his side of the story is probably much better than a man who woke up in the desert without any money or personal memories, having to be hired out for petty mercenary jobs." His eyes were slightly distant at the realization of the man he had been. "...And....let's just say my temper got the better of me a few times. As I'm sure you're aware."


Acting as if a forty year old man were old and wise, he tried to give a more meaningful explanation. "When your life is unstable, you tend to seek out something stable. In my case, that was Kage, much to his dismay." "If he's ever mentioned a 'twelve-damned mercenary who won't leave me alone' or a 'crazy stalker with an axe', there's a possibility it was me." "But I've been working on those. I swear. Haven't used an axe in a dual since......well, before that bar fight. And I've recently come into some money, which has been nice."


"On a lighter note, not chasing him around the city with an axe has caused on concern." He flexed slightly, "now I have to plan workouts," grinning, "can't let myself go and get a gut now. What'd my wife say?" The whole conversation had taken such a light and natural turn, he hadn't even noticed that the word "wife" had come out.


Looking back at Kage, "and if he faints again, I say we toss him into the springs fully clothed to wake him up." "He's probably still a featherweight for his size."

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