Author Topic: Backgrounds  (Read 301 times)

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« on: October 11, 2019, 02:38:27 PM »
Jin Da Background

I woke with a jolt as light flooded my eyes, the sudden intensity causing blinding pain. I was tied to a chair. A voice suddenly rang out from the darkness.
“You will tell us about your plan to steal one hundred million Dollars from my employer Mr Wancheng”
I remember thinking it was possible I was in over my head.
Then the beatings started.

Born May 10th 1991 at ten minutes past ten at night, Da Jin was a sickly frail child, but the first few years of his life were happy ones. His family lived in Tai Kok Tsui, his parents Hai and Ling ran a popular small noodle restaurant. When Jin Da was just five years old his Mother died giving birth to his Sister Meili. Matters would only go downhill from there, his Father now had to give even more of his time to keeping the restaurant going and Jin Da was expected to help where he could. He Father was consumed with stress and Jin Da found him to be increasing distant.

In early 2001 a new crime lord came to Tai Kok Tsui, Me Wancheng quickly started running a brutal protection racket.  Hai did everything he could to keep the restaurant open, look after his children and pay protection money. But it wasn’t enough, in 2003 after being two months behind on payment he was beaten, still he tried to pull it back, he believed all he had to do was work hard enough to fix the problem. The stress from Mr Wancheng’s thugs led to a fatal heart attack, Hai died working in the small restaurant he had loved. He was thirty-three years old. His children were orphaned, as far as Jin Da was concerned the only man to blame was Mr Wangcheng.

Jin Da and his Sister moved to Sham Shui Po district to live with Hai’s sister Jia, she was a kind loving woman with no children or partner of her own and probably couldn’t really bear the financial burden of two extra mouths to feed but she felt she had to for the memory of her  brother. Jin Da dreamed of revenge, it was all he wanted, to hurt Mr Wangcheng in the same way he had been hurt, to take everything from him. He started skipping school, wandering the streets of Hong Kong to distract himself. He started stealing. At first for the thrill but later for the challenge, he fell in with a group of similar kids. By the time he was sixteen his aunt was forced to kick him out, the police had been around a few many times looking for him. If he didn’t want her hospitality then he was old enough to look after himself now.

Jin Da spent a few years as a thief  but over time he grew restless, he started pulling quick confidence tricks for even quicker money, he was clever enough to stay ahead of the law for a few more years. This lasted until he was twenty five and he was caught cheating at cards by Taoist Mage and professional con artist Cheng Xilai, instead of being offended Cheng saw promise in the young man and brought him on to be part of a small group he ran who pulled off big scores preying on the rich.

The next ten years were good ones for Jin Da, he learnt much from his new gang, even finding out he had a small talent for illusion magic with some encouragement from Cheng, after all Confidence tricks are simply lies that make reality what you wished it to be, illusions were the same principle. He entered a relationship with Jian Qu another member of the gang who specialized in technology. He even managed to go back to his aunt and Sister and beg for forgiveness. Lying that he was now a legitimate businessman, either way he had enough money to help support his Sister which was the main thing, all those years though one burning need was still inside of him. To make Mr Wancheng pay. He tried to convince Cheng to take him as a target, but Cheng ruled him too dangerous. Jin Da accepted this but over time is gnawed at him more and more.
In the end Jin Da destroyed his relationship with the gang, in place of the revenge he sought he went out drinking and partying to the late hours of the morning, he cheated on Jian with other men and lied constantly. Eventually Jian broke it off, the lies were too much, he didn’t think Jin Da knew who Jin Da really was, he was just whatever lie was most convenient Cheng believed Jing Da had become a liability due to his obsession and so had him thrown out of the gang.

It took Jin Da a few years to form a gang of his own, and as far as he was concerned now was the time to strike out against Mr Wancheng. He hatched a stock market con. The mark had been trying to move on from his gangster past and turn legitimate, unfortunately most of his investments in the stock market were not paying off due to the sudden turn of fortunes.Jin Da would set it up so Mr Wancheng believed he was an insider who had a piece of technology that allowed him to hack into the data from the Hong Kong Stock Exchange before it became public and thus invest with a 100% success rate which was still highly illegal, however the investment required Mr Wangcheng transfer Jin Da the money to act as broker. Jin Da used all his savings to give a return on the small first investment, intending to take the man for everything the second time round.

This did not go to plan. Jin Da was not at his best, blinded by anger and pain and drinking too much, the plan was shoddy, he and his gang were caught, but not by the police. It was much much worse than that.

The beatings lasted a while.
I talked quickly after that, tears running down my cheeks I gave up everything, who I am why I had tried to do what I did.
Mr Wancheng sat in the corner listening, his eyes blazing with hatred , after he heard my confession he stood up and pulled out his gun pointing it directly at me
There was a loud bang and the world faded into blackness…

Except it didn’t.

Jin Da has returned.

He’s been sighted on the street, talking with contacts as if nothing were amiss, he been sighted playing poker with old friends in musty dark rooms, it’s even said he’s been seem out his favourite bars, drinking and talking late into the night.

And there are odd reports of Mr Wancheng, of the strange dreams he’s been having, about the impossible things he’s been seeing in his house when day turns to night. It’s said that a vengeful spirit has gotten it’s claws into Mr Wancheng, and who knows who that could be, Mr Wancheng had many many enemies after all

The two things are probably unconnected I’m sure.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2019, 11:50:07 AM by Secretly a doom bot »


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Re: Backgrounds
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2019, 05:21:31 PM »
Excellent!   8)

Great start .. looking forwards to finding out more about the hunting of Mr Wancheng!


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Re: Backgrounds
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2019, 11:35:05 PM »
A common phrase for expressing how much you care about someone is “I would die for you”. How many people do you think actually mean that?

I’ve said those words about Chiyo - my little sister - since the day she was born. Our parents never paid Chiyo and me much attention but it wasn’t their fault though, they worked hard to support us and they obviously cared about us but they never had the time available to them. So naturally, when Chiyo came along I was thrilled to have a sibling to spoil with affection and, despite me being five years her senior, Chiyo and I have been closer than anything. I took care of her growing up - I’d brush her hair, make her breakfast, get her ready for school, cheer her up if she had a bad day and sing her lullabies to help her sleep. We used to walk to the local park each week to spend some quality time together and I generally watch out for her. My existence revolves around her; she is my pride and joy.

I would die for her. I would kill for her.

One day though, she started acting strangely. She was unusually quiet and reserved, seemingly sad and scared all the time. When I hugged her, she seemed visibly uncomfortable, and she’d insist that she wanted to be alone. I pestered her for weeks, constantly asking her what was wrong and promising everything would be alright if she told me.

Eventually she broke down... and what she told me still haunts me.

Our mother had asked Chiyo visit one of her childhood friends, a rather successful and influential businessman named Mr Zhou, to return a jacket he lent to her the evening prior. When my baby sister did as she asked and met this man, he’d turn out to be grotesque, a disgusting monster that trapped her in his office and molested her. He said if she told anybody, no one would believe her and she’d get in trouble - that if she said anything to the police, he could make it all disappear. That he could make herdisappear, too.

I have never been a violent person. But watching my precious Chiyo cry about her innocence being stolen broke my heart, and something inside me snapped. I wanted to make sure that beast could never touch her again. So I came up with a plan.

The next day after school I walked home with Chiyo and told her that I loved her very much, and that I would be going away for a while. I said goodbye along with a promise that I was taking care of her ‘problem’ and that the monster that touched her would pay for what he did. We shared one last hug - the first hug in weeks she’d leaned into and accepted - and I left for Mr Zhou’s office.

I was very careful. I avoided the staff, the security cameras and made sure to bring gloves so as to not leave a trace. I planned on making his death look like a suicide: his office had a balcony that was the perfect height to push him over. I’d leave a number of clues that he’d taken his own life which would be supported by news I’d overheard from my mother that Mr Zhou had been having a stressful time with work and marital issues.

But it all went wrong.

I had crafted an excuse to be at his office, and once there, was charming enough he wouldn’t want to send me away. I baited him out to the balcony, and everything seemed to be going as planned… but when the time came, I didn’t push him hard enough.

The bastard regained his footing. I tried shoving him again, but I’d lost the element of surprise and he knocked me back. I growled at him that I knew what he’d done to my sister and that he would pay with his life, one way or another. A dark expression crossed his face, and he shoved me back inside his office. He locked his office door and closed the blinds as he dragged me about the room. I did not expect such a seemingly weak man to have such strength! I kicked and pushed and bit at him, trying to break free from his grasp, but he was too powerful. He kicked the back of my knee, sending me to the ground, and began to strangle me.

I can’t let you leave here. You’ll ruin my life. You should have stayed quiet. I’ll make you disappear.” He hissed between gritted teeth.

I felt my vision blur, becoming light-headed as I struggled to breathe. My grip on his wrists began to loosen as my strength drained away. The last thing I remember before slipping into unconsciousness was a grin slide onto his face as he removed one of his hands, lifting my skirt as he whispered “I liked you better anyway”.

I woke up in my sister’s room. I don’t know how much time had passed since I blacked out, but my sister was crying on her bed. I instinctively stroked her cheek, but she didn’t acknowledge me at all. It was as though I was invisible.

I think the realisation of my death truly sunk in when I saw my disappearance being covered on the local news. Some said I was a teenage runaway, and others speculated I had been abducted during one of my afternoon runs. But Chiyo… she knew what had happened to me. She knew that Mr. Zhou had made me disappear after I went to confront him about what he did, and she was terrified of telling anyone else in case he did the same to them. It destroyed me to see her like that.

The police called off the search after they found my body hanging from a tree in the woods. I suppose it’s rather ironic that my death was declared a suicide. People were shocked, claiming I had always been a quiet girl but they never suspected me to be suicidal. My school coach held a seminar on reaching out for help if you’re depressed and a bench was placed in my memory on school grounds. They had a funeral for me, but when Mr. Zhou showed up to ‘pay his respects’ to my mother, Chiyo naturally became inconsolable and left. If I could, I’d have strangled him.
Since then, I’ve dedicated my unexpectedly extended existence to protecting Chiyo. Whether I’m alive or not doesn’t matter - I’m still here. She still needs me. I won’t leave her alone in a world full of monsters.

After all, how many people really mean it when they say “I would die for you”?
I'm canonically a coward.


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Re: Backgrounds
« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2019, 07:54:00 AM »
Great opening!
Dark, and emotive ... and extremely clear why you resisted reincarnation!  8)
« Last Edit: November 24, 2019, 07:56:53 AM by 50 »


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Re: Backgrounds
« Reply #4 on: November 26, 2019, 05:06:50 PM »
Mósǔn de yuányīn

I was not born the same way a mortal man would be. My life begins as soon as I parted from mother tree and so does the journey to find the earth to seed my roots. Humans called that day Sunday thirtieth of September, I called it the first cycle. I am now well beyond three thousand cycles old. Well I would be if the men of metal had not cut my life short.

I didn’t wake up often within my first few hundred cycles, I only stirred when the odd animal brushed up against me but nothing caught my attention. Why would anything make me divert my attention to them instead of caring after myself? Maybe I should have taken more notice to what circled me in my early cycles. Maybe then I would have fully notice the slow encroach of man.

My attention was finally diverted and caught by the steady news of our kind dying to these humans. Upon waking to my nearly thousandths cycle I saw than man had settled using the bodies of my kind to live in, much like the animals of the land but instead they were dead. Naturally, I feared what would happen to me as I was now surrounded by humans and because of my fear I stayed awake and alert for nearly fifty cycles.

Within those fifty cycles nothing happened to me like that what happened to my kind but something new was created. Small red lanterns were hung upon my reaching branches, scripts and pictures were tide and leant upon my trunk.

Sensing no imminent danger I decided to rest again. I was not aware of the amount of cycles that had passed but when I woke the village had changed around me, with each house standing as its own piece of art. I gazed around wondering how I could have missed so much and then I saw myself, or my physical self. I had always stared out from my body but now I had a different perspective on the world I was in.

The small lanterns that hung from my branches each held a small flame which caused a dance of shadow and light to play on my golden leaves. A light breeze ruffled them as well as the long verses of golden script the humans had delicately placed upon my lower branches. I had never seen myself like this before, not so beautiful. I realised now I had never truly looked at the world, not until that moment.

It was then, a woman from the village spoke to me. She startled me as I was so entranced by the beauty of the surrounding world. When I was born again I was like a human infant, unable to speak or form sentences. All I did, all I could do was sit and listen to her, taking in every detail she spoke. Nearly half a cycle had passed when she finally stopped talking to me. At the time I did not understand, but she thanked me and made her way to my physical body. She began to pray and recited some of the stories she told me including a new one of her ailing father. She prayed for his health and safety. Again I sat and listened as she prayed to me. To Me. I knew this as every word she spoke gave me a greater feeling of power rushing through my body.

Over the next few weeks she would come and sit by my physical body and talk to me, telling me about her daily life and how she would go about it. I began to learn how to talk and act as a human, with my slight natural instincts accenting my actions, and I began to talk back to her. She was delighted with my ability to speak. Soon I had the whole village talking and praying to me to the point where I was able to move away from my physical form and explore the village.

The elders taught me their magic, the mothers taught me how to care for others, the men taught me how to fight and the children taught me how to keep a pure heart.

I can't member how many cycles had passed but the young woman who had once breathed life into me was laying in front of me and her many children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. They had waiting till night to start the reading of her will. I had not expected anything, to be true to myself I had not expected feeling the way I did or the way they felt about me. When the rest of the family had been called out and gathered their new possessions, then it was time for me, for my name to be called out. I had not realised at the time that the village had given me a name. To talk to my kind we have a way to distinguish each other, a signature is the closest I can compare it to, but a name was something unique to humans.

Mósǔn de yuányīn. It was strange being called by a name for the first time. It was not a name like those used by the village. It rooted my position and place with them much more than my physical body did.

The young woman presented me with a beautiful dress and told me to wear it when I could. This was then when her soul moved on. I promised I would follow her and protect her wherever she might turn up.

My plan didn't last very long however, as that was when the men of metal and fire descended upon the village.
"Spartans never die. They're just missing in action."


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Re: Backgrounds
« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2019, 07:14:19 PM »
Beautiful and portentous - look forward to the next instalment. :)