It was raining today - a light trickle, but enough to send most scurrying to reach their destinations, or to hide under umbrellas.
Only most - one certainly didn't mind the rain at all. In fact, Xun Jiang had stepped into it on purpose, and was now strolling through the streets and heading toward the market at a leisurely slow pace, in spite of the various beings, mortal and immortal, who were trying to get out of the rain as soon as possible.
Silly people. He really couldn't understand trying to get away from water in any way. He liked his element too much to deny himself of it for too long. The water droplets were just the slightest bit cool, and highly refreshing.
While Jin Huang would never stoop to anything as undignified as hurrying through anything as light as this rain, he didn't see the point in strolling along as though this was enjoyable. This dragon very much preferred to be dry, and indoors, thank you very much. Which was why he had a sensible black umbrella open above his head. That solved one problem, and he was en route to solving the other when he became aware of a familiar presence.
One of his brothers was also out in the rain. Jin Huang stopped, letting the other pedestrians flow around him while he tried to figure out where, exactly, this other dragon was at, as well as which one it was.
It wouldn't take long for Jin Huang to figure out exactly which one of their brothers this was - Xun Jiang stood out quite easily in the crowd, and not only because he was one of the few walking a leisurely pace. Twilight skin and long tail and wings did not go easily unnoticed.
Also, he was drenched. Nothing new here.
It was the similar feeling of brother nearby that made Ti-Lung stop, eventually turning to look in Jin Huang's direction, but not quite making him out yet.
As he continued to scan the crowd, Jin Huang finally noticed the one, rather unusual looking member of it. Ah. That had to be his brother; it was likely no one except a member of the Pantheon could manage to look quite like that.
But which one?
Easy enough to figure out, once he thought about it. The process of elimination quickly brought the name to the forefront of his mind, as well as his lips. "Xun Jiang!" he called out happily, making quick strides to bring him closer to his sibling.
He head his name called, and was finally able to find the source of the call. "Brother !" Oh, yes, yes, yes ! Jin Huang he hadn't seen at all since he had taken over, save from the remaking of the sky. But there, they had both been quite busy.
Ti Lung then proceeded to cut through the hurrying crowd, which meant a few people got smacked with wings, but in his excitement, he didn't notice. "Jin Huang ! How have you been ?"
It was certainly nice to see another of his siblings in the flesh, as it were. Jin Huang had noted the change approvingly when they'd seen each other at the ceremony, but hadn't been able to speak with the other dragon at the time. Besides, they'd both been dragons, which was to be expected, though hardly conducive for viewing the changes growth had wrought.
"I have been doing well," he replied, raising one eyebrow at the sight of his brother's wings while suppressing a slight flicker of jealousy. "Keeping busy, and all of that. Yourself?"
"I have been well, as well." Well, aside from... well, personal troubles that he saw no need to bother his brother with.
"Through... We should probably step somewhere a little more dry before you wind up drenched, hm ? The rain doesn't feel like it will ease up anytime soon." He could not tell in true certainty, of course, as he couldn't control the water in the air, but the clouds were quite telling on that regard.
He wouldn't mind staying right where he was, but he figured it would be otherwise for Jin Huang.
Jin Huang was certainly not averse to getting out of the rain, umbrella or no. "Certainly," he replied magnanimously. "Was there anywhere in particular you were bound?" The dragon arched an eyebrow. "Or were you simply out enjoying the weather?"
Despite a tendency towards acid edged sarcasm, Jin Huang managed to weight his last question with friendly teasing.
"I was only out enjoying the weather, as you have noticed." Was the amused answer Jin Huang got in return. Really, what else he was supposed to do on a day like this ? Scamper away from the rain like everyone else ? Ha !
"I will try not to shake water all over you, but I cannot promise anything." The friendly teasing was mirrored right back to sender, as Ti Lung looked around for a dryer place where the two of them could talk, hopefully undisturbed.
He shook his head in mock reproof. "Some people simply don't have the sense to come in out of the rain." He arched an eyebrow at his brother. "Although I suppose some of us don't really need to. If I was going to be fair about the matter, anyway."
Jin Huang's eyes had been busily scanning the shops around them, looking for roughly the same thing. "That is quite magnanimous of you indeed," he replied absently. "Ah! There's a tea shop ahead we could duck into." He liked tea well enough, though how Xun Jiang felt about it was another matter entirely.
A tea shop ? That sounded like a lovely idea indeed. "I certainly could enjoy a good cup or two." Especially in his brother's company. He was quick to head toward the the shop.
"Could you get us a table ? I am going to try to dry myself off some first." See, Xun Jiang had manners. Somewhat. He could only hope there were actual tables inside, and not tiny stalls. He would have such a grand time trying to squeeze those wings of his into one of those.
Oh good, another brother capable of enjoying the wonderful trappings of civilization. Jin Huang let out a small, pleased sigh.
"Of course," he said, edging ahead of Xun Jiang and casting a glance, along with a crooked smile, behind him. "An umbrella is more convenient." On the last word, he snapped his shut and headed inside, shaking it lightly to shed a modicum of the water on it.
Once inside, the dragon headed towards an unoccupied table. While he didn't have the wings his brother did, chairs were much nicer for his tail than a booth. Locating one near the back, he settled in to wait for Xun Jiang and a member of the waitstaff to notice him.
"An umbrella ? What is this strange thing you speak of ?" Xun Jiang asked, the perfect picture of fake innocence - eyebrows batting and all, through he was unable to contain his amusement as Jin Huang turned to go inside.
It was not too long before he did follow his brother inside, more or less dry save for the clothing and mane... Which were only slightly damp, anyway, so what harm could it do, really.
Oh, and thank the Twin Crown, there were tables. Still, sitting down was interesting - if the wings did not get in the way, then the tail did. It took a bit of a struggle, but finally, Xun Jiang managed.
Really. Freaking wings.
"This place is rather nice..." He had never entered it before, but it was charming in it's own way, with some definite asian influences. It was not long before one of the waitresses came, asking the two what they would like to order.
"Hmm." Really, what to try ? Illisia had not been much of a tea drinker, and really, he could not even remember if he had been... Through it would make sense that he might have. "Green tea, please."
Jin Huang watched his brother get settled with a blandly neutral expression on his face. It was, in his opinion, more amusing to present that sort of face than to smirk, or otherwise overtly show that he found the situation rather funny. Then again, he'd been accused of having an obscure sense of humor before.
"It is, isn't?" he replied, sounding pleased. He hadn't ever been inside either, but it had made a tentative place for itself on his mental list of places worth visiting in this market. He looked around with a somewhat proprietary air, as if the shop had come into existence solely for his pleasure.
Jin Huang was something of an egotist.
When the waitress arrived, it took him a moment to decide on a tea. "Oolong," he ordered finally. "So tell me, brother, what have you been up to?" He waved a hand. "I've been much involved with my own affairs, and have very little idea what's going on with anyone."
His face pulled into a frown as one wing did get caught in the back of the chair as he had moved to lean on the table slightly, which might add to Jin Huang's so far unnoticed amusement. Bloody... !!!
"I have only recently come into my own." It was more, well, public-friendly than taking over, which had not exactly been the case for him. A great part of him, what had been missing of him all along, was Illisia, and only time would truly tell how deep that actually ran. Not even Xun Jiang himself knew for certain so far. "It was not long before the restoration of the sky, actually." Which, he had to admit, had come in handy, since his influence, small and new as it might be, had been needed.
"I have been mostly tending to my own affairs myself, so far, so I fear that I have little to actually inform you of." Not all of it was good, and a lot of it was extremely confusing. The small bit of annoyance in his tone might betray to his brother that there was, indeed, some difficulties there. "There is so much that I need to... be, again." And little he actually remembered. It seemed like a maze and some days he feared that he might actually never find his way through it.