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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

One Part Mad, Three Parts Fool.


ZippoSeiCair
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  Zippo couldn’t count how many, or if any, days passed as he walked west and away from Caemlyn. He could only assume that he had at least made it a few leagues by the hole worn in the left heel of his boot. Not of the sturdiest make, they are more suitable for use around the modest manor of his father, instead of the long walk Zippo has found himself on.

  The mad laughter may have been left behind but the left corner of his mouth is pulled up in a fixed smirk. The yellow tinged blue eyes may not be quite as intense as the first day but the few travelers on the road still avoid him. It may be because of the way he carries himself and the determined set to his jaw, looking as if he could walk through a stone wall, but more than likely it is because of his unkempt and rather ruffled appearance.

  Travel stains alone cannot account for the state of his clothing. Even before he left home it was marred with food stains, minor tearing, and a threadbare hem. Now his coat is in a truly desperate state with tears along the sleeves as if he had been running through the countryside. The once white shirt beneath looks as if it may have been originally dyed a brownish-green.

  Dotted randomly through his dark hair are leaves and small twigs that help make him look quite mad without the fixed smirk or the slight yellow tinge to his eyes. The stick he carries won’t help him make friends either, especially the way he holds it, carrying it at his side as if the last thought in his mind is to use it for walking.

  Sleep wasn’t much of an option with the oddly vivid dreams plaguing him and even thought is difficult with strange, foreign, images and smells always invading his mind. Zippo has convinced himself that it is madness and may be catching, has decided it would be safer for him, and anyone he may still care about, to go on the run. To disappear sounded so simple, sounded like it would make things simpler, but obviously he hadn’t taken into account food, shelter, or even a change of clothing with a stout pair of boots.

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~ Can you smell that, Midnight? ~

 

The wolf growled. ~ How can I not? It's hideous ~

 

Winifred laughed  ~ Come now, don't be mean, Mightnigt. It's not becoming of a well respected wolf ~

 

Midnight looked up at Winifred, his eyes slowly narrowing. Winifred petted him gently. ~ Well, YOU did ask. It's not my fault the boy smells funny ~ Winifred soothed him until he finally looked away, his stare no longer holding her down. Oh, but midnight had quite the stare. She would never admit it, but he would probably win in a stare match and quite easily at that.

 

Winifred peered at the boy from afar, deciding there was never going to be a right moment to make her presence known. She took a few steps and then turned to Midnight.  ~ Stay here, Midnight ~  This was the part where Midnight usually argued against the request. He didn't like to stay behind. She used to think it was because he didn't want to part with her. She learned later on that he just enjoyed scaring the wanderers.

 

~ Oh, that's perfectly fine, Sunrise. I will certainly stay put ~ Winifred cursed under her breath and stuck her tongue out at the sneaky wolf. She emerged out of a set of thick bushes and walked towards the boy's direction. The smell isn't THAT bad. A wolf with a sense of humor. Who would have known?

 

"Well, hello!". Winifred wasn't having a good day for witty exchanges, so she didn't even try. "I am Winifred... and you are?".

 

 

 

Winifred

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Those often dull eyes gained vivid definition the moment he was addressed. His head turned just enough to see the source. That stare the travelers had found so disconcerting paled in comparison to the one he offered this woman, actually interested in something. Lips parted to show off his pearly yellows in that quite mad grin he studies the woman for a few moments.

Of course the first thing he noticed were her yellow eyes and they affirmed his supposition that the madness was catching. At first he almost believes he was the one to infect this woman; but the amount of yellow surrounding her irises quickly steers him off of that notion. The next thought to run through his fogged mind is the idea of it spreading, of an epidemic running wild through his home.

With an adjusted grip on the branch and his weight shifted back, his arm cocked back, he let all of the stored energy out in one sloppy and unpracticed motion that sent the already cracked branch for the polite woman’s temple, or as near as Zippo could have aimed.

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Winifred blocked the brench with her forearm, never shifting her stance. Before she could even speak a word, Midnight suddenly jumped out of a nearby bush and situated himself between her and the boy.

 

~ Be at ease, Midnight. He's no threat ~

 

The wolf growled  ~ There's nothing wrong in being cautious

 

Winifred nodded to herself. She was burned in the past for underestimating her foes. She wasn't going to make that mistake again any time soon. The wolf had the right of it. She kept a smile on, though. Not one of smugness or victiory, but of curiousity.

 

"So, not a big fan of guests? I hear you. A lot of times I'm not much a people person myself. But that's life for you, I suppose. Things just happen unexpectantly. I'm Winifred, by the way. And you are?".

 

 

 

Winifred

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With the branch having shattered against her forearm Zippo was already startled before the wolf leapt from a bush to situate itself between them. Instead of a scream, or even a yelp, Zippo lets out an abrupt and high-pitched laugh as he stumbled and fell on his hind end with a slight bounce. Many would have shown obvious fear of the wolf standing before him but Zippo only shook with silent fits of laughter. His eyes darted between the wolf and the woman as if not sure which was more deserving of silent hilarity.

 

Zippo spoke in a manner that seemed surprised he was actually responding to the question posed. “Zippo…” Even after offering his name the grin remained but the silent laughter grew a little less noticeable without disappearing entirely.

 

“I can end the pain, let me end the pain before it passes to others.” With his expression now set with the mad grin and intensely piercing blue eyes Zippo watched her, mad enough he seemed to forget about the wolf, or maybe dismiss it even. Either way the oddest thing may have been that his voice had a feel of pleading to it as if he were begging to be allowed to take her life.

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Winifred's lips thinned as she eyed Zippo carefully. He seemed unstable. It wouldn't be the first time it happened with wanderers, but she always worried in these instances. "I can end the pain, let me end the pain before it passes to others." Winifred titled her head to the side, curiousity taking over. The boy must be thinking that it's some sort of disease taking over him. And her.

 

"It can't pass to others, Zippo. This isn't a disease. It's not contegious. This is something we've been born with." Winifred sat down, leaving Midnight in its place, just to be on the safe side. "I didn't just happen to wander here, Zippo. I've been sent to show you the way... home. If you let me." She dusted her pants and ran her fingers through Midnight's fur. "You're not alone, Zippo. You should never forget that. And if there's anything you need clarification on, ask. I won't charge for answers, I promise."

 

 

 

Winifred

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When the words reach him Zippo let out another high pitched chirp of a laugh and pushed up onto his elbows. Zippos’ body shuddered with the silent laughter even when he attempted to get to a more comfortable position. “It’s not catching?” The question is obviously rhetorical as his eyes were down and some of the intensity in them had diminished.

As if the momentary introspection had not happened, his eyes snapped back up and regained their intensity. Most likely the word “home” had pulled him away from his momentarily peaceful thoughts. Once the word was mentioned he scrambled away from her without once picking himself up.
“I can’t go home! Not like this…” The second half of the statement was quiet almost like he was speaking to someone else, or maybe just himself. “I am alone! There’s no one there! No one! There can’t be!”

On a scale of mad ravings this may have been up there with some of the finest but Zippo couldn’t help the thoughts that bypassed his mental censor to immediately be spoken. The images and scents that came to his mind at strange hours, with a strange feel, have him thinking all sorts of nasty things.

Those blue eyes seemed to change as often as his tone, from intense to dull and glazed when he considered his own thoughts and the incomprehensible messages sent to him. For the time being he has forgotten Winifred and her companion. Dull blue eyes looked down to the road and his lips moved silently as if working through some problem in his own mind.

Edited by ZippoSeiCair
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  • 2 weeks later...

Winifred touched her lips with her thumb, lost in thought. The howling was a process. Sometimes it went smoothly. A lot of times it didn't and even within that there were different levels. It wasn't easy to sustain the change and there were certainly instants in which they were driven too close to the edge to manage to recover. It was sad, but it happened. All the Wolfkin could do was extend their hand and perhaps give the wanderers a push towards the right direction. They couldn't make them walk it. Figuratively speaking, of course. Winifred had to haul quite a few wanderers to the Stedding in the past. Only there could help be extended to the fullest.

 

Winifred didn't have a lot of time, though. She had to try and get through to Zippo or otherwise switch to the more difficult route that she wasn't keen on taking. No, she didn't want to do that unless she absolutely had to. If she could get him to come with her out of his own free will, then it would make it easier on both. Maybe he'll even grow to trust her during the journey back.

 

Winifred called Zippo's name out loud. She hesitated for a moment, but then spoke. "There might be a cure. To the condition... the... change. If you accompany me to my destination, I would have the ingredients needed to help." Winifred fought hard not to twist her mouth in distaste. She hated when the two legged implied that wolfkin were either gravely ill or working for the Dark Lord. She never could decide what was viler.

 

 

 

Winifred

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  • 2 weeks later...

The moment she had spoken Zippo's eyes snapped back up regaining their intensity. The thought of a cure would of course interest him. The thought of going back to the way things were was very enticing. To no longer smell everything, such as a bakery down the street and the chamberpot next door. The reasons to seek a cure far outnumbered the faded worries about where it came from.

 

“A cure...” Obviously not a question only a thought spoken. The grin turned to something more a few moments after she mentioned the cure. Instead of simply mad it looked almost hopeful and maybe just a little excited. As fools often will he ignored any sign he might have picked up on that she is lying since she dangled such a hope in front of his nose.

 

Once he finally picked himself up and even dusted off a bit Zippo looked to her with the somewhat hopeful eyes and stood still. Zippo didn't speak but only stood staring at her as if talking were unnecessary once his mind had been made up. Not asking her to hurry or to get on with it but only staring at her. Of course he could use a bath but the smell didn't bother him in the least and it was the last thing on his mind once the cure was mentioned.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Winifred grinned. She managed to draw his attention. With a lie, yes, but that didn't matter at that point. Zippo was too much of a mess to differentiate truth from lie at that moment. There was nothing she could say that would improve his state. This case required more knowing and professional hands. And that could only be found in the Stedding. Her job was, after all, to get him there, while trying her best to council him. However, she feared her words would fall on deaf ears.

 

"The sooner we leave the sooner we will be able to remedy the situation. Our destination is rather far. Standing here right now is just wasting daylight. So, what do you say, Zippo? Will you be my travel companion?".

 

 

 

Winifred

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Without delaying long after her words he offered a nod then only stared at her waiting for her to start off. Neither the folk that passed by or anything besides Winifred mattered to him now. All the strange images, the scents that had been coming to him may finally stop with this cure. The grin remained on his face and he had even began to fiddle with his thumbs a little. The inability to sit still only added to his overall look of madness. Folk that passed by looked at him less and less. Their inclination to avoid acknowledging his existence only grew more apparent as the seconds passed and his impatience grew.

 

Hands balled in to fists and relaxed in a slow and smooth rhythm that he seemed unaware of. “The Images, they'll go away? And the smells?” The grin could not grow any larger but if it could it may well have been from ear to ear. “I'll go with you, of course I will, just, how much will you charge me? I don't have much... I can work! I can.” Quickly he hid his hands so the lack of callouses wouldn't be readily apparent. Such a sheltered life would seem him awkward in any form of manual labor but his eagerness for the fictional cure would seem him mucking out horse stalls and cleaning chamberpots by hand should he have too.

 

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IC:

"The Images, they'll go away? And the smells?" Before Winifred could even think of how to answer that, Zippo went on. "I'll go with you, of course I will, just, how much will you charge me? I don't have much... I can work! I can." Winifred was going to respond saying she wasn't going to charge him anything, but then she thought better of it. Saying such a thing would have seemed too good to be true and might have made Zippo hesitate. No, better to maintain the lie.

 

"The fee can be discussed upon our arrival to our destination. But yes, I imagine some work could be found for you to pay your debt. Something appropriate will come up, I'm sure." Getting up from the ground, Winifred dusted her pants and gave Midnight a pet on the head.

 

"Well, we might as well get going. We're wasting daylight. Are you ready to go?". Winifred smiled, starting to walk off before letting Zippo the opportunity to answer.

 

 

OOC: Okay, Zippo, this is the part where you decide if you want us to continue RPing the journey for the heck of it.... or we could seal it up here and I'll put up a post of us arriving at the Stedding. Let me know what you prefer :)

 

 

 

 

Winifred

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