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  1. Felvere of the House Staedryn was hungry. He had never felt hunger such as this in his life. He had gone a whole day without food, nearing two now. His coat was muddy and torn, his clothes filthy and his boots were showing signs of wear. He'd have to replace them the moment he found a merchant or a tailor or cobbler capable enough to serve someone of his standing. Did he even have a standing anymore? Felevere's jaw tightened, his teeth grinding together, and he straightened his back. Of course he did. He was born noble, he would stay noble forever. It was in his blood. But...hadn't he defamed his brother? Practically stripped away his nobility? Well, Dravin was different. If he was truly noble, truly deserving of the status bestowed on him, Felvere never would have been able cast him down. If he had been...he was dead now. Felvere had killed him. A cackle rose within him and Felvere's jaw tightened further. He stamped out the cackle before it could form. He was far too dignified to cackle at the death of a family member, even one he had caused, and he had caused two of them. That was two things not to laugh at. Felvere needn't worry about ill-placed humour however. Felvere didn't laugh. Ever. The occasional smirk perhaps, but outright laughter? He sniffed, holding his handkerchief up t his nose as though guarding himself from a bad smell. That was far too common for someone of his status. What wasn't common for someone of his status-former status, a part of his mind reminded him-was to be this hungry. Once his mind had recovered, he had found no more meat arriving at his campsite at dawn, and now was at a crucial crossroad. He needed to eat. That much was obvious. That meant he had to acquire food. He could go and buy some, but for that he needed a place to buy it from, and that was nigh on impossible, especially considering his rather unbecoming lack of finances. He could steal food, but that was beneath him. Or he could beg. Felvere didn't even dignify that option with further consideration. A member of House Staedryn, begging from farmboys? He sniffed at his handkerchief again and a corner of his lip curled up distastefully. Well...what about the wolves? They had gotten him into this mess, invading his mind, his dreams. They had fed him once, broken him and helped him to heal. Perhaps they could help him again. It was mad, but honestly...Felvere glanced down at his scuffed boots. Could he get any lower? Tentatively, Felvere reached out in his mind and looked for wolves.
  2. As Jace entered the woods he began to slow down. He had been running since he left the tavern in Cairhein and it was nightfall as he entered the woods. Running might get him to the wolves faster, but thought it would be better if he went to them in a calm manner. I must be going insane. I'm actively seeking wolves. Jace thought. Regardless of his thoughts, Jace was still convinced that the answers that he was seeking would be found with the wolves. He heard a wolf howl to the moon coming from the south and continued to move in that direction. His enhanced senses helped him see in the dark and he was able to make it though the woods without tripping over roots. He could hear small night animals scurrying throughout the woods. After traveling for about an hour, a smell wafted into Jace's nostrils. Someone was coming and whoever it was, they were close and coming from behind. Jace fingered his hunting knife and turned to face whoever it was.
  3. Doha yawned as she lazily weaved a crown of wild flowers. She had traveled miles away from Fal Dara into the leafy forest for this? "Perhaps I truly am mad." she muttered as she reminisced of a time before, when she had met a wolf in this very forest. The wolf had promised her guidance. "Whatever guidance could be offered for a mad woman? I may as well fancy about marrying princes and wearing dresses with bonnets, and lace!" she exclaimed. Doha hated lace. She was feminine in certain ways, such as weaving flowers and dancing, but her other personal traits were those of the armed men in Shienar. "She even called me 'Dancer' or something. Of course I would hallucinate of being called 'Dancer'! Why not prancer, or smasher!" she threw down the crown, and flinched as some of the flowers tore. "I'm sorry, little ones." she hated hurting beautiful things as much as she hated wearing lace. She took the crown and adjusted some of the the flowers, and put the arrangement on her head. However could she go home now that she had said her goodbye's to her family and friends? She frowned. "I could actually travel I suppose, with the little coin I have.." And that's when the heard it, a twig cracking as a foot stepped upon it. Doha sprawled, reaching for her bow and arrows. She should have kept them closer! "Peace!" she exclaimed as the breath was knocked out of her. There was a shadow above her. So this was it, doomed to die at the hands of a stranger. She looked up and gasped. -----
  4. Kai woke up. Blinking sleep away, she tried to focus. It was dark, she was outside and it was raining. “Perfect,” she mumbled, and closed her eyes. Pillowing her head in her hands she tried to fall back asleep, too weary to get up and return to her hut. But she couldn't sleep. Hunger gnawed at her stomach, her throat felt raw, and the rainfall was heavy. Rolling on her back, Kai opened her mouth and stuck out her tongue. The rain was cold and tasted sweet. Hunger... Thirst... Confusion... Drink from running stream... Eat deer... Full belly... Feeling of warm sunshine on fur... The feelings and images raced through her mind, but they weren't her thoughts. Over and over, the strange thoughts came, just as they had come for days. Kai opened her eyes and looked around, desperate to find something to focus on, something real. Her hut. It wasn't that far off. She could see it, only about 200 paces away. Her eyes locked on the sight, and she stood up. Hut... Running... Kai began to hum, trying to chase the stray thoughts away, humming had worked before. She headed for the hut, trying not to stumble. Reaching the door she stopped. A wolf stood in the center of the small room. “It's not real,” Kai said, squeezing her eyes shut. “It's not really there. It's not really there. It's not really there.” When she open her eyes again, the wolf was staring back, his yellow eyes unblinking. “You're not real.” Kai took a step forward, then another towards the beast. “A real wolf would run or growl.” The wolf didn't move. Hunt rabbit... eat... You are not real.” She reached out a hand, gasping when she touched the wolf's head and felt fur beneath her fingers. The wolf wagged its tail. Kai fainted, landing in a heap on the floor. The wolf buried his nose in her hair, her armpit, smelling. The two legs was weak, had been starving herself for days. He had tried to convince her to eat, to show her that everything would be all right, that he did not want her to die. But she would not listen to him. Others were coming though. They would try. He walked to the door of the hut and lay down to wait.
  5. For the last few days the weather had been relatively mild, thank the Light, or else the simple bedroll Miles had would have done next to nothing to shield him from the elements. Still though, without a proper shelter, the icy morning dew had given him quite a few chills. After trekking mindlessly west-northwest for what seemed like ages, Miles decided finally to take a day off and give his aching muscles a much needed respite. He walked for about 2 hours or so until he found a suitable tree, with lush grass underfoot. Hanging his over-sized pack from a low-hanging branch, he rummaged through it and pulled out a book at random. This book must have been quite old, and surprisingly (for his father's collection) relatively unloved, as it's leather cover was cracked and peeling. There was no title on the cover, just the House of Delling's crest in crumbled gold. He opened the book and drowsily leafed through the first couple pages before realizing it was a collection of family journals. As he read boring stories of surprisingly good hunts, births, death's marriages, and family feuds, he slowly fell asleep. In his dream he was still reading the book when a tiny wolf pup ran into the clearing and stopped suddenly, as if surprised to see him. They exchanged glances as the pup sniffed at him from afar. All of a sudden the pup made a joyful leap into the air and seemed to skip up to him and spoke, "Two come for you, Thirdeye." Puzzled Miles responded, "Two what...and what did you call me?" "Two of you, come soon. Thirdeye, your ..." It was then that Miles was woken by his pack landing on his head as the branch it hung from snapped like tinder. The confused and no long drowsy young man shook his head, gathered his things back together, "enjoyed" a rock-hard roll and began walking again. Making his miniature camp each night had become habit at this point, and he repeated the ritual this evening under some low-hanging branches, which should offer some form of shelter for him, if not much.
  6. 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.
  7. OOC: Sorry for the delay on this. Starlight filtered through the trees in a forest south of Tar Valon, mostly diffused by the thick foliage. What was faintly revealed among the roots of a mighty oak, in what remained of the soft light, were a man and two wolves huddled close to share heat. They woke suddenly, looked at each other and stood to prepare to leave, despite it being only an hour or so past midnight. One wolf, a large white male, trotted down to the stream for a drink then returned to help remove traces of their camp by burying the remains of the small fire his campanion had used to cook last night's meal, while the other, an equally large black female with white paws and a belly full of pups took longer to leisurely drink her fill. Meanwhile, the young man was gathering the few belongings he had with him. Only twenty years old, he was the largest man in the kin, and he'd yet to meet anyone elsewhere that stood as tall or was built as large. Despite the cold Burrich, for that was the man's name, dressed in a simple pair of leggings and a loosely-tied vest. His belt held an axe at each hip and also served as his pack, holding flint and tinder, extra bowstrings, and some medicinal and cooking herbs in pockets around his waist. his vest had clips sewn into it to hold his quiver of arrows over his right shoulder and his battleaxe over his left. He put on a dark brown hooded cloak, picked up his unstrung bow that he used as a staff and surveyed his surroundings to be sure they'd left as little trace of their passage as possible. "Let's go, we've a long run ahead of us if we hope to get there before things get any worse," Burrich said to the wolves beside him. Storm Hunter nuzzled his cheek against that of his mate, Snow Paws, and ran ahead to scout the trail, leaving Burrich to keep pace with Snow. As a Guardian Burrich was in training to become a Ranger, a protector of the wolfkin. As part of that training Owen had asked him to accompany one of the Watchers to a village just outside of Tar Valon. The trip was peaceful and they'd only just parted company the day before. On his first night of the return trip he'd entered the Wolf Dream to report his progress to Owen and been met instead by Winifred. She'd shared that the wolves had passed word of a young woman going through the Howling, and having a rough time of it at that, including a recent attack from her fellow villagers. Winifred had asked him to make sure the girl was safe and bring her back with him as there were no Trackers nearby to do so. So now he and his 'brother' and 'sister' were taking a slight detour to Braem Wood, hoping to reach the girl before things with her neighbors got out of hand. He laughed to think of Snow as a sister but this trip had helped to bridge a relationship between them. Two years ago when he'd gone through the Howling himself Storm had adopted him as a little brother and gone with him to the Stedding. Until this trip Snow had tolerated his presence for Storm's sake but hardly ever spoken to him. But one week into their trip she'd gone into heat and become a mother-to-be. Amazingly enough, that had been the turning point in their relationship, and while he never expected to be as close to her as he was to Storm he truly felt that she was a sister to him in much the same way that Storm was his brother. And he was probably as anxious as either one of them to experience the births of their pups. Which is why, despite the great need, he was reluctant to run at top speed, fearful that too much exertion would not be good for her. Snow soon laughed at him and took off, calling with her mind that she knew what was best and they still had plenty of time. Near dawn they followed the directions of a local pack to find a young woman asleep in the woods. Burrich built a small fire and Storm returned a short while later with a pair of rabbits that he skinned and put on a spit to begin roasting. As they turned he rubbed in some of the herbs he brought, allowing the fragrant aroma to fill the woods. Roasted rabbit may not be the breakfast she was used to having but he'd always heard the Trackers say it was better to meet a Wanderer with food than without. So he sat on a stump with Storm and Snow cuddled together beside him, and waited for her to wake, curious how she would react to his presence but ready for anything.
  8. Windrunner ran threw the forest right on the heels of his next kill. He could sense his packmate close to him ready to make the kill, Hunter silently running keeping pace with the deer. The deer stumbled from exhaustion and Windrunner saw his opening. He sprang jaws closing around the neck for the kill... Gabe woke with a start. Shivering body covered in sweat. Memories flooded back unbidend. His mothers terrified face when she saw his eyes...eyes that should have been brown. Eyes that were golden, eyes that Gabe did not want. Gabe was an outcast, one look at his eyes and humans would throw him out. He had nowhere to go. He had nothing in way of posessions aside what he was wearing. His life was over, everything and everyone he knew... gone. The realization of this hit Gabe with such force he just collapsed crying and yelling. It took Gabe a few minutes to realize he wasnt quite alone anymore. He looked up and there was a wolf. Dark grey fur with a few white splotches here and there. Instead of feeling scared and running away for some reason Gabe felt comfortable...as if he knew this wolf. Images flooded his mind. A wolf Grey with white splotches and the images formed a name of sorts, Hunter, then Gabe saw himself.. then a wolf running in the wind and the name Windrunner came into his head. With a start gabe realized this wolf was "talking" to him. He tried asking the wolf questions, how,why,when,what but all the wolf did was stare. After awhile Hunter ,as Gabe thought of him now, gotup to leave, and in his head images came and Gabe knew Hunter wanted him to follow. Gabe followed Hunter for 3 days eating what food he could find, berries and fruits. Everyday Gabe asked Hunter where they were going and always the same reply.. follow.. No more images came to Gabe besides that. it was a silent three days unit one night Hunter stopped and images burst into his head. Wait brother. someone comes. Meet them here. and with that Hunter laid down to sleep. Gabe confused could not sleep but none the less laid down to wait for this someone whoever it was...
  9. Thelsier was hungry, which worried him. He was afraid of the things that happened when he got desperate. It had been several weeks since he had been ran out of the last town, yet he still felt like he was being followed. He always felt the presence of people that he could not see. Sometimes he would see things, images that were not from the depths of his own mind. He tried to ignore them, but sometimes found himself trying to talk back to the nothing, which made others and himself believe that he was mad. He did not altogether mind the looks that people gave him, the whispers as he passed, or the open stares. He had never felt comfortable in the cities, and didn’t think he had much in common with other men. What bothered him, is when he offered money to buy food from the inn, they denied him service, and only allowed him to stay if they didn’t have the numbers to throw him out of the town. He found himself having to steal what he needed, not having much skill in hunting, even though he felt as if he could smell animals in the woods. It had started almost a year ago, when he had tried to make his way back to Illian, beaten and bloodied. He was delirious, thinking he had seen a wolf try and lead him somewhere. He tried to tell his dad what had happened, but when he was seen talking to people that he thought were there, he was turned out of his father’s house. Spending a few days at an inn located in the south of Illian, starting to attract stares whenever he went to the common room, it wasn’t long before he was asked to leave. Having this happen to him over the next weeks at a handful of Inns sometimes being asked, sometimes forced, to leave, he decided to leave the city behind him. The months since had been spent going from town to town, staying off the roads, buying food where he was allowed, stealing it where he wasn’t. The feeling that he was surrounded by men he couldn’t see increased as he got farther from Illian. He enjoyed the time he spent in between towns, away from the stares of people. He had tried hunting several times, but when he found himself wanting to sink his teeth into the throat of the deer he was tracking, he felt more comfortable with simply stealing food from the towns. The stray images in his mind, the unknown presences that he felt, and the sometimes animalistic urges he felt, scared him. He did not know why these things were happening to him. Was it some kind of sickness, or was his mental state slowly deteriorating. Sometimes he felt as if there were two parts to him, one that he had known since his birth, and another animalistic and growing in strength. Sometimes he felt that this other part of him would gain control and he would no longer be Thelsier. Worry that this might be the case kept him up at night, causing him to be greatly fatigued. As his tiredness increased so did his worry and paranoia. He had grown bitter and distrusting. Fearing that he had little time, called for drastic action, he had feared the Aes Sedai from Tar Valon, but he no longer had a choice, they might be the ones that can cure him of this affliction. Still several days away from Tar Valon Thelsier lie curled up by a dying fire, the dying light not hindering his vision, but only draining it of color. He had not eaten in almost a week, and sleep had not graced him in longer than he could remember. He felt the presence of beings in the forest around him, but ignored the thought. He was trying to ignore the pains of his hunger when a light breeze coming from the west brought the scent of rabbit into his small camp. Standing he sniffed the air, discerning the direction his prey was from the camp, licking his chops he began to stalk off in the direction the smell, his paws making little noise on the soft grass.
  10. Myra Gailene froze as soon as she entered The Foxtail Inn where she had began her journey a couple of years ago. Something wasn't right. While the small inn looked the same, there was an overwhelming abundance of new scents that her nose had never processed before. New dishes, maybe? Master Milstead might be thinking of an exapansion if he's trying out new recipes in the kitchens she thought at she started to slowly walk into the inn. The smell started to thicken, threatening to suffocate her if she didn't step out for a breath of fresh air. What in the name of the Light was he cooking? There was a spicy aroma that came from a table to her left, a sweet smell from a table of giggling maids that looked to be on their break, and a sour smell from a table filled with half eaten food by a couple of angry old merchants. Walking up to the bar and sitting on one of the stools, Myra intended to find Master Milstead to ask what was new on the menu and if her friend Jessie was working today. However, he seemed preoccupied elsewhere and couldn't be found. It gave her some time to try to analyze the new smells. The more she tried to concentrate on one of them, the more it seemed like it came from the people than the food. Myra shook her head to rid herself of the thought. That's just absurd! Why would people smell... sour? Then she giggled. Maybe they just need a shower. The spicy aroma came from a woman trying to flirt with this man and she passed it off as perfume. No wonder the poor guy looks uncomfortable. I can smell that perfume all the way over here! Then again that person in the hat that had stared at her smelled of the forest and freedom. Freedom? How do I know what freedom smells like? A bolt of movement besides her made her give a little start. The drunken man in the stool next to her had just leaned away from her, nearly falling out of his stool, and had wide eyes in shock. No wonder those children ran away when I smiled at them. I must have more dirt on me than I thought. Then again when she had looked at her clothing, she hardly saw any dust at all. For a moment there, she had had to blink her eyes a few times as she thought she had seen each individual thread in her multitude of brightly colored skirts and scarves. She checked herself over again, and that's when she had to lean back because the man was peering intently at her face. Maybe he's just not used to seeing Tuatha'an in town. Or at all. It's a bit unnerving, though. The man then stood up and left, leaving a tip on the bar. "I musht be drunker than I thoughts," he hiccuped and mumbled almost inaudibly. Myra turned her head to look back after him. He was just turning out of sight right outside the door. "What did he mean by that, I wonder?" she said in a low tone so the person on the other side of her wouldn't hear. That's when she noticed that glint of gold coming from that person by the window again that wore a cloak with the collar turned up and a hat pulled down low. It wasn't her imagination this time. That had come from under the brim of that hat. The cloaked man was now looking at her again, as if weighing her up, and it made Myra a tad bit uncomfortable. She turned her head back, hoping that by ignoring him, he would turn away. After a couple of minutes, she ordered a glass of water from a new employee since the last time she had been here and laid a few coppers on the table to pay for it. The hairs on the back of her neck felt like they were standing up. That man was still staring at her. Turning her head to look back at him, the man casually turned his head to look out the window - and a small lock of red hair fell free from the hat. He's a... she? Curiosity took over her and she studied the woman while she wasn't looking. She wore dark green trousers that were nearly black tucked into turned-down leather boots. Under her black cloak she wore a matching dark green vest over a white linen shirt that tied up with a bit of leather string. The smoothness of her skin, the color of her hair, and her build had Myra confused. Why would she want to hide herself? If she had a body like that, she'd flaunt it at every chance she had. The woman turned her head once more and Myra quickly buried her face in her glass of water. A slight blush crept up on her face. I hope she didn't think I was just oggling her... Wait, then why does she keep staring at me? Oh Light!
  11. Rahien woke slowly from yet another dream of running with the wolves. He could feel the the wind in his fur, could almost taste the metallic tang of blood on his tongue. He woke up more fully with a start at that thought. He didn't have fur. His head flopped back to the cloak he had been using for his pillow. In the weeks since returning to his family's cottage, Rahien had slept in the kitchen by the wood stove. It was the warmest place in the house with what meager wood he could find and he had grown accustomed to sleeping in the forest and not indoors. He sat up with a sigh and pushed aside the spare cloak he had lain over him for warmth. Poking the sleeping embers with a stick, and adding more wood to the stove he got the fire revived in short order. He set about warming his hands and eating some dried meat, alternatingly washing it down with his waterskin. His last trip away from home had been a few months. Truth be told, he had lost count exactly how long as his return trips to the cottage had been brief and only to replenish supplies the forest surrounding their home could not provide. He stared into the flames... through the flames, and they danced in his eyes as he thought about why his parents had left their home. Pain had driven him away from home, away from his family. He suspected that it was pain that had forced his parents to leave the Cottage. He was angry with them for leaving, angry with himself for staying away so long, angry at the Creator for allowing his siblings to perish. Amidst the anger a familiar image brushed his mind. He had been confused at first by the images that entered his mind. Most of the time they seemed disjointed and jumbled. There were times they made a sort of sense however and one image, group of images really, he had come to recognize every time. The she-wolf stepped into the doorway and looked at him with the golden eyes that mirrored his own. Snow wasn't exactly the image he got from her, it was more than that. It was fresh fallen snow at the breaking of dawn. When the light first broke over the horizon, the moment of illumination. The smell of the Winter wind, The purest white of the unbroken snow. It was all these things and more. She had been the one in the clearing that day, she had been the one to comfort him when he returned to the cottage to find his family gone, and in a way she was like a sister. He could not explain exactly how. Rising to his feet he met her at the door. He knew she would not come into the building as it made her uneasy. She licked his hand and turned to go. Trotting a few steps she glanced back, tongue lolling. Again images flooded his mind and he shook his head. "Not today Snow." With a final look she trotted back into the trees. The images had scared him at first, He had thought he was losing his mind. He still was not entirely sure that he wasn't, but had accepted the fact that sometimes he knew what Snow wanted. For instance that she checked on him every morning, and every time wanted him to leave the cottage and return to the forest with her. He got images from other wolves too. But none so common or familiar as Snow. As he turned back into the home, he caught sight of a piece of wood his father had been working. Picking it up he felt the anger surfacing again. Why hadn't he done something to protect his family? Why didn't he try to understand his pain? All he ever did was tell him it would be ok, that the Wheel wove as the Wheel willed. Tears filled his eyes and he dashed them away angrily. Picking up the ladder back chair he hurled it explosively against the far wall with an anguished cry. Images flooded his mind, almost drowning out his anger someone was coming. Snow felt happy about it although he was not quite sure how he knew that. Just then a figure stepped into the doorway.
  12. It had been a good day for Toram Rashevar. An investment he had made had finally started paying off, and during the celebration party that evening in the Dancing Flagon he had found the dice were bringing him luck as well. His pouch was jungling with a combination of earnings and winnings, and he had even been fortunate enough to find a merchant willing to swap his silver marks for good Andoran gold, allowing him to keep his purse thin enough to be safely tucked out of view. It had been a good day as the dice rolled well for him once again, earning him enough money to pay for the round of drinks he had just ordered, leaning back in his chair, exhausted from the excitement of the day's events. He was rich now, could buy that house he had his eyes set on after selling his own. Marisa would like having more space, and he felt the kids would as well, they seemed to grow taller every day now. He felt the wine getting to more places in his body than just his head and stood up to leave for a minute. Some fresh air would do him good too. It had been a good day, but it is the will of the Wheel that all things must one day come to an end. As Toram relieved himself in a more secluded alley next to the Inn, he never saw nor expected the figure standing on the rooftops behind him, believing himself safe within Fal Sion's walls like so many others. He never heard nor expected the whistle of cloth through air as the figure jumped down from the roof. And he never felt nor expected the dagger that was driven far into his neck from the impact of the stranger's landing almost on top of him. Those outside would hear a thud from the alley, as if someone had just tripped over some loose boards, or a box of junk. Most would think nothing of it, though there would be some that for an instant would believe a person was being robbed before sinking back into the false sense of security Fal Sion's walls gave them. And there were those with heightened senses, whose ears would recognise the snapping of a neck hidden by the stumble. Those few would see a woman in a poorly fitting suit of leather armor holding the limp body of a man close to her. Those with sharp eyesight would also notice the woman wrenching and slicing the man's neck as if to open the wound further, despite it being clear from the wound that the man was already dead. And, to their horror, those watching the gruesome spectacle would see the woman put her mouth over said wound after pulling her dagger out, blade glistering darkly with blood in the torchlight during the brief second it was visible until deft hands hid it in its concealed sheath at her side again. Daciana Mordecai The hunt begins!
  13. Cluching his head John stumbled thoug the brush of a small stand of trees, it was night time though it seemed like noon to him with the moon's light shining on this almost cloudless night. The voices were getting stronger, they had layed almost dorment in the back of his mind for about a month, always there but slowly getting quieter...that was untill today. Tripping on the brance of one of the stunted trees that grew in the boarderlands he almost landed on his face, instead catching himself on anohter of the tree's brnaches, for that brife secound he let his concitration slip. Imageise flooded his head, the smell of a freashly killed deer almost whiped out all other smells, voices, or words put to the pictures, started to talk to him, to find out who he was. "No, go away!" John shouted at the ground, he tried despratly to fight the voices back into submision, to almost no avail. Looking to up at the moon, his amber eyes shining in the near darkness, he cursed who ever had given him this condition. The day had gone from bad to worse for him, it had started like any other, meaning that he woke up in a servents room were he had been hidden when he had first manifested the symptoms of his "Condition", he had gone downstairs to find that the house was empty, looking out the window to see the town guard comming had only told him that his parents had finnaly decided he was no longer in the creator's grace. He had run untill darkness had enveloped the world in its dark grasp, and now found himself on the ground cursing everyone he ever knew. All these thoughts took about a few secounds to flash though his mind, and when they stopped the voices had quieted down some what. "Good" he thought, for some reasion thinking on what this condition did to him always quieted the voices, as if they were takeing pitty on him. "I dont need your pitty," he said to a tree brance, "It is bad enough that you have cost me my home, now you think to make it right by giving me your pitty?" The sound of footsteps woke him out of his ranting at the tree brance. Looking around he could not stop the persion, but he could hear him. Winterwinds-Only slightly used sanity
  14. ooc this start in the andoran forests but end in the steading so figured this was a happy medium placewise also continues from here http://forums.dragonmount.com/index.php/topic,26245.msg713575.html#msg713575 IC: Branches and twigs where flying above her, others where scraping against her as she charged through the dark forest on horseback. All care for her stallions feet had been left behind as she panic striken had set out on this wild trip to escape whichever monsters the forest hid. Her companion gone to who knew where, maybe the animals had taken her. Images of horror realed through her mind as she thougth up all types of nigthmares of what had happened to Dilora, she also thougth she could hear something chasing them. Mayhaps it was only the wind in the leaves, but she was sure she could hear something breathing, maybe it was just her heart, but she thougth she could hear soft thumps against the leafy floor of the forestground. She shivered imagining sharp tooths sinking into her legs and drag her off her horse, trying to look back under her arm, her heart racing quicker and quicker. She had no clue where she was when dawn emerged and she thumbled out on a plain in the midle of the forest, her horse was shivering and froting under her as he stoped in the center. Causiously she sliped down, she hugged him and poured water into her cup, nothing in sight, it was all quiet before one by one forest birds took up singing. As the horse slowly calmed she checked his legs and then sunk down in a bundle on the ground, shivering and silently tears started runing down her cheecks. If she had had a mirror she wouldnt have recognised herself, large red pouty eyes, her hair a big knot full of leaf and twigs, her clothes covered in dirt kicked up by the horse, and her clothes riped as well as her skin from the twigs whiping against her. Her stumock growled but she had no food, and she was so tired, but all she could do was let her eyes panic stricken search around for monsters even in high daylight.
  15. The small boat glided softly over the coarse river soil. With a quick jerk it came to rest and its occupants shared a hesitant look. The sun had long set; twilight cast its pulses of pink and purple through the sparse trees and over the subtle hills. A town perhaps a mile down stream glowed with evening life. But the two meant to keep quiet and unnoticed. “How long will you be?” The old man croaked, his coarse hand laying the oar in his lap so he might scratch his wiry beard. “No more than two days. Lynx won’t enjoy being cooped up for much longer than that, nor will I like too much longer in Murandy.” “Don’t want your head on a pike in Lugard, eh? Well you have another day’s trek before you’re even out of Altara anyway boy. And Jaeb can look after your horse plenty fine ‘til you find what you’re looking for.” Erik turned to look back at the old man. Erik knew except for his golden eyes and the hazy outline of his head and shoulders, the old man would not be able to distinguish a facial feature in this waning light. He could tell where the fleas had bitten on the old man’s bald head and see the beginning of eye-mist in his dull cow eyes. Erik knew no herbal cures for it, but he did want to repay the family for their help over the years. A rest station for any brother or sister out of the Stedding was a welcome and rare thing, and Erik had known of the Standish stop since he first became a Tracker. He never asked why they helped, and they never said why. Good enough reason for him to let the question sleep. “I’ll make good time so long as Jaeb is keeping a watch along the river for us and not you, old man.” A laugh croaked out him, his hand slapping the paddle side of the oar, “Aye, he will. Tomorrow night he’ll come across and spend the night and day here. Don’t know how much help the fool boy will be around the rest of place since he lost his thumb.” “Accident?” “Altaran combat training,” he said with gravel and weight in his throat. The awkwardness of the silence pushed Erik from the boat. With a final nod he pushed the small craft back into the waters and it slipped from the shore almost silent. Night was pressing in as the stars burned through the cloud cast. With a quick check of his surrounding Erik dropped the small satchel behind a log, the bits of twigs and cloth dangling out, and he pushed a sweep of sand over top. Just in case they were early… Or very very late. “Let’s go with being early… for once…” Erik shrugged his pack over one shoulder and his baldric over the other. He was making good time, despite the fact the signal was at first hazy a few days past and grown in intensity that day. He’d been along Garen’s Wall, setting up an outpost in the small Stedding he’d found there the last winter, when he felt it. It was a female, he was certain of it, with eyes that shift and shiver and she moves like quicksilver. He hoped he would be able to get through Murandy and its many river divisions to the Wanderer in time. Erik settled into a steady pace as he climbed the small hills. He ached for the cover of trees, safe and sheltered away from eyes, but all he could see were small growths in couple pace wide bunches. The beacon pulled him onward to Midea. The Kin had no eyes and ears in there, a town famous for its people’s tempers and their pride for being short-tempered. Not a bramble patch I’d like to stumble into if I can avoid it. He opened himself to the wolves, felt their hearts and thoughts beat inside him and flood their names and locations through him. Hold on Sister. Erik
  16. Valynt woke with a start the morning after leaving Chachin. He was in a thicket and looking around in growing alarm until he saw the wolves. Reaching for his knife he paused as images flashed through his mind. They were of the day before as he rushed blindly away from the hunters and guards of Chachin. Then everything came back to him and he sat there rocking back and forth while he tried not to cry. He had lost everything, the last of his family, the girl of his dreams and a home! Then he vaguely remembered that the wolves had helped him escape. They had watched over him as he ran and showed him this place so he could hide. He was somewhere on the Eastern edge of the Black Hills near the Northernmost river head. Gathering himself and fighting an internal war against being hateful to those who had turned on him, he turned his attention towards the wolves and when one that looked stronger then the rest approached he bowed his head. Images flashed in his mind as he spoke but he didn't know what it meant, only that they came from him. He spoke aloud but softly to the wolf, " Thank you very much for helping me! I am forever in your debt, and I don't know if you can understand me but you have only to call and I will come to your aid." That said he crawled out of the thicket. Making his way to the river he drank and refilled a wineskin with water. Then he turned South and staying in the Black Hills, started walking. He had no idea where to go or what to do. He only knew his eyes were yellow and that most would never accept him in a city again. Not that he had ever really been a city boy anyway, but alone in the land was not what he wanted in life either. So he walked with no clear goal in mind and anger lurking deep in his heart. Valynt "Silverstreak" Nororama, Wolfkin Pup
  17. Author Message WhiteWolf Joined: 16 Feb 2006 Location: UK Posted: Wed Jun 27, 2007 9:26 am Post subject: Start Something Attn Cham -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Owen had never been in Murandy before so before he left the Stedding he sought out those of the Wolfkin who had travelled there before, questioning them on the lay of the land and what he could expect from the inhabitants It was the usual tale of prejudice and hatred, but there were isolated areas where a more enlightened attitude existed. This enlightened attitude did only meant the inhabitants were more likely to turn a blind eye to a person with bold eyes rather than report them to the authorities. Owen had been riding for nearly two weeks, pushing both himself and his horse to the limit. It was not a short journey to find this new Wanderer, and as a precaution Owen had taken along a spare mount. He did this for two reasons, one he could switch mounts and thus maintain a greater speed, and the second reason was that he did not know if the Wanderer had a horse. It would take far longer for them to return to the Stedding if one of them were on foot, it would also make dodging any pursuers much harder. Many a time when Owen had been asked to find a Wanderer the Wanderer was running for their life from an enraged mob, or just family members who thought the change in their eyes was a sign of the Dark One. Owen slowed his pace, letting his horse get his wind back, if a horse was ridden hard and not allowed time to let it’s muscles and breathing return to normal it could suffer an injury and in the wilds that would mean only one result. When he was satisfied his current mount had recovered, Owen dismounted and started to remove a couple of bags from the other horse. When he had these secure on the first horse, Owen mounted the second and set off again. As he rode he pulled a lump of cheese, wrapped in grease proof paper, from a bag at his waist, he cut a piece off before replacing the rest in the bag. When he was finished with the cheese Owen took a drink from one of his two water skins and then fished around in the same bag for the hunk of bread he had there. That was his meal, he did not want to spend time building a camp and preparing something hot, there would be time for that later. Owen The WhiteWolf Ranger Leader OOC Cham, Owen will not find you until my next post, so in your post just bring us up to date on what you are doing IC,ok? _________________ "So let it be written So let it be done I'm sent here by the chosen one So let it be written So let it be done To kill the first born pharaoh son I'm creeping death" Back to top Doselan Joined: 15 Jun 2007 Location: Alabama Posted: Wed Jun 27, 2007 1:24 pm Post subject: -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The morning was cool, dew had settled across the ground in the night to form a thin blanket of moisture. Cham was down on all fours slowly putting one foot in front of the other, trying to stay as low to the ground as possible and be careful of the short stick he had in one hand that was sharpened to a fine point. It had been almost a week since his father had disowned him, and even the thought of it still brought him a deep pain, like a weight bearing down on his chest. But the pain that he felt this very moment had nothing to do with that. The pain he was now feeling was the pain of deep hunger, he had not been able to eat anything besides certain leaves and flower petals since he had been here; and those seemed to have less appeal than they used to. Normally under such circumstances he would have hunted with his bow, or set up rabbit snares but when he was banished from the farm, he had not stopped to get anything. He had simply run as fast as he could, hoping he could outrun what he was becoming; a shadowspawn. So he was left with no choice. His father had always said, “When you have nowhere else to turn and nothing left to do, just do.” So, ignoring the sudden heavy sadness that settled upon him, that is just what he did. He had been creeping like this for more than twenty minutes starting at the forests edge and moving out into this small clearing, trying to get as close as possible to his future breakfast, a small doe. She had been grazing on the bushy grasses that grew in the clearing when he first caught her scent from a hundred or so paces away. He now used every bit of stealth he could muster to get close enough to take her down and it was sheer luck that she had not yet looked in his direction. He was now close enough to hear the deer’s slow, steady breaths taken between bites. Just another few paces and he would be able to leap toward the animal. Slowly he let his left hand land on the ground with no sound and began shifting his front weight onto it, feeling a twig that was buried under the grass begin pressing into his palm. When he had enough weight applied to the hand, he lifted his foot and repeated the process until his foot was well in place. And continuing the slow process, he lifted his right hand and began to place it ahead of him when all of a sudden the twig beneath his left gave way and snapped. The noise was not very loud, however it was enough to send the doe’s head into the air quickly to look around, eyes as wide and round as they would go. Seeing him crouched on all fours less than two paces away, the animal leaped into the air and upon landing, bolted into the woods. As soon as the deer had moved, Cham was on his feet in pursuit entering the forest right behind her. He could feel the rush of excitement as the wind blew past his face and the ground seemed to come up to his feet in mutual agreement. Every step was sure and every sense was working at what seemed to be the height of their potential. He was giving this chase his all, dodging around trees, jumping over the large stones that were littered across the forest floor. After what seemed hours of running, Cham felt his body grow tired. If I am to do anything, it must be now. Awkwardly, he pulled the sharpened stick back behind him and with all the strength he could muster, he sent it spinning towards his prey. Cham watched in despair as it struck the animal blunt side first, and bounced off onto the forest floor, which seemed to remind her that someone was giving chase. Suddenly, she almost doubled her speed. Cham tried for a few seconds to pursue, but before he had time to think, the animal was thirty or so paces ahead of him. Cham slowed to a stop and watched his breakfast run out of sight. Anger seemed to envelope him and he knelt down and picked up a stone that was nearly as big as his fist. “You bloody, milk drinking sheep kisser!” he yelled after the deer, throwing the stone in her direction. The stone barely flew anywhere before it struck a tree and tumbled to the ground. He stood for a few seconds before he realized just how out of breath he was. Suddenly feeling very weary, he sank to his knees, and began sucking air into his lungs. Once he had his wind back, he struggled back to his feet and began walking back the way he had come, scanning the ground for his sharpened stick. His hunger pains seemed to have doubled and were now accompanied by a sense of hopelessness that he had never experienced before. Not even on the night that… Once again, his chest felt heavy with sadness at the thought and he let out a long sigh. A moment later, he laid eyes on his stick. He picked it up and examined it to find that it was undamaged as far as he could tell. He took the small stub of a weapon and walked over to a large stone that looked comfortable, and took a seat. What was he to do? He couldn’t go anywhere that people could see him. They would surely know him for shadowspawn the first time they saw his eyes; but if he stayed out here, he would surely die. It might be better for the world that way. The thought distressed him, and seemed to spark anger within him, a spark added to the blaze that was already there. Still sitting he reared back and threw the stick once more. He was about to drop his head onto his hands when he heard a deep, thud. Finding the source of the noise, he stared incredulously at the short length of sharpened stick stuck firmly into the trunk of a nearby tree. The sudden laugh that erupted from Cham’s throat had no mirth in it. _________________ Last edited by Doselan on Fri Jun 29, 2007 8:32 am; edited 2 times in total Back to top WhiteWolf Joined: 16 Feb 2006 Location: UK Posted: Thu Jun 28, 2007 9:35 am Post subject: -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The light rain that was falling did not help to improve Owen’s mood, that and the mist made navigating a real problem and Owen had to concentrate fully on using all of his enhanced senses to guide his horse through the mist. After what seemed like days, the mist started to lessen as a breeze started to blow leaving tendrils of mist across Owen’s path. The drizzle, however, continued, Owen was thankful for the heavy cloak he wore he kept the majority of him dry, but could not stop him feeling damp. As the afternoon wore on the rain eased and the sun finally made an appearance from behind the clouds, which were now scurrying away to the south. Owen flung back the hood of his cloak and let the late afternoon sunlight bathed his pale, almost luminescent, skin. He shook his head, several times, to work the knots out of his long silvery hair. Owen was an albino and the lack of skin pigmentation combined with his golden eyes made him a fearsome sight to those who did not know him and to some who did. Looking around at the countryside, Owen tried to spy any landmarks that would tell him if he was getting close to where the Wolves had told him the Wanderer was. Owen remembered them describing a large forest that was bordered by a range of hills to the south, and a road to the far north edge of the forest. Owen had crossed that road the night before last and had been steadily moving southwards, now it was time to turn east and enter the forest itself. Owen stood very still, straining his senses to their maximum, he had heard something from up ahead, laughter of all things it seemed. Moving in the direction of the laughter, Owen made every effort to keep himself concealed, he did not know who had made the laughter and did not want to walk into something he could not walk out of. A young man sat on the ground, gazing at something Owen could not see, but it seemed whatever it was it was the source of his amusement. Just then the young man turned his head in Owen’s direction and Owen saw the sunlight gleaming on the young man’s golden eyes. So this is who I am here to meet, I hope this laughter is a good sign and not one that he has gone mad. Stepping out from behind the tree Owen kept his hands away from his body, palms facing the man across from him. “Hello there, my name is Owen, or as the Wolves call me, White Fang. I mean you know harm and only wish to help you. I have been asked to come and find you and explain a few things to you. Can I join you?” Owen The WhiteWolf Ranger Leader OOC: Cham, Owen has left his horses away from where you are, after your next post he will go and retrieve them. _________________ "So let it be written So let it be done I'm sent here by the chosen one So let it be written So let it be done To kill the first born pharaoh son I'm creeping death" Back to top Doselan Joined: 15 Jun 2007 Location: Alabama Posted: Thu Jun 28, 2007 11:16 am Post subject: -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Cham laughed so hard that he fell from the stone he was sitting on and resumed his seat on the leafy ground. He did not understand his laughing, he was neither happy nor amused; he was enraged. But he could not stop this sound from erupting out of him. Am I going bloody mad? The thought scared him greatly. What if he was losing his mind to the shadow? His laughter only grew more uproarious. Suddenly the wind brought him a strange smell and he quickly fell completely silent, spinning his head to look in the direction of the smell. His breath caught in his throat as he saw, standing before him, what could only be a shadowspawn. The tall man-like figure stood there with his pale skin almost glowing in the sunlight and his silver hair that came down below his shoulders seemed to come alive as the light wind lifted and swirled it around; but what was worst of all were the golden eyes that stared out of his pale face, seeming to glow brighter than the rest of him. Cham started as the stranger began to speak in what seemed to be a normal enough voice, if deeper than his own. The stranger said something of wolves but Cham could not make himself hear what was being said, nor could he look away from those golden eyes. One thought was dominant in his mind. The shadow has come for me. Cham leaped to his feet and ran over to the tree, retrieving his sharpened stick. The stranger made a step toward him and he turned to face the man, if man it was indeed, and pointed the sharpened stick in his direction. “Keep away, shadowspawn. I know that they have sent you for me, but I will not become a child of the Shadow! Now leave me be!” He shouted the last words in rage before turning and darting away. Once again he felt the wind rush past him as he ran full speed, but this time the excitement was not there, this time there was only anger and fear. His ears caught the sound of footsteps in the leaves behind him and he glanced back quickly to find that the shadowspawn was following him. “Leave me be!” he shouted over his shoulder without breaking stride, but it kept coming at him and he knew he would soon be caught. Cham quickly veered off to the left and kept running at full speed. The shadowspawn kept pace easily and was not thrown off-kilter one bit. Cham began formulating a plan in his mind. Having grown up in the area, he knew the layout of this forest and knew that somewhere near-by, there was a twenty pace drop off that lead down into the river. He quickly changed his direction so that he would be heading there. He and his friends had grown up daring each other to jump off of the small bluff and into the river. He had come to find out which places were shallow and which were deep, a thing that could not be determined easily from looking at the surface of the water. He was hoping that he would be able to hit one of the deep spots and the shadowspawn would hit a shallow, either breaking it’s leg or worse. After a few minutes, he began to feel a slight weariness and was sure that he could not run much farther. Suddenly he saw the bluff come into view and quickly grew intensely focused. The distance shrank steadily, sixty paces, fifty, forty, thirty; then suddenly, less than ten paces ahead of him, a large grey wolf stepped out from behind some undergrowth and blocked his path as a myriad of pictures flooded into his mind. Shocked, Cham tried to stop and change directions at the same time, and ended up tripping over his own feet. He tumbled to the ground rolled towards the large animal and stopped with his face just inches from it’s snout. He quickly stumbled back and held himself up with his hands. The wolf was like a statue, standing firm in the middle of this forest with a sort of majestic grace that only kings could manage. His legs were each firmly planted on the leafy ground, and his head was held high, and he had peace and unbreakable resolve painted on a face that held the same mystic golden eyes that Cham had recently acquired. It was the most amazing thing he had ever seen. Cham stuttered to himself as his mind tried to form the pictures into words. He saw a huge open meadow with a sky that was covered in dark gray colored clouds. The clouds seemed to swirl while sitting still, to move with grace while standing firm as a rock. Cloudy Sky. Suddenly he saw another image of a creature with only two legs running which then came to a sudden stop and stayed where it was. Before his mind could put pictures to the words he felt a hand descend onto his shoulder and provide a firm grasp that felt oddly comforting. _________________ Back to top WhiteWolf Joined: 16 Feb 2006 Location: UK Posted: Sat Jun 30, 2007 9:04 am Post subject: -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Here we go again, another bloody Wanderer who runs at the first sight of me. If it did not happen with such monotonous regularity, Owen would have smiled at the situation he found himself in. Running through a forest, tracking his quarry, was something that Owen had spent a lot of years doing, and no young cub was going to escape him, even in unfamiliar surroundings. Owen followed Cham, not hurrying nor tarrying, keeping to a pre determined pace that ate up the ground and not his energy and stamina. Owen used his enhanced senses to keep track of Cham, it was not difficult as the young man had no idea how to shield his emotions and that meant Owen could sense almost everything Cham was feeling. Because of this Owen knew Cham was planning something, his scent had changed from frightened to what Owen could only class as scheming. Just then a presence entered his mind and spoke to Owen. Owen introduced himself and as best as he could explained why he was there, thankfully the Wolf knew of White Fang and sent Owen a vision of a female Wolf carrying a cub in her mouth away from a stream. Owen thanked the Wolf and slowed his pace knowing now that Cham would not be able to run much further. Owen found Cham standing stock still in the middle of the trail, his attention totally focused on the large Grey Wolf that stood before him. Owen sensed a feeling of awe that was followed by gratitude? Owen was not sure, but he was glad that the chase had ended sooner rather than later and that neither of them were hurt. Gently he placed his hand on Cham’s shoulder and turned him around to face Owen. “Your friend there would prefer it if you did not go running heedlessly through the forest again, and so would I, it would be a shame to have come all this way only to return alone. As I said before, my name is Owen; I am here to help you and will do everything within my power to see you safe from harm. You may choose to sit and talk with me, or you may leave, but if you choose to leave now you will never know the truth about yourself and will forever be pursued by claims that you are Shadowspawn, something that neither of us are. If we were our friend here would tear us both apart and not think twice about it.” Cham stood there, obviously trying to digest everything Owen had just told him, it was a lot to take in and there was even more to come that would be equally hard for Cham to comprehend. “The choice is yours, my friend, you can sit with me and talk, then leave, you can leave now, or we can talk and you can return home with me to be with others of our kind.” Owen backed away from Cham and went and sat down with his back to a large Ash tree, he wanted Cham to fully understand that he was not being forced here, the choice really was his, and his alone. Owen The WhiteWolf Ranger Leader _________________ "So let it be written So let it be done I'm sent here by the chosen one So let it be written So let it be done To kill the first born pharaoh son I'm creeping death"
  18. OOC: Yay Surreality. I am bottled, fizzy water, and you are shaking me up You are a fingernail, running down the chalkboard I thought I left in third grade Now my only, consolation, is that this could not last forever Even though you're singing and thinking How well you've got it made Who are you? When will you be through? Just a Phase - Incubus As Ransom wandered away from the small village several days North-east of Aringill he found himself at a loss. He couldn't remember what the name of that village had been for the life of him. The only thing he remembered was that he had been thrown out of that tavern and was now headed into a forest. Looking around him, he couldn't really remember why he was headed into the for... Come brother. You're always welcome here. The voice in his head - more a bundle of emotions really - startled him at first. But he remembered that it wasn't the first time he had felt something like it. In fact, it had more than a faint resemblance to his dreams of late. It was that familiarity that drove him onward. The voice felt like fam... We are family. Shrugging off his surprise at the voice responding to his unfinished thought; Ransom looked up at the moon and wondered how this strange voice - these strange voices - could feel more like family than the man who had raised him. His eyes on the sky, he didn't see the root that reached up from the darkness to entwine his feet. The next thing Ransom knew, he was tasting blood and dirt. Pushing himself up slowly, he found himself staring into two brightly shining golden eyes. He leaned forward in an attempt to see what sort of creature could carry such stunning eyes... and suddenly found himself falling forward. - Can someone really fall forward? - The eyes came closer and closer toward him until Ransom had no choice but to think that the creature meant him harm. Then, as suddenly as it began, the rushing of the creature stopped, the eyes were no more, and he found himself being plunged head first into a puddle of water that could stand to be deeper. Ransom began to piece together the brief attack and realized that, judging by the mud covering his front and the tracks now gracing the short cliff before him, he had been atop that hill a moment before looking down towards the pudd... Which meant that the eyes he had seen moments before were.... Placing his hands on either side of his head, he thrust upwards into a handstand and let his weight pull his feet forwards onto the ground. As soon as he felt solid - well, mostly solid - ground beneath him he dropped to his knees and examined his reflection in the rippling water. The face staring back at him was familiar, but the eyes were not. His eyes had always been brown, not... golden. He stared into the water trying to puzzle out where these strange new eyes had come from. Had his old eyes gotten angry and left? It made no sense to Ransom, and so he sat in the water, trying to understand the change. It wasn't until the cold of the water began to sink through his clothes and into him that he remembered he was sitting in a puddle. Standing, he attempted to brush some of the water off of himself, but to little avail. Stepping from the puddle he looked around where he stood, wondering where he was. The forest. - I know that. Where am I going? - To us. - Who are you? - We are your brothers and sisters. Come to us brother. With that, Ransom began trudging off again, ignoring the cold that settled into his bones. ***** It was nearly dawn when he finally decided to make camp with what little supplies he had. Plopping down where he stood, he pulled out his flint and tinder and made a feeble attempt at a fire. After a few moments he gave up on that and pulled a strip of dried meat from his cloak. Wrapping it around him he lay his head on the most comfortable rock he could find and tried not to dwell on all that he did not have. - Family... friends... a home... - A smile drifted over his face as sleep claimed him. At least there he had the puppies. Ransom Terrin The not so Gleeful Gleeman
  19. WhiteWolf Joined: 16 Feb 2006 Location: UK Posted: Wed Jun 27, 2007 5:44 pm Post subject: Make a Move: Attn Rhya -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- It had taken them well into the night to answer all of Keyl’s questions and that combined with the lack of sleep either Aleeza or Owen had had in the past few days made the decision to spend the night where they were easier. Owen had cooked the evening meal using the supplies they had brought with them. Keyl seemed more at ease after the meal, and so Owen proposed an early night and an early start the next morning. But the best-laid plans of men always go astray when dealing with imponderables, and that was how it was this night. No sooner had Owen closed his eyes than he was contacted by a small pack of Wolves, they were tracking a Wanderer on the fringes of a large wood. Because they had contacted him in the Dream, Owen was able to get a good idea of the location of the Wanderer. ”WhiteWolf gives his thanks Wind over the Water. May your pack grow strong and live long.” Owen did not actually speak, all communication with the Wolves was done using images and the Wolfkin had to interpret these images to understand what message it was that the Wolves were sending them. Even for the more experienced members of the Wolfkin, talking with the Wolves could often be a battle. Thankfully this night Owen was able to easily understand what he was being shown. Waking from the short sleep he had had, Owen quickly gathered his gear, and then placed his saddle on his horse before strapping his gear to the horse. When all his preparations were complete, Owen quietly woke Aleeza and with her still clearing the sleep from her blurry eyes Owen recanted his Dream. “Is this not unusual Owen? First our being sent to find Keyl, and now this?” “If I live to be a hundred years old Aleeza I doubt I will ever fully understand the minds of the Wolves, even Ice is a mystery to me at times. But we will have to leave discussions of this nature to a latter date, I must be off. You know how to get yourself home, make sure you stay out of sight and travel as safely as you can. I will do my best to catch you up, but do not tarry for me, not unless you have no other choice. Find me in the Dream if your need is urgent and I will do all I can to find you.” With that Owen mounted his horse and slowly rode off into the darkness, his pale skin shining with the glow of the moon when it broke through the trees, his golden eyes burning with a passion born of many years of responsibility to the his brothers ands sisters of the Wolfkin. Owen The WhiteWolf Ranger Leader OOC: Rhy, in your response bring us up to date with what has happened to your character so far. Some thoughts on the changes you are going through etc and then Owen will find you in his next post. _________________ Taymist Joined: 23 May 2006 Location: Scotland Posted: Sat Jun 30, 2007 4:03 am Post subject: -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Rhya was still. Still as she could be given that all of her limbs felt like jelly. How far and how fast she had run was a mystery to her but it had been far and fast enough. She listened intently, all of her senses on alert, eyes scanning what she could make out of her surroundings in the grey half light of dawn. Nothing. Silence. She slid thankfully down the tree trunk beside her and allowed her head to droop. She wasn’t certain when the pursuers had picked up her trail. A few days past at least. Not long after she’d left that last caravan. They’d been hard to shake in spite of her efforts at doubling back and looping around them during the night. Finally though, it seemed the three had been left behind for the moment. Rhya sighed softly as she got her breath back. She needed to eat but couldn’t rouse herself to move and open her pack. Instead, she unstoppered her flask and drank greedily of the fresh, cool water. One thing about woods, there was usually water to be found. Taking a last swallow, she lay the flask beside her and looked again at the area she was in. Not far from the edge of the woods by the looks of things, she mused as she spied open fields through the gnarled trunks of the old oak trees. Where she sat was merely a small, open patch of mossy ground, not large enough to be a clearing but plenty big enough for a few people and with space for a fire. Not that lighting a fire was a risk she was prepared to take for now. Leaning back against the trunk, her mind turned again to the question that had bothered her most over the days since leaving home. Where would she go? She barely knew where she was, although if her sense of direction was right, Caemlyn lay not far off. Should she head for her mother’s family in Tear? Rhya laughed mirthlessly. She’d get no welcome there. The looks she’d had from the traders had taught her that if nothing else. Some were speculative, some wary and all were unpleasant. No, not Tear. Dredging up some last bit of energy, she pulled her pack over and rummaged for some cheese and bread, silently thanking her father again as she did so for seeing that she was well provisioned. Her fingers curled around a lump of cheese and as she sat back once more to eat, she speculated on the wolves. She had gradually come to accept that she was not going mad. She no longer saw the same wolf as in Saldaea. In fact, the wolves changed regularly over the weeks she’d been on the road, leading her to believe the contact changed as pack territories changed. Not that she knew much about wolf habits but what little she knew from books suggested this was the case. The contact was always in the form of a dream and hazy at best, going as quickly as it came, leaving only vague impressions. The latest dream had been more solid though. Rhya knew this wolf had been close by and sensed, somehow, that it knew of her pursuers, knew she was lost. Shaking her head, she smiled sardonically at her own fancies and repacked the last of the cheese. Her fingers brushed the edges of a small object as she did so. A box that contained a small necklace given to her by her father before she left. “This was your grandmother’s”, he had said, looking more tired than she had ever seen him before. “You look like her.” Rhya battled the feeling of desolation that swept over her. She missed her father, the home she’d grown up in, her friends. Why had this happened to her? Was she truly a darkfriend? She didn’t think she was evil. Were there really others like her? She remembered the uncle her father had mentioned. What had happened to him? So many questions. And she was out of answers... Loneliness, exhaustion and heartache swept through her and before she had time for rational thought, her head tilted and she howled. Long and high. Pitched at the moon waning on the horizon. As the sound died, Rhya slumped, spent, against the tree, lashes sweeping her pale cheeks. Her final conscious thought was that if her pursuers found her now, so be it... _________________ WhiteWolf Joined: 16 Feb 2006 Location: UK Posted: Sat Jun 30, 2007 5:55 pm Post subject: -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The howl of anguish cut through the night and Owen realised he was near now; soon the confrontation would begin between Wolfkin and Wanderer. One in full control of his abilities, the other just coming to terms with the sudden changes to their senses, never mind the dreams. Owen remembered how confusing those early forays in the Wolf Dream were. Owen waited until the sound died away, turning his head one way then the other as If trying to discern the direction the howl cam from. He knew it was a human voice that had uttered that howl, no one who heard it could mistake it for a Wolf and Owen hoped that he was the only to hear it, if there were two-legs about then trouble would not be far away. Owen coaxed his horse off to his right, using a small animal trail that went roughly in the direction he wanted to go. Soon though, he was forced to dismount and lead his horse to avoid the low hanging branches that almost turned the trail into a tunnel. Soon he emerged from the trees into a small clearing, one created by two fallen trees. Over to one side a figure was slumped on the ground, her hair obscuring her face and Owen thought he could hear quiet, almost desperate sobs, The feelings of loneliness and desperation coming from her were almost too over powering and Owen had to fight to control the sudden influx of these emotions. Calming himself, Owen dropped the reins of his horse, knowing that he would not go far as he had been well trained by Owen. Slowly, not wanting to startle the girl, although he knew as soon as he removed his hood that his albinoism would more than likely do that. “Please do not run, I am here to help you. My name is Owen and I know what you are going through, it happened to me as well some time ago.” Keeping his voice soft, Owen continued talking, almost as if they were having a conversation, hoping to put the young girl at ease. “I come from a place to the west of here. A Wolf who told me about you and asked that I come and help you contacted me. So here I am.” The last was said with an ironic sound to Owen’s voice, once he removed his hood he doubted his words would be remembered. “Please do not run, I really am here to help you and if you will let me I will see to it that no harm comes to you. All I want is to sit and talk with you for a while, to explain some things to you that will help you face the challenges before you.” With that Owen carefully sat down and then slowly removed his hood, revealing pale skin and silvery hair. “Do not let my appearance trouble you, I have always looked this way and it has nothing to do with what you are experiencing right now. Come; sit with me for a while. Ask the questions I know you are burning to ask, I will try and provide all the answers I can.” Rhya did not move, she had raised her head when Owen had first started to speak, but that had been the only sign she had given that he was there. Now he hoped her curiosity would get the better of her and over rule her first impulse, which must be to run. Owen The WhiteWolf Ranger Leader
  20. The storm came hard and fast, swooping down on the unsuspecting Tracker and her companion with a fury that had Janna wondering if she’d offended the Creator in some way. Within moments her clothes were soaking, plastered against her like a second skin and she could barely see a few feet in front of her, despite her acute eyesight. Though harsh the rain was warm and to Janna’s surprise Silver was not afraid. The poor pup had an intense fear of storms, mostly the thunder, Silver would quiver and shake, press tightly against Janna and welcome soft strokes and comfort. But this storm was free of the dark rumblings and the flashes of lightning that followed. It actually felt…..welcoming. A warm balm, strong but safe. Wild but something to be trusted. Almost there Chime, just ahead….just…. The cub jumped against Janna, leaving muddy footprints on Janna’s trousers before she danced a bit further down the trail. Silver was ecstatic at having discovered a new Wanderer on her own, perhaps that’s why the storm did not frighten the young wolf. The Head Tracker watched with a smile as the cub sprinted ahead, her coat turned a light grey by the rain (not to mention the mud and the Creator knew what else she insisted on investigating and then rolling in). Janna shuddered to think what the wolf would smell like when she cuddled close later in the evening. Not that she minded. In fact, Silver had gone a long way to mending Janna’s broken heart over the loss of her beloved Wind. She snorted to think what the old wolf would say to being called beloved. He’d make a scathing remark about two-legs and the silly thing they called love….he’d brush it off with a sneeze and a superior stare. Sniffling a bit Janna reached out for Silver, felt her not far ahead and retreated. But the pup had felt her need, as she always did. Bounding back she ran at Janna full speed, head low and golden eyes intent, stopping only at the last moment to gracefully brace her front paws against the Tracker knees. Windracer would say he loves you, Chime. As I do. Janna dropped to her knees and cuddled Silver close, wet wolf smell and all. They sat frozen like that for several moments, until Silver’s slight wiggling shook the Tracker out of the past. They’re over the next hill, Chime! And he wants to play! If wolves could laugh out loud Silver did then, with a sharp bark as she bounded away, heart full of joy as she searched out her new Wanderer. Janna Telenvar Twisted Chime Head Tracker ~ Wolfsister Companion to Silver OOC: Janna is in her mid twenties, black hair worn in a tight braid (before she became a tracker she wove silver bells into her hair – hence the name). Her right arm is crippled, stunted since birth and she generally keeps it tucked tightly against her. Carries a crossbow specially made for her and a heavy pack. Silver is her new companion, a white pup, very young and enthusiastic – feel free to npc both as you need. ;) Welcome to the Wolfkin!
  21. Janna tossed restlessly in her bedroll, sending blankets asunder and crying softly in her sleep. Beside her Silver whined anxiously, tilting her head and watching her human companion grapple with the demons of the past. Dawn was still hours away and the young pup had a fair idea of what the Tracker dreamt. Chime would awaken bleary eyed and somber, memories of Wind a tangle. Two legged’s are so silly, the cub settled her head between her paws, golden eyes intent on Chime as she struggled. They know only today, cub. They live in the moment. Silver’s ears perked and she raised her head slowly. Beside her Windracer sat grooming himself, delicately licking his paws, and though transparent he exuded an unearthly glow. The cub pounced at him, startled when she tumbled on the ground without making any contact. The old wolf laughed and turned toward Chime, Aren’t you supposed to be guarding her? Silver regained her feet with as much dignity as she could muster, It’s so boring! The wolf cub huffed, She so much more fun when she’s awake. Windracer growled low in his throat and Silver hunched low, apologetic. She’s vulnerable when she sleeps, cub…you must protect her. For me. The old gray wolf approached Janna slowly, Silver a few steps behind. They both regarded the human with varying degrees of affection as she tossed and turned. Finally Wind bent low and nuzzled her neck. The Tracker sighed and relaxed suddenly, all the angst and tension gone, her sleep true and healing. Windracer gave her a last affectionate lick then turned to the cub, his golden eyes stern and intense. You must watch over her carefully, little one. Silver ducked her head, I will. It would be easier if you revealed yourself in the Dream. She won’t listen! The older wolf laughed again. Not yet…..and I have work for you. The cubs ears perked up once more and she listened and the image of the two legged became clear in her mind. They set out the next morning, Janna clear headed and well rested, the cub nearly falling over herself in her excitement. And you should see the way she catches rabbits! The silly things don’t stand a chance just **zing** and their caught! Janna let the cub chatter on as she considered how best to approach this new Wanderer. Silver said she was only just beginning the Howling…perhaps a straightforward meeting? Or should she wait for the newly made Wolfkin to approach her? The straightforward approach proved futile, the young woman was stealthy and avoided them at every turn. Finally Janna struck camp and let Silver do the looking, in the Dream. Hopefully their newest Sister would approach them. Janna Telenvar Twisted Chime Head Tracker ~ Wolfsister Companion to Silver OOC: Janna is in her mid twenties, black hair worn in a tight braid (before she became a tracker she wove silver bells into her hair – hence the name). Her right arm is crippled, stunted since birth and she generally keeps it tucked tightly against her. Carries a crossbow specially made for her and a heavy pack. Silver is her new companion, a white pup, very young and enthusiastic – feel free to npc both as you need. Welcome to the Wolfkin!
  22. As the sun went down, Dautry bleakly surveyed his surroundings. There was no one in sight, except for Red of course. And a couple of wolves. Also, of course. The panicked fervor of his initial escape had long since been replaced by growing fatigue and an ever-present dull ache. He knew now that he would never see his father again. Most likely, Lord Byron's lackeys had made sure of that, one way or another. Dautry reflexively wiped his eyes for tears, but they no longer came. That well had dried up days ago, filled with an emptiness so deep that he doubted he would ever cry again. He had made his escape to the east, toward the Plains of Maredo, figuring it would be harder for anyone to sneak up on him in the open, and Red would be able to outrun everyone else. For the most part, his plan had worked flawlessly, if not easily. He hadn't seen another human in days. He just hadn't expected the wolves. They were always there. On the edge of his vision, in his dreams. It was like they were watching out for him, but that was impossible. Surprisingly he hadn't had to struggle to find food so far, because it seemed a rabbit here and there stumbled into his path just when he decided to start looking for one. It could have been coincidence. It could have been, except for the fact that a wolf was always standing there watching until he noticed him after taking down the rabbit with his bow. He almost would have preferred going hungry. Almost. The sizzling, savory rabbit smelled delicious, but thinking of how he had come by the meal always made it taste like ashes. So he tried not to think about it. He hadn't gone hungry, but he hadn't slept well in days. His dreams of late had been consumed with running, but not the fun sprints and long runs he could remember since he was little. He was running in fear, terrified of something unseen but heard in the distance. Dogs barking and men shouting. Lord Byron's men. Those dreams had wakened him several times, but they were just normal nightmares born of his situation. He could live with those if he had to. It was the others that woke him soaked in sweat, the dreams of running with the wolves, that convinced him he was losing his mind. In those dreams he wasn't running away from the men and dogs, but towards them, teeth bared in the hunt. The wind whistling in his face felt rapturous as the ground flew under his feet. The wolves ran beside him, urging him to run even faster. It felt real. It felt too real. And it scared him to death. Sitting alone in the dark, his fire long since gone out, Dautry dreaded closing his eyes. But he couldn't stay awake, not again, so he checked to make sure he was alone. His only company on the empty, rolling grasslands was Red and the wolves, and as sleep stole over him, he knew they would come close again. He felt them watching, waiting for him to sleep. They found him in his dreams.
  23. It was cold. Sohvi supposed that made sense, because it was cold out, and she was… well… out. Had been out ever since her father, or at least the man who had raised her tossed her out of his home and called her a demon. As if it was her fault that she had crazy dreams and that her eyes had changed from almost black to something a lot more yellow. Sohvi was convinced that a lot of kids her age went through changes like that. She sat by a little pond, staring at her own reflection. Her eyes, mostly. They were so strange, it was hard to get used to them. Other things had changed too. She’d noticed that when she came near a village at some point. Oh, the smells. The horrid smells. She had never realised that humans stank all that badly. There had been a sense of mirth somewhere in the back of her head, which told her that someone thought that was very funny. That disturbed her too, because she’d never had things like that in her head before. She fled from that presence as well as the village. It was a lot harder to get rid of the presence though. It was around her, all around her. Sometimes nearby, sometimes farther away, but always questioning. Sometimes they went away for a while, when she thought of a certain image. The snow, and the reflection of a person on that snow, in the sun. It was hard to describe, and yet when she pulled that imagine into her mind, the prodding sensation went away, only to be replaced with other images. She saw one of a young wolf, staring at the sky. When she looked up at the sky with him, she saw thousands and thousands of stars. “Eyes High.†She’d muttered when the image faded. There was a sensation of amusement again, as well as a bit of pride, as if she’d done something right for the first time in her life. She was thrilled with that sensation, for as long as it lasted. The truth was, Sohvi was getting more than a little worried. She’d taken very little with her when she ran. In truth, nothing more than the dress and the shoes she was wearing. It hadn’t even been her favourite dress. It was dark blue, and while it fit her well enough, it was definitely not her favourite cut or colour. She liked Taraboner dresses, or even the ones from Mayene, which her mother had always said were scandalous. They made a person look beautiful though. Well, some persons at least. Sohvi was pretty sure she was a lot cause, with her straight hair and her full lips, and her lack of broad hips and apple cheeks. She picked her cheeks again as she stared into the pond, trying to get some colour into them. Ah, she could hear Rita now. Her youngest sister, no more than eight months older than her, complaining about how she could never take Sohvi anywhere, because Sohvi was too ugly. And then there was Runa, her second to youngest sister, who had said there wasn’t a bonnet deep enough to hide her horrible face. In a way Sohvi was glad to be rid of them. At least now no one would call her ugly again. But it also meant she was without a family, and without a home. And it was getting cold, and the coat she took from the washing line was far too big and not really warm either. All in all, Sohvi realised that things were looking down for her. A single tear slid down her cheek as she yearned for the time when her mother had still loved her, and when she didn’t have voices in her head. ~Sohvi Darwin Shimmer
  24. It had been a week since the wolves had started following him. Feeding the roaring blaze before him, even Anton Averdal's frantic industry couldn't hide the fact that he was bone tired. After parting ways with certain woman and taking to the road by himself in Tarabon, he'd begun to notice that he wasn't alone. Wolves, wherever he went they followed and had done so for over a week now. That in itself was not cause for the trouble which Anton felt, his time in the Wolfkin Stedding had given him a chance to learn more about the wolves, and he knew he they wouldn't attack him. No, that wasn't what had led him to a small ravine in the hills north of Elmora. If he were simply prey that would be far easier. Dark clouds rolling over windswept plains. Wincing as he staggered forward back a step, Anton shook his head as if it would rid himself of what plagued him. They were touching his mind, whenever he thought he was alone they did it. Or he was going mad, he wasn't sure anymore. He would find himself thinking thoughts that were not his, feeling emotions that were someone else's. With it always came the presence, he knew it was the wolves that followed him. With his eyes opened in the Stedding so long ago it was impossible not to acknowledge what was happening. That knowledge was proving little comfort though, not with the wolves sifting through his mind, picking out his thoughts and his memories at seeming random. With them putting their thoughts in his head, their feelings, their being it wa- Warmth running down jaws, last quiver as prey passes on, scrabbling on moss and lichen to water pool, wind whistling and leaves rustling amongst great oaks. Collapsing to his knees as he clutched his head, a groan escaped him as he fought the surge of images and emotions that bombarded him. Mind racing with foreign thoughts, Anton clawed onto his sense of self as best he could, as if he were holding onto a log that was being swept down a mighty river. Sweat poured from his face and his forehead was furrowed with strain even as he attempted to weather the worst of it. Paws that have known; snow, grass, sand, rock, stone, river and salt waters from many different ranges. Farpaw. Anton howled. Anton Averdal Howling
  25. AURIN It was time again; the wolves had found another young one going through the howling. Eyota packed his usual belongings, his pack, daggers, quarter staff, power wrought dagger, and bow. After strapping everything he would need to himself he threw his green travel cloak over his shoulders and moved out of his cave to travel the route that would best take him to Saldea. It had been a long time since he had journeyed that far north; and to his shame actually had to consult the giant map in the tracker classroom. Randon had accompanied him the entire way; communicating with the local packs as they moved to make sure that they knew where the wanderer was. So far she seemed to be in good health but every minute they took getting ot her was another moment that the howling could consume her. Every night Eyota checked in with Janna to relate his progress. His control of the dream was coming back; he was able to control his surroundings and move to where he needed to go again. It was nice to see her in the dream and have someone other than Randon as company. Janna had been his big sister since she had first found him near to insane, and then again after he had nearly burned down half the stedding. It had taken two weeks of hard travel but he was near her now. The wolves had shown him that she had a companion to help her along the way. And it appeared for once that the wanderer would come to him. He had yet to make camp and the sun was shinning through the branches of the forest. He was just getting ready to step out from behind the tree to make camp when a young girl suddenly bumped directly into him. And feel flat on her back. Eyota reached a hand out down the help her up; “I’m sorry my lady, I didn’t see you running through the forest.†As she looked up into his eyes fear began to radiate through her scent; it was so thick he almost felt he could cut it with a knife. “You don’t have to be afraid. I’m here to help you.†OOC: Alright react how you would like. Have fun with it; and enjoy. We’ll basically be just getting to know each other. And I’ll be helping you understand what you’ve become. ODETTE The forest floor was cold, and lumpy. Roots from the trees had spread out quite far from the trees themselves and were overgrown, peeking out above the surface at random on the ground. A few of those roots were uncomfortably digging into Odette's backside as she lay there on the ground staring up at the noontime sky through a filter of leaves and branches. Worlds collide when you run head on into someone. Odette's thoughts were a jumble, incoherent and confusing. One second she was staring in front of her, the next, she was looking at the sky. One second her feet were moving, then they weren't. At first there was air in her chest. Now, it was knocked out of her and it was taking a good deal of her effort to calm herself down to let her breath catch up with her. Like a cloud blown in front of the sun, a shadow drew over Odette. When she looked up, she could make out the shape of a man with his back to the warming sun and a hand stretched out towards her. A voice accompanied the silhouette, "I'm sorry my lady, I didn't see you running through the forest." Slowly Odette's eyes grew accustomed to the shaded light and she started to make out the features of the man standing above her. At first glance the man seemed as stereotypical as all the other woodsmen and travelers she had seen while working in her father's Inn. But her impression changed when she managed a good stare into the man's eyes. Twin pools of golden yellow fire burning hotter than any fire found a a blacksmith's forge. "You don't have to be afraid. I'm here to help you." The man added, but his words skipped past Odette's ears as every single bedtime story and years worth of tall tales and exaggerated escapades from the Inn's patrons came exploding into her mind. Trollocs, Fades, Darkhounds, human like creatures that soar through the nights sky and steal your soul with a kiss, and even more shadow cursed monstrosities that she couldn't put a name to all made appearances in her mind. For the light of the Creator, she thought she would have been safe traveling south. Odette wanted to scream. She would have were it not that she still needed to catch her breath. As it was she just managed to gasp for air a few times as she started to crawl backwards away from the man. With her heels digging into the soft earth and her hands clawing at the ground under her Odette began dragging her body along the ground, almost too petrified to get up and run. Gradually the ground beneath her changed from the soft earth to the harder root laden ground at the base of a tree. Odette could make out the figure of the man better now, he wasn't alone. To his left and his right were wolves. The smaller one on the left was the one she was chasing just minutes ago. She had thought it looked playful, now she saw it with different eyes. She could see the feral nature of the animal now. She was being backed into a corner, cornered like the game in a hunt. The beat of her heart quickened, loud and fast, pounding like the drum in a Gleeman's song of battle. Her breath had finally returned and she was breathing in heavy pants. The need to scream had subsided, and was replaced by the disconcerting urge to growl. The urge came from down deep inside, a near animalistic instinctual need to growl. With her back flatly against the trunk of a wide tree Odette barred her clenched teeth and a low growl escaped from her mouth. It felt natural and although guttural, it seemed to encompass all the emotions she wanted to convey better than any words could have. OOC: <-- I don't know what this stands for, but I'm guessing, it's someway for me to talk to you outside of the RP. Anyway, I hope that was ok, I was having fun. AURIN OOC: you got it; it stands for Out Of Character. Which is a way we can communicate as it says…out of character. So now sorry for the wait. IC: This was going from bad to worse; and quickly. The howling was showing some of it’s more menacing traits. It was obvious she felt like a cornered animal and he would have to break through to her somehow. It had been his eyes; as soon as she saw them she went feral. She hadn’t had a chance to see her own apparently; this could be harder. “Easy, calm down. I’m not here to hurt you.†Eyota was glad now that his weapons were all well hidden. “I’m a friend and I’m here to help. I know my eye’s are yellow. But please listen to me; your’s are as well.†He took a deep breath a stepped a little closer to the snarling young girl in front of him. “Look into your heart, find the things you love, the things that make you human. Hold onto those bring the images to the surface. Think of the face of your father.†The snarl grew louder…apparently her father was not a good subject. “Ok that’s not so good, think of your life the things you love anything. You have to hold onto those things.†Slowly her face dropped the snarl as she began to relax, and her face became more human. “Good that’s good. My name is Eyota, I am here to help you. I know you’ve been feeling changes been wanting to roam free. If you think back your sense of smell has probably grown more acute. You might even be craving more meat than usual. Think back and remember.†The change was continuing and she was becoming more and more human. She was regaining her hold on life; the howling was losing. Now she just seemed scared. The forrest was growing darker and Eyota hadn’t found a place for them to camp yet. He didn’t relish spending the night without fire or shelter. “Alright, I’m going to find a place for us to camp. If you would like to learn more please come to the camp; I will feed you and we can talk.†It was a gamble to leave her here, but with the fear that she was feeling towards him it was wiser to let her come to him. The shadows were shifting as the sun moved lower on it’s course through the sky. It only took him a few minutes to find a suitable place and get a fire going strong. All he could do now was wait for the young girl to come to him, he prayed she would or else finding her again in the morning would be tricky if not impossible. OOC: Your posts are great I love the length and detail! Just keep going with this and we’ll get you to the stedding pronto! ODETTE t had been hours since the man, Eyota as he called himself, had left her. Odette had made her way back to the road, back to the place where she had dropped all her supplies and personal belongings. She was alone again, without even the wolf for companionship. That was one of many ill-formed and complex reasons why she decided to go back and looked for Eyota's camp. The sun had dipped well below the horizon and not even a trace of it's golden light remained in the forest. Instead, the watery silver light from a wanning moon, five times more brilliant than any night before, filled the forest with its eerie nocturnal glow. Finding Eyota's campsite proved far easier than she would have thought, considering her limited experience with the outdoors. The sickly sweet smell of smoke from freshly cut pine was being blown in her direction from the southwest. Just underneath the hoots of owls and the droning of Saldaean cicadas Odette could hear the distinctive cracking sound as the fresh sap expanded and snapped in the distant fire. And if that wasn't enough, the amber aura of the fire itself could be seen glowing faintly behind the darker silhouettes of the trees. Odette pressed forward toward Eyota's site, taking caution only to avoid tripping over the overgrown roots jutting out of the ground. Even in the deafening calls of the cicadas Eyota must have heard her approach. At present his campsite was a small clearing amidst a copse of Saldaean spruce. Their thick low branches buffeting against the sharp northern wind that would soon pick up now that the temperature had dropped a few degrees. Odette stood just at the edge of the clearing, still partially hidden behind the trees. Her body angled so that her side and a sliver of her back were facing the growing fire. Her face was tilted down and sideways, and the fire was just close enough to cast dancing shadows on her high cheek bone. Eyota had probably heard her coming but she called out anyway. "My name is Odette Rachma." She was avoiding eye contact with the man, but from the corner of her vision she could see the broad smile of relief spread across his face. He started to get up from his seat adjacent the fire. The movement caught her off guard, she gasped in a breath of air as all her muscles tensed. Again, like before, she felt an animalistic impulse, this time it was to take flight. Odette had to steel her will to keep her body from acting. Her reaction didn't go unnoticed by Eyota who was slowly taking is seat back down. "How did you know?" Odette called out again. Odette couldn't see his reaction, but the few seconds that it took him to compose an answer seemed to drag on for eternity. The sound of the small fire, amplified by the silence crackled as loud as a bonfire at Beltane. "About your eyes? About yours senses? Is that what you mean?" "No no. Not that." Odette answered as she side stepped a few more paces deeper into the clearing, letting the nettles from a spruce scrape gently across her skin and rake through the tail in her hair. "You're wrong about that." That was a lie and somehow she knew it, but it's easy to lie to others when you were lying to yourself as well. "How did you know what to say..." Odette took the last few paces and made her way fully into the clearing. Still not looking directly at him she continued, stammering a little. "I wasn't myself back there. How did you know what to say to calm me down?" AURIN The fresh pine burning in the fire gave off a pleasant enough smell, permeating the clearing with it’s crispness. The campsite wasn’t perfect, but it provided at least a modicum of comfort from the sharp wind that was sure to pick up now that the moon had risen to bath the clearing in it’s fresh light. Eyota loved the night, the insicts the buzzed and the stillness of everything else around him. Finding peace was easier in the night, it calmed and excited his feral nature if that was even possible. It had been several hours since he had left the young girl, but his instincts still screamed at him that he needed to let her come back to him. She was still lying to herself and until she came to terms with what had happened to her they wouldn’t be able to move along the path to recovery or acceptance at the least. He could still remember when he was Aurin, before he had lost his hold on what was his humanity. Even now thinking back on the changes that had occurred in his life he had to fight to hold onto the humanity Janna had allowed him to grasp. Her scent came to him before the sounds of snapping twigs. Relief flooded through him, it was affirming to know that his instincts had led him in the correct direction. Still it would be better to show caution, she was still very likely close to the edge. Out of the corner of his eye he could see that she had edged close to the campsite; still not willing to come fully into the light and warmth of the fire. When he began to rise her scent instantly became alert and tense, close to the edge again. He paused and slowly returned to his seat, he still needed to let her come to him apparently. It was good to know her name however. It would make things easier to communicate with her. Now it was time for the questions; "How did you know?". It took Eyota a minute to figure out what she might be asking. He had two guesses and decided to go with what was least likely to be what she meant; give her a minute to adjust. "About your eyes? About yours senses? Is that what you mean?" "No no. Not that." The answer came quickly, but she stepped farther into the clearing, which was a good sign. "You're wrong about that." She was still obviously lying to herself but she came further into the clearing, still avoiding looking directly at him. They were making progress. "How did you know what to say..." Finally she came fully into the clearing…good very good. Even though she avoided looking at him, he looked fully in her direction willing her to look at him. "I wasn't myself back there. How did you know what to say to calm me down?" And now they came to it; what Eyota felt was the real question she had wanted to ask since she had decided to come back. “That Miss Odette Rachma, is a little bit longer of a story. One which I will tell you only if you will sit by the fire with me, and share some of this stew I’ve cooked for us.†It was a gamble, but she was already in the clearing and obviously hadn’t eaten today. He could hear her stomach rumbling from where he sat, and she wanted an answer. It took a long time but she finally sat and Eyota handed her the plate of stew. For a moment she stared wordlessly at the plate; her stomach finally winning out she began to eat. It was good to see and he couldn’t help but smile. The northern wind was picking up now and Eyota threw a few more pine limbs on the fire the fresh snap popping in the still night air once again filling the clearing with that wonderful fresh pine scent. “You’re experiencing something called the howling. It is an old tale, the wheel turns and ages come again. The wolves vaguely remember a time when men ran with them. Though they can’t tell us how long it has been. All wolves share memory, and even the memory of running with men is but a shadow of a shadow of a memory. But the wheel has turned again, and now we run with them. They are our friends and companions; we can communicate with them through images and pictures. And some of their trates seem to have rubbed off on us for lack of a better term. Your senses; sight, smell, hearing, have all increased. And on the flip side, the feral nature of a wolf is also inside of you and that’s what happened today.†Eyota paused to breath and realized Odette had finished her stew. Taking her plate back he topped it off again with another load of stew and handed it back to her before finishing his tale. “I was married once, a year or so back my wife went to try to visit her family and was killed. I embraced my wolf side fully, becoming like a wolf. It was only Janna, our head tracker, who could bring me back. She spoke to me much as I did to you, reminding me of the things that make us human, love, anger, hate, joy, sadness. Only by fully remembering and embracing those things can we still hold to our humanity. I won’t lie to you, it is a dangerous thing, and hard at times. But there are more of us, we live in a community in an abandoned Ogier stedding. There we can teach you to control your new gifts, to hold tightly to the things that make you human; and more importantly give you a family that will understand.†The next part would by far be the trickest to explain; but she seemed to be at least listening even if her scent said she was still trying to deny it. “The reason having this new family is important is because many fear what they do not understand, and even though you haven’t seen it yet, your eyes are yellow like mine. It is another side affect from the howling. But please belive me when I tell you this; you are not a dark friend you haven’t been touched by the dark one, if you had the wolves wouldn’t let you be. Wolves are aligned with the light, and by association so are we. Hear my words, see my eyes, and listen to your heart. What I’m telling you is truth no matter how hard to believe. I hope you have heard what I have to say and taken it to heart.†It was well past mid night now, the long days of traveling and the tense confrontation of earlier in the day were obviously wearing on them both. But they still had a long night ahead of them; he was sure that she would have questions, but she was still here with him and that was a good sign. Now it was time to wait again, to see if she had taken to heart what he had told her. Eventually she would break and would she would come to him, only this time she would come with words and questions. OOC: Ok take it where you will, ask questions run away again, whatever you feel is needed or you want to do! PM or ICQ me if you have any questions. ODETTE Odette truly hadn't prepared well for her journey, what she thought was rations for a week had only lasted the first two days. She didn't even bother tastingthe stew Eyota had prepared, just the prospect of warm food had turned her stomach savage. She was near finished her second helping and she would have asked for thirds were she dauntless enough to ask. The tale Eyota was weaving was heart wrenching to say the least. His face belied none of his true emotions, just a man telling a story disconnected from his life. Yet somehow, by some preternatural means, Odette could sense the cavernous abyss that existed behind Eyota's dialogue. It was identical to chasm inside of her. He had lost a wife, his partner, his soul mate, the true kindred spirit that was walk by his side holding his hand for all eternity. Odette had lost her parents, first her mother to illness, then her father to a far worse disease - hopelessness. The situations were far from similar, but the desolate nothingness was the same. Odette knew he wasn't lying. The man fully believed every word he was saying. There were moments when Odette found herself wishing that this family of people, people like him, existed. It was like the tales of Jain Farstrider and the lands of Shara. They couldn't be true, but they were so fantastical and they solved all of the troubles a person could have, it was hard not to wish it existed. Eyota was trying to pull her into his delusions, she couldn't let that happen. There were moments this very day where she had questioned her own sanity. Now that she had come face to face to a man who had stepped over the line of reason and sensibility it was easy to stay grounded and level headed. She knew she needed to get out of here. By the time the stew had all been devoured the fire it had been warming on was reduced to a few smoldering black coals with streaks of red cracks that were radiating the final remnants of the fire's heat. Spring nights in Saldaea were just as harsh as the dead of winter in some of the softer lands to the south. With the now diminishing fire a pall of cold mist was starting to encroach on the clearing. A shiver rippled down Odette's back as she inched closer to the smoldering coals. "The fire will die long before the morning comes. I'm afraid I'm going to have to get some more branches to keep us warm for the night." Eyota said reluctantly as he rose from his seat opposite Odette. He glanced around the clearing, frowning to himself as he looked at the absence of firewood. "I'll be back in just a few minutes. I promise." Odette's resolve was steadfast. She was going to take flight as soon as she was sure Eyota was gone long enough. Just enough time to give her enough of a headstart and to make it frustrating for anyone to follow. She watched Eyota leave the clearing and disapear into the curtain of branches and shadows. 60.. 59.. 58.. 57.. 56.. One minute, Odette thought as she started counting backwards, ought to be enough time for Eyota to stray far enough away. 44.. 43.. 42.. 41.. 40.. 39.. As quietly as she could, Odette took hold of the small bag that held the final remaining links to her old life, to the life that she so desperately wanted to go back to. To the life that would fill the deep chasm inside of her. To the life that she could never return to. 33.. 32.. 31.. Her heart was pounding in her chest nearly three times for every second that ticked away in her head. 21.. 20.. 19.. The knuckles on her right hand were starting to turn white as she clenched her bag tightly at her side. 14.. 13.. 12.. Odette glanced carefully around the clearing, looking for the largest break in trees for her to slip through. 8.. 7.. 6.. Her legs were tightly coiled springs ready to vault forward at her beckon. 4.. 3.. A rustling of branches came from across the clearing to the north. Eyota stepped through with an armload of dry pine. Odette's head snapped around to face him, the golden sheen of her eyes glinting dimly in the light from the near dead fire. She let out a vicious snarl before springing forward and crashing throuhg a slender opening between the trees to the south. A stride for beat of her heart. Odette hardly noticed the branches as they whipped her body, tearing at her clothing and parts of her exposed skin as she impetuously ran through them. Nor did she notice the biting cold that she had been immune to just minutes ago. Each panting breath she expelled was a plue of white mist that parted and skitted across her cheeks as she made her dash through the night. There were no thougts of where she was going. There were no thoughts of her family. There were barely thoughts of Eyota, who was, most likely, chasing after her at this very moment. There was only the need to run. AURIN Eyota could smell the indecision, disbelief, and fear rolling off of Odette. He had expected it and feared it. He had brought in many wanderers in the past few years but none had been so close to being consumed by the howling as this young one. He didn’t think it was caused by the overwhelming call of the wild that most felt as much as it was by the emotional turmoil that rolled just beneath the surface of her mental state. Her mind was turning to the only shelter it could find from the confusion, the hardened feral nature of the wolf. He was torn on whether or not to go after her; he had done everything he could to ease her mind and explain what was happening. He’d even debated slipping a sleeping drought into her stew, but ultimately decided that wouldn’t bode well for garnering her trust. Eyota reached out to Randon and opened his mind to the images that would flood through them. Randon had been moving through the shadows next to Odette since she first took flight. Eyota had known before he even stepped back into the clearing that she was close to running; but that couldn’t change his direction. It was up to her what she would now do. She would run until she was exhausted, Randon trailing her silently and Eyota following in the wake she was sure to leave through the forrest. The night had come and gone and Odette had finally collapsed in a fit of exhaustion; Randon was keeping watch over her with Tail Chaser near by as well. The pack leader of the area Falling Leaves had also agreed to help in bringing the two leg to her senses. Ever since the initiation with Moon Hunter and the trackers, and becoming a fourleg in the eyes of the wolf nation Eyota had found even more cooperation with the packs that he often traveled with. Now she was only a few minutes ahead with her back curled agains a boulder. Eyota moved quickly and silently through the trees and bounded onto the boulder over look the exhausted girl. He pulled out some of his dried venison wrapped in some leaves and an extra water skin and tossed down by her side. Her eyes were open and alert immediately and she stared up at him; still with a slight feral expression and snarl on her lips. “What for one second†Eyota pushed a scent through that he knew she would understand even in this state, the scent of the Alpha Male, the leader of the pack. She had no choice but to stay where she was for now. “I’ve told you only truth, and have done nothing but try to help you. Understand that until you understand completely what has happened to you you’re not safe here, or at your home. People fear what they do not understand. Come with me where you will be safe and we can help you to learn. I can’t and won’t force you, but I know even in this state you can feel the danger that your mind is in, if not your physical body. I’m going now, Randon will stay with you, if you choose to come he will lead you to me and keep you safe until we are united.†Eyota slipped off the boulder as Randon stepped from behind the trees and laid down to wait with the young girl. He knew in the end she would come, and sometimes with someone so stubborn you just had to give them what they wanted for them to see that what they wanted wasn’t what they needed. He only traveled until midday before setting up camp and waiting for what he knew would happen. She had come to him before and she would come to him again. All he wanted was for her to believe that she had to make the decision. Once it was made there would be no going back, but she had to be the one to decide if she wanted to come or not. OOC: You don’t have to come to Eyota if you don’t want to. If you decide not to he’ll eventually come back for you. I jjustr though this would give you the opportunity to do what you wanted to do.
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