'Souls RPG

Full Version: Blood Pumping Instincts
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There's magic in our bones - A north star in our soul - That remembers our way home 

OOC: Set in Miramichi Wilderness

Parzival caught the deer by surprise, a decent sprint led to a pounce on the prey's back and a lethal bite to the neck. The deer crumbled under Parzival, making him have to shift himself around a bit to just avoid accidentally impaling himself on their small horns. A clean kill, a decently easy kill, as Parzival licked his lips to glance around at the now distant and escaped rest of the herd. He then looked down to his kill and hummed to himself, tail flicking in thought. It... just wasn't the same as hunting in a group. Out here on his own, Parzival could manage just fine but... there just wasn't that satifying feeling of teamwork he got when hunting with others. Heck even Perses made a hunt more enjoyable, perhaps for the feeling of competitiveness that the large wolf brought. 

The lion was still enjoying his trek though, the chance to live as he would've done should he chosen to leave Casa all that time ago. Exploring further than he'd ever done before, getting a taste for what these northern lands could offer him. So far, it had decent deer, nice forests... but not much else. Company was what the lion craved, which just proved how much pack-life had broken him. Here he was, Parzival, young male mountain lion, wishing he had someone to chat to. 

It should be hilarious, in a way it was, but Parzival also knew it just meant he'd never leave Casa. Not properly, he could never bring himself to do that. 

Anyway, he had a meal to enjoy, including a lot of spare meat that he'd have to try and hide. Parzival doubted he could make a successful cache of food so far from home and have it not stolen, but even then at least some other lucky soul would get a free meal. Dropping down to rest near the deer, Parzival began the slow process of picking at the skin and muscle to get to the good stuff. 

Not many individuals would go near the scent of freshly spilled blood, but for the devil-may-care Odysseus, the danger was trivial.

In some cases, the blood was canine — in which case Odie was there to lend a hand, throwing himself into trouble to rescue strangers, or offer what small comfort he could to the grievously injured. But, as was the present case, the blood was often that of prey. For all that he spoke of honor, Odie wasn’t above asking to share with a good-natured stranger, or even scavenging off the remains of an abandoned kill. He found himself doing so more and more often, in fact; the luck that had kept hearty during his travels had started to run dry, and his clothes were even baggier than he would have liked.

He knew he’d have to do something about that soon — what he had going on wasn’t sustainable — but what was there to do? Perhaps he could show up at New Caledonia’s doorstep, hoping that Battalion could vouch for him long enough to eat a good meal, or he could offer services to the Ashen, hoping he’d made a good lasting impression on those boys. There were other groups in the area, too.

Could he do it again? After what had happened to the Grin?

He shook himself out of his thoughts, continuing to follow his nose. Deer tracks pathed between the trees, and the scent of them grew stronger. Stronger, too, grew another scent — a feline musk that had his hackles stand on end. Instinct told him to run, and run as quietly as he could. He paused, eyes thinned as he stared through the conifers, and then he took a breath, and he walked closer.

The devil may care, but Odysseus had stopped caring a long time ago.

And there it was: a great tawny lion, larger and more muscular than any other he’d seen in the region, reminiscent of the true lions he’d heard stories about on the sea. Despite himself, his jaw fell slightly slack, then tightened into a faint grin. The sight of the beast should have spelled death for a wayward Luperci, but there was something off — fabric tied around the animal’s neck, and the scent of canines in his fur, faded from travel but too intermingled to be coincidental.

“Hey there gato,” the hound barked. He folded his arms across his chest, which puffed slightly to make up for his diminutive weight compared to the cougar. His ears cocked, as did his wry grin, friendly but tense around the eyes. “You smell like wolves — were they your victims or your friends?”
There's magic in our bones - A north star in our soul - That remembers our way home 

OOC: Hello hello

A downed deer would surely be an attractive draw for anyone looking to get a meal. Parzival knew enough of the natural laws to know that stealing food as just as viable as hunting it down yourself. Whilst he was quickly enjoying as much of the meat as he could, Parz had his small ears trained to hear anyone approaching. It could be another lion, a bear perhaps, or some canine. Now Parzival was confident that he could protect his kill, he was a male lion, larger than average and raised in a pack of warrior wolves. However, he was also fully aware of the value to his life, who back home needed him to stay alive. So should someone approach that Parzival wasn't entire sure he could scare off... he'd probably abandon his food. 

Fortunately, he'd already gotten a decent fill from his quick eating by the time his keen ears caught some approaching footsteps. With the pace of each foot fall being spread out, Parz guessed it to be a shifted canine, but with only one approaching the lion wasn't all that worried. 

The canine wasn't deterred by the obvious smell of cougar in the air, so Parzival waited around for their approach, curious to see who was daring to meet him. Worst case scenario it was a cocky hunter with a weapon and a desire for lion pelt. Best case, it was just some loner looking for company and perhaps a free meal. When they spoke to him, Parzival put his bets on the latter, slowly getting up from where he was lying over his kill to take in their appearance. They were some kind of dog mix, something many Cavaliers had in their blood but never really showed in their mostly wolfish appearances. Small and not too intimidating, yet bold enough to speak out to Parzival. 

Catching his smell of wolf, which gave Parzival hope that this was someone who wasn't going to jump to their first conclusion and try to attack him or run screaming, especially given their question. 

"It would've been a lot of victims with how much I stink of wolf." Parzival commented back, tongue licking the side of his lips. "Friends... or family really. Good job picking up on that, most just assume I'm out to kill them or cause problems, when really I'm probably more likely to look for canine company than even so much as tolerate my own kind."

The dog didn't smell of any particular place, though Parz's nose wasn't nearly as good as picking up on things as a canine's was, he assumed they were on their own. 

"Need some food?" Parzival asked, his tail moving to brush over the deer carcass. "I'm pretty big but not big enough to eat a whole deer, so it'll just rot in a hole I dig unless I share it."

Despite his bold call, Odysseus stood in a manner that he hoped would both grant him a head-start to flee, or deter the cougar from attacking — because few lone predators (i.e., that were not Odie) would risk injury for a pointless scrap. A wound would slow them down during a hunt, and hunger would lead to weakness, and weakness could mean death. There was a thin line between looking troublesome enough to deter fighting, and so troublesome as to be a threat that needed eliminated, though.

Odie was not a big Luperci, but he was armed, and the cross of his arms showed some of the leather sheaths decorating his lithe body. Yet he kept his hands very far from the hilt of his weaponry.

When the cougar spoke, however, it alleviated his concerns. Odie laughed and pointed out, “You are quite the specimen though. I believe you could be a serial killer if you put your mind to it.”

That the massive feline had friends made sense to him; he’d known other “wild” creatures to form bonds with Luperci for protection or easier meals. Family piqued his interest, though. His dark ears flopped with a tilt of his head. ”You are strange,” he said, but with a grin that showed this was no insult.

”And charitable,” he added when the dark tip of the cat’s long tail ran across the freshly-killed carcass. His own tail wagged, though he tried not to look desperate. His thinness spoke for itself. ”I only wish I had something to give you in return. What’s your name, my friend?”
There's magic in our bones - A north star in our soul - That remembers our way home 

OOC: Hello hello

Parzival scoffed, though his golden eyes shone pridefully, at the idea this stranger suggested of him being strong enough to go on a killing spree. Perhaps it was true, perhaps a different kind of Parzival could've gone around notoriously taking down canines, putting fear into the hearts of any travelling alone. But instead, the true Parz was something quite different, if just as strong. "Hrm, I think I'd make a good folk tale... but I also don't really fancy the notoriety. Too much effort to have so many people scared of me." 

Now strange was something Parzival commonly heard, though given the context and tone it didn't make his whiskers twitch with annoyance. This individual wasn't calling him a pet or odd because he was something wrong, more just something different, which Parzival typically took pride in. "That comes from how I was raised you see." Parzival replied, then chuckled. "Charitable comes from it too. Where I grew up... the canine there live by how much they're willing to give to others. I'm a good example of how charitable they tend to be."

Moving a little from his kill so the other could inspect it without fear that Parz was just tricking them, the cat then went to lie down once more, head still up to observe his companion. "Your company is plenty, plus the fact that you haven't attempted to be rude or stupid when seeing me." Parzival admitted, "And it's Parzival."

“Bah, you’re right,” Odysseus said with a sigh, his eyes narrowing with amusement at the thought. “You wouldn’t be able to get a night’s rest for all the people hunting you then. But neither would those scared of you.”

He watched muscles ripple under the cougar’s tawny coat as he moved away from the carcass. Canines charitable enough to take in a lion and feed it as well as Parzival seemed fed — that impressed him. Some would call it idiotic, to waste resources on another species, or on any outsider at all, but there was no denying that they had to be well-off to do so.

”If everyone thought that, I’d be too fat to walk,” Odie remarked as he approached the kill. He sat down before drawing one of his knives, telegraphing his motions well enough that he hoped the cougar wouldn’t think them suspicious. With the blade he sliced off a hunk of meat, dropping this into his mouth, then began to carve another piece.

”I’m Odysseus, or Odie for short. I have to ask, who were the folks who managed to raise you so well?”
There's magic in our bones - A north star in our soul - That remembers our way home 

OOC: stuff here

If only all canine could act with the common sense of this man, then Parzival's life would be so much easier and he wouldn't need to put so much effort into going out and exploring. Cedric had once convinced Parzival that wearing a piece of cloth, a sign of canine meddling, would prove that he was friendly, but such a theory only worked where the royal purple colour was well known. To strangers, they saw the giant cat, claws and fangs first, then the cute little bandana last as they decided to run or fight. 

"Makes me wonder how other lions deal with all that nonsense. Sounds like far too much work to keep moving around and avoiding being hunted." Parzival knew there were many reasons for a canine to hunt down a mountain lion. Beyond protecting their land, Parzival literally lived in a pack where the high ranking members wore mountain lion fur as a mantle, something that had never upset him nearly as much as it should. 

"Mmm, that would be the dream." Parzival purred back, just thinking of such a luxury life of having all his food delivered to him, whilst the cat relaxed on a giant and comfortable bed just for him. 

"Casa di Cavalieri." Parzival replied. "It's to the south of here, a bit distant from everywhere else but a pretty big pack from what I can tell, filled to the brim with fighters and heroes and all that stuff." The noble causes of Casa weren't even something Parzival disagreed with either, he'd been raised to appreciate them, but add his own feline twist to how far he'd go to protect others. "I actually got raised by one of the leaders there, makes me a prince technically, though I'll just settle for being a Cavalier, as good a warrior as any of you canine with your cheats and your weapons."

For all his misadventures, Odysseus had never shared a meal with another apex predator before. Despite his jaunty demeanor, his instincts roiled inside him — shouting at him to run, or bark, because this massive feline was a threat to his health and potentially the health of those he was charged to protect. (His instincts didn’t know that Odie had nobody whose health he cared about here, including his own.) Even in their conversation, for all their jokes and banter, it was impossible to forget that Parzival was not another canine; he had the self-assurance of a cat, and even his speech formed with subtle differences along his long, killing fangs.

Carving off slivers of meat (partially because dipping his head into the carcass would make him more vulnerable to attack), the hound cocked an ear toward his unlikely companion as he replied.

”Heroes?” he asked, smiling. ”Self-styled heroes, or do you believe in their nobility, too?” He spoke lightly, teasingly, but he was intrigued, and it showed in the tilt of his ears and a faint excitement in his eyes.

He laughed and raised his hands. ”Cheats! Prince Lion, how do you expect us canines to fare without them?” He gestured between them, drawing a clear comparison between Parzival’s muscle and his own lean shape; the cougar had a good sixty pounds on him. Between a lone cougar and a lone wolf without weaponry, there was no contest — let alone a skinny hound without any tricks up his sleeve.

Popping another chunk of meat into his mouth, grimacing around a pocket of fat that he had to dig from his molars, Odie chattered on. ”I’ve met many a fighter in my time, but few that I would call heroes. Most only look out for their own — which is only natural, supongo.”