Saavik

Out of Character

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axi --
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Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:05 pm axiom#9456
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Sat Aug 11, 2018 4:54 pm
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In Character

Female 27 Nov 2014
grey wolf Ortus
As a grey wolf, she is quite large for a canine. At 31'' inches at the shoulder in her Lupus form, she becomes a towering 6'6'' tall when in Optimus. With this obvious height advantage comes muscle mass - her weight fluctuates around 220 lbs, based on her last meal. She is quite trim, with well-developed muscles and prominent cheekbones. However, it's difficult to tell how athletic she is without paying extra attention to her thin face and strong quadriceps.

Having grown up in the far north, she inherited a thick coat of greyscale fur, topped with black 'hair' in her Optime form - though she keeps it cut short, out of habit from growing up with hellish winds. Her white undercoat is luxuriously soft with enough insulating density to make her comfortable in even the worst snowstorm in Nova Scotia. The wiry overcoat above is tough to the touch and speckled with various greys to help blend into a snow-coated environment. When summer comes around, her pelt becomes much thinner and obscures less of her muscle mass - though she becomes a walking puffball leaving a constant trail of shed hairs in her wake.

There are a few bits of her that don't change with the seasons, though. Her pepper-black paw pads and nose are thick and resilient against the cold. Her eyes, bright leaf-green, seem the only pieces of her that aren't devoid of color. She also keeps a Luperci-made hunting knife strapped to her left thigh.
She loves nothing greater than exploring - besides wood-carving, that is. She's got a knack for stumbling into interesting situations, as she's almost completely driven by her curiosity; if she's curious about something, nothing in the world will prevent her from exploring that concept. In that way, she can be surprisingly stubborn for a wanderer; once her interest has stuck its teeth in something, she never lets go. This is most evident by her carpentry skills, as she's put plenty of hours into carving wood and etching designs into it to become quite proficient at the skill.

On the other hand, if she isn't interested in something, almost nothing can encourage her to pick it up. Despite the necessity for learning polite manners in a pack, she never quite got the hang of showing respect to the more dominant figures in the pack - she can't even manage to hold her crass tongue for too long. Ironically, she considers the fault to lie with other people, as they're too inflexible to tolerate her carefree ways.

But she doesn't intend to be mean to others, honestly. Saavik is simply a direct sort of person; she hates dealing with pulling the truth into twisted shapes just to make it easier for another person to swallow. She's naturally good at taking criticism, usually letting nothing but the obviously callous remarks get to her; this easygoing part of her turns into a problem as she expects everyone to be as easygoing as herself. Add that she's introverted by default, disliking useless drawn-out interactions with other people, and she becomes a chaotic cog in almost any group.
Growing up in a pack to the far north, Saavik's first memories are of cold winds and eating frozen meats. Born in the freezing winter, several months before the rest of the pups for that year, she got used to the feeling of isolation within a crowd. But she did alright, with several males to the pack slipping in and out of fatherhood roles throughout her childhood - nobody really knew who sired her, so she got the luxury of several mentors and the misfortune of far too many potential half-siblings. Saavik never formed strong bonds with anyone in the pack beside her mother, though their relationship remained strained throughout her childhood.

Her mother, a demanding crone old enough to be Saavik's grandmother, treated raising Saavik like the last mission of her life. Even when Saavik was a year old, she understood that her mother never planned on having her at this late stage of her life - but because she came about anyway, she supposed that her mother thought it best to ensure this oops child didn't die in the cold. Because of the careful attention of her mother and various father-figures, Saavik never went hungry before anyone else. But living in the north never came easily, and this hardly spoiled her.

In one of the worst encounters with nature's brutality, she wandered too far from the group when she was only a yearling - likely out of the childish feeling of invincibility. But she wandered too far, and her timing couldn't have been worse if she tried. As night fell, so did a massive snowstorm. Alone and cold, she searched aimlessly for anything warm at all. By sheer luck, she stumbled across an injured bobcat kitten and instinctively curled around it under the snow.

When her pack tracked her down in morning, she refused to separate from the younger wildcat. She credited his warmth and her dumb luck for her survival that night, and wouldn't just let him go back into the wild - even if she knew that his mother was waiting for him, one of the kitten's eyes was blinded by whatever assaulted him before she encountered his limp form.

Eventually, her mother relented and allowed her to raise the bobcat kitten up as her 'pet.' However, it soon became obvious that the only pet-like quality the bobcat had was letting Saavik pick out his name. Otherwise, he, now known as Wicks, acted more like a friend that couldn't make up his mind whether he liked showing affection or not. When Wicks started picking up canine High Speak, he became Saavik's most trusted friend - though he also got her in a fair bit more trouble than she would've gotten into without his help.

As she grew up, grew increasingly isolated from the rest of her pack - her introverted tendencies became more prominent as she had an antisocial cat for a best friend. The skills she chose to learn, likewise, didn't help; she started practicing carpentry with passion the moment she held wood and a hunting knife in each hand. She enjoyed being able to create functional objects with nothing more than two tools; she could lose herself in the creation of various objects, from simple staffs to ornate mugs with complicated etched designs. Of course, she learned the necessary basic skills of her pack, like hunting and skinning furs, but she always came back to woodworking whenever she had a few spare hours.

Eventually, when she got to about two and a half years old, she came into her adulthood right as her pack experienced severe growing pains. They were growing too large for their territory, but too far north to simply relocate to better hunting grounds; they needed to splinter off into smaller groups. Saavik, with her adventurous spirit, saw the end of her pack's golden days as more of a beginning than an end; she felt ready to leave her family to go into the wilds - but not alone.

She initially split with a small group comprising of her mother, two of her older half-sisters, and Wicks. After about six months of living in their family band, her mother grew terminally ill with the flu and passed shortly after displaying symptoms. Once her mother died, the remaining four split into two even groups - her sisters wanted to stay north, while Saavik wanted to explore the southern lands. In the last six months of journeying, the band went steadily more south, enjoying the warmer climate and, with it, an abundance of prey and plants compared to their icy home.

Now alone with only Wicks as a companion, after spending the first three years of her life in a near-constant white landscape, she found her curiosity about the world invigorated once she journeyed farther south. She spent the next few months of her life free as a bird, traveling from territory to territory with nothing more than Wicks and what she could carry in her leather pack. But this life suited her; she liked seeing new things in the day, only to watch the same stars twinkle above as she fell asleep.

The further south she went, the more competition with other canines she seemed to encounter - until it seemed she could hardly walk anywhere without infringing on someone's territory or a pack's. Finally growing tired of feeling like a scavenging wanderer skirting around prime hunting territory, she made up her mind to try joining one of the friendlier packs in the area.