[P] I stand here now, ready for the judgement call
#1
I want to believe - No, I choose to believe - That I was made to become - A sanctuary

Dated 10th September - For Nazario

The rescue and repairs to Freddy's wounds had occurred with the boy mostly dipping into unconciousness, though the entire thing had Freddy constantly forgetting what reality he was in, sending the delirous youth right back into the charred village whenever he flickered awake. It had been a cycle that only ended the next day, or what Freddy could judge was the next day given the afternoon sun dipping into the room, a place he'd confirmed as the Casa Inadaptada from the time he'd brought Catalina here. Once awake though, Freddy could just breath, silently looking around the room or to whoever was keeping him company. He was safe... though that became less and less soothing as the boy remembered what he needed to do. And who wasn't safe right now because their life was in Freddy's hands. 

All he needed to do is betray the Gang. Betray his family. Again

That moment back in the charred village, when Freddy had nodded and agreed to help his father, had been a moment of complete release. Freddy had, in that moment, given up all hope he might've maintained about living a life where he could be loved or accepted. He'd assumed that he existed to just be used, to trick and lie and survive off the suffering of others. But in working for Pirate, his awful father, at least then the struggle of morality would be over and Freddy could just give up. 

Freddy could just be a puppet, doing what he was told and feeling nothing. 

Freddy closed his eyes, lifting his good arm over his face to mask the build up of tears that trickled out. Letting go was the hardest part... because...

He loved the Ashen. He loved his home. Freddy never wanted to betray anyone, not Casa, not the Gang... he just felt too weak and scared to try and fight back. Putting his own life first. Or in this case, the life of his sister. Dynia would never see her fathers again after this, she'd be stuck in the same boat as Freddy, forced by Pirate to do whatever he wanted and... Freddy couldn't let that happen. 

Screw it, he couldn't betray the Gang, and he couldn't let Pirate hold a child hostage. Freddy was the Vigilante. Wounded, exhausted and broken yes... but Freddy's title didn't waver just because things had gotten hard. And the Gang wouldn't fall just because of one crazed man and his crew, Freddy would make sure of it. If it was the last thing he did before being banished from another home, Freddy would do his job. Swallowing, Freddy lowered his arm and glanced around. No one was in the room, perhaps to give the weak boy a moment of privacy. Freddy took it, and struggled to his feet, hobbling from bed to wall to then leave the room. Scents were all over the large house, but the boy was after one in particular and limped towards it. Nazario was home, the first stroke of luck, otherwise Freddy would've had to crawl around town to find the Rey.

A weak hand knocked upon the door frame, which was then leaned upon by the boy. "N-Nazario I... n-need t-to t... talk." Freddy rasped. His voice came out much like it did when Freddy had given Aldora the truth around a year ago, cycling back once more now that the boy knew he very much needed to force it out. "Th...the Ash..en... n-not safe. N-need to... s-stop them."



Fredrick Knight

I want to take shelter but I'm ready, ready to fight.
Somewhere in the middle I feel a little paralyzed.
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#2
OOC: -- || WC: --
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Fredrick had been brough to the Casa Inadaptada in quite a state – wounded, weakened, battered, bruised. Down a finger, and on his luck (or so it seemed), Nazario had been overcome by a thick and cloying concern, remembering all manner of turmoil that churned through his thoughts until memories of the conflict in recent years bled all together and he numbed himself to its concept – There, in that clarity, he could think

The gang had faced conflict before. It was only by the law of nature that they would face it again; but to encounter an enemy brazen enough to attack a high ranked individual. The Rey Salvaje was only capable of wondering the capabilities – were they behind Dynia’s disappearance as well? Luciana’s memory scratched at his sympathies, and her aftermath beckoned his attentions as he stared into the candle light on his table as he laced his fingers and pressed his lips firmly against the backs of his knuckles, propping his head up.

His ear twitched at the knock, and the voice, prompting Nazario to turn and look to the small, weakened Freddy, every bit worse for wear, and every bit confirming his fears – them, outsiders, interlopers. Schooling his expression, his gold eye darted over Fredrick’s form, before he got up, opening the door wider and taking an arm into his hand, the other fanning across shoulder blades as he ushered the Vigilante from his doorway into a seat, taking the beats between their impending conversation to compose himself.

Cool. Calculating. He would not show weakness, not now, not like this.

The Rey Salvaje pulled up another chair, scraping softly across the wood floor, before he leaned forward, propping up by his elbows onto his knees to give the young man his undivided attention.

”You shouldn’t be up,” he warned, soft, scolding, yet forgiving for this transgression. ”But since you are, explain – who do we need t’ be stopping?”

I DON'T WANT TO BE A PROUD MAN, JUST WANT TO BE A MAN
a little less like my father, and more like my dad

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#3
I want to believe - No, I choose to believe - That I was made to become - A sanctuary

Dated 10th September - For Nazario

This confession Freddy was about to embark on felt far too familiar; here he stood at the door to Aldora's home, about to tell her that he'd kept secret for months something that had cost the pack two lives and many sleepless nights. Ready to admit what he knew, and ready to face the consequences of his actions as a scapegoat, a fate Freddy seemed to carry with him everywhere. Nazario needed to know what was to happen to his pack and prepare for it. As the Rey, he would also be called upon to judge Freddy for his actions and the faults he had in this whole thing. Pirate... was Freddy's fault. The man might have his own reasons and goals, but it had been the Vigilante who spent time with him. Let him into Charmingtown, escorted him away and luring himself into a trap. Freddy had fueled the flames that his father was creating, now all the boy could do was point them out to Nazario and hope that Del Cenere could extinguish them in time. 

With permission to enter, Freddy hobbled to a seat and let that short breath of time help him prepare himself. He would speak, however weak his voice might be, and admit all that was to happen like a sinner pleading for mercy. Nazario showed him concern, a small sample of kindness to lessen the blow that would come later, no doubt. Once Freddy admitted to his actions, the Rey would surely take all semblance of kindness away. 

"I...I-it's my f-fault... I let him i-in. T-trick m-me." The boy rasped. "M-my.... father. H-he and hi-his crew will a-attack you. Ch-chamingtown." A cough broke up Freddy's confession, from the struggle of not only an unused voice but one that had been only recently ravaged by screams. The Vigilante swallowed, and tried to continue. "H-he did th-this to me... a-and has taken Dynia. I-is using her to t-try and make me... w-work for him. W-wanted me t-to kill you." Freddy's brow furrowed, for a moment wondering if he should just do it now; attack Nazario, most likely die trying, but at least fullfil his job to his father and guaruntee Dynia's safety. But no, Freddy's loyalty had blossomed far beyond that weakness he'd shown in Casa, he could not betray the Ashen. His family. Instead Freddy would give them his own life, let it rest in the hands of the Gang and under no other control. 

"I w-won't... do it. Dynia... I-I will g-get her back." Freddy growled, the rasp to his voice scratching against the determination in his tone. Fierce eyes of green were brighter than they'd been for a long while, and the Vigilante wasn't giving room for doubt. "M-my father will a-attack soon... I will g-get back and he...help. He h-has eyes within th-the pack th-that w-will attack as well. Th-the crew are s-strong but... Ashen s-stronger... we ha... have the numbers... m-make s-sure e-everyone is r-ready t-to fight them."

Asking others to fight felt dry in Freddy's mouth. To his core, the boy was a Knight, putting himself in harms way before considering others. He didn't want to push pressure on the Ashen to fight back, to risk their lives in such a way. But there was no way Freddy could fend off the whole crew after getting Dynia back. Having faith in his pack would do and, honestly, felt like the right thing to do. Even if it worried him, Freddy knew the Ashen were strong. They were survivors of many things, this would just be another challenge they'd overcome. One Freddy wished they didn't have to, however. His large ears pulled back, blazing eyes dropping a little now as Freddy found himself unable to keep Nazario's gaze. 

"S-sorry... th-this is all my f-fault. Wh-when the f-fight is over... I... a-accept blame f-for all of it... a-and... pun...punishment."



Fredrick Knight

I want to take shelter but I'm ready, ready to fight.
Somewhere in the middle I feel a little paralyzed.
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#4
OOC: -- || WC: --
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The coyjackal had always been something of an enigma, but reliable. Hardworking. Nazario had thought him a valuable asset, as everyone in the Gang was, but there was something more indispensable about the jack-of-all-trades, of how quick and willing he was to learn, to help, to aide. Whilst his origins were still muddied to the Rey Salvaje, Fredrick had moved and conducted himself with a righteous purpose.

Besides, Del Cenere was built by strays. It had not mattered where they came from, but how they had found themselves here, nestled north of the Burnt Church Mountains.

When the young man’s ragged voice continued, it was apologetic, heaving and wounded, and Nazario’s gaze had steeled then, sizing, calculating, worried still. Wanted me to kill you was a point of note, but, given the honesty, brutal and thick on the Knight’s tongue as he rattled it alongside apologies, it lacked the edge of true threat. As he slowed, and accepted his fate, the Rey Salvaje rubbed at his scruffy chin, unpacking all that was suddenly unloaded onto his plate.

”Punishment,” he echoed, before he leaned forward again, reaching out to take one of Fredrick’s narrow shoulders in his palm. ”No – Fredrick, please; This is not your fault.”

The sins of blood were not things inherited, as far as he knew. Nazario lacked such legacy to fall back on himself.

”You are not your father’s pawn. Y’didn’t – couldn’t – know, so this? This is on him. Not you. We will drive ‘em off.”

His hand fell away after a moment, before his fingers laced with one another, elbows propped on his knees. ”Tell me everything you know. That crew will face the brunt of that punishment.”

I DON'T WANT TO BE A PROUD MAN, JUST WANT TO BE A MAN
a little less like my father, and more like my dad

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#5
I want to believe - No, I choose to believe - That I was made to become - A sanctuary

Dated 10th September - For Nazario

Freddy's good hand clenched into the fabric of the bandage around his leg, staring at the floorboards as he put all his energy into not just running right there and then. It was what he'd done in Casa; right after confessing to his crimes, the boy had run to escape with his life. The path of the coward, one Freddy would not repeat anymore, proven as such in the boy's willingness to take all blame for this awful event should any harm come to the Ashen. 

But despite giving Nazario permission to mark Freddy's punishment, the man did no such thing, and Freddy released a shuddering breath when the Rey placed a hand carefully on his shoulder. A touch that in the past had caused Freddy to lash out and fearfully bite, now only made tears draw to the boy's eyes, shining with a little bit of hope. Nazario and the Ashen wouldn't hate Freddy for this, that statement spoke through the leader's words and actions. Perhaps Freddy wouldn't forgive himself, but that didn't matter, not right now. 

Swallowing his nerves, Freddy nodded his head when Nazario asked for more information, something the boy would happily give. "H-he has... a-around six in th-the crew. S-some are wolves, th-the strongest one seems t-to... st-stay with my f-father. Th-they're all tr...trained t-to fight but... a-at least s-some are t-too eager for v-violence. Th...they can be o-overwhelmed by u-us so... ma-make sure the Ashen st-stay in groups if p-possible." Because numbers would be the advantage here, numbers was something Pirate just didn't have. "H-he... s-said he had e-eye in t-town so... th-there may be more."



Fredrick Knight

I want to take shelter but I'm ready, ready to fight.
Somewhere in the middle I feel a little paralyzed.
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#6
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Good relationships, faithful relationships, he knew were few and far between. These things took time, required nurturing, a give-and-take and foundation of trust that he felt, distinctly, that the Del Mar patriarch had lacked when they had faced him. So, too, did Fredrick’s father; and so, armed with this knowledge, he felt certain and resolute in his own security. His hand did not stray from the boy’s shoulder, extending his own trust to try and forge that connection, something of mutual understanding.

Fredrick had looked shaken. The Rey Salvaje had wondered if that was the remnants of betrayal, and his dark lips had pursed, brow furrowing, and he swallowed, anticipating, before the boy divulged.

”Then we will work quietly and quickly. I will start spreadin’ the word immediately so folks know to be on the look out.” Preparation was key.

”Y’did well, comin’ to me with this…” His gold eye skimmed and scoured the speckled coyjackal’s face, catching the vulnerable green in his eyes – a boy, still, despite it all, despite the wounds, despite the fittings of a man. Nazario knew that the world could be harsh, that the land outside his own borders was cruel. Sentiment was a quick snack to be devoured.

”We should plan. Y’said there’s six, maybe more? D’you know what any of ‘em look like?”

I DON'T WANT TO BE A PROUD MAN, JUST WANT TO BE A MAN
a little less like my father, and more like my dad

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#7
I want to believe - No, I choose to believe - That I was made to become - A sanctuary

Dated 10th September - For Nazario

With each word, Freddy found the weight crushing him lift just a little. The pressure remained but it was muted, not because Freddy felt more at ease but because he knew with each truth he gave to Nazario there was no turning back. Freddy couldn't retreat now and help his father, nor could he just run away and leave the Gang to their fate. Freddy was cementing his place in this story by continuing to give his word, and therefore his life, to see how it would pan out. 

With the words of the Rey Salvaje praising his decision, Freddy took a deep breath and slowly nodded his head. Struggle as he might to see himself as worthy of forgiveness... right now this was the scenario Freddy had decided to run away from in Casa. Should he have been brave and aided the Cavaliers before the tragedy, then perhaps their lives wouldn't have been torn apart. But instead Freddy had told them the truth when blood had been spilt and ran before accepting consequences, a self-exile of cowardice. 

That hadn't happened here in the Gang. Should blood be spilt, everyone would already know who was responsible, meaning Freddy couldn't just run away from this anymore. 

"Th-there were... three I s-saw the most." Freddy began. "A-a l...large b-black wolf. He... he is v-very strong." The boy good hand went to cover the bandages over his wounded one, feeling the stump pulse with a phantom pain. "H-he guards my... my father th-though. Th-the other are al... also wolves. One b-black and white.. th-the other patched." After that, Freddy frowned. The issue with his current memory is that a lot of his time with his father was torture, literally, so remembering faces was hard. He wanted to mention Deonach as well but... Freddy had a feeling the medical man wasn't going to be involved in this raid. "H-hard... t-to remember others." Freddy rasped and shook his head, giving Nazario a look of guilt. 



Fredrick Knight

I want to take shelter but I'm ready, ready to fight.
Somewhere in the middle I feel a little paralyzed.
  Reply
#8
OOC: -- || WC: --
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Wolves.

It was as Nazario should have – and at this point, often did – come to expect. Fredrick, though – had not an ounce of the blackened blood in him. A shame, then, that his father was a traitor to his kind, turning cleverness into a tool to outwit the fellow Coyote, throwing his lot in with those which persecuted them.

Fredrick was different though. Fredrick was a proper Coyote, a proper Del Ceneren. The moment he moved to nurse his hand and that missing finger, Nazario pursed his black lips into a thin line, whiskers bristling somewhat as he thought, and gave a brisk nod.

They would disseminate this information where it could run its course through controlled, trusted crowds; With the chance for other eyes, and unwanted ears, Nazario felt he could not risk a broader announcement at large.

”That is alright,” he answered, trying to formulate a mental image of the aggressors. ”Wolves. Black, black-and-white. Patched. This? This we can work with. You’ve done real well, Fredrick.”

There was a solid pause again as his gold eye rested against Fredrick’s narrow, sharp features, marred already with a sign of his devotion to the Gang, and he measured his own expectation.

”I am placing my trust in you, Fredrick.” That was a gravely important gift. ”I would see to it that you got a place in the Ashen Ring – if you are willing.”

I DON'T WANT TO BE A PROUD MAN, JUST WANT TO BE A MAN
a little less like my father, and more like my dad

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