[P] We dig for the Gods that leave no bones
Rafaela; Residency Restructure; Broken Spoke
Flintlock had been an odd, but hardworking man, tirelessly laboring while Esperanza had looked on in abject wonder as he morphed logs into stacked layers of walls before long, and in the wake of his timber-laying, she rushed in with mud, and moss, and insulated the gaps in the wood with a look that, in time, she figured would look quite picturesque – akin to a fairytale, with moss growing over old logs from the mists and the fogs that slowly crawled through the wood of Tall Tree’s outer reaches and pooled down from the tangle.

His pumpkin eyes appraised her work and he would give an affirmative nod, to which she got an elated thrill, only for her to continue this charade for quite some time until, as the sun started its downward decline towards evening and twilight, Flintlock bid his farewell and set off for Charmingtown for a well-deserved night’s rest. Esperanza, meanwhile, sat back on the grassy noll and looked to her house as she took a break in her spackling and appraised the handiwork – an almost-home: a space of her very own. Before long, they’d need to add a roof, but the supplies where there, and they were handy, and her head was already stuffed full of ideas on how to yet put together the inside of the Coltsfoot Cottage.

Esperanza got up, and, with bucket in tow, stepped through the open doorway of the threshold to begin patching the gaps indoors. She enjoyed the way the fresh timber smelled, and the way the floorboards creaked underfoot as though the house had some age to it without the wear, and enjoyed the little things that had made her think of the Mill, whilst still being so very different. With dirtied fingers, she fished into her bucket, and began her spackling anew, thorough with her work and attempting to get the brunt of it finished before the day’s end.

OOC: Backdated for around April 18th-19th
[Image: wolfmoon.gif] Galumph Word of the Day - 22 May 22 verb | to move in a loud and clumsy way

Location: Irving || NPCs: -- || Form: Optime

Stepping across the imaginary threshold that separated Oxbow Quarter from Broken Spoke, Rafaela followed the well-worn trail towards the heart of Irving. It seemed fitting to her that Esperanza should take up residence closer to civilization than the more distant plots of her own chosen quarter. And, secretly, Rafa was glad for that. Having chosen a somewhat central plot, it stood to reason that there would be more eyes on La Carne's remaining kid sister. With the other, along with their parents and adoptive brother, all departed now from Del Cenere proper, it would do she and Calhoun well to have help ensuring Esper remained healthy and safe.

Halfway through these silent thoughts came a reminder: Esperanza was a woman now, grown and capable of self-governance, and the responsibility that Rafaela had carried throughout the first year of her sisters' lives could now be shed.

Dogging the heels of this reminder came the stark realization that, come the thick heat of high summer, Esperanza and Jimena would be entering their second year; the third, for she and Calhoun.

Somehow, somewhere along the winding road of her lifetime, the years had stolen past her as furtively as a snake in tall grass.

"¡Oye, Espé!" she called out, galumphing intentionally to draw added attention to her unannounced arrival. Her little cottage appeared to be coming along well and, with the construction on its walls already started, Rafa thought that she could imagine what it might look like once it was completed.

The injury to her finger had made work on her own home slower, though, with spring growing stronger and soon to give way to summer, Rafaela didn't mind sleeping among the horses and blanketed by stars a while longer.

"This's lookin' good," Rafa said, giving Esper's home an approving gaze before settling it on the bucket with a beckoning nod. "You fancy some help?"

[WC -- 319]

[Image: SURY4mi.png]
Rafaela Tejada
wiki gallery del cenere gang player

signature art by despi
It was the ears that gave her away, large as they were, and as they always had. They swiveled towards the sound of Rafaela before she even had to announce herself, and Esperanza straightened up, attempting to dry her sullied hands by rubbing them over her soiled coveralls. She could not shake the soft and haunted feelings when faced down with her sister; A protector, much like Calhoun, yet there were things that she did not share with her elder siblings, much less her now absent littermate.

Esperanza often felt alone, even when facing down Rafaela, her features often sour like their mother’s, those eyes an echo of their father’s. She smiled regardless at the company, and welcomed La Carne into her unfinished home.

”Yeah, of course, I certainly won’t turn away helpin’ hands n’ all.” Pushing out her foot, she scooted it somewhat towards Rafaela, before stooping to gather up that slurry between her fingers again. ”How’s your own house comin’ along, Rafaela? Good, I hope?”

It wasn’t so far that she could not see, of course – yet, her own indecision and fickle attention had been pulled infinitely towards attempting to put together her own home. It was selfish, of course. Then again, Esperanza had learned to be this way the way Santiago had learned he could escape reality in a bottle, or how Evelyn could escape emotion with callousness and rigorous work ethic.

”I heard you had a lil’ accident. Flintlock mentioned somethin’ about your finger?” It was a teasing jab, and she clicked her tongue against the inside of her teeth as she beamed subtly, keeping the mood light.

OOC: :3c
Location: Irving || NPCs: -- || Form: Optime

How opposite the two of them seemed to her: one with a sharper shade of their kindly father's pale jade eyes, the other a softer hue of the fires that lit the face of their unsmiling mother; one oft smiling herself, the other but a gentle wildflower. But similar, too. Slim, androgynous, industrious. They were sisters, through and through, and while they owed much to their parents (not the least of which were their faults and their traumas) they did not owe them everything. Perhaps they owed them nothing any more.

They were forces of their own now.

Rafaela dipped her nose, acknowledging Esperanza's acceptance of her help, and then she bend her knees and lowered her body into a crouch before the bucket of watered-down earth. The viscous slurry wrapped itself in around her digits when she plunged in her left hand, leaving her with the distant semblance to putting on a glove. When she drew her hand back again, a judicious scoop of the muck dripped between her fingers and dotted her knee. She wasted no time and little thought to helping her sister fill in the cracks of her home's new walls.

"Sure. It's comin' along," she confirmed, giving her sister a fleeting glance from the corner of her eyes. "Plenty left t' do yet, but there ain't no big rush."

Squishing the slurry inside the cracks of her sister's new walls, Rafaela moved her right hand with more care than her left. She paused her ministrations abruptly, but briefly, and twisted her lips together and made a sound in her throat.

"Well," she said in a tone illuminated with revelation. "Didn't much take Mister Sutton for a gossip, but I ought not be s'prised, I reckon." When she looked at Esperanza again, however, there was a glint of something that suggested humor. "Ain't never seen a man look so faint over somethin' as piddlin' as a dislocated finger." Holding her sister's eyes, a smile crept to her face and she shook her head pityingly. "Not in all my life I ain't."

Refilling her handful of slop, Rafaela returned back to the job of closing in the gaps with one large ears swiveled in Esperanza's direction.

"You keepin' up with El Paso's trainin' awright, Esper?"

[WC -- 392]

[Image: SURY4mi.png]
Rafaela Tejada
wiki gallery del cenere gang player

signature art by despi
They were very much alike, though Esperanza would never bring up sensitive things that bound them together; She had learned, after all, through expectation and experience that trauma and the damage it inflicted could fracture and leak itself outwards, poisoning and staining all it touched. When she was young, Rafaela had been strong, and unbreakable. She was iron, just like Evelyn.

But as Esperanza grew, bent and twisted by weight and shadows of things she yet did not understand, she grew to accept the fragility in others. Rafaela, too, had these fatal flaws.

”To be fair, I may have pried,” she began, her lips playing at a tight-lipped smile as she shuffled back to the bucket to fetch another generous scoop of spackle. ”He seemed distracted. I’m surprised he was so rattled, I mean, considerin’ his whole, uh –“

There was a gesture a moment towards her face, attempting to indicate the man’s distinctive facial scar. Their own parents had possessed many a physical marker of the lives they had lived, and perhaps that’s why she had expected something hardened from the carpenter when he had come up unexpectedly soft.

Esperanza allowed herself a laugh then, a quick and tittering sound.

”Oh, it’s going.” She did not elaborate on the quality of such. As if on queue, El Paso’s nickering spilled in through a window from his post outside before it broke into a peel of a deep-bellied whinny. ”He’s a lot of horse. I might need to build a step if I have any hope of climbing onto his back.”

In truth, the very thought was immensely intimidating. She cleared her throat, smearing slurry like a balm between the wood, before she hazarded a glance back towards her sister.

”Maybe you could help me with that kind of stuff. Building the paddock, and, you know, El Paso.” Her father certainly had not set her up the same way he had done with his eldest children. There was another little sound from her – a much more stunted form of a laugh. Through the open window frame hopped her barred rooster, who immediately fluttered down to the floor to examine the sisters’ workflow more closely. ”I wish things came easier sometimes.”

Location: Irving || NPCs: -- || Form: Optime

Lifting her eyes from the dark muck that she was smearing into the crevices of what would become her sister's new home, Rafaela's brows rose and she allowed her smile to tilt just a little bit higher. Looking into Esperanza's face — her tapered snout; her big doe eyes; her enormous ears — she found herself thinking it was little wonder Flintlock had been compelled to share with her what had happened. With a sweet and innocent face like Esper's, her kid sister could probably get the Devil to spill the secrets of Hell if she asked.

Dangerous ability, a thing like that.

Bending back to her work, the spackle squished between her fingers and squelched against the cracks. "Could be that's why, I suppose," she allowed, shifting her weight to scoop up more of the mixture. "You'd think somethin' like that'd toughen ya on up, but I reckon it ain't that way for all folks."

She hadn't given Flintlock's scar much thought — hell, after being raised by parents whose faces were disfigured by scarring — Rafaela scarcely even noticed it. But there was some sense to be made in her suggestion, she supposed. Mostly, though, it didn't matter. Not the incident, not the scars, and certainly not the gossip.

Her ears swiveled to the sounds of El Paso's full-bellied whinny and she blew out a short, breathy laugh.

"I'll ask Bennett if he'll build ya one of them," she said, not looking up until her sister spoke again. When she glanced in her direction, Esper's tawny eyes were already on her. Rafa considered the meaning of her words and then she nodded. "That I could," she agreed. "It'd be good to spend more time t'gether, too."

The sudden arrival of the rooster broke her gaze and drew her attention. Rafaela was glad for the distraction.

"There somethin' specific got you wishin' that, Esper?" Rafa asked, turning back down to her work.

[WC -- 337]

[Image: SURY4mi.png]
Rafaela Tejada
wiki gallery del cenere gang player

signature art by despi

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