The Right Direction

POSTED: Fri Jun 07, 2019 3:09 pm

"I can't keep doing this forever, right?" A wolf muttered to himself through breaths, exhaustion finally stopping him in his tracks. Luno leaned his bare back against an oak tree and settled down on its roots, his gray fur drenched in sweat after hours of travelling. His hopes of finding his family slowly dwindled like a candle nearing its end, desperately grasping into whatever's left of the wick. Raising his head, he cast his turquoise eyes heavenward, watching the afternoon clouds drift by as he let a question tumble around in his mind, the question that he still has no answer for.

Should I give up?

Luno has been journeying for the past month after recovering from an accident that separated him from his pack of naturalists that resulted to multiple injuries. However, the wanderer knew not to dwell at the events that transpired in the past, and instead considered what he could do in the present.

While he clung on the assumption that what he's doing may be right, the doubt that he only made his situation worse grew heavier with every step he took forward. After a few moments of intently staring at the sky, he relaxed himself and tossed the question away back in the depths of his noggin. He's not prepared to answer it yet.

He ran his hands through his cheek fur, planning on what course of action he should do next. He wouldn't do hunting— he just ate few fresh kills a few hours ago. Perhaps he could wander around the place and find himself a nearby stream? The afternoon may be great so far, but his boredom is enormously greater. Besides, walking around a bit more wouldn't hurt him.
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Wolf
Zevel
Luperci

POSTED: Sat Jun 08, 2019 2:35 am

He hadn’t needed to stray too far from home. Mysteries and wonders littered the grounds of ‘Soulsland like coins glinting at the bottom of a wishing well, ripe for discovery if one would only look. Though plenty of work needed done at the Caledonian refugee camp, Tamlin’s primary skill had always been that of scouting—they needed resources, after all, anything that could be used to further their healing efforts. Thus it had come to pass that Tamlin had torn himself from Fennore’s side (reluctantly, always reluctantly) and gone off exploring again. Interestingly, the golden coydog found himself solitary today. His buckskin horse was working for Iomair, and though Sabriel had joined his side at first, she had found herself distracted. As they had worked their way through the wilderness of the Northern Tides, the Sunwarden had heard a sound that was becoming all too familiar—the cry of a golden eagle.

He had lifted his eyebrows at the avian when the sound reached him, and Sabriel had clucked in satisfaction before swooping off the join the other in flight. The male had been coming around on several occasions, now that he knew where Sabriel lived, though she was unusually mute on the subject. Tamlin had tried to keep his playful teasing to a minimum, but it was difficult. As he watched her feathered silhouette meet with his in the sky, he resolved to question her more heartily later… or at least make a few jokes at her expense. She would have done the same to him.

Now alone, the red-haired scout had continued on through the trees. He had found little yet that might interest his Kingdom, and had in fact been considering changing direction, when he heard a whispering sound. His ears perked upwards, his silent pawsteps carrying him closer. Though he carried his bow, he did not draw it. There, up ahead, a wolf was sliding down the trunk of a tree. Tamlin could only see a sliver of gray from his angle, though as he crept around for a better view he could see a chest that rose and fell raggedly. The first thought that came to him was that he had found another from his homeland who had survived the violence, fleeing to Nova Scotia; excitement thrummed in his chest, and he stepped forward without attempting to mask the sound of his paws. “Are you all right?” His tenor call was warm, without any malice. Even if he was wrong, the resting gentleman seemed to be in a bit of distress.

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Luperci

POSTED: Mon Jun 10, 2019 5:49 am

The question startled him, his attention landing on the stranger who voiced his concerns— someone whom he had never met. He knew that he would meet another Luperci eventually, but now that he's in the presence of one, he doesn't know how to properly react. Luno just froze on his seat, his ears raised and forward, his eyes trained on the coydog that approached him confidently. Thoughts of escape started to form in his mind, preparing to flee when the time comes. "Yes." came his short reply, wanting to appear as harmless as possible. According to his father, their presence only meant trouble.

Ever since Luno was born, he was surrounded by fierce wolves who actively avoided strangers, especially if the stranger is in their optime form. He never learned the reason why, but he never opposed the idea either. He feared his father would hold contempt against him because of his own curiosity, silently obeying his father's wishes. Nevertheless, Serre's restrictions didn't stop Luno from shifting one afternoon. After his "fiasco", or so his father called it, he was forced to promise to never shift again once he controlled that ability...until he was separated.

"You're a Luperci, right?" he already knew the answer to his question, but he couldn't help himself but ask. The person before him is different from the wolves that raised him, and there are many things that he wanted to know about. Supporting himself with an arm on the tree trunk, he picked himself up to face the stranger eye-to-eye. "My name is Luno." he introduced himself with a slight bob of his head, unsure if he was doing the gesture right. "What's your name?" Luno asked in a meek manner, his muzzle twisting into an awkward smile. Now that he's standing in front of the coydog, he couldn't help but compare himself to the stranger based on appearance.
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POSTED: Wed Jun 12, 2019 11:57 pm

As he came around, careful to leave a good distance between them, Tamlin was able to ascertain that this stranger was no Caledonian. Though it sparked some disappointment, he quickly let the thoughts fall to the side, more concerned with the flagrant shock contorting Luno’s face. Hoping to set him at ease, Tamlin smiled calmly, keeping his hands far from his bow. Though the man denied distress, he certainly didn’t appear to be comfortable either, and had the appearance of a man run ragged. It was not in Tamlin to impose upon him, but he didn’t seem entirely averse to the Sunwarden’s presence either.

“Yes,” he affirmed at the question, and his golden head cocked to one side curiously. He thought to indulge the inquiry with more detail, but it was hard to bid his tongue to speak at the best of times, and social indulgences were not among those. Was the stranger expecting to be approached by someone more feral? Tamlin remembered meeting Woodsmoke on the mountain… were those the people that Luno was more familiar with? The arms and legs spoke otherwise, but Tamlin was not a man educated on different cultures, and he couldn’t say for sure. “It’s nice to meet you, Luno. I’m Tamlin Anor.” His own smile grew when Luno offered his own, but his green-gold eyes were checking him over for wounds to account for his disarray.

“Sorry to sneak up on you. My camp isn’t too far from here. I thought you might need help.” He held out his hands, palm up, by way of apology. Luno didn’t appear very burly, though he was young yet—mayhaps he’d fill out in time. For now, he seemed easily spooked, and so Tamlin resolved to monitor his own body language like one did for an anxious horse, hoping not to scare him off before he had a chance to feel out the situation. After experiencing his own crisis in the fall of Caledonia, he would never turn down another in need.

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Becky
Luperci

POSTED: Sat Jun 15, 2019 2:26 pm

The wolf scrutinized the coydog from where he stood, his head low and his eyes forward, darting from the unknown, curvy stick that was slung on their back to their clothes, which Luno mentally questioned what its true purpose for. He straightened his posture and exhaled deeply, his shoulders relaxing even more now that he was quite positive that the person meant no harm to him. Somehow, Luno doesn't feel any guilt now that he's acting against his father's warnings, in fact, he already took a liking on the stranger's presence. Luno simply cannot act casual because of the major differences between their appearances, which he suddenly felt conscious about.

As expected, they said yes. Luno knew that it was a stupid question, and now he kind of regrets he even asked them. Subconsciously, he mimicked their movements, tilting his head a bit to the side, his eyebrows furrowing slightly when he remembered this is what his sister, Rowena, did sometimes. There are things that he is still piecing together, such as the reason behind their attire, but perhaps he would figure it all out later. "Tamlin Anor?" he repeated in a whisper, their name sounding very odd to the young wolf, but kind of something he would expect at the same time. Names are like make up words anyways.

"Camp"? That's the first time he heard that. "Ah, well, I-I'm just tired." Luno replied timidly, breaking his eye contact with Tamlin and stared on the ground with his hand running through the back of his neck. "Actually, have you seen a wolf pack pass by this area months ago? I'm following them south." Luno looked at the coydog again as soon as the question escaped his lips, wishing that he was indeed in the right path and wasn't aimlessly travelling for a whole month.
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POSTED: Sun Jun 16, 2019 4:21 pm

It appeared he was making some progress with the other fellow, something that gave him a bit of pride. He didn’t have the natural social graces of other canines, it was true; at least he could lead with his honesty. When Luno repeated his name, Tamlin smiled encouragingly. “It’s Caledonian,” he explained, though Luno hadn’t asked. He emphasized this with a shrug, as though there was no accounting for the traditional names of his homeland.

When the stranger spoke again, the Sunwarden’s brow furrowed. Ah, so that’s the issue. The man had been separated from his family. It was a relatable tragedy, and something that automatically engendered his sympathy. “There are a few packs here. I’ve yet to see any traveling.” Regret tinged his voice, wishing he had better news to offer the man. He may not be a Caledonian himself, but their problems appeared to be mighty similar to Tamlin. “I’m sorry. I wish I had better news.” A fidgeting hand tugged on his garnet hair, as though it might provoke a better thought, or somehow give him notice on where Luno’s family was. When it didn’t, he resolved to offer what he could instead.

“Do they go by a name? I travel often, I could keep a look out for you.” His tail, an unnaturally short stub of a thing, wagged gently at the offer. He felt unusually talkative, for he was a man more often prone to silences, but the gray wolf before him appeared to need assistance, and inexplicably that drove the Anor to speech. “Or if you need respite, you’re welcome to come to camp for a while.” If there was a part of him that thought to ask the High King first, it did not delay his offer—Iomair had shown only kindness to all before him, and Tamlin could never see him turning away the needy. As little as they had, there was still food and water, and dry land for a bed. Sometimes that was all that was required.

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Becky
Luperci

POSTED: Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:50 am

Luno gave a subtle nod in acknowledgement, accepting the little information he received. They've settled down in this place? the wolf lowered his head, furrowing his brows in suspicion, wondering what might be the reason for his pack to finally occupy a territory of their own. Luno however, doubted it, knowing all too well that his father wouldn't stay in a place if Lupercis like Tamlin are around the area. Other than that, Serre wasn't very accepting of other packs existing around him either, so he knew that as soon as they learned that they're not alone, they'll be gone in the next sunrise. The wolf dreaded that he was in the wrong place after all.

The follow-up question snapped him out of his thoughts, focusing his attention once more to the kind coydog before him. "A name?" he echoed, brows furrowing even more, searching his mind for possible answers that he could give, but it was too long ago that he cannot exactly recall. I'm an idiot! he cursed mentally. "I- uh, I don't think we have one." he replied with a unenthusiastic shake of his head, albeit uncertain if they didn't really have a name for their pack. Luno felt even more tired, fear enveloping him as the thoughts of not finding his pack again plagued his mind. He desperately clung to the little hope that he had on his search, but he felt more hopeless with every passing second. The young wolf sighed, trying his best to suppress the unwanted thoughts back in the depths of his mind. Luno doesn't want to look distressed nor weak to anyone, even if he's overwhelmed with his worries.

"Really?" he raised a brow at the given offer, completely oblivious as to what he might see in Tamlin's camp. "Thank you, Tamlin. I do need some rest, but I don't want to be an interference in your pack." he replied with a soft smile, seizing the opportunity to learn more about their ...world? Culture? He couldn't help but wonder. There are many things he has yet to know if they're true, and stories that he'd heard that wanted to be proved. "Alright, if you don't mind? Give me a moment." the wolf said as he took a step away from the tree proceeded to shift, shrinking back until his paws finally touched the ground. It took a few moments, but he now stood on four legs in his secui form, the scar on his shoulder more visible under the sunlight. He raised his head to meet Tamlin on the eye. "I'm ready."
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POSTED: Tue Jun 18, 2019 4:24 pm

ooc: Don't mind Tamlin's awkwardness! He tries his best! :D

His query had borne an unexpected effect: it had seemed a simple question to Tamlin Anor, but Luno seemed almost distraught by it. The Sunwarden had suspicion then that the pack Luno had come from was far different from Caledonian customs. So much could be made obvious just by the difference in garb; Luno wore no clothing, nor bore any weapons. Meanwhile, Tamlin was fully garbed, with wineskin and bow intact, and names for it all memorized. The turquoise-eyed man before him was a bit of a riddle, and Tamlin felt a sense of budding curiosity to look upon him. Nevertheless, he was eager to ease the discomfort of his newfound companion, and he quickly sought to do so, even if his words came a bit awkward in his haste. “Well… a name isn’t important! Don’t know… why I asked…” His display was ended with a lopsided smile, keen to move along.

The grin only stretched enthusiastically when Luno accepted his offer. In all honesty, he had assumed well-spoken members of their band would handle all Ambassadorship, and he felt a measure more competent to see that Luno was willing to come with. New Caledonia could use all the allies they could muster, and perhaps by reuniting Luno with his family, they would come into some new friends. “It wouldn’t be a bother at all! It’s hardly a pack, moreso a group of refugees.” Another shrug—he did not want to rise the stranger’s expectations, only to disappoint him with the scattering of tents that made their home. “Though that does give us experience in resting the weary.” He had expected then that they would be off, but paused when Luno requested privacy, disappearing behind the tree.

Tamlin’s head cocked to one side, a bit befuddled over what was happening, only to find Luno returned to him on four legs. Oh, came the thought, and a bit more understanding. No wonder Luno’s pack didn’t have a name! They seemed more like Woodsmoke, the feral woman he had met in the woods, who relied only on lupus form. Tamlin himself could not recall a time he had ever gone back to it, save for those who injured a leg and needed to use three good ones to get around. Even then, some of them had chosen instead to use crutches. Regardless, it wasn’t his place to judge Luno for the way he was raised, and so he merely greeted him once more with a nod of his head.

“It’s this way,” he mentioned, waiting for Luno to come alongside before he began to walk the direction back to camp. Knowing they had time before they arrived, he decided it might be useful to describe where they were going. “We’ve some tents at the base of Mount Oromocto. There are some who come and go from our camp, and others who stay there nightly. If we’re lucky, you might get to meet our High King, Iomair.” Realizing the name might sound oddly formal for a gathering of hasty shelters, he explained again. “He was our King in Caledonia, where we came from. War has driven us here, to ‘Soulsland.” He paused, waiting to see if Luno would have any interjections or questions.

WC: 540
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Becky
Luperci

POSTED: Thu Jun 20, 2019 1:39 pm

The wolf, now standing comfortably on his four, road-worn legs, bobbed his head once more and started following Tamlin at his side, matching the coydog's pace as he minded the gap between them, not wanting to bump into him if he ever slipped. Luno gave an attentive ear as Tamlin spoke about the camp from what he could understand located at the base of a mountain, which a foreigner like him couldn't immediately remember the name of. The more words Luno didn't understand the meaning of, the more confused his face became, which is natural for someone who have nothing but the knowledge he was bestowed upon during his time with his pack.

Luno opened his mouth as if to say something, and then snapped it shut to reconsider what he should say. After a few moments of silence, the wolf huffed to himself and decided to just say it. "I've been meaning to ask...what is a camp? And uh, this camp of yours?" he emphasized, the word having a feel of strangeness just like how he pronounced it the same as the stranger's name. "You said the Lupercis come by and leave this camp? Why? Is it because you moved from this Caledonia? What's so special about it?" came his barrage of questions, casting a sideways glance at Tamlin. "We moved a lot too, you know. That's what Pa wants. I guess he likes doing it." he continued, shrugging afterwards.
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POSTED: Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:06 pm

It seemed Luno had been biding his time until he felt comfortable to ask for further information, as like a dam shattered he too burst forth with queries in near stream of consciousness. Though he maintained his walk, there was no denying the growing fluster on the Sunwarden’s expression as Luno continued, and he found himself worried that he may not be able to recall all of the questions by the time he was done. A few times he opened his mouth to reply, only to find that Luno had discovered another subject to interrogate him on, and thus he shut it reflexively. When it seemed at last that he had finished (and Tamlin waited a few extra moments to be sure) he had to focus to remember what had been the first question asked.

“You’ve never… heard of a camp?” He asked, bewildered, wondering how exactly it was that Luno was raised. He hadn’t detected an accent to determine if perhaps High Speech was newly learned to his companion, but one could never be sure. “You know… when you’re traveling, so you don’t have… uh, a more elaborate shelter.” He glanced up at the trees, brow furrowed as he thought how best to explain. “Have you seen Luperci make homes, either from wood or abandoned shelters?” He meant, of course, the concrete monoliths the humans had developed prior to their extinction. “A camp is like that, but constructed more quickly. So tents made from fabric, or tree branches.” His emerald-lined golden eyes turned back to Luno curiously. “Is that… how your family sleeps? When they need to protect themselves from the weather?”

He hadn’t been quite sure whether Luno was asking whether Caledonia or their new camp was special, but he did his best to expand on the subject regardless. “We lived in a large Kingdom. Vast and beautiful. We lost the war and sought a new home, which is why we came here, to ‘Soulsland.” He spread his hands out to indicate the vastness of the Nova Scotia territory. “We survivors stay together because we are like family,” He chose the word intentionally, for he felt this sort of bond was one that Luno would understand, considering his goal. “Our hope is to build a new home here, rather than keep moving.” He ran through their conversation in his mind again, hoping that he had answered all that Luno had asked, before deciding to ask his own. “Is your father going somewhere? Or does he just go anywhere?” It seemed an odd thing for the Patriarch to do—keep going when he had left his son behind, but there was much he didn’t understand yet about Luno.

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Becky
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Northern Tides