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Wed Feb 07, 2018 7:48 pm
|WARNING: This thread contains material exceeding the general board rating of PG-13. It may contain very strong language, drug usage, graphic violence, or graphic sexual content. Reader discretion is advised.|
The winter was hard and lean, as she had found herself wont to grow, like the bow of juniper in harsh winds that stripped the bark and needles bare. The cold made her shoulder ache something deep, but otherwise the thick plush of northern coat didn't care much for the way sleet so chose to clung to her in the short and dwindling hours of day, merely casting her in soft dappled flakes like stardust. Briarblack was quiet these days.
She hadn't the heart to face anyone it seemed; though she tried to learn, to practice her stitching when her arrow fletching grew sloppy with the dizzying twist of alcohol and the way her fingers grew clumsy with the healing of wartime wounds. Her claws still trembled in her right arm somewhat, and when used in certain manners, the muscle twanged like old metal chords with pain and prompted her to drop whatever she so chose to try and work on.
Tongue pressed and rolled against the cigarette between her teeth, turning it over somewhat as her brow narrowed in concentration, eyes weary and straining against the grey-blue haze of dying winter daylight as she worked to stitch together pieces of leather with a suture for practice, sloppy and a little hasty when the chill threatened to nip at the joints of her knuckles, and her tongue clicked sharp on the roof of her mouth when she tried to admire her handiwork and found it lacking, only for her to trim the thread and start again with a distinctly tired expression.
Halfway through her set, she set aside the needle in favor of the bottle at her side, quickly removing her cigarette for a swig only to replace it thereafter and get back to work.
Fri Feb 09, 2018 11:45 am
There were countless ways to cope with pain, some healthy, some destructive -- and Clover teetered on the line, pushing herself to the limit when she hunted and patrolled, breaking things she found at the city's outskirts. But there was one line she would never cross. Her young life had been destroyed by drugs and alcohol, and the stink on the city dogs brought back those memories clear as day. She didn't have to reach quite as far back to recall Jehan, swaying and cloudy-eyed, so unable to contront his own troubles that he dulled himself to thoughts and emotions as an escape.
It was cowardice. She abhorred it.
When she smelled tobacco and alcohol on the wind, under an early-dark sky, Clover marched toward the source. She stopped a yard away from Briarblack, watching her take a swig and push a bone needle back into a leather piece, and scowled.
Clover did not know the girl well -- just that she was Vesper's niece, and a scout turned healer in the wake of the war. That was enough to justify her actions to herself.
She stomped closer and snatched up the bottle by its neck, then reached forward to bat the cigarette out of Briarblack's mouth.
The fuck you think you're doin'? she snarled, getting into the girl's face.
Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:49 pm
The ache and burn of smoke on her tongue and into her chest had lessened with frequent abuses; each pull, each drag, each puff or swig dulled and numbed her senses, brought her to focus, though soft and clumsily strung swears tripped off her tongue with each fumbled pass of the needle through leather that pricked into her thumb or each time her fingers slipped and sent a pang of healing nerves sparking up her arm to that damnable shoulder, only for her to shake out the pins in her fingertips and return to stitching.
Briarblack hardly heard the woman approaching, focused as she was, and was only made aware at the sloshing of alcohol when the bottle had been snapped up. She looked up with wintery eyes only in time for that cigarette to be smacked clean from between her teeth, and that befuddled expression clouded with ire which only stormed as the outsider crept overly close into her space, bared teeth and fiery.
Rather than apologize, Briarblack let loose a compromised breath on the wobbly shake of a growl herself, bristling by response and twitching her lips up to mirror the dog right back. Fingers curled harsh into the leather as winter-sky eyes stared, through that fog, at the source of such confrontation; she craned forward on her seat.
"Practicing," she hissed between pointed teeth and rough breath that tasted of tobacco and whiskey. "Why does it matter to you?"
Hands pushed aside that stitched leather and she pushed up onto her alcohol-weakened legs and straightened her posture, itching to test her liquid courage.
Mon Feb 12, 2018 7:30 pm
Realization came slowly to the addled coywolf, but teeth flashed against her dark muzzle and hot, stinking air hissed past them. She growled and staggered to her feet with all the balance of a landlubber on roiling sea, challenging Clover.
It matters to me because those fuckin' sloppy stitches could be going into my flesh someday, the dog retorted. She hoisted the bottle out of reach in case Briar prioritized retrieving this over fighting, but she was ready for an altercation either way. Fuckin' pathetic, she spat, pointing at the mess of sinew suture that marred the leather. Jagged lines barely connected the pieces come undone.
Clover's brows connected with disdain. You're better off without this stuff, trust me, she said, and made to cast the bottle aside. Maybe the clan would be able to use it, to trade it, since they had precious little else -- but she didn't care. She wanted this poison out of the other coyotes' hands too.
Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:37 pm
Pale hands reached out for the glass of the bottle only for Clover to yank it away unceremoniously, repelled by the coywolf's attempt as she spat vitrol to the dark-pelted mourner, doubting and wallowing. Pathetic was right, though the sour twist of her guts clenched about her pain like gripping onto thorny brambles, and the dog's fingers jabbed towards her haphazard handiwork, drawing Briarblack's attention with it, and her expression fell a moment. It was awful, not even remotely passable; tethered threads frayed and came unwoven and lips curled back up and shaking like the breath that hissed its way out of her now as she stooped to clutch onto that leather, lifting it up again as it was so easily discarded. Wintery eyes returned to Clover and her bottle, and she thought to speak, but a strangled sound came out instead. That arm cocked back.
"Wait-- no-" she interjected on a small and broken note, halfway through the phrase the bottle was sailing, turning end over end and spilling its contents through the snow. There was a yowling wail of a sound at Clover's decision, her lack of consideration; and the bottle cracked onto the ice, but did not splinter.
"Why!" her accusation was clear as blue eyes shot back to the dog, her hands raised up and the heels of her palms planted clumsily on the dog, throwing her weight into a bodily shove. "Why, why! Who made you my guardian, my savior! Who asked you, gave you authority over my decisions?"
Her body was a dark and rigid line, stance wide, as she bristled and chuffed and rumbled her growling words, thick and caustic and heavy as stone.
Thu Feb 22, 2018 2:01 pm
The dark girl looked almost ashamed when Clover pointed out her terrible stitching, the jagged lines of a sloppy drunk. Her voice yipped out in protest when Clover flung the bottle, and it shattered into a yowl that shot disgust down into Clover's stomach.
Why? Listen to yourself, bitch! She spat the word out as the lithe coyote shoved her -- or attempted to. The bigger dog rocked back on a heel and took a step, but she returned the shove with stronger hands, hopping to throw the compromised Briar off her feet and down among her practice pieces. It wouldn't be hard, she reasoned, with the way she already wobbled. Screamin' like a fuckin' baby because I threw that poison away. You need help! Her voice came more strangled at this, and more than anger burned in her chestnut eyes. But if you wanna fucking kill yourself there are faster ways to go about it!
She was suddenly yelling at more than just Briarblack: she was yelling at Jehan and Cartier and Vesper and a thousand others who wallowed and wasted away, with or without a bottle in hand. She snarled in threat.
Mon Mar 12, 2018 9:52 pm
You need help.
The phrase struck her square in the gut, and groggy, unfocused eyes stared, beading with moisture and bleary at the dog who swore at her, dragged from her grief these flaws and pushed her back, sending Briarblack sprawling into damp and loose earth and decayed leaves. The dark girl pushed up on her palms. Clover's voice climbed, and the more it did so, the further back small, wolfish ears ticked - the rage in the dog struck a fearful chord in her heart, and a pink tongue darted out against her nose and dark lips, tight-lipped as she tried to reign in her wounded emotions.
There was a mirrored hurt there, and Briarblack hung her head shamefully at bared-teeth snarls, and she breathed out small and wounded whines, wanting to be angry, wanting to be ruthless. Her breath burst from her in a sharp and gasping sound as she pushed up and onto her feet again, debris clinging to her dark coat as fingers scrubbed along her snout. There was an attempt to harden icy winter eyes as she crowded into the dog's space again, her pride deflated and unable to meet the gaze for long.
"Then, then-- do it," she spoke in a low tone, her voice hoarse and rough. "Help me."
Thu Mar 29, 2018 4:38 pm