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Bowl the barrels bumblingly

Wed Apr 04, 2018 7:39 pm

Now that she had hands, she could work.

Merari was not a particularly ambitious sort of child, but she enjoyed labor more than its fruits. Cutting a sheep from the flock, twisting chicken necks, prying stones and caked mud from hooves -- these mundane tasks, maybe part of some greater good, she nevertheless found pleasing. There was a rhythm to it, and a way to anchor her body and mind and soul to the tangible. Things needed doing here and now. She was made for practical tasks more than the dreams and planning her brother leaned toward.

Only in a faint way did she desire praise or improvement. Flexible, she cared not if she failed at most things: but from the focus on her youthful, pointed face and the grumbling under her breath it was obvious the task at hand was important to her in some sense.

The axe's stone wedge came down, thwack! and a skinny branch dropped inches to the dirt. She dipped to seize it in big hands, then tossed it aside for kindling. The next branch along the fallen log was thicker, and maybe that would suit some purpose. That was up to Daddy to decide. She just had to cut it off for him.

She swung her arms back, a little clumsily, and struck.

Re: Bowl the barrels bumblingly

Wed Apr 04, 2018 7:57 pm

Salvador suspected that behind his back, his clanmates struggled with how to interpret him. Such was reasonable, considering how detached he maintained himself from the others, always at the ready to up and away as he so often did. He did not need sentimental attachments to survive; he needed food and water, and a space safe enough to sleep at least a few hours at a time. Alone.

He observed more than they could give him credit. It was his survival instinct at work—the more knowledge and experience collected, the less likely he would be to take a knife to the back and not see it coming. Inferni was much younger then the fire-clan of his youth, that which had been shrouded in rumors and mystery as if some supernatural guardian (as racist as its members at the time) curled its wiry fingers about the land dared outsiders to stray near. Its claws clipped and its fangs chipped away, the Inferni of the present was a tame, uncertain thing, its young members paving their paths just as the pack itself forged itself a home out of the old, ashen mountains.

Sally didn’t mind it. He found their struggles charming. He found their conflict with the territory dogs a trite and funny thing, painfully convenient given their stroke of luck. He found their famine funnier, as if the and itself sought to test their worth. He found it all funny, for it was the only emotion he could feel about it.

He saw a young woman and at once knew it to be Merari, for he had observed enough to know it was around that time she would take to two legs and blossom like her brother. Though, given the stress of their environment, he’d expected it sooner. “Well, look at you! Two legs and already working,” he said, grinning around his cigarette, and catching the axe in her hands when it swung back next. “Hell of a lot taller than I thought you’d end up. How’s it feel, Tirones?”

Re: Bowl the barrels bumblingly

Mon Apr 09, 2018 10:24 pm

A rough voice teased her, and hands caught the axe’s shaft when she swung it over her shoulder. Merari spun with a sardonic grin already on her lips, wrenching her tool back and embedding it in the dirt at her feet. Lifting a hand, she swept dark bangs aside and looked up at him: Salvador, a handsome older man with dark fur and a tobacco scent.

“Feels good,” she said, and stretched her arms, swinging one across her chest and enjoying the pain-turned-relief. Her mischievous grin, a chiefly coyote expression, slanted harsher across her narrow muzzle. “Gonna be taller ‘n you when I’m finished, I reckon.”

She shook out her hands then pried the axe back from the earth, giving the branch another chop. “Daddy needs wood for the village project,” she said. Another might have rambled on: what did Salvador think of the plans, was he excited to see a watchtower sprout up, or the foundation of a kitchen laid down – but Rari ended it at that.

Things needed done. She was glad to do them.

It was a simple life, but she liked that.

“What about you, workin’ real hard?” she added, transparent in her teasing. She let her tongue loll in a pant as she brought the axe back up.

Re: Bowl the barrels bumblingly

Thu Apr 19, 2018 8:58 am

Two-legged, Merari was as graceless as her father. It hardly came as a surprise to Salvador, given how she had grown up balanced between a young but tragedy-touched Nazario and the charming little knave that was Boone. In a way, it was relieving to see the type of person Merari was shaping out to be, for he’d questioned the possibility for another cycle of mother versus daughter, just as Vicira and Vesper had done. Now, he doubted that would be the case.

“You want to put a wager on that bet?” he asked, grinning, a flash in the eyes evidence that he was not entirely kidding.

She reminded him of Annabeth a little, albeit not as punchy or rough around the edges. He welcomed the sight. Inferni needed a few more punchy women to keep its coyotes in line.

“Working? Me? Nah, he scoffed, and unabashedly so. “I’m running up and down mountains to keep you fed half the time. If I’m here, I’m on break.”

Break, for as much as he could take a break. Any moment he was not finding and bringing back something to eat was a moment someone in their pack was inevitably wasting away. He was not a guiltless man for it. This move was a mistake. Sally grinned his scars and swallowed the concerns.

“Good for you for helping your pop, but hey, you’ve got pretty bad form.” He tapped a fist above the small of her back. “Keep your back straight as much as you can. Let the axe coming down do most of the work for you, else you’ll tucker out too fast.” Or throw out your back. Sally wished that experience on no one. “Helps to cut going with the lines, too. Go on, try it.”

Re: Bowl the barrels bumblingly

Mon Apr 30, 2018 5:08 pm

His smile stretched small scars, and mischief lit his red eyes. She liked that and the grit of his voice, and pressed her luck leaning on the axe handle, demonstrating only teenage lankiness and ropy little arms. “Sure,” she said, this drawled and drawn out like “shore,” and racked her brain for a fitting wager. “You gotta make me an apprentice in somethin’, if I’m taller ‘n you.” She could ask for meaningless things, but Merari really wanted knowledge, experience.

“And not teach my brother,” she added, less maturely.

Salvador explained he was taking a reprieve from hunting, and Merari took up the axe with a thoughtful nod. It was all anyone did half the time; she chased chipmunks in the woods when she crossed paths with them, herself not missing up any chance for sustenance. Luckily, things seemed to be getting better as the season turned, but she had survived too much hunger to take this for granted.

She flushed when he tapped her back, and adjusted her posture. Her foot kicked over the branch she was working on, then planted on one of the offshoots. “Where’s the line here, when I just gotta get it off?” she asked, then did as he said and let gravity work for her. It made her nervous, not using her own force to throw the sharp head down, but yeah, he was right – less tiring.

Stone severed the limb, and she whistled and struck for another.

Re: Bowl the barrels bumblingly

Thu May 03, 2018 7:26 am

“An apprentice for you and you alone, huh,” he considered, then shrugged. “Sure. And if I win, next time I go out hunting, you’re coming and carrying it all back. Better start gaining muscle now, you'll need it.”

It wasn’t much of a wager, but what good to him was a still-blossoming child? He didn’t have the heart or desire to actually swindle her, and would have gladly shown her the ropes for something had she asked regardless. But spring had arrived, and its creatures were made visible and bold by the warm weather. A doe would feed several, at least a little, but the thought of carrying it across those damned mountains made his shoulders ache.

"What is it you're wanting to learn from me?" he asked.

His advice paid off, and she struggled less with the labor once she visibly relaxed and allowed the axe to carry the weight. “Eh, don’t worry about the lines on those little twigs.” Sally gestured up into the trees. “If you start cutting those bigger limbs, though, cut lengthwise. That’s all. Looks like you got it, either way.”

The Sadira rolled his shoulders, yawned, and looked for a place to lie down. “So, did your dad put you up to this or something? Trying to impress Mom?”

Re: Bowl the barrels bumblingly

Tue May 22, 2018 3:04 pm

“Then I’ll be broader ‘n’ you ‘swell as tall,” Merari joked when he placed his own demands. She paused to consider his question, taking a reprieve from swinging the axe to rub at a sore spot on her back. “I dunno. You know a lot, don’t you? What do you wanna teach?”

People liked to talk about what they were good at, in Rari’s limited experience. They were proud and happy to guide others. Her father was like that, and her mother – though Rari yawned through her history lessons – and even her grandmother got a light in her eyes again when she talked about her birds.

Her blue eyes flashed up to the thick trunks, but she nodded to show she understood. She kept chopping at the smaller branches while Salvador searched for a patch of earth to settle.

“No one put me up to it,” the girl said a little tartly. “I don’t need to impress my mom. I mean, maybe my dad a little bit. I do want to be a good worker.” She winced as poor aim sent the stone edge into the soil, and she tugged it free. “There’s just lots of little things that need done. And a lot of people like to talk and plan but not actually do any of it.”

Re: Bowl the barrels bumblingly

Wed Jun 13, 2018 8:25 am

What had he to teach? Very little, subjectively. Sally could power his way through a fistfight and worm around swinging blades and flinging arrows well enough, though his imperfection therein was made obvious by the permanent slicks of lost fur and carved skin scattered across his person. He knew horses well enough, he supposed, but Merari was better off learning from her mother on that front. What else was there? Hunting? Fishing? The unwitting and impersonal technique in full mental detachment from trauma and grief?

Maybe someday. Around here, maybe she’d need it. At this Salvador scoffed and said instead, “Hell, I don’t know. We’ll build a fence or something.”

He stretched out underneath one of many crooked trees with small, fresh branches born of the ashes of a long-ago flame. He listened to her speak and digested it a moment, his eyes through the branches. “There are two kinds of people out there. Thinkers and doers. They’d be lost without each other, I think.”

“It’s hard to be both—lot of pressure, probably. Your mother is. You might be too.” Sally was not convinced she dismissed the idea of impressing her mother and her mother’s station. After all, Vicira had succeeded Vesper. Even despite her age, surely Merari had given the idea some thought. “Have you given any thought to things you want to learn?”

Re: Bowl the barrels bumblingly

Fri Jun 15, 2018 3:57 am

Building a fence sounded good. Childish despite her work ethic and habits, Merari couldn't help the grin that spread across her face even as she focused downward. The stone head of the axe came out of the earth easily enough after her miss, and she scraped it along the grass to remove the worst of the soil that clumped to it. After that, another swing, and a toss of her head to move her hair out of her eyes. She ought to put it up, she thought.

Salvador talked about thinkers and doers, drawing comparisons between Merari and Vicira. Though she did not initially protest, Merari frowned slightly, then shrugged. I think I'm more of a doer. I don't wanna be the one to make big decisions. She did place brief thought about things like leadership and succession, but Boone had more than enough ambition. Rari did not, and she was okay with that. Maybe in time she would be her brother's right hand; maybe Vicira would not relinquish her position until their own kids might be ready to lead.

I guess I wanna learn a little of everything, Merari replied. I like the work my dad does. Building things. And I like the livestock too, the pigs especially. They're smarter critters than anyone gives 'em credit for. She would make a good Mercatura or Fera, but Rari knew she wasn't limited to either specialty, that her rank could change with her whims.

I don't mind wrapping this up/fading it out. <3

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