[M] Sonder

p. Clover/Vesper

POSTED: Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:39 pm

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choking on the dust, drinking in the sun

Summer sunshine by the lake, hazy, lazy days, the hum of bees and flies, watching dragonflies dance and fuck. And now, too, the wolf bastards were dead. What a life.

Twelve had returned to form, how she had felt when she had first arrived here. Even better now, that the threat was gone and the coyotes could live their simple little lives in peace, at least until the next shit-sandwich was served to them. She had found and claimed a little dilapidated cabin for herself; it smelled of swamp and mold, but it was dry; if she put some sweat equity into it, it could even keep her warm in the winters. But that could wait, for now, she relished the day.

Earlier on, she had met up with John; she enjoyed his company immensely, and she had begun calling him Espejo. Twelve wasn’t sure if he knew what the word meant, if he did, he was keeping quiet about it, which was fine by her. It was the gentlest, most meaningful nickname she had given any of these fools so far.

After a bit of fun under the shade of a tree, John and Twelve had fallen asleep for a mid-day nap. It hadn’t lasted long for her, as the sun managed to pry its way in behind her eye-lids. With a soft groan, she sat up, and then noticed two birds splashing near the edge of the water. Crows, no, ravens; she had seen them before, they seemed to like to hang out with the big bitch and her scarred frail friend. She had yet to meet them, but it seemed many in the Gang seemed to revere them; she wondered why.

Rubbing the crusted snot away from her nose, Twelve slowly stood and then walked to the edge of the lake, letting her feet get wet. The crisp cool water woke her up, and she shifted her slate eyes to look at the birds. One still was having a fun time with its bath, the other stared up at her with beady, almost intelligent eyes. She turned her head to the side curiously, Da fuck you want? She said softly, her voice still clutched in the grip of sleep.

The bird just kept staring, and completely uncaring that this coyote woman was so close; they must be pets. Twelve crouched down and reached out a pair of fingers tipped with curved claws, she rubbed them together, Here, birdy, birdy. She said, a grin on her face at the absurdity of it.

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POSTED: Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:11 am

(468)

Tumbleweeds of shed dog hair drifted on the wind.

With the threat eradicated and the lull of peace over them—short-lived as she believed it might be, cynical as she was—Clover had finally managed to get clean. The skinny coyote Resurrection had been the one to offer in the end, and his claws had scrubbed down to her skin and picked through her mats. Many remained, hanging off her ears and in the fluff of her hindquarters, but now clean, most of her freed undercoat finally took its cue from the weather and floated away.

She felt a thousand times less miserable now, though when the noontime sun burned overhead, she still felt the call to drink from the lake.

While her superficial wounds and bruises were mostly healed from the wolves' assault, the grey dog's gait remained slow and careful. She walked along the shoreline, taking in the scenery after she drank her fill, and found Vesper along the way. The old coyote looked a lot better, too: still skinny, still scarred and silvered, but her eyes were bright and there was a quickness to her step that hadn't been there before.

They chatted as they walked, disparaging the cabins and towns, conspiring to build a den together or just sleep beneath the stars like they were. Clover tried hard not to think about her room with Jehan and Cartier in the mansion, her nest of pelts; Vesper likewise steered thoughts clear of the schoolhouse. It was better this way.

A bold quork sounded over the lake, and Clover could barely make out the raspy-robotic voice of a raven shouting indignantly, "Am boss bird!"

"Stormeye found someone," laughed Vesper.

"They climb on me when I sleep and peck tufts of my fur out," Clover complained as she spotted the dark shapes of the ravens ahead: a smaller one splashing contentedly in the shallows while Stormeye strutted out of reach of a crouched figure.

Instinctively, she lowered her head and stared with suspicion; it was hard to get used to being in a pack again, where one inherently trusted all those within its borders. As they came closer, though, she recognized the figure, if only for her terrible scarring—reminiscent of Vesper, in a way, as were her pale eyes. Clover pricked her ears curiously, her tail beginning to wave behind her.

"You need it," replied Ves, squinting at an errant tuft of nearly-shed fur on Clover's flank, before she glanced forward at the other woman. "Hey," she greeted. "Seen you around a lot—you're Twelve, right?" Her small paws came to a standstill, and her scarred brow quirked as she looked over the female's face, her cropped ears and the ruddy splash on her slim, snot-speckled muzzle.

I can feel the thunder that's breaking in your heart
I can see through the scars inside you
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POSTED: Thu Jun 20, 2019 8:56 pm

choking on the dust, drinking in the sun

She hadn’t expected the bird to talk, but it did. Not just talk, but scream at her, in the way only a raven could. Twelve reeled back at a bit, What the fuck! She said, startled. She knew animals could talk, in fact, she had seen plenty in New York who could (her favorite had been a monkey; that was interesting); but a raven?

She sighed, once she had overcome the initial shock, Yeah? She said, in response, then leaned down and pointed a threatening finger at the feathered creature, Well, I’m boss Twelve. You get that bird-brain? Twelve… remember the name.

Before she could continue rhyming (what the fuck was wrong with her?) the Big Bitch and her friend showed up. Of course, to be expected she supposed; the birds were theirs after-all. The old skinny one came to stop in front of her, greeting her. Twelve was no fool, she saw the way the woman stood; it spoke of a past. The larger dog was did not have as much of a presence, almost like she was a body guard to the scarred coyote.

Twelve looked them both over for a moment, then crossed her arms, Yeah, that’s me. Sorry, don’t know your names. She said, then, turning, These feathery fucks yours? This one has a mouth to it. She said, gesturing to the one who had spoken, Neat trick. She said with a sneer. Regardless, she was impressed, and kind of jealous. Wouldn't it be something if she could actually speak to horses; that would make her life that much more easy.

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POSTED: Fri Jun 21, 2019 11:27 am

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A throaty coughing erupted from the raven's shaggy throat, her clouded eye blinking smugly at the startled coyote before a finger was levelled in her direction. Stormeye ruffled up her feathers and croaked reproachfully. "Not-boss T'elve."

When Vesper padded closer, the iridescent bird hopped over and clambered onto her shoulders, wings flapping briefly for balance as the skinny old coyote steadied herself. "Boss," she announced.

A smirk curled up one side of Vesper's mouth, and she rolled her eyes. "I wish I could say I taught them that. They're clever, ravens." Stormeye preened until Vesper gave her body a shake, dislodging the creature; they were large birds, and she didn't have as much strength in her shoulders as she used to. "I'm Vesper." Her half-smile faded, and she studied the other scarred woman curiously—not expectant of recognition, but still wondering if certain tales had spread even to these newcomers.

"Clover," the shaggy dog said. She was less studying so much as staring, taking in the similarities and stark differences between the two females.

"You were part of the Posse, huh?" continued Vesper, sitting down. She craned her neck down to give her bad leg a testing nibble, until Clover huffed, her cheeks blown out with the admonishing sound. Ves ignored her. "What do you think of all this?"

I can feel the thunder that's breaking in your heart
I can see through the scars inside you
Del Cenere Gang
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oderint dum metuant You have to love yourself a fire
cave canem
unconditional loyalty

POSTED: Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:55 pm

choking on the dust, drinking in the sun

The raven was incredulous; Twelve raised a brow at it as it declared she was not a boss, but the other scarred woman was. How nice it must be to feel so powerful as a lesser creature, just because it had decided to tag along with the dominant species. That would probably be its downfall.

Crossing her arms, she nodded at each woman in turn as they gave their names; she had heard the names before but hadn’t tied them to the two, now she knew. The light colored eyes of the older woman studied her, and the other brazenly stared; Twelve had absolutely no qualms with their curiosity. She had always been stared at like this when she met new people, it was hard to ignore her scarred exterior, one that she seemed to share with the mottled Vesper.

At the question, she nodded again, Guess so, She said, before turning to the side to spit, They kind of took me in without much care about my feelings on the matter. It was better than the alternative. She said, since, the alternative had been certain death out in the wilds. Twelve still couldn’t quite believe or understand exactly why they had decided to save her, but she supposed she was grateful for it.

At the next question, she cocked her head to the side, a phantom ear raised towards the sky, Doesn’t really matter what I think. She started, but then took the chance to voice her opinion, Guess there’s safety in numbers, safety in a claimed piece of land. For now, we can enjoy it… I’m sure, with time, it might cause more problems than it solved.

Twelve had seen gangs in New York grow too large for their britches, think they were safe and strong and in charge only because they had the most teeth, the most money, the most claim. But she had never seen it end well, for any of them. Gangs, families, mafias, packs, clans, even kingdoms; they all rose and fell like the tides. Nothing was ever permanent, no one was safe.

Pulling herself away from her thoughts, she grinned at the pair, And what about you? Ya know you two have a bit of a reputation here, one I don’t really understand. What’s your story?

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POSTED: Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:15 pm

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Vesper uttered a dry laugh, squinting in understanding. "That's how I came into clan life too, now that I think about it."

Clover pricked her ears at the high, gravelly sound of the thin woman's voice, then sat down and began to scratch absentmindedly at her cheek with a hind paw, the motion slow and almost contemplative as her nails raked the soot-stained jaw. The way her neck craned to meet her foot exposed more ugly, scarred flesh, though most of her scars were hidden beneath layers of ash-colored fur.

It was odd, finding fault in her flaws, and yet feeling like there weren't enough of them. She was very quiet when Twelve shot a crooked, yellow-toothed grin in their direction and asked about their history. She didn't feel like it was her place to speak.

"Well, that starts and ends with Inferni. The clan was around for a decade and a half, and I led it for a few of those years. Don't ask me if I did a good job, because I don't fucking know." She ignored Clover's frown and rolled her eyes away from the dog, as if to preemptively stifle her protest. "Boone and Rio are my grandkids, young enough they don't know the answer either, much as they might like to pretend they do." Fed opinions by their parents and kin, witness to the clan's period of starvation in the wake of that horrible war, they knew nothing about what Inferni once was.

"Long story short, Inferni was crippled in a war, limped over to the burned lands, and died. Clover and I are just two of what's left."

The dog stopped scratching and lowered her gaze to her paws. "It's more than that."

"Other than a handful of the Cartel kids, who even knows that?" Vesper pointed out, quirking her scarred brow. "It's not important anymore."

Clover huffed, then looked up at Twelve. "What about you?"

I can feel the thunder that's breaking in your heart
I can see through the scars inside you
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oderint dum metuant You have to love yourself a fire
cave canem
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POSTED: Wed Jul 03, 2019 11:42 am

choking on the dust, drinking in the sun

Twelve grinned at Veper’s dry laugh, at least she wasn’t the only one to be wrangled into a group. Maybe that’s just how things were done around here; strange, but efficient she supposed.

The big girl seemed preoccupied with an itch, or perhaps she was uncomfortable with the subject at hand. No matter, the older woman seemed unperturbed and was quick to answer.

Apparently she had led a clan named Inferni (ah, there was that word again), a long lived clan (Twelve guessed, a decade seemed like a long time… that was a lifetime for most at least); but after a war, it disbanded. She also revealed she was Boone and Rio’s grandmamma, which explained why many of the members of the Gang seemed to revere her; she was the matriarch.

Well, She said after Vesper was finished, That’s the tits, Grandma. Everything eventually falls apart, I hope you don’t feel too badly about it it. She said, her eyes looking pointedly at Clover.

She shrugged then, Originally I come from the swamps to the south, the Devil’s butt hole they call Florida. All hot, big ass bugs, giant lizards with teeth. She pulled her lips over her gums to reveal her own and made a mime of an alligator, before dropping her arms again, Then spent some time in New York, got tired of all the Luperci, didn’t have enough space to breathe. Now I’m here.

She shrugged again, Ma told me my family used to be free up in these parts, but she always had a way of weaving the truth with fantasy; she was a little dull in the head. I didn’t have anywhere better to go, so might as well check it out. It’s not so bad here, though you yokels sure have an interesting way of life. She stuck a claw into her mouth to pick at some stuck food in her teeth.

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POSTED: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:33 pm

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Vesper smirked at the scarred girl's turn of phrase, then shrugged her shoulder (a feat Ves had mastered despite her typical form) when Twelve stated everything fell apart. Whether she agreed with this sentiment or not, Clover couldn't tell, but a frown hung on her own lips as the light blue eyes turned her way. She wanted to be more optimistic than that, but after everything that had happened, how could she?

"Lot of it was out of our hands," she confessed, and Vesper sighed.

Twelve described the swamplands of the south and its otherwordly denizens, and Clover shuddered at the thought (and memory) of buzzing insects. The woman was succinct like Vesper, though the way she mentioned her family being free made Vesper's scarred brow shoot up like the phrase meant something to her.

"Better than bein' with wolves, anyway," Clover agreed, giving her ear another kick.

Vesper shifted her weight so she was more comfortable, her pale eyes studying Twelve. Though a blue sheen covered the pupil with age, they were still keen eyes, and sought details Clover wouldn't think to look for, centering on the bridge of her muzzle.

"Might be a grain of truth to having family around here," Ves said casually. "What'd your mom tell you about them?"

I can feel the thunder that's breaking in your heart
I can see through the scars inside you
Del Cenere Gang
El Probado
User avatar
Raze
oderint dum metuant You have to love yourself a fire
cave canem
unconditional loyalty

POSTED: Sat Jul 13, 2019 5:52 pm

choking on the dust, drinking in the sun

Clover seemed reluctant to share Vesper’s sentiment on the whole war thing; but she was young, younger than Vesper at least, maybe she had some hope and honor still. Those things seemed to have been stripped away from Twelve and Grandma, and so they seemed to have a rapport there.

Twelve squatted down to their level; it had been some time since she had changed into her four legged form; quite some time in fact. But seeing the two of them move about the natural way so comfortably made her miss it. It was the form of her childhood, the happy parts of her childhood anyway, if they could be called that. She’d have to find some secluded place in the next few days to shift in private, where no one could hear her scream.

Vesper’s question about her mother caused her raise a brow quizzically, Uh… only that they were free. She wondered why the question had been asked, but figured she’d humor the woman, Not much, it was hard to piece together exactly what she meant sometimes. She scratched at her chin, Sometimes it was her side of the family that was up here, used to be owned by humans and used for herding sheep. Sometimes it was my father’s side, running like wild beasts in the forests until the Fall.

These were the stories from her childhood, the fairy tales, the legends meant to give hope and peace to the children of slaves. Perhaps that was why she had come here, chasing after a dream…

A sharp pain in her thigh suddenly alerted her to the fact that the raven had walked over and pecked out a tuft of her fur, Hey! You little shit! She said, swatting it away. Angry now, she stood again and crossed her arms, I don’t got any names Grandma. Just the ravings of an old woman who had too many children. She turned and spat, I guess… if it’s true…. I’ll know them when I see them. She highly doubted it.

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