Through the looking glass we see she's painfully returned

P. Inca

POSTED: Fri Jul 27, 2018 12:44 am

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Set near an old, mossy brick wall in an old courtyard somewhere in the Seabreeze Brink.

She wasn't out to hunt like she normally was and she had stolen away from the court as if she'd had a secret that she wanted no one to know about. That was how felt, in some retrospect. Dreyma had seemingly known that something was wrong with Alouette the span of the last few months. She couldn't just act like everything was fixed now that she had moved passed things, now that she had made up with Inca to some extent, now that she had learned in some small ways what it meant to be a girl of her age and how to have fun once more with the absence of her self-imposed innocence. The woods were her safe haven and she often ran when she had nothing else to do, to make up for the lost hours she spent trapped in her head.

Today was different, though, for she had a companion alongside her, a familiar face that wasn't quite as fiendish as she had grown to imagine, and she wasn't in four legged form as she preferred on a normal basis, as feral as she was often times due to her connections with her father and Dreyma back in the Court. Time was what she needed and for him to offer her that time instead of rushing into things as the two had done the first few times they'd met one another, especially so soon after they'd met one another, had been beneficial to her state of mind.

She was clothed as lightly as she possibly could have been, marginally humanized but not without its feral touches, but as differently as she could have been in the most recent times they'd met. She hadn't chosen a dress this time, sticking with the thin, holey shirt she had worn only a few days before, a pair of shorts that had obviously taken a painstakingly amount of time to craft. They were easy to move in and made it easier yet to weave around the tree that Inca was chasing her about, leaving her a bubbly, giggling mess as she feigned a movement one way but took the other to tease in him this little game of tag, of theirs.

They stood in the midst of an old courtyard, overgrown by trees and bushes and shrubbery of all kinds. Old cement, far too battered and pushed up to be of use these days, stood stark against the opaque background, a rigid wall that Alouette settled back against, her breaths labored from the effort of running away from him. "I thought you were supposed to be chasing me," she taunted and teased.

Alouette Moineau



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POSTED: Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:01 am

Inca panted audibly as he rested for a moment, hands against his knees while leaning forward, recovering from the spirited game that he had found himself playing with Alouette. His eyes still stayed on the girl, fixated upon the other Luperci that he'd just taken a break from chasing around the old courtyard. ”Well, you sounded like you could use a break.” Inca teased right back, the tone of his voice playful, rather than the serious note of someone really claiming that she'd been the one to need a rest.

He wore as little to their latest meeting as he had the last time they'd met, Inca not skilled at all with making clothes, and really only owning his crude deer hide cloak. It had only taken a few moments for the cloak to be discarded somewhere in the courtyard, the cloak more of a hindrance than help in the middle of their game of tag. That haste would almost certainly come back to haunt him, when it came time to find his cloak, but for the moment it was as far from his mind as was possible.

More of the hybrid's teeth gleamed in a mischievous look in Alouette's direction, before he tried to go from resting, to a full sprint without any notice beyond his grin. He was not as lanky as he had been in his youth, more muscle on him, but also more weight as a result. Extra weight that made the man slower to get up to speed, and slower to make turns. Rather than seek to tag her, Inca instead tried his best to catch her between himself and the wall, arms outstretched to both help arrest his approach, but also to make it harder to worm past him.

Where in the past, he'd been more thorough in pinning Alouette against a wall, this time he was deliberately careless, if he managed to snare her at all. It had been an impulsive effort, one that did not go hand in hand with anything resembling a plan, for if he did manage to catch her.
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POSTED: Fri Aug 10, 2018 1:03 pm

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She having fun for a change, which was different than it had been the first couple of times they had met, when he had held her bow above her head first and foremost for a kiss, and then the next time when he had come upon her in the woods a few months later, when she had tried to get sweet revenge for the bow by taking his small bundle of belongings he had settled in camp. Of course, now things were different. The both of them were adults and they had grown in more ways than just physical. She was more herself than the scared, feral girl who had tried to pry her hands free of his and he was more sincere in the way he played with her than how pushy he had been then.

She was ready to go at the drop of a dime and it seemed he was too, though his body was more burly than it had been when she'd first met him. He had filled in, that was easy to see when she took the chance to once over him but she had become more of a woman herself in the time it had taken for them to see one another again after so long and with that, one might have expected the puppy playfulness to deteriorate but she was still just as energetic as she had been before. 'Silver-tree' eyes eagerly watched as Inca took a few steps toward her and then paused, as if he needed a break in the little game of tag the two were playing.

"Pft," she managed, brushing the back of her hand against her face to catch a wayward itch. "I can do this all day, slow poke." Of course, she was still mid-sentence when he began running at her again. A startled yelp brushed passed her lips and in a flurry of motion, she found herself pressed against the wall, stepping one foot to the other as he settled between her and her route of escape.

Against the wall, her only way of escape cut off by outstretched arms, she thought just maybe, if she could weasel her way underneath the wall he, himself, presented, that she could slip by him and his arms, go around another tree, even, to send this game into the next phase. Clumsily, she charged that way, ducking at the last minute to no avail. It was with bubbling laughter creeping from her lips that she felt arms enclose around her, lifting her up in the air with ease. "Okay, okay, you got me."

Alouette Moineau



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POSTED: Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:47 pm

The dash toward the wall was quick to remind Inca how worn out he was, but there was still enough left in the hybrid to act out his plan. Lou's startled yelp the first sign that she'd realized what he was doing, he efforts to move out of the way cut off when the man's palms planted themselves against the wall. A faint grunt escaped Inca in the process of arresting his approach, only wanting to corner the woman, not collide with her.

She attempted to escape him, and for a moment seemed like she might do just that, but his arms wrapped around his would be 'quarry' in the end. Inca pulled her into a hug that proved enough to lift her a little bit off the ground, if only for a moment or two, before her conceding led to the man putting her down. Even after Inca let Lou's feet back onto the ground, his arms stayed wrapped around her, his mischievous grin still evident, and unlikely to fade after such success.

”Now who's the slow poke?” Inca teased, his hold upon her loosening, enough that she could break the embrace if she chose to, even if Inca didn't take that last step himself. His own tired sounding laughter joined Lou's, while Inca's eyes tried to find her own ”Let's take a break, won't be much fun if I'm not able to move... Got long before you have to be back?” he continued. There was a light pleading tone to his voice, at least while suggesting the break, fading quickly enough when his thoughts turned toward how much longer she could stay with him.
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POSTED: Fri Aug 10, 2018 8:23 pm

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His embrace was firm enough that she knew he wanted her close, loose enough that she could get out if she wanted to. For a moment, she didn't but things were different now than they had been and she had a choice. She did then, too, though she had been very malleable to what others had wanted and what was okay, what was not. Her breaths were hot against the coolness of the air before her, labored even to match the distress he seemed to put off at having to chase her so long.

If it was a break he wanted, she could very much be down with that. Of course, they were in something of a position and she felt the familiar stirrings in the pit of her belly, butterflies, as she recalled, as she withdrew from his grasp, instead of running, settling back against the wall with his arms hanging around her loosely. The feral woman relaxed in Inca's lighter embrace, despite how against it she had been only a few weeks prior to their current meeting and time spent together.

One of her hands moved to rustle fingers at his hair before they fell once more to her sides. She lightly shook her head, "I have to go home tomorrow. We're building houses for ourselves and I need to help Dreyma." Not that she had explained who Dreyma was to him just yet. A lot of her life was still yet a mystery since he was a loner and she still couldn't be sure that she could trust him after everything they had been through. She was trying, though. "I can stay here tonight, though. If you want. I don't know where your camp is or if you even just keep moving."

It had been quite some time since she had been a loner. Her father, her mother, even Dreyma, had not been wanderers in the time it took her to grow up. She had only really started traveling after having shifted for the first time, when Dreyma had come along with her to the Court in her efforts to begin a new life for herself. "I never asked what you did out here all by yourself."

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POSTED: Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:47 am

He didn't say it out loud, didn't ask Alouette to stay in his arms, but the thought was definitely there. The loose hold that Inca had settled into was not quite as close as he might have liked, and had waited to see whether she would choose to break his intentionally weak grip on her, or allow him to stay so close. Alouette relaxing in his grip as close an answer as Inca figured he'd get, even if it fell short of her drawing closer in response.

When she reached for his hair, Inca's brow rose, his gaze shifting toward the woman's hand, for at least as long as he could follow without turning his head. Distantly he wondered if she might flick at him, or maybe pinch him in retaliation for his underhanded victory, but got away with only having his hair rustled, making the coyote look even more unkempt. He listened intently, and made no move to stop the woman's hand, only shaking his head a little bit in an unsuccessful attempt to erase any sign that her fingers had gone through his hair.

Another perplexed look overtook his fairly content expression, the name 'Dreyma' meaning nothing to Inca, but he still wracked his memory to make sure that she hadn't mentioned them in the past. Before he could ask about the mystery person, Inca found himself distracted by what he took to be good news, in that she was offering to stay. ”Of course you can stay Lou... Even if I don't really have a camp, really just where I settle down for the night.” Inca answered back, with a touch more eagerness in the man's voice than he'd intended, his voice a little less breathy, and without thinking ahead as to how he'd even be a proper host with as little as he had.

The spotlight found it's way to him while he tried to remember if he still had any food left that he could share with Lou, or if he'd need to try finding something later in the evening, or the next morning. It's light not at all comfortable to Inca, given how unimpressive his life had become since becoming a loner, hardly the life that he thought would make him appealing to Alouette. ”Well...” Inca clawed for time to think of a good way to describe hunting just enough to remain healthy, while occasionally stealing from others when he saw a good opportunity. ”Hunt mostly, smaller things usually. Meet new people sometimes.” Inca answered after having allowed a brief pause to hang in the air, all true, mostly, even if he'd omitted the bit about stealing. In a moment of inspiration, his earlier grin crept back on the man's face, and he added in a lower, almost conspiratorial voice ”Sometimes bigger quarry too though...”, his voice trailing off signaling the point where he leaned toward her, in an attempt to plant a playful nip at Alouette's shoulder.
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POSTED: Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:47 pm

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He almost seemed confused by her display of affection, if that's what it was to begin with. She wasn't used to short hair and indeed, the only one she could recall with hair so short had probably been Maria, the stranger she'd met in Amherst when she had gone to trade off some of her old leather pieces and the stuff she'd earned from those trades. She had been so happy when she had come back with honey and even some of those seeds from the strawberries she had found, courtesy of the stranger who had shown her to the bar for the first time. She had a small smile at the look of bemusement that over writ the earlier moment of confusion just a few moments before at the mention of Dreyma's name and she lightly shook her head.

"I've never mentioned her, have I.." she said, more rhetorical than anything else. "Dreyma's my older 'sister'," she said, using air quotes with her fingers. "I've known her my whole life and she's my protector and guardian." Only Dreyma didn't know about him or what the two had gone through.

"I'm sure you'll meet her at some point," she said, assuming that the two of them stayed committed to whatever this was between them, reaching out that hand that had tasseled his hair to brush fingers over his chest as he authorized and cleared her desire to stay with him for the night, rather than heading back in the darkness to her pack and sneaking in as if this whole thing were a secret.

"Can we make camp here?" she asked, looking around them. Indeed, it was a decent spot for a camp.

The clearing of trees, the mossy, bricked up wall behind her and him where the foundations to an old building lay in ruins, trees spread far enough apart that it was easy to walk... and play a game of tag within. Enough shrubbery and bushes, as well as dead leaves from last year's fall, that it would be easy to find wood and fuel for a fire. The only thing it was missing was fresh water and she was sure they could find something if they looked around a bit longer.

She had assumed stealing was a part of who he was out here. After all, he had taken her bow upon their first meeting or had he forgotten about that? While he didn't bring it up, it was still there nonetheless. She nibbled at the inside of her cheek and offered a small nod of her head in the affirmative. "I hunt a lot," she said sparingly, "but I normally have someone along. Dreyma and I hunted a lot together at first when we first joined our pack. Now I have other pack members who join me from time to time unless I'm trapping something or trying to fish," she explained.

"I make clothes. I'm learning new techniques or trying to make things easier for myself but it can be tough and time consuming. That's why it takes so long for us to see each other again, sometimes." She let an air of pause gather between them before she let her hand drop and her 'silver-tree' gaze lift from his chest to his eyes. "Have you considered joining another pack?"

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POSTED: Tue Aug 28, 2018 3:25 am

Alouette's answer for his perplexed look did little to help, the air quotes around 'sister' leaving him unsure if they were related somehow, or just good friends. The addition of protector and guardian made the man suddenly suspicious about whether it was someone he would wanted to meet, especially if they happened to know how the two had come to know one another. ”If she's your 'sister', I'm sure I will sooner or later, hope she's heard good things about me?” Inca answered back, his eyes carrying a hint of concern in them, even if his voice sounded confident enough.

The woman's would be protector, and the potential drama that might come from them, that only remained on Inca's mind up to the point that a brush of her hand over his chest distracted him. The question of whether their would be playground was a good enough place to camp came next, and his eyes tried to follow where her own gaze wandered as a result. None of the ruins looked particularly sheltering from his point of view, but a few trees looked like they'd offer at least some protection if the weather turned to rain on them. ”It looks as good a place as any, we can set down near one of those trees. Make a little fire, spread my my deer hide out on the ground, if I can find where it ended up...” Inca agreed readily, remembering part way that he'd lost the make shift cloak somewhere during their game of cat and mouse.

To Inca's relief, Alouette chose either to overlook the possibility that he was still a thief, or failed to remember that was how they'd met. He didn't regret that was how they'd met, though he sometimes wondered if she felt the same way, that their first kiss had been one to retrieve her stolen bow. Instead, the conversation turned readily enough toward hunting, and he listened along as that turned to talk of her efforts to make clothes. It was a skill that Inca lacked, wearing crude hide as sophisticated as he'd ever been able to accomplish on his own, even if the thought of a well made outfit intrigued him.

While she talked, the beginnings of an idea started to blossom within Inca, the problem of long stretches between their encounters, answered perhaps by helping her. He knew nothing about it, and was as likely to hinder as help, but it was only a sudden pause that kept Inca from pouncing on the idea. Inca struggled to mull over the last few words she'd said, wondering at first if he'd missed a question to be answered, or if she was waiting for him to do something, but her voice resumed before he became uncertain enough to just ask.

His eyes blinked at the question itself, and would have had little trouble answering if it hadn't been plopped at the end of her brief silence, or if she wasn't looking into his eyes. ”I uh... ya. Sure, I kind of miss it. Was definitely safer... more comfortable.” Inca answered back after his own pause, noncommittal at first, before attempting to nudge lightly at her cheek with the tip of his snout. The faintest of suspicions clung to the hybrid, but fear of looking stupid if he was wrong kept him from just asking what he wanted to ask. In place of a blunt question, Inca instead offered up a suggestion of his own. ”Would making clothes take less time if you had someone to help you? Not have to worry about hunting some days might help too?” Inca began, the suggestion intentionally vague, but ending with something more overt ”Most packs would make it harder to see you Lou, being a loner has been pretty handy for that.”.
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POSTED: Sun Sep 09, 2018 11:23 am

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Alouette had seen the urgency in Dreyma's eyes each time she saw the woman, the panic and desire to race away. While she knew her 'sister' loved her children, there was always the risk that she would bolt since she did not seem as if she really fit the Courtier life style as much as Alouette had tried to fit in over the last few months, even the last year, for that matter. That made it hard to guess whether Inca would ever meet Dreyma in the first place, if the pups got old enough to prosper by themselves without Dreyma present. If her 'sister' decided it was best to move on as her angst seemed to denote.

Inca's questioning glance, though, brought a guilty half-smile to the girl's lips, though, and she was left to shake her head. "I haven't told her about you. I haven't told anyone about you," she admitted.

It wasn't that she was ashamed of him but others had known that something was wrong with her in the few months she had taken to herself rather than focusing on her pack or her endeavors outside of the pack's borders. Inca had not been important enough to garner words spoken between her and Dreyma, if only because she had a feeling that the boy would be in danger if Dreyma found out how far she had been pushed during their first few meetings with one another. How pushy he had been, how naive Alouette had been in slight.

With the conversation moving onto new paths, the timing readily accepted to Alouette's relief, she found herself agreeing with Inca and his proposed idea. She had a bag of her own, leathers and pelts, that she always brought with her when she was out and about in case the chance to trade became a reality. His pelt, assuredly, would come of use while she did her best to help set up a camp that would shelter them not only from the rain but from sight as well in the case of any other wild animals.

When talk of packs became the pivotal point of their conversation, she seemed to show a keen interest in his thoughts. After all, she had never expected to find someone she liked, that she wanted to get to know so soon. Relationships with an individual in a pack and one outside a pack was something that brought anxiety to her, even if only because they were not viewed as real relationships and mateship wasn't possible with someone whom the pack did not place any focus on.

She shook her head lightly, hair ruffling in place before she paused to glance up at him with his snout brushing lightly against her cheek. "I think in the process of clothes making, you'd only get in the way," she murmured honestly, the look on her face apologetic a moment later. "Not that you'd be a big headache or anything but you just don't really know what to do... unless that's a skill of yours?" she questioned then.

"Though not having to hunt every time I needed a melt or skin to make leather would be nice," she offered with a small grin.

That grin, however, was left to fade at his next sentiment. Despite being eager to make camp, she found herself feeling guilty and that probably wasn't his intent but that's certainly what happened. "What you're saying is that you're not eager to join a pack because you've been seeing me?" she asked, rolling her head lightly to the side to peer into Inca's eyes. "I don't want to hold you back," she sighed. "Have you ever considered an alternative?"

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