Over the Hills

Leaf

POSTED: Sat Aug 16, 2014 1:14 pm

OOC: Set 16th August, late afternoon

When they had first arrived in Vinatta, Arno had spent several days cooped up inside the house they had been given as a home. Having an actual structure like this – warm and comfortable and practically filled with soft things – to live in was novel enough to amuse Arno for quite some time, and he wanted to be near his still unwell mother.

After several days though the house was starting to feel confining and cramped, and Aimée – while far from recovered – was doing much better after a couple days of regular food and cover over her head. Bored and literally unused to staying still for so long, Arno was soon itching to explore his new home and, partially to just get some peace and quiet, Aimée set him free to explore the village.

That, however, had gone a bit off the rails. Arno's excitement to see more of the territory had quickly led him farther afield from the village and into the thick woods surrounding it. Arno had happily wandered through the woods, nose practically stuck to the ground as he took in all the scents of his new home and the people he shared it with, when he suddenly realised that he had no idea where he was.

That had been a quarter of an hour ago, and it was getting harder and harder to ignore the chill of panic that was running down his spine. Being lost was scary enough but Arno had had it drummed into his head that it was practically deadly. A fair enough case while they had been on the road, and his mother had just as little knowledge of the territory they were moving through as he did, but somewhat less of an issue now they weren't alone. Unfortunately, the panicking Arno wasn't really in the frame of mind to think things through right now. The only thing keeping him from completely losing his head was the scent trail he was following. He didn't know who it was or where it led but it was familiar. Only faintly so, but he was pretty sure that he has smelled it before back in the village. He didn't know where it led, but it was something to focus on at least and there was still hope that it would lead him back to the village.

That hope was dashed when the trail led him out of the trees and into a small clearing, and suddenly his nose was assailed by a wave of scent from all sides. The trail had not only diverged, it had practically exploded! Almost a dozen different wolves, trails going every direction. For a moment Arno stood in the clearing, trying and failing to make sense of the storm invading his nose. Arno skidded across the clearing, round and round in circles until he was dizzy trying to find the right path. As the panic began to cloud Arno's judgement more and more he noticed a bush that seemed slightly familiar and rushed through it, only to stop in shock as he skidded paws first into a shallow stream.

There hadn't been a stream where he had been before, he hadn't been anywhere near a stream.

Reason went out the window and with a cry of panic Arno took of running, crashing wildly through the undergrowth. Twigs and branches tugged and snagged at his fur, leaving a trail of hair attached to the plants he passed. The twinging pain in his flanks didn't even register in his mind, all that he wanted to do was get home as quickly as possible. Pity he didn't know which way home way.
[612]
Arno Rousseau
Now it's time to say goodbye, To the things we loved, And the innocence of youth.

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Alex
Luperci Craftsman
Scars strengthen the soul

POSTED: Sat Aug 16, 2014 5:18 pm

269

They kept having the same talk, and Leaf was getting more comfortable with the idea. It might be nice, really, to have his own kids—he sure enough, as Ivy pointed out again and again, was experienced in the fact.

He hadn't told her yes, but he had stopped fighting with her about it. Instead they smoothed things over each time and kept busy. With his mom's new kids, Leaf expected to be busy. Beyond that, with her encouragement, he was now actively seeking to make his way to the Vald tier. It was slow going, but it was hard for a fox to prove himself all the time. Still, he wore the pack's sigil and name. That alone was proof he needed to do all he could.

Of course, sometimes Leaf was okay with being lazy. He was doing so now, laying in the dappled sunlight not far from the stream. This would-be catnap was interrupted by a child's yowl of terror, and it jolted Leaf upright so quickly he felt his neck cramp. Startled, his fur all on end, the fox went streaking towards what now sounded like someone trampling through the forest. If it was an intruder, he'd need help.

Soon enough, though, he spied the source. It was a boy, a young one, and he was running sure enough...just not from anything. Confused and concerned, Leaf took after him. He was fast, true as all foxes, and it did not take him long to get close enough to sound a series of high, friendly foxy-barks, trying to show by his bouncing display he was no threat.


POSTED: Sat Aug 16, 2014 6:27 pm

More and more of the territory rushed past Arno's eyes as he streaked through the trees, and none of it was familiar at all. All that Arno wanted to do was to get back home, find his mother, curl up and forget the outside world. Unfortunately his first instinct when he was panicked – to run – wasn't helping much in this situation. Pity then that Arno wasn't the most rational of canines when panicked like this, since he was just making things worse. Fortunately, before the boy could get himself even more lost than he already was, something came along to distract him.

Arno yelped in shock at the sudden, unexpected noise from his side. Arno didn't recognise the high-pitched sound at first and stopped dead in his tracks in confusion. Well, he tried to stop dead in his tracks, it ended up being more of a skid through a pile of loose leaves that ended with Arno pressed flat against the trunk of a comfortably thick tree, the wooden shelter in-between him and the noise. After spending a few seconds pressed against the bark of the tree, feeling his heart thumping against his chest from a mixture of exertion and his earlier panic, Arno peeked his nose around the side of the tree, glancing to see if he could spot the source of the noise.

That task ended up being easy enough, given the brightly coloured fur of the small canine that had made the noise. Arno calmed down a bit at the sight of the fox, panic momentarily being overtaken by curiosity and confusion, though it still lurked in the back of his mind, lingering and reminding him that he still had no idea where he was. Arno's posture was tense as he peered around at the fox, but not really aggressive; it was more the tense posture of someone ready to bolt if given the slightest reason to, a description which fit Arno pretty well right about now.

Eyeing the smaller canine warily Arno opened his mouth a bit before pausing, ears lowering in confusion. Could foxes talk properly? Arno had no clue; he'd heard about them from his mother but never really seen one before now that hadn't bolted in the other direction long before getting within talking distance. Deciding to play it safe Arno let out a short bark of question and bluster. Not that he was actually threatening at all; Arno's body language clearly displayed that he was still scared and ready to run away more than threaten anyone.
[426]
Arno Rousseau
Now it's time to say goodbye, To the things we loved, And the innocence of youth.

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Alex
Luperci Craftsman
Scars strengthen the soul

POSTED: Tue Aug 19, 2014 12:34 pm

195

The chase did not last long—the kid either tripped or intentionally dove behind a tree, kicking up grass and dirt in his wake. Leaf came to a skidding halt, and jumped a little when a noisy bird, spooked by their display, flew up past his face.

When the boy finally emerged from behind the tree, Leaf had settled. He was still, save for the faint swaying of his tail. Alert and bright-eyed, the fox took in the sight. A wolf, of some sort, but maybe a little to skinny. Leaf supposed it might have been his age, and thought on his own brothers. They had been all funny looking once, with too-big heads and feet. He didn't remember when, though; time didn't really seem so easily followed to him.

He was nervous, too, this boy. Leaf wondered at the display, and fanned his ears forward to show his intentions were friendly. His pointy muzzle leaned forward, sniffing the air. This was no loner, though the pack scent was still ingraining itself in his otherwise unfamiliar smell. The fox smiled, whiskers curling.

Hiya! Wow you're really fast! He laughed a little. What's the hurry? You okay?


POSTED: Wed Aug 20, 2014 6:36 pm

Arno was becoming more and more confused by the small canine that stood in-front of him, especially as the immediate panic that he had been feeling started to sink beneath the distraction of the current situation. Most foxes he had seen had been flighty creatures, generally fleeing long before Arno ever managed to get a good look at them, never mind approaching him. Arno wasn't sure if he felt more or less confused when he took a sniff of the air and found that the fox bore a strong Vináttan scent. A fox with the scent of a wolf pack, hanging around in that pack's territory. Either this fox was a very practised trespasser or there was something that Arno didn't entirely understand going on.

Foxes could speak, it turned out, though that was less of a true surprise to Arno. The fox was practically oozing non-aggression as it spoke to him and even though Arno didn't venture out fully from behind his tree, he couldn't help but feel the tiniest bit soothed by the calm tone.

It had taken a while, but Arno's confused thoughts about the fox finally stumbled onto the right path; could the fox be a member of Vinátta? Arno had never heard of something as small as a fox being a member of a wolf pack, but then again he hadn't really heard much at all about packs, and nobody had ever said anything specific about their being no foxes in them. A small bit of hope flourished in Arno's mind, and while still timid enough that he remained behind the tree, he finally calmed down enough to articulate himself a bit. “I don't know where I am.” He answered the fox. There were hefty amounts of embarrassment and shame woven into his tone; Arno had had the words “Don't wander of” drummed into his head since he could understand High Speech, and he had somehow managed to do it practically on his first trip out!
[325]
Arno Rousseau
Now it's time to say goodbye, To the things we loved, And the innocence of youth.

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Alex
Luperci Craftsman
Scars strengthen the soul

POSTED: Sun Sep 07, 2014 11:42 am

180

There was a lot to be said for talking foxes, given that they often had no one to talk to. Fox pelts were often a pretty thing for traders, and more than once a wolf had mistaken him for an easy meal. Still, Leaf went on and lived in his carefully constructed place in the world. This pack was his pack, and these wolves his friends and allies. Helping one of their children was the least he could do.

Besides, talking foxes weren't all that intimidating to begin with.

Oh heck, that's not a problem! You've got yourself a guide here, fella, he flashed a toothy smile, sharp on his narrow face. Leaf wagged his tail again, and sniffed at the pup. He was new, that was for sure. Had a mom with him too, if Leaf was catching things right.

I'm Leaf Darkfire; I live here too. Where you tryin' to get to, huh? Either he would want to go back or forward; either way, Leaf hoped the presence of a seasoned pack member might ease the still-nervous pup.


POSTED: Thu Sep 11, 2014 7:20 pm

  • Word Count: 219
  • Setting: ---
  • Form: Wolf
Sorry for the wait, I'm back in England now :-)

Arno felt a flood of relief as the fox kept talking, even answering the smaller canine's wagging tail with a hesitant twitch of his own. A talking fox was certainly odd, but Arno didn't particularly care about what species Leaf was when he was offering Arno a way back home. “Thank you.” Arno said quietly, tail drifting slowly back and forth as he started to calm down. As had become habit recently Arno took a deep sniff of the fox when he offered his name, fixing both name and scent in his memory. Remembering Leaf's scent would be easier than the various wolves that made up much of the pack at least, the mixed scent of fox and pack was pretty distinctive.

“I'm Arno Rousseau.” Arno offered up in return, his accent unconsciously mixing a bit as he said his last name. “And I’m trying to get to... uhh...” Arno frowned as he tried to remember what the place he and his mother had been living had been called again. “Jord... uh, Jordhem?” he hazarded a guess, tongue tripping over the unfamiliar word. “Home, lots of hill-dens and wolves.” He didn't quite know what all the places in Vinatta were called yet, but he could describe the ones he knew at least. “You know where to go?”

Arno Rousseau
Now it's time to say goodbye, To the things we loved, And the innocence of youth.

User avatar
Alex
Luperci Craftsman
Scars strengthen the soul

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