And I'm caught in a space between my head and my face again

POSTED: Sun Jul 12, 2015 10:39 pm

This is for Patrolman co-rank! Set at the eastern border, Forest of Nod. Vicira is in Lupus form.

The lean gray shape trotted on silent paws through the vegetation, her red-striped snout low to the loamy, moist soil and her tail low behind her. She paused to inhale the marks set by others: the proud scent of Vesper, the less dominant but dutiful odor of Cartier, and the grace-notes of other coyotes who'd passed this way to make it clear to all where Inferni's land claim stretched. She noted, too, the downturned arches of skulls, the pensive leer of their sockets, and the splashes of paint and bird droppings both. Here and there, she found an acrid scent-marker angrier than the rest, and some of these, too, belonged to her mother.

It was a constant reminder of their tensions with Cour des Miracles, and the very real possibility of war in the future. She'd heard from Covenant (who'd heard from Maddox, who'd heard from Conrad) that the dogs' King had come to their borders seeking some sort of justice -- but he'd apparently been sent away without what he wanted. Vicira wondered if this was because of the yellow wolfdog.

Vicira paused, head lifted on an elegant neck, her ears twitched back in irritation. Her dark shoulders bristled, a moment, but she loped onward again. The mongrel would be a damn fool to threaten them again on their territory. Marlowe would see to his death.

But the coywolf did her duty, scouting the borders, listening to the chatter of the ravens (undiscernable from the cheerier birdsong around her), and took solace in the fact that no Courtier would get by her.


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Inferni
Regulus III
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Raze
Luperci Multiple Co-ranks Level III Rex Chaos Star oderint dum metuant
cinder and smoke
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POSTED: Sun Jul 12, 2015 11:19 pm

Hope you don't mind the pp with the wind <3 Kennedy is in Secui form and was assigned female at birth.

There had been a hushed buzz around the clan -- something about a Court and its King visiting only to be turned away from what they desired. The rumors hadn't escaped Kennedy, who overheard them from a gossiping pair of coyotes, but he wasn't sure what half of it was about. He thought that tensions weren't an unfamiliar thing with a group who surrounded their borders with skulls, but even he, a newcomer, could feel the tension whenever the topic was brought up.

Kennedy wasn't sure what to make of it yet; he joined to await for his sister and to help the clan, but he didn't come to aid in a conflict, though he came to realize that was partly the reason why the Centurion must have accepted him into their fold. It couldn't be blamed, for no one could be faulted for wanting to protect their home. But fresh from the wilderness and rusty to the feeling of kinship to a pack, much less a clan he just joined, Kennedy did not know if this was a fight he should tangle himself with.

But the thoughts of blood and war were only rabble in his mind, and he drew his lips back in a yawn as he trotted alongside the scent-markers that signaled the borders. He stuck his nose close to the ground and sniffed again. All was quiet, aside from the incessant chatter of the wildlife that were nothing but white noise and the air was mild. No sign of a Courtier or his sister, though he was admittedly only looking for the latter; he did not even know what the Court smelled like.

However, the wind that pushed into Inferni from the outside world carried to him a scent, and he lifted his head and swiveled his ears, still for a moment before walking again. Just a clan mate, he thought, somewhere ahead of him. With a yip he switched into a lazy gallop, his sturdy form carrying him easily between some trees and to where a small gray figure stood.

"Hey," he greeted as he slowed to a trot, voice quiet and not exceedingly friendly, but it was a greeting, if a dull one. "You're patrolling, too?"

It’s easy to explain 'cause this world’s not tame
Inferni
Quintus (NPC)
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Shannah
Luperci Multiple Co-ranks Level III Rex
little fang

POSTED: Tue Jul 14, 2015 8:04 pm

Vicira sniffed at some bushes, pushing past them and padding to the very edge of the border. The scent markers were staggered along with the skull stakes, and she rubbed on leaves and bark and earth to refresh Inferni's presence even where the border scent began to fade. The nature of odor made a border less clear than a human's drawn boundary line, but it was distinct enough, and by inching it forward a foot or two, she wasn't making real change. The last time they had expanded their claim they'd done so by a mile at least, setting landmarks.

She rolled on the ground in lieu of making water, and came up with fur tousled and smelling more strongly of dust and leaves. She shook out her coat then lifted her head as a bigger bronze shape approached, stinking heavily of pine.

Vicira lifted her tail in a wag and smiled at the stranger, blue eyes questioning -- they must have been new to the clan -- before nodding. Want to come with me? she suggested. The other's choice of form might not mean that they could fight, but Vici would be lying if it wasn't a bit comforting.

I'm Vicira Tears, the silver coywolf added. The leaders' daughter.


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Inferni
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Luperci Multiple Co-ranks Level III Rex Chaos Star oderint dum metuant
cinder and smoke
ash in your mouth

POSTED: Tue Jul 14, 2015 9:16 pm

Kennedy silently nodded when the other asked if he wanted to join and added verbally, soft and nonchalant, "Sure. Company's better in times like these." He wasn't worried about the looming sense of dread that draped over the clan—more out of ignorance than anything else—and perhaps he showed his easiness, his underestimation, when he spoke so casually. War was only something far away, in another land or in another time, spoken on the tongue and nothing more.

He remembered when Ephraim spoke of past conflict when they joined AniWaya, and he thought his father's words to be that of a lifetime before his own. Things like that didn't happen for him to witness.

She gave her name as well as her lineage, which caused the coymutt to flick his ears curiously. "The leaders'?" he echoed as he moved to walk beside Vicira while leaving a respectful space between them, emphasizing the plural word. He had met Vesper, and knew of Myrika, the Aquila. "That's pretty cool," he continued, his voice maintaining its casualness to show he wasn't mocking. Two mothers weren't an unusual thought to him, though he thought jokingly in his mind that he wouldn't be able to handle two Kizzie's. Fortunately, not every mother was like his own.

"I'm Kennedy Fisher, son of some people you've probably never heard of about. I joined the clan recently, but I think you already knew that." It seemed all the coyotes he met knew as much, but it was a given. It'd be hard to miss an unfamiliar face meandering around their lands when things were on edge as they were. "One of your moms accepted me a couple of days ago."

It’s easy to explain 'cause this world’s not tame
Inferni
Quintus (NPC)
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Shannah
Luperci Multiple Co-ranks Level III Rex
little fang

POSTED: Fri Jul 17, 2015 4:23 pm

You've heard, then? Vicira asked softly as the hybrid answered, sounding seemingly confident or perhaps just nonchalant about the whole matter. For Vici, it was a different story, and even now her paws shifted in the grass, a dark ear turning. There was tension before, when she was younger and less experienced (implying she was very experienced now, which was a lie), but when the yellow wolfdog got in her face, it became that much more real to her. He could have done terrible things to her and she would have been helpless without Marlowe.

She frowned faintly but tried to keep composed, letting her bushy tail sway and nodding when the other approached her. She understood what "that's pretty cool" meant, but supposed an awkward reaction was better than a negative one. Not that, with her impending confusion, she was in any real position to judge.

The coymutt introduced himself as Kennedy Fisher, and Vicira's eyes widened.

Are... Do you know a Lou? I mean, her real name's Louise Frost, but -- Her tongue swiped nervously over her lips. My friend Lou, she -- she had a sister named Kennedy, but...


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Inferni
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Luperci Multiple Co-ranks Level III Rex Chaos Star oderint dum metuant
cinder and smoke
ash in your mouth

POSTED: Sat Jul 18, 2015 1:31 pm

"Only a little," Kennedy admitted, glancing into the forest as he spoke. "But it's sort of obvious without having to be told. Everyone's on edge, and I keep hearing things about a Court. I don't know everything, but I think I get the gist." It sounded like a misunderstanding between the clan and the pack to him, though he didn't say as much out loud. He thought that maybe he truly didn't understand, but he pushed the thought to the side. He knew of packs, families, and individuals that squabbled and ended in no bloodshed. Most of the time.

As long as they called their situation a tension, then things could be smoothed over time or over words. Nothing had happened to tip the scale into the war everyone was gossiping about.

The coymutt noticed the the girl's frown, but he kept quiet. It was mostly from keeping the conversation from getting more awkward. He could imagine that Vicira had gotten many "that's cool"s and "oh, really"s in her life when she mentioned her mothers, and he didn't want to make an oddity out of her parents by trying to salvage how he had came off. People blundering to be politically correct, while mostly innocent, was exhausting when you were the subject matter. He got tired of it sometimes. It was better to learn and move on.

He didn't notice the surprise on her face until she spoke about a Lou, a Louise Frost, and he turned to look at her with similarly wide eyes. He shouldn't have been surprised, he thought. Vesper had said that she had been here before, so others must have knew about her. When Vicira mentioned him, though, his face shifted into an unreadable expression and he looked away, focusing his gaze ahead of them when she trailed off her sentence. He got tired of it sometimes.

"Louise Lily Frost is my sister," he said, and added, concentrating to keep his words from becoming barbed, "And I'm her brother." He didn't need to become defensive, he told himself. There was nothing to be defensive about. Things were as they were. "Used to be a Frost, but I was picked up by a Fisher after I ran from Mer Blue, our home."

It’s easy to explain 'cause this world’s not tame
Inferni
Quintus (NPC)
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Shannah
Luperci Multiple Co-ranks Level III Rex
little fang

POSTED: Wed Jul 22, 2015 7:45 pm

Yeah, Vicira agreed lamely. Why was she so lax with words lately? Every stupid stammer and yip seemed like a waste of breath, though (in spite of recent personal developments) she was far from a confident coyote anymore. Composed, once at least, but not confident.

She lowered her head and sniffed at the bushes again, and began to weave through the stakes haphazardly placed, the skulls dangling from branches or strings with clacking deer hooves. Many were splashed with paint or bird droppings, while others bleached in the sun. She wondered if any would join them before the summer was over. I don't know how serious it's going to get. I guess if any pack would be prepared for it, just from history, it's Inferni, though. But reading about war and going to war were two very different things.

The Tirones' olive eyes darted away from her, a stony look overcoming their face, distant. Vicira twitched her ears back, uncertain again, but Kennedy spoke in no uncertain terms. This was the long-lost sibling that her friend had left the clan for -- this was Kennedy, who used to be a Frost, who apparently used to be other things, too. The scholar frowned, pricking her ears slowly.

I don't... understand, she confessed, coming around another bush and staring at him. You're a boy but you weren't before, not when Lou was talking about you. Did something change?

She flattened her ears again at once and looked down at her feet. Sorry if that's personal, I just -- Lou was one of my best friends when she lived here. It wasn't like such an admission could save her from the consequences of rudeness, especially when the man's face looked so guarded, but Vicira did sorely want to understand who this ghost was.


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Inferni
Regulus III
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Luperci Multiple Co-ranks Level III Rex Chaos Star oderint dum metuant
cinder and smoke
ash in your mouth

POSTED: Wed Jul 22, 2015 11:59 pm

He watched the small gray coyote as she weaved through the stakes and he huffed through his nose which kept itself pointed ahead of him. Even if there was idle chatter, he was ever alert. "I have to agree—the skulls are kind of a clear indicator of that." None of the border decor were winners in the end, obviously. Kennedy wondered how it was like for one's skull to be forever used a roost for ravens and as a grotesque display to warn off the weak-stomached.

But something about Inferni seemed old and fixed in place. Packs had sprung and disappeared since he had left and returned to the land, but the clan remained, stuck to the ground like the stakes in the ground that Vicira weaved through.

Not that he believed it would get serious. It would pass over soon, he thought to himself.

He kept his eyes forward as his words were met with more questions, and he kept silent and stone-faced as the girl spoke her confused enough for him to paint her expression without having to look at it. This was harder to struggle with; it was easier to deal with strangers than with those who thought they knew about him, who already had an image of him in their mind. It was more difficult to tear a memory down than to start a new one.

Kennedy finally gave Vicira a glance when she said that Lou had been one of her best friends, and he looked away and quickened his pace a little so he was a few steps ahead of her. He nosed at the grass in silence, but then he spoke quietly when he lifted it off the ground. His voice was not cool, but there was no warmth.

"Nothing had changed, really. Lou did know me as... that. She didn't know any better." He had never shared his thoughts, his discomfort, with her when they were pups. It now seemed that was a regrettable decision now in hindsight, but neither siblings were to blame; Kennedy had not known that his thoughts weren't as misplaced as he thought them to be.

He didn't stop walking, but he slowed so that he was nearer to the other. "It's like this: I'm a boy, but I was called a girl when I was born and everyone tried to raise me like one when I wasn't to begin with." That was the easiest way to explain it, but even though he could almost sense that Vicira would take it more as a riddle than an answer.

It’s easy to explain 'cause this world’s not tame
Inferni
Quintus (NPC)
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Shannah
Luperci Multiple Co-ranks Level III Rex
little fang

POSTED: Sat Jul 25, 2015 2:37 pm

The older coymutt trotted ahead of her, still attentive to the borders, and took a moment before answering her question. He sounded guarded, still, and was likely unhappy about needing to answer the question, but he didn't protest.

The picture that Kennedy painted was clear, but some things didn't match with Vicira's view of the world. She did think that she would go crazy if someone at random called her a male and decided she was a male when the evidence to the contrary was loud in her scent and slender form. But Kennedy, though his thick Secui build and powerful scent hid these things, had a body like a female's. His family only called him what they saw, she thought.

You mean in your head, right? she ventured. Her own tone was calm, curious, if tentative, and she quickly gave a shake of her head. Not as in make-believe. I believe you. I just mean that, to me, you have a body like a girl, so that's why they called you one. Her face was hot from drawing attention to this; speaking of someone else's "parts" was inappropriate in any situation that wasn't the type she'd found herself in with Marlowe days ago. But in your head, in your mind or soul or whatever, you're a boy, and nobody can see what's in your head, so they call you wrong all the time.

She hoped she was even close to right. Otherwise, it didn't make any sense to her. She understood why Lou called him a sister, and thought anyone would make that honset mistake, but the thought of being called something wrong every day was maddening. She gave another shake of her head and withers as if dislodging grime from her fur, then tensed at a rustling in the undergrowth -- only for a bird to fly from the bushes. Her pale blue eyes followed its flight before she glanced at Kennedy, lowering her ears bashfully again. This wasn't the conversation she'd thought to have.


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Inferni
Regulus III
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Raze
Luperci Multiple Co-ranks Level III Rex Chaos Star oderint dum metuant
cinder and smoke
ash in your mouth

POSTED: Tue Jul 28, 2015 2:26 pm

His lips pulled down when she said it was in his head, but then she corrected herself and he breathed roughly out of his nose in a huff, slightly exasperated but patient in his own way. He knew that all of this was not common knowledge, and while exhausting having to explain it repeatedly, at least Vicira was respectful and willing to understand. That was more than most individuals would do, and he was quietly grateful for that even if it did not show.

Kennedy's frown remained on his face as his body—the elephant in the room—was brought up. He didn't like talking about. He didn't mind thinking about it in his thoughts, for he had came to accept that his physical being would never reflect himself but had also learned that it would not affect who he was. The latter was a harder concept for most to understand that even he did not comprehend without help. Zinnia had taught him, and the thought of the girl both warmed him and made his chest clench. It had been easier to speak with her about these things.

"You're right. My body is like your's, a girl's, but others can't tell that I'm a boy because of that; you can't really scent one's character and heart." The world would have been a simpler place if that was their reality. He saw her shake out of the corner of his eye, and he paused in mid-step and drew his ears forward as a bird flew from the undergrowth. He looked at Vicira as she watched it leave and as embarrassment came over her and looked at him sheepishly.

Kennedy snorted, but his face softened as he began to walk again.

"It's not like I can expect anything less from others. It's hard to deal with, but it's manageable." He had to be used to it—he would had long ago cracked under the pressure if he had not become hardened to it. Every instance was another scar upon the stone, though, and it made him more weathered and worn.

It’s easy to explain 'cause this world’s not tame
Inferni
Quintus (NPC)
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Shannah
Luperci Multiple Co-ranks Level III Rex
little fang

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