The Slow Lane

The Recovery [AW+]

POSTED: Tue Oct 06, 2015 3:38 pm

Storm panted with each arduous step, leaning heavily on his crutch as he did so. He wasn’t usually an unkind wolf, but with each slow step and jarring on his ribs as the crutch came down, drew a silent curse from him. Pepper, perhaps the most evil healer in the whole world, had decided that today would be the day he leave the warmth, and his drug induced stupor, to do a circuit or two of Fiskebyn. His leg was still useless, but it would build up lax muscles, and help his ribs to repair themselves more quickly.

The autumn day was glorious, warm, dry and wonderfully bright. The sky was a deep blue, and Sister lake glittered invitingly. Try is it might though, the glories of Krokar fell on deaf senses, Storm refused to be pulled out of his funk, and each step was grudging and painful. It had taken him whole minutes to get to the door of his home, and the uneven ground of outside had slowed him even further. Anger born of frustration flared white hot inside of him, and every dragging movement was accompanied by raised hackles. Just crossing the village in which he lived was a journey in itself.

When he finally managed to get nearer the shore of the lake, and had come clear across Fiskebyn, Storm was almost seeing double, and his chest was heaving painfully. His tiredness made him clumsy, he put out a hand to lean his weight against a tree, but it was just too far, he tried to take a quick step, but the awkwardness of the splint restricted his movement, and he tumbled forwards in a graceless heap. He managed to thrust his hands out to break his fall, but his crutch rolled away, and the shock that went through his arms cracked like a whip across his chest and left him gasping on his front. Blue lights flickered in front of his eyes, and for a moment he couldn’t hear anything but the blood roaring in his ears.

After what seemed an eternity, Storm managed to push himself off his face and onto his back, using his elbow to drag himself against the trunk of the tree he’d tried to lean against just moments before. He tried to use the tree to help him up, scrabbling for purchase as he awkwardly rose, but his good leg was to shaky and the position was just too awkward. Humiliation and anger blazed across his face, across his whole being, he was furious, and his stupid crutch had rolled off. He lent his head against the trunk of the tree and silently cursed. His chest heaved with the exertion of it all. This was all Pepper’s fault, if she’d not insisted he do this, he’d not be sitting here looking like a complete pillock, unable to do even the simplest task of standing on his own two feet. He wanted to scream and yell his frustration, but of course, he remained silent, his hackles were up though, and his fist were clenched so tightly the knuckles had gone white.

User avatar
Draiko
Luperci Come sit by my fire

POSTED: Sat Oct 17, 2015 3:48 pm

OOC: we're overdue for a Storm/Milos thread :3

There were many intricacies and underlying mysteries within Krokar that Milos scarcely thought about, but of Storm's disappearance and subsequent return he found himself deeply curious. This was due, in part, because he considered the aquatic Outrigger his friend and cared about him a great deal. To hear that the man had returned, gravely injured and barely conscious, from whatever he had felt necessary to see to had the Magnate cautious and worried. But he had kept his distance, allowing the Cormier time to rest and heal.

The day Storm ventured out, under the tutelage of Krokar's opinionated healer, Milos had been working on pair of new pelts he needed to flesh. Sitting adopt a stool, the Magnate drew the bone fleshing tool across each of the pelts until they were free of fat and connective tissue and ready for the next step. As he finished, panting heavily from exertion, Milos' bright eyes had glanced up to the Cormier's soft grunts and the scraping sound of the crutch to watch Storm pass agonizingly slow through the village. He had lifted a single hand up in greeting, though the wolfdog doubted his injured pack mate was in the proper state of mind to acknowledge much around him.

Milos watched Storm carefully for some time as he limped on, wondering after the wisdom of allowing the injured wolf to exert himself so, before returning hesitantly to his work. Intending for one of the pelts to be tanned without fur, he submerged the first pelt in a barrel of water in order to loosen the follicles before beginning the process of stretching the second skin upon a frame. As he worked, Milos flicked his sunny eyes up frequently to monitor his friend's progress.

A quarter of the way through fixing the skin upon its frame, the Magnate glanced up and caught Storm's agouti figure hovering nearby a tree. The next time he took stock of his progress, the Outrigger was gone.

Immediately pausing his work, Milos stretched out his neck and scanned the area quickly. He caught sight of movement near the base of the tree and with a sinking feeling, he realized what must have happened. With what felt to be as much speed as a spooked rabbit, the wolfdog crossed the distance to Storm at a sprint. "All right, Storm?" he panted as he neared, bright eyes shifting restlessly over his friend's agitated body. "Knew I should'a said somethin' 'bout ya going off an your own. Been watchin' ya from Fiskebyn."

[WC: 420]

User avatar
Mandi
Luperci Mate to Eliza but you'd become my candle in the dark
the sun still rises
even through the rain

POSTED: Sun Oct 25, 2015 11:35 am

Storm knew that Pepper had slowly been reducing the doses of pain killers, telling him it was important he listened to what his body was telling him. Uncharacteristically he’d been smuggling the painkilling paste. It wasn’t as much as he knew he needed, but it was something, he had some stowed now, in a leaf, which he unrolled and licked at. It wasn’t much, but it made the tightness in his chest ease a little, and blunted is agitation, if only a little. When Milos appeared, the winter storm eyed male felt his whole face burn with humiliation at the stupidity of his predicament, and suddenly the painkilling paste didn’t seem nearly enough. The Magnate was hardworking, open, friendly and kind. Storm had always enjoyed the other’s company and the ice skating on the lake was still a fond and funny memory. Seeing Milos here and now though, Storm felt ridiculous, and the pain seemed to grow a great deal harsher. Why had Pepper reduced the dosage, he wasn’t well enough yet.

I have a broken leg, my ribs feel like I’ve been hit by a caribou, and stupidly I can’t get up.

Storm’s body language and gestures were sharp, tight with anger and frustration. That perhaps explained his next gestures, they were flicked out, like the cracking of a whip.

Not really much someone who’s afraid to touch anyone can really do for me right now.

As soon as the gestures were made Storm regretted them, more than that, he was shocked he’d even made them. It had all come into his head so quickly, and his body had followed his thoughts almost instantly. Storm was too angry and frustrated to let the seed of guilt to make him apologise just yet, so he just sat there for a moment panting. It was quite possible that Milos hadn’t understood his gestures, there were members of the pack that often had to ask him to slow down or repeat things.

Just pass me my crutch please.

He said, turning his head towards it, not wishing to see whether or not Milos had understood his sharp words.

User avatar
Draiko
Luperci Come sit by my fire

POSTED: Sun Oct 25, 2015 2:18 pm

OOC: ahh poor Storm :<

And just like being cracked with a whip, Milos flinched.

Storm's gestures created a fissure in his facade, a jagged line through the center of his mask, and it could not be repaired. A sour taste rose in his mouth and the Magnate pulled slowly away. "Sure," he said gently, a bitter smile touching his lips. It shouldn't have surprised him that he would recall Milos' aversion to touch; what hurt more than the knowledge of his phobia was the idea that it would prevent him from helping others. Despite the sting, Milos did not resent his friend for things said out of pain and frustration. Such things had a way of bringing out the worst side of others.

Normally the amicable wolfdog could brush such things aside with a bubbly laugh or a self-deprecating comment, but he still felt raw after the incident with Beatrice and it didn't help that autumn was upon them, with its memories and lengthening nights. Milos located Storm's crutch with ease but felt numb as he offered the tool to his friend. "Here ya are," he added, his voice kind if cheerless. "Mind if I sit with ya? Jus' for a bit?"

He lowered himself down next to Storm without waiting for the quiet wolf's approval. A silence stretched between them before Milos finally glanced into the Outrigger's stormy eyes. "Hurts like hell, don't it?" he asked, gesturing with his nose to Storm's ribs. "En't pleasant, but it helps t' take deep breaths. S'posed t' prevent infections'n such." He looked away again, away from any inquiry or questions Storm might have. He didn't want to answer them. Instead, he remained quiet again for a long while.

"Storm," he said at last, turning away from the bright sky to settle his fiery gaze back onto the other man. "En't much of a fighter an' it's true I got my flaws, but I won't hesitate t' help ya however ya need it. Ever."

[WC: 327]

User avatar
Mandi
Luperci Mate to Eliza but you'd become my candle in the dark
the sun still rises
even through the rain

POSTED: Sun Oct 25, 2015 5:13 pm

OOC Poor Milos you mean, no excuse for Storm to be so mean.

IC:

Storm didn’t often speak, it was true, but he had become incredibly adept at the signals of the body. Now, as he watched his friend’s reaction, that gift had become a curse. The winter eyed male saw how hard his thoughtless jibe had stung the other, and the seed of guilt exploded into a fully grown tree, which wrapped itself around his heart almost instantly. All of a sudden the pain in his chest and leg were not quite so important, and the burn of shame was so intense he wondered if the Magnate could feel the heat of it. Milos stymied the Cormier though, turning away so his gestures would go unseen. Storm bided his time though, eventually the other would have to turn back around, but the wolfdog didn’t give him a chance, continuing.
Taking the proffered crutch, Storm placed it beside him, making sure it wouldn’t roll away. In truth the winter storm eyed Cormier would have preferred to stew in his own self-pity, but Milos didn’t give him that option, plonking himself down, and the wolf found he couldn’t send him away.

I’m sorry, it was a thoughtless comment. He gestured, fluidly and gracefully.

Storm was troubled though. Before the beating he would never have dreamed say something so cruel. Had he changed so much? Was he so different now? It was a moment before the Cormier realised he had his hand raised, as if to start saying something, but he’d not made any gestures.

I’m not much of a fighter either. My dad decided to show me how good he was, but he got tired of someone who didn’t put up much resistance. It was still odd talking about what had happened, and every time he did, he felt his heartrate speed up.

I know you’ll always help, and I appreciate it. he finally gestured after a long pause.

Storm still felt the guilt of his stupidity, the words weren’t enough. Laboriously he adjusted his position, catching his breath at every tug. It left him panting, but he was finally sitting in a more comfortable position.

How did you hurt your ribs then? Storm guessed, thinking that the sort of advice Milos had imparted was given either by a healer, because Pepper had said something similar, or by someone who’d been close to that injury, personally, or a family member perhaps.

User avatar
Draiko
Luperci Come sit by my fire

POSTED: Sat Nov 07, 2015 5:10 pm

OOC: Eh, Milos can handle it c;

Sitting with the healing wolf offered quiet reflection and Milos gave Storm a crooked smile. He nodded and leaned his head against the rough bark of the tree. "I know," he replied, glancing at upwards at the spindly branches above them with their leaves painted in flame. Storm was a good man and there was no resentment between them, though the apology did little to ease the persisting numbness. He ignored it.

Storm's raised hand caught Milos' attention and he swung his head to look at him again. With the Outrigger's gestures, the revelation of his injuries sunk in and left the sour taste of bile at the back of his throat. "Your father did this to ya?" He frowned, his flaming eyes smouldering with disgust. The darker man shook his head slowly. "That en't right. Don't sound like he's worth much." His own father had been a wolf of honor and pride; a brave fighter with intelligence and an intense passion for his pack and for life itself. That much, at least, he could remember about Sybin. Whoever Storm's father was he didn't fit Milos' definition of a father. "I'm glad ya made it back. Home." He smiled. "Gotta stick t'gether, th' lot of us."

The Magnate watched Storm labor into a more comfortable sitting position, concern in his eyes. He was prepared to help but the request never came and a twinge of hate gripped his heart when he considered how relieved it made him feel. Hell, he thought angrily to himself. Stays with a wolf, hell does.

He leaned his head back against the trunk of the tree and quirked his lips into an ironic smile, thinking about Storm's question. Too much of his past had been released lately, far too much. "Ah," he breathed, glancing at his friend from the corner of his eye. "Seen my share o' hatred growin' up. Turns out when someone don't much like ya, they show it to ya with their fists." Among other things. He gave a short, humorless laugh. "Hurts like hell, but they'll recover. Pepper's givin' ya somethin' for th' pain?"
[WC: 353]

User avatar
Mandi
Luperci Mate to Eliza but you'd become my candle in the dark
the sun still rises
even through the rain

POSTED: Sun Nov 08, 2015 11:31 am

Storm liked it when the Magnate had said ‘Home’, Storm had even heard the capitalisation. His friend was right of course, this was home, and his pack was family, a proper family. A place to cling together and leave whatever nasty memories they had behind. When Milos answered his question it was done cryptically. Storm paused, the silence a gentle indication that he was aware Milos wasn’t saying everything, but that the winter storm eyed male wouldn’t press.

Always nice to know someone’s there to help when you need it. My dad… Storm stopped, unsure how to continue.

The adopted Cormier had no problems understanding Milos’s reluctance to talk about his past, but Storm had been learning that for the past to have no power over him was to trust those he now considered families with, at least some things.

Inspires a great deal of loyalty among crew. I wish I could tell you he was like a villain in a story, but is there any luperci like that? I was his greatest embarrassment, and he was very good at letting me know it. When I was smaller I didn’t understand what I’d done for him to hate me so much. It’s so stupid, but…

Again Storm’s body and gestures went still. All of a sudden his leg hurt more than ever and regretted coming out. For a moment he rubbed his leg, unable to look in Milos direction. Storm said nothing for such a long time it almost might have seemed as though he were finished, but eventually his gesturing began again.

but despite everything, up to the night of the shipwreck I was desperate for him to love me, or at least accept me.

Storm’s breath caught and he felt as though he’d just plunged into a freezing pool. He couldn’t remember even telling Gus that, or even acknowledging such thing, and the realisation of it was profound, and it made him feel foolish and stupid and a lot more adjectives. Storm quickly made a dismissive gesture at his friend.

Anyway, Yes Pepper was giving me stuff, but she’s been giving me less, despite the leg still hurting. It apparently means it’s healing. You get anything from her?

User avatar
Draiko
Luperci Come sit by my fire

POSTED: Sun Nov 15, 2015 1:13 am

OOC: <333

Storm was silent and bore his winter eyes into Milos. The Magnate bit the inside of his cheek and gave him a small, sad smile. The memory of Storm's patience hit in like a gust of icy, cold wind and smells of snow stuck to the inside of his nose. Learning to skate on the frozen lake, the Outrigger had shown him a considerable amount of understanding and tolerance towards his apprehension and uncertainty. And also a considerable amount of persistence. Milos wondered if it was even possible to get by without offering something.

He was relieved when the man responded and watched him carefully. Some piece of him, that inherent part that encouraged physical comfort and sympathy, longed to reach out and touch the man's shoulder. And again, when at last he continued, relief bathed him like a babe. Milos frowned. He frowned from disappointment with himself and from disagreement with Storm's gestures. "En't stupid," he interjected with a sharp shake of his head.

Again, Storm's gestures ceased and the thoughts swirled in the Magnate's head. Autumn eyes watched the man carefully. He parted his maw to suggest they get him back home but before he could utter a single word the signals began again. I was desperate for him to love me. Milos released a breath. Or at least accept me.

"En't stupid at all," he repeated after a stretch of silence in which he was unable to meet the man's wintry gaze. Finally, he flicked fire to ice, ignoring Storm's dismissive gesture. Passion had ignited the embers to a roaring flame. "T' hell with 'im, Storm. T' hell with his m'nipulations'n abuse. Ya en't no embarrassment an' ya en't stupid." In a rare moment of genuine anger, his voice had risen and the words came out as a growl. "Don't ya ever let another soul tell ya different." Quickly, like dead leaves burning away, the flames receded and a softness returned to his eyes. "Worth more t' this pack'n th' people in it than ya know. R'member that." He smiled, a broad and lopsided smile. "'Sides, who's gonna r'mind me how t' ice skate this winter?"

Milos offered Storm a wink and then shifted his gaze to his feet. A familiar tension had gripped his stomach. He swallowed. The events of that day with Beatrice played out in his head and he was glad when Storm carried on his gestures. He nodded approvingly then paused. "Me? Nah, not from Pepper," he said, the shadow of a smile still teasing up his lips. "En't been that hurt in a long while." Milos glanced away and felt his nerves gnawing incessantly at his gut. He sucked in a breath of air and let it out again slowly. "When I was young," he began, his voice light and almost whimsical. "I was taken away from m' family an' made t' do lots'a things I didn't wanna do." He paused and crossed his fingers in his lap. "Rather not go int' details, not t'day, but... That's why, Storm." Milos swung his molten gaze back upon his friend. There was still a cold smile on his face. "That's why I en't keen on touch."

"But ev'rythin' heals, right?" He smiled, a bright and genuine smile. "Ev'rythin' heals with time."

[WC: 547]

User avatar
Mandi
Luperci Mate to Eliza but you'd become my candle in the dark
the sun still rises
even through the rain

POSTED: Sun Nov 15, 2015 5:49 pm

Storm was taken aback by the sudden sharp vehemence in his friend’s tone. Milos was always gentle and softly spoken. Occasionally he might be nervous or hesitant, but the almost explosive ” T' hell with 'im..” took the winter storm eyed male by surprise. Storm forgot the irritation had Pepper, his lips quirking up in a slight grin, but as Milos continued Storm looked down and a little away. Storm had relied on the kindness of the Cormiers, and of his pack, but need him? It seemed to Storm he’d been very good demonstrating his failings and liabilities, but he said nothing, just enjoyed listening to his friend as he continued to speak.

Once more their conversation took an unexpected turn; Storm could see it coming. Milos fell silent, his thoughts clearly somewhere else, and his body making small movements that gave away his preoccupation. Finally though Milos spoke, and as he did Storm listened, his winter storm eyes intent and alert. The Magnate’s story was brief, but it ignited a feeling of kinship within the Cormier male. Here, sitting beside him was someone who’d shared their story with him, and could understand that trials of a difficult past. With the lack of words, Storm often found even greater comfort than most in physical touch, now, more than ever, he wanted to take hold of Milos in a silent reassurance. Two individuals, from different pasts, but they’d somehow managed to find this place. Their paths had been different, but the destination had been the same.

I wish someone had taken me away from my family sooner. he smiled, if a little wanly, trying to inject a little bit of merriment into this conversation. Storm found that he wanted to talk about his past though, wanted to tell Milos. He’d never felt this way before, he’d spoken about bits and pieces with his family, but perhaps here there was someone that could have a better understanding of what had happened?

I used to like singing. He flushed with embarrassment at the mere admission, and realised again that he’d never mentioned this to anyone before.

My dad always told me to stay quiet, that I must speak, mustn’t make a noise. He start gesturing again, but stopped, perhaps he wasn’t quite ready to talk about everything.

He would never let the crew see me getting hurt. I was his son, well that’s what he needed to the crew to believe.

Again he paused, gently rubbing his leg, but more out of habit than the need to ease any pain.

He used to tell me that I mustn’t make a noise. He would hurt me until I yelped or whined, and then he’d get really angry…

His gestures petered out, and for another long moment he stared into the distance, his gaze growing distant, and clearly travelling back in time. Finally he shook himself, breaking out of the reverie.

I…I don’t think I’ve ever told anyone that before…I don’t know why I told you that.

All of a sudden that perceived kinship seemed ridiculous, and Storm was embarrassed that he’d let his heart dictate how he spoke. It was as though the beating had made cracks in his mental barrier and the dam was cracking up.

Of course I’ll go ice skating with you again, it won’t be long before the two ladies put on their winter blankets and I won’t be able to dive. I’ll have to hold your hand to steady you though, like it or not.

User avatar
Draiko
Luperci Come sit by my fire

POSTED: Sat Nov 21, 2015 2:41 am

OOC: i friggin' love these two ahmahgah <33

With Storm's musings, a sadness clouded the sun in the Magnate's eyes and touched his dark lips heavily. Milos did not answer but gave a small, hesitant nod. He wished that too, for someone to have come along and whisked his friend away before his father's demons clawed and bruised and tore his body and his soul; stripped away his happiness and his confidence and his voice.

Their histories complemented one another: similar yet distinctly different. Milos would never wish his suffering upon anyone but he didn't -- couldn't -- believe that his past had been worse than Storm's. For the former thrall, all of Ulick's abuse and humiliation had only fueled the flames of rebellion. In contrast, it seemed the adopted Cormier had been beaten down and turned into a shell of his former self at the hands of his father's torment.

But they had both suffered and, as his heart throbbed painfully for his friend's suffering and his muscles tensed with carefully controlled anger, Milos realized that, for the first time since escaping the plantation, he had found a kindred spirit. The knowledge of this soothed his agitation and dispelled his worries.

In that moment, as Storm's gestures subsided and his thoughts seemed to suck him beneath the surface into reverie, Milos felt oddly free. Free from his concerns and his aversions and his memories; free from the scars and the nightmares and the guilt. "Reckon it's 'cause we know each other, Storm," he said at last, his soft voice caressing the silence gently. He was smiling again, a broad and genuine grin that touched his eyes and brought forth the sun. With his earlier worries calmed, the wolfdog lifted an arm and patted Storm's chest softly. "Right here." A thrill ignited his nerves and he pulled back away quickly.

Milos turned his head and stare forwards, his heart pounding. "Maybe better'n anyone," he said after a moment of silence, the adrenaline of is action subsiding. He glanced at Storm again, mirth on his face. "What would it take t' hear ya sing?"

[WC: 343]

User avatar
Mandi
Luperci Mate to Eliza but you'd become my candle in the dark
the sun still rises
even through the rain

Dead Topics