treasure maps, fallen trees

POSTED: Wed Jan 18, 2017 10:07 am

The Heiwa couldn't fight—but he was dextrous and intelligent, and he could maintenance the traps throughout the borders as his contribution to warding the pack of his birth. Neith was a planner, a tactician, a snake among equally slithering brethren but who preferred to watch and wait and direct fangs more sharper than his own to strike.

But he was young and inexperienced, and these were only preferences of a young man yet to weather enough years to know his true strengths in conflict. To add to it, his headaches posed a risk: They were becoming more frequent, and would only take a sudden surge in pain for him to momentarily drop defenses and take a blade through the heart.

Standing over one of the emptied dropfall traps, he shivered at the thought of it and pressed white-tipped fingers at the dread in his chest spreading like ice. Shaking it off, Neith took a knee and looked down into the pit, reading the footsteps in the snow spilled inside and the scraping along the walls. Someone had fallen in, yet so too had they gotten out.

A hand atop the hilt of his rapier, the Heiwa straightened up and pulled at the fur on his chin in thought. There was no way out of those pits without help. He glanced around, humming to himself pensively. More of those radical wolves, he thought, eyes following the disturbed snow at the pit's edge and picturing someone reaching down to hoist up their comrade.

Whomever they were, they were long gone by that midday. With a few bruises, for sure. Neith rearranged scavenged branches across the pit's mouth and disguised it with snow and brush. He found a sprung snare further through the woods—and the severed rope and netting partially buried in snow.

Neith snorted. He closed his eyes a moment to settle the spinning of his head resulting from the brightness of the snow, then reached down and sorted through the torn netting, cut by a blade and escaped from. Surely it could be sewn back together.

whose eyes you gonna use?

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Lin
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THE GOOD DOCTOR

POSTED: Thu Jan 26, 2017 5:51 pm

429 words. I'm gonna backdate this just so it takes place before this thread. :U

Only so much time could be spent in prayer, searching for answers through divination, before it became impossible not to act. Loki, too, was no warrior who could defend his pack; he was a witch, a simple trapper. That he held spiritual power over most of Salsola meant little when their enemies were so unafraid. He could not hurt what was not caught.

Even before the raid under the full moon, Loki had found multiple broken traps. Some indicated that pairs had gone along the borders, setting them off, and in places blood and fur was left behind. Others had been spotted by a keener eye, deadfall stones harmlessly dropped on the earth, snares cut, and in places the entrails of prey spread across the snow.

When they came upon one of these instances, Pierrat lamented the lost meal, and griped when Loki struck him humorlessly.

"I'd like to see them disarm the tension trap," hissed the coywolf as he stomped through the snow, his plain dark cloak billowing behind him. Rubbing his cheek, the dog followed with a roll of his eyes.

<A wonder that they lay any finger on your majesty,> he said. "Their fingers, they burn off, then they die," he added when Loki whirled to sear him with his pale gaze. He added a flourish of his digits to emphasize this.

"Are you high?"

"No, lord," sighed Pierrat. <Would that I were.> He followed closely. "I am not made for this war. I am old man, you know."

Loki snorted. He was not made for this either, he knew. At least this time there were no dead women on their borders--just injured friends. He frowned, and wondered not for the first time just what they were dealing with, what--surely, this had to be--Salvia's dream had warned them of.

He had an inkling, but he did not like it, because it was nothing he could remember.

He turned toward one of his net traps, so distracted by his anger and his theories that he did not notice the scent or tracks of the other. When he pushed branches aside and landed his gaze on the silver-rust figure bent by the net, he froze, blinked, and stared in surprise.

To his credit, the Crone recovered neatly and flashed a pearly smile. "Neith."

Behind him, Pierrat cursed as thorns raked his thick fur then stopped, adjusting his tattered magician's scarf before he saw the boy, and uttered a laughing burst of French at Loki's expense. <God, another one of you.>
With your feathers and thorns sticking to my hide
Salsola
DEAD
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Raze
Luperci raven & dove
trickster god
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POSTED: Tue Jan 31, 2017 3:34 pm

No prob. This is short and derp, sorry. :c


Silver ears swiveled, catching an approaching conversation long before he was found. Their words he could not make out, but their voices, inflections? With some certainty he recognized one of them, and following a long and surprisingly nervous sigh—why was he nervous?—Neith climbed to his feet with torn netting in hand. He took a moment to straighten his coat and dust at his knees. when he heard his name he turned and took in the sight of his biological father and the French dog always at his heels.

Neith's eyes dropped, then closed. There was a bow of his head. "My Crone." A squint and an uncertain pinching of the brows. That hadn't changed, right? He hadn't heard it changed. But that choice of terminology felt awkward, but calling him by name or by "Uncle" when he very much wasn't anymore hardly worked either. Calling him "Father"? Out of the question.

"And Pierrot. It's, uh... It's good to see you both." Feeling strange, Neith held up the net. "Half the traps around here have been sprung, but I can't tell if they're being sabotaged or escaped. I haven't seen anyone."

He tossed the net to the ground and shook his head in disbelief. "What is going on around here?"

whose eyes you gonna use?

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Lin
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POSTED: Mon Feb 06, 2017 10:53 pm

The gallant rusted-silver youth dipped his head and greeted him by rank rather than name, and the Crone waved his hand dismissively at once, smiling. “You can call me Loki,” he insisted lightheartedly. “We’re friends, aren’t we?” Or at least the man was a friend of the family, though he hadn’t forged a bond with his only-biological children since they’d become adults. Perhaps this was the reason for the stiffness, the distance, on Loki’s part as much as Neith’s careful submission had been.

After all, Neith had been away for some time, and children and their ideals were often altered by maturation. There was a reason that the Outpost, for all that it was a reprieve from Salsola-proper’s strictness and expectation, was a place of lesser status. Being away changed things, and certainly left one out of the loop—suicide in Salsola’s cultural game.

“It’s good to see you too,” he added, genuinely, as his eyes sized up the other’s fine clothing and grooming. “You look well.” Or well enough, if worried, a little tense above the brow.

And the cause for this was clear enough, as Neith lifted the cut net. Loki at once grimaced and reached for it, running a thumb over frayed ends, and let out an irritated sigh. “Half of them sabotaged, half of them escaped. The strangers who are attacking us”—light blue eyes swept over the young man again, knowing that he too had been a victim—“know we have traps. They’re helping each other out, or just outright destroying what they find.” He uttered a growl then stared at the grounded net.

“I don’t like it. I don’t like that I don’t know what it is yet.”
With your feathers and thorns sticking to my hide
Salsola
DEAD
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Raze
Luperci raven & dove
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POSTED: Wed Feb 08, 2017 1:10 pm

Loki, the Crone insisted, and so "Loki," Neith corrected himself. "Yes, of course." A stiffness in his tone and posture insisted, though Neith pretended otherwise, she he tried not to dwell on discomfort.

"Well enough," Neith remarked. He pulled at the collars of his coat with a flash of a handsome pride more characteristic of himself. "The outpost fares well, though news travels slowly. I've come up to—uh, get away for a while, and with things like this happening," he shook the net in his hands, "it hasn't been safe to return yet."

Though, with Ondine's interest and insight into his condition, Neith wasn't rushing a departure.

He handed the severed net to the Crone and folded his arms, considering the situation. Enemies to Salsola were to be expected. But enemies knowledgable on the Kingdom's secrets spoke of a vulnerability Salsola as a whole took great measures to avoid.

The concern read clear across the Associate's face. "As I said, news travels slow. Has something happened up here that would have drawn their guff and guile?" Snow-tipped fingers tapped along his arm. "Whether we have enemies goes without saying. but most of them are smart enough not to play with fire."

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POSTED: Wed Feb 15, 2017 10:06 am

Loki smiled at the youth’s pull at his collar, then pricked his ears at the conclusion. “You are hoping to return to the Outpost, then?” he questioned, eyes carefully searching the other’s blue-green ones.

There was no judgment in the question, only thoughtful curiosity. Some did fare better away from Salsola-proper; it had sounded like his niece and her mate had done well for themselves while they were away, though their son’s presence in Salsola told a more complex story. One could not have everything, Loki realized, and wondered when his family would not feel so separated.

A hint of sorrow touched his expression, and he allowed it to persist rather than hiding it away. Let Neith think what he wanted of it.

“Not that I’m aware of,” the trapmaker answered, looking up from the net to study the Associate’s thoughtful gesture. “I consult the gods, the runes, and I haven’t learned anything that would help us. But—” Then he stopped. Salvia’s dream was not something he should share, but perhaps its message of doom was enough. “I am afraid that this will be war.”
With your feathers and thorns sticking to my hide
Salsola
DEAD
User avatar
Raze
Luperci raven & dove
trickster god
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POSTED: Sat Feb 18, 2017 6:02 pm

"Perhaps. I haven't decided yet." Pensive eyes browsed idly over the net and beyond to the forest. "If there is a need for me here I would remain, but I suppose that depends on whether someone is already minding the books, stores and wares. I haven't much talent for anything else. My sister is helping me research something as well, which I wasn't quite expecting when I arrived. I'd like to see that through before I were to go back, at the very least."

Loki spoke of the dictation by gods and runes and an insufficient result, and for a moment Neith's eyes wandered to Pierrat with nothing to read within them. At mention of war, however, the Heiwa snapped back.

"War?" A hand fell and closed upon the hilt of his rapier as if Neith had been blessed with knowledge to wield it since the attack on their cart. "That's, that's quite the... If your gods have said nothing, what about this has signaled war? Surely we've had organized attacks like these before without consequence, and while they've sprung a lot of traps, this is why we have them."

Briefly Neith rubbed at his face with brows pulled and eyes distancing into a stark look. "War. I wasn't expecting war. I don't know what to do about war."

whose eyes you gonna use?

User avatar
Lin
Luperci
CENTRIFUGE
lost in the static
THE GOOD DOCTOR

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