it's kinda like a cigarette smoking you

POSTED: Sat Feb 18, 2017 6:14 pm

Maugrim is used with permission. Private for Lorr.


A few days' trip into Amherst concluded with a spur-of-the-moment decision to walk the outer reaches of the Blackwoods upon his return, if only to experience for himself what it was his mothers had discouraged against in his youth. He knew of the forest's reputation for fog and difficult navigation, and so he did not challenge himself far beyond the treeline.

Observations came fast: With the sun shrouded by treetops, his headache was coaxed into moderate compliance but replaced with a chill that like his headaches, he couldn't shake. Neith smelled nothing of the ocean and little of Salsola itself. He heard words on the wind as if someone addressed him but found no one. He thought he heard footsteps. Saw shadows between the trees. Imagined something brushing between his feet, and jumped at the sight of a white and wispy thing that became one with the snow seconds later. An elk connected eyes with him, turned to escape in the trees, and faded before it distanced.

"Get out," something said in his head, a grim and masculine tone.

Grabbing for his rapier, Neith returned, "Who's there? Show yourself."

It seemed to scoff. "You don't have the eyes for it." A flash of an image—a creature sprouting leaves, as if he had not bones but twigs—appeared between the trees, startling Neith backwards and against a tree where he lost footing.

Persisting its manifestation if only out of surprise, the willowy spirit cocked its head. It reconsidered aloud, "Oh... Maybe you do."

"Demon," gasped Neith, pressed against the trunk and scrambling to his feet. His hands shook atop the rapier's hilt, struggling in his panic to pull the blade free of its sheath.

Confident, the blur of wisp and color began to close the space between them, slow and unhindered by brush. "I'm Maugrim," it said. "You and I are going to be very good friends."

Neith Heiwa ran for his life.

More than once he tripped over stick and stone and ice in his escape; he tore open his knees and drew blood and felt none of it, a coward fueled momentarily by adrenaline alone. He burst from the treeline where he thought to be a safe enough distance away collapsed and gasped for breath, hand to a tree, limbs trembling, composure lost. His migraine caught up with him all at once, and Neith leaned on the tree with a hand hooding light from his eyes, temples pulsing, and a haunted look about his eyes.

whose eyes you gonna use?

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

POSTED: Sun Feb 19, 2017 1:40 am

300 ·

Neith was not the first to encounter the boy in the Blackwoods; nor would he be the last. Her darkling daughter with eyes that pained her — though not so much during the dreary winter months — spent much of her time there (too much, she told her mate) and though she feigned ignorance as to what lurked deep within the woods, it would be a lie if she said she did not know who or what it was.

He was.

Osrath Eternity had been the one to bury him there, after all. It seemed so strange to her now that his birth and death had taken place well over a year ago now; it also seemed strange to consider how much like his father he would have been, if the rumors of his behavior were any indication. A penchant for trickery and a mind like quicksilver, with a rash streak and an unabiding loneliness that even his sister could not assuage.

It was true, what Lokr thought in his most private moments — not that she was privy to those thoughts these days — he would have been the perfect son in a home where masculinity was not revered.

For all of these reasons and a few more that she did not allow herself to spend much time considering, she did not often go to visit Maugrim’s cairn. Too often and she felt she would never be able to forgive the green-eyed man who’d killed him before he drew his first breath, too few visits and she thought he might resent her for failing to appreciate what he’d done with his death, if not his life.

All of this, she thought and felt and did privately.

In public, her son was quite simply dead. Many Salsolan’s did not even know that there had been a boy born alongside the two girls; some might have even forgotten by now that there were two girls at all, forgetting the odd-eyed young woman with a peculiar talent for uninhibited violence.

Riding her horse at a brisk pace through the mostly frozen marshland, carrion birds and prey animals alike took flight at her rapid approach, a flurry of black wings and the hoof beats of antlered ungulates heralding her approach.

Even if she had not seen the young man running from the woods as if his life depended on it, she still would not have ventured into the dark tangle of branches to their west. For now it was still too painful too much of the time. Guiding the oddly marked and remarkable stallion closer to the copse of trees, she looked for the source of his panic and found nothing discernible.

He looked like he’d seen a ghost.

You’re not the first to come running from these woods, She stated, maybe in an attempt to assure him that he wasn’t going insane. what did you see?


User avatar
Lorraine
Luperci Cavalleria, Vaquera
vitriolic

POSTED: Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:04 am

He couldn't shake the impossibility of what he'd seen. Exposed bone. A coat of unnatural shades. Springs and spruce, flesh and blood, twirled together made into one. A drift of body intangible through brush and snow and solid forms. Were these demons? Ghosts? Was it all inside his head? Was the unbelievable pain that were his migraines another piece of his imagination run wild and insane?

Like white-out conditions of a blizzard, the pulsation between his temples numbed his senses. He'd exerted himself too much in his escape and his condition punished him for it.

Still, Neith heard the herald of a steed and wings and, knowing himself but an Associate, made at once to remedy his presentation and turn low his eyes.

But the demons in his head—in form of visions and the characteristic ache—was not so quick to shake. He recognized not the voice of Osrath Eternity but the image, and the Heiwa found it just as unnerving as it had been in his youth. He and the Boss's daughter had never verbally interacted, and for good reason. What a fine situation this had become. Why her? Why did it have to be someone of such standing and influence to come across him at his worst?

Deep breaths, he told himself. Nothing's wrong. Nothing's wrong.

Steadying himself, Neith straightened his coat and hair and cleared his throat. "The shadows in the woods were playing tricks on me, my lady, nothing more." He wouldn't connect eyes. "I—I apologize for concerning you."

whose eyes you gonna use?

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

POSTED: Sat Mar 04, 2017 5:43 pm

000 ·

Osrath had a particular talent for finding others in odd, perhaps easily misconstrued situations.

Watching him closely, she remained at a distance and was instantly reminded of Lokr’s occasional headaches. They were blinding affairs of exploding stars and a relentless sensitivity to sound, and though they were not so common now as they had once been, occasionally one would strike and her absence would become prudent.

Neith said nothing of an excruciating pain in his skull, however, so she made no comment on what it was she saw.

The Blackwoods are like that. She said dismissively; her own mate did not hunt there, and there was the day she would never forget — two girls had gone in, and two young women had stumbled out, both shifting before their time. Following the Red Star event there had been lights in the forest, and she had avoided the place without knowing exactly why.

Strange things happened there and until an explanation was found, the Gamekeeper was not overeager to spend time there.

So, you don't need to apologize. Please, Her mouth quirked, and she laid a hand on his shoulder. allow me to escort you back to the Ruins. I'm sure your sisters are missing you; it was not something she looked forward to, encountering Delfina (a social climber with no ambition and a dwindling family name) and the absent-minded sister.

We haven't spoken much in the past, have we?


User avatar
Lorraine
Luperci Cavalleria, Vaquera
vitriolic

POSTED: Sat Mar 11, 2017 3:38 pm

A product of his environment, his was a naturally suspicious nature; with the residual paranoia from the Blackwoods hanging on as burrs would to fur, the young Heiwa struggled to save face. In the eyes of Salsola, Neith thought himself insignificant and easy to overlook. He had little more than a year and a half under his belt and a portion of it spent with his mothers at the Portland outpost. Expectations and a reputation were inherited to him by his high-ranking Salsolan mothers, sisters and biological father, but he himself had proved little yet as he stepped out of adolescence. Why would the Gamekeeper reach out to him? Why would she insist to remain by his side?

Her hand fell on his shoulder. Neith was forced to consciously maintain airs despite a desire to shy from the touch. Tipping his head high with a false but convincing pride (and blue-green eyes he still subtly refused to meet with hers), the Heiwa sucked breath in deep and made for an elegant, flawed smile. "If you would insist so, my lady, I—I would be honored."

In his skull between the pulsations of headache, Neith cursed the stutter that betrayed his poise. He motioned to the road ahead as if to allow her to walk ahead of him and accompanied her accordingly.

"Um. No, we haven't." He could remember little outside the occasional nod of the head in passing. Theirs were different worlds. "I hope you do not take offense. I understand you manage the livestock and stables. I... don't visit often. I am not terribly fond of animals. Until the war, though, I was with my mothers in Portland, helping with the books and stores."

A glance cast fast over his shoulder at the Blackwoods behind them, expecting a creature of muscle and moss to look back at him, but he saw nothing. "Have others seen things in those woods?"

whose eyes you gonna use?

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

POSTED: Mon Apr 03, 2017 12:50 pm

300 ·

It was easy to look at this young man — for he was young, being roughly half her current age — and forget what she had accomplished in the same amount of time; still, during the second half she felt as if she had accomplished comparatively little. Everything had seemed easier when those above her were not direct family members and she had little concern for their thoughts or feelings.

The fire of youth often burned brightly within Salsola, fueled by indoctrination and a hunger to prove oneself; maintaining it was far more difficult. She watched her darkling daughter, who sought to set herself apart from both parents, and was reminded keenly of herself. It seemed likely to her that they would find similar ends, in that their ambition would also be their Achilles heel. Somewhere, her pale-eyed daughter was facing the opposite problem.

Indra, her wanderer-child, seemed far likelier to crush the wheel than become a part of it.

I take no offense, Laughed the viper; ironic, considering how quick indeed she was to ire. we all have a purpose to serve; if everyone flocked to the stables, I'd find my hands overfull. And she spun many plates as it was, intent as she was on managing their household affairs until such a time as a new slave could be found to take them on.

With her horse alongside her and the lead-line between them swinging over the road, she felt strange at the prospect of speaking to someone behind her. Swiveling her ears in his general direction, she frowned at his question.

The woods were worse after the Starfall when the fire and winds roused angry spirits, but it has quieted some since then, thanks to our new Crone.

This was a half-truth, the same one she told herself when she remembered her daughters stumbling home on two legs, a secret kept between them.


User avatar
Lorraine
Luperci Cavalleria, Vaquera
vitriolic

POSTED: Sat Apr 08, 2017 12:49 pm

If all truly did have a purpose, what was his?

Neith wanted to think he was meant to mind books and stores: significant enough things, but out of a limelight he hadn’t sought anyway. It was not as if he did not have a strong enough personality, or that what he liked to do would never earn him respect or recognition. It was that things like gods and ghosts and demons were best left to others, and if Neith insisted the voices in his head and the visions in his eyes were nothing out of the ordinary as he very much hoped they were, he would never be pushed into learning more. So he decided his purpose was to sit at a desk and squint through headaches, and convinced himself he was happy with that. He could convince others, too.

He had been young when the star fell, almost too young to truly grasp its devastation. His memories surrounding were more concrete than the image of the star in the sky: the death of the first Crone, namely, and how shaken Salsola had seemed thereafter.

“Angry spirits?” he asked, and unconsciously glanced his shoulder back at the woods. “Angry... how, if I might ask? Were they visible?”

He pictured Loki standing in place of Siv, staring down demons like the one he’d seen, and Neith thought himself definitively going mad.

whose eyes you gonna use?

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

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