A page of what's to come

AW | Piren

POSTED: Wed Jun 13, 2018 8:02 pm

Milos woke abruptly to the large, toffee eyes of his youngest son staring silently at him. "Papa!" Percival yapped with excitement, his tail a blur behind him. "You're awake so can we go now?"

"Percy?" Milos blinked. Children, he had long since learned, did not understand that the transition between sleeping and wakefulness took longer and longer the older one got. Furrowing his brows, Milos concentrated on pulling himself out of the depths of sleep and into the waking world.

Grunting softly, the Quartermaster shifted his body gently and leaned his weight against one elbow. Still groggy from the lingering effects of sleep, Milos rubbed his face with the palm of his other hand and, peeking out from between his fingers, he could tell from the dim light filtering into their room that dawn was still some ways off. "Percy." A yawn interrupted him. "Percy, it en't even mornin' yet."

"But you're awake, though," the child pointed out, the threat of disappointment in his voice. "And you promised."

Rising to a sit, Milos regarded his son silently. It was true: he had promised Percival that they would go to Piren when they woke up. His lips curled around an amused smile. "Reckon I did," he replied and feigned a stretch before falling forward suddenly, scooping the little youngster up in his arms amidst squeals of delight and half-hearted protests.

"Papa!" he giggled as Milos rose to his feet and carried him from the bedroom and into the heart of their cottage. "You pretended! No fair, Papa!"

Slipping out of the cottage and out into the cool, pre-dawn air, Milos gave in to Percival's lighthearted demands to be set down and closed the door behind him. Then, with Percy following after his father on clumsy feet, the two Parhelions departed from Fiskebyn up toward Piren.

When they arrived, the sun had broken free of the horizon and was casting a shimmering sheen over the surface of Black Lake. Set against the rising sun, a silhouette stood at the edge of a dock, a fishing pole in its hands. "Papa? Who's that?" Percival asked, hesitation in his voice.

Milos narrowed his eyes, but when the winds changed and blew the figure's scent their way, his concentration cleared and a smile broke across his face. "That'll be 'Seko, Percy," he said to his son. And then, in greeting: "Mornin', 'Seko! How're th' fish bitin'?"

Turning, Taseko greeted them with a kind smile and a nod. "I've had better mornings," he replied with a shrug. "But maybe my luck will change with visitors. Come and join me."

At the invitation, Percival wagged his tail and moved forward ahead of his father but stopped short of the dock, looking back at Milos with reservation.

OOC: Join Milos, Percival, and Taseko as they go fishing and (eventually) talk animism!

[WC — 469]


Loners
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Mandi
Moderator Luperci Mate to Eliza but you'd become my candle in the dark Little Bandit
can you pull down the dawn?

POSTED: Thu Jul 12, 2018 9:53 am

His father made a sweeping gesture with one arm, and the smile on his face was reassuring. "It's all right, Perce," he said gently to the boy. "Might feel a bit wobbly but it's safe."

Putting a tentative paw on the weather-worn wood, Percival took several slow and cautious steps onto the dock. His body was all stretched out and held low to the ground. Taseko watched with soft amusement twinkling in his eyes. It felt solid and seemed safe, but when his father stepped onto the dock with him, the whole thing shuddered and creaked and Percival froze.

"All docks are like that, Percy," Taseko assured the youngster. "It won't break."

Milos nodded, looking down at his tensed-up son with bright eyes. "C'mon, Perce. Ya can do it, son."

Percival glanced up at his father's face. His little nails were digging into the soft wood and his muscles were taut, but he trusted his father. Step by slow step, the puppy made his way across the dock to the very end, where Taseko sat at the edge. His father, too, lowered himself to a sit and dangled his legs in the cool waters. Percival sat between them and felt very proud of himself.

The youth was quiet as the adults talked, watching the still lake and listening to the sounds of morning birdsong. He wasn't sure how long it had been after they had joined Taseko before the Herdsman felt a bite at the end of his fishing line and, with a sound of surprise, began to pull his catch in while Percival watched on with wide, excited eyes.

OOC: okay I'll keep this one for myself. :D

[WC — 278]

The Shoal
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Mandi
Luperci we were infinite; there was no time in those days
timshel

POSTED: Thu Jul 19, 2018 11:08 pm

Taseko tightened his big hands on the fishing pole, blue eyes narrowing in slight concentration. It wasn't that the fish on the end of it was a particularly big one, and Taseko's size and inate strength would have held out against some of the bigger ones in any case. But he was not inclined to make the process a long one. In hunting, when he did it, and in fishing too, he did his best to be precise.

He reeled the line in with gentle movements, careful not to dislodge the first bite of the day, but the procedure went quickly. Lowering the pole to waist height as the last of the line was tugged in, He reached out and caught it off the end of the line. It flapped helplessly, tiny in Taseko's massive palm, and he lowered it to show to Percival. "Too small," he decided with a little glint of amusement in the warm soft eyes. "This one would barely feed a pup. There's no sense killing a thing like this." Up went the hand. Scales shimmering in the pre-dawn dimness, the fish disappeared gratefully into the water.

Taseko settled back into place with his rod and cast again, with the air of someone content to stay there all day if undisturbed. "Maybe your luck will be better than mine," he said to Milos, with a shrug of broad shoulders and an unconcerned twitch of one ear.

OOC: Any mistakes mine, not Taseko's, so do point them out :)

[WC: 240]

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Demigold
Luperci

POSTED: Sat Jul 21, 2018 10:20 am

The anticipation – brief as it was in reality – felt impossibly long for the young Guppy. He watched and he whined and he wiggled, eager to see the prize at the end of the line. To keep his son safe from taking a spill into the lake, Milos knelt on the dock and, with an amused smile on his face, wrapped a solid arm around the front of Percial's chest. "Steady now," the elder Parhelion murmured, watching Taseko work.

When at last the fish was brought in, Percival's mouth fell open. The fish – small and insubstantial – flopped and flicked at the end of the line. "We gonna eat that?" the child asked, never once taking his eyes of the frantic fish until Taseko answered. Then, lifting his large nutmeg eyes upwards, he cocked his head. "Too smoll?" he echoed, looking back at the fish the Herdsman presented to him. Percy nosed it curiously and it smacked him gently back with a flick of its tail. The Guppy pulled back and watched as Taseko released it back into the lake.

Settling back into companionable comfort, Milos, too, relaxed. He grinned at the Herdsman knowingly and held out his hands, offering to try his luck at fishing. "Reckon it won't hurt t' try," he replied. Milos was better at hunting land animals with a spear, but he could hold his own with a fishing rod.

Percival, meanwhile, was still looking into the lake as though searching for the little fish that had been returned to its depths. "But why?" he asked Taseko at last, looking at the Outrigger curiously. He didn't understand why there was no sense in killing the small fish when he could have still eaten it.

OOC: Everything looks great! <3 To keep this thread moving more smoothly, I'll only be responding with Percival + including Milos in his posts. c:

[WC — 290]

The Shoal
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Mandi
Luperci we were infinite; there was no time in those days
timshel

POSTED: Sat Jul 21, 2018 12:24 pm

The Herdsman returned Milos's grin with an easy one of his own, relinquished the fishing rod, and leaned back with a hand bracing him on the cool wooden planks behind him. "If your catches are as small as that, I suppose fish for dinner will have to wait," he murmured with an easy lack of worry. Food was, in the summertime when prey was plentiful, the caribou were fed well, and the lakes were clear and unfrozen, not as grave a concern as it could sometimes be.

He fell into quiet thought for a moment or two after Percy's question, allowing the silence to stretch itself out while he considered how best to answer. It was an easy response for him, but, while he had experience with the pack's children, he found himself a bit less steady on his feet with them, conversationally speaking.

But finally he spoke. "If," he said, "you caught ten of those little fishes, and made them into a meal, you could feed yourself and give your father there a tiny light snack. But," now he raised the hand that had been bracing him on the planking so he could demonstrate the size of a new fish, "if you caught five fish three times as big, you could feed all three of us." He paused again, studying the pup as he marshaled his words. "It would be disrespectful to disturb ten spirits when we could choose only to disturb five, and eat better off those five fish anyway, don't you think?"

He brushed stray strands of mane back away from his muzzle as they were blown by a gentle puff of air, and glanced back down into the gentle ripples of the lake. This sort of consideration had been ingrained into him from a very young age - but even so, he could still remember wanting to be gratified now rather than wait, patiently, for a better and less messy reward later on. It was part of being a puppy.

OOC: Sounds good! :)

WC: 334
Last edited by Taseko on Fri Jul 27, 2018 10:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Demigold
Luperci

POSTED: Fri Jul 27, 2018 8:02 pm

Taking the fishing rod from Taseko's hands, Milos pulled in the line until he had the hook pinched between his index finger and thumb. "Reckon so," he agree through a warm chuckle. While his son assaulted the Herdsman with the endlessly infuriating question of why?, the elder Parhelion threaded the hook through the bait and cast the line. Percival gave his father only a handful of cursory glances throughout this whole process, his focus primarily on the blue-eyed wolfdog.

The silence that followed made the youngster restlessly impatient. He watched Taseko closely and fidgeted as he waited, scooting his rump and wriggling his tail and flopping his front feet against the weathered wooden dock. Percival was just about to give the Herdsman a high-pitched yap, just to remind him that he was still there and waiting for an answer, when Taseko finally responded.

He listened, his tail sweeping across the dock. "Ten is a big number!" he commented proudly. But as Taseko continued, Percival's wagging slowed and he furrowed his brows in consideration. "Five is littler though..." The elder wolfdog's words and the gestures of his hands echoed in his head. Numbers were hard and the little Parhelion felt desperate to chew on something to relieve the frustration he was feeling.

The second explanation that Taseko gave, however, yielded better understanding. A nod had his little head bobbing. "Yeah," he said simply, his voice high in that tone of young children. "'Cause the River Goddess would be madded, huh?" Though his understanding was still lacking, Percival had latched onto a different topic. "'Seko, why do fishies got spirits?" He canted his head until one of his floppy ears flipped inside out. "Do you got spirits, too?"

Swiveling his head, Milos glanced pleasantly at Taseko, prepared to jump to the man's rescue if needed.

OOC: Sorry for my slow! <3

[WC — 309]

The Shoal
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Mandi
Luperci we were infinite; there was no time in those days
timshel

POSTED: Fri Jul 27, 2018 10:21 pm

Taseko gave a gentle shrug of his broad shoulders, settling more comfortably and stretching both legs out in front of him. One hand absently tugged at his own ear although it, of course, laid as it should and he wasn't wiggling madly around to make it do otherwise. "True," he said. "The river can be devastating if she gets angry." The low rolling voice gave the words a more threatening edge than Taseko would have intended. He wasn't afraid of Sedna, though he respected her, and it was respect and not fear that he intended to suggest to the young pup. But his mind drifted back to the floods as he spoke, and those memories lent the words more of a bite. "But she isn't the only one. Even little fish spirits can make themselves known if they're upset."

He took in a breath, the scent of Krokar, sweet water plants and moss, and continued amiably on from the worrying prospect of piscine retribution to the pup's next question. "I don't know why they have spirits," he said. It was a question that had honestly never occurred to him. It was a fact of life, the same way he knew that if he swam he would be wet, and if he was hungry he should eat. So he found himself in some confusion. He absently tugged at the ear again, then shook his head. "If they didn't, they would be strange and out of place. Everything has a spirit. Including me," he added in answer to the other question. "And you. So we're able to move and think. It's the same with the fish. And it's the reason the plants grow." He smiled a little. "Does that seem strange to you?" He remained at easy rest during this explanation, still to Percy's movement, with the exception of the occasional movement of his hand to emphasise nature's mobile ... well, nature.

But his eyes cut briefly back over to the water as there was a hint of movement in the depths, away from the dock and below the surface, and something yanked at the end of Milos's line. He rubbed his palms together and watched curiously, ear still cocked towards Percy.

OOC: No worries! Also fixed some rogue bolding in the last one, sorry about that!

WC: 370
Last edited by Taseko on Sat Jul 28, 2018 10:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Demigold
Luperci

POSTED: Sat Jul 28, 2018 8:45 am

The rumble in Taseko's voice was felt in Percival's little chest and the Guppy lowered his ears with some concern. He was too young yet to understand the broad scale of just how devastating nature could be, but he had seen how quickly the rivers could flow when it rained and how choppy Sister Lake could get in storms. Yeah," he agreed through a whine. "Devistaming." It was obvious he had no idea what he was saying, but it felt necessary to say something.

When Taseko shifted the conversation to little fish spirits, Percival immediately felt soothed. And also very curious. He lifted his head again and wagged his tail, his mouth falling open. "Little fish spirits can?" he asked in awe. "How?" Again, the youth tilted his head.

Listening to all of this while he waited for a bite on his line, Milos couldn't help but feel as though his heart could hardly get any more full. He glanced now and again back at his son and Taseko, thinking how not even Logan or Bramble had seemed as interested in this topic as Percy seemed to be.

A look of fierce concentration pinched at Percival's face. "Does Mama know?" he asked innocently, looking from Taseko to his father.

Milos chuckled. "Reckon you'll just have t' ask her, Perce." Not that it would have done his son any good to, that Percival hadn't thought to ask him felt telling to the elder Parhelion. Though the two had a distinct bond, Percival was certainly more of a momma's boy.

"Okay," he said, drawing out the end of the word a little in mild frustration. The feeling was quickly swept away, however, as Taseko continued. Like someone slowly opening a door to the outside, with every additional piece of information the Herdsman gave him, Percival felt his spirituality expanding just a little more. He thought about what Taseko was telling him. "No, but..." He didn't know how to articulate what he was feeling. "If fishies and plants got spirits like me an' you then... do they gets hurted like me an' you, too?"

A tug at the end of his line drew Milos' attention away from his son and back to the lake. He held fast, waiting. The second tug was stronger, more frantic. "Got one!" he chirped, pulling in the line carefully, but with as much speed and firmness as he felt he could manage without losing his catch. Whatever might have been happening behind him between Taseko and Percival was lost on the Captain as he wrestled with the creature on the other end of his line.

Finally, lifting up the line, the wriggling, shimmering body of a striped bass. Milos pulled the fish toward them and glanced at Taseko in a silent request for assistance.

OOC: I adore your writing! <3 Sorry this got a bit long, lololol. You absolutely do not have to match the length! c:

[WC — 474]

The Shoal
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Mandi
Luperci we were infinite; there was no time in those days
timshel

POSTED: Sat Jul 28, 2018 3:18 pm

One curious eye on Milos and the contest with the fish on his line, Taseko never let the conversation lull. At least, not beyond the pace at which his conversation generally went, which was a lazy, ambling, hot summer day sort of speed at the best of times. It wasn't that he was stupid, just that he liked to think and even when he had gathered his words, one got the impression that he considered them until the very moment the last syllable dropped off the tip of his tongue. The contrast between the giant wolfdog and his small Guppy companion could not have been more marked. But he answered earnestly, almost as pleased as Milos in his way to see a Guppy taking an interest in the spiritual world which he, Taseko, knew was far broader than the singular River Goddess.

"They know their homes much better than we do," he said. "An angry spirit might coax the fish into different rivers if we didn't give it its due. Then we could fish and fish this lake and never bring home even a tiny guppy." His face remained unworried, and a gentle smile curled the corners of his mouth as he continued. "But that's the worst outcome. We have good fishing here because we treat the spirits as they deserve. We can't leave them alone because we need to eat as much as they do. But we can be kind."

He had, he felt, led into the Guppy's other question without too much of a fumble, which was good because Milos's fish wasn't a bad size. As Milos wrestled it in close to the dock, Taseko ran a padded palm across his face in thought. "And yes. It does mean they can be hurt. Anything can be hurt if you treat it wrong." He watched the fish appear and unfolded his frame from its lazing position, kneeling up closer to the edge. "If we keep this fish, we'll have to kill it. But we can make that as painless as possible, and give the spirit the respect it's owed when it leaves the body. see?"

He reached out to help drag the fish out of the water, extending the claws on his other hand for a quick, clean kill when it appeared. "You can learn how to do this with any animal you hunt. ." He cast Milos a little wink and a nod while the fish flapped and was withdrawn from the lake. "Your dad knows a fair bit about hunting and fishing. I'm sure he'll show you all of this when you get old enough to shift."

OOC: Hope that's the right sort of help ;) Also thank you! Percy is adorable :D

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Demigold
Luperci

POSTED: Thu Aug 02, 2018 8:58 pm

A dark cloud of worry passed over nutmeg eyes as Taseko spoke and, with every careful syllable that slipped past the his lips, Percival's mouth hung ever lower. A spirit could lure restless, unhappy fish from one home to another, drawing them further and further away from Krokar until nothing was left? Unbidden, a small quake ran down the Guppy's body, from nose to tail, and Percy sought comfort in the way that Taseko remained smiling. "Yeah," the child agreed, his little voice firm, but still small and perhaps a little uncertain. "We can be kind." Now, more than ever, Percival felt that this was of the utmost importance.

Toiling silently against the flickering, wavering line, Milos kept one ivory-crested ears planted firmly on the Herdsman and his son, though his attention was, by and large, on his hopeful catch. Where the fishing line connected with the dark surface of the lake, small ripples and tiny swells surged forth and distorted the reflection of the sun. Percival turned his head on his father and on the struggle of his catch, feeling torn between the excitement of fishing and the curiosity of what Taseko was sharing with him. "Anything?" he asked, glancing back at the Herdsman thoughtfully.

But as the fish drew near and Taseko knelt to help his father, Percival could only watch. The fish broke the surface of the lake, its scales shimmering against the light of the sun as it wriggled and writhed, and the youngster jumped back, his hackles lifting instinctively. And then, with one swift motion of the Herdsman's claws, the fish's life was claimed and it fell still. Slowly, Percy's fur flattened against his frame and he stretched his neck forward, sniffing at the deceased prey. "It's deaded now?" he asked, lifting his eyes at Taseko, instead of his father.

Chuckling gently, Milos caught the Outrigger's wink and moved rested the fish on the dock. Percival glanced at his father. "Will you, Papa?" the child asked eager, his little tail wagging furiously.

"A'course I will, Perce. But in th' meantime, ya outta listen t' what 'Seko's got t' say." Milos lifted his sunny eyes from his child to the Herdsman and smiled warmly.

Percival barked cheerfully an affirming response, then turned his head to Taseko expectantly. "We can all eat this fishy, huh?" he said, smiling. "So the River Goddess won't be madded, right, 'Seko?"

OOC: It's the perfect sort of help! C: D'awwww thank yoooou!

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The Shoal
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Luperci we were infinite; there was no time in those days
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