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Maska Ahote

The horse was uneasy. Its legs moved restlessly about despite the fact that they were holding their position at the border. Maska, however, was calmness reincarnate. The only thing which moved about him was his cloak, dancing with every little movement of his equine companion. The four figures stood tall, each on their own horse and some with their spiritual companions at the ready. Sikyatavo's nose twitched almost nervously, and if you had not known him, you'd think it was the case. Rather, the twitch was that of impatience, and he glanced upwards at Maska, anticipating action. There was no time to linger here.

Glancing around at his surroundings, the gray wolf quickly made the decision to press further and cross AniWaya's scented border. After all, this land was as much his own as anyone else's: he doubted any True AniWayan had not been welcomed with open arms. To his knowledge, quite a few had come here from the Great Tribe, mostly family or close relations to the Utinas or the Amaras. There was no need for caution with three Guardians as his companions either way, and he did not fear any problems from outsiders who might fail to recognise his seal. One couldn't know how well such outsiders had been taught in AniWayan ways, and he had heard tales of Dawali's flexibility from those who had traveled here and back. Still, he doubted that the red wolf was dumb: he would surely recognise Maska's seal, as would his "Council".

The gray wolf lifted his hand and he made a sharp, whistling sound, signalling his horse to keep moving, and Wematin and the Guardians to move forward along with him. Scents would easily lead them to the tribe's dwellings, but the easier signal to follow was the smoke from their Great Fire, dim against the evening sky. Soon, its light would appear to them through the vegetation, and they would easily find the AniWayans.


The journey had been long, and yet otherwise uneventful, the horses fully tacked and laden with supplies. The black man stood with his three Guardians to the rear, silent, and watching Maska with a close eye. While some would look at Wematin and think him the proverbial elephant in the room, he could disappear into the shadows like smoke, and for this reason he was assigned to Maska with Nehale and Shadi; he was a dangerous man. Despite his close watch on Maska, he would've thought there no need for it so close to the branch tribe's borders; they were a part of the Great Tribe, if not lesser in stature and purity. But orders were orders, plain and simple; his opinion did not matter unless asked.

As Maska's horse took its first step over the boundary and the man gave the whistle, Wematin gave a covert signal with his own hand to urge his two companions forward into an arrow formation respectfully behind Maska, guarding his flanks and rear. Such a procession would surely warn anyone who meant harm away, and alert those who meant no harm that the man at the front was of importance. Wematin had no knowledge or thirst of it of how this branch tribe fared; it was not his duty to know it, judge it, or assimilate himself to it. His eyes remained on Maska all the while as his companions scanned the sides, but he knew they all smelled the fire burning as soon as the faint traces of smoke hit their noses. At the very least this didn't change; the Great Fire here was a child of the Great Fire in the Great Tribe--no need to wonder or worry. Wematin's ears pricked forward when his keen eyes caught sight of a flash of red--not of the fire--coming towards them, quickly making him pull his horse from directly behind Maska to stand a bit off the to side should he be needed to jump down immediately. He doubted the need for such a course, but his training dictated that caution was better than foolish ignorance.

Guardian walks. "Guardian talks." Guardian thinks.


They'd traveled far into the tribe's lands. He'd observed them for a moment, hesitating within the safety of the taller trees. But, without a doubt hey could smell him nearby, and he could not linger. Gvihita had taken off from their home in the Town Hall and led him to them, and seeing them now he understood why. These were figures he recognised, and though the councilman would not know Dawali specifically, he eould know of Dawali's family. More importantly, Dawali knew him. Why had Chief Achak sent a councilman with Guardians? Not daring to wait any longer, he approached the councilman and his three Guardians, hesitantly, but also with a firm hand on Belle's neck. Gvihita sat atop his shoulder clearly visible, and he felt uneasy for that reason. Still, he maintained a confident posture as he slowly rode closer to them, though perhaps not quite as confident as Maska's.

Silently, he greeted the councilman with a nod, all the while attempting to cling to his rank as Chief in this tribe. There was some remnant of his upbringing which now stabbed at his spine; one did not keep one's tail and neck straight in the presence of a councilman. Any sensible wolf from the Great Tribe would pay an Ahote proper respect, and particularly of Maska's rank, but... This was Dawali's place, and he tried to show them that they were the guests inside his borders. It was difficult, and after a few sharp glances from the Guardians he lowered his tail ever so slightly, dropping in behind Maska and letting him lead the way. Gvihita clicked her beak in his ear, disappointed, and abruptly took off in the direction of the Village. In all likelihood she was fetching Ralla, and Dawali did not know whether it was a good thing or not. Failure burned his already russet ears. While not visible, Dawali was certain they could feel it, for one of the black-cloaked warriors smirked as they continued onward towards the Village.

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Gvhihita came to the observatory with all the grace afforded spirit guides, but Ralla knew something was wrong the moment that she landed next to Nootau on the wooden perch that stood next to the writing desk. Gvhihita did not often show herself to any others, and Ralla had only briefly seen her when she had joined the tribe, although that had been the aura and not the form. But she knew it to be Dawali's spirit guide from that same aura, and was further worried when Nootau--normally so calm--began to shift from foot to foot. Without words she knew to stand, and was then led by the two outside and down the tree hut. Previously she had been writing--having blocked out her spiritual sense, which she had learned to control, in order to concentrate--but now she could feel something coming; something that did not bode well at all.

Nootau kept close to Ralla on her shoulder, but Gvhihita led on until an aura so malicious it could not be ignored appeared. The few hills that dotted the open expanse of green had previously hidden them, but now Ralla could see the five riders--including Dawali--coming closer. Standing there, she felt a chill go up and down her spine despite the summer warmth, and she fiddled with the necklaces on her neck incessantly as they neared. The children were about the village somewhere, and she was very glad that at least they weren't there. The four strangers she could see were similar in a scent she knew somewhat... The Great Tribe? Songan and Chitsa had smelled of it when they arrived, although it was not all that different from AniWaya's. What puzzled her was that Dawali seemed to be being led rather then leading. Her lips pressing into a thin line, the white wolfess observed the procession and then the etiquette that was required of her. Whoever the grey man was Dawali had deferred to him, and this troubled the mother. She stepped to the side and nodded her head--reluctantly--as she walked in time to the horse's steps, taking them into the heart of the village and thus to the Town Hall. Still, she looked back to the grey man first and felt a deep pang of danger--of threats to come--and looked past him to Dawali, forest green eyes posing a question and stating a fear. She did not like this man, and his three companions were like ice to the air around them. Even Nootau sent Ralla an image of icy blue; the emotion-color of discomfort and worry. As they dismounted their horses, Ralla took the reins and parked each one on a wooden bar meant for just that before opening the way to the Town Hall for the strangers and Chief Dawali. With a deep breath to calm her nerves, she went inside after them.

She did not know why these strangers made her so uneasy; but the spirits never lied.

Moon walks. "Moon talks." Moon thinks.

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Table by Meghann!


[Image: Ralla_by_Nina2.png]

Welcome to AniWaya!

Hooray! Check out all of this fun stuff:

  • Have a look at the Aniwaya Territories for interesting areas to explore.
  • Completing tasks in the season game offer collectibles, tables, avatars, icons, art and titles. Have a look!
  • You can collect points from your posts and trade them for various prizes, including art.
  • Remember to look into AniWaya's culture and laws!
  • Do you have a horse? Add it to the official stables overview, here.
  • Do you have a spirit guide already? Add it to our current listings, here.

Need help? Confused about AniWaya stuff? Don't hesitate to PM your questions to the AniWaya account, and we'll reply as soon as possible. If you need posting tables, avatars or sigs, you can request code and graphics in the talents subforum. If you're feeling lost or confused about the game, don't hesitate to post a question in Roleplay Aides, or to seek out a Mentor!

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