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Chapter 15 – The Stranger; Planning Begins | July 14th, 2019

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    @Ayaka @Kajika @Shukie @skydancer
    %Fianna %Kwa`ani
    Kilmaten Nova Shakira Phoenix


    [09:13] * skydancer shifts her frame slightly which causes her to wake up as the movement causes her muscles to complain. holding breath for a moment she waits for ache to subside a little then lifts her head and checks her surroundings her gaze once falling on what is left of the mykeer

    [09:31] <Faolan>  A lil’ flicker a somethin’ on the yonder was all dey got before and wha’ he get for all da trouble of the tellin? Nothin’; a nod and den a ‘go back’ and have another look-see. Dis-moi pas, he be wantin’ the whole story… Alright den, you got yo’ reasons. I gettin’ the company a some a da others?  oh, cher, that silent piercing stare was all the answer he be gettin’.  Allons… he’d told his paws  We be findin’ da worth in this here story den.  For now; for now…well he was just sittin’ back on his haunches watching from the copse of stone and tree that he had found before. He’d be a lil’ flicker a somethin’ on the yonder for now but to please the old grump he’d have to have another tale to tell.

    [09:45] * skydancer turning her attention away from the, thing she twitches her nose and swivels her ears alertly as she checks for sighns of potential trouble even as she pushes her front paws against the ground her right one especialy achy.

    [10:00] <Faolan>  Was this the only one up and around? Mama didn’t raise no fool. The distance was enough to see the broadest of details, but to get the story the grump wanted he’d have to find a smaller brush. Dat meant he’d have to go on and introduce himself nice like.  Rahdoht…stone be savin’ me from a windy day.  Whether he was upwind or down made little difference to him. He had reassurances that, for the most part, ya play nice and nice plays back. On down from the gnoll he came taking a little jaunt right out there in the open.  Le vieux temps..cher, this is how it always go.  If’n this was a sharp wolf, then she’d catch him fast enough…maybe fast enough?  He’d be a dirty whitish fleck of snow just a rollin’ on down towards the vestige of the fray ( )

    [10:06] * skydancer pushing her fronts against the ground she sits up winching a little in response to the aches though atleast no one is around to spot it. correction, no one close enough she realizes something approaches and not enough of a scent to identify it as more then ‘wolf’ though others movements tell her much the same. so despite her aches she forces herself to get up and wander over making sure she places herself between the strange and the wounded atraya before continuing to intercept” Who goes there?” she calls as the scent isn’t familiar at all.

    [10:18] <Faolan> Da scent, da face, da whole shabang spoke a stranger. He’d come within a good couple dozen paces and there stay upon his paws. He was built to travel. The stocky, short-legged things of lore had all died out and the ol’ grump likened it to an unfair trade of wits for brawn. Nah, he wasn’t small but he wasn’t no kin of the dull-wits.  Bonjour, mon petit.  The initial greeting came as smoothly off the tongue like a breath of air, but what followed had obviously been told to him…rehearsed.  Hail and farewell. May all four quarters depart or stay if they will.  He’d be curt-like and give a strategic bow of sorts. Mama ain’t raise no fool, he kept his eyes on her small or not.  Who goes anywhere, cher? Who goes in a place like this, all run down like? For my part, I am Phoenix; and you?

    [10:38] * skydancer stops her frame slightly sideways presenting her uninjured side so as to appears as large as possible. tilting her head slightly puzzled by his words though it might a greeting of sorts. with the rest of his behaviour respectful enough as if she and the pack are on home ground she is willing to take the words as such. “thank you and I’ll pass the message on to the others.” she replies maybe someone else might be able to figure out the exact meaning of the message. “greetings Phoenix.” she replies. “my name is skydancer, member of wolfspirits” she introduces herself. “what has brought you this way?” shae asks taking care to speak a bit slower as the others choice of words I indicate he might have trouble understanding her otherwise.

    [11:14] * Faolan watched the fae as one writing a script. Her behavior was one he expected. He was a stranger among stranger events, and to allay her worries he’d do nothing to offer up ill intent. That said, he remained quartered up to not present any open area on his flank. Her slower speech was an insult he suffered in stride.  Skydancer a the Wolfspirits, pardon the tone but I ain’t here to giva a message. Da scent a trouble be a promise on da wind, ya reckon? Trouble brews and a story is written, c’est tout. Ain’t no other reason for a wolf’s comin’ and goin’. He gauged her response and posture before venturing a longer glance beyond her to another wounded fae. He was keen not to press more than 3 seconds worth a glance…3 seconds an eternity it was; an eternity he wanted the fae before him to notice.

    [11:18] * Fianna un curled from the mossy stretch of tree limb she’d found, the branch stretching out from the large tree in the center of the cavern, it’s heavy limb stretch out far and low nearly to the ground. Moss cushioned it, and had presented a nice bed for the past evening. The cavern was wide and calm, soothing after the tension with Kwa`ani the previous day. Still, her emotions roiled and rocked like a turbulent sea and she growled low to herself as she thought of Kwaani’s dismissive icy words to her the previous day. Words that were perhaps true, and hurt all the worse the because of it. How could she come to terms with being the reason her mother was blind? Her sister blamed her, certainly. Rising she shook her pelt, and her head, and glanced around the odd cavern filled with a living tree, grasses, moss, and a stream. Hopping off the limb she stretched, resting her achy side. It felt most like a bruise now, the wound scabbing nicely as it healed.

    [11:27] * Ayaka had gone south from the ruins, scoping the land for any sign of either the blacktail herd from before, or the Caribou herds that had been abesent from their own territories for some time. She’d gone over a small rise and around the hill as it sloped upward, hoping to get up higher for a better vintage point. This high, it wasn’t likely herds would be hanging out, more likely they would find a valley somewhere the were now flourishing in the spring and summer heat.

    [11:30] * skydancer_ ears swivel everso slightly  as she listens to his response “you’re here because of what happen? she ventures uncertainly. “why would such a thing be of interest to one such as yourself?” she asks unwilling to reveal the seriousness of the situation. when his gaze shifts toward the wounded alphess she steps aside blocking his line of sight to the fae.

    [11:39] * Fianna felt her stomach had been over a day since she’d last eaten, and yet she was reluctant to return to the bear carcass, for that meant return to where Kwaani’s dagger eyes would find her. Still, she would not forsake her pack, no matter how little her sister wanted her presence, unless the pack no longer wanted her either. Guilt would be slow to relinquish it’s claws within her for she’d found no reason to her burden. Crouching to lap at the stream within the cavern, she rose at last to turn and make her way back toward the bone cave, walking evenly, unhurried.

    [11:45] * Shukie had stirred earlier, the contraption now at the base of the tower where she and Kajika had settled the night prior. Fianna would likely find their scent fresh within the caves along with furrows in the earth where stone was not for the item they drug. She would gaze to Kajika, “G’morning, Kajika. Are we ready?” She looked for signs of Kilmaten as the two prepared.

    [11:46] <Faolan> No other gesture was given than to turn his eyes back to Skydancer. He’d hit a nerve on that one. Her responses did elicit less of a guarded return, however.  “One such as yourself?”  he said, managing a near perfect recitation of Skydancer’s tone.  De’pouille to you huh? A crow ain’t a need a knowin’ da name of a carcass or of its auntie’s kin, cher. I ain’t a crow and you ain’t a carcass do(though), but dat one der ain’t lookin’ set for a place like dis.  Though he wanted to look at Atraya once again, he had taken what notes he could. Rather, he kept on task…dis a nut a hard a crackin’.  Dat’s my angle, cher. Ain’t here to be a player in yo story. I here to write it and be on my merry way.

    [11:47] * Kajika would be waiting by the strange device that Shukie and him brought up from the caves earlier just outside of the ruins. Now completely dry, it reflected a lot of the light and it was starting to warm up in the clouded early afternoon sun. It was a strange object that he was really curious about, but even after helping to carry it here, he still only felt comfortable with just a few light prods and cautious sniffs on his own. Shukie now waking up would half turn his attention away from it and he would nod in acknowledgement. “Yup! I’m ready to give this thing a try!”

    11:50] * Kilmaten is still nappin at the top of the tower, waiting for Shukie or Kajika to wake him up by making noise or somethin. A growing pup needs his beauty sleep!

    [11:52] * Nightshade woke up from her slumber, she had an rough night. Her dreams keep visualizing every happening again and again. Her frame twitched and squirmed. She opened her eyes when the nightmare ended and whined.

    [11:53] * Kwa`ani had far too much time to mull over the exchange with her sister the day prior. Feeling eyes upon her location she remained unmoving only slightly opening her eyes to meer slits to seek the source unable to stop the bristling of her fur the only sign she was aware.

    11:57] * Fianna would cross into the cavern where Atraya had been held captive, the chain now empty and laying among the bones. As she passed through, one paw struck a bone, sending it scittering across the floor with a loud clatter. She winced and shook her head, picking her way more carefully. She didn’t need any more reminders of the Mykeer, nor of their mother’s misfortune. As she passed through she slowed to a stop near the exit, lifting her muzzle to scent the air. Shukie and Kajikas scent seemed to be fairly recent, and.. What were those odd markings in the ground? She studied them for a bit, then continued out toward the bridge that would lead her out of the caves, and on up towards the ruins.

    [12:00] * Shukie would nod to Kajika, not finding a fresh scent at the base of the pup thus assuming he slept on at the top. Let’s get Nova up there and then we can cover him in stone. Setting the one side down she began to gently move Nova onto it as best she could, hoping it’d hold together until they reached the top.

    [12:01] * Kova the days events would unfold and much, it would seem, after she had taken a long needed rest. Her side would burn with pain but her shoulder more so but at least the wounds she received from the bears figure would have finally closed. She would flick her eyes open and closed slowly before finally hearing the murmured sounds of echoed voices across the ruins. She had found herself a nice little knook to sleep beside. Two large rocks that where fallen across one another made a nice little overhang. “Herm.phhhhf…” she grumbled doing her best to move her now stiff body.

    12:05] * Ayaka rose after a time of observation and moved down off the hillside. She wondered if Atraya had awoken yet, wanting to discuss their options. Every so often she would come across what looked to be old deer tracks, no doubt from when the blacktail had run after their last hunt. It was possible they could be tracked if needed. For now, however, she moved back toward the ruins, coming from.the south.

    [12:05] * Nightshade looked around to see if everyone still were around. “Hello?” Stretching her frame and shooked her pelt she asked ” on my way back to you guys, I figured out a newly scent… who’s that?”

    12:08] * skydancer_ feels a little of her tension drain as the stranger stops looking toward the severely injured fea. “you are a stranger to our likely a loner, yes?” she replies by way explanation. “she is plenty strong enough.” she counters sharply. even if in her heart she is worried for atraya “de what?”‘she asks puzzled by the expression.”and why would I even think about sharing our ‘story’ with you she asks warily.

    12:08] * Fianna continued moving slowly, across the bridge now and on the opposite platform that then the pathway rose from, eventually reaching the top and the ruins stretched out before her. Once her paws rested upon level ground again she paused, tail hanging low between her legs and her honey golden hues scanning the area before her to see who was moving about. As she did so she pressed on toward the ruins, planning on passing them by and heading toward the Mykeer’s carcass. Fianna glanced aside to the ruins as she skirted them, perhaps taking note of Shukie and Kajika as she did so? If she could see the odd contraption they had with them she would pause and stare for a moment, wondering at their purpose, but not announcing her presence with any particular noise.

    12:15] * Ayaka would first see the carcass come into view from a distance as she rounded the last hill, and nearby, a bkt further off, several forms were gathered near Atraya’s frame. She narrowed her eyes, picking up her pace a bit as she tried to make out who it was, at first not realizing one was a stranger.

    [12:15] * Nightshade stood up and saw that only skydancer_ was nearby.  Confused she asked her ” where’s everyone else? Sky?” And watched around and sniffed on the ground for tracks.

    [12:23] <Faolan>  You see. That there’d be a problem for one needin’ to high-tail it outta here, folks comin’ up from the south like. ’twas his route and his route would smell something fierce like him. He’d announced himself well enought to those that came after him, around him, beside him…nae on top. Da crows ain’t in need a no scent markings, but he’d seen many a wolf the day before; knew the drill. He regarded her answer about the other’s strength and answered her questions in some semblence of his choosing.  De’pouille, mon petit; bare…a fool a sorts. A wolf ain’t ever alone, cher. The stone beneath be a fine companion if not for the tellin’ of a tale or two along the way. A story, a memory, a tall tale…ca quelque chose.  He paused a moment to catch his bearings while keeping a steady look see on Skydancer  You tell a tale already. Ain’t nothin for it, but I took it since I gave you one at the start. A name a story and you told it well enough.  That did little to tell of his intent on going or staying.

    [12:23] * Nightshade mentioned that she spoke to nothing than herself and find out that everyone moved, she groomed her pelt and thought about what to do.

    [12:23] * Shukie was also pondering the best way to maneouver the staircase when Kajika spoke, “Perhaps one at the top pulling and lifting when needed and the other pushing from the bottom and keeping from sliding back down?” There was no easy way to accomplish the task. This may not even work ..was a thought that crossed her mind but didn’t vocalize.

    [12:25] * Atraya the night was long and full of terrors, or so, in her own mind. She lay just south from the carcass of the Myrkeer. Whatever the pack did with it afterwards would be as it would. The familiar twang of pain and fatigue would have drawn her out of the deep slumber she had found herself within and the subtle movements of her frame would indicate she was starting to arise from that very darkness. She was unware of what transpired the previous days at all. The bickering. The tension. The guilt. Her charcoal nose waivered left and right as she slowly began to take in the scents therein.

    [12:29] * Kwa`ani would feel her mother stir or was she just being hopeful. Carefully she lifted her head from her mother’s shoulder, the weight of her head only enough to touch the fur. “Mother?” she whispered as her eyes darted to skydancer_ and the stranger and back to her mother, back n forth. The relief of her mother awakening was evident in her long sigh that escaped her maw.

    [12:29] * Fianna would step a bit closer toward Shukie and Kajika so she had a better view of the goings on, that meant moving into the ruins a bit more and she did so, until she was a few yards away before slowing again. The brute who’d fought the Mykeer with them… She struggled to remember his name.. Nova. She could see him there, lifeless. Swallowing hard she shivered, for she had not seen one of her pack killed before. Even she had not known or even remembered him well, she knew he had been pack. Hadnt he had a pup? She looked around for the young one but didn’t see him. Finally she moved up to Kajika and Shukie with a soft chuff, figuring to help if she could. It was the least she could do..

    [12:30] * Ayaka would become well aware of the stranger’s scent as she approached, for along her path it seemed he too had approached. She stiffened some, especially as she drew nearer to the group beside Atraya, seeing skydancer seemingly confront him. With a chuff to alert them all of her approach, she spared a glance at Atraya and Kwaani. Where had Fianna run off to? Then she moved toward skydancer and the… Other one, walking carefully toward them

    [12:34] * Atraya the murmuring sounds of conversation would all but tickle her mind. She caught nothing of the context or words and simply stirred. She was unaware of the past few days events and would only know of them by being informed. She heard a familiar voice as the smell of her daughters and pack where well upon the wind. They where still there. “Kwa?” she offered in hushed tones.

    [12:35] <Atraya> As Ayaka would scout out the territory she would no doubt pick up traces of animals. More then the pack’s previous territory would have held.

    [12:38] * Nightshade made her way to the place of crime, slowly she left her place where she last   night was with shukie. As she looked close when she headed that way, she could see maybe some frames in the distance, with who are they talking?

    [12:43] * Shukie paused at Fianna’s approach and subsequent offer of help, help she would not turn down for it would make things all the easier. She’d seen the sister’s quarrel the day before but did not inquire of what it was about. It was for them to work out between themselves. “Yes, Fianna, you’re help is greatly appreciated.” Glancing to Kajika then back agian, “We were just figuring out the best way to move Nova to the top using this board thing we found in the caves.” She knew the fae had been injured but she seemed ok. “You’re injuries?”

    [12:43] * skydancer_ looks puzzled as tries to understand the response. “what do you mean? is something coming this way we need to be aware of?” she asks easing her right front then placing firmly back down. “who route?  who is this he?” her demeanor between curiousity and worry for those injured. “is there others coming up from the south?” suddenly wonder if the depoulthing was an insult of somesort to her or something else.”no we have our packs to stand by us.” she agrees with that easily enough. with her frame getting tired from the standing she steps forward with her hind paws making it look like she is just choosing to relax a bit more. “You gave us a story?” she asks sounding suspicious shifting her haunches a bit but unwilling get up dueto the aches. becoming aware of ayaka approaching she feels relief at the reinforcement.

    [12:44] * Kajika nodded as he followed what she was saying. Not that it really mattered but he decided to give the contraption a test pull. “Do you want to pull or push then? I don’t have a preference myself.” He looked back up at the tower and standing underneath it now made it seem higher than previous trips up and down its steps. He remembered it being clear of unnecessary obstacles but there were some areas that might have eroded stones or entire blocks missing on the sides or floor that he thought nothing of until now. He heard the sound of Fianna’s chuff and turned around to return a friendly greeting to her, his tail wagging at the sight of the white fae. He found himself nodding as he took a step back so that she was free to inspect it herself if she wished

    [12:48] * Nightshade neared the entrance now and chuffed towards who were there “hello?” She asked in the he hope that she greeted the right wolves.

    [12:49] * Kwa`ani licked at her mother’s ear that was nearest her. “There is a stranger nearby talking with skydancer_. I can’t determine what they are saying but he did keep looking your way several times.” Trying to give her mum as much info as possible knowing she could not see.” It was then she would rise up intending to stand in front of Atraya as a means of further protecting her.

    [12:59] * Nightshade entered the area where she saw that skydancer was talking with a stranger.

    [12:59] * Shukie nodded to Fianna and Kajika. “I think with one pulling and lifting the top the two others can push and keep stable.” When Fianna offered to pull Shukie moved down beside Kajika positioning herself beside him. “For Nova” and she began to push from the bottom once Fianna was in place. “Slow and steady”

    [13:02] <Faolan>  Rahdoht indeed…Yet, there was some hope in getting free of it via the entrance of a few other wolves. He would be curt of course and give a brief relay of a look to Ayaka. The wolf had followed after his trail and did not seem surprised. Well, dat’s good den. Sharp dese ones…sharp enough. I dun said I ain’t here to deliver any messages.  He said, turning his attention back to Skydancer. He’d note her shift, yet would stay on his own paws.  I just said a name is a story itself; might not know the whole shebang, but I know enough to start the tale from here. Garde ça, I be tellin’ you my little secret and I charge a story for a story. You fixin’ to get busy tendin’ the others I see, so I’ll give you lagniappe; a little extra if you will. There aint no more trouble than what you stirred, comprenez vous?
    [13:04] * Faolan didn’t wait for a response before he pressed his luck  Seein’ as it is the neighborly thing to do. Why not introduce me to a few of the others dat can fend for themselves? Wouldn’t wanna work up the injured on my account.

    [13:02] * Nightshade as she entered she walks softly and spectate it from a distance, if others would look to the opening, they would see Nightshade there. Not sure if it safe, she will await directions.  “Hello Atraya” she saw that the bear has hit her bad and flattened her ears. ” so sorry for everything ”

    [13:03] * Fianna moved to the front of the board and nodded, pausing to answer Shukie’s previous question. “I am sore but this shouldn’t make my injury worse. It had been a bruising cut along her side, but she thought she could manage, it was only achy now. leaning down to grasp the contraption as tightly within her jaws as she could, eying Nova as she did so, she then braced herself and began pulling, going slowly so she could find to leverage herself up and back.

    [13:07] * Atraya an ear turned towards Kwa`ani as she would wiggle her nose trying to taste the air before her. Herm. Could she determine who this new creature was? “Describe it. What is it?” she couldn’t determine what kind of creature it was based on smell alone.

    [13:08] * Kova having the stamina of a huntress before hand she would have risen to all fours and shook her pelt quickly. She huffed at the stiffness but movement no doubt would be the remedy for that. She would be resting in the ruins and by now started off towards where the bear had been felled the night prior. She would be well aware of anyone who was near or around her and tried to gauge the best she who exactly was near her.

    [13:09] * Ayaka had come to a stop beside skydancer. Though she wanted to speak to Atraya, and saw her moving some now, she figured addressing a stranger was more important for the time being. As she heard him speak she tilted her head, an ear flicking at his strange accent. His words sounded foreign to her but every so often she picked out one or two she could understand. When he mentioned introductions she stepped forward a paw length and narrowed her eyes at him for a moment. Then, deciding on a neutral approach, due to them not being within their own territory, she dipped her head and spoke. “I can introduce myself, if you like stranger. I am Ayaka, of wolfspirits. No doubt you can ascertain much of the story that happened here, for it is written in blood for all to see.” She paused and glanced at skydancer, wondering what had passed before she arrived, what was the stranger’s purpose here she wondered as she eyed him, taking in his appearance and the way he held himself.

    [13:09] * Kajika waited until she listed her injuries before he would answer her question and committed it to memory. “We want to take him up there so that this can be used to commemorate his life and how selfless he gave it for the Pack. The view from the top is also going to be a great one to overlook in whatever comes after this life of ours.” He got in place to get ready to push and ensure that Nova shift or fall off. “And if we do decide to stay here and Kilmaten stays with us, then he can take short journeys to visit if he ever felt the desire to do so.”

    [13:13] * skydancer ears perk slightly at the explenation. ‘so your just going to make things?” she asks tilting her head everso slightly as long as it would make the pack appear stronger to those it was told to that ould only be good thing. like a bluff they woudn’t have to do anything for and maybe keep a few more trouble makers away. as ayaka closes the distance she gives a litle wave with her banner and almos flinches due to the ache that action awakens. “neighbourly?” you mean you live near here?” she is suddeny suspious again would his territory have overlapped with mykeers, what if anything had he to do with that creepy bear. rising back onto her weary paws she watches him with some of that suspicion showing.

    [13:19] * Nightshade would now join the conversation and listened closely while she carefully stepped next to Ayaka. She will circle in a safe distance, so the stranger wouldn’t attack her.  Since she got traumatized by the event, she doesn’t trust anyone anymore, especially strangers.  So could just ask… but just listening would be safe.

    [13:19] * Shukie , Kajika and Fianna would make quick work of the stairway, the noise of their assent would likely rouse Kilmaten if he wasn’t already awake. “A few more steps to go” She offered as encouragement. They would not be aware of the situation unfolding.

    [13:27] * Atraya would listen intently to Kwa`ani’s words and what she had to offer in the way of description of the new wolf. Hummmmmed. She licked her lips slowly and found the only taste present was blood. The pain pushed aside she would dip her head slowly. The cold compresses placed upon her frame however have helped immensely. “What does he look like… describe him?”

    [13:30] <Faolan>  And like that, another fae entered into the conversation. He was curt here as well and even dipped a little (eyes always up) to Ayaka and Nightshade  Bonjour, Ayaka a tha Wolfspirits. Hail and farewell. May the four quarters depart or stay if they will.  He regained his strategic posture; never lax but never threatening.  So that a story ain’t repeated beyond its worth, cher; I am Phoenix, a collector a tale so to speak. Not of the tall kind, mind you. Truth is what some call it, do(though) dey don’t know a lick of it sometime.  From his vantage and in between the shift of the postures he could catch sight of other wolves coming to or around Atraya. A glance wasn’t needed when he could just look at the three in front of him.  A name a good story but it ain’t the full of it. I reckon trust loosens the tongue, but I ain’t after an advantage. Scent a blood comes before the cull and I ain’t no reaper. I saw you lot fight well and would only like to know why such a fricassee happened.

    [13:36] <Faolan>  For the lay of the land, so to speak… He looked much like any other wolf in the sense of his build. The color of his coat betrayed a somewhat foreign aspect of “these parts” but were not spectacularly out of sorts. He was white and ashen gray primarily. ’twas what it was. Take it or leave it.

    [13:35] * Kilmaten was indeed still sleeping, not dreaming, though. Through his sleep he heard the noise his fathers ascent, and quickly jumped awake, rising to all fours and did some little doggo stretches. They seem pretty close! He ran over to the pathway leading back down and looked for the convoy.

    [13:37] * Ayaka would spare only a glance for Nightshade as the fae came to stand nearby, keeping the bulk of her attention on… Phoenix? She found the stranger intriguing in his speech, puzzling as well. After the recent events, trust was not easily given, especially now that the Alphess’s sight had been taken. Precausions must be had. Yet.. He seemed for the time being to mean no harm. She would dip her own head to him.

    [13:38] * Kova having moved away from the ruins themselves she would take note of a fairly sized gathering. She would see her sister Ayaka among a group near skydancer and Nightshade. Wait.. who was that? She felt her fur prickle in light of all that happened and slowly started to approach the gathering. She had a skeptical and confused look on her face but considering the others didn’t seem to give off a vibe of entire mis-trust, she too wouldn’t. She paused just short as not to crowd and seemigly caught a snippet of this wolf’s request.

    [13:39] * Kwa`ani didn’t have much to go on but that was more than here mother had. “He shows no threat in his posture yet I get the impression he could strike at a moments notice. I don’t know where he came from.” She tilted her head slightly to see what she could. “Sky, Ayaka and now Nightshade are there. Nothing from this distance stands out about him.” Sighing inwardly at not being able to provide solid commentary of the brute. When he shifted his posture it was then she picked up on his coloring, “He is of normal build, perhaps a white mixed with light gray? The color as ashe or stone.” After a pause she would add that Kova now was heading the way of the group.

    [13:40] * Kajika huffed once they got Nova to the top of the tower. This was only half of what they had wanted to do but the rocks could be moved at another time and maybe it wouldn’t take three of them like it had taken to move Nova up here. He looked out for any possible areas where he might find a good supply of loose stones that could be moved up here and also found himself pausing to look at the view that would be visible to anyone else who came up here. His ears spun around at the sound of scuffling paw steps which seemed to echo around these ruins. Was it Kilmaten? It had to be but he didn’t see the young wolf just yet. He stretched and shook himself off before he would start to take Nova off of the board to take it back down to be used again. He was gentle in pulling and lightly him off of it until he was clear to move the object freely. «end

    [13:40] * Ayaka “Well met, then, Phoenix. Our fight..” She glanced at skydancer then, pausing a moment. The fae was right to be cautious but what was in the past… Was past. Could it harm them still? Perhaps. “The cause of blood upon the ground, would go back before our time. It isn’t a tale for us to tell, for we were only pawns within it. The makers of the story.. Some lie dead now, but others perhaps will explain more in the coming times.”

    [13:43] * Atraya gave a nod of her head to Kwa`ani “Will you please ask that one of those near him who have gathered his scent bring it back to me when they are done conversing.” she herself didn’t go for she desired not to give away the current weakened state she was in. Or make herself vunerable. She was well protected within the troves of her pack and trusted that.

    [13:43] * skydancer ears witch slightly as what she’d taken as a message seems to be somesort of greeting instead, intristing.. watching ayaka for a her reaction becomes aware of nightshade presence and the wiff of another, kova? good the more the saers thing’ll be for everyone.”I doubt you can stop that from happening. these kind of things often get bigger in the telling.” she replies then thinks on his request. “ayaka is rights.

    [13:43] * skydancer it’s not our tale to tell. we probably don’t know everything ourselves.” she adds not willing tose got the hghlights of the events which might or might not be the entire truth.

    [13:45] * Nightshade nodded in agreement with the words of ayaka ” What did you brought here? Or better said.. what brought you by us?” Looked puzzled at the stranger, perhaps she did missed the introduction, but at the other side…she actually doesn’t care. With a stare she kept her attention at what he had to tell. “I don’t trust him…” she whispered.

    [13:54] * Kova flicked an ear to the passing of conversation and more so the topic. How interesting. Who was this wolf and why did he want to know the context of their story? Perhaps he was one to gather lore and story. She personally found that to be intriguing enough to offer in kind. “A lore keeper are you? One who keeps and records stories?”she didn’t mean to be rude or interject but she was curious. Also she didn’t want to pile on the potential questions from all the others who where around. Surely this wolf would find that a new face was something to behold.

    [13:57] <Faolan>  Ya got a wisdom and a bete you ain’t give yourselves credit for. Mais jamais d’la vie… His tones were flat and not the kind that one would expect delivering needless flattery…or flattery in any sense. No, he ain’t one for offhanded insults. He just be one for stating things as dey were.  Ah, cher…you be of the right mind  he said to Nightshade as her question was subsequently answered  A story brought me here and a story; whether you be the writers or the actors is of no mind to me.  His gaze turned to what he could see of the fight, making sure that his eyes did not linger upon the fae that had caused Skydancer to react as she did.  A collector a sorts. I’d have a story for a story (akin to him askin a name for the information divulged) Here his tones were of one that was too busy havin’ a lookieloo than to properly adress yet another pot stirrer, but he was curt. The ol’ grump had made him such. Soon his hues came back to Kova and he would again dip  Hail and farewell. The circle now is open, yet unbroken still.

    [13:57] * Shukie caught her breath as Kajika took the tool down she would catch sight of the goings on down below, spotting the stranger her fur bristled. “Something’s afoot below” she stated calmly despite not being so. With the pack mostly around the wolf knew they could be down there in short order should it be needed. “Kilmaten, If you would like time alone with your father let us know. We will start to gather the stones. First tho, She moved to the edge closed to the wolves below letting her silhouette be seen.

    [14:03] * Kova she would only stirr the pot unless it was needed and it seemed she was sprinkled into the mix. She seated herself next to Ayaka and Nightshade before she dipped her head “Salutations and well met.” she gave a mutual greeting and took his words now to try and decipher just what the end part met. Huh. “Circle?” there was a rightful confusion in her tone as she questioned. “I am Kova, Member of WolfSpirits and previous Huntress. If it is stories you seek, then pray tell to whom you deliver these stories to? Or is it for your own refelection and collection?”

    [14:03] * Nightshade ” interesting.. a Collector of stores, who are the ones you share them with? I always love lores… but in what kind of cost? What will happen if we share ours? What will we achieve with it?” She asked him.

    [14:10] * Kilmaten watched as his father was placed down on the top of the ruins. He saw that there was a third wolf but it quickly went away, so he just shrugged it off. “Umm… Yeah maybe a couple of minutes..” He said softly as he then turned his attention to his fathers body, and slowly walked to him. He rested himself on the side of his father, butting his head down near his.

    [14:11] * skydancer flicks an ear dismissvely. “perhaps.” though it seems the pack has done something right in this brutes eyes though she coudn’t care less about that then about the pack surviving, mostly. “a story brought you? what kind of stoy? someone send you she asks curiously and worried for other know of presence here that can spell trouble in the near future. “story for a story? ” while to her this might be very intristing she is also very aware the risk and the questions the other two ask are her mind as well who will hear them ad abou as important when will asking just such a question reveal too much.. no more then what he can already see she’ ll await his answer before deciding to ask or not as the case may be.

    [14:15] * Kajika would grant Kilmaten his wishes to be alone with his father and took hold of the pulling end of the object and got it to the stairs. He decided to let the sled-like object go down first and slowed down his descent by leaning back. It made it a little hard to see the next step, but most of them were a uniform distance apart so once he got the gist of where one would be, it took less time dangling his paw above the surface of it.

    [14:19] <Faolan>  A round about shape a sorts. Keep up nah,  he said as he drew what could pass a circle in snow-melt mud beside him. He wasn’t sure what the question meant. The ol’ grump was the one who told him of the shape in the first place. Maybe not everyone know of it?  Fascinatin’ a former huntress. Is that akin to retired from the activity or one who is adverse to doin’ such now? Mais, j’peux pas croire…you take down a bear, ‘n a sizeable one at that, no trouble at all, cher. I digress.  Too many faces to pass his gaze along and fact find at the same time, but he did what he could without being rude. Next his eyes fell to Nightshade  A story for a story. If’n you want a story from me, I ask you pay the equivalent price. The jucier the story, the more savory the price. His gaze ran counter to skydancer’s question, to which he answered  A story for a story. Want to know the details of my path, then I’d like to know more of yours.

    14:30] * Kova a story he wanted was it? Very well. She liked this wolf’s tone and seeing the others didn’t find anything unusully off from him just yet she would settle herself down and lower to the surface of the snows. It crunched beneath her weight a little more heavier now – indiciating the snow was perhaps starting to melt. “Things change in a pack and though I don’t hold the rank, I still uphold the duties of such. However that may be another story for another time. If it’s a story of interest you’d like to hear then….. A story for a story. Very well.” she looked between the others and then back to the wolf. “Imagine a world where there existed two plains of life. One for the living and one for the astral spirits beyond our sight. Those who where deemed worthy where given a mark. A mark to see the darkness as well the light. Darkness resided within creatures all across the landscape…. and those with the mark could see that darkness. It was not one to be trifled with. It was one to vanquish. The wolves who carried such a mark did such a thing. A huntress. Alphas. Deltas. Scouts and guardians a like. They all banded together for a common purpose until there was no need for such a gift. A gift not even deserving to have.” she would pause for a breif moment allowing her words to be offered as they would.

    [14:33] * Kwa`ani hesitated then at her mother’s request she moved forward towards the group intent upon obtaining his scent for her mother. First tho, she whispered quietly to Atraya, “I shall see it done and be back shortly. The brute still lingers yet there is no show of defensiveness from those present.” With she would move off towards the group. Once near to avoid startling she chuffed greetings of her own. She didn’t inquire the male’s name or anything not wishing to have things duplicated. She would close the distance and slowly walk around them all, circling the male far closer than her pack mates she would inadverantly stumble falling against him briefly which would obtain his scent in the process. Outwardly she would look the clumbsy fae. Upon her paws again she would move to stand Kova, remaining quiet. If Kova were to scold her or simply send her back to their alpha’s side she would go without question, mission hopefully accomplished unless the male moved out of her pretend fall before she could obtain his scent.

    [14:33] * Nightshade looked at Kova and whispered ” Are you sure about that? ” she said when kova told a story, wondering what the prices would be.

    [14:34] * Atraya would give a quiet nod of her head to her daughter. “Thank you” she would call out to her as she would approach the gathered of now one more. She would wait eagerly to find out who it was.

    [14:37] * skydancer looks thoughtfull. “I don’t think you meant it litteral before.” she comment shifting her attention toward kova looking houghtfull maybe it had refered to the pack in someway. “I wouldn’t say undeserving but we simply had no need for such a thing. nothing ever showed up.” she coments with a flick of an ear. spotting kwa’ani approaching she dips her muzzle at the chuff though when the fea ‘stumbles’ against the stranger she looks toward the fea slightly puzzled the youngster isn’t usualy so clumsy. either way she tries to interspce herself in between the stranger and the young wolf despite her own injuries incase phoenix retaliates by instinct if nothing else.

    [14:47] <Faolan>  He would be listening to Kova’s story when Kwa`ani made her way towards him. Oh, he was not one for autohits of any kind, no sir. A lookieseehere was fine, but his scent…nah Whoa der, cher. Fais pas Ça,  he exclaimed as he sidestepped this overgrown newborn on adult legs.  No, no nah…A story for a story and my scent be a fine price; a price you ain’t paid. Nah, I be thinkin’ that price paid by this one here,  he said as he gestured toward Kova. He could say a thing or two towards the story itself and to skydancer’s clarifications but he was a coy one, wasn’t he? Sure was, mon cher…sure was.  Now you asked for a story about one who’d like to be hearin’ my tales. That sounds a right price to pay for your story, a fine one it was. Mais, I collect what I hear and see for the true collector.

    [14:50] * Kova would look to Kwa`ani as she approached and when she tried to reach for his scent he recoiled. She would tilt her head to the actions and wondered quietly in her mind just who this wolf was but when he spoke again and it seemed her tale had been received she would offer in kind. “Whom is the true collector? Do they have a name? Are they wolf kind?” now she would question those things from now on. Especially with the Myrkeer.

    [14:55] * Atraya remained where she was, listening intently to the wind and what it had to tell. For now it would be her only comfort. Her only breathe of reminder there was much more outside the darkness she could currently see. Her face was still far to swollen and red with blood to even recognize the extent of the damage. She flicked an ear back and then forward again, listening all the same.

    [14:59] * Shukie waited for a sign from the pup when he had finished his time with his father. So hard a beginning he had. It was the way of life she knew, but that made it no easier. With the stranger below she was not in a hurry to rush the lad in his farethewells as it would keep him safer here where only the stairway led to him. Every fiber dictated that she go to the alpha and those there. After many long moments she went to the pup intending to take her leave to investigate herself then stopped herself. She had a prime vantage point atop the battlements. If there was one, were there more? slowly she would gaze in all directions while the light was still good.

    [15:02] * skydancer at the brutes reaction she realizes that that was indeed what kwa’ani was trying and it isn’t a bad idea.”maybe you can try to recall a story in exchange kwa’ani” she suggest then leans in closer. “becarefull you pick though.” she suggests in a wistper then steps back and returns her attention to what is transpiring between kova and phoenix as her curiousity is pique even if also tempered with cautiont.

    [15:12] * Kwa`ani simply nodded to the stranger, not yet knowing his name unless one of the group were to speak it. The male had spent much time in one place ad when he departed eventually, his scent would remain anyways. “Well met.” with a dip of her head she backed up then moved back to her mother’s side. THe little bits she had heard and with Kova’s questions and skydancer’s suggestion of giving a story for a story, or in this case his scent. At least she had some info for Atraya when she would eventually return to her side.

    [15:15] <Atraya> “And?” she offered now turning an ear towards Kwa`ani. She had smelt her arrival before she reached her and perked her ears forward curiously.

    [15:15] * Faolan didn’t seem to pay the transgression of sorts any mind. It was curt in some places to exchange scent…a form of mutual trust. His was not and had not been this way for quite some time.  I suppose he does but a name for a name was not the price put to it when we met and I have yet to sufficiently find a story that rivaled it. Tough nut, that one. He a wolf like any a you and I, but den -not a wolf- in a sense dat I know not. Tough to say in words.  From the sense of it, the story had been matched in price. Maybe there was a little extra, maybe not but he stood one a silent as ever.

    [15:17] * Kova a long breath was made as she would scent the air before the wolf. Trying to pick his scent as well but gave a curious tilt of her head. She drew her eyes to skydancer before looking back to this wolf. “Perhaps if this wolf, or not wolf, desires to hear a story worthy of a name…. perhaps he or she will fancy a trek here to hear one? I know our family is lathered with stories worth a name.”

    [15:22] * Kilmaten had sat there nuzzled up for quite a moment now. He mainly sat there thinking about all the good times and their journey they had together as his mood dropped. Kilmaten hopes he gets to see him again one day, his dad promiced they would, that he would see everyone again. That wouldnt be for a long time. Tears swelled up in his eyes as he spent the rest of his time there wishing he would just get up and be okay, but obviously that wouldnt happen. He started to lift himself as he heard Shukie come back up to him, seemingly gazing around at the sight he enjoyed the day before, and looked abouts himself after he gave his dad a lick on his muzzle.

    [15:28] * skydancer slowly sit’s down once more her frame relaxing slightly at the tension on what can easily be bruises under all her fur lessened even so she can’t lie down as she refere to without revealing the claw marks on the flank she keeps turned away from the stranger hoping that the scent of blood in the air is still strong enough to hide the scent on her own frame. “mhm” she agrees. “no lack of stories here. I’ve see much snce arriving though I’ve heard a few stories that are rivals for what happened a few day’s ago. might one of those be usefull?” she asks then get a sly look. “maybe a small side story or two. ”

    [15:33] * Shukie heard the pups sounds dropping back from the battlement’s edge, turning with soft eyes to Kilmaten. She was anxious, no doubt to go to the group below and find out what was transpiring yet nothing in word nor posture would give this away. For now, that could wait as she moved to Kilmaten’s side giving him a gentle nuzzle. “Ready, little one?” the inquiry a hushed whisper. “Shall we lift our voices for your father?” She would enlist others to assist if they so chose to help in placing of stones over his frame to protect from scavengers.

    [15:41] * Kwa`ani settled again in front of her mother to once again, hopefully, block the weird one’s view. “I failed mother. I have neigther name nor scent and he easily saw through my ruse to get it.” She knew details were important. “It seems he is after stories, always saying a ‘story for a story’ and Kova trying to get information from him.” She remembered something else that was said, “He’s here to get the stories for someone else based on a question kova asked.” Her closer inspection revealed little, “He looked to be just an ordinary wolf but talked using strange words and seemingly in riddles.” Her gaze remained riveted to the group and not upon her mother as she wanted to miss nothing.

    15:43] * Faolan regarded all the offers of stories and offered up a small chuckle. A warm chuckle; nah one of dem empty n’ cold ones.  Un ‘tit rien tout neuf dans une boîte sans fond…yeah, he warned a offers like this. A bottomless box indeed. I trust who you say you are, I do but dis was the story I was ro-day about. You been hospitable and I, mais, I been gone far too long. Unless you wish to add a story and hear one in turn, den I best be on my way.  He’d wait a turn or two to see what an agreeable exit he could muster would be.

    [15:49] * Shukie would lift her head to the heavens once more, singing for Nova, his time with the pack, his guiding Karya home and of his return only to lose his life doing so. Her song was also for his mate and daughters lost so short a time before. Her song would drift off after assuring his line would continue via his son. The howls would echo far further for the height they were at. She knew it would get the attention of those below if for nothing else that it be known she was there, watching.

    [15:50] * Kilmaten would go up quite close to shukie and turned to face his father. He planted himself down on the earth barely touching shukir as he listened to what she said. He was ready. With a nod he lifted his head at her words and to call out to the others that were below. His dad could soo  finally rest, and that made him feel good. Not having to deal with all the bumps of their transport over to their current location.

    [15:56] * Kajika finally made it to the bottom of the spiraling stairs and left it at the bottom so that he didn’t load it up with stones and increase the distance that he would have to carry it back. Looking for stones would be weird when the ground they were standing on could be considered a giant one, but so was picking out flowers and other things in a field of grass, he just had to direct his attention for the specific things that he would be looking for. Loose stones and rubble could have been found anywhere but he decided to start his search right around the ruins, finding decent sized rocks. While some were square in appearance, others were rounded with age and possibly with the intent of fitting into round places. He was on his way to drop another such stone onto the sled when he heard the sound of their howls from up above, the height that they were at broadcasting their volume and paused for a moment out of respect before continuing with his task. The sled was nearly half full but full enough that he didn’t want to add much more to it and still pull it up by himself. Just as he had seen Fia do, he took hold of the ‘handle’ and would start to walk backwards up the stairs slowly. If rocks fell off then it wouldn’t be the end of the world, but he didn’t want to make more than 3 trips if he could help it.

    [16:03] * Kova an ear turned to his words before tilting her head to his last words. “Gone to long?” She wondered quietly what that meant before she looked back to the wolf. She still hadn’t caught his name just yet while the others had. She thought quietly for a moment before she would offer in turn. “One more story.” she added “There are two sister wolves who traveled a great distance with their adopted mother. They knew not of their past entirely but where born in a great pack only to have left and be raised elsewhere. Sights and sounds of oceans and streams meeting one another where not uncommon. Large animals of all white and fat where ever abundent. They traveled long and far to reach their place of birth only to find a pack had occupied it. All the while their travels had left them wondering if this was truley their path, or, the path of anothers making. Voices in their heads guided them on a journey perhaps not entirely of their own. Voices of old ones who have long sense passed from this world but some how spoke to them in this one. A quest had been sent forth for them to follow their destiny and find those who owned those voices. Now… a tale to spin quiet a fantasy I would wager…” she paused for a breif moment before she continued after clearing her throat and shifting against the slight pang of pain in her fresh wounds. “… one might even call these wolves crazy, but after a long journey to the first pack’s territory they came across ruins, much like the ones here I would guess…” she pointed to the ruins the pack currently rested within for reference. “Two wolves appeared in these visions. One of these visions was the matriarch of this pack. It took over the body and mind of another and the will was done against the fold of darkness by the puppet. The puppeter never found and when the wolf awoke who was possesed found nothing but more questions to what they thought they sought where answers….” she would leave it there. No doubt there was much more depth to her story but it would be odd another she brought up mentioned those of old. Ancestors. Weird and fantastical things that surely couldn’t exist in the real world.

    16:11] * skydancer_ tilts her head at that entire sentence of what sounds like nonsence to her, though it clearly means something to him so who knows. shifting uncomfortably as kova starts the story she listen with some interest none the less as it gave a few new tidbits of information. “you make a good stor tell kova.” she comment wondering which story she’d be able to tell if any she shifts maybe not today..

    [16:20] * Faolan took in all that was said in a stride that was unbroken; like one not surprised. It did not seem a sort like dis one to try and surprise him or gauge his reaction to such a tale, but he did not know this one  I hear tale of a similar story told from another’s mouth. Dis place be where you got dem marks, and yet I don’t be seein’ dem sight or nah. The puppeteer be many a thing and you best not be searchin’ for it for a time. Nah till your alpha there be all tidied up.  A tongue loosened was a gift for someone. He just reckoned his guess would just as much give his observations away as much as the truth of em. He would guage the truth against his words all the while givin’ a last bit a advice. You got the gris gris, but vengeance…she don’t break even, cher. She ain’t ever in it but for herself.

    [16:30] * Shukie heard long before seeing Kajika upon the stairway with the .sled and what sounded like a few stones rattling on down that slipped from it as he slowly ascended. Stepping back from the edge she leanded down resting her muzzle atop Kilmaten’s for a short moment then turned to go assist Kajika bringing his burden up the rest of the way. Once there were again atop the battlement she would begin moving the rocks to form a base around Nova, then slowly build upon it little by little. It would take a few more trips but in time their task would be done as she waited for Kilmaten to place the final stones over Nova’s heart if that be where he so chose to place his. “Now your father shall be protected from all for as long as possible.” her tones patience adn full of reverence for Nova.

    [16:37] * Kilmaten finished howling for is father and heard Kajika coming up with rocks as well, bounding over to the pile in order to help here and there with the smaller ones as he placed them around his father. They went back and fourth many times before coming to the final few stones he had. He placed a few at his heart and the final few at his head. He walked back to shukie and Kajika to look at the grave they made. “He thought the ruins were really cool.” He said lightly as the situation was being more and more understood.

    [16:40] * Kova she would tilt her head as this wolf seemingly had heard it before at least similiarly. Where? Who? She would think quietly on this. “Tidied up?” she would offer in question. “I would have to agree with you on that one as well..” she said with lightness “Besides.. .I don’t believe I received your name? What was it?”

    [16:50] * Kajika let out a small gruff of appreciation as Shukie assisted in pulling up the rocks the rest of the way. Once he got to the top, he let the object fall and flexed his jaws, now free of the weight of the stone and the sled before picking up one of them to place beside Nova until the rocks were stacked neatly around him. It was a lot faster with the two of them helping and he was sure to thank them for it once they were done. He leaned over to nose Kilmaten knowing that it wasn’t easy to be in his place. “Well now the ruins are a place that he can call his own. He fought bravely for it.”

    [16:51] * skydancer_ listens quietly “so odds are are will be possible to find her? she asks after a few moments ignoring the comment about their alphas health the less said about thatto a loner the better. “any suggestion where to start looking, when the, situation permits?,” she asks .and almost more important why would we want to do such a thing?” she looks toward phoenix

    [16:55] * Atraya would be resting beside Kwa`ani and an ear turned towards the sounds of a howl. Several infact. She wasn’t aware of the passing of Nova and so the tone of which caused her great concern. What happened? She would frown and look to where she thought her daughter was. “Kwa?”  she asked in question. “Did something else transpire?”

    [16:57] * Shukie flashed Kajika a smile in thanks for all his hard work and help in taking care of Nova. She was becoming the queen of the burial detail and hoped none would need this service for a rather long long while. “Aye, Kilmaten, the ruins are cool in their own way. They are of a time long long ago, well before even my time.” Few had heard such soft tones from her, except perhaps the alpha pups when they were little. More in general, “It is time I go see what is happening below. Join me if you wish or remain here” the option open ended. WIth a nuzzle to both she turned and began to descent the stairway down to the base of the ruins.

    [16:59] * Faolan had taken note of the calls and their tone. There’d be no mistaking that; a story in and of itself. He made no remark to its cause and instead answered Kova  Healed as some would call it, but wounds are more than what’s seen. I reckon she’d be fit to move soon enough…if’n that is all you’re after.  It was winding down now and he had best be on his way.  Phoenix, mon cher. It’s a name and I’d be sharin’ a parting story all quick like for the hour is later than intended. It’d answer ya both if’n that suffice? I said you had the gris gris, dat’s true if ever true was but ain’t but the half of it. The world, she cassée la paille…she a broken one, she is. You have the gris gris, but so do everyone else. Penses-y, you ever come across a wolf who ain’t just a wolf? You ever roh-day far enough you find something intact and not a ruin a da doux parfumé? Le vieux temps, dey passed and we but the kin that left. Dat a story worth a story told, and I said enough a what I know. You got an envee for more, den you be lookin’ for me not ‘her’. She don’t itch much, mon cher, but when she do; she scratch hard. Best not be the feather unda da nose, ya feel me?

    [17:02] * Kilmaten nodded in approval to what Kajika had told him. Shukies words caused his mind to do a ‘woooaahhh’ and let out a smile. He debated on wether to stay or go, eventually figuring he would tag along and if he got tired, return up to where his father lay and sleep there. Kilmaten nuzzled back and followed closely to Shukie and giving Kajika a tailwave.

    [17:03] * Kwa`ani didn’t shift to look at her mum but responded in hushed tones. “Nova died while you were resting in your deep sleep. His wounds too severel to survive them despite the efforts made.” Realization dawned taht her mother likely did not know the outcome in detail, providing what info she knew, of Darth making the killing blow.” her tones barely a whisper that they would not travel to the stranger. “the other heal and are expect to full recover.”

    [17:04] * Kova this wolf was very interesting to her. She enjoyed stories, especially the ones their alpha male would tell. She missed lorenights as well. Perhaps this would spark the inspiration for herself to maybe kindle that anew, but for now, it was time to focus on the pack and getting everyone better. Kajika no doubt had his paws full. Perhapes it was then the “tidied” up made sense to her and an embarassing gesture drew across her face. It was there she would’ve heard the howling mournful tones of the weolves now honoring Nova. She hadn’t been aware just yet of the males passing and would no doubt get a hint of it now. When he introduced himself she would dip her head mutually in response. “I do” she offered in kind as she took his story in. There was much to absorb within those words and more so, what he shared and it’s potential meaning. She could perhapes sense his eagerness to find his path elsewhere and so she kept it short. “the one who has no name, if we wish to find that one, perhaps you might favor another storytellar the chance to offer one to be rewarded with such? You know… without having tickle anyones noses…”

    [17:13] * Shukie and the others would be moving at a leisurely pace in the direction of the group and the alphess after paying final tribute to Nova. Head up, ears forward, tail high she moved with a calm grace as she moved her lower jaw in minute movements easing the use of the muscles in placing of the stones. Distraction from his father’s passing would be good adn what better way than being tossed in a group of wolves, even a stranger for with all present, there’d be no chance of harm. As the distance closed she would announce her presence in typical fashion.

    [17:13] * skydancer_ hums none commitedly how much did this wolf no. but she is awareof injuries to the heart and mind even if she has little knowledge to help one such. at the howl ringing across the valley floor her ears swivel forward. “i’ll keep that in mind. no sense in annoying one as powerfull as her.” she repleis adding her mind Yet. afterall it might proof possible to deal with that after all. she’d not get her hopes up but she isn’t discounting the option either.

    [17:20] * Kilmaten paced himself with Shukie on her right side as they made their way down towards the gathering of wolves. He tried to remember if he had met any of them that were there before, but he doesnt remember.”

    [17:25] Ayaka would have earlier excused herself as Kova had joined skydancer_ in greeting the new male, and she felt it safe to move off to take a circuit around the ruins and the surrounding area to make sure that all else was well. She’d not come across anything out of the ordinary and as she arrived back, she’d heard the howls mourning Nova and would have even joined her own voice in, though her tones would be distant. Now as she neared the other’s once again, she would scan them to see how they seemed to be faring. At ease, was her initial impression, based on what she could see of Kova at least, though she couldn’t yet hear their conversation. She glanced past them to see if Atraya was still in the area as before, if so she would head towards the Alphess.

    [17:28] * Faolan took the time to consider the question for what it was worth. Would he likely be sent back? Would the old grump be that curious to this story than the others to do so  Mais, I ain’t in the know to reward you an audience with the conteur, but he be a mind a his own. He one dat don’t tickle. You find me with a good enough story and I find him long enough to tell your tale. Den maybe he be wishin’ to speak to you. I don’t guard my tracks, mon cher. The dead don’t need to. Bonjour, dames, lâche pas la patate… it ain’t all two left paws out there.  He was a stiff one, he was. Dey be talkin’ his ear off for nearly a night and he had a place to be. Southwards he’d go like a little dirty fleck of snow on the yonder…

    [17:29] * Fianna after helping get Nova to the top of the tower, would have stayed to honor the brute as well, despite the fact that she hardly remembered him. She’d have helped place the stones, the act a small bit healing for her, feeling with each one a fraction of her burden lifting, as if laying it to rest. It helped the ache within, to focus on another, and so she would, with a depth of focus that sent everything else to the background. Her own song would lift with the rest, and now she would be trailing them as they left the ruins behind, quiet. Her reluctancr returning with each step as she knew her sister was ahead.

    [17:34] * Kova she wondered quietly if Phoenix happened to come across their missing alpha or alpha’s son. He seemed to convey the sense of well traveled paths. She however thought there was no sense in asking just yet. She turned to skydancer and listened intently to her words before looking back towards Phoenix. She would give a nod to her head “Safe travels” however the end part to his words in regards to being dead was something that caused her great pause. Wait… what? She rose up to all fhours but the wolf had already moved off. She narrowed her hues in great thought before shaking her head, ruffing slightly before turning towards Sky. “Perhaps sometime in the coming days I will seek out those tracks…”

    [17:36] * Atraya had been beside Kwa`ani and she offered to her insight into the smells and cents of the new wolf. Though she didn’t have a name she wadgered a good idea from the males scent. She wasn’t about to persue him just yet but would feel the flick of an ear turn to the sound of approaching paws. Ayaka. She would however find her face turning to the north and a frown visible upon her pained face. »»

    [17:36] <Atraya> »» “My heart hurts for knowing of his passing…” the winds nor songs of the dead would not lie and she would only let loose her own mournful howl at the news of Nova’s passing. It would subside with the others before she would sigh. “I’m so sorry to hear this… he was a good wolf. A good prospect to this pack. His sacrafice will be remembered.”

    [17:39] * skydancer_ tilts her head slightly,well that is interesting. “you are awfully substantial, for a ghost.” she comments dryly thinking odds are she might sense him next time or maybe the meat suite is hiding such from her. “safe travels.,” waiting until he was out ear shot before turning toward before speaking up. “mind if I with you? the stories he must know.”

    [17:40] * Kajika walked on the other side of Shukie and was a little more distracted by his surroundings at the moment. As it got warmer, he told himself to lounge in some of the warmth one of these days. When he got closer to the gathering of wolves, he immediately noticed that there was a wolf that he didn’t know and moved a little bit closer to Shukie to quietly whisper in a tone that only she would hear and others would have to

    [17:40] * Kajika strain to do so. “I don’t know who that is. Do you have any idea?” He listened to their conversation that they were having for a moment and wouldn’t contribute just yet without knowing what was being said.

    [17:42] * Kwa`ani gazed toward the approach of Ayaka while responding to her mother, “Aye, he fought valiently and without so much as a question. Doing to aid us.” pausing slightly, “Take a care mum that you do cause the wounds to begin weeping again.” Spotting the beta, Kajika and her sister her breath ceased briefly, giving a toss of her head. Her temper tantrum of the day before was passed. Nova’s son, Shukie, Kajika and Fianna come now, mum.” Doing what she can to be the fae’s eyes.

    [17:42] <Calder> There wasn’t much in the way of closure from his presence to the pack and there wasn’t much left to say. He was perhaps lucky to even keep his hide. He was to the south of the ruins in a small outcove of rock and stone offering whatever solace he had at that moment to mull over the next step. At least he could do is apologize and try to make some sort of amends. He came to grips already that his ‘life’ was all but a lie, at least, in the promises that where given. How gulliable. But it was his upbringing. He didn’t have a family like most and becaus of it, he was there to mold. There would be a long drawn out sigh from the black males parted muzzle and he narrowed his deep amber hues before rising. “Very well then.” it was there he started off towards the south and back to where the ruins where.

    [17:49] * Shukie gave a shake of her head to Kajika in answer to his question. Rather than approach the group than had met the stranger.. strange being the key part of the title she would come to find out, and all could be told once should they come to the alphess location. Again she called softly to Atraya and the others, mostly to give Atraya a current location finder for her as she drew nearer, letting her paws fall harder upon the ground than normal the she might hear or perhaps fell the approach. “Greetings, my alpha. It is good to see you awake at long last. Nova has been laid to rest, his son Kilmaten is with us. I shall take responsibility for him as I told Nova I would do so, tho the entire pack would see to his welbeing.” As she spoke she lowered her frame to the ground in front of Atraya in part to show Kilmaten how to approach her.

    [17:58] * Kilmaten saw the few wolves in more and more detail as they got closer. He veered to a hault once they got to the gathering and listened and watched what Shukie was doing to copy her. “Hi Atraya.” He said somewhat enthusiastically after lowering his icy white body to the ground like Shukie showed.

    [18:10] * Atraya would hear Shukie’s voice and offer a dip of her head slowly “Hello Shukie” she said in low tones. Her face still swollen but the ice and snow had helped a great deal. The darkness still consumed her for the most part and she shook a little with pain but flicked an ear to a new voice. She would sniff the air quickly wondering who it was. “Son?” she questioned lightly. Having already been informed by Kwa`ani she would finally reach her nose out for Kilmaten to try and touch. “Come here child… let me smell you.”

    [18:13] * Kilmaten looked up at Shukie before moving closer to Atraya. She was the Alpha? Thats like

    [18:14] * Kova she would be left seated there while Phoenix moved off. SHe wrinkled her nose in thought before turning to skydancer_. “What did yo uthink of him?”

    [18:15] Kajika saw Atraya up ahead and studied Shukie’s motions and actions. Standing right beside her, he was able to sense a little bit of the vibrations that she made, but he was moreso able to hear them. Seeing her awake, she didn’t seem any different, at least not at first. He had to mindfully step just a little bit louder so that she knew that he was tagging along. His name having little to do with how he traveled, but he had grown used to stepping off lightly and quickly that it would take some getting used to when approaching Atraya. He might just decide to verbally announce his approach instead but chose to do so at another time. While Shukie reported their recent going ons, he glanced about her frame to see the other signs of injury were starting to ebb but still present if he looked hard enough. When she called Kilmaten forward, he glanced back at the young male and swung his nose and muzzle up in a gesture that would seem to say “Go on.”

    [18:16] * Ayaka reached Atraya and Kwaani’s location just after Shukie and the others as she’d taken her time in walking there, observing Phoenix’s departure with curious hues as she past by and finally reached the group with a chuff. She glanced toward Kilmaten with sympathetic and sad hues, but would give the pup his space for now, sure he might be overwhelmed. Concentrating on Atraya then she would settle and wait until the other’s

    [18:16] * Ayaka had finished speaking to speak her own thoughts. She would offer a smile to Kajika, and the others should they glance her way.

    18:19] * Atraya wiggled her nose towards the young pup as she would then find his fur and brush her nose along it, to keep his scent for her memory and for future use. He was indeed young. She heard Shukie’s pledge to keep an eye on the younger and the pack to teach him their ways. She was sad to hear he had lost his father so young, but knew well the trials of such. She would be aware of Kajikas presence and dipped her head in his direction.

    [18:19] * Fianna would stop before reaching her mother and Kwa`ani, instead sitting on the outskirts and wrapping her tail around her as she avoided glancing her sister’s way, instead looking at her mother, then back toward the ruins, a soft breath escaping her as she tilted her muzzle upward toward the sky. Were there stars yet? She longed to see them for they always have her such peace, reminding her of the vastness of the world.

    [18:25] * Kwa`ani saw her sister approaching adn as she drew near Fianna would see Kwa`ani drop her head, ears folded down as if in apology, looking out from beneath lowered lids. Her tail would tuck under if she wasn’t already laying down. When her sister didn’t come over a pained chuff of greetings would be heard. Her entire posture one of apology that her sister was too far away to put to voice. The others would see her changed posture and position, perhaps wondering at the reason. She had not behaved as a sister nor had she behaved as a WolfSpirit which had her moving even lower upon the ground, if that were even possible.

    [18:31] <Kilmaten> – … The top dog.. Literally. He would bring his muzzle near hers and if she tried to smell around he would move for her. ‘Maybe i can get some food soon..’ He thought as his little tummy  grumbled. Once the Alpha was done he would go back to Shukies side.

    [18:32] * Shukie was rather attuned to Kwa`ani’s behaviors and easily guessed that it was in reflection of teh quarrel between the two sisters teh day prior. As the alpha greeting the pup she gazed over toward Ayaka, “What news do you have?” Assuming the fae had been out seeking sign of prey but had not seen Ayaka when she was part of the exchange with the stranger. In example she scooted back just a bit from Atraya before sitting up should the other wolves have things to share. She leaned over to nose Kilmaten giving him a nod of approval at his greeting when he sat beside her once again.

    [18:39] * Ayaka perked as she was addressed and glanced to Shukie. She shifted her paws a bit, settling more comfortably before she spoke, Includinfmg both the Alphess and the beta in her glances, as well as Kajika. “I scouted to the south, as well as in a wide ring around the ruins, to the east and west. I came across tracks of what I assume to be the blacktail deer we hunted earlier, but.. There were also signs of other animals as well, more than I saw in the later days of our territory. We could likely find game not far off. Just a bit lower and the season has a much stronger hold, there are grasses and valleys where game likely would roam.”

    18:49] * Fianna pulled her gaze from the sky as she heard the pained and sorrowful chuff from Kwa`ani, the sound pulling the raw strings within her. She didn’t move at first, watching her sister lower and tuck her tail. A her flashed through her again that the only family she’d had around for months had been willing to hurt her that way. As she had the thought, though, the anger cooled. Had she hurt Kwa`ani by trusting Calder? By him her attention? Did her sister know that she’d felt her heart tangled somehow with him as well? Most likely… She felt embarrassed, confused… How did she untangle it all? Unaware that very male was heading toward them, she rose and walked stiffly toward the group to settle closer now to Kwa`ani and Atraya{dinner}. She would stoop first to offer her mother a tender lick on the cheek, careful of her wounds, then turned to regard Kwa`ani carefully. “Sister…” She murmured, lowering running her nose gently along the fae’s ruff before stepping back, should the fae not want the gesture. Then she lowered too onto her belly, tail tucked and wars slightly back as she licked her muzzle. “Kwa..” Was all she said.

    [18:55] * Kajika smiled a friendly smile back to Ayaka as he watched as Atraya leaned forward to take in Kilmaten’s scent. He dipped his head slightly to Atraya when he figured out that she was nodding to him, even if he was unsure if the action would be seen. He listened to Ayaka as she spoke of the deer and other animals in the area. When she spoke of grass and the valley, he imagined trees and other plants that could be used to heal the pack from their injuries. But he hadn’t gone that far in either direction but his tail moved in an involuntary wag when he thought about it.

    [18:57] * Kwa`ani returned the gesture in kind in attempt to reassure her sister there was no ill thoughts or will towards her. “Forgive me, sister.” She knew there was no amount of words that could be added to the wavering words, cocking her head to the side to lick under her sister’s chin. After a long period of quiet, “We are family, and all the other shall have in blood. The pack, too, is our family.” She went silent yet again for a bit, “I am sorry for any hurt or pain I inflicted as it was not warrented.” the wavering tones perhaps spoke far more than the words ever could. In a last form of apology she bared her neck. No doubt her mother would sense the tension between the two.

    [19:10] * Shukie would nod to Ayaka, “That is good news!” at least they’d have a direction to go for sustinance once Atraya was ready to travel, and the other injured wolves provided that was the path Atraya chose. “Klimaten, this is Ayaka, a most excellent hunter and she can teach you much as can Kova who is over there a ways.” With a smile to Ayaka, “Ayaka, this is Kilmaten, son of Nova.” the youth, perhaps about 3 months or so, would have a hard time of it. He’d yet to nudge muzzle for food and figured he’d perhaps passed that stage for the hardships he’d been through. Still, it was the regurgitated food which helped to pass on the immunities from the adults. In time he’d be properly introduced to all the members of teh pack. “Fianna you’ve met and that fae there who is cowering is her sister, Kwa`ani. They had a disagreement recently and this looks to be a time of making up.”

    19:28] * Fianna would move closer to Kwa`ani, absent mindedly listening to Shukie’s introductions. For now she kept her focus on her sister. “Kwa… Most of what you said was true. ” Her voice dropped to a tortured whisper. “I hold the guilt for mother’s sight being taken because I allowed Calder to play me. Maybe if I been stronger… We wouldn’t have walked into that. He helped us find her. I didn’t only go with him because my.. My

    [19:28] * Fianna heart wanted me to.. I went because I needed to save mama, for our pack as well as for me. She needed us toake hard choices and I thought that I was making the right ones. Even if it meant my own death in the end. I.. Never meant for mama of even Caitlyn to take my place.” Her voice faded and grew rough as her breath hitched in guilt and sorrow. She didn’t glance at the other’s who could no doubt hear her words.. But

    [19:28] * Fianna the pack had been affected. It was only right they heard.

    [19:38] * Kwa`ani rested her head across her sister’s shoulders in what she hoped was comforting. “We all have been played sister, as was told to us before the great battle.” murring gently. “Mother did as she needed to do, just as all of us have.” she grew quiet again. “Shukie kept us separate, She and I saught out Calder to find out what hold they had over him. Shukie wanted to help him that we all would be helped. We could never find him.” She began to groom her sister gently. “From what was said, it was to be the oldest, which was me.” she said between licks. “None of us bears any guilt for what was. We were played and we are All the stronger for it now and with new perspectives.” Where all this was coming from she didn’t know but it was truth, truth she knew to be.” Her own voice wavered mightily as she spoke.

    [19:46] * Ayaka remained quiet as Shukie spoke, then the sisters near Atraya conversed.  She listened to their words to each other, making peace.

    [19:46] * Atraya would have some how drifted in and out of sleep for her body demanded it whether she wanted it or not. Her lids would’ve been closed but they had no other choice for the swelling would keep them there. So it was hard to tell if she was sleeping or awake save for movement. She would have awoken at some point to hear the conversation between her daughters and there would be a soft voice that seemingly interjected itself between the two. “Never regret a day in your life. Good days give us happiness and bad days give us experience…”

    19:47] * Kova after the odd interaction with the wolf Phoenix she couldn’t help but feel a sense of wonderment. She rose to all fours quickly and shook her pelt. She nosed Sky before she saw there where several gathered near Atraya. She would see her sisters and start towards them. She also saw Kajika which lightened her heart knowing there was one more skilled then her in the ways of healing.

    [19:47] * Kova after the odd interaction with the wolf Phoenix she couldn’t help but feel a sense of wonderment. She rose to all fours quickly and shook her pelt. She nosed Sky before she saw there where several gathered near Atraya. She would see her sisters and start towards them. She also saw Kajika which lightened her heart knowing there was one more skilled then her in the ways of healing.

    [19:49] <Calder> He would have decended down the slope towards the direction of the ruins. By now he was close and could see the outline of it in the distance. The black male would have taken a rather slow and mind bending pace. There was a lot to think about. A lot to think on what he was going to say. What he was going to do.

    [19:52] * Ayaka making peace* and her own heart knew of what they spoke. Things were not easy, emotions, decisions. Regret would hold them all in a way, but they would be stronger, as Kwa`ani had said. She was proud of the fae’s for working through their anger. When Atraya spoke she perked, nodding to that as well, forgetting momentarily the Alphess could not see. She wondered if the lead fae had heard her report on her findings during, and would clear her throat eventually. “Alphess, I scouted the lands around here and found tracks of the blacktail we hunted as well as other animals further south, where the land drops seemingly into the hold of summer. ” She reiterated her report, just in case.

    [19:58] * Shukie grinned at the two faes glad to see things being worked out between them without prodding from others. At Ayaka’s retelling she nodded again. Her mind went to the stranger she’d seen who departed just prior to her arrival. “What of the stranger? What’d he want? He was here long enough. I didn’t get the sense he was looking for a pack tho could just as easily be mistaken in that.” Any stranger at present was one to be wary of in her book. She saw Kova heading their way giving a chuft, “Hello Kova, dear sister mine” her tail wagged the closer she got and if she drew close enough would nuzzle gently before inquiring who dat was. Her greeting was also for Atraya to know Kova approached.

    19:59] * Fianna A feeling of peace, washed over her at Kwa`ani ‘s words, and while it didn’t clear her feelings of guilt completely, she felt the better for her reconciliation with her sister. She laughed softly then and nuzzled her sister under the chin, lifting her own muzzle and rubbing it along the top of Kwa`ani ‘s head. “Older only by a few moments sister.” She said fondly, before looking with surprise and Atraya and leaned over to nuzzle her mother, soaking up her whispered words in silence.

    [20:15] * Ayaka was silent as she thought back to the tracks she’d seen, her head tilting some as she did so. “I do believe that the bulk of the tracks and signs were not blacktail but something larger. I don’t think bison, for the tracks were not so deep as to be made from something as heavy as a bison but.. Caribou more likely. I didn’t see any herds other than their tracks, but they seemed plentiful, their scents recent. It would take perhaps another scouting or two, longer ones, to observe and gather numbers if that is what you wish.”

    [20:17] * Kova she would brush her nose along her sisters. “Hello Shukie” she said with a softness. She would murmurr lightly as she hadn’t seen her in a long time. “How are you???” she licked her chin quickly.

    [20:22] * Shukie had no doubts in her alpha’s abilities to lead them for her mind was as sharp as always and if her hunch was right, it’d become even sharper as time passed. There was the question tho of what it meant for her to become the morrigan. She was roused from her thoughts at her sister’s approach and greeting, eyes opening just as kova slurped her. “i’ve missed you sister!” leaning in to rest her head against kova’s shoulder. “Who was that?” She inquired after sitting back again since most were there that she’d seen interact with the brute.

    [20:27] * Fianna would have sat back up and nuzzled Kwa`ani one more time before shaking her pelt, feeling a bit more relaxed now, glancing upward at the sky again to see if the stars yet peeked out. As she did so she thought of Faolan, which reminded her of something… She stood and turned to Atraya, “Mama, a while back when I stood before the Mykeer alone, he said I had carried him my fathers ashes…” She paused.” Why would he say that? “Calder have me that pouch to give the Mykeer… ” She knew she was likely butting in on Ayaka’s question regarding the herds but, the thought was a urgent one.

    [20:27] * Fianna that? “Calder have me that pouch to give the Mykeer… ” She knew she was likely butting in on Ayaka’s question regarding the herds but, the thought was a urgent one.

    [20:30] * Kova her nose came to brush along Shukie’s once more and gruuued. Her tail waving quickly behind her in the snow. “I’ve missed you!” she offered with a gentle tone “Who was whom?” she tilted her head softly. Unsure of whom she might be refering to, unaware she saw she was talking with Phoenix.

    [20:40] * Ayaka turned to glance at Kova as her spirit sister conversed with Shukie and she would lean over to nose the fae when she had finished speaking to Atraya, glad to at least see her up and moving around. Her gaze traveled to Kova’s injuries, assessing how well they were healing. As Fianna spoke up about the pouch Calder had given her before, it reminded Ayaka of the key they had not used, as well as the pouch the previous Morrigan had given Kajika. When there was a pull she would speak up, “Atraya I also have a key still, the one we found in the cavern tree below, and Kajika has a pouch filled with water from some fountain that your sister Caitlyn thought would be important..” There were so many loose ends it seemed.

    [20:43] * Atraya her ear flicked towards Fianna’s words and her brow furrowed in thought. She would look off for a long moment. Surely he coudn’t mean literally… right? “I… am not sure. Was there anything unusual about it? The smell? What did it smell like?”

    [20:44] * Shukie didn’t persue the question right off at Fianna’s questions to the fae’s mother, not having been aware of that detail for she and Kwa had been elsewhere. “Faolan’s ashes?” she’d not meant to utter that aloud. And when Ayaka spoke up with all her details and inquiries she realized just how Much she had missed. She remained silent for a change to simply listen. This of course, would shock kwa and the other pups for the ability to be quiet. She straightened up perking to every detail offered finding none too small.

    [20:47] * Kova Ayaka would observe the wounds where already closed and would heal as best the ycould. She probably could use some more rest and little moving around. She would nose her gently in return, tail waving but it was at the sound of Fiannas words she drew her attention to Atraya and the rest. Surely… not literally.

    [20:49] * Kwa`ani whined aloud when it dawned on her what Fianna was talking about, talking about her father. “Noooooooooo. Dat not him!” she refused to believe it. “No!!!!” Mum was sposed to be the Morrigan now did that mean papa was going to be the myrkeer? Or was he just dead like Nova. “Mum! If you da Morrigan, will you have to leave us like your sister did?” She’d understood enough at the battle seen before all got going and killed the bear.

    [20:50] * Fianna shook her head, wishing she had more information.. “I..” “I didn’t scent anything other than antiquity and the scent of what I assumed was.rhr pouch itself. It was only given to me as I ran to contront the Mykeer, and I did. Not have a chance to investigate it.” Not for the first time did she wish she had been able to get Calder to be straightforward with her. “Perhaps.. He put the pouch in his lair somewhere?” She asked finally, hoping against hope that it had not truly been her father’s ashes.

    [20:51] * Atraya it was as if tokens of a quest where being presented to the quest giver. She thought long and hard about it. What it all meant and why. She thought for a longer moment before offering to Ayaka. “Was there any indication as what they where for…?” her ears pinned back at Kwa`ani’s loud tone but it was understandable. She nudged her lightly with the tip of her nose and it was odd she could almost already reach out and touch someone close without seeing them. She allowed Fianna to add anything additional. “Where did the pouch go?”

    [20:54] * Ayaka looked to Kajika, because he was the one who would know what the water might be for, had he fallen asleep? As for the key.. “I do not know what that second key might be for, it was not needed to open your bonds.” She finished, wishing she knew more.

    [20:55] <Calder> As he rounded the last little bend he would be at the ruins already and would have made it up a small step of stairs towards a little look out. Depending on where the wolves where, he would hope for some sort of vantage for the others. He was careful with his trek and trail.

    [20:55] * Fianna tried to remember what the Mykeer had done with it after she set it down, but shook her head, frustration quickly welling again. “I set it on the place you were on the bone pile.. I cannot remember if he took it or not. But if he did.. Would it be perhaps in the place we forced him from from before?* his lair?” She would scan the group there, unaware that Calder would soon loom above them, unless his scent would carry? The group was only slightly away from the ruins to the south.

    [20:57] * Atraya hummmmed in thought as she looked towards the horizon. She would pause in thought but also allowed herself a moment to ignore the twinge in her face. Throbbing and ever present. “We should try and find it… I… ” she paused, swallowing a pit of emotion before she continued. “Just to make sure.”

    [21:00] * Kova would look between Fianna, Ayaka and the others now as she would narrow her hues at the conversation. She recalled back to that night and closed her eyes, trying to think if she remembered seeing the pouch being picked up. It was there, she did. “Yes, I remember… he grabbed it with his claw and moved behind that cave behind the bone pile.”

    [21:04] * Fianna remembered that the rest of the pack had arrived just after the Mykeer had turned and.was disappearing down the cave, for she had faced him that first horrible time alone, because of Calder. His plan. She took a deep breath, hoping Kova was right and they might be able to find the pouch, shoving aside her frustration with a certain male, trying not to.think about the knots that were still her thoughts when it came to him. She looked to her mother, then spoke up. “I can go look for it.” She said softly.

    21:18] * Kova frowned a bit as she didn’t hear her name being among the others. She would flick an ear and offer nothing in rebutle. If she wasn’t chosen, then that was Atraya’s choice. She would no doubt make herself useful.

    [21:21] * Kova looked towards Shukie and then to her question. She would offer a gentle nuzzle to her quickly before offering “Phoenix was his name.” she added.

    [21:23] <Calder> Remained a top the ruins just to the south of perhapes where all the others where. He was was high enough however, his scent might drift to anyone who was just below but it was all a matte rof where the wind was blowing.

    [21:25] * Atraya nodded towards Shukie. The pair seemingly needed some more bonding time and perhaps this was her way to see they work together again. Remembering those bonds and reforging any that might have been split admist a hot ember or two. She looked towards Shukie and then to Kova’s direction. So that’s the wolf’s name. “Which direction did he go?”

    [21:29] * Shukie nodded ot Kova, “I was curious as I saw him from the ruins. He was there a good long while.” Atraya could prod for me as she an ayaka had a task to see too. “It seems there is much mischief afoot still that we need to see about unraveling. “Are you the Morrigan now?” recalling the exchange that fateful night.

    [21:34] * Atraya would look towards the horizon still in thought. She didn’t really know what that meant, or why. “I… don’t know.” she said with a low huff. “Whatever -this- is.. I’m sure in time, it will tell.”

    Role Play Begins


    Chapter 14 – The Aftermath        

    [08:58] * Nightshade stood up and shook her pelt clean, she decided to rest for a while before trying to catch up with everyone else.

    [09:05] * Nightshade hadn’t moved that much, more walking around in the area to observe the happenings.  There was much blood and a carcass of the bear, sniffing around she would also find out some scents and lost parts of furr and some blood splats from the wolves.  Puzzling the situation… she lowered her ears with the realization that some might be bad injured. ” Hopefully the wolves will recover fully.. wished this never would happen..” she spoke while she turned around.

    [09:14] <Shukie> ::Nightshade would indeed see much blood, fur. Some of the pack would have minimal injuries or even none while others had taken a severe beating from Myrkeer. Morning would definitely shed a new light upon the scene. Crimsom stained snow was everywhere, in places it seemed thick for the amounts and a trail of blood would lead away from the frey::

    [09:17] * Kwa`ani remained protectively beside her mother barely tolerating her sister’s presence if she was nearby. She continued to work at Atraya’s facial wounds, still fresh and angry looking. Her expression would likely keep anyone from approaching should they dare.

    [09:17] * Ayaka lay near the ruins once more, her belly full of the bear that had she’d so much of her pack’s blood. She had tended Kova asmuch as she could, and wanted to check upon her Alphess yet the fae seemed to be resting, recovering from her own grievous wounds, wounds that would leave her forever changed. The thought of such a thing made Ayaka look at the world around her with new eyes, eyes that could see, and she wouldn’t take such for granted again. Rising she would look about to see who was around, hoping she could help somehow.

    [09:22] * Fianna was indeed nearby, still curled in the same ball in which she’d been the last day, having hardly moved but to lick at her own injuries. She would be awake, and had sensed her sister’s simmering anger and annoyance, perhaps even catching whatever glances the fae would send her way. She didn’t blame her sister for being angry, she blamed herself as well for her mother’s pain. Perhaps she hadn’t set in motion these events, but she had played her part and played it too well. A shiver ran through her, shaking her frame for even though she knew these things she could it get Calder off of her mind, the brute had gotten his claws into her heart, despite her good intentions. Eventually Fianna would crack and eye open and raise her head to glance at Atraya and Kwaani, saying nothing.

    [09:22] * Shukie and Kilm[a]ten had wandered the day before tho the pup had passed out and slept deeply. She had stayed close by, looking over the young one. Their path had weaved around the area and had found themselves not far from the others. Rising, she would gaze about seeing who stirred. Her mind was on the future and how to take care of Atraya until she became accustomed to the loss of sight. For now, she would encourage all to gorge upon the bear.

    [09:25] * Ayaka would take note of the wolves that were moving, or those that still rested as well. If she could see Shukie from her place, she would rise and quietly move to where the beta was settled, and sit beside her, her silvery hues watching without saying anything for a time. Eventually she would release a breath and watch the air puff away in the still chill climate. “Times have changed us…” She said, her eyes sweeping Kwaani and Fianna, before looking to Shukie. “We all have new scars, inside and out.”

    [09:38] * Shukie nodded to Ayaka, not bothering to speak instead, a quiet nod of agreement. She had tended to those she could whenever the pup dozed off which allowed her to assess the needs of the wolves under her care. After a time she leaned in and gently nuzzled Ayaka, “Thank you.” the emotion was very evident in her tones. “Thank you for all you have done, the pressures I put upon you so long ago to cover for me.” pausing, she sighed heavily, for her not being there and leaving another to take over for her. In a wavering voice, “I had not intended to be gone more than a couple of days….” her words trailed off. Once she regained her composure, for she felt responsible for all that happened to the pack within her care while the alpha was lost to them, with a gentle lick to the fae’s cheekfur, “Your prowress was what enabled us to find Atraya.” Pride was clearly heard in her tones. “Thank you.” She dipped her head, eyes closing briefly.

    [09:42] * Nightshade founded a blood trail which would lead her the way, away from where she was? Who knows. After a deep sigh she followed it with her head low of sadness. Will it lead to a safe location? And from who was the blood? Sniffing she tracked down the trail and set her way forward.

    [09:47] * Ayaka turned to look at Shukie as she listened, her own eyes solemn and serious. She didn’t fault Shukie in the slightest, trusting the fae to have done what she thought necessary. After a moment she would nod. “It was the least I could do, and I grew because of it. I have learned how better to lead, and how better to follow because I’ve seen how hard it is to made tough decisions.” She paused a while longer. She’d noticed Nova’s absence, and would ask on it soon, though she had already guessed what had happened. His injuries had been extreme. A pang shot through her. “Shukie.. All that time you were gone, what kept you? What happened? We feared for your lives.”

    [09:47] * Nightshade felt a deep guilt… for her she had failed, while the pack counted on her, she wasn’t able to take her turn. A steamy cloud appeared from her black nose and some snowflakes clinged on her pitch black pelt.

    [09:49] * Kajika made his way back to where the bear had been killed and so much blood had been shed. It seemed like it had even been more than when the Morrigan first arrived in the territory of the WolfSpirits. The fires that spread were more devastating to the landscape, but that was soon going to recover with time. Here however, the snow might be tainted red until it melted or new snow fell on top of it, he wasn’t sure. But he had been close enough to hear the howl but wasn’t sure of what it was for, but he was hoping that it wasn’t the worst. But it was a deep note of sorrow and several of them joined in and he had to hold his own in because he didn’t want to admit it to himself what he might already know. He was still on the mission of looking for anything that could be used for any of their injuries other than the snow on the ground. But he might have to go back a good amount of the way back to their old territory to find some of the things that he would recognize. But there was little he could do while looking far and wide since such a journey was what split him up from the group before they started fighting the bear. He made his way back at an easy pace, his head and tail slightly lowered as he made his way over the ridge and from the top of it, he could see that there were still a good amount of others that were still here, some of which were huddled in small groups or simply pairs. Fianna rose, slowly. Moving with studied stiffness she stopped next to Kwaani. Her eyes still upon her older sister, and ear flicking. “Kwaani..” Her words were threaded with torment. “I’m sorry.” The words almost to quiet to hear, but she wanted to try.. Perhaps the damage she’d done was irreparable. Why couldn’t her sister understand that her heart had claimed her? That Calder had made bad choices, had betrayed her, yet she sensed something lost within him? Some piece of him that was still trustworthy?

    [10:02] * Kwa`ani ‘s eyes narrowed even more when her sister approached, let alone spoke. Acid dripped from her tones, “Sorry gets no one anywhere.” Her eyes lowered to her mother’s face before slowly returning to Fianna. She too, felt blame, blame for not protecting her sister from what she had and still was going through. Blame for not … With a snarl she rose so suddenly that it would appear she would attack Fianna… All she did, however, was rise up to shake briskly.. sending what she could of the thoughts, feelings and anger away. With a snarl at her self she shook once more when it dawned on her, “You can have your stupid male. Go chase after him.” Time and distance had totally cooled the thoughts of the black male. Calming a bit, “Our mother is gravely injured, now blind.” She knew her actions and words were skipping all over the place, kind of skitzioid fashion and likely not making sense. In time her reactions would settle tho she remained cold. “What is past is. It is the choices we make now, going forward that shall heal all.” she blinked not sure where those last words came from. WIth a very long, drawn out sigh she sat, head bowed contemplating her own failures not considering the successes she had along the way.

    [10:07] * Nightshade eyes set on the horizon, she followed with her nose the blood trail. Those were mixed with new scents also. She stopped for a while to look behind her, was she being followed? Her ears twitched to scan the area.

    [10:14] <Kajika> The closest to him was Nightshade and when he saw her looking back in his general direction, he chuffed over to her to let her know that he was there just a moment before he would make his way over and nosed her shoulder gently when he got close enough. “Good morning Nightshade. I hope you are doing well.” All traces of his previous thoughts were behind him as he figured that even if there wasn’t anything he could do then that he would at least be able to do something now to speed up the recovery that the pack made. With the Mykeer now gone and not a trace of Calder’s own pack, he didn’t think that they had a time or immediate threat to leave this place now. Sure it did feel a bit like a long forgotten battlefield of two different eras in one place, but it felt a little more safer. “Were you about to go down to check on everyone else?” He paused as he asked this, looking over his shoulder at her while his body remained angled down the rest of the slope that led to those down below.

    [10:15] * Fianna didn’t feel anger pointed specifically at her sister, yet, anger she felt all the same, mixed with guilt, horror, loss and many other things she couldn’t or didn’t want to name. Love? What did that look like when it was not for family? How did one reconcile such a thigh when family didn’t approve? She growled at Kwaani’s words, the sound rippling through her rib cage and when Kwaani rose with her own snarl Fianna would the air beside her sister. More than likely neither knew the feelings of blame and guilt the other held, for it was hard to see past one’s own actions. “You see and hear only what you want to see and hear when it comes to Calder. He betrayed us, but why shouldn’t he have? He didn’t know us then, he didn’t know ME. He had his own future to follow. Ever since he met us, he led us to mama. Without him we would never have found her and yet you call him stupid?” She growled again, her frame tense and her eyes narrow. “What do you know of healing? Of my choices? You weren’t here.” She spat the words, her guilt fueling them. Her mother lay blind because of her choices.

    [10:17] * Shukie had caught movement from the corner of her eye near her alpha. Sensing but not close enough to hear the exchange she would well guess for the demeaner of both towards each other. She thought to intervene then decided against it for the fae’s would need to work this out for themselves. At Ayaka’s declaration, “Yes, we have all grown and perhaps changed.. changed for the better.” She too, had questions of what all the pack had suffered through in her absence knowing an idea of what transpired would help her to guide everyone again. “In seeking Calder and his path, we toppled from a cliff into a river.” the we being herself and Kwa`ani. “I lost my memory for a rather long time and Kwa`ani amazingly managed to keep me alive on path towards recovery and the general direction of the pack.” With a soft smile, “Without her, I’d have perished if not for her selflessness in caring for me.” .. this of course was a condensed version. “Most recently I was bound and determined to keep Kwa`ani separate from her sister’s location to ensure at least one if not both of the fae’s remained alive that the alpha lineage continued on should the worst occur.” Again condensing, “Not being aware of just what the role of Calder was, I was intent upon finding him to discover and maybe even aid in his, what i presumed, forced actions.” pausing she leaned in to nuzzle Ayaka before sighing heavily, “We have all been pawns” tho prawns would taste good..*grin* to something not of our doing and been made to take blame where we had none but for the whims of others.” her head drooped lower. ::*many would have to sort out their own feelings of inadequacies’ despite it truly being no fault of their own in most cases.*::

    [10:23] * Nightshade looked closely, where her eyes tricking her? ” Kajika! I’m so glad to see you!” She offered a gentle nuzzle when he was closing up to her, slowly she wagged her tail when she saw her good friend and replied with sad tone ” I’m well…I’m afraid that other might been bad injured..” she paused a bit while she looked at the ground, her tail  slowly lowered and continued ” Yes..I hope that they will forgive me.. wasn’t able to fight..  That Calder brought us in this horrible situation… look at all those blood…” shaking her head with growling tone…

    [10:29] * Kwa`ani snarled once more, fangs flashing and simply turned her back to her sister. With a glance over her shoulder, “You no Nothing of mine nor the sacrifices I made, the torture I suffered.” Her eyes continued to send daggers at her sister, “Go run away to your male.” The emotions ran high and would not calm for a good while. Inside she walled off her heart from her sister, a cold front all that would be seen or felt. She could go tit for tat on choices made, burdens taken on, doubts and self worth. Taking in a deep breath before letting it out slowly she moved then, resettling her frame around her mother’s head to keep any bugs, critters and dirt getting into the wounds. Each it seemed, was still focused up just themselves rather than look at everyone in the grand scheme nor that revealed by Caitlyn and Myrkeer. Unwanted, she did take in the news that without Calder’s help they would not have found their mother. “And just how do you think this has and will affect mother?” It was then she dipped her head to the side that she could not see fia nor fia see her face and eyes as she felt to silence. «end

    [10:38] * Ayaka perked to the sound of snarls, if restrained ones and her hues studied Fianna and Kwaani for a long moment all as she listened to Shukie’s shocking tale. Lost her memory? She looked back at the beta, seeing as the fae didn’t intervene between the sisters, perhaps she should wait as well, but it pained her to see the tension between them. Releasing a breath she curled her tail around her paws. “I am glad she was with you then, it was wise to keep another with you, and, while it seems perhaps the sisters have been separated too much… It seems to have been unavoidable. “Calder… It is hard to tell now that the bear has burdened us with his betrayal, the knowledge be burned our lands. Yet he helped as well, and puppets are we all in the hands of those with more power.” She looked at Fianna, then at Shukie. “If the male comes back… How should he be recieved?” She wasn’t sure, and would seek council from her friend and beta. “I am glad it seems your memories have returned. We would not be the same wolfspirits without you. As for our struggles while you were gone… The newcomer Okkezzon threw extra contention into things, but mostly it was just me pushing us ever on. I had toame the choice to leave some behind on several occasions, hoping they would follow our trails to catch up.”

    [10:41] * Kajika cocked his head slightly for a moment at the mention of Calder. It seemed like more of them had negative connotations of the male than he had. Maybe he hadn’t spent a lot of time around him and his thoughts were only contested by his presence when it seemed like he was trying to show off back in their territory and the tree. Looking back at it now, he could have laughed at Calder’s first look of surprise at seeing Kajika within the lands of the Pack, and since then, he had been using it as some form of leverage against him. But in his eyes, the male had done more than that as he had possibly risked his life for them, and even if things were mostly all settled now, he still didn’t know what he had gotten out of this ‘deal’ but they had been bought to make it in time to save one of their Alphas and some of the blood he smelled wasn’t from the bear or his pack so maybe a kill had been made before? That was nearly a full check in some sort of scoring book, wasn’t it? Maybe he would have gotten along with the other brute if he decided to stick around, but the last time he was able to even scent him in the air was during the fight, and he wasn’t going to go and chase him down if he believed he had reasons to be elsewhere. He wasn’t sure how he would explain any of this however so he decided to inform Night of some of the things that had happened. “Yes, there are some who are injured, but only a few who got hurt badly. And I was unsuccessful in finding anything that might help in healing their injuries, so for now we’ll have to do what we have always done when injured; keep it clean, keep off of it, and take it easy.” »»

    [10:52] * Fianna felt the frozen pain of her sister’s icy response, her own blood hot and confused. She didn’t flinch when Kwaani flashed her own fangs before turning her back, and though everything in her wanted to let loose her full frustration, to tumble Kwaani to the ground with another snarl of anger, she held herself carefully still, counting the moments that passed in heavy silence, until she too could let loose a breath of her own. It didn’t get rid of her frustration or even her anger, yet her desire to pass some of her hurt to Kwaani faded. She didn’t know if she could ever seen Kwaani’s point of view, for as her sister had said, she knew nothing of the torment her sister had gone through. Stiffly she would move to her mother’s head, refusing to acknowledge that her sister wanted to be rid of her. She set herself just beside her mother’s face as well, dipping to run a tongue along the Alphess’s cheek, one ear cocked toward Kwaani. Her action were tender, sorrowful. “MY male doesn’t want me anymore, Kwaani. So you don’t have to worry about him anymore. I was a means to an end for him.” She kept her tones as neutral as she could, trying to hide how deep the pain went under a mask of ice like Kwaani did but she was too hot, too full of emotion and no doubt it leaked through. She didn’t add that she thought there had been glimpses of something more. Her sister didn’t want or care to hear such things.

    [11:05] * Shukie perked at the unknown name, “Okkezzon?” not having scented any strangers recently. “One manages to do as needed” Again she glanced around, this time taking note of the bristling fur near their alpha. The tension was clearly felt even at the distance they were. “I believe this is something they need to work out on their own unless it takes a more serioius turn than just words and bristling fur.” For now, she gave no more thought to the faes. “Nova died yesterday morn. Giving his life for the pack and his son. Tho he never made that final step to become pack, in my opinion he did so during the battle. His son we shall take care of and teach as one of our own.” her tones had softened as she spoke and when the time comes, like the alpha pups and others, can choose to start the journey to become a wolfspirit.” her gaze going to Kilmaten for a moment. “We need a plan of attack, so to speak, of helping Atraya heal and lead the pack until such time she recovers, learning to ‘see’ fully without eyes.” even as she spoke, her mind drifted to her mirror image, Calder. “He, Like us and those gone before have been played. Still, in the end it is our own actions and choices.” Her head tilted slightly, “What hell might we have unleashed in destroying Myrkeer? Did we upset the delicate balance?” tho spoken aloud she had not intended to do so. “Soon, I shall need to get with Kajika on how the others fair; more importantly, what might be done for Atraya? If he knows of anything.” She knew the male was still learning things, having jumped in a few times to guide, much as they all needed guidance as they learned.

    [11:15] * Kwa`ani ‘s hackles rose slightly when Fianna sat beside her, only a low rumble in her ribcage the only signs that she remained near the tipping point when Fianna showed affection for their mother. In reaction, “I ‘can’t’ imagine why he wouldn’t?” her snide and no doubt cutting remark would be one she longed to take back when the fur had settled in the future. She was being overly harsh on her sibling, the soft hearted one of the pups but the fae needed taught a lesson. A growl issued forth, tho Fianna might think it for her, it was in fact one directed at her own self for her thoughts. Maybe, some of her reactions were because Fianna was always around their mother and she was left to her own devices that she now was so possessive of the opportunity to care for her mother. The opportunity to have time with mum, now once again interferred with by her sister. She’d grown up to be more of a lone wolf for the way things had transpired during their youth, learning early on to depend only upon herself. Self pity.. she blanched at thought. THe realization would not change her current behaviors yet.

    [11:16] * Ayaka felt another pang of heart at Shukie’s news, of Nova’s death. She suspected but had hoped Kajika was just perhaps tending him somewhere away, quiet. She bowed her head in quiet honoring for moment, remembering him from long ago. “I agree, he deserves member status in our memories.” She paused, looking around for the pup. “What is his son’s name?” She inquired,”How is he handling… His father’s passing?” She shifted her paws a moment in the snows, turning to.regard the red stained snows that were testament to their victories, and their failures. She noticed Shukie hadn’t answered her questtion regarding how Calder should be recieved should he show himself again, yet perhaps the beta was still deciding within herself as well. Perhaps such remained to be seen. The ebony males future actions, weighed with his past ones, would show how they should receive him. She would allow another breath to escape her muzzle, dipping her head to the rest of Shukie’s words. “It is good you are here to help lead and walk beside Atraya as she regains herself, as learns to walk her new and darker path.” Not for the first did she wish the alpha male were there as well. “I will do what I can as well.” She would add. Fianna did flinch then, at Kwaani’s words and tone, as she froze, frame tense and still. Was her sister’s hatred of her so deep then? Had she made such choices so as to place an uncrossable chasm between them?* she rose slowly from her mother’s side, moving several paces away to regard Kwaani for a moment, her own fur bristled, her guard the only thing keeping the pain from slamming her truly. “If that’s how you feel. then I have nothing left to say.” Her words were stark and each one slow and painful, anger and hurt making them heavy as stones. “Though I care every bit as much for mother as you, I will leave her in your care. I will stay away.” With that she left. Kwaani would take good care of Atraya, she never doubted that for a moment, and for now distance was all she could think of. She ran. Away from Kwaani, away from everyone. Her destination was not at first evident even to her, yet she took the path back toward the caves, back toward the bridge, and the cavern below where her mother had been held for so long.


    [11:19] * Nightshade walked next to kajika heading to everyone else. “Yess.. maybe some iced leafs  so wounds wouldn’t swell.. cleaning could be used with water.. bit besides that.. how are you? Where were you?” Worried she asked him while they might be not that far anymore.

    [11:35] * Shukie nodded quietly and after a fair amount of time, “It is not for us to decide how to receive Calder, that is for Atraya for she is the one most affected by all of this. Unless he returns before she has recovered, that bridge will be crossed then. We’ve too much to worry on for our own family.” It seemed the faes were about to break out into a fight, holding her breath one or both would back down in short order. Kwa she had come to learn could be quite stubborn at the most inopportune times yet would typically redirect after a while if given the time to puzzle out what ever was going on. “The girls are both having to deal with much with the loss of their father, two of their siblings lost or even dead most likely.” Gentled tones, “We all have seen and borne much over the years.” At Ayaka’s mention of Atraya new path, “Perhaps, in the darkness she will see clearer than all of us, if her injuries do not become infected.” All in the pack would be needed to assist in ways they had yet to do. After another long pause, “the bear meat won’t last long. We’ll either need to depart when it’s gone and hope all have healed enough to move or we’ll need to secure food and bring it back. I figure we have a few more days to before we need to cross that proverbial bridge.” A bridge they been on many times for the lack of large prey over the past yearish back home. Would the prey return now, was it worth returning to find no changes? As always the unanswered questions flitted through her mind.

    [11:45] * Kajika smiled when he replied but only faintly. “I am doing alright. Wish there was more I could do right now, but if anything, being here will be comfort enough. And I only managed to get the smallest tuft of fur from the bear but he never got close enough to actually hit me, so for that I am grateful. As for where I have been, I have been looking for anything that might help. I only went as far as just over the ridge. Maybe the cave had some moss in it, but I don’t remember.” He shook his head slightly before continuing and a slight shiver went through his frame, “But I don’t want to go back into those caves. The first time was daunting enough for me to not want to go in there again. And how about you? Are you holding up physically as well? And what about everything else?” He noted that she seemed more affected by the sight of all of the red snow than he would have expected. Even he was a bit shaken when he had arrived and they had suffered the injuries that they had already. »»

    [11:50] * Kwa`ani was taking shallow breaths for she was mostly holding hers. She remained silent, unmoving at her sister’s remarks, even when the fae rose and moved off. It was not until Fianna was a ways away she released the full breath, sides heaving for many long, full intakes of air. She had not yet recognized that it was fear that drove her repsonses and reactions. She didn’t like the way she felt but there was no help for it currently. As the air was released so was her tension, to a degree as she turned back to her mother to tenderly groom the fae’s fur, removing bits of debris, dried blood and dirt from elsewhere on the fae’s frame. She’d heard each, pointedly spoken word. each one making a sharp strike to her. SHe didn’t even know those feelings existed until that very moment. WHere had they come from.. was it part of Myrkeer’s doing even now? Tho it wouldn’t look it to anyone observing her, the effort it took to lower her frame was immense, the weight of all resting squarely on her own shoulders. «end

    [11:58] * Nightshade lowered her head “I’m fine, gladly didn’t got wounded, I stood on a safe distance and by everything what happened.. I froze and couldn’t manage myself to do anything ” she spook with a soft tone with a disappointing flow. “Mental…I don’t know… ” she sighed and agreed with his words.. thinking of going back made she shivers…only the horror thoughts… is enough to refuse. Nightshade looked at Kajika ” I failed into my own eyes…  but..I have no idea how to feel.”

    [12:10] * Ayaka nodded, acceptimg Shukie’s word on Calder. As Fianna stood and ran off, she rose, watching with ears perked. “It does seem so..” She responded to Shukie’s words. “Kova is the closest thing to a sister I ever had. I wouldn’t know how to help them through their tension and pain.” She huffed a breath feeling helpless. She didn’t take note yet of Kajika and Nightshade where they were. Focusing then on what she ‘could’ help with, she glanced around. “I can patrole for game, perhaps the rest of the blacktail herd from before will be bout still… Or the Caribou that I believe Calder’s pack was keeping somehow contained.. ” Her words faded. Where to start looking for those?

    [12:19] * Kajika moved a little bit closer to Nightshade, just enough to brush her shoulder with his own in an act of comfort. “Don’t take it too critically; you’re here still and healthy to help the rest of the Pack recover. If the need for a kill were dire and nearly everyone was injured, we would be at a dangerous crossroad; to hunt and possibly risk further injury or to let starvation run its course.” He knew or at least he thought that he knew that it would be better to take a chance at a hunt even if injured, but starvation leaves not even a sliver of one and would certainly not be a terrible sight to anyone else. Her words even sounded familiar to him as he thought back a little bit on his own history of standing by until it was too late to do anything. “So we have to do our best so that we can bring out the best in everyone else right now. That is how we can be of use until we are able to decide on our next move.” His own words could also be advice to himself that he was overcoming the struggle of believing it fully himself. He and Nightshade were just reaching the edge of the frozen lake where the bear had fallen and he would glance around to see that Shukie and Ayaka were talking while Kwa and Fia were both huddled close to the frame of their mother. Deciding it best to leave the two of them to the conversation that they must be having, he steered the two of them over to Shukie and Ayaka and would let out a small chuff to them once they were close enough. And even though he had stopped talking for a moment, he cast another glance at Nightshade just to see if she understood his words in that things would be alright.

    [12:20] * Fianna slowed her pace once she reached the downs lope past the ruins toward where the bridge back to the caves began. Once her pack and sister were no longer in view, her racing heart still thrumming with adrenaline, anger, guilt, and fear. Would her mother feel the same as Kwaani once she woke? Would it be best for all if Fia never returned. She carefully crossed the bridge, tail drooping low. The further she went the more her energy and high tide of emotion left her bereft and void.  Finally, she entered back into the cave system, the dimness and bones seeming an appropriate backdrop to her current mood, as she went to the bone pile and settled into her hunches to breath for a moment, her hues adjusting to the different lighting. The falls near the walls of the cavern helped to sooth away her thoughts, or perhaps just drown them out for the time being as she focused on the sound of the water. Remembering the peaceful cavern where they’d found a key within the tree, she rose again, this time walking more slowly deeper into the caves.

    [12:24] * Shakira , after waking in the root shelter she had claimed as her own, she would have wandered a few yards out from the root, leaving scent marks around the immediate area to officially stake her claim. After securing her safe Haven, she looked longingly up to the skies, taking note of the weather and how it may change as she prepared to set out to the east once more in search of any signs of the pack still being within the territory.

    [12:29] * Shukie rose as well, then spotting the duo moving about having her attention on Ayaka adn the two faes beside their mother. “Without knowing what they were saying, it will be difficult to help either of them. Hopefully, one or both will open up to someone. We’re all hurting, many i’m sure feeling failures or the blame for perceived actions/inactions. Perhaps taht’s what plagues the sisters?” She smiled at aya’s mention of her, their sister, Kova. “You’ve come to know my syster far better than I do any more.” She knew the bonds of siblings would withstand much but never break. “The girls just need time and some guidance when they are ready to listen.” Leaning over she gently nuzzled Ayaka, “I’m truly greatful for your bond with Kova. It was meant to be.” her tail swaying as she again glanced towards Nightshade and Kajika who now approached, greeting both if they drew near. “Hello Kajika, Nightshade.” She gave her attention first to Kajika, “Have you seen to those with injuries, our alpha’s injuries? She was nailed badly by all, I fear her sight being lost in trade.” She’d not had opportunity to send Kajika to Atraya and wondered if he’d checked on her himself when looking after the others? If that’d been where he was? Giving her attention back to Ayaka, “Aye, seeing if they are near or what direction they took will be good to know. I think it best I stay put for now.” Feeling her own guilt of having left them to their own devices for months on end. Realizing where her thoughts went, she gave herself a paw nudge to stop it.

    [12:29] * Nightshade returned a glance at Kajika and understood, his words soothed her a bit and chuffed towards a greeting.  Finally back with everyone. Her eyes took a good look at everyone and spotted some injuries.. as indeed he had said… some were very bad ” ohgod!…  how is everyone? What happened?! How is the alphess”

    [12:30] * Kwa`ani didn’t need the darkness of the caves for the shadows covering her within. She was numb for many reasons, losing herself in the tending of her mother until such time the fae stirred awake.

    [12:44] * Ayaka would momentarily turn her attention as well to Kajika and nightshade, offering a soft chuff as they approached and turning some to include them. She wouldn’t say anything as Shukie spoke to them, nodding in turn when the beta spoke to her. “I will begin patrole soon then.. ” She offered, glancing around to see where Kova might have gotten too, but then again the fae needed rest. She was in no shape to patrole.

    [13:17] * Kajika arrived and nodded to Ayaka as she set off for a patrol and didn’t think that sounded like too bad of an idea. But he had been out and about recently and Ayaka had been here with Shukie, watching over everyone else while he went looking for anything that might be useful in these seemingly barren lands. He also heard the last bits of their conversation before she addressed him and he shook his head. “No, I haven’t gotten the chance to check on her injuries yet. How bad are they?” He noticed that Kwa and Fia both left her side and now she lay, presumably asleep. “Out of all of the injuries we received, hers were the only one I didn’t get a chance to check,” he noted. «end

    [13:31] * Nightshade had seen kajika looking at everyone else and asked her tail flopped low when shukie spoke of a trade “trade? What do you mean? Who would do such a trade like that?” In what kind of weird dream are we now? It sounds like a weird ritual… ” can’t believe this.. ” she held  herself strong…because a howl would wake up maybe unwanted attention. She dipped her head “poor alphess… why is this happening to us, what

    [13:31] * Nightshade did we do…why the hell our pack” she spoke with emotional tone…

    [13:36] * Shakira sighed quietly to herself as she came out of a sudden daze, her mind having taken a wander of it’s own as she traveled at a somewhat leisurely pace while still covering a good amount of ground. As she passed through the most southern portion of the hunting grounds, she would veer to the north to continue her search, even with the little progress she had made in finding even a clue as to what may have happened to the pack in her absence

    [13:37] * Shukie nodded to Kajika, “Stay close for when she awakens that we can better assess the damages, at least within ear shot of a howl.” Her gaze followed the path Fianna had taken into the caves but made no effort to follow to talk with her, Kwa she left on her own at her mother’s side for now. In time she’d call to all once she’d had a chance to pester Atraya on how she wanted to proceed. “The next few days, I have a feeling, will be critcal for survival.” It was at Nightshade’s burst of questions, questions may had and were likely pondering themselves, “The why’s of it, is beyond me tho it seems from things shared by Morrigan and Myrkeer all of wolfdom has been pawns in their paws to twist and mold where possible.” Her voice was calm and quiet as she spoke, not emotionless but not given to showing extreme swings either. “Atray gave her sight in trade for the pack, assuming from what I understand to be the place of The Morrigan, who is in fact or was, Atraya’s sister our alpha thought had perished long ago.” It was not easy to explain. And truth be told she was still trying to understand it all herself.

    [13:39] <Shukie> :: Shakira would find that spring and early summer was starting to turn once scortched and burnt areas green with the tender first shoots of fauna breaking free of their ashen blanket. Depending on the fae’s route, she would perhaps come near to the Founder of the WolfSpirits resting place, Kovo. Would going there shed light to the fae or would she remain in darkness of where the pack went, to leave their long held lands.::

    [13:41] * Kwa`ani had remained curled about her mother now, pretecting and caring for her as best she was able. Her stomach rumbled for want of food but she was not about to leave Atraya’s side.

    [14:00] * Kajika nodded and would keep to her side. He must have also missed Kwa still by her mother’s side but the slight movement of another form beside her own white fur that contrasted her own which only could be Kwa who decided to stick around. He continued to listen to Shukie explain what happened to Atraya but couldn’t help but let out a small whimper when he was told that she would no

    [14:00] * Kajika longer be able »»

    [14:00] <Kajika> »» to see any of them or her own surroundings. “Then I will stay by her side as ordered,” he repeated for clarification and stood up a little straighter. “Maybe not as close as one of her own daughters, but I’ll make sure that nothing else happens to her.” The distance a howl could cover was a considerable distance but he wasn’t going to be much further than an eye

    [14:00] <Kajika> could register; it was »»

    [14:00] <Kajika> »» the least he could do. “And what of the Morrigan? Has she left again with any messages? At our last encounter with her, she said that it wouldn’t be the last time that we saw her, that her goal with the broken oaths was met but still not over.” He tried to recall more of the details, but he was no more able to remember anything more than he was able to move his own ears. The more important question in his mind would also be whether or not they were at ends with her or if they were mutual partners throughout this ordeal but he wasn’t sure if that question had an answer just yet known to any of them.

    [14:01] * Shakira would pass just a few strides away from the burial site of the former Alpha of the pack she had come to know, unaware that this was where the noble she-wolf had been laid to eternal rest. A shiver passed through her ruff as she somehow sensed his was a meaningful place, a sacred place. She had heard many stories of the great Alpha who had once led this pack, even once a story of how this land was not the packs first territory. A new shiver passed through her now, one of fear and uncertainty. Had this been what happened to the pack? Had the current Alpha’s led the pack away to a new home, leaving her and possibly others like herself behind unknowingly? The thought of there possibly being others left like herself sparked her to quicken her pace. Surely she couldn’t have been the only one still here, could she?

    [14:01] <Shukie> ::Kilmaten would waken, maybe, to find himself alone tho once he looked around he’d easily see several wovles nearby. Realization taking hold of his situation::

    14:06] * Kilmaten decided to sleep on the idea because he was emotionally exhausted. He stretched himself out as he woke and let out a little yawn. He slowly pushed himself upright and noticed Shukie diccapeared. Kilmaten quickly gazed the area and found a few wolves scattered about and wanted to find Shukie.

    [14:12] * Nightshade listened also to what Shukie explained and lowered her head ” If there’s anything I could do to help, I’ll lend my paws with pleasure, I’m sorry that I couldn’t help… physical I’m ok.. mentally I would take time to give it a place..” nosed Shukie ” how are you?” While she looked around she wondered where Calder and indeed Morrigan would be ” did the other left? Could remember that we had some new around us”

    15:06] * skydancer lifts her head ears swiveling alert for trouble even she looks around trying to spot if kilmaten is still near the place she fell asleep.

    [15:09] * Shukie nodded ot Nightshade glad of the offer. “We’ll be needing everyone’s help to care for the injured and weak. A blessing perhaps that you were not here for a part of the battle to help care for others as needed.” Nodding to the fae who now seemed on the sleepy side.

    [15:11] * Nightshade layed her frame next to Shukie if she would allow it, and rested her head on her front legs.

    [15:13] * Nightshade ( Quit (Quit: )

    [15:13] * Kajika noticed the arrival of Kilmaten and turns to let out a friendly chuff to the young pup. Just as he saw the white fur, he was reminded of his father somehow and wanted to know how he was doing. As Nightshade laid down next to Shukie, he would nose her gently as the group circle became a rotating door of conversations it seemed as more came to interact as others departed.

    [15:14] * Kilmaten wouldnt be too far from where he spotted Shukie. He grinned at his findings and started to hop over to the small group of wolves, a slight grin on his face.

    [15:17] * Shukie leaned over and nosed the fae gently, “rest well for when all are called upon to our next endeavor” her tones quiet. Again she looked around for the pup and to see if other’s stirred yet. It’d been a rough few days for all. They’d not be going anywhere until Atraya was ready to depart and if need be they’d hunt in rounds and bring food back to the masses here. Spotting Kilmaten heading her way she issued a soft greeting call to the youth while looking to Kajika. “You are well, I trust?” The group was nearer the ruins west of the bear’s grave yard, which now was being slowly devoured by the hungry pack as the night and day passed.

    [15:22] * Kwa`ani winched when she realized she’d dozed off during her self appointed pretoctor assignment. It was hard to sleep for the roaming of the pack but moreso her behavior toward her sister. Slowly her head lifted from her paws. Shifting slightly she moved so that she could lightly rest her head over her mother’s shoulders.

    15:26] * skydancer spotting first the rest then the pups somewhat clumsily approach and sits up quickly, or atleast tries to. instead a slight muffled grunt emerges from her throat as her muscles complain about such action. trying again bit more slowly she then chuffs a friendly greeting to the pup and then forces herself up and head to the small gathering a slow limping padfall at a time

    15:33] * Kilmaten eventually made it over to the wolfies and screetched to a hault. “Hellooo” he said and took a seat, tail swaying behind him. He looked up to shukie. “I think your idea was the best one.” He said as he looked around again to all the wolfies.

    [15:38] * Shukie flashed a smile at the pup, “Well.. helloooos to you toooooos!” leaning over to give the pup a gentle lick. “You do huh?” responding to his answer to the dilemma of the past day. “We can work on that shortly if you like, little one!” Lifting a paw she gently groomed a bit of debris from his fur before setting it back upon the ground catching sight of the fae approaching, easily noting the difficult movements, a quiet chuft to skydancer. Her gaze strayed to atraya and kwa and hoped the siblings worked things out sooner than later.

    [15:47] * Kajika nodded his head in response to Shukie’s question of his well being and huffed a light breath out. “I wasn’t able to get more than a tuft of fur off of that behemoth, but he was not able to do more to me either.” That part made him feel a little bit better as he realized his importance more than ever at keeping everyone as healthy as he could. He found it easier to smile as Kilmaten made his way over and just sat down amongst them. He also noticed Sky walking over and dipped his head slightly to her in greeting. Noticing a bit more of a limp from her than usual, he decided to ask with his head slightly tilted and leaned forward but pulled back a few milliseconds later. “Is your paw alright, Sky? Or is it giving you more problems after the fight?”

    15:56] * Kilmaten smiled at the news. “Ok!” After bouncing around for a second he would lie down at the paws of Shukie and wait until it was time. He wanted this to be awesome because his dad said he thought the ruins are cool, and they are.

    [16:08] * skydancer movement easing a little as her muscles loosen up a bit just when she reaches the others. “mostly just stiff muscles.” kajika she replies taking note of the pups antics which causes her banner to make little wag “hello everyone” she greets the entire group before shifting her attention to the pup. “and how are today little one” she asks in a gentle tone.

    [16:17] * Shukie didn’t for a minute believe that was just muscles on skydancer’s limp. “Take it easy on that leg sky.” her tones quiet. “We all need to heal quickly as possible.” Her gaze shifted back to Kajika with a dip of her head, “Everyone did just as they needed to do that Myrkeer was defeated.” If was tough not to become ‘infected’ by the pup’s bouncing and antics. “WE’ll go in a few moments, Kilmaten. Maybe we can convince Kajika to help as well to move your father to the top of the ruins and then we can cover him in stones to keep varmits away.” With skydancer’s paw acting up, it would agrivate the injury and muscles too much for the burial. “While we’re preparing Nova if you could keep watch over the bear’s remains and keep any birds and the like from feasting, that would be greatly appreciated. Maybe even take some over to Kwa`ani for her and her mother?” She knew Kwa would not leave unless forced too from her mother’s side.

    [16:36] * Kajika ‘s ears perked at the mention of Kilmaten’s father and his whereabouts. “I’ll definitely help move him.” His tone was a little saddened since he wished that he could have been there for the wolf in his last moments. There wouldn’t have been much that he could do, but at least make sure that the journey to whatever came next was started off on the right paw. “That would a great place to put him, overlooking this structure that lasted through the ages.” His attention looked to the direction of the ruins that was just mentioned and thought it a great final resting place for one who fought as bravely as if he were one of their own. Where is he now?” His attention went from Kilmaten to Shukie but it would be whoever said it first. He might otherwise guess that he hadn’t moved much since he last saw him but just in case he wanted to be sure. «end

    [16:55] * Shukie dipped her head to Kajika tho her eyes were upon the son, Kilmaten. “He is upon the slope yonder where he last laid when you tended him, Kajika.” her tones quiet and respectful. Rising quietly she stretched a bit leaning down over her fronts then arching forward that her rump sunk as her chest puffed out until at last standing fully. “Shall we?” As they began to walk, “I’ll tell you more of your father as time passes, for now, know he was a part of the WolfSpirits family and his brave actions and selfless giving of his life for you and all of us shows his heart and spirit is that of a WolfSpirit.” As her voice faded the group would find themselves over at Nova’s side, the snow still a crimson surrounding him tho fading as things melted. “Nothing has disturbed him that I can see.” She feared the ultra cold of the area would have frozen his fur to the icy snow beneath him. Turning to Kajika, “If we move in tandum and spread his weight upon our back I think can carry him easier than dragging over the ground?” To Kilmaten she gave him the honor of leading them to the top of the ruins. “Take it slow and lead us, Kilmaten.” rubbing her maw over the crown of his head. It had seemed skydancer had drifted off to sleep possibly.

    [16:59] * Kilmaten hopped up and followed Shukie, close to her side, over to his dad. He carefully listened at the short story of his dad and nodded his head. They arrived and he watched as they got his dad ready to bring him to the ruins. His quickly nodded his head as stepped in front of them. “Okaay!” He said and waited for them to be ready.

    17:23] * Kajika looked at his still body and worked out the details of how they would move him. “It is worth a try and I think it will work.” he said wish a curt nod. He studied his body one last time in an effort to familiarize himself with the wounds inflicted so that anything else in the future he would have something to compare it to. There wasn’t much that was done but if he had herbs

    [17:23] * Kajika or moss or »»

    [17:23] <Kajika> »» something, he might have been able to stop the bleeding at the very least. He looked up and gave another short nod as he lowered his head to grasp the scruff of Nova and gently picked him up high enough for Shukie to squeeze underneath. He wasn’t able to lift him very high, but it should be enough room for her to shoulder his weight until he could do the same and help her carry him.

    [17:32] * Shukie saw what Kajika was doing and quickly dipped low, digging a bit of the snow out of the way to make it easier to burrow under. It didn’t take much to do so with Nova being as lean as he was for the travel he and Kilmaten had been doing. WIth a soft grunt or two, maybe three she did what she could to shift his weight to her shoulders until Kajika was able to worm under that they would both lift at once. The wolfie pallbearer team would soon be ready to move forth, the first few steps would be awkward until they both managed to get into step, the steady paw treads heard for the crunching of the crystalized snow. To Kilmaten, “When you’re ready, we are!” doing what she could to have an uplifted tone. She didn’t howl but she did start to murr murr as if in song for Nova, a humming if you will to add more of a remembrance for his son.

    [18:03] * skydancer carries novas banner.

    [18:06] * Kilmaten` watched the pair hoist his father onto theor backs to bring him to his final resting place. “Then lets go!” He said as he started to walk a little faster than his walkong pace as he tpok smaller steps, turning his head to make sure they were okay with the pace he set. He didnt wanna do anything wrong.

    [18:10] * Shukie would grumble, audiably when skydancer ignored the instructions she’d given the fae. “There is little you can do to help with the carrying, Please see to getting some of the bear to Kwa and Atraya while we managed this.” Her tones were sharp and pointed but not so loud that Kilmaten would hear. “The remains needs to be looked after.” Her gaze as sharp as her tones. She was not in the habit of having her instructions totally disregarded. As the pup set the pace, it was one that was easily maintained. Echoing Kilmaten`, “lets go!” and the murr’g and humming commenced

    [18:16] * Kajika snaked himself under Nova’s body alongside Shukie, his shoulders readjusting the weight until he felt like he was able to move with it. He was a bit cold but that was just the outer layer of fur that was no longer warmed by any movement of its own. The first few steps he took were cautious ones as he went at a slow walk at first to stay in sync but when he felt more comfortable with it, he was able to take normal steps to keep up with Shukie. The tone she hummed was calming to him and he focused on that to keep a steady rhythm with the crunching of the snow underpaw. He almost wanted to join in but he wasn’t used to humming as he was familiar with making other sounds so he just carried his head high as he looked up ahead at the ruins as a guide. He did however find it easier to simply follow the sounds of Kilmaten’s pawsteps ahead of them so that he didn’t have to crane his neck underneath Nova’s body.

    [18:26] * Kilmaten` listened to the humming as they walked their way to the ruins that lay a bit ahead of him. Every now and then he would peek behind him to see how they were doing.

    [18:33] * skydancer drps the banner and stopd while her wimpering muscles are relieved about it.she is bothered ,so ‘you’ was the word she hadn’t heard properly. looking after the procession for a few moments her ears angled to the sides before turning and heading back to the bear and sits studying it. not at all sure if something that old can be save to eat

    [18:42] * Shukie was relieved the fae listened this time and gave her full attention to the path ahead with occassional glances to Kajika’s front paws to keep her strides as close to his as she could to avoid jostling Nova more than necessary. It would not take all that long to make it to the base of the ruins. She hadn’t quite worked out how to ascend with the body. As they were presently, he’s slip right of their backs. She signaled to Kajika to lower him down at teh base of the first steps. Once he was saftly to the ground.. “What ideas do you have to safely get him to the top?” She also posed the question to Kilmaten`. “Perhaps, Kilmaten`, you can go to the top and find the easiest way up?” thinking a pointed task good for the lad.

    [19:27] * Kajika started brainstorming methods of how they could get Nova to the tops of the ruins. It would be an interesting task and would thusly require an interesting solution. He looked down at Nova and then at the ruins. He didn’t want to jostle the body any more than necessary, But the more he thought about it, the harder he thought it would be to move him to the top without shaking him

    [19:27] * Kajika too much or »»

    [19:27] <Kajika> »» taking the rest of the evening to complete. He thought of the hallways and strange spiraling areas that led up to the top, but the view was amazing from there and where they wanted Nova to be. As Kilmaten would start to explore the ruins, his mind wandered to the various ways that he had seen something heavy carried. Both Shukie and he was in good health currently so that was one part of theequation that he didn’t have to worry about. Moments seemed to pass by and his features were drawn out that the gears were turning in his head. “What if we draped him over the side of one of our bodies so that he is perpendicular? The hallways are definitely wide enough for it but it is only the winding flat surfaces that I am the most worried about spacing. And maybe paw placement. It wouldn’t be much wider than they are, but it wouldn’t leave much room.” He said out loud finally. “And the other can trail behind and step in if they need to switch.”

    [19:37] * Shukie investigated the inside and outside. Hmm, it is narrow she thought. She didn’t see much around that could help them.. no blocks n tackles in this spiral. “I’ll be back shortly, i want to check the other, shorter ones.” As she started to turn around she stopped suddenly… yipping to Kajika to test his memory.. “In the caves, there lots of metal sticks and a couple round-ish, flat things….” looking to the male… “If we can free one of those, we could maybe load Nova on it and we push it up the spiral?” Otherwise, it would likely be to drag him up the stepping stones to the top.

    [19:52] * Shukie paused looking to Kilmaten` not wanting him in the caves, just because. ” Kilmaten`, While we finding something to hopefully get your father to the top without too much problem, you can check out the top and figure out just where you’d like to have him placed or run down to where skydancer is near the bear and snag a piece of the bear’s fur or a claw as a token to place with him as a token, or any other item you might want with him.” her tones were soft and gentle.

    [20:01] * Kajika almost jumped at the sudden yip and his ears and head lifted up while he thought about it. He had completely forgotten about the large spike things that they figured out were part of the contraption holding Atraya hostage. “That is doable. And you only want one? One would definitely be helpful but would two shorten the time that it would take to move Nova?” He asked as he figured out the best way back into the caves. Did he want to take the slide or did he want to cross the dangerous bridge? Either way he figured, he would have to cross the bridge to bring it back because he wouldn’t be able to carry it back up the slope.

    [20:22] * Kilmaten` was looking around the entrance for possile routs. The caves were easily wide enough for them. He was looking up when Shukie told him to do the same thing “Ok, ill make sure we can get to the top then.” He declared as he slowly started to go up the spiral walkway. He hoped they could figure out a decent way to get him up, he don wanna pull him up.

    [20:27] * Shukie gently nuzzled Kilmaten`, “You are being very brave, young one. I’m proud of you.” she would nose the pup before heading off to assist Kajika as needed. “I’ll send someone to keep watch from this side as well while you investigate.” She wasn’t sure this was just bravado or not but was glad to see him doing as well as he was. Perhaps it was just for being so new or who knew for sure but the pup. What other evil and destruction had he perhaps seen she wondered inwardly as they turned to head toward the cavern. As an after thought she realized it might lead her to Fianna who she’d not yet seen emerge since the tift with Kwa earlier in the day.

    [20:49] * Kajika decided that going back down to the caves might as well be fun. He stood there for a moment before Kilmaten would go to the ruins before he walked around them to where they had taken that fateful leap at Calder’s directive. That seemed like so long ago now. The paw prints leading up to the cliff side were a little faint but he was very familiar with where it was. He cast a glance at Shukie to see if she was ready to take the jump and after everything else, this seemed like a relatively fun part of their adventures here in this still strange land. “Would you like to go first?” He asked while he looked down at it.

    [20:54] * Shukie had moved beside Kajika to where they both stood at the precipess. WIth a shake of her head to which would be mistaken for a quick `no` she backed up several paces the lept out and over the edge with a yipppeeeeee!! resounding in the night air. It would not be long until full darkness overtook the hillsides above. Out into the air her body seemed to float at first then plundged into the darkness below to which a but of a thud could be heard as her paws landed, sliding the rest of the way to the bottom where she would await Kajika.

    20:58] * Kilmaten` made it to the top, finding the path for the most part in tact. He peered over the edge looking outside and saw a pretty good view, sun soon to set behind the mountains. He figured the pair below had gone somewhere so he decided to get cozy for a bit.

    [21:08] * Kajika watched her shake her head and then look down as he prepared himself to jump but then as he looked down again, he heard heavy pawsteps of her running and looked back just in time to see her jump over the edge just as she had before. Knowing what was at the bottom made it easier to jump, but he still wanted to slide down the entire way and scooted his paws to the edge of the snowy Earth and let his weight carry him the rest of the way forward. This time however, he didn’t splay his paws out to slow his descent and the smile started to grow across his features and just as soon as it had started, he was reaching the bottom again, landing shortly after Shukie had with a small spray of snow with him.

    21:26] * Shukie glanced over her shoulder in time to see Kajika taking the slide much as Manny, Sid and Diego had just before the ice bowl cracked open. ONce they were both at the bottom, her tail swayed briefly before she began to lead the way towards the main chamber wherein lay the weaponry of the ancient two leggers. Hopefully they’d find something there which would be of use. “I hope we can find something useful!” Her gazes was often beyond their location as she was also scenting for Fianna not having seen the fae come out. “How’re you holding up with all that has gone on?” she inquired of Kajika.

    [21:49] * Kajika nodded as he looked around the cave for any possible moss that might grow on the walls but found most of them to be dry and therefore void of any plant life. The pounding that they first heard when entering seemed to be no more as if it were linked to the hold that they Mykeer had on this place. When Shukie asked how he had been, it didn’t take him long to respond and he answered openly since he had nothing to hide about it. “Initially I was a bit bummed about all that happened recently with our injuries, Atraya’s eyesight and then losing Nova after everything else, but then I realized that things like this just… happen. I’m not new to injuries we receive, and I’ve been around to see the loss of a member of another member of the group losing their life, and while it was rare, I think I may have heard of a story of a wolf losing their eyesight so I know it is something that we can live with and I’m not worried about it, but just the timing of it all.” His nose twitched as he finished saying this and it seemed like a while for it all to be put out there, but just saying it helped and he looked up when he thought he heard a sound in these caves in his general demeanor changed to his usual head held respectfully high and his tail just as much so. “But I know that I’ll be here to help with anything else that rises and I realized this when I was talking with Nightshade about it.” He even thought about the positive side of his arrival in the fight and possibly the timing working in his favor. “And even though I didn’t do much in the fight, it seemed like after I joined in, our numbers were just too much for the Mykeer to focus on just one of us and we were starting to get more and more attacks in. And what about you, Shukie? As her second, it seems like a lot more of a burden might fall to you if you are now Atraya’s eyes.” He knew that all of them would in reality be her eyes and ears, but Shukie being the Beta would hold the heaviest weight in manners regarding the pack’s safety.

    22:03] * Shukie listened carefully to the male’s responses, quietly nodding though when his demeanor changed she focused both near and far inquiring quietly, “what did you see or hear?” She was not new to assuming the collar of acting alpha having done so often in the past when one or both had disappeared for long stretches of time, even before she was delta and as beta. “It is a mantle I have assumed often, tho this shall be very different.” she whispered, still listening for anything making noise. “Alpha is not a position I desire tho as needed I will do what is needed for the betterment and safety of the pack.” As he spoke of his timing to the fight she fully agreed, “Aye, all were in their right places at the right times for his defeat and even those not there was thus that more to help care for the injured.” As they spoke their path would have them to the pool where the pointy things were. “Lets see what we can find and get outa here. It still gives me the creps though I did place Caitlyn’s body within the cave with the deer, where in it was beautiful in this area of gray, black and white.”

    [22:08] * Shakira had taken time to track through the forest and dense undergrowth leading north towards the Hidden Falls. It was at the falls where she planned to turn in for the night, it had been a long day of traveling and searching, yet still she came up empty pawed. She passed quietly along her path, now setting herself in a straight shot towards the falls as she had become somewhat discouraged. “There must be others left here, I couldn’t have been the only one left behind.” She muttered to herself, surprised by how gravely her voice had become in it’s lack of use. Pausing briefly to shake out her coat and stretch out any soreness that may have set in during her trek, she took a moment to also acknowledge the beauty of her surroundings, remembering the many times she had taken this solitary trail.
    [22:13] <Shukie> ::The sounds of the rushing waters of the falls as the water flowed over the cliff side would perhaps be soothing to the fae. the moon would shine overhead creating a beauty in the spray of the falls.. a moonlit rainbow that few saw. Any howls sung would echo locally but not reach the whereabouts of the pack and any signs of their passing would long since have been overgrown with summer foliage. With the right perspective, she would see the rebirth of the territory that all the others would be missing.::

    [22:20] * Kajika turned his head back to Shukie, a look of dismissal on his muzzle already. “Maybe it was one of the deer down here then? Spooked by either them or something I thought I heard. But this place gives me the chills as well. Closed spaces in general I’m fine with, but I would much rather prefer the open spaces and a view of stars over anything else.” At the mention of Caitlyn, ; he tilted his head slightly while also looking at one of the long spike instruments still stuck in the ground. He had loosened one of them accidentally and the rest must have been tampered with when they realized their importance here. “Who is Caitlyn?” He asked. He felt like he should have known but the name was completely eluding him at the moment. If she was buried here then it must have been someone that they knew and were familiar with at least; the whole ritual being a final farewell of someone who is known and has a shared history with one or more of those present.
    [22:30] * skydancer lies near where they finished of mykeer her head between her paws and not at all sure if she wants to so much as touch it. letting out a slow breath she once again lifts her head looking around for signs of trouble then rolls slightly onto her right flank as she reaches for her midriff and set to cleaning out the cuts she received there pausing often rest her soar muscles having gone tail over rump from both blow and wonders if she might have hit rocks or clumps of ice along the way.
    [22:30] * Shukie nodded to Kajika’s suggestion of a deer. It was possible some had returned after being driven out. “Aye, the quicker we search and hopefully find something useful, the quicker we can depart.” She’d spent far Too much time in all the caves. “We used ice caves for shelter during the dead of winter up north along the coast for it was the only way to escape the hard freeze where even your breath froze before you exhaled. At his questioning of who Caitlyn was she realized he’d perhaps missed some of the explanations, if not all, of why they had been brought/summoned here. “Caitlyn, she is, well was.. Atraya’s sister who took on the path of The Morrigan in protection of the pack when they were young. Atraya thought her dead all this time and that was the first I knew of her having a sister.” It was as she was relaying the bits about Caitlyn that she thought she saw a flash in the distance. SHe stopped suddenly lest she lose site of it. “There… over there…” she intoned with her muzzle and a dip of her head, “there.. I saw a flash. It wasn’t narrow like the spikey things but wider.” She soon moved in that direction not looking to Kajika. the path would take her into the murky waters. Stubbing a paw on something submerged she had to stop, pawing tentatively at what was beneath. As she put more pressure on it, it wobbled and moved creating ripples in the surface. As it bounced at one end, the edge breeched the surface almost smacking her in the jaw causing her to jump back… the disc toppling below the surface again.

    [22:35] * Shakira sucked in a sharp breath as the full splendor of the falls came into view as she entered the small clearing in the trees. How long had it been since she had seen a waterfall? Months, possibly even a year or more. This waterfall had given her the peace she had yearned for when she first arrived in this territory. A sob Rose and caught in her chest as the emotions of her past threatened to surge to the surface, though she quickly forced them away. No use crying over what had been. As her eyes were held mesmerized by the spinning, sparkling water droplets as they fell to the small pool below, her heart swelled with pride for this breathtaking territory she called home.

    [22:51] * Kajika didn’t know how to respond to that news at first. He was definitely surprised and not sure what to make of it. It was enough for him to halt in his inspection of one of them, judging the size of it and how one might carry it back to where it was needed. There would be too many questions if he started asking even one and now wasn’t the time to sit around and discuss the matter but it did place a new perspective on the Morrigan. It wasn’t until she changed the subject to something that she saw that he was fully there again. His ears perked and angled forward to blink at it to see if he saw movement. When Shukie charged at it, he would slowly follow suit and stopped just at the edge of the water and circled its edge to get a better view of what she was doing. When he saw the shape rise above the water, he took his first few steps into the water and tilted his head slightly. Questions of what he just saw filled his head, replacing the ones about the origins of the Morrigan and he leapt beside her to offer to help. “It looks like you got something, would you like help in bringing it up?”

    [23:04] * Shukie placed a tentative paw upon the narrow piece. Again it rose at the other end, not unlike a slender tree would be but metal similar to the swords but thinner. It was slightly wider than herself was across, and about half her length or so it appeared in the murky waters. “I dunno what this is but maybe?” Moving around to the far side she pushed at it again from where she guessed the middle might be. At Kajika’s offer of help she nodded quickly, “Yes, please!” They would find it easy to maneuver once free of the silt that held it within its grasp. Perhaps it was a piece of a cart or buggy as the hoomans called them, things that the tall, lanky hoofed animals with sleek necks and long neck fur and tails yet very short fur on the rest of their bodies, a long nose not unlike a moose or caribou. Once it was pulled closer to shore there would be gaps between the pieces that ran the length, matching widths. Perhaps it was the oil on the wood that it was persevered and not rotted, who knew, certainly not her. It was not all that heavy once freed of the water. “Lets see if this will work?” She laid down upon the contraption to see how her own frame might fit. It was a tad short but if just the legs stretched just off the end, perhaps? she wondered.

    [23:18] * Kajika paced around the strange piece of material that reflected light even if it weren’t for the water droplets all along its surface still. “It looks a bit strange, but if we can bring this back with us, then it just might work!” he exclaimed hopefully. “It might be crazy enough that it just might work.” he repeated just a little bit quieter. He never thought he would end using anything like this to move anyone anywhere, but they were presented with a challenge that he wasn’t going to just think inside the box for a solution. “We might be able to get this back without taking too long, or would you rather wait until morning?” he proposed confidently. “I still have enough energy that I can take it back up to the ruins and check on Kilmaten.”In reality however, he just didn’t want to spend the night down here and saw a way to knock out two birds with one stone.
    [23:27] * Shukie tilted her head looking over the odd piece see that a part had broken off which left two openings at one end creating a cross beam of sorts. She was in agreement to get it out of there tonight not wanting to be underground any longer than she had to be. “I prefer topside to where I can check on the others and the weee one. She also intended to roll in the snow to get the stentch of the murkey water from her fur. “If we each take a side it might slide and would be a reasonable test to see if it’d work.” with a final look around then down at the contraption she hefted one side to begin hauling it out when Kajika was ready. “I hope to have kilmaten ready at dawn when the first light of day flows over the ruins that he’ll see what his father who shall rest here will see each day.” She was such a silly, sentimental fae at times tho it was something few would ever see.

    [23:43] * Kajika nodded and smiled at the thought. It would be the perfect way to place him in his final resting place and for his son to find closure. He took up his end and started to walk sideways with it before walking normally and just turned his head sideways. He had to open and snap his jaws quickly to readjust to the size of it which was a lot bigger than the small things he was used to carrying in his jaws but it was no more heavier than anything else he had carried, especially since the weight was split. As they made their way out of the tunnels, he felt more relieved at what they were doing and some part of him smiled as he had seen Shukie and everyone else’s interactions with the pup were all positive and the relief was shared knowing that Kilmaten would find a home here as he was told that his father once had.

    [23:48] * Shukie shared the burden of the ‘thing’ and helped to get it to the base of the hill where the ruins were that they could easily move it there at first light. “I dunno about you but I am suddenly finding i need to rest.” The adreneline of being in the caves had sapped what remained of her strength to do more on this day. She had since dropped her side of it which of course, would force Kajika to lower his as well. Leaning over she gently nuzzled in appreciation for his company and help with everything. “I’m gonna roll around a bit and scrape off this muck, then take a bit of a ‘cat’ nap.

    [23:58] * Shukie dipped her head in agreement, “And you! Thank you again for all you do and have done.” With that she rolled around several times until the bulk of the muck was gone, a trail in the snow to mix with some of the crimson that now faded some with the passing of the day.


    #Battalia | 7/11/2019

    * Fianna feeds fen Nova’s soul
    <`Fenrir> `Fenrir ruffles Fianna’s fur before devouring the offered soul. Good luck on your next hunt.
    <Shukie> she wants luck on this one first tho 🙂
    <skydancer> oh
    <Nova> McScuse me?
    <Atraya> LOL

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