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Rakashua

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  1. Kai held in a sigh, he didn't want to make Noe aware of his own disappointment, anger, sadness at the decision that had been reached. She didn't need another voice agreeing with her, echoing her own woes lest the two of them get bogged down in nothing else and the entire day be ruined. He only hope it wasn't already so. Doubtful. Noe was being open and honest with him as he had just been with her, and it hurt him to know how she felt and that there was nothing he could do about it. And he knew that his own honesty had dampened her own spirits. Still, honesty was so important, especially now. To be unified through hardship depended on their ability to share their souls with one another. To share their burdens and work through them together. Kai gripped Noe firmly around the shoulders as she ducked under his arm. He smiled despite the situation. She claimed ownership over his body as his wife, but particularly she claimed ownership of his arm. If they were walking together, it was on her shoulders, around her, however she wanted it was hers. It had been like that so long that Kai felt weird walking by himself without Noe's shorter frame tapping along beside him. He nodded to himself and made his decision. "Alright you." He unexpectedly swung Noe up into his arms with a whirl of sand and kissed her lips. He smiled as he felt her heart suddenly race both with his surprise in lifting her off her feet, and that of the assault he had just made on her face. After the passionate moment had faded Kai pulled back slightly, breaking the kiss so he could speak to the lovely creature draped in his arms. "I think that's enough reality for one day." He grinned hugely, "I've recently discovered the entrance to a land not so far away where war and strife don't exist, a land filled with animals and green grass, flowers and trees. A place with a nest fit for two love birds to be lost in forever." Kai grinned as he began carrying Noe towards the nearest exit. "Interested in taking a walk with me to this magical place my love?"
  2. Welcome back LL, get some sleep! *wishes he had more characters to do fun emotes with!* oh well, Kai will have to make up for it by being super duper characteristimacated by multiplying all his personality traits to their illogical extremes! *whack* awwww.... come on Aketsu... it would be fun. You remember how Kai was back at the beginning of this whole RP? Oh right... You two didn't get along back then
  3. Aketsu had to be Kai's accountability partner lol, poor guy can't keep a secret to save his life, how funny *wonders what Aketsu thinks about Kai*
  4. 'How are you' The question was something that Noe asked him often but the question itself was misleading, at least in his mind. It had taken Now a few months worth of explaining and training to help Kai finally realize that she wasn't asking 'how are you?' like someone passing by on the street might nonchalantly ask it. She didn't want him to say "I'm fine," or, "doing well," or "ah, I'm alright." No, the question meant something completely different to her than it had meant to him, at least in the beginning of their marriage. There were many ways that the two of them had discovered in which they seemed to speak different languages. It had been a strain on their relationship at times, but ultimately the time that each one took to learn from and understand the other and communicate with them openly proved to be a solid foundation that allowed the rest of the relationship to flourish. So Kai immediately corrected his initial reaction and translated Noe's question into "what has your day been like and how do you feel about it emotionally?" She wasn't interested in a bullet point list of everything that happened, she wanted to know how he was feeling. That was how it should be, even he knew that. Still, it wasn't easy for him to discern how he was feeling and answering took a moment. "Well, I went to the meeting, after I got up and ate and did... stuff..." Kai allowed Noe to slip out of the embrace and settled for holding her other hand in his good hand. "I think I'm a little sad that things don't seem to be going as we had hoped, even after all this time." Kai paused, looking down at the ground for a moment and shifting his feet before he met Noe's gaze once more. "Angry," he admitted, "I try not to be. But I think about you, working so hard in so many ways to help Isa win over the nobles, and all the hardship they put you both through... and it makes me angry at them. I can't help it." He grinned sheepishly, "I feel angry with anyone who makes your life more difficult than I think it should be. Which is not at all, by the way," he added with a smile. Kai bit his lip, it was a tell he had when he was hiding something. He was absolutely terrible at keeping secrets, especially from Noe, even if they were in order to surprise her. It just wasn't in his nature to be anything but open with those he was close to. So he'd finally broken down a month ago and told Aketsu all about the home he was working on, and Aketsu had actually come out to see it and made some good suggestions. Aketsu was also Kai's accountability partner that Kai wouldn't give in to his desire to tell Noe about things until today, well... until this evening at least. Still, being so close to that time... his promise to Aketsu and to himself, was being put to the test. "How are you doing love?" He asked, trying to give her the burden of replying before he lost it and told her everything. The plan was to take her on a walk through the woods, before they had a chance to need to go to the small flat that currently served as their home. "We could take a walk later if it would ease your mind, give us a chance to talk, just the two of us?" Kai couldn't keep the mischievous smile off of his face, but he hoped she would interpret it simply as his desire to get her alone and away from everyone after a day in which both of them had been around others and away from one another. Kai eyed Noe carefully, her reaction indicated that she hadn't bothered to stop at the flat before coming here... which was good, since he'd already moved absolutely everything out of it and taken it to their new home in the woods this morning. He figured she would have been a bit more alarmed if she'd noticed that before coming to see him.
  5. Kai nodded, instinctively taking Isa's hand in his, the one hand he had left, as he gladly lead her back in the direction of Aketsu and Noe. It would do them both good to be around their significant others. That and regardless of the sadness of his earlier statements, Kai couldn't keep his surprise for Noe completely out of his mind. Even as they began walking back, he caught himself wondering if he'd remembered to clear the sand off the walk way before he left last night. Still his mind was not absent enough to forget a reply. "That sounds like an excellent idea." He gave Isa's hand a little squeeze, "you know that you have Noe's and my full support, whatever your final decision." They walked for a short distance before they were forced to part ways as Kai continued on to Isa's room and Isa move a bit further down the hall to Aketsu's. "I'll give Noe my best for you, and Isa?" Kai paused for a moment with a small smile, "promise to get some sleep mmm?" He hadn't wanted to say anything earlier, but she looked as tired as she probably felt, at least to him. And he knew she was stubborn enough to ignore her body's need of sleep until a time that was more "convenient" such a time that he was convinced would be too late in coming. Bowing once in respect, Kai turned in to Isa's room hurried inside. Noe was the first thing that came to his sight and he rushed up to her, embracing her with both arms. The embrace had two effects, first it was to show her how much he'd missed her and loved her, and second it put him in close contact with her body and allowed him to feel her stress levels quite literally. That would tell him if now was a good time to be excited and happy or supportive and calm. He hoped for the former but expected the latter. Either way, he was confident in his plan to change her mood before the end of the day. "Welcome back love, I missed you!" Kai exclaimed as he buried his head in her neck, breathing in her familiar scent and giving her a quick kiss to prove his earlier statement. Noe hadn't been gone for days, in fact she hadn't been gone for even one full day, but that didn't make Kai's statement any less true. If he had his way he would spend every waking moment with her, politics and national policy be anathema.
  6. Kai smiled as he perceived Isa's heart rate slow a bit and she even smiled, still her mood quickly returned to as it had been. It seemed everyone was on edge and seeing Isa like this drove one thought into Kai's mind 'fix it'. It was the natural response, like a deep seated need in his soul, a need to fix it, to make everything better again. Every time Noe brought her troubles to him, indeed every time he saw any of his friends in need, he was drove to find a solution and implement it. But in his first few months of marriage he'd quickly found that fixing the problem, being all logical and providing possible solutions, was the last thing Noe wanted from him. She wasn't incapable of thinking for herself. It wasn't like she didn't have any ideas of her own. In fact she wasn't even asking him to share his. She wanted him to be there, to help her through the emotions of the problem so that she could move on to the logical side. It was the opposite of how he worked through things himself. Everything had to be ordered and logical, then the emotions could enter in. But as her husband, he'd worked hard to provide for her needs and break free of his own patterns. Noe told him that it was like this for most females, and he made that assumption now with Isa. "Your father doesn't listen to you, I know it's frustrating." He paused, allowing her to help him up though he did most of the work, very few people could lift him and all his sand. "You feel like everything is going back to the way it was, that no one learned anything from what happened a year ago. You don't like being ignored, especially when you know you're right." Kai paused, it was a gift of his that Noe had helped him develop, the ability to understand how others felt. Ironic because he had such a hard time himself expressing his own emotions. But right now, he could feel the underlying current beneath all the frustration in Isa's mind. "But that's not what bothers you. You don't want to think of the real reason that this hurts you so much, none of us do..." Kai paused, "Did all of our friends die, just so that things could get worse? Did they die in vain? Do their sacrifices mean nothing to those who sent them?" Kai lowered his eyes and his voice, "they were voices for peace along with ours, now silenced, dedicated to our cause to the last, a cause that is now further than ever from being made reality." Kai crossed his arms, not sure how to express even how he felt about that. He could say it well enough in words, but the emotions behind it were still a grey fuzz, far less clear than the emotions of those he knew best. "I'm sorry, I shouldn't have brought it up, I didn't mean to make things worse." Kai lifted his gaze to meet Isa's eyes, "I just don't want them to be forgotten. I don't want to forget those days, no matter how much it hurts to remember. Because if I forget, then their voices truly are silenced."
  7. Kai sat off to the side in the room as various voices were raised and opinions voiced. He'd started off as he had been told, 'pay attention to what everyone is saying, I need you to fill me in when I get back'. After the first half hour, however, he had removed himself from the table, tired of being shouted across when he was neither in the mood nor had the political position to say anything in response. It was so different from any meeting he'd ever attended back in the Monastery or even in the land of the Earth Elementarians. Isa was shouting at Aslano, Aslano's advisers were shouting at Isa, and one another, and Aslano certainly wasn't responding any differently. For the past half hour everyone had stated and restated their opinions, no one seemed even to be talking to one another. One person spoke their opinion as if it were the best thing to do, then another contradicted with a different opinion, only to have the first speaker re-contradict by stating the same opinion they had stated before... the only thing that seemed to change were the words being used... well... that and Isa's temper. Kai had mostly zoned everyone out by the time the meeting ended. No one had asked for his input and frankly he wouldn't have known how to give it. That was Noe's gift, and now that she had come to knowledge of her heritage, she had a place to speak as well. Unfortunately she wasn't around at the moment. Kai couldn't even remember where it was she said she was going. All he knew is that she'd be back sometime in the afternoon, in time for him to show her the anniversary present he'd been working on for the past three months. He sighed with relief as everyone started to leave, following them out in an apparent daze. His mind was far off in the woods in a small clearing, picking out the details of the home he had been constructing for months in secret. Every little detail ticking off in his head as he tried to remember anything he may have forgotten to do. As he entered the hallway a familiar vibration reached his bare feet. It was his shadow, not the literal darkness cast by his figure but a man, short and light on his feet. The same man who had followed him about the city wherever he went for the past six months, ever since it had become widely known that he was also a lightning elementarian. Was it the king's doing? Perhaps a member of the council? He really didn't care. Whenever he wanted to evade the man he simply vanished underground. Normally something like that wouldn't have bothered him, it made sense to a degree, he couldn't ask everyone to trust him completely. It was a show of balance to be sure. But ever since he had married Noe, another side of him had emerged, perhaps the more protective male side that he'd never really experienced before. Whatever this new side to his ego, it didn't like the idea of being followed, not where Noe was concerned. So he'd vanished underground every time he'd gone to see her, every time they were together he asked her to fly them somewhere, or taken her for a tour of the tunnel system he used. He was still debating whether or not to tell her about it, it would only concern or anger her, and in truth it wasn't a big enough bother for him to feel the need to bother her with it. He was so immersed in such thoughts that he didn't realize where he was going and accidentally bumped into Isa from the other direction... that's when he realized he'd been walking through the stone walls without thinking about it, causing him to step out into the air again right in the path of the princess. "Isa!" Kai fell back to lessen the impact as he noticed too late to keep it from occurring. "I'm so sorry, I wasn't paying attention." He gave her an apologetic smile, "If you ever need someone to blow some steam off on, you can always use me for a punching bag." He tapped his chest, covered in sand that looked so much like his normal skin that one couldn't tell the difference without close inspection. He'd learned a bit about humor and its uses, but according to Noe he hadn't quite figured out when it was appropriate and when it wasn't. He hoped now was one of those appropriate times...
  8. I'm confused as to which chatroom we are using?
  9. Alright, I've created/edited in a new picture of Kai. That's his current look (helps him fit in with Noe's new found culture being a griffin and all). Those are feathers that she's shed. The lack of scarring on his body is due to the presence of the sand, without it he would have many many visible scars (only Noe knows about most of them as she's the only one who really ever sees him without the sand). What do ya'll think? http://i173.photobucket.com/albums/w65/wri...zps4fe95aaf.jpg
  10. What do you think of Kai's new history LL? And what else can I add (IE: I need to know what Noe would have done/wanted in the last year to finish the back-story) What I have down now is the most likely course of action for Kai.
  11. lol sorry to overwhelm you LL, probably the most important thing for you to do right now is to decide between all of the potential name choices. (see thread to get what I mean) (and completely kidding fyi ) seriously though, you should see Noe's new house and let me know what you think of my proposed change to Kai's backstory (to include the last year) which I simply added to the document you have set up on the first page of the actual RP. God bless, Rak. PS: Welcome Back!
  12. I'll ask LN if she's working on one. Also just remember that the guides are "guides" not "set in stone" this is how it is. They have a couple of uses: They give you an idea of what is considered to be "appropriate" for each power level. They give you examples of somethings your character could do with his/her element. What they are not: They are not an exhaustive list of possibilities with your element. They are meant to give you some ideas and get you kick-started into coming up with the ways your character might use his/her element that makes that character unique from the generic guide. Just remember that if you do create something, you need to get it approved by LL (unless she designates someone else who can also approve things). But don't let that hold you back from being creative! Water especially is... flowing. It can take almost any shape. It is I think the only liquid that increases in size when it freezes (making ice very useful). It's all over, in the air, in the ground, and inside you! Think about the unique ways that physics/chemistry apply to your element, you can often come up with more uses than you thought possible for your element if you understand the element itself within the boundaries of how it actually works in real life. (for all you space elementarians... yeah.... none of that applies sorry)
  13. Or he could just carry around a "really dense" block of metal or something (even though that would be rather heavy) because from what I can tell your arrows are light and thin but hard, so you could make dozens of arrows out of a metal block no larger than your arm (and it would comply with the laws of physics such as they are).
  14. Ok, I'm not the expert/authority on the subject (but I am some authority on it). Silver, Blaise is on par in power level with the arch nemesis of the entire plot. IE: he could go one on one with her and probably win. Needless to say... that kinda breaks the plot. Assertion: You probably didn't quite understand the guides LN made. Also, a "Legendary" character, has to be kinda old. Since it takes roughly 5 or more years to move from one level to another (and those are years of intense training not just years spent alive). So this is kind of a message to everyone who is creating characters. Specialization means "Specialization refers to the process of becoming specialized; specialty refers to a special pursuit, occupation, or product." You can't "specialize" at many things, you specialize at 1 or maaaaybe 2 things. Also, the idea with the powers and different levels is that your characters are good at certain aspects and not good at others. The guides aren't meant to be a list of things your character can either do "perfectly" or "not at all." Your characters will be in-between those two extremes in every ability they can use or they will be in the "not at all" category in abilities they cannot use. Also the guides aren't an end all be all powers list, you can make powers up (that comply for the most part with the laws of physics and that LL approves), they're just suggestions and explanations of general things that each elemental type are capable of. Let me use Kai as an example: His ability to control earth element is limited almost entirely to sand as opposed to rock (which he has little ability with). Also he has almost no ability to manipulate sand that is wet. Furthermore the farther away from his body the sand is, the harder it is to control and the more energy and concentration it requires. If you've seen Naruto, he's no Gaara of the Desert. ( ) With his lightning element he's had virtually no training at all. Therefore his only ability is to channel it through his body from natural sources, or produce a minor discharge on contact. And his ability to channel is based on his training with earth, not lightning (because earth elementalism is all about balance and flow). Now if you throw him in with a storm elementarian like Noe who can give him unlimited lightning to work with, and then have him combine his elements into the lightning rod technique... well yes, he can obliterate quite a bit. But that's because it's a combination of smaller techniques and an entire other person working with him. The idea of teamwork is incredibly important. There has to be a reason for each character to be a member of whatever team they are a part of. Teammates are meant to balance one another out, to make up for one another's weaknesses and feed one another's strengths. All-powerful characters are also no fun to play or to interact with since they have no depth of character to them. This making sense to everyone?
  15. Noe + Kaimaru (or Kai) = Nokia Nimaru Konami Konamaru Mononoke Uramino Kai Jr. Moak Kaniro Nonoe Nonai Nami Noaki LL and I will have to talk about it mmm?
  16. Alright, I've updated Kai's history and information (pending LL's approval because it sort of kind of involves one of her characters... *cough cough marriage cough cough* from the end of the last session) We haz knew ppl? saweet! Sorry I'm tired I shouldn't be up typing but wanted to say hi and that I'll be returning. Nice to meet all you new folks. -Rak.
  17. Matthias shook his head, "I'm going to watch the people, maybe save them, if the fight is in my favor. If not, just observe how they react. I want to learn about the city as a hunting ground without going alone, if it's something I can adapt to I'd be interested in spending some time there, a large group of treasure seekers from Winterbury is effective cover to use in entering." Matthias paused and glanced at Indigo before saying more softly, "but if she wants a piece of it, then it might be a worthy hunt to undertake. Either way, those already deciding to go based on that man's story and the hope of treasure will clear the way of surprises, an effective distraction at least and a safeguard at best." Matthias knelt down and began petting Rip, his mind immediately leaping ahead to the journey and what they might encounter, what they might fight, or who. "I don't mean to endanger anyone, don't feel the need to come with me," Matthias now spoke to anyone in earshot, but specifically those he had already met, "I can move faster on my own, perhaps not as safely, but don't feel the need to go just because I intend to."
  18. Matthias frowned as a guardsman called for everyone to leave. This lead to hasty packing, quick movements, and a general atmosphere of temporary chaos with people moving this way and that, rushing up to their rooms to grab belongings or rushing out the door. Rip's eyes were darting this way and that, he didn't like all the fast movement, everyone was acting like prey, scared of something. Matthias quickly took hold of the wolf's scruff before Rip could decide to pounce on someone. Matthias grit his teeth, a knife finding its way to his free hand. He sat still, waiting as everyone rushed about, ensuring that no one came near his stuff or Rip, who would no doubt spring on the first person to bump into him regardless of Matthias' hold on his scruff. This is why I hate crowds... Matthias thought ruefully as he waited patiently. Soon the throne was almost empty, almost. There was no longer a crowd at the door, only a few people still rushed about. The nearest guard had begun staring at him with the obvious intent of getting him to leave. "Stay." Matthias pushed Rip's head down and the wolf whined, still glancing from person to person in the room, still trying to figure out which one he was supposed to be hunting and why they were rushing. Matthias slowly stood, scooting his chair back. He folded up the map he had marked on, and put the fold into his inner fur vest. Finally he glanced about once more to make sure no one was thinking of coming over to him for any reason and hid the knife as he stooped to pick up his pack. He frowned, realizing going outside meant larger open areas and decided to take a minute to grab his bow and quiver and strap them separately to his back. By now the five minutes was quite definitely up but he was ready to head out the door. "Come Rip." Rip practically leapt to his side, all keyed up and ready to get out of the indoors. "I'm sorry," Matthias apologized to the man who had told everyone to leave, "he doesn't do well with crowds, it wouldn't have been safe to tell him to leave just yet." Why explain himself? Matthias shrugged mentally, the man was a guard, and that represented authority, authority that Matthias would prefer to stay on the good side of. Lastly Matthias pulled his wolf-fur cape over his back and fastened it at his collarbone, making sure the wolf-head was snug so the wind wouldn't blow it off. Then he stepped outside, Rip in tow. The wind and temperature change hit him like a wall of bricks, but it was a welcome feeling. The throne had been hot and stuffy, this was cold, but the air was clear and fresh, even if it did taste of ash, but that was always true. Outside he quickly located Rune and stood by him, keeping Rip on the side of his body that there were no people at the moment. Jasmine was there too and Matthias scanned the people for Indigo, hoping she also managed to get out without incident. Jasmine seemed to have just said something to Rune but Matthias had missed what it was, not that his brother's conversations were his business anyways. Either way, Rune had asked him to discuss the plan, and it wasn't very windy just here. "Based on things," Matthias hated to elaborate, "the bright falling object that made such a noise last night, landed in the city somewhere. I suggest finding someone to guide us, I can get to the city, but I've never been inside." Matthias glanced around until he found the man who had been reading the newspaper. "I suggest you talk to him brother, he could be an excellent guide," again, Matthias didn't elaborate as to why. If Rune wanted to know that badly, he would ask. Matthias simply saw the way the man carried himself, and the fact that he was obviously seasoned and familiar with the area, on top of that he wasn't a wild man, as some referred to Matthias as being. That coupled with the fact that he enjoyed reading newspapers from the older days meant there was a good chance he knew things about the city and he probably didn't want anything to do with it. Which was good, he would be a cautious and careful guide, erring on the side of caution. An excellent candidate, if Rune could convince him to join them. Matthias certainly had no intention of guiding or leading the group, unless of course they had to make a run for it, then he'd be in front... well.. following Rip that is.
  19. Matthias stood in silence, after the man had mentioned the lurker incident, and the fact that his daughter was a lurker... at least in Matthias' reckoning, there had been reason to suddenly transport this man from the realm of "I really don't care" to a much different slot in Matthias' memory under the heading of "interesting." There weren't many things that fell under that category, then again there weren't all that many things that Matthias found out of the ordinary. If there were then they would have ceased to be out of the ordinary and therefore ceased being interesting altogether. "Lurker," Matthias rolled the word around in his mouth. Even at saying it Rip grew noticeably tense. He knew what the word meant, at least on the level that any pet ever understood human speech. He knew it meant that they were be doing a lot of running, or fighting, or hiding, or all three. Matthias had trained Rip very carefully to signal him if there were lurkers nearby, they smelled different from humans. Now Rip could effectively alert him whenever one was scented. But the training had come at a price. To train him on a lurker he had to encounter one, and where there was one there were usually many. It had been near the subway system that ran in and out of the city. Matthias knew the closer he got to the city the higher the chance of lurkers, but he wasn't just waiting to be ambushed by them. He had carefully watched the area for a week until he'd picked up on where they were hiding. After that it was just a game of cat and mouse for a few days while he allowed himself and Rip to get close enough to smell them, but far enough that they could outrun them without having to fight. Matthias found a knife in his hand, he hadn't realized he'd allowed it to slip out of his brace. He idly spun it in his hand, one time they had been too close. Three of the lurkers had ambushed them just before the treeline, popping up out of the snow. Rip had warned him in time to get a head start, but the snow was deep, running in it was nearly impossible. His bow was inaccessible in his pack, but it was the only ranged weapon he had, he couldn't risk throwing the knives and losing them. He'd been forced to sick Rip on the three of them to give himself time to pull out the bow and knock an arrow. In the end Rip was cut but seemingly not bit or badly wounded and the lurkers were dead to Matthias' careful arrows. It had been the scariest moment in his life that he could remember, watching Rip, wondering if he would suddenly change into a mindless monster. But no, it that he hadn't contracted the disease from the encounter, small miracle. Both he and Matthias had been left with a distinct distaste for lurkers and Rip had been keen on detecting them ever since. Matthias wasn't sure if this was because of the training, or because Rip was actually afraid of them. He acted skitish whenever they were about, it wasn't exactly a signal that there were lurkers nearby, but then again... very little that Matthias had ever encountered had caused Rip to seem afraid. Rip's fur was bristling, expecting a fight. Matthias realized it was a combination of the word he had spoken and the fact that he had a knife out that had qued Rip up for a fight. Not wanting the wolf to suddenly be set off by anything, he quickly slid the knife back into hiding and put a hand on Rips head, pushing it down firmly until the Wolf lowered it to the floor. Still looking on edge but his fur relaxed save for the fur of his mane (the fur around the back of his neck). Matthias waited for a moment as others got up and left, leaving him with Jed, somewhat alone. Matthias moved his pack to the side of the chair his brother had occupied, just now noticing the map his brother had placed in his off-hand. Matthias sat down, prompting Rip to scoot next to the chair and his pack and sit attentively, still expecting something to happen. "Your business is none of my concern," Matthias spread out the map on the table and began to examine it. "I have only one rule for other males who travel with me. The first time Rip or I get it into our heads that you might threaten us, I let you know and give you a chance to explain. If I don't like the answer you leave and never come back. If you refuse, or if it happens again, I'll kill you and feed your corpse to the wolf." Matthias looked up from the map and stared hard at Jed, then slowly extended his hand, "but you strike me as a man of strong conviction. Welcome to the party."
  20. Matthias nodded, glad that she had accepted. Honestly as soon as he had started babbling his thoughts he was sure she would decide against it, but he didn't know another way of talking to someone besides simply saying what he was thinking. "Alright, I'll introduce you. Rip, knife." Matthias held out his hand and Rip, seeing his opportunity to leave, grabbed the knife stuck in the wood and yanked it out, dropping it into Matthias' hand. Matthias took the blade and slid it into his other wrist-guard. He then took a few moments to pick his other knives from the table and slide them back into their hidden homes within his clothing and belt. Matthias then unhooked Rip's leash and slid that into his belt as well. "Come on," He nodded to Indigo, offering her his hand but then thought better of it and turned the move into helping him balance as he spun and walked toward his brother's table. "Rune," Matthias nudged his brother in the shoulder, "this is Indigo, she's interested in coming with us." The most simple level of information, nothing more, not what she wanted, what her strengths or weaknesses were, just who she was and why she was being introduced, anything more Indigo could choose to reveal herself, he would not tread accidentally on her privacy. "Indigo, this is my kid brother, Rune, a doctor of sorts. And this is Jasmine, an incredible musician and storyteller." Matthias smiled to her with a nod, "and this is a man my brother has been treating, Jed." Matthias stood there awkwardly, not exactly sure what was supposed to happen next, usually people said hi and pretended to be happy and started to talk about something unimportant, it never made much sense to him. He glanced down, glad to find Rip at his side, sitting, staring up at him. The wolf was getting antsy, ready to move again. The break had been nice, nice to warm up completely for a day or so, rest, but it would be time to go very soon. There would be a lot of hunting to do, no more hunting just to feed himself, but others as well, that meant less taking from stealth and more going for entire groups of animals at once. Still, that was the advantage of a bow, you could shoot several times before the animals caught on, if you were good, very good. Yes, they would leave soon, with or without the group.
  21. ((Natasha's been keeping up with this one no problem, she just has to wait on pack)) Matthias smiled, "perhaps that is why I prefer his company to others, albeit he's not much for conversation. But he's warm and he's reliable." Matthias gave a half amused shrug, "now if I could find another person with at least those two qualities I might rethink my anti-social ways." Matthias glanced at a nearby window, it was hard to imagine, no, impossible to imagine the world not being a hard place to live. What would he do? If hunting was suddenly easy, if there wasn't a bitter cold all year round. Still, people would still need food, the skills of hunting would be in high demand because everyone would be expanding to cover the world as they apparently had at one point. "Aside from an act of God, I can't imagine things returning in an instant to what they supposedly were before. But if it did, well I'm sure I would still find work, if not I could at least have no trouble finding a nice place for that cabin. And somethings wouldn't have changed, I'd still be searching for someone to share it with, though I'm sure it would be easier since the threat of death would be less imminent." Matthias returned his gaze to the table, no longer staring out the opaque, ice-coated window. "Being prepared..." he thought for a long minute, "I'll be heading into the city with the group going to check out the man's story. Dangerous to be sure, even with several people. Do we go over the wall? Through it? Under it? How bad is the radiation? Where are the scavengers, where are the raiders? What mutated creatures will need killing? What amazing treasures might exist at our destination?" Matthias smiled, "there are a lot of things to think about. You wouldn't be interested in joining me would you?" Matthias indicated Rip, "I can carry your stuff to make the going easier on you, not because I don't think you can handle it, but because you hurt yourself and should be taking it easier so you heal more quickly. Anyways, Rip and I will be staying further back from the group, he'll know before I do if we're being followed or hunted." Matthias held up a hand to keep her from answering just yet, "normally I would prefer to be alone, but there's going to be a large group going either way, there's no point in trying to be stealthy, therefore your weapon, if it works, would be quite useful to have about, and of course you as well because we're going after scrap and such, which is your area of expertise, getting us there alive is mine. And I doubt it would be just you and I, my brother as well, perhaps the bard there, and the man my brother was talking to, maybe others. They may join us further out or stick with the main group, but they are the ones I would be watching out for, and you of course, if you're interested. I only ask because I figured you would be intrigued by the chance at salvage and scrap, and I'm interested in getting into the city. I've often considered staying in the city for a time, a new hunting ground with new challenges, higher risk, higher payback, and this group gives me the perfect way in." Matthias waited for her response. He didn't just ask because he thought she might be interested in the salvage, that didn't interest him at all. Instead he wanted her with him so that he could ask her about all the things that went through his head when observing others, especially groups like the one that would be heading out. Questions about human nature, simple observations, he wanted to know if she thought along the same lines as he did, or if not, how she thought differently. Much of that he had learned about her just from sitting here and speaking with her, but only so much could be thought of when sitting in an inn. The mind was much more engaged in the topics of interest when actually out in the elements where there was danger and the mind had to be quick to survive. It was then that true conversation, however short, could occur, at least the kind he was interested in having. Besides, the fleeting idea that she might want to stay in the city longer and hunt for scrap had crossed his mind, if so then their immediate goals were similar and he would offer to take care of the need for nourishment and shelter for the two of them, and safety to some extent. Maybe she was interested in getting to know him better, maybe she didn't scare easily. This thought of course was at the very back of his mind where he constantly considered such things, but such thoughts rarely impacted his actual decisions. Dreams were too fleeting to impair reality when survival was such a critical issue.
  22. things always slow down over break, especially holidays and this being finals for most. It picks up again in January.
  23. "Some people take animals as pets, treat them like family, but they never live the life they would have in their natural state. Others take them and use them for work, they treat them like tools, and use them until they aren't useful anymore." Matthias explained. He didn't take a stand on animal abuse, it wasn't abuse to use them for what they were naturally good at, but he did advocate treating them very well, it was only fair. A hunter cleaned his weapon and kept it in perfect condition as often as possible because it was a tool he cared for. Likewise a good owner took care of his hunting dog as if it was just as important as his own weapon of choice. "I took Rip from his family and his home, quite literally. I do not regret that and he was far too young to hold it against me. But I feel that I'm obligated to treat him like family and give him an approximation of what his life would have been." Matthias shrugged, "I share in his life and he shares in mine. I had to learn a lot about his personality and habits, and especially how he communicates. I didn't choose to change his language through training, but I adapted my own to suit his natural understanding. Many think I'm cruel to him at a glance because they don't understand his language, but I think he prefers it this way, I didn't want to take the wild out of him when I took him out of the wild." Matthias considered her question, "We provide for one another." He said slowly. "I let him hunt when I'm in camp, tanning hides or treating leather. He brings back small game. He never eats it, he brings it back and it has to be that way. Once per year we have a disagreement and he tries to kill me, its an instinct that most would try to beat out of a wolf. I can tell such a day is coming if I catch him eating his prey without offering them to me first or asking my permission." Matthias tilted his chin back, revealing a noticeably long scar across his throat. "He almost killed me last Spring, it's usually spring when it happens. I slipped on the ice and before I knew it he was on me. There are always signs, though, I knew it would be coming soon." Matthias was silent for a moment, trying to decide how much to share, how much would make him seem that much more odd. Still, this woman hadn't taken that view of him just yet, at least not enough to stop talking to him. "You might think it's foolish to let him keep up a habit like that. And I suppose it is in many ways. But before you think me a fool, you need to understand why I let it happen." Matthias folded his hands in his lap. "He chooses to fight me because we're both males and dominance isn't something that is forced, it's hard won, at least in a wolf pack. If I want him to be totally loyal to me beyond question and never have to watch my back when he is around, all I have to do is win that battle. His instincts are such that he will follow me as if I were his Alpha and he my pack. If I were to ever lose, and still survive, he would never be loyal to me again and I would probably never see him again." Matthias shrugged, "I've chosen to meet him on his terms. If I were to beat the habit out of him or train it out, it would stunt his instincts, it would make him less loyal than he is now, he wouldn't hunt with me as well, and our bond would be far different and less predictable. As it is I can rely on him completely to be loyal except once a year, and as long as I'm prepared it's usually not as terrible an event as you may imagine. I don't have to hurt him after all, I just have to get him in a choke hold until he's nearly passed out, then bite and ear or even not sometimes and he submits, I win, and we go on as if nothing ever happened." Matthias shrugged, "Even if I could train it out of him, there's no guarantee the behavior wouldn't resurface, and then I wouldn't be prepared for it." Matthias' eyes turned back to Indigo. "I'm curious, what do you think of that?"
  24. Matthias nodded slowly and gave an apologetic smile, immediately catching her sudden lack of enthusiasm in the discussion, he himself had felt the same thing moments ago. It wasn't that the discussion had become uninteresting or that he no longer enjoyed her company, the simple fact was that many words had been spoken, more than he usually spoke in a week. It was starting to become dry, both literally in his mouth and figuratively in the discussion, it seemed that she had a similar view towards over-socialization. "You can indeed." Matthias replied, moving back slightly as she placed her weapon on the table. Interesting, she hadn't taken that step earlier, in fact he had nearly completely disarmed himself just to set her at ease. The fact that she was setting her weapon on the table meant a lot and he kept his distance to show his respect for that action. "It's... unique," he finally commented, already regretting the choice of words, though there was no other adjective that sprang immediately to his mind. "I'm sorry I can't pay it a better compliment as I'm sure it deserves, I simply have neither the experience or knowledge of such weapons to come up with one." Matthias decided with the very short explanation, trying to indicate to Indigo that he had caught on to her mood and was letting the conversation drop in the least awkward way he could think of. "I don't use them because if something were to go wrong, or if I were to run out of ammunition... I don't want to be left with a blunt club to defend myself." He shrugged, "a rifle is a good tool, just not one I'm suited to, besides, Rip hates the loud noise it makes." Matthias had finally finished addressing all topics at hand and used the opportunity to break the conversation at least for the moment lest either of them become more exhausted. "Let me get us some water," and without waiting for an answer he stood, simultaneously waving his hand across the table, causing a knife to disappear under the fur bracer of his right arm. "Stay," Matthias growled low at Rip as he said the word. The wolf pinned his ears back and to the side, a move that most people assumed was defiant or hostile, but that would be straight back, the slight rotation to the side changed the body-language completely from aggression to submission. Good, he seemed like he would stay put for the moment. Matthias signaled the bartender as he walked over and was quickly on his way out the door with three metal bowls. A moment later he returned, handing the bowls of heaping snow to the bartender who placed the before the fire for a minute before handing them back to Matthias, now filled with drinkable water. Matthias returned to the table and sat down, setting one bowl before Rip and one before Indigo. Even though he had broke off the conversation, he did feel like sharing something about Rip to help Indigo understand their relationship, at least from the wolf's perspective. "He's thirsty," Matthias smiled, holding his bowl as Rip stared at him, not yet having made a move to drink out of the bowl Matthias had offered him. "But he won't drink until I do," Matthias shrugged, "I couldn't even make him if I tried. It's just in his blood that he won't eat or drink with me unless I do first." Matthias took a slow sip from his water and put it down, allowing the icy liquid to twist down his throat. As soon as the bowl was set down, Rip immediately began lapping at his own water, glancing up at Matthias on occasion as he finished the whole thing.
  25. By the time she was through speaking Matthias' head was beginning to hurt from all the thinking. On one hand he was enjoying it immensely, she was raising questions he either hadn't considered or hadn't had to consider for a long time. He patiently waited for her to finish as he gathered his own thoughts and considered what she said. His only reaction was a slight smile, life really was complex when it came down to it, but not many people thought of it that way. "I believe in absolute morals, rules that do not change from person to person that define right and wrong. But I'm not arrogant enough to say that I know exactly what they are. I know murder is wrong, but what about killing in self defense? I know that stealing is wrong, but what about taking from someone who has excess to provide for your family that would otherwise starve? Lying is wrong, but if someone was hunting a friend of yours who was hiding in your home and they asked you if that friend was there, would it be right or wrong to lie and say that he was not?" Matthias shrugged, "I could not exist in the same dream as someone who did not believe that murder was wrong, or that stealing was ok, or that lying should be commonplace. But a woman with whit and insight might convince me that her morals were more correctly understood than my own." Matthias gazed intently at Indigo, making it obvious that she was the one he was referring to, not because he believed that she had any interest in being such a woman, but because he intended the compliment to fall to her as she had proved both a quick whit and full of insight. "If what you said were to come to pass, and ignoring my belief that the lack of other animals would be our doom as well, then I would rely on the investments I've made. The people I've given my excess too, my mark. They are my investment. While I do not expect anything in return from them, I would go to them and seek their good will in exchange for whatever use they would have for me. And while it may be foolish to some, I would rather put my savings in people and favors than coins and metal." Matthias gave her a warm smile, "though you are of the same mind my brother is, he tells me the same thing. I simply choose not to worry so much about tomorrow that I miss today." Matthias noted the twist to Indigo's face when he spoke of women and children. It always fascinated him when people, especially women and children, took offense to his feeling. And it was a feeling, even more than a belief, it was instinctual, the desire to protect. He couldn't not feel it, though he didn't have to act on it of course. It wasn't like he believed women and children were inferior for no reason at all. They were simply different, they had different needs, just as he had different needs. There were very few women he'd ever met, certainly the exception to the rule, who were as strong or built to hunt as he was. And children were not yet developed in mind or body, if someone didn't watch out for them then it was natural that they die out. Which I suppose is why we have parents... Matthias mused. "I have offended you, but you agree with me already, the simple truth is that all are different, some differences are just more common than others. Children are fast, women may choose to settle their differences with violence, just as some men may choose to do so with words, just as some women could probably kill me in a fight." He shrugged, "but not every child is fast, not every woman has a silver tongue, and not every man is strong. Protection is taking care of someone who can't otherwise take care of themselves. I wouldn't feel the need to protect someone who didn't need it, and while it's not always the case, most instances you can tell at a glance." Matthias returned his gaze to her eyes, "I have a feeling you would need it much less than most, but everyone needs it at some point, even me." "So you have a fairly good idea of my dream. May I ask what is yours?" Matthias asked the question simply. He was actually quite interested in the answer. Since Indigo seemed to have thought so much about these things. Most people's beliefs didn't register to Matthias as interesting, but Indigo was proving that she actually considered her beliefs before simply accepting them, that made her interesting, and her dream no doubt would be an outworking of all those beliefs.