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AroaraAngelwolf

Project: Prides and packs (open)

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Terra was about to say something in reply to what Swift said when Kubo came out and diffused the situation. She cringed slightly at the former’s response to what the cook had said and then was also surprised at how the latter reacted. She could only watch as he walked away, tempted somewhat to go over to his cottage to see if she could say or do something to possibly get him back in a better mood but at the same time wasn’t sure how to do those things. Her attention then went back to the newcomers just as Swift said and asked asked about there having to be a way out to Leif and could only sigh. “We’ve all tried one time or another. We’ve been here a bit longer and know that there’s no way out. If there’s a loophole somewhere we have yet to find it,” she said a bit sadly before turning her attention to the woods.

Edited by SkySong278

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Aleiss

Pride Camp

 

At the sound of the nanny braying, Aleiss pivoted back around. They hadn’t expected it to charge at them; they had expected it to be satisfied when they had turned and walked in the other direction. Clearly they didn’t know enough about goats. An overly-muscled redhead came out of nowhere and tackled the goat before Aleiss could move out of the way, then introduced herself. 

 

“Okay,” said Aleiss, struggling to process the surprise deluge of information. They would have been fine if they’d been prepared, but being given several pieces of information when they hadn’t been prepared for English and had still been thinking about how much they wanted to read the Wikipedia article on goats was too much. They’d missed the redhead’s name entirely, which was unfortunate because they didn’t want to ask and look like they hadn’t been paying attention. They didn’t even know how they were supposed to reply to the redhead, hence the ‘okay’. Normally the standard response would be to reply with their name, but they couldn’t do that if the redhead already knew it. Their whole script was thrown off and they felt as though they were floundering. 

 

“Uh, yes,” they said. “Food, I mean. Thank you.” Ugh, that wasn’t right, but the words were already out of their mouth. They were hungry, once they cared to notice. That made sense, since they hadn’t been given anything to eat the night before (to keep them from throwing up and drowning in their sleep, they assumed). 
 

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Pack | Anthony

 

"Do you even know what the definition of a loophole is?" Anthony had risen early, woken by his mother's nightmares. She'd fallen back asleep once her sweating stopped but he was restless by then. He chose to step outside, in time to see the white wolf--who'd been absent most of yesterday--take off again. He wanted to follow and see what he could learn; an unknown was dangerous.

 

The approach of a vehicle distracted him though and, instead, he lingered to watch humans drop off more shifters--more wolves. Hovering at the edge, he had examined the twins as Kubo and Terra came out. Even as a third newcomer arrived on foot rather than in a cage. 

 

He folded his arms across his chest when the twins switched between English and Spanish. Anthony could have intergected but he let the strangers and Kubo play out their brief drama; none of it was really his concern. 

 

When all of it seemed to be done, he had decided to speak up at Terra's egregious use of "loophole". "Last time I checked, loopholes are only possible if someone is exploiting a legal contract. Kidnapping, lying, running experiments on us without our consent, and then dumping us in the middle of an unknown jungle does not a legal contract make. This might come as a surprise to you, but I wouldn't place any bets on the belief the humans told you anything resembling the truth."

 

He frowned and, at the faint sound of footsteps, turned to see Veronica's approach.

 

"You know that isn't fair, Anthony. You understood what Terra meant. A lot of people are stressed and upset; slips happen." His mother patted his arm before focusing on the others. "Let's start again. This is Anthony, my son, and I'm Veronica. We were dumped here yesterday."

 

Her hand was cold.

 

Anthony glanced at her from the corner of his eye, studying her better. At first, he'd thought her wet hair was from showering off the grime of the day before. Now he reconsidered that.

 

Since he couldn't smell the emotions others gave off unless it was something intense, he'd learned to rely on body language and the sound of one's pulse, or heartbeat. He turned his attention back to the trio of newcomers; he wouldn't express his thoughts about his mother's fear. He wouldn't expose her to strangers.

 

"Greetings aside," he said, "we should decide on what to do. I have no plans to stay here and I'd like to know what the rest of you have already tried. The sooner we can come up with a plan, the sooner we can get home and back to our lives. There are eleven of us here. I don't believe in the idea that we can't find a way."

 

 

Edited by ValidEmotions

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桔梗  / Kikyo 

Pride Territory

 

 

Kikyo lets out a squeak as Diego pins her, although she knows quite well that her brother's approach is gentle, always. The noise is more for dramatic effect than anything, as Diego's brilliant energy is infectious. Even during the worst times of their shared childhood, he could always cheer her up with exaggerated words and playing around. Since they are alone, Kikyo feels quite secure in letting herself act silly, around Diego. 

 

"I can't beat the --" she begins, fully intending to return the challenge, but her eye catches on something in the distance from behind Diego's massive paw and she drops the act instantly, shocked at being suddenly so revealed.

 

"Cyon-sama!" she says, without thinking, rolling from under Diego's paw -- he applies no pressure -- without hearing her brother's next words, too surprised at realising they had been watching. "Have you come to hunt too --"

 

As she speaks, Kikyo swings her head around, intending to gesture to the large plains to invite Tenebris to join them, but as she sweeps her gaze across the field Kikyo catches sight of a bright white pelt among the grass, and she drags her words out, her brain suddenly stopping function altogether.

 

"Deric-kun?"

 

Not only Tenebris was here, but Deric too? Had they both witnessed Diego and her silly bout of playfighting?

 

 

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mælir / Leif

Pack Territory

 

 

"Well," Leif says, stunned into silence at Kubo's words, "my roommate, ladies and gentlemen. Hope he's doing alright." 

 

Turning back to the scene, he hums to himself. So perhaps his beginning introduction hadn't gone as smoothly as he'd hoped -- from Swift's brash manner to Kubo's harsh outburst, but that didn't surprise or even deter Leif. He has spent too long among all types of personalities to understand that not everyone could be made into a friend, and, if one didn't wish to be bothered, he wouldn't annoy them further. 

 

He chuckles in response to Swift's words, and Terra's explanation -- so it seemed they weren't very close to finding a way out, and neither is Leif; he'd just gotten here, after all! If the project is still just beginning, then he has caught them at just the right time. Feeling adrenaline surge through his veins, he can't help but tilt his head back and smile at the sky, relaxed. It would undoubtedly be a long, harsh journey, but there was no fun in living if there wasn't at least some kind of risk of death or imprisonment. It's gotten him this far, after all.

 

Just then, two others come up to join them; a red-haired woman accompanied by a younger boy, who speaks in harsh tones smoothed by his companion's -- as he finds out a second later, mom's -- gentle mien. 

 

"Excellent energy," he compliments to Anthony, quirking up. "But let's not run the introductions too quickly. Leif Madsen, at your service." A quick dip of the head, a soft bow. "I've spent my career among shifters, but you're all so interesting." He feels for the make of his vape in his pocket once more, the object comforting him. "What do you suggest, Commander?" Turning to Anthony, with an interest. 

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Between the lands

 

Deric was actually more concerned with trying to blend in with the sand then the play fight. He did glance that way when he heard her squeak but was more watching the big cat then her. However when she called out the name of the black cat yesterday he stopped squirming and froze in place eyes locked on her to see where she was looking. He didn't like that one. They spoke in such large words it confused and frustrated him. It was English but for all he knew it could be German thown in. 

 

Then her eyes swept his way and she too froze in place. 'Deric-kun?' He stood up slowly flowers in his mouth still not liking how her body language went from open and playful to guarded and shy. 

 

Pale blue eyes flicked from her to the big beast next to her and back. He slowly walked forward, a few steps while looking at the lion then stopping to look at her for some sort of reassurance that the big creature would not attack him. 

 

Making it within a few feet of them, tense and ready to spring away, he dropped the flowers and nudged the wrapped bouquet twords her slightly, ears flat and eyes on the large cat's paws. This thing was definitely not a house cat. The wolf barely breathed, wanting to shift to draw and 'speak' to Kikyo however his human body is slower, softer, weaker and for a good minute he'd be vulnerable to attacks as he shifted. He's been in that in-between before and he didn't want to experience that pain again. 

 

-

Val  unlike Deric had the forethought to roll in dust before heading in the plains. Fur a red-bown now, it was the perfect camo. He spotted his friend a few miles away, he bright white gleam not so hard to miss. So, he went around in a large circle to see what has made the wolf stop. Hmm, a lion and a serval shifter okay. He supposed the lion made Deric nervous, never seen such a thing before... And assumed that Deric thought the little one was some tall house cat (in which he assumes correctly). 

 

Continuing with his wife circle our of sight and smelling range, black fur made him stop. He sniffed. Half breed. No. Cross breed. Fascinating. However the vibe this one gave off was like one who has seen too much BS on the streets and only cares for themselves. A toothy grin spread across his lips. Just like him. Whomever they where, he hoped they liked guys cuz Val didn't care about gender himself. Just gotta get a little closer.... 

 

 

Pride

 

Ella giggled as she went into her cabin for a moment and came back out with bread, cheese and milk. She  held out bread with a glass of goat milk and a small bit of goat cheese to spread on the bread. "Chetalla. However you can call me Ella. Like Ella enchanted. Now, first thing first. We have a member here who prefers they/them pronouns so please respect their wishes. If you have any pronouns you prefer please let me know and I'll tell the others. I am Queen of the pride, my brother Sam is King. We have been here for two years so if you have any questions please ask us, or any requests or requirements we'll pass those on to the scientists. The researchers trust us for we where born and raised in their facility and known nothing else. I'll take any questions now, and I'll inform you about the answers if I am able to. Somethings I don't know about my brother may know. " She said spreading cheese on her slice of bread and ate it. She had sat down at a picnic table, enjoying the low light of the morning and the cool air. 

 

((Will post pack tomorrow in separate post. I'll let a few others respond to Swift. ))

Edited by AroaraAngelwolf

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Swift | Mark

The twins looked at Terra as she spoke, addressing Swift’s remark that there must be a way out. 

“We’ve all tried one time or another. We’ve been here a bit longer and know that there’s no way out. If there’s a loophole somewhere we have yet to find it.”

Swift wanted to say Well then look some more but knew that the statement would just increase the tension and stayed silent. She nodded as Anthony spoke. “I agree. There’s nothing that can’t be solved if we all work together. All we need is teamwork and, we’ll, motivation. We have enough of that I think.”

She bristled slightly, offended at Lief’s chuckling at her words and turned to Mark, ignoring the red haired shifter. “I’m going for a run.” She usually did whenever she was upset or needed space to think. Her twin nodded. “Okay. I’ll go see if I can find Kubo and talk to him.” “Okay. And remember...” They continued the phrase at the same time. “Be polite, don’t fight with people and be as inoffensive as you can.” Swift said it with a not-so-subtle edge of sarcasm. She felt slightly empathetic towards the spotted dog shifter but thought he could have been nicer about telling them to not get anyone’s hopes up. “I’ll find you after I talk to him,” Mark said. “Don’t go too far.” 

“Okay.”

“Don’t try to escape without me?”

“Yeah.” She turned away, shifted in the blink of an eye and was gone before he could tell her to be careful. 

 

 

Mark headed towards where he had seen Kubo walking after his largely negative outburst about not seeing Alex (or any loved ones for that matter) ever again. “Hello?” he called as he approached the hut. “Kubo? Can we talk?”

Edited by Swiftphoenix

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Kubo opened the door, his hair reached his knees with it unbraided and he would be mistaken as a girl if it wasn't for his toned body. He was partially undressed, a tattoo of the eye of Horus on his left pectoral another of a Swahili saying on his hip, a belly button peircing and a couple nipple rings flashed. He still didn't look to happy. "What? " He barked leaning against the frame. "If you come to apologise for your sister, don't bother. I was an elder of my pack. A leader, a father to others like my pack was for me. A big nomadic family. I was so close to having a mate, seeing my three adopted pups being accepted into our pack- today of all days was when they would receive the mark. You don't think I've tried every which way to get out? Digging, running, fighting. All I got was a few gunshot wounds, tranq darts and a shock so bad I passed out and woke up back here with a dumb white wolf and a ex-gang member for company. But if you both think you're so special and can get out be my guest. Just don't come crying to me when you get hurt or one of you ends up shot and killed. Nobody leaves here. Now let me shower in peace!" He snarled and slammed the door heading back to the bathroom and locking that door before getting in the shower. 

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Aleiss

Pride Camp

 

“Thank you,” Aleiss said, joining the redhead. “Ella,” they repeated to help it stick in their mind. Had it been that obvious that they’d missed it the first time? Embarrassing, but it wasn’t something they had to worry about now. They took their own slice of bread and spread some cheese over it; it was okay. Not the best bread they’d ever tasted, but satisfyingly dense. “Just use any pronouns for me. Switch it up, if you can. I don’t mind.” 

 

Ella hadn’t slowed the deluge of information, but at least now Aleiss was more prepared to follow along with it. They were still tired, having just gotten up and feeling the slowness of sleep, but they were able to catch most of it. A Queen? Seemed a little pretentious- there couldn’t have been more than two dozen people living in the hamlet, and from the sounds of it there were a lot fewer. Whatever, Ella hadn’t told Aleiss to call her ‘her Majesty’ or anything, so they’d just keep talking to her like normal unless they were told to stop. 

 

Well, questions. They were sure they had plenty of those, given that they had just arrived at a mysterious new place. When they tried to come up with one to start with, though, their mind came up blank and they said the first thing that came to fill the empty space. “What’s the Wi-Fi password?”  

 

Stupid question, obviously. They didn’t even have their phone, a fact that they noticed and lamented at every moment. They kept feeling the lack of a familiar weight in their pocket, reaching for it in panic, and then remembering. 

 

They scrambled to think of a better question. “Do you know what kind of drugs they used to force me to shift? Side effects, at least? I could maybe try to figure out how it works, if I had a pen and paper. Or, better question, did the scientists leave my drugs -- I mean, any medication for me?” They still hadn’t asked any of the important questions, but at least they’d gotten closer. 
 

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Terra looked down at her feet and looked a bit sheepish when she heard everything that Anthony said, gritting her teeth somewhat before hearing what Veronica said afterward and felt somewhat better. Then when she heard the former’s suggestion, she looked up again when she had gotten her expression under control and nodded softly before smiling a bit but then that faded somewhat when she watched Mark go towards Kubo’s cottage. She wasn’t sure if he’d be able to get him to be in a better mood but perhaps he could try. She saw the latter slam his door and sighed a bit before heading towards her own cottage after awhile. She read a bit on the couch before making a small meal for herself there when it was about lunch time or so and eating it afterward.

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Tenebris

Pride Territory

 

Tenebris lifted their head from where they were examining the ground, ears pricked forward, perking up at the sound of their name. Kikyo sounded surprised (she needed to be more aware of her surroundings as one so small), but not upset, so Tenebris gave their tail a single wag. Their good mood didn’t last long, however -- Kikyo pointed out a white wolf and Tenebris raised their hackles. 


They should have been more aware of their surroundings too. Were rocks so important that they couldn’t pay attention to what was around them? (Yes, but they could blame themself for missing the wolf anyway.) They sniffed the air, and recognized that yes, that was the scent of the shifter that Kikyo had met the day before. Why was he here? Tenebris briefly glanced around, wondering if there was an ambush, but they didn’t search for long. Deric looked fearful and ready to bolt, but he wasn’t concealing his presence. Was he holding… flowers? Why? 


They weren’t entirely sure how to react to this. They’d come for rocks and company, not aggressive wolves with flowers. They laid their ears against their head, then reconsidered and forced themself to relax. There was no reason to act frightened or hostile; they had nothing to fear, and acting like they did would only stir up conflict and weaken their position. They strode over to the group, making quick time due to their long legs. “Greetings, Kikyo, Diego. We have met once again,” they said. They considered asking if there was an issue, but such a leading question was needlessly hostile and they were in a fairly good mood. Instead, they merely flicked their ears towards Deric inquisitively. "I hope you do not find my presence to be an intrusion; if such is the case I shall leave with no ill will."
 

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Swift | Mark

Mark stared at the closed door. He wasn’t all that surprised at Kubo’s second reaction, though. Sure, he’d hoped the African shifter would be slightly calmer by now, but at the same time he’d half expected Kubo to give him a clawing. “Well, I haven’t come to apologise for Swift,” he growled to the wood in front of him. “We don’t do it that way. Shows what you know.” He shifted back to wolf form and sat down at the entrance to the hut. “Looks like I’ll just wait for him to finish, then.” Some would call him stubborn, some would call him determined, but he wasn’t leaving until they had a proper conversation, preferably with Kubo wearing clothes this time. 

 

 

Swift felt and heard twigs snapping underneath her paws as she bounded through the forest. “Seriously, such an idiot... can’t tell me what to do... Abuela would never stand for it...” After living with a Mexican family for a few years, the twins had stayed with an old woman who had took them in; used to the Spanish for “Grandmother”, it seemed natural to call her Abuela. She was the one who had broken most of the bad habits and taught them manners and politeness, though she hadn’t tolerated any nonsense or infighting. Swift could only imagine what she would have thought of the scene in the camp. Nothing good, of course. She probably would have used the opportunity to tell all of them off. She slowed as she reached a big tree. They hadn’t seen many trees that big before, having lived in the city with rather scrawny greenery not fit for climbing. She didn’t even know if she could climb. Why not try now? While being trapped in an enclosed area with other shifters who were probably as mad at her as Kubo, she might as well explore her tree-climbing abilities. Right?

Crouching down, she jumped up as high as she could, reaching for the branch above, but she missed and her claws sank into the bark. She found herself hanging about three feet off the ground and yelped in surprise. Um... now what? After a moment of thought, she decided to keep going. Not all people climb this bad, she thought. Maybe I’ll get better after a while. Maybe. 

She stretched towards the branch again, dug in her claws so as to make them stay hooked into the tree. Success! She grabbed the branch and hauled herself up. Easy going from here, she assumed as she spotted a clear pattern of branches sturdy enough to walk on. She leapt lightly onto each bough, some shaking slightly under her weight. She continued, jumping up toward where blue sky showed through the leaves. This was what she needed; an activity just for fun. Who knew what would happen next, and maybe they would be too busy running for their lives to have fun, which was the most important thing, Abuela always said.

Edited by Swiftphoenix

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Your World | Diego

Savannah - Outside of Camp

 

Kikyo did not answer Diego’s question much to his disappointment. How could she do that to him? After he so generously offered her her life in return for a decent answer! Diego was about to chastise his sister for disobeying such a simple order, but before he could she wiggled out of his grasp. He heard her call out two names, one in excitement and another in a low, confused tone. That caught Diego off guard. Diego had no idea who Deric was and yet KIkyo spoke his name in such a hushed voice as though she were almost afraid to say it. 

 

Diego allowed Kikyo to fully remove herself from his grasp before he placed his two paws squarely next to one another. From the underbrush, a white wolf emerged. Diego recalled that Kikyo had mentioned befriending a wolf. Was this the wolf she had spoken of? Warily, the wolf stepped walked forward, sending anxious glances to Diego’s massive form. Diego watched with narrowed eyes as Deric gently laid down a bouquet of flowers on the ground before growing incredibly still. Tenebris soon followed, greeting the siblings, but Diego gave them little more than an acknowledging glance. 

 

“Kikyo,” Diego began, staring down at his younger sister. “When you said you met a wolf the other day, you did not claim he was a shifter. Did you know if he was a shifter when you two met?” It was obvious the wolf wasn’t a normal animal. Diego had encountered many dogs and even coyotes in his travels and none of them had acted like the wolf, let alone carry a bouquet of flowers and present it to someone. Deric had to be a shifter and, if he was, Diego needed to know if he kept that from Kikyo or if Kikyo had kept it from Diego.

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桔梗  / Kikyo 

Pride Territory

 

Kikyo felt she was getting whiplash from all the sudden things that had happened in such a short span of time. The serval collected herself, raising her body up from her position previous, and nervously flicked her tail; the appearance of both Deric and Tenebris so soon was leading towards a truth that she knew Diego would have to know eventually, but their present circumstances did not prove ideal for explaining such a thing.

 

Regardless, manners first. She let out a pleased purr as Tenebris spoke, so formally as always, and shook her head gently.

 

"No, Cyon-sama," she responded, although her posture was stiff, nervous, as she watched Diego barely acknowledge Tenebris' presence, instead locking in on Deric's form. For his benefit, the white wolf seemed placid, ears back as he nudged the flowers -- flowers?! Her heart swelled happily -- towards them. 

 

"We're quite happy to have you," she said happily, aligning her paws politely. Then, as she had feared ...

 

Kikyo curved her tail around her paws, taking a deep breath before she faced Diego.

 

"This is Deric-kun," she introduced, softly. "I saw him hunting and accidentally interrupted; at first, I didn't know. But he trusted me with that knowledge and I didn't want to break a promise, big brother."

 

She stared at Diego with wide eyes, but unusually calm -- she hoped her brother, strong and fair as he was, would understand why she had chosen to hide such a fact. The circumstances of their present situation were strange, and it was not so much that Kikyo had deliberately withheld information from him as she had respected Deric's privacy. 

 

At the mention of the wolf shifter, Kikyo uncurled and instead crossed the small gap between the two larger shifters, still locked in aggression against each other. She nudged Deric with her head, urging him up. 

 

"This is my big brother," she introduced, "Diego! He's strong and fun and not at all scary." 

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Pride

 

"We... Don't have any internet or anything other than kitchen appliances and lamps that require electricity. I was informed your medicine is in your bag of things, enough for a two month supply. They drug they use to put us out is a standard tranq, however to make us shift forms they give us what they call Cedathemerol. " She said it like Seeda-them-orall. "It's a mix of pheromones, adrenaline, morphine and G79 a DNA sequence that allows us to shift and acts as an inhibitor when administered. Side effects include: sweating, dry mouth, dizziness, inability to shift for a few minutes, numbness of tongue, ears, or tail, and in rare cases rash, anaphylactic shock, blurryness of vision and a headache or severe migraine. " Chetalla said softly. "The pride works on the lion pride method in a way. I am leader, I've been here the longest along with my brother Samuel. We keep the peace between members the best we can, and more importantly the peace between us and the scientists. To control our environment we are given limited resources in terms of the outside world, thus no WiFi. My brother has more knowledge of the science jargen then I do, I prefer the natural sciences, studies of plants and stars then chemistry and physics." She said tilting her head. "I hope you enjoy it here. We have other members, just a few are gone or not awake just yet."

 

 

 

 

----

 

Between the lands

 

Deric did one last look between them and shifted human, hoping she was right about her brother. Once human, he continues to squat and then started to 'speak' using the ASL he knew. 

 

A moment of silence and then he did the hand motions again entailing a groan from a couple of feet behind Tenebris. 

 

"Fine, I'll translate for you. I'm surprised you knew I was here. " Said the red wolf straightening up and gracefully slinked his way around the other hybrid. "I am Valiant. So this little serval is what got you in a tiffy last night? She is a little cutie pie, although I prefer this smooth speaking hunk." The wolf did several things, first when he introduced himself he held up a paw and presented it like a royal, then did a sassy walk past Tenebris, tail brushing against their cheek twords Kikyo without a ounce of fear of the lion. Then he turned and faced the black hybrid again twords the last part and did his trademark half starved toothy grin wiggling his eyebrows at the cat while striking a pose that made his thin boney body look almost apealing. With a wink he turned back to Deric whom was signing again.

 

"He says: Don't get mad with her, I asked her to stay quiet. I do not completely trust those who are brought here and I did not tell them about her. Being mute I can keep many secrets. Kikyo.. Kikyo like inuyasha?" Snorted Valiant getting off task of translating. "I need to get you guys a couple costume for Halloween as long as you grow out your hair boy." He grinned again chuckling. Deric chuffed and thew sand in his direction signing fast. 

 

"Of course you don't get it, you never seen anime before let alone a TV.  Ugh fine!" Val rolled his eyes and continued to act as Deric's voice. "She helped me when I got hurt hunting. I brought her flowers to thank her. We both don't mean you any harm." Val then wiggled his eyebrows once again at Tenebris. "Well unless you ask to be bitten sexy." He winked and Deric shook his head with his hands on his face. 

 

 

--

 

Pack

Kubo came out of the hut about fifteen minutes later finishing his hair braid and stopped seeing the wolf. He huffed and crossed his arms waiting for Mark to speak this time. He was still upset, but these are new people to the area and don't know how it all works around here. He impatiently waved his hand to get the wolf to speak not wanting to open his own mouth out of consern he may flip again. 

 

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Mark

Kubo had come out again. To Mark’s relief, he didn’t burst out angrily again. He made a gesture Mark assumed must mean he should speak, and he leaped at it, knowing he had to choose his words carefully. He didn’t want to set the hunter off like before. He shifted to human form, looking at the ground. 

“Hi.” 

Okay, not such an eloquent start. He quickly spoke more to make up for it. 

“Look, I’m sorry if we offended you or seemed to be making it worse by trying to have hope—“ He’d seen that in a book somewhere, “—but I guess that’s just how we are. We just have hope. I know you must be feeling pretty gloomy right now, but that doesn’t mean things, that reality has to be that bad. We can change our paths if we try. I’m going to try, and so will Swift. I’m sure there are some others who’ll join us... will you?”

He peeked up at Kubo. It would be good if he agreed that they should at least try to get out of here but if he didn’t, Mark couldn’t blame him. All those things about his fiancée and adopted pups... he would feel terrible, and maybe as grumpy as Kubo, if he lost Swift. He waited for a reply, preparing himself for denial. 

 

 

Swift

Swift balanced at the top of the tree, breathless and proud of her newfound skill. It was getting a little boring, though, with no one around. She knew Mark was probably trying to talk to Kubo right now and maybe it was best that she wasn’t there? She was not exactly the most calm or level-headed of people.

Making her way down the tree, she decided to hunt. It might be better if she returned with food for the others as a sort of peace offering before talking or apologising to the spotted canine — it didn’t come easy to her and, she admitted to herself, she’d probably try to rally him to the cause some time in the talk. 

She leapt lightly down, stumbling a little as a leaf slid from underneath her paw, and prowled through the undergrowth looking for prey. 

Edited by Swiftphoenix

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Tenebris

Pride Territory

 

Tenebris blinked in confusion. Diego had known that that his sister had met a wolf, but not that the wolf had been a shifter? How? It seemed to them that a wild wolf would have been just as concerning as a shifter. 

 

Either way, Kikyo had claimed that Tenebris’ presence wasn’t unwanted, which took a weight off their shoulders. 

 

At the sound of a growl behind them they jumped and twisted around, fur puffed. Behind them stood a wolf, tall and scraggly. His fur was filthy and matted with dirt, and overall he looked pathetically scrawny and unable to take care of himself. He’d come from downwind so that they wouldn’t be able to smell him. 

 

It was unfortunate that they’d been too shocked to bite his tail as it slapped them in the face. How rude. 

 

Was the dirty wolf trying to flirt with both them and Diego? It was the only thing that made sense - clearly Diego was far more of a ‘hunk’ then they, skinny as they were, was. (Valiant was right about one thing - Diego was certainly blessed with good looks and the strong will to keep himself in shape.) Tenebrous wasn’t entirely sure how to react. Of course, they knew they were flirt-worthy. They, after all, had impeccable taste in aesthetics, knew the alleged magical properties and chemical compositions of two dozen minerals, and had an excellent set of tattoos that professed both their religion (for lack of a better word) and their knowledge of SCP GoIs. Valiant had no way of knowing that, however, unless he’d been spying on them for quite awhile (which wouldn’t have been a point in his favor). 

 

"Well unless you ask to be bitten sexy." 

 

Right. Had no one ever told Valiant that he came on too strong? Talk of such things five seconds after meeting someone was uncouth, and it was bold of him to think that he would be doing the biting. “Only if you don’t have fleas, which I’m not convinced by,” they said dismissively. Their rock collecting had been interrupted and they had more important things to worry about. At least Valiant was cultured enough to know about anime. 

 

“Where did you come from?” Then, because they couldn’t resist, “Where will you go?” The situation involved Deric, Kikyo, and Diego more than it involved them and they didn’t want to pry, but there were some questions that had to be asked. Why were shifters from outside of the camp suddenly showing up? How long had they been around for? “How many others are you aware of?” 
 

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Aleiss

Pride Camp

 

"Ah, yeah, I kind of figured. Wonder if we could make a radio? I have no idea how, but I've heard of objects picking up radio signals. Ah, sorry, that's not important." They'd gotten off track again. Besides, whatever appliances the hamlet had had to be a lot more important than the chance of getting a radio. 

 

Ugh, more dry mouth? They'd never be able to eat anything. Still, that was interesting, though not what they expected. "DNA? Huh, any idea what kind of vector it uses? Retroviruses?" Did it cause permanent changes? Why DNA, and not using a protein directly? Weird. Hm, or maybe it wasn't combined with the host's DNA at all? "Plasmids? Would that work?" They didn't know; gene expression wasn't their focus. Maybe there were plasmids that could produce proteins in human cells before being destroyed by the host's defenses? No, wait, that wouldn't work. A plasmid would still need some way to get into the cells to be of any use. Very interesting. 

 

Lion pride method...? Alright then. They tried to think of some kind of joke about baby killing, but nothing came to mind. That probably wasn't a good idea, anyway. 

 

"Oh, I'm sure it'll be awful," Aleiss said brightly. There was no way that they were going to enjoy living there. That wasn't Ella's fault, it was just never going to happen. They were going to get horribly sunburned, forget how their favorite songs went, and be kept up at night with burning questions about the history of embroidery with no way to answer them. It'd be terrible. 

Edited by Kiran

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Your World | Diego

Savannah - Outside of Camp

 

That was all quite… puzzling. Diego stared stoically at the small gathering of shifters, curling his tail around his paws. It was in Kikyo’s nature to be kind and thoughtful towards others, that Diego knew, but he was unsure how to feel about her prioritizing a promise to a stranger over her own safety. There was potentially no danger, yes, but knowing now that Kikyo would prioritize a promise towards a stranger to letting Diego know what could be important information was worrying to say at the least. It was a gateway to something that could lead to Kikyo placing trust in the wrong crowd somewhere down the line, and that wasn’t something Diego wanted to encourage.

 

Still, they were in company of strangers, odd ones at that. Deric’s apology aside, Diego could lecture Kikyo later when they were in safer company. 

 

“I wasn’t aware there were wolf shifters out here,” Diego said, quickly leaping to his feet. “We were told that there was a limited number of people here and that no longer seems to be the case.” The obvious fliration from Valiant went completely over Diego’s oblivious head. He strolled over towards the strangers and looked them over curiously. “I’d have been much less worried about Kikyo going off on her own if I had gotten to meet you earlier.” Diego would have also been less worried about Kikyo playing with a wolf if the twins had established that there were other shifters around. Actually, he had asked them about that earlier, hadn’t he? He had been told some birds were the most dangerous things around. How curious.

 

“Do you all have somewhere to live?” Diego said, looking between the two strangers. “I was told there weren’t other people around, but if you’re both here that’s clearly not true and I can’t imagine you’re just sleeping in the woods.” Well, he could, but that seemed unlikely. Perhaps there was another village somewhere that the twins were unaware of.

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Pack | Anthony

 

He almost wanted to laugh. No sooner had he expressed 'let's talk' did nearly the entire group disperse. Leif was the one who remained, turning to him. Anthony mostly ignored the 'commander' nickname, unsure if Leif was just joking. Most likely.

 

Rubbing the back of his neck, he sighed. "Ambush for one, distraction for a second. More time to think of other ideas. Up until yesterday, this camp only had six people. Except, given how... Inclined, everyone seems to be to separate themselves here, I doubt any more than two or three people worked at an idea together that wasn't hunting." All he had were the observations of last night and this morning, though.

 

The biggest obstacle right now appeared to be Kubo's self pity and loss of hope--which had done well to shut down everyone else (with maybe the exception of Jason; he wasn't certain). Especially as that quick flare of anger from him was eager to deny others their choice for freedom. 

 

Veronica touched Anthony's shoulder, catching his attention before glancing between both young men. "What if we get food first? No sense in making future plans on empty stomachs, hm?" 

 

[[asdjodisfjsldkjf I'm sorry this took as long as it did, and for such a little thing.]]

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Pack

 

Kubo sighed shook his head and stepped around him shifting. He took a few steps away and stopped looking around like he was preparing for a hunt. "Watch what you say, they can hear you while human. They see you too but I don't know where or how they do. I'm in, but only if you heed my words and tread very carefully. That goes for all of you. This will not happen overnight. They are expecting you to excape. Make your plans and try without me first. Then come to me acting like you are defeated. I feel like the more we have, the more chance someone has of slipping outside these walls. I'm going to gather herbs and fruit." He said tail swishing as he picked up a basket in his mouth and trotted passed each one of the newest members and into the woods. 

 

---

 

Between lands

 

Val huffed. "Very rude to assume I have fleas. Why should we tell you where we came from cotton eyed Joe?" He said sitting up like a prairie dog, paws folded in front of him. Deric began to sign again to answer both of their questions but when his translator ignored him, he began to draw a map going directly to their camp.

 

As for the question of how many there where, Deric drew stick figures. Five male figures with a plus sign and two more pointing to Val and himself then five girl figures. Next a wolf head and a tree branching through it indicating some form of dog family. 

 

He then pointed to the three cats, then in the direction of the way Kikyo pointed to him before adding to the map a few lines then a question mark in a house in the general area of the Savannah. Then he drew the three figures another question mark, a cat head and a tree then pointed at the three cat shifters once more. He looked at Kikyo seeing she would understand his drawings and translate given his "voice" was now blatantly ignoring him. 

 

----------

 

pride

"Uh.... I don't know how it works. We're only told what it makes us do. I believe it's a different formula for each type of shifter, because pheromones have different compositions for each species and sub species not only that, but Felidae and Canines have different ways of releasing the scent trails." Ella tilted her head. "Again, my brother is more into the chemical sciences and I am more into the natural sciences. He's the one to ask. "

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After Terra finished her lunch, she left her cottage and saw Kubo heading towards the woods in his wolf form and a basket in his mouth. She shifted into her own wolf form and quickly followed after him before asking after catching up to and walking beside him, Is it okay if I join you and help? It’ll go quicker with two people or would you rather do it alone? She was mostly looking for something to do and she wasn’t sure if she should be near Anthony right then in case she got on his bad side again or the other new members, Veronica and Mark.

Edited by SkySong278

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