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Need, Need, Need
Full Summer | Fossil Butte | steady rainfall, and thunder in the distance

11963
Harlow is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Harlow Gail Bamsy
 

Assuming June Bug is around and Tahti is traveling, but who can truly know such things?
__

Two days.  Wait.

Harlow sat on her instructions, a dripping monolith, and watched the rain blur out the landscape.  What little greenery that managed to thrive up here turned black in the rain, and the missing shadows made everything flat.  Like she was in a painting, except of course wolves don’t know about those.

She would check in the glen for her Empress if she did not find her today.  And if she was not there, up to the hillside pack, and she would track and track and find the one she loved the most.  The one she needed.

How she needed Nima was an unexamined question.  It was placed on hold, while larger things moved into place, settled implacably among all the other things she had to know.  But all these things, all these questions were subservient to the place she knew she belonged.

She would wait until today.


Feb 14, 2018 12:51 AM

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194841
Nima is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Nima Daniels fenshae
 

Nima was tired.

It was not the ideal condition with which to start a war. One should be well-rested for such things. But she had done much hard travelling in the last few days, and she was not as young as she had once been.

It would be good to rest, and to recover, before the fight that was to come.

The rain dampened her senses, and the Empress strode cautiously toward the stony hill, eyes and ears sharp for signs of Kingdom wolves. As far as she knew, they had abandoned the hills in favor of Elliot’s stupid cave—an advantage in her favor.

Still. It paid to be cautious.

“Harlow?” she woofed out, quietly, squinting through the rain at the pale frame ahead, hoping it was the right wolf.


Feb 14, 2018 01:25 AM — Post #1

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194843
June is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
June Bug Dingo
 

Rain was good. Better than birds, at least.

Something she’d learned traveling with a wolf like Harlow was how to keep quiet for the most part. None of these wolves liked to talk, it seemed. That was tough for June because she did like to talk. A lot. To trees, lizards, or whatever else would listen. Harlow and Tahti were sort of like trees.

Except for the fact that they weren’t but.

The similarities were undoubtedly there.

Today was good because the two days were over, which meant they were meeting with Nima.

She was still unsure why she was so excited.

Maybe just nervous.

Nonetheless, hearing her friend’s voice did start her tail up (it was already wagging, but now faster).


Feb 14, 2018 01:51 AM — Post #2

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194938
Harlow is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Harlow Gail Bamsy
 

She was not a wolf with imagination, and did not have to worry she’d hallucinated the low call.  That was Nima.  Her head turned, and she woofed back, already getting up and shaking off the rain.

They were all alone out here.  It was strange.  Elliot’s pack had not been out on the hills in a long time.

She spotted June Bug, who she had briefly forgotten about; the dinky thing was maybe a little too small to have enough brain for a wolf, but she’d been pleasant.  Harlow waved her tail back at her small companion, willing herself to focus on the present and not nosedive into Nima, Nima, NIMA.

It wasn’t easy.


Feb 15, 2018 04:51 AM — Post #3

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194985
Nima is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Nima Daniels fenshae
 

Not one pale shape, after all—but two. June Bug had stuck around, then?

That was a pleasant surprise. Nima had always had a soft spot for broken idiots. Perhaps she would talk to the girl properly soon, and get an idea of what she was like. She did, after all, have a plan for her in all of this.

But first, she needed to talk to Harlow.

“June,” Nima said, dipping her head. “Happy to see you are still with us. Would you do me the kindness of keeping watch?” She glanced to Harlow, brows lifted, before looking back to the smaller girl. “I have a business matter to discuss with Harlow, briefly, and then I should love to speak with you also. Bark for me if anyone approaches, will you?”

And then, with a jerk of the head, she started toward the slope of the hill, aiming for the wedge of stone that she knew hid an alcove fit for two. An alcove where pups had been conceived; an alcove where dreams of salvation had been born.

An alcove where, now, she intended to discuss kin-slaying with a long-lost loyalist.


Feb 15, 2018 04:22 PM — Post #4

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195315
June is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
June Bug Dingo
 

Clumsily-yet, also gracefully-she stumbled toward Harlow, never far behind.

As it turns out, she should have stayed back. Nima requested she keep watch. Ok!

”Ok!”

She turned around, sat, and watched. Really, really watched.

Nothing would get past her.


Feb 17, 2018 01:10 PM — Post #5

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195418
Harlow is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Harlow Gail Bamsy
 

Harlow liked the weird little thing.  The way she moved reminded her of a bug, a mayfly maybe.  Light, floaty and erratic.  She might even be a functional choice for a guard, but Harlow wasn’t completely confident the pup wouldn’t accidentally join the side of whatever marauders might track them.  She had a feeling Nima was simply removing her from the situation, though, and it was hard not to feel a sense of anticipation at that.

She had come back, two days in.  She looked unharmed, only wet.  Harlow snuffled reservedly under the empress’s chin, a little gesture of fealty that didn’t overburden either of them with the odor of wet fur.

She followed, because it was in Harlow to follow.  Her amber eyes rested patiently on the face of her beloved, waiting to be told what she needed to hear.


Feb 18, 2018 03:55 AM — Post #6

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195585
Nima is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Nima Daniels fenshae
 

The girl was, after all, a very precious idiot. Nima kind of looked forward to taking her home when this was all said and done.

Perhaps she could be given to Scotch, if Scotch intended to return home. If Nima would allow him back. That was a question she had not given much thought to yet. It was too much of a distraction. She would tend to it later.

Still—Scotch seemed to like idiots. Perhaps the June Bug would be good for him.

Harlow’s nose was under her chin, and Nima extended her tongue toward the bridge of her bodyguard’s nose. If only Belarus had waited. What a pair they could have been, her twin hunting dogs, one at each flank. How protected she could have felt.

Well, no matter. She had what she had.

“I’ve gathered us a small army,” she said, with a wry sort of smile now that they were in the more enclosed space. “At least two more fighters guaranteed, possibly several others if they heed the call. Tomorrow, they should start to arrive. Have I missed any trouble while I was away?”


Feb 18, 2018 07:04 PM — Post #7

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195590
June is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
June Bug Dingo
 

[Can be skipped until someone comes or she’s dismissed from duty :D]

@Nima + Harlow: https://imgur.com/gallery/hUNAo


Feb 18, 2018 07:29 PM — Post #8

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195669
Harlow is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Harlow Gail Bamsy
 

| gdi dingo you made me hunch over and laugh like a little hobgoblin at work

There hadn’t been so much rain in the wastes.  It was something new, to see that countenance in the rain.  And she felt small, walking alongside the older wolf.  She did not have many opportunities to feel small.

She did feel small.  Young.  She wanted all of this to go away, the rain to clear up, and for Nima Daniels and Harlow Gail to have some time to spend together.  Nima was putting so many things in the way right now.

She listened, black lips pulled tight, her gaze brushing back and forth between her profile and the ground where they walked.  A small army should make her giddy, and she was not.  Harlow guessed that what she had bargained for was a handful of wolves.  Still, it seemed enough to satisfy the empress.

“No trouble.  Sunfall is here, from hillside.”  And there was that rogue they’d found stuck in the mud, but that was neither here nor there (because we haven’t resolved it ICly yet :D). “Tahti, go to Rangers, say she bring help.”  A glance at Nima tried to convey everything there: her love for Tahti, her misgivings at the departure; her solid hope that she would return in time. 

So much easier to talk in looks.  She would miss that, without Tahti.

“How many Elliot have?”


Feb 19, 2018 09:03 AM — Post #9

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195711
Nima is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Nima Daniels fenshae
 

“Just himself and his bitch,” Nima said, settling to her haunches and regarding the other female thoughtfully. “And five puppies. I want to bring them home, to their family, if we can.”

But she had not missed the look on the female’s face, and she returned a soft smile. “Tahti seems kind. I am glad that you found each other. Do you think she might wish to come home with us, when it’s all over?”

She assumed, of course, that Harlow would be part of “us” now, whatever happened next.


Feb 19, 2018 12:05 PM — Post #10

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195814
Harlow is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Harlow Gail Bamsy
 

Harlow stood in front of her, head lowered.  Some of her deference, her adherence to respectful posture was carried over from their customs in the gang.  Some of it was inherent to Harlow, an expression of something so deep inside her it could only come out clearly in movement.

That deep something was a constant distraction from the reality that sat here with them.  So Elliot had only one follower left, and five children between them - they must be starving, with only two hunters for five growing bellies.

If Nima wanted them, Harlow hoped she had many hunters waiting at home.

Returning, she shook her head at the question, her face doubtful.  Tahti might, or she might not.  Harlow would not be able to be everything for her, because she was going to be everything for Nima.  And the mute had come to her covered in pack-smell.  “She go back, I think,” she said at last, her voice weighted with regret.

Her patient eyes returned to Nima, waiting.  Would she find more surface topics to scratch up, or would she finally fill Harlow in on what was moving her underneath?


Feb 19, 2018 11:53 PM — Post #11

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195816
Nima is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Nima Daniels fenshae
 

“That’s unfortunate. She seemed a good friend for you.”

She shifted her weight, and there was a certain heaviness now, an uncomfortable weight that settled in her now that she’d stopped moving. It was the way muscles grew heavy and aching after a long run, but of the soul; a deep exhaustion.

She did not want to be still. The darkness was waiting for her there, in the still places.

There were so many things to say, so much to talk about. She didn’t know where to begin, or if she could have the energy for it.

“I should not have left the gang. It was a mistake, all of it.”

Not that Kazeus had given her much choice, really. But he had also been right, in the end, about Elliot being a waste of time. Perhaps she should have listened to him. But would he have stopped at that? She doubted it. He was too much like Scotch, Kiel; a wolf whose reach exceeded his grasp.

God save her the wounded egos of fragile males.

She bit her tongue against other things she wanted to say. It would be easy to offload on the girl, quiet as she was. Easy to tell her everything.

But Nima had grown weary of confessions. They required energy she was no longer certain she had.

Tears that she did not want to shed pricked at the back of her eyes, and she averted her gaze, busying herself with studying the pattern of stone.


Feb 20, 2018 12:47 AM — Post #12

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195834
Harlow is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Harlow Gail Bamsy
 

Harlow sat, eventually, and licked her lips.  The whole silent confessor dynamic was not unknown to her, and Nima had always been especially prone.  She didn’t mind.  Listening always brought her more understanding than any attempts at speech.

Here, Nima was struggling, and here Harlow laid down in front of her, belly cold against the wet grass, and stretched out her legs in a beseeching, amicable roll.  Her head tilted heavily to one side, and she stared at her Empress from this new angle.  “We full mistakes.”  A gentle jibe.  You didn’t make it to middle age without a load of regrets trailing behind you.  It was no reason to fret.


Feb 20, 2018 02:41 AM — Post #13

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195916
Nima is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Nima Daniels fenshae
 

She snorted. Wasn’t that the truth.

“I’m plotting the murder of my son,” she said, after a long pause, and there was something like awe in her voice, something like disbelief.

It was strange, to say it out loud like that. It was strange to conceive of. All the plotting and scheming and machinations…that had been an enjoyable game, and a thing to keep her busy. She had come down from her mountain because she needed to do this in order to feel safe. She could not sit there, knowing that Elliot might be raising an army against her, knowing that the wolves of the valley might judge her for his deeds.

But she knew better, didn’t she?

For all that he was a villain—and he was a villain, certainly, she had the receipts, there was proof in a half-dozen instances—his greatest sin was criminal stupidity. And she would have him killed for that.

If only he had been smarter.

If only he had listened.

So many times she had tried to tell him what to do, had tried to lead him toward success, and he had not listened, and now she had to kill him. For her own safety.

If she told herself that enough times, she might start to believe it.

The tears threatening at the back of her eyes leaked out, but something edging dangerously close to hysteria was bubbling up in her chest, an unavoidable urge to laugh. It was just all so goddamn absurd.

She snorted, biting back the laughter even as it shook at her sides, strained her ribs.


Feb 20, 2018 02:24 PM — Post #14

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196013
Harlow is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Harlow Gail Bamsy
 

And that summed it up, didn’t it.  What a strange corner her empress had painted herself into.

Harlow’s flop had failed to really solve the situation, and she shifted back onto her breast, regarding Nima.  Cracking at the seams.  She didn’t know-

She didn’t know what her motivations were.  Supportive, selfish.  But she crawled forward, large and old and ungainly, pushing her front half up until she had enough height to wrap her cheek around the back of Nima’s broad shoulders.  She leaned, and the damp, airy space where their coats enmeshed began to grow warm.  Her chin pressed chastely onto Nima’s back.

Be weak, she thought to say, but wasn’t sure enough to speak it.  Last chance.


Feb 20, 2018 11:57 PM — Post #15

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