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pack creation | late winter

Name Player
Atlas Stormborn Jade
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At long last, winter’s icy grip on the valley was beginning to loosen. Rising temperatures had caused much of the snow on Falcon Rise to melt, leaving behind scattered patches of slush. Without that veneer of pristine white, its underlying appearance was now exposed: a vast expanse of rough, craggy earth. Only the hardiest forms of plant-life persisted, and much of what remained had been grazed down by the resident herbivores. The skeletal branches of the trees reached for the sky, pleading for sunlight, and dispersed among them were naked, brittle shrubs. Further back from the ridge, the forest of conifers remained stalwart, pin-straight and unwavering in spite of the harshness of the season.

But while the time for blizzards and flurries may have passed, winter was not yet done with the vale. The time had come for its death throes – for frigid gusts of wind that would claw at the barren landscape and rainstorms that would pelt the earth for days on end. So often the cold would give way gently, thawing in the first warm sunlight of spring and slipping away like melted snow down a hillside. A smooth transition from one season to the next, so subtle that one would hardly notice it before the first shoots of greenery began to appear. But not this time. This time, winter wouldn’t be going down without a fight.

Thunder rumbled in the distance, and Atlas cupped his ears towards its point of origin: somewhere to the west, across the windswept range. The young wolf stood at the edge of a steep cliff-face near the highest point of the Rise, where the elevation offered him an unhindered view of the valley below. The gently-rolling plains looked strangely stark now, no longer a winter wonderland incased in white. Atlas had weathered the season easily enough, yet he longed for the sea of grass that he’d first seen in the autumn. Even as he stood there gazing across the austere landscape, he found himself imagining the familiar, undulating waves.

It wouldn’t be long now, he thought as his bright eyes darted skyward, searching for the sun. A layer of thick, billowing clouds kept it hidden, but he knew it had to be on its way down by now, making its descent behind the cover of darkness. Another day would soon be gone, another day closer to spring. And here they were: their ragtag band of wolves had made it through the winter with little trouble at all, and they would emerge on the other side still united as one. Atlas had never set out to establish a pack there in the valley, but everything had fallen into place so naturally. The others looked up to him, looked to him for guidance. And without really giving it any thought himself, he’d come into the role of leader.

Of course, while they’d been settled in Falcon Rise for some months now, marking the territory as their own and claiming ownership of the land, they were not a pack in the official sense. There were unspoken rules that they all lived by, and they all had their own roles, but nothing was set in stone. And perhaps most crucial, they didn’t have a name – at least until now.

It hit Atlas rather abruptly, coming to him as he watched storm clouds growing on the horizon. It was a summer storm that had brought him closer to Poet and Valentina, when the trio ventured into the Firewing Brotherhood’s turf seeking shelter. More recently, he learned that Valentina had found her place with the Brotherhood wolves, which he found somewhat bittersweet… However, he was proud to hear that Poet seemed bent on following him wherever he went.

Then in autumn, when he and Inigo crossed paths with Oakley again, a coming storm had left them running across the plains with lightning at their backs. That was when the three of them had climbed the incline and reached the Rise for the first time. And when winter set in, it was between blizzards that Gulliver had appeared again, ready to join their motley crew.

Atlas had always preferred the calm of a clear sky… But life wasn’t all blue skies and sunshine. He realized now that the storms were what brought them together – both literal and figurative ones. They all had their own troubles: dark pasts to overcome, fears to conquer, mountains to climb. But all of that made their bond stronger and united them as one.

Lightning flashed, lighting the distant cloud bank in its brief but wicked glow. The sky growled again, and a smile broke through the pensive fog veiling the young wolf’s countenance. Just like that, he had it.

And with that in mind, Atlas suddenly felt impatient. As if he was standing on the very verge of something great. He could sense the air pressure as it dropped, and he could feel the heaviness that signaled impending rain. Somehow, he felt like this was the perfect moment – that now was finally the right time…

Thunder rumbled once more, and once the din faded into silence, Atlas scarcely waited a heartbeat. He lifted his head to the leaden sky and lifted his voice, calling out to summon the others to his location. Low-pitched and deep, his voice carried with ease over the expanse of the Rise and throughout the plains that lay below. He kept his head tilted back throughout, until his howl tapered off. Another bout of thunder followed close at its heels, chasing the call as it reverberated through the hillsides.

At long last, the time had come: the time to christen their pack and solidify its claim on Falcon Rise.

OOC – Okay, LET’S DO THIS~ We’ll wait for each of the members to fall in and post an entrance, but after that the posting order will become lax in order to keep things moving smoothly. Oh, and anyone else who wants to drop in is free to, of course!

Oct 24, 2015 01:44 PM

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[ Edited: Oct 24, 2015 06:49 PM by Atlas ]
Name Player
Poet Serethi Erin
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Hanging around the coast had been Poet’s life lately, but he soon found himself wandering back to the rise in search of Atlas. They parted ways after speaking with Nianki on the beach, the otherworldly blue bioluminescence still fresh in his mind, and the male was hoping to regroup with his friend one more time. He had a nice chat with Karevik back in the cave about their female troubles and, surprisingly, they related to each other far more than he originally expected. Now that he thought about it, he should have asked Karevik if he wanted to tag along back to the rise with him…

Large paws sunk into the grey-brown slush that was no longer snow and Poet smiled to himself. Spring definitely was almost here; it was only a matter of time now. His gaze drifted skyward to take in the cloud-cover that was dark enough to fool anyone into thinking it was close to nightfall. Poet wasn’t even sure if it was still technically daytime or not, but his thoughts were soon broken by the angry rumbling of thunder echoing off in the distance.

Flashes of light enveloped the sky almost simultaneously and the male forced his ears forward while his eyes took on the task of searching for shelter. A storm was rolling in and he didn’t want to get caught in it again. It reminded him of his entrance into Horizon, though, when he’d met Dairinn by the thin weird-tasting stream in the desert. He’d gotten himself caught in a storm during that time, as well. Strangely, it was just about a year ago now. Funny how certain things fall into place like that.

Aside from the lightning, thunder, and all other ingredients that typically combine to create a good storm, a voice also fused itself to the thick air.


Poet stopped in his tracks for a moment, trying to pick up the meaning behind his howl. It was definitely a summons, but for what? It didn’t sound like his friend was in trouble. Could it be…?

With a newfound burst of energy, Poet began clawing at the soggy earth in a mad dash in the direction of the call. He didn’t sound too far away, but Poet wanted to make sure he got there as soon as wolfanly(??)  possible. Excitement coursed through his body and the adrenaline made him not care that he might have been holding his breath as he ran. He would get there and hopefully he wouldn’t be the last to show up. The worth of their friendship was greater than the audacity to drag his feet.

Huffing and puffing his way to the rise, Poet caught sight of a figure at the very tippy top of the hill - the steepest hill around. Furrowing his brows with a look of determination, the male only hesitated briefly before engaging every reserve of power in his muscles to climb the steep hillside. It took him a little while, but he was no weakling. Thunder threatened from behind and lightning crashed all around in a dangerous display, but he didn’t falter even once. Soon enough he’d set paw on the same level his friend was on, and he smiled wide.

His tail waved gently to and fro behind him as he approached Atlas. “Hey, bud,” he greeted casually, though a frenzy of emotion threatened to explode from him any second. The big bear-wolf definitely looked like a king atop Falcon Rise. Poet thought that from now on he’d refer to Atlas as the Bear King. It was fitting in all the best possible ways.

“I guess this is actually happening, huh?” There was a sense of pride behind his words. He never would have thought this day would come so soon, and honestly Poet wasn’t even sure where he would fall into this pack. He would be happy with any place in it, regardless of the existence of a title.

His pale blue eyes danced around in an anticipatory manner, curious to see the rest of the wolves who were to make up the numbers of this pack. He figured Athena had to show up at some point, but other than that he had no clue who the others were. As far as he was concerned, it was probably Poet who was the outcast here. From what it sounded like, Atlas had been hanging with the others here quite some time before they reunited with each other.

Either way, he was sure he was going to like what he saw.

Oct 24, 2015 03:39 PM — Post #1

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Gulliver is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Gulliver Rummage Raylee


The agenda of Gulliver’s day had been a simple one; stuff his face with the rabbit he’d caught, curl up in a copse of trees and dry brush, and snooze the storm away. Grey dappled skies and the gentle roll of thunder had always been a formula that put the bloke right to sleep. And with nothing else to do; a good ol fashion nap seemed the perfect pass time.

That was, until the howl of his comrade chimed into the chorus of thunder and lightning. Gulliver let out a loud snort as he jerked awake, his ear cocked the side awkwardly as he forced his sleepy eyes wide open. There was no mistaking the purpose of Atlas’ call; the time had come to gather. And, as Gulliver pulled his slight frame from the ground, a dopey smile painted itself across his lips.

The timing was impeccable. With the snows shying away to the warmth of a new season, and the land beginning to flourish once more, there was no better instance than this moment. Spring was time of regrowth and new beginnings. For things to be reborn and start a new. They had spent all winter growing close and establishing a home; now was the time to let everyone in the valley know. And Gulliver was all too ready for it.

As his slender, lanky legs carried him across the hilltops, the bloke could hardly contain the emotions that threatened to overflow. The journey, thankfully, was a short and forgiving one. In no time, he caught sigh of his companion’s silhouette laying stark against the turmoil of the sky above. A flash of light from withing the swollen clouds revealed the form of another; was it Inigo, or Oakley? No, it seemed different. New.

Gulliver hurried forth to scale the steep hillside, his tongue lolling to the side and his sides heaving. Only when he reached level ground with the two did their muddled figures become more defined. Atlas was standing there, head high, with all the grandeur deserving of a leader. And beside him, an unfamiliar face. For a moment, Gulliver was wary; would this turn out to be similar to the last time, with that snarky girl? Soon enough, though he gathered that the relationship Atlas had with this strange male was much different. A friend.

“Lo!” Gulliver barked, his face twisted into a stupid grin. He slowed as he reached the two, tail wagging erradically behind him. 

Oct 24, 2015 04:49 PM — Post #2

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Name Player
Inigo Wynter
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The rain didn’t bother him. It never had, though given the choice the dark boy would take comfort and warmth over a cold, wet night. In the end, it was only rain.

But the thunder made him nervous. Each flash in the sky made him flinch in anticipation of the boom that followed it, making his shoulders hunch and his body lower closer to the ground. He moved across the grasslands like a slinking cat, as though trying to avoid the notice of some larger predator. In a way, he was. Images of his flight from Taiyae flashed in his mind, brief stabs of memory that struck him much like the lightning streaking across the sky. Once, he might’ve gone to Atlas or one of the others, seeking company to distract himself from the storm, but Inigo had stopped that behavior quite some time ago. Although he knew that Atlas would not turn him away, it seemed… cowardly, somehow, to be afraid of something that he knew would not hurt him. So he had learned to weather the storms on his own in an effort to rid himself of his dependence on others… and to attempt to shake his foolish fear.

He wasn’t quite so sure it was working.

Inigo pushed his way up the side of the rise, taking a pathway that was relatively easy to navigate; he didn’t want to misstep and take a tumble down the steep hill. That would be dangerous as well as humiliating, given how steep the rise was on this side. He wasn’t heading to the top, however. As much as he wanted to brave the storm, to tell himself that the crack of thunder was not the same as the weapons that the humans used to kill his pack… today was not the day that he conquered that fear. Inigo was going to slink back to his small shelter tonight, and ride out the storm where at least he knew he’d have some shelter from the oncoming storm.

That was when he heard it. Inigo raised his head at the sound of the deep, booming call, his dull gaze shifting to one of surprise. It wasn’t unusual for Atlas to call to them to hunt or simply to gather and socialize… but this was different. Inigo paused for a moment, twitching once more in response to the thunder. But the desire to reach shelter wasn’t quite so urgent now, and Inigo started to move upward, clawing his way up the steep side of the ridge and making his way toward the top. He’d known that Atlas intended to start something here… the big wolf had confirmed it not long ago out on the range, when they’d been chasing the herd of bison. It seemed like only a short time ago, though Inigo hadn’t brought it up with him again. He hadn’t ever mentioned it, but Atlas hadn’t forgotten about it. And now was the time for them to gather, his call proclaimed. It seemed too good to be true…

But his ears did not deceive him. Inigo pushed himself harder, legs propelling him upward in powerful strokes as he made his way to the top of the rise, using the quickest route he knew- straight up the side of the ridge. It took him a few moments to climb to the top, but when he finally did make his his way to level ground, he spotted first Atlas, who stood on the far side of the ridge- and then the others. Inigo hadn’t taken too long to get here, but it seemed Gulliver had made it there before him- and a wolf Inigo had yet to meet. He knew that Atlas had some other friends around… and he doubted this wolf was Valentina.

Hello,” he said as he approached, a general greeting for everyone nearby. Be noticed that Oakley was not present… would she be here? Would Atlas’s sister show up? He supposed he would have to wait to see, though he saw no reason that they would disappear now.

You must be Poet,” he said as he made his way closer to the gathering, looking curious. Inigo smiled slightly in spite of himself. He was happy, but he had a difficult time showing it in front of those with whom he was not familiar, tending to be more reserved when in unfamiliar company. But if Poet was here, chances were he was joining their little band… and Inigo ought to make an effort to start off on the right foot.

Oct 24, 2015 09:20 PM — Post #3

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Oakley is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Oakley Mia

OOC—I was so excited, and wrote a kickass post…and lost it. *wails* But I’m still excited! I promise!

Oakley didn’t know what had possessed her to say yes to Atlas and Inigo. The moment she heard Atlas’ call seep across Falcon Rise, she knew what it meant, and just like that, she could think of a million and ten reasons why her joining his pack had been a stupid idea.

For starters: she was the reason her birthpack, in its entirety, was wiped out.

It was true that she’d picked on zero hints on the ultimate presence of humans since she’d come to these lands. It was true that there were a number of reasons why they’d showed up back then, and maybe (just maybe) it had nothing to do with her. It was even true that there was no guarantee that history would repeat itself, so living life like it would was a little ridiculous. Yet while Atlas and Inigo had done a great job at convincing her that it was all fine and dandy and they accepted her dark, twisty story, she had serious doubts that the rest of the pack would be as understanding if it ever came up. It wasn’t exactly dinner conversation, was it? “My last pack? Oh, golly. I killed them all. Would someone pass the moose innards?”

Next: she wasn’t exactly the easiest wolf to get along with. She wore her emotions out on the tips of her fur, for everyone to see. Generally, it made wolves uncomfortable. Even if the boys had started to expect her high highs and low lows, and even her angry angrys, there was nothing that said she’d been so welcomed by any outside wolves coming in. What if all the new wolves who want to join get one dose of all she stood for, tucked tail and ran off? What if her tantrums made her the laughing stock of the pack? “Look at fluffy ducky getting angry,” was what her siblings would say when it happened, and it made her feel a way she never wanted to feel again…

Still. Fear was never a good enough reason not to do something, right? And for the millions of reasons her brain could think up in an effort to tell her not to go meet them at this crucial moment, her heart conjured up a thousands reasons to keep going.

So she did. She bypassed puddles of slush she would have otherwise loved to splash into. She ignored the threats that thunder rolled out overhead. And when both Atlas and Inigo came into view (along with two others she didn’t know) she felt her heart beat quicker.

“It’s about time,” was what she offered as a hello, coming up beside Atlas and wagging her tail like a crazy pendulum between the inner part of her legs. It was in rhythm with the quick excitement that was rushing through her veins. Then, glancing toward Inigo, she bypassed the wolves she didn’t know as Poet and Gulliver to tuck herself protectively behind him. Despite being at odds with him, he was the only other wolf she knew who wouldn’t be busy making speeches tonight.

Still, she offered a tentative smile at both other males as thunder cracked across the sky.

Oct 26, 2015 03:15 PM — Post #4

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Name Player
Atlas Stormborn Jade
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After sounding the call to gather, Atlas turned away from the edge of the ridge and paced off a little ways. At first he plopped down on his haunches with the intention of sitting down to wait, but he soon found that he absolutely couldn’t stay still. He heaved himself onto his feet again, ambled back to take a peek across the plains, and then promptly turned and meandered back to where he’d been. He went through this process several times – up and down, back and forth – for roughly ten minutes. Then, at long last, he glimpsed the first of his allies coming up the Rise.

Atlas couldn’t hold back the big, dopey grin that spread across his maw the moment he saw Poet’s familiar face. When the two of them parted ways once again at the coast, he hadn’t been sure if his old buddy would want to join him in his pack-building efforts. Sure, he’d fully supported his ideals and believed he would make a good leader, but… Atlas hadn’t wanted to pressure him. After all, Poet had a nomad’s soul. Or so he thought

Whatever the case, he was here now. And as he reached level ground with him, he greeted him eagerly. Atlas’ grin turned a bit sheepish, but ultimately he drew in a breath and nodded.

“It’s happening alright,” he replied, and it looked like he might say something more – but at that moment Gulliver and Inigo appeared within moments of one another.

“Guys!” Atlas called to the two of them, tail flagging behind him like a joyful banner. Gulliver looked fit to explode at any moment, and while Inigo was considerably less animated than the other wolf his age, Atlas could see that he was happy too. He just had a… Well, more subtle way of showing it.

He looked to each of them in turn – and then to Poet again, as Inigo addressed him. He’d told them all about Poet and Valentina bringing his sister to the Rise, but all of them had gone their own way before his pack mates had a chance to meet them. Valentina had no doubt returned to the Brotherhood territory, and Athena… He wasn’t sure whether or not she would make an appearance after what had happened between them. But Poet was back again, and the others would have a chance to get acquainted with his old pal. Atlas was beaming as he watched the three of them. It looked like everything was falling into place…

And with Oakley bringing up the rear, everyone he’d expected to come was now present. She looked every bit as excited as Gulliver, and as she came wiggling up towards him, Atlas flashed her a wry look.

“Better late than never, huh?” He joked, although the words had hardly left his mouth before Oakley sidled over to Inigo and ducked behind him. Atlas’ brow creased slightly at the sight of her hiding from the unfamiliar wolves, but he tried not to let himself worry too much. Hopefully after introductions were out of the way, everything would smooth over… Speaking of which, now that everyone was present and accounted for, he’d probably do well to get things started, wouldn’t he?

“Okay, so…”

Atlas shifted his long, tree-trunk legs awkwardly, angling himself so that he faced all of them more or less equally. Then he cleared his throat.

“I know this has been a long time coming, but it’s time to make this thing official. Poet. Gulliver. Inigo. Oakley.” His bright gaze hopped from one wolf to the next as he called their names in turn. “Since we’ve been making the rules up as we go, I think all of you already know – at least to some extent – what we’re about here. What we expect of one another. So I don’t really know what I’m supposed to say at a moment like this, but I feel like I should state our purpose as… Well, a formality. That seems like the right thing to do.”

By this point his smile had faded by a few degrees, replaced by a more appropriately serious look, but his expression was no less warm.

“I believe that everyone has their own strengths: talents and abilities that they can offer to the pack. I’m not just talking about hunting or fighting, either. We won’t turn anyone away just because they aren’t physically strong or skilled… Those things can be developed with time and training. And even those that others might consider “weak” have something to offer, whether they’re aware of it or not. Our goal will be to help each wolf find their strength. Together, we will stand strong. And we’ll stand for what’s right.”

Thunder rumbled again, louder now as the storm drew closer, and Atlas paused until it faded before he continued.

“Virtue and valor,” he added simply. “That’s our code.”

With that, he looked around the gathering, searching for understanding and support in the eyes of his friends. It was a (thankfully) more concise version of what he’d told Poet and Nianki that day at the beach – and he could only hope it would be as well-received now as it was then. He had much more to say still: things to explain, ranks to assign, gratitude to share… But he wanted to wait to see what the others thought first. Standing there giving a speech, truly taking up the mantle of leader… He still felt so awkward.

He tried not to let that show, though. And he managed to hold himself with a measure of relaxed confidence as he awaited feedback from the others.

Oct 27, 2015 03:48 PM — Post #5

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Name Player
Poet Serethi Erin
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The beaming smile that appeared on Atlas’s face made Poet’s smile widen even more in return. He was glad to see he was wanted here, especially since he’d never actually straightforwardly told Atlas he wanted in on his pack thing. After their conversation with Nianki, they simply decided to just part ways again without saying much of anything. He didn’t know how Atlas felt at the time, but Poet at least didn’t want to straight up ask Atlas to be part of what he was doing here. So they left on a more or less awkward note, each tangled with their own thoughts and wishes.

But they were here now, and Poet decided to just show up and see what would happen. He hadn’t met any other other wolves that were about to gather around at the top of the hill under the concert of the storm, but he hoped he’d be welcomed to some degree regardless. However, when one wolf showed up, he seemed to already know who Poet was.

“You must be Poet.”

His blue gaze whirled around to meet the mismatched eyes of a wolf who called him out. His eyes narrowed suspiciously, but still good-naturedly, as he studied the dark brown wolf with an interesting set of eyes. “Yes…? And you…” he hesitated for a moment. Not a single name came to mind no matter how hard he tried to think of one. But suddenly he remembered the name of a wolf Atlas told to him and Valentina back in the Brotherhood territory all those seasons ago. A wolf Atlas had met in the hills, and the name almost forced itself to the front of Poet’s memory bank. “You must be Inigo,” he said with conviction though his eyes widened as he watched the wolf, waiting to see if there was any trace of a hint that he was wrong.

But then his attention was captured by another wolf who had apparently already made his presence known, as well - a lighter-colored male who was also younger than Poet. He seemed friendly enough and Poet wagged his tail gently and smiled at him without a clue in the world as to who he was. Still, these were Atlas’s friends and Poet wasn’t going to let any awkwardness get in the way.

Lastly, yet another young wolf appeared and joined their little pow wow. Rather than greeting everyone else, she immediately retreated behind Atlas and Poet watched her curiously. She still smiled, though, which was good enough for him. She was probably just painfully shy, and there was nothing wrong with that.

As thunder and lightning battled across the sky, he heard Atlas speak up during the intermissions. His friend was quick to get to the point, and began by introducing all the wolves to each other. Gulliver, Inigo, and Oakley. He made sure to keep each name tucked away in his mind for future encounters. He also had a big, stupid grin on his face, mostly because he was happy knowing he’d gotten Inigo’s name right. The smile remained as he continued listening to Atlas, absorbing each word that rumbled from his lungs.

And he nodded at everything, agreeing with everything.

At the end, Atlas revealed their “code”: virtue and valor. Poet felt humbled by that suddenly, knowing full well that life in this pack would actually be enjoyable and fitting for Poet - unlike his natal pack. Normally he’d be hesitant on pack life because of the bad taste left in his mouth from the Serethi pack, but right here and now, he’d never felt more at home.

Oct 27, 2015 04:14 PM — Post #6

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Gulliver is currently Inactive. Activate? Inactive
Name Player
Gulliver Rummage Raylee

The ground was electric beneath his toes, alive with the energy that flowed across the hilltop. Atlas seemed to be radiating exuberance, his gigantic body sending shock waves of the stuff through the muggy air. The stranger beside him was alive with equal vivacity. It wasn’t but only a few moments longer that Inigo arrived, bringing with him an air of uncharacteristic enthusiasm that only amounted to the electricity. Gulliver’s hairs stood on end, his body practically quivering with anticipation.

With eager ears, he implored on Inigo and the stranger’s brief conversation. Poet was, apparently, the name of the guy. Quite obviously, a friend of Atlas’ that had either never been mentioned, or one who’s name Gulliver had never been paying enough attention to remember. It was safe to say this was the other friend Atlas had traveled with in the early days, along with Valentina.

At the thought of the girl, a figurative light bulb all but combusted above his head. He had promised to send Atlas her good tidings! However, before he could form the words, the arrival of another threw him off. A girl. More specifically; a pretty girl. All thoughts of anything else dissipated immediately from Gulliver’s brain.

He watched with doe-eyed astonishment as the she-wolf crested the hill. She moved across the ground with such fluidity, that Gulliver could have sworn she was floating. She was pretty average size for a female, a little on the lean side but in good measure. Her pelt sat in millions of fluffy grey kinks all over her body; dew from the air around them clung in beads across its surface. She was nothing like he’d ever seen before. Like she’d walked out of a dream and somehow stumbled into their rag-tag assembly.  The bloke gulped hard against a sudden knot in his throat. Who. Was. That?

Atlas had mentioned he and Inigo had hung around with another buddy in the early winter. However, when Gulliver joined the gang, they’d seemed to disappear. He’d caught lingering scents a few times, but the snow had done well to cover up the details. Now that she was standing there before him, hovering close to Atlas, it clicked that this was the buddy. How come they never told him they’d been hanging with an angel?

Gulliver tried his best to ignore the flash of heat that flushed across his cheeks when she looked at him. He dipped his head in a half-nod, feigning placidity the best he could. He tried not to let his gaze linger; that would be creepy; but it was so hard when she was so pretty. It was easy when Atlas spoke up, seemingly intent on getting the ball rolling.

That was; until Atlas said her name. Oakley. Gulliver glanced over at the girl again, doing what he could not to gawk. Her name fit her so well that it nearly knocked him off his feet. Casual as he could, Gulliver pulled himself to his rump, eyeing the girl for a moment longer to focus on what Atlas was saying. It was happening; the pack was coming together.
Gulliver beamed at every word that came out of the giant’s mouth. Each wolf had a place in the world; everyone had a job to do. Brain or brawn. Big or small. It mattered little in the value of the wolf. What mattered; was integrity. What mattered; was what Atlas said himself. Virtue, and valor.

Atlas looked to them, then. A consensus on what he’d said. Gulliver wasted no time in nodding dipping his head broadly when their eyes met, a painfully large grin stretching across his muzzle. Behind him, the bloke’s tail wavered fervently. He liked the Atlas. One that took charge and spoke to them not as just a friend, but as a leader, too.

Oct 29, 2015 08:38 PM — Post #7

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Name Player
Inigo Wynter
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Poet turned to regard him in a manner that would have seemed almost accusatory had it not been for the broad smile on his muzzle. He confirmed that Inigo was right, and then went on to make his own guesses. Inigo only smiled a bit wider to confirm the wolf’s guess and then moved to sit down, watching Atlas. He was obviously excited, greeting them all enthusiastically and looking just as pleased as a wolf could possibly be. Not even Inigo could remain dour-faced at that… Atlas did have a way of bringing out his sense of humor, and Inigo chuckled lightly at the older wolf’s display.

They didn’t have to wait long for the last of Atlas’s band- Oakley appeared just a moment after Inigo had, calling out a good natured quip as Atlas before quietly moving around behind him, using Inigo as a barrier between her and the other two males. He turned his head to regard her out of the corner of his eye, his brows raised slightly. She was smiling, so there didn’t seem to be anything amiss with her for the time being. He went to look back at Atlas… but he noticed the was that Gulliver was eyeing Oakley. He was wide-eyed and in some apparent distress, as far as Inigo could tell. There was no way he could be nervous around Oakley… was there? Had he heard of her erratic temperament?

Inigo couldn’t tell. It wasn’t important, just at the moment. He turned back to Atlas, who seemed ready to begin his speech- it seemed everyone he’d been expecting was present. It wasn’t a lot, but it was a comfortable number, in Inigo’s opinion. Enough to keep the rise safe from any vagabonds that might come prowling around, looking to start trouble. Once everyone had been introduced, Atlas started his speech in earnest, adopting a look of gravitas (or as near as Atlas was likely to get) that was more fitting of the momentous occasion.

And it was important. Though they’d been living as a loose coalition for a while now, there was something about having the true bonds of a pack that was more important to him than Inigo had first thought it would be. He’d lost everything his first time around, and he was determined to help build something in this valley that would last. Inigo let his gaze slip away from Atlas momentarily, looking toward the others as he made his speech… they all seemed equally pleased. Inigo had never thought of himself as physically weak, but he’d been rather unstable after he had seen that white wolf die in front of him. The broken, pitiful creature had been an echo of himself, a promise of what would happen to Inigo if he continued on as he was- alone, dejected, and afraid of the world around him. 

Inigo’s eyes squeezed shut at the rumble of thunder, but at least he kept from cowering as his mind went back to the day he’d met Atlas again on the coastline. He wouldn’t be alive today without the wolf’s help. Atlas had saved Inigo in spite of himself… and Inigo was eternally grateful for that. And if he could help others the way Atlas had helped him, then it was his duty to at least try. He didn’t know how much difference he could make- no one would ever call him charismatic. His presence paled in comparison to Atlas. But he could do his best to live by the pack’s code: virtue, and valor.

It’s a noble calling, Atlas,” he said, dipping his muzzle. Everyone else had remained silent, and perhaps Inigo should have held his tongue as well, but he wanted to let Atlas know how he felt. That he was on board, and that he believed in the wolf’s message, even if it was with that small, inadequate statement. The look of earnest fervor in his eyes was more than enough to attested to how he felt.

Nov 02, 2015 11:04 PM — Post #8

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Oakley Mia

Oakley had taken a minute or so to size these new wolves up.

One of them was older and large—like Atlas—with distinct dark streaks in his fur that reminded her of a storm rolling in. And the other…well, she caught him staring at her, and instantly heat rose up to her cheeks and her ears flattened.

Great. A gawker. Was it so much to ask that she be around wolves who didn’t think she was the funniest looking thing in the world?

She wanted to flash her teeth at him, let him know she was on top him, but Atlas spoke up at just the right time. She looked away from the young male then, and focused in on what her buddy was saying. It didn’t take long for her embarrassment to be replaced by sheer excitement again.

Ah. So it was Poet and Gulliver, their names. She shot Gulliver a sidelong glance again, before giving up on the situation entirely. He could think whatever the hell he wanted, she supposed, as long as he didn’t call her Ducky, Quacker, or any of the terrible nicknames she’d grown up with.

Atlas continued to explain what this new pack of theirs would be about, and Oakley found herself nodding along. None of it surprised her…not after having the talks she’d had with Inigo and Atlas all those months ago. But it just felt good to hear him announce it on such official grounds. This thing they’d dreamed about? It was happening. Right now.

Virtue and valor. Such a typical guy code. But, Oakley did think of herself as one of the boys—and given that she was the only female in this ragtag group, she would accept it with quiet praise. She grinned as Atlas glanced around in his pause, thunder clapping its support.

“It’s a noble calling, Atlas,” Inigo said, and Oakley practically bounced from the shiver that ran threw her.

“Yeah, noble. Get to the good stuff, Atty!” she chirruped. “What are we calling ourselves?”

Her paws danced in front of her, the howl bubbling up inside of her. She wanted to know what she would sing out. She wanted to know what she was going to celebrate. Because despite all those reasons to be afraid of this, she was here, and that meant she was in this full-heartedly, and she knew that both Atlas and Inigo knew that.

Nov 07, 2015 06:44 AM — Post #9

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Atlas Stormborn Jade
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Atlas hadn’t missed the way Gulliver was making eyes at Oakley, but he did his best to pretend that he hadn’t noticed. For one, he didn’t want to interrupt what was obviously a very important moment for all of them. But perhaps more than that, he didn’t want to call attention to the boy at the risk of embarrassing him. Of course, that didn’t mean he’d gotten away with it by any means. While now wasn’t the time for a guy-to-guy talk, Atlas definitely planned to pursue it later on, assuming he could get the younger male alone for a minute.

For now, though… The subject of the pack was at hand. And judging by the looks on their faces, Atlas felt certain that his words had resonated with his friends. When Inigo spoke up, he received the compliment with a gentle bow of his head. Of course, it wasn’t long afterwards that Oakley piped up to make her feelings known. And while she agreed with Inigo’s sentiments, she was more than ready for what she considered the “good stuff.” Namely, she wanted to know what they were going to call themselves.

“Geez!” Atlas exclaimed, puffing out his chest in an exaggerated show. “I’m getting to that part. …I was trying to set the mood here.”

He put on his best pout as he glanced Oakley’s way, but it rapidly dissolved into a kind of wry-looking smile. Eventually, his bright gaze came to encompass the whole of the gathering again as he resumed the proceedings.

“I’ve seen special skills and qualities in all of you. Because of that, you’ll all be considered the Wardens of our pack – of this land. We’ll train together and help one another. All of us need to strive for our best if we expect to make an impact on others. Speaking of which, any new recruits will become Apprentices until they’ve proven themselves worthy of the rank of Warden. If someone wants to offer their allegiance, send them to me: the Titan.”

Atlas squared his shoulders for effect as he announced his own rank, although there was still a sense of sheepishness to his presence. It felt kind of awkward to be taking up what he thought might seem like an impressive-sounding title… And yet somehow he felt oddly empowered. Despite his lingering feelings of inadequacy and doubt, the name “Titan” made him feel strong. It made him feel like the leader he needed to be, for all of them.

Nevertheless, Atlas was quick to move on: skipping straight to the “good stuff” that Oakley was so eager to hear about.

“We may be small now, but one day the whole valley will know our name.” Pausing, he flashed a smile. “The Stormborn Alliance.”

Thunder continued to rumble in the background as he spoke, but soon enough the sound of his own voice joined in. With his head tilted back to the sky, Atlas offered a song to the dark clouds above, the deep timbre of his howl intermingling with the din of the oncoming tempest. They would have to seek shelter soon enough. But in this moment, in the calm before the storm, they could lift their voices as one for the first time.

Nov 07, 2015 09:28 PM — Post #10

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Poet Serethi Erin
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|| Short, but mehs.

Everyone more or less added in their two cents as they waited for the one thing they all wanted to hear – the name of the pack. Poet knew it would come soon enough, and didn’t bother to rush it out of Atlas. He wanted Atlas to take his time and announce it in all the glory Poet knew it would consist of. His head bobbed in approval of Inigo’s noting of Atlas’s noble calling, and the female was clearly distressed with impatience as she prodded Atlas about their name.

Poet’s eyes bounced from one wolf to the next, studying each one more closely as to silently get to know his new pack mates. Once Oakley pushed the name topic more aggressively, his blue eyes slipped right back to Atlas. He waited silently, patiently, for his next words.

And soon they came. And they were glorious, indeed.

The Stormborn Alliance. The name had what felt like mini jolts of electricity coursing through Poet’s body. The name was perfect. And what was even more perfect was that each wolf had the same rankings. Nobody was higher than anyone else – aside from Atlas, of course. Poet thought that was very humble. And very much Atlas.

As their Titan raised his head to the sky and lent his voice to the heavens, Poet didn’t skip a beat to join in. His own voice intertwined with the rest of the sounds, though his wasn’t as deep as Atlas. One by one they would each join in a chorus of voices to be sent across the hills with the storm. Soon enough, everyone would know this rise as belonging to the wolves of the Alliance.

Nov 07, 2015 10:03 PM — Post #11

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Gulliver Rummage Raylee

ahhhhh sorry for this wait

Although Gulliver might not have thought the moment called for comments, Inigo had offered his own. No matter, though; they had been well delivered, and certainly accurate. The bloke might have even seconded the notion, had it not been for the most beautiful sound chiming out against the nearing roar of thunder.

Gulliver stood, with his lower jaw cracked open, doe-eyed as he looked toward the source of the noise. Oakley. He hadn’t even registered what she’d said. The song-like jingle to her voice was too captivating to ignore. How could one not only look beautiful, but sound beautiful as well. Oh, Gods above, he shouldn’t stare so much.

As Atlas spoke up in a hearty reply to Oakley’s comment, Gulliver jerked his gaze away. Any more staring, and others would start to notice. Or worse; she would start to notice! Drawing in a gaping breath through his nostrils, the bloke forced his focus onto Atlas’ next words.

And wouldn’t you know it; they made him forget all about the girl. Well, mostly. Each of them were assigned the same rank; Warden. Every wolf that stood here today, tiny specks beneath a mottled, bellowing sky, were equal. And Atlas was their Titan.

Gulliver beamed as the thought processed. After months and months of traveling alone, rejected from his pack by an overbearing father; he’d found it. A place that accepted him. Wolves that saw him as an equal; someone that has something to give, rather than a burden. How about them apples.

And together; they would call themselves the Stormborn Alliance. Bonds born of rain and lightning. A force greater than a storm itself.

Gratification swelled in his chest as it ballooned outward. His ears perked as Atlas’ baritone voice filled the sticky air with song, harmonizing with the resounding roars of the thunder. Not a second later, Poet joined. An impossible grin spread across Gulliver’s face as he tilted his chin high toward the mottled sky, his eyes squeezing shut as he married his falsetto song with those of his Allies.

Nov 10, 2015 09:37 PM — Post #12

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Inigo Wynter
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Oakley asked the question that Inigo was truly curious about in her own impatient way, his head tilting to the side slightly as he waited for Atlas to respond. The older wolf’s air of gravitas was quickly deflated, and Inigo smirked at the display… but it would be a moment longer before he learned of the pack’s name. Atlas begun by praising them all, and though Inigo thought it was such a simple thing to say to another, that everyone had their own skills and merits… when Atlas spoke the words, he couldn’t help but feel the wolf’s sincerity. Atlas knew it to be true, and Inigo was willing to believe it.

Then, Atlas told them all what they would be called: Wardens. Inigo repeated the term quietly under his breath, testing it out and trying to get a feel for it. They weren’t warriors, or soldiers, as those in his mother’s pack had been called. Nothing so militaristic. They were Wardens… guardians. Protectors of their land and of one another. And Atlas would lead them as Titan of the pack. It was certainly a powerful-sounding title, and Inigo raised his brows a bit, grinning slightly. Not exactly a subtle moniker, but… well, he supposed that leaders weren’t supposed to be subtle or unobtrusive. It would certainly make a statement when Atlas introduced himself to others as Titan of the pack. Inigo watched the wolf carefully, seeing as he adopted a more striking stance… and it might have intimidated a wolf who didn’t know him well. But Inigo was sure that everyone present could see the humility in Atlas’s expression even as he officially proclaimed himself as leader of the pack. 

Although Atlas was the wolf he was truly closest to, and Oakley a distant second, Inigo thought he might be able to form a connection with the rest of his packmates… at the very least, it seemed that none of them would be in a hurry to desert the pack, not when they had made the effort to commit to what Atlas was doing here. Perhaps he’d been wrong before in not making an effort to reach out to the others. He would have to, though… if they were to truly become a pack, Inigo would have to try.

...Well, that was a thought for later, anyway. Atlas continued on, pausing for effect before stating the name of the pack: the Stormborn Alliance. Inigo’s ears perked forward at that, his eyes going a bit wide as he considered the name and its significance.

Thunder boomed in the distance, and Inigo hunched his shoulders and closed his eyes, gritting his teeth. It was almost as though Atlas named them in defiance of the storms that Inigo feared so much. He sniffed, digging his claws into the soil and throwing his head back to add his voice to the others, his voice loud and strong and almost defiant.

Nov 13, 2015 11:00 PM — Post #13

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Oakley Mia

“Geez! I’m getting to that part. …I was trying to set the mood here.”

Oakley shook her head at that. Such a drama queen, she wanted to say, but despite how she gave him a hard time, she understood the levity of this moment for him and didn’t want to take that away.

He went on to explain that they would all be Wardens. That took her by surprise—that they would all share in the same “rank”, so to speak. If there was one thing she remembered all too clearly from her birth pack, was that the ranks had been a coveted thing. By simply keeping the ranks as new wolves and pack wolves, Atlas was already removing unforeseen stress and fights and squabbles.

This…this was why she was here; this show of solidarity among the wolves of their pack was a testament to the kind of wolf Atlas was. And in that instant, she felt a wave of affection she had never, ever felt for another wolf before.

“If someone wants to offer their allegiance, send them to me: the Titan,” he continued, and Oakley couldn’t deny that that was a heavy sounding alpha rank if she’d ever heard one before. And then….and then he said it. “We may be small now, but one day the whole valley will know our name. The Stormborn Alliance.”

And as if it was timed, thunder cracked and Atlas howled.

One by one, each wolf present threw his head back and joined the chorus. Oakley watched each one: she heard the lighter notes of Poet’s song, and saw how Gulliver (that was his name, right?) squeezed his eyes shut when he added his higher notes to the pile. And beside her, Inigo joined in after his slight stiffen to the thunder, his voice loud and strong, riding along Atlas’ tone.

And she realized…

These were her boys. And she was happy as hell to be here.

She sang—and it felt amazing. Her own voice was the only feminine voice in the pile, but it was low and raspy, and it curled around the others with only love for this new family of hers.

Nov 16, 2015 05:02 PM — Post #14

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Atlas Stormborn Jade
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All around him, their voices filled the air: the voices of his pack… his friends. Poet. Gulliver. Inigo. Oakley. Atlas felt his heart swell with pride as each of them joined in. One by one, their songs intertwined with his own, until their chorus could be heard loud and clear over the steady rumble of thunder. While he knew that this act meant nothing in the grand scheme of things, for the five of them it was like the sealing of a pact. They had banded together for so long, but now… Now the bond was made official. From this day forward, they were Stormborn.

Their song carried on until their howls tapered off, and the din of thunder reclaimed the air. The wind had grown stronger now, cutting through the grass in razor-sharp gusts as the storm approached. Dark clouds moved across the sky as if they were in fast-forward, rapidly blotting out what was left of the light. And in the distance, he could see sheets of rain appearing as the bottom fell out. It was close now. Within another minute or two, it would be right on top of them.

Behind him, a white-hot fork of lightning suddenly streaked through the clouds. The resulting glow lit the entire area, if only for a millisecond, before the hills grew dim again. Thunder followed in its wake, almost deafening this time. As he turned to the west, the Titan’s thick fur rippled in the wind, and his bright eyes regarded the coming storm with a stone-faced but somehow regal look…

And then he promptly whirled around and set off in a light-footed trot.

“O-kay, let’s go, meeting adjourned~” he announced hurriedly as he brushed past the others, headed towards the cover of the trees. After a few steps he turned to glance back over one shoulder and grinned stupidly.

“Stormborn or not, I don’t think any of us are lightning-proof.”

OOC – Gonna wrap this up here, if y’all don’t mind. :D I’m about to send in the info, so the Stormborn Alliance should be official very soon~!

Nov 16, 2015 06:48 PM — Post #15

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[ Edited: Nov 17, 2015 02:22 PM by Atlas ]
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