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From Tree to Lake

13555
Name Player
Los Strakh
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A curious thought ran through Los’ mind as we traveled. Where was he going? Why was he just wondering this frozen land looking for something that he doesn’t even know what it looks like? Would he ever find this strange place? Lost in this train of thought, Los casually walks right into a tree, snapping him out of his thoughts. Almost as if planned by some divine tree spirit, a partly frozen lake glimmers in the light just to his right which creates a smile on Los’ face. “Maybe this is where I was meant to find. It’s nice and cold, I’m sure there’s plenty of fish somewhere in the water, almost seems to good to be true but here it is.” Los claims aloud for anyone to hear despite being alone.
  After taking a seat and scratching an itch on the shore, curiosity starts to invade his mind. He’s heard of wolves howling but he never understood why they do it. His old travel companion told him only to howl if absolutely necessary and that’s it. Not why only if necessary nor what would happen if he just howled. The more he thought about it, the more strange it seemed. A grown wolf like himself never having howled before couldn’t be normal so after looking around for some time, he tilted his head back and howled until he ran out of air. Immediately after he just chuckled and started to roll around in the snow listening to the echo fade away unaware of any danger he might have just introduced himself to.


Jul 01, 2018 02:41 PM

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218563
Name Player
Paloma del Sol Poe
Achievements (?)
None yet!
 

She had been napping nearby, completely oblivious to the world around her.  Traveling day in and day out was exhausting and the more she wandered, the colder it got.  The colder it got, the grumpier she got and the more she convinced herself she was not meant to stay in the area.  Her fur was finally growing in decently, but goodness, it was never enough.  Nothing had prepared her from the rough transition from desert to snow—worse yet, she the winter was still young.  The days were short with limited sunlight and what little warmth it provided vanished as soon as it dipped below the horizon.  Basically, it sucked.

Not to everyone, apparently. 

Paloma nearly jumped out of her skin when a howl pierced the air—way too close, way too loud.  She groaned in annoyance, uncurling her legs with all the fury her pint-sized self could muster. “Do you MIND?” Half asleep as she was, Paloma really had no idea why he had even howled to begin with.  It hadn’t seemed to truly have a purpose—something she found odd in the distant corner of her mind.


Jul 06, 2018 11:15 PM — Post #1

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218572
Name Player
Los Strakh
Achievements (?)
None yet!
 

Upon hearing a voice from the snow, Los immediately jumped to his feet as if a ghost casually wondered by. He had never encountered anyone else while he traveled before. Why was someone there? Then again, why was he even there? Why did the tree stop him where it did rather than just letting him wonder endlessly? Fear rushed throughout his body. He had to say something, anything at this point to avoid angering the stranger further.
“I’m, so sorry, madam. Please forgive my intrusion. I didn’t think anyone would be out here with the cold and all.”


Jul 07, 2018 12:36 AM — Post #2

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218625
Name Player
Paloma del Sol Poe
Achievements (?)
None yet!
 

The wolf blinked slowly, allowing her eyes to gradually readjust to the light.  She squinted at him, half in annoyance and half because everything was too damn bright.  The apology was strange; she had encounter very few wolves that actually possessed proper manners.. or maybe, just maybe, she was the one that was weird.  Everyone seemed a bit.. stony, like the place had sucked the life out of them after so much time. 

Paloma felt a little guilty as she watched him.  He seemed.. flustered.  “It’s cool,” she said, head cocking.  “Why were you howling, anyway?”  She replayed the notes in her head—an empty, blank statement.  Was he happy?  Sad?


Jul 07, 2018 11:21 AM — Post #3

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218630
Name Player
Los Strakh
Achievements (?)
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Los couldn’t help but sigh in relief but he was still greatly nervous. The question she asked rattled in his mind. Why did he have to howl? He knew he shouldn’t have, yet he did anyway. He should know by now not to not do things so impulsively but he couldn’t seem to stop himself. Hindsight was becoming far to familiar to him.
Los slowly sat down still unsure what he should do about the situation. Should he tell her the truth or should he make up an excuse? Maybe a fish bit his tail? Or maybe allergies? I, uh… I’m sorry about the howl. If I’m completely honest with you, I’ve… I’ve never howled before. I was curious.


Jul 07, 2018 12:06 PM — Post #4

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218764
Name Player
Paloma del Sol Poe
Achievements (?)
None yet!
 

There were a lot of things that Paloma had expected to hear.  Maybe that he was arrogant and just liked the sound of his own voice or his throat was sore the day before and he had just wanted to test the hoarseness.  They were all farfetched, but none so much as the tale he offered.  Never howled?  “That can’t be true.  You never howled as a puppy just because you could?  What about after getting good news?  Bad news?”  Her tail swished behind her as she trotted a few strides closer, finding no reason to find this male intimidating.  “Sorry, that’s just.. how?”  It wasn’t like Paloma howled all the time, but every once in a while it felt nice to toss the old muzzle back and let go of her emotions.  Cathartic, really.


Jul 08, 2018 01:50 PM — Post #5

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218770
Name Player
Los Strakh
Achievements (?)
None yet!
 

The stranger acted exactly as Los anticipated. It was strange that he had never howled until then but now that he had, he didn’t fully understand what howling was useful for. After receiving good or bad news? Why? There had to be some purpose to it.
“Ever since I can remember, I’ve been told, ‘Only howl if you are in extreme danger and there’s no way you can escape.’ When I was young, maybe I tried to howl but that was the last time I tried, until now.”
Finally telling someone only made it seem much more strange but when you’re traveling alone for more than half your life, howling didn’t really matter, did it? “If you don’t mind me asking, but, what might your name be?”


Jul 08, 2018 02:37 PM — Post #6

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218771
Name Player
Paloma del Sol Poe
Achievements (?)
None yet!
 

“Annddd how did you locate each other?  Did you just track everyone?  No calling out for a friend or anything.. ever?”  It was doable, she guessed.  Paloma had heard of wolves being injured later in life and being unable to howl thanks to damage to their vocal chords, but she had never heard of someone being selectively mute.  Odd.  “Could you bark or anything?” she was intrigued, definitely.  What a strange way to grow up.  Her parents had encouraged her to use her voice in order to communicate—why not?  They were experts in howling.  Use it!

The wolf had nearly forgotten that they hadn’t exchanged names.  “Paloma.  You?”  She was going to call him Weirdy McNoHowl otherwise and she doubted he wanted that hanging over his head.  Amusing to herself, though.


Jul 08, 2018 02:48 PM — Post #7

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218774
Name Player
Los Strakh
Achievements (?)
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“I guess I could have barked but…” He paused and looked down at the ground. Others. Friends. A family. All things Los quickly heard about but never really had. Strangely it took this long for him to realize how alone he’s been the past year. “But I didn’t see a point while traveling alone. Who would pay any attention to a strange, barking wolf just passing through?”
It wasn’t until after he said everything that he realized he basically told a wolf he just met his whole life; minus a few things. After a few seconds, Los shook his head and looked back up at Paloma again trying to act like nothing was wrong. “It’s nice to meet you Paloma. My name is Los.”


Jul 08, 2018 03:11 PM — Post #8

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218812
Name Player
Paloma del Sol Poe
Achievements (?)
None yet!
 

He had a point there, she supposed.  There wasn’t really a point in communicating with others when there were.. no.. others.  Still, not even as a puppy?  “Weird,” she said, realizing a split-second later that perhaps it was a little bit rude.  “Not you.  Just that you haven’t howled before.  Makes me feel like maybe I howl too much.”  She howled when it called to her soul and occasionally to locate a distant friend, but much like him, she had been alone for quite some time.  “Maybe that’s how you make friends.  By barking and howling randomly.”  It worked on Paloma, hadn’t it?  Well.  Sorta.  She wouldn’t go so far as to say they were friends, but at the very least he had her attention.

“Los, huh?  You know any Spanish?”  It was a massive jump.  Los could have been a family name.  It just meant “the” to her, though.


Jul 08, 2018 08:41 PM — Post #9

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218819
Name Player
Los Strakh
Achievements (?)
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Los couldn’t help but chuckle slightly. “Don’t worry. Being called weird doesn’t bother me at all. It’s more of a compliment really. I doubt you howl too much; you haven’t howled once since we’ve started talking.” He had never thought that howling could have attracted friends before. If he’d known sooner he probably would have tested the theory and who knows where he’d have ended up.
“Spanish? Sadly I don’t. A long time ago, an old companion of mine tried to teach me some language called ‘Russian’, I think, but I was too young to pay attention so he gave up. He actually started calling me a rather unusual name shortly after. What does Spanish sound like?”


Jul 08, 2018 09:58 PM — Post #10

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218878
Name Player
Paloma del Sol Poe
Achievements (?)
None yet!
 

Part of her wanted to start accenting each of her sentences with a howl just to be a brat.  Don’t howl too much, huh?  We’ll see about that.  Fortunately for the world, she was far too lazy to do that and instead dropped nonchalantly onto her haunches with a muted thud.  Ah, much better.  Laziness ftw.

“Russian, huh?  That’s a rough sounding language.. oh, what did he start calling you?  Was it Fluffball?  Look at all your fur.”  She giggled, the irony of their differences not lost on her.  “I guess you’re better suited to this climate than I am.”  Made sense.  Actually, she was kind of jealous. 

“Spanish is my native tongue.  I didn’t speak any English when I first came here.  it sounds like.. Eres un lobo blanco grande que nunca aulló.  You’re a large white wolf who has never howled.”  Although she dearly missed speaking her own language, she had yet to find someone else that spoke the same.  Some days it was almost lonely.


Jul 09, 2018 12:20 PM — Post #11

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218885
Name Player
Los Strakh
Achievements (?)
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Los finally calmed down as he watched Paloma sit down. It was nice to finally have a conversation with something that wasn’t a tree or some random animal that just gave him a concerned and confused stare. He honestly wasn’t sure if they even understood a word he said but he liked to think so.
He chuckled at her guess. Fluffball. If only she was right then the name would make more sense. “Russian isn’t too bad a language. I just wish I paid more attention when I had the chance. Fluffball would have made more since but sadly it was ‘Moose’, for some reason.” He stopped, thinking about why Moose out of all the names he could have picked. After a whole year of trying to figure it out, he was still as clueless as before.
“All this fur can be nice as long as it doesn’t get warm then it’s a nightmare. It’s a small reason I’ve stayed in the snow covered mountains my whole life. That, and it’s hard to navigate when you have no idea where you’re going or where you are.”
Hearing her speak Spanish reminded him of his youth, kind of. And what she said made him laugh slightly. “You speak good English considering it’s not your native tongue but, where do you come from? I can’t say I’ve ever heard any one speak Spanish before but then again, it’s not like I’ve really talked to any one until now.”


Jul 09, 2018 01:51 PM — Post #12

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218895
Name Player
Paloma del Sol Poe
Achievements (?)
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Her lips pursed.  Moose?  Moose?  What kind of nickname was that – for him, no less?  Amber eyes rolled across his body briefly, trying to find some kind of hidden meaning.  Was there a moose marking on him somewhere?  “Huh.  I would not have guessed that.  Do you, uh, prefer being called that over Los?”  It was odd, but she wasn’t about to go against his wish.  If he wanted to be called Moose, she would damn well call him Moose.. even if Fluffball was more fitting.

His story was kinda sad.  “Are you lost?”  If he hadn’t even intended on coming to the valley, he was definitely off track.  There weren’t many other areas that were as far deep into the place as this – a several day journey from the wastelands.  “Did you get separated from the guy who called you Moose?”  If he was looking for him, she could help.. maybe.  If he was magically one of the three folks she had met, even better! 

“A place called Vida.  It’s a desert, so the absolute opposite of where you’re from.”  Which, of course, explained why their fur was so drastically different.  “My whole family speaks it and the few packs around us spoke it, but when I came here the first time it was.. a struggle.  I actually left in order to learn English somewhere else before coming back.”  It had been too embarrassing to try and find a pack without being able to say much more than hello.


Jul 09, 2018 03:51 PM — Post #13

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218904
Name Player
Los Strakh
Achievements (?)
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“I don’t have any preferences. You could call me whatever, I don’t mind.” It was a nice change having someone actually concerned about what to call him. It made his mind fill with curiosity for what she might come up with but there was still a more pressing matter on his mind.
“I wouldn’t go as far to say lost but rather traveling without any destination or any idea of where this area is. You don’t happen to know where we are, do you? Sadly we got separated a little over a year ago and I’ve been traveling alone ever since.” He wished he knew where he was going but after traveling as long and as far as he had, there was very little confidence he could call anywhere ‘home’.
The desert sounded like the worst place to live. The absolute opposite of cold and snow? There was no way he could survive in a place like that for a night. “So you left your family, learned a new language, quite successfully I must add, and left the place you called home, why? How hot did it get in the desert?” He couldn’t imagine how hot it must have got in order for someone to go through all of that. But then again, he found anything over 30°C unbearable.


Jul 09, 2018 05:27 PM — Post #14

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218974
Name Player
Paloma del Sol Poe
Achievements (?)
None yet!
 

No preference?  He should be careful with that.  She might end up calling him something super mean!  Nah, that wasn’t her thing.  Paloma nodded and kept her decision to herself—he would find out the next time she addressed him. 

“Horizon Valley.  That’s where this place is.  Are you trying to find him?  Trying to find a place to settle down?  Tell me ‘bout what you’re looking for.”  If she could help, she would.  Los didn’t even seem sure what he wanted, though, which made things a bit trickier.  Oh well, they’d manage.

Paloma shifted her weight, glancing to her paws.  “I didn’t fit in at home.  I didn’t fit in here when I originally came, so I left again.  Learned English, came back to try again.  Pretty determined to find myself a place where I belong.”  Without going into detail, that was her tale.  “Ahh, I don’t know exactly.  Maybe upwards of 49 degrees?  Maybe more, maybe less.”


Jul 10, 2018 11:52 AM — Post #15

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