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 Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert

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Lopiena

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 10:01 am

Listening to the Kobolds talk of fresh meat does nothing to help her relax, but the mention of 'goblin whores' and whoever this Grasky is...oh HELL no! Sigurd's shifting form is probably enough of a distraction that the Kobolds holding her might not be paying attention...shifting her weight suddenly one side then the other, Lo attempts to kick in the face of the Kobold holding her feet while simultaneously twisting her body around to get out of the grip from the other. If she can just get one hand free...the dreaded Thunderwave might be useful in this situation, and though she's worried about hurting everyone else it might be the only chance they'll get...

(Strength check, 19! Woot!)
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 11:25 am

[STR check for Kobalds holding Sigurd= 18(-2)+5(-2)=19. Sigurd fails to break free.

STR check for Kobalds holding Lopiena= 19(-2) +9(-2)=24. Lopiena's fails to break free.]

The kobald leader laughed as Sigurd and Lopeina both struggled to get free and failed. "You no escaping that easy!" He laughed at them.

The kobalds began dragging them to the back corner of the room when a strange rumbling began. Where it came from no one could figure out. It became steadily stronger and then suddenly sand began pouring in from the top corner of the room. Soon followed by sunlight.  

From the gap came four muscled and heavily armored individuals. They dropped to the ground, barefooted, and without missing a beat jumped on the kobalds. With swift movements they slit the creatures throats until all 8 lay dead on the ground. Sigurd would be able to smell wolf dander on all four of them. They were werewolves.

Looking up into the hole, the sand had been formed into sandstone stairs that led all the way back to the surface. Half way up the stairs stood Jacquelyn, Cirro and another even larger man with a large smile. He had long brunette hair braided on both sides and pulled back in a ponytail. His eyes were bright blue and sparkled when he laughed. His frame was large, even wider than Sigurd, and he was very tall, at least 6'3". His scent would be different than the four werewolf warriors and Sigurd would recognize it immediately: This man was a SpellWolf.

"Anyone call for a rescue?" He asked. His voice was booming and deep and he laughed with his whole body.  

The four fighters moved about the room, clearing the kobald bodies to make room for the heroes to walk out. Two of them grabbed Zane from his hanging spot and carefully carried him out of the hole. As they lay him down on the sand, one of the fights removed their helmet and set it on the sand.

It was a female elf with short blonde hair. Her green eyes were sharp, her expression neutral. She also seemed to be a medic as she immediately began tending to Zane's broken legs. The other fighter also removed his helmet. He was a half-elf man with greasy chestnut hair and dark eyes.  

Over to the side, the priest that Jacquelyn had been fighting was struggling against ties that bound him. There was also a gag in his mouth.  

The other fighters helped the heroes up to the stairs and once everyone was back to the surface, they removed their helmets as well. There were two humans, a male and female, and one male dwarf among them. The SpellWolf man smiled at them all. "Glad to see you all are alive and unharmed. Well..." He glanced at Zane. "Mostly unharmed at least."


Cirro stepped forward with a warm smile. "These fine folks caught sight of the little battle between Jacquelyn and that priest and came to investigate. When we told them you fell, they knew exactly where to look!" He said happily.  

Jacquelyn approached Lo and smiled. "I'm so glad you're alright." She said happily.  
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Alan_Dietrich

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 12:13 pm

Sigurd was about to whip his head backwards and try to take a bite out of one of his captors when the wall seemed to open up and spill fighters in. Soon enough all the kobolds were dead and the air lingered with the cent of wolf, not quite his people but near enough to feel familiar with them. But then the scent of his ilk hit him and his head snapped up to see the figure, he didn't recognize the face but there was no doubt he was a spellwolf, of that much her was certain.

"No, I don't recall we did" Sigurd huffed, he had it handled... pretty well... kinda... oh well. He walked passed the bodies of the kobolds and sighed, he was really looking forward to killing them himself. Looking up to Jacquelyn and Cirro he smiled "better late than never I guess."
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 12:33 pm

Still struggling with everything she has in her, Lo doesn't notice the rumbling at first, and even when it gets too obvious to ignore she continues fighting, hoping whatever that rumbling is will distract her captors enough. When sand and sunlight flood the room, she finally looks up, blinking at the sudden light...and warriors! And stairs! And...finding herself freed by the onslaught of warriors quickly dispatching the Kobolds, Lo runs up the stairs and envelopes Jacquelyn then Cirro in a huge hug. "I am so happy to see you! You have no idea!" Hugging both of them, Lo can barely contain herself...going from terrified to ecstatic so quickly just about short circuits her brain, and she starts laughing and crying at the same time. Finally pulling herself together at Sigurd's off handed comments, Lo grins at him sheepishly. Ok, over the top...still though. Wiping her eyes, Lo bows respectfully to the stranger next to Jacquelyn and Cirro. "Uhm. Thank you so much...I...yeah..." Eyes widening, she suddenly jumps back. "Oh! Zane! He's hurt, and..." A glance over at Zane reveals the blonde elf looking him over, and Lo barely resists the urge to pull Jacquelyn and Cirro with her. She'd been so worried so long, the only thing holding her together had been the hope that they'd come along...

Running over to Zane and the blonde, Lo kneels in the sand next to them. "Is he ok? I did all I could, it just wasn't enough..."
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 12:43 pm

The blonde elf looked up at Lopiena as she sat down. "You did well. He will be fine." She said. Her voice was deep for a woman. "She polinted out the splints. "These are good work. They will help his legs to heal straight." She nodded. "But we should get him back to the village. He needs serious healing."

Jacquelyn and Cirro followed Lo to Zane and Jacquelyn smiled. "Freak thing, really. This whole area is dotted with old ruins and tunnels. Guess you just happened to walk over a weakened point."

Cirro sat next to Lo, looking at Zane worriedly. Then he turned to Lo. "We wanted to come after you right away but the priest was still giving us a problem. By the time we finished with him the others showed up and told us there was an easier way into the tunnel than trying to dig you out. We had no idea if you'd even survived the fall." He said worriedly.

---

Ashwyn was just about to try getting herself out of the kobalds grasp when the rumbling began and they were suddenly surrounded by warriors in heavy armor. It wasn't until she spotted Jacquelyn and Cirro that she knew they weren't being attacked by new enemies though and she finally relaxed some. She followed the others out of the hole and looked up at the large man before them. She didn't have Sigurd's nose, but she could tell there was something familiar about the man. He reminded her of the larger fighters in Thunderknoll and his clothing seemed to fit the same style.

"Thank you for the assistance." She said formally.

The large man smiled down at her. "Of course young lady. Anything for friends of Jacquelyn." He smiled at her then his eyes finally moved to Sigurd. He blinked, his nose twitched, and then his smile widened. "Well all be damned...." He took a step towards him. "Jacquelyn didn't say anything about one of her friends being a SpellWolf!" He said and laughed with a booming voice. He offered his hand to Sigurd to shake it. "It's been decades since I've seen another SpellWolf! So good to meet you, friend!" He said happily.

Ashwyn's eyes widened when he mentioned the SpellWolf people. So maybe that's why he seemed familiar to her. He was a SpellWolf?
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Lopiena

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 4:59 pm

Hearing that Zane is going to be ok, Lo finally breathes and smiles at the blonde elf. "I'm so glad...I was so worried...but yeah, serious healing as soon as possible! How far is the village? Is there anything more I can do to help?"

Looking up at Jacquelyn's words about pitfalls and unknown underground ruins, Lo grins. "I was thinking about it while we were down there. We found something similar under Eventide, a place so old even they didn't know about it...but the construction was completely different! It really makes me wonder who or what was out here before the forest, before the desert, before everything! I'm sure Zane will want to study it when he's all better." Smiling at the gnome, Lo still worries about how long it will take him to heal...whether he'll be able to continue their journey or have to stay behind. At least there's something here for him to study, though after hearing about all of his travels she can't help but wonder about his next steps...literally.

Hearing Cirro explain about their troubles with the priest, Lo nods...she'd wondered about that, but didn't want to ask. "Zane saved us by casting Featherfall. Only he couldn't cast it on himself...he just has to be ok..." Trying not to think of her worries, Lo looks back up. "Who is that guy, anyway? Why did he suddenly start attacking you?"
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 5:22 pm

The elf girl shook her head. "It's not far. Maybe half a day's run." she said simply. Then stopped and turned to Lopiena. "Oh... Right... Well for you maybe a days walk. We can probably cut that time down a bit though. Don't worry, we have good healers." she nodded.

Zane nodded enthusiastically when Lo said he'd want to study the ruins. "Oh indeed! So fascinating and sadly I missed most of it. I'd love to figure out more!" he said with a dopy smile.

Jacquelyn chuckled and then turned to Lo whem she asked about the priest. "Pfft. He's aweful. Causes me trouble everytime I pass by. At first he tried to get me to join his order. When I refused he became more persistent. Usually we scuffle for a bit, he looses and lets me go. The pitfall seemed to spark things off even worse though. He claimed we were damaging sacred ground. Meh." she shrugged.
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Lopiena

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:09 pm

Biting her lip, Lo considers how far 'half a day's run' actually is...but hearing that they might be able to cut down the time it will take to get there, she simply nods. "Don't hold up Zane for me. If you have runners, the sooner he gets proper healing the better." Smiling at Zane's comments about studying the ruins, Lo looks like she wants to say something else to him but instead turns to the blonde elf again. "Oh! Uhm...sorry, I didn't catch your name...but I gave Zane an herb to help with pain. You'll need to know what it is...mixing herbs sometimes causes bad reactions..." Taking off her pack, Lo pulls out her pouch of herbs and hands her the broken leaf. "It's a painkiller and sedative...very potent...in the nightshade family, but not belladonna. It's a rare herb that grows near Fey Forest. It's...the only thing I could think of, he was in really bad shape..." Chewing on her lip nervously, Lo wonders if she'd caused more harm than good. The effects of that leaf should have worn off by now; too much of that leaf is toxic...and Zane is much smaller than her usual patients...glancing briefly at Cirro, Lo considers. "You might know what it is. The antidote grows deep in the forest near a spring, but it loses its potency when dried so I can't carry it with me ."

Trying to get her mind off her worries, Lo turns to Jacquelyn. "So that guy is trying to get you to jojn his order by attacking you? That makes no sense! But damaging sacred ground...well...there was a lot of old stuff down there."
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:17 pm

Sigurd took the man by his wrist and shook it. Of all the things he could imagine to expect out in this gods forsaken place, another of his kind was not one of them. Eyeing the man cautiously he finally spoke "I'll be honest, Werewolves I expected... but you? who are you and what brings you all the way out into the wasteland?" He realized after he spoke that now probably wasn't the best time for questions but unless otherwise ordered, his people didn't really leave ThunderKnoll at least, not to his knowledge.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:40 pm

Jacquelyn shrugged at Lo. "Nothing for you to worry about dear. He's easy to take care of. His magic is mediocre at best." She winked.

"Come on, dear. Let's let the medic work." She pulled Lo away from Zane and Cirro followed along as they walked back to where Sigurd and Ashwyn were speaking to the SpellWolf.

The SpellWolf man laughed again, another booming laugh. "I can say the same to you son!" He smirked, gripping Sigurd's wrist tightly with a strong shake. "I've been out here for nearly a century and I've never come across another SpellWolf." He smiled. "The names Brynoff. I came out here as a pup. You know how hard it is for werewolves to live normal lives? I found that out when I left Thunderknoll. It's not like back home for most of em. They loose their families, friends, and any hope of a normal existence. Most end up living in the wild and hunting game like a damn animal."

The human female came forward, holding her helmet in the crook of her arm. She was much shorter than the rest of them, not even 5 feet tall, with silvery gray hair though her face was young and beautiful. "Brynoff, started a village out here for werewolves. A place we can live our lives out without fear of prosicution. Where we can raise families again." She said with a warm smile towards the SpellWolf.

The human male approached at the females side. He had red hair and a red scraggly beard and stood around Sigurd's height. "We owe him a great debt. Because of him, we're safe and happy."


"That's amazing." Ashwyn said, turning back to Brynoff. "How many in your village?"

"Well it's grown into quite the hamlet over the years. I believe we're about a few hundred strong now. More join us now and then as word spreads about the place." Brynoff explained. "And we have those that trade with us, like Jacquelyn and a few others. It's perfectly safe outside of the full moon. That's why we're so far out. We don't want to risk harming anyone. Every other village is far more than a nights run from here so even if someone lost control, they can't reach anyone except for the stray traveler. And that's rare now since no one wants to travel the desert if they don't have to."

Brynoff turned back to Sigurd. "I'd love to hear how Thunderknoll is doing. I have to say... there are many a day I miss the smells and sounds of the forest. The feeling of running through the trees..." He shook his head, remembering fondly being back in the High Forest.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:45 pm

Sigurd didn't hate regular werewolves, but he wasn't fond of the penchant to lose control on a full moon. The moon has passed so it wouldn't be an issue. He hadn't stopped staring at Brynoff since he saw him "ThunderKnoll's last census indicated that population growth has expanded 12% in the last year with a 2% decrease caused by deaths either related to age or illness.. putting the current population at around two thousand." His voice sounded autonomous as if he was giving a report. Not that he was concerned of revealing that much information to someone he just met, they were both of the manawell so they were like family.

"Tell me Brynoff, Are you the only one of our kind in your village? do you have children?" he asked as they started out of the pit.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 9:00 pm

Brynoff nodded. "I see. Well good. I'm glad to hear things are well... You know.... All things considered..." he cleared his throat, knowing that Sigurd would understand qhat he did not want to openly discuss.

At Sigurd's questions he chuckled, walking them out of the pit." Yes, I'm the only SpellWolf. It's just me. But I get by. Lots to care fir around the village anyway. It keeps me busy." he nodded.

The half-elf who had been assisting the elf woman approached Brynoff. "Sir. The gnome needs healing. We should make haste back home."

The large man nodded. "Yes of course." he turned to the others. "We can make better time if we run. We're happy to carry all of you. It'll save time and get your friend to a healer as fast as possible."


Ashwyn nodded. "Thank you. But are you sure you don't mind?"

Jacquelyn approached and slapped Brynoff's shoulder. "He wouldn't offer if he did." she smirked. "Ill ride with the cart and the gnomes camel. You can take the others." she indicated the rest of the party.


Ashwyn moved up next to Sigurd. "I'm pretty sure I already have a ride." she looked up to her mate and smiled.

Brynoff smiled at them, then turned to Lopiena. He stared at her pointedly for a moment or two before kneeling next to her. "I'd like to offer you a ride... If you don't mind, my dear?" he asked, offering his hand to her.
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Lopiena

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Fri Jul 06, 2018 10:57 pm

Nodding at Jacquelyn's suggestion to let the medic work in peace, Lo bows her thanks to the medic and rises with Cirro and follows Jacquelyn to join the others. Listening to Sigurd talking to...Brynoff? Interesting name...Lo can't help but feel more than a little intimidated. Based on the talk, pretty much everyone here has some sort of affiliation with wolves; there's no problem with that, Lo is just surprised. Talking to a legend is one thing, finding an entire village is...well, something more. It's incredibly fascinating, though. Especially overhearing the part about how werewolves find themselves ostracized by their own families...it's really sad how one event completely changes an entire life, how people abandon their own when the need is greatest. It's good to know that there are still some with enough caring to reach out to those in need.

Looking at Byrnoff with great respect, Lo is still somewhat taken aback when he looks at her so closely and kneels next to her, offering a ride... "Uhm...I guess? I mean...uhm. It would be an honor, sir." Swallowing nervously, Lo accepts his hand...human style, she hadn't seen the wrist grasp from earlier...and smiles. "Thank you for your generous gift."
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sat Jul 07, 2018 10:34 am

Sigurd picked up on Byrnoff's clearing of his throat, though not completely sure what he was alluding to, he'd have to ask later... Turning to Ashwyn he smiled "Of course dear," he said shifting into his Dire Wolf form and laying on his stomach to make it easier for her to mount him. He thanked himself for the training they had done the night before, or he wouldn't be able to keep up with the others.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sat Jul 07, 2018 10:45 am

Brynoff chuckled at Lopiena and nodded. "The gift is mine, believe me." He said with a warm smile before transforming into his DireWolf form and, like Sigurd, he lay down flat so Lopeina could climb on.

Meanwhile, the other fighters transformed into their wolf forms. Two of the wolves were secured to a sort of sled that they had put Zane on top of so they could pull him behind them. Jacqyelyn climbed up onto the camel's back and made sure the cart was secured to it. Cirro didn't know where he should go, but one tug from Brynoff's snout told him he should climb on behind Lopiena. He nodded and joined her.


Ashwyn smiled at her mate and placed a kiss to the top of his furry head before climbing onto his back. She lay her body against him and nuzzled against his soft fur, cooing slightly at the comfort it provided. Pip jumped up and nuzzled against her before settling himself against Sigurd's fur.

One sharp bark from Brynoff signled the start of the run. He led the pack as they ran through the sand with ease. They were faster than the camel but not by much. And two of the wolves remained behind to make sure the cart remained safe.

As they ran, Brynoff moved next to Sigurd and spoke to him with soft growls.
"I'm impressed son! It took me years to learn to run in the sand!" He chuckled.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sat Jul 07, 2018 10:52 am

As Ashwyn kissed his head, Sigurd wiggled his ears to buffet her face lovingly with their soft fur, his muscles tensed signaling her to hold on before he took off with the others.

Sigurd's eyes were focused ahead of him as they ran but Brynoff's comment struck a nerve "I'm not your son, but I'm a fast study" No one other than his father had called him son, lad, boy, pup, runt. Those he would allow but son was something only his father had claim to. Whether it was out of love or respect for the man Sigurd would keep it that way.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sat Jul 07, 2018 11:05 am

Carefully securing her staff behind her so her body is between Brynoff and the silver in her staff, Lo bows respectfully with one hand on the dire wolf's shoulder before mounting up. When Cirro is invited to sit behind her, she can't help but grin. Just like that run in the woods! Except entirely different. Trying to keep some sort of dignity...this is a complete stranger after all...Lo nonetheless leans forward and wraps her arms into the soft fur on his neck. His fur is just as soft; she'd expected it to be a bit coarser on the older wolf. Feeling Cirro wrap his arms around her waist, she pauses a moment to grip his hands in her own before holding onto Brynoff as the group takes off.

Running through the sand is very different than running through the forest. Not as many trees to dodge, for one thing.  The shifting sand made the ride somehow smoother, almost as though he was skating through the sand rather than running on top of it...but it's clearly an effort, and the feeling of rippling muscles under her legs is making it harder for her to maintain some sort of dignity. Grinning in spite of herself, laughing deep in her throat, Lo tries to focus on the scenery flying by. He's a stranger, and the leader of whatever this group is. Some decorum would be nice!
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sat Jul 07, 2018 11:45 am

Brynoff snuffed in a chuckle. "Alright, Alright kid. No offense intended." he barked.

The desert flew by them as they ran. The strong bodies of the wolves made travel so much faster. They bounded through the sand like fish through the waves. They're shadows traveled from one side of them to another as the sun skirted the sky, and as it drew towards the horizon a new sight appeared before them. Large stone structures loomed ahead of them. Two large watch towers were the first to be seen, followed by far more plantlife than they'd seen thus far. The gound was thicker here too; more dirt, less sand.

Passing underneath the watchtowers they'd be able to see archers standing up top, watching them carefully. They ran for a bit longer, passing fields with farmers hard at work in them, before they began to see more houses. The pack slowed and finally stopped when the houses were beginning to get closer together.

There was a road of sandstone trailing through the houses which were built in a similar style to Thunderknoll's oldest homes. As the homes went further out they became more unique, but all were fairly small and modest.

Brynoff lowered himself to the ground again so his passengers could climb off
.

Cirro tripped as he slid off and stumbled to the ground. Once Lo had removed herself as well, Brynoff changed back to his human form.

Ashwyn slid off of Sigurd and rubbed his head affectionately before turning to look around at the village.

Brynoff opened his arms wide. "Welcome, friends, to Wombourne!"
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sun Jul 08, 2018 1:40 am

As the day wore on, Lopiena's initial excitement waned. Being capable of riding is one thing, but riding for hours on end is another! Lo is amazed that these wolves can maintain such speed for so long, through the sand, in the heat of the day...their stamina and strength is remarkable! There's no way a human could sustain this pace. Her human body can barely keep up with riding; holding on with her arms and legs is exhausting. There's no way she's going to mention it, though. First rule of traveling: Never, ever complain. Especially when you haven't the right. It's not like she's the one running!

As the land begins to change, Lo sits up a little and notes the vegetation and the soil. Very interesting, especially considering all the sand in the surrounding areas. Life begets life, and having the start of good soil and vegetation encourages other things to grow. Resisting the temptation to gawk at all the fields, Lo is still thrilled to see such green in the dry desert. Continuing forward past the houses, the guard towers, and everything else Lo starts running through mental exercises to help calm her mind and ready herself to meet new people. At least it's a pretty small village compared to other places they've seen already, and the folks they've meet so far seem very nice.

When Cirro dismounts, Lo quickly follows, barely keeping from falling herself. Helping him up gives her a moment to recover from being more or less in the same position for hours on end, and standing up straight again feels amazing! Unfortunately it doesn't take keen ears to near her stomach growling, but Lo is much more concerned about those who did all the work...her own needs can wait. Bowing respectfully to Brynoff once again when he shifts back into his human form, Lo smiles at him. "Thank you again for the generosity of your ride. And this village is amazing! You founded it yourself?"
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sun Jul 08, 2018 11:53 am

Brynoff smiled at Lopiena and bowed his head to her thanks. "The pleasure was mine. And yes. Well, for the most part. It took a lot of hard work from dedicated people to make it what it is today. And it took a lot of convincing to the werewolves that helped me. After years of pursecution it wasn't an easy sell." He chuckled.

He wasn't lost to the sound of Lopiena's stomach growling either. He smirked at her and winked. "But I'm sure you're all hungry. Please, allow me to treat you all!" He snapped his fingers towards the two who carried Zane. "Denice and Gazeem will take your friend to the medic. I assure you he will be well taken care of and fed."

Jacquelyn stepped up, pulling the cart behind her. "I'll go with him. I need to get this cart unloaded anyway." She ruffling Lopiena's head affectionately before following after the two wolves that carried Zane away.


Zane waved as he was dragged.

Brynoff turned to Sigurd, Ashwyn and Lopeina. "Right. As for the rest of you, I'd like you to be guests at my table. Please, come with me." He said and led the way through the streets to a stone house that looked larger than the others. Inside it was modest enough, though there were several folk running around tending to things. He led them through a long hallway and into a dining room with a large table. "Please, make yourselves at home. I'll have food brought out." He said as he walked into another door off the side.

Ashwyn looked around the area as the other fighters moved to sit around the table.

The room was of modest origins, but did hold quite a few banners and decorative items that Sigurd would recognize from Thunderknoll.

"I supposed we should introduce ourselves." The dwarf man said as he plopped himself down on a chair. "Names Harper. Geluki Harper. Good ta know ya." He said with a nod.

The female human sat down as well. "I'm Tabitha Burrows. Pleasure." she said as the male human sat next to her.

"Sampson Quinten." He said simply, then fell silent. He didn't seem to be the talking sort.

"The two with your friend are Denice Thorton and Gazeem Estevan." Tabitha said.


"It's nice to meet you all." Ashwyn said as she glanced at her companions before moving to sit in a chair herself. She sat next to Tabitha, but left the chair on her other side empty for Sigurd. "I'm Ashwyn Nae." She said with a bow of her head.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sun Jul 08, 2018 12:31 pm

The journey was fairly silent, the name Brynoff stuck in my head. Why did he know the name and why did it bother him so much... it bothered him the entire trip. There was a sense of relief when the desert started to fade away for the most part, his pads were killing him even though he was able to keep pace with the others he was still used to dirt and grass.. not burning sand.

The cooling sensation of developed ground, fields, farms an what was essentially civilization was a nice change of pace from the rolling sand dunes they had spent days traversing, once in the village proper Sigurd followed suit with Brynoff and let Ashwyn off his back before shifting back to his human form and rubbing his feet on the ground, scratching the burning itch he had.

Sigurd looked around as they stood and there was a strange feeling of home here, there wasn't the feeling of the magic of Thunderknoll but the building design was certainly similar. "Interesting.." was all he managed to say.

As they walked into the dining hall, Sigurd's eyes darted about taking in what he would describe as relics from the past, things were starting to fall together in his mind as it ran a mental indexing of all the sigils and banners. As each one introduced themselves he nodded and made his way beside his mate and took his place in front of it. "I'm Sigurd Krieger" he said as he sat down.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sun Jul 08, 2018 12:59 pm

Brynoff was just walking back into the room as introductions were being passed around. He was carrying a large silver tray holding a roast boar on it. The smells of roasted pork and apples filled the room. Behind him were two large women holding trays of their own with accompanying foods.

He was just approaching the table as Sigurd spoke his name. He froze, the tray inches from the table's surface, and looked at him. He stared for a moment, then set the tray down.

"Krieger?" He asked, He squinted at him, as though looking at him for the first time. "Yes.... I see it now. Spitting image of your father. Well... except for the hair... and eyes. You're mother's eyes for sure." He smiled. "Who would have thought, a century later, it would come to this..." He muttered to himself, shaking his head. "Well.... this could get quite awkward then."

"Sigurd, here, is the son of Edmund Krieger; Alpha of Thunderknoll."

The fighters around the table exchanged glances that ranged from concern to shock.


Ashwyn frowned, noticing the glances. "Why is that significant?"

"Well because," Brynoff stood, his eyes never leaving Sigurd's. "I'm Brynoff Arnnd. And 98 years ago I tried to challenge his father for Alpha."
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sun Jul 08, 2018 1:05 pm

Arnnd! that was the surname that escaped him, Rising to his feet Sigurd's eyes were like fiery daggers at Brynoff "You challenged my father not only for Alpha but for my mother as well! Your arrogance got you exiled from Thunderknoll." his fist clenched "you're lucky my father didn't kill you when he had the chance" it was a story that his father told quite often, he had scars that he liked to point out as well. It may have happened before Sigurd was born but his blood boiled all the same. He wasn't upset at the challenge, that was a normal part of their society, but treating his mother as a prize to be won. That was where his ire lay.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sun Jul 08, 2018 1:39 pm

Brynoff didn't flinch back from Siugurd's ire. The other fighters jumped up, ready to defend their Alpha, but he held a hand out, forcing them to sit again. He stood still and calm as he nodded. "That's right. I did. And I lost. And you're right. I am lucky that Edmund didn't kill me. He should have. For all intents and purposes he should have ripped my throat out. But he didn't."

Ashwyn tensed when Sigurd stood. She wasn't as versed in the history of his people as he was, but she did recall the name Arnnd and she was concerned with how things would play out now.

Brynoff stared Sigurd down. He didn't make a single move that could be construed as threatening, nor did he back down from the gaze. "You know, I'd always hoped that one day I could talk to your father. I suppose this is as good an oppritunity as any." He sighed, and sat down in a chair across from Sigurd. He knew that if Sigurd chose to attack that he wouldn't fight back.

"I was a right ass in those days. Grew up with your father, you know. We competed over everything. Your dad always won, of course. Back then I didn't understand why, but it was because he wasn't trying to win. I was so worried about defeating him that it distracted me from the actual task. Even when it came to your mother." He shook his head, his eyes looking far away as he remembered. "Lorah Klein. She was by far the most beautiful woman in all of Thunderknoll. And the toughest." He looked up at Sigurd. "But she never had eyes for me. I couldn't accept that then, but it's plain as day to me now. I thought if I could prove myself to her. Show her that I COULD beat Edmund in SOMETHING. That maybe.. JUST MAYBE.. she'd see that I was worth while." He chuckled. "I was a fool." He shook his head.

"Best thing that ever happened to me was being beaten to a pulp by your father." He nodded. "I wouldn't see that until years later, of course. But you know... I think you're father always knew. I think that's why he didn't kill me that day. I think he knew that I had the potential to be something more than an arrogant ass who only wanted to impress others. At least... I'd like to think he saw something in me worth keeping around." He sighed. "I've always wanted to ask him, you know? Why he didn't just end me that day." He looked at Sig pointedly. "You're mother almost did, you know. Edmund had to stop her. He saved my life twice that day. Not that I would have blamed her, of course."

He sighed and placed his palms on the table. "You're father gave me a great gift that day; Forcing me to leave the forest. It would take years for me to recognize it, and even more years for me to appreciate it, but I do. And I'd love nothing more than to thank him for it. But I know I probably won't ever get that chance." He looked back up at Sigurd. "You have every right to be angry at me. And if you wanted to get your revenge I wouldn't stop you. And not one person at this table would raise a claw to you either."

The fighters around the table grumbled at that statement, but they all nodded just the same. It was clear they didn't want their Alpha killed, but they would honor his words.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert   Sun Jul 08, 2018 2:10 pm

Jaw and fist clenched, Sigurd stood silent, listening to Brynoff's story. His aggressive features melted into a more stolid state. His father's story was always short, He was challenged, he won but bore scars from the event and then exiled his challenger, the first ever recorded Exile of Thunderknoll, most others were killed.

When he finished his story something unexpected happened in Sigurd his hand whipped to his mouth and he stifled his own laughter until he couldn't hold it. "My mother... almost killed you?" he caught his breath "and my father stopped her" calming himself he wiped a tear away "I'm surprised she didn't kill you both honestly!" he knew his mother wasn't one to suffer fools and it sounded like his father and Brynoff had a history of childish bickering. "I don't have any revenge to take... Your fight was with my father, not me."

Letting out a sigh and sitting back in his seat, Sigurd smiled at his elder "I apologize for my ourburst, it was uncalled for. I thank you for your hospitality and if you have a message for my father, I will gladly take it with me to give to him upon my return." he said calmly "However, I do wish to meet with you privately after this to discuss another issue."
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Chapter Four: Barren Wastes of the Desert
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