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Elemental Battles: Rage Ch. II: Fire

Maxim Lake

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a part of Elemental Battles: Rage Ch. II: Fire, by Seveneleven.

The Largest Lake around.

Seveneleven holds sovereignty over Maxim Lake, giving them the ability to make limited changes.

434 readers have been here.

Copyright: The creator of this roleplay has attributed some or all of its content to the following sources:

https://www.roleplaygateway.com/roleplay/elemental-battles

Setting

Maxim Lake is a very famous lake known for being the largest made by the Arlyne. Created as a symbol of Peace and Connectivity, the Lake once saw many visitors but now few travel near it since the start of the Great War.

Maxim Lake, to many, is considered to be the midpoint between the Onatah Cliffs and the Vulcan Mountains. Making it a once popular travel route between the biggest territories found on Nigerius.
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Maxim Lake

The Largest Lake around.

Minimap

Maxim Lake is a part of Nigerius.

4 Characters Here

Ash [20]
Shamus [17] A sneaky Saffron con, trading luck for a meal.
Vixen [1] "foxes are canines too. so it is only reasonable that a wolf raised me"
tate [1] "i am stained by blood on the outside, but stains you can not see are much darker"

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Character Portrait: Ash
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Ash

Ash was tired of walking and to be honest, she wasn't very happy. Her parents had actually come home to occupy the same space that was their home. Usually, she only ever saw her father in the war room and her mother advising some other high ranking wolves or setting the schedule for dig time in the mines. It really was awkward.

Now as she, a blue blood Dimitrois, who didn't have much skill in either field, she was allowed the unusual liberty to be... herself, as she did sometimes have lucky breaks. Except, she was sure that both parents were here to address her, a singleton. In being, well, too single.

While being allowed to follow her obsessions, diamonds/gems, she was also well pass the age to have left home to either succeed in a military career or some other life path. It was a bit strange if compared to the the lives of her fellow Dimitrois, but Ash was not just some common Dimitrois... she was Ash. Romantic notions were fun, and all, but only just to cause trouble or some sort of mayhem. So, she had always refused to forge a pair bond with anyone. Diamonds were her sole priority in this life. As well as her own life, of course.

So when her parents had begun to talk to her, she had laughed and walked away. Brushing them off in a rebellious manner wasn't strange and neither was her second move... to sneak away with a troop of soldiers heading out on a raid.

It just so happened that they would be traveling west of Dimitrois Pack territory. Toward the Alvans. And they had just stopped to rest near Maxim lake on their journey.

Setting

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Character Portrait: Ash Character Portrait: tate Character Portrait: Vixen
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Ash

“Well one I was checking to make sure you were not a threat to my pup. And second it looks like your bath was just about to be interrupted but the blood in the river.” Ash raised a paw, as if silently laughing at this wolf for thinking she'd take a bath in a lake. Or, perhaps it was hilarious how this wolf was treating her. Even when pretending to be strangers, Nova and his group had treated her with some sort... of respect or deference.

Or at least until he shouted at me. The thought brought back the memory of having been assaulted with Nova's heated words, leaving a bad taste in her mouth.

It quickly ruined whatever light mood she was in, and all previous thoughts of not wanting to shed blood on this day evaporated.

“My name is Tate, And you are?”

The repeated question made her mood drop even more. Her ears were laid back, and her facial expression spoke nothing but irritation. Ash was quite clearly, no longer in a merciful mood. "I told you already." The ground began to shake with her sudden anger, notifying the soldiers and guards she had been traveling with that she may possibly need their help.

A howl to the north arose and Ash glared at Tate. "I suggest you and your cub leave. Now."

Normally, Ash was a civilized wolf in that she never really fought or killed anyone. But it didn't mean she didn't know how to fight using her element. In fact, it was easy when she was angry as she compared her killing methods to crushing bugs. Just on a larger scale. Or perhaps, she'd entomb these enemies in the earth. Living but unable to escape or eat, or drink.

But most of the time Ash didn't kill other wolves with her own paw. Most of the time, just her word was enough to kill as she had servants to do the killing for her.

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Character Portrait: Ash
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Ash

Time had already passed since Ash had last seen those annoying pests that had bothered her. She should have crushed them, and tote their dead bodies over her guards. That would have been a great rumor to put her parents at ease. Ash the crusher has killed some lowly wolves belonging to an enemy pack! What a rumor...

But seeing as how it had been a good beginning to a good day, she had restrained herself and let them keep their lives. Having left it at that, she had pranced away to join the squadron of soldiers she had snuck away with.

Back on the road now, Ash was trying not to let her bag of small jewels get in her way... she repositioned it again, and it was when she almost dropped a jewel that the sound of snarls reached her ears.  She stopped what she was doing to see her guards take off toward the sounds and around a bend of trees. "Strigoi! We're outnumbered!"

Ash turned around and darted after the guards,  wondering why they rushing forward when they should be retreating. Though, when she turned the corner, she saw just how outnumbered they were. She gulped, and froze when a Strigoi male noticed her.

*****


Hours later, the scene was horrific. Far outnumbered, the Dimitrois soldiers had been slaughtered. And having been left out and about, the massacred bodies were still strewn across the path. Among them, was one strangely looking like Ash with her brown and black coat, and of course her jeweled necklace shown brightly in the sun.

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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#, as written by Krypt
Shamus

The sun slitting through the trees grew lower with every bend, as the Saffron traveler gratefully awaited the impending evening. His satchel had grown heavy long ago, and there was that constant debate of whether to sinch the strap up close and be hot, or to loosen it and have pack jostle around with every step. He readjusted every ten paces it seemed like.

Shamus sniffed the air, heartened again by the smell of the nearby water. Maxim Lake was close. Not only was that waypoint good for a drink and a bath, but it also meant he had finally put a decent space between himself and that confounded village. His latest scheme at glory had failed. How was he to know that the elector's wheat was going to be made into bread? In seasons past, those who sought to be alpha merely had to show their skill by correctly predicting how a couple stalks of grain were going to look, not eat it! And that poison! It was supposed to kill the plants right away, not linger around invisible until it was baked and the electors were to eat it at some sanctimonious closing ceremony. Shamus' facade had fallen apart when it had been his turn to eat the poisoned bread. For once his silver tongue couldn't get him out of a pinch. It didn't help that the wolf who had eaten before him had already started to choke. At least his legs had still worked. Though he still had to wonder what they would do to Felonious when they found the Hemlock in their midst...

All recollections ceased as he rounded the next bend, his mind's eye focused on the scene ahead of him. Carcasses of wolves littered the path. Shamus looked left and right, skittish at first. Unnerving sight. It took him a moment to reason that if he was going to be ambushed, it would have already happened. Like to these unfortunate sods. What the devil had happened?

Curiousity slowly replacing his initial apprehension, Shamus approached the gruesome scene. It looked fresh...but how fresh? A swipe of his paw at a random wolf's tail revealed that it had already started to stiffen; the attack must have occured at least half a day ago. Whomever the attacker was was long gone. Had they left anything behind?

Always on the hunt for something quick and easy, the spurious Saffron began to nose about the wolf's remaining possessions. They weren't using them any more. Besides his initial tail swipe, he was careful to avoid contacting any of the bodies, more out of squemishness than anything. After several minutes of fruitless searching, obviously the wolves had already been looted, Shamus turned to leave when a glimmer caught his the corner of his eye. A glance in that direction revealed what was. A gemstone necklace, still worn by its owner, reflecting in the evening sun.

Shamus couldn't believe his luck. He could use those fancy colored rocks for all sorts of scams! If wolves though that the hokey little wooden talismans he trades out were worth worshiping, imagine what they would trade him for a lucky gemstone! He knew a general or two who would easily trade away his only daughter for a rock that could give a lucky break in battles. What fun he could have with those!

Almost giggling with glee, Shamus padded carefully over to the fallen shewolf, and gently brushed the fur on her neck away from the glistening necklace. "Well aren't you pretty..." he muttered.

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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Ash

"Well, aren't you pretty..." Had things gone the easy way, the words spoken by Shamus would have fallen on deaf ears, but unfortunately for him, someone was around to wake up to them.

Ash blinked her eyes open, and as she has always been aware of the space between her beloved gems and strangers, she knew some low life was trying to steal from her. And since she had just been in battle a few hours before, her reflexes came back quickly.

Not a second after Shamus touched her necklace, she jumped up!

Letting out a small growl of disapproval, Ash quickly disengaged Shamus from her necklace with a swipe of her paws, "Let go!" Strange how she was more concerned over getting stolen from then being happy about having survived a massacre. "Low life." It was muttered under her breathe as she quickly picked up her pack of gems that had been laying under her, whilst checking it's content.

Everything was there.

Ash let out a sigh of relief that the low life in front of her hadn't taken anything... yet. She was sure he'd try something else though. "Gem stealing thieves don't live very long."

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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#, as written by Krypt
Shamus

To say that Shamus was startled is an understatement. Not only did a supposed corpse reanimate right before his eyes, but his paw had briefly become entangled in her necklace, dragging him off balance. "SHNERZZZ!" is probably the closest to the exclamation that snarled through gritted teeth. As soon as she batted away, his freed paw immediately went to his chest, where he had sworn his heart skipped a beat or three.

"The devil's fang, missie! What's your beef doin' that?!" Shamus said loudly, practically yelling. It took a moment of heavy breathing for him to get his voice down to it's usual cadence. Unsurely, he prodded the nearest prone figure to make sure it wasn't about to leap up as well. It didn't. Yet.

"Gem stealing thieves don't live very long."

"Heh, well, you don't seem to know about livin' long, missie. At least your comp'ny don't," Shamus responded, his tone still high strung as he gestured to the bodies of the fallen Dimitrios. Strange, there weren't any other packs about. Had the rival pack gotten away clean, or had some kind of infighting broken out?

"Asides, what business do you have missie, insulting me? I don' see anythin' more insultin' than you pretending to be dead among the fallen," Shamus continued, uncharacteristically defensive. It was then he remembered how exactly she had insulted him, with "gem stealing thief" as her line. Oh yeah. She had gems. He had forgotten all about those stupid rocks amidst the whole wakening of the dead.

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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Ash

Ash gritted her teeth, trying to ignore the sudden headache that was making her skull feel oversized. She kept a paw on her bag of gems, while she looked around, remembering that her guards had been taken out. Their bodies left to rot, though several of them had been drained of all their blood. How could this have happened? Why didn't they use their element to defend themselves? Why didn't she do anything?

The answer came quickly when she remembered just how fast the Strigoi had appeared. This ambush had been so quick! It made her insides feel out of place, like any second now she was going to hurl any and all food she had eaten earlier. "My guards..."

She blinked, and quietly sniffed though she didn't cry. The sun weighed time down for her, and allowed her to etch this scene into her memory, where she would never forget it. Always, this scene would pop into her head whenever Strigoi were mentioned.

"Strigoi had ambushed us... I got knocked out... Lucky me I guess." She got up and finally noticed the dried blood and dirt that was caked into her pelt. Great, just great. She calmed herself, and with a strange elegance considered the wolf in front of her. "What's your name, Low life?"

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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#, as written by Krypt
Shamus followed the shewolf's gaze as she related the scene of the ambush. He shivered slightly at the implications of the attack being made by the blood wolves. These wolves had been stripped of more than just their outter valuables. Strigoi were one of the few packs that Shamus steered well clear of. There was something unnerving about those vampiric blood wolves, and their long fangs were hardly attractive. Besides, a pack where bloodshed was required for it's very existence, war or peace, didn't strike Shamus as a wise lot to reason with. Case in point, this ambush.

 "What's your name, Low life?"

Shamus removed his eyes from the fallen, and fixated his gaze on the shewolf left standing. "Shamus, madame. M'name is Shamus," he replied, his words sounding hollow. Frustration gnawed at the edge of the stunned haze that had still clouded his brain since the scare. He had lost his usual swagger to what, a little jump scare? The only bit of diplomacy that had slipped through his stupor was the thought to use 'madam' in his address rather than his usual 'missie'. If this wolf was high enough to have guards, he expected that she would expect that respect.

Shaking his head as if that could clear it, his eyes fell on the wounds the other wolf had sustained. Briefly, the thought of simply overpowering Ash and taking her stuff crossed his mind, but he quickly dismissed that. Too risky. He hated fighting. Indeed, she was bigger than him, and would likely bloody him up even in her own injured state.

"Shameful loss of life, but at leas' their valuable cargo pulled through, madam. An' the jewels as well," Shamus spoke, with the subtle intent to fan her ego. "Wherehaps were you headed with so much protection?"

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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Ash

"Shamus, madame. M'name is Shamus," he replied. Ash wondered why he called her Madam. She didn't look like one did she? Maybe it was because of the dirt, and blood on her? She hoped so. Nothing would ruin her life more then realizing she was a Madam and not Ash. He better not call me 'Madam' again.

"Shameful loss of life, but at leas' their valuable cargo pulled through, madam. An' the jewels as well."

Ah, he said it again.

"Wherehaps were you headed with so much protection?" By the time he was done speaking, Ash was glowering at him. She really looked at him then. He was somewhat smaller then her, and he didn't appear to be on the more dangerous end of elemental packs. He looked more like some con artist ready to sell her 'Borak charm' that clearly wasn't an actual Borak Charm. "Firstly: My name isn't Ash," she replied, "it's Ash, and Secondly-" she looked around the bodies. "I just tagged along with them, they weren't escorting me anywhere... So don't think I'm some royalty."

She got up and stretched, ignoring the fact that she was lying. It was better to lie to him seeing as she had just met him. She was sure he could of use to her now. Or later.

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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#, as written by Krypt
Shamus

"Firstly: My name isn't Ash, it's Ash, and Secondly-I just tagged along with them, they weren't escorting me anywhere... So don't think I'm some royalty."

Shamus held Ash's gaze as she spoke, careful to keep the look casual while noting her unfriendly expression. He didn't believe for a minute that she wasn't, as she put it, some kind of royalty. Plebeians don't walk around with jewel encrusted necklaces. Still, he politely nodded and worked out how to fluidly adjust his language to meet her preferences. The first few minutes of a deal were always the hardest, trying to establish what the other wolf was comfortable with before getting in deeper. No madam's from him, no mam. It was Ash.

"Well, it looks like yous hitched on to the wrong party, Ash," Shamus responded, looking about the fallen before starting to step his way out of the mess. He was starting to get back into his groove, and he didn't want stifle that by remaining in this stomach-churching battlefield.

Having pivoted away from the fallen, yet remaining within range of casual conversation, he made a show of glancing at her bloodied side. "You really shoulds 'ave that wound dressed," the Saffron said with a gesture. Now here was the critical part. He would offer to supply the bandaging, but had to decide whether to do it for free or for a trade. Not trading healing for the gems, obviously. That would make him downright sleazy. But strangers often grew suspicious when you offered to do something for free, as they were always looking for a catch. No, he'd have to come up with something relatively benign for Ash to give him in exchange for the wrappings. Then they could move on to bigger things.

"I do carry a bit of dressings meself...I'd be happy to lend them to you if yous could 'elp me out with some directions..." Shamus said, his tone purposefully uncertain.

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Ash

"Well, it looks like yous hitched on to the wrong party, Ash." Clearly, he didn't believe her.

"You really shoulds 'ave that wound dressed." He was getting on her nerves, but Ash being Ash, didn't let this show on her face. She was used to putting on an act. Her life as the only daughter of two high ranked Dimitrois generals was filled with such things as political strategy and whatnot. Who knew it would actually serve to help her.

"I do carry a bit of dressings meself...I'd be happy to lend them to you if yous could 'elp me out with some directions..."

I that look.

Ash arched a brow, "That's a strange bargain for a Non-Dimitrois wolf to be asking of a Dimitrois and last I checked, the packs were still at war. And besides, I'm not hurt. It's someone else's blood."

Ignoring the flies and stench of death that permeated the air here, Ash started walking around the bodies toward Dimitrois territory. "And if you're wondering where I got these gems... I stole them, yeah I had to kill a couple of guards myself."

Ash was greatly pleased with her new lie. It would at least deter him from trying swindle her out of her gems for awhile.

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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#, as written by Krypt
Shamus

"That's a strange bargain for a Non-Dimitrois wolf to be asking of a Dimitrois and last I checked, the packs were still at war. And besides, I'm not hurt. It's someone else's blood."

Common concern, Shamus thought, generally easy enough to shoot down. Though naturally it was a tad more believable when here wasn't war casualties lying all about. "Aye, well pardon my civility. We Saffron don't like playin' politics you see."

As she went on to brag about her own theivery, the Saffron was already skeptical. Why would she be traveling with a bunch of Dimitrios soldiers...if she had just stolen jewelry? Perhaps they had been returning from a raid on another pack? Unlikely, but Shamus didn't want to spend too much time mincing words. He was already trying to dig himself out of a hole after being caught redpawed helping himself to her valuables.

"That's pretty lucky haul, I'd say...it's a shame good luck can't keep up all the time, ain't it?" Shamus responded wistfully, again referencing the ambush. If she responded favorably, perhaps he could start threading this conversation the right way. The setting sun was putting him on an uncomfortably short timer.

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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Ash

"Aye, well pardon my civility. We Saffron don't like playin' politics you see." That piqued her interest though the only outward sign of it was a flick of her ear. So he's a Saffron. She snuck at a glance at him before considering what to say next. I wonder if he believes my lies.

"That's pretty lucky haul, I'd say...it's a shame good luck can't keep up all the time, ain't it?" Ash rolled her eyes, Luck bringing wolves and their luck obsession. She kicked up a pebble with her paw and tried not to snort, "Yes, it's a shame... for some wolves."

*****


Silent. Quiet. Ssssssilent. Hungry.

Tasting the air with a flick of its tongue, sensing for its prey.

The giant serpent slithered forward, so quiet, so so quiet.

Warm prey was sensed.

Ahead.

Closer.

Quiet.

Hungry.

Prey. Eat. Hungry. Quiet.


*****


Ash had just glanced at Shamus again, "So, do tell me what you would have done with my jewels had I actually been dead." There was a tinge of curiosity was well as dry humor in it. Maybe she'll do away with him and steal what he had and barter it somewhere as vengeance...? No, she had no puppets to do the dirty work for her. Besides, it was amazing how she was still alive.

That's when she heard it. A huge vacuum of air that  wooshed past her, and to her surprise, felt a return of warm air. Like someone was breathing, but a huge someone... Fear skittered down her back and into her paws. Instinctively, the fear kicked in and the adrenaline flushed out any sane and reasonable thoughts she would have had.

Having gotten close enough to it's prey, the serpent'shead shot forward meaning to snap up Ash with one bite. But to it's... surprise, a giant block of earth slammed up from the ground and into the bottom of its jaws, snapping it shut and knocking it back.

Ash had instinctively reached for her element, and saved herself, but how she and Shamus will hold out now...?

(OOC: *In narrators voice* Who knows what will happen! Stay tuned for the next post!)

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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#, as written by Krypt
Shamus

The curve of a smile had gradually been forming on Shamus' face, only to immediately inverse as his whole face flashed into shock. An immense serpent had shot from undergrowth, black, fierce, and writhing. Shamus shrieked.

"HELLS TEETH!!!"

Too busy falling backwards to see Ash's reflexive rock shield, Shamus recovered at about the same time as the snake, which was shaking its arrow-shaped head. It's glistening yellow eyes reviewed the pair, seeming to notice the Saffron for the first time. Shamus died a little bit inside. He clearly couldn't outrun this thing, especially not in this sparse wood. But if running was a moonshot, fighting it would be like trying to land on a star.

The great adder began to recoil, the tell-tale sign of an impending strike. As it's head reared up for another go, Shamus frantically nuzzled inside of his satched for something, ANYTHING to fight this battle. Then it struck.

In a miraculous stroke of luck, Shamus managed to whip his heavy pack off his shoulder into the snake's path, causing the beast to get a mouth full of leather rather than wolf. The Saffron immediately pulled himself out of the remaining strap and scurried back to join Ash. Crouching behind a corpse of a fallen guard, Shamus panted out "What are you waiting for, rock wolf?! Drop an earthquake on it!"

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#, as written by Krypt
Shamus

Shamus awoke on his back, water washing at his fetlocks as he raised his paws in the air. Somehow, he had blacked out. Something about facing down death by adder before being hurled into the stratosphere. He experimented with his limbs. Nothing ached unduly. By some stroke of luck he had evaded serious injury. He rested his head in the water. The image of the great snake slithered into his mind. As the Saffron mentally recoiled from the image, water splashed against his brow. The image began to liquify, change, slither, until Shamus' fear of the poison toothed serpent transformed into that of a great eel. What if there was something in this water?

The irrepressible thought sprang into his head, and fear dropped to his stomach. As frantic as a pup on feast day, Shamus rocketed to his feet, and tore from the water. As soon as he was on the shore, he stole a timid glance behind him, only to see Ash lying lazily in the water. A snap was heard from the forest, and he whipped his head back. A snake in the woods, and eel in the lake. He had to get out of here. But where? He could hardly defend himself if that snake caught on his trail. He needed that Dimitrios shewolf if he had any chance of it. At least she could seemingly eject them again if things got rough.

Not wanting to enter what he now firmly believed was an eel-infested pond, Shamus shouted across the shallows. "C'mon, Pebbles! That trackin' snake is getting closer as we speak!"

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Character Portrait: Tiberius Character Portrait: Blossom Character Portrait: NPC
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Blossom

Blossom was horrified to hear from Chaz that pups didn't apologize to him, and that they played tricks on him! Tenneth pups must be very cruel and mean. This Chaz seemed to be very... weak willed. And while she and Tiberius were merely trying to carry out a favor, she really hadn't mean to hurt him... Okay, she did want to hurt him, just a little. But having accidently hit Tiberius with a rock, she was very very apologetic and swore to herself that she would never ever take her anger out on another creature.

"Wes ain't doin' no tricks, sir. We's just tryin' to get across your volcano. Its been a long way without wata', and standin' 'ear talkin' is just dryin' me out. You knows where we can gets some?" Tiberius asked.

And so, after hearing Tiberius ask about water she licked her dry nose and tried not to remember hurting her traveling companion, "Yes, we need water. And I'm really really sorry I hit you with that pebble." She made an emphasis on the 'really' and her ears went down as she nervously looked away from the downtrodden Tenneth. "I was just... We were... I mean... I'm sorry. We are trying to get to that volcano because..." She began to mumble and as if she suddenly realized she was mumbling, spoke up real loud again. "We have a message for a wolf. Over there. At the base of that volcano. It's really important."

Blossom coughed, a dry hacking cough that didn't sound so good. "Can you help us? Please?"

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Ash

Ash coughed and spat out any water left in her lungs. It was all she could focus on until Shamus jumped out of the water beside her and she yelped, jumping sideways only to slip and fall back into the water. She gulped down dirty pond water this time.

She got up, standing in this knee high water. Where there had been a passed out Shamus, was a frog. Did this scare him into scaring the wits out of her? "C'mon, Pebbles! That trackin' snake is getting closer as we speak!"

Now, Ash had been afraid when face to face with the giant snake, but now? Her legs were still shaking, and if anyone asked, she'd lie and say that she wasn't afraid anymore. Yet in this fear was still some logic and it told her the snake wasn't going to hunt them down. So she glared at the Luck wolf and got out of the water until she was beside him and shook out her coat.

"Calm down. The snake won't come after us. It must have been attracted by the..." She looked up to see one of the dead guards in the pond. "The smell of death." She shook out her coat again and started to lope away, "So I guess it's best to leave as fast as possible! Who knows when it's done feasting on those dead bodies back there!"

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#, as written by Krypt
Shamus

"So I guess it's best to leave as fast as possible! Who knows when it's done feasting on those dead bodies back there!"

Shamus did not let Ash get far out ahead of him before he was hot on her heals. The eerie thought of having death rub off on him from their recent cadever encounters made the Saffron wonder how easy they were going to be tracked. Snakes didn't exactly have snouts, did they? So would it be able to smell them and track them? Shamus sure hoped not. Though they did have those slithery tongues. He had heard rumors that they could scent with thoses as well as any wolf's nose. Did that mean that smelt their food all the way down?

"There is a stream not to far from here, stone miss. It feeds into the lake. I'm sure if we can ford it that great muscle with teeth will loose track of us." Shamus suggested, struggling to keep his voice level. He wasn't used to wearing his emotions out in the open, but it is quite the feat to conceal genine terror.

It didn't take many paces for Shamus to realize that it was growing ever harder to see. It had already been late when he had encountered the Dimitrios ambush, and now a quick glance to the west confirmed that the sun would soon be concealed beyond the mountains. The thought of being out in the woods at night with that black snake only hastened Shamus' gait.

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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Ash

It took awhile before Ash realized she wasn't running by herself. Shamus was following her. What was with that? Did he think it was okay to think of them as 'We' And not as two seperate wolves running for their lives? "There is a stream not to far from here, stone miss. It feeds into the lake. I'm sure if we can ford it that great muscle with teeth will loose track of us." Apparently he did.

Ash halted to a complete stop and stuck out her leg in front of where Shamus was going to step. She meant to trip him.

"You make it sound like we're running away from that snake together. Which we aren't." She cleared her throat, "Now, you may thank me for saving your life and then I'll be on my way. My very seperate, individual way." Her words were unusually sharp and curt. You couldn't even tell she had an accent. Was she actually being serious?

She raised her brows and angled her head so that it literally looked like she was looking down him. "I'm waiting." She suddenly started digging through her pack as if she was looking for something... or just wasting time waiting for a 'Thank You' from a so called lucky wolf.

Lucky wolf, you mean lucky I was here and graced with my ability to save him. Hehehe, I wonder if I could use him as a servant to carry my packs. She hid the sudden devilish smile on her face from Shamus.

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Character Portrait: Tiberius Character Portrait: Blossom Character Portrait: NPC
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Blossom

Blossom blinked at the mention of water at a bar and the idea that Tiberius wanted to disguise himself as a Tenneth just so he could get in. It almost made her want to laugh but she had to be serious right now! An adult. She had to act like an adult. No laughing, no laughing at the idea of Tiberius as a Tenneth. She couldn't help it, she cracked up, "Ahahaha! 'Berius, you, ahahaha, couldn't pretend, ahahaha to be a Tenneth!!!!"

She rocked backward onto her butt and continued her dry laughing that sounded like tumble weeds scraping her vocal cords.

Finally, after some time passed she choked back her laughter and with dumb grin on her face looked to Chaz again.

"Well, I-I-I would like to help you...but, but, I can't!!! Foreigners aren't allowed in the city!!! If they see you, you'll be thrown in jail!!!" Chaz said. "And, and if they see Chaz helping you, then I'll be in one, hot, flaming mess!!!" He cried.

Blossom tried not to laugh again and took Chaz seriously, "Well, the wolf were supposed to give the message to is over there and this is all Tenneth territory. So don't you think that wolf is a Tenneth? And they'd know of us, right? So shouldn't that be Okay? I mean we are messengers, very very important messengers with a message. If you help us, they might congratulate you for helping such important messengers."

It was very childish, but it did sound persuasive coming from Blossom who was guessing about all of these things.

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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#, as written by Krypt
Shamus

Completely oblivious to the leg sticking out in the dark, Shamus tread right into it. Or rather, onto it, as he stepped on it rather hard as he stumbled. Surprised, the Saffron briefly lost track of his paws before landing in the dirt. His own stupid fault for not watching for roots. Furry roots. He was quickly back on his feet.

"You make it sound like we're running away from that snake together. Which we aren't. Now, you may thank me for saving your life and then I'll be on my way. My very seperate, individual way."

The imperious statement was enough of a mood whiplash to halt Shamus' immediate takeoff. The lecture was absurd enough that for a moment - just a moment - Shamus forgot that he was terrified. He matched her strange posture with a confused glance of his own. He didn't exactly need her novice stone powers if she was just going to stop running. His way was the most direct out of this mess. Was she really this stupid?

"I'm waiting."

Yes, she was. Lucky snake. Dumbfounded, he watched her nuzzle around her pack. Briefly, he thought of his own satchel. Somewhere back on the trail, freshly injected with snake venom. It felt strange to not have it on. He felt off balance, and in some ways naked. The Saffron had worn it practically everywhere.

"Well...yeah, missie…"Shamus began. "Thanks for savin' my life twice, in fact. With you jawin' off back here, all I gotta do is outrun you, and my hide is as good as saved. See you later, Pebbles."

Without a second glance, the Saffron resumed his flight, heading towards the rivulet that flowed out of the Tenneth mountains.

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Character Portrait: Shamus Character Portrait: Ash
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Ash


"Well...yeah, missie…"Shamus began. "Thanks for savin' my life twice, in fact. With you jawin' off back here, all I gotta do is outrun you, and my hide is as good as saved. See you later, Pebbles."

Ash watched the scared wolf lope away and like clock work, pulled out a gem and began to admire it before putting it back. She wasn't afraid of the snake coming after her this late in the evening and it didn't bother her that Shamus was leaving. No, she simply cleared her throat and pawed the ground, pulling up the ground she sat on until it was just a slab of dirt, like some kind of dirt throne. And with a sigh, the dirt slab began to move forward. Even a novice like her knew how to speed up traveling with this maneuver.

So, in only a minute or two she surpassed Shamus  although she was heading a slightly different direction then him. It was just in the direction of the outskirts of Tenneth territory but slightly toward Dimitrois land, a roundabout shortcut home if one could believe.

Her adventurous spirit wasn't keen on heading home just yet, but she didn't want to be far from home. Or reinforcements. Maybe if she came across that Nova wolf again, she'd crush like a bug. Yes, for sure. She'd crush him with out any hesitation. Better yet, if she had dimitrois soldiers around her, she'd command them to arrest him and send him to the dimitrois dungeons. A war prisoner from the traitorious Ausi. The more she thought about it, the wider her newly formed smile grew. Until she was grinning like a fool.

"Oh." She stopped her traveling throne, to stop and access her new surroundings.

Far from Shamus, so far, she couldn't see him. That was all she cared about it.

She didn't notice that she had dropped a small gem along the way. An emerald.

What Ash did notice was that her stomach was grumbling, and she was alone. What to do....