Ankyra Sound took it all back
All Welcome  January 07, 2018, 10:59 PM
Caiaphas
Grimnismal
Alpha
caiaphas was sure @Arrille was still following her as they came across the dark mouth that marked the grotto's entrance. in the sylph's mind, the grotto was a resplendent place -- its caverns were vast and complex, with some tunnels known only to her. it housed fresh water and shelter -- and in some distant reaches of the tunnel's network, sun even pierced the high ceilings and lent the abode a chilling and surreal aspect. the wellsprings that punctuated the basalt stone carried the dinoflagellates found on ankyra's shore -- and most of the cavernous network was illuminated by their presence.

caiaphas had missed the grotto greatly; as she stepped into its threshold she breathed deep of the brine and dampness and smiled, her eyes closed in fondness. it was the perfect home for her -- though perhaps not so perfect for wolves accustomed to sunlight and open space like arrille.

*_*
January 07, 2018, 11:03 PM
Arrille
Swiftcurrent Creek
Lambda
Arrille followed Caiaphas to the entrance to the grotto, and as soon as they were there, out of sight he tried to relax inside the caverns. But being inside didn't help much. If felt cold compared to outside, and it was winter outside. "You live underground?" he asked her. The only way he had lived somewhat under the ground was through dens.
January 07, 2018, 11:16 PM
Caiaphas
Grimnismal
Alpha
she turned back to inspect her charge, her eyes alight with the closest thing to happiness a sociopath could express. "oh - not just any underground." her voice sang off the walls and she cherished the way the echoes bounded through corridors deep and rarely trespassed.

"this -- this is The Grotto. this is where the nereides lived.." she paused and looked at arrille - he likely knew little about the nereides. "ah, before your time. big scary women. i lead them myself." the sylph smiled to herself as she continued down the mouth of one large, oft-traveled corridor. "it is a network - you could spend days down here and never resurface or cross your tracks. do you know what made these caverns?" she queried as they passed columns of ancient flowstone and ridges of bumpy, worn limestone. she didn't wait for an answer: "water. water has shaped this home over millenia, and now most of it is above sea-level. some of it is flooded, if you go past the cavern."

she took an abrupt turn as the tunnel split in two; by now very little natural light poured into the corridors and the going became quite dark. the air was surprisingly turbulent, for several hundred feet down sat the immense floor of the cavern, which was illuminated by small pools of the sound's water.

the tunnel slowly turned from darkness to a strange and eerie phosphorescent blue -- caiaphas expertly leapt from the ledge marking the end of the tunnel and jumped down into the immense cavern. the cavern spanned several hundred meters across and was largely smooth limestone -- stalagmites and stalactites rimed both the ceiling and the floor of the cavern, and in the center of it gurgled a large salt-water pool -- the source of the cavern's eerie haunting blue glow"and this is The Cavern. this is where saltwinter wolves lived. it is where i raised Lycaon, who you will meet shortly." around them evidence of settlement was present -- some years old, and some more recent. there were bones, long since chewed clean -- and in a corner, a cowl of desiccated seaweed and strange stalks of kelp.

caiaphas bathed in the pale blue splendor of her home, waiting for arrille to say something. she remembered the first time she had witnessed the cavern -- she had been so struck with awe by its alien design, its strangeness from the upper world.

*_*
January 07, 2018, 11:26 PM
Arrille
Swiftcurrent Creek
Lambda
Arrille stated in amazement at every turn in the Grotto, as it was called. "Scary...women?" he asked. He could not imagine that, the scariest female he had met was the heda at Drageda. Then he grew scared of her next words. "You mean you can get lost down here? Th-that's bad! I would hate to be lost down here."

And to hear that part of the Grotta was flooded? That made things worse, and he was becoming more and more tempted to turn back. 

Once they reached the Cevern, he approached the pool of salt water in the center, staring into it. He saw his reflection, and could only be reminded of why he turned from Drageda, and to Caiaphas. "There's....something else I didn't say before" he said, as he looked upon his reflection. He could almost picture his look-alike there before him.
January 09, 2018, 11:44 PM
Caiaphas
Grimnismal
Alpha
she bathed in the luminescent light, turning her needle nose upon her charge. he looked nervous. caiaphas thought he always looked nervous -- perhaps spending time with one as unpredictable as herself would eventually cause him to shed such trepidation. caiaphas could only hope.

she followed him as he approached the saltwater pool, her eyes falling to the brightly lit edges. his reflection peered back, uninterrupted save for soft ripples in the effulgent blue surface. "i wouldn't let you get lost." she imparted, coiling onto her haunches as the youth teetered over the bank. "what didn't you say?" far be it for caiaphas to sound encouraging, but at least she tried.

*_*
January 09, 2018, 11:51 PM
Arrille
Swiftcurrent Creek
Lambda
He guess that made him...somewhat more comfortable hearing that at least, that he would not get lost while Caiaphas was here. She then asked a question to him about what he had neglected to say. He dipped a paw into the water, rippling the reflection of his.

"There's...there's another like me out there. My age, or at least close...he hurt others." Arrille felt that this would be something she should know.
January 10, 2018, 12:00 AM
Caiaphas
Grimnismal
Alpha
the siren queen watched as the boy teased the water, sending gentle ripples slapping against the dark stone. the effect caused a shimmer of lighting in the cavern, and she glanced at the ceiling overhead which held the water's reflection in brilliant ever-moving dapples.

"another like you?" she repeated, only troubled by the fact that she had not gotten two for the price of one. him hurting others was inconsequential to the sylph, perhaps showing how hardened a creature she had become. all the same she was smart enough to know if he mentioned it, it was important to him. "hurt others? how so?"

*_*
January 10, 2018, 12:24 AM
Arrille
Swiftcurrent Creek
Lambda
He nodded to the repeated question. "Yes, he..he was the one that told me my father was killed...He is part of Blackfeather, from what I heard." However, he did not exactly know how this doppleganger had hurt others, only that he had done so. "I wasn't told how he hurt others...but I do know it was someone from Moonspear."
January 10, 2018, 12:27 AM
Caiaphas
Grimnismal
Alpha
caiaphas curled her lip at the reveal this second arrille was possibly at blackfeather. a pack the siren queen mustered great disdain for, seeing how their silver-tongued and fickle dark queen had failed to come to the sound's aid during war. for that, caiaphas would always resent the forest. and she was never one to let a grudge die.

not without the begrudged dying first, anyway.

she looked from the pool to the youth, struck again by how much he resembled his father. even at such a young age -- it was the eyes, she decided. "blackfeather? it so happens there is a tunnel - one we took years ago during the duskfire glacier war -- that goes a good bit of a ways into the valley, and the woods are not far off from its end." she paused, considering the journey. she was stupidly impulsive like that -- and contrary like that -- she thrived on conflict particularly if it was instigated on her behalf. "would you like to see him again?"

*_*
January 10, 2018, 12:31 AM
Arrille
Swiftcurrent Creek
Lambda
Arrille was immediately intrigued by this. "Wait...really?" If he could get there, before Drageda... "Drageda is going to attack them...if we go, we may run into them" he said, worried. If he was to run into them again, he doubted it would be a good run in. Then again, if they got there before him, he may miss his chance.
January 10, 2018, 12:52 AM
Caiaphas
Grimnismal
Alpha
caiaphas was unaware of any war, but the prospect of it immediately had her ears perked in attention. "attack them why?" she queried, pulling close to the youth. he was proving to be a veritable trove of information and she was glad he had agreed (albeit, reluctantly) to come to the cold stead that was the shore.

perhaps in time he would call it home -- for now, caiaphas focused on the present. "tell me everything you know, little one. including the name of the one you said is like you." she hunkered down on her stomach, spreading out on the stone like a sunning cat as she awaited his reply.

*_*
January 10, 2018, 12:58 AM
Arrille
Swiftcurrent Creek
Lambda
"I...I just know they are attacking them" Arrille answered back to the older female. "They took warriors...there was something about Redhawk Caldera as well." That was all he could recall of the meeting, before the chosen warriors left. 

"He never told me his name" Arrille said to Caiaphas. "Only that he looks like me...except that his legs look more sandy than mine."
January 11, 2018, 06:39 PM
Caiaphas
Grimnismal
Alpha
caiaphas considered for a moment his answer. news to her -- there had not been war that she knew of since the glacier. it was a terrible expensive practice, both in time and lives -- sometimes it was easier to just kill enemies outright the good old fashioned way -- time.

she thought of kjalarr's other son, wondering if he was still alive. it was strange how life worked -- she had not thought kjalarr a wolf that would meet his demise in a place like blackfeather. she shook her shoulders in revulsion - it was so inland. how any wolf could scratch a living in a forest was beyond the siren queen.

"we'll go to blackfeather then." she announced, casting a glance around them. "would you like that?"

*_*
January 11, 2018, 06:43 PM
Arrille
Swiftcurrent Creek
Lambda
He had to think on her question, and the suggestion carefully. "Um..." Finally, after much hesitation, he nodded. Perhaps, just maybe he would finally get the answers he was looking for about his father. And this doppleganger of his.
January 12, 2018, 11:44 PM
Caiaphas
Grimnismal
Alpha
arrille took a moment to respond, and during that time caiaphas swept along the den floor and rolled her scent along the thick columns of flowstone. she returned to him as he nodded. "good." caiaphas would have much to do before leaving -- but thankfully, many of the tunnels were still present.

she would spend the rest of her night configuring their route, popping in and out of various chambers -- and when she was sure of their progress, would rouse arrille in the morning for their journey south.

*_*
January 12, 2018, 11:58 PM
Arrille
Swiftcurrent Creek
Lambda
Arrille was not sure what would come of this. He would get answers, perhaps. But would he want these answers? These was something he thought on as he trailed off elsewhere in the Grotto, to search out the place for a spot to rest at.
January 13, 2018, 10:38 PM
Caiaphas
Grimnismal
Alpha
as arrille moved alongside her, eeking out some corner in the cave for his respite, caiaphas slid outside. the night air was cool, and overhead the stars bright against a clear and wintry night sky.

she tilted her head back and howled; a low, sorrowful sound -- announcing to those she had reunited with that tomorrow, she and arrille made for the south.

*_*