Heron Lake Plateau Your love is like a car crash.
All Welcome  June 22, 2018, 11:49 AM
Towhee
Redhawks
Beta
If there was one word that accurately described how Towhee felt lately, it would be woebegone. She should have been looking forward to the arrival of her nephews and nieces, who were due any day now. Instead, she was worrying they'd be born dead or that the birth would kill their mother, so soon after the sudden loss of their Aunt Orca. And all the while, Screech was somewhere out there, running free despite the havoc he had wreaked upon the Redhawks. X was out there too, though, still scouring the wilderness for any sign of him, and that gave the Beta some cold comfort.

The sky suited her melancholy mood, with gray clouds blocking the sun and a cool wind soughing the blades of fur along her shoulders as Towhee traipsed around the borders. The sudden twinge between her legs did nothing to help her disposition, especially when it forced her to stop, sit and investigate. When she hiked her leg in the air and saw that she was now sporting two lumps—unmistakably testicles now—she felt a wave of despair wash through her, followed quickly by a scorching blaze of anger, the flames of which seemed to raze her inner landscape until she was nothing but a molten core on the verge of a nuclear meltdown.

-Signing.- (incl. mouthing + active signaling) | "Speech." | "Body language." (incl. expressions + passive signaling) | Thoughts.
Members of RHC are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me for reference! :)

June 22, 2018, 01:23 PM
Niamh
Redhawks
Gamma
Since their return, Niamh had taken some time to rest, as she knew she would need to regain her strength before she struck out to hunt for Screech again. Though she did not want to have to kill him, the task had lodged itself as a goal in her mind, and it wasn't one she could give up on. She just needed to find out where he was...And maybe she could lure him back to the pack- if he was still as out of it as he had been before. Otherwise...She might have to take care of him herself, and as time wore on, she became less and less certain that she could do that. 

She was so conflicted by thoughts and feelings when she thought about him that she found it difficult to judge exactly how she felt. Screech had been her friend- and at one point, she'd been willing to die for him. But on the other hand, he'd attacked Raven, and not only that, he'd raped her. She was his sister. Niamh had practically thrown herself at him- but he hadn't even noticed...It was just wrong. But she didn't doubt Raven had been telling the truth for a moment. 

Feeling worn out and grey, she headed toward the Roost to find Towhee- but she wasn't there. She could still smell the fresh earth from where they'd dug Orca a grave, and left- that was something she couldn't handle just then. She needed a distraction, so she headed for the borders, knowing there wasn't much else that could distract her as well as a patrol. At least that way, she'd have a task she could actually complete. 

She was pleased, though, to find Towhee's scent, and followed it along the borders, hoping to catch up with her friend, and even if they were both depressed, they could be depressed together. By the time she caught up, she saw only Towhee's back, and it looked like she was cleaning herself. She knew approaching from behind probably wasn't the best way to approach a deaf wolf, so she sidled to the side, and moved purposefully toward an area off to Towhee's right, stopping to sniff at a scent, twke two steps forward and then scuff the ground with her hind feet. It was her way of making herself known- without interrupting Towhee while she cleaned her privates. Everyone did it- or at least, everyone should do that, so it didn't make her feel awkward. But at the same time- privacy wasn't a bad thing.
June 25, 2018, 08:46 PM
Towhee
Redhawks
Beta
She could think of no outlet for her rage, save for the snapping of Screech's neck perhaps. Towhee very seriously considered rampaging back out into the wilderness again, scouring the landscape until she located and killed her brother. She put all four feet on the ground and stood, every muscle quivering with tension and intention, orange eyes blazing as she glared into the distance beyond the plateau.

That was when Niamh materialized, approaching at an angle in a clear effort not to startle the Beta. Towhee's ruff rose involuntarily, though her friend's presence actually took the edge off her waspishness. She huffed out a breath, trying to coax her clenched muscles into relaxing somewhat, though she couldn't completely manage. Her movements were a little stiff as she faced the blonde she-wolf, acknowledging her.

-I'm so angry,- she said, needing to unload the burden of it now that she'd been waylaid from her (quite frankly impetuous) urge to resume the hunt for Screech. -Just so... fucking... angry.- Of course, it wasn't all about Screech, nor would it be entirely resolved via his death. Towhee was also angry about Orca's sudden demise and ye olde bitterness about Phox being stirred up again by the nearly total destruction of Peregrine and Fox's final legacy.

-Signing.- (incl. mouthing + active signaling) | "Speech." | "Body language." (incl. expressions + passive signaling) | Thoughts.
Members of RHC are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me for reference! :)

June 26, 2018, 08:53 PM
Niamh
Redhawks
Gamma
Towhee didn’t react quite as angrily as she might have expected- she could sense her friend’s tension and ire, but was pleased it wasn’t directed at her when she was finally greeted and addressed. She turned to face her friend, a frown on her features. She didn’t know whether she should reach out to Towhee and give her physical contact- but she figured now wasn’t the time.

Instead, she plonked her hindquarters down onto the ground heavily and slapped her tail around her feet, mirroring Towhee’s jerky movements, as if to show that she understood simply through gestures. She did know- she too was angry. She nodded resolutely. -me too.- She signed. -we’ll get him. He has it coming.- she replied.
June 26, 2018, 09:02 PM
Towhee
Redhawks
Beta
Her friend mirrored her anger. The muscle in Towhee's jaw jumped with tension as she looked at Niamh for a long moment before saying, -It's not just Screech. It's not even just—Orca, either.- It wasn't really possible to stammer in ptero, though her movements faltered just before she made her sister's name sign. -There's... something else.- She paused, ears splaying slightly. As far as she knew, only Raven knew her secret (out of medical necessity), though Towhee found she needed to unload the burden on someone else: her Person.

-Signing.- (incl. mouthing + active signaling) | "Speech." | "Body language." (incl. expressions + passive signaling) | Thoughts.
Members of RHC are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me for reference! :)

June 26, 2018, 09:09 PM
Niamh
Redhawks
Gamma
Something in Towhee’s demeanour faltered when she spoke, and her ears turned back just slightly. Not about Screech or Orca? Her brow furrowed and a pained, almost fearful expression came across her face. She tried to think of something else- and wondered for a moment if it was her concern about Raven’s pups that she was referencing, but she got the feeling that it was something else. Something new.

She lifted her ears and leaned forward slightly, willing to listen- or read- whatever it was that was bothering Towhee.
June 26, 2018, 09:17 PM
Towhee
Redhawks
Beta
Towhee knew she didn't need to tell Niamh, -Please don't share this with anyone,- yet a sudden feeling of insecurity came over her and she couldn't help but make the Gamma promise. Once that was done, she took a steadying breath and looked around to make sure there was no one else nearby. She wasn't planning on showing Niamh but she also didn't want to be "oveheard."

-I'm not sure I'm entirely female,- she began slowly, thinking back on Raven's reassurances. Towhee knew Raven believed what she'd told her. But there was some intuition, deep down inside Towhee, that she gave voice to now. -A couple weeks back, I developed a strange lump. I had Rave look at it. She said it looked like a testicle.- Her ears folded in embarrassment but she forced herself to keep going, get it out there. -And now I have two: a full set. I don't know what it means—if it even means anything—but it's like...-

But her motions stilled, then ceased, because Towhee didn't know the words (in ptero or otherwise) to describe how she felt. She looked beseechingly at Niamh, orange eyes apologetic as she struggled to find words that wouldn't come and hopeful that the Gamma wouldn't turn from her in disgust.

-Signing.- (incl. mouthing + active signaling) | "Speech." | "Body language." (incl. expressions + passive signaling) | Thoughts.
Members of RHC are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me for reference! :)

June 26, 2018, 10:09 PM
Niamh
Redhawks
Gamma
It had to be something else. Niamh signed “Promise” as soon as she was bidden, and prepared for whatever Towhee might tell her. Was it about Screech? About Raven? About her? Nothing could have prepared her for what Towhee would say next.

She wasn’t all female? The first statement, followed by a pause, confused Niamh. How could someone be female- which to Niamh, Towhee clearly was- but not quite? She looked puzzled, until Towhee clarified that physically, she had begun developing testicles.

The thought of that confused Niamh. -is she sure that’s what they are?- Niamh asked, not wanting to doubt Raven’s authority but at the same time...This wasn’t something Niamh had ever heard of. Obviously, though, it upset her. She could tell immediately that whatever effect it had on Towhee, she wasn’t happy. -I don’t know. Maybe they’ll go away? But if they don’t.- she said, and shrugged, apologetically. -it doesn’t change anything for me. Unless you want it to,- She said. Naturally, if Towhee felt it made her more male than female, she’d adjust...But she strongly doubted she’d feel any different about her friend. -You’re my person. That doesn’t change.-
June 26, 2018, 10:52 PM
Towhee
Redhawks
Beta
She paused, then nodded. Raven had been thrown by the development, yet fairly certain of her conclusion. And now that there were two, the truth was rather incontrovertible, wasn't it? Towhee stilled as she (anxiously) watched Niamh process the information and voice a few other thoughts. Relief flooded through the Beta at her friend's reassurance that nothing needed to change.

-That means a lot,- she signed, -because, like it or not, something about me has changed. I can feel it. This anger, for one...- She shrugged, still not sure how to put words to it all. -There's nothing I can do about it though. It's not like I can rip them off, although I have thought about it,- she admitted. -And I'm still Towhee. I don't know.- Clearly, she was still rather mixed-up about all of it.

But she was glad she'd told someone and that Niamh hadn't reacted badly. -This is why you're my Person,- Towhee said with a faint, lopsided smile. Much of the anger had dissipated now, though it still lingered in the background. And there was the sadness over Orca's death that haunted her like a shadow, and would for a long time to come.

-This is kinda random but would you spar with me? I just want to get my mind off everything for a few minutes. Game?-

-Signing.- (incl. mouthing + active signaling) | "Speech." | "Body language." (incl. expressions + passive signaling) | Thoughts.
Members of RHC are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me for reference! :)

June 27, 2018, 08:31 AM
Niamh
Redhawks
Gamma
Later, Niamh might feel bad about how little this new development made her feel. Obviously, it was effecting Towhee quite a lot, but Niamh assumed it was just the idea of having testicles that bothered her, not the fact that it also meant having extra testosterone. Niamh was still feeling fairly numb, and personally felt that whatever or whoever Towhee was, Towhee would still be the same to her. 

When she revealed that they had caused her anger she did slightly clue into the fact that there were physical repercussions for having them, and she felt sorry for her friend, who was going through something very unusual that made her feel angry. She winced when Towhee mentioned ripping them off, and shook her head. That would not likely be a good idea- whether they were actual testicles or not, she didn’t want her friend to bleed out.

When she was asked to spar, she felt somewhat reluctant. Not because she was afraid Towhee would become super Towhee on testosterone, but because her own head wasn’t screwed on straight, and she felt very foggy. Nevertheless, she wordlesssly consented, squaring up her feet and lowering her head.
June 28, 2018, 05:14 PM
Towhee
Redhawks
Beta
Towhee sensed Niamh's hesitation, though she (perhaps selfishly) ignored it as her friend squared up to oblige her. Her orange eyes fixed on the Gamma as she got into position and lowered her head defensively. Although a largely negative energy thrummed through the Beta's body, an idea struck her that she hoped would alleviate any reluctance on her friend's part in the duel and perhaps lighten her own mood, to boot.

Without bothering to posture, Towhee simply sprang at Niamh. She kept her mouth closed, instead using a paw to swipe at her friend. And instead of trying to sweep her legs out from beneath her or using her blunt claws to scratch Niamh, the yearling instead aimed for the blonde wolf's ribs, hoping to proceed with a tickle attack.

-Signing.- (incl. mouthing + active signaling) | "Speech." | "Body language." (incl. expressions + passive signaling) | Thoughts.
Members of RHC are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me for reference! :)

June 29, 2018, 11:20 AM
Niamh
Redhawks
Gamma
Niamh had been willing to spar- and knew that it would likely be good practice, but in this sort of situation, she knew she'd have no luck against Towhee. Though Towhee was her closest friend, and she felt comfortable sparring with her, she also knew that Towhee outweighed her, and likely had more experience than she did, having been higher ranked than Niamh had ever been. In addition to that, there was the fact that Towhee was angry, whereas Niamh felt completely bland, and that would immediately put her at a disadvantage as well. Normally, Niamh would have been up for a challenge- but not on a day like today. Not when they'd lost Screech's trail, and had had to return home empty handed. But still, Towhee needed cheering up, and she'd wanted to get some of her anger out, so Niamh would never walk away from her friend when she was in need.

She was surprised by how quickly Towhee attacked, though, and immediately she tried to bound back and away from Towhee, whose unorthodox attack caught her offguard. Rather than actually going for a bite or hit, she swept her paw along Niamh's side, drawing an unbidden smile to her face, which quickly turned to a look mixed of delight and horror when she realized what Towhee was doing. Niamh was horribly ticklish, and wanted no part in that. "Nonononono!" She cried, immediately dropping to the ground as quickly as one might when told to stop, drop and roll...Which was exactly what she did. Flinging her weight sideways and toward Towhee, she aimed to basically roll the legs out from under her friend if she wasn't quick enough to jump over her or move out of the way.
July 06, 2018, 09:30 AM
Towhee
Redhawks
Beta
Before Towhee could contemplate whether tickle attacks might have merit in actual combat scenarios, Niamh dropped much more rapidly than she expected. She had made contact initially, yet it broke less than a second later as the golden Gamma hit the ground. Although a practiced fighter, the swiftness of it all caught Towhee off guard so that she did not have time to assume a defensive position before Niamh kicked her legs out from beneath her.

The joke was on her friend though: Towhee dropped just as quickly and much more heavily, right on top of Niamh.

-Signing.- (incl. mouthing + active signaling) | "Speech." | "Body language." (incl. expressions + passive signaling) | Thoughts.
Members of RHC are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me for reference! :)

July 06, 2018, 02:37 PM
Niamh
Redhawks
Gamma
Well that had been poorly planned. 

Though she managed to save herself from being tickled, her plan to bowl the legs out from under Towhee only went so well...Perhaps too well. But she hadn't managed to roll clean under Towhee, and her friend was knocked clean off her feet- and straight onto Niamh, who took the brunt of Towhee's weight on her ribs, causing her to exhale sharply and halt her momentum completely. When she went to draw breath in, she found that something in her throat caught, and it felt as though her windpipe had suddenly constricted. 

Niamh had had the wind knocked out of her before, and so, she didn't panic. But still instinct caused her to try desparately to suck in air, and cough out a bit if only to draw a bit more in. Difficult still, with Towhee on top of her- and the fact that she found the entire situation absolutely hilarious didn't help, as tears coursed down her cheeks and her ribs spasmed with soundless laughter.
July 09, 2018, 10:51 AM
Towhee
Redhawks
Beta
Although she couldn't hear her friend's struggle for breath, Towhee nonetheless reacted as if she'd fallen on top of a flaming hot stove top rather than a living, breathing wolf. She pitched herself sideways off her friend and quickly leaped to her feet. She pivoted slightly to look down at Niamh, feeling a jolt of fear when she saw the Gamma's erratic movements, not to mention the tears in her eyes.

"You ok—" Towhee began to press when it struck her that Niamh was only laughing. Feeling giddy with relief—she would've felt terrible if she'd hurt her Person, even if it was all Niamh's fault—she swooped in again, unable to resist the temptation of her friend's exposed rib cage as she renewed her tickle attack.

-Signing.- (incl. mouthing + active signaling) | "Speech." | "Body language." (incl. expressions + passive signaling) | Thoughts.
Members of RHC are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me for reference! :)

July 09, 2018, 10:59 AM
Niamh
Redhawks
Gamma
Towhee got off her, but between having the wind knocked out of her and an uncontrollable giggle fit, she still struggled to breathe in. She looked up at Towhee when she spoke, just in time to see her friend come at her again. Niamh’s eyes widened and she did her best to draw in another breath through a windpipe that felt like it’d shrank ten times.

”Can’t breathe!” She mouthed soundlessly, but amidst her laughter which tripled when Towhee started tickling her again, the formation of the words would have easily been lost. She flailed her long, limber legs at her friend to try and dissuade her, mouthing “Stop!” The whole time, but she could neither speak nor breathe nor stop laughing. 

Eventually, though, it got to be too much- Niamh forcefully rolled away from her friend and dragged in breaths of air now that her windpipe was somewhat open, but feeling a bit light headed, she lay down, still cackling. -I surrender!- She signed, praying for mercy.
July 09, 2018, 11:20 AM
Towhee
Redhawks
Beta
Towhee tickled Niamh rather mercilessly for a few seconds, though she relented when she saw her friend mouthing, "Stop!" and took several steps back when she signed her surrender. Towhee gave her companion some time and space to recover, all the while grinning a little smugly.

"We should do that again sometime. I now have a theory that tickle attacks might have their place on the battlefield..." Towhee quipped. She then shook her head with a brief laugh. "Thanks, though. It worked." Her mind had cleared and her mood had lifted. The anger wasn't entirely gone, though it had definitely simmered to a more tolerable level for the time-being.

"Now," she said in the next breath, making to begin moving, "let me express my thanks with a bite of lunch." Nudging Niamh, the Beta spun on a heel, heading toward food in one form or another.

Feel free to conclude and archive (or just the latter). :)

-Signing.- (incl. mouthing + active signaling) | "Speech." | "Body language." (incl. expressions + passive signaling) | Thoughts.
Members of RHC are welcome to power-play Towhee (excepting injury or death) for cohesion and continuity, whether or not she's an active participant in a thread. Just tag me for reference! :)

July 12, 2018, 04:00 PM
Niamh
Redhawks
Gamma
Niamh snorted and got to her feetl, finally breathing a sigh of relief as her wind returned to her. To Towhee's remark about tickling being used in a fight, all she could do was smile and shake her head. It had worked on her, clearly- but of course, her friend had only managed to get so close because she was indeed her friend, and Niamh never would have retaliated in a hostile way. Not many other fights could be switched from a spar to a playfight. 

Regardless, Niamh was always up for food, so she nodded and happily followed after her friend in search of a meal.