Qeya River outstretched arm, and upturned hand
All Welcome  September 15, 2018, 08:50 PM
Ingram
Lone Wolves

AW but @Wardruna is with him

the pair traveled, largely in a silence that was neither strained nor uncustomary. in their time together imrathil had learned to appreciate wardruna spoke with purpose -- and the gaps and pauses in conversation were a comfort designed to leave each in their thoughts unhindered.

little as he remembered, he was certain he had never been here before -- the frothy whitewater was a sight to behold, and imrathil watched as it snarled over heavy boulders and coursed in a thick, ruddy stream downriver. occasionally he heard the throaty growl of stones grinding underfoot; massive boulders being moved downwards by the fierce current -- and he also, to his surprise, caught the occasional ice floe --

ice floe? imrathil frowned, looking to wardruna for guidance. upstream the river coursed with a vulgar vigor, yet around the bend he thought he saw a flat floodpan that perhaps would suit them for crossing.
September 16, 2018, 05:00 AM
Wardruna
Lone Wolves

        ever since his first trip to these wilds where the common tongue was spoke in full wardruna has learned to relish silence. a lot could be said without words and it was better than embarrassing himself as he stumbles over the common tongue and all their words. the northern language did not have quite so many and one word in his native tongue could mean several different ones in common. it all depended, he'd learned, on how he intended to use it. he keeps imrithal to his left in her peripheral vision as they travel. he does it out of what he feels is necessity, liking to assure himself that imrithal is still with him ...not that he expects him to abandon him. still, it is a fear that wardruna lives with. despite his best efforts not to, the northener grows attached to his companions.

        they move alongside the snaking qeya river, their heading due west as imrithal chose. wardruna's not sure what they're going to find ( if much of anything ) but if he's learned one thing it's that these wilds are always in a state of constant flux. regimes rise and regimes fall ...it appears to be the natural state of life here. wardruna catches the silent question imrithal asks with a look as chunks of ice float along the river as they pass. "a jökull," he makes a noise in the back of his throat as he searches for a way to communicate 'glacier' between the tongues. it should translate easily enough but wardruna struggles to grasp it's common word equivalent. "big ice. what is the big ice called?" he's been to duskfire glacier before and he points in it's direction with a gesture of his muzzle, trying to hide his frustration at his inability to translate between the tongues as well as he'd like to.

your hands are wet
with blood of an empire.
you lick it off.
September 16, 2018, 11:49 AM
Ingram
Lone Wolves

a frowning expression buried his countenance as he watched the jagged ledge of ice float downriver, scraping and shrieking as it went by. wardruna had caught his look, and spoke in his native tongue the name -- jökull. a strong word, hardened and as carved as the ice that slid by them. imrathil's sights wandered back to the murkwater river, which spat a frothy foam along the banks.

"big ice.." he repeated dumbly for a moment, struggling to recall what the tall peaks of monstrous ice had been named: "glacier!" he exclaimed, though found the name less commanding than the way it was said in wardruna's tongue. "i've never seen them in a river before."

at least, he didn't remember ever seeing them in a river; and he was right, for no such river carried ice in its veins that he had ever known in his life.
September 19, 2018, 04:17 AM
Wardruna
Lone Wolves

        it appeared that the word that wardruna sought escaped imrathil too as the northerner's gaze flickered to a small chunk of ice that drifted lackadaisically past them, carried along by the river's current. it would nag at wardruna's mind for a while, especially if imrathil was not able to produce the translation but 'big ice' was a simple enough translation that imrathil appeared to understand. glacier. the word finally came to imrathil and wardruna's singular gaze flickered back to the ankyrian with a noise of acknowledgement in his throat. yes, that's it the noise communicates. "guh-lay-shur," wardruna repeats the word slowly, forcing his tongue to sound it out. the word feels clumsy and soft. "common tongue is so soft." he mutters his absentminded complaint under his breath.

        wardruna turned his head, allowing his gaze to focus on the ice floe in lieu of imrathil, though the scarred ankyrian remained within the edge of his peripheral. wardruna liked to keep him in his line of sight, in a manner that is not meant as controlling ( as it had been for his ex-wives ) and more for his own private comfort. those abandonment ( and exile ) issues were rough. beyond that, keeping his companions in his line of sight in some form or another was also merely out of habit. he might've pretended like he could still see out of the eye with permanent hyphema whose surrounding flesh is scarred but it was all a show. a lovingly crafted deception in order to keep the ex-berserker's intimidation level up.

        wardruna is quiet for a long moment as he pre-contemplates through his words. "i have never seen it in a river," he agrees with a soft pause, recollecting his thoughts and the messy translations crossing wires in his head. "but in the élivágar sea close to jötunn spine chunks from a ...gla — jökull — was common." the black beaches and icy waters of wardruna's homeland(s) was a stretch of territories that appeared to be plucked straight from niflheim itself and he thinks of them with a bittersweet fondness. the gods have barred him from them. that was the price of their continued favor: he could never return and he paid it. not because he was noble and it was the way of their culture but because he was, at his core, a selfish beast.

your hands are wet
with blood of an empire.
you lick it off.
September 20, 2018, 08:06 AM
Ingram
Lone Wolves

imrathil made no remark in response to wardruna’s sidelong comment, though a bemused smile fringed the corners of his lips. there were some strange words imrathil had heard the man speak; overall, he found wardruna’s nascent tongue as tall and as commanding as the icy mountain ranges it sprung from. 

he watched the slow passing of one such jökull, which choked the frothing waters with its dragged girth. he marveled of the distant lands these inimitable giants came from; and wondered then after wardruna’s home. 

”what was it like there?” imrathil asked quietly, looking then upstream where the current thinned.
September 21, 2018, 04:40 AM
Wardruna
Lone Wolves

        a familiar and common silence settles over them as they presumably each watch the ice flow down the river. presumably, because while wardruna watches the ice float and bob and choke it's way down the river his focus is not on imrathil — a personal if not subtle sign of trust that not many ever have the privilege of knowing from him. as much as wardruna fears abandonment he also fears affection, feeling affection. he desires little more than to choke affection out of existence within himself ...it chokes him in defiance instead.

        wardruna is briefly alarmed at the quiet question that comes from his companion as it draws him from the darkened path of his thoughts. and it takes the northener a few seconds to understand that imrathil is asking about jötunn spine. "it is cold almost all seasons," wardruna begins after a few seconds longer, inhaling and let it out in a soft albeit heavy sigh. "the seers say that the spine — a ring of small ah, ...moun...mountains that protect the pack — was formed by a jötunn pup that got lost and died. over time his bones became the mountains, his life blood became the river and his skin ah...," he pauses grappling for the word 'nourish' but when it does not come to him settles for, "gave life to the forest." probably wasn't the best story to tell children but the seers were not known for candy-coating their beliefs from the pups of the spine. "the élivágar sea is made of black sand and icy waters. not good to swim in but good for hunting big water prey." especially if one was looking for whales and walruses.

        "there is always war. in the pack and out of it. we fight to to ah, make our claimed lands bigger. anyone can fight to be leader. you fight to the death," wardruna sojourns here in his telling of his homeland. it is still sore, still the source of all his rage at the world. "and if you lose and do not die they do not see you as chosen by the gods. to them you are cursed. they ban...ish — banish you. and your pups and your pup's pups." he finishes more bitterly than he means to. he is surprised ( perhaps pleasantly so, strangely ) that he manages to tell it relatively well in the common tongue despite the usual stumbles here and there. wardruna takes a heavy breath and finishes softly, "it is a cruel and harsh place." and he misses it terribly.

your hands are wet
with blood of an empire.
you lick it off.