Dragoncrest Cliffs Clothe yourself with all the rough alikes
All Welcome  May 17, 2019, 06:58 PM
Approved Members

The cliffs held nothing for her now, but she couldn't bring herself to leave them.  As she stared at the place where as pups they'd played, Kiwi's stare had taken on a new quality.

This place was her birthright.  It should have been hers all along.  She would have been a Heda to be proud of, one who didn't leave to help others who she owed nothing to.  Alliances were charity she knew a pack couldn't afford, and any pack who couldn't defend themselves should fall.  Perhaps that was what happened here.  In the end, they hadn't measured up.

What better way to prove she'd surpassed them?

The thought of leaving her mom wasn't easy, but she had new family.  Family that Kiwi thought she maybe had wanted to teach, but no.  Wildfire's way of running things and wants for a family weren't what she wanted.

She wanted a chance to really prove herself, and this was it.

Kiwi lifted her head and let out a howl, letting anyone nearby know that this place was now hers.  She was taking it back, and she'd make it something better than it had ever been before.
May 17, 2019, 07:26 PM

a howl cut through the air, troublesome to any ankyrian soul that remembered the last time the cliffs bore occupancy. the siren lifted her gaze to the tall spires of stone, prowling towards the howl with a cold and assured purpose.

she came upon a she-wolf looking quite at home in drageda’s graveyard — Caiaphas sized her up in a matter of seconds, her slim muzzle pulled into a thin-lipped stare. by nature she was not possessive of neighboring territories, but it had been twice now a neighbor had the gall to cause her problems; better to vet out any future hopefuls, and if possible, kill them before any were the wiser.

who are you? the crone supplied to the wind, her hawkbit stare settling on kiwi with frigid curiosity.
May 18, 2019, 04:01 AM
Approved Members

It didn't take long for someone to come and respond to her claim.  Kiwi stared back at the woman impetuously, but she couldn't really start off by telling everyone who came to get lost.  Even she knew that wasn't good pack policy.

I'm Kiwi, she replied.  It was a little ineffective without a surname, but she didn't have one to give.  Perhaps she should make her own someday.  And this is mine now.  Only ones who are willing to follow me are welcome.  She stared narrowly at Caiaphas.  The woman seemed a little old and weathered to be looking for a pack, but if she was, maybe she'd be useful.
May 18, 2019, 11:23 AM

i'm kiwi, the girl answered; caiaphas flicked an ear, noticing the nakedness of the girl's name. perhaps she was not a wolf proud of her bloodline, or perhaps she had none. the fact she did not boast of her name made caiaphas suspect she had little to back her claim here; who was she, truly? she certainly seemed comfortable here, in a way that the siren suspected meant she knew this place -- but julep had been comfortable here too, and julep was certainly no dragedan.

there was an edge to the girl's eyes as she continued speaking, pointedly iterating that only those that had followed her were welcome here. caiaphas' tail twitched, much in the way a cat's might before a pounce. lazily, she swept her gaze back over the girl and sat.

"is that so?" she purled, wondering where this girl had come from and, more importantly, how much trouble she would present rusalka if caiaphas allowed her to stay. "the last neighbors we had were awfully tiresome. they killed one of our own, and abducted another. terrible neighbors." caiaphas' gaze pointedly moved past the girl, as if inspecting hougeda in a way that conveyed disappointment.

it seemed caiaphas might never make her point, but she did so then, hard and fast as a dagger slipped between unsuspecting ribs. "i will allow your claim, but you will repay me for my tolerance. you will give me pick of your pack's first litter. " she leaned in, the arc of her yellow gaze lancing.
May 18, 2019, 12:26 PM
Approved Members

She learned something important out of this, a fact that she hadn't bothered to find out beforehand; someone lived nearby.  This woman apparently had a pack, and since Kiwi had left before the mess all began, she had no idea who they were or what that situation was.  She did tense briefly when Caiaphas mentioned them.  Did you get rid of them? She asked, and her fur spiked despite herself.  

It wasnt so much the fact that she was angry.  It was the immediate expectation that this woman could now make demands of her.  Kiwi did not know what sort of strength she had backing her, but she was not going to start on day one by giving in to some random stranger's stupid wishes.  No.  I don't need to be on good terms with you, so fuck that.  Who says I need your permission?  This came out with a lot more assured pride than she had any business wearing.  She had no one to back her here, and that fact was just beginning to sink in.
May 18, 2019, 12:38 PM
Approved Members

With another of Stormrift having overthrown the Rusalka wolf who'd stripped its former Alpha of his title, Dacio felt it appropriate to take leave of the bay. It was not altogether safe, not while Blackhead and her dogs saw fit to make the coast their own, but the search for Ford had so far proven fruitless. Feeling that there was no more he could do for @Dalia there, the ashen Drakru began his return to Drageda's cliffs. He ached to see the sea from their vantage again, to feel Hougeda's halls welcome him home.

He pressed on ahead of @Opalia, for he was keen to avoid drawing attention to either of them as they neared enemy territory. To go on alone, quietly and skirting widely around the foliage that sheltered the sound, Dacio hoped to avoid detection entirely.

His pace quickended when an unfamiliar call went up, announcing claim of Dragoncrest, he bristled. His tail thrust out behind him and his brow furrowed above narrowed gray-green eyes as he hurried on with new purpose. Having not recognised the voice that alerted everyone for miles around that the cliffs now belonged to her, Dacio knew he could not let some rogue claim the land that meant far more to him.

He was not the only wolf drawn to the howl, as Rusalka's witch had arrived to intercept before him. Dacio's hackles stood erect at the mere sight of her; when last he saw Caiaphas, she and her group had invaded Drageda and made attempt to attack Heda. The silver yearling prowled in the direction of the pair, gaze boring into the siren's raven cheek as she made demand of the chocolate-furred stranger who suddenly seemed far less of a threat to him in the presence of Rusalka's queen.

Tell her to fuck off, he willed the other yearling to say, and smirked almost triumphantly when he heard her rejection. Dacio breathed no words. He simply stood there, seething and glowering in Caiaphas' direction as he waited to see if one (or both) of these females might turn their fangs on him for interrupting.
May 18, 2019, 12:40 PM

caiaphas expected some pushback; she was demanding something of immense value upon a complete stranger, and she was prepared for kiwi's rebuke.

 a younger caiaphas, more rash and less wise, would have lunged for the girl's throat then. kiwi had thrown her cards upon the table, and dismissed what would have been a fruitful enterprise. it was a shame, but the girl seemed a fool to caiaphas. luckily for her, fools rarely lived long.

did you get rid of them? kiwi inquired -- caiaphas did not miss the spike of her fur.. was this chestnut she-wolf one of them? she did not like that possibility. "i did," caiaphas answered levelly, seemingly unaffected by kiwi's rash refusal. "after i ripped the throat from one, the rest scattered. and that was an army, you are a single wolf." she was not an enemy to make lightly, as kiwi may soon fight out; it was certainly better, in any event, to have one as crazy batshit insane as caiaphas on their good side.

"you will have more luck with allies than enemies. think wisely, girl." caiaphas intoned, meeting kiwi's gaze unflinchingly - she was ready to fight, should it come to it -- but she hoped for both of their sake, that kiwi would come to her senses. kiwi had maybe seconds to revise her initial refusal -- caiaphas was patient, but not unduly so.
May 18, 2019, 12:50 PM
Approved Members

this might be the shortest lived pack concept in existence </3 rip!

Hearing it sent the blood rushing in her ears, but only for a second.  She was right after all.  They were gone because they were weak, but she would not be.

She knew that starting a fight with this woman right now would be madness.  She had no following, no stake here, and no knowledge of her forces.  But agreeing to a relationship where she fulfilled demands was not an option to her.  If she was going to rule here, she was going to rule on her terms.  Otherwise she might as well just go back home.

If they couldn't hold then they deserved it.  But I'm not them.  I'm not scared of you.  She said, though that last part wasn't entirely true.  The lie helped; it put some steel in her voice.  This is going to be my pack, and we won't owe each other anything.  She lifted her head, but her form was diminutive.  She was young and unseasoned; there was a likely end to this, but Kiwi had never been good at compromise.
May 18, 2019, 01:02 PM

phas out </3 (unless kiwi attacks!)

as expected, kiwi did not relent. caiaphas supposed that to be young, was to be filled with infallible boldness. she recalled she was once so blindly confident. life had shown her a different kind of confidence as she aged; a quiet, dangerous kind.

she flicked an ear as if lazily unimpressed by the girl's stubbornness. rulers and tyrants alike knew that sometimes, bending to the will of the people is what kept peace in times of danger; maybe someday, kiwi would learn the value of bargaining. "foolish," she remarked regretfully, canting her slim muzzle to give kiwi one last sidelong glance. "you have one day to revise your thinking. you'll find i make a better friend than enemy. if you do not come to ankyra tomorrow, we come for you." caiaphas hated to be a wolf of all talk, but if she had learned anything in her life, it was that diplomacy in some vein was important -- it was the lifeblood of nations, and to act rashly was to risk her head. while not much was at stake if it was simply her versus kiwi, if she came home ripped to ribbons again, she knew illidan would be immensely disappointed in her.

caiaphas turned her lean body to the side, unafraid of kiwi. it was a bold move to show ones' back to a new enemy, but caiaphas was ready if kiwi pounced upon her. "if i were you, i would not be here when we come calling." the siren suggested darkly, a hungry smile whetting her fierce muzzle.

unless kiwi attacked her then, caiaphas would make her leave at a silky, unrushed walk. she wondered if she ought to have just killed kiwi then, hid her body somewhere and forgotten all of this.. but then again, it had been some time since her children had their fangs bloodied, and maybe they could make a fun bloodsport out of all of this at kiwi's expense.
May 18, 2019, 02:27 PM
Approved Members

Assuming Caiaphas has left, let me know if I'm wrong and I can change.

Neither of the she-wolves acknowledged him, yet he studied them quietly. He glared at the masked coywolf, finding the mere sight of her alone chilled him to his marrow. Dacio despised her for all of the misfortune she'd rained down on Dragoncrest Cliffs, hated her and her wicked dogs for having saw fit to set up camp so close to what had once been his own.

And then to the fire-tempered yearling, despite the initial offense that she'd roused upon announcing her claim on the coast, had replaced his burning anger with some quiet admiration. She was a tiny thing, sleek and feminine, though she was far from delicate. Her sharp tongue was evidence enough of that, and Dacio pricked a dark lobe forward in eagerness to hear what colourful response she might have to Caiaphas' threat.

He stepped forward with a low rumble, sweeping to the young wolfess' flank to support her. While she likely did not wish for any back-up, he felt she'd benefit from it. It appeared to Dacio that she had not experienced Caiaphas' wrath; her promises, despite making his blood boil, were far from empty. He knew from experience what Rusalka could be capable of, enough to make him want to strive for more.

Remaining silent and steadfast, he fixed Blackhead with a fierce glare once more, voicelessly suggesting that she hurry along. When at last she made to depart, the young viper's muscles slackened somewhat, though the edge remained. "Branwoda," he muttered softly to himself, steeling himself against the desire to pursue her retreating form.
May 18, 2019, 06:43 PM
Approved Members

She hadn't noticed the boy lurking until suddenly someone was next to her, and she didn't say another word as Caiaphas left, but she did stand a little straighter.  Her green eyes burned as she watched the siren depart.  She was furious that the woman would seek to dominate her just claim here.  She had no right.

Sha she responded, almost without realizing.  Then she turned a little more sharply, staring at him.  She didn't recognize Dacio for who he was; she should have, but it had been too long, and she shared little thought for any of them but Sequoia.  

She will die if she returns, she said with conviction she didn't feel, because she'd said 'we', and... Kiwi didn't have a we. Drageda?
May 19, 2019, 10:33 AM
Approved Members

To hear her respond in his mother tongue was a surprise, and he turned his head toward her sharply with eyes that scrutinised her narrow features. Was she more than just some random stranger venturing through, deciding that she fancied the cliffs as her own?

He nodded to her question, then gave a simple dip of his white-tipped snout to accompany the soft "sha," he offered, and his expression darkened a little as he considered how she may know of his birth pack and speak their language. She didn't look older than him, suggesting that she may have been born the previous year as he had, but who was she?

Only two litters had been born to Drageda last season that he knew of: Tux and Silkie had recently departed to Trigeda with the others, Bat had vanished following Heda's leave to aid their allies while Kiwi...

Brown fur. Green eyes. Natrona.

"You've been gone a while. What made you come back?" Dacio asked, though bit back immediate judgement despite the offense at her bold claim bubbling in his chest once more; she, Sequoia and Wildfire had deserted them, thus forfeited whatever rights she thought she had.

May 19, 2019, 11:41 AM
Approved Members

Foggy rememberance, as he stared at her and agreed.  White freckles.  It wasn't one of her brothers, and the only others were Portia's.  I heard what happened to Nomi, and I wanted to come.  That didn't really answer why, but that's because Kiwi didn't really know why she came.  She'd been so restless back home, and feeling tied to a pack that showed her no deference.  

But they obviously failed.  And I guess you did too.. He did a good job hiding his judgement, but hers cut into him with that statement.  He obviously hadn't gone with them when they ran either.  Why not?
May 19, 2019, 02:47 PM
Approved Members

Her words stung, but he continued to regard her with quiet coolness. It bothered him that she only returned after Heda's demise, when she could've used the support long before. Dacio had been so young when Wildfire took her leave with Kiwi and Sequoia that he hadn't cared to unearth the reason why, though he vividly remembered how it made him feel. He recalled the anger and the hurt, the helplessness of watching his mother crumble as a result, and the bitter taste of resentment that never seemed to pass.

"I suppose we all did," he told her pointedly in response to her comment regarding their failure. If she wanted to go ahead and lay that out for discussion, then she'd better be prepared to carry the weight of her own faux pas. She and her kin were not the sole cause of Drageda's downward spiral, but they were far from innocent.

May 19, 2019, 10:12 PM
Approved Members

No, she thought.  It was impossible for her to accept that her leaving had been wrong.  She left first.  That was her mistake.  The only ones who mattered should have been us.  So why shouldn't she have left too?  At least her mother had seen fit to ask her to come with.  Kiwi had never come to terms with Heda's responsibility to the other branches.  In her mind, anything not Drageda had been other.

I won't make that mistake. she said, resolutely.  She'd left Firebirds but she hadn't been Queen there, and now Wildfire had other kids who had less of the iron she held in them.  They could accept the friendship with the Redhawks, who Kiwi saw no value in, and the lesser motivation of members who should be doing more.  She, meanwhile, would build something of her own.  Something that, when she told her mom about next time she visited, Wildfire would definitely be proud of.  Unlike her sister, she was leaving to make something for herself.
May 20, 2019, 06:43 AM
Approved Members

All his life, Dacio had looked up to Heda. Despite her absence through the earlier months of his life, he'd learned from a tender age to always obey his commander. She was his leader; her word could never be wrong, and so the ashen Gona was unable find it in him to think her choices could be poor ones.

That was until she threw herself from the cliffs, ultimately dooming Drageda to an unfortunate end.

Dacio understood Kiwi's frustration, how the pain could manifest as something darker, and remembered how losing his own mother had hardened him. It was at this moment that the boy thought of how his own littermate had taken leave when Kiwi and Wildfire did, and he pricked a dark lobe as his curiosity spiked. "And Sequoia," he mentioned, "did she accompany you?" 
May 21, 2019, 08:35 AM
Approved Members

Kiwi frowned at the mention of Sequoia.  No, she wanted to go see more places.  Kiwi answered.  She still wasn't exactly okay about that, but it was never going to be okay in reality.  She didn't hate her for it, she just didn't like it.

Mom stayed to run her pack, but I need a place of my own.  Where I choose who gets in, and who is worth keeping on.  She added, making it clear from her statement that her mom's standards didn't quite meet her own.

Where are you going now?  He seemed strong, and better yet, he was Drageda.  He knew how things were.  She could use a wolf like him if she was going to do this.
May 22, 2019, 11:07 PM
Dacio had forged well ahead, but with enough time, Opalia had eventually made her way towards the cliffs too. A howl like that one had inevitably pulled her in, even from her distance. Nothing she was scouting was more pressing than that. Although she did trust her brother could investigate it thoroughly, some curiosity simply outweighed, then--even with their enemies still near, or maybe because they were there. She would go too, swinging well wide and approaching from a different vantage than her brother.

But, her skin gave a prickle as she finally passed into the familiar reaches around her birthplace. Never had she expected to return so soon to its hollowed, empty stretches. Worse than that even, she could smell the hints of Rusalka, and others too, all unfamiliar--not Drageda, her senses screamed hatefully. The yearling was on edge, but determined to reach her brother's side.

Spotting him was a relief, so she slowed down and listened. There was someone else.. and it took her longer to place the distantly familiar coat-colors. Natrona. Her thoughts shot quickly to Sequoia thanks to this, wondering if they were still such good friends, but too if she dared to come back to the place she had turned her back on once. Even remembering them together was enough to ridge up her furs, and Opalia's mood darkened swiftly as she confirmed that this was one of Wildfire's daughters who had left them.

She intentionally approached the meeting opposite from Dacio to aim for Kiwi between them, and said nothing but with a glance at her sterling brother, ready to take his cue. Her body language said she was tense with a lot of question as she stared hotly at the red natrona--who dared to return now that so little remained.
sauntering in kind of late but i couldn't really resist anymore
May 23, 2019, 03:27 AM
Approved Members

In large part, he was disappointed to hear of Sequoia's departure - though not because he yearned for a happy reunion with her. Although he was far from experienced in all that the Teekon had to offer, he'd longed for the day he would feel his natrona sibling's hide between his fangs. A pity, he thought inwardly, and frowned thoughtfully as he wondered how far she might have gone. His cances of hunting her down were suddenly made significantly slimmer.

He spotted Opalia's approach, and the mere sight of her was enough to soothe his concern. Dacio didn't like leaving his back exposed in the presence of those he didn't trust, but the blonde Gona's presence made his confidence soar. His grey-green eyes sought her own mismatched gaze, having noted the sourness of her expression and rise of her furs, and canted an ear back to communicate silently that they would not be rounding on this particular wolfess just yet.

Kiwi could be useful to them, he felt. But he would never follow her.

"We'll go further up the coast," answered the sterling Drakru as he turned his attention once more on the fierce little she-wolf, "to set up a base and build an army. Our goal is to remove Rusalka from the sound."
May 23, 2019, 08:48 AM
Approved Members

Like Dacio, Kiwi didn't know the name immediately of the other wolf who joined.  She stayed quietly there though, so Kiwi wasn't bothered by her presence.  If she felt some enmity, it didn't bother her.  Both Nomi and Drageda had betrayed her first by not recognizing her potential.  She was no Natrona when there was nothing worth being Natrona to.  Her views since leaving had skewed wildly,  painting her the wronged victim in everything.

Kiwi almost argued, but instead nodded.  She hadn't had any desire to take them on their own ground... all she wanted to do was force them to respect her on hers.  But allowing Dacio to carry his plans would make hers easier, if she could somehow avoid being caught in some stupid rush for revenge.  They didn't deserve revenge either.

How do you plan on getting rid of them, she asked, to find out if they had strategized at all yet.
May 23, 2019, 04:37 PM
In still gauging this situation and attempting to understand what had transpired between the two Drageda-born souls already, she was ready for whatever her littermate needed her to be. A firm-faced guard, another set of eyes on the situation, or a sharp pair of teeth ready to swing and charge--Opalia could believe she would serve as any, or all, should any need call for it. But, if reading his glances served her properly, now was not yet the time for more. Not this soon, anyway, and as she trusted he would, Dacio had it under wraps it seemed, so she kept to herself.

But she would be ready, if that changed. Complacency had no part here, and while she was quietly watchful, perhaps seeming pensive as she listened, she was poised in event of that need. Her opinions were well-set, and little was going to change what she thought of the deserters that had helped seal the Cliff's fate in the first place, but going forward, Opalia was not going to see her last shred of a family tie harmed by their likes again.

Dacio detailed their intentions, and a new stiffness slid up her neck as she considered newly how this would effect them in the long run they intended to make. Their goal was simple, but how to get it was not. They were going to need time, and to learn from the mistakes their pasts had granted, plus plenty else. Right now, their plans were only ideas--possibilities at best--and she did not want to share them with a traitor.