Ravenshook Cliffs absorbent and yellow and porous is he
All Welcome  August 14, 2019, 06:41 PM
Bat
Lone Wolves

In the days following her spontaneous confessional with @Tristan, things more or less returned to normal. To that end, Bat informed him that she was going to head out in search of more recruits. There were a few regulars haunting the grove now, though if they wanted to call themselves a proper pack, they would still need a few more hands on deck.

And she couldn't stop thinking about @Breccan. As a matter of fact, she'd howled for him every time she'd set out to scrounge through the territories along the coast. Reaving, she thought with a roguish smile as she approached the head of some jagged sea bluffs. She peered over the edge, undaunted by the heights, and began to pick her way down a narrow, treacherous game trail carved into the face of the cliff.

The going was slow. When a popup storm suddenly swept in from over the open ocean, it gave Bat no choice but to huddle in a shallow cavern as strong wind and rains drove against the seaside scarp. She was soaked within minutes despite the shelter but waited it out, nonetheless. She didn't want to risk slipping or being blown off the cliff.

The shower passed quickly with a final grumble of thunder. As the skies began to clear, Bat emerged from her hide-y hole, shook out her damp pelt, then continued toward the rocky strip of beach below.
August 14, 2019, 08:23 PM
Breccan
Lone Wolves

Perfect timing, I was just thinking about flinging him back to the coast!

After discovering that Nuna was missing, Breccan had felt a little lost. She had been a big part of the reason he had left the Frosthawks in the first place, so it was something of a blow to realize that she had departed without a word. Of course, somewhere in the back of his mind, he was aware that she hadn't known he was coming -- so she wasn't to blame for whatever decision had led her to leave. But it still hurt, and for a time he laid low in the territories near Bearclaw Valley, disappointed in himself but too ashamed to go home.

Eventually, though, he picked himself up and brushed himself off. He was a Frostfur; he wouldn't let one little bump in the road interrupt his plans. He had other friends in the area, so he set his feet into motion. He didn't really have a plan as to where he was headed -- did he ever? -- and he was somewhat surprised when he found himself nearing the coast once more. He could have detoured north to the mountain Yami was trying to claim, or back to the forest that had once belonged to his father but was now home to Ibis and her friends. But something about the unfamiliar ocean called to him, and he answered.

When the sudden storm released its deluge, he had sheltered in the wind-blown trees alongside a ridge; and once it passed, he stepped out to survey the beach below. Imagine his surprise when the first wolf he set eyes on was distinctly familiar; her coloration caught his attention first, followed by the size of her ears. She seemed to have come from a cavern in the rocky wall beneath him, and he began making his way down carefully even as he called out to her: "Bat! Hey!"
August 14, 2019, 08:29 PM
Bat
Lone Wolves

Her toes touched the wet, gritty sand at the foot of the bluff and she glanced upward just to behold the sheer, steep face of it, pockmarked like the surface of the moon. She then turned to face the sea, trotting out toward the surf with her wet tail flung in the air. Since she was already pretty soaked, she didn't hesitate to splash around in the shallows a bit, breathing in the humid, briny air.

After about five minutes of this, she returned to the shore and gave herself another, proper shake, flinging rain- and saltwater every which way. Her big ears were so busy flopping wildly that she very nearly missed the shout of her name. But she heard something and stilled, looking upward. Her silver eyes widened in happy surprise when she recognized Breccan.

"Breccan!" she called back. "Hey! Did you find your friend?"
August 14, 2019, 08:38 PM
Breccan
Lone Wolves

He grinned as she turned and greeted him, her damp fur in disarray from shaking out the oceanwater. "Hey!" he repeated, and though he heard her question, he didn't answer just yet; instead, he directed his gaze to the uneven terrain beneath his feet as he cautiously descended. He didn't have too much trouble, and he marveled at that -- it was as though his paws remembered what it was like to grow up on the slopes of the Sunspire, though he hadn't actually set foot on a mountain or anything similar in months.

Within a few minutes, he had reached the bottom and stepped out onto the sand, feeling it immediately squish between his toes. It was a sensation he still wasn't used to, and he paused long enough to give his front paws a useless shake before deciding to get over it and striding towards Bat. His tail flagged up over his hindquarters in excitement; the last few weeks had been lonely, and he was glad to see a friendly face.

His smile faltered slightly, though, when he realized he still needed to respond to her query about his friend. "No, I think she took off," he replied with a shrug of his shoulders in an attempt to play it off as no big deal. "Are you and Tristan still hanging out around here?" he asked, eager to change the subject quickly.
August 14, 2019, 08:48 PM
Bat
Lone Wolves

He didn't answer her right away, focusing instead on his descent. Bat smiled and waited patiently, tail slowly waving. As Breccan climbed toward the sand, she arched her head and nibbled at an itchy spot on her left shoulder blade, tasting salt. By the time she faced forward again, he had touched down.

Her smile flickered at his news. "I'm sorry," she said, injecting as much authenticity into the platitude as possible. Breccan didn't seem to want to linger on the subject, so she rolled with it when he asked a question of his own. "Yeah, we've actually decided to camp out in Coconut Grove and start a pack. It's called Margaritaville. You should come check it out sometime."

She thought about mentioning the fact that she'd been keeping an eye out for him for a while, though she had to wonder if that wasn't too creepy? Maybe she'd bring it up later, not that it really mattered. There was something she liked about Breccan, even though they'd only met the once, and Bat found herself wanting to get to know him better. Here was her chance, plus maybe it would heighten her chances of recruiting him.

"Gotten into anything fun since we last saw you?" she wondered conversationally. He hadn't found his friend, yet it had been weeks since they'd spoken last, so surely he'd seen some sights, met some new faces or done something worth telling about.
August 14, 2019, 09:09 PM
Breccan
Lone Wolves

She apologized for his misfortune with Nuna, her tone earnest, and he appreciated it -- just as much as he appreciated the fact that she didn't press for more details. She filled him in on her latest plans with Tristan, informing him that they had found a place to call home and that they planned to start a pack there. His brows raised; it seemed that everyone his age was attempting to lay down their own roots, from Yami to Ibis and now Bat and Tristan. He wasn't sure if he was ready to settle anywhere permanently, but still, he was intrigued.

"Marga-what?" he replied teasingly, though he really did want clarification on that word and its meaning. She shifted subjects again quickly, asking after what he had been up to in the time since they had last seen each other, and he shrugged his shoulders by way of initial response. "Nope, not really. I've met a couple of other wolves, but I've mostly just been trying to get the hang of this living-on-my-own thing," he quipped, though there was a bit of sheepish truth to his words.

He then decided to segue back to Tristan and Bat's prospective pack. "I'll definitely come check out your pack -- tell me more about it," he invited.
August 14, 2019, 10:02 PM
Bat
Lone Wolves

She sensed his sheepishness and sought to put him at ease by saying, "I know exactly where you're coming from. Earlier this year, before I reunited with Tristan, my cousin and I went off to explore together. I love Seq but I wanted to travel entirely on my own for a while, so we split. I was by myself for a month or two and it was definitely an experience."

Bat was glad to be back in society again, particularly by Tristan's side. Speaking of which, she replied, "The grove is an oasis. And we're going to try to keep a really easygoing vibe going there. It'll be a real pack, just a little more laid-back than most others. For instance, I still plan to travel here and there, though the 'ville will always be my home base." And let's not kid ourselves: Tristan too.

She thought about abandoning their current whereabouts and taking him back to check out the grove for himself. But having traveled on foot most of the day, then climbed down the cliff, she didn't feel like making the return trip just yet. Actually, she wasn't sure she'd be up to it until morning. In the meantime, she really needed to find some food to fill the tank.

"I think I'm going to camp out here tonight, then head back to the grove at the butt crack of dawn, if you wanna hang? I'd also like to rummage up some grub. Think I saw some gulls' nests on the cliff, though I could try some fishing too." Bat looked at him, wondering if he might have a preference, and to let him answer her invitation in the first place.
August 14, 2019, 11:44 PM
Breccan
Lone Wolves

Bat's words had a reassuring effect on Breccan that he hadn't expected; she spoke of traveling with her cousin, then splitting off to do her own thing. It made him feel better, though he hadn't really realized that he needed the encouragement. Either way, it only made Bat seem even cooler in his eyes, especially since she still didn't call out his self-conscious tone. She had obviously gotten the hang of the "living-on-your-own thing," so surely he would be able to adjust too.

As far as the pack that she hoped to found with Tristan, it couldn't have sounded better to Breccan. He was feeling let down by Nuna's absence, and while he liked being independent, he was sick of being alone, if he was honest. He didn't want to settle down, necessarily, but wasn't that the premise of this Marga-whatever pack? Like Bat, he could come and go as he pleased, while still having a place to rest his head at night. He was excited by the idea, but he reminded himself that Bat hadn't even officially asked him to join them -- actually, all she had proposed was doing some hunting or fishing before it got too late.

"Yeah, I'd love to hang," he replied quickly. He obviously knew what kind of food they would catch if they went fishing, but he gave her a quizzical glance and asked, "Gulls? Dumb question, but what are those?" Everything about the coast was foreign to him, and for some reason, he didn't have a problem admitting that to his new friend.
August 15, 2019, 10:26 AM
Bat
Lone Wolves

He readily agreed to keep her company, though he seemed a little confused about the mention of gulls. Bat laughed lightly and explained, "They're some variety of seabird. They're really fucking annoying and liable to snatch your food right out of your damn mouth, so I don't feel bad about eating their unborn babies." Her lips twitched.

"Gotta decide if we feel like climbing or swimming for our dinner," she mused in the next breath, eyes moving ponderously between the rockery and the pounding surf. "Got any preferences, Breccan?"
August 15, 2019, 09:38 PM
Breccan
Lone Wolves

She was swift to explain what a gull was, informing him that they were a kind of bird -- an especially annoying kind of bird. He laughed, then followed her gaze as she looked at the sea and then at the cliff face they had both just climbed down. Which direction did they want to go in order to track down their dinner?

Breccan would have been fine with either option, but when he heard some shrieking from the oceanside peak, he glanced up and spotted a few white birds. These must have been the gulls, and he watched briefly as one spread its grey wings and divebombed toward the beach, skimming lightly over the edge of the waves before wheeling overhead.

"Let's go for the gulls' nest," he proposed; he was feeling up for a challenge.
August 16, 2019, 08:43 AM
Bat
Lone Wolves

Neither option was going to be easy and either one would result in a tasty supperβ€”if they were successful. When Breccan opted for gulls' eggs, Bat merely nodded and began padding back toward the narrow pathway cut into the cliff. She paused there to assess their approach. Especially compared to a slippery fish, stationary eggs were rather easy to catch, provided you could get past the angry parents without losing your footing and plunging to your death.

Smirking at this thought, Bat began to climb upward. Although they had to proceed single file, she tried to carry on a conversation as they approached. "Stealth doesn't matter much here," she said, not bothering to lower her voice or mask her approach in any way, as if she had any option on the latter. This was not an ambush attack and the gulls would see them coming and launch their defenses at any moment.

For now, though, no feathery missiles came their way and Bat turned her head to ask, "You mentioned family at the hollow. Have you seen them since y'all left?" It probably struck Breccan as a rather random question, though Bat had been thinking about the Firebirds recently. Wildfire was dead and Kiwi was elsewhere and estranged, to boot. But what about the little brother and sister their mother had left behind?
August 16, 2019, 07:57 PM
Breccan
Lone Wolves

When she accepted his decision, he fell into step behind her, heading back towards the cliffs. He still found treading across the sand to be difficult, and had to resist the urge to stop and gnaw at the grains between his toes. He was actually a little thankful when they began to climb. At least his paws were accustomed to the feel of this uneven, rocky terrain; he realized that if he did decide to stick around with Bat and Tristan, he would have to get used to the texture of the beach, and quickly.

Bat advised him that it didn't matter if they were noticed by the gulls or not, and he nodded his understanding, although she likely didn't see it from her position ahead of him. She then offered a non sequitur and asked about his family at the hollow. Technically, he supposed he didn't actually have any kin left in Lost Creek Hollow, although Terance had been almost like a brother to Rannoch. "No; my parents moved me and my siblings to be with my mom's family southwest of here. I went with them, but decided to take off not long after we got settled there," he explained. "So I haven't been back to the hollow in a while, and I don't think the wolves that are still there like my parents much anymore," he added. He wasn't sure, but he had overhead snippets of his parents' conversations and suspected that Rannoch and Terance were no longer on good terms.

He had been focused on his footing as he spoke, and looked up now to see how far they were from their target. They were nearing the gulls' nests, and so far hadn't encountered any repercussions from the adult birds. But how long would luck be on their side?
August 19, 2019, 12:19 PM
Bat
Lone Wolves

Weirdly, it made her feel better when Breccan said he hadn't seen his family since hitting the road. She nodded, remembering his mention of the relocation and his subsequent departure, though she did not interrupt him. She focused on picking her way across a particularly crumbly and narrow bridge of shale before pausing to look back at him. She wanted to make sure he crossed safely, as well as address what he'd said.

"Because y'all left?" Bat guessed, also keeping one eye out for dive-bombing gulls.
August 20, 2019, 09:01 PM
Breccan
Lone Wolves

There was a moment of relative silence in their conversation as they navigated across a tricky section of the path. Breccan halted and watched Bat cross the narrow walkway, then followed once she had reached the other side and turned back to look at him. He stepped carefully along the thin ledge, knocking a few pieces of scree loose despite his cautious steps, but made it without incident.

Once the trail broadened again, she asked for clarification regarding his last statement. He didn't exactly know what had transpired between Rannoch and Terance; he had only heard his parents murmuring about it once or twice when they thought the kids couldn't hear them. "I think so. I don't really get it, though," he said. There was a lot more to the story that Breccan wasn't aware of.

"We're getting close," he then commented, because over Bat's shoulder he could see the nest just above them. It was tucked into the cliffside, although some twigs and seagrass jutted out into the open air. He gave another glance around at the sky; so far, so good...
August 20, 2019, 09:42 PM
Bat
Lone Wolves

"Some people really don't like it when you leave..." Bat said, thinking of Drageda and how she, her sister and their mother had been considered natrona for leaving. They hadn't just caused some hurt feelings, they'd brought threats of death down on their heads. Bat shook hers now as she recollected, saying nothing, letting the subject fade naturally.

Just when Breccan pointed out a nest slightly above them, a gull appeared out of nowhere with a loud screech. Bat nearly jumped out of her skin and might have peed a little. "Shit!" she found herself screaming, "Fuck! Fuck off, bird! Fuck off!" She shot her cohort a glance and started laughing even as she hurled curses.
August 21, 2019, 09:38 PM
Breccan
Lone Wolves

At her comment, he found himself wondering if she spoke from experience -- it seemed like more than just a sympathetic response to what he had said about his own family. He didn't have the opportunity to ask her to elaborate, though, because the tides suddenly turned with the appearance of a seagull overhead. Bat wasn't the only one to startle, as Breccan tensed and had to steady his footing on the cliff even as the bird whirled over them menacingly.

His shock soon melted into laughter as Bat started to shout obscenities at the seagull, which seemed to work at first. But as it banked to turn back towards them, it lowered its trajectory and swooped down near their heads, probably hoping to drive them away from the nest. Breccan ducked but didn't start to retreat; instead, he joined Bat in her taunts. "Get outta here, bird brain!" he yelled.