Horizon Ridge You like to drink and to smoke to take away the pain
All Welcome  November 02, 2019, 12:00 AM
Nieve
Approved Members

Nieve knew it wasn't smart going anywhere near the coast, but the earth had been quiet for several days now and she was desperate for a sign that things would improve. More than anything, she wanted to go home, where hopefully Scarab and Marisol and Rosalyn would be miraculously waiting for them. She couldn't resist the urge to sneak a peek, so she picked her way down from the plateau to the adjoining ridge and worked her way to the highest point.

From here, she could see that the sea was still unwell. It still lashed the coastline in unnatural ways and the very shore itself seemed shattered in places, and that was just one small part of it. Being down there was still incredibly dangerous from the looks of it. Nieve was disappointed to find that she couldn't see Ankyra Sound from this vantage and therefore remained ignorant to its state, but she supposed she wasn't surprised. Rusalka's home location was very secluded, after all.

With no good news to bring back to her family, Nieve was left with nothing to do, so she sat primly on the ridge with the intention of watching her beloved ocean for a time.
NANOWRIMO: 201
November 02, 2019, 11:57 AM
Cam
Neverwinter Forest
PPC
he'd gotten himself separated from rosalyn. for some reason, cam just couldn't seem to stick to anyone's side. he was always drifting, going off alone, everyone else's pace both too slow and too quick. maybe it was better this way. maybe he was meant to be alone, and that's why mummy had. . .

well. best not to think of that, right now.

he was weaving his way up the precarious, rocky slope, occasionally stopping to watch the seabirds that flocked here. after receiving a well-aimed peck to his muzzle from one (he'd gotten too close), cam avoided them, instead concentrating on reaching the top. blood had welled in a crimson bead upon the small wound, unspilled; it stung a little. still, he carried on.

a figure of gold at the top caught his eye. he was breathless for a few moments—from this distance, it could have been khali, or even lana. the latter was ruled out as he found no charcoal upon the form, and it was too small to be the former. he was a little put out, but made his way toward the form, which eventually he realized was a female around his age.

she was looking out at the sea, eyes blue as the clearest sky fixed on the waves. cam cocked his head and chuffed, clambering up the last of the slope before padding toward her with steps made ungainly by his still-too-large paws.
November 02, 2019, 01:57 PM
Nieve
Approved Members

She'd been trained from a young age to always keep one ear on her surroundings, being a Rusalkan, so Cam's approach was noted before the boy chuffed. But Nieve had never been trained to be afraid, nor found herself in any circumstance that called for it; any caution that rose in her was a bold sort, the kind of apprehension one felt moments before throwing a punch. She had been taught to be clever and smarter, but never to fear. She didn't turn to look at Cam and didn't outwardly react to his presence until he chuffed, at which time she turned her blue gaze away from the waves and on to him.

A black-furred youth, probably about the same age as her and her siblings, but it was hard to tell without sniffing his glands. She didn't relish getting close enough to an unknown entity to do that, so instead she stayed still and studied him and his startling green eyes with something akin to interest. How did one be blessed with eyes so green as that? Nieve's were the colour of the sky and the sea on a breezy summer day, and she loved them for that ... but there was something very alluring about the jade of Cam's eyes.

Did you come to see the ocean too? she asked in a quiet breath, calming the shy thrumming of her heart with a slow inhale that brought the faint scent of blood to her. Would she someday be able to meet someone without feeling like her lungs were constricting? And where was the blood-scent coming from? She couldn't see his wound. It's still angry, I'm afraid.
NANOWRIMO: 277
November 02, 2019, 02:55 PM
Cam
Neverwinter Forest
PPC
angry? he responded, frowning in puzzlement and glancing out toward the waves. they did look quite. . .well, fearsome, he supposed. but then, they'd looked that way when he had first seen the ocean, too. cam turned his eyes back to the girl, asking, how can you tell?

she looked far more familiar with the sea than he was. far more self-assured. that really reminded him of lana, and that had him caught between sadness and irritation. lana had always been keen to do her own thing and had never had much time for the boy with his head in the clouds. he hoped the stranger wasn't the same way.

his time here would be rather abbreviated if she turned out to be yet another snob.
November 03, 2019, 10:25 AM
Nieve
Approved Members

Oh, it's not supposed to be like that, Nieve replied, motioning to the choppy waves and the whitecaps that crashed into the shore. I mean, sometimes it is, when there's a storm or the wind is high, but it's like that all the time now. Seething, was the best way she could describe it. All the time she was saying it, her eyes remained fixated on Cam's brilliant green ones. So green. So lovely. They were made all the more striking by the pitch black of his face.

Was it rude to say "I really like how black your face is" to someone? Nieve thought it might be, so she didn't say it.

I'm Nieve, she said bashfully, tearing her gaze away from his stunning jade eyes at last. She hoped he hadn't noticed she was staring at them. My family lived at the sea before. Usually it's really nice, calm and gentle. Dangerous, yes, but it touches the shore ever-so-gently and you can walk in the shallows and feel refreshed. Not like how it pummelled the coast now. Realizing she was talking way too much about stuff that Cam probably didn't care much about, she cleared her throat nervously and asked, so how come you're here?
NANOWRIMO: 207
November 03, 2019, 11:33 AM
Cam
Neverwinter Forest
PPC
she stared. a lot. he was uncomfortable by the way her glittering blue eyes bored into his own, and let his gaze move downward, toward the ground. he didn't really like making direct eye contact in the most familiar of scenarios; this conversation, about the sea and the waves with a stranger, was far from familiar.

so he focused on the words instead, trying to absorb the substance. seething. not supposed to be like that all of the time. cam glanced out to the ocean, observing the way it moved. angry. he would avoid the coast when it looked like this—

". . .shallows and feel refreshed." pause. "so how come you're here?"

he blinked, realizing he'd spaced out and missed much of what she said. cam looked at her again, sheepishly now, gaze resting on the bridge of her nose. erm, i'm looking for my family, he replied. dunno where they went. the woman i'm traveling with is doing the same thing. well, the boy added, grimacing slightly, i was traveling with her, but i wandered off and now i'm alone again.

i'm cam, he said shortly, wondering if she'd give her own name (completely, utterly having missed her saying it).
November 03, 2019, 03:25 PM
Nieve
Approved Members

Nieve hadn't noticed when Cam blanked out; she was too busy admiring the beauty of his eyes to realize that he wasn't listening to most of what she was saying. Anyway, he bounced back into the conversation well enough for someone who'd spaced out. Oh, are your family from the coast? Maybe I can help!

She didn't know the coast all that well, but she was always eager to lend a paw. If it meant she could take stock of the coast as well and report back to Rusalka, then bonus. Any status update would surely be better than nothing, even if it was just confirmation that they couldn't go home yet.

Do you remember where you saw her last? I could try to help you get back to her! offered Nieve, completely oblivious to what seeing Rosalyn again would mean for her own family. Then, because her mouth just had to keep running away on her, she abruptly blurted, did you know your eyes are really pretty? Like really pretty.
NANOWRIMO: 171
November 04, 2019, 08:19 AM
Rosalyn
Rusalka
Gamma
hope you don't mind ^^; I was already tempted!!

Now the boy had left her too.  She tracked him with mild frustration, but in truth, didn't mind the delay as much as she'd made it seem.  Despair had settled in, hopelessness that she'd ever find the ones she sought.  It made her indifferent and lethargic; added to the hunger, she felt a bit as if nothing actually mattered.  

When she had tracked down her most recent company, he had wandered up the cliffs to the ridge.  She meant to head east next anyway - it was becoming clear no one was returning to the coast anytime soon.  It took a moment for her to realize that he wasn't alone, but once that dawned on her, she froze.

Nieve's coat was a distinctive enough pattern of gold for the mother to instantly recognize it, but at first, she didn't quite believe what she was seeing was the truth.
November 04, 2019, 11:46 AM
Cam
Neverwinter Forest
PPC
he shook his head in answer to her first question. no, they lived in a forest, he explained. he'd point in that direction, but. . .he wasn't exactly sure of the direction. as for finding rosalyn again, he shrugged, looking toward the beach. we were traveling down there, so she might still be down there, he said vaguely. maybe.

cam was about to perhaps venture downward when her comment took him aback. he blinked at her, mouth slightly agape. erm, thanks, he said uncertainly, shifting his paws in an awkward manner. he didn't know what his eyes looked like. he'd never seen them. but his pelt was black like mummy's, and so. . . are they the color of a sunset? cam asked, a little hopefully.

if he was the twin of his mother, they must have the same eyes, right?

he was waiting for her answer, excited to hear her confirm what he deeply supposed, when the ruddy-brown form of rosalyn appeared below, staring up at them. oh, there she is, he remarked off-hand, jerking his chin toward the woman and giving her an apologetic glance.
November 04, 2019, 10:51 PM
Nieve
Approved Members

Oh, Nieve mused, I don't know many forests. She smiled apologetically at him and tapped her tail on the ridge, not unlike a man tapping a finger against a desk in thought. Of course she would still make an effort to help Cam if he wanted her to, but Nieve didn't think there was much she could do to guide him. She was seized with the desire to remedy that, one day. The next time she came upon a lost soul, she hoped she knew enough to point them in the right direction.

No, she answered, smile disappearing as she tucked her chin close to her chest shyly. They're green, like the greenest grass you've ever seen, but even more green than that. That was about the best descriptor she could come up with. Luckily, Nieve was spared from having to think of a better way to describe how green Cam's eyes were by his mention of "her". Assuming he meant the woman he was travelling with, Nieve stood and craned her neck to look down at the red-haired wolf who looked back at them.

Just as Rosalyn had recognized her and froze, Nieve too froze at the sight of her other mother. Even if Nieve didn't spend a lot of time with Reyes, who looked exactly like her, she wouldn't have mistaken Rosalyn for anyone else. But how was this possible? Her tail was the first part of her to react, kicking into a tentative wag as she disbelievingly asked, mom?
NANOWRIMO: 252
November 05, 2019, 08:40 AM
Rosalyn
Rusalka
Gamma
She'd convinced herself by this point her family might be gone for good.  It was a little odd that, despite looking, Nieve and the others were the last wolves she expected to see.

Cam was ignored for the moment as Rosalyn came forward, immediately moving to wrap her daughter in a wolfish embrace.  Nieve!  She was here, but... Where is your mother!? The others?

She was a little afraid of the answer, with all the chaos she'd seen so far.  Cam had lost his family, as had Fennec before him.  Was Nieve lost to the rest as well?
November 05, 2019, 04:19 PM
Cam
Neverwinter Forest
PPC
green? he hadn't expected that. it was disappointing, truly, and he was trying to picture a color even brighter than grass—how?!—when the girl called out a single word that made his heart stop.

then rosalyn was coming up the slope, calling the name he'd missed before (nieve, short like his own), and they were embracing, and questions were asked, and, and, and

cam turned away, feeling hot tears of something akin to anger well up in his eyes. the happiness that should have been there for the mother and daughter was absent; instead, he only felt bitterness that a similar reunion with mummy would never happen. because she was sleeping—no. dead. dead forever.

he looked at the ground, focused intensely on a small, jagged pebble so that he did not openly weep. still, a few wayward tears spilled over, darkening his already black face, and his muzzle twisted into a scowl.
November 09, 2019, 12:17 PM
Nieve
Approved Members

The last wolf Nieve ever expected to see here was Rosalyn. It was true that in their spare time, she and Reyes had been searching in the vicinity of Blacktail Deer Plateau for any signs of their missing mother and siblings, but it would be a lie to say Nieve hadn't begun to succumb to some of Reyes' pessimism in the process. They'd gone weeks without finding even a clue to their whereabouts, and yet here was Rosalyn, travelling down the coast in the company of Cam with his beautiful green eyes.

Cam with his beautiful green eyes was momentarily put aside, because holy shit, mom! Nieve pressed her head into her mother's chest and her tail wagged rapidly behind her. Reyes would be so excited! She couldn't wait to see his face when he saw his dam again. Mama's on the plateau back that way, Nieve said, pulling back from Rosalyn long enough to gesture to the south. We all went there when the grotto flooded, but we don't know where Scarab or Marisol went. We missed you so much! Erzulie would be so happy, she thought.

And then she remembered Cam with his stunning eyes and she turned back to him, and instantly her face fell. He didn't look too pleased about this development. You should come home with us, she suggested, tilting her head to peer at him hopefully.
November 11, 2019, 09:30 PM
Rosalyn
Rusalka
Gamma
On the plateau, that way.  Rosalyn felt the tension leave her as Nieve said it. Not lost, not broken... their family, at least the heart of it, was still here.  Marisol was missing just before, she recalled, but Scarab as well?  She pictured him and felt a twinge of hurt at the news.  Later.  So she and Reyes remained, and Erzulie.  It was selfish of a mother, but above all, her wife had occupied her fears.

You were gone when I found my way back.  I'm so glad you are okay! She gave Nieve one last once over, as though confirming.  A bit slim, but she too was gaunt.

Then, at her daughter's addition, she remembered Cam.  He'd given her company, and while she hadn't thought too much of it, her current relief made her do something surprising, even to herself.  She stepped forward and pulled him in as well, a quick, comforting embrace.

Until you find them, she said, with a nod.  Scarab was gone, as were Clementine and Marisol (as far as she still knew).  They had room for him, a stand by family until he found what had become of his own.
November 12, 2019, 11:49 AM
Cam
Neverwinter Forest
PPC
the ensuing conversation didn't help matters, even when nieve extended an offer to stay with them. rosalyn echoed it, bringing him physically into the fold. until you find them. his family.

if. if he found them.

he didn't want to stay with anyone else. he wanted his family. dad and ziggy and lana and mummy, god, mummy—

no, cam mumbled, pressed uncomfortably in the embrace. he wriggled his way out of it, too upset to find an apology, or any other words for the pair. with one fleeting glance at the woman who'd accompanied him, he took off down the slope, pebbles skittering out behind him as he raced away.

he would only regret the impulse decision days later, when he was lost and starving.
November 12, 2019, 04:52 PM
Nieve
Approved Members

Nieve thought Cam would be pleased to be invited along, but his response was quite the opposite. She supposed Rosalyn's embrace might've been overwhelming, but she wasn't prepared for him to issue nothing but a clipped response before turning and running from them. Her eyes flew wide as he fled. The look she shot to Rosalyn was helpless, confused, and brief as Nieve leapt after him, going only a few feet before calling out, Cam!

She skittered to a stop on the precarious slope, sending pebbles raining down the side of the ridge. A thick lump lodged itself inexplicably in her throat. She did her best to swallow it before turning back to her mother, ears splayed as she asked, I guess we should go home? There was no helping the boy with the beautiful emerald eyes if he didn't want to be helped. Nieve would regret letting him go, even if she hadn't been able to stop him; he'd seemed so upset, and that alone doused a lot of the excitement Nieve felt at reuniting with Rosalyn.

She made a mental note to keep an eye out for him while she searched for her siblings, too.
November 12, 2019, 05:24 PM
Rosalyn
Rusalka
Gamma
Rosalyn pulled back readily when he pulled away, and watched with reservations as he refused the offer and instead departed.  She was disappointed... but he had the right to his own way, and she wasn't about to force him to come.  With one last glance, she turned to Nieve, who had lunged after.

She nodded, and moved in to walk close as they went.  As soon as he was gone, unlike her daughter, Rosalyn dismissed Cam from her thoughts. She'd been willing to open her family to him, but once he refused, he was not worth her consideration any longer.  She was too eager to be home.

I can't wait to see it, she replied, but as she said it there was a slight pang as she pictured the sound.  It would be strange, to be so far from the sea.

It was for the best.

wrap this? <3!!
November 17, 2019, 04:06 PM
Nieve
Approved Members

Nieve wished she could say the plateau was splendid and a wonderful place for their family, but even the optimistic part of her knew it wasn't true, and she couldn't lie to Rosalyn about it. She still had siblings missing, and the plateau was just a temporary stopping point, and all of them knew it. It was no Ankyra Sound, but it was home for now.

Home was wherever her family was; as she turned to lead the way to the plateau, she felt a little warmer toward it knowing at least one missing piece of that family was here, safe and sound.