Two Eyes Cenote one minute of everything at once
godkiller; bleeding golden ichor
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All Welcome 
part ii of ??; a bit late on this but going to simply claim that ingram has gotten a bit lost on his way to akashingo, kek.

while kvarsheim mourns, unbeknownst to the hellhound, he travels, disheveled with windswept fur and a eerie fire in his eyes.

find the princess, find the princess find the princess...—

at some point, though ingram could not recall when, he began to mimic the voices of the commanders in his head out loud. their message rattles endlessly within the cage of his mind like a wildbeast starving to get out.

coupled with his current physical presence, travelled and ferally singular in his mission, begets a man nigh unhinged.

to make matters notably worse, he finds nothing familiar in this territory and knows, instinctually, it is not one that he's been to before. the scrubland is unappealing to ingram, but the nearest cenote begins to make up for it as he approaches. the water is dark; deep, he thinks; and though he could use a bath he, instead, simply sates his thirst.

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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#2
After fishing @Frolic out of her latest adventure (she seemed to crash into them rather the other way round), Dwin made sure that she was nice and dry and insisted on finding a den for them to rest for the night. There were some protests and arguments that she would have definitely lost at home, but out here she still had her ace card. They had a deal and Dwin had fulfilled her side of the bargain. 

Eventually they both fell asleep, each dreaming of different things. Dwin's sleep was restless - she kept waking up to check, if her younger sibling was still there. After all it was not all just the sense of responsibility coming from an older sibling. She also had given her parents promise to bring the little rascal back home safe and sound (despite her claiming of never ever returning home). Finally, she could no longer enter the dreamland. She carefully entangled herself from her still slumbering partner in crime and left the den to check out, what was going on outside. 

And good timing it was - she heard footsteps in the distance coming closer and closer, until a dark figure appeared and stopped to satiate its thirst. Dwin's body was frozen, while her gaze was fixated on the stranger, following his every move. 
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ingram's mind is consumed with the vision, with the message he must carry to toula that the fact that he would, logically, run into someone else but her has seemed to erase itself from his rationality.

so, as he raises his head to find the grey and white colored woman staring at him he is startled. water dribbles from his chin; ears flutter back to rest at half mast atop his skull, seaglass eyes furiously seeking and re-seeking.

it is not toula.

but it must be! it must —

where is the princess? demands ingram; always eager to be ill company.

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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Dwin was taken aback by the stranger's question, making her look around uneasily, as if the said princess would spring out of the bushes any moment now. When this did not happen, she exhaled in relief. "I am afraid I do not know, who are you referring to," she replied politely. She was aware that not all packs had the same structure as Brecheliant, where they had been running without an elected alpha for... what was it two, three months? If you counted the time, during which Bronco had been incapacitated. But still royalty to her seemed like something that belonged to fairy tales or very, very old times. Not nowadays. 

"Has something happened to her?" she asked, realizing that this was a very stupid question. Because if nothing had happened, then he would not be looking for her. "At least we - I - in our corner over at caldera have not caught sight of any child or wolf lost," again not very useful. Brecheliant was just a small pixel in the context of the big picture that the world was. 
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they do nothing to soothe him, her words. though they are likely not intended to do so, they merely serve to aggravate. frustration furrows deeply into his brow. didn't know? how?! logic, of course, would tell ingram that likely the many and more wolves of the wilds did not know toula but he is not operating in any sort of logical state of mind.

no.

his obsessive ( and likely more unhinged than he'd like to admit ) side is at the wheel; carelessly swerving at high speeds he can't hope to control.

ingram almost doesn't hear her following question through the splintered, sharp edges of his own thoughts. of the vision digging in it's teeth; a ticking time bomb he is burdened with carrying.

not yet, it comes out as a choked whisper of a thing; awful and worried; for as bad as ingram was he does care for toula, who was once, briefly, under his tutelage. but it will. unless he stopped it. he had to stop it! failure here, was not an option.

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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#6
Ever had a feeling as if you can literally feel someone else's life just happening right next to you, but you are locked out of it? Dwin felt exactly like that. The man did not throw words around easily, but the very few he said, the tone, how he said them and his general demeanor told that there was a whole lot going on than he was letting on. She furrowed her brow, selfishly not enjoying the idea that she was not at the center of the story and at the same time very curious to find out more. 

"Who is planning to harm her?" she asked. "Is it another hellcat wandering in the wilds? We had two packmates attacked and one of them died," she explained, turning her head to take notice of, whether Frolic was still, where she had left her. Faint, but familiar sound of breathing told her that she was. "Or is it a kidnapping thing with cannibalistic tendences and blood curse rituals involved?" after all you heard stories about all kinds of crazies running around in this world. 
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the feather! the blood! the stony bodies of the fallen —

would ingram have been a sentimental, feeling sort of man he might've shivered at the ghost of a vision; haunting him.

but he is not spooked by the vision itself, nor necessarily the lives taken in it.

but he is spooked for toula's sake; worried, perhaps, that she would be among them.

wh — he chokes on the word; startled out of his thoughts at the rather specific question that followed the hellcat one. for a wild moment, he almost laughs. but sobers in the next heartbeat. because, well, he couldn't quite say no, could he?

how oddly specific. for a moment, the spell of ma'at appears to be broken. maybe... he hedges with a somberness that relays that he isn't exactly ruling it out. the gods are never quite so ...detailed... in their messages, he does not necessarily mean to tell her that he is a conduit between mortals and divinity; but he does.

and he cannot surely take it back, regardless of how she views him for it.

it wasn't as if he truly cared.

regardless, he continues on a hiss of a breath. her and her people could be in grave danger. that ma'at promised.

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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For a moment there Dwin worried that this guy would assume that Brecheliant was dealing with the extreme and bloodthirsty cultish behavior and she was tempted to add that - no worries, their pack never engaged in this. But she did not say anything, because she was getting a sense that this guy might be a bit paranoid. Anything she would add on the matter would make him more suspicious of her than before. 

Then he mentioned gods talking to him and hint of understanding crossed Dwin's features, followed by sympathy and patience one offers to an insane and confounded person. She was not going to tease him or rebuke him - no, nothing like that. Crazy people had to be treated with kindness and politely. After all of them two he had the advantage in body mass and strength. 

"So, gods told you only of grave danger and did not mean anything specific at all?" she asked him. "Not time frame? Or... even a hint of, what that danger could be? From other people or the elements?" 
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ingram is defensive, immediately, though she has given him no real reason to be so. she had simply asked a question, but he is by nature rankled by questions assuming them to be all be barbed with skepticism.

it is not my place to question, he speaks this as if it's the most obvious thing in the world. they show me what i am meant to see, what i am meant to deliver.

perhaps the filling in of what was left out was self-given prophecy.

i was shown enough. corpses of the dead, the choking breaths of the dying. carnage. but what caused it: physical or biological warfare was beyond him. not for him to know, he believed. how it will happen does not mean as much as why.

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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#10
Not only was the man crazy, he had a twisted imagination and a cultish behaviour. Dwin felt both impressed and a bit worried at the same time. Up until this moment, she had heard about weirdos, but they had been just as real to her as unicorns. Imaginary characters, occasionally villains, more often - harmless idiots. This man was very real and could only be described as... as... potentially dangerous fool. He believed his fairy-tales and this - according to Dwin - was not right. 

"Why are you so sure that the gods gave you that message instead of something that your imagination cooked up during the early hours of the morning?" she asked curiously. "I have to admit that I am not a woman of faith and I do not judge anyone else, who have this special connection with the diving, except... if we are miniature reflections of, what gods are, wouldn't that mean that all our good traits and flaws are also multiplied to the extreme? What if the god of yours is wrong?" she asked, curious to hear his explanation. If he managed to pull forward good arguments, she would add to his three word description another one. Convincing. 
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simple, ingram replies. i am not very imaginative. perhaps it'd have been easier to believe if he'd have been the same as he was a teenager: sullen, stony. no where as near as talkative as he was these days.

but, he rather liked the sound of his own voice.

nor do i dream unless it's a vision. they are so very rare for me. dreams. no, he 'speaks' with the gods of whom he is linked with in a very different manner, much preferring his threadbones.

who said anything about is being reflections of the gods? ingram counters coyly. given the gods that i have come to know ... i would argue i am not their reflection at all. at least, in the physical sense. the dreadfather wasn't even actually corporeal, though ingram had acted as his vessel for some time and the others ... well he wasn't sure what they looked like, in truth.

she might very well be wrong, ingram does not disagree, though a twitch of his shoulder lets it be known he is not so comfortable doubting ma'at. but my instinct and the dread that lingers in my chest tells me she is not.

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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"Have you ever engaged in an idea that the very fact you believe in gods means that you have imagination?" Dwin challenged the man, not really hoping that he would begin to doubt his iron-clad conviction. Rather she wanted to see him prove her wrong. Even if he was completely mad, he could express his ideas quite logically. There was certain structure too. 

"Because a person without a creative spark at all - an awful creature I am sure - they would simply exist. Not plan, not look into the future. Not reflect about the past. Just eat, sleep and eventually die,"
she gave him a quizzical smile. "Dreams - as rare as they are to you - are also a proof that your imagination is working. If gods meddle with it, then..." she left the sentence hanging. 

"Are you a fearful person by nature?" she asked. "Meaning - do you get scared easily?" she went on. Dwin was not taunting him. Just curious.
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no. the answer comes swiftly; like a cobra strike. the idea that he was imaginative by any means was ... laughable. they are not my gods. only gods i have ...stolen, that i have chosen to worship myself but that have been shown to me by another. not original to him by any means.

i see what you are trying to do, a wily grin flashes his teeth for a moment before his resting bitch face returns. but my imagination alone is not — cannot be responsible for what i have heard. what i have witnessed. what i have become when i welcomed a god into my body to use as their vessel.

i have known divinity. what could i possibly fear?

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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When Dwin had been little, she had really liked that wolf-equivalent story of Peter Pan about wolf-pups, stolen by fairies and never growing up. Adult life then had seemed so god-awfully boring compared to the daily adventures she had in her own trench labyrinth right next to the rendezvou's site. Besides she had observed that adults did not know, how to play properly. With the same awe and gusto kids did. They tried, but you knew that they pretended. Thus - she had on multiple occasions declared that she will never want to grow up. 

Now, looking at this grown-up man, who was a mix of a tall-dark-mysterious stranger and malevolent beast, she realized, that he was an adult, who had never mentally grown up. Rather than facing reality and challenging myths and falsehoods with critical eye and thinking, he was interpreting fruits of his overactive imagination as messages of gods. Worse - he even thought that there were two souls inhabiting his mortal shell - his and that of his god's. While was a very unique specimen and Dwin felt glad that she had met him, she also knew that she would be even happier to see him off on his way. Soon. His twisted imagination repulsed her. 

But not yet, because in is delirious speech he had mentioned some really interesting ideas. Such as... "So, how do you steal a god? You lure it in," by dancing naked in the moonlight "And how do you welcome a god inside your body? Isn't it difficult? Because I sometimes feel that even my active mind is too big for my skin."
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it's rather simple, drawls ingram. you simply worship them as your own, as if they've always been yours. he can hear his words dripping with pretentiousness; but he has known many gods and taken each as his own and so he simply assumes it is easy.

by performing a ritual. a simple answer for a not-so-simple question; a ritual in which he did not care to spill the details of.

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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"Yeah, worship would not work for me - my knees are too stiff for me to crouch and bow in front of anyone," Dwin said with a sly glint in her eyes. She was tempted to add that as a goddess herself she was not meant to worship those made of the same tree, but she did not think that the man would welcome this truth well. He would rather think her mocking him. And - yes - she considered him crazy and short-sighted and incredibly naive, but if he was happy in this imaginary world of his that he had created, who was she to judge, right?

"What do you mean - worship them as yours? As yours what? Yourself, your family members? Your lover?" she paused to lean to the side and scratch her ear and shake her head two times. "And that ritual of yours - isn't it akin' to hunting a bit? You just outwit them and bound them to you? What if they do not want to be with you, huh? Is "free will" a concept of gods?" she asked.
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she asks too many questions.

and ingram is reminded, perhaps drolly, of the child sven and all his questions.

you think way too much into this, ingram speaks; frankly. no, he rather thought she was dissecting it and his well of wiry amusement was running quickly dry. i worship them as my gods. it was, in and of itself an answer.


at least, this is what he was sticking to.

he gives a roll of his shoulders, a physical sign that he patience was beginning to rapidly wane.

no, he sighs. you cannot bind a god to you. they must choose you.

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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"Well, life would be very dull, if I did not think a lot at all," Dwin shot back, feeling slightly insulted by the way he had said this. As if critical thinking, which was one of her most prized qualities, was a flaw or imperfection of sorts. "But I agree that my life would probably be a lot simpler, if I did not think so much and just..." followed, whatever moronic thought comes to my mind or someone else tells me! "...live, I guess. Thinking too much can slow you down." He could take it as a compliment, an insult or her admission of him being right. 

"But don't you think blindly worshipping them, no-questions-asked do-as-I-told-you kind of worshipping could endanger your livelihood? I mean, you are useful to gods as long as you are alive, aren't you? Since - I assume - your particular breed of gods do not have a solid corporeal form and therefore their opportunities to interact with the living are somewhat limited? Say - they can talk to you only," oh, god, well, that would be awful, wouldn't it. Talking to the only crazy person you have managed to make a connection with and they turn out to be... boring. Makes you feel sorry for them...

"What kind of ritual did you do to make them choose you? How did you convince that out of thousands of fellows, who have done the same ritual at some point, you were the best suited for the job?"
she asked, genuinely curious. "Asking for a friend - you never know, how a godly interference may come handy for you!"
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to explain it, to give his faith — as ever changing as the sea — words felt like he was grossly understating it. perhaps even, insulting it. no. he says simply to her question of endangering his livelihood. thus far, in his life, the only danger to him had been ... himself. not gods.

i am far from the only one who communes with the gods. he is quick to tell her, thinking of his ( first ) ex-wife and the priest and priestesses of akashingo.

i didn't make the dreadfather do anything, ingram corrects. i imagine it had to do with my leader, at the time. she was a conduit for the gods, herself.

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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#20
"Oh, I am so sorry. I have heard that it runs in the family," Dwin blurted out and facepalmed mentally, when she had spoken her mind without filters for the n-teenth time during this conversation. She had thought about, what a curse madness was and him mentioning others, who heard voices or considered themselves to be gods coincided. Him being him, he would probably disregard the first part of the sentence as someone not as smart as him (she had a feeling that them not having high opinion of one another was mutual). And as for the second - he could always correct her, if he chose to do so. 

"That was not the question. Why did Dreadfather choose you out of all the hundreds of equally worthy subjects to talk with?" she asked again. "Or they keep it a secret. Tell you that you are special?" which, in her opinion, was very appealing, if you had very low self-esteem, but could also lead to you being controlled and manipulated. 
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her joke goes over ingram's head and he pauses for a moment, mind reeling and the gears turning rapidly to try to make sense. family? he had no recognized family; not anymore. worst part, she wasn't wrong. praimfaya had heard the voices of the past commanders, too. only she called them for what they were: their ancestors. ingram, in a desperate attempt to distance himself as much as possible from his mother's culture, chose to call them something else.

still, her joke hits a little too close to home and a fierce scowl darkens his scarred visage; though he gives no words of either confirmation or denial.

I do not know, replies ingram, truthfully. i didn't ask, didn't question. in a way that has been truly him for a long time, he had been a blind follower of the listener and her faith. the iron guardian and nothing more.

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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Nope. Dwin's blunder had hit the man right in the face, because his expression changed. That scowl of his could burn her on the spot and leave a pile of ashes. At least it felt that way. She had not wished to insult him, despite her thinking that he was a bit unhinged. 

He admitted not knowing the reasons behind him being chosen by the Dreadfather and he appeared to be confused by the notion that he should have asked anything. Perhaps, this was truly the first time he had ever thought about this and Dwin allowed herself to feel a little bit of smugness for seeding that doubt in him. Even if he left and continued to follow wholeheartedly, that question would not go anywhere. Some thoughts are like that - you cannot get rid of them, no matter, how hard you try. 

"Well, it would not hurt to ask next time he speaks to you," she advised him. "After all, you have probably been a faithful and loyal servant for a long time, maybe you are the only one that the Dreadfather can communicate with effectively. I don't think that the question would change things between you, but honesty - I have heard - helps to deepen the connection," she told. Worked with people, there was no reason, why it should not work with gods either. 

"But then again - I am just a stranger, who tends to drown people in questions,"
she chuckled. "Maybe that is one of the reasons, why gods avoid me. I would never get any job done." 
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we have not spoken in some time, the dreadfather and i. ingram admits, thinking and not sharing that this is probably a good thing. even if, in the end, the dreadfather just kept being replaced by whatever shiny, new deity caught ingram's attention.

the hellhound draws in a breath, deep, this time. letting the chilly air linger in his lungs before he pushes it out in a relieving exhale.

many questions. ingram parrots in agreement, a ghost of a wily grin tugging at the edges of his scarred lips. there and gone before it could truly make a home.

i should keep moving.

magick, threadbone reading & 'godhood' is to be taken purely with a grain of salt and are written to be creations of ingram's imagination and religious faith.
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#24
"Silent treatment, huh?" Dwin drawled and rolled her eyes. "So like gods, don't you think?" a half-serious half-joking statement. From what Dwin had learned about gods of various backgrounds, they had some characteristics in common. Over-inflated idea of self-worth and childish wish to control everything. All or nothing. And if nothing - screw you, my loyal follower! I will either make your life miserable or will get rid of you completely. 

"Of course,"
Dwin nodded in agreement. "You have your princess to save. Good luck with that! See you," never again. She watched him leave. Despite her not liking him very much, she had had an entertaining half an hour or so. Had he appeared any less possessed, she might even have invited him to stop by at Brecheliant.