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 Pride Days (IC)

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sun Nov 09, 2014 4:29 pm

Layla nodded, feeling the same way. In truth she tried to be forgiving, but after seeing Kavis' carnage, there was little space in her heart for such things. "I already gave them strict orders to stay far away from him. We should keep a very close eye on them," she said, checking over her shoulder where they were sitting by the path. "There are so many things that can destroy one's mind, and that being said, loneliness is one of the strongest. But right now I don't think he can cause any large problems, he's as thin and frail as a Gazelle. But still, even with the weakest individuals, great problems can be caused." Layla was quiet for many long and lingering moments. "I wonder how Cyla is taking to this...."

___________________________________________________________________________________________________

Kavis looked at the kill pile. His ears drooping. "It's my first day... I'll wait a bit before I start making myself comfortable. Once I do build my strength up, I may leave anyways. It's a long story..." he said looking at his paws. He licked his lips and wiped his face with his paw, though there was no blood or dirt on his fur. He was paranoid about looking messy. He hesitated to talk again, but pulled through in the end. He wasn't sure what to say next, but awkwardly tried to change the topic. "You said you're nomadic. Didn't you ever have a Pride before that?"

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sun Nov 09, 2014 6:33 pm

Gamba's ear flicked, "Well, in regards to Cyla, Coglon has been carefully looking after her, and so far, she hasn't committed any sort of crime to speak of. I actually think they might have been a positive influence on one another. Coglon is more expressive than he used to be, and though it is not by much, I think he may have grown more empathetic than he was when I first met him. It could have something to deal with whatever happened to him, though, wherever he and Shadow crept off to. Cyla apparently followed them, but she never left the group, and in all the chaos, even something like defying the orders to stay in her prison den would have been forgivable, considering she had quite negative circumstances. The crimes she committed to land her in her current position are quite heinous, but at the same time, it seems that anyone who was involved with Snake's family was inevitably forced to do terrible things."

Gamba's tail flicked, "Cyla defied Dalmaa even when he was still a threat, so somehow I am able to bring myself to trust her more. I strongly believe she followed orders out of fear, rather than out of malicious intent. I believe that the whispers around the pride that are spread regarding her may hurt, but she is not without friends here. Coglon treats her kindly, and so does Shadow, though I have never seen the Healer behave with hostility towards anyone."

Gamba tilted his head at Layla, "We could likely see this current era after recent events as a period of healing. Many things are broken, and they have to be fixed." He shook his head, "Unfortunately, my own thoughts turn towards a certain someone who hasn't come back yet, even though it would be safe, now. Where do you think Ammon has gone, Layla? Why hasn't he come back, even though all over the world, we felt when the battle ended? I know he is alive, but why did he not return, when there are those here who think of him every day?"

______________________________________________________________________


Masika's ear flicked, "Well, I actually can't ever say I belonged to a pride. My parents were nomads, and so were myself and my brother. How things happen, though, was that we eventually got old enough where we left. I heard through the loose network that my brother has a mate, but that's not really enormous news. A bigger splash happens when we find out there's another new nomad that someone is running into that we've never heard of before. Nomads sometimes get news long before any sort of stationary pride, but that's because we pass close by where all of the trouble is occurring. Part of the reason I'm further south right now, isn't actually because of prey, but because there's been a bit of unrest further up north. Tiny rumors of war between some prides over the mountain range. There's been weird, bizarre things, too, that nobody seems to know the cause."

She took another bite of the gazelle, and, with a somewhat lacking aspect to her manners, spoke with food in her mouth, "I haven't heard much, recently, but when the storyteller gets here, he will have that news. Storytellers don't just tell you things like stories, they also generally spread around any news. I would just warn you, Kavis...if you decide to become a nomad and leave this pride, stay away from the northern lands."

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sun Nov 09, 2014 7:19 pm

Kavis nodded, taking another bite from the Gazelle as well. Though he tried not to take large bites so that Masika may have plenty. He swallowed and wiped his face once more. "I haven't heard anything about the north, only the east. I came from there, and I know that there are a lot of bad things out there. If I go anywhere, I'd likely go west. South is out of the question what with all the crocodiles and floods in Kenya." He scratched his mane. "Have you ever met this storyteller before?"

___________________________________________________________________________________________________

Layla shrugged. "It's hard to say, with that one." She recalled Ammon's sudden departure and Shebla's growing loneliness afterwards. "I begin to wonder if he'll ever return. It crushed Shebla. Kamuzu is gone and I'm sure Shebla and Mabel don't exactly connect well, with Mabel being so much older and all. It's a sad thing, but I'm sure that if he does return, there will be some hints of spite." Layla sighed and looked down at the grass. "And who knows how Shebla will react." Layla glanced at the cubs again, seeing that they were alright. She let out a thoughtful hum and shook her head. "I'm glad our family is so stable and situated, and with so few problems. I couldn't imagine what it would be like to be separated from you for so many moons."

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Mon Nov 10, 2014 12:28 am

Masika nodded, "His name is Fusan, and he's really a bit of a Fennec; he's whimsical and playful, so most of the time he's great with cubs, and it's hard not to like him. He is what you would call a 'Teller of True Tales', which means he's a story-teller who comes from a bloodline that passes down legends from one generation to the next. Because storytelling has become something of a dying art, a lot of important historical events have been forgotten, when lions like Fusan are generally meant to convey and re-tell the history through legends. The reason storytelling has declined is mostly because a few imaginative lions decided that they would make up stories more fantastic than the legends, and they wound up giving anyone who identified themselves as a storyteller a bad name. Everyone thought that they spouted lies, even if they were telling an absolutely true story. Most of the time, strangers are doubtful as to whether or not the legends storytellers provide are true or not, in these times, if they are aware that storytellers even still exist."

She tilted her head, and took another bite, not caring about her manners, "I have met Fusan before, but only briefly, during a social gathering that some other nomads had arranged, having gotten permission from a pride to use their camp. In that time period, he had arrived, and told us a story about how in ancient times, there were magnificent creatures that roamed the world; there were creatures like lizards that were larger than elephants, and ones that could fly, even though their size alone was incomprehensible." She swallowed her food, and continued, "At first, we all laughed, and said that we didn't believe him, but then he showed us something as proof that he was a genuine Teller of True Tales, verifying that he really did come from a bloodline that practiced the art. He had tied a lock of his mane in a knot around something so that he wouldn't lose it. That 'something' was a single claw made of stone, something called a fossil, that had been handed down in his family from parent to cub."

Masika continued, "This claw was enormous for what it was, sharp-edged, pointed, and hooked. It didn't belong to anything I had ever seen before. He told us that it had belonged to one of the smaller creatures that had hunted in ancient times, that it was supposedly like a lizard that walked on two legs, and yet, it had feathers, like a bird. The claw had come from its foot." Her bright yellow eyes grew wide at the memory, "After that, we had to believe him, he had shown us the ultimate proof, because he had one of those creature's claws with him, right there for us to see. A lot of the nomads and pride lions wanted to hear more, but then the king of the pride who had allowed us to gather in their camp told us it was time to leave, as it had gotten late and there were cubs that needed to sleep, so we went our separate ways."

She took another bite, this time, noting her manners, and chewing and swallowing before speaking again, "I saw that he was heading this way because I found markings written in the mud by the river, and I remembered his scent, as many moons ago as the whole incident was. He should show up in this pride later today, although it will probably be around dusk. I came here because I smelled the scent of a pride's border, and I knew he would probably ask the king if he could stay for a night, and share his stories with everyone."

She looked at Kavis intensely, "When he tells a story, you become pulled into it. It is as though the whole world around you transforms, or as though he were casting a spell. In the end, you always want to hear more of the story."

_____________________________________________________________________________


Gamba licked the side of Layla's snout affectionately, "I am happy that I have you and our cubs. Even though I had been accepted by the Sunset Pride that day, I had still thought I would never have a mate, or be a father. Now my mate is the most beautiful lioness in the Pride, and I have two sons and a daughter." He looked her in the eyes, "Even if you said those things were small, you are the most beautiful creature, in my eyes, and our cubs are more precious than anything that I could name. You all mean so much to me, and if I lost any of you, then the sun may as well have set forever." He stressed the last detail, "You are like the light in my world, and there isn't a day I don't think about you, and about our cubs."

He looked over at where Kakra and Atsu had started bickering again, and Omari was looking at the visiting cubs, tilting his head with an amused look, and shaking it slightly, as though non-verbally saying that he could never control his siblings, no matter how hard he tried to keep the brother-sister arguments from happening. "They all seem to be growing so fast. Omari and Atsu will be strong boys when they're older, but I always find myself fretting over Kakra. Why is it that I can't wait to see my sons as adults, and yet I can't stand the thought of letting my daughter go? I see Thelma talking with Osiris, and then I think about Kakra, and worry about the day when she meets some male, and falls in love with him. I always worry that someone will break her heart, and then I feel like if she ever brought some stranger home with her, even if he was one of the other lions in this pride her age, I wouldn't know whether I should greet him with joy, or rip him apart with my claws. No matter how nice he would be, I just feel like nobody would ever be good enough for my daughter." His eyes filled with a bit of anxiety, "Do you think every father feels this way, or worries so much when his cubs are still so young?"

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Mon Nov 10, 2014 8:22 am

"Every father has to," Layla replied. "Fathers fear their daughters growing older because they're so precious and so easy to lose. Sons are different. You look at them and become proud of their achievements as they grow, you want them to make more. Daughters make achievements too, and they're no different then males in being independent. But they have something about them that every parent fears of losing. It's something that no son has, something only a daughter can possess." Layla smiled, brushing Gamba with her tail. "I know how you feel. I feel the same way. It's important we watch her and be a good influence. One day she'll take a mate for herself and we can't stop that. But we can influence her enough to make the right choice; we can teach her who is right and who is wrong." She watched, smiling as Kakra and Atsu began bickering again. Thema and Ramses began trying to break it up. It was somewhat comical. Osiris simply stood with a somewhat amused face. But he looked as though he were suppressing laughter, trying to look 'cool' to the others. Layla snickered. "We can just enjoy their childhood while it lasts, and cherish it until the end."

____________________________________________________________________________________________

Kavis tilted his head at Masika. "That sounds... fascinating," he remarked. The winds caught up a bit and his fur blew up. The skies turned and darkened with every hour that day. As evening approached, Kavis walked back out to the lake and sat at the shore. The sun was in its early set and was a fiery vortex in the sky. The lake was lit up like blood with red light and the clouds were dark purples and bright scarlets. All day he had walked about the Pride with Masika, exploring it and learning new things about it. Now the storyteller would be here soon.

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Mon Nov 10, 2014 9:27 pm

Just as the final traces of the sun began to disappear beneath the horizon, a commotion was heard on the opposing side of camp from the south, where a patrol of guard lionesses were escorting someone into the pride. The lion who walked in their midst was a youthful adult who boasted a brilliant bay-colored mane, and his eyes were a pale ice blue, forming a striking contrast. Over his heart, there seemed to be something tucked into his mane, held there by a knot, but it was mostly obscured, because of the fur covering it. Masika and Kavis were already aware that it was likely the family relic that had been mentioned earlier, the ancient creature's claw. What nobody had expected, though, was that instead of making a dignified-looking entrance into the camp, tiny white flowers had been tucked into his mane all over, giving him a somewhat comical look. Most of those present to witness the storyteller's grand appearance laughed when they saw him; it was a very silly thing to do.

Even the guard lionesses, who were supposed to be serious, had to viciously fight in order to keep straight faces, and for the most part, it seemed to be a losing battle. The truth was that the storyteller had not spoken much as the lionesses had escorted him; he was not a flirt, and he did not want anyone to think that about him, either. What was comical was that somehow, the lion kept a straight face, even when he knew he looked completely ridiculous. It was clear, though, in the end, that to amuse and delight those around him was the sole reason for why he had filled his mane with posies, in the first place. What was more comical was that King Jali was sent for, and it looked as though the nomad was completely intent on having a serious conversation, despite how unbecoming he looked, thanks to the flowers.

Standing by Kavis' side, Masika had an amused look on her face, and shook her head slowly, "How he can look so ridiculous and keep a straight face is beyond me." She said.

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Wed Nov 12, 2014 9:23 pm

Kavis himself was given light at heart upon the storyteller's arrival and seemed amused. He didn't laugh, but he did slightly chuckle. He watched as he entered the camp and he looked to Masika. "Well, I suppose he's going to begin soon. Let's go," he said. He began moving towards the storyteller and waited for his beginning to start. Kavis' shyness was dimmed now, but what remained as stone behind it all was a harsh feeling as though everyone hated him. In actuality, there were few people in the Pride that didn't, and his heart began to grow more determined to prove himself. But that would come later. Now it was time to stop and listen and have an enjoyable time.


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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Fri Nov 14, 2014 9:44 pm

As the sun set, Fusan took his place in the center of the lunar calendar that Coglon had built, as it formed a perfect circle that the lions could gather around, without permitting them to get so close that it was difficult to move. When everyone had settled down, somewhat, the storyteller began with his introduction, “Lions and Lionesses of Sunset Pride, I thank all of you for gathering here tonight. Please permit me to introduce myself. I am Fusan, a Teller of True Tales, and a storyteller who knows many legends, which were passed down for generations in my family, from parent to cub.” His words projected well, but were calm and soothing. They were also very humble, despite several misconceptions that the flowers in his mane may have given him.

He then proceeded to shake the flowers out of his mane in a deliberate movement, that sent them all sailing out of his fur, above his head, and then slowly drifting on the air to land around his feet within the circle, almost resembling feathers, as the petals were very light, for some reason. It was something designated for showmanship, so it looked quite impressive, drawing sounds of fascination from the cubs that were permitted to watch, most of all. “Tonight, I shall tell you a story from countless moons ago, from a time before many of the creatures and things we know of walked the earth. It was a time when gigantic beasts and creatures that have long since vanished into the mists of time ruled over the world, and when frozen glaciers encased the land in ice and snow, more frigid than the coldest of rains.” It seemed that he was giving a sort of prologue to the specific story, and one realized that the flowers perhaps were meant to represent something, as they caught the moonlight and seemed to glow where they rested on the ground.

“In the time of the era of cold, lions first appeared in the world, along with many cats, whose faces and appearances are alien to us. The first lions did not roam on open plains, or through forests, but on the frigid fields of ice to take their kills. Their prides dwelled within the mountains, and though their fur was thick on the upper body, to protect from the cold, they possessed no true mane. These first cave lions were our ancestors, and their blood flows through our veins, still. We must remember these great warriors, for in their world, one could not conceal their form in the tall, wavering grasses, or behind the tall trees, for the plains of pure white ice were endless, and only the swiftest or strongest would survive. There were no snares to catch their prey, and indeed, they sometimes tackled things far greater in size, larger than elephants, even.”

Fusan continued, “In these times, when food was scarce, neighboring prides were not strangers to violence or tensions among their own kind, but rarely did they truly begrudge one another for it. Sometimes they would share larger kills, or perhaps they scuffled on the edges of territory, but all crimes were generally forgiven. The snow, as water in solid form that would pack down over time into ice, did not so readily hold markers, and a large kill, shared among prides, often eased their rancor. It began as a harsh existence, but regardless, among all lions, save for the weight of sins levied against mortal creatures, it was still peaceful among their kind.”

Fusan scanned the faces around him, “All was well, until one fateful day, an alliance was forged, and the ultimate crimes committed. The world was plunged into a terrible state of never-ending war, until the plains of brilliant snow were stained red with the blood of a myriad of creatures. It was not merely lions, but everything that could walk and speak with them, and sometimes, the innocent prey, as well. Fear made the violence grow, and it fed on itself until even the most peaceful of creatures were driven to kill. The select few who were left untouched hid in terror, and the spirits who watched over them in the heavens were stunned to silence by the terrible deeds that they witnessed.”

Fusan’s voice and gaze took on an intensity, and once more, he looked at the faces of the crowd, “An era of cold became an era of killing and of madness, and so, in this dark time, a few mortals rose against the shadows. It is with the first of these heroes to face the cruel, atrocious world that the story truly begins…”

Fusan took a slow breath, “In a small den, somewhere, far away from the pride, hidden in the tiniest crevice in a small rock cliff, a young lion cub opened his eyes, seeing the world for the first time. He saw the walls, the ceiling, and the floor of this cave, but what he saw the most was his mother, whose voice and breath he knew, though he did not know what her face had been until then. As her son looked at her, the lioness looked at him, proud that the cub was hers. He was a beautiful cub, his fur a pale creamy grey, almost white. His eyes were an equally pale yellow, an unusual color. His paws were so large, it was clear he would be of great size, when he was older. The lioness, upon seeing her cub’s eyes, said his name, so he knew the face that belonged to the voice he had heard.

The cub’s name was Relic…


If Shebla was in the audience, she would find the description eerily familiar, but in the end, it was the name that would make her realize what this story was about. The cub in the story was the same Ancient Spirit who had touched Ammon.

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sat Nov 15, 2014 1:09 am

Shebla had been listening in the dense crowd, interested in what Fusan had to say. She couldn't see him past the ears of several others though, and after fighting the want to get closer and failing, simply sat with her gaze on the ground. But then she heard that name. That one familiar name, the name that made her ears prick straight up and her eyes lift with suddenness. That name.

Relic.

She pushed through the lionesses in front of her with force, making her way to the very front and refusing anything short of that. She looked at Fusan, eyes wide. She hoped deep in her heart this meant something. Ammon was destined to return, but Shebla didn't want to be old and gray before that day came. And though Egret had told her that day would be soon, Shebla could only imagine what 'soon' meant to a Spirit, as opposed to what a mortal knew it to be. She stared with an expression that begged hope.

Hope for return.

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sat Nov 15, 2014 9:14 am

Fusan continued with the story, unaware of any special symbolic meaning behind it, “After the many happy acknowledgments between mother and cub that could occur, Rune eventually attained an age where he was able to walk about on his own, though, dangerous as this world was, he was forbidden from leaving the den. Because his birthplace was kept secret for safety reasons, his mother would go and gather food alone, so that Relic was left by himself. It was an alarming thing, even in the past, but Relic was a good cub, and did not disobey the words of his mother. He would go out to the very mouth of the tiny cave, and look out from the high place in the rocky crags, searching for her. A vast plain of ice, just a flat expanse of white, greeted him each time he did this, and sometimes, snowfall in the distance. In the beginning of his life, his mother, the den, the rocky crag, and the frozen plains were all that he knew.”

Fusan took a small pause, “Innocent, Relic did not yet see what a brutal world he had been born into, or that the troubles that ruined the peace were already beginning to slowly grow. The cub, though he knew little, only knew that the plains of ice were beautiful, and the rising rocks of the crag majestic. One rose tall, and the other was so vast and spotless, it was impossible not to see the skies, unobstructed by trees or mountains that would have hidden the stars and the moon from his sight. He would stare out of the cave, and marvel at all the wonderful things that he saw; for that was just about all a solitary cub could do, in his situation. Eventually, his mother would come back to tend to him, and later, carrying meat that had been frozen hard as rock by the weather, because he eventually grew his teeth and could eat solid things. Relic then marveled at how his tongue would stick to bones, and the fact that for a time, the kill was impossible to chew.” There was a small laugh, as he reflected upon the childish-sounding behaviors of the cub in the story.

“For this time, Relic lived a life untainted, but this peace could never last. One day, as he waited for his mother, he found that she did not come back. There was a bit of frozen meat in the cave, in case this occurred, but Relic held out, wanting to eat alongside her. He waited, and waited, until finally, he had no choice, and still, she did not come back. The sun set, and then it rose again, but Relic’s mother was nowhere to be found. Two suns passed, and Relic was still alone, shivering by the mouth of the cave, waiting.”

“On the third sun, where his mother had still not yet appeared, an enormous array of shapes appeared on the plains of ice, and Relic watched, wondering what it was. He did not know that these shapes were that of his pride, and another, gathering on opposing sides of the field. War had finally broken, and it was on this day, that Relic first bore witness to violence, as the shapes charged for one another, and began killing, with a cruel indifference for all but their allies. The cub did not know what ‘murder’ or ‘war’ was, but he was horrified, by what he saw.”

Fusan tilted his head and shook it a little, “It is unknown, during this time, what exactly happened, but at some point, Relic realized that a few strange lions were approaching the crag, tracking the same trail that his mother would have left, where it was not covered by fresh snow. Seeing as their paws had been stained with blood, and all of them appeared to be fierce warriors, Relic made the wise decision to flee, before he was found. He fell from a cliff that he hadn’t noticed, and landed in a snowbank, which cushioned his fall. He then trudged out of it, and picked a direction, before moving as quickly as he could, away from the chaos, as the battle had lasted, yet never ceased. Suddenly, the white plains were ominous, as red stains made them reek of death.”

“It is unknown how long Relic journeyed, or how far he went, but it was perhaps many suns, and far further than any cub should have to walk alone. He was forced to jump, much of the time, because in some places, the snow was so high and thick that it came up to his chest, completely burying his legs. It tired his body, and he did not sleep, though everything screamed for rest, and though his muscles ached. He continued to flee to the south, facing exhaustion great enough that some lives that would have belonged to adults, even, would have given out. He continued to walk, miserable, cold, and hungry and so weak from the combination of conditions that it is still today considered a miracle that he survived.”

“Eventually, though, he came to a place where the snow melted, and where for the first time, Relic saw a forest. These were not the few sparse trees encased in ice that he had seen before, but they were brilliant, green-leaved plants with flowers of every color, and strange foliage and undergrowth as well. Here, the weather was warm, and though it took time, the numbness left Relic’s limbs, leaving the cub with a weariness that was immeasurable. He still continued on, though, as he could find a place to rest, here. Eventually, he found a tiny bush that hung low to the ground, and it was here that he finally collapsed. The cub fell fast asleep, and it is said that he did not wake from this rest, until three suns had passed.”

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sat Nov 15, 2014 9:17 pm

Kavis sat listening to the story. Several words that came from Fusan's mouth pinned his head in the runway of bad memories. Odd, how the story made him think about his own past. But he sat calmly, trying to suppress the huge urge to sink his claws and fangs into the physical embodiments of his hate. It was hard to keep the tears in, but he somehow managed to do only as much as tense up. He looked at Masika. How lucky for you... to have been born normal, he thought. He looked back at Fusan and waited for his story to continue.

Shebla meanwhile sat soaking in every bit of the story. She absorbed as much she could, stuffing everything in her memory. She knew she would need it. She knew this mean something. Were the Spirits trying to tell her something? No, they've stopped interfering... I think... she thought. Ammon, please come home.... She felt sorry for Relic, after her own thoughts of Ammon had passed. She wondered what happened next and eagerly awaited the next part of the story.

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Wed Nov 19, 2014 7:30 pm

“Relic woke up to find that he was no longer under the shrubbery where he had fallen asleep. He had been found, and then picked up and carried off deeper into the jungle. He found himself inside a small, shallow pit, and under normal circumstances, any cub could have crawled with ease out of it. Because of the intense physical strain he had been under, however, Relic could hardly move, and his body was so sore and tense that he was forced to bite back cries of agony whenever he budged. He was also in desperate need of both food and water, having gone far too long without either one. He may have been on the brink of death, but in a most miraculous way, he was saved.”

“When he awoke, a shape rose and moved to loom over, looking at him, and he fell silent with fear, not familiar with what he saw. It was an enormous male creature, like a monkey, but it possessed no tail. In this time period, it would have stood twice as tall as a male human, or as tall as seven lions standing on each other’s shoulders. Its legs were shorter, but its arms were very long. It had pale, greyish skin that was tinged pink in a few places on its face and paws, and long, bright orange fur elsewhere. It was called a Giant Orangutan, and this strange male was the one who had placed Relic in the pit.”

“Relic cowered as the strange creature’s dark brown eyes looked at him, but then another, a female, approached, clutching a male cub of their kind to her heart, as these tailless monkeys, called apes, often did. It appeared these two were mates, and the female carried their only son. This was strange, as most creatures would kill the young of something they saw that possessed sharp teeth and claws, for fear of it growing and killing them as prey when it was an adult. In this case, perhaps their immense size and power was enough to convince them that they need not fear a lion cub. It may have been this, or perhaps the simple fact that lions like Relic did not live in the jungle, and he had not woken up for such an incredible amount of time, there was a certain fascination about him.”


“Relic continued to cower as they looked at him, before the male took something white, and cracked it on a rock, revealing it to be the egg of some bird, although Relic saw no birds in his native home, and therefore did not know. The male creature then took a small bit of whatever was inside of it, as though to show it was not dangerous, and offered it to the cub, placing it within easy reach. Relic was leery about touching it, but seeing as he had been offered food that was safe, and he would not be capable of getting anything himself, he took it. His stomach twisted with the first food he had eaten in what seemed to be ages, but when it settled, he was aware that the egg was some source it of nourishment, as well as water. He was able to choke a small ‘thank you’ after eating it, as his throat was no longer so painfully dry, but it was still very faint.”

“When he spoke, they tilted their heads, before the male lifted him up, and carefully cradled him with his front limbs, just as the mother was doing with her own son. They looked at each other, and leaned over, and quietly conversed, though Relic did not understand, for it was too muted to hear. The pair eventually made an agreement, before the male spoke for the first time, stroking the cub’s head with his paw, ‘Little cat, where do you come from, that we found you cold, and asleep for three suns as though dead? We feared you would not take the egg, and would starve. You are so thin! Where is your mother?’”

“Relic, upon remembering his mother, began to cry hysterically, for he did not know how to answer their question. Upon seeing him cry, the female handed her own cub to the male, and took Rune relic him, while saying, “You have made him upset! Hold Ayo…Goodness, his limbs are so stiff! What was this little one doing, walking so much as to make himself this sore and exhausted?!” She exclaimed, rubbing his legs with her flexible elongated front toes, trying to work out the stiffness that was making it so difficult for him to walk. Relic just continued to cry, as he was under so much stress. It was just a pitiful sight, the enormous ape mother holding him, trying to bring some flexibility back into Relic’s limbs, and the cub just crying on and on, looking so forlorn that even the stoniest of hearts would have felt their heart break.”

“The female looked at the male, ‘He does not seem to have a mother or perhaps something terrible has happened to separate them, but he does not resemble any cat I have seen before. He is very weak, if we leave him here, he will be picked off by something. I know that another eater of meat like him would not care for him in place of her own babies, but it is no trouble to us in obtaining meat, when we can also eat fruits in this jungle, which grow in so much abundance.’ She said, speaking to her mate.”

“He looked warily at the cub, ‘I would not argue with you, dearest, but what if he hurts Ayo? Can we trust the two together?’ He asked, carefully holding his son, who stared at Relic with wide brown eyes.

Ayo simply looked at Relic, one of his front limbs draped over his father’s, “Hi,” He whispered, unheard over the cautious debate of the parents, who were once again discussing something quite serious. Relic, of course, was too upset to notice, until Ayo strained to reach over and tap Relic on the head with his paw, getting his attention, ‘Hi, I’m Ayo.’ He said, ‘Why are you crying?’

“Relic, of course, stifled his cries, but was still very upset, ‘My mother…my mother…she never came back…then the strangers came and I had to run. I think they wanted to do something bad to me. I saw lots of strangers in the field, they were hurting each other. I don’t know where I am, where are we? I want to go home…’ He then fell silent as he simply began to whimper.

“’I think my mom and dad like you. Maybe you could stay with us? You’re a cat, and I know you don’t eat fruit, but you can eat eggs. They’re tasty, aren’t they?’ The little orangutan cub said, tilting his head.

“’It was, but I ran out of food a lot of suns ago. I don’t remember…’”

“’Then it must have been good. It always tastes better when you’re really hungry. You’re okay, though, and I’m okay, too. Mom and dad are nice, so they wouldn’t hurt you.’ Ayo said, trying to calm him down. ‘What’s your name?’ the young one asked, inquisitive.”

“Relic sniffled, ‘Relic…’ He replied, starting to calm down, somewhat.”

“At this point, Ayo’s parents made a conclusion, upon seeing the interaction between the two, and the mother held the cub so that he was made to look at her face, ‘You seem to be a good child, little cat. Would you like to stay with us? We are no replacement for your mother, but you and Ayo seem to get along well enough.’ She said. When Relic did not immediately respond, she made the decision for him, ‘We can’t leave you alone, little one. We will look after you, and you can be Ayo’s playmate. I know it is scary, but you can trust us. We’ll take good care of you.’” She said.

“Just that quickly, Relic had become an official member of the most unlikely of families.”


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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sat Nov 22, 2014 2:10 am

Kavis watched his paws as Fusan continued, shuffling his weight awkwardly from one paw to another. This childhood story was very different than his own. It already began to seem happier, simply by the fact that Relic was cared for by this point in the story. He felt happier at that, and less saddened by the story. Surely everything wasn't doom and gloom. But he shook the bad thought out of his head and continued to listen. Shebla, not far ahead, stood, still soaking everything in. Jali stood along the edge, overlooking the crowd from a low-hanging tree limb, spread across it relaxingly. Sira stood just underneath it, his tail swooping by a brushing her affectionately with every pass. Their cubs squirmed around Sira's paws, but they were still thoroughly soaked into the story, and would comment on the events every now and then. "Mom, that's sad!" Ramses would say. Sira would nod and give him a lick about the forehead, trying to keep the two of them quiet so the rest of the Pride could enjoy the story.

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sat Nov 22, 2014 11:14 am

"After this first encounter with the orangutan family, Relic spent his first few days trying to adapt to his new life in the jungle, which was radically different from the world he knew previously. There were new creatures he had never seen before, and trees, flowers, and any sort of green growth were an alien concept. He also had to adapt to being a member of a family of apes, which was no small task, as there was a radical difference between the two. If you wanted to describe it, a cave lion made as much sense in the jungle among a family of giant orangutans as a mole would if it were to suddenly sprout wings and fly alongside soaring falcons. Not only were their bodies different in appearance, but their abilities also differed. The orangutans could eat both plants and meat, but rarely hunted for meat itself; while Relic as a lion had to have it. The new parents had to learn to go and hunt small prey animals to feed their new son, and Relic, in the meantime, had to learn how to forage and eat eggs in place of meat, when he could not have it. Foraging for eggs not only entailed the risk of being attacked by angry bird parents, but it also entailed learning how to expertly climb trees."

"Relic's chances of survival, overall, had been very low, and still were, because of the nature of the differences that divided lions and apes, but in the end, he survived, and no one is credited with Relic's survival more than Ayo. Ayo, who had accepted Relic as a friend and a brother without question, helped adapt the skills that the orangutans learned into something that a cat could use. Without Ayo, Relic would not have ever learned how to climb trees, or how to steal eggs from nests. Even carrying and eating an egg were skills that Ayo helped Relic to adapt, for there was a way you had to crack the egg to get at the food inside without ruining it, and there was also the matter of carrying the egg in your mouth without crushing it, or dropping it."

“Relic and Ayo grew very close, and they did everything together. Their sibling bond, though forged in the most unusual way, was very strong, and it endured every test without failing once. Even when they began to grow older, and Relic began hunting and killing small animals for food himself, Ayo never once feared that his brother might turn his teeth and claws towards him. Their parents feared it, but they could not persuade Ayo to keep his distance from Relic, and, in the end, Relic never even considered the idea that Ayo could be prey.”

“One day, Relic’s parents were whispering to Ayo about the possibility of his adoptive brother turning on him and killing him as prey, but Relic overheard the conversation, down on the ground a short distance from where they sat in a tree. Relic suddenly shouted with the most ferocious sound he had ever produced, before angrily stating, ‘Ayo is not food!’ Before suddenly seeming shocked, for it was the first true roar he had ever produced. He then turned to glare at the parents on the branch, ‘I would never do that!’ he asserted, this time his voice much deeper-sounding, while looking enraged. The ape parents panicked, because one could not overlook that a roar was a great sign of a lion close to becoming an adult.”

“One of the greatest differences between lions and apes is that their maturation alone is very different. I should say that Ayo was actually much older than Relic, although looking at them; they appeared to be the same age. One ape does not become a true adult, until nearly two generations among lions pass. Relic’s adoptive parents did not know that a lion cub would rapidly mature compared to their own blood-born son, and they were overall shocked at how rapidly Relic had grown from a small cub into something so large and threatening in appearance. It was perhaps this shock that made them worry about their son, although in the end, Ayo was old enough where he and Relic could transition into adults without any sort of dramatic gap between them forming.”

“While their parents cowered in the tree with shock, despite the fact that they were far larger and perhaps much stronger than an adolescent cave lion, Ayo hopped down from the branches, walking up to his brother. He then put his paw on top of his brother’s head, ‘Twig-brain; you scared mom and dad.’ He said, ‘That was a pretty cool thing you did though, with your voice. I wish I could do that.’ He said, completely taking away any rage that Relic had been feeling at the moment.”

“Relic, not sure what to do as a response, chose to go with the simplest route, ‘Uh, thank you…’ he then drifted off, because his voice now sounded very deep and alien. Nobody was used to Relic sounding like an adult yet, and that included Relic himself.”

“Ayo just looked at his brother, before laughing, ‘Your voice broke! What a way to make that statement…’ It was then that Ayo paused, because on the last word, his own voice had suddenly gotten deeper. The two just stared at each other with weird looks on their faces, before bursting into laughter, while their parents, no longer cowering, stared at them with dumbfounded amazement.”

“And so it was that their voices broke at the same time, and they managed to convince their parents that Relic wasn’t a threat. This is also the last part of the story I will tell you about their childhood. The real story happens when they’re older.”

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Fri Dec 05, 2014 8:20 am

Shebla's ears pricked up with interest as Fusan continued with the story. Her level of fascination grew ever higher with every passing moment. She felt like it might be a sign of some sort. Or at least she hoped as much. Kavis, on the other hand, still stood quietly. His tail neatly curled around his paws and his mane falling down with his slightly drooping head. He watched all of the passing cubs give him eyefuls and their mothers divert them from his presence, taking them back to the front of the crowd to listen to the story. He tried to distract himself, he tuned back in and began listening to the next part.

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sun Dec 07, 2014 6:09 pm

Fusan continued with the skip into the story where Relic and Ayo were adults, “Now, when they were grown, they were forced to make several tough decisions, as many young creatures must, when they are older. When you are an adult, you must learn to define yourself as an individual, and stand on your own without your parents to guide you in every decision that you make.” He scanned the cubs, specifically, that were listening, “Most young cubs think that it will be fun to be an adult, and cannot wait to grow up, but the truth is, when you grow older, it is one of the greatest trials in life. Cubs may ask their parents to grab them by the scruff and pull them out of a mess, but things change when you are older. Out of love and a desire to see you succeed in life, your parents will begin to push you to make certain choices, and because you have never made them before, you will struggle with it. A part of growing up is learning to be independent, and so it was that when Relic and Ayo grew up, they went through a similar process."

The storyteller then went into the story, "As Relic grew up, it is without question that his maturation was still greatly affected by the absence of other lions in his life. He was forced to become independent much earlier than most lions normally did, out of an obligation, primarily to himself, but also to his adoptive family. Orangutans were not the best-suited hunters, and so it was that Relic became a proficient hunter when he was very young, outmatching most other cubs his age, although he did not know it. Where one cub may kill a single small creature in a period of time, Relic would kill two, and have plenty of time to spare. He also did this in a jungle, where his striking near-white coat would make him quite visible against green foliage; it is said that he would hold a branch in front of him to hide his appearance, before lunging at the prey, dropping the branch and killing it with a bite to the neck” Fusan scanned the faces around him, "Because he had to learn techniques that concealed him from view, he became very skilled in stealth overall, and eventually, gained the reputation of being a Phantom or Spirit, for a creature of such incredible size to go unnoticed was so alien that it seemed supernatural."

At this point in the story, certain individuals in the pride, though not all, would begin to recognize eerie parallels between Relic and someone else they knew. There was one other lion currently alive somewhere who was, similar to Relic, described as a Phantom or Spirit, who could conceal himself, despite his extremely pale coat, and massive size. One other parallel was drawn, but this understanding was reserved to Shebla alone, who had learned through the visions given by a spirit, that the lion as a cub had successfully killed two prey creatures, outmatching other cubs, and had first-hand witnessed the same exact technique, described word-for-word.

Fusan continued, "When Relic was older, he had little trouble making up his mind, for he had a rather forthright manner in conducting business, and had been making decisions long before he was an adult. As an adult, he was a large, powerful, and was said to be quite handsome, as well, for he had a regal appearance, some say, that gave him an aura of undeniable authority. He walked with confidence that displayed his pride in his strength, but he did not brag or gloat, for those who boast of their strength are often cowards in secret. Relic was honest about what he said or did, and made no promises of what he could or could not do. He was vocal of his beliefs, when the need arose, but he seldom spoke, and so it was that one found themselves hanging on every word, and listening carefully. He was said to be calm in most situations, but angered quickly by what he perceived to be wrong. He was characterized first by his rare combination of strength, skill, intelligence, and wisdom, and secondly, by his powerful sense of justice."

"When Relic was older, he had resolved to return to the north, where he had come from, in order to determine what exactly had happened. As he had matured, he continued to ponder the mystery surrounding the battle on the snow-covered fields, until finally, he could stand it no longer. It was not because he did not understand the violence, but primarily, because the more he thought of such events, the more it disturbed him. He became aware of a strange sense of...wrongness...about the entire situation." Fusan paused, letting the audience take in the information, "When one senses something unnatural about a situation, it is natural that you either want to leave it, or fix the problem. Because Relic was far away, the former option was no longer viable. He had to find out what the issue was, and do what he could to fix it."

"Ayo, who had been pressured repeatedly by his parents to go and find an independent community of orangutans to live with, refused to do what they asked, and instead, determined that he would follow his brother. Ayo behaved as an older sibling, and felt responsible for Relic's well being, so he wished to go and look after him. His parents argued, however, that because they had heard Relic mention many alien things when speaking about his home, that Ayo would be just as confused there, as Relic had been in the jungle. Their son insisted, however, that if his brother could survive in the jungle, then Ayo could probably adapt to the plains. So it was that Ayo and Relic set out, heading north.

Fusan took a deep breath, and sighed, "They walked and walked, until the air grew cold, and snow began to appear on all the leaves, and the foliage began to disappear. During this time, Ayo, who had never felt anything colder than the jungle rain, constantly shivered, but was amazed at how his brother was not remotely disturbed by it. He did not freeze to death, but the cold chilled the bare parts of his body that had no fur, while Relic became increasingly accustomed to the elements, walking in the snowdrifts as though he had done it his entire life. Indeed, during this time, the two brothers seemed to switch places. Ayo, who had been a mentor to Relic in the jungle, would now learn alongside his brother, who, without any question, was far better suited to the frozen world around them. While Relic found the bleak, barren plains of ice welcoming, Ayo could only observe how there seemed to be such a vast nothingness, the likes of which he had never seen before."

"As they went along, Ayo was forced to change what he ate. He had eaten plants before, but now he was forced to do something similar to Relic's actions in the jungle. Relic's pale fur blended perfectly with the snow, but Ayo's was striking, for it was a bright orange. Ayo, in order to survive, had to eat meat exclusively, as there was no plant life he could find, save for very hard, brown plants that were splintery, and hard on his tongue, buried in the snow. Some creatures could eat them, but only those that were adapted to do so. As a result, it is said Ayo would bury himself in mounds of snow, and reach out and grab whatever came wandering by. In truth, the Orangutan became the best hunter of his kind, as little success as he had in the matter. He had to rely on Relic's assistance to perfectly conceal his fur, and even if he succeeded, some snow would melt when it touched his body, and because many apes lacked fur, he would be chilled by it. It is still considered a miracle that Ayo did not become ill from all of this, but his health is attributed to the fact that he continuously moved, rather than stopping to rest. Movement produced the heat needed to keep alive, and when the brothers rested, it was after they had reached crags that protected them from the elements."

Fusan paused, and then spoke again, "One day, however, they finally saw their first signs of life other than small prey creatures. In the distance, hairy behemoths loomed, thick locks of brown wool covering their bodies, and long, pale horns curving gracefully from their faces. These creatures, the wooly rhinoceroses, had stopped to graze on the tough plants buried under the snow. The two warily moved around them, for these creatures were enormous, and far stronger than either of them. Their horns could also spear through them, and so they feared, as they came near, that they would attack. It just so happened that a younger one, whom they had thought was an adult, though perhaps younger than they had first imagined. This young rhino was frolicking through the snow, for whatever reason. It just so happened he stopped right in their path, quite close to where they were. It did not take much time before he spotted them, and they were standing there, staring at each other."

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sat Dec 13, 2014 11:36 pm

Shebla's eyes were fully widened and she fought back tears of awe. It was when others began to stare at her, and when Mira asked her, "What's wrong?" that she relaxed her face and fell back to normal. She shook her head, dismissing it all.

"Nothing, it's nothing," she smiled. But her smile fell again as she watched Fusan while he talked. I need to speak with him privately before he leaves... she thought. There were so many things in the story that pointed in Ammon's direction. It was just too strange and there was no way it was a simple coincidence. This meant something. Shebla was going to find out what.

Kavis sat a distance away from Shebla, next to Masika. He felt the hairs of his mane tingle and those on his neck stand up. His ears both twitched. The Albino... That nickname suddenly rang in his head. He felt his claws slowly unsheathe and his lips draw back. He felt that Dark King creeping back in. The dark emotions slipped inside. The hatred. The loathing. The jealousy. But he became aware of his surrounding again. He slowly sheathed his claws again. He didn't think anyone noticed; it was slow and quiet enough. His face shrunk back to normal and his ears fell silent. He looked at Masika, wondering if she could sense it in him, or if she noticed his frail body tensing.

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Mon Dec 15, 2014 4:19 pm

Masika glanced at Kavis, somehow sensing an uneasy aura coming off of him, “If you’re that into the story, you should know that rhinos are usually really gentle by nature. Most creatures think they’re dangerous, and they’re right to believe that; they aren’t vicious and aggressive, though, unless someone gives them a reason to be. They’re more likely to be dangerous if they panic and trampled you while they were trying to run away.” She whispered. She mistook Kavis’ uneasiness for zeal for the story, as Fusan’s talent was extraordinary. She did not know that he was jealous, or that Relic was correlating strongly with an individual that certain members of the pride were familiar with.

Fusan continued to tell his story, unaware that there was anything that was wrong, “For a while, they remained at their standoff with the young rhino, who merely looked back at them, as though dumbfounded. Keep in mind, however, what this young male was looking at: there was a predatory creature, but what was this large, bright orange thing standing alongside it? He had certainly never seen it before, and he was unsure of what the proper reaction was. Was the creature friendly, and what was it doing next to a creature who was so dramatically different? It was an oddity, and because of this, the response the rhino actually made surprised Relic and Ayo both.”

“The Rhino opened his mouth, and spoke to them, ‘Uh, hello.’ He said, his voice identifying him as somewhere around the same age group as them. “What are you two….doing…here…?’ He asked, his voice drifting off, clearly indicating his confusion at the situation. ‘Ah, I guess I should introduce myself, I’m Jaz.’ He then proceeded to laugh uneasily, trying to pretend that this occasion was not the most awkward and strange event that had ever happened in his life. Relic and Ayo exchanged looks while Jaz continued to uneasily chuckle, deciding that it was unlikely that this strange leviathan was going to attack them.”

Relic tilted his head at the rhino, ‘We could ask you the same question. I am Relic, and this is my brother, Ayo.’ He said, returning the formality. ‘We were just passing through here. We have been traveling for several days from the south, trying to find a specific location.’ He explained. Despite his status as a hunter of prey, therefore making the conversation between a carnivore and a plant-eater, Relic was not aware that Jaz had displayed an unusual gift.”

Fusan scanned the faces of the audience, “It is commonly known that a predatory creature never understands the speech of something that exclusively eats plants alone. If you understand what another thing aside from a lion says, it is either because it is another meat-eater like us in some form or fashion. If we were to understand complete plant-eaters, then we would feel too much guilt from killing our prey, as it would have its own voice to plead for mercy. In this context, I have heard the rare, occasional story, of strange anomalies, in which creatures such as gazelles have mysteriously been able to hear and understand the speech of lions, as well as speak back to them. In Relic and Ayo’s case, Jaz was a wooly rhinoceros who possessed such a gift, though he did not know it. In truth, when Relic responded, Jaz was once more shocked, for he had not expected to hear anything other than a snarl or growl; he had expected sounds he could not understand from the lion.”

“Jaz paused, and stopped laughing, ‘You are a lion, and I have heard that there are many fights up north, some sort of war. Herds have been wiped out by the armies, and I’ve heard that they’ve started fighting the lions, too.’ He said, referring to his own kind engaging in the violence. He tilted his head, ‘How is it that I can understand what you are saying?’ He asked, ‘Nobody in my herd can understand what a predator says. They told me you were mindless killing machines that took down our calves. They said that lions and tigers couldn’t talk, so why can I understand you?’ He asked.”

“Relic tilted his head, ‘You understanding me is abnormal? I have never seen creatures like you before. I also don’t see how I’m mindless, either. Lions kill and eat prey because we are incapable of eating plants; we get sick if we try. The only exception is if we need medicine, and even then, it will generally make one nauseous.’ He explained, ‘I have also never spoken to anything seen as prey before, I could not understand it, if it ever spoke. Are you sure you are not the one speaking to me, who mysteriously understands what a lion is saying?’ He asked.”

“There was a commotion in the herd, as several calves began chasing each other, making enough noise to be heard at a great distance. Jaz turned to Relic, ‘Those calves, can you understand what they’re saying?’ he asked, deciding to test Relic to determine who possessed an unnatural understanding of other creatures. Relic, however, only shook his head, understanding none of the noises that the young rhinos produced. Jaz was the only one whose sounds reached his ears in the form of words. ‘I don’t know what they are saying.’ Relic told him. ‘It seems that the spirits have given you the power to understand all creatures, regardless of what we are.’ He said.

“Jaz seemed uneasy, ‘Well, I guess so, but that still doesn’t answer my last question. Whether I am dreaming or not, are you fighting in that war? You and your-‘he squinted his eyes at Ayo, ‘-Brother?’ he finished.’

“Relic shook his head slowly, ‘I am certain of it, that my birth mother was killed. When did this war occur? How many moons ago?’ He asked.”

“Jaz shook his head and stamped a foot, ‘It started about twenty-three moons ago, and it has not stopped since. My whole herd migrated south to avoid it.’ He said.”

“Relic then proceeded to sigh, shaking his head regretfully, ‘Then what I suspected is true. It began a moon after I was born, and must have been raging on while I was unaware. That could be the only reason for why my mother kept me in a den away from everyone else.’ He then looked at Ayo, ‘We will not ever find her, and she must have been caught by an enemy while hunting.’ He then turned to Jaz, ‘Are you aware of what caused the fight?’ He asked.”

“Jaz looked away into the wind, ‘I do not know, because I stayed far away. All I know is that after the battle started, the leader of one herd had his head suddenly filled with these wild, radical beliefs, saying he had heard them from a lone andrewsaurus. We all thought he was crazy, but he was extremely persuasive, and half his herd stayed to follow him. He said that the andrewsaurus could grant them the power to change the world, and I even heard that he was sighted walking alongside of one. All I know is, they think that they could play Protheus and Dalmaa, but they have to cause chaos as some sort of sacrifice.’ The rhino danced uneasily on his large feet, ‘It turned into some freakish cult, and it really creeps me out to talk about it.’ He said, seemingly forgetting his own strange ability.”

‘Relic puzzled over the statement, ‘I agree, that that is highly disturbing. Do you think perhaps that this andrewsaurus possesses a power similar to yours?’ he asked. He shook his head, not waiting for any answer, ‘If he can, then we need to stop this. If he incited a peaceful herd of your kind, who apparently shuns fighting, into entering into a war, then he could be the cause of all of this.’ He concluded.”

“Jaz laughed uneasily, as that was his way of dealing with the discomfort, ‘The battle grows day by day, and the area where it takes place keeps growing. It’s spreading all over the world.’ He said.”

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Tue Dec 16, 2014 12:11 am

Kavis shook his head at Masika. He thought his words over carefully for a moment, before speaking. This was a dangerous topic. He knew that. He did not come to look in her eyes. "No it's not that... It's a long story. I'm not sure you'd understand. You just got here anyway." He continued to listen to the rest of the story, the words 'Protheus' and 'Dalmaa' popping up and he felt his heart boil in his brains. The very mention of the word Dalmaa was enough to fire a million memories into his head. Most of the memories he had forgotten, but now they came back. In the end they faded and his mind detached from them, forgetting them again. He knew his past, but the details had disappeared from him since his transformation. He was a new lion. He would leave all that behind. He just hoped that a young, innocent lioness like Masika didn't get herself caught up in the mess, and what would make that worse, getting herself hurt. He dared not look at her now. But he awaited Fusan to continue.

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Fri Dec 19, 2014 6:25 pm

Fusan proceeded without pausing, glancing up into the sky, checking the moon to make sure he was not spending too much time on precise details. He planned to only stay for one night in the pride before leaving, and so it was that he wanted to make sure he finished the story on time, instead of leaving everyone wondering how it ended. “While Jaz and Relic continued to speak, with Ayo eventually joining in on the conversation, the group rapidly became fast friends, after they took great interest in each other’s lives. The peace of it, however, was short lived. After a certain passing of time, there was a great commotion in the wooly rhinoceros herd, as from a frozen hill in the distance, a large number of elephant-like creatures, called wooly mammoths, charged down, and without any sort of reason behind it, began to attack the rhinos, regardless of male, female, adult or calf.” He said. “The chaos grew so rapidly, that the three did not have time to process the information. They were separated, and forced to flee.” He said.

"Later, Relic, Ayo, and Jaz found each other again in a location further north. Jaz, who had gone back to check on the herd, was badly broken by what he had seen in the aftermath." Fusan shook his head, "The rhinoceros herd, which had been enormous by any standard, had been completely destroyed. As far as anyone could tell, nobody had survived, aside from Jaz, as though he had been spared by some miracle. The most terrible about it, was that they had been attacked by another species that was normally peaceful, and it had been an unprovoked attack, in which the mammoths had deliberately come to kill others." The Storyteller's ears lowered, as though he hated this part of the story himself, "All of Jaz's family had been murdered in a single day, and the news that he had managed to gather was chilling. Once more, the topic of the andrewsaurus came up, as Jaz had reported, that the leader of the mammoth herd, apparently, seemed to believe the same maddening thing as the rhinoceros leader, and that this creature had ordered him to cause as much death and destruction as possible with his followers."

"With no other option left, Jaz opted to travel with Rune and Ayo, the trio unanimously deciding that if left unchecked, the philosophy of the andrewsaurus would continue to spread, and pull an increasing number of innocent creatures into a state of war and turmoil. They all continued to move further north, and as they traveled, they gathered information from a wide variety of sources, thanks to Jaz's assistance using his ability." Fusan explained. "Because I seem to be pressing for ending at the right time, and because information is extremely vague at this point, please pardon me for losing the elaboration I previously had.."

"As they traveled, they encountered more survivors, who had been thrown into situations much like Jaz. These survivors, who had suffered first-hand the effects of war, had been set adrift as more and more creatures became involved, living as wanderers without family. They came from many places, seemingly having traversed impossible distances, and by mere chance, meeting Relic's growing band of creatures. More members joined the group, so I will give you brief descriptions of them." Fusan cleared his throat, "Two more primate creatures such as apes or monkeys, whose exact identity as creatures has been lost to time. A powerful male, by the name of Afolabi, and a female of a different kind, named Folami. Next, a cave-hyena, by the name of Kojo. A massive eagle, rescued from a terrible situation, later pledged his loyalty to Relic as a vassal, and was known by the name of Lekan. A small male, leopard-like creature who was rather feeble, known as Nuru, joined them. A prehistoric tiger female, named Nomusa. A giant jaguar female by the name of Ogechi became a kind of 'medical lioness' for the group. An unnamed warrior whom we cannot remember, who was considered the strongest of all of them, was a proud saber-toothed tiger, of a race of creatures that was the largest of felines in history, known for seemingly being fearless." Fusan checked the moon's position again, "There were several others, but nobody was able to find enough information to be conclusive at all." He mused.

Continuing with the story, Fusan skipped ahead. "Now, there were multiple gaps in the history, so forgive me when it seems like my story is full of holes. I will also have to wrap up this story, so also pardon my abruptness, but it is quite late. It is said, that one day, they came upon the place where the army of the andrewsaurus was. By this time, the group had become involved in the war as a sort of rebel army, and had gained a sort of fame among many groups, for protecting the innocent from the reign of terror. It was said that during this time, Relic discovered that he had possessed a special ability, which would enable him to finally defeat the root of the problem causing the war."

Fusan tilted his head, "The group began in a battle the next day, and it was said, once again, that miracles occurred. Miraculously, nobody innocent was killed, however, many of Relic's band were too severely injured, and were forced to retreat in order to avoid death. It eventually occurred that Relic alone faced the andrewsaurus. It is said that this andrewsaurus possessed strange powers, and it was said, though never observed, that Relic suffered much at his enemy's paws, before turning the tide. Eventually, after what was said to be seven suns, Relic's battle with his foe ended, and the enemy was officially defeated. At this time, the enemy armies surrendered, as though sensing their defeat."

Fusan's tail flicked, "What occurred next, was that the andrewsaurus, as well as his most loyal followers, totaling nine in all, were put to death, and it is said, that those who were unwilling in fighting with the army took control, and also ended the lives of an incredible number of subordinates who still bore loyalty." He shook his head, "At this time, the history stopped, and nobody knew where Relic or his band had gone. They had simply vanished without a trace. There are legends, though, surrounding what occurred. I cannot say much more, however. That is the story, as records will show." He said.


He looked around at the audience, "That was the story I had intended to tell all of you, but it seems that I ran out of time. I do not tell stories after moon-high, but I will elaborate on information if I have it. I must cut myself short, or the young ones in the audience will not get a full night's rest. Please be aware, that this story is vague, primarily because as more time passes in the history, the less information that seems to exist as to what happened. As a storyteller, I am to entertain you, however, I am also a historian, who chronicles and retells such events, without distorting them using any sort of exaggeration or imagined conversation."


Masika, who was sitting next to Kavis, seemed surprised, "That's odd...Fusan never tells stories and runs out of time. He doesn't tell ones with incomplete history on a regular basis, either. This pride must have really made him think of it, for him to tell the story..." She said.

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Wed Jan 07, 2015 11:00 pm

Kavis looked puzzled, although he didn't give it much thought. He shrugged, not knowing much about the storyteller, Fusan. He only drew his gaze from the male and looked at Masika, although even still avoiding her eyes. He gazed at her shoulder instead. "What do you think is so important about the story?"

Shebla pushed through the crowds, which were clearing as Fusan had finished his story. They carried along with them their amazed opinions of the story. Shebla had dazed eyes and many people didn't pay much mind to her, so she had to push her way through rather forcefully. She finally stumbled out before Fusan.

"Fusan... if you've got time... I would really like to talk to you, alone. My name is Shebla."

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Thu Jan 08, 2015 10:59 pm

Masika followed Kavis’ eyes quickly, and shifted so that he was forced to make eye contact, “The reason the story is important, is because there was a legend, that said that the andrewsaurus and his followers will fool death and return.” Her face had a serious expression on it. “It sounds crazy, but how is it, really, when supposedly, the night after the battle, it was discovered that the bodies of the fallen had all vanished, without any trace of where they had been? Fusan left that out, he only tells those who ask, because it frightens cubs.” She tilted her head, “The story is true, but how do hundreds or even thousands of bodies suddenly disappear in one night? Additionally, no one ever discovered where Relic or his band went, and likewise, no one has ever been able to find the bodies of the andrewsaurus and the eight followers that made up the group of nine.” She said.

Fusan looked quizzical, “You have questions about the story? I only know so much about it, but there were certain details that frighten cubs that I happened to leave out on purpose.” He looked at the now-dissipating group of lions that had been listening to the story, as though checking to ensure that nobody overheard him. He lowered his voice, “Very well, I will speak with you alone, but where should we go to have this conversation? I will tell you what you wish to know, to the best of my ability.”

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Fri Jan 09, 2015 12:23 am

Shebla looked around, watching for eavesdroppers. She then looked back at Fusan. "Follow me," she said. Immediately she turned and began walking in the direction of the medical den, although she padded past the entrance and rounded the corner near the shore of the lake an made her past the den and up a ravine which swirled just at its side. It was more quiet here and when they had stopped in a place where they were out of earshot, she turned to face Fusan.

"I have a lot of questions about your story. But first let me tell you one of mine." Shebla paused before she went on. "The story is just too long for me to tell from the very beginning. But I will just briefly summarize. Snake was a lion whom did many horrible things. After he died, his family sought revenge. Snake's daughter Subira and her brother Var are the only known survivors of his offspring. There could be other daughters of his out there though, all we know is that all of the sons except Var were killed. Anyways, Snake's heir was a huge black-furred lion named Kavis. Kavis declared a horrid war assisted by his family and his abominable mother, Aziza, a female who forever held a grudge against me for an accident long ago."

Shebla looked at her paws. "There was a lion that came to this Pride named Ammon. He was an enemy of Gamba, and the adoptive father of Kyra. He bears a strong resemblance to Relic from your story. He has nearly white fur, and the story of how Relic caught more prey than others his age normally would matched an event so similar from Ammon's past. I just... I just can't help but wonder if there's some type of connection."

Suddenly, her eyes began to water up, but she refused to let herself cry. Not a single tear fell for now. "Kavis came onto these grounds during the burial of my old mentor, Kamuzu. Aziza and Ammon fought, but Ammon could not take on Kavis. Nobody could. Kavis was simply too strong. It took half the pride simply to knock him off of his paws.... But even then, Ammon was one of the strongest lions here. Kavis knew that and wanted him gone, because he knew that his hyena army didn't possess the same strength as him and would fall easily at the paws of Ammon. So naturally, Ammon wanted to spare the conflict and offered to leave, in return that Kavis not harm us. But when he left, Kavis broke his promise and hurt us anyways..." Shebla shook her head, looking up. "Since then we forgave Kavis and allowed him to even live among us. But Ammon is still gone. I've been told so many times that one day the two of us will meet again, but with every sunup and sunset my doubts grow even stronger. I just want him to come back... and soon...."

___________________________________________________________________________________________________

Kavis tensed upon looking into Masika's eyes. He darted immediately to his paws, looking rather funny moving his head with such awkward quickness. Although past the humor his heart's awful condition still reflected all over his body. His entire body seemed stiff from anxiety, which was unhealthy. He still seemed to carry his pessimistic view in his head, and it was somewhat clear to those who looked that he was still doubting his place in life. "Do you think the andrewsaurus will return?" he murmured nervously. There were two things about people that scared him. Dominant males and females as a whole. Males were intimidating to him in his current state. Females however were another story. He wanted to have the friendship of females simply for their moral differences from males. They were capable of understanding better. But even then, one who understood him was hard to come across, at least to him. He felt like a female would view him as a low-life outcast. Most would. Most would much more prefer their time to be spent in the company of an impressive dominant male with authority. He knew now that his days in that position were long gone.

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sat Jan 10, 2015 9:33 am

Fusan tilted his head, “Time and its passing is a relative thing, and it brings about change. To you, a day may not seem much, but there are creatures whose entire lifetimes can pass within a day after their birth. Mortals will view time differently, because we are all different. A lion may live hundreds of generations in the eyes of an insect, and a monkey for generations among lions. If you were told it was a short time, and by something that was not of the mortal world, as I suspect, then you may find that it is actually longer than you may think. A full change of the seasons may pass in the blink of an eye to a creature that does not die, for time does not matter as much then.” He said.

“That in mind, do not become disheartened by what I say.” He looked around to make sure no one was looking, “There is, actually, something about what you have stated, which corresponds with the story. It has nothing to deal with this Kavis character, or anyone else you have mentioned, save for this lion Ammon.” He lowered his voice, “There is a legend associated with the story, which I often omit, for fear of frightening cubs.” He said, before taking a deep breath, “Did you know that after the battle, the bodies of all that had fallen on the enemy side suddenly vanished the night after the end of the war, and that there was no trace of where they had gone? The same could be said of the andrewsaurus and the loyal followers who were executed. Those on the winning side sought out Relic and his band for help in locating their supposedly vanquished enemy, but they could not be found, either.” He said, stating the secret that he did not know had already been told by someone else to another individual.

Fusan continued, “It was said that they searched far and wide, but the heroes were nowhere to be found. Legend has it, though, that a strange lion with symbols that had seemingly been burned into his skin approached the group. He was described as possessing a vine that twined around his body, alive, even though it was snowing. By his side walked a warrior who was blind, also with symbols carved into his skin, although he moved and behaved as though he still had sight. This pair terrified those who were searching for Relic and his band, for the warrior was said to have eyes that saw everything, and the strange lion with the vine was said to know the secrets of those he saw, and hear things that imparted knowledge beyond what most mortals know.”

“If I recall, there were two lions in your pride that looked like this, when I arrived, how could I not notice? It seemed odd to me, so I thought to ponder over it before I slept, whether I should mention this detail to your King or not.” He shook his head, and continued, “This set aside, when the strange pair met the group, the Kubwa Muti opened his mouth, and spoke something that has always been carefully preserved. Storytellers dare not distort a single word,” He took a deep breath, “What he said, was this:

‘The means by which your foes have vanished shall never be known to mortal eyes, for it is by the work of great power that these deeds are done. No one shall know its name, save for those whom it wishes to know. Few words may describe it, though you will not understand. It is the shade between dark and light, the sunset and sunrise between day and night, the moment a cub takes its first breath, and when life crosses the boundaries marking death.’”


Fusan finished the quote, before continuing, “After this, the warrior by his side spoke, and also, this was preserved, word for word:

‘Your foes are only gone for a while, for the mission has not been made whole. They shall return from the grave with the power they stole! And by the words of the power we serve, this shall be known: They will break the seal when the boundary of life and death disappears. They shall manipulate from the shadows, playing on their victim’s fears, and once more, plunge the world into chaos and war.’”

Fusan continued, “After this, the healer took up, and spoke a final time:

‘In a twisted place a new hero shall be born, and raised from birth in hatred and scorn. His birth will be dark, but his heart filled with light, and his fur will turn from gold to white. The followers he gathers before he comes, many young, thrown away, broken, and hurt in several ways, will all play a part. Until the foe is defeated for good, beware their forces.’


Fusan stopped, “After this, a large number of the army, save for their leaders, fled in fear of the two, because they could not understand what any of the words meant. One of them asked, though, what it meant, the final reply was also recorded:

‘We may not tell you. The key of heart shall ask the seer with sight. It is done! The words have been spoken! May they not be forgotten!’

Fusan finished, “It was very descriptive, but at the time, nobody had any idea what the riddles meant, and the healer and the warrior did not explain. Most still do not understand what mysterious force they spoke on the behalf of. All I can tell you is that some of this may correspond with this lion, Ammon. If he was born with golden fur, and it turned white, that is one part of the prophesy. The other, is if he was born in a bad place, and was raised under cruel treatment.” He tilted his head, “It does not say much of the followers that are gathered, but it seems they are also destined to suffer, somehow, and at a very young age.”

He continued, “If this corresponds, it is possible that the enemy has already returned from the grave, and beneath our notice, is beginning to cause trouble that will eventually lead to widespread war.”



Masika looked intently at Kavis, “I believe that he has already returned. Remember what I mentioned earlier about that small area of forest up north? When do bees and other insects attack without warning? When do birds do the same? How do all the creatures in a forest suddenly act strange, and then vanish without a trace?” Her gaze grew darker, “There are storm clouds brewing; there is tension building in groups from all four directions. Hostilities are springing up, fights are nearly breaking out in what should be peaceful meetings. It’s happening everywhere but here. A terrible war is imminent, and this is the news that we nomads are afraid to mention.”

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PostSubject: Re: Pride Days (IC)   Sun Feb 22, 2015 3:28 am

Shebla seemed somewhat disturbed by the story and gave a worried look to Fusan. "If the enemy has returned..." she glanced around worriedly, looking over her shoulder to see if anyone in the medical den was listening. "What do we do? Is there a way to prevent all of these horrible things from happening?" Her tail shook nervously. Deep down she missed Ammon, but she surprised it and refused to dwell on it. It only brought pain, and for so long she had worked to forget Ammon, or at least, to shake him from consuming her thoughts so that she may go about her everyday life undisturbed. She knew he would come back. She trusted Egret's word on that. But she had to learn to let the sadness go and the key there was to keep her mind occupied with other things, like her job.

______________________________________________________

Kavis looked at her with a face that tried to express concern. Although he did not quite yet grasp the severity of the situation and was left only forcing the face. "What can be done then?" he asked. "What's the prophecy say about stopping it?" He began to get up and move away from the hub of the Pride and steer the conversation into the dark night woods where he hoped nobody would hear them. He looked over his gaunt shoulders every few seconds, afraid that anyone was listening.

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