Closed The Red in the White

[GST Adventure for Allister, Madeira, and Jomi] Do what you're told and no one gets hurt, savvy?

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This is Falyndar at its finest. Danger lurks everywhere - in the ground, in the trees, in the bush. Only the strongest survive...

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The Red in the White

Postby Allister on May 8th, 2019, 2:41 am

ImageThere was nothing in the river of time as the ticks passed from one to the next. The end of the battle came swiftly but the balance of adrenaline and senses swept over the kelvic like a tsunami of thoughts and images that he hadn’t the power to process. The great beast was roaring with anger, fear and determination in one of the hyena’s ears but then it was silent against the opposite. The tumble was not pleasant but the pain of a few dozen scrapes and scratches had given the kelvic an out of body sensation which seemed to misplace the superficial feelings of pain and heat. In truth, the former slave had grown more accustomed to pain since joining the service of the Lady Craven than when he was a piece of property. Curious.

Allister woke in a dream. He was warm, sheltered and still- like a greater creature had taken him under her wing in protection. Then the scream settled in like a beckon passed through a waterfall- Madeira. Black eyes flew open and pale limbs flailed under the heavy weight of a carapace that chaffed the soft, exposed flesh of the bonded beast. He groaned and strained until the battered arms emerged from below the dead insect -mighty even in its death. Allister tore and pulled at the foliage until he was free from his burden and was able to stand. Zero regard was given for anyone or anything -including himself- until he was able to lay his desperate stare upon the wild eyes of bluest sky.

The bond sang with his relief that she was ok and it rejoiced in her beauty. She looked powerful with her breeches, crossbow and heaving chest as she fought to regain her normal, regulated breath. The wicked smile slipped over his features and the hyena let loose a war cry that rolled into sick laughter. This merriment continued as the former slave doubled over at the way Jomi addressed the humans who had volunteered to help with the mission. Was it cruelty? Was it curiosity? Or was it something less corrupted than either of those things that spun the interaction? Sometimes, life just happened and Jomi- being dead- had a way of making things much more interesting.

The naked man was about to make his way back to his lady when he began to cough. Always bound to his sickly innards, the salt air had purified his breathing issues. However, the dense moisture in the jungle cobbled up the airways with mucus and phlegm. It was hard to describe but there was a certain kind of satisfaction attained when Allister was able to wrest a thick glob of the lung butter up into his mouth with a grinding gurgle that echoed against the tall canopy. He pushed the lugie to the side of his cheek then spit it out with all the practiced grace of a ten-year-old bully.

Black eyes returned to settle upon the huge bug. It was impressive as it was dead. The kelvic ran his hands over the thick shell which covered the pinchers and the forelegs. The curve reminded him of something as his pale fingertips trailed along the slowly shifting color. The somewhat dim-witted young man showcased a look that few people would ever experience -pure elation! The pieces fell into place and Allister could not be more proud of himself for the idea. The curve was subtle enough but also long and lean just like the sculpted figure of one limber spiritist.

Just then, the hyena realized that one of the humans was a stride away with a machete. “May I?” He cooed while bony fingers reached for the blade. Allister wasn’t expecting any resistance and closed the distance without a care despite being completely nude.

The sailor rolled his eyes and extended the blade at the weird apparition. He was already regretting his decision to accompany the passengers on this doomed quest. When the weapon transfer had been finished, he muttered something under his breath about the Otani.

Allister didn’t hear nor would he have cared. He took the big knife and walked back to the massive pincher. The grip was nice but the metal was far heavier than he would have expected. He made a few rough swings through the air and enjoyed the soft singing of the blade. “This feels..” he said mostly to himself. With a high hand, something he’d seen many-a person do with such a tool, the former slave hoisted the machete into the air above his head then brought it down with a thwack into the side of the creature’s leg. He was well off the intended mark but he finished his sentence anyway- “fantastic!”

It took several chimes but Allister managed to hack enough of the carapace away from the pincher that he was able to tear the remaining bits which held everything together. His arms and back rippled with muscles as his legs dug in and his entire body worked with strain and pressure to disassemble the once magnificent beast of its armor. Machete chops here, muscle-popping twists there and he soon had several pieces of natural protection for his lady. The kelvic gave the sailor his weapon then gathered the pieces and it was in this effort that the obsidian stare saw something strange.

There, in a crag of recently exposed layers of the bug, was something that glittered. Allister was attracted to shiny things- it was part of the appeal that Madeira held though it wasn’t necessary to feed his infatuation. The hyena tilted his head to one side and leaned in closer with a slow descent that rivaled that of an old man stooping to fetch a dropped pinch of tobacco. Delicate gold vines formed an intricate cage that resembled an arrowhead. Inside was a stone that was shimmering with blues and whites- the likes of which the kelvic had never seen. Ghastly hands dropped their haul and tore into the carcass with an efficient kind gentleness that the performer had discovered during his time as a personal entertainer. He drew forth the bauble to reveal a slender chain attached at one end of the amulet.

This made his heart leap for joy and it sent ripples through the bond. Such a gift to hold and to present it with the equipment to make some armor for his beloved was a bounty that Allister was itching to share. The Lady Craven deserved so much more than the hyena would ever have to give but at least this newly found treasure felt like a real present. Hurridly, the bonded youngster gathered up all he had attained and trotted through the ferns, ivy, vines and broadleafs until he came to be by the bright-eyed star of his universe. He dumped the shell fragments next to her and waved a hand for a more flamboyant display. “These will help keep you safe!” He huffed in a half breath, hands quickly vanished behind his naked form.

Allister bowed his head and dropped down to both knees then lifted the amulet up to her for inspection, reception and -hopefully- praise. “This was inside the thing.” The gorgeous gem twinkled in the emptiness of his black orbs as they sheened with the misting of tears while he looked from one beautiful object to the next. “Only you could wear something so pretty.”
Pain without love is meaningless
Love without pain is selfish
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The Red in the White

Postby Madeira Craven on May 9th, 2019, 3:26 am

    Wiping sweat from her brow with the back of her hand, Madeira converged with the rest. Allister was fighting to get out from underneath the exoskeleton, leaving great furrows in the vegetation. Jomi was fighting for his exhausted form to be seen. Tav was cleaning the blood from his recovered arrows and Enda was hovering at the edges, cleaning gore from his machete. This little adventure had cost them precious time. Was it her imagination, or was the horizon looking a little lighter?

    Tav was the first to speak. And far from the grudging acceptance he had previously sustained with Madeira as his leader, now he showed something almost like respectful deference. Even Enda was looking more sullen and embarrassed than cross. The Inarta suggested going the opposite way down the beach, and Madeira agreed with the sense of it.

    "Okay, we'll go-"

    But that last comment was more than Jomi could take. With a whip of agitated soulmist the ghost launched into a venomous tirade. They needed him much more than he needed them. He was willing to let them die there if he was not shown the proper respect. Around the same time Allister had joined the band, politely borrowing the machete and returning to the carcass. The cracking of the exoskeleton and his wild laughter sounded like the theme song of this group that was so quickly falling apart.

    Madeira rounded on the ghost first, sensing the danger in his inflated sense of power.

    "That is not how we are doing this! If you can't recognize that you petched up in scouting us here, you're more deluded than I thought. Your life might not be on the line, but ours are. If you go ahead to Lhavit you will do so alone." she looked the ghost dead in the eye, willing him to remember Edith, and the promise Madeira gave him to find her.

    When she looked back at the group as a whole she stood a little taller, her eyes burning blue and cold in the light of the torch. She rallied her dijed, pulling it from her soul like a spider pulls silk. She wove it into the taught lines of her neck and the set of her shoulders. It rose like wisps of cobweb from the unbending line of her back. Hypnotism rolled off her posture in waves with a very simple response that spread across the three men. A compulsion to listen reached forward to their minds to try and hook into their very bones.

    "Lets make this very clear, Jomi and Allister are not just my ghost and my Kelvic, they belong to you, too. And you better believe your asses belong to us. We are a team. All of us. We need Tav and his arrows, we need Enda to watch our backs, we need Al and his brute force, we need my head in a crisis and we need our indestructible ghost to scout. So I need all you boys to petching pull up your big boy britches and work with each other, because we won't make it alone."

    Just then Allister came stumbling back, splattered with the bug's fluid and carrying an armful of... something. He was smiling madly, and in their bond Madeira could feel how pleased he was with himself. He dumped what looked like shell fragments at her feet, declaring that these would keep her safe. She stared at him for a long moment, her face stone like and unreadable, then turned her back on him and continued addressing the rest of the group.

    "Tav had a good idea; lets follow the beach back the other way. Jomi will search high and the rest of us will just have to keep our eyes open. But this time we'll set Al loose in the bordering forest. If he can kick up enough of a racket perhaps we can scare the bird out and Tav and I can try to shoot it down."

    Without anything clearer to go on other than this bird would likely be wherever this bug wasn't, it was the best they could do. She could feel the time limit was starting to tighten like a noose around their throats.

    "Go on ahead, I need to talk to Allister for a moment."

    She would wait until they were gone, insisting if she had to, and only when the last of them disappeared through the thick jungle growth would she turn to face her beloved bondmate.

    The kelvic was on his knees, the bond moving in lazy currents of devoted affection as he presented her with a pretty little trinket he found. It was a delicate silver necklace with a beautiful pendent. With teary eyes Allister declared only she could wear something so pretty.

    With a crack that echoed off the trees Madeira slapped the necklace out of his hands.

    "You complete, utter fool!" she choked, holding back the rage that was building in her throat. "Is that pretty thing going to find us a feather? Will it save our ship? This is not a game! You almost died! Charging in like that with a petching stick! If Jomi wasn't there you- you would have-"

    A Craven doesn't cry. With a curse she aimed a kick at the shell fragments he brought her. This was all so messed up in her head. She wanted to fall into his arms and strangle him all at once. And this poor, idiotic, brave and delusional beast was going to be her... She shook her head as if trying to clear it of water.

    "This is not a game", she reiterated, forcing herself into calm. "At dawn we will all be dead, and these shells won't protect me. I need you to protect me. I'm... Allister, I'm..."

    Say it, she told herself. For the love of gods, say it. Make it real. There was no turning back.

    "Petch, Allister, I'm pregnant", she snarled, and something in her gut clenched to hear those fateful words out loud. "I need you. I need you alive and whole. Do you understand?" She reached for him with tenderness, cupping his head in both hands, and forcing him to look her in the eye. "We need to get out of this jungle. No more delays, no more sidetracking. We need to find that feather and we need to get back on that ship. This is... Oh gods, Allister, we need to go home. There is more at stake here than just our lives, okay?"

    She waited for a response. Anything to show he knew the gravity of the situation they were in. And once he did she let him go.

    "The others are waiting for us", was all she said.

    It took her longer than the others to fight her way through the undergrowth. But eventually she stumbled her way to the beach and back into the fold. She fell in with the others, her eyes trained upwards, looking for this illusive bird in the dark. Her mind, however, was turning in dark, spiraling circles and couldn't seem to focus on the task. The enormity of the words she had spoken kept vibrating in her head.
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    The Red in the White

    Postby Taurina on June 5th, 2019, 5:36 am

    The elation and relief that often came with a battle won was short lived in the hearts of the ragtag team. Instead there was strife between the men and the ghost; and the Kelvic had only thoughts of his mistress. Tension grew as blood boiled, threats were thrown, and the levees that held stress at bay cracked open wide. The darkness of night was starting to run out. The lady Craven had it right.

    There was chaos as Jomi grew angry and Allister hacked away at the insect’s cooling carcass. A swirling of charge energy raced through the small clearing as each person took the chance to let out bursts of emotion. What specifically was said is of very little consequence. Madeira called them all to her using a power of the mystical sort before any could leave and put their seemingly doomed mission in more jeopardy than it was already in. As the influence took over their minds, forcing them to forfeit their own immediate impulses, agreement came. At least from the two sailors who, though now held more respect for their leader, greatly disliked their positions on this Otani given task.

    One by one the people filtered out of the clearing as they were ordered to. Enda took back his machete from wherever Allister had dropped it and followed Tav who followed Jomi. They would do as Madeira ordered and go back towards the beach, working their way backwards as Jomi searched the treetops. The look on Tav’s face was quite smug as Madeira chose his idea. The thoughts in his head rolling with pride.

    When they left the bubble of territory the giant insect had made for itself, sound would hit them from every angle. The chattering of birds calling, the pattering of feet against the group floor, the shaking of disturbed leaves, and the buzzing of the air. The bird had not made its home easy to find, but at least Jomi knew now what not to look for. To stay away from territories cloaked in silence. That a nest of feathers, sticks, and leaves was far more likely than a nest of bones. If he looked close, he would find white feathers that held just the slightest of a glow scattered one, two, here and there. Perhaps their bird was closer than they thought.

    The pendant offered up to his mistress as a gift to be found most pleasing sparkled brilliantly under the moonlight sky. As Allister held it up flat in the palm of his hand, it would turn itself so that its tip would point directly towards her. The movement was nothing slow, but like a declaration of his adoration would show exactly what his heart desired. Her. To make her happy. To protect her. To give her all of himself. All for it to be rejected as she slapped the pendant out of his hand and demanded he listen to her.

    The sailors were already out of earshot when the lady finally released what she had kept bottled up inside. As the weight of what she had been holding fell to the ground beneath her feet and shared itself with the Kelvic she held so dear. It was probably a good thing, gave them the moment to share alone, but they would not have long. Though it might have felt like time had stopped, Tanroa didn’t pause the workings of the world so two might find their bearings again. No, time was always ticking by.

    Allister would do best to pick up once more the pendant which had flown before he followed his lady through the trees. For if he changed the desire of his heart just slightly, it might lead them directly to their salvation. But only time would tell if he would do just that. If he could even figure out the strange properties of the mysterious object so quickly after his reality had been shaken so violently.

    Time would tell indeed…

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    The Red in the White

    Postby Jomi on June 24th, 2019, 9:56 pm

    "That is not how we are doing this! If you can't recognize that you petched up in scouting us here, you're more deluded than I thought."

    Jomi seethed silently, keeping his eyes on Allister as he wandered behind the mangled monster corpse. Anything to keep from looking in his Master's eyes.

    How was he suppose to know which nest was the right one? And more than that, the posh little waif seemed to conveniently forget just how close she had come to being bug food. As the ghost saw it, his possession skills were the only reason the group was still alive.

    "-If you go ahead to Lhavit you will do so alone."

    And there it is.

    It was Madeira's favourite trick to pull when her servant deviated from her wishes. Every time they fought or disagreed Craven would threaten to abandon his bondmate. It was Jomi's singular goal and the reason for his continued existence. Because of that she knew he had no choice but to go along with whatever she asked. The ghost was starting to notice the vast gap of power in their relationship. And he resented it.

    Allister returned with a fist full of shells and a shiny bauble as Madeira began to speak. And as she spoke hypnotism radiated out and attacked the group from within. Even Jomi, who knew of the magic his Master wielded and thus could identify it as the trick it was, wasn't immune to its pull. The weak minded, Kelvic ghost perked up at her rousing words. A simple plan was laid at their feet and everyone's role was assigned. Jomi was glade to have something else to focus on.

    "Go on ahead, I need to talk to Allister for a moment."

    Jomi drifted up into the trees as the humans fought their way out of the dense underbrush. A sharp crack of skin on skin echoed off the greenery making Jomi wince. He knew the pain of a being admonished by a bondmate. It was the more painful to a Kelvic than a hundred lashes with a belt lit on fire. As much as the hot headed ghost was resentful of Allister and his bond he couldn't help but feel a prick of sympathy for the creature.

    The ghost maneuvered through the canopy with ease. His eyes flicked down occasionally to the humans in order to orientate himself, lest his wanderings take him further into the jungle. Now soundly out of the monsters territory the jungle came alive with the endless chattering of a vibrant terrain so packed full of life. Jomi found his attentions scattered with the amount of sensory input that assaulted him form all sides. Every streak of white or glitter of light was met with a thorough investigation by the stressed out ghost.

    It was only after a nest of jewel bright beetles, startled by his shroud, came pouring out of the warped shell of a massive tree that Jomi saw a glimmer of hope. The frantic buzzing let loose a single white feather which had lodged itself in the thick patched of fungi that feasted on the rotting wood. The glow wasn't obvious at first, the light of the pre-dawn dampened the feathers natural shine, but it was there and the implications were huge.

    Jomi snatched at the feather and blinked his way down to the group with newfound vigour.

    "I found something!" The ghosts face beamed as he presented his find held tight in his spectral fist. "I think were getting close, keep your eyes on the trees."

    Once finished with his proclamation the ghost vanished once again. He worked his way up to the thick branches and staked out the surrounding forest for another hint of the white feathers.
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