Solo The trouble with chances II

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Syka is a new settlement of primarily humans on the east coast of Falyndar opposite of Riverfall on The Suvan Sea. [Syka Codex]

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The trouble with chances II

Postby D'Varrus Tomva on May 16th, 2022, 8:48 pm

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71st of Spring, 522 AV

“There isn’t any need for that. I could have stayed in my jaguar form and taken a different approach. I didn’t because I wanted to talk, so how about we start with a name.” D’Varrus said, relaxing his arms somewhat but still holding them out to his sides. He didn’t want to make this woman any more nervous than she already was.

When the woman hesitated, he decided that perhaps his appearance was perturbing her. “Again, my name is D’Varrus Tomva. I am a kelvic, and I didn’t bring any clothes along with me because I didn’t intend on changing form. I ran into you on accident while chasing a pig. Now what is your name?” D’Varrus asked, keeping his voice low and slow.

“Indigo.” The woman said, finally breaking the silence. D’Varrus visibly relaxed although he didn’t put his hands down just yet.

“Okay, nice to meet you Indigo. I can see that you understand me now.” D’Varrus said, trying to buy time while he considered this new development. While it was good that he knew that they could communicate now, that brought up other issues. Namely why had she continued to be so standoffish after he had properly announced himself several times. Matthias wasn’t joking when he said that his people were wary.

“Is there anything I can do for you, or would you like to go back to your hunt?” D’Varrus asked finally relaxing his hands all the way so they hung loosely at his sides. Indigo’s bow was now pointing at the ground and her finger was no longer on the draw string.

Indigo shook her head. “Not hunting.”

D’Varrus blinked slowly, then shook his head slightly in confusion.

“What?”

“Not hunting” Indigo clarified.

“Then what are you doing?” D’Varrus asked, suddenly wondering what he was missing about this interaction.

Indigo swallowed audibly, and he saw her face tilt towards the ground before she looked up.

“I am lost.” Indigo mentioned through gritted teeth, and D’Varrus felt his expression soften.

“Oh, well you are not far from Syka. Its easy, just head that way till you reach the sea and then follow that back.” D’Varrus said, not understanding what the problem was. They weren’t even very far into the jungle. He had been keeping on the fringes for a reason, and it would barely take a few chimes for her to find her way out. Then once she was on the beach it should have been as easy as keeping the sea on her left.

“Are you new here?” D’Varrus asked, wanting some clarification.

Indigo’s posture stiffened as she balled her free hand into a fist. He got the sense that she was glowering at him although it was hard to observe in the dim light with these eyes. Fortunately he didn’t have to remain guessing for long.

“I don’t need somebody’s pet telling me how to find my way to Syka. I don’t need anyone’s help. I have lived in this jungle before Syka was even an idea. So why don’t you get lost kitty cat before the jungle eats you.” Indigo spat, fuming as she turned on her heel and started walking off deeper into the jungle. Curiously after a few paces she stopped and looked like she was reorienting herself before she stormed off to continue it another few paces further down.

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The trouble with chances II

Postby D'Varrus Tomva on May 16th, 2022, 8:49 pm

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Feeling a little responsible, D’Varrus moved to intercept her but when he did that Indigo began to run away from him. He picked up the pace, jogging after her, then running as she tried to put more distance in between them. Then when it looked like he wouldn’t be able to catch up on two legs he shouted, “Stop!” before transforming.

Taking a tick to reorient himself in this new form, he had no problem picking up her muddy scent and following her by the sounds she made running through the forest. Using four legs he was able to eat up the space she had made until finally he caught a glimpse of her. With eyes more suited to the night, he saw that her skin was covered in mud and on her leather harness she had more than a few weapons attached.

Using his forepaws to spring forward, and his back paws to continue his momentum, he picked up the pace. Because he had warmed up with his little trek across the beach, his muscles responded much better to the activity as he worked himself up into a pant. Still she eluded him.

He was unfamiliar with traversing across such territory so he had to adjust his orientation just as much as she did, and adding to his disadvantage was the fact that he had underwent back to back transformations which left him feeling somewhat depleted as he struggled to keep track of the woman through the jungle.

She was clearly a much better runner, and if she hadn’t had to stop occasionally in confusion, he probably would have lost sight of her altogether by now. As it stood he was able to continue the pursuit, following signs of her passage when he lost sight or couldn’t differentiate the noise she made from others in the jungle.

Eventually though he started to become worried about how deep into the jungle she was taking him, but much too late for it to make any difference because now he wasn’t sure if even he could find his way out with how many twists and turns they had made. It added an edge of desperation as he struggled to keep up with the woman until finally he managed to catch a break when Indigo appeared to trip a ways ahead of him.

As he neared the spot where he had seen her suddenly fall, he slowed down to a walk as he sniffed and listened carefully. There were other scents here, ones that didn’t belong to him or Indigo. Some belonged to creatures he didn’t recognize, but the scent that particularly interested him smelled totally alien to him. It was a blend of something that wasn’t entirely human of that he was sure, and it made him extra cautious as he stalked forward.

Listening he heard Indigo faintly moaning, and unusually the sound came from below him behind a thick stand of bushes. When he didn’t hear anything else besides her, he cautiously circled around the bush, panting loudly because he couldn’t help it after all of that running.

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The trouble with chances II

Postby D'Varrus Tomva on May 16th, 2022, 8:50 pm

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“D’Varrus is that you?” Indigo asked, and their was something plaintive about her tone. It sounded like she was in pain, and confused D’Varrus edged closer to where the sound was coming from. Sticking his head through a bush, he found himself looking down into a modestly deep pit with Indigo crouched at the bottom holding her ankle.

It smelled as if it had been recently dug, and looking around D’Varrus spotted a pile of cut bamboo. Cocking his head to the side curious, he looked back down into the pit and made a deep rumbling sound in the back of his throat to get Indigo’s attention.

The woman immediately looked up at him, bringing up a machete between her and the noise before she somewhat relaxed. Swinging the machete, she got it stuck into the side of the pit before using that as leverage to get to her feet. He noticed how her legs trembled to do even that, and decided that she must have injured her ankle in her fall.

Without thinking it through D’Varrus transformed, and then immediately regretted his decision as his body collapsed. This last transformation had taken more out of him than he expected and so his muscles gave out, leaving an arm hanging dangling over the side of the pit as his head lolled about. He was only lucky that most of his body was laying flat on the ground which prevented him from toppling headfirst into the pit, possibly landing on Indigo.

He didn’t have the time or energy to admonish himself though for his foolishness. Instead he tried briskly shaking his head to dismiss some of this weariness before pushing himself up to a kneeling position while gritting his teeth.

Meanwhile Indigo was grunting as she tried to find a handhold she could use along the side of the pit while gripping the machete for support. Then the machete slipped with a thunk, and Indigo saw her spill onto the ground with a sharp cry of pain.

“Stop. You’re only going to make things worse. Just wait till I get down there to help you out.” D’Varrus groused, and pulled himself up to a standing position by grasping a nearby trailing vine. Tired as he was, his legs were all wobbly underneath him at first until he managed to steady himself against the tree trunk to take a brief breather.

“Well?” Indigo called out indignantly when several moments had passed without a word or noise from him aside from his heavy breathing. Rolling his eyes, D’Varrus balled one of his hands into a fist and beat on the side of the tree a few times.

“Coming. Give me a tick.” He said before he started shambling his way around the pit, using the sides of trees for balance and leverage as he picked his slow way across. When he was on the other side of the pit where the bamboo had been collected, he hesitated for a moment before dropping into a crouch beside the pile. He was surprised to find a few in the pile had been sharpened to a point and he picked one up to test it.

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The trouble with chances II

Postby D'Varrus Tomva on May 16th, 2022, 8:51 pm

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It was strangely hollow down through the middle, but not in a way that looked like it had been done purposefully. It had grown this way of that he was certain. Tapping it against his palm he thought that it felt rather sturdy and had a decent heft to it. He just had to hope that it would work for their purposes.

“Alright, I’m going to put these sticks into the pit with you. They look sturdy enough that we might be able to use them to get you out. Watch your head.” D’Varrus said before lowering the bundle into the pit slowly. Looking down, he was relieved that Indigo was on the opposite side of the pit hugging the wall there while she watched him drop the bamboo when he had extended his arms as far as they would go.

The pit wasn’t exceptionally deep. Around ten feet if he had to guess, so he just had to hope these would give him enough support to get Indigo out of there. Of course that required him to go down there first but before he did so, he gathered three of the sharpened stakes before he scooted over to the edge of the pit and slipped over the side.

Landing with a thud, D’Varrus almost slipped in the muddy dirt at the bottom of the pit and started wheeling backwards to catch his balance. To his surprise Indigo caught him under the arms before letting out a loud grunt of pain as both of them knocked into the other side of the narrow pit.

D’Varrus immediately dropped what he was holding and spun about to check on Indigo who was holding her shoulder while fixing him with a glare that cut through the darkness.

“Sorry. Are you alright?” D’Varrus asked awkwardly because there was an uncertainty to his voice that he was unused to.

Indigo rolled her eyes. “What do you think? Why did you hop down into the pit anyways?” She asked in a clipped tone.

D’Varrus shrugged, and gestured towards the bamboo he had brought down.

“I’m getting you out of here.” He explained before turning around to start picking up the three sharpened stakes.

“You said sticks. These aren’t sticks. These are bamboo stakes, likely meant to go in this pit when it is finished.” Indigo snapped when his back was to her. D’Varrus ignored the biting comment and moved to the edge of the pit. Grabbing the bamboo stake from the base, he winded back his arms before driving it into the side of the pit with as much effort as he could manage. It sank a few inches into the muddy earth, and D’Varrus had to wonder if he should count this as a blessing or not because it didn’t exactly bode well for the stability of what he intended.

Picking up another stake, he drove it into the earth beside the first and then had to take a break. Leaning against the wall panting, he tried to catch his breath as he considered their predicament which wouldn’t be over even after they managed to escape the pit. They were still going to be quite lost in the jungle, and D’Varrus didn’t have the faintest clue about how to get back.

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The trouble with chances II

Postby D'Varrus Tomva on May 16th, 2022, 8:52 pm

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“Why did you go running off into the jungle if you were lost? What sense does that make? You should have just let me guide you out when I could have.” D’Varrus complained as he turned to glance over at Indigo who was leaning against the side of the wall with her arms crossed and her right foot slightly raised at a bent angle off of the ground.

“I told you I don’t need any help. Why did you follow me? If you hadn’t followed me I wouldn’t have fallen into this pit.” Indigo growled before curtly looking away from him which was hard to do in a pit that was barely four feet wide.

“I followed you because it would have been my fault if something happened to you after I left you in the jungle by yourself. You said you were lost right? How the petch did you get lost when the edge of the jungle was so close?” D’Varrus demanded, frustration leaking out into his voice.

Indigo rolled her eyes and with considerably effort turned away so she was facing the side of the pit with her back to him. D’Varrus pushed off the wall in a huff as he grabbed another stake and drove it as hard as he could into the wet earth. When he let it drop onto the bottom of the pit alongside the other two, it looked like he had made a mini ramp out of the bamboo but it only raised him about a foot off the ground when he climbed on top of it. It also bent ominously towards the center so he decided to use the rest of the bamboo he had gathered to support his contraption. To this end he stuffed the bamboo in the empty space under his make shift ramp and then tried walking on it again.

This time it supported him without the ominous bend in the middle though he had to make sure to walk on the ridges that were periodically spaced along the length of the bamboo. The smooth parts were slick and easy to slip off of. He also would have to walk along the crevices in his little ramp to make it less likely he would lose his balance.

That done, he turned back to Indigo and sighed loudly.

“You coming or not?” D’Varrus asked indignantly.

Indigo huffed then turned slightly to look at him out of the corner of her eye before she turned about to limp towards his ramp. He offered her a hand to help her up onto it, but she slapped it away.

“Look here. You still need my help to get out of this pit and out of this jungle so I recommend you drop the attitude and work with me, okay?” D’Varrus hissed, eyes blazing as he crossed his arms in front of himself. Since he was standing at the top of the ramp he had a good deal of more height on her than he would usually, though if Indigo let that get to her, she didn’t show it as she matched his look with a fierce one of her own.

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